The Human Emperor Chapter 612
Chapter 612: The Decisive Battle Wang Chongs Hidden Move
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
"Old Eagle, do you still remember Li Siye?"
Wang Chong suddenly turned his head to Old Eagle.
As if a clap of thunder had rung out in his head, the moment he heard Li Siye's name, Old Eagle immediately felt energy course through his body, the dark clouds in the skies parting. As if recalling something, Old Eagle became very excited.
Of coursehow could he forget Li Siye?!
When leaving the capital, his young master had not had so few people with him. And this was the mighty general who stood at his young master's side!
Upon careful recollection, he remembered that before they had reached the Erhai plains and joined up with Wang Chong's father, Li Siye had already taken some soldiers to carry out another mission.
But the continuous intense battles and the passing time had made him forget about Li Siye's troops.
"Young Master, you mean"
Wang Chong sternly nodded.
"The general who makes many calculations before battle is victorious and the one who makes few is defeated. Since -Tsang is so burning with ambition that they wish to use the strength of Mengshe Zhao and Geluofeng to deal with the Great Tang, they can't blame me for dealing with them. If they want to break relations with the Great Tang, then they should prepare themselves well for this break-up!
"War, to Dalun Ruozan and Huoshu Huicang, might only be victory or defeat in a single war or decisive battle, but this has never been the case for me."
As Wang Chong spoke, his eyes began to burn with an unprecedented brightness.
The Great Tang had its flaws and the Annan Protectorate army had its flaws, so how could -Tsang be immune?
He who was raised by Xiao He was cast down by Xiao He.
Dalun Ruozan had only focused on the weak points of the Great Tang, never realizing that his own side had its massive weaknesses that were even more severe than the enemy's.
"It should be about time. By tonight at the very latest, we should be seeing the result!"
As the others looked on in astonishment, Wang Chong stood up and looked to the west, speaking a sentence that none of them understood.
Strategies planned out in the campaign tent could decide victory one thousand li away!
Neither his father nor Xianyu Zhongtong understood that the true outcome of this war would not be decided here, or even on this battlefield. Not even Dalun Ruozan knew that Wang Chong had already set up another battlefield.
And unlike the battlefield here, on that battlefield, the Tibetans had been utterly routed!
And Dalun Ruozan had no idea.
War was cruel. This was a fact that every general needed to know. But as Wang Chong understood it, war was far crueler than anyone could imagine.
Li Siye! It's up to you now!
Wang Chong's mind turned through countless thoughts, but slowly, he began to calm down.
A confused sheep bleated over the plateau. It was surrounded by piles of rotting cow and sheep corpses. There were no wounds on these corpses, only the black mottling of disease.
Black smoke plumed from blazing fires. These pillars of smoke extended all the way to the horizon, making the place seem like the end of days had come.
In a place not far from this sheep, around the ruins of a tent, a group of black-armored cavalry with shining sabers and swords were currently keeping a close watch on their surroundings.
Leading them was a giant of a man, more than two meters tall. He was a head taller than a normal man, and his constitution was abnormally muscular and striking.
A cavalryman rode up behind that powerful man and suddenly reported, "Milord, this is the 107th batch we've encountered in these last few days. Starting from five days ago, we haven't been able to find a single Tibetan shepherd grazing their flocks. It seems that we've achieved the desired result. The plague has already spread across the entire part of the plateau ruled by the Ngari Royal Lineage. The only thing that awaits them is a massive disaster!"
"You find this difficult to bear?"
Li Siye sat on his muscular steed, his face emotionless.
The cavalryman gritted his teeth and nodded. The cavalry behind him shared the same expression. They were all elites chosen by the great clans, and their purpose had been to fight for these clans on the battlefield. Although they were not members of the army, all of them treated themselves as pure soldiers.
If they were fighting on the battlefield, they wouldn't have complained even if they died. However, their task this entire time had been nothing of the sort. As warriors who had very high opinions of themselves, they would have never done such a thing.
The only thing these elites had done in this period of time was slaughtering cows, sheep, and shepherds, and spreading the plague!
"All of you think the same?"
Li Siye turned to look at the other elite cavalry. All of the soldiers lowered their heads, as all of them shared the same thoughts.
A cavalry captain suddenly gathered his courage and asked, "Milord, do you not feel this way?"
Li Siye instantly fell silent.
This cavalryman was correct. He also had once doubted, had once found the task unbearable. And unlike the cavalrymen behind him, he was not only a proper soldier, but a commander in the regular army.
'A pure soldier' was his view of his place in society.
But it took only a few moments for Li Siye's eyes to clear up.
"In the past, I would definitely have been thinking the same thing as the rest of you."
Li Siye's voice was clear and bright, his first words immediately attracting the notice of his men.
"However, have you forgotten who we are? Soldiers! No matter who you were before, the moment you came to this place, entered this battlefield, you became soldiers, pure soldiers. You represent others, not yourselves. You represent the Great Tang!
"Let me ask, what is the most important thing for a soldier? Is it glory?"
The soldiers raised their heads and looked in a daze at Li Siye.
The most important thing to a soldier was naturally glory! Was this not the case?
"Milord, did you misspeak?" another cavalryman asked.
Li Siye shook his head, his thoughts on Wang Chong's message in the silk bag and the words he had once said to him. At that time, Li Siye had not treated things very seriously and had even jeered a little at Wang Chong.
But Li Siye no longer had these kinds of thoughts now.
"All of you are wrong. The most important thing for a soldier is following orders and loyalty to the Great Tang. When each one of you steps onto the battlefield, your individual wishes, your honors and disgraces, are no longer important.
"If the Great Tang is defeated, even if you manage to preserve your honor and die gloriously on the battlefield, what meaning would there be in that? But if the territory of the Great Tang is occupied by foreign kingdoms, that is the true disgrace. In contrast, what does it matter what you feel?"
Li Siye harshly spoke, his deafening voice stupefying all of them.
None of them had expected that the one who should have found this task the most unbearable would say these words. Yet none of them could retort. He was right. If a soldier died a glorious death on the battlefield but the war was still lost, what did the greatest glory matter?
Moreover, the southwest right now
-Tsang and Mengshe Zhao, these foreign kingdoms, truly had invaded the Great Tang's territory!
In an instant, all of them fell silent.
"Once soldiers enter the battlefield, they should no longer have individual reputation, individual wills, individual gains and losses All of these concepts should cease to exist. Our objective has never been to bring glory to any individual, but to defend the Great Tang, defend the empire behind us. Have any of you ever thought about what sort of sight would greet you if the southwest really was lost and Mengshe Zhao and -Tsang really did occupy this land?
"How do you think they will treat the people of the Great Tang's southwest? Will they act with a light hand and emphasize the glory of their soldiers? Let me tell you, if we don't win this war, what we'll see in the southwest will look exactly like this place, or maybe even worse!"
Li Siye's voice grew louder and louder, more and more excited.
As the soldiers listened, they slowly began to raise their heads in shock.
None of them had ever seen Li Siye so agitated, but none of them were able to refute his argument.
He was right!
If this war were lost, the southwest would become a slaughtering ground for -Tsang and Mengshe Zhao. Whether it was to establish their power or intimidate the people of the southwest into servitude, the Tibetans and Mengshe Zhao would definitely engage in a merciless massacre.
And the long war and stalemate with the Annan Protectorate army would have only inflamed their rage, which they would vent on the common people of the southwest. All of them understood this.
In this war, the Great Tang could not retreat.
A cavalryman shamefully said, "Milord, we" Before he could continue, the sound of galloping hooves broke in. A scout, waving his messenger flag, was quickly riding to their location.
"Milord! The Great Snow Mountain Holy Temple's people have come in pursuit!"
The mood instantly changed, everyone becoming nervous. Even the horses beneath them seemed to sense their unease, constantly whinnying.
All of them turned to Li Siye.
"Hmph, they came very quickly!"
Li Siye snorted, his expression frigid.
In order to deal with the Great Tang, Dalun Ruozan and Huoshu Huicang had mobilized all the soldiers that the Ngari Royal Lineage had built up over the last thirty years, emptying its lands.
The plateau was only home to some nomads and scattered tribal warriors, who were completely incapable of stopping Li Siye and his Wootz Steel cavalry. In all the time that had passed, Li Siye's forces had not encountered any significant resistance.
But Li Siye's forces had made far too great of a ruckus on the Tibetan Plateau. This was no battlefield, but an unprecedented calamity, one that would deal a terrible blow to the entire -Tsang Empire.
The results from Li Siye's forces spreading the plague were so severe that even the Great Snow Mountain Holy Temple, several thousand li away, was alarmed. It had dispatched a large number of experts to hunt Li Siye down.
Not even Li Siye dared to engage these experts of the Great Snow Mountain in a direct confrontation. Thus, he had long ago dispatched eagles to keep watch in the sky and scouts to keep watch in all directions.
On this flat plateau, even the experts of the Great Snow Mountain Holy Temple had nowhere to hide. Li Siye would often spot them when they were still many li away.
Li Siye patted his saddle and immediately led his soldiers away.
"It's about time for me to look at the next silk bag."
While riding, Li Siye opened up a silk bag that Wang Chong had given him before he left.