Chapter 190 Scheming in the Night
The banquet was still going on.
Attractive noble ladies dressed in beautiful clothes, girls as shy as fawns, as well as seductive and alluring beauties……
These beautiful women, that were usually out-of-reach and cold to most suitors, were all flocking around Jefferson. Either giggling while covering their lips with their silk fans, or blushing while pressing themselves onto him, or sending seductive gazes from afar. Though the beauties here were far less distinguished than those in the royal court, there were many of them, each with their own appeal, like flowers waiting to be plucked at his whim.
After much effort, Jefferson managed to free himself from the ladies and met with the dozen radiant knights that had been patiently waiting in a secret room behind the city hall.
"Vieri, tell me! How has the preparation been going?" The moment he entered the room, the faint smile on Jefferson's face had vanished, replaced with a dense killing intent.
After greeting Jefferson and bowing to him, the radiant knights took their seats. Vieri, who was in charge of the operation this time, stood up to explain their progress in rallying the knights.
"……7 knights from Gotland City, 11 knights from the City of Cobar, 8 knights from Schaeffer City. As of now, the witcher-knights that have rallied in Herdurand City number 1513 men. The knights' camp is being expanded; the supplies and equipment are arriving in a timely fashion. The reorganization and training of the troops is being overseen by Knight Gutt.....the vanguard knights are led by Ninther and have arrived in Blue Hillock City. No information have been sent back thus far……”
Jefferson suddenly interrupted Vieri's report, "How long has it been since Ninther set off?"
"It's been seven days!" Vieri hesitated before speaking, "They reported three days ago when they reached Blue Hillock City. It seems they found something odd there. But they haven't been in contact since……"
"Send some people to get in contact with them as soon as possible. Make sure they don't go in too deep. You may have heard about the plane invasion this time. This is not a foreign creature accidentally wandering into our plane. It's a more powerful material plane that has their eyes set on us. To avoid them planting their roots here, we have to chase them out before they cement their position."
A Third-Grade Dragon Knight was almost the most powerful being on this plane already. Jefferson's words undoubtedly had immense authority. Thus, the numerous radiant knights present couldn't help but look at each other, their minds filled with shock and fear.
Finally, it was Vieri who couldn't help but ask, "Sir Jefferson, do we know which plane the invaders are from?"
"It doesn't matter which plane they are from. All you need to know is that their plane is of a higher grade than ours!" Jefferson was also filled with worry, "As long as they’re not from those terrifyingly large planes, there's nothing to fear! This is our world after all. Even if they managed to force their way in here, they’re still subject to the suppression of the planar laws and can't exhibit much of their strength. Don't you people forget, Sir Willis has the power of a Fourth Grade- the limit of this plane!"
The radiant knights present nodded in agreement with the words of the great Dragon Knight Jefferson.
The power limit of this plane was Fourth Grade. No outsider could exceed this limit. Even if the intruder possessed the power of a Fourth Grade, once they broke into the knights' plane they would be suppressed and weakened by the planar laws. What would they use to fight against Sir Willis, whose power reached the absolute limit of Fourth Grade then?
Even if the invaders’ power normally exceeded the Fourth Grade, they would be suppressed to a maximum of Fourth Grade once they entered the knight's plane. And when that happens, who knows who will be the final victor! However, the witcher-knights have the home field advantage. If it came down to a battle of life and death, they would always have a numerical advantage over the trespassers.
This was the sole consoling thought of all the people present!
But just as this group of witcher-knight higher-ups was gathered together and immersed in their discussion, four black shadows were silently roaming about the night sky above the castellan's castle. A bloodsucking vampire the size of a washbasin, with deep black fur all over its body, folded its wings and slowly crawled on top of the roof of the room the knights were gathered in.
This was a nation of knights after all. Their control and application of arcanology was still crude and superficial in every aspect. If this had been the World of Adepts, any random magic alarm or protective array would have been able to completely cover the secret room, shielding it from any scrying attempts from the outside world.
However, arcanology was not widely applied in such a manner here. Thus, as these high-grade knights were gathered to have their secret meeting, their main means of security was having some witcher-knights standing guard and patrolling.
Surely, they would be able to stop most means of spying from the outside world through such means. But when their enemies were not humans, and instead a bunch of mysterious adepts from another plane, their guards and patrol squads were rendered excessively crude, basic, and insufficient.
Even if they were to wrack their brains, they wouldn't expect the spy to be right above them. Even the witcher-knights, with their vigilance and sharps senses, couldn’t detect a bloodsucking bat when it stops beating its wings and slowly glides down from the dark night sky.
Seeing that one of their companions had successfully landed atop of the secret room, the remaining bloodsucking bats quickly flapped their wings and flew towards the square in front of the castellan's quarters.
Far away, even with a distance of a kilometer between them, they could still clearly see the two giant green dragons lying on the brightly-lit square.
Right now, several carts were slowly being driven into the square.
The carts weren't loaded with food such as grain, fruits and vegetables. Instead, one after another were filled with large domestic animals letting out sorrowful shrieks of panic and fear. From the looks of it, it was the Charost beast that was most often raised by the natives of this plane (Author: a kind of creature that is similar to domestic pigs on earth.)
Perhaps because they could smell the unique stench of dragons-the creatures at the very top of the food chain-the cows, goats, and the charosts began to panic once they entered the square. Loud and noisy bleats and shrieks filled the air of the silent square.
The two green dragons instantly raised their slender necks when they heard the final calls from their food. Their large mouths opened slightly, and the light green saliva dripped from between their crystal-white fangs. Their saliva was clearly quite acidic, dripping to the floor and and leaving tiny sizzling holes in the stone floor.
The two green dragons couldn't hold back their desire to feed. They instantly got up from the floor and leapt to the side of the carts in one movement. With one bite of their jaws they shredded the wooden cart dividers and dragged the domestic animals out, pinning them with their claws while tearing at them and feeding.
Even though green dragons were a top-level magical creature, they were still wild beasts by nature. As such, the sight of their feeding was extremely savage and bloody. They didn't even care for the human servants around them when they fed.
The cart driver quickly jumped off the cart and ran when he saw the dragon leaping over. If he was too slow, he would either have fallen to his death as the dragons lifted the cart into the skies with their jaws, or he would have turned into a dessert for the dragons' meal.
It was clear that these two green dragons had enjoyed countless offerings from the humans, as they were especially picky even while they feasted. For many of the domestic animals, they would only pick the fattest and juiciest parts of their meat.
Using their large bodies, they pushed their food over and pinned them down with their sharp claws. Then, they used their sharp scythe-like fangs to bite into their favourite parts, throwing aside the rest of the body that they didn't want. The entire process was truly bloody and cruel! In just a few moments, the once neat and clean city square had turned into a bloody slaughterhouse filled with the stench of blood, and littered with the broken remains of domestic animals.
Of course, those few tiny things flying about the dark horizon far away did not escape the green dragons' powerful sense of smell and elementium.
The green dragon Ysondre lifted its head, looking at the insignificant bugs, faintly radiating traces of darkness, with its amber-coloured eyes. After a few moments of painful deliberation, it gave up the urge to fly into the sky and hunt them.
It was only a few tiny weaklings radiating feeble amounts of dark elementium flux. They probably posed no harm to this human city. Moreover, his master had repeatedly warned him not to hunt as he willed in human cities.
Thus, with the fest still before him, Ysondre quickly forgot about the annoying bugs and focused on enjoying the humans' offering.
This was the first time vampires had appeared in the knights' plane- otherwise there was no way the green dragon Ysondre would have let them be so easily. If the green dragon could hear the conversation of the vampire spawn a kilometer away, Ysondre would have sworn to turn them into dust, even if it had to chase them to the ends of earth!
"I didn't expect these green dragons to eat the food offered by the humans!"
"Yes, this might be our chance……"
"Yes, it has to be the blessing of our blood ancestor. For these two giant lizards to be such idiots……"
"Hurry up and inform our respected blood ancestor and have her find some way to get some powerful poisons. If we could incapacitate these green dragons, we might have a chance to taste dragon blood……"
"This idea is ingenious! You lot stay here and look, I'll go and inform our respected blood ancestor……"
The vampire spawn flew about the dark night skies, closely monitoring every action of the green dragons, while exchanging passionate words. Soon, a bloodsucking bat turned around while beating its wings as it took to higher skies, flying towards the direction of Blue Hillock City.
Yet at this moment, the Great Duke Lington was also having a secret meeting with his subordinates in another secret room within the castellan's quarters.
"Have we still not figured out their goal?" It was the Great Duke Lington who spoke, a huge frown on his face.
"No clear goal." A veteran general wearing golden armor, his face worn with age, shook his head and spoke, "Perhaps even they themselves aren't sure what their goal and target is?"
"But I've personally gone outside the city to see their base, which is constantly expanding. The expanded base could fit 3000 witcher-knights at the very minimum." A young general solemnly commented.
"3000? So many of them……"
"God! That's 3000 witcher-knights! Even during the last war against the heretics there weren't so many witcher-knights rallied together!"
"We can't let them go on like this. Even with the current numbers of witcher-knights, they already pose a serious threat to our Herdurand City."
"How many more troops can we draw from the surrounding cities?" Great Duke Lington calmly asked.
"There are currently twenty-thousand city guards stationed in Herdurand City. If we include your ten-thousand personal guards, we can maintain a numerical advantage of approximately 25 to 1 against the witcher-knights. But if their numbers keep increasing, we would have a hard time maintaining the balance in combat strength. Sir, as you should know, making city guards go against witcher-knights with a numerical advantage of less than 20 to 1 would be no different than sending them to their deaths!"
The veteran general's words drew everyone's agreement, and they could only lower their heads in frustration.
They had to have an absolute numerical advantage. Using mere strategy to pit a mundane army made of normal humans against the supernaturally-powered witcher-knights would be a hopeless endeavour!
When faced with the overwhelming number of witcher-knights, as well as the numerous spellbreaker knights, radiant knights, and the two dragon knights that were so powerful that they struck despair into their enemies, no one could come up with any courage or will to fight..
Right now, everyone could only pray as hard as they could that the blade of the witcher-knight army wasn't pointed towards themselves!