Ravaging Times

chapter 454

{city of Guiyang}
[?]: We haven’t dared to step out of line these past years since Cao Cao’s rise to power.

[?]: Our goal was to save the country, but we were helpless to do anything about it with our limited resources…
[?]: Justice at last when you whipped that traitor at Red Cliff.

[?]: You’ve also shown us all that not even Cao Cao is invincible.

[?]: That’s why we feel reinvigorated to fight for Imperial Han.

chapter 454 On Brotherly Terms
(“fan older-brother yun younger-brother”)

[Zhao Fan]: Hence the excitement here in Guiyang when you arrived, General Zhao.

[Zhao Yun]: Sir Zhao’s clear sense of principles is a blessing to the Imperial Uncle.
(“…like gaining a tiger-like general”)

[ZY]: As you know, Lingling and Changsha in the south are causing trouble for him…
[ZY]: We should raise an army to assist him so that we may eliminate the rebels and expand territory.

[ZF]: That makes sense, General Zhao. I had the same thought.

[ZY]: I stand alone,

[ZY]: so I hope that with your support we could stage a two-front assault to help the Imperial Uncle.

[ZY]: You in command, and I as support. What do you think?

[ZF]: Yes, I’ll prep the troops and set out with you immediately, brother Zhao.

[ZF]: Great minds think alike. A toast to you.

[ZY]: No, brother Zhao, your generosity puts me to shame.

[ZY]: This toast should be to you.

[ZY]: Blessed is me to have a confidant in this fight for our country.

[ZY]: Here, let’s down it together!

[ZY]: Let’s!

[ZF]: You’re right, but…

[ZF]: Old Peng, this wine is too cheap for a drink between brothers.
[Peng]: Oh, my apologies.

[ZF]: Don’t we have several jars of the best? Bring them out, quickly.
(“…excellent wine…”)

[P]: Yes yes yes, right away.
(“…I immediately switch them here”)

[ZF]: Preparations will take time. Let’s drink to our heart’s content before the battle.
[ZY]: Your wish is my command.

[?]: Here! Down it!
[?]: Haha, you sure can hold your liquor!

[?]: What’s the matter? Why’re we still waiting to take him down?

[P]: That guy sat next to our Lord on purpose. He might’ve caught on.
[P]: So I had to switch out the poisoned drink with regular ones.

[?]: We already know his hand of cards. So what’re we afraid of?

[?]: Don’t be rash!

[?]: This guy made a grand show at the Changban Slope. If we poison him, our Lord might die with him.

[?]: The better option is to take him down when they’re out cold.

[?]: Just a little longer. Wait for my command.

[?]: More reason not to dally if he’s already seen through it.

[?]: This guy is an assassin. He came with a plan.

[?]: He’s a skilled fighter too. I fear that none of you are his match.

[?]: As always, let me go in first, and you watch for an opening.

[?]: You sure?
(“you have grasp/confidence”)

[ZF]: Zhending county of Changshan? Then we really do share a hometown.
(同乡 feels quite broad to me, so not necessarily from the same village/city/town/province, depends on context; for example, I think Chinese expat abroad can say the same about each other, regardless of which province they were from, although maybe limit it to either both northern or both southern regions; but YMMV)

[ZF]: Unfortunately this first meeting came too late. Had we known each other earlier,
[ZF]: the three of us would’ve already made it in this world.

[ZY]: Three of us? What do you mean, brother Zhao?

[ZF]: Haha, I forgot, I forgot…

[ZF]: I keep mentioning him.

[ZF]: My oath brother, Zhao Ling, he was as outstanding as you.

[ZF]: Talking about world’s affairs with him always filled us with righteous indignation.
[ZY]: Haha, good men.

[ZF]: Pity he didn’t watch the tide carefully enough. A single misstep cost him his young life.
(“…unable to observe/figure-out world’s situation, one time not careful, prime year early death”)

[ZF]: That’s why I’ve always been cautious about making big decisions.

[ZF]: Even if I support the Imperial Uncle, I must do so secretly for fear of making a mistake.

[ZF]: Apologies… The drinks brought back memories of my late brother- got me rambling again.

[ZY]: Everybody dies. But friends make life worth living.

[ZF]: Yes. I just hope I can take care of his family…

[ZF]: Sadly despite my determination to go into battle,

[ZF]: I still have attachments.

[ZF]: Zhao Ling’s widow, Miss Fan, is still in her prime.

[ZF]: At his deathbed, he asked me to take care of her.

[ZF]: I should be at the forefront as the commander, but I’m afraid…

[ZY]: Don’t worry. The sister-in-law of my oath brother is like my sister-in-law. I will do my utmost to protect her.

[ZY]: However, I have a request as well.

[ZY]: Save your honey trap. Come with me to see the Imperial Uncle, or…

[ZY]: I’ll end your miserable life.
(“immediately take your dog life”)

[ZY]: The ambush here is pittance compared to what I faced at Changban.
(“…chang ban slope’s skin and fur…”)

[ZF]: Hahaha… playing the charade sure can be exhausting.

[ZF]: Zhao Ling was made up, like Zhao Yun of Changshan, right?

[ZY]: No, I used to be a Zhao.

[?]: Yes, he is a Zhao.

[Fan]: Back then he was Zhao Huo.

[F]: He was the foster son of Dong Zhuo’s subordinate Zhao Xian.

[F]: Eighteen years ago, Zhao Xian failed to protect Xu Lin and died.
(“190…”; thanks to karthikkunchu for catching my translation error)

{sfx: ka}

[F]: His foster son Zhao Huo went missing.

[F]: Zhao Xian’s entire family was executed for Xu Lin’s death.
(plothole? Zhao Huo was still in the Dong Zhuo army for a while)

[F]: Only one person escaped the punishment.

{sfx: pong~}

[?]: Go!

{sfx: ping~}

[ZY]: Xiao…
(diminutive prefix as an affectionate reference to someone, like the “xiao” in “xiao meng”)

[ZY]: Fan…

[?]: Sit down, all of you!
[?]: Drop your weapons and surrender!

[?]: You hear me?

{sfx: zing}

{sfx: ka}

[F]: Don’t worry, sir Zhao. It’s just assassin’s reflex.

{sfx: pong~}

[ZF]: Sometimes the truth is scarier than fiction.
(“…boasting too much, truth instead makes one’s hair stand on end”)

[ZF]: Who… is he really?

[F]: The man who made me a widow…

They saw that Lady Fan’s hands were trembling-

unlike her usual self.

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