Duke Talister was an old man with an amazing physique.
At the moment, he looked discontent.
“His majesty has already informed me to entrust command here to you.”
Huh? I haven’t heard anything about that. Like, since when did I become something like a general?
“Kuku, well, this makes things easier, doesn’t it? Your ways don’t really follow conventional strategies, you know. The less people in the way, the better, if you ask me.”
Raul said so and laughed.
I couldn’t imagine that such a thing was amusing for Duke Talister who has been guarding this place all this time.
“*(…hmp, what can a lad who isn’t familiar with the land do? That railway was certainly extraordinary, but warfare is a completely different matter.)*”
The duke might not have said anything, but his face said enough for me to certain that he furious within.
“Ahm…well, this capital of yours is the southernmost point, right? It’s safe to assume that this will be where the enemies will attack first, isn’t it?”
The duchy’s capital—which was a fortress city—was said to be the largest and most important fortress in the region.
“What do you mean?”
“You are correct that this is the southernmost point in the duchy. However, there are 3 points of interest for our enemies. This is one of those 3. It should go without saying that the other two are formidable fortresses as well. However, should either fall, defending the kingdom will all of a sudden become hellish.”
In other words, we must spare some troops to those other fortresses.
As to be expected when fighting with a numerically inferior army, how we divide our limited war potential was crucial.
“…hmm, yeah, I can see how it’s troublesome when fighting normally.”
“Duke Talister…I hope it’s alright if I change the landscape here a little bit.”
◇ ◇ ◇
The army of the Barste kingdom concentrated most of its war potential onto its main force.
Of its more than 50,000 soldiers, a total of only about 20,000 soldiers were dedicated to the detached forces which were sent to the two fortresses to the sides.
“The enemy still hasn’t finished their preparations! Don’t give them the chance and take down their fortress right now!”
The man who was given command of the entire invading force was known to be the Barste kingdom’s greatest general.
He has come from a family that has played a significant role in their kingdom’s conquest of the smaller nations that neighbored theirs. As for the person himself, he has distinguishing himself in the battlefield ever since his first campaign at the age of 12.
It should go without saying that failure was not an option. That said, the first thing in their way was Duke Talister who has defended the southern side of the neighboring kingdom time and time again.
The neighboring kingdom was still in turmoil due to the internal fighting that has been plaguing their land for a long time, but even then, they could still gather a respectable army for reinforcement if given enough time.
And so, in order to avoid a prolonged fight, the general decided that they would deploy most of their troops to assault the nearest and more accessible fortress: the fortress city that doubled as the duchy’s capital.
Also, in the general’s mind, because the fortress city was the most formidable one out of the three fortresses, the enemies wouldn’t expect that they would be going for it from the start instead of taking down either of the side fortresses first.
Before they proceeded though, the general heard the report of the spy that managed to sneak into the enemy kingdom beforehand.
“As predicted, our enemies have stationed a great number of their troops to the two other fortresses. It seems that the army controlled by the royal army has already arrived, but the same can’t be said about the reinforcements from the other nobles.”
The general nodded as though he was satisfied by the report he heard.
Obviously, even with a large army, taking down a formidable fortress city with impressive walls was no easy task. However, the general was highly confident that they would come out triumphant.
At least, until—
The ground made such loud, rumbling noises.
The general looked for where those noises could possibly be coming from. Upon realizing what was happening, he was instantly at a loss for words.
Gigantic walls were fiercely rising from the ground.
Moreover, those walls stretched over the horizon. In effect, this completely blocked the path for their armies to advance.