Portal:Investiture of the Gods/Chapter 56

Investiture of the Gods
The Conflict for the sake of Reputation
Xu Zhonglin or Lu Xixing

This chapter is titled "The Conflict for the sake of Reputation". As San Yisheng had approached the Shang camp, he was refused any potential entrance, for Deng Jiugong personally stated that he was not in any position to meet the former, out of fear that any furthered amount of demoralization would come about his soldiers. With San Yisheng's consistent protests, and Tai Luan's suggestion to allow the Supreme Minister entrance for the sake of furthered observation, the two individuals met each other shortly, where they exchanged traditional bows of greeting as respective enemies. As San Yisheng began to elaborate the issue concerning Earth Traveler Sun's supposedly destined marriage to the former's daughter as an unavoidable matter, he asked for Jiugong's descision on the matter. Deng Jiugong, who knew that Earth Traveler Sun must have spout such words in order to ensure his own potential safety, retorted his intentions to never allow any individual the hand of his precious daughter, and that the rebel commander is simply spouting nonsense for the sake of reconciliation. Vaguely recalling his original statement to Sun that involved giving him Chanyu if the Western Foothills were conquered, San Yisheng received such words, and told the commander that such a statement could easily be proven as the resolving figure of Sun's determination, and if it were to be retracted as a mere child's game, Jiugong may lose an extent of reputation amongst the populace and will naturally lose faith amongst the greater whole of Shang. Taking these words into consideration, General Tai Luan secretly wispered a plan into the commander's ear, who in turn lightened with delight, and declared to San Yisheng that he shall do as the latter advises, but is in need of carefully discussing such information to Chanyu before forming any final decision. As San Yisheng was clearly glad to hear such words, he returned to Phoenix City to report the Shang commander's declaration immediately following. Meanwhile, Tai Luan elaborated his plan in great length, suggesting that a capable individual should first tell the prime minister that Chanyu has consented, but, in fear that such words are only involving some form of trap that will end to her detriment, she is in need of seeing Jiang Ziya in order for the information to be confirmed, and without any additional risk adding upon her part. In doing so, a great feast would be prepared for the rebel commander, but, at a time of advantage, men should be ordered to seize the former at a set signal. Consenting to such a plan has being of great risk to his reputation, but an opportunity to act in the greater good, Deng Jiugong ordered Tai Luan to appear before Phoenix City with such a message in hand. Allowing the individual presence within the city, he appeared before Prime Minister Jiang Ziya and began to elaborate his master's words, declaring that the day after tomorrow shall be chosen for the marriage, with the honor of the prime minister and San Yisheng to personally lead his son-in-law to the ceremonial region. Giving a reply of consention in return, Tai Luan returned to the side of his commander; Jiugong, knowing that such a resolution was the only true rational choice on the part of Ziya, had already made careful preparations in order to ensure that over three-hundred set warriors are placed in regions that would not only allow them secrecy from any potential enemy, but would additionally allow a quick strike when the signal for attack is called. As the second day had thus arrived in quick time, Jiang Ziya, who knew that the possibility for Jiugong to attempt deceitful measures was exceedingly likely, additionally placed his forces in set regions that would ensure his essential safety from the enemy. However, just to ensure that everything ends in his own victory with a personal taste of deceit, Jiang Ziya, still present within Phoenix City that morning, specifically told Earth Traveler Sun to enter the back camp and carry away Deng Chanyu at the first hearing of cannon roar. With the arrival of mid-afternoon, San Yisheng and Jiang Ziya appeared before the camp of Shang, to which they exchanged proper courtesies before taking their seats inside the camp gates.

As Jiang Ziya's generals brought forth many presents of celebration before Deng Jiugong and the soldiers present, Xin Jia of Zhou suddenly ignited the fuse of a large cannon hidden within a box, creating an earth shaking explosion and clouding the air with dirt. With the rebel commander's courtiers unleashing forth their hidden weapons while charging forth at Deng Jiugong, who was startled out of his very imagination, fled from the camp with Tai Luan, but became hemmed in by the forces of Zhou, which had surrounded the camp from strategic points while wiping out any opposition from outside. Managing to flee nontheless, Jiang Ziya's forces poured forthward, overpowering the great power of Shang with the element of surprise. With Deng Jiugong fleeing to the south amongst such great confusion, Chanyu and other such generals and soldiers went in pursuit of their commander; but Chanyu was unfortunately seized at a sudden moment by the Celestial Binding Rope of Earth Traveler Sun--which was temporarily allowed to him by his master--resulting in the forces of Shang desperately regrouping at Mount Western Foothills after being pursued by the Zhou forces for a lengthened period of time. Feeling exceedingly deep remorse and fear at the sight of his daughter not being present to any extent, Deng Jiugong felt utterly humiliated at his stupidity for allowing such an incident to come about so easily. Meanwhile back at Phoenix City, Jiang Ziya suggested to Krakucchanda that the marriage between Deng Chanyu and Earth Traveler Sun should not be delayed any further; the latter in return stated his consention. Ordering a maidservant to attend to Chanyu's needs as a resolution, Chanyu, who knew that the situation prior was only a means to seize Jiang Ziya, fell to the ground and began to weep silently at the unfortunate reality of the situation: being married to Earth Traveler Sun. Accepting such circumstances nontheless as being for the benefit of her father above all else, and for any potential chance at seizing Jiang Ziya's life, Deng Chanyu gave herself in to the lustful Earth Traveler Sun, to which the latter unleashed his "inner essence" with keen anticipation throughout that night upon his lover. As Jiang Ziya had confronted the two individuals the following day, Deng Chanyu declared her intentions to persuade her father into surrender, considering the current circumstances. Knowing that Deng Jiugong more than likely possesses a small remaining force at his disposal, and there is a high chance that Chanyu will defect at a moment of advantage if the time arises, Jiang Ziya allowed her leave with a large army under the flag of Zhou, completely prepared to take any measures for the means of success.

Arriving before the camp of Shang after obtaining report on its specific wherabouts from neigboring scouts along the mountain, Chanyu was allowed entrance before her father, to which she not only exclaimed her forced marriage to Earth Traveler Sun, but declared that an alliance with the Western Foothills would be the best choice at hand -- considering the length of time it would take to obtain any potential reinforcements and the strucken morale it would cause to currently assaulted passes under the flag of Shang, encouraging them to submit to the rebelling nobles. Seeing the rationality of her daughter, Deng Jiugong decided that submission is indeed the best option considering the current circumstances. As soldiers of Zhou reported such a statement to Prime Minister Jiang Ziya shortly following, Jiang Ziya joyfully ordered his attendants to march from the city to meet Commandering Deng. Confronting the commander as he arrived, they both took eachother's hand in mutual respect and entered the Silver Security Hall for a banquet of celebration towards their newly confirmed comrade. Many soldiers that escaped from the Western Foothills reported such an incident to Han Rong of Sishui Pass, who in return sent an immediate report to Supreme Minister Zhang Qian of Morning Song. Ascending the Star Picking Mansion in meeting before King Zhou, the king became very wrathful at such an unexpected report, and thus called a conference before his ministers in order to determine how to make up for Deng Jiugong's defection. Fei Lian, who secretly dispised the Shang Dynasty and assisted in any manner that would result in its eventual downfall, suggested that Su Hu, Marquis of Jizhou, should be sent as commander of the expedition -- for he is an imperial relative of the king, and would certainly make every effort to destroy the Western Foothills for the sake of his relation and mutual benefit with the Shang Dynasty. Setting aside Su Hu's original rebellion against the dynasty as simply being a result of bad circumstances, King Zhou sent an imperial decree to Jizhou at once, appointing Su Hu as espeditionary commander against the Western Foothills.