Book 6 Chapter 12.5

Book 6 Chapter 12.5 - Sacrifice

Combat hall was a much better way to describe Murray’s dedicated combat room. Aside from the spacious area and lavish decorations, the only thing in this hall related to the word ‘combat’ was the ten meter long, five meter wide sand table representing Sun Empire’s northern territory. Xilur City was perfectly situated at the edge of this sand table.

Su examined the vast and complex terrain stretching between Maca and Xilur, silently thinking to himself.

Several minutes later, the combat hall’s doors were pushed open. Kebile walked in quietly, standing in front of the sand table. This was the first time he saw such a large tactical sand table, his eyes couldn’t help but light up as a result. Two minutes later, the second suzerain walked into the combat hall. Ten minutes later, all six suzerains were present, including one who hadn’t fully recovered from his injuries yet.

When they saw Su who was concentrated on the sand table, all of the suzerains shivered inwardly, knowing that the few days of peace were finally over. What followed, was war.

When he saw that all of the suzerains were present, Su raised his head, reaching out his hand to receive a copper indicating stick. He pointed towards Xilur City and said, “The enemies are coming from here.”

Then, the copper stick moved about on the sand table, drawing out a winding path through the various terrains, and then stopped at a place not far from Maca City. “This is the enemy’s most likely army itinerary. We will face the attack right here.”

“Lamar, bring a hundred soldiers to watch this place. Julio, defend this place. Xarayes, bring eighty people to guard this area.” Su named three suzerains, marking out three spots with the stick on the sand table for them to separately defend. With this, the three suzerains would form a curved defensive line, defending one side of Maca City.

“The others will follow me. Right now, all of you will return, gather every soldier you can find. Make your preparations, we are setting out at ten in the morning.”

After giving the order, Su ended the military conference, not giving the suzerains the opportunity to speak or refute.

Not long after the suzerains left, Maca City became extremely noisy, the roaring voices of suzerains sounding in army camps one after another. The soldiers were dragged out of their beds, slipped a weapon, and then the suzerains used their boots and whips to gather the muddle-headed soldiers in the public square. The assistants were already waiting, the dozen or so barrels of ice water ensuring that these soldiers would walk out from Maca City wide awake.

Su stood in the combat hall alone, staring at the sand table with an almost tangible gaze. His eyes started from Xilur City, and then gradually deviated from the path he originally drew out, following a convenient and faster route to Maca City. When he got close to Maca City, his line of sight drew out a circle, turning around, and then heading north, entering Maca City from a different direction. This path would perfectly avoid the encampment of one of the suzerains. However, Su was extremely clear on how limited a single suzerain’s use was.

Right at this time, a light but rhythmic knocking sounded on the door. The only one who could knock like this was the elder previously assigned over this viceroy manor.

After the old man entered, he spoke in his usual calm and collected tone. “Lord, the manager of the breeding base has just sent a report that the the five breeding tanks had been opened at the same time, the creatures being bred within them all disappearing.”

Su didn’t even raise his head. “En, got it. Tell him to prepare the raw materials and carry out another round of cultivation with the same recipe.”

When he saw Su’s completely disinterested attitude, the elder put on a pensive look, and then silently withdrew.

---

Outside Xilur City, the temporary barracks were completely silent, army tents linked up one after another. From the distance, it looked as if a layer of plants covered the desolate earth. A free soldier slept in every tent; regardless of whether they believed the upcoming battle would be easy and relaxed, these experienced free soldiers seized every moment they could to rest so they could be as ready as they could be on the battlefield. Even the easiest battles had casualties, and no one wanted to be one of the dead.

The army camp and surroundings were extremely quiet, without even a patrol set up. This was within Xilur City’s territory, so who dared infiltrate or even attack this army camp with over six hundred free soldiers? Moreover, everyone knew that the Red Duke himself was precisely in this army camp.

Inside the camp, only the large military tent at the very center was brightly lit. Arranged atop the table at the center of the military tent was an exceptionally fine and detailed northern region map. The map was made of leather, the ends of the painting scroll carefully held by gold-gilded copper rods, perfectly protecting its relatively weak materials, yet able to roll it up when needed. The map’s drawing was exquisite, the precision extremely high, something only higher level nobility could use.

The Red Duke stared fixedly at the map, remaining completely silent. The seven generals stood at the side, tall and majestic.

The duke slowly reached out a hand, pointing towards Xilur City on the map, and then he slowly moved north. “We will advance through this path.”

The generals silently remembered this itinerary, but none of them knew that this path was practically identical to the one Su drew out on the sand table!

“If the other party knows anything about military affairs, then they would set up a position here to intercept us.” The duke’s finger pointed out a location, matching up with the position Su ordered his main forces to defend.

“However!” The Red Duke chuckled in an arrogant and mysterious manner, and then said, “It obviously won’t be that easy! Once the front line suffers a defeat, our enemy might immediately choose to run, and by then, we might not be able to catch him. That is why I will personally lead those people through a different path straight towards his nest!”

The Red Duke didn’t explain the path that he chose, nor would the generals ask. It was to the extent where none of them would dare show any doubt towards the Red Duke’s decisions. Regardless of whether it was the duke’s own abilities, or the thirty battle hardened bodyguards, none of them could be looked down on, let alone the fact that there were still ‘those people’, the temple’s red-robed warriors.

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