A runner-boy interrupted his musings, exasperated and gasping at the frozen air. "My Lord, it's... it's... the fleet, they attacked the Eyrie, Admiral Cromwell took control of the Southern Fleet, stating you as a madman tilting at windmills and chasing ghosts, and immediately set to sea to attack". The runner by now had begun to catch his breath in the cold air, giving the statistics with time worn efficiency "the Achilles sunk, along with the vessels from S-Class. Frigate squadrons 1 through 4 all destroyed". Melchett's only reply was "Who controls the Eye now?". The runner needed only to say one word, "Sheridan".
With that word, Melchett's course of action was clear. The Thunderchild immediately turned around, and set sail at full steam back to the home port of Christ's Church. There he knew was the valuable ship yards and the better part of the Southern Fleet. It was a full 4 day's steam away, he just prayed that Sheridan stayed distracted enough by the Eye that he would not press home his advantage....
It was when Melchett reached the harbor at Christ's Church that news of the FSA fleet. Hawk Scouts had been trailing the ships as they left the Eye, Sheridan's flag flying high above the lead Battleship. It was clear they were headed away from the Eye, seeking the safer port of the Phoenix Islands. Clearly they had also received news of the intense storms which were expected for the area of the Eye, and sought safe port for their ill equipped paddle steamers.
Gathering his fleet, Melchett set off at full steam for the Phoenix Islands, with the intent of arriving as the storm closed, to make advantage of the Brittanian vessel's superior oceangoing capabilities.
|The HMS Thunderchild with her supporting vessel, the HMS King George|
|Cruisers HMS Colossus, Vanuard and Excelsior with supporting frigate class vessels.|
Melchett caught the FSA fleet leaving the Phoenix Islands, with bitter squalls effecting air support capabilities, the supporting reconnaissance and Hawk Scouts were unable to fly, and quickly quit the battle. Melchett caught the enemy vessel's abeam, ordering all of the forward turrets on the Thunderchild to target the enemy battleship off in the distance. The four turrets forward of the bridge spat forth round after round, targetting the core of the enemy battleship. Few were caught in a haze surrounding the ship, but one shell struck through, crashing into the enemy vessel causing an eruption of green fire, known among sailors as the "green dragon"- signalling an eruption of the fusion generators which powered the ship. Torpedoes rippled forth from the front of the Thunderchild, striking the enemy battleship. The enemy vessel was crippled, suffering extreme damage from both gunnery and torpedoes, and soon sank below the waves once the Thunderchild's supporting vessel, the HMS King George joined fire.
The second enemy battleship, bearing Sheridan's color's skulked off around a nearby island, leaving the other ship to it's fate. It was only the first battleship's supporting Cruiser squadrons that sought to engage the British fleet, only to suffer the same fate as the Battleship, as the combined fire from the Dreadnought, Battleship and Cruisers were far too much for the small vessels to handle.
The only loss was sustained when a group of enemy torpedo bombers struck the cruiser HMS Colossus below decks, causing a fire below decks, causing the crew to abandon ship. Fortunately the ship was able to be saved, the vessel is currently under tow back to the safe harbor of Christ's Church.
In the confusion caused by the damage to the Colossus, the enemy battleship had escaped out of operational range. Despite the high seas, the enemy battleship was able to run at full steam out of the Phoenix Islands, the FSA quitting the area completly.
Melchett stood impassivly, watching the bow of the enemy Battleship finally succumb to the waves, as frigates moved in to collect those sailors who abandoned ship. The Thunderchild had defeated Sheridan again, but it was without a doubt that the FSA would return.
As the Thunderchild set sail once again for Christ's Church, Melchett could only think, Brittania's interests are preserved once again.
|Melchett's map of the Pacific|
So another super fun Dystopian Wars game, the Thunderchild proved it's worth exceptionally, taking just 2 turns to sink a FSA Battleship- crippling Jamie's ability to do damage to the Dreadnought, which would only mean it could keep doing more and more damage to the FSA with no fears of reprisals. It is sad that to make KoB work well, you have to take the Dreadnought, because of it's brutal effectiveness it is hard to pass up, but I don't want to use it all the time either!
Melchett will be back....