The Battle at Fort Silke
The fortified city atop the Radoa mountain range—Silke
After sending out our letter asking for them to capitulate, I received reports from our scouts that a large force of Amrzs soldiers were marching onto this fortress and headed towards the reception hall.
Once I entered inside, Theo yelled, “Salute to Lord-dono.”
Then, the 32 Radol commanders stood up at once, formed a line, and straightened their posture.
I guess this was a Radol salute. I was a bit embarrassed.
“Sorry for being late.”
“Not a problem. We just arrived as well.”
“By the way, didn’t I tell you to not bring any women or children into this operation?” I asked Theo while sending a glare towards the women with short white hair sitting next to him.
I learned about this after the fact, but the white-haired girl was Theo’s younger sister, Lucia, who was also the Radol’s miko. Apparently, the kingdom’s forces hadn’t touched her so that they could get the Radols to surrender quietly.
The women who were being sexually assaulted by the kingdom’s forces had sacrificed themselves to protect the miko and the children, and Lucia had no idea it was happening. Well, whether that’s a good thing or not is a different matter.
“If we’re talking about women and children, then aren’t you a child?”
I was lost for words. Well whatever. If Theo couldn’t hold his own sister back, then I had no chance. She was already an adult, so I’ll just let her do what she wants.
“Now then, you will be my aide for this battle, understood?” I said to Lucia.
“Yes, got it.”
I thought for sure that she would have a problem with something, but she obediently followed my order.
Now, time was running short, so Istarted the meeting immediately.
“Just now, I received a report from our scouts that 7000 Amrzs soldiers are marching onto this land.”
“7000……” muttered one commander.
Unease crept onto their faces.
“Why the long face? The wind is finally blowing our way now that they’ve sent 7000 soldiers our way instead of barricading themselves in Arkroy,” I said.
And I meant it. Normally, you’d need several times more soldiers than those in the fortress to attack it. Even if we did have our weapons, there’s no way I’d attack a fortress with over ten times our number.
That’s why we need to cut down their numbers as much as possible here. We had modern day heavy weapons that were remarkably superior, too. All we had to do was lead them to a fixed location and it’d be like shooting fish in a barrel.
“I understand. You’re saying it, so it must be true,” replied Theo, whose words blasted away the others’ unease as if it were never there.
This attitude was a bit tricky to deal with. Well, I guess him obediently following my orders isn’t really a problem.
“So? Are the preparations going smoothly?”
“Yes. They’ve attacked the tent and have recovered that thing,” replied Kurama.
I kept my cool. The operation would go to waste if we retreated here.
“So now they won’t stop.”
The only thing left to do was to move onto the next step of the operation.
“You’re a frightening person, just like I thought,” he said with a hint of amazement.
I looked over the Radol commanders and said, “Listen up. This is a war to obtain your civil rights. Defeat here means the death of all Radols. Remember that!”
“Yes sir!!” they stomped and said in unison.
“Once again, this is war. There’s no need for mercy or emotions. Act with the utmost decorum and send them to hell! I’ll take full responsibility for their massacre!”
“Yes sir!!” they cried.
And so, my first war started off with a bang.
Fort Silke was a fortress made by using earth magic to gouge out an area from the sleep slopes of the mountain range path to Camelot and marching onto Camelot would require making this fort capitulate.
The mountain path was surrounded by steep cliffs that were impossible to climb without flight magic.
“They’ve reached that location,” reported Lucia.
I nodded back at her before looking up to see signaling flags waving above the cliff.
That’s right, I’ve installed a gondola that allows people to freely traverse Fort Silke, made possible by furthering the excavation technology.
The only thing left was to entice the enemies to a certain location.
“Grey-sama. The kingdom’s forces have crossed over the first line.”
The first line was just in front of the fort’s walls.
I signaled the giant iron gate open, where a hundred elite knights on horseback rushed out with Theo leading the charge. The knights on horseback did a Radol salute in my direction, above the castle walls, and began their advance.
They were the crux of this operation and the ones who would bear the heaviest role. You could even say this operation lived and died with them.
The horseback squad advanced forward, and the commanders deployed several Wind Barriers on their vanguards. Now they wouldn’t be immediately destroyed by magic or arrows.
Still, their magic power was low and would be turned to pincushions if the enemy focused their arrows on any one of them. They were truly putting their life on the line here.
“O despicable and foolish kingdom soldiers. Know our wrath!” shouted Theo before beginning the charge.
Thirty minutes had already passed since the initial charge.
Our fierce attack allowed us to stand head-to-head against the enemy’s forces which were over ten times our number, and the battle had developed into an all out brawl just a few minutes ago.
As the path was very thin, the kingdom’s forces had no choice but to form a long line and couldn’t make good use of their superior numbers. Even still, having ten times the number of soldiers was its own threat; arrows and magic rained down on our soldiers.
Dozens of soldiers in the vanguard had already dropped out from heavy injuries, but the lack of deaths was probably due to the strengthening magic they casted on themselves.
According to Aquido’s reports, the Radols intentionally placed heavy importance on strengthening magic and focused their training on that.
The battlefield full of strengthened horses and their red skin looked absolutely demonic.
“What are you doing? They’re just savages! Hurry up and annihilate them!” wailed a robed commander with blonde hair as he pitifully shouted orders at his soldiers.
“The rest of the kingdom’s forces have just crossed over the final line,” reported Kurama.
“Then let’s wrap this up,” I grinned. “Everyone, you’ve endured well.”
I raised my right hand and a cannonball shot into the air.
“All forces retreat!!” ordered Theo.
The iron gate opened up, and the Radol knights quickly turned back.
“Don’t let them escape! It’ll be annoying if they get back inside the fort!” yelled the robed commander. An astute decision, but too late.
Fifteen cannons and a squad of 50 marksmen lined above the fort walls.
A man with black, undercut hair stepped forward and aimed at the kingdom’s soldiers. He was the commander of the marksmen squad, Calogero, and was apparently a master of the bow and arrow.
One of the kingdom’s knights on horseback, who had finally entered firing distance, began to swing his swords down on the retreating Radols.
The bullet hit dead center between the knight’s eyebrows, and he collapsed onto the ground.
Bang! Bang! Bang! Bang!
The gunshots echoed one after another, and cartridges danced in the air. Then, the enemy soldiers fell from their horses, their heads having been perfectly shot through.
After a moment, Calogero grinned, having slaughtered five soldiers in the blink of an eye. He turned back to the artillery and marksman squads and rested his gun on the ground. With that signal, all the cannons and muzzles pointed towards the soldiers.
Calogero aimed his rifle at the sky and shouted, “First team, begin firing!!”
In an instant, the shots created an ear splitting boom as the ground burst open and was enveloped in a cloud of dust.
Just like that, the battlefield descended into hell.
“Ah! That hurts!!”
Shrieks, roars of pain, and groans befell the battlefield. Once the dust swept away, we were left with the sight of several small craters and collapsed soldiers.
“Second team, begin firing!!”
Gunshots ripped apart the air, and with each shot, another kingdom soldier lost their life. The knights who were pursuing Theo’s squad had almost all been wiped out, and the ones who survived fell into panic.
“What are you guys doing! Fight, goddammit!”
I’ll praise his guts for not running away and continuing to scream at his own people, but that’s having the exact opposite effect.
“Everyone’s gone back inside,” reported Lucia.
I once again raised my hand to signal one final bombardment, and the thunderous booms accompanied true hell on Earth.
The ground trembled in response to the explosion. Dynamite had exploded atop the cliff which turned into giant boulders and broken rocks that rained onto the soldiers’ heads.
The raining bedrock upon the soldiers was like a giant elephant stepping on ants; the rocks utterly crushed and pulverized the soldiers.
In just a few seconds, they lost their ability to scream and over half of the kingdom’s soldiers had been pinned beneath the rubble where they died.
Nobody said a word. This wasn’t even a one-sided war, but rather simply a slaughter, after all.
“Grey-dono…… any further and……” pleaded Lucia.
But that wouldn’t do. If the Radols didn’t prove just how powerful and merciless they were to the world, the kingdom will soon send a second and even third wave of soldiers.
They’d have to prevent the empire from moving, at least until they stabilized their forces. We couldn’t relax here.
“Track down the remaining soldiers,” I ordered Kurama.
He quickly disappeared into the battlefield, followed soon after by Calogero and his marksmen squad.
The ones tracking the soldiers were the cream of the crop of archers and marksmen. The wounded, confused, and even now mentally crippled soldiers stood no chance.
“What’s wrong? Are you disillusioned?” I asked Lucia, who just silently bit her lip.
“No, you probably made the correct decision, Grey-sama. But just don’t push yourself too much.”
“Huh? Push myself too much?”
“Yes. You’re normally a very kind person after all.”
“Me? Kind? Don’t be stupid. There’s no way a kind person could think up a plan like this.”
The word kind was for people like Satella and Aquido, who wouldn’t stain their own hands. The descriptor was about as far as she could get from someone as unscrupulous as I.
“You do the exact opposite of what you want to do. Yep. I got it. You’re hopelessly dishonest with yourself.”
Damn, this girl is hard to deal with. Well whatever. I’ll probably never interact with her after this war.
Before long, Kurama came back reporting of our complete victory.