–Third Person/Leopolt POV–
Just the other day1
「The full encirclement of the enemy base, completed.」
Under the command of Leopolt, who was entrusted with full authority, the subjugation unit successfully surrounded the rebel army, who are holed up on top of the hill. Because of the lack of troops, it wasn’t a terribly strong encirclement, but the thought was even if the rebels were to concentrate their forces and try to break through, they should quickly be destroyed from the persistent pursuit of the bow cavalry.
「Archer squad, smoke them out.」
Leopolt delivers the order and the well-trained unit immediately answers.
「Two consecutive volleys, fire!」
The enemy base is located on a large hill, surrounded on all sides by trees. No matter how you look at it, the only place for soldiers to hide would be in the woods.
「Confirm after the two consecutive volleys. If people are clamoring, fire an additional two volleys, if there is no response, fire at a different point.」
Each archer fires their arrows one after the other into the woods.
According to plan, the arrows are concentrated on the areas where the shouts erupted, disrupting the enemy’s ambush and revealing their formation.
「It appears the gathered soldiers have hidden themselves beside us.」
Myla, who is acting as a spectator, comments about the situation. She wasn’t given any authority, but she’s free to say what she wants.
「Infantry squad, attack the enemy from the front, if you face a powerful counterattack, retreat gradually while engaging them.」
Leopolt gives another order, and the arrows stop flying to let the infantry advance forward.
「Scouting their strength? Well, that’s quite reasonable.」
「According to the scouts, even if they have a lot of soldiers, there are only a little over 1000, so we can continue in this manner if things go well.」
400 infantry advance forward. Soon after they step into the woods, intense sounds of battle can be heard.
「It doesn’t appear they have schemed anything and just deployed their defense forces at the shortest distance.」
In no time, the 400 infantry retreat and exit out of the woods. It feels as if they are being pushed back, but neither Leopolt nor Myla nor any of the commanders are distressed. Everything is going as initially expected.
A strong position or a superior force is necessary for an army of crudely equipped farmers to repel a trained legitimate army. There does not appear to be much defensive equipment within the woods, so there must have been at least double or 800 units in the front. This would be the majority of the predicted enemy forces – in other words, they would be vulnerable everywhere besides the front.
「Spear cavalry, circle around to the back and charge into their base.」
In the blink of an eye, 200 spear cavalry gallop off towards the enemy base. The revolt will be over if their village – the thing in which they should be protecting and are supporting their hearts – burns down. No matter how much of their fighting force remains, they shouldn’t be able to put up a resistance after that.
Everyone was certain of their victory, but flames did not rise from the hill. What came flying in its place was a report of a struggle.
「Encountered the main force of the enemy behind the hill! The enemy numbers are close to 1000, we’re at an overwhelming disadvantage!」
「I understand. Permission to retreat granted.」
Leopolt calmly gives out orders and the light cavalry gallops back to headquarters. There has been a considerable amount of casualties, but that wasn’t the important part.
「1000 in the rear?」
Myla lets out a groan.
「They moved……No, that’s too quick and too precise. Which means they had that amount of forces there from the start.」
Leopolt has a sour look on his face. In any case, the enemy has the expected double in troops and the situation has instantly gotten worse.
Even so, the objective has been sufficiently completed. Even if the enemy has twice the number of soldiers, the difference between farmers and warriors is huge, and the difference in equipment should be enough to overwhelm them as well.
「If the enemy has a large force, it is pointless to split up our troops. Half of the bow cavalry with the infantry and spear cavalry concentrate attacks to the front, while the archers and the other half of the bow cavalry support them.」
A forced breakthrough by concentrating troops in one point may result in a high death toll, but it is the quickest method to settle things. Accompanying the frontal attack is Irijina, who is leading the army directly and barking orders.
「Full power volley! Charge!!」
As if the previous volleys were fooling around, arrows poured down furiously, and the charge begins directly after orders are shouted. The soldiers jump into the woods, but there was no sound when you would normally expect the fierce sounds of battle to echo.
「Report! There are no signs of people in the front of the woods! Besides a simple camp, there is nothing there!」
As expected, the expressions of everyone in the area change.
「They moved? But this quickly……in that case, the ones we saw in the rear were always……」
Their movements were being read completely.
「All units, fall back.」
But, it was too late.
「It’s an ambush! The attacking squad is being surrounded on both sides, enemy numbers unknown!! They’re attacking!」
「Wha-?! An ambush!? They knew where we were going to attack?!」
Myla is getting flustered.
Leopolt’s method of attack was the most optimal. That’s why those on the same level can predict one step ahead.
「Leopolt-dono! At this rate-!!」
Leopolt calmly collects his thoughts. A flank attack within the hard-to-move woods closes the gap between the armies’ skill and equipment considerably. If left alone, there will be many casualties. Even if the army is divided to oppose the enemy on both sides, it will be difficult to move around in the woods, and more importantly the number of enemies is unknown. Backup from an outside squad is needed.
「Bow cavalry, backup the attacking unit that charged into the woods, and break the encirclement to rescue them if they are surrounded.」
The other half of the bow cavalry were left behind to support the attacking army with their bows, but they turned out to be an effective reserve army. If the enemy army is counting on their mobility to defend the front and rear, they have the expected 1000 troops. 500 bow cavalry charging in should be sufficient to turn things around.
「It’s an emergency. Since I’m not part of the command, I will go as well.」
Myla jumps on a horse and follows the bow cavalry in their charge forward. With this, there is a possibility to turn the tables, or at the very least they could re-establish their position and save the attacking squad before any major damage is done.
Everyone believed that would happen.
「Report! Defensive encampments in front! Anti-cavalry structures are behind the attacking squad! We can’t breakthrough!!」
There is no way defensive structures could be in the spot where the attacking army already passed through. If they are there, it means…….
「So it means they have predicted this much as well.」
Several soldiers lay hidden in holes beforehand and stayed still until the last moment. Then, when the concentrated forces pass too far from the front, they jump out to pull fences and the like across the opening, to rebuild their defenses. They probably prepared easy-to-rebuild structures from the start.
Those makeshift structures won’t hold out for long and the 500 bow cavalry will probably break through eventually. But in that time, the possibility of the attacking squad suffering major casualties is quite high.
A crunching sound of clenching teeth can be heard, causing the nearby soldiers to look around, not even considering it would ever come from the expressionless Leopolt.
「Bowman, launch the retreat signal.」
Flaming arrows are covered in dyed cloth, with each color of cloth representing a different message to the entire army. The arrow the bowman fired up in the sky is the first he’s ever fired – the signal for the entire army to retreat.
While instructing the remaining archers to prevent the enemy from pursuing, Leopolt spits something out of his mouth. It wasn’t saliva, but a fragment of the tooth he chipped.
Present Time, City of Zan Dora
「I see, so your movements were being read from the beginning.」
I hear the story from the subjugation squad after they withdrew back into the city.
「Yes, the enemy soldiers are certainly not highly skilled. Their troops are also not largely different from the initially predicted 1000. That amount of soldiers cannot move so efficiently just by adapting to the situation. I believe they decided how to move beforehand.」
Unlike Myla and Irijina who are totally disheartened, Leopolt’s expression doesn’t look apologetic nor frustrated. But this is easier to deal with. Apologizing endlessly will solve nothing, since the important part is what follows.
「In any case, the enemy is quite formidable.」
「To be precise, it is the enemy commander. After all, our army’s skill and equipment are superior to theirs.」
Irijina uncahracteriscally hangs her head and has a pathetic look on her face as Leopolt points out that fact. In other words, just the quality of the commander was enough to turn the situation around. But Leopolt, who should feel the most humiliated, remains unperturbed.
「They use the terrain well. Because of my ineptitude, the army has suffered a considerable loss too, so it will be difficult to crush them in our present condition.」
「I was thinking of going the next time though.」
「Not to be insolent, but my leadership ability is above Lord Hardlett’s. Even if you head out, I don’t believe you would achieve a greater result than I have.」
「Wha-!? How impudent of you, saying whatever you want after coming back with your tail between your legs!!」
Celia’s face turns red as she shouts angrily. Well, it’s not something to get so upset over, besides, it was wrong to expect him to hold back in the first place. Moreover, what he said about leadership ability is the truth. If I was the one in command, things might have turned out more horribly.
「Regardless, we can’t just leave things as they are. If rumors of your defeat start circulating, public order may be disrupted.」
Adolph is probably more concerned about public order within the territory than the specific details of the rebel army.
「What is necessary to win?」
I don’t really need to ask, but I want to hear what Myla and Leopolt’s opinions are.
「A large number of troops. Their forces are limited to 1000 so we should be able to deal with them by surrounding them on all sides and attacking simultaneously.」
「If we gather the bow cavalry and Rafen’s citizens, we can get around 5000, which we can use to crush them.」
I’m sure that would be possible. But it would take time, and I probably won’t make it in time for the birth of Mel’s child.
「The problem is time.」
「That’s true. It is preferred to settle things as soon as possible in order to suppress the rumors from spreading.」
Adolph agrees with my opinion. On the other hand, Myla seems to be displeased about the civil official speaking out against her and puffs her cheeks. But because of her feeling of indebtedness after coming back defeated, she couldn’t talk back.
「Have the soldiers rest for the night. Everyone besides the wounded will sortie again.」
Everyone except Adolph has a complicated look on their faces. After fleeing from a lost battle, heading out again with an army fewer in number than before is not the smartest strategy.
「This is an order. Hurry and get ready.」
I don’t plan to listen to any objections. What a big deal – if they lose, they can bandage their tail and come back. We can lose countless times, yet resume our attack another time, whereas they only need to suffer defeat once before they’re finished. We have an overwhelming advantage from the start, so let’s just take it easy.
「Those who don’t have work, go to sleep, since thinking with those tired brains won’t produce any results anyways.」
After I say so, Leopolt unexpectedly stands up from his seat, tells something to the lower-ranked commanders and goes to his room. He really is a boring but interesting fellow.
「What’s with that guy?! The responsibility for being defeated belongs to him in the first place!」
I comfort the raging Celia. If he was going to blame himself, he would have willingly demoted himself or had someone else take his place. His own resignation is outside his job description. He is just doing his utmost, working hard not to let fatigue interfere with his plans.
「Besides, it takes quite the bit of force to shatter your own back tooth.」
「It’s nothing. Celia is cute.」
「Waa! This isn’t the right time for that!」
I ruffle Celia’s hair into a mess before letting her leave the room. Unfortunately, I have to let her rest today, so I can’t fuck her.
「Aah, you are-」
Turning back to search for the origin of the voice, I see the married maid blushing at me. It appears she has been charmed by me after she had sex with me one time.
「If I could please ask for your affection……contraception is unnecessary. My husband has already slept with me yesterday, so please do the same with me as many times as you desire……it’s fine even I get pregnant.」
「What a cute woman, come to the bed.」
I embrace her shoulder as we enter the room. I need to replenish my energy right before a fight. Fucking a maid while she’s still dressed really fires me up.
「I’m cumming, here! Get pregnant!!」
「H-hot! There’s so much……dear2, I’ve received some excellent seed……surely a healthy fourth child will-……」
Several Days Later, Near the Rebel Army Base
The soldiers have been reorganized and the army once again marches towards the destination. Despite the lower morale caused by the previous defeat, no one seems brave enough to complain, since I’m coming along this time. The morale of the bow cavalry in particular seems to have risen. As I thought, they’re useless without me.
「Is it here? ……It certainly looks like a hard place to attack, but it’s not like I can’t bulldoze my way through.」
「Elaborate traps have been laid throughout the entire area inside the woods. Unfortunately, breaking through is more difficult than it looks.」
I see, the entire area, is it?
「Is the traps something like pitfalls?」
「It isn’t something restricted to that, but things like ropes tied from tree to tree, fences and structures with overturned wooden stakes……」
Irijina, who directly engaged in close combat, makes a sour face.
「In other words, they can deploy it at any time from anywhere.」
「That is the case if they predict your movements.」
Fumu, fumu, then the answer is simple. But I’ll do a final check.
「Leopolt, what do you think is the most optimal move with this army?」
「……divide the army into two equal parts, attacking with soldiers on the right and left side. Although our army has decreased in size, we still have the overwhelming advantage in numbers. If we attack from both sides simultaneously, the enemy will have no choice but to respond on both ends.」
「And what is the weakness?」
「The enemy has encampments. If they predict our movements, they will divide their army in a 2:8 ratio – the 2 will make use of the camps and withdraw to their defences, while the 8 will hide their soldiers to launch an ambush attack, causing one side to be at a disadvantage. If we were to go rescue that side, our army going around from the outside takes much longer than their army, who are circling around from the inside, resulting in casualties and the loss of our advantage.」
If you’re thinking of something so troublesome as that, I guess things will be fine.
「Is the enemy commander more skilled than you?」
「……It is hard to compare our relative merits.」
Alright, let’s go with this.
「Deploy the entire army in front. The bow cavalry and spear cavalry will be leading the charge while the infantry will follow and the archers will provide support as necessary.」
「The front is where the enemy’s annoying trap is……」
「I don’t know where they’ll appear. Which means, it won’t matter where I go in from.」
Myla seems surprised, so I’ll pat her head.
「Get into breakthrough formation.」
「「Eeeh!?」」「Alright, let’s go!」
Celia and Myla are surprised, while Irijina displays her excitement. Luna is steadily making her own preparations.
「A sudden frontal charge? Even though we don’t know the state of battle?」
「We won’t figure anything out just by watching. Besides, there’s no way I’ll win against someone who can constantly predict our movements using my brain anyways.」
Leopolt remains silent and motionless. So in reality, he feels slightly irritated when I mention how he lost in a battle of wits.
「Did you know I would charge at them?」
「It was within my expectations. But that’s because I know Lord Hardlett’s personality. If they didn’t obtain information only available in the rumors of your heroic feats, there are plenty of strategies they should be prepared for, rather than expecting someone charging in from the front like an idiot.」
「Then that’s fine, since doing what your opponent hates is what a war is.」
The army forms into a triangular shape, with the apex facing towards the enemy. They should know a charge is coming just from looking at our formation.
However, it’s not like their soldiers are highly trained or highly skilled. The reason they’re putting up a fight is because they have an excellent commander leading them. It will take time for the commander’s messages to reach the entire army, and there is a chance they might make a mistake if they get flustered. They are weak soldiers relying on a strong leader, so if we turn the fight into a free-for-all, we can still win even with half the numbers. What is needed isn’t some scrupulous plan, but speed and pressure.
Since we were in a hurry, it isn’t the most beautiful formation. The entire army runs forward in a crooked triangle formation with myself and the escort unit in the lead. With the roar of the horses’ hooves, even shouts cannot be heard.
When did Leopolt get beside me? I thought he liked to stay at the back.
「They are ultimately just peasants. They will feel fear if their leadership crumbles, so please defeat them in a way that makes them feel the most fear.」
What the heck does that mean?
「It will be perfect if you could tear the entrails out of living enemies or suck the blood out of them.」
「Don’t screw with me.」
What do you think I am? But I get what you’re thinking.
Leopolt doesn’t say anymore and moves back. Let’s go wild with our rampage.
A volley of arrows come flying at us, but the barrage is sparse and momentum is weak. Something of this level is not enough to stop us.
As soon as I dived into the woods, Schwartz jumps up. Looking down, I could see a rope tied in between the trees. I see, so they prepared this after seeing we were going to charge. This trap probably took only a few seconds to prepare. But Schwartz appears to have seen through it and jumped up.
「Unfortunately, this one is a little special.」
I swing my spear at the two farmers, blankly staring up at me. From their appearance, they look completely like any other peasants. The two of them try to escape by running in between the trees, but this Dwarven spear of mine bisects them along with the trees. If the trees aren’t too thick, they won’t be a problem for my spear.
「There’s a rope there!!」
Several of the escort unit and bow cavalry chasing after me tumbles over. The cavalry behind them hurriedly decelerates to avoid the rope, but-
「Don’t lower your speed! Run past it! You’re just unlucky if you flip over!!」
They pick up speed again after my furious order. That’s better, at the very least there is a higher chance of winning like this than having to worry about the enemy while being careful of where they step as they proceed forward.
Without slowing down, the cavalry unit charges straight into the woods, galloping deep inside. Some occasionally get caught by traps, and many bow cavalry gets tripped up by trees in succession, as apparently running full-speed through the woods is quite the difficult task for them.
However, it isn’t a big deal if you look at the bigger picture. The enemy is on foot, escaping from the charging units in a flurry without caring about their appearance, but end up getting caught and finished off.
「You guys, don’t stop moving! The captain is in the front.」
「If you dawdle around, the captain will take your wives and daughters!」
Everyone charges forward with bloodshot eyes, caring not about suffering injuries. The bow cavalry from the mountain tribe in particular have raised their morale close to the highest it can go because I’m here.
「There is no way we can allow the great chief to lose! Know that it is a great honor to die and return to the sacred mountains!!」
The enemies guarding the entrance were either routed or overtaken and we soon reach the halfway point of the woods, but that is when another problem rears its head.
「There was one last time as well, but this suddenly appeared……」
Looking ahead, there is a wooden fence of about 2 meters in height, which seems to normally be lain sideways, disguised as the base part of the wooden stakes before being flipped up. As expected, even Schwartz would have a hard time jumping over that. Not only would going around be playing into their hands, it would take too much time, and an army changing its direction couldn’t make for a better target. We could approach the fence to destroy it, but things won’t be so simple since soldiers are ready and waiting with spears behind the fence.
But Luna doesn’t panic and advances forward.
「Oh great chief, who graces us with his presence, we cannot let you be defeated here. Please behold our determination.」
The bow cavalry draws their swords as if following Luna’s words and charges all at once.
「Oh god of the mountains, bear witness to our battle!」
Spears protrude from the palisade and even wooden stakes are sticking out from the ground in front of them. It’s something made in a hurry, but quite the formidable opponent for cavalry.
Even so, they don’t falter. The enemy soldiers on the other side of the fence seem shaken because of that.
Before colliding, all of them cover their horses eyes and continue charging straight into the fence.
「Hiih!」「Who are they, they’re insane!」「This isn’t possible!!」
The blindfolded lead horses of the bow cavalry don’t slow down at all, crashing into the palisade. The bow cavalry suffer fatal wounds and die one after the other as they get impaled by the wooden stakes and spears.
Despite losing their lives, the momentum of the full-speed gallop which carried the horses’ bodies don’t just get stopped by the fence. The leaping horses neigh loudly as their feet get tangled, and tumble into the wooden fence. The combined weight of human and horse total several hundred kilos and is more than enough to topple the hastily constructed palisade.
It seems the reason for blindfolding the horses is to ensure no loss of speed at the moment of impact. The fence gradually collapses and the horse corpses roll into the enemy soldiers’ midst.
「Good grief, how extreme……We’ll follow suit. Don’t be late!」
Having been shown such a heroic method of fighting by the bow cavalry, the others seem to have less of a fear towards the traps. The infantry, spear cavalry and all the soldiers rush through the opened gap and push through forcefully to knock down the fence all the while being stabbed by spears.
I can’t stay in the back either. I grab my spear with both hands and get into a batting stance, bringing it all the way behind my head.
With a full-powered horizontal swing of my spear, the upper half of the fence is blown off. I’m thankful the fence wasn’t reinforced with steel.
It’s enough for its height to be halved. Without giving any instructions, Schwartz springs forward and bounces over the fence.
This horse has such an evil personality to purposely land on a soldier holding a spear on the other side. It made him cry out like a strangled pig.
「Hih……this guy……don’t tell me……」
After greeting, I give them a single swing of my spear, causing the two of them to lose everything above their shoulders. Luckily for the man who got hit by the handle instead of the blade, he flew into a tree and broke his spine after folding in the ‘く’ character.
I was told to make things showy. It’s not my style to beat people to death, but I guess it’s all the same if they die in the end.
I stab the man in the back, then pick him up, swinging his body at the next enemies while he remains stuck on my spear. I swing my weapon around without paying attention to trees and the man’s pierced body breaks into pieces horribly on impact.
Instead of cleanly beheading the enemies, I purposely shift my aim to blow off the midpoint of a person’s head or vertically bisect it in half. The blade of the spear may hit the skull, but I’m sure this spear won’t face any resistance. Naturally, blood is sprayed everywhere, getting on me and the area all around me. How dirty, and there’s no bath here either, so perhaps I’ll stop now.
One soldier finds an opportunity to charge at me while the spear I’m holding in my right hand has skewered two groaning people, though I use my left hand to grab his head.
「If you continue to resist, this is what will happen to you.」
Putting on a show to the other soldiers, I grip the head of the enemy tighter.
With a squashing sound, the head explodes. While I’m at it, I hurl the two people impaled on my spear high into the air.
「D-……demon king……」「I can’t fight against an evil spirit!!」
The enemy soldiers finally abandon the defences of the fences and withdraw backwards. Fellow soldiers continue to break through. As soon as the cavalry get past the wall, the soldiers on foot have no choice but to run away.
「Chase them, take them out completely!」
「St-stop it! Gyaaaah.」「Hiiiiiee!!」
The commanders’ orders get more violent, as if making up for the amount of damage suffered. However, that is unavoidable, so victory should be the first thing on their minds.
「You can go around killing them later. Those who have broken past, follow me, advance forward!」
I get Schwartz to gallop forward into the woods again. Since a soldier has turned his back to me and I’m just moving forward, might as well stab him on the way, though Schwartz makes a point to trample him as well. The enemy soldiers are already in disarray, but I have a feeling things won’t end here.
After that, the sporadic traps cause several more allies to be sacrificed as we brute-force our way through. Since passing the fence, there hasn’t been a large defense line at all. In fact, the number of enemies has been decreasing as we progress further in, since we haven’t seen any living enemies in our path since then.
「Their base is just on the other side!!」
What unveils before our eyes as we exit the woods is a steep hill. It’s not a rocky mountain so it looks like we can still climb it.
「It’s the enemy archers!」
Archers have been deployed on the ridge of that hill. This is by-the-book movement, entirely expected development.
Scattered arrows are loosed in our direction and knock over a few allies. But their precision and force isn’t effective enough to defeat the allies who possess shields. When the bow cavalry rush out of the woods and return fire, their arrows overturn the advantage provided by the difference in height and instantly eliminate the enemies. It was obvious who was superior from the prior clash and shoot out here.
「It will be our victory when we climb this hill!!」
The commander of the infantry shouts loudly as he starts climbing the hill almost if he were crawling. He might have spoke too soon, because compared to the volume of his voice, the speed at which he is climbing is depressing.
I would follow after him, but horses can’t run up the hill. As he climbs slowly up the slope, several enemies appear in front of him. In the next moment, countless boulders and thick logs roll down.
The soldiers scrambling to be first to the top are crushed one after the other. Some panic and turn back, tripping themselves on the sleep slope and tumbling all the way to the bottom.
「Kuh, having come so far!」
Celia makes a sour face, as if she bit into something unpleasant. The archers support from behind with their arrows, but not knowing where the enemies are makes the backup fairly ineffective.
「As expected, we can’t fight here! Pull back for now and after you get to flatter ground……」
Irijina also seems to think fighting on a hill where losing your concentration for a single moment would cause you to be flattened is a bad idea.
「Aegir-sama, watch out!!」
Celia shouts as a giant log rolls down from atop the hill.
How did they find such a large tree?
「Celia, Irijina, jump out of the way.」
I leave my spear with Irijina and hold both hands out as I lower my body.
I push my hands against the rolling log. As expected, it is unbelievably heavy and its momentum causes my feet to slide back. I somehow manage to dig my steel boots into the ground to kill the momentum, but I’ve been pushed quite far down. However, this is as much as it’ll go.
The log is heavy, more so than any weapon I’ve carried so far, which means I probably won’t be able to lift it up, but is comparatively easier to roll because of its lack of branches.
With the speed of an ant, I push the thick log up and climb the slope step by step. The soldiers laying down and clinging to the hill to hide themselves sees me and shrewdly follows behind me.
「So this log only takes one person to move.」
「You idiot, the feudal lord-sama isn’t human.」
They’re saying whatever they please, huh. I’ll fuck their wives after this is over.
「What are you guys doing?! You guys push too!!」
The commanders return to their senses and yells.
Fellow soldiers crowd around shoulder-to-shoulder beside me. It becomes a tad easier to push, but now it’s quite stuffy.
Rocks and logs continue to roll down the hill, but is deflected to the side by the enormous log we are pushing. The enemies start to panic and prepare to release arrows at us, but showing their heads above the ridge line means the bow cavalry at the bottom of the hill can accurately snipe them.
All of us sweat profusely as we push the trunk up the hill, and then we finally reach the summit.
「Geh!」「You’re kidding me……」
The enemy about to push another rock lets out voice of disbelief. Unfortunately, this is reality. It was really heavy, so let me vent my anger out on you.
I let go of the log and draw my sword. The soldiers following behind me also spread themselves out beside me. It appears the enemy’s village is located behind them, so there’s practically no more room for any plans to interfere.
「Crush them!」「Kill theeeeeem!!」
The morale of the endlessly attacking soldiers shoots up. The roles have now reversed. Now, the end approaches.
–Third Person/Tristan POV–
A Little While Ago, Rebel Army Base
「Their entire army is going to be charging from the front right off the bat?」
Tristan exclaims while located in a place where he could watch the entirety of the unfolding events.
「Are those guys idiots? Going straight down the middle like this.」
The men on the sides ridicule and laugh, but Tristan doesn’t smile.
「Haah……This is the thing I least wanted to happen. In this way, I can’t fool them at all.」
In that moment, the surrounding men’s expressions changes.
「Hey, hey, is it going to be alright?」
「No, it’s not. I did make some preparations though.」
「Woah, they’re charging into the entrance of the woods……there should be a rope trap……」
「They’re charging in without a care. It’s amazing how ridiculously absurd it is.」
The men laugh at the way Tristan describes the events. They all believed the enemy would get caught in the trap.
「We gotta prepare our drinks for when we win.」
「Mm, I think it’s better to wait on that. To be honest, this is quite bad……could you tell them to prop a fence in the camp in front of them?」
「A fence? Got it.」
Tristan’s directions are simple and clear. This isn’t his preference or due to his personality, but simply rather the men he’s working with are incapable of executing anything more complicated. Most if not all of the army is made up of peasants and those who have experience being a commander or a soldier cannot take extensive orders.
「Advance.」「Stand down.」「Do ‘X’.」「Hide.」
The orders needed to be extremely short and simple.
In order for complicated actions and instructions to be carried out, the movements need to be decided in advance, practiced countless times and the type of orders limited. They had to predict what would happen before it happened, or else they would not be able to react and choose strategies according to how the situation changes.
「But why is it bad if they charge? Isn’t it the same as dealing with a wild animal?」
「Like I said, I intend to face the great commander, Count Hardlett. Traps for wild beasts won’t work.」
He sighs, seeing how 90% of his plans are useless.
「Moreover, while you can limit sacrifices and drive off the enemy in a battle of strategy, both sides will suffer major losses if it becomes a brawl. They can resupply their soldiers and try again, but it’s different for us.」
Tristan trails off saying ‘That’s why a rebellion is-’, stopping mid-sentence when he saw a small amount of horses arrive to deliver a message.
「The palisade in front has been broken through! Those guys are crazy, covering their horses eyes and charging straight into the fence to break it.」
「Uh oh, this is seriously bad. They’ll be able to breakthrough at this rate. Tell the people on top of the hill to get ready.」
The messenger continues to speak.
「There is one amongst them who is the most dangerous. He’s impaling our allies and shredding them to pieces……th-that thing isn’t human!」
There is one person that comes to mind.
「Haah……it’s definitely Count Hardlett himself. I don’t think this at all, the feudal lord coming himself means we can’t simply back out now. How troublesome, I wonder if he’ll forgive us if we apologize now.」
「What are you saying?! We’re the rebel army, and if we lose, you and I will be hanged to death! No, it might be merciful for us to be killed, and we might be severely tortured instead.」
「I hope that doesn’t happen. I can’t ride a horse, so I can’t run away after all.」
Eventually angry roars can be heard from the entrance of the woods. It means the opponent has gotten through the woods.
The archers try to intercept them but most of them get defeated instead.
「You’re kidding……why are we the ones who get wiped out when we’re on higher ground?」
「That’s the difference in training and equipment. We don’t have to train to catch rabbits after all.」
Tristan raises his hand and gives a signal. A row of thin logs are lined up from the village to the edge of the hill, where large rocks and thicker logs are pushed across them. As a result, the boulders and trunks can be transported even with the strength of the women and elderly and a constant attack can be maintained.
「If we continue hurling objects down the steep slope, the enemy won’t be able to climb up and will probably make a detour towards the flatter east side of the hill. Is the pitfall and fire prepared?」
「Yeah, perfectly! We’ll cover their body in flames!」
「Well, this will somehow get us through the night……」
Tristan cuts his words short and stares in amazement at the bottom of the hill.
「I’m surprised……to be able to roll that log up the hill like that.」
「No way……it took 10 people altogether to move that thing!」
The especially large log meant to flatten all the enemies at once is being used as a shield against arrows and rocks. It took at least ten people to roll something like that on flat ground, so nobody could imagine it being pushed up an incline.
「At this rate, they’ll breakthrough the west. Have those who went to prepare in the east come back.」
「Where did the messenger with a horse go !?」
「He just went to the east!」
「Call him back! No, have someone run and tell them!!」
Without knowing the location of the messenger, the order did not get relayed and the opportunity to turn things around was lost.
It’s unreasonable to be shocked, since he himself and those men of his are just peasants and shouldn’t have been able to fight a battle in the first place.
「Haah, I really just wanted to live a peaceful life and run a bookstore in a city somewhere. And maybe even let a cat sit on my lap.」4
It doesn’t seem likely his wish will be granted.
Eventually, the enemy soldiers who finished pushing the log to the top of the hill engage with the ally soldiers. Although there are only a few of them, the ally soldiers get routed in the blink of an eye when faced with their ferocious aura.
The man swinging the large spear in particular is dismantling soldiers left and right. Eight soldiers charge at him, but end up as just their lower halves. Seeing this, all the other ally soldiers instantly lose all morale.
Finally, as the supply of objects to throw down the hill diminish to nothing, enemies start appearing from the hill like the spreading of fire.
「Tristan! They climbed up! What should we do next?!!」
With one last sigh, Tristan spreads his hands and shakes his head.
Protagonist: Aegir Hardlett. 22 years old. Spring.
Status: Goldonia Kingdom Count. Great Feudal Lord of Eastern Area of Goldonia. King of the Mountains. Friend of the Dwarves.
Troops Commanded: 1850
Bow Cavalry: 650, Infantry: 280, Archers: 200, Spear Cavalry: 140, Escort: 80, Standby in Rafen: 500
Assets: 14300 gold (Labor -200) Loan: 20 000 gold
Weapons: Dual Crater (large sword), Dwarf’s Spear, High-grade Steel One-handed Sword
Family: Nonna (wife), Carla (concubine), Mel (pregnant concubine), Kuu (lover), Ruu (lover), Mireille (lover), Leah (Self-declared Sex Slave), Casie (ghost), Miti (lover), Alma, Kroll (non-virgin), Melissa (lover), Maria (lover), Rita (head maid), Catherine (lover), Yoguri (rehabilitating), Pipi (follower), Sebastian (butler), Dorothea (lover, in the capital)
Children: Sue, Miu, Ekaterina (daughter), Antonio, Claude (son), Rose (foster daughter)
Subordinates: Celia (adjutant), Irijina (commander), Luna (commander), Ruby (Luna’s follower and lover), Myla (peace officer), Leopolt (staff officer), Adolph (domestic affairs official), Gido (escort), Claire & Laurie (official merchant), Schwartz (horse), Lilian (actress)
Sexual Partners: 114, children who have been born: 10