The snarking came to have a nasty personal tone because, I finally realized, it's based on the unstated resentment, on both sides, attendant upon Kaiei having swooned over Pipang.
Goushou believes Goukou resents the fact that Goushou wouldn't share his favourite with Kaiei even though Kaiei naturally never asked him to do so. He can't say that to Goukou's face but he's thinking it hard. Goukou thinks Goushou is making difficulties in diplomatic areas because of his belief that Goukou resents him not sharing his favourite with Kaiei. Goukou of course knows that such an improper idea never crossed his mind, never did and never will: and anyway why *wouldn't* Goushou share Pipang with Kaiei? Goushou having a favourite made Kaiei miserable, and worse, Kaiei is miserable not only because he's in love but because his feelings have made life difficult for his uncle so he's doubly miserable, and that fact of course is also Goushou's fault, and even more unforgivable when Goushou owes Kaiei for clearing up his own domestic problems. If Goushou didn't have favourites that Goukou's son falls miserably in love with
But he doesn't think any of that at all. And maybe he doesn't: maybe Goushou only thinks he does.
If you're having trouble keeping all that straight, you can see why I'm having trouble writing this. And this morning, suddenly, the idea comes What if Kaiei doesn't swoon in delight on seeing Pipang? Or more precisely, what if he swoons in a proper self-contained Kaiei fashion while someone else- like Gouen- makes all the little passive-aggressive difficulties over Goushou's greediness with his enchanting favourite? This solves many problems, the generational ones not least (and the need for various people to lie to themselves about what's happening so as to blink the basic generational issues.) It also returns us to my very first version of the event, which echoed the young Yao Kuan in Karin first losing his adolescent heart to the Pearl Spirit and silently longing for her ever after. Err, and going to war against his uncle when his uncle seduces the Pearl Spirit- who has to marry the King, so his uncle tries to take the throne from Yao Kuan to ensure the PS stays his- and ultimately killing said uncle in battle, thus losing Pearl Spirit's good will forever. Mhh well, maybe we needn't go that far.
The only solution I can think of to this quandary is to write a 100 Demons story. Since both 100 Demons stories are also currently stuck, the only other solution seems to be to read Imaro. Or go in to work a few hours early. Which I may do: babies have many uses, and distraction is one of the chief.
(Well, I *could* do an lj poll. But I wouldn't feel bound by it, which makes it pointless; or possibly I would, which is worse. Anyway I get a bit twitchy when people do lj polls over What should I write? or How should I write? "Decide for me, o friendslist!" It contravenes some tenet of my religion, only I haven't figured out which one. Probably the one about 'The Muse alone must guide you.' Argh. Worse and worse. I go to play with the babies.)