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Screening the clocks

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Lars Kjaer

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Captains log, 28th of January 1765 port of Coquibacoa aboard the 118 gun "Skrien"

 

The war with the russians are heating up. Word has come in that the russians are preparing a full scale invasion of the port of Coquibacoa and the surrounding areas.

The Danish-Norwegian Privateers has been ordered to the port in order to disrupt and possibly prevent a landing of troops in the city and the Baltische-Flote has taken the responsibility of defending the port itself. The naval ressources in the area has for a long time been stretched thin, busy as the danish-norwegian navy has been to protect trade in and around the port of Christiansted after the russians captured Guyama only a few hours away from the danish-norwegian governors residence.

The Danish-norwegian navy did however manage to field a larger squadron of first rates that took up positions a few nautical miles outside of Coquibacoa in a westernly direction. The lookout soon spotted sails in the horizon, a smaller dutch endymion class frigate, hardly anything to be concerned about. Not long after the lookout yelled "More sails, 1,2,3,7 - 23 sails! East - one point North!". This was a dutch battlefleet come presumably to support their russian allies.

We convened on the "Skrien" for a quick warcouncil, should we engage the dutch fleet or wait for the promised swedish reinforcements that had left Santa Marta? We decided that the enemy was too strong to allow near the port of Coquibacoa, our battlefleet of seven 1st rates and a single 3rd rate was a lot smaller than the dutch contingent, the dutch however had fewer large vessels and by the looks of their handling was probably of sturdy but outdated designs. The decision to engage the enemy fleet was taken at combat ensued as the 2nd bell was sounded throughout the fleet.

The dutch captains fought with all their bravery but immediately after the engagement started the dutch losses were climbing. Were it not for a fireship that we hadn't noticed we would've left the battle mostly unscathed such is the might of our first rates! Alas! the fireship demasted my "Skrien" and Captain McKnights "Jomfruen". The dutch wasn't long in taking advantage of the crippled "Jomfruen" and pounded her stern relentlessly, screams could be heard from her as her crew was being raked to pieces and not long after a dutch captain engaged her in bloody hand to hand fighting. The boarding was soon over, as the crew of the crippled first rate were demoralised, decimated and the entire ship was in a bloody state of chaos. I acted with all speed, managed to get the boarding ship sinking and after some quick manouvering, with limited sails, boarded the lost "Jomfruen". The boarding was quickly done as the dutch captain had little time to prepare a defence and my crew was veterans at taking over enemy prizes. We managed to free Captain McKnight and the rest of his crew from the holds in the ship, but after a brief discussion it was decided to sink the "Jomfruen" as she was probably unsalvable in her current state.

Elsewhere the battle was raging strong, the smaller dutch ships were shooting remorselessly but in general with very little effect. Captains Mikkel "0TimeLefT", Staunberg, Denisik, Wiesewolfe, Sir.Sigurd and DarkJoker hammered the dutch fleet into submission and as I was clearing the sinking "Jomfruen" I heard the heavy thumps of the danish forty-two pounders and the splintering woods of masts, ships and bones all around me. The dutch fleet were trying to disengage and we were already mopping up the remaining ships. A relatively large contingent of smaller dutch ships managed to escape the battering but all in all we were extremely satisfied with the engagement. The dutch lost 15 ships ranging from the recently captured "Jomfruen" to several 2nd rates of the Bucentaure class to fourth and fifth rated vessels of varying sizes. The danish-norwegian losses amounted to a single first rate for which I will be put on court martial the day after the next to explain my actions. I do believe however that it will be a swift procedure since the demands of the battle dictated she be floundered rather than letting her fall as a prize to the dutch navy.

 

The battle was portrayed by a painter in the port:

https://imgur.com/a/FqZDC

 

The Baltische-Flote managed to hold the port and now we're celebrating the battle. The crews are drinking their hearths out and the brave swedish squadron, sorely missed outside of Coquibacoa, arrived with a tale of fortune in battle. Apparently they had intercepted a russian fleet of one first rate, seven second rates and a smaller vessel, all either prizes or sunk in the ensuing battle. We are gratefull that these russian ships didn't make it to the port as they could've turned the tides against us. And. We're even more gratefull for the dominican prostitutes and cuban tobacco the swedes brought with them. All we need to be real cosy right now is basically some haitian rum!

 

Captain Lars Kjaer, commander of the high sea fleet

Port of Coquibacoa, aboard his majestys ship "Skrien", 118 guns, 1100 crew compliment

28th of January 1765

 

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