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 03rd January, 1810; Make One's Own Entertainment, Winter quarters
Martin Darling
 Posted: Jan 13 2016, 03:46 PM
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Guardsman; Officer's batman
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Group: British Infantry
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It was rare to be given an evening to himself. Perhaps it was down to the division being in winter quarters. Perhaps it was Captain Blackwood attempting to be kind. Perhaps it was simply something that all batmen enjoyed at one time or another. Martin could not be sure. All he was certain of was that he was at loose ends until the next morning. He could do some sewing since the captain needed a warmer cloak than the one he presently had, or he could clean his musket for the third time in a week. Or he could take himself to one of the wine shops in the town and pass the evening in warmth. Doing that meant a complete lack of quiet and solitude but to be warm was a greater prize than either of those.

So it was that Martin nestled himself into a corner of a reasonably full wine shop and allowed the dark-eyed serving girl to press a mug of wine on him. His Portuguese was very weak but he could manage simple conversations like this. With a drink thus purchased, he was left alone. There were more demanded customers for the poor lass to devote attention to. Guardsmen, Riflemen, and cheerful Irishmen of the 27th were all present, with the odd flash of blue of an artilleryman amid the red and green jackets.

Most of the noise was of conversation and laughter, since who wanted to be anything other than merry in a place such as this? Martin sipped absently at his wine and managed not to grimace. He was not much of a drinking man but he could usually appreciate a good wine. This particular brew was a little too rough on the tongue even for his liking. It was a shame. From what he heard, the Portuguese were competent vintners. Or maybe that was the Spanish. Then again, he knew that soldiers were seldom fussy about what they drank, so long as they were able to drink.

Able to drink and able to snipe at each other. He heard a couple voices raise abruptly over the din. In a place where men could easily find themselves in liquor, Martin supposed it was no great surprise that tempers would fray and spark. He caught sight of a sleeve with red cuffs - a man of the 33rd - as one soldier waved his arms in either emphasis or warning. It was impossible for him to tell from across the room. Perhaps he should slip out of here before a fight broke out, since that could only be inevitable in such circumstances.

Then, over even the raised voices, somebody cried, "Full house!" and there were cheers. Ah. Martin allowed himself to relax slightly. It was only a game of cards. There was decidedly less harm in that. He took another swallow of wine and wondered if his limited Portuguese was up to the task of asking for a different drink. This wine really was dreadful.

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Jem Yards
 Posted: Jan 20 2016, 03:54 PM
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Trooper, 15th Hussars
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The door opened widely shedding a soft light on the sounds of laughter, chatter, and warmth within. This shop had come by way of recommendation. Whether that was of the quality of drink or the quality of the servers, Jem did not know; but he had dutifully followed his comrades down darkened cobbled alleys. So many different regiments were represented in the room, it looked like an army review. Only louder and more enjoyable certainly.

"This is a happy place." Jem said quickly, removing his shako.

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Jem Yards - Trooper, 3 Squadron, 15th Hussars
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Keiju
 Posted: Jan 30 2016, 05:10 PM
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"Aye," said Corporal Tunney, his gaze sliding critically over the cheerful, chattering, drunken mishmash of soldiery. Happy was good though. Happy meant safety. All he wanted was an event-free night's drinking.

He spied a table at which a lone Guardsman sat and felt a grin forming. Well now. "There's room over there," he added and pointed.

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Jem Yards
 Posted: Feb 4 2016, 09:31 PM
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Jem's eyes followed Tulley's finger and saw the soldier at the table. What sort of a man would be in a place like this by himself? The army was about family. The most basic bond an army man had was that of the man next to him.

"Poor sod." Jem said quietly.

The group of cavalrymen pushed quickly into the room lest the Green Jackets steal the space.

"Hello, friend. This place is like Shorncliffe Camp, can we share your table?"

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Jem Yards - Trooper, 3 Squadron, 15th Hussars
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Martin Darling
 Posted: Mar 4 2016, 06:38 PM
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Drinking the wine was too unpleasant for him to continue doing. Gazing absently at the wine, on the other hand, was harmless to both his palate and his purse. The mood of drunken good humour in the tavern seemed to wrap Martin up in its warmth and for once he felt it might be possible to relax. To honestly be at ease even with so many other soldiers around.

The illusion of safety evaporated in an instant when a group of cavalrymen materialised at his table, with one of them inviting himself and his mates to Martin's table. He blinked, sitting back against his chairback and trying to contain his surprise at being addressed - hell, at being interrupted, basically.

"Er - y-y-yes," he managed, his manners taking over in the absence of any stronger reaction. "O-O-Of c-course."

As if by magic, the serving girl came bustling over, all smiles at the sight of more customers. She babbled at them in Portuguese and if Martin had been less befuddled, he might have understood her questions.

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Jem Yards
 Posted: Mar 14 2016, 02:03 PM
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Trooper, 15th Hussars
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Jem shifted his sword away and gratefully sat down. Unfortunately, he knew no Portuguese so just stared blankly at the serving girl. Maybe Tunney or their new mess mate here knew a word or two....?

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Jem Yards - Trooper, 3 Squadron, 15th Hussars
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Keiju
 Posted: Mar 23 2016, 06:16 PM
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The serving girl waited for a reply but when one was not forthcoming, she jabbed her finger at the mug in the redcoat's hands. "Vinho," she said, drawing the word out as if doing so would help these thickheaded Englishmen understand her.

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Martin Darling - Private, 1/2nd Foot Guards (Blackwood's batman)
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Joe Newbury - Rifleman, 3rd Company, 5/60th (Royal American) Rifles
Thomas Newcombe - Lieutenant, 1/50th Foot
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