66.THE THIRD DAY'S BATTLE
He had too much regard for his great grandsire. Krishna thought that, if Arjuna went on like this, the army, which had been so badly demoralized already, would be utterly destroyed and all would be lost. Krishna managed the chariot skilfully, but in spite of it, both he and Arjuna were hit many times by Bhishma's arrows. Janardana's (Krishna) anger rose. "I can stand this no longer, Arjuna. I shall kill Bhishma myself if you will not do it!" he exclaimed, and dropping the reins, he took up his discus and jumped down from the chariot and dashed forward towards Bhishma. Bhishma was far from being perturbed at this. On the contrary, his face expanded with ecstatic joy. "Come, come, Oh Lotuseyed One!" he exclaimed.
"I bow to you, Oh Madhava. Lord of the World, have you indeed come down from the chariot for my sake? I offer you my life. If I be slain by you, I shall be glorified in the three worlds. Give me that boon. May your hands take this life away and save me for eternity." Arjuna was distressed to see this. He jumped down and ran after Krishna. Overtaking him with great difficulty, he entreated Krishna to turn back. "Do not lose your patience with me. Desist and I promise not to flinch," he said, and persuaded Krishna to return. The chariot reins were again in Krishna's hands. Arjuna attacked the Kaurava forces furiously and thousands were slain by him. The Kauravas suffered a severe defeat on the evening of the third day. As they returned to their camps in torchlight, they said to one another: "Who can equal Arjuna? There is nothing strange in his being victorious." So marvelous was Arjuna's prowess that day.