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HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)

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HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by runsforcelery   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:12 pm

First Space Lord

Posts: 2425
Joined: Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:39 am
Location: South Carolina

I'm sorry I've been behind on posting these, but there were a few . . . mitigating circumstances. I'd like to thank everyone who's said prayers and good wishes my way, and I'm happy to say that they worked. The pacemaker was put in Wednesday before last without any complications and seems to be functioning fine. I'm due to go back for a postop visit this coming Wednesday. Everything's looking fine, and I'm even allowed to drive again! :twisted:

In the meantime, though, I've been dealing with things like the final page proofs for Sword of the South and a few other things which had backed up over the last several weeks. So I'm behind on quite a few things, but I'm right on the verge of catching up. And among other things I'm catching up with is the snippet.

Hope you enjoy it.

“Don’t see much sign of movement,” Corporal Paiair commented. He lay prone in the deep snow beside Sergeant Tahd Ekohls on a small but steep-sided hill, gazing down at the town of Esthyr’s Abbey in the early — for a northern East Haven winter — morning light. Their hill rose above a thin belt of second-growth woodlot, between it and the river that supplied the town’s water, which had somehow so far managed to avoid the woodsman’s ax. Probably because it was so far from the town and on the far side of the stream. The true object of their attention, however, was less the town than the bridge across that very same river.

“That’s because there isn’t any sign of movement.”

Sergeant Ekohls’ tone mingled satisfaction with sour disapproval of incompetence, and he raised his spyglass once more. A light dusting of frost, like an icy spider web, had been frozen along one edge of the objective lens, despite how careful he’d been not to expose it to the sort of temperature shifts that produced condensation in even the best sealed spyglasses. The new double-glasses were better about that, he understood, but he was used to the old style and he rested the barrel on his forearm for steadiness as he studied the spot where he would have located the picket that should have been guarding the bridge.

Be fair, Tahd, he reminded himself. Not like the entire damned river’s not frozen solid enough for draft dragons t’ walk across! Nobody really needs a bridge t’ get over it, and they bloody well won’t till spring. And the poor sodding Temple Boys’d freeze to death right fast if they did try t’ picket the thing. Still and all . . . .

He lowered the glass and looked at the lance corporal on Paiair’s far side.

“Go back and tell the Lieutenant there’s no picket on the bridge, and I don’t see anything stirring within two hundred yards of the far bank. Probably at least some poor bastards’re freezing their arses off playing sentry in the forward earthworks, but I can’t see ’em if they are. There’s smoke from a lot of chimneys in the town and at least a couple of dozen places right behind the earthworks — I’m betting it’s those dugouts the seijins told Baron Green Valley about — but right now it looks like they’re staying close to their fires.”

“Right,” Lance Corporal Fraid Tohmys, one of 3rd Platoon’s runners replied laconically.

The odds that anyone in the town might be looking their way at this particular moment, or that they might see anything at this distance even if they did, were miniscule, but Tohmys was a scout sniper. He pushed himself backwards through the snow, not rising to a crouch until he was certain his head and shoulders would be safely below the hill’s crest, then scooted down the far slope to the skis he’d left standing upright in a handy drift. He tugged them free, shoved his boots into the toe straps, and pulled back the spring-tensioned cables to lock them behind his heels. The efficiency of the Imperial Charisian Army’s cross-country skis had increased significantly with the widespread availability of the cable binding which had previously been available only to wealthy ski enthusiasts who could afford the hefty price tag. The Charisian steelmakers’ ability to produce strong, powerful springs, capable of standing up to hard use under sub-zero field conditions, and to produce them in quantity, had changed that, however, and the corporal moved rapidly off across the snow, heading back the way Paiair’s squad had come.

“All right, Zakryah,” Ekohls said, turning back to Paiair. “Let’s get somebody down into the riverbed. I want a couple of sets of eyes on the far bank.”

* * * * * * * * * *

Baron Green Valley glanced at the caribou-drawn field kitchen as he trotted past it. Mounted on broad runners, the kitchen was fitted with a central island of cook stoves and framed with solid, boxlike wooden sides. For two thirds of each side, the upper half of the outer wall formed a long, hinged panel which could be raised using cables running through pulleys at the peak of the kitchen’s steep roof. In the horizontal position, those panels were about ten feet off the ground and offered at least some protection from rain or snow for someone standing under them. Counters built into the walls’ inner faces gave the cooks working space, and the stoves featured metal plates which could be used as cooking surfaces or lifted aside to create wells into which specially fitted kettles could be slotted so the kitchens could cook soup or stew — or keep it hot — even as they moved cross-country. The runners turned the kitchens into sleds with excellent cross-country agility in winter, but they could also be fitted with wheels for mobility that was almost as good in summer.

The kitchen’s design was one more example of the old Royal Chisholmian Army’s forethought and careful planning, although the new manufacturing techniques coming out of Charis made them much cheaper and easier to build in quantity. Now, as Green Valley watched, lines of men of Company A, 3rd Battalion, 13th Regiment, 7th Brigade, of General Eystavyo Gardynyr’s 4th Division (Mountain), passed smoothly along the field kitchen’s sides. The cooks — in shirtsleeves, despite the icy temperatures, thanks to the heat generated by their stoves — ladled steaming tea into the tin cups held out to them and hot soup, thick with beef and vegetables, into the matching tin bowls.

Every ICA soldier was issued his own nested mess kit, which contained a skillet with a folding handle, a saucepan, individual fitted covers for both (curved so that they could be used as plates or bowls), and a steel knife, spoon, and fork. The entire remarkably compact package was closed with a leather strap that could be hooked to the canvas bread bag in which a soldier carried his combat rations and which, in turn, attached to his canvas web gear when he stripped down to combat order.

Even before the new mess kits, the Chisholmian Army’s arrangements for feeding its men in the field had been better than anything available to the Army of God. As just one example, the huge iron kettles of the Church’s comissaries were heavier, more cumbersome, and required far more fuel than their lighter Charisian counterparts. They were inefficient at the best of times, and if the comissary troops fell behind during troop movements (or simply got lost for a few days), the AOG troopswere ill-equipped to cook their own rations. Nor did the Army of God have any equivalent of the mobile field kitchens which kept Green Valley’s troops fueled with hot, nourishing food despite the arctic conditions.

And which saw to it that the men were well fed before going into battle. That was a tradition the ICA shared with the Imperial Charisian Navy, but it was even more important than usual under current conditions. The human metabolism burned energy like a furnace in arctic conditions. Good nourishment could become literally the difference between life and death when the cold bit, and that didn’t even consider the morale factor inherent in being fed a hot, strengthening meal before plunging into the chaos of combat.

Green Valley looked away from the field kitchen, returning his attention to the SNARCs keeping watch over Saint Esthyr’s Abbey and the farming town to which it had given its name. The SNARCs gave him an even better perspective than Sergeant Ekohls enjoyed, and their reports were both a source of profound satisfaction and one more coal for the furnace of his anger against Zhaspahr Clyntahn’s “Sword of Schueler.”

Located on the east-west high road where it passed down the center of the Northland Gap, between the Meirstrom Mointains to the north and the Kalgarans to the south, Esthyr’s Abbey was the better part of three hundred and sixty miles from the nearest navigable river: the Kalgaran River, just south of the fork where it joined the Ice Ash. It was surrounded by a broad belt of farmland, which had been interspersed with occasional areas of woodlot, most of it second-growth terrestrial imports. More trees — mixed terrestrial and Safeholdian evergreens, mostly — had been planted as windbreaks around farmhouses and barns, along the edges of farm lanes, and as protection for pastureland and feedlots, and the fields themselves were separated by walls of the dry-laid stones centuries of plowing had brought to the surface.

It must have been a pleasant vista once upon a time, but “once upon a time” was long vanished.

While it had served as a natural center for farming, Esthry’s Abbey had never been as large as many another major regional town in Siddarmark because of its distance from water transport. Its pre-Sword of Schueler population, never more than three thousand, had plummeted to little more than a thousand as those loyal to the Republic were killed or driven into exile – many of them to die of cold and starvation on the roads. Not that the Temple Loyalists had had it all their own way. The recent cluster of graves in the town cemetery indicated just how hard the loyalists had fought before their defeat. Nonetheless, it had still been home to almost thirteen hundred people the previous spring, and the survivors had greeted the Army of God’s arrival enthusiastically. But then the Great Canal Raid devastated Bishop Militant Bahrnabai’s logistics. Neither of Halcom Bahrn’s ironclads had come within three hundred miles of Esthyr’s Abbey, yet the raid had still given the town its deathblow.

Now less than two hundred of its original inhabitants remained; the rest had left voluntarily or been forcibly evacuated at Bahrnabai Wyrshym’s orders the previous fall. The bishop militant hadn’t liked giving that order — or the other orders which had effectively abandoned all of the Republic east of the Kalgarans and Meirstroms — but he’d had no option.

First, the state of his supply lines had forced him to commandeer every available scrap of transport to feed his own starving, freezing troops. That bitter truth had compelled his orders to evacuate not just Esthyr’s Abbey but every other town between there and the Kalgaran River. There’d been nothing left to keep the civilians in those towns fed, and to give credit where it was due, the evacuees were both safer and better nourished in the refugee camps Rhobair Duchairn had established in the Temple Lands.

Second, it had been painfully clear the Army of God would require a heavy numerical superiority to defeat Green Valley’s troops. Wyrshym had reached that conclusion on the basis of his experience in the Sylmahn Gap, but his original estimate of how great a superiority he would require had still been too low. Duke Eastshare’s rout of the Army of Glacierheart and — even more — the cataclysmic destruction of the Army of Shiloh had made that brutally clear, and his original strategy had changed as a result.

His intention had been to reinforce the two divisions at Allyntyn with three more divisions before Green Valley moved in that direction. Unfortunately, when the Army of Midhold actually did move the previous fall, it had advanced even more rapidly than Wyrshym had anticipated. It had swept through central Midhold, driving out those loyal to Mother Church as it came, and its 3rd Mounted Brigade had closed in on Allyntyn before any reinforcements arrived.

In some ways, that had been just as well from Wyrshym’s perspective, since his disastrous logistics made it impossible for him to sustain a force large enough to face Green Valley east of the Northland Gap. As Brigadier Mohrtyn Braisyn’s mounted infantry advanced, they’d eliminated every cavalry regiment originally assigned to Bishop Qwentyn Preskyt, but before those regiments were destroyed, they’d managed to warn Preskyt 3rd Mounted was coming. He’d semaphored the news to Wyrshym, in turn, and the bishop militant had immediately realized that Preskyt’s unreinforced divisions could never hold Allyntyn. Bitter though the choice had been — and risky, in the face of Zhaspahr Clyntahn’s wrath — Wyrshym had ordered Allyntyn abandoned to the advancing Charisians.

The bishop militant’s decisiveness had deprived Green Valley of one of the prizes he’d sought, for Preskyt’s prompt obediance had whisked the bulk of his command efficiently out of the envelopment Green Valley had planned at Allyntyn. It had been a very near thing, however, and his rearguard regiment had been trapped and destroyed when the town was captured.

Wyrshym’s decision to abandon Allyntyn had transformed Esthyr’s Abbey into the Army of the Sylmahn’s most advanced position. Preskyt’s St. Fraidyr Division and Bishop Zhaksyn Mahkhal’s Port Harbor Division had dug in there, and Wyrshym had managed to replace the regiment lost in Allyntyn and find three more cavalry regiments — all understrength — to supply a little more mobility and reach.

The three divisions Wyrshym had originally earmarked for Allyntyn had been sent instead to the town of Fairkyn on the devastated Guarnak-Ice Ash Canal, and he’d scared up two more divisions to support them there, all under Bishop Gorthyk Nybar. Preskyt was instructed to keep Nybar fully informed of his situation but reported directly to Wyrshym at Guarnak. It was an awkward arrangement, yet Green Valley understood why it had been adopted, and he had to respect Wyrshym’s reasoning. The bishop militant had arranged to keep Nybar out of the chain of command between himself and Preskyt in order to protect Nybar from the Grand Inquisitor if things went poorly at Esthyr’s Abbey. Nybar would be fully informed about what was happening to Preskyt’s command but free of any direct responsibility for it . . . and free to make his own decisions without looking over his shoulder at his own inquisitors and intendants.

The Army of God had no equivalent of the Charisian concept of organizing armies into corps, yet that was essentially what Wyrshym had done, and Nybar’s command had been designated the Army of Fairkyn for administrative purposes. It wasn’t very large as armies went: five infantry divisions and eight cavalry regiments, supported by a single regiment of artillery. If all his units had been at full strength, he would have commanded thirteen thousand men, including all of his artillerists, supported by only twenty-four twelve-pounders; in fact, he actually deployed less than eleven thousand, and keeping even that small a force adequately supplied had been difficult, although his situation had improved dramatically over the last three or four five-days.

Bishop Qwentyn Preskyt’s, unfortunately, had not. Esthyr’s Abbey was twice as far from Guarnak, and even though he was down to only forty-five hundred men, little more than seventy-five percent of his paper strength, keeping them fed over a thousand-mile long winter supply line was still a nightmare.

Worse, from Wyrshym’s perspective, the entire Army of the Sylmahn, including all detachments, counted barely sixty thousand men, less than eighty percent of the Army of Midhold’s manpower, and its men had been more poorly armed even before the Canal Raid added starvation to the mix. True, its logistic situation had improved as Duchairn got the devastated canal net repaired with one temporary expedient after another. The entire line from East Wing Lake to Ayaltyn, a tiny town on the Hildermoss River south of Cat-Lizard Lake, was technically back in service, but Ayaltyn was still almost eight hundred miles from Wyrshym’s primary forward supply center at Guarnak and the canals had already been freezing by the time Duchairn’s engineers reached the town. By now they — and every river and lake north of Guarnak — were solid sheets of ice.

That had put an end to canal repairs until spring, but the ice did provide easier going for supply sleds, and Duchairn had gotten additional snow lizards and a handful of winter-hardy hill dragons forward to Wyrshym. The ragged state of his logistics prevented him from sustaining a bigger force at Esthyr’s Abbey, but he’d begun building up supplies at Fairkyn to support Nybar and the heavier forces he’d earmarked to support him if Green Valley got past Esthyr’s Abbey. As soon as winter released its grip and further improvements in his supply line allowed Vicar Rhobair to move up the promised reinforcements, he intended to massively reinforce Nybar. Indeed, he’d been promised a minimum of a hundred thousand fresh troops, many equipped with the new rifles and improved artillery the Church’s foundries were frenetically turning out, which would give him twice Green Valley’s strength and allow him to resume the offensive by early May.

In the meantime, Esthyr’s Abbey was a forlorn and lonely place. With its civilian inhabitants dead or fled, Preskyt could probably have housed twice his actual troop strength in its houses and public buildings or in the homes, barns, and other outbuildings of the surrounding farms, if only it had been possible to feed them. As it was, the last of the abandoned livestock had been slaughtered months ago and most of Esthyr’s Abbey’s woodlots had been felled for firewood. For that matter, working parties had systematically pulled down the buildings of a steadily growing number of those outlying farms for fuel, as well, and more than a few unoccupied structures in the town itself had gone the same way.

The lack of clothing suited to North Haven’s brutal winters was another problem for all Wyrshym’s men, not just Preskyt’s force, and no improvement in his transport capability was going to change that anytime soon. Everything left behind by Esthyr’s Abbey’s citizens had been combed through, looking for any additional warm clothing Prekyt’s shivering troops could find, but the most optimistic observer couldn’t have called them adequately clothed. They’d been driven increasingly to ground under the town’s roofs, especially with the blizzards which had swept through the Gap in the last two five-days. The current warming trend would bring the temperatures up into the mid-thirties in a few days, which would encourage quite a bit of snow melt. But another bitter wave of arctic cold would follow the “warm snap” within less than two days, and the defenders of Esthyr’s Abbey were going to find themselves far less well-suited to deal with it than they were now.

Green Valley smiled thinly at the thought and sent his sturdy High Hallow forging along the trampled slot where the scout snipers and most of Brigadier Zhorj Sutyls’ 8th Infantry Brigade had moved up towards their objectives.

It was hard to pick out details of his men’s deployment. Their snow smocks blended too well into the endless whiteness around them for that. It was actually easier to spot where they’d been than where they were, thanks to the tracks they’d left behind and the little islands where squads had parked their tent and baggage-laden sleds while they stripped down to combat gear. The weather was warm enough (although, to someone of Green Valley’s Old Charisian sensibilities, calling twenty-two degrees Fahrenheit “warm” came perilously close to blasphemy) that they’d been able to discard their heavy gauntlet-style mittens in favor of lighter gloves which would make handling weapons much easier, and each squad of the platoons moving forward into their jumpoff positions had left one man to keep an eye on its sled. Since the men had left their cumbersome caribou hide outer parkas behind when they stripped down for combat, making sure those sleds and their burdens were close to hand would become critically important once the short winter’s day slid over into twilight.

Other sleds were surrounded by a different set of acolytes. Those were the ones supporting the squat, menacing tubes of 1st Corps’ mortars. Along with the influx of M96s and Trapdoor Mahndrayns, Green Valley had taken receipt of the Delthak Works’ latest upgrade of the Army of Midhold’ lethality in the form of a new four and a half-inch mortar. Technically known as the “Model 97, 4.5” Mortar,” the new weapon’s standard explosive round had four thousand yards more range than the older M95 three-inch. The range increase for its rather heavier antipersonnel round was a little less than that, but its projectiles were three times as heavy as the M95’s, with a proportionate increase in bursting charge and shrapnel which gave its rounds more than twice the lethal radius. It was, in fact, considerably more effective against concealed or semi-concealed targets than the artillery’s four-inch muzzle-loading rifles, although the field pieces had a much deeper lethal zone against exposed enemies.

There weren’t as many of the M97s as Green Valley could have wished, but there’d been enough to form them into additional support platoons, and he’d assigned one of those platoons to each of 1st Corps’ regiments. At the moment, 7th Brigade had loaned its heavy mortars to 8th Brigade, and their gunners were opening crates of bombs and propellant charges while the lighter M95s continued to make their way closer to the town. Artillery support parties had already moved up close behind the deploying infantry, carrying their signal mirrors, signal rockets, and semaphore flags with them. Additional ASPs had been dropped off to serve as relays to the heavy mortars.

Green Valley reached the brigade command post and dismounted, passing his reins to Lieutenant Slokym as he slogged through the snow to where Brigadier Sutyls was deep in conversation with Colonel Ahlfryd Maiyrz, 16th Regiment’s CO.

“So Colonel Gairwyl’s regiment is swinging around the north side of town,” Sutyls was saying, tapping the map between them. “There’s more tree cover to get in the horses’ way on that side, but its almost all evergreens. That’s actually kept the ground clear of snow, which means the mounted infantry can move pretty well, even through the trees, and they should keep anyone in town from spotting them.”

The brigadier looked up as Green Valley arrived. He and Maiyrs began to come to attention, but the baron only shook his head and pointed at the map.

Sutyls nodded to acknowledge the unspoken command and bent back over the map, tracing positions with his forefinger as he continued speaking to Maiyrs.

“Colonel Hyndryks is moving up his First and Fourth Battalions down here,” the brigadier’ indicated an arc around the town’s southern approaches. Colonel Symohr Hyndryks commanded the 15th Infantry, the 15th’s sister regiment in 8th Brigade. “He’s using this line of hills for cover, and a company of Major Kharyn’s scout snipers have outposts in these abandoned farms along here.” The finger tapped again. “That should let Hyndryks move up to within a few hundred yards of their outer earthworks without anyone seeing him, and the rest of Kharyn’s scout snipers’ve moved round to the west side with Colonel Yarith and the Sixth Mounted. The going’s not as good around the southern flank, so Yarith’s not in position yet, but his people got an early start and he’s in heliograph contact with Colonel Hyndryks. Hyndryks’ll pass the word when Yairley’s cut the high road on the far side of town. At that point, the frigging Temple Boys are in the bag, with nowhere to go when your lads kick in their front door. Best current estimate is that Hyndryks and the Sixth ought to be in position in about another hour.”

Green Valley glanced up at the sky. They were still an hour and a half or so shy of local noon, but the days were short this far north. They’d have no more than another four hours — five, at the outside — before darkness closed in once again. On the other hand, a quick check through the SNARCs agreed — for the most part — with Sutyls’ time estimate. In fact, half of Colonel Symohr Hyndryks’ 15th Infantry Regiment was already in place, close behind Fumyro Kharyn’s scout snipers, making its final weapons checks while the other two battalions remained well back to form a reserve in the unlikely event that they were needed.

Sir Uhlstyn Yarith’s mounted infantry and its accompanying ski-mounted scout snipers were a bit behind Sutyls’ schedule, however. It had been a hard slog through deep snow, even for the Chisholmian bred High Hallows and the caribou-drawn sleds of their assigned support element, but they were past the worst of it now. There’d be more than enough daylight left when they reached their positions, and the support element had already reached its position and begun erecting the first of the tents for their intended post-battle bivouac.

“Major Mahkylhyn and Major Tahlyvyr have moved up to this bank of the stream, Sir,” Maiyrs told Sutyls, tracing his own line on the map. “I’ll have Major Hylmyn in place on Tahlyvyr’s left in thirty minutes, and then we’ll just see about kicking that door down for you.”

Sutyls grunted in satisfaction. Three of 16th Infantry’s battalions — Tohmys Mahkylhyn’s 1st Battalion, Brygham Tahlyvyr’s 2nd Battalion, and Samyl Hylmyn’s 4th Battalion — were tasked as the primary assault units, while Major Rahnyld Gahdarhd’s 3rd Battalion formed the regimental reserve and Colonel Hyndryks’ infantry and the two mounted regiments prevented any breakout to the west by the AOG garrison. In theory, Brigadier Ahdryn Krystyphyr’s entire 7th Brigade was available as a reserve or to exploit succes, but Green Valley had no expectation of requiring Krystyphyr’s men. Sutyl’s brigade was almost fully up to strength, with the better part of nine thousand men present, compared to the barely forty-five hundred of all arms of Qwentyn Preskyt’s understrength units, and trying to cram Krystyphyr’s men into the operation would only have cramped the attack. That wasn’t to say that 7th Brigade’s men and officers weren’t highly miffed at being told to sit this one out, but Green Valley had already promised Krystyphyr his brigade would be allowed to take the lead in the next stage of what the baron had dubbed “Operation Winter Vengeance.”

He smiled with cold appreciation of his troops’ determination to make that name fit, but the smile faded as he thought about the one thing none of his men or he would be able to accomplish. The nearest of the Inquisition’s concentration camps was located at Hyrdmyn on the New Northland Canal, still seven hundred hopeless straight-line miles from Esthyr’s Abbey. He probably had the logistical capability to reach Hyrdmyn, but he could neither have fed the camp’s inmates after he got there nor evacuated them across that enormous distance. Those inmates were dying in dreadful numbers as cold and hunger — not to mention hopelessness and the Inquisition’s brutalities — ate away at their fragile reserves of strength and endurance. Yet without a means to evacuate them, they would only have died still faster if he’d tried to mount a rescue operation.

Kynt Clareyk was no coward, but he could no longer bear to view the SNARC imagery of the camps. He’d left that heartbreaking task to Owl and to Nahrmahn Baytz, because he couldn’t – literally couldn’t — let his personal hatred and sense of helplessness compromise his ability to think about the tasks he could accomplish. He knew what was happening at Hyrdmyn, and in the camps at places like Gray Hill, Traymos, Lakeside, Sairmeet, Blufftyn, and Lake City, and the day of reckoning the Republic would demand of the Inquisition — the entire Church of God Awaiting — in the fullness of time would be terrible enough to fit the crime. For now, all he could do was try to speed that day.

“The scout snipers and the ASPs say the ice is more than thick enough to stand the recoil from the M95s,” Maiyrs continued, “so I’m going to deploy them on the stream. They’ll be closer to our lead units if we need to signal fire missions, and they ought to be able to get up the bank without even dismounting from the sleds to keep up close once we move off.”

“Good,” Sutyls said. “Good!”

Green Valley nodded in agreement. The lighter three-inchers packed less punch than the new M97, but they also weighed less than a third as much, which meant they — and their ammunition — found it easier to keep up close behind advancing infantry. And, perhaps more to the point, the M97s could handle their part of the operation just fine from their current locations.

“All right,” the brigadier said. “It sounds to me like we’re just about ready. Do you have anything you’d care to add, My Lord?”

He looked at Green Valley, who shook his head.

“It’s your brigade, Zhorj, and it’s all looking good to me. Besides, you know my motto. ‘If it isn’t broken —’”

He paused, and both of his subordinates grinned broadly at him.

“— ‘don’t fix it,’” they finished in unison.

“Exactly.” Green Valley smiled back at them, and it was a hungry, predatory smile. “On the other hand, I’m entirely in favor of your breaking something else.”

"Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as Piglet came back from the dead.
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by Kakai   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:29 pm


Posts: 162
Joined: Mon Jun 24, 2013 7:46 am

Yikes, a new snippet! :D Thank you, Mr Weber, and it's good to hear that things are looking up. (although this "twisted evil" mark next to "allowed to drive again!" leaves me a tad worried ;) )

“Winter Vengeance”? Nice. OTOH, it would seem we'll have to wait for some more time before concentration camps come into play. Oh, well.

Once again, thanks for the snippet.
When in mortal danger, when beset by doubt,
Run in little circles, wave your arms and shout.

- Ciaphas Cain
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by jeremyr   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:42 pm

Lieutenant Commander

Posts: 147
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:33 pm
Location: Corinth, TX

runsforcelery wrote:I'm sorry I've been behind on posting these, but there were a few . . . mitigating circumstances. I'd like to thank everyone who's said prayers and good wishes my way, and I'm happy to say that they worked. The pacemaker was put in Wednesday before last without any complications and seems to be functioning fine. I'm due to go back for a postop visit this coming Wednesday. Everything's looking fine, and I'm even allowed to drive again! :twisted:

In the meantime, though, I've been dealing with things like the final page proofs for Sword of the South and a few other things which had backed up over the last several weeks. So I'm behind on quite a few things, but I'm right on the verge of catching up. And among other things I'm catching up with is the snippet.

Hope you enjoy it.

Happy to hear you are doing well.
And "Yes" I enjoyed it.
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by Undercover Fat Kid   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:47 pm

Undercover Fat Kid

Posts: 207
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 11:20 pm

Glad to hear you're doing well!
Death is as a feather,
Duty is as a mountain
This life is a dream
From which we all
Must wake
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by Keith_w   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:07 pm


Posts: 971
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:10 pm
Location: Ontario, Canada

Thank you very much for the Snippet, RFC, and very glad to hear that you are doing well.
A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by Isilith   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:32 pm

Captain (Junior Grade)

Posts: 309
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:58 am

Thank God that you doing better, I am very glad to hear it.

As to the snippet, I LOVE IT!!! I can't want to see the AoG lose their entire army, and the rage that sends a certain someone into.

Also.... SKI TROOPS!!!! :D
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by bigrunt   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 6:01 pm

Lieutenant Commander

Posts: 117
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2013 3:34 pm
Location: St Augustine FL

Glad to hear you are doing well and thank you for feeding our addiction
I am the runt of the litter (Granted it was a litter of really big pups)
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by ksandgren   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 6:26 pm

Captain (Junior Grade)

Posts: 342
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 6:54 pm
Location: Los Angeles, California

Thanks for the wonderful snippet! - and for great news on the continuing recovery. This part of BGVs operation is probably the single part of HFQ I most eagerly await.
Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by da bear   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 6:56 pm

da bear

Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Jan 19, 2015 10:24 pm

Re: HFQ Official Snippet #26 (I think)
Post by Henry Brown   » Sun Jun 07, 2015 7:49 pm

Henry Brown

Posts: 910
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 1:57 pm
Location: Greenville NC

I'd say the new 4.5 inch mortar is going to be fairly important as the series continues. It is described as having 4000 yards extra range compared to the older 3 inch mortar. If I'm not mistaken, the old mortars could fire something like a mile to a mile and a half. So the new M97 mortars should have something like 3.5 to 4 miles of total range. If the ICA can work out a good system for forward fire control that is going to be a pretty substantial advantage on any battlefield. Or better yet, put the 4.5 mortars on high ground so they can direct their own fire.

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