Thursday, 12 January 2012

Skirmish at Mano Cena

Srjan and his merry men had snuck back over the Hungarian border from a succesful night's rustling liberation campaigning and were getting breakfast from  the farmers at the little hamlet of Malo Cena, trading one of their newly liberated ducks for a good feed.

Two of his men had gone to Old Man Popovic's barn to get fresh eggs, and he had posted two men as lookouts at the bottom of the meadow, and young  Milos, his brave but impetuous cousin,  was trying to impress the farmer's daughter next door with his newly "liberated" brass trumpet. Tea was brewing and life was looking good on this clear late winter's day, when suddenly a shot rang out from the cornfields and one of the pickets pitched forward, face downward.

There was pandemonium as armed men ran up the stairs to the top floors of the farmhouses while farmers rushed their families down the stairs and away. From the bedroom of Old Popovic's house Srjan saw puffs of smoke from the cornfields...and advancing men. They were fanning out to reconnoitre all the houses in the hamlet, and moving fast

At that all the men started shooting wildly from the houses. Old Popovic shook his head, took his rifle off the wall, loaded it, took aim and shot - and one of the Hungarians dropped down, dead, at a long range. "That is how you fight" he said.

The Hungarians stopped advancing at that, and then started shifting to their right, clearly planning to stay out of effective range, take the barn as a strongpoint, and then advance. The 2 men in the barn hesitated and then ran for the houses, but one didn't make it, and fell.

What followed was a furious exchange of fire from the Hungarians in the cornfields and the TransSyldavians in the farmhouses. The Hungarians were the better soldiers (Old Popovic, who had been in The Wars, reckoned they were real Grenzers and some even had rifles) but the Syldavians had hard cover and being outdoorsmen were pretty good shots.

After about an hour it was clear the Hungarians had decided the farmhouses were too well defended to take and were retiring, and so young Milos stood up and leaned out the window to see them off with his trumpet (and impress the farmer's daughter). Sadly for him, the Hungarians turned, took one last shot, let a volley fly and Milos pitched over the windowsill and fell to the ground, stone dead.

The cock-a-hoop bravado of breakfast was gone, the only good news was when Timohir got up and limped back from the barn, his leg wound was not too serious, but he had been so shocked by being shot he'd fainted. He still had the eggs, though.

Old Popovic started harnessing his horse to his waggon. "They'll be back, he said, "and I think its time the family took a little holiday with my brother in town"

(We played this opening skirmish game using Songs of Drums and Shakos, the 300 pts of TranSyldavians  were represented by Albanian Irregulars from the Ottoman Napoloeonic list, the 400 pts of Hungarians  were Grenzers and 2 Jaegers from the Austrian list)

1 comment:

  1. Very true, next time the line infantry will siege the village! I promise. :)