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Mediterranean Hegemon of Ancient Greece – Chapter 507: Battle of Wits Bahasa Indonesia

The herald did not answer but only emphasised that this was an order from King Davos!

Matonis was left speechless, so he angrily ordered, “Tell the senior centurions to lead our brothers to retreat. Retreat very, very slowly!…”

The experienced legati don’t need more detailed instructions from Davos as they all know how to deal with incoming cavalry by sending the seventh brigade of each legion to the front of the army.

The pursuing Numidian and Celtic cavalry came near the Theonian frontline and saw the long formation of infantry retreating: The light infantry formed a scattered line behind the heavy infantry, firing arrows at enemy cavalries, which resulted in the Numidian cavalries being unable to get close enough to the formation to throw their javelins.

Although these foreigners were fierce, they were not foolish enough to storm such a huge army formation. Thus they stopped their pursuit and kept a safe distance away from the Theonian army…

. . . . . . . . . . . . .

“What did you say?! The Theonians are retreating?!” Dionysius had just crossed the eastern bank of the Targines and became anxious after hearing Acilita’s report. After all, what he feared the most was the Theonians retreating quickly after finding out that Dionysius deceived them and returning to the north bank of the Neto before he could even lead his army, wasting all the efforts he made these past two days.

“Order the troops to increase their pace! Don’t let the enemy escape!!”


“Wait!” Phidias suddenly shouted.

Although Dionysius was unhappy at Phidias’ interruption, he also knew that there must be some reason for the silent Spartan to voice his thought at this critical moment.

“You just said that the Theonians was on a ‘formation’. Why did you use the word ‘formation’?” Phidias hurriedly asked Acilita.

Although Acilita hated Phidias’ impolite tone, he knew that he could not mess up the Spartan, so he impatiently said, “That’s right, I said ‘formation’ because they retreated orderly and at the same time.”

Dionysius’ heart leapt when he heard this.

“What kind of formation?” Asked Phidias.

Acilita thought about it and simply drew a ‘horizontal’ on the ground, “It’s very long like this…”

Phidias bent over and looked at the ground. He then once again asked, “Which direction are we in?”

“Here.” Acilita pointed in front of the ‘horizontal line’.

After hearing this, Phidias confirmed his suspicion, so he raised his head, looked at Dionysius, and said, “I fear that the new king of Theonia had already made preparations for our plan and set up a big net. By then, your soldiers would already be exhausted and without a complete formation, which would result in them being no match for the Theonians, and the only thing that awaits you can only be defeat.”

Dionysius looked at the ground and was lost in thought. Although he didn’t want to believe that the painstaking and thorough plan he made to lure the enemy was seen through by the young Theonian and was instead lured by the other party, Phidias’ words were like a slap in his face. Fortunately, this war was a matter of survival, so he didn’t have the time to care about these minor things. After coughing a few times, he said, “So what should we do now?”

“Immediately stop our advance, form up, and march towards them at normal speed!” Phidias drew another ‘horizontal line’ in front of the ‘horizontal line’.

“But if we take too much time, the Theonians might escape.” Dionysius said anxiously.

As a bystander, Phidias could remain calm, “It’s better to let them escape than be defeated by them!”

Dionysius became silent when he heard this, and his thought became a mess as he weighed the gains and losses.

He then turned his head to look at the dust flying in the air that was stirred up by the massive, quick marching of the army…

When he looked closer at the densely packed soldiers passing in front of him: Although they wore armour and the shields and spears were still on their shoulders, he could see sweat soaking through the lining, and the combined sound of rapid breathing almost deafened him…

He then looks at the vast Crotone plain; everything is unusually quiet, except for the occasional mercenary cavalry galloping across the plain. He then thought that the Theonian army might be waiting somewhere he couldn’t see…which made Dionysius hesitate for a while. Finally, he made up his mind, “Phidias, just do what you had said. I have decided to let you arrange the formation.”

Phidias became excited as this was what he wanted, so he didn’t delay the matter.

“Should I withdraw all my men?” Asked Acilita.

“No, you and Gaba’s cavalry continue expelling the enemy’s cavalry to prevent them from spying on our formation while watching their movements.” Phidias began giving orders, “And…you must come to report the details of the formation laid out by the Theonians to me…”

. . . . . . . . . . . . .

It was already past noon, yet there was still no sign of the Syracusan army, which confused Davos. Fortunately, even after the Theonian cavalry was suppressed and unable to observe the enemy, the Theonian fleet circled the coast of the southern Crotone plain. But after seeing no sign of the retreating Syracusan army, the puzzled Mithridates decisively sent a penteconter to land quietly on a concealed beach for the sailors to disembark and investigate. Not long after, they find out Syracuse’s secret.

‘Turns out that the Syracusans got into formation!’ After receiving the news from the scouting ship. Davos felt both regret and expectation.

Davos then mumbled, “It seems like Dionysius is quite cautious. Since he won’t come, I’ll come over and have a fair and decisive battle!”

“Order the whole army to turn around and march south!” Davos’ pride burst out as he loudly gave the order.

“Why are we heading south again?!” Many soldiers were puzzled and dissatisfied with the repeated change of orders.

But the legati and the officers had already sensed the impending battle, such as Amintas and Matonis, who became excited.

“Reporting to his majesty, the 5,000 reinforcements from Crotone and Terina have arrived!”

Davos became excited after hearing this, “Great! But who’s the leading strategoi?”

“Siprus is leading Terina while Milo is leading Crotone.”

Hearing that, Davos became flabbergasted, “Milo? The Milo that Crotone expelled?”

“Yes, your majesty. It is indeed him after confirming it! After the outbreak of war, Crotone recalled him, and the people immediately elected him as the strategos after the city of Crotone fell.” Tolmides knew Davos would have some doubts, so he had already done his research.

‘Those two strategoi are all old acquaintances!’ Besides his frequent contact with Siprus, Davos learned of Milo’s commanding ability after the second war with Crotone. Hence Davos even believes that Milo was a political figure with an open mind and flexible thinking that could see the big picture of the city-states in the South Italian Alliance.

Since both of them were not incompetent, Davos felt relieved. Then he asked, “Are all the reinforcements they led heavy infantry?”

“They have 300 light infantry while the rest are all heavy infantry.” Answered Tolmides.

“In that case….” Davos thought and said, “Let them go to the left end of the first legion and march with the enemy.”

“At the far left end of the formation?” Upon hearing this, Tolmides, who understood Davos’ plan, asked with some unease, “Your majesty, that is where the enemy would focus their attack, so would they be able to fend them off?”

“The Syracusans captured their city and slaughtered their loved ones, which made their hatred towards Syracuse stronger than ours and made their morale higher than our soldiers! I believe that even if they fight to the last person, they will never shrink back!” Said Davos slowly and decisively.

“I understand.” Without further hesitation, Tolmides turned and prepared to rush the heralds but was stopped by Davos, “You must personally go tell Milo and Siprus that I cannot come to meet them because of the situation’s urgency. With the impending battle, I hope they will make full preparations and work together to get their revenge on the Syracusans who invaded our homes and harmed our people!”

“Yes.” Tomides excitedly gave a military salute.

. . . . . . . . . . . . .

Crotone and Terina’s army descended the hill and went around the northern gate to leave the city. And the only things they could see were broken walls and ruins, which further increased the anger in the soldiers’ hearts. Afterwards, Milo and Siprus managed to disperse the small number of Numidian cavalries harassing and pursuing them and finally catching up with the Theonian army marching south and receiving the order sent by Tolmides, relieving Milo and Siprus.

Because their troops came from the east, they just happened to be located at the far left end of the Theonian army’s formation. Thus they only need to connect with the first legion of Theonia without the need to expend any more energy, as they know that the soldiers were already a bit out of breath from their journey here.

Seeing that the two strategoi were somewhat relaxed, Tolmides could not help but remind them, “Two lords, from his majesty’s analysis; the left flank will be the enemy’s focus of attack, so you must stay vigilant!”

“Why?” Milo and Siprus asked in unison.

Before each battle, Davos would explain his battle intentions in detail to the legati and senior officers to ensure that they could execute them smoothly. And with the great battle about to start, there was no need for Tolmides to conceal it. Thus he said without mincing his words, “Since Syracuse had more soldiers than ours, his majesty led the army across the Neto river with the seventh legion marching along the east bank of the Targines River. So if Syracuse wants to take advantage of their number fully, it is their best choice to focus on attacking our left-wing.”


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