The next day was a busy one in the city of Nole. The ten-foot lord high general marched his seven thousand seven hundred and seventy-seven men out of the city gates and formed them in line of battle on the brow of a hill. Then he asked Aunt Rivette to fly over the top of the mountain and see where the enemy was located. The old woman gladly undertook the mission. She had by this time become an expert flier, and being proud to resemble a bird, she dressed herself in flowing robes of as many colors as a poll-parrot could boast. When she mounted into the air, streamers of green and yellow silk floated behind her in quite a beautiful and interesting fashion, and she was admired by all beholders.
Aunt Rivette flew high above the mountaintop, and there she saw the great army of Queen Zixi climbing up the slope on the other side. The army also saw her and stopped short in amazement at seeing a woman fly like a bird. They had before this thought their queen sure of victory because she was a witch and possessed many wonderful arts; but now they saw that the people of Noland could also do wonderful things, and it speedily disheartened them.
Zixi ordered them to shoot a thousand arrows at Aunt Rivette, but quickly countermanded the order as the old woman was too high to be injured, and the arrows would have been wasted. When the army of Ix had climbed the mountain and was marching down again toward Nole, the lord high steward sent his dog Ruffles to them to make more mischief. Ruffles trotted soberly among the soldiers of Ix, and once in a while he would pause and say in a loud voice, "The army of Noland will conquer you."
Then all the soldiers would look around to see who had spoken these fearful words, but could see nothing but a little dog, and Ruffles would pretend to be scratching his nose with his left hind foot and would look so innocent that they never for a moment suspected he could speak.
"We are surrounded by invisible foes!" cried the soldiers, and they would have fled even then had not Queen Zixi called them cowards and stubbornly declared they only fancied they had heard the voices speak. Some of them believed her, and some did not, but they decided to remain and fight since they had come so far to do so. Then they formed in line of battle again and marched boldly toward the army of Noland.
While they were still a good way off and the generals were riding in front of their soldiers, the lord high executioner suddenly stretched out his long arm and pulled another general of Ix from his horse as he had done the day before, dragging him swiftly over the ground between the opposing armies until he was seized by the men of Nole and tightly bound with cords. The soldiers of Ix uttered murmurs of horror at this sight and stopped again. Immediately the long arm shot out and pulled another general from their ranks and made him prisoner.
Queen Zixi raved and stormed with anger, but the lord high executioner, who was enjoying himself immensely, continued to grab officer after officer and make them prisoners, and so far there had been no sign of battle; not an arrow had been fired nor an ax swung. Then, to complete the amazement of the enemy, the gigantic ten-foot general of the army of Nole stepped in front of his men and waved around his head a flashing sword six feet in length while he shouted in a voice like a roar of thunder that made the army of Ix tremble, "Forward, soldiers of Noland, forward! Destroy the enemy and let none escape!"
It was more than the army of Ix could bear. Filled with terror, the soldiers threw down their arms and fled in a great panic, racing over the mountaintop and down the other side and then scattering in every direction, each man for himself and as if he feared the entire army of Noland was at his heels. But it wasn't. Not a soldier of Nole had moved in pursuit. Every one was delighted at the easy victory, and King Bud was so amused at the sight of the flying foe that he rolled on the ground in laughter, and even the fierce-looking General Tollydob grinned in sympathy.
Then, with bands playing and banners flying, the entire army marched back into the city, and the war between Noland and Ix was over.