“The vargheists have fallen,” stated Rollo to Oliver’s left. The necromancer whipped his head in their direction just as the last of the powerful trio was pulled to the ground and devoured in the maws of Clara’s own vargheists. Oliver sat back down hard in his saddle and swore so deeply Greghor would be proud.
Fragile. Not a word he’d expect to use when it came to the deformed, deranged husks of former vampires.
“Dagomar, your crypt horrors will be needed to reinforce that flank. See there, she has pushed her skeletons into the river!”
His scarred companion willed his units forward into the oncoming spears. They splashed into the shoreline and halted the advancing skeletons immediately, forcing them to about-face and take heavy losses to their flank in order to find even ground once more.
Meanwhile, the other flank held firm in a back-and-forth between zombies and crypt horrors. No sooner would the horde threaten to overwhelm to the smaller unit then one of their own number would spit blood and claw its way to its feet once more. The battle of attrition was one Oliver was confident his side would win.
Somewhere off near the horizon the last few fel bats, scattered and broken from their master’s will, passed over the treeline never to be seen again. Oliver watched them go in spite of the thrashing melee just a few yards below him. Somewhere beyond that line would be the accouterments they’d been sent to recover. He didn’t relish the idea of having to fetch them, but he would certainly make use of any opportunity to glean information from a rival. His master hadn’t been dubbed ‘the Surgeon’ idly, after all.
The center of the melee fared well, despite Clara’s attempt at surprise. Black Guards, both his own and those brought by their Von Dhiel allies, were more than a match for the skeletons fielded by Clara. The rest was fodder, really, just as they’d been assured when they’d been given command of these troops…
His musings were interrupted by the blast of a war horn at their rear. Craning his neck and back in his saddle, Oliver spotted the unmistakable greenskin banners they’d been sent to burn only a few months prior.
“We should engage them ourselves,” said Rollo, even turning his skeletal steed about.
“Now, now,” said Ziegfried, holding a studious finger aloft, “Our troops have marched so far, it would be a shame not put them to use. Wait- do you think Balfgor is with them??” At this he turned his own mount to face the charge.
“Focus…” chided Oliver, “I’m sure that goblin hasn’t stopped running since the last time you saw him. Likely he’s made it to the Chaos Wastes by now.” Ziegfried sneered, revealing a fang, and slumped a little at that. Dagomar snapped his fingers at all of them and pointed across the river. Clara and her attendants, embedded with a unit of Crypt Horrors, had moved to reinforce their weakened right flank personally. Looks were exchanged and they each knew they couldn’t afford to lost that flank, especially with whatever was coming at them.
Together, the group charged and pulled up behind a unit of ghouls, urging them to press harder and bolstering the magics which bound them with their very presence. The greenskins emerged at their rear. Goblins… and only goblins. Their vanguard pushed hard, turned, and barely met the charge of the goblin slashers. Surrounded and beginning to break, it took both Rollo and Ziegfried’s complete focus to hold their numbers and keep them from crumbling.
Fortunately, the greenskins proved to be of feeble resolve and once their original squig charge and slashing riposte was countered, they broke and attempted to flee. Likely as not they simply had come across the vampire counts in-fighting and thought to capitalize on the opportunity, or at least something which passed for strategy in their minds anyways.
With their full attention back upon Clara’s forces once more, picking apart her remaining units was elementary. Rollo, Ziegfried, Dagomar and Oliver worked effectively and mercilessly together, commanding their forces like seasoned generals. When Clara threw down her rod and raised her empty hands, Oliver could only smile and let his thoughts turn dark indeed…