Monarch of Evernight - Volume 10 - The Flag of Evernight (1183-) Chapter 1215: Attack on the Jade Sea
“You’re our king, the king of the great corridor, the rightful king of the Jade Sea as well. We swear to you our loyalty, hoping that you will save us from our miserable fate.”
“Why me and not your own race’s experts? For instance, isn’t there a werewolf duke in the Jade Sea?”
“Whitebone Duke Minoka is the reason for the great corridor’s miserable fate. His rule of terror took away our hopes of seeing tomorrow. Tribes that are disrespectful or no longer have any use will be driven into the great corridor to fend for themselves. The werewolves in the corridor have no choice but to attack Zheng constantly, crushing ourselves against its fortress group.”
Xu Jingxuan roared furiously, “You lot attack year after year, yet you make it sound like you’re innocent! You say werewolf lives are important, does that mean our human lives are worthless? What do you have to say about our warriors dying every year!?”
An angry mercenary said, “Don’t forget that our commander came here to destroy you wolf pups for the human race.”
Eiseka wasn’t angry or flustered. “General Xu, humans also face the same problem that we do. A limited area of land cannot sustain that many people, or rather, a population that is peaceful and thriving. Even if we don’t attack you, won’t your country expand after a period of peace? Of course, your first choice might not be the impoverished great corridor. The long years of war serve only to diminish the population we cannot sustain.”
Xu Jingxuan was at a loss for words. Of course, he didn’t believe that war was simply to exhaust the population, but there was no denying that Zheng would expand if they weren’t always embroiled in political struggles. He could bring up numerous reasons to prove the necessity of war, but in the end, there would always be fighting.
Song Hui also looked rather surprised. She had always been cautious about Eiseka, but she had never imagined that a werewolf—especially one from such primitive tribes—would be able to say such things. His words were difficult to accept since his description of the purpose of war was too crude and bare. However, Song Hui knew that it was fairly close to the truth.
Limited land could not sustain too many people. This was true for continents of all levels since there was no standard to measure how much was sufficient—merely to not die from hunger? A life with a future? With dignity? The standards could be vastly different everywhere.
Qianye said at this point, “Since war is just a reason, I can’t solve your problem, either.”
“No, Your Majesty can definitely solve it!” Eiseka spoke with great confidence.
“There’s only so much land to go around, but the population will keep expanding faster as peace prevails. How do I solve this?”
Eiseka said, “The actual land might not increase, but the production from it can. We’re still using the most primitive methods in every field. If our civilization advances to the level of humans, this same land can sustain a population of ten times or even more. Yet, Minoka would not allow for any change to happen. In his eyes, the ancestral way of living is everything.”
“A zealous ancestral disciple,” Qianye spoke.
Eiseka remained still on the ground, waiting for Qianye’s decision.
Qianye’s thoughts scattered all of a sudden, recalling a name he hadn’t thought of in a while. William of the Summit of Peaks. In that grey-zone market back on the Western Continent was when Qianye first witnessed the werewolves’ internal conflict. After seeing the werewolves of the great corridor today, he still felt that it wasn’t so easy to make a choice between tradition and revolution.
Besides, the solution Eiseka had suggested wouldn’t solve the problem once and for all. The increase in production would provide for many more people in the short term, but this land wasn’t endless. The upper limit would eventually arrive and, with it, new conflicts. Changing the living situation by changing production methods was only useful for this particular time and place.
Qianye stood with his hands behind his back. “Since you consider me your king, then it’s time to show me your loyalty. Eiseka, the first batch of werewolf soldiers should’ve received sufficient training by now. Lead them to attack the Jade Sea.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
After leaving the village, Qianye led the generals back to the warship. Eiseka headed toward the entrance of the great corridor on his own to prepare for the assault on the Jade Sea.
The baffled mercenary generals exchanged private discussions on the way back while Qianye stood alone in front of the great corridor map, deep in thought.
A knock came from the door before Song Hui entered and closed the door behind her. “Are you really going to take in those werewolves?”
“What do you think?” Qianye asked calmly.
“What else? The best outcome is for those werewolves to fight one another until both sides are badly injured. Then, our army can swoop in and pull them all up by the roots!”
“Quite ruthless.” Qianye laughed.
“The benevolent should not wield weapons. I’m learned in both economics and military strategy.”
Qianye was more impressed. “To what degree?”
“As much as seventh brother studied, so too did I. It’s just that I don’t have the talent to become the future strategist god. I only learned the theory with no place to apply them.”
“The same as Zining? That’s pretty good,” Qianye praised.
What Zining had learned was naturally the most complete military strategy curriculum. It was rare for a girl like Song Hui to have learned so much. The plans she was suggesting had their merits—they were secretive and ruthless without any half-hearted moves.
Song Hui walked over to the map and drew her finger over it. “If we can clear out all the dark races from the great corridor and the Jade Sea, this big area is enough for a population of ten million. We can then bring in people from the neutral lands and annex Zheng to build a nation the size of two Imperial provinces. Even the Zhao clan only has that many people under its rule. If we capture the Jade Sea, we will be in a position to attack when we want, and defend when required.”
She flipped the map over and revealed a map of the entire Fort Continent. There, she drew two directions and said, “At that time, we can attack the central region if the conditions allow it. Otherwise, there’s a handful of small human nations to the south. Extinguish them, concentrate their military power, and fight it out with the werewolf chieftain in the center.”
“Those are human countries. Invading them would count as infighting, no?”
Song Hui replied sharply, “Those little countries have been there for ages. Even if we don’t take them down, they’ll just keep fighting amongst themselves. Besides, they’re barely hanging on at the moment. You can wait until the next life if you hope they’ll overturn the werewolf chieftain! Since they can’t do it themselves, they should stop being a dog in the proverbial manger. They should just hand over their population and land. We’ll do it ourselves!”
Qianye hadn’t imagined that she would speak in such a coarse manner. “First, let’s see how Eiseka does.”
“What if he flushes that Whitebone Duke out?”
Qianye smiled calmly. “Then I’ll go meet him.”
“You!?” Song Hui was stunned.
“Of course, would you rather go instead?” Qianye chuckled.
“But that’s a duke we’re talking about!? I think Eiseka wants to trick you into entering the Jade Sea so that the Whitebone Duke can deal with you.”
Qianye patted her shoulder, saying, “That would make things a lot more convenient.”
Song Hui sighed, knowing that she couldn’t convince Qianye once he had decided. However, her eyes on him grew brighter and brighter, so much so that he could feel his hair standing on end.
Qianye immediately organized the army after returning to the Wolf Fang Fortress, transporting the fifty thousand newly integrated werewolves into the other end of the great corridor. This would serve as the primary fighting force against the Jade Sea. A hundred thousand werewolf soldiers were still undergoing training in the two fortresses, with more coming in still.
The arrival of so many new werewolves didn’t worry Qianye at all, nor did he increase the defenses in the fortress. The two strongholds stood with their gates wide open, or rather, absent. Comparatively, Qianye had stationed over ten thousand mercenaries in Pagoda City, making up a defensive army of over thirty thousand. It was just that the direction they were guarded against was Zheng.
As soon as the thirty-thousand-strong vanguard was assembled, Eiseka set out immediately without even waiting for the main force.
The number of integrated units was limited. Even with the addition of major clans near the entrance of the great corridor, their military force was incomparable to that of the Jade Sea. After the initial chaos, the werewolf tribes of the Jade Sea joined forces and dispatched an interception force of nearly fifty thousand men. At the same time, they started mobilizing troops from the rear.
The tribes that had been banished to the great corridor were practically abandoned people. Be it in terms of resources or fighting power, they were largely inferior to their counterparts in the Jade Sea. The invasion force from the great corridor should be badly defeated even if they held a numbers advantage, to speak nothing of the current situation where the Jade Sea force was bigger.
Hence, the latter began charging from a thousand meters away, paying no heed to their stamina consumption as they launched a torrential attack. They wanted to route the enemy in one indefensible charge.
However, over a dozen gunships rose into the air from behind the great corridor forces and began mowing down the werewolves of the Jade Sea. In addition, the Jade Sea forces realized—as they came within range—that the enemy was lined up in an orderly formation. From what they could remember, the violent werewolf race had never fought in a formation before.
Soon, the Jade Sea vanguard was drowned in a rain of bullets.
By the time they had charged past the death zone and arrived within familiar melee range, half of their comrades had already fallen on the path.
The subsequent hand-to-hand combat taught the werewolves of the Jade Sea how formidable a combat formation was. Their men were like the tides, crashing onto the reef and destroying themselves in the process.
The first large-scale war between the Jade Sea and the great corridor thus ended with a miserable defeat for the former.