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Volume 4: Chapter 281 – The Battle of Bandigam (3/3)
Rashka wreaked havoc from behind, while Gu Big’s long spears advanced like they were mad.
The numbers of the volunteer soldiers dwindled as they were crushed, and in the blink of an eye, their lines collapsed.
Gulland, who could not move on his own because he had to lead the Margrave’s army, bitterly gave the order to retreat.
“Is that fine? The others are still fighting.”
When one of his comrades told him that, Gulland shook his head.
“No messengers have been coming here for awhile. That’s proof that the holy knights are also in chaos. We’ll just get caught up in the chaos too if we idle here.”
“We can fight again as long we’re alive, huh.”
The bitter look on Gulland’s face appeared to be contagious.
“I’ll take responsibility. We’re retreating!”
At Gulland’s behest, the margrave’s army began to retreat.
“But why? There’s still a chance to win!”
Cried out the commander of the third company, Eleanor, who served as a reserve force at the rear.
“No, this battle is already…”
Yuan grit his teeth in frustration and could only look down when Eleanor turned to him.
One moment the enemy was on the verge of destruction, but then in the next moment, they were the ones in danger. Where would the forces of Gaidga that crushed the Volunteer Soldiers attack next? The mere presence of that army that could freely move kept the humans in fear of a pincer attack.
And there was no one among the humans who could survive a pincer attack from the goblins.
“What can we do?” Eleanor’s voice quivered as she cried out while Yuan glared at the battlefield. “What can we do to save them?”
“The lives of every soldier from the 3rd company. Do you have the resolve to pay that price?”
“Damn it, this isn’t how things were supposed to turn out.”
Unable to make his next move, Gerald clicked his tongue.
The entire army would collapse if they continued to surround Felduk. A counterattack would turn the battle into a war of attrition. And a retreat would wipe them out.
None of the choices available led to a desirable future, so he couldn’t make a decision.
But the clock was ticking, and soon the situation would reach the crossroads that Gi Gu and Gi Za have drawn, opening the path to the conclusion they so desired.
“The margrave’s army is retreating!”
When the messenger reported that as though he was screaming, Gerald glared unhappily at the margrave’s army.
But curse as he might, the fact that he had failed to make a decision showed that he was nothing more than a second-rate commander himself.
“A messenger from Eleanor’s company!”
“What is it this time!?”
“They will lure the enemy, so they want us to retreat during that time.”
“They’re going to cover for us!?”
Gerald groaned a bit when he realized Eleanor’s decision, but he gave the order nonetheless.
“…Retreat. May the protection of god be with Eleanor.”
As a commander, he had to prevent his forces from incurring any further damage. Since the margrave’s army has already retreated, it was already impossible for their lines to be restored to their original state. Above all, he didn’t want to die.
As the first company retreated, the third company advanced.
The first company retreated while providing cover fire with their spells, and when they finally reached a certain distance, they turned around and ran away.
Word of the first company’s retreat reached Judith the Zealot, who was currently in the process of skewering the goblins in the front lines.
“Eleanor’s forces have advanced!”
“And Gerald agreed!? That traitor!”
As Judith cursed Gerald, she skewered another goblin.
“Cover for Eleanor while we retreat. Those who desire the favor of god should not leave their allies to die!”
Judith’s soldiers cheered once again as they began to gradually retreat.
The Iron Bull Knights and the Volunteer Soldiers in the left flank have also started to retreat. Even if they stayed there was no chance of winning anymore. All that was left was how much damage they could mitigate and how to leave the battlefield.
The chain of command was already broken, so it was now completely up to each individual commander to make their own decisions.
As Eleanor’ and Judith’s forces stuck out to defend against Felduk’s attacks, the remaining forces retreated.
When Gi Gu Verbena saw that, he gave the order to surround the enemy.
“To sacrifice themselves for the sake of their allies… What valiant troops. Crush them.”
After dealing with the attacks from their flanks, Gu Big and Gu Tough attacked Eleanor and Judith’s forces.
“We cannot hold!”
Even Yuan, who stood at the head of Eleanor’s company, could hear screams and throes of despair.
“Advance. Line up your shields and block the attacks from the flanks! Advance!”
But Yuan had no intention of changing their orders. After coming this far, even retreat would lead to despair.
Their one ray of hope was that the enemy might retreat out of fear of incurring any more damage.
“…Are they still not here?”
As he blocked a goblin swordsman’s attack, he lopped its head off with his sword. As the fatigue accumulated overtime, his body grew heavy and it became more difficult to remain alert.
“Vice-commander! Look! The skies!”
Yuan, who had just finished blocking a goblin’s attack, endured the urge to cheer as he continued to resist against the goblins.
When they saw that the wyvern knights had arrived, Gi Gu Verbena and Gi Za Zakuend immediately retreated.
“What a pity…”
“Only the Goblin King can face off against the wyverns.”
Rashka glared at the enemy with regret while Gi Za continued with the retreat. Gi Gu Verbena had also requested the retreat, so they were able to retreat even before the Wyvern Knights could join the fray.
Eleanor and Judith’s companies suffered heavy casualties, but they managed to survive and return to Bandigam.
Rashka and Gaidga’s second military victory brought them much fame among their people and greater infamy among the humans.
As for Gi Za Zakuend, though Pale did not express it, she was satisfied with his performance and believed that he could take over the duty of the tactician while she attended to her duties as a prime minister.
With the second batch of holy knights defeated, Fort Bandigam only had the standing army of the Sacred Empire of Altigand left to serve as their main force.
As a result, they could not leave their fortress and could not afford fight the goblins again.
To keep the goblins from passing through Fort Bandigam while they waited for reinforcements from the imperial capital of Altigand, they decided to hole up inside Fort Bandigam.