496 replies and 6 files omitted.
I thought it would show both rolls. What is the command for two separate dice?
Inline dice is the only thing that is possible now
You have to type out [ 1 d 20 ]
No hospital is seen. There is, however, a street sign: Gusty Avenue
"Not far now. If you want to take a break, I'm sure we can rest once we get out of the wind."
Getting out of the wind is determined most of all by buildings. While some avenues have wind that blow straight through them, those going the opposite direction have buildings blocking the wind. There are some ponies outside, and some vehicles, but it's rather few, almost surprisingly so. The area becomes more dense, with some shops on the buildings. Brick architecture dominates, with many buildings three or four or more stories in height.
With no real direction for Spark to follow, he heads to the nearest street turn off to get out of the wind.
Some ponies look over at this, stand for a moment, and then look away
Waabishki tries to set the coffin down, followed by the doctor.
"We could go further." Then when it is set down
"We will go further once everypony's strength has returned. It wouldn't be wise to tire to the point of dropping him."
From within the coffin, Miskobag:
"Are we there?"
She turns to Spark
"How far are we?"
"I don't have a map. Perhaps the locals can point it out."
"Perhaps, if your friendship gets you as far as you claim."
Spark nods and looks for a pony to ask.
A grey earth pony in a fur-edged coat and wearing a trapper hat is availableRoll diplomacy Charisma check
He looks over at the procession strangely, and turns his head away at an angle
"I suppose you're new to this city. The hospital is about six blocks down until you get to Red Trout, then go until you get to Tarruga, take a right, then you'll know when you see it on the left."
Spark relays the information to his friends.
But the pony proceeds onwards, away from the group.
"I think I could find it from Tarruga."
"So how far away is it?"
"Let us get moving."
"Just a little further now. We are practically there."
All four ponies pick it back up again
Roll 2 D20's
Spark proceeds down Gusty Avenue just fine, and the same down Red Trout.
Spark comes to his first questionable area after intersecting Tarruga. Spark can see that there is a simple barricade with an armored car behind it forming a checkpoint, and at least three changeling drones manning it. The checkpoint is actually in a different direction from the hospital, at least according to the directions, but it's an unsettling sight behind them
There seem to be remarks from the drones, but nothing that can't be ignored.
Spark and friends(?) proceed down the road. As the pony on the streets told them there is a large building of brick and windows at least four stories tall on the left, with a road leading up to what seems to be an entrance
"Yes. That's it."
I have a feeling that I am missing out on a lot because of the dice.
Spark heads towards the building.
If by "missing out on," you mean being stopped by military police, receiving wrong directions, or getting lost, then you're right.
Don't worry. Dumb luck alone can't get Spark through the next section
Spark and crew arrive at the entrance of the hospital. A couple ponies outside, walking by, stop and stare at the procession
"Well, now we need to find a means to make a wolf in a coffin needing medical attention not raise any alarm. Any chance you can work some inter-profession charm, doctor?"
"Uh..." He smiles awkwardly
"It's going to be hard to explain a coffin going through the front entrance."
"Think we can unload our friend without any more eyes on us and perhaps use a medical stretcher to bring him in?"
"That... well I don't know where to unload him, but I can definitely say that he'll attract much less attention on a stretcher."
Spark looks towards the side of the building. Is it more hidden from view of ponies?
It definitely looks like there could be some areas. There is a loading dock, and much further back, there is a walled in little building with large smoke stacks that, in anycase, has bricks around it. There is also a small area recessed into the ground with stairs leading to it that evidently goes down to an entrance to a basement, or some kind of subterranean level. All of these require the creatures to move in front of windows that are above and could theoretically see it, although the basement entrance is closest, and the wall is furthest away. The wall has the most cover for the actual activity
He motions the wolves towards the wall.
It's another long movement of several hundred feet across grass and the procession would look very odd to any outsider, but the creatures make it there. There are three sides, absent actually entering
Spark looks for anypony that might be spying on their plan.
A pony crosses the street, but it's simple enough to wait them out. It's impossible to say what is seen from windows, as these are black tinted.
The wall on the left side from the road, and nearest the ponies, is the most visible to windows. The wall next to the road is most visible from the road.
It is worth the risk of exposing what somepony might see in the window as chances are, it is a sick pony that can't do much to alert anypony to what is happening.
Spark goes perhaps behind the wall, or in the segment in front of them.
Waabiski, then the doctor, and then Makade set the coffin down. It's Miskobag himself who opens the lid
"Are we here? Why are still outside?"
"What if this had been a search! Play dead!"
"Not yet. But we are going to move you into.... what did you call it?"
"After travelling in that, heh, I'd love a chance to stretch"
"They will accept us in without question if we put him on the stretcher. Don't worry."
Now Spark must obtain a stretcher
A small argument breaks out over the rifle. Makade tries to pick it up
"Where are you going to hide that? You can't be seen with that."
"Why did you bring that?"
"I'm not going anywhere unarmed, especially far from home"
"Just put it away"
"Well it can't stay here
"The rifle can stay in the coffin because nopony will move a coffin. We will be right back to collect it. If you must, you may stand guard at the coffin."
Spark heads inside the hospital and asks for a stretcher.
Makade bears his teeth, not liking this answer, but Spark is on his way.
"A stretcher... What for? Where are you from?"
"I'm just trying to help my friend. He has a lot of swelling and can't move."
>>141620[1d20+3 = 19]
Not sure why it is a bluff, but ok.
Spark needs to persuade her to give a pony outside of the organization a stretcher.
Anyways, the grey earth pony mare tells Spark,
"Oh. Well if it's urgent, we have some in that room there. On the left, down the hall."
Spark obtains the stretcher.
Spark takes the stretcher out and brings it to the creatures
Miskobag actually is
standing at the moment, but he seems fine to move into the stretcher when it comes
"I can walk... But stairs... that may be a challenge."
Makade places the rifle next to Miskobag - or tries to - trying to hide it under his fur. This action displeases Miskobag and the doctor.
"We won't get very far with the rifle there. It is best if you hold onto it Makade. Just don't get spotted with it."
"And how will I hide it?" He asks
"It might be hard to hide, but the coffin has worked thus far. If you can think of a reason we can convince the ponies to let us in with it, then we can bring it along."
"The coffin? I don't know what would make them let you bring that inside."
"Hmm... maybe there is a box of medical supplies?"
"If you could get something inside the hospital that could help us hide a long rifle..." He says
"Well... a coat... or... maybe a box of the right shape?"
Silver lets out a sigh.
"Alright. Go back and tell others that we have wounded, I will stay here and watch changeling."
Silver remains in watch over the creature, as the private lopes away
Silver returns to watching this same changeling he helped earlier. He knocks the rifle away, just in case. He points at the changeling's bandaged abdomen.
"It is ironic. I pull bullet out of you..."
He points to the fresh bullet hole in him, still hurting like hell and still making it painful to breathe.
"...you put bullet it me."
The creature maintains its eyes on Silver. It pulls its lips even further back, and it tries to scoot backwards towards the wall.
He chuckles lightly, and shakes his head.
"I know you can not understand me, but when you said you were going to find other group of changelings, I thought you would go back to front."
The creature blinks, with diagonal eyelids, and finds the wall with its back.
Silver scratches his chin, trying to think of ways to communicate with this changeling but failing. He instead decides to whistle a tune while he watches the drone and waits for some ponies to get back and take his wounded compatriots away.
A pony Silver can quickly recognize as Amber Grain walks in,
He rubs the area around his new gunshot wound, wincing.
"I need to stop nearly dying. I have more than filled my quota for today."
"Good to see you're still alive sir, and indeed I think we've all filled our quota. Is this the last of the Changeling positions?"
"I would hope. It seemed like there was more than there aught to be here, but we still need to check grain elevator to see if there are still changelings there."
He gets up from his previously seated position, with no small amount of effort.
"Nng...even if there are, I do not plan on sending our ponies in there. I have different, better plan."
"Even a single Changeling on Equestrian soil is more than there ought to be."
Amber looks down at Silver's wound
"The Grain Elevator is compromised? What do you have in mind?"
It's a nasty wound, rifle-caliber and punching straight through his chest. It's a wonder how he's still alive, let alone conscious.
"Using our mortar and at least one of those AT guns to blast grain elevator to rubble, if changeling position is still there."
He stares down at it
"Well, that's definitely the safest option. We've lost too many ponies today."
He nods, and lets out a little wince as he takes a breath.
"That we did. I do not plan on losing any more of our ponies. Have you heard anything from Mild Mill or Hazelred yet? I saw that shell hit their position."
"Yes. They came up and met with us outside the facility. It was a bit of a tense moment, with Mills forgetting the password, but we sorted it out."
Silver sighs in relief.
"Спасибо Селестии. I was worried when I saw top of church tower just disappear..."
He looks down at the wounded but stabilized soldiers.
"I do not suppose you brought other ponies? These three need to be brought someplace safe, and I have changeling prisoner I need to escort."
He silently adds in "...again." under his breath.
"No, they hit the steeple above him. When that happened, he figured they had his location and ran out of there along with Hazelred, who I'm told, was almost dragged. Maybe the Changelings were just firing at random and got darn lucky, because they didn't shoot that position again. Still, his shots caused the Changelings to think they were being flanked, and to keep a portion of their soldiers out of the battle until it was already too late."
He too, looks at these wounded ponies.
"Well, we're trying to get a truck working to take the wounded back to town hall. I'm not entirely sure how that's going. Privates Marsh Grass and Silent Spring made an almost heroic effort to take a wounded pony back to the town hall on their own already."
Then he looks down to the drone
"Why don't you just shoot it?"
He looks at the drone as well.
"Despite fact that he is reason I have very big hole in me, I am only pony he shot, and I am still alive. And despite that changelings probably would not show such mercy...it would leave bad taste in my mouth to shoot enemy who has already surrendered."
"Are you sure? I think I would have shot him already... But you are the Platoon Commander now, Silver Sword."
He chuckles, though there's remorse to it.
"I hope not for long, and that Lieutenant makes speedy recovery. It also means you are now my second-in-command."
An event that was omitted, but should have happened, was the door opposite Silver's last position being opened, the corpse of a drone being pushed aside in the process, and the pink pegasus pony walking through.>>141653
"Indeed it does." He says, smiling for just a moment, before the smile is removed. "Let us pray for the swift recovery of all. Come now, let us go see if they've got it working."
Silver nods, turns to the drone, and gives him an order to stand up and start following him. He turns to Amber immediately afterwards.
"Follow drone so he does not get any funny ideas."
"Alright, let's get this roach upright"
He moves closer in, and using a rifle, makes a waving motion to get up, and then pokes him with a bayonet just to emphasize the point.
The ponies go outside, to hear the sound of a diesel engine and to see an attempt at loading the wounded into the back of the truck.
Silver sees the private from earlier, and the pink pegasus corporal. They have with them the one daffodil colored private who helped translate before. He keeps his limbs tight together.
"Ah, good, you are here. I need to talk with our 'friend' again."
While he says this, he looks to where he left the other two wounded changelings, already having an idea what might have happened to them in his absense.
The first drone, the one Silver set against the truck, is still there, propped up and notably without any bayonet wounds. The second one, the one with the bandage around the neck, is missing from its position.
Silver quickly returns to the matter at hoof, and looks at the daffodil-colored stallion.
"I am sorry about dragging you all way out here, but I would appreciate it if you would translate for me again."
His eyes dart around at the scene before him
Silver notices this, and decides to lead the drone and the pony away from the scene of carnage, so they can have a quieter conversation without eavesdroppers.
"When you said you were going to find other group of changelings, I thought you would be going back to changeling side of front."
The private speaks to the drone, and then Silver gets the reply:
"This was much closer."
"Yes. And also our next target, after retaking telephone office. I thought that would be obvious."
He points to the hole in his chest.
"You know, I am rather cross about this."
He maintains the awkward smile for another several seconds, until that slowly fades to a more angry, determined expression.
Then he starts yelling. The private doesn't have any difficulty in translating it word for word, almost as it is spoken, and his soft, almost intimidated voice contrasts strongly with the creature in front of him.
"The other drones in my squad - my whole platoon - died so that our brothers in the mountains may live. I ran away. I surrendered. If I had set the grenade off, it could have helped the night attacks. Their deaths may have meant something. Now, my brothers will die in greater numbers because I was weak."
Silver doesn't falter in the face of the drone's anger, but inside the unicorn knows it's justified.
"I will not belittle you, your brothers, and what you have accomplished. You are fighting for your country and your people, just as we are. And, from that perspective, you and your brothers have already done much here to help changeling war effort."
There is a pause before the translator starts to speak, whether because the words are more difficult, or because he needs a moment to process it.
The drone must need time as well, because he is silenced, at least for the immediate time being, by Silver's words in reply.
"I will be honest with you, you and your brothers have inflicted large casualties against us, particularly among our officers and squad commanders. While there are not many dead, there are many wounded, with many unable to continue fighting for some time. It will be hard to defend if your forces successfully push us back to Vale. And with how you successfully held up our communications, there is little chance for our lines to reinforce in time for your assault."
This is relayed, and takes him a moment to reply. His voice is nearly emotionless:
"Maybe then... I can be satisfied."
Silver nods. He actually smiles at the changeling a little, and salutes him.
"You and your brothers have fought valiantly in face of such adversity, and have achieved great success for Hives. There is no dishonor in that. I salute you, as worthy adversary."
There is no matching smile. But there is a sharp nod.
"So I die now?"
Silver shakes his head.
"Unless you want to, no. I will cut you deal. Even with you shooting me, I have not forgotten how you returned our missing ponies to us. Life, for life. Return home to Changeling Lands and live to fight another day, I will not stop you."
“Know of any boxes about the right shape that a hospital would have around?”
"Well... One of those tubes for maps and posters would fit it. Or at least it would if there were no scope... I don't know. There must be something in there somewhere."
"Just be sure to actually leave
Vale this time. I can not guarantee you will get so lucky as to encounter me rather than another pony."
"Uh, Okay." He says. His mouth hangs open
Silver stares at him for a few seconds, then tilts his head in confusion when he doesn't leave.
"Is something wrong?"
The translator raises a hoof, and for the first time, raises his voice
"Flieg, du narr!"
The drone, right in front of Silver, transforms in a brilliant flash of yellow-green into a grey pegasus, and then jumps up and takes flight towards the twilight.
Silver watches the drone slowly disappear into the distance.
"That got him to go. Strange. He almost looked my son, if I just got passing glance at him."
The private turns his golden eyes to Silver as he speaks, but has no comment.
"Well...we should return to others, see how they are doing. It would be really nice to sit down somewhere also..."
He starts holding the wound on his chest again, letting out a small groan of pain and discomfort.
It's definitely not the sort of thing that can be left untreated. The private does not say anything.
As they slowly trot back, he speaks to the private.
"You are quiet. What is wrong?"
"Are you sure? It does not seem like nothing."
“Well, until we find one, the rifle is going to have to stay here with the coffin.”
He looks down, and then back up
"Uh, I am fine."
Presumably, Silver should arrive at wherever he as walking to>>141687
Spark's call on the next action
Spark helps Miskobag on the stretcher and carries him inside.
Indeed he does. He looks at what the current situation is back by the trucks.
Slighted, Makade remains outside
Spark and the doctor are able to place Miskobag on the stretcher, and carry him inside>>141690
If by "trucks" is meant the two that were shot to hell earlier, they are still there, and still in poor shape.
The one truck in front of the building, nearer the road, is being loaded with wounded ponies.
Silver decides to trot over to the truck being loaded, still holding his wound, and ask,
"Need any help?"
What can Spark see inside?
"Not at the moment. Could have used some help a few minutes ago, but now, we're about to head out."
"Sorry about that, soldier. Is there room for one more? I think I may need this wound looked at."
"Sure. Just sit on the end there."
Silver nods. As he does so, he calls Amber Grain over.
"Sergeant Amber Grain?"
Ammber Grain walks over, being right next to the truck, and perhaps about to sit in the passenger seat.
"Ah, you are here. After we drop wounded off at Town Hall, I want you to organize our attack on changeling position at grain elevator. You remember my plan for how to deal with them?"
"Blow them up from a distance" He says
"Precisely. Specifics of attack I leave to your discretion. Once I have this looked at..."
He winces as he pats the wound in his chest lightly.
"...I will join you."
"Yes Sir." He says
Silver is able to find an area to sit on the end of the truck. Inside, lying down are Saltlick, who is shivering - at least that is a sign of life - Bricsbuck, Sleetfall - who fell in the final attack - and several other ponies, especially those who had been outside. The truck goes on its way, moving forward, and drives to the Town Hall. The distance is less than a mile, and sure could have been done by cart, if only those were available in size and number.
Amber Grain gets out, as well as another pony in the back along with Silver, and they try to get the wounded out and inside
Spark, entering inside, sees a relatively normal reception room, with a two story entrance, hallways to each side, a few potted plants, a reception counter on the left, and a hallway straight forward.
Silver gets out as well, and assists in bringing wounded despite his injury and the discomfort it causes.
Indeed there is a bit of discomfort, but a stretcher is available, and the ponies are able to take the wounded, one by one, inside the town hall, to lay them out. Firm Heart, looking even more tired than before, looks at the ponies as they are layed out.
Silver gives Firm Heart a similarly tired smile during one of the drop offs.
"You should see other guys."
There is already an additional wounded pony there
Firm Heart looks down at Silver's wound.
Then he says
"This is just too many casualties, and they are too badly wounded. It's really fortunate that there was a medical clinic in town, and medical supplies here, because otherwise we'd be out of plasma and other supplies."
"Again. And yes, we are quite fortunate."
Silver looks at the additional pony.
"When did he get here?"
"A couple ponies brought him in here earlier. Carried him the whole way. Good thing. He's terribly wounded."
"Right, I remember now. I am glad he got back here successfully."
Silver continues to help bring wounded in, if any are left. Once that is done, he sits down in the makeshift infirmiry.
Silver sits down in the room. Some of the other wounded are laying unconscious. Some are shivering or near convulsions. And some are conscious, able to sit up. Firm Heart goes from pony to pony, mostly starting with plasma and morphine. A pair of ponies, who seem to be among those from the 332nd, help in parts of this process. Silver is not addressed yet.
Deciding he can't just sit there and do nothing, Silver goes to Firm Heart.
"I may not have formal training or education, but over course of my career I have learned how to treat many different kinds of combat wounds. If there is anything you need assistance with, I am more than willing and able to help."
"Why don't you try giving morphine, and inserting IVs?" He says
Silver nods, and starts giving the wounded such treatments. He particularly starts with those shivering or nearing convulsions, as those seem to be the most in need.
Silver is able to insert these. It helps that most are barely conscious. One of the female ponies comes down, and helps distribute blankets. The plasma seems to help with the shivering.
"We are going to need to send many of these, or maybe most, to Wald."
"Yes...we will be short-hooved for some time. We did however recover logistics truck from changelings, so we will be able to send them to Wald swiftly."
He looks at the wounded Brisbuck.
"It also could have been much worse for us..."
"I don't know what the Changelings look like"
He injects some substance into an IV
"But I doubt its better."
"Mass casualties on Changeling side. I think only three changelings remained alive by time we took wounded here."
He stops, and looks over to Silver
"Damn. That is extensive."
After a minute or so, he is able to get to Silver
"Alright, let's take a look at you."
He comes closer, and inspects Silver's wound
"Wow. He got you good, didn't he?"
"Point blank with rifle. I think it goes without saying...it is not pleasant to breathe."
"I bet. Wow. Okay, let's get you some plasma. We'll need blood too, but we don't have that. Some more morphine, and some tonic."
"Hopefully this is last time I nearly die today."
"Hopefully. The sun has set. Time for the night..."
He injects Silver with something, and tries to spread some sort of cream, or something over the wound, which is rather painful
He groans in pain.
"One more thing we must do before Vale is secure...then we can free those ponies from cocoons..."
"What is that?" He asks
"But whatever you do, get in contact with Command, and with the 23rd, and get some ambulances to get this ponies out of here."
"That I will. First is clearing last changeling holdout. Grain elevator. I do not plan on sending ponies in, rather I will just bring it down around its defenders using mortar and captured AT gun."
"Could the grain elevator cut off the road?" He asks
"It is near Old Mecc, I believe."
I suppose Spark would ask for Miskobag to be taken in for examination.
"Oh, you have a patient? What's his name?"
"Mhmm. Does he have an ID with him?"
"We didn't take it with us. He is swelling is getting worse. We are so worried. Can you please help us?"
"I see" She looks up. It's a white unicorn mare, with wheat colored mane. "Let me say and... By Celestia, it's a wolf!"
She looks down, and then back, and goes over to the phone
"Uh, one moment please..."
The doctor comes forward
"Hello. I did my residency here."
The mare answers,
"Oh, did you?"
"Yes, and could this wolf here see Doctor Miley? I have a rapport with him"
"I've been told that he should see a specialist on Wolf anatomy. Doctor Hill Air is our available specialist."
"Oh, well, yes. Is Dr. Bellows still in charge here."
"Sort of. He's section head."
"I'd like to talk to him"
"Uh, I'll see if he's available..."
Spark wonders what will happen next.
The mare answers:
"Well... At least you can go see Dr. Hill Air. Bellows will be available in fifteen or so minutes. You can go to Room 345. On the third floor, of course."
The doctor mentions to Spark
"I hope I can use some of my connections to have this done with as few questions as possible, and maybe with as many resources as possible."
"Thanks. I'll make it up to you."
The ponies are now free to move around the hospital... well, freeish
, and may either go to room 345, or elsewhere
Might as well see room 345, get Miskobag comfortable, and then explore.
"I know where that is! Just go up the stairs right here, and it's down this central hallway"
The ponies go up the stairs, which isn't entirely pleasant. Miskobag has his head up, looking around. Then they go down the hallway, and find rooms 350 and greater.
"Or.. maybe it was on the far hallway."
Then the creatures go over to the far hallway, and nearer the end, find room 345.
"Okay, I think the doctor will be hear shortly. If not, I'll go find him."
It's a relatively mundane room with an examination table, a small steel table over nearby, as well as a couple cabinets, including those above a counter and those under. Miskobag makes his way on top of the examination table, and Waabishki sits down next to him. Hill Air is not there yet, of course.
Spark goes over to Miskobag.
"How is it?"
Miskobag presses his paws down into the foam underneath
"It's... fluffier than I expected. And it's warm here."
"That's good. Be sure to rest now."
"I've been trapped in a coffin for hours now. I'll be fine to be up for now." He presses down again.
"But this is much more comfortable"
Waabishki looks worried, sitting and looking up at Miskobag
""That may be an issue then..." he says
"Hence why we are going to remove that issue."
Firm heart pulls out this new bullet -- a much harder task that those before, given how deep it penetrates - gives Silver a new tonic, patches up the wound, and lets Silver go.
"It's not really enough, but it is the best I can do for now" He says
"You have done more than many could have. Thank you, Firm Heart."
Silver gets up from the table.
And Silver is up, ready to go about. In that time, more ponies have arrived, including the other wounded, and the translator private, who is impressed into assisting
"Alright. Next time I return, it will be after our successful liberation of Vale."
Silver smiles back, and leaves, heading to join up with Amber Grain and the ponies preparing to attack.
Over the clouds that hang in the far west is the last pale orange of twilight. The sky above is already bright and starry, with a dark blue tint, and more stars than can be counted. The waning gibbous moon makes its presence known, looming over a portion of the opposite horizon. Few lights are on in the town. The town hall, the post office, a couple dinners and homes have lights their inhabitants never turned off, but these are not enough to break the darkness of night, and seem to be even less than this same town would have under more normal circumstances. It is below freezing, and what wind blows down the valley is unwelcoming, especially as it brings the sounds of distant thunder.
Silver's platoon - and it is indeed now Silver's
platoon - has been reduced in strength by about 19 from its original strength of 47, with heavy losses among both rifleponies and officers. However, the platoon still has all four of its machine guns and the mortar. The truck, no longer being used to transport casualties, is available to pull either of the two anti-tank canons - one off which is already hooked up. The available ponies are assembled in the area of town hall, with faces like Amber Grain, private Cornflake, the Black colt machine gunner of B squad, the cream colored pegasus of B squad, and the pink pegasus corporal of A squad, and even Hazerlred... But not Brisbuck, Saltlick, Sleetfall, or Frost Bark.
They are at the ready
Silver turns his face up to Luna's night, feeling the bitter cold of the air around him. He then looks at the gathered ponies.
"Alright Ponies. This is it. One final effort is all that remains. These changelings have caused many casualties among us, and have injured or even killed many good ponies. Now is when it ends. We will go to their final hideout and bring it down on top of them. We will hardly give them chance to cause more pain and suffering. We do this, and Vale will finally be free!"
There are cheers, though perhaps not as many as before, when they sought to take the dairy plant
"Kick them out" is one of the remarks heard from the stallions
Even where the enthusiasm is not overflowing, there is no doubt of the looks of hardened determination on their faces reflected in the dim street light outside town hall. Silver's ponies are ready
Silver heads for the truck, stopping by Amber Grain along the way.
"Excellent work organizing everything."
"Thank you" He says
The ponies go southwards through town, with the truck in the lead, until they advanced to not far out from the grain elevator. It's ever so slightly further away from the town, but still within rifle range of the roofs. It's flanked by hills, but these are slightly further away, and none are as obviously tall as the one north of town. Silver can see the rail line, and two trucks in front of the grain elevator. There are three lights on on the grain elevator, as before, which show off corrugated steel, steel silos, and concrete. The buildings are massive by the standards of Vale, at least 40 feet or more in height and also long, though they are narrow in construction. Not much is illuminated besides the lights, and the lights make it harder for the eyes to adjust to the night.
Can the bottom of the grain elevator be seen, at least compared to the background?
With the aid of the lights, yes
"Alright. Let us get set up. Our mortar and AT gun will be focus of attack, mortar will bombard from above while AT gun takes out bottom section. Our rifles and MGs will watch for changrlings trying to flee from building."
"Alright, let's set up the positions. Where do you want the rifleponies and the machine guns, and how many of them are there, if you know?"
The truck is not particularly silent, and also has headlights that need to be specifically turned off.
The truck backs the anti-tank gun into position, assuming Silver doesn't want it to be horse-drawn into position
What kinds of formations or features of the landscape besides the river are around that can be used?
Like the dairy plant, there is a hill beyond the grain elevator, though this one is a bit lower and lacking the well defined ridge lines. Past the grain elevator the valley is slightly wider, with plowed fields with irrigation berms that define the end of the fields, and trees at points. There is a house or two much further away, but not much in the way of structures outside the town.
Is the hill on their end of the grain elevator, or on the other end?
I'm not sure what you mean.
The geography from left to right/north to south is,
Hill, railway, grain elevator, roadway, river, empty space (likely a fallow field) hill.
The valley runs east to west, with the town west of the grain elevator, and fields east of it. The grain elevator itself is "longer than it is wide," with the four silos stretched along by the railway.
Like, is the hill between the ponies and the grain elevator, or is the grain elevator between the ponies and the hill?
The hill is to the side. The grain elevator would occupy a 90 degree intersection between the hill and the ponies.
Silver points out the hill.
"It may be advantagous to pull gun to that hill. Vary our angle of approach from our angle of fire."
"Heh. No way in hell we're getting this anti-tank gun up that hill, at least not without a lot of effort from four or five of our colts pulling it. Way too steep and rocky to drive a two and a half town truck. There's a reason the Changelings want this valley so bad, and it's because it's the only place in a hundred miles you can pull a heavy gun, a tank, or a freight truck between the Unicorn ranges."
"Hmm. In that case, right here is as good spot to attack from as any."
"Makes sense. But what about the machine guns and rifles?"
How distant is the hill, exactly?