Chapter 227: The Great Forest (2)
In the Great Forest, monsters possessed by evil spirits raised their heads.
Terrible screams enveloped the entire forest, and the plants had also strangely transformed after being possessed by evil spirits.
The worst part was that their bodies were severely twisted due to being contaminated with the aura of the void.
This meant that they were not simply possessed by evil spirits.
“Tell the troops to keep their distance.”
Iron gave such an order to the commanders while conducting aerial bombings and long-range artillery attacks.
The goal was to gradually reduce the territory of the Great Forest.
“Just bomb it! Drake Knights, don’t get close to the forest!”
“The Drake Knights are solely responsible for escorting the airships!”
“Don’t get close to the forest!”
The Drake Knights dealt with airborne monsters that occasionally swarmed in, floating high in the air for the protection of the airships.
The airships themselves dropped bombs equipped with flame magic from the air.
“All shells should be incendiary!”
“Only fire incendiary shells!”
“Focus on burning down the forest!”
The artillery units responsible for the bombardment also started firing from the furthest distances away from the forest.
The Southern Army also burned down the Great Forest little by little through the artillery units deployed at the front.
The Eastern Army, floating on the sea, also burned the Great Forest with incendiary shells.
The entire Great Forest, the largest forest on the continent, seemed contaminated, as polluted air from the burning woods near the sea continuously gushed out.
“Going in there would have been terrible.”
The Eastern Commander muttered while looking at the mutated entities.
It would have been difficult for even a sorcerer to handle the contaminated power, let alone the troops below.
If they had fought in such an unfamiliar environment as the forest, defeat would have been certain.
“Ah… Perhaps it’s fortunate it’s a forest?”
The Eastern Commander murmured, looking at the burning forest.
The operation to reduce the enemies’ territory by burning down the Great Forest with artillery and flame magic was relatively smooth.
After burning various parts of the forest over several days, the giant forest naturally began to burn down.
However, erasing such a massive forest from the continent was not an easy task.
The bodies enhanced by the void’s aura did not easily burn, and even plants that had gained will by being possessed by evil spirits moved themselves inward to escape the flames.
“What about the Southern Army?”
“We are pushing the front line forward.”
Iron commanded the situation from the flagship, observing the overall view of the Great Forest.
Despite the resolve to burn down the entire forest and the bombardment and burning, the forest did not burn as quickly as expected, causing Iron’s brow to furrow.
Recently, they had reached a limit.
It seemed that the point where further fire attacks were difficult had been reached, as the fire advancing into the forest had almost stopped making progress recently.
“Is this as far as we go?”
Iron bit his lip while looking at the place shrouded in black mist.
The fire that had burned its way into the center of the forest was blocked by the black mist and could not advance any further.
Even the places where Iron had expanded the sanctuary were pushed back by the black mist, advancing only a little, but even that had its limits.
The strategy to reduce the territory of the Great Forest through fire attacks seemed to have reached its limit.
Iron turned to the officer who called out suddenly and looked at the image sphere he was pointing at.
When the image sphere installed on the flagship was zoomed in, entities that appeared to be spirits were seen looking up at the sky.
The entities that had not been consumed by evil spirits merely looked at the humans, and the airships also did not attack, just observing.
Seeing this, Iron immediately made a decision.
“We need to go down.”
At Iron’s words, Karl quickly mobilized the elementalists.
Riding on a divine beast, Iron descended, and the wounded spirits cried out weakly upon seeing him.
Originally, they were the lowest ranking spirits formed from the natural energy, but to survive, they had possessed animals.
To instinctively avoid the corrupted aura, they had possessed animals and hidden deep within the Great Forest. After the evil spirits retreated, they began to reveal themselves one by one.
Although they possessed spiritual energy, they were not as strong as divine beasts, so even though they hid deep within, being exposed to the corrupted aura caused them to sustain severe injuries.
Suddenly, a Baepsae appeared and healed the wounded spirits, and other divine beasts also appeared, emitting their divine energy to replenish the spirits’ strength.
Then, the elementalists summoned spirits to fill the surroundings with the energy of nature.
Perhaps thanks to their efforts?
Many spirits regained some of their strength and life returned to their eyes.
-Tweet! Tweet tweet!
A cute rabbit hopped up to Iron and said something.
Remarkably, Iron could understand what it was trying to say.
Starting with the rabbit’s voice, which stuck in his ears, the cries of other spirits were also heard.
“So… you all want to fight alongside us?”
Many spirits nodded in understanding at Iron’s words.
They wanted revenge on the beings that had corrupted the forest.
They wanted to drive out those who had caused them pain and lived peacefully, from the Great Forest.
In return, they asked for help so that the burned area of the Great Forest could be restored.
They also asked to rescue other spirits hiding in the forest.
Iron quietly observed them in response to their request.
The spirits were not divine beasts.
Only the lowest-ranking spirits, close to nature, could possess animals, so their power was mostly weak.
Though living as spirits for a long time could potentially make them divine beasts, the power of those who had not achieved that was not great.
They were not a significant force.
However, looking into their eyes, Iron nodded lightly.
Having them was better than nothing.
Moreover, there were numerous spirits in the Great Forest.
If all of them were rescued, even the weakest spirits could be of help, he judged.
Since the corrupted forest had to be eradicated anyway, if they could put in a bit more effort to rescue the spirits, they would become a valuable force to fight alongside them.
As Iron made his decision, the rabbit was the first to hop towards a nearby elementalist.
An elementalist dumbfoundedly caught the rabbit, and suddenly light began to radiate from his body.
And the same was true for other spirits and elementalists.
Each spirit approached elementalists they liked and made contact with them one by one.
Iron murmured absentmindedly.
But curiously, among the numerous spirits, none sought to make a contract with Iron.
As Iron wondered why, the Baepsae perched on his head raised its head proudly as if it were obvious.
With its small wings crossed and its head nodding, a miniaturized owl, phoenix, and thunderbird also nodded their heads.
They seemed to think that no spirit would dare attempt a contract in their presence.
Iron then chuckled.
“Right. You all are indeed something!”
After a hearty laugh, Iron issued a new order.
“Operation ‘Spirit Rescue’, begin.”
The commanders responded in unison to Iron’s command and moved out to various locations.
The news was also shared with the Southern and Eastern Armies, asking for their assistance.
The other armies readily agreed.
Not only the soldiers but also the officers showed interest with shining eyes.
The reason was simple: they wanted to try making a contract with a spirit.
Initially interested only in elementalists, the spirits soon attempted to make contracts with other humans as well.
Since there were far more spirits than elementalists, not all could make contracts.
Presumably out of pride, no spirit immediately sought another contract, and eventually, they attempted one-on-one contracts with other humans.
As a result, many from the Mobile Field Army ended up contracting with spirits, and this news quickly spread to everyone in the South.
Naturally, it reached the ears of otherworlders and adventurers as well.
They too began to make contracts with spirits one by one, and afterward, interest in the South spread throughout the empire.
The reason was clear.
[You have formed a contract with a spirit. As a special bonus, you’ve acquired the ‘Grow Together with Comrades’ skill.]
“I did it! I did it too!”
An otherworlder exclaimed as he looked at a giant bear.
He wore a satisfied expression as he watched the spirit, becoming translucent and turning into a spirit upon the contract.
Moreover, he developed spirit affinity, which he did not possess before.
This news struck the empire like lightning, drawing countless people to the South.
“Following Commander Iron always brings opportunities, doesn’t it?”
“I missed out on the Northern and Southern Confederation, but I can’t miss this.”
Otherworlders and adventurers cheered, draping their arms around each other’s shoulders.
As interest surged, the hastily constructed fortress in front of the Great Forest expanded even more.
As people flocked, numerous merchants risked danger to come, and the entire southern region of the continent became more vibrant.
With the addition of the Central Army bringing government support supplies, the area near the contaminated Great Forest buzzed with numerous people.
They were mercenaries and adventurers who came to form contracts with spirits or obtain new quests, and merchants who came to trade with them.
This influx of people also changed the military operations in the South.
With so many mercenaries and adventurers gathering, the military no longer needed to maintain all front lines in the Great Forest area.
Low-intensity danger area – Mercenaries & Adventurers
High-intensity danger area – Central Army
Front line – Southern Army
Exploration inside the dark mist area – Mobile Field Army.
Great Forest coastline and Titica River basin – Eastern Army
With these operational areas established, preparations to tackle the Great Forest officially began.
Iron aimed to capture part of the dark mist area with his sanctuary, followed by the Southern and Central Armies expanding the purified areas.
It was speculated that it would be possible to safely capture up to the dark mist area without significant harm if everything proceeded as planned.
However, that was just the wish of humans.
[The first story of the Apocalypse has begun. Prevent the hellification of the Great Forest!]
-The completion of the Phantom Tree is approaching. When the Phantom Tree is completed, it will be possible to fully summon demons from hell! You must prevent the completion of the Phantom Tree!
– Victory: Prevent the hellification of the Great Forest
– Defeat: The second story of the Apocalypse begins in two places. (1. Northeast 2. Great Forest)
[Completion – 90%]
The voice heard by everyone, including Iron.
Hearing it, everyone’s expressions hardened.
The giant tree, resembling the World Tree, was actually the Phantom Tree, summoning phantoms from hell.
“Ah… Right. It was too easy to be true.”
Iron said, issuing commands to the entire army.
“From now on, we will officially tackle the dark mist area. Everyone, be fully prepared.”
At Iron’s words, everyone swallowed nervously with tense expressions.
Unlike other armies, the Mobile Field Army hadn’t just been safely tackling the area.
Following Iron’s orders, they ‘trained’ by familiarizing their forces with the monsters and the characteristics of the evil spirits in the dark mist area.
“Are we finally moving?”
“Yes. We’ll make a direct assault on the Phantom Tree.”
Iron said, clenching his fist at the Godly Sword family head’s words.
With no Grand Masters on the continent, there was no way to stop the descent of a corrupted god or demon.
Therefore, it was imperative to deal with the Phantom Tree before its completion.
They had to be prepared to accept the consequences.
“Let’s also mobilize our family.”
Terrion said and then disappeared.
Soon after, the Mobile Field Army completed preparations for a direct assault on the Phantom Tree, waiting for Iron’s command.
The Southern and Central Armies also hurriedly prepared.
The Eastern Army also prepared to enter near the Phantom Tree along the river.
“The assault begins.”
With Iron’s order, the Mobile Field Army moved to officially tackle the dark mist area.
TL: Hi everyone, this is Pai_. You might have seen my name in the “Hopeless Possession” novel, which I am also translating. To be frank, I did not initially want to pick up this novel since it already has many translated chapters. However, at the special request of the group owner, I have decided to translate it. I haven’t read the chapters from 1-226, and I don’t plan to, as I don’t have that much time. Therefore, as a condition, I need someone to either create a wiki for this novel or give me detailed information, such as the story, details about the main character, family members, etc., so that I can translate these chapters without any issues. You can contact me on the Woopread Discord with the same username, i.e., Pai_.
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