Mo Jun Jie says that sometimes he thinks the world is too noisy, to the point where sometimes he covers his good ear so he can live in a world of silence. He’s always known that he’s a bit strange and there’s no one quite like him. He’s always felt alone… until he saw Chen Yun Ru, a girl who was strange like him.
He finds himself watching her. He feels a sense of curiosity toward her, more than a sense of romantic attraction.
One day he sees her shouting off a rooftop. He’s too far away to hear, but he covers his good ear and reads her lips. “I hate this place,” she yells. “I hate this world. I hate myself for living alone in this world.”
Jun Jie says that was the first time he heard her voice and the first time he understood why she’s different from other people.
Chen Si Yuan is a terrible student. His grades in all his classes added together just add up to 100. But he’s saved when Yu Xuan returns with her own grades… which are worse than than Si Yuan. Si Yuan gloats, saying now Yun Ru will be the one who gets beat by their mother. But everyone’s surprised when Yun Ru’s mother hugs her and says that she loves her and will wait for her to get better. She suddenly hugs both Si Yuan and Yu Xuan, making them both uncomfortable with her sudden affection.
Si Yuan and Yu Xuan end up cooking together. But neither know how to cook. They shy away from the sizzling oil of their wok and neither want to eat the burnt food they cook. They end up going out to a restaurant.
Yu Xuan asks Si Yuan why he ran away from home that day that Yun Ru got injured. He doesn’t want to answer, but Yu Xuan threatens to beat it out of him. He finally admits that he overheard her fighting with their parents. He says that he knows their parents have always liked him over her because he’s a boy. He doesn’t blame Yun Ru for disliking him and says he doesn’t like her much either, but he didn’t like how their parents were treating her.
Yu Xuan guesses that Si Yuan ran away because of Yun Ru, in the hopes that neither parent would abandon her. She also guesses that he’s always acted out because he wanted her parents to like his quiet, obedient sister instead. She’s suddenly affectionate, but he tries to brush it off.
Si Yuan’s “friend” suddenly shows up at the restaurant and calls him outside, where some other “friends” are waiting. They bully him and frisk him for money, then take his cell phone. Yu Xuan sees them and tries to intervene, but Si Yuan blocks her way and drags her home.
Yu Xuan worries over her brother at school. Zi Wei and Jun Jie find her and ask what’s on her mind. She asks Jun Jie what he would do if he found out his brother were being bullied. Zi Wei responds that of course he would beat up the bullies so they don’t dare bother his brother again, but Yu Xuan snaps that she didn’t ask for his advice. Besides, it wouldn’t be very appropriate for a 27-year-old like her to beat up some kids.
Zi Wei thinks of a solution. The next time Si Yuan gets bullied, the three friends intervene, dressed up like gangsters in reference to the Young and Dangerous film series. Yu Xuan calls herself Sister Thirteen from Anping. She scares off the bullies, even punching a wall to prove her point.
Afterward, she asks Si Yuan why he was being bullied. He admits that his bullies found out that their mom worked as a bartender and threatened to tell everyone. Yu Xuan responds that there’s nothing shameful about working as a bartender; it’s an honest job. Si Yuan finds it ironic because the old Yun Ru was so embarrassed about their mother that she wouldn’t even acknowledge her when she was at work.
But Yu Xuan as Yun Ru is much more mature. She tells Si Yuan that their mom is an adult and knows what’s important and what’s not. Their mother puts her children before her pride, so she works as a bartender in order to care for children. Yu Xuan isn’t ashamed of Yun Ru’s mother at all. In fact, she think she’s super cool. It’s surprisingly thoughtful, and Jun Jie notices Zi Wei staring at Yu Xuan.
Zi Wei invites Yu Xuan and Si Yuan to Grandma Mo’s for some shaved ice. She and Si Yuan banter and fight on the way over. Zi Wei smiles at them and says to Jun Jie that Yun Ru really does seem different. Jun Jie nods in agreement, but doesn’t smile. “She’s like a completely different person,” he says.
At Grandma Mo’s, Yu Xuan and Zi Wei banter over his affinity for sweets and his love for Grandma Mo’s shaved ice. He tells Yu Xuan that his mother told him men who like sweets are sweet to their wives. His words and actions are overly familiar. In fact, they’re exactly the same words that Quan Sheng has said to Yu Xuan before. She stares at him for a moment too long. He catches her staring, and she tells him that a boy she once knew told her the same thing. Her smile looks like it could turn sad any moment.
Jun Jie watches their interactions with not quite a smile, but not quite a frown. Instead, he just thinks about how this Yun Ru sitting in front of him, bantering so easily with Zi Wei, is so different from the girl he used to watch singing to herself in a record shop. He blocks out their conversation with a hand over his good ear, and closes his eyes, thinking about when he could Yun Ru’s voice singing along to “Last Dance” despite being separated from her by a layer of glass.
Mama Chen wakes up to find Si Yuan and Yun Ru joking around in the kitchen. They tell her to sit down and give her some congee, which brings tears to her eyes. She’s never seen her children act so warm toward each other, or toward her. This is the first time in a long time they’ve all sat down and had breakfast together.
Mo Jun Jie ponders Chen Yun Ru’s transformation during class. He’s scribbled in a textbook “Chen Yun Ru -> injured -> change??” Class ends and Zi Wei invites Jun Jie out to play ball, but Yu Xuan shows up asking Jun Jie to tutor her. Xie notices and sits there, listening jealously while fuming. He subconsciously scribbles circles on his paper, breaking his pencil tip.
Zi Wei is bored while Jun Jie tutors Yu Xuan. He bounces his basketball around the classroom. When Yu Xuan tells him to stop, he stares at them, watching as their heads get closer and closer together… his basketball slips from his hand, breaking them up. He excuses himself and leaves. Yu Xuan watches him go.
Zi Wei stews while riding home on his motorcycle, wondering why it bothered him to see Yun Ru and Jun Jie get closer. Shouldn’t he be happy for his friend? He buys a snack from a roadside stand and then there’s this adorable sequence where a little girl spots him, about to eat his snack, and mirrors his movements. He finally offers her one of his snacks. (Oh my gosh, don’t tell me this is a young Huang Yu Xuan.)
Jun Jie suddenly remembers a study session with Yun Ru before her accident. At the time, he had shown her a doodle in his textbook. She found it funny, but said that she didn’t like doodling in her textbooks. Now, Jun Jie doodles in his textbook again and shows Yu Xuan. She laughs openly and then adds to the doodle with some of her own. He stares at her, laughing so openly, so different from the Yun Ru before who wouldn’t draw in textbooks.
Zi Wei sits with a little girl, asking if her mother ever told her to not accept food from strangers. Where is her mom? Does she know she’s here? The little girl says that her mom’s busy, so she only has her grandma. Where’s grandma? At home. The little girl got lost and doesn’t know how to get home.
Realizing he might now be a kidnapper, Zi Wei immediately starts to call the police, but the girl starts crying. She doesn’t want the police. Zi Wei decides to try to find out where she lives. She doesn’t know what it’s called, but she describes a tall white building with a red roof, which is a signature fort building in Anping. (Which is where Yu Xuan is from!!)
Zi Wei goes to Anping, but can’t find anyone who recognizes the girl. After some searching, she points, but she just wants a drink from a roadside stand. Zi Wei buys her a drink and find she’s disappeared when he turns around. He almost panics, but then sees she’s been lured to a DIY toffee stand. He makes some toffee with her and then they play so pinball. It’s basically a date.
They end up at a restaurant where the girl eats messily while asking Zi Wei whether he has a girlfriend or a crush. He says he has neither. The little girl asks Zi Wei what kind of girl he likes. He’s sputters, but starts describing a girl while thinking of Yu Xuan. The girl suddenly says, “I think the girl you’re describing is me.” (SHE’S TOTALLY YU XUAN.)
After lunch, Zi Wei and the girl are riding along when she suddenly points and says that her grandma’s house is that way. Sure enough, they find her grandma. (Was she just playing him the whole time?)
Before Zi Wei leaves, the girl runs back outside and tells him, “My name is Huang Yu Xuan. You better not forget me!” He smiles and says he definitely won’t forget. (I’m dying. Also she is just TOO DANG CUTE!)
Jun Jie walks Yu Xuan home after their tutoring session. He’s more quiet than normal, and she asks if it’s because he’s annoyed with her tutoring sessions. He says that’s not it, then tries to explain how she feels really different from the Chen Yun Ru who used to walk around with her headphones in and her head lowered against the world. Seeing her frown, he quickly tries to backtrack and say that he doesn’t mean to say the new her is bad, just different in a way he’s not used to yet. She reassures him that she’s not angry and that the Chen Yun Ru he knows might return soon, which strikes him as an odd thing to say. She pats him on the shoulder reassuringly.
Little do they know that Xie has been following them. He watches Yun Ru pat Jun Jie with a dark look in his eyes. But in his twisted mind, he sees her move to kiss him. She then turns and looks straight at Xie at the last moment, smiling evilly and saying, “You want me, right?”
Jun Jie and Yu Xuan walk away, but Xie sees a shadowy ghost version of Yun Ru left behind. The ghost-like version smiles at him and holds out a hand, telling him to come. He smirks and shudders in anticipation. (Is he haunted? Crazy? Both?)
At night, Zi Wei suddenly realizes Huang Yu Xuan sounds familiar, and connects it to Yun Ru’s dream. He smiles and nods to himself as he remembers Yun Ru’s story about how the two of them were happy.
At school, Zi Wei gets a note from a girl in Class 8 (Yun Ru’s class) asking to meet in a back corner of campus. He assumes it’s Yun Ru, and asks Jun Jie if he wants to go with him. Jun Jie says no.
There’s no one else in sight at the corner of campus. Zi Wei daydreams that Yun Ru called him to confess again, but quickly shakes the thought away. Why would he even think something so sappy? A girl calls out his name and he turns around, smiling and thinking it’s Yun Ru, but it falls when he sees that it’s not her. It’s actually the other girl with the crush on him, Cai Wen Rou, and she tells him that she likes him.
Jun Jie has followed Zi Wei, a little suspicious and a little jealous, but is surprised when Yu Xuan shows up behind him. If she’s here, then who is that with Zi Wei? They soon get their answer.
Zi Wei doesn’t even know what Wen Rou’s name is. He asks her, and when she says “Cai Wen Rou,” he quickly responds saying that a fortune teller once told his mother he absolutely could not marry someone with the surname Cai or he’d live a short life. He smiles charmingly and apologizes, but she’s pissed and stalks off. Jun Jie and Yu Xuan quickly turn away and pretend they weren’t eavesdropping, but Wen Rou glares at Yu Xuan as she walks by.
Later that night, Yu Xuan is doing her homework at the record shop when she remembers something from her college days. Quan Sheng had once used the same line about a fortune teller saying he couldn’t marry a girl with a certain last name as a way of rejecting someone. Can all of these really just be coincidences?
The next morning, Yu Xuan finds that someone has left a bunch of stalker photos of Yun Ru in her desk. She shows Jun Jie and Zi Wei, excited that they’re starting to lure out the attacker. But Jun Jie is more skeptical. He’s worried that the attacker is trying to lure them into the trap, because he’s never left evidence before. But for now, they decide that their best bet is to follow Yun Ru after school and hope to catch someone taking photos.
The school officer comes by and Zi Wei and Jun Jie run off to lure him away so Yu Xuan doesn’t get caught. They get punished with cleaning classrooms after class. Yu Xuan joins them in solidarity. She starts coughing at the dust. Jun Jie offers her a mask and they fight over who should wear it. Seeing that, Zi Wei gives his own mask to Jun Jie and leaves to go clean the auditorium.
As Yu Xuan cleans, she starts humming “Last Dance.” This reminds Jun Jie of past Yun Ru and how she had confided in him that she doesn’t know how to have friends. Meanwhile, Yu Xuan as Yun Ru rants that Zi Wei is such a slacker that he probably ran off and has left them to clean all on their own.
Sure enough, she catches him slacking off in the auditorium, wondering why he always feels so annoyed whenever he sees Jun Jie and Yun Ru talking. Yu Xuan sits down at the piano and starts tapping out the melody to “Last Dance.” Zi Wei watches her, entranced.
She looks up and catches him staring at her. They lock eyes for a long moment, then awkwardly break eye contact and stand up.
Jun Jie, Zi Wei, and Yu Xuan finish cleaning but get caught in a downpour. Yu Xuan has an umbrella in her bag, but it’s not big enough for the three of them. Zi Wei tells Jun Jie to take Yun Ru to work. Jun Jie thinks back to earlier, when he heard Yun Ru playing the piano, then caught her and Zi Wei staring at each other. He tries to tell Zi Wei to take her.
Frustrated with their indecision, Yu Xuan says that they can just share the umbrella. It ends up flying away in the wind, so they all get caught in the downpour anyway. Jun Jie tries to chase after it, but Yu Xuan yells at them to forget about it. She starts running through the rain, Zi Wei stares after her. He’s in looove. He and Jun Jie run after her.
They arrive at the record shop and are all soaked. The store is unlocked, but Uncle Wu isn’t anywhere in sight. Yu Xuan goes in first to grab some towels and tells the boys to come in after her, but Zi Wei stops Jun Jie. “I think I’ve fallen for Chen Yun Ru,” he admits.
Hmmm anyone else suspicious of the store being unlocked with Uncle Wu not around? Could there be a psychotic stalker waiting somewhere inside for Yun Ru?
This episode continues to give me so many feels for our characters! Zi Wei’s “date” with the young Huang Yu Xuan killed me, as well as all the scenes where he has the exact same mannerisms as Quan Sheng. He and Yu Xuan are so fated to love each other. It’s adorable and heartbreaking, all at once.
Zi Wei and Jun Jie are really taking this brotherhood before girls relationship to a whole new level, each pushing the other toward Yun Ru despite their own feelings. But it’s also quite obvious that they don’t really like the same girl. Jun Jie is the one who actually likes Yun Ru, while Zi Wei has fallen in love with Yu Xuan. Jun Jie seems to be recognizing this as well. He hasn’t quite solved the mystery of Yu Xuan, yet he recognizes that the Yun Ru he knows now isn’t the girl he fell in love with.
I love how Yu Xuan’s warmth is infectious and radiates outward to impact everyone around Yun Ru. Whether all her radical change is something that Yun Ru would want is debatable, yet there’s no arguing that Yu Xuan has done a lot to help her own family heal. On the one hand, it’s kind of sad that this kind of radical change would never have been possible if Yu Xuan hadn’t hijacked Yun Ru’s life, yet at the same time, perhaps Yun Ru would have made it there one day, given the chance. Her budding friendships with Jun Jie and Zi Wei were already making her smile more and come out of her shell.