BBYW Vol. 2 Chapter 29 (WN)
Chapter 29 – The Three Guardians
【POV: Dyngir Maxwell*】
*(TL Note: the original usually doesn’t list any POV when the perspective goes back to Dyngir, I added it to avoid any confusion)
The first day of war between the Margrave Maxwell forces and the Baal Empire ended with a crushing victory for our Maxwell forces.
As the sun set, the imperial forces withdrew into their camp. We setup troops to stand guard and spot any night raids, but today the empire would need to reorganize their troops more than us; it was unlikely for them to try anything that night.
“Well then, let’s hear today’s reports.”
With all skirmishes over for the day, I gathered the people in charge of each division in the command room, located in the center of the fortress. Their expressions showed fatigue and tension but did not seem disheartened at all.
“Anyone ready to report, go ahead and do it. We’re on the battlefield, forget about rank or formalities for now.”
“I will start, then.”
The first one to speak was Salm Silfis, in charge of the fortress’ northern walls.
“Nothing abnormal to report on the northern side. The Second Imperial Army attacked persistently from dawn to dusk, but we had no trouble dealing with them, even while preserving our forces. We did not need to use poison or gunpowder either.”
“Nothing to report on the south side either. The Imperial Knights are supposed to be the strongest elites of the empire, but they were nothing special, to be honest. We barely even got started.”
After Salm, Ladd Efreeta made his report. The old friend in charge of the fortress’ southern walls crossed his hands behind his head and put his feet on the table — quite unbecoming for the scion of a noble family.
“The imperial army is weaker than expected, huh. It was pretty easy for me too, even without going all out.”
“Indeed. Their handling of siege weapons was rather poor, I was frankly disappointed. I thought their level of preparation was too low, do they truly plan to take down this fortress like this?”
“Nah, it’s not like they’re weak or anything. It’s just a matter of using the right people at the right places.”
The Second Imperial Army had been fighting against the northern nomads all this time: tribes that lived in tents, moving every so often, without building towns or castles. The Second Imperial Army troops had little to no experience in sieges.
The same thing could be said about the Imperial Knights: their main duty was to defend the royal palace, the capital and its surroundings. They were never meant to invade enemy territory, so many of them had probably never even seen a siege weapon.
“The Second Imperial Army is most skilled at cavalry battles in open fields, the Imperial Knights at defensive battles. To order them to take down a fortress was a mistake in the first place.”
I don’t know who proposed that the empire’s three forces to attack separately, trying to win through numbers, but it was clearly a bad move. If they had all fought together, covering their reciprocal weaknesses, they would surely have become a force to be reckoned with.
As long as they kept bickering and getting in each other’s way, Fort Bryden was never going to fall.
“I see, that explains their weakness.”
“Gaah, what a drag! Let’s trade places, Young Master!”
“Haha, no way. I killed Bjorc Zagann in the last battle, so the First Imperial Army’s scared of me. They’ll be intimidated as long as I’m there.”
“Tch, what a pain…”
Ladd swung up and down his feet on the table, out of frustration. Considering he was in the presence of his lord, it was far too disrespectful an attitude, so Salm frowned.
“Ladd, think of where you are!! Show some respect for our Lord!”
“Hey, they said forget about rank or formalities, right!?”
“That has nothing to do with this! Remember your position as heir to House Efreeta! Such an attitude is…”
“It’s fine, Salm, he’s not going to listen anyway.”
I shrugged and put an end to their tussle. Ladd puffed his cheeks, annoyed, and Salm looked at him disapprovingly. I looked at them and grinned, exposing my fangs.
“Don’t worry, Ladd, I have a special stage ready for you at the end of this battle. So make you sure you have energy left.”
“Haha, you better remember those words. I’ll stay quiet, for now!”
Before the battle began, I gave one order to Ladd and Salm.
“Make sure the fortress walls are not breached. But fight while saving as much as possible.”
The north and south walls too are equipped with poison and gunpowder, but my order implied that I wanted Salm and Ladd not to use them, unless strictly necessary.
They followed such unusual orders faithfully: thanks to that, the plan I had painstakingly prepared could be finally used against the empire.
“I’m counting on you two. The enemy’s going to be using trickier strategies starting tomorrow, so stay alert out there.”
“Certainly, Young Master.”
“Leave’em to us. We’ll kick their asses…as softly as possible.”
“Hahaha, looking forward to that.”
I laughed with my reliable friends, then listened to the other reports.