Chapter 8: An unseen reunion

A long-forgotten feeling of tension envelops Soyong as she’s left alone with Jo Hwa Jin. They sit across from each other at the low table, waiting for a servant to bring them tea and sweets. Hwa Jin’s stern look is understandable; however, it doesn’t make it any less annoying.

Growing tired from the starting contest, Soyong’s eyes start roaming around the room. It’s well-decorated and Hwa Jin’s paintings are all over the walls. There’s almost too many of them, Soyong thinks. Most of them are paintings of various flowers or portraits. Hwa Jin’s talent is undeniable; it’s especially impressive in the paintings of her husband, Prince Yeongpyeong.

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Chapter 7: Welcome to Oktajeong

Park Yul Mu is new in town and therefore it is his very first time visiting the kisaeng1Kisaengs were women from outcast or slave families who were trained to be courtesans, providing artistic entertainment and conversation to men of upper class. house known as Oktajeong2Oktajeong is a kisaeng house.. The province he had previously lived in had a kisaeng house as well, but it was smaller, with less women to choose from. Oktajeong boggles the mind with its huge estate filled with gardens and ponds and numerous stunning women. The alcohol and laughs spill freely here. Yul Mu likes Hanyang more and more with each passing day.

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  • 1
    Kisaengs were women from outcast or slave families who were trained to be courtesans, providing artistic entertainment and conversation to men of upper class.
  • 2
    Oktajeong is a kisaeng house.

Chapter 6: A Beautiful Name

In Soyong’s dream, she has an uneasy feeling that she is prey in a hunt. She does not dare to look back while she runs for her life through the woods. If she looks back, she’ll be doomed. If she looks back, the masked man will catch her. The woods surrounding her are impossibly thick and she feels like there’s nowhere to go. Soyong is panicking. Soon he will catch her. Soon…

Soyong shudders and hears someone’s voice. A girl cries out and then calls for her.

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Chapter 5: The Wounded Rabbit

“We ask that you consider deposing the Queen, Your Majesty!” the ministers bellow in chorus. Wonbeom had assumed that an appeal like this would eventually appear, but not this soon.

“Do not dare even think about it!” Wonbeom angrily slams the appeal down onto his desk.

“Her Highness the Queen neglects her duties,” the Left State Counselor retorts.

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Chapter 4: Family Bond

Wonbeom strongly believes that the assassination attempt on the Queen failed and that those who prepared the attack were as clueless as him regarding her whereabouts. If they had succeeded, those who organized the attack would have revealed a dead body (Wonbeom shudders at the mere thought) or spread a rumor about it a long time ago. And his ministers would plead to start a new Queen selection.

Since Wonbeom is not willing to choose any new concubines, the ministers are left without any opportunities to advance their careers. It is amusing how those men look down on the women in their families, but will use them at a moment’s notice in an effort to gain power.

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Chapter 3: Only The Sea Knows

Sounds of waves falling on the shore.

The smell of salty breeze.

Cries of seagulls.

Bright summer sun.

And wet sand.

Wonbeom thinks he’s back home where he lived most of his life and this feeling soothes him after a crazy sleepless night.

Everything started when Prince Yeongpyeong leads the limping and sobbing Court Lady Choi into Wonbeom’s study. With a pounding heart, Wonbeom listens to her story about the attacking robbers, and how the Queen ran away to distract them. Court Lady Choi recalls how she eventually found the main road and called for help, but they didn’t manage to find any trace of the Queen or the robbers. After she has finished, Wonbeom and his brother put on their black combat uniforms and with a few trusted guards, they go in search of the Queen.

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