Chapter 817 - Delusional Love
The Flame Dragon Army’s Dragon Crystal Cannons were still being escorted from Tian Ling City to Dragon City. I, on the other hand, had our cannons delivered to Dragon City first. As such, our heavy machinery got a head start. Furthermore, King Rob had granted 50 Dragon Crystal Cannons to the Royal Army. Those, in addition to the ones that the Violent Thunder Army originally had, the Royal Army was kind of like a rich man with a whopping hundred cannons under his wing. Counting just the regular cannons, we had at least two hundred, along with countless crossbow carts. Under my command, the battle carts carrying the Dragon Crystal Cannons came to a stop. We turned them towards the enemy. Long Xing pulled out his sword and roared, “Release!”
My eardrums rang as over a hundred Dragon Crystal Cannons fired at once. This in turn created an extremely powerful surge of power in the area, pushing all the NPCs and players backward. I could see the muzzle flashes as they exploded in the distance. All the Blood Beast Men and Demon Flame Archers were blasted into pieces. Over 30,000 of their soldiers had come out. With this sweeping attack, over half of them were killed. Limbs and spare body parts littered the ground and smoke slowly filled the sky. The startled Hybrid Demons had no choice but to retreat.
Right then, one of the majors in the Flame Dragon Army walked his horse over and shouted, “Royal Army men, have you gone crazy? Our brothers are still on the battlefield! Why would you release your cannons?”
I calmly looked at him in the eye and said, “Do you see any Flame Dragon soldiers that are alive? I didn’t.”
He glared back at me, but couldn’t retort anything back. After all, my ranking was far above his. Not to mention that I was the commander of the Royal Army. If Theodore didn’t open his mouth, what could he do? It was clear as day that Theodore was already in a bad mood. It was only the first battle and he was already losing the advantage. He initially joined this campaign thinking that with Flame Dragon Army he would be able to defeat these Hybrid Demon Armies, but never would he have imagined that he would be taught a lesson by the Royal Army. Sometimes strength does not determine the outcome. A battle is truly a competition of strategy and wits. In regards to this, Theodore is no match for me, a player.
After that round of explosions from the Royal Army, the [Legend], [Hero’s Mound], and [Judgement] players were all gaping. None of them would’ve imagined that the NPC cannons could be so strong. Li Mu walked over to me with his Neptune’s Blade in hand and said, “These Dragon Crystal Cannons are so OP…. I can’t believe it. They didn’t seem that strong at the Battle of the Sea of No Return…”
I replied, “At the Sea of No Return the Dragon Crystal Cannons had been dampened by the sea mist, and so their attack power was weakened. Now that we’re fighting on the plains, it is only natural that they be more powerful.”
Long Xing reminded me, “General, after our Dragon Crystal Cannons released five consecutive explosions, they’ve turned red hot from the heat. We won’t be able to reuse them for a short while or else they’ll explode. Please be careful.”
I nodded, “Okay, understood. Let’s set out! There’s no need to bother with those Beast Blood Spearmen, if they dare come close, we’ll just attack. There’s no need for us to delay our journey any longer.”
The Flame Dragon Army had already set out in front of us. [Legend], [Judgement], and [House of Prestige] also went out with them. There were far more players than NPC soldiers, but they were far less organized and disciplined in comparison. Even the [Zhan Long] Steel Blade Horsemen couldn’t match the organized Royal Army formations.
As we passed the border of the Hero’s Graveyard, we continued onward into the Revered One’s Plains. I could see the lone fortress in the distance. It was the Revered One’s City, Luo Lin’s nest. The city itself was shrouded in mist. There was still quite a distance between us and our destination. Who knows what else would be awaiting us.
I dashed forward a dozen or so meters, right over to a group of Dragon City soldiers. When they saw me, they immediately greeted me, “Lord Dragon Knight!”
Among the crowd of people, Queen Zi Shu was riding on a red battle horse. When she saw me arrive, she smiled, “Master, you’re here!”
I gave a nod and looked over at Frost. She was riding on a battle horse with a white mane. She was dressed in intricate armor and she wielded her Severing Beauty Sword in her hand. Her long hair was up in a tight and simple bun and she wasn’t wearing any jewelry. Even so, her eyes shone bright on her pretty face. She was looking at the distant city as she gave a sigh, “So we’ve finally reached this point….”
I replied, “Frost, Luo Lin was the first to betray mankind. He must’ve known that there would be a day like this. I pray you would forget your old affections and not leave any mercy for him.”
Frost wryly smiled, “Don’t worry Xiao Yao, I remember my mission. I also remember how you had nearly sacrificed your life for me in the Stormy Abyss. I’m only feeling a little sentimental. Even so, I understand that there’s no way for us to return to the past. I won’t look back. I will personally end this nightmare!”
I nodded, “Okay.”
Queen Zi Shu lightheartedly nudged Frost, “No need to be so serious, you’re making even me nervous….”
Qing Luo rode in on a white battle horse and smiled, “Lord Dragon Rider, now that you’re the commander of the Royal Army, you’ve got a different aura floating around you. Your charisma is quite mesmerizing now!”
I lazily looked at her and smiled, “Qing Luo, haven’t you reached the age where it's time to consider marriage?”
Qing Luo immediately blushed, “I…. I’ve never thought about those things. Powerful enemies are always waiting for a moment of weakness. All I want to do right now is follow Lady Frost and exterminate the Hybrid Demons before I think about those worldly things….”
I gave a long sigh, “The Hybrid Demon is both powerful and large. By the time you exterminate them all, it may be a hundred years later. At that point, little Qing Luo will become Grandma Qing Luo, and I’m afraid you won’t be eligible then…”
Frost couldn’t help but grin on the side, “Don’t scare her. Qing Luo still has some delusions about love.”
Zi Shu smiled, “Frost, are you saying that you don’t have any fantasies about love?”
Frost was startled, and a sliver of annoyance flashed in her eyes, “Me? What does it matter if I do or don’t? My position has sealed the fate of my love life. Besides… I have the body of a god, which grants me the curse of immortality. Even if I did have such delusions, would I just watch my partner wither away with age? I’d rather not. Someone like me should just avoid bringing that kind of pain to others…”
Zi Shu patted her chest with a smile, “Love is like a firework in the night sky, it lasts for an eternity in the moment. There doesn’t exist a love that lasts through space and time. Therefore, if there is love, then you shouldn’t miss it. Otherwise, you may never understand love in your lifetime.”
Frost couldn’t help but grin, “Zi Shu, you seem to be very experienced in this matter, did you love Ignaus?”
Zi Shu stiffened and turned her face away, “He and I were only civil, only for the sake of reproduction. He never loved me. I understand that very well. Besides, I would never love him either. Rather, I do love my little handsome master…”
I nearly spat out blood when I heard that final sentence. I immediately backed away and said, “I have to go and lead the Royal Army, you guys have fun. Frost, when the battle begins later, let the Flame Dragon Army take the lead. There’s no need for us to stop them from running to their own deaths. There are already so few reinforcement Dragon City soldiers, and their main objective is to defend Dragon City. There’s no need for them to die a meaningless death for another man’s campaign.”
Frost nodded, “Understood. You be careful.”
Continuing forward, a group of dog-like beasts appeared on the plains. All of them had rotting bodies with long and sharp sabers dripping with drool. They cackled and growled as they looked at the legion of men. I didn’t see any fear in their eyes. Though, thinking back, these Category 3 Hybrid Demons were spirits of the dead anyway — why would they be afraid of death?
Long Xing raised his long spear and said, “They’re Hellhounds. I’ve seen pictures of these dogs in our history books. They’re incredibly fierce and have the strength to tear a man apart alive. But… why would there be so many of them in the Revered One’s plains?!”
I looked in the distance but I only saw waves of dust rolling across the plains. Countless Hellhounds were heading straight for us. Clearly the Hybrid Demons had long received news of our arrival and were well prepared. These Hellhounds must’ve all been brought over from the Ghostly Rope Bridge. As I had predicted, the Hybrid Demon Kings were planning on using these plains as a battlefield. They must’ve figured that this would be a good place to bury 200,000 troops.
“Prepare for battle!”
I raised my Dragon Reservoir Sword well above my head and shouted, “Blade and Shield Camp in front, defend against the attack from the Hellhounds! We cannot let them through!”
My battle doctrine was to deal the most damage to the enemy at the cost of losing the least amount of lives. With the Blade and Shield Camp’s heavy shields for defense, the Hellhounds wouldn’t be able to kill quite as many of our people. On the flip side, if these Category 3 Hybrid Demons couldn’t break through our defenses, then they would just be giving experience and equipment to the Royal Army and [Zhan Long] soldiers.
“Steel Blade Horsemen, defense formation!” Wan Er’s clear voice rang out. Her voice was very pleasant to the ears, but it was powerful and firm. Perhaps, Wan Er’s orders carried even more weight than Li Mu or Qing Qian’s.
[Zhan Long] and the Royal Army defenses were very close and well-knit. On the other hand, the numerous guilds from Tian Ling City also set up their battle formations, creating a stretch that was a dozen or so kilometers long. With a slight shift in view, I could see the amazing scene. Hundreds of thousands of Hellhounds were rushing at the mass of players and NPCs. Everyone pulled out their blades and faced forward, anticipating the attack. I could even feel my breath quicken with excitement.
I pulled out my own Zhen Yue Blade as well. The moment the Hellhounds got close I immediately threw a chain of attacks. With a few slashes, I cut off one of the Hellhounds’ heads. My damage was just superb. On my left, I saw that the [Zhan Long] Steel Blade Horsemen were all pushed back upon impact. On my right, the Royal Army Barbarians roared and held their ground against the attack of the Hellhounds. At the same time, all of the shields shifted and blades burst out in quick succession. In a flash, the blades disappeared back behind the shields, blocking any counter-attack from the Hellhounds. The entire process would repeat again and again. This kind of strategy was extremely useful in a situation like this.
In the group of [Zhan Long] players, hundreds of arrows and spells flew into the group of monsters. At a time like this, the players were the true damage dealers. The system took this into account as well. After all, it would be boring to make the players only gain experience from clearing maps. What helped maintain player attention was the game system’s constant refreshing of quests and events.