William walked casually around the fort, occasionally dashing to one side or the other to avoid arrows. He couldn’t be bothered with dealing with the arrows head on. The defenders on the walls knew he was up to something, though they might not have figured out exactly what just yet. Unfortunately for them, he was far enough away they couldn’t do much to him.
By the time William had finished a full loop around the fort, nearly an hour had gone by. There was still no damage to the fort or the gates. William started walking around again, but this time he used ki to enhance the volume of his voice. The louder volume of his voice meant he could reach mana further away, though he still had to be able to control it at such a distance. That was a bit more difficult, so he spent more time on each individual section to gather the same amount of mana as his first trip around the fort.
Over an hour of near continuous chanting was tiring, but William took occasional short breaks. He wasn’t in urgent need of speed, so he took his time. As he was just about to finish his second loop around the fort, he finally got the results he wanted. The balls of dirt he chucked at the wall hit it, and broke apart. The only result William got was a little bit of dirt on the walls that wasn’t terribly distinguishable from what had naturally been there.
William continued his assault until he came back to where Chris was, at the gate. He looked at the gate and cast one last invisible spell. Then his figure blurred as he dashed toward the gate. A few arrows shot toward William, but when they hit the ground about a second later he was already far past them. In a few seconds total, he was at the gate, 300 feet away.
Chris was banging on the gate, but no longer being knocked back. William could actually see some dents in the middle of the gates now, but nothing significant. William picked Chris up, gathering ki as he did so, then he stabbed toward the middle. The was the sound of wood splintering, though William couldn’t see anything. However, he knew he had broken the bar keeping the gates closed. Without magical reinforcement, it couldn’t stand up forever.
William could have kept beating on the gate or attempted to ram it open, but that would have been foolish. Instead, he reached for the slight gap between each side and pulled. The gate opened outward, after all. That made it harder for a battering ram to break through it- though it was hard for them to anticipate someone who could break the foot-thick hardwood bar without first getting through the gate. They also hadn’t anticipated their magical barriers running out of energy so easily.
William stepped past the gate. There was a small corridor and then a portcullis, and William started walking toward it. When he was about halfway there, another metal portcullis dropped behind him, and arrows rained down from holes in the ceiling. William didn’t have much room to dodge, but he didn’t feel the need. William swept his arms up above him, using attached ki to deflect the arrows again. Though they had enough power to actually injure him at such a close range, all he had to do was direct them a bit away from himself.
William looked up at the ceiling and grinned. Before the archers could nock a second arrow, he started launching attacks toward the ceiling. Invisible, almost undetectable ki was the true part of each symbolic punch. Perhaps if the magical barrier still had energy it would have prevented such attacks… but perhaps not. Very few were knowledgeable enough about soul attacks to even realize they were an option. Certainly, the guards didn’t have a chance to react as half of them fell before even firing a second arrow. The seemingly unexplainable deaths of their comrades caused the others to hesitate long enough for William to finish them all off.
Back behind him, William saw Chris where he had left him, underneath the portcullis. William hadn’t sure he would be able to support it… not because he doubted his structural integrity, but he just hadn’t been sure if he would have slid out to either side. Fortunately, The portcullis was quite thick, and had impacted Chris with a flat bar against his flat top. There was a slight crack in the stone below, but Chris was holding the gate at his full height, a bit more than six and a half feet up. It was plenty for anyone to walk underneath, though they would have to duck slightly between the spikes at the bottom.
In a few moments William’s soldier’s arrived… though they had to dismount their horses. William couldn’t lift the portcullis, or at least not for very long- and not usefully. Where they were, they had cover from those on the walls because of the gates. Despite its advantage for resisting battering rams, that was a big drawback for the gates opening outward. Not that it should have gotten to such a point in most cases.
The soldiers who had followed after William quickly went over to the other portcullis to try to lift it. Though they should have been capable of lifting it together, they weren’t able to. It seemed to be locked in place. That meant they would need to get into the upper part of the gatehouse to open the inner portcullis.
It wouldn’t be long before more soldiers from the walls got in place to fire down through the murder holes. Even if they didn’t have bows… they could just pick up the bows from those before them. That meant they had to work quickly.
With a quick hop, William was on the outer side of the first portcullis. That got him to the top of the underside of the gatehouse. The wall material wasn’t good for climbing, but William was able to use ki to provide the necessary amount of friction to hold him up, effectively driving tiny spikes into the wall. The muscular strength to support his own weight was trivial, and he scurried toward the top of the wall. At the top of the wall spikes stuck out to prevent the very thing he was trying to do, even though in most cases he would have been electrocuted to death long before reaching that point.
Since he couldn’t fit in between them, he decided to use a spike as it was. He grabbed onto one, protecting his hand with a gauntlet of nearly solid ki, then pushed off the wall, using his grip on the spike as a pivot to launch himself around and over. William grinned at a surprised defender, “Hi.” Then he threw the soldier off of the wall.