The Author's Views
The Author's Views
Arch-Duke Mikal sat on his charger as his troops plodded around the low hill he had halted on. The army had been following the Kellerite force for two days now. Periodically the retreating Kellerites would turn and fight a small rearguard but would quickly leave once the Hoysee troops had deployed. Frustrating but if the Kellerites did not stop soon they would reach Kleine Hoysee.
Rumours had reach the army that some sort of insurrection had broken out in the river port and that the invading Kellerites were heading back to suppress the up rising. The Arch-Duke had no time for radicals, although they could sometimes be useful in causing trouble in somebody else’s lands. His ideal solution was to arrive at Kleine Hoysee after the insurrection had been suppressed but before the Kellerites could prepare a defence of the town.
The Arch-duke’s revelry was disturbed as a dispatch ride from the 4th Brigade’s scouts arrived and was intercepted by on on Mikal’s aide-de-camps. News perhaps he urged his horse down the slope to where his staff were studding a hastily unrolled map.
The small village of Rylands Hey stood in a defile formed by an old long silted up arm of the Great River and a substantial area of wood land. It looked like finally the retreat was over and finally the armies would get to grips. Mikal had studied the map if they could break through here the way was open to Kleine Hoysee. From reports it looked as if the village was defended by a single Kellerite brigade. The approach had started during the dark after some discussion on whether to await the rest of the Reserve brigade before engaging. But the forces seemed to favour Hoysee so the 4th Brigade advanced on the left while what of the reserves that had arrived were on the right. In the light of day it was obvious that a small rivulet and hummock, missing from the map, narrowed the defile further leaving just enough space to fully deploy the 4th.
The battle opened on the left as the 4th mountaineers supported by a battalion from the 4th Infantry Regiment drove the Kellerite Jaeger from the wooded area. In the centre a gallant cavalry charge caught the Kellerite guns in two minds and rode hem down suffering heavy losses in the process the Hoysee cavalry withdrew taking no more part in the affair. While a fire fight developed along the front of the 4th with Kellerite Artillery proving little effect. The action switched to the right where after driving of another battalion guarding the knoll the Hoysee Artillery deployed protected by the knoll from long range fire it was able to sweep the battlefield right up to the village. The original Kellerite brigade fell back into the village as another arrived to threaten the flank of any advance towards Rylands Hey.
After a short fire fight the 4th advanced to on this new threat only to be repulsed. While the reserves manoeuvred to assault the village enemy cavalry arrived. Again the 4th launched an assault this time successfully driving most of the Kellerite infantry of the battlefield and forcing the cavalry to withdraw to the flank.
The final assault by the Reserve Brigade captured the village as the sun set. The breakthrough had been achieved but a whole day had been lost and the Hoysee army was in no state to immediately follow up in pursuit. The Kellerite cavalry was as yet undefeated and perfectly capable of preventing any close pursuit of the once more retreating Kellerites.
THE AFTERMATH. The scene overlooking Kleine Hoysee was dismal with smoke rising from some districts. A few refugees from the insurrection had told of how the Kellerite army was now in control. From is position the Arch-duke could see troops preparing defences. If he wanted to retake the town it would need all of his forces and even then he could not completely invest the town. Flamboyance territory was too close and the harbour was still open. He could see river traffic bring in more troops and supplies. It was going to be a long war.