Three Musketeers: Episode 6
Dal-hyang and Sohyeon finally get to make good on their bet, even if one of them has no idea the game is rigged, good intentions be damned—or not, since those intentions might’ve saved a life. Or yes, unless being set right cancels the wrong done to set things right? Either way, Dal-hyang has some soul-searching to do, as does the worldlier Sohyeon, since both are faced with some interesting revelations this hour. Some truths just hurt a little (or in this case, a lot) more than others.
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Kim Feel – “사랑한다면서 (You Said You Loved Me)” [ Download ]
EPISODE 6: “Commander Kim Ja-jeom”
Yoon-seo doesn’t budge an inch from her place between the two dueling men, even when Sohyeon tells her to step aside. She stands firm as she tells Seung-po and Min-seo to get out of the sidelines and protect the prince like they’re supposed to.
They go reluctantly to Dal-hyang, while Yoon-seo looks her husband in the eyes and pleads for him to stop—isn’t it enough that he’s already bleeding? Sohyeon slowly lowers his sword, unable to deny her.
Dal-hyang is gagged and tied in the same library where Ingguldai is currently being held, and he is most definitely not happy to see the enemy general.
Seung-po tends to Sohyeon’s arm wound and tsks that the prince was just jealous of Dal-hyang. Sohyeon’s “Jealous? Me?” expression is truly priceless.
Of course, Seung-po takes this as a positive experience, because it at least means Sohyeon isn’t a total loon without human emotion. And then he tries to spin it so that he set it all up for Sohyeon to be jealous of Dal-hyang and appreciate his wife more, which, hah.
Sohyeon attempts to turn Yoon-seo away at the door when she comes calling, but she won’t be denied and pushes her way inside to tend to him. Seung-po couldn’t be any happier to step aside, even though his efforts to tell the princess that her man is feeling quite manly today are quickly cut off by Sohyeon.
Even though Minister Choi is of the same mind as Sohyeon and didn’t want another war starting due to Ingguldai’s beheading, he acts like a chicken with his head cut off when Seung-po tells him that they’re keeping Ingguldai safe in the prince’s library. He’s angrypleased!
Min-seo feels bad for having to tie Dal-hyang up, but he doesn’t exactly have other options, either. At least he fashions a bandage for the wound Dal-hyang sustained in the fight.
Dal-hyang can’t stop thinking back to Yoon-seo’s intervention, and how she only had eyes and thoughts for the prince (well, what was he expecting?). It’s enough to make him cry from behind his gag, which Ingguldai can’t help but notice.
When he removes Dal-hyang’s gag out of pity, Dal-hyang all but curses him for doing so when he should be dead. But instead, the enemy general is a guarded guest of the palace while Dal-hyang is a captive. Maybe it’s because Ingguldai can’t understand him, but at least he does seem understanding when he re-gags Dal-hyang.
Sohyeon is tight-lipped when it comes to answering any of Yoon-seo’s questions regarding Dal-hyang, but he looks just a bit more affected when Yoon-seo asks who that nameless mystery woman is.
She promises Sohyeon that he can tell her if he has a mistress, since she isn’t supposed to get jealous… but in the time it takes him to kinda-not-really-answer, she unconsciously tightens the bandage around his arm to the point where he lets out an Oww.
Instead of answering her, Sohyeon instead asks what kind of charms she pulled on Dal-hyang during that tiny amount of time she was in his village for him to have remembered her all this time. Yoon-seo shrugs that she didn’t do anything out of the ordinary, causing Sohyeon to scoff when he asks if she’s just that attractive to men.
Yoon-seo gives a little shrug with her “I suppose so,” which makes Sohyeon laugh. He doesn’t know what’s so attractive about her—especially since he’s never seen it himself. It’s a mean thing to say, but he at least frames it jokingly so Yoon-seo can quip right back, “It’s because you haven’t looked.”
So Sohyeon toys with her in his classic way, by suddenly pretending to turn serious as he asks her to show him what’s so attractive about her. At least when Yoon-seo mentions he’s going off-topic purposefully, Sohyeon commends her for getting stronger in standing up to him. She’s not as gullible as she used to be.
But he still won’t answer her about “that woman,” and he’s firm about it. Still, he pays her special attention by asking what she’d be comfortable with when it comes to dealing with Dal-hyang.
Her gaze suddenly goes distant as she says that she wants Dal-hyang to be kept away from them so that he and Sohyeon won’t have a reason to be at each other’s throats anymore. Above all, she wants Dal-hyang to be free to pursue his dreams… just somewhere else.
Sohyeon and Ingguldai converse freely in Dal-hyang’s presence, using Dal-hyang’s ignorance when it comes to Manchu to talk about him specifically. Ingguldai’s respect for Dal-hyang comes from having fought him before, and both he and Sohyeon agree that his skills are good—not the best around, but pretty good.
Ingguldai breaks the bro code by telling Sohyeon that Dal-hyang was crying like a girl earlier, to which Sohyeon poses a request: In order to tame the wild horse that is Dal-hyang, he has to beat him in a fight first… but since he’s wounded, he’s not at his best. He asks the general to tell him Dal-hyang’s weaknesses so he can gain the upper hand.
Then Sohyeon takes a sword to cut Dal-hyang free, but on the condition that they continue with their bet right here, right now. “Draw your sword,” Sohyeon challenges.
Seung-po isn’t surprised by this turn of events, leaving Min-seo as the only one out of the loop and very confused. But he’s the first to make a wager on Sohyeon’s insistence, though he puts his money on Dal-hyang because of Sohyeon’s wound. For the sake of variety, Min-seo must bet on the prince.
Sohyeon doesn’t really give Dal-hyang an option and turns his back, promising that if he whirls around on the count of three and Dal-hyang doesn’t attack, he’ll attack first. One… Two…
Three. He turns around, and Dal-hyang is standing with his sword at the ready. He lunges first, and the prince parries. As Ingguldai watches on, Sohyeon remembers his words of advice: Dal-hyang is straightforward and true, and won’t catch on quickly if he’s being tricked.
So, Sohyeon follows his lead in pretending to lose at first, making Dal-hyang think he has the upper hand. Then, he’ll flip the tables and use Dal-hyang’s momentary confusion to land a few critical hits before using a finishing move to knock the sword out of his hands.
The fight goes exactly as Ingguldai said it would, and ends with Dal-hyang on the floor without a weapon. Min-seo takes Seung-po’s money since he bet on the right man, while Sohyeon reminds Dal-hyang of the conditions of the bet they made: He’s now relieved of his meager title and duties, and has to go home.
Also, since he’s no longer a military officer, he can’t use the excuse of following the king’s orders to challenge Sohyeon anymore, nor can he speak about what transpired between them.
He does take a moment to school Dal-hyang on his foolishness in accepting the bet though, especially since he would’ve had to face Ingguldai if he’d won—and if that happened, he would have been killed.
“Be grateful that you’re alive,” Sohyeon adds. “Do you have anything to say?” Dal-hyang, looking defeated, just says no. Even though Sohyeon’s order to leave the palace must be devastating, Dal-hyang’s dignity stays intact as he accepts his loss.
He pauses at the door for only a moment, but no one says a word until Dal-hyang is gone. And of course it’s Seung-po who breaks the silence, since he knows Sohyeon well enough to know he is NOT skilled enough to best Dal-hyang in a fight and knows he must’ve cheated somehow.
When Ingguldai expresses concern over whether releasing Dal-hyang just like that will come back to bite him, Sohyeon isn’t worried—Dal-hyang wouldn’t risk turning the woman he loves into a widow for revenge.
After sending one last, longing look toward Yoon-seo’s quarters, Dal-hyang arrives at the stables in civilian clothes. Pan-swe is confused when Dal-hyang pays him for his services and tells him he can return to Seung-po, since he’s learned his place now. And that place doesn’t allow for him to have a servant.
Just like Sohyeon predicted, Dal-hyang has gained insight and perspective from losing the fight, since he now realizes he acted foolishly when he could’ve taken the three musketeers’ offer and become their friend. Now he’s just got his old-as-dirt horse. (Ha.)
While Ingguldai waits for Sohyeon to come through on his word to try and convince his father to retract his execution order (with the help of Minister Choi), he has to hide when he hears someone fumbling with the lock at the door—and though they don’t enter, they do replace the lock.
Min-seo catches the culprit: Yoon-seo’s lady-in-waiting, who claims the princess instructed her to find out what happened to Dal-hyang. At least Min-seo is suspicious after she goes, and is more than surprised to find that his key no longer opens the door. Uh oh.
While the two musketeers try to track down the lock-changing court lady, Dal-hyang and his horse sigh as they leave the palace…
…Only to see the suspicious court lady slinking off into the night. Remembering that there’s a spy in Yoon-seo’s midst, Dal-hyang sets to following her.
She hands over the key to No-soo, whom we haven’t seen in a while, though she admits that she might’ve been found out. Yes, that’s exactly what you say to a guy in an eyepatch, because it’s not like he’ll just turn around and ki—…
Dal-hyang happens on the scene right after the court lady’s throat has been cut, but loses sight of No-soo when he trips over her (not dead yet?) body.
Seung-po tells Sohyeon about the lock, and how the act of locking Ingguldai in rather than taking him out was meant to send a message that Sohyeon isn’t the only one in control of Ingguldai’s fate.
Cut to: Minister Kim Ja-jeom, whom we also haven’t seen for a while, back in court. Well, we know who was behind the lock and the message—but even though he was pinned for conspiring against the throne, he bows before the king like he’s been a loyal servant this whole time.
But it’s mostly that he’s finally got a bit of dirt on someone that isn’t him, since he proclaims to King Injo and the entire court that someone in the palace has been consorting with Ingguldai and swearing their loyalty to Later Jin (soon to become Qing), also exactly what Kim Ja-jeom is guilty of.
Kim Ja-jeom claims that he inserted himself as a spy to root out other traitors to the throne, leaving out the part where all of that’s not true. Of course, he also lies that his memory is foggy when it comes to knowing the identities of the other traitors, which Minister Choi calls him out on.
While his co-conspirators fret that he’ll out them, Kim Ja-jeom presents his “evidence” to the king, claiming that whoever was involved with Ingguldai the day he disappeared got into a fight and was injured. He looks pointedly over at Sohyeon when he mentions that—all this is his way of leading the king and the court to implicate the crown prince as a traitor.
Turns out that court lady wasn’t dead yet when Dal-hyang stumbled over her, since he flashes back to her last shuddering words about how she betrayed the princess because she was being blackmailed by Mi-ryung.
We go into a flashback within a flashback to the day of the ceremony for Dal-hyang and his fellow newly-minted civil servants—Mi-ryung attended the festivities in disguise and had even bumped into Yoon-seo.
The court lady had recognized Mi-ryung then, and approached her. She tells Dal-hyang that Mi-ryung was selected to be the prince’s bride five years ago, and how at the recent ceremony, Mi-ryung had sardonically asked her how it felt to serve Yoon-seo, the girl who replaced her.
It was at the ceremony that Mi-ryung had declared her vendetta against Sohyeon to the court lady, her blood boiling at the thought of him living so happily with his new wife after what he did to her.
The court lady relays that to Dal-hyang, but with the addition that Sohyeon was madly in love with Mi-ryung, so much so that the court lady was willing to do whatever Mi-ryung asked as long as she promised to stay away from the palace—because the court lady didn’t want Sohyeon finding out Mi-ryung was alive out of fear that he’d leave Yoon-seo for her. She dies after saying she might’ve been wrong in thinking that.
Then it’s back to the present with Dal-hyang (in the sun for a change), as he talks to the merchant who handled Mi-young’s hanbok order for the ceremony. Luckily for him, she’s just made a recent order of fabric that needs delivering.
After sending a secret missive to Ingguldai asking him to be patient and wait, Sohyeon and his musketeers visit Kim Ja-jeom at his lavish abode. Once they’re alone, Kim Ja-jeom doesn’t even hesitate to ask: “How is your wound?”
Since the fight happened the night Sohyeon caught Kim Ja-jeom and his co-conspirators at the gibang, both of them speak plainly about the incident—even though no one else saw or recognized Sohyeon, Kim Ja-jeom did. And that’s all that matters.
He hands back the key to Ingguldai’s library prison, claiming he doesn’t need it—he won’t tell anyone about Ingguldai either, since that’d be against his interests of working with him. Sohyeon tells him to get to the point as he holds up the key, because this sounds an awful lot like the lead-up to a bribe.
Kim Ja-jeom knows that Sohyeon is trying to prevent the impending war, and tells him how futile his efforts are. Maybe he can delay it for a few months, a year at most, but he can’t stop it from happening. “What’s meant to happen will happen,” Kim Ja-jeom adds ominously. “That’s how history repeats itself.”
His interests aren’t in influencing the war one way or the other, because he just wants to live through whatever happens. “Do you know what I regret most in this life? Making your father the king.” (Since he led the coup against Gwanghae to place King Injo on the throne.)
Sohyeon’s expression goes dark at this insult, but Kim Ja-jeom isn’t fazed at all, and keeps rubbing it in. But maybe he crosses the line when he adds that all he can think of now is that Gwanghae wasn’t so bad compared to Injo.
However, he’s been through this song and dance enough before to know that just pulling another coup would be useless—whether Injo would be replaced by Sohyeon or someone else, it’d all lead to the same conclusion. That’s why he’s so in favor of Later Jin taking over, because he’s lost faith in his country’s ability to govern itself.
And for a hot second, Kim Ja-jeom talks like seeing Sohyeon that night might’ve changed his mind about the future of their country… but it didn’t. He just thinks that Sohyeon might see his reasoning about how they’re bound to lose the impending war (however true that would turn out to be) and that it’ll be Later Jin/Qing who’ll usher in a new world. [Insert maniacal laugh here.]
After all that crazy talk, Kim Ja-jeom finally gets to the point, hopefully: He wants Sohyeon to join with him in deposing his father so he can take the throne. It’s what their future invading overlords would want. Then he gets uncomfortably close to Sohyeon in order to mouth-breathe the remainder of his delusions onto the prince’s face.
Meanwhile, Dal-hyang has followed the fabric deliveryman to where he hoped to find Mi-ryung, only to find a storage room instead. Instead of giving up, he tugs on a tiny piece of rope peeking out from the wall, and ends up opening a secret door.
He goes down the stairs and to the room at the end of what must only be the super secret ground level (those windows are pouring daylight in, so it’s not a basement), and finds Mi-ryung sitting in a room, all dolled up in a traditional Manchu garment and hairstyle.
Far be it for the femme fatale to be caught unawares, but neither is Dal-hyang when No-soo comes at him with a sword. Mi-ryung only has to nod for No-soo to disappear back to whatever corner he slunk out of.
Aw, I was looking forward to seeing Sohyeon lay the verbal smackdown on Kim Ja-jeom after he got to just talk at him for so long, but we only pick back up with the three musketeers as they ride from the minister’s house.
But Sohyeon has a lot to think about, since he flashes back to the ultimatum Kim Ja-jeom gave him: If Sohyeon doesn’t agree to join forces with him, he’ll tell King Injo about Ingguldai and make sure all the heat falls on him.
Seung-po, looking like he’s riding a horse on a lurching rowboat, advises Sohyeon to pretend to play ball with Kim Ja-jeom until they can figure out how to deal with him properly. That’s not what Sohyeon wants to do, even if he doesn’t have another solution yet. He has until tonight to find one.
The three musketeers are surprised to find Dal-hyang waiting outside one of their haunts, and when Sohyeon brings up the obvious (he’s supposed to be gone), Dal-hyang bows his head as he says that he’s still got a mission to complete.
Dal-hyang explains to Sohyeon that Mi-ryung wants to meet with him, and we find out why in a flashback, where she claimed she could be of help to Sohyeon against Kim Ja-jeom because she had documents that would ruin the minister.
But the condition is that Sohyeon would have to go alone. Even though she tried to convince Dal-hyang that she and Sohyeon will be fiiine after they settle the issues between them, Dal-hyang tells Sohyeon in the present that he definitely shouldn’t go. “It’s too dangerous,” he argues.
Sohyeon smirks at that, all, Wait, now you’re worried about me? Well, this is embarrassing. Haha. Dal-hyang argues that he’s still the crown prince after all, but Sohyeon doesn’t care about that—he’d believe it if Dal-hyang were worried about the princess becoming a widow, which he knows to be true.
So Sohyeon feels safe enough to ask Dal-hyang to go with him to meet Mi-ryung, since her recent existence has been a secret between just the two of them this whole time. (Aww, trust!) But Dal-hyang is only allowed to follow Sohyeon to the secret door, where No-soo holds him back.
Dal-hyang is so worried that Sohyeon actually has to pry his hand off his sleeve before he can go down the steps. For good measure, he orders Dal-hyang not to follow him.
Mi-ryung is waiting for him, looking nothing like she did all those death glares ago—now, face to face for the first time in five years, she looks almost frightened.
Her eyes gleam with unshed tears as she just stares at him, and Sohyeon is the first to break the silence: “It’s been a long time.”
An already-antsy Dal-hyang runs downstairs the second he hears a crash, but finds himself in an awkward position when the prince and Mi-ryung are engaged in an embrace.
He thinks he’s stumbled upon something he shouldn’t have… until he sees that Mi-ryung’s hand is holding a knife she’s stabbed into Sohyeon’s chest.
Even so, Sohyeon orders Dal-hyang to stay back, and Dal-hyang reluctantly obeys.
Well, that outcome was probably inevitable, even if it does little to soothe all the burning questions still surrounding Sohyeon and Mi-ryung. Apart, both of them make for intriguing characters we can’t quite get a full grasp on, and if this is what we got from their first moment together, then it’s time well spent. More, please.
There’s no way of knowing whether the doe-eyed look Mi-ryung sported was at all genuine, because while I can believe she can put on a femme fatale act in front of everyone else, it’s not so inconceivable that she’d find herself reverting back to whoever she was when she was with Sohyeon. At the same time though, we saw them lock eyes during that ceremony a few episodes back, and if looks could kill, then this show would’ve been a whole lot shorter.
The thing is, I don’t feel like I know Mi-ryung well enough to say that she was definitely faking it or definitely not (or perhaps she wasn’t and then woke up, nobody’s perfect), which is something I like about watching her. She’s predictable in some ways and not in others, a trait she shares with the similarly-intriguing Sohyeon. His reactions are a little bit easier to guess and read, even if it’s still so unsettling just to watch him carry himself as a man of great principle when his past brings up so many questions, least of which might be: Who ARE you?
So on the one hand, I have to respect a character who can make me want so badly to forget how morally repugnant he might’ve once been (or had to be, or was coerced to be), but on the other hand, this conflicted feeling is a lot harder than knowing exactly how to feel. Sohyeon just seems like the kind of hero you’d want to be rooting for unequivocally, and I love that this show simply won’t let us do that. Part of the mystique is going to lie in the show’s ability to tease us without giving it all away halfway through the run, which I’m not too worried about if this is where we’ve ended up for now—this show is by no means perfect, but it seems to have a good grasp on which side its bread is buttered.
As far as Dal-hyang’s change of heart goes, if it’s true that he had no idea what trick Sohyeon was pulling (and I think he didn’t), then it makes Sohyeon’s cheating kind of terrible of him, doesn’t it? Sohyeon may have had his reasons and Dal-hyang’s best interests at heart, but he basically instigated a major personality shift that wouldn’t have happened if he hadn’t resorted to unapologetic trickery—even if the results were good. Far be it for me to complain when puppy-eyed bromance is suddenly thrown my way, but if I had to make a bet between the two of them based on moral integrity alone, the only way Sohyeon would see a single cent is if it passed him on its way to Dal-hyang.
- Three Musketeers: Episode 5
- Kolorful Palette: Great expectations [Three Musketeers]
- Three Musketeers: Episode 4
- Three Musketeers: Episode 3
- Kolorful Palette: Black and white [Three Musketeers]
- Three Musketeers: Episode 2
- Three Musketeers: Episode 1
- One last barrage of promos for the swashbuckling Three Musketeers
- Three Musketeers (and prince) in poster and stills