Chapter 263- Battle of Changping
After sending off the members of Shanhai Alliance, Ouyang Shuo started to make some final preparations for his army.
The army that he sent included the Guards regiment led by Wang Feng, the 2nd regiment led by Lin Yi, the light armored cavalry’s 4th regiment led by Luo Shixin, as well as the independent regiment’s light armored cavalry led by Shao Bu.
The 1st regiment guarded the city west camp, the 3rd regiment guarded the city east camp. Sun Chuan Lin led the 5th regiment to guard the city north camp, and the remaining 500 cavalry from the independent regiment guarded the city north camp.
Of course the two generals Shi Wanshui and Er'Lai would follow them to battle.
As they were all cavalry, they were able to all gather in the main camp within a day. As for logistics, Ouyang Shuo took 200 thousand military grain pills, which would last them 20 days. If one counted the war horses, then it would last 10 days.
Ouyang Shuo wanted to bring more, but firstly, the storage bag had a limited space, and secondly, the production speed of the military factory was limited. These 200 thousand pills were 1.5 months of hard work.
Hence, unless Qin didn't have enough food, Ouyang Shuo wouldn't make use of these.
Based on the calculation of one military grain pill being 1 copper, 200 thousand would equal 2000 gold. Adding the 10 thousand gold in teleportation costs, before the battle began, he had already spent 12 thousand. If he didn't gain anything from this battle, he would’ve lost a lot.
Gaia first year 11th month 14th day, 9 AM
The system notification sounded punctually.
"System notification: 262 B.C. the Qin army attacked the Han and took over Yewang. Their king was willing to give up Shangdou to stop the Qin troops. However, the shogun of the prefecture wasn't willing to surrender to the Qin, and instead sent someone to surrender to the Zhao instead. Zhao King naturally happily accepted them. The Qin King was furious and ordered his troops to attack Shangdou while the Zhao King sent troops to defend it, resulting in a standstill at Changping."
"In the third year, the Qin sent a large army to attack the Zhao. In the 7th month, the Zhao sent Zhao Kuo to lead the troops. The Qin secretly appointed Baiqi as the general and he attacked Zhao Kuo's weakness of being too arrogant. He acted like he was losing and backed off, drawing the Zhao troops out of their base and into a trap. They were surrounded and easily slaughtered, gaining victory for the Qin. The 3rd historical battle- Battle of Changping, officially begins!"
Shanhai City's 10 thousand elite cavalry were gathered in the square with all their equipment.
As usual, he had to verify requirements to join the battle, the number of people joining, and choose a camp.
"System Notification: Congratulations Player Qiyue Wuyi for activating battle teleportation. Teleporting 10 thousand men, deducting 10 thousand gold in fees."
"System Notification: Commencing Teleportation!"
After a short distortion in space, Ouyang Shuo and his troops appeared in the Changping battlefield.
"System Notification: Welcome player Qiyue Wuyi to the base of the Qin- Guanglang City."
On 262 B.C. the Qin gained the important city of the Han- Yewang.
It was a crucial point where the people in the Shangdou prefecture of the Han could contact those south of the Yellow River, who were also of the Han.
Losing Yewang meant that communications north of Taihang were cut off from the the capital, Xingzhen. As Shangdou was a region with few people, and to them it was just dead land, they decided to exchange it for peace and give it up to the Qin. However the shogun Feng Ting gave it to the Zhao instead, causing a war between Zhao and Qin over Shangdou, starting the Battle of Changping.
At that point, the Zhao court had an intense debate on whether or not to accept Shangdou, the king of the plains Zhaosheng felt that not using a single soldier and getting Shangdou was a great deal and he supported accepting it; the King of Pingyang Zhaobao felt that fighting against Qin would cause them to lose, so he resolutely disagreed against the deal.
Zhao Kuo on the other hand analyzed that the Zhao had to accept Shangdou.
If the Qin gained Shangdou and took control of Juhu Pass, and took over the 4th pass in the east, the Fukou Pass at Taixing, they could easily attack the capital of Zhao, Handan.
Hence because of that, Shangdou was useless to Han, but it was a matter of life or death for the Zhao. The Qin were on the surface fighting the Han for Shangdou, but in truth they were making preparations to attack the Zhao. Hence, no matter whether they accepted or not, they had to fight them. If they accepted, they could make preparations and defences. As such, it was the smarter choice.
In 262 B.C. General Lianpo from the Zhao accepted Shangdou and set up defences at Changping to stop the Qin army. The reason he chose Changping was because of the environment’s conditions.
Firstly, Changping had the best geological and strategic places in all of Shangdou. The region was mainly hills. It had many mountains but also many plains. The main river was the Dan River, and there were 5 smaller rivers, the Dongcang River, Xiaodong River, Dongda River, Liuxu River, and Yonglu River, which covered the whole area.
This kind of geography was good for battle. Mountainous ground made attacking risky. Especially from the west and north where there were the Gaoyu Pass, Changping Pass, Gu Pass, etc. where they could fortify and defend; the hills could allow troops to move secretly without much difficulty. The river and the plains aided the transportation of resources and troops, also solving the problem of food. Everything adding together was beneficial to the defenders and not the attackers.
Secondly, no matter if the Qin attacked Shangdou or Handan, they only had two mountain routes they could take. They could take the Wu Ridge and Laoma Ridge to the west or the Yangchang Hill, Tianjin Pass to the south. Either route they chose had to go past Changping. This meant that as long as Lianpo had a strong army to defend Changping, the Qin army not only couldn't take over Shangdou, but couldn't get close to Handan.
The Zhao army went west of Handan City, crossing the 4th Pass of the "8 passes of Taixing", going further west through the Hukou Pass and into Shangdou. They then went in the southwest direction, going past Bayi Village, past the Changping War Zone, going around the Xiaodong river and past Jingmen Town and Xuanshi before splitting up and setting up their defences.
Xuanshi was around the middle of the Dan River, where both the Dan River and the Xiaodong River flowed. Hence, this place was relatively damp, but it was open and spacious. Between the two rivers, there was 10 thousand square meters of open land, with many hills which didn't impede movement. One could follow the Dan River towards the southeast or go against the tide towards the northwest, towards the villages there.
When Lianpo entered the Changping region, he set up 3 defensive lines.
The first was at Laoma Ridge. In the middle of the ridge was a large pass known as the Gaoping Pass. Left of the pass was a cliff wall, and on the right a steep stream. One could only go through the middle. The pass was 350 meters long from east to west and 1000 meters long from north to south. To the east and west of the pass were rivers that led down the mountain. West of it was Duanmin River which flowed towards the Yuxi River. Although there were mountains blocking east of the pass, to the north and south of the pass was the Dan River that flowed towards two rivers, the Macun River and the Yuancun River which flowed towards the east. This made a good passageway to travel through, and was a place the military needed to block up.
After Lianpo set up defences at Laoma Ridge, he built a city at the mouth of the Macun River and the Yuancun River. He thought that with the two rivers and the Laoma Ridge behind him, it would be a situation where it would be well protected. The Er'Zhang City had its back facing the mountain and was facing the river, being a place where troops could group up, and they could reinforce the soldiers at the pass at any time.
East of the Macun and the Yuancun rivers where both met was the Kangyin Village. South of it was the Xu River, and south of the river was the Beiling Mountain. West of the village was Horse Village, and west of where the two rivers met was called Langshan. This village was protected by mountains and rivers, forming a self enclosed environment. The 3 valleys were crooked with many turns, making it an easy to defend but hard to attack strategic point.
The village was originally the important reinforcement and provisions base for the Laoma Ridge; after it was conquered by the Qin, it became the eastern base of the Qin army.
The place where Ouyang Shuo was teleported to was exactly this place.
Leaving this for later, let's introduce the other two defensive lines that Lianpo set up.
Secondly, it was the defensive line at the Dan River. The river originated from Gaoping, flowing east and south. It flowed from the middle of Gaoping south to Pu City, and into the Yellow River. The valleys were deep with a strongly flowing rivers, the coasts were very wide and was good for troops to move.
Lianpo made use of this natural shield, building a 2nd line of defense at the eastern shoreline of the Dan River, which would act as the main defense. This defensive line stretched from Xuanshi southeast towards Zhao Zhuang, Daliang Mountain, and Gaoping. It also went northwest to Dianyi, Qijiayuan, Weicheng, Shimen, Jiantou, Sanjun, Hanwang Mountain, Yonglu, Changping, and the Jueshui and Danzhu Ridges.
Daliang Mountain was where Lianpo stored all his grain. Going northeast from here, there was Guanjia Ridge, Qifo Mountain, the 3 forming a mountainous body. This mountain was the highest amongst the central region mountains. Looking towards the northeast, one could see the Gu Pass. Towards the southwest one could see Laoma Ridge, together with the Hanwang Mountain 10 thousand odd meters away, they formed the two eyes of the Zhao army, letting them know about everything on the battlefield.
Such a situation was especially advantageous from a military standpoint, especially in the cold weapons era without communication methods. To the left of the mountain was the valley of Xiaodong River, and on the right was the valley of the Dongcang River which stretched towards the northeast, pointing towards Handan, maintaining close communication and also near provisions of supplies.
Lianpo's manor was set at Daliang Mountain.
The Hanwang Mountain was 7500 meters high, and was the ridge that split the Dan River, Xiaodong River and Yonglu River. It touched the clouds and had a clear view of the surroundings. Like how during the 3 year period when Daliang Mountain was the manor of Lianpo, Hanwang Mountain was where Zhao Kuo stayed at during the final stages of the battle. It and the Dan River were where the main battlefield was and where the Zhao army was trapped in.
Changping Pass was located at the northern border of Gaoping and Changzi. North of it was the source of the Zhuozhang River, south of it was the Dan River that flowed southeast. East and west of it were mountains. The western mountain reached the Danzhu Ridge which was the highest peak. The north side was flatter, and it was sloping down, so one had the high ground advantage against the enemy who was climbing the slope.
Changping Pass as the second line of defence prevented Qin troops from coming down from the east or coming up from the north.
Thirdly would be the 50 kilometer defensive stone wall. This defensive line went from the northwest all the way to the southeast, with the main priority at the northwest. It started at Changping Pass towards the mountain south of Dongjin to Yangtou Mountain. It continued towards Jinquan Mountain to the Maanhe, at the boundary of the Hu Pass. As the structure of the mountains and ridges had reached 50 kilometres, thus it was named Laoma Ridge.
If one said that the Laoma Ridge was the front of Zhao's defence, the Dan River would be the main base and the 50 kilometer stone wall would be their escape plan. This was the deepest point northeast to the Zhao forces, and would be Shangdou and Handan's last line of defense.
On 262 B.C. Lianpo was at Laoma Ridge as Wang He and his troops prepared to attack from the shore. The defenders from the Zhao had met the scouts from the Qin and couldn't hold, being forced back by the Qin army.
Wang He broke through the dangerous Laoma Ridge and its defences, taking over its supplies base, forming Guanglang City which was protected in all directions by mountains and rivers. He got rid of all the obstructions in the Dan River and rushed his troops to the western shore of the river, forming the situation where they were one river away from the Zhao troops.
Lianpo found that they couldn't fight head on with the Qin army, and wanted to maintain their strength for future battles, so he didn't try to organise a force to cross the river to fight them. He retreated to the eastern shore of the Dan River and relied on the river, strengthening the defensive line.
At this point, Lianpo was adamant in waiting for the Qin forces to attack. The Qin challenged and provoked them but they wouldn't send their troops. Just like that, he made use of the geological advantage to defend, causing the stronger Wang He who yearned for battle to be unwilling to cross the Dan River.
The battle remained in a stalemate where neither side was able to pull out ahead.
The Qin army came from far away, so it was difficult for them to get new supplies. They were also known as killers so no one in Shangdou wanted to help them. The Shangdou commoners supported the Zhao Army and worked together with them, as such they had a lot of resources. This decided that the Qin Army was better at a fast and decisive battle, but Zhao Army was better at a long, drawn out war.
The situation couldn't stay as such for long. It was either it went as Lianpo planned, for them to retaliate to destroy the Qin Army, or for Zhao court or Qin court to make a decision themselves.
The outcome was that Lianpo's strategy was deemed as being cowardly and being afraid to fight.
The Zhao King felt that it was so and let Zhao Kuo take over Lianpo to attack the Qin; at the same time, the Qin made Baiqi as the general and Wang He as the deputy. With that, the three year stalemate between them was finally broken and the battle seemed to favor the Qin.
Ouyang Shuo teleported into Guanglang City. What he didn't know was which stage Gaia had place them in, during the 3 year face off, or during the final stages of the war between Zhao Kuo and Baiqi.
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