Chinese Dramas, Drama Recaps

Recap: Love and Redemption (Ep. 45)

I’ve got a drinking game for this episode. It’s called “drink every time Xuan Ji holds Si Feng at swordpoint.” If we throw in all their past lives as well, that’s got to be some sort of record, right?


Recap

Xuan Ji tells Hao Chen that she plans on going to Lize Palace. He reminds her that Lize Palace is a demon stronghold. Even with her God of War powers, she won’t be able to make it through alone. Instead, he suggests a different location for her to meet Si Feng: the devil realm. It’s certain he’ll go there in his attempt to rescue Wu Zhi Qi, and only he and Xuan Ji have the ability to survive the evil energy there.

Hao Chen seems skeptical that Xuan Ji will actually be able to kill Si Feng, so he gives her another option. He pulls out a Jingqi (“energy cleansing”) Vase, which can absorb some of Si Feng’s evil energy. He hopes that if Xuan Ji finds herself unable to kill Si Feng, then at least she can use the vase and hopefully find some goodness in Si Feng. Whether she kills him or uses the vase is up to her.

Xuan Ji says that she understands takes the vase. She turns to leave again, but Hao Chen calls out to her one last time, telling her that she’s the only person he cares about in this world. She can’t be soft-hearted this time. Wu Zhi Qi must not be released.

Xuan Ji leaves and Hao Chen silently hopes that this time she’ll prove herself worthy of his trust in her ability to rid herself of her internal demons.

Ling Long goes to find her father and tells him that she thinks it’s time for her to leave. This time, she’s leaving on her own. She wants to separate from Min Yan. Chu Lei tells her that earlier in the day, Min Yan came to see him to ask for her hand in marriage. What game are they playing?

Ling Long thinks it’s impossible that Min Yan would have asked to marry her, but Min Yan appears and refutes her. He wants to marry her because she keeps doubting his feelings for her and he wants to give her no way out. He wants to make it undeniable that he loves her. Min Yan says that he wants to marry her and in this life, she’s the only one he will marry. Chu Lei smiles approvingly.

Ling Long repeats what she said before, that she’s not who she was before and isn’t suited to be his wife. Min Yan asks if she thinks she was really so great before. He points out her former flaws: her arrogance, her temper, the way she never cared about anyone else’s feelings. She asks why he still wants to marry her, then.

“Because I like you,” he responds, “Then, now, and in the future.” No matter what happens to her or how she changes, he will always like her. No one can make him give her up.

Min Yan kneels before Chu Lei and formally requests that Chu Lei allow Ling Long to marry him. He’s liked her for the past fourteen years.

Chu Lei chuckles and tells Min Yan to rise. He’s more than happy for Min Yan and Ling Long, but because of the imminent demonic threat, he can’t hold a wedding for the two of them. He says that if they wait, then he’ll be able to throw a lavish wedding once the threat has passed.

But Min Yan refuses to wait another day. Each day that goes by is another day that Ling Long suffers. His only worry is that it’ll be unfair to Ling Long to not have a nice wedding.

Ling Long smiles through her tears and says that she doesn’t mind. In the past, she was always the one causing Min Yan to suffer. The earlier they can be married, the happier she’ll be.

Chu Lei joins Ling Long and Min Yan’s hands and says that in five days’ time, he’ll throw a wedding for them and Xuan Ji.

Si Feng and Yuan Lang, accompanied by a group of Lize Palace disciples and a couple of Tianxu demons, head toward the demon realm. They get close enough that one of the evil spirits attacks a member of their group. He screams for help and Yuan Lang tries to shoo the spirit away, but it’s no use. He disappears.

Si Feng asks if Yuan Lang still won’t hand over the spirit keys. If they go any further, there will be even more evil energy. Or does Yuan Lang want to enter the devil realm with him?

Yuan Lang quickly demurs and holds the spirit keys out to Si Feng. Before Si Feng can take them, Yuan Lang dodges away and tells Si Feng that he’ll look after Ting Nu and Yi Huan for him until after Wu Zhi Qi is rescued. Si Feng asks if that’s a threat. Yuan Lang smiles and says he wouldn’t dare and claims that he’s just trying to ease Si Feng’s worries.

Si Feng gives him a sharp stare, then grabs the spirit keys and flies off. He reaches the entrance to Fenru City, where a tablet in front essentially declares, “Long live the Xiuluo.” Ting Nu’s drug works to ward off the evil energy. Si Feng uses the spirit keys to open the entrance, but before he can enter, Xuan Ji attacks him.

Si Feng smirks and points out that Xuan Ji and Hao Chen’s wedding day is nearing — how does she still have time to come here? Xuan Ji responds that she’s here to kill him.

Si Feng says that they’ll have to see whether she’s capable enough. He slides under her sword toward the entrance to Fenru City, but she casts a spell to block him from entering. She says that she won’t release the spell until the entrance is closed. He taunts her, asking if he’s still in her heart, even after she trained the Youqing technique with Hao Chen.

She angrily attacks him, but he dodges away and her strike ends up breaking the enchantment she cast over the portal. He flies in. Xuan Ji tries to follow but the portal closes behind him.

Suddenly, several disjointed voices echo around her, welcoming back their respected leader. The heavy doors at the top of the staircase open. Xuan Ji races up the stairs to enter. Zi Hu sees the doors open and manages to teleport herself through before they close again.

Inside, Xuan Ji calls out for Si Feng to show himself, but the cave around her is empty. A fiery spirit trails her, then Si Feng appears in front of her. He tells her that he’s here to save her. If she keeps yelling, she’s just going to wake up the evil Xiuluo spirits.

Xuan Ji tells Si Feng to make his move. “What if I won’t?” he asks. She holds her sword up to his chest and says that she’ll attack him until he does. Fiery spirits start to gather around them.

Si Feng slowly holds his sword up to Xuan Ji’s neck, then turns and strikes at the fiery spirits that have started to swarm them. She’s also forced to fight them off. Si Feng grabs Xuan Ji and pulls her onto a ledge.

Xuan Ji throws Si Feng off and warns him that she’s not going to let him off just because he saved her. He warns her to look at her feet. She looks down in time to see a hand extending up. She slashes at it. When she looks back up, Si Feng has disappeared.

Si Feng finds several murals depicting the war between the devils and the gods, but notices that there are no images showing Mosha Star and the God of War facing off against each other, despite each being the strongest of their respective armies. He finds a mural showing the God of War sitting in front of a mirror. In the mirror’s reflection is another face: a Xiuluo.

It’s proof that the God of War and Mosha Star are the same person. If Yuan Lang is allowed to open the Liuli lamp, then Xuan Ji will become Mosha Star and will never be able to turn back. Si Feng decides that Xuan Ji must not be allowed to see these images. He destroys the image in which the God of War sees her Xiuluo reflection and then runs off, just as Xuan Ji arrives where he once stood. She sees the ruined image and thinks it’s Si Feng sending a message that there’s no turning back.

Si Feng searches for the keyhole to the chains that bind Wu Zhi Qi. Xuan Ji catches up to him and again holds him at swordpoint. He dares her to kill him if she can. She says not yet — she wants to bring him back to Shaoyang first so that he can be held accountable to everyone. Si Feng laughs and points out that there’s nowhere for them to go but forward right now. So can he leave?

Xuan Ji tells him to walk, but warns him not to try any tricks. He walks forward. Something shoots out of the water and he catches it. She brings her sword to his neck, thinking he’s up to something, but then she sees the burn marks on his hand. He’d caught an evil spirit. She says that this is all of this is his own doing.

Si Feng agrees, then pulls out a book and holds it out to Xuan Ji. He told her he would find out the truth behind her mother’s death. In his hands is one of the garuda’s records from a thousand years ago. It’s evidence that the Xiuluo King gifted Yuan Lang with the evil energy that was used to kill her mother. He’s the only garuda who possesses it.

Xuan Ji throws the record to the ground. What use is it? She wanted him to bring Yuan Lang to justice in front of her, but where is he? Yuan Lang is back at Lize Palace while Si Feng is here, helping him rescue Wu Zhi Qi.

Si Feng starts to tell Xuan Ji that the person he’s trying to save isn’t Wu Zhi Qi, then sighs and says that one day she’ll understand all of the trouble he’s gone to. She demands to know what else there is for him to say. He’s made his stance clear.

Si Feng turns to look at the full moon, which has just risen, and smiles, saying that he’ll find an opportunity later to tell her everything. He starts to reminisce about the last time they saw a full moon together, back at Qingmu, but Xuan Ji holds her sword up to his neck and tells him to stop chatting. He’s coming with her.

Si Feng sudden collapses, claiming that the evil energy in the devil realm is too strong and has entered through his wound. He tells Xuan Ji to look at a shining lotus that floats in the air nearby. It must only be able to survive because it’s capable of cleansing evil energy. He asks her to help him retrieve the lotus. Maybe it can help heal him.

Xuan Ji goes to pick the lotus, warning Si Feng not to move. The full moon grows brighter and a portal opens up in the sky. Si Feng silently says an apology to Xuan Ji, then flies toward the portal, but Xuan Ji notices and appears in front of him, pushing him back. She holds him at swordpoint again, saying that Hao Chen was right. He’s changed.

Si Feng sees an evil spirit forming over Xuan Ji’s shoulder and warns her to watch her back. She thinks he’s trying to trick her again. The spirit strikes at them and then goes after Xuan Ji. It takes Si Feng and Xuan Ji working together to destroy the spirit. Xuan Ji holds Si Feng at swordpoint, again, and demands he hand over the spirit keys.

Si Feng spots Zi Hu flying in and knocks Xuan Ji back, then tosses the key to her, telling her to go rescue Wu Zhi Qi.

Wu Zhi Qi is still flipping angrily in his chains and yells at the sky that one day he’s going to break out and stuff the chains in the gods’ mouths. Suddenly, the chains break. He gleefully morphs back into his human form and revels in the return of his demon energy, looking around for whoever saved him.

He spots Zi Hu falling through the air and catches her. He recognizes her as the little fox. She smiles at him, saying that she did it. She saved him. He nods. She starts coughing, but tries to tell him that she’s fine. He tells her that he’ll thank her by giving her some of the best grapes once they get out of her. She says that all she wants is for him to not abandon her anymore, then tells him that Si Feng helped her free him and he needs to help Si Feng. Then she faints.

Wu Zhi Qi frets over her, then decides that he’ll go meet Si Feng right now. He carries Zi Hu and leaps upward.

The Shaoyang disciples whisper and frown at the sight of a red light beaming up at the sky. Hao Chen recognizes it as a sign that Wu Zhi Qi has been freed.

Yuan Lang sees the same thing and laughs. It’s time for the demons to the rule the world.

Si Feng and Xuan Ji fight. Xuan Ji asks if Si Feng is afraid she’ll kill him. He’s not, but says that before he dies, he needs to tell her that he’s not actually Mosha Star. She forces him away angrily. Is he going to keep lying to her?

Si Feng says he’s not lying. All of his painstaking efforts have been to protect the person he cares about the most. He’ll put himself in danger pretending to be Mosha Star if he has to. He just hopes that one day, they can be together again. He asks her for more time, again.

Xuan Ji doesn’t believe a word Si Feng is saying. Her sword vanishes and she starts walking toward the edge of the platform, saying that she hates herself for hoping that he’ll change back to who he was before. But today she’s realized that her Si Feng has changed and is never coming back.

Xuan Ji pulls out the vase that Hao Chen gave her and throws it at Si Feng. It starts absorbing his evil energy and he starts spitting up blood. Xuan Ji tells him to hang on — it’ll be painful, but once it’s over, they can be together again. But Si Feng collapses, in clear pain, and Xuan Ji is distraught to see him suffering. She tries to remove the vase, but can’t. She tries striking at it with her sword, but even that doesn’t work. She cries, devastated, as Si Feng looks like he’s dying.

Wu Zhi Qi appears and asks Xuan Ji what Si Feng did to her that she would use something as cruel as the Zhuque (Vermillion Bird) Vase on him. Instead of absorbing evil energy, the Zhuque Vase actually possesses the most evil energy in all of the heavenly realm. Even a god would be melted to water by it. Whoever gave it to her was lying to her.

Si Feng falls unconscious. Xuan Ji cries his name again, and now Wu Zhi Qi recognizes his name as the name of his savior. He can’t let him die. He summons Juntian Cehai and uses it to destroy the vase. Xuan Ji rushes to Si Feng, crying, but he’s unresponsive.

Wu Zhi Qi finds it quite strange that Xuan Ji was trying to kill Si Feng one moment and now so worried about him the next. But on the account of their thousand-year friendship, he won’t take it up with her. As for Si Feng, though, he must take him away. Xuan Ji isn’t listening, still focused on Si Feng.

Wu Zhi Qi slashes a hole in the devil realm with Juntian Cehai. “Until next time,” Wu Zhi Qi smiles, then disappears with Si Feng.

Xuan Ji is left crying by herself, clutching her heart on the platform in the devil realm.

Yuan Lang laughs delightedly as a gash in the universe opens up in front of him. Wu Zhi Qi appears and Yuan Lang approaches him with a smile, greeting him as a brother and saying that he’s finally succeeded in rescuing him. Wu Zhi Qi greets Yuan Lang with a smile, too, and a, “You’re not dead yet?” Then he makes Si Feng appear in his arms. He heard Si Feng was the one who rescued him. Yuan Lang was involved, too?

Yuan Lang’s smile drops a bit, but he quickly recovers and says that he went through a lot of effort to retrieve the spirit keys. As for Si Feng, he helped a little bit. But Wu Zhi Qi sees through him. Going to the demon realm is just a little bit of help? So why didn’t Yuan Lang come get him himself? He catches Yuan Lang looking at Juntian Cehai circling above them and asks if Yuan Lang missed him or Juntian Cehai.

Yuan Lang tries to convince Wu Zhi Qi to let him look at Juntian Cehai, but Wu Zhi Qi doesn’t fall for it. Instead, he asks where Yuan Lang is staying. He wants to heal Si Feng ASAP. Yuan Lang tells him about Lize Palace, but tries to say there’s no rush. “You’re not the one who’s dying,” Wu Zhi Qi responds, then says that he’s off to Lize Palace and disappears.

Yuan Lang frowns once he’s gone, but tells one of the Lize Palace elders to send word back to the Palace that Wu Zhi Qi is to be welcomed back with festivities.

A mural in the demon realm crumbles, revealing an image of Bai Lin standing before the God of War, who floats on her back above Mosha Star’s discarded robes.

Yuan Lang and the other Lize Palace elders wait impatiently for Wu Zhi Qi to arrive. It’s been an hour and he still hasn’t shown up to his welcome banquet.

Wu Zhi Qi finally flies in, stomping on a table and breaking it in the process. Yuan Lang forces a nonchalant smile and greets him. But Wu Zhi Qi is not smiling. He calls out Lize Palace for holding a banquet when the fate of their leader — who is also Mosha Star and saved him — is uncertain. Wu Zhi Qi sends the tables and food flying, saying that no one is to eat or drink unless they want to feel his wrath.

Wu Zhi Qi tells Yuan Lang to hurry up and go save Si Feng. Yuan Lang says he doesn’t know anything about healing, but Wu Zhi Qi knows someone who does. He calls up Ting Nu.

Ting Nu tells Yuan Lang and the rest of the Lize Palace elders what he told Wu Zhi Qi earlier. Because Si Feng is suffering from the effects of both the evil energy and Zhuque Vase, he can only be saved by two demons who are stronger than him. Only Yuan Lang and Wu Zhi Qi fit the bill.

Yuan Lang doesn’t immediately respond. Wu Zhi Qi views him with suspicion. He’s not willing to save Mosha Star? Yuan Lang voices his doubts that Si Feng is Mosha Star, given his energy. Wu Zhi Qi asks who else could survive for so long after being under the vase. Unless Yuan Lang’s doubts are because he has other plans like he did a thousand years ago when he betrayed the demons.

The Lize Palace disciples start whispering. Yuan Lang asks what Wu Zhi Qi means by that. He smiles and says he just heard a few stories, but he’s sure that they don’t mean anything. Yuan Lang only went to the heavenly realm to be a spy, right? He would never betray the demons, because they all know that Yuan Lang is the one who cares the most about the demons.

Yuan Lang smiles and says that Wu Zhi Qi is too right. He’ll agree to what Wu Zhi Qi says. Wu Zhi Qi smiles back.

Teng She sneaks into Bai Lin’s personal library and browses the shelves there, but can’t find anything. He finally lies down to think and then happens to spot a scroll hidden under a shelf. He shakes his head as he reads it. Never in his life has he heard of someone who has suffered so much. He doesn’t notice Qing Long has found him until he looks up.

Si Feng wakes up in his bedroom to find Yi Huan and Ting Nu by his side. Yi Huan shakes his head at how Si Feng has narrowly dodged death yet again. Xuan Ji is more cruel than he thought. Si Feng sighs and says that maybe he’s kept too many secrets from Xuan Ji, and that’s why she did what she did. But he still believes that one day she’ll learn the truth and understand.

Yi Huan tries to drive home the point that Xuan Ji is trying to kill him. Otherwise why would she use the Zhuque Vase?

But Si Feng ignores that and thinks that it’ll all be over soon, now that Wu Zhi Qi has been freed. He tells Yi Huan that he saw the God of War’s life in the demon realm. Xuan Ji is the God of War, but she is also Mosha Star.


Commentary

So Hao Chen has known who Xuan Ji is all along because he’s the one who made her who she is. That’s also why he’s so insistent that she’s his, because he literally made her. But then why is he so opposed to Si Feng? We all know that killing Si Feng has never helped Xuan Ji succeed in the past, so why would his death be the answer now?

At this point, I’m disappointed by how every time I think Hao Chen is being well-intentioned, he’s actually not. I wanted to believe that he was compassionately giving Xuan Ji a real way out with the vase. But alas, he was not.

I like Wu Zhi Qi, though. He and Teng She seem very similar, so I’m happy he’s out and will be a lot more present now.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s