Ritox Plateau is located in the lower mountainous region of the Amon Nor Mountains, it’s a strategic location that connects the Amon Nor mountains to the Bandishia Plateau, a place that can’t be avoided if you want to cross over.
Just in case that the Rindarl army didn’t have enough information on our movements, I intentionally let the enemy scouts know we were here. It’ll be a great help if they move just as I expect, and see what I’ve prepared for them.
Thanks to Rashiok’s nose and Claudia’s eyes, we were able to detect the enemy scouts earlier, but we didn’t do anything to them on purpose. After all, we wanted them to tell their army what they saw here and bring their forces.
“Claudia, how is it?”
“Mm, there’s quite a lot of dust rising. The Rindarl army is coming! It’s going to be a battle!”
Of course, the only one who had sharp enough eyesight to see the dust clouds in the distance, was Claudia. Go back to the shonen manga world you belong in, I brushed away that thought that reflexively came up in me again, and I avoided looking at Claudia who was clearly getting excited.
The Rindarl soldiers passing by under the plateau after a long march to get here were all staring in shock at a ditch in which there was a forest of impaled people. This would be the perfect opportunity to ambush them from above with arrows while they’re in a daze, but in order to further increase the effect of their fear and hatred in the future, I waited on purpose.
I could see how shaken and confused the enemy soldiers were. Although their commanders seemed to be trying to restore order, maybe there were some captives in the ditch that the soldiers recognized, there was a surge of soldiers rushing for the ditch in a huge commotion.
Eventually the effort of their commander went to naught, as the soldiers who were probably conscripted farmers judging from their equipment broke formation entirely and starting rushing for the ditch haphazardly in a mess.
One of their knights riding on a horse with an expression like he’d given up on this rabble, was one of the first to approach the ditch.
“Arxians!! This is too cruel! It’s overboard! Do you even have chivalry, or humanity anymore!!”
I stood up and faced towards the knight. Then, from the high elevation of the plateau, I threw what was in my hand in his direction.
At first, the knight was surprised that the one who stood up was a child, but when he saw what was rolling at his feet, his complexion instantly paled.
It was the head of a young soldier. It was easy to tell from his facial characteristics and skin color that he must have been from Densel, and the head’s expression was one of dreadful fear and pain with eyes wide open in his final moments.
“What a joke, talking about humanity when you’re trying to sneak into someone’s home like a rat!”
While the knight was lost for words, I spat out some more choice words for him.
“To begin with, you rejected our terms for surrender, and you were the ones who abandoned these prisoners to their fate. This is the foolish result that you bastards have brought upon yourselves, carve it into your barbaric heads!!”
……This is no good, I’m not skilled at taunting the enemy. The fact that the captives were abandoned by their own country to their fate, even I feel that it’s rather pitiful. Since I’ve already decided that I should leave a terrifying impression in the enemies’ hearts, I really need to add more contempt to my voice so they won’t take me lightly. It seems that I don’t have the talent to become an actress.
I wonder what that knight is thinking about chivalry on the battlefield now. He just kept staring at me dumbfounded, as if his entire code of morals had been shattered, and this time I started laughing.
It seemed like he didn’t even notice the fact that the soldiers behind him were turning into a disorganized, out of control mob.
“What’s the matter, rat? You don’t feel like fighting anymore? Then, just obediently watch from where you are. From now, let me truly begin executing the Rindarl prisoners.”
I ignored him, and gave Gunther who was standing behind me the signal to begin.
The Rindarl troops that had ignored their commanding knight who was just in a daze, and rushed into the ditch, suddenly heard the command of “fire!” from above.
My soldiers suddenly stood up all at once on the plateau with the fire arrows we had prepared earlier, and all of them aimed their arrows into the ditch. It ignited the oil already smeared on the prisoners in the ditch, as well as the oil that was on the ground of the ditch as well.
Sizzle, there was an instant uprising of a wave of heat. The captives that were still alive while being impaled, and the soldiers that rushed in to save them without thinking, all of them were burned alive as screaming began to echo throughout the plateau.
……This was a reproduction of the worst scene I’ve ever beheld. Whatever the case, I judged that this would be the most effective method of planting nightmares into the enemies’ minds, so that’s why I decided to do this. Well, it’s probably even worse than what I remember my father doing, because the scale was much bigger this time.
I could feel cold sweat running down my entire body, and my knees felt like they had no strength in them. As I expected, I felt terrible. I supported myself by leaning against my halberd.
Everyone in the ditch was burning. The soldiers that didn’t rush into the ditch all seemed to be watching this spectacle.
The amount of oil I used wasn’t all that much. The roaring flames are probably going to lose their momentum soon.
Before the enemy has a chance to calm down and think, I’m going to completely break their minds – it’s time to use my other, even more rotten plan.
If the strategy I used in this battle becomes widely known, it’s probable that my father’s evil reputation will be completely replaced by my own. As expected of Orville Kaldia’s daughter, people will make sarcastic jokes about it, mixed with fear and disdain.
“Rashiok, come to me!!”
My most loyal servant, came up to me and rubbed my side.
While it was still chaotic on the ground below, the screams were indeed dying down, and I brought out the tied young captive soldiers – since soldiers are conscripted from the commoners, they have no value as prisoners at all, and Arxia was already planning to execute them anyway.
They were about my age, and in full view of the remaining Rindarl soldiers, I started pushing them down to the fire pit below.
When they fall, since they’re tied up and can’t stand, they’ll end up just rolling around in the flames. Or, maybe they’ll fall onto a stake and get impaled.
“-Stop it!! Just how rotten can you be!!”
I could hear a frenzied, angered shouting that was louder than the fire’s crackling. I instructed my archers to aim for that voice. It’s important to kill the intelligent, rational ones first. I’m going to assert my dominance over this battle from beginning to end.
I shall toy with their emotions, and I’ve brought their soldiers down to the level of a mob. Then, the defeated soldiers that survive will bring the news of what happened here back to their country, and Ergnade suggested I let eight captives go free as well to bring the news – about what I did to their captives in the name of warfare.
Below the plateau, it was a living picture of hell. It was such a strange sight to behold, and with various complicated emotions mixing about inside me, what came out of my mouth was the sound of high-pitched laughter.
End of Act 3, Part 1