Dragon Devouring Mage Chapter 242

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Dragon devouring mage

“……that’s all.”

With those words, the briefing came to an end as one of the staff officers concluded his report.

Russell, who had been listening to the explanation, let out a soft sound of contemplation.

“Hmm.”

The location where he now sat was the central command tent of the army, facing Triben Fortress across a plain.

Around him, there weren’t just the staff officers who had come with Russell, but also the military strategists who were already present in the area, all sitting in rows.

One of them started murmuring.

“Even if we plan a night raid, operating a large army will inevitably expose us to that impenetrable fortress…”

Baron Donovan.

He was not originally from this location, but rather, one of the staff officers who had accompanied Russell from the capital.

Pondering over the distinctive characteristics of Triben Fortress once again after hearing Donovan’s murmur, Russell directed a question to the seated strategists.

“What do you all think?”

Despite being a duke, holding a higher rank than the others, Russell used a tone filled with respect. The reason was simple.

He might sit in a higher position by title or individual skill, but…

‘At least as far as knowledge and experience of war goes, the others seated here surpass me.’

He used a respectful tone to convey his admiration for their wisdom and expertise.

Additionally, one reason was that the majority of the seated staff were quite a bit older than Russell.

At Russell’s inquiry, they exchanged glances before Baron Donovan was the first to speak.

“Why not deploy a separate detachment?”

“A separate detachment?”

“Yes, Your Highness.”

Nodding once, Donovan continued in a composed voice.

“There were two main reasons the enemy could predict the movements of our troops. The first is the plain, and the second is the high ground on which the walls are located, providing a clear view over the plain.”

To be precise, it was the synergy of these two factors that made their movements so detectable.

“That’s why I suggest using a separate detachment.”

Should a large force move, it might go unnoticed, but if a small, specialized detachment was used, the chances of detection by the enemy would be significantly reduced.

‘Using the darkness of night for the attack, such a detachment could certainly approach the walls without trouble.’

While it was possible to use the deployed detachment to assassinate the lord of the fortress, Baron Donovan’s intended strategy seemed different.

Thinking several moves ahead, like in a game of chess, Russell understood Donovan’s intention and nodded.

“We should operate not just one, but several separate detachments.”

“How would we…?!”

Shocked that his thoughts were read, Donovan’s eyes widened.

“Deploying several detachments upon the walls causing a distraction and breaking their surveillance over the plains, then moving the main forces that are on standby—that’s your plan, isn’t it?”

“Yes, that’s correct.”

Responding precisely to Russell’s understanding of the strategy’s core, Donovan registered a look of stunned admiration.

‘Remarkable insight…’

He had believed Russell to be a young man who had never experienced a large-scale war, despite having heard of his prowess.

Strategy and tactics—not magic. To teach him one thing and for him to understand ten would be an understatement, but he grasped the crux and anticipated the second and third steps with ease.

Indeed, it was this vision and insight that allowed him to reach such heights at a young age.

While Donovan quietly admired Russell, the latter continued to ponder over another aspect of using a separate detachment.

‘This would allow the army to approach the walls, but it’d be too risky for those in the detachments.’

Even if a number of detachments were used, they would still be outnumbered by the enemy forces within the fortress. If they were to create a distraction until the allied troops arrived, it would essentially be a death sentence.

‘Instead of that…’

Now, in a time of war on a battlefield, while it was inevitable to suffer some casualties and losses, Russell still wanted to minimize those if possible.

‘Maybe it’s better if I move alone rather than as a separate detachment.’

The Originality Magic of his master, Daria.

If he made use of the dwarves of firewood, he was confident he could turn the inside of the fortress into chaos.

‘Also, it might catch the enemy completely off guard.’

No one would expect a duke of his stature to charge alone into the heart of the enemy lines.

“Perhaps this way…”

Before he could share this idea with his officers, rapid footsteps approached from outside—thud thud thud.

The sound stopped right at the entrance of the strategists’ tent.

“─?!”

All seated at the table turned their heads toward the entrance as one of the generals called out.

“What’s the matter?”

“Please, you’re needed outside immediately!”

In reply to the question, the soldier who had dashed to the front of the tent caught his breath and answered in a polite tone.

“Step outside?”

Driven by curiosity, one of the strategists looked for Russell’s approval with his eyes before rising from his seat.

“What’s the reason?”

Sliding aside the tent cloth that served as a door, he asked, and the soldier standing before him handed him a spyglass, gesturing towards the distant direction of the empire’s fortress.

“Field Marshal, the Imperial forces have raised a flag to request a champion’s duel!”

“Champion’s duel?!”

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