The Story of Minglan Episode 23 Recap

We made it to Story of Minglan episode 23! One of the readers favorite episodes! Minglan sent off her grandma from the scene of danger, but who will rescue Minglan?

Story of Minglan Episode 23 Recap Highlights:

  • Minglan gets saved by an unlikely acquaintance
  • Minglan gives Gu Tingye some advice about Rongjie
  • A cousin in-law causes trouble

Slowly chugging along with these episode recaps! Let’s find out what happens in Story of Minglan episode 23!

Meeting of an unlikely acquaintance

Minglan pushes barrels down and plans to stall for time.

After assembling an interesting layout, the pirates rush up to the deck to capture her.


The pirates have no choice but to walk over the barrels and Minglan has a long bamboo stick ready to whack them down.

Seeing that there’s no end to them, she runs to the other end and jumps down to the first level.

And then she jumps into the water. But she’s not a great swimmer and sinks towards the bottom.

The doll that Yuan Ruo gave her floats out of her pockets and she reaches out to it.

Before holding grasping it close to her chest.

Moments later, someone dives in to save her.

Minglan wakes up in a new environment where a little girl, Rongjie, offers her some ginger soup.


Minglan asks her some questions like who dressed her and who saved her but Rongjie stresses that she’s cold.

So she should drink the soup.

Rongjie is so cute!

Then Gu Tingye comes in, sporting a beard. But Minglan doesn’t recognize him and introduces herself as a daughter from the Sheng household.

Gu Tingye tells her that she shouldn’t tell him her family name because it could ruin her reputation.

But Minglan thinks it would be rude otherwise to a righteous person such as himself.

Then Gu Tingye remarks how he’s finally waited for the day where Sheng family’s sixth miss would call him righteous.

Minglan does a double-take.

Then recognizes Gu Tingye.

She then remembers her grandmother and asks if she’s alright.

Gu Tingye reassures her that her grandmother and Xiaotao are fine. So is their boat.

But right now, there’s a lot of debris in the waterways so it’s hard to travel.

Paying Back a Favor

After the cleaning is done, he will send her on her way in another small boat.

Minglan takes this opportunity to ask how Gu Tingye got here.

Who comments that Minglan was right. Manniang had other intentions and wasn’t true to him.

So he’s been chasing her whereabouts. And then he lost her trail so he decided to stick around the Cao Bang. Because Shitou’s sister-in-law is the chief of this business and the business deals with water and ground routes.

He figured he could get more leads here. Then he found out that they were planning to attack Minglan’s ship but afterwards he ended up saving Minglan.

Gu Tingye leads her outside the tent where Minglan greets the others. She thanks them for saving her.


Minglan looks around and asks to speak to Gu Tingye privately.

Gu Tingye wonders if Minglan is planning on convincing him to go back to the capital.

But Minglan tells him that she wants to repay him.

He pales at those words.

Gu Tingye remarks that the last time she wanted to repay him she advised him that Manniang was harboring bad intentions.

This time he saved her again, what is it this time? Is Rongjie planning to harm him too?

Minglan tells him that it’s the news itself that are bad not the messenger.

And of course not. She sincerely wants Rongjie to have a good life.

Because her first impression of Rongjie is a child who was kind enough to give her blankets and ginger soup.

Rongjie’s Future

Minglan wants Gu Tingye to consider Rongjie’s future and head back to the capital. Because if he continues roaming, his daughter will lose the chance to be successful.

Right now, she could be considered the daughter of a roaming warrior while in the capital she would be a Marquis’ daughter.

The two are so vastly different.

Then Minglan narrates a phrase from specific piece of literature.


If Gu Tingye truly cares for his daughter, he should think about her future. Is roaming around like this truly best for Rongjie?

Then Minglan mentions how her birth mother read warring strategies to her. Because the internal affairs of the household is like a battlefield.

Gu Tingye believes it and reveals how his step mother finally revealed her true face when her motive was accomplished.

These two are so similar, facing hard obstacles while finding themselves and growing stronger as a result.

Minglan continues with narrating her past and tries to have Gu Tingye see why he must plan for Rongjie’s future.

It’s not easy for women to live in this world.

Gu Tingye then thanks her for the insight and wonders why she’s not able to figure out her own matters. Like marriage.

She wonders what nonsense he’s speaking about. And Gu Tingye tells her to think about it some more.

Because it’s always better to have a backup.

OMG, I think Gu Tingye just indirectly hinted to her that he still wants her to marry him. He may have joked about it before but seeing her again reminds him why he considered it in the first place. Maybe he believes they are a very good match? Hmm…

Reunion in Youyang

The next morning, Minglan gets escorted back to her ship with a small boat while Gu Tingye watches from a distance.

He’s made a decision and tells Shitou that they will enroll in the army.

Moments later, Minglan and her grandmother finally arrive at their final destination.

The Sheng Manor.

And Old Madam Sheng greets her sister-in-law. Who equally shares her enthusiasm because it’s been a long time.

In the Sheng reception hall, Old Madam Sheng and her sister-in-law catch up on her her journey to Youyang. Old Madam He is here with her grandson as well.

Old Eldest Madam

Old Madam Sheng explains how Minglan helped escort here and if it weren’t for her, she wouldn’t have gotten here in one piece.

So the sister-in-law asks to take a closer look at Minglan.

And Minglan greets her. Old Eldest Madam remarks how well she was raised.

Then mentions that she has two granddaughters, one named Shulan, the older one, who’s been married for a few years now.

One other named Pinlan, who’s around Minglan’s age.

Pinlan is often referred to as a wild monkey but she could be Minglan’s companion while she’s staying here.

And Pinlan pops in the moment her name is mentioned.

Pinlan in orange

Pinlan can show Minglan around while she’s here. And since Youyang is not as strict as it is in the city, Minglan can relax.

Old Madam He then chimes in, asking them to take along her grandson with Chengwu if he’s not busing.

I’m guessing Chengwu is probably a male cousin. So Old Madam He wants her grandson to spend time with Minglan but only in the presence of others. Still playing matchmaker. Hahaha.

But they should take more servants along with them since there’s been so many bandits lately.

Pinlan’s In-laws

A soldier reads a recommendation letter and assigns Gu Tingye to the last squad.

Shitou tries to complain but Gu Tingye agrees and follows another soldier.

While the soldier who read the letter, questions his general if that was a good move.

Because the letter was from commander Zhao Zongquan.

The general then scoffs saying that assigning that person to a squad is already giving a lot of face.

Because there are so many imperial bloodlines out there, does the commander really believe he’s a prince?


When Minglan is out with her cousins, they overhear some bandits. So they return early.

The mid-autumn festival rolls around and both Pinlan and Minglan enjoy playing with lanterns and watching the moon.

But Pinlan comments that even though she normally enjoys this holiday, there’s one reason that she dislikes it.

Because she doesn’t like her in-laws from her sister’s marriage. On holidays, her sister visits with the in-laws.

Her sister, Shulan married a xiucai (someone who has passed the county level imperial exam).

And this xiucai thinks he’s so great. So he hasn’t visited this family yet.

Pinlan doesn’t want to elaborate further so she wants Minglan to see what these in-laws are like herself.

I feel like Pinlan and Rulan’s straightforwardness are similar. They may make great friends XD

Before they arrive, they hear someone bragging about being a xiucai. As in a future counselor-in-chief.

In-law on the left, Minglan looks repulsed by her touch LOL

The in-law believes her nephew would be a great match for Minglan.

When Minglan and Pinlan arrive, the in-law hovers around Minglan, checking her out and comments how well she was raised.

She wants to double up the joyous occasion by making marriage arrangements between her nephew and Minglan.

Not happening if Grandma Sheng is around!

Arrogant In-laws

Old Eldest Madam tells Shulan to escort her mother-in-law to rest because she’s drunk.

But the in-law refuses and asks the question again to Old Madam Sheng.

Who flat out refuses her.

And then the in-law continues to speak, saying how it’s a pity Minglan is a concubine daughter.

But no matter, as long as she orders her nephew to marry Minglan, it will happen.

Now Old Madam He rolls her eyes.

Pinlan is so honest, I like her!

Pinlan then comments if all daughters of the Sheng family need to marry into her Sun household.

Madam Sun then argues that her son became a xiucai at 12 years old and a fortune teller said he would have a prosperous future.

So the nephew who is the xiucai’s cousin may receive help too. But Pinlan counters that Madam Sun’s son was a xiucai at 12. Now 10 years later, he’s still a xiucai.

LOL so he hit a bottleneck and has the audacity to be arrogrant? Jeez.

While Minglan’s brother passed the imperial exam and is now an official.

So Pinlan spits on her arrogance and gets lectured by her mother.

Madam Sun then lectures Shulun for failing to get her some tea. Wondering what’s the point of having her as a daughter-in-law?

Later, Pinlan rushes out and vents her anger.

She wonders why her sister is stuck with this cruel fate.

Sneak Attack

While on patrol, Gu Tingye notices that it’s too quiet. It’s likely that the enemy will plan a sneak attack.

So he enters into the general’s quarters to report the news.


But the general refuses to listen and kicks him out.

Time for plan B. Gu Tingye tells his comrades to pass along the message that enemies are striking today.

And make it sound like it’s the general’s orders.

After they disperse, Gu Tingye wonders if his father used to live like this but Shitou reminds him that his father inherited the title.

I’m guessing Gu Tingye is starting to realize that the title is not easily given. The reputation of the Gu household as a military family was not easy.

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It’s late but here’s Story of Minglan episode 23!

I love how Minglan and Gu Tingye were able to talk on the same level. They both share similar hardships which is why they can relate to one another.

Gu Tingye starts to see Minglan in a different light and I wonder if they are considered friends at this point.

He helped her in the past and she repaid him by pointing out Manniang’s flaws. After saving her again, she helps him plan out Rongjie’s future.

And he indirectly joins the military. Would anyone else repay him like this? Probably not. Which makes Minglan unique to him. XD

Madam He is still playing matchmaker while Minglan gets to see why sometimes marriages don’t work out that well. When you marry, you don’t just marry the person, you connect the families.

So you’ll need to see if the in-laws are sufficient too. But Minglan’s cousins are given the short end of the stick.

What were your thoughts on this Story of Minglan episode 23? Leave a comment below!

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3 years ago

I’m glad minglan pointed out to gutingye that a life in the wilderness was no life for a little girl! She basically said what I was thinking the entire previous episode!

Meanwhile, gutingye looks really good with a beard! One of the best beards I’ve seen recently in a Chinese drama lol!

He’s really growing on me and seems more manly than Lord Qi. One gets the sense he’ll be able to protect minglan better than yanruo.

4 years ago

Yeah!!! I love this episode. Damsel in distress Minglan, Pirate Tingye. That conversation which is so deep and the way he looks at her after she imparts her wisdom about why shouldn’t she know about daughters, isn’t she a daughter. Like he’s just seeing her for the first time even though they’ve known each other for years.

This is just such a great moment for them and of course it’s just the start for them.

The start of all the times where he’s going to show up any time she’s in danger and save her life. Only a couple episodes away from the bandits and their next deep conversation. Then him escorting her home in secret. Then of course my next fav moment the when Yuanruo’s courage absolutely fails him and you just see Tingye make up his mind that Minglan is going to marry him and have a good life even if he doesn’t actually say anything out loud

This episode really starts to hammer home the reality that you don’t just marry a person but you marry their whole family. It’s a lesson that Minglan is going to take to heart in the future and if the marriage she chooses to make is worth the family she takes on.

An interesting thought when you think about the He family issues Tingye deliberately stirs up to delay the betrothal

Trudging right along. Can’t wait for the next episode.

4 years ago
Reply to  Coco

Yes to all of this but I also think up until then he was still seeing the child he helped not the woman she had grown up into. You know the old idea where the guy always sees someone as a kid until something makes them open their eyes and realize they are grown up. I think this was the moment when Minglan went from a kid and Changbai’s little sister to an grown woman and actual marriage material.

Happy May The 4th! May the 4th be with you lol.

4 years ago
Reply to  Coco

Precisely what I meant. He truly didn’t mean it when they were arguing a couple of episodes back because he thinks she’s just a kid who got involved in something she doesn’t understand but now he realizes she and adult, by their standards not ours, and maybe his jest wasn’t so much of a jest. I think Minglan is supposed to be like 15 or 16 at this time frame keeping track of time in this show is hard but Tingye is definitely in his 20’s, possibly mid 20’s as I think they are supposed the be as far apart… Read more »

4 years ago
Reply to  Krystal

I also have trouble to keep a track of time in this series (not that I mind too much) but I agree with you about the age gap. The two actors have 9 years between them, but the age gap between characters could be smaller.

I am at work, so I can’t double-check the relevant videos, but didn’t concubine Lin say that Minglan was eight when her mother died a couple of episodes ago? And Tingye didn’t look older than 15 at that time, which would make their age difference cca 7 years.

4 years ago
Reply to  Ela

Now I’m gonna have to back and find the clip lol. Mainly cause I want to say she was younger than 8 because Madam Lin also commented that Minglan was too young to remember a lot about that time period of her life and we usually attribute that to preschool age kindergarten age children not first/second graders. Eh at least it gives me something to do on my off day so as not to get to far ahead of this wonderful recapped. Maybe I can hold on episode 30 and let her catch up to me we shall see.

4 years ago
Reply to  Coco

😀 I wanted to check it myself over the weekend, but you two were faster! I noticed it because I also originally thought Minglan must have been around 5, so good that Concubine Lin corrected us! 😀 I am slowly catching up with you, I am at episode 27 – the plot is getting quite dark, I am so anxious!

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