Chapter 467- Sacrificing the Knight to Protect the King
The entire harbor was a total mess.
Wang Feng led the Divine Martial Guards. They stepped onto the wooden boards the placed Flying Cloud placed down and disembarked first.
Jiaozhou Harbor was similar to Beihai Harbor in that both the military and commoners used it. The Jade Buddha County Navy Unit still had two hundred more soldiers guarding the camp.
Only a bunch of fishers remained.
Ouyang Shuo had instructed his troops to not act as mindless killing machines. Unless they really had no choice, they would not massacre defenseless people.
Hence, the moment the Divine Martial Guards disembarked, they charged straight for the navy camp.
Navy soldiers still had combat strength on land. The two squadrons on this trip all disembarked, apart from a portion left behind in the harbor.
If not, solely relying on the Divine Martial Guards, they would not be able to take down Jade Buddha County.
When the two sides fought the naval battle, the troops in the units had already gathered up. Facing the fierce enemy troops, the major wanted to retreat into the city, but he did not dare to do so.
Escaping from battle was a death crime.
Of course, even if they stayed, only slaughter awaited them. In front of the Divine Martial Guards, they were defenseless. After clearing out the soldiers at the harbor, the entire squadron could finally disembark.
The two navy squadrons, apart from those guarding the harbor, could gather into eighteen thousand men to fight on the land.
In addition to the Divine Martial Guards, the had over twenty thousand soldiers. After a short rest, they charged straight for Jade Buddha County.
The current Jade Buddha County was in a state of high alert, the city gates tightly shut. The city protection forces were waiting in formation on the city walls. If they were purely a navy squadron, they really could not do anything to the county, unless they had cannons.
Shanhai City had made preparations for this battle for a long time, so how could they lack arrangements? The enemy waited, only to see arrow towers and scaling ladders taken down from the ships and assembled together.
The hundred odd movable arrow turrets were the key to this battle.
Apart from the sword-shield soldiers, they navy forces were mainly archers.
Thanks to the help of the movable arrow turrets, they suppressed the firepower of the defending troops. The Divine Martial Guards acted as the front unit, using the scaling ladders to climb up the city wall in less than an hour.
Of the Jade Buddha County city protection division, Hefu had taken away five thousand of the elites, so only around eight thousand men remained. Facing a sieging force of around twenty thousand, they should not feel so pressured.
Unfortunately, the opponent that they faced were the Divine Martial Guards, who had taken down the Jiangdong Warriors. Each and every one of them could take on ten alone.
This bunch of warriors trained in hell. The moment they rushed up, the outcome was already predictable.
At 11 AM, the Divine Martial Guards had completely occupied the city wall.
They had broken the defences of Jade Buddha County.
After taking down the county, Zhao Kuo followed Ouyang Shuo’s instructions and did not destroy the stone steele. Instead, he arranged for five hundred Divine Martial Guards to defend the teleportation formation.
In the surroundings, two thousand archers waited.
If Hefu dared to teleport back to try and help, before he even walked out of the formation, arrows would rain on his troops.
Apart from that, Zhao Kuo also arranged for ten thousand soldiers to control the Jade Buddha County city gates, arrow towers, treasury, granary, and other important areas.
The entire county had now fallen under their control.
Meanwhile, one thousand Divine Martial Guards led the remaining soldiers out of the city to destroy the subsidiary territories of Jade Buddha County; they swept the entire territory.
When Jade Buddha County was attacked, Hefu who was thousands of miles away had already received the notification.
At that moment, his face turned ashen white.
His first reaction was to lead his troops back to help out.
He was about to look for Di Qing, but he stopped prior to walking out of the room.
He could not go.
The moment he went back, the entire alliance army would fall apart.
The worst part was that Yun An County was just a territory that Shanhai City had occupied before. As such, the place did not have a teleportation formation. He needed to travel back to return through teleportation.
This was where Baiqi’s genius showed.
When the alliance army came down south, Baiqi had started to consolidate their defenses. He had given up territories they had taken over, making the main camp as the core area to defend.
With that, Baiqi created a situation where the enemy could not directly teleport their troops without alerting the Shanhai City Army. If they teleported reinforcements to the back, the Military Intelligence Division would definitely find out.
Now, the question that remained was whether the alliance army had the courage to cut off all means of retreat and charge ahead.
When Hefu summoned Di Qing, the latter felt a little confused.
After the probing attack in the morning, Di Qing had basically confirmed that the enemy main base, Cangcheng County, was the weakest point.
Baiqi had truly played it well.
Unfortunately Di Qing did not fall for it. The prestige of the Asura did not deter or scare him.
Di Qing was already planning to adjust the forces and focus their attack on Cangcheng County. The moment it fell, the enemy would face imminent defeat.
He was highly confident about this battle.
As a result of his careful nature, he would not give the enemy any way back into this.
The moment he discerned the enemy's weakness, he would go all in and destroy them before they could react.
Even the Asura, without soldiers under his control, was like a lion without claws.
The chance to defeat Baiqi on the battlefield caused waves to break out in Di Qing's calm heart.
At this very moment, his Lord had suddenly summoned him.
In his heart, a bad feeling arose. He obtained the commanding rights because of his Lord. Logically, in the current morning, his Lord would not interfere in military matters.
Unless... unless an unthinkable situation had occurred.
Di Qing's premonition came through. When he heard the news that Jade Buddha County had fallen, his mouth widened. His expression was exactly the same as Hefu’s.
"What a genius!"
In his heart, he was not arrogant any longer.
Jade Buddha County was thousands of miles away from Shanhai City. Even by ship, they would need over ten days to cover such a distance. This meant that even before the war started, Shanhai City had planned to attack Jade Buddha County.
In terms of strategic planning, the alliance army had lost.
"What are the Lord's intentions?"
Di Qing looked at Hefu; doubts and questions filled his mind. With his experience, he knew that sending reinforcements would not do anything. Instead, they would just fall into the enemy’s trap.
Jade Buddha County was attacked, but there was no notification of enemy occupation, why?
There were two possibilities.
Firstly, the enemy had failed to take down the county, so it remained under their control.
Secondly, the county had already fallen, but the enemy had not landed the final blow.
Without even thinking, Di Qing dismissed the first option. The generals of Shanhai City were not fools. Since they had planned this out so long ago, how could they fail to bring enough troops?
If they were not confident, why would they even act?
Hence, Di Qing was sure that Jade Buddha County had fallen. If they teleported back now, what awaited them were not their commoners but an arrow rain.
Even so, Di Qing did not dare to directly try and persuade his Lord to give up such an idea. He knew incredibly clearly what a territory meant to a Lord.
In Hefu's heart, he was struggling. He called Di Qing over to ask him to come up with a plan. Hearing Di Qing's question, Hefu sighed. It seems like he was the one who had to make the decision.
"If we don't return, do you have confidence in taking down the Shanhai City Army?"
Hefu looked up at Di Qing solemnly.
When Di Qing heard this question, he felt shocked. He knew that the Lord was giving up his own base and putting it all on this battle.
Weighing everything, Di Qing said carefully, “With the current soldier strength and my deductions of the battlefield, defeating them should not pose a problem. But crushing them or annihilating them is impossible."
Di Qing's reply was full of substance; he did not dare exaggerate anything.
Any false information could adversely affect Hefu’s judgement.
When Hefu heard these words, he had a complicated expression. As expected, Di Qing had not disappointed him. In just two days after he took control, he had found a way to victory.
However, just defeating them was not enough.
Hefu would only give up Jade Buddha County if he could rise up again in Zhaoqing Prefecture. In such a scenario, using Jade Buddha County to exchange for the South of Zhaoqing was worth it.
To be able to gain a footing, he had to decimate and crush the Shanhai City Army. He had to make it so that they could not send another force in a short amount of time.
Only then could he have the time to form up his army and build up his defenses to fight against Shanhai City. Even taking back Jade Buddha County was a possibility.
After hearing the plans of his Lord, Di Qing was speechless.
Ambition filled his words, and he wanted to try and rise up from the ashes.
Now, the key laid within Di Qing’s hands.
After a long silence, and only after he considered all elements, Di Qing spoke once more, "Lord, give me another fifty thousand troops, and I will crush them. I can even chase them out of Zhaoqing Prefecture."
Hefu smacked the desk and stood up, "The problem with the number of soldiers, I'll settle it. Matters of the battlefield, I'll hand it to you. I hope that you can do as you say and not disappoint me."
"I'm willing to set a military order. If we don't win, I'll give you my head!"
Di Qing was also exceedingly serious, so he bet his own life on this battle.
Hefu shook his head, "I don't want your head. I want victory, do you understand?" The current Hefu was like a gambling addict, gambling his last chance at survival away.
Di Qing nodded.
"Go!" Hefu waved his hand in an exhausted manner, his voice hoarse, “At the day after at the latest, fifty thousand troops will rush here!"
Di Qing bowed when he heard these words. Then, he left.
After sending Di Qing away, Hefu walked out of his room. He needed to gather the members of South Alliance to hold an emergency meeting. Moreover, he needed to find a suitable reason to convince them to send more reinforcements.
He knew how difficult this would be.
Sending three thousand troops already approached their limit.
Now, to send another thousand, that was basically cutting at their flesh.
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