BBYW Vol. 2 Chapter 35 (WN)
Chapter 35 – The First Imperial Army’s Demise
“GET OUT OF THE WAY, SMALL FRY!!”
The Maxwell cavalry, led by Ladd Efreeta, barged into the First and Second Imperial Armies’ battlefield. The sudden assault of this third party plunged the already stormy battlefield into even further chaos.
“We have two heads to take! Lars Baal and Grett Baal! You can smash the rest however you want!”
The Second Imperial Army was already shaken by the sudden assault suffered at the hands of their supposed allies, while the First Imperial Army was eager to take them down.
Both sides of the Imperial Army, however, were now haphazardly running away from the Maxwell knights.
Ladd tore through the battlefield, easily swatting away any stragglers. Whether it came from his judgment as a commander or animal instinct, it is not known, but he proceeded straight towards Lars Baal.
“Gh..! How can they be so fast!? Did Maxwell anticipate our actions!?”
Lars growled, surprised by the unexpected speed of the Maxwell forces’ advance.
He knew that conflict within the Imperial Army would have given an advantage to House Maxwell; because of that, he planned to take Grett’s head in one swift assault, then use the momentum to turn the army around and away from the battlefield.
The conquest of Fort Bryden would have to wait, but as long as he could eliminate Grett, Lars could become emperor even without taking down the Lamperouge Kingdom.
Lars’ quick decision was based on this plan; he could not foresee, however, that the Maxwell forces would leave the fort to attack them, as if they knew from the start that the First and Second Imperial Army were going to fight among themselves.
A chilling premonition ran down Lars’ back: either they completely saw through his plans, or he had been manipulated.
“There is no other choice…we must take down both the Second Imperial Army and the Maxwell forces!”
In a way, the fact that the Maxwell forces had left the fort was also a chance. If Lars’ forces could overcome this battle, they would triumph over both Grett and House Maxwell.
“Men, this is a chance like none other! Give it our all!!”
“Yes, my Prince!! The First Imperial Army shall be at Your side, until our last breath!!”
Less than one-tenth of the total numbers of the First Imperial Army, however, stood their ground and continued fighting. All of them, however, were elite soldiers ready to give their lives for Lars.
Sword and lance in hand, the soldiers surrounded Lars to cover him from all sides, clashing against the Maxwell knights head on.
The battle between the First Imperial Army and the Maxwell cavalry lasted about one hour.
“YESS!! IT’S OUR WIN!!!”
Ladd’s spear shot in the air as he shouted, followed by his troops’ victory cry. The corpses of the First Imperial Army soldiers were strewn all around them.
“This…can’t be…I…I can’t lose…!! I’m the…future emperor…!!”
The First Imperial Prince, Lars Baal too was among the lifeless bodies. The commander of the losing army was gravely wounded, but still clinging to life. He was lying face up on the ground, muttering under his breath as if he was chanting a spell.
“Where…where did I go wrong…? Was I…not destined to be emperor…?”
“No point in asking any of that to me, buddy.”
Ladd scoffed at the wheezing Lars.
“Who cares about right and wrong? We were stronger, so we won. Not enough of a reason for you?”
“You…bastard…! How could a barbarian…without ambition…hope to understand!? For Zagann…for all the men…who fell before me…I have to become…emperor…!!”
“You royals sure have it tough, huh. Good thing my family is from the countryside, I guess.”
Ladd shrugged and thrusted his lance in the ground, drawing his sword instead.
“They told me I don’t have to take you prisoner, but I’m not one to torment losers…what do you want to do? I’ll patch you up if you’ll stay quiet.”
Lars’ expression twisted in humiliation and he glared at Ladd. There was no chance of his fate turning around anymore: he would not become emperor or grasp anything anymore.
“…cut me down.”
Lars uttered the words, a pained expression on his face.
“I couldn’t…grant their wish…I couldn’t become emperor…then…to die as equals, on the battlefield…is the least I can do…”
“Sure, as you wish.”
Ladd twirled his sword, pointing the blade downwards, and thrusted it in Lars’ chest without hesitation.
“You guys lost in the end, but that last spurt of spirit you showed was pretty impressive. As the Young Master would say, you’ve earned the right to rest, I guess.”
Ladd took out his sword and praised Lars — though there was no one that could listen anymore.
Lars Baal, First Prince of the Baal Empire, had fallen in the enemy territory.
The First Imperial Army, sworn enemy of House Maxwell for years, thus met its demise.