Book 2, Chapter 117

An Ambush In The Dark

Once they unleashed their wind blades, the wind wolves fell back to the rock formation and returned to position. They looked towards the sky, letting out desolate howls.

Ten or so of the wind wolves were marked with special colours that glowed in the dark. This allowed the chaotic camp to quickly enter formation, as the half-orcs, barbarians, and desert people found their respective wolves and conglomerated around them. The entire army assembled quickly into battalions, each led by a knight. The knights would command the troops, while the wind wolves showed them their targets.

Even as the troops were finding their positions, Gangdor and the two trolls started roaring in anticipation of the incoming cavalry. Their immense strength allowed them to be fearless in the face of the opposing horse bandits who were below level 10.

The axe in Gangdor’s hands glowed with magical light; it was taken after Schitich had been killed. As long as one could keep the axe above ground level, they could easily split apart the oncoming riders. This new weapon exponentially increased the brute’s capabilities, making him a meat grinder on the battlefield.

At the same time, the hammers Medium Rare and Tiramisu wielded also boasted of immense might. Tiramisu remembered to play his part as a mage, casting Bull’s Strength and Stone Skin on himself and his brother before hand. It was a simple yet effective strategy, increasing their attack and defence to make them huge threats on the battlefield.

The three of them were like an ocean reef, standing strong despite the surging tide of enemies. Anyone who encountered them was instantly destroyed, their formations crumbling apart. However, most of the oncoming army bypassed them, heading straight for the heart of the battlefield.

In the meanwhile, a magic ball of grey light exploded out on the battlefield, Zendrall’s Strengthen Fear spell. It sent more than ten of the oncoming riders into chaos, slowing the incoming wave,

At that point, Waterflower stealthily sneaked out from behind a canyon. She let out a piercing shriek, killing intent radiating fear in all directions. However, the effects were limited. Only ten or so warhorses that were close to her were startled, causing the riders to stop and hinder their comrades’ charge. However, the rest of the horse bandits were largely unaffected. Closer inspection would reveal that the bandits and horses all had their ears stuffed with cloth. Evidently, they were prepared for this line of attack. It was something they had learnt from experience, where they had lost many lives to the young lady’s shriek.

Thankfully, Waterflower’s move was not without gain. She had made use of the momentary stall to take out two soldiers who’d fallen close to her, before retreating into the darkness once more.

A large majority of the riders didn’t have the time to care about the girl, continuing to charge towards the camp. The horses at the front even leapt up, charging into the midst of battle.

Two novice knights skillfully laid their swords in the path of a leaping horse, causing it to let out a huge cry before losing balance. However, it landed in an area that had the most concentration of humans, and a few desert people who couldn’t escape in time bore the brunt of the damage. Many perished.

More and more riders rushed towards the camp, only to be met with three fireballs shot out by Richard. The fireballs lined up in a row, exploding abruptly to cover an area that was ten metres wide and thirty metres long. This wasn’t the end of the damage, however. Even if the horses’ ears had been stuffed, they were not blindfolded. The flames started the creatures that were nearby, creating chaos on the periphery of the flames.

The void created by the spells was immediately occupied by Richard’s troops. Two wind wolves led thirty-odd barbarians and half-orcs into forming a living wall, using their strong bodies to block the knights who couldn’t stop their momentum in time. Even though that sent many of them flying back with bloody mouths, it managed to put an end to the charge.

Two other wind wolves led the desert warriors who’d mounted their own horses to flank on the left and right of the gap, immediately splitting a third of the attacking troops off from the main body. At the back of the camp, the remaining wind wolves were converging with their troops. It would be a mere few minutes before they assembled into a tight, impenetrable formation.

The horse bandits were dauntless and experienced. However, faced with a disciplined army that had the necessary preparation, they would only end up massacred. Zendrall repeatedly chanted a few spells, sending warriors of darkness out one after the other. He called three of them out at a time, casting a spell on them to boost their powers. He then sent them forward to charge into the enemy.

That had been Richard’s idea as well, and it had proven effective in actual battle. Groups of three warriors of darkness were essentially machines of slaughter when faced with ordinary enemies.

A deep yet melodious voice rang out in everyone’s ears, its tempo fast yet stable. The impassioned rhythm brought forth the last dregs of one’s power, allowing the soldiers to fight longer without growing fatigued. Their reactions grew nimble, and their strength increased. Warsongs that could stimulate one’s potential were the reason bards were so important in warfare. Even though the reasoning might seem a little far-fetched, it made Olar an indispensable part of the army.

Elven warsongs weren’t passed down very often, normally only mastered by shamans. Even a grade 1 song could boost one’s strength and agility by 10% or so, and when applied to an entire army that was a huge addition to capability. The bard didn’t disclose where he had learnt the warsong from, but they were almost as effective as those of a true shaman. His rich bloodline and abilities allowed him to boost the army’s strength and agility by 8%, in a range of about fifty metres. This was a much larger area than a group buffing spell from a mage.

Given that Richard had about 500 subordinates, Olar’s contribution to their capabilities far surpassed that of any soldiers. Only after a few more levels would Richard and Flowsand have the group buffs to compete.

Richard quickly took command of his troops, sending spells in all directions. These were mostly foundational, to supplement other spells he would cast in the future. In a battlefield of thousands, it wasn’t easy to turn around a situation with even fifty direwolves, forget a mere five. Every second he had to observe the battlefield, analysing the situation before he sent commands to the wind wolves he was linked to. He was constantly mobilising and redirecting different groups, many times having to shout his commands to achieve his goals.

Under that meticulous command, the chaotic battlefield instantly stabilised and skewed towards Richard’s army as it slowly exhibited its prowess.

Zendrall had already sent three groups of undead warriors out into the battlefield, and a fourth was on its way. The two trolls were at the peak of their ferocity, running around the chaotic battlefield as they wreaked havoc with their sturdy bodies and heavy hammers. Gangdor was also drenched in blood, having returned to Richard’s side after a large group had broken through the front lines. He hadn’t faltered despite a rain of attacks, leaving a mountain of corpses in his wake.

Waterflower was like a ghost, occasionally, popping out of the darkness with a breathtaking attack. Every time the Shepherd of Eternal Rest flashed on the battlefield, one of the stronger bandits would perish.

As the battle tipped in their favour, the army converged and dispersed to eventually form ten or so small teams that served different functions. They weaved between the opponents under Richard’s command, taking many out before returning to Flowsand to be healed. After some time, they would join the battle once more. Once the advantage was on their side, there was no going back.

However, an inconspicuous bandit suddenly took out a whistle and blew on it resolutely. The piercing sound resounded throughout the area, and the bandits turned around and fled at top speed as they showcased their prowess at sudden attacks and retreats. Only ten or so of them lagged behind, and they were quickly attacked and kicked off their horses.

Once the battle came to a close, Richard could estimate the losses on both sides without even inspecting the battlefield. The 500 bandits had left behind a hundred or so corpses, with more than ten heavily injured warriors that would soon be put to death. On their side, a little more than ten people had perished, most of them desert warriors. There were also sixty-odd injured soldiers, mostly barbarians and half-orcs.

Because Flowsand was around, the victims needed only one or two days to recuperate fully. However, this would quickly consume her mana. The opponents definitely wouldn’t give them the time to recuperate after that.

This was the wolves’ strategy. Many of them pounced down on the army and left numerous small wounds, some trying to chomp down on larger chunks. Even though some of them were killed, it was of no concern to the entire pack. This prey was always smaller than them, and many of the wolves didn’t mind their numbers being reduced anyway.

Nobody had a single ounce of sympathy for the bandits who had died at the army’s hands. Not even their peers who had similarly been killed would care, because of one simple line of reasoning— every man down was one less person to share the loot with. It meant everyone else got more in the end.

Richard patrolled the campsite, only to find that it had become a land of massacre. The soldiers were already experienced with cleaning up battlefield, expertly inspecting the corpses and looting anything of value. They then sent the corpses to Zendrall, allowing the necromancer to use them to summon undead.

The desert warriors used their machetes to cut down all the horses that were heavily injured, having them collapse at the side. They then cut the creatures’ veins open, draining the blood into buckets before filling numerous cups and distributing them to everyone.

Someone passed Richard a cup as he passed, and without even looking at it much he gulped the contents down. The blood was viscous and smelled of iron, but at the same time was scalding hot. Just like the red blood that this entire area had been dyed in.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Jessa

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA