Episode 11 of Once Upon a Small Town, we see Ji-yul being pulled in for a kiss as Ja-young finally confesses her feelings for him. They hear someone approaching and immediately scatter around as he asks her to hide away. Nurse Yeong-suk is giving the vet a daily run down and Ji-yul manages to sneak her out from the rear exit without letting Yeong-suk know.
A while later, Ji-yul sneaks out and chats with Ja-young about their new relationship. She asks him to keep it a secret afraid that the villagers will gossip. Ji-yul agrees but is very clingy with her. Ja-young is sure that this is not too good for her heart but still is excited about the new change in her life. At her house, Ja-young recalls how she and Ji-yul used to be secret friends as kids and how they now were secretly dating.
At the clinic, Yeong-suk is shocked that Ji-yul was making it seem as though he wanted to stay. After work, Ji-yul asks Ja-young to meet him and the two sneak out. Ji-yul is shocked at how Ji-yul’s persona took a complete 180-degree shift from being a rude person to a clingy lover. He asks her out on a date to Seoul and they drive around late at night. Ji-yul thinks that Seoul is safest for them to date in secret and says that it is closer than she thinks.
Once in Seoul, Ji-yul shows her around his clinic and claimed that the city wasn’t as far along as the town. Ja-young claims that it took them four hours to drive there but she claims that it did not seem like a lot because they were together. The two end up flirting with each other and he takes her out to eat at his favourite spot.
The two drive back home in a chaotically flirtatious ride and eventually make it back in town early the next morning. Ji-yul drops her off at home and asks her to stop addressing him as “Doctor” and asks if Ja-young could call him “honey” instead. She laughs at his comment but once back home, considers calling him honey. Ja-young is very animated at work and the officers are concerned about her behaviour.
For the first time, Ja-young ends up putting off work for her personal life and the officers are further shocked. She is texting Ji-yul when he suddenly breaks into the police station because he missed Ja-young. The couple has awkward small talk with the officers watching them in shock but Ja-young gets an excuse to hang out with Ji-yul during the work day.
The two are spending some romantic alone time in Ji-yul’s van and are about to kiss but Seon-deong interrupts them asking what they were up to. The child tells Ji-yul and Ja-young that he was dating Hwi-won but has decided to keep it a secret from the villagers. Ja-young finds it ironic that the kids were dating in secret but Ji-yul does not worry much about being found out by the kids.
The couple gets back to their respective jobs and Ja-young is in a chirpy mood despite the hot weather. The villager women wonder why Ja-young is laughing to herself but she lies that Seon-deong sent her a funny text. The neighbouring villager, Mal-geum joins them and starts mocking them for overworking Ja-young but proceeds to ask the cop for help.
This causes a fight to erupt between the villagers but Ja-young does not stop them and only laughs to herself. Ja-young explains that she used to want people to seek her help which made her appease them but that is not the case anymore and claims that she will not be helping people who do not think well of her, especially Mal-geum.
Ji-yul and Ja-young are sneaking around for their date in the village which seems exciting to the couple. They try to find restaurants all around the village but nothing seems discreet enough for them to eat at. The couple comes up with a plan where Ji-yul makes it to the restaurant before she and Ja-young follow behind, pretending the two has a co-incidental run-in. After the meal, the couple spends some romantic time in Ji-yul’s car.
The couple is discussing nicknames for each other and they settle on “Dot” and “Spot” based on the beauty spots on each of their faces. Ji-yul is at the cafe when he sees Sang-hyeon too has a beauty spot on his face. He tells Ja-young that they will not be using nicknames for each other. Ja-young has a chat with Sang-hyeon and thanks him for being supportive of her relationship with Ji-yul despite his feelings for her.
She is grateful that Sang-hyeon understands where she is coming from and wanted to be the first person to tell Sang-hyeon before the villagers found out. Ji-yul walks Ja-young home later that night and they talk about how keeping their relationship a secret could be taxing but Ji-yul claims it is also very thrilling.
He kisses Ja-young at the corner of the street but they are startled when they hear a loud noise from the villagers. Ji-yul ends up shielding Ja-young with his body as the villagers approach them with torches.
The Episode Review
This episode was so wholesome and Once Upon A Small Town is really a healing K-drama. The way Ji-yul’s personality took a complete turn makes him way cuter immediately. I am glad that Ja-young ends up defending herself and prioritizing her time over worrying about the village because she deserves it.
I could go days watching Ji-yul and Ja-young sneak around the town hiding their relationship but I am putting my money on the fact that the village already knows about the relationship. Someone give us a compilation of jealous Ji-yul because he is so chaotic and hilarious. I am sure the ending to this episode will lead to the long-distance aspect of their relationship.
However, I am repeating myself when I am saying that the long-distance part of Ja-young and Ji-yul’s relationship could be further explored if the show was longer. On we head to the season finale.