The Mahabharata Home
"Sanjaya said, 'Having vanquished the son of Drona and achieved a mighty and heroic feat that is exceedingly difficult of accomplishment, Dhananjaya, irresistible by foes, and with bow outstretched in his hands, cast his eyes among his own troops. The brave Savyasaci, gladdening those warriors of his that were still battling at the head of their divisions and applauding those among them that were celebrated for their former achievements, caused the carwarriors of his own army to continue to stand in their posts. Not seeing his brother Yudhishthira of Ajamida's race, the diadem-decked Arjuna, adorned, besides, with a necklace of gold, speedily approached Bhima and enquired of him the whereabouts of the king, saying, "Tell me, where is the king?" Thus asked, Bhima said, "King Yudhishthira the just, hath gone away from this place, his limbs scorched with Karna's shafts. It is doubtful whether he still liveth!" Hearing those words, Arjuna said, "For this reason go thou quickly from the spot for bringing intelligence of the king, that best of all the descendants of Kuru! Without doubt, deeply pierced by Karna with shafts, the king hath gone to the camp! In that fierce passage at arms, though deeply pierced by Drona with keen shafts, the king endued with great activity, had still stayed in battle, expectant of victory, until Drona was slain! That foremost one among the Pandavas, possessed of great magnanimity, was greatly imperilled by Karna in today's battle! For ascertaining his condition, quickly go hence, O Bhima! I will stay here, checking all our foes!" Thus addressed, Bhima said, "O thou of great glory, go thyself for ascertaining the condition of the king, that bull amongst the Bharatas! If, O Arjuna, I go there, many foremost of heroes will then say that I am frightened in battle!" Then Arjuna said unto Bhimasena, "The samsaptakas are before my division! Without slaying those assembled foes first, it is impossible for me to stir from this place!' Then Bhimasena said unto Arjuna, 'Relying upon my own might, O foremost one among the Kurus, I will fight with all the samsaptakas in battle! Therefore, O Dhananjaya, do thou go thyself!'"
"Sanjaya continued, 'Hearing in the midst of foes, those words of his brother Bhimasena that were difficult of accomplishment, Arjuna, desiring to see the king, addressed the Vrishni hero, saying, "Urge the steeds, O Hrishikesha, leaving this sea of troops! I desire, O Keshava to see king Ajatasatru!'"
"Sanjaya continued, 'Just as he was on the point of urging the steeds, Keshava, that foremost one of the Dasharhas, addressed Bhima, saying, "This feat is not at all wonderful for thee, O Bhima! I am about to go (hence). Slay these assembled foes of Partha!" Then Hrishikesha proceeded with very great speed to the spot where king Yudhishthira was, O king, borne by those steeds that resembled Garuda, having stationed Bhima, that chastiser of foes, at the head of the army and having commanded him, O monarch, to fight (with the samsaptakas). Then those two foremost of men, (Krishna and Arjuna), proceeding on their car, approached the king who was lying alone on his bed. Both of them, alighting from that car, worshipped the feet of king Yudhishthira the just. Beholding that bull of tigers among men safe and sound, the two Krishnas became filled with joy, like the twin Ashvinis on seeing Vasava. The king then congratulated them both like Vivasvat congratulating the twin Ashvinis, or like Brihaspati congratulating Sankara and Vishnu after the slaughter of the mighty asura Jambha. King Yudhishthira the just, thinking that Karna had been slain, became filled with joy, and that scorcher of foes thereupon addressed them in these words in a voice choked with delight.'"
Next: Section 66