Last episode: Wang So declared he will take the throne to Hae Soo, as his brother King Yo lays dying.
Episode 17 begins as Hae Soo returns to the Damiwon and gets news that Jung has a way out for her.
In the throne room, Woohee speaks with the king about trying to get her people from dying due to construction and that Wang So has sided with the people. As she threatens to quit if her people aren’t given proper care, Yo threatens back and reveals that Woohee is a princess. In addition he bites that she toys with her feelings for Baek Ah.
That night, as Yo sleeps he is woken up in a cold sweat to the voices of Wang Eun, Sun Duk, and Moo pleading with him to save them and not kill them. As Yo begins to lose it, an apparition of his father appears. Yo isn’t able to handle it and holds his chest as he passes out. As the figures step outside it’s revealed that the “ghosts’ are non other than Ji Mong, Baek Ah, and So.
The next day, Hae Soo rethinks about the other night when Wang So asked her opinion on him being king. While she doesn’t like it, she doesn’t want to be apart and knows in her heart it’s his fate to be king. She accepts that he’ll become king but makes him promise to never hurt his brothers like in the visions she had. As she comes back to the present she is called to give aid to the king and tells Chae Ryung to stay in the Damiwon. She shakes while pouring his medicinal tea to which he believes is poison. He puts the blame of the deaths and his ascent to the throne on her since she covered up Wang So’s scar thus helping So gain the throne. And so he had to do what he could to stop So from getting his seat. Outside, an army of men is heard as the Queen Mother rushes in telling him it’s So and that he’s formed a rebellion. Yoo Ssi grabs paper and tries to get Yo to abdicate the throne to Jung. Yo angrily shoves her away stating that all she wanted was the throne and didn’t care who was sitting there as long as it was one of her sons and calls for the guards to take her away.
Outside the palace the guards shut the doors. Meanwhile inside Yeon Hwa and her mother discuss plans. Her mother tells her that she has given up on Wook as long as Yeon Hwa listens to her.
Wang So, Baek Ah, and Park Soo Kyung wait outside ready to charge with an army. When the doors to the palace open, Yeon Hwa steps out.
Back in Yo’s room, he opens up to Hae Soo telling her that he didn’t want to be like his brother, Wang So, and be thrown away. As he holds his chest in pain, he continues to talk of how his mother built him up for years and yells at Soo that it’s all her fault. He grabs a piece of paper and writes up who the throne should be given to, and that it’s up to Hae Soo to chose. He tries to hand the paper to Hae Soo and states he was only trying to survive, before slumping over dying. Wang So walks in and sees the paper in Yo’s hand. He asks Soo if she saw it and when she shakes her head no, he rips it into shreds. Queen Yoo Ssi comes rushing in along with guards, Ji Mong, and Soo Kyung. Realizing the situation, Hae Soo falls to her knees declaring Wang So as the new king and when Yoo Ssi begins to question it, Wang So states that Yo abdicated to him before his death.
At the coronation, Wang So is named king much to the happiness of his brothers and Yeon Hwa. Wang So flashes back to outside the palace when Yeon Hwa approached him declaring he can get in without bloodshed. After the coronation, Hae Soo waits outside and watches as Wang So walks by. She promises to change history and make Wang So be remembered as a good king.
That night Wang Wook sits angrily and remembers the events of earlier when he approached his mother and sister about opening the gate to Wang So. They don’t hesitate to answer that it’s true, and his mother tells him that she no longer wishes for him to be king but rather keep their family in the royal line with a queen instead. As Wook remembers his mothers words, Yeon Hwa walks in and questions why he wasn’t at the coronation. Wook responds it was his seat and he didn’t want to watch someone else take it. Yeon Hwa begs him to help her become queen and promises to repay him for his sacrifices.
In the throne room, Park Soo Kyung tells Wang So that he must go back home. When So prods him as to why, Soo Kyung reveals that he can’t look at So without seeing the sword that killed his daughter’s husband. That night, Hae Soo goes to visit So in the throne room and he tells her that on the last will of the king, the space where the name would be to abdicate to was left empty. So he tells her he ripped it up because a document such of that would cause confusion, and he thought it best to take the crown as he’d already stormed the palace. Hae Soo sits next to him and reassures him that she’s there and will always be there, allowing So to calm himself.
A furious Yoo Ssi sits discussion with Jung about how Yo could ever give the throne to Wang So. She demands that Jung find out what was the last will of Yo before his death, including getting something out of Hae Soo.
That night, Soo, Wang So, and Baek Ah have a fun meal time. As So sleeps, Hae Soo approaches him covering him with a blanket Suddenly, he wakes up yelling her name and pulls her in. The next morning Hae Soo wakes up alone and the ladies in waiting approach her to clean her up. Hae Soo meets with Woohee discussing how she preferred to be a court lady so she wouldn’t have to wait all day and could do work. In the middle of their tea, Soo is instructed to visit the queen. Yoo Ssi and Jung demand answers as to what was Yo’s decision on who should be the next king. When the queen doesn’t get the answer she’s looking for, she pulls at Hae Soo demanding her who Yo wanted as king, So bursts in grabbing Hae Soo. When he tells her that he is the true king and calls her Queen Mother, Yoo Ssi lashes back. Wang So pulls Hae Soo to the throne room doors. Once there, he tells her that she doesn’t have to come when called, and she shouldn’t see people without his permission and with that he enters the throne room. Ji Mong further reveals that many people are questioning his position, and So demands that they all be silenced.
In the palace walls, one of the betrayers threatens Woohee, revealing that she spied on Baek Ah and Wang So. She subsequently kills him before he can say a word. Later that day, Woohee waits on a bridge and Baek Ah jumps out and surprises her. He reveals that he has plans to change her family so that he can marry her without issue.
In the palace, Hae Soo is given a new, bigger room, and Chae Ryung comes for a visit. She tells Hae Soo that she has to leave, but asks Hae Soo to approach the king to get her to stay. Outside the room she meets with Wang Won and promises her that she’ll get everything she wanted if she helps him out.
That night, Hae Soo runs into Wook who questions why she stuck with Wang So. Hae Soo tells him it’s because So never hid his greed and told her everything. Whereas, Wook kept secrets and didn’t confess his feelings. When he asks why she said that Wang So would become king, she explains it’s fate and that the stars told everyone he would. At his house, Wook remembers his good times with Hae Soo and looks at the bracelet he gave her to cover her scar. He smashes the bracelet and Yeon Hwa comes in. As she comes in, Wang Wook tells her that he will help her become queen.
Wang So and Hae Soo sit in his room as he writes her the poem over and over. As they talk, Hae Soo asks to return to the Damiwon, as well as about Chae Ryung. He agrees to let Chae Ryung stay and that Hae Soo won’t be worried in the future when they get married and have children. He tells her that she needs to be in peak condition to bear them. When she asks about marriage, Wang So attempts a proposal but she denies his proposal saying she wants a true one.
The next day Hae Soo is checked by a doctor but is told that she has a heart palpation and may not live very long. After the news she goes to pray for a long life with Wang So. As she prays, Jung approaches and she tries to smooth over their relationship but he lashes out at her saying she chose So and that she won’t be queen, just another women to Wang So. He talks to her about her wishes to travel and offers up a way to get out of the palace.
In the throne room, Wook approaches giving So with a list of demands to take away some of So’s power. Mirroring it, Yeon Hwa sits and talks with a reluctant Hae Soo. As they talk, Yeon Hwa tells her that she can stay in the palace with Wang So but she will be the queen not Hae Soo. After So denies Wook’s demands, Wook suggests a marriage to Yeon Hwa so that So will have the backing of their families and gain power. As the episode ends, So brushes off the suggestion saying he has enough power and that he has promised to marry Hae Soo. Wook shoves this back in his face telling him that Soo can’t be queen because of her scar.
Episode 18 returns to Hae Soo’s room where she and Yeon Hwa discuss Yeon Hwa becoming queen. Yeon Hwa brings up Hae Soo’s scar telling her she can’t ever be queen. In the throne room, after Wook suggests that she can’t be queen due to the scar, Wang So pushes back stating how he himself has a scar and is able to sit on the throne.
The next day, So is given more pressure to marry Yeon Hwa because he needs power. Wook and Yeon Hwa’s mother also urges him to marry Yeon Hwa. She points out how she cast away her son and gives So a book written in Korean stating that Hae Soo is suspicious.
In the hall, Hae Soo runs into Chae Ryung and gives her the good news that she’s allowed to stay in the palace. Chae Ryung talks to her about how Yeon Hwa is preparing to be queen and that Hae Soo belongs in that spot. Ji Mong interrupts them and bring Hae Soo up to the observatory pointing out how the princes use to get along and all the memories in there. He urges Hae Soo to not marry Wang So and to give up, to which she tells him she can’t.
That night, Hae Soo sneaks into the throne room and surprises Wang So with a couple of masks so they can go outside the palace without being noticed. In a couple of cute scenes they remember how they met and play with each other. They end up at Hae Soo’s prayer towers where Wang So proposes. Reluctantly Hae Soo declines and urges him to marry Yeon Hwa to save his seat on the throne.
The next day Wang So and Yeon Hwa get married.
Outside at the prayer towers, Hae Soo prayers and Jung shows up stating how she should run away with him and all she has to do is ask.
That night, Wang So and Yeon Hwa are together but he doesn’t give her consummation. Instead, as Yeon Hwa begins to tell what a bad idea it would’ve been for Hae Soo to be queen, Wang So cuts her off telling her she should focus on her queen duties and leave him alone.
At the prayer towers, Hae Soo continues to pray and Chae Ryung shows up. They discuss the late Lady Hae and Chae Ryung says a prayer for her family. Hae Soo tells Lady Hae that she is doing alright and Chae Ryung holds her hands as Wang So looks on at them.
The next day, Wang So initiates a punishment for Jung stating he has been treasonous and orders that Jung return to his home. Yoo Ssi upon hearing this faints, and is taken to bed. Yeon Hwa is the first to visit her and Yoo Ssi begs for Jung. Wang So comes in as well and demands that only he should attend his mother. Jung comes rushing up the palace demanding to see his mother before she dies but is denied.
That night, Hae Soo urges Wang So to let Jung see his mother. However, Wang So angrily tells her she shouldn’t have sent a message to Jung. So threatens that if Jung should enter the palace, even if it’s by Hae Soo, he won’t be as forgiving.
As Jung waits for days outside the palace to get in to see his mother, Wang So continues to attempt to take care of her despite her refusal to corporate. He demands that she should see who is by her side in her time of need and despite that she never truly cared about him, he will create stories and build a temple for her. As the queen dies, he states it’s his revenge for her throwing her away and she reaches up to touch his scar.
Hae Soo runs out of the palace and informs Jung of his mother’s death. He is allowed inside and despite the situation, So remains merciless and tells him his punishment will soon be reinstated.
Later that evening, Wang So yells at Hae Soo demanding why she took Jung’s side. When she tries to tell him he deserved to be with his mother, he yells back saying he’s always been cast away and for the first time in his life he got all of her attention.
In the throne room the next day, Wang So demands to know who poisoned Moo with Wang Won. So knows that it was Chae Ryung but also knows she didn’t act alone, and Won places the blame on Wook.
Inside the Damiwon, Hae Soo notices a bad presence among the ladies and Woohee takes her outside. When she questions the ladies, they say that the king forced them to watch. As Hae Soo steps closer, Ji Mong tells her that it’s Chae Ryung and that she betrayed the crown. Hae Soo rushes forward as Chae Ryung’s bloodied and beaten body is unfurled. Hae Soo upon seeing this faints. Inside her room she dreams of the good memories she had with Chae Ryung. When she wakes up So is by her side and is informed of her heart condition. When she pushes So away, he explains that she was a spy the entire time and betrayed her as well as worked Wook and Wang Won to murder the previous king Moo.
In the throne room, Wang So announces to Baek Ah that he will not let Wook get away with his betrayal, especially after making So look like a monster to Hae Soo.
Meanwhile, Hae Soo finds the cloth that Chae Ryung gave her and discovers a note. Realizing that Chae Ryung lied about not being able to read and write. In the note, Chae Ryung explains that she betrayed Hae Soo out of love for Wang Won whom she’d been infatuated with since she was young and was his servant before Wook.
Back in Wang So’s room, he walks in thinking that Hae Soo has forgiven him but upon taking off the mask it’s Yeon Hwa who demands they have an heir. Wang So offers that if she betrays her family and brother then he will grant her an heir.
At the bath house, a sad Hae Soo remembers holding the pin that Wang So gave her. While she is reminiscing, Baek Ah approaches. Baek Ah reveals that So knew of Chae Ryung’s betrayal and tried to get her to leave the palace. But when she stuck by Hae Soo, he had no choice but to punish her. She asks Baek Ah to talk to Jung and hand him the pin along with a message that she wants to escape with him.
I have to say it’s been torture to watch these last two episodes, I was seriously hoping that Hae Soo would marry Wang So and live happily ever after, but things seem to be turning. With only two episodes left until the end, I really don’t know how there can be more of a story. But somehow things, just aren’t looking up for the couple. I really dislike that Hae Soo can’t look past her friendship with Chae Ryung and realize that So tried his best to avoid punishing her. But it seems that Hae Soo is stuck in the idea that Wang So is the bad guy.
It’s a reluctant 9/10. As much as I hated these last two episodes, it wasn’t for lack of substance or bad acting so I can’t say they were bad episodes.
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Edited by: Gigi Estilo
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