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CHAPTER 85. The First Ruler Confides His Son To The Guardian’s Care; Zhuge Liang Calmly Settles The Five Attacks.

| Articles of Ancient China, English Version - Romance of the Three Kingdoms Novel | March 7, 2011

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In summer, the sixth month of the second year of
Manifest Might (AD 221) Lu Xun destroyed the army
of Shu at Yiling. The First Ruler sought refuge in
Baidicheng, of which Zhao Yun then undertook the
defense. When Ma Liang returned only to find his
lord defeated, he was more distressed than he could
say. He announced what Zhuge Liang had said
concerning the plans.
The First Ruler sighed, saying, “If I had listened to
the Prime Minister’s advice, the defeat would not
have happened. Now how can I face a return to my
capital?”
So he promulgated a command to change the
guest−house into the Palace of Eternal Peace. He
was deeply grieved when they told him of the deaths
Feng Xi, Cheng Ji, Fu Tong, Zhang Nan, King
Shamo Ke, and many of his generals.
Next he heard people say: “Huang Quan, who
had been given command of the army on the north
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bank, had given in to Wei. Your Majesty should
deliver his whole family to the authority and hold
them responsible for the renegade.”
But the First Ruler only said, “The army was quite
cut off by Wu from the south bank, and he had no
alternative but to surrender. Really, I betrayed him,
not he me. Why should I take vengeance on his
family?”
So he continued the issue of the renegade’s pay
to his family.
When Huang Quan surrendered, he was led into
the presence of Cao Pi, who said, “You have
surrendered to me because you desired to imitate
the admirable conduct of Chen Ping and Han Xin of
old.”
But Huang Quan replied, weeping, “The Ruler of
Shu has been very kind to me, and he gave me the
leadership of the army on the North of the Great
River. Lu Xun cut me off so that I could not return to
Shu, and I would not surrender to Wu, wherefore I
have yielded to Your Majesty. Defeated as I am, I
should be only too happy if my life were spared, but I
have no claim to the credit of the virtuous ones of
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old.”
The reply satisfied the Ruler of Wei, and he
conferred on him the title General Who Guards the
South. But Huang Quan, however, declined the offer.
Then one of the courtiers said, “A spy has
reported that all of your family have been put to
death by the Ruler of Shu.”
But the leader replied that he could not believe it.
“I have the greatest confidence in the clemency of
the Ruler of Shu. He knows I would not have
surrendered of my own free will, and he would not
injure my family.”
And the Ruler of Wei agreed with his opinion. A
poem has been written upbraiding Huang Quan:
That was a pity that Huang Quan grudged to die;
Though he yielded to Wei, not Wu,
Yet he crooked the knee in an alien court.
Which the loyal cannot do.
Cao Pi sought advice from Jia Xu concerning his
design of bringing the whole country under his own
rule.
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“I wish to bring the whole empire under my rule;
which shall I first reduce, Shu or Wu?”
“Liu Bei is an able warrior, and Zhuge Liang is a
most capable administrator; Sun Quan possesses
discrimination, and his general, Lu Xun, occupies all
the strategic positions of importance. The natural
obstacles, the intervening rivers and spreading
lakes, would be hard to overcome. I do not think you
have any leader to match either of these two men.
Even with the prestige of Your Majesty’s own
presence, no one could guarantee the result. The
better course is to hold on and await the outcome of
the struggle between those two.”
“I have already dispatched three armies against
Wu; can it be that they will fail?”
The Chair of the Secretariat, Liu Ye, held the
same opinion as his colleague. Said he, “Lu Xun has
just won a great victory over the great host of Shu,
and all his army is full of confidence. Further, there
are the lakes and the rivers, which are natural
difficulties hard to cope with. And again, Lu Xun is
resourceful and well prepared.”
The Ruler of Wei said, “Formerly, Sir, you urged
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me to attack Wu; why do you now give contrary
advice?”
“Because times have changed. When Wu was
suffering defeat after defeat, the country was
depressed and might be smitten. Now this great
victory has changed all that, and their morale has
increased a hundred times. I say now they may not
be attacked.”
“Well; but I have decided to attack. So say no
more,” said the Ruler of Wei.
He then led the Imperial Guards out to support his
three armies. But the scouts soon brought news
justifying the opinion of his advisers: “A force of Wu
has been sent to oppose each of our three armies.
Lu Fan leads an army against Cao Xiu at Dongkou,
Zhuge Jin against Cao Zhen at Nanjun, and Zhu
Huan against Cao Ren at Ruxu.”
Liu Ye pointed this out and again said, “Wu has
prepared, and no success can be expected.”
Still Cao Pi was obstinate, and marched.
The Wu leader, Zhu Huan, who had been sent
against Cao Ren at Ruxu, was a young man of
twenty−seven. He was bold and resourceful, and
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Sun Quan held him in great regard. Hearing that Cao
Ren was going to attack Xianxi, Zhu Huan led the
bulk of his troops to defend it, leaving only five
thousand troops in Ruxu. Then he heard that the van
of the enemy, fifty thousand under Commander
Chang Diao, with the aid of Zhuge Qian and Wang
Shuang, had made a dash for Ruxu, so he hastened
back and found the officers were in great fear.
Drawing his sword, he made a speech, “Success
depends upon the leader rather than on the number
of soldiers. The Art of War says that the value of one
soldier who inhabits the place equals that of two
soldiers who come from afar; and those who are in
possession, however in small number, can overcome
those who come from afar. Now the enemy is weary
from a long march, and I and you, my men, can hold
this place together. We have the Great River to
defend us on the south, and we are backed by the
mountains on the north. Success should be ours
easily, and we are as hosts at home awaiting the
arrival of our weary visitors. This will give us victory
in every fight. Even if Cao Pi comes, we need feel no
anxiety. How much less care we for Cao Ren and his
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troops?”
Zhu Huan he issued orders to furl all the banners
and to silence all the drums as if the city was empty
of defenders.
In time, Chang Diao and his veterans of the van
came to the city. Not a person was visible, and he
hastened forward with all speed. But as he neared
the city, suddenly a bomb went off. Immediately up
rose a forest of flags, and out dashed Zhu Huan with
his sword drawn. And he made for Chang Diao. In
the third encounter Zhu Huan cut down Chang Diao,
and the troops of Wu, rushing to the attack,
thoroughly routed the invaders, slaying innumerable
soldiers. Beside scoring a complete victory, Zhu
Huan took much spoil of flags and weapons and
horses.
Cao Ren himself, coming up later, was attacked
by the troops from Xianxi and was also routed. He
fled home to his master with the news of defeat and
destruction.
And before the Ruler of Wei could decide what
course to take in regard to this loss, the news came
of the defeat of his another army: “Cao Zhen and
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Xiahou Shang were besieging Nanjun when Zhuge
Jin from within and Lu Xun from without attacked in
concert. The two generals suffered a great loss.”
Immediately, another report came: “Cao Xiu has
been defeated by Lu Fan at Dongkou.”
So all three had failed and were lost, and Cao Pi
sighed and said sadly, “This has come from my
willfulness and neglect of advice of Jia Xu and Liu
Ye.”
The summer of that year was very unhealthy, and
a pestilence swept away the soldiers more than half
the number. So they were marched home to Capital
Luoyang. The two countries were at enmity though
they were not fighting.
Meanwhile the First Ruler was failing. He
remained in his Palace of Eternal Peace and
presently was confined to his couch. Gradually he
became worse, and in the fourth moon of the third
year of Manifest Might (AD 222) his condition
became serious. He himself felt the end was near,
and he was depressed and wept for his two lost
brothers till the sight of his eyes suffered. He was
morose and ill−tempered: he could not bear any of
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his court near him, drove away his servants and lay
upon his couch sad and solitary.
One evening as thus he lay, a sudden gust of
wind came into the chamber, almost extinguishing
the candles. As they burned bright again, he saw two
men standing in the shade behind them.
“I told you I was worried,” said the First Ruler,
“and bade you leave me; why have you come back?
Go!”
But they remained and did not go. Wherefore the
First Ruler rose and went over to look at them. As he
drew near he saw one was Guan Yu and the other
Zhang Fei.
“Are you still alive, then, brothers?” said he.
“We are not men; we are shades,” said Guan Yu.
“The Supreme One has conferred spirithood upon us
in consideration of our faithfulness throughout life,
and ere long, Brother, we three shall be together
again.” The First Ruler clutched at the figures and
burst into tears; then he awoke. The two figures were
no longer there. He called in his people and asked
the hour; they told him the third watch.
“I am not much longer for this world,” said he with
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a sigh.
Messengers were sent to Capital Chengdu to
summon the Prime Minister and other high officers of
state to receive the Emperor’s last instructions. They
came, Zhuge Liang bringing the two younger sons,
Prince of Lu Liu Yung and Prince of Liang Liu Li. The
eldest, the heir−apparent, was left in charge of the
capital.
Zhuge Liang saw at once that his master was
very ill. He bowed to the ground at the foot of the
Dragon Couch.
The dying Emperor bade him come near and sit
beside him, and he patted his Minister on the back,
saying, “The attainment of emperorship was your
work. Little thought you that I should prove so stupid
as not to follow your advice and so bring about the
late disasters. But I am deeply sorry, and now I shall
not live long. My heir is a degenerate, but I must
leave him to do the best he can with the great
inheritance.”
And the tears flowed in streams.
“I trust Your Majesty will fulfill the hopes of the
people by a speedy recovery,” said Zhuge Liang,
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also in tears.
Turning his head, the First Ruler saw Ma Su, Ma
Liang’s brother, at the bedside. He bade him retire.
When Ma Su had left the chamber, the First Ruler
said, “Do you think Ma Su is clever?”
“He is one of the ablest people in the world,” said
Zhuge Liang.
“I do not think so. I think his words exceed his
deeds. Do not make much use of him. Watch him
carefully.”
Having said this, he bade them summon the high
officers of state to the chamber. Taking paper and
pen, the First Ruler wrote his testament.
He handed it to the Prime Minister with a sigh and
said, “I am no great scholar, and I only know the
rough outlines of what should be known. But the
Teacher has said: ‘A bird’s song is sad when death is
near, and a dying person’s words are good.’ I was
waiting that we might aid each other in the
destruction of the Caos and the restoration of the
Hans, but ere the work is complete I am called away,
and this last command of mine I confide to you as
Prime Minister to be handed to my son and heir, Liu
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Shan. My words are to be taken seriously. I trust that
you will instruct and guide my son.”
Zhuge Liang and all those present wept and
prostrated themselves, saying, “We pray Your
Majesty repose yourself. We will do our utmost
whereby to prove our gratitude for the kindness we
have received.”
At the First Ruler’s command the attendants
raised Zhuge Liang from the earth. With one hand
the dying man brushed away the falling tears, while
with the other he grasped Zhuge Liang’s hand and
said, “The end is near; I have something more to say
as to a close general.”
“What holy command has Your Majesty to give?”
“You are many times more clever than Cao Pi,
and you must safeguard the kingdom and complete
the great work. If my son can be helped, help him.
But if he proves a fool, then take the throne yourself
and be a ruler.”
Such a speech almost startled Zhuge Liang out of
his senses. A cold sweat broke out all over his body,
and his limbs threatened to cease to support him.
He fell on his knees, saying, “I could never do
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otherwise than wear myself to the bone in the
service of your son, whom I will serve till death.”
He knocked his head upon the ground till blood
ran down. The dying man called Zhuge Liang closer,
and at the same time making his two sons come
near, he said to them, “My sons, remember your
father’s words. After my death you are to treat the
Prime Minister as you would your father and be not
remiss, for thereby you will fulfill your father’s hopes.”
He made the two Princes pay to Zhuge Liang the
obeisance due to a father.
Said Zhuge Liang, “Were I destroyed and ground
into the earth, I should be unable to repay the
kindness I have experienced.”
Turning to the assembled officers, the First Ruler
said, “As you have seen, I have confided my orphan
son to the care of the Prime Minister and bidden my
sons treat him as a father. You too, Sirs, are to treat
him with deference. This is my dying request and
charge to you.”
Turning to Zhao Yun, he said, “You and I have
gone together through many dangers and difficulties.
Now comes the parting of our ways. You will not
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forget our old friendship, and you must see to it that
my sons follow my precepts.”
“I shall never dare to give other than my best,”
said Zhao Yun. “The fidelity of the dog and horse is
mine to give and shall be theirs.”
Then the First Ruler turned to the others, “Noble
Sirs, I am unable to speak to you one by one and lay
a charge upon each individual; but I say to you:
Maintain your self−respect.”
These were his last words. He was sixty−three,
and he died on the twenty−fourth day of the fourth
month (AD 222). A poem was written by Du Fu on
his death:
The Emperor set out to destroy the land that lay
through the Three Gorges,
Failed he and breathed his last in the palace of
Eternal Peace,
The palace fair of his thoughts lay not this side
the highlands.
Beautiful chambers are vainly sought in his rural
temple,
Now are the pines near his shrine nesting places
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for herons,
Through the courts aged peasants saunter,
enjoying their leisure,
Nearby often is found a shrine to this strategist
famous,
Prince and minister’s needs are now but offerings
in season.
Thus died the First Ruler. All present lifted up
their voices and wept.
The Prime Minister led the procession that
escorted the coffin to the capital, and the heir, Liu
Shan, came to the outskirts of the city, as a dutiful
son should, to receive the remains with due respect.
The coffin was laid in the Great Hall of the palace,
wherein they lamented and performed the
ceremonies appointed. At the end of these the
testament was opened and read: “I first fell ill from a
simple ailment. Other disorders followed, and it
became evident that I should not recover.
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“They say that death at fifty cannot be called
premature; and as I have passed three score, I may
not resent the call. But when I think of you and your
brothers I regret. Now I say to you, strive and strive
again. Do no evil because it is a small evil; do not
leave undone a small good because it is a small
good. Only with wisdom and virtue people can be
won. But your father’s virtue was but slender, and do
not imitate.
“After my death you are to conduct the affairs of
the state with the Prime Minister. You are to treat
him as a father and serve him without remissness.
You and your brothers are to seek instructions. This
is my final and simple command.”
When this had been read, Zhuge Liang said, “The
state cannot go a single day without a ruler,
wherefore I beg you to install the heir as successor
to the great line of the Hans.”
Thereupon the ceremony was performed, and the
new Emperor took his place. The style of the reign
was changed to “Beginning Prosperity.” Zhuge Liang
was made Lord of Wuxiang and Imperial Protector of
Yiazhou.
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Then they buried the late Emperor at Huiling with
the posthumous style of Liu Bei the Glorious
Emperor.
The Empress, of the Wu family, was formally
created Empress Dowager. The late Consort Gan
became the Glorious Empress, and the Lady Mi was
granted similar, also posthumous, rank. There were
promotions in rank and rewards for all, and a general
amnesty was proclaimed.
Before long, knowledge of these things came to
the Middle Land, and a report was sent to Capital
Luoyang and made known to the Ruler of Wei.
Cao Pi felt relieved and was glad of the death of
his rival, saying, “Liu Bei is dead: I am no longer
worried. An attack during the critical moment can
bring a victory over Shu.”
But Jia Xu dissuaded him, saying, “Liu Bei is
gone, but surely he has confided the care of the
state to Zhuge Liang, who is indebted to him so
deeply. He will exhaust every effort to support his
young lord. You may not hastily attack.”
As Jia Xu tendered this remonstrance, a man
suddenly stepped out from the serried ranks of
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courtiers and said fiercely, “If you neglect this
moment, can you expect a more favorable
opportunity?”
All eyes turned to the speaker; it was Sima Yi.
The interruption greatly pleased Cao Pi, who at
once asked how it was to be done. He propounded
his plan in the following speech: “It would be very
difficult to obtain success with our own resources.
Hence we must use five armies and attack all round
at the same time, so as to divide Zhuge Liang.”
“Where are the five armies to come from?” said
Cao Pi.
Sima Yi went on, “The first is to be got from
Liaodong, from the Xianbi State. You must write to
King Kebi Neng and send him presents of gold and
silks so that he may send one hundred thousand
Qiang troops from Liaoxi to attack Xiping Pass.
Secondly, the king of the Mang Tribes, Meng Huo,
must be persuaded to lead one hundred thousand
troops to attack the south of Shu—Yiazhou,
Yongchang, Zangge, and Yuesui. Thirdly, you must
send an ambassador to Wu with fair promises of an
increase of territory, and so induce Sun Quan to
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march one hundred thousand troops to the attack of
the Three Gorges, making Fucheng his objective.
The fourth army can be got from General Meng Da in
Shangyong, who can muster one hundred thousand
troops to attack Hanzhong. Lastly, our own force of
one hundred thousand troops may be placed under
Cao Zhen, who will attack by way of Yangping Pass.
With five hundred thousand troops making
simultaneous attacks along five different directions, it
would be hard for Zhuge Liang to hold his own, even
if he had the talent of Lu Wang himself.”
The scheme delighted Cao Pi, who at once cast
about for four glib−tongued messengers. He also
i s s u e d a c o m m i s s i o n t o C a o Z h e n a s
Commander−in−Chief with the order to take
Yangping Pass.
At this time Zhang Liao and most others of the
veterans who had served Cao Cao were keeping
watch in various stations and passes and fords in
Jizhou, Xuzhou, Qingzhou, and Hefei. They were not
summoned for this expedition to the west.
After the accession of Liu Shan, the Latter Ruler,
many of those who had served his father gradually
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died after the decease of their master. The work of
the administration of the country, the choice of
officials, law−making, taxation, decision of legal
cases, was all done by the Prime Minister.
As the Latter Ruler had no consort, the courtiers,
headed by Zhuge Liang, proposed, saying, “The
daughter of the late General of the Chariot and
Cavalry Zhang Fei prudent, and she is now
seventeen. Your Majesty should make her Empress.”
So Lady Zhang was married to the Emperor and
so became Empress Zhang.
It was in the autumn of the first year of Beginning
Prosperity (AD 223) that the Latter Ruler heard of the
plans and intentions of Wei against his state. The
persons who told him gave him full details of the five
armies and said they had previously told the Prime
Minister.
“But his conduct puzzles us,” said the informers.
“We do not know why he does not take some action
instead of remaining shut up in his palace all the
time.”
The Latter Ruler became really alarmed, and he
sent one of his personal attendants to call the Prime
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Minister to court. The servant was gone a long time,
and then returned to say: “The servants in the Prime
Minister Palace said the Prime Minister was ill and
not to be seen.”
The young Emperor’s distress increased, and he
sent two high ministers—Dong Yun and Du
Qiong—to Zhuge Liang, saying they were to see him
even if he was on his couch and tell him the dreadful
news of invasion. They went; but they got no farther
than the gate. The keepers of the gate refused them
admission. Then they confided their message in brief
to the wardens of the gate, who went inside with it.
After keeping them waiting a long time, the
wardens returned, saying, “The Prime Minister is
rather better and will be at court in the morning.”
The two ministers sighed deeply as they wended
their way to the Emperor’s palace.
Next morning a great crowd of officers assembled
at the gate of the Prime Minister’s residence to wait
for him to appear. But he did not come out. It began
to grow late, and many of them were tired of waiting,
when at last Du Qiong went again to the Emperor
and suggested, saying, “Your Majesty should go in
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person and try to get Zhuge Liang to say what
should be done.”
The Latter Ruler then returned to his palace with
the officials and told the Empress Dowager his
trouble. She was also alarmed. “What can he
mean?” said she. “This does not look like acting in
the spirit of the charge laid upon him by the late
Emperor. Let me go myself.”
“Oh no,” said Dong Yun. “Your Majesty must not
go. We think all is well, and the Prime Minister
certainly understands and will do something. Beside,
you must let His Majesty go first, and if the Prime
Minister still shows remissness, then Your Majesty
can summon him to the Temple of the Dynasty and
ask him.”
So it was left at that. And the next day the
Emperor rode in his chariot to the gate of his
minister. When the doorkeepers saw the imperial
chariot appear, they fell upon their knees to welcome
the Emperor.
“Where is the Prime Minister?” asked he.
“We do not know. But we have orders not to let in
the crowd of officers.”
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The Emperor then descended and went on foot
right in to the third gate. Then he saw Zhuge Liang
leaning on a staff beside a fishpond looking at the
fishes. The Latter Ruler approached, and stood
behind him for a long time.
Presently the Latter Ruler said slowly and with
dignity, “Is the Prime Minister really enjoying
himself?”
Zhuge Liang started and looked round. When he
saw who the speaker was, he suddenly dropped his
staff and prostrated himself.
“I ought to be put to death ten thousand times,”
said Zhuge Liang.
But the Emperor put forth his hand and helped
him to rise, saying, “Cao Pi threatens immediate
invasion from five points; why will you not come forth
and attend to business?”
Zhuge Liang laughed. He conducted the Emperor
into an inner room, and, when he was seated, Zhuge
Liang addressed the Emperor, saying, “Could it be
possible that I was ignorant of these five armies? I
was not looking at the fishes; I was thinking.”
“But, this being so, what shall we do?”
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“I have already turned back that Kebi Neng of the
Qiangs, and Meng Huo of the Mangs, and the rebel
leader Meng Da, and the army from Wei. I have also
thought out a plan to circumvent the army from Wu,
but I need a special sort of person to carry it out. I
want an envoy, an able talker, one capable of
persuading other people. It was because I have not
found such a person yet that I was so deeply in
thought. But Your Majesty may set your mind at rest
and not be anxious.”
The Latter Ruler heard this half terrified and half
glad.
“Surely your superhuman devices are too deep
for mortal human. But may I ask how these armies
have been made to turn back?”
“Since His late Majesty bade me take the best
care of your welfare, I dare not be remiss for a single
moment. Some officers in Chengdu are ignorant of
that refinement of war which consists in not allowing
the enemy to guess your plans. How could I let them
know anything? When I heard that Kebi Neng, the
king of Qiangs, might invade, I remembered that Ma
Chao’s forefathers were friendly with those
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tribespeople and they had a high opinion of Ma
Chao, thinking him a leader of supreme prestige. So
I sent orders by dispatch to Ma Chao to hold the
Xiping Pass, and to prepare ambushes in certain
places and change them daily so as to keep the
Qiangs off. That settled them.
“I sent hastily to the south to order Wei Yan to
move certain bodies of troops about through the
southwest territories, to be seen and then to
disappear, to go in and come out, and to march to
and fro, so that the Mangs should be perplexed. The
Mangs are brave, but prone to doubts and
hesitations, and they would not advance in the face
of the unknown. Hence there is nothing to fear in that
quarter.
“I also knew that Meng Da and our Li Yan were
sworn friends. I had left Li Yan in charge of the
Palace of Eternal Peace. I sent Li Yan a letter and
urged him to write to Meng Da, so that Meng Da
would feign illness and not move his army.
“I sent Zhao Yun to occupy Yangping Pass and
all the strategic positions on the way by which Cao
Zhen would march, and bade him defend only and
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not go to the battle. If our troops refuse to come out,
Cao Zhen will certainly have to retire. So all those
four are settled. But for greater security I have sent
Zhang Bao and Guan Xing each with thirty thousand
troops to camp at points whence they can quickly
help any of the others who may need it. And none of
these arrangements are known here.
“Now there is only Wu left to deal with. Had the
other four armies succeeded and Shu been in
danger, Sun Quan would have come to the attack. If
the others fail, I know he will not budge, for he will
remember that Cao Pi has just sent three armies to
attack his country. And this being so, I want some
one with a ready tongue and ingenious mind to go
and talk plainly to Sun Quan. So far I have not found
such a person, and I am perplexed. I regret that I
have given Your Majesty occasion to make this
journey.”
“The Empress Dowager also wanted to come,”
said the Emperor. “But now you have spoken, O
Minister Father, I am as one awakened from a
dream; I shall grieve no more.”
They two drank a few cups of wine together, and
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the Prime Minister escorted his master to his chariot.
A ring of courtiers were waiting, and they could not
help remarking the happiness that shone in their
master’s face. The Latter Ruler took his leave and
returned to his palace, but the courtiers did not know
what to think.
Now Zhuge Liang had noted a certain man
among the crowd who smiled and looked quite
happy. Zhuge Liang looked at him intently and then
recollected his name, which was Deng Zhi of Xinye,
a descendant of Regent Marshal Deng Yu of Han.
Zhuge Liang sent a man privately to detain Deng Zhi,
and when all the others had gone, Zhuge Liang led
him into the library for a chat. Presently he came to
the matter near his heart.
“The three states have become a fact,” said
Zhuge Liang. “Now if our state wanted to absorb the
other two and restore the condition of one rule, which
country should it attack first?”
“Though Wei is the real rebel, yet Wei is strong
and would be very difficult to overthrow. Any move
against it would have to develop slowly. As our
Emperor has but lately succeeded his father and the
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people are none too decided in his favor, I should
propose a treaty of mutual defense with Wu. This
would obliterate the enmity of His late Majesty and
would have important results. However, you, Sir,
may have another opinion. What is it?”
“That is what I have been thinking of this long
time, but I had not the person for the task. Now I
have found him.”
“What do you want the person to do?” said Deng
Zhi. “I want him to go as envoy to Wu to negotiate
such a treaty. As you understand the position so
well, you will surely do honor to your prince’s
commission as envoy. There is no other who would
succeed.”
“I fear I am not equal to such a task: I am not
clever enough and too ignorant.”
“I will inform the Emperor tomorrow and beg him
to appoint you. Of course you will accept.”
Deng Zhi consented and then took his leave. As
promised, Zhuge Liang memorialized, and the Latter
Ruler consented that the mission should be
entrusted to Deng Zhi. And he started.
Three Kingdoms Romance
The din of war will cease in Wu,
When Shu’s desires are known.
For the success or failure of this mission read the
next chapter.
Three Kingdoms Romance

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