Ravaging Times

chapter 317

{Baima}
(or “Boma” if you prefer, since that’s wikipedia’s spelling for that particular battle)

{near flag reads: Yuan, distant flag reads: Wen}

[?]: How is it?

[?]: The enemy has dispatched a second battalion southward. More men this time!

chapter 317 The Savages of Hebei
(or “caveman”? “yetti”? “Neanderthal”? the implication is that of an uncivilized human)

[?]: The Yuan army has entered the city; Liu Yan pulled out!

[?]: Advisor, Liu Yan’s retreat will mean an even tougher time for the neighboring cities…

{Cao Cao‘s military advisor, Xun You}
[Xun You]: This army is different from Yan Liang‘s. They proceed slowly and orderly.
(“…not in a hurry at all…”)

[XY]: Amazing. He has seen through the reality of our military force.

[XY]: Generals,

[XY]: they’ve already broke through many camps at our front line. It’s futile to keep fighting.

[XY]: Abandon the city immediately. Relocate all residents westward.

In the summer of year 200, the second wave of Yuan Shao’s main forces advanced southward. Cao Cao ordered the relocation of residents in and around the Baima region; they were to move along the Yellow River and migrate westward.

{north of Baima}
(or “Boma” if you prefer)

[?]: The third team has arrived!
{right flag reads: Yuan, left flag reads: Wen}
[?]: The sixth team has arrived!

[?]: Everyone move into the city. Choose whichever house for your team to rest in.

[?]: Move!
(“go”)

[?]: Sir! Liu Bei has been captured!

[?]: Liu Bei, what is the meaning of this?

[?]: Our Lord graciously took you in, but you’d collude with Cao Cao in secret?

[?]: You caused the violent death of our General-in-Chief Yan Liang and shattered the army morale, you…
(“…the army collapse…”)

[?]: Not so, Secretariat.

{Yuan Shao’s General-In-Chief, Wen Chou}
[Wen Chou]: It’s clear as day that Imperial Uncle is devoted to Han.

Wen Chou…

[WC]: If he was colluding with the Cao army, he’d be in the capital by now instead of waiting to be captured.

[WC]: Imperial Uncle, we savages of Hebei tend to be rough.

[WC]: But your capture was only meant to prevent you from being harmed by Cao Cao.
(how do I shorten this without losing something?)

[WC]: Please forgive us if we had caused you distress.

[WC]: I can finally relax now that you have returned, Imperial Uncle.
(“…put down the great boulder on my heart…”)

[WC]: The battlefields are too dangerous, so we must escort you back to Ye for your safety.
(“…city of Ye…”)

[WC]: Tell our Lord to keep Imperial Uncle “safe”.
(“…protect…”)
[?]: Yessir.

[WC]: Pardon me.

[Liu Bei]: I deeply appreciate your impartial judgment.
(the first part of the phrase is akin to “turning over every rock”)

[?]: Sir! Baima’s forces have retreated. We’ll have all the cities there before noon.
[?]: The commanders want to move their troops into the cities for shelter.
(“…to avoid wind and rain”)

[WC]: If our troops try to hold those positions we’ll be divided just like the enemy wanted, and that must be avoided.
(reworded)

[WC]: My order to the troops is to rest but not settle.
(“…don’t be reluctant to leave those cities”)
[?]: Yessir.

[LB]: The wise once said, so-called foolhardy men are just a front…

[LB]: The savages of Hebei… should, in reality, be avoided in warfare.

[WC]: That’s flattering, Imperial Uncle. In reality I obtained this rank through connections.

[WC]: But people who understand how that works…
(“…the reason within…”)

[WC]: can be found among your followers too, right?
(“…next to you…”)

[WC]: A close proximity facilitates mutual influence.
(what the heck is this? I’m not sure why WC wants to debase himself by implying they’re all “bad apples”)

The wise can tell how things end before they even begin?
(“the wise can spy what has yet to put out sprouts“)
The fools are still in the dark when it is all said and done?
(“the stupid are blind even to things already done“)

Things get done in the “dark”!
(not sure; does he want to emphasize their ignorance, or is this a wordplay on “in secrecy” or “being Machiavellian”?)

[LB]: You guys…

{Liu Bei’s Attendant Clerk, Jian Yong}
[Jian Yong]: We were caught just like you, my Lord.
{Mi Zhu}

[LB]: Wasn’t there an arrangement with Liu Biao?

[Mi Zhu]: We were cut off by a Yuan army during our trip westward.

[?]: It didn’t take long for all of Liu Biao’s men to be beaten back.
[?]: It turns out that Wen Chou outmaneuvered us by laying multiple ambushes around the Yan Ford area.

[LB]: If I hadn’t been around Yi De for so long, I probably wouldn’t be able to figure this guy out either.
(“…see through this type person’s thoughts”)

[LB]: You know, how can a foolhardy man manage an army methodically

[LB]: and even be a constant headache to Cao Cao’s so-called renowned generals?

[JY]: What about the headache caused by Guo Jia, my Lord?
(“Guo Jia made us miserable, is your head not hurting?”)

[LB]: They won’t make things too difficult because my reputation will protect me.

[LB]: There are too many royal family members in the world, and now that they follow my leadership, it will only hurt the side that causes me harm.
(simplified)

[LB]: Although the alienation tactic does make Yuan Shao wary, hindering our future movements…
(“…in the future each inch of a step will be difficult”)

[LB]: We cannot be trapped in Ye.
(“city of Ye”)

[LB]: First a blow from Guo Jia, now a threat from the Savage of Hebei…
(“first suffer Guo Jia’s harm, then comes Hebei savage man’s threatening”)

[LB]: We’re stuck in between like pawns on a game board – without control.
(“one front one back…”)

[LB]: Send someone to the Cao camp to tell him of our capture…

[LB]: Wen Chou implied that we’ll be freed if he comes over to this side.
(“…we will have absolute freedom”)

[LB]: However, this move is risky and involves obstacles.
(“…and many people cause obstacles”)

[LB]: My family will have to be sacrificed if it comes to that!

[LB]: Go, bring Guan Yu over here!

That is why after killing Yan Liang,

Guan Yu has never again fought for the Cao army.

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