Translating Japanese Web Novels into English

WM V1C0222

Chapter 0222 Defense of the Western Forest Part 2

Translator: Jay_Forestieri

Editor: Tseirp

 

“Chief Carson, it appears that the invasion of the Empire Troops has begun.”

Sensing unusual activity from the outer edge of the forest, an advance team led by Roxley, under the order of Autonomous Region Chief Carson, went in to scout the area and brought back information.

“Ugh…. To think he prioritized the annihilation of the Western Forest over the Royal Capital…that wretched Emperor!”

Carson muttered quietly.

 

 

The Elf Autonomous Region is located in the royal capital.

But it had been hurriedly evacuated by order of the Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Knightley.

 

The ones that were evacuated were this group of fifty elves, led by Chief Carson.

They’re all the elves from the royal capital, including those who were enrolled in the Magic University.

Thanks to that, they were not caught up in the fall of the capital, but the evil hand of the Empire had already reached the western forest to which they had fled.

 

“We must gather information as quickly as possible.  If we play our cards right, we may be able to form a pincer attack against the enemy between us and the ‘forest’.”

Carson quickly gave the order.

Since the invasion had already begun, it was clear that it was a race against time.

 

 

“The main force appears to have abandoned the eastern part of the forest. The watchtowers to the southeast and northeast have been burned. And the eastern fortress has been occupied by Imperial troops.”

“You’re saying both watchtowers were burned down, yet the eastern fortress is intact?”

“Yes sir.”

Roxley, who led the scouting party, nodded and replied to Chief Carson’s question.

 

“I see…”

Carson said, then turned his head slightly and began to think about something.

 

He mumbled while pondering.

“The central fortress is the line of defense…a trap…perhaps the imperial army lot are good at fighting in the forest…the vanguard, the fortress, and a rear base on the outer edge…the commander is most likely Obaba-sama…”

 

Roxley remained silent, waiting for instructions.

Roxley, who once had his hand broken by Sera, had now grown to be Chief Carson’s right-hand man, serving as the captain of the advance team.

 

Two minutes later.

 

“Now I see, I understand what Obaba-sama is trying to do.”

Carson nodded and muttered.

 

Roxley had no idea, but it is said that among the Kingdom Elves, Obaba-sama and Carson are especially good at ‘reading the development’ like he just did.

However, Roxley’s awe-inspiring opponent, ‘Lady Sera’, was not one of them.

She is special…at least that’s how Roxley sees her in his mind.

 

Anyway, it seemed that the course of action had been decided in Carson’s mind.

 

“We’re standing by, right here.”

“Eh…”

Carson declared so, and Roxley was absolutely stunned.

Like, is this not a race against time, where every minute counts?

 

“We’ll make our moves the exact moment Obaba-sama takes action. You very well make sure not to miss the moment the enemy’s advance troops start attacking the central fortress.”

 

 

 

“So that’s the fortress huh?”

Nyus, the captain leading the vanguard of the Imperial ‘Shadow Army’, confirmed with his subordinate beside him.

“Yes, sir. The main force of the elves is holed up in that fortress.”

“With the expanse around the fortress, we can rule out getting close using the trees as cover…. I get it, seeing as we had no qualms fighting in the forest, they’re taking the initiative to bring the fight out in the open to make it easier on them, uh.”

Captain Nyus said, nodding his head.

 

Of course, he was not underestimating them.

 

The ‘shadows’ have suffered over two hundred casualties, which is quite extraordinary.

The opponent they’re up against this time is one capable of such an extraordinary feat.

 

But…in terms of the number of combatants, they are overwhelmingly outnumbered.

The elves have at most three hundred men.

While the ‘shadows’ currently deployed in the forest number 1,800. That is roughly six times as many.

 

 

When there’s a numerical advantage, the most effective strategy with the highest probability of success is a frontal attack.

A simple and direct all-out attack denying the enemy of any ‘flukes’.

It goes without saying, there will certainly be casualties on their side. Although there will be casualties, history also tells of how very little it allows for tides to turn once the course has been set.

 

 

Captain Nyus, after receiving permission from General Rancias, who was in command of the eastern fortress, launched the attack.

A frontal attack on the fortress.

It was an all-out attack, mobilizing the thousand ‘shadows’ deployed in the vanguard.

 

Even so, they were ‘shadows’.

They didn’t make unnecessary noises as they charged forward.

They blended into the shadows of the night and approached silently.

 

When the leading vanguard approached the break in the forest and the midpoint of the fortress, countless fire arrows flew out from the fort.

Of course, no one in the ‘shadow army’ would be hit by such arrows.

No matter how sensitive to sound the elves are, firing such easily recognizable fire arrows, is like asking for them to be avoided.

 

However…the fire arrows were not aimed at the imperial army.

 

The fire arrows pierced the ground at precise, evenly spaced intervals.

Captain Nyus was puzzled by the sight, but of course, he had already investigated beforehand that there were no oil or other traps on the ground.

For they’re ‘shadows’. Not some dumb unit that would fall for such traps.

 

Sure, the ‘shadows’ running on the ground became exposed to light from the fire arrows that continued to burn even after getting stuck in the ground.

But what does it matter?

With their mobility and combat strength, not even elven arrows can hit them.

 

Yes, under normal circumstances, they would not hit.

 

The change was sudden.

 

As if an enormous force of gravity had been applied, and the ‘shadows’ were unable to move.

“What…the…hell…?”

The action of all thousand-strong vanguard, including captain Nyus, was inhibited.

 

“Wind…?”

It was a powerful downburst from above.

Moreover, it was happening over an unbelievably wide area, the entire area in front of the fort.

 

The ‘shadows’ were completely stopped in their tracks by the intense storm from above.

 

And then, countless arrows came flying from the fort toward them while they were at a complete halt.

Oddly enough, the surrounding area was illuminated by the fire arrows, which remained stuck in the ground, not extinguished despite such strong winds.

Making them ideal for target practice.

 

And the archers in question are Elves.

No way in hell they’d miss.

 

However, those being targeted were no slouch either.

Even if their movement had been sealed, their arms could still move.

They were repelling the arrows flying toward them with the gauntlets on their hands.

 

Understandably, the sight startled even Obaba-sama, who was watching from the fort.

“I’ll be damned…. I knew they were not simple. Aim for their legs, from the knees down, where they can’t reach.”

 

The instructions given by Obaba-sama were also quite nasty.

In a standing position, the range they can reach with their hands, in other words, the range they can protect themselves with the gauntlet, is up to their knees.

And from the knees down, it’s fair game.

 

Furthermore, Obaba-sama had noticed that the ‘shadows’ did not wear any kind of ankle armor on their feet to perform stealth actions.

Then again, if they were to adjust to a sitting position with their knees bent, they could protect their entire bodies with their gauntlets…but that would mean giving up moving altogether, which was synonymous with being shot to death there.

 

There were more than one incoming arrows.

 

The archers are elves.

It’s a cakewalk for them to shoot two or three arrows in one shot.

Add rapid firing on top of that.

A fast archer shoots thirty arrows in ten seconds. With all of them hitting the target no less.

 

 

General Rancias, commanding from the eastern fortress, was immediately informed of the situation in which the vanguard forces had fallen into.

“So they did set a trap after all.”

 

He had naturally assumed that they were likely to come across some sort of trap in front of the fort that might cause them a few losses.

He didn’t anticipate that it would be a downburst to stall them, and quite frankly he couldn’t care less.

They’d still end up crushed.

They had the numerical advantage.

 

“All right, I’ll lead four hundred to flank their fort, just as planned. Amber, you’re in charge of this fort.”

“Roger.”

Leaving the eastern fort in the hands of his second-in-command Amber, General Rancias led his four hundred men toward the northwest.

 

Avoiding the open ground in front of the central fort, where a thousand vanguards are stranded, they made a turn north in an anticlockwise manner forming a semicircle, and then raid the central fort from the north.

This maneuver should be successful, since the elves, who are by no means abundant in force, will have concentrated almost all of their strength to fighting the vanguard of the ‘shadow army’.

 

They have six times their numbers. If used properly, this battle may as well be a foregone conclusio

 

However, one minute after General Rancias led his troops out of the eastern fortress, cries arose from all over the eastern fortress.

Some cries of desperation, some cries of wailing, and even some muffled, inarticulate cries…arose from all over the eastern fortress.

 

After those cries stopped, it became quiet.

 

Completely, and totally quiet.

The eastern fortress was dead silent.

 

All that remained were the bodies of the four hundred people left in the fort, including Amber, the second-in-command…or more precisely, the bodies with several holes drilled in them.

If Rin from the ‘Crimson Sword’ had seen them, she probably would have said…”looks like they got hit by a Bullet Rain”.

 

 

“Dammit, the activation was a tad bit late! ”

Chief Carson was feeling a little frustrated.

 

The ‘eastern fortress trap’ takes time to activate…and had it activated a little sooner, the four hundred troops that left earlier would have also been caught and buried together in one fell swoop….

 

That got him frustrated.

Nevertheless, it was a remarkable success.

 

The reason why Obaba-sama retreated, leaving the eastern fort intact, was to let the imperial troops occupy it.

She had also anticipated the arrival of Carson and the other retreating forces from the royal capital, and intended to have them set off the trap at the eastern fortress.

 

It was a pretty risky gamble… What would have happened if the retreating force from the royal capital had not arrived?

Probably nothing.

 

The only thing that would have happened is a change in approach…by simply engaging the enemy in front of the central fortress and then activating the trap after they’ve been forced to retreat into the eastern fortress.

However, for that to succeed, they would have to repel the enemy in front of the central fortress.

 

Even Obaba-sama couldn’t be certain of that.

Which is why the move from Chief Carson and his unit was a good one.

 

Now they can push forward from the east and pincer the enemy vanguard forces that are stuck in front of the central fortress from their side as well.

After that, the rest would depend on the movement of the four hundred enemies maneuvering from the north side….

 

 

 

General Rancias sensed the change in the eastern fortress after they left.

“Stop!”

He deliberately called out, bringing his troops to a halt.

 

“Convey the pulse of life and existence unto me, <Probe>.”

General Rancias, who wields wind-attribute magic, did not hesitate to use probe to investigate the eastern fortress.

The result….

 

“No way, the four hundred people left behind have been wiped out…”

His mutterings reached the ears of his men next to him in the silent forest.

 

“How…?”

“No idea…but I’m getting a reaction of fifty elves approaching at a slight distance…I’m sure they have something to do with it.”

Rancias answered his subordinate’s question.

 

“A separate unit?”

“Perhaps…the elves from the royal capital…”

After saying this, Rancias swore quietly but bitterly.

“That incompetent Linus!”

 

The fact that the elves from the royal capital appeared in the western forest at this time meant that the royal capital invasion team had failed to capture the Autonomous Region.

If so, then it is the responsibility of the chief adjutant, Linus, who is at the heart of the operation…General Rancias concluded.

 

Then again, someone who knew the whole story might have said, “This is a misunderstanding”, and that it was due to the tremendous deduction of the now deceased crown prince Cain…but good luck with that.

Pitiful Linus.

 

 

“What’s the plan, General?”

“We will flank the fort as planned. If we don’t free the vanguard trapped in the center, we won’t stand a chance!”

“Roger!”

 

There was only one other card to play that could turn the situation around…. but even General Rancias didn’t know when it’ll be available.

And since he did not know, he couldn’t rely on it in that dire situation.

 

 

Either the vanguard captured in the center gets crushed first, or the vanguard will be freed by the flanking attack on the fortress…or perhaps the enemy runs out of magic power.

 

 

As the Rancias forces approached the central fortress, the elven forces holed up in the fortress took notice.

Of course, this was part of General Rancias’ plan.

He needed to divide the attention of the elves, who were concentrating on restraining and attacking the vanguard, as much as possible, to buy some time for the vanguard from being wiped out.

 

This was a tricky situation for Obaba-sama and the other elves holed up in the fortress.

The approaching troops numbered four hundred.

That alone was more than the number of elves holed up in the fort….

 

“I guess the trap at the eastern fortress wasn’t enough to wipe them out…”

Those who were good at probe-type magic, including Obaba-sama, had sensed that the trap at eastern fortress had been activated.

And that it had gotten quite a few of them.

In which case, it could be assumed that those from the Autonomous Region who had retreated from the royal capital had reached the vicinity of the eastern fortress.

The plan was to have all of the ones who had remained in the eastern fortress annihilated, but no plans are flawless….

 

 

“Archers, the first through third squads will continue to attack the enemy in front. The fourth and fifth squads, do not let the new enemies seize the fortress.”

 

Obaba-sama sharply gave the instructions.

However, her heart was filled with bitterness.

 

They’re currently holding them down with downburst, but their magic power is certainly not without limit

Even in the environment of the western forest, where the elves can fully demonstrate their abilities, each of them was nearing the limit of their remaining magic power.

That being the case, they needed to defeat the enemies in front of them, who were cowering in a defensive position and buying time, as soon as possible….

The decision to divide their forces…honestly, she wasn’t sure if it was the right one.

 

 

But she showed no hesitation.

The commander’s hesitation can tilt the tide of the battle altogether.

 

Right now, she was forcing herself to assume the attitude, ‘I am right. So y’all can follow my instructions without hesitation’.

Obaba-sama’s anguish was deep….

 

 

“Good. The enemy has divided their forces this way as well.”

General Rancias grinned.

 

This would extend the time it would have taken the vanguard to be wiped out.

 

But…

“General, we have an enemy detachment to our rear!”

“Goddamn it, looks like the Autonomous Region lot are coming after us.”

 

The fifty elves who had evacuated from the Autonomous Region in the royal capital, responsible for triggering the trap at the eastern fortress, did not head toward the central fortress, but instead closed in behind the four hundred men of the flanking assault force led by General Rancias.

 

“They should have headed for the center… Although they won’t be able to fight at close quarters there, not with that wind blowing…. They can only attack with bows and arrows…but this lot is from the Autonomous Region, and they got here after evacuating from the royal capital, wouldn’t it stand to reason that they don’t have as many arrows with them, considering? If so, they will definitely choose close-quarters combat.”

Gathering his thoughts in a low voice, General Rancias gave his orders.

 

“Abort the attack on the fortress. All units will engage the Autonomous Region forces approaching from the rear. They will be coming in hot and engage in close-quarters combat. We will resume the attack on the fortress after wiping them out.”

 

 

Thus, on the north side of the central fortress, the battle between the four hundred men of the Imperial ‘Shadow Army’ flanking assault force led by General Rancias and the fifty elves led by Carson, the chief of the autonomous authority, was to begin.

 

 

“As expected of the ones who forced Obaba-sama to abandon the east and retreat to the central fortress. Are these imperial troops really human!”

Chief Carson muttered involuntarily.

 

 

Elves are people of the forest.

The forest is their home ground.

It was the first time they had a hard time in a battle in the forest.

 

 

“Do not see your opponents as humans! Think of them as having fighting skills on par with elves. Surround them and defeat them.”

It was a heated close combat battle, and both sides were fighting at a very high speed.

Bow, which is the elves’ strongest weapon, cannot be used.

And no opportunity to use wind magic as well.

 

In other words, it was a pure close-quarters combat with swords… but it did not necessarily mean that the elves had the advantage.

 

That said, the Imperial ‘Shadow Army’ did not have an overwhelming advantage either.

 

“Dammit, they are stronger than those lot holed up in the forest.”

General Rancias himself was in the middle of a sword battle.

 

Although he holds the position of ‘general’, he is still the strongest in the ‘shadow army’ when it comes to sword fighting in close quarters.

 

Even from Rancias’ point of view, the enemy reinforcements were a troublesome opponent.

And somehow, he felt that they were well versed in anti-personnel combat.

 

 

Up until now, the Elves had indeed been troublesome and strong opponents, and certainly lived up to their reputation as forest tribes, but they were by no means experienced in melee combat.

However, he got the impression that these newcomers from the royal capital were quite accustomed to melee combat.

No doubt, they had trained specifically for this.

He would even dare to say that they had been battling with first-rate knights.

 

(Did they perhaps receive training in the royal capital from a knight instructor or something?)

That’s right.

 

 

General Rancias thought that the situation was more severe than expected, but an even graver development that would overshadow it occurred.

 

The location was the central fort.

 

“Obaba-sama!”

Hearing her subordinate’s cry, Obaba-sama turned around.

There, she saw the elves collapsing….

 

“They’ve run out of magic power…”

 

At last, what she had feared happened.

They must have pushed themselves to the very limit…the elves who had been casting Downburst and possessed superior magic power started collapsing one after another, and the archers initially responsible for shooting were taking their place to maintain the magic.

 

However, that was only a measure to cover up the complete collapse of the situation.

 

Compared to those who were dedicated to magic, they possessed less magic power, and above all, there were almost no archers left.

Even if they stopped their movement, they won’t be able to reduce the number of opponents if there are fewer shooters to finish them off.

 

As if to further aggravate the situation, flare magic appeared in the eastern sky.

 

“Three yellow, one green.”

“They’re here!”

General Rancias’ expression finally loosened up after listening to the report from his subordinate.

 

Their long-awaited reinforcements.

The final rearguard of the imperial ‘Shadow Army’ numbering one thousand.

 

The detachment that was sent to assist in the capture of the royal capital, the very last remnants of the ‘shadows’.

The long awaited….

 

 

“This is the end, you abominable Elves.”

Rancias laughed ominously as he said that.

 

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6 Comments

  1. Vegeta.D.kaiba

    Great chapter

  2. R2D2TS

    Thanks for the chapter.

  3. Kry

    I would like to mention that chapter 2 of water magician takes you back to the welcome page.

    I don’t know where to write this on but thought that it will be easier to notice if it is in the latest chapter, sorry if I’m wrong to post this here.

  4. kel~

    Rancias : “This is the end, you abominable Elves.”

    Also Rancias: Wait, why do I hear a boss music.

  5. doowii

    We about to see Sera in action !!!

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