Capturing Fort Arkroy
The Radol forces consisted of a squad of 200 marksmen, a squad of 32 magic swordsmen, a squad of 100 explosive archers, and a squad of 30 artillery men, totaling up to 362 in total.
On the other hand, there were over 900 first division soldiers; almost three times as many, and we had to make sure no civilians were injured.
We had a tough battle coming up.
A file of about fifty soldiers were marching down the center street that ran east to west through Arkroy.
“Take your positions!”
The Radol commander raised his right hand and twenty marksmen aimed their sights down at the still-advancing soldiers.
“The enemy are few in number! Let’s overrun them with numbers!”
A bearded middle-aged officer pointed his sword at the Radol’s guns and his soldiers raised their longswords into position.
The soldiers charged forward with a battle cry.
Gunshots rang out one after another sending out sparks of fire beneath the light of the building lamps.
Some soldiers took a bullet straight to the face and their head exploded like a crushed tomato. Others took a hit to the stomach and fell to the ground in pain. It was a macabre scene all around.
The kingdom soldiers let out a shriek and ground to a halt.
“Second round, fire!!”
Another round of gunshots sounded in the air along with this mysterious order. The soldiers became increasingly agitated at the sight of their comrades collapsing like ragdolls.
In an instant, over half their numbers were beyond recovery.
“Magic swordsman squad, charge!”
The knights who had clad themselves with body-strengthening magic kicked off the ground and zipped into the fray, slicing off head after head.
“Fall back soldiers!”
A group of rugged men in iron armor equipped with pikes, longswords, and battleaxes walked forward to switch with the soldiers.
They were wearing the same armor as the ones who had occupied Camelot. While their movement is severely restricted, their armor was much tougher than a normal set. Magic and guns would probably be ineffective. I see. Even if you’re slow, you can trample over your opponents as long as they can’t hurt you. Seems like it’s an anti-mage squad.
Then I’ll just have to play one of my cards.
I looked over to Calogero who nodded and raised his gun into the air.
A squad of artillery men nervously stepped forward with a small launcher on their shoulders pointed at the group of armored soldiers.
The launchers were equipped with armor piercing rounds, bullets created with remarkably high penetration power known as the Munroe Neumann effect.
And that power went straight into—
The shells were launched into the air at frightening speeds creating a firework-sounding explosion, instantly launching the armored soldiers into the air.
Smoke rose from every which way and pieces of bodies began piling up.
“O-our heavily armored squad……”
The heavily armored squad, known for its high capabilities was now effectively wiped out. This was the moment the kingdom’s soldiers lost their spirit.
Then, in the face of the retreating kingdom soldiers, the Radols began their operation in full.
The explosions echoed into the night and soldiers and archers continued to fall left and right.
—Some died immediately as the shells went straight through their armor and their hearts.
—Some writhed on the ground in pain as their femurs had been shot through.
—However, some ran away in fear.
Looking onto this quite literally scene of hell, I unconsciously bit my lip.
“To think it would be this one sided……”
Calogero’s squad of marksmen formed a line of about ten people and were ripping through the kingdom soldiers.
The archers had also fastened dynamite onto their arrows and were creating squad-sized explosions left and right. The only thing we could hear were the intermittent explosions and the death throes of the kingdom soldiers.
All of the kingdom soldiers, from the ones who charged at us with swords to the archers atop the buildings were now mere corpses. They were all like sheep to the slaughter.
Tears formed at the edges of Lucia’s eyes. “Grey, this isn’t what war is supposed to be.”
I nodded. “Yeah, I know. This is just a slaughterhouse.”
I might have come to a misunderstanding. Rather, I had overwhelming underestimated a gun’s power.
Each cannon shot brought certain death and stopped the soldiers in their tracks. Someone always died with each explosive boom, a fact that shaved away at people’s will to stand up and fight.
Soldiers that have lost their will are just firing targets. The scene was just like one of the western powers who had modernized more quickly than the rest overrunning other countries.
“Then let’s stop doing this,” Lucia said in tears.
I turned away but mercilessly replied, “I can’t.”
“Lucia, this is war, no matter what anyone says.”
This time, the kingdom had invaded the Radols, stolen their food, and forced 30,000 civilians into starvation. At worst, the Radols might have even completely died out. Letting them off easily after that would be an affront to the other countries.
Now, humanity had acquired firearms, though in an irregular way. It would soon spread through the world no matter how we tried to conceal it, leading us towards a world war. That would be an insanity this world has yet to even come close to.
And this kingdom was the one to have started it all. That meant this battle was for a tiny territory in the empire to prove itself to the kingdom, no, to the world. The dice have already been cast, so we can’t back down anymore.
If there were one way to stop this, it would be for the rulers responsible to unconditionally surrender, but they’ve yet to even show their faces.
“I can’t accept that!” Lucia cried as large teardrops poured out.
“Then burn this sight in your memory.” I bit my lip. “This is war.”
The enemy had their own families, friends, and lovers. We had trampled all over that. No matter what pretty formalities you tried to hide behind, you could never erase that truth.
Lucia bit into her lip until blood began pooling out and looked off into the distance. I gave her a sidelong glance and headed off.
It was an overwhelming victory. We reduced the enemy into a pile of corpses in just an hour and had gained control of a majority of Arkroy’s first division.
“Grey-sama, I took them in as prisoners of war,” reported Calogero. He glanced at the group of frightened soldiers, trembling as several muskets were pointed at them.
“Got it. Good work. Make sure they’re firmly tied up and lock them up with the civilians. Please be gentle.”
It’d be idiotic to have other countries start criticizing us. I strictly ordered them to not lay a hand on any and all civilians.
We could have prevented any further sacrifices if the soldiers and officers had unconditionally surrendered, but they unfortunately refused and now only about forty percent remained as prisoners of war.
I had already planned to take a certain number of them as prisoners of war. I’d turn them into spokesmen that spread the Radol’s fearsomeness around the world. That was why I was hesitant around these soldiers.
“Lord-dono, the only one left is the central estate.”
After checking it out with Analyze Environment, I found fifteen people. I, Theo, and the magic knight squad would be more than enough.
“Got it. Let’s see, half of you guys come with me. After you gather up the prisoners of war, Calogero, have Lucia stand by in the second division.”
After a salute, Calogero tried to grab Lucia’s wrist but she shook him away.
Much to my chagrin, she said with a pale face, “I’ll follow Grey and onii-sama.”
“Lucia, this isn’t playtime!”
Lucia simply shook her head and gripped her fists. “I know! But I need to see this through!”
“We’re out of time. Let’s go.”
I’m sure Lucia knows how dangerous it’ll be and persuading any idiot that’s gotten this far would be an exercise in futility.
I set off with Lucia silently following behind. Theo, after a sigh, soon followed after.