Man of War – Excerpt No. 213

Without waiting for the blast, he grabbed another mortar with a shorter fuse. By the time he gripped it in his hands, two blasts registered. Fuses were notoriously inaccurate, but his men might have picked up the wrong one by mistake.

Five seconds later the rest blew, creating off a wall of shrapnel that caught horses in their blast. I can hear horses and men screaming in agony.

The barrage of lobbed mortar rounds served as a signal to resume the heavy mortar strikes. This time both launchers were fired in near synchronicity. The risk was high for his men, if they failed to dampen the barrel well enough, the powder could ignite as they loaded the weapon. If that happens, so be itThey’ll hold their head up high when they meet Saint Peter.

Soldiers firing mortars from a town. Background and clothes appropriate for 16th century France.

Disclaimer: This excerpt from Man of War is currently in development. There may be typos, errors, omissions, inconsistencies and so forth.


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