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LPBS Masthead: Roland as a Musketeer

Les Petites Bêtes Soyeuses

Being a correspondence game of En Garde! run by Pevans since April 1986 and now published as part of To Win Just Once.

If you'd like to play, you'll need to subscribe to TWJO (follow the link for details). You will need a copy of the rules to En Garde! - or at least access to a copy. The additional rules for LPBS are available as a PDF document. (You will need Adobe Reader to view this: it is available free from Adobe.)

Orders for December 1672 to LPBS, 180 Aylsham Drive, UXBRIDGE UB10 8UF or the LPBS orders e-mail address by Friday, 12th February 2021.

Game Report for November 1672

Sections: Duels, Trials, Appointments and Regiments, What happened in Paris, What happened at the front.

Is it the weather? Is it the days getting shorter? Something stops Parisians settling their affairs of honour this month. Some are just postponed, but Neville Moore of the Royal Foot Guards just doesn't turn up to resolve things with Rick Shaw of Archduke Leopold's Cuirassiers. Or Bastian de LaGarde. However, that's a bit more understandable, given the two of them are in the same regiment. Oh, the shame! Cam Embert and Mustafa Lekk have a meeting, too, but neither of them shows up.

However, the rivalry between the Dragoon Guards and Queen's Own Carabiniers continues when QOC Captain Pierre de Terre faces DG Major Phillipe F'Loppe. F'Loppe's old injuries cancel the size advantage he would have had, but he is still more skilled with the sabre both men are using. Ben e'Volence seconds F'Loppe and has brought some strong liquor to fortify his principal. Terre starts with a lunge (the beginning of a furious lunge) that goes straight through F'Loppe's guard. The tip of the sabre does little damage, but F'Loppe surrenders anyway.

A less well-known regimental rivalry is between the Crown Prince Cuirassiers and the 53rd Fusiliers. However, Les Anonyme (commander of the 53rd Fusiliers) and Ben e'Volence (CPC Lieutenant-Colonel) have a point to settle. Anonyme is the bigger man and his advantage is increased by e'Volence's partly healed wounds. However, he has less expertise with his rapier than e'Volence does with his sabre. Both of his seconds (Hercule D'Engin and Thierry d'Actyl) turn up, too. E'Volence just has Phillipe F'Loppe, as Chris Knight has better things to do. Anonyme's initial lunge is parried by e'Volence, who then pivots to plant his boot in his opponent. But Anonyme jumps out of the way and watches as e'Volence regains his balance. E'Volence attacks with his sword this time, his slash blocked by the waiting Anonyme. A second lunge from the Fusilier strikes home and e'Volence concedes the fight.

Uther Xavier-Beauregard has issued several challenges, but Paris only sees fit to grant him cause (just) in one of these: versus Balzac Slapdash. ("Too big for his boots!" snorts Leonard de Hofstadt as he votes against.) Slapdash is the more skilled of the two protagonists, but is using a rapier to Xavier-Beauregard's sabre. Terence Cuckpowder seconds Xavier-Beauregard. Slapdash's initial lunge goes straight through Xavier-Beauregard's block and the challenger surrenders straight away. Not much of a fight, but then he does have to visit the Louvre to be keep the King's footstool.

Soldiers march reluctantly to the beat of a big drum labelled "France"Off to Holland!

Greg de Bécqueur has asked the Adjutant of First Division to give up his post. He backs his request by calling in a favour that should make sure the man departs. Jean Jeanie and Beau Reese Jean Seine then chip in with their own influence and the Adjutant is out of the door in no time. Division commander Jeanie appoints Bécqueur to the position.

Colonel Seine's influence is at work elsewhere this month as well. First he removes the senior Captain in his regiment, the Royal Foot Guards. Then he gets rid of the junior Major as well. Suddenly the RFG has some enticing vacancies.

However, it's to the Dragon Guards that Charles Trenet applies. DG commander Henri Dubois doesn't even seem to notice, rejecting the application out of hand. Trenet offers his services to the Princess Louisa Light Dragoons instead and finds acceptance this time. He fills the vacancy for the regiment's junior Major, spending his recent borrowings on the horses he needs for his new rank.

Lars Kristmass finally joins a regiment, signing up for the 4th Arquebusiers where he takes the rank of Captain.

Camille de Polignac accepts the offer to be Aide to Lieutenant-General Bernard de Lur-Saluces. He can't have the job, though, as the Lt-Gen already has an Aide. Lur-Saluces then offers his services to the Royal North Highlanders for the month. Is it the embarrassment?

KM Major Tarquin le Hatter has decided he would like to be Aide to a General. His ambition is supported by Bastian de LaGarde, but he doesn't pull quite enough strings for Hatter to get an appointment. And Hatter's other aspiration, Brigade Major of the Guards, is already filled.

With the Inspector-General of Cavalry (Bernard de Lur-Saluces) on his way to serve with the RNHB, it would hardly be logical for him to veto other volunteers. Thus Jean David Goliath is able to order his squadron of Princess Louisa's Light Dragoons into the fray. Guards Brigadier Jean d'Ice feels the need for active service as well, but decides only "his" regiment, the Cardinal's Guard, need come with him. Lt-Colonel Thierry d'Actyl had other plans for the month, but now shelves them. Members of the RFG and KM breath a sigh of relief.

Major Sven Thibault Comseine expects the Picardy Musketeers to be in action and has his kitbag packed and ready. The same is true of Lt-Colonel Louis Renault, Captain Cyrano de Lancet and Subaltern Lascar Vivrebras. They are not disappointed when the regiment's commander, Zavier Ulric Turenne, gives the word and the Picardies set off for the United Provinces. Their colleague, Captain Count Le Fishé (he's not a Count), is less on the ball, but is still going into action.

A hatless Musketeer shakes his fist and glove in teh face of anotherJust one contre-temps

The planned social events are scheduled for the second half of the month, but that doesn't stop Parisians flocking to their clubs - and sometimes hosting a guest or two - in the first two weeks. Thus the Fleur de Lys sees Leonard de Hofstadt start the month with Frances Forrin on his arm and Ben e'Volence, with Fifi, and Pierre de Terre, in his new Major's uniform, Toadying to him. The other members in the club that week start with new member Les Anonyme, escorting Carole Singeurs. This causes an argument since, as already established, Anonyme and e'Volence are in opposing regiments. The other members skirt this fracas as they come in. Jean Jeanie brings Jacky Tinne. Pierre Cardigan accompanies Edna Bucquette. And Terence Cuckpowder drags Katy Did along.

Greg de Bécqueur holds court at Bothwell's with Kathy Pacific as hostess. They are joined by Gaz Moutarde, escorting Anne Tique, Tarquin le Hatter, who brings Leia Orgasma, and Xavier Money, with Betty Kant on his arm. Robert d'Lancier is badgering the doormen: he can't remember the name of the man he wants to Toady to. "Garde de Bastian-La?" "Gerard de Belle-Lucien?" "It's something like that..." Robert does not persuade them to let him in.

Hunter's has Camille de Polignac, plus Angelina di Griz, and new member Justin Thyme (now Lt-Colonel of the QOC), with Lucy Fur, occupying separate tables. Only Cam Embert makes it to Blue Gables. The Frog & Peach is busier, with Mustafa Lekk bringing Mary Huana and Petit-Garson Riche Emma Roides. And the last club, Red Phillips, attracts new Lt-Colonel Claude de Nord with Ada Andabettoir. Shame Claude didn't have the standing to be Colonel yet.

The bawdyhouses provide boozing for those without a club. And female company for anyone. This week sees Bastian de LaGarde, Chris Knight, Henri Dubois and Hercule D'Engin partaking of both. Some brave footpads decide to take on the Commissioner of Public Safety. Bastian is clearly the worse for wear and succumbs to a sharp blow with a cudgel. The footpads are pleased to find a few crowns left in his purse.

A woman pointedly ignores the kisses being blown at her by a MusketeerOther Parisians seek female company by courting. Their efforts bring no reward for Duncan d'Eauneurts, Lars Kristmass, Neville Moore or Rick Shaw. However, Charles Trenet's courting of Ella Fant is successful, winning her affections away from Duncan - maybe she knows what her lover is up to. A duel will be required, of course. Beau Reese Jean Seine avoids all this by simply visiting his current lady at her place. Though first he invests a few thousand crowns in Arms.

This leaves the gyms - regimental and independent - which see half a dozen swinging their preferred blades around. Augustin Fourier practises with his sabre. Balzac Slapdash prefers rapier. Henri DuShite goes for a heavier option: cutlass. Mind you, that's all they have in the Royal Marines' gym. Jacques de Gain continues his rapier practice. It's sabre for Marc de Zorro (despite the twinges from his injuries) and Phillipe F'Loppe in their separate regimental gyms.

The second week of November looks much the same. Bastian de LaGarde arrives at the Fleur, where Les, Leonard and Pierre are back with their mistresses. Ben and Fifi are Leonard's guests again and are joined by Phillipe F'Loppe, a man with cash in his purse after taking out some fresh loans. He's also made a point of arriving first to organise things - something he feels a good Aide should do.

Greg and Kathy are back in Bothwell's and greet the same guests as last week. This week they have competition as Marc de Zorro is also hosting in his new club. Supported by Deb Estaround, Marc greets Justin Thyme, who brings Lucy, Pierre de Terre and Petit-Garson Riche. Then he shows off by placing a couple of 400-crown wagers on the gaming tables. He loses both bets, leaving him looking rather shamefaced. And substantially out of pocket. Justin throws himself into the party spirit, downing two bottles of champagne "partying with the regiment". Robert still can't quite remember that name...

Hunter's sees Camille and Angelina visit again. This week, Charles Trenet and Ella Fant are also in the club after Charles's success the week before. Balzac Slapdash takes Alison Wunderlandt to Blue Gables and find they're the only people there. The Frog & Peach has Mustafa and Mary for a second time.

The bawdyhouses are empty this week, but the gyms are more popular. Augustin, Henri and Jacques continue their work-outs. Beau Reese Jean Seine picks up his rapier. Despite being an infantryman, Claude de Nord prefers the cavalry sabre. Cam Embert sticks to his rapier and Chris Knight to his sabre. It's sabre for Henri Dubois. Rapier for Hercule D'Engin. Jean Jeanie forks out to practise rapier and Terence Cuckpowder pays to improve his sabre skill.

There's not much luck for those going courting this week. Duncan, Neville and Rick get nowhere again. However, there is a success as Lars Kristmass wins the heart of his lady at the second attempt.

Bondage at the Fleur

Week 3 sees the beginning of CPS Bastian de LaGarde's "Fête de Justice" at the Fleur de Lys. His display of "crime and punishment" holds little attraction, it seems - even though it includes "the heads of the most recently chastised and girls in bondage". He is joined by just Greg de Bécqueur, escorting Kathy, and Jean Jeanie, with Jacky. Leonard and Frances have just one guest this week: Pierre de Terre is back. The other members in attendance are Les and Carole and Pierre and Edna. Arriving for the first time this month is Uther Xavier-Beauregard, fresh from his arduous duties attending on His Majesty at the Louvre. He brings Henrietta Carrotte with him so that she can hear what was going on at court.

A dark cloud hovers over a woman with hands on hipsBy contrast, Bothwell's is pretty empty. Ben e'Volence brings Fifi for a drink while Xavier Money is there with Betty Kant. Camille and Angelina are in Hunter's again, as are Justin and Lucy. Tarquin le Hatter brings Leia to his club for the first time this month and they are joined by Toadies Claude de Nord and Ada. It's the turn of Hercule D'Engin to be the man in Blue Gables. Mustafa and Mary continue in the Frog & Peach, which also sees the arrival of Petit-Garson Riche and Emma. Lars Kristmass hits Red Phillips (yes, he's joined a club as well as a regiment) to show off his conquest of last week: Josephine Buonoparte.

Cam Embert chooses this week to get a drink at a bawdyhouse. Just a drink, mind. Elsewhere, Duncan's attempted courting fails again. Eventually he'll notice that his intended is not at home. Won't he? The object of Rick Shaw's efforts is at home, she's just not that into him. Neville Moore has had the same problem, but this week the issue is that he's run out of readies. No pressy, no courting! There is success for both Marc de Zorro and Robert d'Lancier. Both will have duels as a result, though. And Gaz Moutarde settles for a quiet week at home with his mistress.

In their respective gyms for another week are Augustin, Beau, Balzac, Chris, both Henris, Jacques. Phillipe and Terence. Charles Trenet takes up his regimental sabre for the first time this month.

Only Greg (and Kathy) turns up for the second week of Bastian's do. Leonard and Frances have just one guest, too: Phillipe F'Loppe, who is profuse in his thanks to Leonard for this "kind invitation". Les, Pierre and Uther are in the Fleur again with their mistresses. Ben and Fifi and Xavier and Betty return to Bothwell's where Robert d'Lancier also appears - to check out his new club. He has Katy Did - last seen with Viscount Cuckpowder - on his arm and heads for the gaming tables. Betting 500 crowns a time, he's looking at a big loss after his first two wagers go against him. The third is a win, though, giving him some (expensive) kudos.

It's Camille and Angelina's fourth week in Hunter's, Justin and Lucy's third and Tarquin and Leia's second. However, it's their first visit this month for Augustin and Pet. Hercule continues in Blue Gables, as do Mustafa and Mary in the Frog & Peach. This last club is the venue for Petit-Garson Riche's "Young Gentlemen of Paris" get-together. Emma Roides is on his arm to greet Claude de Nord and Lars Kristmass, both accompanied by their ladies, Ada and Josephine, respectively.

Visiting a bawdyhouse is a conventional way of wrapping up the month. This month it's a routine followed by Neville Moore, Pierre de Terre and Rick Shaw, though Neville is only there for a drink. Duncan d'Eauneurts continues his pointless courting endeavours, while Gaz Moutarde and Marc de Zorro visit their ladies.

Finally, the practising continues in the gyms. One more week for Beau (rapier), Balzac (rapier), Cam (rapier), Chris (sabre), Charles (sabre), Henri D (sabre), Henri DS (cutlass), Jacques (rapier), Jean (rapier) and Terence (sabre).

Take that, you Dutchman!

In the United Provinces, French forces continue to lay siege to strongholds and fight off attempts to relive them from the Dutch and their allies. Guards Brigade HQ is present, but only has the Cardinal's Guard under their command. Lieutenant-Colonel Thierry d'Actyl is acting commander of the regiment. He throws himself into the fray. Literally. Sadly, his bravery brings him only the business end of a Dutch pike. RIP. The nominal CG commander, brevet Brigadier-General Jean d'Ice, is Guards Brigadier, and thus away from the cut and thrust of the action. He takes over 500 crowns from the month's loot nevertheless. CG Major Jerome Fortmayne gets to serve with the Brigade this month - he may be disgraced, but he's still Brigade Major - and is promoted to Lt-Colonel in the wake of Ice's [oops!] Actyl's death. He takes a slightly larger amount of booty, which is useful as he's already repaid his loans this month.

Reckless Bravery: a Musketeer whistles nonchalantly with his fist in the muzzle of a cannon

Presented with enemy fortifications, the Picardy Musketeers know what to do: charge! They successfully storm the ramparts, but not without loss. The regiment's victory brings a Mention in Despatches for its commander, Zavier Ulric Turenne ("That's the way to do it!"). Lt-Col Louis Renault takes the regimental colours from a wounded subaltern and carries them to the top of the battlements. He provides a rallying point for the men coming up behind him and is rewarded with two Mentions ("That's a brave man. And a rich one!"). Once the fort has been cleared, he plunders over a thousand crowns worth from the enemy stores. Following his example, Major Sven Thibault Comseine rushes up a ladder a little further along the wall. However, he takes a musketball in the chest as he reaches the top and is flung back to the ground. RIP. There are mixed fortunes for Captains Cyrano de Lancet and Count Le Fishé. The former survives, the latter doesn't. RIP. And Subaltern Lascar Vivrebras is Mentioned in Despatches as he supports Lt-Col Renault.

Major Jean David Goliath's squadron of Princess Louisa's Light Dragoons is attached to Frontier regiment 1. But there's still not much the cavalry can do in a siege and there's no reward for him. He does receive a gift from Paris, though. The same result befalls Grand Duke Max Dragoons Major Jacques Hatt, attached to Frontier regiment 2. Including the gift from Paris. The Royal North Highland Border regiment always finds some action, though, and Lt-General Bernard de Lur-Saluces is in the thick of it, commanding a battalion. He keeps himself safe and his prize is some 1,500 crowns worth of loot.