The sun slowly rose up the sky. The Cao troops was already preparing for breakfast. Today was the final day. They absolutely had to capture Kaiyang and return to reinforce Xiapi.
“Lu Bu, Lu Fengxian. This Cao Mende shall obtain your head!” Having tortured by his headache for the whole night, Cao Cao was unable to obtain a good night’s sleep. Right now, he wanted to kill someone really bad.
“Transmit my orders. Tell the troops to prepare for battle. After a single incense worth of time, we shall besiege the city with all our might. He who kills a Lu Bu soldier shall be rewarded ten gold, five mu of fields and a promotion in rank.” The remaining Lu Bu soldiers are the elite amongst the elites. They are very difficult to kill. Their every move and every stroke are meant to kill. They all knew the fastest and the most efficient ways to kill!
[TL: mu = classification for area of fields, it is equal to 1/15 of a hectare. 1 hectare is 2.471 acres. so…. they’ll be rewarded with 0.8367 acres of land that’s good for farming.]
“He who kills a Lu Bu general shall be rewarded with a mansion, ten beautiful women, a hundred gold and three promotions in rank!”
“He who kills Lu Bu shall be rewarded with the title of Marquis, his standing shall be in the Nine Ministers and he will be granted a general!” Cao Cao went all in. He laid down grand rewards to kill Lu Bu.
“The Prime Minister have ordered. All army, prepare to engage. In a single incense worth of time, we are to besiege the city with all our might. He who kills a Lu Bu soldier shall be rewarded ten gold, five mu of fields and a promotion in rank. He who kills a Lu Bu general shall be rewarded with a mansion, ten beautiful women, a hundred gold and three promotions in rank. He who kills Lu Bu shall be rewarded with the title of Marquis, his standing shall be in the Nine Ministers and he will be granted a general!” One by one, the order was transmitted to the whole army. All the Cao generals were sharpening their weapons and wiping their hands. They all wanted to achieve greatness. They all wanted to be bestowed the title of Marquis.
Only Xu Chu was desolate. In today’s battle, his lord have already given the death decree. Lu Bu will certainly die and he will lose another worthy adversary.
“Kakakaka!” A sound of door opening that causes one to be uncomfortable. The city of Kaiyang. The city that that was filled with corpses. The frontal gate of the city that the Cao army was unable to break through even after spending twenty thousand troops have suddenly opened. A general donned in a golden armor and holding a trident came out on his horse.
“Lu Bu?!” Just like how Lu Bu could instantly recognize Cao Cao, Cao Cao could also instantly recognize Lu Bu.
“Did he decide to surrender seeing that he’s in a plight with no way out?!” Cao Cao laughed. Gates in the ancient times are very difficult to close once they’re open. Once opened, it’ll take a long time to close it. This amount of time was certainly enough for his army to rush past. Cao Cao had initially thought that he had to fight a siege battle. However, it appears that it would just be an annihilation battle now.
“Surrender? Impossible!” Guo Jia shook his feather fan. His wine had been hidden away by Old Cao. A Guo Jia without his wine was without doubt unhappy. “If he wanted to surrender, he would’ve done it a long time ago!”
“Then what did he plan to do?!” asked Cao Cao.
“He most likely planned to fight to the death!” replied Xu Chu. Xu Chu was also a general who’s at the pinnacle of first class. Thus, he knew of the loneliness of a general who belonged to the same pinnacle as himself - the bearing of rather die standing than to live kneeling.
“Fight to the death?!” Cao Cao also understood. This was indeed Lu Bu’s style. Lu Bu had once dared to attack the barracks of the eighteen warlords with his mere three thousand Bing Province Heavy Cavalries. Now that Kaiyang’s capture was just a matter of time, Lu Bu would rather exit the city and fight to the death.
Sure enough, Lu Bu held his trident against the sky and shouted toward Cao Cao. “Cao Mende! Lu Bu, Lu Fengxian is here! Come forward and let’s chat!”
“My lord, don’t go!” Guo Jia was concerned about Lu Bu’s actions. Was this man really the man who was known as the God of War? Was he really planning to fight to the death? Or was he planning something else? Just like how generals can’t understand Guo Jia’s stratagems, he too cannot understand the thinkings of generals like Lu Bu.
What Guo Jia was thinking of was whether or not this was a trap set up by Lu Bu. A trap to capture Cao Cao when he goes up to talk.
“Fengxiao, you needn’t be so alarm. With Zhongkang here, Lu Bu cannot possibly injury even my hair!” Cao Cao also knew what Guo Jia was thinking of. However, he wasn’t afraid. That’s because he knew that Lu Bu wasn’t the sort who will break faith and kill an enemy’s commander in talks in front of the whole army.
Before Guo Jia could respond, Cao Cao had already brought Xu Chu and some others and went forward on their horses. “Mende, how’s Xiapi?!” asked Lu Bu plainly.
Had Lu Bu also guessed the situation at Xiapi? Cao Cao wasn’t surprised. That’s because in Lu Bu’s camp, there’s the top advisor Chen Gong. If Chen Gong can’t guess that, then Cao Cao would’ve been surprised instead. Furthermore, Old Cao believe that Chen Gong played a major role in Chen Deng’s revolt.
“Can’t you tell that we’re preparing to go back?!” said Cao Cao as if it was an ordinary chat.
“You really wanted to kill this Lu Bu that badly?!” Lu Bu stopped beating around the bush and asked directly.
Cao Cao was also straightforward. “Cao cannot have a good night’s sleep if Fengxian doesn’t die!”
“Hahahaha, so, actually, as it turns out, Mengde you fears me so!” laughed Lu Bu.
“This isn’t fear?!” said Cao Cao. “I have long said, there exists but a select few in the whole world that could make this Cao cast sidelong glances. You, Lu Bu, are one of them. You are suited for being a soul of an army but aren’t suited for being the lord of a state! It wasn’t that I had to make things difficult for you, it’s just that you blocked my path! Therefore you had to die!” Cao Cao looked at Lu Bu straight in the eye with an overwhelming killing intent.
“Blocked your path?!” Mumbled Lu Bu. “Sure enough, like Gongtai said, Mengde, your ambition was certainly not small!”
“Well, Mengde ah, since you wanted my life, come take it! I heard that you even brought your elite Ferocious Cavalry with you. A whole three thousand heavy cavalries! I suspect you personally prepared that for this Lu Bu?!” laughed Lu Bu.
Cao Cao didn’t respond. Cao Cao indeed established the Ferocious Cavalry after having suffered defeat in the hands of Lu Bu’s Bing Province Heavy Cavalry. Their purpose was solely to defeat the Bing Province Heavy Cavalry. And thus, he brought them with him when he decided to attack Xu Province.
“Come Mengde! Use your most elite soldiers to have a final settlement with this Lu Bu!” Using his trident, Lu Bu pointed toward the three thousand heavy cavalries behind Cao Cao.
“To die at the hands of the Ferocious Cavalry, Fengxian, that’s a proper burial for you!” Cao Cao turned his horse around and returned to his army. Three thousand Ferocious Cavalry resounded the earth as they came forward.
The leading general was Cao Chun. In the past couple days of siege, the Ferocious Cavalry was unable to do anything. This had caused Cao Chun to be impatient to the extreme. And now the fate smiled at him. To actually be able to fight the final battle, Cao Chun was extremely happy. In his view, he believed Lu Bu to have nothing left. Even if his troops were all elites, they’re only infantries. How could the two legged soldiers possibly win against the four legged cavalries?
Not to mention the Ferocious Cavalry was an army of heavy cavalries. Although they aren’t suited for siege warfare, they’re overwhelming on the plains. Even if their enemies were ten times their amount, Cao Chun was still certain that he would be able to rip their enemies to shreds.
“Follow my lead!” shouted Cao Chun. “Sweep everything before us!” The Ferocious Cavalry began their charge, trembling the earth and the bodies of everyone present.
“This is the Ferocious Cavalry?! This is the strength of Heavy Cavalries?!” Although Guo Jia knew of the elite Ferocious Cavalry, he had never seen them in battle. Seeing the dust storm brought forth by the cavalries as well as that kind of grandeur, Guo Jia could not help but widen his eyes in shock.
“The victor was determined!” Cao Cao started laughing out loud. The Ferocious Cavalry have never once lost a battle on the open fields. Even if they’re against other Heavy Cavalries, Cao Cao believed that his Ferocious Cavalry would certainly not lose against them.
“Something’s amiss!” Xu Chu suddenly shook his head and began to feel a little worried.
“What’s wrong? Zhongkang?!” inquired Cao Cao while smiling. “For us to kill Lu Bu, Zhongkang have greatly contributed. If it wasn’t for you wounding this fierce tiger, how could we possibly be able to force him out?!”
Xu Chu did not respond to Cao Cao’s complement. Instead, he muttered. “the sound of activities are amiss!”
“My lord! I need to see my lord! Get out of the way!” A general donned in armor suddenly burst into the army tent. Wasn’t this man Xu Huang?
“Gongming?” Seeing the incoming person to be Xu Huang, Cao Cao had his guards let him pass. “We were just discussing the contributions in killing Lu Bu. Gongming, you have also contributed greatly!”
“No, no. My lord! It’s not regarding this!” Xu Huang quickly spoke. “these sounds of activities… there’s heavy cavalries in the vicinity!”
“Heavy cavalries? You meant the Ferocious Cavalry?! The Ferocious Cavalry are the elite amongst the elites, they’re comparable with the Western Liang Heavy Cavalry that Dong Zhou had!” Xu Huang was formerly a subordinate of Yang Feng. Thus, he was naturally very familiar with the Western Liang Heavy Cavalry.
[TL: Yang Feng was a cavalry general under Dong Zhou who was later defeated by Cao Cao. Xu Huang joined Cao’s camp after that.]
“Is it really my lord’s Ferocious Cavalry?!” doubted Xu Huang. “My lord, didn’t you only brought with you three thousand Ferocious Cavalry? How could they possibly have the grandeur of nearly ten thousand?!”
“Ten thousand?!” Cao Cao was also in doubt.
“My lord, please listen to the trembling of the earth. This is obviously the sound of ten thousand cavalries in the vicinity!” replied Xu Huang.
“Ten thousand cavalries?!” Cao Cao grew even more confused.
“That’s right! It’s certainly ten thousand cavalries!” Xu Chu came to it too.”These sounds of activities was too large, too great! It’s impossible for it to be originated from just the Ferocious Cavalry! There’s other cavalries in the vicinity!”
“There’s other cavalries other than our Ferocious Cavalry?!” Immediately, Cao Cao knew that the situation was bad. If it was like what Xu Huang and Xu Chu said that there’s ten thousand cavalries in the vicinity, then taking into consideration of the three thousand Ferocious Cavalry, there’s still seven thousand cavalries in the vicinity that wasn’t his troops!
“Lu Bu, Lu Fengxian. This Cao Chun had set to obtain thy head! After reaching the realms of the dead, don’t forget to tell Yama that it is I who sent you there!” As the distance from Lu Bu grew ever closer, Cao Chun eyes grew with ever more malevolent.
“Hehe. There are numerous people who wanted my life. Amongst them, who are you Cao Chun?!” With a confident smile, Lu Bu viewed the magnificent army with thousands of men and horses as if they were nothing.
“Kakakaka!” The gates of Kaiyang have all been opened. Under the reflection of the sun, the armors were glistering. One by one, horses came running out from within the city as if there was no end. Mounted atop the horses were ferocious soldiers donned in heavy armor and holding long spears.
“Cavalries?!” Cao Chun was abruptly startled. “Where did these cavalries came from?!”
Just like this, two powerful currents of steel collided with each other.