• Published 9th Jan 2017
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The Atlantean-Dominion War - The Atlantean

Crimson Dawn enlists in the Atlantean Reserve Emergency Army (AREA) to defend Atlantis from the Dominion of Apollo.

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44. The Battle of Haven Cove Part 2

Middle Road rubbed her forehead. “This is one major pickle.”

Almost the entire northern end of the peninsula was controlled by the Dominion. Red lines signifying enemy ranks on the map were in placed stacked four or even five deep on both ends of their line. A tent marked where the Dom camp was located; a green one stood for the Atlantean HQ. All along the coast, fortifications were duly marked by returning scouts and taken into consideration for every move made.

“Exactly,” Silvercrest replied. “Those damn Doms outnumber us more than five to one and they can hold the ground they take. The casualties we’ve suffered have been indispensable soldiers. We can’t replace them. But for every Dom we kill, they’ve got four more just waiting to get in line. They have the troops, they have the ammo, and they have the food. They could simply sit there forever if they wanted, and they know it.”

“What guns do they have here, about six miles north of here? Artillery-wise.”

The General scratched her head. “Twelves? Maybe twenty pounders? The Doms have some big field guns, that’s for damn sure. All we’ve got are the ten six-pounders from town and a unit of twelves from when we split the army.”

“My main guns have the range, and since R&D figured out the ammo, they’re pumping more out. We can hit them from three miles away, probably farther if you could get us some indirect fire.”

“That wouldn’t be a bad idea, except that their guns are on hills. They can shoot you from that distance and afford to miss most of the time. Nightmane would get shredded.”

“That’s where a bit of sabotage comes in. if your scouts can get in, they can blow shit up. Take out those guns, and we can beat the shit outta them.”

“I don’t want to disappoint you, Captain, but this shore, the one you you’d need to be off, can’t be sailed. It’s too shallow - only about four feet deep at low tide five miles out.”

Captain Road smiled. “You have no idea what she’s capable of.”


Nightmane rode less than a foot from the bottom of the sea, her round-bottomed hull grinding against the sand as she hit the troughs and lifting free at the crests. Her screws were still. Captain Road had ordered her crew to row the destroyer to within confirmed firing range of their guns, opting to not slam the blades into sand that would most definitely destroy them and leave the ship stranded in dangerously shallow waters. After several hours rowing through the dark hours of the night with only the crescent moon’s silver light to guide them, they dropped anchor and prepared to fire in silence. There was no doubt that they would be shot at as soon as they were discovered.

Three miles to the west, hidden from sight by a fortunately dense morning fog, the Dom fortifications were fast asleep. Dawn passed by without a single alarm being raised. The fog cleared and the afternoon rains drenched the world. All the while, Silvercrest’s scouts were slowly messing around with the Dominion cannons, all primed and ready to fire at a moment’s notice - that was, if they didn’t learn just how much powder was now stuffed into the things.

The next day, as the fog cleared bright and early and the sun rose from the east, making the sea look like orange juice, the Dom flagpole toppled down like a felled tree. The Atlantean who did it ran off faster than a bullet as he yelled “TIIMMMBEEERRRRR!!!” at the top of his lungs.

Immediately, Middle Road lowered her hoof. Both the fore and aft five-inch guns, loaded, primed, and aimed, fired. The resounding booms left a tiny but terrifying dip in the water off Nightmane’s port beam. Two smokeless high-explosive rounds slammed into the earthen mounds, quickly followed by two more that spread the dirt even more evenly across the terrain. Sentries went flying and a couple of the cannons lost their foundation, tumbling to the bottom and spilling their contents.

The Doms had a fast reaction time. One gun crew was already turning their cannon to face Nightmane even as the second salvo rumbled in. Their gunner lit his match, they all stood back, and then the primer was ignited. A spark touched one of the bags of gunpowder. The powder exploded, sending a hot cannonball into the two bags stuffed in front of it and blew the whole cannon to smithereens. An adequately sized fireball mushroomed up from the carnage as other guns suffered the same fate. Within minutes, three quarters of the entire Dom artillery presence in the area was demolished and the rest was too heavily damaged to fight.

Silvercrest watched from a safe distance, shielded from view by the treeline. As soon as Nightmane launched a green flare, she whooped and waved all one hundred fifty of the ponies with her, the only surviving remnants of the Sixth Peninsula, towards the fire and flame, death and destruction. They were all possible casualties she didn’t want, but their sacrifice and hers were needed to defend home.

Home. Seventy percent of the ponies under her half of AREA came from here. This battle meant more to them than another victory. It meant keeping those they loved, so close to harm, from it. It meant protecting their way of life. The fact that their home was being invaded only reinforced that. If they lost now, they lost everything they cared about. This batch of battle-hardened veterans were more than they seemed, and they were more than willing to prove it.

By the time she and the Sixth made it to the center of the earthen fort, everypony had seemingly surrendered to the terrible metal beast out to sea. A white flag was being run up a makeshift flagstaff by two of the fourteen left.

But the other twelve weren’t normal Doms. They were what Silvercrest referred to as “Crazies.” They believed wholly in their cause and would do anything to make it come to life. They were fanatical to the point of near insanity.

One immediately whipped out a poorly crafted bow and loosed an arrow as soon as he saw her. It bounced off her helmet and she shot her new(ish) pistol at him in return. The remaining eleven tried to ambush the Atlanteans but were easily taken down. Silvercrest’s troops suffered three light wounds, not enough to cripple them. The General imagined a bright future in mopping up the rest of the Dominion’s army, especially now.

Author's Note:

I don't have much to say today.

Feedback appreciated, like always. It helps me become better at writing.

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