Crawling to Death

Rain beats down through overhanging trees into the waters of a swamp
Photo by Joshua J. Cotten on Unsplash

Tonight we played Carolina Death Crawl by Jason Morningstar, which puts us in the role of North Carolina natives who serve in the Union Army marching from the coast to destroy Rocky Mount Depot then back to the sea. Our company consists of Lt. Charles Comfort, Sgt. Lemuel Dunham, Pvt Henry Ross-Tucker, and Bugler Pembroke Shanks. After disgracing ourselves in the raids of Greenville and Tarboro through cowardice, avarice, and cussedness, we’re left behind when General Potter turns his army back east, and must race to catch up before we’re killed by Johnny Reb or strung up as deserters by our beloved Union soldiers.

Cover of Carolina Death Crawl featured a stylized upturned skull
Cover art courtesy of Bully Pulpit Games.

As we make our way, we continue our murderous, destructive ways, killing first the wife then the sisters of a spy who’d earned our ire back in Tarboro, then the tables turn when we encounter three ghostly figures in white who drag Bugler Shanks into the swamps in vengeance. The next day we find a union baby in a basket; we try to place our blue Moses with the Rebel pharaoh, but they insist we help them in their attack upon a bridge where we discover Shanks’ corpse stuffed in the ammunition chest of a limber wagon. Captivated by the vision of a burning church, Sgt. Dunham wanders into the swamps and dies when caught in a bear trap. Finally, after Pvt. Ross-Tucker frees himself from an apocalyptic scene with a whore, a midget, and a hydrophobic hound, Lt. Charles Comfort threatens not to rescue some Union soldiers from drowning in a quarry pit unless they speak on our behalf when we reunite with the army. Once the soldiers are back on solid ground, they kill Comfort, and turning to our Private, pronounced him a good and loyal soldier, and thus did he rejoin General Potter’s forces as they enter New Bern.