“A sound suggestion, my lord. I would like to hear ideas from the High Marshall, General Karim, as well as Andrug Raisal before I decide the plan of action,” Mehmed invited the foremost military commanders to speak.
“Thank you, Your Highness…” the Lord Marshall stood up and pitched his ideas. They went in circles a bit with General Karim advocating a full charge and the High Marshall in favour of a more subtle approach.
The argument kept up for a while, with minor interjections from various nobles, and Mehmed listened to them all stoically. After they started repeating themselves, Abdullah noticed Mehmed’s signal and stepped in to suggest a plan.
“I suggest we break our forces into three groups, we have an ample number advantage, and this could be well utilized to thoroughly crush our enemies. One of the forces would evacuate the villages downstream and downwind, with our more inexperienced and green soldiers deployed there. I suggest a seasoned commander accompany them to ensure swift action in case of unexpected developments.” Abdullah suggested.
“It’s a good plan and I think Akber well suited to that task-” Mehmed interjected smoothly.
“What?! But cuz, I want to be in the thick of it! This way I’ll be stuck herding a bunch of brats barely out of nappies,” Akber whined.
Mehmed grinned good naturedly, slapping his cousins on the back, “You’re the heir, we can’t both be in the danger zone at the same time cousin.” He rebuked gently but firmly. “As for this plan, I approve of it. We shall have General Karim lead the charge into the valley, with the first and third company, while High Marshall Zaid lies in wait on the hillsides with the second and fourth company accompanied by myself and Andrug Raisal, I shall take the blood Gaurd with me. Duke Ghamera shall accompany the General in his charge.”
“Very well Your Majesty, I hear and obey,” Abdullah immediately fell to one knee with his hand fisted over his heart, setting the tone for the rest of the nobles who soon followed course with a chorus of “We hear and obey!”
“Thank you for your leal service. Please see to the arrangements, we set art out at dusk on the third day. Report the progress to Us at the morning brief. Dismissed,” Mehmed declared.
The nobles bowed one by one and filed out. Though not before a few specific ones were handed a discreet slip of paper.
That night Mehmed, accompanied by Abdullah disguised as servant, met with more than five individuals of great power and renown in the Empire, each harbouring their own secret seeds of resentments for the House of Aahir. They were all told a very similar tale, with but one key detail changed.
Thus the plan was set in motion, and on the third day, at dusk, the Empire’s best and brightest ambushed the home of the nomadic Vaishi.