Li Er gives birth to her and Jing Ke’s baby! It sure seems like Ying Zheng and Li Er are stuck in a holding pattern in terms of their relationship. He continues to act as he always has, while she continues to distrust him and doesn’t really want anything to do with him. I don’t see their relationship moving forward without some major event occurring – maybe one of them or the child becomes seriously ill or injured, or perhaps Li Er overhears a conversation where Ying Zheng expresses how he feels about her …… who knows.
Now that Li Er’s given birth, we really see the intrigue and scheming in the inner palace ramp up and take center stage. Even though Li Er doesn’t want to get involved in such matters, she has no choice because the other occupants in the inner palace already have their knives out for her. Not only does she have herself to worry about, but she also has a child she needs to take care of and protect as well. I hope she learns very quickly because even though Ying Zheng loves her and wants to take care of her, he’s not always going to be around.
Ge Nie sees that Jing Ke is barely holding it together and decides to tell him some truths about who his Master (Li Er’s grandfather) really is. Jing Ke may have thought of his Master as a feeble old man, but in fact, his Master’s talent had been as great as Ge Nie. In his younger days, his Master was easily able to subdue and overcome any adversary and the people had even given him the nickname ‘Blood Shadow’, because his attacks went unnoticed until they were done and there was only blood left. It was only when his Master felt that he had shed too much blood and the Huluo sword technique was too powerful that he stopped using it and hid it away. Ge Nie says that as much as Jing Ke wants to find his martial arts sister, his first priority should be to locate the sword technique, only then will he be able to fulfill the hopes that his Master had for him.
As much as I understand how miserable Jing Ke is without Li Er, I’m only going to give this moping one or two more episodes and then I’ll be ready to move on and see Jing Ke’s next phase of development. Historically, Jing Ke committed the most well known attempt to assassinate Ying Zheng, so I hope that we transition into Jing Ke’s journey of finding the Huluo sword technique, training, and finally making his attempt to assassinate Ying Zheng. I hope what Ge Nie has told him snaps him out of his depression and he realizes that there is a much bigger picture than his love for Li Er. Even Li Er felt that Jing Ke had great things that he was meant to accomplish, and that’s why it was so important for her to save his life.
Li Er is giving birth to her and Jing Ke’s baby! This seems like a time jump so I’ll just assume that there was nothing interesting or eventful that happened from where episode 10 ended. Things probably continued on as they were with Ying Zheng visiting Li Er on a regular basis. Ying Zheng’s threats must’ve been severe enough that no one in the palace tried to harm Li Er and her baby again.
Ying Zheng is present for the birth, and it appears that he’s been there all night because Li Zhong asks him to return to his residence to rest. Ying Zheng tells him no, he will continue to wait there, because “he has been waiting so many years for her, and what is a little more time?”. Aww. Li Er finally delivers her baby, and the physician reports that Li Er delivered a son and both mother and child are well. The physician asks Ying Zheng if he wants to see the child, and he replies that there’s no need.
Ying Zheng goes to see Li Er, and she thanks him for letting her give birth to experience the joy and tears of becoming a mother for the first time. How much Ying Zheng must wish that Li Er’s first child is his. Li Er says that she’s come up with a name for the baby – Tian Ming (meaning daybreak/dawn). Cute. When Li Er asks her maid to bring over her baby so she can see him, Ying Zheng interrupts and dismisses the maid. Li Er starts to panic as she assumes that Ying Zheng is going to take her baby from her and voice shaking, asks him if he’s planning to take Tian Ming away. To have her calm down, Ying Zheng tells Li Er that she will always be able to see her baby. He tells her to rest well and leaves, as Li Er thinks to herself that she won’t be able to live if anything happens to her son.
I think that it was enormously difficult for Ying Zheng to allow Li Er’s child to stay in the palace, because he will always be a symbol of the relationship Li Er had with Jing Ke. At the same time, I think Ying Zheng thought it through and realizes that he will completely lose Li Er and any chance of her coming to love him if he sends her child away. Besides, even though the child is not biologically his, now that Li Er has delivered a son, it helps Ying Zheng’s case to name Li Er as Queen in the future.
Ying Zheng orders Li Zhong to have everyone present at Li Er’s delivery taken care of (everyone knows what that means). When Li Zhong asks him if he’s worried about rumors regarding the new prince, Ying Zheng says he doesn’t have to explain his orders. Dude, don’t question Ying Zheng. That’s a good way to get yourself killed.
Madam Chu is furious that Li Er has delivered a son, and is determined to complain to the Grand Dowager so they can scheme to suppress Li Er and keep her power from increasing in the inner palace. Meanwhile, Madam Min is thrilled that Li Er gave birth safely. She also enjoys how angry Madam Chu must be. However, she says that in the inner palace, the scheming is endless and Li Er is not safe. Madam Chu and Grand Dowager will come up with ways to make Li Er’s life miserable because she is a obstacle in their path.
Madam Min is pretty interesting to me and I’ve been trying to figure her out. It sure seems like she was glad that Li Er delivered her baby safely, but I wonder if that’s because she truly considers herself and Li Er to be friends, or because it makes the Grand Dowager and Madam Chu so upset. I wonder if she is scheming to have Li Er and Grand Dowager/Madam Chu fight each other so she can take control in the end.
Han Shen has finally found an opportunity to visit Li Er’s residence one evening. Because he’s wearing a mask that covers his face, Li Er mistakes him for an intruder and calls for her palace maids and guards. When she finds out it’s her martial arts brother, she sends the maids and guards away by saying that she made a mistake. Han Shen believes that Li Er’s baby is Ying Zheng’s, and makes a move to kill him when Li Er tells him the truth that he’s her and Jing Ke’s child. Baby is so adorable! In a flashback, we see that Han Shen also had feelings for Li Er and was going to confess his feelings to her when Li Er awkwardly changed the subject. Han Shen tells Li Er that he entered the palace to look for her after he saw her wanted poster and thought she might’ve been taken to Xianyang City. He found out that Li Er had become a royal consort and was having a child while he was working as a palace guard.
Ying Zheng arrives then, and Li Er gives him a formal greeting. I wish they had showed us when and why she started greeting him formally, when before she would completely ignore him. Is it because she now has a child and thinks she better observe the palace formalities?
He asks her what happened, and she tells him she has mistaken a cat for an assassin. He asks her why she seems so sad if that was all, and she tells him that she misses home. Ying Zheng tells her that the palace is now her home, and reaches out his hand to touch her face. Li Zhong ducks his head so he doesn’t see, lol. When Li Er doesn’t look at him, he grabs her face and makes her look at him. Forceful as usual.
The King of Zhao Zhao Yan goes to visit Ying Zheng at royal court. Ying Zheng hints that he wants Zhao to attack the state of Yan, but Zhao Yan says that his subjects are resistant to the idea and want Zhao to ally itself with the other states against Qin. He says for Ying Zheng’s benefit that such an alliance would make no sense. Ying Zheng says he can help Zhao be the reasonable one. Not really sure what he means.
The Grand Dowager is holding a banquet, which Li Er attends even though she is not fully recovered yet. She wouldn’t have gone before, but she is going now for her son. Using the excuse that Li Er must familiarize herself with the palace formalities now she is a mother to a prince, the Grand Dowager tasks Li Er with recopying the scrolls regarding court etiquette, poems, music, etc. There are a ton of scrolls to copy, and Li Er is expected to use a pencil knife to do the copying. Madam Chu is there and looks delighted. Ugh. I hate these two. Poor Li Er.
When Ying Zheng visits Li Er the next morning and finds out that Li Er never returned from visiting the Grand Dowager the previous evening. He summons Li Zhong (in case there’s a fight to save Li Er!) and sets out for Huayang Palace immediately. Li Er has been copying the scrolls all night, and needs to stop when she cuts herself. Grand Dowager uses the break as an excuse to accuse Li Er of not following directions and has her maid slap Li Er and her maid. WTF. Ying Zheng arrives to take Li Er back to her residence, and when she faints from exhaustion, he carries her back in his arms. Aww.
Meanwhile, Madam Chu and her two companion consorts are thrilled and gloating that the Grand Dowager assigned Li Er such a difficult task. I can’t stand them. Madam Min arrives and makes it known that Ying Zheng personally went to save Li Er, so it should be obvious who the most favored royal consort is. Having made her announcement, Madam Min takes her leave. Madam Chu is so upset that she has smoke coming out of her ears as she declares that she will kill anyone who lets Madam Min into her palace again. HA!
Thanks everyone for reading!
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