Chinese Dramas, Drama Recaps

Recap: Love and Redemption (Ep. 56)

Si Feng tries to bring Xuan Ji back, and while it’s not all smooth sailing, he manages to find evidence that Xuan Ji has more influence on Luohou Jidu than he’d like to admit. All is not lost — there’s still some hope.


Recap

Si Feng goes to find Luohou Jidu early on the morning of the last day of their bet. Luohou Jidu asks if he’s here to concede early, but Si Feng says that he’s here to remind Xuan Ji of everything they’ve been through. He throws up an image of the tree with the windchimes from Qingmu. Luohou Jidu makes the image vanish. Si Feng calls him out for hiding from these reminders because he’s afraid he won’t be able to suppress Xuan Ji anymore. Si Feng presses harder, reminding Luohou Jidu that Xuan Ji loved blue flowers.

It seems to work. Luohou Jidu’s expression suddenly softens as he says, “My favorite flowers are blue.” Then Luohou Jidu remembers the wine from Fuyu Island — Xuan Ji’s favorite wine. Si Feng hopefully asks if Luohou Jidu is Xuan Ji: is she back? Will she come to his side and not be controlled by Mosha Star’s heart soul anymore?

“I don’t know — can you see me in his eyes?” Si Feng nods and then smiles tearfully and says that yes, he can see her. He grabs Luohou Jidu’s hands and talks about other things that Xuan Ji loved and all the places they had been, how they had talked about finding a peach blossom grove to live in together. Luohou Jidu as Xuan Ji asks where the garuda are — are they in such a peach blossom grove? Si Feng responds that they’re at a marsh near Longshan Village. But when Xuan Ji presses for where, Si Feng suddenly freezes and staggers back. Xuan Ji isn’t here at all.

Luohou Jidu’s expression changes back to his usual smug look as he laughs at how deeply in love Si Feng is. He’s surprised Si Feng realized the truth so quickly, but he’s already learned everything he needs to know. Si Feng accuses Luohou Jidu of being underhanded for tricking him into revealing the garuda’s location, but Luohou Jidu points out that he waited until right after the three-day deadline had passed before using his tricks. He didn’t break his word.

Luohou Jidu tells Si Feng that his memories and his words mean nothing to him, but Si Feng says that he’s lying. He saw the change in his expression. He can tell that Xuan Ji is there and that Xuan Ji is influencing him. Luohou Jidu binds Si Feng with a spell. He says that he’s the devil leader — why would he need to lie to Si Feng? The part of his soul that is Xuan Ji may have thought she was in love, but now that she has all of his memories, she should know that promises of love and forever are nothing but a joke.

Si Feng asks why Luohou Jidu never believed in love. What happened to him that he would feel that way? Luohou Jidu tells Si Feng that the little memories he shares with a part of his soul does not mean he can speak freely to him. He declares that he’ll show Si Feng the price of his impudence.

It looks like Luohou Jidu wants to kill Si Feng, but then Si Feng says Xuan Ji’s name and Xuan Ji starts yelling at Luohou Jidu to release Si Feng. Luohou Jidu struggles to maintain his hold on the spell. He suddenly sees a vision of how Si Feng as the garuda in the heavenly realm had taken the blow for the God of War when Bai Lin tried to attack her. He releases his hold on Si Feng as he clutches his head and suddenly vanishes in a cloud of black smoke. Xuan Ji appears in his place.

She and Si Feng throw themselves into each other’s arms.

Xuan Ji tells Si Feng to leave, but he reminds her that they promised to not even let death do them part. How could he abandon her? Xuan Ji shoves Si Feng back and tells him to not be so stupid. She clutches her head, struggling, then is replaced again by Luohou Jidu who says, “Go away!”

But it’s too late — Si Feng smiles at Luohou Jidu because he has won and Luohou Jidu has lost. Xuan Ji has been here all along and she’s finally shown herself. “I told you that you can’t kill me,” Si Feng says.

Luohou Jidu glares at Si Feng and repeats that he’s only spared Si Feng’s life because of how he protected his soul. But he won’t let Si Feng treat his kindness like a bargaining chip. Luohou Jidu seals Si Feng’s meridians and tells him to stay right here in the devil realm until the garuda are found.

Luohou Jidu is meditating when a bell floats down to him with a message on it. When he reads it, half of the message is charred. The only words on it are “inseparable in life and death.” Luohou Jidu makes the bell disappear and asks Xuan Ji if she really doesn’t care about their thousand years of hatred and humiliation anymore. Xuan Ji responds that she doesn’t want to kill anyone, she doesn’t want to destroy the three worlds, and most of all, she doesn’t want anything to happen to Si Feng.

Luohou Jidu says Si Feng’s name with disgust. Does she really believe that they’ll be inseparable in life and death? Does she really want to be with him that much and believe that much in love? Doesn’t she remember what they have experienced? They once trusted their friends and lovers, yet look where it got them. “Trust me,” he says. “I’m doing this for us.” He promises to make those who have wronged them pay for what they have done.

Ling Long, Chu Lei, and Min Yan suddenly appear in front of Luohou Jidu and demand that he let Xuan Ji out. Luohou Jidu asks who they think they are to barge in like this. Chu Lei reminds Xuan Ji that they are her family. Luohou Jidu laughs. Their lives are so insignificant compared to his thousands of years, but he won’t kill them today out of recognition for the love and care they showed to his soul.

Ling Long reminds Xuan Ji that she, their parents, and Min Yan were by her side when she grew up without her six senses. They’re still here now — nothing has changed. Ying Hong and He Yang and the rest of Shaoyang are all waiting for her to come back. Chu Lei reminds Xuan Ji that she may have lived many lifetimes, but in this life, their blood relation won’t change. “I will always be your father,” he says.

Luohou Jidu’s image wavers as he struggles internally, but then he regains control and knocks the three back with a wave of his arm, calling them noisy. What blood relations and friendship? They’re all just noisy distractions. It seems like they love talking about their feelings, but what’s more important to them: their feelings or their lives?

Luohou Jidu attacks them. They throw up a shield. Chu Lei reminds Xuan Ji about her mother and how her mother always said that Xuan Ji might not be able to express it, but her heart is kind. Chu Lei trusts that this still holds true and tells her to come back to them.

Luohou Jidu struggles with himself, then gives up on his attack, but says that he isn’t one to pull back. The heavenly realm must reap the bitterness they have sown and get what they deserve. He doesn’t have time to waste killing them right now. He tosses Chu Lei an artifact. When heavenly fire rains down on the world, they can use the artifact to activate an enchantment that will protect them. Before they can say a word, he makes them vanish with another wave of his arm.

Si Feng approaches Luohou Jidu with a smile, recognizing that Luohou Jidu is incapable of killing him and also incapable of killing them because there is still human affection in his heart. He might not admit that he’s Xuan Ji, but she’s been affecting him all along.

Luohou Jidu closes his eyes and says that these are all just illusions. The heavenly realm made his soul go through ten lifetimes in the mortal realm because they wanted the illusion of human love to wear away at his resentment.

“You’re all just the heavenly realm’s pawns,” he says as he turns to Si Feng. Only by destroying these illusions can he let the heavenly realm know that he isn’t Xuan Ji. His hatred can’t be smoothed out by sentiment. He won’t let himself be manipulated like a pathetic fool by the heavenly realm like they have.

“Will that make you happy?” Si Feng asks. Instead of being manipulated by the heavenly realm, he’s letting himself be manipulated by hatred. Why can’t he let go of his hatred and take a good look at himself?

Luohou Jidu laughs at Si Feng telling him to let go of hatred. Si Feng can’t even let go of Xuan Ji — who is he to tell Luohou Jidu to let go of the hatred that is in his bones? Luohou Jidu asks Si Feng if he knows how the God of War came to be.

Luohou Jidu transforms into the God of War with a yell. The God of War glares up at Si Feng and says that she’ll show him how she came to be, and then he can tell her whether she can or should let go of her hatred.

The God of War turns and bares her shoulders. All across her back and shoulders are a network of scars, like she’s been sewn together. The God of War tells Si Feng that it was Bai Lin who did this. She thought Bai Lin was a once-in-ten-thousand-years type of close friend. She trusted him unconditionally. She didn’t care about the difference between the devils and immortals. They would frequently drink together in Bai Lin’s pavilion. But then the war started between the devils and immortals. She thought that their friendship could bridge the divide between their clans — she never thought Bai Lin would plot to harm her. The God of War shows Si Feng a vision of exactly who Bai Lin is.

Luohou Jidu and Bai Lin drink together at Bai Lin’s pavilion in the heavenly realm. Bai Lin sighs that their days drinking together like this are numbered, because of the war. He fears that it won’t be long before the battle reaches the Heavenly Palace and wishes that the heavenly realm had a peerless warrior like Luohou Jidu.

Luohou Jidu admits that he never wanted the devils and demons to war with the heavenly realm. He worries that the longer the conflict goes on, the more difficult it will be to resolve. He proposes that Bai Lin should marry a woman from his clan, to hopefully smooth tensions between the two sides of the war. The woman would also be able to help Bai Lin protect the heavenly realm.

But Bai Lin immediately says no. Gods and devils are incompatible. How could he marry a devil? Luohou Jidu asks what they’re doing here, drinking together, if devils and gods are so incompatible. Bai Lin says that Luohou Jidu is different from other demons and devils — he’s the only one who is his friend. But given the war, he doesn’t know for how much longer they’ll be able to drink like this.

Luohou Jidu says that the worlds are big and close friends are hard to come by. He’s willing to drink and chat with Bai Lin every day. Bai Lin stands up and asks if he really means that. Luohou Jidu also stands up. Does Bai Lin not trust him and their friendship?

Bai Lin sighs and looks out at the heavenly realm. He fears that this time, the war will wreak havoc in the three worlds and not even the gods will be able to escape disaster. Luohou Jidu tells Bai Lin that he need not worry about this war. He has good news. He takes a step toward Bai Lin, then suddenly grows faint. He realizes that something wasn’t right with the wine and asks Bai Lin what he means by this.

Bai Lin turns toward Luohou Jidu. Didn’t he just say he was willing to drink and chat with him every day? The only shame is that Luohou Jidu is Xiuluo, and Bai Lin will always feel ill at ease knowing that. But what if he made him into a member of the heavenly realm? Then they’ll never have to worry. Bai Lin raises a hand toward Luohou Jidu, who shrinks back. What is he saying? Then he faints and Bai Lin catches him with an apology — he must do this for the heavenly realm.

Luohou Jidu wakes up on a table with Bai Lin standing over him. Bai Lin tells him that he woke up earlier than he should have and that this next part won’t be pretty, but that’s okay. Pretty soon, he won’t remember anything. Bai Lin says that he figured out a way to give Luohou Jidu an entirely new form. He’ll be able to make a complete break from the past and no one will recognize him. This is the only way that they’ll be able to drink together everyday. “This is good for everyone,” he says.

Bai Lin summons a dagger and stabs Luohou Jidu in the heart. He tells Luohou Jidu that he will remove his two weapons made out of devil bones — their desire to kill is too strong. Later, he will help Luohou Jidu pick out a new weapon.

Bai Lin is told that the Heavenly Emperor has ordered him to release Luohou Jidu immediately. Bai Lin says it’s too late, but he promises to give the heavenly realm a new, peerless God of War.

Bai Lin pulls out the Liuli lamp and puts Luohou Jidu’s heart soul inside. Then he breaks off a piece of the lamp and sticks it into Luohou Jidu, to become his new heart. Bai Lin tells the unconscious Luohou Jidu that he will no longer be the Mosha Star, Luohou Jidu. From now on, he will be the heavenly realm’s God of War. Tomorrow, he will help him vanquish the Xiuluo. Luohou Jidu transforms into the God of War.

Now, the God of War tells Si Feng that she was once affectionate and faithful, but all she got in exchange was heartless betrayal. She never wanted to kill anyone, but Bai Lin forced her to become murder weapon. She wanted peace and prosperity, but Bai Lin made her kill her own brethren. “So tell me, should I be hateful?”

Her heart is just a piece of glass. It can’t hold all the feelings they care about. The ten lifetimes and God of War being sent down to the mortal realm have nothing to do with her. Because she is someone who doesn’t have a heart.

Si Feng cries as he approaches the God of War and gently puts her robe back on her shoulders. He hugs her and apologizes to Xuan Ji. If he had known earlier, he would’ve spent more time by her side. He wouldn’t have let her become like this.

The God of War throws Si Feng off, then transforms back into Luohou Jidu. “I told you, I’m not Xuan Ji, and I don’t need your pity,” he says. His heart soul has returned to where it belong and there’s no Xuan Ji or Si Feng or anyone in his heart. All it has is hatred and a desire to kill.

Si Feng shakes his head with a small smile. “I know you,” he says. And he knows that no matter how much hate there is, there is also still a bit of affection.

Luohou Jidu repeats his threat to get rid of Si Feng and Xuan Ji’s memories if Si Feng continues to be so presumptuous. Si Feng maintains his smile as Luohou Jidu walks away. He silently promises that he will find some way of saving Xuan Ji from Luohou Jidu’s hatred, even if it takes his life.

Teng She appears in the devil realm and intercepts Si Feng. He’s here to stop Si Feng from doing something stupid. He knows Si Feng is trying to send a message to the garuda to warn them about Luohou Jidu, but it’s a futile effort. All the bird demons who could carry the message are under Yuan Lang’s control. Teng She offers to carry the message instead, if Si Feng trusts him. Si Feng hands him the letter.

Teng She then asks Si Feng if he wants to save Xuan Ji. Teng She overheard Bai Lin and Zhu Que talking about drugging Luohou Jidu’s wine, then extracting some of his blood so they could re-seal his heart soul in the Liuli lamp. Teng She stole the Liuli lamp and the drug when no one was looking and now pushes them into Si Feng’s hand. He tested the drug and it seems like its only purpose is to knock out Luohou Jidu — it doesn’t seem to have any other side effects. He tells Si Feng to take them and decide what he wants to do with them.

When Si Feng returns to the main palace, he finds that all the garuda have been captured and are now chained and held at swordpoint. How could they have been found so quickly? Yuan Lang laughs and reminds Si Feng that he is also a garuda. He knows what part of the marsh would be best suited to garuda.

Si Feng tries to attack Yuan Lang, who easily knocks him back and calls him bold for attacking when his meridians are sealed. Yuan Lang pulls out a sword and says he should chop of Si Feng’s hands, but before he can, Luohou Jidu separates them with a warning. Si Feng is his personal servant. If Yuan Lang dares to harm Si Feng, Luohou Jidu will kill him.

Yuan Lang drops his sword and kneels to Luohou Jidu, telling him that Si Feng tried to attack him. But Luohou Jidu says that without his permission, Yuan Lang isn’t allowed to do anything to Si Feng, even if Si Feng is trying to kill him.

Luohou Jidu tells Si Feng to come back with him, but Si Feng asks how he’s any different than Bai Lin if he’s making Si Feng sacrifice his own kin. Luohou Jidu responds that he’s asking the garuda to sacrifice themselves not just for his own revenge, but to rebuild the world order. The garuda are insignificant in the grand scheme of things, and Luohou Jidu’s mind won’t be changed. Luohou Jidu declares that they will attack the heavenly realm again tomorrow.

Si Feng plays the zither for Luohou Jidu while he drinks some wine. Si Feng watches carefully, waiting for Luohou Jidu to close his eyes. Then he approaches him, saying that he must seal his heart soul again, for the garuda, and for Xuan Ji. But Si Feng hesitates, remembering what Luohou Jidu had said when he was the God of War, that he had been betrayed by his closest friend.

Si Feng puts the Liuli lamp down. Luohou Jidu laughs as he opens his eyes. He knows everything that happens in the devil realm and knew that Teng She had approached Si Feng, but was curious whether Si Feng would actually try to save his own clan if given the chance. Si Feng responds that he does want to save the garuda, but not like this.

Luohou Jidu says it’s a good thing that Si Feng didn’t follow through, otherwise things would have gotten ugly. He demonstrates what would have happened if Si Feng had actually put some of Luohou Jidu’s blood into the lamp. He puts a drop of his own blood in, then tosses the lamp, which bursts into golden flame and disappears. The golden fire is harmless outside of the heavenly realm, unless it comes into contact with Xiuluo blood. Then it explodes. Bai Lin had purposely allowed Teng She to overhear his conversation in an attempt to have Si Feng unknowingly blow up the whole realm.

Si Feng never thought Bai Lin could be so sinister. Luohou Jidu says that Si Feng should agree with him now, right? The heavenly realm deserves to die. But Si Feng says no. Everything that’s happened has been because of Bai Lin. The rest of the heavenly realm is innocent. If Luohou Jidu really wants to get his revenge, he should focus on Bai Lin. There’s no need to involve the rest of the three worlds.

Luohou Jidu says that he would love to find Bai Lin if he could, but Bai Lin always hides behind the rest of the heavenly realm. There’s no way he would meet alone with Luohou Jidu. The one who dragged the three worlds into this was Bai Lin, not him.

Si Feng offers to personally go to the heavenly realm to convince Bai Lin to meet with Luohou Jidu. He points out that Luohou Jidu has nothing to lose. If Si Feng succeeds, he gets to meet with Bai Lin and spare thousands of lives. If he fails, it just means that Luohou Jidu’s attack is delayed by a few days.

Luohou Jidu guesses that Si Feng is only doing this in the hopes that he will let Xuan Ji out. Si Feng readily acknowledges that that’s the case. Luohou Jidu tells him to take care of his side of things first — then they can talk. Si Feng smiles.

“Aren’t you afraid that Bai Lin will kill you?” Luohou Jidu asks. Si Feng responds that if he dies, then he only has himself to blame. He asks Luohou Jidu to give him and the rest of the world this chance. Luohou Jidu agrees.

Teng She learns that Bai Lin intentionally tricked him and points out that Bai Lin is being a little too sinister with his methods. Bai Lin responds that regardless of whether he intentionally tricked him or not, Teng She sided with demons. He may have been able to seal Luohou Jidu’s heart soul once, but he can’t do it twice. The only way to stop him is to get rid of him. If Xuan Ji and Si Feng have to be sacrificed, it’s a small price to pay.

Teng She suggests that Bai Lin could meet with Luohou Jidu if he really wants to solve this problem, but Bai Lin immediately rejects the idea. How could he, a leader of the heavenly realm, meet with a murderous devil? He declares that any demon or devil who approaches the heavenly realm be killed on sight, no questions asked.

Si Feng flies across the Shengsi Ocean and lands at the gates to the heavenly realm. The heavenly guards there surround him at spearpoint and tell him that all demons are to be killed.

Qing Long brings Teng She some food and wine and reassures him that he’ll figure out a way for Teng She to break his blood oath with Xuan Ji. He won’t let anything happen to him. Teng She tries the wine and food and promptly spits them out. They taste like mud, like everything else in the heavenly realm. Qing Long lectures Teng She about being too in love with the mortal realm’s food. He’s not a mortal — he doesn’t need food and drink to survive. His greediness is what got him in trouble.

Teng She tries to shoo Qing Long away, irritated with being nagged at. Qing Long suddenly gets alerted that someone has crossed the Shengsi Ocean. He starts rushing away, but Teng She blocks his way, binds him, then steals his medallion.

Teng She arrives at the gates of the heavenly realm as Si Feng fights the guards there. Teng She tells the guards to give way — he’ll take care of Si Feng. He convinces Si Feng to “fight” him, then takes Si Feng captive, saying that he’ll bring him to the prisons. One of the guards grows suspicious — isn’t Teng She being punished by Bai Lin right now? But Teng She pulls out his stolen medallion and bluffs his way out.

Once he and Si Feng are alone, he asks Si Feng if letting Bai Lin and Luohou Jidu meet would really fix everything. It’s not like Luohou Jidu is Xuan Ji. But Si Feng believes that Xuan Ji and Luohou Jidu are the same — they share the same fate and the same origin. He believes that what they want is not death, but justice. Teng She points out that it’ll be dangerous to try and approach Bai Lin, but Si Feng responds that if he doesn’t try, all the worlds will be in danger.

Qing Long appears, having broken free of his bindings. Teng She rolls his eyes and tells Si Feng to go — he’ll distract Qing Long.

Si Feng approaches Bai Lin’s palace. He’s quickly caught up in a spell that will kill him. Si Feng tries to tell Bai Lin that all of the three worlds need not suffer, but Bai Lin has no interest in what Si Feng has to say. He says that Luohou Jidu is the one who started it all and all demons and devils must be destroyed.

Bai Lin’s spell swirls around Si Feng and lifts him up, but then blue symbols glow from within Si Feng and break him out of the spell. Bai Lin recognizes it as the mark of immortal energy. But how? Si Feng doesn’t know what he’s talking about and says that Bai Lin probably mistook what he saw. Bai Lin tells Si Feng to stop lying — he knows who Si Feng is. He shows Si Feng a vision of the past.

The God of War struggles as she’s chained down with all the heavenly warriors surrounding her. But then a garuda flies in knocks everyone away: Si Feng. But at the time, Bai Lin recognizes him as someone else — Xi Xuan. Xi Xuan offers to take the God of War to Fenru City so that the heavenly realm can’t harm her anymore. Bai Lin says no and attacks, but then the Heavenly Emperor himself appears and tells Bai Lin to let her go.

The Heavenly Emperor addresses the God of War, telling her that because his son Xi Xuan is willing to give up his ten thousand years of immortality for her to have one more chance at life, he will allow her to spend ten lifetimes in the mortal realm to try and dispel her resentment. He acknowledges that it was the heavenly realm who committed the first wrong. What happens after is up to her. He asks Xi Xuan if he has any regrets giving up his ten thousand years of immortality. Xi Xuan says no. The Heavenly Emperor says that he may as well spend ten lifetimes in the mortal realm as well.

The Heavenly Emperor asks Bai Lin if he has any regrets. Bai Lin declares that everything he has ever done has always been for the three worlds. He has nothing to regret.


Commentary

Wow, I’m seeing Bai Lin in a whole new light. I pity him because he’s gone so wrong in all the wrong ways for all the wrong reasons. He’s the universe’s biggest hypocrite, but his hypocrisy is rooted in self-denial and delusions of grandeur. Everything he’s said to Xuan Ji now feels even more layered and complex and hypocritical, because he is the one who initially went rogue and caused all of this chaos.

Bai Lin betrayed his closest friend because he was of the wrong race. He turned his friend into a woman and fell in love with her (while continuing to deny it for a thousand years). But I think Bai Lin was in love with Luohou Jidu all along and unwilling to accept that he was, and that’s why he went to such extreme lengths and continues with this pretense that it’s for the good of the world. Because that’s probably the only way he can rationalize everything he’s done.

Doesn’t this make Luohou Jidu and Bai Lin the ultimate star-crossed lovers, even more so than Xuan Ji and Si Feng, or Zi Hu and Wu Zhi Qi? Everything Bai Lin has tried to make Xuan Ji do to Si Feng is exactly what he’s forced himself to do. He wanted Xuan Ji to kill Si Feng and avoid Si Feng because he was supposedly her internal demon or literally, her “heart devil.” But in reality, isn’t that because Luohou Jidu is and was Bai Lin’s own internal demon or “heart devil”? And “heart devil” in the most literal senses — he was a demon who was in Bai Lin’s heart. Bai Lin kept trying to rationalize his actions as being “for the three worlds” but his biggest internal turmoil is not what he did Xuan Ji, but what he did to Luohou Jidu from the start.

Also I love that Si Feng loves Xuan Ji so wholly and completely that he doesn’t care what she looks like. To me, that’s true love. I’ve always been a hopeless romantic and I’ve also always believed that love is between two souls. What better example of true love than Si Feng and Xuan Ji, whose souls find each other over and over again regardless of what body and life they’re in?

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