Chapter 1207: Advance of the Red Knights
The appearance of the Red Sword and Dusk Rain Knights completely changed the flow of battle. The superhuman soldiers fell one after another, their numbers dwindling.
But then, the legion shifted its strategy.
Much to our surprise, they started falling back to put more distance between themselves and the Red Knights. Did they finally realize the significant losses and decided to regroup?
Even so, the superhuman soldiers were on a timer due to the health drain after removing their limiters. Wasting time only gives us the advantage.
So why didn’t they stay on the offensive? A tactical mistake from their commanders? Did they have another purpose…?
Suddenly, I recalled the unsettling sensation from earlier. The eerie feeling of the mana flowing into the land itself.
Could it be that they were trying to die? Was there some meaning in having the soldiers die?
（Master? What’s wrong?）
『Well, you see――』
Just as I was about to share my lingering unease…
（They’re running again!）
『Yeah, but that way is…!』
（The direction of the villagers!）
『Not this again!』
Even if the soldiers were deliberately sacrificing themselves, we had no choice but to defeat them in order to protect the villagers. Fran hurriedly moved to block their path.
Until a moment ago, they were all rushing towards Fran. Yet the superhuman soldiers didn’t even spare her a glance now.
All the remaining 10,000 or so aberrations were targeting the distant caravan of villagers. The same as when we defended Horna Village, the turning point for Fran to master her blessing.
No, perhaps it will be even harder this time. The superhuman soldiers had intentionally spread out, likely to avoid getting wiped out by wide-area spells.
This was easily the most difficult strategy to deal with since we wanted to protect the villagers. Since the Red Knights were also guardians of the people, they likely feel the same way.
「Tch! We have to chase after them!」
「「「 Yeah! 」」」
We immediately began pursuing the superhuman soldiers, along with a moderate amount of healing.
However, we quickly ran into one miscalculation.
The Red Knights were stronger than the superhuman soldiers, but that’s due to their teamwork, skills, and combat experience. They could not beat them in terms of pure stats.
In fact, their stats were way lower than the transformed superhuman soldiers.
In other words, the superhuman soldiers had a decisive advantage in speed, having gained the power of magical beasts. No matter how desperately the Red Knights chased, they could not close the distance.
In all likelihood, the superhuman soldiers will reach the villagers first, no matter what we do.
Only Sibylla, the Dusk Rain Captain, and a few others would be able to keep up. But is that enough to protect all the villagers?
We may have managed to protect them before, but who knows what our enemies have up their sleeves. It seems Fran shared that feeling.
Sibylla was apparently considering leaving her subordinates behind and running ahead alone, so Fran called out to her.
We felt countless gazes filled with hostility and murderous intent, the most intense of which likely came from the Dusk Rain Captain. However, none of them actually attacked Fran.
「Sibylla, we need to talk.」
「Long time no see! I take it this is an urgent matter?」
「Nn. I know a way for all of us to catch up to them.」
She seemed willing to hear us out, but there’s no way she’d accept our proposal that easily. How are we going to persuade her…?
「Nn. Everyone here needs to accept me as leader.」
「Alright! I’m in!」
Sibylla voiced her agreement before Fran could provide a detailed explanation. Wait, what? She really agreed to obey Fran’s orders?
The two were not nearly close enough for such blind trust. So why did she accept?
The other Red Knights seemed to share my feelings. They wore blank faces, as their brains refused to register Sibylla’s words.
However, Sibylla didn’t allow any objections. It seems that even applied to be the captain of the Dusk Rain Knights, despite his hostility towards Fran.
「Just follow her. This includes you, Madred. Fran isn’t lying, I can tell by her eyes.」
The level of trust the Red Knights had in Sibylla was simply remarkable. Sibylla ordered them to follow Fran, and they simply fell silent and nodded. Madred, the captain of the Dusk Rain Knights, did the same.
Sibylla may be held in higher status than I thought.
The best part was we didn’t need to waste any time on persuasion and explanations.
「Alright, I’m the leader until we catch up! Guys, let’s run!」
「Roger that! Fran-dono!」
「「「 Roger! 」」」
They initially followed Fran because of Sibylla’s order, but they quickly realized it once they started running.
Even if they didn’t know the exact reason why, they certainly felt their running speed multiplied several times over.
This was, of course, due to Fran’s title, “March of the Valkyrie”.
March of the Valkyrie: A title given to Valkyries who meet the requirements.
Effect: When leading an army of one hundred or greater, the effects of the Valkyrie’s stealth-type and movement-type skills are extended to the whole army. If the Valkyrie is not in direct command, the effect is greatly reduced.
Sibylla’s words convinced over a hundred Red Knights to follow Fran, allowing Fran’s title to extend its effects over all of them.
My multitude of skills went through Fran to reach the Red Knights. We’ve used this title a couple times now, but it’s never been this powerful before.
Each of the knights were elites to begin with, so even the slightest boost had a significant impact on their abilities.
「Hahaha! This is incredible! We can catch up, no problem!」
The Red Knights, with Fran at the lead, charged forward at a staggering speed.