In the wake of our leading lady’s injury, a smitten crown prince stays by her side, nursing her and ensuring she receives everything she needs to fully recover. Also, it seems like the recent serial murder case has more to do with the mysteries surrounding our leads than we were led to believe.
We open the episode with Hwan nursing Jae-yi by her side. It won’t be an overstatement if we say that if not for the crown prince’s duties, Hwan would stick by Jae-yi’s side day and night, much to the dismay of Tae-gang, who is slightly forced to brew Jae-yi’s medicine since they can’t have a physician treat her.
After being out of it for a whole day, Jae-yi finally opens her eyes. The first thing we get is a funny bickering between her and Tae-gang after she drinks the medicine he brewed specially for her and eats a delicious dried persimmon to make the bitter taste disappear.
Now that she passed the test, does Hwan finally trust Jae-yi? But it has been a long time since Hwan started entrusting her. Maybe it is from the very start. There is no way the righteous lord Min would have raised his daughter to be a murderer.
Seeing how much Hwan cherishes Jae-yi, the other eunuchs get jealous and plan to give her a hard time. But all these attempts fail since each time Jae-yi is given an exhausting task, Hwan calls for her to either have a seat or eat a delicious tangerine she has never seen before. If Hwan is busy, he will send Tae-gang to make Jae-yi take her medicine and savor a sweet dried persimmon afterward.
Meanwhile, hearing that Jae-yi was injured, Ga-ram gets anxious. But to pick up some news from the palace, Ga-ram needs to reach out to Myung-jin, who is now locked up as a punishment for returning home wholly wasted. Hoping she might catch a glance of Myung-jin, Ga-ram heads to his house.
But who said that Myung-jin would stay still for long? When Ga-ram tries to peek over the wall, she spots Myung-jin trying to sneak out. After a seesaw game of sorts, we get a Joseon version of crash landing on you. Except Myung-jin doesn’t land in Ga-ram’s arms but on the floor.
Now that they caught the culprit of the serial murder case, it is time to revisit Jae-yi’s family’s murder case. According to the records, 1) Jae-yi had been earning how to look for a few months prior to that incident, 2) She was the one who cooked breakfast that day and put poison into the soup, 3) She had a fight with her father since she didn’t want to marry Sung-on but her lover with whom she had matching jade bracelets.
Number one might be true, but it is because Jae-yi was about to get married. Also, she was the one who cooked breakfast that day, but the soup was fine when she tasted it before ladling it into the bowls, which means someone added the poison after the food was served. She indeed bought the poison, but it was for studying. As for the so-called lover, he was like a brother to her who taught her how to fight with a sword.
Before they can solve the mystery behind the Min family’s death, Hwan and Jae-yi have to explore the ghost letter issue. Also, who knows? Seeing how the shaman returned from her visit to Jae-yi’s hometown around the same time Jae-yi’s family was killed, perhaps all those incidents are concocted by the same mastermind, from the ghost letter, to the arrow incident, to the Min family’s murder, to the blood droplets, to the serial murder case. Everything might be tangled up together.
Since no matter how hard she tries, Jae-yi can’t remember anything related to the secret letter sent among the wedding gifts, they will start their investigation by rechecking the shaman’s house in case the police missed any clues.
If Hwan wants, he can send scholar Park along. He may be bad at shoveling and has no clue how to eat soup at a tavern, but he is good at escaping from the guards patrolling at night. But doesn’t scholar Park have lessons to review? Oops, it looks like scholar Park can’t tag along this time.
Before heading to the shaman’s house, Jae-yi stops by the expectant mother’s house to check on her and the baby and drop off some gifts from Hwan. Jae-yi learns that Sung-on also dropped by to give the family some fabric and cotton and check on them.
Afterward, Jae-yi heads to the shaman’s place, where she runs into Sung-on, who mistakes her for an intruder. Though that visit doesn’t provide Jae-yi with any significant clues other than some dried petals in the incense burner, which might turn out useful later, it gives room for a much-needed conversation between Jae-yi and Sung-on who doesn’t realize she is his ex-fiancée.
Hwan didn’t send Jae-yi there as he didn’t trust Sung-on. Both Jae-yi and Sung-on caught the shaman jointly. Had it not been for Sung-on’s help, Jae-yi wouldn’t have made it through. I hope we aren’t getting an inferiority complex case yet again. Sung-on is understandably hurt that Hwan seems to trust Jae-yi more, but he should talk it out instead of holding it in until the feelings of hurt turn into resentment.
While Jae-yi is busy checking out the dried petals, some shocking news reaches Sung-on and Hwan’s ears. The so-called lover was caught…. dead. Beside him were a suicide note and a jade bracelet, which he allegedly had as a token of his love for Jae-yi. We end the episode with a mad Hwan calling for Jae-yi to ask her if she has been in love with another man yet again.
After all they went through together, Hwan should know better than to trust a sheet of paper over Jae-yi’s words. Also, didn’t anyone notice how that so-called lover’s hair turned white like the shaman’s? Couldn’t anyone stop for a second and suspect it wasn’t suicide but murder?
Now that we might have a single mastermind behind all those incidents, does it mean it isn’t right-state councilor Jo? I mean, he seemed really genuine when he denied being involved with the blood droplets incident. Anyway, it is still too soon to be sure of anything. But one thing is for sure, I don’t want to see Sung-on turning on Hwan for either jealousy or a mere inferiority complex. If that arc is inevitable, please give us a more convincing reason, writer-nim.