There is much brutality in Raven of the Inner Palace, from violent and deadly politics to heartbreaking abuse and bloodshed. Even Shouxue's solitude serves as an illustration of the subtly present yet unnerving darkness in Shou. Episode 8 demonstrates that Shouxue is an unexpected source of light in such a gloomy area, despite having been hardened by the social constraints of her position as Raven Consort and the tragedy she personally endured.

As she investigates several ghost cases throughout the series, Shouxue comes across the terrible tales of persons who have endured the harsh social structure, penalties, and injustices typical of the time. Shouxue encounters the spirit of a lady who was slain because of sociopolitical unrest after being falsely accused of murder in the early episodes. each installment silently,, yet poignantly unearths yet another cruel aspect of Shou's culture, reminding viewers of the darkness that lies beneath the setting's beauty. However, Shouxue's gentle kindness in response to such unsettling stories proves that she represents hope to many of the series' characters.

Discovering the Tragedy of a Young Eunuch by Shouxue

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Wei Qing's depressing backstory in Episode 5 has already demonstrated the cruelty that many eunuchs face, but Episode 8 brings yet another sad tale of a young eunuch. After Yi Siha comes to her with news of a ghost only he can see, Shouxue sets out to uncover the story of this ghost so that she can put the ghost to rest. As Shouxue finds out through her investigation, the ghost belongs to a young boy who was executed for accidentally killing a bird while trying to harvest feathers. Though the boy was aware that killing the bird is considered a crime and punishable by death in Shou, he still came forward, willing to suffer the consequences.

Though Shouxue acknowledges the shamefulness of the young eunuch's behavior, she also recognizes the tragedy of the situation. As Shouxue states when comforting the ghost's mourning friend, death is scary, but it is also natural. Even in her rational advice, Shouxue's sympathy and respect for humanity is evident in how she strives to bring peace both to the ghosts she encounters and to the people with lasting grief.


Shouxue's disposition warms the hearts of other Eunuchs.

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The ghost of the young boy and his grown friend are not the only eunuchs Shouxue brings peace to in Episode 8. Yi Siha, the young eunuch who brings Shouxue news of the ghost, endures his own suffering at the hands of his masters. After Shouxue notices that his legs are hurt and offers to treat him, she discovers welts that indicate beating. Though this already disturbs her, Shouxue stumbles upon other eunuchs holding Yi Siha down and flogging the back of his legs as punishment. Angered at this show of cruelty, Shouxue demands that they stop and never beat Yi Siha again, ultimately resulting in him being thrown out. However, Shouxue sets out to find arrangements for him and ultimately takes him in herself.

Though she has experienced the full extent of cruelty and darkness in Shou herself, Shouxue is not willing to let Yi Siha and other eunuchs suffer in silence. She even brings up the issue with Emperor Gaojun, expressing her desire for change. Her response shows the care she has for those who suffer in Shou's unfair system. After noticing Shouxue's kind attitude and intolerance of cruelty, Wen Ying, a eunuch already in Shouxue's service, expresses how much her kindness has moved him and touched his heart, revealing to her the suffering he endured that lead to him becoming a eunuch.

Shouxue may have poor social skills from her years in isolation, but she shows more humanity than most. While Episode 8 especially highlights Shouxue's kindness, each episode demonstrates her warmth even amid her cold personality as she works to bring peace to those who suffered and provide refuge for those who need it.