Chapter 301 – Army of Undead
Brettel City had undergone a slight change. The civilians that dressed like beggars within the city often saw a different scene from what they usually saw. The soldiers of Brettel City that lived like cowardly borers had recently become energized. It was like they had been possessed by something. They would actually form a tidy troop and run while carrying weights; or practice their swordsmanship within the city lord’s mansion that was undergoing steady repair.
The originally cowardly and useless soldiers who’d worn fearful expressions on their faces gradually toughened up beneath the harsh training from the knights in silver armor. Their previously wax colored, thin looks also hardened and had unknowingly become more defined.
It wasn’t just the soldiers in Brettel City, but some other areas also underwent significant changes. An example would include the pitted city wall that was now repaired by some old and retired soldiers. The changes were especially apparent at the city lord’s mansion. It had suddenly become filled with life. The large numbers of people visiting and leaving it had even caused it to become a bit disorderly.
For the civilians of Brettel City, who’d already given up hope, they weren’t too affected by these changes. They were used to the city lord being the first to escape and didn’t think these changes would have any effect. Instead, some of them even maliciously speculated about the harm these actions might bring to them.
They didn’t know if the changes in the city would cause the bandits and soldiers of the seven duchies, who hadn’t visited in several months, to think that there was loot worth pillaging in the city once again. It would be another terrible experience if they became interested and came back to rob the city once again.
Han Shuo slowly walked out of the secret chamber within the city lord’s mansion very early in the morning, to find Faulke, Dick, and Chester already waiting in the living room. When he saw the three of them, the three people saw Han Shuo move his storage ring, dumping weapons as well of bags full of provisions onto the floor. Han Shuo looked towards Faulke and said, “Use these weapons and chariots properly. You also have to control the provisions properly. Furthermore, start recruiting today. Civilians can enter the troops as long as they are young and strong. For now, promise them one gold coin aside from their meals.”
As an earth knight sent over by Lawrence, Faulke naturally possessed uncommon strength. Several soldiers had already died from the intense training under Faulke. However, the death of these soldiers had actually served as examples, causing all of the soldiers to truly realize the harshness of their training, meaning that none of them dared to be there just to make up the numbers.
Faulke would maniacally train these soldiers in the morning and then discuss military tactics with the high-ranking soldiers at night in the city lord’s mansion. Han Shuo also felt that he learnt a lot after listening in on the side for a few days, and felt that Faulke was indeed an officer that he could place his trust in.
“Understood,” Faulke wasn’t a man of many words. He normally had on a stern face and exuded the righteousness and bloodlust of a soldier.
“Dick, have there been any unusual events in the surroundings recently?” Han Shuo smiled at at Dick, who was in charge of the Dark Mantle operations in the area, “Sir Count, apart from some of the civilians not understanding your actions, nothing special has occurred recently around Brettel City. However, according to Dark Mantle reports, I believe a wave of bandits will pay a visit in a few days. Of course, their targets should only be the mountain people in Mount Tali near Brettel City,” Dick replied respectfully. Although the soldiers in Brettel City were cowardly and useless, the local Dark Mantle branch still operated normally with Dark Star spies concealed in the surrounding mountains.
Han Shuo nodded and then said with interest, “Very good. Keep your eye on this, figure out when the bandits will strike, along with their numbers and path. Faulke, perhaps it’s time we test these soldiers. If we don’t stir them up a bit, I think it would be hard for them to truly grow.”
“My Lord, you are very right about this. I will make them look more lively,” Faulke replied.
Three days later, a battle that often occurred happened intensely yet again on Mount Tali, the mountain southwest of Brettel City. Redbeard Troda led four thousand savage bandits and rushed up Mount Tali, disregarding his losses. On the other side, the mountain people hid in large bushes and behind large boulders beside the meandering paths of the mountain, using bows to stop the bandits from climbing the mountain.
The mountain people had already become used to these sort of attacks. They naturally had their own way of handling it. Large rolling boulders and arrows caused quite a bit of damage to the bandit horde. The mountain people that hid behind the boulders on the mountain were much braver than the soldiers within Brettel City. They were not afraid of the bandits’ attack at all, using a variety of tactics to harass and repel the invaders.
“Faulke, do you think those bandits can emerge victorious?” Han Shuo, a bit of distance away from the bandits, turned his head towards Faulke at the foot of the mountain.
Faulke shook his head and answered bluntly, “It’s impossible, although Redbeard Troda’s bandits number plenty, the mountain people of Mount Tali have the geographical advantage. Furthermore, they are already used to the mountain battles. It’s impossible for war horses to walk the meandering mountain paths, yet Troda does not have the determination to fight to the death, so he’s destined to not gain any loot from these attacks.”
“Only a hundred something bandits are dead from four thousand savage bandits. Hehe, Faulke, do you think that we have a chance of doing them in?” Han Shuo asked once again.
“That’s also impossible. The road at the foot of Mount Tali is flat, so we have no geographical advantage to make use of. What’s more, these soldiers haven’t been trained for that long, I don’t think that their courage can immediately face the savagery of the Redbeard bandits. What’s more, we merely have a thousand three hundred people. Sire, this is not a good idea,” Faulke was shocked after hearing Han Shuo’s words, causing him to immediately advise otherwise to Han Shuo.
Sadly, Han Shuo didn’t listen to Faulke’s suggestion. He chuckled and said, “Faulke, you forget that I’m a necromancer. Necromancers specialize in this sort of large-scale battles. What’s more, these bandits don’t have any outstanding light archmages. I think we can give it a try.”
Before Faulke could speak again, Han Shuo had already walked towards the Redbeard bandits with a smile, while saying, “Attack with me. I think you should know what to do.”
Han Shuo took out the skeletal staff from his spatial ring. With a low chant, dark beings began to appear one by one. Due to the existence of the skeletal staff, the power of the summoning magic was doubled. Fifty hate warriors, two hundred something zombies, seven hundred something skeletal warriors and three hundred gargoyles led by ten evil knights were summoned by Han Shuo as he used the skeletal staff and poured in a huge amount of mental power.
A thousand two hundred something dark beings, including powerful evil knights and hate warriors, along with soaring gargoyles, stood in an organized fashion and marched towards the bandits under the direction of Han Shuo’s skeletal staff.
After seeing so many dark creatures appear with Han Shuo’s chant, Faulke felt his life suddenly turn bit surreal. Only when Han Shuo’s figure had nearly disappeared from sight did he finally react and quickly roar towards the soldiers behind him, those ones that were terrified of him, “Today is the day to test your training! You have already seen the city lord’s prowess. I don’t doubt that he has the strength to kill all of you just by himself. The results of being a coward will definitely be quite pitiful, that’s why your only choice is to listen to my orders and attack!”
The soldiers who were already frightened felt a chill grip their hearts after hearing Faulke’s roar. They glanced at Han Shuo waving the skeletal staff with a sinister expression. As courage and cowardliness warred against each other, all of them surprisingly found the courage to fight. They grasped their weapons with a determined gaze, and made the preparation to die in an effort to avoid falling at the city lord’s hands.
The little skeleton with glittering white bones rode a special undead creature full of spikes that was five meters long and three meters tall. This creature seemed to be a hedgehog that had been magnified a thousand times. It carried a tail full of spikes and had only a single grey eye that was suffused with the aura of death.
The earth elite zombie and the wood elite zombie each rode on a fire-breathing black armored warhorse. These were usually only owned by an evil knight. They stayed at the little skeleton’s sides. These three little things were actually more cocky than the ten evil knights and showed up at the very front of the troops. What was weird was that the ten evil knights wasn’t dissatisfied by this apparent assertion of the pecking order and followed docilely behind them.
“What-What was that?” A cowardly bandit at the rear screamed shrilly after turning around to see what the dull roar behind him was. He was completely flabbergasted at the sight that greeted him.
Focused on the battle in front of him, Redbeard Troda was annoyed and had a sullen expression on his face as he roared on top of a boulder. When he heard the clamor from his subordinates, he immediately cursed, “Stupid pigs, charge!”
“Boss, behind. Look behind!” The bandit was terrified as he anxiously pointed behind him and continued to shriek.
When Troda raised his head, he was met with a dark aura of death. He found that a horde of undead creatures emanating an icy air not of this world was marching inexorably towards them.