The Yeomen of England
(Posleen in England)
When the Galactic Federation makes contact with humanity, warning of the danger from the Posleen, every nation on Earth is thrown back on its own resources. For the United Kingdom of Great Britain – facing the first invasion for years – every resource must be tapped to defeat the Posleen. As the social structure of Britain warps under the preparation for war, every part of British society prepares for the war.
As the Posleen land, rampaging over England and heading for Scotland, only the courage of the Yeomen of England stands between the British people and the Posleen stew pots…
Ordinal Author’s Note And Dedication
As a book set largely in England and written by a British author, The Yeomen of England uses British sayings and expressions, most of which have been footnoted for the benefit of American readers. If there is any confusion, please don’t hesitate to enquire.
Dedicated to John Ringo and Tom Kratman, for their work on the Posleen Universe and other stories.
New Author’s Note
The Legacy of the Aldenata series, otherwise known as the Posleen Universe, was created by John Ringo in his novel A Hymn Before Battle and its sequels, which focused on the Posleen invasion of the United States. Tom Kratman added Watch on the Rhine (set in Germany), Yellow Eyes (set in Panama) and The Tuloriad (set some years after the original series). John Ringo recently returned to this series with Eye of the Storm, which brought Mike O’Neal back from fighting the Posleen and put him up against a far more dangerous threat...
With John’s kind permission, I wrote a novel set in Britain during the Posleen invasion and another set in the Middle East. Exactly how canonical they are is open to interpretation. The details differ from the Posleen RPG for the very good reason that I hadn’t heard of it when I was plotting out the stories.
I do want to rewrite the British story, at least, so all comments and suggestions would be warmly welcomed.
No profit is being made from this.
Christopher Nuttall, 2012
The classroom was less noisy than a watcher might have expected, but when their favourite teacher was reading to them, silence was a requirement. Even the noisy students quietened; their reading hour was special to all of them. The boys listened; the girls listened, as Mrs Crandall read the storybook to them.
“No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water1,” she read.
The story, The War of the Worlds, had been a request. One of the children had read an excerpt from the book in a storybook of adventures, and he had asked for the full story. Mrs Crandall, who was a firm believer in encouraging children to develop their interests in reading, had agreed; the story would be their latest classroom read. They would do projects on it…they would draw pictures of the Martians, the boys competing for the honour of drawing the most disgusting image of the Martians feeding; the girls writing romantic stories of love and ponies under the Martian heel. In Mrs Crandall’s world, boys were boys and girls were girls…already, she was planning a field trip to Woking and…
“And strangest of all is it to hold my wife's hand again, and to think that I have counted her, and that she has counted me, among the dead,” she concluded, finishing the story after several weeks. The rapt attention didn’t fade, even after three weeks of reading the story. The walls of the classroom had images of Martians, painting in gruesome red and gold.
Tom Anderson held up his hand. “Mrs, did that ever happen?” He asked. “Did London ever get ruined?”
Mrs Crandall smiled. Children – young children – were often incapable of distinguishing between fact and fiction; only last week she’d been asked if the Space Shuttle could travel faster than light. She believed in answering their questions; the more they knew, the more they would be able to use for their own development.
“No, Tom,” she said. “Britain has never been invaded…”
“What about William the Conqueror?” Polly Perks asked. She was a small slight girl with two long ponytails. The boys enjoyed pulling them from time to time; she was a know-it-all who should have been called Matilda. “He invaded Britain…”
“England,” Mrs Crandall said firmly. “William the Conqueror had a claim to the throne. Since then…”
She described a vast history, trying to catch their imagination. The Dutch and the endless wars during Cromwell’s time, allowing herself to feel a flicker of naughtiness at the time, as discussing Cromwell wasn’t done2. The Spanish Amanda and Francis Drake. And finally…Hitler, and the German invasion that never was.
“If they had succeeded, we would no longer live in a green and pleasant land,” she concluded. “Why not write a story about it?”
The class groaned, but they were good-natured groans, except for Tom’s. “Mrs, what would happen in the future, if Britain was invaded?”
Mrs Crandall paused. Young Tom’s father was known to be a profound hater of the French, a man who had been wounded during the Battle of Oran. On the other hand, the Government was very keen that schools promote European unity; the Soviet Union remained a threat and that didn’t seem as if it would go away anything soon.
“Britain will not be invaded in the future,” Mrs Crandall said finally. “We have nuclear missiles and no power on Earth could invade us without being struck by nuclear weapons.”
Tom’s face twisted, his mind trying to grasp concepts normally alien to a young child. “But…what if someone did?” He said finally. “Could someone not manage to launch an invasion anyway?”
Mrs Crandall snorted. “No one has successfully invaded Britain and no one ever will,” she said, and changed the subject.
Tom Anderson was not reassured. Growing up in the seventies, while his peers were discovering the joys of the ecological movement and the opposite sex, he worried endlessly about a possible invasion. Writing stories only developed his fears further; it surprised no one that the Falklands War made him ultra-patriotic and concerned about the constant reduction in Britain’s military. It surprised no one that he joined the British Army, nor that he would be rapidly promoted after seeing service in the Gulf War.
And yet, the senior personnel didn’t know what to do with him. On the one hand, he was the officer who drew up plans for all eventualities, but on the other hand his…blunt expressions on the subject of British defence earned him enemies. Politicians from all political parties respected his ability to explain the military world – a closed book to many of them – but they resented his single-mindedness on the subject. It was the 1990s; war was out, it would never happen again. The international community would punish aggressors…had that not been proven by the Gulf War?
As the 1990s grew to a close, few men even considered the possibilities of a global war, nor did they look to the stars. There had been no trace of any life existing outside the Earth; the world assumed that peace was the constant throughout the universe. Britain was part of NATO, a global organisation dedicated to keeping a powerful military alliance in being. Britain would remain safe under the NATO wing, backed up by the might of American military power, and that state of affairs would continue forever.
Or so they thought…