Carrick - As long as that crusty but trusty mount gets Jeffrey there and back, he should be fine.
RT - Sorry to see Thomason has fallen. Another brave virtual lad gone off to sing with the Choir Invisible.
Epower - Oliver is catching up again I see, and from the look of things has tackled it single-handedly, (yes, yes, let him tackle it single-handedly!), and handled it easily, (oh yes, yes let him handle it easily!), though perhaps less so during that encounter with the Baron and his wingman. Your gallant fellow is lucky it was merely a flesh wound and I trust that Doctor Piglet and Doctor Winston have treated it properly. I imagine the gift from Clarissa helped to take some of the sting out of his grazing, while her note likely put a bit of starch in other things. Some brilliant screenshots by the way. But of this chalice-shaped beacon that shines from the Chateaux Anthrax - oh, wicked, bad, naughty Zoot!
Wulfe - Another fine episode. Too bad about Jayaud. Despite the car troubles it sounds like William and the rest of the raiding party made the most of their time in Paris. Now to get to the depot and pick up that new kite, eh?
Raine - A harrowing turn for George with that Albatros on the 7th, he’s lucky the Hun suddenly decided to call it off, for whatever reason, engine trouble perhaps? And what a binge! As to your man’s condition following the bulk of it, I’m sure it was a result of some bad pudding - obviously.
Fullofit - Glad to learn that Ziggy will be back up and at it soon. Wounds healed and ready to take on those inexperienced Yanks. I believe he’s smart to be less than optimistic about HQ’s assessment of the new arrivals to the fight.
13 December 1917 65 Squadron R.F.C. Bailleul, France
The last three days have seen Captain Frederick Abbott and the lads from 'B' Flight out for early morning flips on each of them. Nothing of interest to report on today, apart from another bitterly cold and damp outing. The previous two however saw some excitement.
Lifting off on the morning of the 11th just as the sun crests the horizon and casts a warm, cheery glow on the nearby church steeple, a glow that belied the biting cold in the cockpit.
A group of five Pfalz scouts engage the five Pups of 65 Squadron just west of Polygon Wood. Frederick is on the tail of one in a flash and sends it packing.
The Captain then tears into another that is having a go-round with his wingman, and despatches this Hun too in short order.
After clearing the skies of the Boche, Freddy finds himself low over No Man's Land and makes a hasty retreat, passing an ongoing barrage as he does so.
Up well before first light on the 12th to chase after intruders spotted by ground units several miles east of camp.
As Frederick pushes his mount to intercept, he spots a lone Hun caught in the searchlight's beam stabbing up into the icy darkness.
The crew on the ground does a first rate job of holding the Pfalz in their beam as Abbott fires into the underbelly of the glowing target in front of him. The enemy pilot never saw it coming.
Another Pfalz is suddenly caught by the light and the Captain again turns to attack. The Hun, likely blinded by the beam, does little to evade and soon falls away, sharing the fate of his wingman.
Freddy turned in two claims for each of the sorties, however he learned this morning during tea that all four had been rejected. Apparently they’d each and every one been awarded to the AA gunners despite the fact that there was nary a puff of anti-aircraft fire to be seen or heard anywhere in the skies during either of the encounters in question. Abbott was miffed at first but soon laughed it off, saying if the chaps on the ground were that desperate for some recognition they could have it. He knew he’d gotten the Hun rotters, even if HQ had been convinced otherwise.
#4548360 - 12/13/2005:48 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Epower, ah yes, Château Anthrax. I hear the women there wear exciting underwear and are nice and shall attend to every, every need. I think Oliver can tackle the lot single-handed. It looks like Oliver can tackle those Albs and Pfalzen single-handed as well. Well done on the 5 confirmed. Getting close to that 100 mark. Exciting! And finally Clarissa proves to be useful for once. The thought of where the stockings have previously been makes one warm all inside, even before putting the cap on.
Lou, looks like that château is a well known rest stop for the weary travellers, who otherwise would definitely be in great peril. Odd Ziggy hasn’t encountered any of those Yanks yet, inexperienced or otherwise. Looks like those Pfalzen are useless in the air. Just as Oliver, Freddy has no problems dealing with them. Heartfelt congratulations on eliminating them and commiserations for all being denied. But ... those from the 12th look more like Albs than Pfalzen. Perhaps that’s the reason for the rejection? Great shots.
Their orders were straightforward: intercept enemy planes crossing the lines north of Murmelon-le-Grand. The enemy machines approached from high above and Ziggy was way too low to launch an attack. He could only defend. The camouflaged Nieuports had all the advantages except one. They were battling over German held territory and Zygmunt could go as low as he liked without any fear of ground fire hitting him. He tangled with a pair of French sesquiplanes and was hit by fire while attempting to concentrate on one target. He eventually damaged one of them and switched to the other one to avoid more fire. After more circling around he was able to bring down the Nieuport. He then immediately switched to a new target which was chasing after one of Ziggy’s wingmates. This one also ended up crashing into the ground close to the first one. The battle was over then and every machine returned to base individually. Zygmunt made two claims.
Fullofit, you're quite right of course about those two planes on the 12th being Albs. It's possible the intensely bright searchlights, or the ridiculously early hour, or both, caused Freddy to inadvertently bear Pfalz witness on his claims that morning. Now to Ziggy, he's gotten right back into the swing of things, but then we all knew he would. Here's wishing him better luck with his claims.
Carrick, perhaps more of a nightglare, what with those searchlights and all.
#4548396 - 12/13/2011:31 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Epower – wonderful pictures and story of life in 56. An delightful to see you back at the Café Fou.
Carrick – Mr Thorpe seems to be doing well. Now if the claims gods can only get on his side…
Lou – the pictures of the silvery Hun caught in the searchlight are mesmerising.
Fullofit – impressive work on those two Nieuports. For a moment I thought they were going to be all over you.
RT – shattered to see your man gone so soon. I hope you can start up another one quickly. I really enjoy the "historical document" format.
War Journal of Flight Sub-Lieutenant George Ewan MacAlister
8 Squadron, RNAS
"The Albatros came apart in the air, shedding its wings and part of its undercarriage."
Compston welcomed my personal to his little gathering in the C Flight Bessonneau. “MacAlister! You look like a jam jar full of snot.”
He was right, of course. My hair was uncombed and I had not shaven. My mouth tasted like the bottom of a parrot’s cage and I was still not entirely steady on my feet. I was wearing a rollneck sweater over my pyjamas with my greasy as tunic over that and a pair of corduroy trousers. Worse yet, I had a splitting headache and was having a bit of a problem focusing. Compston said he would lead us over but that it would be my job to lead us back at the end of the patrol. “A bit of responsibility is the perfect tonic” is the way he put it.
The job was to marry up with some RE8s over Arras and then escort them to photograph the enemy reserve lines from Cambrai north for several miles. We took off and I slotted into my assigned position at the back of the seven-aircraft formation. I had heard that the cold air at altitude was a hangover cure but had not believed it. I was very pleased to learn that the rumour was true. Thirty minutes after takeoff I was feeling ready to roar. The patrol was uneventful and after ninety minutes, the boys in the two-seaters waved goodbye and dived towards their home aerodrome. I moved to the front of our formation to take the lead from Compston. Just as I was about to do so, I spotted a single Albatros heading east. It was well below us and crossing our path from left to right. I waggled my wings and pointed to it. Compston pointed at me and then at Colton and then he pointed down toward the Hun. I made sure that Colton was paying attention and would follow me and began a long full-throttle dive.
We caught the Hun west of Pronville as he turned north toward the Hun aerodrome at Riencourt. I do not believe he knew we were there until my rounds began smashing into his machine. The Albatros came apart in the air, shedding its wings and part of its undercarriage. I watched it crash a couple of kilometres south of Riencourt and rushed away to rejoin our patrol. Archie followed us back over the lines but we were off and clear within a few minutes.
On our return to Mont-St-Eloi, I filed my report. Unfortunately, Colton suffered from that common inability of novice war pilots to spot enemy machines in the air. Although he had followed me faithfully, he managed not to see the Hun at all!
The next day was Sunday, 9 December 1917. The weather was filthy and all flying was scrubbed. Despite the snow we had a visit from a fleet chaplain and divisions were called for 10 AM in one of the hangars. I expected the usual “let us pray that God smites the Hun” speech but this fellow was different. He had the stewards serve tea with a spot of rum to ward off the chill and we talked about whether it was possible to have war without hate. It really was a splendid discussion, after which there was communion for the faithful and an exchange of somewhat clean jokes.
In the afternoon, White, Sneath, and I got a drive into the village and paid call on Hairy Legs and her little estaminet. We spent a pleasant afternoon and White got to practice his French.
The foul weather continued another day and the snow made the roads treacherous, so we stoked up the stoves in our cabin and spent the day on “make and mend” and sleeping.
Compston let me lead our patrol on the morning of 11 December. We escort it three DH4s over the lines toward Monchy. We had no contact until our return flight when a lone DFW two-seater passed overhead. The DH4s were at our separation point so I immediately turned about and led a chase through the clouds. The Clerget was running beautifully and I emerged alone from a cloud bank to find myself in perfect position immediately below and behind the green DFW. I closed to about twenty yards before firing and then popped up just to one side of its tail and fired about twenty rounds at the observer. He tried to swing his gun around but I jinked over to the other side of his tail and, before he could pull the gun back in that direction, I fired again and saw the observer slip out of sight into the fuselage. Now I could close to a very short distance. The next burst must have killed the pilot because the machine fell out of control. I saw it disappear into some clouds at about one thousand feet, still in a flat spin.
The two-seater was confirmed to have crashed by our batteries on the ground. It became my sixteenth confirmed victory.
The next day brought better weather, although it remained very cold. We were rigged out with Le Prieur rockets for a balloon strafe. Takeoff was in near complete darkness, a new experience and none too comfortable. The target balloon was well to the south. It took nearly forty minutes to get there. The morning sun glinted off its skin, making it visible from a long way off. I was well ahead of the others and attacked first, hitting it with my rockets. I had left it a trifle late before toggling the electric switch. The balloon went up in flames and threw my Camel over. I could feel my spine twinge and made my way quickly back across the lines. The nearest aerodrome was Courcelles. I put down there and had the machine checked over. The place was home to 12 Squadron, flying RE8s. Their commanding officer gave me the lend of a hot water bottle for my back. An hour in an armchair with the hot water bottle put me right again.
The balloon was confirmed for number seventeen.
On 13 December 1917 we were sent up to Ypres on a line patrol. Cloud was very heavy and visibility poor. We flew our assigned route and I was quite convinced that we would go home without contact. But then a large group of Albatri appeared and a general melee ensued. We were outnumbered at first. I managed some snapshots at several Huns, two of which dived away. That left us five-on-five, a ratio much to our advantage. The Huns did not have much stamina. Every time I got a crack at one it disappeared and did not return. Finally it seemed they were all gone. But then I noticed one Albatros down low just behind the Hun lines. It appeared to be circling in preparation for landing at the enemy aerodrome at Rekkem. It was a simple matter to dive onto his tail. He was finished before he knew we were there. Dennett witnessed the attack, which was confirmed as victory number eighteen.
#4548409 - 12/14/2002:49 AMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
AF Attack: B Flight Strike force 5 a/c A Flight Cover force 4 a/c
My word , went off as planned. My flight made 2 passes then pulled off climbing and cover for A flight's attack run. We got knocked about by cannon and ground fire , but no losses. My claim for the other day was confirmed.
#4548458 - 12/14/2002:11 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Joined: May 2012 Posts: 4,507RAF_Louvert
BOC President; Pilot Extraordinaire; Humble Man
Carrick - Congratulations on Thorpe's first confirmed victory. Binge time in the officers' mess tonight!
Raine - Eighteen for George at this point? Legendary! He must be getting a gong soon with that sort of record. But war without hate? I doubt it.
14 December 1917 65 Squadron R.F.C. Bailleul, France
A gawd-awful day for flying; driving rain, howling winds, and thick grey clouds everywhere. Captain Abbott led his crew on a frigid, wet offensive patrol down to Lens, which was interrupted east of Givenchy by a hoard of Hun triplanes sporting red noses and bright splashes of personal colours. From this, and the way they handled their kites, there was no doubt it was the Circus.
Apart from mad birds and Englishmen, who flys in this sort of weather?
Answer: Richthofen and his bloodthirsty gang.
With eight to five odds in favour of the Hun it was every man for himself. Frederick wasted no time stitching the underside of a triplane as it carved in front of his guns. The Boche dropped into a spin and did not recover, but Abbott had no time to watch him hit the ground.
After an eternity of blurred fighting 'B' Flight still had all its Camels in the air, though some fairly shot up. The Hun, having lost two of their own, decided to call it quits and ran off eastward. Freddy chased a straggler with a periwinkle blue tail down to near ground level and with a deadly volley sent it crashing into the mud near the British forward trenches.
The Captain and two of his flight mates had to land at Hesdigneul for some light but essential repairs while the others returned to the Asylum to give their reports. The horrid weather continued for the remainder of the day and by the time Freddy and the rest of 'B' Flight made it home it had already been decided that things would get squiffy after dinner.
#4548527 - 12/14/2011:45 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Joined: Nov 2014 Posts: 3,270Fullofit
Raine, thanks! Those two Nieuports were, in fact, all over me. So, MacAlister has discovered the hangover cure! That is way better news than all those kills. Which reminds me, did George smack the back of Colton’s head after he failed to confirm Mac’s Albatros? It also looks like those Le Prieur rockets are as dangerous to the attacker as they are to the target. MacAlister can count his lucky stars it was his back and not the Camel’s that’s been broken. Those rockets are the proverbial straw.
Lou, no dice on those claims for Ziggy, but what about those Dreideckers Freddy swatted? Are those confirmed? I bet they’re not as easy to shoot down as those Pfalzen. Well done to him despite the horrid weather and the general squiffiness.
Both Nieuports have been denied. It looks like December isn’t a lucky month for Hahn. He’s already spent half a month without a confirmed victory. Today could be when everything changes. They were scrambled to intercept enemy planes heading for the troop camp north-east of St-Quentin-le-Petit. When they arrived over the patrol area a gaggle of SPADs descended upon them and Ziggy’s radiator failed all at the same time. He was lucky to dive into the clouds and glide to the aerodrome at St-Quentin. Later he learned they’ve lost a pilot, a recent arrival and another machine was also a write off. Fortunately the pilot of that plane was only lightly wounded and should be back to flying form soon.
"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."
#4548542 - 12/15/2001:49 AMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
It was a glorious day! The Staffel received 3 new machines today - the improved Albatros D.Va. The C.O. has assigned one of them to Ziggy and ordered his flight to patrol over friendly aerodrome at Annelles. The skies were surprisingly clear of the French menace today. It was a very pleasant stroll through the clouds. If it weren’t for the two Spandaus sticking out of the front of his Albatros, one might think the War wasn’t even on.
"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."
#4548677 - 12/16/2001:14 AMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Carrick - Too bad about your man Thorpe being denied a shot at that Hun gasbag. Perhaps tomorrow, eh what?
Fullofit - I'll bet Ziggy is pleased to have those new and improved mounts now at his disposal. Despite the improvements, I still wouldn't advise getting into a righthand turn fight with a Camel driver who has some skill behind him. If Freddy's following report is any indication, it likely won't end well for the Kaiser's fliegers that do. And you were quite right about those Dreideckers, they are a handful compared to anything else the Boche are currently flying.
16 December 1917 65 Squadron R.F.C. Bailleul, France
A real go-round today and in some beautiful flying weather as well !
The morning show for Capatin Abbott and 'B' Flight started a short time after breakfast when, while escorting a brace of Bristols from 20 Squadron to the east of Armentieres, a swarm of six Albatri decided to crash the party.
After the initial merge the swirling madness commenced. Abbott and one of the V-strutters had a game of "Flinch" with the Hun flinching first, and as he pulled up Freddy gave him a proper dose of pepper.
The Captain was quickly on the tail of the now-compromised Alb and finished it off with another burst from the Vickers.
The Hun's wingman suddenly came round on Frederick and the next dance began.
But the Albatros was no match for the Camel in a turn fight, particularly when turning to the right, and was soon feeling the full affect of Abbott's guns.
Freddy watched as the green fellow rolled over on his back and quickly fell, joining his mate below.
The King's ace had no time to admire his handiwork however as a third challenger now entered the ring.
But again the Hun made the fatal mistake of trying to outturn the Camel clockwise and Abbott closed on this one as well and administered the coup de grâce.
The V-strutter glided down as Freddy climbed away with his wingman, 2nd Lt. Ben Ashley, in tow. Abbott was hoping the stricken Boche would land intact but instead he slammed into a copse of trees and burned.
The Captain returns home with three claims to submit but also with two men from his flight missing.
The fates of both men were learned by lunchtime: 2nd Lt. Billy Freyer was killed in a crash on the edge of Armentieres after taking damage in the fight; and 2nd Lt. John Dickenson is missing and presumed dead after he was seen chasing a fleeing Hun well across the lines. Both lads had been with the squadron for less than a fortnight. On the positive side of the coin, all three of Freddy's claims were confirmed as there was a wealth of witnesses, what with his own wingman as well as the friendly balloon and ground units that had watched the battle unfold above them, (amazingly none of said units put in claims of their own for the crashed Hun planes). With these latest, along with the two Fokker triplanes Abbott was credited with from the 14th, he has added five more to his tally in just the last three days giving him a standing total of 40. He is quite chuffed with himself.
#4548773 - 12/16/2007:19 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Lou - Freddy is wasting no time in that Camel. Excellent work. Loved the pic of the Alb in the beam and the well executed approach from below. A scrap with the Baron's men, and in Triplanes! Tough deal losing Freyer and Dickenson like that. Good thing Freddy can drive that Camel to the edge of the envelope. Superb long-range shooting. I do envy those tightly spaced Vickers. The huge offset with the top-mounted Lewis gun on the SE sprays ordnance all over the place. Not complaining, just jealous. It's a fair trade for 135mph. Congrats of 40! Freddy will catch his pal Oliver in no time at this rate.
Fullofit - Attack of the psychotic Nieups again. Not only did they nearly hit you, they almost crashed each other. Kanone Kaiser retains his <pinkie to mouth, sideways looks> 'magnetic' attraction. Hard luck with that verdammt claims office again. Is it the Polish thing or is he still being punished for Nadette? But what's this? New toys! Very exciting.
Carrick - It's not the night flying I find terrifying it's the landing...As for the small fish strategy for Thorpe, that sounds like a good plan, but when all else fails the 'brave brave Sir Robin' maneuver is there for you in the SE. Huzzah! First confirmed kill. Binge On, chaps!
Raine - I see Mac has dialed back his consumption of rich pudding. Like Cyrano, "The King fell ill after a triple helping of Maron Glace. Maron Glace will no longer served at court." And this ample estaminet farmwife who declines the use of the razor, White had better watch out, she might yield to his importunate advances. Almost incinerated again. Next time Mac loses 1/2" of height due to explosions remember it's ice baths that do the trick. Good thing Winter is here. Eighteen in three weeks is just plain incroyable. Superb stuff. I hope he'll get a telegram from Boom, or at least one from Wing.
Wulfe - How fares Bill Grey? Did he get lost in Paris?
R. Talbot - We await your new man with great anticipation. ____________________________________________________
À la Recherche du Temps Perdu - Part 50 of many
23 November 1917 56 Squadron RFC Laviéville, France
Weather still dreadful. D@mn this mist. B-B went up at 10.00 punching through the fog. He returned after 20 minutes to report conditions clearing.
11.00 Distant Offensive Patrol over Cambrai. Maybery, Turnbull, Harmon, Cawson, Dodds and Roy. Masses of aircraft over Bourlon Wood. Spied a two-seater 1000 feet above and engaged with Maybery. Richard broke off when his guns stopped. I closed on the DFW and fired from 100 yards all the way to his tail. The Hun spiraled off right and fell out of control, smashing to earth just south of the Arras-Cambrai road.
After lunch I went back to the hangar to find B511 gone. Allyn and Moody were also absent.
“Major Balcombe-Brown took her up, sir,” said Flight Sgt. Pickett. “Thirty minutes after the morning patrol landed.”
That was 3 hours ago!
“The Major ran into a spot of trouble and landed at Lechelle, sir. I’ve sent the salvage crew as well as Corporals Allyn and Moody.
If B-B hurt her...
“I see. Thank you, Flight Sergeant,” I said masking my outrage.
Moody and Allyn were off to Lechelle to bring B511 home. Major Balcombe-Brown returned, his flying kit reeking of petrol.
“Turned the wrong way at the worst moment. Boche observer was bloody accurate,” he recounted. “Shot me about and put one in the tank. Wave of petrol blinded me. Engine was a wreck... I say, Winningstad, attacking two seaters is harder than it would appear.”
My dear Holmes, your powers of deduction leave us speechless!
I stood there numb with shock. My beautiful B511 shredded. Her Hispano-Hispano wrecked?! Turning on my heel before I said something truly insubordinate, I stalked off to my hut, sulking there like Achilleus in his tent. Useless!
A hard run around the aerodrome did nothing to quiet my mind. An hour later, I was just starting to work the bag when Moody and Allyn pulled up, their tender conspicuously empty. Seeing my inquiring look, Moody spoke first. “She had to go away, sir. To the Depot. Terrible shame. She was such a lovely machine.”
Sing Goddess the anger...
The torrent of unrepeated oaths and profanity I vented forth with such uninhibited violence continued for span of time that might have impressed Smokey himself. Those within earshot, even long-serving men grown old in the service, looked upon me with a respectful awe. Forty minutes raining blows on the bag did little to improve my mood.
Mac was sympathetic. “Hard luck, Ripper. The CO did a Slingsby on you. I know exactly how your feel.”
Beery and Maybery, seeing my fuming could barely restrain their mirth. With the afternoon and early evening dud, they gathered a crew for a run into Amiens since B Flight had the morning show tomorrow. Under normal circumstances Mac would head to bed early as would the rest of B Flight, per his standing orders but the coming Winter weather made early starts impossible so there was no need for skullduggery. With Mac along for the festivities, the men of B Flight would be joining the group openly instead of sneaking after us once their Flight Commander was safely asleep.
It was my first time to Amiens. We stopped first at Charlie’s Bar for oysters beyond count. The others went shopping before dinner. My humor much improved, I went to visit the cathedral.
I stood at the foot of the nave, staring at the vault, my eyes rising to take in the unimaginable height. 150 feet! Only Beauvais was higher and that had collapsed. Seven centuries ago men set the first stones. Sixty years later their aged grandchildren would see the cathedral completed.
The evening light still filtered in the upper windows, bathing the ceiling and walls in a soft pale glow. In the chapel to my left, three old women in black shawls lit candles. The mass was finished but the smell of frankincense lingered and closing my eyes I conjured images of those centuries of worshipers. Whatever I might or might not believe, it was impossible to escape a sense of wonder.
After an excellent dinner at the Carlton Hotel and a fine evening with the fellows, all thoughts of dragging my lifeless Commanding Officer around the City of Priam faded to memory.
24 November 1917 56 Squadron RFC Laviéville, France
Moody and Allyn worked much of the night preparing a spare for my morning patrol. A new aircraft would be ferried from the depot later in the day. Waiting with Grandpa for news when the warning message came through. As we raced to our waiting SEs the air raid klaxon sounded. Two dots high, high above. Archie was showing us the way as the Huns retreated ENE. We caught them over Bapaume.
Attacking the left hand DFW I repeated yesterday’s tactic and started firing at 100 yards, only shearing off at 30 yards. The DFW snapped hard to the left and began a shallow, wide spiral under control, landing almost intact near the southeastern outskirts of Bapaume.
Harmon sent the other DFW down in similar fashion.
Dodds and Cawson got badly shot about as did Maybery and all three made for the advanced landing ground at Bapaume. I joined them with the rest of A Flight. Damage wasn’t severe and all three would be airborne and back to Laviéville within an hour or two. I considered fetching the Huns, who had almost certainly survived the crash, before I thought better of it. Killing Boche was difficult enough. I didn’t need to know them as men.
Returned to Laviéville to find Moody and Allyn giving my new mount, B54, a thorough examination. She was new and Martinsyde built but didn’t have a Hispano-Hispano. My first test flight was disappointing. B54 maneuvered decently enough and the engine made adequate revs, but she lacked the snap and power of B511.
Wing confirmed the DFWs from yesterday and today. Ninety-nine.
25 November 1917 56 Squadron RFC Laviéville, France
Early morning standby once again. Everybody seemed on edge this morning, pilots, NCOs and men. A palpable tension buzzed through the A Flight hangar. I sat with Richard, Turnbull, Dodds, Cawson and Woodman, calmly drinking my tea and waiting for the call. At 8.00 sharp, orders came through to deal with Huns operating over Bourlon Wood.
Go away, Richard!
Eager for retribution, Maybery closed on the Hun but then broke high seeing my tracer stream. The Albatros fell north of Bourlon Wood.
A-Flight went round in a tail chase.
Cutting in, I put a burst into an all green Albatros. He fell out of control to crash in our lines. “There his life and strength were scattered.”
I dropped lower. Signs of savage fighting scarred the ground. The PBI clung tenaciously to Bourlon Wood but their hold was tenuous, and the Boche were determined to have it back. Archie puffs from our battery led me to a third Green Tail running east. The Hun would not see home again.
Maybery was the first to offer congratulations as we recounted the events of the patrol. He’d seen the first two Green Tails crash and would confirm my 100th and my 101st victory. The entire company of A Flight, NCOs and men pretended to go about their duties as they tried to listen in.
The gunners claimed my third Albatros. They were welcome to it. 101.
A telegram from Lt. Col Playfair, 13th Wing OC: “Congratulations on your show, this morning.”
Another from Boom himself: “Well done. Your work has been of the very finest.”
With the dawn show tomorrow I’d hoped for a subdued celebration, but my comrades were having none of that. Events landed short an all-out binge, but with the squadron band in top form and songs to be sung, we were all fairly tight by the time we turned in at midnight.
Last edited by epower; 12/16/2007:30 PM.
#4548775 - 12/16/2007:24 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Joined: Nov 2014 Posts: 3,270Fullofit
Lou, in that case it is good Ziggy isn’t stationed anywhere close to anyone flying these humped wonders. He only has to contend with Nieuports and SPADs. Isn’t that convenient? What is also convenient is all those Albatrosen turning right together with Abbott. When will they learn? Freddy seems to be getting very cozy with the enemy planes flying so close, judging by the excellent photos. Congrats on the five confirmed kills and a tally of 40 now. It’s just too bad about those two wingmates who obviously did not turn right. Good thing there is a steady supply of fresh meat coming from flight schools all over. Keep turning right!
Escort a pair of Rumplers from FA(A) 270 Lb on reconnaissance of the front near Reims. They never rendezvoused with the two-seaters. Right after take off a flight of SPADs tore through the Albatros formation. Zygmunt quickly found one that he could keep up with and with well aimed bursts crippled it. Last he saw the French machine was heading for the ground at a very steep angle. He didn’t see it crash as there was another SPAD right on his tail, but it was a safe bet this Frenchman would not be returning home. That second SPAD was a different story. He flew circles around Ziggy’s machine and all he could do was attempt potshots. They’ve exchanged a few weaves by scissoring in front of each other but in the end he got away by extending and climbing to where the Albatros could not touch him. It didn’t matter. Hahn already found another target below. It was easy to surprise this one and fill his fuselage full of lead. As the SPAD was crashing to the ground Zygmunt noticed a peculiar emblem on the side of the fuselage. It was an Indian head.
P.M. Patrol a bit better. B flights 5 a/c and 4 Rovers tangled with some huns maybe 8 of them. as Dog fight got going, I got some good hits with 3-4 bursts from my Mgs then came a ripping noise and flapping of fabric. Pulled up cut power and went looking for a friendly AF. The flight scored 1 Destroyed for no losses.
Last edited by carrick58; 12/17/2003:25 AM.
#4548846 - 12/17/2002:53 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Joined: May 2012 Posts: 4,507RAF_Louvert
BOC President; Pilot Extraordinaire; Humble Man
Carrick - Thorpe got into quite the gaggle of Albatri in that last outing. Looks like he had his hands full there for a bit. That formation screenshot is quite nice.
Fullofit - An Indian head emblem on that SPAD you say? Perhaps Ziggy has met up with one of those elusive Yanks at last. It may have been his first meeting, but it surely won't be his last.
Epower - That bloody Balcombe-Brown, destroying Oliver's beloved kite like that. And now he's stuck with a new mount that sounds the inferior in all regards to B511. Ah, but Oliver did get to experience Amiens and some of that city's delights for the first time, so there was that treat at least. Plus, breaking the century mark must have taken some of the sting out of BB's betrayal. Well done!
17 December 1917 65 Squadron R.F.C. Bailleul, France
The loss of Freyer and Dickenson yesterday had kept things a bit more sedate than usual in the mess after dinner, however Captain Frederick Abbott did stand everyone to several rounds in celebration of his most recent victories. No mention was made of their missing comrades throughout the evening's gathering, as was the standing order in 65 Squadron. Freyer's body was sent over this morning from the crash site and there would be a funeral for him following afternoon tea. No confirmation as of yet from the Hun side on Dickenson so he is still listed as "missing, presumed dead". Because of the pilot shortages both 'A' and 'B' Flights went out together shortly after 9:00 on an OP along the friendly side of the lines between Lille and Lens. Apart from a pair of Boche two-seaters seen well east of Lens no other enemy planes could be found. On the return trip Freddy decided to make use of some ammunition and dove down to ruin the day of some Fritz in the trenches near Lille. HQ had recently suggested, (strongly), that any pilots returning with unspent rounds could spend said rounds on frontline ground targets if they so wished. Abbott had never actually strafed the trenches before, but had practiced such while at gunnery school. He decided today was as good a day as any to give it a go.
A light and poorly aimed barrage was being laid down in No Man's Land by the Hun, landing well short of the British front line trenches west of Lille.
As he crossed the mud Freddy could see a series of enemy positions amid the devastation below.
The Captain aligned his mount so that he could fire down into and along the row of Fritz gunners and infantry.
He steeled himself as he dove in, unleashing repeated volleys from the twin Vickers as the enemy, quite aware of the incoming threat, returned the hate in kind.
Suddenly, the nine-cylinder Clerget began sounding like a very out-of-balance seven-cylinder, shaking and clattering like it never had before. Freddy broke off his attack and carved towards the west just as a searing pain jabbed at his backside. He'd been shot - in the arse! His right butt cheek ached, it felt as if he were sitting on a jagged-edged knife. But worse than that was how the engine was banging along. Abbott clawed for altitude as he made his inglorious retreat, with Hun rounds zipping and tearing through his wings and tail feathers as he did so. Despite his best efforts to gain height the Clerget was having none of it, rapidly getting worse as he tried for the friendly side of the mud. And then - BANG - the engine went silent as the prop ground to a halt. Was he high enough to glide to safety? That dam'd barrage still raged below, he certainly did not want to end up in there. All he could do was keep himself in the air as long as his trusty Camel and the fates would allow. He hoped for the best as he drifted lazily down - down - down. "Haw!" Freddy laughed to himself and God. "I may have to learn to speak German."
(to be continued)
#4548852 - 12/17/2003:31 PMRe: Deep Immersion DiD campaign -- Player Instructions (UPDATED 28 Nov 2018)
Epower, how did I manage to miss your post?! Apologies. Hold on! Hold on! What is B-B doing with B511? Who let him? Doesn’t he have his own crate to abuse? What rotten luck! Such a nice Hisso, all wasted on this berk. So, broke a hundred. Congrats on the achievement. That should have been a celebration worthy o the Gods themselves. Time for Oliver to get a transfer to a DH.4 outfit. And yes, it seems Hahn is still being haunted by Nadette.
Carrick, looks like Thorpe found the limits of his plane.
Lou, dear God! Freddy speaking German? That could definitely be interesting. What came over him trying to attack the trenches alone in his rickety Camel? Strongly suggested orders be damned. Now he has two arseholes and will have to use twice as much bumf.
Both SPADs have been confirmed. Ziggy was short one of a hundred. The HQ de died it would be a good nice if today Jasta 19 would patrol friendly front lines west of Guignicourt. They‘ve crossed the front lines and were met by a pack of SPADs. Ziggy turned the Schwarm around to force the enemy to fight over German territory. He also dragged them towards Schwarm Eins. It nearly worked, but the French machines were faster and caught up before the two Schwärme could merge. They had to go it alone. Hahn picked one, then two SPADs on his tail, but he was able to keep both of them at bay. At one point he noticed his wingman in trouble being followed by a Franzose. He managed to fire at the pursuer and damage it. Faint trail of vapour began to show behind the enemy. His wingman would have much easier time now. But the enemy pilot took the attack personally and began to chase after Ziggy, firing at every opportunity. It took some coaxing on Zygmunt’s part to get his Albatros to stay out of line of fire, but he managed it in the end and the enemy plane had to relent. Ziggy then took care of the SPAD that continued to chase him since the battle commenced. Last he saw it was heading down and out of control towards the mud. He couldn’t follow the progress as he picked up another French machine on his tail. This one, too, put up a gallant effort, but Hahn’s Albatros proved to be better of the two. After the last enemy crashed in the No-Man’s Land Zygmunt gathered what was left of his Schwarm and returned home.