Saturday 4 November 2023

The Bed Recapture

‘Good morning my dear.’

‘Now Ferdinand. Did you sleep well? You are up early for you.’

‘No. I was uncomfortable.’

‘Well, our bed is currently being transported back to Granada. I believe they are going to put it on display.’

‘On display? How dare they!’

‘Quite easily. They captured it from under your nose. Anyway, if you hurry you can intercept them at the Pass of Adutra.’

‘Ah, yes. I know that place. A very fine young lady came from there. She had a wonderful… um… singing voice. Yes, Voice. She was a base baritone.’

‘Remarkable indeed Ferdinand. I recall the young lady you mean. She could barely croak, but she did wear some low-cut dresses. I sent her away before she could catch pneumonia. Anyway, you should be able to lay an ambush for the Granadines at Adutra.’

‘I shall, I shall. They will ride straight into it.’

‘And then you can shut your trap, Ferdinand.’

‘No need to be like that, my dear. I’m trying my best.’


So, in order to get any marital action, Ferdinand needs to recapture his bed. Fortunately, Isabella has already discovered where the ox cart loaded with the bed is heading for, and is despatching Ferdinand to intercept it. Ferdinand still does not have his full heavy cavalry complement, but he does now outnumber the Granadans in jinites. He did not get his full army deployed last week, which I felt might have been a little unfair, so he gets to lie in wait for the bed-snaffling enemy this time.

The picture shows the situation after a few moves. Ferdinand, who does not really do subtlety, as you might have noticed, has his infantry astride the road and on the hills to each side, while the jinites are skirmishing forward to try to disrupt the enemy march column. His right-wing jinites are in combat and both sides have been a little disrupted. Still, the ox cart with its vital load is plodding along the road and should eventually turn up in Ferdinand’s hands.

A few moves later, and the Granada army is nearly deployed, while their left-wing jinites have forced the Castilians back a bit. On the other flank Ferdinand’s left has caused some damage to the remaining enemy lights, but their crossbowmen are now coming after them. Ferdinand is also starting to advance his infantry in the centre, concerned that his elements will be a bit far apart to support each other. The Granadine infantry is also pushing up, but they have suffered from insufficient tempo to get their heavier cavalry moving again.

The above picture shows the end of the game. The Granadine crossbowmen have forced Ferdiand’s left wing jinites back although they are still in action. However, this meant that those three bases of crossbowmen were not available to the centre. On the Granadine centre left you can see that a base of crossbows is forcing back (and has nearly broken) a base of Castilian shot. On the other hand, the Castilian foot, together with Ferdinand’s gendarmes have just destroyed the second base of Granadine spearmen. The first base can be seen routing in the centre of the picture. They have also accounted for the Granadine general. The ox cart is within reach of the Castilian foot now, as well. On the Castilian right the Granadine tempo drought has left the jinites lacking in orders and ability to reform, and one of the bases is looking a bit rocky.

At this point, however, due to losses, the Granadines were forced to make a morale check which they failed and got a withdraw result. Without a general to persuade them otherwise they withdrew, much to Ferdinand’s relief.

I think I am getting to grips with using the new ‘Castilian light’ army. Having exchanged to base of gendarmes for two of jinites they cannot just smash their way through their opponents as they used to. On the other hand, the light horse can cause considerable problems. In this scenario, the Granadines were forced to try to block the Castilian left-wing jinites from getting to the wagon by deploying three bases of crossbowmen, which meant that these were not available in the centre where their army was crushed. Ferdinand also managed to use his gendarmes and heavy infantry to good effect, administering the coup de grace with the former while the infantry backed them up – in fact, as the picture shows, the final Granadan spear base was practically surrounded when it was destroyed.

Perhaps the Granadines were always up against it in this scenario. They had to keep cohesion while seeing off a mobile enemy. On their left, they more or less succeeded, but not on their right, and they did not manage to get a coordinated defence by infantry and cavalry. A lack of tempo really did not help, granted, but they deployment from column into line also hampered things, as did a general lack of space.


‘Behold your conquering hero comes, Isabella.’

‘Oh, hello Ferdinand.’

‘Put the bed down lads. Carefully. Good. Now, dismiss!’

‘Ferdinand, why were you carried into the room by those poor soldiers?’

‘The Spartans were told to either return carrying their shields or carried on them, my dear. So I thought…’

‘So you returned carried on your bed, rather than carrying it?’

‘Rather a wheeze, don’t you think Issy?’

‘How far did they carry you?’

‘Oh, only from the waiting hall, my dear. I’m not that hard a taskmaster.’

‘Well, I suppose it is appropriate Ferdinand.’


‘You spend most of your time attempting to get young ladies into bed.’

‘I only have eyes for your loveliness, my dear. You know that.’

‘When you talk about this sort of thing, my dear, do you know how I know you are lying?’


‘Your lips are moving, my darling. Still, you did manage to recapture our bed, and so that is a good thing. Now, if you carry it into our chamber, we will investigate how much damage it has incurred during its journeys.’

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