Chapter 4) Battle of Sisley Castle
While Weed was concentrating on hunting, time pa.s.sed and the war between the Hermes Guild and Cloud Guild expanded.
It was a struggle that mobilized the full capacity of both guilds! The Hermes Guild contained the largest number of users and there were more high level users than the Cloud Guild. The soldiers of the Haven Kingdom were better trained than the Britten Alliance Kingdom and they had attacked violently in the early stages.
However many soldiers were needed to control an occupied area.
The current prosperity the Cloud Guild enjoyed wasn’t just due to luck. They hired powerful mercenaries and guilds into an alliance with them to counterattack!
The Hermes Guild recorded their first defeat and the war became increasingly more intense. Grain fields were trampled by cavalry and villages were reduced to ashes.
The Hermes Guild and Cloud Guild fought on a large and small scale every day for pieces of land. The military of both sides was going to gather at Sisley Castle, an important place for military affairs and traffic in the Britten Alliance Kingdom.
If the Hermes Guild managed to make it surrender then 3 free cities would become their property. The Cloud Guild needed to use everything in their power to maintain it. The Hermes Guild concentrated their troops here in order to make a decisive move. Victory or defeat could be decided by Sisley Castle so the broadcasting stations decided to do a live relay. It would decide the fate of the two kingdoms so the users of Royal Road had a lot of interest.
Weed also heard information about it from Pale’s party.
The balance of power on the Versailles Continent would change on this day.
“Shall we drink a beer in a Morata tavern and watch Weed-nim?”
Pale asked him that the other day.
“Let’s play together, yes?”
So far Weed had been busy in the dungeons while the Hermes Guild was waging their war. It wasn’t strange for him to spend a whole day at a dungeon.
Weed asked Pale.
“Is the one who won Sisley Castle likely to win the whole war?”
“Yes. Maylon says that the scale of this battle is too large for the side that loses to recover. If the Cloud Guild wins then they will recover their lost territory and can increase their influence in the Lasalle Kingdom.”
“If the Hermes Guild wins?”
“There is a high possibility that the Hermes Guild will win and then it will only be a matter of time until they eat the Britten Alliance Kingdom. That’s why the Cloud Guild has rallied all their troops. This is the key for victory so it is rather significant.”
A user would revive again one day after they died. But many of the high level users would lose a lot so they had a large fear of death. If a guild was defeated in a battle then they needed to psychologically recover in order to fight back.
Users could revive but the NPC troops would be wiped out. A lot of time and money was needed in order to purchase recruitment and training for wars. If the soldiers and knights died at the battle for Sisley Castle then it would be impossible to restore the damage short term.
Hwaryeong quietly showed her charm.
“Weed-nim, I’ll see you at the tavern. I’ll be bringing a fried chicken.”
Watching a crystal ball while having fried chicken and beer was the best feeling. People always gathered at taverns on days where important broadcasts about Royal Road were shown.
Weed shook his head.
“I don’t think the taverns are available.”
Hwaryeong was disappointed. She regretted not being able to get a good night’s sleep!
One of the pleasures of Royal Road was to watch a battle in a city like Morata. In particular, many people liked relieving stress by cursing or saying bad things about the Hermes Guild.
Weed had a different plan.
“Many people will be gathered in the vicinity of Sisley Castle… Let’s go there and sell roasted chicken and squid.”
Hwaryeong’s eyes flashed at his words.
The facial expressions of Pale, Surka, Zephyr, Romuna and Bellot also changed. It was better to see the battle from a close place than through a crystal ball. They could ride the wyverns but it was convenient to use Yurin’s Picture Teleportation skill.
Besides the beautiful Luka River, a battle was occurring at Sisley Castle.
The Hermes Guild marched with a surprisingly large number of 310,000 troops.
Sisley Castle was a core military hub of the Britten Alliance Kingdom so many war preparations revolved around it.
There were broad plains for fighting in front of Sisley Castle but the Cloud Guild had firmly closed the gates. They decided to wait for the support army from Bermer to arrive. If the relief army arrived in the middle of the siege then it was possible to pincer attack the Hermes Guild.
“I have squids. Merchant Yanson absolutely won’t lie about the quant.i.ty.”
“Cool drinks, wine and beer for sale! The quant.i.ty is limited so hurry.”
Spectators were on the hill overlooking Sisley Castle. This was a safe place to watch the war and they wouldn’t become involved if it spread to other areas of the Britten Alliance Kingdom. It was like people rus.h.i.+ng to watch when a house caught on fire.
Weed’s compet.i.tors had also come to engage in business.
“There is still room for trading.”
Weed had prepared carriages full of squid, peanuts, popcorn, whole chicken, beer and alcohol. He received a delivery directly from Mapan in the Britten Alliance Kingdom. There were enough ingredients to fill three carriages!
It was possible for him to earn money and to raise his cooking skill proficiency.
“Now, look at this torn chicken leg. I won’t speak for a long time. 9 gold!”
This was an expensive strategy to differentiate himself from the surrounding people! He chose to sell delicious food at a more expensive price than other people in order to get a larger benefit. The high price would raise people’s expectations and curiosity to eat it.
“Where is this smell coming from?”
“It is being sold over there. Shall we buy it to try?”
Weed waited for the war while engaged in business. There was an explosive atmosphere inside Sisley Castle’s walls. It was an atmosphere like arrows could go flying at any time!
Hwaryeong, Bellot and Surka also arrived. They had come to the area in advance and set a time to connect.
“Kyah… How interesting.”
“I think it is rare to see a battle like this.”
“Yes. I don’t know when the next time will come again.”
They tried to do some war sightseeing but Weed rallied them to help with his cooking.
“Well I would appreciate the help. Here is an ap.r.o.n.”
Weed had even prepared the correct number of ap.r.o.ns beforehand. It was often difficult for cooks to engage in business in front of the battlefield.
“Mister, when will the chicken wings be ready?”
Guests continuously made a line in front of Weed.
“Chicken wings are now 11 gold.”
“Why did you increase the price?”
“It is selling well. If you don’t like it then go somewhere else!”
“Thank you for the compliment.”
This was the face of a vicious merchant! He engaged in a brisk business as the war continued. There were many people who came to see the war between kingdoms so the high food price wasn’t a big problem.
Weed roasted fried chicken and recycled the oil. A procedure was needed because some customers were looking. He used the strategy of pouring another oil while quickly gathering the old oil!
Weed’s cooking skill was so high that everyone was too busy eating to notice his secret.
‘I will use it even if it is oil made last year.’
Pure animal lard. He was recycling it but there were no problems with his dishes.
Of course, his skill proficiency wouldn’t grow that much just making fried chicken. If Weed cooked for himself then he wouldn’t use the bad oil. While feeding families the minimum of good food, a restaurant business couldn’t worry about their conscience!
“Come come! This is lightly roasted chicken and is also good for your health. The ingredients will soon run out so please order quickly!”
Weed was engaged in business while the suitable place to see Sisley Castle was overflowing with spectators.
The Hermes Guild were oppressive in other areas but they were generous about battle sightseeing. It was a strategy to induce fear by allowing people to watch their army.
“I never get tired of watching the Hermes Guild fight. They really have an extravagant military.”
“Ah, there is the giant Knight Boemong.”
Knight Boemong symbolized the armed forces of the Hermes Guild. He was a member of Bardray’s Royal Guards and his items indicated that he was over level 440. He was a barbarian so his body was superior to other knights. He was much bigger than other knights so he easily stood out in a suit of armour.
Weed sold water to customers while nodding.
“He definitely looks strong. His equipment is also the best. I should quietly dispose of him if I meet him in a back alley.”
The Hermes Guild split their power and advanced towards Sisley Castle from two directions. Bardray commanded the troops that would cross the Luka River to intercept the relief army from the Cloud Guild.
Beomong took the mission of using siege weapons to capture Sisley Castle. He was a knight who didn’t know how to wait patiently.
“Attack, all knights! Destroy the enemy who is resisting the Haven Kingdom’s unification of the continent!”
The Hermes Guild launched an all-out attack!
“Wah, the war is starting.”
“It is getting exciting.”
Wheeled siege weapons moved forward as magic attacks flew towards them. There was black smoke coming from the tail of a fireball, ice spears, earth in the shape of a monster etc.
The Hermes Guild was expecting this so their magicians used protection magic around the siege weapons. Barriers made of wind, water or air were placed in front of the siege weapons.
The head-on collision of attack and defense magic! Fireworks unfolded in the sky as the land shook and there was a deafening roar. Some protective barriers were shattered and the siege weapons smashed apart.
The grandeur of a magic battle!
Taking into account the damage, the Hermes Guild still had 220 siege weapons mobilized. They had brought all the siege weapons that hadn’t been used when attacking the Lasalle Kingdom here. It was essential to break the castle walls quickly so that the magic attacks would stop.
“Completely destroy the castle. Launch!”
The siege weapons fired large steel arrows towards Sisley Castle. In this situation, the magic defense was unable to intercept it and Sisley Castle’s guard towers and castle walls were struck. As time pa.s.sed, the beautiful scenery of Sisley Castle and Luka River turned tragic as the walls crumbled from the siege weapons.
Weed’s business also worsened because the spectators were distracted by the battle. The siege continued for 30 minutes then 1 hour until the flow of time was forgotten. But although the siege weapons’ destructive power was strong, their durability was weak. The siege weapons started to break down after being used a few times.
There was the long sound of a horn. The military of Haven Kingdom moved forward. The sky was covered with arrows as Sisley Castle fired. The Hermes Guild marched towards the gates while destroying monsters along the way.
“Let’s go! Kill everyone!”
“For the glory of the Haven Kingdom!”
“Fight against the enemy of His Majesty King Bardray!”
The Haven Kingdom ran to the walls despite suffering arrow damage. They used a rope ladder to try and climb the walls. The high defensive walls meant the defense could fight in an advantageous position. The Hermes Guild chose the straightforward strategy of overwhelming with numbers despite taking significant damage.
The Hermes Guild users earnestly attacked and magic flew relentlessly. There were level 300s and 400s on the battlefield so there were many deaths as users duelled.
“There are many dying.”
Weed was satisfied watching the battlefield after the customers became spa.r.s.e.
Users that were the people’s icon in rural villages were behind the walls but unfortunately they also died from the siege weapons. In the past, users who were performers really struggled but there was now a large popularity among the population due to Morata. These days users were recognized as the powerhouses on the Versailles Continent. Weed could now see these users dying in this war.
“This is a good thing.”
They were bleeding each other in this war. It was okay for the winning side but the losing side would perish.
“Kyaah! Did you see that magic just now?”
“Yes. Hundreds of people were swallowed by a whirlwind of fire.”
“This is really a jackpot.”
“The big dust on the other side…..”
“There is something over there.”
The people watching from the hill could feel the excitement of the battlefield. A war wasn’t good from the position of the general users but there was something about the sight that made their chests pound.
The Haven Kingdom army marched across the plains through arrows and magic attacks. A battle spread underneath Sisley Castle as soldiers crept up the castle wall.
“Put out the fire!”
“Fight against the enemies. Don’t permit anyone to escape.”
Fire occurred due to magic and elementals but the Haven Kingdom put out the flames so violently that they never spread.
“It would be nice if everyone dies…..”
While Weed eagerly watched the fight, the Haven Kingdom blew the horn. The troops that were flocking towards the walls stopped in place. The battle on the walls was still going on but the reinforcements suddenly stopped.
“Why are they doing this when they’re having trouble capturing the walls?”
The onlookers couldn’t help but find it strange. The walls of Sisley Castle were high and thick so it was impossible to easily capture it. However the Haven Kingdom army was too strong to give up so easily.
“There is something.”
Weed sensed that something wasn’t ordinary.
Then a person wearing a black robe from the Hermes Guild walked forward.
The necromancer that a.s.sisted Bardray at Melbourne Mine! Presently Krobidyun could even summon the difficult Doom Knight. The Hermes Guild helped by giving unusual items and excellent hunting grounds. Krobidyun rose from the middle place to a high rank thanks to his skill as a necromancer. He put quite a lot of effort into changing cla.s.ses from a magician to a necromancer.
Krobidyun’s eerie voice spread through the battlefield.
“Rise. Come back to the land you used to live in. This is a dark place. It is a black and corrupt land. Help spread the laws of darkness. Undead Rise!”
A battle had spread in front of Sisley Castle. The corpses of the high level users stiffened and they become the undead. Quite a few skeletons rose. The quality of the corpses was good so a crowd of zombies walked forward with a crowd of flies around them.
The undead marched underneath Sisley Castle.
Meanwhile the Hermes Guild who had been repairing their siege weapons started firing them again.
The undead were hit by Sisley Castle’s defences but kept on attacking. The power of the undead was that they could bear through any attack without collapsing in order to take the walls.
Weed felt his blood boil.
“If I was there… How unfortunate.”
Hermes and Cloud Guild!
They were prestigious guilds on the continent and users would flock to both sides after only hearing the names. There were many main characters of adventures mixed in among the fighting. But Weed was able to calmly grasp their abilities.
“If I was fighting there….”
Sculpture Transformation would be indispensable. A chaos warrior would be strong but a necromancer would also be good. If he wore Barkhan’s full set then he could raise an unlimited number of corpses! The dark aura would also strengthen the undead. This would wreak absolute havoc in a war.
The Copper Plate of Eternal Rest would strengthen the undead but it only had 1 durability left. He had also gained a lot of battle experience as a necromancer while partic.i.p.ating in the Barkhan Immortal Legion quest. Sculpture Transformation and the Power to Reject Death meant there wasn’t a necromancer stronger than Weed on the continent.
“This really stirs my interest.”
He wouldn’t be hurt no matter how many regular soldiers were present. Priests who could use holy power or mithril weapons would be a problem but he could tell Bahamorg to protect him. Then a true necromancer’s battle would occur.
While Weed had an intense look, the users watching the Sisley Castle battle became enthusiastic.
“I have to sell chicken legs.”
It was inconvenient but he couldn’t leave for the battlefield. His hands and feet became itchy as he watched the fight.
As Krobidyun endlessly summoned undead without anyone restricting him, they continued repairing and launching the siege weapons!
Sisley Castle was forced to waste their arrows that were precious resources and the magicians and priests consumed their mana.
Krobidyun was a great magician that reached level 449.
He absorbed the health and mana of wounded soldiers. Many undead were destroyed due to the defense striking back. But there were many bodies strewn on the ground.
The Haven Kingdom had no doubt that the defenders would eventually become tired. The siege weapons targeting Sisley Castle was the large problem for the Cloud Guild. There was also Krobidyun who demonstrated the terrible power of a necromancer.
“This reminds me of when Weed-nim fought against the Bone Dragon.”
“It seems so. It was also brought to an end like this.”
The crowd was having similar thoughts. It was the battle where Weed played an active role as a necromancer.
Finally the gates were opened and troops rushed out in order to break the siege weapons. The knights were at the front with the infantry in the rear.
“Let’s go. We will defend the Britten Alliance Kingdom.”
“We will break the Haven Kingdom’s ambition here. We can’t afford to hand them even one bit of land!”
The infantry marched in unison but they already seemed that they were on the verge of defeat. It was because they hadn’t done any damage to the Haven Kingdom so far. The various battles were too easy from the viewpoint of the Hermes Guild. They hadn’t even moved their knight corps.
“Change the goal and beat them!”
The defense army charged towards the siege weapons firing at Sisley Castle.
“Now smash the siege weapons!”
The knights had been kept back at the expense of the infantry so the Hermes Guild had obviously expected this tactic.
Many preparations had been arranged before the attack on Sisley Castle. Right now the enemy’s response was within the Hermes Guild’s expectations.
The waiting magic and attack from the Hermes Guild harmed the advancing knights. While the defense line broke through by force and destroyed half the siege weapons, their retreat was blocked off and the knights defeated!
A considerable portion of the troops and walls were destroyed before a white flag was flown from Sisley Castle. A famous fortress on the continent was occupied in only one day.
The Hermes Guild used a brutal approach to any opposition within the territory. After the gates were destroyed and the military entered, the defenders and any residents who didn’t give up were killed. Even general users were stabbed to death!
Rumours of the Hermes Guild’s cruelty went around and the residents’ morale and loyalty became extremely low. The Hermes Guild was infamous so there would be many adverse problems with internal affairs in occupied areas. But there was a profitable area to the war process.
“We should leave Sisley Castle before evening.”
“It will take a long time for the entire Haven Kingdom army to enter.”
“Look at the land that is near the collapsed walls. That is a really reckless attack power.”
“The rich really are different. Bringing that many expensive siege weapons…..”
The spectators watching the battle were simultaneously admiring and aghast. The potential of the Hermes Guild was once again recognized.
“There is news that Bardray’s troops have destroyed the Cloud Guild’s reinforcements.”
“Doing so much damage to the Cloud Guild is really amazing.”
The Hermes Guild occupied Sisley Castle and received the 3 free cities.
A free city was the base of trade and production so it possessed a vast population. The influence of the Cloud Guild in the Britten Alliance Kingdom reduced and the Hermes Guild took their spot.
The Hermes Guild made a proclamation a few days later.
The Haven Kingdom, Kallamore Kingdom, Lasalle Kingdom and the Britten Alliance Kingdom would be the start of the Haven Empire. The territory, population, economic power and external influence were sufficient to call it an empire. The Haven Kingdom would act as the centre under the lead of the Hermes Guild.
“Ah, I really don’t like it.”
“Bad luck is dripping.”
“The chewed meat doesn’t taste good.”
There were many who didn’t like the news from the Hermes Guild. The entire continent was becoming overrun by the Haven Kingdom. They were also jealous that an empire had appeared.
In addition, the guild leader Lafaye had announced that they would be stopping the war.
The peace-loving Hermes Guild has the Lasalle Kingdom threatened by the Embinyu Church so the future is unknown.
We have made the difficult decision to stop the conflict and stabilize the Lasalle Kingdom. When looking closely, there are many users in the Lasalle Kingdom who have gone through much suffering.
We also needed to correct the large number of evil deeds the Cloud Guild committed in the Britten Alliance Kingdom.
But the Hermes Guild halting the war just increased insecurity and discomfort. The Hermes Guild didn’t make a promise that they would stop trying to secure territory.
And the Haven Empire would aggressively act to prevent confusion from spreading in the Lasalle Kingdom. The free cities and castles in the Britten Alliance Kingdom were occupied so managing them would cause further prosperity.
It was an unexpected victory declaration!
Even the Cloud Guild was puzzled about the reason. They had a relations.h.i.+p that could be expressed as enemies. The Hermes Guild had only won 1/3rd of the Britten Alliance Kingdom yet they stopped their war.
Anyway, now peace had come so many users in the Britten Alliance Kingdom welcomed it.
Yoo Byung-jin drank hot chocolate and watched the Hermes Guild’s announcement on the monitor. And he really admired Lafaye.
“The Lasalle Kingdom and Britten Alliance Kingdom are prey that is too large to eat. They are bound to over-eat. Even if they achieve victory, it won’t be easy to exert control over it.”
Their scheme was to take a delicious bite of the Britten Alliance Kingdom! If they occupied everything then the Hermes Guild’s territory would become too wide. Rebel and resistance armies would run wild and internal affairs would become difficult. The declaration and unexpected end to the aggressive war made other powers feel a sense of crisis and they would prepare sensitive measures.
Of course, there were simple people who believed the Hermes Guild’s announcement but many more doubted it. They wouldn’t end the war of aggression because of the Embinyu Church or other excuses.
The compet.i.tors were cautious of the Hermes Guild’s ability. But it was effective on them.
A huge guild tried to stomp out the fire and ended up disappearing in vain. They needed to make sacrifices in order to prevent the Hermes Guild from expanding its empire.
Meanwhile the Hermes Guild would use the time to strengthen and train their armed forces in the Lasalle Kingdom and the free cities. They also secretly expanded their conquest war in the Tullen Kingdom through the Beden Guild. The Hermes Guild already had one foot in the Britten Alliance Kingdom so their influence would gradually spread.
Not only did the war bring in territory, it also brought quite a few high level users. The Cloud Guild lost ma.s.sive amounts of territory so they couldn’t be one of the prestigious guilds anymore. It was possible for the Hermes Guild to absorb some users from the weakened guild.
The Hermes Guild had a large greed so they really collected many things in a short amount of time.
“That person is very smart. He knew it wouldn’t be easy to control so he backed down. He really is greedy.”
The military in the Haven and Kallamore Kingdoms were still continuing their training. If the present situation and preparations were examined, it was clear they planned to expand to the whole continent. When they were ready then they would declare war and no one would be able to stop the Hermes Guild.
Yoo Byung-jin remembered Weed every time he drank hot chocolate.
The G.o.d of War. He was a legend in Royal Road and the people’s hero. But the situation around Weed was rapidly deteriorating. The Hermes Guild’s powerful army of well trained and high level users was going to take over the entire continent.
An astronomical amount of power would be given to the first emperor who unified the entire continent. This was a promise from Unicorn Corporation and what Bardray and the Hermes Guild were aiming for.
Yoo Byung-jin played a large role in the continent being devastated by war.
“How far can they go? They will either climb up the cliff or be forced to quit. The Hermes Guild and the Embinyu Church is becoming increasingly bigger. The continent’s history will change depending on who wins.”