IS, V5, Chapter 2: Pride Part 5

Anyway, after I finished inside of her and she ate most of my shoulder, we stopped fooling around. It was time for us to discuss our plans for the future. Our war was entering its final phase, and I needed my partner to help me finish things without allowing any more casualties to occur on our side.

“Alright, here’s the plan…”

Amber and I had put on our gear again, and were walking towards the nearest teleportation tree. Also known as Waypoint Willows. She breathed in the mana-rich air and growled “Why plan? Let’s just kill. I’ll burn their cities while you steal their stupid tree.”

I sighed, grumbling “Seriously Amber, it’s not that simple. I don’t want to just murder all the Elves. We need them, or well, Alfirin needs them. Compared to the massive Forest of Lorthon, the actual population is negligible. Once we control the World Trees, Lorthon will be ours in a sense… At least we’ll be able to protect it from foreign invaders to a certain extent. But actually conquering the whole forest will probably take centuries.”

“Fine, then gather the weaklings to help make our territory bigger and stronger.” She turned towards me, wearing that golden dragon-bone helmet, purring “Then we can find a nice cave to raise our cubs in…”

“Oh-ho~, so you want kids, huh? I never really thought you’d have the patience for taking care of ‘cubs, hehe~…” I smiled at her and wrapped my left arm around her waist, trying to bring her into a hug, but her pauldron smacked into my helmet.

Meanwhile, she growled “Cubs are easy to raise. The weak will perish, while the strong will eventually kill us and take our place as rulers of this territory.”

“Umm, okay then. We’ll talk about this later, much much later. For now, we have to conquer Lum.” I sighed again, as we reached the glowing blue tree. Once I placed my palm on it, the two of us were teleported hundreds of miles to the northwest. Deep inside of Lum’s borders, into a huge encampment that I had set up a few days prior. It had huge walls made out of blue roots, while the ‘buildings’ were essentially just hollowed out branches of Hithu or burrows dug in the ground.

The mana consumption for teleportation was extraordinary, but the amount of power generated by Hithu was absurd enough that the tree-stump couldn’t use it all… Unless it was allowed to grow taller. Of course, I wasn’t about to waste such a precious resource on something that could have potentially been devastating to the entire planet. After all, those three stumps alone were already three miles tall. The consequences of allowing some trees to grow hundreds or thousands of miles would be catastrophic on a planet like Terra. Obviously the rotation would be completely broken, which could affect orbits and everything else. It was bad enough that there were space elevators and huge space stations in orbit.

Why am I mentioning all of this? Well, I’m trying to explain that teleportation is extremely inefficient under normal circumstances. Even if it allows a person to travel hundreds or thousands of miles in a few moments, the price is too high to allow millions of people to utilize it frequently. Since we were in a state of war and there was basically no other reasonably transportation system setup, we made do with the Waypoint Willows.

However, we still needed to set up fortresses of our own and encampments if we wanted to conquer the huge cities of Lum. Hundreds of thousands of those tiny mice could fit in a single tree-house if necessary. While the bears, cows and other Beast Tribes needed way more space.

“Alright, this is going to be a pretty complex operation.” I turned to Amber, who was busy marking her territory on a nearby tree. It made me realize that creating underwear for her would’ve been totally unnecessary, since she would probably never use them anyway.

“Do you really have to do that?” I complained, but ultimately ignored her ridiculous behavior. Aside from the crescent moon, glowing pixies and torches, it was fairly dark that night. Yet the city on the hill in the distance was brightly illuminated. Magical spotlights were constantly moving around, shining on our side of the river-like moat that protected them from conventional invasion.

Their stone walls were dozens of meters tall and the watchtowers were even higher. If I had sent out the blue Treants to try and take them down the old fashioned way, it would have resulted in heavy casualties. Of course, there was a much simpler and easier way around that problem.

“Amber, fly over there and kill everyone on those walls… Without completely destroying them, please. Our goal is to capture the city without too much structural damage so-Damn it Amber! Fuck!”

Before I could even finish talking, she pulled the huge bow off her back, grabbed one of the celestial arrows and fired it at the distant city wall. After a few seconds, there was a massive deep violet cloud of fire erupted from the impact point. It was surprisingly dark, considering it was an explosion with enough power to create a hundred meter wide hole in that solid stone barrier. There was a fiery mushroom floating up into the air, as the chunks of molten rock rained down into the moat, and onto the city.

“For fuck’s sake Amber! If you aren’t going to listen to me, then I’ll just do this by myself!” I was angry, not because she haphazardly killed tons of random civilians, but because she purposefully ignored my instructions.

The grumpy tigress roared “Stop yelling at me! Your plan was stupid! My plan is much better!”

I sighed dramatically, watching as Amber kicked off the ground and was engulfed in a massive purple inferno. The flames swirled around her like a drill and funneled the air from all around her, out behind her metallic feet. It was similar to a telekinetic jet engine, made out of magical fire. Although it was impressive, it was still extremely inefficient.

On the other hand, I had a much simpler method of travel. I controlled a single, tiny branch of Hithu and used it to tunnel up through the central square of the walled city. I placed my hand on the tree beside me and instantly appeared ten miles away. Yes, each of the remaining cities in Lum were several dozen miles from one end to the other.

Although their technology was better than Hithu, their housing situation wasn’t much different. Single or double-story homes, everything was moderately spaced out. There were also plantations and vineyards within the walls, to protect them from bandits and beasts. The moment I appeared, I was immediately surrounded by relatively powerful Dryadic ‘templars’ or holy knights. Maybe they would be more similar to paladins? Regardless, their faith was useless without the assistance of their Goddess.

Unlike the main infantry of Lum, their strongest warriors didn’t wear shitty bronze plate mail. Instead, their equipment looked a lot more like black mithril. Similar to carbon steel in appearance, but the mana-absorption effect was way more apparent. If you have eyes like mine, you’d be able to see the mana-vacuum that surrounded the dark knights, with bright-green crystalline eyes.

Unfortunately for them, their gear was worthless compared to mine. I pulled the staff off of my back and immediately began smashing their heads apart, three at a time. They were only a little shorter than I was, but their strength was pretty pathetic. Endurance however, they at least had some talent for taking a beating.

“By the grace of Lum, be healed!”

“Lum’s holy light descends upon you, flash heal!”

“May the Goddess protect you, holy shield!”

That’s when the Priests and Priestesses started showing up. Sorry, they probably had higher ranks than that, but I couldn’t be bothered to find out. Although my magical staff was primarily used to bludgeon things to death, its actual purpose was ultimately to cast spells. For example, sending a stream of condensed mana through that poorly made black mithril armor, then flash-freezing all the water in their dryadic bodies. Their cells burst, thus, regardless of whether they were plants or animals… They still died. Those pathetic healing spells wouldn’t save them from catastrophic cellular annihilation.

Another fun trick is to just shoot out a few lightning bolts. Although the black mithril might protect them from a magical fireball, it wouldn’t stop an actual bolt of lightning. Ultimately, it was still more enjoyable to smash their heads in with my giant metal stick.

As for those beautiful Wood Elven clergy in bright-green robes? Yeah, I didn’t bother trying to reach them physically, since there were hundreds of Dryads and thousands of regular soldiers in my way. A few hundred sharpshooting archers were also trying to kill me, while dozens of mages casted ineffective spells…

Of course, why would I even need to run over there to bash their skulls open? There were so many arrows being ‘gifted’ to me, so I just ‘re-gifted’ them back to those annoying healers. In other words, I used Earth Manipulation to grab the metal arrowheads, stop them and send them flying like the shrapnel from an explosion. Actually, I also caused the bronze armor of some of those heavy infantry to explode as well, dealing with some of those archers they were protecting.

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