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Zelle set off on the third mission.
Valhayle explained a detour route around the Granoir camp this time as well.
Because the Granoir army also relocated often, Zelle had to know exactly where the enemy troops were.
As she soared, she thought about the thing that didn’t leave her mind since last night.
‘There will be a battle.’
Valhayle didn’t explicitly say it, but she could tell.
It seemed to be an important battle that would decide the fate of the 40,000 Roheneim men.
When Valhayle was in the military tactic meeting, Zelle was in pointless training with the soldier in charge of messenger birds so she couldn’t hear the details of the battle.
I know one thing.
Zelle’s eye focused on the Black Defense Wall in the far distance.
If we win, we will be able to give a proper burial for the 3rd princess.
Zelle thought about her 3rd eldest sister who would be hanging on the wall right now.
Zelle’s 3rd eldest sister was the most beautiful daughter out of the 4 princesses. At least, that was what Zelle thought.
She was born around the same time as her 2nd eldest sister, Demiera, so she was on good terms with the 1st and 2nd princess.
Even if Linbessy succeeded the throne, the 3rd princess would have lived.
That was why Zelle was always envious of her.
The ironic thing here was that she too was envious of Zelle. She despised Zelle yet at the same time she was jealous.
Zelle didn’t care what her 3rd eldest sister was jealous about.
The only thing she cared about was survival.
So, Zelle ran and hid from the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd princess whenever they were threatening.
That was the only thing close to a ‘memory’ she had with her 3rd eldest sister.
In retrospect, it seemed like the 3rd princess had the same feeling toward her own twin younger brother as well.
Sickly contempt and jealousy.
Her eyes were as beautiful as precious gemstones but they also scorched like hellfire.
But the glow in her eyes was now gone and her cold body was being used as a mere tool to provoke Roheneim and Voymont.
Although Zelle had never loved her 3rd eldest sister, she was still enraged by her death.
The 3rd princess was betrothed to one of the nobles of Voymont. Zelle didn’t know if she loved her fiance and she will never know now.
But the blood draining from her 3rd eldest sister was the blood of Roymonde.
The royal blood had huge significance in Roymonde. It was like a tie that bound the three militaries and royalty together.
And Granoir hung her body on the Black Wall like some kind of display.
Their message was clear.
Roymonde, the link holding you has now been cut.
Zelle’s head throbbed from the anger.
Amidst the pain, she recalled what Valhayle said the other day.
‘At least one of them. Should be alive.’
The fury, worry, and blind faith in his words.
She didn’t know what reason he had to say those words. But when she heard him say that, she made a decision.
She realized that now was the time to begin what she had been planning since last night.
Zelle tilted her wings and changed direction.
You know what, Sir Valhaye?
She rose high above and smiled while clenching her beak.
‘This time… I’m not going to obey your orders.’
Valhayle looked up at the midday sky.
The days were getting shorter.
He didn’t know how long the battle that was to start at noon would be.
But he was certain of one thing.
If the battle was drawn out until nightfall, Roheneim would be in a disadvantageous position.
He lived the last 10 years in the Black Defense Wall so he knew tactics to fight effectively using the geographic advantage of the Wall.
One of them was a prolonged battle and the other was a night battle.
When the Black Defense Wall was the allies’, it was an advantage; now that it was Granoir’s, however, they had to fight that same advantage.
After all, they had to recapture the Black Defense Wall.
Valhayle grabbed the handle of his sword.
There was a thin flow of dust in front of the Wall.
There were 40,000 Roheneim men and 25,000 Granoir soldiers.
Roheneim had more men but numbers had little meaning in this battle since the Black Defense Wall’s geographic advantage could easily overcome that difference.
They would fire arrows from above as the Roheneim army climbed the wall.
Valhayle was considering destroying parts of the Black Defense Wall with an explosive in the worst case scenario.
Fortunately, Granoir was confident in this battle.
Since they couldn’t easily capture the Wall even with multiple attempts, they must be thinking that it would be hard for Roheneim too.
Valhayle gritted his teeth.
Granoir brought 100,000 soldiers when they intruded and stationed 50,000 near Lopecce and 20,000 in the capital.
They even stationed 5,000 throughout the conquered castles in the Eastern region and stationed the remaining 25,000 in the Black Defense Wall.
If he was the commander of Granoir, he would have stationed 50,000 men in the Black Defense Wall.
Valhayle’s course of thought paused.
Granoir’s internal situation is failing.
It wasn’t confirmed but according to hearsay, Granoir had suffered damage from the typhoon.
The people of Roymonde knew when the typhoon would come and thus had time to avoid it. However, Granoir wouldn’t.
Valhayle was aware that they relocated their camp near downstream of the Vishen River.
It was a reasonable choice since the river would enable easier transport of the plundered resources.
But during typhoon season, that area was watery chaos.
If the water level rose because of the heavy rain and if many were flushed away along the strong current, Granoir must have lost a significant amount of soldiers and resources.
Perhaps it could be a lie that there are 20,000 soldiers in the capital.
Valhayle calculated all of this and predicted Roheneim’s victory.
If they recaptured the Black Defense Wall, the remaining Granoir troops would be trapped in the middle region.
And once the color of the flag on the Black Defense Wall changed, the Voymont soldiers gathering in the Eastern region would have a definite destination.
The deep yellow flag that danced like the flames of a beacon.
It would be the guiding light for them.
A horn signaled that there was only an hour left till noon.
Valhayle drew his sword and slashed the rope holding the flag to the tent.
He grabbed the falling flag pole.
His eyes followed the tip of the flagpole and up to the sky.
And a bird.
He thought of the bird that was sent off for a mission to deliver the confidential message with the sigil of Roymonde.
The messenger bird.
Then suddenly he realized why he felt so pressured by the bird’s eyes.
The bird’s deep yellow eyes.
It resembled the color of Roymonde.
He felt a sense of honor in those eyes.
The common bird of prey in Roymonde, a cavier falcon.
It was strange that he could see the whole of Roymonde in just those eyes.
The horn signaled again.
Half an hour until the battle began.
Valhayle swung the flag like a bird’s soar to the sky.
The summoning horn resonated throughout the camp.
Zelle flinched when she heard the horn from a distance.
She shouldn’t be able to hear this if she followed Valhayle’s plan.
She would already be in the mountainous area of the north of the middle region.
But she had already made her mind to disobey his orders.
Zelle talked to Valhayle internally.
‘I’m not going to make a detour around the Granoir camp. Instead…’
‘I’m going through it.’
It was a dangerous plan that gave her chills just by thinking about it.
But that was why she had the right to say the following words.
So Valhayle, don’t die and win.
Zelle started flapping her wings powerfully towards the green flag far ahead.
Zelleine arrived at Lopecce in 2 days.
Because she had to carry out her plan, it took half a day longer than the original route Valhayle had given.
When she signaled in front of the central tent, Sir Evon greeted her.
Sir Evon was Sir Caiburne’s half-brother and the commander of the 1st order.
‘Where’s Sir Caiburne?’
Zelle had doubts about Sir Caiburne’s absence but her exhaustion blocked any further thoughts.
She barely maintained her balance and extended the leg with the confidential message.
Sir Evon hastily removed the confidential message from her leg.
Zelle noticed the bandage around Sir Evon’s legs. He also had many recent wounds all over the body.
Lopecce was also in continuous battle.
Zelle was certain that Sir Evon’s wounds were from the battle.
Sir Caiburne’s wary face last time and Sir Evon’s wounds seemed to reflect Lopecce’s current struggles and state.
Lopecce didn’t lose many men like Voymont or Roheneim but protecting the Western borders must be difficult in its own way.
‘But the western region was lucky compared to the other regions.’
Zelle thought to herself.
Granoir conquered the capital rapidly from the start. For some reason, though, they decided to be slow on the western region.
Perhaps it was because they thought Roymonde was already under their control and decided to focus on the war with the other nations.
Anyway, with their decrease in speed, Lopecce gained some time to prepare.
That was why Lopecce could retain their region despite the huge number difference.
After Zelle ate some food and water brought by Sir Evon’s squire, she fell asleep.
As soon as the reply was written, she was going to leave for Roheneim.
She obviously knew that her way back would be way more dangerous than the way she took to come here.
Zelle was asleep for almost half a day.
Beside her, Sir Evon was writing a reply with a frown on his face.
“…Hm. I should rewrite it.”
Before tying the final response on Zelle, Sir Evon edited the contents of the confidential message several times..
He even summoned the secretary.
Zelle sent Sir Evon a look urging him to hurry up, but the man lacked the sense to notice it.
Sir Evon asked the secretary.
“When writing a confidential message, is there a rule on writing the royal descendants’ names?”
“Yes, numbers must be written in word-form and you must state their full name.”
So it meant that instead of 1st princess Linbessy, it had to be First Princess Linbessy Bmaha Meredith.
Sir Evon asked again.
“Do you know the spelling of the 8th princess’s full name?”
The 8th princess.
She couldn’t breathe.
‘That’s me. He’s going to write my name in the confidential message. He knows something about my real body!!’
Zelle floundered but neither Sir Evon nor his secretary looked her way.
The secretary spelled out her name letter by letter.
After successfully writing Zelle’s name in the confidential message, he folded the letter roughly.
He approached Zelle, who was shaking with shock, and tied the confidential message around her leg.
She heard Sir Evon clearly but she couldn’t move.
Sir Evon raised his brows and pushed her slightly.
Zelle fell over with no strength in her legs.
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