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novel highlights pt.3 (ch. 31-50)

explanations/details

want to emphasize that I don’t consider novel worldbuilding vs. cql the “true canon” and i find that approach obnoxious. of course cql is its own canon, this is only for people like me who were confused and who like details that support or explain what happened in the show

  • the reason jin ling responsed to Inquiry while stuck in the cave wall because he was nearly dead and his spirit was in the right state to respond as a ghost
  • lwj and wwx could walk all over the country with no luggage because they stored everything in little Qiankun Pouches, which I think are used in other wuxia dramas. in cql I’m pretty sure lwj, su she, and jgy store their guqins in there too, which is how they can whip it out whenever they need to fight. in the novel, lwj also carries it on his back
  • the only reason lwj didn’t intervene in the xxc SL and xy case (which was slightly different in the novel but still) and demand justice for the Chang clan/punishment for xy was because lwj was still grounded at CR and recuperating from his wounds
  • the townspeople of yi city were not fierce corpses, but living corpses. living corpses have better range of movement and some independent thought, but are still easy to control and don’t fear pain. some of them don’t even know they’re dead, but they don’t need to eat and bleed continuously from any wounds
  • meanwhile, a-qing is dead and really has no physical body, just a spiritual body and an aura. she stills bleeds from her eyes and mouth. she cannot see or speak because xy blinded her and cut out her tongue just before killing her
  • wwx knows about the congee cure for corpse poisoning because it’s folk medicine and was not taught in the any sect. in several places so far he has demonstrated a better grasp of practical cultivation (identifying monsters, finding cures, etc.) than the best-educated youth of the wealthy, elite, highly-regarded sects (like the Lans)
  • this is due to his own wealth of experience but also because the education of the large sects is severely lacking in many aspects. neat little commentary on class differences and the practical knowledge, resourcefulness, and effective solutions of the common people. for example, the thresholds of yi city are built very high because fierce corpses are too stiff and can’t cross over them, so anyone transformed within a house won’t be able to escape to hurt anyone else
  • the juniors recognized shuanghua on sight because powerful and well-made cultivator swords were illustrated in sword catalogues. i am not making this up see ch. 36
  • i literally do not recall how this went down in cql but if it’s relevant, the juniors don’t carry blank talismans around because none of them are strong or experienced enough cultivators to write their own runes. they carry prewritten talismans that wwx is still able to alter to suit his needs
  • it is clear in the novel that xxc really has no eyes, just hollow sockets
  • wwx is better at Empathy than any other method to get information from ghosts. Empathy is convenient, but dangerous and usually avoided, because it essentially invites a ghost to possess the user. the ghost could seize the user’s body if it wanted to
  • wwx asks jin ling to be the supervisor, which is an extremely important role that prevents the user from getting too lost in emotion. the bell jin ling uses in the silver bell of the Jiang sect! the rest of the details are the same as in cql - wwx sees and hears and feels everything that the ghost did. but i think it can’t be done between two living people.
  • growing up, jin ling lived at carp tower half the time and lotus pier half the time
  • a-qing was born with blank white eyes but could still see perfectly well
  • at the time of meeting xxc she was “younger than 15″
  • xy’s throat was so damaged that his voice was unrecognizably hoarse, but when it healed he purposefully disguised his voice
  • SL recalled everything that he did during his time as a fierce corpse
  • although xxc and a-qing’s souls were too damaged to return to a body, with time and care there is a possibility they can recover and pass on peacefully!
  • wen ning was at dafan mt. immediately postres because through their connection he heard wwx’s command to the corpses in mo manor to “wake up.” he immediately threw aside his chains, broke out of his dungeon, and started making his way towards where he sensed wwx was
  • the lookout towers referenced in the BM arc of cql were created by jgy after becoming CC to provide cultivation aid to remote or very poor locations that most sects wouldn’t want anything to do with. even if the people had no money, the jin sect paid for them. the lookouts towers were manned by whatever sect was in the area so the responsibility was spread evenly (if they come up again we’ll see how true this turned out to be)
  • sect anger over these lookout towers was the excuse given that jin rusong was assassinated
  • when wwx encountered the head of nmj, he did not intend to use Empathy but was sort of sucked into it with the strength of nmj’s resentment and his urge to tell someone about what happened to him. because wwx’s soul was in his paperman, his body could not protect him against this energy and he was sent into Empathy
  • jgy’s mother was well-educated, literate, and a talented musician. she taught him in preparation for being recognized when he got older. after she passed away, meng yao went to koi tower as a young teenager(?). the day he asked to be recognized, it was jzx’s birthday. this was the first time he was kicked down the steps
  • i doubt the cql sunshot campaign lasted more than six months or maybe a year, but in the novel it drags on for what sounds like 2-3 years
  • wwx speculates that nmj chose to become jgy’s sworn brother in order to attain some level on influence on him. he didn’t like or trust jgy but as jgy was no longer his subordinate he felt he had no other way to keep an eye on him
  • not carrying one’s sword is a breach of etiquette compared to not wearing formal clothes at a formal event
  • qin su died instantly upon being stabbed because the dagger was cursed and full of resentful energy

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i thought maybe i’d love the novel or maybe i’d despise it and find it hard to get through, but actually this experience is very much like reading that terrible pride and prejudice fanfiction book in that i look forward to consuming it with the most primal malicious glee i am capable of so i can just tear it to pieces

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on ch 20/100-something. the plot is boring. like i know the cql postres plot was a mess but the novel is not that much better. sure, a lot more is explained, but who cares? its a weird little ghost story. we’re here for relationships and character development and right now they both suck. the romance is terrible. something exciting better happen soon. can we meet wen ning. can jc come back? it’s been days of travelling together and wwx STILL doesn’t know that lwj knows it’s him. they just. dont talk to each other! im going to scream

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novel highlights pt.1 (ch. 1-15)

explanations/details for drama-only fans

  • lan clan robes have protection arrays stitched into the inner lining so cultivators wearing the clothes would have an ever-present passive defense system against ghosts/demons
  • the two men (in the novel, the group of people) wwx met in ep2 complaining about the faulty compass of evil were cultivators who didn’t come from a wealthy clan. wwx thought the compass might have been faulty because it was only the first edition of the compass, and he was killed before he could release a better version
  • wei wuxian headed to dafan mountain immediately after ressurecting to night-hunt for spiritual power/a ghost to control, and along the way had been exhuming corpses to (unsuccessfully) harvest resentful energy
  • the stone goddess was just a weird-shaped rock that was imbued with power over centuries of wishing on it. the goddess granted wishes at the cost of the wisher’s souls. the dancing woman from ep2 danced and posed like the goddess because her soul had been eaten and her father had wished for it to be returned, and it was returned after being affected by the goddess
  • the compass was not faulty, but failed pick up the goddess because she was not an evil demon or monster but. well. a goddess
  • wwx had to use his flute/demonic cultivation because regular cultivation was ineffective against her
  • female lan cultivators live in a different part of cloud recesses so that’s an easy excuse as to why we never see them. but they DO exist
  • nmj and nhs are half-siblings with different mothers
  • the author specifies that the story is meant to be ahistorical and unresearched fantasy, which is why she can play fast and lose with ancient traditions like courtesy names
  • wwx used paperman techniques to give other students (nhs) answers during tests in return for nhs copying the principles for him
  • it was straight porn in the novel and gay porn in the drama which really gives different meanings to lwj’s accusation of shamelessness and wwx’s assertion that there was nothing to be ashamed about
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