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Kurt_Steiner

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Feb 12, 2005
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My God. Halifax is everywhere!

:D

Well, we just need a good victory to spoil the conspiracy.

Come on, Trekaddict! So many jokes about Haardrade's little trip to Galicia and you're going to end defeated, too?

Wake up!
 

humancalculator

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Let's hope that both plots are foiled, or at least the one in the UK.
 

trekaddict

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Hardraade True. But then again, [censored, official secrets act]. <=== Spoiler alert, sorry.

Atlantic Friend Thanks again.


But I must say it is treason if it means acting against orders. I also think that as Weygand still thinks of himself as part of the Army, the "mon" is warranted.

Kurt_Steiner This is hardly my fault. The majority of the forces fight under a rather different flag, remember? That said, I fear Halifax will find even more supporters when one considers how this is going so far.....:mad:


humancalculator Indeed.
 

Griffin.Gen

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Oh, if you Coup Churchill I'll [Censored, official Secret Act].
Now that's out of my chest, Pétain is pretty much assured to take over France like in OTL, but Halifax on the other hand, there is still hope to secure the British Empire from cowards and traitors!
 

trekaddict

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Griffin.Gen :D Bear in mind that I modified the French Vichy event. Anything can happen.
 

Lord Strange

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Down with Halifax.... The traitorous bastard...... will we get to see aceratian Fleming arresting him perhaps, or is it all classiefied.....
 

trekaddict

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Down with Halifax.... The traitorous bastard...... will we get to see aceratian Fleming arresting him perhaps, or is it all classiefied.....
Well, I know what happens, but MI5 would shoot me if I told you, so.... :D
 

ColossusCrusher

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Just a little nitpick, but there seem to be an awful lot of 'w' where there should be 'r'...:D
 

trekaddict

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Just a little nitpick, but there seem to be an awful lot of 'w' where there should be 'r'...:D
That is intended. Read "The King's First Minister" to find out why. :D
 

ColossusCrusher

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Can I just ask? :p
 

trekaddict

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Griffin.Gen

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Ripping off other people's AAR eh? :mad:
Just kidding, of course.
 

trekaddict

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Le Jones

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Wow, this is surreal, my commenting on Halifax in an AAR!

Very good Trekaddict; you've captured the Edwardian hypocrisy of the whole thing beautifully. I look forward to seeing this plot pan out.
 

trekaddict

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Wow, this is surreal, my commenting on Halifax in an AAR!

Very good Trekaddict; you've captured the Edwardian hypocrisy of the whole thing beautifully. I look forward to seeing this plot pan out.
Thank you, thank you.
 

trekaddict

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Chapter 127




12th July 1940


Military Hospital in southern England

When he woke up for the first time in days he felt the usual post-surgery disorientation. Over the last few weeks he had been shuttled around from hospital to hospital, first in Belgium and France, and now back in Blighty, and each and every time they had operated on him to pull yet another set of splinters from his body. The operation he was currently waking up from was not that, but rather where they had simply removed his appendix, the only reminder of his war wounds were several casts, bandages and a sore feeling all over his body. He slowly opened his eyes and looked around. He was in a different room, probably about two storeys up, as he could still see the tree outside the window at the side of his bed. The ceiling was of a different colour, and the sounds were also different, as he could hear the aircraft from the nearby RAF station much louder than before. Another thing was different, aside from the fresh scar on his abdomen, and it was the woman and two girls sitting at his bedside, waiting for him to wake up. When he realized after a few moments that it were his wife and his two daughters, and that his wife was crying, but trying to hide it, while his two daughters had their eyes closed and were sleeping. Both of them had his red hair, but his wife's green eyes, a look that would make them the bane of his days in a few years. With her black hair and a not classically beautiful face Elizabeth Niemczyk, born Wilkinson had a kind and outgoing personality and was the centre of her husbands world. They had met back when Jan had just come out of Sandhurst, riding the train back north to visit his parents before he left for his first duty assignment. One thing had led to another, and over the next two years they had gotten 'very close' before getting married in 1935. However, it had not been smooth sailing from there, mainly because her father had not approved of the union, citing that as the daughter of a very old family and distant descendant of none other than Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, and a lowly Officer from a Polish immigrant family was 'not good enough' in his opinion. This had not lasted, because in late 1936 the twins had been born, and had instantly charmed over their at first reluctant Grandfather. When Jan had been deployed with the rest of Stafford Battlegroup, his wife and kids had been standing at the pier, crying their hearts out, just like Elizabeth was doing right now. As soon as she noticed he had woken up and was looking at her with a curious stare, her face turned into a blank mask of anger that told him that she still had lost nothing of the temperament that was usually hidden underneath the rest of her.

Mindful of their daughters that were sleeping on her lap, she let him know of her displeasure. “What in the blazes were you thinking... no wait, you didn't think at all! You could have been killed and I would have never known! How could you...” She trailed off, and started to cry again. Aching to touch her, but unable to do so because both his arms were in a cast, he settled for an apologetic gaze. “My god, Lizzie, don't you think I know that? I had nightmares about you raising the girls without me, every damn night since I was wounded. But I decided I couldn't let you do that, so I decided not to die on you.” The flat humour did it's job and a watery smile appeared on the face of his wife. “Oh grow up, will you?” she said with a quivering, low voice that was so uncharacteristic for her that a lump formed in Jan's throat. “Listen love, I will do my utmost always to come back to you. I mean, what would I be without you? Nothing, I tell you. Nothing at all.” Elizabeth opened her mouth and started to reply, but was cut short by two small voices that belonged to her daughters. They struggled to free and launch themselves at their father, but were restrained by their mother. For the next minutes they spoke quietly, before Margaret, the 'older one' ( by a mere thirty-two seconds ) quietly asked, as if she feared the answer. “Daddy, will you come home with us soon?” Jan was at a loss what to say. How to explain a four year old that he probably wouldn't be 'home' for the duration of the war? How to explain that he might not come home at all? He locked eyes with Elizabeth and tried to formulate it in a child-friendly way. “Well my dear, Daddy has to do his job when he is well again, and he might be gone for a very long time, very long.” Charlotte, the 'younger one' cut her sister short and asked: “And when, Daddy?” Jan sighed inwardly and said in a low voice: “I don't know, sweetheart. Whenever they say I can go. But I promise, I will come as soon as I can.” Shifting the theme to more pleasant matters, Jan asked his wife about her work at the local school where she taught English and English Literature. So chatting, they both missed the entrance of another visitor. Walking in front of the entourage following him, the man was known as Duke of Normandy, Lord of Mann, or 'simply' as His Majesty George the Sixth, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas King, King of the British Empire, Defender of the Faiths, Emperor of India, Duke of Lancaster, Lord of Mann, Duke of Normandy, Sovereign of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath, Sovereign of the Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, Sovereign of the Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick, Sovereign of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Sovereign of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, Sovereign of the Distinguished Service Order, Sovereign of the Imperial Service Order, Sovereign of the Most Exalted Order of the Star of India, Sovereign of the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire, Sovereign of the Order of British India, Sovereign of the Indian Order of Merit, Sovereign of the Order of Burma, Sovereign of the Royal Order of Victoria and Albert, Sovereign of the Royal Family Order of King Edward VII, Sovereign of the Order of Mercy, Sovereign of the Order of Merit, Sovereign of the Order of the Companions of Honour, Sovereign of the Royal Victorian Order, Sovereign of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem.

The King strode purposefully towards the single occupied hospital bed in the small three-bed room. Strangely enough it was Elizabeth that spotted the monarch first, but before she could pay her respects, the King told her to remain seated and stepped to the other side of the bed while the photographers flashed away. “You do know that General Hobart recommended you for a decoration, Lieutenant Colonel?” Jan swallowed and nodded as far as he could in his position. “Yes, your Majesty.” The King cleared his throat and said with a sincere smile on his face: “Do you have any idea for what decoration General Hobart recommended you?” “No, Sir.” “Well then. I am graciously pleased to signify Her intention to confer the Decoration of the Victoria Cross on the undermentioned officer, whose claim to the same has been submitted for my approval, for his gallant conduct in Belgium, as recorded against his name." The next minutes and hours were a blur for the freshly designated Jan Niemczyk VC, all he could remember was shaking hands with his Commander in Chief and posing for several photographs that, according to later statements by his wife, were to be sent to them as soon as possible. By the end of it, about an hour later, his wife was sitting beside him again, the two, again sleeping, girls at her side. She had a look on her face that Jan could only describe as a mixture between pride and pain, pride about what had just happened, and pain because of what would happen as soon as he was fit for duty again. She lowered her daughters on a nearby bed, and came closer, taking Jan's right hand in her own. She leaned in and kissed him on his forehead. “I am not mad at you, my husband, I ma just so scared.” “Don't be, I am just doing my bit.”

While the Niemczyks were bonding again, in France one of the most controversial parts of the Battle of France took place. The French had, uncharacteristically fast for them, rushed every spare Division, Brigade and Regiment they could find into the salient south of Ghent. Gamelin had modified a long secret contingency plan that had been developed before the war. Originally intended as a measure to be taken if the British refused to enter the war and left France to fend for her own, the plan was simple. Two spearheads, as fast and as strong as possible, would drive east from the salient, with Mons and Brussels as the long-term goals. This plan was unusually aggressive for the French, and would, if it worked, catch the Axis Divisions advancing south along the Meuse and those that were repeatedly butting their heads against the Stonewall that was the British Expeditionary Force, in the rear and would most certainly delay any larger offensive operations by the enemy in France proper. The Belgians, were instantly in favour of this plan, unlike General Ironside in Paris and Field Marshal Gort in Aldershot. The plan used up a dangerous amount of the French reserves in men and supplies, and was far from perfect. However political pressure from Paris, and to a lesser extent from London compelled the British Generals to agree. What would surprise later historians was the utter surprise the attack achieved. A closer look however reveals that the general state of exhaustion on both sides of the Front and immense amounts of information that came into the Axis intelligence services every day explain why the Germans did in fact detect the buildup but expected the French to attack north into the occupied Netherlands.

When the French unleashed what was to be one of their last offensive action in the Battle of France, they drove hard and they drove fast. Mons fell on the 14th, and on the early hours of the 15th, the French reached a line about five miles to the west of the city limits of Brussels. From there things started to go wrong. When the French tanks resumed their advance about mid-day on the 15th, both spearheads ran into a solid wall of German and Soviet Armour. The critical seven-hour delay during the night and the morning had given the Germans and Soviets the chance to assemble several Divisions to form a stop line. Here, in the centre of the front, the line had dissolved into a pudding of units from all over the Axis powers, with Soviet units under German command and vice versa. However it is a testimony for the skill of the German and Soviet staffs as they still managed to carry out the part that would make the offensive so controversial after the war. They attacked the southern end of the French salient near Brussels and Mons. Breaking through the thin French lines that easily gave way under the pressure, German and Soviet units raced west, towards the coast, in the hope of encircling most of the French Army in northern France. Realizing his error, Gamelin instantly ordered the Army to retreat from their exposed forward positions towards the starting line, but it was too late, as late on the 17th a second, purely German attack from the Netherlands that comprised of several brigades of Paratroopers used as Infantry, Motorized units drawn from the thinning reserve formations in Northern Germany that had been earmarked for 'other operations' crashed into the even thinner lines there. At about midnight the two attacks met, and with that thirty-one French Divisions were encircled. The Generals in command knew that there was no hope of keeping the pocket closed for any length of time, but they hoped that it would force the French to seek a peace. Hitler and Stalin sent separate, yet identical peace offers out over Radio Berlin and Moscow respectively, but both Paul Reynaud and Winston Churchill flatly refused them only hours after they had been broadcast. Over the next two weeks, fierce battles raged in the northern parts of the Pas de Calais, making it the most fought over piece of ground of the war so far. Both sides halted their fronts everywhere else as they focused on the titanic struggle to the North.

What prevented the outright destruction of the French Army was mainly that the morale of the encircled men remained high, and that they had held onto their stocks of supplies and sometimes even had recaptured supplies that had been left behind in the original retreat from Belgium. On July 26th, the biggest attack of the pocket battle was fought when the French forces inside attacked towards Valenciennes, supported by the RAF and parts of the BEF. Dogged resistance by the German 7th Panzer Division that had been transferred there just hours before and by the 124th and 465th Rifle Divisions kept the pocket shut until General Giraud, the French commander of the pocket called off the attack. With this bleak situation July turned into August.






[Notes: I suck at this mushy crap, sorry. Argh. I just realized that I created another set of characters that I will expand beyond anything that was planned at the start. ( Ian and Felix ring a bell? ) Oh and Jan, I hope you don't come to Germany and rip my head off when you read this. I also realized that we need some sort of rotation system for the troops later in the war. Perhaps during the winter pause each year? Coming from a Republic, the bit with the King was kinda hard to write. I was also military-controlling the French for a few days there in order to make this counterattack.]

 

Lord Strange

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Huzaah for the VC! Also, did you get encircled in game or what??

Also who doesn't want this many titles.......
His Majesty George the Sixth, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas King, King of the British Empire, Defender of the Faiths, Emperor of India, Duke of Lancaster, Lord of Mann, Duke of Normandy, Sovereign of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath, Sovereign of the Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, Sovereign of the Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick, Sovereign of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Sovereign of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, Sovereign of the Distinguished Service Order, Sovereign of the Imperial Service Order, Sovereign of the Most Exalted Order of the Star of India, Sovereign of the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire, Sovereign of the Order of British India, Sovereign of the Indian Order of Merit, Sovereign of the Order of Burma, Sovereign of the Royal Order of Victoria and Albert, Sovereign of the Royal Family Order of King Edward VII, Sovereign of the Order of Mercy, Sovereign of the Order of Merit, Sovereign of the Order of the Companions of Honour, Sovereign of the Royal Victorian Order, Sovereign of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem.
 

Kurt_Steiner

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Well, can the Kessel move itself to the Channel? :D

This time the Fernch had hit the bottom, methinks...
 

Raaritsgozilla

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*sighs* yet again I have to catch up. Looks good though! :D