Chapter 316 Guarding Respective Strongholds
Zhuge Liang turned to look at Lyu Bu again and said, “General Fengxian, you are going to Hanguguan, a critical strategic point where we fought.”
“It neighbors a plateau in the west, a deep valley in the east, the Qinling Mountains in the south, and the Yellow River in the north. Almost all the alien invasions in the history of Hua Xia started from here on. I’m afraid you will encounter a large number of enemies.”
“I will mobilize ten thousand Dark Steel Soldiers and a medium-sized Eight Diagram Tactics array, hoping you can hold at the most ancient impregnable pass.”
Hearing his words, Lyu Bu was slightly stunned, for he had fought on Hanguguan before. At this point, he seemed to have returned to the troubled times, when he was clad in his armor and holding the double-bladed halberd in his hand.
It reminded him of the scene in which he had been riding a winged steed and while preparing to take the field. Time and tide waited for no man. In the blink of an eye, thousands of years had passed and all the past events had been buried. Even the loftiest heroes had all turned into loess.
Thinking of this, he could not help shaking his head with a smile, and then said resolutely, “I will go, even if I were to face millions of enemies!”
Hearing his words, Zhuge Liang smiled and nodded. He looked at the group of young talents in front of him and said as he gently waved his feather fan, “Changge, Lyu Hao, you need to go to Tongguan together.”
“This pass is faced with Shanxi across the Yellow River in the north and borders Henan and Hangu in the east. Moreover, the Yellow River and the Wei River meet there. It’s a major traffic lifeline in Hua Xia, which cannot be lost.”
“Otherwise, the alien army will get through this pass and reach the three major provinces. At that moment, everyone will be plunged into misery and suffering.”
Zhao Changge and Lyu Hao saluted and said firmly, “We will obey your order, Prime Minister! We will defend Tongguan to the last breath!”
Zhuge Liang nodded slowly said as he pointed to Feng Tianming, “Tianming, you and Chihiro need to go to Jiange, to especially guard Jianmenguan.”
“Due to the unique location of Hanzhong, the Bashan Mountains form the most important barrier of Sichuan. As for Jiange, it is of great significance among various passes, so it is regarded as the North Gate of Sichuan.”
“As long as we defend Jiange, we defend Sichuan. Besides, the most vital pass in Jiange is Jianmenguan. Being the most forbidding pass along the path to Sichuan, it is very easy for you to defend with the help of the natural barriers.”
“The 72 peaks of Jianmen are high and steep, with bluestone cliffs on both sides. Taking advantage of the Shushan Sword Array, we must pose a threat to the alien troops. You, therefore, can’t get out of the pass in any circumstance; you’ll have to meet the enemy head-on.”
“My Eight Diagram Tactics have also covered there, and it can offer support to you at any time. You need to intercept some enemies to take the load off all the other battlefields.”
“As the Prime Minister commands!”
“I will definitely complete the mission!”
Feng Tianming and Misawa Chihiro responded seriously in succession; their fighting spirit was greatly stimulated.
“Xuzhou, as the junction of four provinces, is the intersection of two key roads. It connects the strategic passages of the Eastern, Central and Southeast coastal areas. Furthermore, it is the gateway of the ancient capital Jinling. That location has a strong significance.”
“It neighbors Huaihai in the east, the Central Plains in the west, the Yangze-Huaihe River basin in the south and Shandong is in the north. It has always been a critical strategic point since ancient times, which is easy for you to defend but difficult to attack. What you need to do is to guard it.”
“Xuzhou is a place where dragons have soared for ages and it has been the hometown of their emperors. There have been eleven emperors born there since ancient times; it’s a place full of Dragon Qi and aura because of it.”
“With the help of my Eight Diagram Tactics, the defense there can be completely strengthened. Providing that you don’t take the initiative to attack, defending against enemies should be a matter of course.”
Zhuge Liang waved his feather fan, then he turned to look at Leng Yueyan and Ning Zhe. He said, “My two younger friends, are you qualified to guard this place?”
“Don’t worry, Prime Minister. I will defend Xuzhou to the death!” Leng Yueyan said determinedly.
“I won’t let the evil enemies step into Hua Xia as long as I am standing,” Ning Zhe also said seriously.
Zhuge Liang nodded slowly, then he turned to address Yu Wude and Shangguan Yiyi, “Have you mastered the Eight Diagram Tactics?”
“I’m already proficient in activating it. Please rest assured, senior Marquis Wu,” Shangguan Yiyi said with a nod.
“So am I. I’ve memorized all the changes of the array. I’m currently studying how to connect the Third Divine Array and the Second Killing Array with it,” Yu Wude said as he held his chin.
Hearing this, Zhuge Liang slightly raised his eyebrows and said, “I’m relieved by your words. I originally didn’t feel assured, but my plan seems feasible in view of your attainments in this array.”
“Senior, just tell me whenever you have any ideas, I will spare no efforts to fulfill them,” Yu Wude said with a smile.
Zhuge Liang nodded slowly and said as he waved his feather fan, “Hanzhong is the real lifeblood of Hua Xia. If our enemies want to take over the entire Sichuang, they need to dominate Hanzhong.”
“Once they control Hanzhong, they can enter Sichuan in the southwest and Gansu in the northwest, to invade Xi’an and threaten the Central Plains northeast. After that, they can go straight to Xiangyang in the southeast. The strategic position of that place is unparalleled!”
“This is also the reason why I recommended Sichuan to you at the very beginning, which enjoys a good location. Moreover, being a basin, it stores up abundant natural resources and is a fine place to rehabilitate.”
“Honored as a land of abundance, Sichuan is the most vital place for grain production in Hua Xia. Since it is of great importance and is located at the rear of the main battlefield, it is the best choice to support the whole country at the highest speed.”
“You might even say that if you want to usurp Hua Xia, you have to take over Sichuan, the treasured land!”
“But Jiange is not the only strategic point on the way to Sichuan, and Hanzhong is also a place to be reckoned with. Although the Eight Diagram Tactics I cast has covered the whole area, I’m still unable to completely control everything.”
“Therefore, I need one person to assist in guarding Hanzhong. With a huge array in the middle, two small arrays in Jiange and Hanzhong respectively, we can make use of the three arrays in conjunction to defend Sichuan to the very last.”
Even if those who didn’t have a good grasp of military tactics understood the importance of Sichuan after hearing his explanation. Indeed, that place was rich in resources; it was Hua Xia’s lifeline.
In addition, given the dense population, it was also of great military importance at present. All of Hua Xia would fall into panic if the place was lost during the upcoming struggle.
People would encounter those “enemies” whom they had never seen before. In a battle between cultivators, even the present-day mortals with advanced technology were impossible to defend.
With regards to a peak Greater Power, he would be able to release a power as strong as a nuclear bomb, as long as he exerted all his strength to exhibit a formidable Tao Law.
Especially the battles between genius cultivators like Wang Bugui and the strong emperors like Ying Zheng; those would always result in the destruction of a whole province.
Their shocking clash on that day had almost destroyed the entire Yandu City, as well as some cities around it. If mortals were to encounter them, they would be less than dirt in comparison.
Other than using nuclear weapons, there was no other way to fight against such Tao Laws. As for this kind of anti-human weapons, how could they use them that easily? Moreover, the population of Hua Xia was so dense that doing so was tantamount to committing suicide.
Therefore, only cultivators were qualified to guard important passes, trying their best to prevent foreign enemies from invading Hua Xia. As to the matter of Sichuan, the lifeblood of the country could not be lost.
“Prime Minister, what do you mean?” Yu Wude asked.
Zhuge Liang frowned and said, “My presumptuous request is to ask Miss Shangguan to stay in Hanzhong and guard this place with us. Once we maintain stability on the battlefield, I’ll be able to offer the necessary support to all the regions of Hua Xia.”
After he finished speaking, he waved his feather fan and looked at Yu Wude. After all, Shangguan Yiyi had a close relationship with him. Even if she agreed to this decision, he still had to ask for Yu Wude’s advice.
Yu Wude knitted his brows tightly. After pondering for a while, he looked at his lover beside him and said, “Yiyi, it’s all up to you.”
“It’s a matter concerning the survival of Hua Xia, so we should absolutely obey the Prime Minister’s arrangements,” Shangguan Yiyi said slowly.
Then she rolled her eyes and patted the serious looking Yu Wude. She said with a smile, “Don’t worry, I’m not weaker than you!”
“I’m bound to defend Hanzhong. Just guard the place you’re in charge of. If not, I’ll be the first one to strangle you!”
After that, she waved her fist several times at Yu Wude, and then raised her eyebrows as she hummed.
“Haha, who am I? I’m Yu Wude, the peerless hero! A genius in arrays that has not been seen for thousands of years! How will I make a mistake in the place I’m responsible of? Don’t worry, nothing will go wrong!”
“Wait for me to come back. I will deliver my divorce petition if I find out that you failed to fulfil your duty.”
Yu Wude blew his trumpet joyfully, really annoying Shangguan Yiyi. She was so angry that he grabbed him by the ear and said in anger, “You Fatty! I’m going to divorce you now!”
“I will ever see you again!”
“Hey! Darling, it’s my fault. I was wrong… You’re my heart, my liver, and three-quarters of my fat!”
“What?! You actually compared me to that dirty thing! Are you suggesting that I’m fat?” Shangguan Yiyi became furious and added strength at the same time.
“Hey! Be gentle! I was wrong, I was wrong! I’ll never do it again!” Yu Wude could not stop wailing, and his body was so bent that he was about to kneel on the ground.
Everyone present was speechless. There was only a common thought in their minds: aside from being a stupid couple, Yu Wude and Shangguan Yiyi had to be the funniest people in the world.
“We should be serious at times like this!”
As an august voice interrupted their antics, a chilly aura instantly rushed up on their backs. They stopped fighting immediately and lowered their heads to peep at Ying Zheng.
He was the most powerful man present. After all, this emperor was well-known for being discriminating in rewards and punishment. Once a person violated his rules, he would come to a truly sticky end.