Release that Witch Chapter 616
Harsh and piercing booms were everywhere.
All that Zero could hear between these booms were faint cries of pain.
The frontline was a vanguard formed by God's Punishment Warriors, while the backline was the slowly advancing Judgement Army. This was the "Big Shield" formation that was rehearsed to deal with the swarm attacks of demonic beasts, but it was equally effective against crossbows and flintlocks. The iron shields, which were each only as thick as a finger, were able to deflect volleys of arrows, and could not be penetrated by Timothy's imitation flintlocks. Their only disadvantage was that they were excessively heavy, and thus only the God's Punishment Army could carry them into battle.
However, this time, it lost its effectiveness.
Every now and then, a God's Punishment Warrior would be split into two by iron balls that came whizzing towards him, and even the people standing behind could be struck by the same ball. Blood quickly burst out of the bodily punctures created by these balls. Those warriors who did not die on the spot would clutch on to their innards or limbs and scream in pain, unintentionally sapping the morale of their comrades who were still fighting.
"This can't continue. Get the God's Punishment Army to charge!" an assistant shouted.
"I agree, Lord Soli." Another commander seconded while clutching his fists. "These iron balls can only travel in a straight line, and can't be fired too quickly. The right thing for us to do is to spread out, and then we won't be easily targeted anymore!"
"Got it. Pass down my orders to spread out our formation and perform a full charge!"
Zero heard Soli Daal issuing an order to attack.
However, right at this moment, a new kind of weapon entered the battlefield.
It sounded like an incessant sequence of raindrops, yet also like the buzz of gold daggers striking against one another. A cloud of smoke suddenly rose up in front of the charging warriors and caused them to fall on the ground like cut wheat. It was impossible for Zero to see where the attack was coming from.
The commanders' faces turned white all at once.
Everyone knew that the outcome of this battle was decided.
Zero heard a sudden hissing sound piercing through the air. It was sharp yet cryptic, like the utterance of a viper.
She turned her gaze towards the direction that the sound was coming from. She subconsciously wanted to hide from it, but quickly remembered that the body she was in did not belong to her.
Unfortunately, Soli Daal did not have a fraction of her alertness.
A single iron ball fell from midair and bounced on the ground directly in front of him. As it rebounded up high, it brushed across his body.
Zero could only feel her vision spinning in circles before she fell on the ground.
Fresh blood gushed out from Soli's shoulders. The place where his arm should be had become vacant. He clenched his teeth to prevent himself from crying in pain.
The people around him frantically gathered around.
"My goodness gracious, your hand..."
"Retreat, get all of them to retreat!"
"Bring Lord Soli away from this place, and I'll stay behind!"
Her recollection broke off at this point.
Zero opened her eyes. In front of her once again were God's stone prisms and the Pivotal Secret Temple deep underground.
"So that's what happened." She lowered her head and grinned uncontrollably.
In this case, everything makes sense now.
Why Roland Wimbledon was able to become from the low-profile lord of Border Town to the new king of Graycastle; why he was able to defeat the duke's knightage and the 2nd Prince's crazed army time and time again, and was even able to seize King's City within a day—this was the reason.
The continuous booms, the smell of gunpowder smoke in the air... these things proved the existence of a new kind of firearm that was vastly superior to Timothy's imitation snow powder pipes.
If Zero had not "personally witnessed" it, she would never have imagined that snow powder weapons could be so powerful.
Of course, she knew that it was not a secret passed down within the Wimbledon family, or else Timothy and Garcia would not be ignorant of it.
Without a doubt, Roland had encountered something in Border Town which allowed him to have today's success.
Another possibility was that he had mastered the ancient tricks of some secluded family—ever since the Union was dissolved, a few builders and designers who had aided the local people were no longer in touch. Many of them possessed specialized skills and crafts, and therefore it was possible that one of them had devised these ingenious weapons.
Or, perhaps, the weapons were found in some ruins hidden deep in the Impassable Mountain Range. The historical records in the library had mentioned that there were a few strange ruins of unknown origin located around the border of Barbarian Land. In fact, it was the discovery of an underground labyrinth that had led to the eventual division of the Union.
But Zero was more inclined to believe that it was the ability of some witch that gave regular snow powder such deadly power.
This would also explain why Roland had changed his attitude, recruited witches in large numbers, and helped to clear the injustices they faced.
"Forget it, my speculation doesn't matter at all. No matter what the reason was, Roland Wimbledon knows best about it," thought Zero.
Zero knew that if she devoured Roland, she would get to understand everything about these weapons.
"Lady... Zero?" The guard captain standing at the cage exit asked worriedly, having not heard a sound from her for a long time.
Zero suppressed the excitement in her heart and waited until the grin on her face completely disappeared before she walked unhurriedly out of the cage. "I'm fine. Inform the intelligence agency to call back all of the pure witches that are still in Kingdom of Dawn."
"All?" The captain seemed astonished. "But the plan that you lay down before..."
"The decisive battle is about to begin," Zero explained slowly. "I want to see everyone."
There was no question that compared to Roland's knowledge, the Kingdom of Dawn's situation was insignificant.
"So powerful, such an amazing range of fire, and able to be used by anyone." Zero could understand its importance just by thinking about it.
If this weapon could be mass assembled before the Bloody Moon arrived, the Holy City's chances of defeating the demons would be significantly increased.
As for herself, she would be able to move one step closer to the divine will.
Deepvalley Town, the Northern Region of Kingdom of Graycastle.
After dinner, Iffy returned to her bedroom in the castle and immediately let out an uncontrollable yawn. In the past fortnight, apart from executing the Tooth Extraction Campaign, there was also no time for rest after reaching the small town. She not only had to assist the First Army in guarding their camp, but also then followed Edith and her entourage to Coldwind Ridge to resettle the local residents. Although she was extremely busy, she felt that her life was rather meaningful like this.
After her mood calmed down, she realized that the non-combat witches indeed possessed their own unique strengths. She also began to feel that aside from her abilities, she was not really different from most normal people.
As observed from her daily interactions with people, she was slowly being accepted by the members of the Witch Union. While she was performing a vigilance task, Maggie even said hello to her for the first time ever—despite Lightning looking unhappy about it.
Iffy did not expect them to forgive her, and instead, she hoped to make up for her wrongdoings through action. In fact, she did not care whether she could ultimately become a sister to them. She only focused on atonement.
Atonement for her one and only friend, Annie.
Just as she was about to go to bed, someone knocked on her door.
When she opened the door, she was surprised to see that it was the leader of Sleeping Island, Lady Tilly Wimbledon.
"I wish to talk to you about the Bloodfang Association." Tilly sighed softly. "As well as Heidi Morgan and... Annie."