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Volume 3: Chapter 161 – The Battle of Piana Hill II (1/2)
Gi Gu’s sword and axe came swinging for Gowen Ranid, but he easily parried the sword and dodged the axe.
Jumping lightly, Gowen Ranid took a step forward and thrust his sword.
Fortunately, Gi Gu somehow managed to dodge it, but unfortunately, he could only watch as the sword passed him and could not create an opening to counterattack. The most he could do was to back off.
Refusing to be overwhelmed by fear, Gi Gu attacked once more, but Gowen just easily parried his attacks.
A fierce duel began to unfold in the middle line, where the goblins were pushing back the humans. No, that wasn’t quite right. Actually, it was just Gi Gu who was fighting fiercely, Gowen didn’t seem particularly affected by Gi Gu’s attempts to kill him.
Gowen was just calmly dodging and parrying Gi Gu’s attacks. He neither pushed himself nor tried to take risks, he was purely fighting defensively.
The reason Gowen was fighting like that was because of the circumstances at hand.
The way Gowen saw it, all they needed to win was to hold the middle line. The other lines may have been pushed by the goblins at the start, but right now, they were currently at a deadlock, and the supply platoon would soon be able to annihilate the beast horde. Moreover, the chariots and the cavalry were almost done surrounding the goblins.
The magic platoon and archers were also waiting in standby at the summit of the hill for the retreating goblins.
So long as Gowen was able to keep the goblin duke in check, the goblins would eventually exhaust themselves and die.
Which is also why Gi Gu was currently panicking.
The cavalry was repeatedly charging toward the goblins. Gi Gu wanted to do something about them, but the human knight before him wouldn’t let him. He knew it the moment he’d turned his back and felt that terrifying pressure.
The goblins fighting at the center were starting to lose their momentum because of Gi Gu being pinned, so it was only natural that the other fronts would be doing even worse.
Gi Gu wanted to give out orders and break the deadlock of the other fronts, but this holy knight wouldn’t even let him do that. Every time he tried to speak, his sword would come swigging, forcing him to swallow his words.
Gi Gu’s patience was growing thin, but he endured nevertheless.
The only reason his horde hadn’t fallen yet was because he was still fighting and because they knew the king was just behind them.
“The king’s army will come soon! Don’t let him see us fighting pathetically!” The platoon commanders of the goblins, the rare classes, encouraged the normal goblins.
At their words, the normal goblins mustered what was left of their strength and fought valiantly.
Gi Gu knew his men were almost at the last of their breath. Because of that he became even more panicked.
If he could just defeat the holy knight here, they would be able to turn things around.
Impatience filled Gi Gu as he clearly felt the weight of the responsibility he bore, but he did not let any of those feelings show on his face as he swung his sword again.
After the Goblin King interrogated the humans Gi Gu had caught, he immediately ordered his army to follow after Gi Gu’s. The harpyurea were scouting ahead for them, so they could move at ease without worrying over ambushes. That being said the information they got was worrying.
The human army numbered 1700 men strong.
If that number was no exaggeration, Gi Gu would surely lose if he were to clash against them directly.
Even if he doesn’t, it would only be a matter of time. The Goblin King did not want to lose him here.
“We must make it. We’re moving at the speed of thunderclap! Those who can’t keep up, just catch up later!”
That was the order to move at the fastest pace possible. At that, the Goblin King, the Riders of Paradua, the centaurs, and the fang tribe all ran at the lead.
“Gi Ga, watch the back!” The Goblin King said before running at full speed.
The red bear’s mantle the goblin king wore fluttered in the wind, but he didn’t have the time to care about it, for as soon as he noticed a harpy flying back, he ran even faster to reach her.
“Keep up with the king! March!” Gi Jii Yubu said, causing the spear-wielding goblins to move faster.
“We shall reclaim our plains!” Chief of the fangs, Mido, said.
As they ran toward the wave-like hills, they received information from harpy about the position of their enemies and allies.
“Paradua, centaurs, fangs! You are to rescue Gi Gu!”
As the horde under the Goblin King ran, he gave orders to drive away the enemy cavalry and charge into the enemy.
The Goblin King rendezvoused with Gi Jii and Gi Za after they’d caught up, then he took them and attacked the summit of a hill were the archers were.
“Onwards!” The Goblin King drew zweihander and commanded his army to move toward the hill.
“G-Goblins! A new horde is attacking from the west!” A messenger said.
Gowen listened to that report as he fought Gi Gu.
“We were almost done too,” Gowen clicked his tongue.
He had to give out new orders, so he parried the attacks of the goblin he was fighting.
He was planning to completely wipe out this goblin horde, so only the magic platoon and the archer platoon were positioned at the back.
Neither platoon could handle close-combat. If they were to fall, there was a chance of Gowen finding himself in the middle of a pincer attack. At which point, they would then be unable to keep their allies from collapsing in one fell swoop.
To avoid that, Gowen needed to have one platoon break off and focus on defense. If not that, then he would have to change the position of the platoons.
If he were to order one platoon to break off, he would end up spending more time on the enemy before him.
Gowen thought such a plan to be inane and decided against it. There was no choice. They would have to change course.
Gowen brought up the map of the surrounding area inside his head and searched for the best place to fight.
The east was being blocked by the duke-class goblin, while the new goblin horde was coming from the west. That being the case, he would have to make do with either the south or the north.
The north led to the snow god mountains and was abundant with forests. Such terrain did not suit big armies. To the south was the Piena Plains Road, which connected the south and the west.
“Should we move to the south then?” Gowen muttered to himself.
“Is planning something you do in the middle of a duel!?” Gi Gu yelled as he swung his long sword, but Gowen just flicked his attack away.
Gi Gu was shocked to see Gowen finally respond, but his puzzlement did not last long, for he stepped in further and swung his axe.
“Die!” Gi Gu said.
“Naive fool!” Gowen said back as he slipped past Gi Gu’s axe and aimed for Gi Gu’s feet.
Because Gowen was too close, Gi Gu could not run, and he could only watch as both of his legs were wounded. Gi Gu fell to his knees.
Gowen would have ended him there, but a howl from the west stopped the holy knight in his tracks.
It was an overwhelming howl that seemed to devour even the very heavens and earth themselves. Gowen’s face grimaced as he recognized that voice.
The image of a giant black goblin, a devil who could control the flames of hell, flashed through his mind.
Gowen no longer had the leisure to bother with the goblin before him.
If the Goblin King was the one chasing him from behind, he had to move now. Even a moment later would be too dangerous.
“Tell the cavalry and the chariots to stir up the goblins! As for the infantry, have them turn around in order!” Gowen turned his back on Gi Gu and gave orders to the messenger. “The archers are to suppress the enemy while the mages change course for the south.”
“You bastard!” Gi Gu yelled as he tried to force himself forward, but Gowen just kicked him with his iron shoes, then took his army and moved south.
Although the goblin forces were partially destroyed, it should still have been a difficult task to retreat, but Gowen was not an ordinary leader.
The suppressive fire of the archers destroyed whatever momentum Gi Gu’s forces had left, allowing Gowen to retreat his army from all fronts.
When the humans that have been defending all this time suddenly attacked, the goblins panicked. The humans used that opening to make a run for it.
The human army moved with the left wing first, then the right, and then the middle. The chariots and the cavalry were the last to go, but they made sure to stir up the goblins before leaving.
The goblins wanted to pursue, but the cavalry and their spears kept them from doing so.
When the new goblin horde appeared, the magic platoon shot the magic they’ve been keeping all this time, then they quickly ran away with the supply platoon.
That splendid retreat left the Goblin King and Gi Jii with no room to pursue.