Ambush in Timbogo
A Savage Sunday Pulp Adventure starring:
Darrin Morris as Oscar Carson, The Diggers and a Cameraman.
Brenda Meyer-Burt as Henry Daventhorpe, Charlie Davis, and Sefu
John Burt as the Askaris and the cowardly baggage porters
And myself, Tim Brown, as Baroness Nadia Smirnov, Captain Alexi Smirnov, Herr Doktor Dietrich Von Ravenhoff, Ernst Liechmann, the Russian Infantrymen, and Baluchi mercenaries.
In our last very exciting episode our heroes having escaped from Suakala with the Mask on Amenakken IV crossed over into Timobogo. They had headed out of town the way they had come then backtracked to the border to throw off any trackers. When they turned back towards Timbogo they had even sent part of their hired Askaris off in a different direction to further confuse any pursuers. Thus having made the arduous trek through the pass that marked the border they were feeling pretty safe.
Little did they know a sixth expedition had arrived at Suakala, late, just hours after the British and American expeditions had left. The expedition was lead by Doktor Dietrich Von Ravenhoff and his loyal lieutenant Ernst Liechmann. Together with their band of hired Baluchi thugs they searched the town.
All they found was the remains of the Russian expedition holed up in a house on the edge of town. After speaking with them he realized the group he would be pursuing was a formidable one. Von Ravenhoff thus recruited the Russians that could walk to aid him in his pursuit for a cut of the treasure, but planned to double cross them as soon as the mask was in his hands.
The Russians, for their part, also fully intended to double-cross the Germans at the first available opportunity.
The German’s expert trackers weren’t fooled by Davis and Daventhorpe’s clever ruse. Once across the border they made up time as Von Ravenhoff new this jungle like the back of his hand. He had been the commander of military forces in the small German colony of Timbogo during the Great War and had waged a successful guerilla campaign against the invading British, French, Belgians and Portuguese from the surrounding colonies for the duration of the war.
As dawn drew near, on a particularly wet morning in early July of 1922, the Germans and Russians approached the encampment of the British and American expeditions.
(click on the pictures for a bigger version)
Captain Alexi Smirnov and his White Russian soldiers pick their way through the dense jungles of the Timbogan Highlands.
Ernst Liechmann and his Baluchi mercenaries approaching the encampment.
All was quiet in the camp. Three Askaris stood guard along with the native guide, Sefu. As the Askaris mulled about trying to get a fire going to cook breakfast on the ever-watchful Sefu stood up suddenly and shouted a warning; “Der is mens in dees woods!” Before anyone could react the Baluchis opened fire with their single shot breech-loaders filling the air with thunder-like noise and smoke!
The Baluchis with Von Ravenhoff open fire on the camp.
Chaos ensued within the camp! Askaris, diggers, porters and our heroes all stumbled over each other as they struggled to get up and get their bearings.
Chaos in the Camp.
Though startling the initial volley of fire from the mercenaries had little actual effect. Sefu fired back, then the Askaris fired, having finally gathered up their rifles, and shot down one of the mercenaries.
Charlie Davis rolled out of the back of his tent only to find Russians creeping about back there. He took a wild shot at them with his shotgun as he sprang to his feet. The Russians fire was far more accurate; a bullet tore through Davis’ thigh, shattering bone, spinning him about and pitching him sideways into the bush. (Four wounds, couldn’t soak any…. oh dear…)
Daventhorpe crawled out the other end of the tent just as an Askaris fell over dead on top of it. Another fell to the earth in front of him. The Baluchi mercenaries, it seemed, had suddenly remembered how to shoot their rifles. Two more would go down as Daventhorpe crawled about trying to get his bearings. The remaining two Askaris joined him behind the cover of some crates.
Sefu stood like a rock in the open; loading, aiming and firing. Though his first Shot had ricocheted off a branch, missing Von Ravenhoff by millimeters, his second shot took down one of the mercenaries. He then spotted Liechmann and his thugs off to the right. His next bullet went through Liechmann’s left eye, spraying brains over the vivid green leaves of the jungle and tossing his mighty form back against a tree like a rag doll (six wounds! Could only soaked one…!)!
The Russians fanned out in the bush around the Northeast end of the camp. They shot two of the diggers. Rather than cower like the Askaris, the Diggers were enraged by the loss of two of their number they charged into the bush after the Russians. One smashed a Russians face in with his shovel, another had his bell rung but was still standing. Despite the diggers initial success the Russians quickly rallied from the shock of the assault and ran two diggers through with bayonets. The remaining one fought back another moment, parrying bayonet thrust with his umbrella but he was soon surrounded and overcome by the ruthless Russians.
The Diggers assault on the Russians
Carson finally stumbled out of his tent to find the cameraman already set up and filming! He followed on the heels of the diggers charge and found himself face to face with Captain Smirnov. He swung at the Russian with his big stick. The Russian parried and slashed back cutting Carson seriously in the side. While Carson was reeling from the initial blow, Smirnov hacked again wounding him again in the arm. Carson went down hard.
Seeing Carson go down Daventhorpe leveled his shotgun at the Russian Captain and fired. A large chunk of the tree next to him exploded into splinters. The Russian didn’t even notice!
Smirnov stepped forward raising his shaska to deliver a finishing blow to Carson when he was thrown back into the bushes with a terrible, sharp pain in his shoulder. Sefu had now shot him.
The Askaris rallied and sought better cover. They exchanged fire with the mercenaries but could not get the better of them. One Baluchi went down, but them an Askari did as well. Then last one went down firing.
The native baggage carriers had simply gotten up and ran off into the woods. The mercenaries sent a volley their way to ensure that they kept on going, killing one of them.
Von Ravenhoff lead his mercenaries out of the woods and charged across the camp and sliced at Daventhorpe with his sword. Daventhorpe gave him a short sharp blow to his face with the butt end of his shotgun. Ravenhoff reeled back completely stunned.
(Okay at this point it’s a new turn, cards are dealt, Ravenhoff and Daventhorpe BOTH get jokers! We’re sort of using showdown rules with some stuff from the RPG for fun so they roll for fortune and calamity. Ravenhoff gets a benny; Daventhorpe rolls “Twist of Fate” and takes it away from him. They did an opposed agility roll to see who got to go first. Daventhorpe won….)
A second blow from Daventhorpe crushed Ravenhoff’s nose, fractured his cheekbone and sent teeth a score of teeth scattering to the ground. Von Ravenhoff staggered backwards, but did not go down! Rather he shook his head, pat out a few more teeth and recovered himself! He held up his hand and said; “THTOP!” with blood drooling down his chin.
The ten remaining mercenaries gathered behind Von Ravenhoff in a line. With a quick glance behind him Daventhorpe could see Sefu was fighting off three Russians single-handedly. He cast another quick glance about the camp and realized he and Sefu were the only ones still standing.
Realizing the situation was hopeless Daventhorpe lowered his shotgun and asked the German; “Yes… well… What are your terms, then..?”
“Luh dun yuh ums and guv uth the muthk un yuh cuhn guh fweh!” was the Germans bloody reply.
“I have your word as a Gentleman, then?” asked Daventhorpe.
“Un muh uhnuh!” relied Von Ravenhoff.
“Fair enough…” said Daventhorpe as he dropped his shotgun and slowly, half-raised his hands.
Sefu had broken off and tried to run from the Russians. As he ran one of the Russians stabbed him in the back with a bayonet. Sefu stumbled, tripped and fell to the ground.
The German again yelled “THTOOOP!” with another gout of blood issuing forth from his mangled mouth.
The Russians stopped. Von Ravenhoff cast a look back at his mercenaries, and then turned back to the Russians. He shouted something completely unintelligible, which Daventhorpe could only imagine was a gurgling attempt at Russian, and the mercenaries leveled their rifles at their erstwhile partners.
Daventhorpe and Von Ravenhoff, toe to toe, with the Russians in the background. Sefu crawling away, wounded in the back. The Baluchi mercenaries gather.
“NYET!” screeched the Baroness, as she emerged from the bushes, intensely white against the vivid green of the jungle.
Daventhorpe heard the clatter of the Russians behind him raising their rifles towards the mercenaries. He dropped to the ground grabbing his shotgun and rolled, sideways, out of the way. He came out of his roll in a prone firing position and leveled his shotgun at Captain Smirnov.
The Mercenary Baluchis and Russians exchanged fire, it was hard to say who shot first. The initial volleys were pretty ineffective from both sides, though Ravenhoff caught a Russian bullet in the shoulder and went down.
Sefu, who, during the brief standoff, had dragged himself and his rifle behind some crates, shot and killed one Russian. Then another went down from the second shots of the Baluchis and the remaining Russians sought cover in the jungle.
The Baroness shot at Daventhorpe, but missed. Daventhorpe placed his shot square in the center of the Russian Captain’s chest. He seemed to implode as he flew backwards into the jungle out of sight. Daventhorpe then aimed at the Baroness and shot her, peppering her side with shot, staining her furs with her own noble blood. She turned and fled into the Jungle.
Sefu shot and killed another Russian, and then the mercenaries killed another. The remaining Russian tossed his rifle into the air and tore off into the jungle after the baroness….
The carnage after the smoke cleared and dust settled.
When the smoke from the Baluchis obsolete guns cleared all was quiet.
Daventhorpe, who knew most languages still spoken in central Africa, not to mention several that no one has spoken for centuries, offered the Baluchis double their current wages for their services. They accepted and began to gather up the wounded and clean up the carnage.
Davis was found after a short search. He was in a very bad way. He would remember little of the events of this morning – or for many days to follow for that matter. He would eventually recover but walked with a limp for the rest of his days, and never did go anywhere very quickly (new hindrance: LAME!).
Smirnov’s body was also recovered and he was very dead, as was Ernst Liechmann.
Von Ravenhoff was treated and brought with the group as they continued their trek towards the capitol of Timpala. One night he simply disappeared into the jungle with two of the Baluchis.
Carson and Sefu, both battered and cut very badly, were patched up and made it all the way to Timpala under their own steam….
Stay tuned for the next exciting episode in my Savage Worlds Pulp Adventure serial!
(which won't be for a few weeks as I'll be busy working on getting units painted for the Vimy Project for most of March....)