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Thread: Li XunHuan's decision, what would you have done?

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    Default Li XunHuan's decision, what would you have done?

    One of Gu Long's most tragic heroes was Li XunHuan. Gu Long masterfully created this character with the most ironic of names, even though Xun Huan means to indulge in pleasure, Li XunHuan was a person who knew nothing but loneliness. For the greater of ten years he carried with him a wooden figurine but never dared to finish carving its face.

    The origins of his story lie ten years ago prior to the start of the novel. Lin ShiYin, his non-blood related cousin, and the love of his life, grew up with him in the same house. They were destined to be together. She was always by his side as they drank together and watched the snow gather on the plum trees in the yard.

    As fate would have it, one day Li XunHuan was ambushed by enemies and captured. A man named Long XiaoYun would come to his aid and rescue him. They became sworn brothers and the best of friends. When Li XunHuan finally invited Long XiaoYun to his home, Long would fall deeply in love at first sight with Lin ShiYin. He soon fell deathly ill, no doctors could diagnose the sickness. But he would reveal to Li XunHuan that he was love-sick, since the day they met, he desperately wished to marry Li XunHuan "cousin" Lin ShiYin. But unknown to Long XiaoYun was the fact that Lin ShiYin and Li XunHuan were lovers and she was his bride to be.

    Li XunHuan was torn between his closest friend, the friend who saved his life, and his one and only love. He knew for certain that Long XiaoYun would die if he couldn't have Lin ShiYin's heart. But he also knew that Lin ShiYin would be the only girl he would ever love. Li XunHuan finally decided that friendship was what was most important. He tried his best to force Lin ShiYin to hate him. Li XunHuan would constantly berate and ridicule her, even once coming home with two famous prostitutes. After two years, she finally broke and chose the one who was true to her, Long XiaoYun. Li XunHuan then decided to never see the pair again, retreating to the border regions so that they may live in peace. He even gave his entire fortune, manor, and estate to them as a wedding present. He chose to bear the burden of loneliness himself, so that others might be happy.

    This decision by Li XunHuan is one that is always questioned by everyone. Was he doing the right thing? Did he even consider how Lin ShiYin felt at all? But we have to remember, Li XunHuan was someone who believed that friendship was more important than life itself. Do you think what he chose was correct? What would you have done were you in his position?
    Last edited by bliss; 03-08-05 at 03:02 PM.

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    Senior Member allunderheaven's Avatar
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    pretty tough decision! don't think i could live with myself if i chose the love but as it is the love of your life then it would be pretty hard to know that she is with someone and that someone is your closest friend who has saved your life, ten years is too long i can see how he got those wrinkles round his eyes and drinks all the time like the saying 'once drunk can break a thousand sorrows'. can understand where he is coming from wanting to see her so he carves wooden figures but not finishing in case he sees her face and more painful memories come back. i don't think i could have done it to let her go, would have been to hard because if i did and i got together with someone else whom i didn't love as much then i don't think i could forgive myself for not fully giving my heart. but thats life eh?! haha

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    And people call Zhang Wuji a pansy in love.

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    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    A subtheme of many of Gu Long's novels is the conflict between the romantic love of a man and a woman and the brotherly, fraternal love between men who are friends. In Gu Long's ideology, at least, the latter seems to trump the former.

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    Senior Member SkineePanda's Avatar
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    I don't think it was the right decision on his part. What he did was self-less(for his friend) but unrealistic and in a way kinda irresponsible since he didn't really considered the girl's feelings. If the two truly loved each other, then that's that, nothing can break it. As for the poor dude lying in bed, well LXH should've been more hard-hearted and tell him straight that he can't give her up.

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    Senior Member Candide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Cheng
    A subtheme of many of Gu Long's novels is the conflict between the romantic love of a man and a woman and the brotherly, fraternal love between men who are friends. In Gu Long's ideology, at least, the latter seems to trump the former.
    Or in other words, he's gay.
    "Anything you can't say NO to is your MASTER, and you are its SLAVE."

    "I disapprove of what I say, but I will defend to the death my right to say it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Candide
    Or in other words, he's gay.
    Yea ... he's in the same boat with Xiao Feng. As a matter of fact, his "male companions" were probably Ni Kuang and Jin Yong.

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    Senior Member Crazy8's Avatar
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    i think you have to look at the time frame. you cant judge him base on the modern thinking and modern understanding of freindship and romance.
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    Senior Member Candide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bliss
    Yea ... he's in the same boat with Xiao Feng.
    Xiao Feng didn't try to make himself miserable like a junkie w/o coke. Long's a moron if he can't see that these two were lovers, and Li's a moron for destroying himself for that POS of a friend. In them, I can only see two pathetic men destroying themselves for a woman who can't make up her mind and tell them the truth.
    "Anything you can't say NO to is your MASTER, and you are its SLAVE."

    "I disapprove of what I say, but I will defend to the death my right to say it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Candide
    Xiao Feng didn't try to make himself miserable like a junkie w/o coke. Long's a moron if he can't see that these two were lovers, and Li's a moron for destroying himself for that POS of a friend. In them, I can only see two pathetic men destroying themselves for a woman who can't make up her mind and tell them the truth.
    Oh I thought you meant Gu Long was gay. I was just naming off possible closet emerging candidate(s).

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    Senior Member Candide's Avatar
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    Ah no. Of course I meant Li, the character I hate most in wuxia. I think GL just tried to make his story dramatic just for the hell of it, and he tried too hard. It's a lot of BS that LCF didn't introduce to Long that this girl was his fiancee when he brought him home the first time. How hard would "Brother Long, this is my fiancee, Lin Shiyin. Shiyin, meet Brother Long" be?
    "Anything you can't say NO to is your MASTER, and you are its SLAVE."

    "I disapprove of what I say, but I will defend to the death my right to say it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Candide
    Ah no. Of course I meant Li, the character I hate most in wuxia. I think GL just tried to make his story dramatic just for the hell of it, and he tried too hard. It's a lot of BS that LCF didn't introduce to Long that this girl was his fiancee when he brought him home the first time. How hard would "Brother Long, this is my fiancee, Lin Shiyin. Shiyin, meet Brother Long" be?
    I don't think it would've mattered whether Long knew he was her fiancee or not. Long XiaoYun was scum to begin with. The only way it could've worked out was probably if Lin ShiYin was already married to Li XunHuan. I'm not sure she was officially his fiancee either, just that the two were lovers since childhood, and that everyone just assumed that they were to be wed. So he couldn't have just introduced her as his fiancee. He couldn't really say, oh this is my girlfriend either, since there really isnt that type of a status in "olden times".

    After Long fell sick and told him that he would die if he couldn't have Lin ShiYin, Li XunHuan actively tried to persuade Lin to go for Long, so I'm pretty sure that during that period everything was out in the open. I think it boils down to Li XunHuan being too trusting and giving to friends, and him being best friends with the wrong person. Long XiaoYun was opportunistic and took advantage of Li XunHuan.
    Last edited by bliss; 03-09-05 at 01:28 PM.

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    Senior Member Candide's Avatar
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    Well even if Long was the "right" guy, Li had all the rights in the world to tell him to f-off, and he should have done exactly that.
    "Anything you can't say NO to is your MASTER, and you are its SLAVE."

    "I disapprove of what I say, but I will defend to the death my right to say it."

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    Li was an idiot. Yeah, he had a 'responsibility' to his friend. But he sure as hell had a responsibility as well to his lover.

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    That's easy to say since you're not in his position, but no matter what, the fact of the matter is that Long XiaoYun had just saved his life. He owed this person his LIFE. On top of that, Long XiaoYun was Li XunHuan's best friend, and he considers friendship more important than life itself. Given that, in HIS situation, how could he do otherwise? Maybe in our eyes he appears as in idiot, but its much easier to judge when you're not the one on the stand.

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    Senior Member TigerWong's Avatar
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    Lin ShiYin was not his to give............ ahh....must. stay. out. of. this. topic.

    Every few years this topic comes up, and my blood boils every time I think of LXH's actions. (Although I admire him in almost every other aspect). And always the same arguments come up... not in his shoes, different time period, friendship, etc, etc. Not to dismiss those points, but it seems like w. this subject, people will feel strongly one way or the other (i.e. it is probably as inconceivable for some to understand why people judge him so harshly, as it is inconceivable for me to accept that this was something that "must" be done)... In his shoes, I will never do what he did. I'm so sure of that I don't need to second guess. And yes, I value friendship a lot. But my lover is also my friend, they are not mutually exclusive. I probably won't help a friend if it must mean I hurt another (or course, there might be other factors to consider).

    But he made that decision. Fine. Deal with it. Quit playing the martyr. It's bad enough he made the choice to hurt someone supposedly so close to him, now we need to see him moping around.

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    If we look at the bottom line of what would've happened, and what did happen, would you all still think he did the wrong thing? If he kept Lin ShiYin to himself, his savior and best friend would have died. If he gave Lin ShiYin to Long XiaoYun, it was probable that the two could lead somewhat happy lives, and only he would have to live in pain.

    The important thing is that no one had to die. Can you live with something like that on your conscience? All Li XunHuan chose was a man's life over his own happiness. I don't see how you all can call his decision idiotic. Because to him, the reason why he chose friendship over Lin ShiYin was mostly because Long XiaoYun's life depended on it. That was the consequence of his decision. It wasn't as if he only did so to appear "noble" and "selfless", he was literally trying to save his best friend and savior's life, who laid in a bed dying before his very eyes.

    Of course it is questionable if Long XiaoYun really would've DIED, but in Li XunHuan's eyes, that was what his decision had to be based on. Everyone just seems to think he somehow chose friendship over love more as a way to show off his own nobility and selflessness but I think the decision was much more critical than that. Sorry to drag you into this TigerWong, but I think you guys gotta cut Li XunHuan some more slack.

  18. #18
    atlantean0208
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    Gu Long have a very bad history with women I mean his love live is a tortured live. So most of his novel represent this for example even more tragic as in 11th Son. That also a reason for those excessive drinking which reminiscene of LXH character. Based on his love live experience, he prefer of those male bonding/friendship (not gay) than the untrusted female companion which we see very clear in his novel. That's why we always have a very twisted femme fatale in his novel like LXEr or LJF. Even between mortal enemy like LXH and SGJH there is a spark of friendship even though it is very small.

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    Moderator kidd's Avatar
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    Just want to know. Why didn't LXH suspect anything when his friend still didn't die after 2 years of not having Lin ShiYin (bliss did say Lin ShiYin only break after 2 years). I don't get it. The guy was sick for a whole 2 years?

    Sorry, never read the novel or watch any adaptation of the novel. But I'm still curious to know the details.

  20. #20
    Senior Member ChronoReverse's Avatar
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    Furthermore, LXH may be moping about it, but he really didn't make it everyone else's problem.

    Sure everyone can see it (since the idiot was suffering), but it's not like he was trying to gain sympathy. Heck, the fact was used as an emotional weapon on him even.


    BTW, LXH didn't "give" LSY to Long. He just removed himself from the equation.

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