Posted 05 October 2016 - 22:03
Posted 06 October 2016 - 01:21
point 7. what is proper tag for starting squadron? I'm using $[startSquad] below.
Fictionalised Franz Stigler bio. Of course, please correct where I get ahead of my English.
Edited by Trupobaw, 06 October 2016 - 11:57.
I need a new signature now. Thank you for RoF skinpack vol.19!
Posted 06 October 2016 - 08:52
Does $[startSquad] in German careers refer to Geschweder or Gruppe level?
Fictionalised Hans Ulrich Rudel bio
Coming from nation obsessive with physical fitness, $[name] still stood out as a dedicated sportsman. As schoolboy he was considered a slow but persistent learner; this persistence was no doubt honed over long hours of running, jumping and skiing rather than doing his homework. His interest in aviation was „just” typical – typical for generation of kids raised on war stories of Richtofen and other Great War heroes. After he finished his Gymnasium with no money for his dream of civilian aviation school, young $[firstName] planned to become physical education teacher and maybe seek fame as decathlonist. Then Luftwaffe started recruiting volunteers for pilot training and, to his surprise, $[firstName] passed the rigorous entrance exams.
His first combat assignment started a trend that would dominate, and almost destroy, his career. Ever slow to learn new techniques and familiarise with new planes, he was seen as bad pilot by his superiors. Other pilots saw him as odd killjoy, refusing to drink and smoke and preferring running and football to socialising in the mess. When war broke out in 1939, $[firstName] was denied combat flying; he was always first to be posted away when his Kommodore had to give up a pilot, only to persistently apply for transfer to another combat unit. He spent invasion of Poland behind a desk, invasion of France grounded, Battle of Britain and invasion of Jugoslavia in training reserve unit, and invasion of Greece hauling damaged planes to repair park then bringing them back. He practiced gunnery, bombing and formation flying as rigorously as he pursued the sports, but by the time he became a competent pilot his reputation preceded him and his Kommodores tried to get rid of him as soon as he arrived.
His luck finally turned on $[startDate], when he transferred to $[startSquad]. His reputation preceded him again but rather than get rid of bad pilot, his new Kommodore posted $[firstName] to Gruppe whose Kommandeur he disliked as calculated insult. The dislike was mutual and Kommandeur gave $[firstName] a fair chance to prove himself, in spite of his superiors prejudice. After 2 years of dead-end posts, at age of $[age], $[startRank] $[name] took off for his first combat sortie. It was a new beginning he worked long and hard on, and he knew his persistence will see him through.
Edited by Trupobaw, 06 October 2016 - 10:11.
I need a new signature now. Thank you for RoF skinpack vol.19!
Posted 06 October 2016 - 11:52
German playboy (losely inspired by Hans-Joachim Marseille)
Born in Berlin on $[birthdate] to the family of Imperial infrantry Hauptmann (later Reichswehr and Berlin police officer), $[name] had a difficult childhood in strange mix of poverty and decadence that was Berlin of 1920s. When he was still relatively young his parents divorced and his mother re-maried a police officer called Hochbauer; $[lastName] was forced to assume his stepfathers name at school, only to revert to his fathers name in adulthood. Rebellious and undisciplined, there was no authority boy $[firstName] would respect, neither schoolteacher or his stepfather. Only in his late teens he started treating the school seriously, graduating from Gymnasium ahead of his age and expressing desire to become a „flying officer”.
$[firstName] has severed ties with his father after divorce and reconnected with him only early in adulthood. Father introduced him to Berlin nightlife; it failed to bond father and son tohether, but determined $[firstName]s lifestyle for years to come. He joined Luftwaffe in 1938 and begun his basic military training, then his pilot training. He was often at breach of military discipline; going AWOL when confined to base, breaking from landing circiut to dogfight imaginary opponents, landing on Autobahn in middle of cross-coluntry flight and knocking farmers down with slipstream – his many infractions kept him often grounded and underpromoted.
After initial service in ground defence unit, his record as Bf-109 pilot in Battle of Britain was less than stellar. Diving away from superior enemies without orders, staying in fight when ordered to abandon it, breaking formation to chase a Spitfire from his leaders tail – the gifted but unreliable pilot was often reprimanded for acting on his own initiative, his kill claims were not confirmed and he was not promoted. Meanwhile, his nightlife in occupied France was so busy he often had to be forbidden from flying next morning. The last straw was drawn when he abandoned his Staffelkapitän who was subsequently shot down – he was removed from his Geschweder back to air defence. His fondness for banned jazz music could be forbidden, but his inability to act as wingman could not.
It took $[lastName] more than a year to get back to any frontline unit, until on $[startDate] he joined $[StartSquad] fighting on the Eastern Front. His commander quickly realised that man of his initiative is going to be either great pilot or great disciplinary problem, and set out to mold him into the former. $[firstName], on his part, was as determined to improve his standing as he was in Gymnasium. Eastern Front offering fewer opportunities for partying and womanising than France, he may even succeed.
Edited by Trupobaw, 06 October 2016 - 12:14.
I need a new signature now. Thank you for RoF skinpack vol.19!
Posted 06 October 2016 - 14:30
Edited by Trupobaw, 06 October 2016 - 14:38.
I need a new signature now. Thank you for RoF skinpack vol.19!
Posted 06 October 2016 - 18:17
Edited by [TWB]80hd, 06 October 2016 - 18:20.
You should never fly lower than the target you're strafing. - Moach
Posted 06 October 2016 - 20:30
Posted 06 October 2016 - 23:12
80hd, nice bio
Two minor corrections, Aeroflot's name back then was just Aeroflot, and basic flight training was undertaken in tandem with studies and work so the pilot in question would still continue his studies while learning to fly at the local aeroclub.
Posted 07 October 2016 - 00:34
Good bio everyone
Edited by Nic727, 07 October 2016 - 18:36.
Posted 07 October 2016 - 01:14
Edited by hames123, 07 October 2016 - 01:19.
Posted 07 October 2016 - 02:08
Edited by hames123, 07 October 2016 - 03:01.
Posted 10 October 2016 - 11:53
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Veteran
<p>They say you were screaming as the groundcrew dragged you from the shattered cockpit.</p>
<p>Perhaps you were but you heard nothing of it. The world was silent, but for the distant sound from your broken legs and ankles. Twisted among the rudder pedals and the crumpled instrument panel, the pieces sang to you in pain and contortion.</p>
<p>Your nose were filled with the reek of petrol and your mouth was choked with the taste of rust. The weak sunlight, strangely red, filtered through the clouds and roared over your exposed skin. Shadows flickered across your vision. Shadows of men. They came into focus then vanished, only to return.</p>
<p>Hands fumbled across your torso, reaching for the buckles of your harness. Recoiling as they felt their heat, then returning with more determination and working the release. More hands grasped you under the shoulders and together they heaved. The song of pain from your legs and ankles rose to a crescendo. A note of purest agony. Whiter than snow, it carried you up like something Holy. Above the clouds it held you aloft, almost to the very heavens. Turning you over it laid you down as if on soft grass. The pain began to subside. And then, not for the first time, you were falling...</p>
<p>The doors of the ambulance slammed shut and the vehicle lurched forward. Something pricked into your arm. You tried to move it away, but gentle hands restrained you. A blackness began to overwhelm you. You fought against it. Struggled to stay in the light, but the darkness crept over you and you were gone.</p>
<p>For what seemed the longest time, you lived in the blackness. An animal existence. The torment of your injuries and an agony of thirst. Sometimes you would surface and see the light. Once on a train. Sometimes in a soft bed. Another time you awoke to grinding pain and many lights, as men in doctors robes worked to reset your shattered bones. Each time the darkness receded it would reveal something else. Through it all, your only companion was the unbearable crawling sensation in the skin of your face, hands and neck. But one day even that began to subside, as the blackness went away and the days took on form and measure. Only the nights seemed to last forever.</p>
<p>Time passes. Another train. You are moved to a rest area far behind the front, to a villa by a lake. It's rooms and outbuildings converted to a hospital. Here you learn to walk again. First with two sticks, then with only one. By the lake there is a small pier. Some tables and some chairs. You make an odd sight sitting there, staring at the sky. The walking stick planted between your knees. Your feet kicking at imaginary rudder pedals. Sometimes as if to control them. Other times as if fighting to be free of them.</p>
<p>Many patients come and go. You become restless. You ask the doctors, “Why am I still here?”</p>
<p>One morning you awoke to find you have a visitor. His blue breeches and shoulder boards reveal him as an officer of the Red Air Force. He sits in a chair next to your bed. Legs crossed, relaxed. Lightly tapping a clipboard against his knee. He introduces himself and asks after your health.</p>
<p>“What is your name?” He asks you. “$[name]” to tell him</p>
<p>“$[startRank]” you reply.</p>
<p>“You were born in Odessa, yes?” You assure him that was so.</p>
<p>“Tell me Comrade $[lastName], what combat experience do you have?”</p>
<p>You sit up. Swinging your legs over the side of the bed. The floor is cold and it burns. You tell him of your time fighting the Japanese in Manchuria, and the actions after June of 1941. When you get to the part of your last flight, you pause.</p>
<p>The lieutenant does not seem to notice. He is satisfied that he has found his man. He stretches, sits up straighter and consults his clipboard at last. ”Comrade $[lastName]" he recites. ”Your period of rest and relaxation is at an end. You will report to $[startSquad] no later than $[startDate] to resume active duty” He writes something on a slip of paper and hands it to you, getting to his feet. “Show that to the hospital administration to receive your documents and travel permit”</p>
<p>The lieutenant walks to the door. Before leaving he pauses and turns, as if remembering something.</p>
<p>“Oh... and good luck!”</p>
Edited by Feathered_IV, 20 October 2017 - 08:31.
Posted 10 October 2016 - 13:21
Edited by Cybermat47, 10 October 2016 - 13:27.
"Stalin's fortress on fire! Is this madness or hell? The sound of the mortars, the music of death! We're playing the devil's symphony! Our violins are guns! Conducted from hell! Oh Stalingrad!"
- From Stalingrad by Sabaton.
Posted 12 October 2016 - 10:33
Posted 27 October 2016 - 13:58
80hd, nice bio
Two minor corrections, Aeroflot's name back then was just Aeroflot, and basic flight training was undertaken in tandem with studies and work so the pilot in question would still continue his studies while learning to fly at the local aeroclub.
That's awesome, thank you! I will edit again when I have a bit to do it right.
You should never fly lower than the target you're strafing. - Moach
Posted 14 November 2016 - 23:20
<p>$[firstName] $[lastName] is charismatic, analytical, and dutiful but perhaps a little too free spirited for military life. After all, $[name] was born on $[birthdate] into a wealthy merchant family that didn’t pride itself with a military tradition like so many other boys who joined the <i>Deutsche Jungvolk</i> (German Youth) movement that encouraged acceptance of NSDAP authority.</p>
Posted 17 November 2016 - 16:30
Fictionalised biography loosely based on the career of Anna Yegorova (Ideal for the Kuban campaign where she took an active part). Ideal for a female pilot - could lead to awkward discrepancies otherwise.
As a further note - Soviet female pilots didn't truly begin to join the war until very late '41 through mid '42. As such I am including a final paragraph detailing what was happening to our imaginary pilot until they joined a squadron included in the sim. Delete if you feel it unnecessary.
<p> $[name] </p>
<p> $[name] was born into a large peasant family. During the Revolution and its aftermath, life was hard. The village $[name] lived in was small. By 1930 there were barely 45 houses. $[name] had 16 siblings, of which 8 died before they reached their majority. It was a cruel world with ceaseless toil, yet $[name] never ceased to look up into the sky. Yet the new Soviet system was good for $[firstname] - and a new school allowed her to learn her letters. At the end of her studies, it was recommended that $[name] study to become a teacher.</p>
<p> Yet the Soviet government had other ideas and as part of the five year plan $[name] went to build the Moscow Metro with 15,000 other workers. It was hard work, aided little by meagre lights. By chance however, on a lunch break, $[firstname] happened to see a poster: "Komsomol members! Take to the air!" When she arrived to sign up for the entrance examination, the recruiter rebuffed her. "Let the blokes do the flying!" </p>
<p> But $[lastname] wouldn't be dissuaded. With the support of her foreman from the Metro, $[firstname] was able to secure entry to become a pilot. On weekdays she worked in the Metro. On weekends she trained to fly. $[firstname]'s hands were so chafed from the Metro that she had to carry a bag with a special balm for them. Her first flight in the classic U-2 trainer that all Soviet pilots would gain their wings on she would never forget. It was a disaster. But her instructor gave her hope. "Moscow too wasn't built in a day." She improved. Her first solo was the happiest day of her life. </p>
<p> $[firstname] soon qualified as a pilot and completed her training. Yet her next objective - becoming an instructor - would be more difficult then she had at first thought. Her brother had been arrested in the purges, and as a family member, she was now under suspicion. She was forced to abandon her dream for the moment in the hope that things might die down. Eventually however - $[firstname] was at last able to find work as an instructor. June 21 found her with friends picnicking in a forest. It would be the last day of peace. </p>
<p> Initially $[firstname] met with little success in joining up. As her brothers joined up and were already fighting and the Germans advanced, her requests to fly in any capacity fell on deaf ears. Eventually, despite no orders being issued yet for the recruitment of female pilots, $[firstname] finally found employment in a Po-2 squadron, flying dangerous army cooperation assignments trying to keep battered and dispersed staff HQs in contact. It was dangerous and thankless. With the Po-2 effectively unarmed - any German aircraft that might catch it was a death sentence. Yet $[name] persevered. When the squadron was sent to the rear to reorganise. $[firstname] applied to join a combat squadron. It was time to revenge. </p>
Looking forward to this revised career.
Posted 22 November 2016 - 13:10
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Orphan
<p>God only knows what has become of your family.</p>
<p>God only knows what has become of your home, your town, and the people within it. There is so little news of what is happening in the occupied zones, and what word does filter out fills you with dread. You are alone in the world. Everything you knew and loved is gone. You realise that now, for all intents and purposes, you are an orphan.</p>
<p>You were at university in Moscow and far from home when news of the invasion reached you. You volunteered at once for the Red Air Force and were proud - but not too surprised, to be accepted into flight training. You had always been driven and worked yourself hard. As a result things often went your way. As time went by however, you would learn to curse your good fortune.</p>
<p>Flight training began at a rough field to the east of Moscow. Student pilots first learned to fly on fragile biplanes, taking it in turns to fly circuits of the field. Lectures were conducted outdoors when the weather was fine, and in converted railway carriages when it was not. The pace was hectic. The pressure unrelenting.</p>
<p>In the evenings the trainees would listen to the war reports and plot the advance of the enemy on rough maps, hand drawn or torn from schoolbooks. It was like watching the path of a flood. A disaster. Those whose homes and families were threatened would trace imaginary lines on the maps, saying hopefully, “Here and no further.” “Surely they will be halted here by this forest, or there by that river.” “They can't possibly keep coming.” “They must slow soon.” “They must...”</p>
<p>But the enemy did keep coming. One by one towns and cities fell. Rivers were forded and vast areas were swallowed up. Hardly a night would go by when as the news was read, someone would reel away from the group, stricken. You curse your misfortune in becoming a pilot. What you needed was a rifle <i>now</I>. Not an aeroplane when it was too late.</p>
<p>Then one night it was <i>your</I> town which was named. <i>Your</I> home which was threatened. Over the ensuing days the news reports spoke of encirclement and defence. Of heroic resistance, and the reprisals that followed. And then... nothing.</p>
<p>Two days later you went solo, but there was little joy in it. There was nobody to share your success with, and nobody with whom to share your loss. There is scarcely anybody who has not already lost someone to this war. Your pain is no different to what has already been felt by millions of others. Grief is communal, but everybody must suffer it alone.</p>
<p>The training continues and your flying improves. The news from the front is grim and everywhere there is talk of a fresh enemy offensive. Late one afternoon the trainees are startled to learn that all flying personnel are being graduated and further training is suspended. Signs are being posted outside the classrooms, with the names of each pilot with solo flying experience and the unit they are being posted to. Pandemonium, as all the students rush to see. You find your name halfway down the list.</p>
<p>Name: $[name] Unit: $[startSquad] Commencing: $[startDate]</p>
<p>The names of several of the instructors are also on the list. All around is chaos. NCOs are shouting. Lines of trucks are already arriving on the field to take the pilots away.</p>
<p>This is it.</p>
<p>Many of the new pilots look nervous. Some even look scared. Strangely, you find that you feel an odd sense of calm. You wonder why this should be, and for the first time in weeks you permit yourself the ghost of a smile.</p>
<p>You realise you have nothing left to lose.</p>
Edited by Feathered_IV, 17 August 2017 - 09:04.
Posted 25 November 2016 - 15:50
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Political
<p>Only in blood can you pay for your crimes.</p>
<p>You are an enemy of the People and a traitor to the State. You have been found guilty of aiding the enemy. Of spreading defeatism and anti-Bolshevik propaganda, and this court has sentenced you to death.</p>
<p>It has been determined that your position of authority, as a senior flight commander in an aerial reconnaissance unit in the vicinity of Krasnaya-Gora, allowed you to make unverified reports of enemy armoured columns on the highway west of K. Reports which contributed to a severe loss of fighting spirit at a crucial time of the town's defence. Furthermore, following evidence submitted by the Commander of the garrison in defence of K; Your criminal speculation that the town could not be held directly contributed to its subsequent loss, and allowed enemy mechanised units to occupy the heights east of the town virtually unopposed.</p>
<p>It was the recommendation of this court that the sentence of death be carried out immediately.</p>
<p>However despite the verdict of this court, the serious situation at the Front has created an urgent need for experienced aircrews - no matter how unworthy of that honour they may be. It was therefore determined that your sentence be suspended. That you be stripped of rank and transferred to an attack squadron with the role of gunner. Here it was expected that you would pay for your crimes with your life, and thus allow your debt to the State to be paid in full.</p>
<p>In the time since the above sentencing, the court acknowledges your combat record over the preceding months. As well as the positive recommendations of your successive commanding officers. It also takes into account the wounds you have received, and the new evidence regarding the state of the defences surrounding the town of Krasnaya-Gora, and its preparedness at the time of its encirclement and subsequent loss.</p>
<p>In light of the above, this court hereby reinstates you, $[name] with the rank of $[startRank] and returns you to flight status.</p>
<p>Due to the destruction and disbandment of your previous unit during your period of hospitalisation, you are officially transferred to $[startSquad], effective $[StartDate].</p>
Edited by Feathered_IV, 08 October 2017 - 12:38.
Posted 07 December 2016 - 13:28
What is the deadline for these by the way? I'm hoping to do a couple more if possible and if the devs think they will be useful.
Posted 14 December 2016 - 12:27
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Commander
<p>Suvarin was in command when you first joined the squadron. Suvarin was a bastard.</p>
<p>He was killed on the third day.</p>
<p>Suvarin was replaced by Korzhakov. Korzhakov was a good man. Soft spoken, with a wife and family in the east. He said the Unit was his family too.</p>
<p>He was killed on the eighth day.</p>
<p>Next came Bazanov, who believed in tight formations and strict discipline in the air. His section was jumped by enemy fighters on the eleventh, and none of them were seen again.</p>
<p>On the twelfth day you became a flight leader.</p>
<p>Antonovich was a Hero. He wore the Order of Lenin and took over from Bazanov on the fourteenth. He was aggressive and confident. The first to fight and the first to laugh. He was hit by friendly ground fire on the nineteenth and was horribly burned.</p>
<p>On the twenty-second day he died.</p>
<p>By the twenty-fourth you were the most senior pilot left alive, and on the twenty-fifth the unit was withdrawn to await reinforcements. Of those who remained, only you had served long enough to recall Suvarin, Korzhakov and all the rest.</p>
<p>New pilots arrived on the twenty-eighth, fresh from training. You did not want to remember their names.</p>
<p>On the thirty-first you became their Commander...</p>
Edited by Feathered_IV, 20 October 2017 - 08:41.
Posted 16 December 2016 - 23:16
i7 7700k | GTX 1080 Ti | 16GB Corsair Dominator DDR4 | LG 34UM95 3440x1440 | HTC Vive | TrackIR 5 | Saitek X-55 HOTAS | MFG Crosswind graphite pedals
Posted 17 January 2017 - 20:09
What is the deadline for these by the way? I'm hoping to do a couple more if possible and if the devs think they will be useful.
I'm curious about this myself.
Posted 19 January 2017 - 08:02
Edited by hames123, 19 January 2017 - 08:02.
Posted 18 April 2017 - 09:24
I've got four more that I am working on. The Replacement, The Survivor, The Outcast, and The Mouse. Are the devs still looking of more, and how much time is left?
Posted 19 April 2017 - 04:52
1. History which is contained by biogrpahy should be trunkated by Summer of 1916
This requirement seems to be for pilot biographies in Rise of Flight. Which year should be the guideline for Battle of Moscow, Battle of Stalingrad, and Battle of Kuban? Do we have to go with the years the individual conflicts started, or should we truncate it to the start of WWII/the start of Operation Barbarossa?
Posted 07 June 2017 - 12:14
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Survivor
It took two operations, before the doctors were satisfied that they had removed all the splinters of armour plate and German cannon-shell from your back.
The hospital where you awoke was close to the frontlines. Filled to overflowing and with no beds to spare. When you finally came to your senses, it was in a stinking, dimly lit corridor. Crowded among the wounded and the dying.
From where you lay it was impossible to look all around, but the sounds of misery from scores of wounded was telling enough. Opposite you was a small figure lying on its back, burned almost beyond recognition. The remains of a tankman's tunic rolled up and placed under its head as a pillow. The blackened driver's badge just visible.
In the half-light you stare at this hopeless, wounded creature. It's breathing was labored and shallow. Each intake of breath sounded like a sob. Each exhalation was like its last. You watched the curve of its chest rising and falling, and with a gasp of shock realised that this ruined figure had once been that of a young woman.
Slowly and by painful degrees, the head of the tank driver turned to face you. Blind, lidless eyes seemed to stare directly into yours. Could she see you? You feel ashamed. Embarrassed to be caught looking at her, helpless in her agony and her misery.
Don't worry, you say. It's alright. You will be alright.
The head moved almost imperceptibly to right and left.
There was nothing to say. What could you say? Her breathing became worse. It was strained, almost convulsive. She was crying.
Shh. Don't cry, please! Be calm. Try to breathe. Oh God, I'm sorry. Don't cry! I will sing for you. You are not alone. Don't cry. I will sing. Shh! Don't cry...
You sang the song that every soldier knows. Of the girl Katyusha, standing by the riverbank. Your voice was raw at first, but with each verse the tank driver's breathing eased. Perhaps knowing that someone was there made it easier for her. Her blind gaze travelled away from you and seemed to settle somewhere else, far away from that place.
You sang again, and again. On and on, far into the night. Each time you stopped, the blind eyes of the tank driver would turn back towards you. You sang the songs from your village. The ones your mother taught you, the ones the women sang in the fields, and the woodcutters in the forests. You sang about the summer, and the winter. Of love, of marriage, and of death. In the end, voice dry and barely audible, you murmured lullabies.
Sometime in the hours before dawn you fell asleep, but awoke again as first-light began to appear at the end of the corridor. The tank driver had died.
She lay there until mid-morning. Then a collection party appeared and began to gather up the dead. Two men prepared to remove her body. As they lifted the stretcher, her pay book fell from her ruined tunic. One of the stretcher bearers stooped to pick it up and you clutched at his sleeve.
He snatched his hand away in surprise.
"Wait, tell me! What was her name?"
The stretcher bearer, numbed by death just looked at you uncomprehendingly. Then there was a spark of recognition. He looked at the pay book in his hands, opened it and wiped the first page with his thumb, turning it towards the light. He read the name, frowning. "Elena" he said simply, before pocketing the book and without another word, moved to grasp his end of the stretcher. Then they took her away.
An hour later a different pair of stretcher bearers came for you. It appeared there were now some beds that were empty. One of the orderlies smiled faintly, "It's been a busy night." he said, by way of explanation.
Here you stayed for almost a week as you slowly regained strength. The days were long. The nights were much worse. Every day more wounded would arrive. You could hear them in the corridors. It was humiliating to be there, clearly recovering when so many are dying all around you. You think of your unit and your comrades too. You should be with them.
On the fifth day a schoolteacher from the nearby village arrived with a group of children, offering to sing patriotic songs for the wounded. They left after a short time, appalled.
By the sixth day you had made up your mind.
That night when the ward was in darkness, you rolled sideways and eased yourself out of bed. On shaking legs you stand, supporting yourself on the edge of the bed as you prepare for what you must do next.
Bending at the knees, you reach down. Hand searching blindly in the dark. Lower still, trying not to cry out at the wet ripping sensation in your back. Lower, until finally you find what you have been hoping for. Your boots.
It seems to take an age to pull them on. Your coat is there too, and grunting with the exertion manage to get it around your shoulders. Nobody challenges you as you exit the ward and pick your way along the crowded corridor to step out into the night.
In the rear courtyard there are stretchers too. But the bodies on them are lying still, their faces covered. There is no way to be sure, but you wonder if there is one there, smaller than the rest. With a tankman's tunic for a pillow.
From nearby you can hear the sound of vehicles, and follow a path which leads to the road. Columns of trucks are passing, all going in the same direction. To the front.
On the far side of the road half a dozen covered trucks are halted and lines of soldiers are climbing back aboard. Waiting for a break in the traffic, you hasten across and introduce yourself to a group of drivers. You tell them what you want.
What is your unit? They ask.
$[startSquad] you tell them. They shake their heads. Never heard of it. They ask where you are stationed, and brighten when you tell them. Yes, they have heard of that. We can get you there, they say. Come with us!
You are shown to the last truck in the column, and helped up into the back to be seated with the troops. They make way grudgingly at first. Suspicious as fighting men often are, of those who are not a part of their inner circle. Silence. Then a series of pointed questions as they size you up. But by the time the trucks engines roar into life and the vehicles begin to edge carefully out into the traffic, you seem to have earned a measure of acceptance.
The soldiers have nothing to drink, but they share what food they have with you. Bread and boiled potatoes. The man opposite gives you a twist of paper that contains some salt. You eat slowly, swaying with the motion of the vehicle. Looking out over the tailgate of the truck and back over the convoy beyond.
The truck is followed closely by a company of tanks. The driver's hatch of the one in front is open and you can see the driver quite clearly in the moonlight. It is a woman. She wears no helmet and her face is pale, her chin grimy. Her eyes are clouded with fatigue. You watch her for some time, but her eyes never leave the road and she does not look at you.
The trucks continue west and you eventually fall asleep like the others, head resting on the shoulder of the man next to you.
Throughout the night and into the next day, the convoy continues to crawl forward. It halts twice. Once to allow the drivers some rest, and once more to avoid enemy aircraft. Late in the afternoon the truck stops again, as the occupants of the cab bang on the sides of the doors and shout, "Pilot Out!"
You climb clumsily down from the truck. The driver is pointing, across the fields and to a row of trees beyond. "Pilot, that way!"
The truck moves off again. You shout your thanks and raise a hand in farewell to the troops. Then turning, set out for the distant row of trees and the airfield beyond.
You walk across three fields to get there. Stumbling over furrows and uneven ground. Halfway across as you stop to rest and hear the sound of aero engines. Two flights of familiar aircraft fly low overhead and begin to circle the field as they prepare to land. You want to shout, to wave. But instead hasten on.
The sun is low in the sky when you finally arrive. Through the line of trees that mark the airfield perimeter, and down to the end where the administration and personnel buildings are located.
The sights and sounds of an operational airfield have a welcome familiarity and give you a sense of homecoming. A relief that you have not felt for weeks. The mess building is there. Its windows already shuttered for the night and a wisp of smoke coming from its chimney. From inside you can hear the hubbub of voices.
You open the door and with a sense of anticipation step inside, a ready smile on your lips. After long weeks of ordeal it will be good to see your comrades again.
All the aircrew are there. Some gathered around the stove in the centre of the room. Others are sprawled in the odd assortment of chairs that you remember so well. As you enter, the pilots all turn to look curiously at you. Your smile of just a moment before fades away...
They are strangers.
Of the comrades with whom you fought and served barely a month before, not one remains. There is not a single face you remember.
The room is silent and they stare at you. A dishevelled apparition that has suddenly appeared among them. With stammering, halting sentences you begin to speak. You explain your return. They are polite, sympathetic even. But distant, and soon their attention turns inwards again. Disappointed and dejected you stand awkwardly, but are saved when the door opens behind you. Borisov, the Base Commander enters. At last, a familiar face.
" $[lastName] !" He cries and moves towards you. "We thought you were gone from us for good!"
You take a step back and give a hasty salute to forestall him. Borisov has a reputation as a backslapper. You explain your early return from hospital. Your unauthorised journey. You hope it will not be a problem?
"Do not worry," he promises vaguely, "We will call the hospital..." Then asks the question that concerns him most. "Can you fly?"
You are exhausted. The last thing you feel able to do is fly.
"Of course!" you say.
Borisov tells you that new aircraft have just arrived. Presumably the ones you saw landing earlier. Like a father promising his child a treat, he says you can go and choose one for yourself. Without quite realising it, you have been ushered to the door and find yourself standing once more outside.
At least he ground crew are the same... They remember you and welcome you back fondly. A small group of armourers and mechanics accompany you as you inspect the new aircraft. Later you share a meal with them in a corner of one of the hangars.
It is dark when you take your leave and assisted by two junior groundcrew, walk unsteadily to the aircrews billets. The events of the past few days are fast catching up with you and your fatigue is such that you can barely stand upright. To your surprise a place has already been found for you, and you collapse into bed. Exhausted.
You awake briefly, just once during the night. There are people standing over you. The base doctor is there too. Examining your wounds, asking questions. You fall asleep again, and dream of darkened, blood-soaked corridors and blind, staring eyes.
You awake the next morning, with a feeling of disorientation. It takes a moment to remember where you are. Your coat hangs beside the bed, brushed and clean. You do not remember taking it off. You sit on the edge of the bed. Your boots are there too. They are easier to get on this time.
You are hungry. But instead of going to the mess building, you find yourself drawn the other way. Back towards the hangars. Your path takes you past the revetments and rows of dispersed aircraft. Many sport patriotic slogans on their fuselages. Others carry words of defiance against the enemy - the heraldry of a People's air force at war.
Outside the hangars the ground crew have already wheeled out your new aircraft, and it stands ready for its first flight. As you had requested the night before, one of them has painted a slogan of your own in white lettering along the left hand side of the fuselage. It shines brightly in the dawn light. In a neat, flowing script it says simply, "For Elena"
You stop some distance from the aircraft to look at it. Thinking of that young tank driver, dying forgotten and unmourned in a hospital corridor.
Brisk footsteps sound behind you. It is the Political Officer. He hurries past, intent upon some errand of his own. He slows as he sees you and pauses just long enough to take in the message on the fuselage. He points to it...
"Remove that immediately!" He says, before continuing on his way.
Edited by Feathered_IV, 03 November 2017 - 08:05.
Posted 10 June 2017 - 07:46
You need to write a book about WW2.
I'm reading your posts and I'm there in their war.
Does Elena have a sister?
Edited by Haza, 10 June 2017 - 07:48.
Posted 26 June 2017 - 07:52
Edited by Feathered_IV, 02 July 2017 - 08:48.
Posted 29 June 2017 - 12:26
I know this is a bit offtopic, but I didn't know where else to put it.
In RoF Career mode, I would play with a kind of self imposed hardcore mode. If I lost my pilot I would create a new pilot and rejoin the same squadron the day after that pilot died as a battle casualty replacement.
Because I had effectively started a new game though, there was no history of my previous pilot having ever been part of the squadron. I don't know if this is too much to ask, but if it's not going to cause too much work, would it be possible to have a kind of iron man mode, where you can progress through the war, but if your pilot dies or is captured, then he is dead, but you carry on as the fresh battle casualty replacement, but you can see your previous pilots tally's on the squadron leaderboard, assuming they have such a thing in WW2, or even a wall of pictures of fallen comrades.
Posted 01 July 2017 - 15:26
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Novice
I fell in love with the Yak fighter from the moment I saw it.
The day was cold, and the sky was dark with rain. The field too wet for flying.
It sat purposeful on the grass in front of the revetments. Compact and lethal, it gleamed in the rain. The water beaded on its surface and ran in rivulets down its flanks. I approached it slowly. It was a potent, brooding looking creature. Even on the ground it seemed to lean forward, every inch of it straining to be away.
The groundrcrew withdrew, huddled in their rain capes as I circled the machine and inspected it from every angle. It was a hunter. Tiger-striped in black and green. From the front, its open intakes were narrow. Pursed as if in the beginnings of a mighty shout. If it were given voice, I felt it would bellow,“Oura!!!”
Ducking under the wing, I emerged on the opposite side. I slapped my open palm on the top of the fuselage and felt the satisfying boom of reinforced plywood under my hand.
I found the handholds and climbed up onto the wing, It didn't tip and sway like the U-2 and R-5 trainers that I was used to. Instead the Yak with its wide undercarriage merely dipped a wing. An accommodating gesture as it took my weight. A nod between comrades. It gave, but it did not submit.
The canopy felt heavy, but slid back smoothly. Swinging one leg over the edge of the cockpit, I could place my foot inside, into the space just behind the control column. Then pivot to draw the other leg up and over the sill and place a hand on each side of the cockpit edge, lowering myself down.
The seat itself was a curved slab of solid armour plate. It wrapped around me and extended up and behind to protect my head. It was icy cold, but reassuring in its strength. Nothing at all like the metal tube and timber slats that I was used to. I settled my shoulders into it, then practised twisting left and right to look to the rear. The groundcrew were nowhere in sight.
I slid the canopy closed.
The cockpit smelled sharp and cruel. A mixture of fuel, metal and sweat. I breathed in lungfuls of the air. Eager to take in the scent and become a part of this thing. I watched as I exhaled and the condensation clouded the inside of the perspex canopy.
The controls felt good. Solid, and well-sized for gauntleted hands. Everything was easily within reach. The throttle and the large trim wheels, high and forward. Easy to reach for and to grasp without looking.
I tested the control column. Moving it to left and right, I could feel the cables moving like sinews within the aircraft and see the control surfaces respond. On the top of the spade grip were the triggers. I felt for them with my thumb, while watching the raindrops chase one another on the windscreen. I picked one out. Imagined it as an enemy fighter sliding across my path. It moved slowly, erratically at first. Then the drop gathered speed and dived down the windscreen, racing through the centre of the gunsight.
My thumb drifted away from the firing levers... Not yet.
The time would come soon enough. I could feel it. I could sense the gravity of the moment. This was where I would be made, or where I would end. This would be my battleground.
A drop of rain ran like cold sweat down the side of my neck.
I sat alone in the cockpit for a long time. The only sound, the drumming of the rain outside and the ticking of the clock on the instrument panel.
I can do this. I thought to myself.
I swear, I can do this....
Edited by Feathered_IV, 20 October 2017 - 08:57.
Posted 06 July 2017 - 08:03
Feathered: Are you a professional writer of some sort? Everything you write is gold, even when it's just an off-the-cuff joke.
P-51 won the war.
Posted 06 July 2017 - 14:18
Wow, that's very nice of you to say.
I don't have any real writing experience though. To be honest it doesn't always come that easy and I have to labour over it a bit. I guess one of the big differences between a professional and an amateur is the speed at which they can work.
As for some of those jokes... I wish I could take them back sometimes.
Posted 14 July 2017 - 13:00
Here you go Haza. This one is for all the younger players out there too.
RUSSIAN PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Mouse
"How old are you?" asks the recruiting Sergeant suspiciously.
You stand up to your full, not very impressive height and stare straight ahead, "Eighteen, Comrade Sergeant!" you say, as confidently as you can.
"Don't lie to me, boy..." His chair scrapes and the Sergeant moves swiftly around the side of the desk. He looms over you, his expression fierce. His eyes are blue and diamond hard. His face is pockmarked with scars. He is so close, you can smell the stink from the mottled stump of his left arm. He radiates menace.
"I said how old are you?" he growls.
You try to meet his eyes, but shrink under the force of his gaze. It is all you can do not to take a step backwards. Sagging, head bowed, you answer him truthfully.
"Fifteen..." you say, defeated.
"Fifteen." The sergeant looks at you for a long time, then at the line of waiting men that extends behind you. "Fifteen" he repeats to himself, shaking his head.
The Sergeant's leg drags slightly as he returns to sit heavily behind his desk. He exhales with a sound that is something like a sigh and runs his hand over his scalp. His hair is close-cropped and prematurely white. He looks at you again. "Earliest recruitment commences at seventeen." he says, almost kindly. “Do you understand me?” You nod, miserably. He considers you a moment longer. There is something in his expression. A sadness perhaps. Then in an instant his face hardens again and his next words are like a slap.
"Go home to your mother!"
Back in the hallway again you stand alone, humiliated. You feel tears pricking at the corners of your eyes but blink them away hastily. I will not cry! you tell yourself. I will not cry. And slowly, with an effort your vision clears. Across the hall is another door with a sign next to it which reads: Ground Staff Recruitment.
You stare at it for a moment, then slowly the words take on meaning. A deep breath. Then another. In two strides you are across the hall.
You knock on the door and without waiting step inside. The office is narrow and cluttered. Empty, but for one man behind a desk. He wears spectacles and has thinning dark hair. He looks up...
"Aircrew and pilot training is across the hall." he says wearily.
"Yes, I know..." you reply. "I am volunteering for ground duty."
"Oh!" The man tries to cover his surprise. "Oh, of course!" Then a moment later, "How old are you?"
"Seventeen!" you tell him.
You expected to go to training, to be taught to march, salute and to learn a trade. But these were dark times. War had come, unexpected and swift. The enemy was racing through the country like a pack of wolves. The Motherland was being devoured.
You went with what you had.
Processing was fast. Without full documents and with the birth records from your district deep inside the occupied zone, you were just another warm body for the military machine. New documents were filled out. Stamped, and stamped again. Then you were directed to the rear of the building and out through the courtyard. Past the area where candidates for aircrew and flight training were lining up for their medicals.
The warehouse beyond received the passing recruits. You were ushered through and you showed your new documents. Down the length of the warehouse floor were piles of uniform clothing and equipment. Individual heaps of boots, tunics, trousers and more.
The men of the recruiting station here are practised thieves. Three of them descend on you the moment you enter. While one snatches away your documents, the other two are screaming at you, forcing you to strip. With nothing left but your underclothes, your documents are thrust back at you, and with a shove you are sent stumbling towards the first pile of equipment. Get yourself sorted and do it now! One item from each pile and exit at the rear of the building. And don't take all day about it - he trucks are leaving in five minutes!
You grab what you can, in whatever size you can. Behind you, the three recruiting staff are rifling through the pockets and seams of your civilian clothing for whatever valuables they can find. Your last few roubles disappear. As does your small silver fountain pen and the remains of the bread and boiled sweets that you had been saving for the journey.
No time to dress. Clutching your new gear you are chased to a row of trucks and “assisted” into the back of the nearest one. As each truck is filled, it sets off with a roar and a grinding of gears.
The trucks travel by an unfamiliar route at breakneck speed. Jolted and slammed against the sides of the truck, you dress clumsily and struggle into your boots. After a punishing journey the truck screeches to an abrupt halt. The canvas covers are thrown back and you are herded out with the rest onto a filthy, crowded railway platform. Several dozen other recruits are already here, and a disorderly bazaar is taking place, as each one desperately tries to trade their ill-fitting pieces of uniform for something approaching their size. After some hard bargaining you have clothes which though still too large, you feel gives you some semblance of a military appearance.
You retreat to the edge of the crowd. The civilian section of the railway platform is cordoned off from the recruits. Though only a short distance separates you, each group stares at one another as if already a world away. Further down the platform a whistle blows as your train arrives. The first of many as it turns out.
You were posted to an attack squadron and served as an armourers mate. There were several such helpers among the ground personnel, though none were nearly so young as you. The ground crews nicknamed you Myshka – the Mouse. Disparagingly at first, but later as the months went on, with an edge of respect.
The work was hard, but you stood up to it uncomplainingly. You did any job the regular ground crews either could not or would not do themselves. From dragging boxes of ammunition on improvised sleds, to long hours spent assembling the fins of the short rockets that the Il-2's carried. It had been made clear that at any time a senior armourer was at work, it was your duty to be on hand if called to assist. Consequently, as armourers and maintenance crews routinely worked around the clock, you were never far from the flight line. Sleep became the rarest luxury.
There would be a respite of sorts, in the quiet after the aircraft had left on a sortie. The airfield would fall silent, and the ground crews would eat a hasty meal or try for a moment's fitful sleep near the revetments. Then after a time the anxious wait would begin as the returning aircraft were due to return home.
Your eyesight was excellent and you were often the first to sight the returning aircraft.
In those early days, the single-seat Il-2 aircraft flew ground attack missions daily and were seldom escorted. Their losses were heavy. Later, some aircraft are modified to add a crude gunner position behind the pilot and things improved somewhat. No extra aircrew are provided however, and it was forbidden for two pilots to fly in the same aircraft.
Volunteers were called for from among the groundcrews, and after the briefest of gunnery and signals training, they went into action with their pilots. In the very same aircraft that they serviced.
At last, this was a chance to fly and to fight. In the few months since you joined the unit, you had eventually gained a reputation as a dedicated and dependable worker. This same dependability held you in good stead now, and you were among the first to be selected for the added role of auxiliary gunner.
Getting ready for a sortie, you would emerge from the crew sheds feeling like a shabbily dressed knight. With heavy gauntlets and steel helmet. Swathed in woollen underclothes and topped with your “peasant armour”. A heavy kapok vest that extended to your knees, as protection against shrapnel. There would be a quick meeting with the pilot to discuss the mission. Then you would be helped up into the rear cabin to take up your position.
Ground attack sorties were the order of the day and most often consisted of strikes against road and rail traffic, plus the bombing of bridges and river crossings. Attacking vehicle columns was the best, and it was wickedly satisfying to come in low and catch them unaware. To lash at convoys of trucks with machine-gun bullets, and see the troops come boiling out of them like ants as you flashed by overhead.
At this time of year the weather was frequently bad. Ground fire was the biggest threat, and you seldom saw an enemy aircraft. Once however while returning home after a mission, a lone Messerschmitt cautiously approached and slowly crept up on your aircraft.
Standing up in the slipstream so the enemy could get a good look at you, you swung your machine gun purposefully to left and right and fired a few rounds of tracer. The Messerschmitt sensibly curved away and went looking for easier game.
In all you flew 18 sorties with various pilots, often after working through the night preparing aircraft for the first sortie the following day. The arrangement was not without its benefits however. On your return you would usually be excused from further duty, and allowed a warm meal and six hours of uninterrupted sleep before returning to the flight line.
This was the pattern of life for your first summer of the war.
The work and the sorties continued. So too did the losses. As the need was great, representatives of the air training establishments would periodically travel among the squadrons seeking suitable candidates for flight training. It was on one of these visits that you received permission to apply to the selection committee.
You had grown in the time since you joined the squadron, and passed the physical examination conducted by the base Medical Officer. “I wish I had your eyesight” he said ruefully. He pronounced you fit, then dismissed you to return to your duties. You expected to be called later in the day to attend an interview. The selection committee, consisting of three officers and a junior NCO typist, had set themselves up at a trestle table beneath a large oak tree by the administrative buildings. Here they were seeing volunteer applicants not just from your unit, but from the Pe-2 and night bomber regiment who also shared the field.
Throughout the day you waited, but by dusk you still had not been called. To your dismay, the selection committee packed up their files and their equipment, loaded everything into trucks and departed.
It was a bitter blow, not to be interviewed. To be denied even a chance to prove yourself. You did not know why, but had to assume you had failed to meet the criteria in some way. Not wanting to show your disappointment, you threw yourself back into your work with greater determination.
Weeks went past. How many you could not say. Like everybody else you lived merely one day at a time. There was one day in particular though – as you worked to help prepare the returning aircraft for the second sortie of the day. A call came for gunners from among the ground crew, and you were one of those who stepped forward. This time however, you were not permitted a place in one of the aircraft. Unsure why, you hid your disappointment and along with the rest watched the Sturmoviks go, staying until all of the aircraft had departed and the last engine note had died away.
It was always an oddly forlorn feeling, as the ground crews trailed back to the sheds after the squadron had left. There would be a quick meal and a short break. Then the work would begin to receive the returning aircraft.
This time you were surprised to find that someone had made an effort to decorate an area in front of the nearest shed with scraps of cloth and ribbon. A brazier was going, and the rations were already being prepared. You approached in astonishment. Several mechanics and armourers were there already, and grinning beckoned for you to join them. Together, they wished you a happy birthday.
You could not have been more surprised. You had concealed your age for so long, you hardly thought to keep track any more. It was with a tinge of guilt that you accepted their congratulations.
Many of the ground staff came forward to give you presents. Small things, but kindly meant, and you felt tears in your eyes as you received them. You blushed profusely as two of the female mechanics kissed you on both cheeks and gave you a scarf of red silk.
One and all, they wished you a happy birthday.
Overcome, you began to speak. To give thanks. But Gorev, the chief armourer interrupted,
“Have we no more gifts for our Myshka?” he asked loudly.
Knowing smiles from those assembled. Somebody came forward and handed Gorev an envelope. He passed it to you
You took it in both hands and looked at it, mystified.
“Open it” someone said.
The first document was a travel warrant. Freshly typed and signed by the Unit Commander himself. The second document looked older. Creased and well thumbed at the corners. As if it had already been passed around and read many times.
You read the document and your breath caught in your throat. You looked up, eyes brimming with tears. The ground crews laughed and applauded.
It was a letter of reassignment. Transfer orders to report to Birskaya Military Aviation School for pilot training...
Looking back, you often think of that unit. Whenever you see an Il-2, either in the air or coming in to land. You wonder where they are now, and if you will ever see any of them again. Now that your flight training is over and you are on the eve of your first operational posting; you wish them well, and hope that they will remember you too.
Edited by Feathered_IV, 14 September 2017 - 08:20.
Posted 15 July 2017 - 03:36
Posted 15 July 2017 - 13:21
Edited by Feathered_IV, 16 July 2017 - 00:58.
Posted 15 July 2017 - 13:32
LUFTWAFFE PILOT BIOGRAPHY - The Outcast
It wasn't your fault!
That's what you told yourself, as the Spitfire slanted downwards and slipped neatly inside of your turn. It wasn't your fault. It was the damned aircraft that was wrong. It couldn't climb high enough. Couldn't turn tight enough. Couldn't roll fast enough... It was wrong!
Wings vertical, poised like a dagger. The Spitfire was barely a few plane-lengths behind you as its pilot brought the nose of the aircraft inexorably around and centred his sights upon your cockpit.
A brief burst from his Brownings. A ranging shot. You felt rather than heard the impact of rounds somewhere in the tail of your aircraft. The accursed Englander ceased fire and tightened his turn still more. Lines of vapour streamed from his wingtips. Wicked looking cannon barrels jutted out like fangs as he prepared to fire again.
Desperately, you pulled back further on the stick...
The stall was as vicious as it was unexpected. Even as you cursed it and fought to recover, it saved your life. The Spitfire boomed over your cockpit as it overshot and straightened out. Wings rocking to left and right as the pilot sought to reacquire you.
Tumbling, engine still screaming and at full power. You spun once, twice, three more times before you regained some semblance of control. Coming out of the spin in a vertical power dive, the Spitfire was already coming back around and heading down after you as you plunged into the clouds.
In the grey light of the overcast and trembling with anger and fright, you pulled out carefully and throttled back on the overworked engine. The controls felt sluggish. Maybe even worse than usual. Damn it all. Everything seemed to be working against you this day. The English, the weather, the worst aircraft in the Staffel... You swore again, checked the compass and the fuel gauge. Then with shaking hands set a course for home.
Ten minutes later you emerged cautiously beneath the overcast to see the familiar curve of the French coastline as it slid beneath your wings. A slight course correction, 15 degrees to the right and a few minutes later your home base appeared through the haze.
The engine definitely felt rougher as you entered the circuit. Without even bothering to wait for permission from the tower, you lowered flaps, released the undercarriage and lined up on the grass in the centre of the field.
The wheels bounced once, touched again, then rolled. You relaxed finally as the aircraft slowed. But without warning it veered suddenly to the left, rising up on one wheel as it entered a ground loop. The left wing dug in and the machine spun through 180 degrees. Then with a howl of tortured metal, the undercarriage collapsed.
The Hell with it! Climbing out you retrieved your parachute and just walked away from the whole untidy mess. Let someone else clean it up. It wasn't your fault.
It wasn't your fault, you told the CO and the other pilots that evening after an awkward dinner in the mess. How could you be expected to achieve victories, to do your duty, when the aircraft you fly do not perform as they should. You produced the aircraft manual which you always carried, and opened it up to the pages and passages which you had outlined in red. Here you said, was your proof. There should be an investigation!
But they weren't listening. They had heard it all before. The Major sat slumped in his chair with a hand over his eyes. Others were looking away. Some of the pilots observed that aircraft in the field behave differently to those described in a manual. And what should you believe anyway – a real-live operational aircraft, or some numbers in a book?
But you were having none of it. Your cause was just. At readiness the following day, in the mess and in the bar that night, you kept pushing. Eventually you knew, something would be done.
Things came to a head a few days later, when two new pilots with whom you had been speaking the night before had declined to engage a pair of Blenheims. Their reason being that they had been warned that the bomber's return fire was just too accurate.
The Kommandeur was livid.
That night in the mess and in front of the entire Staffel, he took you to task. He forbid you to speak to the junior pilots. He called you a career moaner. A malcontent. A tactical simpleton and a threat to morale.
You exploded. All restraint forgotten. Your frustrations and resentment that had been building up over the last few weeks were unleashed. You screamed and ranted at the injustice of it all. You brought them Fact, you shouted. Pure Fact and and a Better Way! And all they could do was cling to their old misconceptions, and even mock you. Just because you did not pander to their delicate sensibilities.
Well one day soon they would see, you told them. They would see that you were right! And then, you said, with a significant glance at the Herr Major - then there would be an accounting...
That said, you spun on your heel and stormed out of the mess and into the night.
Back in your billet, you paced the floor loudly. Your boots hammering on the polished timber floor. As your fury subsided, an almost euphoric feeling crept over you. Still flushed with adrenaline, you felt better than you had ever done since joining the Staffel.
Gott im Himmel, you had really told them! There could be no denying you now. People would talk. They always do, and your words would ring out like a sermon to spread through the entire Jagdwaffe.
By God yes, you had told them! You went to your kit and fished out a bottle of cognac. You treated yourself to a glass. Then another, and went to bed contented.
The next morning you awoke to find you had been grounded for two weeks...
Being off flying duty was bad enough - it implied that you had done something wrong. However being snubbed by the other pilots was worse. Instead of lauding you for your forthrightness, they would avoid you. Ignore you, or turn away.
One evening in the mess, you were determined to have your say. You interrupted the flow of conversation and tried to break the ice by expounding your views on tactical doctrine. You had only been speaking for a few minutes when one of the ground staff entered the room. It appeared there was an urgent call for you from Headquarters...
You were surprised, and not a little flattered. However you managed to bestow the situation with the solemnity it deserved. Rising from your chair, you straightened your uniform and clicked your heels as you excused yourself. Bidding the pilots to please, continue the most interesting discussion.
A long walk outside and to an adjoining building. The ground-man directed you to a telephone in a darkened corridor and immediately withdrew. You cleared your throat and put the receiver to your ear.
The line was dead. The telephone wasn't even plugged in.
You sighed... Let them have their joke.
Later on in your billet however, it gave you an idea. That night and over the course of the next few days, you penned a series of letters addressed to Air Fleet headquarters, the Reich Ministry, and after only the barest hesitation - to the Fuehrer himself. Writing in bold capitals, you damned the squadron, its pilots, its leadership and most importantly - the aircraft and their performance. You sent the packet of letters off with the next mail. At last, you said to yourself with satisfaction. Something would be done!
The next few days were spent in a grim expectation. On the day of your reinstatement to flight duty, you awoke early. Dressing carefully in your best uniform, you intended to catch the Major on the way to breakfast. However to your surprise, you received an immediate summons to the Kommandeur's office.
It was odd to enter the room and see the Major, the Adjutant, and Stahl the Chief Medical Officer were also present. You saluted formally and stood to attention, waiting for the guard to withdraw and close the door behind him. He remained however, and for a very long moment it was silent. Then the Major spoke...
“I was wrong.” he said simply.
Only the slightest smile creased your lips, but inside you were triumphant. At last!
Finally, after weeks, even months of campaigning, Finally. Everyone would know that you were right. Your vision. Your Fact! You were determined to savour the elixir of vindication to the full. But for now it was important to be gracious, and you were determined to be so.
“Herr Major...” you began, in a conciliatory tone.
“Do not interrupt me!” He said sharply, and you paused in astonishment. The adjutant and the Doctor were watching you keenly.
“I was wrong to keep you here.” the Major continued, “Particularly as you are so patently dissatisfied with the er...”
“Everything” the adjutant said helpfully.
“Yes,” said the Major, with a nod to the adjutant and making an elegant sweeping motion with his hand. “Since you are so dissatisfied with the everything.”
Your eyes followed the Major's gesture, and his hand returned to rest upon the desk. Upon a pile of familiar looking letters... Your letters.
Your eyes widened in shock. How dare they!
“Our little war here is obviously not to your liking” said the Major, tapping his fingers upon the wad of envelopes under his hand. “I understand that even the sun itself does not rise and set in a direction that suits you?” he asked, raising an eyebrow.
You shifted uncomfortably. You may have written something about that. Attacking the British from the east in anything other than early morning gave either a neutral or advantageous position to the enemy. It wasn't fair.
The Major offered you a tight smile, but his eyes remained hard. “I think we may be able to help you with that at the very least...” he said, with mock friendliness. “It just so happens we have another war. I didn't care for it much myself, but you are most welcome to it...”
He opened his desk drawer and produced an envelope. “You like letters” he said, making it a flat statement, “Well, here's a letter for you too!”
The Major flipped the envelope onto the desk and motioned for you to take it.
The doctor and the adjutant leaned forward in anticipation. At the door, the guard's boots creaked loudly as he rose up on the balls of his feet, straining to see...
You took the envelope and opened it. There was a single document inside.
Transfer papers... You were going to Russia.
Edited by Feathered_IV, 11 August 2017 - 10:24.
Posted 24 July 2017 - 01:38
Posted 24 July 2017 - 11:11
Ouch sorry Lucas, my bad! I searched for VVS training centres and came up with that one. There are very few mentioned in English and I went with that one without getting a map out to see where it was. Are there any you could recommend, preferably east of Moscow? I'll happily edit that with your recommendation.
Posted 24 July 2017 - 11:59
Edited by 55IAP_Lucas_From_Hell, 24 July 2017 - 12:47.
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