AFTER defeating Susarma,king ofTrigarta, Virata returned to his capital
amidst the acclamations of the citizens. When he reached his palace, he saw that Uttara
was not there and the womenfolk told him with much elation that Uttara had set out to
conquer the Kauravas.
They had not a doubt that their hand some prince could conquer the
whole world; but the king's heart sank within him at thenews, for he knew the impossible
task which the delicately nurtured prince had taken on himself with no better following
than a eunuch.
"My dearly loved son must be dead by now," he cried,
overwhelmed with anguish. He then bade his ministers collect and send as strong a force as
could be got together for rescuing Uttara if he was still alive and bring him back. Scouts
also were immediately despatched to find outUttara's whereabouts and fate.
Dharmaputra, now disguised as the sanyasin Kanka, tried to comfort
Virata by assuring him that the prince could come to no harm, since Brihannala had gone as
his charioteer. "You do not know about her," said he. "
I do. Whosoever fights from a chariot driven by her, can be sure of
victory. Further, the news of Susarma's defeat must have reached there and the Kauravas
must have retreated."
Meanwhile courtiers arrived from the field of battle with the glad news
that Uttara had defeated the Kaurava forces and recovered the kine.