"Wyr will lead the cavalry platoon and they'll follow Falcon's cavalry division. I'll lead the infantry when we leave tomorrow afternoon," Cardoj ordered.
"We're leaving so soon?" The platoon jarls were clearly a little surprised. Tens of thousands of men had just arrived in Peterstown after a long and exhausting journey, yet they had to depart after resting for only two days. A few veterans had already figured that it wasn't just as simple as returning home.
Cardoj, seemingly noting the tension in his tent, smiled and said, "Don't worry, we're just backup. We won't be in much danger, I promise!"
Everyone relaxed after hearing what the baron had said. They then discussed their departure and were dismissed after that.
"Wyr, Locke, stay here for a moment," said Cardoj.
Only after almost everyone left did Cardoj say, "You and your cavalry platoon are just going to take a spin with the cavalry division. I'm pretty sure you all will be transferred back soon. Wyr, try your best to not let your cavalry platoon suffer any unnecessary losses."
"Okay," replied Wyr.
At this moment, Locke felt that something wasn't right. Weren't they just returning home? Why did it seem like the baron was implying that they were going to a battle with the cavalry division?
Cardoj didn't say much, so Locke didn't ask him anything. Cardoj was furious. He thought that he was returning to his own domain, but he'd received orders today that they were following Falcon to guard the southern border of their kingdom.
Although Faustian's neighbouring nations were being a little feisty, they hadn't created any disturbances so far. However, Faustian's royal family and nobles wanted to increase their leverage, so they'd sent a garrison from one of their four major divisions to guard the frontiers and even summoned the three major divisions who were in Shalor back to Faustian.
Moreover, they were all elite troops. Putting both cavalry divisions aside, the two infantry divisions were also the trump cards of the two major corps.
The two divisions of Lion that had been transferred back were directly dispatched to the northern border and joined the garrisons in defending the frontier. The two elite divisions from Karaman glared at the Faustians like tigers eyed on their prey, making it difficult for the Faustian elites to sleep in peace.
Meanwhile, the two divisions from Falcon were dispatched to the southern border to face off against the Ligia Union and the Kingdom of Jose. Lion's cavalry division and 1st Division would be enough to keep them at bay.
What made Cardoj angry was that their unit originally belonged to 2nd Division, they had been assigned to carry out their mission with the other two divisions.
The reason their unit could return home earlier than the other divisions was because of Angelina's help. They didn't expect that such good news would suddenly turn into a misfortune.
Luckily, many of the elites knew that their unit had a very close relationship with Angelina. Somebody had already hinted to them to just do it for appearances since they would be transferred back soon.
But how could Cardoj, who'd been in the army for so many years, trust their words? Anything could happen on the battlefield, and before he knew it, they would probably end up becoming cannon fodder.
Their unit had joined the other divisions to carry out their mission this time, and they were definitely the group of men that nobody cared the most.
That was why Cardoj had specifically told Wyr to take good care of the cavalry platoon. Cardoj would be there with the infantrymen, and since he was a noble who was going to be promoted to a viscount, the others would give him face and withdraw their talons.
The cavalry platoon could only rely on a high-rank Knecht like Wyr to deter those who wanted to take advantage of them.
Although Angelina was a big shot, she couldn't stop a direct command issued in the field herself. She was currently far away in Audis, after all.
Word of the transfer of troops spread throughout the entire camp in only half a day. Countless soldiers regret not sneaking out yesterday as they were about to be deployed again soon, and their chief would never allow them to go out and have fun at this time.
Locke and Wyr led the cavalry platoon early in the morning to join up with Lion's cavalry division.
The cavalry division had thousands of cavalrymen, being much more impressive than the mere hundreds of the platoon. The addition of Locke and his platoon to their division was akin to a drop of water added to a pool of water: it made only the slightest ripples.
The cavalry division jarl, donning a full suit of armour, gazed around with his blood-red eyes -- the only visible part of his face from behind his helmet. This division jarl was certainly not someone to mess with.
The division jarl glanced at those who'd just joined them; he let his gaze stay on Wyr for a good while.
"Let's go!" ordered the division jarl. Countless cavalrymen in rows of sixes rushed out of the camp outside Peterstown.
Locke was quite far away from the division jarl, so he couldn't sense his strength. But he could roughly guess that the division jarl was a high-rank Knecht like Wyr. He had a hunch he was much stronger, however.
The cavalry division spent three days on the road. Thousands of cavalrymen sped through the eastern and central parts of Faustian, heading south.
When Locke reached his country, the first thing he breathed in was the dust from the ground that the horses kicked up instead of the fresh air of his home.
Along the way, Locke was lucky enough to see the silhouette of their royal capital, Felor, from a distance, but nothing more.
The cavalry division's current speed was only a little slower than when they were at full speed, which was just right for the horses.
Other than the times when Locke was eating, drinking and sleeping, he spent the past few days riding nonstop. Sometimes, they even had to continue their journey at night, which made Locke wonder whether a war was about to start in the south again.
Actually, a battle wouldn't really break out there. It was just that the Faustian elites couldn't wait to show Ligia what they had up their sleeves.
The cavalry division finally arrived at the southern border of Faustian on the fifth day. The garrison corps' 3rd Division was stationed here, directly opposite the Ligia troops' camp on the other side of the border. The division of cavalrymen was a huge reinforcement to their sparse forces.
On the sixth day, Faustian's army received some orders. The cavalry division that just arrived launched an operation immediately to surround Ligia's troops. The infantry division had also left their original post, advancing towards the border.
Ligia's army retreated when they saw the sudden mobilisation of the Faustian army. It seemed like they didn't want to be entangled in battle.
One party advanced and the other retreated for a week continuously. Faustian's garrisons advanced two hundred miles southwards, roughly a hundred miles into the Ligia Union's borders.
"What's this? Why isn't anyone starting a fight?" Locke held a blade of grass in his mouth as he looked at the enemy camp in the distance curiously.
It was now February, and sprouts were already growing in the warm southern region of Faustian. Locke liked to keep a blade of grass in his mouth for the taste since he was a child.
"They're scared," said Wyr jokingly. Of course, he didn't mean it. He knew that their opponents who were at the opposite side were Ligia's famous Greenlight cavalry division. If they were to go head-to-head with them, the outcome would be a toss-up.
Wyr figured that the reason they didn't dare to engage was internal to the union. As it turned out, there was indeed a conflict within Ligia. There was also something wrong in Karaman that was located in the northeast of Faustian, Gondor in the west, and Jose in the southwest.
During January 1321 of the Aomarian Calendar, Faustian transferred four of its divisions back home after the war with Shalor had ended. Two of them directly arrived at the northern border, while the other two were sent to the southern border. The garrison troops had also dispatched their last division to the western border.
Two divisions from Falcon and a division from the garrison troops faced off Karaman's army at the northern border. Meanwhile, the two divisions from the garrison troops faced off with Gondor's army at the western border. A division from the garrison troops and the other two divisions from Falcon stood against Ligia and Jose at the southern border.
Faustian planned to go into battle against four nations. The mobilisation of their army had sparked controversy in the neighbouring nations. Numerous scholars and military experts thought that the Faustians were crazy.
Faustian, that had just ended a long war, was absolutely incapable of starting another, at least that was what everyone had thought.
But the countries who were involved didn't think of it that way. These nations originally only planned to swipe some of the spoils of Faustian for themselves. Who would've thought that this would cause them to go so far?
Over the past few years of war with Shalor, the neighbouring nations realised the ferocity of Faustian soldiers. They didn't want to provoke foes as troublesome as them.
Lion's infantry division only arrived at the southern border a week after Locke and the other cavalrymen were there, and their addition greatly increased Faustian military presence. When Ligia's army saw this, they retreated further, but the Faustian army didn't advance and just stayed in their place.
Karaman, Gondor, Jose, Ligia and other farther nations who were also involved finally convened a summit. There were ten diplomats from the participating countries.
Of course, soldiers like Locke wouldn't know the final outcome of the meeting. Anyway, Locke and his battalion could only leave the southern Faustian border after spending half a month there.
"It's an order from Margrave Marmen himself," explained Cardoj.
As soon as Cardoj received the order to transfer, he began to gather the troops and was ready to leave. Although he knew that there wouldn't be a battle taking place there, he didn't want to stay there for any longer. They were on the edge of clashing and it reminded Cardoj the days of the siege of Audis.
Locke and his battalion left the border and headed back to their hometown as the other soldiers looked at them with envy.
They were really returning home this time. The southern border was originally within Dor province, and they were just a few days away from their hometown. All the soldiers from Cardoj's unit were eager to return home.