Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Upon arriving at the Jaeger encampment near Zwilling-Eichen, Heinrich’s instruction truly began. His seargent began the introduction shouting, “Just because you recruits think you can load a musket does not mean you are Jaegers. Untill you recruits can hit more than the broad side of a barn do not get to attached to those green coats. I am Seargent Felsen, from this day forewards you will learn your duties and obey your orders. Jaegers do not waste powder and ball. You must earn those coats and misters you will earn those coats or I will send you either to some line batallion or a garrison company. You will not disgrace that coat, for the Jaegers disgrace is dealth. ”

With that introduction Heinrich and the other recruits were marched to the practice field. Each recruit was given 7 rounds and shown a man sized target set up 180 feet away. “You must hit that target 5 out of 7 times to be allowed to keep that coat. Today we will see just how much work will be needed. Keep in mind that in 7 days you must pass this test for real.” with those words in his ears Heinrich took his first shots as a Jaeger.

Sergeant Felsen Pulled Heinrich out and handed him a musket pointing to the target. Sweat formed on his brow as he carefully loaded and took careful aim. The hammer fell and the flash from the pan was followed by the roar and kick from the musket. As the smoke cleared a cheer rang out from his fellows as he had hit the target dead center of the chest. Sergeant Felsen slapped him on the back and said,” that’s enough for now, best not tempt fate today, next recruit step forward.”

Of the 100 recruits only 30 hit the target on the first day. Heinrich and his fellow recruits began intense instruction on care of their muskets, uniform, and rules. Instruction was followed by marching in full field pack and gear. After miles and miles of marching, lunch awaited them at camp. Once lunch was cleared away, Inspections and instructions began again. Arriving at the practice field for live fire practice was viewed as a joyful release. Following target practice a leisurely 10 mile hike got the recruits appetite up for their supper. Sleep was not hard for any recruit to find and Heinrich found sleep on the hard ground is easy when you are exhausted.

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