The Inverted Dragon’s Scale


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Born naturally defective but possessed by the spirit of a divine dragon. Inheriting the divine dragon’s will and power, growing scales and magical claws, imperial waters containing the breath of the dragon, travelling through clouds and summoning rain, an invincible physical body. In this world and era, countless men dream of slaying dragons. Li Mu Yang has always lived a hard life.

Associated Names
One entry per line
Nì lín
Reverse Scale
Related Series
Ze Tian Ji (2)
Pivot of the Sky (2)
My Beautiful Teacher (1)
My Disciple Died Yet Again (1)
My Girlfriend is a Zombie (1)
My House Is a Magic Power Spot ~Just by Living There I Become the Strongest in the World~ (1)
Recommendation Lists
  1. Switch at Birth 2
  2. Will read
  3. Switched Real Child vs Fake Child Part 2
  4. Anas A
  5. Mango approved

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28 Reviews

Jul 09, 2016
Status: c20
The writing style isn't bad... but the MC is simply too useless. It's like the author had raked his brain to make him as much of a loser as possible. If anything, the author should be commended for that, this really is without exaggerating the most pathetic MC I have ever come across until now - and that says a lot when even the MCs of the Japanese Harem LNs look better compared to him.

The MC is handicapped, he was nearly blind and has had all kinds of deficiencies as... more>> a child. It took him years to even open his eyes and he only managed to walk by himself after 10 years. He looks like the bottom of an old cauldron and even his intelligence is lacklustre - he is almost ret*rded. And no, this is not me being mean, this is the truth: he can barely read and he does nothing but sleep his life away because of his condition.

Moreover, he's bullied by everyone and he doesn't even care, only accepting it as if it's the most natural thing in the world.


The MC begins at some point to slowly change but I barely managed to bear with reading 25 chapters. When the MC is this... this "I don't even have words to describe him", I can't possibly read it.

I'm just an ordinary dude and because of that I want to read about someone extraordinary, about a genius when it comes to either his intelligence or martial arts. I don't need to read about the daily life of a handicapped person. This doesn't bring me any kind of enjoyment <<less
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Dream Seeker
May 20, 2016
Status: c215
"Millions of brave soldiers protecting the real dragon. Once the dragon king was furious, even heaven itself would fear. " - Chapter 82

"I can't." Li Muyang said firmly. "No matter what happens, I will not leave you behind. If we leave, we leave together; if we die, we die together." - 104

"Dragon souls protecting their king, how solemn and touching." Lu Qiji's eyes welled with tears, as she said in a hoarse voice. - 189

"Because of my reckless words, my clan fought with the Abyss demons. Because of my s*upidity,... more>> my clan was massacred by those deceitful and vile human beings..." 191

"If you can't do it, pull out your sword." Li Muyang said with a smile. "When I was lying on the g round, I suddenly thought of a move, I think——I can rescue this. Maybe, I will accidentally send you flying?" -208

"Don't be silly." Li Muyang said: "You are my defeated opponent. I won't fight a second battle with a defeated opponent. Winning is an embellishment, losing is a burden." -211

At first one would think this just like the rest, underdog story of someone who becomes op, which is true but isn't true. It feels like the other stories who use tr*sh MC to OP power house are 3rd rate copies of this series. What we have is realistic display of enduring bullying, humiliation and shame while he starts to develop into his not so ordinary destiny.

So the concept is the same, and might appear to be cliche, but seems like author has a good grasp on writing and audience engagement. The antagonists don't feel like mindless jerks, nor does main character actually feel overpowering. This all there is for now, it's early in series, so we haven't seen all what premise promised us. I can't wait to see an protagonist who is not just hidden dragon, but literally one. <<less
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Aug 28, 2016
Status: c130
I've really enjoyed "The inverted Dragon's Scale".

here's why.

1. Story: (without reading into RAWs, just the translated chapters)
- The author fleshes the flow of one scene to another. Its not something that's just scene 1 here, scene 2 there, scene 3 there, scene 4 quickly next next next. The scenes from one to another are knitted properly, and thus the breaks are often NOT at the end of the chapter, but rather as of what happens at the end of an event.

- The naming scheme of the title... more>> fits exactly to the overall spirit of the story. (its a chinese proverb by the way). This is important because (without spoiling too much), it deals with the MC's bottom line as he fiddles with the status quo and his newfound experience of transitioning from his body's status quo to what he CAN / COULD experience as an individual being (this is important). As such, we see as the choices he make, and him dealing with the consequence of himself being himself / choices made while the world does not revolve around him (surprise!) More on it on the 'add on' below:

2. Writing / narration.
- this story is, as is told from the 3rd party perspective, but not omniscient. Basically readers will have to pick up clues, pieces, make your own judgement, etc. The story does not assume the readers to know EVERYTHING, and does not make an assumption that the main characters will know everything.
- The scenes aren't detailed, but the author makes effort to put emphasis on what's happening (without going overboard as to explain why this or that is happening). E.G: In the early parts of the story the author writes about the character sleeping in the class as a conversation around him is happening (and the character himself, as pointed out, is unaware because he is sleeping). The author did not explain why the character is sleeping, but tells of the character's struggle to keep awake and his reluctance to stay awake (because he wants to continue sleeping, for reasons that aren't mentioned).
- impression wise, the story narrates without trying to overly explain things to the point "how it should have been understood by the readers in this sense". Its not pacy, its not slow. It will feel very cliffhanger-ish if you read it chapter by chapter (translated), so I would suggest that you wait for multiple chapters before binge-reading it in a go.

I believe its a good read, and best to read if you can binge read (since like I've said, the scenes are interwoven, so you won't know if the chapters you've read suddenly hits into a cliffhanger chapter)

add on: (this won't be a review, but more of some skim-on-the surface discussion)

A lot of rants are completely unjustified: While I won't go into spesific rants (because I cannot emphatize with the TL;DR generation of kids, but here's something without giving too much spoilers

1a) On "racism" (that doesn't even exist). You have to understand, that this is a story from a perspective of a person who did not had a head start in life. Essentially, he's exactly everything that what the world can sh*t on him on; he was born with a charcoal skin (its not like he's an African-American black kind of black. It is just that he's dark, very dark). Its not even racist (I'm not even sure if race applies here, because in this world, as of translated chapters, everyone gets the same Chinese-esque names. You don't get James Rodriguez, or Ali bin Abu, or Vajildra de la Cruz, or Vijayan Gomaladan, and etc. Everyone shares the chinese names. You can't be racist if these caucasian, arabian, malay, asian, Indian, Red Indian, Swedish, Russian, etc. Because it doesn't exist.

1b) On the tropes; There are a lot of tropes in this story. But then again, what stories don't utilize tropes or mask them? For a someone that was born with a lot of deficiencies (physical, and mental deficiency, to be exact), its pretty "normal" to have people that would, regardless of sensitivities to jeer at these underprivileged people. The MC, just happens to be part of the underprivileged group. For a time. Without spoiling the story, you just have to read how MC breaks away from that mental and physical deficiency. About the family treating MC nicely, it is as realistic as possible. A family with children with special needs will find it very difficult to take care of their children. But they will still do it. In this case the MC breaks away from the 'handicapped' status into a normal, and then later, well, you know, its a story... so you get the idea. But the family is realistically treating the MC. Sister loving the brother? In a caucasian world where its very "selfish and self centred" world view, a lot of people would find this concept laughable and alien. But asian readers would understand it a lot, because of the fact that in many asian societies, people live in a very 'busybody' communal lifestyle, where one thing is always, perpetually connected to another.

1c) A lot of story expectations lies in the MC should be like this, like that, can't be this, can't be that. This story isn't so. Understand again, that the proverb "The dragon's underscale, or the dragon's inverted scale", is exactly what the story is (at least up to chapter 130), the BOTTOM line. The MC itself lives his live, explores the new world that has opened up to him. That little blunders that he make, that very over the top confidence that is found in youths, that repercussions to his actions as he takes it all in; makes this story worth reading. But the more you read, the more you'll learn that the MC changes (despite the short chapters). The MC is relatable. His injustice, and later as you learn, the persona's injustice, is relatable. He grows, he learns, and he gets helped along the way. But he is relatable. <<less
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Jun 24, 2016
Status: c20
Quick impressions as of Ch18.

An unexpected gem. We get to read about a baby with a tr*shy background, abandoned by his original family, only to find love and affection in his new adoptive home. We start off in a school background (as in an actual modern school) and that alone makes it different than other stories that throw us into a martial arts setting.

The writing does very well in playing the emotions of the readers, that the MC's actions and feelings are believable. The dialogue scenes are nicely written, there... more>> is a human element within them that makes them as real and not just actors spouting off lines.

While there isn't an overarching plot yet in the 20 chapters I've read, the prose and the story progression is enough to keep me interested.

I also recommend the translations done by Aran, as the Martial Dao translator seems to base it off machine translation and as of Ch21, has dropped it. <<less
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Twilight Reverie
Twilight Rev
Sep 07, 2017
Status: c201
Roughly the first 150 chapters of this story are written extremely well, featuring excellent pacing and engaging characters and events. After this point, however, the plot progression begins to slow considerably; the narrative transitions to a typical martial arts academy/training situation. In turn the story is bogged down with wordy descriptions and action sequences that are intended to sound intelligent, even enlightened, but have little real meaning or impact on the narrative.

The greater issue is the inconsistencies in how the protagonist is portrayed. To a certain extent this can be... more>> explained logically by the influence of the dragon's soul mentioned in the story's summary, but even this influence should demonstrate a logical progression in how our protagonist's world view is changed. It doesn't. Instead the protagonist exhibits seemingly random mood swings at odd times that make no sense given the experiences he has had up to that point. This makes it difficult to understand the protagonist's personality and perspective, and nearly impossible for the reader to identify character traits to identify with. As a result the narrative often feels broken, force, even duct-tapped together, without any smooth transitions or logical progression. To an extent it feels as if the author defined the protagonist's initial state, at the start of the story, and his final state, which he should achieve at the story's conclusion, but has failed to understand or define the manner in which the protagonist transitions from one to the other. <<less
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Nov 25, 2018
Status: --
I had put this story off for quite a while due to it's harsh reviews. I believed them to be true not just because they were fairly detailed but because many people liked the reviews. The top review on this website currently says something about him being useless tr*sh and they couldn't read any further. Well after reading a bit of the story you know why that is. He was struck by lightning when he was a baby. Blinded, barely alive, turned black, and also it gave him some brain... more>> damage. He should be lucky he survived. If the people reviewing this story had a better attention span they would have found out that over time he gets stronger, better looking, and smarter. I like strong from the start stories as well sometimes, but not all stories are going to be the same. I actually felt like his character growth was fairly fast myself.

The top review said they stopped reading at chapter 25. That says a lot. This has more than 400 or so already translated chapters. How can that review be taken seriously? Although I am currently only 100 chapters in myself, I have enjoyed this story greatly. I also do not believe I am in a position to write a review yet either because I'm not even a quarter through the translated story. I just wanted to let people know that I regret putting this off due to those reviews and everyone should give the story a chance. When I am caught up to the translator I will try to remember to come back and add a proper review. So far the story is interesting, the characters all have distinct personalities, the romance doesn't seem rushed or forced, and the translators are doing a terrific job.

At chapter 130 and now I can officially say it's not worth reading anymore. It went in a dumb direction. for those that don't mind a spoiler. Although it hinted towards this earlier on, I hoped the author wouldn't go this direction...


The dragon MC is basically reincarnated fated to fight over and over again against someone who is also reincarnated. It just happens to be the person switched at birth with him. I feel like these sort of things should have been stated from the start. It's not my cup of tea, but I'm sure many people wouldnt mind it. That was my only problem with this story and it's just to big of a problem for me. Seems like a very juvenile "Plot twist".. if you want to call it that.

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Jul 05, 2016
Status: c36
As of c36, I am quite impressed with this novel. The MC is both relatable and real. The author magnificently wrote the MC as a person with emotions. When he feels injustice, you can actually feel it with him especially when
... more>>

the MC cried after being accused of a cheater

The novel was written in a way that the readers will be engaged with the MC as he struggles to obtain his goals.

The weakness of this novel is on how the author presented the settings of the story. He only gives bits of information on the current level of civilization or technology. As you read, most of the time, you have no idea on what the area looks like. <<less
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Jun 17, 2016
Status: c28
A different twist on the typical tr*sh to OP MC. The world is set in a AU that is a combination of modern terminology (i.e. High school, college, hospitals, polo, & etc), however, they still drive carriages and wear robes so it's confusing on how to place any time period on it even if it is in an AU.

The MC is the standard guy who gets abandoned at birth by his family for being tr*sh when he was struck by lightening at birth, turning the MC into a weak charcoal... more>> looking newborn. What differentiates this MC slightly from other stories is that despite his appearance and initial weak health, he does grow up in a loving family.

Of course, there's also the must have bullying because how else will tr*sh evolve in such stories. The only thing that was slightly uncomfortable to read is the prejudice about his skin color. While it's not an out right racism story about his unique black color skin, in a world where his skin color is certainly unique, the prejudice is to be expected.

Overall, it's an interesting story, but if you can ignore the modern terminology in a maybe historical type of world setting, and if you're not overly sensitive to skin color prejudice then I'd recommend this story. <<less
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Sep 01, 2017
Status: c215
Yet another underrated novel!

I have seen many people complaining about the wimpiness of the 'MC', about the pace, etc I'm not saying those people are wrong but they are only half-right.

While writing this review I had read about 215 chapters, for me the novel felt like 'naruto', well instead of a nine tailed fox, you have a dragon here and it's way useful than the nine tailed fox, if you read the novel you will know what I mean. So during all the fights in the chapters I have read,... more>> it was all sudden strength gains and no effort on MC's part. The world building in the novel is average so far, the cultivation methods, etc have not been revealed yet.

For the MC to completely figure out the secret hidden in his body, this novel took 215 chapters, in that aspect it's slow paced but it's not boring at all. Yes, the MC is wimpy because he is bullied all the time but he changes because of support from other characters and later on he becomes standard MC, I suppose. There is immense character development with respect to MC.

Characters are one of the best parts about this novel compared to other novels of this genre, even supporting characters are also given unique traits, and the author has made an effort to make each character distinct.

Comedy is another positive aspect of this novel, it's largely mined from interactions between the characters. The novel was not boring in large part due to comedy.

There is a semblance of 'realism' in the way the characters behave which makes them relatable, I have read many novels featured on this site but I can confidently say that very few of the novels have this aspect in them.

There is also politics in the novel, various clans vying for power, trying to upstage each other, MC is also accidently s**ked into the power games.

The novel is not without it's share of faults, the MC has mood swings, some times he acts like a guy too mature for his age and sometimes he acts silly. The novel has jarring tone-shifts, like one moment it's funny and the very next moment it turns ultra violent.

Overall this novel is completely worth reading if you are looking for something different from the run of the mill Xuanhuan novels. <<less
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Jun 10, 2017
Status: c347
Modern day mixed with Fantasy, add a biopolar raging dragon, some martial arts... Oh yeah, don't forget the little she-demon of a sister! Get ready to laugh folks!

*Coughs a bit embarassedly* Ahem, on a more serious note, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading The Inverted Dragon's Scale up to this point and anxiously await for more!!!!
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Sep 01, 2017
Status: c147
A well written, well translated, but characteristically muddy novel that's difficult to enjoy. Some elements are very well presented: the little sister and the MC's family are done quite well. The setting, however, desperately needs work - it goes from an implied modern-day setting with fancy cars for rich people and elegant cafes to a more primitive fantasy feudal setting with no explanation, and shoe-horning those together induces a great deal of confusion in the reader.

As of the first 150 chapters, the characters are consistent, but are both... more>> interesting and annoying in that the author goes to considerable lengths to force on the reader that there are no truly good or evil people. Nice folk do malicious things, and people presented in an unapologetically evil fashion are treated with nobility. This is a common trope in eastern philosophies; that Truth yields to Power and that Good vs Evil is only synonymous to Winner and Loser, but can be jarring*. Also, characters actions suffer from storyboarding fatigue. Scenes that the characters act in make sense individually, but the actions that the characters would naturally have to take as a consequence are ignored in favor of consistency in the next setting. In short, the characters make decisions that can't be empathized with when the reader is binging continuously, rather than episodic.

Personally, I am decidedly not a fan of forced misunderstandings and deceptive narrators, which the novel does depend on for a lot of it's humor and drama. This does decrease my enjoyment of the novel, though your mileage may vary. I had to force myself to read this far, despite enjoying many individual scenes. I'm putting this on the back burner until it gets finished, if ever. I'd probably enjoy this novel more if I knew the ending wasn't a Gainax mindscrew, or if I had a better idea if the trip itself would be worth it.

*: It's August 2017 in the USA, and I'm becoming very, very, much less tolerant of variants of this sort of ideology. Truth IS objective, Power MUST be balanced by Responsibility to avoid Corruption, and The Ends DO NOT justify The Means. So this is less entertaining in my current culture than it might otherwise have been. : ( <<less
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Jan 12, 2018
Status: c20
Dropped in the early stage.

I found the writing / translation to be subpar, and 10 chapters in there wasn't any character that I found sympathetic: the MC is imo a whiny idiot and the rest of the cast is made of caricatural bullies.

... more>>

Our MC goes to school for years only to sleep, refuse to pay attention and get bullied.

He miraculously gets endowed with knowledge and acts offended when he's logically suspected of cheating...

I admit that his teacher is also written as a caricature of a bully and deserves some retribution for her bad attitude, but our drama queen of a MC is to blame imo: he disrespected her class for years by sleeping and never explained that it was the result of a "medical condition" due to lightning...


I also found the farting jokes to be in bad taste.

Avoid this story, it's not worth your time (definitely not mine) and there are better ones out there. <<less
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Jul 17, 2017
Status: c186
I really like this novel because it feels different. It feels unique. Of course, there still are some cliches, but overall it has a different feel.

SLOW START. I bet a lot of people rated it badly because the start is a bit slow and painful to read. It gets better! Much better.

The side characters are interesting. MC's little sister is so amusing. She doesn't feel annoying. I wouldn't be surprised if she were a protagonist in a different story.

... more>> Lots of feels. MC seems to have lots of emotions. Strong ones.

Li Muyang is a confusing MC. His character develops, but his "legacy" kinda makes him confusing. Not his fault, blame the


Dragon King's tear that's meshed in with him


He's naive socially, seems honest, is righteous and ruthless, but he somehow acts shameless and sly. Welp. He's not afraid to butt-kiss


because he'd give up everything for his family.

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Jun 10, 2017
Status: c67
This novel is amazing. It is very unique. I seriously recommend this novel to people who want to read something emotional and interesting. It's extremely well written. I don't know if it's quite Ze Tian Ji level, but this is truly an excellent novel. It has that spark of creativity that I first found in ISSTH when I started reading it. Of course, the feel is very different, but the character development for all of the characters as well as the depth and lack of normal a**holeness found in Xuanhuan... more>> makes this a wonderful read.

Don't get me wrong, some characters are douchebags, but many characters who first seem like they might become that, actually end up being more complex and really interesting. I really love the characters in this series. It's quite charming. 10/10 Please read this! Don't be discouraged by the few 1 star reviews. It does indeed feel a bit awkward at the beginning for those people looking for immediate wish fulfillment, but even then this series really is just amazing.

I just love how it breaks out of so many of the overused xuanhuan tropes and presents itself in an original, thoughtful manner. TLDR: Read this if you want something fresh, thoughtful, emotional, and amazing. Is TKA/ISSTH level so far, tho maybe not ZTJ level. <<less
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Oct 13, 2017
Status: --
I really like the novel because its exactly what its said, he is ugly in the beginning, and is not the most smart but he don't give up and keep following his dream. Just read a bit more and you'll see that the MC is intelligent, kind and is not too naive
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Jul 30, 2017
Status: c65
Extremely slow paced novel. Probably the slowest novel I've read. I had some reservations about reading this when I read some reviews about a useless MC, but honestly the MC is not that bad. He's ugly, unpopular, and people think he's a dumbass, but he's definitely not a pushover. He stands up for himself and tries his best. In fact, he's actually extremely intelligent, but just doesn't have common sense. That being said, he's not really my cup of tea.

Setting of this story is a bit blurry- people ride in... more>> cars so technology obviously exists, but bodyguards carry swords and bows? Why are there no guns? Cultivators in this novel so far are pretty weak, so it's definitely not because "guns are useless". Also, there's cultivation but for some reason everyone is engrossed with studying. IMO you can train superpowers, there would be a lot less emphasis on studying and more on training.

This novel is way to slow paced for me. The entire novel so far just feels like the MC trudging through a muddy river. <<less
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Jul 09, 2018
Status: c352
My only complaint about the book is that the setting is very confusing because its like modern age but lacking some things, while said its Earth but not Earth, and Civilizatuon but martial arts. Another complaint is that the books genre feels like it doesnt really fit mature romance and should instaid be a tag while genre missing for this is tragedy, because you can see this throughout the book. There is romance btw just very slow and all the way to chapter 352 he still has... more>> not kissed anyone or got a gf. Core aspects of this book felt really good as the tragedy in the books makes u fall in love with the MC with everything in between. The book itself is basically a crippled person turns out to be a dragon whom everyone in the world wants to kill. His goal is to avenge (wont say 2 much for spoilers), protect his loved ones, be able to be meet/be with his first love again, and become strong enough for status. As the book itself focuses on tragic-romance type idk how to explain it, but so the novel is bit slow pased as its really detailed and addicting. <<less
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Sep 25, 2018
Status: c350
I really like this novel, its very interesting!

the one problem is the author makes it hard for me to understand what era this takes place in. It seems modern day with cars, phones etc. And then everyone wears ancient robes and drives horses everywhere!!! Do they do that in china and I just don't get it????? I know this is such a minor issue in an otherwise greatly enjoyable story but I needed to vent!!!

besides this my rating is 10/10
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May 11, 2018
Status: c217
First of all, MC is not as miserable as some reviews describe. That said, cultivation is moving horrifyingly slow, even slower than ze tian ji (while writing style is not as good). Also, the author introduced and crammed too many characters and their little dramas. At this point, I just want to read some good action scenes, I want to see MC cultivating properly and using his potential already. While he does cultivate, the results are that he's still in the first realm (barely)... he still relies on that unstable... more>> dragon power (and I'm at 217 chapter already). <<less
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Jan 15, 2018
Status: c276

“Who knows?” Lin Canghai’s face was twisted with a wry smile, looking around. “To tell you the truth, just when I was landing I was frightened, I thought I was dead. After all, this is Weak water, maybe we have been killed by the Weak water, leaving only our soul——”

“He also let me slap him in the face.” Qiandu stabbed.

“You slapped him?”

“I slapped him.” Qiandu said.



This kind of simple humor is why I love IDS so much. It’s not as funny as other comedies, but its humor is simple and realistic. The action is the same way. The story is full of fantastical things, but the plain tone makes it feel much more real than other xianxias. If I had to liken this to a series, then I’d have to pick Ze Tian Ji, which I like to think as a high recommendation.
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