The Story of Minglan Episode 4 Recap

Below you’ll find The Story of Minglan Episode 4 Recap.

Wow it’s been ages since I’ve done a recap of the Story of Minglan!

My apologies for anyone still waiting on this series!

I created this site and then got sidetracked and then came back again so please don’t think I’ve given up recapping this series.

It’s a very LONG series but wonderfully performed and acted.

So I cannot give up on recapping it episode by episode.

*Gives a bow

Last episode we left off with the passing of Minglan’s mother because of a difficult childbirth.

Yet the audience is given hints throughout the episode that someone’s schemes are at play.

Because there are too many coincidences.

The nanny for delivery gets drunk on this very important day?

And there happens to be no backup?

Hmm, a mystery indeed. I’m sure the show will solve these issues soon enough.

Story of Minglan Episode 4 Recap Highlights:

  • Minglan’s aunt tries to take her home with her but her real motive is something different
  • Wang Ruofu regains household management rights
  • Old Madam Sheng will take care of Minglan from now on (just like her mother wanted)

Sorry folks, let’s get on with the Story of Minglan episode 4 recap!

Aftermath of the Passing of Minglan’s Mother

An older lady is feeding Minglan some medicine since she fainted in the last episode.

Chinese medicine is sooooo bitter. Makes me cry everytime I see that black concoction. T_T

She is Minglan’s aunt, a sister of her mother’s.

As she feeds Minglan, she mentions how she must get better because she’s planning on bringing Minglan home to her place.

She comments how it could be difficult to live here because she has to fend for herself.

Against the mother of the family, the concubine, and possibly her siblings.

After feeding Minglan the medicine, the aunt seeks a discussion with Wang Ruofu, the main wife of Sheng Hong.

She tearfully thanks Wang Ruofu for how well she planned the funeral for Minglan’s mother.

Of course Wang Ruofu plays the dutiful wife so well, saying she cherished Minglan’s mother, missing her already.

Minglan’s aunt looks away (probably to hide her eye-roll?).

The aunt then asks for a request.

To take Minglan home with her.

Wang Ruofu’s right-hand nanny is a smart women. She knows that her madam may not be able to deal with this difficult request.

So when she leaves her side to ask for tea, she asks another maidservant to call for Sheng Hong.

Meanwhile the nanny tells Minglan’s aunt that if this issue can be resolved with extra silvers.

Because money wouldn’t be an issue.

But the aunt is offended thinking that she’s labeled for taking advantage of the situation.

Minglan’s Aunt Negotiates for A Better Life for Minglan

But before the situation can be escalated, Sheng Hong strolls in.

Miss Wei (aka Minglan’s aunt) rolls her eyes knowing that Sheng Hong is here to prevent her from taking Minglan away.

Sheng Hong doesn’t plan on letting her take away Minglan.

He tells her that if one day their family can’t feed themselves only THEN can they consider giving up Minglan.

Ouch that probably burned!

So Miss Wei tries a different approach, mentioning how she heard her sister died due to childbirth.

Because the child was too big and couldn’t come out.

And how Sheng Hong and his wife were out that day, leaving all maters for the concubine to handle.

She portrays herself as a good samaritan, saying that she wants to lessen their burdens by taking Minglan with her for a few days.

Wang Ruofu speaks up saying that it’s best for Minglan to stay here.

She will have several maidservants taking care of her, a doctor at her side at all times.

And she will personally be at her side.

I think what Miss Wei wanted was for Wang Ruofu to promise verbally that Minglan will get better treatment from now on. Smart woman!

Miss Wei smiles since she got what she wanted.

She finishes it off by saying if Minglan is treated well then she and her sister in heaven can be at peace.

The Matriarch of Sheng Household

While the nanny and another maidservant of Wang Ruofu wonder why Miss Wei no longer pursues taking Minglan home, another maidservant passes on some news.

Old Madam Sheng just arrived. Or otherwise known as Minglan’s paternal grandmother.

Old Madam Sheng left briefly to go live near a shrine that may have been helpful for her recovery.

She lectures Sheng Hong for failing to control the women in his household.

Reminding him that her son, Sheng Hong’s brother, died from a concubine’s schemes.

She knows that Sheng Hong has a soft spot for his concubine because his own concubine mother didn’t have it easy.

And it’s revealed that Sheng Hong is somehow uncomfortable with his wife’s temper?

Old Madam Sheng continues to lecture him and hints to him that his concubine, Madam Lin may be the instigator.

Whether or not he wants to hear.

But it’s not clear because he’s convinced that the unruly servants took “advantage” of Madam Lin’s inability to lead the household.

And caused this situation to occur.

Mmmhmm Madam Lin is TOTALLY incapable of managing a household.

Old Madam Sheng switches the topic and subtly lets Sheng Hong know that she will be raising Minglan from now on.

It’s very subtle though and shows how capable this Old Madam is.

Older Ginger is Spicier

She starts off with commenting how well his wife took care of matters and how she should be left with taking care of everything.

And so not to burden her any further, she will take care of Minglan.

Sheng Hong is surprised that she chose Minglan and tries to suggest Molan (Madam Lin’s daughter).

But Old Madam Sheng counters that the Wei household might be aggrevated if she does that.

Because Minglan is now an orphan and needs meticulous care.

Sheng Hong isn’t convinced though, saying that since Minglan is currently living at the main wife’s courtyard, it should be good enough.

So Old Madam Sheng spins up something else.

Saying that one of his concubines just died and he sold off a ton of maidservants on the excuse that they were unruly.

But the public doesn’t know the details. So if one of his rivals that are unhappy with his promotion, investigates the matter and leverages those servants.

He could be in trouble.

Woah. Mother you have amazing insight!

Sheng Hong is amazed at her insight and immediately agrees.

Old Madam Sheng is GOOD. Damn. What an awesome grandma!

And that’s that. Minglan will be under Old Madam Sheng’s protection now.

Wang Ruofu Regains the Reins of the Household

Sheng Hong is enjoying a nice soak of his feet while Wang Ruofu caters to him.

He tells her that it’s best if she manages the household matters again.

Wang Ruofu is pleasantly surprised.

Of course she pretends that she doesn’t want to be bothered with such tiresome matters.

But Sheng Hong mentions how Madam Lin is incapable of handling this heavy responsibility.

And of course Sheng Hong wouldn’t have mentioned this matter if Old Madam Sheng didn’t HINT that his wife should have the reins again.

Wang Ruofu is very happy but tries to control her emotions.

The funeral procession is underway the next day.

But Minglan is unable to attend, burning with a fever.

Old Madam Sheng’s nanny, Nanny Fang tells Old Madam Sheng that Sheng Hong has been ignoring Madam Lin for a few days.

Maybe he has learned his lesson?

Old Madam Sheng scoffs, knowing this is just temporary.

Madam Lin, Sheng Hong’s concubine is frustrated that he’s been favoring his wife for the last few days.

She throws things in her room, scaring her daughter Molan.

Hmm this looks like deja vu? Molan was throwing stuff around in her room in an earlier episode. Looks like the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree.

Madam Lin worries about losing Sheng Hong’s favor.

Journey to BianJing

The Sheng household is heading towards Bianjing because Sheng Hong got promoted in court.

They need to take a ship to get there.

And it turns out Gu Tingye is also heading there as well.

Minglan sees Gu Tingye and passes him a gift.

Because her mother reminded her to never forget to repay others for their kindness.

Minglan gifts Gu Tingye with a rolled up cloth.

I think it’s hand-made knee guards?

Gu Tingye reveals a smile on his face after accepting the gift and returns her bow.

As Minglan leaves and returns to her grandmother’s side.

Minglan has definitely made an impression on Gu Tingye and time will tell how their relationship pans out.

Oh who are we kidding? We KNOW they will end up together but the journey is what makes us curious.

That night, we see Minglan crying all alone at the top of the ship, staring out into the ocean.

But her grandmother comes over and consoles her.

She tells her that grandmother will protect her no matter what.

Then she yells out loud that Minglan has someone who loves her.

The grandmother is one of my favorite characters. She’s awesome!

Meanwhile, Wang Ruofu is sitting in her room and comments how Sheng Hong hasn’t visited Madam Lin over 6 months.

She plans on selling Madam Lin when they arrive in Bianjing.

But her hand maiden warns her that it might not be easy.

Because both Molan and Changfeng are helping their mother out.

White Lotus Act

Madam Lin and Wang Ruofu are duking it out outside of Sheng Hong’s room.

He ends up coming out to help Madam Lin when Madam Lin subtly hints that Wang Ruofu wants to silence her for something.

Madam Lin puts on a pitiful act and ends up convincing Sheng Hong that Wang Ruofu had a hand in Madam Wei’s death (Minglan’s mom).

Because when everyone was looking for another midwife to help with delivery, Wang Ruofu’s servants didn’t help either.

She continues to cry and state that it’s because she loves Sheng Hong too much that Wang Ruofu is out to get her.

But she shows that she doesn’t mind as long as she is given a small place to survive.

Just so she can stay near Sheng Hong’s side.

Madam Lin is way too good. She knows how to pick the right buttons to push. She knows Sheng Hong’s heart has a place for her.

Madam Lin crawls over to Wang Ruofu to beg her for forgiveness and ends up fainting at her feet.

Filled with concern, Sheng Hong carries her to her own bedroom. He reveals to her that he didn’t have an easy time growing up.

Because his own mother was a concubine. And if it weren’t for Old Madam Sheng taking him under her protection, he wouldn’t have survived.

So he promises to Madam Lin that her children won’t suffer like he did.

Welp that was short-lived. Madam Lin wins again!

Landing in Bianjing

Gu Tingye separates from Changbai and promises to meet up again later.

His younger pounces on him for a greeting and we meet Gu Tingye’s mother in a carriage.

Who mentions that his father was furious when he heard that Gu Tingye left all of a sudden.

So Gu Tingye decides not to go home for now.

His mother is so gentle and kind letting Gu Tingye roam around.

Sheng Hong attends court and is brought to the front when the emperor is discussing the locust pests.

However, a few older court officials want to discuss naming an heir.

Since the emperor refused private meetings about this topic, they are bringing it up out in the open.

The emperor rises up from his throne and asks if they are asking him to abdicate the throne.

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It’s obvious that Sheng Hong has a soft spot for concubines because he was a son of a concubine. He KNOWS what it’s like to grow up being labeled as such. And the difficulties.

So he can’t help but want to help Madam Lin.

Can’t help favoring her too.


Old Madam Sheng knows her son best and Wang Ruofu’s dominance was just temporary.

Poor Minglan, she’s lost her mother but at least she has her grandmother now to help support her.

Her grandmother is amazing! She knows how to play the game and to be subtle.

So maybe she will teach Minglan to hide her skills as well?

I can’t wait for Minglan to grow up and show her awesomeness!

What did you think of episode 4? Any thoughts about the Story of Minlan episode 4 recap?

Leave a comment below!

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2 years ago

This blog is a life saver. Without it I would really struggle to understand the intricacies of what is going on.

1 year ago
Reply to  Nush

Same! Episode recaps make watching shows so much more enjoyable because I don’t miss the smaller details that often pass me by 🙂

4 years ago

So I just found your website due to this show. I blame Facebook for getting me addicted to K-dramas. Which led to me downloading and subscribing to Viki which opened me up to so many other dramas including the C-dramas like this one that I just finished. I was looking for fiction or takes on the show because this show was so good I just wanted more content from it so I hope you do continue recapping and reviewing each episode it’s interesting reading your thoughts and interpretations on the episodes, things you caught that I didn’t etc. I was… Read more »

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