I didn’t get the minion job so I’m posting my recap of NOKDU FLOWER Episodes 13-14 here.

(I guess my recap was too long lol. I didn’t want to leave out any details)


    PART 1

    Episode 13

    Yi-kang and Ja-in get a good look at each other, but the battle frenzy tears them apart and Ja-in is dragged away by soldiers. Chief Peddler Song tells Deok-ki that the provincial army was utterly defeated at Hwangto, and staggers thinking about his daughter.

    Yi-kang finds General Nokdu at the battle site, strewn with corpses of men and women alike. Yi-kang thought he’d feel exhilarated by the victory, but instead he feels disturbed. He asks if Injeukcheon (the Donghak religious tenet that all people are deities) really awaits at the end of their road. Nokdu replies: “We must find it ourselves, now that the doors are open.”

    Ja-in wakes up on the ground a bit further away, and is noticed by two peasants scavenging among the dead. They drag her down a slope, but two shots are heard. Ja-in, holding her smoking pistol, is surrounded by the Donghak vanguard. Pale and trembling, she is taken to a tent blindfolded, and tied to a post. Yi-kang walks in and demands she is released. Didn’t they say they would release prisoners, and besides, she’s a woman? Commander Kyung-sun is nonplussed and orders she be watched carefully, since her father is the chief peddler of the province.

    Back at Gobu, Myung-sim meets Yi-hyun, and she throws herself in his arms regardless of his blood-stained clothes, thanking him for returning alive. Teacher Hwang interrupts, clearly not pleased to see Yu-hyun again. Sitting down, he tells Yi-hyun to think of it as a learning experience. Yi-hyun gives a small smile and agrees that he did learn something very valuable, and that the lesson was harsh (i.e.: that his teacher sent him to war to be killed). Yi-hyun reminds him that his marriage with Myung-sim is set to happen soon, but Teacher Hwang obviously wants to postpone a marriage that he considers degrading for his noble family, so he gives the excuse that the times are chaotic and says they will speak again later.

    At the Baek household, things are looking grim because disgruntled peasants now see it as their chance to get their revenge, and they beat Master Baek to a pulp (karma dude). Yi-hyun appears and threatens to shoot them so they leave. Master Baek asks why he didn’t bring along his half-brother and Yi-hyun scoffs. The family is shocked to learn that Yi-kang has become a Donghak member, an enemy.

    Ja-in and Yi-kang catch up while she’s a prisoner, in their classic banter way. She grumbles that he’s a rebel, but he’s all “I’m fighting for the welfare of the people”. She solemnly thanks him, because she had felt afraid until she saw him. Yi-kang: “Were you only thankful?” She gives him the stink eye, and he mumbles that he was just joking to make her relax. She threatens to hit him if he makes another joke, her old spunk back…


    PART 2

    A group of Donghak peasants arrive clamouring for the daughter of Chief Peddler Song (cameo by Yoon Kyung-sang and Lee Joon-hyuk). With a throwback to their pupil-master relationship in SIX FLYING DRAGONS, Joon-hyuk pulls out the infamous book on the “Eastern Twin Dragon Method” and Kyung-sang demonstrates a few of the moves, to the bewilderment and amusement of everyone else. Yi-kang hilariously convinces them that the woman in question is Nokdu’s lover and they leave.

    Teacher Hwang takes a tray to his sister because she hasn’t been eating, and notices that she’s reading the Geumo Shinwa, a collection of short stories by Kim Si-seub. Myung-Sim perks up and says they are suuuper addictive. She enthusiastically shows him her favourite story: a romance between an average scholar studying for the civil service exam and a noble lady, who marry despite their families’ objection. She recounts that she cried a lot reading the story (no, don’t say that!). Teacher Hwang looks pensive when she re-affirms that she really likes Yi-hyun. Meanwhile the Baek family discuss the situation, worried because Teacher Hwang keeps postponing the wedding. Master Baek wonders why Yi-kang joined the rebel Donghak movement, and Yi-hyun coldly replies: “I thought you knew. You pushed him in that direction.” He walks out and heads towards a dark shed, where weasly Hong is tied up. He begs for water, but Yi-hyun doesn’t reply. Chills.

    At the Donghak camp, the news spreads that the Joseon government army is coming. The commanders gather to discuss, and they learn that they will be facing an army of 1000 men, armed with enough gunpowder and machine guns. They make a plan: rather than fight at Jeonju fortress, they will lure them out. General Nokdu meets with Ja-in, who’s sarcastically asks if they treat innocent civilians like this. Nokdu replies that she is an army supplier, not an innocent civilian, because she takes money from soldiers who might die anytime; she is a merchant who got her privilege through bribes. Ja-in retorts that privilege is a right. Nokdu replies: “Privilege is power, not a right.” Nokdu calls her out for volunteering to come to the battlefield to keep her petty rights and gain new privileges, and informs a seething Ja-in that he intends to end the privileges of peddlers. But right now, he needs to negotiate something with her father, and he will use her as collateral.

    Cut to Yi-kang disguised with beard and glasses at the gates of Jeonju. The guards are amazed that he has such a mature-looking son and a young wife (his two Donghak companions also in disguise), who manage to laugh nervously. They pass the inspection gates while Yi-kang grumbles about their terrible acting skills. They send a message to the Jeonju Inn via flying knife, and then walk through the marketplace. Yi-kang sees his mother and freezes.



    PART 3/4

    Episode 14

    Yi-kang freezes when he sees his mother. She walks past, not recognising him in his disguise. Having delivered their message, Yi-kang and his companions return to the mountains that evening. Beo-dul notices his despondent mood and asks why he didn’t at least say hello to his mother. He asks about her parents. We learn that they are both dead, and that her father was a hunter who was preyed upon by nobles. Yi-kang remembers Ja-in telling him that Yi-hyun was conscripted into the army by his Teacher Hwang. Determined, he declares that “Beo-dul, we will hunt the aristocrats.” He gives her a warm look and Beo-dul says she’s going to sleep, looking a little bit flustered.

    Chief Peddler Song, having received the message and decided that a merchant needs to sell, sends Deok-Ki with the desired goods to a familiar-looking hut in the mountains (is this another cameo from SIX FLYING DRAGONS?). In exchange, Ja-in is set free, with the advice to not blab about what she has seen. We don’t get a glimpse of what the goods are, and Deok-ki curiously asks what they are for. Just then Beo-dul and Beon-gae come running and inform their commander that Yi-kang has run away. Ja-in overhears and hurries towards Gobu, worried that Yi-Kang might get caught and beheaded (since he is still wanted to murder). Deok-ki scolds her for acting like this, saying Yi-kang must be responsible for his choices, and convinces her to go back to Jeonju.

    The Donghak vanguard discuss what to do. Giant monk Hae-sung and the young ones want to go back for Yi-kang, but commander Kyung-Sun isn’t convinced. What kind of army is so generous to someone who ran away? “He is our comrade no matter what. I will go back for him,”, says Hae-sung. In the end young Beo-dul and Beon-gae seem to get permission.

    Back at Gobu, Yi-kang runs into his former thug minion, who is really happy to see him alive. Yi-hyun takes off the blood-stained robe that Myung-sim had embroidered for him. He leaves the house carrying two lanterns and gift box. Yi-kang shows up and asks if Yi-hyun will still proceed with the marriage knowing Teacher Hwang tried to kill him, and Yi-hyun says that it is a promise between the families, and between himself and Myung-sim. Yi-kang then says he will accompany him, since he promised to deliver his wedding gift box, and smears his face with black paint to avoid being recognised. Yi-Kang’s former minion Eok-si (?) acts as the crier. Meanwhile, a group of nobles meet with Teacher Hwang and invite him to be the leader of their own army, formed of nobles and scholars, the “People’s Army”…


    PART 4/4

    Startled by the noise outside, Teacher Hwang and Myung-sim come to the door, where they find Yi-hyun and his two attendants. Yi-hyun smilingly states that tomorrow is his wedding day. Teacher Hwang has a hard time containing his fury, but he heads inside to chat with Yi-hyun, who pulls out Weasel Hong’s identity tag and says that he will bury what happened. Hwang realizes that Yi-hyun knows he tried to kill him, and yells at him to get out. Yi-hyun just repeats: “Please buy the wedding box.” Myung-sim and the other nobles rush into the room while Teacher Hwang grabs his sword and confirms that yes, he enlisted Yi-hyun as a local soldier and prayed he would die on the battlefield. He calls off the wedding. Yi-hyun, still kneeling, looks up and with clenched teeth says “Lord Hwang, you reap what you sow.” The other nobles drag Yi-hyun outisde, beat him up, and kick him out saying he should be grateful they let him live after dishonouring his teacher and a nobleman. Yi-kang picks him up and takes him home. The wedding box is left by the door and Myung-sim sobs inconsolably.

    Meanwhile Ja-in and Deok-ki sit by a fire and she wonders if Yi-kang is safe. Deok-Ki smiles as he tells her that it was not compassion that had clouded her judgement, but love. He laughs and teases her, and she cries in realisation of her feelings.

    Back in an alley of Gobu, Yi-hyun and Yi-kang are waylaid by a group of beggars, who hold them at knife-edge until Beo-dul and Beon-gae swoop in to save them. They want to leave quickly, but Yi-hyun asks them to wait while he serves his brother some home-cooked food (okay…) Eating together always meant something to the two-half brothers, so Yi-kang couldn’t refuse. While the young ones dig into the food, Yi-hyun speaks to Yi-kang outside. Essentially, he wants him to leave the Donghak army, because they will lose against the Joseon army, which is better equipped. Yi-hyun says he has seen the might of Western weapons and modern armies in Japan, but Yi-kang counters that ten men cannot defeat one man who fights for his life with fury. The air grows tense as Yi-hyun drily says “come home, and become an official”. He offers to clear Yi-kang’s name with the magistrate, and as a bonus, to offer the heads of the two young Donghak members eating inside. Frazzled, Yi-kang runs into the room to find his two companions passed out. Yi-hyun tells him that he will raise up his family again and invites Yi-kang to join the dark side: “Our father’s words were true after all. You have to eat, or you will be eaten.” Yi-kang begs him to stop, but Yi-hyun says it’s too late: soldiers are already on their way to arrest them. All Yi-kang has to do is turn a blind eye, says Yi-Hyun. Everyone does it, so he will do it too. Yi-kang stares in amazement and panics.


    (Wow, I discovered that comments boxes only accept a limited word count!)


      Wow. Such a detailed account of the episodes! I read it and realized I missed something. Now, I have to go back and rewatched!


        You’re welcome! I’m glad to be of service. This show has so much detail that even rewatching it to write the recaps I discovered new things. 🙂


    I doubt you got rejected for it being too long. I remember JB’s and GF’s recaps were so minutely detailed that if I watched a show after reading the recap it felt like I had already seen it. This was very good. Thank you for sharing it.


    Thank you so much @WishfulToki <3.

    This show deserves it!

    I still need to go back and read all of your recaps and finish what I've started.

    It was so heavy I needed to break away from it for a while. It's like MY COUNTRY. It's emotionally exhausting.