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Volume 3: Chapter 158 – Confrontation (1/2)
Inside the colonial city that watched over the mountains of the snow god was a fuming Gulland.
“Burn those barbarians!” Gulland yelled.
Not only did Gowen request for reinforcements to defend the west, the yugushiva barbarians that should have already been chased away suddenly started moving again.
Moreover, this time they weren’t challenging them to a straight-up battle and were instead attacking their patrols and merchants with small groups.
The defense of the northern colonial city was solid, and even if 1,000 or 2,000 yugushiva barbarians attacked, so long as Gulland was healthy, he would be able to deal with them.
But Gulland was only one person.
No matter how powerful he was, even he would be forced to sacrifice one side when two places are attacked at the same time.
Gulland was furious. They were incurring more and more casualties by the moment, but even if he tried and led a small platoon to chase after the barbarians, they would only turn around and run, almost as if they were mocking him.
Honestly, Gulland would rather not send reinforcements to the west now, but he owed Gowen.
“If their fighting style has changed, then that must mean they’ve started to learn,” Gulland’s adjutant said, but upon seeing him angry, even he couldn’t help but cower out of fear that he might only add oil to the flames.
In the end, it was the holy knight, Lili, who gave a calm analysis of the battle.
“…What an annoying bunch. Did they change leaders or something?” Gulland asked in the office to no one in particular.
The people gathered in the office were the leaders of the army. They knew that Gulland had only said that out loud to help himself gather his thoughts, so no one answered.
Gulland’s eyes were closed as he became thoughtful, then all of the sudden, ‘KA’! Gulland slammed his hand on the table.
“We’re sending reinforcements to the west. 500 men. I will lead them. As for the defense here… Lili, I’ll leave it to you,” Gulland said.
When the gathered people heard how big of a force Gulland was planning to take, they couldn’t help but open their eyes wide in astonishment.
“…General, if you send that many, what about our—” Gulland’s adjutant tried to argue, but when he saw Gulland click his tongue, he folded.
“That will be all. Lili, I leave it to you,” Gulland said, turning heel as he left the room.
After that, silence filled the office.
“…Lord Lili, do you have a plan?” The adjutant asked to continue the meeting.
Lili nodded. “I do, but it will take patience and endurance to execute it. Is there anyone in this fortress who can do that?”
Lili looked over the gathered generals and sighed.
The soldiers gathered in the north were mostly ruffians, and Gulland had taken most of them with him to the west.
“…I see. So that’s how it is,” Lili said.
Lili pondered on Gulland’s true intentions. Gulland had taken the greater majority of the ruffian-like soldiers.
That being the case, the soldiers left behind were mostly docile. Gulland’s preferred soldier was the rough sort that neither cared about theirs nor other people’s life.
With most of those soldiers gone, Lili was free to move as she pleased. Apparently, Gulland had intended for her to deal with the relatively docile soldiers herself.
“Can’t tell if he’s just not honest, or if this whole thing is just a coincidence,” Lili chuckled.
“There’s no other way to it! Everyone, listen up!” Lili said in a loud voice.
As Lili put on the aura of a leader, the gathered generals saw her in a new light.
The main force that the Goblin King led moved in the night. They stationed some goblins in the occupied villages they came across and left Shumea and the elves to handle them.
The Goblin King and his forces would make camp in the small forests to rest during the day.
They would either eat the beasts they caught along the plains or the preserved food they’d brought with them. The food didn’t really fill their stomachs, but no one uttered a word of complaint.
After all, the Goblin King himself endured the simple diet, and the various goblin commanders would go around during break time to talk tot the soldiers.
On the third day, report of Gi Gu Verbena meeting the enemy finally came.
“Great Brother has made, contact with enemy. Loss, one normal class. We caught, the enemy,” the rare class goblin reported with some difficulty.
The Goblin King knit his brows. “How many enemies?”
“About 10. They have all, been caught,” the rare class goblin replied.
The Goblin King folded his arms and looked up to the sky as he became thoughtful, but that only lasted for a few seconds before he made his decision.
“I shall meet them,” the Goblin King said.
In response, the rare class goblin bowed and turned heel.
The duty of a messenger was to contact the king, and then return to Gi Gu Verbena’s ‘Wolf Pack’.
What the king was wondering about was whether the soldiers caught were actually a part of the official army or if they were merely adventurers.
If they were a part of the official army, their absence might alert the enemy.
If the enemy were to send a search squad to investigate, it would become difficult to execute the surprise attack.
On the other hand, if the captured ‘soldiers’ were merely adventurers, then there wasn’t much to worry about. It was doubtful that the guild or the army would bother to watch them too closely.
If there was anything to worry about it would be the number. 10 people. That was not a small number.
More people meant more connections. If those connections were to worry, they might end up alerting the enemy.
That being said, the Goblin King had no intentions of rebuking Gi Gu’s decision. If anything, the king believed that Gi Gu ought to be praised.
The army Gi Gu was leading numbered almost 500 goblins. Normally, a party of 10 people wouldn’t bother to attack an army of that size. They would normally try to run.
The fact that Gi Gu was able to capture them meant that he had either managed to hide his army well or that he made his move quick enough that they were unable to react. Whatever the reason, Gi Gu was undoubtedly a skilled commander.
“Your Majesty, it would take too long to interrogate the humans one by one,” Gi Za said unreservedly.
“I see where you’re coming from, but we need to ensure that there’s no falsehood to their words. The wrong information could very easily lead us to our deaths. This is enemy territory. We have to be careful,” the Goblin King said.
“In that case, we should send a messenger to ask Lord Gi Gu Verbena to slow down,” Gi Za suggested.
Gi Za feared that the enemy might be alerted to our presence while Gi Gu’s forces were too far from ours. A battle under such circumstances would be nothing short of disastrous.
Of course, the king had taken that into consideration already, so he explained his thoughts as well as the importance of information to Gi Za.
The current distance between Gi Gu’s wolf pack and the king’s main forces was about a whole day. As for whether that was close or far was something the inexperienced goblins did not know yet.
“Gi Gu should be able to handle the enemy even if they do meet. I don’t want to trouble him by giving him too many orders,” the Goblin King said.
“In that case, it can’t be helped…” Gi Za said.
Gi Za could not help but think less of himself as he felt how much the king trusted Gi Gu.
“Hmm… How about increasing our pace a little?” Gi Za suggested.
The Goblin King wryly smiled. “That would certainly allow us to maintain our distance, and we’ll be able to meet those captives quicker.”
Gi Za nodded, and then the king made his decision. “Very well! Send an order to the various units! We will be running at the speed of the wind!”
The Goblin King had thought up various ideas in regards to army movement.
One of those things was uniform movement. When the king said ‘Speed of the Wind’, that meant that the army needed to match the speed of the Paradua riders. It was a pace that prioritized speed; a pace at which, the normal goblins could barely catch up.
Of course, the Goblin King would have to slow down to watch the surroundings from time to time, but Gi Gu Verbena was leading the advance force for them, so there wasn’t much to worry about.
“Gi Ga,” the king called out.
“Yes, my liege,” Gi Ga replied.
Gi Ga Rax, the knight class goblin who rode on one of Paradua’s beasts, he was the king’s oldest and most loyal retainer.
“Have the imperial guards chase after the Paradua. Work with the raid groups of the centaurs and the werewolves to pick up the fallen,” the Goblin King said.
“As you command!” Gi Ga replied.
“Then have Gi Jii Yubu follow after the imperial guards, and then the Gaidga after Gi Jii.”
As the king gave his orders, the various commanders scattered.
“Trample upon the earth and tear through the winds, men! Onwards!”
At the king’s behest, the goblin coalition moved in the night like the gust of the wind.