Vol. 17: Chapter 04 – I Have Your Medals, Come and Get Them

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Translated by Tianic, edited by Grammarly


This information from the vanguard reached the commander-in-chief quickly. The Lieutenant-General listened to the staff officer’s report while rubbing his hands unintentionally, his face looked gloomy as he closed his eyes in contemplation.

“Your Excellency, the blockade encountered by the vanguard is tenacious and as expected.” The staff officer said cautiously, “In this way, it seems that Cohen Kheda has chosen Carson as his main target. And our troops need two hours to pass the valley, shouldn’t we get prepared to move?”

“Don’t rush, wait it out. A few thousand casualties in the vanguard are not unacceptable, order them to continue the attack.” The Lieutenant-General opened his eyes, “What’s the latest intelligence?”

“The reconnaissance range has reached its limit, so far no enemy has been found behind us.”

“Strange, this is too quiet. Even if they didn’t deploy elite troops to sneak up on us, they should have sent small groups of troops to confuse us!” The Lieutenant-General again fell into contemplation: “Tell the main force to stay put, the rear stay alerted. Give the order to the front commander to attack hard! Slaughter him if he fails!”

“Yes, Your Excellency!”

By the time this order reached the vanguard, a new round of attack formation was ready.

The rebel staff officers had drawn up a detailed attack plan for an urgent war council with their middle and lower-ranking officers to give detailed operational instructions for their own units in response to the Dark Army’s defense work.

Additional infantry from the rear had also arrived, and the sappers had improvised some equipment for them to defend Dark Army’s deadly arrows. Since they were to attack from the same direction as last time, most of the traps on this route had been discovered so there will be no more unexpected panic.

“Last time we attacked, the nearest spot we reached was less than fifty arms from the enemy’s pit, but it was a lost cause!” The commander waved his fist at the meeting, “This time, the infantry and cavalry must work closely together, and must rush through the trap area as fast as possible. Give me the signal after you occupy the front, and the following echelon will take over from you immediately!”

“Yes, sir!”

“Now fall in – prepare to attack!”

At the same time, many staff officers in the command of the Dark Army’s Third Legion were hurting their brains.

Whether to let the front dummy positions resist a bit further or to withdraw immediately, the staff officers were a bit indecisive. Their commander, Brigadier General Moya, was chatting with the king at this time.

“Didn’t we set the retreat condition? It will be left to the frontline commanders to judge for themselves.” After learning of his men’s concerns, Brigadier General Moya began to admonish them in front of the king: “You are tens of miles away from the battlefield, how do you know the details of the situation? The situation on the battlefield is always changing rapidly, and it’s gonna be very different long before the orders arrive, so you don’t need to dictate such things. Go do your job!”

“Oops, oops! Commander Moya is fuming.” Cohen chuckled, “I rarely see you angry. Now that you entered command, your temper has grown!”

“I have no choice but to push more capable men to rise quickly and become middle and senior officers.” Brigadier General Moya smiled shyly, “Sir, don’t you think the commanders are very dependent and lack autonomy and innovation, while the staff officers have their hands too far out and want to interfere in everything?”

Cohen looked at Moya and was happy in his heart. If this had come out of anyone else’s mouth, he wouldn’t have been surprised at all. But for Moya, such a thought proved that he had put all his heart into the military.

Moya was a simple young man. He has always been vaguely resistant to the identity of an army man. He just wanted to take care of, and guard his brother. Therefore he took the job. It wouldn’t be harsh to say that Moya was content with the status quo. However, beneath that simple nature, hid the talent no less than that of a general staff officer. Cohen had long wanted to dig that talent out.

“You have changed then! Moya.” Cohen said softly, “You’ve become sharper, but have not lost your nature.”

Moya lowered his head slightly, remained silent for quite a while.

“Boss, King Fischer, he… was also my friend.” Only after a long time, Moya raised his head and replied in a choked voice: “Although it is not very respectful to that I said so, but I, I did treat him as my other brother, and I failed him.”

“Moya, don’t be like that.” Cohen held his brother’s shoulder and said in a gentle tone, “Fischer would be happy to be guarded by you as a younger brother.”

“After the fall of King Fischer, you are not the only one who grieved. I also realized that it is not enough to just protect.” Moya stroked his hand against the window: “I want to destroy the enemy who would do harm to us! Protecting is only the method, not my purpose.”

“I’m already happy that you can think like that.” Cohen nodded and stood side by side with Moya: “We are all fools who have to suffer a lesson in blood before we can reflect on ourselves.”

“Then, boss, I’ll go across the river and prepare for more battles.” Moya turned his body: “This place is very safe, remember to inform me before you move.”

“Go ahead!” Cohen smiled faintly: “I also have not been active for quite a while, so I will help you by giving the officers an unforgettable lesson.”

“Commander.” Moya stood up straight and gave a sharp military salute.

Cohen returned the salute and gazed at Moya’s back for a long time, his gaze gradually becoming as deep as that of a dragon.

The rebels once again organized a powerful attack, and the sound of killing on the fake battlefield was earth-shattering.

Rebel cavalry, under the cover of infantry, launched a continuous onslaught on both sides of the river at the same time. Rebel soldiers came up in a steady stream, causing great pressure on the defense line of the Dark Army.

The arrows were consumed very fast, the traps at the frontline were basically scrapped, and the troops began to suffer casualties. After a calm analysis of the situation, the Third Legion’s frontline commander gave the order to retreat to the second defense position.

Three blazing fireballs shot up, spinning into the sky, and smashed into the rebel. Three areas were ignited. After that, more fire magic turned the front battlefield into an ocean of fire.

Bursting fireballs, wide walls of fire, sudden and violent strikes temporarily stopped the rebel attack and disturbed the rebel commanders’ line of sight. Taking advantage of this opportunity, the Dark Army withdrew from the pits to the second line of positions a mile behind.

“Hurry up and get the wagons & horses ready!” Withdrawing to this last line of defense, the commander of the Dark Army also got nervous and shouted, “All units  reconfirm their course of action and get all ready to retreat!”

Once the flames in front of the battlefield subsided a bit, the rebel commander ordered his troops to proceed with the attack, although he was not at all happy to see the troops rush in and take the position, it was too many casualties for just one line of defense.

“Report sir – we broke through the first line of defense, but were again blocked a mile behind the first line!” The staff officer was drenched in sweat: “This time, the resistance is incredibly harder!”

Hearing the news, the commander’s heart trembled: “Have you captured any prisoners of the Dark Army?”

 

“No prisoners, but judging by the amount of blood in their hiding, they’ve sustained heavy casualties. Every few steps saw dead soldiers. There were nearly 1,000 enemy men yet to be carried away, but it seems their losses are not smaller than ours ……”

“Report up, after breaking through the enemy’s first line of defense, we’ve encountered a blockade, our troops suffered heavy losses, requesting reinforcements.” The vanguard commander spat and raised his battle sword: “Fuck this, we’ve already lost half the men. If we keep fighting like this, eventually the establishment will be gone! Get the horses, follow me!”

The frontline’s fight was fierce, but the rebel’s general command behind was silent. Everyone looked at the Lieutenant General without a word, while this Excellency was still pacing unhurriedly.

“Your Excellency, the forward troops have suffered heavy losses, it is difficult to maintain the momentum of the attack at this rate.” His adjutant was in a state of anxiety.

“What are you panicking about? How many men can be deployed in a narrow place like this? There’s enough for the vanguard!” The Lieutenant-General cursed under his breath, “I’ve never seen cavalries lost to infantry. How dare they talk to me like this!”

An intelligence officer rushed over and whispered something in the ear of the staff officer.

“Your Excellency, after the vanguard broke through the first line of defense and again encountered fierce resistance from the enemy, the vanguard troops  lost more than half, the commander has personally arrived at the first line of command.” The staff officer’s tone was tinged with astonishment: “At the same time, the enemy troops were identified as the Third Legion infantry of the Dark Army. They have also suffered heavy losses.”

“That is so.” The Lieutenant-General replied noncommittally, “Wait a little longer.”

“But sir, we can’t!”

“I said – wait a little longer!” The Lieutenant-General waved his hand and raised his voice: “Send an additional 10,000 troops to the front and keep the momentum of the attack! If Kheda’s army is focusing on Carson, then there won’t be too much manpower here!”

“Yes, Your Excellency.”

“Order the scouts to reconnoiter our back one more time!”

“Yes, Your Excellency!”

The information that the main force of the rebel reinforcements was pressing forward reached Cohen Kheda shortly afterward.

“It seems that this is also a cautious commander.” As a group of his men watched, Cohen slowly tore the intelligence paper into thin strips, “Send my order, maintain the original plan. Tell the frontline commander to act with caution.”

“Yes, Your Grace.”

“In a little while, the signal smoke in Carson should be lit up too!” Cohen turned around and faced Leila: “May I have my armor now?”

Leila smiled faintly and shook her head with a firm attitude.

The rebel vanguard continued to suffer casualties in the frontline, filling the numerous traps with flesh and blood, although it was only a stone’s throw away, the rebel soldiers were unable to cross. Whenever they saw a Dark Army soldier, it meant they had stepped into a death zone.

The charge led by the rebel vanguard commander himself was also nullified by a rain of arrows. This poor commander not only lost his beloved warhorse but was also almost burnt to a crisp by magical flames.

With the addition of 10,000 troops, the rebels regained their confidence, leaving a little gap between attacks.

The commander of the Dark Army side had been calmly watching the battle. Once he saw that the conditions were met, he immediately gave the order for the whole army to retreat. The troops hence entered the passages in an organized retreat in between the rebel attacks. The wagons carrying the wounded had long since departed, and the wagons still left at this point were piled high with bodies.

While the rebels were still rushing up, the Dark Army defenders poured hundreds of barrels of kerosene into the position as a final treat for the rebels. When hordes of rebel soldiers rushed up to the position thinking they were victorious, hundreds of lit arrows flew from afar, turning the battlefield into a sea of fire.

In the midst of the flames, the Dark infantry began running backward, sneering as they tossed their armor along the way. The wagons behind them also kept throwing bodies wearing the uniforms of both sides down to the ground, leaving behind the sight of fierce battles all the way, though the bodies wearing the Dark uniforms were more than three times as many as the other side. It looked like they were really fleeing in disarray.

The fire on the battlefield burned for a long time, the smoke-choked rebel soldiers at the downwind can not open their eyes. They had to wait until the fire was smaller. The reconnaissance had to detour from the river to check the situation.

As expected, they saw the enemy was “defeated as they retreated in broken pieces”, a large number of bodies scattered in disarray behind the battlefield. If one looked forward, he would see a land full of broken weapons, crooked and trampled banners. They also found a few of their own wounded.

“They ran away.” The wounded were dying and said, “We chased on a large number of men, then they set fire. Our commander went after them with his men.”

The news quickly boosted the army’s morale. The rebel’s commander ordered all soldiers to mount up and pursue! After this, a piece of information flew to the Lieutenant-General’s command, “The Kheda’s army has suffered heavy casualties, several lines of defense have been broken, our troops are in pursuit!”

Faced with the eager look of his officers, the Lieutenant-General was still going to state ‘Wait a little longer.’ The next moment, the signal smokes, which was lit by the Dark Army General Staff Officer Carlos for the Carson City defenders, as ordered by King Cohen, had shown its color.

Seeing the signal smoke, which would only be lit as a last resort, the Lieutenant-General’s eyes turned fierce.

“The main force starts advancing immediately!” The Lieutenant-General finally changed his idea, “Logistics provisions will mobilize 10 minutes after!”

The main force of the rebel reinforcements began moving up and advancing through the valley once again. Like the vanguard, they built a number of pontoon bridges after exiting the valley, spared some of their troops to the other side of the river, and then marched on.

The main rebel force moved behind, while their poor vanguard was led by the “defeated Dark Army”, running wildly for more than 10 miles before plunging headlong into the main battlefield of the Third Legion.

This battle was the beginning of the Dark Army’s Third Legion and its commander Moya’s reputation on the continent.

The predecessor of the Third Legion should be the third unit of the Ninth Legion of the Protoss United Force, under the leadership of its abominable commander. This unit gradually grew during the P/A War, and finally matured.

It was this unit that built the labyrinth-like structure during the Clay City battle, leaving more than 300,000 battle-hardened, but dead AUF troops behind on the battlefield.

In Moya’s eyes, these rebels in front of them were really nothing to be mentioned about. He would not have ordered the soldiers to build this huge battlefield if it were not for Cohen’s order. Moya knew he intended to train the new recruits during this war.

When the rebels swarmed in large numbers, the Third Legion command reenacted the battle of the Clay City: closing the front of the main field after letting the enemy in. Although the intensity of the battle was not comparable to that of the Clay City, it was quite brutal for the new recruits.

Without the use of the latest gears, nor the use of the stone that had just arrived, nor the use of hunting squads, the Third Legion only sent out new recruits led by veterans to meet the battle in the ordinary way of positional warfare, and that was enough.

When the battle trumpet sounded, Leila, at Cohen’s request, chanted a dragon poem passed down through the generations. King Cohen listened serenely, unconcerned with the shouting and killing outside.

Leila also understood in her heart that countless killings were taking place outside while her soft voice was ringing out, but she could not refuse Cohen’s request – the man in front of her was at least not yet intoxicated with killing.

And on the battlefield ahead, men were impaled by a spiked stake, their bodies hanging in mid-air was twisting grotesquely.

Someone had been cut off at the waist by a battle sword, and half of his body was crawling and twitching in a pool of blood.

Some people were mad as they saw their partners fell one after another.

Some kneeled and begged for mercy, some cried out in pain.

Some shivered because they were killing for the first time, some vomited because they saw a corpse for the first time, some were excited, some were obsessed.

There can be no beauty in strife, tearing with flesh and steel, burying the living with killing…” Cohen commented after listening to the poem, “I like this part, this is the essence of war. “

“If you can really remember, I will be very happy.” Leila replied lightly, “I hate to be surrounded by the smell of blood, as I am now.”

“Although pride is the nature of the dragons, you need to understand one thing.” Cohen took a step closer and whispered to Leila, “You are not qualified to teach me a lesson.”

Then he rushed out of the room on the pretext of inspection before Leila got angry.

The 15,000 mixed rebels of infantry and cavalry were shunted and absorbed by Dark Army’s new recruits, and all the battle was over within an hour. Amidst the cheers of the green hands, more than 8,000 terrified captives were escorted to the open field behind.

“Since they are captive status, they should be treated and obligated accordingly; their only use is to remind the world not to go against me.” So said the king amongst the rumors. So the captives were escorted to Carson.

King Cohen Kheda, in his splendid gown, entered the battlefield with his personal escort. Leila hesitated outside the pit, which smelled of blood, and eventually followed him in.

The group turned a few corners in the pit tunnel. They first visited the medical area.

A junior officer standing at the corner was suddenly struck by lightning, his body tensed up in an instant and shouted, “king on the spot, a-ten-hut!”

“The wounded stay put. Physicians, do your jobs!” Cohen overcame his impulse to return the salute, and with a genial gaze swept as a replacement: “Do we have lots of casualties?”

“Your Grace, there are not many wounded.” The head physician hurriedly trotted over and stood aside with his hands down to reply: “Most of them have minor injuries. Some were just carried back from the frontline.”

“Check carefully, for those who can fight, let them rejoin their units; for those who cannot send them back to heal.” Cohen examined the injuries of several soldiers: “Is the new healing potion effective?”

“Compared to its native soil, the effect is somewhat reduced, it seems to be a problem with the earth.” The chief physician took out a small bottle of potion: “However, Your Grace, this is also much better than the old version.”

“Very well!” Cohen nodded and walked into the medical area and asked about a few seriously injured people.

“I got medals prepped for the troops attacking the capital, but now it looks like you wounded fools will just have to go back and lie on the bed!” Cohen suddenly raised his voice and said to the wounded. All men were struck and dumbfounded. Is it a fault to be bravely wounded?

“See?.” Cohen took a shiny silver medal from Malphite: “How about this piece of little thing, a symbol of courage and wisdom? Isn’t it beautiful?”

The wounded were both sad and aggrieved. Some of the recruits were already brewing sad and sour tears.

“What? Not convinced, huh? My soldiers must be smart!” Cohen tossed the medal back to Malphite: “You have to fight with your heads, not just fight to the death. You have gone through systematic training, have the best armor and weapons on the whole continent. And you fight on a perfect battlefield to confront this rookie rebel army. And I can’t believe you actually get injured? You’re making me look bad!”

“But boss,” a battalion commander lying on his stomach raised his head and cried out, “We are fighting exactly according to the staff’s plan!”

“To tell you clearly, this battle was carefully designed by me, and its purpose is to let this rebel army train you. The situation on the battlefield changes quickly. If proved that you idiots can’t adapt to the situation.” Cohen walked over and threw a gentle slap at this battalion commander’s head: “According to my expectation, the wounded should be one-fifth of what they are now!”

“Yes, boss, I was wrong.” the battalion commander replied, rubbing his head contentedly.

“You have a few days to recover from your wounds, so here’s a chance.” Cohen suddenly raised his voice and asked, “Do you have the confidence to improve?”

“YES SIR!”

“What do you guys rely on to fight?”

“Our heads!”

“Do you want medals?”

“Yes!”

“Okay then!” the King smiled faintly: “I have your medals, come and get them.”


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

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