Translated by Tianic, edited by Grammarly
It had been a full day since the rebel reinforcements were jammed on the frontline.During one of the trials, tens of thousands of rebel soldiers were annihilated by Dark Army, and the blood of rebel soldiers flowed all over the battlefield, becoming a lubricant that speeded up the bonding of the new and old soldiers in the Third Legion. The rebel’s idiotic command style had also become a typical bad example for Royal Military Academy later on.
And the first principal and instructor of this Royal Military school was the one who was now sitting in the command headquarters, with wine in one hand and a whip in the other, the King – Cohen Kheda.
Cohen divided the officers in the command into three groups, taking turns to drill in the process of high command, logistics command, and frontline command.
The frontline troops were also directed very frequently. Cohen had tried to expose each of them to more and more complex battles, for which he did not hesitate to give up countless good chances to annihilate the enemy. Instead, he made time for the rebels to continue organizing their attacks.
After a day of fighting, the senior officers of the Third Legion had understood the King’s intentions and they cooperated with Cohen’s plan in a more positive manner.
At the same time, in order to ensure that the rebels would not play any tricks, the elite wingmen troops and cavalry troops had already entered the assault position, ready to attack and end this “drill”.
The only downside was the harsh days for the new recruits who have not long joined the army suffered from such a training way.
Although the new recruits have trained before, that was in the training ground. There were instructors who would correct or scold their mistakes, or the worst would be a slap in the face. There was always a chance to start over.
But here this was a real battle, if you made a mistake, you will close your eyes forever. And at best, you will be remembered by your fellow soldiers during the holidays throughout the year.
The first time they fought, the recruits were so nervous that some of the actions they had done well in training would go awry.
This is exactly the meaning and purpose of King Cohen Kheda’s initiation of this campaign – instead of paying a high price to exercise in the high-intensity war later, it is better to gain experience first, at least so that the soldiers can get used to the vibe of the war.
In previous wars, because of the special nature of the soldiers, King Cohen Kheda never bothered about such things.
But this time, most of the recruits absorbed were honest farm boys, not slaves whose lives were hanging by a thread, nor were they the sons of the 36 tribes who had been uprooted, most of whom had never seen the sight of killing at all.
After eliminating the rebel front troops, King Cohen Kheda toured the battlefield. He saw a large number of disoriented recruits, some sat, crouching on the ground shivering, some leaning against the wall vomiting.
This was the fundamental reason why he later accepted Brigadier General Moya’s request for his command.
Since they had to shiver, they would shiver long enough in this battle; and those who had to vomit would vomit all at once in this battle.
In order to achieve such a purpose, King Cohen Kheda directed the Second Legion, which had disappeared for many days. The Second Legion, led by a deputy army commander, took a big detour in its marching route and appeared between the battlefield of the capital and the Third Legion, where they first ate the rebel rear-guard troops in one bite before sealing the rebels’ retreat to flee back.
In fact, as early as that afternoon, the rebel commander – the lieutenant general – had already learned that the rear road was blocked. After going through mental struggles, This excellency sent someone to negotiate a surrender. But the King had the rebel envoy’s head chopped off without even seeing him. If the rebels had surrendered, where could they find such a competent target force?
Night fell and the battle came to an end. There were starry campfires on the side of the rebel forces, and it was dark on the Dark Army side of the battlefield.
King Cohen Kheda ate dinner, called a meeting to set up the night defense. Then he just sat and stared. Brigadier General Moya came twice but did not dare to disturb him when he saw Cohen’s deep thoughtfulness.
By the third time, it was almost dawn when the King finally spoke.
“Moya, have the casualties of the rebels been counted yet? What is the situation on the other battlefield.” Cohen looked at him, “Did they attack again just now?”
“Yes, Your Grace, they launched a night attack. According to our statistics, the rebels have suffered more than half of the casualties so far.” Moya walked behind Cohen, “They had also tried to break out backward, but the Second Legion sealed off their retreat.”
“You take over command well after dawn, and inform the general staff officer to report here.” Cohen stood up and went to the window and took a deep breath, “You finish the battle today and clear the passage.”
“Is it time to march on the capital?” Moya asked in surprise.
“Yes! It’s not a good idea to drag on like this, we’ve completed the curriculum anyway.” Cohen nodded, “As soon as the war started, things piled up, and I almost forgot a few very important ones.”
“If you can, please let me do it!”
“You? What are you thinking about! This is all my personal and private business.” Cohen smiled lightly, “Mind your troops! My army leader. Once we hit the capital, we’ll have to take charge of the empire.”
“Your Grace, are you troubling yourself for the future of the empire?”
“I’m not a monster, of course, I’ll have a lot of headaches, being a king is such a hard job, no wonder Fischer doesn’t want to take it up.” Cohen walked to the table with a bitter smile and picked up a glass of wine in his hand, “I say, Moya, what would you do if I became an outlaw madman?”
Moya shook his head, “You wouldn’t, Your Grace.”
“Am I not walking on the path of a madman?” Cohen sipped his red wine and smiled like a self-deprecating commoner, “Answer me.”
“Even if Your Grace becomes a lunatic, you are still my boss.” Moya replied expressionlessly, “I may leave when my loved ones are healthy, but I will guard them in the moments of need.”
Cohen turned around and stared at the stout man with curious eyes. Moya took this gaze quite openly.
“This is the first time I’ve heard you say something like that, when did you learn it?” Cohen asked, “Was it poetry?”
“No, I heard it was something my mother said. Actually, my mother passed away so long ago that I’ve only heard my father recite it a few times.” Moya’s gaze lowered, “I can’t remember her face, that’s the only memory I have of her.”
“Do you miss home?” Cohen nodded, felt his friend at ease, “Is your hometown in ……?”
“In Rivalz Empire, near Symbia. I don’t miss that shit at all.”
“That’s far enough away.” Cohen walked over and leaned over to whisper something in Moya’s ear before patting him on the shoulder and walking out with a chuckle.
Brigadier General Moya was dumbfounded and the helmet he was holding fell off and rolled all the way to the corner.
“Ah! I almost forgot to tell you, if you say something that warm next time, please make sure you speak with your voice. You’ll be taken for a homicidal maniac if you speak with an expressionless face.” Cohen turned back again and leaned his body against the door frame, “After this battle, go back and see your brother! Jack has such a clean and proper face, he must have had a very beautiful mother.”
Brigadier General Moya said nothing but nodded his head.
After dawn, the poor rebel troops made a final struggle for their survival. The sound of killing on the battlefield was loud, while the King slept peacefully in the noisy environment.
When the general staff officer arrived on orders, there was no more fighting at the front of the battlefield, but rather a scattering of rebel troops ran over to surrender, and from what these men revealed, the rebel command was in disarray.
Some rebel troops did their old job in order to make a proper tribute of their surrendering, they attempted to assassinate their commander to please King Cohen Kheda. After the failed assassination, the remaining rebel troops mutinied and many soldiers abandoned their horses and fled into the mountain ranges on both sides of the plain. Now only a few troops are still staying near the command, and that lieutenant general has been seriously wounded.
“In that case, there is no longer any need to fight this battle.” Letting Leila dress himself, Cohen instructed Moya across the screen, “Accept their surrender, you have 2 hours to clean up the mess, and we will march to the capital this evening.”
After Brigadier General Moya left, the General Staff officer asked, “Your Grace, what about the battle over in Carson City?”
“Are they willing to surrender?”
“Accept it.” Cohen considered for a moment, “Then inform the military judge to execute all Carson’s civil and military officials for insulting the royal family.”
“All of them?” Carlos was a little surprised, “Shouldn’t we leave some behind? Executing all the surrendered officials will have a bad effect on the King’s reputation.”
“What is the color of the jewel on the crown? Red, as brilliant as blood, ah. And only such a color can crown the majesty of the kingdom.” Cohen gave a light laugh, “Carlos, we still have many provinces to take down! Do you think they’re gonna kneel, willingly? I’m just doing it to show them that I, Cohen Kheda, am such a virtuous individual. Better go home if they can’t stand me.”
“There is no problem in that. Since I didn’t do anything to the officers who surrendered elsewhere, I just wanted to treat them differently.” Cohen glanced at the Leila who was organizing his costume, “If the Leila was not here, I would have told you to bury the surrendered soldiers, alive and together.”
Even Leila, whose connotation was unfathomable, didn’t maintain a good grace to glare at him at this time.
“Don’t roll your eyes, it’s not like I want to be the king.” Facing Leila’s silent condemnation, Cohen revealed a grin, “In fact, out of all these people, I’m the most innocent.”
“Your Grace.” Carlos coughed dryly twice, “I’m still here…”
“I know you are, what’s wrong?”
“Boss ……” Cohen’s words made Carlos half-annoyed, “It seems you should dismiss me before joking with the lady.”
“Alas, Carlos, is your bachelor heart itching for a date? Watch out if Leila tosses you up in the air and throws you down.” Cohen came out from behind the screen and pointed to the chair next to him for Carlos to sit down, “Let’s clarify first that if Leila really wants to do that, I won’t stand in her way.”
“Boss!” Carlos whispered a cry, “You’re making your subordinate sad. I’ve followed you through countless dying battles and came out from the dead bodies!”
“When have I ever brought you out of the dead? You really talks like a guy who got a zero in literature?” Cohen replied with a smile, “I acquainted Fischer and Leila at the same time, for your information.”
“Here we go again ……” Carlos had a sad face, “It’s a sin to come late.”
“Hmm, since you prefer to flirt with me than excusing yourself, there must be something, right?” After joking, Cohen asked with a straight face, “Report!”
“I’m a little confused about this series of battles that you has planned, so I wanted to ask.”
“There’re no particular reasons behind it. I merely want to train the troops separately. All along, the three legions have their own strengths, and I want them to have both excellent defense and offense advantages.” Cohen sighed, “But it turns out that this plan of mine is ill-founded.”
“Is there a problem somewhere?”
“On the one hand, the rebels are not strong enough, and on the other hand, our recruits are not strong-willed enough. In addition, there are many flaws exposed during the operation this time.” Cohen’s eyebrows wrinkled up, “It seems we still need to plan early, establish a formal military academy and conduct formal training before we can do so.”
“Your Grace, our army is already very strong in combat. I am being fair in my assessment, our army can fight against any army on the continent.” At Cohen’s words, Carlos, who was the general staff officer, did not understand very well in his heart.
“Very strong, huh? Walk yourself to the battlefield later and look at those new recruits! Look at their pale faces. You’re right, our troops do have enough strength to defeat the rebels, but that’s not nearly enough, their combat capability is not up to my requirements.” Cohen waved his hand, “I haven’t slept much in the past few days, have been pondering an army revolution.”
Carlos opened his mouth wide and shouted out of breath, “Army revolution?!”
“Why are you so surprised?” Cohen stood up, “To achieve my strategic objectives, how many armies do we have to raise with the current available soldier’s ability? And to stay ahead amongst other empires, a revolution is imperative.”
“And… in what areas do we change?”
“All branches of the military have to change, from recruitment and training of soldiers all the way to logistics and so on.” Cohen looked at the surprised Carlos, “And the most important point is that the empire’s army must be in the hands of the supreme management level. The provinces and the noble class are not allowed to have armed forces. The army is for fighting wars, my wars.”
“The army exists independently? What about the maintenance of law and order in ordinary times?”
“The day-to-day policing is a matter for the internal affair system.” Cohen approached his general staff officer, “My initial plan is to establish theater commands in several directions of the empire to unify the command and dispatch of the armies within their jurisdiction.”
“You’ll have to let me think about it. My head is spinning again.” Carlos shook his poor head, “I’m still thinking about the matter at hand, but you’ve already thought about years ahead, Your Grace, is this the difference between a general staff officer and a king?”
“I’m still thinking about this matter. You just know a general idea, but be prepared for this idea. On the other hand, I’m kind of very productive today.” Cohen smiled slightly and threw a large stack of official documents onto the desk, “My general staff officer, look at the performance of our senior officers!”
“This is the paperwork of… opposing the King’s strategy during this war?” Carlos looked over the official documents, “All of them?”
“I deliberately made this battle confusing, the intention was to train the soldiers, but in the end, almost every officer at the level of joint commander wrote me official documents, pointing out many inappropriate aspects in my tactics and putting forward their own proposals.” Cohen said in a gratified tone, “I’m glad! Quite a few propositions are well written. Just this courage alone which they dare to speak up with their own suggestions makes me happy.”
“This shows that our officers are maturing, and with proper training, they should be able to take charge of their own, right?”
“After quelling the rebellion, I will expand my army.” Cohen said in a low voice, “The leaders will be chosen from among these people, but of course, they will have to learn more if they want to take the lead.”
“I now understand that the ultimate purpose of this strange battle is to discover talents.” Carlos nodded in relief, “Expansion of the army? How large?”
“I’m still thinking about the scale. Give me a hand, Carlos.”
“Sir, now that I think about it, your arrangement is considerate, but I know nothing about the movement of troops including the Second Legion. That’s not right?” Carlos was very dissatisfied, “I am your general staff officer, but as a result, I was like a fool jumping up and down, worrying about this and that, my heart is apprehensive…”
“Karos, you are a very steady man, if you do not jump up and down nervously, do you think I can get hold of these proposals?” Cohen smiled wistfully, “In Lissandra, from the moment I received the first proposal, I decided to not tell you.”
“I’m going to tell the Prince, you tricked me.”
“Feel free to do that, just think of it as a sacrifice for your country this time.” Cohen patted Carlos’ shoulder, “Walk with me. I’ll help you clear your head.”
(Three days later, Divine City, the Royal Palace)
King Luhrmann was sitting on the throne that didn’t belong to him, quivering all over. He was staring at the officials kneeling before him with an almost crazy look, but not a single word could come out of his mouth.
The appearance of the Dark Army near the capital, the disappearance of Princess Lisa and her husband, and the seizure of the main transportation route behind the capital. One bad news, too bad to be true, came one after another today, causing King Luhrmann’s spirit to suffer great torture.
The sudden disappearance of the Hand, whom he had always regarded as his best support, gave him a strong twinge. Luhrmann’s will, which had already become morbid, changed once again.
“Your Grace, we have captured several officers who attempted to flee.” An officer knelt down by the door of the palace to report, “May I ask Your Grace, what to do with them?”
“What to do with them?” Luhrmann lifted his drowsy head and said in a hoarse, unmistakable voice, “Kill… kill their whole families!”
“But the coin master and… .”
“Kill!” Luhmann threw the glass of wine in his hand at the officer, “Kill them for me!”
“Yes!” The officer crawled down with fear and trepidation.
“From now on, station a team of soldiers near every major court member! Whoever dares to run away, I will let his whole family die! Hahahahaha – heh heh heh heh! You eat my food, take my money, and try to run away when you see me in a bad light? No way! Even if I die, I will drag these people with me – hahahahaha!”
Luhrmann laughed wildly in the hall, the sharp laughter was like nails scraping across a rough stone surface, and in the end, the laughter had turned into a strange howl.
The officials kneeling on the floor were sweating, almost mad from the torture of their lord. Everyone understood in their hearts that the current Luhrmann was no different from a madman and that if they were not careful, their heads would have to fall.
That night, almost all the officials of the capital were unable to eat, each staring at his meal with a knife and fork.
The situation was quite clear now: Luhrmann will soon be finished, these officials are stirring their brains to think of a way out. If they can surrender, it would be good, but considering Cohen Kheda’s character, could he forgive those who have betrayed the royal family?
Amongst these officials, those who rose up in line with Luhrmann’s rebellion would naturally not be spared. These people were pariahs. Death would be considered worth it because they’ve enjoyed the sweet taste of money and power.
But the old court members, especially nobilities now began to regret their decisions. This good life could have lasted a lifetime. Due to their own obsession, and the small profit that Luhrmann had promised in order to persuade them to take part in the rebellion (the least also waved the flag for Luhrmann) had dragged their whole families down!
No one would want to die as a nobility? Not to mention take the whole house for Luhrmann’s martyrdom.
A pessimistic atmosphere prevailed among the noble class in Divine City.
As night fell, the latent forces of the Dark Army became active. So on this day, they carried out a wide-ranging operation behind the curtain of the darkness, which was later logged as the “The Shameless Trilogy” by other allied empires. The “Pre-war Salvation” kicked off.
On this extraordinary night, it was not Amart’s rogues or Marfa’s liaison officers who acted, but the personal intelligence system of Prince Visual Kheda, the Chancellor.
A large number of noble officials staged a large series of doors in the capital, and the homes of various officials were ushered in as if it were New Year’s Day, making the common people look at it with a hundred puzzled.
Prince Visual Kheda, a nobleman with a good reputation, if he knew what would happen later that night, god knew if he would still do so.
But one thing was certain: on this night, all the merchant roads leading to the capital were crowded with troops of the Dark Army. Illumination of torches merged, reflecting the whole night sky red. The scarlet night was so dazzling to see from afar.
In the palace, Luhrmann also pulled out his last resort. He first ordered that all the directors be invited into the palace for breakfast tomorrow morning on the matter of defense strategy, and then summoned the chief chamberlain and gave him a packet of powder. He told him to put the poison in the breakfast.
This chapter was originally published on Wuxianation, any despicable reposts or copies without proper citings are strictly prohibited.