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At Dawn We Strike
Aviary Photo 130440771854631598
Some attributes
First Author: Ishmael Venables
Second Announce Date: May 7, 1746
Third Released Date: May 10, 1746
Other attributes
Fourth Previous Novel: Lieutenant Venables
Fifth Next Book: Unknown

To The ReaderEdit

This is the story of the conflict of EITC and Swiss Armed Guard, told from the viewpoints of Ishmael Venables and many others who fought there. William Seasteel once said that he wrote The Invasion of Ireland because reading the history was not enough; he wanted to know what it was like to be there,when the weather was like, what men's faces looked like. In order to live it he had to write it. This book was written for much the same reason. You may find it a different story from the one you learned in school. There have been many versions of that battle and that war. I have therefore avoided historical opinions and gone back primarily to the words of the men themselves, their letters and other documents. I have not consciously changed any facts I have condensed some of the actions, for the sake of clarity, and eliminated some minor characters, for brevity; but though I have often had to choose between conflicting viewpoints, I have not knowingly violated the action, I have changed some of the language. It was a naive and sentimental time, and the men spoke in windy phrases. I thought it necessary to update some of the words so that the religiosity and naïveté of the time, which were genuine, would not seem too quaint to the modern ear. I hope I will be forgiven that.

The interpretation of character is my own.

     Ishmael Venables

Tuesday, April 3, 1745Edit

Mine eyes have seen the glory...

Chapter 1: The SpyEdit

He rode into the dark of the woods and dismounted. He crawled upward on his belly over cool rocks out into the sunlight, and suddenly he was in the open and he could see for miles, and there was the whole vast army below him, filling the valley like a smoking river. It came out of a blue rainstorm in the east and overflowed the narrow valley road, coiling along a stream, narrowing and chocking at a white bridge, fading out into the yellowish dust of April but still visible on the farther road beyond the blue hills, spiked with flags and guidon like a great chopped bristly snake, the snake ending headless in a blue wall of summer rain. The spy tucked himself behind a boulder and began counting flags. Must be twenty thousand men, visible at once. Two whole Regiment. He could make out the familiar black hats of the First. Brigade, troops belonging to Nigel Crossbones's First Corps. He looked at his watch, noted the time. They were coming very fast. The Army of the Swiss had never moved this fast. The day was murderously hot and there was no wind and the dust hunt above the army like a yellow veil. He thought: there'll be some of them die of the heat today. But they are coming faster than they ever came before. He slipped back down into the cool dark and rode slowly downhill toward the silent empty country to the north. With luck he could make the southern line before nightfall.After nightfall it would be dangerous. But he must not seem to hurry. The horse was already tired. And yet there was the pressure of that great Division behind him, building like water behind a cracking dam. He rode out into the open, into the land between the armies. There was fat dutch barns, prim German orchards. But there were no cattle in the fields and no horses, and houses everywhere were empty and dark. He was alone in the heat and the silence, and then it began to rain and he rode head down into monstrous lightning. All his life he had been afraid of lighting but he kept riding.

More is coming!!!

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