MFair, that was one melancholic episode. What brought on such a brooding mood? Way to go Carrick. Glad you were able to outfox that Hun.
2 March , 1916 8:04 Senard, Verdun Sector Escadrille N37 Adjutant Gaston A. Voscadeaux
The weather seems to be improving. No more snow, or dark clouds today. Ltn. Dagonet, Gaston and Cpl. Dreux are to escort ‘A’ Flight to do some recon work of the front sector north of St. Mihiel salient. They’ve encountered 2 Aviatiks bombing the French lines over the northern part of the Foret de la Reine. Ltn. Dagonet gave the signal and the ‘B’ Flight went after them. Dagonet picked the leader and Gaston with his wingman slotted in behind the other Boche. Voscadeaux pumped his prey full of lead, but overshot when the Aviatik broke formation to try and save his skin. Cpl. Dreux who flew behind him finished the Hun off. Grey smoke was emanating from the engine as the machine went into an unrecoverable dive. The two aviators quickly turned their attention to the second two-seater, the one being taken care of by their leader Ltn. Dagonet. They watched as the two machines exchanged fire and their leader disengaged after being hit. Dreux was closer to the Aviatik and resumed the attack. The Hun was taking more fire, but suddenly Dreux broke off as well. This Hun was a crack shot, and managed to damage two of the French machines. It was Gaston's turn to finish what his wing leader and his wingman have started. Voscadeaux approached the two-seater carefully from below as not to give the gunner an easy target. He lined up and squeezed the trigger. Two short bursts and then ... nothing. Click, click. Gaston was out of bullets. He had to let the Boche go and curse his liberal use of ammunition with the previous Hun. Voscadeaux was a sitting duck with an empty gun and turned his Nieuport west to get back to base as quickly as possible but then he noticed bursts of Flak nearby. It was the ‘A’ Flight still circling the target. Despite his better judgment he joined them until they’d complete their run. It was a gamble, but a single-seater watching over them still looked more dangerous and hopefully would deter any Eindeckers coming for a closer look. The bluff worked and no enemy machines were encountered. The N12's finally finished their recon flight and they all returned together to the aerodrome. Gaston wondered if it would be possible to bring more ammo on board. He will have to look into it, but even if he could he couldn’t imagine how he would be able to reload his wing mounted Lewis. He would have to unbuckle, stand up and fight against the slipstream to fumble with his gun in his thick gloves, while the enemy shoots at him. It’s just not 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."