Having cleaned up the enemy fleet in Patena, we begin to march with our entire army in tow to join the frontal warfront where the main forces of our allies and the enemy will collide. My personal army, the 105th army corps and the Aless soldiers form a rather jumbled mess of 40 000 and give off an uneasy vibe at first glance, but I know their abilities are proven in battle.
That said, we have great numbers and are pulling cannons along, so our marching speed is slow to say the least.
When I suggested for myself to go ahead with only the cavalry, staff officers Leopolt and Tristan said that there was no need to arrive one or two days ahead of time since the battle was in a stalemate, so I held back.
「What’s wrong, worried?」
Right now, I’m not thinking about that.
「No, more importantly, tell me what happened. How far did that man’s hands touch? Around here?」
I question Sekrit, who was riding with me on Schwartz, and place my hand on her thigh, unrest clearly showing in the tone of my voice.
「Fufufu…… that’s only the thigh. We aren’t kids playing around.」
Sekrit takes my hand and moves it along her thigh, to her hips, and even to her precious place.
「His fingers were long. Being a sailor as well…… his hands were rugged with blisters all over them.」
If fingers like that entered a woman’s crotch, they would surely become aroused.
Jealousy wells up as my imagination runs wild, picturing Sekrit in agony from the handsome man’s fingers.
「If only I was a little faster to save you……」
Sekrit stares into my eyes and shakes her head provokingly.
「Unfortunately, that wasn’t against my will. I allowed him to do so after all.」
She goads me by tracing my chin with her finger.
「Rehercles was quite the looker. Although I don’t dislike a boorish face…… if I were to compare, the choice is obvious.」
I’m superior in terms of physical strength and reliability, but appearance is something I can’t change.
I can only try to console myself with the fact that I punched him in the face really hard.
Her dainty finger brushes up to my cheek.
「As you already know, he was my subordinate during my days in the Empire. Actually, the one who took my virginity and taught me the pleasures of a woman was him ……as I was crying from the pain of being deflowered, he softly licked my entire body.」
「What did you say!?」
I feel like what she’s telling me now is contradictory to what she said previously about her past, but I can’t remember because of my jealousy.
I rip open Sekrit’s collar and add hickeys all over her nape and chest area.
「Hey now, that hurts. Don’t suck so hard, my skin’s going to bruise.」
Someone tugs my back when I was desperately putting my mark on Sekrit.
I look beside me and see Celia lined up beside me, reaching out her hand with her cheeks puffed.
I’ve been paying too much attention to Sekrit lately, I guess. Let me share some affection with the cute Celia too.
「There, there, I’ll put Celia on Schwartz――」
「That might not have been the only virginity he stole from me.」
I turn back to Sekrit in a daze.
「Luna-san, help me out here!」
Luna grips my hand tightly.
Oh yeah, I have to love her――
「After pushing me onto the bed, his tongue slithered all the way from the tips of my toes to my thigh……」
She extends her dark-skinned leg in front of me, prompting me to unconsciously stick my tongue out.
「Tch, then I’ll use the last resort! Irijina-san, if you would please!」
「Wahaha! Leave it to me!」
Instigated by Celia, Irijina leaps from her horse and wraps her arms around me.
I couldn’t withstand the impact, resulting in everybody, including Sekrit and Luna, who put their hands on me, falling off their horses.
Such foolishness continued as we made our way 20 km due south towards the capital, where we would end up speechless after arriving at the frontal warfront and seeing the bizarre scene.
Both armies were stretched to the east and west.
The area in between the armies was supposed to be a grassland with a farming village, a small woods, and gentle hills scattered around, however, the meadows turned brown from the repeated trampling of steel boots and the spot where the village should have been was occupied by mountains of ashes that barely resemble houses.
The woods where hunters would find rabbits and deer to eat were also reduced to countless stumps, most likely cut down for the wood and also to clear up any obstructions to vision.
「This is…… horrible.」
「It’s like the land itself died.」
Celia and Luna mutter sadly.
In the place of the village and the woods stood a crude fence, a hastily-dug trench and a simple watchtower.
With the prolonged stalemate, each side had expanded their camp, decorating the ruined land with multiple encampments.
「A tremendous amount of labor was needed to construct all these defensive structures. In other words, the line of defense hasn’t moved at all.」
Leopolt is right. If either side was able to advance on the battlefield, they shouldn’t have had the time to do all this.
Goldonia and South Yuguria grappled fiercely without a victor being decided.
「Ah! Combat has started over there!」
Luna’s excellent eyes spotted activity at a certain point, which she indicates with a finger.
I follow the invisible line from her finger and see a group of enemies attacking an ally camp.
「How come the other allies aren’t providing support!? ……how odd, the other enemy squads aren’t moving either.」
As Celia tilts her head curiously, Tristan steps forward.
「No, it’s understandable. There is no meaning in attacking that point. The wiser choice is to let them break through and then close the hole rather than send any reinforcements. Besides…… the enemy squad’s movements are mismatched. They can’t get through the defensive encampment like that.」
Tristan was correct as the enemy soldiers eventually abandon the attack and retreat.
Our allies give chase after a successful defense, however, the enemy fled to their own defensive camps in time, preventing our allies from reaching.
「It’s because the distance of the camps are so close. As long as the defensive encampments remain intact, either side cannot pursue even after a failed attack. For that reason, the enemy is still attacking, albeit meaninglessly.」
Our allies send out their archers to fire arrows at the enemy camps, which the enemy quickly responds to with arrows of their own.
In a shootout, the receiving side with a shelter would always come out on top, so only our allies suffered casualties, forcing them to cease fire and run back to cover.
What a ridiculously frustrating battle.
When I observe my surroundings while patting Celia’s head, I find that battles were occurring in various places.
The problem was that they were all small scale and didn’t progress.
Since both sides constructed solid defensive structures, it wasn’t easy for either side to break through.
Sometimes, the attacking side was able to occupy a camp, but the defenses constructed with an excessive amount of labor and time were deep, allowing for connecting encampments to intercept the attacker and drive them out.
「This is irritating. If things continue at this rate, a castle would be built here.」
「Yes…… nobody seems close to winning or losing.」
Irijina folds her arms, unusually disappointed.
「Mumumu……the corpses are attracting crows! At least give them proper burials!」
Both sides have left many dead bodies unattended.
Nobody bothered to retrieve them.
「Look over there. They’re doing something interesting.」
Some allies surround several enemy soldiers who were late to escape.
The enemy soldiers dropped their weapons and knelt down in surrender, but the ally soldiers beat and kicked them regardless, eventually slaughtering them.
「Hmm, they were obviously surrendering…… the other side is doing it too, huh?」
I shift my attention to an area close to the enemy camp where an injured ally soldier was killed despite showing a lack of resistance.
「They lack military discipline!!」
Celia becomes indignant, whereas Leopolt stays calm.
「Neither the Goldonian army nor the South Yugurian army are savage by any means. This is proof that both sides have mobilized vast numbers of conscripts. It’s not that they are undisciplined, they simply do not have the disposition to respond to command.」
「Any way you look at it, war is cruel. Although pros who fight for money and promotions are not as bad as amateurs who fight based on emotions.」
Tristan covers his eyes, not wanting to watch.
「Then let us change that.」
I snatch the familiar pitch-black flag from one of the soldiers in the escort unit.
「Right! Pardon me!」
Guessing my intentions, Celia hops onto my shoulders and lifts the flag.
「Raise your flags. As high as you can.」
During the daytime, on an open field without any fog or mist, it would be quite difficult to miss the flags of 40 000 soldiers.
It started with small murmurs from one ally camp and it rapidly spread, generating a loud buzz throughout the ally encampments.
Eventually, the rumblings reached the enemy side.
It got to the point where tens of thousands of people were stirring loud enough for the ground to shake.
At that moment, cannons roared near General Erich’s flag.
Using the cannons as a signal, our allies let out resounding shouts.
「Reinforcements are here! It’s Lord Hardlett’s army!」
「Demon Hardlett has arrived! Victory is secured!」
「What incredible numbers. There are at least 10 000!」
Some of their reactions were exaggerated, but there is nothing more pleasing to hear than the sound of reinforcements, especially when everyone was exhausted
This must be the first time in a long time they heard good news.
Many soldiers excitedly welcome us.
On the other hand, terrified soldiers can be heard from the enemy camps.
「What a disaster…… the demon has finally made his way here……」
「I hear he wiped out the eastern army…… did he also annihilate the western army?」
「G-get your spirits up. If we fight the same way, we’ll be eaten…… females should hide their crotches and faces. If he catches a glimpse of a beauty, he’ll rape you to death!」
Their screaming is music to the ears of the reinforcing army.
We march slowly as if displaying the might of our forces.
Erich gallops over towards us.
His face remains strict in front of his subordinate, but I can tell he’s pleased.
Let’s break this stalemate already and open up the battlefield.
Erich doesn’t waste time with idle chatter and proceeds immediately to explaining the situation.
「Most of what I want to say was written on the document I sent――」
He sent something like that? Leopolt nods. Well, I don’t remember.
「What changed was the number of enemy troops. It increased from 150 000 to 250 000. An unbelievable total.」
Their pace of reinforcement is abnormal.
Is it really possible to add 100 000 in a little over two weeks?
「The Royal army has 100 000 and His Majesty ordered…… no, 90% threatened the lords to cooperate in gathering conscripts, bringing the current number to 150 000…… with a plan to further supplement the total to 200 000 within ten days. We’re going over the limit of how many we can recruit, but we need numbers more than anything in order to defend the warfront. It’s a real big help to have 40 000 soldiers on the level of a legitimate army like yours.」
We exchange a handshake.
「Instead of sending you straight to the frontlines, I believe it’s better if you inspect the battlefield with your own eyes first. I’ll have an escort unit accompany you to the western edge to――」
「Nuun. No need.」
A booming hoarse voice interrupts Erich.
「You can’t understand the enemy or the battle that way! The only method is to engage them!」
I forgot that Gildress, king of Aless, was also here.
Actually, that’s not it. How could I forget someone with such an overwhelming presence?
I chose to pretend he wasn’t there.
「Isn’t that right, my man?」
Gildress rests a hand on my shoulder and smiles from ear to ear.
Erich looks at me with a troubled expression until Leopolt steps forward, in which he begins talking about the inspection of the battlefield.
「Now, let’s go, man! New enemies! New battlegrounds! Doesn’t it make your heart dance!?」
「I will compile the report afterwards, I just ask that you don’t go too far.」
Leopolt tells us to get going.
「King of Aless, huh…… anyways, the air around you is also……thick.」
Let’s leave it there for now.
My army of 40 000 lines up in the center.
Our ally forces support us from the wings.
「We will now commence the eighth attack!」
Erich’s subordinate announces beside me.
「By the way, the enemy made 15 attacks.」
There’s a limit to how long a stalemate lasts.
「Begin. Keep pace with those next to you. Don’t scrimp on arrows.」
We march toward the enemy camp in a line formation.
「They’ve come. Archers, get in position! Don’t be scared!」
Enemy archers line up on their shooting platforms.
The platform is a typical defensive structure made by piling up dirt, giving extended range to arrows by way of the difference in height. Since it is essentially a mound of dirt, all it required was the earth dug out through the creation of trenches, nothing else. The issue with such a structure was the time and effort to construct it, although plenty of time and manpower was available.
「As usual, greet them with a rain of arrows when they enter your range! Prioritize archers first, then cavalry.」
Bowstrings were drawn as the enemy steadied their aim.
However, we do not let that deter us.
「Alright…… 50 steps…… 30 steps…… eh?」
Arrows rain down on the archers aiming at us.
The light-armored soldiers were easily shot down.
「Fire! Fire already!」
It’s simple, really. Our bow cavalry on the low ground had longer range than the enemy archers aiming from above.
Flustered, the arrows of the enemy land 20 steps in front of us.
This is the difference in range.
「Third platform on the right, silenced. Same with fourth on the left. Sixth and seventh on the right ran away.」
Celia provides detailed reports.
With no casualties on our side, we don’t stop moving.
「First and second on the left have roofs. We can’t hold them off with arrows alone.」
Luna informs me. Well, I know.
「Leave it to me!」
Gildress and Irijina shouts energetically.
Firstly, the Gildress-led Aless soldiers run toward the roofed platforms.
「Here they come! Loose, loose!」
「They’re light infantry! Easy targets.」
Arrows fly from the almost unharmed enemy archers.
The projectiles travel in an arc and fall down on the Aless unit.
Before the impact, the Aless soldiers align and raise their shields in unison.
A steady clanking of metal rings out as the arrows get deflected.
Like nothing happened, the Aless unit resumed their charge.
An identical attack was launched.
The result was the same, and that only increased the number of arrow fragments on the battlefield.
「Against similar militia, that would have worked.」
If the opponent was unskilled, propping up shields would slow them down.
When their movements dulled, more arrows would hit them, and no matter how much they fortified their defences, the amount of casualties would eventually grow until the entire unit fell apart.
「It only takes an instant for the Aless soldiers to lift their shields. Their speed of movement doesn’t change.」
With how much they’ve trained their bodies, they could wait until the last second before the arrows hit them to crouch behind their shields, then resume marching once the barrage ends. Arrows don’t do anything to slow them down.
My army has trained to do the same motion, but are unfortunately nowhere near as skilled as the Aless soldiers.
「To deal with that, you’d have to use staggered volleys and shoot in waves……」
The enemy gives out the order I would recommend.
However, that is a slightly worse move to make.
「Cease the unified barrage! Everyone, aim independently! Don’t give them room to defend!」
「That’s a big error.」
Celia’s exactly right.
The enemy archers offset their volleys at different intervals to eliminate the defence timing.
「Men of Aless. Gooo!!」
As soon as the enemy soldiers break up their barrage, the Aless soldiers charge forward with their shields held up.
Although they had their shields up, running would naturally create larger gaps.
That would in turn cause more casualties.
But since the enemy soldiers aren’t firing collectively anymore, their sporadic arrows don’t pose much of a threat.
The Aless soldiers can close the distance before taking any significant damage.
「To begin with, those guys won’t fall over even if a few arrows pierce through their arms and legs.」
「I think it’s wrong and against the rules though.」
Panicking because the incoming Aless soldiers didn’t falter at all, the enemy soldiers hastily tried to go back to a unified barrage, except they were too late.
「I’m the first one!!」
「Nay, the one who climbs the platform will be first.」
The Aless soldiers begin crawling up the shooting platform.
At this point, there is nothing the archers can do.
As soon as they got on top of the platform, the shooting stopped, then after some yelling and screaming, enemy soldiers began to fall off. It looks like things are under control there.
Meanwhile, Irijina is also doing well.
「Spread out to the left and right!」
Irijina leads the infantry of my personal army to another enemy camp.
Arrows are similarly fired at them, but the squad of soldiers splits in two while protecting themselves.
They didn’t split into two equal parts, it was closer to a 3:7 ratio.
「Their volley will be divided evenly.」
She must have seen that the enemy archers were a single unit.
It would require a certain amount of skill for that kind of composition to separate precisely into 30% on the right and 70% on the left.
Sure enough, an evenly-distributed volley sprayed on our ally force, suppressing the 30% on the left, but the barrage directed at the other 70% was not strong enough to immobilize them.
「Eei, it’s the right side! Everyone, aim at the right side!」
Orders were changed and the enemy redirected their arrows, which prompted Irijina’s squad to concentrate 90% of forces to the right.
This freed up the left side to advance.
When both sides were close, the rest of the distance was reduced in one sprint, and the infantry successfully reached the platform.
The first to arrive was Irijina. I could see her swinging her spear on top of the platform, defeating enemy archers and reinforcing infantry one after the other.
Her plan worked splendidly.
「South Yuguria soldiers should be well-trained. The proportion of amateurs here is greater than we thought.」
As I tried to grasp the situation, the fence opens up in the front and an enemy unit moves to support the soldiers on the shooting platform.
The force is composed of around 2000 infantry.
「I’ll go! Battalion, follow me!」
Celia jumps into action.
Celia’s battalion is an independent army of 200 each from the Eclair, Souffle, Tart, Waffle infantry companies and the Crepe cavalry company, and 100 from the commando unit for a total of 1000.
Celia arranges her four infantry squads unevenly to receive the enemy.
When they collided, the one who staggered was Celia’s unit.
The enemy’s movements were totally different from those on the shooting platform.
South Yuguria probably sent a legitimate army to back up their allies.
Obviously, attacks were focused heavily on the protruding parts of her army, but Celia withdrew without putting up any resistance.
When the bump in the formation gets pushed in until the battalion becomes a straight line, she commences a fierce counterattack, then when the enemy strengthens pressure with numbers, she pulls back the center again to create a convex shape…… then steadily retreats again.
「Commando unit, attack!」
Getting impatient, the enemy attempts to force their way forward, however Celia mounts and attack with the commando unit turned skirmishers or shows signs of a charge with the Crepe cavalry company.
That heightens the enemy’s concern towards their flank and rear, causing the pressure to the front to lighten up.
「Not bad, little miss.」
Yakov pops his head out.
Unlike Gildress, I actually forgot about him.
「Yeah. This is good.」
Celia’s battalion doesn’t have to defeat the enemy.
She’ll get full marks if she can hold out until we take control of the shooting platforms.
Gildress’s voice resounds.
Following the Aless unit, Irijina’s squad also plants a flag on their shooting platform.
In addition, Luna’s bow cavalry have shot down all the enemies in range.
Ally archers quickly climb up the conquered structures and the already powerful bow cavalry begin to fire from the tops of the platforms.
Rapid volleys fly unbelievable distances to reach the enemy unit fighting with Celia’s battalion, confusing them and forcing them to flee.
「This should take care of them. Let’s gather back up immediately.」
We took one card away from the enemy.
Where should we aim next?
Yakov lets out an “ah” to interrupt my thoughts.
「The little miss is giving chase! Look at her go……」
I see Celia starting to pursue the routed enemy.
Standard procedure is certainly to finish off stragglers and expand the victory.
「She’s too far out. If we don’t keep the main force in check, she might get surrounded.」
If we aren’t careful, Celia’s battalion would be isolated and wiped out.
Although we’ve beaten the enemy in front of us, we have to wait on standby for now.
「Well, she won in high spirits. This should be fine.」
Celia must want to show me a complete victory. Leopolt isn’t here to scold her either.
In the end, Celia returned after trouncing the 2000 soldiers, and by that time, the enemy had fortified the camps around the points we took control of.
It would be different if we were to take advantage of a chaotic situation, but otherwise, we have no chance of winning if we recklessly charge into such a deep encampment from the front.
At the very least, it isn’t something we should be doing if we simply wanted to learn about the enemy.
A messenger from headquarters is also on its way.
「I’m sure it’s from Leopolt. I don’t need to be told. We’re retreating.」
After launching a grand barrage of arrows at the enemy, we slowly pull back.
「Aegir-sama, I finished off 2000 enemies! I also eliminated the enemy commander!!」
I celebrate the return of the cheerful Celia by patting her on the head for a job well done.
Tristan shuffles over to replace Celia.
「I learned three pieces of beneficial information. One, the higher than expected relative density of militia. Two, in spite of that fact, their defensive camps have depth and length, meaning it’s impossible to breakthrough with a normal offense. ……and three, Celia-san’s riskiness.」
「Newly appointed commanders are prone to such behavior. They tend to focus heavily on accomplishments and become blind to what’s around them. This applies to all young commanders who first start out, so it can’t be helped. Little miss won easily because she’s skilled…… but be careful.」
Without any time to breathe, Erich summons us.
Apparently, he also wants to break the stalemate too.
–Third Person POV–
Frontal Warfront – South Yuguria Side.
A female gently hugs the shoulders of a man who was standing still in a daze.
「Christoph…… are you okay?」
「I’m fine, Zillia. I’m good…… always. Haha, I just knew this would happen one day.」
He watches as a black flag heads to Goldonia headquarters.
Other soldiers directed terrified and resentful gazes at the particular flag, but Christoph was the only one who looked at it with a mix of sadness and regret.
「Right. Why don’t we have someone send you back on account of an injury. Knowing how you always get hit somehow, it wouldn’t be a surprise to anybody.」
Christoph shook his head slowly and stared straight at Zillia, then declared in a firm tone.
「I can’t do that.」
Zillia trembled reflexively from the impact of the surprising statement.
「I can’t leave the woman I like behind and run away. No matter what.」
Zillia feels her heart pounding in her chest.
「I’ll fight anyone for your sake. Even if it means I’ll be branded a traitor……」
Christoph wraps his arm around the beet-red Zillia and returns to the tent.
As the half-naked woman pleaded “could you……wipe my body……hard……forcefully”, in between pants, he did so with a towel and then fell asleep.
Protagonist: Aegir Hardlett. 25 years old. Summer.
Status: Goldonia Kingdom Margrave. Great Feudal Lord of Eastern Area. Mountain Legend.
Friend of the Dwarves. Friend of the King of Aless. Dragon Slayer Hero.
Elf Mediator. Sex King of White City.
Myla (territory defense unit), Sekrit (false NTR), Leopolt (staff officer A), Tristan (staff officer B), Celia (battalion commander)
Yakov (commander), Irijina (commander), Luna (commander), Gido (escort unit)
Ivanna (on standby), Brynhildr (on standby), Annette (on standby)
Army – Port City: Stationed in Patena
Escort Unit: 100
Infantry: 10 000
Bow Cavalry: 8650
Independent Celia Squad: 950
Cannons: 50, Large Cannons: 25, Dwarven Cannons: 16, Field Artillery: 20, Chariots: 50
Reinforcements / Allied Forces
Aless Soldiers: 13 950
105 Army Corps: 4850
Battleship Suvorov (medium damage), Battleship Aless of Aless (heavy damage, reached the bottom)
Large Combat Ships: 2, Small Combat Ships: 8, Transport Ships: 20
Ally Forces: Frontal Warfront – Royal Army: 100 000 + Conscripts: 50 000 (expected to be strengthened by 100 000)
Frontal Warfront – Regular Soldiers: 60 000 + Conscripts: 190 000
River, West Coast – Regular Soldiers: 40 000 + Magrado Local Army: 30 000
Meldora Fleet: annihilated, only a few small ships remaining
Assets: -10 000 gold
Sexual Partners: 783, children who have been born: 69 + 565
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