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Chapter 069-04 점쟁이 관로

  二人聞之,撫掌稱善。褘曰:「吾有心腹二人,與操賊有殺父之仇,現居城外,可用為羽翼。」耿紀問是何人。褘曰:「太醫吉平之子:長名吉邈,字文然;次名吉穆,字思然。操昔為董承衣帶詔事,曾殺其父。二子逃竄遠鄉,得免於難。今已潛歸許都。若使相助討賊,無有不從。」

  耿紀,韋晃大喜。金褘即使人密喚二吉。須臾,二人至。褘具言其事。二人感憤流淚,怨氣沖天,誓殺國賊。金褘曰:「正月十五日夜間,城中大張燈火,慶賞元宵。耿少府,韋司直,你二人各領家僮,殺至王必營前;只看營中火起,分兩路殺入;殺了王必,逕跟我入內,請王子登五鳳樓,召百官面諭討賊。吉文然兄弟於城外殺入,放火為號,各要揚聲,叫百姓誅殺國賊,截住城內救軍;待天子降詔,招安已定,便進兵殺奔鄴郡擒曹操,即發使齎詔召劉皇叔。今日約定,至期二更舉事,勿似董承自取其禍。」五人對天說誓,歃血為盟,各自歸家,整頓軍馬器械,臨期而行。

  且說耿紀,韋晃二人,各有家僮三四百,預備器械。吉邈兄弟,亦聚三、四百人口,只推圍獵。安排已定。金褘先期來見王必,言:「方今海宇稍安,魏王威震天下;今值元宵令節,不可不放燈火,以示太平氣象。」王必然其言,告諭城內居民,盡張燈結彩,慶賞佳節。至正月十五夜,天色晴霽,星月交輝。六街三市,競放花燈。真個金吾不禁,玉漏無催!

  王必與御林諸將,在營中飲宴。二更以後,忽聞營中吶喊,人報「營後火起!」王必慌忙出帳看時,只見火光亂滾;又聞喊殺連天,知是營中有變,急上馬出南門,正遇耿紀,一箭射中肩膊,幾乎墜馬,遂望西門而走。背後有車趕來。王必著忙,棄馬步行,至金褘門首,慌叩其門。原來金褘一面使人於營中放火;一面親領家僮隨後助戰,只留婦女在家。

  時家中聞王必叩門之聲,只道金褘歸來。褘妻從隔門便問曰:「王必那廝殺了麼!」王必大驚,方俉金褘同謀,逕投曹休家報知金褘,耿紀等同謀反。休急披挂上馬,引千餘人在城中拒敵。城內四下火起,燒著五鳳樓,帝避於深宮。曹氏心腹爪牙,死據宮門。城中但聞人叫:「殺盡曹賊,以扶漢室!」

  原來夏侯惇奉曹操命,巡警許昌,領三萬軍,離城五里屯紮;是夜遙望見城中火起,便領大軍前來,圍住許都,使一枝軍入城接應。曹休直混殺至天明。耿紀,韋晃等無人相助。人報金褘,二吉皆被殺死。耿紀,韋晃,奪路殺出城門,正遇夏侯惇大軍圍住,活捉去了。手下百餘人皆被殺。夏侯惇入城,救滅遺火,盡收五人老小宗族,使人飛報曹操。操傳令教將耿,韋二人,及五家宗族老小,皆斬於市,並將在朝大小百官,盡拏解鄴郡,聽侯發落。


89 Hearing Jin Yi's plan, the others clapped their hands in approval.

90 "And I have two friends outside of the city who will go with us," said Jin Yi. "Both of them have the murder of a father to avenge. We can get their helps."

91 "Who are they?"

92 "They are sons of the great physician Ji Ping and are called Ji Mao and Ji Mu. Cao Cao put their father to death for his connection with the plot organized by Dong Cheng, when Dong Cheng received the secret edict conveyed in the robe and girdle, which was conferred upon him by the Emperor. The two sons escaped that time by flight, but they have since secretly returned to the capital. With their help all will go well."

93 Geng Ji and Wei Huang rejoiced at the prospect of further help, and a messenger was sent to call in the two Ji brothers. Soon they arrived, and the plot was laid before them. They were deeply affected and shed copious tears. Their wrath rose to the sky, and they swore to aid in the destruction of the rebel.

94 "On the fifteenth day of the first month there will be grand illuminations in the city," said Jin Yi, "and felicitations will continue on every side. Geng Ji and Wei Huang will each lead out their retainers and make their way quickly to Wang Bi's camp to wait till they see the fire begin. Then they will dash in, slay Wang Bi, and follow me inside the Palace. We will then request the Emperor to ascend the Tower of the Five Phoenixes, assemble his officers, and issue orders to destroy the rebels. The two Ji brothers will make their way into the city and set fires going. Then all will raise their voices and summon the populace to their aid. They are to hold up any rescue force in the city till the Emperor has issued the edict and disturbance is allayed, when they will rush toward Yejun and seize Cao Cao. Then a messenger will be dispatched with a summons for Liu Bei, the Imperial Uncle. We will begin our work that night at the second watch, and we will escape the ill success that attended Dong Cheng's attempt."

95 All five swore before Heaven to be true, and they smeared their lips with blood in earnest of their oath. After this, each returned to his own home to prepare arms and call up their people.

96 Geng Ji and Wei Huang each had four or five hundred retainers, whom they armed. Ji Mao and Ji Mu also got together three hundred men. They gave out a story of a hunting party to explain the gathering.

97 When the preparations were complete, and before the time fixed for the rising, Jin Yi went to see Wang Bi.

98 Said Jin Yi, "Everything in the world seems now tranquil, and the power of the Prince of Wei extends over all the land. It is a season of joy and felicitation, and you can organize a lantern festivity, and people shall hang out lanterns and put up decorations for the occasion."

99 So Wang Bi issued guidelines for a Feast of Lanterns in the city. The night of full moon was very clear, moon and stars most brilliant. The people of the capital took advantage of the night and thronged the streets and the market places. The lanterns were hung out in profusion, and all went merrily.

100 No official interfered with the crowd; 
No one thought of the flight of time; 
All was simple gaiety.

101 That night the Commander of the Imperial Guards, Wang Bi, and his officers had a feast in their camp. Just after the second watch had begun, they heard a great shouting in the camp, and someone came in to say that a fire had started in the rear. Wang Bi hurriedly left the table and went outside. He saw flames leaping up and rolling by and heard shouts of "Kill!" rising on every side and echoing to the very sky. He thought the camp had certainly mutinied, and, jumping on his horse, went out at the south gate. Just outside he ran against Geng Ji, who loosed an arrow which struck him in the shoulder. He nearly fell with the shock, but he got away toward the west gate. He found he was pursued by armed men, so he got flurried, dismounted, and went on foot. Presently he came to the house of Jin Yi and hammered at the door.

102 Now the fire that had created such a scare had been raised by Jin Yi's own people sent for that purpose, and Jin Yi had followed them to fight when the time came. Hence there was no one but the woman folks left in his house. When the women heard the clamor at the door, they thought Jin Yi had come back.

103 Jin Yi's wife, from the door of the women's quarter, called out, "Have you killed Wang Bi?"

104 This was a shock, but it told Wang Bi that his quondam friend was now an enemy.

105 Wherefore Wang Bi fled further to the house of Cao Xiu and told him, "Geng Ji and Jin Yi have raised a disturbance."

106 Cao Xiu immediately armed himself, got to horse, and led out a thousand troops. He found fires on all sides, and the Tower of the Five Phoenixes was in flames. The Emperor had fled into the recesses of the Palace, but Cao Cao's friends and partisans were defending the Palace gates like grim death.

107 In the city the crowd was shouting one to another: "Slay Cao Cao and restore the Hans!"

108 When Xiahou Dun had received thirty thousand troops and the command to keep watch and ward over the capital, he had gone into camp three miles from the city. When he saw the conflagration start, he set the army in motion and surrounded the city. He also sent reinforcements to Cao Xiu within.

109 Inside the city the fighting went on all night. No one joined the conspirators; the small band were left to their own efforts. Soon it was reported that Jin Yi, Ji Mao, and Ji Mu were slain. Geng Ji and Wei Huang found their way to one of the gates, but there they met Xiahou Dun's main force and were made prisoners. The handful of men with them were cut to pieces.

110 When the fighting subsided, Xiahou Dun went into the city and set his troops to put out the fires. He also laid hands on the whole households of the five conspirators. Then he sent a report to Cao Cao, who sent back orders to execute the two conspirators and put to death in public all the members of the five families. He was also to arrest every official and send the whole batch to Yejun for interrogations.




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