Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Admiral Hopstadt faces Board of Inquiry

After his triumphant return to Trieste, Admiral Hopstadt looked forward to the relative tranquility of his carriage ride to the Admiralty. It would allow him time to review his logs and prepare his presentation. Certainly no one else could have achieved such an audacious breakout, arduous voyage, and achieve complete victory without as much as the loss of one man. Yes, Admiral Hopstadt was a man of destiny!

As Admiral Hopstadt entered the massive Admiralty building, he was greeted by a very nervous captain who escorted him to the Imperial Sea Lord’s personal office. The cool reception was in sharp contrast to the roaring crowds he has experienced on the grand wharf in Trieste. What was going on here?

When Admiral Hopstadt entered the ornate office, the Imperial Sea Lord seemed distracted by a document on his desk. The awkward moment was extended as the Imperial Sea Lord completely ignore his presence. However, before he could react, he was waved forward. My dear Hopstadt there seems to be some inconsistencies in your official report. First there is the matter of hazarding your squadron in a tempest, but far more disturbing is your failure to resolve the matter of the dreaded Driss Khal-al-Waw Dey. There will be a Board of Inquiry tomorrow at 0800 in the Admiralty Chambers; I suggest you bring legal counsel. THAT IS ALL, YOU ARE DISMISSED!

Admiral Hopstadt was livid. His first instinct was to resign is commission and seek employment with a sovereign who would value his skill, courage, and tenacity. However, this affront to his honor had to be addressed. Who among these faceless bureaucrats could have led a squadron at sea? How dare they now, from the safety of their offices, question his decisions?

7 comments:

Martin said...

Sounds like Admiral Hopstadt is about to find out why sharks never attack lawyers....professional courtesy. If the poor, old, honest sailor needs legal aid, the Markgraaf highly recommends the firm of Dewey, Cheatem, and Howe, located in Amsterdam. The Markgraaf has them on retainer, and they have come in very handy resolving some maritime trade disputes that Raubenstadt has been involved with.

Herzog Ignaz said...

An Imperial officer must not only survive on the battlefield, but must also learn to survive the more perilous drawing rooms, salons and coffeehouses of Vienna. Close quarter actions in the Hofkriegsrat and Hofkammer invariably are more ferocious and merciless than any action against the Turk or Protestant princes.

A J Matthews said...

Hmm! Admiral Hopstadt could not have achieved such high rank without being aware of the minefield that is the Imperial Court. I wish him luck, for a brave man such as he is invariably the subject of jealousy from lesser men.

Oldsmoblogger said...

So the admiral is about to rue the Dey?

thank you, thank you, I'm here all week -- try the veal, and tip your waitress generously, and your neighbor's cow sneakily

Frankfurter said...

Sounds like time for the captains to rally round ...
??

MurdocK said...

Yes so that those 'captains' can figure out the right angle with which to 'thrust' home!

The senior officers ranks in the Habsburg courts must have been the ultimate back-stabbing place and I am surprised that the 'Admiral' was not 'pre-informed' as soon as his pennant was sighted on the horizon.

He must have made many enemies among the sea-dogs for them not to have passed along the pending do-doo that the admiral was about to trod in...

Herzog Ignaz said...

Seriously, though, how many captains does one supposed served in the largely hypothetical Habsburg navy?

Like Kissinger said about academic politics: the infighting is especially vicious because the stakes are so low.