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Friday 17 May 2024

The Kidnap!!

The Kidnap

Little Snoring from the south west, early summer 1644.

And from the south, the T shaped building on the left is the Dog and Sprocket, a well known Royalist watering hole in this part of the country.

Little Snoring has some affluent townsfolk, made even more affluent by the war.

Main Street, crossed by Weaver street at the far end. Mrs Hutchinson is leading the black pony down Main Street with a barrel of her own, home brewed dark ale, surprisingly called Black Pony Ale.

Sweeping the pavement in this affluent part of the town is the Widow Tuppence.

And a slightly better view of the Dog and Sprocket with it’s Landlady Pearl de Ville standing outside the front door.

You may be forgiven for believing that Pearl is from the continent of Europe, maybe even France but in actual fact she’s a fallen dove from the wild west of America and 200 years out of time but I hope you’ll let that pass.

From the edge of town, hard eyes are fixed on the scene, but more of that later…much later.

You may or may not remember Sir Verney Snapcase’s bold attack on the small Parliamentary garrison in Much Piddling in the Marsh and his crushing defeat. I think it was called the Gunpowder Plot. Of course if you have listened to the Snapcase version you may be under the impression it was a total victory for the forces of the Crown. Such is the power of Spin in the 17C.

Well to celebrate his convincing victory Snapcase decided he should down a pint or two of Old Buggers Bitter in the Dog and Sprocket in the centre of Little Snoring and at the same time renew his acquaintance with Molly Bright his favourite barmaid. Well his favourite barmaid in the Dog and Sprocket, he tended to have a favourite barmaid in each tavern he frequented, and I’m sorry to say, that was a lot of favourites.

His man, Titus Flemming is not invited to the bout of drinking and debauchery that’s taking place in the Inn but he’s happy to let the mad old bugger drink to his hearts content because Titus thinks he might have a chance to bed the Widow Tuppence, although he doesn’t much like the cold, fish eyed stare he’s getting from her daughter Martha

Martha is probably thinking that the small one room hovel they call home only has one bed and so she’ll end up sleeping in the wood pile again. Not a happy thought.

If she knew what was coming round the corner at the end of Main Street she would have cheered up a little, because there were four of the meanest looking Moss Troopers in the Northern Counties marching into town and they looked like trouble.

You might have heard the rumour that trouble follows Snapcase around like a lost dog, well very often rumours are true and these ruffians knew of his dalliance with Molly the Barmaid and intended to bring him a little trouble.

As they rounded the corner, as predicted Martha cheered up. A wicked smile spread across her pinched shrewish little face but she said nothing to indicate their presence.

Titus was still engaging the Widow Tuppence in pleasantries and she was wondering if, bearing in mind there was a war on, then maybe, just maybe she could up her prices and become the Widow Two and a Half Pence.

The Troopers led by James Dalbier move swiftly towards the tavern and are intercepted by Pearl.

You might be thinking “Is Dalbier going to strike a woman?”

“He’s inside” whispers Pearl, “Drunk 5 pints of Black Pony and still on his feet” “No blood mind you, I don’t want blood on the floorboards, it’s a bugger to get the stains out”

So the answer would be no then. Pearl and the Moss Troopers are in cahoots, she’s the brains as well as the beauty of the organisation, and their plan is to kidnap and ransom the raffish Snapcase. Plans, if you’ve read any of my game reports seldom go as expected and this one was no exception.

By a fortuitous piece of dice throwing, a small patrol of Royalist’s rounded the building at the far end of Main Street. They were men under Snapcases command, led by Sergeant Ford who had the unenviable job of escorting him back to camp. Knowing Snapcase well, he was aware that 6 pints of Black Pony was all he could drink and remain standing. He also knew how long it would take to consume this amount of ale and that after 7 pints they would have to carry him back or borrow a wagon, 6 pints and he could generally make it back under his own steam.

The Widow Tuppence gasped when she finally saw the troopers and Titus, looking over his shoulder realised the danger he and Snapcase were in, and promptly ran away.

Later he was adamant that he ran towards the Royalists to warn them and get help, but you and I know better.

The citizens of Little Snoring are a slow lot and no one had really reacted to armed men marching down the Main Street. Dalbier had sent one of his men inside the tavern to grab Snapcase as the rest of them prepared to hold off the Royalist who are now charging towards them.

Dalbier fires both pistols, Edward Ford is hit in the head and goes down, but he misses Samuel Gerard by a hairs bredth, Samuel decides that he needs to run back to cover, obviously worried that Dalbier has a third pistol up his sleeve.

Little Martha looks on with glee, this is much better than sleeping in the wood pile.

Samuel checks the priming in his pistol as he considers how he’s going to make this retreat sound like a clever tactical manoeuvre.

Pearl looks on in dismay, how are they going to get the blood stains off the brand new cobbled roadway, the Moss Troopers don’t give a damn. Two of them are down, cut badly by the Mortuary Swords wielded by Titus and his mate Edmund. Titus has also been wounded in the sword play with the troopers but stays on his feet, as Edmund battles it out with Dalbier.

Dalbier is wounded and falls to the ground, and then so does Titus leaving Edmund as the last man standing.

Edmund enters the tavern to rescue Snapcase.

Sir Verney Snapcase staggers out of the Dog and Sprocket bellowing “What the hell is going on here. Can’t a man have a drink in peace.” Seeing Samuel Gerard approaching from his place of sanctuary he eyes him malevolently and demands to know who all these bleeding men are and where’s the re-supply of Black Pony.

Samuel immediately responds, “It’s here Sir, I’ve been guarding it with my life Sir. Mrs Hutchinson has the new barrel on the wagon behind me Sir. "Good man " responds Snapcase.

He’ll go far will Sam Gerard.

If you’re still here, the fight in the tavern went something like this. The Trooper had pulled his pistol on Sir Verney but Verney Snapcase was too drunk to notice. Edmund Mansfield entered the tavern and the Trooper had 3 choices, put a gun to Snapcases head and try and bluff his way out, surrender, or shoot Edmund.

He chose to shoot Edmund but such is life, he missed and then just had his pistol as a weapon against Edmunds sword. This didn’t go well for either of them, the trooper is dead and Edmund is lying on the floor with a cracked skull.

Pearl is livid….think of the blood stains.

After a few restorative brandies and his 6th pint of Black Pony, Snapcase smiles at Samuel Gerard, “Well done lad, if that ale had fallen into the wrong hands it would have been a disaster” “Give Titus a hand up, he’s not too badly wounded and I promised Red Molly the barmaid we’d help out with a little problem they have in Little Snoring” “It’ll be right up your street, a bold brave fellow like yourself.”

Remember the hard eyes fixed on the town? No! Well you should have been paying more attention because that’s Sir Verney Snapcases next adventure.



  1. What a great romp through Little Snoring John, as you say plans didn't go accordingly, but the next adventure may stop old Snapcase, if he hasn't had time to sober up before then ! LOL

    1. Thanks Dave, Snapcase is a bit of a force of nature once he gets going.

  2. Cracking stuff!
    Isn't there some saying about "God looks after drunks and fools"? LOL

  3. The spinning of another great yarn. Lots of casualties - anyone would think there's a war on.
    Thanks for telling [and showing] he story.

    1. Cheers Stephen, I'm in Transylvania and just visited an amazing open air museum full of old Transylvanian buildings. I expect to be Vampiring next.😄