Chateau D'If 

  

 

The Musketeers' last huzzah! 

 

 

In the gardens of the Louvre Queen Anne meets with the only four men she can truly trust. Her regency is about to end and she fears for France in the hands of her dissolute son, Louis. There is however an alternative!

A few days later the gallant quartet take lodgings at the Auberge Debarry, from whose upper windows they can catch a distant glimpse of their objective

Chateau D'If, once guardian of Marseilles, now guardian of a single prisoner

Garrisoned by the Regiment Bethune its cannon studded walls are unscaleable

Re-supplied only twice a year the fortress is completely isolated

Fed through a hatch and denied all human contact the prisoner is also confined in a terrible device

Isolated and alone he is known only as 'The Man In the Copper-bottomed Underpants'

No ship may approach, but a jettisoned cask goes unremarked

Reconnaissance however merely confirms the impregnability of the chateau - the only glimmer of hope is that the prisoner is allowed out on the wall-walk once a day to exercise, though even that must be taken in total solitude

Back at the auberge the musketeers set about drowning their sorrows

Only to find themselves accosted by a man in a barrel! Cyrano De Bergerac, famed lover and adventurer, famed failure at both. His latest project is a voyage to the moon! He has already built the 'lune-boat' in the auberge barn but has now run out of funds to train the geese that will pull it. Naturally the inn-keeper has taken his clothes to make sure he doesn't 'fly' off before he pays his bill

Intrigued despite themselves the musketeers accompany De Bergerac to the barn and find themselves looking at the answer to their prayers

So it is that a few days later the freighter 'La Jolie' swoops down towards the fortress' landing stage

A warning shot is fired, to no effect, so the guard is ordered out to repel boarders - only to be hustled back in as the true nature of the threat becomes apparent

La Jolie is carrying a cargo of 'seamstresses' heading home from a clerical convention in Rome they have swung by the fort with its famously lonely, isolated garrison on the off-chance that someone might need their night-shirts repaired!

Meanwhile De Bergerac's lune-boat slides silently down the Mistral they have been waiting for

A ladder is lowered and the prisoner climbs aboard

Mission accomplished the lune-boat heads for the clear blue yonder unseen and unheard as a free man takes a last look in stunned disbelief

Their task accomplished the La Jolie ladies head for the fleet at Toulon, holding themselves in readiness in case the sailors need the lash

Leaving the Regiment Bethune to discover their loss and begin the chore of blame allocation - already chastised for the indiscipline of his men the duty officer is closely interrogated about his parentage

you can find more Bayko Baron at planetdiecast.com - just search 'Bilfred' in the mebers area