Liang Shan Bo and Ju Ying Tai

“Zhu Ying Tai was a girl from a good reputable and well off family; however, she was not satisfied with woman’s lifestyle then and she begged her family to let her dress up as a guy and to attend school, to which her family finally said yes to.

At school, she met a guy named Liang Shan Bo who was gentle and very intelligent, and the two hit it off really well, and in the span of three years, they became the best of friends. Eventually, they parted ways and the next time Liang Shan Bo met Zhu Ying Tai, she came to him in the form of a girl, and they finally realized their love for each other.

Thus, Liang Shan Bo asked for her hand in marriage, but her family has already decided to marry her off to another son of a rich family. Liang Shan Bo despaired so much that he fell sick and passed away. Zhu Ying Tai, who’s been trying to defy this marriage, suddenly agreed to it. She wore her red wedding gown, and went into the carriage, everything was happy and loud till after the carriage landed, Zhu Ying Tai walked out in all plain clothes, and walked to the grave of Liang Shan Bo. She started wailing loudly and a storm came with loud banging noises, until eventually the grave split open, and she jumped in and disappeared. The storm now faded, and a pair of butterflies flew out of the grave, dancing happily under the sun.”

CM learned this folktale growing up in China. It’s somewhat similar to a Chinese Romeo and Juliet, lovers separated by family and dying for each other’s love. The magical element of the loud storm, grave opening up, and butterflies leaving the grave gives it a very mystical fairytale-like edge.