Chapter 16:

Chapter Fourteen: The Road to Ezorn (Part II)/Battle of Ezorn

Beyond the Borders Volume 1

*When will this war be over*, Aryia thought as she stood against the
stone wall of the small gun emplacement. Lylianna stood at the open
doorway, staring out at the river’s horizon. The sound of soldiers
marching and vehicles driving over the bridge could be heard.Bookmark here

The City of Ezorn was only about a thousand kilometers away. However,
everyone knew that taking Ezorn would not be easy.Bookmark here

“So, what will happen once we capture Ezorn?” Aryia asked.Bookmark here

No one said a word. A few minutes of silence passed until Lylianna
finally spoke.Bookmark here

“The most likely scenario is that the war will be over.”Bookmark here

Jeeps and other cargo trucks continued to drive past as Aryia tried to
picture what she would do when the war was over. Lylianna turned to the
others, there was something on her mind.Bookmark here

“Does it feel odd to anyone else just how easy it was to take all of
this territory from the Versyians?”Bookmark here

“Maybe you’re just being paranoid Lylianna.”Bookmark here

The others looked at Aryia with surprised faces.Bookmark here

“Aryia, did you just call the Major by her first name?” Ryliah asked.Bookmark here

“Y‑Yeah… so what if I did?”Bookmark here

“Yare yare, are you two dating by any chance?” Melissa said in a teasing
tone.Bookmark here

“N‑No! Why would you think that?” Aryia questioned as she turned away,
blushing heavily.Bookmark here

Lylianna remained silent but turned away slightly blushing as well.Bookmark here

“I bet you two have kissed,” Melissa said as she looked over to
Lylianna.Bookmark here

Neither Lylianna nor Aryia spoke. It was clear to Melissa now that the
two of them did.Bookmark here

“Oh, so the two of you have,” Melissa said giggling.Bookmark here

“All right, that is enough. Keep it up and no more rations for anyone,”
Lylianna said.Bookmark here

The others just smiled.Bookmark here

“Now lets get down to business.”Bookmark here

Lylianna placed down a large map in the center of the room. She then
placed down a photo over where Ezorn was marked on the map.Bookmark here

“So, what are looking at Major?” Ryliah asked.Bookmark here

“The City of Ezorn.”Bookmark here

The picture was nothing more then a gray‑toned picture that appeared out
of focus. It was so out of focus that it was impossible to see anything
but the outer trees and landscape surrounding the blurry image in the
center.Bookmark here

“How big is the city?” Aryia asked.Bookmark here

“Unknown, but it quite large. Possibly as big as the capital if I had to
guess.”Bookmark here

“How many guards are there?” Melissa asked.Bookmark here

“Unknown.”Bookmark here

“Then what do we know?” Deadeye asked.Bookmark here

“We know that we know nothing.”Bookmark here

Everyone appeared shocked.Bookmark here

“How is that possible? We have aerial photography and other means of
collecting data. How is it we can’t get anything on the city?” Aryia
asked.Bookmark here

“Well, there have been rumors that the Versyian Republic was working on
defensive measures, however, as to what these counter measures are, I
have no idea.”Bookmark here

“So what do we do then?”Bookmark here

“Our best bet is to head North and flank from there,” Lylianna said as
she stared into Aryia’s eyes.Bookmark here

“Is there a reason why you are staring at me?”Bookmark here

“Isn’t it obvious? The Major wants to bone you Aryia.”Bookmark here

Silence…Bookmark here

“Mel, I am cutting your rations for a month.”Bookmark here

“Worth it!”Bookmark here

“Anyways, I was wondering if you had anymore crazy ideas in your head
Aryia.”Bookmark here

“We could always dress up as wounded Versyian soldiers and hope we get
discharged for service. Then we could move around the city freely.”Bookmark here

The room was quiet for a bit.Bookmark here

“Aryia…”Bookmark here

“Y‑Yes?”Bookmark here

“…that is a stupid idea.”Bookmark here

Aryia had a sad look upon her face.Bookmark here

“Right, so we flank from the North and scout out the city to the best of
our abilities. We head out in two days. Gear up and be ready to move.”Bookmark here

“Yes ma’am!”Bookmark here

\* \* \*Bookmark here

Many thoughts ran through Aryia’s mind as she readied her gear for the
mission ahead of them. *Once we take the city it will be over*, Aryia
thought.Bookmark here

コン・コン〜^[7](../Text/Endnotes.xhtml#Endnote07){#Return07}^Bookmark here

Before Aryia could finish packing up the rest of her gear there was a
knock at the door. Standing in the doorway was Lylianna who appeared as
if she was done packing up her gear.Bookmark here

“Lylianna…”Bookmark here

“Make sure you have everything.”Bookmark here

“Right.”Bookmark here

Aryia continued to pack as Lylianna walked over to her.Bookmark here

“Try not to think about anything but the mission for now. Okay?”Bookmark here

Aryia nodded.Bookmark here

“No need to worry.”Bookmark here

With a kiss on the cheek Lylianna left Aryia stunned for a few seconds.
Before Aryia could say anything Lylianna had already left. Aryia looked
back at her bag and checked over everything again.Bookmark here

Hours passed as Aryia continued to check and double check that she had
everything she needed for the mission.Bookmark here

\* \* \*Bookmark here

After two days had passed Aryia found herself heading North with the
other Knights. Everyone had their weapons at the ready. Lylianna felt
uneasy with how quiet the morning air was while Aryia continued to watch
the rear. Once the tree line was in sight Lylianna ordered everyone to
hold their position.Bookmark here

“Major?” Melissa seemed confused as to why they had stopped.Bookmark here

Lylianna stared off at the woodlands ahead. *We’re sitting ducks out
here*, Lylianna thought as she looked around.Bookmark here

“Deadeye quick—”Bookmark here

Before Lylianna could finish her sentence shots rang out from beyond the
tree line. Everyone hit the dirt as Deadeye scrambled to form a wall
around them. Bullets continued to hit against the dirt and fly overhead
as Aryia, Ryliah and Melissa rushed to get up against the dirt wall.Bookmark here

“Return fire!” Lylianna yelled.Bookmark here

The others returned fire. *Shit, I can’t tell how many there are*,
Lylianna thought as the bullets continued to whiz pass her. It was clear
to Lylianna that they would have to retreat back to the safety of
bridge.Bookmark here

“Everyone retreat now!” Lylianna yelled as she returned fire.Bookmark here

Lylianna and Melissa ran South as the others continued to lay down
suppressing fire. Deadeye looked over to Aryia and Ryliah.Bookmark here

“My magic won’t hold forever. You two go.”Bookmark here

“It’s fine, you two should go,” Aryia said as she returned fire.Bookmark here

With a simple nod Ryliah headed back with Lylianna and Melissa leaving
Deadeye and Aryia hugging the dirt wall closely as the sound of bullets
continued to ring in Aryia’s ears.Bookmark here

“Aryia you need to fall back now!” Deadeye said as he fired off a few
shots.Bookmark here

“No, I have my wind magic to help me. You go, I can catch up.”Bookmark here

Deadeye could not argue with her logic. He quickly got up made his way
in the direction of the others. Aryia continued to lay down suppressing
fire. She continued to fire until the dirt wall in front of her started
to crumble.Bookmark here

Aryia quickly ran for the rest of the Knights taking note of the new
dirt wall. She continued to run as bullets flew past her ears. After
running as fast as she could Aryia found herself hitting the ground with
intense force.Bookmark here

*Damn it*, Lylianna thought as she watched a stray bullet rip through
Aryia’s knee. Aryia grabbed her knee as she started to feel a
concentrated pain from the bullet wound. Bullets continued to ring out
from both sides as Lylianna debated what she should do.Bookmark here

“Cover me!” Lylianna yelled as she jumped over the dirt wall.Bookmark here

“Major, what are you doing!?” Melissa yelled as she continued to lay
down suppressing fire.Bookmark here

Lylianna rushed over to Aryia and picked her up from the ground,
throwing her over her shoulder. Once Lylianna had made it to the barrier
Deadeye had created she threw Aryia over it. As Lylianna climbed over
the make‑shift barrier a stray bullet entered clean through her arm.Bookmark here

Blood poured from Aryia’s knee as Lylianna kept pressure on her wound.
Aryia could not help but grit her teeth as the pain continued to grow.
The others continued to lay down covering fire as Melissa looked at
Aryia’s knee.Bookmark here

“Major, we need to get both you and Aryia medical attention and quick.”Bookmark here

“I hate to be the bearer of bad news but this barrier isn’t going to
last for no more then five minutes,” Deadeye said as he reloaded his
weapon.Bookmark here

Ryliah returned fire after reloading her weapon as Aryia began to fade
in and out of consciousness. Lylianna knew they needed to make it back
to the bridge before they end up dead. The others continued to try and
lay down covering fire as best they could until the earth barrier
collapsed. Deadeye quickly slammed his hands down to rebuild the barrier
as bullets flew by.Bookmark here

“We need to leave now!” Lylianna shouted as she looked up to the rest of
her squad.Bookmark here

“I can hold them off for only a bit Major. If they get in close that
will be another story,” Deadeye said as he reinforced the dirt barrier
that he had created.Bookmark here

“I can stay with you and hold them off as well,” Ryliah said as she
returned fire.Bookmark here

Melissa had finished wrapping up a tourniquet around Aryia’s leg to stop
the blood from pouring as Lylianna looked to Deadeye and Ryliah.Bookmark here

“You two can’t die, that is an order.”Bookmark here

“Right!”Bookmark here

Without another word Melissa picked up Aryia and carried her while
Lylianna followed close behind.Bookmark here

\* \* \*Bookmark here

Aryia laid there on the ground in a half awakened state. She wasn’t sure
what was going on around but at the same time she could somewhat tell
what was going on. Her left leg was covered in blood from the bullet
wound to her knee. A sudden pain shot up from her knee jolting her wide
awake.Bookmark here

The feeling of Melissa removing the bullet felt as if a dull dagger was
scraping and digging into her bone. Aryia quickly sat up in tremendous
pain, however, before she could do anything Lylianna pinned her
shoulders down.Bookmark here

“Aryia stay calm. You will be patched up soon.”Bookmark here

After a few seconds Aryia realized where she was and relaxed. She
noticed that Lylianna’s hand was pouring blood onto her
<abbr>BDU</abbr>.Bookmark here

“Lylianna, did you get shot?”Bookmark here

“Yes, however, it is a flesh wound. For now we need to focus on you.”Bookmark here

Aryia laid back as she tried not to focus on the pain surrounding her
knee. After a few minutes Melissa had finally managed to dig out the
bullet.Bookmark here

“I hope this bullet to the knee doesn’t put me out of action for to
long.”Bookmark here

“Well, chances are that it will put you out of action for a few weeks
but will at least take a month to fully heal,” Melissa said as she sewed
up the bullet wound.Bookmark here

Melissa started to look over Lylianna’s wound. Lucky for her the bullet
had went clean through making it quite easy for Melissa to patch up.Bookmark here

“What happens now?” Aryia asked.Bookmark here

“We go home.”Bookmark here

Aryia had a sad look upon her face.Bookmark here

“I am sorry Lylianna…”Bookmark here

“Sorry for what? You are not to blame for this Aryia.”Bookmark here

A few hours had passed and the Knights had found themselves back in the
Capital of Priserra. Melissa and Lylianna helped Aryia to her bed back
at the Black Knight Headquarters. Lylianna headed for the Emperor’s
castle to let him know of their mission.Bookmark here

“If you need anything Aryia be sure to use your radio to call one of us.
None of us should be one‑thousand kilometers away so it should be fine.”Bookmark here

“Thanks Melissa.”Bookmark here

Without anything else to say Melissa headed downstairs to let Aryia
rest. After some time had passed Aryia found herself drifting off to
sleep.Bookmark here

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