TL: Alright guys, that’s the last chapter. I’ll see you next wednesday (unless there are any donated chapters).
Chapter 104 – Lure (3)
At the same time Aakkin planned his maleficence, Conrad and the Dark Bishop were observing the new Lizardman who came in. But what made them feel wrong with this scene before them was how the Lizardmen’s faces all looked the same. At least from their point of view, the ‘lizard’ who came in earlier did not look any different from this ‘lizard’.
Perhaps their patterns on the skin were different?
Hewjil recognized his subordinate and asked in his own native tongue: “Aakkin, you came back earlier than I expected. Why, did you find your targets?”
“Yes, chief.” Aakkin answered with a stuttering chatter.
His attitude did not draw Hewjil’s suspicion as he wanted deference from his subordinates, but he was a little annoyed at Aakkin’s behavior. He waved his hand and replied: “When did you become inarticulate, Aakkin? If you have anything you want to report, just spit it out. What else did you see?”
“My men and I were attacked in the southern area.” Aakkin gulped as he continued to chatter. “The people who attacked us seemed to be the men we are supposed to look for. There are fifteen of them, two female, and a youth who is leading twelve guards. They are really formidable, and before we could react…… four of our brothers…..”
“The south?” Hewjil answered blankly, as if he did not hear the loss of men: “Are you sure it’s the south?”
Aakkin was also in a daze as he thought his chief would go into a rage. But he quickly recovered and nodded.
“What did he say?” Conrad had no more patience when he heard them talk in their native language. When Hewjil raised his voice, he knew something was up and immediately grabbed his shoulder and asked.
Hewjil smacked away his hand and yelled out: “This time, in the south region. Conrad, your foes, they playing hide and seek with us?”
“They are appearing in the east, south and southwest.” The Dark Bishop was thoughtful: “This goes against common sense, there has to be a scheme somewhere.”
“Damned your scheme,” Hewjil growled loudly: “The situation, simple. Enemies discovered where we are, that shitfaced youth you sent to bite them, is definitely killed already. They are escaping to the south! In three separate routes! They are dividing focus, I have seen enough of these ploys!”
“Impossible!” The Dark Bishop nearly jumped out from his chair: “That fool went with my acolyte,” He grabbed a crystal out from his robes with his bony fingers: “This crystal has not cracked, which means my acolyte is still fine!”
“Then your, foolish acolyte lost her way.” Hewjil spat his words out coldly with sarcasm dripping in his voice.
“An acolyte of the Gods losing her way? Have your brains rotted, you witless lizard!” Conrad interrupted Hewjil and blocked the Dark Bishop from attacking the latter with his arm. He roared at the Dark Bishop: “Why are you losing your temper! That lizard is right in saying that the enemies have discovered our intentions. They won’t break through the north any longer and they are sure to retreat. We can’t wait for them here any longer.”
“Then what should we do?” The Dark Bishop asked after looking blankly at Conrad for a while.
“Of course we need to chase them.”
“Into which direction?” Hewjil snapped.
Conrad gave him a piercing look and answered in a tone void of warmth: “Are you truly brainless? Are there only three of us here? What about your men, you imbecile, of course we’re going to divide our forces into three separate directions. Are you afraid that a mere ten odd Silver-ranked guards defeating our forces?”
Hewjil’s mouth opened, but found his voice dying in his throat as he discovered the damned human was right. His tone was slightly deflated as he asked: “Then when do we set out?”
“Of course we should set out right now!” Conrad said.
“No, this time we need to be cautious.” The Dark Bishop stopped him: “When my men are here to rejoin me, we can set out in the night.”
“You’re too cautious. By the time we set out, they will be way ahead of us.” Conrad grumbled, although he also shared the same concern of a trap when he heard the reports from the Lizardmen.
Hewjil merely reminded them: “Do not forget, half of the promised rewards, are mine.”
The two men glowered at him in disgust. The three figures did not pay attention to Aakkin who was secretly relieved.
[What did that terrifying wizard say? If I am not dead when the moon is up, my soul is returned to my body?] Aakkin’s heart was pounding and he shivered. Would that cunning wizard keep his promise?
Night quickly arrived. Conrad and Hewjil’s men acted first. Hundreds of fire torches could be spotted near the Elven ruins. This gathering of Lizardmen was highly unusual and complicated, especially when they had no notion of gathering as a unit before. Grouping them up and dividing them into separate forces was a huge task.
After an hour later, another long snaking group entered the ruins from the west, and they carried fire torches with them as well, with the gathered torches lighting up the entire area with a fiery red hue.
At this moment, four shadows were waiting at the top of a nearby hill—
“The disciples have gathered.” Countless lights were reflected in Brendel’s eyes as he spoke.
“So are Conrad’s men.” Sanford chimed in.
“Are you sure they will divide their forces into three, my lord?” Sanford turned to him and asked: “What happens if they see through our scheme and concentrate their forces?”
“There is no ‘if’ here.” Brendel firmly said. If he was fighting against Madara’s talented commanders, his tricks would not work, but he was facing a bunch of Lizardmen bandits and mercenaries. Based on their quality, they would never be able to guess what he planned to do. One clear advantage he had was knowing how much men they had, while they only knew that he had twelve guards with him.
Under this situation, none of the enemy commanders would even consider that he had an additional squadron of Silver Elves and that he planned to consume them as experience points. Even if Brendel went up to them and personally told them he was going to wipe out this thousand odd Lizardmen bandits, they would think he had lost his mind.
Brendel was quiet for a moment before he replied: “Even the worst outcome now would be the enemy forces gathering into one direction, but we are already here and ready to exploit our tactical advantage. Know this well, they are the hunters and we are the prey. In this hunt, the party that decides where the battle would be, is the prey and not the hunters.”
Sanford nodded as he listened quietly.
The Elven commander stood there quietly. At this distance away from the Altar, he felt a great limitation on his strength, and he did not see any better than Brendel did. The last person that stood behind them was Romaine.
She saw much more than the others did when she looked at the field of fire torches. These lights appeared like stars gathering in the darkness to form a painting, and she thought it was truly beautiful.
Very soon, the fire torches started to spread out and reform into three straight lines.
“You were right, my lord!” Sanford’s eyes brightened up and he exclaimed excitedly, but his expression quickly darkened as he saw an image of Makarov’s confident figure on Brendel’s back. In the Grey Wolves Mercenaries’ hearts, the person who always had the means to lead them with victory was Makarov, but now it was proven that was merely their wishful thinking.
Brendel’s reactions were not as unsteady as Sanford. The curtains on this play had just been lifted and about to begin. He pointed towards the front of the fire torches: “Romaine, are you able to see the appearances of the leaders?”
Sanford and the Elven commander were startled. How was she able to see that far? They were approximately four kilometers away from the enemies, and the fire torches were about as bright as a firefly, and it was quite impossible for them to even see the figure carrying the torches.
They suddenly realized that the girl who came with them was not an ordinary person as she nodded immediately: “Of course I can! Hmm……. The one of the left looks like a lizard.”
“That’s the commander of the Lizardmen, Hewjil. Continue.” Brendel was confident of her abilities. She was able to spot the Madara army at Fortress Riedon even when the night sky had no starlight or moonlight. In this clear night, along with the fire torches, she definitely found it easy to see what they looked like.
“The leader of the center group seems to be a human. He’s a young man wearing leather armor….. And there seems to be something strange following next to him.” Romaine carefully described what it looked like, and Brendel replied: “That’s Conrad and the Earth Bishop. Strange, if those two are together, then who is leading the third group?” (TL: I’ll see what happens in the future when Brendel encounters the ‘Dark Bishop’ and ‘Earth Bishop’. Currently I’m using Bishop because I don’t know what the appearances of the bosses are, but I might change it to Avatar of Earth [name?] and Avatar of Lightning [Scarlett] in the future to differentiate them.)
She nodded and her gaze moved over to the third group and described what she saw.
“It looks like the figure is wearing a black long robe with several red stripes on the side? I can’t see anything further than that.”
Brendel took a while to think about it: “Hmm…… It’s a Dark Bishop. That means that bastard Redi was talking about him and not the Earth Bishop. The one who cursed Scarlett should be him, but judging from the strength of the curse, he isn’t one of the higher ranked members of the Tree Shepherd.”
“My lord, do we stick to the plan?” Sanford asked with concern in his voice.
[This is a problem. The plan was to kill off the Earth Bishop alone, but if that boss is moving with Conrad then the entire battle would be extremely tough. The worst outcome is letting both of them flee without being able to stop them. This level 50 boss is the rough equivalent of a level 65 creature, and against the weakened level 35-40 Silver Elves…… With another Gold-ranked fighter like Conrad, trying to get both of them would be difficult. Luring them into a trap will obviously work only once, and they won’t repeat their mistakes…..]
Brendel rubbed his forehead. He needed to gain the best results from this trap. He agonized over the situation for a while, should he kill the Lizardmen or the Dark Bishop?
[Wait, the Dark Bishop? Holy shit! Dark Bishop?! Isn’t he a dark elementalist? I should smack myself for being an idiot. Killing him would mean I can get dark elemental crystals, and heck, the Dark Bishops are famous for dropping nothing but crystals. Even the gamers called them one of the poorest mob creatures around.]
Brendel’s mind was used to think about the overall picture, and actually forgot that he could really use some dark elemental crystals. (TL: To summon Medissa, in case anyone is wondering.)
Once he thought about it, his mind seemed to clear up and even predicted how the future events would flow. If the Dark Bishop died, the Blood of Gods in Scarlett’s body would also be suppressed because of the lack of control, and he would gain another powerful Gold-ranked fighter.
He clapped his hands and said: “No, we’re not retreating. I want to go after the Dark Bishop now.”
Everyone did not understand why he changed his mind so easily.
Brendel patted the stolen Lizardman’s mount and made the beast turn its body. He smiled with embarrassment: “It’s common to change a plan when there are unforeseen circumstances. Don’t worry, this doesn’t affect things. In any case, we should return to our ambush location, I don’t want to get caught in a battle here.”