Episode 7 of Little Women starts with In-kyung finding In-joo beside a pile of blood and Hye-suk’s dead body. In-joo blames herself for the accident and In-kyung is shocked. In-joo states that she was the one to bring back the orchid that caused the death of Hye-suk. Do-il runs inside the house just as In-joo collapses. He finds the orchid beside Hye-suk’s body.
The family of Hye-suk hold the funeral for her while her relatives are gossiping about In-joo. In-kyung is angry seeing In-hye with Sang-ha. After the funeral, Sang-ha talks to In-joo about her connection with Hye-suk. She mentions that the old woman was their family nurse when she was young and was a mother figure to Sang-ha after the death of her mother.
In-joo asks Sang-ha about the orchid asking why she gave the flower to her in the first place. In-joo states that she had a nightmare which made her check up on Hye-suk and the only thing she recalls is finding herself with a bleeding Hye-suk lying in her arms.
She asks Sang-ha if the aunt died because of the orchid and Sang-ha recalls a story about Hye-suk and explains how the ex-nurse helped her get over her mother’s death. She mentions a “closed door” where Sang-ha kept her feelings bottled up and advises that In-joo should not be overwhelmed and close her feelings behind a closed door too.
Sang-ha states that once she is in a better place, she can open the feelings back up and revisit them. She promises the orchid is not to blame for Hye-suk’s death. However, In-joo claims that she will not bottle up her feelings and hide them away but she will strive to find an explanation for Hye-suk’s death.
Hye-suk’s lawyer discusses her assets and liabilities with her relatives. The old woman had chosen In-kyung as the sole inheritor of her house and her stocks. Once it was revealed that Hye-suk’s liabilities exceed her assets, all her relatives disclaim the inheritance in order to avoid paying the 8 million won deficit. In-kyung owns up to it and states that she will take account of all of In-hye’s assets as well as liabilities.
In-joo is at Do-il’s office where she asks him about Hye-suk’s murder. She states that he is often aware of deaths before they take place and wonders why he warned her before she entered Hye-suk’s house that night. He promises that he is not aware of who committed the murder. She threatens to cancel their deal of going to Singapore together but Do-il is unaffected by the threat.
In-joo feels defeated and offers all of the 70 million won asking him to find the murderer. Do-il states that the investigation will only be possible once they return from Singapore and states that their previous 60:40 deal remains as it is. That evening, In-joo and In-kyung discuss their deceased aunt and In-kyung mentions that she is in pain after death.
In-kyung is at Hye-suk’s house where she receives the deceased great aunt’s cards, documents and keys. In-kyung spots a key card that even Hye-suk’s lawyer is unaware of its use. She then goes through her great aunt’s belongings and is emotional finding the Hye-suk kept her gifts from years ago.
In-joo calls In-kyung and tells her that the person who killed Hye-suk had turned himself in. The news reports that Hye-suk’s chef – Sang Hyeok had confessed to killing the old woman because her suggestion for him to invest in the stock market had made him go broke. In-kyung refuses to believe that a man who was in charge of Hye-suk’s meals for three years would do something to her.
In-joo thinks that someone may have hired him to plot for years and eventually kill Hye-suk on their command. In-kyung asks her older sister about the orchid and In-joo reveals everything about the Jeongran Society and Sang-ha gifting her the orchid on the night of Hye-suk’s death. Jun-ho arrives at the house and informs the sisters that the chef’s statement showed him holding an orchid in his hand.
At his office, Soo-im is mad at Do-il for injuring her men in an accident. He warns her and tells her to leave In-joo alone. She calls Do-il a ‘traitor’s son’ but Do-il threatens of exposing her to Park Jae-sang for pocketing his money. At Hye-suk’s house, Jong-ho, In-kyung and In-joo find a hidden room that they open using the mysterious key card.
The room had been cleaned out but what remains behind is an orchid. They suspect that before Hye-suk was killed, someone took away everything from her lockers. In-kyung sniffs the flower and is suddenly determined to expose the Jeongran Society and learn the truth behind the blue orchid as well as Hye-suk’s murder.
In-joo tells In-kyung that the 70 billion won is in a bank account in Singapore and that she will get the money out soon. Jong-ho tries to ask for a share in the money since he too is risking his life. In-joo promises to hand over the ledgers to In-kyung for her to run the exposé story with.
The two sisters shake it. Meanwhile, Park Jae-sang won the preliminary mayoral election. The trio are watching his speech from Hye-suk’s house when In-kyung reveals that Jae-sang was copying General Won’s speech from the Vietnam War. In the video from the time of the war, In-kyung spots Hye-suk as one of the on-duty nurses.
Park Jae-sang and Sang-ha meet General Won at the hospital where they learn that he breathed on his own for 20 minutes despite being in comatose. Jae-sang talks to General Won telling him he had become the Mayor now but Sang-ha informs him that his goal was actually to be the President.
She mocks him and he seems frustrated but feigns nonchalance. Back at home, Jae-sang and Sang-ha get into a fight when she asks him to get his hands off her and calls him persistent and repulsive just like his father – Park Il-bok. Hyo-rin is stressed and in In-hye’s room after the fight when In-hye looks outside the window to see Jae-sang’s guards forcefully bring Sang-ha inside the house as she flees.
In-hye and Hyo-rin go to the hidden room above the stairs in order to divert their minds from what was going on. Inside the attic is an old dollhouse called ‘The Closed Room’ that is exactly identical to Hwa-young’s house. The doll house has a doll in red heels hanging inside the closet, much like how In-joo found Hwa-young’s dead body. Moreover, the dollhouse also appeared in an old magazine as Sang-ha’s art collection.
Meanwhile, In-joo and In-kyung are looking at Hye-suk’s old photos and they learn that the great aunt was a Vietnam war veteran. They learn that the Jeongran Society was created when the Korean soldiers were in the same hospital. They concur that out of the 13 members of the society, the only two remaining survivors were General Won and Choi Hee-jae who was MIA for many years.
In-hye and Hyo-rin on the other hand, find childhood photos of Sang-ha and her brother with their mother’s face being cut out from every photo. Jong-ho reveals that Choi Hee-jae is Do-il’s father. They also learn that Do-il’s mother is incarcerated for killing someone and leaving in order to meet her first.
The next day, Jae-sang tells Hyo-rin and In-hye that Sang-ha will be in her room for the next few days because she is unwell. He asks In-hye to help Hyo-rin meanwhile there two older Oh sisters meet Do-il’s mother in prison. In-kyung claims that she was in prison for a contract murder because of which Do-il was able to study abroad.
In-kyung alleges that the crime did not have a motive which meant that she did it on someone’s instruction. After In-kyung frustrates her provoking her to leave, In-joo brings Do-il up. She claims that she knows Do-il and tells his mother about the ledgers. His mother gives them an address to find Do-il’s father and asks In-joo to convey her message to Do-il.
Park Jae-sang leaves a rally with Soo-im who informs him about the Oh sisters’ visit to the prison. He tells her to put her best men at work and tail Do-il. Meanwhile, Do-il and In-joo are having drinks at a bar when she convinces him to visit the address. He is initially furious with In-joo for interfering in his personal life but In-joo forcefully gives him the address.
She also tells him about his mother’s response and alleges that Park Il-bok, Jae-sang’s father was probably the person who put his mother up for the murder and is the reason why she is in prison. Do-il is impressed with In-joo’s new plan to avenge Hwa-young’s death and hands over a flash drive to her. He states that Chef Sang-hyeok’s family has been moved to a different apartment alleging that he too was put up to kill Hye-suk upon someone’s instructions.
He tells In-joo that she will be on her own but she responds by saying that she trusts Do-il will save her when need be. The next day, In-joo and Jong-ho tail Do-il to reach the house where his father – Choi Hee-jae lives. Choi Hee-jae lives inside the forest in a house protected by two dogs and In-kyung watches Do-il go inside the house.
The next day, Sang-ha throws a note for In-hye which the youngest sister sends to In-joo. According to the note, Sang-ha asks In-joo to go to Singapore and prepare some cash for her so that she can leave Park Jae-sang with the two girls – Hyo-rin and In-hye. Jae-sang meets In-hye and takes her to the roof of a building asking her to abandon her old life and family to join his family.
He mentions that the next few days are pivotal for them and mentions that he will be looking forward to seeing how she endures them. At the same time, In-kyung and Jong-ho arrive at Choi Hee-jae’s house to invigilate information from him. In-kyung purposefully gets bit by his dog in order to get invited inside Hee-jae’s house.
Once the two are inside, Jong-ho captures the documents using a spy camera on his spectacles. In-kyung reveals her identity and Hee-jae is angry when she brings up the Jeongran Society. He kicks them out but In-kyung leaves her card behind and is sure that Hee-jae will call her. In-hye is at her academy when In-joo visits her once before leaving for Singapore.
She leaves In-hye with some cash and tells her to come to Singapore with In-kyung once she has settled down there. In-hye gives In-joo a birthday present, which happens to be the dashcam footage of Hyo-rin buried beside the orchid tree. After their chat, In-joo goes to the same restaurant she went to with Hwa-young and Sang-ha in an outrageous outfit for a solo birthday dinner.
Do-il confronts Jae-sang for sending someone to tail him and hands Jae-sang his father’s address. Jae-sang sends his men to kill Hee-jae but he sets his house on fire with a motion sensor bomb that kills the men.
Meanwhile, In-kyung chats with another war veteran who talks about Hee-jae being a very rare sniper. Do-il stores the murder weapon used by his mother in a locker and meets In-joo at the restaurant.
A flashback shows that Jae-sang had asked Do-il to get rid of In-joo. At the restaurant, Do-il tells her that someone named Oh In-joo was living in Singapore. He shows her a picture and the woman in the photo has an orchid tattooed on her ankle just like Hwa-young. Do-il tells In-joo that they will have to rush to Singapore to take the money before Hwa-young does so.
The Episode Review
This really was the most intense Little Women episode to date and there is still a lot to unpack. While we know that the chef killed Hye-suk upon instructions from Park Jae-sang, I think leaving Sang-ha out as one of the suspects is not impossible. She is really a master manipulator. Choi Do-il was not a secondary character after all and both his parents are connected to the family.
It is possible that Hye-suk is the mother of Sang-ha and that the Won family and the Oh sisters are related by blood. The attic and the doll house are proof of just that.
On the other hand, Do-il seems like he would betray In-joo but she trusts him now which makes things far more complicated for her. I am pretty sure In-joo will murder Hwa-young (who is posing to be In-joo) for the money.
Jae-sang told In-hye that there is a lot that will be happening in the next few days which makes me anxious about what he is planning next. Come what may, I know that In-kyung sniffing the orchid was the final straw for the Oh sisters to be split up. Instead of being an epitome of sisterhood, this K-drama has the potential to highlight how greed and politics break a family apart.