Golden Stage


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The notorious imperial court lackey and the meritorious military general were well-known for their mutual dislike, a pair of arch-enemies set in stone. Who could have foreseen the unexpected change in the winds of heaven: the general injured on the battlefield, both legs disabled, and even forced by the emperor to marry his nemesis.

With one marriage edict, two people with mutual hostility are forced to marry and live under the same roof. Yet after these long days together, they come to the realization that this fellow is not truly devoid of any saving grace/unattainable and high out of reach.

Associated Names
One entry per line
Golden Terrace
Hoàng Kim Đài/Đài Hoàng Kim
Huáng Jīn Tái
หวงจินไถ ปรปักษ์เร้นรัก
Related Series
Fight the Landlord, Fall in Love (Spin-Off)
Devoted To The Stand-In (Spin-Off)
Sha Po Lang (15)
Qiang Jin Jiu (11)
Peerless (8)
The Fourteenth Year of Chenghua (5)
Thousand Autumns (5)
Those Years In Quest Of Honour Mine (4)
Recommendation Lists
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  5. Done/Ongoing - Danmei -UwU-

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189 Reviews

New casmonido
Jan 27, 2024
Status: c45
It's very sweet, but I am bored; there is no conflict when it comes to their love life.
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Nov 04, 2020
Status: Completed
I just realized I never left a review of Golden Stage, despite translating the damn thing. (No comment on my own quality, but I'm glad people like it.)

First of all, this is predominantly a romance novel, and an icky-sticky, sickeningly sweet one, too. That is a Very Good Thing, in my opinion, because finding couples that actually communicate, have distinct personalities, are balanced in power, and don't have dogblood drama between them is horrifically rare. The plot isn't tacked onto the story, either; to say that the romance aspect... more>> overpowers the plot aspect would be a lie, as both are intertwined too heavily for one to happen without the other.

If I absolutely had to find a complaint, the side-characters weren't as developed as the main characters, though that's also why the novel is mercifully short as opposed to the 200+ chapters that a lot of other novels are, so... eh. It's fine, to me.

In terms of translating this, it was a slight pain in the butt, because the language is very complex. All the poem verses and complicated terms used were absolutely not exaggerated, trust me. And, now that I'm translating and reading things that are less complicated, it's really glaringly obvious how college-grad level this is in terms of writing. I chose a hell of a novel for an intermediate translator, hoo boy. That speaks volumes for how good of a prose writer CWBB is, at least. <<less
176 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Dec 02, 2019
Status: Completed
This is the novel I was searching for all along~!

It starts with an assassination attempt on Fu Shen, the MC, who is a famed general coming from a family of famous military leaders. Unfortunately, it leaves him crippled. This serves two purposes: one is to show the background and give a sense of the ambivalent views surrounding the MC, revealing the unspoken side of the current political situation. While also serving as a factor to investigate into later (I don't think that's a spoiler since it happens in the first... more>> few paragraphs).

The emperor takes advantage of this, and as a way to limit and control the power the MC has, he forces a marriage edict upon Fu Shen and Yan Xiaohan, an infamous court lackey who is of the "Flying Dragon Guard" (I know the emperor did this without good intentions, but thank you emperor, you a real living god for us shippers!), since everyone thinks that the main leads are on bad terms with each other.


However, this is not true, and it is revealed that the MC and ML were quite close to each other in their teenage years, and even started developing mutual feelings for each other. By then, they had gone through all sorts of adventures together, and established a firm bond. However due to misunderstandings that were never explained, they had a falling out, and then the MC left for the war. Which continues to the present day, and they never bothered to remedy it. The MC is not mad at the ml, he's just... disappointed. He has long since accepted that the ML has different priorities in this life, but still believes that the ML can be better than this. But on the other hand, the ML thinks his lowly and scheming self is not worthy of the righteous and conscientious MC. Seriously kids, communication is the best prevention for drama. But don't worry, it all works out in the end.



Luckily, they gradually warm up to each other, and tensions are smoothed out in the day-to-day interactions between the two while ML is taking care of the MC. It's too sweet, and funny, especially that poem in one of the earlier chapters! I'm always grinning like there's no tomorrow.


The way they met is literally straight out of a drama


An appreciating person chucks a flower at our MC at a parade procession, who dodges, but ends up on the lapel of... who else??? Our flippin' ML of course! Who then returns the flower to the MC, in what can only be described as, with a touch of flirtatiousness. And mc's reaction is hilarious when he realizes the type of flower he "threw".



On that misunderstanding that was not explained: By around chapter 17 the MC meets a woman, and in flashbacks, what drove that initial rift between them is revealed. The emperor was chasing after the wife (you guessed it! It's the same woman as the one the mc's currently talking to in the present) and child of a suspected traitor. While on the run, they bump into MC, who along with a group of friends decides to shield them, and the MC hides and takes care of them in secret. However, the ml, unbeknownst of the MC, had followed him to the hideout, and then puts the woman under custody. When the MC discovers, he feels immensely devastated and betrayed (kind of an understatement). He had originally planned to gift the ML with a jade pendant, but upon the betrayal, he shatters it, an action that symbolizes breaking off all ties between them. With that, he leaves for war. But, hear me out, it's later revealed that the ML had helped the mother-son pair by smuggling them out, and he had kept and treasured that broken jade all this time.


It's reminiscent of sha po lang (maybe it's the politics, or the power couple dynamic, the very clever and resourceful main leads, the overall vibe, or a combination of all of the aforementioned), and often times, I feel like the times we get to see Fu Shen and Yan Xiaohan showing their rare gentle sides towards each other, just casts this soft golden glow in my chest, like mellow and honeyed candlelight, creating this mood that's nostalgic of an all-encompassing warmth. Unspoken thoughts are conveyed in a gaze, if only you care to seek them out. These moments of calm paint the quiet scenes with serenity and comfort, like a being enveloped in a familiar embrace (descriptions not too shabby, eh?), and it has all the things I look for in a novel. The protagonists are on equal footing with each other, no overbearing and dominating characters here.

The mc's disability does not make him inferior to the ml.

There is court intrigue, but not in stifling amounts. And that's good, since plot-driven novels appeal to me.

The translator is also the absolute greatest! They update very efficiently and always make sure to add lots of definitions of the various phrases used and cultural tidbits at the end, I just love it when translators take the time to do that! 加油 mx. translator!

What's more, 黄金台 has an audio drama adaptation! Only one episode has been released so far on 猫耳FM, but it's close to an hour long. The ending song is also really soothing. I cannot recommend this enough!

Oh my gosh, I literally shrieked and flailed like a fish out of water when I saw how many updates there were since I've been gone! Forgoing punctuation, like who needs it when your favorite series has updated??? <<less
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Jul 05, 2020
Status: Completed
Rating: 6/5

Who would've ever thought that pair of foes from way back when, who made a godawful racket in the Court hall and couldn't wait to use their hu tablets to beat the other on his dog head, would today be cooing sweet nothings as they snuggled up in front of a fire within a damaged temple? Clearly, the ways of the world were truly difficult to anticipate. Live long enough and one would see all sorts of miracles.

One word: masterpiece. To be honest, I read so many books... more>> that I consider few masterpieces, but this one is among them. This is one of the rare stories where you don't have to over analyze why characters did this and that, what they feel in certain scenes and what they think. It's all done by author so you can just relax and enjoy the ride.

You don't have to retaliate, but you must never forget who's hurt you in the past. One needs to know pain before they can live a bit longer."

Fu Shen is the general and marquis of Northen Yan, and a very loyal subject to the nation. But it all begins and ends when Fu Shen was escorting Tatar diplomatic envoy through Blue Sand pass, and an assassination attempt and a boulder crush his legs and leave him disabled.

The Yuantai era Emperor thus considered it lucky that Fu Shen suffered this injury as his family has been on the rise for many years, starting with his grandfather, father and uncle.

To completely cut his family line and leave Fu Shen's younger (useless) brother to inherit Duke of Ying title, and to literally make the Duke of Jing Ning Fu Shen become useless, the Emperor issued a decree: a marriage sanction between Fu Shen and his court blood hound Yan Xiaohan (Divine Martial Army General and Flying Dragon Guard Royal Inspector Envoy).

Except everyone knows that these two have been arguing back and forth on court and are enemies. But little do they know that before that, there was a friendship that ended with betrayal.

Yan XIaohan takes the opportunity to be married to Fu Shen for one reason - Emperor won't stop until he marries off Fu Shen, so it would be better for Fu Shen if it was someone he knew.

Fu Shen is very proud man who has been through wars for 5 years and this is all a defeat one after another. Forcing him to be useless, to be married, to cut his own family line, his legs... It all takes heavy toll on him. But that doesn't stop him from doing his utmost best to help others, stay as much positive as he can be and to get used to his new life.

It seemed that, in his impression, he'd never seen Yan Xiaohan get actually mad. The man was normally restrained and silently endured things, and when there was fire, it wouldn't be directed at him. Fu Shen had a flash of realization that he was always the one to be coaxed, believing himself to have nothing to be ashamed of in the world and in people's hearts, eternally waiting for others to admit their mistakes and apologize. After that, he would either forgive them for his own benefit, or ruthlessly cut ties with them. Even if he was doing the coaxing, he never lowered himself down, merely using honeyed words and bantered jokes to mediate things.

But when there came a day that the one accommodating would no longer accommodate, and the one indulging would no longer indulge, then he would know how it felt to be discarded.

Yan Xiaohan is relentless in perusing, he rose up to his position on his own effort but also because he's adopted son of favored palace Eunuch, so many look down on him and scorn him, thinking he rose in position via connection. Little do they know how ruthless, cunning, clever and bloodthirsty he can be. But for Fu Shen, he will be his everything.

These few months, he had never tried to exhort Fu Shen, didn't dare to prod at his scars, and frequently consoled himself: it was only that Fu Shen couldn't go off to battle again, or walk freely like a regular person again... he just had to pay with his legs, and that was much better than losing his life in Blue Sand Pass. But in this instant, his irrational response was finally acknowledged on his behalf, and all that unfettered optimism was a sham. He was actually upset about this on the inside, actually... very sorry for it.

Do I have to mention this book has the most beautiful marriage scene and amazing title drops where it's needed. The whole book is a beautiful combination of crying and laughing your heart out because it's just so wonderfully written you will attach yourself to these fools and will barely be able to let go.

"Call me that again, and I may just give up the darkness and turn towards the light for you."

(Times Fu Shen made Yan Xiaohan speechless (Yan Xiaohan: "..... " <- like that) = n times)

"However." Fu Shen smiled, using his fan to hold her away by the chest. "Compared to my dear wife, you fall a bit short."

The gods had come to write a new twist. Everyone turned their heads simultaneously to look towards the 'dear wife'.

Yan Xiaohan: "..... "|

Not to mention, this is really slow burn, nothing is forced, consent is important and they are adorable. The hugs, the cheek kisses, everything... they are so sweet and they give each other time (also they switch).

Daring to love, daring to hate, directly repaying both kindness and enmity; no one can tie you up aside from yourself.

And one of my fav quotes:


"When you went to battle, there was nothing I could do." Yan Xiaohan's tone was consolatory. "Fortunately, I became the Royal Inspector Envoy afterwards, and when the Emperor was sanctioning a marriage for you, the very first person he considered was me. You see, this is what's called 'if there's a will, there's a way to crack open even metal and stone'." "..... "

Fu Shen couldn't stop himself from being blunt. "What if he hadn't sanctioned it?"

Yan Xiaohan looked at him, then smiled. "I'm not a big-hearted gentleman like you, Marquis. Since I had done everything I could to take the Envoy position, even if the Emperor didn't allow it, I'd set about stealing you back. If the Court lackey isn't maiming the loyalist, how could I then be worthy of the gossiping masses of the world?"

and another one!

Yan Xiaohan swiftly grabbed him, lowering his voice. "Marquis, can you have your people step back a bit?"
"Hm? What are you doing?"
"I want to kiss you. Right now. I can't wait."
"... Open your eyes and look around. Would that be appropriate?"
"You said yourself that whatever I wanted, you would give. I want to kiss you, " Yan Xiaohan replied bluntly.


Please read Golden stage, it's fun, it has wonderful main couple, lovely side characters, extremely good plot and roller coaster of emotions!



Main Characters: 6/5 - they are so wonderful, they are everything a couple needs to be, and everything I have been looking for in this kind of genre. Equality and respect!

Side characters: 4.5/5 - fantastic cast, many will make you laugh! (some will make you draw out knives to stab...)

Story: 6/5 flawless, extremely great work, no plot holes, linear, many years go pass.

Humor & Angst: 6/5 everything you ever wanted and never knew you needed until now! <<less
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Jul 29, 2020
Status: Completed

This is akin to finding a gold nugget the size of your fist while cleaning up a ditch in your backyard dug by your dog--cough the annals of translated novels are missing a gem like this--

... more>>

I simply love it when novels don't pidgeonhole their characters into juvenile heteronormative top/bottom roles.


That said, overall novel rating is a 4, but due to the excellent translation, upgrading this to 5.

This one is very similar to one of my top favorites [Sha Po Lang] (and pretty obvious that the author was "heavily" inspired by SPL), but with a lot more focus on the romance with less complex politics. This one's biggest flaw is also its strength: the romance/relationship development focus and super sweet husbandos.

Due to the romance focus, the side characters very much fell into the background and many times only appeared purely to progress the main plot. Nevertheless, it's a good book and highly recommended read.


There's plenty of straightforward confessions, dog-food-like, tooth-rotting fluff, grand gestures of romance, and so on. But I really would have liked to see more connection between the transitions and the different plotlines, as well as the MC's sister. I think the emotional moments would have been more meaningful if the ephiphanies were related to more than just the main leads' romance.


I have to admit, I hesitated starting this because the preface seemed to be very dense and difficult to get into, but right past the first few chapters, the ball gets rolling, so don't put it off like I did!

The translation is one of the best I've ever read for ancient historical novels and I extremely appreciate the efforts the translator made to make a historical novel enjoyable in English without forcing readers to memorize 9000 cases of pinyin inserts.

On the translation alone, this gets 5 stars. <<less
39 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Jan 03, 2020
Status: c26
This is a precious hidden gem among the historical themed BL novels.

As the synopsis already says, it's about a general who survived an ambush and is forced to marry his 'enemy' per royal decree. Despite him being crippled, he tries to maintain his independence as best as possible.

The story is intriguing without trying to flaunt its dramatic moments, and both the pacing and writing style are very natural. You will not find the typical comic/anime-ish writing of most Chinese BL writers, but rather a work that takes its themes seriously.... more>> There's no petty revenge p*rn involved; instead, we have elements of mystery, well-rounded characters, and fitting amounts of exposition.

The MC is righteous and popular and prefers life on the battlefield while the ML is a cunning, opportunistic official (and leader of a specialized military group) who works for the emperor. Naturally, they clash and disagree on topics of morality and honor. And yet, the author chose a very interesting dynamic we rarely see in Ancient China BL novels: there's no power play involved between them. Both are equal in intelligence, skill, and self-confidence, and they get to keep those throughout the story. I always look forward to their conversations and the direction they will take each time.

The romance is authentic, beautifully written, and neither too fast nor unnecessarily dragged on. We are given just the right amount of it, and every warm interaction between the MC and ML feels incredibly rewarding.

Lastly, the translations are high-quality as well. Please give this one a try! <<less
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Feb 06, 2020
Status: c32
This is a really excellent novel, one of the best Asian novels that I've read. The plot is interesting, the characters are well rounded and intelligent, and while the romance is front and center, the plot, setting and history are really well drawn and engaging. This isn't a sloppy plot that's just there as background for the romance.

The novel has so far avoided all the annoying tropes of both BL and straight romance novels. There's no lack of consent or r*pey behavior. Bullying is not treated as flirtation. No one... more>> gets treated as a pet or possession. No one is a harmful stereotype. The main couple have a believable history and their relationship makes sense. They treat each other with respect, especially once misunderstandings of the past are cleared up. No one gets bullied into changing s*xual preference (one of the tropes that annoys me most besides lack of consent, considering the obscenity of conversion 'therapy').

Its just so refreshing! Fingers crossed that it stays this good as it continues, but given the way the characters are portrayed, I'll be surprised if it changes.

There's only one thing that baffles me, and that's the people who gave this a 1 or a 2. That's inexplicable to me. The three who voted 3, I'm chalking up to not liking politics and such. There's a lot of politics and forensic investigation, which I personally find really interesting, but get that not everyone does. it's necessary, though. These are important people with real lives in this world, with all that entails.

The 1 and 2's though... So far off the mark. Its sure not the translation, which is excellent. The only thing I can think of is that this isn't explicit to date, although it will probably get more so. If you're looking for p*rn without plot or a r*pey ML pinning down a character who looks and acts like a boy, this isn't the book for you. <<less
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Jun 30, 2020
Status: Completed
This novel is such a gem!

Yan Xiaohan way of love is tender. Fu Shen way of love is fierce. I LOVE THEM

It's very endearing how they open up as a couple, it almost a slow burn with sweetness all over there.
You will found that their affection come so naturally.
They compromise, they talk, they banter, taking care of each other, have equal footing as a couple and in their professional field
It's one of pairing in whole danmei world who really shoulder to shoulder. THEY ACTUALLY SEKE! SUCH A... more>> RARE GEM!
And their banter always so hilarious, hahahaaa. <<less
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Jul 30, 2020
Status: Completed
I liked this novel. Let's get this out of the way.

The ML lead and the MC were quite loveable, both with their own distinctive personalities and a great synergy. They care for each other a lot and each moment while they are together is filled with tender gentle feelings. So if you are looking for a relatively easy to read novel in between all the angst, go ahead and give this novel a try. I guess the only thing I would have liked is to establish their interactions pre-relationship a... more>> bit more, but that is personal preference.

However, the reason why I picked up the book was because of the premise, expecting some interesting twists and turns. And while it wasn't bad by any means, it felt a bit lacking in tension and just overall flow of the narrative. Some moments were pretty deus ex machina-ish, which is a pet peeve of mine. Not enough to ruin the novel, but enough for me to sarcastically roll my eyes at certain moments.

Nevertheless I still finished it and I still enjoyed my time with it. <<less
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Mar 09, 2021
Status: c79
I think the story line is a little bit boring, I personally like a relationship that develops throughout the story, but the couple in this story got together at the beginning and were a married couple living in harmony facing the issues together, so romance-wise there is no plot.

I don't like r*pe stories or s*upid misunderstanding that happen one after the other, but at least those stories have ups and downs, this one was too tame, I think the writer should have written the story in a way that they... more>> fall for each other after the marriage, but in this story they already have a hidden crush on each other from the beginning, so if you want to see a dramatic story, this isn't it.

and don't be fooled by the summary description like me: they are not arch-enemies, it's just a rumor among people, and from the very beginning of the novel they trust each other and care about each other the most. So it's not enemies-turning-to-lovers type of books. It's two people who care for each other dearly then they are forced to marry each other, so they decide to sleep with each other as well.

I Liked ML at the very beginning of the book, he was charismatic, scary and ambitious, but suddenly all those ambitions were gone, and he didn't go to work unless he was summoned, and at the end he was portrayed as lonely, cold and he could only sit at home and miss his husband. I wish he could still be the same person while being in love. MC is supposed to be a righteous character, but he easily kills an unborn baby with causing a woman to suffer miscarriage. I don't mind gray and realistic characters but story kept emphasizing how righteous and noble he was, and how this is one of the reasons ML loves him but in reality he wasn't. <<less
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May 20, 2020
Status: c79
This is really really good. They are equal, mature and really sweet to each other. No r*pe here no dismissal here. They not only love each other but respect each other and this shows. There's no such thing as gong or shou here because they are reversible. It's just love all through. The plot is great too.
11 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Mar 01, 2020
Status: c38
It is... God so gorgeous. Characters are fleshed out perfectly, author writes everything with detail, while refraining from clichés, translator is amazing and explains everything you might be curious about in detail in footnotes...

Im in awe about how this novel is not more popular. Truly brilliant one, I hope translator does not drop it, because I already managed to love everything from the first chapter.
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Aug 07, 2022
Status: c54
Extremely overrated.

the romance doesn't have any tension. It's not really an issue for a romance not to have drama because some novels do have couples that are together from the start or that get together very smoothly and those books can still be very fun to read. But it's problematic because the novel tries to insert drama and tension with like the complicated backstory and all of the main couple but it's really not reflected in their behavior? Like it feels super smooth and easy for the main couple with... more>> like little to no emotional duress or stress or anything. Like oh we have this awful thing between us but it's all good before, and it's all good after. They flirt so much it feels like there wasn't any drama whatsoever between them and they're falling in love anyway until the author mentions and explains the incident and it resolves a problem that I didn't even sense between the couple before this whole incident. Like huh? What was the point of that incident then... ? It's just meh.


like the whole backstory about how they first got along very well 7 years ago and then YXH betrayed FS's trust and their fragile friendship broke apart. But it turns out YXH saved the people that FS wanted to save so FS gets over the whole issue or something. I'm just like huh... ? My issue with this story is that up to the point that the author had this whole scene, I didn't feel like FS even had a trust issue or any issue falling for YXH. Like yeah he wasn't like in looooove with YXH yet but it felt more like a normal process where his feelings were gradually becoming more romantic rather than him actively having a barrier against falling for YXH. And it's not like he became a whole lot more lovey dovey towards YXH after. How he was before he left was similar to how he was after he came back. He returned and they got married just like they agreed on before he left.


and then the storyline... honestly its abit random and the main couple are in a reactive state most of the time. Like things happen then the main couple finds out some new info and they react and then the issue is left behind. Then something new happens, they react and the issue is left behind. This process repeats over and over. And its like the main couple just gets new information thrown at them wherever they go and whatever they face and it doesn't seem like they're really doing anything with what they learn.


so like let's start with the first thing: the whole FS being attacked and crippled because of the emperor being paranoid. FS knows this and he knows the crown prince doesn't like him either. But he doesn't seem to plan for his future? Like the whole current emperor, the potential next emperor and how it affects FS and his army are briefly discussed with his 2nd in command when he returns to his base and then just left as it is. Then he plots against the empress and it's like a two for one because he brings down the empress and her brother is implicated by another issue. And it's said the crown prince won't hold on for long to his position and then again the issue is left as it is.

then the whole marriage between FS and YXH. The emperor wants YXH to take FS's authority in the army so he gets YXH to marry FS. But after that it's just not mentioned. Like the emperor just seems to let them get married and they all continue doing whatever it is they were doing before. FS retains his military authority, YXH remains as commander of the flying dragon guard and the emperor doesn't follow up with the whole plot to get FS to relinquish his authority.

and finally the whole miracle drug thing that gets YSM and Yang he xuan. It's super addictive and very mysterious and it's emergence is tied to FS's family's army. So it emerges in the capital, and then main couple catch it and then the whole investigation and follow up on the drug and whoever is behind it just seems to die out until the main couple travel out and then bump into it again and discover new info about it. Like... uh... ok? So they just left the whole issue behind even though they knows theres a mysterious person behind the whole incident until they randomly bumped into it again.


I feel like the flaws in the story are just covered up by the excellent prose. Like to be fair, it's written in a pretty grand and beautiful manner. But the story or the romance does not hold up at all. <<less
9 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Jun 12, 2020
Status: Completed
One of the best historical BL novel. As everyone said, MC and ML expressed their love equally; there is no shou or gong here. I enjoy reading stories in which the love development of main chara's are built on respect not on flesh.

The story is quite tragic but the author didn't detail much of those. Rather, she focused more on MC and ML interactions. Hence, The plot tension also is not really great to become a headache.
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May 17, 2020
Status: c66
This novel is just amazing, in the current bl climate where the relationships are almost always unbalanced this couple shine with how mature they are. They communicate with each other, they have patience with each other and actually show what it means to be in love with someone. I absolutely adore their dynamic. The plot itself is pretty interesting, it doesn't drag on and every chapter leaves you wanting for more. Kudos to the translators for doing such a wonderful job.
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May 15, 2019
Status: c26
The chemistry between MC and ML is really good. Not forceful at all. MC is a general whose legs got injured (almost unable to walk). ML is actually in love with MC long before but as his position as the emperor's right-hand lackey, he think it's ignoble compared to MC so he kept his feeling to himself. The emperor want to control MC's army so he force the two main characters (male/male) to get married (and also to make sure MC has no heir).

ML is a caring and devoting husband.... more>> He took care of MC most of the time and during the time they spent together, MC started to develop feeling (or maybe deepen) for ML as they have great interaction during their teenagers but misunderstanding happened so MC and ML always parted in bad terms and that's how other people saw it too.
There's no freaking drama about their relationship after they get together, only sweet and supporting stories.
Highly recommend! <<less
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Nov 17, 2021
Status: Completed
THIS NOVEL IS SOOOO GOOOOODD!!! It mainly focuses on the Main couple Fu Shen and Yan XiaoHan. They are both powerful figures of their time and upon arranged marriage they'll reunite again. They are each other's first love as well as love at first sight. Their time together is like healing therapy for readers. They are both mature and willing to take burdens for each other and a PERFECTLY HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP with no toxic.

I really loved the MC Yan XiaoHan. How he don't give a f*ck about anything except his... more>> love Fu Shen. He will destroy the whole country to protect him. A Badass character. Or a villain in love.

Even 5 stars aren't enough for this novel, the author did a great job. <<less
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Jun 15, 2020
Status: Completed
Rating: 4.7/5.0

I may be biased in this review because it's one of the earliest novel I've read, but I really liked it. The first two chapters may be a bit heavy and hard to understand, but luckily I didn't give up and kept reading and didn't drop this novel or I would have regretted so much.

Fu Shen and Yan Xiaohan are both very strong, clever and both have an admirable position in the court: one is a powerful general who sacrificed pretty much everything for the country, admired and loved... more>> by the people and the other one is "emperor's dog", his most trusted subject and feared by many. However I didn't feel like they were OP, it was just right.

Their relationship is basically: Friends>"Enemies"> Lovers and I loved this. Yan Xiaohan probably was the one who fell first and oh man, he pined so hard and didn't even want to say it (he's so me!!). But Fu Shen fell for him too and they love each other so deeply that it makes me cry... when will I have a love like theirs? (Never)

The interactions between Fu Shen and Yan Xiaohan and their non-explicit love scenes (even if the author didn't describe them, I could still feel the s*xual tension) were so heartwarming. I think it's one of those rare times I would have loved more romance instead of plot (even if the plot is already so little and the romance is a lot!). But with just 79 chapters I couldn't ask much


But a funny thing that it made me smile a lot is Fu Shen being papapa by his so called "wife" (and it was honestly the best thing actually).

No guys, THEY DON'T SWITCH, but it doesn't matter to me at all.

Maybe a thing that I didn't like was how the plot started to not be that interesting in the middle/ending part, but I was sugar coated by the main CP sweet moments, so I didn't mind that much... (I'm actually a horrible reviewer LMFAO). Usually I'm a plot>>>> person, but in this one... I failed I'm sorry TwT

Also... I honestly wanted to know more about the other characters... I can't be the only one who noticed that the little innocent Tang Guo had some interest in Shen Yi'ce???

"Tang Guo's eyes shone when he heard the words 'Doctor Shen', but after learning nothing had happened to him, he nodded expressionlessly."

I thought that there will be scenes between these two but nope. They disappeared... kinda sad tbh, they could've been such a cute second couple : (Thumbs up for Xiao Xun and Yu Qiaoting too, they had chemistry but nothing happened xD Xiao Xun disappeared too at some point...

This is the reason I didn't give the novel a solid 5 stars, they should have been developed more!! Luckily it's one of those novel that have a main CP that I really really love, otherwise I would have dropped it so quickly xD I'm a side characters lover!! <<less
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Feb 14, 2023
Status: Completed
"Besides, he wanted bedroom matters to be mutually consenting, and not a taken advantage of someone who was in a bad way."

Need I say more?

A man who's loyal to himself x a man who's loyal to the realm

... more>> The Emperor's cunning fox x an honest, fearless general

True power couple-ness is taking the sanctioned marriage that your Emperor put in place to cripple you, and using it in partnership to KICK ASS.

A nice, quick read - a simple, political story that keeps you interested, with a nicely developed, mature romance with amazing communication. The one misunderstanding that caused their 'arch rival' status in the first place is cleared up soon before their marriage, which is great. They have some of the best communication amongst the couples I've read; if they reach an impasse, they fight, come to understand one another better, sometimes might need to compromise, and move on - they never let misunderstandings fester and talk about it right away. I reckon most people would enjoy it, and it's a great way to dip your toes into the history/politics genre if that has never really been your thing. These two are so funny and sweet together! The real power couple. <<less
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Sep 14, 2022
Status: Completed
Definitely overrated

I was so excited to read this after reading all the reviews here but I guess I had too high expectations because I didn't enjoy this book.

Romance was good but the plot was so-so.

Since I loved sha po lang so much I thought I'd like this one too after I heard that both book were similar. But no it was very disappointing.

Definitely not worth the hype.
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May 18, 2021
Status: Completed
COMMUNICATION!!!!! That's what this novel had. Throughout their married life all they did was communicate and understand each other. They didn't get in the way of each other's jobs as they had full trust in the other that they were doing the right thing.

Yan Xiaohan and Fu Shen's relationship is one of the most healthy relationships that I have seen in danmei.

The only reason that I gave it four stars is that what makes a novel isn't just romance. In my opinion what fell short was the political aspect towards... more>> the end. Mind you, I don't hate politics in novels; I find it a good way to delve into the mind set of a character and learning what they consider right and wrong. However the political struggles within the court and the outsiders were too simple.


It was to be expected that after the Prince ascended to the throne he would become power hungry which was frankly disappointing since he had such a good relationship with Fu Ling and that got ruined. Speaking of Fu Ling, I wish we saw more of her relationship with Fu Shen rather then talk of it.

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