Wednesday, 23 March 2016

337. The battle continues.

          Angada, who was eager to win the battle on that night moved to attack Kampana. Anticipating the intentions of Angada, Kampana hit him abruptly with a mace. As the hit was unexpected and violent, Angada's head started reeling. However, Angada managed to steady himself without falling. He then hurled a mountain peak on Kampana with such a force which killed Kampana. Seeing Kampana killed, Shonitaksha rushed towards Angada  in his chariot and struck Angada with his arrows which were very powerful. Angada, ignoring the wounds caused by those arrows, surprised Shonitaksha by jumping on his chariot crushed his fearsome  bow, chariot and darts.
         Shonitaksha,  jumped down with alacrity from his chariot with his sword and shield. Before he could steady himself on the terra firma, Angada surprised him by jumping on him and snatching away the sword. Before that rakshash could figure out what was going on, Angada cut that rakshash from left to right diagonally by his own sword. That rakshash fell unconscious.
      Holding that large sword in his strong hand, Angada rushed towards the other  enemies in the battle-front. But Shonitaksha, quickly recovering his consciousness, rushed towards Angada with an iron mace.
         The rakshash, Prajangha, along with his pal Yupaksha, rushed towards  Angada with his mace. Seeing that, the vanara commanders Mainda and Dvivida rushed towards Angada with huge trees to protect him.  Seizing hold of the trees, they hurled them towards the rakshashas.  Prajangha cut them down with his sword.
         Shonitaksha chopped off the trees hurled by Dvivida and Mainda with his mace in the midway itself. Prajangha holding a large sword for quick finis, hurried  towards Angada. Seeing him, Angada hit him with a shvakarna tree. He then followed it by a hit by his fist, the arm of Prajangha holding the sword.  The sword fell on the ground. Then Prajangha tightened his dreadfully strong fist and hit Angada with all the strength he could muster on the forehead which made Angada to shudder for a moment.  Angada then returned with interest that hit with his fist blowing Prajangha’s head to smithereens.
           Yupaksha, seeing the death of his paternal uncle in such a horrible manner wept with tears flowing from his eyes for a few moments. He then recovering himself quickly, jumped down from his chariot for revenge. Seeing Yupaksha with his sword, Dvivida struck him on his chest and forcibly caught hold of him. Seeing his brother being seized, Shonitaksha struck Dvivida on his chest. That made Dvivida totter.
       Meanwhile, Mainda came nearer to Dvivida and banged Yupaksha on his chest with his palm. Those two rakshashas, Shonitaksha and Yupaksha, tried their best to vanquish the two vanaras. Unfortunately for them the two vanaras proved to be more powerful than them. Dvivida, after splitting open shonitaksha’s face with his claws, threw him down on the floor and crushed him. Mainda simply pressed Yupaksha with his arms very tightly making that rakshash to fall down dead on the ground due to suffocation.
          Seeing those valiant leaders killed, the army of rakshashas under their command moved out and joined Kumbha, the son of Kumbhakarna. Kumbha then decided to exert himself to bring out his   best to overcome the vanaras or embrace death.
            Kumbha then hit by a powerful arrow struck Dvivida, who with his feet swaying to and fro fell down throbbing. Seeing his dear brother in difficulty, Mainda, taking a large rock, hurried  to his help. That rock hurled by Mainda on Kumbha was broken to pieces by that rakshash with his arrows. He followed it by another arrow which struck the chest of Mainda the brother of Dvivida. That arrow struck Mainda on his vital parts making him to fall unconscious on the ground.
        Seeing both his mighty maternal uncles wounded, Angada went like lightning to the fore of Kumbha, who was standing with his bow uplifted to meet any eventualities. Seeing Angada in front of him like magic, Kumbha pierced Angada with his arrows. He thanked himself for the foresight in keeping himself in  all   readiness.
        Angada proved that he was made of much better stuff. Even though pierced all over the body with sharp arrows, that mighty Angada was not shaken even a little bit. He retaliated with a rain of rocks and trees on Kumbha’s head.
        Kumbha the son of Kumbhakarna chopped off all those trees hurled by Angada and burst them off further. Seeing Angada rushing towards him, Kumbha pierced his brows with his arrows.  Angada’s eyes were blinded by the blood that was oozing out from his brows. The dauntless Angada, covering his eyes, dampened with blood with one hand, caught hold of a Sala tree nearby with his other hand. Holding it with his hand and bending a little, Angada uprooted it from the ground.
       All the rakshashas were dazed to see that act and was just looking at the feat forgetting that they were in the middle of a battle. Angada hurled that tree, which was tall like Indra’s banner and resembled the Mount Mandara in size.  Kumbha chopped off that tree with his arrows. Angada was very much disappointed and fell down, swooning.
        This was relayed immediately to Rama. Rama sent out for help, a strong vanara plus bear force under the captaincy of the vetaran Jambavan.
          The team quickly rushed towards Kumbha with trees and rocks in their hands. Jambavan along withe the mighty vanaras Sushena and Vegadarshi ran towards Kumbha to attack him. Kumbha covered them with a flood of arrows, as one would obstruct the course of a stream by means of  rocks. Kumbha's initial action of defense was so effective that the vanaras were unable even to look at him, much less advance towards him, any more than a great ocean would overstep its shore. Seeing those troop of vanaras in disadvantageous position, Sugreeva, keeping Angada in a safe place in the rear, hurried towards Kumbha like a lion would bounce upon an elephant walking along the slopes of a mountain. On the way he collected many large trees beginning with Ashvakarna and many other kinds of trees by uprooting them. Sugreeva hurled them on Kumbha when that rakshash came into his proximity. Kumbha, the son of Kumbhakarna chopped off that rain of trees, which was obscuring the sky. He then hit Sugreeva with many arrows.
             Seeing that all the trees hurled by him were chopped off by that rakshash, Sugreeva, enduring his hurt caused by the arrows, suddenly jumped before that rakshash and snatched away Kumbha’s bow and broke it. He then told Kumbha, who was looking like an elephant with a broken tusk “O Kumbha, the elder brother of Nikumbha! Both your prowess and the swiftness of your arrows are wonderful. Both Ravana and you seem to be equal in complaisance towards rakshashas.
        “O Kumbha, the compeer of Prahlada, Bali, Indra, Kubera and Varuna! You look like your father Kumbhakarna, who was exceedingly strong.
      “Divinities cannot surpass you with a spike in hand. In spite of all these, I am sure, I can vanquish you without much difficulty. I see you look tired and as such I do not like to fight with you now for the fear of public censure. Have enough rest and test my valour. If you have any fear of death go back with all your army. If you fight with me I will kill you.”
       Kumbha was naturally irritated with those lofty and insulting words of Sugreeva.  Kumbha, without speaking anything went near Sugreeva and   clasped him in his arms and tightened his grip to kill him. He found that Sugreeva was as strong as he boasted. Both the bodies fastened against each other, rubbing one another. The battle-ground sank under the trampling of their feet. With their waves whirled about, the ocean became turbulent. Then lifting up the body of Kumbha, Sugreeva tossed him down into the ocean.
       The impact of the body of Kumbha caused the sea to rise the height of the Mount Vindhya. Jumping out of the sea, Kumbha, threw Sugreeva down and hit him on his chest with his very powerful fist. Sugreeva’s  armour was burst asunder. Blood started oozing out of his chest. Sugreeva rallied with great effort tightened his highly powerful fist. Sugreeva then landed that fist on the breast of Kumbha.
       That was the last straw for Kumbha, who fell down, like fire whose flame had extinguished. When Kumbha was killed by Sugreeva the earth with its mountains and forests trembled. 

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