I didn't think about that. About why did they created all those fortresses. Of course, one reason is to slowly destroy the army of the ratmen, but at the same time, to lead it to the final battlefield. There is a possibility that one of the fortresses destroy the assailants, and that no one appears afterward. But for the rest, their main purpose is just to be used as a bait. Well, that was before I arrived. I will not flee like last time, I have someone that will protect me and in return, I will protect them. The nearby dwarves can see a line of zombies leaving the fortress and reaching the entrance of the tunnel. They avoided the traps on the ground and the obstacles put by the dwarves.
I just hope that they won't have the same poison that they had in Ronta. Because, if they don't, this first battle will be easily won. I and three of my wraiths are positioned above the entrance, far enough to not be touched by the incoming bullets and shells, but close enough to activate my domain. Seeing my mana full, I personally create some additional zombies, we can never have enough of them. And after that, I waited. I tasked number one to stand behind Bori and kill any ratmen approaching him. He is the commandant, and he is a capable dwarf. If he dies too early, the morale of the remaining warriors will be crushed.
(That's good what you are doing. You are not turning into a complete madman. Did you realize that by talking with someone, you unintentionally cared about their lives? You are even asking number one to personally protect Bori. I am not talking about any undead, I am talking about number one, you are only using number one for something you really care. Honestly, I was feeling good that you had no regrets slaying all those humans, but the innocent dwarves, if you truly slaughtered them, I would have found that a waste.)
Now that you are saying that, I don't want those dwarves to really die. I mean, I guess I was too busy searching for the experience that I neglected my life. But like you said, the holy kingdom got what he deserved, like Aria. As for the rest, I will do as you ask and wipe out the threats for your demons. I just hope that it will be enough for me to reach my new evolution. After that, I waited, until Oslo warned me about the incoming army.
I wave at the lieutenant; I think it was Golni or something like that. After I see that he noticed me, I pointed at the tunnel under me. He seems perplexed for a second before nodding and warning his troop. That's good that he understood me, I blend in the rock wall and wait for the first ratman that will leave the tunnel. The first wall was really just to destroy the first waves of ratmen. There are 200 rifles and 300 crossbows pointed at the exit of the tunnel. I don't know what is better between the two weapons. I guess the crossbows are quicker for reloading but less deadly.
The dwarves are positioned on a small wall, allowing them to fire above my undead that are blocking the way. After that, the traps, and finally, nearly 100 zombies waiting for fresh meat. The perfect defense, or at least, something that will manage to slay a good chunk of the army. We wait for another 15 seconds when finally, the first ratman appears. It is the usual slave, badly armored, with broken weapons. He looks at the zombies, visibly terrified. I guess no one told him that he will fight undead and dwarves. He waits for a bit, and soon, more of his fellow ratmen leave the tunnel.
Numbers give strength. No more fearing the zombies, he joins his friends, or at least kin, and begin to jump at my zombies. But, the first wave doesn't even need the help of the dwarves. My zombies are tearing apart the weak body of the slaves, and since they are not swarming my undead servants, it is quite easy. Each zombie can only fight two ratmen at the same time, preventing anyone from being surrounded. Seeing this, some smarter ratmen are beginning to climb on the stone wall. Some quick slashes from my wraiths and body parts are sent flying. For now, I am alone capable of containing the ratmen. But that was for a short time.
Probably after hearing some cowards that fled, the responsible of this attack heard the presence of my warriors. And decided to fight the zombies with some rat ogres. Fat chance for them, the dwarves that were a little farther will take care of this problem. I can see Gloni concentrated, as all the dwarves are. The first rat ogre that passed the entrance of the tunnel gets turned into a porcupine. He even blocked the exit for a few seconds, allowing the crossbows to reload in time. The second rat ogre shared the same fate as the first, and the third died from the rifles. After seeing this disaster, the nearby ratmen flee in terror, not wanting to stay here anymore.
The first wave was easily destroyed, and I use the fresh blood to create 10 additional lich. I think that we killed at least 3000 ratmen and 3 rat ogres, but that's just the beginning. After consuming all this blood and to block even more the entrance, I order my zombies to push the corpse into the tunnel, but let a small window opened. Now, instead of 5 ratmen that can leave the tunnel at the same time, only two can. But, I know that if a rat ogre truly wants to pass, he will manage to break the small barricade.
I can see some smiles on the faces of the dwarves, and even I am nearly smiling. But that was before I heard the report of Oslo. I rushed to the lieutenant.
-BLOW UP THE TUNNEL!
He looks at me visibly terrified. But, instead of answering, he points at the fortress. That's true, the one in charge is probably in the fortress. I ask number one to transmit my order to Bori, saying that the ratmen are digging numerous tunnels inside the main one, to create more front. Soon, the explosives will be found and became useless. I hear the reply of number one, and in less than a minute, a huge fire leaves the tunnel. I guess that they managed to blow everything.
(Yes, but the spirits are reporting something else. Since the main tunnel is destroyed, they are digging in the entire surface of the wall. Instead of one front, you will have everything opened. Tell Bori and those dwarves that their first wall is now dangerous. They should retreat to the second one, and even there, I don't think it will stay safe for a long time. But, you earned some free zombies.)
Yes, thanks to my new lich, my count of zombies is rising. There is only one problem, how much times, need a ratman, to dig a tunnel that long? Because the rocks look hard to break. I tell Gloni that they are digging new tunnels, and this wall is now obsolete. After that, I float toward the fortress, to ask this question in person. The answer was satisfying.
-Do they want to dig this? They have truly no clues about how hard it will be, that's not like the rock from the Deep Mountain. Gold Summit is called like that because of the gold found near the peak of the mountain, but it is also called like that because only the summit is useful. The rest of the mountain is composed with that hard rock, slowing down everything. They will need at least three days or so to truly create a tunnel. Did you see what was their equipment?
Oslo, what is used by the ratmen?
(Ok, so you have the rat ogres that are using their claws on the stone wall. It is not very effective, and they keep breaking the handles of the pickaxes. As for the rest, looks like some normal pickaxes, nothing more. Oh, I see some heavily armored ratmen digging, they are a lot stronger than the regular ratmen. Besides the red color of their clothes, nothing else.)
-Normal pickaxes, but the ratmen using them are heavily armored and clearly different from the rest of the pack. And they are wearing something red.
-Some Red Guards? Damn, how many? It is really important that you transmit that to Thongril.
-He should already know it; my spirits transmit to me the same information that is transmitted to my spirit near him. As for the numbers, only a handful, not more than ten.
-Ok, fine, that's good. If your wraiths could deal with them, that would be good. As for the time, if the Red Guard is participating, I would say two days to create a tunnel. Or more than just one.
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