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Thursday, February 28, 2013

"Romance of the Three Kingdoms" (by Luo Guanzhong, Translated by C. H. Brewitt-Taylor)

SGS Characters and Cards in this chapter:

Chapter 118

The news of the fall of Mianzhu and the deaths in battle of Zhuge Zhan and Zhuge Shang, father and son, brought home to the Latter Ruler that danger was very near, and he summoned a council.         
 Then the officials said, "Panic has seized upon the people, and they are leaving the city in crowds. Their cries shake the very sky!"
 Sorely he felt his helplessness. Soon they reported the enemy were actually near the city, and many courtiers advised flight.  
 "We do not have enough troops to protect the capital. Leave the city and flee south to the seven counties of Nanzhong," said they. "The country is difficult and easily defended. We can get the Mangs to come and help us."   
 But Minister Qiao Zhou opposed, saying, "No, no, that will not do. The Mangs are old rebels. To go to them would be a calamity."       
 Then some proposed seeking refuge in Wu: "The people of Wu are our sworn allies, and this is a moment of extreme danger. Let us go thither."      
 But Qiao Zhou also opposed this, saying, "In the whole course of past ages no emperor has ever gone to another state. So far as I can see, Wei will presently absorb Wu, and certainly Wu will never overcome Wei. Imagine the disgrace of becoming a minister of Wu and then having to style yourself minister of Wei. It would double the mortification. Do neither. Surrender to Wei, and Wei will give Your Majesty a strip of land where the ancestral temple can be preserved, and the people will be saved from suffering. I desire Your Majesty to reflect well upon this."         
 The distracted Latter Ruler retired from the council without having come to any decision. Next day confusion had become still worse. Qiao Zhou saw that matters were very urgent and presented a written memorial. The Latter Ruler accepted it and decided to yield.
 But from behind a screen stepped out the fifth of the Emperor's sons, Liu Chan, Prince of Beidi.         
 Liu Chan shouted at Qiao Zhou, "You corrupt pedant, unfit to live among people! How dare you offer such mad advice in a matter concerning the existence of a dynasty? Has any emperor ever yielded to the enemy?"   
The Latter Ruler had seven sons in all---Liu Rui, Liu Dao, Liu Zhong, Liu Zan, Liu Chan, Liu Xue, and Liu Ju. But the ablest, and the only one above the common level of people, was this Liu Chan.
 The Latter Ruler turned feebly to his son and said, "The ministers have decided otherwise: They advise surrender. You are the only one who thinks that boldness may avail, and would you drench the city in blood?"

The Prince said, "While the First Ruler lived, this Qiao Zhou had no voice in state affairs. Now he gives this wild advice and talks the most subversive language. There is no reason at all in what he says, for we have in the city many legions of soldiers, and Jiang Wei is undefeated in Saber Pass. He will come to our rescue as soon as he knows our straits, and we can help him to fight. We shall surely succeed. Why listen to the words of this dryasdust? Why abandon thus lightly the work of our great forerunner?"    

The Latter Ruler became angry at this harangue and turned to his son, saying, "Be silent! You are too young to understand Heaven's will!"      

Liu Chan beat his head upon the ground and implored his father to make an effort.        

"If we have done our best and defeat yet comes, if parents and children, lords and ministers have set their backs to the wall and died in one final effort to preserve the dynasty, then in the shades of the Nine Golden Springs we shall be able to look the First Ruler in the face, unashamed. But what if we surrender?"  

The appeal left the Latter Ruler unmoved.  

The Prince cried, "Is it not shameful in one day to throw down all that our ancestors built up with so great labor? I would rather die."     

The Latter Ruler, now very angry, bade the courtiers thrust the young man out of the Palace. Then he ordered Qiao Zhou to prepare the formal Act of Surrender. After it had been written, three officers---Adviser Zhang Shao, Imperial Son-in-Law and Commander Deng Liang, and Minister Qiao Zhou---were sent with it and the Hereditary Seal to the camp of Deng Ai to offer submission.         

Every day Deng Ai's horsemen rode to the city to see what was afoot. It was a glad day when they returned reporting the hoisting of the flag of surrender. The general had not long to wait. The three messengers soon arrived and presented the letter announcing surrender and the seal therewith.

 Deng Ai read the letter with great exultation, and took possession of the seal. He treated the envoys courteously, and by their hands sent back a letter to allay any anxiety among the people. In due time they reentered the city and bore this missive to the Latter Ruler, and they told him they had been treated well. The Latter Ruler read the letter with much satisfaction. Then he sent Minister Jiang Xian to order Jiang Wei to surrender.  

Then Li Hu, Chair of the Secretariat, carried to the victorious Deng Ai the statistical documents of the resources of the kingdom:  
 ,, households, ,, souls, , active armed soldiers of all ranks, and , civil employees. Besides, there were granaries with ,, carts of grain, treasuries with , pounds of gold and silver and , rolls of silks of many qualities, and many unenumerated but precious things in the various storehouses. 

Li Hu arranged that the ceremony of surrender should take place on the first day of the twelfth month.       

The wrath of Prince Liu Chan swelled high as heaven when he heard that his father had actually arranged the date of his abdication.    

Girding on his sword, he was setting out for the Palace when his Consort, Lady Cui, stopped him, saying, "My Prince, why does your face bear this look of terrible anger?"      

He replied, "The army of Wei is at the gates, and my father has made his Act of Surrender. Tomorrow he and all his ministers are going out of the city to submit formally, and the dynasty will end. But rather than bow the knee to another, I will die and go into the presence of the First Ruler in the realms below."      

"How worthy; how worthy!" replied she. "And if my lord must die, I, thy handmaid, prays that she may die first. Then may my Prince depart." 

"But why should you die?"      

"The Prince dies for his father and the handmaid for her husband. One eternal principle guides us all."   

Thereupon she dashed herself against a pillar, and so she died. Then Liu Chan slew his three sons and cut off the head of his Consort that he might sever all ties to life lest he be tempted to live. Bearing the head of the princess in his hand, he went to the Temple of the First Ruler, where he bowed his head, saying, "Thy servant is ashamed at seeing the kingdom pass to another. Therefore has he slain his Consort and his sons that nothing should induce him to live and forego death."

This announcement recited, he made yet another to his ancestors.     
 "My ancestors, if you have spiritual intelligence, you know the feelings of your descendant."   
 Then he wept sore till his eyes ran blood, and he committed suicide. The people of Shu grieved deeply for him, and a poet has praised his noble deed.     

Both king and courtiers, willing, bowed the knee,
One son alone was grieved and would not live.
The western kingdom fell to rise no more,
A noble prince stood forth, for aye renowned
As one who died to save his forbears' shame.
With grievous mien and falling tears he bowed
His head, declaring his intent to die.
While such a memory lingers none may say
That the Han Dynasty has perished.

When the Latter Ruler knew of the death of his son, he sent people to bury him.  

Soon the main body of the Wei army came. The Latter Ruler and all his courtiers to the number of sixty went out three miles from the north gate to bow their heads in submission, the Latter Ruler binding himself with cord and taking a coffin with him. But Deng Ai with his own hands loosened the bonds and raised the Latter Ruler from the ground. The coffin was burned. Then the victorious leader and the vanquished Emperor returned into the city side by side.
Wei's legions entered Shu,
And the ruler thereof saved his life
At the price of his honor and his throne.
Huang Hao's vicious counsels had brought disaster
Against which Jiang Wei's efforts were vain.
How bright shone the loyalty of the faithful one!
How noble was the grandson of the First Ruler!
Alas! It led him into the way of sorrow.
And the plans of the First Ruler,
Excellent and far-reaching.
Whereby he laid the foundations of a mighty state,
Were brought to nought in one day.

The common people rejoiced at the magnanimity of Deng Ai, and met the returning cavalcade with burning incense and flowers. The title of General of the Flying Cavalry was given to the Latter Ruler and other ranks were given to the ministers who had surrendered.      

Deng Ai requested the Latter Ruler to issue one more proclamation from the Palace to reassure the people, and then the conquerors took formal possession of the state and its granaries and storehouses. Two officers---Governor of Yizhou Zhang Shao and Minister Zhang Jung---were sent into the counties and territories to explain the new situation and pacify malcontents, and another messenger was sent to exhort Jiang Wei to yield peaceably. A report of the success was sent to Capital Luoyang.  
 Huang Hao, the eunuch whose evil counsels had wrought such ruin to his master, was looked upon as a danger, and Deng Ai decided to put him to death. However, Huang Hao was rich, and he gave bribes to Deng Ai's people, and so he escaped the death penalty. 
 Thus perished the House of Han. Reflecting on its end a poet recalled the exploits of Zhuge Liang the Martial Lord, and he wrote a poem.       

The denizens of tree-tops, apes and birds,
Most lawless of crested things, yet knew
And feared his mordant pen. The clouds and winds
Conspired to aid him to defend his lord.
But nought awaited the leader's precepts, wise
To save; with base content the erstwhile king
Too soon surrendered, yielding all but life.
In gifts Zhuge Liang was peer with
Guan Zhong and Yue Yi,
His hapless death compared with
Zhang Fei's and Guan Yu's;
Sad sight, his temple on the river's brink!
It wrings the heart more than the tearful verse
Of the Liangfu songs he most loved.

In due time Minister Jiang Xian reached the Saber Pass, and gave Jiang Wei the Latter Ruler's command to surrender to the invaders. Jiang Wei was dumb with amazement at the order; his officers ground their teeth with rage and mortification. Their hair stood on end with anger; they drew their swords and slashed at stones in their wrath.    

Shouted they, "While we are fighting to our death, the Latter Ruler has yielded!" 

The roar of their angry lamentation was heard for miles.

But Jiang Wei soothed them with kindly words, saying, "Generals, grieve not. Even yet I can restore the House of Han!"       

"How?" cried they.        

And he whispered low in their ears.  

The flag of surrender fluttered over the ramparts of Saber Pass, and a messenger went to Zhong Hui's camp. When Jiang Wei and his generals drew near, Zhong Hui went out to meet them.    

"Why have you been so long in coming?" said Zhong Hui.       

Jiang Wei looked him straight in the face and said, without a tremor, but through falling tears, "The whole armies of the state are under me, and I am here far too soon!"    

Zhong Hui wondered about this firm remark, and said nothing more. The two saluted each other and took their seats, Jiang Wei being placed in the seat of honor.        

Jiang Wei said, "I hear that every detail of your plans, from the time you left the South of River Huai till now, has been accomplished. The good fortune of the Sima family is owing to you, and so I am the more content to bow my head and yield to you. Had it been Deng Ai, I should have fought to the death, for I would not have surrendered to him!" 

Then Zhong Hui broke an arrow in twain, and they two swore close brotherhood. Their friendship became close-knit. Jiang Wei was continued in command of his own army, at which he secretly rejoiced. He sent Jiang Xian back to Chengdu.      

As conqueror, Deng Ai arranged for the administration of the newly-gained territory. He made Shi Zuan Imperial Protector of Yizhou and appointed Qian Hong, Yang Xin, and many others to various posts. He also built a tower in Mianzhu in commemoration of his conquest.        

At a great banquet, where most of the guests were people of the newly-conquered land, Deng Ai drank too freely and in his cups became garrulous.

With a patronizing wave of his hand, he said to his guests, "You are lucky in that you have had to do with me. Things might well have been otherwise, and you might all have been put to death, if you surrender to other leader!" 

The guests rose in a body and expressed their gratitude. Just at that moment Jiang Xian arrived from his visit to Jiang Wei to say that Jiang Wei and his army had surrendered to Zhong Hui. Deng Ai thereupon conceived a great hatred for Zhong Hui, and soon after he wrote to Luoyang a letter something like this:        

"I would venture to remark that misleading rumors of war should precede actual attack. Now that Shu has been overcome, the manifest next move is against Wu, and in present circumstances victory would easily follow an attack. But after a great effort, both leaders and led are weary and unfit for immediate service. Therefore of this army twenty thousand Wei troops should be left west of Longyou, and with them twenty thousand Shu troops, to be employed in boiling salt so as to improve the finances. Moreover, ships should be built ready for an expedition down the river. When these preparations shall be complete, then send an envoy into Wu to lay before its ruler the truth about its position. It is possible that matters may be settled without any fighting.   

"Further, generous treatment of Liu Shan will tend to weaken Sun Xiu; but if Liu Shan be removed to Luoyang, the people of Wu will be perplexed and doubtful about what may happen to them, and they will not be amenable. Therefore it seems the most fitting to leave the late Ruler of Shu here. Next year, in the winter season, he might be removed to the capital. For the present I would recommend that he be created Prince of Fufeng, and granted a sufficient revenue and suitable attendants. His sons also should receive ducal rank. In this way would be demonstrated that favorable treatment follows upon submission. Such a course would inspire fear of the might of Wei and respect for its virtue, and the result will be all that could be desired."        

Reading this memorial, the thought entered the mind of Sima Zhao that Deng Ai was exaggerating his own importance, wherefore he first wrote a private letter and sent it by the hand of Wei Guan to Deng Ai and then caused the Ruler of Wei to issue an edict promoting Deng Ai. The edict ran thus:      

"General Deng Ai has performed a glorious exploit, penetrating deeply into a hostile country and reducing to submission a usurping potentate. This task has been quickly performed: The clouds of war have already rolled away, and peace reigns throughout Ba and Shu.       

"The merits of Deng Ai surpass those of Bai Qi, who subdued the mighty state of Chu, and Han Xin, who conquered the state of Zhao. Deng Ai is created Grand Commander, and we confer upon him a fief of twenty thousand homesteads, and his two sons are ennobled, each with a fief of one thousand homesteads."  

After the edict had been received with full ceremonies, Wei Guan produced the private letter, which said that Deng Ai's proposals would have suitable consideration in due time.

Then said Deng Ai, "A general in the field may decline to obey even the orders of his prince. My commission was to conquer the west. Why are my plans hindered?"   

So he wrote a reply and sent it to the capital by the hand of the envoy. At that time it was common talk at court that Deng Ai intended to rebel; and when Sima Zhao read the letter, his suspicions turned to certainty, and he feared. This was the letter:       

"Deng Ai, General Who Conquers the West, has reduced the chief of the revolt to submission, and must have authority to act according as he sees best in order to settle the early stages of administration of the new territory. To await government orders for every step means long delays. According to the Spring and Autumn Annals a high officer, when abroad, has authority to follow his own judgment for the safety of the Throne and the advantage of the state.       

"Now seeing that Wu is still unsubdued, all interest centers upon this country, and schemes of settlement should not be nullified by strict adherence to rules and formalities. In war advances are made without thought of reputation, retreats without consideration of avoiding punishment. Though I do not possess the fortitude of the ancients, I shall not be deterred from acting for the benefit of the state by craven and selfish fears for my own reputation."        

In his perplexity Sima Zhao turned to Jia Chong for advice.     

Said he, "Deng Ai presumes upon his services to be haughty and imperious. His recalcitrance is very evident. What shall I do?" 

"Why not order Zhong Hui to reduce him to obedience?" replied Jia Chong.

Sima Zhao accepted the suggestion and issued an edict raising Zhong Hui to Minister of the Interior. After this he made Wei Guan the Inspector of the Forces and set Wei Guan over both armies, with special orders to keep a watch upon Deng Ai and guard against any attempt at insubordination.   

The edict sent to Zhong Hui ran as follows:

"Zhong Hui, General Who Conquers the West, against whose might none can stand, before whom no one is strong, whose virtue conquers every city, whose wide net no one escapes, to whom the valiant army of Shu humbly submitted, whose plans never fail, whose every undertaking succeeds, is hereby made Minister of the Interior and raised to the rank of lordship of a fief of ten thousand families. His two sons also have similar rank with a fief of one thousand families."

When this edict reached Zhong Hui, he called in Jiang Wei and said to him, "Deng Ai has been rewarded more richly than I and is the Grand Commander. But Sima Zhao suspects him of rebellion and has ordered Wei Guan and myself to keep him in order. What does my friend Jiang Wei think ought to be done?"   

Jiang Wei replied, "They say Deng Ai's origin was ignoble and in his youth he was a farmer and breeder of cattle. However, he had good luck and has won a great reputation in this expedition. But this is due not to his able plans, but to the good fortune of the state. If you had not been compelled to hold me in check at Saber Pass, he could not have succeeded. Now he wishes the late Ruler of Shu to be created Prince of Fufeng, whereby he hopes to win the goodwill of the people of Shu. But to me it seems that perfidy lies therein. The Duke of Jin suspects him, it is evident."

Zhong Hui complimented him. Jiang Wei continued, "If you will send away your people, I have something to say to you in private."   

When this had been done and they two were alone, Jiang Wei drew a map from his sleeve and spread it before Zhong Hui, saying, "Long ago, before he had left his humble cot. Zhuge Liang gave this to the First Ruler and told him of the riches of Yizhou and how well it was fitted for an independent state. Whereupon Chengdu was seized as a first step towards attaining it. Now that Deng Ai has got to the same point, it is small wonder that he has lost his balance."

Zhong Hui asked many questions about the details of the features of the map, and Jiang Wei explained in full. Toward the end, he asked how Deng Ai could be got rid of.         

"By making use of the Duke of Jin's suspicions," replied Jiang Wei. "Send up a memorial to say that it looks as if Deng Ai really contemplated rebellion. You will receive direct orders to check the revolt."       

So a memorial was sent to Luoyang. It said that Deng Ai aimed at independence, nourished base designs, was making friends with the vanquished, and was about to revolt.   

At this news the court was much disturbed. Then to support his charges, Zhong Hui's soldiers intercepted Deng Ai's letters and rewrote them in arrogant and rebellious terms. Sima Zhao was greatly angered and sent Jia Chong to lead an expedition into the Xie Valley, he ordered Zhong Hui to arrest Deng Ai, and he himself directing a great march under the leadership of the Ruler of Wei, Cao Huang, whom he compelled to go with him.  

Then said Shao Ti, "Zhong Hui's army outnumbers that of Deng Ai by six to one. You need not go. You need only order Zhong Hui to arrest Deng Ai."   

"Have you forgotten?" said Sima Zhao, smiling. "You said Zhong Hui was a danger. I am not really going against Deng Ai, but against the other."       
"I feared lest you had forgotten," said Shao Ti. "I ventured to remind you, but the matter must be kept secret."

The expedition set out.  

By this time Zhong Hui's attitude had aroused Jia Chong's suspicions, and he spoke of it to Sima Zhao, who replied, "I have sent you: Should I have doubts about you, too? However, come to Changan and things will clear up."     

The dispatch of the army under Sima Zhao was reported to Zhong Hui, who wondered what it might mean. He at once called in Jiang Wei to consult about the seizure of Deng Ai.       

Lo! He is victor here, a king must yield;

And there a threatening army takes the field.

The next chapter will relate the plan to arrest Deng Ai.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

"Romance of the Three Kingdoms" (by Luo Guanzhong, Translated by C. H. Brewitt-Taylor)

SGS Characters and Cards in this chapter:

Chapter 117

When Dong Jue, General Who Upholds the State, heard of the invasion of Wei in ten divisions, he brought to the frontier twenty thousand troops to Saber Pass. And when the dust showed an approaching army, Dong Jue thought it wise to go to the Pass lest the coming armies should be enemies to be stopped.   

But Dong Jue found that the newcomers were Jiang Wei, Liao Hua, and Zhang Yi. He let them pass through. Then he gave them the news from the capital, bad news of the deeds of both the Latter Ruler and Huang Hao. His tears fell as he told the tales.  

"But do not grieve," said Jiang Wei. "So long as I live, I will not allow Wei to come and conquer Shu. Now we must defend this pass, and then evolve a strategy."       

They kept good guard at Saber Pass, while they discussed future plans.       

"Though we are holding this pass, yet Chengdu is well-nigh empty of soldiers," said Dong Jue. "If it was attacked, it would go crack!"    

Jiang Wei replied, "The natural defenses of Chengdu are excellent: It is hard to cross over the mountains and climb the steep roads. No one needs fear."         

Soon after this, Zhuge Xu appeared at the pass challenging the defenders. Jiang Wei forthwith placed himself at the head of five thousand troops and went down to meet the Wei army. He gained an easy victory, slaying many of the enemy and taking much spoil in horses and weapons.        

While Jiang Wei went back to the pass, the defeated Zhuge Xu made his way to Zhong Hui's camp, seven miles away, to confess his failure. His general was very angry.  

"My orders to you were to hold Yinping Bridge so as to stop Jiang Wei, and you lost it. Now without any orders you attack and are defeated."   

"Jiang Wei played so many deceitful tricks. He pretended to be going to take Yongzhou, and I thought that was very important, so I sent troops to rescue it. Then he meanly got away. I followed to the pass, but never thought he would come out and defeat my troops."    

Zhuge Xu pleaded thus, but he was sentenced to die.     

Now Wei Guan, Army Inspector, said, "Zhuge Xu is really a subordinate of Deng Ai and, admitting that he is in fault, his punishment should not have been pronounced by you, O Commander."       

But Zhong Hui swaggeringly replied, "I have a command from the Emperor and orders from the Prime Minister to attack Shu. If Deng Ai himself offended, I would behead him."  

However, other leaders interceded for Zhuge Xu, and Zhong Hui did not put him to death, but sent him a caged prisoner to the capital to be judged. The surviving soldiers were added to Zhong Hui's army. 

This insolent speech of Zhong Hui was duly repeated to Deng Ai, who was angry in his turn and said, "His rank and mine are the same. I have held a frontier post for years and sustained many fatigues in the country's service. Who is he that he gives himself such airs?"

His son Deng Zhong endeavored to appease his wrath.   

"Father, if you cannot suffer small things, you may upset the grand policy of the state. Unfriendliness with him may do great harm, so I hope you will bear with him."     

Deng Ai saw his son was right, and said no more; but he nourished anger in his heart. With a small escort he went to call upon his colleague.     

When his coming was announced, Zhong Hui asked his staff, "How many soldiers are following Deng Ai?"   

"He has only some twenty horsemen," they replied.       

Zhong Hui had a large body of guards drawn up about his tent, and then gave orders that his visitor should be led in. Deng Ai dismounted, and the two men saluted each other. But the visitor did not like the look on the faces of his host's guards. He decided to find out what Zhong Hui was thinking.    

"The capture of Hanzhong is a piece of excellent fortune for the state," said Deng Ai. "The capture of Saber Pass can now be accomplished easily."     

"What is your own idea, General?" asked Zhong Hui.     

Deng Ai tried to evade answering the question, admitting he had no good suggestion. But Zhong Hui pressed him to reply.

Finally he said, "In my simple opinion one might proceed by by-roads from the pass through the Yinping Mountains to Deyang in Hanzhong, and thence make a surprise march to Chengdu. Jiang Wei must go to its defense, and you, General, can take the Saber Pass."       

"A very good plan," said Zhong Hui. "You may start forthwith, and I will wait here till I hear news of your success."   

They drank, and Deng Ai took his leave. Zhong Hui went back to his own tent filled with contempt for Deng Ai's plan. which he thought impracticable.  

"They say Deng Ai is able. I think he is of most ordinary capacity," said he to his officers.        

"But why?" said they.    

"Because the by-roads by Yinping Mountains are impassable, nothing but lofty cliffs and steep hills. A hundred defenders at a critical point could cut all communications, and Deng Ai's army would starve to death. I shall go by the direct road, and there is no fear about the result. I shall overcome Shu."    

So he prepared scaling ladders and stone-throwing machines and set himself to besiege Saber Pass.         

Deng Ai went out to the main gate of the court. While mounting, he said to his followers, "What did Zhong Hui think of me?"   

"He looked as though he held a poor opinion of what you had said, General, and disagreed with you, although his words were fair enough." 

"He thinks I cannot take Chengdu. So I shall take it!"    

He was received at his own camp by Shi Zuan and his son Deng Zhong, and a party of others of his generals, and they asked what the conversation had been about.    

"I told Zhong Hui simple truth, but he thinks I am just a common person of no ability to speak of. He regards the capture of Hanzhong as an incomparable feat of arms. Where would he have been if I had not held up Jiang Wei at Tazhong? But I think the capture of Chengdu will beat that of Hanzhong."

That night the camp was broken up, and Deng Ai set his army out upon a long march along the mountainous paths. At twenty miles from Saber Pass they made a camp. The scouts told Zhong Hui of his movement, and Zhong Hui laughed at the attempt.  

From his camp Deng Ai sent a letter to Sima Zhao.        

Then he called his officers to his tent and asked them, saying, "I am going to make a dash for Chengdu while it is still undefended, and success will mean unfading glory for us all. Will you follow me?"

"We will follow you and obey your orders," cried they all.        

So the final dispositions were made. Deng Zhong and three thousand troops went first to improve the road. His troops wore no armor, but they had axes and boring tools. They were to level roads and build bridges. 

Next went thirty thousand troops furnished with dry grain and ropes. At every one hundred miles they were to make a post of three thousand.

In autumn of that year, they left Yinping, and in the tenth month they were in most precipitous country of the Yinping Mountains. They had taken twenty days to travel two hundred and fifty miles. They were in an uninhabited country. After garrisoning the various posts on the way, they had only two thousand soldiers left. Before them stood a range named Heaven Cliffs, which no horse could ascend. Deng Ai climbed up on foot to see his son and the troops with him opening up a road. They were exhausted with fatigue and weeping.   

Deng Ai asked why they were so sad, and his son replied, "We have found an impassable precipice away to the northwest which we cannot get through. All our labor has been in vain."      

Deng Ai said, "We have got over two hundred and fifty miles, and just beyond is Jiangyou. We cannot go back. How can one get tiger cubs except by going into tiger caves? Here we are, and it will be a very great feat to capture Chengdu."        

They all said they would go on. So they came to the precipice. First they threw over their weapons; then the leader wrapped himself in blankets and rolled over the edge; next the generals followed him, also wrapped in blankets. Those who had not blankets were let down by cords round the waist, and others clinging to trees followed one after another till all had descended and the Heaven Cliffs was passed. Then they retook their armor and weapons and went on their way.      

They came across a stone by the roadside. It bore a mysterious inscription, translated literally it read: 

"This stone is a message of Zhuge Liang the Prime Minister: Two fires were just founded; armies pass by here. Two soldiers compete; both soon die."        

Deng Ai was astonished. Presently he bowed before the stone and prayed to the spirit of Zhuge Liang.          

"O Martial Lord, immortal! I grieve that I am not thy worthy disciple."       

The rugged lofty mountain peaks
Of Yinping, pierce the sky,
The somber crane with wearied wing
Can scarcely over them fly.
Intrepid Deng Ai in blankets wrapped
Rolled down the craggy steep,
His feat Zhuge Liang prophesied
By insight wondrous deep.

Having crossed this great range of mountains without discovery, Deng Ai marched forward. Presently he came to a roomy camp, empty and deserted. He was told that while Zhuge Liang lived, a thousand troops had been kept in garrison at this point of danger, but the Latter Ruler had withdrawn them. Deng Ai sighed at the thought.  

He said to his troops, "Now retreat is impossible, there is no road back. Before you lies Jiangyou with stores in abundance. Advance and you live, retreat and you die. You must fight with all your strength."   

"We will fight to the death!" they cried.      

The leader was now afoot, doing double marches with his two thousand troops toward Jiangyou.         

The Commander at Jiangyou was Ma Miao. He heard the East River Land had fallen into the hands of the enemy. Though some thing prepared for defense, yet his post had a wide area to cover and guard, and he trusted Jiang Wei would defend the Saber Pass. So he did not take his military duties very seriously, just maintaining the daily drills and then going home to his wife to cuddle up to the stove and drink.    

His wife was of the Li family. When she heard of the state of things on the frontier, she said to her husband, "If there is so great danger on the borders, how is it you are so unaffected?"      

"The affair is in Jiang Wei's hands and is not my concern," replied he.         

"Nevertheless, you finally have to guard the capital, and that is a heavy responsibility."  

"O, well! The Emperor trusts his favorite Huang Hao entirely and is sunk in vice and pleasure. Disaster is very near. If the Wei armies get here, I shall yield. It is no good taking it seriously." 
 "You call yourself a man! Have you such a disloyal and treacherous heart? Is it nothing to have held office and taken pay for years? How can I bear to look upon your face?"

Ma Miao was too ashamed to attempt to reply. Just then his house servants came to tell him that Deng Ai, with his two thousand troops, had found their way along some road and had already broken into the city. Ma Miao was now frightened and hastily went out to find the leader and offer his formal submission.   

He went to the Town Hall and bowed on the steps, crying, "I have long desired to come over to Wei. Now I yield myself and my army and all the town."
 Deng Ai accepted his surrender and incorporated his army with his own force. He took Ma Miao into his service as guide. 

Then came a servant with the news: "Lady Li has hanged herself!"    

Deng Ai asked why she had done it, and Ma Miao told him. Deng Ai, admiring her rectitude, gave orders for an honorable burial. He also went in person to sacrifice. Everyone extolled her conduct.         

When the Ruler of Shu had wandered from the way,

And the House of Han fell lower,

Heaven sent Deng Ai to smite the land.

Then did a woman show herself most noble,

So noble in conduct,

That no leader equaled her.

As soon as Jiangyou was taken, the posts along the road by which the army had come were withdrawn, and there was a general rendezvous at this point. This done, they marched toward Fucheng.    

General Tian Xu remonstrated, saying, "We have just finished a long and perilous march and are weary and worn out. We ought to repose for a few days to recover."    

Deng Ai angrily replied, "Speed is the one important matter in war. Do not encourage any discontent. I will not have it."  

Tian Xu was sentenced to death. But as many officers interceded for him, he was pardoned.     
 The army pressed on toward Fucheng. As soon as they arrived, the officers yielded as if they thought Deng Ai had fallen from the heavens. Some took the news to the capital, and the Latter Ruler began to feel alarmed. He hastily called for Huang Hao, who at once denied the report.    

"That is just false rumor. The spirits would not deceive Your Majesty," said Huang Hao.

The Latter Ruler summoned the wise woman to the Palace, but the messengers said she had gone no one knew whither.     

And now urgent memorials and letters fell in from every side like a snow storm, and messengers went to and fro in constant streams. The Latter Ruler called a court to discuss the danger, but no one had any plan or suggestion to offer. The courtiers just looked blankly into each other's faces.         

Finally Xi Zheng spoke out, "In this extremity Your Majesty should call in the help of the son of the Martial Lord." 

This son of Zhuge Liang was named Zhuge Zhan. His mother was born of the Huang family and a daughter of Huang Chenyan. She was singularly plain and extraordinarily talented. She had studied everything, even books of strategy and magic. Zhuge Liang in Nanyang had sought to marry her because of her goodness, and she had studied with him for all their lives. She had survived her husband but a short time, and her last words to her son had been "be loyal and filial".      

Zhuge Zhan had been known as a clever lad and had married a daughter of the Latter Ruler, so that he was an Imperial Son-in-Law. His father's rank, Lord of Wuxiang, had descended to him. In the fourth year of Wonderful Sight (AD 261) Zhuge Zhan received the rank of General of the Guard as well. But he had retired when Huang Hao, the eunuch, as first favorite, began to direct state affairs.         

As suggested, the Latter Ruler summoned Zhuge Zhan to court, and he said, weeping, "Deng Ai has defeated Fucheng, and the capital is seriously threatened. You must think of your father and rescue me!" 

"My father and I owe too much to the First Ruler's and Your Majesty's kindness for me to think any sacrifice too great to make for Your Majesty. I pray that you give me command of the troops in the capital, and I will fight a decisive battle."         

So the soldiers, seventy thousand, were placed under Zhuge Zhan's command.      

When he had gathered all together, he said, "Who dares be Leader of the Van?"    

His son, Zhuge Shang, then nineteen, offered himself, saying, "Since my father commands the army, I volunteer to lead the van!"     

Zhuge Shang had studied military books and made himself an adept in the various exercises. So he was appointed, and the army marched to find the enemy.

In the meantime the surrender general, Ma Miao, had given Deng Ai a very complete map of the country showing the whole sixty miles of road to Chengdu. However, Deng Ai was dismayed when he saw the difficulties ahead of him.  

"If they defend the hills in front, I shall fail; for if I am delayed, Jiang Wei will come up, and my army will be in great danger. The army must press on."   

He called Shi Zuan and his son Deng Zhong and said, "Lead one army straight to Mianzhu to keep back any Shu soldiers sent to stop our march. I will follow as soon as I can. But hasten; for if you let the enemy forestall you, I will put you to death."       

They went. Nearing Mianzhu they met the army under Zhuge Zhan. Both sides prepared for battle. The Shu armies adopted the Eight Diagrams formation and presently, after the usual triple roll of drums, Shi Zuan and Deng Zhong saw their opponents' ranks open in the center, and therefrom emerge a light carriage in which sat a figure looking exactly as Zhuge Liang used to look when he appeared on the battlefield. Everybody knew the Daoist robes and the feather fan. The standard bore his name and titles The Han Prime Minister Zhuge Liang.      

The sight was too much for Deng Zhong and Shi Zuan. The cold sweat of terror poured down them, and they stammered out.

"If Zhuge Liang is still alive, that is the end of us!"        

They led their army to flee. The troops of Shu came on, and the army of Wei was driven away in defeat and chased a distance of seven miles. Then the pursuers sighted Deng Ai, and they turned and retired. 

When Deng Ai had camped, he called the two leaders before him and reproached them for retreating without fighting.      

"We saw Zhuge Liang leading the enemy," said Deng Zhong, "So we ran away."   

"Why should we fear, even if they bring Zhuge Liang to life again? You ran away without cause, and we have lost. You ought both to be put to death."    

However, they did not die, for their fellows pleaded for them, and Deng Ai's wrath was mollified.         

Then the scouts came in to say: "The leader of the army is a son of Zhuge Liang, Zhuge Zhan. The Van Leader is Zhuge Zhan's son, Zhuge Shang. They had set up on the carriage the old wooden image of the late strategist."     

Deng Ai, however, said to Deng Zhong and Shi Zuan, "This is the critical stage. If you lose the next battle, you will certainly lose your lives with it!"     

At the head of ten thousand troops, they went out to battle once more. This time they met the vanguard led by Zhuge Shang, who rode out alone, boldly offering to repulse the leaders of Wei. At Zhuge Zhan's signal the two wings advanced and threw themselves against the Wei line. The center portion of the Wei line met them, and the battle went to and fro many times, till at length the force of Wei, after great losses, had to give way. Both Deng Zhong and Shi Zuan being badly wounded, they fled and the army of Shu pursued and drove the invaders into their camp.

Shi Zuan and Deng Zhong had to acknowledge a new defeat, but, when Deng Ai saw both were severely wounded, he forbore to blame them or decree any penalty.    

To his officers Deng Ai said, "This Zhuge Zhan well continues the paternal tradition. Twice they have beaten us and slain great numbers. We must defeat them, and that quickly, or we are lost."         

Then Military Inspector Qiu Ben said, "Why not persuade their leader with a letter?"      

Deng Ai agreed and wrote a letter, which he sent by the hand of a messenger. The warden of the Shu camp gate led the messenger in to see Zhuge Zhan, who opened the letter and read: 

"Deng Ai, General Who Conquers the West, writes to Zhuge Zhan, General of the Guard and Leader of the army in the field.

"Now having carefully observed all the talents of the time, I see not one of them is equal to your most honored father. From the moment of his emergence from his retreat, he said that the country was to be in tripod division. He conquered Jingzhou and Yizhou and Hanzhong and thus established a position. Few have been his equal in all history. He made six expeditions from Qishan, and, if he failed, it was not that he lacked skill---it was the will of Heaven.

"But now this Latter Ruler is dull and weak, and his kingly aura is already exhausted. I have a command from the Son of Heaven to smite Shu with severity, and I already possess the land. Your capital must quickly fall. Why then do you not bow to the will of Heaven and fall in with the desires of people by acting rightly and coming over to our side? I will obtain the rank of Prince of Langye for you, whereby your ancestors will be rendered illustrious. These are no vain words if happily you will consider them."        
 The letter made Zhuge Zhan furiously angry. He tore it to fragments and ordered the bearer thereof to be put to death immediately. He also ordered the escort to bear the head of the messenger to the camp of Wei and lay it before Deng Ai.
 Deng Ai was very angry at this insult and wished to go forth at once to battle. But Qiu Ben dissuaded him.     
 "Do not go out to battle," said he. "Rather overcome him by some unexpected stroke."   
 So Deng Ai laid his plans. He sent Wang Qi, Governor of Tianshui, and Qian Hong, Governor of Longxi, to lie in wait in the rear while he led the main body.    
 Zhuge Zhan happened to be close at hand seeking battle. When he heard the enemy was near, he led out his army eagerly and rushed into the midst of the invaders. Then Deng Ai fled as though worsted, so luring on Zhuge Zhan. But when the pursuit had lasted some time, the pursuers were attacked by those who lay in wait, and the Shu troops were defeated. They ran away into Mianzhu.         
 Therefore Deng Ai besieged Mianzhu, and the troops of Wei shouted about the city and watched the ramparts, thus keeping the defenders close shut in as if held in an iron barrel.  
 Zhuge Zhan was desperate, seeing no way of escape without help from outside. Wherefore he wrote a letter to East Wu begging for assistance, and he gave this letter to Peng He to bear through the besiegers.        
 Peng He fought his way through and reached Wu, where he saw the Ruler of Wu, Sun Xiu. And he presented the letter showing the wretched plight of Zhuge Zhan and his urgent need. 
 Then the Ruler of Wu assembled his officers and said to them, "The land of Shu being in danger, I cannot sit and look on unconcerned." 
 He therefore decided to send fifty thousand troops, over whom he set the Veteran General Ding Feng, with two able assistants---Sun Yin and Ding Fung. Having received his edict, Ding Feng sent away his commanders with twenty thousand troops to Mianzhu, and he himself went with thirty thousand troops toward Shouchun. The army marched in three divisions.     
 In the city of Mianzhu, Zhuge Zhan waited for the rescue which never came.       
 Weary of the hopeless delay, he said to his generals, "This long defense is useless. I will fight!"
 Leaving his son Zhuge Shang and Chair of the Secretariat Zhang Zun---Zhang Fei's grandson---in the city, Zhuge Zhan put on his armor and led out three thousand troops through three gates to fight in the open. Seeing the defenders making a sortie, Deng Ai drew off and Zhuge Zhan pursued him vigorously, thinking Deng Ai really fled before his force. But there was an ambush, and falling therein he was quickly surrounded as is the kernel of a nut by the shell. In vain he thrust right and shoved left, he only lost his troops in the raining arrows and bolts. The troops of Wei poured in more flights of arrows, so that his army were all shattered. Before long, Zhuge Zhan was wounded and fell.      
 "I am done," cried he. "But in my death I will do my duty!" He drew his sword and slew himself.         
 From the city walls his son Zhuge Shang saw the death of his father. Girding on his armor he made to go out to fight.  

But Zhang Zun told him, "Young general, do not go out immediately!"      

Cried Zhuge Shang, "My father and I and all our family have received favors from the state. My father has died in battle against our enemies, and can I live?"    

He whipped his horse and dashed out into the thick of the fight, where he died. A poem has been written extolling the conduct of both father and son.      

In skill he was found wanting, not in loyalty,

But the Lord's word had gone forth,

That the Ruler of Shu was to be cut off,

Noble were Zhuge Liang's descendants.

In commiseration of their loyalty, Deng Ai had both father and son buried fittingly. Then he began attacking the city vigorously. Zhang Zun, Huang Chong, and Li Qiu, the defenders, however, held the city desperately, but to no avail for their numbers being small, and the three leaders were slain. This was the end of the defense, and Deng Ai then entered as conqueror. Having rewarded his army, he set out for Chengdu.  

The closing days of the Latter Ruler were

As had been those of Liu Zhang.

The next chapter will tell of the defense of Chengdu.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

"Romance of the Three Kingdoms" (by Luo Guanzhong, Translated by C. H. Brewitt-Taylor)

SGS Characters and Cards in this chapter:

Chapter 116

The words whispered in the ear of Shao Ti proved Sima Zhao's subtlety.      

Said Sima Zhao, "This morning the officers all maintained that Shu should not be attacked, because they are timid. If I let them lead the army, they would surely be defeated. You saw Zhong Hui was set upon his plan, and he is not afraid. Shu must therefore be beaten, and then the Shu people's hearts will be torn. Beaten leaders cannot boast, and the officers of a broken state are no fit guardians of its welfare. When Zhong Hui turns against us, the people of Shu cannot support him. Further, our troops being victors, they will wish to return home and will not follow their leader into revolt. Hence there is nothing to be feared. I know this, as you do, but it must remain our secret."         

Shao Ti showed his admiration for Sima Zhao.     

In his camp, just prior to his march, Zhong Hui assembled his officers, among them were Army Inspector Wei Guan, Assistant General Hu Lie, Generals Tian Xu, Tian Zhang, Yuan Xing, Qiu Jian, Xiahou Xian, Wang Mai, Huangfu Kai, Gou Ai, and others, some eighty of them.   

"Firstly I want a Leader of the Van," said Zhong Hui. "He must be skilled in making roads and repairing bridges." 

"I will take that post," said a voice, and the speaker was Xu Yi, son of the Tiger Leader Xu Chu.        

"Nobody is fitter!" cried all present.   

"You shall have the seal," said Zhong Hui. "You are lithe and strong and have the renown of your father to maintain. Beside, all your colleagues recommend you. Your force shall be five thousand of cavalry and a thousand of footmen. You are to march into Hanzhong in three divisions, the center you will lead through the Xie Valley, the other two passing through the Luo and Ziwu Valleys. You must level and repair the roads, put the bridges in order, bore tunnels and break away rocks. Use all diligence, for any delay will entail punishment."  

Xu Yi was told to set out immediately, and his chief would follow with one hundred thousand troops.        

In West Valley Land, as soon as Deng Ai received his orders to attack Shu, he sent Sima Wang to keep the Qiangs in check. Next he summoned Zhuge Xu, Imperial Protector of Yongzhou, Wang Qi, Governor of Tianshui, Qian Hong, Governor of Longxi, and Yang Xin, Governor of Jincheng, and soon soldiers gathered in the West Valley Land like clouds.

One night Deng Ai dreamed a dream wherein he was climbing a lofty mountain on the way into Hanzhong. Suddenly a spring of water gushed out at his feet and boiled up with great force so that he was alarmed.    

He awoke all in a sweat and did not sleep again, but sat awaiting the dawn. At daybreak he summoned his guard Shao Yuan, who was skilled in the Book of Changes, told him the dream and asked the interpretation.  

Shao Yuan replied, "According to the book, 'water on a mountain' signifies the diagram Jian, whereunder we find that the southwest augurs well, but the northeast is unpropitious. Confucius said of Jian that it meant advantage in the southwest, that is, success, but the northeast spelt failure, that is, there was no road. In this expedition, General, you will overcome Shu, but you will not have a road to return."       

Deng Ai listened, growing more and more sad as the interpretation of his dream was unfolded. 

Just then came dispatches from Zhong Hui asking him to advance into Hanzhong together. Deng Ai at once sent Zhuge Xu with fifteen thousand troops to cut off Jiang Wei's retreat; and Wang Qi was to lead fifteen thousand troops to attack Tazhong from the left; Qian Hong was to march fifteen thousand troops to attack Tazhong from the right; and Yang Xin with fifteen thousand troops was to block Jiang Wei at Gansong. Deng Ai took command of a force to go to and fro and reinforce whatever body needed help. 

Meanwhile in the camp of Zhong Hui, all the officials came out to see him depart. It was a grand sight, the gay banners shutting out the sun, breastplates and helmets glittering. The soldiers were fit and the horses in good condition. They all felicitated the leader.     

All save one; for Adviser Liu Shi was silent. He smiled grimly.

Then Grand Commander Wang Xiang made his way through the crowd and said, "Do you think these two---Zhong Hui and Deng Ai---will overcome Shu?"      

Said Liu Shi, sighing, "With such brave soldiers and bold leaders and their talents, they will overcome Shu certainly. Only I think neither will ever come back."    

"Why do you say that?" 

But Liu Shi did not reply; he only smiled. And the question was not repeated.      

The armies of Wei were on the march when Jiang Wei heard of the intended attack. He at once sent up a memorial:   
Your Majesty need to make defensive arrangements by commanding Zhang Yi, Left Commander of the Flying Cavalry, to guard the Yangping Pass, and Liao Hua, Right Commander of the Flying Cavalry, to guard the Yinping Bridge in Yinping. These two places are the most important points upon which depend the security of Hanzhong. Send also to engage the help of Wu. I, thy humble servant, shall gather soldiers in Tazhong ready for the march."  

That year in Shu the reign-style had been changed from Wonderful Sight, the fifth year, to Joyful Prosperity, the first year (AD 263). When the memorial of Jiang Wei came to the Latter Ruler, it found him as usual amusing himself with his favorite Huang Hao.     

He read the document and said to the eunuch, "Here Jiang Wei says that the Wei armies under Deng Ai and Zhong Hui are on the way against us. What shall we do?"        

"There is nothing of the sort. Jiang Wei only wants to get a name for himself, and so he says this. Your Majesty need feel no alarm, for we can find out the truth from a certain wise woman I know. She is a real prophetess. May I call her?"      

The Latter Ruler consented, and a room was fitted up for the seance. They prepared therein incense, flowers, paper, candles, sacrificial articles and so on, and then Huang Hao went with a chariot to beg the wise woman to attend upon the Latter Ruler.

She came and was seated on the Dragon Couch. After the Latter Ruler had kindled the incense and repeated the prayer, the wise woman suddenly let down her hair, dropped her slippers, and capered about barefoot. After several rounds of this, she coiled herself up on a table. 

Huang Hao then said, "The spirit has now descended. Send everyone away and pray to her."     

So the attendants were dismissed, and the Latter Ruler entreated the wise woman.

Suddenly she cried out, "I am the guardian spirit of the West River Land. Your Majesty, rejoices in tranquillity; why do you inquire about other matters? Within a few years the land of Wei shall come under you, wherefore you need not be sorrowful."  

She then fell to the ground as in a swoon, and it was some time before she revived. The Latter Ruler was well satisfied with her prophesy and gave her large presents. Further, he thereafter believed all she told him. The immediate result was that Jiang Wei's memorial remained unanswered; and as the Latter Ruler was wholly given to pleasure, it was easy for Huang Hao to intercept all urgent memorials from the commander.        

Meanwhile Zhong Hui was hastening toward Hanzhong. The Van Leader Xu Yi was anxious to perform some startling exploit, and so he led his force to Nanzheng.   

He said to his officers, "If we can take this pass, then we can march directly into Hanzhong. The defense is weak."  

A dash was made for the fort, each one vying with the rest to be first. But the Commander of Nanzheng was Lu Xu, and he had had early information of the coming of his enemies. So on both sides of the bridge he posted soldiers armed with multiple bows and crossbows. As soon as the attacking force appeared, the signal was given by a clapper and a terrific discharge of arrows and bolts opened. Many troops of Wei fell, and the army of Xu Yi was defeated. 

Xu Yi returned and reported his misfortune. Zhong Hui himself went with a hundred armored horsemen to see the conditions. Again the machine bows let fly clouds of missiles, and Zhong Hui turned to flee.       

Lu Xu led out five hundred troops to pursue. As Zhong Hui crossed the bridge at a gallop, the roadway gave, and his horse's hoof went through so that he was nearly thrown. The horse could not free its hoof, and Zhong Hui slipped from his back and fled on foot. As he ran down the slope of the bridge, Lu Xu came at him with a spear, but one of Zhong Hui's followers, Xun Kai by name, shot an arrow at Lu Xu and brought him to the earth.     

Seeing this lucky hit, Zhong Hui turned back and signaled to his force to make an attack. They came on with a dash, the defenders were afraid to shoot, as their own troops were mingled with the enemy, and soon Zhong Hui crushed the defense and possessed the pass. The defenders scattered.         

The pass being captured, Xun Kai was well rewarded for the shot that had saved his general's life. He was promoted to Assistant General and received presents of a horse and a suit of armor.       

Xu Yi was called to the tent, and Zhong Hui blamed him for the lack of care in his task, saying, "You were appointed Leader of the Van to see that the roads were put in repair, and your special duty was to see that the bridges were in good condition. Yet on the bridge just now my horse's hoof was caught, and I nearly fell. Happily Xun Kai was by, or I had been slain. You have been disobedient and must bear the penalty."       

The delinquent was sentenced to death.      

The other generals tried to beg him off, pleading, "His father is Xu Chu who had rendered good services to the state!"     

"How can discipline be maintained if the laws are not enforced?" said Zhong Hui. 

The sentence was carried out, and the unhappy Xu Yi's head was exposed as a warning. This severity put fear into the hearts of the officers.      

On the side of Shu, Wang Han commanded at Yuecheng, and Jiang Bin was in Hancheng. As the enemy came in great force, they dared not go out to meet them, but stood on the defensive with the gates of the cities closed.    

Zhong Hui issued an order, "Speed is the soul of war: No halts."        

Li Du was ordered to lay siege to Yuecheng, and Xun Kai was to surround Hancheng. The main army under Zhong Hui would capture the Yangping Pass.        

The Shu General Fu Qian commanded at the pass. He discussed plans with Jiang Shu, his second in command, and Jiang Shu was wholly in favor of defense, saying, "The enemy is too strong to think of any other course."       

"I do not agree," replied Fu Qian. "They are now fatigued with marching, and we need not fear them. Unless we go out and attack, Yuecheng and Hancheng will fall."        

Jiang Shu made no reply. Soon the enemy arrived, and both officers went up to the wall and looked out. 

As soon as Zhong Hui saw them, he shouted, "We have here a host of one hundred thousand. If you yield, you shall have higher rank than you hold now. But if you persist in holding out then, when we take the pass, you shall all perish. Jewels and pebbles will share the same destruction!"         

This threat angered Fu Qian. He bade Jiang Shu guard the walls, and he went down to give battle, taking three thousand troops. He attacked, and Zhong Hui retreated. Fu Qian pursued. But soon the army of Wei closed up their ranks and counterattacked. Fu Qian turned to retire. But when he reached his own defenses, he saw they flew the flags of Wei---the banners of Shu had gone.      

"I have yielded!" cried Jiang Shu from the ramparts.       

Fu Qian shouted angrily, "Ungrateful and treacherous rogue! How can you ever face the world again?"       

But that did no good. Fu Qian turned to go once more into the battle. He was soon surrounded. He fought desperately, but could not win clear. His troops fell one by one, and when they were reduced to one out of ten, he cried, "Alive I have been a servant of Shu; dead I will be one of their spirits!"         

Fu Qian forced his way into the thickest of the fight. Then his steed fell, and as he was grievously wounded, he put an end to his own life.    

The loyalty Fu Qian showed in stressful days
Won him a thousand autumns' noble praise;
The base Jiang Shu lived on, a life disgraced,
One would prefer the death that Fu Qian faced.

With the Yangping Pass falling into the hands of Zhong Hui were great booty of grain and weapons. He feasted the army, and that night they rested in the city of Yangan. However, the night was disturbed by sounds as of people shouting, so that Zhong Hui got up and went out thinking there must be an attack. But the sounds ceased, and he returned to his couch. However, he and his army could not sleep.     

Next night the same thing happened, shoutings in the southwest. As soon as day dawned scouts went out to search, but they came back to say they had gone three miles and found no sign of any Shu soldier. Zhong Hui did not feel satisfied, so he took a hundred cavalrymen and rode in the same direction to explore.        

Presently they happened upon a hill of sinister aspect overhung by angry clouds, while the summit was wreathed in mist.     

"What hill is that?" asked Zhong Hui, pulling up to question the guides.     

"It is known as the Dingjun Mountain," was the reply. "It is where Xiahou Yuan met his death."         

This did not sound cheering at all, and Zhong Hui turned back to camp greatly depressed. Rounding the curve of a hill, he came full into a violent gust of wind and there suddenly appeared a large body of horse coming down the wind as if to attack.      

The whole party galloped off panic-stricken, Zhong Hui leading the way. Many generals fell from their steeds. Yet when they arrived at the pass, not a man was missing, although there were many with bruises and cuts from the falls and many had lost helmets. Everyone had seen phantom horsemen, who did no harm when they came near, but melted away in the wind.   

Zhong Hui called the surrendered General Jiang Shu and asked, "Is there any temple to any supernatural being on the Dingjun Mountain?"     

"No," replied he, "there is nothing but the tomb of Zhuge Liang."     

"Then this must have been a manifestation of Zhuge Liang," said Zhong Hui. "I ought to sacrifice to him."      

So he prepared presents and slew an ox and offered sacrifice at the tomb, and when the sacrifice had been completed, the wind calmed, and the dark clouds dispersed. There followed a cool breeze and a gentle shower, and the sky cleared. Pleased with the evidence of the acceptance of their offerings, the sacrificial party returned to camp.    

That night Zhong Hui fell asleep in his tent with his head resting on a small table. Suddenly a cool breeze began to blow, and he saw a figure approaching clad in Daoist garb, turban, feather fan, white robe of Daoist cut bound with a black girdle. The countenance of the figure was as refined as jade, the lips a deep red and the eyes clear. The figure moved with the calm serenity of a god.   

"Who are you, Sir?" asked Zhong Hui, rising.       

"Out of gratitude for your kindly visit this morning, I would make a communication. Though the Hans have declined and the mandate of the Eternal cannot be disobeyed, yet the people of the west, exposed to the inevitable miseries of war, are to be pitied. After you have passed the frontier, do not slay ruthlessly."    

Then the figure disappeared with a flick of the sleeves of its robe, nor would it stay to answer any questions.    

Zhong Hui awoke and knew that he had been dreaming, but he felt that the spirit of Zhuge Liang the Martial Lord had visited him, and he was astonished.

He issued an order that the leading division of his army should bear a white flag with six words plainly written thereon, Secure the state, comfort the people, so that all might know that no violence was to be feared. If anyone was slain wantonly, then the offender should pay with his own life. This tender care was greatly appreciated, so that the invaders were welcomed in every step. Zhong Hui soothed the people, and they suffered no injury.      

Those phantom armies circling in the gleam

Moved Zhong Hui to sacrifice at Zhuge Liang's tomb;

For the Lius had Zhuge Liang wrought unto the end,

Though dead, he would the Han people still defend.

Jiang Wei at Tazhong heard of the invasion and wrote to his three generals---Zhang Yi, Liao Hua, and Dong Jue---to march against the enemy, while he prepared to repulse them if they came to his station.       

Soon they came, and he went out to encounter them. Their leader was Wang Qi, Governor of Tianshui.    

When near enough, Wang Qi shouted, "Our forces are numbered by millions, our generals by thousands. Two hundred thousand are marching against you, and Chengdu has already fallen. In spite of this you do not yield, wherefore it is evident you do not recognize the divine command!"         

Jiang Wei cut short this tirade by galloping out with his spear set. Wang Qi stood three bouts and then fled. Jiang Wei pursued, but seven miles away he met a cohort drawn up across the road. On the banner he read Qian Hong, Governor of Longxi.        

"Dead rat! No match for me," said Jiang Wei, smiling.   

Despising this antagonist, he led his army straight on, and the enemy fell back. He drove them before him for three more miles, and then came upon Deng Ai. A battle at once began, and the lust of battle held out in the breast of Jiang Wei for a score of bouts. But neither could overbear the other. Then in the Shu rear arose the clang of gongs and other signs of coming foes.       

Jiang Wei retired the way he had come, and presently one came to report: "The Governor of Jincheng, Yang Xin, has destroyed the camps at Gansong."      

This was evil tidings. He bade his generals keep his own standard flying and hold Deng Ai while he went to try to recover the camps. On the way he met Yang Xin, but Yang Xin had no stomach for a fight with Jiang Wei and made for the hills. Jiang Wei followed till he came to a precipice down which the enemy were hurling boulders and logs of wood so that he could not pass.         

Jiang Wei turned to go back to the battlefield he had just left, but on the way he met the defeated Shu army, for Deng Ai had crushed his generals. Jiang Wei joined them but was surrounded by the Wei forces. Presently he got clear with a sudden rush and hastened to the great camp.     

Next came the news: "Zhong Hui has defeated the Yangping Pass; Jiang Shu has surrendered, while Fu Qian has fallen in the field. Hanzhong is now in the possession of Wei. Wang Han of Yuecheng and Jiang Bin of Hancheng has also opened their gates and yielded to the invaders at the loss of Hanzhong. Hu Ji has gone to Chengdu for help."  

This greatly troubled Jiang Wei, so he broke camp and set out for Hanzhong. That night the Shu army reached the Frontier River Pass. An army under Yang Xin barred his way, and again Jiang Wei was forced to fight. He rode out in a great rage, and as Yang Xin fled, he shot at him thrice, but his arrows missed.    

Throwing aside his bow, he gripped his spear and set off in pursuit, but his horse tripped and fell, and Jiang Wei lay on the ground. Yang Xin turned to slay his enemy now that he was on foot, but Jiang Wei thrust Yang Xin's horse in the head. Other Wei troops came up rescued Yang Xin.    

Mounting another steed of his follower, Jiang Wei was just setting out again in pursuit when they reported that Deng Ai was coming against his rear. Realizing that he could not cope with this new force, Jiang Wei collected his troops in order to retreat into Hanzhong.         

However, the scouts reported: "Zhuge Xu, Imperial Protector of Yongzhou, is holding Yinping Bridge, our retreat path."

So Jiang Wei halted and made a camp in the mountains. Advance and retreat seemed equally impossible. 

He cried in anguish, "Heaven is destroying me!"   

Then said Ning Sui, one of his generals, "If our enemies are blocking Yinping Bridge, they can only have left a weak force in Yongzhou. We can make believe to be going thither through the Konghan Valley and so force them to abandon the bridge in order to protect the city. When the bridge is clear, you can make a dash for Saber Pass and plan for a recapture of Hanzhong."        

This plan seemed to promise success, so Jiang Wei ordered them to march into the Konghan Valley, making as though they would go to Yongzhou.   

When Zhuge Xu, who was at the Yinping Bridge, heard this, he said in great shock, "Yongzhou is my own city, and headquarters of the expedition. If it would be lost, I would be punished!"       

So Zhuge Xu set off to its relief by the south road. He left only a small force at the bridge.       

Jiang Wei marched along the north road for ten miles till he guessed that Zhuge Xu had abandoned the bridge, when he reversed his course, making the rearguard the van. He dispersed the small force left at the bridge head and burned their camp. Zhuge Xu, as he marched, saw the flames, and he turned back to the bridge, but he arrived too late. The army of Shu had already crossed, and he dared not pursue.       

Soon after Jiang Wei crossed the bridge, he saw another force, but this was led by his own generals, Liao Hua and Zhang Yi.      

They told him, "The Latter Ruler, firm in his faith in a wise woman, would not send help to defend the frontiers. We heard Hanzhong was threatened, and thus marched there to its rescue, but then Zhong Hui had taken the Yangping Pass. We also heard you were surrounded here, so we came to your help."        

The two armies amalgamated and marched together.      

Liao Hua said, "We are attacked all round, and the grain transportation is blocked. It seems to me wisest to retire on the Saber Pass and plan other designs."         

But Jiang Wei was doubtful. Then they heard that Deng Ai and Zhong Hui were approaching in ten divisions.         

Jiang Wei was disposed to stand, but Liao Hua said, "This country of White Water is laced with by-roads and is too narrow and difficult to fight in with any hope of success. It would be better to retreat to the Saber Pass. If we loss that pass, all paths will be closed to us." 

At last Jiang Wei consented, and the march began. But as they neared the pass, they heard drums rolling and saw flags fluttering, which told them that the pass was held.      

Hanzhong, that strong defense, is lost;

And storm clouds gather round Saber Pass.

What force was at the pass will be told in the next chapter.

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