Chapter 199: At the Gates of Meichi Castle (2)

“Oh? You’re finally here?”

Eliza had been keeping a low profile in a completely isolated barrack. While she had made a huge contribution to the war by defeating Marquis Hailey Maroon, a Master of the Empire, she had sacrificed the Republic’s troops in the process and had even been consumed by madness and tried to bring dishonor to the Ghost members that Siegfried had given to her as escorts. Once Siegfried heard the report, he had ordered her to keep a low profile and had isolated her until today.

But even with all that, she still seemed quite relaxed.

“Seeing how you’re here to let me out, it seems like you have a favor to ask of me? Ah! I heard that you recently lost. Is it because of that?”

Siegfried smiled at Eliza’s sarcastic comments.

“Don’t try to provoke me. It was your fault that you’ve been in isolation.”

“Hmph, didn’t you tell me I could do whatever I wanted?”

“That was only if it was related to the war. I didn’t tell you to be cruel to my men.”

He was talking about her order for the Ghosts to rape Marquis Hailey Maroon. He could look over the fact she had sacrificed the troops since it was related to the war, but her order had nothing to do with the war.

At his comment, Eliza frowned.

“Ah… If I had known that you were someone who would say one thing and do another to a woman, I’d have killed you much sooner.”

For a moment, Siegfried’s face turned cold.

“Then why don’t you try now?”

“......”

Eliza didn’t say anything and just continued to look at him. A heavy silence hung between the two.

To be honest, the relationship between them was a bit delicate. They had a similar relationship to a master and servant, but they were also somewhat equal. But the hierarchy was too distinct for it to be considered an alliance. It was probably more accurate to say it was a contractual relationship.

There were many terms in their contract that would help them reach their individual goals, but only the two of them knew what those terms were. Even Jake, Siegfried’s right hand, didn’t know much about it. 

But, the relationship between Siegfried and Eliza would never last forever. They both knew it was a precarious relationship that could be broken anywhere and at any moment.

And right now, Eliza had crossed the line. Even if it was just a little, she had still crossed it and Siegfried had no intention of tolerating it. Siegfried’s cold eyes were telling her only one thing: that if you’re going to follow after me then stick to your role. Depending on how Eliza responded, their contract could be destroyed.

After a long silence, Eliza responded.

“Alright, let’s stop here. It’ll be difficult to find another partner like you.”

In the end, Eliza bowed out first. Siegfried nodded as he responded.

“Good. I look forward to our cooperation.”

“Me too..”

SMACK!

Before Eliza could even finish talking, she fell to the side. Jake had swung his sword and hit her on the head. While it wasn’t hard enough for her to die, it was still a powerful blow that caused her slender body to fly to one side. Having been struck without a chance for her to scream, Eliza twitched across the room as Siegfried spoke to her coldly.

“Let’s consider that a penalty for your previous comment. Any complaints?”

“Complaint…  but… keugh…”

Eliza struggled up. She spat out a bloodied and broken tooth before continuing.

“Penalty… I can’t not agree to it.”

“Good.”

Having spoken, Siegfried turned the conversation around.

“I have something you need to do.”

“What is it?”

“I need the by-product of the elixir you spoke of before.”

“Ooh… you need that?”

“I do.”

“Fine. I quit researching, but I didn’t get rid of it. I can supply you as much as you want.”

“Good.”

Siegfried thought to himself.

‘You’re not the only one with a secret weapon, Milton Forrest.’

***

There is a saying: it’s a heavy responsibility to fight and win; it’s best to win without fighting.

Siegfried had just been about to conquer the entire Valence Kingdom when Milton, a hindrance, had appeared. While fighting and getting rid of said hindrance was one method, it would be even better to get rid of him without fighting.

As part of that, Siegfried had tried to attack the mainland of the Lester Kingdom. He had sent a messenger to David telling him to gather the 60,000 Republican reserve troops and attack the Lester Kingdom. If this attack worked, then Milton would have no choice but to withdraw since whatever he gained from the war within the Valence Kingdom, it wouldn’t be enough if things got dicey because the Lester Kingdom was threatened.

But, Milton hadn’t been unprepared in this area.First, he had given control over the border defense to his most trusted tactician, Count Sabian. He believed that unless Seigfried himself appeared, there was no one Sabian couldn’t block with his intelligence. Count Sabian also had a couple powerful cards in his hands as well: Duke Sean Palan and Viscount Trike Low.

Trike’s performance was particularly remarkable. To put it into perspective…

***

“Attack! We will be defeating the fortress today!”

5,000 Republican soldiers were fiercely attacking the core of the Lester Kingdom’s defense. In order to attack an undermanned and under defended fortress, 5,000 men were led to attack the fortress. Inside the fortress were only 1,000 men. It was an attack that had been planned because the Republicans believed that the temporary fortress, not even a castle, could easily be defeated within a day.

In fact, the Lester Kingdom’s defense force was considerably struggling.

“Viscount! The fortress gates don't seem like it’ll last much longer, sir!”

“Station the troops at the front gate! Do not let the enemy come in!”

The nobleman who was in charge of defending the fort clenched his teeth. Even as he gave the order, he knew it would be difficult.

‘Will we not be able to stop them?’

Just as he felt the oncoming defeat… A cavalry appeared on the enemy’s right side.

“That’s…?”

“Uh… A flag with a red arrow. Can it really be that unit?”

“It’s the Red Feathers! It’s the reinforcement led by Viscount Trike Low!”

“Hurray! We’re saved!”

The struggling fort defenders all cheered. The reinforcement troops led by Trike settled on the enemy’s right side and spread out into the shape of a fan. Then…

“Fire!”

At Trike’s command, the mounted archers loosened their arrows in unison. 

The number of arrows[1] was as many as 2,000. It was a rain of arrows, no, it was a downpour of arrows. 

Keugh!”

“It’s the enemy! Enemy on the righ… guh.”

“Arghh… my eye!”

The Republicans were defenseless against the sudden downpour of arrows and suffered severe damage. 

“Keep firing! Don’t give the enemy time to fix their formation!”

At Trike’s command, his men continued to rain arrows down on their enemy. Their arrows were accurate and fast. They showed a different strength than the average archer.

The unit had been formed after Trike had devoted his heart and soul into training them. This personal unit’s name was the Red Feather. While it wasn’t an order of knights, they were a much more powerful unit on the battlefield than a mediocre knight. They were all archers who used a composite bow and had been trained to be first-class archers by Trike. 

In order to qualify to become a member of the Red Feathers, they had to be able to shoot three out of five apples from a distance of 200 meters. They had also been trained to shoot arrows while on horseback. In the past, the men that Trike led shot arrows from a chariot but it had been too slow and difficult to change directions. That was why he had put in the time to train them to become a mounted archers unit. 

And once this unit was mobilized, it drove the other side insane. There was nothing their enemies could do in the face of the Red Feathers’ long range and mobility. But the scariest thing about his unit wasn’t the archers, but their captain, Trike, who led the Red Feathers. 

Without speaking, he was calmly shooting arrow after arrow at the enemy commanders. Everytime he let one fly, one of the Republican’s officers collapsed. As the officers who were supposed to be commanding in the field fell, the Republicans began to lose their formation.

 Trike’s eyes sparkled

“So he’s the chief commander.”

While his men were attacking the enemy, Trike had quietly found the enemy’s commander. Even at a glance, he could see a man shouting while he was being protected by a handful of elite soldiers.

“I’ll absolutely end you.”

Now that there wasn’t a need to hide, Trike infused his Aura into the arrow.

Woong woong woong woong...

The arrow was heavily infused with his Aura and the target was locked on the other side of the arrowhead. 

“Go.”

Twang!

A flash flew from Trike’s fingertips. That flash flew towards the commander who was desperately ordering his men during the battle. The result was…

SMACK!

The enemy commander’s head flew off.

“M… Major Genesis is dead!”

“It’s the Devil! The Red Devil is here!”

“Damn it, duck your heads!”

As he picked and shot at enemy commanders in the many wars he fought on the border, Trike had been given a nickname - the Red Devil. For Trike to have gotten such a nickname from the enemies meant that he had become a person of terror for them.

Once the enemy lines had been completely destroyed, the fortress gates opened and the Lester Kingdom’s troops rushed out.

“Attack! Make the invaders pay with their blood!”

“Waaaaaaaah!!”

Without missing the opportunity that they were given when the enemy’s formation broke, the fortress’s soldiers began to push out the enemy.

Having lost their command system, the Republican soldiers scrambled about in chaos before eventually retreating.

“Retreat! Retreat!”

“Hurry up and escape! Quic… guh!”

Trike nodded as he saw that the situation was completely flipped.

“We’re leaving. The rest will be dealt with by our allies.”

“Yes, sir!”

“Where is our next destination?”

“Sir, it’s Mackenzie Castle that’s half a day from here. We’ve been given an order to get there within a day, sir.”

“Alright. Move out!”

And so, Trike had rescued one of the fortresses while destroying 5,000 Republican troops at the same time and then left in a leisurely manner. Trike had already done this more than five times on the border.

With Count[2] Sabian ‘reading’ the Republic’s attack route and Trike intercepting them, they had greatly reduced the number of enemy troops. On top of that, if it seemed like there were too many enemies, Duke Palan would lead the knights and provide assistance. As a strategist, Count Sabian had made the most out of Trike and his Red Feathers unit.

Thanks to that, the Republican forces did not dare to cross the border into the Lester Kingdom. Eventually, David came to the conclusion that he could not senselessly use up his troops in this way and stopped attacking the Lester Kingdom. 

He sent a short message to Siegfried

  • Attacking Lester Kingdom failed.

“Damn it…”

Siegfried crumpled the letter and cursed after reading it. It was unlike him to respond like this, but that’s how unhappy he was.

“Milton Forrest. You really prepared for everything.”

“What will you do now, sir?”

“It can’t be helped. We have no choice but to hit them with our strength.”

Siegfried turned to give Jake an order.

“Tell all units, we will be attacking the Capital of the Valence Kingdom.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Fine, let’s see where this goes, Milton Forrest.”[3]

In the end, Siegfried decided to fight against Milton with strength for the outcome of this war.

***

“My Lord, the Republicans have moved.”

“What about Siegfried?”

“We’ve definitely checked on him as well, sir. He is also moving with the troops. We’ve also identified the commander of the Ghost unit, Jake.”

“So it’s an all-out war. Fine. I’ll meet them.”

Milton sent out his troops onto the battlefield as well. 

That battlefield was the Meichi Castle[4], a fortress city that served as a gateway to the capital of the Valence Kingdom. It was a large enough fortress that it could hold the 30,000 troops that Milton led as well as the 5,000 troops gained from threatening the nobles of the Valence Kingdom for a total of 35,000 men. 

The battle naturally turned into a siege. 


1. 그 숫자, I’m assuming that the number that the author is referring to here is the number of arrows

2. The raws said Viscount, but unless Sabian suddenly got demoted, I believe it’s a typo and translated it as Count

3. 어디 해보자. 밀턴 포레스트. A direct translation of the raws would be; “let’s do this, Milton Forrest” but I decided to translate the meaning it was trying to convey instead of the words.

4. 메이치 성. The raws said Meichi Castle, but the author also described it as a 요새 도시, a fortress city…

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