As many of you know, this year Dave created a funny story-line featuring himself, Millsy and, the friend of every infantryman, a shovel. In Dave's story the imperious 'Major Docherty' harangues a hapless 'Corporal Millsy', who's only expertise it seems to be in the digging of latrines. As I was working on Dave's 'tribute', it dawned on me that it might be fun to embellish and expand on his story of the doughty Docherty, the maniacal Millsy and the Shovel of Doom. So I converted another figure to accompany the first and wrote a brief flight of fancy, a un conte, which mixes a Moorcock-esque premise with a dash of Black Adder magic-realism.
'C'mon Corporal Docherty, keep up. We're late.'
'Remind me again, Sergeant Millsy, why do I have to lug around this bloody shovel?'
'They were Russians, Millsy, you addled git. We were friends with the French that time, fighting the nasty Russians. Mind you, even Raglan, that ancient one-armed antique, couldn't keep it straight.'
'Right. You're quite right... So, where are we off to this time Sergeant Millsy? It's blasted hot and what in God's name is that infernal racket? It's giving me a headache. It sounds like a bloody train is about to take station over that ridge.
'I don't know what the sound is, but I can tell you that we're marching to fall in with the lads of the 24th. The poor sods have that idiot Chelmsford bossing them about so they need all the help they can get. They're all near that hill over yonder. Damn, what's it called again? It's a odd, foreign-sounding name... Ah yes, I remember, Isandwana.
Now, hurry up...'
Thank you very much for all your help Dave. I hope you like this little vignette and thanks for indulging me for my little departure on your original story. :) Here's to seeing you at Partizan this year!