Eric Flint Wiki
Thirty Years' War
Timeline: 1632 series
Date October, 1631
Location Jena
Result NUS victory
New United States Unaffiliated mercenaries

The Battle of Jena Crossroads took place in October 1631. It was part of the fall-out of the Battle of Breitenfeld. A splinter of Count Tilly's forces drove on the town, despite rumors of "sorcerers". They were met and defeated by the nascent military of Grantville.

Lead-up to the Battle[]

A university town, Jena was unwalled and unprotected. It had no military to speak of. When it learned of the impending attack, the government's first consideration was to bribe its attackers. However, it had already depleted its treasury by buying off Tilly in the past. A fight was out of the question: while students took to the streets and signaled their readiness to fight, the town elders realized that they'd be no match for the approaching mercenaries.

Word reached Grantville. That town offered its assistance. Its only price was free trade and an exchange of knowledge. There was a brief debate amongst the town theologians, with some alleging Grantville was Satanic in origins, and should not be dealt with. However, pragmatism won out, and the elders of Jena accepted the bargain.

Grantville's military leaders by-passed the town on their way to meet the mercenaries. Nonetheless, Michael Stearns made certain that Heinrich Schmidt told the people of Jena the names of the various vehicles and weapons they saw on display. The Grantville contingent was comparatively small, and integrated, with men and women both serving. Stearns also made sure that Gretchen Richter was inside Jena during the battle. Richter set about laying the foundation for the Committees of Correspondence.

Jeff Higgins and Larry Wild acted as scouts, relaying enemy troop positions to Stearns and Frank Jackson. Jackson selected a ridge to place part of his forces. The rise in the ridge made the troops invisible to anyone in the valley. Julie Sims was positioned with her sniper's rifle.

The Battle[]

Sims launched the battle, rapidly picking off several mercenaries on horseback. This caused a general paralysis of the advance, and left them vulnerable to encirclement by the Scots cavalry led by Andrew Lennox. When the mercenaries realized only men on horseback were targeted, they dismounted. Stearns ordered an APC to make its presence known. The driver demanded surrender in German. The loud, alien vehicle and the promises of good treatment upon surrender did the trick, and the battle was another rapid victory for Grantville.