Chapter 284: Extra 30,000 troops
After the storm, it took half a day for the sky to go back to normal. But by the afternoon, the sky was dark again and the burning sun was blocked by thunderous clouds. Although the sun was blocked, the air was incredibly still. The decreasing air pressure made it difficult for people to breathe.
The escaping elderly stood by the city gates, looking back on the city sighing, “There’s going to be another storm ah.” At the same moment, Ning Xiaoyao sat on the roof of the Supreme Splendor Hall and muttered, “The silence before the storm.”
Still hugging a bag of sugar beans, Ning Xiaoyao sat on the roof with Big Boss Black lying on his left and Little White Fatty crouching on his right. Oil Jar was on her shoulder. Just like that, Ning Xiaoyao remained on the rooftop for a day, two days, then three days. It wasn’t until the morning of the fourth day that she received news of Grand Preceptor Xie’s army reaching the city.
“There are close to 70,000 troops and horses,” reported Shadowrain. He had gone out of the city to seek information. Third Commander’s face was pale. Nearly 70,000 troops were on the way. This number far exceeded Lou Zigui’s predictions. It was also beyond the comfort zone of Shadowrain and the others.
Ning Xiaoyao shook her head.
“Supreme Commander didn’t say there would be so many troops ah!” Shadowrain complained.
Ning Xiaoyao looked at those standing before her. “I've said this before, Grand Preceptor Xie is Supreme Commander’s unlucky star. This is fate. With matters pertaining to Grand Preceptor Xie, Supreme Commander can’t win.”
“Then what did Supreme Commander say?” Shadowthunder urgently asked.
Shadowrain looked at Ning Xiaoyao and revealed, “Supreme Commander said with him around, there’s no need for His Majesty to worry.”
“There are almost 70,000 troops here and he’s telling His Majesty not to worry?!” Shadowbolt shouted. Deep down, he seriously wondered if Supreme Commander wanted to ruin His Majesty ah?!
“Calm down. Fourth Lightning, we have to calm down,” Ning Xiaoyao pushed him down to sit. “When it comes to war affairs, Supreme Commander is more knowledgeable than us”.
“Your Majesty!!!” The three commanders Shadowthunder, Shadowrain and Shadowbolt exclaimed at the same time.
“Actually, it doesn’t matter how many people they have. If I want to run, I still can,” she coaxed the three, “Don’t worry! We can’t panic before the battle. Come come, take deep breaths.”
The three commanders were in no mood for deep breathing exercises. They were almost worried to death!!
“Xie Wenyuan hasn’t left the city,” said Shadowrain, “Your Majesty, the old traitor is so certain you won’t kill him?”
“Well, I’m still here too.” Ning Xiaoyao sat down and popped a sugar bean in her mouth. “I can’t help but feel that Grand Preceptor Xie is up to no good.”
“He has rebelled ah!!” Shadowbolt shouted.
“Your Majesty, are you going to leave the capital to meet Supreme Commander?” asked Shadowrain, “This matter can’t simply be resolved with a simple ‘He’s here and all will work out’ right?”
Shadowbolt added, “Yeah! There are still so many people in the city that have no places to go. Once the battle starts, we can run, but what will happen to the common people?”
Shadowthunder and Shadowrain glared at Shadowbolt. It’s already difficult enough for us to escape in this situation and you still want His Majesty to save all the common people in the city?
Shadowbolt blinked quickly at his two brothers.
Shadowrain immediately realised that His Majesty did not care about other things and would only feel anxious when it concerned the common people. He then stopped Shadowthunder from saying anything.
As expected, Ning Xiaoyao couldn’t sit still and thought to herself, with so many enemies, I’ll be fine but what about the common people in the city?
“I’d better go look for Supreme Commander,” she stood up preparing to run off.
Shadowrain quickly blocked her path with his hand. “You’re just going like that? Elder Li and his men have closed all the doors in the palace ah!”
Ning Xiaoyao spun on her heels thinking, oh yeah! Elder Li and the rest also have yet to be sent out of the city.
“Should we tell Elder Li and his men the truth?” asked Shadowthunder.
Ning Xiaoyao sighed. If she could, she would already have. “I’m going to hide my face. I will discuss these matters with Supreme Commander. You all can wait for me in the palace.”
Then she turned and ran while Shadowrain and the others frowned unhappily. It wasn’t that they didn’t want to follow her, but with His Majesty’s speed, the wouldn’t be able to catch up even if they ran with their lives!
Ning Xiaoyao ran back to her new bedroom and took a veil to cover her face. But after looking out of the window, she thought, wouldn’t covering her face on a normal day bring about more attention?
After thinking carefully, she took out the flowery skirt and dressed as a lady with a veil. In this day and age, this is more acceptable ah.
Giving herself a ‘like’, Ning Xiaoyao changed into the dress.
In a military tent outside the South Wall, Lou Zigui finished his breakfast and placed down the empty bowl before speaking to the generals before him. “What is 30,000 extra men? The greater the number, the bigger mix of good and bad soldiers. Wouldn’t that make this battle much easier?”
The generals of the Black Frost Calvary were not worried about rushing into battle. “We are just worried after they have attacked our capital, our horses and men wouldn’t be able to enter the city,” Deng Rong said, “Supreme Commander, that extra thirty thousand troops will deter thirty thousand of our own troops ah!”
“That is why I have decided to station a troop in the city,” Lou Zigui replied.
The generals looked at each other thinking, did they still have anyone available to go in and out of the city freely?
“Xu Feiyu will arrive today.”
“He’s bringing the troops personally?”
“He still has the audacity to come?!” Deng Rong and Shen Mu replied simultaneously.
Lou Zigui looked at the two of them. “At this juncture, there are some matters that we should not mention anymore.”
“Let’s finish this battle first,” another general said.
“In Xu Feiyu’s message, he said he’s bringing all of the Zhou Family’s troops,” Lou Zigui said quietly.
“He’s not afraid of Xie Wenyuan knowing?” a general asked.
“Things have already reached this point, so what if Xie Wenyuan knows?” Lou Zigui pushed the empty bowl aside. “It’s not like we’ve never gone to war. Has gathering here caused all of you to panic?”
The generals would never admit that they were panicking. They’ve already fought many wars with the Northern Hu people.
“This is the land of the Emperor,” Deng Rong reminded Lou Zigui, “Not the lands outside Wushuang City ah.”
“War is war no matter where it’s fought, you guys...” Lou Zigui was cut off when he heard a very familiar voice outside the door shouting, “Supreme Commander?”
For a second, there was silence in the military tent. A few generals then shouted loudly, “Who?!”
They have heard the voice of the door guard and this voice did not belong to him!
“Enough, stop yelling,” Lou Zigui quickly walked out.
“Has Xue Feiyu arrived?” a general asked, stunned.
“Xue Feiyu’s voice sounds like that? You can’t tell if it’s a woman or a man?” Deng Rong was unconvinced.
“Based on Supreme Commander’s expression, it’s obviously not Xu Feiyu,” another general said, chasing after him.
The other generals agreed. Their Supreme Commander would never run to receive Xu Feiyu.
“You!” Lou Zigui walked out of the tent and was shocked when he saw Ning Xiaoyao in the flowery dress.
“Supreme Commander,” the door guard stammered, “She… she suddenly appeared. This inferior one didn’t have the time to announce.” He didn’t watch the tent properly. Would Supreme Commander punish him according to the military punishments ah?
Lou Zigui waved his hand to the guard and looked at Ning Xiaoyao. “Why did you come?”
She tugged on her collar. “I’ve come to find you for some matters ah. Ai, this hot weather is killing me!”
“You!” Lou Zigui could hear the generals rushing out from inside the tent. He looked at Ning Xiaoyao’s exposed collar showing her slim neck and clavicle. Lou Zigui immediately took off his outer robe and wrapped her up.
“I’m warm…” Ning Xiaoyao wanted to shout.
“Stop yelling,” Lou Zigui covered her mouth with his hand.
All the generals who exited the tent were stunned. Their Supreme Commander was actually hugging a lady! And his outer robe was actually on this lady! Not only that, his hand was covering her mouth! Did their Supreme Commander finally find a girl while they weren’t paying attention?
“All of you, leave to do your own thing,” Lou Zigui ordered while pulling Ning Xiaoyao back towards the tent.
“Supreme Commander,” Deng Rong stood in front of him and stared at Ning Xiaoyao saying, “Who is this lady ah?”
Ning Xiaoyao wasn’t afraid of being seen by Deng Rong and the rest. After all, this wasn’t her first time wearing a dress. But Lou Zigui did not let go of her mouth. Since he wouldn’t allow her to speak, she could only play dead.
Lou Zigui frowned and icily glared at the curious men before him.
Deng Rong and the others retreated. Lou Zigui was displaying his icy face. This meant that Supreme Commander was giving them a warning. It’s best not to provoke him, or who knows what he would do to you.
After the generals left, Lou Zigui glanced at the door guard and soldiers.
The soldiers lowered their heads and wished that they could bury themselves underground. Supreme Commander was actually not fierce and quite polite to them. However, for reasons unknown to them, they were very afraid of him.
The soldiers have privately discussed this amongst themselves and concluded that Supreme Commander Lou probably killed too many people. In addition, he was also the star of misfortune. Hence, his killing intent was too strong. (Author: Hey! Don’t be like that ah!)
Lou Zigui pulled Ning Xiaoyao into the tent. She looked at all the empty porridge bowls. “You’ve eaten la.”
“There’s still one mantou, do you want it?” Lou Zigui pointed to the plate.
Ning Xiaoyao gulped down her saliva. “No, I'm not going to eat. Supreme Commander you’re about to fight a war, you eat it.”
Lou Zigui smiled, pulling Ning Xiaoyao to sit. “What brings you here?”
Taking off the outer robe, she replied, “There are 70,000 of Grand Preceptor’s troops on their way here. I’ve come to ask about it.”
Lou Zigui reached out and buttoned up Ning Xiaoyao’s collar. He murmured, “Since you’re already here, just stay outside the capital then.”
“We’re talking about the 70,000 troops,” Ning Xiaoyao said seriously.
“Fine, almost 70,000. Supreme Commander, can we really win this war?”
“Xie Wenyuan is only a scholar,” Lou Zigui took the mantou from the plate and placed it in Ning Xiaoyao’s hands. He lightly explained, “There are only less than 30,000 elite soldiers. With nearly 70,000 horses and men, I only need to ambush one of his battalions and his army would be defeated.”
“Really???” Ning Xiaoyao was shocked.
“In a battlefield, the biggest concern is to have deserters,” Lou Zigui said while pouring her a cup of water, “That is because deserters will cause chaos within the army. This time, Xie Wenyuan’s soldiers are invading the city. They are rebelling. The soldiers would definitely feel uneasy to begin with. If a military ambush occurs, his troops would be finished.”
Ning Xiaoyao thought Supreme Commander Lou’s words made sense.
“War is not only about competing in numbers,” Lou Zigui smiled briefly.
Ning Xiaoyao bit into the mantou, This isn’t as good as the one made by Chef Huang. Deep down, she still felt uneasy. For some reason, she felt like something bad was about to happen.
“Xiaoyao,” Lou Zigui walked over.
“I’m going back, your beauty trap is useless against me,” Ning Xiaoyao pushed the beautiful face that was in front of her. Ning Xiaoyao was suddenly feeling very restless. It looks like I’ll have to make a trip to the Grand Preceptor’s estate to investigate my enemy’s plans.Previous Chapter Next Chapter