The Futile Hero
- ScreenwriterMan Wah
With the sweeping victory against Tso Cho at the Red Cliff, Chow Yu marches his troops to attack Nanjun, another stronghold of Tso’s in the province of Jingzhou, during which he is shot by Tso Yan with a poisoned arrow. Chow summons Lou Suk to spread the rumour of his death, and asks him to wail in front of his men, with the hope that Tso Yan would loosen his defence of Nanjun.
Hearing the news, ChuKot Leung of Kingdom Shu sends Chiu Wan to seize Nanjun immediately, amongst other conquests to secure its presence in Jingzhou. Chow only arrives shortly afterwards to fight a bitter battle, which ends up with a reluctant agreement to lease Jingzhou to Kingdom Shu for eight years. Chow then withdraws his troops in frustration and indignation.
Chow is taken care of by his beloved wife as he recovers from injury. Knowing that Chow has devoted himself to Kingdom Wu, founded by his best friend Suen Chak, who dies young of assassination and is succeeded by his younger brother Suen Kuen, Lady Chow volunteers to leave for hometown, so that her husband can focus on his work without worry. Chow pledges his love, and promises to retire with her after taking back Jingzhou.
Convinced that Lau Bei, ruler of Kingdom Shu would not give up Jingzhou, Chow devises a plot to kill him on the pretext of a blind date at Temple of Sweet Dew. Suen Seung Heung, younger sister of Suen Chak and Suen Kuen, turns out to marry Lau anyway and follows him to his stronghold in Jingzhou, as plotted by Chu Kot. Chow tries to intercept them but in vain.
Chow then pleads Seung Heung to return and visit her ill mother, and invites Lau to a banquet at the Yellow Crane Tower. Chu Kot asks Chiu to escort Lau and gives him secret orders. Chow and Luo are pleased about the news as they wait for Lau by Yangtze River.
Chow puts Lau and Chiu under house arrest at the Yellow Crane Tower, in an attempt to coerce them to withdraw from Jingzhou. But Chiu manages to flee with Lau by cheating Chow’s men with an arrow of authority sent by Chow earlier as Kingdoms Wu and Shu pledge to join forces to defeat Tso at Red Cliff.