The old man watched on as Richard’s men took care of the rat. It was only when all the horses were prepared and Richard was about to leave that he sighed, “Young man, what purpose do you have in coming to Bluewater Oasis?”
Richard smiled elegantly, “Business. I hope to strike it rich.”
“That’s great!” the old man nodded, “There’s plenty of opportunities to make money here.”
“I hope so, but right now I have to leave this place. Before I can start my business, there are some issues I need to take care of.” Richard gave the man a mage’s bow, mounting his horse and vanishing into the night with his party.
Once they left the city, Richard and the rest made a beeline for their camp. The moment they entered, Richard saw a group of half-orcs eating and making merry around a bonfire. He kicked them up and roared, “All of you, up. NOW! Go don your armour and get your weapons, I want to see everyone ready for battle in ten minutes! We have a fight coming!”
Medium Rare responded from inside a tent. He walked out with a huge ladle in hand, the aroma of meat assaulting one’s nostrils. He swung the thing around eagerly, asking, “Boss, what kind of battle is it? Will we need to run around, or are we going to defend?”
Richard swiftly walked to his side, poking the troll’s fat belly, “Go, wear your thickest armour. Get a large hammer and tower shield ready, we’ll be standing ground!”
A look of delight flooded the troll’s face, and he beat his chest hard, “Don’t worry, boss! I’ll smash them like patties!” He hated fights that needed him to move. His armour weighed a few hundred kilograms, and even with his strength that was enough to compromise his speed. On the other hand, when he was just standing ground the combination of his heavy armour, buffing magic, and war songs was enough to break formations entirely by himself.
“Prepare yourselves, we’ll be facing a cavalry troop. The leader will most likely be level 12, but there’s also a chance that he’ll be level 14. There will be a hundred of them.
“You lot! Go to the woodpile and sharpen the stakes. Bury them in the ground, sharp end facing out with no more than a metre and a half exposed. I want a stake every five metres!” Richard walked through the entire camp, rallying the troops one by one. He also gave them instructions and orders.
The camp entered a frenzy, but in the short period of time a couple hundred stakes had been placed all over the side of the camp that faced the city. These stakes were designed to hold off cavalry. Richard’s soldiers were quite experienced, so they hadn’t sat down doing nothing when they got to camp. They organised troops to go into the nearby forests, gathering wood to bring it back to camp. A small portion was to be used as fuel, while the rest was cut up and placed to make a fence at some point. There wasn’t enough time to do that anymore, so they instead used them as a line of obstacles.
The stakes weren’t everywhere. Even a soldier with mediocre skill could maneuver his horse past them without getting hurt, but if he tried to rely on the speed of his horse to try and ram through the stakes it would be impossible.
Richard had ten knights, all level 10. These fellows were the real deal, able to fight both on foot and on horseback. Although there were only ten of them, they were formidable. They were divided into two groups to guard opposite sides of the camp, with a wind wolf in each.
The remaining wind wolves were dispatched alongside the half-orc warriors, every team consisting of five orcs and one wolf. The orcs were to follow the wind wolf and attack the designated target. This allowed Richard to minimise the number of direct orders he gave out, only needing to control the wind wolves with his mind.
A short while later, the ground started to tremble as neighs and warcries rang out from the direction of the city. The camps within a kilometre were alerted, their guards quickly clutching their weapons as they nervously stared in the direction of the city. A few of the clever ones lit torches under their banners, preventing any friendly fire under the dark night sky. The stronger camps weren’t nervous, but they strengthened their guard anyway.
A fierce cavalry rushed out of the city, following the trail left behind by Richard’s group as they hurried towards the camp. There were obviously a few good scouts in their midst.
There were more than eighty soldiers in the troop. Their leader was tall and strong, riding a black warhorse that looked to have demonic heritage. This was one of the authorities of Bluewater Oasis— the Two-Headed Dragon, Schitich.
This was less than half of Schitich’s total army, it seemed like he hadn’t been able to gather as many men in such a short notice. His lair may have been in the city, but that did not mean all his forces were concentrated there.
A 200-man troop in dragon formation could also be seen moving over from the city. This was Schitich’s infantry, but given the several kilometres of distance of the camp from the city the battle would likely have ended before they even got here.
This was exactly what Richard wanted, eroding his opponents’ power over several waves of battle. He knew that it would be difficult to gather a full army in such short notice.
Richard did not have the lights in the camp put out. Even if vision wasn’t ideal, the oncoming army could easily see the stakes that had been prepared for them. Although the core of his own party wasn’t afraid of a battle in the night, a large number of the human and orc warriors did not have this capability. Richard didn’t hope for these stakes to cause much damage, only having them placed to stop the enemy from charging them down.
Seeing the obstacles at the front of the camp and having learnt a lesson from the team that got destroyed at the bar, Schitich was in no hurry for his soldiers to rush forward. He instead reined his horse in, stopping in front of the stakes and raising his right hand. His troops started adjusting formation, coming up to a neat horizontal line behind him.
Schitich cast a gloomy glare at Richard who was at the centre of the field, crying out coldly, “Kid, tell me where you’re from! If your father is rich enough you can surrender without any resistance. I’ll only chop off an arm and a leg and let your father ransom you back!”
Richard laughed, pointing at Schitich’s face with contempt, “You’re a nobody, why would I be afraid of you? Forget my family, look at my age and status as a mage. Use your brain, do you think my teacher will forgive you if you mess with me? Don’t assume the Bloodstained Lands are any big deal!”
The man’s expression warped. Richard was not wrong; any mage capable of casting grade 5 spells at such an age would be a notable force in any large empire. Richard’s teacher had to be a grand mage at minimum, and could very well be a key person in the mainland. This troop seemed unusually strong as well.
Even if a grand mage couldn’t personally sweep through the Bloodstained Lands, a mage’s position and capabilities did not rely solely on their personal power. With their heavy control over the trade of magical equipment, a grand mage would be perfectly capable of offering a high reward to topple him from his position in the Bloodstained Lands.
Even 10,000 gold was nothing to a mage. However, as far as Schitich was concerned that was enough to have him fight for his life. Besides, whoever killed him would also obtain the favour of a grand mage.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translated By: Styles
Edited By: Theo
TLC'ed By: OMA