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Author: lianayus from ECI
Photo credits: SBS
“I’m not a puppet who does what others tell me to, and walk a path that others have prepared for me. I want to create a world that belongs to me” – quote by Jang Keun Suk
“The trust of the innocent is the liar’s most useful tool” – quote by Stephen king
No matter how much In Jwa aims to take control of Daegil life, Daegil still stays true to his heart that is his wish to see others follow their dream. The story in this episode is not only about not being in control of your life and decision but about the trust. Trust between brothers, between the truth and half truth or complete lie and trust between mother, sons and father.
As much as he doubts In Jwa words, he has to find out the truth even if it’s a sacrilege thing to do. He cried his heart out as soon as he opens the empty coffin only to find an envelope inside. Inside the envelope holds the secret of what happen to Baek Man Geum. First person Daegil finds is Hong Mae, she is the last person who saw his ‘father’ that fateful day but she confirms she sent Man Geum body to In Jwa. The truth was In Jwa discovered Man Geum still breathing, he save him but for a purpose. The torn off paper they found in the envelope trace them to the medical doctor, he verified Man Geum miraculously alive but went missing.
Meanwhile Prince Yeoning keeps on hearing the one thing he despises all his life even if it’s the truth. In his brooding over it he was summon to see the king. Now he discovers the reason the king gave two days until In Jwa execution, to lure rebel Jeong. The king takes a chance as rebel Jeong is not an ordinary rebel, he’s more astute compared to In Jwa, so it’s a trap but would rebel Jeong take a bite. The king changes his mind as he wise up that rebel Jeong would never fall for his tricks. Rebel Jeong certainly has ears and eyes everywhere or else he would not manage to stay alive. In Jwa himself is not depending on rebel Jeong to save him, Daegil is his only hope. Prince Yeoning thought is in line with his father and he earn the army mobilization badge which controls 5 branches of the military. That is a powerful achievement he knows he deserves it, a mere water maid son has come so far.
Daegil being deep in his thought when he hears a mysterious voice seeking his answer for In Jwa fate, most of In Jwa trusted ally turn their back on him. Daegil attempted to find the person but he only found a “Jindallae Kkot” (azalea) flower that symbolize “stay or return soon”, the rebel Jeong trademark (the use of flower).
The Soron faction becomes restless because they knew with In Jwa execution they most probably will be next in line. The ministers seek the Crown Prince Yoon to push for an open investigation so In Jwa can be found innocent of the charge. The reason given is that if In Jwa is found guilty of treason it will harm the Crown Prince Yoon politically.
Prince Yeoning knows that rumors and gossip will ripple throughout the palace soon. He knows he has to be caution with the powers bestow to him, he need minister Kim Chang Jip and Noron faction help.
Trust between Daegil and Prince Yeoning is on trial with the discovery that Man Geum is still alive but the prince still helps Daegil meet In Jwa during late hours in an attempt to find out more from In Jwa. Daegil discovers while he insanely seeking for revenge on his dead ‘father’, Man Geum was in In Jwa care. In Jwa continues to persuade Daegil of his fate even Man Geum finally comes to accept Daegil is destines to be King. In Jwa added Man Geum knew all along the truth regarding Daegil bloodline. In Jwa persists to blackmail Daegil using his ‘father’ without any proof.
Daegil meet Dam Seo to investigate further without knowing that the Prince sent his bodyguard to follow him. Dam Seo was surprised but glad upon hearing the news, her guilt regarding this incident had been a burned for her. She advises Daegil not ever to stand at her teacher side. Both she and Daegil is letting go of their past, Daegil for his mistrust on her and she for feeling guilty.
At home everyone giving Daegil their support, even Master Kim Chae Gun gives his ‘life saving’ card for Daegil to use.
With In Jwa execution date coming soon anxiety and strain creep in Prince Yeoning usual meeting with him mother. To assure his mother he promises to arrange a visit with his brother (Daegil) to see her the next day. Later his bodyguard reports to him and that every plan is according to progress, it’s time to use the army mobilization badge. He even uses it to control Crown Prince Yoon the reason given that the Crown Prince Yoon needs protection but in actuality the crown prince was put under house arrest until the execution of In Jwa. Precaution need to be taken in all aspect to put In Jwa evil deed to a stop. All around security at the palace are tight and in place.
Dam Seo was surprised to see the palace guards surround her place, with a personal letter from Prince Yeoning asking her not to get involved. As everything is in order the last person Prince Yeoning has to secure is Daegil, he wants assurance from Daegil that his brother won’t change his mind. Even if he trusts Daegil, his doubts is persistent especially when Daegil informs him about his informal ‘meeting’ with the rebel Jeong, sword would be drawn if Daegil makes a wrong decision. At the same time he request Daegil to visit their mother early tomorrow morning. Daegil isstill confused which way to chose and everyone else, Suk Bin, the king and In Jwa are deep with their own thought.
The next day Daegil and Prince Yeoning meet with their beloved mother. Daegil already accepted her as his mother. It’s his duty as her son to visit her, how thankful Suk Bin with his answer. She wants to see In Jwa execution with her own eyes but with her weak condition it’s not permissible for her to attend it. Her last advises for both her sons is to trust and help one another, they are both bond by blood, they’re brothers after all. Afterwards they look deeply at each other, wondering each other thoughts.
Execution time finally come with Prince Yeoning himself had the pleasure to invite the key role, In Jwa to the main stage. Everything looks in position, even the executioner are dancing happily as everybody stand to witness the crucial event including rebel Jeong. In Jwa’s minion withdraw to their fate even In Jwa himself has a moment of resignation until Daegil went to confront him. For a second he still has hopes that Daegil will save him.
Actually Daegil himself still has not made his decision whether he forces to save In Jwa or not until up to the point when he saw his ‘father’ in the crowd. Slowly menacing smile creeping from Daegil and In Jwa immediately know his karma but at the last moment when the chopping sword coming down his neck, a shout save him. Suk Bin death save In Jwa……….. oh my god… it’s not time for him to die yet.
In Jwa wicked laugh made Daegil shout for the executioner to proceed but minister from the Soron faction announce it cannot continue until after Lady Choi’s funeral. This makes In Jwa laugh triumphantly for his good fortune driving Prince Yeoning insane with anger, he grabbed a sword to cut his head off. First time Prince Yeoning was stopped by his bodyguard, then stopped by Daegil who tells him that he will personally kill In Jwa by his own hands someday.
Then both of them running to see their beloved mother, Prince Yeoning tear up for the lost of a mother who was so dear to him and Daegil cry for the loving mother he manage to meet and getting to know. The king was shocked at turning point of event making his sickness more appearance. Daegil gives his mother her finally ritual privately with his close ‘family’, while Prince Yeoning found out he cannot be the principle mourner as he was officially adopt by Queen Inyeon…. this is so heartbreaking. Baek Man Geum also mourned for the former wife he badly treated.
Both minister from Soron and Noron faction arguing about the delay in execution because it’s not the right time, they have certain period to mourn Suk Bin death. Noron faction did not agree with Soron as for them the crimes are a serious offence. During the debat Prince Yeoning join them in the assembly hall to call for a delay out of respect for his dead mother.
Meanwhile at the temple Dam Seo receive a visitor, rebel Jeong and it’s not the first time he came. He convinces her to search deep in her heart whether she still goes ahead with her plan to kill In Jwa. That night she enter the prison by bribing the guard to see her teacher telling him that she will free him but that she will kill him afterwards. She then proceeds to give him the key, the last thing she can give it to him. Surprisingly In Jwa thrust the key back to her while explaining his true intention to her, he sacrificing himself for his belief for a better Joseon. It also reveals Dam Seo true emotion towards her teacher.
Dam Seo left the prison with her discovery not knowing the rebel Jeong is watching her. He notices that In Jwa takes responsibility for Dam Seo suffering so in that sense Daegil and Prince Yeoning should take responsibility for In Jwa and the rest of the people suffering as well or could it be he think In Jwa should take responsibility for Daegil and Prince Yeoning suffering as well because the first plan begin with In Jwa convincing Suk Bin to seduce the king (not sure of rebel Jeong real meaning).
As Prince Yeoning pays a visit to his mother’s grave, a meeting between the king and Crown Prince Yoon begin with an angry demand from the king regarding crown prince constant support for In Jwa. During their angry exchange the king found out that all along crown prince knew about In Jwa trick with the baduk stone (crown prince took out the white baduk stone) but still chose to depend on In Jwa because he’s the only one who reached out for him during his despondent time.
The king had a terrible sense of loss, unable to comprehend how his son could so willingly fall for Injwa’s deceit, to the point where the crown prince becomes so dependable on In Jwa. The king cannot control his rage any longer as the crown prince continue to argue that not only In Jwa advocate, protect and give him strength but gave him power, and even promised to put him on the throne.
The king stood up, draws his sword and stagger towards him obviously ill, grab the crown prince by his clothing at the same time pointing his sword at his son throat…… suddenly the king unable to catch his breath as he turn to look at his medical smoke from the incense then looking back at his son before crumple on top of him.
I’m cannot be my witty self, thought I would get a kiss episode but ending up with a very very tragic one, I cry my heart out for both of our lead. WOW!!! But what a wonderful acting all around, Jang Keun Suk is amazing as usual but Jinggo is great too especially the tear up part. Well done JKS for choosing this drama, my husband who is not an eel was so much in love with it and rave about it every day. Last night during episode 17 (re-watch), out of the blue he said JKS is very handsome (usually he will said beautiful 🙂 ) OK enough with my chattering here are my thought:-
I notice that Prince Yeoning does not trust his brother as much as Daegil trusts him maybe because he’s grown up in the palace full of deceit. Prince Yeoning mentions a few times that he trusts Daegil but deep in his heart there are doubts, lingering doubts. Maybe that’s the reason he asks his bodyguard to follow Daegil. I think this is one of the reason Suk Bin advised both her sons the importance to trust each other.
From the look of resentment on the face of Crown Prince, the trust between Prince Yeoning and Crown Prince has been broken with the action of Prince Yeoning to the Crown Prince during the night before In Jwa execution.
As for Daegil he lost his trust in Dam Seo as a good person after his farther was ‘killed’ but he started trusting her again as he set her free of her guilt over his father killing. So far the trust Daegil has for his ‘father’ Man Geum is still strong as ever but this could change later on.
I find Kim Chae Gun also trusts Daegil to make a right decision by giving him the ‘life saving’ card.
And finally I notice In Jwa trusts his talent to manipulate people too much. He learned his lesson here, if not for Suk Bin passing he already lost his head. [END]