a novel by priest

"Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."
— Matthew 7:14

tags: coming of age, couple growth, misunderstandings, modern day, HE
69 chapters + extras
cp: dou xun x xu xilin (douxu)
"hate at first sight" to friends to lovers to exes to lovers again

last updated: Mar. 18th 2022

based on my own personal interpretation

Guomen follows the story of Xu Xilin and Dou Xun starting from the adolescence to adulthood. If it had to be summarized with a sentence without going into spoiler territory, this would probably be the ideal one.

However Guomen, for me, is about the life itself; with all the ups and downs, joys and sorrows, success and failure and the mix of all. It's about the deskmate you had in highschool, the neighbour next door, the passersby you brushed shoulders with on the street and it's about you.

Priest's writing brings out the emotions so raw and sincere and lays them out for you not to read but feel. The issues covered are handled with care and realistically. It tells about the mundane life, family disputes, the battles people fight with their environment and inner selves, sometimes losing and sometimes conquering these battles in a way that makes it relatable and touches a spot deep within your heart. What made me personally connect with Guomen was how it's able to make readers feel heard in how it represents the topics mentioned before. There might be times where you might find yourself facing and reflecting on your own life and your environment because you see yourself in the characters.

The arrow below will show the content warnings in case you need to avoid anything specific, though it will have spoilers.

content warnings:
-Physical violence
-Death of family members
-Death of family pets
-Dubcon (briefly; also there are no explicit scenes in the story)
-Body-shaming (briefly)
-Child neglect
-Child abuse
-Murder (no graphic depictions)
-Forced coming out/being outed
-Stereotyping Filipinos (mentioned in one sentence, you can dm me to ask about it)

based on my own personal interpretation of the characters

Xu Xilin (徐西临)

-16-20 years old (in the flashback), 28-30 years old (present time)
-Troublemaker kid of the class that you have no choice but to love and be angry with him at the same time
-Called "group leader Xu" by his classmates
-Parents divorced when he was small,
raised by his mom and grandma
-Ambitious, dedicated, tries hard to do his best
-Self acceptance issues :(
-Please give him a hug he needs it

Dou Xun (窦寻)

-16-20 years old (in the flashback), 28-30 years old (present time)
-Called Douxian'r (bean paste) by Xu Xilin
-Transfer student in Xu Xilin's high school
-Academically gifted, a genius
-Kinda unsocial
-Family issues, anger issues, abandonment issues, you name it
-Feels sooo intensely oh boy
-Please give him a hug too

Click on the arrow below to see the side characters ^_^

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(all pics used in making of this carrd are official art from audio drama)

Thank you so much for checking out this carrd. Should you have any feedbacks and/or questions you can find me here ^_^

Xu Jin
-Xu Xilin's mother (he took his mother's surname, not his father's)
-A powerful woman raising her child on her own
-Mom goals tbh

Grandma Xu
-Lives with her daughter and her grandson
-Loves to sing and dress up
-An elegant lady I love her

Auntie Du
-Housekeeper of the Xu house
-Been working with Xu family for ten years, Xu Xilin considers her family

Dou Dou
-Xu family's dog

Cai Jing
-Close friend of Xu Xilin from high school
-1/4 of four misfits
-Comes from a poor family
-Shy and timid, his friends take care of him a lot

Lao Cheng
-Close friend of Xu Xilin from highschool
-1/4 of four misfits

Song Lianyuan
-Boss of Half Moon, a bar quite popular with Xu Xilin's friendgroup
-Called Song-ge by Xu Xilin
-Xu Xilin has known him since he was little so he respects him a lot

Gao Lan
-First met with Xu Xilin in a business meeting, became a family friend later on
-A queen, an icon, you will stan her

Shuai Shuai
-Douxu's son grey parrot you may have seen people talking about on your timeline
-Name given by an acquaintance's little daughter

Read to find out who the rest of the four misfits are and why they are "misfits" :')