Chapter LXXI

Beatrix was horrified at Aaron’s military prowess. She knew nothing of war, but even she understood that the cavalry charge had been a disaster, a major miscalculation on the rebels’ side. Combine this with the superior numbers on the side of the Crown, and there was no conceivable way that the rebels could win.

Once the cavalry were eliminated, and the screams of dying men and horses stopped, the infantry of guardsmen turned their attention to the rest of the rebel army. They began to advance, completely on their own, their numbers equalling only a few hundred, towards the rebels. Shocked, Beatrix watched with morbid fascination.

A large part of the rebel infantry moved forwards sluggishly, dragging its heels like a bored child, but eventually the two met in the very centre in a clash of weapons.

Yes! The guardsmen were loosing! What had possessed them to attempt this manoevre, Beatrix had no idea.

But then- she saw it a moment before it came, knew exactly what would happen, could see the dreadful slaughter already- but what could she do? She was completely powerless, as she had been her entire life.

The remaining infantry turned on their heels and ran, ran for their lives back towards the safety of their army.

And to her horror, the rebels took the bait.

With a roar, they ran after the retreating guardsmen, shouting and hollering at the apparent cowardice of these men.

A quick, sharp note on the horns, and the guardsmen instantly fell flat. If only the rebels had the sense to copy them! But it was not to be.

Hidden behind the first few lines of infantry was black death such as not many had ever seen before.

Marksmen. Hundreds and hundreds of them. But these weren’t archers.
The first gunshot rang out through the entire valley, silencing the roars of the men. But still they stood in harm’s way, like bewildered sheep.

In an explosion of noise and gunpowder, the rebel infantry fell, blood spurting from wounds, bullets buried deep within bodies.

Aaron had introduced gunpowder to Disnarta. And had unwittingly unleashed a monster.

The End

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