Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Shotgun Tactics

The sowing is being halted this morning, as the temperature has taken a surprising turn toward freezing off the sensitive bits of every person working in the dirt. We haven't had another frost, but it's close. Jess doesn't want to risk putting anything else in the ground just yet--just in case the thirty seven degree reading outside right now is a harbinger of a deeper cold snap.

So, I find myself with a little extra time to deal with the pile of work that's been slowly accumulating as I've been busy with planting and working in the clinic. One of the things about being Will's assistant is that the papers tend to build up quickly. There are several projects and reports that need multiple sets of eyes on them.

I've been so busy with other things that I had no idea we were sending out groups of people to repeat our performance with the New Breed. Not on the same scale, of course, but no less surprising for that. The brilliant thing about my brother's portable defenses is that you only need three of them as a minimum to set up a working perimeter. Against groups of twenty or thirty New Breed, three of the defensive diamonds and ten solid fighters seem to be plenty.

The fighters are being sent out after receiving word from our scouts. When a small enough group is located, one of three teams will head out and set up, the undead brought to them by the scout team. So far it's working well. It's a bit heavy on manpower and resources, but most of the folks volunteering to do it are using their free time. I can't imagine how tired they must be, working the earth seven hours a day and fighting for another three or four. It's damn impressive.

This has been going on for days. the reports are here for me to see, and I have to say--they look good. Sure, the New Breed will adapt to the tactic eventually or just plain realize it's better for them not to chase down small teams of scouts because of the pointy death waiting for them, but in four days of these kinds of raids, our people have managed to kill another three hundred New Breed here and in surrounding counties.

All of that without the thermite gel bombs. We're keeping the rest of those here at home for now. Eventually we'll make a bunch more of them, but for now our supplies are finite. Not small, by any means, but not easily replaceable in the very short term. We've got some good signs that we'll be able to trade pretty quickly, and there are other varieties of thermite we could make that wouldn't be as effective, but still. Caution is the best way to go.

The end result is that while we'll probably never be able to clear the New Breed out of here, we're keeping their numbers from reaching that critical mass where they feel certain they can defeat us. By hitting them in small, dispersed attacks we're able to maximize damage to them while minimizing risk to us.

Which is awesome, because we need some stability and time to heal, as well as time to build and gather more people here. And if the pile of work waiting for me is any indication (and seeing my brother's handwriting on a lot of it, I'm sure it is) then I have to start looking at ways to make those future plans workable. No time like the present.

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