Monday 23 April 1917. Now that some of the bugs have been worked out of the Se5 (and there were plenty per my latest book) the squadron now goes to "High" mission frequency per the Ready Room which should mean two missions a day. The first is another Line Patrol at dawn but without all the clouds the visibility is much better. Near the front I see several individual aircraft straggling back to British territory. Apparently things are hot already.
Just over into Hunland a group of 5 Albs wish to contest this violation of their airspace. The Flight Leader orders the attack and I just miss being rammed by a flight mate as the AI does their usual (and visually nonsensical) "blow up and scatter around" thing they do when ordered to attack from a bad (to the AI mind) position - I think.
My AI pals are getting their stuff together in their pre-attack dance and I pick out a Hun who tries to turn. In a great deflection shot I give him a short burst and he noses over and goes down. Thinking that he is "faking" (which I have seen - actually I think they sustain damage, stall or lose control, then recover several thousand feet down but we'll call it "faking") I follow but nope, looks like he is really going down. Using the newly discovered "J" key I clicked around and find my boy.
Based on the bullet holes near the cockpit it looks like a pilot kill. Lucky shooting! Victory #10!
Circling to form up I am soon joined by two Se's and then see a single speck low and flying east. Almost certainly a Hun! Having plenty of ammo left I dive and am followed by the two Se's. I cut my throttle and get in a pretty good burst but have to break off and my two flight mates also take their shots. I circle for another pass but my buddies are on him like white on rice, so much so I think they may hit the ground but they don't and the Hun makes a forced landing. A shared victory for the flight I suppose.
Back at base claims are made for 4 Huns, 1 being mine, but we lose the two non-HA flight members listed a "Destroyed by Enemy Action" one of which was the Captain Flight Leader. Not to dance on the grave of a comrade but with 10 kills my Captain pip may be coming soon. The war continues.