Random thoughts and writing on the net.

While rereading a favourite comfort read, the streak of brilliance that truly sells it became clear to me.

In 50 Tea Recipes from the Duchess (I'm reading the webtoon by Ant Studio based on Lee Jiha's novel via Tapas), there is no metagame.

One day, Korean office worker Hajeong Park goes through office hell. The doomed project her boss pushed on her has indeed failed. She has been forced to take responsibility for this failure and resign. In her drunken haze at home that night, she has a moment of clarity.

She got boxed into a corner because she is too willing to say yes, too accommodating, too willing to compromise herself. She is a pushover. With the kind of drunken conviction that either fizzles out or leads to momentous change, she vows no more. Starting now, Hajeong Park is nobody's fool. She will stand her ground, and she will find herself so she can stand up for it.

The next day she wakes as Chloé Battenberg. She's in a world that's low fantasy, but seems to be set in a world resulting from putting culture, politics, fashion, and food trends from between 16th and early 20th century into a nice vegetable soup. You can tell the ingredients apart, but the taste together is really good.

Damn, HBomberguy is right. Food metaphors in critique are dangerous.

Anyways, Chloé ends up using the power of tea to sort out her life and change the world. Frankly, I find this more plausible than some isekai.

But I want you to read through the prior paragraphs again. If you're sharp, you'll notice what's missing.

A romance novel. A game. A comic.

There was no fiction on Hajeong's side serving as a gate to her life as Chloé. And while we do get some metaphysics to explain what got Hajeong to being Chloé, and what happened to Original!Chloé...

I want you to notice what this means for Chloé's new life. She has no foreknowledge, no storyline, no insight into her cold husband until it is given in universe. She has some of OG!Chloé's memories, but that is in. Hajeong!Chloé has to think on her feet and figure things out as she goes. She has no meta knowledge, which makes watching her come to her own in the new world not just more grounded but downright compelling.

She does it all without meta. Or OP powers.

Well, other than tea.

So with only one OP power, it's an isekai. Give her a break.

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