The Human Emperor Chapter 599
Chapter 599: The Decisive Battle Wang Chongs Difficulties
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
"Great Minister, when exactly will we begin the general offensive?"
In the Tibetan commander tent, Geluofeng, Duan Gequan, Fengjiayi, Duan Yangyan, and all the Tibetan generals had gathered.
"We must wait a little longer. The time isn't right yet," Dalun Ruozan firmly replied.
A hint of anger appeared in the eyes of the Mengshe Zhao generals, but none of them dared to say anything.
Although both sides of the Mengshe-Tsang alliance had equal stature, everyone knew that the commander-in-chief of this battle was not anyone from Mengshe Zhao, but -Tsang's Great Minister Dalun Ruozan.
All the offensive plans were formulated by Dalun Ruozan.
"Has Great Minister still not found out the extent of that brat's resources?" Geluofeng asked, a frown on his face.
The boy of the Wang Clan had revealed an art of war completely different from what the other generals knew. Geluofeng had no objections if Dalun Ruozan wanted to sound the boy out. He was a ruthless and ambitious character, one who did not lack for daring. Once he agreed, he had essentially handed his authority over the battlefield to Dalun Ruozan, as well as the right to choose when the general offensive would begin.
Since he had already made the promise, Geluofeng would cleave to it and would never rashly intervene.
But in this probe, lasting from day to night, Mengshe Zhao had lost too many soldiers. The raid tonight had particularly infuriated everyone and was the reason they had all appeared here.
No one had expected that the Tang would dare to conduct raids in their current state. This was nothing but naked humiliation.
But if Dalun Ruozan had not gained any information despite the heavy price that they had paid, had still not found out anything about that boy, then Geluofeng found all this somewhat difficult to accept.
"I'm about done, but it's still lacking a little something," Dalun Ruozan lightly said, glancing at Geluofeng and smiling.
"Your Majesty, I know that you find all this difficult to endure, but think about it carefully. On the banks of the Erhai, your Whitestone Corps easily defeated the Annan Protectorate army. If this were still that Annan Protectorate army, then the forces Your Majesty dispatched yesterday should have been enough. Tibetan intervention should not have been necessary to defeat the Tang. But was that what really happened?"
Geluofeng and the Mengshe Zhao generals replied with silence.
Although it had just been a probe, the Mengshe Zhao army had still launched a vigorous offensive. Neither the Whitestone Corps nor the White Elephant Corps had held anything back. One could say that Mengshe Zhao had used the same level of forces that it had used in the battle of Erhai.
But the result was the exact opposite of what had been expected.
Dalun Ruozan was right on at least one point. Even Geluofeng had to admit that the Annan Protectorate army under Wang Chong was a completely new army.
"But Great Minister, when can we launch the attack?" Geluofeng patiently asked. "The Great Tang currently can't find any troops, but if we continue to delay, the advantage will no longer be on our side."
Mengshe Zhao had been able to defeat the Tang on the shores of the Erhai primarily by relying on their numbers. Three-hundred-thousand-some Mengshe Zhao soldiers, a mobilization of all the forces that could possibly be mustered, had battled against the 180,000 elites of the Annan Protectorate army who had left the protection of their fortifications and entered the plains, allowing Mengshe Zhao to win.
And now that Mengshe Zhao had allied with -Tsang, Geluofeng still felt that their greatest advantage was in numbers. It was precisely because the two armies combined had the absolute advantage in numbers, an army of four to five hundred thousand soldiers, that he felt such certitude in dealing with the not even one hundred thousand soldiers of the Annan Protectorate army.
One did not abandon the nearby to request aid from the distant, and these constant probes only served to wear away at their manpower, a voluntary abandonment of their advantage. The Annan Protectorate army should have been dealt with by a single surge, relying on sheer numbers to completely annihilate the Tang.
This was the best plan.
No matter what methods their opponent had, they would all be useless in the face of sheer numbers.
"Your Majesty, I know how many soldiers you lost last night and that your heart is brimming with anger. However, now is not the time to be angry. The opponent we are facing is far more formidable than we imagined."
Dalun Ruozan decided to hide nothing from Geluofeng.
"The art of war relies on confusing the false for real, the real for false. Although Zhangchou Jianqiong is praised as a Tiger of the Empire, even he would not have been able to force us into this state"
"Zhangchou Jianqiong is a cunning fox. If it were him, he would have never left the city. If he had left the city, then with our manpower, we would have united the southwest long ago."
Geluofeng cut straight to the point.
Zhangchou Jianqiong would never have allowed himself to be pushed into this sort of extremely passive and disadvantaged state. Given his personality, he would never even give his foes the opportunity.
If Zhangchou Jianqiong still reigned over the southwest, Geluofeng would not have had the sliver of a chance. It wasn't because Zhangchou Jianqiong would be able to hold the line, but because Zhangchou Jianqiong would never have given Geluofeng the chance to strike.
But Wang Chong was of a completely different style.
Someone who could let themselves fall to this level could never be some cunning fox like Zhangchou Jianqiong, and at this state, not even Zhangchou Jianqiong could do anything to salvage the situation. Yet the boy on the summit had done exactly this!
"Haha, although that brat truly is very formidable, you also shouldn't raise him up too high."
Dalun Ruozan grinned as he reached two fingers and grasped the edge of a cloth. With a tug, he revealed a model that had at some point been moved into the tent. The mountain on this model was particularly large and detailed. The steel walls on the mountain, the steel walls that had been removed, and the disposition of the armies were all represented on the model.
Upon seeing this detailed model, all the people in the tent were slightly moved.
When no one had been paying attention, Dalun Ruozan had managed to create this extremely detailed model in just a day and a night. This sort of observation power and efficiency left a deep impression on all their minds.
Dalun Ruozan chuckled. 'Know yourself and know your enemies, and you will never be defeated.' It wasn't like he had been doing nothing since the start of the battle yesterday.
"I've already gained a basic grasp of that boy's plans. The land of the southwest is one of a few low hills, with the majority of the land taken up by plains that are good for cavalry charges. Thus, he intentionally led us to this mountain. First, he can lower the charging speed of cavalry. Second, he can minimize the advantage of our numbers. No matter how many soldiers we have, there's a limit to the number of soldiers this mountain can hold.
"In other words, even if we have four-hundred-thousand-some soldiers, the number of soldiers that we can have attacking the mountain at the same time is limited."
Everyone in the tent furrowed their brows.
Although they hadn't realized it before, now that they carefully thought about it, it truly was the case that the boy had intentionally chosen this location.
"As for the brat's plan, it's very simple. He wants to utilize the terrain and the steel walls to transform this place into a fortress, allowing the Tang to fight the defensive battles they so excel in. As for his tactics, I'm sure you've all experienced them already"
Dalun Ruozan turned to the Mengshe Zhao generals.
"Just by relying on constant adjustments to his formations, attacking and retreating, he managed to break your formations. If you chase, your forces will fall out of formation. If you don't pursue, he just needs to try again."
"Then what do we do now?"
Geluofeng furrowed his brow. Wang Chong had already used this method to grind away nearly one hundred thousand of Mengshe Zhao's soldiers. Although this method was simple, there was no doubt about its efficacy.
And this brat had clearly attained a superb mastery of this tactic.
"Haven't you realized? Up to now, neither Wang Yan nor Xianyu Zhongtong has moved at all! Right now, it's not that I don't want to launch the general offensive, but I need a turning point, a suitable opportunity to launch the general offensive that will decide the battle. Otherwise, if we attempt to force the general offensive you saw the result yesterday. Are you telling me that you're willing to pay an even higher price?" Dalun Ruozan asked with a look at Geluofeng.
In the tent, all the generals of Mengshe Zhao were quiet, and even Geluofeng had nothing to say. This war involved a total mobilization of Mengshe Zhao's resources. The more than three hundred thousand soldiers represented the entirety of Mengshe Zhao's strength.
If they were all buried here, how could they deal with the Great Tang's attacks in the future? In addition, if their losses became too great, if they lacked the sufficient manpower, Mengshe Zhao would no longer be the ally of -Tsang, but the servant.
"Great Minister's meaning is?"
Someone suddenly spokenot Geluofeng, but the ever-silent Duan Gequan. From the moment he had entered the tent, Duan Gequan had not said a word. Truthfully speaking, Duan Gequan had done his utmost to conceal himself in this alliance.
There were many times when people forgot he existed.
But when Duan Gequan spoke, Geluofeng, Fengjiayi, and the other Mengshe Zhao generals would all very naturally accept his opinions. Not even Geluofeng would speak a word of dissent.
"Give me three days. After three days, I'll give all of you my answer," Dalun Ruozan said.
With this single word, Duan Gequan concluded the meeting.
A smear of white began to rise from the east. In the lands of the southwest, covered in the dark clouds of war, this was the only way of knowing that the sun had risen.
All was quiet over the vast earth.
Wang Chong sat cross-legged on the summit, the surrounding spiritual energy gathering around him and fusing into his body. This spiritual energy cycled through his meridians before finally striking an invisible barrier and coming to a stop.
"Ah, it's still a little lacking!"
Wang Chong gave a long sigh and opened his eyes.
The southwest war had already reached an incredibly intense level. Right now, Wang Chong could feel a certain impulse in the Mengshe-Tsang army, an impulse to launch a general offensive.
After their continuous probes and large-scale defeats in small-scale battles, this was a natural reaction, and it was also a method they would have to pursue. After all, their greatest advantage lay in numbers.
But it was precisely at this sort of crucial moment that Wang Chong found his cultivation stymied at the peak of True Martial Tier 9, unable to break through.