Episode nine starts with Il Hwa deciding to go all out against the fight with Gaya. They are quite evenly matched and both land hits on one another. Meanwhile Hong SIk wakes up from being knocked out and asks the Dobi member watching over him where the keys are. The Dobi member breaks down and tells Hong Sik, Poong Cha’s last words. Both sob desperately for the loss of their brother. Hong Sik cannot contain his sorrow.
In the last round of the fight, Gaya purposefully exposed her weak spot so that Il Hwa could land some hard punches. She then voiced, “I lost” so that Il Hwa could take Jung Tae away. Il Hwa realizes that Gaya loves Jung Tae and approves of her foresight to save the man. Meanwhile, Shinichii is very suspicious of Gaya’s loss. As Il Hwa and his servant are carrying Jung Tae home, they are accosted by about 30 men wanting a fight. However, Il Hwa deduces that they are not acting out of Gaya and Shinichii’s order because they wouldn’t do something so cowardly. They realize that their headquarters in Dandong is being attacked and is lost now too. We see that old Gramps and Aka have destroyed the place. They have taken over the gateway to China.
Meanwhile, Il Hwa and his servant are trying to fight off the band of men in the forest themselves. Unfortunately, it looks like they loosing even though Il Hwa managed to beat down a whole lot of them. However, soon Hong Sik and the Dobi gang show up and join the fray, helping the fallen Il-Hwa. The group manage to destroy Il Gook Hwae’s goons. Hong Sik is worried for Jung Tae’s health, not wanting another loved member dead. Il Hwa decides to take Jung Tae to Daeryeon knowing that he can’t go back to Dandong. Hong Sik wants to take revenge, but Il Hwa says it is not time yet. Il Hwa wants to wait until Il Gook Hwa goes to conquer Shanghai before initiating rebellion.
Shinichii scolds Gaya for letting Jung Tae go, however Gaya is taking none of it and says why should she listen to a subordinate who hides his true intentions anyways. Old gramps comes a visiting in the middle of their argument. He commands Gaya to make Manchuria into an opium route and tells her that he will make their emperor a puppet of the Japanese government. To China, the Emperor is important above all else and he tells her to be wary of that fact. Furthermore, he feeds her information that Jung Tae’s dad, Shin Young Chool visited Shanghai the day that Princess Ryoko, her mother died, implying that his dad killed her mother.
Ggoo pays Shinichii a visit, wanting to be acknowledged by Il Gook Hwa, but instead gets the crap beat out of him while Shinichii looks dispassionately back at him. Ggoo tells Shinichii that he can bring Chung Ah, Jung Tae’s sister in front of him. However, Shinichii doesn’t care and wants to cut his head off before Gaya stops him. Gaya decides to make Ggoo her dog and he kiss her foot. Meanwhile Il Hwa sails away with Jung Tae and Pyeong (his servant) and says that one day the debt Jung Tae’s boss owes to him will be his strength. However, another scene shows us that Jung Tae’s friend Ddol seems to be locked up.
Aoki seems to have recovered well and even receives an award. Ggoo finally gets his wish and is being initiated into Il Gook Hwae. He too has to drink the tea with the sharp scales. He gulps it down and smiles through bloodied lips. His first order is to find Jung Tae for Princess Gaya. In Shanghai, Jung Tae’s father and another ahjussi talk about the Denkai’s greed for land and self preservation. However this ahjussi lies to Shin Young Chool saying that his son and daughter are doing fine in Shineuijoo to prevent him from going back and getting killed by Aoki. In Shanghai, it seems that Shin Young Chool is in charge of a fighting business, but that their guys are getting beat up by the opposition. His second in command decides he wants to take over Jung Tae’s father’s position.
Jung Tae finally wakes up and Il Hwa comments that he heals fast. Il Hwa tells Jung Tae that Gaya has taken over his position and that he can’t go back because there is no one waiting for him back there. Jung Tae reads the letter that Hong Sik wrote to him, who tells him to not give up on Chung Ah. The leader has been sending out letters in bottles for the past three years and has never found her body. He says that they will meet again and to stay alive well. Jung Tae is heartbroken to find out that Poong Cha died and completely breaks down in front of Il Hwa.
Time jump to five years later in Daeryeon, Jung Tae has taken up the job as a sparring partner, but he beats up the opponent too much that they can’t even go out to fight. His manager convinces him to fight in the ring for bets. He agrees to the manager’s surprise. Meanwhile, Gaya is still looking for Shin Young Chul and has managed to injure him while following him. They find each other in an abandoned house and the dying Young Chul tells Gaya what happened that night when he mercy killed Gaya’s father. She figures out that Young Chul wasn’t at fault for her families deaths and vows to take revenge on the person who killed Jung Tae’s father, and her parents. She mercy kills him.
Finally we make a full circle back to the first scene in the drama where he is fighting that brute in the ring. He seems to be losing purposefully so that he and the manager can make money. The female bartender tries to chat him up while he is drinking but is interrupted by the brute. The other guy pours alcohol all over his head and is angry about the rumor that Jung Tae purposefully lost the fight. Because the brute hit the poor bartender, Jung Tae shows his real skills and defeats the other guy easily.
Again, the mysterious ahjussi comes to visit him and tells him that his father was in Boonmong and for him to go to Sannack, Shanghai. As he walks along the road, he is passed a letter…..a letter from Ggoo who tells him he might hear news of his sister. Meanwhile Gaya is planning their next area of conquest while on the train to Shanghai. While Jung Tae is getting off the ship, he hears a girl being bulling by some guys. Of course he beats them senseless before meeting the boss Hiroshi. Hiroshi, a member of Il Gook Hwa, starts a fight, at first with no sword, but then with it when it seems like he was getting beat. The samurai has no chance against Jung Tae’s fists, and Jung Tae decides to take this chance to flee….onto a funeral truck. The truck warns him that Shanghai is a death trap.
Comments: So I’m sure a lot of you have heard that one of the main writers of the drama quit midway through and that people are complaining that the drama was too violent. I though the drama was going pretty well and I hope that the new head writer won’t mess up the original feel. I guess I understand why people are complaining about the amount of fights in the drama, since it is aired on a family channel. This episode made me feel that the show finally started because we have made it back to the beginning scene of the fight from episode 1. The back story was rather long, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. I hope the drama picks up more from this point on.
Lemme know what you guys think of this episode?
Also, on a sad note, Kim Jae Wook who played Soo-Ok has quit the drama! Man, I really liked his character too! With these setbacks, I hope the drama doesn’t fall apart!