There are a few shows that manage to keep things interesting throughout, and this is one of them. Every episode, while managing a solid dose of humor and romance, also administers thrills and plot twists to spice things up. And this is a super hot level of spicy! With Queen So-yong (Shin Hye-sun) pregnant and King Cheoljong (Kim Jung-hyun) missing, this episode raises the stakes right before finale week.
With Cheoljong gone, Sunwon assumes power
As a confused So-yong struggles to make sense of Cheoljong’s abrupt departure, the latter ends up in a cliff-side battle with Byeong-in (Na In-woo). To avoid capture, Cheoljong jumps over the cliff and into a river. In Cheoljong’s absence, Grand Queen Dowager Sunwon (Bae Jong-ok) resumes her regency and reinstates all the members of the Kim clan who were removed or exiled by Cheoljong.
So-yong cannot stop missing Cheoljong
She is reminded of him everywhere she goes, from the palace lake to her chambers. Byeong-in pays her a visit with a cryptic offer about protecting her and her child, which So-yong finds strange, along with the wound on Byeong-in’s shoulder that was left by the King’s sword. So-yong is in denial and tries distracting herself with sewing, friends, and games, but it takes just one prick of the needle for her to break down in sobs, wishing for Cheoljong’s return.
The King has passed away
Court Lady Choi (Cha Chung-hwa) breaks the news of the King’s death to So-yong, leading her to blame herself. Meanwhile, Byeong-in’s men are unable to find Cheoljong’s corpse even as the Head Eunuch performs a ritual to call the dead King’s soul back. Despite the lack of confirmation about the death, Byeong-in and Sunwon conspire to install a new King after the five days of mourning have passed and seal the palace gates to prevent any mishaps.
So-yong suspects foul play
After a desperate Yeongpyeong (Yoo Min-kyu) tries to take So-yong hostage, blaming her for the King’s death, So-yong starts to suspect that everything may not be as it seems. She sneaks into the King’s funeral chamber to steal a look at his body and comes away with conclusive evidence. She shares her suspicions with Court Lady Choi and Hong Yeon (Chae Seo-eun) and also summons Hwa-jin (Seol In-ah) back to the palace to tell her the news.
Byeong-in and So-yong clash
As Grand Queen Dowager Sunwon announces the coronation of a new King, So-yong slips out of the palace on a mission. Byeong-in tries to stop her, but she fires back by telling him that he never loved So-yong and shooting him in the leg. When she crosses the palace walls, she’s greeted by none other than the two women she had tried to fool—Court Lady Choi and Hong Yeon. The three women set off on a mission to save their King. Cheoljong, meanwhile, wakes up in the tent of a herb picker who doesn’t seem entirely trustworthy.
Byeong-in turns on So-yong
Now this is a development I did not see coming. Having been pushed to the brink of his patience, Byeong-in takes on the mission of capturing both So-yong and Cheoljong. In her earlier confrontation with him, So-yong had given him enough hints to believe that she’s not the real So-yong. leading him to chase after So-yong with a ferocity that I did not see coming. This episode ends on a cliffhanger, quite literally—with Byeong-in holding So-yong by her throat as she dangles over the same cliff Cheoljong jumped from. AHHHHH. The next episode is going to be wild!