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  1. #281
    Chapter 47

    Afterthe Sino-Japanese war, the Japanese army didn't retreat from theChinese territory. They stayed in the northeastern part of China.There were three provinces in that part. Russia also had its armythere. Russian army had entered that part during the riot of Yihetuanand had stayed there ever since. A war between Russia and Japanseemed inevitable.
    Whenat last Russia and Japan both declared war against each other, allother countries that had troops in China proclaimed that they wouldkeep neutral. Japan notified Qing government that China should alsokeep neutral. It sounded ridiculous that they would fight on the landof China and wanted China to remain neutral. It was like twointruders fought in someone's house and the owner shouldn't sayanything about it. But Qing government was too weak then to doanything to prevent the war that happened in its own territory. Butstrict neutralness was impossible. Japan had bribed Prince Yikuangand so the attitude of Qing government favored Japan. They allowedJapan to recruit the horse robbers there to fight Russia. Under thesecret help of Qing government Japan defeated Russia in LiaodongPeninsular.
    Russiahad a fleet in the harbor of Luda. Japan sank some ships at the mouthto block the escape of Russian fleet. There was a low hill at theother side of the harbor. If Japan could occupy the low hill Japanwas able to wipe out the Russian fleet. So the combat was focused onthe low hill. At last Japanese army took over the hill and controlledthe situation. The Russian fleet had to surrender.
    Thenext battle centered around Liaoyang City. Russia gathered fourhundred thousand strong and Japan had three hundred thousand. Theircombat front line lasted hundreds of kilometers. A Japanesedetachment went a roundabout way to the back of the Russian troops.When the Russian commander found it out, his troops were alreadysurrounded. But to surround four hundred thousand strong with onlythree hundred thousand soldiers was not easy. So the Russian troopsbroke out of the encirclement. Both sides were weakened in thatbattle and they had to have an unproclaimed truce.

  2. #282
    TwoRussian fleets came to the east from the Black Sea round the Cape ofGood Hope. When they reached the Yellow Sea, they were ambushed byJapanese fleets and all their warships were destroyed. But Russianarmy got reinforcement. It seemed that no one could win the war.Through the mediation of America, Russia and Japan signed a peacetreaty.
    Thewar between Russia and Japan was over, but their armies stillremained in China. Other foreign countries insisted that both Russianand Japanese armies should be withdrawn from the domain of China.When the three provinces were returned to Qing government, thereshould be three governors for these provinces. Official Duan Zhiguiliked to govern Heilongjiang Province. He wished to bribe PrinceYikuang, the head secretary of state, but someone advised him that itshould be better to bribe the son of Prince Yikuang. It was easybecause the son was a sucker for beautiful girls. To get a beautifulgirl didn't need a lot of money.
    Sometroupes began to train actresses. Yang Cuixi was a celebratedactress. Official Duan invited the son to watch an opera starring theactress Yang. From his look, Official Duan could conclude that hefell in love with the actress Yang at the first sight, like a flyfell unconsciously into the web of a spider. The actress Yang hadbeen sold to the troupe by her poor parents. Official Duan found thetroupe owner and paid him the double price and freed the girl fromthe troupe. The owner looked upon the actress Yang, a celebrity now,as the goose that lays the golden eggs, but he didn't dare to refusethe offer of an official. He had to part with the goose.
    OfficialDuan bought a house and let the actress Yang live there. Then heinvited the son to dinner in the house. When the son arrived andsettled down at the table, Official Duan excused himself that he mustgo to wash his hands. Actually he left the house, leaving the son andthe actress Yang together. The son waited for Official Duan toreturn, but to his surprise he saw the actress Yang come into theroom instead. She went to sit on his lap, smiling at him. He wasyoung and good-looking, plus a nobleman. He embraced her and kissedher on the cheek. She offered a cup of wine (no glass yet at thattime. A china cup was used for the wine) to him, but he said, “Ilike to drink wine from the fleshy cup, sweetie.” Her supple bodywrithed a bit on his lap, which meant that she was too shy to do it.At his persistence, she sucked the wine from the cup into her mouthand pressed her lips tightly against his lips. Then she fed the winefrom her mouth into his mouth. Her mouth served as the cup made ofhuman flesh. He swallowed the wine and sighed with satisfaction. “Howsweet, honey.” He whispered into her ear. He carried her into thebedroom, which was just in the back. They stripped naked and fell onthe bed in a tangled human knot, the bed groaning under theircombined weight.
    OfficialDuan got the position of the governor of Heilongjiang Province, butthe Japanese army was not withdrawn yet. He had to wait patiently.


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