For those of you who still have nightmares about this heart-wrenching episode, you may want to skip today’s final “Walk down Memory Lane” recap. It’s the dreaded Episode 19…Brace yourselves for the anguish that is to come!
On a bright note, there are some squee-worthy moments and a side conversation with Jules. 😉
You can take a look at the original post and comments here.
The following recap has been republished verbatim from its original publication back on March 23, 2013, almost an entire year after the series ended:
As our beloved series draws rapidly to a close–yes, I know that the series is already over, but it’s not over for me–I’m So I wrote this introduction bit so long ago that it no longer applies…obviously. LOL. Perhaps I should have titled this “The Episode That Waited Forever for Recapping.” Heh. I know that at least two people will be glad to see this recap…despite its overdue appearance. This one’s for all you K2H Twinkles, especially Mawiie and Jules! 😉 See, Jules! I finally made good use of all your work…from *cough* not so long ago.
Recap: While her brother and man are off on their dangerous mission, Jae Shin upholds her part of the bargain she struck with Shi Kyung.
She socializes, smiling all the while (Jules: “even if it’s fake”).
Back on the clifftop, Shi Kyung points his gun squarely at Jae Ha’s head.
Jae Ha sits, staring at Shi Kyung in disbelief as Bong Gu tells Jae Ha to decide: himself or Korea?
Bong Gu asks smugly how it feels to have Jae Ha’s “person” cross over to his evil side?
In an abrupt turn of events, though, his “person” responds by swinging the gun away from Jae Ha and redirecting it point-blank at Bong Gu. Yes!
Meanwhile, Hang Ah arrives on the sea cliff above them, wielding a mean-ass (Jule’s words) sniper rifle. Heh. Wifey’s got Jae Ha’s six covered! Heh…love her!
In a flashback, we learn that Shi Kyung and Jae Ha’s conversation earlier was spoken in code. *Happy sigh* This show really gets me *thumps chest* right here.
Shi Kyung moves forward, and Mia ends up dead. (Jules: Is it wrong that I cheered? ST: Definitely not! Good triumphing over Evil should always be celebrated. We’re not blood-thirsty Twinkles…just Twinkles who value justice.)
Within a short time, Bong Gu is arrested, and all appears right with the world…until he pulls out a hidden gun. Uh-oh…
And just like that, our beloved knight in shining armor–Jae Shin’s sweetheart–crumbles to the ground with his friend and king’s arms cradling him. (Jules: Oh no, oh no, oh no; please tell me this is just a nightmare….ST: Dang it! I knew it was too good to be true!)
With blood seeping from his lips, Shi Kyung, Jae Ha’s right-hand man/trusted confidant/goto guy/bff/etc. breathes his last breath, but not before he uses his last moments to try to reassure Jae Ha that his death is not Jae Ha’s fault. Aw…man, even to the very end, Shi Kyung exemplifies awesomeness!
Completely unaware of the tragedy, Jae Shin sings and thinks of Shi Kyung.
Jae Ha screams–over and over again–for Shi Kyung not to die, giving him a royal command that He. Is. Not. To. Die.
But true to the classic hero’s journey, Jae Ha needs to truly come into his own without anyone (other than his wife) by his side, and so his first true friend, the one who helped to teach him the meaning of serving his country and of becoming a good king, dies in the warmth of his friend and king’s arms.
Once back at the palace, Hang Ah breaks the news to Jae Shin, who utters a denial, saying that he’d promised to come back to her, that he was merely going on a vacation, that she had done her homework, that…. This is so heart-wrenchingly painful.
When Hang Ah hands Jae Shin a small box with Shi Kyung military tags, the reality of the situation finally hits her, and she clings to her sister-in-law as sob after sob racks her body.
Meanwhile, Jae Ha finds Secretary Eun in Shi Kyung’s empty office and tells him that they’re both thinking the same thing: It’s Jae Ha’s fault that Shi Kyung is dead. However, since he’s king, he can’t dwell on this, and he tells Secretary Eun that he shouldn’t either. They can’t afford to think like that. *thumps chest to ease the building ache there*
With tears welling up in his eyes, Jae Ha tells Secretary Eun that he may be different from Shi Kyung but that he’ll try his best to be a good son to him…in Shi Kyung’s place. *thumps chest harder and fights back tears*
Shi Kyung has a full military funeral with honors, and Dong Ha requests that Jae H release Shi Kyung from active duty so that his soul can return.
Jae Ha orders him home and then salutes. *sniffle blink blink*
Bong-gu is questioned by the ICC and bail is–thankfully–denied. Hurray! Justice! *fist pump*
Becoming more comfortable with life in South Korea, Hang Ah continues with her volunteer work and fields an adorably flirtatious call from Jae Ha, who secretly suggests that she and he take a walk “holding hands.” Pffft. So cute, these two! They make the simplest things sound so adorable and so…wrong! LOL.
Meanwhile, Bong Gu and Club M use their contacts to get the US to put pressure on South Korea to release Bong Gu. Clearly showing his outrage and power as a monarch, Jae Ha lashes out that he doesn’t want to hear any threats unless it’s an official position. Go, Jae Ha!
Pressure continues to mount with China now putting economic pressure on Jae Ha, prompting some of his advisors to suggest that he relent while Secretary Eun tells him to stay strong and resist. Hang Ah learns from her father the current situation and tells him that her most important job right now is to protect Jae Ha. She asks her father for North Korea’s help.
Seeing Ja Ha with literally the weight of his country on his shoulders, she gives him a light shoulder rub and then tells him she’s going to get North Korea to help them.
Fearing what might happen to her, he asks if she can’t just stay put and be safe, in the palace, away from Bong Gu. Of course, Hang Ah can’t live like that…in fear. She asks for how long? Until Bong Gu is gone for good?
And knowing he’s about to say the wrong answer, Jae Ha answers yes, prompting his fiance to storm out of the room. His response? To bury his head in his hand. Man…between a rock and a hard place, Jae Ha.
Later, Jae Ha arranges for Hang Ah to go out for a late-night community service and surprises her with a sudden flurry of fireworks and fountains…
…and himself. *melts* Yeah, there’s a reason why men dislike Jae Ha so much; he makes them look bad. LOL
He apologizes and tells her that he just can’t bear to lose her…Without her, he’s basically nothing. Aw….
Moved by his words and heart, Hang Ah grabs him for a hug, and the two have their previously canceled date–the one he had to cancel because of all the international pressure to release Bong Gu–right then and there.
They go on carnival rides, and though she has to be coaxed on the rollercoaster, once she’s on, she’s not getting off. Heh. Hang Ah asks to go on again and again, much to Jae Ha’s dismay and poor stomach. Pffft.
They have an adorably cute date, but eventually, talk turns to the upcoming Bong Gu trial. Knowing that Hang Ah is insisting on going to plead their case, he asks what she will do if she runs into Bong Gu.
Hang Ah shows him rather, uh, forcefully just how she would deal with the low life who made her man cry tears of blood. She reminds him that she’ll only be gone three days. Knowing when to stop, Jae Ha tells her to come back soon. Aw…I love how this series really weaves a compelling story between these two.
The two seal their new mission with a kiss.
Unfortunately, she’s too late, and Bong Gu’s bail is granted (Jules: I wasn’t aware they granted bail to men in jail for mass murder – that seems rather an egregious error in judgment. ST: Agreed! *shrugs* But this is Kdramaland.)
Hang Ah and Bong Gu meet outside the ICC, and he informs her of his intention to meddle with her wedding plans.
Despite Bong Gu’s threat to ruin their wedding, she responds by telling him that his eyes give him away: he’s afraid. Love how she can hold her own!
She returns to the palace to ask Secretary Eun if she and Jae-ha should really marry. What if it causes a war? Secretary Eun answers by asking Jae Ha if he were a regular citizen, what kind of king would he want. Jae Ha smiles as he realizes his answer. *wide smile*
Meanwhile, Jae Shin is brought a box of Shi-kyung’s personal effects. Aw…Shi Kyung used her birthday as the combination to the safety box. Inside, she finds a video tape. And since the only place in the palace that has a VHS player is Shi Kyung’s old office, Jae Shin goes there to watch this old-fashioned video made by her now deceased beloved. Uh-Oh. Prepare the tissues!
She watches a video recording he’s made…This is soooooooo adorable the way Shi Kyung films this. He first apologizes for the kiss and then tells her of his feelings…
…how much he likes her (Jules: ahh, this is killing me! ST: Pass me the tissues.)
He momentarily pauses as he realizes that she’ll only see this video if he doesn’t return and then continues on to say that he’ll definitely be back–to tell her in person how much he loves her. When he returns, he’ll be worthy of her.
She breaks down in tears (Jules: I break down with her. ST: Me, too.)
Seeing Jae Ha’s resolve, Club M bombs Michigan (Jules: Why Michigan? ST: dunno.) and blames North Korea.
With escalating international tension, Hang Ah’s father tries to intervene, but it’s far too late for that.
Acting under orders, although he clearly doesn’t like what he’s about to do, Dong Ha tells Hang Ah that her father is here to meet her while he escorts Jae Ha back to the palace.
And that’s when Jae Ha is informed that war between North and South Korea has been declared. His response? To demand to know where Hang Ah is.
As for Hang Ah, she learns from her father that she’s to return to the North with him…never to return. War has been declared.
And as quickly as those words are spoken, Hang Ah is dragged back “home,” away from her fiance.
Post-Recap Thoughts: Whew~! It’s been a while, but this series really has a talent for sucking a viewer right back into the thick of things.
By now, many of you have probably already seen this–some of you multiple times *cough Mawiie cough*–but this episode really brings out all the proverbial guns. Yes, the power that Bong Gu and Club M wield is simply ridiculous, but the human emotions behind our beloved characters are anything but that. I had forgotten how the writer is so deft at giving us the funny one moment only to smack us across the face with the heart-wrenching and the serious in the next breath.
This episode truly exemplifies writing and acting at its best. Love LOve LOVe LOVE!!!!
I’ll end this post here since it’s waaaay past my bedtime. However, I really did want to get this recap posted before another week passed. I hope this long-awaited recap was a nice surprise and treat for you all.
Have a great rest of the weekend!