My Father in Law is Lu Bu - LightNovelsOnl.com
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“General. Are we going to face the enemy head on?” One officer inside Yangzhou’s s.h.i.+p asked.
“Why do you ask? Are you afraid?” Lu Xun asked back.
“Who is afraid?” The officer quickly replied as though he was a cat whose tail was grabbed. In the army, it was shameful to be afraid. With a red face, the officer replied. “General. If we were afraid, we would not have accompanied you to fight against the Jingzhou and Jiangdong allied forces.”
“But General. This time, we only have six s.h.i.+ps. We are not afraid of death but we should probably escape.” The only ones that could fight now were these six s.h.i.+ps and one thousand eight hundred people. If they were to lose it all here, the Yangzhou Navy could be considered as finished.
“Do you think we can escape?” Lu Xun shook his head. The iron chains were still blocking the way downstream and there were many injured soldiers at the barracks. There was no way out at all.
At the very least, they could go out in glory if they were to attack while choosing to withdraw would only make them prisoners at best.
“Then we fight!” The officer became determined. If they were all going to die anyway, they might as well die fighting. If they die fighting for Yangzhou, they would receive proper funeral, their family would be given money and land, and their children would be able to go to school. Besides that, their names would also be recorded in the Hall of Heroes in Shouchun to be wors.h.i.+pped by future generations.
“Open the gunports and ready the ballista. One shot is to be fired per command!” Although the Yangzhou Navy only had six s.h.i.+ps, they were just as imposing as their opponent.
“Brothers. We shall succeed or die trying. Though I, Lu Xun, have not been your commander for long, but I truly feel like I belong in the Yangzhou Navy! The Lord does not belittle us and provide us with everything. Who here has a child?”
“Me! I have a child!” One common soldier shouted.
“Li Erniu?” Lu Xun called out to the soldier.
“General remembers me!”
“Yes, I remember you.” Lu Xun laughed. “Li Erniu. Tell the others what your child is doing right now.”
“Right now?” Li Erniu thought to himself for a moment and then talked about his child. “He should be at school right now.” Li Erniu had previously followed Gan Ning to battle and sustained an injury. He almost turned blind. Though he was simple an honest, he was also a really good soldier. As a reward for his outstanding military service, his child was given the opportunity to study at school.
“Going to school to read books! How many of you have read books?” Lu Xun asked.
The soldiers all shook their heads. Only the rich could read and excel in life.
“Then after this battle, your children can all go to school. They may become generals or officials. Even if they fail to become those, they could become bookkeepers. They would no longer need to worry about going hungry. As for the rest who are still single, after this battle, I promise to find a marriage partner for all of you!” Lu Xun shouted. The Lu Family may be in ruins but he still had their wealth. He could easily take out a few hundred gold. Finding a woman for the soldiers also would not be too hard as the soldiers were currently a popular marriage candidate in Yangzhou.
“General. You also still single. How about you settle your own problems first!” One veteran soldier teased while the other soldiers laughed. The tension was already broken.
“What if we do not return?” One person asked pessimistically.
“If we do not return…” Lu Xun looked at the faces of the soldiers. “We will see each other at the Hall of Heroes.”
The troops knew what Lu Xun meant and turned silent. n.o.body wanted to die. Lu Xun may have boosted their morale but deep down they all knew that they would really die this time. Their s.h.i.+ps were damaged, their escape route was blocked and their bodies were exhausted. On top of that, they were facing an enemy many times their size.
“What is there to be afraid of? Even if we can’t win, killing two would be a profit. Even after we die, there would be people that remember us!”
“That’s right! What is there to be afraid of? At worst, we see each other again at the Hall of Heroes! There is good wine and good meat there!” The other soldiers started to become driven.
“General! We will make these Jingzhou women suffer even in death! We will make them go home crying!”
The soldiers then went back to their stations. All of them were full of fighting spirit. Unfortunately, all that fighting spirit was soon wasted. The moment Lu Xun was feeling deeply moved, one of the officers pointed at Jingzhou’s navy looked dumbstruck. “General! Look over there!”
“Hm?” Lu Xun furrowed his brows when he saw the officer lose his cool. However, his eyes quickly grew wide when he saw where the officer was pointing at. A white flag that was raised.
“What is going on?” Lu Xun asked skeptically. The Jingzhou banners were dropped into the river and raised white flags. They were surrendering. What kind of joke was this? Jingzhou had an overwhelming advantage so why would they surrender?
“General. Could it be a trap?” The officer beside him asked.
“A trap? Do they even need it?” Lu Xun laughed bitterly. Yangzhou only had six damaged s.h.i.+ps. If Jingzhou wanted to finish them off, they would not even need so many s.h.i.+ps.
“What then?” The officer was confused but Lu Xun also did not know the truth.
“General. They have entered our firing range!” The watchman reported.
The enemy were now within the effective range of Yangzhou’s ballista. On the other hand, Jingzhou’s ballista would not be able to damage Yangzhou’s s.h.i.+ps.
“Have the men stay alert and be ready to shoot if anything goes wrong!” Lu Xun gave the order. He did not know what the Jingzhou Navy wanted. Was their commander not afraid that morale would fall after raising the white flag? Won’t such an order cause a rebellion?
In that era, the people did not have any convenient ways to communicate. They had to shout. On the wars.h.i.+p, they used flags to pa.s.s orders. It was possible for the orders to be mistaken and cause morale to fall.
“General! Look over there!” The officer shouted towards Lu Xun. Several mengchong departed from Jingzhou’s s.h.i.+ps and approached them.
“Are they still thinking of using the mengchong to slow us down? Ready the ballista!”
“Wait!” Lu Xu stopped the officer’s orders. “Let them approach!” His eyes were good so he managed to spot someone that looks like a general aboard one of the mengchong. He thought it was odd for such a person to be on the mengchong. Even if the enemy general was not there, Lu Xun did not mind. There were too little mengchong for them to be a threat. Soon, the mengchong reached under Yangzhou’s s.h.i.+p.
“Is the Yangzhou Navy’s commander Lu Xun here?” A voice came from the mengchong.
“Hm?” Lu Xun wondered if they were here to persuade him to surrender.
“I am Huo Jun Huo Zhengfang.” The man introduced himself.
The fact that the enemy’s commanding officer was so close caused an uproar within the Yangzhou Navy.
“There are things I wish to discuss with General Lu Xun. Please allow me on board.” Huo Jun’s voice resounded clearly.
“General. We cannot allow this Huo Jun aboard our s.h.i.+p!” The officer beside Lu Xun advised. They have never seen Huo Jun’s skill in martial arts before but they knew that Huo Jun had defeated Han Dang and Huang Gai could not gain an advantage over Huo Jun. It was possible that such a skilled person was here to capture Lu Xun. At that time, the Yangzhou Navy would become helpless.
“Let him on board.” Lu Xun was of different opinion.
“Why? Does Officer Pu not have any confidence in my skill?” Lu Xun took out his sword.
The officer may not have said it blatantly but he truly did not have any confidence in Lu Xun’s martial prowess due to Lu Xun’s young age. “This officer did not mean that but this Huo Jun is highly skilled. The General should be careful.” As soon as the officer finished speaking, he saw a light and then saw something familiar on Lu Xun’s sword.
Officer Pu’s eyes grew wide as he rubbed his face only to find that his well grown beard was cleanly shaved.
“Officer Pu was actually so young!” Li Erniu could not help but exclaim. The officer whose face was usually covered in beard was laid bare. His actual facial features could be seen and it was found out that the officer wasn’t much older than Lu Xun.
“What are you all looking at!” The officer shouted in shame. When he had a beard, he could be arrogant and terrifying. But now he simply looked young. Some veterans even had children older than this officer.
“Officer Pu. You can now feel a.s.sured about my skills.” Lu Xun said with a smile. The officer can only nod back.
“Invite General Huo Jun onto the s.h.i.+p!” Lu Xun said as he kept his sword. After boarding the s.h.i.+p, Huo Jun looked around. He was speechless when he saw all the ballista that were hidden by the gunports.
Jingzhou’s equipment could not be compared with Yangzhou. Even their ballista, the weapon that had changed how war was fought was invented by Yangzhou. The moment Jingzhou started using the ballista, Yangzhou introduced new s.h.i.+ps. This was the first time Huo Jun could observe all these from a close range.
“General. Huo Jun is here.” After Huo Jun walked across the s.h.i.+p, he came face to face with a youngster.
“General Huo!” The two general greeted each other.
“General Lu is young and promising. How admirable!”
“General Huo as well! Why did General Huo personally come to my s.h.i.+p? If you want me to surrender, you’d best save your breath!” Lu Xun immediately said. He would never surrender. He didn’t even budge when Sun Ce asked him to surrender.
“Is General Lu not afraid of being completely routed?” Huo Jun asked.
“I am afraid.” Lu Xun admitted calmly. “However, I am even more afraid of disappointing Milord and the people of Yangzhou!”
“Is that so?” Huo Jun laughed. “General Lu Xu is loyal and righteous!”
“What about General Huo? Are you not afraid that you would not be able to return from my s.h.i.+p?” Lu Xun asked back.
“I am not afraid.” Huo Jun replied calmly as he shook his head. His actions made the nearby Yangzhou soldiers resentful. It was as though Huo Jun had blatant contempt towards them.
“Could it be that General Huo believe that my sword isn’t sharp?” Lu Xun started to feel uncomfortable and took out his sword. Was Huo Jun here to humiliate him with only about a hundred men?
“General Huo’s sword is sharp.” Huo Jun said as he placed his finger on the hilt of Lu Xun’s sword. He then pushed the sword to cut his own hair. “Truly a well made sword.”
“Hm?” Lu Xun could not help but pull his sword back.
“However, this sword is only meant to cut down your enemies. Not your allies.” Huo Jun said as he approached Lu Xun even more. His neck touched the sword and blood started to flow out.
“Step away from out General!” Yangzhou’s soldiers immediately surrounded Huo Jun the moment they saw blood.
Huo Jun simply continued to look at Lu Xun without fear.
“Put down your swords!” Lu Xun ordered his men.
“General Huo. If you are here to humiliate me, then congratulations. You have succeeded! If you want to persuade me to surrender, save your breath! We will only fight to the death!” Lu Xun kept his sword and then added. “Escort him back.”
“General! This is the best time to take Huo Jun! If we kill him, the Jingzhou Navy will withdraw!” Officer Pu advised.
“Kill Huo Jun?” Lu Xun had thought of this as well but he knew that Huo Jun must have a backup plan if he was willing to come alone. Besides that, Lu Xun had his own thoughts regarding the troops.
The officer’s words had made him hesitant. Lu Xun wanted the Yangzhou Navy to survive. He hoped that Jingzhou would not kill them all as at least half of the soldiers were from Jiangxia.
“If General Lu wants me to leave then I will leave. But for now…” Huo Jun said and then knelt down. “Military Advisor Zhuge Liang’s subordinate Huo Jun along with the Jiangxia Navy surrenders to General Lu Xun!”
“What!” Lu Xun was completely dumbstruck.
“Surrender?” Lu Xun could not believe his ears. No matter how experienced he was, Lu Xun was still not at a level where he could experience such a shock with a poker face.
“The Jiangxia Navy surrenders to His Highness the King of Shu!” The Jiangxia Navy on the opposite side of the river chorused. This was Li Yan’s handiwork.
Hearing this and seeing Huo Jun kneeling in front of him, Lu Xun started to believe them.
“Surrender?” Meanwhile, Yangzhou’s officers were still shocked. w.a.n.g Si, one of Yangzhou officer’s face was slapped by another. “Li Erniu! What are you doing?”
“Haha! I was checking if I was dreaming!” Li Erniu laughed and then looked at his hand. “I don’t seem to be dreaming.”
“If you want to know if it is a dream, slap yourself!” w.a.n.g Si shouted back angrily. He wanted Li Erniu to apologize but Li Erniu’s reply was. “I am an idiot. Even if I hit myself, it wouldn’t hurt!”
“I…! You…! Li Erniu! I am going to beat you up now!” w.a.n.g Si shouted and chased after Li Erniu.
Lu Xun did not bother to stop them as the soldiers were too tensed. They have fought several times within two days. No one would be able to endure it. The only reason they could fight was because they had faith that their family would be well treated after their deaths. That being said, they still feared death. Not needing to fight was a victory to them.
“We won!” The Yangzhou Navy cheered loudly. The more tense they were, the more tension was released.
“Why?” Lu Xun did not join them. He simply looked back at Huo Jun and asked.
“There is no why! We simply surrender!” Huo Jun stood up but seemingly refused to explain himself.
“Is it because of this?” Lu Xun took out a letter and gave it to Huo Jun. Huo Jun read the letter and laughed.
“General Lu. Are you loyal to your Lord, His Highness the King of Shu?” Huo Jun asked.
“Of course!” Lu Xun nodded. Lu Xun could achieve so much at his age because Liu Mang continuously searched for talented people and chose him. Lu Xun would naturally repay Liu Mang with his devotion.
“What if His Highness asks you to die?” Huo Jun suddenly asked.
“He will not.” Lu Xun frowned.
“I meant if.”
“If that happens?” Lu Xun thought for a while and then replied. “If the Lord wants his official to die, then his official have no choice but to die.”
“Haha. Then General Lu. Is there still any need to ask me why?” Huo Jun laughed. At this point, Lu Xun understood.
“Zhuge Kongming?” Lu Xun finally remembered who was Huo Jun’s master. Liu Biao would not give orders to Huo Jun. If Huo Jun was loyal to Liu Biao, this scenario would never have happened. After all, Liu Biao wanted to wipe out the Yangzhou Navy. It was to the extent that he even allied himself with his enemy, Jiangdong. So the only other person could be Zhuge Liang that Huo Jun had also mentioned earlier.
“Did the Lord arrange this?” Lu Xun thought to himself.
Thirty six thousand of the Jiangxia troops surrendered to Yangzhou. As Yangzhou’s barracks did not have enough s.p.a.ce, only ten thousand stayed to help out while the rest were sent back to the camp at Xiakou.