Ravaging Times

chapter 135

(I need to read this over, no time right now)

The chaos within an empire,
is it the fault of a terrible ruler?
Or because the corrupt officials had more power?

Those who wage war in the name of the empire, are they loyal?
Or had something else in mind?

The path of Loyalists, is it a straight one?
Or is it crooked?

In 190 AD…

Dong Zhuo set Luoyang on fire, and moved the capital to Changan.

chapter 135 The Suffering of a Loyalist

Of all the warlords who were fighting Dong Zhuo, only one shed tears.

{“the General who Destroys Insurgents”, Sun Jian}
/* http://members.shaw.ca/jiuwan2/Ranks.htm */

[Zhu Zhi]: My Lord, the blaze is too powerful. There’s no way to put it out.
{Sun Jian’s subordinate Zhu Zhi}
{Cheng Pu}
{Han Dang}

[Sun Jian]: The empire is in an even greater crisis than this fire, and to save it we need determination.

[SJ]: The loss of a ruling spirit leads to the ruin of an empire; rebuilding the empire rests on the will of its people.

[SJ]: Everyone!

LET’S PUT OUT THE FIRE!

{fire sfx: xiong~}
PUT IT OUT!

My Lord…

[soldiers]: My Lord! I’ll help you!
[soldiers]: Let’s all go!

[ZZ]: Cheng Pu, my regimen will head for the river; you go help that “fool”.
[Cheng Pu]: Yeah, if he thinks he can put out that fire with just a piece of cloth…

In the end, Sun Jian’s army spent three days and three nights,

but Luoyang’s fire was finally extinguished.

[CP]: My Lord, Shuzi and the guys are ok.
/*
Shu-zi is an affectionate way of calling Sun Shu; used within a family;
in some way it may be similar to adding “Xiao” prefix to a lastname,
or like the English -ie suffix, “Jess” to “Jessie”, etc.
*/

[SJ]: What about the Alliance Leader (Yuan Shao)?

[CP]: Don’t worry, lord Yuan Shao has been rescued.
[CP]: My Lord, you don’t want to go see Shuzi?

[SJ]: The empire is more important; I’m only concerned about the Alliance Leader’s safety, other things…

[scout]: My Lord, lord Yuan Shu orders you to go after Dong Zhuo’s army in Changan. He’ll take care of this place.

[CP]: How can we go without rations?

[SJ]: The Alliance Leader’s clan is always for the empire. I guess they just don’t have enough. We’ll have to make it on our own!

[SJ]: Lord Yuan Shu’s officer?

[soldier]: Yessir, he seems to have died from the fire.
[SJ]: Strange. Why were they here?

[SJ]: The Alliance Leader didn’t come through this path, right?
[ZZ]: This man is wearing the Imperial Guard uniform. Perhaps he snuck in ahead of time.

[Han Dang]: My Lord, this one is still alive.

[SJ]: What?

[?]: Quite a few of these guys!
[?]: Wait, he wants to say something.

[spy]: Is… is it my Lord? I… failed the mission…

[HD]: Don’t worry, your Lord has left safely…

[spy]: At south gate…

[SJ]: That’s here.

[spy]: In official Zhen’s well…
/* not sure about first part */
[spy]: I won’t… be able to…

[spy]: watch my Lord… become the emperor…

[HD]: Don’t die! What do you mean?

Become the emperor?

That day, near the well…

they went dumbfounded for two hours.

For half a day, even.

[?]: We were heading straight for Luoyang, a sure win, but the Yuan clan refused to send us rations…
[?]: As a result, the Yuan clan arrived first.
[?]: We put out the fire, but the eager one to get in …was still the Yuan clan.

[soldier]: So then… the Yuan clan came not only for the hostages, but also the Imperial Seal?
[ZZ]: We thought the Yuan clan was loyal to Han, who knew they were just a bunch of hundry dogs.

[CP]: So, what to do with this Imperial Seal?

[soldier x]: If the Yuan clan has ulterior motives, I say we give it to Cao Cao, who I think is a man of integrity.
[soldier y]: No, I heard that he just lost his entire army. I doubt he has the means to protect this Imperial Seal.

[ZZ]: Young Emperor is now in the hands of Dong Zhuo, far away in Changan, we don’t know…
/* “life death not determined…” */
[ZZ]: I say… Youzhou’s governor Liu Yu is a talent from the Imperial clan, why not…

[SJ]: He’s but a puppet of the Yuan clan; giving him the Imperial Seal is the same as handing it to the ambitious.

[HD]: My Lord, seeing the lords of the Alliance enjoying themselves everyday, I don’t think any of them can be trusted with the Seal.

[SJ]: So then, no one can hold on to it?

[CP]: My Lord, we can’t give the Seal to a corrupt official; but giving it to a Loyalist will bring them great harm. We’re really in a bind.

[CP]: What you said were all empty talk, my Lord.

[CP]: Your “intention” is well-known!

[SJ]: You all… are not afraid of the repercussion?

[soldiers]: My Lord, if we do we won’t be part of the Sun clan!
[soldiers]: Right, and what’s to fear when you are a descendent of Sunzi?

[SJ]: You know that hiding the Imperial Seal is a monstrous crime!

[CP]: Disregarding one’s reputation for the good of the empire; who is more righteous than my Lord?
[CP]: It is a great honor for us to serve under such a Loyalist!

[CP]: The path of Loyalists… is it straight? Or crooked?
[CP]: No one will know the suffering of a dutiful Loyalist.

For the good of the empire, Sun Jian made a decision that day.

Though he couldn’t have predicted that the secret was leaked.

Afterwards, the Guandong Alliance lost the campaign against Dong Zhuo, and the lords retreated one by one,
then they started to point their fingers at Sun Jian’s crime.

Because of the Sun clan’s influence in the Eastern region, plus Sun Jian’s powerful battle skills, the lords didn’t dare an assault.

While Sun Jian’s denial, regarding hiding the Imperial Seal, made him many enemies.

But Sun Jian kept fighting in the hope of restoring Imperial Han.

He obeys the Yuan clan’s every command, as long as it’s not about the Seal.

In 192 AD, Yuan Shu ordered Sun Jian to campaign against Jingzhou’s Liu Biao.

Sun Jian fought with Liu Biao’s subordinate Huang Zu, and he was always triumphant.
He defeated Huang Zu twice, besieging Xiangyang, and forcing Huang Zu to escape into Mount Xian…
{note: Xiangyang, the location of Jingzhou’s government office}

In the end, Sun Jian smiled at Mount Xian.

But it was filled with bitterness.
Bitter, because he sees the end of Imperial Han.

That day,
the last Loyalist of the Han dynasty, at the age of only thirty-seven, was killed in an ambush.

Loyalists live only to have their names in the Historical Record; is that the Will of Heaven?

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