LTBE - Chapter 450.2: Alicia’s Counterattack (2)
Jungle warfare was indeed a thing in the history of the Sia Continent, the most notable example of its use being the Ancient Austine Empire’s Highland Division. However, the loss of military technology and equipment during the mass migration had made jungle warfare taboo.
While entering a jungle to conceal an army’s whereabouts so as to launch an ambush at night was a legitimate strategy, there lay a problem with it that simply couldn’t be circumvented—the demonic beasts residing in the jungle.
Furthermore, the jungle that the Ascarts’ army had dove into was the one located by the borders of the Theocracy and the Austine Empire. Neither country had ever bothered dispatching their troops to clear the demonic beasts from there, making it a paradise for the demonic beasts.
If the Ascarts were truly intending to ambush them through such a method, the chances were that they would find themselves caught in a demonic beast stampede instead. Such a basic mistake would have only been made by inexperienced commanders, such that Duke Brookley wouldn’t expect to see it on the battlefield.
It was to the point that he thought that there might have been an error in the intelligence report, until another piece of news arrived.
“The one commanding the Ascarts’ army is an underaged child? Hmph. That explains the foolish maneuver,” Duke Brookley harrumphed coldly.
While he preferred to avoid fighting an overly powerful enemy, he thought that it was a humiliation for the Ascarts to send an underaged child to deal with him. In any case, it did explain the enemy’s anomalous movements.
“An inexperienced lass who only knows warfare theories on paper; it’s no wonder why she would come up with such a cretinous plan. It looks like there’s no need for us to interfere in this battle at all.”
Having come to such a conclusion, Duke Brookley couldn’t help but pity Carter’s choice of subordinates. The other commanders of the Sezes’ army also burst into laughter and mocked at how far the Ascarts had fallen.
The news swiftly spread throughout the base camp, and a light atmosphere soon permeated the Sezes’ army. The soldiers started to put down their guard as they prepared to witness the joke of the century.
Most commanders and veteran soldiers deduced that the Ascarts would soon flee from the jungle in a panic under the ferocious pursuit of the demonic beasts. Little did they know that a completely different situation was currently underway in the jungle.
In the midst of a jungle, under a pale moon, stood Alicia with an air of ethereal grace.
Her silvery hair shone with faint luminescence, and her ruby eyes carried a tinge of tenderness. She wore delicate mythril armor and a short battle skirt, which granted her ease of movement but revealed her thighs.
Despite the dark surroundings, her body appeared to be emanating faint luminosity, reminiscent of a mystical and bewitching forest fairy. At the same time, her armor gave her an air of valiance that resembled a war goddess. Divine yet enigmatic, these two vastly different dispositions appeared simultaneously on Alicia.
It was a beautiful sight, but none of the warriors accompanying her dared to spare an additional glance at her. They nervously held their breaths, fearing that they might infuriate the behemoth beneath her.
“You’re saying that you were hurt by that kind of fellow? Humans do have a short lifespan. I reckon that he has already passed away for a long time now.”
In the silent and peaceful forest, Alicia gazed at the pale moon above as she spoke as if she was chatting with someone. Under her was a colossal Eight-legged Colossal Deer, who lay openly inside a large cavern. It showed no hostility toward her, even allowing her to stroke its fur.
Half of the Eight-legged Colossal Deer’s body was hidden underground, but even the exposed part of its body was as big as a hill. Its antlers forked out like the branches of an eldritch tree, and the intense gaze of its four red eyes was more than enough to make any human tremble.
In the shadows around them, there were countless glowing beast eyes.
Emperor of Calamity.
That was what the villagers who resided by the mountainous borders called this beast that was beyond their imagination. Several centuries ago, it had terrorized countless in the Austine Empire, to the point that it was deemed as the incarnation of disaster and death. It took the coordination of many powerful knights to drive it away from the territories of the Austine Empire.
Yet, on this very day, this legendary monster who was known to have never displayed any goodwill to humans was chatting with a delicately beautiful girl under the moonlight. It left many wondering if they were dreaming.
Even the heretics who were aware of Alicia’s ability hadn’t known that she would seek help from a monster of this caliber.
Alicia stroked the Eight-legged Colossal Deer’s fur as she continued gently infusing life force into its body, all the while chatting idly with it. Silvery birds fluttered around her, and the night wind kept blowing ceaselessly. It was only till the moon had risen directly above them that she finally exhaled deeply and lifted her hand.
“That should do it.”
She gently stroked the colossal deer once more before leaping off its back and walking out of the cavern. Several moments later, the incarnation of disaster behind her slowly rose to its feet. The gaping hole in its chest that had refused to heal over the past few centuries due to the side effects of corrosive spells started swiftly closing up. At the same time, a powerful aura rippled forth from the colossal deer together with devastating mana pulsations.
The Eight-legged Colossal Deer rose to its full height, standing so tall that not even the sky-scraping ancient trees could conceal its stature. It raised its head to the sky and let out a deafening roar, inducing astonished exclamations from the soldiers.
All beings in the jungle trembled in fear.
Yet, at a silver-haired girl’s call, the commotion abruptly came to an end. The colossal deer reined in its aura and lowered its head, answering her with an intimate call.
“It’s about time for us to set off. You can think of it as a celebration for tonight,” said Alicia as she stroked the colossal deer’s neck consolingly and gazed into the distance.
In response, the Eight-legged Colossal Deer began moving.
“Hahaha! Did you hear that? Those fools of the Theocracy seem to have gotten in trouble!”
“That’s obviously a big one from the sound of it.”
The soldiers in the Sezes’ base camp merrily chatted with one another.
They had just overheard the deep roar of a ferocious beast coming from the jungle, where the Ascarts’ army had just entered not too long ago. It resounded clearly even from a far distance away. Many of the sleeping soldiers were jolted awake by the noise, though they quickly went back to sleep thinking about how foolish their enemies were.
Needless to say, the Ascarts’ army must have infuriated the owner of the jungle, an act that was synonymous with courting death. The king that ruled over this jungle was no ordinary demonic beast, but an ancient monster that had once terrorized the Austine Empire.
The sentries chatted about the legends surrounding the ‘Emperor of Calamity’ as they waited for the remnants of the Ascarts’ army to flee in panic from the jungle with torches in hand. None of them thought that the Ascarts’ soldiers would stand a chance against that terrifying monster.
They didn’t have to wait for long as specks of light started appearing by the edge of the forest shortly after—astonishingly short, in fact.
The sentries were initially perplexed given that it had only been moments since the resounding roar, but slowly, their faces started to pale. They noticed that the earth beneath them was quaking ever so slightly and that the many specks of light they had spotted in the jungle weren’t torches but the glowing eyes of demonic beasts.
A familiar roar echoed once more, but this time, it sounded clearer than ever.
Dark clouds drifted by and the silver moon made a reappearance. The head of a colossal monster rose above the jungle and gazed down on the enemies of the silver-haired girl, striking indescribable terror into the hearts of the sentries.
Feeling an intense pang of danger from his uncannily sharp intuition as a high-level transcendent, Duke Brookley rushed out from his tent and froze at the sight of the colossal monster peeking out from the forest.
It was only at this moment that he finally understood the intention of his enemies, but it was already too late. The night of demonic roars and bloodshed was already upon them.
Meanwhile, a thousand-man army was swiftly marching forward under the moonlight. A black-haired man sat on horseback with a tight frown as he recalled the war report he had received not too long ago.
“We need to hurry,” Roel murmured under his breath.
With the silhouette of a silver-haired girl in mind, he hastened the pace.