Going against her promise, Yoon Seon-a (Kim Ji-won) makes an unlikely decision to not meet with Park Jae-won (Ji Chang-wook) upon her return to Seoul. On top of that, she refrains from reaching out to him as her way of putting an end to their “marriage.”
With that, our poor leading man has fallen into the category of lovers who turned into exes through ghosting or the practice of ending a personal relationship with someone by suddenly withdrawing from all forms of communication with them and providing no explanation whatsoever. Usually, in these types of breakups, the ghosted person bears the burden of finding out what they did wrong, just like what Jae-won says at the closing scene in episode 4, all while bravely figuring out what to do with the things that they once bought or shared with their exes. In episode 5, the series tries to shed light on the question, “What do you do with the memory box after breaking up?”
The gift loaner and the sentimentalist
To introduce the different ways of how ex-couples deal with their common possessions after a breakup, a flashback of Kang Geon (Ryu Kyung-soo) and Oh Sun-young’s (Han Ji-eun) separation three years ago takes over the screen. Sun-young begins the fight by demanding that Kyung-soo take off the coat that she bought for him during her trip to the US. Kang Geon tries to talk her out of it by saying that parting ways does not have anything to do with material things. She ignores him and ends up getting the coat back plus the shirt, shoes, and socks that Kang Geon was wearing. She practically stripped him of his clothes in the midst of a cold winter night. Who would have thought that such an embarrassing situation would lead him to Oh Dong-sik (played by SHINee’s Minho) and pave way for a new friendship to form? Here, Sun-young is what we call a “gift loaner,” a person who tends to take back all the things that they gifted their exes, while Kang Geon is a “sentimentalist,” one who is not keen on returning or disposing gifts from their past lovers as they find it beautiful that those things have captured irreplaceable memories with them, regardless if they are no longer together.
The back-to-sender courier and the dumper
Moving on to the next types, the scene shifts to one of Choi Kyung-joon (Kim Min-seok) and Suh Rin-yi’s (So Joo-yeon) near-breakup moments. Kyung-joon is shown patiently waiting outside Rin-yi’s workplace with a box full of their mementos. When she finally goes out, he hurriedly blocks her way and asks her to take the things back. She snaps at him and tells him to just throw them away, like how a real cold-blooded “dumper” would. It turns out, Kyung-joon was only returning the things as an excuse to talk to Rin-yi and tell her that he wants them to get back together. He even comes up with the idea of bringing another box to her house and spending the night there, making Rin-yi laugh at his absurdity. As clear as day, Kyung-joon has cleverly used the “back-to-sender-courier” card to his advantage and has successfully saved the relationship.
Of course, Jae-won and Seon-a also made their own choices on what to do with the things that previously tied them together. Because he likes Seon-a very much, Jae-won goes out of his way to surprise her with a set of matching surfboards that he had made from scratch. Looking at the effort that he put into them, it’s obvious that he is a generous and thoughtful giver. The hardest challenge for these types of people could probably be that they can’t keep themselves from wondering about where the things they gifted their exes have ended up post-breakup—do they still have them or wear them? Were they thrown away? Kept in a box? Sold off? Pretty much like how Jae-won couldn’t help but ask Seon-a about what she did to her wedding ring as well as to his three film cameras that he unknowingly left in her care when he flew out to Seoul.
Meanwhile, Seon-a, whose real name is Lee Eun-oh, claims that she already got rid of the wedding ring. As for the cameras, she leaves a final message to Jae-won on the Saturday night that they were supposed to meet at Cheonggyecheon’s third stepping stone in Seoul, saying, “I had a nice time with you. We shouldn’t meet again. I’ll keep the cameras. No, I stole them from you. That was my plan from the start. I’m sorry.” Eun-oh is not a total “ghoster” after all, but she still didn’t give Jae-won an acceptable reason for her sudden decision. Instead, she only confessed to being a “thief,” a person who takes their ex’s things and holds on to them. What she fails to realize, however, is that Jae-won is truly and badly hurt because all the while he thought, Seon-a was aiming to steal his heart.