General Tsang stood on the wall and observed the vast army of the undead. Their forms were twisted and mangled, in various states of decay. They made way as Dragonhand walked through the crowd, followed by Lickspittle and his zombapault.
“I hate to be the kind of man that says, ‘I told you so,’ Zhen,” the general said.
“Then don’t,” Advisor Zhen replied.
“Pitiful dogs!” General Tsang shouted down to the undead masses. “How dare you approach the walls of the Forbidden City in such a threatening manner?”
Dragonhand looked up at the general. “I am Dragonhand, destroyer of all of the great kung fu clans and lord and master over all that I desire. I have come for the Emperor’s brain.”
The general scoffed. “Begone, vile beast! The Emperor’s brain is his and his alone!”
General Tsang watched as one of Dragonhand’s warriors climbed into the bucket of the zombapault.
“These fools take us for cowards,” General Tsang said. “Cousin Nianzu!”
“Sir?” Nianzu replied.
“Deliver a barrage of arrow fire,” General Tsang commanded. “Show them the penalty for trespassing upon the Emperor’s lands.”
“Right away, sir,” Nianzu said. “Archers, to your stations!”
Over a hundred archers took up positions atop the wall, bows and arrows at the ready.
“Prepare to strike on my command,” General Tsang said. “Aim for their ugly heads for only the piercing of their wretched brains will put these animals out of commission.”
Advisor Zhen stared down at Dragonhand. The brain bite clan’s master looked up at the fat little man and winked.
“Belay that order,” the advisor said.
“Silence, Zhen,” General Tsang said. “I’ll tolerate no more of your stupidity.”
“Belay that order!” the advisor shouted.
The general and the advisor stared each other down.
“On what authority do you belay my order?” General Tsang asked.
“The Emperor’s,” Zhen answered. “I am his right hand.”
“Perhaps you haven’t notice the horde of dead men waiting outside to eat us alive,” General Tsang said.
“Yes,” Advisor Zhen said. “But must you always answer violence with more violence?”
“It’s never failed me yet,” General Tsang said.
“I shall parlay with the man,” Advisor Zhen said.
“That’s no man,” General Tsang said.
“I will talk him out of this,” Advisor Zhen said. “I was gifted with a silver tongue and I can talk anyone into anything.”
General Tsang closed his eyes and thought upon this proposal for a moment, then looked at the fat man.
“Zhen,” General Tsang said. “I have fought villains all of my life. They do not negotiate. They do not feel remorse. They take attempts to bargain with them as a sign of weakness. As much as I have long dreamed of seeing you being ripped apart, I do not want that to happen today, and certainly not by this foe. I beg of you, do not go down there.”
“I’m going down there,” Zhen said
“Damn it,” General Tsang replied.
The general leaned over the wall. “Abomination!”
“Yes?” Dragonhand said.
“The Emperor’s advisor seeks parlay,” the general shouted. “Do I have your word no harm will come to him during the impending negotiations?”
“You have my word,” Dragonhand said.
In a lower tone of voice, General Tsang muttered, “Yeah, that and a gold piece will buy me a night in a whore house.”
The general and the advisor descended a long flight of stone steps until they reached the gate. General Tsang rested his hand on a lever.
“I am completely against this,” General Tsang said.
“I know,” Advisor Zhen said.
“He will kill you and claim your death as a victory, then proceed to lay siege to the city,” General Tsang said.
“It’s a pleasant surprise that you care so much about my wellbeing, Tsang,” the advisor said.
“Funny,” General Tsang said. “It comes a surprise to me too.
The general yanked the lever until the gate rose just enough for Zhen to squeeze under it.
“I will fix this,” Zhen said.
“Yeah,” General Tsang said as he closed the gate. “It’s been nice knowing you, fatty.”