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Chapter 075-02 형주 함락

  關公箭瘡既愈,設席款謝華佗。佗曰:「君侯箭瘡雖治,然須愛護。切勿怒氣傷觸。過百日後,平復如舊矣。」關公以金百兩酬之。佗曰:「某聞君侯高義,特來醫治,豈望報乎?」堅辭不受,留藥一帖,以敷瘡口,辭別而去。

  卻說關公擒了于禁,斬了龐德,威名大震,華夏皆驚。探馬報到許都。曹操大驚,聚文武商議曰:「某素知雲長智勇蓋世,今據荊襄,如虎生翼。于禁被擒,龐德被斬,魏兵挫銳;倘彼率兵直至許都,如之奈何?孤欲遷都以避之。」

  司馬懿諫曰:「不可。于禁等被水所渰,非戰之故,於國家大計,本無所損。今孫,劉失好,雲長得志,孫權必不喜。大王可遣使去東吳陳說利害,令孫權暗暗起兵躡雲長之後,許事平之日,割江南之地以封孫權,則樊城之危自解矣。」主簿蔣濟曰:「仲達之言是也。今可即發使往東吳,不必遷都動眾。」

  操依允,遂不遷都;因歎謂諸將曰:「于禁從孤三十年,何期臨危反不如龐德也!今之一面遣使致書東吳,一面必得一大將以當雲長之銳。」

  言未畢,階下一將應聲而出曰:「某願往。」操視之,乃徐晃也。操大喜,遂發精兵五萬,令徐晃為將,呂建副之,剋日起兵,前到陽陵陂駐紮;看東南有應,然後征進。

  卻說孫權接得曹操書信,覽畢,欣然應允,即修書發付使者先回,乃聚文武商議。張昭曰:「近聞雲長擒于禁,斬龐德,威震華夏,操欲遷都以避其鋒。今樊城危急,遣使求救,事定之後,恐有反覆。」

  權未及發言,忽報呂蒙乘小舟自陸口來,有事面稟。權召入問之。蒙曰:「今雲長提兵圍樊城,可乘其遠出,襲取荊州。」權曰:「孤欲北取徐州,如何?」蒙曰:「今操遠在河北,未暇東顧。徐州守兵無多,往自可克;然其地勢利於陸戰,不利水戰,縱然得之,亦難保守。不如先取荊州,全據長江,別作良圖。」權曰:「孤本欲取荊州,前言特以試卿耳。卿可速為孤圖之。孤當隨後便起兵也。」

  呂蒙辭了孫權,回至陸口。早有哨馬報說:「沿江上下,或二十里,或三十里,高阜處各有烽火臺。」又聞荊州軍馬整肅,預有準備,蒙大驚曰:「若如此,急難圖也。我一時在吳侯面前勸取荊州,今卻如何處置?」尋思無計,乃託病不出,使人回報孫權。權聞呂蒙患病,心甚怏怏。陸遜進言曰:「呂子明之病,乃詐耳,非真病也。」權曰:「伯言既知其詐,可往視之。」

  陸遜領命,是夜至陸口寨中,來見呂蒙,果然面無病色。遜曰:「某奉吳侯命,敬探子明貴恙。」蒙曰:「賤軀偶病,何勞探問?」遜曰:「吳侯以重任付公,公不乘時而動,空懷鬱結,何也?」蒙目視陸遜,良久不語。遜又曰:「愚有小方,能治將軍之疾,未審可用否?」蒙乃屏退左右而問曰:「伯言良方,乞早賜教。」遜笑曰:「子明之疾,不過因荊州兵馬整肅,沿江有烽火臺之備耳。予有一計,令沿江守吏,不能舉火;荊州之兵,束手歸降,可乎?」

  蒙驚謝曰:「伯言之語,如見我肺腑。願聞良策。」陸遜曰:「雲長倚恃英雄,自料無敵,所慮者惟將軍耳。將軍乘此機會,託疾辭職,以陸口之任讓之他人,使他人卑辭讚美關公,以驕其心,彼必盡撤荊州之兵,以向樊城;若荊州無備,用一旅之師,別出奇計以襲之,則荊州在掌握之中矣。」蒙大喜曰:「真良策也!」


29 When the cure was well advanced, Guan Yu gave a fine banquet in honor of Hua Tuo and offered him a fee of a hundred ounces of gold.

30 But Hua Tuo declined it, saying, "I had come to treat you, O General, from admiration of your great virtue and not for money. Although your wound is cured, you must be careful of your health, and especially avoid all excitement for a hundred days, when you will be as well as ever you were."

31 Then Hua Tuo, having prepared dressings for the wound, took his leave, refusing fees to the very last.

32 Having captured Yu Jin and accomplished the death of Pang De, Guan Yu became more famous and more fear-inspiring through the empire than even before. Cao Cao called together his advisers to help him decide upon what he should do.

33 Said Cao Cao, "I must acknowledge this Guan Yu as the one man who, in skill and valor, overtops the whole world. Lately he has obtained possession of Jingzhou and the territory near it, and has so become very terrible. He is a tiger with wings added. Pang De is no more; Yu Jin is his prisoner; the armies of Wei have lost their morale; and if he led his armies to Xuchang, we should be helpless. I can only think of avoiding the peril by removal of the capital. What think you?"

34 "No, do not take that step," said Sima Yi, rising to reply. "Yu Jin and all the others you lost were victims of the flood and slain in battle. These losses do no harm at all to your great plan. The Suns and Lius are no longer friends since Guan Yu has accomplished his desire. You may send a messenger into Wu to foment the quarrel and cause Sun Quan to send his armies to attack the army of Guan Yu from the rear, promising that, when things are tranquil, you will reward the south to Sun Quan. In this way you will relieve Fancheng."

35 Here Minister Jiang Ji said, "Sima Yi speaks well, and the messenger should lose no time. Do not move the capital and disturb the people."

36 Cao Cao therefore did not carry out his first proposal.

37 But he was sad at the loss of Yu Jin, and spoke of him affectionately, "Yu Jin had followed me faithfully for thirty years, yet in that moment of truth he was less than Pang De."

38 It was necessary to send someone with the letters to Wu and also to find another leader willing to face Guan Yu. Cao Cao had not long to wait for the latter, as an officer stepped out from the ranks of those in waiting and offered himself. It was Xu Huang.

39 Xu Huang's offer was accepted, and he was given fifty thousand of veterans. Lu Qian was sent as his second, and the army marched to Yangling Slope, where they halted to see if any support was coming from the southeast.

40 Sun Quan fell in with the scheme of Cao Cao as soon as he had read Cao Cao's letter. He at once prepared a reply for the messenger to take back, and then gathered his officers, civil and military, to consult. Zhang Zhao was the first speaker.

41 "We know Guan Yu has captured one leader and slain another. This has added greatly to his fame and reputation. Cao Cao was going to move the capital rather than risk an attack. We also know that Fancheng is in imminent danger. Cao Cao has asked for our help; but when he has gained his end, I doubt whether he will hold to his promise."

42 Before Sun Quan had replied they announced the arrival of Lu Meng, who had come in a small ship from Lukou with a special message. He was at once called in and asked what it was.

43 Said Lu Meng, "The armies of Guan Yu being absent at Fancheng, the opportunity should be taken to attack Jingzhou."

44 "But I wish to attack Xuzhou in the north. What of this plan?" said Sun Quan.

45 "It would be better to attack Jingzhou, and so get control of the Great River. Cao Cao is far away to the north and too occupied to regard the east. Xuzhou is weakly held and could be taken easily, but the lie of the land favors the use of an army rather than a navy force. If you capture it, it will not be easy to hold. But once you hold Jingzhou, you can evolve other schemes."

46 "Really, my desire was to attack Jingzhou, but I wished to hear what you would say to the other plan. Now, Sir, make me a plan speedily, and I will act upon it."

47 So Lu Meng took his leave and went back to Lukou. But soon they heard that Guan Yu had had beacon towers erected at short distances all along the Great River, and that the army of Jingzhou was being put into most efficient condition.

48 "If this is so, it is hard to make a plan that will ensure success," said Lu Meng. "I have already advised my master to attack Jingzhou, but I am unable to meet this complication."

49 Therefore he made illness an excuse to stay at home, and sent to inform Sun Quan, who was very distressed at the news.

50 Then said Lu Xun, "The illness is feigned. He is quite well."

51 "If you know that so well, go and see," said Sun Quan.

52 Away went Lu Xun and speedily arrived at Lukou, where he saw Lu Meng, who indeed appeared to be in perfect health. Nor did his face bear any signs of recent illness.

53 "The Marquis of Wu has sent me to inquire after your honorable complaint," said Lu Xun.

54 "How distressed I am that the state of my wretched carcass has caused the Marquis the inconvenience of inquiring" replied Lu Meng.

55 "The Marquis placed a very heavy responsibility on your shoulders, but you are not making the best use of the opportunity. However, what is the real origin of your distress?"

56 Lu Meng sat gazing at his visitor a long time without replying.

57 "I have a little remedy," said Lu Xun. "Do you think you might use it?"

58 Lu Meng dismissed the servants, and when the two were alone, he said, "This remedy, my friend, please tell me what it is."

59 "Your ailment is due simply to the efficiency of the Jingzhou soldiers. I know how to keep the beacons from flaring, and I can make the defenders of Jingzhou come to you with their hands tied. Would that cure you?"

60 "My friend, you speak as if you saw into my inmost heart. Pray unfold your good scheme."

61 "Guan Yu thinks himself too much of a hero for anyone to dare to face him, and his only anxiety is yourself. Now you must take advantage of this excuse you have made of illness actually to resign this post, so that the pretense may be kept up and another person be appointed to your place. Let this person, your successor, humbly praise Guan Yu till that general becomes so conceited that he will withdraw all the troops from Jingzhou to send them against Fancheng. When Jingzhou is left undefended then is our chance, and the city will fall into our hands."

62 "The plan seems most excellent," said Lu Meng.




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