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    / Cruel Romance (2015) - , (..)

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    Episode 1 Recap:

    The episode opens up with our female protagonist, Jin Xiu (Chen Qiao En), in a competition to obtain the ribbon head that is on top of a bamboo tower. The prize for this year is a five colored cake which supposedly brings good luck and fortune when used to honor the descendants. Unfortunately another man has reached the top and snatched the ribbon before her but the man accidentally slips and she grabs him just in time to prevent him from falling to his death. In order to to thank her for saving him, he gave up the ribbon head to her and she wins the competition, happily bringing home the tub of cake. Back at home you see the father in a rage after hearing that she had attended the competition and was not acting accordingly like other females.

    Jin Xiu heads straight to her mothers room ignoring the housekeepers request that her father is summoning her. Her mom starts to chastise her for her actions but she says that the cake is a blessing that would ward off evil and diseases. Apparently her mom is sick and she wanted the cake to help cure her moms disease. She then asks if there is any news of her older sister, Ming Zhu, but her mom say there is still no news of her. Ming Zhu is Jin Xius half-sister that was born from a different mother who is the first wife of her father. Her mom laments that they have no idea of what their living condition is like ever since they left the family 14 years ago.

    The father finds Jin Xiu and starts chastising her for exposing herself in the public all the time. Jin Xiu apologizes to her father but her father says the rules are rules and that she needs to be punished. The atmosphere then lightens up as her father gives her the punishment of not allowing her to sleep and to collect dewdrops condensed on top of water lilies as medicine for her mother. This is not a real punishment and Jin Xiu happily thanks her father for not punishing her while her father brings out bag of her favorite biscuits. Jin Xiu seems to be a filial daughter and she also has close relationship with her father.

    While shes collecting dewdrops off of the water lilies in the middle of the night, a man appears from the lake and buries a watch in the dirt before he passes out. Jin Xiu discovers that it is teacher Chen who is the new teacher at her school and takes him home to care for him. Her fathers finds out that the teacher is hurt from a gun wound. Lao Ma, the housekeeper, seeing the gun that teacher Chen is holding, advises them not to bring in the man since he would only bring complications but the father, who is a doctor, ignores his worries and tells him to clear the blood stains on the ground and brings teacher Chen into the house, tending to his wounds.

    In the midst of extracting the bullet from his chest, teacher Chen suddenly wakes up and points his gun at her father. Jin Xiu quickly appeases him that he is her father and means no harm. Teacher Chen then tells Jin Xiu that he buried a pocket watch under the rocks and tells her to look for it. Jin Xiu immediately heads out to find the watch.

    While Jin Xiu is looking for the broken watch, a group of Japanese soldiers barges into the house killing anyone they see in sight. Teacher Chen tells her father to not tell anyone that they have seen him before or else it will bring them trouble and he flees. Everyone in the house is soon captured by the soldiers and they force the father to tell them the mans whereabouts. True to his words, the father says he has not seen anyone but the leader shoots the mother, killing her. Not able to withstand watching his master die, Lao Ma tells them the direction the man had fled in and upon hearing what they wanted to know, they immediately kill everyone in the house.

    Jin Xiu returns to the house after finding the pocket watch and finds her whole family killed. Her father hasnt died yet and tells her to run but while she is refusing to leave, a soldier shows up and her father blocks the flying bullets with his body. Watching the shots going through her fathers body, Jin Xiu flees as soldiers chase after her and is rescued by teacher Chen.



    Teacher Chen apologizes for bringing them all the misfortunes and asks her to bring the pocket watch to Saint Mary Cathedral in Shanghai. He pushes her down the hill to escape from the soldiers while he gets shot and dies. The soldiers find a button that fell off of Jin Xius clothes and the leader, Maeda Ryuichi (Qi Ji), demands everyone to find her in order to retrieve the secret document.

    Waking up after falling downhill, she returns home only to find her house engulfed in flames. Her entire estate is burned down and the only remnants they could find was a jade ring that was worn by her father. Devastated but left with no choice, Jin Xiu then heads to Shanghai to deliver the pocket watch as she had promised Mr. Chen and to find the assassinators to avenge her family.

    Our male lead, Zuo Zhen (Huang Xiao Ming) appears holding a package of medicine. He is given a fight scene where 10 other attackers are not his match and while boarding the ship, our valiant Jin Xiu senses that he is being followed, brings him to an area where he can hide, despite his protests. While in the cramped ship, people bump into her, sending her right into Zuo Zhens chest, making her awkward. She moves away from him but right at that moment, an attacker appears and Zuo Zhen kisses her to conceal himself. He leaves swiftly after telling her not to bother him.

    Feeling indignant, Jin Xiu follows him and tells him to apologize. At that point, one attacker finds them and directs his sword at Jin Xiu which Zuo Zhen quickly brings her into his arms and blocks it. He then gives her the package of medicine and pushes her away so that he can fight. The lead attacker takes hostage of Jin Xiu, demanding Zuo Zhen not to move or else he would kill her but Zuo Zhen replies that she has no relation to him and that he can proceed and kill her. Jin Xiu asks how he can be so coldblooded but Zuo Zhen replies that if she does die he would take proper care of her corpse.

    Seeing their conversation, the attacker figures that Jin Xiu is not a bargaining chip, pushes her away to attack Zuo Zhen. Jin Xiu falls overboard during the chaos and Zuo Zhen grabs her arm just in the nick of time. As she tries to bring up her other arm, she drops the pocket watch and she pushes herself away from Zuo Zhen to retrieve the watch that has been dropped into the sea. While searching for the watch underwater, she loses consciousness and Zuo Zhen jumps in to save her.



    Jin Xiu regains her consciousness and finds herself all drenched on top of bed. Upon seeing Zuo Zhen shirtless, she screams at the top of her lungs, huddling beneath the blankets. We are treated to some eye candy as Zuo Zhen shows off his muscular upper body while he wrings out his shirt, coolly asking what she was so afraid of when she had jumped into the ocean, not even afraid of death.

    He approaches her, sending her into a frenzy but he only wanted to bring her a towel. He then takes out the pocket watch wondering why she would risk her life for a measly item, and upon seeing the watch she quickly snatches it from his hand. He asks how much she costs, which she rebuts him saying that she never said she would sell herself. Zuo Zhen says there are many women like her who try to get close to him and gives her a chance to tell him what she wants. Jin Xiu responds that she doesnt know who he is and what he is talking about. Zuo Zhen takes her words with a grain of salt and replies that he doesnt care whether she knows who he is or not but he is giving her a last chance and to not overlook it which earns him a crazy lunatic remark from Jin Xiu.

    As Zuo Zhen gets off the boat, he stands there majestically as his entourage greets him. I find that its funny that there is no one else around them unloading from the boat like its their private ship but figured that he must have a private unloading route. Jin Xiu squeezes past him to unload from the boat first and Zuo Zhen yells after her, telling her that he is giving her a final chance to tell him a price for the pocket watch. Jin Xiu replies You already told me that was the last chance, and now you are saying the last chance again. How many last chances are there? She then continues saying that the pocket watch is very important to her and that she wont sell it.



    After hearing that, Zuo Zhen takes off the necklace he has on and shoves it in her hand, telling her that this is his promise to her: if she were to encounter any problems in Shanghai, when she takes out the necklace, he will resolve the problem. As he gets into his car, one of his entourage, Tang Hai (Cai Jun Tao), shoves Jin Xiu aside and it turns out he had stolen the pocket watch from her which earns him a disapproving look from another one of Zuo Zhens right-hand man, Shi Hao (Yang Le).

    In the car, they address Zuo Zhen as Er Ye and ask if he has gotten the medicine but he says that its been dropped. When he was saving Jin Xiu, she grabbed onto the packet of medication when she was trying to grab his hand and during the chaos dropped it into the ocean. The medicine was supposed to be for Mr. Feng and without the medicine, it is a problem. However, Tang Hai says that since they had specifically requested for Er Ye to personally bring back the medication, it must have been a trap laid out by Long Si who is affiliated with the Japanese. They then head directly to Mr. Fengs place.

    Back with Jin Xiu, a suspicious looking man pulling a rickshaw approaches her and asks her where shes heading to. She tells him Saint Marys Cathedral and the man quickly takes her luggage saying he knows a short route directly there. Our naive heroine is being conned.

    Zuo Zhen meets Mr. Feng who is his Shi Fu (which means mentor or teacher) and tells him he is incompetent for not being able to return with the medicine. This allows a chance for Long Si to criticize him and even hints to Mr. Feng that Zuo Zhen may have lost the medication on purpose. Zuo Zhen kneels down saying he is willing to take the punishment but Mr. Feng pardons him saying that in his state right now, he needs someone to take care of his business. Long Si continues to take this chance and says he knows of a medicine but requires Zuo Zhen to sacrifice a piece of flesh to use as part of the medicine. Zuo Zhen with a determined gaze, raises his dagger but as he brings it down, he is stopped by Shi Fu, who tells him that its not worth for him to suffer for his old life.

    Outside of the estate, the hot tempered Tang Hai is outraged at Long Si working with the Japanese trying to obliterate Zuo Zhen and suggests they tell Mr. Feng about it but Zuo Zhen tells him not to get ahead of himself. He then reminds Zuo Zhen that Ying Dong has returned from France and Mr. Xiang (Xie Jun Hao), who is Ying Dongs older brother, is holding a banquet to celebrate his return and asks if Zuo Zhen would attend. Zuo Zhen says that it was so fast, now Ying Dong has returned and Shi Hao reminds him that it was already two years since Ying Zhao left. Not getting a definitive answer from Er Ye, Tang Hai asks Zuo Zhen whether or not he will be attending the banquet but Shi Hao brusquely tells him that since Mr. Xiang had invited him, Zuo Zhen has no choice but to attend.



    Meanwhile Jin Xiu is being taken to some place by a shoddy-looking man. She realizes that the pocket watch is missing and tells him to stop but the man thinks that his scheme has been discovered so he pulls the rickshaw even faster. They arrive at some desolate alley and another man is already waiting to backup the man. Finally understanding her situation, she screams for help but the other man says there is no one around the area and proceeds to molest her. However, the man who pulled the rickshaw stops him, reminding him that they only want money and does not want to hurt the woman, causing the two men to fight. Seizing the chance, Jin Xiu grabs her luggage to run away but is caught by the man. Her suitcase drops open, and Zuo Zhens necklace falls to the ground. Recognizing Zuo Zhens necklace, the two mens faces are filled with fear. She realizes that the men are afraid the Zuo Zhen and boasts that if Zuo Zhen was to find out about all this, they would be in deep trouble. The two men drop to their knees begging her to forgive them and Jin Xiu agrees as long as take her to find Zuo Zhen.

    We are once again treated to some eye candy as Zuo Zhen is changing into his suit to attend the banquet. He describes himself as a loyal countrymen that is a member of the Huang Pu Trading Association and believes that as a Chinese person, he needs to stick up for the country. We find out that his necklace is precious to him and has never left him before.

    Jin Xiu finally arrives at Zuo Zhens estate just in time to see Zuo Zhen leaving, so she tells the man to follow Zuo Zhens car. Zuo Zhen arrives at the Paramount Club where the banquet is held and he heads in. Jin Xiu tries to follow him but is prevented from entering and she loiters outside thinking of ways to bypass the doormen.

    In next scene, the influential Mr. Xiang that even Zuo Zhen pays respect to makes his appearance. He is enjoying the ambiance as jazz music plays in the background and his guests are waltzing on the dance floor. Mr. Xiang seems to be the typical businessmen where he has smiles all over his face, but his heart has a different motive. He is introduced to a french man, but before his friend even introduces, he already knew who that man is from his deductions and they shower each other with praises. We find out from that french man that Mr Xiang is the director of the Shanghais Business Association with an immense amount of wealth and also Shanghais top businessmen. He keeps a smile on his face but we finally see him frown when his men tell him that his brother Ying Dong has not arrived at the banquet yet. Ying Dong (Kimi Qiao), at first glance, seems to be a playboy as he is partying and drinking in the arms of several girls but as the girls leave we see that he is dejected and is missing someone dearly.

    Back at the Paramount, Zuo Zhen and Mr. Xiang is having some business talk and Mr. Xiang reminds him to always be careful.



    Meanwhile, Jin Xiu is still trying to find her way into the Paramount. The doormen discovers her tricks and pushes away, sending her falling into the arms of Ying Dong. Ying Dong introduces himself as a friend of Jin Xiu and asks the doormen to do him a favor and let them in because he knows Ying Dong. To his dismay, the doormen has no idea who Ying Dong is and claims they only follow the directions of Mr. Xiang. Angered that his own name doesnt have enough power, Ying Dong is about to start a fight but Jin Xiu stops him and he leaves, determined to bring her in. He finds a ladder in the bushes and helps her climb in through the window. When he gets in, he heads straight to his room and changes into a proper attire.

    Jin Xiu thinks he is stealing someone elses clothes and questions him, but he replies that he is only borrowing the outfit and will return it. Seeing that her clothes are not acceptable for the occasion, he brings out a cape and when she refuses to put it on (probably because she thinks he is stealing it), he personally puts it on for her.

    At the dance hall, she is weaving through the crowd looking around for Zuo Zhen but accidentally bumps into girl. In revenge, the girl trips Jin Xiu. She falls right into the arms of Zuo Zhen and her hands land right on his chest. The episode closes with Zuo Zhen frustratedly saying Why is it you again!



    Episode 2 Recap

    Just to clarify, some refer to Ying Dong respectfully as Ying Shao = Master Shao. Zuo Zhen is referred to as Er Ye = Second Master.

    We left off with Jin Xiu falling into the arms of Zuo Zhen after being tripped by a petty stranger. Zuo Zhen pushes her away criticizing her for not being able to stand upright properly. Jin Xiu snaps back, calling him a watch thief. Not knowing that his underling has stolen her watch, he dismisses her.

    Just then, the music starts and in enters a graceful and glamorous woman singing, captivating everyone at the banquet. Jin Xius eyes are fixated on her as she recognizes that the woman up on the stage is her lost sister, Ming Zhu (Lu Jia Rong), who she has been looking for. Unconsciously she calls out her name, and Ying Dong just so happens to hear it, reminding him of his heartbroken past. Ming Zhu is pulling her hand away from Ying Dongs grasp, apologizing but making it clear that she is not marrying him not because she doesnt love him, but because she loves another persons power and influence more.

    Back in the present, Ying Dong seems glum. Obviously, he has not gotten over her yet. The crowd is saying they are in luck to be able to see Ming Zhu sing since she hasnt performed in a very long time. Upon hearing his guests chatter, Mr Xiang is reminded of the old days where Ming Zhu had asked Mr. Xiang to dance and their love started to blossom then. This explains Ying Dongs rebellious attitude toward his brother. Both brothers had fallen in love with Ming Zhu but Ming Zhu chose the older brother because of his status and power.



    The song ends and Mr. Xiang escorts Ming Zhu off the stage. We see that the girl who tripped Jin Xiu is Ming Zhus attendant, Jing Ling. Mr Xiang and Ming Zhu is about to have a glass of wine but before she can take a sip, Ying Dong snatches the glass of wine from her hand and downs it in a single breath. Mr. Xiang questions why Ying Dong has arrived late to the banquet when he is the star of the night and he bitterly replies that people came to see his brother and not him. Before they could continue the conversation, the guests are asking for Mr. Xiang and he excuses himself. Ying Dong remarks that he is always being treated like a child. Seeing that Ying Dong isnt in a good mood, Ming Zhu tells him that his brother cares a lot about him but Ying Dong replies that since he is his brother, its normal for the older brother to worry for the young brother.

    Ming Zhu tries to tell him that there are a lot of other people who worry about him but Ying Dong snaps back asking her to name the person. Before she can reply, a man gets rowdy and causes a ruckus, claiming that he hasnt gotten any nice wine yet. Ying Dong in the mood for a fight, says that only dogs cant taste good wine, causing the man to get belligerent. Zuo Zhen steps into the game, thoroughly suppressing the man with just one arm. Ying Dong complains that Zuo Zhen stepped in too soon and he hasnt had enough fun yet. Mr. Xiang finally steps in to end the ruckus and tells the waiters to kick the customer out. The said customer signals his men to attack and men jump out of nowhere and it turns into a chaos. Ying Dongs first reaction is to protect Ming Zhu, quickly escorting her away from the fight.

    Seeing Ming Zhu leave, Jin Xiu runs after her but is knocked out unconscious by those who are fighting. Zuo Zhen saves her from being cut in the throat and even takes a blow for her when someone tries to attack her. He tells Shi Hao to look after her while he continues to control those men. A gun appears out of nowhere and is pointed straight at Zuo Zhen. Zuo Zhen, not even slightly scared, looks at the gun holder straight in the eyes, and says I bet you wont dare to shoot. While the man is shaking with the gun in his hands, Zuo Zhen grabs the gun and sends the man crashing into the tables. Completely defeated, all the men scrambles away.

    Long Si walks in applauding and says that that he was impressed with Zuo Zhens swift moves but then asks if they needed men to protect the club. (Gangs go around to businesses demanding owners to pay them protection fee and if they dont pay, the gangs then create problems making it very hard for them to continue with their business. Long Si is basically asking Mr. Xiang to pay him protection fee and he will have people protecting their business.) The hot-tempered Tang Hai starts to insult Long Si and Long Si says that since Zuo Zhen hasnt taught his underlings properly, he would need to teach Tang Hai a lesson. Zuo Zhen replies that if Long Si is willing to start a fight, then he is willing to reciprocate.



    Tang Hai then tosses Long Si blades that are on the ground and Zuo Zhen tells him to choose one. Knowing that he is not a match for Zuo Zhen, Long Si claims that this is a trap for him, which Zuo Zhen responds that he would fight him bare handed. Not wanting to be a coward, Long Si attacks but he is miles away from being Zuo Zhens match. Zuo Zhen easily obtains the knife from Long Sis hand and has him in a bind with the knife to his neck. Long Si surrenders asking Zuo Zhen to let him go but Zuo Zhen replies that he shouldnt live after working for the Japanese.

    When he is about to cut his throat, Mr. Xiang stops him, saying that the Paramount (the name of the club) doesnt see any blood and he doesnt want to break that rule. Zuo Zhen lets go of Long Si and Mr. Xiang tells him that he welcomes all guest to his banquet, but if people come to create problem, he wont let them go easily. Long Si politely replies that he is here to celebrate the return of Ying Shao and quickly leaves.

    Upstairs, Ying Dong has brought Ming Zhu into a safe area and is about to leave. Ming Zhu seems very worried for Ying Dong and holds onto him, telling him not to leave stating that its dangerous downstairs. Ying Dong feels awkward for being in a room with her. He makes the excuse that his brother is downstairs and proceeds to leave but Ming Zhu calls after him, Your brother has a lot of people protecting him. He is safe. But you who is impulsive should not go. Upon hearing this, Ying Dong get aggravated and reminds her that she is his sister-in-law and that she should only keep his brother in her heart. Before he can leave, she quickly tells him that since he has returned, she and his brother does not want him to leave. With a bitter smile on his face, he replies that he can tell the difference between those who are pretending and those who speak from their heart. She retorts that he knows she is being true to him but he tells her she was the one who made him realize that everything was fake.

    His eyes gets teary but he still puts on a strong front, saying that he would like to thank her for teaching him that he can survive very well without another person and that both of them are surviving pretty well without each other. He leaves after advising her not to tell others she is being sincere.

    Zuo Zhen walks out of Paramount carrying the unconscious Jin Xiu in his arms as Tang Hai tells him he should have taken the chance to kill Long Si. Shi Hao, on the other hand, notices that Mr. Xiang doesnt want to interfere in their matters and probably wont easily extend a helping hand to deal with Long Si.

    As Zuo Zhen takes Jin Xiu to the hotel, we see a cute scene where Jin Xius head falls on Zuo Zhens shoulder. Irritated, he pushes her head away but because it isnt strong enough, and she falls right back on his shoulder. This time he shoves her harder in the opposite direction and just before her head hits the other side of the car, he gently catches her and brings her back to rest on him.



    Zuo Zhen and Ying Dong are great pals and they are happily drinking wine together. Ying Dong complains that the wine is too bitter but Zuo Zhen tells him to forget about events in the past. He is referring to Ying Dong and Ming Zhus past. He continues to says that no matter how bitter a cup of wine something is, its just liquid. After gulping it down, just let it go. Dont think too much about it. Changing the topic, Ying Dong asks why such a busy person is personally looking out for him.

    Zuo Zhen says he has always treated his friends properly and its Ying Dong who has forgotten about him when he was in France. Ying Dong jokes saying he had to take care of his French girls because a girls heart changes quickly but a brothers heart stays the same. While Ying Dong expresses his thought about continuing to play while hes still young, Zuo Zhen reveals that he is giving him Lions Jungle Hotel, to celebrate his return to Shanghai. Apparently, Lions Jungle Hotel is Shanghais largest hotel and Mr. Xiang gave it to Zuo Zhen. Zuo Zhen then adds that he has sent a friend to the hotel and that he will pay for all her expenses but Ying Dong tells him not to worry about it. He tells Ying Dong not to let her know it is him who sent her there.

    In the middle of the night, Ying Dong and Ming Zhu, each separately in their own room, are looking at a black pearl earring. It seems like both of them have not forgotten about each other.

    Jin Xiu wakes up in the morning in a luxurious hotel room dressed in a frilly western styled dress. Xiao Lan, the maid, greets her and tells her that its Ying Shao who told them to look after her. On the other hand, Ying Shao finds it interesting that Zuo Zhen who he has never heard of having any female friend, has sent a girl to his hotel. He decides to check her out. Back at the room, Xiao Lan comments that Jin Xiu looks pretty and finds that she resembles Ming Zhu. Jin Xiu asks her to tell her more about Ming Zhu and finds out that she used to be a lounge dancer who accompanied men for a living. Ying Dong, later on, hired her to perform at Paramount and she later married Mr. Xiang and now lives in a luxurious house at 9 Fok Ying street. Jin Xiu repeats the street name to herself to commit it to memory.

    Seeing the door to Jin Xius room ajar, Ying Dong directly walks in. They are both surprised upon seeing each other and Jin Xiu proceeds to ask if it was him who brought her to this hotel. Ying Dong cleverly evades the questions, citing it doesnt matter who brought her to the hotel and proudly tells her to mention his name if she were to encounter any problems. He then stares at Jin Xiu and without taking his eyes off of her, he moves closer, only to find a bruise on her forehead, which he tells her he will send over the medication to treat it. She asks Ying Dong about Ming Zhu, after seeing him protect her yesterday and is shocked to find out that she is his sister-in-law. She tells him she is Ming Zhus sister, but upon hearing that she has been telling others that all of her relatives have passed away, Jin Xiu doesnt believe it and heads out to look for her sister.



    Zuo Zhen has just taken care of some business matters and escaped a trap set up by Long Si. He asks Shi Hao to find out exactly who is supporting Long Si. To Shao Hui, another one of his trusted helpers, he orders to have their exports checked carefully. As he leaves, Tang Hai gives him the pocket watch. Realizing why Jin Xiu had called him a watch thief, he gets angry with him.

    In the following scene, Long Si is angry at Wu Teng, the leader of the Japanese group that he is working with, for not taking actions to get rid of Zuo Zhen. Zuo Zhen has found out that he is working with the Japanese people and he doesnt want that news to get to Mr. Feng for fear of losing a chance to be the next director. Wu Teng tells him to eat first and brings out a dead fish, which he cuts up in front of Long Si, grossing him out.

    Wu Teng tells Long Si that the hardest part in making sashimi is to figure out each fishs bone structure. You need to select a suitable knife and cut the fish at its softest part to ensure that after youre finished cutting up all the sashimi, your fish is still alive. He connects this point to Zuo Zhen, saying getting rid of Zuo Zhen is exactly the same. You need to find his weak spot, and kill him with one blow.

    Long Si laughs at him, telling him that Zuo Zhen has no weak points. He has no women, no family, and nothing he is particularly fond of. However, he has already sent some professional assassins to kill Zuo Zhen and if they succeed, when Zuo Zhens people come to mess with him, he expects Wu Teng to provide him with artillery to fight back. He reminds Wu Teng that if he becomes the next Director of the Trading Association, it would also be easy for Wu Teng to do what he wants in Shanghai.



    Jin Xiu arrives at the entrance to Ming Zhus estate but the housekeeper doesnt let her in thinking that shes lying about being Ming Zhus sister. Jin Xiu causes a ruckus, making another attendant, Ying Di, to come out. Ying Di lets her in after believing that she isnt a swindler and takes her into the house. The girl who tripped her at the banquet, Jing Ling, comes out. Outraged that a stranger is let in house, she tries to force her out and but Ming Zhu comes out before Jin Xiu is taken away.

    Ming Zhu pretends that she doesnt know who Jin Xiu is and purposely shows off her wealth by asking her attendants to cook her an expensive meal. She kindly tells her to stay for dinner but emphasizes that she doesnt have time for her. Jin Xiu tells her she isnt here for a meal and Ming Zhu thinks that she wants money so she instructs her attendant, Jing Ling, to bring out money and preoccupies herself with the newspaper.

    As Jin Xiu talks about their childhood times and how she has been searching for her, Ming Zhu gets pissed off and tells her to stop talking. This makes Jin Xiu realize that Ming Zhu had recognized her all along but pretended not to know her. Jin Xiu continues telling her about how the whole family was killed causing Jing Ling to slap her for disobeying Ming Zhus words.

    Ming Zhu tells her that she wont feel sad about Jin Xius family dying, which shocks Jin Xiu. Jin Xiu pleads with her and tells her they are the only relatives left in this world. Becoming more agitated, Ming Zhu discloses about her hard and tragic life after she was kicked out of the Rong residence and grabs Jin Xiu by the shoulders, informing her that after her mother died, Rong Ming Zhu doesnt exist anymore.

    She throws money at her, demanding her to scram out of sight. Jin Xiu picks up the money and gives it back to her, muttering that she will stay in Shanghai and wait for her to accept her. Jin Xiu leaves wondering what to do next now that her only relative has rejected her. Jin Xiu has made another enemy, as Jing Ling vows to give her a bad time whenever she sees her.



    Episode 3 & 4 Recap

    Pending Release But here are pictures of that smoking scene. It does give new spin to the cliché hit-and-fall moment that usually results in accidental kisses and or awkward long stares.



    Anyways, as our producers predictably find every opportunity to showcase a shirtless Huang Xiao Ming, we get a scene of Jin Xiu replacing bandages on his wound because now shes his resident doctor now. LOL she could have walked around him with the bandaging but nope, obviously the producers would make us feel uncomfortable with the amount of closeness that they were at.

    Anyways there is another failed assassination attempt on him again, where these guys break in to kill him. One of the assassins, even though hes about to die, confesses up who he works for, aka Long Shao.

    Again Jin Xiu has some serious proprioception and balance problems because she falls twice onto Zuo Zhen. Once, where she falls into him and awkwardly kisses his chest because the producers like to push us over the edge. The second time she trips over a dead body into his arms.

    She must have suffered some serious damage to her cerebellum when she got knocked out in the ball. I would get it checked out.

    In this last scene, Zuo Zhen awkwardly claims Jin Xiu as his because she saved his life three times. She, like any normal human being, reacts with a WTF because that is possibly one of the most illogical slippery slopes in history.

    So far, this drama is still damn cheesy. Anyways, I do a lot of nitpicking in this post about the cheesiness but its actually not a bad drama. I like how its predictable so far I just hope the producers wont throw us a curveball too soon. I think Ill read the synopsis of the book that its based on to prepare my weak heart.




    Episode 5 RECAP

    The episode continues with Zuo Zhen asking Jin Xiu to become one of his people. Jin Xiu refuses saying his men all look aggressive and that nothing good happens when they are together (after all those assassination attempts gotta agree with her here). He notices her wound so he fixes her up, and she again makes the point on nothing good ever happens when they are together.

    Back at Lion Grove hotel, Ying Dong refuses to let Jin Xiu do hard work. This is only because if Zuo Zhen finds out he will be in trouble. Ying Dong rubs Jin Xius knee (at this point she thinks Ying Dong care about her but he is in fact under Zuo Zhens orders).

    Ming Zhu examines the bullet which was found at the burnt down Rong household. She finds it strange how everyone died on that one night. It appears she is also curious on who the killer may be.

    Maeda and his teacher has a sword fight and Maeda loses. His teacher tells him that if he were the enemy, Maeda wouldve died. Maedas response: he would not block the strike if his teacher meant to kill him because apparently the teacher once saved his life and also taught him sword fighting. Maeda says his life belongs to his teacher. Teacher praises him on finding the stopwatch. Here we find out the stopwatch contains a list of secret society people that is protecting china and teacher wants Maeda to eliminate them all.

    Jing Ling and Ming Zhu visit Zuo Zhen. Their conversation is nothing of importance except here Ming Zhu finds out it was Jin Xiu who treated Zuo Zhens bullet wound and that Zuo Zhen will not let anyone bother Jin Xiu. Ming Zhu claims to not know Jin Xiu very well. She then leaves her servant to look after Zuo Zhens wounds and attend to his needs (this is so she could place a spy in his household).

    Ming Zhus servant (Im not going to bother finding out her name because shes very annoying) has a crush on Zuo Zhen so she is happy to take care of him. They know they cant make a move on Jin Xiu because she has Zuo Zhens protection so they are waiting for an opportunity.

    Jin Xiu goes back to the church to see if she could find out more clues about her familys murderers. After gathering more information from the priest, she realizes that he was not the same priest as before. She knew for certain that the priest she spoke to was Chinese and not western. The priest also mentions he was not there on the day she was at the church.

    Maeda goes to a shoe cleaner, except the shoe cleaner has a secret identity and is actually part of the secret society. The shoe cleaner claims innocence, however, Maeda mentions that it is inscribed in the stopwatch and cold bloodily kills him.



    Long Si again tries to take Zuo Zhen down by getting the elder to side with him and using Jin Xiu against him (knowing that she is Zuo Zhens weakness). Long Si blames Jin Xiu for making Zuo Zhen lose the medicine (episode 1), this dude should really come out with better tactics. Zuo Zhen says it was an accident and Jin Xiu is not to blame and that if they want to take her life then they will also have to take his. Before the elder makes a decision, Jin Xiu tells the elder that she can help him even though the medicine is lost. Elder considers this and tells her that if she can really make him better, he can spare their lives.

    Ying Dong has a headache and Jin Xiu massages his head. He remembers that Ming Zhu used to use a similar method and he then thinks of Jin Xiu as Ming Zhu and almost kisses her but is then interrupted Awkward to say the least. (Ying Dong does not love Jin Xiu, he sees her as Ming Zhus shadow).

    Oh my god.. Abs Abs Now here comes the moment when Zuo Zhen proclaims his love Incorrectly of course.


    He DEMANDS (oh yes he did) Jin Xiu to be his woman! Oh my god. Im gushing! But she totally knocks him down. lol. She sarcastically asks if he has a fever, and he asks her isnt this what she wants? He says that she rescued him many times and that she looks after him every day and isnt that a sign of affection for a guy. And here comes the ouch part. She replies it was merely accidental that she happens to save him.



    He forcefully kisses her but our female lead tells him that she does not like him. Aww poor Zuo Zhen you got shot down hard.

    Ming Zhus servant, Jing Ling, having witnessed everything decides to force herself on Zuo Zhen. Ughhh Im so disgusted I cant even Ewww Im so unimpressed. Zuo Zhen is also unimpressed. He pushes her away Good on you Zuo Zhen!

    Jing Ling reports back to Ming Zhu. Their only worry is that if Zuo Zhen was to keep Jin Xiu beside him then kicking Jin Xiu out of Shanghai will be a lot harder. Her servant then tells Ming Zhu that someone has seen Jin Xiu on Ying Dongs lap.

    Jin Xiu gets kidnapped by Zuo Zhens men.

    A jealous Ming Zhu goes to see Ying Dong (come on girl you have no right to be jealous). Ming Zhu tells Ying Dong that she is envious of Jin Xiu because she can stay beside him all the time and she correctly guesses its because Jin Xiu looks a bit like her; he sees Jin Xiu as her shadow. She wants Jin Xiu out of Lion Grove hotel, out of Shanghai and to be gone tomorrow. Ying Dong refuses. He reminds her not to forget who she is and that she belongs to his older brother. He does imply that they can have an affair but if his older brother finds out that she still has feelings for him, then she will lose everything (shes clearly a gold digger).

    Jin Xiu gets thrown on top of Zuo Zhen, he forces himself onto her but stops when she tells him that even if all the men are dead in this world she still would not love him Ouch x 100. He tells her not to forget what she said as she wont get another chance with him.

    A drunken Ying Dong starts hitting on a police chiefs woman. I think he is acting so irrational here, and no you dont just go beating up random people and causing trouble. Jin Xiu witnesses Ying Dong being kidnapped. And Ming Zhu has been informed as well. Ying Dong is taken into the police station and locked up.



    Episode 6 RECAP
    Our troublesome puppy, Ying Dong, is tortured in prison by the guards. (I actually dont feel bad for him. He deserves it!) Punched in the face and slammed against the bars, he snaps ineffectually, How dare you hit my face! If my big brother learns of this, hes going to kill you! This specific guard doesnt care for their cheap money and continues to batter Ying Dong. Jin Xiu waits outside the entrance and even though Zuo Zhens car pauses nearby, he orders Shi Hao to drive on, remembering her words the other night when he forced himself on her and was denied. Dude. So wrong.

    After hearing that Mr. Xiang is away on a business trip, Jin Xiu has no choice but seeks help from the one man she promised not to ask for help from. I dont know how she does it, maybe there are fire wheels attached to her heels, but shes faster than Zuo Zhens car! He orders Shi Hao to keep driving straight even though shes right in the middle of the lane like a lunatic with her arms outstretched. He screams Halt! seconds before the bumper crashes her fragile knees.

    Zuo Zhen hops out of the car and grabs her collar, Do you not want to live anymore?!, but that somehow triggers pain in her knee (for sitting outside the police department all night) and she winces. Man, I think he needs to get his brain checked out too. She can walk but of course, he swoops down and picks her up bridal-style and carries her to his mansion and onto presumably his bed. He sternly repeats, Sit there. Dont move.

    He returns with a medical kit and starts dabbing medicine onto her wound while she flinches from the pain. You should take better care of yourself. Dont always get hurt and show up injured in front of people because that would only bring them trouble.

    Without meeting her eyes, he reminds her of her own words, You said you would never step foot inside this house, so what force on earth brought you here? She calls him petty, those words were said out of haste. Hes a man so why is he measuring every tiny bit of details with a girl. He stops pursuing that topic. Say, what is it?


    Her tone softens, Can you please save Ying Shao which is when his eyes flit up to her face and his hand intently dabs harder into the wound, rendering a scream out of her. You sought me out for this reason? In a long-winded fashion, she explains how she saw Ying Shao captured and taken to the police department and yet the guards denied it. Hurry and save him. Whether hes alive or dead, no one knowsIsnt he your friend, why arent you a bit concerned? He glares at her, Why is it related to you? Why are you in such urgency? Jin Xiu: Because hes also my friend. Of course, I have to save him. He wraps bandage around her knee while questioning her position in the matter. Why should almighty him agree to help a country girl like her? What could she possibly offer in return? I can do anything! I can do it! Unless it involves myself Dirty thoughts, Miss Virgin?



    Hes offended. You think I would accept any trash you throw my way? Who do you think you are? Yea, well, she doesnt think hes all that, even though shes here asking for his help. Then her stomach makes a grumble and Zuo Zhen orders Tang Hai to bring up some good dishes despite her protest, Now is not the time to eat!

    Next, Zuo Zhen and his two right-handed men strut into the police station like theyre bosses. He exchanges casual pleasantries with the main guy, Chief Liu, and we learn that theres a book with about a hundred names of the untouchable folks in society. Chief Liu believes that his people only captured two drunk men causing trouble this past night, no sight of Ying Shao at all. Zuo Zhen approaches him menacingly and speaks diplomatically about the consequences if something happens to his precious brother.
    Liu Yu, Chief Lius son, is called in and slapped by his father when he denies apprehending Ying Shao. Liu Yu explains his side of the story, its Ying Shaos fault for flirting with his dads mistress. Just when Chief Liu decides to allow the torture game of Ying Shao to last a bit longer, Ming Zhus entrance is announced. Opposite of Zuo Zhen, Ming Zhu comes bearing gift, though Chief Liu promises to let her scan their jail rooms, he makes sure his son store Ying Shao away first.

    Returning home to a squeaky Jin Xiu, Zuo Zhen finds his precious food untouched on the table and tells her to eat it. I dont know why shes arguing with him. Her stomach growled earlier so he sent her food! Just eat woman. Ughhhhhh. She has to finish the food before he tells her what happened, and cue this ungrateful brat poking the food with her chopstick like a 12-year old. Lord, have mercy on me!

    Arms tied, Ying Shaos torture continues with Liu Yus unending taunting he drags Ming Zhus name into the bag and thats a mistake already. If she serves and makes me happy, maybe Id let you go. Ying Dong spits in his face. Do you know what kind of man she likes? Here, come closer and Ill tell you. I cant believe the idiot actually inches closer and have his ear bitten in one wolf bite.


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