Within a certain small town in Yunqin, in an alley, an older private school instructor dressed in a moon white long gown was currently holding a ruler in one hand, a scroll in another, moving his head as he instructed more than twenty children.
Suddenly, a wave of footsteps sounded. A drunkard whose eyes were bloodshot rushed into the classroom. He directly grabbed this private school instructor’s sleeves, dragging him out. “Do you know what kind of time it is? Yet you are still in the mood to teach… Why don’t you try and listen to what kind of things are happening outside?”
“Niu Tuzi! I always told you that alcohol makes a fool, yet you don’t listen. Today, you are already this drunk, even disrupting the classroom, preposterous! If you do not let go right now, see if I don’t strike you with this ruler!”
The older instructor stared blankly for a moment. Then, his face immediately became entirely red, shouting out angrily.
This drunkard was originally his good friend, but he enjoyed drinking, often getting drunk. He didn’t listen no matter how many times he was advised. Only, rushing straight into the classroom, this was the first time in the past decade.
“Old Xu, I am not looking for trouble because I am drunk, I am completely sober!”
When he saw that this instructor already raised his ruler, this middle-aged drunkard’s eyes shed tears. “Meteor City Principal Zhang defended from an army of three hundred thousand… has been broken! Great Mang has broken through! The entire city has been turned into scorched earth!”
The old instructor had just begun to stand back up. When he heard this, he almost fell back to the ground. “What kind of nonsense are you spouting? You are actually this drunk!”
“I really wish this was merely delirious drunken talk. However, just go outside and listen! It is completely true… don’t tell me that everyone is drunk?”
The middle-aged man immediately broke out into tears, choking with emotions and finding it hard to speak.
The old instructor was first stunned, and then it was as if his soul left his body. He struggled free from this middle-aged man’s grip and then ran outside.
Outside the private school, wherever he went, he only saw that everyone really seemed like they were drunk, or as if doomsday had descended, in complete fear, shedding bitter tears like the middle-aged man behind him, or completely in a daze. When he walked along the streets and alleys, all he heard were the two words Meteor City.
This old instructor continuously asked several people, but the answer he received in reply was the same. As he walked forward, he actually seemed to have already become an imbecile, completely unaware even when he lost one of his shoes.
Only when that middle-aged man from the back held him, did this old instructor return to this world. He broke out into sobs, crying as if his heart was tearing, lungs splitting, crying until chunks of his flesh were spat out, dyeing his spotlessly white beard red.
This old instructor was close to eighty years of age. His only son was precisely one of the defenders of Meteor City back then, dying in the bloody war against Nanmo Country’s army of three hundred thousand.
Even though he died, after that battle brought peace to the world, Yunqin enjoyed decades of prosperity, so this old instructor still felt pride inwardly, felt that his son’s death had some worth. He felt great glory and honor. Yet today… Yunqin Empire was clearly this world’s most powerful empire, yet Meteor City was instead brought down? It was instead wantonly set aflame by Great Mang’s army, turned to scorched earth?!
Spring left and summer arrived.
Only, this summer, Yunqin Empire’s people only felt as if it was even colder than the spring that had just passed.
The six thousand garrisoned troops weren’t as powerful as Principal Zhang and those Green Luan Academy experts before. When facing six times their numbers, moreover an ambush army personally led by Great Mang Seven Armies’ Sacred Expert Southern Path Great General Qilian Bao, there was no way they could defend it.
That was why Meteor Lake fell.
Just like how Thousand Sunset Border Pass was overtaken by Wenren Cangyue with astonishing speed, Meteor City was also easily taken down by an overwhelming force.
Ordinary Yunqin civilians, after receiving news, didn’t know that Meteor City’s strategic significance in the entire province was similar to Moon Seizing City, that Yunqin Empire stored up large amounts of provisions in this province, making it even more important. However, putting aside all strategic significance, Meteor City, in the hearts of Yunqin’s people, was not just a city.
After the four hundred thousand Yunqin southern attacking troops were defeated, Yunqin Empire trying to get out of their disadvantaged state, Wenren Cangyue obtained the complete support of Great Mang. Both sides began to throw in even more forces.
Yunqin’s original reserve forces numbered three million seven hundred thousand. Central Continent Guards and the local armies numbered three million one hundred thousand, while the three border armies had six hundred thousand in total.
This number was extremely terrifying.
It was because in some of the ancient dynasties Lin Xi read about in his past world, even though some of these dynasties’ militaries reached two million seven hundred thousand, the ones with true fighting strength were merely a few hundred thousand.
According to this, it was clear just how massive Yunqin Empire was, just how prosperous the military might of this world is.
Great Mang Empire’s territory is only about a third of Yunqin, their population and national power cannot compare to Yunqin. Even after experiencing Zhantai Mang’s years of planning and care, many places were still sparsely populated, similar to Jadefall City. Even if the taxes were exempt, encouraged to flourish, their numbers still didn’t increase much. That was why Great Mang’s regular army only numbered about nine hundred thousand.
Three million seven hundred thousand, facing nine hundred thousand, moreover, starting from the beginning of this war, Yuqin had already begun to continuously levy troops… When the military strength and national force of both sides clashed like this, how could they possibly lose?
Why was Meteor City still lost?
That was why Yunqin’s commoners couldn’t understand it at all.
Within Central Continent Imperial City.
“Are you all idiots?”
“This one gave all of you the best military equipment, so many men, yet you all actually let Wenren Cangyue bring down Meteor City?”
“Could it be that you all don’t know what kind of place Meteor City is? You all actually dare let this type of place be taken down?”
“Could it be that even all of you combined together cannot compare to a single Wenren Cangyue?”
In the throne room, Yunqin Emperor looked at the Martial Sector officers kneeling on the ground, so angry he was momentarily speechless.
This monarch who had millions of troops within his grasp couldn’t understand how this happened either.
Right now, all of the Yunqin forces in South Tomb Province and Thousand Sunset Border Army also already exceeded four hundred thousand again. Meanwhile, all of Great Mang’s forces in Yunqin combined together didn’t even reach two hundred and fifty thousand.
With this type of difference in military strength, Hu Piyi even already returning to the Thousand Sunset Mountains he was familiar with to face Wenren Cangyue, even if they couldn’t immediately seize victory, they should at least be able to stop Great Mang from continuously gaining momentum. How could they instead suffer another huge defeat like this so quickly?!
Of Yunqin’s four hundred thousand troops, three hundred thousand of them were in the southern region between Thousand Sunset Border Pass and South Tomb Province’s southern region. Now, all of Meteor City was burned down, so the three hundred thousand troops were like snakes with their tongues cut. How could they not be defeated?
When facing the furious Yunqin emperor, all of the faces of the military officers on the ground turned deathly pale, feeling incomparable humiliation.
However, in their hearts, they still couldn’t help but think that if it wasn’t for you not letting the academy interfere, not letting those Yunqin elders interfere… this battle, how could we have possibly lost in such a humiliating way?
“What kind of time is it already, yet your majesty is still playing around with this type of anger and blaming?”
One of them couldn’t help but think this inwardly.
However, he didn’t dare speak it.
It was because those that dared berate the emperor in front of his face, the subjects that dared directly speak these types of words were already in prison or executed.
“Could it be that this one really has to bow my head to those people?”
However, what these people didn’t know was that right now, the monarch on the dragon throne also had these types of thoughts.
He, who was so ambitious in expanding their borders, wishing to make the empire more prosperous, was indeed a brilliant monarch in many areas. Only, even this monarch with such great ambitions, still felt a feeling of powerlessness and despair at this time.
It was because he was wise in many areas that he also understood the state treasury, transport, military transferring and many production industries well… He knew that within such a short amount of time, gathering this many Yunqin reinforcements who were armed to the teeth was also approaching Yunqin Empire’s limit. At the very least, it was the limit of his abilities.
There were many parts of Yunqin that had to be guarded, or else there would be bandits everywhere, chaos within the borders. The troops that were transported couldn’t fight on an empty stomach either, provisions and equipment needed time to accumulate.
Jadefall Border Army was Wenren Cangyue’s old home, who dared transfer personnel from that place?
There was also the strongest Dragon Snake Border Army that seemed to be able to contend with Wenren Cangyue, they also needed to face the cave barbarians.
The popular grievance of Yunqin’s civilians, because of Meteor City’s collapse, already reached the peak, some disorder already appearing in various lands. In the beginning, all of Yunqin’s commoners supported this war against the south, because in their eyes, there was no way the massive Yunqin Empire couldn’t deal with a traitorous general. However now, the people already began to express discontent towards their ruler, as well as the direction of their own obstinate anger and resentment.
Those refugees who fled from South Tomb Province would even more so proliferate these emotions.
Were those troops who wouldn’t be able to receive enough provisions and equipment supposed to just die?
While he felt fury and powerless, Wen Xuanshu entered from outside the palace, walking in.
This Grand Secretary who quickly became the Yunqin subject with the greatest authority delivered a scroll into Yunqin emperor’s hands, and then withdrew, standing there respectfully.
Yunqin Emperor felt even more anger and helplessness. He didn’t know that what he was facing was going to be another piece of unfavorable information… It was because only extremely important information would be personally delivered by Wen Xuanshu at this type of time.
However, after just a single look, his anger became ecstasy. The hint of helplessness within his heart completely disappeared.
He only felt like in this world, there was nothing else that he couldn’t deal with.
He stood up from the dragon throne, his voice trembling again. Moreover, he declared with a dignified and incredibly proud voice to all of the military’s great subjects kneeling before him, “The imperial physician has already confirmed that within one of my beloved concubines, another crown prince has been born!”
All of these military figures suddenly raised their heads.
For them, this was indeed good news. It was because they understood extremely well that it was precisely because of the emperor’s sole son dying that the emperor’s mood changed so greatly.
“Have Hu Piyi first endure the crimes of this battle. The disadvantage of this battle was brought about precisely by him.”
Yunqin Emperor looked at the Martial Sector individual before him with an expression full of pride and dignity. “Transfer Gu Yunjing to South Tomb Province and have him take over command. The spot of Dragon Snake Border Pass great general will still be left for him.”
All of these military personnel released a breath of relief, an expression of happiness appearing in all of their eyes.
Having Hu Piyi shoulder the responsibility for all of the defeats was naturally unfair, but this could quell a bit of popular grievance. Moreover, at the very least, they didn’t have to let those three hundred thousand army fight to the death… A dozen or so breaths ago, they all thought that the emperor would give this order. At that time, they didn’t know if they would be able to convince the emperor who lost control over his mental state otherwise.
“Your majesty is brilliant!”
Several high ranking military officers spoke at this time.
In their eyes, after obtaining a new crown prince, Yunqin Emperor’s rationality and brilliance that originally already seemed to be lost now finally began to return.
Many things in this world were different from the world Lin Xi was familiar with. Since the imperial physician already confirmed that the child in the concubine’s belly was male, and not female, then there was no way there would be any mistake.
However, regardless of whether it was Yunqin Emperor who felt pride and power return to his body or those military great figures, none of them knew that within the depths of the head hung, quietly standing Wen Xuanshu’s eyes, there was a hint of cold mockery.
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