Chinese Dramas, Drama Recaps

Recap: Love and Redemption (Ep. 41)

Xuan Ji is pressured by everyone around her to lead the sects in their quest to vanquish demons, even though that’s not what she wants. She and Si Feng try to maintain their trust in each other, but it’s tough when the rest of the world insists on pulling them apart.


Recap

Zi Hu and Yi Huan notice that Si Feng has disappeared from his place on the rooftop. Zi Hu guesses that he’s gone to look for Xuan Ji. Yi Huan asks what she thinks Xuan Ji’s response will be. Zi Hu thinks that Xuan Ji trusts him.

Zi Hu’s instincts about Si Feng going to look for Xuan Ji are right. He knocks at her door, but she doesn’t answer, so he goes inside to find the room empty. He’s worried that something has happened to her and rushes out, but Xiao Yin Hua intercepts him and reminds him that Xuan Ji is the God of War — she can protect herself. She shows him his hairpin, which is now broken, and tells him that she found it on the ground. Xiao Yin Hua thinks it’s clear evidence that Xuan Ji has ditched him and cut ties with him.

They’re interrupted by cries of, “Fire!” Si Feng and Xiao Yin Hua finds Zi Hu, Yi Huan, and Ting Nu surrounded by blue flames. They try to run, but are sealed in by an enchantment. Si Feng recognizes the blue fire as the God of War’s special arcane fire. Xiao Yin Hua thinks that’s clear evidence that Xuan Ji has trapped them here with the intent of killing them.

Si Feng takes on his garuda form as the others combine their strength to try to break the enchantment. Hao Chen surveys his handiwork from the bamboo grove. He had stolen a bit of Xuan Ji’s fire when she attacked him. He tells himself that he had no choice but to do this because she refuses to give up. This is all for her good.

Si Ming appears behind Hao Chen with bad news. After the God of War woke up, her life column patched itself back together and had a sudden burst of evil energy. Si Ming is concerned that the God of War’s internal demons have already manifested. If they take hold, then it’ll be impossible for her to return to the heavenly realm.

Hao Chen knows that if Xuan Ji could decisively kill Si Feng, then it would be impossible for her to have internal demons. But now she’s trapped by this love. It looks like he made the right choice by making this decision for her.

Si Ming asks if Hao Chen plans on killing Si Feng himself. Hao Chen says that this is just a fire. A garuda can’t be killed so easily. Si Ming realizes that Hao Chen is just trying to provoke Xuan Ji and Si Feng into becoming mortal enemies.

Hao Chen says that he never wanted to do this. Initially, he wanted Xuan Ji to return to the heavenly realm the right way, through cultivation, so that she could have a new identity with new memories. But he was unable to prevent all of this from happening, so now the only thing way to ensure the God of War returns to the heavenly realm is making sure she continues doing her job of eradicating demons.

Si Ming applauds all the effort Hao Chen has put in for the God of War. He thinks that now that the God of War has seen Si Feng’s true face, it’s only a matter of time before she returns to the heavenly realm. Hao Chen sighs. It seems like he doesn’t think it’ll be quite so easy.

Si Feng helps protect the others so that they survive the night, though the lodge around them is nothing but smoldering ruins. Si Feng suffers a burn on his arm that Xiao Yin Hua fusses over. She still can’t understand why Si Feng continues to believe in Xuan Ji. He says that Xuan Ji isn’t the type of person to try to hurt someone through subterfuge. She may be the God of War, but she is also Xuan Ji. There must be a misunderstanding.

Zi Hu also thinks that Xuan Ji wouldn’t kill all of them. But where is she? Was she discovered by Shaoyang and forcibly returned to the sect?

Si Feng is worried that if Xuan Ji was discovered by her fellow sect members, that they might lock her up in that snowy cave again. He can’t let that happen. He’s ready to go to Shaoyang for her, but Xiao Yin Hua blocks him. She thinks he’ll die there. Zi Hu suggests that they can go together, but Si Feng thinks it’ll be more convenient for him to go on his own and leaves.

Chu Lei sternly lectures Xuan Ji for insisting on looking for Si Feng when a garuda killed her mother. Xuan Ji responds that there are good and bad demons, just like there are good and bad people. The garuda that killed her mother wasn’t Si Feng and Si Feng promised to help her find the real killer. She believes him. Her father slaps her.

Hao Chen rushes in as Chu Lei reminds Xuan Ji that her purpose as the God of War is to eradicate demons. Xuan Ji glares back and says that she may be the God of War, but she can tell good from evil and she can care. She’d rather not be the God of War if all it makes her is a murder weapon.

Chu Lei suddenly coughs and staggers, still weak from his injury. Xuan Ji tries to support him, worried. Hao Chen tells her to apologize to her father. Doesn’t she remember that the garuda injured him? But Xuan Ji can’t apologize. Chu Lei says that he’ll disown her, now that it’s clear she won’t even listen to him. He says that if she still respects him, she will swear to eradicate all demons from this world.

Xuan Ji protests, but finally relents and swears to eradicate demons, follow the way, and protect the common people. Chu Lei also wants her to sever ties with Si Feng. She protests. He reminds her that she’s betraying the trust of so many people with her stubbornness. She can’t do it. Chu Lei decides that he must die instead.

Hao Chen grabs his arm to stop him and urges Xuan Ji to swear it. Xuan Ji struggles with what to do. She wants to believe Si Feng but she doesn’t her father to be angry. She asks heavenly fate to pretend it never heard her next oath, then swears to eradicate demons and cut ties with Si Feng. If she breaks her oath, then let her be struck by heavenly lightning and lose all her six senses again. (Hmm, why do I feel like this is what got her into trouble in the first place?)

That doesn’t satisfy Chu Lei. He want her to swear on his life. If she breaks her oath, he will die. Xuan Ji glares up at him and asks if he must force her like this. Even Hao Chen seems to try to talk Chu Lei down, but Chu Lei refuses anything else.

Xuan Ji cries as she agrees and swears on her father’s life. Si Feng listens from outside. Hao Chen tells her that she must remember this oath and asks what she’ll do if she sees Si Feng again. Xuan Ji whispers that she’ll kill him or die trying.

Si Feng feels like a fool for having chased Xuan Ji all the way here when the broken hairpin’s message should have been clear. Hao Chen senses him leaving and goes outside to investigate.

Si Feng staggers as he runs through the forest, clutching his chest. He pauses for a moment against a tree and looks worriedly at his wrist, where his remaining green feather mark should be. But the mark has been ruined by his burn wound. Si Feng tells himself that if this is the decision Xuan Ji has made, he won’t make life more difficult for her.

Suddenly, he notices a flash of Lize Palace robes nearby and chases after it.

Ruo Yu lands at the secret place and tests the enchantment protecting it. He smiles when the zhulong darts out and then back in. It is as he thought. He starts digging around in his robes for something, but then Si Feng lands behind him.

Si Feng is at first happy to recognize Ruo Yu, then frowns. Didn’t he die? He realizes that Ruo Yu has been working for Yuan Lang.

Ruo Yu lifts his chin defiantly and says that Si Feng has realized too late. But now that he’s here, he might as well help out. Ruo Yu draws out the zhulong again. When it attacks, he dodges out of the way so that Si Feng is forced to defend himself.

While Si Feng and the dragon are distracted by each other, Ruo Yu pulls out some magical coins that Yuan Lang gave him to overcome the dragon. He uses them and the dragon starts trying to fly away. Si Feng pulls it back. Ruo Yu tries to enter the secret place, but then Si Feng turns to attack him while still keeping his hold on the dragon.

Ruo Yu demands to know why Si Feng is still trying to protect Shaoyang when Xuan Ji has hurt him so much. Si Feng warns him that resurrecting Mosha Star will destroy the world. Ruo Yu says he doesn’t care about the world — he’s just trying to survive. He flies away. The dragon breaks free of Si Feng’s hold and attacks him. Si Feng is forced to strike back. The Shaoyang sect arrives in time to see Si Feng make the dragon vanish into the chain of coins Ruo Yu brought.

Xuan Ji asks why Si Feng is here. Everyone else thinks it’s obvious — clearly he wanted to break into the secret place and steal the Liuli lamp, and he’s already killed the dragon — but Xuan Ji doesn’t believe them. The evidence is damning though, and Xuan Ji’s belief seems to waver. She asks Si Feng if he’s really here for the Liuli lamp.

Si Feng smiles wryly and says that he didn’t realize even Xuan Ji would look at him this way just because he’s a demon. It makes sense why she left without saying goodbye. He shouldn’t have followed her here. He tells the truth — that he came because he saw Ruo Yu and wanted to stop him. Killing the dragon was an accident.

Min Yan says that he saw Ruo Yu fall off a cliff with his own eyes. Si Feng tells him that Ruo Yu didn’t die — he was working for Yuan Lang. But Min Yan doesn’t know what to trust anymore. Xuan Ji asks Si Feng to explain himself, but he says that it doesn’t matter what he says. Her mind is already made up.

Chu Lei is ready to kill Si Feng today, but Xuan Ji rushes to shield him yet again. Chu Lei reminds her of the oath she just swore. Is she really trying to protect Si Feng now? Xuan Ji says she isn’t trying to protect him. She improvises and says that maybe he’ll be of use if they keep him hostage and ransom him to Lize Palace.

Chu Lei isn’t convinced and is determined to kill Si Feng, but Heng Yang stops him. He thinks that Xuan Ji’s suggestion was reasonable. He suggests locking Si Feng up in Mingxia Cave. Once the other sect leaders arrive, they can decide together what to do with him.

The Shaoyang elders try to figure out what to do about the Liuli lamp, now that the secret place’s protective enchantment has been destroyed. Hao Chen just happens to recall that Xuyang Peak has a secret spell that will summon a new dragon. Heng Yang confirms that there is such a spell, but no one has ever used it before because nothing has ever happened to the dragon before. He says he will try his best to summon a new dragon. It will take him three full days. He tells Hao Chen to go fetch the other disciples at Xuyang so they can aid him.

Si Feng is locked up in Mingxia Cave, where Xuan Ji was once locked up in her youth. He now understands why Xuan Ji wanted to never come back.

Xiao Yin Hua paces worriedly. She can’t sense Si Feng anymore. Zi Hu is confident that Xuan Ji won’t let anything happen to Si Feng. What she’s more concerned about is the spirit keys. She wants to go to Lize Palace and steal them. Yi Huan likes that idea and gives her a map showing her his secret tunnel in. Ting Nu warns her to be careful and has her take Dang Kang, his spirit beast, with her.

Master Rong and Dongfang Qing Qi arrive at Shaoyang to discuss the situation. They’re worried that Tianxu Hall will free Wu Zhi Qi any moment now. Hao Chen reassures them that it won’t be that easy. Wu Zhi Qi is held captive in the demon realm, which is only accessible on the 15th of every month when the doors to Fenru City open. They still have time.

Dongfang and Master Rong suggest that they should try to exchange Si Feng for the spirit keys. Chu Lei thinks it’s unlikely they would, but Master Rong says that even if they could exchange one spirit key for Si Feng, that would temporarily block the demons. Chu Lei decides to send Min Xing to Lize Palace with the proposal. Ying Hong suggests that they should send Min Yan with him, because he’s interacted with the demons before.

Xuan Ji looks for her hairpin but can’t find it. She tells herself that Si Feng must have come here looking for her, not for the secret place. She rushes out to go to Si Feng, but Ling Long catches her and guesses what she’s trying to do. Xuan Ji obediently goes back into her room.

Instead, she gets Teng She to try and bring Si Feng some supplies, but he’s unable to break in. The commotion draws Si Feng’s attention and he appears in the entrance. Teng She tells him that Xuan Ji asked him to bring some supplies, but Si Feng says he doesn’t need them. Teng She guesses that Si Feng is upset Xuan Ji didn’t come herself. He explains that she got caught by Ling Long and sent him instead. Then he teases Si Feng for letting himself get caught by a bunch of mortals. He also asks Si Feng to explain why he was here so Xuan Ji can go beg for mercy or something. But Si Feng remembers how Xuan Ji swore to cut ties with him and defeatedly says that she doesn’t believe him and there’s nothing more he can say. He turns back into the cave.

Yuan Lang tells the gathered Lize Palace elders that Tianxu Hall and Lize Palace are now one. Once the demons succeed, their clan will be heroes. Yuan Lang receives the letter from the Shaoyang sect reporting that Si Feng has been captured and requesting a spirit key as ransom. Elder Luo thinks they should rescue Si Feng, but Yuan Lang says Si Feng doesn’t deserve to be rescued. He got himself trapped and if he can’t escape a bunch of mortals, that’s his own problem.

Yuan Lang orders for the two Shaoyang disciples to be killed and to send back a message saying that he doesn’t care if Si Feng lives or dies.

The Lize disciples attack Min Yan and Min Xing. Zi Hu appears, knocking out most of them, and tells Min Yan and Min Xing to come with her.

Min Xing is suspicious of Zi Hu and her demon magic. Min Yan tells him that she’s his friend. Zi Hu calls Min Xing ungrateful and teases him, saying that maybe she should just eat him now. She mentions that she heard they caught Si Feng. Min Yan looks down, so she knows it’s true. She points out that Min Yan should know what kind of person Si Feng is. He went to Shaoyang alone to look for Xuan Ji, yet they captured him and tried to ransom him? Min Yan tries to defend Shaoyang.

Zi Hu asks if they saw Si Feng try to break in with their own eyes. Didn’t they also try to accuse her of killing all those men?

Min Yan admits that he doesn’t know what to believe anymore, but to be honest, he doesn’t want anything to happen to Si Feng. He thinks the best outcome would be if they could exchange Si Feng for the spirit keys, so he can be saved.

Zi Hu laughs and says that she doesn’t know if Min Yan is naive or just plain dumb. Does he really think Yuan Lang cares about Si Feng?

Min Xing asks what she thinks they should do instead. “Steal,” she responds. It looks like she’ll have to take action herself. She says that she’ll need their help. Min Xing doesn’t want to, but she points out that they have no other choice. She suggests that they can play finders keepers. They enter together and whoever finds the spirit keys can keep them.

Zi Hu shows Min Yan and Min Xing through Yi Huan’s secret tunnel. The last part of the secret entrance is the pool of bitter water. Zi Hu tells Min Yan that he needs to carry her over. The water is harmless to humans, but harmful to demons, especially fox demons like Zi Hu. Zi Hu teases Min Yan — is he too shy to carry her across?

As they cross the pool of water, Min Yan admits to Zi Hu that he used to be biased toward her and that’s why he always opposed her. It wasn’t until after he thought she died that he realized she was actually a worthy friend. Zi Hu claims that she has no interest in being friends with Min Yan, but if he’s able to get over his prejudices toward her, then shouldn’t he trust Si Feng?

Min Yan and Min Xing split off from Zi Hu after they get into the Palace. They find a room with multiple spinning astrolabes, then hide when Yuan Lang and the astrology elder from Tianxu Hall enter. They watch as the elder pulls out a magical object that turns the walls of the rooms into a projection of the galaxy. He tells Yuan Lang that the two stars Luohou and Jidu have gotten closer together. It means that Mosha Star’s star spirit and soul are getting closer together and sense each other.

The two laugh. Mosha Star’s resurrection is only a matter of time. The elder congratulates Yuan Lang.

Min Yan moves and Yuan Lang senses him. He teleports closer to their hiding place, but the hallway is empty.

Min Yan and Min Xing flee from some Lize disciples but then get cornered when another group comes at them from the other direction. They start to fight. Zi Hu spots them and sighs at how dumb they are, then sends in Dang Kang to help them. Dang Kang rolls in and knocks out the Lize disciples, then teleports himself, Min Yan, and Min Xing away with a happy trill.

Dang Kang deposits Min Yan and Min Xing outside Lize Palace. It’s too risky for them to go back in, so they can only hope that Zi Hu succeeds. Min Xing says that they need to report to Chu Lei what they heard inside about Mosha Star and they leave for Shaoyang.

They report back to the sect leaders that Yuan Lang didn’t care about Si Feng. Min Yan suggests that perhaps Si Feng really has nothing to do with the demons, but Hao Chen chastises him. Min Yan should know best of all what demons are like after what he experienced at their hands.

Min Xing shares the other piece of bad news, that the Luohou and Jidu stars are about to join as one. Hao Chen knows that means Mosha Star is about to return. At the same moment, Ying Hong rushes in with bad news. The demonic smoke from the Liuli lamp has gotten stronger and Heng Yang was injured while trying to suppress it.

Hao Chen says there’s only one option left: have the God of War lead the sects in killing Si Feng. They can use his demon core to threaten the other demons. Min Yan looks alarmed at the suggestion. Master Rong wonders if Xuan Ji will be capable of killing Si Feng. Chu Lei trusts that she will — she said so in front of everyone. Retrieving Si Feng’s demon core requires entering the core of the spell holding him captive in order to suppress his demon energy. Hao Chen volunteers to go, but Chu Lei says no — he will go instead. He trusts that Xuan Ji will follow through.

Min Yan rushes to tell Xuan Ji what he heard. Xuan Ji wants to speak to her father, but Min Yan points out that he’s unlikely to listen and that the other sect leaders are present. Xuan Ji decides that they need to free Si Feng first. Min Yan says he’ll help. Xuan Ji is surprised. Min Yan says that there’s a lot he’s unsure about, but what he knows is that Si Feng was willing to live and die for them, so he won’t let him die.


Commentary

Hao Chen disappoints me with his choices. It seems like he believes that it’s Xuan Ji’s inability to kill Si Feng without regret that’s the problem? Meaning that Si Feng must always die? Why is that the answer? All that really tells me is that even though Xuan Ji seemed heartless in her past lives, she must have had some sort of regret after he died and that’s why she always failed?

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