This episode gives me the tingles. *Big smile*. Although things took a slightly different “orientation” towards the end, I think almost every lady would like to be romanced like that.
YQ and Nic are rushing to one of their outlets which is conducting a sale. With her hands full, Nic reaches for her handphone in her coat and holds it to her ear while she answers one call after another. The second stops her in her track. A high school friend, Chang Mei Mei announces she’s getting a divorce.
Signs of premature aging #3: When the rate of divorce surpasses that of marriage among your friends.
YQ shows up to comfort her friend whose husband cheated on her despite being hard pressed for time while Nic waits for her. There’s an interesting montage where YQ likens how girls may fight over a man just like they would over a pair of good shoes at a sale – the million dollar question is: Is it worth it?
DR is tipped for a promotion but looks glum instead of happy. His staff, Taylor points out helpfully that his worries about a transfer might mean that he is reluctant to be away from a certain someone (Maggie). However the only girl occupying his mind right now – YQ is very busy and cuts short his phone call unceremoniously.
The sale ended and YQ is grateful for Nic’s efficiency which ensures they get off work earlier than expected. Nic gets her a pair of new comfy-looking slippers when she complaints about her aching legs. Even better, he slips them on her feet thoughtfully and the fact that he actually knows her size impresses her.
The next morning, Nic gives her a wake-up call. She’s flattered by his attention and in her heart craves being protected and cared for. Only problem is, she’s still unsure if she’s misreading his actions. She tries calling DR for consultation but this time she gets cut off by DR who is busy dealing with the fallout of a cancelled flight.
After the last of the irate passengers has dispersed, DR sits down for a quick shut-eye. Maggie thoughtfully offers him a neck pillow and a bottle of water. When he thanks her, she waves off his thanks but declares bluntly that her objective is to get him slowly addicted -- to her!
It’s raining cats and dogs and YQ looks on enviously as considerate boyfriends show up with umbrellas to pick up their respective girlfriends. When cornered by Henry and Lala who offer her a ride, Nic comes to her rescue and she gladly accepts to avoid being stuck in a potentially awkward three’s a company situation. YQ thanks him but he shrugs it off and tells her to call for him whenever she needs him. OMG. Nic is *Love*. Although I ship DR with YQ, right now Nic is pushing all the right buttons for me. YQ is trying hard to suppress her emotions, chanting to herself that he’s only being kind…(totally understand that girl…I was shrieking to myself as well).
YQ returns to find her room crowded. Her chatterbox of a sister, Mei Qing is rummaging through her closet for clothes and grumbling aloud to her daughter and nephew. Apparently their sister-in-law has soiled her clothes again and is in need for some new clothes. It seems to be an open secret that the sister-in-law is always hankering after YQ’s clothes. Even her brother, Guan Qing has no qualms in asking her a favor – he wants YQ to ask DR to upgrade his mother-in-law’s seat. YQ takes it all in her stride and affectionately but firmly insists that GuanQing contacts DR himself.
After her brother’s family has left, the sisters have a heart to heart talk whereby they discuss the merits of rich vs poor. MeiQing feels a man possessing wealth and power is a much better catch while YQ thinks a man who has the confidence and skills also have their own charms, for example DR. MeiQing latches on this and pesters her about her curious relationship with DR, which YQ denies vehemently. Noting that her sibling’s relationships with their other halves seem to deteriorate as they age, YQ reflects that it might not be a bad idea to go for a younger man.
At work, YQ is having trouble concentrating as Nic continues to bombard her with his charms. Gosh I’m getting butterflies in my stomach just watching Nic work his mojo on YQ. It’s no wonder that YQ practically runs off to take her call to escape his searing gazes and steady her palpitating heart. It’s DR asking her out for dinner and she calms down somewhat at his voice.
Over dinner, YQ confides to DR about Nic and her doubts. She could not tell whether he’s genuinely interested in her because she cannot sense the slightest anxiety, uneasiness or anticipation from him. She believes that love happens in a particular moment. DR points out that her previous relationships are hardly supportive of her theory. She in turn scorns his analytical approach to love, arguing that he’s not had much success either. YQ notes that they always seem to be in a similar situation – when he’s dating, she’s not and vice versa – which DR sums up as the reason they kept missing out on each other. Awkward. LOL.
Anyway, they are interrupted when Maggie calls DR insisting to be present as well. The ladies get off on a wrong foot, as Maggie manages to irritate YQ by calling her YQ jie in their first meeting! Dinner is an awkward affair as Maggie keeps intruding on their conversation. Intentional or not, that girl is really getting on my nerve. She’s just so annoying. Gosh I may be biased but when she affects that childish tone in her speech…I have goose bumps. She’s talking like she’s twelve!
The final straw comes when Maggie coyly rests her head on DR’s shoulder. This latest public display of affection is too much and YQ excuses herself. She vents her frustration in the washroom. Not content to be outdone, she takes up Nic’s offer to call him up when she needs him…
Nic does show up to pick her up after dinner and DR couldn’t help feeling jealous. Nic’s presence again reduces YQ to a blubbering mess – his not so subtle offer to go on a holiday together, his hand inching tantalizingly against hers. YQ tries to get a hold of herself by appearing unaffected and offers him taxi fare in return for his favor. Her confusion intensifies by his hurt expression and his admission that he enjoys her company. Is she reading too much into his words?
On the other hand, DR sends Maggie home only to discover that there’s been a break-in in the neighborhood. Maggie plays the damsel in distress card while DR offers to check things out. He’s about to take his leave when he’s sure the coast is clear but Maggie has other ideas. Powerless against her pleading eyes, he promises to stay until she’s fallen asleep. Seeing how he’s uncomfortable on the couch, Maggie timidly offers him the bed. When he rejects her offer, she asks him tentatively if he’s gay. LOL. Alert now, DR denies.
She asks him bluntly why he’s so passive that a girl has to take the initiative to ask him out, hold hands – does he expect the girl to initiate a kiss too? He puts it down to being an age thing – a habit of overanalyzing things. She tells him not to think and leans in for a kiss….OOooo. DR does not reject nor does he respond. His overworked mind is confused and he projects a mental S.O.S.
As if in answer, his phone rings and he takes it eagerly despite Maggie’s pleas to ignore it. It’s YQ calling up as is their habit to compare notes. She offers a flattering opinion on his new lady love and asks about his progress. When DR unwittingly reveals he’s still at Maggie’s house, YQ gets majorly pissed because she thinks he’s jerking her around pretending to be all confused when he’s actually busy getting laid. She hangs up abruptly without giving him the chance to explain himself.
YQ realizes she’s upset but doesn’t understand why. She deludes herself into thinking that she’s only worried about losing their bet. She texts him HER alleged progress but gets even more upset at herself for lying. DR reads her message – she’s at the stage of holding hands with Nic – and leaves Maggie when he thinks she’s finally fallen asleep.
Maggie opens her eyes after he leaves and stares despondently at a list she’s made. She cheers herself to work harder for sake of her happiness.
This is her list:
- · Good looking, but not too handsome.
- · Has a regular job but not rich.
- · Good temper, just like an older brother.
- · Shy. Not skilled in tackling girls.
- · Works at the same place so they could be together all the time.
- · Not too complicated family.
- · Marries her within two years.
At times like this, I can’t bring myself to hate her. Sure she’s annoying but that’s because she at the other end of this love…er quadrangle. She hasn’t done anything nasty…yet and she’s only being true to her feeling which is more than I can say for our OTP.
Next two scenes happen almost at once – both leading to two major decisions being made.
Taotao barges into DR’s room begging for a new bike. She also teases him about his night out. The little sister offers him some sound advice – “If he doesn’t love the girl, do not accept her just because she’s ok. Be honest and tell her truthfully to spare each other any hurt.” At work, DR is contemplating taking her advice when Maggie comes up to him, hysterical because her mum is involved in an accident. DR calms her down and sends her away to her mother.
The General Manager has requested that YQ takes over another District Chief’s workload – the previous Chief has resigned suddenly due to family troubles – which requires her to work outstation (in TaiZhong) for a few days. YQ reluctantly agrees. Outside the washroom, she overhears a couple of girls bitching about the improbability of her relationship with Nic, which on the contrary triggers her determination to prove them wrong. She strides up to Nic and loudly announces that he is to accompany her for a business trip to TaiZhong and adds for good measure that he is to pick her up at her house. As predicted, the office erupts with whispers and curious stares. YQ struts off smugly, especially when Nic tells her that her coffee is late today because he’s in a rush indicating all too clearly he’s still very much interested….
That night, she is busy packing her luggage when DR calls. He confides that he has decided to date Maggie, conceding that love might be a “moment” thing after all… having missed the moment to reject her. YQ tells DR about her upcoming business trip with Nic. DR tries to offer her advice, which only serves to irk YQ who thinks that just because he’s not appreciative of her does not mean that she’s “mediocre”. LOL. The girl is so defensive! She’s bothered by his declaration but stubbornly chooses to ignore it.
At TaiZhong, YQ’s assertiveness at work is a virtue in Nic’s eyes. YQ is touched when he rushed off in the rain to get her handbag and her favourite coffee. When he asks casually if they are officially off-duty, YQ could not hide her disappointment. She immediately perks up when she realizes he means to take her out to dinner!!
They reach a crowded food street and he grabs onto her hand. She hesitates but he declares, “Just in case I lose you…” He offers to foot the bill claiming that off duty, he’s the man and she’s not his superior. YQ lets her guard down and could not help but be affected by his contagious enthusiasm as they spend more time together. She wants to confirm if he’s really pursuing her but falters at the last moment.
When they are about to reach their hotel rooms, he asks that she slows down because he wants to immerse himself in the joy of spending time with her a little longer. He even offers her Whisky in his room. Gosh…he’s so smooth. LOL. YQ scrambles to change into her sexy underwear.
Over Whisky, he tells her how he wants to protect her, never once thinking of her as an older sister but as someone who needs to be protected. Asked if he’s actually confessing his feeling, the moment is interrupted by a knock on the door.
And not a moment too soon. A young man barges in and reveals that he’s GAY. He accuses Nic of manipulating the affection of his superiors to further his ambition. Shocked and hurt, YQ runs out to the streets.
Meanwhile, DR waits for Maggie at her house. This would be the first time he’s ever shown some initiative and interest, so Maggie is particularly pleased. However, DR’s phone rings just as they are making their way up to her house. It’s YQ and she’s crying desperately to him on the phone, unloading all her hurt, her fears and frustrations.
She’s surprised to find DR showing up unexpectedly at her door some time later. DR comforts her in a way only someone who really knows you inside out can -- He enumerates all her qualities and points out her faults gently. She’s feeling better already.
Charms of a Mature Lady #3: Having a friend who will be upset for your upset.
Despite my harshness on Maggie, I do not think she’s wrong to pursue her happiness. On the other hand, Nic is just plain incorrigible…prying on YQ’s loneliness and toying with her feelings. In the end, YQ’s observations were correct after all - she cannot sense the slightest anxiety, uneasiness or anticipation from him – all of which should be present if the guy is in love with her. I totally didn’t expect him to be this manipulative as you can see from the way I gush over him at the beginning. I thought this would just be a puppy love because I do know that Nic is not the second male lead in this drama and figured they would break up later due to personal difference. Sigh.