Chapter 295 – Towards Yingshang
The Wolf Cavalry finally escaped with the sacrifice of their own blood. They were not cold-blooded people that were ungrateful. They were wolves. They only showed tears in their eyes and would use these tears for vengeance.
“Break out! Break out!” The remaining few thousand whipped their horses and rode out. One hundred men soon led the way with none daring to stop them.
Liu Bei’s subordinates were infantries. The White Eared soldiers even wore heavy armor. It was not possible for them to chase horses. The Xiliang Cavalry were stunned by the spirit of those that sacrificed themselves. The Xiliang Cavalry were strong. They were ruthless not only to their enemies but also to their own men. Those that died were friends. Those that did not die were looked own on. They would not want to go and sacrifice themselves. The Xiliang Cavalry were stunned, allowing the Wolf Cavalry to escape.
Lu Bu took the Wolf Cavalry far away and looked back to see that the soldiers were no longer pursuing them. This allowed the rest of the wolves to rest and lick their wounds for a while. Lu Bu licked his wounds and bitterly found out that the Wolf Cavalry initially numbered 5,000. He lost 2,762 and now, less than 3,000 remained. The Wolf Cavalry had suffered serious losses. Even Cao Cao’s attack on the Central Plains was not so bad.
“Damn!” Lu Bu gritted his teeth. He did not even realize that his fingers dug into his palms, tearing his skin.
“Milord. What now?” Zhang Pan is dead. The remaining soldiers went up to Lu Bu and asked.
“Make a detour. Go to Shucheng!” Lu Bu also knew that the Wolf Cavalry could no longer fight. After losing more than half of their strength, they would not be able to do much even if they were dispatched. All they could do was return to Shucheng to rest.
“Milord. We are going back?” The soldiers were puzzled. They set out to look for Lu Lingqi but lost more than half their strength without finding her. They wondered if they would really just go back like this.
“We are not searching anymore. I believe Heaven would help her!” Lu Bu felt really bitter as he said this. Saying that Lu Bu was not worried about his daughter would be a lie. If he was not worried, he would not have taken out the Wolf Cavalry. However, having his brothers that fought side by side with him die just to find his daughter was not something Lu Bu wants to do.
A wolf would need to lick their wounds. A wolf would need to have a vengeful heart. Now was the time to rest at Shucheng. Lu Bu swore to avenge his fallen brothers when he returns. ‘Liu Bei. Zhang Xiu. Just you wait!’
Lu Bu and the Wolf Cavalry returned back to where they came from after they rested.
“Kill! Kill!” Yuzhou, Yingshang. Liu Mang had now hardened his heart to quickly capture Yingshang. His sixteen trebuchets continued to operate day and night, breaking away the walls. The piled up stones quickly brought Yingshang onto the verge of ruins. The stones were also quickly used up. After they were used up, he would need to collect more from Yingshang.
Liu Mang did not feel good. Mi Fang who was inside Yingshang felt even worse. He had 5,000 defenders and could only defend up until now thanks to the help of the citizens. The people had went up the walls to help Mi Fang push back the enemy. They also helped send food inside the city and boil water for them. To the people of Yuzhou, Liu Bei was already their Lord. Anyone fighting against Liu Bei were evil. Liu Bei was someone who relied on public emotion to rule.
Liu Bei’s greatest elites were not the White Eared soldiers but himself and Jiang Yong. The two of them were very good at capturing people’s hearts. To the public, their faces were gold and their enemies were splashed with dirty water. The people from Yuzhou were put together with the people of Xuzhou. The people of Xuzhou were completely brainwashed. Only Liu Bei’s Army was the royal army. Everyone else were bandits. Liu Bei also love giving his enemies the reputation of massacring people in an inhabitant city.
Although there were warlords that love doing that, they only did it to scare the people. For example, Cao Cao had killed people in Xuzhou only to intimidate them. A total of three small cities added up to about ten thousand citizens. Thousands had fled to escape. Cao Cao only killed a few of the old and sick which totaled up to less than a thousand people. However, he was made out to be a ruthless butcher by Liu Bei that dyed the river and lake blood red.
With propaganda being spread every day, Cao Cao would become a villain even if he wasn’t one. Repeated false reports led the people astray. So when Cao Cao attack Xuzhou, every citizen would come out and help to defend. Finally, Cao cao was left without a choice. After all, he was already known as a butcher. He might as well turn it into a fact. That was why when Cao Cao attacked Xuzhou, he dragged out all the citizens that helped the defenders. Naturally, Cao Cao would not be able to find them all. However, he was someone who preferred to wrongly kill three thousand as opposed to letting one hundred go free. And so, his name was blackened in Xuzhou. Liu Bei would also not forget about slandering Cao Cao after being chased out of Xuzhou. Now, Liu Mang was receiving the same treatment.
The group have been brainwashed. They believed that they would all be killed once the city was captured. Even if someone were to explain things to them, they would not understand.
Since they would not understand, they could only be categorized together with the defenders by Liu Mang.
“The city is breached!” The defenders and the citizens were finally unable to hold out. The walls had been bombarded by the trebuchets and there were no more places with good foundation. Many were injured or crushed to death. Those hit by the rocks were unlikely to survive. Even if they were lucky enough to survive, they would become disabled. If it was not because of Liu Bei’s popularity, they would only have lasted for half a day. There wouldn’t be anybody brave enough to stand at the front.
Mi Fang had a total of 5,000 defenders. 3,000 perished on the first day itself. If the citizens did not help, they would have already been finished.
After two days, Liu Mang finally attacked the city. He was at Yingshui a large country at Yuzhou, no smaller than the south. Beside it was the Huaihe River. Another thing making it prosperous was it’s a trading place for Yanzhou, Yuzhou, Yangzhou and Xuzhou. During its prosperous moments, there were hundreds and thousands of merchants. Merchant ships come and go.
However, on that day, the gates of the ancient city opened its door under the attacks of Liu Mang and thousands of elite soldiers.
“All units. Enter the city!” Liu Mang waved his hand and issued the order. The drawbridge had already been lowered. The fighting was now done at the streets. There was no huge resistance. The Black Flag army initially did not participate in the siege as their armors were too heavy. Now that the drawbridge was lowered and the door was open, they were the first to rush to battle.
Liu Mang took the Black Flag army and rushed to the storehouse. Fortunately, the place had not yet been destroyed by Mi Fang. Perhaps the city was broken in too quickly or that Mi Fang did not expect themselves to be unable to hold out for two days but they did not set the storehouse on fire. If they had burned it, Liu mang would be in big trouble. The food he obtained from Anfeng had all been sent to Shouchun. The leftover provisions was only enough to last for half a month. If there had been a fire, everyone would really go hungry.
Liu Mang ordered the soldiers to guard the storehouse and walked in. There were still a few officials who haven’t had the time to escape. Liu Mang randomly grabbed one of the people who were responsible for it and learned that there were plenty of provisions here. This caused Liu Mang to laugh out loud. The entire Yangzhou was lacking in provisions. Just the ones here was enough to help Shouchun last for a while.
“Ziyang and the others should have already captured Ruyin.” Ruyin was not much smaller than Yingshang. The provisions in it should also be just as much. These two cities added up together was enough for Liu Mang to go to Runan. Liu Mang would naturally be happy. After capturing Runan, eliminated Liu Bei’s escape road. Runan was also Liu Bei’s nest. Provisions were all sent from Runan. Once captured, Liu Bei would be left without provisions and would be unable to fight. His luck would change. Even if Shouchun was captured, the million of citizens that made Liu Mang receive a headache would now be Liu Bei’s problem. As Liu Bei had a righteous mouth, he cannot make the hungry citizens starve. He would be left with two choices. Take out his own provisions for the people or let them starve and revolt. Liu Bei’s reputation would also be destroyed. Liu Mang really wanted to see this happening.
While Liu Mang was thinking, Huang Zhong arrived. Huang Zhong had been commanded to capture the city in one day. Counting the time of attack from the previous day until now, it was just right. It was just about an entire day.
“Little Lord. This general is glad not to show disgrace and have captured Yingshang.” Huang Zhong knelt in front of Liu Mang. Behind him were a few of the Urban Army soldiers a young tied up general. “We have also arrested this person.”
“Oh. Isn’t this General Mi Fang?” Liu Mang looked at the captured general as though he saw an old acquaintance.
“Hmph. Do with me as you wish!“ Mi Fang was strong willed. When he saw Liu Mang, he refused to kneel and looked away. However, he was a prisoner and had no choice. Two of the soldiers slammed him at the back of his knee, forcing him to kneel.
“Kill you? Haha. I feel begrudged to kill you.” Liu Mang wanted Mi Fang’s brother Mi Zhu to join Lu Bu’s Army. With such a prominent merchant, Liu Mang would be able to give his ideas to Mi Zhu. Besides that, the White Horse only numbered around 200. Liu Mang agreed with Zhao Yun that there was a need to buy horses and increase that number to 5,000. Now, the only place one could buy horses from was Liaodong. Once the ships and the shipyard were complete, Liu Mang would be ready to send people to Liaodong. A merchant who knows how to trade would be indispensable to Liu Mang.
“Han Sheng. Where did you find him?” Liu Mang was puzzled. Mi Fang was not an idiot. After seeing that the city was about to fall, where else would he go except flee? Liu Mang does not have any cavalries. He only had infantries and heavy infantries. As long as there were a few horses, they would be able to escape from the other side of the gates. Instead, Mi Fang was now caught alive.
“Little Lord. This general had also expected him to be long gone after climbing the walls. Unfortunately, the man was full of affection and was taking away a woman in a carriage. That carriage was intercepted before it reached the gates!” Huang Zhong explained.
“Full of affection?” Liu Mang had never heard of Mi Fang. It would not be right even if it was his wife. If Mi Fang was such a person, why would he betray Liu Bei and go to Sun Quan in the original timeline? Even though Liu Bei did not make things difficult for his family on account of Mi Zhu, he would never meet them again as Shu and We had deep hatred for each other.
“Bring her here!” Liu Mang wanted to see who was so charming that Mi Fang refused to leave without.
“Yes!” Huang Zhong waved his hand. Two soldiers nodded and went down. They returned escorting a beatiful woman that made Liu Mang’s vision turn bright.
Beautiful and dignified was how Liu Mang would describe the woman. Even though Liu Mang was accustomed to beauties, he had to nod in front of the woman. His wife, Lu Lingqi inherited her father’s heroism and her mother’s tenderness. She had the model of a queen. His concubine Da Qiao and her sister Xiao Qiao were also beautiful flowers. Another rare flower was Yuan Gong’s daughter.
Basically, Liu Mang was accustomed to seeing beautiful women and his standards were raised. However, the woman in front of him made his heart beat. He then said with a smile.
“General Mi Fang is really a good role model. His wife is like a delicate flower. Both of them were like good couples that make people envious!” Liu Mang’s heart skipped a beat but did not dare to do anything when he thought of the two tirgresses at home. After marriage, Lu Lingqi and Da Qiao have become even more lawless. Liu Mang was already unable control them much less bring one more back. Da Qiao had even incited Lu Lingqi to change all of Liu Mang’s female servants to robust servants.
If the robust person was a man, it was applaudable. However, it could also be a woman. Liu Mang has seen women that were eight feet tall, could pick up a person that was a hundred kilograms without effort and could not be distinguished as a woman.
If the woman is cherished by Mi Fang, it would be helpful to Liu Mang. Women are not a necessity to Liu Mang. However, Mi Fang’s brother was a necessity.
“Hmph!” Mi Fang coldly snorted, expressing his disdain towards Liu Mang. ‘He still dares to show his disdain towards me.’ Liu Mang looked at Mi Fang with a smile.
“Madam. This one will be courteous.” Liu Mang tried saying to her in the ancient manner of speaker. The woman did not reply. Instead, she closely looked at Mi Fang with her charming eyes. It could be seen that she was very concerned about Mi Fang.
Concern was good to Liu Mang. He was actually afraid that the two did not really care about each other. As long as they care about each other, Liu Mang would be able to capture Mi Fang.
“What a pity. Unfortunately, it is a beautiful woman. In that case, you must stay far away from General Mi Fang. General Mi Fang. Look at Big Eared Liu. He struggled for so long and finally obtained nothing. He even need to deliver the life of a high ranking general. General Mi Fang. I know you are a true man who is indifferent to death. Death is unimportant as long as you die faithful. How admirable!” Liu Mang praised Mi Fang excessively as someone who is extremely loyal.
“Little Lord. You!” Huang Zhong was puzzled. He did not know what Liu Mang was trying to do. Earlier, Liu Mang had persuaded Mi Fang to descend the walls and surrender. Normally, one would persuade that surrendering was no big deal. However, he know praised Mi Fang for loyalty. This was Mi Fang’s idea of refusing to surrender even in death.
Liu Mang also did not explain himself and patted Huang Zhong. This action calmed Huang Zhong a lot. Liu Mang patted Huang Zhong’s shoulder, meaning that he was already successful.
“One must not have two masters! I, Mi Fang, may not have studied a lot but I also know this principle!” Liu Mang’s praises made Mi Fang satisfied.
“But it is such a pity!” Liu Mang’s words was a huge turning point for Mi Fang.
“What do you mean?”
“General Mi Fang is loyal and your name may go down in history. Historians would sing your name, making it known to the future generations. However, this woman may not be able to protect her reputation.”
“What did you say?” Mi Fang now felt uneasy.
“I did not say anything! Tsk. Such an exquisite woman. Look at her skin that is smooth like a jade. Look at her cherry lips and her soft and chewy face!” As Liu Mang said that, both his mouth and hands moved over. He carassed her face with the back of his hands. Before the negotiations was complete, Liu Mang was already reluctant to remove his hand from her face.
“General. Please conduct yourself with dignity!” The woman hurriedly retreated two steps away to avoid Liu Mang’s hand. However, two soldiers from the Urban Army were behind her. Where could she escape to?
“Little beauty. You do not need to be afraid. This one is the Sage King of the Han. This one would be able to give you a life of fortune!” Liu Mang pulled her into his embrace as his hand moved to her sensitive spots.
“What are you doing? Let go of her!” Mi Fang swiftly turned his head and stood up. He wanted to charge towards Liu Mang but was pressed back down by Huang Zhong. He was tied up and also weaker than Huang Zhong. As a result, he fell down.
“Why should I let her go? I should be enjoying such a beauty! General Mi Fang. Go and be loyal and have your name go down history! This King is just a common person that wants to enjoy the present. Rest assured that this King would love your wife for you. At the very least, she would have a husband better than you!”
“What did you say?” Mi Fang was moved but was still full of anger on the surface.
“Nothing. Han Sheng, go and send off General Mi Fang. Help him be a faithful official. I want to spend time with his wife.”
“Yes! Little Lord!” Huang Zhong nodded obediently and pulled Mi Fang out. He also pulled his own sword out, wanting to execute the man outside.
“Zi Fang!” The beautiful woman in Liu Mang’s arms moved when she saw that Huang Zhong was about to kill Mi Fang. However, she was physically weaker than Liu Mang.
“My wife? Become yours?” Mi Fang’s feelings rose up. “Wait!” Just as Huang Zhong wants to execute Mi Fang, Mi Fang shouted. “Your Highness. Mi Fang surrenders!”
“Oh?” Liu Mang was happy and stopped looking at the beauty in his arms. Truthfully speaking, Liu Mang would have done the same thing had he been in Mi Fang’s position.
“General Mi Fang does not want to be a faithful official anymore?”
“No! Mi Fang surrenders! He hopes Your Highness would let go of his wife and allow the surrendered general to reunite!”
“You should have said that earlier! If General Mi Fang is willing to surrender, the King would not treat the wife this way!” Liu Mang said as he immediately let go.
“Zi Fang! Zi Fang! Are you alright?” Liu Mang was a bit embarassed. Such a beautiful woman was defiled by such a second-rate sham. Those eyes of concern was definitely not fake.
“Zi Fang. You..” The woman wanted to say something but was stopped by Mi Fang.
“Han Sheng. Take General Mi Fang and his wife down for a bath and a change of clothes!” Liu Mang waved his hand at Huang Zhong.
“Yes!” Liu Mang was happy and did not see the flash of excitement in Mi Fang’s eyes for avoiding death. If Liu Mang’s expression were to be observed carefully, he was showing a mocking expression filled with a sense of success.
“Thank you Your Highness!” Mi Fang half knelt and cupped his fist at Liu Mang. This was equivalent to the attitude of surrrendering. Just as Mi Fang wanted to leave, the appearance of a military official made him turn pale with fright.