“Archers, form up behind the fences! Magicians, get ready!”
About a thousand archers are scattered around the camp. Wooden tower shields are placed in front of them in case the archers want to duck into cover from enemy’s arrows. Fire and wind magicians are gathered near the tower. General Gerard and company including Erwin are observing from the tower.
“Earth magicians, deepen and widen the ditch! Water magicians, fill it up when it is ready!”
It is much easier to deal with the enemy when they are slowed down by the water. This is similar to having a river as natural barrier. A good defensive position will take note of the terrain. Right now we are on an open plain so they are no natural barrier available.
“Have the cavalries go out from the back wall. Tell them to wait for command. Do not engage at any cost!” (Gerard)
“Also, have a wind magician follow them. We will send the command with a magic. We must not let the battle drown out our voice nor letting our enemy to prepare for it. Have a wind magician up here too. This way, they can hide farther.” (Kojiro)
“Do it!” (Gerard)
“I hope our plan will allow us to hold on until our reinforcement arrive.” (Erwin)
“That’s right. This is quite a gamble.” (Kojiro)
Hmm... I wonder where the five Earth’s soldiers who followed me are. The map shows that they are pretty far away from here.
“They are setting up their formation. It looks like they are trying to surround us.” (Gerard)
“Will they advance inland after leaving some troops to hold us here?” (Erwin)
“That will be a foolish move unless their number are really overwhelming. I believe they are not that stupid to do that when they only have this many troops. If they did that, at that time, we will march out and destroy the surrounding armies and then attack them from behind. Our troops inland are still numerous.” (Gerard)
“I see. Then, we just need to hold up.” (Erwin)
The three kingdoms’ armies are surrounding our fortified position from all sides. The troops at our back to the north are a bit weaker than the other three sides. If our reinforcement comes, that side will be the one that will get devastated first. They are composed of only militia so I think they are only serve as early warning for the three kingdoms.
Our cavalries have gone a long distance away from the battlefield. They are not suitable for defensive battle so we will use them for raiding. The enemy should have taken a countermeasure for them so the effect will be limited for now. We have to wait or create the opportunity to use them.
“Hmm... This plan is much better than our original plan. Youngster, where do you learn all of this?” (Gerard)
“From games.” (Erwin)
“Games? What kind of games are they that will teach strategies and tactics?” (Kojiro)
“You guys won’t be able to imagine it.” (Erwin)
“Huh... Whatever. We need to survive this first before doing anything else.” (Kojiro)
“Hmm... They are starting. This tower is really useful. Get ready!” (Gerard)
From afar, the first wave of thousands of troops starts to march. This time, they are marching in order unlike the charge from this morning. Only the militia group’s formation from our back are a bit messy. It looks like they don’t deploy any good leader for them and already expecting them to be destroyed.
As we don’t have any really long range weaponry such as catapults, trebuchets, or even ballistas, we can only wait for them to come into the range of magic. The earth magicians and wind magicians are readying themselves. We will have to make due with makeshift catapult made of magicians... Sounds strange if it is said like that. Whatever.
The enemy has arrived inside two hundreds meters from us. The march of orderly troops are intimidating especially when our number is much smaller. The magicians are waiting anxiously for General Gerard.
The earth magicians start to cast their magic. In the middle of the enemy’s formation, countless big rocks and harden soils float up to the top of them. Some soldiers that is unfortunate to be standing on top of those things are losing their balance and fall down.
A moment later, the rocks and soils are being compressed to be smaller. The pressured rocks and soils are shaking. The enemy is standing dumbfounded. Their leaders order them to march forward. Moments later, the pressure is released and the rocks and soils explode. Countless bits of hard rocks and soils rain down on the surrounding troops.
Cries of pain sound out from within the formation. The formation momentarily crumbles but soon, by their leaders’ order, the formation reassembled and once again begin marching. The injured soldiers are being brought back. Their number is dropping fast.
“Hmm... This is quite a good tactic.” (Gerard)
“In war, killing our enemies might not be better than injuring them. When they are killed, their number drops and that’s it. On the other hand, if we injure them, the enemy will want to bring their friends back to their camp causing their number to drop even further.” (Erwin)
“Their morale will drop even more quickly if their leaders ignore the injured soldiers and keep marching without bringing them back. Their soldiers will fear being injured in that case and will slow down the march. Not bad, not bad.” (Gerard)
“Yeah, right. There is also that reasoning. I never think about it. Experience is important.” (Erwin)
“Ho? Do you not think that way?” (Kojiro)
“A game is a game. We don’t know how the actual battle will be because it is just a simulation. Having experience on the field will bring difference.” (Erwin)
Also, I can’t have the soldiers of those armies and ours to drop too much. It will be harder to resist the demon’s invasion later on. I just hope the invasion won’t be like what Felicia described. It was too frightening.
“I see. That’s right. Experience is important.” (Kojiro)
“They are inside the range. Wind magicians!” (Gerard)
The enemy is now within the one hundred and fifty meters range. This time, the wind magicians cast their magic. Strong winds start to blow towards the enemy. At the same time, countless small wind blades are attacking the enemy. The enemy on all four sides suffered small injuries all over their body that isn’t covered by armor. However, the march still continues with slightly slower pace.
At this moment, the commanders of the three kingdoms’ armies order the second wave of attack to support the first wave. Second wave of another thousands of troops march towards us. Seeing this, Yamato army’s high morale from previous battle is dropping at steady pace in front of organized attack of the enemy.
Morale is an important factor in wars. Troops with higher morale will perform better than those with lower morale. It is similar to how an ordinary people with high self confidence will perform better than a genius with low self confidence. There are ways to raise self confidence and that is similar to how to raise morale.
Strategies and tactics are two of the ways to raise morale. With good tactics, a battle will be fought more easily. Using terrains as natural barriers, obstructions, and traps; using correct formation to handle the enemy; and using surprise attacks and ambushes are a few tactics that can be employed to raise one’s own morale and reduce enemy’s morale.
With good strategies, a war will be favorable to one’s own side and have a high morale all through the battles fought in the war. Calculating where to hold a battle, luring enemy to favorable position for one’s own side, separating armies from one another, causing unrest from within the enemy are a few strategies that can be used.
Right now, the enemy is using their superiority in numbers to lower our morale by utilizing human waves tactic. Seeing endless troops marching towards us will eventually raise fear among our troops. Although we have a fortified position, it is only a really simple one. We don’t have time to build the complicated fortification.
“Roy, you handle the earth magicians the same way as I did before. Kelly, you handle the wind magicians. Remember, use the same method as before. I will handle the others.” (Gerard)
“ “ Yes, General! ” ”
“This will be more difficult than planned.” (Kojiro)
“Plan will always look nice because we imagine it using our desired condition. It rarely work the way we want unless we have numerous experiences in it.” (Gerard)
“They have sent out ten thousands of their troops in this two waves of attack. Isn’t it a bit too excessive to send more than half their numbers in merely two attacks?” (Erwin)
“Hahaha. How do you want to do it then?” (Gerard)
“I will divide it into four groups. Two groups will consist of half of the entire armies, one will consist of three fourth of the last half of armies and the rest will be the one guarding the main camp. The third group will commence the decisive attack.” (Erwin)
“Well, I don’t see any difference between yours and theirs but won’t your main camp be the most vulnerable to your enemy surprise attack?” (Gerard)
“Hmm... Right. I can’t have the main camp fall like that. I will have to rethink about it.” (Erwin)
“It is fine. Remember, there will always be aides for every commanders. They will help polish the plan.” (Kojiro)
“Alright. They are nearly within our archers’ range. Archers!” (Gerard)
All archers of Yamato start to nock their arrows. There are two hundreds archers facing the front, left and right. There are four hundreds archers facing the back. It is planned that we will rout the army at our back first since they are the weakest group right now. This will allow us to use our cavalries later on.
A few moment after they passed through the line, the arrows are let loosed. The mere amount of arrows when compared to the number of enemy is too pitiful but we don’t have anymore archers. Hundreds of arrows strike their respective sides. A few moments later, another volley of arrows strikes again.
The earth magicians also start to attack the second wave of troops. The archers keep letting loose volley after volley of arrows. Thousands of enemy’s troops are now injured. Hundreds of them died but they keep marching towards us.
They have now reach the moat outside the small fences. Their archers have been given orders to fire at our archers. Our archers occasionally duck down behind the tower shields and let loose arrows. There is no longer any volley attacks.
The enemy tries to cross over the moat. Their movement is slow because of the soaked armors. One by one, they fall to the arrows from our archers. Occasionally, some of them step into slightly deeper area in the moat and drown themselves. This caused the others to advance more carefully. However, due to the water is now dyed in red blood and mud, they can no longer see the bottom of the moat. More and more of them drown themselves. The moat is littered with corpses.
After a while, the advances on all sides stop. They are now entering the siege formation. Shields are used to defend themselves from the arrows. The second wave of troops has arrived and joined up with the first wave. From behind them, groups of troops are now advancing closer. They finally brought out their siege equipment.
After a while, they arrive with long narrow wooden planks. They are now dropping them on the moat, creating narrow bridges to cross over it. The next moment, cheers erupt from within their ranks and they start to cross the moat.
“Archers! Pull back to second line of defense! Spearmen! Defend the fences! Do not let them through!” (Gerard)
The archers quickly collect their arrows and pull back to halfway of the hill we are on. Spearmen push forward to the fences and are attacking any enemy that has crossed over the moat. Arrows from the enemy are now attacking the line of spearmen. Wind magicians are using strong wind to offset the arrows.
The archers have arrived at the second line of defense. They are now letting loose arrows to hinder the enemy’s archer from attacking. High ground and tailwind help their arrows reach longer range.
At this moment, I am watching the whole battlefield through the drone on top of us. This way, I can observe all of the battle on each side at once. Currently, we are holding fast. The enemy’s army at our back are declining fast due to us deploying more archers over there. Our hardest battle is at the front because they have larger number over there.
When I check the enemy at the back, I am shocked of what they are doing.
“Report! General Rosford has suffered heavy losses from a surprise attack from enemy cavalries.”
“What!? How is their situation?”
“We have confirmed that they lost a quarter of their troops and more than half are injured. They are now unable to provide reinforcement to the front line.”
“This.... Send out scouts! We must not meet the same fate as them or our front line will collapse!”
General Frost of the Third Army, the commander of two thousands of troops sent as reinforcement to the front line is now pondering on what to do. They are expected to meet this afternoon here but the other general has suffered heavy losses. The front line can only count on his two thousands troops of reinforcement instead of four thousands right now.
It is regrettable that they missed the magicians group that has passed through this area in the morning. Without knowing that there is already another group of reinforcement, General Frost are now thinking hard about this issue.
“We march now! No more delay!”
“ “ “ Yes General! ” ” ”
His army of two thousands marches towards the front line. Their pace is now much faster than before. They will arrive at the front line in the middle of the night later.
“We have almost arrived at the front line. We will rest here. Everyone! Take a break.”
The magicians group is now on the outer perimeter of the plain where the battle occurred. Due to using magic to cover a large distance, they are now exhausted. Even if they march into the battle right away, none of them can provide any significant help.
In the middle of the group is a group of girls and a boy. A girl is walking back and forth impatiently. She is Mary.
“Mary, sit down. It’s going to be okay. We are nearly there.” (Yuni)
“I don’t know why but I have a bad feeling about this. I feel like we have to go quickly. We are already behind schedule.” (Mary)
Mary with an anxious face sits down beside Yuni and Alishia. Frank is lying on the ground exhausted. While sitting, Mary is still restless. She can’t keep still at all.
“Hmm.... I think I will go ahead of you. I can’t wait here. I still can use many magic.” (Mary)
“No. Sit here.” (Yuni)
The moment Mary stands up, Yuni pulls her hand and sit her down again. This time, she wraps her hand around Mary’s shoulders and holds her down. Alishia jumps and embraces Mary while looking at her with worried eyes.
“Sit here for a while. We will go early then the rest but we need to be at our optimal condition. Frank, Alishia and I are exhausted.” (Yuni)
“Onee-chan... Don’t leave.” (Alishia)
“See. We will go with you. Just stay for a while. We are also worried about you on top of Erwin.” (Yuni)
“....Okay then. I will stay for a while.” (Mary)
“Good girl. Don’t worry. Erwin is strong. He has...” (Yuni)
“He has what?” (Mary)
“Nevermind. It isn’t important.” (Yuni)
What Yuni was thinking is about the case of where he defended her village. With that kind of weapons and his suits, he shouldn’t fall so easily. She believes he will still be alive even if they are a bit late. Right now, they need to rest and recover their energy as much as possible. Only then, they can help him on any problems.
“We will go in an hour. The magicians might need a longer time to recover the strength but we are different. We can go ahead of them.” (Yuni)
“Alright. I will listen to you.” (Mary)
“What a good little sister.” (Yuni)
Yuni pats Mary’s head. Mary has calmed down a bit. However, she is still restless. Only because Alishia, who is tired, is sleeping on her lap that it made her can’t move much.
An hour later, Mary and Yuni wakes Frank and Alishia up. Together, this small group marches ahead of the magicians group.