Chapter 4 Episode 32
Small mutterings resounded inside the room.
A man lying on the bed in the bedroom located on one of the corners of the fort.
He gazed at the ceiling and sighed for many times.
Moore sighed again.
He closed his eyes but once again he immediately opened them.
No one knows how long he did that.
The darkness outside the window began to disappear. It was thirty minutes before the sun rises from the horizon.
(I can’t sleep at all…)
The time he laid down on his bed had not changed.
In other words, he had laid down on the bed without being able to sleep for hours.
The sense of something wrong bothered him throughout the night.
And such anxiety troubled Moore’s heart.
In the battlefield, when the time to sleep comes, soldiers should sleep. And soldiers should be able to switch between asleep and awake immediately.That was why soldiers should sleep whenever possible since no one knows when prolonged a battle spanning days would happen.
However, Moore could not sleep at all.
(I guess I have to give up sleeping now and get up…)
He got up on his bed and rang the bell placed on the bedside.
“Please excuse me… Is there something you need?”
He ordered a guard guarding his room to bring some water.
Moore poured the water from the jug into the cup, after he drank the cold water he could feel his body being refreshed.
It seems the anxiety had undermined his body.
After a while, Moore lay down on the bed once again.
It was not for sleeping this time.
(I don’t understand… What is this feeling of anxiety?)
It felt like some warning bell resounded inside Moore’s heart.
It was similar to the feeling when an ambush was about to happen.
It felt like an insect was crawling beneath one’s skins.
However, Moore was currently on the border between Ortomea Empire and the Zalda Kingdom. Furthermore, he was inside a stone-walled fortress with thousands of soldiers guarding it.
Notiz fort had been built at the western end of the Notiz plain, which meant an attack could only happen from the front, and only if the Zalda Kingdom managed to defeat Sardina’s army.
And Moore never received a report that Sardina had been defeated.
If the invading army was completely lost, it would cause the Ortomea Empire to question its very own survival.
That was why such report of defeat wouldn’t be missed at any cost.
“Damn it, what’s going on with me…”
Saying that, Moore got off the bed and shook his head. Then he grasped his beloved sword.
From a logical point of view, the uneasiness inside his heart was something mind-boggling.
But his intuition said he could not discard it either.
In the end, he doesn’t know whether or not he should ignore it.
(Because I’ve believed in my intuition all this time, I survived many battlefields…)
On his hand, he held a sword with a complicated carved pattern.
It was a sword forged by the best blacksmiths and also being bestowed with magic power performed by the best magic arts users.
For Moore, this sword was his alter ego.
His expression turns sharp the moment his hand held the sword cold handle.
In reality, his intuition was never wrong.
Because right now, flocks of hungry wolves were going to strike with their fangs.
Countless people crawled on the fort courtyard.
Many carts had been left alone forming long lines.
It was left unattended without bringing the goods into the warehouse because they thought it was already late when they arrived, and by the next morning they were going to leave to the front line, it was more efficient without unloading the goods.
And Ryouma used that opening to enter the Notiz fort at night. <TLN: Trojan Horse Ryouma style>
For the enemy, it was certainly an effective choice.
Because they knew they were going to use the cart soon anyway, thus there was no reason to unload and load it again the next day.
However, because of that, Notiz Fort have to pay a great price.
If one were to checks the documents properly, there should be a big difference between those submitted and the actual goods being transported.
Inside his heart, Ryouma laughed merrily.
Ryouma shakes his hand forward.
Following the signal, ErnestGora’s knights wearing Ortomea Empire armors scattered throughout the fort.
They also brought sufficient amount of oil with them.
No matter how hard a stone fortress was from the outside, once the fire is started from within, the people inside the fortress would suffer.
Since it was impossible to make everything inside a fortress using only stones.
“Now then, please dance according to my expectations…”
Small mutters leaked out from Ryouma’s lips.
During the dawn, people’s wariness were low, it was a convenient time for a sneak attack.
At this time, security guards who got up all night watching the surroundings are usually tired due to the fatigue.
Notiz fort might possess strong defensive power if attacked from the outside, but not from the inside.
Before long, the quiet morning turned into turmoil within a second.
“Fire! It’s fire!”
“Extinguish it! Water, get some water!”
At first, it was a small voice, but then it was getting bigger and bigger.
“It’s an enemy attack! It’s an enemy attack!”
“Wrong! Calm down… Gather each units and wait for an order!”
“Are you a moron?! We will die if we don’t extinguish the fire first! Bring some water here!”
Burning fires fuel human’s fears, and black smoke interferes with their vision.
Fear due to the fire. No matter what world, humans always fear fire.
An angry and panic voice could be heard one after another.
Information got tangled up, caused no one to be able to grasp the situation accurately.
Everything was in utter chaos.
Furthermore, ErnestGora soldiers who dressed up as Ortomea Empire soldiers shouted random nonsense, causing the Ortomea soldiers getting further confused.
“Everything seems good, eh… Sara, Laura. Each of you takes 500 men with you and set fire on the storehouses. Since the security should be loose around now…”
After the barracks and monitoring towers were set ablaze, next it was the turn of the storage rooms.
That was the plan Ryouma had devised.
“We have a lot of oil with us. Don’t hesitate and burn everything to the ground!”
Sara and Laura nodded their heads after hearing Ryouma’s words, then they left together with the soldiers.
The two of them didn’t hesitate to head towards their destination because they had already memorized the structure of the fort beforehand.
“Now then, I should make my move as well…”
While looking at the Marfisto sisters who left the place, Ryouma pulled out his sword from its sheath.
“Here I come… Don’t give them mercy! Kill anyone in sight! We don’t need any war prisoners! Charge!”
A roar rose from ErnestGora knights who were standing behind him.
“Fire, you said?”
He replied to his adjutant’s urgent report with a low voice.
His aide looked surprised that Moore had already worn his armor and ready for battles.
“Sir ! There are fires surging within the fortress, and also the eastern and western towers.”
“What did you say ?”
Moore knitted his eyebrows after he heard the report.
“What has happened ? What is the security personnel doing ?”
“I don’t understand it myself. All of it happens in a split second… Every units are currently trying to extinguish the fire, but the progress is slow…”
Moore fell into silence after he heard his aide’s report. His brain tried to process all the information which lead to one conclusion.
And with the sense of anxiety he had since last night, he immediately draws a clear conclusion.
And if he considers it properly, there were many unnatural points yesterday.
(Damn it… Those Zalda men… Are they aiming at my head? No, this is bad… If what they aimed was something I feared, the Zalda invasion will turn into failure… And her highness Sardina fate will…)
Certainly, fighting the fire was something very important.
However, it was obvious that the fire was being instigated by someone.
Thus it must not be just any ordinary fire either.
Their real aim was…
“You moron ! does that meant everyone is leaving their post ?!”
It was a sharp harsh voice. Moore began running…
(Not yet… If it’s now, there’s still a chance…)
It should be possible to calm down the troops and reorganize the chain of command if Moore manages to give out orders efficiently.
However, Moore himself needs to take over the leadership personally.
He needs to show his figure in front of the soldiers and inspire them.
“B-But still… How did all this happen…?”
His aide who followed behind him spoke while catching some breath.
Afterward, the soldiers they passed along the way follow them one by one.
Moore was currently descending through the staircase.
High-pitched metallic sounds clashing against each others could be heard.
However, before he can head towards the source, unknown figures were blocking Moore from moving further.
“Who are you people ?! How dare you to block Moore-sama’s path !”
It was not unreasonable for his aide to raise his voice.
In this world, social status was very important.
No one dared to stand in front of Moore’s path since he was a high ranking knight who was given the command of Notiz fort.
Although they didn’t have any intention of harshly punishing people because of it, it was certainly effective to be used to enforce order in this situation.
“You bastards, what unit are you coming from ? Give me your name !”
The people who blocked their path then moved to the sides, and a man comes forward.
While feeling a faint sense of incongruity in his dignified footsteps, the aide raised his voice.
“Take your helmet off ! Show me your face !”
The aide approached the man in a hurry.
“Wait ! Get away from him !”
Moore’s high voice resounded inside the fortress.
The moment the aide heard his voice, the aide could feel something cold stuck on his stomach.
A dagger pierced through his stomach.
Taste of blood stuck in his throat.
He had tasted it many times when he was near death during battles.
“What… has happened…”
He looked down and saw the bloodied dagger in the man’s hand.
Light gradually disappeared from the aide’s eyes. Until the end, the aide could not understand why he was being killed.
“I knew it, you bastards are people from Zalda…”
Hearing those words the soldiers standing behind Moore pulled out their swords.
Moore’s words pulled those soldiers back to reality after they saw the unbelievable scene unfold before their eyes.
“Let’s hear your name…”
It was a low and cold voice.
Murderous intent can be felt coming from Moore’s whole body.
Saying so the man took off the helmet and exposed his face.
A man with a good-natured face.
There was some charm from his appearance, but not absolutely handsome either.
“This is our first time meeting. I’m part of the Rozeria Kingdom’s nobility, the ruler of Wortenia peninsula, My name is Mikoshiba Ryouma. Pleased to meet you.”
Ryouma then smiled warmly.
He slightly lowered his head while keeping watch of the enemy’s movement.
However, Ryouma’s soft smile was instead terrifying for Moore.
It felt like he was seeing a monster with the shape of a human.