"Back to the issue at hands. Guido Imperial Army that left Daina numbered in 500. However, our spies reported that they saw a sizable number of beastmen going out into the forest the night before they marched out. Although this information arrived late at the capital."
"There were only 500 of them. They had no accompanying soldiers either. Even if there were 500 more hiding in the forest, it would merely be a force of 1000. They marched at a considerable pace during the day, but they would go hunting while the sun was still out and then grill and eat. They would take their time in the morning having meals before departing as well. Hence, they didn't cover that much distance in a day. We believed it would take them 12 to 14 days from Daina to the capital. Of course this information was relayed to Smarc and Tranche knights before it was sent to the capital."
Lecan was impressed by Guido Imperial Army's marching style. Taking your time eating meat in the night and having breakfast in the morning before starting your day is adventurers' ethos. That's the way a warrior can unleash their full power.
"What seemingly looked as their main army marched through Daina Highway, while a detached force proceeded through a forest in the west side. As this detached force didn't even try to hide and would grill meat out in the open, we didn't even have to look for them. Meanwhile, our spies kept getting killed one after another. They appear to have people with outstanding detection abilities."
After a discussion between the commanders of the two knight groups, Tranche Knights were to engage with this detached force. Smarc Knights and Wado adventurers were to annihilate the main army while Tranche Knights and Egis adventurers dealt with the detached force.
"It was a clash between 500 and 900. They had geographical advantage as well. Everyone believed it would be an easy victory."
"Main army marching on the highway, and a detached force in the forest to the left huh."
"What's the matter?"
"Did that detached force place themselves quite a fair bit away from the main force?"
"That is indeed correct. The distance was such that it should have taken them one whole day to cover. And that was a trap. But how did you come to believe that?"
"Nah, just hit on me. So what happened next?"
"Let's press on. On the fifth of month four, Smarc Knights and Wado adventurers clashed with the enemy's main force. Around here."
Manfrey pointed at the map. There's a mark drawn.
It was surprisingly close to Daina. They hadn't even covered a third of the way to the capital.
"Somewhere between Aspora town and Daina town, slightly closer to Daina."
Of course Lecan knew Aspora town. Cause it's got a dungeon. A fun sounding 80 floor dungeon. He always wanted to take a look in this dungeon whenever he'd get a chance to visit Daina.
"The first strike unleashed by our archers and mages should have dealt a devastating damage, yet those beastmen exhibited extraordinary defensive prowess. To both arrows and magic. The enemy didn't launch ranged assaults. Both forces clashed. Smarc Knights went all out, yet they failed to smash through the enemy despite numerical superiority. As they kept at it, another enemy unit suddenly showed up and broke through Smarc Knights' flank. The enemy main army also began their counteroffensive at this point. This other unit numbered in 500. A total of 1000 personnel. Smarc Knights were routed. Our army just utterly lost half of its number."
"Knew it. This detached unit must be some fast bunch."
"Indeed. A full day distance was ran through in just a fraction by those beastmen. Through a difficult forest terrain."
<TLN: Catch the latest updates and edits at Sousetsuka .com >
"What about our allied detached unit."
"Tranche Knights who lost sight of their target rushed to the east in order to join up with Smarc Knights. Ordinarily that decision would have been for the best, but there were no Smarc Knights left in their destination, only hostiles remained. Once they realized that from a report of their scouts who found that out by sight, Tranche Knights withdrew at once toward the royal capital. Yet, the enemy's detached force caught up to them in a flash despite the large distance between them. The fight was more akin to a swarm of strong beasts preying on a group of weak beasts rather than a battle between men. Tranche Knights suffered a dire blow inside the forest which hindered their coordination and group work. However, they managed to kill off the commander of this detached force, silver fox beastman, Ios."
"Hou. Tranche Knights got some strong guy too huh."
"Not the case. It was adventurer Eskis who felled Ios."
"Indeed. A <Descender> adventurer who had settled down in Egis."
"What? Didn't Egis's <Descender> go by something else."
"Ah you mean, Shivus the Rotund. That's the famous name, but it's actually more a nickname, his real name is Eskis. I just found out about it myself as well. Eskis lost his life during the fight that took down the enemy's commander. What's the matter."
Lecan's expression clouded a tad. Eskis was a common name in his previous world. The man might have originated from his world. He should have gone and met him earlier. Lecan completely forgot about <Descender> when he stopped by Egis after defeating Argent Flame Wolf back then.
"Nah, it's nothing."
"Eskis had retired in his old age, however, Marquis of Egis personally begged him to act as a facilitator for the adventurers. This talk prompted me to recall about you."
"Our kingdom had enjoyed a period of peace far too long we have forgotten how to fight. A war like this should have had an individual who take commands over the whole army. However, we have no such person. Even if we pushed for one, this person wouldn't be able to effectively command territorial lord knights, nor is there a guarantee those lord knights would follow them. Thus why we let each knight units freely choose how they approach the war, and this is the result. This is just a hunch of mine, but I believe these beastmen are exceedingly acclimated to wars."
"That's what it looks to me too."
"Hence, you. A powerful adventurer would make his entrance in the battlefield and defeat the enemy's commander. That is our sole option. I sent a messenger to fetch you right after that idea hit me. Then you came back on your own."
"I see now. By the way, I've got some questions."