|Author: Carrot Sauce||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 3282 characters|
|Translator: Silva||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 2238 words|
The never-ending mountain range before the troops was several times taller than Mt. Aoame. As the troops gazed upon the mountain range that seemed to cut off the Heavens from the hilltop, it gave them a shudder.
Although everyone was fully aware it was the territory of the monsters, the enemy of mankind, the towering mountains still made them feel so very insignificant.
“Even with the strength of a mid-tier sword saint, I still feel like a lamb in a tiger’s den. It feels like I would be easily torn apart by the ancient demons in the deep mountains and swallowed whole.”
Gazing at the unending mountains from afar, even Lily felt excitement and reverence.
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Only the truly strong could sense the boundless and daunting nature of the mountains.
Not a flicker of light could be seen in Odawara that was located right before the unending mountains. It was 4 AM in the wee hours, the time where everyone was in deep sleep.
Even from afar, they could feel the sinister murderous aura coming from the Odawara. It was clear to everyone that a cruel massacre had taken place here.
Ashikaga Makoto urged the horse to step forward with a few generals in tow, then she declared, “The walls of Odawara stand strong, despite having a numerical advantage by the tens of thousands, it won’t be easy to raid the city. If they focused on defense, even if we gathered a hundred thousand strong troops from throughout the Eastern Nation, we might not necessarily be able to take it down immediately. Moreover, it is hard to predict what the generals of the Taira clan would do, as such, we will carry out a night raid!”
Lily nodded silently. Lord Kamakura, Minamoto no Yoritomo, was supposedly the elder brother of the Genji’s legendary hero, Yoshitsune. It was strange how he was able to live in good health for a few hundred years but to have lorded the Eastern Nations for all these years. It seemed that he not only possessed surpassing strength but also a long lifespan. He had proved himself worthy of the title of Lord Kamakura with his visionary and sagacious strategies and tactics.
Lord Kamakura’s strategy was indeed brilliant, however, for some reason, Lily couldn’t come to terms with it. Why would someone so high and mighty resort to such a strategy and ignore the code of chivalry? Or could it be that war and chivalry couldn’t be put on the same page? Lily could only take it as she still didn’t understand enough to question Lord Kamakura’s tactics.
“Uesugi Rei, Itagaki Nobuyoshi, although your cavalry units are strong and brave, they have no strategic value in raiding a city. Lead your troops to the southeast and southwest of Odawara respectively and intercept any reinforcements of the Hojo clan,” Ashikaga Makoto had issued a military order.
Rei and Nobuyoshi acknowledged the order.
“Lil’ Lyn, although victory is all but certain, it is still hard to predict what will happen in the midst of war, you must be careful. I have faith in you.” Rei turned her horse to face Lily and said.
Lily looked at the silvery figure riding atop the dark horse and said, “You too, Sister Uesugi.”
“Nngh, you can just call me Sis, you know?” Uesugi Rei left a casual remark before leading the cavalrywomen to their designated location.
Lily noticed that each and every one of those cavalrywomen was slender and beautiful. The horse they were riding was also especially tall. They had a neat appearance and the way they poised their long-handled jintachi made them look valiant and formidable. Their pace was fast, yet also steady and taciturn, so it was obvious that they weren’t going at full speed. Despite that, however, they were already several times faster than the common cavalry unit. Their formation looked like an azure dagger piercing through the darkness of night!
“Humph!” Shimizu harrumphed in her heart when she noticed Lily’s fixed gaze. Once the war concluded, she was determined to ask her where she had gone in the night and what she had done.
“Minamoto no Shimuzu,” Ashikaga Makoto commanded.
“It is extremely tough to breach Odawara, we need a samurai with adequate strength to scale the wall and open the gate from within. Once the gate has been occupied, the main troops will march into the city. This is the key strategy to capture Odawara, I shall pass this mission to the samurai of Genji,” said Ashikaga Makoto.
“Understood,” Shimizu nodded with a cold glint in her eyes.
She then looked towards Minamoto no Kenki.
He nodded with a smile, “Lady Shimizu, Lord Kamakura is looking forward to your achievement in this battle. Although I am the Supreme Commander, Lord Kamakura sent me here to support you. I will wait for your good news in the main camp. In case the mission didn’t go well, I will personally lead the troops to help. Once the army has marched into the city after you have seized control of the city gate, you can rush into the inner city and face off with Hojo Dijon at the Odawara Castle. You’ll obtain a first class merit if you are able to kill Dijon!”
Minamoto no Shimizu was the samurai with the greatest prospects in the Genji clan. There were even rumors that Lord Kamakura intended to make her his successor. If she was to obtain a first class merit in this battle, her position in the Genji would become unshakable.
However, this wasn’t the same as weeding out the Fuma clan, to seize Odawara and kill Hojo Dijon were easier said than done.
Accepting the order, Shimizu, Lily, Shiu, and several hundred samurai and foot soldiers of the Genji set off under the curtain of night. They extinguished all the torches, slinked through the fields on foot, and approached Odawara City’s walls stealthily.
Odawara was backed by a range of mountains, and the city itself was established on top of a hill. The troops slowly moved through the shrubs with rustling sounds, stealthily arriving before the towering city gate. The samurai’s helmet glinted under the cold moonlight and the flags in the formation were faintly illuminated.
Although Shimizu was a little bothered by the matter between Rei and Lily, this battle was too important for her to be distracted by such thoughts. Shimizu was not interested in power and wealth, but in order to fight against those who attempted to hunt the mirror girls and to complete the first mission the mirror had entrusted to her, the more power, wealth, and resources she had, the better. This battle held a significant meaning for Shimizu.
Shifting her gaze towards the top of the rampart, she saw only two soldiers on patrol.
Then she whispered, “We need someone to scale the wall without being noticed, take care of the sentinels from within and open the city gate.”
“I’ll go, Sister Shimizu!” Lily volunteered.
“No, master, let me!” Shiu interrupted.
“What are you saying,” Lily softly reprimanded, “You are a ninja, there’s no need for you to take the frontline in a raid. Just stay at the back obediently.”
“You’re wrong, master. Leaping onto the roofs and vaulting over walls without being discovered is the specialty of the ninjas. Master may be more powerful, but Shiu is still better in this aspect.”
Shimizu then said, “Shiu is right. Shiu, form a small squad with a few of my ninjas, assassinate the sentinels, and then, open the gate. Lily, take the elite samurai with you and lie in wait for an ambush at the gate. Once the gate opens, charge in and secure the area.”
“All right, leave it to me,” Lily naturally planned to obey Shimizu’s orders.
As such, Shiu and a few ninjas climbed onto the huge tree and zipped across branches to approach the rampart stealthily.
A few petite figures skipped from the tree onto the city wall and dispatched the sentinels with a few shurikens. Lily and the samurais came out from the cover of the bushes and positioned themselves right before the gate.
Lily signaled Shiu with a hand gesture and the ninja squad proceeded to open the city gate.
Then, half a minute later, the presence of spirit power could be felt from within the city gate, followed by the sounds of weapons clashing, and even the shriek of a woman.
“This is bad!” Lily was alarmed, “That scream sounds like it came from Shimizu’s female ninja, Shiu is in danger!”
However, the city gate was still tightly shut, the samurai was at a loss for what to do.
Lily suddenly rushed before the gate and shouted, “All of you, move aside!”
The ferocity in Lily’s voice shocked the samurai, and made them move back in succession even though they weren’t sure what the little girl with revealing armor before them was going to do.
Since it had come to this, she couldn’t give a damn anymore and just had to do it!
Lily unsheathed the Crescent Moon and steadily approached the ten-meter tall and thick city gate. A crimson aura enveloped her body, evocating the image of blossoming amaryllis buds.
On the surface of the blade, the beautiful spirit runes glowed with a blood-red light. And occasionally one could catch a vague glimpse of a Demon Hound in the form of golden light flitting across the blade.
Lily spread her legs and took a horse stance. She raised the Crescent Moon and concentrated all her spirit power onto the blade, causing the air around her to form a vortex.
Her gaze suddenly turned sharp as she yelled, “Haaaah!”
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With a powerful swing of Crescent Moon, a mournful yet enchanting crimson sword light had immediately set the night sky ablaze!
The resplendent and savage sword light struck the huge wooden gate diagonally and made it explode into bits and pieces. This also caused thick logs to scatter at random, and some of them even crashed into the unfortunate guards on the other side of the gate.
A strong gust whizzed past, causing the ponytail of the red-armored Lily to flutter wildly in the wind. The friendly samurai behind her couldn’t even stand straight as the wind blew past them. All of them were covering their eyes but were peering dumbfoundedly at the girl before them.
“S-so powerful!” One of the aged Genji samurai exclaimed, “They say that Lady Shimizu’s training sister is a Blade Maiden, as expected… those who are able to forge a bond of sisters with Lady Shimizu wouldn’t be an ordinary person!”
Since the door was already opened, Lily just uttered a single word, “Charge!”
Without waiting for those behind her, she charged into Odawara by herself, leaving behind crimson afterimages.
The samurai only started to react after she was gone. They raised their weapons and followed after Lily with a war cry while a few soldiers also set fire to the city gate to signal the main troops.
As soon as Lily charged in, she began sprinting as she sought Shiu.
The city was poorly lit with only a few torches here and there, so it was hard to tell the situation within the city.
“Swoosh! Swoosh!” A few arrows found their mark the moment Lily entered through the broken gate.
Lily suddenly made a sidestep and avoided the arrows. At the same time, she looked around and found a few archers wearing eboshi hats on top of two roofs.
Lily switched her sword with the bow, nocked the arrow and aimed at the archers. With a smooth and fluid motion, she shot a few arrows in succession.
Although Lily’s mastery of archery wasn’t that high, she had colossal strength. The bow she used couldn’t be pulled back even with the strength of a bull. As such, the arrows broke through the sound barrier as they flew towards their targets.
There was no chance for the archers at the rooftop to survive once she had aimed at them.
“Splash!” Due to the exceedingly high momentum, the sturdy grade 4 arrow snapped off the torso of an archer and disappeared into the depths of the night. The archer’s torso flew across the sky before plopping down onto the street.
The other two had a similarly awful fate. One of them had their body blown into pieces, while the other had their head pinned on the wall of Odawara Castle several hundred meters away.
That scene had scared the other archers lying in wait senseless. They immediately jumped down the roofs and scattered like roaches.
Lily had a policy of not killing the soldiers who had given up and chosen to flee, so she let them escape.
At this time, Lily found Shiu sprinting across a nearby lane. She was running in between the houses while using the shurikens to control the crowd. A general of Hojo and a few dozen pikemen were hot on her tail, so she was in a very dangerous situation.
Lily immediately broke into a sprint and launched herself towards the Hojo general like a ball of fire. When the general turned around, he saw a red figure flash before him, but it was already too late as Lily had already drawn her sword out.
“Pfff!” Followed by a spray of blood, the Hojo general had been cleaved in half, armor and all!