Princess Agents Episode 7-8
Due to a secret ailment that weakens him for a short period of time very year, Wen Huai is forced to go into a lockdown while his enemies try to use this perfect opportunity to kill him. A bit suspicious when her nemesis, Jin Zhu (another maid who is a spy for the villain, also the one who framed the heroine’s older brother) hands her a jade statue declaring that it is to be delivered to Wen Huai to help with his recovery, Chu Qiao nonetheless obediently holds the status as she waits for an audience with her master. Smiling with satisfaction that the jade statue would soon lead to Wen Huai’s demise, Jin Zhu hopes that Chu Qiao would have to hold the statue for an extended period of time since it will also kill anyone that doesn’t have “internal force” (straight translation from Chinese that describes the necessary force that those who knows how to fight would have.)
Overwhelmed with the flashbacks of a woman (her mother) training her to fight at a young age, Chu Qiao is visibly suffering from the icy influence of the jade statue but manages to break into Wen Huai’s room when she hears our hero’s bird calling for help. Stumbling into the room to see Wen Huai surrounded by poisonous snakes, Chu Qiao grabs Wen Huai’s sword from him and after a pause (where both of the leads know that Chu Qiao is remembering the moment her brother died at Wen Huai’s hand), Chu Qiao resolutely saves Wen Huai’s life.
Looking at Chu Qiao’s pale face after she saves his life then promptly faints in his arms, Wen Huai’s expression turns grave when the doctor informs him that Chu Qiao’s has an astounding amount of internal force in her body that has been sealed up but that same force is threatening to burn her to death if someone doesn’t help her. Going against his subordinate’s strong opposition, Wen Huai ignores the harm to his own body and saves Chu Qiao.
Clueless that Wen Huai has gone temporarily blind because of saving her, Chu Qiao puts on her best acting face and protests her eternal loyalty when Wen Huai dryly comments on her intention on killing him. Knowing full well that the poisonous snakes were the works of one of her little sister (to avenge the older brother’s death), Chu Qiao skillfully makes Jin Zhu the scapegoat…even if Wen Huai wasn’t fooled at all.
Squeal! I love the undercurrent between our two leads. Our hero is obviously starting to care…no matter how cold and calculating he tries to appear. As for our heroine… I don’t think romance is on her mind yet but she is getting comfortable enough with Wen Huai to start pushing his buttons from time to time.
Princess Agents Episode 9-10
Much relieved when his grandfather finally wakes up from a coma (the grandfather didn’t die because the hero was able to give him some miracle pill), Wen Yue’s delight quickly turns to dismay when his grandfather angrily accuses him of falling in love with our heroine, a common slave. Not appeased even after Wen Yue declares that he is only interested in Chu Qiao because of her potential to be of a great use to them, Grandfather Yu forbids Wen Yue from rescuing our heroine, who has fallen into the hands of the villain, Yu Wen Huai. Meekly accepting his grandfather’s order on the surface, Wen Yue tells his man to secretly send a message to Yan Xun (male second lead) to go rescue Chu Qiao.
Calm and calculating even knowing that Wen Haui had kidnapped her sister to lure her into a death trap, Chu Qiao skillfully tries to find a way to survive while driving a wedge of distrust between Wen Huai and his once useful pawn Jin Zhu (heroine’s nemesis). Becoming increasingly agitated as he is convinced by Chu Qiao’s words that Jin Zhu is no longer loyal to him, Wen Haui is determined to get rid of both women but fortunately, Yan Xun arrives in time to save our Chu Qiao.
Favorite scene: Receiving word of Jin Zhu’s death, Wen Yue barges into Chu Qiao’s room knowing full well that she probably had a hand in her nemesis’ death. Narrowing his eye with suspicion when Chu Qiao pretends to be too ill to get out of bed, Wen Yue flung open the bed cover only to turn sharply away in embarrassment once he sees our heroine dressed only in her undergarments.
After being informed of Chu Qiao’s mystifying internal force, Wen Yue begins to dig around for his maid’s true identity but the only possible candidate is a woman that died two years ago. Prodding Chu Qiao for any clues of her real identity, Wen Yue finds out that our heroine has no memories of her past.
Still committed to training Chu Qiao into a sharp weapon for his use, especially after his grandfather relents on her presence, Wen Yue continues to work with Chu Qiao personally. Understanding perfectly what role she should play in Wen Yue’s eyes, Chu Qiao is the ideal student and soaks up everything Wen Yue has to teach her. Unbeknownst to our two leads, Grandfather Yu’s change of attitude towards Chu Qiao was not without reason. Furious to realize that one of his own family members is in cahoots with the enemy nation, Grandfather Yu has chosen Chu Qiao as the person to get rid of the family shame in secret…which also means killing Chu Qiao after she accomplishes the mission in order to make sure the shameful secret dies with her. (The person Grandfather Yu wants to kill is Wen Huai’s grandfather, the same perverted old man that killed all those maids, including Chu Qiao’s older sister.)
Undaunted by Wen Yue’s continual refusal to give Chu Qiao to him, Yan Xun is too busy staring at Chu Qiao during a party to notice that his overt adoration has just added another enemy to our heroine’s life. Harboring a rather obvious one sided crush on Yan Xun, Princess Yuan Chun is filled with jealousy as she watches her crush never taking his eyes off Chu Qiao. Apparently also harboring a hopeless crush on Princess Yuan Chun himself, Wen Huai promises the princess to get rid of everyone that makes her unhappy. (The princess is actually still quite innocent at this point. Extremely spoiled but not a villain…yet.)
Ninja’s Second Impression:
I am loving this one! One thing I wished the novel had was a whole lot more interaction between the two leads, so it was really nice to see the TV version did exactly that! In the novel, one could tell the heroine was special to the hero from the beginning but not really romantically especially since the heroine was only supposed to be like 8 (I think?). With the TV version starting off with the heroine already an adult, there was definitely a whole lot more delicious opportunities for the two leads’ relationship.
Now that our two leads’ relationship has some foundation, it looks like the writer will start to turn the focus back on the male second lead. In the novel, Yan Xun’s character really was almost like the hero. In fact, if one measure who is the hero by how much plot time is spent on a character than Yan Xun would definitely be the hero in this case. As the kind of viewer who in 90% of cases likes her hero/heroine to have the most screen time so as to leave no confusion who is really the lead here, I am glad at least the screenwriter is changing the plot enough to give Wen Yue a fair share of the story.
The book did a good job portraying the deep love the two leads eventually had for each other but I felt it really lacked the awesome details the TV show has been able to add along the way. For example: Wen Yue’s awareness of Chu Qiao in episode 8 when she was wiping something off his chest, Wen Yue subsequently keeping the handkerchief Chu Qiao used on him, the slight expression of frustration when both Yan Xun and Princess Yuan Chun’s brother wanted him to give them Chu Qiao, Chu Qiao’s increasing tendency to push Wen Yue’ buttons…then getting away with it.
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