Posted in Recap

The Sword and The Brocade Ep 1-10

Episodes 1-10

The show opens up with a rainy sky. Luo Shiyi (the FL) and her biological mother, Madame Lu, are kneeling outside in the rain. Madame Luo (the main wife of the Luo household) is sitting indoors enjoying her tea and admiring her jewels while Madame Lu begs her to forgive Shiyi for breaking Yuanniang’s hairpin. (Yuanniang is Madame Luo’s biological daughter.) Because Shiyi is stubborn and won’t apologize she gets beaten.

Fast forward to the present. Through dialogue, we learn that Shiyi and her mother were sent away to live in Yuhang, and now they’re being summoned back to the capital. With them in the carriage is Dongqing (a maid that Shiyi treats like a sister).

At the same time, Xu Lingyi (the ML) is laying a trap to catch two fugitives. 

Shiyi’s group goes into an inn, and Shiyi gets taken hostage by the two fugitives. Shiyi ends up falling in the river. Lingyi and a man in white ends up saving Shiyi. Lingyi gets hurt in the process but keeps mum about it. 

Shiyi wakes up and thanks the man in white, whose name is Lin Shixian. He seems taken with her at first sight. [2nd male lead, here we go.]

On the way back to the Luo manor, Shiyi drops by Xianling Pavilion to visit Master Jian, the one who taught Shiyi how to embroider. There’s a man, Wang Yu, causing trouble and Shiyi drives him away with her clever tongue.

Arriving at the Luo manor, Shiyi greets her father and Madame Luo along with her older sisters, Erniang and Wuniang.

[Honestly, these people are naming their daughters too lazily! They’re just called by numbers! Shiyi means “eleven.” She’s also addressed as Shiyiniang sometimes. Niang is just a suffix that means “young lady.” Her sisters Er and Wu are “two” and “five.” The previously mentioned Yuanniang, her Yuan just means “first.” It’s one thing to nickname your kids with numbers – rather common back in the day – but just naming them by numbers… Wow… Now I’m wondering what happened to all the other numbers in between, like three, four, six, seven, etc, and is Shiyi the youngest daughter.]

Recap by Vanilla Muse. Please read this on vmnovels (dot) com

Turns out the father, Old Master Luo, is having troubles with his work at court. His teacher – the one he depends on at court – has retired, so there’s no one to help him get reinstated. [Why did he lose his position in the first place? No idea. The show doesn’t say.] So now he’s trying to wed two of his daughters to powerful families: the Xu family and Wang family.

Yuanniang – the current main wife of the Xu family – is dying. So she and her mother, Madame Luo, are looking to have one of her younger sisters take her place as the main wife in order to look after her son, Xu Zhun. (They call him Zhun-ge in the show. Ge mean’s “brother.”) They want someone who is smart, but who they can also control. They’re deciding between Shiyi and Erniang. Madame Luo likes Erniang better, but Yuanniang ends up choosing Shiyi.

Wuniang’s marriage is already decided. She’s marrying a commoner, but he’s a nice person, so she’s happy with the match.

Erniang wants the marriage with the Xu family, because Wang Yu of the Wang family has a bad reputation and is known for being a womanizer. So when her marriage to the Wang family is set, she pretends to be Shiyi and goes out to seduce Wang Yu with her looks. She succeeds and he demands to change his marriage partner to Shiyi.

Shiyi doesn’t care, because she’s plotting to escape back to Yuhang with her mother and Dongqing. She manages to hitch a ride with Lin Shixian on his boat. They set up a date and time, and will be meeting in front of Ci’an Temple. 

In the Xu manor, drama is being stirred. Qiao Lianfang is a young girl that Madame Xu has watched growing up, so Madame Xu is incredibly fond of her. Madame Xu is secretly hoping that she will become Lingyi’s main wife after Yuanniang dies. Yuanniang won’t allow this, because this would put her son at a disadvantage, so she sets up a trap and gets Lianfang to come into the Xu family as a concubine instead. Lingyi doesn’t like her and neglects her, much to Madame Xu’s chagrin.

On the day that Shiyi is supposed to meet Lin Shixiang in front of Ci’an Temple, she is delayed because Madame Wang (Wang Yu’s mother) wants to meet her, since his son suddenly insisted on marrying her. When she finally gets to Ci’an Temple, she finds that her mother has been killed and the murderer is at large.

Recap by Vanilla Muse. Please read this on vmnovels (dot) com

Madame Luo takes this chance to try to break Shiyi’s spirit and make her an obedient puppet, but Master Jian visits and talks Shiyi out of her depressive spiral. Shiyi picks herself back up and decides to investigate her mother’s death herself. Old Master Luo and Madame Luo wanted to close the case a.s.a.p. because they’re afraid it would mess with his chances at court.

Shiyi finds out that the Xu family were at Ci’an Temple that day, so she decides to marry in and continue her investigation from the inside. She finds out what Erniang did, and counters by sending her self portrait to Wang Yu.

Wang Yu sees the portrait and storms into the Luo manor. He drags Erniang out and kisses her in front of everyone, thus sealing their marriage.

Yuanniang dies. Before she breathed her last, she made Shiyi promise to look after Xu Zhun, and told her to be careful of the Xu family because her illness was strange. One year later, Shiyi marries into the Xu family. Shiyi is nervous about the wedding night, but they end up not consummating the marriage, to her relief.

Recap by Vanilla Muse. Please read this on vmnovels (dot) com

We’re introduced to other members of the Xu family. There is Xiang Yizhen (widow to Lingyi’s older 2nd brother). There is Xu Lingkuan (Lingyi’s younger brother) and his wife Princess Danyang (who looks down on Shiyi for being the daughter of a concubine). Concubines Qin and Wen are looking to see which way the wind blows. Lianfang a.k.a. Concubine Qiao is instigated by the people around her (her servants and her mother), so she views Shiyi as her nemesis and the obstacle to her happiness with Lingyi.

Amber is a maid assigned by Madame Luo to Shiyi’s side to keep tabs on her, but Shiyi accepts her into the fold, and Amber is grateful for Shiyi’s trust.

Shiyi begins investigating by finding an excuse to look at everyone’s embroidery skills.

Madame Xu prompts Lingyi to spend more time with his concubines. He tries, and this ends up reiterating just how much he doesn’t connect with any of them.

Lianfang tries to instigate trouble with some brocade. She takes the share that is meant for the main wife and hires someone to make nice clothing out of it. Lingyi warns her not to be greedy for what is not hers and tells her never to wear that piece of clothing again. [Lmao, she had that coming.]

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