The one who moves first was, of course, the Marden army.
Three roads were leading up to the Gold mine. Marden soldiers were seen running up from all three routes at the same time.
Of course, Natra soldiers were also blocking all three roads, thus before long, the sound of iron clashing could be heard.
“Run up! Move! Advance, step on your comrade corpse if necessary!”
“Stop them! Kick them off the road!”
Roaring orders from the commanders of each army flying around, heating up the battlefield even more.
The battle was quite even. Both attackers and defenders were seen struggling.
“Hoo, it seems Natra surprisingly able to do well…”
“Hahahaha, they are just desperate, after all, they are in front of the face of death…”
“We will see how long they would be able to hold up.”
Each Marden commanders who thought that they would win eventually held such impression while looking at the spectacle in front of them.
Of course, they didn’t have the leeway to lose. They thought the enemy’s struggle was something temporary. Looking at their overwhelming army, of course, they won’t worry about losing.
(Within a few hours, we should be able to reach 3/4 of the mountain…)
He had promised the royal palace that he would take back the Gold mine in a week. But looking at the situation, he expected less than that. Drawood laughed a little thinking about the triumph return they would achieve not long after this…
And as Drawood had predicted, as the soldiers began to get used to the battlefield, the situation changed…
However, it was opposite of Drawood expectation.
“… What’s going on…”
Marden army was being pushed back.
“What’s going on here…”
Perint was puzzled when he looked at the battlefield from the edge of the mountain summit.
During the war, the non-combatants people of the mine fled to Natra. All those who remained were those who have been drafted as soldiers. Though since they were not trained for combat, their main work was as engineers.
Perint too remained on the ground as their representative figure. Thus he was standing in the mids of the battlefield–, but right now anxiety and doubt swirling inside his chest.
The enemy had 30,000 men. Thirty thousand. When he heard that, he was convinced that he would die soon… Had he stayed loyal under Marden rule, he might die a few years later. But he thought that it would be better for him to die now while returning the kindness of the crown prince. –
“How come we ended up dominating the battlefield…?”
Contrary to the expectations of many, Natra soldiers which built defense position in the middle of the mountain path managed to repulsed Marden soldiers one after another.
Perint, who saw the spectacle could only voice his confusion.
“There are several reasons.”
Hearing the voice, Perint turned around…
“It’s fine, relax…”
With his hand touching Perint shoulder to stop him from kneeling, Wayne stood next to him.
“First of all, it is the difference in the level of the soldiers training. Look at the back of the Marden army. You can see a group wearing whiteish getup, yes?”
“Y-Yes. That is?”
“That person is an elite group personally led by the one leading the enemy’s army, General Drawood. The reason why it looked whiteish from here is because the light reflected by their armors. On the other hand, how do you see the other Marden’s soldiers?”
“… They are not well equipped…”
“The majority of Marden’s army made of peasants lured by gold. Drawood seems to not willing sending his elite troops. Instead, he sent out the peasants who have not received any training first… However, their opponents were soldiers who had received training by the Imperial soldiers, and they also had the morale of defeating Marden once previously. They are opponents that could not be broken just by any soldiers…”
Furthermore, Wayne continued…
“At this time, the wind blowing down from the top of the mountain. Thanks to that, the arrows could fly further away deep into the enemy’s formation. We also have prepared many dry moats as defense positions which is hard to see from the foot of the mountain, thus causing the opponents’ attacks become dull… —, but what matter most is the terrain…”
“The terrain is it?”
“Five thousand against thirty thousand. Looking at the numbers, it is terrifying but looks. How many soldiers are fighting right now?”
Being told that, Perint noticed. Thirty thousand enemy’s soldiers. But in reality, most of them were just standing still… At most those who fought were around 100 men.
“The width of the mountain paths are not that wide. It is impossible to spread thousands of soldiers. As a result, only a few hundred among the 5,000 men and the 30,000 men clashing against each other one at a time… What make it funny Perint, those thousands of soldiers eating up supplies only just by standing there…”
“I see… The reason why your Highness asked us the miners to make the side of the mountain roads slope steeper was this?”
“That’s how it is… Short sword aside, it is harder to climb a mountain while holding a sword and a spear. Even if they manage to climb, the Natra army is waiting for them… Thus they are forced to use the mountain roads.”
“But then, isn’t it possible for the Marden soldiers to make their own new path?”
“For the time being, I don’t think they would do that…”
Wayne shook his head in the response of Perint question.
“If there’s no mountain road then they would’ve done that. Or they would think of making the road themselves if the roads are too thin… However, there are three roads. And it is not like they could not fight on it. On the other hands, they need tools and time to make a new path…”
Wayne grinned looking at the situation in front of him…
“That’s why he was unwilling to use labor… A desire for an easy method… Making it flow… Then making them think ‘let us just use brute force to break through this.’ — That is the war where I fought…”
Finally, Perint understands something…
The young man by his side was not just a simple kind one, he didn’t have any intention of dying an honorable death just to meet his people expectation. It was his mind that spread beyond what the others thought, and there he saw a chance of victory…
“Well then, let us end the gossiping here… Perint, the matter I told you, how is it?”
“Ah… Yes! The construction is complete, it can be used anytime.”
Wayne’s gaze then directed at one point. It was the Marden main headquarter. Darwood, the commander that supposedly there…
“I bet right now he’s in the middle of regretting the unexpected situation but… I want you to dance on the palm of my hand a little bit more…”