The Xueqin/Guangxiong Affair Subplot in Romance in the Rain
Karma hits hard doesn't it? Lu Zhenhua married and divorced eight women, he married a woman young enough to be his daughter namely Wang Xueqin. How did this karma work? Although it wasn't the main focus but I thought this was a plot driver in the whole series. Both the 1986 and 2001 version kept the affair, although both had slight variations.
In both the 2001 and the 1986 version, Yiping discovered the whole dirty affair. This was going to be a secret weapon considering that she's hated Xueqin so much. At the same time, Zhenhua was getting what he deserved but not that I condone to Xueqin's two timing. I thought this was an affair that really got everything to fix with the theme, "What goes around, comes around."
1986 Yiping (the Yiping that made me wish 2001 Yiping were acted by Barbie Xu instead of Vicki Zhao) went out with Erjie for ulterior motives. Both versions wanted to uncover the whole dirty affair between Xueqin and her lover Guangxiong. In both versions, Xueqin would bring Erjie (who was really Guangxiong's son, not Zhenhua's) pretending to play mahjong but she went to meet with Guangxiong. I really thought the plot was sick but at the same time, Zhenhua needed to be hit really hard. What goes around, comes around doesn't it? In both versions, this became Yiping's wild card that could spell the end of Xueqin.
I always found it weird that Guangxiong would pick up a woman who already had three children. The affair resulted to the birth of Erjie who was really his son. Erjie grew up thinking Zhenhua is his father and vice versa. For some time, Zhenhua had pampered and doted on Erjie thinking the boy was his son. It was a real sucker to think that the moment Zhenhua and Wenpei had a divorce (due to Xueqin's manipulative nature) it led to a karma that was building up.
What went on was that Xueqin was actually Guangxiong's spy... to start getting the money of Zhenhua. It would at least answer why Guangxiong picked her up as his girlfriend. This affair was a secret one but it was already suspected by Li Fuguan. Fuguan kept quiet for the sake of the commander's reputation. Yiping discovered the whole dirty affair piece by piece. So if Guangxiong was so rich, why did he have to commit adultery with a retired general's trophy wife who already has three children?! However it was discovered that he used Xueqin as access to Zhenhua's money, which she gave him the savings to finance their dirty smuggling operation.
This backfired on Xueqin. Xueqin's dirty affair was uncovered during an argument. Xueqin wanted to settle scores with Yiping because Shuhuan would not love Ruping. What they didn't know was that Zhenhua was out there, overhearing the whole conversation. Aside from the black car that picked up Xueqin to her affair with Guangxiong, Yiping also mentioned the family court. If Erjie can be DNA tested (or blood tested), it would certainly prove he wasn't Zhenhua's son. This resulted to Zhenhua hypocritically getting mad. I mean he had eight ex-wives and while it was wrong for the latest wife to take a lover, it was indirectly payback for how he neglected Yiping for some time. Xueqin was later rescued by her lover Guangxiong.
Things didn't go so well for Xueqin either. It was already karmic at her. Remember Guangxiong stole ALL of Zhenhua's life savings driving the Lus to poverty. The result of her asking her daughter Ruping to go to Guangxiong resulted to two events. In most versions, Ruping killed herself causing her to become a drunkard. In the 2001 version, Ruping didn't commit suicide but ran away with her fate ambiguous to most of the characters except the audience. Either way, she soon fell into a drunken state. Worse her lover Guangxiong also had Anna as a lover which she also tasted her own bitter medicine. The worst part of the karma was that Guangxiong could not get his own son Erjie to recognize him at all!
The 2001 version had some interesting tidbits. Guangxiong was later arrested for his activities. The bar owner later admitted at least in the 2001 version that Guangxiong was already kicked out of major triads. He was reduced to a mere thief and gigolo (paid male escort). In short, Xueqin's implied that she paid him to be her lover while she was deceived by his fancy talk. Maybe Anna was also the same... maybe Guangxiong seduced women for money for all we know. Overall, it was a really bitter karma to the story.