I now proceed to condense volume 42 of The Ravages of Time.
- Chapter 333: The last man of his village overwhelms Xiahou Dun only to be killed by Xiahou Yuan.
- Chapter 334: Tian De lures Sima Yi into also supporting Yuan Tan on the side.
- Chapter 335: Jia Kui’s agents deliver Xu Yuan’s head and abduct Xu You’s five sons.
- Chapter 336: Cao Cao threatens Xu You into revealing the ‘real’ rations depot.
- Chapter 337: Yuan Tan and Yuan Shang mobilize in an attempt to take credit for the win.
- Chapter 338: Cao Cao’s disguised night riders instigate a fight between Yuan Tan and Yuan Shang.
- Chapter 339: Yuan Fang tricks Cao Cao’s special troop and burns Gushi.
- Chapter 340: Yuan Fang tricks Yuan Shao with his legitimate sons and burns Wuchao.
This volume basically features the high point of the struggle between Cao Cao and Yuan Shao (with Yuan Fang having his own plans), as the battle in Guandu commences along with the night raids in Wuchao and Gushi. Several crucial schemes and betrayals take place, leading to the surprise twist of Yuan Fang gaining the upper hand for this campaign at the expense of Cao Cao (the external enemy) and Yuan Shao (the internal enemy and the target of Yuan Fang’s vendetta). Sima Yi also gets special attention for his attempted schemes against Yuan Fang (done in order to further his own revenge plan against Cao Cao). Lastly, the common soldier subplot ends on a depressing note.