This just might be an abbreviated recap with lots of commentary from me… At least this episode saw some growth in Jing Jing’s character and Ai Xing’s beginning to realize maybe she was wrong when she said she’s only ever loved money and nothing else.
Step Ten: Money is just paper with numbers printed on it.
The above quote is very true in a sense. However, economists love to tell you about just how that little piece of paper with numbers on it comes into being. It’s very confusing when they talk about gold, the national treasury, and how just printing more money doesn’t mean that money has any value if there’s nothing to back it up.
Following the horribly stupid drunken breakup, Ai Xing heads off to work the next morning upset that Tian Ze left really early without as word. He’ll be okay, right? I don’t know, the woman he “invested” in said she was leaving him for money… how would he be okay? Ai Xing goes into work where Yia Nan worries over her depressed state. Ling Li then approaches and asks Ai Xing if she really meant it when she said she was only trying to seduce Ren to keep him away from Jing Jing. Ai Xing reaffirms this and Ling Li starts acting all nice to her once more. This means they are allies and Ai Xing must help Ling Li keep Jing Jing and Ren Wei apart. Yia Nan is anxious at watching this as he isn’t quite sure if the manager can be trusted, but Ai Xing pretends that its all good even though she had no idea what Ling Li was talking about when she said the “enemy of my enemy is my friend.” Ling Li also tells Ai Xing that Ren never does anything without a reason, so there is an ulterior motive to him paying off the Meng family debt and going after Jing Jing romantically.
Meanwhile, Tian Ze arrives at Ren’s office for work and to ask if Ren as involved himself with Fu Hua Construction. Ren scolds him for not knocking and just coming in and then hands him a file saying that it had the answer to Tian Ze’s question. Ren, never giving a straight answer, always making things childishly like a game. Ren then reveals that he is partnering with Mr. Meng and forming a new company to finish the Mei Ze development. Tian Ze needs to draw up a memo and confidentiality agreement for Mr. Meng to sign. Tian Ze then finally breaks down and asks the question that’s been eating at him – is Ren interested in Jing Jing? Ren says that since he repaid NT$500 million for the Meng family, of course he’s interested in them and Jing Jing. Tian Ze grabs at this and tells Ren resolutely that Jing Jing is not easily swayed by money. Ren says that was before Jing Jing was faced with the crisis of not having money. He then also goes on to say that human beings are weak and he basically tells Tian Ze that Jing Jing will be his.
Did you know? When a man lacks money… his woman may not leave him. But when a man is rich… other people’s women may become his.
Jing Jing and her father are in a meeting when the secretary comes in with Ai Xing. Mr. Meng tells Jing Jing it’s okay and the younger girl steps out. I love how Ai Xing was actually understanding and didn’t come out and immediately yell at Jing Jing for her decision [and rather bad break-up skill]. When they get to the roof [everyone always has conversations on rooftops – is that really normal?], Ai Xing doesn’t allow Jing Jing to speak and rattles off all the information she learned from her manager. Jing Jing listens and talks about how she was a bad daughter who only cared about herself. Jing Jing also now understands why her mother wanted her to marry Jerry. Jing Jing is really beating herself up for not realizing the situation earlier. Ai Xing tries to comfort the girl, but Jing Jing doesn’t want to be comforted, she wants to keep blaming herself.
Sigh. I really can’t stand that. Yes, Jing Jing did only think of herself and misunderstood her parents. But that is also her parents’ fault. Why? Their marriage was a business arrangement – they didn’t get hitched because they loved each other. And as good as Mr. Meng seems to be, you know that there is no affection for the woman he calls his wife. So, for Jing Jing to desire real love of a marriage of convenience is actually to be expected. As for the bad financial situation, Jing Jing shouldn’t have just jumped to conclusions that her mom was doing everything out of spite, especially when the bank employee emphasized that it was a “company” account, but its not like her parents were forthcoming about their financial woes. Thus, her taking the entire burden on her shoulders is ludicrous. Equally as ludicrous is Jing Jing’s thinking of how she is the solution to the problem.
Jing Jing then asks about Tian Ze. Ai Xing tells her the truth about Tian Ze’s restlessness during the night and how he is completely ignoring all of Ai Xing’s texts and calls. When Jing Jing looks even more worried, Ai Xing tells her friend that Tian Ze is just doing that because he doesn’t want Ai Xing to see him cry. He will be all right. After all, he did eventually get over losing Jing Jing after the accident [even though he always thought of her and hoped she would come back]. Jing Jing then begs Ai Xing to look after Tian Ze. Jing Jing feels bad as she can’t give Tian Ze anything as she feels too guilty for being happy with him when her parents were dealing with this crisis [again, I find this annoying because the two, in reality, do NOT go hand-in-hand]. Oddly enough, Ai Xing refuses Jing Jing’s request at first.
I can’t. He [Tian Ze] can survive without me. I never cared for him for the past couple of years.
Jing Jing points out that Tian Ze has lost her once again and begs Ai Xing to watch over him. Ai Xing breaks down and promises. She then wonders who will be taking care of Jing Jing. This makes her friend’s façade completely crumble. Jing Jing starts crying and Ai Xing wraps her in a hug. Ai Xing makes Jing Jing promise to tell her everything so Ai Xing can take care of Jing Jing as well. This makes Jing Jing feel happy to have such a friend. Ai Xing really doesn’t understand why Jing Jing can break up with Tian Ze and Jing Jing explains that she doesn’t know if she’ll have to do something she’ll be ashamed of later. Oy. And I am sure we can all get what she means here.
Wouldn’t you know that Ai Xing and Jing Jing run into Tian Ze on their way back from their chat? Mrs. Meng also comes and invites the two to the celebratory lunch with Ren Wei. That conniving wench. During the luncheon, Jing Jing rather fakely expresses her interest in Ren while Tian Ze just watches on with that hurt expression on his face. He corners Jing Jing later and she refuses to talk to him at all. Ren comes up and Jing Jing leaves and Ren tells Tian Ze to get a clue about how hard things are for Jing Jing without Tian Ze adding his lack of understanding. Ren does have a point there, but Jing Jing running away without having a clear talk with Tian Ze [NOT a drunken meaningless rant] isn’t right either. Tian Ze does need to grow up and take Jing Jing’s feelings into consideration as a daughter whose family is facing a major crisis. Also, with this lunch, you’d think that Meng would really start worrying about Ren when they got to talk about business versus friendship and not mixing the two. We also had Ren open up about his “weak” father who let friendship get him in the end [Meng’s face did look kind of worried there].
After the lunch, Ai Xing is feeling rather uncomfortable. She notices Tian Ze walking off and tries to talk to him, but he ignores her yet again. Back at the Meng house, Tian Ze keeps calling and Jing Jing ignores the call while her mom talks about how well the luncheon went and how interested Ren Wei is in Jing Jing. However, I really don’t think Mrs. Meng is right when she says that her husband would be happy if Jing Jing and Ren Wei ended up together [why? because he isn’t a cold-blooded person and genuinely cares about his daughter’s happiness]. Seriously, whenever Mrs. Meng does something to make me think she isn’t a bad mother, she turns around and says something like that. It’s kind of a prettified version of prostitution. She’s sacrificing her daughter’s happiness and “selling” her to the highest bidder. Sure, Mrs. Meng wants her daughter to have a good life and it does seem like she genuinely loves Jing Jing, but I think Mrs. Meng thinks more of herself than anyone else when pushing Jing Jing into a marriage of convenience. Oh, and when Jing Jing just stares at the ringing phone and then covers her head… WTF? Why didn’t she just SHUT THE PHONE OFF? Or is she trying to punish herself to the max? It was really, really stupid.
Meanwhile, Ai Xing is home and worried about Tian Ze who won’t answer her calls or texts. She curses him for making her worry and lose sleep. When Ai Xing gets up from his couch, she notices the three mugs on the counter. Her red mug is between Tian Ze’s and Jing Jing’s white and blue ones. Ai Xing quickly switches the mugs so her friends’ cups are together once more. Interesting. We then also get a montage of recent events and of old ones back when Jing Jing and Ai Xing first met. I believe Ai Xing is really worried about Jing Jing giving up true love to sacrifice herself for her family.
Oh. My. God. Tian Ze turned into a stalker! He waited all night outside of Jing Jing’s apartment building. He rambles on about the happenings of the night and Jing Jing finally cuts him off. Tian Ze begs for three hours of her time. Jing Jing refuses. Tian Ze then narrows it down to one hour. Jing Jing angrily goes with him to the bank where he gives her the money from the apartment. He then says that he will sell their “memento” as well as the price is still good. Jing Jing takes the money and cruelly throws it on the floor as it is only a measly NT$50,000 and her father’s debt is in the millions [billions?]. Talk about a slap to Tian Ze who already knew the money wasn’t nearly enough, but wanted to help in any way he could. Jing Jing also tells him to quickly sell the stock and stop romanticizing it by calling it a memento. Tian Ze runs after her and calls her a coward. Jing Jing says she is and basically lays down the situation a lot better than her drunken break up from the previous night. Good for her on that one. Tian Ze just keeps calling her a coward and the crying Jing Jing yells behind her as she walks away that he needs to stop loving a coward like her. A very raw, good scene. How Tian Ze couldn’t get it was beyond me, but now that he does. Oh boy.
So, after his official, final break up with Jing Jing, Tian Ze gets rip-roaring drunk. He starts counting his money, waving and throwing it around. Ai Xing shows up and apologizes to the people in the roadside canteen. I feel badly for Ai Xing who has to bear double the amount of pain thanks to being caught between Jing Jing and Tian Ze. Boy, is Tian Ze doing the number one cardinal sin that can be committed to Ai Xing – throwing away money. Just because the reason behind the money is gone, doesn’t mean he should just throw it away like its useless.
Meanwhile, Jing Jing calls Ren Wei out and begs him to look after Tian Ze for her as she doesn’t want him to be allowed to self destruct. Wow. Jing Jing has balls. Ren cannot believe the sheep is asking the wolf’s house. Jing Jing says she basically knows Ren is just playing with her. Ren says Jing Jing and Tian Ze are an ill-fated couple. She cut up her credit cards for him and he begged for an advance to rent an apartment. This surprises Jing Jing. Right, Tian Ze wouldn’t let her know he begged his boss for money to get the apartment. She also realizes just how much Ren is enjoying watching their relationship drama unfold. Ren says he doesn’t sympathize with their situation at all as he’d never stoop to sympathize with a poor person. Oy. That man’s attitude. I love Jing Jing’s parting barb when she pays for the drinks. This annoys Ren as he paid off NT$500 million, so what good is NT$500 for wine? Jing Jing tells him that poor people have dignity, too. And then she goes and shivers at the bus stop. Why does no one dress for the appropriate weather in dramas? Ren comes up and gives her his jacket and says there will come a time when she will come to him instead of vice versa like tonight. The battle between the two is officially on!
Ai Xing and Tian Ze drink together [I think she shouldn’t have let him continue to drink] in a park. Tian Ze wonders how paper with numbers can change a person so drastically. Ai Xing tells him not to be sad since Jing Jing had no choice. How it really hurts Tian Ze that Ren Wei had the NT$500 million when Tian Ze had to beg him for a measly NT$60,000. The more she hears Ren’s name, the angrier she gets. Ai Xing tells Tian Ze to leave Ren alone as she will get revenge for him. Tian Ze then gets all vulnerable and wonders if Ai Xing can get Jing Jing back for him as well. Ouch, that was heartbreaking. Tian Ze then wonders if he did enough for her to fulfill his promise to her. Did he do something wrong to be left like this? Ai Xing, hurting because he is hurting, tears up and insists that he did everything he could have done. Tian Ze then wonders why the ones he loves leaves. First his mother, and now Jing Jing, not once but twice. Ai Xing holds him and says he hasn’t lost everything. She is still there and will never leave him. Aww.
A break in the melodrama comes with Ai Xing getting Tian Ze home. Once inside he goes to throw up and Ai Xing covers his mouth with her hand and rushes him to the bathroom. He then lies on the floor half naked and Ai Xing struggles to pick him up and take him back to the couch. It was like watching pinball as Tian Ze bounced her here and there until the two wind up on the bed together. I think Tian Ze was very vulnerable and a part of him didn’t want to let go of Ai Xing out of fear that she would leave him as well. Ai Xing has to give up getting him to his own bed. She stares at his sleeping face and caresses it with her hand.
Du Tian Ze… Why does seeing you like this…make me feel sad as well? What can I do to help you?
The next morning Grandpa Du and Zhi Xing show up for one of their surprise visits and wonder just what the heck is going on as Ai Xing and Tian Ze are all cuddled together on the bed. Ai Xing wakes up in total embarrassment. She immediately says that things aren’t what Du thinks. Du says that it’s in Tian Ze’s genes to stray, but Ai Xing, is she really Tian Ze’s mistress. LOL. Ai Xing insists that isn’t what he thinks and then wonders how they got in. Looks like she forgot to lock the door during the drunken commotion. AI Xing then wakes Tian Ze up [none too gently] and kicks them all out so she can change for work. Ai Xing is a lot more flustered than the last time she ended up sharing a bed with Tian Ze. Looks like Ai Xing is awakening to feelings at long last. Du scolds Tian Ze for drinking to the point of passing out and Ai Xing comes out, trying to avoid Tian Ze who tells her to have some coffee. Ai Xing refuses and goes to rush out, but Tian Ze calls after her. Did she bite him last night? He aches all over. Ai Xing immediately says her twin brother did it and runs for the door. LMAO.
At work, Ai Xing goes to Ren’s office and lights into him for what he’s doing to Jing Jing and Tian Ze. Like always, Ren points out that he’s the boss and that Ai Xing cannot talk to him in such a way. Does she want to keep her job. And like always, hearing this makes Ai Xing back down. Ren insists on an apology and Ai Xing reluctantly spits one out. eRen scolds her insincerity and Ai Xing mumbles out a more sincere one before taking it back and calling him a villain once more and she says he can fire her if he wants to. Needless to say, this sudden turn from Ai Xing really shocks Ren. Got to love that a lot of these moments are expressed with random English phrases.
Of course, after Ai Xing has left the office she is in agony. She really needs this job, Ren wouldn’t really fire her would he? The manager then shows up and Ai Xing has a little breakdown and begs the manager not to fire her. Ling Li has no idea what Ai Xing is talking about. The girl filed paperwork improperly. Ai Xing laughs off her momentary breakdown and goes to redo the paperwork, but the suspicious manager grabs her hair and drags her behind. Seriously, these two.
Tian Ze hands Ren the contract and his resignation. I have to love Ren’s comment to Tian Ze when he does this:
Sometimes, men are more fragile than women. Although they look like a Transformer on the outisde, if a screw becomes loose, they totally break down.
Do you know how to destroy a man? Out of love, out a job, and having one’s spirit crushed. Talk about having one’s spirits crushed, that sounds a lot like you. You’re just finding an excuse to abandon yourself to your vices. I’m your excuse. I destroyed your life, I destroyed your dream, right?
I thought that maybe this was Ren’s roundabout way of actually doing what Jing Jing asked, but no. Yes, Tian Ze is wallowing in pity and blaming Ren for everything that went wrong. Ren then slaps Tian Ze and tells him to be a man, keep working and try to steal Jing Jing back. Ren, of course, had to point out how he is more pitiful since he became an orphan at the tender age of twelve and bounced from home to home, living off of others’ charity.
Ren. Ren. Ren. How much of this is a game? How much is revenge? And will his character ever be worthy of redemption? After this episode, I think Ai Xing and Tian Ze should just get together and Jing Jing and Ren can have each other.