Waiting with Yuan Ling while Elder Mo is doing what he can to treat the poison in Qing Chen’s body, 12th Prince hides his surprise when Yuan Ling suddenly asks if he believes there could be two space in time where another one’s self could exist. Flustered, 12th Prince quickly distracts Yuan Ling by saying they should go check on Qing Chen.
Faced with an irritated Qing Chen who chides him for disregarding his own safety and rushing into the kill spell with her, Yuan Ling asks in return “Let me ask you a question. If I was in the same situation, would you sit idly by and do nothing?” Breaking into a smile when Qing Chen instinctively replies “Of course not!”, Yuan Ling retorts “Then think of how I felt. In that situation, how could I not worry.” Listing off the many things Qing Chen had done for him, Yuan Ling asks “Didn’t you do all that for me?” Protesting, Qing Chen replies “You think too highly of me. I don’t have the ability to create miracles!” Taking Qing Chen’s hand, Yuan Ling smiles “Isn’t that sort of thing elemental for someone who is going to be my wife?” Her smile waning at Yuan Ling’s words, Qing Chen sighs as she remembers that taking over Luan Fei’s position means she can’t get married until age 25 unless the
Protesting, Qing Chen replies “You think too highly of me. I don’t have the ability to create miracles!” Taking Qing Chen’s hand, Yuan Ling smiles “Isn’t that sort of thing elemental for someone who is going to be my wife?” Her smile waning at Yuan Ling’s words, Qing Chen sighs as she remembers that taking over Luan Fei’s position means she can’t get married until age 25 unless the emperor marries her to someone of his choosing before then. Admitting that the emperor is trying to hold Qing Chen hostage as a way to control him, Yuan Ling promises “This time, I am willing to play the game against him.” Worried, Qing Chen warns “Entering into the game is fine, but if it ever gets too dangerous then promise me that you will save yourself first. Will you promise me?” Giving Qing Chen one of his heart melting smile, Yuan Ling counters “You are the one that’s hurt, so you should be the one promising me that before you recover fully you won’t worry anymore.”
Holding a sleeping Qing Chen in his arms, Yuan Ling silently says to himself “I won’t force you to tell me what you don’t want to reveal. But after seeing what I saw, real or not, from this point on, I will personally protect you and those you cherish.”
Worried about Qing Chen but knowing he is not the one she wants by her side, Yuan Zhan could only stare forlornly at Qing Chen’s medical center as he mutters “Are you getting better? With 4th brother taking care of you…you must’ve recovered by now.”
Having found out Qing Chen’s sudden change in status, a hopeful Princess Duo Xia pays Yuan Zhen a visit and asks if this is a signal that the emperor has decided to go ahead with their political alliance. Counseling Duo Xia to not make the emperor feel like he is backed into the corner, Yuan Zhen nonetheless agrees that it is probably safe for Duo Xia to push the emperor a bit. Aware of Yuan Zhen’s feelings for Qing Chen, Duo Xia suggests that this turn of the event might work to his benefit. Perpetually calm and wise, Yuan Zhen replies “If someone’s heart is elsewhere then even if you forcefully make them stay by your side, it wouldn’t necessarily be a good thing.” Voicing the question maybe even Yuan Zhen himself doesn’t dare to ask yet, Duo Xia says “If the marriage alliance really happens…will you ask the emperor to give Qing Chen to you as your Princess Consort?” Too conflicted to give Duo Xia an answer, Yuan Zhen remains silent as his expression turns to one of confusion. Voicing the question maybe even Yuan Zhen himself doesn’t dare to ask yet, Duo Xia says “If the marriage alliance really happens…will you ask the emperor to give Qing Chen to you as your Princess Consort?” Too conflicted to give Duo Xia an answer, Yuan Zhen remains silent as his expression turns to one of confusion.
Determined to figure out if his visions were real or not, Yuan Ling visits Elder Tao Yao and is horrified when she admits that according to everything he said, Qing Chen most likely opened the time portal…meaning “the life force of the one that opens the portal will continue to decrease. If the nine stones are not returned to their positions in time, then the one that opened the portal will be cast into eternal darkness, their soul torn into nothingness. We just don’t know how much time is left for Qing Chen…”
Desperate now to do everything he can to protect Qing Chen…this time around, Yuan Ling convinces Elder Tao Yao that they need to figure out what happened in the other time line to cause Qing Chen to open the time portal. Explaining to Yuan Ling that since he and Qing Chen are the two stars, with the sorcerer’s stones’ help, Yuan Ling would be able to look into Qing Chen’s past memories. With a determined expression, Yuan Ling promises to trick Qing Chen into coming to Mingyi Tower.
Unable to hold back his feelings for Ming Yan anymore, 12th Prince confesses to 11th Prince that he is in love with a guard…a man. After getting over his initial shock, the ever supportive 11th Prince encourages his youngest brother to find out if his love interest also returns his feelings so he could stop agonizing if he is just having a one-sided crush.
Fast forwarding over the scenes between the emperor and our two male leads. Here is a summary of what happened out of that: 1. The emperor sends Yuan Zhan on a mission to make sure all the relief money he sent to the flood areas ALL make it to the refugees instead of into the pocket of the rich powerful elites. 2. Accepting the assignment, Yuan Zhan convinces the emperor to grant him the authority to fire corrupted officials. 3. Emperor meets with Yuan Ling and is furious that instead of capitulating to him, Yuan Ling is obviously staying low only to be ready to fight another day for Qing Chen. At the end of the day, the emperor just wants everyone, especially his sons to be fully aware that HE is their ultimate ruler. In this week’s episodes, the emperor repeatedly declared “It is MY throne. I will give it to whom I will. And because I was the one that gave then I can always take it back.”
The much awaited scene of 12th Prince and Ming Yan finally happens! Barging into Ming Yan’s room while she is taking a bath, our clueless 12th Prince yelps in surprise when he finally discovers Ming Yan’s real gender.
Scrambling from Ming Yan’s room after promising he would never reveal what happened that night, 12th Prince, who is sporting two glorious black eyes, giggles as he thinks “I can’t believe she is a woman! An exceptional beauty at that!”
Thoroughly amused when a very shy 12th Prince whispers “Ming Yan…she is a girl!”, Qing Chen teases “Hmm…what to do? Instead of the serious business you speak of, I am more interested in how you found out she is a girl!”
Belatedly realizing from Qing Chen’s expression that she has always known Ming Yan’s gender, a huffy 12th Prince accuses “You knew! You were waiting for me to make a fool of myself!” Equally huffy, Qing Chen fights back by asking “Who are you to complain when you took advantage of Ming Yan! Plus, did you ask me?! Did you?!” Our heroine is forced to be so serious due to her circumstance but I love it when she has a moment to be her real fun self once in a while.
Resigned that he can’t win an argument with Qing Chen, 12th Prince turns serious and talks to her about his worry for Ming Yan’s safety. Agreeing with 12th Prince’s concerns, Qing Chen smiles approvingly when 12th Prince promises to come up with a way to get Ming Yan out of the palace.
Ture to his promise, when 12th Prince accidentally breaks his own jade pendant, he promptly blames it on Ming Yan and uses the opportunity to convince the emperor to banish her from the palace. Not surprised when Elder Mo shows up asking her to figure out a way to help poor frustrated Ming Yan to stay in the palace, Qing Chen explains 12th Prince’s true intention to Elder Mo but then asks him to keep what she said a secret so Ming Yan would not feel guilty.
With the Lian Army (the enemy nation to both Yuan Ling’s and Duo Xia’s country) threatening to attack if the emperor dared to carry out the marriage alliance, Princess Duo Xia presses the emperor for his answer on her marriage but the emperor just tells her that he will have an answer for her soon. Keeping his own thoughts to himself so that even his sons is clueless to what he is planning, the emperor seems determined to toy with everyone as pawns on his chess board.
Before leaving on his assignment to oversee the flood crisis, Yuan Zhan visits his mother who has been released from banishment by the emperor. Still the same woman who cares for nothing but pushing her family to ultimate power and glory, Imperial Concubine Yin’s sole concern is that her son needs to get rid of Yuan Ling as soon as possible so the throne will be his. Frustrated by his mother’s stubborn blindness to everything but self interest, Yuan Zhen tries to explain that without Yuan Ling the country would be defenseless against their neighboring enemy that is ready to attack the moment they see an opportunity. Deaf to Yuan Zhen’s heartfelt plea for her to place the welfare of the country above her own for once, Imperial Concubine Yin expresses her disappointment in having a son who cares so much about the common good. I guess Yuan Zhen’s mother is actually a perfect wife for the emperor, since neither seems to care much about the country as long as they could rule over it…even if it means ruling over a ruined country. At the end of this episode, Yuan Zhen is furious when he sees how much the refugees had suffered because of the corrupted officials and vows to start cleaning them out…even those that are in his family lineage.
Dragged by Yuan Ling to Mingyi Tower on the pretense of helping her to heal some more, an unsuspecting Qing Chen passes out in the middle of imagining with Yuan Ling how lovely it would be to have their children running around the flowers he will plant. Successfully entering into Qing Chen’s memory, a pale faced Yuan Ling slumps over the moment he is disengaged from Qing Chen’s mind. Concerned, Elder Tao Yao urgently asks “What happened exactly?” Too stunned by what he saw, a shaken Yuan Ling could only mutter “Father…7th brother…Prime Minister Feng.”
Holding a still unconscious Qing Chen, Yuan Ling watches with dismay as a flower suddenly flies out of Qing Chen’s body and sheds a petal. Knowing exactly what the flower is now, Yuan Ling mutters “I see, you don’t have much time left.” Pressing his face tightly against Qing Chen’s, Yuan Ling’s mind is flooded with everything Qing Chen had done and said since he met her (in this current time line).With eyes red with emotion, Yuan Ling whispers “For me, you went to investigate the Feng household. You entered Yuan Zhan’s home, became Prime Minister Feng’s daughter. For me, you got rid of various dangerous. You even almost lost your life a few times. I was totally clueless and made it difficult for you. And now, you are facing the fate of having your soul torn into nothingness but I can do nothing but watch. I am sorry, I am sorry.” I am not sure why a petal fell in this scene. As far as I can tell, no one important died in this episode. Although 12th Prince did warn Qing Chen before that no one could discover her real identity so maybe Yuan Ling finding out the truth was the reason for the petal falling. The fact that 12th Prince also was hurt at the same time the petal fell seems to support that theory.
Quickly forcing his expression of agony into a gentle smile the moment Qing Chen wakes up, Yuan Ling chides Qing Chen for speaking nonsense when she asks “What’s wrong? Am I so sick I am about to die?” Still weak, Qing Chen tells Yuan Ling “It feels like I had a dream.” Out of Qing Chen’s sight, Yuan Ling keeps his voice reassuring even if his expression belies the sorrow in his heart, “It’s okay. It was just a dream. I am here.” Still unsettled, Qing Chen confesses “But I am afraid. I am afraid that no matter how much I try, I can’t shake off that nightmare.” Barely able to keep his emotion in check, Yuan Ling assures Qing Chen “I told you, it was just a dream. As long as I am here, it will never become reality.” SOB!
Moved by Yuan Ling’s love for Qing Chen, Elder Tao Yao puts Qing Chen’s hand in Yuan Ling’s as she formally tells our hero that she is entrusting Qing Chen in his care. Knowing exactly the seriousness of Elder Tao Yao’s charge, Yuan Ling promises to not disappoint her.
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