Stratagem 3: Episode 25 - Mo Shaoqian refuses to see Tong Xue
Entice the tiger to leave its mountain lair (调虎离山) Wiki
Never directly attack an opponent whose advantage is derived from its position. Instead lure him away from his position thus separating him from his source of strength.After Mo Shaoqian's confrontation with the Mu family and his revenge plan underway, Mu Zhenfei goes to the cemetery to warn Mo Shaoqian that his sister is plotting something against him.
At this time, Tong Xue had already ended her illicit relationship with Mo Shaoqian. When Tong Xue phones Mo Shaoqian on her own initiative, Mo Shaoqian can definitely sense something is awry because she rarely calls him out of her own accord. Since Tong Xue is his weakness, he probably knows that Mu Yongfei will use Tong Xue to force him to loosen up his grip on the Mu family business and withdraw his ultimatum against them. The fact that Tong Xue is looking for him equals BAD NEWS. To avoid Tong Xue, he purposely lies that he'll coming back to Hangzhou later that day, but in fact he has already arrived at the airport. Not only does Mo Shaoqian have no intention to meet with Tong Xue, he wants to prevent Tong Xue from seeking him out at home and tells her that she's welcome to wait for him at he airport if she so desires.
Anyway, Tong Xue's resilience won in the end. She still manages to track him down!
When Mo Shaoqian sees this look on Tong Xue's face, does it remind him of the moment when she was cooking for him in his kitchen?
Mo Shaoqian seems genuinely tormented/conflicted when he sees Tong Xue waiting for him in his living room. He probably misses her a lot, but also knows that he should never see her again for her own sake.
Once Tong Xue turns around to face him, Mo Shaoqian immediately switches back to his icy exterior again. In the past, Mo Shaoqian loved Tong Xue in a petty manner. Now he loves her in a cowardly fashion.
No matter how hard he tries to push Tong Xue away and not see her, he still can't help himself but pull Tong Xue back when she's about to leave him.
To prevent Tong Xue from seeking Mu Yongfei or Mu Zhenfei for help, he promises to consider signing the contract if Tong Xue is willing to spend another month with him. He cannot bear to see Tong Xue servilely beg the Mu family for help and have them use Tong Xue as their pawn. Mo Shaoqian would rather have Tong Xue stay by his side so he can protect her from Mu Yongfei's schemes. During this month, his request will be enough to occupy Tong Xue's mind since she will probably devote her energy in persuading him to sign the contract and not shift her attention elsewhere.
"Entice the tiger to leave its mountain lair" is more of an offensive stratagem, but Mo Shaoqian uses it as an defensive technique to fend off Mu Yongfei's trap. He feels that if Tong Xue can't find him, then he wouldn't have to face her and Mu Yongfei won't be able to use her to scrape at his soft spot. Unfortunately, Tong Xue's persistence is indomitable. Just a few tears and a forlorn look from Tong Xue can cause Mo Shaoqian's wall to start crumbling down. He is keenly aware that his love for Tong Xue can destroy him, but he still can't resist it. In this world, the most brilliant trap is something called "love."
Originally written by cainfreya, translated/commented/edited by JoleCole