Chapter Two: South's Naval Battle

I set my sights on one of the Officers who were standing on the deck. I had just come over the back rail. I saw one of the officers charging wildly at one of my friends. I couldn't just let that happen. I started to go after the officer, but the crowd was thick. Our men kept pouring onto the ship as their men tried to form a wall to hold us back. I had to fight my way through the crowd. As I managed to get clear of the crowd of my people I found myself face to face with a wall of enemy soldiers. I looked past them in time to see my friend get hit. This sent me into a rage. My club was a double ended club similar to a jousting stick. On end had a mallet type end on it which made a great hammer. I slammed the mallet end into one of my enemy's chest. He hit the ground and clutched his chest. I then swung the other end around once before plowing it into the head of another enemy soldier. This attack of mine left a nice hole for me to get through. I made straight for the officer that was now getting ready to "kill" my friend. As I ran toward him I could feel the men at my back. Everyone around me was using the hole I had made to break throught the line.

I got to the enemy officer just after he had finished cutting my friend's TAG off. He had knocked my friend out with one hit. It was a powerful blow. He had to pay for that. As he was knelt down cutting the TAG I slammed the hammer end of my weapond down on top of his head. The man seemed extreamly dazed. He just turned and looked at me. His jaw was hanging open and he had a blank stare to his eyes. I swung the lower end of my weapon up and struck him across the face. He droped to the deck in a pile. I had gotten my revenge. Now all I had to do was stay alive.

I turned around and saw that my group had broken through the enemy line. We had taken out most of the officers and their gaurds. I could only hope the other ships were having as much luck. I also took this moment of rest to look down onto the main deck. The battle was it's fercest there. I saw men from both sides lying all over the deck. Most of them were the enemy but some were ours. Some men just walked around through the crowd. They got shoved and knocked around but they just kept walking. These men and obviously been hit hard but were't taken out.

We quickly finished taking out the officers and gaurds. Now we had control of the main deck and from the looks of things we also controled most of the port side and the bow of the ship. I was one of the ranking soldiers on the deck at that time so I grabed a group of about ten men and prepared to storm the main deck. The Main Deck was our first goal. Then we were to go into the bowls of the ship and get complete control. We grouped up. I had my group, as did several other ranking soldiers around me. We each called a direction out so we would know which way everyone was going once we hit the Main Deck. I called the Starboard side. The Port was covered and the middle didn't look too bad. I wanted to have some fun. The enemy had made a small fortifcation on the Starboard side. They were trying to keep each other backed up. They were doing a good job at it too. I got my men and charged the wall of men. We hit with a great force. I had told my men not to fight too hard. I just wanted to see if there were any real weakness in their defence, and to see what their stratagy was.

As I had figured they only had one simple stragegy. Not to let us take the ship without a fight. I pulled my men back to regroup. We hadn't lost anyone yet, but we hadn't done any damage either. The enemy was shaped like a cresent. They were trying to let the wounded and tired rest in the middle while the rest fought on the outside. I had a plan.

I ordered my men to charge one spot on the line. Once we made it to the center it would be easier to fight the weak and wounded. The rest of the enemy would have to turn to fight us and that would put their backs to the rest of our forces. I hoped the rest of our forces would take advantage of our distraction.

We grouped close and charged. We crashed like a large tree falling on a little sapling. We snapped through without much trouble. The enemy had worn themselves out. We had made time to rest a little. Most of the opposition was just pushed out of the way. Some of them had to be hit. The rest of our force did catch on immediatly. This had been the last stronghold and now it was going down. Men started to come out from the Main Deck to help us out. Soon there was no resistance. It took another ten minutes or so to search the deck and get all the TAGS. We had to turn all our TAGs into our commanding officer.

After all the TAGs had been turned in we regrouped. Everyone was divided into groups of five. We were going to enter the inside of the ship. We didn't expect to find anything but it was better to be safe then sorry. Each group went a different direction. They also had another group following close behind in case there were any traps set for us. I went in with one of the lead groups.

We took our time searching the ship. We never did find anything. Everyone had come topside for the battle and they were all gone now. My group was inside for a long time so the sun hurt my eyes when I came out again. I looked around and saw that most ships had raised their green flags. The rest at least had their blue flags up.

The flags worked like this. We would raise a red flag before the battle started. This would show everyone that a fight was either about to start or had already started. This flag would wave until we had gained control of the situation. For example. Once we had finished taking control of the Main Deck we raised our Blue flag. We still had work to do but we were in control. The Green flag was raised when everything was done. To use our ship as an example again, we raised our Green flag once we had finished clearing the inside of the ship because only the could we be sure that the battle was over for us.

Everyone that still had the blue flag up was massing on the deck which ment they were getting ready to clear the lower decks of their ship.

It was at that point that the signal officer walked up to the Captain of my ship and handed him a piece of paper.

"New orders from the Command Ship sir." he said as he handed over the paper.

"Thank you. Dismissed." replied the Captain.

The Captain read the paper and then whispered something to his second hand. the Second Hand rounded up the crew on the Main Deck for the Captin to address us with the new orders.

"Good work today Gentlemen," began the Captain. "I'm very proud of all of you. Everyone will share in the rewards of this battle. TAGs will be handed out tonight. Like promised everyone will receive an equal amount of TAGs because we all shared the effort. But now I have new orders for our ship. We are being ordered to hold a patrol here at this port until we have secured the shore. From there we are to patrol the whole coast, along with several other ships, until further notice. We may be called upon to take part in an invation of the enemies ports. That claim is so far unsupported as of yet, but it is possible. For right now, though, I want everyone back on our ship. We'll take a rest for a hour or at least until the rest of the ships have gotten everything taken care of. Then we start our patrols. Again, Congratulations to everyone."

The Captain finished his speach and we all headed back to the ship. The Medics came onto the enemy ship and began to take care of the "dead". We wouldn't see these men again. At least not until after the war was over. The living wounded were taken care of back on our ship.

Back on the ship I had a chance to reflect on what had happened. It didn't seem like it had been that long ago when I was back at the base waiting for the start of the war.

The officers had spent the last couple of weeks in meeting all day, everyday. They were getting a plan ready and it was going to have to be a good one. I don't know exactly what was said but I did manage to find out a lot about the meetings later. That's the advantage of being friends with the Captain.

Everyone knew that the enemy was going to have to take Fasu. Fasu was the only port large enough to accomidate their ships. Other than the Capital. The only problem was that Fasu was a large city. It's main part sat up on top of a big hill. The enemy may be able to take the port but there was no way they could charge up that hill and take the city. Not by themselves anyway. They were going to need the help of a large army. Fasu was also fortified which ment they were going to need a truly large army. We had sent scouts to find the location of this ARMY. They had found them easily. The enemy didn't even try to hide it's location. It was almost as if they wanted us to run to them. Our goal was to keep the port open. We didn't even care about the land based war.

It was obvious that an attack on Fasu would take a lot of cordination. The Land based ARMY was going to need every availible man to take that city quickly. They had to have the city under "Blue Flags" within a day. Otherwise we could easily keep sending more men into the city.

The enemy was also going to have to shut off the port. With the port open the city would never be taken. That's where we came in. We were to keep that port open.

To keep a port of that size and importance open our fleet would have to be large enough to stop anything coming through. This is the way our combat works.

In order to take a large port you must have Dock Crushers and a large support fleet. A typical fleet size would be five large ships. To take a city the size of Fasu the invaders would need at least two fleets and several Dock Crushers. Command knew this so we had an idea of how large their fleet would be. The next step was to find it.

Dock Crushers are large clumsy ships but they get the job done. Their size though, makes them hard to sail. This is especially true out in the open sea. This meant that the ships would have to sail close to the shore. So close in fact, that we would be able to see them. Command dispatched spoters out along the coast to wait. We knew how big the fleet would have to be and where it would have to sail. Now we had to figure out how to find it.

I was assigned to an L.A.S. (Large Attack Ship) called The Loess. I was under the command of Captain Ramosa. He was the one who called the shots on our ship, but not so for the whole fleet. That was the job of Fleet Captain Avilyn. He was the Fleet Commander at sea. Once the fleet was sailing he had the final say in all matters. At least as long as he followed his standing orders. Those standing orders came from Admiral Lomal. The Admiral was the fleets land-based commander. His orders came directly from Command.

It was determained by Admiral Lomal and Command that the enemy fleet must be destroyed completly. If they were willing to commit that many ships to this battle then we must over power them and then out smart them in order to insure our victory. The Admiral chose to leave the exact tactics up to the Fleet Captain because of his experience in sea based warefare.

On the second day after the war started their fleet was spotted by a forward scout leaving their port in Wol. On the third day they were spotted by another scout entering our territory. We had also sent out a few scout ships to get us the exact position of their fleet. Now we needed to beat them.

The scouts had reported that their fleet number ten attack ships and six Dock Crushers. Our fleet was spread out along the shore but when group together was going to be twenty ships and four Dock Crushers. The captain spent the first two days working out a plan. Then, when he was ready, he called up the fleet and delivered the orders.

"Men. I don't think I need to tell you how important this coming battle is going to be. We know the location of the enemy fleet and we currently have scout ships updateing us on their position. We also know the size. I must say that they do have enough ships to take the port at Fasu. However, we have a fleet almost twice their size. If this operation is done correctly we can easily stop them.

This plan may sound a lot different from the way we normally operate but if you will trust me then it will work. The enemy had planned to flank Fasu and hit them from both sides. According to communication from Command the Enemy ARMY is marching toward Fasu at this very moment. With their size and the speed they are marching they are probably not expecting any resistance until they reach Fasu. But we are going to give them resistance. We can not stop them until they reach Fasu but if the land army is able to slowt them down enough then we can secure the port before they reach the city.

I know we have been training you on how to blockade a port and how to fight in the open sea. I'm going to ask you to do a little bit of both. The enemies flanking move is what we shall use against them.

The plan let them take the port at first. In order for them to take the port they will have to spread out their ships to block off the bay. We will wait until they have gotten into position befor we attack. I want the ships to sail in a shape like a "U". This will keep any ships from trying to run. We out number them two to one. That means we will be working in pairs. Each ship captian has their specific orders which they will go over with you all later.

We don't need to worry about the dock being destoryed because the Dock Crushers will be able to act as a new temporary port until after the battle.

I'm going to turn it over to the Ship Captains now. We will be attacking tomorrow once we receive the signal. I want every one rested and ready to go when that order comes in. Dismissed."

The Fleet Captain then turned the rest of the meeting over to the indivdual Ship Captains. The ships all moved away from each other and got into a sailing position. From there we headed off to our waiting point. We were to wait there until the signal came in the form of several flashes of light from mirrors on the shore.

Captain Ramosa took his spot on the bridge and gave us our orders. We were going to sail near the middle of our fleet. We were being joined by another ship. Our ship was the backup ship. That meant the other boat would pull up to the side and start the attack while we took up postion on the aft of the ship. Once the battle was under way our ship would attack and over power the enemy in all the confusion.

The rest of the night passed quickly. Even with all the excitement going on, we still slept like logs. It was hard work sailing that ship so we always slept well.

The next morning we got up and prepared for the fight. That meant we had to put on our armor.

With the battles becoming more physical it was important to wear some protection. We had adopted a nice uniform that was made to give us protection while allowing us a great degree of movement so we could fight. From head-to-toe the uniform went like this. Our helmets came in two types. I wore the simple one which was the minimum required. The helment was just a pair of padded cups that covered the wearers ears. Getting hit in the ears could really mess a persons head up. It messes up your orientation and can knock a person out. The others choise was to wear a full helmet. That protected the wearers entire head, not just their ears. It was a little bit heavier and hotter, but it was worth it if you wanted the protection. I used to wear one when it was cold out just for the warmth.

Moving on down. The body was protected my a vest like piece. This part was sleeveless and tied in the front. It was padded front and back with a soft and breathable material blend we called "itch cloth". You had to wear another shirt under it unless you wanted to itch really bad. This vest helped a lot when you got hit in the gut. It was possible to get a long sleeved version but the padding stopped just above the elbow.

The next part was the shorts. We needed something that wasn't too hot. That's why shorts were given. If a person got cold they just had to wear some long pants under them. The shorts were padded in the seat of them in case you got knocked on your butt. There was also padding around the front of the legs. The padding was thin around the sides because it wasn't needed and it made the shorts lighter. Again the shorts were made from "itch cloth". The final part of the required uniform was the Shin Guards. These were a hard molded material that protected the lower legs. Part of the guards came up and covered the knees. Getting hit hard in the leg just once could put a fighter out of action. It was possible to get Arm Guards as well but not too many people bothered to wear them. All-in-all the uniform was very comfortable and offered the best protection possible. That could be why we always did so well in combat.

I got my uniform on and picked up my weapon. I was a front line fighter so I had to carry the full battle stick. Officers only carried a small club on their belt because they weren't expected to fight. It was mostly for self-defence.

Now I had on my full uniform and my weapon. It was getting close to the time when we expected the enemy fleet to be closing in. We all met on the upper deck so that our Captain could address us breifly.

"Good morning men. I see most of you are all ready for todays events. Those of you not in uniform yet will need to get dressed before we make it to the port. We want to be fully ready when the combat begins. I've been told I need to give you all some instructions before the battle. As you all know the object is to get your enemies TAG. The problem come as when. Command has sent down this order. We are not to remove enemy TAGs until after the area is secured. Then we will all spit the TAGs equally. Everyone is to do their part in winning the battle and everyone will share equally in the rewards. If you know you beat so many men then that's all that matters. As long as you know how good you did. If you hide during the battle and beat noone then you know how bad you did. And that is all that matters. Feel free to keep your own score in your head and record it later, but everyone will share the rewards when this is all over. If anyone objects to this system you must speak with the Fleet Commander. That's all I have for now. Deck Officers do you have anything to add?"

That Captain turned to all of his Officers to see if they had any comments to make. When noone stepped forward the Captain turned back to us and continued.

"I expect everyone to do their best today and work as a team. You do exactly what we've trained you to do and we will win this battle without any trouble at all."

Just after the Captain stopped speaking the Watchman yelled out that the signal was being given. We all rushed to our positions around the deck. The ships sailed into position and headed for the port.

Chapter One
Chapter Three

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