Translated by Tianic, edited by Grammarly
May 29th, 2233, Light Calendar, Cohen Kheda, the 17th King of Swabia, led his army to besiege the capital of the empire. Participants of the final battle were the majority of the First Legion, a part of the Second Legion, a part of the Third Legion, as well as the troops from the staff, with a total of 80,000 soldiers.
All provinces adjoining the three provinces, which the Kheda house had control over, had been recovered. Several provinces close to the capital, where the rebels had a heavy presence, were also occupied by the Kheda house forces.
To look at the whole picture, the House of Kheda has recaptured 9 provinces one after another, the rest provinces had no considerable amount of enemies. Hence the war against the rebels has successfully entered the final stage.
The capital – the banner of the rebels, the key to the war of the rebellion.
If the attack on Divine City was quick and clean, it will become the end of the rebellion. With such a victory at hand along with some political diplomacy, it will be possible to force the unaffiliated provinces to bend their knees.
If the battle is not well fought and all the provincial governors and noble classes were not well-threatened and thus refused to submit, then even if Luhrmann was killed, there will be a second and third Luhrmann. This civil war may drag on endlessly and become a nightmare for Swabia.
Therefore, Prince Visual Kheda wrote to King Cohen Kheda in his own name and in the name of the City Hall, stating the advantages and disadvantages and asking King Cohen to take the capital within the shortest time possible.
The officials in charge of the ministries, one after another, also sent letters. The president of the Royal Academy even indicated in his letter that the king could ignore collateral damage so long as the battle could be ended as soon as possible, even if Divine City was reduced to rubble, and that the reconstruction would not be a matter of concern for the king.
Cohen Kheda, who was traveling while reading the letters, could not stop a pang of distress and flung the papers aside.
“Your Grace, are you all right?” The general staff officer at the side turned his head to look at Cohen, “We are riding in such a luxurious carriage, the road is not rough, and it is broad daylight, what are you sulking about?”
“Look at this letter, my dad lectured me, that’s ok.” Cohen grabbed a handful of letterheads and tossed them up, “Look at how these ministers are abetting me!”
“Likewise, I got them too. The ministers are asking me to do something so that the king will hit the capital faster.” A heartfelt smile appeared on Carlos’ face, “I never thought that I, a poor staff officer, would still get so many letters from the high court members.”
“Why are you so poor? You are ranked above everyone except for Grandpa Luther!” Cohen snorted coldly and slapped the letterheads on the table.
Leila glanced at him and gestured towards his personal guard, signaling him to come over and put away the scattered letterheads.
“Why am I not pitiful?” With a bitter face, Carlos began breaking his fingers to tell his grievances, “I’m a freaking General Chief of Staff, and I’m constantly scolded, yelled at, flirted with, ignored. I even have to tell jokes to people to relieve their boredom. As someone who failed literature, I’ve got to make poems.”
“Well, no one’s life is easy! Is this even painful for you? Is it miserable? If this is misery, then what I am?” Of course, Cohen knew the ‘individual’ Carlos was referring to, “The next time I see you break your fingers, I’ll make you cry!”
“Here we go, threatening…”
“Fine…” Cohen looked around for a judge, but no one around was suitable, so he faced the dragon, “Leila, who do you say is more miserable?”
Leila stood calmly, not intending to speak, but Cohen’s gaze had firmly ensnared her, and Leila knew that if she did not speak, she would become the most miserable one.
“Both of you are happy now, having happiness that people are so jealous of that they want to take it away immediately.” Although she opened her mouth, the proud character of the dragon race did not allow Leila to say words to please someone, “You lot are close to the capital and victory is in sight, so you are acting too excited.”
After hearing Leila’s words, Cohen nodded in a pretentious manner and turned his head to yell at Carlos, “See! Leila even said you were overly excited!”
Carlos, who took all the blame, was upset and still took over the words without knowing what was going on, “I’m just a small staff officer. Leila couldn’t have used ‘you lot’ to address… me. I know I was wrong, I was the one who was overly excited.”
“Huh, smart.” Cohen released his fierce gaze, leaned his head back in his chair, closed his eyes, and asked Carlos, “Any news from the capital?”
“Yes, sir, Amart and Marfa have joined forces and they are ready to move.” Speaking of business, Carlos also put away his playful expression, “The infiltration plan has gone relatively smoothly, except for the capital’s defense magic array. Everything else has been completed.”
Cohen stood up and walked in circles in the wide carriage.
“Your Grace, actually you don’t need to be so troubled, just go with your idea.” Carlos knew that Cohen’s mood was not very good right now, “Although the capital is the past king’s hometown, he must also have hated this city. He preferred Dark City. Even if the place is smashed, there are still many places to remember the late king.”
“I’m not gonna feel sorry for destroying anything, even if it’s a place where Fischer was born. Fischer is here.” Cohen pointed to his heart, “I take into account nothing more than the hundreds of thousands of people in the capital, they have had enough bullying in the capital rebellion. If I order to destroy their homes, how am I gonna tell Fischer?”
“Tell… tell the late king?” Carlos opened his mouth with an expression like an idiot.
“Yes! Tell Fischer, do you wanna go?” Cohen lightly glossed over this biggest secret, “What else does that old bastard Luhrmann have to sing? Nothing more than that he wants to defend himself to the death and fight to the death. Damn this scum, he still wants to have an epic duel with me? Pooh!”
“In the War before the last P/A War, PUF had marched down our capital, but with this magic shield, Divine City held on for three months.” Carlos shook his head, “Your concern is not unreasonable. We may want to delay the attack until the magic array is sabotaged. However, by then, the capital civilians will have to starve to death.”
“That’s why it’s annoying, can I get the stone throwers to toss food instead of rocks?” Cohen suddenly turned around, “That old bastard Lorenzo suggested that I completely destroy the capital. He did not think it through. Once the capital is destroyed, my people would take me as the second Luhrmann. What’s behind my house during this war? The people’s support!”
“Master Lorenzo is just anxious! He was concerned about the war.”
“Good, the temper tantrum is over.” Cohen returned to his seat, “Chief Staff Officer, what’s powering the defense magic array?”
“By the various magical gems that were laid out when the city was built, and the sorcerers who control the array within the central magic formation.” Carlos explained, “Your Grace, you do know.”
“Thinking while listening to others is how I reflect.” Cohen said, “A sorcerer consumes a lot of mana when manipulating the array, correct?”
“Correct, the mana consumed is proportional to the attacker’s magic strike received.” Carlos nodded and replied, “If we had ten to twenty thousand elven warlocks, we could wear out the enemy sorcerers in a very short time, but we only have at most two thousand warlocks on hand.”
“Oh, it’s actually not a bad idea.” Cohen laughed a few times and turned his head to Leila, “O my most trusted Leila! I have something to tell you.”
Then silence fell in the carriage. Carlos looked at Cohen and Leila with a confused look on his face. The two’s eyes engaged in constant flickering as they looked at each other.
The caravan escorting the king entered the central army pavilion. There was a high turret in the camp built for King Cohen to command the battle, exactly ten miles from the walls of the capital.
The sky above Divine City was being tightly covered by a huge white arch-shaped dome of light. That was the magic boundary constructed by the city’s defense magic array – a solid barrier that eliminated all magic attacks (except forbidden magic)!
Without resting, King Cohen led the generals up to the commanding post.
“Do you see the capital?” King Cohen walked to the fence, pointed his finger at the city in front of him, and asked the generals loudly, “What does it mean to you to see this city?”
Apparently, the king’s generals were good at fighting, but poor at talking.
Someone said, “It means that the war is almost over!” And the king glared at him.
Another said, “It means that the king is officially enthroned!” He was hit on the head.
In the end, Brigadier General Moya, with his everlasting calm face, gave the correct answer, “Seeing the capital means you’ll have to fight with more precision and tolerate no mistakes.”
“Moya is right, what is going on in your brains? Ask yourselves, if you give me that answer, can I make you a general without getting worried?” King Cohen euphemistically revealed the victory reward to these officers, “More precise, and refined combat, this is your only goal to pursue in the future.”
“Yes, Your Grace!” Because of the king’s words, the officers were greatly encouraged.
“The entire battle plan has been drawn up, it’s all loaded in my head, and all the orders you have to carry out meticulously.” King Cohen faced the capital with a cold smile, “The intelligence says that the capital is short of food and the inhabitants are starving, but they are my people and I have the obligation to take care of them. If I am not capable of saving my people, then the only way is to endure it together with them.”
“Suffer together?” The officers did not understand and asked in unison.
“Yes! Suffer together.” King turned around, with a righteous look on his face, and replied softly, “Listen, from now on I will not eat either, nothing till you have victory..”
“Boss── you can’t not eat!”
“Sir, piece of cake!”
The officers didn’t expect that the king would come up with such a vicious trick, and they all panicked for a while, calling names indiscriminately, except for Moya and Carlos who laughed in their hearts.
“What the hell are you talking about! Go! Prep for the attack.” King Cohen waved his hand in a determined manner, “First, tear down the walls!”
The officers rushed down from the turret and ran to their own troops, cursing “Luhrmann, the old bastard, let’s skin him” along the way. It was absolutely unacceptable for them to cause the king not to eat because of their incompetence.
At the top of the turret, Leila approached Cohen and asked worriedly, “Is it true that the intelligence says that the food in the capital has been cut off?”
“No! It said that Luhrmann had sent some food, which could last for ten days to a half month.” Cohen replied with a relaxed demeanor.
“Then you just said…” Leila blinked, a little unsure.
“I lied.” Cohen looked at Leila with very innocent eyes, like nothing had happened, “Don’t you understand?”
“I don’t.” Leila’s eyes lowered, “For a dragon, cheating is a felony.”
“Don’t be a deadhead, what is the king?” Cohen was in good spirits, smiled and said to Leila, “the king is just like a rogue head, a dirty office. Both have to cheat to make a living, so one has to come up with one conspiracy after another. The one who has the most effective conspiracies is the most outstanding king.”
“I can’t stop what has happened.” Leila raised her eyes, the gaze revealed an unmistakable determination, “But I can’t look at the present and not do something about it. Therefore I will watch you. Cohen Kheda, don’t expect to eat anything till you take the capital.”
Cohen’s smile froze, “Leila, no need to be so serious, okay?”
“Unless I die, I cannot turn a blind eye to deception.” Leila replied, “This is how sad our race is.”
“It’s my sorrow, right? I’m a little hungry right now.”
“You asked for it.”
Cohen was well aware of the dragon race’s problem, and the only thing he could do was to blame himself for being careless and actually saying such a thing in Leila’s face.
Although the King was not willingly starving, “The king will not eat until the capital is taken.” This phrase, however, spread to all positions in a very short period of time.
This lie was logged a “costly lie” later amongst the empire’s high positions. However, King Cohen did not learn a lesson from it. From then on, he began to step on a path of creating lies and conspiracies, and he really enjoyed it.
No matter what, from the point of view of an army that idolized and treated the king as a god, a single hair of King Cohen was more valuable than all the people in the capital combined, and the soldiers cannot tolerate any slightest aggravation of the king.
The soldiers were not sure how much time it would take to break into the gate, nor did they know how long people would be starved to death, but they knew that if they didn’t want King Cohen to starve, they had to take down the capital sooner!
This rushing resentment was building up on the battlefield, and soon the attack was launched.
“Fuck you, Luhrmann.” The front-line commander spat in the direction of the city walls, “Catapults ── fire!”
In desperation, the stone-throwers were replenished with specially made rocks: a rock with a stomach full of kerosene, a shell on the outside, and a rag wrapped around that was oozing with kerosene and lit up!
The vicious curses saw more than 1,000 rocks on fire rise up in the air and sweep towards the walls of the capital, leaving a large trail of black smoke from burning kerosene in the air, black and whirling.
This was not a magical attack, so the rocks passed through the magic barrier easily.
The thin stone shell only ensured that it would not break when it took off, but when it hit the ground, the shell was guaranteed to break. So there were spurts of kerosene everywhere flowing from the top of the city walls, and the flames spread instantly, making the soldiers on the walls cry out, and quite a few of them jumped off the walls directly when they were burned.
“Good, good fight!” On the high tower of the camp, a hungry man shouted, “Burn these motherfuckers!”
The black smoke rushing to the sky was accompanied by the warlocks’ assembly. All the warlocks within the Dark Army were here, but the officers were not satisfied. They also assembled any soldiers who were capable of casting long-range magics.
“Strike! More strikes!” The commanders were shouting for the first time at these sorcerers of special status, “Hit with the most powerful magic!”
“You can’t use the most powerful.” The leading grand elf retorted, “Strike the magic barrier with only the most skilled and practical magic.”
“The king is hungry!”
“I know.” The leader ordered loudly, “Divide into two groups, use lightning, and strike the same point without interruption.”
The magicians bowed and then began to chant as a group.
On the walls, the stone bombs were powering the fire, and the kerosene kept flowing, driving the blazing fire that gradually shrouded the entire wall.
The smoke choked the soldiers near the walls with a handful of tears, the capital residents were also scared. Very soon, the city resounded with patches of tragic cries, and even the intelligence systems of other parties lurking in the capital were startled by the sight. They really thought that Cohen Kheda was going for a massacre.
In the sky, clouds of brewing lightning magic gathered, and after continuously piling up and twisting, all clouds merged and formed a thick black entity that almost cut off the light above.
Amidst the loud sound, countless silver-white lightning flashed with blinding light and struck straight down at the magic barrier!
Although a single lightning bolt’s damage was not terrifying, the lightning magic had a continuous effect, plus it fell on the same area, hence the result could not be taken lightly.
The sorcerer in charge of maintaining this area in the rebels’ closely protected magic array was an old man. Because the attack came suddenly and violently, his body was struck and began to shiver. A fine bead of sweat immediately appeared on his forehead. The sorcerer next to him noticed that something was wrong and called for help.
But the commanders of the Dark Army did not intend to go easy on these maintainers, they formed up all the soldiers in the army who could use long-range magic, and began to release magic in turn to start a magic defense “interference war”!
Wasn’t there a saying? Pressure drives motivation. Under the pressure of King’s hunger, the imagination and creativity of the middle-ranking officers were completely driven. They commanded the soldiers to conduct multiple magic strikes in multiple directions, and the troops worked together seamlessly.
The sky above the capital was sparkling with magical light of various colors, and if it wasn’t for the murderous aura in it, it would have been simply flowing with light and beauty.
Within the capital’s magic array, it was in a state of confusion and panic. They were supposed to change shifts once every three hours, but now it was less than a quarter of an hour before someone started to howl.
“I’m out! Get someone here in my stead! No mana!”
Meanwhile, in the palace, a rebel officer reported the news to King Luhrmann.
“Your Grace, if it continues, we won’t have enough sorcerers! If they do it a few more times, the sorcerers won’t have time to recover their magic power, by then the magic barrier will have a leak!”
“Don’t panic!” Luhrmann stared at the red eyes and said slowly, “Immediately start recruiting capable hands within the city, anyone who can cast magic. Fortify the defense. Go ask the temple for help, tell them that if the capital is taken, there will be no good consequences for them either!”
“Yes! Yes, Your Grace! We’ll get right on it!”
But the temple had long been ordered not to have anything more to do with the rebellion in the Swabia Empire, so it only sent three white priests out as a token, which made the officers waiting outside furious.
So, the rebel officers could only turn to the major sorcerers’ guilds located in the capital for help. Rather than asking for help, one would say the guild members were actually escorted out the door with knives on their backs. Amongst them, there was a very special character.
She was the first person in the whole continent to see and embrace Cohen Kheda, a woman. It was by her hand that Cohen Kheda, who was a combination of all evils, came into the world.
Because of her special friendship with the Kheda house, the Holy Maiden of the capital Sorcerer’s Guild, Bellatrix, was also the key person targeted by the rebels.
Since the beginning of the rebellion, she had been disguised and hidden in the magician’s guild to avoid all searches, but she did not expect that the rebel soldiers would go from room to room to arrest people, and the saint who lived in seclusion was also brought out.
Soon, she and several of her personal disciples were escorted to the magic array.
This chapter was originally published on Wuxianation; any despicable reposts or copies without proper citings are strictly prohibited.