Episode 16: K = Kim Yoon Shik, L = Lee Sun Joon, M = Moon Jae Shin, G = Goo Yong Ha, HIS = Ha In Soo (school president), IBC = Ha In Soo’s Yes-man/lackey
L: (yelling at the top of his lungs, searches frantically for K) Kim Yoon Shik! Kim Yoon Shik! (Then as if sensing her presence, he stops and sees her. Rushing towards her, he embraces a very surprised K, who stands rigidly in shock. Reluctantly, L disengages from the embrace.) It’s no use. No matter how hard I try, I can’t help but search for you like this. And so, now it’s your turn; run away from me, Kim Yoon Shik. (He stoically walks away.)
K: Wait! My response…you should listen to it before you leave. (L slowly turns back to face her.)
Rushing towards him, K loses her footing and plunges into the stream. Wasting not a moment, L dives into the stream (isn’t it shallow for a head-long dive?) and emerges with an unconscious K in his arms. He shifts her wet form in his arms more securely and trudges out of the stream, laying K gently on one of the big boulders.
L: Kim Yoon Shik! Kim Yoon Shik! Wake up! Kim Yoon Shik! Kim Yoon Shik! (At a loss for what to do, L starts to unbutton K’s top but is taken aback when he glimpses what looks like the top of a woman’s torso underneath the shirt of his roommate. (the harp music is hilarious!) In disbelief, he falls back upon the boulder.
IBC and his friend cower in fear as M looms above them.
M: What were you doing just now, behind K? (loose translation)
IBC: We…we were just going to see if K wanted to play in the water with us–
Friend: (finishing the sentence) friendly-like.
M: (grabbing the fronts of their robes) That water play…(pauses for dramatic, menacing effect) I suggest you play with me. Friendly-like. (M pats IBC’s right cheek and friend’s left cheek with his hands and concludes by turning the pats into pinches. IBC and friend huddle against each other in fearful anticipation of what M has in store for them.)
Back at the boulder, K finally regains consciousness and quickly sits up and covers herself, especially since she notices L looking down at her disheveled state.
L: Kim Yoon Shik…You…(K attempts to cover herself even more securely despite the fact that her back is facing L and he can’t see anything.) You are a woman? (K is at a loss for words…her worst fear is realized.)
From the banks of the stream, some of the other scholars sing loudly in their drunken state. Even more frantic now, K struggles to right her clothing before the other scholars see her. L, perceiving the danger, especially when one of the scholars asks his friends what they think about spending their time right there on the bank, hurriedly pulls K off the boulder and hides them below. With his arms cushioning K from the hard boulder, L stays alert and tense as the scholars stop right above their hiding place, discussing among themselves whether to stay here or continue onward. Despite the dangerous situation, K becomes all too aware of L’s proximity and pulls slightly away from his arms to calm her racing heart. L reaches over to pull her back to the safety of his arms but stops himself, especially since the scholars continue on their way. Both K and L breathe a sigh of relief.
IBC and friend struggle in the stream, their red robes billowing in the water currents, as M continues to submerge them in the water with a stick.
M: The water play that you enjoy so much, we’ll play to our hearts’ content right here.
IBC: (sputtering) I’ve played all I want.
Friend: Can’t we come out now? (so pitifully cute how he whimpers like a kid asking for permission LOL)
In response, M dunks them under once again from his position on the boulder.
M: Until I return, you had better not step even one foot out of this stream. Otherwise, I’ll use my entire body to play with you then.
IBC and friend dunk themselves back under the waters and again a second time when they notice that M has turned back to watch them. (LOL)
Back on the boulder, K, properly attired once more, announces that “I should get back now.” As she walks by, L detains her by placing his hand on her shoulder.
L: You’re asking me to let you simply return like this? I cannot let you leave. (!!!)
M strides by to the edge of the stream with his long stick resting casually against his shoulder. “Hey! Kim Yoon Shik! Let’s go down now.” He reaches the location where he last saw her and seems puzzled that she is nowhere in sight. “Hey, Kim Yoon Shik! (Starts to look for her) Where is this guy? Kim Yoon Shik!”
He suddenly drops his stick and starts to frantically search for her along the stream. Reaching their base camp, he grabs the shoulder of one of the scholars and asks, “Kim Yoon Shik hasn’t come here?” Asking the Soron leader, he again asks if he hasn’t seen KYS to which the guy says he doesn’t know. In frustration, M asks nobody in particular, “Where on earth has that guy gone?!” G suddenly appears and taps M on his collar bone with his fan (I love how the fan is G’s affectation at being a “dandy” LOL!)
G: Don’t worry yourself too much. That guy is doing fine.
M: You’re certain? Where is he?
G: (Korean equivalent of a tsk tsk) One by one…you need to ask each question calmly, my friend. I didn’t see it directly with my own eyes, but I’m certain. Now, K’s safely where his roommate is residing.
G: K’s with LSJ. Daemul is with L. If you’re that worried, you should go there, too. Confirm with your own two eyes…(I love how G uses his fan with M)…that K’s safe and sound.
M: (slapping the fan away from his chin) It’s all right. As long as K’s safe, I don’t need to go.
M walks away as G smiles to himself.
In L’s room, K finishes changing her clothes.
K: I’ve finished changing.
L: (enters the room and closes the door behind him) I don’t know from where or how I should speak. You must be tired, so it’s best to get some rest.
K: In this room, you mean?
L: I’ll sleep outside, so you don’t need to worry.
Soondol: (opens the door and prevents L from exiting) Where do you think you’re going? Pretty scholar, by whatever means possible, you need to convince my young master and take him back with you to SKK. He’ll get ruined just staying in this room all by himself. Even though I die, I refuse to continue to see my young master’s pathetic state any longer.
K: Have you been sick?
Soondol: Ugh! He’s been lovesick! He won’t eat! He won’t read! He won’t sleep!
L: (clearing his voice, L issues a caution to Soondol…much good it does LOL) Soondol….
S: (oblivious to what he’s disclosing and L’s caution) I don’t know if he’s simply lost his mind because he’s missing the person so much. (turns away disgustedly)
In acute embarrassment at being found out, L swiftly looks back at K, who in turns looks away in embarrassment.
L: Soondol…you…stop it this instance.
Soondol’s response is to quickly close the door and lock it securely from the outside. L, realizing a moment too late what Soondol plans, grabs at the door and tries to open it.
S: Pretty Scholar, make sure you convince my young master, ok?
L: (whispers quietly) Here…there’s only one blanket. (K overhears, though, and realizes L’s concern)
S: Geez! My young master is finicky. Where on earth at this time would I get another blanket?! It’s not like you guys need to keep your distance from each other.
Soondol walks away leaving L and K locked inside the room. (AWKWARD! LOL)
Back at the base compound, the scholars continue their merriment. G teases M, who’s pretending to sleep.
G: What’s the point of putting on a front if only your shell is here. Your inside (soul) is down there by Daemul, no? See? Dang! Dang! (pretends to knock on M’s “empty shell” like a bell) There’s this hollow sound.
M: (grabs G’s hand) If you continue to joke like this, it can become a habit and your wrist may break.
G: (gently jerks his hand away and cajoles) You like her…Daemul.
M: (stops breathing momentarily) Then what about you? Don’t you as well?
G: True. How can anyone not like that little cute guy?
M: I’m going to get some sleep. (Gets up to leave from his resting place)
G: Don’t waste all your energy trying to act cool. Pretending not to want…pretending not to be jealous…and most importantly, pretending not to be shaken by small events (K spending the night with L alone) like this…pretending to be strong. If I were you, I wouldn’t waste my energy pretending but instead devote all my strength into making her mine. Because as of now, you still have the advantage over L. (winks and then leans over to whisper) That guy, L, won’t be able to imagine in a million years Daemul’s secret. (au contraire, mon ami!)
M goes to a secluded place and lies down in thought.
Seated in L’s room, K awkwardly plays with the blanket.
K: The light must be turned off in order for us to sleep.
L: I haven’t finished reading what I need to read by today. Just ignore me and go to sleep.
K lies down to sleep but quickly sits back up. (Definitely awkward to sleep with a guy wide awake by one’s side) I can’t sleep either. I might as well read, too. (K goes over to look for a book.)
L: (unable to look at her) Back there at the creek…before you fell into the water…(K finds the red book and sees a picture of a man and woman in a compromising pose) Didn’t you say that you had something important to tell me? (Doesn’t realize K’s looking at him in disgust) I mean, I’m only asking because I thought it was something important. Wouldn’t it be better to speak now before you forget? (LOL…he’s totally nervous and oblivious to her stare…chuckles)
K: Scholar Lee Sun Joon (love the strong disgust in the voice). You seem to enjoy these kinds of books.
L: (finally looking at her…expression turns to shock and embarrassment) That book…G gave it to me…why is that here? (He brought the book all the way up to the mountains?! LOL)
K: I thought you were reading a really important book. You read it every day so diligently without fail. (falls on the blankets in her attempt to keep the book from L)
L: That book…who’s the reason why I’m even reading that book? (I love the double entendre of his comment!)
Startled by how much he’s revealed, L gets off of K and sits.
K: I told you we should turn off the lights and sleep.
With the lights turned off now, K gets up to cover L with the blanket.
L: I’m all right. (sits up) I have the body of a man, and you have the body of a woman. And you fell into the water…
K: (coyly) Who was the man who got sick after only getting a little bit wet that time on the island? I’m all right. (gets up and rolls herself like a kimbap/sushi roll with her mattress blanket.) I can sleep rolled up like this. (This is such an adorable scene!)
L: (laughing together with K) When was it that you started hiding the fact that you were a girl and dressed as a man? If it’s too difficult, you don’t have to answer.
K: I once told you that I had a sick brother, didn’t I? Because I didn’t have any money for the medicine, I paid the doctor with my writing; he got me work at the bookseller’s as a writer/scribe. That was about…two years after my father passed away…I was about 12 years old.
L: Did you borrow your brother’s name then?
K: Yes, that’s how things turned out.
L: Then your real name is? (It’s so sweet how he wants to know her real name.)
K: Kim Yoon Hee. Kim Yoon Hee is my name.
L: Kim Yoon Hee (as though he’s trying to weigh and memorize her name)
At the Ha’s residence, HIS tells Hyo-eun that he knows L better than she does. “There’s something between the two of you. Speak. I can only help you if you tell me the truth.” Hyo-eun tells her brother that she knows he’s not thrilled with L so will he just pretend as though he doesn’t know anything. She knows that because L is a upright, well-mannered man, he won’t ever break the engagement as long as she doesn’t break it. She’s going to wait and try to be the perfect person for him. HIS is furious that L doesn’t want his sister. Hyo-eun tries to tell him it’s not L’s fault but that it’s because she’s lacking, but HIS storms out and looks vengeful.
In the morning, K looks at L in disbelief.
K: What did you just say? Did you just tell me to withdraw from SKK?
L: Isn’t that an obvious course of action?
K: How is it obvious?
L: You’re breaking the law.
K: Is it because men and women are not equal and that this is against the law?
L: You know that this is a situation that can never be.
K: Have you forgotten who made me forget the impossible and dream of a miracle for myself?
L: That was…
K: Is it because I am a woman? The poor…namins (the people she belongs to)…all of them can dream of a miracle, but to a girl, are you telling me that it is not permissible? Like my other circumstances in life, being a girl is something that I couldn’t choose. I am not afraid of the law nor its punishment.
She walks out. L stops her on the road and asks her if she can’t understand what he’s worried about. (Interesting how the two are wearing matching colors, huh? Talk about trying to get them to looks like a couple already. LOL)
L: You could get hurt? You could even lose your life?
K: I don’t want to live life in fear of something that hasn’t even happened yet. Even if I were to leave SKK, I would still have to dress like this and acquire work as a writer/scribe. Or in order to help out my impoverished family, I would have to, regardless of the person, marry someone. (LOL. Love L’s subtle reaction to this news.) So for me, the type of tomorrow you speak of that I should want to protect with all my might and safety doesn’t exist. I’m…I just want to enjoy this moment, with all my heart and with all my strength because these times will never be allowed to me again. (L didn’t consider these options, did he? Tsk tsk. K is quite practical here.)
When K returns, the scholars ask where K’s been. They start speculating that K was out last night with a woman in his arms. K scoffs at the notion. When M and G enter the room, K contritely starts to apologize about not returning last night.
K: Sahyung! Last night…things just turned out that way. (It’s like she’s apologizing to her older brother…poor M)
M turns and leaves, stopping only when K calls after him.
M: You…why do you only think of yourself? Act with some thought for others who might be worried about you. (He leaves.)
G: Were you able to meet LSJ?
K: How did you know?
G: (in a tone to indicate that she should know better by now…LOL) I’m Goo Yong Ha.
Back in L’s room, he reflects on his last conversation with K and how she said that she only has two options for herself (either keep cross-dressing to find work or marry someone to save her family). More than anything else, she tells him that she just wants to be happy and enjoy the moment. Walking back to SKK with G and M, K likewise thinks back on L’s concern for her. As M tries to take the package she’s holding, the scholars erupt into chants of “Daemul!” because Chosun has arrived at the marketplace with her fellow courtesans in the hopes of meeting Daemul. Chosun explains that she came out to see K because she has something to tell K. She adds that since there was little chance of K seeking her out, she did the seeking instead. The other scholars react outrageously in typical male fashion at Chosun’s obvious pursuit of K. (LOL. G gives M such an interesting look…chuckles, ah the irony). K tells Chosun that K’s glad she’s come, for she was planning on going to see Chosun today as well. Chosun lowers her head to hide a smile of pleasure while the other scholars howl and announce that they will leave the two of them alone now. As M and G pass the couple, however, M stops momentarily due to the scent of Chosun’s distinctive perfume. (Love the dramatic music!) As K and Chosun leave, G expresses his shock and disbelief; Chosun, known for her coolness, has fallen quite in love with K. M, due to his lack of experience with women and courtesans, asks G if all courtesans wear this perfume. G says of course not and then proceeds to sniff the air. He elaborates that this is a perfume only worn by Chosun because she’s the only woman/beauty who can handle such a strong scent. Other courtesans can’t wear the potent perfume.
At Chosun’s place, the other courtesans tell K that K really doesn’t know women very well. One of them voices her puzzlement over why Chosun is so taken with K. There doesn’t seem to be anything special about K to warrant taking Chosun’s name off the list of available courtesans at work. At this news, K is stunned, but before she can say anything else, Chosun enters the room with some food and tells the younger courtesans to leave and stop uttering such foolishness. K asks Chosun if this is true. Chosun responds by asking if K will receive a woman like her.
Meanwhile, M is waiting for K outside Chosun’s place and recalls his various encounters with her (smelling her perfume, fighting the masked fake HBS) while G’s voice is heard: “Surely not. This is a scent used exclusively by Chosun.”
Seated across from K, Chosun explains that she doesn’t expect to become the wife of K, given her situation in life. Since she was a child until now, she’s lived the life of a courtesan. However, K was the first one to ever see her as a woman who deserved the common courtesies given to respectable women (loose translation) rather than as a simple courtesan whose job was to entertain men. If she’s by K’s side, regardless of whether she becomes K’s lover or mistress, she feels that she might be able to live a life in which she respects and cherishes herself as a woman. “Will you give me permission to live, waiting for the day when you can return my feelings?” (WOW, the woman is so incredibly articulate!) K, understanding the gravity of the situation as well as the honor, clearly states that she cannot allow Chosun to do so. K then continues that she (K) is unworthy to be the recipient of such emotions from such a beautiful and gentle woman like Chosun. K asks Chosun to not bother with K anymore. She (K) is unworthy of Chosun’s affections. K gets up to leave, and Chosun follows suit, gently chiding K, “How can I let you go (forget about you) when you reject me with such kind words?” K apologizes twice, once in the familiar form and then switches over to the more honorific form of apology.
As K walks out, she’s met by M.
M: Visiting a courtesan’s house on your first day back…what do you want to become when you get older? (K merely smiles) Chosun…I think it may be wise to put some distance between you and her.
K: She’s a good person…too valuable for someone like me.
M: (irritated) Will you just listen when I tell you things?! It’s unbecoming of a little runt like you going in and out of a courtesan’s house.
K: Sahyung, are you still angry with me? Don’t worry so much. I’m Daemul…Daemul. (LOL love the way she talks with M)
M: So? It’s because it’s you that I worry.
Grabbing her bag from her, he walks away with K trailing to catch up to him. (Love the way her backpack swings)
The other scholars return to SKK and discover a posting about an upcoming exam/quiz tournament given by the king. The prize is tangerines (extremely rare in Korea during those days due to Korea’s cold weather). The old scholar explains to the salivating younger scholars that the tangerines are sweet and tangy and that they shouldn’t say anything unless they’ve actually tasted such deliciousness.
His hands full supporting a basket laden with ripe tangerines, the headmaster walks with the king as the king explains that because there was a good harvest this year, he’s brought plenty of tangerines to give to the scholars. The headmaster comments that SKK scholars are probably the only commoners who get to taste such a delight. Even though he personally would never go back to his days as a student, he sometimes thinks that returning to the life of a scholar might be worthwhile if he gets to eat some tangerines. The King chuckles and then notes that L’s father is approaching. As they exchange greetings and discuss that the time of the exam/quiz is already here, the king comments that L’s father can look forward to the event and anticipate good results this year (in reference to L). The headmaster chimes in to say that if L, with all his brilliance does not take first place, the sun will have risen on the west instead of the east. ByungPan interjects and says that L is studying up in the mountains. There is an awkward silence, which is broken by the headmaster who asks, “You didn’t know? L has been reinstated at SKK as of today.” L’s father clears his throat and tells the king that he sent L back to school, much to ByungPan’s surprise (ha!). L’s father continues that despite his son’s stubborn about his studies, he felt that SKK was the better place for L to further his studies. (I love how the king can see beneath the surface but doesn’t indicate so in words…a man of many layers.)
K reads the posting about the quiz tournament as she walks into the library. Searching for a book, she taps the shoulder of a scholar.
K: Excuse me.
L: Is this the book you’re looking for?
K: (looking as though she’s seen a ghost) You’ve returned? To SKK?
L: If you’re preparing for the quiz tournament, there’s no need. (arrogant yet true implication that he’ll place first…ah, what a smartie! LOL) You were right, Kim Yoon…(doesn’t finish because he doesn’t want to call her by Kim Yoon Shik anymore!) Anyhow, I was the person who made you a scholar at SKK. I’ll take responsibility. Before anyone finds out about this situation, I will help you leave SKK quietly. I will be doing the work, so there won’t be any mistakes. (LOL such arrogance)
K: Are you telling me that you returned solely to kick me out of SKK?
L: Then did you see me as a half-wit who would be content to let the girl he’s interested in remain at SKK, a school that is crawling with men? Me? (Love the waltzy music!)
K: (blocks him from walking away from her) With what authority/right?
L: I hope that you don’t get hurt. (can’t comprehend the other sentence he says). What other right do I need?
K: You can help me…to finish successfully and safely. Will you be satisfied if I can show you how well suited I am for SKK?
L: That…how do you plan on showing me this?
K: (looks over at the quiz notice) Uh…that…what about the quiz tournament? I’ll place first in the tournament.
L: first in the tournament, huh? Do you realize that everyone will be taking the exam.
K: Uh…(she didn’t realize LOL)
L: (tries to intimidate her with the breath and depth of that exam…how much she’s going to have to know and study for that exam) Do you know that it’s an exam that requires complete memorization?
K: (trying to stay positive) It’s not like everyone else isn’t taking the exam. I’ll try it, too!
L: There’s one more thing.
K: What is it this time?
L: More than anything else, you will have to win me.
K: (laughs at his arrogant statement.) I was expecting something intimidating (loose translation of the Korean)
L: Since my childhood days, I have never once lost first place.
K: So, when I win, you promise to say no more on this subject.
L: Agreed. Let’s try this then.
L walks through SKK and overhears scholars discussing his return. He ignores them and continues on his way while the scholar in sunglasses quotes a wise proverb about how one rejoices when a friend returns from a far distance. However, the scholar quickly panics and exclaims that he is NOT joyful because L is sure to place first, thereby making it impossible for him to win.
L walks up to G and M, who jabs G in the stomach for playing with his hair. L bows to his seniors.
G: You’ve come. I guess K is really an antidote/medicine, huh?
(Awkward silence between L and M)
M: Hey, Noron. I told you not to confuse people. Don’t go back and forth. It’s disorienting to me.
G: That’s the first time in 10 years, that friend…What a great welcome greeting! (at least for M)
(I ADORED THIS UPCOMING SCENE!!! LOL)
M and L are in their room preparing to sleep. (L astutely realizes that time is of the essence and decides to act quickly.)
L: Then, I’m going to sleep first, Sahyung (senior).
M looks at him blankly, wondering why L would announce his sleeping plans. L painstakingly positions his pillow right in the middle of the blankets (LOL the full-body view of this is hilarious!)
M: (In disbelief) Hey Noron. (L turns to his side and closes his eyes) That’s my place. (LOL..M utters this with clenched teeth)
L: Your place, my place. There’s no such thing. You were the one who said wherever one lies down is that person’s place.
M: (gives L a vicious kick in the back and jars L “awake”) Move back to your place.
In response, L snuggles even more securely into his spot. Grabbing his pillow (Korean pillows can be hard), M throws it down right next to L’s head, not caring that the pillow hit L’s head. Pushing L’s butt with his, M lays down for the night, arms crossed (what a battle of wills LOL) The squirming and pushing continue for a time until M gets tired of the situation and sits up in exasperation.
M: You…what’s wrong with you tonight?
L: (sits up as well) That’s what I’d like to ask. Why are you acting like this, Sahyung?
Their eyes lock in a silent battle of wills and only break when K walks into the room from her washing. (LOL love the music)
K: What are you two doing?
M: (ignoring the question and pats the spot next to him) You should sleep, too.
L: No! Kim Yoon Shik’s place is here. (L slams his hand down next to his side. At this, M is a bit stunned by L’s unusual behavior and glares at L…the battle of wills recommence. However, L soon remembers that K is in the room with them and averts his gaze.) KYS has wild sleeping habits, so it’s best to place K here by the wall…
M: That’s enough! Just sleep the way we’ve been sleeping! (LOL the clenched teeth again!)
L: No, sahyung.
K: (interrupting before the tension escalates) Wait. My sleeping place, I’ll decide.
Both men look at her expectantly. L motions (again and again LOL) with his eyes that she should pick his side. When she remains silent, undecided on what to do, he becomes uncertain of her feelings for him and simply waits. (LOL the silent conversation they have in that short span of time is hilarious!) As K tries to decide, G barges into the room panting in obvious panic.
G: The noise…Did you hear that noise? No? (Without waiting for a response, G shoves his way between M and L, clutching his pillow the whole time.) It’s the nine-tailed fox. The nine-tailed fox! (shudders in exaggerated fear because Korean legend says that nine-tailed foxes/females eat the livers of men, especially men like G LOL) I plan on sleeping here tonight, OK?
Blithely ignoring the two angry men, G tightly hugs his pillow and curls up in a fetal position. Relieved by the turn of events, K smiles.
K: Then I’ll make my bed in Yeorim Sahyung’s room tonight.
(LOL I love how G sleeps just as badly as K, especially putting his legs on M…poor M)
*Will continue tomorrow…wanted to at least get the sleeping scene in. 🙂
*Addendum at 11:07 a.m. Saturday morning (10/23/10): I woke up this morning to a rude realization: I have two more sets of papers to grade before Monday! (ugh) This equates to…ugh…I don’t want to even think about how many papers. 😛 Needless to say, episode 16 will just have to exist in this incomplete form. Sorry. Let’s just hope I get all my work done in time to summarize episode 17 come Monday morning. Incidentally, I was looking over my SKKS files (I type out the summaries on a Word document and then copy/paste onto this blog when I’m done) and realized that when I include translations of the dialogue (of the four guys), it takes longer. Hmmm…debating whether to continue with the dialogue translations or simply summarize for faster completion. Anyhow, sorry about the incomplete episode 16…on a brighter note, though, I hear through the Internet grapevine that the English subs will soon be up for episode 16, so you won’t have to wait that much longer. Good weekend, everyone!