Chris: Hmm…Looks like my boast about a constant update time is lagging. Curses. Oh well. I'll just update this as I go along. But I'm so sad. I only have 4 reviews. Oh well. Not like Destiny has more. Speaking of which…I need to update that.

Inferno-Hero: Well, I've never watched Samurai Champloo (I don't have cable. I'm very deprived.). And I might have Raven x Rebecca, but don't be too hopeful.

Disclaimer: Don't own FE. Duh. If I did, Serra would have an OHKO move called, "Annoy To Death."

Note: I accidentally switched Karel's and Karla's troop counts. Karel is the one with the swordsmen and the archers. Karla has the swordswomen.


Chapter 4: Battle at Hero's Ridge, Part 1

The preparations have been completed. Both sides ready themselves for battle, wondering who will be the victor. Plans have been made on both sides, some of which might decide the outcome of this fight. Who will be victorious in this fight? The fighters of Bern, led by Zephiel? Or Eliwood's army, the Freedom Seekers? Only superior tactics and a calm mind will show the truth.

---

Freedom Seeker's Main Camp

Eliwood looked down on the battlefield from his vantage point on the top of Ostia Castle. While the red-haired lord would have preferred to be in the middle of the fight, all of his officers protested, saying that they couldn't risk his death. And after he had woken up from his sleep, he found out he had been locked in. Eliwood got so angry that he bashed down the door using his sword scabbard and faced his officers and fellow commanders outside.

But eventually, he agreed to just watch and not participate. Of course, in the back of his mind, he vowed to be the first one there if it seemed like they were losing. Eliwood looked down on the troops, who were stretching quickly before the real battle began.

He tapped a small device in his ear. "Hector, can you hear me?"

"Hey. I still can't believe these things of Serra's actually work." Hector's voice filtered back, sounding amazed.

"Well, I can't believe that you locked me up in my room."

"And I can't believe that an oaf like Hector came up with that plan!" Serra's voice rang through Eliwood's ear suddenly, causing the lord to wince. "And these aren't 'things' either! They're E-comm's!"

Eliwood heard Hector give a sigh. The blue-haired's lord came back. "What do you mean by 'E-comm's'? What is that supposed to mean?"

"Ear communication! Duh!" Serra's reply came in fast and indignant.

"…I think I'll stick to calling them things." Hector sighed again. "So everyone is hearing us speak right now? Even the scouts?"

"Yep. Keep talking. Pretend we aren't even listening." One of the scout's voice filtered through the 'E-comm'. Eliwood recognized it as Nicklaus, one of his trusted soldiers.

"Great." Hector sighed again. "…We'd better cut the chatter. It's time to fight. I'll see you at the victory bash, okay guys?"

"Got it!" Serra's cheered and Eliwood heard her voice disappear.

"See you around, Hector." Eliwood tapped once on the E-comm and sighed. He was still unused to this sort of stuff. Serra had given one to all of the officers and commanders, not counting those on the other side that were going to defect. She said that one tap would activate it or turn it off. When it was on, you'd hear what anyone else with an E-comm was saying, as long as they had theirs on as well.

And to Eliwood's protest that the enemy might have such a device, Serra reassured him that the E-comm's were magically geared to receive and transmit signals for people in his army. Of course, sometimes all the talk got confusing, so Serra had said that if you double tap the device and said the name of the person you'd want to speak to, it'd focus just on that person so you could talk without any other interruptions. An interesting gadget, to be sure, but Eliwood was still unsure of its ability to function well.

He tapped it twice and said, "Nicklaus."

The scout's voice filtered into Eliwood's ear, just as if he was standing next to him. "Okay, baby. Just a little longer in the air and we can take a niiiice break."

"Talking to your wyvern?" Eliwood said wryly.

"Huh? Oh, Eliwood! Uh…Yeah! Wyverns are people too, you know."

"I know, I know." The red-haired lord laughed softly. "How does it look? Has Zephiel announced his attack yet?"

"Not yet…Wait…He's blown the bugle! His flags are up! It's time to fight! I'll get back to you! I'll be near the south side, okay? Where Marcus and Oswin are."

Eliwood heard a tap and Nicklaus' voice disappeared. Eliwood sighed and paced along the walls of the castle. He hated waiting. He wanted to go down there and fight! A leader's role isn't supposed to be on a throne while watching his people die in front of him! Eliwood came to a decision. The battle hasn't even started in full force yet, but he couldn't stand around anymore.

Eliwood whirled around and drew his sword. Focusing his power, he slashed rapidly at the wooden door that held him confined to the upper levels of the castle. When he was finished, the door was mangled, hanging unevenly on its hinges and Eliwood was already rushed downstairs, ready to join the fight.

---


Sulcry Encampment

"Zephiel has called for battle, men! Now, yesterday, I told you of my decision, correct?" Raven looked down at his troops, his sword held aloft. The troops roared affirmation. "If you wish to join me in my personal fight as we join Eliwood, I thank you! And if you wish to return to Zephiel's side, then I hold no grudge against you! Now, choose wisely men!" He lowered his sword and watched as his troops stood their ground. Except for small contingent of a thousand men, all glowering at him.

"Have you forgotten what Prince Zephiel has done for you?" One man, apparently the leader of this small group, shouted and pointed at Raven.

"Pointing is impolite." Raven said with a deadpan look on his face.

The leader of the rebels stared at Raven for a while, dumbfounded. But he regained his composure. "Didn't Zephiel find out who imprisoned your friends and destroyed your family's name? Didn't you vow to serve him until you got your revenge?"

"Well…Maybe I did…"

"Zephiel said that Ostia destroyed your family's castle at Cornwall, right?" The leader wore a smile now.

"Yes…"

"Well, Hector Gewan of Ostia fights with Eliwood! Are you going to side with the enemy?" The leader laughed, looking triumphant.

Raven's eyes took on a shadowed look. "What is your name?"

"Mine? It's Jefferson!"

"Your full name, please."

Jefferson looked around, growing slightly uneasy. "Jefferson Crath. Why do you need to know?"

Raven's head came up and one could almost envision flames in his eyes. "I'd like to know the name of the man I'm about to kill. My decision stands. Go before I tell my loyal troops to cut you down where you stand. The only person who tells me what to do is myself and my sister."

"…" Jefferson motioned to his allies and they departed, swearing vengeance.

"Sir! Are you sure it's wise to let them leave? We could wipe them out right now!" One of the soldiers spoke up.

Raven gripped his sword tightly, his knuckles turning white. "No…Let them imagine their freedom. That way, it will so much more enjoyable to get my revenge." He looked to the west, where he distantly saw Priscilla subtly change her allegiance, switching her army colors to one that mimicked Eliwood's. Raven gave a nod.

"It's time to fight! Standard bearers, you know what to do! Everyone else, I want Darin hit hard and swiftly! Let's move!" He roared angrily and his army headed for Darin, who was completely taken off guard by Raven's swift attack.

---

Fareth Encampment

"Dammit! Raven and Priscilla dare to go against me, huh? Very well…" Zephiel ran his hand over a rune on his hand. "Dorcas, destroy Priscilla now! She has mainly healers! Priscilla will die for her treachery!"

An answering voice came back. "Of course, Lord Zephiel."

"Good!" Zephiel closed the magical connection and turned to his second-in-commands, Lloyd and Linus. "Looks like Eliwood managed to twist the tables. All of us are going to kill Raven. NOW!" He gripped his lance angrily and rushed off towards his troops, rallying them for battle. Lloyd and Linus exchanged looks before joining their lord in the fight.

­---


Elkath Encampment

"Dorcas! Our lord has signaled for the attack!" A soldier ran up to Dorcas, looking excited.

"I know. Zephiel has just contacted me." Dorcas scratched his chin calmly, watching the sky.

"Then why aren't we fighting?" The soldier pointed at the middle of Hero's Ridge, where sounds of fighting have already reached them.

"You are too eager. I just wish to see where the wind blows before we fight." Dorcas gave a sigh and stretched languidly. "Return to your post. I will tell you when we are to fight."

"Yessir!" The soldier saluted and ran back to his place in the ranks, no doubt to tell his comrades what their commander had said. They were a smart bunch. They'd be able to figure it out before long.

---

Hero's Ridge

Hector grunted as he lashed out with his axe, slaughtering the enemy soldier that stood before him. He looked around, gasping for breath. It just had to be his luck that he would go up against Ursula Caruth and Brendan Reed without any reinforcements. Well, it was partially his fault. He had walked straight into an ambush set by Brendan and directly after that, Ursula had charged straight into him.

The blue haired lord grumbled as he swung his axe in a full three-sixty arc, killing the five soldiers that were charging at him. Hector panted again and looked at his struggling troops. He never had any luck against magic users, since he picked the strongest in muscle for his soldiers, not the strongest in brains.

Hector jumped as he heard a rough voice grate in his ear. "Who is it?"

"It's Karel." The swordmaster's cackling voice entered Hector's ear and the lord shivered slightly. Karel creeped him out, what with all the talk about killing people.

"Why'd you contact me? I'm kind of busy now." Hector threw his axe at a soldier, killing the soldier and knocking the soldier back into a couple of his comrades.

"I've come as reinforcements along with my sister, Karla."

Hector grinned mentally. "Great! I could really use the help!"

"I know…" Karel's voice faded out and Hector fought on with renewed confidence. The lord grabbed his axe from the soldier when an arrow came from his back and lodged into one of his arms. He hissed angrily and spun around.

"Wait! There aren't any archers behind us…" Hector looked up to see a shower of arrows flying towards him. It was only his battle-honed reflexes and his thick armor that saved the lord. He jumped backwards, avoiding the first wave and rolled to dodge the second. Hector panted while lying on the ground, seeing that there were no more arrows coming. The lord grimaced in his mind. A sneak attack. He was tired, covered in blood, some of it his own, and now he had to face off with another opponent. He heard a battle cry and looked up, immediately bringing his axe up to deflect the sword blade that was aimed for his head.

Hector spat in his foe's face. "Karel, you bastard."

Karel only gave a smile before retreating slightly, a smile on his face. He stared at Hector, swinging his sword only once to slay one of Hector's soldiers.

Hector panted. "What are you waiting for?"

"Get up. I want to face someone who's standing, not someone who's lying on the ground." Karel's grin grew wider.

"Very well." Hector pushed himself up and readied himself for Karel's attack. "Let's dance."

"My pleasure!" Karel dashed at Hector, swinging his sword for Hector's neck, confident of victory.

Just a moment of time. A quick slash. A pause.

"Karla….What are you doing?" Karel strained against his sister's sword blade.

"Fighting for what I want!" Karla pushed harder, driving her brother back. "I'm sorry, brother, but my beliefs go before clan loyalty!" She spared a quick look at Hector. "I've called in Lyn over here. She should be helping us out soon!"

"Thanks Karla. I won't forget this!" Hector saw a mage nearby and silenced the magic user with a quick shot of his throwing axe. Karla nodded before clashing her sword against her brother's again. Hector returned to the fight, feeling cheered.

---

"You fight well!" Oswin yelled over his shoulder to his fellow commander, Marcus.

"Thanks! You don't do too bad for yourself!" Marcus returned the compliment, thrusting his lance into an armor knight that decided to get too close.

"But it's the way we've trained our men that really decides the battle! Not a couple of old fogies, right?" Oswin let out a laugh as he swung out haphazardly with his shield, ramming a soldier backwards.

"Right! Let us see who the best teacher is!" Marcus looked to his bugler, who nodded, signaling a charge. "Cavalry! Charge!" Marcus set his lance under his right shoulder and led the troops he kept in reserve forward, charging straight into the armor knights of Lundgren Umatsu. Along the way, Marcus' other cavalry echoed his cry and charged forward, stabbing and slashing with their weapons, piercing the thick armor of Lundgren's troops.

"He's good." Oswin nodded approvingly and looked to his own bugler, who caught what his commander was intending. "Armor Knights! Earthquake!" Oswin slung his shield off of his back and threw the heavy piece of metal on the ground, giving off a slight tremor in the ground. His soldier grasped their spears and threw them at the enemy, giving the illusion of an earthquake causing the spears to shoot from the ground. Not very elegant, but it was useful in the fact that the spears were quickly followed by the knight's shields, which hammered the spears in even more, slaying thousands of Lundgren's troops.

Marcus and Oswin met each other in the middle of the carnage, grasping each other's gauntleted fists.

"Very good! I believe you win our contest for today!" Marcus let out a laugh. "I will just have to beat you next time!"

"I'd like to see you try!" Oswin returned the challenge, smiling broadly. Both of their attacks had completely demolished Lundgren's army, causing the enemy officer to retreat with only his life intact. With the defeat of one of their foes, the odds looked a little better, maybe even good enough to win.

---

Battle Statistics

( ) means the person has been defeated.

Skimishes

Hector Gewan & Karla Trueshot vs. Ursula Caruth, Karel Trueshot, and Brendan Reed

Oswin Jennings & Marcus Sandlin vs. (Lundgren Umatsu)

Casualties

Lord Califex's Army:

Hector Gewan - 6000 to 2243
Karla Trueshot - 2000 to 1575
Oswin Jennings - 5000 to 3968
Marcus Sandlin - 3500 to 2190

Total Casualty Report - 6524 Men

Lord Fareth's Army:

Ursula Caruth - 6500 to 5839
Brendan Reed - 3500 to 3182
Karel Trueshot - 2000 to 1174
Lundgren Umatsu - 4000 to 124

Total Casualty Report - 5681 Men


Chris: Well, there it is. The Battle of Hero's Ridge will probably be in two to three parts. I'm not sure. Well, review if you read it. And enjoy!