Day 166 after being summoned to another world: (Outbreak of War 2)
“What? So you want us to advance to Irachion!?”
Meltina’s high pitch voice echoed throughout the meeting room.
The emergency meeting had begun since dawn.
“Why so suddenly? Didn’t you say that we should wait until the enemy to approach Pireaus to begin the decisive battle?”
Mikhail added his own question.
And such question is understandable.
In between the royal capital Pireaus and the Duke Gerhardt stronghold Irachion, there are two rough place known as Eleksha forest and Thaves river.
The Eleksha forest is a vast woodland area, with a single road cutting through the the forest.
There would be no problem for ordinary merchants or travelers to pass by. However, for an army this would be far too narrow to commute.
While it is not impossible for them to use this route, their formation would be narrowed, and not to mention that their speed would also decrease. Furthermore, the thick wooded area around them would be a perfect place for setting up an ambush.
After passing through Eleksha forest, the Thaves river will be visible.
This river is originated from mount Oul, which is located at the border of Zalda Kingdom. The river runs from northeast to Southwest of Rozeria Kingdom.
Thanks to this river, Rozeria Kingdom can live as an agricultural nation. However, from the perspective of moving soldiers, this river can only be seen as a hindrance.
The river itself has 500m width, meaning it would be impossible for them to build a bridge.
Additionally, the depth of water is quite deep, which would make it impossible for soldiers to walk across it.
Naturally, they would need a ship to cross the river.
On both sides of the river, there are several ferries that provides transportation services.
Although there’d be no problem for ordinary people to cross it, the story would be different when it comes to maneuvering a large army.
First of all, despite calling it a ship, it was not something that can be used to transport 100 people at once.
Even the largest ship there would be full with just 20 people.
Not to mention that a range of supplies need to be transported as well.
From spears and harness replacement.
To provision and horses.
As well as medicines for the injured.
And the list goes on and on.
Each and every one of those items are essential and must be carried over to the other side..
It is painfully obvious that this will take far too much time to complete.
The only way for the entire army to cross the river is to make round trips with a handful of soldiers at a time.
And that could be problematic.
Because something like that might become the cause of defeat.
Incidentally, in the past Rozeria Kingdom had waged war against Mist Kingdom through Irachion.
However, the situation right now is completely different.
At the time when they wage war against Mist Kingdom, the battleground was on the border between the two nations.
It was a situation where the safety of Irachion was guaranteed; thus there was no problem when they crossed over the river.
However, right now the enemy is Duke Gerhardt.
The east side of the Thaves river is completely under Duke Gerhardt’s control.
It is not a situation where they can cross over the river without any trouble.
That is why previously Ryouma had suggested performing the decisive battle by luring the enemy toward the royal capital Pireaus.
Draw the enemy toward their own territory and then cut off their supply line.
That was what Ryouma had planned.
And that was also the reason why all of the people who are present in the meeting raised their voice of surprises when Ryouma suggested a change of plan.
The only people who did not change their expressions are the Marfisto sisters.
“I see…, as expected of Ryouma, you have a clear understanding of the psychology of our enemy huh. ”
Though she was initially surprised with what Ryouma had suddenly suggested, she also understands what Ryouma is aiming for.
And that person is Elena.
“What does that mean?”
“It means, it would be easier for us to attack their territory now, Your Highness. ”
Ryouma answered Princess Lupis’ question, but she remained doubtful.
That is because he did not explain the reason why it would be easier for them to attack their enemies’ territory now.
Ryouma then proceeded to explaine to everyone who attended the meeting carefully.
“At first, I had suggested to lure the enemies to our territory because it was difficult for us to attack their territory. ”
Because both parties were worried about the possibility of getting attacked during the time they cross the river and forest, both Princess Lupis and Duke Gerhardt were waiting for their opponent to cross to their own territory…, however, there is no need to worry about those issues right now.
At least for the next 2 – 3 days.
As for the reason?
It is because General Hodram has joined Duke Gerhardt.
“I’ve never considered General Hodram joining forces with Duke Gerhardt as a problem. Rather, I thought of it as a mistake made by the enemy. ”
In the first place, this war was started because of their struggle for power.
Both the Duke and the General are prideful and arrogant beings.
And both of them are not the type who would compromise with their opponent.
“Now I ask you people, who do you think among those two will become the commander of their army when they ended up joining forces?”
Command structure is a vital part in war.
No matter how much troops you have, victory cannot be achieved without a systematic and efficient command structure.
This was evident in Earth’s history.
<TLN: An easy comparison would be German Nazi, their command structure is so inefficient that it surprises a lot of people after the war ends, one of the many reasons that lead to their defeat in war>
It might be easier if we compare it to a business company
For example, when a section chief and the director’s direction conflicted with each other, which one would you give priority?
The answer would be the director’s orders since the director is superior in rank.
Then how about when the president and the director order conflicted with each other?
You would give priority to the president, right?
Then what would happen if there are two presidents?
Both are your bosses.
What would happen if the two of them give out a conflicting order to you?
Everyone would end up confused.
That is because you wouldn’t be able to decide which order you should follow.
This applies to the current situation.
Hypothetically speaking, if Duke Gerhardt were to hand the authority of commanding his soldiers to General Holdram who has more experience in the military, or if General Holdram were to follow Duke Gerhardt’s orders since he has more soldiers, then this could spell a disaster for Ryouma.
But they are people with simple nature, narrow-minded mind, and overflowing arrogance.
Precisely because Ryouma understood that, he thinks now is the best time to attack.
“…I see, so that’s how it is…”
Listening to Ryouma’s explanation, the Princess’ face no longer has any doubtful expression.
The surrounding people seem to be able to understand what Ryouma had said as well.
“But this won’t last forever, no?”
Earl Bergston casted his doubt.
Indeed their opponents are arrogant and narrow-minded people.
However, they are among this nation’s best people.
They are not completely stupid.
“That’s why I said 2 – 3 days. ”
Because they had just joined forces, there would be a small opening.
The moment they finished their agreement, that opportunity would disappear.
“But Mikoshiba-dono… no matter how fast we dispatch our soldiers, it would take us around seven days to reach the Thaves River alone. Won’t that be too late then?”
Earl Zerev pointed out a logical question.
It would be pointless if they are unable to catch the opportunity they had aimed for.
But Ryouma is already aware of that and came up with the countermeasures.
“It would certainly be impossible if we were to move the whole army. However, as a small number, let’s say, 2000 cavalry unit and mercenaries should be able to make it. ”
The reason why Earl Zerev said it would take seven days is because he had also included the foot soldiers.
If we let the magic art users ride on horses and ignore the rest time by using recovery magic, we can cut a considerable amount of time.
And of course, because there are no foot soldiers, the marching speed would be faster.
“But…, let us assume that you’ve managed to cross over Thaves River with the 2000 troops, what are you going to do next? The enemy has more than 60.000 soldiers you know? Won’t 2000 soldiers end up useless?”
Meltina is worried regarding the time after he had crossed the river.
Certainly, 2000 cavalry would be able to reach the Thaves River within three days.
However, after he crossed the river, he will have to face the enemy’s soldiers immediately.
She could only see this as a suicidal action.
“I’ve already thought about that. Of course, it would be impossible to wage war against 60.000 men with only 2.000 men. But remember, it’d require around seven days for the whole army to arrive at the Thaves River if they are dispatched right after the cavalry marches, right? I think 2000 soldiers can hold on for a few days. ”
Everyone who heard Ryouma tilted their head.
Ryouma seems to be confident despite the enemy being 30 times stronger in numbers.
The people within the meeting room cannot agree on that so easily.
“You have some sort of plan?”
Ryouma nodded his head toward Princess Lupis’ question.
He does not believe that they can win if they were to fight head to head.
But at the same time, he also thought that they should not give up on this opportunity either.
If they miss this opportunity here, a cooperative relationship could be established between Duke Gerhardt and General Hodram.
Even if it sounds unreasonable, this is definitely a good time for them to attack.
Silence ruled over the meeting room.
All the gazes of the people within the meeting room are directed at Princess Lupis.
Because her decision will decide everything.
(Could he really achieve the impossible? No…, rather, will those 2000 soldiers be able to defend against 60.000 soldiers?)
Princess Lupis ponders about Ryouma’s suggestion.
She understands that her decision will determine the country’s future.
At last, it was Elena who broke the long silence.
“I think we should go along with his plan…, the situation won’t improve if we just stand idly like this either. And I also agree that this is a good time for us to make our move. ”
“Elena… I understand. I will leave 2000 soldiers under your command as an advance group. Defend yourselves until the main force arrives by all means!”
After listening to Elena’s advice, Princess Lupis finally made her decision.
“Understood. Please leave it to me. ”
Hearing those words, Ryouma lowered his head.
“Geez! You really have some nerve, boy…, to think you would tell us to cross the dangerous bridge deliberately. ”
Having said that, a smile appears on Lione’s face.
There was no malice in her words.
After Princess Lupis had decided the advance party, Ryouma, Lione and Bolts gathered in a room.
Although Mikhail and the Marfisto sisters are not with them right now, they also part of the advance party.
“Well, it’s better to attack them rather than getting attacked after all. ”
“Elena-sama also had said it, but indeed, this is a good time for us to attack.”
Listening to Ryouma’s words, Bolts responded to him in agreement.
For people who have a lot of experience like him, they would be able to follow Ryouma’s way of thinking.
“But still, young master, how are we going to defend against 60.000 soldiers with only 2.000 troops?”
Bolt asked modestly.
Although holding utmost respect towards Ryouma, Bolt has no intention of following anyone blindly.
It is normal for him to question the sanity of the idea behind fighting 60.000 soldiers with only 2.000 soldiers.
It is completely sensible for someone to want to know how to achieve all of that.
“Well, all of this will depends on Bolts-san and the other’s ability. I’ve requested several tasks to the two of you, and well, it would depend on the results of those. ”
“Eh!? That?… Indeed that thing is amazing…, but are you sure that it can help us defend against 60.000?” Bolt uttered those words in astonishment.
“Oh, rest assured, after all, we had practiced as the boy had ordered!”
Bolts showed a complicated expression while Lione showed a relaxed expression.
“The newly hired people are also keeping up fine right?”
“Yes. Everyone was confused at the beginning, but since I have properly trained them, everything should be fine! ”
Lione puffed her chest with pride toward Ryouma’s question.
Ryouma’s order can be viewed as strange for the mercenaries in this world, but Lione was able to fulfill them properly.
“If that’s true then good work, Lione-san. ”
After hearing Ryouma and Lione’s discussion, a smile returned to Bolts’ face.
“Furthermore, I’ve asked Laura and her sister to do something as well. ”
“Hmm? What is that?”
“Well, you will know when we fight the defensive battle.”
Hearing Ryouma’s words, Lione looked around.
“Fhun…, now that you mentioned it, they are not here? ”
“Yes. It would be bad if the formation is not right after all.”
“I see. Well, I will bet my trust on you, boy. Make sure you don’t disappoint me~. ”
Lione’s tone of voice sounded like she was joking, but her eyes were dead serious.
Despite being a small group, being a leader, she takes utmost pride in looking out for the safety of her members..
“Well, I guarantee you won’t be disappointed. ”
Ryouma shrugged his shoulders and answered her.
Ryouma is a man, not a god.There is no way for him to be able to say that he’d definitely win. Thus, he can only do his best.
“Alright, let’s move out!”
Following Ryouma’s words, the squad leaders advance their troops.
On Ryouma’s sides, the Marfisto sisters rode their horses in parallel.
“Ryouma-sama. We’ve arranged the direction as instructed. ”
“Good work. ”
Toward Laura’s report, Ryouma nodded his head.
“Also, about the other instruction that Ryouma-sama gave me, I’ve found them. ”
Listening to Sara’s report, Ryouma narrowed his eyes.
“Is it among the mercenaries?”
“That’s right. I found it among the newcomer mercenaries that we have hired. ”
“I see… Keep your eyes open, alright?”
“Yes. I will do my best. ”
“Do you know how many of them?”
Sara shook her head toward Ryouma’s question.
“I see…, well, it’s fine. Leave it be for now. Eventually, I will be able to make use of it. ”
After nodding her head, Sara advanced her horse toward the mercenaries group.
“Ryouma-sama. Shouldn’t we deal with the earlier matter first?”
“No…, the more cards you have on your hands, the better. Besides, even if we were to get rid of it right away, there would be another one coming up. ”
In response to Laura’s question, Ryouma’s eyes become narrow and sharp.
Just like a hawk looking at its prey.