The Human Emperor Chapter 925
Chapter 925: A Clash Of Powerhouses
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
"Enough—let them go!"
Just when Wang Chong and Cheng Qianli were advancing in pursuit, Gao Xianzhi's voice rang out in their ears. His eyes were fixed forward, and there was a unique tone to his voice.
Wang Chong followed Gao Xianzhi's gaze and noticed two imposing figures riding through the vast Arab army, mounted upon mighty steeds and looming like mountains over an ocean. Not even the tens of thousands of Arab cavalry could suppress their edge.
Although this pair had not yet done anything, their mere existence exuded an enormous energy that filled the earth. Despite the distance, Wang Chong could still sense that their majestic energy was not something that he could match, even when transformed into the Godking Yama.
Wang Chong gazed at the muscular figure of the Arab commander-in-chief, adorned in a black cape and his body seemingly forged from steel. Wang Chong had never seen Abu Muslim before, but just a single glance had been enough to identify him.
Abu Muslim's eyes were cruel and dauntless, devoid of even the smallest hint of emotion, as if they were just cold blocks of steel. The energy around him was like the restless tide, endless and unceasing. Wang Chong could sense that he was even stronger than the Celestial Wolf Great General Duwu Sili, one of the top three Great Generals of the Western Turkic Khaganate.
Wang Chong suddenly understood why the Anxi War God had been beaten into such a state by the time he had arrived at Talas. This Arab commander's strength was even above Gao Xianzhi's.
"The one next to him is the Arab Deputy Governor Ziyad. Both of them are incredibly strong. If we advance any farther, Abu Muslim and Ziyad will enter the field. In our situation, both sides would probably end up heavily injured with little to show for it. If Huoshu Huicang and the others were to choose this moment to turn back around, we would be forced into an extremely passive position," Gao Xianzhi said.
Gao Xianzhi spoke with great apprehension when referring to Abu Muslim. It was obvious that he regarded his opponent of two months as a formidable foe.
The battlefield fell silent, the only sound being that of the two armies withdrawing.
Wang Chong and the Tang commanders stood in a distant standoff with the two highest commanders of the Arab army, none of them saying a word as they restrained each other.
"Dalun Ruozan, what's going on here? Why did you suddenly give the order to retreat? If you had given me just a little more time, I might have been able to kill that brat for you."
Meanwhile, as the enormous Arab army retreated, Duwu Sili was riding his Turkic steed back to the hills to the east of Talas. At the most intense moment of his duel with Wang Chong, he had been interrupted by Dalun Ruozan's signal and forced to retreat, leaving him extremely dissatisfied.
"Great General, do not be so hasty. Wang Chong is still besieged in Talas. If Great General wishes to fight and kill him, there will still be a chance. But if this battle continued, it would have been extremely disadvantageous for us," Dalun Ruozan softly said, his expression relaxed and calm, not at all affected by Duwu Sili's forceful tone.
Duwu Sili calmed down a little. Dalun Ruozan was a civil minister, and though he was not a very powerful martial artist, he had a unique aura about him that made even the most irascible of people calm down and regain their rationality. This was one of his unique traits.
Even Duwu Sili had unwittingly become affected.
"This one understands that Great General wishes to avenge Agudu Lan, wishes to pacify Ishbara Khagan's rage over the loss of two hundred thousand warhorses, but now is not the time to fight to the death with the Great Tang. Has Great General forgotten which side is the primary force against the Tang?" Dalun Ruozan said with a faint smile. As he clasped his hands behind his back, he began to naturally exude an aura of refinement and vigor, the aura of someone who could cast judgment on the entire world.
These words gave Duwu Sili a jolt, and he finally came to his senses, the rage in his eyes fading away.
"Haha, it seems that Great General has already understood. No matter what, we are not the primary fighting force against the Great Tang. Our paltry force could never defeat their troops. Has Great General not realized it? The Arabs have still not succeeded in breaking the first Tang defense line."
Dalun Ruozan took two steps forward and gazed at the receding tide of Arab cavalry.
In this battle, Huoshu Huicang, Dusong Mangpoje, and Duwu Sili had been so involved in their fights that they had not paid attention to the rest of the battlefield. Dalun Ruozan, on the other hand, had remained aware of the overall situation. He had paid attention to any change in the battle, wherever it was.
This battle was originally very simple. The Tibetans, Turks, and Arabs were to rely on their superior numbers and elite fighting forces to utterly crush the Great Tang. The Arabs and their several hundred thousand soldiers would serve as the primary fighting force, holding down the Great Tang, while the Tibetans and Western Turks would assist from the flanks. The whole thing should have taken just a few hours.
But this plain and simple battle that required little exercise in strategy and tactics had been wrought anew by the two steel defense lines Wang Chong had built. It was now a battle in which the Arabs 'assisted' from the flanks while the Tibetans and Western Turks became the primary fighting force.
This was completely different from what Dalun Ruozan and Duwu Sili had planned.
"You mean… the Arabs are using us to exhaust the Great Tang's strength?" Duwu Sili suddenly said.
"This isn't certain. The Great Tang placed all its heavily armored shieldmen, pikemen, and the rest of their defenses on the first defense line while their primary offensive force was used against us. This is a result of their painstaking efforts. But we can't reject your suggestion. After all, this is our first time working with the Arabs. We certainly aren't trusted allies. I presume that Abu Muslim would be all too happy to use us to weaken the Great Tang!" Dalun Ruozan lightly said.
If this battle became one in which the Tibetans and Turks made up the primary fighting force, his side would face a crushing defeat. The only ones to benefit would be Arabia or the Great Tang.
Duwu Sili fell silent for a moment, and then his face completely relaxed. Wang Chong did need to be killed, but Dalun Ruozan's words were reasonable. This Battle of Talas was too special, different from any other battle Duwu Sili had fought. Too many Great Generals, too many soldiers, and too many factions had gathered around the city of Talas.
Pulling a single hair could affect the entire body. Every side had to think very carefully about their decisions.
"You understand the Great Tang more than I do. I leave this battle up to you," Duwu Sili said.
Finally, Dalun Ruozan had obtained his approval.
But at this moment, a large disturbance began to rise from the western battlefield of Talas. Dalun Ruozan, Duwu Sili, Huoshu Huicang, and Dusong Mangpoje immediately turned to see what was happening.
Dalun Ruozan's pupils constricted, his heart stricken with shock.
"What is this boy up to?"
At this moment, Duwu Sili, Huoshu Huicang, and Dusong Mangpoje also spotted that thin figure bursting with energy at the first defense line.
"Abu Muslim!" Wang Chong loudly called out from the first defense line. Watched by countless shocked eyes, he rode out on the White-hoofed Shadow toward Abu Muslim. Wang Chong had not called out this name in the language of the Great Tang, but in a rough and accented Arabic.
These words immediately drew in the attention of all the Arab cavalry. This was the first time they had heard the name of their commander coming from this Tang commander's lips.
Nearby, Gao Xianzhi looked in surprise at Wang Chong. He was not proficient in Arabic, but he could recognize that familiar name from Wang Chong's words. However, neither he nor Cheng Qianli understood just what Wang Chong wanted to do by going out.
Wang Chong didn't turn his head, but he gestured behind his back that the pair should rest at ease.
The retreating Arab army became tinged with turmoil. Abu Muslim and Ziyad stared forward, a sliver of emotion appearing in their steely eyes. It was not very common for a Tang commander to know Arabic.
"The Abbasid Caliphate's Governor of the East, Abu Muslim, is here. Who is it that speaks? Report your name!"
Abu Muslim lightly patted the black Sassanian steed under him into a forward trot, going against the flow of the retreating army. His speed was neither fast nor slow, but for some reason, it felt like an enormous mountain was slowly moving.
Anyone who saw him would feel like a vast wave with all the ocean behind it was approaching them.
"The Great Tang Empire's Qixi Protector-General, Wang Chong!"
As he announced his name, Wang Chong's eyes flashed, his body exploding with a formidable aura. Although he was still not at Abu Muslim's level, Wang Chong at this moment was as brilliant as the sun, the moon, and the stars, his aura no less than Abu Muslim's.
The Wang Chong of this moment finally exuded the aura of the War Saint of the Central Plains!
One was the strongest War Saint of the Central Plains and the other was the most iron-fisted governor of the west. The two most brilliant and important figures of the empires of the east and west had crashed onto the meager city of Talas like two meteors crashing into the Earth, meeting and clashing for the first time!
Never in history had such talented individuals met!