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RE: The little ship that could.

 
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RE: The little ship that could. - 8/14/2012 9:58:10 AM   
1275psi

 

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Fuchida continues his decent, seeking well known landmarks, seeking the field.
Even now, in the setting sun, they are not too hard to find

His back aches, his bum is numb, and his arms feel not the best too.
A long flight.
But fortunately one with out incident.

Truk lagoon lies peacefull beneath 47th as the fighters begin to break up formation, commence circuits to land
Of the carrier raids there appears to be liitle sign, the fields are in good repair, the out buildings all seem whole.
Of the three ss wrecks, nothing indicates their graves.

But Fuchida does note several things.............the complete abscence of shipping for one.
And, as he turns into final, the mountains of gear piled near the wharves.
So they guessed right.
47th is going to Truk to cover an evacuation of somebody.



He lands easily despite the cross wind, crabbing in, touching the rudder just at the right moment, rolling to an easy stop.

Ground crew swarm about, and little flags wave him quickly of the strip, down a rutted track, through palm trees, and then hard right into a cleverly camoflaged revrent.
His engine wheezes to its stop.

Straps off, canopy hard back, switches off, yes.
Log book...........tattered old thing.
A quick entry.
Reach for the canopy, pull, leg over.
Grab your gear, the sword. Bend, open the little hatch, pull out the small bag containing your entire worldy possessions, secure the hatch, and finally, clanking and clattering, the ground at last.

A sergeant salutes, crew chief............yes, there is fuel and spares to go here. The left manifold pressure? yes, he will look at it immediately.

Duties done..................now, lunch?




The mess is a large building. Almost palacial. Shining wooden floors, a long mahogony bar, shutters, palm frond blinds, high ceilings, and fans..........
A good place to call home.


Wo Nakamura is holding court.
About him, men are listening.
Not becuase Nakamura is an ace, nearly every pilot in 47th is that...........but because of what Nakamura has killed to become an ace.
Bombers.
Specifically, heavy bombers.

Fuchida joins the others, drink in hand.
Night has fallen, and a mess, long too quiet echoes to conversation again.


"The trick is simple, my friends." Nakamura uses two small model planes on sticks to demonstrate " climb 2 or 3 thousand above and ahead of the big barsteds.
Fly right above them, same heading.
Get a bit, say 500 feet ahead, invert, and dive, dive inverted. You can watch the target easy enough, no bloody great nose to get in the way............
let your self drift down to about 1000 feet, then, if you have it right, go vertical............and start shooting. The buka should drift straight through the stream.
You get about 3 seconds burst, you dive straight down and past..............."

"and this works?"
Fuchida smiles "Only if you are good enough my friend"

Fighting words indeed in a crowd like this

Nakamura places the models down "I call it the Nakamura knife............."


Fuchida knows instinctively.he can do this. This might work. What gunner can fire vertically at you?
Especially into the sun?
47th prescence must have been noticed, or would soon be,
The ships they must guard would be attacked...almost for certain.
By heavies.
The bukas.

Well, let's see how they would go with this so called knife

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1411
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/14/2012 10:00:00 AM   
1275psi

 

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And now for bad news

cantona is tramping about the Normandy battlefields for 12 days, pretending i think, that he is a Tiger commander.
Note.
tramping

No computer


I am going to die of with drawal symptoms

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1412
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/14/2012 7:13:34 PM   
kaleun

 

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So are we my friend.
OT. German howitzer at Meissy battery, near cantona.




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

Appear at places to which he must hasten; move swiftly where he does not expect you.
Sun Tzu

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Post #: 1413
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/14/2012 7:14:13 PM   
kaleun

 

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That image came out way too big, I'm afraid.

_____________________________

Appear at places to which he must hasten; move swiftly where he does not expect you.
Sun Tzu

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Post #: 1414
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/14/2012 9:40:47 PM   
british exil


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Well it is a big gun.

Mat


p.s sorry couldn't resist.

_____________________________

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WitE,UV,AT,ATG,FoF,FPCRS

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Post #: 1415
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/16/2012 3:19:12 PM   
british exil


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http://www.maisybattery.com/Home.html

To spend some of the time waiting for the allies to make their next move.

Is there anything similar from the pacific side?

Mat

_____________________________

"It is not enough to expect a man to pay for the best, you must also give him what he pays for." Alfred Dunhill

WitE,UV,AT,ATG,FoF,FPCRS

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Post #: 1416
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/17/2012 8:02:45 AM   
1275psi

 

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wow, nice sight

Phillipines doing nice job at bataan, worth a visit!

counting down the days......................

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Post #: 1417
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/26/2012 12:14:05 AM   
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27/10/43

Decisions.

Some you can spend days on, chewing them over, worrying at their edges, tearing at the taste of consequences, consequences that may, or may not occur.
Others you must make immediately, decisions forced upon you by actions of the enemy.

Yamaguchi must make his now.

The fleet sails slowly south , 160 miles due east of Siapan.
Its tanks are full, but the supporting tankers are empty............

CV Katsaguri, 3cvl and two battle wagons are at guam.
As are ten tankers, trying to unload at that piss poor excuse of a port.
A port surrounded by enemy ss...nearly a dozen sighted so far, ominous in itself.

The next fuel readily available....manilla, where the AO task force loads.

Or...........truk.

But truk is in heavy bomber range......

And finally...........those 270 enemy ships.............12 days since they have sailed.............somewhere.

Once again Yamaguchi curses his intelligence services.

He must make a decision.
Very well. He will

I will try to force a fight. I must.

The orders go out. The tankers will cease unloading, will move to Truk
Katsuguri, the BBs, will join him.
They, they will go to............Truk
The Army will send more fighters to Truk

And the Army will send troops to kavieng, and here we will fight.
He will refuel, and strike that growing cancer to the south. He, Yamaguchi, will no longer wait for the enemy. Darwin failed to sniff him out, lets try somewhere else then.





(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1418
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/26/2012 12:20:48 AM   
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Lt Fuchida side slips onto the strip, neatly touching down, dirt bellowing up from behind him.
Quickly, the route now known, his fighter is ushered into the palm groves, the waiting ground crews swarming about him.
Silence, the tinking of the motor cooling as he reves his sweat soaked helmut.

For a moment he saviours the silence, the stillness.
But not for too long. A bath awaits.
A bath!
Truk has much appeal yes?
No bombers today, a day of circling an empty lagoon.

Well not that empty. The support boats have been very busy tending the mooring bouys today..

The thought , of course, cannot be stopped.
How one could wish to see Zuiho, and father, at one of those bouys.

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Post #: 1419
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/26/2012 12:27:04 AM   
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Hoshos company marches 6 more miles today.

Another day of dust, of sore feet.
But no air attacks. Japanese fighters have been overhead again, gods know where from though.
20 miles to Shwebo, and then, after that, the river.

The enemy is following, hard. All day the artillery has rumbled behind them, and rumours flow thick and fast

Ten divisions are chasing them..........no, its fifteen.
No, we are luring 3 , the aussies, into a trap.............

Does it matter?
Burma Army is marching south. And to Hosho, this smells like retreat. Stinks of it.
The question is, how far are they going to go?

Someone is spreading the rumour, moulmien.

Gods, surely not. they can't do it. haven't they marched far enough now?

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Post #: 1420
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/27/2012 10:57:12 AM   
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28/10/43

For a moment, after you have been shaken awke, you lie still in your hammock, senses alive to the small world around you.
Several things are immediately evident, it seems.
First, the weather outside has gone to pot, the hammock was still 3 hours ago when you climbed in, now its swinging through a good arc, and sound of swells slapping against the hull mere inches away, loud and clear.

Damn.

Crash, Zuiho shoulders another one aside, and the rattling and banging is well under way.

Double damn. Its going to be a difficult watch.
You glance at your watch, peering hard in the dim red lighting, 0335 hours. So easy to just stay here.
So impossible to do however.........

With a groan, you swing your feet onto the cold deck, automatically securing your hammock for action, motions so practiced you are not even aware of doing them now.
But you do think carefully your passage to the small communal area, careful of every step, zuiho is rising, falling, pitching like the pig she is.
You ease down onto the bench, accruments of the day about you.
Others, always silent others join you, nobody ever has anything to say at this hour, weariness rules.
Socks, pants, shirt, boots, belt, first aid dressing, cap, torch .
Brew mug.
Essentials gathered.
You contemplate the ladder out, zuiho crashes again, lurches, falls.
Some stomachs (but not yours) will be twitching.

Tea.
This is next.

Up the ladder, into the corridor, a corridor rolling heavily.
You go forward to the baths, join others, do what needs to be done, splash water on your face.
No need to look at it. The dark circles will only be darker, the eyes even more blood shot.
Why look?
Aft now, swaying with the roll, judging the men coming the other way, all this automatic, the hand that steadies, the judging of the doors, the hatches.

The galley , an island of light in the red, and tea, and blessings, a sweet roll.
Waves thump still outside.
Damn. No smoke for now...............

The tea is good, the roll, better.
Conversation...............lousy as always.
0340
Time to go.
You go up again, the lower hanger stinks of gas. Stokers pass you, open a door, and you feel that wave of heat, the noise assualts you.
They laugh, and slam the hatch behind them.
No way would you contemplate going down there................

Hanger deck, alive with movement, the flight crews already at their work, the arc lights burning brightly
You adjust your dres, seat your Cap, and enter the bridge.


take a minute, and the utter darkness softens, greys, turns to shadows, men, wheel, binnacle, the windows, the sea, white caps, the full moon.
You silently slide to your position.
The Captain is on the bridge................is he ever not?

"Seaman Ashigari requests to take helm sir!"
'Approved"

The man you are relieving merely points -course 180, speed 126 revolutions.
The wheel, that familar object you curse so much, rests under your palm.

You steer 750 men through the night
"Seaman Ashigari has the wheel sir, course is 180, revolutions 126 sir!'
'very good. watch her closely seaman, its lumpy, and Yamato is on our port aft quarter"
'Hie!"

And now, as the clock slowly crawls on, you concentrate everything on just one object, that heading. 180.
Not 182, or 178, but 180.

Zuiho is a pig.

her bow rises, falls, crashes, bangs. Water at times hammers the screen, the wipers thump, thump, thump, endlessly.
Silence .
0430
And the horizon lightens.
A men brings the captain coffee, not tea, coffee and that hard barsted Hidaka joins him.
They confer, yes, CAP again, no, only 3 fighters today. No bombers.
And only the best .............

Dawn action stations.
You don your lifebelt, replace your cap with a tin one, and are relieved.............to lookout.

The bridge wing is cold, and wet, but so much better. here, at least, the air is fressh, and you can stretch.
And, of course, as the sun comes out, there will be the fleet.........

0600, and you rotate again, now you are Quartemasters mate, a glorified messanger.
It is the best job. You will, always, fid yourself below, seeking someone (gods, minobe, do you know how your cabin reeks), or, better yet, getting the endless cups of tea.

But all too soon, the last hour, and back onto the wheel.
The sky is bright, the sea angry.
'Bring her into the wind OOW!" barks the captain.
(yes, he terrifies you no?")
Hie!
'Port thirty!, revolutions 230!", new course 090degrees!'

You move automatically, your voice singing as you repeat the orders, dance your dance.

Zuiho, under your touch, slews to her orders, the spray flies, smoke stink, and she is coming around.
"passing through 120 degrees sir!'
'very good, starboard ten!"
"Starboard ten sir!

Admidships!
and you settler her in, and now she is really piggish, rolling awkwardly..........
'Ready to launch sir"

"Launch fighters"




1000 hours.
You have eaten. Scrubbed the mess. Now you are forward, wind biting, passing ammuntion, drilling, drilling, and rilling some more.

1200 hours, the rope is biting, hard and wet and burning in your hand, as the jackstay goes across to the destroyer alongside.
The weather has worsened, and this job is a right barsted.

1300, and you are at the gun for real now, tin hat hard on your skull, and a hundred pairs of eyes scan the angry grey. There is a sub out there.............

1600.
'Bring her into the wind OOW!'
And you spin the wheel again


The day will pass. You will rest, for a while, just after midnight.
How many days now?. How many more?
They are merging together now. As they do. For this is life. Routine, crushing routine.
And in a way, I suppose, you must find this good.

For out here, in war, only one thing can ruin routine

Total terror.


(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1421
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/27/2012 11:07:12 AM   
1275psi

 

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Hosho cleans his gun.
Counts his ammunition

A little left.
Not much, 20 rounds, if that.

The bullets spill. Shaking hands, blood steaked hands, struggle to gather the precious brass shapes from the grass.

Bando watches him, eyes almost sightless, focussed on somewhere else, anywhere else.

"How many did we lose?"
No answer.
"Angry now, Hosho shakes his friend.
The eyes focus....come back to this hell.
"How many did we lose?'

"I, I, am not sure sir. 20, maybe 25. But we held, didn't we?"
(yes. yes we bloody well did. Let them try that again..................)

"They won't try again ney?' Cheer up bando, Shweb tomorrow"
( please, please, I hope they don't, we are alll but finished, I think)



(The british, 6, or was it 7 divisions strong, have attacked.
3870 japanese casualties, 21 squads, a hundred guns obliterated.

7500 allied casualties, 139 squads )


But Hosho is right. Japanese Northern Burma army is shattered.

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1422
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/27/2012 11:10:18 AM   
1275psi

 

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hey kaluen

Is that you in front of the gun?

You have a twin brother in Aussie..............I just know that face...................

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Post #: 1423
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/28/2012 10:20:06 AM   
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29 /10 /43

The Pacific remans exactly opposite to its name, grey, rough, flecked with white

Squalls, strong winds, low scudding clouds, poor visibility.

But its not poor enough. Just after dawn, they sight the buka, low on the horizon.
It is gone well before any fighter can get to it.

It does not take long. A dozen radio rooms will soon intercept the message.

"Send main body. Many carriers"
The fleet has been discovered.

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1424
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/28/2012 10:31:35 AM   
1275psi

 

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30/10/43

The message is sent by flashing light.
Grimly it is sent
By many, grimly recieved.

But not by Takeji. His heart leaps with joy.
maybe, maybe, this time


'from Flag
to
Shoho, Zuiho, destroyers..............

Detach. Form on Hiyo. Strike enemy shipping kavieng area"

Dusk is falling as our little ship peels away, white water flashing down her flanks.

The main body fades away, no longer heading south.
Yamaguchi has changed plans. Again.
The main fleet heads towards Timor, and more importantly, fuel

Zuiho plunges south

Into the night, and the great unknown


















< Message edited by 1275psi -- 8/28/2012 10:32:28 AM >

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Post #: 1425
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/28/2012 2:59:42 PM   
kaleun

 

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quote:

Is that you in front of the gun?


Yes. I guess they ran out of faces and had to recycle some.

_____________________________

Appear at places to which he must hasten; move swiftly where he does not expect you.
Sun Tzu

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1426
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/28/2012 10:25:52 PM   
british exil


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Maybe the battle is making our heroes seeing things that are not really there.
quote:

ORIGINAL: 1275psi

hey kaluen

Is that you in front of the gun?

You have a twin brother in Aussie..............I just know that face...................



_____________________________

"It is not enough to expect a man to pay for the best, you must also give him what he pays for." Alfred Dunhill

WitE,UV,AT,ATG,FoF,FPCRS

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1427
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/29/2012 9:58:49 AM   
1275psi

 

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November 1

We talked of routines this week.

There are a great many, of course, onboard a ship

Just of the top of my head, every day for the Stokers........
Soot blows during the middles
Water tests during the morning watch, and the dogs watch
Fuel transfers and tests during the morning, and first watch

The charge will visit all spaces during the morning, and the firsts
There is the morning briefing for the MEO -which is passed to the CO
There is the DOg watch evening brief

And rounds are carried out hourly through out the engineering spaces.

All important
The most vital one, this last to be mentioned, is the daily liquid state. (but done twice daily!)
How much fuel, how much water, oil remaining?

Today, zuiho passes less than 30%

This will please the charge, the best way to get rid of the crud they last recieved, is to burn it.
It dismays Takeji.
3 days, at best, then Truk is the only place they can go.
But then again, they might be dead by then yes?



Anticipation fills today.

CV Hiyo, Shoho, Zuiho.
Battleships fuso, Yamashiro, Kirishima, Hiei, cruisers Tone, chikuma, and a great gaggle of destroyers greet todays dawn some 120 miles south west of Truk, and steam all day almost due south.

Nothing disturbs them.
They are well in range of the enemy heavies, for they strike Truk to the north, but nothing disturbs them.
But one will spend the entire day expecting the attack, an exercise almost as exhausting as recieving one.
Anticipation of bad things is a poor way to pass the day...........

At midday, news
DD Tamanami has swept into Feni island, south of Kavieng, encountered 3 dds, swapped shells with out injury, then, while high tailing out, falied to engage 6 large AKs.

2 other destroyers also have raced in, and out, spotting nothing.

The enemy has, it seems, ordered all shipping to clear the area.

The sun sets, and Hiyo continues to lead them south.
Zuiho prepares for action, again, as best she can.

At midnight, Tone, Chikuma, 4 dd's peel away
Orders
Attack, bombard, stir the nest.

Nothing ventured............nothing gained


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Post #: 1428
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/29/2012 10:08:24 AM   
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Hidaka briefs his pilots

He need say little, for what can he teach these men?

"The bombers will all be reserved for strike. We will maintain 6 fighter CAP.
The rest will be bomber escort."

There are nods of agreement.
Only one thing scares Zuiho, other carriers. The heavies might attack, but can they actually hit anything?. No.
Attack. That is their mantra. It is time to attack.

"naval search sir?"
"Its sufficient"

Silence greets him. (yes, we are tired, but we are eager to go. Please, let us plant some fish into fat bellies soon!)
"early start tomorrow , again. Get your rest.
I will lead the first CAP"

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1429
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/29/2012 10:15:26 AM   
1275psi

 

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Truk.
Fuchida climbs nimbly from his cockpit, crouches under the left wing

Yes, there it is, a foot from the tip.
A single fist sized hole - gift from the liberator bomber he has just attacked.
Attacked, and failed to hit..........

His crew chief awaits him
"Did they hit anything?"
"The bombers sir?"
"No, the bloody seagulls you fool, did they hit anything?" there is no malice in this, just a weary humour

The crew chief grins. "They killed a few fish, thats all"
'Good"


The bombers had come in low..........very low.
They had been high, very high.
Too bloody high.
In, out, and only three fighters intercepting.

And one of them, he Fuchida, had been a bloody awful shot.
Never mind. Tomorrow would probably provide another chance.

Actually, almost certainly,............

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1430
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/29/2012 10:17:26 AM   
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Burma's Northern army retreats south through Shwebo.
Efforts are made to entrain some troops.
They will fail

Enemy armour too, enters Shwebo

The hounds smell blood now, and move in for the kill..............

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1431
RE: The little ship that could. - 8/30/2012 9:20:27 AM   
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2/11/43

Death from a distance.

Takeji takes each flimsy from the radio room, reads them, folds them quietly into his pocket.

They begin well, two destroyers, Maikaze, Hatashio, have closed almost to the surf line at Namatani, the new allied airfield on the island of kavieng, and wrecked chaos on the field.

A good beginning. There own southward passage may yet go unchalleneged.

But dawn brings more flimsies, more messages.

Death from a distance

"CA Chikuma.....am under heavy air attack, north Cape glouster"
CA Chikuma......escorting destroyers Akigumo, Takanami sunk........."
CA Chikuma.......have been heavily bombed.........attacks continuing...........'

And then....the silence.


Something had gone wrong.............how in the hell do you allow yourself to be THAT close to the enemy LBA?
A good man, Captain Kaezi......a good man.
Wasted.

Grimly Takeji jams the papers into his pocket.

Other reports tell of large convoys near Lea, mandang.
And still near Namatanai......

Task force Hiyo continues south, speed 15 knots.
Zuihos fuel falls to 22 percent.........


(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1432
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/1/2012 2:00:36 AM   
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3/11/43

320 miles north east kavieng.

Hiyo continues to lead her task force , the flight decks arrayed ready to strike, the CAP circling overhead.

Around them , the Battleships.

Fate, it seems, is detirmined however, to wash all of Zuihos dreams and wishes away.
It is (inevitably it seems to me now days) pissing rain again.

The Cap may be flying, invisible above the layer of cloud that sits mearely 2000 feet above, flying in crystal clear sky at 5000 feet, but down here, the grey rules again.

Takeji, again, grounds his teeth in frustration.
"We are cursed Hidaka, cursed"
Hidaka nods agreement.
(Attack, attack, yes, that is good my captain. But do you see the bigger picture?. Every hour of this muck brings the battle wagons closer. Every hour the enemy remains fixed on us...........and not KB.
We may not win glory today, but we are playing our part..)
" It may clear soon sir"
"And it may not.....yes?. Our fuel is but finished........damn this weather..........."


Yes, men damn this weather on Zuiho, but south, at Namatanai, at Madang, a great many japanese sailors are blessed by it.
For here, the great roar of gunfire is shattering the dawn.............

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1433
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/1/2012 4:18:24 AM   
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Cl Tenryu

Possibly the oldest and frailest cruiser still operating in this war greets this dawn at 21 knots, 60 miles northeast of Madang.
21 knots, an incredible effort considering the crater that now has replaced what once was her forward boiler room.

Yesterdays 1000 lb bomb, delivered with aplomb by the dauntless dive bomber operating from Lae, has turned that space into a still burning charnel house.
Massive clouds of smoke still pour from her guts, the flames still defying the many hoses spraying down from her topsides.
She has been hit, and hit hard.

But her guns still remain.
Now she comes over the horizon, a column of smoke visible for many, many miles.

At madang, 15 APA's, 3 LST, a tanker have just anchored, escorted by 4 small DE's.
They spot this smoke at 20 miles, spot it, and interpret it as the only thing it can possibly be.

A large surface force approaches!

The enemy flee.

Tenryu will attack, her ancient guns reaching as far as they can, chasing the retreating shapes on the horizon, dodging the fire returning.
2 enemy ships will collide, another will be hit.
tenryu will escape.
The rain takeji curses begins to fall here too, a blessing indeed.
Rain puts her fires out.



Tone does better
Her sister is gone
She will be avenged.

Tone, destroyers Akizuki, Tenuzuki sweep into Namatanai just before dawn, erupting from the next squall upon the enemy at a mere 11000 yards.
Two destroyers, 3 large fat APA's
The enemy destroyers wheel towards them, charging down their throat.
The range closes brutally fast, and in this madness, if a gun can shoot, it will.
They will race past each other, these two lines of ships, at a mere 2000 yards, one line heading soth, the other North, and too the bottom............
Tone overwhelms them both in 3 sickening minutes.

There is no mercy shown for the transporst, for the men who man them, or more importantly those that they carry.
25 mm AA guns dance their tracer over the decks, a fireworks display , red, green , blue.
Death chases through the decks, leaving fire, blood, carnage

And then here too, the rain begins to fall, covering the sounds of the sinkings.

Tone, too, escapes, covered by the rain Takeji curses

Her sister is avenged.

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1434
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/1/2012 4:28:03 AM   
1275psi

 

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It is still raining, raining hard, as dusk falls
Her aircraft recovered, Zuiho flows Hiyo doggedly on, her undersides now visible with every roll over every swell.

Her tanks are all but dry now, and Charge, the Chippee, even Minobe, have battled all day with transfers to the ready use tanks from the last dregs in the mains.
Plans are already made for using portable pumps, buckets even, to recover what cannot be normally sucked from them.
But they will not ballast. ballasting means tank cleans.
Tank cleans mean down time

And war allows little of that..................

It is a familiar tactic now.
Dusk falls

And more ships peel way

Yamaguchi, Fuso, Kirishima, 6 destoyers
Again, it rains.

No aircraft will fly

But new enemies await at Namatanai airfield.

Hidaka watches them go.
His eagles are grounded. But how much fire power do those elderly battlewagons carry?
More than he can deliver.
Especially in this crud
Maybe, just maybe, the day of the battleship is not quite done?


(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1435
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/1/2012 2:06:27 PM   
kaleun

 

Posts: 4645
Joined: 5/29/2002
From: Colorado
Status: online
Awesome storytelling.

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Appear at places to which he must hasten; move swiftly where he does not expect you.
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(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1436
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/2/2012 4:52:33 AM   
1275psi

 

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Able seaman Ashigara climbs the short ladder, squeezes his way through the tight hatch.
With practiced movements he moves left, taking his position at the great levers
"Ashigara in position Gun captain!" he yells, his voice almost lost in the hum of the machinery about him.
Other voices, a great many call out about him, rapidly, discipline palable about him

The gun captain, his legs daggling down just above him, bends to his micrphone.
"B turret ready"
His foot touches Ashigara on the shoulder. "We are first again. A good job"
They do not win by much. B turret, battleship Yamashiro, is ready for action a mere moments before the rest.

For a few minutes, before it begins, there is a little time to think.
To think of those massive walls seperating you from the world, of that little hatch.
But that hatch may as well never exist.
This is a Japanese battleship, going into battle.
Win, or lose, nobody from B turrett will be leaving their post.


The sounds about them suddenly increase, the great structure, a thousand tons of it, is swinging to the right..................and on que, the first of the great 14 inch shells rises up towards him.

It begins now.
He, Ashigara, is now no more than a lever pulling machine.

His voice begins to sing, the lever is pulled, the great shell rolls onto the tray
Another lever, ramming the shell home.........
Another, and already the sweat begins to rise

The powder bags come up, are rammed in
The breech closes
The gun rises, falls..........

A faint crump.
The breech is opened.........
And the stink of battle begins..........


(in reply to kaleun)
Post #: 1437
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/2/2012 7:48:22 AM   
John 3rd


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Joined: 9/8/2005
From: La Salle, Colorado
Status: offline
Hmmmmmmm...go get them!

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(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1438
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/3/2012 9:59:28 AM   
1275psi

 

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Joined: 4/17/2005
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0100 hours

Hirate is not surprised, not surprised at all when the fuel pump beside him begins to throw its fit.
From its steady thump, wheeeze, thump, wheeze, it bursts into a rapid thump, thump, thump, clatter........
Calmly, he reaches across, screws its throttle shut

"Pull em boys", he gestures to his burnermen, we are done
"Starboard Engine, Starboard boiler.....lost suction on the tank, pulling fires, securing boiler."
"Hie"
The engine room, too, does not sound surprised either.
They, everyone of them, have been expecting this moment any time now.

The starboard ready use tank is dry, and the Port has but 6 hours, at best, left.



Takeji recieves the message from the engine room with out visible reaction
After all, what else can he do?
Screaming will not help.
So sorry, we have screwed up, and are out of fuel..so sorry..........

'Calmly, he speaks
"Inform flagship. "Speed reduced to 12 knots. 8 hours fuel, at best remaining"

He glances at the battlewagon, 1000 yards on his flank. Apparently, she has only 6 hours left.
So sorry...........

"Message from Hiyo sir. "Acknowledged. You will take 500 tons from Yamashiro at dawn."

Yamashiro?. 500 tons?
Fat chance if she gets sunk tonight...........

(in reply to John 3rd)
Post #: 1439
RE: The little ship that could. - 9/3/2012 10:09:25 AM   
1275psi

 

Posts: 6437
Joined: 4/17/2005
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0200
Zuiho's starbaord bridge wing

As good a place as any to exercise command

Three men, Takeji, Minobe, the Charge.
The Captain asks again, directing his question directly at Minobe.
"And you beleive there is at least 500 tons swilling about that we cannot suck"
Minobe thinks.
He must be very careful here The wrong answer, and who knows what mad scheme might be given birth?

"At least sir"
'Then why don;t you stick a hose down into the tank, or something, and pump it?"
Minobe glances at the Charge.
Even here, in the muted red light, the desperation is clear in his eyes.
memories, visiosn, sweep through his mind

Visions of dead men, gassed.
Of dark tanks, unventilated, fumed filled
Not again.
"Sir". the charge speaks " it would fill your ship with fumes. turn her into a bomb. a single spark............and I don't have a suitable pump, not a portable one"

Takeji pauses.
The insurmountable problem...........

'we may get 500 tons tomorrow, damn, this morning. We may not. Regardless, tankers are two days away. I need a solution
I repeat. I need a solution............."

The two men stiffen
Salute
They need a solution. And they need Yamashiro's fuel
But a solution might be better.........

(in reply to 1275psi)
Post #: 1440
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