Zhu Jun saw that the advice

Zhu Jun saw that the advice was good

and followed it. As predicted the rebels ran out,

led by Han Zhong. The besiegers fell upon them as they fled, and Han Zhong was slain.

The rebels scattered in all directions. But the other two rebel chieftains, Zhao Hong and

Sun Zhong, came with large reinforcements, and as they appeared very strong, the imperial

soldiers retired, and the new body of rebels reentered Wancheng.

Zhu Jun encamped three miles from the city and prepared to attack. Just then there arrived a

body of horse and foot from the east. At the lead was one general with a broad open face, a body

as an alert tiger’s, and a torso as a lofty bear’s. His name was Sun Jian. He was a native

of Fuchun in the old state of Wu, a descendant of the famous Sun Zi the Strategist*.

When he was seventeen, Sun Jian was with his father on the River Qiantang and saw a party of

pirates, who had been plundering a merchant, dividing their booty on the river bank.

“We can capture these!” said he to his father.

So, gripping his sword, he ran boldly up the bank and cried out to this side and that

as if he was calling his men to come on. This made the pirates believe the soldiers

were on them and they fled, leaving their booty behind them. He actually killed

one of the pirates. In this way be became known and was recommended for office.

Then, in collaboration with the local officials, he raised a band of one thousand and

helped to quell the rebellion of one Xu Chang, who called himself the Sun Emperor

and had ten thousand supporters. The rebel’s son Xu Hao was also slain with his father.

For this Sun Jian was commended by Imperial Protector Zang Min in a memorial to the

Throne, and he received further promotion to the post of

magistrate of Yandu, then of Xuyi, and then of Xiapi.

When the Yellow Scarves rebellion began, Sun Jian gathered together the youths of his

village, some of the merchant class, got a troop of one thousand five hundred of

veteran soldiers and took the field. Now he had reached the fighting area.

Zhu Jun welcomed Sun Jian gladly and ordered him to attack the south gate of Wancheng.

The north and the west gates were simultaneously attacked by Liu Bei and Zhu Jun, but the

east gate was left free to give the rebels a chance of exit. Sun Jian was the first to mount the

wall and cut down more than twenty rebels with his own sword. The rebels ran,

but the leader Zhao Hong rode directly at Sun Jian with his spear ready to thrust. Sun Jian

leaped down from the wall, snatched away the spear and with it knocked Zhao Hong from

the horse. Then Sun Jian, mounting Zhao Hong’s horse, rode hither and thither, slaying as he went.

The rebels fled north. Meeting Liu Bei, they declined to fight and scattered.

But Liu Bei drew his bow, fitted an arrow, and shot their leader Sun Zhong, who fell to

the ground. The main army of Zhu Jun came up, and after tremendous slaughter,

the rebels surrendered. Thus was peace brought to the ten counties about the Nanyang area.

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Hearing these things Zhu Jun

Hearing these things Zhu Jun

pressed harder yet upon Yangcheng, and the

approaching break-up of the rebellion became evident. Then one of Zhang Ba’s

officers, Yan Zheng, killed his leader and brought the head in token of submission.

Thus rebellion in that part of the country was stamped out, and Zhu Jun made

his report to the government.

However, the embers of the Yellow Scarves still smoldered. Three other rebels,

Zhao Hong, Han Zhong, and Sun Zhong, gathered some thirty thousand rebels

and began to murder and rob and burn, calling themselves the avengers of Master Zhang Jue.

The court commanded the successful Zhu Jun to lead his veteran and successful

troops to destroy the rebels. He at once marched toward the city of Wancheng

which the rebels were holding. When Zhu Jun arrived, Han Zhong went to

oppose him. Zhu Jun sent Liu Bei and his brothers to attack the southwest

corner of the city. Han Zhong at once led the best of his troops to defend

the city. Meanwhile Zhu Jun himself led two thousand of armored horsemen

to attack the opposite corner. The rebels, thinking the city being lost, abandoned

the southwest and turned back into the city to help the defenders. Liu Bei pressed

hotly in their rear, and they were utterly routed. They took refuge in the city which

was then invested. When famine pressed upon the besieged, they sent a messenger

to offer to surrender, but Zhu Jun refused the offer.

Said Liu Bei to Zhu Jun, “Seeing that the founder of the Han Dynasty, Liu Bang the

Supreme Ancestor, could welcome the submissive and receive the favorable, why reject these?”

“The conditions are different,” replied Zhu Jun. “In those old days disorder was

universal and the people had no fixed lord*. Wherefore submission was welcomed

and support rewarded to encourage people to come over. Now the empire is united,

and the Yellow Scarves are the only malcontents. To receive their surrender is not to

encourage the good. To allow brigands, when successful, is to give way to every

license, and to let them surrender when they fail is to encourage brigandage.

Your plan is not a good one.”

Liu Bei replied, “Not to let brigands surrender is well. But the city is

surrounded as by an iron barrel. If the rebels’ request be refused, they will be

desperate and fight to the death, and we can hardly withstood a myriad of such

men. Moreover, in the city there are many times that number, all doomed to death.

Let us withdraw from one corner and only attack the opposite. They

will all assuredly flee and have no desire to fight. We shall take them.”

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Zhang Ba uses magic,

“Zhang Ba uses magic,” said Zhu Jun.

“Tomorrow, then, will I prepare counter magic in the shape of the blood of slaughtered swine and goats.

This blood shall be sprinkled upon their hosts from the precipices above by soldiers in ambush. Thus shall we be able to break the power of their shamanic art.”

So it was done. Guan Yu and Zhang Fei took each a thousand troops and hid them on the high

cliffs behind the hills, and they had a plentiful supply of the blood of swine and goats and all

manners of filthy things. And so next day, when the rebels with fluttering banners and rolling

drums came out to challenge, Liu Bei rode forth to meet them. At the same moment that the

armies met, again Zhang Ba began his magic and again the elements began to struggle together.

Sand flew in clouds, pebbles were swept along the ground, black masses of vapor filled the sky,

and rolling masses of foot and horse descended from on high. Liu Bei turned, as before, to flee

and the rebels rushed on. But as they pressed through the hills, the trumpets blared, and the hidden

soldiers exploded bombs, threw down filth and spattered blood. The masses of soldiers and horses in

the air fluttered to the earth as fragments of torn paper, the wind ceased to blow, the thunder subsided,

the sand sank, and the pebbles lay still upon the ground.

Zhang Ba quickly saw his magic had been countered and turned to retire. Then he was attacked on the

flanks by Guan Yu and Zhang Fei, and in rear by Liu Bei and Zhu Jun. The rebels were routed. Liu Bei,

seeing from afar the banner of Zhang Ba The Lord of Earth, galloped toward it but only succeeded in

wounding Zhang Ba with an arrow in the left arm. Wounded though he was,

Zhang Ba got away into the city of Yangcheng, where he fortified himself and was besieged by Zhu Jun.

Scouts, sent out to get news of Huangfu Song, reported: “Commander Huangfu Song had been

very successful, and Dong Zhuo had suffered many reverses. Therefore the court put Huangfu

Song in the latter’s place. Zhang Jue had died before Huangfu Song’s arrival. Zhang Lian had

added his brother’s army to his own, but no headway could be made against Huangfu Song,

whose army gained seven successive victories. And Zhang Lian was slain at Quyang. Beside

this, Zhang Jue’s coffin was exhumed, the corpse beheaded, and the head, after exposure,

was sent to Capital Luoyang. The common crowd had surrendered. For these services Huangfu

Song was promoted to General of the Flying Chariots* and the Imperial Protector of Jizhou*.

“Huangfu Song did not forget his friends. His first act after he had attained to power was to

memorialize the Throne concerning the case of Lu Zhi, who was then restored to his former

rank for his meritorious conducts. Cao Cao also received advancement

for his services and is preparing to go to Jinan to his new post.”

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Zhang Fei Whips The Government

Zhang Fei Whips The Government Officer;
He Jin Plots To Kill The Eunuchs.

Dong Zhuo was born in the far northwest at Lintao in the West Valley Land. As the governor

of Hedong, Dong Zhuo himself was arrogant and overbearing. But the day he had treated Liu

Bei with contumely had been his last, had not Liu Bei and Guan Yu restrained their wrathful brother Zhang Fei.

“Remember he has the government commission,” said Liu Bei. “Who are we to judge and slay?”

“It is bitter to take orders from such a wretch. I would rather slay him! You may stay here if you wish to, but I will seek some other place,” said Zhang Fei.

“We three are one in life and in death; there is no parting for us. We will all go hence.”

So spoke Liu Bei, and his brother was satisfied. Wherefore all three set out and lost no time

in traveling until they came to Zhu Jun, who received them well and accepted their aid in

attacking Zhang Ba. At this time Cao Cao had joined himself to Huangfu Song, and they

were trying to destroy Zhang Lian, and there was a great battle at Quyang.

Zhang Ba was commanding some eighty thousand troops. The rebel had led his army to a strong

position in the rear of the hills. An attack being decided upon, Liu Bei was the van leader. On the

rebel side a general of Zhang Ba, Gao Sheng, came out to offer battle. Liu Bei sent Zhang Fei to smite

Gao Sheng. Out rode Zhang Fei at full speed, his spear ready set. After a few bouts Zhang Fei wounded

Gao Sheng, who was unhorsed. At this Liu Bei signaled the main army to advance.

Then Zhang Ba, while still mounted, loosened his hair, grasped his sword, and uttered his incantations.

Thereupon began the wind to howl and the thunder to roll, while a dense black cloud from the heavens s

ettled upon the field. And therein seemed to be horsemen and footmen innumerable, who swept to attack

the imperial troops. Fear came upon them, and Liu Bei led off his troops, but they were in disorder and

returned defeated.

Zhu Jun and Liu Bei considered the matter.

Lu Zhi explained,

Lu Zhi explained,

“I had surrounded the rebels and was on the point of smashing them, when Zhang

Jue employed some of his supernatural powers and prevented my victory. The court sent down Eunuch

Zhuo Feng to inquire into my failure, and that official demanded a bribe. I told him how hard pressed we

were and asked him where, in the circumstances, I could find a gift for him. He went away in wrath and

reported that I was hiding behind my ramparts and would not give battle and that I disheartened my army.

So I was superseded by Dong Zhuo, and I have to go to the capital to answer the charge.”

This story put Zhang Fei into a rage. He was for slaying the escort and setting free Lu Zhi. But Liu Bei checked him.

“the government will take the due course,” said Liu Bei. “You must not act hastily!”

And the escort and the three brothers went two ways.

It was useless to continue on that road to Guangzong, so Guan Yu proposed to go back to Zhuo, and they retook the road.

Two days later they heard the thunder of battle behind some hills. Hastening to the top, they beheld the government soldiers

suffering GREat loss, and they saw the countryside was full of Yellow Scarves. On the rebels’ banners were the words Zhang Jue the Lord of Heaven written large.

“We will attack this Zhang Jue!” said Liu Bei to his brothers, and they galloped out to join in the battle.

Zhang Jue had worsted Dong Zhuo and was following up his advantage. He was in hot pursuit when the three brothers dashed

into his army, threw his ranks into confusion, and drove him back fifteen miles. Then the brothers returned with the rescued general to his camp.

“What offices have you?” asked Dong Zhuo, when he had leisure to speak to the brothers.

“None,” replied they.

And Dong Zhuo treated them with disrespect. Liu Bei retired calmly, but Zhang Fei was furious.

“We have just rescued this menial in a bloody fight,” cried Zhang Fei, “and now he is rude to us! Nothing but his death can slake my anger.”

Zhang Fei stamped toward Dong Zhuo’s tent, holding firmly a sharp sword.

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the seer made no reply,

the seer made no reply,

and again and again Cao Cao pressed the question.

then Xu Shao replied, “In peace you are an able subject; in chaos you are a crafty hero!”

Cao Cao GREatly rejoiced to hear this.

Cao Cao graduated at twenty and earned a reputation of piety and integrity. He began his career as

Commanding Officer in a county within the Capital District. In the four gates of the city he guarded,

he hung up clubs of various sorts, and he would punish any breach of the law whatever the rank of the

offender. Now an uncle of Eunuch Jian Shuo* was found one night in the streets with a sword and was

arrested. In due course he was beaten. Thereafter no one dared to offend again, and Cao Cao’s name

became heard. Soon he became a magistrate of Dunqiu.

At the outbreak of the Yellow Scarves, Cao Cao held the rank of General and was given command of five

thousand horse and foot to help fight at Yingchuan. He just happened to fall in with the newly defeated

rebels whom he cut to pieces. Thousands were slain and endless banners and drums and horses were captured,

together with huge sums of money. However, Zhang Ba and Zhang Lian got away; and after an interview with

Huangfu Song, Cao Cao went in pursuit of them.

Meanwhile Liu Bei and his brothers were hastening toward Yingchuan, when they heard the din of battle and saw

flames rising high toward the sky. But they arrived too late for the fighting. They saw Huangfu Song and Zhu Jun to whom they told the intentions of Lu Zhi.

“the rebel power is quite broken here,” said the commanders, “but they will surely make for Guangzong to join Zhang Jue. You can do nothing better than hasten back.”

the three brothers thus retraced their steps. Half way along the road they met a party of soldiers escorting a

prisoner in a cage-cart. When they drew near, they saw the prisoner was no other than Lu Zhi, the man

they were going to help. Hastily dismounting, Liu Bei asked what had happened.

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So Liu Bei set off and marched

So Liu Bei set off and marched

as quickly as possible to Yingchuan. At that time the imperial

troops were attacking with success, and the rebels had retired upon Changshe. They had encamped among the thick grass.

Seeing this, Huangfu Song said to Zhu Jun, “the rebels are camping in the field. We can attack them by fire.”

So the Imperial Commanders bade every man cut a bundle of dry grass and laid an ambush. That night the

wind blew a gale, and at the second watch they started a blaze. At the same time Huangfu Song and Zhu Jun’s

troops attacked the rebels and set their camp on fire. The flames rose to the very heaven. The rebels were thrown

into GREat confusion. There was no time to saddle horses or don armor: They fled in all directions.

the battle continued until dawn. Zhang Lian and Zhang Ba, with a group of flying rebels, found a way of escape.

But suddenly a troop of soldiers with crimson banners appeared to oppose them. Their leader was a man of medium

stature with small eyes and a long beard. He was Cao Cao, a Beijuo man,

holding the rank of Cavalry Commander. His father was Cao Song, but he was not really a Cao. Cao Song had

been born to the Xiahou family, but he had been brought up by Eunuch Cao Teng and had taken this family name.

As a young man Cao Cao had been fond of hunting and delighted in songs and dancing. He was resourceful and full of

guile. An uncle, seeing the young fellow so unsteady, used to

get angry with him and told his father of his misdeeds. His father remonstrated with him.

But Cao Cao made equal to the occasion. One day, seeing

his uncle coming, he fell to the ground in a pretended fit. The

uncle alarmed ran to tell his father, who came, and there was the youth in most perfect health.

“But your uncle said you were in a fit. Are you better?” said his father.

“I have never suffered from fits or any such illness,” said Cao Cao. “But I have lost my

uncle’s affection, and he has deceived you.”

thereafter, whatever the uncle might say of his faults, his father paid no heed.

So the young man GREw up licentious and uncontrolled.

A man of the time named Qiao Xuan said to Cao Cao, “Rebellion is at hand, and

only a man of the GREatest ability can succeed in restoring tranquillity. That man is yourself.”

And He Yong of Nanyang said of him, “the dynasty of Han is about to

fall. He who can restore peace is this man and only he.”

Cao Cao went to inquire his future of a wise man of Runan named Xu Shao.

“What manner of man am I?” asked Cao Cao.

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When weapons were ready,

When weapons were ready, the

troop, now five hundred strong,

 

marched to Commander Zhou Jing, who presented them to Imperial Protector Liu Yan.

When the ceremony of introduction was over, Liu Bei declared his

ancestry, and Liu Yan at once accorded him the esteem due to a relation.

Before many days it was announced that the rebellion had actually broken out, and a Yellow Scarves chieftain, Cheng Yuanzhi, had invaded the region with a body of fifty thousand rebels. Liu Yan

bade Zhou Jing and the three brothers to go out to oppose them with the five hundred troops. Liu Bei joyfully undertook to lead the van and marched to the foot of the Daxing Hills where they saw

the rebels. The rebels wore their hair flying about their shoulders, and their foreheads were bound with yellow scarves.

When the two armies had been drawn up opposite each other, Liu Bei rode to the front, Guan Yu to his left, Zhang Fei to his right.

Flourishing his whip, Liu Bei began to hurl reproaches at the rebels, crying, “O malcontents! Why not dismount and be bound?”

their leader Cheng Yuanzhi, full of rage, sent out one general, Deng Mao, to begin the battle. At once rode forward Zhang Fei, his serpent halberd poised to strike. One thrust and Deng Mao rolled

off his horse, pierced through the heart. At this Cheng Yuanzhi himself whipped up his steed and rode forth with sword raised ready to slay Zhang Fei. But Guan Yu swung up his ponderous

GREen-dragon saber and rode at Cheng Yuanzhi. At the sight, fear seized upon Cheng Yuanzhi, and before he could defend himself, the great saber fell, cutting him in halves.

After the celebrations in honor of victory were over, Commander Zhou Jing proposed to return to Youzhou.

But Liu Bei said, “We are informed that Imperial Commander Lu Zhi has been struggling with a horde of rebels led

by Zhang Jue at Guangzong. Lu Zhi was once my teacher, and I want to go help him.”

So Liu Bei and Zhou Jing separated, and the three brothers with their troops made their way to Guangzong. They found Lu Zhi’s camp,

were admitted to his presence, and declared the reason of their coming. The Commander received them with GREat joy, and they remained with him while he made his plans.

At that time Zhang Jue’s one hundred fifty thousand troops and Lu Zhi’s

fifty thousand troops were facing each other. Neither had had any success.

Lu Zhi said to Liu Bei, “I am able to surround these rebels here. But the other two brothers, Zhang Ba and Zhang Lian, are strongly entrenched opposite

Huangfu Song and Zhu Jun at Yingchuan. I will give you a thousand more troops, and with these you can go to

find out what is happening, and we can then settle the moment for concerted attack.”

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All three being of one mind, next day

All three being of one mind, next day

“I am Guan Yu,” replied he. “I am a native of the east side of the river, but I have been a fugitive on the waters for some five years,

because I slew a ruffian who, since he was wealthy and powerful, was a bully. I have come to join the army here.”

then Liu Bei told Guan Yu his own intentions, and all three went away to Zhang Fei’s farm where they could talk over the grand project.

Said Zhang Fei, “the peach trees in the orchard behind the house are just in full flower. Tomorrow we will institute a sacrifice there and

solemnly declare our intention before Heaven and Earth, and we three will swear brotherhood and unity of aims and sentiments: Thus will we enter upon our GREat task.”

Both Liu Bei and Guan Yu gladly aGREed.

All three being of one mind, next day they prepared the sacrifices, a black ox, a white horse, and wine for libation. Beneath the smoke of the incense burning on the altar, they bowed their heads and recited this oath:

“We three——Liu Bei, Guan Yu, and Zhang Fei——though of different families, swear brotherhood, and promise mutual help to

one end. We will rescue each other in difficulty; we will aid each other in danger. We swear to serve the state and save the people. We ask not the same day of birth, but we seek to die together. May Heaven, the all-ruling, and Earth, the all-producing, read our hearts. If we turn aside from righteousness or forget kindliness, may Heaven and Human smite us!”

they rose from their knees. The two others bowed before Liu Bei as their elder brother, and Zhang Fei was to be the youngest of the trio.

This solemn ceremony performed, they slew other oxen and made a feast to which they invited the villagers. Three hundred joined them, and all feasted and drank deep in the Peach Garden.

the next day weapons were mustered. But there were no horses to ride. This was a real grief. But soon they were cheered by the arrival of two horse dealers with a drove of horses.

“Thus does Heaven help us!” said Liu Bei.

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Liu Bei was twenty-eight when the outbreak

Liu Bei was twenty-eight when the outbreak

As a child, Liu Bei played with the other village children beneath this tree, and he would climb up into it, saying, “I am the Son of Heaven,

and this is my chariot!” His uncle, Liu Yuanqi, recognized that Liu Bei was no ordinary boy and saw to it that the family did not come to actual want.

When Liu Bei was fifteen, his mother sent him traveling for his education. For a time he served Zheng Xuan and Lu Zhi as masters. And he became GREat friends with Gongsun Zan.

Liu Bei was twenty-eight when the outbreak of the Yellow Scarves called for soldiers. The sight of the notice saddened him, and he sighed as he read it.

Suddenly a rasping voice behind him cried, “Sir, why sigh if you do nothing to help your country?”

Turning quickly he saw standing there a man about his own height, with a bullet head like a leopard’s, large eyes, a swallow pointed chin,

and whiskers like a tiger’s. He spoke in a loud bass voice and looked as irresistible as a dashing horse. At once Liu Bei saw he was no ordinary man and asked who he was.

“Zhang Fei is my name,” replied the stranger. “I live near here where I have a farm; and I am a wine seller and a butcher as

well; and I like to become acquainted with worthy people. Your sighs as you read the notice drew me toward you.”

Liu Bei replied, “I am of the Imperial Family, Liu Bei is my name. And I wish I could destroy these Yellow Scarves and restore peace to the land, but alas! I am helpless.”

“I have the means,” said Zhang Fei. “Suppose you and I raised some troops and tried what we could do.”

This was happy news for Liu Bei, and the two betook themselves to the village inn to talk over the project. As they were drinking,

a huge, tall fellow appeared pushing a hand-cart along the road. At the threshold he halted and entered the inn to rest awhile and he called for wine.

“And be quick!” added he. “For I am in haste to get into the town and offer myself for the army.”

Liu Bei looked over the newcomer, item by item, and he noted the man had a huge frame, a long beard, a vivid face like an apple,

and deep red lips. He had eyes like a phoenix’s and fine bushy eyebrows like silkworms. His whole appearance was dignified and awe-inspiring. Presently, Liu Bei crossed over, sat down beside him and asked his name.

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