Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Youjo Senki Volume 2 Chapter 1

The Dacian War

Translator: SifaV6
Editing: JcqC, CWilliams, Skythewood

In modern warfare, the differences between an advanced and a regressive nation is revealed through the measurement of casualties.
──Hans von Zettois <Records of the Dacian War>

C.E 1924 September 24, Ransylvania Province Turao County, Imperial Army field training grounds
The very first inquiry made by Wing Commander Degurechaff was regarding the aerial situation of the battlefront.
The moment she heard that there was no contact with any enemy air units, Wing Commander Degurechaff couldn’t help but tilt her head at the inconceivable reply from the communications officer within the military headquarter. Holding back her doubts, she asked once more. Were there any problems with the communication?
Towards such inquires, the communications officer earnestly stated that there weren’t any problems in either of the wired or wireless communication, and definite contacts have been made with the FAC (Front Air Controller) from the Control Tower in Dacia.
The second this was said, the communications officer felt a chill run down his spine… …this Major Degurechaff that was standing before him had actually smiled. And it was a smile which contained absolute delight. All of a sudden, it was as if an inexplicable feeling of astonishment and surprise had rippled across the entire headquarters.
After all, at that time, not a single soul could have known that such an outcome would occur. If it was the present me, perhaps I too would have grinned the moment I see that smile again. That was the smile of a predator catching sight of its prey, a smile that a hungry wolf would show when in front of its game.
From deep down, Tanya couldn’t help but harbor second thoughts towards having encountered such a stroke of fortune, yet nevertheless, in a logical sense, this was without a doubt a fact which had been stated and confirmed, causing her to become immersed within the explosive feeling known as joy. This was the kind of situation which could be described as being overwhelmed with emotions. When faced with such opportune moments, it could only be considered as expected for one to be unable to contain their smiles.
A battlefield without any enemy aerial presence?    
That’s right, without any enemy aerial presence!!!
Such a reality was just simply too good to be true, at the same time, frightening for one to think about. After all, just how many of the soldiers back in Norden had hoped for their side to have the advantage in air superiority!?
Yet in Dacia, right before Tanya’s eyes, in front of such inexplicable statement of “no enemy aerial presence was spotted”, something which simply should not have occurred in any modern warfare, it has basically confirmed that their side will achieve complete air supremacy.
A battlefield that contains not a single hateful air unit? Truthfully speaking… …who could have possibly known that the Dacia Grand Duchy military was as naïve to this point!?

Although she did not have the intention of underestimating the enemy opponent, this time, it seemed Tanya had clearly overestimated their capabilities. It has always been stated that the battlefield was full of surprises, but who could have imagined that the surprise this time would be this pleasant? 

To think that fate ended up making such a roundabout turn! That’s right, it was in a literal sense, a turnaround.         

It was recorded on official documents that Tanya’s date of birth was September 24th.

This truly could be considered as the first birthday present she received since rebirth. For such a wonderful day like this to come by, Tanya almost felt the urge to act out like a child and go wild. Without any further thoughts, and with a face that had turned red from excitement, she subconsciously uttered the following phrase.

“O God, thank you for blessing me with such opportune moments.”

This was something that when under normal circumstances, she would never ever blurt out. However, this much alone was able to reveal just how much emotions Tanya had felt as a commanding officer.

Having established the fact that they held absolute air supremacy. To be able to fully comprehend the significance of such matters, perhaps at this moment, it was only Tanya herself. It was precisely because of this that had caused her without any hesitancy to joyously skip when departing.
While in a separate scene, a cramp could be seen forming on the face of Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen as he read through the report detailing the march of a 600,000 strong Dacian army. In his eyes, such an ill-natured report had came at the worst timing possible, giving him nothing but headache.

Similar thoughts were shared among with the rest of the personnel situated within the military headquarter, which had further caused those that saw a happily skipping figure half dashing as though in a rush to debrief her men on their next sortie, to seriously doubt whether they had been hallucinating.

If someone was to ask, for the 203rd Aerial Mage Wing which had survived through the ordeal of getting booted off the cliffs of the Alpine mountain under the pretext of training, exactly what else is missing, Tanya would without any thoughts respond with the words "combat experience". Although it could be said that other factors such as the cooperation and coordination between members of the Wing as well as the experiences gained from having conducted various different exercises are also important matters which should not be overlooked, but more prominently for Tanya, the single most essential aspect that should never be ignored when formulating a newly designated unit was undergoing the baptism of an actual battle.

After all, no matter how long a unit was to train, for rookies that have never gone through the baptism of an actual battle, mistakes and such are bound to happen the moment they enter their first fight.

Putting the matter of the south east region aside, considering the fact that the Turao Field Training Ground was situated in the opposite direction of where the main battle will be taking place, without a doubt the current location will remain peaceful and safe throughout the duration of the conflict. Hence it could be said that it will be undeniable that the members of the Wing will likely be infected by the relaxed atmosphere unique to places situated in the rear. For those precious human resources to be easily wasted like this was simply unacceptable.

And so, when Tanya received the order of imparting a warning to the intruding Dacia, the only thought which occurred to her was that it will serve as a means for providing a bit of pressure to her unit. After all, when taking into account of the differences in military power and national influence, and the fact that the Empire is the kind of nation that would not hesitate in displaying the might of its military strength. It only takes a bit of thinking to conclude that Dacia will undoubtedly be put into its place. Such train of thoughts was completely reasonable to make.

It was precisely because of this that Tanya was unable to understand why such a thoughtless proclamation of war was given. All for the sake of international harmony, they decided on risking the chance of losing of their own territory? Who would have thought that such idiots actually existed!? Tanya couldn’t help but to doubt whether or not this was all real. Let’s just hope that there won’t be another report coming in later saying it was all a mistake, ordering them to cease taking action.

Regardless, although it was uncertain if it could be counted as a blessing or not for Tanya, towards things that could not be understood with logic, she was someone that would not have cared the least whether or not a war would result from such things.

“The 203rd Aerial Mage Wing will now enter combat ready status. Has there been any response from the border Command Post?”

Numerous military personnel could be seen agitatedly dashing in the background, with constant shouting being heard coming from those with phones and other wireless communication devices, continuously attempting to establish contact with various other places. The current state of the headquarters was clattered noise and a sense of urgency.

“First lieutenant Weiss! You are to take command in gathering the troops as well as to secure the necessary ammunition and supplies.”

“Major, we just received the latest information of the battlefield from the 7th Air Fleet. The frequency of the Command Post was also provided.”
“Immediately make further inquiries. Also, send Second Lieutenant Serbiakof to me.”
Ordering a stop to the ongoing military exercise, Tanya efficiently gave instructions on the handling of the cleaning up process. A slight frown then formulated on her face as she glanced towards Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen who bore a look as if he had already anticipated that such events were going to happen. Even though it had been hinted, the fact that having known there was a possibility that the neighbouring nation Dacia might invade, Tanya wished she had at least been given the opportunity to visit the key country beforehand either as a military attaché or as a liaison officer prior to the start of the conflict. Only that way, would she be able to gain a proper grasp of the key strategic locations that would be ideal for bombing.
“… … It really was such an unexpected invasion! Should I be acting surprised, Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen?”
“Please do me away without the sarcasm, Major. For now, I want you to initiate delay tactics.”
Due to her unit being part of the General Staff Office, various high ranking military officials have had visited Tanya’s current base of operations. For these officials, what they mostly focused on was information relating to Dacia, such was what Tanya had speculated. And it was precisely because of this that when the moment alarms had been raised from the border, Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen had hastily made his way from the General Staff Office carrying with him a sealed military order.
“Huh? Delay tactics? In other words, Lieutenant Colonel, you wish for my Wing to delay the advance of the Dacian Grand Duchy Army?”
“I’m aware just how outrageous this order is, but someone has to do this, and currently whether it is to mobilize the Eastern Army or call in reinforcements from Central, multiple battlefronts will still need to be maintained…”
However, even for a newly appointed Wing Commander, the feeling of being grossly underestimated was something that could only be described as being unbearable. According to the latest intelligence, the only force that had crossed over the border so far was the Dacian Grand Duchy Army which consisted of 600,000 troops. That’s right, only ground troops. In the mountainous terrain, it was almost as if they were an army of boy scouts having a picnic.
“Please forgive my interruptions, but the Dacian Grand Duchy Army is a pre-modern military force composed of just conscripted civilians without having undergone any proper military training…”
After her promotion, from the information Tanya had gathered during her time researching while learning the Dacian language, the Dacian Grand Duchy was an insignificant nation that hasn’t even consolidated a stable foundation yet. Even though the enemy possessed superior numbers, for an army which was only on the level of boy scouts and biscuits, if delaying their advancement was the best that could be achieved, then the Empire will end up becoming the laughing stock of the whole world.
“…Forget about mobilizing forces from other battlefronts, even if just utilizing the four local Divisions, it will be enough to completely decimate the enemy. And if it was my unit, we are fully capable to serve as the vanguard in repelling the enemy invasion.”
“… …Do you fully comprehend the words that you just said, Major?”
“Yes, I understand. In my humble opinion, this is the equivalent of utilizing a heavily armed military to crush a bunch of boy scouts, and perhaps it would even be simpler than that.”

It wasn’t even at the level of part-time soldiers or reserved forces of National Guards, rather, it was much more similar to the Korean People’s Army comprised of conscripted farmers. A gathering of armed mobs that lacked discipline, a single blow would be enough to cripple them as a whole. If the Empire’s military was unable to annihilate them, then Tanya would feel ashamed to call herself a soldier. After all, the military forces of modernised nations are fully equipped with the means to deliver explosive terror on a moment’s notice. How could the power of a fully militarized  modern day nation like the Empire not decimate a local gathering of conscripts?

There lies an absolute margin in military strength between a modernized and an outdated military.
“The only command listed in the sealed envelope was to ‘adopt the most appropriate counter measures in regards to the defense of the national border.’”
A situation which permitted the taking of independent actions. In other words, one was to select the most appropriate response to the situation on hand. This was one of the bare minimum skills required for a commander, and at the same time, a benchmark method used for evaluation. For a heavily armed military faction to be scared witless into retreating from a mob of ruffians coming in for a picnic, just the thought alone would leave behind an eternal stain that could not be washed clean, and doing so would definitely result in forever becoming ridiculed in history.    
Since having already been given the mission objectives, it became necessary to select the most appropriate actions to take that falls within principle. Failure only implied a lack in talent. No matter what, Tanya refused to be labelled as a person of incompetence.
“Has there been any signs showing that Dacia intends to engage in long distance artillery bombing or aerial combat nearing the border, Lieutenant Colonel?”
“No, there hasn’t been any.”
If this was a case where a 600,000 strong Union or Republican army with full air support were invading, Tanya would without any hesitancy call for reinforcements. However, in the case of an invasion that lacked the sound of artillery and the effort of securing air superiority, there could only be a limit to how much worry it would cause for the ones being invaded. It can only be described as a situation where the side that had more numbers, out of the goodness of their hearts, purposefully aligned themselves as the perfect targets for practice.
Let experience serve as the best type of teacher, and impart onto those primitive fellows the difference in the technological gap between the two nations.
“That is the level of where the enemy is at. In that case, we’ll just have to let these savages have a taste of the hammer known as civilization.”     
And properly instruct them the strategic threat that aerial mages bring onto the battlefield after achieving air supremacy.
“My troops are fully armed and disciplined. Please witness how we decimate the enemy army.”
The level of modern warfare in the current era has long reached a point of requiring a nation to pour their every effort and resource in order to gain an upper hand. Education, training, logistics etc. The differences in these areas between Great Powers and non-major powers are absolute, history could be used as the greatest example to testify this. Allow me to take on the role of a Conquistador, and present to you the scene of crushing defeat of the Dacian army.
“Are you aware that just their vanguard alone consists of three major Divisions?”
Many complex arrows which indicated the selected routes of the advancing Dacian army were marked on the map. Among the forces that have crossed over into the Empire’s territory, the three Divisions which had penetrated the furthest appear to be comprised of elite troops that belong to the standing army.
Reality really does seem to be the greatest medium for conveying jokes. How utterly ridiculous. For the vanguard that serve as the face of the Dacian army, to turn out to be just some normal infantry Division that lacked even fortified or mechanized units. In Tanya’s eyes, this was the equivalent of revealing just how pitiful the opponent nation’s national strength truly was.
Although the natural laws had always dictated that this was a world where the strong devour the weak, for the first time since rebirth did a slight sense of guilt surface within Tanya’s heart, feeling that this was nowhere near what could be described as a fair match.  
“But this can’t even be considered as a proper conflict, only on the level of delivering punishments. Allow me to teach these guys the true meaning of an army and what warfare looks like.”
After all, it was just three infantry Divisions at the level of amateurs. That was all there was to it. Even though Conquistadors had their horses and guns, they still had to fight on land. Our side only needs to shoot from above to win. This could almost be described as conducting a military exercise using live ammo and premium targets.
“And also, how far should I advance?”
“If the enemy’s resistance turn out to be far too weak, accidentally pushing beyond the logistical limit could also become a problem that needs to be considered.”
“Hold on a moment, Major. Just what in the heck are you talking about?”

“I’m discussing in regards to how we intend on educating these foolish Dacians. In my humble opinion, I believe it is best to allow these guys to understand exactly how high a teaching fee of the teacher known as ‘experience’ is.”

Very good, it is almost time for battle. Or rather, it might be better for it to be called the time for bullying the weak.

After all, this was a situation that could only be described as a weak enemy presenting themselves on a platter, which had caused Tanya to inadvertently lick her lips in anticipation. When compared to the pollution filled skies of Rhine, the arctic cold of Norden, the mild and stable climate of the southern-eastern region where Dacia is situated at would definitely provide the perfect weather for flying. As it is currently in the days of September, right before sunset would probably be the most opportune moment to strike. Tanya who was deep in thought, returned to alertness after seeing the figure of her adjutant half sprinting towards her. Looks like it is finally time for work.

“Second Lieutenant Serbiakoff reporting for duty.”   

“Good. How is the situation of the Wing, Second Lieutenant?”

“Everyone has regrouped. First Lieutenant Weiss is currently going over the ammunitions while explaining the overall situation.”

The entire situation was proceeding rather smoothly. Everything was moving according to plan. Feeling satisfied, Tanya inadvertently revealed a smile for a brief moment before forcefully tightening her expressions again. Even primary school children were aware that before arriving home it was considered as a long hike. To think that she would have revealed this much excitement even prior to departure, perhaps she was treating things far too lightly.

However, from what Tanya had seen of the reactions by those within the headquarters, even if she did not wish to admit this, it appears that the majority do not possess the same outlook as her in regards to the current situation.

And the central figure behind this pessimistic concave was without any doubt, the anxiety driven Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen who was aimlessly looking over at Tanya with a worried expression. It appears that on the desk of the General Staff Office, the overly bloated number of 600 000 remained as the primary cause of misconception and fear. Although the General Staff Office was filled with highly talented individuals, they have been away from the frontlines for far too long. Tanya couldn’t help but to lament, despite the fact that deep down from within, she did not wish to admit, nevertheless it was a reality that Tanya could not deny. As such, after nodding her head in satisfaction at the report provided by her adjutant, Tanya made the gesture as if saying ‘leave it all to me’ as a showcase to Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen, placing her own tiny fist before her chest.

The troops that were previously undergoing a military exercise had been reassembled in a battle ready state, with their equipment and ammunition refurbished. Although there were still signs of fatigue from the training, it wasn’t to a degree that would affect conducting battle. Very good.

“Attention! The Wing Commander will now give instructions!”   

A textbook grade military salute, with both heels closed and the arm turned precisely at 45 degree angle, was executed by First Lieutenant Weiss. By his command, the members of the Wing quickly shuffled into attention, with their feet closed, head raised and their chest puffed. Seeing such orderly execution put in place, Tanya couldn’t help but reveal a smile on her face. Regardless of who, it could not be disclaimed that a unique yet fascinating charm exists within the act of order and regulation.

“Thank you for your hard work, Lieutenant. And to all members of the Wing, listen carefully, we’re about to begin a new war. Or rather… something akin to that of war.”

Was it precisely because of this? Although Tanya was not aware of it herself, she had walked up to the stage with an extremely cheerful and happy expression, speaking in a delightful manner.  

“Today is my birthday. Perhaps it was because of knowing this, as the lot of you may have heard, the kind and gracious Dacia Grand Duchy had generously decided to gift us the targets that we needed for practice, as a surprise birthday present.”

The live targets that Tanya had always wanted, to think that the kind-hearted uncles in Dacia would actively take care of this matter for her, how truly wonderful that there exists such altruistic people like this.

“Everyone, be it the use of guns or spells as means to eradicate the enemy, it matters the least to me.”

An unilateral one way slaughter from above. In a situation where the achieved air superiority was even greater than that of the Great Marianas Turkey Shoot, the primary focus of the battle would most likely be on ‘how to achieve the most disproportional victory possible’.  

<TL: The aerial part of the battle of the Philippine Sea was nicknamed the Great Marianas Turkey Shoot by American aviators for the severely disproportional loss ratio inflicted upon Japanese aircraft by American pilots and anti-aircraft gunners.>

“Let us teach these bunch of ruffians that dare to invade the soils of the Empire, the hammer known as death.”

As such, Tanya made the gesture of clenching her fist towards the direction of the Dacian army encompassed in her mind, shouting the phrase “and crush them”. Let’s go and crush the enemy. The conviction flared within Tanya’s eyes, anyone could easily see it at a glance.

What was heard was a bellow that could to be interpreted by its literal meaning, which was to act as the vanguard of the Imperial Army, and to absolutely crush the enemy opponent. The outcome was already taken for granted, the order given was as if hinting that an opponent of this degree.

“One last thing to take note of is, while I’m not exactly certain, but the targets this time around will likely strike back… I think. Although I don’t believe any of you would be foolish enough to get shot down, it would still be good to pay attention. Well then, the live-ammo exercise will now begin. Gentlemen, it’s sports time.”

This was a manhunt, and it could literally be considered as a form of sport.

Or it may be interpreted as an act of kicking down the heroic endeavors of Don Quixote. After all, the opponents this time around are the brave heroes who dared to go against the monster known as technological advancement using pre-modern weaponry.  

Aside from the logistic personnel and the few from the General Staff Office remaining behind in base, Tanya brought forth the full combat potential of her Wing and set off as the representative vanguard of the Imperial Military’s Rapid Reaction Force. The target this time was the vanguard of the Dacian army that have crossed over the national borders, which consisted of three Divisions.

Once airborne, each member of the Wing took up to their assigned position in a well-practiced manner, forming an assault formation as they flew in a uniformed manner, the flawless execution which reflected the depth of their training had caused Tanya to feel as though all of her previous hard work had finally came into fruition.

Along the way, it did not take long before establishing contact with the Border Guards of the Imperial Military that were on the retreat. Based on the latest report that was obtained, Tanya was finally convinced of one thing.

Without a doubt, the brains of the Dacian army have already fossilized and are still stuck on pre-nineteenth century concepts. Moments later, Tanya’s Wing which was making amendments to their travel routes while sweeping the ground with their trigger ready finally caught sight of the crowd of advancing buffoons on the distant horizon.

The opponents had even made the effort of dressing affectionately in bright and colourful uniforms as they arranged in a densely packed formation. The actions they took clearly revealed their flawed mentality which had strayed behind by the passage of time, it was as the thought of being attacked from air by mages had never occurred in their mind. They could be described as the perfect prey for hunting, while at the same time, an absolute waste of human resources. A nation that was unable to make efficient use of such a significant quantity of human resource was simply much too pitiful to think of.

Regardless, the duty of the Imperial soldiers was to lay waste to these pitiful youths and young adults. The sorrows of the widows and the lamentations of the elderly, these troublesome things are best to be left for the foolish heads of the Grand Duchy to worry over.
“Aconitum 01 to all troops. Commence operation. Teach these guys the true meaning of war!”
Dispatching three of the four squadrons and launch a strike from three separate directions, this was one of the most standard textbook-wise strategies employed for commencing air-to-ground assaults. The one thing that could be considered as both worthy to celebrate yet at the same time as an irritable annoyance was that one of the squadrons will be left without any tasks to perform. In typical situations, there would always be an enemy squadron or two coming in to defend their troops, as such it was necessary to reserve a squadron for aerial combat… yet this time around there wasn’t a single thing to do.

“To all Squadron Captains, I’m expecting you all to fulfil the minimum quota of combat achievements.”


Even though Tanya had the desire to keep a squadron behind as a reserve force, from the way the battle was proceeding, it almost seemed as if it will become a wasted effort. Through the precise yet agile maneuvers that the squadrons had taken as they launched their assault, they were met with little or barely any anti-air resistance at all. Simply from the way Tanya had hovered and watched as her subordinates bombarded away the enemies on the ground, it might serve as grounds for her to be labeled as a salary thief.

“It’s becoming more and more bothersome, adjutant. There’s nothing to do.”

Although Tanya doesn’t consider herself to be a workaholic or a battle-thirsty maniac, in a situation where others around her were busy working all the while Tanya herself was not, from this alone it was enough to make her feel troubled over how others might view her in their eyes. It has only been two short months since the formulation of her Wing, a Wing that has received substantial amounts of attention from those in the General Staff Office, as such, even Tanya had felt the urge to put on a strong performance and actively head out to seek appropriate military accomplishments.

“... and I had even resolved myself for a long and bitter struggle.”

“To think that you would feel pressure from three mere divisions, it will ruin the image of someone who had returned alive from Rhine, Second Lieutenant.”

“About that, Major… it is 「Three Divisions」after all. It’s cases like this that often makes me wonder… about how Major’s common sense, is a bit, um ...no, please forget about it.”

Ahh, so that's what it was about, Tanya finally understood slightly in regards to the words said by Second Lieutenant Serbiakof. One should always use the correct terminology. She recalled back on the scene of referring the vanguard Dacian army as 「Three Divisions」.

The odd phrasing of words and the hesitancy that was shown, was it perhaps directed towards her choice of words? … ... In a way it could be said that such matters could not be denied. It seems that one truly must not overlook in regards to the smears of post-structuralism. Relying on the natural language as a process to determine the weightily-matters of things can be rather deadly at times. Hence, it is necessary to undergo decomposition and have the misunderstandings fixed before it is too late.

“... My apologizes, Second Lieutenant Serbiakof. It appears you were right.”

“Um, yes?”

“Ah, correctly speaking, it is better to describe them as a group of thugs numbering just a bit over 50 000. If incorrectly defined, it will result in misunderstandings. Good grief, it appears I truly made a mistake.”

From the looks of things, Second Lieutenant Serbiakof and others had truly readied their resolve, mistakenly believing that this battle would be a tough and hard-fought one. Before the incoming enemies, to have the resolve of bitterly fighting till the end can be considered as a mentality that was praiseworthy. However, it would perhaps be good to repeat this once more, the Dacian Grand Duchy military is an ancient relic of the past that should have long been whittled away by the passage of time. To think that I had committed the mistake of calling them as divisions, Tanya couldn’t help but to reflect upon her previous actions.

This very battle will most likely be regarded by the world as the beginning to the World War. Even regarding the threat of aviation forces, it will only be after this battle that the majority of soldiers and officers around the world will come to realize this fact. After all, it was natural that in previous times, the people’s attentions were focused only on the two-dimensional side of the battlefield, they have yet to realize the true worth of the skies in a three-dimensional war theatre.

“Very good. It is time for us to join the fray. Headquarter squadron, follow me. Let’s go and deliver punishment to the enemy command post.”

As such, from Tanya’s perspective, in a battlefield where one side controlled absolute air supremacy were to strike against opponents without any air support, the outcome would already be set to stone. On the other hand, this further caused her to feel that the worries of Second Lieutenant Serbiakof and the others was a rather refreshing spectacle to see. When talking about the key points to focus on in this battle, the strategy is quite simple really, one only need to blast away the brains of the enemy opponent and then proceed towards engaging in a wide area cleanup sweep, which in a literal sense, would be to turn the remaining staggering enemy forces into ashes.

“Follow after me and forward!”

Accompanied by the rapid descend from above, was the dropping of grenades imbued with spells. The goal was to let the grenades fragment and explode above the enemies heads, allowing the shrapnels to directly pierce into the bodies of these infantry soldiers that didn’t even possess helmets. Not even having the time to observe the fates of these soldiers, the squadron immediately followed after with the activation of another spell, and looked for the most appropriate locations to strike, channelling all of their powers into their shots.

The results of such actions of targeting areas of high enemy concentration summoned forth chaos onto the battlefield as opposing infantry forces frantically scattered away in disorder. Although the movements of Tanya’s squadron couldn’t be completely described as unhindered as they still received periodic moments of disorganized resistance, the only time when infantry rifle fire can be regarded as a threat to the protective membranes of a mage’s defense was when they were under the assault of highly coordinated concentrated fire.

In a battlefield where not even the sound of heavy machine gun fire could be heard, it could only be considered as a place of absolute hell for the infantry units while for the aerial units it was heaven.

“The Dacian army is reacting way too slowly. Truly, just how slow could they be? … … All squadrons, report.”

“Everything in order, Major.” “No problems encountered.” “It was said that this is a live-ammo exercise, right?”

“How strange. Aren’t we the ones that’s being invaded?”

Due to just how pathetic the current situation had become, causing some to even starting to wonder if the attacking and defending positions have been mixed up, the scene that was unfolding at the moment could only be described with the word idiotic. Even those fools from the Federation that had crossed over the border without making any prior announcements, once battle truly started, they still properly fought in a serious manner. Yet the Dacian Grand Duchy Army that had seemed to be full of vigor and had actively made an official declaration of war, to think that they had turned out to be this useless.

“How unbelievable. Did these guys end up making a massive blunder? Thinking that they wouldn’t receive any retaliations when going on the offensive?”

“What a troublesome bunch truly.”  

Even in a common fist fight, as long as one struck out they would naturally expect to be hit back. Not to mention that in a fight between the militarized troops of nations armed for war, even if it was just a casual muck around, one would still be required to bring out weaponry on the class of heavy artilleries at the very least. These Dacian fools truly need to learn a thing or two from Frederick the Great.  

Having to fight against opponents such as these, it almost made Tanya to feel as if she ended up being the one who suffered more for it. Ever since she was dragged away from her ordinary peaceful life in a civilized modern society due to the malicious intentions of a certain Existence X, she had stopped viewing things such as fate with an optimistic manner.

“Speaking of, what is that? What are these guys doing?”

Just as Tanya had ended her communication with the squadron commanders and was prepared to launch a secondary wave of assault towards the ground, her sight became fixated upon the movements made by the infantry units. Finally, it appears that some form of coordinated action was taking place. According to the Imperial Military Doctrine, the standard response to a situation like this would be to disperse your forces and retreat towards a more advantageous location to engage in anti-air cut-in (AACI) firing.

However, contrary to expectations, the enemy did not scatter but had chosen to group up into a densely packed formation.

“Was it due to panic that caused this to happen?”

Being isolated on the battlefield can truly be described as a fearsome thing to happen. The words of the adjutant weren’t without reasons and could be considered as a logical explanation to what was happening… … but judging from the situation, it seemed that the movement was more likely to have been made under the orders of the enemy commander.

“... It doesn’t seem to be due to panic, but more that they’re intending on making a square formation?”

“How is that possible… … This isn’t the cavalry era.”

Cries of astonishment could be heard coming from Second Lieutenant Serbiakof. This was not a cavalry assault but the concentrated air-to-ground attack made by magicians. The correct solution would be to scatter your forces. It truly was difficult to imagine that someone who puts faiths in the likes of a square formation would still exist in the current era. Even if one was not a qualified soldier, they should still be able to comprehend just how utterly catastrophic it would be to group up in a situation like this.

“No, even if they’re having the misconception that we’re still living in the stone age, there’s still got to be a limit even to this. Did we perhaps make a mistake somewhere?”

Doubts started to arise as Tanya couldn’t help but to wonder whether or not this whole thing was a trap and that other Great Powers had secretly provided the Dacians with a new type of strategy or technology. As these thoughts flashed by, Tanya’s mind began to race as she tried to once more assess the situation. In the end, the only conclusion she was able to draw upon was rather than wasting any more time, it would be much faster to just dive down and probe the enemy’s reaction.

Yet in the next moment, the scene that had unfolded before her eyes had inexplicably caused her to burst out in rage.

“Weiss!? You bastard, are you intending on committing desertion and flee before the enemy!?”

Tanya had almost doubted whether or not she was seeing things. The squadron under the command of First Lieutenant Weiss had quickly turned around and retreated before the enemy’s formation.

The densely packed formation made by the enemy infantry was an existence that was basically waiting to be blown away, where a single hit would be enough to cause it to crumble. The fruitless effort of someone incapable of correctly utilizing human resources was right there waiting to be struck down.

The anger that had stirred within Tanya’s heart was such that had caused even her body to subconsciously tremble as she yelled atop of her head.

“Just why are you pulling away!? Why did you abandon the assault!?”


Even the words of Second Lieutenant Serbiakof were not able to enter Tanya’s mind. Everything had been blocked out due to the emotional turmoil happening within her body. That was just how much anger it had caused Tanya to feel the moment she saw the scene unfold.

It was as if for no reason whatsoever, the previously formed assault-ready formation had suddenly dispersed and fled before the enemy opponents. From Tanya’s viewpoint, not a single action taken by the enemy had warranted the need to retreat.

Under such circumstances, the only reasonable explanation that her mind could come up with was ‘desertion’. Abandoning the assault right before the enemy opponents, along with the actions of retreating, to think that her own subordinates would display such cowardly and shameful behavior right before Tanya’s eyes, it was enough to fully cause her to feel shocked and speechless for a brief period of time.
<The English equivalent of 敵前逃亡 is “desertion” but the word also has the additional meaning of fleeing before the enemy>

Without even realizing she was grinding her teeth, Tanya snarled loudly at her adjutant.

“Adjutant, immediately go and apprehend the Vice-Commander! If he shows signs of resisting, execute him on the spot!”


Under the influence of excessive anger, Tanya immediately made the order to have Lieutenant Weiss apprehended. The feeling of being met with betrayal had caused her to feel extremely unhappy and dissatisfied. She had held high expectations for him and had previously anticipated that he would become a highly capable vice-commander, but who would have thought… to think that he was the kind of person that would flee before the enemy? Enough with the jokes. When faced against such pathetic mobs, the Vice-Commander of the 203rd Aerial Mage Wing would actually commit desertion, this will forever leave behind a stain that would never be washed away.

Instead of venting her anger on others, Tanya channeled it into the heavy explosion spell as she imbued it inside her bullet. At the same time while expressing her gratitude towards the Dacian Grand Duchy army that even at this moment was still maintaining their prehistoric battle formation, Tanya launched her attack. And as expected, the spell detonated amidst the enemy ranks.

Clearly, it was as simple as this. This battle was nowhere near to be considered at the level of a trial or anything. Tanya couldn’t help but to feel as if she was being played as a fool.

“Major, First Lieutenant Weiss has been brought over.”

Second Lieutenant Serbiakof hurriedly made her report in a manner as such that she wouldn’t disturb the sleeping dragon, wishing to get away as quickly as possible. Although Tanya was unaware of this, she had answered her adjutant’s prayers by indifferently assigning additional tasks to be performed.  
<TL: The term used was 触らぬ神に祟りなし, a JP proverb with the literal meaning being: an undisturbed God wreaks no vengeance.>

“Good work. Now go and lead my squadron, and continue the air-to-ground assault.”


Even the brief moment of dialogue exchange had caused additional irritation to build up within Tanya’s heart. After having casually handed over her squadron to Second Lieutenant Serbiakof, as though a predator approaching her prey, Tanya quietly approached with a face full of anger towards Lieutenant Weiss who had a look of confusion on his face wondering why he was suddenly called over by the Commander.     

“Well then, First Lieutenant! Before I have you executed, if there’s anything you still wish to explain to me, do it so quickly.”

“Ma, Major Degurechaff, about that...um, ...could you slightly clarify on what I need to explain?”

“Regarding my suspicions of you committing the crime of desertion before the enemy, First Lieutenant. If you require additional explanations, perhaps the military court would be a more suitable place for you to learn?”

Just why exactly was he called over, First Lieutenant Weiss was unable to comprehend. It was expected, after all, from his own perspective, he had done nothing wrong. Yet nevertheless, amidst the battle that was occurring on the very frontlines, the Wing Commander’s adjutant had suddenly appeared, as if treating him as an enemy, ordering him to “immediately make way to the Commander”. Such a situation was an extremely unnatural occurrence.

“Major! Me and my subordinates definitely did not abandon our duties....”

It was because of this, although he was unable to understand what the problem was, First Lieutenant Weiss was aware that he had somehow stepped onto a major landmine that was ready to explode. Exactly what had he done wrong? Regardless of what the situation was, from within his heart, First Lieutenant Weiss knew that he had always put in his utmost effort to fulfil his obligations, having never committed any wrongdoings that would be an embarrassment to God or to the Fatherland. As such, even when facing against the onslaught of the vampire-like countenance of his superior, he still had the courage to argue back.

“Very good, then explain to me exactly, why did you put on a distance between you and the enemy? Why had you turned around and retreated at that moment?”


“I want an explanation, regarding why your squadron had turned around and fled before the enemy!?”

And yet what he had received back from the Major, instead of considerations towards his counterplea, was the further increase in anger and killing intent that had completely disregarded the things that he had said.

“Yes, due to the enemy infantry having took up anti-air formation, I increased the distance between us and the opponents based on the recommended military response guidelines, and ordered my troops to engage in suppression fire.”

“Huh? Response guidelines?”

“The response was listed in the 22nd field operation manual for conducting aerial mage warfare.”

Concentrating wholeheartedly on the reply, from Weiss’s perspective, he was acting based on the training that he had received in the Eastern Army, where one was to carefully judge and respond to the situations occurring on the battlefield. However, from the countless experiences that Tanya had accumulated on the battlefield, she had long came to the conclusion that there was no point to follow guidelines down to the exact point, after all, it is impossible to predict every situation that could occur.

As such, after spending a little bit of time, Tanya was able to recall… Ah, in regards to the recommended approach when facing against enemy 「ground-to-air formation」, it indeed was to pull back and create a distance… …. While recalling on this, Tanya suddenly widened her eyes and exclaimed with a surprised expression.
“Wait a second, what you’re facing against is just a formation made by infantry!! Did you not understand my orders of immediately striking it down!?”

“Yes, due to the densely formed infantry formation, I acted according to the guidelines and pulled back.”

All because of, because of a bunch of infantry units deciding to gather together? Towards Tanya’s inquiry, First Lieutenant Weiss firmly responded with the affirmation that he had acted in according to the recommended guidelines, a down-to-earth dogmatic reply.

“First Lieutenant, let me make it clear to you, if a single mage were to fall to an attack like that, even before the enemy launch their attack, I will have him executed.”

“But… Major!”

“Listen to me carefully, common-sense man, I will only repeat this once. Do you honestly believe that bolt action rifles, even when concentrated, would have the capability to pierce through the protective membranes of mages?”

It wasn’t as though they were a heavy cavalry unit that was charging into the square formation of musketmens. The lethality of the weaponry carried by individual soldiers in today’s era was at a level which had long outstripped the defensive capabilities of infantry squares. The greatest examples that corroborate this would be the likes of the Rhine battlefront, and in the far eastern regions, the mudslinging contest that occurred between the Union and Akitsushima.

<TL: 秋津島akitsushima is the ancient name for the main island of Japan, Honshuu.>

Hence, Tanya found it difficult to accept the response of a subordinate that still religiously follows such rigid guidelines. The actions of concentrating infantry together was a suicidal form of behavior, as such, wouldn’t it be the best to just simply assist them with their suicide? But it appears that in the eyes of those that lacked combat experience, it was a concept that was difficult to comprehend, especially in the ranks of mages that were primarily made up of those having only experienced training exercises, resulting in those that would unconsciously adopt evasive behaviour when faced against a congregation of infantry.

“I will permit you an opportunity to wash away the stains of your dishonour. Go and launch your spells directly at the center of the enemy formation.”


“... Follow me. Allow me to demonstrate to you.”

As soon as her words had ended, Tanya immediately imbued her bullets with spells, and directly proceeded towards the central region of the enemy formation. Since his superior had set off, Weiss could only choose to follow after. All the while as he hurriedly chased behind the flying figure of a charging Tanya, he couldn’t help but to lament, thinking that they had committed the mistake of engaging in a reckless yet unrewarding assault.

“... … they got blown up.”

“Do you still have anything else that you would like to say? If not, go and complete the tasks that were given to you.”

The spells detonated exactly as practiced amidst the enemy ranks in the center of their formation. They further had enough energy left over to carefully observe the blown pieces of torsos and limbs as they flew back. Perhaps regardless of whether or not the opponents had the capability of blocking and suppressing their attack, the Imperial soldiers would still have hesitated due to fear of hidden tricks or surprises. And to First Lieutenant Weiss who had experienced in first hand the moment when the enemy infantry was blown away to pieces, this could be described as a complete new set of scenery that he had never witnessed before on the battlefield.   

“Major… I express my deepest apologies.”

“First Lieutenant Weiss, I judge that your fault was caused due to a lack of appropriate training. It seems that having the Wing undergo a live-ammo practice was indeed a correct decision to make.”

“Yes, I had been frightened.”

“Goodness gracious, even in such a simple exercise, things ended up going awry, it seems that the extremity of the Empire was surprisingly fragile. It really makes me want to sigh.”

Tanya couldn’t help but to sigh as she hovered in mid-air. Even the latest report that had been sent over via wireless communication had in a moment’s notice transformed into empty words as Tanya took in a deep breath and forcefully suppressed her emotions. The current status within the military was at a stage where even the brightest were unable to fully comprehend the paradigm shift in modern warfare, least of all to adapt them to the current teaching models and training methods used in military education. And the saddest part was that a considerable portion of the current doctrines in place were completely unable to be utilized in actual battle.

This had caused Tanya to deeply become aware of exactly how much those situated in the rear were lacking of in terms of frontline battle experiences and knowledge. Or would it be better to describe it as the lacking in understanding of the paradigm shift in modern warfare? Most likely, the majority of training officers and military instructors did not possess a proper grasp in terms of three-dimensional warfare.

Afterall, they have only been using outdated paradigms to unravel and study the experiences and mistakes committed by those present during the northern and Rhine battlefronts. The implications of such matters was truly frightening to think of. That was just how serious the situation within the Empire’s military education system was, or rather, it could be said that it was at a point where the only word that would fit to be used describe it was tragic.

Even under the excellent guidance of a teacher known as “experience”, which demanded outlandish teaching fees that were paid using blood and iron, it was unable to allow the majority of the officers and men within the Imperial Military to learn their lesson.

No wonder the Logistics Rostering committee members lead by Sir Zettois would specifically target the soldiers of the Eastern and Southern Army as means of further improving the overall combat experience and training, and select them as part of the specially formed unit under the direct control of the General Staff Office.    

In the airspace situated within the combat zone, becoming lost in thoughts to the point of losing awareness of the surroundings would normally be considered as the ultimate act in demonstrating one’s own stupidity. However, in the same way, this also showed just how much control they held over the progression of the battle, enough to the point that allowed Tanya the luxury of delving deep into her own thoughts. Although from a certain perspective, one should celebrate in joy over the absolute advantage they had over the battlefield, but within Tanya’s mind, the numerous thoughts that had emerged left her unable to to feel at ease.

“Major, the enemy command post has been discovered.”

“Too fast. Could it be a fake?”

A chain of unbelievable events continuously unfolded before them. To think that there would be a day where Tanya would feel this much skepticism towards the reports made by her own subordinates. It was a situation that was simply too outrageous to believe in. It was indeed true that their side possessed absolute air supremacy, and was at the same time, engaging in decapitation tactics… but even still, would the enemy command structure be this easily revealed?

“There are no mistakes. It has been confirmed, Major.”

“Is it their frontline headquarters or a lower level command system?”

For the command system to be revealed under the current chaos, at most it would be a division-level or a brigade-level command post.

“No, it appears to be the main headquarters of the invading forces.”

“What? Are you sure no mistakes were made?”

The situation of not being able to understand the meaning of the words that was said, it was precisely at a moment like this that Tanya had finally experienced it in full. Headquarters? The main headquarters of the invading forces?

“Our troops had intercepted unencrypted communications made between the enemy forces.”

Most likely that would only be some kind of false information intentionally spread by the enemy. Even if they were caught under panic and confusion, although it might be possible for one or two of the field communication officers to commit such a mistake, but for the main headquarters to not encrypt their outgoing communication, for such a thing to happen was simply too unbelievable to imagine.  

“In that case it’s most likely just fake transmissions intentionally broadcasted.”

“No, while I can understand where the Major is coming from… but all of the wireless communications picked up over this air zone were unencrypted.”

“...Is this true? I find it difficult to believe.”

“Not only that, no attempts were made to lower the signal strength of the incoming communications, and they were repeatedly broadcasted as well. Although it is hard to believe… it appears that they’re genuine.”

Despite the half skeptical expression that was also shown on the face of her subordinate, his words still carried forth the confidence of someone who knew what he was doing. If one had to express in words of what the current situation of the war was like, it would be that not only had the Dacian army limited their invading forces to just ground infantry units, they had further made no attempts to hide their internal communications, leaving them unencrypted and broadcasted live.

For Tanya who had just moments ago criticized her subordinate over his excessive reliance on common sense, had discovered that perhaps she herself might have also subconsciously became enslaved by the subject known as rationalism. Based on her personal views, the current situation had already proceeded beyond the realms that could be explained via rationalism.

Still half-doubting the words of her subordinate, Tanya tested the various channels through the use of her operation orb, and what was revealed was indeed massive amounts of unencrypted wireless transmissions that were continuously being broadcasted.  

“First Lieutenant Weiss, immediately order your troops to cover my squadron. Second Lieutenant Serbiakof! Bring over the squadron and follow me!”


Taking into consideration the possibility of it being a trap, they approached the target destination in a manner that would allow for the fastest method of disengagement to be deployed. At the same time as the squadron lead by Lieutenant Weiss formed into an assault support formation, ready to provide cover fire on a moment’s notice, Tanya’s own squadron adopted the appropriate aerial maneuvers as they begin to carry out armed reconnaissance. Keeping in mind for potential enemy surprise fire, the strength of the protective barriers have been raised to the maximum. Not just to the degree of the Type 97 limit, but in worst case scenarios, Tanya would not hesitate to unleash the full powers of the Type 95 Ellinium Operation Orb.

Most likely, we will be attacked.

Due to having readied her resolve for a potential surprise attack to take place, Tanya had predicted that the sound of shooting would soon appear from their below.


It was precisely because of this, she was unable to prevent cries of astonishment escaping. Regardless of...regardless of how incompetent the ones leading the army is, they should still know the importance in protecting their headquarters right? No matter how corrupt or inadequate the commanding officer was, even in fictions their bases would still be heavily fortified and difficult to break in.

And yet…

And yet, not a single attack came.

“This is too easy… … Everyone, are we actually engaging in a war? Are those guys really soldiers?”

Smooth sailing can always be said as a great a thing to encounter. This part is not wrong, but typically speaking, it is common on the battlefield for things to never go according to plan. Even such that according to Tanya’s original calculations, although she had expected they would be able to crush the opponent forces, never in her wildest beliefs that the outcome would far over-exceed what was originally intended.

She never would have imagined that they would be able to arrive outside the main headquarters of the Dacian army without meeting any opposition or resistance.

“Let’s hope we didn’t accidentally commit the mistake of attacking the largest tourist group that came to the Empire for sightseeing. If that was the case then this would be a catastrophic international issue that someone will need to take responsibility for.”

The situation after having successfully reached the heart of the enemy forces was such that even Tanya felt dumbfounded to the point of thoughtlessly murmuring words of joke.

“Yes. Our deepest apologies, Major.”

“To think that I would make the blunder of not asking for a confirmation from the Immigration Bureau beforehand, I will make sure to properly conduct an investigation afterwards.”

Even to the members of the Wing who had cleverly put on an expression of regret while bowing their heads in apology, vowing that they would never repeat the same mistake again, most likely, such a situation could only be described as bizarre yet troublesome encounter. Under such circumstances, it became all the more stringent having to complete all of the requirements previously set for the training exercise. It truly is troublesome being matched against opponents that were weak to the point of becoming mistaken by others as having sadistic tendencies towards the treatment of enemy soldiers.

Hence, the moment they descended into the field camp, upon seeing that it even had the regimental flags as a further indication just in case others were unable to spot it, Tanya couldn’t resist but to inquire in a teasing manner as the feeling of bewilderment continued to build up from within.    

“... Ah, excuse me, but is the person in charge present? In regards to all of the troubles that the Empire had caused, I express the deepest apologies. Although it’s embarrassing to say, the Imperial Border Guards had accidentally mistaken you guys for an army...”

Reenacting the joking manner of her subordinates, Tanya wore a look of extreme regret and sincerity as she bowed her head in apology towards the unsightly scene of the enemy as they scrambled to take cover or to flee. After a brief moment of chaos, the field camp soon became as quiet as a graveyard, to which at this point Tanya completely changed her attitude and cheerfully read out the following lines.

“Welcome to the Empire! Might I inquire for what purpose have you came for? Also, did you bring your visas? ”      

The Dacian side was utterly speechless, due to perhaps having witnessed a phenomenon that they were unable to comprehend. Although in disbelief, it only took a brief moment before their brains kicked back into function. Finally, they had understood what was happening. Shortly after falling into complete chaos due to the progression of the war, a heavily armed little girl came rushing into their headquarters and started poking at them as though playing the role of a custom officer.

“Sto...stop with the jokes, aghhhh!”

They just got played.... At least this much was for certain, and in the moment they had understood this, one of the officers who wore an excessive amount of ceremonial decorations, enough that caused even the snipers to not know which part of his body they should be aiming at, leaped towards Tanya, and was met with the fate of being introduced to the soles of First Lieutenant Weiss, and directly fainted on the spot. What made it even more troublesome was that based on the attirement, it seemed that he was the person with the highest level of authority. However, in some way, this could also be considered as a pleasant surprise.

“How about the rest of you? Do you wish to accept the opportunity of sightseeing the Empire as a captive?”

If the enemy were to surrender, Tanya could only act accordingly based on the international regulations set on the treatment of war prisoners. The task of defeating three divisions was relatively straightforward, but the task of feeding them was substantially more difficult to complete. The strain that would be placed on the logistics alone was something that Tanya would not wish to consider, just thinking of it would be enough to cause headaches. Nevertheless, Tanya was never a person who held an interest towards pointless slaughtering, as such, she still made the effort of providing an opportunity to surrender… purely based on a subjective point of view.

“You got be joking! The Dacian Army will never surrender!”

“Looks like we’ll be wasting more time. Aside from the Generals, shoot everyone else.”

Unfortunately, it appeared that they were unable to catch on, thus Tanya happily gave the order for her subordinates to start the massacre.

The end process will no longer be as complicated thus. Under Tanya’s command, the mage squadrons started to engage in close-quarter combat with the company-sized personnels from the Dacian headquarters. The aftermath of this engagement will most likely be recorded in the Dacian military textbooks with the conclusion being something along the lines of “the outcome of using light-armed weapons such as rifles to engage in close-quarter combat against mages is the equivalent of seeking death”.

After having easily disposed the remaining soldiers, the ground became littered with corpses. In a pirate-like manner, Tanya’s squadron quickly conducted a sweep of the enemy headquarters and ransacked every and any files, documents, or small devices they could find. Along with the small group of highly-precious captives, they will be gifted to the General Staff Office as souvenirs.

“Prepare the booby traps. Ah, that’s right, install it in that head over there.”

While at the same time, have the welcoming gifts prepared for the remaining enemy forces before they realize what had happened to their headquarters.

“To have the head of the officer they rescued to suddenly explode, it would provide quite the sight I would imagine.”

Although it’s a bit old-fashioned, the trap they had prepared was one of the classics that worked very well when combined with corpses. Not only would it be able to reduce the enemy’s overall fighting spirit, it would also serve as a mental shock to the ones that came for the rescue, altogether, it is a cost effective method that provides a considerable amount of returns.

“If only we were able to also prepare a pamphlet for them to view as well...”

“Adjutant, do you happen to have any ink? I feel like issuing border crossing stamps to these guys for some reason...”

“Oi, you there, stop playing around with the corpse. We’re still in the middle of a war.”

Seeing that her subordinates had began to relax and lower their guards due to having tasted the flavor of victory, Tanya was forced to reprimand them using harsh tones in order to get them back into attention. This was not a playground, but a battlefield. Although it was understandable, they still need to remain cautious.

If Tanya were to lose subordinates over a nonsensical situation like this, she would end up with a smear worse than that of Italy’s defeat by the Ethiopians.

In order to gain a better view of the overall battlefield, Tanya once more took to the skies. What was revealed after looking down brought full satisfaction to Tanya’s face. In regards to the Dacian infantry that have formed into square formations, currently they were bearing the full blunt of the multi-directional assault made by the 203rd Aerial Mage Wing. When taking into account of the lack of air support and aerial mages in the enemy’s side as well as the considerable gap in technological difference, the results didn’t even need to be mentioned.

The previously formed formations began to crumble as various explosions happened across the ranks of the Dacian troops. Numerous stragglers had already appeared after a single round of bombardment.  

If one were to attempt to reorganise these troops under such chaotic conditions, several hours still wouldn’t be long enough. Most importantly, the headquarters that they would be relying on for providing instructions had already been destroyed. Under such circumstances, even if the remaining commanders wish to restore order, the current level of confusion on the battlefield was to a point that it was almost nigh impossible.    

With a national power far inferior to that of the Empire, in order for Dacia to even have a slight hope of inflicting harm onto the Empire, it would need to be through conducting lightning fast warfare from the very beginning. Yet even if this was taken into consideration, the bizarre decision of sending only infantry to invade the Empire, perhaps only the battle of Imphal could be used as a comparison when describing similar acts of absurdity. If the remaining officers of the Dacian army were able to quell the troops and have them ready for sortie by tomorrow morning, Tanya feels they should definitely deserve a medal or two.

“Lieutenant Weiss, has the troops been assembled?”

“Yes, Major. Shall we begin the sweep for the remaining enemy forces?”

The moment she heard this, Tanya almost couldn’t prevent herself from scolding him outright for the idiotic suggestion that was given, and it took all of her self restraint and conviction before finally gaining control over her expression. This subordinate of hers only thinks of further expanding their military gains. However, when thinking back, after having just experienced their first live-action battle, regardless of how little or how hard-fought it was, for her subordinate to take the initiative to make suggestions such as expanding their overall military gains, he could be considered as quite an exemplary soldier.   

“Has the air fleet on our side made their move yet?”

As such, Tanya took on a separate approach by calmly raising a question, in a way so that she could better discover his merits. It could be said that this is the best approach for smoothing a situation. Although she previously might not have agreed to this view, things were no longer the same. This was the secret formula to successfully managing military personnels.   

“Yes. The 7th Air Fleet which has been equipped for bombardment will arrive shortly at the scene.”

“Since that’s the case, then let us leave the cleanup task to them. We will be advancing forward.”

“Roger! Might I inquire where our next target would be?”

A response that was both energetic and concise, so that’s how it is, this must be the proof that First Lieutenant Weiss displays as a demonstration to show that he was indeed a soldier of the Empire. It seems that he was quite unexpectedly, a hard worker. In that case, since he can be of use, then one should definitely not let such opportunities go to waste.

“The capital.”

“The capital?”

“That’s right, the capital.”

It was as though even Tanya herself had unexpected became more amicable as a result of this.  

“Let the wounded and a few others act as guards to take back the captives. I leave the personnel selection to you.”

“Understood. However, none of our troops were wounded, as such… how should I best approach this?

“Ah, is that the case huh?”

Having being reminded, Tanya finally realized just how difficult it would be to receive an injury during a battle like the one they had previously encountered. It seems that even though she had made the assumption previously that none of her troops would suffer any injury, her habit of sending away the wounded still got the best of her. Having took note of this, Tanya mentally made the commitment of the need to further reflect upon this in the future.  

Ever since having become accustomed to the weight of a rifle hanging over her shoulder, for small hitches like this to occur during her first time enactment as a commander, could it perhaps have been caused due to tension?

If that was the case then it would be better to relax and lighten the mood. The duties of a superior wasn’t only limited to making the work atmosphere more stagnant.

“Good. Then select the ones who have accumulated the most fatigue. This will be a long distance march. That’s right… also select those who have just experienced their first live combat as well.”

“Understood. I will have the fourth Squadron break off one of their Flights, is this fine?”

“Hmu, it’s appropriate. I will leave it to you.”

In terms of troop management, First Lieutenant Weiss possessed a surprisingly solid judgement and decision making skills. Tanya had took notice of this long since the formation of her Wing. Regardless of what an individual’s own set of strength may lie in, being unable to manage one’s own subordinates during normal times was an indication that the said person was unfit for the role of a commanding officer. As for whether or not First Lieutenant Weiss was able to fulfil his role as the commanding officer of his squadron during times of battle, this will need to be determined by his future performance. Nevertheless, Tanya hoped that her expectations would not be betrayed.

Since he was selected from among the subordinates who had demonstrated a certain level of thirst for battle, his combat skills and conviction for battle should be quite decent. Furthermore, for someone who possessed enough common sense as having previously demonstrated, Tanya felt enough reassurance to let him remain as her Vice-Commander and continue his contributions towards her own safety and wellbeing. For now, it’s best to just observe for a longer period of time before coming to a conclusion.

“Well then, First Lieutenant, we shall now proceed onwards.”


“Let us advance, and continue to move forward, until we reach the limit. It is always good to test things to the extreme.”

But before then, first it is time to enjoy the rewards.

The moment she thought of this, Tanya couldn’t help but let out a smile. It was a usual smile that, if seen by Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen, it would cause him to freeze, such a smile was let out as she congratulated the Wing to continue forward. Let us advance and continue to advance.

This was also the collective intent of the 203rd Aerial Mage Wing. Even for a level-headed person like First Lieutenant Weiss, he had unconsciously revealed a smile as he saluted.

Let us advance.

Every member of the Wing received this command without casting any doubt.

They held within themselves the conviction that they were capable of continuing forward.

The Dacian war front, under the combined might of the 17th reserved forces the Eastern Army and the 7th Air Fleet, resulted in the total collapse of the enemy frontline. More than two thousand slain, and numerous enemy soldiers captured. Followed after, in the battle which took place between the main enemy forces of 600 000 against the 70 000 troops of the Empire, the word ravaged could only used to describe the outcome. The 203rd Aerial Mage Wing which acted as the vanguard during this conflict, in a literal sense achieved complete air supremacy over the entire battle front. And prior to the arrival of additional aviation reinforcements, the Wing committed to the decision of launching a strike against the enemy capital. The words recorded at that time said by Wing Commander Degurechaff was one which contained absolute confidence: it would have been strange if they weren’t able to trample the enemy forces.

C.E 1924 September 25, 03:17 am,  In the skies above the Dacia Grand Duchy Capital

That day, the capital of the Dacia Grand Duchy was operating as usual, and under the approach of the setting sun, welcomed the incoming night without any contrast.

Due to an impending sense of urgency brought on by the beginning of a war, the various members of the populace became more the rowdier as drinks after drinks were being consumed, along with the sounds of heated discussions and debates, this period of liveliness lasted until the dead of the night, where the majority have met with sleep’s embrace.

It could be described as a peaceful night like any other. The number of clouds in the sky was limited and the overall visibility level was high. Only a faint south-eastern wind was currently blowing, but not at a level where the residue smoke of gunfire would accumulate and obstruct visibility.

Apart from the foreign substance known as the 203rd Aerial Mage Wing that had penetrated deep within the night, no other irregularity existed.

“This will be the earliest recorded night raid on an enemy nation’s capital, however it isn’t particularly difficult a task to accomplish.”

The one that had quietly muttered this while leading the Aerial Mage Wing, was the commanding officer Major Tanya Degurechaff.

With a kind and gentle expression as she viewed the landscapes of the capital, it was as if she took in the entirety of the scenery into a single photo at that moment in the same way as what her sobriquet “Mithril” had represented. Gliding peacefully amidst a quiet and gentle night, a feeling of pleasantness and delight was reflected in her mood. However, the thoughts that were currently occurring within Tanya’s mind was anything but the appreciation regarding the beauty of the night sky and instead, it churned towards a much deadlier concept of how to, in the most pleasant and delightful manner, start an arson.

Entering a capital that didn’t even impose blackout curfews as a measure to spot invading enemy air units was a task that was as simple as flying in low altitude for parades. Although they had somewhat expected this to happen, it still stirred within them a feeling of disbelief. Not to mention a lack of aviation or mage units, but there wasn’t even a single ground-to-air formation to greet them. Not having discovered any presence of anti-aircraft guns, Tanya felt all the more joyous as they proceeded into the enemy capital.

<TL: 灯火管制doukakansei - the control of a city’s lights, the English equivalent being https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackout_(wartime)>

Of-course, there was always the possibility that the capital was filled with the likes of anti-air formations and anti-aircraft weaponry that were camouflaged away as to prevent from being discovered… … However, if that was the case, then Tanya’s Wing wouldn’t have been allowed the opportunity to enter the skies above the capital. And frankly speaking, it was difficult to imagine that a country like Dacia who had shown such disregard towards aerial warfare would actually have the clues to setup anti-air formations in advance.

The supporting evidence to Tanya’s speculations was the lights of the capital. The entire city was brimming with various sorts of lights, electric or gas, bright enough to the point that along the way, causing Tanya to seriously hold second doubts as to whether or not this whole thing was a farce. Such leisurely feelings projected by the city could be considered as normal in everyday life, but seeing it on the battlefield was abnormal. As soon as Tanya thought about teaching them the concept of blackouts, she couldn’t help but to feel as though she was suddenly one of the Enlighteners bringing about the Age of Reason.

<TL: 啓蒙家 Lumières https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_Enlightenment>

Then let experience serve as the ultimate lesson to educate the foolish. Tanya had always previously wondered why there would be people in this world willing to waste time teaching the foolish, but now she was finally beginning to understand. Behind the smiling face lied the feeling of pity and contempt as they mercilessly provided enlightenment to others, such acts of ordeal truly was tiring to go through.

“Education huh? I see, to teach in place of the teacher known as experience, it could be considered as quite a rewarding job that receives high tuition fees at the same time.”

It should be described as a job suitable for certain foreigners to perform.

A simple and straightforward work which involves demonstrating to the pitiful Grand Duchy through the use of physics, exactly how behind their nation was in terms of both modern warfare and civilization as a whole. The tuition and all other expenditure fees will be covered by the Imperial Military. Even the individual bullets that were fired, each and every one of them will be cordially sponsored by the General Staff Office as part of their charity towards providing enlightenment.

It seems that it was only after having adopted the mentality of an educator, that Tanya able to finally gain a better understanding towards this subject. From the perspective of the uncivilized, the lights of civilization was a blessing gifted from the heavens. Since that was the case, no wonder some had the delusions of believing that the superiority and inferiority of an ethnic race could be determined based on the level of civilization and culture. The realization of such frightful yet misguided ideology was simply too alluring in destructive nature for Tanya to imagine.

Not good. Tanya momentarily paused in an attempt to recollect herself while at the same time reflect upon her previous mentality state. No matter what, she must never allow for any acts to be warranted under the name of God. In a way this was related to her own self preservation, but if it involved the act of delivering justice onto a certain Existence X, Tanya would not mind even if it had to be performed under God’s Will.

Regardless, now was not the time for pondering. Having quickly casted away her train of thoughts, with a flashlight at hand, Tanya used it to signal for her officers who were patrolling the surroundings to gather. It was almost time for them to act.

After all, a structure that was brimmed with lights to the point of dispersing the surrounding darkness was already in view. It was an ammunition factory that was still in operation mode within the dead of the night, currently noisily churning out rounds of ammunition in a frenzy like manner. The strike target was in plain views in front of their eyes.

“Major, did you call for us?”

“As planned, we have discovered our target. Adjutant, can you spot it? It’s that thing over there.”

“... for a military factory to be without any guards, that’s quite difficult to believe.”

“Honestly speaking, I feel the same. But I guess it could be said as a form of arrogance...”

Tanya couldn’t help but to rub her nose all the while as she mentioned this, or rather, it could be described as rubbing her nose as she sneered towards the stupidity displayed by the enemy.

“These guys still seem to be living under the same preconcepts as to what was used in the previous century. From the looks of things, they’ve completely submerged themselves within the world of two-dimensional warfare.”

Not the three-dimensional world which included the skies, but just the two-dimensional ground itself. Such a wonderful and amazing concept. There should be a point even for stupidity. It was all thanks to this that everything so far had been this easy to accomplish. The incompetence of the enemy truly was the most amazing thing to wish for. As long as they could serve as target practice, no matter how many additional chromosomes they possessed in their body, Tanya wouldn’t mind.

Instead, she should rejoice. Celebrate having been blessed with the luck of encountering such a joyous situation.

“No, perhaps it would be better to admire their 24-hour work ethics.”

“To think that they were such hard working people, the Lumières surely would be pleased to hear this.”

Although First Lieutenant Weiss’s face was somewhat stiff when expressing his approval towards Tanya’s remark, he was still capable of understanding, that as the Vice-Commander of the Wing, exactly what needs to be done in order to wash away his previous stigma.

Since that was the case, and Lieutenant Weiss had shown his intention of regaining his honor, Tanya concluded that she could feel assured to leave these work for him to handle, at least for now.

“No matter what, for the task to turn out to be this easy to accomplish was definitely a great thing to happen, Major.”

Not having betrayed her expectations, Weiss took the initiative to express his views. Despite a lack of experience, he possessed the capability to make judgements while at the same time follow the decisions of his superior. He was unexpectedly a valuable asset that was difficult to acquire. Tanya felt relief in knowing that her decision in selecting First Lieutenant Weiss as the Vice-Commander was definitely a well made one and all the more praised her own ability at discerning talent from amongst the garbage.

“This is a great opportunity. When do we make our move?”

At the same time, towards the impatience shown by Second Lieutenant Serbiakof due to having encountered an opportunity that was impossible to find on the likes of the Rhine battlefront, Tanya couldn’t help but to feel unease. Although she may have taught her adjutant the ways of conducting a battle, Tanya had never imparted on her the knowledge on the ways of coping to the various different rules that would appear on a battlefield. Since she had only received a short-duration accelerated program in regards to officer training, even if she had no problems in terms area of troop management, she most likely still need to complete additional learning in the area to do with legality and civil rights.

“Second Lieutenant Serbiakof, I hope you’re aware that we are not a group of barbarians that hold zero regards to military justice.”

That’s right, among the body of laws that govern members of the armed forces, there were specific clauses set by the judiciary regarding the proper ways of conducting urban warfare.

Laws which forbid the attacking of civilians or targeting the everyday facilities used by civilians. Laws which dictate the act of engaging in non-discriminatory attack or bombing to be considered as inhuman behaviour etc. They were basically an array of valid and logical arguments that could not be easily refuted.

To bring logic and reasoning into the insane world of warfare was truly an act of wonder that was worthy of respect. To conduct warfare through reasoning rather than madness, it accurately depicted the depth of mankind’s progression. Such a remarkable achievement, it fully deserves to receive three shouts of banzai as praise. The only downside was that it contained way too many laws which were impractical for implementation, regardless of how praiseworthy they may have been.

However, in terms of actual practicality, it was possible to get around a lot of them through carefully restricting the targeted area as well as providing reasonable counterarguments based on your own individual interpretations in regards to the semantics of the law. At least this time around, there weren’t any problems in particular to do with the issue of legality.

“Yes, please excuse my impudence.”

“Pass this message on to everyone, we will only target the enemy factory. Oi, an evacuation warning will also need to be issued. It must be according to regulations, broadcasted via the international rescue channel.”

The factory they were looking at was clearly a military related facility. It was not used for baking bread nor for supplying electricity to the populace. It was through and through, a military factory producing war related goods. Regardless of who it was, no matter how they might argue, it was near impossible to twist the facts into that the ammunition produced were to be used for peaceful purposes. Although if it was case of someone like the noble humanitarian Mr Molotov, perhaps they might be able to spin it into saying the factory was for making bread baskets, but even then it wouldn’t be a problem. The fault would lie with the person that had decided on using such a misleading facility to make bread baskets.  

<TL: Mr Molotov, a famed diplomat of the USSR https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vyacheslav_Molotov>

“Major! If we do that then we would lose our element of surprise!”

“First Lieutenant Weiss, although I can understand your concern, you’re acting too much out of common sense.”

Unexpectedly, it appeared that Tanya’s full intent of choosing to follow international law was not properly conveyed to her subordinates.

“But, we made the all the way here, to think that we have to expose our whereabouts after all of this...”    

An expression of ‘why do we have to do this’ surfaced on the faces of Tanya’s subordinates.

It was an expression which would commonly be seen on the face of soldiers that would without any hesitancy make use of any means to achieve their goals. However, the one that had selected them into her Wing was none other than Major Tanya von Degurechaff herself. Even if she wanted someone to blame, it would only be herself.

At this moment, Tanya couldn’t help but to cast doubts as to whether or not she had committed a mistake in her troop selection, but regardless of what, even if they disagreed with the command issued by their superior, as exemplary soldiers of the Imperial military, they would still strictly obey Tanya’s orders.

“Second Lieutenant Serbiakof, go issue the warning. Act according to the rules and suggest for evacuation.”

“Is it really fine for me to do this?”

The weak and unexpected response made by Second Lieutenant Serbiakof had inadvertently resulted in a brief spark of inspiration followed after by the feeling of reluctance as they surfaced within the expert known as Major Degurechaff.

That’s right, sending out a warning was only a formality. It would be even better if no one were to take it seriously. If that was the case, Tanya feels that rather than having someone like First Lieutenant Weiss to act as the representative for issuing the warning, it would be much better to have Second Lieutenant Serbiakof who possesses a much more unreliable voice to have it done.

Naturally, Tanya had secretly excluded herself who was the youngest one among them from being included in the list of candidates.

However, under the pressure of the additional inquiries of her subordinates, she couldn’t help but to finally admit this reasoning. And when asked why she had decided on Second Lieutenant Serbiakof, Tanya had originally wanted to give the answer of “letting women and children to issue the warning would result in a greater amount of carelessness from the enemy”, but at the same time, she did not wish to become entrapped when then asked “if that was the case, wouldn’t it be the best for the Major to do this?”   

Looks like there’s no choice. Regardless of how reluctant she was.

“... ...No, I understand. It would be better for me to do it. I will try my best to make my voice sound like that of a child.”

Oh well, since there’s no other choice, then might as well try my best to make it into a success. God damn shitty international law, hurry up and go rust into pieces of forgotten clauses already. Just who was it that had acted all high and mighty and expressed the desire to follow international law?

Feeling half desperate and half relinquished, Tanya headed towards her subordinate and picked up the microphone, and wanted to finish this as quickly as possible.


That day, the following warning was widely broadcasted across the Dacian capital… or rather how little it was.

Regardless, Tanya had faithfully acted in accordance to each and every clauses listed in the international law, and actively broadcasted the warning on the military frequency.

“We, the Imperial army, will shortly after, launch a direct attack on the following military facility!”

However, it could be said that this warning message was only able to enter the ears of a very small amount of people. After all, in the country of Dacia, the radio was yet to become a widespread popular device that would be seen in the household of typical civilian families, and even if a household possessed such a device, it would not be turned on during the dead of the night.

“After 30 more minutes, we will begin our attack”

Furthermore, at a moment like this, towards the soft and high pitched broadcast which was clearly done by someone who was just a child, for any sensible person out there that would treat such an out-of-the-blue message as a serious warning… perhaps such a said person truly does not exist at that moment. However, if it was broadcasted by someone who possessed a strong and concise military tone like that of Sir Rudelsdorf or Sir Zettois, the outcome would have been vastly different. Yet in Tanya’s situation, when objectively speaking… regardless of the content spoken, it would give off the impression of being a joke.     
At best it would be treated as that of a prank, the majority would definitely not take much of a notice and carelessly return back to their beds.

“We pledge that, we, will follow according to international law, and conduct the attack using proper methods.”

On the other hand, towards her own actions of playing the role of a child, Tanya felt the need to disperse all her emotions. In a sense, the amount of suffering she had to endure was comparable to that of the full activation of the Type 95 operation orb. It was at the same level of torture to that of singing praises of the Lord or basking in the benevolence of Existence X. Nevertheless, she still held on.

It was precisely because of this that caused Tanya to continuously stare at the target before her with an expression as though she wouldn’t wait for even a second to have it blown. While at the same time for Visha who was currently watching from a side, the expression that was shown on her face perhaps could be described as the collective feeling of the whole Wing.

… ...about this, um, isn’t this simply way too despicable a method to employ, Major?

With a voice and tone befitting to that of Tanya’s age, she issued the warning. No matter who it was that had heard it, they would think it was the type of harmless mischief done by that of a small child. It could also be said that in the eyes of her subordinates, it was as if they had witnessed the birth of something detestable.     

“Major, did you ever take part in theatrical performances?”

“Theatrical performance? I don’t understand what you’re talking about. As long as I can lower their guard I am satisfied.”

Using a voice appropriate to that of her age yet at the same time containing the typical emotionless tone, Tanya angrily muttered out a complaint. This could be considered as a way of letting out the mixed emotions previously entrapped within her body. Her mood which was currently in full display, even someone like First Lieutenant Weiss who had had only known Tanya for a short duration was able to spot it. If one had to give a comparison, the signal that Tanya was emitting contained the same amount of danger as nitroglycerin.

The moment that Visha inconspicuously distanced herself away from that of her superior, the rest of the troops quietly followed after. If possible, they truly did not wish to remain close by to that of a foul mooded Major Degurechaff.

“... Well then, everyone. For me to embarrass myself up to a point like this, it was all worth it.”

However, regardless of what, they were still soldiers of the Empire.

Therefore, even though they were able to understand the desire of their superior in wishing to treat the enemy as stress relief targets and feel sympathy for them, they still faithfully carried out their tasks and prepared their operation orbs and rifles.

“This is a military factory that received foreign support from the Republican forces, most likely it’s filled with materials that could ignite and light up.”

The words that were murmured, was packed the full conviction of her desire to have it blown up. Her thoughts and her feelings which were typically suppressed and hidden, it was only at a moment like this that it had been revealed in full before the 203rd Aerial Mage Wing.

The so called killing intent.

“The warning has been issued. The assigned task completed. Well then, it is time to enjoy the fireworks.”

Her words revealed the full indignation that she had suffered, or could it be said as containing her desire of wanting to vent her anger.

At that moment, a large-scale spell formation was being deployed by Major Degurechaff, one that was formed with numerous intricate patterns which began to glow as the transformation process took place, readying for the long-distance bombardment spell to be released. Her expression while channeling was that of a look of intoxication and hatred, it was a genuine appearance of a ferocious beast. An undisturbed God would not wreak vengeance. It was anger in its purest form that no one was willing to disturb, even if it was to be directed at the enemy it would not disperse.    

“In the name of God let judgement before the enemy.”

Tanya softly murmured this phrase, letting her troops understand the seriousness of her intentions.

“Let the work of God make its appearance on earth.“

What she was unleashing was the greatest level of disaster.

“Unleash the spell! Conduct hidden surveillance at the same time.”

“Unleash the spell. Target, the Calberius Ammunition Factory!”

“Each squadron, coordinate with the major for an combined assault!”

Not willing to lag behind, what followed after was a string of curses as the commanding officers of each squadron yelled for their squadron to ready their long distance bombardment spell formations.

Generally speaking, the deployment of such large scale spell formations on the battlefield would usually result in receiving the concentrated retaliation of enemy artillery or becoming the strike targets of enemy aerial mages.

However, if the reaction from the opponents was slower than the casting speed, the situation would be completely different.

“Unleash the spell!”

Accompanied by the command to fire, was the concentrated might of numerous long distance bombardment spells unleashed from that of an overstrength Wing. The true beauty of such intricate spell which required an extraordinary amount of mana consumption and preparation was finally put to full display.

No one had made an attempt to stop this nor had anyone took notice.

To the slight disappointment of the aerial mages that had casted the spell, it easily reached its intended target without any interference, and followed after can literally be described as the annihilation of the ammunition factory.

“Sixteen shots landed! The rest came close by.”

“For a long distance attack, this could be said as an acceptable outcome.”

Just as First Lieutenant Weiss intended on making his report…

A brilliant flash of explosion suddenly appeared.

The intensity of the detonation, even to the Imperial mages that were anticipating for such an event to occur, could be described as having exceeded their expectations. The entire night sky was in that moment, completely caught within the brilliance displayed by the explosion.

The debris brought on from the initial onset, one after another fell from the bright lit sky. At the same time, the Dacian capital was violently roused from its slumber. The total amount of light unleashed was enough others to view clearly from a distance.

“A secondary explosion.”

Feeling complete satisfaction, Tanya uttered a single phrased which represented everything.   

“たまやー” <tamayaa~>


“It was just an expression of joy. Don’t worry about it.”

With her back turned, a bitter expression appeared on the face of Major Degurechaff as she tried to quickly let her previous comment slide by without gaining any further attention, and changed the topic. Ahh, it was all because of having witnessed such an exciting performance.

“Looks like in the future, we can no longer look down upon Dacia. Not only had they provided such an extensive live-ammunition training for us, they further prepared a wonderful display of fireworks.”

A sound of laughter was heard from Tanya as she displayed an expression of joy. The fireworks birthed from the result of their hard labour, this particular thought was born from the emotions felt after witnessing such a large scale sun-like explosion.     

“Nevertheless, our objective has been accomplished. Now then, let’s return back to base.”

C.E 1924 October 23,  Imperial Military General Staff Office (Army) First Dining Hall

“...So this was the military ration that you had previously wanted me to sample huh?”

This was a sentence that was uttered by a certain personnel working in logistics. The First Dining Hall of the General Staff Office was a restaurant that served the typical frontline rations as means so that those working in the rear would not so easily forget the previous experiences they had accumulated on the battlefield.

Major General Rudelsdorf was unable to refute this. Despite of this, when discussing the unique cuisine that was served by the General Staff Office’s Dining Hall, Rudelsdorf couldn’t help but to agree to the thought that at least it was still able to put up a decent competition against the cuisines served in the United Kingdoms. From the bottom of his heart, he expressed his agreement to the opinions of his subordinates.

At least according to what Zettois has observed so far, the idea that an officer would enjoy having his meal at the First Dining Hall was essentially nonexistent. As such, although they were discouraged from making discussions on military related topics especially of those that contain classified information in the dining hall, when the time arises for needing to discuss such matters, the dining hall actually turned out to be the ideal location to do so. Could it get anymore ironic than this?

Nevertheless, both Major General Zettois and Major General Rudelsdorf possessed a personality that if a thing could be of use, then there’s no point in not using it. Hence, from the moment they realized that the dining hall was actually the most secretive location to discuss military secrets, regardless of how unwilling they were, at least one of their meals each day will always be consumed inside the dining hall.

“... time isn’t necessarily always going to be an ally to us (the Empire), but at the same time, it won’t necessarily be an enemy.”

Major General Rudelsdorf impatiently swallowed down into his throat what appeared to be some grotesque form of bread with the help of a sip of substituted coffee. On this dining table that was filled with the likes of fake or substitute products, he picked up using his hand and felt towards the only genuine object amongst the fakes which was that of a Mason porcelain cup. Using a tone which reflected the depth of his frustration, he spoke the following words.

“Considering the current situation, it is true that the Empire does not wish to maintain two simultaneous warfronts for long durations of time. Yet Rudelsdorf, you claim that time could be our ally?”

Zettois revealed a slightly dissatisfied expression, and deflected back the amusing comment made by Major General Rudelsdorf with a question. Although his area of expertise was mainly in logistics, in terms of formulating and discussing strategies to do with conducting warfare, his level of qualification and experience was not at all in any way inferior to Major General Rudelsdorf who have spent long years in the area of studying and theorizing warfare.

Purely based on the skills and qualifications, from the perspective of the General Staff Office, the best ways to utilize their expertise was to have the spirited and energetic Rudelsdorf to take command in directing the overall combat operations while anticipating the clever and scholar-like Zettois to carefully manage and direct the overall flow of behind the scene operations to ensure the smooth functioning of the entire military organization.

And in the Dacian War, the performance of the two completely satisfied all expectations. Rudelsdorf who was able to bring out to full display the power of maneuver warfare, actively demonstrated his skills through coordinating the battle. While Zettois, who was able to deploy troops and arrange for the necessary supplies to arrive prior to the start of the battle, fully demonstrated his frightening ability at the management of logistics. These performances had perfectly returned the anticipations shown by the General Staff Office.

“Of-course, such actions will result in unnecessary waste of resources. As such, it will have to be the same as what we had done in Dacia, striking first at the weak points of the enemy. This part hasn’t changed.”
“In other words, you wish to maintain the current battlefront for a while more longer, so that the logistic side will have enough time to have everything ready? I will have to say this to you straight, Rudelsdorf, the expansion work for the harbours and railroads in the Norden region has already reached to the limit. Although it may not be impossible, to further increase the load of supply transfer for the winter offense will cause too heavily a burden.”

“Since that’s what you say, then most likely it really can’t be achieved. However, it’s not as though we’ve only known each other for a short period of time, regarding my intentions, although you said it couldn’t be done, you haven’t yet mentioned any other alternatives.”

Meshing both front and rear line together into an intricate pattern of military web that would be used to entrap the enemy, from a certain sense, due to the extraordinary abilities that the two possessed and the absolute faith they had in each other’s capabilities, a unique cooperative relationship had long since been established between them.

“I wish to issue an apology to Major General Rudelsdorf. Based on what I had seen and heard regarding the status of the roads and railways, it is impossible to improve the current situation in the north in such short periods.”

“Major General Zettois? Do I need to inform you on the possibility of establishing a sea route for logistics?”

Zettois slightly retracted his facial expression, and spoke out his personal thoughts.

“Understood, understood. It is as you said, from our Bureau of Operations’ standpoint, we do have the authority to levy all of the commercial and private trade vessels in the harbour under the pretext of war.”

This was the only solution that Zettois was able to think of after having performed numerous calculations, and it relied on whether or not they could obtain enough ships to do so.

“If necessary, it is possible to have close to 300 000 tonnes of supplies to be shipped via sea at any moment, and have them head towards whichever port that you intent on to use in the north.”

“You’ve already prepared for it huh? If that’s the case, you should have said so at the start.”

“Let me make it clear, this can only be done if we can ensure the safety of our sea routes. While I can accept taking a few losses due to enemy interference, but in a situation where we need to risk both our fleet and our troops just to have a supply line carved out and established behind the enemy line for us to launch a two-front assault, such a gamble I am simply not willing to accept.”

A hint of unease was spread across Major General Zettois’s face, what he was worried about was not the success rate of the proposed operation, but rather to say, it was regarding the significant amount of damage it will bring to the Empire if they were to fail.

The current state of the Imperial military, although it could be said that due to having a weak naval presence even prior to the start of the war, the majority of the commercial and military vessels were retained at their individual ports on lockdown which could be utilized for this operation. But having said that, this further showed just how weak the Empire’s naval forces were, and the most problematic part was whether or not they were capable of protecting the supply line.

If it was only leading up to the narrow straits close by to that of the Empire’s borders then it would be a different matter, but to go further beyond and at the expense of having to protect the supply line, under such unfavorable conditions, Zettois couldn’t help but to take the opposing side.

“You’re too caught up on the idea of failure. Regardless of how risky it would be to make such a play, as long as we manage to breach the enemy rear-line and cut-off their supply line, it will result in the total collapse of the Federation.”

Towards Zettois’s unease, Rudelsdorf responded in an apathetic manner, completely disregarding any of the risks that might be involved.

While it could be said that the two sides were currently in a stalemate situation, but when considering the differences in terms of national power and overall military strength, the Federation was currently facing the same fate as what had happened to Dacia. Hence, even though there were many flaws and risks associated with the plans of Major General Rudelsdorf, similar to how it had played out in Dacia, as long as the Imperial army is capable of breaching the rear regions of the opponent, it will result in the collapse of the Federation army.

“I won’t deny this. Honestly speaking, I don’t consider the Federation to be a threat. I think it is fine to leave them as they are for now. Rather than the Federation, we should be focusing our attention on the Republic.”

“I believe it is be better to eliminate as many battlefronts as possible.”

Soon after, through the exchange of dialogue between the two Major Generals, revealed the subtle differences of opinions between logistics side and the combat planning side. In the eyes of Major General Zettois, even if they were to forcefully breach the north, it will not make the handling of logistics any easier, whereas in the eyes of Major General Rudelsdorf, eliminating a warfront would potentially reduce a considerable amount of burden.

“From the logistics point of view, even if we were able to successfully occupy the Federation, supplies will still need to be sent to the troops stationed over there. The burden will not be reduced. Even if ammunition isn’t being consumed, we still need to feed the stomachs of our soldiers.”

“This I understand. But relatively speaking, it is a lot easier for us to crush the Federation than obtaining victory over the Republic.”


In the end, both sides were able to maintain composure and not lose sight on the overall objective, which was to determine the most optimal steps that needs to be taken in order to put the Empire in a better position no matter how slight the increase would be. As long as it doesn’t result in too heavy of a burden on the logistics side while still able to narrow the number of battlefronts that needs to be maintained and fought, such a proposal definitely meets the requirement for further consideration.

Therefore, regarding the proposal of suppressing the enemy rear, Major General Zettois did not find any faults in terms of the overall battle strategy and agreed to the formulation of such plan.

“If you’re intending on launching an attack, I suggest for you to consider for a moment, Oslofjord.”     

“Oslofjord? The defense there is too sturdy. Not only is the gulf passage surprisingly narrow, there’s a lot of fortresses on the coast.”

“Oslo city is the primary connection point for the railway. As long as you can occupy it, it will heavily disrupt the enemy’s logistic line, while at the same time, our side will be able to use it for ourselves.”

The city that Major General Zettois had pointed to, occupying it would literally be considered as slicing clean the opponent’s supply line. Although it might be difficult to accomplish, it was the most realistic approach to delivering a blow to the enemy’s logistic operations. Once the idea took form inside of Major General Rudelsdorf’s mind, he was unable to suppress the grin on his face.

“Understood. ...this idea of yours is quite the cruel one. But definitely reasonable… … in that case, let’s settle it for here.”

In the situation where the hands and feet end up becoming severed from the head, the detached soldiers of the Federation will only be fated to be remembered in history as those that had heroically fought and resisted until death. An army without a head is the equivalent of a mass of mobs that had forgotten they were soldiers. If as according to how the Northern Headquarters had estimated, the Northern Army was capable of suppressing the enemy if no additional reinforcements were to arrive… … In a case where the enemy supply and transportation line were cut-off, the only thing left to consider was simply how to achieve the most military accomplishments.      

“If you’re able to make this happen, I will supply the troops. If not, I shall then focus my attention on preparing for a full-frontal assault.”

“No, that’s fine. I will give it my all.”

Rudelsdorf maintained his grin as he accepted this task with resolution, and responded in confidence with an “I’ll take it down for you to see” expression. It has always been the long cherished wish of the General Staff Office to witness the appearance of a sudden reversal in a large-scale mobile theatre. Rudelsdorf nodded his head towards Zettois in a manner as though even if he was given a cement-like coffee to drink, he would still drink it with a smile.

“Good. If there’s anything you require, let me know.”

“Ah, then hand me your mage troops.”

Towards things that he wanted, Rudelsdorf bluntly requests for them.

“Mage troops? Aah, that’s not a problem. Which troops did you want?”

“I want your treasure. Is it the 203rd unit? I want to make use of the unit that was active in Dacia.”

“It’s a slightly problematic Wing, are you fine with that?”

The treasure belonging to Major General Zettois. A unit that put to true display the meaning of maneuver warfare and was able to in a single go ferociously attack their way to the enemy military factory. Not only that, they’re an overstrength mage Wing that was fully equipped with the latest technology produced from the Elinium Laboratory. Furthermore, they were a unit that had forced Lieutenant Colonel Lehrgen when reporting on the evaluation of their training, with a perplexed expression, firmly stating that they were a unit that couldn’t be matched by any other in the Empire.

“Not a problem. If I recall correctly, the Wing Commander also possesses previous combat experiences in Norden. To have someone that is knowledgeable regarding the situation over there is also a good thing.”  

He had heard that she was quite difficult a person to handle. However, if it was regarding whether or not she was of use, she was definitely a mage that could be used. If so, then it was all the more natural to keep using her as a chest piece.

“Good. I will immediately start the preparations.”

“My thanks. Well then, let us make a simple prayer for victory.”

Rudelsdorf raised his cup high.

“If there’s something that’s worth to pray for, it clearly would be for the quality of food here to improve.”

Zettois also raised his cup in response, while at the same time showing a bitter smile on his face.

“... It is probably easier to pray for the war to end quickly than having that answered.”


Despite the bitter expression shown on their faces, they still faithfully maintained the principle of eating military rations whenever possible. Nevertheless, neither of them attempted to conceal their thoughts of wanting to dine out.

Footnotes? Will add later~

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