|Western Zhao Invasion Arc|
|Starting Date||Nov 06, 2016|
|Ending Date||May 27, 2020|
|Number of Chapter||147|
← Bureaucrats Job Arc
Zhao Crisis Arc →
Western Zhao Invasion Arc is the 18th story arc of the Kingdom manga.
Preparing the Campaign
|“||We brought in Mou Ki who has seen prodigious growth in the last few years...And to prevent any information from leaking, only the four of us have been tackling the problem of how to take down Gyou...But we can't find even the slightest spark of a successful method. Back during the Coalition War, We were just barely able to come up with a workable plan. Compared to back then, we've had plenty of time to dedicate to this task. But even with a year of brainstorming, our efforts have borne no fruit. Perhaps attacking Gyou really is too reckless of a plan after all...||”|
—Kai Oku, Chapter 496 - Beginning of the Turbulence.
Within the tenth year of Ei Sei's reign as king, after successfully taking Koku You Hills from Zhao's hands, the Qin kingdom turned its attention inwards towards their domestic affair as they take its first steps forward after the shocking events of the State of Ai's rebellion. After his involvement in the rebellion was exposed, Ryo Fui was stripped his rank while the Queen Mother, Bi Ki who was confined in the city of You, returned to Kanyou's Kansen palace. Inside the royal courts, a number of nobles who were too incompetent to achieve positions of prestige banded together. Jealous and wanting the positions of high ranking officials of foreign roots, they devised an edict to expel all foreigners and immigrants from Qin. But with a single shout from Ri Shi, both they and their edict vanished from the stage. Later, we see You, Kou, and princess Rei have a snowball fight as the season turns to winter, and days of peace continued. And then, the eleventh year of reign rises with curtains of turbulence. In order to capture and conquer the state of Zhao quickly, in a way that preserves the resources of the Qin kingdom and does not allow other states like the Chu to invade their back borders, Shou Hei Kun and the tactical team that consists of Kai Oku, Shou Bun Kun, and Mou Ki devised a secret plan. They decided to attack the city of Gyou, which lies close to Kantan the capital of Zhao. The generals and commanders chosen for this campaign are chosen with a good eye on their skills. To catch Zhao by surprise almost all people involved in the campaign should think that the target of the army is not Gyou but the fortifications in western Zhao. Thus only the selected generals and people with special roles have been informed of the true target.
As the army of 200,000 men sets out, general Kan Ki is announced as the general of the first army for his achievements during the Battle of Koku Hills while the "Mountain King" and Da Shang Zhao, Yo Tan Wa is in charge of the second army. The third army is under the command of general Ou Sen, who has also been appointed the supreme commander for the entire campaign. After the announcement, Shou Hei Kun tells Ou Sen that he is allowed to drop the plan to attack Gyou completely, at his own discretion. In return, while alone with Shou Hei Kun, he told him that a deal with Qi has forged.
Heki is nervous and shows his distrust of having Ou Sen as supreme commander due to his experiences while serving under the general during the Sanyou Campaign 8 years prior. Especially when Ou Sen used Heki as bait, keeping him oblivious of the plan. Yet Ka Ryo Ten manages to reassure him by telling him that even Ko Shou of the Qin's Six Great Generals had acknowledged the talent of Ou Sen. Elsewhere, Shin finally decides to take up the glaive, which Great General Ou Ki left him. It is brought to him by Ei Sei and his personal guard. The veteran soldiers of the Hi Shin Unit then recognize their king and bow to him, delaying the start of the march slightly.
During the march towards Kinan where supplies are hidden, the army is allowed to march at moderate speed, including breaks during bad weather. However, Ou Sen increases the speed of their march after he receives an urgent message. They reach Kinan at night time. At that point, the commanders are called to a meeting, where they get informed, that they will set out for Gyou immediately, without resting first, and that they will not march through the Region of Koku You. Any commander allowing one of their squads to fall behind would get executed. Seeing and hearing for the first time, that supplies were hidden in Kinan while fake supplies were sent to Koku You to deceive hidden spies from Zhao shocks most of the commanders even further.
At the same time that the Qin changed heading, Ri Boku and the military advisors found their attention bound by an invading Yan force. After Ri Boku was informed that the Yan led by Ordo and his army will attack the eastern Zhao city Seika city instead of Houshi however he turns his attention towards the Qin attack. Because Seika is where Shi Ba Shou resides, in whom he trusts to keep up with the invading Yan. Shi Ba Shou indeed sets out with his army of 5,000 men to stop the advance from Ordo.
The Qin army is running along the Yellow River attempting to be as fast as possible, while Zhao sends soldiers from some mid and large-sized cities in order to slow them down. Doing this, they hope that the main army will be able to raise a counter against them in time. In the meantime, Ri Boku is trying to convince the King, that he should send out the trained soldiers from Kantan in order to block the Qin. But the king regards them as his personal guards and refuses, which leaves Ri Boku no other choice than to draw troops from the cities surrounding the capital and Gyou.
Ou Sen tasks the Yo Tan Wa Army and the Hi Shin Unit with the attack and capture of Retsubi, a Zhao city near the Yellow River and on the foothills of the Taikou Mountain Ranges, that cannot be ignored due to its size and position. Setting up their defenses and readying for combat, the city's soldiers prepare themselves for combat while riding the high of their impressive moral. Upon seeing this, Shin and Yo Tan Wa ready themselves for their own respective attacks. The Mountain King starts first. Her first move is to completely convert the Zhao soldier's moral into fear, having her own soldiers declare their morals at earth-shattering loudness. Starting the attack with her army's mounted experts leading the charge, her army begins their attack in earnest, suffering casualties until Sou Tan of the Hi Shin Unit and other tribal archers manage to eliminate the Zhao archers. This enables the mountain tribes led by Ba Jio and his unit to capture the city's gate and walls. After opening the gate, the Hi Shin Unit comes rushing and begins its own attack on the inner city's defense soldiers. With their first real battle in front of them, Kan To and the rest of the Hi Shin rookies face trouble as they embarrassingly nearly get wiped out. They are saved by Suu Gen and his personal unit who lectures them on breaking formation. After being saved they witness Den Yuu getting defeated by Rai Ka and his cavalry of resident heavy mounted soldiers. The rookies shudder with fear at the sight of them, but Suu Gen reassures them, turning their attention on Shin wielding General Ou Ki's glaive, which just then descends and instantly cuts the commander in half. Later the veterans and rookies in tandem watch with sheer awe as their captain demonstrate his newly acquired weapon's power, decimating the remaining Rai Ka troops. But upon closer inspection, as pointed by Kyou Kai, they recognize their captain's actual struggle to wield the heavy weapon as he takes too long to swing it.
That night, as he was watching over the captured city Ou Sen hears Shou Hei Kun's carefully crafted plan crumbling within his head as he realizes the Qin Army has fallen for Retsubi's trap and disappears. For the next two days, he along with his personal guard and A Kou went ahead to the city of Gyou, in order to figure out, if it would be possible to conquer it, or if they should abandon their target and the entire campaign altogether. As they arrived, the soldiers are slightly taken back upon seeing the city's ridiculously huge watchtower and the 1st commander of the Ou Sen Army points out that the city is a far cry from the descriptions he's heard as the rumors of large scale renovations under Ri Boku's orders in recent years were true and points that even the most foolish of generals could see that it is no simple city to conquer and capture. Then the question is what will the keen eyes of his lord, Ou Sen will be able to glean from his observations. As they await his answer, underneath a soft breath Ou Sen mumbles to himself "It's perfect..." and states that ''It is the Perfect City. It will not fall to an Attack.''
March on Gyou
The Qin set out, with every last soldier they had and headed towards Gyou. After a short time, the Yo Tan Wa Army broke away, to intercept the attacking Kou Son Ryuu and his army. They managed to hold their advance. In the meantime, Ou Sen surprised even his closest commanders when he ordered them to make a sharp turn and attack a small city on their way. He plundered all their supplies but gave the order not to harm any of the citizens. He sent those citizens to the east. Since they had nothing left, they
followed his orders and fled to the east, thankful, that the "Great General Ou Sen" had spared their lives. After this he attacked another small city, proceeding the same way again, hereby creating a lot of refugees, that head to the east. He went on with this procedure but split his army into three parts so that things would go faster, and a "current" of refugees would emerge from the small cities.
As waves of refugees are arriving upon Gyou, Ou Sen had his forces encircle Gyou. Thus the other side realized that now not only Ou Sen's army had dwindling food supplies. The same now applied to Gyou which had taken in the refugees. The move horrified Ri Boku.
Deferring the Zhao attack forces
As Ri Boku fails to secure Kantan's army to reinforce Zhao forces engaging Qin's, the encirclement of Gyou became complete. But Ou Sen has plans: First, have Kan Ki Army continue the siege and defeat any Zhao liberation forces besides Ryouyou and Atsuyo forces, secondly have Yo Tan Wa Army and Heki Army reinforced with a fraction of Kan Ki's forces and siege Ryouyou's forces. Lastly, Shin's Hi Shin Unit, Ou Hon's Gyoku Hou Unit, and Mou Ten's Gaku Ka Unit alongside Ou Sen Army will attack the Atsuyo's Army. As commander of the Zhao, Ri Boku sent Shun Sui Ju to lead the forces of Ryouyou while he leads the army of Atsuyo.
After dividing his forces, Ou Sen started the battle by organizing his forces. He put Ma Kou and A Kou upon center and right. Leaving only Mou Ten's 5,000 Gaku Ka Unit facing 30,000 Zhao Rigan troops led by Ki Sui and his Army. But Ma Kou has plans, he relieved Mou Ten with his Army after the former almost trapping Ki Sui's right-hand man. While the right with Ba Nan Ji attacking Ma Kou in waves. But Ou Hon, disregarding orders, charged upon the attackers. Ou Sen later tasked Shin with killing Ki Sui with only 800 men. Shin arrived up in Ki Sui's base, but Mou Ten and others are attacking them. Ri Boku appeared behind Ma Kou and killed him. After doing it, Ri Boku retreats with Shin on their trail. Ma Kou Army starts to be disintegrating when Shin met up with Mou Ten and plans to resurrect the Ma Kou Army. Mou Ten concocted a lie that Ma Kou survived the ambush to raise the army's flunking morale and regain lost momentum. Ki Sui was shocked at the outcome when Ma Kou Army regained their strength, putting Shin and Riku Sen on both sides repel Ki Sui and Ba Tei's forces and create rallying points. He gave Ma Kou's catchphrase to every Ma Kou soldiers, raising morale. Ba Tei attacked Shin's position just as Mou Ten expected. Shin and Kyou Kai led Ba Tei's force away and send Gaku Ka force to reinforce Riku Sen. Ki Sui charged on Mou Ten's and the right position. Later that night, Shin found Mou Ten lying among corpses and congratulated him. Ri Boku was notified that his tactic failed.
That night, Mou Ten alongside Shin talks with Ma Kou Army commanders, and the latter said that his tactic is never disobeyed. When a messenger arrives, telling that Mou Ten will be temporarily promoted to General to command the Ma Kou Army as he sees fit. The reason why Mou Ten was lying on the battlefield is when he fell off his horse. Shin was relieved on the left and commanded to return to the center. The second day passed with Mou Ten playing Ki Sui and Ba Tei in his hands.
The right flank, however, took it easy on that day, but Ou Sen decided the right to be his next move.
On the second day, A Kou and Ou Hon set their forces to battle, Ba Nan Ji and his army at the front, Chou Ga Ryuu's on the back with 19,000 strong combined against A Kou's 19,000, Gaku Ei's army with 7,000 against Ou Hon's 4,500 Gyoku Hou Unit. Chou Ga Ryuu bluffed A Kou into sending his forces on his right, then turned to attack the Gyoku Hou's position. Ba Nan Ji attacked A Kou, forcing him to send 8,000 of his men to assist Ou Hon. Hon got an idea and took Ban You, turning to run. They charged upon Ba Nan Ji's forces.
A Ka Kin, 1000-Man Commander of the A Kou Army led his own forces alongside Ou Hon's attack on the flanks. Chou Ga Ryuu divides his forces to chase Gyoku Hou and sent 1,000 men to chase Ou Hon's attack. A Ka Kin charged along with the latter and Ou Hon sent 30 of his men to help him. Later that night, Ou Hon returns to the lines being praised when they cripple Ba Nan Ji beyond fighting shape.
At the center, Shin was frustrated by their failure and inaction in the center when they found out that their supplies were running out.
The 3rd day was seen when Gyou’un, Rin Shou Jou's apprentice was entering the scene on A Kou and Gyoku Hou's position. He alongside Chou Ga Ryuu started an attack at Akou's front, along with his prophecy of their dying master. Ou Hon tried to help A Kou when they were trapped. Ban You was trapped and near death when Shin arrived. As Shin arrived, the momentum draws on the right. Faster than Shin expected, the whole Hi Shin Unit, including Kyou Kai Unit totaling 8,000 men arrived fast, and Ou Sen will never send any more troops on the right.
Due to Hi Shin's appearance, the attack in A Kou Army was softened, using it to re-organize and Ou Hon to reposition. Gyou Un started to attack Shin's line with a heavy cavalry charge, hitting Kan To's position. Sou Jin used his ability to eliminate some horsemen, Kan To, although wounded by a horse stomp, killed Zhao dismounted cavalry. The rest tried to escape but cornered.
10,000 Gyou'un Army vs 8,000 Hi Shin Unit was in attrition attack, where Shou Sa, En, Hai Rou, Bi Hei, and Ga Ro was in mess. Ka Ryo Ten was in mess at tactics, when Shin and Kyou Kai when he knew what Gyou'un's move was about, that he is an Instinctual type, like Shin. He decided to take over the command field. The ensuing battle between Gyou'un and Shin are swinging towards one another, for example, En, Gaku Rai, Bi Hei, Kyo Gai and Ga Ro are in pinch, while So Sui, Na Ki, and Na Ki Clan have wiped their opponents, when Shin sensed that there is something, so he sent Kyou Kai and her Kyou Kai Unit and his reserves on En's position while taking Ten's cavalry unit to face Gyou'un himself.
As the battle between Hi Shin Unit and Gyou'un Army's bulk is fighting, Shin and Gyou'un faced each other. They started insulting and taunting each other while trading blows, the former telling the latter to stay home if he cannot move on with Rin Shou Jo's death, while the latter insults Shin for being lucky when Ou Ki's Glaive fell on his hands. Shin snapped and landed a blow upon Gyou'un, but only deflected by the latter.
While Shin and Gyou'un were dueling, Ka Ryo Ten was thinking of En's position, which was steadily decreasing, until Kyou Kai and her own Kyou Kai Unit made a tactical decision, in which So Sui and the Kaku Bi Unit funnels the left, she approached Ga Ro to do the same, which made the latter call Gaku Rai while Kai and her forces are in the center.
Kyou Kai herself led the attritional battle on her position, resting only to recover her stamina. But at the end of the day, Shin just made a draw with Gyou'un when Hai Rou arrived. Shin tried to chase after the wounded Zhao general but instead faints and passes out due to his wounds. When the latter went to the area where he posted his men, he found Kyou Kai standing among Zhao corpses, remembering someone on Qin's Six Greats.
The third day ended with stalemates, Hi Shin Unit taking casualties, but repelled Gyou'un. Shin and Kyou Kai lying side by side in a tent due to their exhaustion. While Ba Nan Ji, Chou Ga Ryuu, and Gyou'un were resting. The latter saw the potentials of Ou Hon, Shin, Kyou Kai, and Mou Ten. Meanwhile, a report from Gyou arrived. That the city is running out of supplies that are limited to 20 days, as so Ou Sen Army that only limits their supplies for 10 days. Ri Boku just made a decision that Gyou will hold within 10 days.
Many days later, the battle on Ou Sen and Ri Boku was reduced to a staring contest. A Kou briefs his men while they also argue of plundering the cities they capture of their food, while Ou Hon talks of striking Zhao's left commanders in one strike. A Kou objects, deciding striking one Zhao commander per day. They were given Ba Nan Ji, Gaku Ei, Gyou’un or Chou Ga Ryuu. They decided upon Gaku Ei first and A Kou commanded both Hi Shin Unit and Gyoku Hou Unit to strike him down, with A Kou sparing backup. But Ri Boku has a plan and called Ba Nan Ji. Ri Boku told him that A Kou has a weakness.
The day started as A Kou Army took on 3 Zhao Armies led by Ba Nan Ji, Gyou'un, and Chou Ga Ryuu. But A Kou has a tactic focused on full defense, like Ou Sen's defensive tactic. Meanwhile, Hi Shin Unit was put on the front while Gyoku Hou Unit was on the rear against Gaku Ei Army, which was enraged upon Kei Sha's death. Ba Nan Ji stated that he will finish the fight and kill A Kou.
Ten's perception of the Gaku Ei Army was underestimated, when the rage upon Kei Sha's death made them fight at berserk's pace, almost pushing Kyou Kai Unit, Kaku Bi Unit, and Shou Sa. The Gyoku Hou makes their move and Shin alongside Hi Hyou Unit moves as well.
While A Kou Army made defenses just like his master does. But Ri Boku just knew what he does. Ba Nan Ji and Gyou'un made their attacks, shattering the almost solid defense of A Kou Army. A Kou himself stalls Ba Nan Ji, while Gu Nei stalls Gyou'un. the Gyoku Hou Unit meanwhile attacks Gaku Ei's side while Shin and Hi Hyou Unit themselves face Gaku Ei himself. But Gu Nei failed to stall Gyou'un and was killed, and A Kou was trapped by 2 Zhao Generals.
A Kou does his best against both Gyou'un and Ba Nan Ji, inflicting damages on both Generals in a 2-on-1 fight. While on Gyoku Hou's pressure on Gaku'ei Army, a messenger requested Ou Hon to assist A Kou. He reluctantly accepted, leaving Kan Jou to pressure Gaku Ei's men while Shin was going to his position. A Ka Kin saved A Kou in a hair's length after both Gyou'un and Ba Nan Ji nearly missed him and killing his horse.
THe Gyoku Hou and Ou Hon arrived on the area where A Kou and A Ka Kin was being cornered by Gyou'un and Ba Nan Ji. He dueled with the two while retreating. The Gyoku Hou was forced to cover the retreat before A Kou Army cut the two Zhao Generals with the other men going to Ka Ryo Ten's position while requesting Kan Jou that he orders a complete withdrawal of A Kou Army. While on Shin's position, Gaku Ei and Shin faced each other with a little space between them. Gaku Ei reminisced being on Kei Sha's side, rewarded nothing but praise from him in his battles and earning his loyalty, forward to Kei Sha's wake, enraging him and charged upon Shin. The latter closed his eyes and charged too, he opens his eyes and slashed through Gaku Ei, killing him.
As Gaku'ei's body was falling, his men were shocked by the result. Their celebrations were cut short when Chou Ga Ryuu's forces were coming to Ka Ryo Ten's position, she commanded a full retreat, using Kyou Kai Unit as rearguard. Shin also commanded a retreat, with Gaku Ei's men too scared to chase them. Shin's slash through Gaku'ei was also felt by Hou Ken.
Despite efforts to send messages to Ou Sen, he declined to send any more troops or backup. They were reduced to collapsing defensive measures, and both the Gyoku Hou and Hi Shin Units were chewed up by Zhao attacks, and the absence of a commanding officer after A Kou was incapacitated during the last day's fighting.
The day ends with nothing either gained or lost. A Kou Army just fought with full morale though their commander was incapacitated. However, the army wanted Ou Hon to take over the right wing's command. But Ou Sen declined it. Shin overheard Kan Jou and Ban You talk about Ou Hon, which shocked Shin to discover that Ou Sen suspected that Hon was not his son.
The 11th day started with nothing but a back and forth battle, but Qin's right side's rations were running out and A Kou was still unconscious. Ou Hon himself was fighting, and Shin charged, but only went through the line before the day ends.
Night came, and Ten was struggling with her tactics when Ou Hon approached Shin and talked about 'awakening' their men, but both of them have no idea on that. The 12th day started and their men were organizing. Their men almost sapped out of their strength, used the opportunity to greet their individual men. Shin and Hon started the lines with an inspirational message, Hon's were about making their unit from scratch but made his men arise, while Shin started his speech about when they kill Fuu Ki and Ryuu Sen was too nervous on the plan, at the end of the speech, Shin charged through with the rest of his men. They made headway, despite casualties. Shin's suffered casualties from disarrayed charges. Hon's men started making way for their master. A Ka Kin forced the A Kou Army's lieutenant to charge too.
Hi Shin Unit, despite disarrayed, used that as their advantage. While Kan To's group was stalled, they were saved by Kaku Bi Unit's cavalry. When the enemy archers took aim on the horsemen, Suu Gen appeared from behind and killed the archers. Then Zhao tried to charge through with cavalry on Kan To's position, they used Kyou Kai's Gouriki to stop them, and Shou Sa killed the stunned cavalry. Shou Sa commended the rookies, then talked about what Shin does to them. They did so much damage against Chou Ga Ryuu's men, that he decided to withdraw his men, and sent messages to Ba Nan Ji and Gyou'un to fall back.
While Gyou'un was busy on Gyoku Hou Unit, he received the message and forced himself to retreat. Ba Nan Ji too took the message and retreated from A Kou Army's sight. Ka Ryo Ten used the moment to command the unit to charge through to match up Ou Sen Army's pace.
The night came, and the time where the last of the rations were given to soldiers. Instead of lining up, Shin used this opportunity to get heart-to-heart by giving the rations themselves. While on the left side, Mou Ten charged against Ba Tei's position to wreak havoc on their lines. Ou Sen's position moved their men too. But Ri Boku has a plan and sent his tactics on his army's positions.
Night at Zhao lines was easy, as Kaine was given instructions upon the wing commanders. But Gyou'un warned her that her loyalty to Ri Boku was too much like his and Ga Ryuu's loyalty to Rin Shou Jo and hopes that she does not suffer the fate that they suffered, that the young woman rebuffed.
The 13th day started as Hi Shin and Gyoku Hou fights their way to Zhao's left. Ou Sen moves his men carefully, while Den Ri Mi thinks why Sen deliberately abandoned the right-wing. Sou Ou commended his leader for awakening the two units, but Sen only expected Shin's unit to awaken, while his son's, he just gambled on it. Despite it, he knew that Zhao's right will not easily be defeated by the likes of Shin and Hon, but he knew the right-wing will take the victory. Meanwhile, on Zhao lines, Ri Boku and Ga Ryuu had the same idea, crippling one of the two will cripple the right-wing, the duo decided on Ou Hon and his Gyoku Hou Unit.
On the right-wing, Shin and Hon moved their units across the field, fighting both sides, until news that Hon was lost. As per Ri Boku's plan, Gyou'un charged upon Hon while Gaku Ei's own men charge to Shin's position independently. Alongside Gyou'un, his Rai'un Unit was charging, Ban You and Kan Jou tried to halt them, but the 10 Spears, handpicked spearmen charged through the HQ. While Shin was busy fighting Chou Ga Ryuu's men, a detachment of the fallen Gaku Ei's men charged through Kyou Kai Unit.
Gyou'un breached Gyoku Hou's HQ, he and his men deal with 'Ou Hon while other members trap Gyoku Hou's men. Kan Jou sensed something wrong, so he went to his master. Ban You also sensed it, but he was halted by Chou ga Ryuu himself. Kan Jou broke through, yelling to his master to flee while he would stall the enemy. He was attacked and only shielded with his glaive against the slash. But his master returned and saved him. Hon stabbed Gyou'un's arm while his men guarded his sides against the Zhao. But even wounded, Gyou'un returned a slash and threw him unconscious.
The Gyoku Hou retreated, and Kyuu Kou sacrificed himself to let his master escape. After the deed is done, Chou Ga Ryuu retreated. Night came, Shin and Kyou Kai went to Gyoku Hou's HQ to discuss a plan. The plan is, taking over Hi Shin Unit as their main HQ, Shin will be temporarily promoted to commanding both A Kou Army, Hi Shin Unit, and Gyoku Hou Unit, as A Kou and Ou Hon was incapacitated.
The Hi Shin Unit prepared for the battle. Ten was nervous about her tactics when Kai jokingly groped her, as both Kai and Shin replied they were serious about what's happening.
Meanwhile, Chou Ga Ryuu noticed the changes and declared that it is the end of the right-wing.
The battle started earlier than expected, with En and Shou Sa in charge of tactics and strategies, and saving as many savable men, while letting others deliberately to their fates. While the Gyoku Hou faces Gyou'un's army with Ban You as commander.
Hi Shin Unit fought individually, saving only those tactically savable, while isolated and beyond salvation were left to their fates. Kaku Bi Unit and Hi Hyou Unit was acted like weapons. They are faced against Chou Ga Ryuu's army.
The push of the Hi Shin Unit was steady. While both A Kou Army and Gyoku Hou Unit defends the flanks against Ba Nan Ji Army and the remnants of Gaku Ei's army and the Gyou'un Army, respectively. But there is a problem, Kan To and others were trapped within Zhao ranks. Shou Sa went to save them. While on A Kou Army's side, A Ka Kin made a move against Ba Nan Ji. On the Gyoku Hou Unit's side, Ban You went and faced Gyou'un Army's Rai'un Unit.
The battle at the right was going quite roughly on the Zhao side, losing both Chou Ga Ryuu, Gaku Ei and Gyou'un. On the left, despite losing Ko Zen, Mou Ten decided to hold Ki Sui's army. While on the center, Ou Sen and Ri Boku started their own battle.
The battle at Shukai Plains was a victory for Qin.
Meanwhile, Zhao and Yo Tan Wa Army alongside Heki Army, fought Shun Sui Ju and Kou Son Ryuu when the former decided to taunt Yo Tan Wa by killing several mountain men and ordering a retreat. They went to Ryouyou but were shocked when they encountered Quanrong people, whose ancestors made Zhou Kingdom fall to their knees, prepared to face them. She initially commanded Shunmen but was repulsed. Then commanded the Mera and Feego tribes to capture a hill, then rained arrows upon Quan Rong troops. In the meantime, general Heki was ordered to set up a defense line and fight back. The day ends with both sides retreating. Yo Tan Wa rebuffed the Feego King's joke.
3rd day began of Rozo estimating Yo Tan Wa Army's strengths and weaknesses, Mera, Feego, Ba Jio's, and Yo Tan Wa's men are men strong, taking some of their men in battle. But Shun Sui Ju has a plan, involving attacking Heki Army themselves, which was burning Heki Army's supplies. Later, Heki was shocked when half their supplies got burnt. Yo Tan Wa offered her share, but he declined. He later charged at Quanrong ranks but sustained casualties. And all his runners intended to request Kan Ki Army supplies died when ambushed by spare Zhao troop positions.
8th day was reduced to self-defense by Heki Army and Yo Tan Wa's tribesmen are giving their share of food, and infighting was rife until Yo Tan Wa summoned all tribe leaders for a meeting. She suggested killing 3 Quanrong commanders and deliberately inflict themselves heavy casualties, to conserve any supplies that they have. Katari, Feego King, and Ba Jio will lead the 3 armies against the Quanrong. He Ki also offered his army to the battle. Yo Tan Wa agreed to his request and replace Katari with his own.
9th day started with Heki Army's 5,000 men and Mera Tribe's 5,000 men are attacking Bunen's army with 20,000 men, while Danto will face Tork and Ba Jio faces Goba. Yo Tan Wa meanwhile summoned the Enshu Tribe’s Cheiftan Enpo. While Shun Sui Ju already knew their plan all along. He Ki used his heavy shield troops and archers to cut down as many Quanrong horsemen and repair the defense holes left by their charges. He also commanded Mera Tribe's cavalry to charge against the Quanrong detachment.
Then Ba Jio and Feego King started their own battles.
Feego Tribe was also having progress, despite heavy casualties.
Heki Army is having their enemies pushed the farthest. Even though their strength was evenly matched, their ferocity was stronger. Bunen's HQ was near reached by Heki Army itself. But upon reaching the HQ, Bunen's elite troops led by Geeli one-sidedly killed Heki's men, and himself was cornered when the Mera Tribe arrived. But Bunen called his archers and fire on both Mera Tribe and his men.
As the arrow rains in both Quanrong, Heki Army, and Mera Tribe, Kitari tried to rally the men but was wounded. He Ki tried to save her but got wounded in the process. Katari meanwhile, charged upon Bunen. Geeli charged through him and was instantly stabbed. But he held Kitari enough time to Bunen stab him.
As Kitari dies, Katari tried to charge through the enemies, and her fellow tribesmen were thrown into despair, leading to a one-sided massacre. He Ki was forced to retreat and regroup.
Feego Tribe, however, accomplished their task. Despite their numbers was culled in half, Danto managed to corner Tork. He just taunted Tork, which the latter swings his sword, but was stabbed by the Feego King.
On Bajio's side, Bajio made progress against Goba, but the wise Quanrong commander commanded a retreat. Yo Tan Wa tried to block them, but Shun Sui Ju appeared on her rear alongside Rozo. Not only that, but Kou Son Ryuu Army also appeared on the side. Yo Tan Wa created blocking forces and charged right to Goba. She amputated Goba's hands and was killed and ordered a full retreat. The Quanrong and Zhao pursued them.
Katari became the Mera Tribe chieftain and reorganized her forces. But Bunen stopped chasing them and joined other Quanrong and Zhao men to chase Yo Tan Wa Army. But the Mountain King has her plans despite being trapped in. With her forces reorganized, they charged upon the encirclement. She led her forces against both Quanrong and Zhao forces, Ba Jio broke the encirclement and amputated Kou Son Ryuu's sword hand. But the chase for Yo Tan Wa was unrelenting. She was cornered into a corner with Gan Clan, a group of scouts, and several Quanrong when Ba Jio arrived and held her to escape the pursuers and jumped through the cliff.
Despite jumping the cliff, both of them had enough strength to fight several Quanrong until Yo Tan Wa was knocked out and Ba Jio was knocked out, but he fought on until he reached the Mountain King.
Bajio meanwhile used his feral instinct to buy the other tribesmen's time to come to Yo Tan Wa's position. Tajifu and Shunmen with their men arrived and rescued the Mountain King, but Shun Sui Ju's and Rozo's men arrived at the outskirts, but Danto and his tribe, with the head of Tork charges through them.
As Yo Tan Wa exits the forest, Rozo and Shun Sui Ju are busy fighting Danto's men but Bunen and his men arrived at the scene and charged through with his chosen riders while pouring the rest upon the fight. But Katari and Heki arrived, the former charging to chase Bunen, the latter going to assist Danto. The Feego King just said that the Mountain King just played her cards while the barbarians and Zhao are led too far from Ryouyou, as the Enshu Tribe started decimating the Quanrong city.
The battle on Ryouyou was fierce, with Enshu Tribe fought Quanrong guards with wanton strength, while Yo Tan Wa herself was on the Saha Gorge. Danto has difficulties fighting Rozo, while Bunen faced Katari, the latter killing him after amputating the Quanrong commander's hand.
As Danto was dueling with Rozo, Heki tries to break through rough Quanrong lines, the Feego King suffering blows of Quanrong King. But the king used this to make Heki kill Rozo.
After their Quanrong King was defeated, the other Quanrong men surrendered themselves to Yo Tan Wa. Shun Sui Ju went to Ryouyou but was halted by Enshu Tribe, other Yo Tan Wa Army members, and Both the Mountain King and her newfound men, the Quanrong on their tail. The elder of the Quanrong that someone who holds Ryouyou with their lives, the Mountain King referred to, that Yo Tan Wa liberated them from Rozo's tyranny and the Zhao commander's blind eye to their pleas, Yo Tan Wa gave their freedom. And warned Shun Sui Ju that he can retreat, but not attack Gyou, or else, the Quanrong will be his enemies. He retreated. And the Qin, Mountain Armies and Quanrong's first move towards the city, is to eat and regain strength. Despite Kitari distrusting the newfound ally, Mountain King replied that she trusted Mera Tribe when He Ki was brought to her face.
She praised Heki for what he did to Rozo when Shunmen joked about Bajio died of wounds.
She said that the Battle of Ryouyou was just a piece of the main mission, that is preventing both Shun Sui Ju, Zhao and Quanrong to attack Kan Ki Army on Gyou. They succeeded, but instead of moving to Gyou, Shun Sui Ju opted to reinforce Retsubi and seal all efforts of escaping Zhao. She commanded her troops and Heki's men to hold a position on the city in case Zhao made any stupid maneuvers before she leaves.
They tried to resupply Ou Sen but was blocked by an elite Zhao army unit outskirts.
Kan Ki Army was tasked to besiege Gyou and repel any Zhao force that comes their way. Ring Yoku, Rai Do and his Rai Do Clan, Koku’ou, and her force, Zen Ou and his Zen Ou Clan, and Kan Ki himself were being attacked by any Zhao force that tried to relieve Gyou and destroy the Qin invaders.
Later that night, as Gyou was starving, Kan Ki is eating Ma Ron's cooked horse meat with Ogiko, when Rai Do and Koku Ou arrived and see Ring Yoku snoring, the latter being stretched too thin that day. They talked about what Ou Sen thinks about losing Ma Kou.
At the same time, Kan Ki Army was relieved when Zhao forces just encircled them and no movements. But Ma Ron smelled suspicious and told Kan Ki that their survival will be with Yo Tan Wa Army or Ou Sen Army will be victorious and give them food or they are forced to lift the siege of Gyou. Kan Ki accepted Ma Ron's request that if they are running out of food, they will abort the siege.
As their supplies running out, Kan Ki was content maintaining the encirclement. Ma Ron said that their supplies are running thin because of Quoh Clan stealing it. And Zen Ou Clan was threatening him with outright pillaging if their supplies were further reduced. Ma Ron suggests that the Quoh will face Saki Clan, which Kan Ki said that do what he must do, and relayed a message to the Zen Ou Clan that if they pillage food, they will face the whole Kan Ki Army and sarcastically remarked that the Ou Sen Army took their sweet time.
Inside Gyou, several Zhao citizens smelled something wrong, as some people got mixed up with strangers, probably Qin infiltrators.
The hunch is right, as some Ou Sen Army infiltrators were acting inside. They burned every major granary inside Gyou. They entered the city 2 weeks ago. But they were killed after the deed and damage are done. Kan Ki outside the gates knew there is something, and he again sarcastically mutters.
Inside the city, Gyou's leader was alarmed by the news of burning their granaries. He told the messenger to cover up the problem and take inventory on other granaries and stores.
Many days passed, Kan Ki was smirking on his seat while Ogiko was snoring. While his men are doing psychological warfare, and Gyou was on chaos when 2 messengers abound: 1 was about Ri Boku Army was inbound, and Ou Sen Army was bound to arrive.
Ri Boku Army arrived first, faced Rai Do Clan. Then Ou Sen arrived, and Gyou's gates opened up by rebellious refugees, which Zen Ou Clan took advantage of. Ri Boku retreats, in time when a carriage from Kantan arrived to arrest him.
Inside Gyou, the army found no food, to the verge of starvation, until supplies from Qi arrived.
Kai Oku sets out to supply Qin, but was intercepted by Shun Sui Ju retaking Retsubi, he baited them from attacking. They were decoys, as the true supplies were ferried to Yellow River with all of Qin's flotilla. But they were also failed to reach Gyou, as Zhao also blocked the river. Unknown to them, and only Shou Hei Kun knew that they can rely on Qi for supplies, as they have a river route to Gyou, for a fee of course.
While another army under Tou was due to arrive, as Ri Boku feared that the battle of Gyou will be sending aid to new armies that will besiege Retsubi, with Ryouyou and Gyou in Qin's hands. But Kaku Kai ignored his pleas.
City lord of Seika City
Lord of Gyou
5000 man commander
Commander of Zhao's Eastern border
- The Hi Shin Unit is allowed to set out from the capital Kanyou.
- After mastering the use of glaives, Shin decides to take up Ou Ki's Glaive.
- Ou Sen's abilities were acknowledged by Ko Shou.
- Rin Shou Jo makes his full official appearance through flashbacks.
- With 147 chapters, this is by far the longest story arc in the manga.
- The main target of this campaign is the city of Gyou in the inner regions of Zhao.
- The Qin attacked with 3 armies with Ou Sen appointed as the supreme commander.
- As commanded by Shou Hei Kun, Ou Sen was allowed to drop the plan to attack Gyou as he sees fit in case of any unexpected surprises. But even as he learned of Retsubi's trap, he never dropped the idea and instead modify it using his form of psychological warfare by using the refugees.
- Yo Tan Wa started the attack upon Zhao forces under Kou Son Ryuu.