Recent Events: 10 Sept ’39

8 Sept:Polish defenders at Westerplatte surrendered
9 Sept: Battle of the Bzura begins.
9 Sept: British Expeditionary Forces (BEF) began landing in France.
10 Sept: Canada declared war on Germany.

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Op Order: Operation Mosquito

Location: RAF Greenham Common, Berkshire, England Date: 07 Sept 1939, 0400Z You find yourself in a uncomfortably stuffy conference room wiping the sleep from your eyes and wondering what game Section D was up to now.  With the German invasion of Poland, and the subsequent British and French declarations of war, being on the cover of newspapers for days now, your stomach tightens as you realize this is probably not about another training exercise for your fledgling Group 17. Major Lawrence Grand enters the room, along with his support staff, and he moves up to the lectern and silently stares at your group for several long seconds.  A staff officer hands you a briefing packet as the Major begins to speak. "Gentlemen, you are being mobilized immediately on a mission of utmost importance.  You will be operating behind enemy lines, undercover and without recognition by this or any allied government.  You will be on your own so do not allow yourselves to be caught alive. " The Major pauses briefly to let that statement sink in before continuing. "Now, let's open those packets and get down to how this mission will proceed." You break the seal on the packet and open it to find the following:  

T  O  P    S  E  C  R  E  T    O  V  E  R  S  E  E  R

        I.        Situation 

A.   Enemy Forces

1.    Enemy Situation: Elements of the 207th Infantry Division, 1st Frontier Guard Corps along with SS Heimwehr Danzig (approx. 1500 men) occupying the city of Danzig and surrounding area as of Sept1st, 1939. Troops are in high morale, well equipped and supplied and are welcomed by a heavily German populace in Danzig.  In naval support is the SMS Schleswig-Holstein, a Deutschland-class battleship, with a contingent of approx. 200 Marines.

2.    Enemy's Most Probable Course Of Action: Consolidate their positions within Poland, primarily through establishing garrisons, curfews, checkpoints, and identifying possible resistance elements and enforcing martial law. Eradicate any remaining Polish resistance, primarily surrounding Warsaw and eliminate any partisan efforts. As this is a large city that is predominately German, there will be a strong incentive for the military to resume normal business operations as quickly as possible.

B.   Friendly Forces

1.    In the vicinity of Danzig, most friendly forces have been eliminated with the exception of Polish forces holding out in the Westerplatte fortress.  These forces will most likely be eliminated prior to Group 17’s arrival in the area.

 C.    Weather

1.    Maritime Climate with scattered clouds and a 30% chance of rain for week Sept 7th-16th, Average High 67, Low 49.

2.    Sunrise/Sunset: 04:40Z/16:55Z (Local time in Danzig is UTC+1)

     II.        Mission

Group 17 of Section D will leave for Danzig NLT 072200 Sept. and seek out resistance agent within the city. Once located, agent will direct Group 17 to an undisclosed location for an important historical artifact that must be safeguarded and brought back to MI6 HQ. 

   III.        Execution 

B.    Concept of the Operation: Group 17 infiltrates Danzig via fishing trawler Haaken, meet up with agent in Danzig, locate artifact, then exfiltrate via Haaken NLT 132330 Sept. 

1.    Scheme of Maneuver

      1. Depart from RAF Tempsford 072200Z Sept. on Special Operations Avro Anson.
      2. Arrive at unmarked field on Bornholm (55.21313N, 14.8254E) at approx 080500Z Sept.
      3. Depart on Danish fishing trawler Haaken at port of Rønne, Bornholm NLT 081900Z Sept.
      4. Arrive at the Free City of Danzig at approx. 092200Z Sept.
      5. Seek out operative known as Thor at St. Marienkirche (St. Mary's Cathedral), Danzig. Operative will be in the church every day from 0600-0830Z until 140830Z Sept. Password and challenge given under command and signal.
      6. Follow operative to unidentified location within Poland within 100km of Danzig.
      7. Retrieve historical artifact and manuscript from location. Protection of, and exfiltration with, artifact is primary mission. Protection of operative is secondary at this point, but make all due effort to retrieve operative as well.
      8. Fishing trawler Haaken will wait in Danzig until 132330 Sept.
      9. If rendezvous cannot be made with Haaken, another fishing trawler, the Jette, will dock in Danzig at approximately 161500 Sept.
   IV.        Administration/Logistics 

A.   Administration - In the event Danzig cannot be reached for exfiltration, Group 17 must find their own way back to friendly forces. Under no circumstances can the artifact or manuscript fall into enemy hands.

B.   Logistics - Individuals can request equipment appropriate for mission from Quartermaster.  As this is a clandestine operation in a military occupied city, weapons and armament are limited to easily concealable and disposable items.

    V.        Command/Signal 

A.   Signal

    1. Primary: Challenge - Motley, Password – Crew
    2. Secondary: Challenge - Curry, Password – Chutney
    3. Running Number Combination: 11
    4. Operative Challenge (in German): Do you know where the closest Post Office is? Password: "It is to the East, near the Theater." Note: The Post Office is actually to the South on the other side of the Rathaus (town hall).

B.   Command

    1. Succession of Command: By rank per SOP
T  O  P    S  E  C  R  E  T    O  V  E  R  S  E  E  R  
Major Grand continues, "Well, that pretty much sums it up, we have some maps and photos, largely taken from postcards, of Danzig in the packet for you.  Now, I'm sure some of you have questions, let's here them."
Maps and Visual Aids

18 comments to Op Order: Operation Mosquito

  • Fenrik Lars "Röcke" Tidsskrift Lars Tidsskrift

    Yes sir, I have a few questions:
    1. How do we identify Thor? I saw no pictures in the packet.
    2. How heavy and how large is the artifact?
    3. Will Thor have transport for the artifact, or will we need to procure some?
    4. Will the artifact be defended? if so, do we have any info on size and disposition?
    5. if the opportunity presents itself to extract the artifact and manuscript in some other manner than the fishing trawlers in Danzig, are we authorized to use such opportunities to bring them back to England?
    6. What is our TO&E for this mission? I didn’t find any in the packet.
    7. The timeline seems a bit tight to safely make contact, travel 100km, retrieve the artifact & manuscript, travel another 100km back, load up & ship out all in four days. Can we push out the depart days of the fishing trawlers?
    8. The German will surely have passage control & roadblocks in effect by now on the roads into and out of Danzig. Do we have correct papers to use? Or will Thor be providing them?

    OOC: I have to assume that I already know who on the team knows German or Danish??

  • Bob Gamemaster

    Major Grand addresses your questions one by one.

    1. How do we identify Thor? I saw no pictures in the packet.
    Answer: We have no pictures of Thor. We know he is an older man approx 40-50 of Prussian nationality. On his right ring finger he will be wearing a ring embossed with the Shield of the Teutonic Knights (A simple black cross on a white shield) with the words Ordo domus Sanctæ Mariæ Theutonicorum Hierosolymitanorum (Order of the House of St. Mary of the Germans in Jerusalem) inscribed on the inner portion of the ring. You also have the operative challenge/passphrase to verify his identity.

    2. How heavy and how large is the artifact?
    Answer: It will weigh approximately 10-12 lbs and fit within an 18″ square box.

    3. Will Thor have transport for the artifact, or will we need to procure some?
    Answer: Thor is supposed to have transportation to the site of the artifact. Exfiltration is up to Group 17.

    4. Will the artifact be defended? if so, do we have any info on size and disposition?
    Answer: The artifact is not defended, but well hidden in a secure location. Be advised that German troops are also searching for it, although our intelligence believes they are focusing their efforts in East Prussia.

    5. if the opportunity presents itself to extract the artifact and manuscript in some other manner than the fishing trawlers in Danzig, are we authorized to use such opportunities to bring them back to England?
    Answer: Yes, although keeping a low profile is preferred. We would rather that Jerry keep wasting resources searching for something that we have already taken.

    6. What is our TO&E for this mission? I didn’t find any in the packet.
    Answer: TO&E will be forthcoming, Thor may be able to supplement your weapons load once you are on location. OOC: Need to know everyone’s roles first. Note: Its a clandestine operation early in the war, so expect pistols, grenades and some explosives at most. You need to have things you can easily hide on your person.

    7. The timeline seems a bit tight to safely make contact, travel 100km, retrieve the artifact & manuscript, travel another 100km back, load up & ship out all in four days. Can we push out the depart days of the fishing trawlers?
    Answer: Unfortunately, no. Any longer and the trawler will begin drawing unwanted attention to itself. If, after learning the general whereabouts of the artifact, you believe the distance is too far to travel in the time assigned, speak with Captain Østergaard on board the Haaken. It is possible they may be able to leave immediately, secure another load of fish, and return to Danzig to retrieve you. This would require a minimum of 5-7 days assuming some luck with fishing.

    8. The German will surely have passage control & roadblocks in effect by now on the roads into and out of Danzig. Do we have correct papers to use? Or will Thor be providing them?
    Answer: You will have paperwork showing you are fishermen working out of Danzig. Thor will be working to secure the safest route possible and any paperwork required to get you there.

    OOC: I have to assume that I already know who on the team knows German or Danish??
    Answer: For purposes of this conversation, yes, although it will be an unknown until everyone gets their characters finalized. Polish would also be handy.

  • Fenrik Lars "Röcke" Tidsskrift Lars Tidsskrift

    OOC: Is English going to count as one of our three languages?? Or is it just assumed??

    • Bob Gamemaster

      OOC: You get your native language, an additional language at d10 and a third at d6 for free. You can up the die on the additional two languages at regular costs. It’s up to you where English falls. For you, you might take Norwegian as your Native, German as your d10 (and spend a point to raise it to d12) and English at d6 (or leave German at d10 and up English to d8). Or you could take the College Boy edge to pump up your Knowledge skills.

  • Seven mike

    Andrzej: Sir, what information do we have about this artifact and manuscript? Some artifacts require… extra handling precautions.

    OOC: Does my occult knowledge tell me anything about the Teutonic Order and the likely artifact that would be helpful?

    • Bob Gamemaster

      Andrzej, the artifact is called Der Heilige Flamme des Törzburg, which, as you know, roughly translates as The Holy Flame of Törzburg. Legend has it that it allows the wielder to see the “truth of things,” whatever that may mean. We will not repeat the name or nature of the artifact outside of the this room…ever. We have been reliably informed that the artifact itself is fairly robust and resistant to “active” travelling provided it stays within its container. The manuscript, being centuries old, is much less durable. You will be given a protective wrapping and case to help preserve the manuscript against damage and an oilskin wrapping for the artifact to protect against water damage.

      If you require more information regarding the Teutonic Knights, we have some reference material here that you may consult.

      OOC: Mike, If you want, you (or I) can set it so your name displays as Andrzej. Also, the link provides all known data about the Teutonic Order (obviously information post 1939 is not usable by your character). More known for their political power than anything else as they once ruled much of the Baltic. Currently their order has been banned by Hitler.

      While your occult knowledge doesn’t give you any glimpse into the artifact or the Teutonic Order, you do recall that Törzburg is the German name for the city of Bran in Romania. More particularly, it sits in that part of Romania that is known as Transylvania.

  • Bob Gamemaster

    OOC: Mike, I gave you an avatar that seemed to fit your ‘ugly’ hindrance. Unfortunately, you don’t get the full effect of the poor man’s crooked teeth at this size. hehehe

    I can change it to whatever you would like, or you can. If you go into your user profile you can change your display name and avatar. If you changed your first name and last name to your characters name, you could choose that as your display name, like Lars did.

  • Seven Seven

    OOC: I think I fixed the profile to show my nickname and I’ll leave the ugly picture

  • Fenrik Lars "Röcke" Tidsskrift Fenrik Lars "Röcke" Tidsskrift

    Since our cover is fisherman, and since we will be operating very close to my old home town there in northern Germany, do I have permission to grow a beard sir? I would hate to be recognized by an old school buddy during the mission!

  • Scope Scope

    I feel decidedly uncomfortable with the TO&E as indicated. Will there be no provision for long guns after insertion? Are we allowed to “acquire” tools sufficient to the task?

    • Bob Gamemaster

      Major Grand thinks for a few moments…

      “Scope, we can provide a 7mm Mauser hunting rifle that looks, to all apparent purposes, like a well used hunting rifle, but which has been tuned to be a solid snipers weapon that can be disassembled easily and has well hidden mounts for a scope. On the Haaken, it can be stowed as one of the ship’s weapons, thereby removing any risk if the boat is searched. It is common for ships to have a pistol, rifle or two for any number of reasons. How you get it off the ship, and whether you should or not, is up to you. As is whether to acquire weapons on site, if you feel the need.”

      OOC: Use Kar98 stats on page 54 of Savage Worlds Rulebook but add Snapfire penalty (-2 while moving) and you can add a scope (+2 at medium and long range if not moving).

  • Lucky Lucky

    Major Grand, Sir, shall we expect harbour patrols as well?

    …also, from the picture of the airplane, we will be flying into Poland, yes?

  • Fenrik Lars "Röcke" Tidsskrift Fenrik Lars "Röcke" Tidsskrift

    Lucky, Read your brief….we fly into Denmark, take the fishing boat down to Danzig. Major, I’m guessing for the return hop the boat is taking us straight back to England? Or are we doing the reverse route back?

  • Calvin "Knuckles" Hayward Garrett

    Transylvania? Ain’t dat where Dracula come from? I seen it in da picture show. Maybe I otter bring some wooden stakes and some holy water? I gotta cross from the priests at school when I was a kid, I’m gonna wear dat fer sure.

    (Character under construction but will probably originate as a street tough from Brooklyn raised in a Jesuit orphanage)

  • Lucky Lucky

    Apologies, sir. I guess I was a bit…distracted.

  • Ackley "Suez" Smythe Suez

    Dracula’s quite dead, Garrett, I assure you. Saw it in a cinema in Piccadilly.

    Am I correct in assuming that we’re to be completely out of communication during the mission, sir? Does this Thor fellow have any means to get a message out of the country? Is he connected with the larger Polish resistance, assuming there is such a group?

    • Major Grand Major Grand

      Suez, You are correct. The fishing trawler cannot afford to have an illegal radio on in Danzig harbour and you will not have the space to covertly carry one with you. You will have frequencies, a crypto book, and call-signs with you, however, in case you have need and can “borrow” a radio from Jerry.

      At this time, the Polish military is reeling from the German attack and focusing on defending Warsaw. The resistance, what there is of it, is scattered, isolated and unorganized. Thor does have access to resources though that will surely become part of the resistance and he can help you in that regard.

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