Whilst one man is aware of what Hong Joo’s capable of, another lives in ignorance and makes devastating choices. Sunjo’s broken away from Hong Joo’s hold and gets cured. Hong Joo’s shown for who she really is but is broken out of jail by Poong Yeon. And Poong Yeon commits the ultimate betrayal.
Top 10 Moments:
- Sunjo agrees to be cured by Jun and Poong Yeon walks right into Hong Joo’s hands
After Jun tells him that he would attempt to cure him, Sunjo is as expected leery of Jun being able to do anything, considering the fact that several doctors had not been able to cure him. Jun’s explains that that’s because Sunjo’s ailment which is caused by Hong Joo’s black magic is not something that medicine can cure. But Sunjo points out that he distrusts Jun’s words as much as he now distrusts Hong Joo and asks him to leave. Jun though is able to convince him by pointing out that Sunjo will feel miserable should he kill the princess and his disease still remain. The words are enough and Sunjo agrees but gives Jun only a day to find a cure (seriously though dude. You gave Hong Joo weeks, maybe even months but Jun only gets a day? How’s that fair?), if not, he will kill both Jun and Hong Joo. Jun agrees but asks Sunjo to lock up Hong Joo for the day, so she won’t be able to use her black magic (hope they’re locking her in a cell without her black cauldron). Meanwhile, Hong Joo shows herself to Poong Yeon to explain to him that Hyun Seo’s powers were passed on to him. She tells him that it’s a good thing because only fire is the only thing that can destroy the curse, meaning Poong Yeon has the power to save Yeon Hee (and of course idiotic Poong Yeon buys the crap she’s spewing). She even sweetens the deal by telling him that he can ask Hyun Seo for advise if he’s conflicted. With those words, Poong Yeon heads to his father’s temple where dark Hyun Seo’s waiting for him. Dark Hyun Seo confirms Hong Joo’s words that only the holy flames can destroy the curse. He even goes as far as telling Poong Yeon that the fire would only kill the cursed princess and Yeon Hee would be fine, stating that it was something he should have already done when Yeon Hee was a baby, but he hadn’t. So Hyun Seo advises Poong Yeon to follow Hong Joo’s orders and Poong Yeon who is at the moment not even a whit suspicious of his own father telling him to follow the black Shamaness, seems to buy the words.
2. Jun gets a good look at the king’s illness and learns the truth about Hyun Seo
Sunjo keeps his words and has Hong Joo locked up stating that he intends to follow her command so he can live, but just needs her in a cell for that day alone. She doesn’t know exactly why and when one of her henchgirls informs her that Jun is with the king, she doesn’t see it as a reason to blow things out of proportion. Instead, she willingly enters a cell (good. No black cauldron then). Meanwhile, in the throne room, Jun suggests Sunjo strip so he can get a good look at his affliction (hahahaha. That so sounded dirty in my head). Sunjo pulls off his robe to show his thorny skin which reacts when Jun touches it. Wanting to confirm Jun’s words from the previous night, Sunjo asks Jun if he has proof that it’s really black magic that caused his ailment. Jun doesn’t and Sunjo gets mad. When Jun tries to explain that Sunjo has to trust him as his doctor, Sunjo warns him against blabbing because Jun only has a day to cure him otherwise he’d been tossing Jun’s decapitated head at Yeon Hee. Meanwhile, at the Taoist temple, dark Hyun Seo, working on Hong Joo’s orders, tries strangling the truth of what Jun is doing with the king, from Yo Gwang. Hyun Seo finally returns to himself and has to struggle with the urge to not return to his dark side. Except, Jun had gotten an eyeful already. Outside the taoist temple, Yo Gwang explains to Jun that Hyun Seo had practically exhausted himself with his making of Yeon Hee’s talisman and now he’s almost completely driven by black magic, and unfortunately, there is nothing any of them can do to help.
3. Finding the cause of Sunjo’s illness
After informing Yo Gwang that he’d thoroughly searched the entirety of Sunjo’s body and hadn’t found anything that indicated black magic on it, Jun suggests that they go through the spell books, which is where Yo Gwang realizes that Hong Joo might have used an incantation to cause the illness, meaning there wouldn’t visible marks. And sure enough, we see when Hong Joo had cast the spell that everyone would want to kill Sunjo, look down on him and Sunjo will never be able to escape his pain. As she’d spoken, the illness had taken root. Because of the difficulty of the spell however, Yo Gwang tells Jun that they would have to find its source. Except, finding the source in itself is not something that can easily be done. This then leads to Jun talking with dark Hyun Seo who’s Hong Joo’s mouthpiece. Hong Joo laughs at the thought of Jun trying to cure Sunjo and speaks through Hyun Seo that there’s no way to find the root of the curse and Jun should just accept fate. Jun though doesn’t believe that Hyun Seo’s the one speaking, telling Hyun Seo that Hyun Seo had always wanted to protect Yeon Hee and so would haven’t left her life hanging in the balance like that (see what happened right there? Here’s a man who has only know Hyun Seo for a short while and can immediately spot when Hyun Seo’s not the one speaking. Whilst Poong Yeon who’s lived with his father all his life couldn’t tell the difference). The words work as Hyun Seo starts to battle within himself and even as Hong Joo’s demanding that Hyun Seo’s soul and mind is hers Hyun Seo’s able to sneak it in that Jun should go through the Grimoire of curses.
4. Seo Ri helps whilst Hyun Seo sabotages
Jun and Yo Gwang then head to Seo Ri’s cell, using a talisman to disguise themselves as guards. Once in and after Jun sweetly confirms that Seo Ri is alright (awwww), Jun tells Seo Ri about Hyun Seo mentioning that they should be able to find a way to show that Sunjo’s illness is as a result of black magic, seeing that black magic finds its way through a person’s illness. Seo Ri suggests that they brew a truth elixir so that Sunjo can reveal all that’s in his heart, although she does caution Jun that it wouldn’t work if Sunjo himself doesn’t want to tell the truth. Surprised that Hyun Seo helped them, she mentions Hyun Seo’s visit to her cell with Hong Joo and tries to confirm that it was really Hyun Seo that Jun had spoken to. Jun simply holds her hand and tells her everything will be alright. When Yo Gwang tries to get Seo Ri out of the cell anyway, figuring that they can continue to try lighting the candles whilst on the run, Seo Ri refuses to leave as she states that she will remain until her innocence has been confirmed and then she can leave with full confidence. Jun and Yo Gwang then spend the night brewing the portion and when they’re called away by Queen Shim who grills them and warns them that they’d better not do anything that would backfire and lead to Yeon Hee being hurt, Hyun Seo, who is being controlled by Hong Joo enters the room and infuses the truth portion with black magic (no.no.no. Why the hell did the two of them have to go together to see Queen Shim though? Why can’t one of them stay behind especially when they know that Hong Joo is aware of what they’re trying to do? Argh!).
5. Everything backfires
Jun, unaware that Hong Joo’s infused the serum with dark magic takes it to Sunjo and serves it to him. Sunjo is surprised that Jun wants him to drink something that Jun who is not a physician has made. Jun though reminds him that he’s willing to do anything for Yeon Hee and it is with those feelings that he’s brewed the portion. When Sunjo means to drink the portion, one of the eunuchs at the palace advises him not to as Jun isn’t someone Sunjo should trust, but Sunjo, staring at Jun, drinks the elixir. Except, the minute he drinks it, it starts to strangle him and Sunjo gives his commands to his soldiers to kill Jun. Jun is led out of the throne room where he runs into Yo Gwang who he tells about the king fainting after he’d drank the portion. Morning brings Hong Joo to Seo Ri’s cell where she laughs that it’s the end for Seo Ri, and that it’s a pathetic end indeed. Seo Ri doesn’t consider it over though, because Hong Joo’s still alive. When she asks what Hong Joo did to Hyun Seo, Hong Joo tells her that Hyun Seo died from making the talisman for Seo Ri and she then brought him back to life. She adds that they are now so connected that should Hong Joo die, then Hyun Seo will die as well, which means every pain that Hong Joo feels when Seo Ri lights a candle, then Hyun Seo will feel it too (don’t listen to her Seo Ri! When your mother lit a candle with her granted wish, it was only Hong Joo that was in pain. Hyun Seo was just fine). Seo Ri simply replies that she will return Hyun Seo back to normal so Hong Joo will never be able to touch him again. Hong Joo merely tells her to go ahead and try and smiles as Seo Ri is dragged off by her henchgirls.
6. Finding the root of Sunjo’s curse
Jun is dragged before Sunjo who tells him that Jun’s failed to keep his promise and now it’s Sunjo’s turn to keep his by killing both Jun and Seo Ri. At the words, Seo Ri is dragged into the room and Sunjo informs her and Jun that they will both die by drowning. When Queen Shim enters the room and begs for her daughter’s life stating that should Seo Ri die, then the curse on the royal family will worsen, Sunjo orders her back to her quarters, stating that she is next to be executed. Jun though interrupts to ask if Sunjo’s afraid of Seo Ri or Hong Joo. He asks if Sunjo is scared of losing the throne and asks what Sunjo’s so scared of that he’s been rendered to what he presently is. He points out the fact that Sunjo has the most power and authority out of all of them gathered in the room but Sunjo snaps back at him that he is well aware that they all call him a cruel tyrant behind his back, which is why Seo Ri had tried to kill him. Seo Ri immediately tells him that she hadn’t been trying to kill him but had wanted to protect him from Hong Joo’s evil plans. When Jun confirms that there are people who actually want to protect Sunjo, Sunjo refuses to believe it as he screams that everyone wants to kill him and pry his power away from him. At the words, Jun rises as he asks why Sunjo had believed him, trusted him and drank the potion then, rather than disregarding Jun’s words as lies. He asks Sunjo if Sunjo hadn’t done so all so that he can protect the throne. When he asks if Sunjo wants to give up the throne, Sunjo grabs him and warns him that should he continue speaking he would kill him. Jun doesn’t stop though as he tells Sunjo that Sunjo had wanted to make an example of them to those who say he has no right to be the king. When he tells Sunjo that Sunjo wants to be acknowledged as the rightful leader of the country, the spell mark behind Sunjo’s ear flares up and Sunjo agrees. Stating that he wanted to be acknowledged by everyone. He asks Jun if Jun actually thinks he’d wanted to be king and points to the throne as he tells Jun that Jun has no idea the amount of pressure and fear that comes with being on the throne. As he speaks, he tears up and even Queen Shim looks downcast as Sunjo continues that people look down on him because he’s a half-relative to the royal family and they spread malicious rumors about him, made fun of him and even attempted to kill him. He tells Jun that he wanted to do his best too, and he wanted to be a good king to his subjects. But no matter how hard he tries, nothing works. He cries as he states that now, because of his illness, there’s nothing he can do for the country anymore. He cries and makes to walk back to the throne, only to fall to the floor spitting out black blood. And immediately he does so, the spell mark behind his ear fades. Sunjo pulls back the sleeves of his robe and before his eyes, the thorns disappear. He looks up at Jun, shocked, and Jun tells him that that’s the black magic that has been plaguing Sunjo’s body all this while. Up in the mountain, another candle is lit and in Hong Joo’s temple, she falls down in pain and torns appear on one of her arms.
7. Sunjo turns on Hong Joo
Sunjo has Hong Joo dragged from her temple to the throne room where he asks her if she’d really thought that she would survive after what she’d done to him. Hong Joo feigns ignorance and Queen Shim snaps at her as she tells her not to deny the curse she’d placed on the royal family. Hong Joo though, claims that she didn’t curse the royal family and all she’s used her powers to do was to carry out what they all wanted, starting from Queen Shim who wanted an heir at all costs and Sunjo who was willing to kill the princess so Hong Joo could help cure him of his ailment. Sunjo is amazed at her audacity and agrees that he can’t punish Hong Joo at the expense of disgracing the royal family. However…. At the words, he has Jun and the Red Gentleman’s Mask Robe brought in and Hong Joo’s shocked. Sol Gae takes off her mask and when Sunjo asks her about the crimes she’s committed, she admits to having killed people under Hong Joo’s orders and that she’d brought her their hearts which Hong Joo had used for her black magic. With nothing left to lose, Hong Joo asks Sunjo what he’s going to do to her then? Is he going to tear her into little pieces? She casts a disdainful look at all of them, stating that the royal family stays the same: weak and cowardly and using people. She turns to Jun and warns him that he too will soon be discarded after he’s been used by them (oh, you mean the way you used Sol Gae and then discarded her after you were done?). Sunjo calls for the guards and growls to Hong Joo that he would have her torn from limb to limb. With those words, he has her led out of the palace and Poong Yeon is able to see her being led away, and Sol Gae, who is still wearing the red robes and holding onto the mask.
8. Ok remains an unaware idiot, Yo Gwang delivers bad news and Poong Yeon’s still a friend.
Unaware of everything that’s happening at the palace, Ok sits with his friends, drinking and laughing as he claims that he’s somewhat captured Jun and Jun is at the moment rotting away in a cell. When his friends ask him what happened, he tells them that Jun had tried poisoning the king and had been captured. He concludes that Jun would probably be torn from limb to limb and his friends tsk about how much of an unlucky person Jun is. As Ok explains to his friends that if Jun had just laid low, then none of the things that happened would have happened to him, royal guards come running in to arrest Ok for lying to the king. Meanwhile Jun is with Seo Ri and Yo Gwang at the Taoist temple where Seo Ri is searching for Hyun Seo. Seo Ri, remembering Hong Joo’s words asks Yo Gwang if it’s true that Hyun Seo is technically dead. Yo Gwang confirms it and states that Hyun Seo is only moving at the moment due to the black magic and so if they break the spell, Hyun Seo would return to normal but will most likely die on the spot. Yo Gwang also confirms that should Hong Joo die, then Hyun Seo would most likely die as well. And on the other side of town, Poong Yeon, in a mask fights with guards to get to the prisons where he comes face to face with Sol Gae. When he confirms that Sol Gae really was the Red Gentleman’s Robe, he asks her how foolish she must have thought him, searching all the while with him for the Red Gentleman’s Robe. When Sol Gae tries to explain her reasons, he cuts in, stating that he’d thought of her as a friend and had been grateful for her efforts. He then asks if all the time she’d spent with him had been because of her ulterior motives. When Sol Gae turns around and tells him to never forgive her, he unlocks her cell and tells her to leave, as he still considers her his friend and that would be his last act of friendship to her. After he’s done with Sol Gae, he moves on to Hong Joo’s cell and she smiles to see him.
9. Jun banks a favor
Jun examines Sunjo (whose bashful way of acting now that he’s freed himself of his bitterness and the curse is just too adorable :D) and proclaims that he’s well and truly cured. Sunjo thanks him and Jun smiling, asks him for a favor, for you know, curing him (hahahaha). Sunjo doesn’t get it though, considering that he’d already released the princess as per their bargain but Jun considers that a technicality seeing that the princess should be released anyway, after her innocence was proved (hahaha). Sunjo acts angry as he claims that Jun humiliated him and tells Jun to leave. Jun makes to walk away, mouthing off (hahahaha. Jun silently insulting Sunjo’s just too hilarious) when Sunjo stops him and asks Jun to tell him his request (awwww). Jun smiles as he tells Sunjo that he doesn’t know what the favor is at the moment, but he would like to hold onto Sunjo’s promise so he can cash in the favor at a latter date. Sunjo calls him a willy bastard and Jun smiles, whilst Sunjo tells him to stop smiling (Gah! I love this bromance already).
10. Jun will always be the better man
Outside the throne room, Jun comes to meet Seo Ri who’s focused on finding Hyun Seo. As they’re still talking about that Yo Gwang comes to break the news that Hong Joo’s escaped. Meanwhile, Hong Joo’s thanking Poong Yeon for the rescue whilst idiotic Poong Yeon tells her not to thank him as he intends to make sure she’s punished for her crimes after he’s turned Yeon Hee back to normal (how much idiocy are we expected to deal with with Poong Yeon). He then asks her what he should do and Hong Joo tells him to be ready to call forth his holy flames when she’s done all the preparations needed. The words has Poong Yeon asking if truly Yeon Hee will survive and Hong Joo tells him that he will trust her after it’s all well and done (but of course. You will have you one dead Yeon Hee and Hong Joo will laugh at your idiotic ass). Poong Yeon then asks her if she’d arranged his first meeting with Sol Gae. When Hong Joo agrees, Poong Yeon calls her fearsome, to which Hong Joo states that a person needs to see the bigger picture to carry out a revolution. She then warns Poong Yeon that Sol Gae should be the last person he should show his weakness to as revolutions must be carried out without feelings getting attached (and the dude isn’t thinking to ask her why she’s talking about revolutions when all he wants is to save Yeon Hee?). Seo Ri meanwhile, meets with Queen Shim who warns her to make sure that she always has guards around her because Hong Joo will be sure to come for Seo Ri. She also suggests that Seo Ri, being the princess, distance herself from Jun, a lowly commoner (Just when I was starting to like you Queen Shim). She suggests getting Jun a job, somewhere far away and when Seo Ri tells her that Jun has her heart, Queen Shim offers to give her some time. Some time has Seo Ri, walking with Jun that night. Jun notices the guard behind them and then brings up the fact that he will have to find work somewhere, meaning he won’t be around to see Seo Ri as much (awww Jun. You probably figured it out and didn’t want her to be the one to say it right?). He promises to continue to watch over Seo Ri, until she’s lit all the candles and is safe. With those words, he smiles and leaves and Seo Ri heads to her room where she’s kidnapped. Jun notices and runs after the kidnapper but loses him. The kidnapper, it turns out, is Poong Yeon who drops a bound and gagged Seo Ri in a barn. He takes off his mask and looks at her with an empty expression, then walks out of the barn and using his powers, sets the talisman and ultimately the barn on fire. He walks to meet a smiling Hong Joo whilst Jun stares stunned at the sight.
Character I wanted to bitchslap:
Because see this idiot? He just released the evil Shamaness who has nothing to lose and will wreck havoc on everyone and everything.
Headache inducing moment:
Because I could see so many things going wrong, and who knows what Hong Joo had put in that elixir. Maybe it would be something that would harm the king. Maybe it’s a way of her controlling the king. All I know is that I held my breath at this moment.
This episode’s a Zombie. Zombie Hyun Seo who’s controlled by Hong Joo but who occasionally breaks free of the hold to act on his own. Formerly Zombie Sunjo who’s broken free of Hong Joo’s hold and the newly appointed Zombie Poong Yeon who’s such a mess right now that I really wish someone should slap him till he snaps out of it.