While our avenging angel gets his first kills done, we are still plodding along in the grand scheme of things. We are still stuck in Chang’An! LORD. We need to move faster, stop with the silly side-plots that doesn’t add to the story! Get behind Chu Qiao’s identity and let us know how she feels!
Episode 31 (written by Kath):
Prince Xiang (Yuan Che’s title) and Yuwen Yue pay respects to the emperor. The emperor praises the men, and Prince Xiang and Yuwen Yue are modest in saying they are only doing their job and following their duties. The emperor decides to reward Yuwen Yue and confers the title of commander to Yuwen Yue to help assist Prince Xiang.
Just then, Yan Xun arrives. The emperor asks Yan Xun if he’s meditated and reflected on his wrong-doings. The emperor goes on to say he’s forgiving Yan Xun because he isn’t like his father and will now free him from imprisonment. He presents Yan Xun with a jade to show his intentions of goodwill.
The emperor then tells them that he is having an audience with Ruo Ran which will take place on a hunting field in the outskirts of the city and wonders who he should entrust his safety to. Prince Xiang says the security should rest with Yuwen Yue. Upon dismissal, Yan Xun tells Prince Xiang he’ll remember the prince’s kindness in supporting his father and Yanbei.
It’s then reported that the mausoleum was on fire and Yuwen Huai was arrested for not doing his duty. Prince Xiang is then summoned away by his father.
Yuwen Yue takes the moment to ask if Yan Xun is doing alright, if Xing Er is doing alright too. But there is evident tension that this friendship is long gone. There is nothing but coldness from Yan Xun towards Yuwen Yue. Yan Xun remarks that all is well as he walks away.
Back in the emperor’s quarters, Prince Xiang is cautious in talking to his father. The emperor states that whoever holds the military power is the one in power, but he trusts Prince Xiang the most. Prince Xiang is weary as his father pats him and tells him so. He tells his son that when he killed Yan Shi Cheng, only Yuwen Yue and Prince Xiang objected, with the prince being most supportive of Yanbei. The prince is cautious when he says he was naïve and couldn’t share the burden with his father. The emperor sounds like he is testing out his son, saying he doesn’t have to work as hard now that Prince Xiang is back. Prince Xiang wisely says that his brothers are more capable, but the emperor insists Prince Xiang is the most capable.
Yuwen Yue and Yan Xun sit down to have a drink, and Yuwen Yue says they’re not completely honest with each other. Yuwen Yue tells Yan Xun he’s been writing to him for two years, and asks if he received his letters. Yan Xun indicates that he reads everything because of being imprisoned with not much to do. Yuwen Yue begins to explain he couldn’t do anything back then, and tries to explain more of his attempt to save Yan Xun, but is cut off by Yan Xun who says the tides have changed. Yan Xun says there is nothing Yuwen Yue could say that he doesn’t already know. He wonders why Yuwen Yue won’t just stand his ground about betraying him like Yuwen Huai and Zhao Xifeng, because at least that was better than seeing Yuwen Yue’s fakeness. He tells Yuwen Yue that with such honors, Yuwen Yue shouldn’t associate with traitors like him.[This is the thing that gets me boiling, what’s the point of explaining now when Yan Xun asked you the questions three years ago? Yan Xun defended you against Zhao Xi Feng moments before that too! Yuwen Yue likes to explain things in the most unfitting time, same as the case with Chu Qiao and her brother. – Kap]
Finally Yuwen Yue asks Yan Xun if Xing Er didn’t die, and if she’s with Yan Xun. Yan Xun asks Yuwen Yue if he wants to kill her a second time?
Back at Yan Xun’s manor, he’s treating Chu Qiao’s wound and wonders if she’s afraid being back here, she might be caught by Yuwen Yue. She responds that she’s already met him at the mausoleum. She says if she recognizes him, she’s sure he recognizes her, so there is nothing to hide. Then Chu Qiao asks Yan Xun if Yuwen Yue mentioned anything about her or the incident. Yan Xun responds that Yuwen Yue acted as if nothing happened and didn’t say anything. He warns her to be careful around Yuwen Yue, since he’s cruel and can’t be read. Then Yan Xun informs her that the emperor has released him from imprisonment. He then tells her someone like her needs to be more concerned with her looks as he continues tending to her wound on her neck, otherwise no one will marry her. She tells Yan Xun she doesn’t want to get married, but he tells her she doesn’t need to worry.[This is an indirect proposal. HA. – Kap]
Yuwen Yue is cleaning his sword when Prince Xiang appears, outright declaring to the public that they are now partners. Prince Xiang gives Yuwen Yue the decree that Yuwen Huai will be punished for the fire at the mausoleum. Prince Xiang tells Yuwen Yue that third prince is returning, and Yuwen Yue acknowledges that the third prince is only summoned back by the emperor to have a checks and balance of powers between the two princes. Yuwen Yue says there truly isn’t peace in the city despite its name. Prince Xiang is certain now that he isn’t easily manipulated or tricked with Yuwen Yue by his side. Prince Xiang then asks Yuwen Yue if there is any information gathered regarding the fire in the mausoleum, and Yuwen Yue says he doesn’t have any leads.
Dong Fang Ji and Prince Xiang talk about how much Yan Xun has changed. Dong Fang Ji responds that that even though Yan Shi Cheng was his old master, he remembers his place now, and supports the prince if he wants to get rid of Yan Xun. Prince Xiang comments that this is cruel. Then Prince Xiang says that he doesn’t plan to let Yan Xun return to Yanbei, and plans to eliminate this threat. (WHAT! WAIT WHAT! Prince, I was just liking you. I get that you’re put in a rock and hard place with a psycho dad, but whattttt. I thought you were a good guy! I am so disappointed. It’s no wonder that Yan Xun has no place to turn and no one he can even trust) Dong Fang Ji then says he doesn’t think Yuwen Yue shares the same ideals, and the prince responds that he hopes Yuwen Yue won’t let him down.
Yuan Song asks Yan Xun if he can borrow Chu Qiao. Yuan Song states that she’s not a maid, and people remember her. He then tells her in three months, he can be free (move into his own Prince manor out of the palace) and can marry. Chu Qiao congratulates him, and the Yuan Song asks her for a present—that she can give herself to him. He then amends that she can come live with him in his new house. Basically he’d doing a horrible job proposing to her. She runs off and escapes his words.
Chu Qiao comes across an injured bunny and treats the bunny’s wound by bandaging it. An arrow shoots at her and she dodges it. When the two newcomers, who look like people from Yanbei, the girl is named Zha Ma and she asks whose house servant Chu Qiao’s from. When Chu Qiao replies she isn’t from any, the two throw money at her and declare her as a servant on the run for her life while they aim to shoot. Chu Qiao takes the money and runs while the two begin shooting. (AHHH the way the actress grabs the bunny breaks my heart. How cruel! I think it’s a real bunny right?)
The two continue shooting arrows at Chu Qiao until she stops and turns around. Zha Ma boasts that she can shoot down a flying eagle too when Chu Qiao asks if she can shoot a running horse. Zha ma orders her companion to give Chu Qiao the horse to ride. Chu Qiao makes a show of struggling to get onto the horse. And then finally, stabs the horse to make it run.
Yuan Song sends a present to Chu Qiao in a box, and Yan Xun accepts it on her behalf as she’s not present. He opens the box to find a dress bestowed to Chu Qiao. When no one is looking, he splashes his tea onto the dress before closing up the box again. Yan Xun then tells his servant to bring in his present, intially meant for the princess, but now he can’t be outdone. (Awww, the little smirk and jellyyyyyyyy Yan Xun!) It’s revealed that the dress is made from the finest materials. Chu Qiao comes in and spots the box on his desk. She asks what it is, and Yan Xun says it’s a present for her.
She asks him why he’s giving her a present, and he said he received it as a gift, and felt it would fit her. She opens the box and sees the content, saying she hasn’t worn feminine clothes in a while. Then Yan Xun tells her that Yuan Song sent her a gift too. Chu Qiao opens the box, feels the material and notices it is wet. She smiles, and is returned with a small smile from Yan Xun. She says the dress Yan Xun gave her is prettier, and he’s pleased.[I remember giggling my head off reading this scene in the novel, Yan Xun’s first bout of jealousy! It’s double the cuteness because we finally get some awareness from Chu Qiao! She sees right through his jealousy act and finds it adorable. – Kap]
Zha Ma appears at camp, and Yan Xun addresses her as a princess, even when she taunts him about being able to live under an enemy’s roof when his family was butchered. Zha Ma says she wants to punish Chu Qiao, and Yan Xun says Chu Qiao isn’t a servant, and he’d never give Chu Qiao to anyone. Zha Ma taunts him and says she’ll take Chu Qiao and torture her. So it turns out, the whole time, Zha ma thought Chu Qiao was a male, and mocks Yan Xun for being gay, until her whip undoes Chu Qiao’s hair. That’s when Zha Ma realizes Chu Qiao is a woman. (Really drama? That was your point. That was really stupid of you to throw that in there, when you made no mentions of what you wanted to do…Drama logic really. So you gave our girl an ugly hairstyle to try to pass her off as a guy this whole time? I don’t think you fooled anyone but Zha Ma. UGH!!! And how does the hair coming down say anything about someone being female or male? Truly. If Yan Xun’s hair was all undone…are you saying…okay I’ll leave it at that.)
Yuwen Yue reports to Prince Xiang’s summon. Prince Xiang states that Zha ma is domineering. (I am sooo confused with this part.) And wonders who is possibly causing trouble with Zha Ma. Yuwen Yue mentions that it’s possibly a maid. Then Prince Xiang notices that Yuwen Yue’s sword is different.
Yan Xun tells Chu Qiao to come with him, because he feels Zha ma would cause trouble. Chu Qiao dresses him and he tells her to wear the dress he gave her. Yan Xun says that the jade bestowed by the emperor will at least make others think twice before they act irrationally.
Wei Shu You is aware that the maid by Yan Xun’s side isn’t dead. (News travel fast. And they don’t even have social media…okay bad joke.) They are all aware it’s Xing Er and plan to kill her, and not leave any traces. Wei Shu Ye tells them to not be reckless, especially now that the emperor has given Yan Xun the jade pendant. Wei Shu You and Zhao Xi Feng ignore his warnings, and Shu You mentions the concubine the emperor likes the most now is from the Zhao family. Wei Shu You tells Wei Shu Ye that he is too kind to achieve anything great.
Episode 32 RECAP (written by Kappy):
Royal Hunting Ground At Night time. Yuan Song spots Chu Qiao standing beside Yan Xun and pops up behind her. She annoyingly asks what he wants and he takes issue with her not wearing the dress he gave her, to which she says the current one she’s wearing is prettier, and he naturally disagrees. When he asks Yan Xun for his opinion, Yan Xun of course says the dress fits her nicely, and Chu Qiao chuckles since they both know it’s an inside joke that Yan Xun spilled tea on Yuan Song’s dress. Lol.
Yuan Song tells her to change out of it before he leaves. Yea, that’s happening. XD
Yan Xun asks Chu Qiao to wait for him as he makes his greetings rounds to all the nobles around. And once Love Target #1 and Love Target #2 are out of sight, Love target #3 approaches the beauty instantly, it’s Yuwen Yue and he dreamily acknowledges that she’s come too, wondering if she remembers him. She gives the political correct answer; everybody knows about Master Yue in Chang’An and he sighs, looking at the cheery crowd gathered around tonight, and notes how everyone has hidden desire in their heart and asks what she thinks. It’s too deep of a topic and Chu Qiao feigns denseness.
Elsewhere, Yan Xun bumps into Wei Shu You and Zhao Xi Feng, both are not willing to let him off so easily, wanting to toast with him. Refusing to drink with them, Yan Xun states his tolerance is low and Wei Shu You gets more aggressive, wondering why Yue’s maid is now with Yan Xun. He tells the bully to watch his mouth but Shu You digs his grave by mentioning Yan Xun’s fallen family and gloats that he isn’t afraid of Yan Xun any longer.
Yan Xun’s voice hardens and he drops the reminder that Wei Shu You has just gotten out of house arrest too, right? Being locked up for so long and yet Shu You hasn’t matured one bit, and Yan Xun adds that maybe Wei Shu Ye is the favored child after all, and that ruffles Shu You’s feathers in the right spot and before things get out of hand, Shu Ye steps in and tells his cousin to shut up.
Watching the interaction on the side, Yuwen Yue tells Chu Qiao to remind Yan Xun to act accordingly in Chang’An. If he goes out of line, Yue won’t let him go easily. Really, Yue? Did you really just said that about your friend? So it’s okay for the bullies and Yuwen Huai to act out of line all the freaking time and get away with it? What did you do when they were hunting slaves in episode 1? Oh right, you only saved the one person who had potentials.
Chu Qiao assures Yue that she and Yan Xun harbor no ill intentions, they have lived like this for many years and they have forgotten things of the past. Uh huh!
Yue hopes it is true and walks away.
For her boring beautiful horse-jumping performance, the King wants to reward Princess Zha Ma (Actress Kang Ning) but she denies awards and only wants to compete with Yan Xun’s maid, Chu Qiao. Yan Xun tries his best to buffer her pride but she’s a dog with a bone. With her whole family harping on the same idea as her, Yan Xun mutters to Chu Qiao to be careful. But nasty Zhao Xi Feng suggests another devious plan, since the princess has exhausted herself from the performance, she should get a break before fighting with Chu Qiao. In the meantime, Chu Qiao should prove herself by beating Princess Zha Ma’s guard. Yuan Song sees the unfairness but his voice is rained on by the bullies, insisting that the Princess is lowering herself to fight with a maid. A maid only.
Then we see a huge, burly man with moving mountains as breasts standing before a teeny, tiny Chu Qiao. He charges at her head on and Chu Qiao bends back, feet forward to stop his speed and then kicks up swiftly in the neck, knocking him out cold.
I guess the Princess’s rest time is about 4 seconds top? Lol.
Princess Zha Ma suggests they compete in archery next, each person has 3 arrows and the first person to hit their rival is the winner, but Yuan Song follows their previous logic and thinks the princess’s precious body shouldn’t be put in danger so they should hit targets instead. But the princess is arrogant and haughty as she explains how good she is at archery. Zhao Xi Feng pipes up another vicious idea – removing Chu Qiao’s arrowheads so her arrows can’t harm the princess. Chu Qiao agrees just to get it over with.
The battle is over within like 5 seconds also. The princess misses Chu Qiao, allowing our girl to grab her arrow and shoots it at her, cutting her bow string and effectively ending the game.
The King rewards both ladies handsomely but Zhao Xi Feng brings up the fact that Chu Qiao is a maid at Qing Shan Manor. Without being freed by her previous owner, she escaped and works for someone else. According to the Wei rules, she’s punishable by death. Yuan Song hurries pleads with the King and Yuwen Yue also steps out to clarify that she’s a free person. He has written up the form but forget to submit it since he hurried to the borders three years ago. All matters are settled then, as Chu Qiao is ordered to retrieve the approval letter from Qing Shan manor soon.
Sometime later, Xi Feng and Shu You laugh maniacally in their tent, excited about the prospect of ending Yan Bei’s family line. If I have to drink each time you two knuckleheads fail at killing Yan Xun, I wouldn’t be able to go to work tomorrow!
Zhao Xi Feng remembers Chu Qiao and says that if she also escapes death tomorrow, he will change his surname! HAHAHA Of course you will. You will die and reincarnate to a modern setting, wearing suits and a new name.
Yan Xun waits for Chu Qiao’s return, apparently they have set up their own plan of attack. Chu Qiao laments that they couldn’t get Yuwen Huai too, lol. Oh Yea, revenge plan is on!!
And the hunting begins the next day. Preys and predators get in position! Xi Feng and Shu You aim for Yan Xun and follow him. Zhong Yu chops down a tree to separate the two evils, forcing Shu You to take another route while her conspirators deal with Xi Feng first. His men are shot down by Chu Qiao using Shu You’s signature arrows and then when Xi Feng tries to attack a knowing Yan Xun from behind, but Chu Qiao shoots him, one of the arrow piercing his body and into a tree.
Injured and lying on the floor, Xi Feng has the nerve to threaten Yan Xun, promising to return the favor twice fold. Yea….. that is if you make it out alive, kiddo. As he backs away on the ground, Yan Xun keeps inching menacingly towards him, while the horse munches on grass on the side.
Backed up against the tree, Xi Feng speeds up his death by mentioning Yan Xun’s pregnant dead sister, how alike the Yan siblings are…. How pitiful she looks…one body but two deaths… Yan Xun’s jawline tightens and he steps on the arrow stuck in Xi Feng’s chest, triggering painful screams from Xi Feng. But the poor lad doesn’t think Yan Xun dare to kill him and brings up his dead family again….and Yan Xun mutters bitterly at that, “It’s time you go seek their forgiveness.” He stabs Xi Feng to death and sends Chu Qiao on her way, telling her to be careful.
Yan Xun drops a white-yellowish pendant by the body and returns to the hunting ground shelter with a cute bunny in his embrace. LOL. You are too funny, evil Yan Xun.
A searching party is sent out to look for Zhao Xi Feng and they find his body torn by wild animals outside the perimeter of the hunting ground, which renders Yue not responsible for that misstep. The clue that catches the King’s eye is the jade pendant found next to the mangled corpse, as the King bestowed it to Yan Xun long ago. Shu You takes this opportunity to pour the crime over’s Yan Xun’s head but Yan Xun freely admits that he lost the pendant yesterday and points to Shu You as the mastermind who stole the pendant to pin the blame on him. Oh, risky plan there Yan Xun but he has witnesses (Yuan Song volunteers) who saw Shu You made a scene last night, a perfect chance to steal the pendant.
When asked for his opinion, Yue thinks Yan Xun is the most suspicious person but adds that Xi Feng’s three guards are also missing, suggesting to find them before making a decision. The King wants to appoint the case to Yue but he declines the offer, citing those involved as far-reaching, afraid he’s not qualified. Yuan Song isn’t an investigator so the King chooses Prince Che and his first order is to find the three guards while locking up Yan Xun.
Adorable Yue Qi worries to Yue that if Yan Xun is the real murderer then Xing Er will be implicated (oh, you puppy! She’s the involved, not the implicated, hahaha.) Yuwen Yue knows what’s up and tells him there’s nothing to worry about, they will quietly observe.
The bodies are found and Yue becomes the investigator instead. HA. He notices the arrows killing all four people belong to the Wei household. When news hits Wei Shu You, he freaks out about the arrows, knowing it’s rare to make but not impossible to make. Prince Yuan Che searches through his belongings, digging through the locked chest to find… a map of Yan Bei military. Oh krap, they went far for you, darling vampire.
At court, Wei Shu You denies the accusations but Yan Xun puts the picture together perfectly for everyone, Wei Shu You has desired Yan Bei for many years and his numerous assassination attempts are not a secret. Well-played, Yan Xun, well-played. He uses the King’s paranoia about not being able to control Yan Bei to play up his anger against Wei Shu You for desiring something that is HIS.
Wei Daddy kneels and asks the king to not be misled by others and sees Wei’s contributions and loyalty to him. The King believes the dad…but evidence speaks volume and he tells Shu You to accept his crimes as to not implicate more Wei’s family members. At that, Wei Daddy grabs the arrow nearby and stabs his own son! He whispers to Shu You to go peacefully, “I will revenge for you!” Holy Krap.
The King tells Yan Xun to go since his name is cleared, signaling a quiet moment as Yan Xun walks out of court in a dark manner, his cape billowing around him, like an avenging angel.
A smile slowly creeps up his face. YES.
Episode 33 RECAP (written by Kappy):
The King chats with his trusted Eunuch, while it is a headache to deal with the constant power battles, he rather they keep each other occupied than having one family dominates. Wei Daddy sips tea to calm down, only he vomits blood into the cup, too upset and heartbroken over his son’s death. His attendant suggests hiring some jianghu killers to kill Yan Xun and Wei Daddy thinks they need to l low for a little bit. He looks at Shu Ye and says that the Wei’s future is now in his hands. Oh no! Don’t turn him evil!
Zhong Yu watches the sunset with a new character, this is the person Chu Qiao is supposed to find in Yan Bei to learn more about herself. He’s Mr. Wu (Hu Bing) and Zhong Yu shares how some burdens are lifted from Yan Xun with two enemies biting the dust. But Mr. Wu tells her to look at the bigger picture, not the small victories. He thinks Yan Xun is still too young and lacks experience in dealing with the enemy.
One has to kill all and eliminate the roots of all evil. He tells them to stay alert for Wei’s attacks and gives her Feng Mian’s secret letter to Yan Xun. Their only goal is to rescue Yan Xun out of Chang’An, despite the sacrifices. At that, his eyes soften and he gazes at Zhong Yu with a mixture of love and regret, placing a hand over hers. She knows what he means. “It’s worth it.”
Yan Xun reads Feng Mian’s letter with Chu Qiao and in it Feng Mian reveals that Wei Daddy has bribed the merchants around Yan Bei with the intention of stopping supply and resources. Chu Qiao describes keenly that the Wei Household is a thorn to Yan Bei and needs to be eliminated completely. Ha. You know, Yan Xun didn’t learn to be evil by himself, Chu Qiao has a lot to do with it.
An eunuch announces the King’s decree to see Chu Qiao. Yan Xun doesn’t know if it’s blessing or a curse to be called in but Chu Qiao assures him it’s okay.
At the gate, the guards take away her sword and it’s brought to Yuwen Huai. Oh Hello there, grave watcher. You’re back too? You wanna go visit your friends too? Lol. Just as the guard leaves Chu Qiao to go announce her presence, her sword is thrown back at her and Yuwen Huai declares her as guilty of bringing in weapons into the palace and calls his guards to attack. Why is this so funny to me?
She handles the soldiers with ease and before Huai can launch himself into battle, Yue calls a stop to the fight and explains that he called “Xing Er” here to return his sword (recall that they switched swords accidentally during the ninja night), hindering Huai from further pursuit by warning him to watch his tail before another demotion comes his way.
They relocate to another wing and Yue asks for his sword back, at which she also asks for hers back. He describes her as all grown up, her voice and her attitude a match. He wonders whether she has found a new place to lean? “Is it Yan Xun?” She pulls out his sword to attack him and they fight, trading back their swords in the process and posing at the end for emphasis.
Yue also has to throw the silly fact at her, “Did you forget who taught you all those kung fu?”
Yes….. all those Kung fu…… did they forget she’s a master of martial arts way before he got his paws into her?! When are they gonna tap into her story?! – Kap
Yuwen Yue scoffs at their little trick to kill two birds with one stone and Chu Qiao snickers back, a little trick was all they needed to fool the King. Yue brings up the slavery free form and Chu Qiao wants to know what he wants from her. I really dislike this slave talk because do we really have time for this plot to still be in the way, writer?
What he wants…. For her to spend one more day as his maid. She quips, “Aren’t you afraid I might stab you nine or ten times during the one day?” He tells her to go ahead if she has the guts and talents. Without a word, she walks back to the palace, only to be told the King is busy with court matters.
Back at Ying Ge manor, Yan Xun quietly makes tea, and Chu Qiao is curious why he isn’t asking her about her trip. He smiles, “Why should I ask? You’re gonna tell me anyway.” HA. It upsets her that he can predict her behavior and she plays hard to get, not telling him if he doesn’t ask.
He understands and plays along, calling her Miss A Chu, then my A Chu Da Ren (title for one’s superior), “What task did the King bestow to you? A General? A marshal?” She stares daggers at his attitude. They are so cute. He knows the King will try to eliminate his people and he’s not worried at all since they have prepared for a long time for this moment.
Casual talk is over and Chu Qiao demands to be fed with the roasted duck! HAHAHHA. Busted by her good sense of smell, Yan Xun hands the goods over. She picks up a drumstick and wants to give it to him (aww). He declines and watches her eat instead. She tells him the truth about taking a day off tomorrow to be Yue’s maid for one last day in order to get that freedom letter. Since they promise to tell the truth to each other, she doesn’t want to hide it from him. (Communication is key to any relationship….)
Next day, Yue Qi leads Chu Qiao back into Qing Shan manor and she takes a look at her old room, recalling all the dance lessons taught by Cold prince. When she enters his room, Yue glares, jabbing at her poor attitude for forgetting all of his rules during the time she spent with Yan Xun. He waves at the tea set and she sets out to make him some tea, making a point to slam the teacup onto the table. Lol. He doesn’t say anything but sips the tea, and compliments her improved skills. She hasn’t said a word so he wonders if she’s mute now. She doesn’t have anything good or nice to say, so he tells her to pick the best things to say. “With you, I don’t have anything good to say.”
Peeved at his insistence to chat, she crosses her arm, and Yuwen Yue scowls at her attitude. “Is that the attitude a servant should have?”
Oh Yue, what is wrong with you today! You’re not cute at all. Stop calling her maid this maid that! Go back to being your cute self, please!
Chu Qiao launches into her tirade about the categories of maids. 1) Butt-kissing maids 2) Peace-desiring maids, and 3) Revenge-driven maids. As she says these words, she has placed her bum on his table, sitting very close to him and looking down at him with challenge.
Yue: “So what type are you?”
“I’m a little bit more dangerous…the type to kill you immediately!” She pulls out a dagger and aims at his throat. He’s all smiling, wondering why she didn’t poison the tea to make her life easier. She scoffs at the proposal, it’s an insult to her real identity, as she’s no longer the weak Xing Er who would use the same petty trick. Then she wonders why he even suggested the idea, has he gotten stupider in three years? LOL.
Yue wants to hear something from her so he drops the fishline. “So why did you return to Qing Shan manor? Aren’t you afraid I might kill you again? Or are you choosing to believe me?”
He knows why she’s here, so don’t ask. If not for the letter, she would not step foot into this manor.
When he calls her Xing Er, she decisively tells him she’s NOT Xing Er, she’s Chu Qiao. To him, she’s Xing Er, and the parrot calls her the same way, pestering her so she flicks a bead at it. The parrot barks that it hurts, which reminds them of the night when Yue cut her finger to put up a show. HA.
He pulls her outside to test her fighting skills. But the parrot doesn’t want them to fight so when Yue steps back, Chu Qiao twists and falls back…..leading us into another random I-catch-your-fall moment as Chu Qiao’s sword slices Yue’s hand by accident. They stay like that for a moment and recalls more memories together.
I’m so ashamed of this director. The only way for him to show romance is to make our heroine look like a ditzy, falling over and over so Yue comes to her rescue. How many times now?
Anyway, Yue waits for his dinner to be served and asks Chu Qiao to join him, and she declines, stating that there wasn’t such a rule. Since he made the rules, he can change them. Once she sits down, she remarks how he never used to touch poor dishes like these, and he reveals his experience during war, having to eat decayed horse meat for three days. “You won’t be picky after that.”
When he moves to grab a piece of meat, she stops him. While he’s not picky over food, he doesn’t like people fighting for his meat. He gets grumpy, lol, saying he got to the meat first!
Chu Qiao: “I didn’t see it.” XD
They fight with their chopsticks and the meat lands on the ground. Yuwen Yue gives up and aims for the veggies. LOL. That is mean, Chu Qiao!
Night time. Yuwen Yue holds a black vial in his hand and tells Chu Qiao it’s a lethal poison, the same poison that almost killed his grandfather and killed her brother. He only had one antidote pill then. When Wu Ge heard it was going to be a long, painful death, he begged Yue to kill him.
In the present, Chu Qiao asks how much is a person’s life to him? Yue sighs, telling her to stop living for others and be kind to herself. She balks at their differences in ideals, rendering this conversation meaningless. She asks for her freedom letter and he lets her leave with a heavy heart. Aww, now you’re back to your normal self when she’s gone!
Outside, Yue Qi drops the bomb that Yue faked her death with the needle and rushed back to save her, but her body was not there. Chu Qiao is shaken at the truth but walks out without saying a word.
At home, Yan Xun is out taking a breath of fresh air just as she arrives. You were pacing the whole manor, Yan Xun. Lol. Chu Qiao lights up to see him and shows him the freedom letter. He asks if Yue made things difficult for her but Chu Qiao proudly states she’s no longer the type to be bullied. As they walk, Yan Xun tells her to drink ginger water before she sleeps since she was out in the rain all day, then apologizes for his powerless state, allowing her to be put in lowly situations. He promises to bring her away from all of this soon and she tells him not to be so apologetic, they have been through so much together and have more important matters to think about.
Chu Qiao lies in bed awake, now understanding Yue’s intention was to save her back then. He was just too late.
Next morning, over tea, Yan Xun and Chu Qiao discuss their steps. The stolen goods from the imperial Mausoleum have been brought into the palace and the King will raise his ire at the three noble families for failing to guard precious items in the royal tomb. Moreover, they have failed to maintain the upkeep, allowing the place to rot overtime (discovered after Chu Qiao and Zhong Yu set the place on fire). Wei Daddy promises to investigate and but is told to stay put in the palace if he’s truly innocent of these crimes.
King calls in Yuwen Yue and appoints him in charge of the fire case, giving him the power to interrogate anyone in Chang’An but he has to find the culprit and the missing item called Bai Yue Ding within ten days. Then the King gets up and gets closer to Yue, wondering if he has spoken to Yan Xun after his return, Yue says he has and observes Yan Xun is different now, his temperament more mild than before, and yet the King proves he’s not stupid, noting that a mild temperament is only a farce, “There are things that can’t be dissolved no matter how much time has passed.”
He helps Yue to a standing position and with a wary glance, says with Yue’s prospects, he can go much further than his grandfather. I’m not sure he wants to go far for you….
Yuan Song visits his little sister Yuan Chun and listens to her dreams about Yan Xun being assassinated on a nightly basis. You’re not wrong, dear. She wants to find a solution that will help Yan Xun in the long run, disappointed of her powerless state even as the princess of great Wei.
Her eyes sparkle because she has found a solution last night. When he’s pressed to guess, Yuan Song gives up and Yuan Chun leans closer, revealing her plan to make Yan Xun her husband, “Wouldn’t that guarantee he won’t be bullied by others anymore?”
Her brother smiles teasingly, declaring that that plan did not come to her overnight, as he knows she planned it for half of her lifetime. LOL. Funny aside, I can’t believe she thinks Yan Xun would marry her! I’m appalled of her common sense and thought process.
Yuan Song says it as it is, getting Yan Xun to marry Yuan Chun is almost an impossibility. She tells him to shut it if he doesn’t offer another solution and to support her, but Yuan Song warns her not to say these things to their father or he might think Yan Xun seduced the princess and would make life harder for Yan Xun.
She stomps off to visit her mom bearing a new skin care product in hand to present as gift. Consort Wei then talks about her marriage, since the Prince of Da Liang will be visiting soon, the King wants to make an alliance. Yuan Chun doesn’t want to go that far and her mom worries because Da Liang Prince lives a scandalous and loose life. He doesn’t have a main wife yet but his manor is full of ladies day in day out. You guys talking bad about my Foxy Prince. I love it!! HAHAHA.
Yuan Chun doesn’t care about power or wealth, she only wants to marry a simple man and lives happily and in love until they grow old. Oh, sweetie. I want to protect you too but the writer has other ideas.
As if the writer remembers that Yue has a grandfather, we are privy to their conversation in the batcave as he gives Yue a badge called Die Zhi Ling to identify a spy he placed in Wei’s household a long time ago, to help with the investigation.
Outside, Yue hands the badge over to Yue Qi and tells him to be careful.
At the Wei’s household, they are calculating the damages done to the tomb. Wei Daddy thinks Yan Xun set them up and assigns someone to investigate, they only need a few evidence to force Yan Xun into a corner.
Episode 34 Recap (written by Kappy):
To stay out of the King’s watchful eyes, Wei Daddy wants to plan his offense in Yan Bei and Xian Yang, and just as they are speaking, an older male servant hobbles in and starts wiping the water Wei Daddy spilled early. Lol. Is he the mole planted by Yue’s grandfather?
The clerk says they need more money if they want to buy out the merchants in Xian Yang and suggests using Yan Bei tax money. Nope, Wei Daddy can’t risk having his greedy behind exposed if things go awry. He sends everyone out but Shu Ye, then tells him to shoo out the deaf male servant too since he can’t reveal secrets to a living person. Once he’s out, we see the clerk listening furtively outside the window. Are you the mole? Who’s the mole!?!
Believing they are alone, Wei Daddy reveals a secret to Shu Ye, but we only hear of scattered information; looks like the item (Bai Yue Ding) the King wanted was buried in the coffin with Shu Ye’s grandfather. The only other person who knows about this is the son, Liu Shen, and as long as he’s dead, no one would be able to incriminate them.
The two moles outside take notes and walk away.
The clerk turns out to be Yue’s mole and the deaf servant belongs to Yan Xun’s group. HA. With targets on Luu Shen’s back, both groups need to find him and bring him to their side. With the Liu’s family as a big name in Southwest regions, they need to find him before he escapes back home and Chu Qiao volunteers for the job. Uh oh, Yue and his people head out, while Shu Ye also heads out on his kill mission. My poor Shu Ye….being used by wicked Wei Old Man!!
Shu Ye’s men reach Liu Shen first but Chu Qiao arrives and fights them off for a short moment before they are cornered because….she didn’t bring a weapon. Okay, what the hell is going on here? She would sleep holding that damn sword and on a rescue mission with assassins on their heels, she would come without a weapon? Writer, you’re making sense?!
And then it makes sense because they want another random OTP moment for Yue to come save the day, complete with a heroic pose. And now you know why I’m upset when these two are together onscreen. They make our heroine look quite brainless when she’s smart and capable.
*rages at the writer*
Shu Ye finds Liu Shen running alone and tries to kill him but Yue gives a strong kick, sending Shu Ye flying. They lock eyes and Yue is shocked to see Shu Ye doing dirty work for his uncle. Chu Qiao tries to grab a hold of Liu Shen but Yue yanks her back and wants to bandage the cut on her wound, not releasing her skinny wrist for a second. She pokes at how thick-skinned he’s become and Yue confesses that he’s always been like this, only she doesn’t notice.
A frantic Liu Shen keeps jabbering on their side so Yue knocks him out. LOL.
Yue says that he needs to bring Liu Shen back and it’s reasonable for him to do so. He knows all about Chu Qiao and Yan Xun’s plans about causing an uproar in and around the royal tomb. When asked why he didn’t expose them, Yue replies, “Because of you.”
She totally lets the confession slide over her head and thinks he’s also after the Wei’s household. If that’s what makes her happy, he can talk to her a little bit more. Oh, lover boy.
In the palace, Consort Wei kneels outside the King’s chamber. Oh, that’s right. She’s also a Wei, his sister. The new consort Liu Lan smirks at her predicament. Head eunuch advises Consort Wei to return to her chamber, knowing that the King still has feelings for her yet is forced to carry out the execution to those involved. She wants head eunuch to give a hairpin to the King, it was the first birthday present he gave her.
Yuwen Yue returns to the Wei manor with Shu Ye. Wei Daddy has accepted his fate and decides to hug all the crimes to himself, hoping to keep Shu Ye, Wei’s last blood, alive. Yue agrees with him and turns to Shu Ye, telling him to confess his uncle’s crimes to the King.
All the crimes presented to the King, Wei Daddy is executed. Yue visits Consort Wei, who is now dressed in black, meaning to ask for forgiveness. She understands he was only acting under royal order and her brother was to blame, and thanks him for saving Shu Ye from death. She asks him to look after the three simpletons – Shu Ye, Yuan Song, and Yuan Chun.
Yuan Chun visits a crest-fallen Shu Ye and tells him to smarten up. Arrangements have been made so that his uncle won’t die a long, painful death.
At Ying Ge manor, Yan Xun takes notice of the time and Chu Qiao says Wei Old Man should be dead by now. He wants to drink wine to toast but when she moves to go get it, he smiles and refuses. They smile at each other. And guess what? In Chu Qiao’s hands is the damn sword, which is not needed at all in this scene but is still in it. Sigh.
The King wants to follow Hua Mu Lan’s example and decrees Chu Qiao as the new archery instructor in the army currently running under Prince Yuan Che and Yuwen Yue. Yan Xun is worried putting her in an environment full of men but she jokes that she almost forgot she’s a lady. She assures him she will be fine and he emphasizes to her to get him if anything happens. If he can’t protect her now, then the suffering he went through the last three years is meaningless. Aw.
Dressed in her new army uniform, Chu Qiao arrives at camp and when the guard reports to Prince Yuan Che about the new instructor, he dismisses the trivial news, until the guard says the King personally appointed a lady as the new instructor. Interest piqued, he meets Chu Qiao and admires her talents displayed at the Royal Hunting Ground.
He mentions the period where she stuck by Yan Xun’s side throughout the massacre and Chu Qiao admits it was the bonding of people without family, and she’s glad the Prince (Yan Xun) didn’t find her humble background censuring.
Prince Yuan Che takes notice of her sword and then sends her away to train the first batch of soldiers. He then calls Yue over. On her way there, Chu Qiao stumbles upon a new character and this is Second-in-command of the Yan Bei’s beauty troop and Chu Qiao’s trusted comrade in battles in the future. His name is He Xiao (Actor Ruan Sheng Wen/nickname Wei Jing). YAY! He’s like an older brother to Chu Qiao.
Another tidbit for those who missed out on the news last year: Li Ying also personally recruited him after working with him in The Journey of Flower (Hua Qian Gu). And gave him his stage/nick name.
Anyway, upon seeing the comrades beg for He Xiao’s life, Chu Qiao stops his execution, offending Leader Xue by stating that He Xiao isn’t a simple commander he could execute without orders from the superiors.
Prince Yuan Che asks Yue why he’s working so hard these days to arrange their people around, hinting at his interference with Chu Qiao’s working schedule. Prince Yuan Che gets up and gets closer to Yue. With an arm on his friend, he whispers, “Do you really like her?”
Yue walks away, not used to people privy to his secret feelings. Lol! Yue ah, the whole drama and dramaland know your feelings for a certain girl….
Prince Yuan Che talks to his man about Yue’s fitting arrangement. Only Yan Bei’s Beauty troops will likely be controlled by her for they are still loyal to Yan Xun.
Two soldiers stitch up He Xiao’s wounds and boasts of Chu Qiao’s credentials as the first female general in Chang’An. They wonder if she would explain to Yan Xun about their predicament. Aww. I love this troop already.
Chu Qiao enters and immediately turns around when she sees He Xiao’s half nekkid on the bed and the boys scramble to a standing position. She gives him some medication and he asks how she recognized him and she professes it’s not hard to distinguish Yan Bei people and knows all of their names by heart.
That night, Chu Qiao seeks out He Xiao, both unable to sleep. She sees the flute (I’m gonna call it a flute for now, Lol) he’s holding and divulges another person who also likes to play the flute – Prince Yan Xun. Turns out the flute is a musical instrument in Beauty troops. He expresses regrets about not being able to return home and even if he wants to, he doesn’t have a home anymore with his brother removing him from the family’s registry and his pregnant wife dead.
She asks for his reason of living and he reveals that if he dies, what will happen to Yan Bei’s Beauty Troop? They are his comrades, his family. His responsibility is to bring them back home, back to Yan Bei.
He wonders whether Chu Qiao and Yan Xun will believe him, but Chu Qiao states that Yan Xun is not off the hooks yet, still being watched every single day. “Him believing in you or not is meaningless.” She doesn’t mind they they left Yan Bei in the most critical moment but if they are gonna live, they have to live with a goal, a mission in mind. What is their goal right now? If the living doesn’t have hope and perseverance, they are like the dead.
The future days ahead of him, what steps will He Xiao take?
—– END —–
Kappy: The directing has been one of the weakest areas of this drama but it’s the first time I found myself raging behind the monitor. I need to remember this director name and avoid his works at all cost in the future. I feel like he’s out there to ruin Yue-Chu Qiao’s ship for me, with his non-stop Chu-Qiao-slips-and-Yue-to-her-rescue moments. Like he legitly does it in a way that spoils Chu Qiao’s image as a capable person, reducing her character to that of a ditzy person. You need to stop with that director. There are plenty of ways to show romance and romantic moments without tarnishing the character’s capabilities. Same goes with all the fighting scenes, ending always with cool poses but has no tension of a fight. Severely disappointed in the execution.
I’m hanging on for Li Ying and the cast member’s hard work right now but it’s getting real thin.