Chapter 209. Unexpected Enemy

Rat-a-tat-tat!

Troll Riders were quickly approaching. 

"Enemies at the rear!"

"Ooh, reinforcements have arrived!"

The two sides' reactions obviously ran counter to each other.

"Shakara!" Razul smiled.

He could clearly see Shakara leading the Troll Riders here.

"Reinforcements have arrived. Everyone, keep pushing just a little longer!" Turkavan said passionately.

"Ooooh!"

The trolls' morale shot up instantly. After all, they now had hope that they could pierce through the perimeter!

"Balduk! Please stop them with the mercenary squad!" Doran yelled.

"Understood. Mercenary squad, follow me!" Balduk led the mercenary squad and intercepted the Troll Riders.

"Mumugul, let's hurry up and finish off the main force!"

"Understood. Commanders, kill the trolls ASAP!"

The orcs and elves put the pressure on.

But losing the mercenary squad greatly weakened their defensive perimeter. There was a bigger problem though; they'd lost the gold rank mercenaries that were capable of fighting off the Troll Champions.

"Get through!"

"Die!"

"Uhaahp!"

The Troll Champions, Turkavan, Ursac, Angol, Baltu, and Raikavan showed off their herculean strength.

Though the Nigel Knight Order and Doran were motivated by anger, the trolls were slowly getting through the perimeter.

'Damn it. We shouldn't have sent Balduk's entire force to deal with the Troll Riders. We should've sent the Nigel Knight Order instead!' Doran bit his lip.

The alliance's weakness was showing. Because they didn't have a centralized command structure, they couldn't shift their troops around that well. 

Thus, they'd ended up sending way too many troops to deal with the Troll Riders.

As a result...

"We've gotten through!"

"Run! We have to get to Ankaro Fortress!"

Razul and the Troll Champions yelled, and ran as fast as they could. 

"Do whatever it takes to stop them!" Doran yelled desperately, but it was already too late. 

A crack in a dam would cause it to collapse instantly. In the same way, once the trolls pierced through a section of the perimeter, the perimeter completely lost all effectiveness.

"Chase them!"

"Kill them as fast as you can!"

Mumugul and Echo yelled.

The trolls ran while the alliance pursued; it was chaos.

* * *

The trolls returned to their main base, Ankaro Fortress.

Only 30,000 trolls had made it home. They'd lost 20,000 soldiers in just one battle.

If Shakara and his Troll Riders hadn't reinforced them and prevented the alliance from pursuing them, then they would've sustained even more casualties. 

"Thanks, Shakara," Razul said honestly.

"I apologize for arriving so late. I should've gotten here earlier..." Shakara bowed his head. They'd lost several of their brothers. It was such a waste.

"No, no." Razul patted his shoulder and took a look around. "I don't see Nergal or Baltu," Razul said regretfully.

"They fought bravely, and died like true warriors. They've returned to our ancestors' embrace," Turkavan said.

Kang Oh had killed Nergal, and Baltu had died trying to pierce through the perimeter.

"Now... what do we do?" Angol said, sporting a mournful expression.

"We reinforce our defenses and wait for our opportunity."

The Anti-Ingrit Alliance had already surrounded Ankaro Fortress. Normally, they'd exit the fortress and kill all of them in one fell swoop, but they didn't have the manpower to do so right now.

"Understood."

"Good job everyone. Get some rest. But it's too early to relax! Let the regular warriors rest too. However, double the men that are stationed at the ramparts."

The alliance wouldn't attack immediately. After all, they too had just fought an intense, exhausting battle.

They would also let their warriors rest, so that they could fight properly later. 

"Yes, sir!"

"Go on."

Once they left his abode, Razul released all of his pent up anger. 

"Uhaaaahk!" He threw his skull necklace onto the floor and stomped on it.

The humiliation of defeat! He gritted his teeth. Failing to realize his ambition made him feel so bitter. 

"Damn it all! Shit!" He began throwing every item inside the room.

Thump! 

His room had become a mess, yet he continued. Razul grabbed the bronze gargoyle, but stopped right before throwing it.

He heard whispers from the statue.

'Razul. There's still a way for you to achieve your dream. Accept me. If you do, then you'll gain the power to realize your ambition.'

His eyes began to shake violently. Razul felt so very thirsty; he wanted to lick the statue to sate his thirst. 

'Razul... Razul... Razul...'

Whispers. The whispers were so sweet, so enticing.

Ultimately, Razul gave in.

He bowed down and greedily licked the statue.

* * *

The leaders of the Anti-Ingrit Alliance were gathered for a meeting.

The topics of the meeting were as follows:

Were they going to attack Ankaro Fortress or retreat?

"Let's attack the fortress. We'll be able to get rid of the troll threat forever," Doran said strongly.

The elves were of the opinion that they should continue fighting until the very end.

"Hmm. It'd be hard to get through the fort's defenses. Retreating is a viable option, since the trolls have lost so much of their strength," the golden-horned Balduk calmly said. 

On the other hand, he believed that they should end the battle here.

"Pathetic. If we give them time to regroup, then they'll burn down someone else's village and kill their people. Don't you remember what happened to us?"

"I do, but do you really think we'll be able to conquer Ankaro Fortress?" Balduk asked.

It was too difficult to conquer Ankaro Fortress with the forces they had at hand.

"It's possible."

"How?"

"If the orcs reinforce us with their remaining 20,000 troops, and we gather more warriors from the western tribes, then we can do it."

Balduk and Doran simultaneously looked at Mumugul.

"If we decide to fight, then the orcs will be there. But if we decide to back off, then we'll leave," Mumugul said.

He remained neutral. 

"Then let's fight," Doran said.

"We have to think about this carefully. Can we really conquer the fortress? We may be unable to conquer the fort, and just lose several troops in the process. Then, with our forces weakened, the trolls may mount a counterattack," Balduk's right-hand man, who was completely covered in white fur, said. 

"We'll win no matter what. If I have to give up my life to do it, then so be it," Echo said. His eyes were absolutely murderous.

"We shouldn't think so emotionally..." Balduk's right-hand man said. 

"What do you know? Have you ever felt the pain of seeing the village you grew up in burned to cinders?" Echo snarled.

"Haa. That's why I'm saying..."

It didn't seem like the meeting would end any time soon. No conclusion had been reached either.

* * *

Kang Oh was resting in one of the alliance's tents.

Asu sent him a message.

- Oppa.

- Huh? I thought you'd be really busy lately. How did you manage to log in?

Soo Ah's group, Triple Lower, had made a comeback with their recent album, so she'd been really busy lately.

To his disappointment, Kang Oh hadn't been able to see her lately, whether it be in game or in person.

- I called you, but you wouldn't pick up. I logged in to yell at you!

- Ah, sorry.

- I'm just joking. I just wanted to talk to you, so I logged in for a second. I have to leave soon, but I wanted to talk to you a little bit before I go. 

- It's nice to hear your voice again. By the way, your recent song is amazing. I listen to it first thing in the morning, and I listen to it again before I sleep.

- Thanks. Hehe.

- I miss you.

He was being honest. Kang Oh really wanted to see her happy, smiling face again.

- Let's meet up once I'm done promoting my album!

- It's a promise.

- Oh, by the way, my group wants to meet you.

- That's fine by me. It's a chance to meet the members of the most popular girl group, Triple Lower!

- Alright. It'll just be the two of us at first. I'll figure things out with them later.

- Sure.

- I think I have to go now.

- Let's do our best!

- Ok, Oppa!

The message window informed him that Asu had logged off. 

"Tch."

'I wanted to talk to her some more...' Kang Oh looked disappointed.

"Alright then, let's get back to work." Kang Oh stood up, and dumped all the loot he'd picked up from the previous battle onto the floor. 

"Eat it." He extended Demon Sword Ubist. Munch, munch. Ubist greedily devoured all of the equipment.

The darkness coiled around Kang Oh's arm, as if saying 'I'm still hungry.'.

"I don't have any more, you glutton."

The darkness gently let him go.

Kang Oh pulled out some tools and performed maintenance on the Baramut set and both of his demon swords. 

He oiled and rubbed them with a clean cloth, causing them to shine.

Then...

It suddenly got noisy outside.

"The enemy's here!"

"Prepare for battle!"

"What?" Kang Oh quickly equipped himself.

'The trolls have ambushed us?'

He exited the tent.

"Get a grip! Mercenary squad, get into formation!" Balduk ordered.

Mumugul and Doran ordered their own troops. 

"What happened? Did the trolls launch a surprise attack?" Kang Oh approached Balduk and asked.

"It's even worse." Balduk's expression was grave.

"Why's that?"

"We've gotten word from our northern scouts. A monster army is advancing southward."

"A monster army? Why are they coming all of a sudden..." Kang Oh tilted his head.

"There's a bigger problem here. The demonic beasts, Mukarga, Helpara, and Volcaine. Have you heard of them before?"

"No."

"In the past, they turned the west into a sea of flames."

"And?"

"They were created by Evil God Worshippers!"

"Which means?"

"The Evil God Worshippers have appeared."

In the past, the Evil God Worshippers and their monster army had slaughtered and tortured the non-human species in the west.

That tragedy was passed down from generation to generation, so the non-human species here all remembered it. Thus, it was only natural that Balduk's expression had turned so serious.

Whereas...

"Hmm." Kang Oh smirked.

A monster army... it gave him another chance to have some fun!

* * *

"They're coming." Turkavan, who was watching the vast plains from above the castle walls, pointed north. 

"Is this really the right decision?" Shakara, who stood beside Razul, asked quietly.

"We need power. Power I say," Razul muttered like a man possessed. His eyes were filled with madness.

"Mm."

The Troll Champions looked at the monster army uncomfortably.

When Razul had made it known that he'd joined forces with the Evil God Worshippers, the Troll Champions had been fiercely against it.

Their ancestors had also been slaughtered and tortured by the Evil God Worshippers.

However, they couldn't change Razul's mind, and in the end, they joined forces with the Evil God Worshippers.

Right now...

The monster army was advancing towards the Anti-Ingrit Alliance in order to destroy them.

"When the monster army gets here, we'll join forces and attack. Get ready," Razul said. But for some reason, his voice sounded extremely empty.

"Are you alright?" Shakara asked carefully.

"Haha, I'm fine! No, I'm great. So shut up and do as I say!" Razul laughed and said indignantly. 

It was quite the bizarre sight.

"Understood."

The Troll Champions left.

"Hahaha. Welcome, Lord Jaila!"

Razul wouldn't stop smiling. 

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