The platoon commanders paled at the severity of Gowen’s wounds.
“…Ku!? What’s the situation?”
Despite his wounds Gowen still continued to lead the army.
“The goblins have broken through the middle line held by the infantry. At this rate…!” The messenger that had arrived spoke with a pained voice.
Gowen grit his teeth in regret. “Signal… the retreat.”
He forced his hurting body to give instructions. “Have the left… wing go around the north, while the west wing goes… around the south. Is the cavalry… well?”
The platoon commander nodded. “Presently, the cavalry is attempting to take the enemy from behind, but with the demihumans—”
Gowen cut the report midway and gave out orders. “Have the cavalry… and the chariots… support the retreat. Tell the supply platoon… to abandon all cargo… The archers are to… exhaust their arrows while… the others retreat. After that… they should also retreat.”
After breaking through the middle, the goblins would surely spread to the flanks next.
“In the worst case… At least have one of the flanks… retreat.”
The platoon commanders could only nod at Gowen’s heartless decision. Though they were also commanders who led soldiers, they couldn’t argue Gowen’s decisions.
After Gowen finished giving orders, he passed out once more.
The platoon commanders nodded to each other with pale faces as they carried out Gowen’s orders.
“Call back the chariots, we’ll help Lord Gowen escape,” a platoon commander said.
The platoon commanders called back the chariots attacking Gi Gu, and had them bring Gowen away.
The magic platoon was left to support the retreating platoons.
“Retreat! Retreat!” A platoon commander said.
At that, the lines that the fearful soldiers have been defending until now crumbled in one fell swoop.
Gowen Ranid was a defensive person.
To retreat is harder than to advance, and to completely withdraw from battle is even more difficult.
Having the entire western army retreat without its commander, Gowen, was indeed not going to be easy.
Though the western army was able to retreat masterfully under Gi Gu’s nose in the last battle, that was only due to Gowen’s exceptional leadership skills.
The platoon commanders were no slouch themselves, but they did not have the ability to oversee the entire army like Gowen could.
As a result, the various platoons retreated individually instead of together.
Unfortunately, the goblins were not so kind as to leave that gaping hole alone.
Morale was at an all-time high due to the Goblin King leading, so when the goblins saw the human army retreating poorly, they pursued the various retreating platoons and hunted them like wolves preying upon sheep.
The running soldiers were struck down by spears and blown away by magic, while the fallen were skewered to ensure they were dead.
Of the goblins giving chase, the most zealous of them all was none other than the Man-Eater Snake, Gi Ba.
“After them! Don’t let even a single one escape!” Gi Ba inspired the normal goblins as he led them on a chase brimming with hate.
Every time the humans screamed and their blood bathed him, Gi Ba’s hate was satiated.
“More, kill, more! Kill them all!” Gi Ba was in a trance as he chased after the humans, but that mad chase eventually came to a halt.
“Goblin, die!” The cavalry that was tasked
to support the retreating soldiers attacked Gi Ba, forcing him to grit his teeth as he helplessly watched the humans run.
The human cavalry only had 50 soldiers left, but they still supported their allies.
In the face of the cavalry’s spear, the goblins had no choice but to halt their pursuit.
Unfortunately, for the cavalry, that meant abandoning all hopes of escape.
That was because their decision to support the infantry ultimately led to Hal and his iron legs to catch up with them.
Originally, Hal was going after the chariots, but when he saw the cavalry attacking the pursuing goblins, he dropped the chariots and went for them instead.
“Damn it, it’s them again! At our heels right at the very end!” Though they stood at the edge of death, the human platoon commander encouraged his soldiers as he raised up his spear. “Kill them! Let this battle honor Lord Corseo! Let them know our cavalry is peerless on the plains!”
The entire cavalry cheered at the platoon commander’s words. Their faith in their young platoon commander was unwavering as they followed him from behind.
The cavalry lined up their spears as they ran after their commander.
Hal raised his spear when he saw that. “Brave warriors of Paradua! Stake your lives on your spear! Bring death upon all who impede our path!”
The Paradua riders cheered at Hal’s words, and they rode after him from behind.
The Paradua riders assumed a wedge-shape formation as they rode for the human cavalry.
As the two commanders clashed, the human commander grazed Hal by the side, but Hal reached the commander’s neck.
As Hal’s voice resounded, the riders of Paradua rode even fiercer, and they annihilated the human cavalry. This was the western human army’s last resistance, and from here on, the battle became one-sided.
As the demihumans watched the humans retreat from the blood-dyed plains, they cried out victory with tears in their eyes.
“We did it! We expelled the humans! Are you seeing this, Harid!” Mido of the fang tribe called out the name of that ancient hero as he looked up to the heavens with the rest of his pack.
“Daizos! Gurfia! This is your… UOoOO!” The chief of the centaurs, Tianos, could not finish his sentence. He could only cry at the heavens.
The battle that would later be known as the Battle of Piena Plains ended in the goblins’ victory.
The goblin casualties numbered 400, while the human casualties numbered 1000.
It was indeed a hard-fought battle.
After the battle the heavily wounded Gowen retreated to the western capital, while the goblin army advanced toward the colonial city and the western capital.
Though the humans still controlled their territory, the rule of the Germion Kingdom was slowly being usurped by the goblins.
As the peaceful rays of the sun descended, the beginning of the month of Toura came.