Book 5, Chapter 60

Heart Attack

One of the totemic warriors rushed straight up to Richard, screaming loudly as he raised his battleaxe to attack. However, Richard took a single step forward and performed a backhand slice with Carnage before stepping back to his original position. The man tried to bring down the axe, but found it becoming heavier and heavier.

Eventually, the axe fell to the ground with its blade getting buried within the earth. A thin red gash split open on the warrior’s throat before bursting into a fountain of blood. A gargling squeal rang out as the man tried to cover the wound with his hands, but eventually he fell to the ground with a muffled thud. The braids fell across Richard’s boots.

Richard didn’t even take a second look at the warrior, just raising his hand to wipe a few drops of blood off his face as he continued to send hundreds of commands on the battlefield. The shadowspear knights were an absolute machine of war, systematically taking the lives of the local warriors.

In only a few minutes, the war had come to an end. The 300 shadowspear knights had killed the totemic warriors with less than ten casualties, with the rune knights not moving at all. Stardragon froze in shock; he had never imagined that his men would be ended so quickly. However, the cold wind blowing on his face reminded him that he wasn’t stuck in an illusion.

Just as Norland used rune knights to suppress saints, the Resting Orchid Plane used its totemic warriors. When Gaton’s rune knights had first tried crossing the Godtear Rift, it was these warriors that had stopped their advance. At the cost of a dozen soldiers, one could even kill off one of the Norland saints. This was why Stardragon hadn’t been too afraid of the invaders before.

However, the situation was now completely different. The elite forces had just been killed, and the saints from the fortress who had come to reinforce only saw their army picked clean. Even worse, they didn’t realise as they entered the range of Richard’s rune knights.

Fifty rune knights picked up another set of javelins, coating the spears in energy as they shot them through the air. Every saint had at least ten spears rushing towards him, and before they could even flee countless spells crashed down from everywhere. Three of the four saints plummetted instantly.

Stardragon roared in horror, rushing to join the fray as purple flames batted away at least thirty of the javelins and all spells within a thirty-metre radius. However, this gave Kaloh the opening to finally land a breath attack, wrapping him up in crimson flames. The other half whose focus had been consistently on him moved as well, sending fifty more javelins his way.

The javelins were beautiful as ever, the differently coloured energies guiding them making for a beautiful image of birds flying through the sky. Stardragon roared thunderously, purple flames blazing as his aura blasted out with renewed power, but there were far too many spears and some of them struck true. By this time, the other batch of rune knights had already drawn out their next javelins!

However, even more dangerous than the javelins was the constant barrage of spells and curses. Stardragon felt his heart clench in alarm for a moment, causing him to look down on the battlefield to meet a pair of amber eyes. A gaze as clear as crystal had locked onto him, almost seeming capable of seeing through spacetime itself.

All rationality told him that this was only a level 16 priestess, someone he didn’t need to worry about at all. There were even two others just like her that didn’t seem remotely as dangerous. However, Stardragon didn’t think twice as he grabbed the two closest saints, turning into a meteor of purple as he shot away. Dozens of shining javelins followed behind, like wolves chasing their prey.

Flowsand sighed and shook her head. She hadn’t expected this enemy to be so perceptive as to realise the moment she started to cast the Lens of Time. Although the spell had a high chance of failing when cast on a legendary opponent, success would have given them the chance to kill him outright.

Still, the battle was a great success. Stardragon only managed to save two saints at the cost of serious injuries, and was forced to escape and leave the fortress to now fend for itself. The two others screamed in pain as volleys of javelins and spells crashed into them, leaving them with not even a corpse. One had managed to kill off a rune knight, but his eyes widened in despair as Nyra revived the dead knight right before the barrage got to him.

Richard was in no hurry to march on the bridge fortress, instead taking over the palace that Stardragon had left behind. There was no resistance; the maids and servants walked out silently, awaiting their fates. The totemic warrior camp was a bit more trouble. Each totemic warrior had three or four servants at minimum, and every one of these was either a powerful warrior in their own right or a totemic warrior in training. They had no lack of courage, and were willing to fight to the death for their cause.

However, there was only one end in the face of the shadowspear knights. These drones had no feelings, no fear, and no respect for their enemies. There were only two types of creatures to them; alive and dead.

Once the palace was looted, Richard had his subordinates pile up firewood and set the entire structure aflame. The fire was particularly dazzling in the depths of the night, and he could already imagine the shock of seeing the residence of one’s leader being desecrated in such a way. Regardless of whether those at the fort assumed Stardragon was dead or had run away, morale would instantly plummet.

There were currently 40,000 soldiers guarding in and around the fortress, with an equal number accessible within a hundred-kilometre range. It would be quite expensive to kill them all to march through, so Richard had decided to instead strike at the spiritual backbone of the locals. He had underestimated Stardragon’s strength a little, but the same went the other way around as well. The overwhelming force never left the legendary powerhouse with a chance to use his ability, making the fight seem far more one-sided than it was.

Now that there was no need to keep things secret, Richard had four snow owls fly high into the sky and scout nearby. While his subordinates built a few bonfires to warm themselves up and rest, he got an idea of the terrain ahead and mapped a route for them to take. A short while later, the army set off for the bridge fortress.

This stronghold, all the way from its inception, had been built to guard the northern side of the continent from the encroaching invaders in the south. The generals who were in charge had never assumed the rear defences would be a problem either; if it came to it, Stardragon’s presence was the greatest protection of all. Nobody had expected Richard to transfer a sizeable force across the Godtear Rift and then crush the pillar of their defence.

When they arrived at the rear of the stronghold, Richard just sighed. The gate here was in the traditional style of the Resting Orchid Plane, covered in a large engraving of a fierce snowbear, but at ten metres tall and eight metres wide it was just far too big. There were no battlements along the walls, and two smaller arches had been placed on each side of the gate for pedestrians to walk through.

The fortress was brightly lit, and one could hear the flustered soldiers running back and forth as hysterical voices constantly barked out orders. Soldiers had lined up on top of the walls, watching Richard’s knights in silence. Those who had already gathered were veterans with years of experience, and would always calm down when war was imminent.

Panic was inevitable. Richard’s forces had appeared out of nowhere and there was now a fire burning where Stardragon’s palace used to be. The ferocity of the invading demons had long since been written into legend here, so even the bravest of warriors would feel uneasiness in their hearts.

Richard slowly urged his unicorn forward, catching up to Tiramisu, “Tell them that their legend fled and two saints were killed. This will be their only chance to surrender.”

“Yes, Master.” Tiramisu had an unparalleled advantage in volume. His large body and two heads already made him impossibly loud, and once amplified by magic a thunderous roar immediately enveloped the fortress. The younger soldiers were left quivering in their boots.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: OMA

Edited By: Theo