Book 13 Chapter 19 - Meaning Between Life and Death

Early in the morning, by East Tile Fort, Wang Nan walked out of the military tent, making a trip around the horse field.

After examining the amount of feed and the condition of the horses, he made his way to the front of the fort. Then, he heard a wave of rushed horse hooves sounds.

A scouting officer whose entire body was covered in either sweat or dew directly urged a horse up to him, jumping off of this horse.

Wang Nan’s brows furrowed. “What’s wrong?”

“The front border sentry post has already sent back confirmed information. It is Great Mang East Army’s main force.” This officer’s expression was extremely nervous, his voice trembling slightly. “There are eight thousand light cavalry at the front… Sir, what should we do?”

“Eight thousand light cavalry at the front?”

Wang Nan’s eyes narrowed, slowly repeating these words.

As a stationed general of only two thousand men, this fifty something year old general had no way of understanding the entire battle situation clearly, but all of the military intelligence in the military department was sent through scouting cavalry, passed through the soldiers of these garrisoned forts. Only by having these forts guarded by soldiers like him, scattered across Yunqin one after another like nails, would Great Mang’s army not be able to wantonly penetrate through, some of the enemy’s great movements would be quickly discovered.

A day ago, Wang Nan already learned from the military intelligence sent back from up ahead that three front line forts had already been taken down and that a great army numbering at least seventy thousand was quickly breaking in, their goal most likely East Scenery City.

Wang Nan didn’t understand clearly what significance East Scenery City posed to the greater war situation, but he at least understood extremely clearly that if East Scenery City was lost, then Meteor City’s eastern side would be completely open. At that time, Great Mang’s army could easily enter through the east, pouring into Meteor City this way.

East Scenery City previously wasn’t something Wang Nan had to worry about at all.

The only thing he had to consider was holding this fort, to not let some small waves of Great Mang attacks pass this fort and create some disturbances towards some reinforcement armies and transport fleets in the backlines. He had one other responsibility, which was to determine the path and speed of advance of this Great Mang East Army’s main force. This way, East Scenery City and the entire Yunqin military would be better prepared to deal with them.

This Great Mang East Army had at least five paths of advance they could choose from, but right now, their ‘luck’ seemed to be extremely good. On the other paths of advance, there were only a few small waves of Great Mang troops, while their fort was instead right in this Great Mang East Army main force’s path.

Wang Nan had experienced many battles, but he knew that facing a seventy thousand great army with just two thousand garrisoned soldiers, this was going to be different from any battle he had ever experienced before. What he needed to consider now was also completely different from before.

“We only have two hundred horses. Since the enemy is leading the way with eight thousand light cavalry, even if our entire army withdraws, it will still be completely impossible for us to reach East Scenery City behind us in time, at most just one or two hundred people making it back.” Wang Nan’s brows slowly unfolded, his expression quickly becoming calm. “Have Old Xu make some choices with the quickest speed possible, the young, the only sons of their families, those from families already with casualties, or some other reason, have him make considerations, choose some reasons to give the order to hide those people, let those people leave.”

When the official received Wang Nan’s final decision, his eye sockets became a bit moist, his expression also becoming calm. “Understood.” He showed this grizzled haired old soldier a deep bow of respect and then quickly rushed into the stone walled barracks in the back.

More than two hundred cavalry left from the back, crazily rushing east.

Wang Nan stood on the stone walls, watching as these youngsters under him left. His grizzled hair fluttered about in the morning winds. Without waiting for these two hundred or so cavalry to completely leave his line of sight, only making sure that these two hundred or so cavalry couldn’t hear his voice any more, he turned around, looking at the thousand seven hundred Yunqin soldiers who already quickly gathered under the orders of his officers, starting to calmly and meticulously explain the situation just like usual.

“I apologize, our luck really is extremely good, just happening to be along this Great Mang East Army main force’s itinerary. Soon… the enemy’s eight thousand vanguard cavalry will reach us. They have at least a great army of close to seventy thousand in the back.”

All of the soldiers became quiet. They obviously knew why Wang Nan first said the two words ‘I apologize’.

“Sir, our Yunqin is great. In the future, Yunqin’s history books will record the things that happened here.”

An officer suddenly smiled, taking a knee and drawing the blade at his waist, cutting out a line along his palm, saying seriously, “Right now… I must ask sir to arrange for our battle to come.”

“Sir, please give us your orders.”

All of the soldiers raised their heads, taking a knee and looking at Wang Nan, speaking with overcast voices.

Wang Nan looked at these soldiers beneath him, slowly nodding and starting to issue military orders.

“Destroy all of the crossbow carts that cannot be moved, or cannot be hidden in the passages or cellars. All of the provisions are to be burned down. Apart from all of the arrows needed for battle, everything else is to be destroyed, even the iron cooking pots and tents. Do not leave a single thing for these Great Mang people!”

“Make things look a bit more messy, have some horses make some footprints to create the illusion like we left.”

“Have everyone hide in the tunnels and cellars. When these cavalry enter our camp, we will slaughter our way out then!”

The extremely busy East Tile Fort quickly became quiet, becoming deathly still.

The originally extremely neat and tidy barracks became extremely messy like a massive garbage site, all of the military equipment on the stone walls that couldn’t be considered that tall were all flipped over and smashed. Foodstuffs and provisions were burned piles upon piles, becoming black embers.

There wasn’t a single person visible in this fort, as if it had just experienced judgment day.

Soon afterwards, the plains outside this fort began to tremble.

The earth houses within the stone walls and fort, as well as the collapsed corner towers all trembled, releasing waves of ashes.

A black expanse of Great Mang cavalry swarmed over like a tide.

A group of several hundred cavalry advance troops quickly entered this Yunqin fort. After this vacant ruined fort was quickly searched, they discovered large amounts of horse hooves and footprints leading outwards, as well as many things that fell off in a hurry.

The face of a Great Mang officer who received a report containing this information revealed a hint of disdain. The Great Mang light cavalry dressed in brass scales continued forward, looking like a tide as they rushed either through the two sides or directly through the fort, completely submerging this fort.

Suddenly, disharmonious fierce shouts and cries of alarm sounded.

The entire fort suddenly became chaotic.

Several dozen crossbow arrows directly shot out of the cellars’ hidden wooden boards, shooting through the earth roofs and landing on the cavalry army.

Yunqin soldiers crazily rushed out from hidden underground caves, their bodies covered in dust as they fought with these Great Mang cavalry.

Early spring of this year.

East Tile Fort’s remaining thousand and seven hundred Yunqin soldiers all heroically sacrificed their lives.

However, these Yunqin soldiers also made more than two thousand nine hundred Great Mang cavalry soldiers who were better armed than them die in East Tile Fort.

Great Mang’s Eastern Army main force passed through East Tile Fort, continuing to press towards East Scenery City.

Time flowed on. Within South Tomb Province’s borders, the battles between many Great Mang and Yunqin troops were like tightly pressed gears. After obtaining enough military intelligence, even the Yunqin and Great Mang high ranking officers with inferior ability could tell that the decisive battle between Yunqin and Great Mang in this South Tomb Province had already arrived… But by the time these officers could see this clearly, it was long too late.

Before this, Wenren Cangyue and Gu Yunjing already completely threw all of the forces they could gather here.

There were a hundred and fifty local army troops within South Tomb Province that were already advancing towards the battle site, but they already wouldn’t make it in time, basically isolated from this decisive battle.

Now, it was already extremely clear that there were two regions that were extremely vital to this decisive battle, Harmony Splendor City and East Scenery City. Harmony Splendor City had around forty thousand defending the city, while the Great Mang army attacking Harmony Splendor City also numbered around forty thousand. East Scenery City had fifty thousand guarding it, while the Great Mang army heading towards this city numbered at least seventy thousand.

In terms of the overall situations of the other regions, Great Mang’s army definitely had the advantage. However, in these two crucial regions, for Great Mang to have this type of force, it meant that Wenren Cangyue already seized a bit of an advantage in the past two weeks or so of battles.

Normally, even if it was East Scenery City’s fifty thousand garrison army facing Great Mang’s seventy thousand, this type of defending military strength couldn’t be considered weak either. Harmony Splendor City’s forty thousand versus forty thousand was even more so a great advantage… However, this wasn’t a usual ordinary battle, but rather a decisive battle between Yunqin and Great Mang. In this type of situation, what would decide the ultimate results of this battle, apart from the military’s numbers, was the military equipment and cultivators in the armies.

At this type of time, in this type of battle that decided the fate of two countries and countless civilians’ lives, there would definitely be large amounts of cultivators.

Gu Yunjing didn’t know who would win this type of battle.

Grand Secretary Zhou didn’t know who would win either.

Many Yunqin cultivators who knew about the current situation also knew that only after the final battle situation was revealed, would everyone know if Yunqin’s side won, or if Great Mang’s side won.

The only thing that was sure was that in a battle of this level, all cultivators had a chance of dying, the strength of any individual cultivator would seem insignificant.

Lin Xi already knew about all of this as well.

Regardless of whether it was Vice Principal Xia, Gu Yunjing or Grand Secretary Zhou, they would never force him to make any decisions. This was especially the case after the academy experienced a great change. It was to the extent where Green Luan Academy would only occasionally send some people and information to his side, not even giving him any suggestions for how to act. The Lin Xi on a Divine Wooden Flying Crane similarly felt like he was insignificant in this type of battle.

However, he already involved himself in this world, already unable to separate himself from it, even more so, he couldn’t just watch as endless people died.

That was why even though he didn’t know if he had the ability to change this battle’s final result, he still headed towards East Scenery City.

The Divine Wooden Flying Crane flew through South Tomb Province’s white clouds, flying towards East Scenery City.

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