The central theme in the Tale of Kieu appears to be human abilities and shortcomings. Thuc Ky Tam’s character is a good example of a man who owns both of these characteristics. Thuc appears as a client of the brothel in which Kieu is seized. His family is explained as a well up family and he was operating a trading shop. This implies that Thuc was both learned and well up. However Thuc was also a passionate man. The moment he noticed the beauty of Kieu, he never hesitated beckoning her to love. Soon Thuc and Kieu got engaged. Although she was moved by his love, she sensed that Thuc was married. Thuc showed that he was a crafty man by hiding away Kieu from the brothel and paying money to madam, Dame Tu, for her freedom (Nguyen 67).
When Thuc’s father learnt that he had married a prostitute, he was furious; however Thuc’s love to Kieu would not be moved. Although Thuc’s father issued him with a warning to either return Kieu to the brothel or face a judge, Thuc was unwavering in his commitment to Kieu, Which resulted to Thuc marrying Kieu. Thuc’s shortcomings start to be portrayed when he returns home; he revived his relationship with Miss Hoan who was his first wife. Rather than saying the truth, he decided to remain silent which was a big error as Miss Hoan was conscious of her husband’s relationship. This led her wife to send thugs who burnt Kieu’s house and kidnapped her, turning her to a slave (87).
After several months, Thuc found out that his wife was the one who had kidnapped Kieu. This was after Miss Hoan brought Kieu before Thuc, who just watched the scene in a shock. However Miss Hoan allowed Kieu to turn into a nun in the shrine. Later on, Thuc asked Kieu to disappear from the temple because he was afraid that more trouble would befall her, if she continued to stay in the temple. When Thuc met Kieu again, it was contrary to the previous circumstance. Kieu had become the companion of a revolutionary warrior named as Tu Hai. Thuc was packed with terror when he was brought before Kieu. In conclusion, Thuc is portrayed as a dishonest, double minded person for having not been able to protect his engagement with Kieu because of the fear of his wife miss Hoan.