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#4456688 - 01/09/19 08:17 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Sector ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha
January 10, 1915

The morning was cold and grey, the deck of the ship was cold and grey, the sea was cold and grey.

The pier at Portsmouth was cold and grey. Sunlight tried to penetrate the fog and smoke but it gave up somewhere between the sky and the ground and lurked sullenly out of reach.

Drummond watched as his new friends from the AIF formed ranks and marched off into the gathering fog, bound for some holding depot inland where they would be taught the finer points of trench warfare, the merging sport of nations. He felt around in his pocket for the letter that Peter had given him and his temporary papers that had been issued to him by the port authorities. They were still there inside the sealed, waxed envelope of his coat which wasn't quite for an English winter.

The distant sound of voices singing in unison penetrated the fog.

"Up jumped the swagman and sprang into the billabong,
You'll never catch me alive, said he,
And his ghost may be heard as you pass by that billabong,
you'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me.
"

Drummond had never felt more alone. To take his mind off of it he went over the instructions he had been given. Get the train to London from the stations three streets over, take a cab from the station in London to Fleet street and present himself, along with the letter of introduction that Peter had given him to the offices of 'The Right Hon Major Neville Drummond" and present himself for candidacy for enlistment. There was nothing to be down in the dumps about, just put one foot in front of the other and keep on walking.


Let's pretend I got the BWOC badge to embed here.

Wenn ihr sieg im deine Kampf selbst gegen, wirst schwer wie stahl sein.
#4456768 - 01/10/19 04:14 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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L'Etoile du Nord
.

A wonderful bit of writing AP, most evocative.

Raine, James is getting his trial by fire when it comes to the Parasol. One of the trickier tasks with the little beast is indeed keeping it on the ground and upright once you have it there. Also, it was the blue plate special Swany found.

Carrick, love the old photo of the mg practice set-up.

Scout, Aleck is suffering the bane of many a WWI pilot, that of trying to sort out just where the hell one is. But he read his map and managed in the end - well done.



Yet another day of foul weather at Auchel, this time rain and wind rather than the snow. And again, no flying. On a brighter note, a Christmas package from home that had first been sent to Netheravon, missing Swany by a day, had been forwarded along and found its way to his new digs. It was sitting on his bunk waiting for him upon his return from a map reading class given by the camp Operations Officer shortly after lunch. The box had clearly been fashioned with board trimmings from his uncle's saw mill, and when Swany pried the top off the smell of pine wafted out, reminding him instantly of home. He dug into the packing of wood shavings and excelsior and began pulling out the paper-wrapped treasures within: three pairs of thick wool socks and a warm scarf to match; two quart jars of blueberry preserves; a bag of black licorice, (the young man's favorite candy); a tin of homemade spritzkakor; and a bottle of akvavit. The final item nestled down in the wooden crate was a gift he'd received from his parent's when he was eight, and the one thing he'd specifically asked to have sent him; his Hardanger fiddle. He lifted the pressed leather case from the packing, gently brushing away the pine shavings. He opened the lid and inspected the instrument, which had survived its journey perfectly. Swany then removed the bow case from its nesting, making a similar inspection of the contents. All was well, and after a brief tuning of the fiddle he began to play an old Norwegian dance melody. The young man smiled broadly and his face glowed as he guided the bow deftly back and forth across the strings. He dearly loved the sound, and it transported him back to holidays on the farm. His eyes began to glisten as he suddenly realized just how much he missed his family and friends in Warroad. As he finished up the tune he dabbed his eyes with the back of his bow hand.

"That's some fancy fiddle work, Swany. You didn't tell me you played an instrument." The young man was momentarily shocked as he spun around to see 2nd Lt. Jericho standing at the door of the hut. Swany had been so wrapped up in the moment that he hadn't even heard him come in.

"Mark! You gafe me a start. Ya, I ah, I'vff been playing since I vas a boy." Swany's mixed Norwegian/Minnesotan/Canadian accent tended to come on stronger when he was startled or stressed.

"Well dang, wished I'd known that sooner, I would'a had my guitar sent along and we could have ourselves a regular show." This time it was Mark's Mississippian/Texan dialect tinting the reply. "That tune you just scratched off there, that was a lively one, good for dancin' I'll wager."

"You betch'ya!", Swany shot back.

For the remainder of the afternoon the two airmen talked of music and home and family, sharing some of the baked goods and candy and liquor that had accompanied Swany's prized fiddle. Mark discovered how well a sugar cookie and a bite of licorice went with a shot of akvavit. Truth be told he made the discovery several times, after which he taught Swany the tune and words to "The Cowboy's Lament". Unbeknownst to the pair, their singing and fiddle accompaniment could be heard quite some distance beyond the hut, and no small mention was made of it in the mess that evening.

.



#4456794 - 01/10/19 07:08 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
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Originally Posted by RAF_Louvert
. But he read his map and managed in the end - well done.


In truth he read YOUR map. Also well done!! smile
Cheers!

#4456852 - 01/11/19 01:50 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Maeran Online content
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In typical me fashion, I need to catch up. William has flown his familiarisation flights which will be told of soon, but first; the Christmas special (yes I know it's January). It's going to be long, so settle in!
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[Linked Image]
Lady Alice Stanley, Countess of Derby

Lady Alice stood beside the wide sweeping staircase that dominated the entrance hall of her London town house. As she welcomed her son home, Second Lieutenant William Stanley handed his bag to a servant. Now unencumbered, he rushed forward to embrace his mother’s hand.
“William,” Lay Alice smiled, “I am so glad that you have been able to get leave. This will be a wonderful Christmas, with all of my children around me.”
“So Edward and Oliver are home?”
“Yes. I’m sure that they would want to each give their own news, but both of your brothers are back in England. Victoria is also spending Christmas with us since Neil is overseas.”
“How is she doing? William asked.
“She blooms, William,” Lady Alice smiled.

[Linked Image]
Edward Stanley, The Earl of Derby

Lord Derby was just leaving his study as William approached it. In his middle age, Derby was a heavy set man with a moustache that put many people in mind of a walrus. Following behind him was a moustache that was unmistakable. The face that wore it was known across the globe, but it looked ruddier than normal.
William caught the tail end of their exchange.
“...not enough. They’ll force the prime minister’s hand.”
“I cannot stand for it,” the famous moustache gruffly replied. “Bad for the morale... I say. We have a visitor!”

Lord Derby looked up and saw William. “William! Lord Kitchener, this is my second son, William. He is newly qualified as a pilot for the Flying Corps.”
Two watery eyes assayed William. “The other twin, eh?”
“Yes sir,” William salute the Field Marshall, who returned the salute. “Lord Stanley is my brother.”
“And a fine officer in the Grenadier guards, I understand.” Earl Kitchener’s moustache twitched as a thought occurred to him, “A prestigious regiment, much like Horse Guards. What prompted your change to an irregular unit, Stanley?”
William had been asked this question before and so had an answer. “As a second son, sir, I must make a name for myself in the world. I joined the Royals because I share my father’s fondness for horses.” Lord Derby smiled as his son continued, “And also in the hope that some of the glamour of the cavalry would help my career.”

Lord Kitchener looked at William with interest. Usually men spoke to him in jingoistically patriotic terms rather than revealing the personal ambition that often lay beneath. William went on, “in the initial movements, we had action, but it wasn’t the cavalry charges that I was expecting. As time went on, I realised that the mantle of the cavalry has passed on to the flying corps. If I want to make a name for myself, then I must do so in a new theatre of war. Namely the air, sir.”
Kitchener looked at him in silence for a moment. “So you seek personal glory?”
“I do sir.”
“Very good, Second Lieutenant,” Kitchener’s moustache distorted in a smile. “Ambition drives men to achieve great things. I wish you success in your endeavours.”

[Linked Image]
Edward Stanley junior, Lord Stanley of Bickerstaff

Edward and Stanley were not identical twins, but they were very similar in appearance. As William entered the drawing room, the tall, dark haired Lord Stanley of Preston stood from his chair with grin. He was wearing a navy blue sack suit and a moustache that looked like a starter version of his father’s.
“Bill! I hear that you have sprouted wings. And I always thought it would be a devil’s horns! Congratulations!”
“Thank you Eddie.” William smiled, “Mufti?”
“Mufti?” their sister asked from the couch. “What does that mean?”
The youngest of the family, Oliver answered from beside the window. “He is referring to Eddie’s wearing of civilian clothes, Vicky.”
[Linked Image]
the honerable Oliver Stanley

“Yes indeed,” Edward nodded, “I wanted to escape the army khaki for a while. If I can’t do it here, then where can I?”

“Alright. I shan’t report you to the white feather crowd” William teased. “Vicky! You look radiant. How are you?”
Mrs Victoria Primrose smiled and touched the noticeable bump. “I’m better for seeing my brothers. Since Neil went to Egypt it seems that my only company is the clucking hens of London society.” She paused to take a sip of tea.

“ Of course, with the season open again, I should rather be dancing. However that is increasingly impractical in my condition.
“I do hope that you have your dancing shoes, Bill. Father is throwing a soirée.” She lifted her teacup again and grinned mischievously, “With three eligible sons all home from the war, the debutantes will lay siege to the house!”

[Linked Image]
The war had strained the traditional London season. Most of the aristocracy’s sons had gone to war at the first opportunity. As the war dragged on a second season had begun and the youth of a generation had remained abroad fighting.

The other aspects of the yearly round of parties and courtly still went on. Mostly. Debutantes had not been presented to the King George at a lavish ball this year, although this did not stop them attending the many social gatherings in the hope of attracting the right sort of attention.

The season wasn’t just a marriage market. Businessmen made connections and put deals in place while politicians wove alliances over the hors d’ouvres. All to the delightful sounds of a string quartet.

As a future Earl, Edward was very popular. William had noticed that more than one young lady’s smile had dropped slightly when she realised that she was talking to ‘the wrong twin.’ However, even the second and third sons of an Earl were quite a catch and both Oliver and William had no shortage of flirtatious glances come there way.

“Oh, but that there were time to dance with them all!” William opined. He had noticed that Edward had spent a lot of time with Sibyl Cadogan. Perhaps one less to dance with.

There was a bump against his shoulder.
“Oh! I’m so sorry,” a young woman with her dark hair in a bob and a pastel evening gown said, patting at William’s dress uniform.

There was something about her smile, William thought. A mixture of assurance and nerves. It was quite charming.
“It no trouble at all,” William told the young lady. “I don’t believe that we have met. I am William Stewart; the younger of the twins.”

The young lady smiled warmly, “I know. I am Diana Baldwin. My father is over there arguing, I mean debating about conscription with your father.”

William looked across at the huddle knot of conservative MPs stood around Lord Derby. Diana realised that she was diverting the young man’s attention away.

“I say,” she rallied. “Your uniform looks a bit different. Are those wings? Are you a pilot?”

William was happy to admit that he was.
[Linked Image]
Lady Diana Baldwin

Last edited by Maeran; 01/11/19 01:00 PM. Reason: Added a picture of Edward Stanley that I couldn't get to work yesterday
#4456941 - 01/11/19 09:04 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Aleck A. MacKinlay
January 11, 1916

After two days of snowy weather we were able to resume flying operations. Major Mills indicated that he had enough confidence in me to carry out a simple flight to the front lines. I was tasked with navigating my way to overfly some German positions southeast of Armentieres, and would be followed by Sergent Eric Hunt in a second BE2. Hunt is apparently a fairly fearless type, who can be counted on in a tight situation.

Our proposed path to the target had many good landmarks and I was confident that I could find my way with little trouble. We took off that dawn. I soon discovered that either I had the better plane or Hunt was not a particularly skilled pilot because twice he felt so far behind we lost sight of him. Each time Chris signaled to me that we should turn back to find him.

The ground was covered with snow and I found this a great advantage in navigation; roads and railroads were very easy to spot in contrast to the white fields. I reached the German army positions with no problem and began to circle, thrilled to see the front lines for the first time. I had been warned that we would see flak, and that it would be quite frightening, but not a single shot was fired in our direction.

Exiting a shallow turn to port, I spotted a dot in the sky to the southwest. A wave of fear immediately engulfed me as I was sure we were about to be attacked by one of the dreaded Eindekkers I had heard so much about. I pointed and Chris turned in his seat to see why my face had dropped. He turned back with a look of concern and pointed to the northwest; we had strict instructions to run for home at the first sign of trouble. I nodded and banked in that direction. We passed through a large cloud the obscured us for a few minutes and my fears began to subside. As we exited the cloud I was shocked to see the mystery aircraft ahead to the left, obviously moving to cut off our retreat. My head began to buzz and my stomach seemed to drop through the bottom of me seat.

Chris pulled out his binoculars and scanned the distant aircraft. He turned back and yelled "Aviatik, no worries" and signaled that we should turn back to complete our mission. My bowels were completely liquid at this point and I had no desire to do anything other than head home, but obviously could not let my feelings be known. We overflew the German frontline positions for a few more minutes and then Chris indicated we should head for home. I realize now why he made had me go back; he wanted me to feel the fear and not run away or abandon my mission.

The trip home was uneventful and, thanks to generous landmarks, any questions about my navigation skills seem to have been put to rest. Hunt told me that I had flown well and congratulated me, then indicated he was off to have a word with the mechanics about the poor state of his aircrafts engine. Chris also seemed quite pleased with my performance, but I told him I was honestly scared silly when we saw that enemy aircraft. All he said was, "That's OK Aleck, so was I" with a big grin on his face.
http://SimHQ.com/forum/tmp/13245.jpg

Attached Files 2019.01.11 - 11.32.02.29.jpg
Last edited by 77_Scout; 01/11/19 09:06 PM.
#4456944 - 01/11/19 09:16 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Great stories everybody! With so many pilot careers developing nicely, I'm hoping we won't have any casualties - but of course I know there will be. DID is DID, after all.

In my latest entry, Julius finally makes it to the front, and encounters one of the rising stars of the Fliegertruppen...

3. OVER FLANDERS FIELDS

“I shan't give this up again, I swear to you.”

- Kaiser Wilhelm II during a visit to the Flanders front, October 1915.

January 5, 1916.

“Happy New Year, Herr Schreck!” The administrative officer said to Julius and flashed a fake smile that resembled the grin of a corpse more than anything.

“Happy New Year, Herr Hauptmann!” Julius stood in one of the offices of the headquarters building where he had been ordered to report early that morning.

“Well then, let’s get down to business, shall we? I imagine you are already eagerly waiting for your assignment? Well, I have some good news for you right here!” The officer paused for a while and kept grinning in a comically macabre fashion. Julius had already learned to dislike the fellow, so even though he was indeed excited to finally hear about his assignment, he kept his feelings under tight control.

“Yes, Herr Hauptmann. I would very much like to hear the news.”

“Excellent! Well, based on your performance at the flight school and the needs of the Fliegertruppen, you are hereby ordered to report to Feldflieger-Abteilung 32 at Bertincourt!” The Hauptmann had a map of the Western Front on his table and pointed at a location in Northern France. “See, it’s this small town here between Amiens and Cambrai. Quite close to the frontline, so you’ll be right there in the middle of it! Pretty exciting, eh? And you’ll be working in support of XIV. Reserve-Korps under 2. Armee command. The British 3rd Army is here opposite you!” The Hauptmann tapped the map excitedly with his finger.

Julius looked at the map and nodded. “Indeed, Herr Hauptmann! I look forward to getting there!”

“Well, that is the next item on the menu, as they say! You will be going there by plane!”

Now Julius was truly surprised. “You mean I get to fly there?”

“Yes, though not by yourself! You will go to Bertincourt as a passenger in a brand new Aviatik C-type!”

At that moment, somebody knocked on the door. “Come in!” The Hauptmann said with a shrill voice. A rather short, blond-haired man with a square jaw stepped inside and briskly saluted the higher-ranking officer.

[Linked Image]

“Offizierstellvertreter Schreck, this is Leutnant Gustav Leffers, one of our finest combat flyers! He will be your pilot!” The Hauptmann had stood up. His smile appeared more genuine now.
The Leutnant approached the desk and shook hands with Julius. “A pleasure to meet you, Herr Schreck. I trust you are ready to leave as soon as possible?” Leffers had a firm grip and a slightly mischievious look in his eyes.

“I am, Herr Leutnant! I just need to get my things and we can start right away!”

“Excellent. But first we need to get you some proper flying gear. It’s rather cold up there, and you’ll freeze to death without thick furs!”

Leffers waited as Julius finished the necessary paperwork with the Hauptmann. Then Julius practically ran to the barracks to fetch his backpack and from there proceeded to the depot building, where he was given his flight gear. From the depot, the men went to the row of hangars, where their Aviatik was already being readied for takeoff by the field mechanics.

Leffers, now wearing a brown flying suit, put his right hand on the plane’s fuselage. The Aviatik had a fresh coat of white paint. “This girl is a brand new machine, straight out of the factory!” Leffers sounded like an enthusiastic rider talking about his horse.

“We flew B-types at Bork, but never a C-type”, Julius said while carefully studying the machine. He was also wearing a flying suit.

“Yes, well, this is really not so different. These are typically armed with a Spandau or two for the observer, but as you can see, we’ll be flying unarmed! Don’t worry, it’ll be perfectly safe. We’ll be staying behind our lines, and the enemy has no interest in harassing us there. In fact, they are quite scared of our Fokkers!” Leffers looked at Julius and smiled encouragingly.

“Herr Leutnant, I understand you’ve scored victories flying the Eindecker?”

“Let’s leave the military formalities aside, shall we? Just follow my instructions and we’ll be fine! I was actually promoted to Leutnant only a couple of months ago. And yes, I have shot down two British machines with our Abteilung’s Fokkers. As a matter of fact, my second victory was only a few days ago. But please, call me Gustav!” Leffers paused for a while before continuing. “However, our unit commander, Hauptmann Viebig, is not so informal. So do remember to address him properly!”

“I will, Herr -- Gustav!” Julius stammered and felt his cheeks turning red.

Leffers chuckled. “It becomes like second nature, doesn’t it? I’m actually a civilian engineer working for the Hamburg-America Line. I had no intention of becoming a soldier - far from it - but I happened to return from America just when the war was breaking out, and, well, the rest is history, as they say!”

“You’ve been to America? I’ve always wanted to travel there!” Julius was instantly reminded of Karl May’s stories of American Indians.

“Well, perhaps you’ll get a chance some day! But let’s get ourselves ready for takeoff now, shall we? We can talk more when we get to Bertincourt.”

[Linked Image]

The weather was cold and the sky was completely covered by a thick layer of clouds as Leffers throttled up and the Aviatik began to accelerate on the field. Soon they were airborne. Julius sat in front of Leffers on the observer’s seat and followed their progress on a map. From Cologne, Leffers took a straight path to Aachen, Liège, Namur, Charleroi and finally to Cambrai and from there to Bertincourt on the southwestern side of Cambrai. The flight was uneventful and the new Aviatik performed well without trouble of any kind. Leffers made a smooth landing on the snow-covered field. As the engine suddenly stopped, the silence that followed felt almost deafening to Julius.

Now it begins, was the thought repeating itself in his mind, over and over again.


"Upon my word I've had as much excitement on a car as in the air, especially since the R.F.C. have had women drivers."

James McCudden, Five Years in the Royal Flying Corps
#4456961 - 01/12/19 12:44 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Nigel Archibald Notting
Sgt, RFC
4 Sqn Rfc.
Allonville, Flanders


11 Jan 1916.

Our 2 machines were doing a Recon at the front when bullets ripped into my kite. 2 Un seen monoplanes had sneaked up behind us and was letting loose a torrent of slugs. My ride took 7 rds mostly holes but one caused fuel to leak, The motor stopped and I faked a spin to shake off the Huns, Landing near Rail road tracks My Ob set out for a farm in the distane to call for help. I found out later that my wing mate was chased off the Recon Hq was not happy.

Attached Files CFS3 2019-01-11 16-24-30-91.jpgCFS3 2019-01-11 16-31-47-99.jpgCFS3 2019-01-11 16-32-34-88.jpg
#4457016 - 01/12/19 04:43 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Wonderful stories Gents. This is really going to be enjoyable reading the exploits of all the pilots. I have finally caught up on everyone's adventures. Great stories, pics and historical context.

Mark Jericho
Auchel aerodrome
Jan. 11, 1916

Jericho sat in his machine with a headache and a queezy belly. The night before Swany had coaxed him into trying some infernal drink that he said was "very good." He did not blame Swany for it. Jericho was a grown man and had made his own decision but it confirmed his belief about alcohol. The stuff was no good for him. He was set to go on his first real combat mission across the lines. C Flight was to recon the lines north of Ypres and note any troop movement. The cold air helped Jericho's outlook a bit as the three machines climbed to altitude toward the front. Captain Whorton, his observer, had spent the last few non flying days going over signals with Jericho as to what he wanted him to do. Jericho payed close attention to the Captain. As he said, "Our lives depend on us understanding each other."

Over the front at 6000' Jericho kept his machine in the 3 position and scanned the sky for any other aircraft. The flight went well. No archie and no contact with enemy aircraft. Jericho was happy to see the Flight Leader turn toward home and he was looking forward to some coffee and his cot. Approaching Auchel there was a smashed up Morane on the field. "Someone bit the bullet" Jericho thought to himself. He then settled his machine on the field well clear of the wreckage and rolled to a stop. As Jericho stepped out Captain Whorton asked him how many enemy machines he saw.

"No enemy machines Sir. I did see 2 BE's off to the south" was his reply.

Captain Whorrton looked at him gravely. "2 Aviatiks went right behind us as 2 Fokkers went right over our heads! Lucky for us the 2 Fokkers were escorting another 2 Aviatiks so they didn't come down to play! You may be a good pilot but you have to be aware of your surroundings if we are going to get through this Lieutenant!"

"Yes Sir Captain." was all Jericho could say.

After a short debriefing, where they learned the pilot and observer of the crashed Morane were ok, Jericho made his way to his tent to find Swany sitting on his cot playing his fiddle which in his present state of mind sounded like the clatter wheels of hell. "Mind laying off the strings for a bit Swany."

"Flight go bad my friend?" Swany asked with a broad smile

"No, the flight went well enough. Its that Devils Brew you talked me into drinking last night. I feel like my head is in a bucket of plaster! You don't have to worry about me drinking any more of it."

Swany lowered his fiddle and looked at Jericho. "Well I thought is was a great time." Swany said in his dialect that Jericho was beginning to understand.

Jericho checked his attitude. "Awe, not to worry my friend. Alcohol has never done anyone in my family any favors. I should thank you for reminding me why I have no use for it."

Jericho liked Swany a lot. A farm boy just like himself. they had a lot in common.

"Let me get some coffee and a bit of a rest to clear my head and tonight we will see if we can strike up another tune' Jericho said forcing a smile.

"Ya" replied Swany with a big grin.




Last edited by MFair; 01/12/19 04:45 PM.

Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from either end.
BOC Member since....I can't remember!
#4457025 - 01/12/19 06:24 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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L'Etoile du Nord
.

Another wonderful group of stories and reports gents, ripping stuff. As Hasse noted, our pilots are really coming to life here, which will make it all the harder when one, or more, of them is lost. Here's hoping they all survive, as unlikely as that will be.
And Mark, Swany will be sure NOT to involve Jericho in any future drinking parties. Truth be told, he doesn't tend to indulge in it much himself.
.

January 12th, 1916
Auchel, France


2nd Lt. Swanson had his first tangle with the enemy this morning during an early recce of the lines along the eastern edge of Loos. He and his gunner/obs, Lt. Christoper Dent, flew wing for the Sergeants team of Toni Bayetto and James McCudden. It was a bright winter's morning with clear skies and light winds, making the climb towards the eastern horizon quite beautiful. Once the brace of Moranes reached the front lines observations began of the situation below. There was one section of the British trenches that was receiving a heavy bombardment from the German big guns and Swany wondered how anyone could survive in the midst of such a pounding.

About fifteen minutes into the recce work Lt. Dent tapped Swany on the shoulder and pointed to a spot in the sky ahead of them. It was an approaching craft and its outline was immediately recognizable to Swany as it looked precisely as it did on the aeroplane silhouette chart that hung in the ready room. An Eindecker! The Hun came straight at them so Swany gave some extra rudder as he slid his mount off to the left in hopes of getting out of the line of fire. Oddly though, rather than sending out a hail of bullets, the German pilot suddenly turned away. As the Morane slipped past and below the Eindecker Lt. Dent, machine gun at the ready, unleashed several short bursts that immediately set the Hun plane to smoking. Swany was not quite sure what to do next, but before he had time to mull it over Christopher smacked him on the shoulder again and motioned that he should give chase. Swany swung his mount around immediately and started after the disabled ship, noticing then that Bayetto and McCudden were engaged with an Eindecker of their own, and clearly keeping the upper hand. The young pilot wondered if these particular German flyers were as green as he was, given how poorly they were faring in the engagement.

After what seemed like an eternity to Swany, (though in truth it was but several minutes), their prey was back in range. The Hun had been losing altitude the entire time as he flew a long arc that was now bringing him near the lines about three miles south of Loos. At Lt. Dent's instruction, Swany pulled carefully along side the Eindecker. He could see the Hun pilot was struggling to keep his kite in the air. Suddenly, the Lewis gun barked as Lt. Dent opened fire, causing the prop on the enemy craft to grind to a halt. Swany watched as the Eindecker glided down. He lost sight of it below the empennage and so did not see as the Hun ship bounced just on its own side of the lines, ending up on its nose.

After forming back up with Bayetto and McCudden, the flight returned to Auchel. Swany could hardly contain himself, his excitement was so high. The young man was fairly buzzing as he recounted the adventure to the ground crew that wheeled his bus back into the shed. Again, as he retold it while filling out not only his AAR, but a claim form as well. And once more, as he told it yet again in the mess during breakfast. Along with the excitement though, Swany was feeling some fair amount of guilt and had taken Lt. Dent aside at one point to ask why he'd insisted they go after the helpless German flyer. Christopher's face became stern as stone and his eyes blazed as he replied, "You're new to all this so I'm going to forgive you asking, but I can assure you he had it coming. They all do. They're the bloody enemy and I've no compassion for any of them. Don't imagine for a moment that Hun devil would have allowed us to fly away had the situation been reversed." Swany was taken aback by the ferocity of the Lieutenant's reply. He was indeed new to war, and likely did have no right to be asking such a thing from those who no doubt had lost good friends in the fight. Swany suddenly felt foolish for bringing it up. Lt. Dent could see his rebuke of the young airman had landed hard, so he gave a smile and slapped Swany on the back. "No to worry old man, all's forgiven. I'll buy you a drink tonight in the mess and we'll celebrate your baptism."
.

Watching as a helpless enemy falls away.
[Linked Image]

.


#4457048 - 01/12/19 08:29 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Vancouver Island, Canada
Aleck A. MacKinley
January 12, 1916

Flew my 4th mission today and it was a real combat mission; seems like my orientation and coddling phase is over.

A bombing mission was to be carried out by Lt. McNaughton and 2Lt Harrity, both flying FE2's, and because the mission was in an area prowled by Fokkers an escort by our two Bristol's was attached. Major Mills seemed to add me onto the mission as an afterthought (although I am sure he had planned it out well in advance). "McNaughton and Harrity, I think it best if you take along our new fellow. MacKinley hasn't had a chance to throw anything at the Bosch yet so here's an excellent opportunity for him to see how it's done". I found this quite daunting as it seemed a very serious mission with some of our top pilots. MacNaugton, for example, has four kills; almost an ace.

It should have been simple, just follow the FE2's to the target and drop my 4 Cooper bombs when they did. But I cocked it up. I looked away for a few seconds as we formed up after takeoff and I lost sight of the other planes. Damned if they didn't just disappear. Chris was not impressed and indicated we should circle and climb in the hope of finding them again. After nearly 20 minutes we were up to 6000 feet, still near our airfield, and totally alone. Chris was visibly annoyed and I knew this was a major screw-up that the Major would certainly chew me out over. We would obviously have to abort and land.

Suddenly Chris was pointing to the northeast and mouthing the words "Let's go". He was indicating we should carry on with the mission alone! Right, yes, of course ... we have to go on. I knew it was bloody dangerous but I could see Chris had no intention of us looking like incompetants or cowards, and damnit my anger at myself suddenly flaired into a feeling of powerful determination.

The German army positions were easy to find, located just SE of Lake De Blankaart, and we arrived without further incident. From 7000 feet I could see nothing on the ground but churned earth and a few artillery explosions ... we simply dropped our bombs over the general area with no idea of hitting anything specific. Our bombs whistled away, then shockingly we heard another chorus of whistling bombs coming from above. We couldn't believe our luck as MacNaughton and Harris flew right over our heads in their two FE2b's.

What elation on the flight home as I realized we would arrive back at Abeele in formation and having completed the mission. I was sure we (well mostly I) would get a lecture about keeping close to my flight and paying closer attention, but we had redeemed ourselves in the end. Thank God for Chris ... his instinct to press on was brilliant. With men of his calibre we shall have this war won soon enough.

http://SimHQ.com/forum/tmp/13275.jpg

Attached Files 2019.01.12 - 11.23.36.31.jpg
Last edited by 77_Scout; 01/13/19 12:18 AM.
#4457067 - 01/12/19 10:19 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Wow, great stories all around. Looks like everyone is getting their feet wet, especially Lou with his first claim. Congrats and I hope it will be confirmed, although I find brass usually rejecting that "first" one. They usually need a second claim to take you seriously. Fingers crossed.
Gaston is happy to be finally flying again after the latest winter storms.

11 January, 1916
Toul
Sergent Gaston A. Voscadeaux

It’s been snowing for the last 4 days. Gaston’s first flight to the front had to be postponed. In the meantime he was able to finally meet his mitrailleur.
Adjutant Dumas was giving Gaston a tour of the aerodrome. “And here we have our mess room,” explained Dumas as they walked into the room. There were only a few pilots present.
“Ah, bon!” Dumas continued. “Let me introduce you to your gunner. You’ll be spending a lot of time together, I expect.”
They approached a lonely figure sitting at one of the tables, loading his pipe with tobacco, which he was picking from a sizeable pouch laying on the table. The man was large and most of his face was covered by a thick beard. His black hair needed a haircut and he seemed even older than Gaston.
Dumas made the introductions, “Adjutant Ernest Becquerel meet Sergent Gaston Voscadeaux. He will be your new pilot.” Ernest raised his eyes to meet Gaston’s. Gaston gave him a meek smile. In return Becquerel made a sound that could only be translated as “Mmmmm” and went back to his pipe. Adjutant Dumas broke the silence, “Wonderful. Now that you’re acquainted, we will continue our tour. You can get to know each other better later.” Gaston wanted at least to shake the man’s hand, but Dumas was already leaving the room. “Glad to have met you and hope to talk to you soon. Bye!” Gaston quickly spat his farewell and ran after Dumas. The small adjutant was waiting for him outside rubbing his hands together for warmth.
“Great! It looks like you two hit it off.” Dumas was excited.
“How can you say that? The man barely said anything.” Gaston was surprised.
“Well, he said more to you in 1 minute than to anyone else during the past week.” Adjutant Dumas was walking quickly. It was cold and the snow kept on falling.
Finally on the 11th the weather turned and the flights resumed. Gaston was assigned to fly as a wingman to Caporal Sourdiac on a bombing mission up north with the target being a reserve lines depot. Capitaine de Bondy specifically instructed Voscadeaux to not cross the lines. “Follow Caporal Sourdiac to the front and then turn back. Is that understood, Voscadeaux?” Captain’s words were still ringing in Gaston’s ears as he was climbing to altitude behind Sourdiac’s machine. His new gunner was sitting in front looking around, keeping a vigilant eye for the Hun’s surprise attack. Gaston concentrated on keeping up with the leader and holding his place in formation. It annoyed him that Caporal Sourdiac kept playing with the throttle, preventing Gaston from keeping consistent distance apart. He nearly lost him when the other one flew into a cloud to keep his flight path to the front as uncomplicated as possible. Voscadeaux kept on stealing quick glances down below to try and navigate by himself, instead of blindly following the aircraft in front. But because Sourdiac kept on adjusting the throttle all the time he had to concentrate on his position, otherwise he’d end up smashing into the Caporal as he sped up and slowed down.
It took all of Gaston’s concentration to fly in formation so much so that it took him by surprise when Ernest turned to face Gaston and pointed south with his gloved hand. At first, Gaston didn’t understand what he was pointing at, but after looking around and realizing they were flying over the NML, he quickly turned the plane around separating from the leader, who waved to them for good luck and continued on his way to the target. Gaston wanted to follow, but remembered his plane wasn’t loaded with bombs. Capitaine de Bondy made sure Gaston would follow his orders this way. It was now up to Gaston to get them back to base. It should be easy. Just fly south, keep the large forest de Puvenelle on his port side and look for the City of Toul when the River Meuse shows up on his starboard. From there on it was child’s play to locate the aerodrome on the outskirts of the forest de Haye. Gaston brought them down safely and rolled to a stop on the grassy landing field of the aerodrome and then waited for his leader to return with the tales of courage and heroism.


"Take the cylinder out of my kidneys,
The connecting rod out of my brain, my brain,
From out of my arse take the camshaft,
And assemble the engine again."
#4457108 - 01/13/19 12:16 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Ajax, ON
12 January, 1916
Toul
Sergent Gaston A. Voscadeaux

Gaston knew each flight over the lines was dangerous with the Fokker monoplanes prowling the unfriendly skies. Thankfully they were sparse in these parts and the odds of encountering one were low. Besides, Gaston figured that the odds were in his favour anyway. He had two pairs of wings. Fokker had only one. He had two engines. Fokker had only one. He had two guns. Fokker just one. And finally he had the use of two pairs of eyes and the Fokker had only one. Why was he so preoccupied with the enemy scouts so much? It was because today would be his first flight over the lines into the lion’s den. Capitaine de Bondy was satisfied with Gaston’s ability to follow orders and put him on the active duty roster. His first combat mission would be to bomb factories at Pont a Mousson. He quickly marked the target on his map when it was announced at the briefing. Gaston listened carefully and learned he will fly as the wingman for Adjutant Mezergues. He was an agreeable chap from Dijon. The son of a banker, whose father was hell-bent on marrying him off, in order (as he put it) to settle down and cut down on the embarrassing affairs with women of questionable standing. The amount of suitable girls was staggering, but Mezergues wasn’t ready for matrimony and instead chose the military, with the war starting at the most opportune time. As he he cavalry has not seen much action ever since the trenches have been dug, he decided to join L’Aeronautique Militaire and try his luck there. Amazing that with his busy life of l’aviateur he was still able to keep three ladies in Toul. None of them had any idea of the existence of the other two. The lucky dog! Life of a military aviator has its privileges, but it definitely was not the life for Gaston.
He was now following Adjutant Mezergues over the Toul aerodrome having had just taken off and feeling for the first time the full weight of actual bombs slung underneath his Caudron. The bird didn’t feel as sprightly with the additional load, but Voscadeaux didn’t have too much trouble keeping up with the leader. Their two machines were approaching the initial waypoint when all of a sudden one of the leader’s engine begun to smoke. Gaston saw Mezergues make a quick turn back to the aerodrome trailing white smoke. He hoped his leader will make a safe landing. He would hate to see the Adjutant disappoint all three ladies at the same time. But what next? Should he also turn back, or fly to the front solo? He looked to his gunner for an answer. As if he had read his mind Ernest turned around to face him and gave a slight nod of his head in the direction of the Front. Gaston winked back at him and kept the machine on course. Yellow teeth flashed beneath the bushy beard of his gunner. Gaston was pretty sure Ernest was smiling. Adjutant Becquerel propped his elbows on the edge of the nacelle in the same fashion one would do when watching a street parade from the balcony of their apartment.
Voscadeaux followed the train tracks east and then north. Once they’ve reached the front lines he turned east again and aimed for the woods across the NML that he had marked on his map as the area where the factory would be located. He saw the trenches below, but it was quiet and no one paid any attention to the solitary flying machine. Becquerel checked his machine guns and took up his position. It was time to go to work. They have reached the area marked on the map but the factory was nowhere in sight. Gaston flew over once, twice and checked the map again. The factory wasn’t there. How he wished for some smoke from the chimneys to mark the spot, but there was nothing. Ernest looked back at Gaston perplexed and shrugged his shoulders in puzzlement. He couldn’t see it either. Clearly they were in the wrong spot. Gaston desperately started making circles over the target area, hoping to find the factory by chance. The circuits became larger and larger. The Caudron eventually flew too close to the enemy observation balloon and the anti-aircraft artillery below started to pepper the air around them with exploding shells leaving black pockmarks. This was a wake up call for Gaston and a lesson not to hang around the target for too long. He admitted defeat and decided to return to base with full armament. They were followed by angry Flak all the way to NML, reminding them of their failure. Gaston found his way back home easily by following the same train tracks that took him to the target. He was not proud of himself, blaming himself for this failure. Capitaine will certainly have something to say about that. He will have to do better next time. On arrival he saw the machine of Adjutant Mezergues sitting near one of the hangars being fussed over by the mechanics. The Casanova was alright.


"Take the cylinder out of my kidneys,
The connecting rod out of my brain, my brain,
From out of my arse take the camshaft,
And assemble the engine again."
#4457119 - 01/13/19 01:06 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: May 2012
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RAF_Louvert Offline
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L'Etoile du Nord
.

Fullofit, Gaston has discovered what so many WWI pilots have, that it can be damned tricky to sort out exactly where you are and actually find your intended targets thousands of feet below you. I've no doubt though that he'll get the hang of it, he seems a persistent fellow.

Scout, it sounds like Aleck's bombing mission was fairly typical in terms of its results. Getting the eggs close to the mark was about all anyone hoped for, and the explosions tended to cause more jangled nerves than anything else.

2nd Lt. Swanson had more bad luck in terms of engine reliability as he attempted, not once but twice, to complete his assigned sorties today. Both times the Le Rhône left him and his gunner/obs floating back to earth sans power. As most of the lads in camp knew of his Channel crossing incident, as well as his numerous engine failures while at Netheravon, (primarily because he himself had talked about it with individuals in camp), they ribbed him with assorted new nicknames. "Conk" and "Dead Stick" were bandied about a fair amount, but the one that has stuck is the moniker hung on him by his own flight mate, Lt. Dent. When the fellow walked into the mess this afternoon and spied Swany sitting at a far table, sipping at a cup of tea and reading a two-week old newspaper, the cheeky bugger called out, "Well if it isn't our own Lieutenant Swansong! There he is boys, if you want the engine in your bus to sing its last, just leave it in his capable hands." Given the roar of laughter that followed, Swany knew instantly he would be saddled with the handle for the foreseeable future.

.

#4457134 - 01/13/19 03:25 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: Dec 2012
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MFair Offline
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Lou, First blood and a new name to boot! Here is to a confirmation!

Scout, Oh how many times has that happened. Look away for a second and your flight has disappeared into a black hole. Congrats on completing the mission.

Fullofit, Finding the target can be tough!

Mark Jericho
Auchell aerodrome
Jan. 12, 1916

C Flight was scheduled for a bombing mission today. We were to hit Loos Junction a few miles over the lines. Jericho was back in top form and felt good. It was a beautiful day.


Shortly after takeoff Lt. Chambers, flight leader, signaled engine trouble and turned back. "What are we going to do now" Jericho thought. He question was soon answered when Alford signaled to form up on him and they headed to the target. Crossing the lines Jericho was surprised that there was no Archie. He had been told it could be a little troublesome but not to worry about it too much. He scanned the skies for any other machines. It was more difficult than he thought to stay in formation and scan at the same time but he was getting the hang of it. Looking down he saw a wood with a road going through it and realized they were getting close to the target. He swung in behind Alford as his plan was to drop his eggs when he did. No sooner had he done so he saw Alford's bombs release. He did the same and they both turned toward home.

The trip back was different. The Archie came up to meet them but as he had been told it was more of a show than anything else, mostly exploding behind and below them. Crossing over the lines Jericho realized how tense he was and relaxed. It was a good day.

Back at the field Auchell was buzzing. It seems his pard Swany and his observer had brought down a Hun! "Lucky rascal!" Jericho thought. At debrief Jericho and his observer, Capt. Whorton were told there mission was a rousing success causing heavy damage at the Railyard. "Excellent work!" they were told. As they left the building Whorton slapped Jericho on the back. "Good job Lt.!"

"Thank you Sir" Jericho replied as he went to find Swany to get the story on his Hun.


Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from either end.
BOC Member since....I can't remember!
#4457185 - 01/13/19 09:41 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Lou and MFair, missing the target with your bombs is one thing. Getting to the target area and not finding it is another.
Looks like engine trouble has its repercussions not only for Gaston but for Swany as well. Kids can be so mean.
Jericho has his head screwed on his shoulders pretty well. Following the leader and releasing his bombs at the same time is a sound tactic. This works as long as he’s not in the lead. One of those days he’ll have to make use of that bombsight. Better start practicing.

13 January, 1916
Toul, Verdun Sector
Sergent Gaston A. Voscadeaux

As expected, the CO was not impressed with Gaston’s performance yesterday, but that’s just it: that was yesterday. Today is a new day that presents new challenges. Two new surprises waited for him this morning. First was a letter from his wife Violette, who enclosed her picture with the news from home. Gaston had asked for her photograph when he was visiting this Christmas. He will pin the picture to the Caudron’s instrument panel, so that he can keep her close every time he flies.
The second surprise was not so pleasant. After hearing about Gaston’s inability to find the target yesterday, someone on the base thought it would be funny to leave a pair of old glasses for him. They were sitting in the mess hall on the table where Gaston usually ate his meals. There was a note attached to the glasses: Pour Papa Avocado.
Gaston was nervous when the mission target was announced and he revealed how he felt to Adj. Mezergues, who would lead B flight again today. Gabriel, who felt partially responsible for yesterday’s fiasco tried to put Gaston at ease and explained that finding rail yards was much easier than factories. All they had to do is follow the train tracks. Seemed simple enough and hopefully this time around Mezergues would lead them all the way to the target and back.
The sky was relatively clear with only a few clouds here and there. Gaston found the gusts of wind more of a challenge, preventing him from keeping a tight formation. He preferred to keep a healthy distance for the fear of crashing the ships into each other. Sgt. Levy in A flight did not have any problems with keeping formation as he was the only member of that flight and disappeared from view shortly after take off. On the way, they’ve picked up two single-seat scouts as escorts. Wow, those Nieuport 10’s sure looked pretty! Gaston continued to look up and behind to catch one more glimpse of the fighters and imagined what it would be like to fly one of them.
Just as Adj. Mezergues pointed out, finding the rail yard system at Verdun NE junction was made simple by following the tracks all the way in. The leader initiated the bombing run and Gaston followed as close as he dared. They dropped their two 30kg bombs one after another and as they passed overhead they were treated to a fireworks display. All bombs found the target and the entire station was engulfed in black smoke, dust, earth and flaming debris. Gaston was shocked how much damage their bombs inflicted, but soon realized that they must’ve hit the train carrying ammunition. The damage was significant. There was little time to admire their handiwork as the Flak batteries attempted to even the score. Thick black clouds of acrid smoke enveloped their machines and followed them all the way until they flew out of range. Gaston kept close to Mezergues’ machine at full throttle until they both passed the frontlines on their way out. He relaxed only after all the puffs of smoke had disappeared and on the way to the aerodrome started to think that maybe the damage done to this rail yard will in some small way redeem him for yesterday’s mission.
Maybe “Papa Avocado” won’t stick either?


"Take the cylinder out of my kidneys,
The connecting rod out of my brain, my brain,
From out of my arse take the camshaft,
And assemble the engine again."
#4457199 - 01/13/19 11:19 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: Dec 2012
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MFair Offline
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Nice job Fullofit, seems the squad will have to come up with a new name for Gaston!


Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from either end.
BOC Member since....I can't remember!
#4457208 - 01/14/19 12:31 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: Aug 2010
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carrick58 Offline
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Nigel Archibald Notting
Sgt, RFC
4 Sqn Rfc.
Allonville, Flanders


13 Jan 1916.

Well , we finally got some help and a few Horses on the 12th and managed to pull most of the ship over to a road. should have whats left rigged and headed for the aerodrome by tonight.

Attached Files RAF-RE8-Crash-WWI-British-Reconnaissance-Bomber.jpg
Last edited by carrick58; 01/14/19 12:31 AM.
#4457214 - 01/14/19 01:32 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: MFair]  
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Originally Posted by MFair
Nice job Fullofit, seems the squad will have to come up with a new name for Gaston!

MFair, that might be tough. Tomorrow, they’re going to bomb another factory. Gaston is likely to be nervous.
Carrick, you should have landed on the road. biggrin


"Take the cylinder out of my kidneys,
The connecting rod out of my brain, my brain,
From out of my arse take the camshaft,
And assemble the engine again."
#4457273 - 01/14/19 05:03 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: Aug 2010
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carrick58 Offline
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Ha Ha

#4457319 - 01/14/19 10:13 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: May 2012
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Vancouver Island, Canada
Aleck A. MacKinlay
January 13, 1916

A cold and sunny morning. Assigned to ferry Chris to the frontlines for artillery spotting. This was my first such mission but fortunately Chris is an old hand at it and I am just his chauffeur. Second Lt. Carwin (a.k.a. Krazy Kaleb) would accompany us in an FE2b for protection, and Captain Davis would be in the area hunting enemy aircraft in his Bristol Scout. If an enemy scout was seen my instructions were to NOT run for home but to stay close to Carwin and let him protect our tail.

As it turned out, we saw no other aircraft on the entire 70 minute mission. The only noteworthy occurrence was some engine excitement. During our climb to operational height (5000 ft) the engine began to make several disturbing noises; a steady knocking, a jangling of some loose metal bracket, and an intermittent 'fart' sound. We could see no errant oil leaks and the oil pressure remained good, while the engine maintained rpms and power. We pressed on and the engine, despite the cacophony of clunks, did it's job and got us home.

Photo: Nearby Droglandt airfield; quite fancy!
http://SimHQ.com/forum/tmp/13304.jpg

Attached Files 2019.01.14 - 12.45.33.51.jpg
Last edited by 77_Scout; 01/14/19 10:14 PM.
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