Black Iron's Glory Chapter 345

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Siblings' Arrival

You performed amazingly well, far beyond our expectations,” General Miselk, the folksman of Ranger, said. He and a few other high-ranked officers welcomed Claude's arrival at folk headquarters. “On account of your contributions to the kingdom, I hereby promote you to colonel as the highest commanding officer of this folk. Congratulations, Colonel Claude. You are the youngest soldier to be made colonel in the kingdom's history.”

Everyone present broke into and applause. n.o.body objected to Claude's promotion at all. The results Tribe 131 achieved in Balingana and Robisto were breathtaking enough. Other things aside, the 15 thousand s.h.i.+ksan captives working as labourers on the Claude Defence Line was testament to that. Tribe 131 only consisted of around 1800 men and they managed to capture almost ten times their number.

Miselk personally switched Claude's shoulder mark for one with three silver moons and told him a few good news. First, all soldiers of Tribe 131 would be promoted one rank. Second, Tribe 131 would be expanded into a line, specifically, a special independent line. Their new name was Line 131.

The final piece of good news was a personal one. Due to the tribe's amazing achievements, General Miselk had personally vouched for Claude to request a n.o.ble t.i.tle for him from the Stellin royal family. If things went well, Claude would gain the t.i.tle of baron. Naturally, it wouldn't be a hereditary one. Only Claude could bear it.

The kingdom gave out three kinds of t.i.tles, the first was the hereditary kind and was the hardest to obtain. The royal family would give a manor to the recipient of a hereditary t.i.tle and the manor didn't have to pay taxes to the kingdom.

The second kind of t.i.tle was a trigenerational one. It could be pa.s.sed on three generations before it would drop a rank each generation until it faded into obscurity. For instance, if one's ancestor was given a trigenerational count t.i.tle and one's grandfather was the third generation count, one's father could inherit the t.i.tle as a viscount, and one would later inherit it as a baron. The baron's son wouldn't be able to inherit anything and would only be a dignitarian, and the baron's grandson would be born as a peasant and would have to rely on themselves to climb back up the ranks again.

Usually, recipients of trigenerational t.i.tles would also be given manors which were non taxable for three generations. But after that period of time, all produce from the manor would be taxable. However, there was another option. One could sell the t.i.tle back to the royal family for a sum of wealth to forge other paths to success.

The last type of t.i.tle was an honorary t.i.tle. It was personal and reserved only for the individual. For instance, the viscount t.i.tle Miselk obtained during the war five years ago was one such type and couldn't be inherited by his descendants. After his pa.s.sing, the t.i.tle would vanish with him, and the only benefit it had to the family was a rise in their social status, and his son would be easily able to obtain dignitarian status without working too hard.

Honorary t.i.tles didn't come with manors, but the recipient would receive a yearly stipend. If Claude could be made honorary baron, he would have an income of near a hundred crowns each year until his death. Additionally, his wife, Kefnie, could be addressed with the t.i.tle of baroness and any businesses under Claude's household would enjoy tax cuts and exemptions.

Basically, hereditary and trigenerational t.i.tles were only given out during the founding of Aueras and the restoration of the kingdom during Stellin IX's reign to those who contributed the most. Usually, the Stellin royal family really rarely gave out such t.i.tles. During the founding of the kingdom, all n.o.bles also needed fiefs to go with the t.i.tles, and that proved to eventually pose quite a lot of problems for the kingdom.

During the Restoration War in Stellin IX's time, the n.o.bles' power were greatly reduced and power was centralised in favour of the kingdom while also changing the manner in which t.i.tles were awarded. The reason Stellin IX handed out hereditary and trigenerational t.i.tles to his subjects with high achievements was to set the new standard. n.o.bles would no longer be given domain over their own fiefs. Manors took their places. When time came for Stellin X's rule, recipients of hereditary and trigenerational t.i.tles were far and few in between.

The reason Claude's late father, Morssen, and his a.s.sociates wanted to discover a new trade route was to earn a n.o.ble t.i.tle. Morssen wanted to elevate the Ferd family into the n.o.ble circle in the three southwestern prefectures. It was a shame that he had taken the wrong step that resulted in his tragic story. However, Claude managed to earn a t.i.tle recommendation with ihs own merits. Given his knighthood, which essentially made him a quasi-n.o.ble, it was almost certain that he would receive the t.i.tle of baron.

After Miselk held Claude's promotion ceremony, he began the war council. Ranger had safely arrived in Anfiston and the first batch of reinforcements did a great job in fulfilling their objectives. Claude's tribe's performance aside, Sevict's Line 034 had completed most of the construction work for Claude Defence Line and also reorganised the garrison forces in Anfiston.

As for Bolonik's Line 033, they had formed nine local garrison lines in the colonies of Tyrrsim, Mormaly and Aduras and gathered them in Anfiston. Coupled with the two garrison lines there, there were enough men to form a full-fledged garrison corps with some more left over.

During the meeting, Miselk decided to gather those garrison troops together into the kingdom's first open battle corps on Nubissia. Officers fro Ranger would be transferred there in bulk and the corps would be subordinate to Ranger. They would mainly be put to use in mounting a counteroffensive against s.h.i.+ks' colonial forces.

The first two targets for Ranger were Pancry in Robisto and Krado in Balingana. The strategists in folk command had a heated debate on which corps to attack first. In the end, Miselk made the decision to take on Pancry first.

Claude didn't really understand why. In terms of might, Pancry was easily a step higher than Krado. Pancry was the one that benefited the most from the supplies by the s.h.i.+ksan s.h.i.+ps during the rainy season of the 3rd month, and they still had a line of light cavalry. Krado, on the other hand, only had two lines of infantry as reinforcements without any cavalry to use as scouts.

Claude believed that they should go for the easier target, Krado, first, before launching an attack on Pancry. However, Miselk didn't think so. He explained that obliterating Pancry first would buy them time to reinforce the defences of Port Patres. The forces of Ranger had come to Anfiston with 12 heavy open-field cannons which they intended to use to fortify the walls of Port Patres.

With the 12 heavy cannons, Port Patres would be able to seal off Dorinibla River's ocean exit so that s.h.i.+ksan s.h.i.+ps could no longer resupply Krado using the river. Even if Krado got word of Pancry's extermination, they wouldn't be able to use Dorinibla River to escape.

Alternatively, if they wiped Krado out first, Pancry would be prepared for Ranger's arrival and might get the supply s.h.i.+ps to help them retreat. That way, Pancry couldn't be eliminated and it would affect General Miselk's strategy to cross Dorinibla to retake the fallen colnies.

Before attacking Pancry, Tribe 131 had to first enter Robisto to carry out a smokescreen operation. In other words, they had to set up a perimeter to prevent any scouts from Pancry to discover the approach of Ranger folk and its subordinates corps. That way, they wouldn't put up their guard and casualties to the Aueran forces would be minimised.

That was a rather easy mission for Claude. Even if Pancry got a new light-cavalry line in their recent reinforcements, Tribe 131's light-cavalry clan managed to effectively keep them suppressed and at bay. The scouts the enemy sent out in smaller groups would almost never return as usual, and the larger clans of scouts would instead be led into traps set up by Tribe 131 and forced to retreat from suffering too many casualties.

While the scouts could still remain active at a radius of 15 kilometres away from Pancry's camp, the moment they set out, they would encounter Tribe 131's own light cavalry. Pancry's scouts had a fifty percent chance of returning alive after encountering the ranger scouts and still manage to return to their camps within that area. But beyond that, it was certain death.

All Claude needed to do was to get his men to increase their suppression on the scouts of Pancry and reduce their active radius from 15 kilometres to 5. That way, they would be able to mask the rest of the forces as they made their way to the camp for a surprise attack. By the time Pancry noticed the reinforcements, they would be too preoccupied with dealing with Tribe 131 and their extermination would be set in stone.

However, there were three days before Ranger's departure. Claude still had to return to his tribe's camp to inform the men the good news of their promotions. The camp was currently situated at Lanu and Claude made his way back there quickly enough. What he didn't expect was that his siblings, Angelina and Bloweyk, were there waiting for him.

“Why are you here? Did something happen back home?” Claude asked with surprise and doubt. He hugged his grown up brother and stroked his little sister's hair.

Angelina pouted. “Claude, did you forget Blowk's age again? He's 20 now and has to serve in the force. Mom and Kefnie said that since he's going to serve, he might as well serve with you. That way, you can look after him.”

Claude slapped his forehead; he had really forgotten. He was eight years older than Bloweyk. He had turned 28 with the new year's and his brother had matured into a 20-year-old adult before he knew it. Actually, his brother had graduated from middle school at the age of 18 and had met requirements to serve, but as the five-year war had just ended around that time, the kingdom wasn't in dire need of new recruits, so service could be delayed a year or two. Now that he had hit that age, he had no choice but to enlist. So, Angelina and Bloweyk came looking for Claude.

“Myjack, take Blowk away and settle the paperwork,” Claude said.

It just so happened that claude received orders to expand his unit. Soon, Bloweyk was made a member of Tribe 131 and he served as Claude's orderman. He was a private and he would remain by Claude's side at all times.

Making one's own relative serve as one's orderman was an unspoken privilege afforded to high-ranking officers of the kingdom. Claude didn't have to answer to anyone for that. Additionally, he had spent far too much time away from his own brother and wanted to keep him close to observe how he had developed.

He instructed Myjack to get Angelina accommodation in Lanu as women weren't allowed to stay over in campsites. Later, Claude announced the promotion everyone in the tribe got and they broke into a flurry of cheers. Apart from Bloweyk, who had just enlisted and wasn't aware of anything, all the soldiers cheered excitedly.

Even though expansion and promotions were good news, Tribe 131 wouldn't be able to expand before exterminating Pancry and Krado. They still had two huge battles to fight. The soldiers that were promoted kept their original posts temporarily and would only be given higher positions when time came to rest and reorganise.

During the night, Claude had a good talk with Bloweyk. Soon, he came to understand that his brother was a rather worrisome fellow. Like Claude, Bloweyk got first place in the physical stream of middle school, but he didn't tie with anyone else like Claude did with Welikro. Bloweyk was the undisputed champion of the school.

Apart from that, there weren't many things Bloweyk could be proud of. His academic grades were a huge mess. Instructor Weckham had tried to no avail to teach him the best he could. He had brought it up time and again the fact that Claude was still able to get top ten in academic grades while getting number one in the physical stream, yet his little brother ranked among the last places.

Additionally, Bloweyk was quite an arrogant person in middle school. Unlike Claude, who had his three best friends he often hung out and went on adventures with, at least before his relations.h.i.+p with Eriksson suffered, Bloweyk was the boss thug in middle school. He didn't have any close friends, but did have tons of minions.

Not only that, Claude had often went on excursions with his friends, whereas Bloweyk went into the mountains and ancient forests alone to hunt. His guts and misadventures often made their mother worry day in and out. Angelina, however, was aware that Bloweyk had begun learning magic at the age of 16 like Claude and became a one-ring rune magus at 18.

For his first three tier-zero basic spells, Bloweyk chose Magus' Hands, Fine Control, Eye of Appraisal. He didn't learn Decomposition and Reconstruction as he didn't like doing alchemical experiments. For his other four basic spells,he engraved Magic Missile, Mental Shock, Sheila's Vine Wrap, and Thorn Wreath, which Angelina managed to reconstruct from the magic accessory Claude brought back.

Bloweyk had picked mostly combat spells as his basic spells, which was why he dared challenge the forests and mountains alone. He said that he was quite famous in Whitestag and was known as the hunter king, as he had once entered Swamp Kemda alone and killed three niros crocodiles, one of which was even larger than the one Claude got back then. He had heard about their skin being materials for magic scrolls and tomes from Angelina, so he wanted to have a tome of his own and went crocodile hunting.

Black Iron's Glory Chapter 345

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Black Iron's Glory Chapter 345 summary

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