And here continues my look at the characters who have little significance in the big picture. Yuan Tan (someone unimportant) is the eldest son of Yuan Shao (someone important). He competes with his other two brothers to be the heir of the Yuan Clan after Yuan Shao dies. However Yuan Fang is the illegitimate son of Yuan Shao, so in this case he is competing against three brothers. Except...the first time he tries to show his might he fails miserably. Yeah, I gotta stop doing characters that are in the story only to fail.
After defeating Lu Bu at Xiapi, Cao Cao faces Yuan Shao. And in the initial battles, Yuan Fang performs pretty well against Guo Jia and Xun Yu. In fact, Yuan Fang almost kills Xun Yu and almost does the same to the force that Xun Yu leads. Meanwhile, Yuan Tan leads a tremendous force that would have done some heavy damage to Cao Cao, but he is stopped by two gavediggers.
Does anyone need a refresher? Remember that the batle before this was Xiapi. Do you remember which important characters died? Lu Bu and Xiao Meng. Do you remember which characters had the most important ties to them? Zhang Liao andHuo. Do you know which gravediggers I am talking about now? (hint: it's the two that are still alive)
First, Liaoyuan Huo kills most of Yuan Tan's major generals. Then, when Yuan Tan is fleeing, he runs into Zhang Liao and runs away again. The whole army is in chaos because Yuan Tan friggin refused to go around the grave site. He gets scared, thinks that Lu Bu is still alive and that there are two of them, and gets his ass saved by one of the other general (an important one whose name I can't remember).
After this, Yuan Tan tells Yuan Fang to retreat because Lu Bu is still alive and Yuan Fang agrees to "follow the orders of the superior". Yuan Fang falls out of favor and becomes heir to an uncle and not Yuan Shao. Then he and the younger Yuan brother try to get Cao Cao in an ambush, but Cao Cao decimates them. They run to Wuchao and....well, Yuan Fang is a fucking genius. That's all I have to say.