11 July 2010
The Final Moves of the Day. . .
The last few moves of The Action of Teodorstal Valley between Major von Topfsange and Colonel von Adalnowski saw little movement on a grand scale, except at the eastern end of the valley and few casualties, except in one dramatic instance. Moves Ten and Eleven saw von Topfsange's Jaeger zu Fuss occupy two of the buildings in Effibriest. The Major also moved his single gun and crew closer in to the village, taking both out of reach of von Adalnowski's pesky Irish Grenzers, lurking atop the wooded ridge to the south of Effibriest. But let's return now to the Colonel's drawing room for a more complete picture of the final events of the day. . .
A fierce clash took place during Moves 12 and 13 between Colonel von Adalnowski's Grenadiere zu Pferd and Major von Topfsange's remaining 3rd Kuirassiere when the former finally caught up with the latter, who got bogged down in deep mud just west of Crampas Farm. In the four separate combats that ensued, von Adalnowski out-rolled the good Major in each case, effectively wiping out von Topfsange's squadron of cuirassiers. "Confound it!" exclaimed the Major in exasperation, furiously trying to relight his pipe several times before succeeding.
Meanwhile, Colonel von Adalnowski produced a fat cigar from a chest pocket inside his pearly white coat, which he proceeded to light and puff with obvious relish. "Ah, nothing like a good Cuban! Too bad about your cuirassiers, eh, von Topfsange? But maybe your jaegers and gun can hold onto Effibriest for a while longer." The Colonel then rallied his last five Grenadiere zu Pferd , whose intrepid captain, one R.S. Schmidt, led his troopers back toward Zichenauer lines.
As Move Fourteen began, von Topfsange remarked casually to his opponent, "I believe a few of your Irish Grenzers holding Instettin might be within range of my gun, my dear von Adalnowski." He measured the distance to confirm his suspicion, adding, "Here, hand me those dice." The Major threw well enough to bring down two men in the nearer house, one of which was an officer. "At last!" he exclaimed. "Lady Luck is a fickle love indeed, but she always returns to me in the end. . . Blast! We're out of Gin and Tonic!"
Not to be outdone, Colonel von Adalnowski fired his own cannon at one of the houses in Effibriest at the end of Move 14, making two hits of his own in the process. "What's good for the goose is good for the gander, old man!" he observed and took another long puff on his cigar, which glowed red in agreement.
"Stuff and nonsense" retorted Major von Topfsange peevishly, "My Jaeger zu Fuss are also in possession of Crampas Farm now, meaning my troops hold two of the three built up areas in the valley. Technically, I've won the battle before the main armies arrive tomorrow!" he crowed. Colonel von Adalnowski blew a long plume of cigar smoke toward the drawing room ceiling through pursed lips, smiled at his opponent, and rattled the remaining ice at the bottom of his glass in the Major's direction, adding "A detail, my dear von Topsange, a mere detail!"
At this point, evening fell across Teodorstal Valley with Major von Topfsange and Colonel von Adalnowski retiring to their respective chambers on the second floor to dress for dinner. Stollenian troops have managed to gain control of both Crampas Farm and Effibriest through no particular display of tactical skill while the Zichenauer advance guard is firmly ensconced within the village of Instettin and also has troops stationed along the wooded ridge directly south of Effibriest. And so ends the Action at Teodorstal on a warm, muggy summer evening, 7 July 1770. Both von Topfsange and von Adalnowski expect the arrival of their main armies and commanding generals sometime in the night or early tomorrow.