Retreating to the Enemy Headquarters 1

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It was the dirt-covered [Mistilteinn] that welcomed Kisei and Saki once they got back to the main force.
The place is unusually quiet due to the absence of the shells that have been raining on them over the past few days.

“Ahh, thank goodness.
You made it in time.”

The [Mistilteinn] approaches the [Caliburn-Revive] before opening its cockpit hatch.
Schleer jumped out from the inside, her expression filled with bitterness.

“You said that the fleet is under attack?”

Kisei, who also came out of his cockpit, had to raise his eyebrows at Schleer’s expression.
There have been many occasions where she seems troubled by the situation but not to this extent.

“Wasn’t our fleet supposed to take a distance and observe the enemy in case the enemy fleet showed up? How did they get ambushed?”

Saki asked in a moody voice.
Even though Tersis got in their way, they still managed to produce a good battle result in their previous raid.
Nevertheless, being met with such a setback, she can’t help but find her mood ruined.

“The open water should give clear visibility and there’s no way that they would be able to deceive our radar.
They must have set up something to ambush us like this…….”

“They came from underwater.
The enemy fleet suddenly surfaced right next to ours.”


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Saki raised her voice in surprise.
Kisei also groaned with his arms crossed.
After all, even a veteran like Kisei has never seen such a maneuver before.

“Even if a spaceship can dive underwater they should not come with the same spec as a real submarine.
Something that big should make a lot of noises right.
How come we could not detect them with our sonar.”

Being built to withstand the vacuum of space, all spaceships are completely airtight.
They should be strong enough to withstand water pressure as well.
With an anti-gravity engine, a spaceship should be able to operate just fine underwater without relying on a ballast tank.
However, they should only be on the level of operable.
They can’t utilize their full speed underwater and they should be very noisy as well.
In short, spaceships usually are easily detectable underwater.
Navigation aside, using them in an ambush like this should be impossible.

“That’s…….it seems that they have been submerged there even before we anchored.”

“It’s already been a few days since we anchored there right…….you are saying that they have been down there all this time!?”

Saki was speechless.
Certainly, they would have little risk of being detected that way.
However, it must have been very hard for them to stay submerged there without making a single noise for days.

“The fact that they did not move at all when we landed means that they were waiting for our main force to head inland first.
They are quite nasty huh.”

Impressed, Kisei laughed.
On the other hand, Schleer shows a bitter expression at his carefree attitude.

“This is no time to laugh, you know.
Right now we must head back to join our fleet as soon as possible……”

“This is the 08th Recon platoon! A large army is coming in toward our location from the north! It’s an enemy attack, ma’am!”

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Their conversation was suddenly interrupted by a tense report.
After receiving the data from the recon platoon, Schleer immediately put it up on her sub-monitor and confirms it.

“Wha……! They are deploying this many troops!? I see, so that’s why they stopped the bombardment…….damn it, they got us!”

Schleer unintentionally swore.
That is inevitable given a large number of enemies heading their way.
It is clear that they’ve planned this from the beginning.

“This looks really bad, isn’t it.
If we do this poorly, we will be caught between the enemy fleet and their ground units then……..”

“Perfectly sandwiched huh.”

“That’s not funny you know.”

Saki frowned at Kisei’s joke.
However, they certainly can not afford to intercept the enemy here first before heading back to rescue their fleet.
Generally speaking, a Noredian fleet should be more powerful than a Calencian one.
Without striker support, it’s impossible for them to win in a head-on fight.

“We have no choice but to retreat……but, it would be too much if we have to withdraw while warding off the enemy on our back.”

“We might be able to win if we can fight them properly but, if we have to move back to protect our fleet as well……that would be rather difficult.
The enemy commander is quite capable.”

“Diaroze……ugh, even though I already expected her to pull something, to think that I couldn’t even do anything against it!”

Schiller hit the armor plate on her cockpit.

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“We are in a pinch huh.”

Seeing that, Kisei grinned.
He then jumped onto the [Mistilteinn] and gently squeezed Schleer’s hand.

“But I’m here for a time like this right.”

“Ki, Kisei-san……?”

While blushing from having her hand suddenly grabbed, Schleer cocked her head to the side.
Her expression is asking him what he’s planning to do in a situation like this.

“For the time being, everyone should retreat toward the fleet.
I and…..sorry, Saki will separate from the main force and intercept the enemy.”

“Ahh? Me? Sure, I don’t mind.”

In the first place, Saki isn’t fond of running away with a tail between her legs.
If the Nored army is planning to ambush them, she would rather face the ambush head-on despite the danger.

“Are you planning to be our rearguard? If that’s the case then I will…..”

Schleer needs to stay and lead the army.
We will act separately on this one.”

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“…..what are you planning?”

Having an unpleasant premonition, Schleer asked.
In reply, Kisei gives his answer with a bitter smile.

“We will rush directly toward the center of the enemy formation.
That should kill their momentum and prevent them from pursuing you.”

“Isn’t that the Shimazu’s escape!?”

Hearing that all too bold of a plan, Saki retorted.

“……y, you’re well-informed huh.”

Kisei was taken aback by Saki’s unexpected reference.
Even for a Terran, aside from a few history buffs, that reference is not that particularly well-known though……

TLN: The Shimazu’s escape is a story about how the Shimazu clan escaped from the battle of Sekigahara in Sengoku period.

The mad lads rode through the center of the enemy formation and broke the encirclement.
at the same time they deployed suicide squad to stall their pursuers killing a lot of the Tokugawa soldiers.

And yes, the Shimazu’s lord managed to escape.

Look it up if you are interested, or go watch the clip of the opening scene of the anime Drifter on youtube for “Accurate Depiction”.

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