With the crackle of gunfire still echoing around the fjord the Von Roeder makes smoke and executes what it hopes to be a speedy exit to meet up with friendly forces further down the fjord. Note: The many wargame uses of a poker chip. Green equals part of a smoke screen, red a visibility limit, simple but it was working well enough on the night. Back to the Von Roeder. Racing around the lee of the island she gains protection from two RN destroyers (HMS Hunter and HMS Havoc) but the Von Roeder (top middle trailing green "smoke" poker chits) is blissfully unaware that she is on a collision course with the rest of the RN 2nd Destroyer Flotilla (bottom right).
"Enemy sighted" and HMS Hotspur engages and trades minor hits with the startled Von Roeder. HMS Hardy soon joins in the battle as the Von Roeder and HMS Hotspur enter into a close (or rather effective) range torpedo duel in the fjord. Both captains decide to unload 'all' their fish and it's a case of who guesses right under the GQ2 basic torpedo rules, but I like it that way. A sophisticated bottle top marks the torpedo launch points. Both sides write down their predictions and wait nervously.
The Von Roder bears to port (top middle), but Captain (D) guessed straight ahead therefore MISS, while Von (J) picked correct, straight ahead and HMS Hotspur obliged, though at rather a high speed. [Note: Only now do I see an umpire omission, that they could have spread their fish to different sectors - my fault, but it was the same mistake for all sides - I honestly knew these rules once!] The result being a Torpedo Attack on HMS Hotspur. The dice roll, the players wait with baited breath. Then follows then is a catastrophic explosion (two in fact) on the brave and valiant little HMS Hotspur, as she simply disintegrates [Umpire: SUNK result twice].
The euphoria is short lived on the Von Roeder as she is then subjected to a withering fire from HMS Hardy and HMS Hostile seeking a bloody vengence for the Hostspur. For the first time the Von Roeders normally crack aim (aka Von(J)'s deadly dice roll) deserts her, Lady Luck is such a cruel girl. The Von Roeder is now reduced to a single armament and hull box, limping lowly along, truly "peppered". Von (J)'s previously humorous comment about sticking close to shore to run aground if in trouble looks a rather good pragmatic option now.
Is it time for the RN to rethink its plans? Do they press on or break off?