We arrived at the highly situated fortress that the entire corps was being moved to.
It was Corps Commander Dyle who led us.
As we’d been traveling with him for some time now, he was quite comfortable around us.
“…Well, at least that’s what I had thought.”
When I went to greet him after hearing the news, he said, ‘I hope you can hold back…in various ways.’
Hold back what?
The fortress was on top of a moderate hill, which gave you a great view of the surrounding area.
There was a river immediately below, and from there it was a steep cliff.
This made it a difficult fortress to attack, which made me think it was a very strategically important position.
“So, Baltasar really was positioned in a good place?”
I couldn’t help but think.
It was easy to go to someone’s aid while also being easy to defend.
You might say that it was the best kind of place to position soldiers that you wanted to save for later.
We would sleep here, watch the other three corps on the frontlines, and train all day.
It was suggested that this would last for half a year.
However, this could also stretch to as long as two and half years, which was tiresome to think about.
I felt that the situation with the surrounding countries would change greatly before those two and a half years were up.
“And now, your basic training will begin. However, that just means that you will be running.”
When we arrived, the training grounds had already been complete.
As I had never participated in real military training, I was curious to see what it was like. Apparently, it was done with different groups depending on race.
And so all of the Ogres participated.
Even those who dealt with clerical work received basic training, so I couldn’t skip it either.
Up until now, I had been the one to train my men, but now I was on the opposite side.
“Have you memorized the route? Good. Now do ten laps. Run!”
No one knew why, but we were made to run.
All the other Ogres began to dash.
Did they forget that they have to do ten laps?
This was the kind of training they did in the world I was from. That included Japan’s self defense force.
I remembered doing it when I was in highschool. They called it the ‘circuit.’
There were obstacles in front of you that you had to overcome.
There were twenty Ogres in all.
But as they dashed forward, they began to separate at the first mud hill.
Your feet would slip, and the incline grew steeper the higher you were. And then you would roll back down.
That usually meant taking the people behind with you as well.
“Bastard! What are you doing!”
“It’s your fault for not getting out of the way!”
They started to fight at the bottom.
Once you got past that, there was a high wall.
And since everyone’s hands and feet were covered in mud, they slid and slid.
The wall was made of logs, so it would have been possible to put your fingers and toes in the gaps and climb carefully. But since it was so slippery, it was more difficult.
“Out of my way! I can do it!”
“What? You’re the one who should move!”
And like that, they started to fight at the bottom of the wall.
After that, there were a bunch of logs that were tied together over a lake.
If you lost your balance while moving over them, you would fall into the water. And if you fell into the water, you had to swim to the beginning and start again. However, the moment that a second person jumped on a log, the first person would both lose their balance and fall off.
And then someone would jump on after that person, and the person in the front would fall off.
“Hey, you shook me off!”
“It’s because you were too slow!”
And then they started fighting.
It wasn’t until night time that everyone completed ten laps.
I felt that we were off to a bad start, and so I gathered everyone together.
“You all did terrible today. And I’m sure tomorrow won’t be any different. So, what are you all going to do about it?”
“But Golan, it was his fault for getting in my way.”
“You’re the one who was hindering me!”
In spite of always being so free, they became very quiet when I told them to.
“Was there anything that you learned during today’s training?”
I decided to ask them.
“It was hard.”
“It was annoying.”
“I didn’t know what I was even doing.”
“…Yes. That’s enough.”
I had been optimistic about someone realizing it. However, these guys weren’t exactly equipped to find the answer.
“What, Golan? You look funny.”
“Does your stomach hurt?”
“I was just thinking about my unending troubles… But more importantly, listen to me carefully.”
I said. They all became quiet. It felt good.
“Yes, today was a terrible day. But there is a reason for that. And so I want you to remember what I’m about to say. This training is supposed to be about overcoming something through teamwork. And so it’s outrageous for you to try and pass others, kick people down, and fight. It’s not about reaching the goal first. You have to work together so that everyone can reach the goal.”
“But then we won’t know who won.”
“Shut up, Beka. This isn’t a race. There are no winners or losers. Weren’t you listening? It’s ten laps and you’re done. There are rankings.”
“Oh? Was that so?”
“And even if there was such a thing as winning and losing, winning would be when you all finished earlier than the instructor expected. Otherwise, you all lose. Remember that.”
However, this idea of winning or losing as a group was hard for them to comprehend. Beka was tilting her head in puzzlement. But then I said, ‘don’t we all win if we defeat the enemy chief?’ and then they were satisfied.
Finishing the circuit in the least amount of time was like winning a war. That’s how they understood it now.
“And so I will tell you how we’ll do things from tomorrow on. You better remember it!”
And then I told the group of muscle heads what our strategy for the circuit would be.
The next day.
Several of the Ogres lay down at the bottom of the mud hill. The next Ogres would climb onto their shoulders and lie down as well.
More came from behind as they went higher. And when they had reached the top, they pulled up those who were at the bottom.
By repeating this, all of them were able to clear the hill in a single try.
Next was the log wall.
Once again, someone had to stay at the bottom so the others could climb up and over the wall.
Then the ones on top would pull the person at the bottom up. And like that, they easily overcame the wall.
When it came to the logs over the lake, the first Ogres would fall on purpose so that they could support the logs in the water.
By doing this, the others were able to cross while the logs were stable.
And then the ones holding the logs just needed to take turns crossing.
Like this, all of them were able to work together to clear the obstacles.
And unlike the previous day, they completed the ten laps before midday.
According to Beka, this was quite the ‘victory.’