This chapter is updated by Novels.pl
The Friday Coalition's counterattack hit the invading Hexers hard!
Many occupied star systems turned into contested territory after the Fridaymen launched their offensives. The battered Fortune Legion took a backseat in this operation. Instead, the Sundered Phalanx and the Oni Guard led the charge and broke upon the fragile Hexer lines with great fanfare!
With the assistance of foreign expert pilots, the Fridaymen combat troops frequently managed to overwhelm their Hexer counterparts.
For most mech pilots, one of the most terrible outcomes that could happen was losing the support of an expert pilot!
These supreme warriors often acted as guardian angels for their respective mech regiments.
Up until recently, both sides adopted the same approach towards expert pilots. Each mech regiment had to be watched over by at least one Venerable.
They did not necessarily have to make a move. Their main purpose was to stay in reserve and act as a deterrent against enemy expert pilots.
As a result, expert pilots actually did not clash against each other that often. Only under special circumstances such as when the expert pilot enjoyed an absolute advantage would they make a move.
Of course, there were plenty of other scenarios where expert pilots sought out battles.
For example, the now-famous Venerable Ghanso Larkinson eagerly utilitized the numerical advantage bestowed by his Scarra to hunt down as many Hexer expert pilots as possible!
In a battle on another planet, several dozen glowing positron beams weaved a precise net at some rapidly-retreating Hexer mechs.
By now, no Hexer mech pilot underestimated the notorious Unit L anymore!
With a mech company of quasi-expert rifleman mechs backing up the Charlemagne, not even several Hexer expert mechs stood a chance!
"Damn cowards!" Venerable Ghanso snarled as his shots only inflicted severe damage against the evacuating expert mechs. "These Hexers are all talk!"
An expert swordsman mech flew alongside the Charlemagne. Different from the Charlemagne, the Jeanne D'Arc was almost purely geared towards melee combat. With the firepower at Venerable Ghanso's disposal, the feminine expert mech had no chance to show off its prowess.
"Your aim is getting worse." Venerable Foster noted in a bored tone. "This is the sixth time you've let the Hexer expert mechs go. Is the strain getting to you or are you just getting soft?"
"Shut up, Vesian! I can't help it if the Hexers run at the first sight of our mechs!"
Though the two were forced to fight alongside each other, their animosity hadn't lessened much. Just because they were fighting for what they thought was right did not mean they had to like their comrades.
With foreigners such as Venerable Ghanso Larkinson and Venerable Relia Foster taking part in the offensive, the war continued to tilt in the favor of the Fridaymen!
While the Hexers were scrambling to defend their hard-fought gains, a new mech sprung onto the scene.
On more and more contested planets, the brand-new Valkyrie Redeemer model emerged with high expectations!
The Blessed Squire had immediately showcased its value in battle. The Hexers hoped that the Valkyrie Redeemer might do even better!
After all, compared to a modest supportive knight mech, the aerial marauder mech was much more offensive-oriented. Its manufacturing cost was fairly high, but it was a machine that was completely geared towards women.
A lot of Hexers looked forward to piloting such a unique machine!
The effectiveness of the Valkyrie Redeemer did not disappoint. Against ordinary mech pilots such as Fortune Legionnaires, the narrow death beams were usually capable of disrupting their focus.
Sometimes, the marked mech pilots even froze, causing their mechs to turn into vulnerable targets!
The Valkyrie Redeemer pilots all learned to take advantage of this state by driving their spears through the cockpits of their targets!
Against more disciplined opponents such as the Oni Guard, the Valkyrie Redeemer still retained a degree of effectiveness.
Now that the Konsu mech pilots knew what to expect, they no longer allowed the Market For Death ability to consume their minds. Yet even so, each human was vulnerable to an extent.
Once the Valkyrie Redeemers shifted to putting multiple Marks on a single target, even the most disciplined mech pilots lost their concentration!
As time went by, the Valkyrie Redeemer quickly generated a lot of notoriety. It couldn't be helped as the aerial mechs proved to be wondrously effective at conducting small and sudden raids!
The Fridaymen mech forces on the ground reacted by grouping their mechs into larger units. While this slowed down their counterattack, the Valkyrie Redeemers could no longer use their inherent advantages to annihilate individual squads!
This defense reaction frustrated many Valkyrie Redeemer mech pilots. They loved swooping down from the air in order to demolish individual squads. Now, the stubborn Fridaymen no longer moved out unless they could gather at a mech company.
When at least forty mechs traveled together, their ability to defend against aerial attacks increased remarkably.
The mech pilots of most dive-oriented aerial mechs no longer wanted to tangle against these targets. Even if they brought twice as many mechs, it was impossible to disable the entire mech formation. In fact, due to the fears of colliding against each other, entering into a dive with too many mechs was quite detrimental!
The Valkyrie Redeemer mech pilots weren't reconciled to this outcome. They had tasted the power of their new mechs and became more attuned to their capabilities.
While they could still play a useful role by hovering at a distance while taking potshots with their pulse submachine guns, the results were not comparable.
"This isn't working! The Oni Guard will overrun Leemar II entirely if this keeps up!" Captain Avinx growled.
"Then what do we do, ma'am?" A trusted lieutenant asked.
"We throw the rulebook out of the window. Who says we can't dive in greater numbers? Follow me and stay together!"
In the span of a single week, her mech company sustained numerous losses. Though her mech regiment attempted to replenish her mechs and mech pilots, she was left with 28 Valkyrie Redeemers including her own along with just three auxiliary mechs.
Not every attack run resulted in a one-sided crush! Even with the various advantages of their Valkyrie Redeemers, the Oni Guard were still capable of shooting them down at a distance.
In fact, the increased amount of ranged mechs accompanying each unit was one of the biggest reasons why the Valkyrie Redeemers felt restrained!
After scouring the edges of the frontline for a time, Captain Avinx's mech company encountered several enemies on the ground and in the air.
None of them were suitable targets. Their numbers were either too much to handle or enemy support was too close at hand.
It wasn't until several hours later that the Valkyrie Redeemers sniffed out a retreating element of Oni Guard mechs.
Though around seventy Fridaymen machines were retreating in good order, their condition varied considerably. Some only bore some dust marks while others had lost entire limbs.
Many mechs bore terrible scars or exposed fragile internals. The ammunition and energy reserves of the ranged mechs must dipped below a certain point as well.
The problem was that the quantity still posed a threat to Captain Avinx's unit. The melee mechs each had the potential to surround and mob the Valkyrie Redeemers at the end of their dive.
Even so, the Hexers did not feel deterred!
"This is a golden opportunity! Let us move and teach these beaten dogs the might of the Superior Mother!"
"For the Mother!"
The Valkyrie Redeemers soared forth while gaining a bit of altitude. The retreating Oni Guard mechs did not take much notice at first. It wasn't until later the Fridaymen realized that the Hexer aerial mechs were actually about to commit to an attack run.
Fearful of what might happen, the Oni Guard machines no longer ran away but instead stopped in place in order to meet the incoming attack.
Defeated or not, seventy mechs still posed a considerable threat! With the melee mechs standing by, a large number of ranged mechs began to fire volleys at the diving Valkyrie Redeemers.
"Mark the ranged mechs!" Captain Avinx gritted her teeth. "Two on one!"
Each mech automatically received a targeting instruction from Captain Avinx's mech. This allowed the Valkyrie Redeemers to target their Marked For Death abilities onto a specific mech in the best possible distribution.
Over half of the ranged mechs suddenly began to slow and miss. It was already a challenge for their mech pilots to maintain their focus when Marked a single time. With two Marks on them, it was no longer possible for them to keep their aim straight!
The affected ranged mech pilots had little choice but to leave the targeting entirely to AIs.
This hardly helped! The stalker fields projected by the Hexer auxiliary mechs continually confounded detailed scans and targeting calculations.
By effectively incapacitating half of the enemy formation's ranged mechs, the Valkyrie Redeemers managed to close in without losing any of their numbers!
The Valkyrie Redeemers at the front of the diving formation flew back, allowing the mechs in the second line to take the brunt of the damage.
The Hexer mech pilots adopted a specific formation that exposed only some of their mechs to enemy fire.
Ordinarily, the formation wasn't practical, but the Valkyrie Redeemer model just happened to be equipped with a modest shield and a high-quality armor system. It was no problem for them to endure enemy fire for a short time!
Though the damage to the mechs wasn't easy to repair, none of the Hexer mech pilots cared at the moment. It only took a short time for their Valkyrie Redeemers to dive within a kilometer of their targets!
As the ground rapidly came closer, Captain Avinx issued a quick command!
"Widen glows by thirty degrees!"
The Hexer mech pilots obeyed in an instant. The dark third eyes of their mechs that previously shone narrow beams of light at their Marks suddenly widened.
Each third eye shone like torches! The directional light they emitted no longer affected a number of specific targets, but attacked the entire formation of Oni Guard mechs at once!
Seventy Fridaymen mech pilots suddenly felt disturbed! It was as if the diving mechs turned into a giant hammer of doom that was about to slam right on top of their heads!
With so many glows overlapping on top of each other, it didn't matter if they were all dispersed. The strength of facing so many of them at the same time was not much different from being targeted by a narrow beam!
"DEATH TO THE FRIDAYMEN!"
The ground thundered with force as the Valkyrie Redeemers successfully drove their spears into the chests and other parts of their targets!
The Valkyrie Redeemers may have targeted their Marks towards the enemy ranged mechs at first, but their spears mostly punctured through the enemy melee mechs!
Though not every target struck succumbed from the dive attack, at least twenty of them were no longer a factor!
Unfortunately, that left around fifty Oni Guard mechs. As their mech pilots were slowly trying to recover from being subjected by the Valkyrie Redeemer's glow, Captain Avinx already made her next move.
"Shock and Awe, five second intervals!"
A module on the Valkyrie Redeemers suddenly launched a grenade into the ranks of the Oni Guard. An instant later, the Starburst grenades exploded, unleashing a strong but very localized burst of ECM and other disruptive measures!
As the closest mechs became affected by the detonation, the Valkyrie Redeemers spread out and surged forward while at the same time unleashing a strong pulse that shocked the minds of the closest enemy mech pilots!
The combination of technological and mental disruption generated a brief but very crucial window of opportunity.
At least twenty more mechs were struck by the Valkyrie Redeemers! The Hexers mechs easily inflicted either crippling or fatal attacks as the disoriented Oni Guard mechs failed to put up an adequate defense!
Before the remaining Konsu mech pilots were able to regain their composure, they received yet another shock as a second volley of Starburst grenades detonated in their midst!
Together with the release of yet another shock pulse, the Valkyrie Redeemers managed to down even more mechs!
Five more seconds passed in no time. Following a third dual pulse attack, the Valkyrie Redeemers completely went on the offensive.
Just a minute later, every single Oni Guard mech had fallen. Captain Avinx grinned as she took stock of her own unit. She hadn't lost a single Valkyrie Redeemer!
Though many of her mechs were not in good shape anymore, the damage could always be fixed. The dead could not be revived!
"This is the true purpose of the Valkyrie Redeemer!"
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