The Human Emperor Chapter 1093
Chapter 1093: The Nine Dragon Blood War Banner
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
Wang Chong smiled and nodded. "We shall not fail!"
The black-armored guard was clearly invigorated by these words, and the energy rising from his body became much gentler.
"Then I must trouble General with this matter!"
His attitude toward Wang Chong completely reversed and his entire body began to exude respect and deference.
The smiling Wang Chong quickly turned his eyes to the war banner in the black-armored guard's hand.
I didn't think that His Majesty would send out this legendary war banner. With this banner, everything will be completely different. I can finally use that formation.
Wang Chong's mind was whirring as he gazed at the old and mottled banner. Back then, he had spent enormous amounts of time and energy in search of this banner, but his efforts had turned up nothing. When the Sage Emperor passed, the most legendary war banner of the Central Plains had vanished with him, and no one else was able to find it. This was a tremendous loss for both Wang Chong and the entire Central Plains.
This time around, Wang Chong had wanted nothing more than to find this war banner. But the Central Plains was as vast as the sea and Wang Chong had no idea where to start. Finding it was far easier said than done. But Wang Chong had never expected that at the crucial moment of this war, the banner that he had so longed for would appear before his eyes.
The Nine Dragon Blood War Banner!
This was one of the strongest war banners of the Central Plains. This war banner was rumored to have originated more than one thousand years ago in the era of the Great Han Emperor Wu. At the time, the renowned Champion Marquis Huo Qubing1 had used this banner in a formation as he led the army in conquering the Xiongnu to the north. Over a thousand years, this formation had been modified through the generations, growing stronger and stronger. In the era of Emperor Taizong, it became the world-famous formation known as the Dragonspear Tiger Leopard Cavalry.
The Nine Dragon Blood War Banner was the core of this formation. In Taizong's era, it was the most powerful ritual tool of the Central Plains and the highest symbol of the Great Tang army's power.
These were the reasons Wang Chong had so tirelessly sought out this war banner.
"Li Siye, pass on my order. The Dragon Stallion Army, the Divine Martial Army, the Divine Prison Army, and the Tongluo Cavalry… have them all assemble at Talas's second training ground! General, time is short, so I must trouble you to go as well."
These last words were spoken to the black-armored guard holding the banner in one hand.
The guard stepped forward and resolutely declared, "This general will do everything in his capabilities to fulfill this duty!"
Outside Talas, between the two defense lines, cold and bleak winds howled through a world of stillness. The cavalry had been sent to the first defense line, and even the Mo Saber Unit had been deployed for defense. But the second training ground of Talas was a hive of activity, brightly lit. The Dragon Stallion Army, Divine Prison Army, Divine Martial Army… all the top-class armies had gathered and were undergoing intense drilling. There was only one day to complete this training, so Wang Chong could only rely on his superb abilities to prepare his men as quickly as possible.
An entire night was spent in training, the rumbling ceaselessly resounding through the city.
At the same time, the Arab camp was also tightly guarded. The battle during the daytime had been extremely intense, and even the Revelation Army had been deployed, yet the Tang had still emerged victorious, even inflicting more than two hundred thousand casualties. To the conceited Arabs who believed that victory would eventually be theirs, this was undoubtedly a massive psychological blow.
After experiencing the dreadful fighting power of the Great Tang, all the Arabs were acting as if they were facing a powerful foe, with tens of thousands of torches illuminating the Arab camp until it was as bright as day. More than one hundred teams were out on patrol, another sign that Arabia was taking the Great Tang very seriously.
On the outermost perimeter of the Arabian camp, there was no wind, but a torch suddenly flickered, its flame shrinking as if someone had blown on it. A group of patrolling soldiers saw this sight and slowed down, their eyes widening.
"It's too cold. Even the torches are starting to be affected."
"What's going on here? I feel like tonight is colder than usual."
Based on normal circumstances, it would be two months until the first snow, but right now, it felt even colder than if it had snowed!
The Arabs suddenly began to chat amongst themselves.
The change in weather had actually started several days ago, but for some reason, the temperature was beginning to drop even more rapidly.
An Arab horseman noticed something and pointed at another horseman, his voice fraught with shock. "Rafur! Look at your armor!"
These words attracted the rest of the horsemen, and all of the Arab cavalry around the torch turned to look at Rafur.
In the gloom, no one noticed anything at first, but eventually, through the light of the fire, they could make out that white specks had condensed on Rafur's armor.
The thin layer of crystals had everyone crying out in alarm. At almost the same time, they realized that their own suits of armor had been covered in a thin layer of frost. In addition, cold air was seeping through the chinks in the armor like needles and was entering their bodies. Even these Arab elites began to feel a slight chill.
The Arab horsemen stared at each other in silence.
At this time, a completely different scene was taking place in the center of the Arab camp.
"Bastard! A pack of good-for-nothings! You actually lost to a force of eastern infidel cavalry! What a disgrace!"
Aybak's furious bellows were penetrating through the tent and resounding in the night sky. Even the canvas of the tent was fiercely trembling from Aybak's roars. It was easy to see just how angry he was.
Aybak had not shown any of this on the battlefield, but once it was over, Aybak could no longer restrain himself.
The invincible Mamelukes of Arabia, with the assistance of the High Priest's Meteoric Star Metal and the Pharaoh Halo, had lost to the Great Tang's Wushang Cavalry in just a single encounter. Not even if Aybak had died would he have dared to believe such a thing.
The Mamelukes' golden veneer of invincibility had been completely shattered. This was utter humiliation for both Arabia and the Mamelukes.
"Milord, my apologies. We were careless and did not expect them to use such a trick against us."
Faisal and the other Mameluke officers lowered their heads as if they were frightened ostriches. They naturally understood how they had lost this battle, but the four thousand Wushang Cavalry attacking their flanks had simply been too unexpected. Even now, Faisal had not been able to shake off the shock of that sneak attack.
"Bastard! You're still arguing!"
Aybak's face was red with rage.
"Nothing but trash!"
An icy voice, devoid of emotion, echoed through the tent. This abrupt comment left Aybak, Faisal, and all the Mamelukes in the tent with unsightly grimaces.
Although Aybak was reprimanding his men, this was still an internal matter amongst the Mamelukes. With Aybak's status in the Arabian Empire, not even Abu Muslim dared to say such things, as this was tantamount to committing a capital crime against Aybak and the Mamelukes, an undoubtedly unwise course of action. But when Aybak and Faisal saw who had said those words, their rage was extinguished, and their faces adopted expressions of silent respect.
As the Arab War God and the supreme Governor of War, he could say anything he wanted in front of Mamelukes like Aybak and Faisal, and no one would even try to retort. The reason was simple: none of them could defeat him!
At this moment, Abu Muslim stood up and began to mediate.
"Qutaybah, now is not the time to blame each other. Each wave of reinforcements the Great Tang receives is stronger than the last, with that group of cavalry that appeared at the end even being able to stand up against the Revelation Army. I sense that the Great Tang Emperor might have sent his most powerful force. This is definitely not good news for us!"
The Revelation Army was Qutaybah's most elite force and one of the finest forces in Arabia. Even Abu Muslim had to admit this.
Any army that could contend with the Revelation Army and even suppress them was no ordinary force. At the very least, not even the Anxi Protectorate's Iron Wall Army had this kind of strength. Abu Muslim had determined that only the Great Tang Emperor could possess such a powerful army.
The Battle of Talas had lasted for many days with both sides committing countless troops. It only seemed proper for the Great Tang Emperor to have finally taken action.
Abu Muslim's words instantly silenced the tent. Even Qutaybah appeared calmer.
"The urgent task at hand is to discuss how we can defeat the Great Tang, annihilate its military power, and pacify the entire eastern world… Do not forget that His Majesty the Caliph is still awaiting news from us!" Abu Muslim sternly said.
Governor Osman suddenly spoke, his expression grim. "But if they continue to hide behind those steel walls, we will find it very hard to exert the strength of our soldiers, no matter how many we send. Besides that, they now have even more top-class soldiers than we do."
He had two top-class armies under his command, the Beheader Army and the Tiber Army, and both had suffered severe casualties in this battle. This was something that Osman had never even imagined before. The chess piece had already rolled off the board and was heading in an unpredictable direction. The arrogance of the Arabs had been completely dispelled, and even the ambitious Osman understood that they were facing a foe the likes of which they had never faced before.
"The Tang cannot hide behind their walls forever, and this war is definitely not something these Tang can stop with just a few steel walls."
As Abu Muslim spoke, he raised his head and scanned the crowd.
"Qutaybah, our greatest advantage right now is that we outnumber them in Great Generals. This together with our forces means that we still have a hope of defeating these infidels. But I will need you to cooperate with me tomorrow!"
1. Huo Qubing was a general of the Han Dynasty with a dazzling but short military career that spanned from the age of 18 to his untimely death at 24. He played a critical role in the campaigns to drive the Xiongnu, a nomadic confederation, from the Hexi Corridor, securing the Han Dynasty's access to the Western Regions.