Concerned about the possibility fighting on two fronts Nate gathered available mobile forces at Scrapbridge, Cry, and Gastown. Agents from Gunmetal City reported that large numbers of Invincible were leaving Wyo and heading east, presumably this is the invading force that is now encircling Antolpe. Nate sent the foot elements to dig in and fortify for a defensive action against any potential northern Invincible attack.
Nate had the right idea by those actions should have been reversed. Foot troops dug in along the mouth of the valley could have held against attack while the mobile forces should have been arrayed on the open ground around Hope.
During a heavy rainstorm, the Invincible forces numbering over 300 vehicles descended the steep hills to the valley floor and split into three roughly equal forces. Invincible Group A moved to attack Scrapbridge from the south. Group B moved on Cry from the east. Group C occupied the ridges to north and east presumably to prevent our forces from escaping in that direction.
The weather and rough terrain prevented the Invincible forces from coordinating as effectively as was previously observed. 33 vehicles arrived at Cry ahead of the rest of their party. Cry had been evacuated and those forces combined with the group at Gastown to attack as the Invincible warriors were dismounted attempting to burn the food stores in Cry.
The Invincible force in Cry was broken and the majority of their vehicles captured. The remaining 66 vehicles in Invincible Group B showed up approximately 5 hours later out of position, 10 miles north of Cry. The combined allied force attacked from the south and the Invincible forces retreated in good order to join the siege of Scrapbridge.
The modest fortifications in place at Scrapbridge proved enough to turn away the initial Invincible attack. At the arrival of the allied forces to attack again from the south the Invincible main body retired back to the valley, setting up a strong defensive cordon in the area of what was once Defcon City.
Simultaneous to this action 200 Invincible vehicles came down Route 5 to attack 1100 unmounted fighters who had established a defensive picket on the road outside of Pigstye. This was an error on the part of their commander who should have circumvented the infantry to join the attack to the south.
While the Invincible circled the defensive position approximately 150 of our men with longarms slipped out of the camp and ascended to high ground on their eastern flank. Firing from the heights they drove the Invincible to break off their attack.
That infantry detachment advanced half a mile to a second ridge and drove the Invincible back again. A third advance to another ridgeline was made and the Invincible broke off the attack and retreated to the north.
This action had taken place only two days before our arrival in Paradise. Assuming command from Nate (action item – get his full report of time in command) I gathered the bulk of our forces in Gastown and sent scout vehicles to establish best communication possible with the infantry at Pigstye.
Gathering all the mechanics and surviving Engineers from Defcon I placed them under Lucien’s command as an engineering division. I explained that the concept of each gang/crew having their own independent machinist was over, all technical assets would be put to common tasks. Several objectors were killed in trial combat by my designated champion Five-Hands.
Lucien and I had decided that a third of this division would be dedicated to salvage, repair, rebuild, and maintenance, a third to modifying a portion of our vehicles with armor – reinforced sides, metal plates, sandbags, crash bars, etc – and a third to building improvised mortars.
Since each crew is essentially an independent tramp freighter (for lack of a better term) or at best several crew make up loose collection under a single leader, resistance to these changes is likely to remain high for the near future. If I had better command and control of this force I would ideally spend significant time upgrading and training before engaged the Invincible again in anything other than a defensive action but I believe the only way to get buy-in from these fighters is through success in aggressive action.