I don’t know if we can handle the truth; certainly some will have difficulties perhaps beyond endurance. (And of course, this means spoilers.)
I left this episode with mixed emotions, most of them involving sadness for just about everyone involved.
I was troubled that it was Reaper who revealed the secret of the sword to Eun-tak; I don’t think it was his secret to share. Of course we didn’t hear him explicitly tell her the details, so perhaps his silence let her intuit the gist of things, having had recent events to think through, like the farewell gifts, the reluctance of Shin to let her do it, and the sadness in his eyes. But of course she’s going to be hurt immeasurably; this is the man she’s come to love. He is her new foundation in this world. Life without him will not have meaning, hot baseball-playing young first love oppa notwithstanding.
Reaper is just minutes away, or so it seems, from finally learning his past transgressions and identity; that he was indeed the boy king.
Will this make him run from or with Sunny (like the reaper in the gossip passed on by the friendly reaper who recognized his wife from a past life and went on the lam from the law)?
Or will it be Shin who pieces the puzzle together? He was very interested and concerned as to Reaper’s reaction to the painting of his dead sister… It would be fittingly painful for Shin to reveal Reaper’s painful past to him, just as Reaper has revealed Shin’s painful secret to Eun-tak.
We now know who granny/hotty is; she’s Samshin, the goddess of birth and life (and I confess to having read her details in the drama credits on Dramawiki just to figure this out). She’s the one who chooses who’s born and their life’s path. It was a brutal reality for Shin to learn from her that Eun-tak or he must die; she was put here on earth for this purpose and without this purpose she must die. The question posed to Samshin by Shin was a really sad and poignant one – just as Samshin goddess was responsible for giving life to and protecting Eun-tak, was he not also her child and someone she should care for? He’s raised the question a few times – has he not been punished enough? Does he deserve no happiness?
Of course, what’s still unanswered is just why he’s being punished. Why did the boy king banish him, was he afraid that he was too powerful? It seemed clear that Shin was a loyal subject at that point – it was only in returning to the court that he appeared to be doing something treasonous in disobeying the king’s order to remain exiled. We need a few more details here.
One thing struck me about Shin – he kind of reminds me of the David Tennant iteration of the Time Lord in Doctor Who. He’s merciful and just when people are deserving, but not above meting out justice with a hard fist when earned. There was one particular episode of that series in which David Tennant reveals that being a Time Lord means being a harsh judge at times, and it was one of the best moments of that series, taking it out of the goofy Tom Baker era.
Of course it moves things along that Reaper now knows where Eun-tak works (and has developed a taste for chicken ;-)) and therefore can expand the details of the story a little further. It never gets old watching Shin get jealous, nor protective of Eun-tak. And we did get to enjoy her growing admiration for him (and love) as she discovers him in his acts of goodness (Subway will save your life!), and takes him to task for his ‘idleness.’