The Afriborian Campaign is situated in an imaginary world that resembles our own planet and its history (roughly 1874-1914), but events that took place in our world might be set at different dates or in different places in the Afriborian world, thus making any resemblance between Afriboria and real history, -people, -events and -places purely a matter of imagination.

The "AFRIBORIAN HERALD" is the campaign gazette of the Afriborian wargame/roleplaying campaign and reports on the events on the Dark Continent.
The rules used for the engagements are "The Sword and the Flame", translated into Flemish as "KLEINE OORLOGEN" (little wars).

***** THE AFRIBORIAN HERALD **** issue 2

The battle at Copplestone Cabin.
you can view the scenario at "scenario 1"
Once in Pretoria my orders were clear: I had to contact the local administrator ("Burgemeester") and so I did. This kind Dutch gentleman informed me that my business would take me to Willemstad, where the governor ("Gouverneur") of the colony would look at the business proposals of SoCoBra. There was, however, one (MAJOR) problem. For years there had been unrest at the border with Zululand and although the Zulu-raiding parties were (an unpleasant) part of life in the region, more recently a Zulu InDuna had allied himself with a certain Joop Soetemelk, a discontented renegade Boer-leader. The combined forces of the black & white bandits now concentrated on attacking (trade) caravans, hoping their loot would contain gold or diamonds. Therefor it would be foolish to trek as far as Willemstad with only our askaris as armed companions. Since we were guests of the government, the Burgemeester would provide us with a proper escort: a mounted Boer commando and an armoured car. So, when leaving Pretoria, I - who fired my first shot only a couple of weeks ago - found myself in command of a true mini-army!
My first mini-army "en route": the Belgian Askaris in front,
followed by the Boer commando and the armoured car.

On the way to Pretoria, the commander of our Boer escort - Job Den Uyl - proved to be a very pleasant young man. This was only his second patrol as an officer, but he already hoped to be promoted soon! Since he was short of a machinegunner for his armoured car, Michel Véru (the Lt. of our own askaris) offered to act as such, leaving me in direct command of his men.

The countryside was breathtakingly beautiful and when I shared this observation with Job, he informed me that very soon our trip would take us close to the cabin where the famous explorer Dr. Copplestone had lived for a while to concentrate on his hobby of sculpting. During his stay in the cabin, his only contact with the outside world was a trader by the name of Peterson, a guy known for his dislike of the Renaissance. Just when Job was telling me that the cabin would be in view after we passed the next hill, a few Zulus emerged from the bush: no doubt members of the Soetemelk-gang! The young Boer commander asked me to guard the train with my men and the armoured car and started to pursue the fleeing Zulus with his troop (on horseback). They disappeared in the direction of the cabin.

With my mounted local escort disappearing fast around the corner, I became a little worried, but decided to create a defensive formation of some kind, placing my askaris in the front, followed by the A/C and the native bearers and wagons of the train.

This took only a few minutes at which point in time we could hear gunfire in the distance, as well as the warcry of the Zulus. Our Boer friends clearly engaged their enemys, but the "uSuthuuuu!!!!!" we heared was far to loud and powerful to be generated only by the few warriors that were being chased by our commando. I walked up to the armoured car to have a word about this with Michel Véru and we decided to move our troops and bearers forward, so that we would be able to see what was going on.

Job Den Uyl and his mounted Boers in pursuit of the Zulu
party, heading for the Copplestone cabin.
Dark clouds gathering on the horizon: "What I saw the moment we rounded the hill took my breath away..."
The trap springs on Job Den Uyl's commando:
Zulus charging from 3 sides.
The scene that unfolded the moment we rounded the hill took my breath away: in front of us was a body of Zulus charging directly towards us, while on our right Job and his men had dismounted and had formed a crescent-shape line to bring their weapons to bear on another three Zulu-units, who attacked them in their classical "bullhorn-formation". Behind the Zulus we could make out some mounted Boers, undoubtably Soetemelk's rogues. It was cristalclear by now that Den Uyl had walked right into a trap and that the small Zulu party had only been the bait. Being under attack from three sides, the situation for him and his men didn't look to good. But for the moment I had other things to worry about: a fourth group of savage warriors, commanded by a huge Boer on horseback, was advancing fast in my direction. I formed my askaris in line formation and positioned the armoured car directly behind them, with orders to open fire only at my command. As soon as the enemy was close enough to my liking, I gave the order to fire at will. The Zulu charge stopped in its tracks and the horse of the Boer leader dropped dead, with his rider caught beneath it. The Belgian askaris and the armoured car lost no time and turned immediately towards the other part of the battle. We arrived with only minutes (or maybe seconds) to spare: even as we approached, two more of our gallant allies fell under the Zulu assegais. Only Job and two or three of his men were still standing, but many more of the enemy lay dead or severely wounded on the ground.
As soon as the enemy was close enought to my liking,
I gave the order to fire at will.
"We arrived with only minutes to spare..."
The renegade mounted Boers were still to the rear of the Zulus and I heard one of them shouting that their leader (Soetemelk) had been killed. They then turned and spurred their horses away from the battle. With a fresh enemy upon them, the remnants of the impi began to waver and broke within minutes. Victory! but at what a cost: almost our entire mounted escort had been wiped out...
We also made a Boer prisoner: the one leading the Zulu charge against my askaris. We couldn't believe our luck when he proved to be none less than Joop Soetemelk himself! The body of the Zulu InDuna could not be found amongst the dead, so we assumed he had fled the field with the rest of his men. We now had the opportunity of visiting Dr. Copplestone's cabin, in which (much to our surprise) we found a white male and two black German akaris locked up.
The Honourable Bertram (Binky) Kinglsey-Crowne
The white claimed to be a Bertram ("Binky") Kinglsey-Crowne who was a passenger on a small German gunboat, the "Al-Cah-Trash" on his way to Morvalistan. When the crew went ashore for water in the Suid-Kolonie they were attacked by Soetemelk. The German officer and NCO were killed and Binky and the askaris were taken prisoner.

When Binky had completed his tale, I couldn't help exclaiming "my God, sir, what a Dashing Adventure!". This made Binky very nervous and he could only stammer "tell my please that.. I am... NOT O.T. again!!!...". When we asked what "O.T." meant, he just shivered. We figured the poor man must have been in shock. We re-equipped the German askaris and - after feeling a little better - Binky volunteered to take our prisoner back to Pretoria to be judged by the authorities. After the battle, our journey became a very relaxed trip, only overshadowed by the memory of our fallen comrades.

In Willemstad, the Gouverneur was more than happy with our effort and in such a good mood that he signed the trade-agreement with SoCoBra without any remarks or demands from his side at all. Very unusual for a gentleman-trader of Dutch origin indeed! My lord and master in Brazzaville would be very pleased with our first results and I decided to let my men recuperate for a week in this lovely old Dutch colonial town. They had more than deserved it. Job Den Uyl had great prospects for promotion and - since he was born and bred in Willemstad - he insisted on giving me the grand tour of the town, the buildings and most of all the taverns and the famous "Boer Bier" (Boer beer), something as a Belgian I much appreciated.

Job and me (neither of us very sober...) visiting Willemstad.