“Woah, how big!”
Julia-kaasan said, looking up at the fortress’ outer wall.
“Yeah, because this fortress is a strategic position even along the border with Sonora-to. It was made to be solid so that we can hole up if necessary. Even at the lowest position, the ramparts are 10.5 metres tall.”
Our carriage crosses the fortress drawbridge as we listen to Alfred-tousan’s explanation.
I lean out the carriage window and point my finger at the approximately 5-metre wide moat below the drawbridge.
“Ed really is clever. That’s right, that moat is also an important defence. Soldiers aren’t able to cling to the walls, and it prevents them from getting close with a battering ram as well. As long as we raise the drawbridge, the only way to capture this fort is to fill in this moat.”
Dad, who was saying that the quantity of water in the moat was a scheme as well, was just like a papa who invited his child for a workplace field trip.
“This fortress can accommodate 5000 military personnel at the most. But even so, that’s only at the utmost maximum, and there are approximately 1500 people now. Combined with the 2000 stationed in the city beyond, there’s a total of 3500 people under my leadership.”
Saying that, Father puffs out his chest in pride.
To be entrusted with so many soldiers at age 39 is probably an amazing thing.
However, the military force he is able to command with his level 4 [Leadership] is 4000 so it’s a little short.
[Appraisal] seems to be quite a rare skill, so they might have no choice but to approximate through experience, saying ‘it should be fine if it’s this much’.
It might simply be related to the number of soldiers in Santamana Kingdom though.
As we were listening to Dad’s explanation, the carriage crossed the drawbridge, and entered inside the ramparts.
The carriage stopped in front of the large building at the core.
Several knights in armour came running out from the rustic building, giving the impression that it was ‘Truly a fortress!’
“Welcome back, Commander-sama!”
“Mn, I appreciate your efforts.”
Dad raised his hand casually, smiling cheerfully.
“There were no outstanding abnormalities in regards to Sonora-to’s national border during Commander-sama’s leave of absence. It was very peaceful!”
Dad replied smilingly, looking up at the fortress building.
“What about the other forts, any abnormalities?”
“No! Or so I would like to say, but…”
“Hm, what’s the matter?”
“Count Grusha(グルシャー) requested for 1000 soldiers to be sent to Zakholtz (ザックホルツ) fortress in the north, but that was this morning.”
“According to the information we’ve received, the mercenary group <Black Wolf Fang> entered our country through the north road, with the intention of pillaging, after having been involved in resolving the internal strife within Sonora-to and losing their field of operations.”
“The <Black Wolf Fang> did…… I understand, let’s round up some soldiers.”
“Is that alright? I believe sending a thousand soldiers will weaken our defences here though.”
“It can’t be helped. The <Black Wolf Fang> is a gathering of ruffians with the intent of pillaging, but their skills as a mercenary group is high. If Zakholtz makes a mistake by some chance, the suffering that the town and villages behind that will go through…… Fortunately, the defences of this fortress are quite solid. Even with the remaining 500 soldiers, there should be no problem if it’s only for a short while. From the city behind…… that’s right, order half of the thousand soldiers to be sent from there.”
“Understood. In that case, I will begin organising the troops in haste!”
“Yeah, I’ll leave it to you.”
The knight in armour executed a sharp salute, and then advanced towards the building.
I received a deep impression of Dad’s commanding manner, which he had thoroughly mastered.
His expression was kind and polite, but Dad grasped the situation quickly, immediately made a decision, and gave out clear instructions.
I worked as an office worker in my previous life, but I never happened across bosses who would briskly promote me.
I even felt signs of the subordinate knights respecting Dad as well.
Suddenly struck with this thought, I look at Julia-kaasan.
“Ahh, the working Al-kun is also lovely!”
She said, as she was writhering about.
……In her arms, I sometimes felt as though I might slip out, so I used [Physics magic] while maintaining my posture so as to not be exposed.
After that, many other armoured knights turned up to seek instructions from Dad but he listened to the reports seriously and considered them, then issued instructions all without without losing his smile.
As one would expect after being away for two weeks, the reports were incessant.
Dad called a secretary and ordered them to guide Mum and I to the living quarters inside the fortress.
In the living quarters we were guided to, Mum and I finally were able to relax comfortably.
“Isn’t Daddy amazing~? Edgar-kun, you should watch Daddy’s working figure closely too, okay?”
Later when the sun descended, Dad showed up after he finished sending the reinforcement troops out to the other fortress, and borrowing the fortress parlour, we had dinner.
It was only a simple meal because we were in the fortress, but Mum continued to gaze at Dad and ate as if it was really delicious.
Having been breastfed before the meal, I only watched, but even inside this rustic fortress, us parents and child sitting in harmony was a good thing.
Dad also said, ‘I’m glad I brought you guys,’ and pat my head.
The day at the fortress passed just like that. Mum and I stayed a night at the fortress, planning to depart the next morning.
However, the next morning.
As we were making preparations to return home despite being loathe to part with Dad, a pale-faced knight in armour came barging in.
“What has happened?”
Dad’s face had relaxed completely after exchanging kisses with Mum, but it became tense in an instant.
“――I-it’s the enemy!”
“――A group that appears to be a mercenary group is heading here from the direction of Sonora-to in preparation for war! They number two thousand at the least! From the looks of the raised banner―― it’s the <Black Wolf Fang>!”
Dad raised his head to the sky.