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Date: 2017-06-20 11:29 pm (UTC)
maat_seshat: Winged Maat sitting (Default)
From: [personal profile] maat_seshat
Hmm. I think you're placing Jingrui within "normal society" more than I would. We see him rhapsodizing often over the value of freedom: when Xie Yu starts to scold him for missing a festival upon his return to Jinling, when he thinks idealistically that his father has remained independent of factional entanglement, when he tries to get Mei Changsu to stay out of politics. The army is...about as tied down as you can get: Meng Zhi survives at his post before Mei Changsu's arrival because everyone knows he's loyal to no one but the emperor, and then after MCS's arrival because he's loyal enough to Lin Shu to follow his plans without understanding their effects. Even at the end, once Jingrui has acknowledged that true freedom is an illusion, he still makes his own choices: he won't criticize his mother for refusing to present Xie Yu's confession, but he won't agree with her either.

By the end of the show, Jingrui has so many connections that he can't remain unambiguously loyal to a single one: he kneels to his Zhuo family, then he goes to Southern Chu for his father, promises to remain in touch with Yujin (and keeps the promise), and finally comes back to Liang for his mother, but he doesn't go collect Xie Yu's remains and can't speak for the Xie family in the final banquet scene, because his status is too ambiguous. He doesn't have the singular tie that binds Meng Zhi and Lin Shu to the Chiyan army, or Jingyan to the Liang realm, or even the cleanly split tie that makes Nihuang equally Mu and Lin (and nothing else), and he doesn't seem to be looking for it either: he's loyal to individuals and to principles, but I think he fits the rootless heroism of the jianghu world more than the structure of the army.

(Basically, you just posted really interesting meta on Dreamwidth, so I'm engaging! Feel free to tell me to shush on your thinking aloud. :) )
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