The Mech Touch Chapter 885 No Ejection
When he saw that the enemy formed battlelines and charged forward in a ragged mess, he thought the Warriors would easily be able to break the backs of these unruly dogs.
Reality proved much different from his expectations! The Warriors had always considered the Vandals and pirates as scum who only won through trickery and misdirection. The Vesians never imagined their foe to be so ferocious and undaunting in a pitched battle!
"And these Swordmaidens?! Who the hell are they? Some kind of force of exiled elites!"
Though the Swordmaiden mechs exhibited very poor coordination and teamwork, their hyper-aggressive approach forced the Hostland Warriors into a passive state. They constantly needed to hold the line against these madwomen who knew no fear! No matter how disadvantageous it might be for them to push forward, they threw themselves forward without any regard for logic or safety!
This normally wouldn't fluster the Hostland Warriors so much were it not for the Vandals following after their aggressive allies. The Vandals knew exactly how the Swordmaidens fought and neatly covered their backs, preventing the Warriors from surrounding the Swordmaidens any further.
The battle in the center devolved into a contest of attrition! With the fighting constantly heating up, casualties mounted in quick succession. Dozens of mechs fell before fatal spear strikes or enormously powerful sword chops.
"Hold on! Keep fighting!"
"Don't you dare die before you take a Warrior mech down with you! Our comrades are counting on us!"
It not only became a contest of arms, but also a contest of willpower! The Hostland Warriors arrived on the battlefield with confidence born of their inherent superiority over their foes. Their mech regiment was made to fight these kinds of battles!
The excellent performance of the Meandering Monkeys in the previous skirmishes also inflated their confidence in the previous days. The mech pilots of the Meandering Monkeys constantly bragged about how they ran rings around the enemy light mechs.
This gave the Warriors the mistaken impression that they could easily crush the pathetic enemy mechs in a straightforward battle.
Yet the truth proved to be different, and it mostly came down to willpower!
The Swordmaidens already possessed a lot of courage. Yet the grit and courage of the Flagrant Vandals not only surprised the Vesians, they even surprised themselves.
They hadn't become affected by the dwindling morale or the despair that spread when word of Venerable Xie's assassination spread throughout the camp.
Ves guessed that the mental resilience training sessions that he invented contributed significantly to the strength exhibited by the Vandal mech pilots. They learned how to cope with pressure and continue fighting even with the entire galaxy stacked against them! Even as their mechs got banged up or received near-fatal damage, they still fought as if they didn't know how to retreat!
"Our mech pilots aren't ejecting!" Someone in the headquarters yelled.
"The Swordmaiden mech pilots aren't ejecting either!"
The Vandal and Swordmaiden mech pilots collectively came to an accord. They decided to fight to the death in the truest sense of the phrase. They cut off nearly every possibility of ejecting from their mech in favor inflicting maximum damage to their enemy!
Once the Hostland Warriors realized this, their courage flagged a bit. A mech pilot with nothing to lose became an atrocious opponent. They fought twice as hard as normal and traded wounds without any hesitation if the situation called for it! The only instances where they ejected was if their mechs had already become crippled.
"There are still some spare mechs back in camp! Let's board them and go back into the battle!"
The mech pilots of the Hostland Warriors didn't possess the same determination. Since they believed they held the upper hand against their enemy, they never even considered making a pact to fight to the death.
This behavior was far too crazy!
"Hahahaha! Die! Die! Die!"
"Kill them all! If I can take one more Warrior down with me, then I haven't lived my life in vain!"
"Look at the Warrior mechs beginning to hesitate. Are these the Vesians we've been so afraid about? Their courage is not even a tenth of ours!"
"Hahaha! Look at these cowardly Warrior mech pilots pulling the ejection lever when their precious mechs suffer some scratches. Pansies!"
The deadly battle in the center slowly swung in favor of the Flagrant Swordmaidens despite their obvious weaknesses. If the mech pilots of the Hostland Warriors continued to keep their cool, then they might have noticed that their opponents left a lot of openings.
Yet the unmatched aggression of the Vandals and Swordmaidens was like a punch in the face! The disoriented Hostland Warriors were constantly being put on the backfoot. The only reasons why they hadn't collapsed yet was because their discipline forced them to hold out while their resilient mechs bought them a lot of time.
Even though the Flagrant Swordmaidens made a lot of strides in the center, their mechs couldn't entirely keep up.
The Devil Razors especially incurred an increasing amount of battle damage. While their mobility and offensive power more than matched the Hostland Warriors, Mayra hadn't been able to invest in much of their defenses.
The workhorse mechs of the Swordmaidens started falter in their aggression. The accumulated battle damage along with the steady counterattacks of the Hostland Warriors continued to deplete the combat effectiveness of the Devil Razors.
The Silver Valencias were different, and held out longer than their cheaper cousin. Each Swordmaiden piloting a Silver Valencia were all veteran Swordmaidens who possessed a considerable amount of skill. All of them entangled the officers of the Hostland Warriors, preventing them from running wild in their superior mechs and skills.
To Ves, the battle in the center slowly reached a new equilibrium. While the Warriors didn't have an answer against the courage shown by the Flagrant Swordmaidens, they nonetheless trusted their defenses to hold out long enough to wait for a change in conditions.
"They're patient buggers."
"The Vesians are smarter than they look. They know we're going to run out of steam faster when we fight this hard."
Energy expenditure became an increasingly more important factor the longer the battle stretched on. While the Flagrant Swordmaidens possessed more energy reserves, it still took time to withdraw their mechs and replenish their exhausted energy cells.
The problem right now was that the Vandals and Swordmaidens couldn't afford to let up on their push! As long as they withdrew, the Hostland Warriors would lose their constraints and be able to employ advanced formations!
Someone in the command center observed something alarming. "Our ranged mechs are getting pushed back! They're not as skilled as the Warriors!"
The Vandal rifleman mechs couldn't match the Warrior rifleman mechs in quality or skill. The only advantage they held was that they fought without concern for energy, but even this advantage was fleeting because of heat constraints.
Almost every Vandal rifleman mechs ran piping hot at this stage! Steam billowed out of their frames and the mechs all employed their emergency coolants to keep the heat at bay.
Having reached the limits of their heat capacity, the fire rate of their laser rifles abruptly reduced, giving their Warrior counters plenty of room to breathe.
Unlike the Vandal ranged mechs, the Warriors exercised much greater trigger discipline. They always fired their laser rifles steadily in order to pour down a steady amount of lasers in the midst of their enemies.
Each laser beam landed close or on the Vandal mechs with disturbing regularity!
"Their lasers are hammering us like clockwork! They're timing their shots!"
As for the light mechs, the Vandals and Swordmaidens simply weren't able to field as much as the Meandering Monkeys. The Vesian reconnaissance regiment consisted almost entirely of light mechs so possessed a decisive advantage in this area. The number of Vandal and Swordmaiden light mechs reduced at an alarming rate!
The only area in which the defenders gained the advantage was when they employed their heavy mechs. The ten Akkara mechs unloaded laser beam after laser beam at their distant foes. Their steady targeting and prodigious firepower enabled them to down any enemy mech as long as they enjoyed a clear line of sight!
The only problem was that the battle in the center became jam-packed with mechs from both sides. The tight ranks of Swordmaidens and Vandals prevented the Akkara heavy mechs from blasting the enemy center with impunity.
Instead, they split up and supported the faltering flanks with suppressive firepower. While this wasn't the best way to use them, at the very least the sparser flanks precluded the chance that they would hit their own side.
"Thanks for the help, big guys!"
This temporary propped up the flanks of the Flagrant Swordmaidens and prevented them from collapsing.
The pitched battle devolved into a number of stalemates on all fronts. Mechs continued to be downed by the dozens, but at this rate, the losses sustained by the Hostland Warriors threatened to become extremely egregious.
Even if the Vesians won at the end, they would only be able to enjoy a pyrrhic victory! What was the meaning of killing a thousand men but losing eight-hundred men in the process? None of the Hostland Warriors wanted to be part of the eight-hundred men that sacrificed their lives to achieve this victory.
"These Vandals and Swordmaidens are too tenacious!"
"We should regroup!"
This psychological tendency caused the center of the Hostland Warriors to fall back time and time again. Unlike the Flagrant Swordmaidens, they hadn't mentally prepared themselves to fight to the death!
It was at this time that a booming broadcast engulfed the entire battlefield!
This single word came with such volume and force of will that it practically forced the Swordmaidens to come out of their blood haze. All of the mechs paused for some reason!
The Vandal and Swordmaiden mechs unwillingly took a step back now that they lost their momentum.
The Hostland Warriors in the center split into two as if someone parted a sea. A single, resplendent mech strode forward in the space opened up by the Warrior mechs.
The Warrior mechs acted as if royalty graced their presence. This was not a normal mech!
The Vandal and Swordmaiden mechs on the other hand couldn't help but take a couple of steps back. They felt a faint but unimaginably potent pressure in the back of their minds. Merely glimpsing at the approaching mech caused their instincts to rebel.
In the command center at the rear, before anyone asked a question, Ves already spoke up. "The Hostland Warriors brought out an expert mech. This is absolutely not a simple expert mech either!"
The expert mech that emerged wore the regimental colors of the Hostland Warriors with pride. However, it also carried a small amount of embellishment that denoted its extraordinary status.
The exquisite machine was a customized swordsman mech that not only carried a sword, but a small arsenal of auxiliary weapons. However, Ves didn't pay too much attention on its varied loadout or its simple but incredible firm design.
"That expert mech incorporates a huge amount of Rorach's Bone!"
"What?! Isn't that the exotic material all the forces recently fought for at the Glowing Planet?!"
A mech laced with Rorach's Bone was absolutely not a trivial machine! Such a mech gained the ability to regenerate battle damage as long as it had access to a source of energy. The more Rorach's Bone a mech incorporated, the faster and more extensive this regeneration process became.
Usually, a mech that consisted of one or two percent of Rorach's Bone was an extravagant luxury that few forces could afford. Such a ratio already made a mech unkillable over long engagements because they could constantly regenerate their exterior battle damage at the cost of expending some energy cells.
Yet the expert mech that appeared from the rear of the Hostland Warriors paled in comparison to those examples.
Ves simply couldn't believe his eyes at what he saw! Yet all of the sensors pointed in the direction of the expert concurred with his initial impression.
"An entire third of this expert mech consists of Rorach's Bone! It's regeneration abilities are insane!"
The Vandals in the command center didn't understand the magnitude of the situation. This expert mech incorporated so much Rorach's Bone that the Hafner Duchy practically wasted half of its quota of this valuable exotic on a single mech!
This was pure extravagance!