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Tear Jerker / The Ultimate Evil

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    The Ultimate Evil 
  • The extended backstory of Lo Pei, as told by his Living Statue to Valerie. He had a son and a daughter named Lo Mei. His wife died in childbirth, leaving him to raise his children under Shendu's tyrannical rule. Then Shendu took Mei as his bride against her will. Pei raised an army of enslaved humans to save both the people of China and his daughter, but when they stormed Shendu's palace, Mei was killed during the battle, leaving Pei only the consolation of imprisoning Shendu in his statue form and scattering his Talismans.
    • When Pei's statue finally realizes that he's not a living thing, his sorrow is increased by the fact that Valerie is not Mei disguising herself with magic like he first thought. When he performs his Heroic Sacrifice, Valerie is left with unexplained sadness due to the familiarity she feels to the ancient warrior without knowing why.
  • Valerie is shown to be deeply hurt by her father's death, and she apparently hasn't much common ground with her mother. Her unexpected encounter with her father's murderer leaves her so shaken that she seeks comfort from Shendu.
  • It's eventually revealed that Shendu killed the young man Lo Mei loved while forcing her to watch before taking her by force. Shortly before his defeat, she impaled herself with a sword out of grief.
  • After Jade has been released from the Netherworld, she rewards Valerie's relief by calling her a liar for leaving her status as Hsi Wu's Other untold. This leaves Valerie (who's had to deal with the others' mistrust of her after her deal with Shendu) ready to utterly crack until Nat comforts her.
  • In the rewritten reality, Nat was killed along with her family for trying to rebel against the Demon Sorcerers. Jade is shown Nat's body that has been put on display as a warning.
  • Valerie saying goodbye to Ryuu.
  • Before Valerie fixes the Book of Ages, Shendu says that everything he did was for her before he's caught by the vortex.
  • The final chapter has Valerie's emotional breakdown over her complex feelings for Shendu, leading her to return home to Toronto to try and sort things out.

     The Stronger Evil 
  • Valerie's complicated relationship with Shendu comes up again, as she's left feeling guilty and sympathetic for him when he's turned to stone again.
    • When they realize in the 18th chapter that they've been sharing dreams, she brings up the events of the rewritten reality to answer his question why she keeps denying that she has feelings for him.
      Shendu: I did NOT change you, Valerie. Not one part of your personality. I could have written it so that we were already bonded, I could have consummated our love with you the moment we awoke in that reality - Heaven knows, I wanted to. But I didn't! Even at the alter, if you had but said the words, I would have stopped it all. I gave you the choice throughout. I wanted to make you happy, I wanted you to choose to love me! Can you tell me there was no part of you that was at least content?
      Valerie: I… I was happy. I remember just talking with you, laughing, just being easy with you. Ever since you've come back, I can't get out of my head this want for your voice, when you would teach me magic and tell me how well I was doing! You believed in me.
      Shendu: I loved you. I still do.
      Valerie: And yet I can't forget what you did. All the horrible things you've done - or tried to do. If I forget, what kind of person does that make me?
  • Val's internal conflicts escalate with Future-Jade's cold treatment of her and the implications regarding her future role as Drago's mother.
  • The J-Team's sorrow over Jade's return to the Queen of the Shadowkhan, especially Valerie's.
  • Jackie, Uncle, and Tohru all walking out on Valerie when she proposes working with Drago and Shendu against Tarakudo. Only Nat sticks with her, and then just barely.
  • The snippets of what Drago reveals about his past. Valerie raised him the best way she could while Shendu was petrified. The last time he saw her, he was ten years old. He was then taken care of by a grandfather for seven years, after which he got to know Shendu. Unfortunately, Shendu had grown colder and unforgiving, so nothing Drago did could please him. Now the grievances from his own time prompt him to prove himself, and he has mixed feelings about interacting with the mother who hasn't birthed him yet.
  • The 19th chapter turns Shendu into a full-blown Jerkass Woobie as he confides to Valerie that he wishes to locate Tiamat to get answers from the mother who cut off all contact with him and his siblings for doing something she birthed them for. After he fails to find anything from the Babylonian artifact, he becomes despondent enough to say he'll never able to win Valerie's heart. He's even ready to let the Chans petrify him again if Valerie gives him the final rejection.
    Shendu: When my mother lost her first mate… the pain, the loneliness she suddenly felt, it drove her almost mad. She was angry at humanity, angry at the world for taking away that which she loved with all her heart. When my father found her, he offered her a way to make the pain stop, for her to have her revenge. She agreed but she was loath to do so. My mother was forced to carry me and my siblings in her womb, one by one. And she brought us into the world in a fit of anguish. I don't know if she expected Typhon to help her with the brood he had promised would bring her all the vengeance she sought. In any case, he vanished after we were all born. Mother said his form could no longer hold him together, and he died. Alone she was left with us, eight pieces of evidence of her grief and violation. She made us for one purpose, and one purpose alone: to destroy. And that was what we did. She was our mother, we revered and feared her. When she sent us out into the world to destroy her enemies, we did that and more. We relished in being able to unleash our full potential, in bringing our mother what she desired. And yet… she abandoned us. Gone. Never to be seen again. You speak of me treating Drago less than favourably. But what am I supposed to show him when my own mother took that away from me? I have never known what you mortals call love. I never knew why my mother did what she did. Though I will admit this is a rare case for me; in this instance, I do not desire power, Valerie. I just want answers.
    • Valerie becomes torn between helping the Chans in capturing Shendu and her growing compassion toward him. She ends up telling him to continue his search for his mother and not to lose hope in her.
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