Doom at Your Service: Episode 11
Things don’t go according to plan for our heroine whose family isn’t about to let her run away that easily. Her loved ones are determined to provide the support she needs, even if she won’t ask for it. While our loving family spends some quality time together, the goddess takes a turn for the worst. But she has one last plan to put into motion before restarting her life cycle.
After she cries it out, Dong-kyung and Myeol-mang sit by her little house. She thinks back to her childhood. When little Sun-kyung used to ask where their parents went, she’d say they went to the heavens. She didn’t have an answer for why, though.
Later, she decided they returned from whence they came. Since the stars were the beginning of life, it’s the starting point for all of us. Myeol-mang observes that means everyone gets to reunite in death, and there’s no eternal parting.
He offers Dong-kyung her bracelet back, but she takes his hand instead. They sit in companionable silence. Meanwhile, the goddess waters her newly sprouted flower bud.
At LifeStory, CEO Park storms in, demanding they make Ji-na apologize to the sleazy writer. His ranting doesn’t faze Joo-ik who refuses to call Ji-na in and instead tells CEO Park to deduct the laptop fee from his low salary.
Joo-ik has had enough of CEO Park’s lecturing and childish behavior and announces he’s quitting. CEO Park thinks he’s bluffing and wonders how he’ll survive. “You act like your father owns the building.” Joo-ik retorts that his father does own the building. With that, he leaves.
Elsewhere, Myeol-mang and Dong-kyung spend a lazy day together chatting and eating. He’s an eager listener as Dong-kyung tells him all about how she and Ji-na became friends, how frequently Sun-kyung’s dreams change, and how she got a job at LifeStory for financial independence so her aunt could marry without worrying. Myeol-mang watches her lovingly and realizes with contentment that he’s no longer alone.
Meanwhile, Joo-ik and Hyun-kyu have a competition at the batting cage with the loser having to grant the winner a wish. Hyun-kyu has his eye on Joo-ik’s car, but he’s woefully unprepared and misses nearly every ball; Joo-ik doesn’t miss one and says he’ll collect on his wish later. At home, Joo-ik offers his car to Hyun-kyu anyway, but Hyun-kyu isn’t interested in a handout.
At the café, Hyun-kyu gets a surprise visit from Ji-na. “Let’s date,” she suggests with no preamble. WHAT?! She proposes they go on three dates so she can figure out her feelings. (Do you really have to?) Ji-na stipulates that she’ll call him – he doesn’t get to come over or call on a whim. She warns that she might not call anytime soon, but Hyun-kyu happily agrees to wait.
Ji-na leaves and immediately calls Joo-ik to tell him what she did. They finish their conversation in person since they run into each other on the street. Assuming she no longer wants to see him, Joo-ik suggests they cancel the contract with no penalty. But Ji-na is determined to make it into the Top 10 and has no intention of canceling the contract.
She informs him she’s planning on telling Hyun-kyu about their kiss, but Joo-ik doesn’t think she’ll follow through. He tells her to go ahead if she dares and walks away. In what has become their thing, Joo-ik returns to give her his umbrella because it’s snowing.
When Dong-kyung and Myeol-mang get back to her childhood home, he asks her to forgive him. Soo-ja, Kevin, Sun-kyung, and Ji-na are waiting in the yard. Myeol-mang didn’t want them to worry, so he called her family. Dong-kyung is tensed for a fight, but Soo-ja just hugs her and says they should go inside for dinner.
That night, Kevin and Dong-kyung have an amusingly multilingual conversation where neither knows what the other is saying. Dong-kyung confides in him about her doom dilemma in Korean which he doesn’t understand. But he picks up on a phrase that suggests she’s worried and comfortingly says in English not to worry because they’re family.
He promises to find a great hospital for her, and she despondently responds that not loving everyone won’t work. “I love you too, Dong-kyung,” Kevin replies with a hug. Dong-kyung sighs that her love is “heavy” which he mishears as her thanking him. He says family doesn’t need to thank each other and pulls her into another hug. Ha.
Inside, Soo-ja puts Myeol-mang to work helping her in the kitchen. When she thanks him for calling her, Myeol-mang explains he didn’t want her or Dong-kyung to worry. All Dong-kyung did was talk about her family all day, so he knew she was missing them.
Soo-ja confides that whereas she has a temper, her twin sister was calm and gentle. After losing her “other half,” Soo-ja couldn’t help but live for Dong-kyung and Sun-kyung. But Dong-kyung never opened up to her.
Whenever Dong-kyung was upset, she’d go off on her own. Soo-ja would always find her by the beach like a person without a home. Myeol-mang observes that Dong-kyung returning here must mean she truly thinks of it as home, which makes Soo-ja smile.
While they set the table, Sun-kyung tells Ji-na he’s relieved Dong-kyung isn’t in pain. Ji-na points out that the real issue is Dong-kyung’s heart, not body. She knows how good Dong-kyung is at hiding her feelings and guesses she left so as not to burden them. Sun-kyung struggles to hold back his tears.
He takes a call from Hyun-kyu about work, and Ji-na grumbles that everyone’s working in a café these days. Sun-kyung is shocked to hear she reunited with her ex and is dating him again after wanting to kill him.
When she tells him there’s this second guy she wants to kill now, Sun-kyung gets confused. “Why are you dating Number 1 when you like Number 2?” he asks. She usually only reacts that strongly to guys she has feelings for. Ji-na has no real retort for that, so she just yells at him instead.
At dinner, Dong-kyung gets emotional at how her family keeps putting meat on her rice bowl for her. Myeol-mang smiles at the warm family moment and is surprised when Soo-ja puts some in Myeol-mang’s bowl as well.
The next day, Dong-kyung spends some time with Ji-na and sighs at her failed attempt to run away. “I thought I ran away, but after arriving, I realized everything I love is here.” Ji-na won’t run away with her but vows to always fight by her side.
Ji-na brings up the incident with the sleazy writer and how she smashed Joo-ik’s laptop. Echoing her brother, Dong-kyung asks if Ji-na likes Joo-ik. She’s shocked when Ji-na says she’s dating Hyun-kyu again who happens to be the owner of the café in Dong-kyung’s work building.
“What are you going to do now that you like Team Leader Cha [Joo-ik]?” Dong-kyung asks with concern. Ji-na insists that’s not true, but the lady doth protest too much.
Meanwhile, the goddess collapses at the hospital. Myeol-mang feels it and tells Dong-kyung he’s going to go check on the goddess. Dong-kyung doesn’t want him to be alone, so she promises to follow him there shortly.
When the goddess wakes, Myeol-mang is by her bedside. Seeing her like this reminds him why he didn’t want to love and eventually face the pain of loss. She pats his hand and tells him it’s all according to plan – she’s meant to go through this life and death cycle for humans.
Myeol-mang finds Dong-kyung waiting for him in the hall. She takes his hand and walks him out. He reveals that the goddess doesn’t have much time left. As they approach a crosswalk, a little boy wanders out into the road, unaware of the moped speeding toward him.
Dong-kyung is surprised when Myeol-mang rushes forward and pulls the kid out of the way in the nick of time. He’s not supposed to interfere, but he couldn’t do nothing while Dong-kyung was watching. Ever since falling in love with her, he can’t help finding humans lovable, and he’s starting to understand why the goddess likes them so much.
After getting a call from a screaming CEO Park, Dong-kyung marches into LifeStory ready for a fight. Instead, CEO Park drops to his knees and begs for her help. He blames her for making all the authors want to quit and, at the very least, wants her to convince Joo-ik to come back.
When Dong-kyung doesn’t immediately agree, he threatens to sue Ji-na for the incident. Dong-kyung doesn’t even know where to find Joo-ik, so CEO Park whispers that he’s the building owner’s son and lives on the upper floor.
Meanwhile, Joo-ik asks his father for a loan so he can start a company as a “hobby.” He promises to continue looking after the building. His father grumbles about it but agrees, although he charges him interest.
Joo-ik’s father mentions Hyun-kyu’s weird behavior from last time, so Joo-ik explains Hyun-kyu was trying to protect him. When his father chuckles that it was worth it for Joo-ik to “raise him,” Joo-ik complains that he’s not sure – Hyun-kyu is a handful.
Later, Dong-kyung stops by Joo-ik’s and marvels at how rich his family is. Why was someone so wealthy working at a little company like LifeStory? “Because it was close by,” Joo-ik responds pragmatically. But, like her, he couldn’t take CEO Park’s nonsense anymore.
Dong-kyung intuits the usually unflappable Joo-ik must’ve been upset because of something related to Ji-na. He doesn’t deny something is going on with them but changes the topic. He’s planning to set up his own company and offers her a position as a team leader once she’s well. Dong-kyung warns him she wants a high salary.
Next, Dong-kyung stops by Hyun-kyu’s café. Hyun-kyu politely welcomes her as Sun-kyung’s sister and even gives her a coffee on the house. Dong-kyung just keeps staring at him and dropping heavy-handed hints without ever directly mentioning Ji-na. Sun-kyung notices her odd behavior, but neither of the guys figure out the connection.
At home, Ji-na writes a notice that she’ll be stopping her current novel due to “personal reasons.” She thinks of Joo-ik’s advice that she her works need a new male lead and starts writing a new novel called “A Love Like Rain.” Joo-ik reads the first posted chapter based on their kiss in the rain, which ends on the sentence, “I knew then that I wouldn’t be able to avoid him, his love.”
That night, Dong-kyung chats with Myeol-mang on the phone on her way home. Her aunt is out tonight, so Myeol-mang joins their places again. He reads, as usual, while Dong-kyung lays with her head in his lap.
They start talking about old times (i.e., less than two months ago) when they first started living together. Dong-kyung has always been afraid of the dark, but when he considerately turned off the lights for her and slept on the couch near her, she realized that warmth and kindness can be found in the dark too.
Elsewhere, Soo-ja and Kevin go to see “Doctor Lee” about the clinical trial and discover he doesn’t exist. One of the patients overhears and tells Soo-ja the rumors about the ghost doctor. Soo-ja thinks that’s ridiculous, but the woman says it’s either a ghost or a scam. And why would her niece scam her? Soo-ja realizes that’s exactly what happened and suddenly grabs her abdomen in pain.
Outside Myeol-mang’s place, Dong-kyung says she’d like to be the moon in her next life so she can merely exist rather than live. It might not be the case for Dong-kyung, but Myeol-mang says he wouldn’t change a thing. Even if he could go back in time, he’d still choose to meet and love her.
Dong-kyung assures him she doesn’t regret being with him. She shows him the marble from the goddess, sharing her words that the fate of everything within depends on Dong-kyung’s love. At first she was afraid, but not anymore. She gives Myeol-mang the marble.
After getting a call from the hospital, Dong-kyung rushes to see her aunt and fusses over her, but it’s only a stress-induced cramp. Soo-ja confronts her about the fake doctor and insists Dong-kyung be admitted to another hospital.
Dong-kyung breaks it to her aunt that, no matter the treatment, she’s going to die. Soo-ja can’t accept that and breaks down, sobbing and screaming for Dong-kyung to be admitted. In broken Korean, Kevin gently tells Dong-kyung that Soo-ja needs rest, so she should leave for now. He promises to call when Soo-ja calms down.
On her way back to the lobby to meet Myeol-mang, Dong-kyung runs into the goddess. Exhausted and at her limit, Dong-kyung asks for the goddess’s help. Knowing about her own death and having to explain to her family is too much.
The goddess can’t save her life – she’s destined to die – but she can erase Myeol-mang and Dong-kyung’s roles in each other’s fates. Dong-kyung and Myeol-mang will forget each other, and their contract will be void. She’ll no longer have to choose between the world and the person she loves.
With limited time before her own death, the goddess urges Dong-kyung to choose quickly. Downstairs, Myeol-mang drops the marble which shatters on the ground. Dong-kyung stares at the goddess, weighing her options.
When the goddess mentioned the reset several episodes ago, I assumed she was intending to reset Myeol-mang. But given her focus on humanity, it makes sense that she’d offer this choice to Dong-kyung. Knowing Dong-kyung, she’ll choose the reset. She’s been desperate for a way to save everyone, and this allows her to entirely circumvent the contract. It does seem kind of wrong that Dong-kyung gets to make this decision unilaterally, though, since it also directly affects Myeol-mang. He was miserable before, so I don’t think he’d be all that grateful to go back to living an eternity of an existence he hated. That’s not even taking into consideration that this reset, from the sounds of it, would eliminate any chance Dong-kyung has for survival. Dong-kyung has been resigned to her own death from the moment she was diagnosed, so I don’t think she was holding out much hope of survival for herself. If she takes the deal, everyone she loves will be safe, and she won’t have the burden of making a difficult choice or knowing exactly when she’s going to die. In theory, at least – there’s no way things will be that simple. In terms of the story, I’m not sure how to feel about this development. A reset could be interesting if done well, but I don’t have enough faith in the writing to have high expectations. That’s assuming it happens at all.
If nothing else, at least the ridiculousness of last episode’s events resulted in more of the family moments I’d been wanting. Today’s episode was really all about the family bond, whether that’s between Myeol-mang and the goddess or the members of Dong-kyung’s family unit. I’m glad Dong-kyung’s family has rallied around her, trying to make her feel safe and wanted. She has walled herself off emotionally for so long, convinced that any negative emotions are a burden to those around her, even though it’s obvious none of her family feels that way. It’s nice to see such a loving multicultural family in dramaland since it’s not that common of a setup. Being part of a multicultural family myself, that mutually unintelligible conversation between Dong-kyung and her uncle was so relatable. It reminded me of similar scenes from my childhood with sometimes hilarious attempts at communication between family members who don’t speak each other’s language. You might not understand what’s spoken, but that doesn’t mean you can’t understand each other as family.
I appreciate how inclusive Dong-kyung’s family is – whether it’s Ji-na, Kevin, or Myeol-mang, everyone who cares about one of their own is welcomed. And I’m always happy to see supportive female friendships like Ji-na and Dong-kyung’s. It’s obvious they genuinely care about each other and have each other’s backs. I just wish Ji-na looked out for herself half as much. I had hoped she wouldn’t give Hyun-kyu the time of day after all his disrespect, but then she went and asked him out! Ji-na, nooo! What does she even find so appealing about Hyun-kyu that she can’t forget him after almost a decade? And now that she is falling for someone else, it’s someone who has treated her just as disrespectfully. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like she’ll be dropping either of these men any time soon. I have the feeling we’re in for more drama from this triangle, particularly with Ji-na’s new
autobiography novel. I’m guessing Hyun-kyu will find out about Ji-na’s pen name and learn of her and Joo-ik’s kiss through the book. What a mess. I wish Joo-ik’s role was strictly as Dong-kyung’s wry colleague because I enjoy their interactions. So long as he’s far from Ji-na, his character is fun.
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