The Song Soo-cheon Tombstone
Episode 19 of Our Blooming Youth begins with Jae-yi realizing she is being framed once again and this time, she will be accused of killing the Crown Princess.
Elsewhere, Left State Councilor Han Joong-eon helps the Crown Prince decode the last letter Min Jae-yi’s dad sent. According to the letter, Min Ho-seung accidentally found a tombstone at his family gravesite. The tombstone was discovered after a landslide and its location was suspicious as the land was considered to be sacred. The land was devoted to the King and is therefore abominable that someone used it as a family shrine. It is an act of treason.
The letter explains that upon further investigation, Min Ho-Seung found out that the tombstone belonged to Song Soo-cheon, the blacksmith who was accused of starting a rebellion in Byeokcheon a decade ago. On the tombstone, it was written that a son of Song named Song Hyun, born on March 9th in the year of the Red Snake, would be the next king.
The Crown Prince is shocked as the only one he knows that was born on that day is Prince Myungan. Concurrently, the Queen tells the story of Song Hyun to Prince Myungan and it is quite a riveting tale. The queen was a courtesan who worked to pay her debt. She met Song Soo-cheon, a blacksmith who came from a somewhat well-off background but was humble. Song Soo-cheon fell in love with her and paid off all her debts.
They had a humble wedding in Byeokcheon and their friends and neighbours attended. They didn’t have much but they were happy and content. The queen got pregnant and the couple planned to name their son Hyun, which means kindness. Unfortunately, Song Soo-cheon was killed a month later and Byeokcheon was declared the land of the rebellion.
Back in the present, the Crown Prince wonders if what the letter says is true. The Left State Councilor, Han Joong-eon, implores him to strengthen his resolve. He needs to put aside his personal feelings and think of the nation. The Crown Prince takes the letter to Myung-jin’s lab, and he asks them to go find the tombstone that Min Ho-Seung buried in his kitchen. Myung-jin and Ga-ram readily agree to help and think it’s the evidence that Sim-yeong went crazy looking for in the house before his death.
On the other hand, Sung-on questions the Queen’s motive for subtly telling him that Jae-yi is Eunuch Soon-dol.
At the palace, the Crown Prince returns to find his secret vault open and the ghost letters missing. Eunuch So reveals that Soon-dol was looking for him and he looked distressed saying the Crown Princess is in danger. The Crown Prince rushes to the Royal Villa and finds Jae-yi being escorted out by royal guards. He orders them to release her but they inform him that the King has ordered his arrest and he was found guilty of killing the Crown Princess.
The Crown Prince is shocked to hear that Jae-yi confessed to the murder. Jae-yi gives him a look warning him not to intervene. She then proceeds to announce that she killed the Crown Prince using her dagger and that she is the Gaeseong murderer. Everyone is surprised especially after she adds that she infiltrated the palace under the guise of a eunuch to assassinate the Crown Prince. The Crown Prince is left with no choice but to watch her be taken away.
He asks Eunuch So to find Court Lady Choi who was in charge of taking care of the Crown Prince. Unfortunately, the Queen and Court Lady Kwon Deok-sim have already influenced her to kill herself after killing the Crown Princess. They also change her suicide note and make it look like she killed herself because she failed to protect the Crown Princess from Jae-yi. In reality, Court Lady Choi harboured resentment towards the Crown Prince because she believed he killed Prince Ui-hyeon.
All evidence now points to Jae-yi and the Crown Prince feels helpless while Sung-on is restless. Sung-on wishes to run to the palace and save her but he must keep his distance in order to help her and the Crown Prince. He speaks to his dad and is surprised that his dad sides with him and Jae-yi.
Meanwhile, the Crown Prince understands that Jae-yi sacrificed herself so that his enemies won’t use her against him. It was the only option she had. Sadly, Jae-yi is locked up at the palace prisons wallowing in her misery.
The next morning, Jo Won-bo is quick to bring up the Jae-yi matter during the daily court. He along with other Jo family officials ask the King to depose the Crown Prince. They want him to interrogate Jae-yi and torture her until she admits she was colliding with the Crown Prince. They also want him to impeach Left State Councilor Han Joong-eon for manipulating the Queen’s selection. Left State Councilor Han Joong-eon admits that he is guilty and asks to be punished for his crime.
In the meantime, the Crown Prince visits Jae-yi at the prison and scolds her for confessing to a crime she didn’t commit. Jae-yi asks him to let her go and says she did it to save him. She shows him the new ghost letter and the curse is different from the one in the previous letter. This time the letter prophesied that he will die alone with no wives or kids. Jae-yi knew that it meant that the Crown Princess was in danger but unfortunately, she got there too late.
She asks him to stop them and the Crown Prince feels there is no need to fight if she will be gone. Jae-yi asks him to strengthen his resolve and continue the fight. She says she is not afraid to die but her only regret was that she didn’t tell him that she is in love with him. She thanks him for their happy moments and the Crown Prince question why she waited so long to tell him her feelings.
Later that night, Tae-kang meets with his twin. San asks him to come with him to Naean Village and fight with the people of Byeokcheon. Tae-kang is torn because he is happy his brother is alive but sad that he is a criminal. He asks him to tell the Crown Prince the truth but San says he doesn’t trust the Crown Prince. He asks Tae-kang to reconsider and promises to wait for him. Tae-kang later tells the Crown Prince about his conversation with his twin brother.
In Gaeseong, Myung-jin and Ga-ram find the tombstone Min Ho-Seung hid in his kitchen. They return to Hanyang to find hell has broken loose. The Crown Prince is about to be deposed and Jae-yi has been arrested.
The king is overwhelmed by the number of appeals being sent by different government officials calling for the deposition of the Crown Prince. The King receives a secret letter in one of the appeals but hides it after reading it. Jo Won-bo also makes a personal appeal and is surprised to see the Crown Prince begging to be deposed as well. He starts to wonder if the Crown Prince is willing to give up his position for love.
Sung-on also visits the palace and begs the Crown Prince to save Jae-yi if he loves her. He admits that he resented the Crown Prince for taking Jae-yi from him but their friendship is important too.
After much consideration, the King deposes the Crown Prince. He also impeaches Left State Councilor Han Joong-eon and keeps him under house arrest. Luckily, he doesn’t pass judgement on Sung-on. The Prince, the Princess and the Crown Prince officials plead with the King to change his mind but he refuses. Jae-yi is sentenced to death by execution.
The Crown Prince prepares to leave the palace and the queen calls Sung-on to another meeting. She knows that Sung-on is going to escort the Crown Prince to Ganghwa Island. She pretends to be a concerned mom and gives Sung-on tea to give the Crown Prince during his journey. Her plan is for the Crown Prince to go crazy after taking the tea filled with the eggs of the special fish. She is also hoping Sung-on will betray the Crown Prince.
The Jo family is also happy and celebrates that they were able to deal with the Crown Prince and Left State Councilor Han Joong-eon in one blow. They only find it unfortunate that Sung-on is still a matter they have to resolve. Jo Won-bo decides to make Sung-on an offer and invites him to his house before he leaves for Ganghwa Island.
He asks Sung-on to kill the Crown Prince on his way there and in return he will give him a top government position when Prince Myungan becomes King. Sung-on agrees on the condition that they sign a contract to make sure each party keeps their word.
The day arrives and the Crown Prince and his entourage leave the palace for Ganghwa Island. They are attacked by the Queen’s and Jo Won-bo’s men. The Queen wants bloodshed so that it will look like the prophecy is coming true. Jo Won-bo wants to make a clear path for Prince Myungan to take the seat. In the end, Sung-on pretends to attack the Crown Prince and Jo Won-bo’s right-hand man leaves it to him to finish the job.
It is also the same day Jaeyi is set to be beheaded and the Crown Prince sends Tae-kang to save her. They reunite in the forest with Ga-ram and Myung-jin and set off to Naean village. Ga-ram tells them that even Man-deok and Bok-soon are from Byeokcheon and have already left for Naean with their kids.
As soon as the Crown Prince leaves the palace, more appeals are sent to the King to name Prince Myungan as the next Crown Prince. It is revealed that the secret letter the King got was from the Crown Prince asking him to meet in the library. There, they plotted the best way to defeat the Jo family by acting like they were giving in to their demands.
Left State Councilor Han Joong-eon also agreed to be part of this facade so they can collect evidence against the Jo family. Their plan worked well and Jo Won-bo has no idea he is being played.
Jo Won-bo only starts suspecting the worst when he is informed that Jae-yi escaped and there has been no news of the Crown Prince’s death. He grows more concerned when Jo Won-oh comes rushing in after remembering where he first saw Man-deok. He sends his men to investigate where Man-deok and his family went and they find a letter left by the kids for Ga-ram and Myung-jin.
In the letter, the kids ask them to visit Naean Village. The men also found all the evidence Myung-jin was collecting related to the Gaeseong murders.
In Naean Village, the people of Byeokcheon prepare for war. The Crown Prince and his team are also on their way to Naean. With everything hanging in the balance, the episode ends with Jo Won-bo realizing who the woman from the Song family is.
The Episode Review
We are only one episode to the finale and it is getting interesting as the different parties prepare to go to war. On one hand, we have the Crown Prince who wants to correct the mistake made against the people of Byeokcheon ten years ago. On the other hand, we have the Queen who has been plotting her revenge for her son to take the throne for the past ten years.
Lastly, we have Jo Won-bo driven by greed for power and riches and wants to establish his family as the next king. He and the Queen have the same dream but different motives.
Many things happened in this episode, we have the friendship of Sung-on and the Crown Prince being tested over Jae-yi. Thankfully, they are reasonable men who value their friendship and I gotta say, Sung-on is a remarkable man. I hope he finds a woman who will love him wholeheartedly.
I am shocked to learn the history of the Queen. How did she manage to become queen when she was one month pregnant already? This plotline felt rushed and brought forth more questions than answers. It will be interesting to see how Prince Myungan will handle this news.
Either way, most things were wrapped up and we are only left with the final takedown. May the Lee family win!
|Expect A Full Season Write-Up When This Season Concludes!|