Chapter 1909 Damning Decree
The Bright Warriors and the Quint of the First and Second Spaceborn Mech Companies of the Avatars slowly tilted the space battle in its favor.
Even though the Avatars, Battle Criers and Sentinels were losing a lot of mechs and a fair number of mech pilots, the defenders denied the CRC from taking orbital supremacy over Kesseling VIII.
This was extremely crucial for various reasons! Control over the space above the planet not only prevented the Fridaymen from blocking the ascent of the starships that belonged to Ves, but also stopped them from flinging artificial meteorites and all sorts of ordnance down to the surface.
Though the battle in space went well for the defenders, the battle on land was not as smooth!
As Krent's idyllic peace was shattered by the lasers and projectiles exchanged between the two sides, the heavily-outnumbered defenders tried desperately to stop the attackers from advancing to the underground facility where the surgery still proceeded!
With Ves out the picture, it was up to the remaining leaders of his organizations to hold the line and keep up morale!
The number disparity on land was much greater than in space. The CRC prepared much more assets for their land attack because their only goal was to take care of Ves!
Once this crucial leader and mech designer died or fell into its hands, the rest of his enterprise became irrelevant!
For this reason, more than a thousand mercenary mechs and a hefty amount of second-class mechs assaulted the defenders like a flood crashing against a dyke.
Among the defenders, the Glory Battalion served as the bulwark. Yet even the Glory Warriors found themselves outnumbered by the opposing Fridaymen mechs!
During the furious battle, Venerable Brutus fired his rifles continuously at the approaching waves of second-class mechs. Even though his Star Dancer was wielding two rifles at the same time, his aim remained inhumanly impeccable as ever!
Gauss rounds smashed through weak points with ease! Most of the time, the stricken mechs immediately lost a lot of functionality, opening themselves up to easy follow-up blows from the other Glory Warriors!
His dual-type energy rifle was even deadlier. Supplied with an abundant amount of power from the Star Dancer's powerful reactor, Brutus did not hesitate to switch his rifle to particle beam mode.
Rays after rays of bright blue beams tore through the enemy mechs like unstoppable needles!
Sometimes, the particle rays even tore through half-a-dozen mechs at the same time as the lesser mechs operated the mercenaries hardly possessed the capacity to resist the extremely destructive antiprotons that made up the thin beams!
Though the firepower exhibited by the Star Dancer single-handedly stalled the advance of the CRC mechs despite their overwhelming numbers, Brutus was far from relaxed.
The main reason why his Star Dancer swayed the battle on the surface so much was that it was designed to deliver as much peak performance as its frame could allow.
It fared much less in an extended engagement and battles of attrition! The Star Dancer only carried so many magazines for its powerful gauss rifle. Its energy reserves, while prodigiously huge compared to regular second-class mechs, were being rapidly consumed in order to fuel the dual-type energy rifle's hungry appetite!
Therefore, it was crucial for Brutus to make the most of his firepower. He needed to take out as many CRC mechs as possible to decrease the losses suffered by the defenders and give them a chance to turn the tide of the battle!
Just as Brutus figured that the trend of the battle was slowly moving in his favor, his mech signalled an acute threat was approaching from his flank!
With a series of thoughts, the Star Dancer glided out of the way of a barrage of powerful pulses of energy!
A very distinctive CRC light mech emerged out of the crowd of attackers and flew in the air in order to close in on the retreating expert mech of the Glory Battalion.
No mech would ever close in on an enemy expert mech unless it had the strength to stand a chance!
The reason why Brutus took this single adversary far more seriously than the other mechs of the CRC was because his sensors alerted him to a crucial fact.
The light mech that was closing in on his own mech was an expert mech!
Brutus Wodin! The light mech's speakers broadcasted a female voice in the open! You'll have to get past me if you want to bully my younger brothers and sisters!
Your strength is wasted on the weak and divided Coalition, you delusional apostate! Brutus shouted back as his Star Dancer returned its gauss rifle to its back.
Don't call me apostate, you bootlicking boy! I am Venerable Raen Valentine! Remember my name because I'll be the only woman who will be owning you in this battle!
The light mech Brutus faced was a marauder type. Though it was a little heavier and bulkier than light skirmishers, it possessed a versatile offensive profile.
By default, marauder mechs wielded both one-handed swords and submachine guns, sometimes at the same time. Optimized for harassment and opportunistic close-ranged flanking attacks, a marauder mech pilot had to be well-versed in multiple difficult skills in order to make the most out of this risky mech type.
So far, the Star Dancer's mobility staved off an interception, but Valentine's Screaming Blade was narrowing the distance with each second that passed!
My saber screams for your blood! Stop running so you can obediently offer your eunuch body to my blade!
Brutus scowled. Of all the opponents he faced, he hated fighting against women the most!
Every woman from the Friday Coalition he encountered on and off the battlefield were tragic figures. Raised in the ignorance and lies of their state, they each fought against the truth espoused by the Hexers.
It hurt Brutus that he was unable to persuade his foes into acknowledging that women deserved to rule over men rather than settle for the false notion of equality.
Each time he tried, the female Fridaymen rebuffed him in the strongest terms. There was no saving these deluded women!
He ignored Venerable Valentine's taunts and instead attempted to rebuff her Screaming Blade by pelting her mech with precise bursts of particle beams!
He switched his rifle from a persistent beam mode into short, pulsed activations.
He did so in order to ration his Star Dancer's energy expenditure. Longer beams might make it easier for him to inflict at least some damage onto the Screaming Blade, but his target's superior mobility would ensure that most of its power went to waste!
While over eighty percent the pulsed beams went wide, this was still a win in his book as the marauder mech exhibited an extraordinary degree of evasion.
While Brutus was skilled enough to ensure he landed his shots at least 99 percent of the time against regular opponents, Venerable Valentine excelled in dueling against ranged expert mechs.
She slowly adjusted to his firing patterns, causing her Screaming Blade to suffer less and less damage!
Taste my blade!
The Screaming Blade spurt out a burst of speed, boosting it forward while being surrounded by the characteristic glow of true resonance!
Brutus, though under acute danger, did not flinch from this expected occurrence. Instead, he smoothly danced his expert mech out of the way of a glowing red saber that would cut off one of the Star Dancer's crucial arms!
Though he managed to evade the first significant attack, he was still in trouble! Ranged mechs like his Star Dancer never held the upper hand against swift and agile mechs.
Whether he could fend off the Screaming Blade therefore depended hugely on whether he had the skill, experience and resonance strength to overcome this considerable disadvantage!
You are not the only one who can resonate with your mech. Brutus grunted with a scowl. Let me show you my dance!
The Star Dancer began to glow as the resonating materials built into its frame began to react to his force of will.
The mech started to shimmer in various rainbow colors while exhibited several unpredictable staccato evasive movements!
While the Screaming Blade had turned around to land another lethal blow, the Star Dancer impossibly moved out of the way at the last second!
Though the Screaming Blade's saber could have nicked the Star Dancer with its resonating weapon, the ranged mech managed to remain unscathed!
Urgh! Venerable Valentine grunted in irritation. You're a fool if you think that trick will save your mech from getting butchered. I like peeling the shells of tricky mechs like yours the most!
While the two expert mechs danced against each other in the air, on the ground the larger engagement still continued without any interruption.
The absence of Brutus Wodin instantly doubled or tripled the pressure directed against the defenders. The Glory Battalion faced the brunt of this adverse development as the CRC mechs were no longer suppressed.
The Fridaymen mech pilots could finally put their advantage in numbers to good use!
Their mechs assaulted the Glory Battalition without any further ado.
Both sides fielded different mechs and employed different fighting methods. However, the quality of their mechs and the training of their mech pilots were roughly on the same level.
The CRC mech pilots exhibited a bit more discipline and coordination while the Glory Warriors were significantly more spirited.
Not only had the Wodin Dynasty trained the Glory Warriors to be absolutely obedient and devoted, they also received another mental boost in the form of many of the glows exhibited by the nearby LMC mechs!
The Blackbeaks, Crystal Lords and occasional Desolate Soldiers all turned the crowded and chaotic battlefield into a heroic stand to the mech pilots on their side.
Even the handful of Deliverers piloted by the newly-recruited Ylvainans added a touch of righteousness and fanaticism to the moods of the Glory Warriors!
That wasn't all! While all of the glows blended together to produce a dynamic aura that lifted the spirits of the defenders, the attackers weren't left off either!
Regardless if the glows affected a foreign third-class mercenary pilot or a well-trained second-class mech pilot, they both received the same degree of mental suppression!
The mercenary mech pilots exhibited a lot more hesitation in their attacks after becoming affecting by the targeted hostility from the glows. It was if the mechs they faced all couldn't wait to end their lives!
The Fridaymen mech pilots, whether they belonged to the CRC or one of the mercenary corps it contracted on a long-term basis, exhibited a considerably greater degree of mental resilience.
By relying on the strength of their superior training, the direct opponents of the Glory Battalion only displayed some suppression despite the effects piling onto their mentalities!
Even so, the impact of the glows shouldn't be discounted. Without them, the defenders would have already lost a lot of morale while their attackers would have kept their spirits long enough to breach the defensive lines!
As it was, slowing the offensive gave the defenders an opportunity to reverse the battle trend.
The arrival of the Living Prophet, Taon Melin and their band of defecting Kronons made a considerable difference.
Forced to defend their mob from multiple sides, the attacking mercenaries were forced to defend their rear.
What was worse was that the sacred glows radiating from the prototype and production copy of the Transcendent Messenger design became increasingly more obnoxious!
Ylvaine himself seemed to descend onto the battlefield as the prototype piloted by 'James' began to radiate the purest faith and certainty that an Ylvainan mech had ever showed!
LET MY WILL BE HEARD! The young Living Prophet broadcasted in the open. The Curin Dynasty, Kronos Dynasty and Poxco Dynasty has forsaken the tenets of my faith! By choosing to ally themselves with the Friday Coalition instead of abiding by their beliefs, I decree that they shall be stripped of my blessings! From this moment onwards, the fallen Protectorate will never enjoy my grace again!
The moment the Living Prophet made his decree, something remarkable occurred throughout the territories of the Protectorate.
Every single Holy Soldier, Deliverer and Transcendent Messenger aside from the ones piloted by the defectors lost their glows!
Almost every Ylvainan mech pilot, mech technician and other people panicked as they discovered that the Great Prophet had disappeared from their mechs!
Due to the state-wide communications blackout, nobody knew what was taking place in the Kesseling System, but the sudden withdrawal of all of those glows couldn't be hidden at all!
Mass panic erupted throughout the entire Protectorate as the Ylvainan people collectively became hysterical!