Episode 10 of Our Blooming Youth begins with Han Joong-eon watching from a distance as the Crown Prince and Sung-on make up. The Crown Prince invites Sung-on to meet at the military grounds to practice archery together.
After their moving reunion, the Crown Prince and Min Jae-yi head back to the palace. On the way, the Crown Prince asks Min Jae-yi to be his friend too. Min Jae-yi asks him to make a formal apology but the Crown Prince does one internally. He admits that he is sorry and that he missed her when he kicked her out. Min Jae -yi doesn’t think it is fair that he only said a short story. Nonetheless, she accepts his apology.
The Crown Prince drops her to his secret library and asks her to go in and sleep. He also tells her that there is some food waiting for her. He listened to her complaints and is willing to provide her with food. He also tells her that he has never forgotten she is a woman even though she wears men’s clothing. This makes Min Jae-yi blush.
She invites the Crown Prince to share a meal with her and the Crown Prince accepts her invitation. They eat and drink and Min Jae-yi opens up about her views on marriage. She says she doesn’t want to get married even after proving her innocence. She believes she is better off living as a eunuch instead of being a woman. She finds the national law concerning marriages outdated and asks the Crown Prince to change them when he becomes King.
The Crown Prince is taken aback by her utterances and still finds her amusing. Min Jae-yi makes him promise that he will make her the head eunuch when he becomes the king. As they talk, Tae-gang secretly watches them and he seems angry and jealous. The Crown Prince asks Min Jae-yi if he can tell Sung-on the truth about her identity.
Min Jae-yi refuses and tells him that they should wait until she is proven innocent. She thanks the Crown Prince for helping her and giving her the courage to do what she wants. She was used to hiding behind her brother’s name and never got credit for her work. At least now, she can get credit even though she is using a fake name and is on the run.
Meanwhile, Sun-on goes back to the storage room where he meets his dad. His dad asks him to forget Min Jae-yi and promises to find him a new wife after the Crown Prince marries. Sung-on is not pleased to hear this as his heart still belongs to Min Jae -yi. He hopes that she is still alive and plans to look for her against his dad’s orders.
Elsewhere, Ga-ram’s secret is discovered by a group of slave hunters. The slave hunters want to use Ga-ram to find Min Jae-yi and then sell them both to Jo Won-bo. On the other hand, Jo Won-bo is not happy to hear the Crown Prince saved the Han family. He, however, is not too distressed as he has another plan. He is concerned that if Han Han Joong-eon is innocent then the bandits might be behind the curse.
As the night lulls by, Bok-Soon lies to her husband Man-deok that he was not summoned. She demands to know what they did at the shaman’s office. Man-deok warns her not to speak of such matters as someone can overhear. He is sure that if he follows the orders given to him, they can return back to their land. He is hoping to reclaim his name and stop living under an alias. Bok-Soon is saddened by the situation but Man-deok insists this is the only way. He asks her to stop worrying and prepare things to send to Naean village as the Buddhist priest is coming.
The next morning, Myung-jin is ordered by his parents to leave for Hamjin where he will start working as a government official of the 8th rank. His dad wants him to work there for six months before his engagement is announced. After that, he is set to return to Hanyang and take up another job as a 5th rank government worker before getting married. Myung-jin refuses to go and his mom loses her temper.
Elsewhere, Ga-ram runs into Bok-Soon and offers to help her mend clothes. She lies to Bok-Soon that she will ask the help from her mother who is good with needlework but she intends to do the job herself. Ga-ram gets to work and finds Myung-jin being mocked by his angry betrothed. She is mad that he is yet to call off their wedding. Ga-ram is surprised that Myung-jin is not talking back given that he had a lot to say before.
Myung-jin tells her that he is not willing to marry the lady but is scared of his mom. He also doesn’t want to hurt the lady even though she hurt him with her words.
At the palace, the Crown Prince meets with the King and explains how the plum tree got burnt. He also tells the king about his suspicions of Jo Won-bo using the case to thwart his mortal enemy, Han Joong-eon. As they talk, Jo Won-bo arrives and is welcomed in by the king. Jo Won-bo plays innocent and says he was only doing his duty by informing the king about the ledgers.
He reminds the Crown Prince that he should separate public affairs from his personal feelings. He claims the Crown Prince is overstepping and supporting someone who was suspected of being a traitor. He questions if the Crown Prince is letting his friendship with Sung-on affect his judgement. The King takes Jon Won-bo’s side and asks the Crown Prince to remember his duty. He is not allowed to interfere with the state’s politics.
Jon Won-bo leaves happy and meets Han Joong-eon. Han Joong-eon confronts him about his devious plans and warns him to distinguish between loyalty and greed. Jo Won-bo points out that Han Joong-eon should feel secure given that his son is a friend of the Crown Prince.
Concurrently, the Crown Prince asks Sung-on for a favour getting the Diaries of the Royal Secretariat. He is hoping to read the official recordings of what happened ten years ago. Sung-on manages to secure the book and it doesn’t provide much information. It simply states that Song, a blacksmith from Byeokcheon led a rebellion and took over Byeokcheon. He took power after a bloody coup de tat and freed prisoners. He then proceeded to fortify the town and committed war crimes.
Jo Won-oh was the Governor of Byeokcheon at the time and he was beaten and left for dead outside the town. He managed to walk 40km and arrived at Myeongju and reported the rebellion. The king gave Jo Won-bo the right to command the military force (Byeongbu) and subdue the rebellion as the Minister of War.
Jo Won-bo heads straight to Byeokcheon and fights with the traitors. He returns victorious, having subdued the rebellion and captured the leader and his men. The king ordered Song to be put on a stake in Hanyang and he died after ten days. Jo Won-bo was awarded the title of the Prince of the Court of Seongju. He also got the meritorious subject status, land and 15 slaves as a reward. Byeokcheon was named traitor’s land and blocked, no one can live or go back there.
After reading the official report, Min Jae-yi notices that all cases lead to Byeokcheon. Everyone involved from Oh Man-shik to the shaman were from Byeokcheon. Sung-on also gets a new lead about a woman who visited the shaman bureau frequently. The witness didn’t see the woman’s face but she noted she only visited when the shaman got back from Gaeseong.
In the meantime, the court officials attend their daily meeting where Han Joong-eon calls for the reinvestigation of the Byeokcheon case. The Jo family opposes this strongly saying that Jo Won-oh is the living proof. Han Joong-eon insists the case should be reinvestigated and Jo Won-bo be stripped of every gift he got if he lied about the rebellion.
After the daily meeting, Jo Won-bo assures his fellow official not to worry about the Byeokcheon case being reopened. As they talk, Jo Won-bo drops a bag of money for the court lady who works at the Eastern Palace. It looks like she is his informant. Jo Won-bo spots the Queen by the pond at the palace and we get to see what the Queen is thinking to herself. She has a grudge against her uncle and has no plans of helping him get more power.
Luckily, Jo Won-bo is unaware of her true intentions towards him. Based on the Queen’s stance, it seems like she knew Song personally and is angry that he is being called a traitor. She tells Prince Myungan that Song was a good man and to stop being afraid as Song would never hurt them.
The episode ends with the Crown Prince calling people who originated from Byeokcheon and the court lady preparing to send a letter to her master about this.
The Episode Review
We are now beginning to get deep into the mystery of what led to the curse and the plot is thickening. It is becoming clear who the spies are and even though we don’t know their motives, we know it has something to do with Byeokcheon.
Jo Won-bo and Jo Won-oh lied about the rebellion and made Song their fall guy. I believe the Queen knew Song personally and agreed to get married to the King as she plots her revenge. It is not certain where her loyalty lies but we know she is not on team Jo Won-bo.
I can’t wait for next week to see what the Crown Prince discovers about Song and Jo Won-bo’s next move. I still find Tae-gang suspicious, is he jealous about how close Eunuch Soon-dol is to the Crown Prince and is he the soldier spy?
|Expect A Full Season Write-Up When This Season Concludes!|