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#4457349 - 01/15/19 03:09 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Scout, you’re taking chances with that “worn out” engine. It only takes a moment to have a flambé Aleck.

14 January, 1916 9:05
Toul, Verdun Sector
Sergent Gaston A. Voscadeaux

There were some hoots and sniggers this morning at the mission briefing, when it was announced that B flight will be bombing a factory at Vigneulles les Hottonchatel. Some pilots were whispering to each other and secretly pointing in Gaston’s direction. He didn’t pay any attention to that and quite frankly he was fed up with the jabs. Instead, he concentrated on the factory location marked on the map hanging on the wall. He would be led by Adjutant Guytant to the target, but just in case the leader had to turn back, he would be prepared. Sergeant Reille would complete the formation. The baby of the Escadrille needed to get his feet wet after completing his pilot training. At 19, Niels Reille was the youngest pilot in the squad and just like Gaston joined the outfit after the new year.
They were all in the air and heading for the first waypoint following Guytant with Reille lagging behind. Gaston noted the clouds gathering in the north which most likely will obscure the target. This did not bode well for the success of the mission and the factories being an elusive target for him. “Well, let’s not be so pessimistic.” Gaston was trying to think positively. “Let’s concentrate on getting there first. Where is Niels?” Gaston scanned the rear quarters for the new guy when he wasn’t joining the formation, but couldn’t see him. “What if he’s flying somewhere very close and I can’t see him? Below? What I need now is a collision”. Gaston made another scan of the surrounding airspace to no avail. He didn’t realize Sgt. Reille needed to turn back and nurse an ailing engine back down to the aerodrome.
The reduced by one machine formation reached the factories without any problems or encountering any enemy planes. Gaston was able to get some good near misses and Adj. Guytant bombs did about the same amount of damage. The return trip was just as uneventful. Gaston was happy to see Sgt. Reille was able to bring his wounded bird back home in one piece, albeit out of commission for two days. All’s well that ends well.


"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."
#4457350 - 01/15/19 03:11 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Some wonderful stories are maturing. I am thoroughly enjoying Fullofit's cast of characters at Escadrille C17. Maeran, your Christmas story was a tour de force -- but I have come to expect such things from you. Lady Diana Baldwin sent me scrambling t0 see if she married some unknown pilot, but alas! I was interested to discover she was a cousin of Rudyard Kipling. And her father, before becoming Prime Minister, served as parliamentary secretary to Andrew Bonar Law, who was born just a few miles from my home outside Rexton, New Brunswick, Canada. Ace_Pilto, I'm looking forward to Drongo's meeting with his "connection." Lou, congratulations on the claimed Fokker. Your description of how it fell out of control foreshadowed your similar effect on Mark Jericho - MFair will have to steer his boy clear of akvavit in the future. Maybe you can use it in your hut's lanterns instead! Carrick, that was a really close call! Take care, my friend. And Hasse, another brilliant episode. Nice to see your man chauffeured to the front by Gustav Leffers!

Jim Collins has finally started his war...

An Airman’s Odyssey – by James Arthur Collins

Part Ten: In which I take up my sword, meet Archie, and rejoin some old friends

Despite the filthy weather, I managed several more hours on the Morane in the safe confines of St-Omer. Men came and went, yet each morning I pursued the same routine. I rose, washed up in cold water, shaved in tepid water, and dressed for the long walk to the pilots’ pool mess. There I received some bread that I could toast myself at the stove, some weak tea, the ubiquitous plum and apple jam, and a lone hard-boiled egg. There was always the offer of porridge, but I have never been able to keep the stuff down. “Try it with brown sugar,” a chap said. First, there was no brown sugar in sight, and second, anything one must try with brown sugar to get down is certain to be vile.

From there I would return to my hut to bundle up against the elements, pulling on fleece combinations, a silk undershirt, a cotton shirt, heavy twill trousers, a cable knit (non-regulation) sweater, the spencer I’d bought in Salisbury, my fur-lined brown leather flying coat, and chamois and fur-lined cap. I had finally been issued with a pair of the fine “boots, knee, clumsy” which were much warmer than anything else I had put on my feet to date.

Thence to the hangars. There were times when only a BE was available. Patrick had told me only the best pilots were assigned to Moranes, so I pushed for our lone Parasol whenever I could. Still, there were several days when, dressed for real work, I whiled away the hours chatting with the ack emmas and smoking cigarettes and waiting for the sleet and high winds to abate.

On 11 January 1916, I’d just landed from a long flight in the Parasol (in which I’d flown to the east far enough to make out a long brown stain on the horizon – the front!) when word came that a tender would be picking me up in thirty minutes and to have my kit packed. I rushed to my hut and threw everything I owned together, and then sprinted to the offices for orders. Patrick was out for lunch and a dazed corporal shuffled papers for several minutes before uncovering a brown envelope with my name on it. I was bound for 3 Squadron – the same Morane outfit as Swany Swanson!

A driver arrived with an officer from the squadron in tow. It took a second or two to register. The fellow who jumped down from the tender as though dismounting from a horse was lean and lanky and tanned. It was my old cowboy pal from Long Branch and Netheravon, Mark Jericho!

“Took you long enough to get here, partner,” he said with an impish grin.

“I told them I knew you and they didn’t want to let me in France,” I replied. Jericho gave me a playful punch in the chest that I wasn’t ready for. It nearly knocked me down.

“Let’s get out of here. I’m due on patrol in a couple of hours,” he said. “You know that Swany’s with us too, don’t you?” We were bound for a place called Auchel, which was halfway to Arras, an hour’s drive away on the icy pavé. The tender threaded its way through squalid low villages of red brick row houses, small farm buildings with giant manure heaps, and squat stone churches. Everywhere the machinery of war clogged the roads: horses, oxen, wagons, men and more men. Ragged children and women in long aprons and clogs watched the passing show.

The aerodrome sat beside a small straight stretch of road at the edge of Auchel, not far from the neighbouring village of Lozinghem. Rolling hills bordered the town and field, an unusual feature in this otherwise flat part of France. Auchel was a mining town. Steam and smoke curled in grey ribbons from the pitheads with their hoist towers. In the muddy streets. pitmen shuffled home in their grimy blue dungarees and odd, flat wide-brimmed hats, looking like sooty versions of Sancho Panza. A little to the south of the field, two slag-heaps rose like grey pyramids from the countryside. I made a mental note of these, in case we ever had fog.

A row of sturdy wooden hangars lined the southwest edge of the field, which would be a challenge. High ground on one side, buildings on the other, and of course the towering slag-heaps – someone had an evil sense of humour. There was a large wooden building that housed the squadron office and mess. It seemed that the officers and men were, for the most part, billeted in houses behind the office. I made my way to the office and dropped my bag inside the door. Two officers bent over a table near the back wall, examining papers. A corporal clerk banged away on a typewriter. After a minute, one of the officers – they both wore major’s rank – looked up and smiled.

“I say, you’re the new man from Depot. Collins, is it?” I saluted and answered affirmatively. This major had a thin and aristocratic face. “You’ve joined a fine unit, Mr. Collins. Are you up to it?”

“I hope so,” I said, rather weakly or so I thought at the moment.

“Well, you shan’t have me to deal with, I’m afraid. This is Major Harvey-Kelly. He is taking over as your commander as of...” He took out his watch. “Bay, you’re the pukka sahib now, I’m afraid.” Bay was a nickname, I assumed, but its meaning was lost on me.

Major “Bay” grinned and winked in my direction. “Well, then,” he said. “Time to clean up this bloody mess.” Harvey-Kelly had the face of an impudent schoolboy, but he wore the crimson and blue ribbon of the Distinguished Service Order. I was to learn later that he was the first officer of the RFC to land in France. He turned to the orderly corporal and sent him to fetch someone to show me my billet.

“Get settled in and I’ll meet you in A Flight’s hangar in an hour. We’ll need you on patrol as soon as possible and I want you up at once to see the area from the air.”

The billet was scarcely 200 yards from the field, a narrow house of red brick with yellow brick facings around the door and windows. The owners were a couple in their sixties by the name of Poirier. M. Poirier spoke no English and barely intelligible French, but Madame spoke slowly and clearly and I understood that they had two sons, one who was blessé in Paris and the other of whom was dans les tranchées au sud. M. Poirier had a fitful cough and was, I assumed, a former miner. There was another officer in the house, a chap named Bob Lillywhite. He was taciturn and I suppose pleasant enough. Shy, I think, but hardly welcoming. I changed quickly into my flying gear and trudged over to the field.

At the hangar, the Major introduced me to Russel, my observer, who had been in France three weeks. The Major listened while Russel briefed me.

“On takeoff, you’ll fly into the slight rise and trees across the way if you’re not careful. Clear those poplars and level off until you get bags of speed.”

“You’ll need a bit of right rudder under load,” added the Major.

Russel continued. “Climb to 2500 feet before turning east. As you continue to climb, you should see Bethune off the port left side. Don’t pass Bethune or we’ll end up in Berlin. Turn north until we see the Lys. At the river, come back west until the river takes a bow south towards the La Bassée Canal. Don’t go all the way until the canal and river meet. That’s too far west. If you turn south at that bow in the river, you’ll come back directly to Auchel. You might see the road running to Lozinghem and pick up the field, but long before then you’ll see the terrils.”

“The what?” I asked.

“The terrils. Bloody great slag heaps. They’re on the south and east of the town. You’ll want to be gliding into the field long before you approach Auchel. There is a bit of a ridge at the north end of the field, and you’ll need to come in just over the crest to settle down properly.”

“Piece of cake,” I said, not meaning a word of it.

Russel stared at me. “Kill me and I’ll haunt you and yours forever, Collins.”

I took off and did the circuit, following Russel’s directions exactly. I even managed a three-point landing despite the ridge. Russel shook my hand and the major, who was watching from the step of the office, nodded and went inside.

That night there was a raucous send-off for Major Ludlow-Hewitt, whom I understood to be well respected. Once the former CO’s car had removed his besotted carcass, the real party began. To my surprise, the rowdiest man of the lot was the new squadron commander. Harvey-Kelly’s party piece was to declare a selzer battle, from which no man emerged dry. I retired into the night to hunt for the billet shared by Jericho, Swany, and two others. Neither Jericho nor Swany were drinkers, and I expected to find them up. They were in one of the few huts that had been built on the field. When I got there, Jericho was writing a letter and Swany was already asleep. He’d put in a claim for a Fokker this morning and had been “over-served” at dinner.

Jericho brewed a coffee on the pot-bellied stove and added a heaping spoon of sugar. I seldom drank the stuff, but this mug was delicious. There were two armchairs and we sat the shadows cast by a guttering candle and traded life stories, his much more interesting than mine. He spoke of his introduction to “Archie,” as anti-aircraft fire was universally named. In the few days he’d been here, two pilots and their observers had gone missing. He warned me of the dangers of flying over Lille and of failing to check for the “Hun in the sun.”

The next morning I accompanied the Major and Sergeant Bayetto in a three-machine formation. Word had come down within the past few days that all aircraft with objectives over the lines were to fly in formation. It was a new experience and very much harder than I anticipated, requiring complex adjustment of throttle and mixture to keep station. I would settle in for a minute or two and then Major Harvey-Kelly would turn slightly and it would take another five minutes to regain my position.

[Linked Image]
Sgt Toni Bayetto

We were destined for a rail junction far to the south. I resolved to keep things simple and did not take my eyes off the Major, even relying on him to show me where and when to drop my four Hales bombs. I did not even see our target. If truth be told, any old Hun could have flown up behind me and thrown stones at my machine with impunity, for not once do I recall looking about. I relied for my protection entirely on Russel in the rear seat. I was startled by a loud "whump," followed by three more in close succession. Black greasy puffs appeared a few hundred feet in front of the Morane. The leader turned slightly to avoid the next eruption of whumps. "Good morning, Archie," I said to myself. By focusing on the leader I managed to suppress the wind-up. We landed nearly two hours after we took off. The good news was that we apparently hit the target, saw no air Huns, and I remained more or less in formation all the way.

[Linked Image]
"'Good morning, Archie,' I said to myself."

The next day, 14 January, we flew south to the Somme sector to drop more bombs, this time on Hun artillery positions behind Pozières. For the first time I saw other machines in the air (other that those I flew alongside, that is). I saw a lone Morane returning home and, after we dropped our bombs, I saw three dots a few miles to the east. One approached us and passed by while we re-formed west of Bapaume. It turned out to be a lone BE2. The other two were certainly Huns, for when they saw us they dived away to the east and vanished.

The front is a nightmare landscape. For a mile or two on each side of the trench lines the ground is horribly torn. Whole villages are smashed into brick dust and rubble. Roads and rail lines disappear. In the Somme area, the trenches stand out as pale lines, the soil bleached by the upturned chalk. A million shell craters catch the water or snow and ice. The world is plague-scarred.

Attached Files Archie.pngToni Bayetto.png
#4457367 - 01/15/19 10:39 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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2nd Lieutenant Stanley rode alone in the first class carriage of the train to Dover. There were only a few soldiers travelling out to France at this port. Stanley himself was not going via the bitterly cold ferry crossing. His way was even more bitterly cold.
Stanley was warm in his lonely carriage for now. He smiled as he remembered his final exchange with Diana.
The young debutante had met him at Victoria station prior to his departure.
“I bought you this,” Diana said, as she proffered an envelope. It was distorted slightly by something inside.
“No. Don’t open it yet,” she told him. “Open it on the train.”
William looked into Diana’s eyes, “The past few days have been very important to me. I want you to know that, Diana. I have been preparing to go back to France for so long, and here at the last you have given me a reason to regret going.”
Diana gave him a mock serious look, tilting her head forward and pouting. “Now William. You know it is right and proper to do your duty by your country. I am so proud of you! I hope that you can return as soon as you can so that we might... renew our acquaintance?” Her alabaster hand gently touched the back of his.
“I hope for nothing else, Diana.” Stanley checked the clock, “I have to go. I will write as soon as I can, so that you know how to find me.”
Tears were welling in Diana’s eyes, “please do, please do. And William, one more thing...”
Leaning forward, she kissed him on the lips. It was only for a moment, but it was a moment that blazed in Stanley’s memory.

As the train pulled away from the station, Stanley opened the envelope. Inside was a brooch in the shape of Pegasus, a photograph of Diana smiling gently and a letter.

My William, Every soldier should have a photograph of his sweetheart. I hope that I am not wrong in presuming that I am yours, even after so little time. But as you intend to make yourself some manner of knight in the skies, you should have an appropriate favour from your lady. Did you know that Pegasus was also a twin? His brother was called Chrysaor. This badge has a counterpart that will not leave my person. I hope to show it to you soon when you come back to me victorious. Be careful! Diana.

Stanley re-read the letter several times. He wondered who Chrysaor was for a while and went back to remembering Diana’s kiss.

Dover aerodrome was set behind the mess of barracks and other military facilities near the imposing castle. He reported to the duty office.
“Have you ever flown across the channel before?” The adjutant looked at Stanley in his new flying coat that still creaked as he moved,
“No,” Stanley replied. “After that climb past the castle, I think that nothing will daunt me though.”
“It is a bit steep,” admitted the adjutant. “My advice is climb as high as you can. Don’t even set out to sea before you hit six thousand. Also, you are only going tomorrow.”
“Tomorrow!”
“Not enough daylight now. Get some rest and report here at dawn and we’ll send you off.”

[Linked Image]
1st Wing Headquarters, Aire Sur-la-Lys.
The Château occupied by 1 Wing RFC was a place of refined French tastes, which served as a background to the tedium of administration. Stanley sat in one of the salons waiting for any instruction to come. He had thumbed through a book on the life of Wellington that had been left amongst the month old newspapers. He had just found an interesting episode involving Tipu Sultan when a stern faced officer opened the door and admitted another pilot.
“Hullo,” the newcomer broke the silence of the waiting room. “Have you been here long?”
Stanley put the book face down and smiled at the new arrival. “I’ve only been here a day. I ferried a BE2 in to St Omer only to be packed off here. They said I was urgently needed. I’ve been in this salon ever since.”
“That’s the army for you.” The other pilot offered his hand, “Le Blanc-Smith, how d’you do.”
“Stanley. Delighted to meet you. Are you just out too?”
“Oh no. I’ve been with 18 for 2 months. I’m just here on squadron business. Any idea where you’re headed?”
“16 I think. Unless they change their mind.”
“They probably won’t.“

Le Blanc-Smith was called away after 20 minutes, leaving Stanley to wait alone once more. Finally there was a stirring in the next room and William was summoned. His tender had arrived.
The Crossley trundled for half an hour of wet and grey country lanes before a sign indicated that the little town ahead was Merville. The town had the usual French traffic, but in this time of war, Stanley noticed that there were many British soldiers walking along lanes or sat outside cafés.
“Resting behind the lines,” the driver explained over his shoulder.
“Yes, I’ve been here before,” Stanley replied, watching two Tommies trying to negotiate with a washerwoman. “Or somewhere like it.”

After driving through the town and back out amongst the farms, the tender turned right onto a deeply rutted track. Up ahead was a russet coloured farmhouse with a few lorries parked outside. Beyond them, a cluster of canvas tents stood before the poplar lined river.
“Merville aerodrome sir,” the driver told Stanley. “Not much to look at, but we are expanding across the river.”
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Stepping into the farmhouse, Stanley found the rooms being used as the squadron offices. They had clearly been a sitting room and a parlour before the RFC took over. The farmer’s furniture had been pushed against a wall to fit desks in. A 2nd Lt with wings on his tunic was acting ass adjutant.

“2nd Lieutenant Stanley, reporting for duty.”
The adjutant looked up glumly. “Oh? A new one.” He waved for an orderly. “Take 2nd Lieutenant Stanley to the barge and give him the empty cabin.” The adjutant then returned to his paperwork.
“Barge?” Stanley asked, but the adjutant ignored him.
“This way sir,” the orderly took Stanley’s bags and beckoned him outside.

“Please don’t mind Lieutenant Ward sir,” the orderly said once they were outside the farmhouse. “He doesn’t mean it. The barge he mentioned is down here.” The man gestured toward the river. “The officer’s have their lodgings and their mess there. The old aerodrome is here to our right.” The orderly nodded to a small field by the river with hangars on the far side. “You might fly from here, but we have been moving across the river. It’s bigger.”
[Linked Image]
The barge was a large boat that had originally been laid down as a cargo barge but fitted as hospital accommodation before the CO of 16 squadron had acquired it somehow for his officers. It was large and spacious and afforded good views. Unfortunately it was the depths of winter and the view was miserable. Across the river and downstream a large open field had more tents, and hangars visible. Some men were busy building a wooden hut.
“That’s the new field sir,” the porter indicated across the river. Beaupré farm, but they’ve taken to calling it ‘La Gorgue.’”



A week had passed since he had arrived at La Gorgue, but to Stanley time had dragged into a tortuous eternity. It seemed that no-one would talk to him. His attempts to make friends had been shrugged off. Not that anyone was very friendly with each other. Captain Gould of A flight gruffly rebuffed any attempt at conversation. Bodham-Whetham of B flight was Stanley’s flight commander, but he seemed to be avoiding him. Stanley didn’t even know who was in charge of C flight.

The Major was somehow worse. Dowding would mutter something to officers every now and again, but he didn’t seem to show any interest in their answers. They called him ‘stuffed shirt,’ and complained about how bad he was for moral.
Stanley had been up for a few familiarisation flights in a BE2c. The west airfield was a tiny L shaped field that was looked terrible to get back onto. Across the river the new field was... unusual.
On the marshy ground between two rivers, four runways had been laid out in grey ashes. They looked like a crude union flag on the earth. The ground was marshy and any attempt to land outside the ash lines would result in the wheels bogging down. Or the aeroplane tipping over in a drainage ditch.

After the first two days bad weather had stopped all flying. Since no-one wanted to talk to him, Stanley found the waiting miserable.

“Things look like they're clearing up,” Major Dowding mumbled to his captains at dinner. “Arrange crews for the morning. There is a lot of work outstanding.”

“Veitch, Stanley, Thayre, Hardy, Storey. In the flight office at 7 on the dot.” Boddam-Whetham warned his flight.
For the rest of the evening Stanley could barely contain his excitement. They were going to do something. His first sortie!

[Linked Image]
Three BE2cs plodded through scattered cloud on their way to their assigned batteries. They were in a group now but Stanley knew that they would split up over the batteries to observe different guns and range them for the artillery.
When the trio were over St Villers. Stanley was watching the ground below in fascination. The way that the trenches stood out from the air amazed him. He had spent time in trenches, but had never realised how obvious their positions were to aerial observation.

There was a sudden noise that startled Stanley from his reverie. Three monoplanes were right behind the BE2s and were shooting at them!

Stanley’s heart was in his mouth. He pushed the stick forward and the aeroplane dove abruptly. Then he pushed on the rudder and swerved before regaining some altitude. He looked around for the Eindekker even as his observer, Storey, heaved on the Lewis gun and tried to get a bead on something nearby.

Stanley saw a trail of smoke and was surprised to see that it was a monoplane, curving away. Another Eindekker was flying away eastwards. Storey pointed down and to Stanley’s right.

The last Eindekker was chasing Thayre and Hardy. Hardy was firing away with his Lewis gun, but the black crossed machine was flying low, hiding below the tail of the British machine.
[Linked Image]
Stanley dived and throttled back. Slowly the Eindekker came into Storey’s field of fire. The captain fired off a brief burst. Even over the roar of the engine, the rattle of the machine gun was painfully load above Stanley’s head.

The Eindekker dived away and turned eastwards. The BE2s were alone again in the sky.

When C flight finally landed back at La Gorgue, Stanley excitedly ran over to check on Thayre and Hardy.
“Did we get that one?”
“I dont’ think we can claim anything,” Hardy replied. “He left before things got dangerous for him. Thanks for encouraging him to ****er off.”

----------------------------------------
----------------------------------------
Good stories gents. And congratulations on the first claim Lou.
I was lucky. I was too busy looking at the ground to think about the sky. The Eindekkers really did get the jump on me. Luckily he was a rotten shot or I wouldn’t have had time to dodge.
Historically, Diana married an army captain in 1919. Maybe it didn't work out with William. Maybe it did but he didn't survive DiD. We shall have to see...

#4457390 - 01/15/19 03:02 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Raine and Maeran, with no disrespect to anyone else, you two are a pair of very fine writers! Excellent stories Gents. Congrats on surviving your 1st combat Maeran.

My hardy thanks to Raine for putting on this DID Campaign. I don't know what it is. Maybe the stories, flying with my peers, or who knows, but there is nothing that gives me a feeling of flying in the war but this. Thanks again mate!


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!
#4457393 - 01/15/19 03:07 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Well - I'm back from my Blighty! Apologies for being gone so long, medical complications and the like, you know! Congratulations on drawing first blood, Lou!

Sgt. Graham A. Campbell
No. 20. Squadron R.F.C,
Netheravon, England.

3: Farewell, England...

January 15th, 1916.


Netheravon was near-silent as I stepped into the shining morning dew. For the past week, our aerodrome has been a manic scene, as the truck convoys set to ferry our equipment to France have been darting to-and-fro like so many ants in a colony, and the aeroplane mechanics have been losing sleep - working into ungodly hours of the night, sometimes only by candle-light, to prepare our machines to be flown over. During this time, naturally, not much flying has been done, and so we have been entertaining ourselves with frequent trips back to the Dorothy Cafe, and the comforts of its tea selection and Piano. It seems that we have our player in Pearson, who has led us into several sing-alongs! At first Missus Baker, the hard-faced, rotund wife of the Dorothy's owner (who is currently in France himself), didn't care much at all for our rowdy antics, but now I rather think she enjoys the homely atmosphere. Funnily enough, she has become almost like an auntie to us, occasionally joining in our sing-songs and fretting over us in an endearing staccato cockney tone. "'Ello, my lovelys!" she says as we arrive each day, "What are you going to play us today, then, Wallace? Oh my, Raymond! You're looking awfully thin - don't they feed you proper in the army?". Raymond, or Switch-off, has become particularly attached to Missus Baker, and I rather think she has become something closer to a mother-figure for him. The poor lad, only fifteen, has been suffering from bouts of homesickness recently. The lord only knows how he will fare in France! While we sit at our table by the piano, Switch-off goes round the back to wash dishes with our welcoming host.

Upon Missus Baker's recommendation, I seem to have developed a particular fondness for green tea, and it has become my regular selection off of the 'Dainty Teas' menu, and she has promised to gift me a tin of the stuff to take with me to France.

All in all, life at Netheravon had become very pleasant indeed! We had settled into our routine, and between Pearson's sing-alongs and Jacky-Boy's scandalous late-night stories, we have all developed a wonderful sense of Camaraderie. This seems to transcend rank, as my observer, Cpt. Edith, has even joined our merry gang at the Cafe! At first this made some of us uncomfortable - we had not previously known a Captain willing to fraternise with the lower ranks, much less a Sergeant such as Jimmy Reynard, Archer or myself! But, the cheery Scotsman has become a welcome addition to our mob. But, yesterday, at Noon, the trucks all abruptly packed up and left for Dover. An hour later, the Major assembled the pilots and observers in the Officers' mess (which - by the way - is a perfect picture of luxury! Unlike our modest Sergeants' mess!), and told us the news. The news.

Tomorrow, we were bound for France.


And so, today we headed to the Dorothy for the final time, to say our good-byes and have one last sing-song. It was a solemn affair - although we were chomping at the bit to finally get to the war, none of us wanted to have to leave behind the comforts of our little Cafe, or the pleasantries of its current owner. For that last song, all of us wrapped in a combination of excitement, sorrow, fear, happiness, homesickness, and other emotions, we (including Missus Baker) sung out loudly to the tune of 'There's a Long, Long trail'. I must admit, I was very moved by the experience. I think we all were - and poor Switch-off had to turn away from us to hide the tears in his eyes.

After a final cup of green tea, much to our surprise, the ever-thoughtful Missus Baker presented us all with a small parting gift. For myself - that tin of green tea, which I must endeavour to ration in France. Jacky-Boy was given a tin of regular tea. For Cpt. Edith, a small brass thistle broach, a small reminder of his home country. Pearson, of course, was given several pages of sheet music, which had previously belonged to Mr. Baker before the war, but perhaps the greatest gift of all was bestowed upon Switch-off, who was given a striking red scarf, which Missus Baker had knitted herself in secret, specifically for the young lad.

Later in the day, as I watched Switch-off and his observer ascend in F.E.2 A6332 and swing around towards France, his red scarf around his neck, I felt a sudden pang of stark terror on the boy's behalf. Oh, how young he was, and there he went, off to war! But, I had no time to dwell on the feeling, for Edith and I were up next. Our orders are to ferry one of the B.Es to No. 1 Aircraft Depot, where we would exchange it for another F.E.2.

By the end of the day, we will be in France, and War.


Last edited by Wulfe; 01/15/19 03:08 PM.

Aircraft Profiles of the Deep Immersion DiD Campaign: http://simhq.com/forum/ubbthreads.p...deep-immersion-did-challenge#Post4468813
#4457396 - 01/15/19 03:21 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: May 2012
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lederhosen Offline
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Germany
ahh crap...and I mean crap.

FFA9b is grounded due to all pilots having the "Runs"

n.b wife and 2 kids all came down with the flu... oh well

Last edited by lederhosen; 01/15/19 03:21 PM.

make mistakes and learn from them

I5 4440 3.1Ghz, Asrock B85m Pro3, Gtx 1060 3GB
#4457430 - 01/15/19 06:58 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Maeran Online content
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Maeran  Online Content
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UK
Oh dear. Get well soon to all at Jasta Lederhosen.

#4457443 - 01/15/19 08:08 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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77_Scout Offline
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Vancouver Island, Canada
RFC-6
January 14, 1916
Post-Action Report by Flight Leader Lt. James Jones

The assigned patrol of enemy frontlines was completed by myself and Sgt White. Second Lieutenant MacKinlay had to turned back with engine trouble as we approached the lines and did not appear to have enough height to make it back to Abeele.

As of this evening, pilot MacKinlay and observer Bathurst are officially listed as missing.

#4457477 - 01/16/19 12:07 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: lederhosen]  
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Raine Online content
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Raine  Online Content
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New Brunswick, Canada
Poor Lederhosen. He's "flying by the seat of his pants" again!

Get well soon.

#4457479 - 01/16/19 12:16 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: 77_Scout]  
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Maeran Online content
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Maeran  Online Content
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Originally Posted by 77_Scout

As of this evening, pilot MacKinlay and observer Bathurst are officially listed as missing.


Oh please let the next bit be an amusing storey about MacKinlay and Bathurst being forced to land in the grounds of a vinyard and having to drink themselves free. It's too early for our first casualty.

Fingers crossed

#4457501 - 01/16/19 08:22 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Ace_Pilto Offline
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Sector ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha
They're probably shacked up with some Frenchies, sipping Ordinaire and making eyes at their daughter.


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

Wenn ihr sieg im deine Kampf selbst gegen, wirst schwer wie stahl sein.
#4457552 - 01/16/19 06:35 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Fullofit Offline
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Ajax, ON
15 January, 1916 9:02
Toul, Verdun Sector
Sergent Gaston A. Voscadeaux

It was a lucky hit. What are the odds when the Flak is so sporadic, so scattered? Nevertheless, it was a hit. Sergent Reille’s machine arched toward the ground on its side like a wounded beast keeling over. The anti-aircraft fire started as they were crossing the lines. Gaston was leading Reille on a bombing run to a troop camp near Mars-la-Tour aerodrome. He always regarded the black puffs of smoke as harmless. More to scare the adversary rather than to hurt. He was proven wrong this morning when he saw the young pilot dive trailing smoke. He still had a job to do. His hands were shaking and he insisted it was because of the engine vibrations. He scanned the sky around him again. Sergent Levy in A flight was trailing him at a higher altitude. Gaston concentrated. The troop camp was coming up ahead. The numerous tents were casting long shadows, making them much more visible. There were only a few small clouds nearby and none over the target. Voscadeaux’s bombs impacted in the middle of the encampment. He didn’t linger and could only imagine the mayhem below. Gaston was already heading back south when he saw Levy drop his bombs and turn back as well. These bombs also found the camp below. There was more Flak on the way and Gaston made sure he would not be an easy target. The weaving disturbed Adjutant Becquerel in the front seat. He gave Gaston the look, but the pilot decided to ignore him. Gaston didn’t want to end up like Reille. Voscadeaux and Levy both returned to base safely, but there was no sign of his wingman. The news came just before noon. The bodies of Reille and his gunner, de Neufville, were being brought back to the aerodrome.


"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."
#4457573 - 01/16/19 09:34 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: May 2012
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77_Scout Offline
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Vancouver Island, Canada
Dispatch from A.D.M.S Headquarters, Brielen Church, 3rd Division, 2nd Army.
To RFC-6, Abeele Airfield

Pleased to let you know that we have in our care Pilot 2nd-Lt Aleck MacKinley and Observer 2nd-Lt Christopher Bathurst. Both officers are alive and well, with the exception of minor injuries suffered in a landing accident adjacent to Brielen Church, NW of Ypres city outskirts. They wish us to report that the engine of their aircraft was destroyed in-flight as a result of internal explosion, and that a resulting engine fire was quickly blown out by diving of the machine. A landing was affected adjacent to our facility (HQ for Assistant Director of Medical Services) but collision with unseen telegraph wires upended the craft onto its nose with heavy damage. Pilot MacKinlay has a slight concussion and should remain here (until cleared for medically safe travel) for a few days. Observer Bathurst has bruised ribs but is prepared to return immediately to your command and requests a lorry be dispatch to retrieve himself and any salvageable portions of the aircraft.

Photos: Gliding towards Brielen Church after engine and prop blew up, Up-Ended by Telegraph lines
http://SimHQ.com/forum/tmp/13336.png http://SimHQ.com/forum/tmp/13337.png

Attached Files Combat Flight Simulator 3 Screenshot 2019.01.15 - 11.33.11.34.pngCombat Flight Simulator 3 Screenshot 2019.01.15 - 11.34.16.81.png
Last edited by 77_Scout; 01/18/19 04:08 AM.
#4457578 - 01/16/19 10:29 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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MFair Offline
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Scout, great news! It’s way too early to start loosing pilots. That was a close one.


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!
#4457587 - 01/16/19 10:53 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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Raine Online content
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New Brunswick, Canada
Scout, so glad Aleck is well and in good hands. I agree with MFair that it's way too early for the war to stop being fun...

#4457588 - 01/16/19 11:09 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
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MFair Offline
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MFair  Offline
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Mark Jericho
Auchell Aerodrome
Jan. 17, 1910

It had been a wonderful time the last few days. The weather had been good and patrols had been up every day. Jericho had done two bombing mission, one to Vimy Junction and another at the front lines West of Lille. Both missions had resulted in heavy damage to the targets and C Flight had been given hardy congratulations by the CO. The Arty spotting mission all the way down to Fricourt had gone well also..His and Swany's pal from training had joined their squadron and it was like old times with the three of them together again. Besides, James was the only one that seemed to have any money should they get the chance to go into town.

"I sure wish I could get a chance to knock off a Hun" Jericho said as he cleaned his 45 Colt.

James looked up from his letter writing and looked astounded at Jericho's statement, "Did you ever stop to think how many you killed dropping those bombs, or how many met their demise when you and Whorton directed all that artillery on to their positions! I wager you have already killed hundreds if not thousands".

Jericho looked up stone faced, "I never thought of that Pard" then went back to cleaning the 45. James rolled his eyes in amusement at his hut mate.

Swany looked up from his book as Jericho was sliding the 45 back into it's oiled leather holster and asked, "you ever use that on anyone while out in the wild west".

Jericho got up and hung the pistol on his makeshift coat rack. As he turned to walk out of their hut he said, "No, not out west."

Swany and James looked at one another in bewilderment. "What do you think about that Swany?" Jim asked.

"I don't know James. Looked like I may have struck a nerve. You know, anytime we ask about his past he always has the same answer, circumstances."

James added, "well don't ask him any more. He was just starting to open up a bit."

James went back to writing his letter and Swany went back to his book.

Jericho was outside looking at the clear night thinking of home.


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!
#4457594 - 01/17/19 12:12 AM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: Nov 2014
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Fullofit Offline
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Fullofit  Offline
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Ajax, ON
That’s some dark past Jericho is hiding!
Scout, glad your pilot’s ok. You’re giving Lou run for his money with those engine failures. Wonder what nickname your pilot is going to be stuck with?


"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."
#4457672 - 01/17/19 02:29 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: May 2012
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Hasse Offline
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I'm glad to see Aleck made it! Be careful out there!

So many interesting stories to read in this thread already. IMHO, this DID campaign has had a very strong start when it comes to the quality of writing. So keep it up everybody! cheers

Julius is now serving in his new unit and has his first encounter with the enemy...


4. SEEING THE ELEPHANT

"However the world pretends to divide itself, there are only two divisions in the world today – human beings and Germans."

- Rudyard Kipling in the Morning Post, June 22, 1915.

Early January, 1916.

Since his arrival at Bertincourt, life had been extremely busy for Julius. His first day at the field had been spent learning the basics of military service in a frontline aviation unit. He had reported to the Abteilungsführer, Hauptmann Viebig, after which had followed a round of introductions to his new comrades, both pilots and observers. Julius was housed in an old brick building, where he shared one of the rooms with a fellow warrant officer. All in all, housing conditions at the field were excellent and Julius felt he was very lucky compared to the men serving in the trenches, including his brother Hermann.

Early in the morning of January 6th, Hauptmann Viebig ordered Julius to report to the hangars in his flight gear. It was time for his introductory flight, and the Abteilungsführer wanted to see for himself how the newest member of his unit performed in the field. Julius was rather nervous, but the weather was fine and he was only required to takeoff and fly a few circles around the field, which was something he had already practiced many times at the flight school in Bork. Hauptmann Viebig was a determined-looking fellow, and taller than Julius. He was one of the Alte Adler (Old Eagles), men who had earned their pilot’s license already before the war. Compared to the relaxed Leffers, Viebig was a strict military professional - the kind of Prussian military man Julius had known well since childhood. Armed with this knowledge, Julius expected he would get along fine with his commander.

The mechanics had already prepared the Aviatik for takeoff, and after receiving orders from Viebig, Julius climbed into the cockpit. A short while later he was taxiing on the grass field now wet with snowy mud. A final push of the throttle and a gentle pull of the stick, and Julius was airborne. He climbed to 300 metres and then began to circle the field. After ten minutes of circling, Julius took his Aviatik down for a landing. It was a bit bumpy, but went otherwise well. Viebig congratulated Julius, apparently satisfied with his performance.

Next on the menu was a longer familiarization flight to teach Julius the lay of the land in the area of operations of Feldflieger-Abteilung 32. The unit was attached to XIV. Reserve-Korps, which was defending the positions of the Somme front between Bapaume and Péronne. The British 3rd Army was facing them on the other side of the lines. Julius was accompanied on this flight by Oberleutnant Max Weber, one of the detachment’s observer officers. (Weber was not related to the famous sociologist of the same name.)

The good weather continued, so Julius and Max took off later on the same day. The plan was to fly through a series of waypoints to give Julius a basic understanding of the important landmarks in the sector while staying safely behind German lines. First they climbed up to 2000 metres above Bertincourt and then proceed south towards the river Somme and the town of Péronne, which formed the left flank of their army corps’s sector. Julius had never seen the front with his own eyes, so the sight that opened up below them among the scattered clouds of a dim midwinter’s day was sobering. Kilometer after kilometer the muddy and snowy ground was mutilated by lines of trenches, which extended as far as the eye could see. Further south was the sector of the 1. Armee, and somewhere in its trenches Julius’s brother Hermann was leading his company of infantry.

[Linked Image]

Julius’s thoughts were suddenly interrupted by Max, who had turned to face him and was gesturing with his hand towards the west - an enemy airplane! Julius turned his head and attempted to spot their foe. It took a while for his inexperienced eyes to locate the enemy machine, but finally Julius succeeded in spotting him. Now that he knew where to look, it was easy to see the dark shape flying along them in the distance. Julius used his binoculars to get a better view. The enemy plane turned out to be a British two-seater - a B.E. 2.

Julius had been strictly forbidden to look for trouble on this flight, so he contented himself with keeping an eye on the British machine while completing their tour around Péronne. Nothing unexpected happened during the rest of the flight. Julius thought it was relatively simple to navigate in his sector (at least in good weather) with so many towns, woods and the river Somme in the south acting as excellent landmarks.

After landing safely back at Bertincourt Max and Julius immediately informed Viebig of the British plane. The commander ordered Leffers to go search for the two-seater, and soon the would-be flying ace took off with the detachment’s Fokker E.III.

An hour later Leffers returned. He had been unable to find enemy machines. Apparently the British had departed soon after Julius and Max had left Péronne.

It had been an exciting first day of action for Julius. Now he was ready to begin participating in the actual operations of Feldfliger-Abteilung 32.


"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
#4457710 - 01/17/19 07:26 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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Nigel Archibald Notting
Sgt, RFC
4 Sqn Rfc.
Allonville, Flanders

Jan 17, 1916.


Rigged and Ready, My machine was posted Recon. We acted as Wingman and took notes incase the Camera didn't work. I say bit of a washout what with 7/10th cloud cover and ordered from 2600 meters. Hq was happy and thats what we are here for.

Attached Files CFS3 2019-01-17 11-08-31-24.jpgCFS3 2019-01-17 11-18-01-81.jpg
#4457724 - 01/17/19 10:23 PM Re: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018) [Re: Raine]  
Joined: Nov 2014
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Fullofit Offline
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Fullofit  Offline
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Ajax, ON
Great story Hasse. I’m surprised young Julius was disciplined enough and didn’t attempt to get a “closer look”.
Carrick, another day, another shilling earned.

16 January, 1916 9:05
Toul, Verdun Sector
Sergent Gaston A. Voscadeaux

An uneventful recon mission to front sector in the sailent west of St. Mihiel. Voscadeaux lead Sergent Levy to the rendezvous point with a pair of Nieuport scouts from Esc. 65. He noticed them circling about 500 m higher and unwilling to join. Gaston thought maybe they haven’t noticed two large, juicy bombers flying nearby so he decided to climb to their altitude and make his introductions. Despite flying in front of the 2 scouts they still refused to join the formation. Gaston wasn’t amused. He decided to press on without the escort. Judging by their actions they wouldn’t be much help if a Fokker showed up anyway. It was too bad as the fighters tended to attract Flak to themselves, leaving the bombers unmolested. Voscadeaux and Levy completed their 21 minute patrol of the front lines without noticing any new troop concentrations or movements. It was all rather quiet. It was time to get back to base. Another job well done.


"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."
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