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271 A slaughter at the gates

 ***

Your speech has lifted the morale of the soldiers.

Chances of desertion severely dropped.

As a king, by joining the battle you have massively increased the morale of your soldiers. They will not falter or fear as long as you fight alongside them.

Soldiers will fight to their last breath.

All soldiers have been invigorated. They will not lose stamina or tier as easily as before.

***

The enemy forces stood across from the city. They made sure to be away from the catapult range this time.

Dave looked up and nodded toward Dementi.

"Release the trebuchets!" Dementi shouted.

Instead of rocks, the trebuchets threw dozens of soldier heads roped together that fell a few feet away from the enemy soldiers.

Fear and panic-stricken, some of the enemy soldiers took a few steps away from the maggot-infested heads of their brothers that died yesterday.

Dementi kept shooting the decapitated heads of the soldiers.

Dave could see movement in the front ranks of the enemy lines, there was a general trying to calm the soldiers down.

Dave's tactic was mainly to spread fear in the enemy ranks. To give them a preview of what is to come when they die.

Finally, having calmed the soldiers, the general ordered a cavalry charge.

Dave smiled, 'that's not the way to use cavalry, let me teach you why!'

The horses moved across the field crushing the decapitated heads of their brethren as they ran toward the city.

Dementi called for the sounding of battle drums and horns.

Dave retreated to the backline awaiting the enemy to come.

"Ready your tower shields!" Dave called. The heavy infantry poised themselves behind a thick line of tower shields.

"HOLD!" Dave shouted.

Dementi atop the tower gave a command for the archers to nock their arrows waiting for release.

Dementi ordered the trebuchets to send the first volley of boulders. They came down on the horses, crushing them and setting a trail of oil ablaze. The fire scared the horses near it and stalled them breaking their momentum. The cavalry charge was showing openings.

"loose!" Dementi ordered when the cavalry was in the archers' range.

Arrows blotted the sky as they came down like a black wave of death. the first arrow volley felled horses that tripped more riders coming behind them. The cavalry navigated across the field evading the spiked walls. By evading the walls there were gathered tight together in lines but were separated from the rest of the cavalry.

The cavalry was closing the gap too fast for Dementi to order another volley so she shouted, "Fire at will!"

"HOLD!" Dave called as the cavalry, was charging.

"HOLD!" he shouted again, the cavalry was only a dozen meters away still being felled by the stream of arrows from the walls.

"NOW, SPIKES UP!" Dave gave another order. The soldiers at the front raised their spikes and poised them on small gaps between their tower shields.

The cavalry crashed into the risen spears. The spears pierced through horse and rider alike. The cavalry charging momentum wasn't able to break the tower shield formation.

Dave's tactic to spread the cavalry by using the Spiked wall worked. They were separated from each other and their momentum was broken by the arrows and spikes.

Samael was in the front and ordered the tower shield line to swap with the melee fighters, they began slaughtering the riders that were stockpiled like a wall of meat.

"That' why you don't start a fight with cavalry. HA!" Dave laughed.

Dementi kept ordering the release of arrows on the downed cavalry and on the ones still pouring from behind.

The enemy general sounded the retreat for the cavalry. The riders turned tail and ran back to their encampment. The poor display of tactics gave Dave an enormous advantage. He had taken down more than two-thirds of the cavalry units and now his own cavalry numbers were much greater than the enemies.

After retreating, the opposing general ordered the march of the foot soldiers, followed by archers behind them.

Dave waved a hand to Dementi. She nodded and gave a knight a few commands. Moments later a pigeon could be seen flying above the city and headed to the north.

"Your majesty, there is movement in the forest!"

"Tell the light infantry stationed there to hold for just a little bit. If they can't, burn the forest on those fuckers!"

"Fuckers?"

"Oh, sorry, burn the forest," Dave said, he had forgotten he was a king for a moment.

"As you command."

The foot army began picking up speed.

"Swap back! Use roman formation!" Dave shouted.

Dave had already instructed the soldiers on how to do the Roman formation. The front row would protect them from the charging foot soldiers, and the soldiers behind them will use their own shields to cover the arrows coming from above.

When the enemy charged into Dave's ranks, the front line held strong. The enemy arrows bounced off the shields. However, some arrows still managed to go through the gaps between the shield formation. But whenever an Arotsian soldier was hit, another would take their position and keep the roman shield formation in place.

The enemy soldiers failed to break the formation, while Arotsian soldiers pierced through them with spears from behind the shields.

Dave wanted to buy time for his next plan.

A few minutes later, a horn blew from inside the city.

Dave smiled, "This is how we use cavalry!"

The ground trembled as the cavalry that Dave stationed yesterday was running across the open field toward the archers. The archers noticed the charge far too late and the arrows they loosened killed only a few riders. Panic ensued and most of the archers broke formation, running away. This only made it easier for Dave's own cavalry to run them down. Crushing, cutting and destroying the whole regiment of archers with absolute ease.

The flank from Dave's cavalry separated the enemy foot soldiers from the rest of the army and now they were nothing but easy picking.

"CRUSH THEM!"

Dave's soldiers swapped with the backline and dove on the enemy like the tide.

The enemy called another retreat of the soldiers, but Dave wasn't prone to letting them get away.

He rode ahead on top of Nightmare leading a manhunt with all the soldiers. "Kill them all!"