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CSherrange
03-27-2015, 21:25
The commodore has called Captain Vernon Flemming aboard the flagship.


"Capt. Flemming, your orders are to take your ship the Vanguard and prevent the French fleet from breaking out of the harbor. I advise you to be cautious with the crew, as even though this squadron's previous engagement was successful, the strain placed on the local populace to refill the numbers back to full has been too great. This will not be an easy task, as even though we know the enemy is breaking out, we do not know in what force. We also know the island guarding the bay has two French batteries on it as well.
Godspeed, and keep the French fleet bottled up!"

Capt. Flemming weighs his options. Although his crew and marines are primed for a fight, he declines the risk of a night assault upon the island. Although the decision was his, he decides to not be nearly as reckless as Lt. Owen was in the previous engagement involving the squadron.

At dawn Capt. Flemming has his vessel in perfect position to watch the harbor. The enemy island, bristling with guns is clearly visible. No French activity has been noticed as of yet.

"SAIL HO!", the lookout cries. Dear God!, it's the enemy flagship the Commerce De Marseille! Capt. Flemming finished breakfast and then calls all the crew together for prayer and a speech.

"Ahead boys is our destiny! Men to your stations!", he instructs everyone. "Wind's on our side boys, that's all we need!"

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After the first few maneuvers, it is clear the French 1st rate's decision to break out into the head wind is having a great effect on it's movement. She is being forced to constantly beat against the wind to gain position. Capt. Flemming sees his opportunity to gain an advantageous position with the weather gauge. Seeing the difficulty the enemy ship is having in the channel, Capt. Flemming has regrets about not seizing the enemy batteries, as they would have been able to inflict a lot of damage on the enemy ship.

The Vanguard's opening broadside rakes the Commerce through the bow. The rudder is hit, and some damage is inflicted. After tacking another turn into the wind, the Commerce is able to return a broadside against the Vanguard. Unfortunately, the broadside mostly damages the crew.

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As the ships dance in the wind, they exchange another broadside. The Vanguard's once again mostly damages the crew and does some minor hull damage. The Commerce is mostly
unhurt, except for a lucky shot that holes her and another that brings a mast down!

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after some more maneuvering, another broadside is exchanged. The commerce is mostly undamaged, save for another hole. The Vanguard takes more crew damage. Capt. Flemming is starting to run out of bodies. Capt. Flemming decides to load chain on the port side after this broadside, hoping to reduce the enemy 1st rate's rigging further.



After some more moving, the French first rate is starting to break away, even with a mast down. The next few minutes, with a lost mast and into the wind, the French first rate dances in nearly every direction. They finally repair the mast and are back to full sail shortly. Another set of broadsides is exchanged with more damage to the Vaguard's crew, and another hole to the Commerce.

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The ships once again line up for a broadside, potentially the last before the French ship will break away to the open sea. The French ship fires, and once again devastates the crew. Nearly no one is left to even sail the Vanguard. this broadside also has devastating effects on Capt. Flemming personally, as he takes 2 minor wounds and a wound that will have him recovering for a scenario after this.

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The Vanguard returns fire, and completely shoots away the enemy rudder, in addition to bringing down another mast! This reduction in mobility has the Commerce turning back towards port. A wounded Captain Flemming, looking around, himself wounded, and with almost no one left to even sail the Vanguard home, decides his job is finished and heads back towards the squadron.

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Final Logs-

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CSherrange
03-27-2015, 21:26
Capt. Fleming/ RTP/ Wounded (out 1 scenario)/ 1 point
AI/ RTP/ Not wounded

CSherrange
03-27-2015, 21:27
The saving grace was the lumbering nature of the first rate into the wind, and the lucky draws with the critical hits. 2nd scenario where my ship was down to one crew box again though. Time to paint my ships Red. :sad:

Naharaht
03-27-2015, 23:17
Thank you for posting this AAR. :thumbsup:

TexaS
03-28-2015, 13:17
Having a battery helped me when facing a first rate in this scenario, especially when the wind is against it.

It was a fun read. Nice to see someone else facing the dreaded first rate.

Bligh
06-27-2015, 14:22
Another aspect of this AAR is unveiled, with the decision to leave the battery alone, and take on a superior enemy.
Well done in your endevour Charles.
i enjoyed every descriptive minute of the action and the fact that you did actually turn the enemy about with his tail between his legs.
Rob.

Union Jack
06-27-2015, 15:31
A very brave decision. And taking on a first rate. A speedy recovery for your captain.