Friday, December 31, 2010

Ardoberg Enquirer Special Report - Te Deum

Church bells all across the Electorate are ringing to proclaim the great victory won yesterday at the battle of Treadgar Bridge. Our reporter is unclear about how the battle began as he arrived late to the field. One would think there would be a bridge somewhere in the vicinity of Treadgar Bridge, but there isn't one, so it's not my fault. Plus, the local peasantry thinks misdirecting travellers is funny. But, I digress.

The army of San Maurice was repelled in a closely fought action that featured brilliant tactical decisions on the part of the Elector Fredrich Wilhelm offset by the San Maurician King's dumb luck and the unstable aggression of the Dauphin of San Maurice, Timothy Rupert. His handling of the San Maurician cavalry and Household Infantry Brigade caused the Elector some momentary discomfort, but the situation was restored when our gallant British allies stood firm against the tide of wild horsemen. The British commander, Lord Muggles imagines himself the author of the victory but readers of the Enquirer know better.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Holstein Military Academy band

The Holstein Military Academy band performs stirring martial music at the Marchfeld review to stir our young Hectors to new heights of valor. Or, if not valor, at least compliance with orders. Compliance would be nice.

The Holstein Military Academy is run by the Irish Christian Brothers as a school for well born young men of the Electorate who are not yet of military age. In some conflicts the Senior Class has provided a battalion of light infantry to the army but it is not expected they will take the field in the current conflict, as the terms of their probation forbid possession of firearms and leaving the state. Yes, their conduct in the past has led to some misunderstandings. They are basically good boys with an imperfect understanding of the finer points of the law.

The infantry of the expeditionary corps

The infantry of the expeditionary corps parades before the Elector before setting out for the frontier. Five regiments have been mobilized for the campaign (so far). They are, front row left to right, The Electoral Footguard, Ardoberg Grenadiers, Diefenbach, Pfalz Zweibrucken and Kurmainz. Back row left to right, Wiesbaden and Saarbrucken.

The Footguard were a gift 30 years ago from my friend/nemesis the King of San Maurice so, in his words, he would have "something worth shooting at". Diefenbach and Weisbaden are my two oldest regiments, raised in the mid 1970s. The first is named after my Grandfather, a Colonel in the German Army in WWI. He finished the war with a chest full of medals, numerous Great Wounds that little boys found impressive and an endless supply of war stories that left me confused about who won that war well into middle age.

The Marchfeld

The Elector reviews his troops in preparation for the march on the capital of San Maurice. Here we see the cavalry element of the expedition, consisting of the Leib Curraissers, Leib Dragoons and Carpathian Hussars. These units have been in service for a number of decades and the Elector can't help noticing their uniforms are looking a little worn. Perhaps a little freshing up is in order. Dragoons always get the leftover horses when cavalry mounts are purchased. Some fear that the Lieb Dragoons mounted on Hinchliffe ponies might be at a disadvantage against the mighty Stadden steeds of the San Maurician cavalry. "Not so" says our cavalry brigadier general Seywhut. "Our Dragoon ponies are trained to slip beneath those overstuffed Stadden nags and bite them in the nether regions. That should swiftly decide any cavalry action in our favor. besides, no matter how powerful their horses are, the San Maurician cavalry are still San Maurician."

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Holstein regiments leave for the frontier

Here we see two of our brave regiments preparing to join the main army on the frontier. They are, in fact, the Pfalz-Zweibrucken and Kurmainz regiments, both from Holstein. As you may recall from your school days, The principalities of Ardoberg and Holstein were joined together in 1673 when the Elector of Ardoberg won the Duchy of Holstein from the Holy Roman Emperor in a late night poker game. While there has always been some degree of friction between the dour, Lutheran Ardobergers and the more easy going Catholic Holsteiners, overall the merger has been a successful one. The Holstein infantry continue to wear their gray or white uniforms in contrast to the Ardoberg blue. One would think there would be some risk of battlefield confusion, as the San Maurician native born infantry wear white. The problem is fairly limited by the fact that the King of San Maurice recruits from Germany, Ireland, Scotland and anywhere else he can to avoid arming his own people as far as possible. All of these foreign regiments wear colors other than white.

To horse!

The Ardoberg-Holstein drillmasters are being kept busy preparing a new regiment of Curraissers to take the field. The new regiment, as yet unnamed, is being outfitted with uniforms as we speak. If time allows they will be taught how to ride and handle their weapons before the campaign season opens.

A theological discussion

Here we see the Elector having a theological discussion with his friend the Bishop of Ardoberg about the existance of Santa Claus. The Bishop holds that there is no such person. If that's true, argues the Elector, how can we explain the Christmas Day arrival of a new cavalry regiment on the eve of our campaign against San Maurice?

The newly recruited troopers appear to be Perry Napoleonic Curriassers who have had their heads replaced with Wargames Factory tricornes.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Ardoberg Enquirer - Gracious Dining section

The wolfman is once again active in the forests of southern Holstein. After several years without an attack the woodlands of that region are again a place of great danger for parties travelling through. Or at least for the slowest runner in each of those parties. When the attacks first took place a number of years ago an attempt to organize a party to hunt the creature down and destroy it were thwarted in court by the animal rights group PE?TA (Peasants Eaten? That's Alright).

Expert monster hunter Brother Murphy recently entered the forest with his cudgel for the purpose of converting the monster to Catholicism. but he hasn't been seen since, and the worst is feared. The Elector has dispatched the battalion of Carpathian Pandours to the region to deal with the threat, as they have experience in such matters. Opposition to this move by PE?TA ended abruptly when they were eaten by the monster on their way to meet with their lawyer.

The Bureau of Revenue by Any Means reminds our readers that, if you are a werewolf, you must obtain a license and pay the 25 thaler fee.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

War declared!

Ardoberg Enquirer Special edition

War has broken out between Ardoberg-Holstein and its neighbor to the West, San Maurice. This unfortunate state of affairs is the result of the recent border incident at Lesser Horkheimer. Our military affairs correspondent has taken a break from covering details of the affairs the men of our gallant officer corps are engaged in so he can report on preparations for the coming conflict.

At this point, both combatants have 12 units available to take the field, with many more that can be mobilized in the coming months. The units available to Ardoberg-Holstein are:
Lieb Curraissers
Lieb Dragoons
Carpathian Hussars
Electoral Footguard
Ardoberg Grenadiers
Diefenbach Regiment
Wiesbaden Regiment
Saarbrucken Regiment
Pfalz-Zweibrucken Regiment
Kurmainz Regiment
Battery A, Artillery Corps
Battery B, Artillery Corps
Oops, did I say that out loud?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Hieland Laddies

Clan Haggis has been particularly unreasonable in the matter of accepting 'German George' as the legitimate king of Scotland and England. Each year on Saint Andrews birthday the 14th Earl of Glenallachie and hereditary Chieftain of Clan Haggis, 'Red Dougie' MacArdo raises the Jacobite standard on behalf of the 'king across the water'. The clansmen then run amok, stealing other peoples cows and sheep until the government regiments come out to fight. After a 'bluddie grrreat fecht', win or lose, the contented clansmen return to their remote glens and valleys for another year.

Ardobergers abroad

Young well born Ardoberg-Holstein gentlemen often spend a year or two serving as gentlemen volunteers in the wild regions of their British 'friends' empire. A good way to pad the resume and come home with exotic stories to impress the frauleins.
The British regiments attempting to pacify the Scottish highlands often include small numbers of these German adventurers.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Battle of Lesser Horkheimer

Ardoberg Enquirer
All the news that’s fit to print, and then some

The Battle of Lesser Horkheimer
Another border incident provoked by San Maurician aggression, covered by our fashion reporting team of Wilhelm Fredrich von Kitten and Joan Rivers.

Joan: Well, Willie, it looks like King Louie Phillipe is at it again. You just never know when he is going to act up in public.

Willie: Are you kidding me? Have you ever been to Lesser Horkheimer? I say let him keep it.

Joan: Who cares who winds up with that trailer park! Lets talk about what everyone was wearing.

Willie: Yes, lets! Did you see the Elector’s infantry? Dark blue this and dark blue that, blah, blah, blah. I don’t think Lutherans should even be allowed to go to war if they aren’t going to take the trouble to dress properly. And what’s up with those Death’s Head Hussars? Black hat, black tunic, black pelisse, black stretch pants? Only an Ardoberger could find a way to make a hussar uniform boring. And, not for nothing, but some people shouldn’t wear stretch pants. I’m talking to you, Fritz. Lay off the strudel!

Joan: Oh, I know! And how about the British contingent? Can we talk? Simon’s Regiment of Foote in red. Palin’s regiment in red. The Hanoverian regiments in …wait for it…red. It’s like they’re all shopping at the same Walmart. And Lord Muggles accessorizing with that little dog that follows him everywhere. That’s so last year, sweetie. It’s been done. They could really learn something from the San Marisians. When their army takes the field it looks like a bomb went off in a pimp convention!

Willie: That’s right girlfriend! Even their horses are gaudy. The saddle cloths for the Horse Grenadier regiment look like that dress you wore to the party last week.

Joan: What! What! C’mere you little weasel!…..

Willie: Not the hair! NOT THE HAIR!…..

Continued on page 11
Editor’s note: The battle of Lesser Horkheimer was fought to a conclusion. There was some fighting and shooting. A lot of noise and smoke, and somebody won, or something.