Cinderella and the Four Knights: Episode 5
To no surprise to anyone, the no-dating rule is proving to be problematic. Romantic feelings are developing, and how can they not be given the situation? Ha-won has intrigued and charmed the four knights ever since she stepped foot in Sky House. It was only a matter of time before some of them began questioning her relation to them. Is she a friend, foe, fake fiancée, and/or a mere part-timer? Lines need to be drawn, because otherwise the answer is complicated.
EPISODE 5 RECAP
Hyun-min angrily grabs a fistful of Ji-woon’s shirt, enraged by Ji-woon’s desire to steal Ha-won from him. Ha-won tells them to stop, and fireworks go off as they glare at each other. Someone calls her name, and she turns around to find Seo-woo holding up a sign, and Bodyguard Lee with a cake in his hands. They wish Ha-won a surprise happy birthday, leading her to believe that Hyun-min and Ji-woon were in on it as well.
Hyun-min plays along, explaining that they were just punking her, and that Ji-woon was overacting. Ji-woon utters that he was being completely genuine, but Hyun-min interjects that it was all part of the surprise. Seo-woo guides Ha-won to the birthday spread, and Hyun-min and Ji-woon reluctantly join her. Ha-won admires the food and decorations prepared by Bodyguard Lee and Seo-woo, respectively.
Ha-won’s surprised to learn that the skincare products on her desk were from Hyun-min; he had purchased full-sized products of the samples she painstakingly collected from the stream. Ji-woon’s silent when Hyun-min asks if he got her anything, but Ha-won exclaims that he can treat her now.
She whips out her phone and selfie stick and takes a quick selfie, capturing everyone sitting around the food table. Mission #1 accomplished. Ha-won reveals a surprise of her own; it’s not actually her birthday.
Confused, Seo-woo indicates where she marked her birthday in her planner, but Ha-won points out that the month is off since the page is torn. She decides to accept today as her birthday, however, because it feels like one with everyone gathered. Ji-woon leaves, but not before cryptically expressing that things are about to get interesting.
Hye-ji pricks herself while sewing and is reminded of Ji-woon’s promise to protect her from getting hurt by Hyun-min going forward; he said he had an idea. At Sky House, Ji-woon’s actions from earlier preoccupy Ha-won’s mind. He catches her curiously peering at him, so she scurries away from the window.
Meanwhile, Seo-woo flips through the pages of Ha-won’s planner and pieces together the puzzle; the torn scrap was ripped from the month of May. He’s excited to have deduced her real birthday, but is puzzled by his eagerness. Cutie.
The next morning, Hyun-min warns Ha-won not to feel flustered by Ji-woon’s words; she’ll end up getting hurt because the only person in Ji-woon’s heart is Hye-ji. Ha-won says she’s well aware.
Grandpa Kang is pleased by Ha-won’s blurry selfie, the cousins’ first family photo. He rewards her with one year’s tuition and a cash bonus. She’s shocked by his generosity, but he insists he’s not paying her nearly enough; there are also more missions to come.
Ha-won knows Bodyguard Lee informed Grandpa Kang about her mom’s situation at the columbarium; her bonus is the exact amount she paid to keep her mother there. He quickly apologizes, but she thanks him wholeheartedly.
He offers to take her to the columbarium, but she insists on taking the bus and teases him for sounding like her parents when he cautions her against getting home too late. Alone in his office, Grandpa Kang unearths a photo of his three sons and muses that their boys finally ate together.
Stepmother learns that Grandpa Kang’s new wife Hwa-ja is a customer and volunteers to handle her facial so she can obtain some intel regarding Ha-won’s living situation. Based on Hwa-ja’s reaction, Stepmother informs Yoo-na that Ha-won is definitely living at Sky House, much to Yoo-na’s misery.
At the columbarium, Ha-won smiles as she arranges her mother’s urn in the designated spot. She gives her mom a life update and promises to earn enough to go to college. Before leaving, Ha-won pulls a single rose from her mother’s bouquet and places it the cubby above her mother’s, unaware that it belongs to Ji-woon’s deceased mother, who died on the same date as her mother.
Back at Sky House, she finds the housekeeper, Ms. Beolgyo, and others preparing a huge feast in preparation for the anniversary of the death of Grandpa Kang’s sons, aka the cousins’ fathers. Ms. Beolgyo explains that the anniversary of their deaths is observed on the same day, and every year the boys have never showed up. She knows they never liked their fathers, but finds their apathy too cruel.
Bodyguard Lee advises the boys to observe this year now that Ji-woon has joined the family. But Hyun-min and Seo-woo barely take their eyes off their devices, and Ji-woon remarks that he’s only known his father for a year, ergo his participation is futile.
Over cups of tea, Ha-won expresses to Bodyguard Lee that the boys’ refusal is too harsh. Bodyguard Lee surprises her by replying that he understands where the boys are coming from. He says there are many things at Sky House that are complicated, but Ha-won proposes that she give this conundrum a try.
She meets with Grandpa Kang the next day to inform him of this and guarantees that she’ll succeed. He reminds her that this is a more difficult endeavor than the first mission, but she believes it’s also that much more important. Grandpa Kang informs Bodyguard Lee that he’s decided to trust her with this; it’s already been ten years since he’s been observing on his own.
It’s another day at the pool for Ji-woon, which means abs for us. He dives in and Ha-won submerges her face in for a quick check to see that he’s decent. He is, but when Ji-woon pops up, she inquires if he’s swimming in the nude again.
He affirms that he is and threatens to step out, but she’s not fooled this time. She reminds him that he said he liked her, so she figured she’d swim with him today. Ji-woon thinks she’s nuts, but she presses on, demanding to know if he’d be able to admit he liked her in front of Hye-ji.
Ji-woon pauses, and Ha-won states that he’s in a complicated love triangle with Hyun-min and Hye-ji. She asks: “Why are you trying to force me into the mix?” Ji-woon answers that complicated relationships are his hobby. Hah, okay.
Ha-won grabs her shirt and declares that she’s taking it off to see how comfortable it is to swim naked. She invites him to strip too, but he promptly walks out. She smirks at his innocence, takes off her shirt, and jumps in with her swimsuit on.
Afterwards, she heads to the shower room and is startled when Ji-woon enters. He says there’s only one in the pool complex and approaches her until she’s backed up against the wall. With one palm on the wall behind her, he urges her to say what she wanted.
Cue the ever-familiar sparkly music and slo-mo as Ha-won falters. No! The shower’s running and water gets in her eye, which Ji-woon gently wipes before cradling her face and reminding her that he meant it when he said he’d steal her away. Gaze unwavering, he tells her to look forward to it before leaving.
Ha-won snaps out of her stupor and curses “that good-for-nothing handsome jerk” for making her heart flutter. She tells herself to get it together and realizes that she couldn’t even broach the mourning rite matter.
Despite Ha-won’s persistence, Seo-woo has no intention of observing. He says Grandpa acknowledged his father only after he died because his grandma was the “concubine,” which meant his father had to live in hiding from the other wives.
Hyun-min’s on the phone with his mother, and he reaffirms his decision not to observe. He warns her not to come to Korea as an excuse to see him. Just then, Ha-won knocks on his window. He’s thrilled she entered his room of her own accord and assumes she wants to discuss her romantic feelings for him.
He places her hand against her heart and asks if the heartbeat feels faster. She replies that it doesn’t, so he brings her hand to his heart, but she says his heartbeat seems arrhythmic, heh. She brings up the mourning rite, but Hyun-min doesn’t intend on observing because someone he dislikes will be there.
Ha-won is determined not to give up. But when Ji-woon comes along and asks her why she’s outside his room, she stutters something about the mourning rite, and his response is a blunt “I have no father.”
She goes back to Seo-woo’s room, but he’s not in. She picks up a notebook filled with scrawled lyrics, and a photo of Seo-woo as a child with his father falls out. She realizes the lyrics are about Seo-woo’s father. Seo-woo emerges from the back and is visibly annoyed by her touching his stuff, but she encourages him to sing his song for his father at the mourning rite.
A primly dressed woman in the living room notices Ha-won and beckons her over. She correctly recognizes her as Hyun-min’s date from Grandpa’s wedding. Ha-won greets her upon learning that she’s Hyun-min’s mother and offers to go get him, but his mom asks if Ha-won can help her instead.
Help her with her shopping spree, that is. Hyun-min’s mother purchases every purse and pair of heels she points to, and Ha-won does all the carrying. Pretty soon, Ha-won’s sweating from toting all the shopping bags around, and Hyun-min’s mother determines she has enough to last her a week. Ha-won suggests she buy toiletries, but Hyun-min’s mother laughs at her naïveté; hotels already provide that.
Ha-won then suggests that Hyun-min’s mother purchase some books to read in her downtime and offers to recommend some titles. Back at Sky House, Bodyguard Lee runs into Hwa-ja and greets her. She’s about to say something to him, but he walks around her and goes about his business. Did… they just have a moment?
Grandpa Kang and Hwa-ja are conversing when Bodyguard Lee enters with Ha-won’s selfie, blown up and custom framed, ha! Grandpa proudly describes it as his first family photo, but Hwa-ja disagrees; it’d only be a family portrait if she and Grandpa were also in it.
Hyun-min’s mother treats Ha-won to dinner after dropping off her shopping bags at the hotel. Meanwhile, back at Sky House, Hyun-min’s puzzled when Ms. Beolgyo asks if he met his mother.
Hyun-min’s mother watches Ha-won enjoy her meal with amusement, and pays her a stack of 50,000 won for helping her out today. Ha-won’s surprised by the payment and tells Hyun-min’s mother that she doesn’t need to be compensated because she simply did what she should have.
Hyun-min’s mother wonders why that is, since they don’t have a special relationship. She firmly draws the line and warns Ha-won that not just anyone can join the family, let alone marry into Haneul Group. Hyun-min’s mother gets up to leave when her son arrives, and Hyun-min doesn’t bother to acknowledge his mother as he exits with Ha-won. Once outside, Hyun-min angrily wonders what Ha-won was thinking, following around a random person and acting as their slave.
Ha-won argues that his mother isn’t some random person, and that she helped her because that’s his mom.
Ha-won: “I thought I was more than just a fake fiancée or a part-timer to you. I thought that maybe we could be friends! That’s why I helped my friend’s mom for a second–”
“What friend?!” Hyun-min shouts. He yells at her for overstepping her boundaries. Flabbergasted by his reaction, Ha-won apologizes for overestimating her significance in his life and walks away.
Ji-woon thinks back to Hye-ji’s discomfort at seeing Ha-won and Hyun-min together and his earlier attempts to “steal” Ha-won. He proceeds to call Hye-ji, but to no avail. Hye-ji’s at her workspace, clutching the blue dress she wore at Grandpa Kang’s wedding. She chucks it into the waste basket, frustrated. Ji-woon witnesses her despair and enters, but his presence doesn’t lift her spirits.
Grandpa Kang is dining with Hwa-ja, but he’s not particularly hungry because the anniversary of his sons’ deaths is imminent. Hwa-ja understands and encourages him to rely on her, even though she may not fully comprehend his pain. She adds that his grandsons are not what he needs right now, but rather a son he can depend on. Oy.
Ji-woon comes home and finds Ha-won thumping her chest, hopping up and down, and making exasperated noises. He asks why she’s doing aerobics late at night, but she says she’s not feeling well, and the medicine she took isn’t working. Ha-won tells him not to worry, but he orders her to follow him.
Ha-won and Ji-woon are perched on a bench. He rubs her arm and wraps a thread around her thumb, preparing to cure her indigestion by pricking her thumb with a needle. She squirms and squeals because it’s been awhile since someone administered this remedy. He quickly pricks her finger and dabs at the blood with a cloth.
Cue the music of a thousand angels as Ha-won watches Ji-woon tending to her finger. She commends his skills, and he discloses that he’d done this for his mother ever since he was eight years old. She thanks him for making her feel better and admits that no one’s ever done this for her since her mother’s death.
Ji-woon mentions her dad as an alternative, but Ha-won answers that he wouldn’t do it for her since she’s not his biological daughter. He points out that there are people like him who’ve never known their dads, and Ha-won agrees. She’d like to see her her real dad at least once, she says.
Their heart-to-heart is disrupted when a burp emerges from Ha-won’s mouth, signaling the end of her indigestion. Ji-woon’s grossed out, but Ha-won gives him the thumbs-up for his magic touch. Just then, her stomach growls, and he pokes fun at her many talents, heh.
Hyun-min feels guilty about his outburst from earlier and calls Ha-won, but she doesn’t answer and isn’t in her room either. That’s because she’s at a convenience store with Ji-woon, preparing instant noodles. Ji-woon brings her two packets of cheese, and she happily adds them in. As they’re waiting in front of the microwave for their noodles, they steal adorable glances at each other.
Her appetite brings a smile to his face and he digs in. Ha-won gingerly brings up the topic of his father and guesses that Ji-woon secretly still wants to see him; he was the man his mother loved after all. Ji-woon tells Ha-won to stop messing around, but she insists he pay his father a visit.
Seo-woo’s bubbly mom arrives at Sky House and showers her son with hugs and kisses. She only gets to see Seo-woo once a year for her husband’s mourning rite, so she plans to stick to him like gum. Seo-woo wants to catch up with his mom, but he has to practice for tomorrow’s recording session, which means he’ll be skipping his father’s mourning rite yet again. He assures his mom that his dad is forever in his heart even if he doesn’t go.
He takes his mom around the house, and they run into Hyun-min. He’s civil when he greets her, but bristles when she asks how his mother is doing. Hyun-min ignores his mother’s call so she sends him a text, ordering him to show up tomorrow.
Ji-woon drives back to Sky House as Ha-won dozes off next to him. He pulls over and adjusts her head so she’s not bobbing side to side. While asleep, Ha-won sadly murmurs that she misses her dad. Ji-woon’s gaze turns sympathetic as he reaches out to touch her face, but Ha-won moves to the side before he’s able to.
They get home, and Ha-won begs him to tell her what she said in her sleep. Ji-woon notices her holding onto his arm, which reminds him of when he held onto her hand to prick her finger, and when he reached out to caress her face in the car. Hyun-min watches them interact from his room, suspicious of their sudden closeness.
Ha-won grabs a water bottle from the fridge, and Hyun-min tries to get her attention by rapping against the wall, heh. She’s not amused after how he treated her earlier, and tells him to mind his own business when he remarks that she and Ji-woon appeared giddy together. He reminds her of the no-dating rule and is incredulous that his fiancée would flirt with his cousin. Ha-won points out that Hyun-min himself said they were nothing to each other and that they certainly weren’t friends; she asks him to draw a clear line so she knows where she stands.
She correctly surmises that his mother is the person he doesn’t want to see. Ha-won won’t force him to make amends with his mother or even observe the anniversary of his father’s death, but she states that his father must be lonely, and leaves it at that.
Ji-woon enters his rec room and thinks back to Ha-won’s words about him secretly wishing to see the man his mother loved. He takes out the charred photographs of his mother, and we flashback to him as a young boy, bawling at his mother’s funeral without his father by his side.
The next day, Seo-woo stands before the mic at the recording studio. Hyun-min’s at home, and Ji-woon’s in his car, and they both appear conflicted.
Ha-won waits in front of the temple, appropriately dressed for the mourning rite. She waits at the base of the temple, anxiously hoping the boys will show up. Grandpa Kang, Hwa-ja, and Bodyguard Lee are the first to arrive and make their way up the steps.
Moments later, Ha-won bows deeply before Grandpa Kang and apologizes for failing this mission.
I think it’s safe to say that we were all aboard the Hyun-min ship, as well as the Bodyguard Lee and Seo-woo tugboats, and suffering from a serious case of second (or third or fourth) lead syndrome, but I have to admit, Ji-woon had some pretty redeeming moments in this episode. Or do I mean pretty and redeeming moments? I didn’t think I’d say this so soon, but alas, the angsty brooder has more to offer, and it helps when every other line of his isn’t “get lost” for once. The finger-pricking and convenience store dinner scenes were adorable, and I think even the viewers who couldn’t stand Ji-woon’s attitude early on may have felt the ends of their lips curl upward ever so slightly.
Obviously, Ji-woon’s original intention was to steal Ha-won away from Hyun-min for Hye-ji’s sake, and the easiest way for him to do that was to use his face and forced proximity. But yawning angels/sparkly chime music aside, I do think Ji-woon’s falling for Ha-won. Her words linger in his mind long after they’ve been said, and he feels compelled to touch and care for her. Ha-won opened up to him about her parents, and so did he (albeit not as much). It seems he’s forgotten the whole point of growing closer to Ha-won (or he’s just freakishly good at faking it) which I’m relieved about, because his brilliant plan to get Hye-ji what she wants is brilliantly ludicrous. He probably thinks he’s being a good friend by going through with this, but I’m surprised he doesn’t see himself as Hye-ji’s tool yet.
It’s abundantly clear that Ha-won is developing feelings for Ji-woon. She pretty much confirmed them when she blamed Ji-woon’s handsome face for her distracted state in the shower room. I groaned when she succumbed so early because I love that fiery spunk of hers, and would hate for it to fizzle out already. But I guess I can’t blame her too much since she’s surrounded by attractive men, and she’s not a robot. As long as she continues to stand up for herself, stay true to who she is, and speak her mind, I’ll still be rooting for her. I just don’t want her to turn into a puddle of spineless mush all because of a crush. Ha-won’s stronger than that. Right?
Hyun-min surprised me with that angry outburst, especially when he shouted that he didn’t even consider Ha-won his friend. What did he see her as then? Fake fiancée or real fiancée, the person you’re about to (fake) marry should first and foremost be your friend. He should know that! I agree she probably shouldn’t have acted as his mother’s servant, but there’s no way she would’ve known his mother would tactlessly pay her off like that.
Speaking of mothers, it seems Seo-woo is the only one who has an amicable relationship with his mother. From what I’ve seen of her so far, she doesn’t seem too obsessed with wealth, although she may be a tad obsessed with her son, which I guess is preferable since Hyun-min’s mother is the complete opposite. It’s interesting how Ji-woon’s mother and Ha-won’s mother passed away on the same date, and I wonder if that’s merely a coincidence, or if their deaths were somehow related.
In terms of missions, Ha-won successfully completed her very first one. Sort of. I guess the selfie proved that all three cousins were sitting around the table, but I don’t recall any of them eating for her birthday celebration. In fact, Ji-woon left almost as soon as he begrudgingly sat down. Technically speaking, the mission wasn’t entirely complete since they all didn’t eat in front of each other, but I guess that’s neither here nor there. Grandpa Kang rewarded her for her success, and now it’s time for mission number two.
This mission is definitely tougher, and it was brought about by Ha-won herself. Instead of begging with aegyo and trying to lure the cousins in, I think Ha-won correctly tried to convince them by first learning about their reasons for not observing and then reminding them that although their feelings are valid, the anniversary of their fathers’ deaths is a family issue, and not just a personal one. She was sensitive to their complicated feelings and aimed for their hearts by speaking from hers, without using machinations or clever ploys. The boys may not have showed up at the end of this episode, and Ha-won may have already conceded defeat, but she did move them to rethink their choice and possibly even consider attending… late.
We saw more of Hwa-ja in this episode since she’s back from the honeymoon, and I am praying that she and Bodyguard Lee harbor zero romantic feelings, because their brief and awkward encounter really puzzled me. Is she scheming to get Bodyguard Lee to fall for her as part of her plan to grab the Haneul Group fortune? Do they have a history? (Say it ain’t so!) Who likes who? Bodyguard Lee is too good for gold digging Hwa-ja. By the way, stone-faced Bodyguard Lee with a rainbow cone hat atop his head and birthday cake sunglasses in his jacket pocket is the greatest image ever.
Ha-won will most likely leave Sky House for “failing” this mission, but Grandpa Kang needs her and the cousins are falling for her, which means she’ll definitely be back.
- Cinderella and the Four Knights: Episode 4
- Cinderella and the Four Knights: Episode 3
- Cinderella and the Four Knights: Episode 2
- Cinderella and the Four Knights: Episode 1
- Cinderella is determined to turn her knights into a happy family
- Shouts, smirks, and song in Cinderella and the Four Knights teaser