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Chapter 270 – Karul Plains (1)

    Chapter 270 - Karul Plains (1)

    Karul Plains.

    It was a plains at the border between Andras and Meltor, a place where the two nations shed blood at least twice a century.

    Despite the terrain maximizing a magician's range and offense, Meltor had never managed to overcome Andras' defense. Rutben Fortress was strong enough to be called an impregnable wall.

    Moreover, Karul Plains had changed its appearance over the centuries.

    To this day, it had been pounded by hundreds of 7th circle great magic, creating bumps in the ground which weren't normally found on the flat land.

    The deeply dug land turned into canyons, and the build-up of soil became hills. The battlefield where superhumans and senior magicians gathered in the thousands had already reached the stage where nature had become twisted.

    "In that sense, maybe this is the last time was can call this place a plains," the elderly man muttered as he touched his beard.

    It had already been 50 years.

    He was currently the top of the Magic Society, but the memories of that time were as clear as day. It was the same for any magician of a similar age who had survived that battlefield. The magic and swords had clashed together, fighting fiercely to preserve their names.

    The torrential rain of fire which had fallen from the sky...

    The sticky ground that hadn't been covered in water but mud that was wet with blood...

    Deadly blades had come from all sides. The obstacles at their feet hadn't been rocks but the heads of people. The fog and clouds had been dyed red; it had been a hell where human life was trampled on like weeds.

    How many corpses were buried underneath this now peaceful looking land?

    Unable to imagine it, he couldn't help shuddering.

    "Commander." Then a middle-aged person approached the chairman of the Magic Society with some documents. "We have corrected all the inconsistencies with the terrain from the last war. It was also reported that the terrain surveying team found Andras' scouts and tried to capture them, but they failed."

    "It won't be easy to take them alive."

    "Yes. It is an old-fashioned method, but they each have a poison pill in their mouths. They all committed suicide as soon as their escape method was cut off."

    The expression of the Magic Society's chairman hardened at these words. In the dangerous areas of Karul Plains, there were two types of scouts: those brilliant enough to not get caught; and those who were worthless when caught.

    If there was an attempt to capture the scouts, the latter would swallow poison without hesitation, even if they were non-elites. This was already beyond military discipline; it was at a level that was close to madness. The soldiers of the Andras Empire were like the Janissaries of Austen.

    "...This is their determination. It is tricky."

    "Yes, it really is annoying."

    It wasn't a one-sided relationship. Just as Meltor hated the empire, Andras hated Meltor too. They had been enemies since the early days of the founding of the kingdom, so this hatred was at the instinctual level.

    "Well done, Earl Carter. Without your experience, the completion of the map would've been a few days late. It is a big achievement."

    "I just fulfilled my role." Carter, who had become an earl after his achievements in the Soldun civil war, politely received the praise. He was a war mage of the red tower who had left his mark as a veteran, so it was obvious that he would be placed on the front lines of Karul Plains.

    For Commander Benedict, chairman of the Magic Society, there was no one more competent.

    "Hmm?" At this moment, Benedict heard a ringing from an artifact. "...Hoh. 'He' has arrived. Understood. Tell all the leaders to gather in one place until I arrive, and call the troops that he will lead."

    "Commander. Who is that 'him' that you are talking about?" Earl Carter asked carefully, showing an unconcealable interest in Benedict's words.

    It was hard for Carter to hide the anticipation in his eyes.

    Benedict laughed and gave an answer that fulfilled those expectations, "The hero has arrived."

    It was the arrival of the kingdom's hero, Theodore Miller.

    *     *     *

    Shortly after arriving at Karul Plains, Theodore was guided to the commander's barracks and saw several familiar faces.

    The most surprising among them was the commander's face.

    "Chairman?"

    "It has been a long time since I've seen your face, Captain." Benedict, the head of the Magic Society at the center of the magic towers, was looking at Theodore from the main seat.

    Theodore was amazed as he quickly interpreted this situation. The fact that the chairman called him 'captain' instead of 'prime' meant that he hadn't come here as a magician. It meant the chairman was the commander of Meltor's army.

    Theodore finished thinking and politely saluted him, "Yes. It has been a while, Commander."

    "Hrmm." His judgment was right. Benedict shook his head and spoke to the leaders sitting around them, "I don't need to introduce him, but this is Quattro's captain, Marquis Theodore Miller. There are a few people here who know him, but let's leave the small talk to later."

    The old man spoke sternly, refusing to show the excitement in his voice. At a glance, it could be seen that Theodore was an excellent magician. Magic power was overflowing from his trained body, and it was unknown if the people gathered here could overcome it. How had he reached this level at his age?

    "It is good to see you, Captain Theodore. When I heard that you were only three days away, I couldn't help rejoicing. You can blame my incompetence."

    "No. Please use me fully."

    "Huhu, you are so modest. I'm sorry if this doesn't meet your expectations, but we have already decided on your position."

    "That is...?"

    Theodore's position was already determined...? Theodore himself was stunned, while Benedict and the other leaders nodded with a smile. Then Benedict pushed a piece of paper toward Theodore and said, "Read it slowly."

    "Yes..." Theodore received it with a questioning face and started to read the paper.

    Then his eyes widened. "Commander, this is..."

    Theodore didn't know the army's formation, but he couldn't help responding to the contents.

    [ Quattro's Captain, Theodore Miller will be given sole command of a unit composed of up to 50 people. The candidates will be recruited from Quattro, the war mages, or the magic towers, and the members will be organized according to Theodore Miller. Additionally, Theodore Miller has the right to override the commander, Benedict Alpen's orders. ]

    It meant that Theodore had the power to command a single unit at his disposal. He could even ignore the commander's orders!

    Theodore was at a loss for words.

    However, Benedict just spoke like it was nothing. "There is no precedent to this, but don't think too much about it. We have come to the conclusion that a master's power isn't efficient when used in a non-flexible formation."

    "But..."

    "It is the same as the Red Tower Master. Her combat power and maneuverability are too good to be held back by the army. Of course, I can't allow you to wander around alone like her, so I thought of this."

    The power of a master, which could surpass 100 soldiers, was a military strength. A master could overturn the flow of the battlefield with a single gesture.

    Thus, it was more efficient to leave it to their own discretion, rather than fit them into the army. Just like how a sword master hid in the melee for assassination opportunities, Meltor controlled the battlefield with magicians that could appear anywhere.

    Moreover, Theodore and the war mages were the wild cards of Karul Plains.

    "Also, Earl Carter."

    "Yes, Commander." Carter stepped forward at Benedict's call.

    "If you don't mind, I would like to recommend him as your assistant, as long as you don't have someone you've thought of beforehand."

    "I'm sorry."

    It was true that an active veteran would be helpful, but Theodore refused the offer without hesitation. However, it wasn't because he didn't like Earl Carter. Benedict read Theodore's expression and asked him, "Do you have someone in mind?"

    "Yes."

    "Can you tell me who?"

    "This..."

    It was a bit difficult, so Theodore whispered the answer only to Benedict.

    "―Hrmm." As the head of the Magic Society, Benedict didn't utter any surprised words. He just closed his mouth with an unpleasant expression. A person who didn't know the situation would be deceived. Theodore admired him inwardly, while Benedict spoke to Earl Carter in an uncomfortable manner.

    "Well, I understand. Earl Carter will guide you to the people you will be commanding. A full-scale operational meeting will begin tomorrow."

    "Yes. Thank you, Commander." Theodore accepted the command and left the barrack. Earl Carter followed hurriedly behind him, while the barrack seemed bleaker than before.

    Theodore had refused to accept the commander's favor, and Benedict had a careful expression on his face...

    However, unlike his outward appearance, Benedict was pleased. Indeed, Benedict was forced to accept it if it was 'him.'

    'It doesn't matter how brilliant Earl Carter is compared to him. Well, yes. The imperial army will properly become mad.'

    Benedict, the chairman of the Magic Society, laughed because he hadn't expected something so interesting. This absolutely wouldn't do any harm to Meltor. That's why he was convinced by Theodore's decision.
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