The Sword and the Flame - Rearguard Part III

The Pathans were swarming over the hill to their rear. In moments they would be in the village looking to exact revenge. The Lancer trooper heard his sergeant yell, "Right then lads, let's stand and give 'em what for!" He saw his fellow troopers turn in place and check their weapons.


The Lancer troopers fired and the fierce spearmen came on, undeterred. The mob tore into the formed troops and the Lancer was embroiled in a dusty, yelling, punching, kicking and screaming melee. Weapons came at him from the dust and he parried them with his rifle. Many of his fellows fell. A kick sent him sprawling backwards and down to the earth. Looking up he only saw Pathans, engulfing what was left of his regiment. A horse stood at hand, fearful. He leapt into its saddle and bolted.


As he galloped he saw that one other had made it away and was following him. Everyone else was gone. Gone! How could this be?


He looked to the north and saw the Bengal Native Infantry slowly retreating backwards, firing as they went. There were more wounded than they could carry. They had to halt. To the right the Sikhs were having it no better. They too were dropping, and those who carried the wounded could not be used to fight back against the indomitable Pathans. Irresistibly, the three Colonial units sought each other out for support, not realizing that the others situation was as dire as their own.


All officers were killed or wounded and without direction the units did not get close enough to each other to support the flanks of the others. The Pathans saw the exposed underbelly for what it was and leapt forward to exact final vengence. At that moment the sun dipped below the hills and disappeared from the valley. The Lancer trooper wondered if he would make it until the dawn.

 * * *   *   * * *

It was another amazingly fun and action-packed game of The Sword and the Flame! Will was victorious with his Pathans, and it was a well deserved win! He played a flawless game and was helped along by some fortuitous die rolls and card draws. The Pathans could not miss when shooting on this day, and when they hit he invariably drew a face-card of Hearts. Officers were dropping like flies. We called the game when the outcome was inevitable.

Michael only made two errors, but they compounded on him quickly. The first was dismounting his cavalry (the victory conditions were to leave the table as quickly as possible... why have your fastest troops dismounted?) and the second was continuing to move with the wounded (which didn't allow enough troops to fire back). All that said, Michael's hand was cursed by the spirit of Jason, who is responsible for all Accursed Dice and Unlucky Rolling upon this earth, so maybe rolling more wouldn't have helped him at all. Michael's best shot of the night was when he hit and killed his own scout with a 1 out of 52 chance by pulling the Queen of Hearts. Ouch.

Don't despair Michael, you and Will have both won one game. We'll break the tie soon enough!

Comments

  1. City - I'm glad that you enjoyed it! The Sword and the Flame has yet to disappoint us yet! - Jeff

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