What a fascinating book this would make.
First, Mom gets transported to Australia on the First Fleet, for what,
one wonders? Could be stealing a loaf of bread, or some other equally
Alternate plot line: she's "framed" by the evil sadistic lord of her
village, because she won't "play ball" with him...
Alternate plot line: her one true love kills the evil sadistic lord,
and is hung for it. She, in despair, tries to bring to light evil
sadistic lord's nefarious antics, and instead, is shipped off to
Australia by the evil lord's buddy, the corrupt JP...
Alternate plot line: she's actually a master criminal, who knows how
to wiggle her way out of most of the consequences of her crimes and
how to "work the system" - she should have been hung, but instead,
seduced the magistrate and got off easy...
Chapter Two ----
Being beautiful & in distress, she attracts the attention of the
humanitarian medical officer. An affair as the ships cruise half-way
across the world...
Alternate plot line: Master Criminal Mom quickly identifies the doc as
a weak-willed pushover, maneuvers herself in to his cabin, and gets
preferential treatment for the rest of the voyage...
Chapter Three -----
The son grows up in the penal colony, living half in each world - the
convicts, and the guards/gentry. What happens to Mom and the doc?
Hmmm... I wanna know!
Alternate plot line: Master Criminal Mom blackmails doc mercilessly.
Before he finally commits suicide by jumping off Ayers Rock, he
springs for the cash to send son to Blighty... Mom quickly shifts her
attention to the Governor, who has the influence etc to get son in to
Woolwich. But tragedy strikes: Mom dies of alcohol poisoning after a
wild weekend with Governor. Fortunately, it's too late to cancel the
Chapter Four -----
Then, it's back to Blighty, where he gets in to Woolwich. A new and
bizarre world for him. But he makes good, and gets promotions to
Alternate plot line: this guy makes Flashman look like an angel. He's
tougher and smarter than the rest of the pampered sons of the gentry,
and quickly gets on top of the situation. Soon, he is virtually
Chapter Five ------
Then, the whole craziness that was the Waterloo campaign. I gather he
didn't serve anywhere else prior to this? Officers get lost,
detachments flounder around, Captains get arrested, defences that
should be built aren't, all is confusion...
Alternate plot line: our man isn't about to die for King and Country.
So he is the source of all the confusion, the 'getting lost', the
running away, etc...
Chapter Six ----
Then, panic as the Ogre launches his assault! Allies fly, so do the
sappers... all except Lieutenant White, perhaps? (hey, this is a
novel - he can swan around the battlefield, perhaps doing a "Sharpe" -
always in the key spot at the relevant time, just by dumb luck, as he
tries his best to lend a hand...)
Alternate plot line: he's trying to get to a place of relative safety,
but keeps accidentally heading where the action is about to explode...
Chapter Seven -----
What happens after Waterloo? He was only 42 when he died, back in
Australia. Why did he leave the Army? Were those RE personnel at
Waterloo blackballed by the rest of the army? Did he manage to steal
enough in Paris to retire in comfort? Did he have the love of his
life waiting for him back at Botany Bay?
All in all, it would make a great tale. Several great tales,
--- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, JGIL1812@... wrote:
> Indeed, Lt. A. D. White was one of the 13 RE officers and part of
> Colonel James Carmicheal Smyth detachment of Royal Engineers with
Wellington [snip] Lt White was the most junior of
> all the RE's present. [snip]Their Captain was immediately arrested
and the Company was
> ordered back to Waterloo. Eventually this company fled in panic
> that the French were close at hand shortly after the start of the
> the Belgians and Hanoverian retired from the field.
> Lt. Col. Carmicheal Smyth considered this a stain upon the honour of
> Corps and refused to recommend any of the officers attached to
> Honours or Advantages because of this. [snip]