Chapter 34 – Lieutenant Julie
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The Supreme Commander of the Royal Army stood on the podium as all the recruits who passed the exam gathered together and stood in separate lines according to their role neatly and without any noise.
"Congratulations to everyone who passed the exam, I will now explain to you the hierarchy of the army and the order of promotion," said Natalia.
Everyone else got attentive as they heard this.
"You will start at the base rank of Officer, the next rank will be Lieutenant who will have 10 soldiers under him, they will be your direct superiors"
"Next is the rank of Captain, who will have 100 soldiers under him followed by the rank of Major who will have 1000 soldiers under him, followed by the rank of Colonel who will have 10,000 soldiers under him," said Natalia as she looked down.
Everyone gulped when they heard these numbers.
"Of course, they won't have these many people under right away as the army has not reached the estimated projection. His Majesty has set the estimated projection for the Royal Army to be at least 40 Million" said she loudly as everyone's heads spun.
The Kingdom of Lockhart had only 5 million people and was the 2nd least populous kingdom in the Human Realm, while many people were immigrating here daily it would still take a long time to hit that number.
"This is the army of the Future Human Emperor, we will rule the entire Human Realm in the future, of course, it has to be the biggest and strongest army that has ever existed," said Natalia as everyone else was riled up as they realized they were part of the army that was going to take over the world, if they got promoted , the power they might have would be unimaginable.
Everyone got pumped up hearing this and was glad they decided to join the army.
"The ranks above Colonel are Brigadier Rank who will have 100,000 soldiers under them, General Rank who will have 1 Million soldiers under them and the highest rank below the Supreme Commander which is the Marshall Rank, who will have 10 Million soldiers under them," said she.
Everyone gasped when they heard this, these recruits who just joined had their imaginations run wild as they thought how amazing it would be to command 10 Million soldiers and hold the rank of Marshall.
"You shall now say the oath and place your hand on His Majesty's seal. You will then be given your Officer Badge, Equipment and Weapons. Everyone who joins the army can ask for a magic book that is a stage above them. If a compatible magic book is not available you can choose another type of magic." said she as she jumped down and stood near the stand where the oath will be taken.
Everyone who heard this was shocked, "Eh, we will be given free magic books?" asked Julie shocked.
"Looks like so, they are certainly serious about making this army the strongest," said a girl who standing beside her.
As Julie looked at her she was shocked, this was the other Expert Stage who had broken 5 pillars, but as she looked at her now she realized it was just a small girl, the other girl who saw Julie looking at her like this puffed and said "You're thinking I am just a kid aren't you? Don't look at me like that kid, I am a lot older than you are" said she as she turned away.
"Ah, I didn't mean it that way," said Julie trying to clear the misunderstanding but the loli had already walked away towards the oath podium.
Before the oaths began, Natalia said, " This is your last chance to back out, after this, your lives and souls will belong to His Majesty King Lockhart and the Lockhart Kingdom"
They knew they would be imbued with magic that will prevent them from betraying the King and the Royal Family as it would give him the ability to kill them instantly, but they were already resolved for this and after hearing the speech and the potential power they could gain they did not hesitate at all.
One by one they all placed their hands on the seal and said their oaths.
Julie got on the podium and placed her hands on the seal.
"I swear that I will defend the Lockhart Kingdom and the Lockhart Family from all enemies that bear them harm and will obey the orders of the King and the superiors appointed over me and abide by the rules of the Royal Army," said she as the magic went through her soul and bound it.
She walked off the podium and took a deep breath, she had done it, she had actually made it into the army.
As everyone was finished with the oaths, they were given their badges and equipment.
Julie put the badge on her armor as she looked around, she still couldn't believe this was real. Everyone was changing into their armors and putting on their badges.
Soon a Mid Expert Stage soldier walked into the room their group had been asked to wait in, he had the badge of Captain on him as he gave everyone his greetings.
" I will be the Captain in charge of all of you, just let me know what magic books you need and you can take it from me later on. But before that, I will be appointing the 4 Lieutenants for this unit group."
"You will be in probation period for now as this is also a test for your leadership skills, you will only have 5 people under you right now and the remaining will be appointed to you after your probation ends." said he as he took out his notebook.
"Nina Scarlet," he called as the loli expert stage officer came forward, he gave her the badge of lieutenant.
"Joseph Star" he called as the other expert stage guy with glasses came forward and took his badge.
"Gray Ward" he called as Gray just stood there for a second before he got out of his stupor and took the badge.
"Julie Stone" he called the last name as Julie who was shocked came forward and took the badge.
"EH EH, is this for real" she whispered to Gray beside her.
"Haha, you would be a great leader Julie," said he as he laughed awkwardly
"Hm you don't look quite happy," she said
"Ah, I have never been good at leadership so this I am probably going to have to return this after probation," said he as he laughed.
"Don't be so pessimistic, you can do it?" she said trying to encourage him to which he only laughed awkwardly and said "Oh, if only you knew"
"I hope you perform well, remember you four Lieutenants are on probation and are being judged if you don't perform well I would have no choice but to demote you," said he seriously.
"We will be deployed very soon so go spend time with your family or friends as you probably won't see them for a while. Also, pick up your advanced salary as you go out from the financial department" said the Captain as he walked out.
In the War Council Room
"So, how did it go?" asked Glaze to Natalia who had just entered.
"It went well, Your Majesty. They are fired up and there's a lot of talents in this group, this is just the first one so I am curious to see how many more talents we can get" said she as bowed and sat down.
"We have opened the application to the entire kingdom, all those people who had the talent but had no resources or even if they did could not join the army are now doing so for the benefits, glory or just bloodlust," said Glaze as he laughed.
"I wonder how long it will take to get to 40 Million," she asked as she was also floored by the number when it was first said by Glaze.
"The Human Realm's population is around a billion, we are the 2nd least populous kingdom with only 5 Million people behind the Levistar Kingdom whose religious zealots turned everyone away from their Kingdom," said Glaze as sipped some wine.
"We will be fighting the entire Human Realm, which is an extremely large area to cover and the Demons at the same time. As strong as Master Stage Beings are there's only so many of them and they can't be everywhere including me."
"If we want to truly consolidate the Human Realm and defend against the Devil Realm we need to have the biggest standing army that can cover the entire length and breadth of the Human Realm" said Glaze with a smile.
"How is the immigration?" he asked Marzia who was sitting by the side.
"The rate of immigration has increased greatly since we opened our borders and offered lucrative benefits to anyone who came here. The benefit of getting a piece of land guaranteed after serving in the army for 6 months has caused a lot of people to immigrate and join the army besides the benefits of magic books and money," said she as she flipped her notebook.
"Though, reaching that number might take a while if we want immigration to be passive. We can cause mass immigration but I doubt any Kingdom would let that happen freely" said she and sighed.
"Of course they won't, the immigration policies will certainly help, my fame should also have a big effect but the easiest way to get a large number of people in a short time would be to go to war and conquer an entire Kingdom," said he as he looked at the map of Artanza Kingdom.
"Artanza has a population of 100 Million, it is also much larger than us but is a lot weaker in terms of strength, the average strength of their people pales in comparison to ours which is why we have been able to be ahead of them for centuries. What they lack in strength they have pulled through with numbers," said Marzia as she looked at Artanza.
"I need to paint the King of Artanza as traitorous and vile, a warmonger who thinks just of himself. My reputation as a Hero would probably be enough to paint me in positive light but I need to get these 100 million people riled up to join my Royal Army so that we get as many people as possible to apply"
"Their strength may be low but with our training, magic books and magic crystals they will get stronger in no time" said Glaze as he pointed to a location on the map.
"We will counter their attacks instead of going on the offensive, Celeste has infiltrated the Artanza Royal Army and has found that they plan to have a bulk of their force attack Rizvaria as it is well connected to the entire Kingdom. "
"Not everyone is an Expert Stage and even they can't fly for long durations so water is the fastest way of travel for us," said he as he pointed at Rizvaria.
"As you had commanded, we have built up the ports in all four of the major cities and all of them have been successfully strengthened with magic formations. The army can tap into this formation and increase their powers several times" said Marzia.
"Unlike the demonic invasion where we only had one front to defend against, this war will be on multiple fronts and will take place over a long period of time. So this should be quite helpful," said Natalia as she pondered the distribution of the army.