RW Chapter 166

[Previous Chapter] [Table of Contents] [Next Chapter]

Chapter 166 On the eve of the decisive battle

On the fifth day after their agreement, Roland had finally readied all the raw material he needed for the production of the gun-cotton.

He had made some serious mistakes in the beginning with the electrolysis of the salt water, he wanted to take advantage of the left-over copper strips from Anna’s bullet production and use them as electrodes, but the final result was that the electrodes had dissolved in the water, giving birth to the possibility of forming chlorine during the electrolysis. With this the whole basin of saltwater was wasted.

The electrolyte was generally saturated salt water, but the problem was that the salt in this era was not as cheap as the price of cabbage. Therefore, when the water was drained and Roland detected that the copper ions had mixed into the brine, turning it also into waste. Roland felt as if he was throwing away gold royals instead of just salt. In the end, he was able to solve this problem by replacing the electrodes with carbon.

By adding caustic soda to the boiling water to dislodge the oil, he obtained an absorbent cotton gauze. He then later brought over the leftover caustic soda back to the chemistry lab.

The esterification of the gun-cotton was the most important step in the production process, but he didn’t exactly know how he could achieve this. Roland only knew that he would have to soak the gauze in the mixed acid and when the nitrification process was complete, he could then take it out.

Whether it was the solution ratio or the duration of the reaction, he didn’t know anything about this. So with this in mind, Roland ordered Kyle to form groups and run some experiments. Using hourglasses to observe the time, the pieces of cotton gauze were repeatedly dipped into the mixed acid and rinsed with water. At the last step they were soaked in a sodium hydroxide solution to remove the excess liquid acid. Afterward, the still wet products were then shipped back to the castle, where they got air-dried by Wendy.

The result was that the best esterification process would be achieved by using the highly concentrated fuming acid, and with it, most of the trial product could also be quickly ignited. In the end to achieve the best effect with the gun-cotton would be to use the ratio of one part nitric acid and two parts sulfuric acid.

When the rough formula was finally calculated, the laboratory would then start with the mass production and immediately after the soaking and washing process was completed would it be brought away by the First Army. In the end, even the Chief Instructor did not know what exactly it was that they had actually produced.

The dry gauze was cut into tiny fingernail sized pieces by the maidservants and afterward were stored in separate boxes, they were then sent to the North Slope Mountain, there in the backyard they would complete the final loading phase.

In the absence of machines, the process could only be done by using basic manpower. A bunch of guards would have to sit down, dip the gun-cotton in the adhesive and gently push it into the bottom of each cartridge, this way sealing the ignition hole. They then carefully poured in the gunpowder with a funnel, compacting it as far as possible and making sure that each cartridge received and equal share of the propellant.

The final step was to place the warhead on top of the cartridge. The warheads and cartridges were made by Anna who had to ensure that they would fit together so perfectly, that only a few gentle taps with a hammer were required to seal them.

The efficiency of production was very low, in one day they weren’t even able to produce more than 100 bullets. Then on the sixth day, Carter could finally start using the new weapon. Since the Chief Knights body fulfilled every qualification that was required to be an excellent marksman, his hit rate had been greatly improved after repeated practice over the last few days. Compared to the performance he had shown right after Roland introducing the weapon to him, it was like the difference between heaven and earth.

After fixing the problems with the ammunition, Carter no longer had to use his previous strange shooting posture, with him always having to point the gun downwards. Now, as long as the sealing collodion didn’t break, the gun chamber could easily be kept clean. And since it was several times more flammable than the black powder, the fast firing rate was also guaranteed.

Taking advantage of the last day of time they had left, Roland allowed Carter to train his rapid gun drawing and even dual-pistol shooting skills. The recoil of the 12mm pistols was so strong, that it quickly became difficult to guarantee that the second shot would score while holding the gun only with one hand. But in Roland’s plan, Carter would first hold back, letting Ashes draw in close and then start with his surprise attack.

Taking into account that Carter would carry two guns during the duel, if the fight ever turned to close combat, with ten bullets his success should be guaranteed. If the opponent closed in too quickly, Carter could quickly pull out his second gun. And taking into account that Ashes’ weapon offered a certain degree of defense, Roland deliberately chose the not easily deformed steel bullets, increasing its penetration ability instead of using bullets with a high lethality.

With the limits of the current era’s smelting technology, Ashes great sword was in all likelihood made out of pig iron to exaggerate its form without bringing any actual quality improvements. On the contrary, such bulky iron weapons were not actually fully forged, which lead to the problem that the internal stress distribution would become uneven, and with this, it couldn’t be called a good shield. From Roland’s point of view, her weapon could be classified at best, to be of common quality. So as long as their luck wasn’t awful tomorrow, the possibility of being hit by ricocheting bullets was very low.

If Ashes wanted to beat Carter, she would first have to close the distance, which was a cold weapons inherent disadvantage against hot weapons. As long as her eyesight wasn’t exaggerated to such a large degree that she could even track the ballistic curves, allowing her to instantly dodge the bullets, the starting distance should actually be an insurmountable gap.


Maggie flew back to Ashes room only after the sky had already started to turn dark.

“Why are you coming back so late these past few days?” Ashes asked after closing the window.

“Lightning took me with her to catch some birds,” When Maggie had changed back to her human form, she took a roasted bird leg out of her pocket, immediately filling the room with an overflowing aroma, “I deliberately left a piece for you.”

“I’ve eaten,” Ashes shook her head. “Is Lightning one of the witches in the Witch Cooperation Association?”

Gooo,” Maggie nodded frantically, “her ability is similar to mine, like me she can also soar in the skies, but her ability is much more easier to use than mine.” After pausing for a moment, she then asked, “Sister Ashes, do you insist on beating them? I feel… that they aren’t actually ever going to go with you, and they live here quite well. “

Ashes was startled by this unexpected question and didn’t answer.

“Because, even I want to stay here now, goo,” Maggie sat down on the bed and self-servingly said, “The bed is soft, and the food we get is also sumptuous. I noted that when it was time for lunch, the Lord specifically placed the table in the backyard so that he could dine together with the witches after their practice. Everyone was talking and laughing, and he occasionally also gives a few words, he looks completely different than those aristocrats that hate us. This afternoon Lightning had taken me with her to play Gwent, it is a game playable for two and they even gave me two decks, Ashes sister, do you want to play together with me? I will teach you.”

“No…” Ashes shook her head and took a deep breath. She was aware of the changes in Maggie’s behaviour taking place during the last few days, but she only realized just now, that her own beliefs had also been quite befuddled.

These days, the majority of witches were living in fear, living without any purpose, their only pursuit was to live a comfortable and stable life. The same could be said about Maggie before she had been accepted by Tilly. She had lived within the reeds of a thatched house in the slums of King’s City, just like a real bird, she had spent her nights within the slits of the roof beams. Even after Tilly had decided to cross the seas eastwards, Maggie was still running around, contacting those other witches living in hiding, without even stopping once in the last six months. Most probably she was experiencing a life of peace and quiet for the first time ever.

Wasn’t it exactly the same for me? After I have met Tilly, I suddenly lived a life I had never dared to dream of. But now, after being accustomed to a relatively quiet life in the palace, I ignored the attraction of what it means to finally call a place my home again, in the eyes of those others witches, this is something they have never had before. It is only logical that they want to keep on staying here, wanting to protect their territory and all the feelings it contains, for me it is probably also the reason that I want to protect Tilly in the first place…

If Roland Wimbledon really does what he has said he would, with him being able to resist the God’s Punishment Army, there is no doubt that living in Border Town will be a better choice than traveling to the Fjords and establishing a Kingdom of Witches in that strange land. It seems to be just the place that our hearts are yearning for, but in the end, how much they will have to suffer no one can really predict.

However, if he is unable to resist the church, will the other witches leave?

Ashes mood suddenly cooled down.

Changing the perspective of her thoughts, if Tilly is unable to gain a foothold in the Fjords, I am afraid I will choose to stand beside her, guarding her until the last moment. As the person who I decided to be leading me towards my destiny, I won’t leave her in before reaching it.

“Living here you will always be under the threat of the Church, and if they are unable to stop the God’s Punishment Army, it is only a matter of time before Border Town will be destroyed.”

Indeed, the test was no longer necessary… but Ashes still decided to go through with it. In order to wake them up and prove her point.

“And if they can stop them?” Maggie muttered.

“I hope so too, so I will help them to verify this point.” Ashes voice became gradually smaller.

Finally closing her eyes, she was now ready to go all out.

[Previous Chapter] [Table of Contents] [Next Chapter]

  • Xegqu

    Thanks for the chapter

  • ambi

    Thanks for the chapter Roxerer and Jatz! Can’t wait to see them take on the initial Church probe.

  • Neruz

    Guncotton opens up the possibility of machine guns, as well as greatly improving both the firepower and necessary maintenance of his riflemen. He should be able to do semi-automatic rifles too which will help with his manpower issue a lot, maybe even skip right past semi-automatic rifles and just go straight to an AK knockoff.

  • Zeth

    Thank you!!

  • DudeForDuke

    “Okay! Now we have the black powder revolver finished. How is development coming along on the laser pistol?”
    “Swimmingly, my lord!”

  • JinVodka (*´﹃`*)

    (_( ・ω<)_() ≡≡≡❤ ◎
     / つノ

  • MangoGuy

    Nice chapter… Roxerer I think it would be better if you could keep a couple of links relating to the science or maybe at least give everyone an idea as not all reactions and chemistry stuff mentioned is dealt with by the readers.

  • Kuq Ku

    Heh sounds like Maggie is a convert haha to many nights spent in cold places hiding while not benefiting from the kind of life style that is available at Border Town, you cant blame Maggie for looking on enviously, with Lightning going on about this and that, it would be hard for Maggie to ignore, I want this very much 😀 maggie is adorable and Im imagining a fat pidgeon with leather goggles that match Lightnings perched on her shoulder enjoying her surroundings, no longer in cold dark places surveying on behalf of someone that had yet to let her enjoy anything Tillys group offer.

  • Kin

    I wonder if he can make a lethal paintball gun

    • DudeForDuke

      A lethal airgun (I mean, that’s what a paintball gun is – an airgun – but it’s purposely made to just be non-lethal)? More likely than you think…
      Check out the Girandoni air rifle.

  • Lan

    Ashes sister -> Sister Ashes

  • esya

    Lol the witch practically become a bird. So cute with the goo sound.

  • NaoSou


  • Nantoka

    Thanks for the chapter :3

  • Balanite

    Hey, this part:

    “In the end to achieve the best effect with the gun-cotton would be to use the technique of first soaking it in sulfuric acid and after that in the nitric acid.”

    Should actually be “would be to use the ratio of one part nitric acid and two parts sulfuric acid.”

    Also, “which lead to the problem that the internal stress distribution would become uneven, and with this, they could only be called a good shield.”

    Should be “could not be called a good shield”.

    Finally, “No…” Ashes shook her head and took a deep breath. She was aware of the changes taking place during the past few days, but right now, she suddenly realized that her thoughts seem to have been caught up in a misunderstanding.”

    May be better phrased as “She was aware of the changes in Maggie’s behaviour taking place during the last few days, but she only realized just now, her own beliefs had also became quite befuddled.”

    Keep up the good work! This is quite a difficult chapter to translate, so thank you a lot!

    • KitKat

      thank you

    • KitKat

      Thank you for your interest

      It meant that the sword could only serve as a shield and not for it original purpose

      the last suggestion sounds slightly awkward,.

  • Grey Human

    Thank you for the chapter

  • icicle

    thanks for the translation

  • Danis

    Thanks for the chapter 😀


    Using guncotton which is used as explosive for warheads to seal bullets, funny. Now Roland needs to mass produce guncotton in lower concentration acids to replace black gunpowder for firearms and cannons!

  • phyrigia

    dah… that next teaser title …. I can’t help but drool ….
    so did roland even learn how to use the gun he created? I think he should….
    what if he’s in danger? he can’t possible hope for the witches to protect him from churches right?
    and even if there’s nana, never know if the churches would hire assassin to kidnap nana..

  • Oak

    Thanks for the chapter

  • john delacruz

    Looks like the translators are having a hard time with this one.

  • Beta

    I’m still confused on why Roland, a mechanical engineer, didn’t start with girandoni type air rifles and normal gunpowder canons? He would save on gunpowder, have virtually unlimited reloads by have his steem engines compress air into the removable air into tanks, have simple rapidfire breachload capability, and the barrels need not be as strong resulting in lighter arms and reduced resources to produce them, and such air rifles are mechanical devices with little need of chemical components that he is struggling to come up with for repeating firearms.

    With air rifles he would have a base to start working on smokeless powder based firearms which are clearly superior to air rifles since although air pressure can push projectiles past the speed of sound, it is hard to do so while maintaining accuracy.

    • Raufgar

      Interesting, TIL. But this means a soldier using one would have 2 things to reload; the air tank and the bullets. Not much different from their current black powder rifles (powder+ball), yes, but cleaner. And, like you said, rapid-fire capability.

      But this means that, when he finally perfects smokeless powder arms, they’d have to undergo training again to learn to use them. Progressing from where they are means they still have a healthy appreciation and caution of gunpowder.

      I guess the main reason, sorry for the 4th wall, is that likely our author has not heard of Girandoni-type air rifles before…

      • Rahmahdi Adi

        There is possibility that he doesn’t know perfrctly mechanism to make those two things, remember mc not a weapon otaku like in gun ota or someone with very extensive knowledge

        • DudeForDuke

          The Girandoni was a pneumatic “air” rifle – similar to the CO2 powered guns of today (airsoft, paintball, BB, pellet, ect.). It’d be very difficult for a mechanical engineer to not only not know but also not be interested/familiar with such pneumatic designs because they’re used for a lot of modern applications.

      • Jatz

        Unlikely that he hasn’t heard of it, the author seems pretty up to date on the all of the technical details.

    • mllhild

      Because the giradoni rifle is too complex compared to an arquebust(a metal pipe with a small hole in the back monted on a woden stick and a metal bar with a nail holding it in the middle as trigger).

      Nothing to say that he would
      1. need 1 pump for every soldier, 1500 ´pump strokes to get the reservoir up to 800psi(55atm)
      2. he needs sealing valves make the air compressor or the rifle possible
      3. the soldiers need to run to the air compressor each time they want to reload, compared to only one guy running up an down handing out pouches with new ammunition and gun powder
      4. falling penetration power with each shot, this means the soldiers need to remember in the chaos to go back and reload

      • Kuq Ku

        Was watching a Youtube of this gun from guys who crafted an exact replica, this was the gun that Lewis and Clarke used while traveling across America, it amazed the native population that saw how many shots it could fire, the guy in the documentary said that a rifleman would be pretty self sufficient, just needed 2 reservoirs, its pretty amazing lol this gun looks so beautiful and elegant and quiet compared to its noisy sibling. The reservoir pump applied exactly 800 psi 😀 isnt that amazing, people are so clever sometimes 😛 I wonder how they thought that up lol, what would have made them use that?

        1. The guys in that video said you can have 2 reservoirs on hand to replace the one that was in place.
        2. Ana would be able to make those valves right?
        3. See 1.
        4. Im sure Roland can figure out how to prevent that loss in penetration power.

        • mllhild

          First something to show what the arquebus is that they are probably using

          With a drill and some basic tools even I can make 10 of those per day.

          1. These screwed parts have to be precise to prevent leakage. No chance to get this done with medieval technology. Be happy if they can even make a screw.
          2. Now she could maybe, but at that time she could only manipulate flame, so no.
          3. Do you realize how difficult it would be to make even just one of these air reservoirs per soldier?
          4. Nope, he can’t, he isn’t a mage. PV=nRT gives you the pressure. If you get gas out the pressure will fall proportionally. And please don’t suggest heating its because this is not well controllable, easily causing the thing to blow up.
          5. Bonus point for the fact that there are a lot of movable parts that can malfunction or break. Remember that Rolands production facilities aren’t of the highest standards.
          6. The simple question of production time. He was hard pressed to get even a few metal pipes with a hole produced until the start of winter.
          7. Maneuverability. Do you plan to keep dragging the steam engine to every place they fight? And what about people patrolling for a longer route? This thing is heavier than a cannon and also more sensible to impact. Also it takes a while to start up until the fire is started and the water is heated to produce steam. Not to mention the noise. Can you imagine the night raid they did?

          • Kuq Ku

            Im just saying that the author has created a convenient set of circumstances to create what he has so far, with his modern knowledge and ability to unravel some of the problems he has come across while using conveniently skilled witches that happen to have the right set of skills that he needs, can overcome the limitations present.

            They have a witch that can move heavy cannons by making them lighter, hes got Ana thats like a 3d printer, forge, flamethrower etc lol. Im saying that its not outside the realms of possibility of having a suped up lethal Paint gun that can function and be used successfully, sure this kind of gun was no longer used due to various problems, its not like he couldnt apply modern knowledge to fix it or make it work better.

            Im not outright discounting or discrediting its use in Rolands world, Im saying its possible, there is potential for its use, but the author has gone a different route, which makes this a moot topic, unless people want to discuss how it couldve been applied in the story.

            I had only come to know of the this gun through this post, so Im no expert nor willing to extrapolate all that is needed to craft this, but it made me grin, how interesting would it have been if Roland had opted for this, it might not be as practical but its great to contemplate what would happen in the hands of someone with knowledge of such things.

  • MangoGuy

    well leave the technical terms as is unless they have a really popular trivial or trade name..also,RTW is one of the fastest growing and mot stable one out there so dont worry about missing chapters!! we got our back!

    • Jatz

      The author isn’t afraid of using the scientific names

      • MangoGuy

        What I mean is even scientist use some trivial name rather than actual name…like benzene and stuff like that

        • KitKat

          the question is…. Is it the same for asian scientist. It’s pretty common to see japenese/chinese authors use only the technical name.

          • MangoGuy

            Yeas I am from Asia so I know a bit about that. The trivial names I am talking about here are the PIN that is accepted by scientists the world over,including Asia.

            • KitKat

              Are you talking about the periodic table?

              • MangoGuy

                No the elements don’t have trivial names. Stuff like baking soda, washing soda, soda ash, benzene toluene TNT etc are all trivial names. Instead of using super long and hard to remember things,these names are used. PIN stands for Preferred IUPAC Name

                • KitKat

                  I’d be nice if there was an easy to use database for this. Oh well, guess I’ll just have to use google.

                  • MangoGuy

                    yup, there are a lot of chemistry sites on google.


    (preview) Single base smokeless gunpowder soon? And queue counter shows higher number each day?!

    • Jatz

      Remember, Rolands goal isn’t taking over the world. He just wants to improve the standard of living. If he was even a little more bloodthirsty he might have already caused plenty of damage just by using gunpowder alone, sending sabouteurs to assasinate his enemies.

      • MOHLT

        Say that to church and devils. Sticks and stones won’t be enough to break their bones.

        • KitKat

          Thwy don’t actually care whether Roland is a war monger or not, the church believes the worlds in danger and that they are they only ones able to stop it


    Single base smokeless gunpowder soon?
    Queue counter shows higher number each day?!

  • Proxy Account

    (teaser comment)
    – – – – – – – – –
    *Turns out Roland’s gonna be the one to challenge Ashes.*
    Roland: Say hello to my little friend-
    *opens cylinder, drops the bullets, blows the barrel*
    *Walks toward the setting sun.*

    • MOHLT

      Misses all shots by length of a single barn and manages to shoot himself with remaining 5th bullet due to lack of firearm training!

      • Proxy Account

        Oh, yeah, there’s that. 😀

  • Balanite

    I would use “guncotton”, considering that’s what people used to call it when it’s used as a propellant in a cartridge, which is what Roland is doing now.

    “When used as a propellant or low-order explosive, it was originally known as guncotton.”

    Ultimately, it’s your decision as translator which term you want.

  • Mossadegh

    I’d call it either guncotton or nitrocellulose. Pyroxylin and coloxylin are terms used to classify the extent that the cotton has been nitrated and unless you have a healthy interest in chemistry or explosives you’d almost never come across the terminology.

    • M32

      Yup, but Pyroxylin and Coloxylin are solutions of guncotton and something else. They are not formed making guncotton.

      I am curious where you got those terms from. Did the raws mention these?

    • DudeForDuke

      Nitrocellulose would be more universal and appropriate, I think. Although guncotton is also correct and appropriate.

      A Google search for “coloxylin” shows only about 45 results. According to one site, it references coloxylin as the dinitrate form (not exactly from a trusted source, either). Pyroxylin is well known, at least.

  • Prongsjiisan

    You should. Because the raw state pyroxylin..

  • VerneJules

    So this time he made a mistake, at least his memory of modern knowledge is becoming more believable.

    • Neruz

      Even with his mechanical engineering background he probably never did anything with electrolysis.

      • Fones2411

        I am still in High school & I still needed to make a Galvanic Cell for my practical Exam using a Zinc Anode, Copper Cathode, CuSO4 & KNO3 salt bridge. Doesn’t they teach this things in 9th Grade everywhere?

        • phyrigia

          no… I dont think so. at least if roland get science subject. But roland probably get into mechanical engineering subject instead in school.

          • Fones2411

            Don’t you need to minimum marks on Chemistry, Physics, Higher Mathematics to be eligible to study Engineering?

            • WanSage

              some people think that studying engineering only entails engineering *shrugs*

            • Rood

              Depending on the field of engineering, the chemistry knowledge tends to be more focused on materials sciences. Instead of things like process engineering, organic/inorganic chemistry, quantum chemistry, reaction kinetics and subjects like those.

            • mllhild

              Depends, here in Brasil for example you need just to pass the entrance exam of the university with a high score. (thou math and physic have greater weight if you applied for a STEM course)

        • SeraphiMaelstrom

          Don’t* these things*/this thing* (need* not sure about this one, maybe, “I have to make..”, sounds more appropriate.) Sorry, I had to…

          Also, they might, but who, I say, who remembers these chemistry shits if these will not be in their major? I remember getting a satisfactory grade in my chemistry class back in high school but I only know the very basic of it now since I am an engineering student.

          • Fones2411

            Sorry, English is not my first Language. Also isn’t Galvanic Cell one of the Basic Experiments on 9th grade Chemistry

        • Joshua Nusbaum

          sadly my highschool chem class didn’t, but we did play with some acids.. chem teacher even melted wax i think it was one day over a bunson burner and then added water… caused a huge flame and darkened the roof of room a little bit where it had approached

          • Fones2411

            I had to make make a Galvanic cell for 9th Grade Finals practical Exam & had to determine the concentration of NaOH solution by using standard HCl solution for 10th grade finals

        • Atamahead027

          my highschool class teach about alchemy. my teacher Mr. Edward is a short man with blond hair and a metal arm

          • Fones2411

            Tell him his wife is hot

            • Atamahead027

              dunno about his wife but i heard his lil brother was living in an armor until lately

              • Fones2411

                You mean the Pedophile

                • Yatusky

                  I heard he had a poor friend in his school days who was turned into a talking dog! The poor girl…

        • mllhild

          Nope, you are quite lucky. Many schools don’t teach any pratical chemestry and I only had some very basic and useless one in college.
          Thats a part of why I consider that I learned more from watching Youtube videos than in 6 years of college.

          Looking back at the 18 years I spend in school, I reason that they could be reduced to 4 to 6 years if one has decent teachers, infrastructure and cuts out useless stuff you only memorize for the test and then forget again anyway. Oh, and you could add an entire “Do it yourself course” for a lot of areas in the afternoon

          • Fones2411

            Bad luck for you. In my country even getting A on National exam gets you in a average university.

            • mllhild

              Do you mean with this that its hard to get into an average university where you live?
              Also I don’t trust ratings for universities at all.
              Reason: Somehow the mechanical engineering course I’m attending at my university is rated as one of the 5 best in south america.

        • Rahmahdi Adi

          Nope, many schools even only teach their students chemistry only in theory as for the experiments or so called practice only very good school can afford that

        • Beauism

          my scooll teach sex. hell yeah.

          • Fones2411

            It’s a part of Physical education.

      • Jason

        Either way, I am under the impression that his memories of his past life is near photographic. So he would just need to l have read it.
        Perhaps on NU?

      • M32

        Depends. I was chem eng, but my uni had compulsory courses for all the others for the first two years. More than likely, he forgot.

        • Neruz

          Yeah if he has done anything with electrolysis it was probably back in high school or possibly first year university, which is long enough that he’s likely forgotten the details and hence made a mistake.