After a drunk Zhan Feng angrily proclaims that Tang Xin cannot expect a Crown Prince to change for a simple fishing village girl, Tang Xin breaks off their engagement in a letter and heads back to her fishing village. Will Zhan Feng be able to win back her heart?
These few episodes were really swoony for me!
The episode starts with Tang Xin enjoying a bun on her journey home, when she senses a presence.
The presence turns out to be Su Mo Mo! She tells Tang Xin that her responsibility in training Tang Xin to be the Crown Prince's Imperial Concubine has not ended even though Tang Xin insists she has broken up with Zhan Feng. Su Mo Mo tells her that until the Empress Dowager changes her command, Su Mo Mo must follow Tang Xin.
As night falls, Tang Xin and Su Mo Mo stays in an abandoned hut. When Tang Xin returns, she sees that Su Po Po has unpacked beautiful arrangements for their sleep. Tang Xin is surprised and asks what magic bag is Su Mo Mo carrying. Su Mo Mo explains that it is the duty of the Crown Prince Imperial Concubine to be able to handle difficult situations and the household arrangements in times of political turmoil so that the Emperor and Crown Prince can handle state matters at ease.
Tang Xin marvels that the Crown Prince Imperial Concubine must be an amazing woman... then stops herself and says it has nothing to do with her anyway.
Tang Xin beams as she returns to her fishing village, though she is surprised when many villagers come up to her.
One by one they tell her that they are apologising to Tang Xin on Zhan Feng's behalf. They all ask her to forgive Zhan Feng who is sincerely sorry.
Tang Xin fumes when she realises that Zhan Feng not only followed her back to the fishing village, he arrived first!
We gather at Tang Xin's relative's coffee place. A crowd has gathered outside claiming that they have apologised to Tang Xin on Zhan Feng's behalf and are here to collect the one gold ingot reward in exchange!
Zhan Feng sighs as he wonders what he must do to get Tang Xin to smile at him again.
Tang Xin arrives and furiously exclaims that Zhan Feng is no Gentleman, but the Crown Prince!
Zhan Feng is happy to see Tang Xin arrive then gives this deadpanned look to show his mild exasperation at Tang Xin's big mouth. They start to exchange their usual cheeky banter with each other - Tang Xin telling Zhan Feng to go away.
The crowd of course disbelieved Tang Xin, but when Zhan Feng accidentally drops his jade symbol that proves he is the Crown Prince. The crowd all falls down to their knees. Tang Xin refuses to and Tang Xin's aunt cries in alarm, "Do you want to get your head chopped off?" Zhan Feng smiles that Tang Xin's act was not intentional.
Zhan Feng's smile widens at Tang Xin as he tells her that to reveal his identity as the Crown Prince is a crime that can take her life. Tang Xin gasps and Zhan Feng adds that, "Your life is now mine."
Zhan Feng lifts up Tang Xin's hand to the crowd and exclaims that he is going to bring back Tang Xin to the Palace to marry. Tang Xin storms off in annoyance (don't you think for a prideful Zhan Feng he gives Tang Xin a lot of leeway?).
When Tang Xin returns home, she is annoyed to find Zhan Feng there. She tells him to leave because she wants to sleep. Zhan Feng says that he came to the fishing village for her, so of course he plans to stay here. The relatives, alarmed at Tang Xin's behaviour, tells Zhan Feng he can stay at their residence. Tang Xin brings Zhan Feng to the storeroom where they keep the firewood.
She smiles pleased at herself when Zhan Feng agrees to stay in the storeroom for the night.
The next morning, the relatives prepare a huge feast for breakfast for Zhan Feng. Zhan Feng asks Tang Xin to eat the breakfast with him and she tells him that she is only a common citizen and does not eat such rich food for breakfast.
Later in the day, Tang Xin returns home to see Zhan Feng's personal eunuch instructing people to carry grand furniture to her house.
She goes in and is stunned at the rapid transformation of the storeroom.
She tells all of them to stop but they don't listen. She bursts into tears as she exclaims, "Are your all going to groom him into a big fat person to bully me?"
She starts to break the vases in the room and brings out an expensive wooden chair to throw down. At this moment, Zhan Feng arrives and watches as she throws down the wooden chair at him. Zhan Feng calls her a mad woman and tells her, "You either knock me to death with the objects or you forgive me!"
Tang Xin says she knows him that is why she thinks his heart differs from his words. Zhan Feng smiles and tells Tang Xin it is because she knows him which is why he came all the way from the capital for her. Zhan Feng asks Tang Xin if she cannot see his sincerity.
Tang Xin blushes and runs away.
After a while, she stops and wonders if Zhan Feng is tricking her with his honeyed words again. Can she really believe him one more time?
As she walks, she meets the villager again...
They are all in full praise of Zhan Feng - one says he physically fixed his cart for him, another says although Zhan Feng is the Crown Prince, he is without airs and has been coming to his house to fetch water for himself.
Tang Xin pauses and asks if they have seen Zhan Feng... they tell her he is at the coffeeshop resting... and she finds Zhan Feng again in a gaggle of girls!
She fumes in angry silence as she hears the girls insulting and criticising her while telling Zhan Feng to pick them instead to be his Imperial Concubine.
He asks them if they have ever been in love? If they know what is true love? He tells them that true love is not caring about the person's flaws, but whether they want to eat roast chicken or buns tonight (only applicable to his dear Tang Xin haha).
After a while, Tang Xin walks off in deep thought with a quiet smile on her face.
Back at home, Tang Xin tells Su Mo Mo that while Zhan Feng is flirtatious, she doesn't dislike him. At least, he knows what real love is - although she doesn't know it yet, she likes it. Su Mo Mo tells her that the Crown Prince is willing to adapt for her and accept her everything, maybe Tang Xin can change too and try and accept the Crown Prince or even change him.
Su Mo Mo asks Tang Xin if she wants to learn how to survive in the palace - to live harmoniously and freely in the palace, while having to share her husband with many women. Tang Xin smiles and finally agrees.
Zhan Feng returns and smiles to see that Tang Xin is cleaning his residence. He carries her up and tells her that they need to leave. Something has happened in the Capital!
Comment: I don't think the fundamental conflict between Tang Xin and Zhan Feng is fully resolved, but I think that both of them made a step towards working towards a future together. Zhan Feng is willing to put down his pride as a Crown Prince (where necessary) and promises Tang Xin the sincerity in his heart. At the end of the day, it's whether this is enough for Tang Xin.
The step at the end where Tang Xin is cleaning Zhan Feng's residence on her knees may seem to be a step backwards (haha), but the ideal female role in those times is still one that takes care of the household chores so I think the drama is trying to show Tang Xin accepting her role as one of supporting Zhan Feng. And, I like that Zhan Feng is the one who takes her hand and brings her up, because while enjoying the traditional male dominant structure, he has also time and time again shown himself to be surprisingly modern and liking Tang Xin precisely because she is uniquely herself.
The next recap will finally be the last! Woohoo!