Volume 3 Chapter 1-4: War Council

 


「Can we stop this already? Let’s hurry and get to the main point. What…did the new chief just gather us to brag about his accomplishments? Ahh wow wow! Not even just that he’s a doctor too~. He’s also so strong~ how enviable~ I’m sure such a man like Cyril wouldn’t have the same worries as us commoners.」

The traitor Raffa had been frowning for a short while as he vented his sarcasm.

Roleau looked about to snap back at him, but I put up my hand and stopped him.

「That was a report of our current situation. I wanted to inform you that we have the ability to increase our money and food supplies more easily. Then using that increase we can strengthen Erucy. We can increase our military might.」

That’s right, if even their food wasn’t guaranteed the next day there would be no one who would follow me into battle.

Now that we finally had enough food to satisfy our needs our power would increase.

「Chief, what will we do specifically?」
「Up until now crossbow and formation practice has only been once every three days for three hours in the morning.」

Before the battle the 100 fighters had trained every day, but once the impending threat abated they had lost some motivation. The frequency had dropped to once every three days.

In truth that was most likely the limit when they still needed to do their farming.

「With just that they will not become strong warriors. They must cease farmwork and train daily in case of emergency. They will be career soldiers. That is a concept I intend on introducing to Erucy.」
「Oi, wait…you mean when everyone is working hard in the fields they’ll just be training to fight the Empire without knowing if they’ll come or not? No one will accept that.」
「The Empire will come for sure. I will have everyone accept this. Normally they will be able to eat without working in the fields, but in exchange once an emergency occurs they will be placed on the front lines of danger. In order to train for such an eventuality they cannot participate in farm work other than in their spare time.」

I need soldiers that are highly specialized, well coordinated, able to move based on their own decisions, and able to understand the field of battle.

The readiness of a career soldier would be different from any other. They would live a life of battle.

「Chief I believe you when you say we need them…but how many? How many elite soldiers will we have to train?」

Roleau asked and I held up my hand with two fingers extended.

「Two hundred? Are you serious Chief? Even with Fire Foxes Erucy only has 250 people.」
「You’re misunderstanding. I’m saying twenty. More than that is impossible for Erucy currently.」
「Now you’re talking way too small! Just the other day the Empire sent 500 soldiers to attack us. What can only twenty do?」

Roleau’s shock was quite reasonable. But he was fundamentally misunderstanding something.

「Roleau these are to be special types of soldiers. What I want are excellent sharpshooters….able to hold their breath and conceal their presence for long periods of time. When worst comes to worst grim reapers with the ability to silently and efficiently snipe enemy soldiers. And I need excellent scouts who can detect enemies before anyone else, gather information, and move quickly. For these two types I don’t need too many. These are the two types of warriors I want to train. With Elven aptitude this is definitely possible.」

Erucy’s victory conditions were to not fight head on and not fight near what we want to protect.

If we fought head on the three thousand soldiers would engulf and kill us. If our strategies were stolen then the Empire could simply go around our forces and attack Erucy directly.

I considered the Imperial Army reaching Erucy an automatic loss.

That meant that we had to begin and end the battle before they got close to Erucy. Of course it was impossible to defeat an army of thousands with just 20 warriors. That didn’t matter. What was important wasn’t killing soldiers, but victory as a whole.

For that reason we needed to strategize. More than likely there were only around 300-400 soldiers within the Imperial Army they would send that were willing to die under orders. The rest of the soldiers would most likely desert under enemy fire.

In order to execute my plan I needed at least 20 thoroughly trained elites and at least 2 fire magic experts.

The twenty elites were the current limit for Erucy as well as my current limit for being able to command them effectively.

「Plus the next battle should have at least 3000 soldiers attacking us. Even increasing it to 200 people wouldn’t necessarily help.」
「T-three thousand…」

Roleau seemed to deflate. It was natural. That was over ten times the total population of Erucy.

Plus amongst the 250 citizens of Erucy half of them were non-combatants. Their combat potential was near a hundred-fold of ours. It was completely different from the previous battle where we had a difference of five times.

「Let’s surrender. We have no chance of victory. We’ve become more affluent. Even if they take the usual tax we will no longer starve.」

Upon seeing Roleau’s depressed spirit the traitor Raffa saw his chance and spoke up.

「What are you saying at this point? We have already dishonored the Empire far too much. They will never forgive us. Plus when you say we should surrender…you mean we should sell out our kin as a sacrifice to them? Did you forget that we fought back because we hated that?」

As if he had been waiting for my protest Raffa’s expression warped.

「You don’t have to worry about that. Let’s offer them the Fire Foxes! If we do that I’m sure they’ll forgive us. Their Fire Stones are worth a high price! If we offer them then it’ll be a show of obedience and the Empire will be able to regain their honor. I’m sure we’ll be able to negotiate a way not to give up elves!」

Raffa spoke assuredly with great faith. I’m sure the Imperial agents had convinced him and told him what to say. However, this would not pass. I would evade the Empire’s plot and obtain a double agent for myself. It was for that purpose that I let him act so freely now.


 

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