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The time goes back a bit――…
The front line of the Felzen remnant army surrounding Fort Mitte was enveloped in heat. There were many bonfires burning around the area, swaying and illuminating the faces of the angry Felzen remnant soldiers.
Their gazes were cast uniformly to the front wall, where many ladders had been erected.
“Message from the main camp! Second line, charge! I repeat, second line, charge!”
Horns were blown from various places. Cutting through the night air and shooting up into the night sky.
“The fall is imminent! I hope you will all put up a good fight!”
A feverish voice came from the commander of the first line. The second line shouted in response and began to advance. The cold air blowing from the Travant Mountains was crushed by the heat waves released by the Felzen remnant soldiers.
“Release the bows! Cover fire!”
A large number of arrows shot from the bow disappear into the dark night. Only the sound of arrow feathers flapped eerily. However, it definitely drew an arc and fell into Fort Mitte, and several screams rose up from the fort walls. As if propelled by the screams, the second line ran up the ladder with great force.
However, the enemy was not without resistance. They were dropping rocks, removing ladders, pouring boiling water, and using every means at their disposal to defend Fort Mitte.
“But it’s only a matter of time before it falls.”
Skaaha, who was watching the front line at the main camp of the Felzen remnant army, muttered.
While Skaaha was looking at the map prepared on her desk, her aides around her were quickly giving instructions to their respective messengers.
“What is the status of the third prince Blutar?”
“They’re on their way here right now, but it looks like the separate unit’s diversion was successful, so it’ll be at least three days before they get here.”
Rach said, clenching his fists. He was probably delighted that they were able to buy some time. Still, they mustn’t let their guard down. It is always the case in the war that anything can happen.
“I see… then, we can lower the rearguard by one level and send those soldiers to the front.”
When Skaaha motioned to the waiting messenger, he gave her a salute and immediately ran off into the darkness. Then Skaaha threw a glance at Fort Mitte.
“…It seems that the enemy has noticed that we are concentrating our forces in front.”
There are many bonfires set up on the front walls. From the way the black shadows are moving in a hurry, it seems that the enemy has noticed their intentions and is gathering their soldiers.
“Well, there was nothing to hide, and more importantly, it would be too late for them to notice. We’ve already got our hands on the walls.”
Rach said, and the surrounding aides nodded in agreement.
“We’ve made a makeshift battering ram and put it on the front line. It’s a regret that we couldn’t build a siege tower ― we’re sorry we couldn’t live up to Skaaha-sama’s expectations.”
The aide who was in charge of the operatives bowed his head apologetically. However, Skaaha grabbed him by the shoulders and shook her head.
“It’s nothing to be concerned about. You deserve praise just for making it here today.”
“But above all, the battle is not over yet. It’s too early to be distracted.”
Skaaha’s face tightened into a grimace, and she looked at her aides in turn.
“Don’t let your guard down just yet. Our enemy is the War Maiden. She might come up with some kind of plan. If we show an opening, we will be the ones who get eaten.”
The aides returned a vigorous voice. Skaaha nodded in satisfaction and then sent out the messengers to check on each of the walls.
“As soon as the messenger returns, we will destroy Fort Mitte with all our forces, sparing no expense.”
“Understood ― but, what about the Grantz soldiers holed up in the fort?”
“Those who surrender will be captured, and those who continue to resist will not be tolerated.”
“Then I’ll notify the troops to do so.”
Rach nodded vigorously and was about to run out of the command center.
“Urgent message! This is an urgent message!”
A messenger rushed into the command center, out of breath. The aides who had been moving around stopped and turned their gazes to the entrance.
Skaaha also raised her eyebrows and turned her stern eyes on the messenger.
“Ha! There is an enemy attack from the rear! The commander of the rear forces has informed me that he needs reinforcements!”
“…Enemy attack from the rear?”
When Skaaha muttered in a daze, the messenger who was dominated by frustration slammed the ground.
“The flag is ― a dragon that grasps a silvery-white sword on a black background!”
The messenger opened his mouth vigorously with a burst of spit.
“It must be the One-Eyed Dragon, the descendant of the God of War!”
In the command center, the aides were in a panic. One by one, their faces turned pale, and they started shouting.
“Nonsense! Isn’t he supposed to be attacking the Grand Duchy of Dral?”
“That’s why Lord Puppchen withdrew his troops from Felzen!”
“Are you sure you’re not mistaken? I’ve heard reports that less than 5,000 troops invaded the Grand Duchy of Dral. The Grand Duchy of Dral, on the other hand, has an army of over 30,000. The difference in strength is obvious.”
“But there’s no mistaking it! The flag they’re raising is definitely the divine flag of the God of War!”
Even though he was exposed to the verbal assaults of the aides, the messenger was desperately trying to convey the gravity of the situation.
But there was no way that the aides could be easily convinced. They were on the verge of victory, but when they suddenly heard that the new attacker was the descendant of the God of War, they could not help but be confused.
“It’s nighttime; you must have mistaken it! Go and check again. Then you’ll understand!”
“No, there’s no need to check.”
“If you let your imagination get the better of you and make a big deal out of it, that’s exactly what the enemy wants. Let’s talk about it calmly.”
The quiet fighting spirit of Skaaha’s words silenced the aides.
“In the first place, what are you people upset about? What’s up with the descendant of the God of War?”
“B-but… rumors of him have spread to this land as well.”
“Rumors are rumors. Don’t let them bother you.”
Skaaha slammed her hand on the desk and glared at her aides.
“Don’t be fooled by the names of your enemies. Don’t lose sight of your purpose. What we need to do is to stop the Grantz army from advancing to the rear, or at least to defeat them once and for all.”
Without hiding her indignation, Skaaha picked up her blue spear and started walking. Rach sighed and followed her back. Then the aides returned to their senses and followed her.
“Skaaha-sama! W-where are you going?”
“It’s obvious; I have to stop the enemy that has appeared in the rear.”
Skaaha told him briefly and called the messenger.
“Do you know the number of the enemy?”
“It’s too dark to get an accurate count, but I’d say there are more than a thousand.”
“What’s the situation in the rear?”
“The enemy is attacking so fiercely that… one by one, our commanders are being killed, and we are on the verge of collapse.”
After hearing the words of the messenger, Skaaha sent a glance to the rear. Then she heard the sound of sword fights that were not supposed to be heard.
The roar of horseshoes that shook the entrails, the battle cry that seemed to pierce the eardrums. A huge fire erupted with a force that turned the sky red, probably from the burning of the tents.
“How many can be moved quickly?”
Skaaha asked Rach.
“We have about a hundred cavalry since we put most of them in the front line, so this is all we can take.”
With the main camp deeply encroached upon, a mere hundred cavalries wandering around in the dark, avenging and annihilating any enemy that might come out of nowhere. It’s just impossible.
Skaaha turned her distant eyes to the night sky. The stars were twinkling in the night sky, oblivious of humanity.
“…Is there still a possibility of reversing the situation?”
If so, she decided to do everything she could to help.
“…Lord Rach. I want you to bring me a horse.”
Rach rode off into the darkness, avoiding the waves of soldiers. After watching his back, Skaaha turned her body to her aides with a quiet face.
“I’d like to thank you all for your patience with my selfishness.”
As if they saw Skaaha’s resolve, they all dropped to one knee in nervousness.
Looking at her loyal subordinates, Skaaha lowered the corners of her eyes before opening her mouth.
“The fact that we have come this far is due to each of your efforts.”
One by one, Skaaha carefully added a word of gratitude and patted the shoulders of each of her aides. When she thanked the last of them, she turned her hand to the bowed figures.
“I entrust the future operation to you. I want you to deliver just one word from me to the entire army.”
“Ha! I’ll follow you with my life in any way I can!”
The aides must not have doubted the following words from Skaaha. They must have thought that she would order them to throw away their lives for the sake of Felzen and to continue to resist to the end for the sake of Felzen’s rebirth.
Just one word. That was enough to make the aides’ faces contort pitifully. It was not what they were expecting to hear. They looked at Skaaha as if to say so.
It’s not just one person who has that question. It was something that everyone had on their mind.
“We’ll fight alongside you, Skaaha-sama!”
“Yes! There is no way I’m leaving you behind!”
One after another, the aides spat out words that sounded like they were crying out for help. Still, as if to push them away, Skaaha’s eyes narrowed sharply, a change from earlier.
“As a survivor of the Felzen royal family, this is my last order as your leader.”
The royal family’s orders are absolute. But undaunted, the aides thrust their swords into the earth one after another.
“Then, let our heads fall here!”
“Exactly. If we are to be a burden to you, Skaaha-sama, we will die here.”
“Do not underestimate us! Do you think that we will choose to flee just because we are outnumbered?”
Skaaha retreated under the pressure of the aides.
Then Rach comes back with a horse in tow.
“I think it would be better to give up, Skaaha-sama.”
“You are the only king we revere, and you are the only king we follow.”
Rach shrugged his shoulders with a wry smile.
“In addition, Skaaha-sama told us earlier that we should not lose sight of our goal and that we should stop the Grantz army.”
Rach handed the horses over to her. As Skaaha took the reins in dismay, Rach too dropped to one knee, as did the other aides.
“Our king. Please give us your orders. Please command us to destroy the enemies that are against Felzen.”
Skaaha muttered quietly, let out a laugh, and jumped on the back of her horse.
“Then, you should stay here and concentrate on taking down Fort Mitte without thinking about anything else.”
“Wa? Please wait! Isn’t that the same as before?”
“You can’t just leave the command center in the dust. You’ve disobeyed orders once; you’ll have to put up with that much.”
A sound argument. The words were irrefutable, and the aides fell silent, helpless to do anything about it. They nodded their heads with complicated expressions as if it was a good thing that they were allowed to fight on the same battlefield.
“I will go alone to the rear and take the head of the One-Eyed Dragon.”
This was met with some displeasure by Rach.
“Please wait. At least take this Rach with you. What will you do without an escort?”
“No need. The rear line is in a melee with a mixture of friend and foe. Even if I took an escort there, it would not only get lost; it might even provoke a fight.”
Therefore, a single-armed assault ― She who has the Five Emperors of the Spirit Sword “Ice Emperor” can do it.
“Lord Rach. You will stay here and defend the main camp. Is that clear?”
“Then leave the rest to me!”
When she pulled on the reins, the neighs of the horse echoed. The air rumbled as if to announce Skaaha’s presence to the heavens.
The horse began to gallop at full speed, and in a flash, the main camp was enveloped in darkness. Shortly after that, Skaaha arrives at the battlefield where the decapitating screams are roaring.
A hellish scene of screaming and shouting spread out in front of her, where enemies were coming at her from all directions.
The rear line had been devastated by the fierce attacks. Some of the allies were running for their lives, while others were burning in flames and dying at the end of their screams.
The unceasing rain of death was pouring down on this place.
“…How can the enemy be this close?”
Twenty-eight ― that’s the number of enemy soldiers she has slaughtered up to this point. If they’re allowed to advance this deep, the enemy’s blades may already be closing in on the main camp.
“I’ll take your head!”
“You’re in my way.”
After piercing the enemy’s throat with a single thrust, Skaaha devilishly kicked her horse’s belly and stepped over the corpses of her allies. There is no time to deal with small fry. She had to find the One-Eyed Dragon. But in this darkness, on this vast battlefield, it would be extremely difficult to find a single man.
“Has my plan failed?”
Most of the commanders in the Grantz Empire just sit back and watch the war unfold. But she had heard that there were some who preferred to fight on the front lines.
“There is a possibility that the One-Eyed Dragon is the latter…”
Skaaha clicked her tongue and tried to turn her head, but her gaze fell on a spot.
In the darkness, a few torches flickered. Skaaha turned her horse towards it as if she was drawn to it with a little bit of hope.
If her memory serves her right, that is where she put the frozen sixth princess. And as the distance closed, a hint of understanding dawned in Skaaha’s eyes.
The figure of a man sitting in front of the frozen Liz, surrounded by multiple cavalrymen. She feels a sense of supremacy that sends chills down her spine.
She had never seen anyone radiate such overwhelming supremacy before. That’s why she was so sure. There is no doubt in her mind that he is the One-Eyed Dragon.
Skaaha, who shouted happily, readied the Ice Emperor, bent forward on her horse, and started running across the plain at full speed. Of course, if she made such a loud noise, the enemy would be aware of her.
“Who are you?”
“I am the one who will give you a peaceful death!”
She kicked the back of her horse and leaped into the darkness as the torches were all aimed at Skaaha. A spear was thrust toward Skaaha, but she managed to avoid it by twisting in midair. She then flashed the tip of her spear, pierced the enemy’s throat, kicked the corpse, and leaped.
The enemy soldiers were stunned by her acrobatic skills ― she swung the hilt of the “Ice Emperor” at their heads and crushed their skulls. As the brain plasma splattered all over the place, Skaaha thrust one of them to death and knocked the second one away with a counterattack. As for the third, she pulled him down from his horse using only her arm strength and trampled him to death with the horseshoe of the soldier’s beloved horse.
“Hugin-sama! Take Hiro-sama and run――!?”
“Do you think I’ll let that happen?”
A bolt of blue lightning pierces the body of the fourth enemy soldier who is confronting her.
An enemy soldier with a large hole in his stomach slipped off the back of his horse and fell silent. Finally, Skaaha stopped moving as she stabbed the Ice Emperor into the ground.
“It is against chivalry to kill women and children. So can you please lower that bow?”
Skaaha inflated her supremacy and glared menacingly at the woman who was pointing her bow at her.
It’s a brown-skinned woman. From the looks of it, she exudes a cheerful atmosphere. She could see that her hands were trembling. She was as frightened as a small animal targeted by a predator.
Even so, the fact that she did not run away might mean that she adored the One-Eyed Dragon.
Even if she loses her life, even if she dies in misery, she will not regret it, and in her fright, there is a brave determination. When Skaaha looked at such a healthy girl, she could not bear to let her life be scattered.
That’s why ― Skaaha exploded with anger.
“Are you intending to hide behind a woman’s back for any length of time?”
The brown-skinned woman’s limbs tensed up at the sound of the voice that sent electric currents through her body. Most importantly, it was a voice that could be heard by many as it traveled across the battlefield.
In other words, it was like telling the enemy where you were. Immediately, words began to fly around to confirm the safety of the One-Eyed Dragon.
Even so, Skaaha could not control her emotions. Many soldiers lost their precious lives to protect the One-Eyed Dragon. The brown-skinned woman decided to confront her, even though she knew she was outmatched.
“And yet, what a disgraceful appearance!”
Lethargy ― despite the overwhelming supremacy, there was not even a hint of energy.
“If you’re not going to fight, I’ll take your head!”
Skaaha pointed the tip of the “Ice Emperor” at the young man who wore an extraordinary atmosphere.