This Bastard is Too Competent Chapter 96 - The Battle of Honor
Olak couldn’t readily answer.
The reason was obvious.
‘If things go wrong, I might be branded a traitor.’
It was no simple matter for a warrior to entrust his banner to someone.
Much less handing the banner over to the enemy’s royal family.
‘I don’t know if that prince knows what that means…’
No, that guy clearly knew what he was saying.
Olak could tell from Ian’s expression.
That was why he was sure.
‘This country may really fall into his hands.’
Naturally, he could feel immense pressure weighing on his shoulders. But his silence didn’t last long.
“Please promise me a few things.”
Ian’s lips curled up into a smile at Olak’s words, his eyes prompting him to go ahead and speak.
Olak seemed to have made up his mind. He opened his mouth with a determined gaze.
“My banner is to be used only for the honor of the warrior. Never use it for anything but that.”
“And make sure not to shed the blood of my people besides the warriors as much as possible.”
Ian’s eyes gleamed.
He understood what Olak’s words implied. It meant that his name was not to be sold outside of the Great Warrior duel. Also, he showed his responsibility as a leader of the country to protect his people.
Well, it wasn’t a difficult request.
Of course, the results might not go the way Olak wanted it to.
“I promise I will use it only for the honor of the warrior. I will also avoid shedding the blood of your people to the best of my ability.”
“That’s good enough.”
Olak rose from his seat.
His limbs were tightly bound. When Ian gave a signal with his eyes, the soldiers released him.
Ian shouted to the soldiers.
“Return the kept banner to him.”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
Olak was soon able to get his banner back.
It was a banner made of leather with a huge white tiger painted in the middle. However, as soon as Olak received the banner, he threw it on the ground.
The knights shouted in surprise.
A banner was like a symbol of oneself.
Even though he was a prince of the enemy country, his action was too irrational. Fiosen tried to stop Olak’s action, but Ian intervened.
“Your Highness, he is now trying to defile the banner he’s about to give to you.”
“No, he is not.”
“The Great Warrior banner is special. It was for a purpose.”
It was information that Ian could know because he had heard a lot about it during the Northern Expedition of his previous life.
Because the Great Warrior banner was special.
It could not simply be called the Great Warrior banner.
Sure enough. Olak stretched out his hand.
“Give me a sword.”
“Here you go.”
Fiosen stopped him when Ian tried to give the sword himself. It was dangerous no matter what. Instead, he signaled with his eyes at the soldier next to him and handed him a short sword.
Upon accepting the sword, Olak slashed his arm.
Blood gushed out of his arm.
But Olak seemed to be alright. Then, with his blood, he drew a new pattern on the banner. In no time, the pattern of a red-blood tiger instead of a white tiger was completed.
Olak took the banner and held it out to Ian with a tense face.
“Don’t forget your promise.”
“Of course. I promise on everything I own.”
Ian also walked forward and received the banner with both hands.
It was a gesture of respect for Olak.
The soldiers, as well as the knights, opened their eyes in amazement.
Even if Olak was the heir to the throne, Ian didn’t need to do this far to a prisoner.
But Ian smiled.
“Even if he is a prisoner, he will get what he deserves. It is only fair to give him this level of courtesy.”
“But… Your Highness…”
“Thanks to him, we have less blood to shed. Isn’t that so, Sir Fiosen?”
Fiosen stepped back as if he understood.
Ian then made up his mind.
‘Giving up the banner as Bahara’s successor requires great determination. He deserves more than this.’
The banner’s use didn’t end with this here only.
For the bigger picture, Olak needed to be on his side a little longer.
So, Ian smiled slightly at Olak.
A new sense of respect that was different from before was budding in him.
“Thank you for your determination, Lord Olak. I will promise you that I will never tarnish your will.”
“Lord Olak is no longer a prisoner. Treat him as an equal with me from now on!”
Ian’s shout resounded throughout.
At his declaration, the soldiers, and even Olak, stared at him wide-eyed. Fiosen tried to stop him, saying that it was too much.
However, Ian was never one to go back on his words.
Instead, he hoisted the banner he received from Olak and got on Blue Emperor.
“We will start climbing the mountain now.”
Then he began to take the lead.
Surprised by his actions, the knights rushed out.
“Your Highness! It’s dangerous!”
“Even if Your Highness received the banner, you can’t be at the forefront.”
“It’s not alright! What should we do if something happened to Your Highness?”
Even the soldiers looked at him anxiously.
However, Ian was resolute.
“It is a great disgrace to them to attack anyone who holds this banner. And this is something I have to do.”
“I received it, so I also have to take responsibility. It is something I can never leave to anyone else.”
Bahara’s definition of honor was different from Kaistein’s.
They believed that only they could win their own honor. Therefore, those who carried this banner had to overcome it with their own strength. Only then could Bahara be brought into complete submission.
That wasn’t the only thing.
‘Soon, my brothers and sisters will be here. Before that, I must surely set this in stone.’
So that they knew that he was not simply someone who pushed his luck or was carried by his subordinates.
He needed to show them that he was not a competitor they could take lightly.
Then Ian slowly began to take the lead.
At the sight, the soldiers made way for Ian to go forward.
It was as if they were overpowered by the pressure he exuded. Taking the lead, Ian raised Olak’s banner on the pole.
And he shouted.
“All troops! Advance!”
Following Ian, the soldiers began to climb the mountain in perfect order.
Bahara’s Molar Castle. Yamanta, the lord and general of the castle, leaned against a tree and groaned.
The soldiers came running to him.
“General! Are you all right?”
“I’m fine. How is he?”
Yamanta’s favorite goat. The combat goat, who had been with him all his life, had yet to regain consciousness.
The problem was that he was forcing their way through the wall of fire. Even Yamanta had suffered severe burns, so it wasn’t a surprise.
His favorite goat’s wounds weren’t just the only problem.
Looking to the side, he could see many of the soldiers who were injured.
“Is that all?”
They were undoubtedly close to 5,000 soldiers when they set off to war. However, now only about 300 people were left.
Yamanta gritted his teeth.
“Without fail… I will take revenge for sure. I will rip his heart out and chew it alive.”
“We will definitely be with you then, General.”
As he led his soldiers like defeated soldiers and reached the castle.
One of the soldiers saw something in the direction of the castle.
“Huh? What is it?”
Yamanta raised his head at the soldier’s startled voice.
However, his eyes widened beyond measure in the next second.
He had no choice but to do so.
It was because there was no one at the wall where the guards were supposed to be guarding. No, not even a shadow was in sight.
Only the torches were left.
Even Bahara’s flag was missing.
He couldn’t help being shocked at the sight.
“Wh… what the hell happened? It hasn’t been a few hours since we’ve been away from our castle!”
“I… I have no idea either, General.”
It was understandable especially for Yamanta to be dismayed.
He was sure he had left his adjutant and soldiers behind just to be safe.
‘Oh, did they move to save us? And then we missed each other on the way?’
Of course, the chances of that happening were very slim.
But it was clear that something wrong happened in the castle.
It was when the surprised Yamanta approached the Molar Castle in haste.
An arrow stuck in front of him.
Surprised, Yamanta shouted.
“What the hell is this! Don’t you know who I am?!”
However, the reply that came left him dumbfounded.
“I’m sorry, but the owner of this place has already changed.”
No, it was clearly a reply in a sarcastic tone.
Of course, it had to be so
It was not Bahara’s soldier who answered. It’s Nathan, one of Ian’s knights.
“Y… you can’t be… Kaistein’s…?”
“Well, well. To think that the highly renowned Lord Yamanta would recognize such an insignificant knight as I am. Isn’t this but a great honor?”
“How did you get there…”
Nathan raised his hand.
With a gesture of his hand, there was a change in the Molar Castle. Flags rose above the torches. It was the flag of Kaistein and Ian’s banner.
While they were dispatched, the enemy occupied the Molar Castle.
His adjutant was also held by Nathan’s side.
Knowing that Yamanta was in danger, he rushed to dispatch troops, but Nathan and the cavalry troops of the Blue King were already waiting at the gate. All of them, who were pushed back at once, had long since become prisoners.
Nathan shouted out loud.
“The former owners are longing for the taste of arrows! Shoot them at once!”
Thunk thunk thunk!
Bahara’s troops were already exhausted.
There was no way they could hold on as arrows were raining down on them.
Not taking a second longer, they started to run away from the castle.
“S… such a disgrace… To have our castle taken away so easily.”
“What should we do, General?”
Yamanta clenched his teeth tightly.
In the front, Ian’s army was catching up to them, and in the back, the castle they trusted was taken away and they were hit by a hail of arrows.
There was only one way.
“Take the shortcut and get out of here. We will join the other units first.”
“That’s impossible, General! If you enter another unit, they will look down at you!”
That said, Yamanta couldn’t lead his beat men to fight Ian.
No, it was when he thought there was no other option.
At his subordinate’s urgent call, Yamanta’s eyes widened.
His body couldn’t help but tremble.
It was inevitable.
What he saw in front of him was the banner belonging to Ian, who had followed them before he knew it. It was not just the banners; thousands of troops surrounded them.
Ian and his men in the front, and Nathan’s men guarding the castle in the back.
It was a complete checkmate.
Yamanta and Bahara soldiers all gritted their teeth.
“Seems like this place will be our last. Then let’s die like a warrior at least for one last time!”
“We will follow you, General!”
The moment they steeled their resolve.
Kaistein’s troops split up, making a way.
No, it didn’t end at that.
Blue Emperor was approaching them. The one riding there was, of course, Ian Kaistein.
Ian spoke to Yamanta in a cold voice.
“Are you Yamanta, the lord of the Molar Castle?”
Yamanta was so flabbergasted that he couldn’t even utter a single word.
He never once imagined the opponent whose heart he just vowed to eat would show up like this.
‘He is a kid who hasn’t even had a coming-of-age ceremony yet!’
But this pressure was never something a snobbish kid could give off.
The Ian before him now gave off a fierce aura in his gaze, as if he had been on the battlefield for decades.
Yamanta didn’t even dare to raise his weapon.
It was then.
Ian raised the banner that had been placed on Blue Emperor’s back and threw it.
It’s obviously a banner with a familiar pattern on it.
Yamanta as well as Bahara soldiers immediately recognized the banner.
“N… no way. Isn’t this Prince Olak’s?”
“It’s not just any banner! It is the Great Warrior banner!”
“What? How could that Kaistein bastard have His Highness’s Great Warrior banner!”
Everyone was shocked, their mouths agape.
Their reaction was only natural.
That banner belonged to the man closest to the successor position among the Bahara royal family they followed.
But the problem was Ian’s attitude.
‘Throwing the Great Warrior banner at the opponent means fighting a battle of honor. No way…’
Even if Yamanta was injured, that kid tried to fight the man who had risen to the position of general with that exact body.
However, they had no choice but to gulp nervously at Ian’s words that soon followed.
“I respect you. Therefore, I propose the honorable Great Warrior duel. How is it? Will you fight me?”
It wasn’t just his words.
Ian’s aura riding on Blue Emperor suppressed them with terrifying might.
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