Vol. 14: Chapter 03: A Battle without a Commander

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Translated by Tianic, edited by Grammarly


Lissan’s gate now fully opened. Kheda’s troops poured out through the drawbridge one after another. They joined the battle.

In the temporary General Staff’s post, Carlos cannot stop yelling orders. His words were written by the rest staff officers, then passed down by wingman orderlies who also had to look out for communication magic balls.

This was the army raised by the House of Kheda, Dark City’s army. Even without its supreme commander, it can run a war on its own.

In the meantime, Luhrmann’s army has stabilized its soldiers by slaughtering a massive amount of deserters and replenished the front line.

The rebels have brought the finest legions that outnumbered Kheda’s army. But they have not yet created a lethal formation that could threaten Lissan City. And the same was true for the opponents.

While the battlefields on both the left and the right side of Lissan City went on for such a short time, there was no telling which army had the upper hand, neither could they spare any troops to reinforce.

But the rebels sub-commander saw his chance. On the battlefield, most of Kheda’s army was within the range of their friendly archers. He planned to divide his enemy’s army into chunks one by one as soon as they made it out of Lissan’s gate. Therefore, as long as his army can block Lissan’s exit, he could gain a chance to win.

He sent his order. Very quickly, rebel’s archers shot several waves of dense arrows before twelve elite troops arrived at the frontline. Their mission was to surround Kheda’s troops that came out of the city by striking from 3 directions.

Seeing this, Carlos’ staff members quickly altered strategy: Dark City’s knights began creating more chaos by marching indifferently and blocking them with their own troops; the infantries behind were to calmly search for scattered enemy chunks and eradicate.

The battlefield quickly boiled again.

With both armies engaging, the entire battlefront was ripped: with thousands battling as well as small chunks of fighting. However, the rebels’ greater number of soldiers has gained the final upper hand.

Meanwhile, the siege tower that carried Cohen Kheda and Fischer Summer’s body was steadily pushed to Lissan City’s wall. A team of wingmen carefully moved both of them onto a stretcher and flew them back. Only until this moment could Carlos put his heart and soul into directing the war at hand.

“Get the archers down the wall, the gate is too narrow.” Yelled Carlos, “All marksmen in the city take over the wall posts immediately!”

Hence hundreds of climbing ropes were tossed from the top of the city wall as the archers carried their bows and slid down the ropes. Almost at the same time, the marksmen off the wall ran onto the top of the wall to cover the climbers.

Supported by thousands of skilled elf marksmen, the battle began to favor Kheda’s army. It takes only 3 rounds of neat shootings to dismantle the formation of an incoming rebels wave.

Therefore the troops that merely made out of the main entrance took the opportunity to form up, which made the Chief of Staff’s life easier to make the deployment.

Carlos quietly ran his calculations while gazing at the battlefield, he inhaled deeply, then puked a word, “ATTACK!”

“Attack!”

Hence Cohen Kheda’s Dark City guarding troops encountered the finest forces from other empires who chose to support Luhrmann. This was the first operation for Cohen’s troops to experience a battle on such a large scale and it was certainly a critical test for every soldier and officer.

Eight guarding troop regiments have formed 2 sharp heads totaling 10, 000 each and a distance of 1000 arm’s length in between. The first infantries that made out of the city were there to protected the archers. Light riders were contracting in order to support and protected the archers whose mission was to help the hot zones in time on the battlefield.

Idle officers of both the opposing armies were all observing the war.

The rebels’ commander has sent every last soldier into the battle. He’s got heavy-armored infantries to defend, 2 light-armored troops to assault Kheda’s back from the side. He’s also deployed archers.

However, Luhrmann’s archers didn’t put much threat to Cohen’s men because their giant arrow-blockers were enough to offset the messy rain of arrows.

At the center of the battleground, 2 opposing forces impacted. They were the lancers who were at the front of the formation from both armies. On contact, a cloud of dark metals rained from the back of Kheda’s lancers into the rebels’ front. Thousands of lethal axes fell sharply, killing hundreds. Before the first wave was over, the second rain of flying axes arrived.

The 2 waves of axes successfully broke the most important formation for an army on the battlefield. Correct, whoever was left after the formation broke cannot defend anything. Their lives were ended by crossbows.

As soon as the lancers’ formation broke, the rebels’ axemen cannot make it near the Dark City’s troops. The latter still had enough lances which were too long for the axemen’s short weapons to breakthrough.

Therefore Cohen’s guarding troops stepped firmly on the bodies of the rebels. They advanced steadily and irresistibly and started dismantling the second defense line.

“Archers carry on behind the main force.” Carlos issued another other, “Focus the enemy front troops, shoot to kill. Next, weaken their defense system.”

Following Carlos’ direction, the archers were ready to draw their bows whereas Luhrmann’s commander’s order to assault the Kheda army’s side back arrived as well. However, the assault-ers quickly became assault-ees due to the quick and fierce crossbow shooting from Kheda army’s light riders. They sent their shots rapidly and evenly-distributed which resulted in the rebels’ heavy casualties before they could even close the distance.

As the situation drew towards Kheda’s army, eyes reddened, the rebellious commander dispatched his mage battalion. The mages cast nothing else but magic fireballs towards the hottest battleground. Kheda’s guarding troops suffered minimum casualties due to their protective magic shield, however, the fireballs have successfully slowed them down.

Meanwhile, in the rebels’ commanding post, all the sub-commanders were furious, anxious. One can constantly see them slamming the table, shouting out profanatory orders. Luhrmann has been here since the start of the conflict, he had a pale face, shivering lips, dumbfounded expression due to the fact that he lost his last, most important card.

“Your Excellency, we should leave here.” Knowing they’ve lost the big picture, the white knight who’s in charge of guarding Luhrmann spoke, “There’s no point watching this war anymore.”

“Go? NO, I’m not leaving. I NEED to kill Cohen Kheda, you bastard…” Luhrmann powerlessly looked into the air, his eyes wandered, “I’ve not lost, no, I’m not going back to DC like this.”

“Our order is to take you back safely to DC not to win the war.” The white knight compressed his lips, “Are you leaving with me or not?”

“No, I…”

Before Luhrmann could finish, the white knight chopped his neck with a hand, then dragged fainted Luhrmann out of the commanding post with a dozen white knight following. No one dared to stop him despite all men in the commanding post being stunned.

As soon as the group escorted the Prime Minister out of the battlefield, Kheda’s wingman troops visited the war. They were targeted as soon as they showed but still, with all the wingmen dying any second, they aimed the rebels’ mages, eliminated them then began supporting the wings of the main force.

Seeing the main force was faced with a considerable amount of enemies, Carlos ordered the big force to alter formation. Both of wings’ rear troops advanced to fill the blanks and expanding the head of the main force to 3 times as large as earlier.

After adjusting the formation, the big army began advancing steadily while the wingmen began assaulting.

The final situation had a trend to circulate the rebels by Kheda’s army.

“The winged formation, no, it’s not. I was told Cohen Kheda was not an expert in a field battle.” The sub-commanders in the rebels HQ thought.

“Sir…” An orderly dashed into, he cried, “Sir, we’re not able to hold any longer. Some of the soldiers are fleeing the battlefield.

Hearing it, all sub-commanders quickly lost their will to continue this meaningless battle.

“Our mid-army has gone.” One of the sub-commander checked the battlefront from a distance, “Our soldiers no longer have the morale nor the motivation to continue. I advise a full withdrawal before we’re left with nothing.”

“But…”

“No BUT! We didn’t fight this hard during the last P/A War, much less Swabia’s civil conflict. We’re here to gain, do you really wanna die here?” A man’s voice replied, “Even Luhrmann has fled. I’m not going to let my men die here for nothing!”

“If you do that, then your men have really died for nothing!” One of Luhrmann’s subordinates objected, “You took our money, you do the job. Besides, we still haven’t deployed our last resort.”

“I don’t care about money if I have to die for it. Take your complaint to your master’s. I’m not fighting a war that I can’t win. How could I? Look at the enemies, their weapons, morale! And trust me, I never have any hope for your puny last resort. One more word, I’ll kill you!”

“Silence!” The highest-ranked general stood up, “Send my order, full withdraw!”

Looking at the big picture, even Luhrmann’s men stopped arguing and admitted the decision.

However, a losing army cannot just retreat by simply sending orders. since all the formations were already collapsing.

Since they have agreed on retreating, all the officers quickly mounted their horses and fled. They had a small amount of riders to cover them. As the riders started fleeing, the infantries and archers followed.

The beginning of the withdrawal was still relatively ordered, but the only leaving route was a commercial road with limited width. To run faster, an army had to take over as much of the road as possible. Therefore, all troops began fighting each other to take more space.

It was a mess. Everyone was running and they cannot care less for anyone else.

It was a withdrawal of hardship: weaker soldiers were kicked off the road struggling to advance on the rough grass beside; it was also a withdrawal of wailing: the wounded and logistics troops were abandoned by their comrades; it was also a withdrawal of blood: more soldiers who lost strength fell and trampled to death by their friendly army.

As more fleeing troops conversed, the situation worsened. Soldiers needed to ran faster so they tossed their weapons and armors. Carriages of goods and supplies were left unattended. They wouldn’t even spend a second to at least burn them.

The collapse caused a chain reaction that spread over the battlefield.

“Sir, the enemies are retreating!”

“Noted, leave them alone.” Carlos replied calmly, “Steady, focus on the rebels down the wall first.”

“We need to chase them! It’s an excellent chance!” A colonel officer said out of confusion, “Chase them!”

“Mind your work!” Carlos spared him a look, “It’s not your turn to tell me what to do.”

But the colonel persisted, “We need to chase on! Commander Cohen would do it!”

“Take him,” Carlos told a guard, his finger pointed at the colonel, “to the LAD, 50 floggings.”

This resolute order was carried out immediately. The colonel was reluctant however he dared not disobey an order before he was tied and escorted out.”

As a matter of fact, Carlos was well aware of the chaos among the rebels. If it were Cohen or Wilder, he would definitely initiate an absolute strike. Wilder’s style was self-explanatory, as for Cohen, his calmness was mostly on planning and pre-war counsel. When it came to attacking, he’s basically the same as Wilder.

However, Carlos was definitely different from others. He was a truly calm man especially at a key moment like now. He’d rather abandon a probable win than ensuring the victory at hand. Indeed, it was petty to some eyes, for Carlos, he’s only content when the money was really in his account.

The current job at hand was to eliminate the rebels who were still resisting. As for those who ran, Carlos had a plan to exhaust them first.

“Tell my wingman scouts to learn where the rebels run.” After careful consideration, Carlos issued his orders, “Inform the left and right, they’re allowed to rest or change horses if they are 100% sure of the victory.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Send my order to the 2 legion commanders: absolutely no chasing the enemies.” Carlos continued, “Get our laborers ready to clean the battlefield.”

The uproar down Lissan City’s wall slowly died as more rebellious soldiers chose to surrender. They knelt but they were not treated with mercy. Cohen Kheda’s guarding troops put every one of them down.

Most of the rebels from a further distance fled. However, it was as Carlos had hoped. He cannot afford to chase them with a possibly higher cost. In comparison, killing the ones at hand was more economical.

Finally, all fights ended. It was merely 4 hours since the start.

“Sir, the 2nd Legion has 3 rider regiments ready. Commander Wilder is requesting to lead the chase.”

“Him leading the chase is denied!” Carlos said firmly, “Tell him to dispatch his riders immediately. Commander Wilder is to report for duty immediately to Dark City as soon as all military jobs are wrapped. Copy the same order to the 3rd Legion.”

“Yes, sir!”

“All hands, follow my lead. We’re going to the battlefield.”

“Sir, aren’t you heading to the viceroy’s first?” An officer said quietly, “Commander Cohen is…”

“A soldier should put his duty first at any time, personal affair second.” Carlos didn’t stop walking.

The officer complied and followed.

During the 4 hours of battle, 2 armies had an absolutely harsh fight. The earth down the city was shattered, ground burned by magic. Broken pieces of weapons, dark-red blood stains, dead bodies were everywhere.

Dark City’s shaman physicians were leading the rescue mission with their assistance. For these people, saving a life cannot truly make them happy. Their true purpose was to ask for higher pay by showing they are better at treating patients than others. No matter what, with their bizarre treatment, all friendly soldiers were stabilized as long as they can still breathe.

As for the undead enemies, they were better off not being used as ‘spare organs’.

The shaman physicians were followed by soldiers of the Lad Advocate Department. Each of them had a living rebellious soldier in hand. As soon as the shaman asked for, they’ll become spare ears and noses.

Teams of laborers went in and out of the battlefield carrying stretchers. All of them covered their noses and mouths with pieces of cloth ripped from their wearing just to lightened the nasty smell of blood. Commoners have never seen a situation like this. Nearly all of them were dumbfounded, legs shivering as soon as they stood among the broken bodies.

Both the victorious and defeated army learned their result in such chaos.

Carlos stumbled into an area of liquid mud where the war had been most intense. Like a blood swamp, the once black soil was soaking-red. Carlos irresistibly felt the urge that was forcing him to leave this living hell.

“Save our soldiers, do your best. Collect all enemy’s goods and supplies.” Carlos told his deputy, “Then inform the LAD that we do not need any captives below the rank of colonel.”

“Yes, sir!”

The deputy saluted and stamped his right foot. His boot again sunk into the red, liquid mud.


This chapter was originally published on Wuxianation, any despicable reposts or copies without proper citings are strictly prohibited.

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