I wish Coffee Prince were a man, so I could marry it. We’d be happy together making beautiful latte art and raising lots of musically inclined children.
……Coffee Prince is a GIRL?!?!
SONG OF THE DAY
Linus’ Blanket (라이너스의 담요) – “Labor in Vain” [ zShare download ]
[First off, credit where it’s due — thanks for the compliments on the new Coffee Prince-themed banner. You might have to force-reload (control + F5) to see it. All credit goes to Luv, who’s been wonderful in designing all but one of my headers. Thanks a zillion, Luv!]
EPISODE 12 SUMMARY
Eun Chan still comes to work despite being told to quit. She approaches the still-angry Han Gyul, who gives her three minutes to talk. After that, she’d better leave because she’s fired.
Eun Chan: “In the beginning, I never thought you’d like someone like me. It seemed like you liked Yu Ju. She’s so beautiful that I can’t compare with her, so I thought I was better off being seen as a man. When I asked how you would feel if I were a woman, you said you weren’t going to date around anymore, that you’d marry a nice woman from a nice background, someone your grandmother and mother approved of. I’m not womanly or pretty, but if we were sworn brothers, I could be with you all the time. When we goofed around, and you treated me so well… I liked it so much I couldn’t tell you the truth.”
Han Gyul: “I really hate this. Why am I always betrayed by loved ones? Why didn’t my father tell me about my birth mother? Why couldn’t you tell me the truth? I thought about it so much my head felt like it would burst — it was because you couldn’t trust me. My father and you both. And I loved you so much. But you couldn’t trust me.”
Eun Chan: “It’s not that I couldn’t trust you, I couldn’t trust myself.”
Han Gyul: “When I said I liked you even as a man, I didn’t care what the world would think of me, disregarding my friends, family. I went through a lot of pain getting to the point where I decided those things didn’t matter. Go Eun Chan, I need someone who trusts me. Even if everyone else curses at me for being useless, I needed someone who’d believe: ‘Choi Han Gyul just didn’t have the opportunity to show himself. He’s a guy who does what he puts his mind to. He’s just someone who hasn’t yet found what he wants to do in life, but he truly can accomplish what he sets out to do.’ I needed someone to have that kind of faith in me. Not like you, who deceived me even in love, worrying over being found out.”
Eun Chan: “I didn’t have the confidence. I didn’t want that to happen… I wanted to tell you, but I was afraid you’d wouldn’t see me anymore. But the reason I’m telling you this now… is because I want you to see me as a woman. If you hate me, I can’t do anything about it, but I’m so sorry, and I know I was so wrong… But I like you. I love you. If you tell me to quit, I will. If you don’t want to see me… couldn’t you still see me anyway?”
Han Gyul: “I don’t have the confidence to continue. I don’t know who you are. The Go Eun Chan I knew was always honest with me, who trusted and liked everyone, facing the world just as he was. I wanted to be like him. But you… You aren’t the Go Eun Chan I know. Let’s not meet again.”
Phew, way to reduce me to a sniveling mess in the first five minutes.
Han Gyul tells Mr. Hong that Eun Chan will be leaving, and Mr. Hong scolds him for his behavior. Yes, he gets that Han Gyul went through a harder time than Eun Chan, but why is he so angry? She’s a girl, and they like each other — that’s a cause for celebration. Mr. Hong can’t stand working there like this, so he leaves. Ha Rim tries to convince him to stay, and Han Gyul tells him he’ll be gone in a month anyway. Mr. Hong says, “Fine, then I guess I’ll be back in a month,” and walks out.
Eun Chan packs her things and leaves. Han Gyul watches her go.
Han Gyul has no desire to talk to his cousin, but Han Sung calls and says all he has to do is listen. He explains that he first met Eun Chan when she delivered milk to his house, and yes, she was the girl he took to Yu Ju’s exhibit.
Han Sung: “That day, she was really beautiful. But by the time I started to see her in that way, she already had feelings for you. She cried as she told me how much she liked you.”
Han Gyul: “This is annoying. How long do I have to listen to you?”
Han Sung: “She wanted to tell you, but she had no confidence in herself, because she felt like she wasn’t a woman or a man. She sobbed her heart out. I’ll be honest with you. I was swayed toward her. But since she liked you, I decided to just be friends. I’m not even sure why I wavered. That’s really all there was. The fact that Eun Chan told you the truth even at this late point is because she has faith in you.”
Yu Ju apologizes for not telling Han Gyul about Eun Chan, and explains that she’s leaving. Han Gyul asks if it’s because of Eun Chan. Was the relationship between Han Sung and Eun Chan serious enough to drive Yu Ju away? Yu Ju explains: “Their relationship wasn’t a matter of how far they went. It’s just that Han Sung’s feelings swayed toward her, and even then it was just a short while. So forgive Eun Chan.”
Han Gyul asks why she’s leaving, and she answers they’ve got a lot of issues between them. Yu Ju was always the one depending on Han Sung, and he was the one to comfort and accept her. She’d thought his anger was something exclusive to her (born of love): “But I realized that’s not true. I know I’m not being mature about this, and I can’t be cool either. I’m really horrible, I know. But my feelings don’t listen.”
Han Gyul wonders how Han Sung felt, knowing how he liked Yu Ju all this while, and concludes that Han Sung didn’t worry about losing Yu Ju to his cousin because he trusted her — so much that he waited for her even after she left for another man. Yu Ju: “Then you don’t have faith in Eun Chan.”
Han Gyul says he’d always felt that Yu Ju and Han Sung were so rock-solid that he never had a shot of squeezing himself in between them. For Han Sung’s sake, he asks her not to go: “If you do, I think I’d hate you.”
Eun Chan and Han Gyul spend the next several days moping. Han Gyul recalls Eun Chan’s words from the first scene, and also thinks of Mr. Hong’s words: “Ask yourself carefully if you can live without Go Eun Chan.”
Han Sung drives Yu Ju to the airport, and tries to convince her one last time not to go. Their argument spills over onto the sidewalk when Yu Ju tells him to pull over. Han Sung yells: “You strayed too. Why is it okay for you, but not for me?!” He put up with so much — he knew she was lying about DK even before they broke up — but he forgave her.
Yu Ju counters — if he’d been so accepting all this time, why is it now that he faltered? She watched him lie to her face when he said Eun Chan was merely a cute little kid. Han Sung admits that he made a mistake, but it wasn’t love. Yu Ju can’t tell the difference.
As she turns and walks off, Han Sung begs her not to leave, shouting after her, “Don’t go. Don’t go!”
[Side note: The scene was okaaay, but felt a little… acted. Usually this series does amazing things with letting scenes breathe (like in Episode 7 when Yu Ju waited all day in Han Sung’s house, and Han Gyul dealt with the aftermath of his fight with Eun Chan), but this felt suffocated. The emotions seemed prepared, not in-the-moment (which is what I loved about their fights in Episode 11). And perhaps a little overacted. Okay, criticism over.]
At the airport, Yu Ju finds DK waiting for her — but stays at a distance. They have a wordless exchange — and, realizing Yu Ju’s not leaving, DK goes alone with a rueful wave. Han Sung races to the airport to find her, but he’s too late, and thinks that she’s already gone.
Now jobless, Eun Chan keeps herself occupied peeling chestnuts and sewing doll eyes. Taking a break to go to the convenience store, she runs into Han Sung, who can tell she hasn’t been doing so well.
Han Sung: “It’s because he likes you so much. That’s why he’s so angry. Although he doesn’t look like it, he’s someone with deep affections, and once he gives you his heart, he gives it all. So just wait a little.”
Han Sung assures her Han Gyul will understand, but tells her not to tell Han Gyul about their kiss — because he’s found that when you tell someone something to ease your own guilty conscience, sometimes it only brings the other person pain. She thanks him and tells him again that he’s like Santa, and Han Sung responds,
“I’m the one who should be thankful, for being able to be Santa to you. So even if it’s difficult, be strong. Han Gyul has really fallen for you.”
At the cafe, Han Gyul is confronted on all sides with appeals to forgive Eun Chan. No matter how mean Ha Rim was to Eun Chan, when talking to Han Gyul, he plays the part of pacifier, asking to hire her back. Min Yub has heard from Eun Sae how poorly Eun Chan is doing these days, eating badly, not sleeping well. Sun Ki tells him, “The way I see it, it was really hard on her too. She’s young. And don’t you think she was afraid things would end up like this?”
Han Gyul goes to see his cousin. At first, the mood is strained, as Han Sung asks Han Gyul to forgive him for having feelings for Eun Chan: “If you really don’t want me to see her anymore, I won’t. I’ll do my best so that we don’t even happen to meet by chance.”
Han Gyul apologizes for hitting him, for overreacting to learning the truth about Eun Chan, and also for passing off his feelings for Yu Ju as mere friendship. He invites Han Sung to hit him if it’ll make him feel better.
Han Sung informs him of Yu Ju’s departure: “But don’t worry too much about us. Yu Ju and I have ten years of history. There’s something between us that you wouldn’t even be able to imagine. We won’t just end like this.”
Han Gyul: “Yu Ju really loves you. She’ll come back to you. It was a really good thing it was you that she loved. If it were anyone else, I’d have stolen her away. I held back because it was you. I like you a whole lot more than you think I do, you know.”
(Aww for brotherly love! These cockles, they are warmed.)
(Somebody needs to give the writer a raise, because I love this next sequence like you wouldn’t believe. I love it so much it makes me sad I didn’t write it.)
That night, Han Gyul goes to Eun Chan’s home, looking up at her window. After staying there for a while, he drives away.
At the same time, Eun Chan waits outside Han Gyul’s apartment. It’s getting late, so she starts wheeling her bicycle away, unaware that her burlap sack is leaking chestnuts.
When Han Gyul arrives home, he finds the chesnuts on the ground, leading him like a trail of breadcrumbs. He follows the trail, and starts to pick them up, just as Eun Chan discovers the torn bag and starts collecting the chestnuts from her end.
And thus they meet in the middle.
Sitting side by side on a park bench, they remain silent for a while as they try to decide how to handle this. But Han Gyul’s anger has been slowly subsiding over the course of the episode, and he tells her to come to work tomorrow.
“I’m still angry, I still feel resentful and I can’t completely understand… And so, I asked myself if I could live without Go Eun Chan. Could I separate from her like this? And it turns out I can’t.”
He sees her tearing up and chides her for crying so much: “From now on, you’d better only cry in front of me. Don’t you dare cry like this in front of other men, or you’re dead.” He reaches over and wipes the tears from her eyes.
Eun Chan apologizes again:
“When we played around, when I acted as your dongsaeng, that must’ve been so awful for you. I only tried to keep myself from being hurt, and looked for a place to run away. I didn’t understand how you felt when you made me those toys, how much you were hurting. When you said let’s go as far as we could, I was just happy, and didn’t even think of your struggles. I’m sorry.”
Han Gyul apologizes too:
“When I kissed you at the cafe and said it meant nothing, I did that to hurt you. It was because I was angry — but I absolutely didn’t mean it. I’m immature for not thinking of how hard it was on you. I’m sorry. I apologize. Forgive me.”
Eun Chan tells him it was her mistake from the start, so it’s okay.
Han Gyul rests his head on her shoulder, saying:
“Go Eun Chan… I’m glad you’re a girl.”
Eun Chan quickly turns her head to kiss him, and they stay like that, together in silence.
The next day, Eun Chan’s back at the cafe, and Ha Rim, for all his bluster and aggravation, is genuinely happy to see her back. When Han Gyul arrives, they all watch with bated breath, not quite sure of the situation.
Han Gyul pretends to ignore Eun Chan, although he steals looks at her while the others are too busy speculating over the status of the relationship. They ask Eun Chan if something happened the night before to cause the change, and with a shy smile, she nods. The Princes whoop in glee.
They accost her for details, and Ha Rim jokes that they should use her phone to send Han Gyul lovey-dovey text messages. Ha Rim says they don’t even need her phone since they can send it with his, and starts typing a message. Eun Chan stops them — and hands over her phone: “Send it with mine.”
The Princes watch Han Gyul receive the message, which reads: “Thank you ♥.” He smiles (and the Princes are thrilled).
After going on their coffee bean deliveries, Han Gyul and Eun Chan enjoy a walk through the park, and Han Gyul is adorably playful. As he walks hand in hand with Eun Chan down the street, he excitedly turns to strangers to tell them, “She’s a girl. She’s a girl. A girl!”
Han Gyul: “See, you should’ve told the truth from the start, so we could’ve held hands like this.”
Eun Chan: “I really didn’t know you liked me.”
Han Gyul: “Are you kidding me? I even went to the hospital because of you. Are you a dummy?”
Eun Chan: “Hospital? I thought you just saw me as a cute younger brother. And I had nothing to assure me you’d like a girl like me.”
She tells him when she first saw him, she thought he was incredibly good-looking. He’s pleased to hear it, until she clarifies that their first meeting wasn’t at the purse-snatching, but when she delivered food to his apartment. Han Gyul exhibits a belated sense of modesty.
Han Sung finds out about Yu Ju not going to New York from DK: “I thought work was the most important thing to her, but it seems there’s something you have that’s more important.”
Worried, Han Sung tells Han Gyul that he hasn’t been able to locate her. Far from being angry, Han Sung realizes he didn’t know as much about her as he should have: “I don’t know where her mother’s house is, or have phone numbers of her close friends.”
Later that night, Eun Chan and Han Gyul talk on the phone, and he wonders why she’s so interested in Han Sung’s business. He tells her Han Sung had liked her — and she, remembering Han Sung’s caution, pretends not to know: “No, that can’t be.” He asks if she’d had feelings for him, and she admits that at first, she did like Han Sung, but then she started liking Han Gyul more.
Han Gyul pretends to be miffed, asking why she picked him over his cousin, who’s nicer and warmer: “Be honest. You like both of us, right?” Eun Chan takes his teasing for real and insists, “Han Sung is just a nice ajusshi, and you — I don’t really know the reason, but I just… like you.”
Han Gyul enjoys her reaction while carrying on his mock indignation, telling her he’s still upset: “My anger just won’t go away.” Left with nothing else to say, Eun Chan says, almost defiantly: “I love you. I love you! I really love you!”
That catches Han Gyul totally off guard, and in an instant, he goes from playfully happy to completely stunned. His legs give out and he sinks down on the couch, catching his breath. (The song is “Coffee Is” by Cloud Cuckoo Land”.)
He covers, accusing her (in bluster) of playing with words and being a smooth talker:
“Hey, you jerk! You could’ve said so openly, comfortably, and we could’ve been insanely happy together. Why didn’t you tell me, and put me through all that suffering? Bad Go Eun Chan! You punk!”
Eun Chan smiles in relief, and then he tells her sternly, gruffly:
“Listen to me carefully. I love you more.”
Both are stunned at their mutual admissions — you can almost feel their visceral reactions to their words — and then, overcome with giddy happiness. Eun Chan jumps around her room, yelling, “He says he loves me! He loves me!”
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