Portal:Investiture of the Gods/Chapter 57

Investiture of the Gods
The Resolve of Su Hu
Xu Zhonglin or Lu Xixing

This chapter is titled "The Resolve of Su Hu". As the royal messenger had been received with customary rites of incense burning while being seen off shortly following, Su Hu announced that evening before his fellow generals and relatives that he has been appointed as expeditionary commander: An opportunity that he could easily seize in order to ally himself with the Western Foothills as he intended for far too long. Obtaining mutual consent amongst the greater whole of his generals with such intentions in mind, Su Hu gathered an army of 100,000 soldiers before leaving Jizhou and marching swiftly to the Western Foothills. Camping immediately upon his arrival, three days passed without any sign of movement on the part of the Shang forces. Obtaining report that Su Hu is the expeditionary commander, and will more than likely submit out of his past dissatisfication against King Zhou, Yellow Flying Tiger approached the camp of Shang upon Jiang Ziya's consention; and to his surprise, a man by the name of Zhao Bing charged defiantly from the camp, feriously clashing his blade against the former's. As Yellow Flying Tiger easily took Zhao Bing captive that morning, Zheng Lun, who had no intention whatsoever to serve the Western Foothill cause in the name of his honor, informed his commander that Yellow Flying Tiger, the former rebel of the Shang Dynasty, has mercilessly taken Zhao captive without a second thought, to which Su Hu retorted by ordering the former to do battle with the rebel, for it would assist both the Western Foothills and that of his reputation under the Shang Dynasty if such an individual were to be disposed of.

Successfully capturing Yellow Flying Tiger as suggested the following morning, Su Hu was enraged at the rebel's conjectured behavior, and thus ordered him to be thrown into the gaouls temporarily. Jiang Ziya, who became alarmed at the report of his comrade's capture, was approached by Huang Tianhua, who possessed the intention to meet this "Zheng Lun" in battle. With the Prime Minister's consent, Tianhua approached the battlefield but only received the same fate as his master by the hands of Zheng Lun, while any other soldiers of Zhou that had the intention of reconciliation on the part of Shang were beheaded, much to the lack of Su Hu's knowledge. Knowing clearly that even if any of his soldiers were to leak such information to his commander, Su Hu would be convinced to destroy Jiang Ziya as a prospect of not only doing away with the country's "evil" for the sake of saving King Wu, but to prevent any potential attack from neighboring comrades, who would be eager to acquire the title of expeditionary commander as their own while easily being able to kill Su Hu with the former evidence of his deceit. Realizing that Su Hu had no intentions for reconciliation whatsoever, dispite Yellow Flying Tiger's words, Jiang Ziya deployed both Earth Traveler Sun and Deng Chanyu to the front, to which they were confronted by Zheng Lun. Laughing heartily at a mere young lad approaching him and boasting many words of overconfidence, Zheng Lun disasociated himself from Chanyu and began to lunge violently upon Earth Traveler Sun. Realizing that the pesky kid had great speed and sank beneath the ground whenever a threatening blow was issued forth, Zheng Lun, who began to perspire in his frustration, unleashed two beams of light that forced Sun into unconsciousness, resulting in easy capture. Unfortunately however, at the very moment he commanded his crow soldiers to take the captive back to their main camp, Chanyu seized the moment to launch a golden pebble into Zheng Lun's forehead at incredible speed, forcing him into retreat with his face covered in blood.

As Earth Traveler Sun was successfully placed before the feet of Su Hu, the latter ordered his immediate execution through beheadment, knowing that it would be far too risky to keep a young boy that supposedly possesses such a rare ability alive. Escaping through the ground as he broke free from his bonds in fear, both Su Hu and Zheng Lun became enraged at such a turn of events, and thus became resolved to attack the city the following morning. Zheng Lun, who adopted such determination, was confronted by Nezha after essentially healing his wound -- even though he intended to see Chanyu, who he greatly hated for humiliating his pride. Realizing very shortly that the man confronting him is a celestial with great renown in the art of spear, Zheng Lun deployed his beams of light consecutively; but alas, for it did not have any effect on Nezha whatsoever. Being striken with fear at his trump card being of lack, Nezha impatiently thrusted forthward his Univeral Ring, breaking the bones within Zheng Lun's back and forcing his soldiers to assist him into retreat. Su Hu, who became saddened and enraged in entirety at the condition of his general, declared that the ability of Jiang Ziya's generals is evidentially dangerous, and surrender may be the better option in order to ensure that the rebel commander falls internally one way or the other for the benefit of King Wu. Seeing his commander's words as being rational and more potentially profitable than of any detriment, Zheng Lun still embraced the pride and honor within his heart and fully declared that he will find one way or the other in order to ensure that Jiang Ziya and his generals fall by the resolve wielded in his two hands. Resolved to give in to the Western Foothills only when his head is separated from his body, Su Hu knew the situation could not heed his fellow comrade, and thus approached Yellow Flying Tiger and began to show him great kindness in hopes to eventually seize Jiang Ziya's life in the name of his virtue. Preparing a feast and allowing Yellow Flying Tiger passage back to Phoenix City in open arms, Su Hu began to form a written letter to Prime Minister Jiang Ziya stating mutual cooperation in a pre-set night raid that will end in Zheng Lun's capture on the side of Zhou.

However, at this same point in time, a man by the name of "Lu Yue" was allowed enterence within the Shang camp, to which he declared his intentions to dispose of Rebel Commander Jiang Ziya by order of Shen Gongbao. Allowing this man a seating within the camp, who was of Taoist heritage, he requested to see Zheng Lun upon hearing of the latter's many cries of pain, and thus healed his wounds with a mere droplet of water as a showing of his magical renown being far exceeding that of an ordinary Taoist. Zheng Lun, who was grateful beyond words, declared Lu Yue as "master" while falling to the ground in formal kowtow. Waiting several days following and disallowing Su Hu to send any further "mutual" communication with the Zhou forces--thus disposing of his prior intentions--Lu Yue acquired the assistance of four Taoist men who known as Zhou Xin, Li Qi, Zhu Tianlin, and Yang Wenhui. As Su Hu took notice of these four individuals, he knew that his chances of success against Jiang Ziya were heightened, but due to not being able to enforce his former words to Yellow Flying Tiger, he felt a level of shame and embarassment. Now that Lu Yue obtained the mutual support of the Shang army, he sent forth one of his four disciples to do battle against the Phoenix City.