Despite the rushing of the last episode, I’m back again for Joy of Life episode 2!
Why does Lord Fan want Fan Xian to come back to the capital? Does he have other plans for his son?
And will the story continue to leverage the reincarnation trope?
Let’s find out!
Joy of Life Episode 2 Recap Highlights:
- Another assassination attempt is made on Fan Xian’s life
- Fan Xian decides to head towards the capital to investigate
- Someone doesn’t welcome Fan Xian into the capital
Decision to Return to the Capital
The red armored soldiers are kneeling in the courtyard of the Fan Manor. Matriarch Fan tells Fan Xian that they are here to escort him to the capital.
Because of his father’s orders.
But she reassures him that she’s already rejected the request because the capital is too dangerous.
Fan Xian’s mother died in the capital and it’s safer if Fan Xian stays here.
Fan Xian is still undecided and seeks Wu Zhu’s advice.
He then tells Fan Xian that his mother ran a business in the capital.
However, Wu Zhu isn’t helpful as he tells Fan Xian the decision is up to him.
Is he trying to convince Fan Xian to go to the capital?
To go or not to go.
Fan Xian contemplates the decision further.
Later on in the day, Fan Xian, Mr. Zhou and Matriarch Fan share a meal.
Fan Xian notices something wrong with one of the dishes and takes the plate of bamboo shoots for himself.
Telling everyone else that it’s his favorite dish.
Devouring it with fervor.
Is that the dish with poison or something?
After finishing it, Fan Xian then excuses himself and heads out quickly.
Matriarch gazes after him as if she’s thinking about something.
Outside, Fan Xian throw up his food in a nearby pond and a maid rushes over in concern.
But instead, Fan Xian asks her if she ate bamboo shots.
Then it turns out there are several others feeling sick.
From eating the bamboo shoots.
Fan Xian quickly orders people to pour a certain mixture for them to drink. To help them throw up the poisonous food.
Luring the Tiger From Its Mountain?
Fan Xian’s mind starts to turn as he asks about the whereabouts of the red armored soldiers.
And rushes to stop them from apprehending the possible suspect who poisoned everyone.
Because he thinks this is a tactic of luring the tiger from its mountain. So he tells the red armored soldiers that he will take of this.
This tactic is mentioned in the Art of War by Sun Tzu. And part of a war strategy in historical times.
When Fan Xian finds the servant who supposedly delivered the bamboo shoots, he sees him tied up with a cloth in his mouth.
They are not alone.
Turning around, he sees another person.
With a flick of his cape, Teng Zi Jing launches a series of flying daggers aimed at Fan Xian.
And the battle ensues.
Fan Xian appears to be holding quite well until he gets kicked to the ground while his opponent is still standing.
Teng Zijing reveals his blade had poison and thinks he has won.
Until he feels something wrong with his own body.
Because Fan Xian’s blade also had poison.
Then Fan Xian gets up because he’s practically immune to poison now. Since he grew up experimenting with poisons.
Fan Xian has the advantage now as he interrogates his assailant.
It turns out Teng Zijing is from the investigations department and was sent under orders to arrest a national spy (aka Fan Xian).
But Fan Xian reveals a badge (Fei Jie gave to him) and explains himself.
Telling Teng Zijing that the orders to arrest him may be fake.
And should be investigated.
You Cannot Be Soft
Looks like someone is in the background pulling the strings. Hmm, who could it be? Are the same ones who tried to kill Fan Xian in the past?
When Fan Xian returns to the Fan Manor, he sees Mr. Zhou bound up and kneeling in front of Matriarch Fan.
So he was the accomplice who helped Teng Zijing sneak into the Fan Manor.
Matriarch Fan tells Mr. Zhou to tell the truth.
Mr. Zhou claims he did all of this for the Fan Clan. Lord Fan’s second wife sent him here to watch over Fan Xian.
Because once Fan Xian heads back to the capital, it’s likely that he will fight for his inheritance and cause internal strife.
So Mr. Zhou wanted to ensure that Fan Xian would stay in Danzhou.
And besides, the investigation department wanted him dead anyways. Matriarch nods her head in understanding.
Telling Fan Xian that you should never be soft. Fan Xian looks up to his grandmother and smiles with acknowledgement.
Then orders people to break Mr. Zhou’s legs and throw him on a fisherman’s boat. And never allow him to be trialed.
Such a fierce grandma! Just like Minglan’s grandma, I love this character!
Mr. Zhou struggles while being dragged out the door. He had always thought Matriarch Fan hated Fan Xian.
But it was all an act.
Fan Xian tells his grandma that he will return to the capital and investigate who is after him.
Despite Matriarch Fan’s reluctance. Fan Xian promises his grandma that he will return once he’s done investigating.
A Weird Favor
Fan Xian meets up with Teng Zijing again, revealing that he maintained a cold front with his grandmother to keep up appearances.
And to prevent her from being targeted.
Now that he’s leaving, there’s no need to pretend anymore.
Then Teng Zijing asks for a weird favor.
He wants Fan Xian to kill him.
What Wu Zhu Really Wants To Do
Fan Xian tells Wu Zhu that he’s decided to go to the capital.
He knows that Wu Zhu has been staying here, protecting him despite running a shop that’s not generating any profits.
So he wants Wu Zhu to find what he wants to do. Because Wu Zhu is family to him.
And not just a guard.
But Wu Zhu doesn’t understand and misinterprets it as being unneeded.
When Fan Xian leaves, Wu Zhu contemplates over the words Fan Xian previously said, almost triggering some sort of memory.
That night, Wu Zhu stops by Fan Xian’s room as he packs up for tomorrow’s departure.
Because he recalls a chest his Lady left behind and wonders what’s in it.
They two of them try to open it and fail because the exterior is tough.
And the key is hidden in the capital.
So Wu Zhu decides to head to the capital too but separately.
They will meet in the capital.
Heading to the Capital
Despite Matriarch Fan’s refusal to send Fan Xian off, Fan Xian kisses her forehead before saying goodbye.
Telling her to take care of herself until he comes back.
On the road to the capital, Fan Xian discovers that Teng Zijing is hiding amongst his servants.
Because he needs to return to the capital to do something.
Fan Xian requests his help to investigate who is after him but Teng Zijing tells him that he won’t have time to investigate.
Because Fan Xian is getting married in the capital.
He gives him a wedding gift and blesses him good for fortune for the wedding.
Such a last minute gift, but who is Fan Xian marrying? How come he’s the last to know?
Later on, he crosses paths with another carriage who is being guarded by his old medicine teacher.
They secretly meet up and chat for a bit.
Fei Jie is escorting someone to Northern Qi to gather information.
Because the one who was originally suppose to go was killed by Fan Xian.
Aka Teng Zijing.
However, because Teng Zijing attempted to kill one of his own masters, he wouldn’t be given this task anyways.
Meanwhile, Yan Bingyun has to substitute because his subordinate, Teng Zijing commited the crime.
Fan Xian then worries if he’s going to be punished for killing his own allies.
Fei Jie reassures him that it’s fine. Because these teams aren’t really part of the main family.
Just an extension.
Team 4 handles information gathering and investigations.
While Team 6 handles assassinations.
Thank goodness it was someone from team 4 and not team 6. Otherwise, it would be more complicated.
They then separate.
Entering the Capital
But Yan Bingyuan has other plans for Fan Xian as he attempts to wrestle the badge from Fan Xian.
However, Fei Jie comes to his rescue.
And Yan Bingyuan retreats.
Fan Xian’s group finally arrives at the gate of the capital.
But before he enters, he is greeted by a new face.
Wang Qinian introduces himself as someone who eagerly anticipated the arrival of Fan Xian.
And then proceeds to sell Fan Xian a map of the capital.
After Fan Xian leaves, the gate guards applaud Wang Qinian for his skills because they are aware of his scams.
Yet Wang Qinian explains that he’s doing these young nobles a favor by exposing them to scams early on.
So they won’t be tricked within the capital.
Yeah, sure. If that explanation makes you feel better.
Later on, Fan Xian’s escorts leave him with a servant sent to escort him the rest of the way.
And the carriage passes by a hiding place full of women who were intending to stop Fan Xian’s carriage.
Then, Fan Xian’s carriage stops all of a sudden as the servant has to go to the bathroom.
That is too much of a coincidence. What’s going on?
He leaves the carriage and walks around the premises, wondering what temple this place is.
And gets into a fight with a guard.
But then is allowed entry.
Maybe Fan Xian thinks he was purposely led here so it’s strange to him that the guard doesn’t recognize him.
Fan Xian hesitates but ultimately ends up entering the temple gates.
Asking the guard again if he really doesn’t know him.
Okay, someone really doesn’t want Fan Xian to go home in the capital. Is it that second wife of his father?
I hope Fan Xian is prepared for the schemes that will come his way.
Matriarch Fan was awesome in this episode! I knew she wouldn’t be an evil grandma (or at least I was hoping). Because I don’t want to ruin my image of her in Story of Minglan.
Fan Xian’s enemies are in the dark and he has few allies. Will he be able to investigate his mother’s death without drawing too much attention to himself?
It seems pretty difficult.
I’m pretty nervous and worried for Fan Xian because it seems like there are so many enemies!
What did you think about Joy of Life episode 2? Do you think Fan Xian can handle the enemies that are hidden in the dark?
Leave a comment below!