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Author: Vita Catherine Ione Isaac from ECI
Photo credits: SBS
Ep 10… whew.. before watching this episode, I had this notion that Ep 10, being close to the mid part of the series, must be critical, if not pivotal for the whole series — and I was not disappointed!
I really don’t know how to describe this episode.. cannot find an exact word here other than intense!!
If you’re a fangirl, specially an eel, at the same time a Korean drama lover, what can I say… this episode has it all! This episode made me swoon “oh my god, oh my god!” halfway through the show.. making me pause.. then start again.. to calm my faint heart.
But okay, setting me aside, let me give you a recap of how the story unfolds on this one —
Part I. The Teacher and the Assassin
This is where we left off from Ep 9, the meeting and fight between Kim Chae Gun and Hwang Jin Ki. A fated meet up. Thanks to Master Chae Gun, Dae Gil was able to escape from this sticky situation, but that did not hinder Dae Gil from challenging Jin Ki to survive this round.
On the other side of the village and in the mountains, the two escapees – Yeoning and Dam Seo found a spot to hide. Yeoning tends to the wounded and unconscious Dam Seo, which surprised Dam Seo the moment she woke up. (Me: I found this part a little lighter, with them bickering at each other). Dam Seo stressed that Yeoning should not help her because they are enemies, and told Yeoning to stop whatever he plans to do, which Yeoning countered with the same advice.
Yeoning strolled for a moment to look for medicinal herbs when Dae Gil finally caught up to them, and with him are the medicinal herbs.
Dae Gil managed to tease Yeoning over the fact the Yeoning doesn’t have friends, and that Dae Gil can be one (ahh..brotherly love, if they only knew). Dae Gil then “handed” over Dam Seo to Yeoning’s care, knowing that Yeoning is more suitable to take care of her. (-_-)
A brief ‘intimate’ moment between Yeoning and Dam Seo when Yeoning challenged Dam Seo to kill him. Dam Seo seemed not to hesitate until she was about to stab Yeoning’s chest – she cannot do it. Yeoning made her realize that.
Fast forward in the morning, Yeoning finds himself alone. He found Dam Seo’s letter written in the used bandage, with her request not to notice her anymore.
Dam Seo walks away confronted by the twin guards and taken away to –surprise of all surprise—the king, her second face to face encounter with the king. (Seems as if the intensity at this very moment has just started!)
Without further ado, the king, took his moment to reveal to Dam Seo who the killer of her father is, and that is none other than her highly respected Teacher, Yi In Jwa. Slightly recovering from last night’s incident, Dam Seo is now confronted with fear, shock, anger effortlessly inscribed in her face and tears.
We then see Yeoning summoned by his Father.. not noticing Dam Seo on his way.. then Yeoning advised by the king, that the person he has protected over night is already gone.. we simultaneously see here Yeoning taking a look at a corpse of a girl with the symbol Six Ghost – now look here, how In Jwa and the king plotted this very moment, only they know.
The real and living Dam Seo then goes back to her Teacher, as expected by in Jwa, but now with that satisfying (okay, I’m referring to the viewers’ satisfaction here) poker face towards In Jwa. The time has come for her to realize the truth and.. surprisingly easily resign from her Teacher. You can see In Jwa’s calm posture while she bids her goodbye…but oh my god.. how the intensity creeps on me.. on how they showed In Jwa’s realization of losing a knight.)
In the castle, barely recovering from the thought of Dam Seo passing away, we then see an astounded Yeoning seeing the ministers from Noron, led by Kim Chang Jib. These ministers, who, after witnessing Yeoning’s command and bravery at last night’s event, now voluntarily surrenders under his mercy. (Mind going forward, uh oh.. the tension has now been created between him and the currently Crowned Prince.. and seconding Yeoning’s thought.. is this also part of the king’s plan?)
With the Noron ministers and Yeoning gaining power, we now see the merchants siding with them, and so, the slightly shaken Yi In Jwa who we know has just lost Dam Seo, has confronted his former comrades, the merchants, of the current situation. Will Yi In Jwa slowly show his fangs? We see it on the assembly that he called between the merchants. To Yi In Jwa’s dismay, he was confronted with confident merchants, not shaken by his sneer and indirect threats. He knew that aside from losing a knight, we lost a number of pawns.
It seems the answer (if Yi In Jwa will show his fangs) need not wait any longer, however. With Yi In Jwa assessing that the merchants, particularly the head merchant, were already decided, he made his move. Just when the head merchant was about to leave the room, he was stabbed by YI In Jwa’s assistant (sorry, forgot his name >,<), followed by a stab from Yi In Jwa himself. Witnessing his horrible side, the merchants asked that their lives be spared, and Yi In Jwa made it clear to them that it will be the same fate of anyone who betrays him.
The news of the missing head merchant reached Yeoning. Upon hearing that Yi In Jwa was also at the place where the incident took place, he took the initial investigation in his hand.
Yeoning, along with his personnel, decided to check place where the head merchant was last seen. Using his detective skills (as I call it), Yeoning reenacted in his head the “should be” scene when the head merchant was about to leave the place. And to Yeoning’s instinct, he checked to doorway using a vinegar solution which reveals blood, and alas, he discovered it.
At the next scene, we see Yeoning summoned by the king. The king has apparently been aware of him investigating a murder case himself. With the king’s assessment of the situation, the king realized that the issue between the merchant, the Noron faction and the Soron faction, stems from the fact that they are anticipating Yeoning’s rise of power. After hearing from Yeoning that Yi In Jwa is again involved in the incident, the king ordered Yeoning to leave but did not elaborate further.
Part II. The Tiger Has Come
Here is Dae Gil, chopping woods and seems to be agitated. No wonder, his mind is on Dam Seo who seemed to have ‘ended’ things between them. Add to that, the sight that confronted him in the mountains, Yeoning and Dam Seo in each other’s arms.
And time went by —
After passing of four seasons, we now see Dae Gil and Dae Gil’s sharp skills – for an eel heart, this is a feast. We see Dae Gil effortlessly cutting a cherry petal using his new sword, shooting the 1 yang with an arrow, shielding himself from arrows (plus the water, lovely). Kim Chae Gun cannot hide his admiration towards his student.
While having their usual meal, Kim Chae Gun openly shares his thoughts towards Dae Gil, on how he sees Dae Gil in a man he knew, a man who has faced life and death, a tiger, a king of the mountains. (Well we know who he’s referring to kkk). Dae Gil promised that he will become a man with the same character, a king of the mountains. Suddenly, Kim Chae Gun tells Dae Gil that it’s time for him to go down.
An emotional moment between a pupil and a Master ;( Dae Gil tells Kim Chae Gun how thankful he is to him, and that he will live his life for his Master. And then he left.
Yi In Jwa is shown having thoughts of his discussion with the shaman. The shaman told Yi In Jwa that she can no longer see Dae Gil because of his great power, which no equates Yi In Jwa’s. They were interrupted by Hong Mae who advised Yi In Jwa that she has already gathered a group of men at his request (Me: Is Yi In Jwa forming an army or something?).
And so we get to know some additional characters in the story – Hwanghae, the Cutter; Gol Sa, the Fraud; and Six Ghost. (We’ll see how they’ll be involved with our heroes.)
On their fateful gathering, Yi In Jwa revealed that he would need them to target a certain person going around cities, taking down his gambling rooms into bankruptcy. And that person is none other than Beak Man Geum’s son. In between this scene, we see Dae Gil playing along card sharks and winning. Now dressed in a noble outfit, and man..with a mask *,*. Yi In Jwa is anticipating that Dae Gil will arrive at Hanyang soon. In the middle of their meeting, a masked man interrupted them. (Me: omo, is this Dae Gil already?)
In another place, another masked man arrived, placing a bet on the playful gisaengs. The owner of the place where the bet was made found the mask familiar, and recognized the man, or so he thought. In a moment, the masked man was already on his side. The owner thought that he was talking to Baek Myung (or Yi In Jwa), but was surprised to see that the owner of the mask is none other than Yeoning (what a coincidence for the brothers!). Yeoning told the owner that he will come after Beak Myung and crush him.
Back to Yi In Jwa’s gathering, we found out that the masked man is Dae Gil, who has come prepared to crush Yi In Jwa, too. Yi In Jwa asked if Dae Gil has already become a tiger but was lightly teased by Dae Gil. Dae Gil promised to bring the gambling room down, along with taking Yi In Jwa’s arms, legs and throat. What will happen next? Let’s see!!
Some random thoughts:
It seems that Dam Seo’s previous emotionless character gave an advantage for she has shown varying degrees of emotions in this episode – fear, frustration, anger, enlightenment – which she has clearly conveyed to the viewers (or well, to me, kkk).
And look at In Jwa, even at the point of being caught, he still managed to place the blame on Dam Seo’s father (“it is your father’s conviction”), instead of owning it up. What do I expect, it is In Jwa. I’m just glad Dam Seo’s now free from his manipulation.
I personally, consistently love the king’s character. In this episode, I’ve grown to understand him more. Although he is in a high position, he personally settled the matter with Dam Seo. Objectively, he analyzed the movements of the merchants towards the Noron and Yeoning, although his thought of handling this case is still a mystery.
I love the fate of the brothers, the coincidences, the unintentional support that they give to each other, and their main goal – Yi In Jwa. It is Dae Gil’s third encounter with Yi In Jwa, and let’s see how the ball gets rolling.
I’ll finish with these thoughts, lol, or it will seem like a novel. [END]Share on Facebook