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68

My Secret Hotel: Episode 12

It’s got to be asked: With a week to play with, does Hae-young have a plan, or is his grand plan to wing it? I sincerely hope he’s got more game than he’s shown so far, because in every previous encounter, he’s come off worse even though the chances are always tipped in his favor.

Then again, maybe it’s that very advantage that ends up being his biggest disadvantage, because what he has to do is regain Sang-hyo’s trust, which is so much harder the second time around than the first.

EPISODE 12 RECAP

“That’s why I was going to marry Soo-ah.” In desperation, Hae-young explains to Sang-hyo’s back how his dad refused to get surgery until he married, and if his parents find out the marriage is a sham, the shock might really finish him.

Sang-hyo keeps walking, but Hae-young’s last entreaty makes her stop: She’s going to give in. She confirms that it’s only for one week.

Hae-young is so overjoyed that he sweeps her up in a bear-hug, which she tries to wriggle out of. He lets go only to plant a kiss on her forehead and she asks what the hell he’s doing. Hae-young: “I’m kissing my wife.” Hee.

He hurries her inside to pack, with Sang-hyo dragging her feet and protesting all the way. She reluctantly calls Kyung-hee to let her know she’s taking the day off work, but is affronted to find out that the reason is to clean Hae-young’s house. He says she can’t look like a stranger in “their” home, so she needs to familiarize herself with it — where the bathroom is, where the rice cooker is—

And now she’s afraid she’ll even have to cook, and starts rapidly dialing again, but Hae-young stops her: They have to go fix the house up to look like they’re newlyweds — words which leave Sang-hyo whimpering.

He perches on the edge of her bed as she packs. He nonchalantly asks if Sung-gyum ever slept over, but quickly plays it off: “Never mind if he didn’t.” She scoffs at his assumption, and suggestively asks if he thinks Sung-gyum could leave a woman like her alone.

He begins to jabber, but she cuts him off: Unlike him, Sung-gyum is a gentleman. Hae-young asks if that means he’s a beast, but she counters, reminding him of his medicinal needs when it comes to beasting. Hahaha.

To prove himself, he backs her into the closet, while she tries to ward him off with a hair dryer, and he gets the last laugh. Still got it, eh?

On the drive to Hae-young’s house, Sung-gyum’s earlier words echo in her head — couldn’t she think of him? She tells Hae-young she’s worried about how to explain it to her boyfriend, and he’s upset that she keeps mentioning Sung-gyum in front of him. They bicker, but also both smile to themselves, enjoying it.

Elsewhere, Hae-young’s parents discuss him. OH. Is that how it is? We see that he called them begging them to delay their departure by a week and stay with him: “My life depends on it.” He privately vows to win Sang-hyo back within that time, no matter what.

Sung-gyum looks for Sang-hyo in her office and finds out she took the day off. On his way back, Eun-joo catches sight of him and hides behind a pillar to avoid him. But when he confronts her, she can’t stop a tear from slipping out, and he asks if they can talk.

In his office, he tells her he liked the confident Eun-joo, who was attractive. Since he doesn’t want to be uncomfortable with her, can’t they be friends?

She thanks him for his words, and promises to settle her feelings and wish them well — and abruptly changes tone with an eyeroll: “Did you think I would say that?” She asks what woman stays “friends” with a man she likes, and rightly points out he selfishly wants to ensure his own comfort, but she has no intention of playing along. Sang-hyo is Hae-young’s bride, and she will be his. And, she yells at him, when that time comes, she’ll pay him back. Oh, I love her.

Hae-young has a giant wedding portrait installed in his apartment. He keeps flip-flopping about where to hang it — first one wall, then another — until Sang-hyo erupts that they should just hang it wherever, and he immediately agrees.

She interrupts his rocking-chair reverie in front of the portrait with the observation that his place might look nice at a glance, but it’s covered in dust. And that’s why he wishes she’d stay there for good. O rly, that’s your best line? Sang-hyo makes a face of disdain at him, too.

She heads into his bedroom and Hae-young trails behind her. She makes herself clear: Although they’ll have to share the room because his parents will be there, she’ll have the bed and he can take the floor — and if he so much as touches her, she’s gone.

She’s so grossed out by the bed she thinks he shared with Soo-ah that she gets the whole mattress sanitized, which I didn’t even know you could do.

The sanitizing truck operator thinks they’re a couple, and Hae-young slings an arm around his wife and says they’ll have a baby soon, while she smiles daggers at him and asks if there’s a way to get rid of an 180cm-long tick. Haha.

Just then, Sung-gyum calls and she busts out her best aegyo. But she’s alarmed that he wants to come over for dinner and tells him not tonight. He jokes that she’d better not be having a secret affair.

After he hangs up, she plays a joke on Hae-young by pretending her call is still ongoing. She giggles and coos “I love you, too” into the phone, when he grabs it from her and begins a long tirade against Sung-gyum to stop talking inappropriately to his wife, but doesn’t realize nobody’s there. She takes the phone back and reminds him she’s doing him a favor, not the other way around, so leave her man alone. It rattles him that she says “my Sung-gyum.”

Detective Kim waits outside Sung-gyum’s office because Simon won’t let him inside. He examines the PA, recalling Slimy’s words about how he has the look of a murderer, when Sung-gyum arrives.

Kim asks him bluntly this time: Did he kill Young-mi? Sung-gyum remains unruffled, and they engage in a stare-off. Meanwhile, Team Leader Cha reports to GM Lee that the detective is meeting with Sung-gyum. Cha thinks it was true after all that Young-mi approached Sung-gyum.

Hae-young calls in at the firm to tell Shi-chan he’s spending the day with Sang-hyo. Shi-chan tells him they’ll work hard even if the boss isn’t there, but as soon as he hangs up, he lets all the workers clear off early.

Jung-eun comes to the empty office but is unhappy to hear Hae-young is with Sang-hyo — didn’t they break up? Shi-chan tells her there are other cool men apart from Hae-young, to which she blankly replies, “Who? Where?” He whispers into her ear, “Me!” before running away. Aww! All the ships are lining up. But it’s totally lost on her.

Sang-hyo and Hae-young are busy cooking; he inexpertly chops vegetables while she burns everything. I… don’t think either of these two has any idea how to cook. Hae-young finds her efforts entertaining while she gets increasingly stressed out, and burns herself. Now concerned, he whisks her away, while she worries that his parents will get there before they’re ready.

Speaking of: Outside the door, the elders have arrived and overhear the anxious argument the couple have about finishing “it” before they get there. Hilariously misunderstanding it for the newlyweds enjoying a quickie, the parents quietly retreat for a bit.

Hae-young treats her burn, and Sang-hyo is touched by his care, which again brings Sung-gyum’s words back to her mind. For a change, instead of snapping at Hae-young, she softly tells him she’s fine, now.

Sung-gyum gets a call from Soo-ah’s father to have dinner in the hotel restaurant. When he arrives, Soo-ah’s there alone at a table set for two. She makes the excuse that her dad couldn’t make it. Delightfully transparent, she tells him not to think she engineered this situation to get close to him or anything.

Eun-joo spots them and rescues him from the almost-date by pretending they had previous plans. But since they’re all there, she invites Soo-ah to join them, much to the latter’s dismay.

A game of one-upmanship ensues as both ladies try to get Sung-gyum to side with their menu choices, but he frustrates them by making his own orders. With the tension over steaks and wine, he abstains from salad. Because who wants to get into a tug of war between two women?

The newlyweds have laid out a spread for his parents, and Hae-young says she made a lot of effort for them. He fusses over her injured hand, which turns into a fight of smiles and hand-holding (read: bared teeth and fist-clenches), until he hooks an arm around her and asks his father to accept her into their family.

The food doesn’t look too bad… until they taste it. Mom notices the burnt undersides of the fish and side dishes, while dad struggles with the tough meat. Mortified, Sang-hyo apologizes, but Mom sweetly says that it’s nothing and everyone’s first time can be hit-or-miss, and both parents do their best to soldier through without hurting Sang-hyo’s feelings.

The awkward threesome at the hotel restaurant finish and Soo-ah pretends to be dizzy from her wine so she can’t drive. She wants Sung-gyum to take her home, but Eun-joo’s already got her sorted with a substitute driver: Outmaneuvered, she reluctantly leaves.

Sung-gyum thanks Eun-joo for her intervention and invites her for a drink, just the two of them. Eun-joo gushes thanks and asks where they’ll go — and again drops the façade abruptly with the same words: “Did you think I would say that?”

She gives him a strong dressing-down and says what we’re all thinking: If he’s not interested in her, why is he stringing her along? He accepts the criticism without a word, and she says she’s not in the mood for a drink tonight. After she goes, he remarks to himself that he almost felt bad.

In Casa Hae-young, his parents notice him gazing at Sang-hyo, and tell him to go be with her. As she cuts fruit, he comes up behind her with a backhug. Is that a good idea when she has a knife in her hand? Mom and Dad think they are enjoying a couple-moment, so they quietly creep away to leave the kids alone.

Still holding her, Hae-young tells her how happy he is that she’s with him. Sung-gyum’s words come back to her again, and she snaps out of it: “Won’t you let go?” she demands. “I won’t let go,” he replies. She stamps on his foot, which does the job, and points out she’s holding a knife.

Sang-hyo falls into Hae-young’s bed, exhausted: one day down. She sends him to his spot on the floor, where he gazes up at her. He earnestly thanks her for treating his parents well, and for staying.

She settles in, but tells him she won’t sleep until he does. He tells her she needn’t worry about him trying anything: He’s not that wicked. He turns over to face away from her.

It’s her turn to watch him. She remembers another time, seven years ago, when she pestered him to sleep facing her, but he didn’t want to because he had an early morning. If he were to look at her, all his chances of sleep would disappear…

In the present, Hae-young smiles at the same memory and turns over again to sneak a look at Sang-hyo. He’s surprised to find her wide awake, looking down at him. She tells him she can’t sleep, and he asks if he should help her. The air is so thick with their history, I don’t know how they’re breathing.

Another flashback takes us to a different night, when she couldn’t fall asleep. He took her into his arms and sang her a lullaby until she did. She turns down his offer now, and this time, she turns over to face away from him.

Over a late-night meal with his partner, Detective Kim rehashes his interview with Sung-gyum. What did he talk about with Young-mi? Sung-gyum revealed the first note she had sent him with the information that his father was murdered — although, he tells Kim, she didn’t tell him who she thought the killer was.

As for the last time he spoke to her, it was about her price for handing over the evidence that would reveal his father’s killer. Since he was leaving for his business trip, he sent Simon back to meet her, but she never showed up for the appointment.

Detective Lee asks why he can’t just arrest both men, and his boss points out the lack of any evidence that Simon is connected to the case, and Sung-gyum’s airtight alibi.

In his suite, Sung-gyum dithers over whether to call Sang-hyo or not. When he finally does, there’s no answer. She’s asleep — and being watched over by Hae-young. He climbs onto the bed to remove the phone, and when he sees it’s Sung-gyum, he cancels the call with some pique.

Sung-gyum sends her a text insead: “Sang-hyo, I missed you a lot all day.” Hae-young reads it and isn’t happy… but then that Grinchy evil smile comes over him and he gets tapping back.

It’s adorable how excited Sung-gyum is that she replies, but he’s baffled by the message: “Shut up and hit the sack.”

Hae-young silently cracks up. Mischief managed, he tucks her phone back under her pillow and starts taking couple-selcas with his own while she still sleeps.

Morning finds them cuddled up together on a single pillow, and she nestles in closer. But when she stirs awake and sees him, she screams and catapults him straight onto the floor.

A little later, she emerges to find Mom has already made breakfast. She apologizes but Mom says it’s okay and invites her to taste the delicious soup. Hae-young looks on, enjoying the warm vignette of his mother doting on his wife.

Sung-gyum waits outside Sang-hyo’s apartment to take her to work, but she’s busy at Hae-young’s house, taking her leave of the elders. Hae-young tells her to hurry home and not dally with random guys.

Mom suddenly remembers the wedding present she got them, and sends her son to fetch her bag. Sang-hyo hears the word cha (tea) and lists every tea she can think of, and says she definitely likes all of them. Mom chuckles and tells her it’s not that kind of cha. Hae-young returns with the bag and Mom now hands over a set of car keys: It’s that cha (car).

Sang-hyo’s mind is a little blown that their wedding gift is a whole car. Hae-young’s not too happy about it: If she has her own wheels, that means he can’t chauffeur her around anymore. But she can’t accept the gift, since the marriage isn’t real, and he immediately counters that they can make it real. But for now, he delivers the keys into her hand, and urges her not to disappoint his parents, who are watching. She relents, and the couple say goodbye and leave together.

Mom and Dad are pleased that Hae-young is so happy. In a flashback to the wedding day, Hae-young begs his shocked parents to trust him — he won’t disappoint them again. He kneels in front of them and confesses he sincerely loves Sang-hyo — she’s the only woman he’s ever loved, and he never wants to lose her again.

Sang-hyo wants to know why he’s in her car and not his own. Hae-young expresses doubt in her driving skills, which indeed prove to be erratic. He holds on tight and she’s so busy concentrating that she misses Sung-gyum’s call. He’s left wondering if she went to work early.

The couple make it to the hotel in one piece and she returns the key to him because she doesn’t want talk, plus he needs to get to work himself. He promises to pick her up later but she tells him not to come back, ever. They bicker again and it’s cute… until Sung-gyum pulls up with a grim face.

The men exchange barbs and Sung-gyum asks her why they’re coming to work together: Is something going on? She denies it but hangs her head and Hae-young asks if being with him is some kind of crime. She urges him to leave, and Sung-gyum tells him to butt out, too. Sung-gyum decides he and Sang-hyo’ll leave since he won’t, and he pulls her along by the wrist.

Not about to be robbed, Hae-young grabs the other wrist, and she is jerked between the two boys in a ragdoll tug-of-war as each tells the other to let go. Hae-young: “She’s my wife.” Sung-gyum: “She’s my girlfriend.” Ugh.

She breaks free of both of them and the boys are now spoiling for a fight because they’re idiots. Sang-hyo pushes Hae-young away from the fight but he persists, so she tries Sung-gyum instead. His blood is up though and the boys go for each other. Sang-hyo inserts herself between them but they push her out — desperate, she seizes Sung-gyum in a tight embrace and begs him not to fight.

Hae-young calls her name, but she’s fixed only on Sung-gyum. He grabs her wrist to break the hug, spinning her towards him, and ends up in a tense face-off with Sung-gyum.

COMMENTS

Ugh. Ugh ugh ugh. UGH.

The Sang-hyo sandwich. Sigh. Such a big backwards step. I won’t waste words on it, because we all know what’s wrong with it.

I’ve stopped pretending the mystery matters this episode. The only mystery here is, how does Hae-young manage to mess up every ribbon-wrapped opportunity to change her mind? Coasting on past successes, he’s still not taking my advice: CHANGE. Do something different! Do EVERYTHING different. I’ve shipped you dammit and my advice is good, TAKE IT argh ldkjgldkgjl.

Why Sang-hyo agreed to Hae-young’s ruse is a good question, because the answer tells you a lot about what’s in her head — her inability to turn her back on him, even though she has no obligation to help him, even though common sense screams she shouldn’t. Rather than simple goodwill, it’s clear she reacted to Hae-young’s personal distress, and not his dad’s condition.

It both is and isn’t surprising that the situation was deliberately contrived: the former because his pain lent truth to his story (probably because his pain is the story), and the latter because of course the prankster would be up to something. The worry is that he’s only thought up to the point of getting her into his house, but doesn’t have a game-plan for the rest, which is my impression from this episode. I get a feeling this is characteristic about his general approach to life — he doesn’t think about long-term outcomes and consequences. In other words, he goes for winning the battle rather than winning the war, which is the opposite of Sung-gyum.

There’s no point getting into the ethics of his misleading her (and a little misleading isn’t necessarily bad for the parties involved), but I won’t fault him for trying: He needs to do this much. He may be childish and wrong and immature, but you can’t argue with the profound depths of his pain. It’s when he dwells on it that makes him so grave and so adult — almost like childishness is a refuge from the big, great hurt awaiting him if he looks at it head on.

I haven’t decided what I think about his hugs. I hesitate to use the words “forced” and “struggle” because it suggests violence or violation, and I think Hae-young’s actions don’t go over the line. There’s no power-play in it — it’s pure affection and actually seems to be Hae-young at his most innocent. He’s aware of the difference, too, given his reassurance to Sang-hyo about not trying anything on her in the night, and also, when he does use contact to “control” her, although that is part of the bigger dynamic of his back-and-forth with Sang-hyo, where she gives as good as she gets, and therefore isn’t worrying.

On the other hand, isn’t Eun-joo just the bees’ knees? She’s blazingly direct and doesn’t let Sung-gyum get away with a thing. The problem for the women with him is that his authority position means they have to interact with him as a superior before as a person. Eun-joo actively removes that barrier and levels the field when she discards his title and adopts his name — something Sang-hyo hasn’t done. Like Sang-hyo, she’s also excellent at taking back power, but her style is much more boisterous, which suits Sung-gyum’s phlegmatic personality better. Although Sang-hyo was forward with him to start with, she’s been holding back more and more.

It’s difficult to say whether Sang-hyo has been giving the boys mixed signals: I think matters are muddied because she’s honestly confused. She hasn’t ever welcomed any of Hae-young’s attentions, although she occasionally finds herself lulled into momentary acceptances, so I don’t think she’s being ambiguous. In fact, the strength of her resolve is striking, considering just how all-over-her Hae-young is, and how hard it is with so much unresolved history not to fall back into old habits: I could map every moment of when she’s leaning towards and pulling herself back from him. Because she’s struggling, I’m unwilling to call that capricious inconsistency: just human.

Sang-hyo’s flashback of their bedtime conversation — her many questions and his easy answers — show they clearly had no problem communicating then. But as problems become more complex, so does the way you need to communicate, and they broke up before they learned how to weather it. This is their basic and critical problem right now: how to talk to each other about things that matter. If they can’t figure it out, they won’t have a future.

Sung-gyum is odd. After having dinner with two women who are interested in him who aren’t his girlfriend, and leading on at least one of them, I’m not sure that he can claim any high ground against Sang-hyo. Eun-joo lays the blame for his disingenuity squarely on him, and I think she’s right. Dating Sang-hyo because he likes her hasn’t made him a different person — although maybe he should be. Then again…playing house with your ex when you have a boyfriend is probably a no-no, as is having a boyfriend when you’re married to someone else. So maybe none of them are really on a winning side.

There is very little to add to the investigation round-up: Even though Sung-gyum came clean with the note, it’s obvious he’s holding back much more. Conclusion: He may be the murderer — or he may not. If he is, I’m sad for Eun-joo.

I came close to losing my patience with the triangle of nincompoops this week. It’s gotten to a point with this episode where it’s not enough to have isolated funny or heartfelt moments. We need some faster plot movement and more overall coherence in the story. I don’t feel like four episodes are enough for Sang-hyo to have a believable change of heart, unless it turns out Sung-gyum is a murderous murderer and sends her crying to the nearest available muppet. Of course, it could be fine, but I don’t want to be rushed into it, and the time feels short.

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Sang -hyo is just wishy-washy. If she still has feelings for Hae-young but feeling sore that he left her seven years ago, what is wrong with opening her mouth and asking him for an explanation? It's not as if they are not on speaking terms- she even agreed to 'marry' him and now move in with him to convince his parents that they are indeed married.

Either she is completely dumb or has only half a brain, there is absolutely no logical reason for her behavior. If she really wanted to move on, not look back, a dumb reason such as saving the reputation of the hotel just doesn't cut it. If she is going to continue dating Sang- Gyum, surely that would create a greater scandal for the hotel in the end when the media gets hold of the story!

All round dumb.

I hope the writer moves on faster and let the real reason why the break up occurred be made known to the parties concerned. Watching the two men fighting over Sang-hyo is sure wearing thin. Or should it just be named 'Secret' - the hotel seems to be an after thought!

Who really cares or remembers about the numerous murders including Sang-Gyum's back story.

I am just watching for Taltal! ?

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Speaking of her dating Sung-gyum, I've been wondering about why they would be doing so in such a public way myself. If she married her ex to save the hotel's wedding reputation, then why wouldn't she tell Sung-gyum that they would have to put off dating for a few months. Once the "divorced within 3 months" issue had disappeared, then she could quietly begin dating. But instead, he not only announces it to the hotel staff, but sings songs to her in public bars IN FRONT OF HER HUSBAND! How do they expect the public not to catch wind of this scandal? And when the media outs their relationship, won't this pretty much ruin the hotel's reputation as well? I don't understand why they couldn't either hold off on dating or do so secretly. After all, that IS the name of the hotel and the theme of the series!

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exactly like why did they even bother with the fake marriage in the first place as it's literally served no long term purpose

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Bur of course, in spite of my annoyance with the lack of logic, we know that she went through the marriage because deep down, she actually wanted to marry him again. Even though it will take her another few episodes to admit it, that's why she really remarried her first husband - because she still loves him.

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IAAAAAA my main gripe with this drama is it's clearly divided itself into two separate dramas, one romcom thats very typical and one very lacklustre mystery drama. It's not even trying to bridge the two together and that makes it disappointing because the mystery suffers completely and the romance isn't unique enough to carry the story. Sang-hyo is a hugely disappointing character, at the start she seemed interesting and it was nice to see a woman in a position of power but my god her romantic choices have been an absolute mess none of them make any sense. If I was her I would break up with both of them and go on a road trip with Eun-joo who could teach her a thing or two about dressing down men effectively. This episode i was actually wishing Eun-joo was the lead because her personality is much more interesting now that she's stopped chasing the men.

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I want SG to be the murderer. That'd be mighty interesting.

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it could be interesting but i doesn't see strong reason for him to be killer, except that person kill his father, i don't see any reason for him to kill the girl
Nam gong min is the cast that i like in this drama but i could accept if he turn to be dark charracter, it's interesting twist

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Agreed! And it would add some humor to have the subordinate detective be right when he's been mocked for thinking SG was the killer.

My thought is that SG's mother killed his father (necklace, remember?) - possibly because he caught her having an affair with the GM. Then Hwang found the necklace and sussed it out, and tried to blackmail SG, who killed him.

And SG is looking awfully murderous in this episode. Just sayin'.

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I think that we are supposed to assume that the killer is a woman because of the necklace, but Sung-gyum's mother couldn't have killed Young-mi or Hwang because she wasn't even in the country. I don't see any other woman with a motive to kill any of them, so I think that the necklace is either a red herring, or is related to someone involved with the murderer, but is not the murderer herself. I am still thinking that the murderer is the only remaining original guy on the wedding planning team (forgot his name) because he keeps acting mysteriously, but he couldn't have killed Sung-gyum's father, so I have just stopped guessing!

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Nop that guy is the thief he doubt the bodyguard but since the bodyguard caught him he doesn't want to saw anything

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the owner of the necklace is a clue related to sunggyums fathers murder, not hwang's or young mi's.

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I like NGM too. That's why I want him to be the murderer. Or else he's just the 2nd lead who doesn't get the girl, which makes his role kinda sad and boring.

I'm sure the writer can find ways to give him the motivation to kill. They can always reveal a crucial tidbit that they've so far concealed.

The rest of the show is a farce-rom com, so the sillier the better.

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I like NGM too. That’s why I want him to be the murderer. Or else he’s just the 2nd lead who doesn’t get the girl, which makes his role kinda sad and boring.

Exactly! I'm in total agreement with this.

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I'm game for that. I wouldn't mind having NGM be a/the killer as long as they give him substantial motive and it propels the plot. It would certainly add interest to his growing portfolio. He can carry off crazy. (Have you seen his portrayal of Maru/Joon Ha in "Can you hear my heart" whenever he realizes his mother betrayed him? *shudders at the memory* Ah…yes. He can definitely do believable crazy eyes.)

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At this point I'm rooting for Sang Hyo to have a multiple personality and be the killer. Now THAT would be interesting! But I would settle for SG to be the killer and for Sang Hyo to dump Hae Young and then become general manager of the hotel.

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Hae-young really needs to step up his game

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The sillier this show gets the better I like it.

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Not sure HaeYoung needs to change...what separated them before was geography (specifically his job in New York) so their relationship, love etc. was not the issue and I think his child-like qualities and pranks are too sweet!

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Actually now that I think about it, HaeYoung has changed...he's already said he won't let her go again, so I take that to mean if faced with the same conflict he'd leave his job for her. Really, the person that needs to change is SangHyo - it's her turn to learn that love trumps career!

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Yep, I agree that it's her turn now.

She justs needs to regain her trust in Hae Young, and stop being confused by Sung Gyum. In four episodes.

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I also think the same as you. Sang hyo needs to realise that she's the one that need to change now. Maybe hae young should face the same situation again in a different way so that he can show to sang hyo that he is changed. Then sang hyo has to change since hae young is willing to sacrifice for her. Just my thought. :D

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they also fought about her job and had communication issues in general tbh. he wanted her to quit and go to NY with him, she didn't want to.. but his work was more important to him than she was. and srsly why the heck did he never get in touch with her after he left qithout a word? he worked in NY, sure, but even 7 years ago NY had telephones and the internet. the communication isnt all his fault because obviously its a two way street, but saying it was only geography and nothing else doesn't accurately portray their relationship

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Not saying I disagree, I just see those issues as systemic of the bigger issue being his job in New York...

They had tried to talk it out and were at an impasse - also I don't believe he thought her job was less important, he just made the point that there are hotels in NY too and that she could work there just as easily while he, being based in NY, was not able to live with her in Vegas.

I was okay with how he left her with the decision, like I mentioned, they had discussed it and he had to leave...he allowed her to make the decision for herself (leaving the ticket and address for her). I would have gone with him but that's just me :)

I'm sure the communication issue would have come up sooner or later, example: when they had kids or another such life-altering event, but that is probably true of many relationships - we can always improve, right?

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I just watched the latest 4 episodes in a row, so I'm not sure if I'm mixing the events up...

My advice for LITERALLY everyone would be: USE YOUR WORDS. I get it, it is a murder mystery and keeping secrets is to be expected, but every second reaction by SH is "Eh? What is going on? What have you just said? *spaced out*" That is just plain annoying.

The detective seems to be the only competent person around there - but where are the results? With SG acting more and more shifty in his backflashes (hehehe) and nobody discrediting the "evidence" against him - but at the same time with another 4 episodes to go - I'm gonna call that he is NOT our murderer. Dammit, it would have been a nice resolve for SH and also a motivation to get back together with HY.

I like that their break-up was kind of their own fault (as opposed to some big Drama-tic misunderstanding), and they have to acknowledge that they both need to sort their priorities, those poopoo-heads. (Wait! Didn't the last few divorced-couples-get-back-together-dramas have some parent die to bring them back together ... watch out, Pops!)

The mystery part seems random - like: the thief is going to be *random pick from not yet dead people* that guy. Great. Though I didn't fathom that connection between him and Mr Security. At least everyone is suspicious of everyone. :D That makes for some great guessing.

As for the comedy I really like HYs co-workers misunderstanding him as impotent, gay or various other things, they work themselfves up so much! Haha.

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Re the comedy: yes, it just hilariously underlines that Hae Young's Big Problem is miscommunication with the people around him (rather than the Other Problems)!

Never thought I'd say this, but I found myself liking Jung Eun the teeeensiest little bit this episode - and if she were to end up with Si-chan, I'd root for 'em.

I could almost relate (for a nanosecond) when she said, "well, honey, I'd love to find a better guy than Hae Young (so I don't have to spend my life stalking him), but tell me where I could possibly find a guy like that?" (well, not quite in those words)

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Re: their breakup

I'm still confused about their break up. Did HY really just abandon her? To me he didn't. He went to New York for work and left her a ticket. It's not like she didn't know where he was.

Was him leaving the ticket his way of saying, I'm leaving you and if you want to be with me you can come here too? I didn't take it that way initially so I was totally confused as to why she reacted the way she did and sat in the same spot for days on end.

Why didn't one of them just call the other? So confusing. I'm hoping there's more of an explanation of the breakup to come.

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Yeah, I guess the problem was that they got married before they have sorted out their big issue that both put their careers before anything else.

So when HY left (without saying a word - which made it easier for him but incomprehensible to her, I guess) SH probably got really mad about him belittling her job (which she would have to give up if she were to go to NY to be with him). And then stupid pride set in and she didn't go. Instead, she ripped their picture in shreds and moved house (?). So when he realized that she wouldn't come to NY and came back for her (because LOVE), he found an empty apartment. GAME OVER.

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the ticket couldve said that, but idk. he knew she didnt want to leave her job and move to new york so one day he disappears and just leaves an address and a plane ticket? to me, he was giving her an ultimatum, idk.

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I'm at the point where I'm shrieking at the screen for them to just talk to each other, dammit!

They need to be honest about their feelings and their history and their part in the giant cock-up of their short marriage, and so far, neither of them has done so. Maybe if they did, they could move on from the place they've been emotionally stuck in for seven years.

I'm still kind of confused about the whole marriage thing - here in the states, part of the post-ceremony stuff is the officiant signing the marriage license, which is the part at which you are legally married (except in states with 'common-law marriage' laws, which accept public vows - or really, even just saying that you're married as legal proof of marriage.)

So...how does Korea handle legal marriage? Could Hae Young have registered the marriage based on witness signatures? Would the license be signed at the wedding site? Is it a separate thing entirely? Every time Hae Young mentions "my wife", I get distracted by thinking about all this stuff.

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Yeo Eun Joo - you go, girl!!! She was definitely the highlight of this episode.

Hae Young was sweet when he was praising Sang Hyo's non-existent cooking skills, and yes, their memories were definitely still there, and definitely not past tense - but taking photos while she's sleeping was bordering on creepy for me (even if she's technically his wife).

I'm wondering how much the change of writer from Ep 4 onwards has affected the character and plot development? Was there a clearly defined murderer/mastermind from the beginning, I wonder?

On the music: it just occurred to me, when I was listening to the upbeat jazzy instrumental music, that it reminds me of Me Too, Flower! Which is in no way a bad thing! I wonder who the music director is?

Also like that they played Carmen during Soo Ah's spectacularly brief seduction of Sung Gyum during dinner.

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Since I found out about this song in "Heartstrings" (awesome version, btw), I've been hearing it in almost every drama. :D Seems to be the go-to-backgroundmusic! lol

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haha, yes, the fusion version with the gayageum rocked!

(I liked their "battle of the bands" too, and was always sorry we never got to see the end of Wind Flower's piece!)

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Hahahahahah to this recap was soooooo freaking funny

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I gave up on this drama few eps ago, I did try to watch this episode and it was mind numbing.
May be because I can't stop comparing with another drama about exes: The Discovery of Romance. Same premise, so much better execution!

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MSH and DOR shows are completely different genres in spite of he fact that they are both "romantic comedies" -- the latter is going for realism, the former for madcap comedy. There's no real basis for comparison here even if both feature love triangles.

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They are different shows, nobody is arguing about that. But still they have the same starting point: exes who meet again after certain amount of years and have lingering feelings about each other. I would watch My Secret Hotel if they were really doing the madcap comedy. I'm watching Surplus Princes exactly for that.
On the other hand MSH has all of his leads act stupid: they never actually say to each what/why they feel, never ask any questions or use they brains to solve problems and go along with stupidest ideas without thinking them through.
I really wanted to like that show, but they worked on my last nerve in ep 12.

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Thank you, Saya, for eloquently putting into words all my feels and gripes about this show and its characters.

4 more episodes to go, show! Come on!

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I have a LOT of respect and appreciation for the ACTOR that is playing the part of HaeYoung. That being said, the CHARACTER that is HaeYoung is so beyond what marks a bad relationship, I find myself trying desperately to understand why ANYONE would root for him to be with his ex-wife (Sang-Hyo). Yes, the ACTOR playing the role is beautiful, has a lovely deep voice and can set a woman's heart a'flutter. HaeYoung, the CHARACTER, however would send a REAL woman running. Or, at least, should.

Whenever he embarrassed Sang-hyo in front of his parents, I (as an adult woman that has been put in similar situations where you did not want to hurt someone, so you sacrificed your OWN dignity and time and effort to help them) felt SO sorry for her character. In the meantime, I suppose that we were supposed to laugh, chuckle and feel the arrows of "cuteness" that HaeYoung was offering her… instead of any real help. Because, that is how this drama rolls.

The tantamount moment of frustration at how this drama seems to WANT us to root and cheer for HaeYoung's baffling and beyond offensive behavior, however, came whenever she dropped exhausted into bed after attempting to "save" him from being honest with his parents (or anyone, for that matter). I could not understand why "funny" or "silly" music was playing as he not only "mischievously" RESPONDED to a text to her CURRENT partner, he PHYSICALLY CLIMBED INTO BED WITH HER after she had made it VERY clear that it was against her desires. Then… he took pictures of them "in bed together." Wow. What. A. Keeper. Oh, Korea. Korea. Korea. I just. I just don't have the words at how wrong this scene was.

Again, I love the actors and the characters and mystery have kept me…entertained. I am just shaking my head that the "wrist grabbing" (by both male leads), woman "claiming", lying to your FAMILY, and even crossing the line to "do what is best for her" writing still exists in the male lead that the drama is intentionally pushing as the one to support and root for. In NO universe should any "winner" of a woman's heart be THAT person. A man that crawls into her bed after she has sacrificed her dignity all day. A man that then starts taking pictures of her while she is not knowledgeable of them. Those actions were so beyond any reasoning, really.

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I totally agree with your last paragraph. I don't understand why one moment he's so mature and then the next he acts like a 2 year old. The writer is strange.

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" I could not understand why “funny” or “silly” music was playing as he not only “mischievously” RESPONDED to a text to her CURRENT partner, he PHYSICALLY CLIMBED INTO BED WITH HER after she had made it VERY clear that it was against her desires."

Because this show is written as a farce -- a madcap comedy -- a screwball romance. It's not supposed to be serious. Or real. It's just supposed to be silly and giddy and romantic. Like the film It Happened One Night or the TV shows Moonlighting and Remington Steele. The mystery and everything else are just incidental to the main love story. Nobody remembers the mysteries solved in Moonlighting or by the Remington Steele agency. They remember the moments between Dave and Maddie or Remington and Laura. And just like the other films and shows in the same genre, our boyishly bad hero will have to grow up and realize the error of his ways to win the fair -- and often stubborn -- maiden.

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Just because it's supposed to be comedy doesn't mean it will work for everyone or will be executed successfully.

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Thank you so much for saying this!

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@ missDVM

Thank you so much for saying this!

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You are welcome. I didn't mean to sound so harsh, if I did. I am just tired of how men shove women around, and if anything is said of how poorly she is being treated, they act like her expectations are…too high. *sigh* I think men are capable of more than that. It would be nice to see *that* expectation played out, instead. Again, hope I wasn't too harsh. Thanks for the comment. :)

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Your sentiments were not harsh at all. You simply said what needed to be said about Hae-Young's actions toward in MSH. Hae-Young continues to dilute our expectations. He has failed to step up to the plate and prove himself in actions/deeds and words with Sang-Hyo time and time again for the last few episodes.

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Amen. Hae Young responding to the text and then for the show to play romantic music in the background was the last nail in the coffin for me in regards to him. (Seriously, if he were the B lead, we would be throwing stuff at our screens.) It is as Sang Hyo said; she is doing Him a favor. He should be bending over backwards to "win her back", not make up excuses for her to lose a day of work, cook and clean and then actively mess up her current relationship.

Also, I understand his feelings are "genuine", but in my eyes, he is forcing himself on her with unwarranted skinship. If she constantly pushes him away, he should back off, even if the audience knows that she still has feelings for him. The fact that he doesn't tells me he is being selfish and not considering her feelings at all.

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I agree. Well said. :)

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yesss. i just can't with his character anymore. this whole situation he's created right now, too: he's emotionally manipulating her by bringing up his dad's health all the time and lying to her by acting like it wasn't his idea for his parents to stay with him in the first place... is he really surprised that she can't trust him...

then the texting/selfie-ing/crawling-into-bed-with-her was too much for me.

this isn't a case of me rooting for one man over the other, either. i was cheering for sanghyo when she yelled at them to both let her go during their literal tug of war. it pissed me off that they kept telling her to go away so they could fight. She is a person, not a fxcking prize to be won.

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If HaeYoung wants win her back, especially now, when it looks like that she is in what seems like very good, respectful relationship is to say "thank you" endlessly, buy her flowers, shows her respect, not only as woman, but as professional who has achieved so much. He does nothing of that, and if that was me, I would take plane out of his live, with a restraining order as a parting gift.

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I loved your comment. I agreed with your views, and the last sentence had me laughing! lol

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When he back hugs her while she's peeling the apples and has her arms pinned to her sides and won't let go, I actually started to feel panicky and claustrophobic. That would have been the deal breaker for me.

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I almost believe that his intention was to get her to see what married life is like, and that they fit as couple. Before it was about her wanting her career over him, and that's why I don't fault him entirely for their breakup, the way he did it, yes, but not for leaving, since he had his career too. Even if that his motive, it's still not a good plan because he still hasn't confessed any remorse for or given any reason why he left the way he did.

Sung Gyeom just creeps me out to no end. I think I need to find another drama of Nam Goong Min to get this character out of my head. Something tells me this is the only character he can play. Any suggestions to prove otherwise?

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I can only think of Unemployed Romance. His character was kind of innocent.

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Wild Chives and Soybean Soup

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I have never watched this show but looking atyou guys on here getting excited about it I think I will look out for it now.

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Sang Hyo was super adorable in this episode! I love all her lil faces and noises. Her little whine was too cutee.
It was good seeing some of Sang Hyo's & Hae Young's past. They were sweet. Seeing them cooking together was nice. I'm glad Hae Young didn't really step over the line with Sang Hyo by locking lips or even more than that. When he suddenly hugged her a few times though, he seemed genuinely happy and caring instead of being possessive about it.

I had wondered how long Sang Hyo would be able to keep this secret from Sung Gyum. He's eventually going to be fed up.
I hope Sang Hyo will realize that she needs some time away from both guys. She has to consider her lingering feelings for Hae Young instead of ignoring them.
Instead of seeing one of the guys backing down first, I would like to see Sang Hyo change and decide for herself who she wants to be with.

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When I watched the episodes a few days ago, I felt I had a lot to say. But I think you've covered everything and more, Saya. Your comments are seriously comprehensive so thanks for an awesome recap!

I love Hae-young. I find him adorable and his advances are very genuine and heart-melting. But I also need him to be more than just the swooony guy. I need him to do more, or do nothing - really, it doesn't matter. But I don't want him to do what he is currently doing - which is trying to woo her back but without altering the strategy he's been using since Day 1. It clearly hasn't worked and I'm not sure why he thinks it will work now.

I dislike Sung-gyum for very many reasons, but this episode is the last nail in the coffin. The guy is sketchy as heck, misleads people for his own benefit, and likes to look holier-than-thou in front of Sang-hyo when he's so far from that. I'm fast forwarding his scenes from now on or I'll end up dropping this 4 episodes before it ends.

I am blank on Sang-hyo other than she is likable at times, and intolerable at others. I like her hard-headedness but hate her tendency to run away from confrontations/conversations. She is indecisive which pisses me off, but at the same time I understand her fear. The issue is that its been going around in circles for far too long.

I really feel like this drama needs more time for Sang-hyo to accept Hae-young again. And SO much more time for her to fall in love with Sung-gyum if they go down that path. But, I also think they have no more story to tell. Thats contradictory, I know, but this drama has spiralled to nowheres land that the only think keeping me watching right now is JYH and YIN's intense chemistry.

(That back hug melted me to goo)

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Agree that this episode was frustrating.
I also question how good a wedding planner that works with lots of food really is if they cannot do basic cooking. They have to be more than just a decorating coordinator. They have to watch and check on everything as it goes along and that includes how well food preparation is moving along.
Maybe many actresses cannot do basic cooking but I bet it would be really hard to find even one wedding planner that cannot.

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Ha ha ha.... you are right - I hadn't thought about that. What I did wonder about, though, was how she has managed to get this far in life, living on her own, without knowing how to cook. How has she been eating - fast food every night? She's too thin for that!

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So this weeks episodes was a bit slow for me and I'm kind of disappointed. Plot wise I feel like almost nothing has changed since...I don't even know. Hae-yong got on my nerves. Truly his only charm is being played by Jin Lee Han cause on paper he is so one note:be cute, be mopey, be remorseful, but only childish or contrived stunts to do anything about getting her back. Though to be fair, I hope something else happened in the intervening years since his leaving did not count as abandonment. She isn't really doing so much either. They are cute together but that's mostly the actors the characters themselves... I'm just kinda like really are we really doing this?! Director Jo sometimes I think they could work but sometimes murder notwithstanding I wonder...Well I'm actually just done entirely. I'll finish it though since I got this far. GO EUN-JOO! LOVE HER! And Soo-ah was amusing too. Btw while yes either way this show isn't going for realism this is sooo not a proper screwball comedy.

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How many times do we have to hear Hae Young yell Sang Hyo's name in a threatening manner and then grab her wrist. Really cannot stand him doing that anymore. His inability to have a discussion with SH about their past is beyond disappointing. How could they not ask each other about that last day. Unbelievable!!
Taking selfies with a sleeping person is fraternity level creepy. I wouldn't trust a person who does that.
As for the murder mystery, I think the necklace belongs to Kyung Hee. She has worked at the hotel for years. I think she has some kind of history with GM Lee and Sung-gyum's dad and that Cha security guy may be her son. Getting so bored with the show, I must speculate wildly.

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I agree with everything you said - I don't understand what he has to lose by just sitting down and talking to her... he thinks he's lost her anyway. You would think that if he is desperate to keep her, he would want to know why she left him (his version of the story).
The selfies thing was really creepy - I mean who would want to look at those pictures later when it's obvious that one person in them wasn't even aware that they were being taken? It sort of looked like he was posing with a corpse! YUK!
And I like your last paragraph - I hadn't thought of that, but it's a good theory!

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Sorry, this comment is a reply to Toodles - don't know how it ended up on its own!

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Oh my gosh, you are so right about posing with a sleeping person. It's not cute at all! Its taking advantage of a vulnerable person and invading their sense of security big time.

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I would be very surprised if Sung Geum is the murderer. It is true he wanted to get his hands on that necklace but in order to solve a crime. Why would he murder someone to obtain evidence of a murder? It only means he cannot then use the necklace as evidence since the minute he shows it he will be seen as guilty. It just doesn't further his plan to kill anyone--and he had the money to pay her for it. Also the fact that he doesn't have it is proof because she definitely had it in the hotel room while making the call. So find the necklace and find the murderer. It makes more sense that the murderer is someone who doesn't want the necklace to see the light of day. So I still care about the mystery. It is the veering away from this for the main actress that is making this drama frustrating and boring for me. I just read your recap and haven't even watched this episode but until now this was one of my main dramas. I have watched unsubbed then subbed every week because I couldn't wait. Not into the indecision that causes the lead to lie to Sung geum.

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I've been trying to figure out why I like this episode so much, despite it's many flaws and I think the main reason (besides Eun Joo's amazingness) is the happy family dynamic. How awesome is it that Hae Young has such loving and supportive parents?

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It really bothers me that everyone is giving Hae Young a free pass on his controlling via manipulation of Sang Hyo while condemning Sung Geum for saying things like "You come stay in my room, I'll sleep in my car", to help Sang Hyo out of an earlier situation she was obviously uncomfortable with. Did no one notice how hard Hae Young squeezed Sang Hyo's burnt finger when she told him to let go of her at the table?

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i love tal tal hes so much perfect guy sooo hansome and gentleman i wished im his empress ...woooooooooooowww i love youuu tal tal...

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