Korean Fashion, Japanese Fashion, Kpop and Asian Pop Culture Collectibles!

Korean Drama Moon Lovers Scarlet Heart Ryeo Episode 12 Recap and Review

Posted on October 03 2016

Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo

Episode 12 of Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo focuses in on the relationship between Baekah and Woohee.. and gives us one of the sweetest interactions between So and Haesoo. Are you ready for some more heartbreak?


Episode 12 Recap

The King punishes Wang So for siding with Haesoo by sending him on a dangerous mission to Jin to find out how strong their forces are. So accepts the command without hesitation, surprising the King, and only requests him to be lenient on Haesoo who only has Damiwon left.

Once So leaves, the King orders Ji Mong to rid Haesoo to a place where none of the Princes can reach her. “If he cannot throw her away himself, his father will have to do it for him,” The King says to Ji Mong’s shocked expression.

Ji Mong visits the grieving Haesoo and comforts her, telling her Court Lady Oh was lucky – she died with no regrets. He tells her she has orders to leave Damiwon without saying goodbye to the Princes. At this, Haesoo asks where she must go in order to never see them again.

At Ji Mong’s place, So packs Haesoo’s make-up with him. Haesoo comes by, still limping, and the two take a stroll around the lake. He comforts the spirtless Haesoo by encouraging her to forget hardships as soon as she can. “You too, Your Highness,” Haesoo suddenly tells him. “You should forget me, too.” So turns back to stare at her, but only tells her to wait for him until he returns from his mission.

However, Haesoo pulls out the hairpin he gifted her earlier and tells him she won’t wait; after all, he’s getting sent away because he tried to help her. Despite not wanting to leave, he has to. “I remember how happy you were because you got to live in the Palace,” she says. “Now, please learn to differentiate between friendship and love.”

So responds by saying it’s her who ran into bad luck by getting involved with him since it happens to everyone who does. He suddenly grabs her waist and pulls her close. “Still, I won’t let you go. Because with this face, all they can do is curse it anyway.” He leans in for a kiss, but Haesoo quickly turns away. “Dummy,” he laughs. “I said I would get your permission.”

He releases her, but quickly leans in to peck her on the lips. “I lied!” He cheerfully says and takes the hairpin from her hands, telling her he’ll borrow it for good luck. So tells her he’ll return soon and walks off.

I will not be waiting. Though you risked your life for me, though you called me your person, I cannot do it,’ Haesoo thinks to herself as she watches his back. He turns around and gives a cute wave. ‘I become afraid every time I wait. I know I have feelings for another, so why is it that I can’t let you go and ignore you?

Sometime later, Wook sees a limping Haesoo. He hesitates to call out to her and chooses to walk away instead. Haesoo, turning around, watches in heartbreak as he walks away from her.

On route to Jin, So puts his mask on.

Back at the Palace, Ji Mong sends a dejected Haesoo off.

Later, Jung abruptly barges into Wook’s room and alarmingly reveals Haesoo’s disappearance. “She couldn’t have been kicked out, right?” Jung mumbles in panic.

Wook rushes to Haesoo’s bedroom in Damiwon Palace. It’s empty. “Soo… Soo,” He repeats her name and cowers in the corner of her room, utterly dismayed.

Yeonhwa meets with Queen Yoo, who asks if it was her doing that Court Lady Oh is now gone. “I’m sure you wanted to get rid of her, too,” Yeonhwa says. Queen Yoo tells Yeonhwa she’s almost like a daughter she bore herself; they should get along. At this, Yeonhwa brings up the miscarriage incident that caused her mother to be exiled, “It is you, Your Majesty, who killed the woman that the King loves most. I cannot be close to you who could be caught and kicked out at any moment.” Burn.

Queen Yoo laughs and tells her she’s in the same boat, but Yeonhwa says she drank the poison herself so no one can doubt her. She threatens Queen Yoo to never make her Mother get on her knees again and leaves.

Once Yeonhwa leaves, Yo comes out and tells Queen Yoo this is why he can’t help but like Yeonhwa. Queen Yoo tells him she’s dangerous and has more ambition than a man does. She warns him to stay away from him, but he tells her she’s fun. Queen Yoo changes the topic and asks Yo if he met with his Uncle, Wang Shik Ryeom.

Yo reveals Shik Ryeom agreed to support him whenever he needs it, but in return he wants to make Seokyeong the capital city (present day Pyongyang). Queen Yoo is shocked at this.

One Year Later (Taejo Year 26) *Whoa, I was not expecting 1-year time skip!*

Wook and Jung encounter Yo, who is accompanying families from rural cities. When Wook asks what’s going on, Yo reveals the King has 10 instructions to give before he dies – it could be the second son rather than the first who takes the throne. Many believe the King may choose him. Jung says he doesn’t believe it.

Through Yo, it’s revealed Jung has been getting rid of the pirates and hasn’t been visiting their mother in the past year. “I am living just fine, so don’t worry. Mother has you, doesn’t she?” Jung tells Yo. My boy Jung is growing up!

Yo tells Wook that Jung has changed since hanging around him and leaves. Jung voices his concern that Yo will only hurt himself with greed. “I suppose we shall wait and see,” Wook says and the two leave as well.

Baekah scolds Woohee on performing her final sword dance move wrong, snapping her out of her daydream of assassinating the King during a performance. Baekah asks why she would even have her knife pointed outward since she’s supposed to be winding it inward. “You always get it wrong in the same place,” Baekah mutters.

Woohee wants to practice some more, but Baekah talks her out of it. He gets close to her, causing her to get flustered. Baekah tells her he has to go as ‘his lady’ already prepared food for him. At this, Woohee inquisitively asks if he’s married and an intrigued Baekah asks why. “Does it bother you that I’m married?” He questions teasingly. At this, Woohee plays it off but timidly asks if he’s been married a long time. Does he have children, too?

Teasing her, Baekah says he’s been married for more than 20 years and he has a great son! LOL! “There is a wife. It’s my father’s wife. My mother is waiting, so I must get going,” he confesses. Realizing she’s been tricked, Woohee pretends to slice him with her swords. The two banter playfully. He tells her not to overdo her practicing before leaving. She smiles.

Yo gives Yeonhwa a box containing a ring and proposes again, “Once I get the throne, I will divorce my wife and make you Queen.” At this, Yeonhwa says his current wife’s father is the Minister of the Left Park Young Gyu. She asks if he thought she’d believe such a lie that will cause him to rid a close associate.

Yo tells her Park Young Gyu is originally from Later Baekje – he needs that support before he becomes a King. Afterwards, however, he’ll be a bother. Yo takes her hand, slipping the ring on. He tells her they’re a match made in heaven citing their dark and cunning personalities.

Just then, Wook walks in and tells Yo that people may start talking due to his frequent visits. “As for you and I, do not forget that we are complete opposites,” Wook adds. Yo tells him he’s here to see Yeonhwa and they have cause now because of the 10 instructions the King will leave. Snidely, he tells Wook they should attack the King now; it’d be a hassle if the Crown Prince ended up on the throne!

“Still, I will not do something so immoral. How can a child kill his own parent?” Wook replies. At this, Yo maliciously asks that since a father is willing to kill his child, why can’t a child do it? He starts laughing, saying he’s joking, and warns him to not forget his promise to support him, not the Crown Prince. “Of course,” Wook says.

After Yo leaves, Yeonhwa asks Wook why he’s acting as Yo’s shadow instead of taking the throne himself. “If you push the Crown Prince out now, you will be a traitor even while on the throne,” Wook reveals. However, a traitor who kills a traitor becomes a hero.” He explains it’s better for him to be in Yo’s shadow for now; a loyal shadow. If Yo ends up betraying him, Yeonhwa can help him. His eyes linger on Yo’s ring on Yeonhwa’s finger, “That ring… it suits you very well, Yeonhwa.”

“Are you telling me to become a hostage?” Yeonhwa asks in shock.

“Colleague, collateral… use a term that makes you feel better,” Wook tells her. “We are heavily indebted to one another, are we not? You should risk that much.”

Sometime later, we see Haesoo now working as a Gyobang water maid, the lowest place in the Palace. She and a group of girls are washing clothes by the river. Some of them are gossiping about the Princes: the 14th Prince cutting pirate throats like he’s cutting flowers and how the King made him a general… and the 8th Prince’s possibility of becoming King; all the power families with daughter put in requests to marry him!

Suddenly, one of the girls asks Haesoo if she ever saw the Prince given her previous standing in Damiwon Palace and pesters which Prince is the best. Lifeless, Haesoo tells them to not talk about the Princes – it’s easy to get in trouble that way. Annoyed, the girls think she’s talking down on their position as water maids.

They berate her and bring up the rumor of her causing Damiwon’s Court Lady Oh to die. The girls call her an unlucky wench, declaring anyone who gets involved with her is stricken with bad luck, and toss her basket of clothes in the river.

Suddenly, Wook and Jung walk by. Wook is stunned to see Haesoo, but quickly walks away. Jung chases after him. Wook asks if Jung deliberately tried to show him Haesoo by taking that unfamiliar path. Jung asks if he’s really going to leave her in that state despite a year already passing. “She’s a Gyobang water maid, the lowest place in the Palace. Why should I care?” Wook asks coldly.

Jung reveals he knew Wook was in love with Haesoo, so there has to be a reason he’s acting that way. At this, Wook tells him he needs to survive, too – it was the King who kicked out Haesoo. One cannot go against the King. “You should be careful as well. Don’t forget you can be thrown out of the Palace for one small mistake,” Wook tells him and leaves.

Exasperated, Jung can only sigh.

That night, Haesoo eats lifelessly by the river and is startled by the appearance of Wook. The two stare at each other for a moment before Haesoo gets up to face him. He asks if her leg is still unwell; Jung told him he’s been sending her medicine.

She tells him it only hurts when she works too long or if she’s by the water, “I’m alright.” He asks if she’s upset at him… if she hates him.

“I missed you,” Haesoo answers. Wook tells her he couldn’t come to see her because he couldn’t promise her anything. “Because I’ve become so useless… because I cannot do anything for you.”

“I still missed you,” Haesoo tells him. Wook explains he couldn’t get her back because the King’s anger was too great over Court Lady Oh. Because of that, he couldn’t dare bring up marriage. Haesoo suddenly cuts him off, “Did you miss me? Even once? Did you ever miss me?”

“Every day. I longed for you every moment,” He finally says. “That’s all I need then. That’s enough,” Haesoo softly says. He tells her the situation will get better now; once he gets more power –

Haesoo cuts him off, “Don’t overextend yourself on my behalf. Don’t put yourself in danger.” She looks at him with tears, “I have seen enough of that.”

He tells her to not get hurt and to not make him feel sorrier than he already does. He turns and leaves. Tears fall from Haesoo’s eyes as she watches him go.

So returns from his mission! He reports his findings – Gaozu has died and his nephew, Yonghe, is leading now. It seems like they soon will be going to war with Khitan over a territorial dispute and there are many conflicts over the succession of the throne. So comments he doesn’t think they will succeed.

The King laments that this means Khitan will be starting to dominate. He orders So to visit Khitan next. “I do not want to,” So instantly objects.

At the King’s ire, So tells him he broke the promise he made to him when he left for Jin, so he cannot comply. “You still have feelings for that girl?” The King furiously asks. “A king must be able to throw anyone away for the sake of his family or this nation! You should thank me for throwing her out for you!”

At this, So tells him he’s not the King nor will he become one and warns the King to not tie a noose around his neck if he wants even one more ally for the Crown Prince. He, too, will live like a person now. So leaves despite the King’s fury.

Grand General Soo Kyung tries to calm him down by saying children all think they were raised on their own and act out due to that. The King chuckles, saying So should’ve came at him like that to begin with, surprising Soo Kyung.

“Now he will not lose no matter who he fights,” The King says. “He has to be at that level in order for me to close my eyes in peace.”

At this, Ji Mong asks why he’s saying such things about death when his star is still bright. Regardless, the King knows his death is near and tells them to prepare themselves.

Haesoo hangs up cloth to dry. She sees So’s figure through the cloth, but it disappears. Rubbing her eyes, Haesoo turns back and continues to hang up the cloth when she senses him again.

“You never did listen,” So voice sudden says. “I told you to stay put at Damiwon. Doing physical labor suited you better than being a court lady anyway.” Tears swell in her eyes as he approaches her and hugs her from behind. “I missed you,” He tells her.

She tells him he shouldn’t be there, but he turns her around and looks at her and her overworked hands. He smiles at her, “Just as always… you are beautiful.” OHMYGOD.

Haesoo, seeing him wearing his mask, concerning asks why he has to cover it again, “Have you forgotten how to prepare the make up? Has your scar gotten more prominent? You hated it so much, so why would you let it…”

So unties his mask and removes it. His scar is still covered by her make-up, “I didn’t take it off so I wouldn’t forget you. I was determined to come back and see you.” WHY IS SO SO PERFECT?

At this, Haesoo tells him she’s a Gyobang water maid now, not a Damiwon Court Lady. Because of this, she’s not at a level where she can meet him. “You have returned safe and sound,” Haesoo says. “You know that I am doing well. That’s good enough.” She limps away.

But, of course, So chases after her. He tells her this isn’t where she should be. He tries to take her away, but Haesoo lashes out saying to just leave her alone.

“I am only here like this because I can neither die nor live,” Haesoo’s emotions overflow as tears swell in her eyes. “Whether it’s Court Lady Oh, who died because of me, or the scary life in the Palace waiting around every corner, I can forget all of it if my body grows weary.”

So, looking concerned, tells her he will watch over her just like how she helped him. He will help her forget it all, even without living a hard life. Crying, Haesoo asks him, “Even if the person I want to avoid most is you, Your Highness?” NOO!

So is taken aback as she continues, “When I meet you, I recall everything I want to forget. My heart starts to pound with anxiety because I worry something might happen. I get scared and nervous when I’m with you and yet… you want me to come with you?” She laughs. “Are you trying to kill me? Go back. I’m living just fine. I can survive. Your Highness… Please live in peace. Do not hate or hold grudges. Forget everything. Then no one will get hurt.”

She leaves as So can only watch in silence.

Eun and Soon Deok exchange playful banter on his studies. She ends up drawing on him. LOL! He won’t let her draw on his left hand though – it’s Haesoo’s. An awkward silence falls between the two and she quickly turns away. “You’re not crying are you?” Eun cutely asks. Suddenly, a knife! She pulls Eun out of harm’s way and her hair unravels dramatically over Eun’s face. It turns out the knife thrower is none other than her father, Soo Kyung!

Soo Kyung looks disturbed by Soon Deok’s concern over Eun.

Ji Mong visits Haesoo.

The doctor is horrified at the King’s pulse, but the King tells him he’s already aware of his condition. Ji Mong pours the disinterested King some tea, telling him a new court lady made a new mixture.

Exasperated, the King drinks the tea, “Did that girl make it?” Ji Mong instantly tenses up and apologizing, saying he only wanted to bring his appetite back. He orders Ji Mong to bring Haesoo to him.

Yeonhwa looks at her ring and ends up asking So to marry her. So, confused, doesn’t understand what she means. She repeats her request.

Haesoo is brought to the King. He sips on her tea. As Haesoo looks at him, realizes he looks just like how her Grandpa looked before passing away. She doesn’t know which year Taejo passes away, but she’s sure he doesn’t have much time left.

“You are thinking I don’t have much time left,” The King reads her thoughts. “You definitely are different. Where did you come from?” He admits to looking into her after what happened with Court Lady Oh and can only conclude she became a completely different person. “Who are you?”

 “I…” Haesoo hesitates. “I… I am…”

Back to where So is, he tells Yeonhwa he’s not the type of person and is the opposite of the kind she wants. She says she knows this, which is why she kept her distance. Regardless, there was something she didn’t know – she is a girl, too. “I have loved you for a long time. I am destined to be with you.”

The King asks Haesoo if she knew his 4th son, So, was born with the star destined to become a King. Haesoo looks at him, shocked. The King continues to say he concludes that she is similar to Ji Mong – she knows the future that they don’t. “Even so, do not get involved,” He tells her.

She asks him to send her far away because she can no longer handle living here. He tells her to close her eyes to things she can see. If she can’t keep silent, she will be in the same situation no matter where she goes. The King laments at how Crown Prince Moo and So are both destined to become Kings – no one knows what will happen in the Palace. “You will be observing all of it,” The King tells her. “Do not get so hung up on the future that you lose what you have now. Soo Yeon called you her daughter. So you are a daughter to me and that is why I am giving you this advice.”

Haesoo leaves, dazed. She looks behind her to the sound of fighting, but there’s no one there. She drowns in a sea of sounds of swords clashing, yelling, shouting and disarray.

Baekah panics over Woohee’s sword dance injury and discovered scars along her wrists. He asks what’s wrong, but realizes he shouldn’t and asks if he can hold her instead.  Despite shaking her head, he pulls her into an embrace and tells her he’s sorry for not being there when she went through a hard time. She tells him it was from before meeting him, but he says that’s why he’s sorrier. He tells her he only wants good things to happen for her now and to make her happy. Woohee tears as he tells her to trust him.

She pulls away and tells him she never had those expectations of him and leaves. Baekah laments that he still has more to confess.

Haesoo runs into tearful Woohee and asks if she’s upset about something – did something happen with Baekah? It’s revealed that Haesoo didn’t tell Woohee Baekah’s true identity as a Prince. Haesoo tells Woohee that Baekah is a good person. Woohee laments if she were her old self, she would never had met him. Now that she’s in this position, she ended up meeting him.

Haesoo tells Woohee he’s only coming here because of Woohee, so to not push him away. At this, Woohee reveals they won’t be getting closed because she will leave soon. Surprised, Haesoo asks where to. Woohee tells Haesoo some things are better left unanswered; that way, if something happens, none of them will be in a difficult situation.

Woohee brings up the peace gathering which is taking place tomorrow. Haesoo agrees to make her look pretty. “I want them to see me once and never be able to forget me,” Woohee says. “Make me look that way. That’s how I want to be remembered.” Uh oh.

Elsewhere, Yo asks the Minister if “the girl” is prepared for the peace gathering tomorrow. The Minister reveals that said girl is full of hatred for the King. Yo says this must be kept a secret from her mother because despite hating the King, she also loves him. UH OH!

Yo and Wook meet with the King, whose health is clearly deteriorating. Ji Mong advises him to cancel his appearance at the Peace Gathering and Yo chimes, agreeing with Ji Mong. It’s something he usually doesn’t attend, but is only going because of the powerful families attending. Although his Uncle is attending, Yo says he can tend to him while the King rests. Yo and Wook exchange glances. Wook then advises the King to attend to show how healthy he is. He can attend just briefly, just to stop the rumors.

The King agrees with Wook.

The King is at the peace gathering! Everyone in attendance enjoy the performances.

Haesoo runs into So, who returns her hairpin and suddenly asks for them to get married. Surprised, Haesoo can only look at him speechless. So explains himself, “If we get married, you can leave the Gyobang and Palace. Let’s do that.”

Haesoo says she can’t do that and So tells her that if she really doesn’t like him, they can divorce once they leave the Palace. “I will do that for you, so let’s leave.”

Haesoo tells him he has a lot of work to do and doesn’t need to leave because of her. “And the King,” she continues, “worries and thinks a great deal about you.” So tells him he’s constantly testing his children as a King before a father. He continues to tell her he doesn’t want to be by his side.

“What if… you were to become King, Your Highness? Would you still leave?” She asks.

“If I were King, would you leave with me?” He asks. “It was hard to travel as an ambassador. I often felt very free. I thought of you every time. I want you to feel freedom like that. I want to be with you in peace, with nothing getting in our way.”

“If that can’t happen, being King or whatever else has no meaning to me,” So finishes. He puts the hairpin in her hand and asks her to come with him again, “You are my person, after all.” Haesoo looks at him and he smiles. She says no, though, and reasons she cannot marry him to leave the Palace. She turns to leave and sees Wook and runs off. So chases her, but is stopped by Wook who has overheard their conversation.

“A prince marrying a water maid?” Wook asks in disbelief. “Don’t manipulate Soo with such lies.” At this, So tells Wook that if he says it’s marriage, it’s marriage. He brushes off Wook’s hand and is about to leave when Wook starts to talk, “She was put in danger all because of you.” He continues to argue that Haesoo ended up here because she got mixed up in a fight between him and Queen Yoo. It started with him, “Now you want to marry her? I cannot forgive you.”

“I feel the same way,” So says. “I gave you everything you needed to prove Haesoo’s innocence. In the end, you couldn’t do it. Your uselessness makes me shake in anger.” WOW, savage. They grab at each other's collars.

Back at the peace gathering, Woohee starts her performance. Yo and the Minister look intrigued as Woohee dances. Baekah arrives and Woohee, in the middle of her performances, spots him and realizes he’s a Prince by his robes.

The King looks sickly. Baekah looks at Woohee and realizes something’s wrong. He pieces together her “wrong moves” during their practice session and realizes it was the finishing move to the King’s assassination. Just as she’s about to perform her finishing blow, Baekah jumps in front of her and the sword impales him, much to her horror. OHMYGOD.

Back at where So and Wook are at each other's throats, So tells Wook to stop pretending to care about her and to just keep turning his back on her like what he’s been doing. Gripping his clothes, So sees Wook wearing armor. (At least, that's what was implied to me). 


Episode 12 Review

Okay, please tell me Woohee didn't actually impale Baekah. PLEASE. Is that wishful thinking? Baekah is one of my favorite Princes in this series given his interactions with Haesoo and especially So. Imagine how broken So will feel?! He just admitted last episode (was it?) that Baekah and Haesoo are the two most important to him!

It's heartbreaking to see how broken Haesoo has become after Court Lady Oh's death. It's heart wrenching! I miss spunky Haesoo.. and hope we'll see that side of her again. In the meantime, I'm loving the care and concern So has for her.

As for Wook.. I.. I really want to like his character, but his likability meter continues to plummet episode by episode (I already voiced my thoughts on him in the previous episode recaps, but I loved how So called him out on being useless). I can't fathom how he was able to leave her to be bullied and teased by the water maids. I mean, c'mon, Wook! He could've easily stepped into intervene, but he just left. Wook and Haesoo's reunion/confrontation absolutely broke my heart for Haesoo as well. All she wanted to hear from him wasn't excuses or explanations, but for him to tell her he missed her. And he didn't even say it until she asked him!

I love how Wook's reunion with Haesoo was contrasted with So's, who instantly told her he missed her. It was the sweetest thing and you can tell his words really resonated with her with how she teared up. And, of course, her instant concern over So's scar was both endearing and telling for her feelings. That reunion scene between them was my favorite sequence in this episode! I just have to give him so much credit for taking a good look at her, taking in her worn out expression and tattered body and smiling, telling her, "as always, you are beautiful." That was the most romantic scene between them yet.

I'm nervous for the next episode because of all the possibilities.. what will happen to Baekah?! To Woohee (clearly being manipulated by Yo and the Minister)?! Please, please, please let precious Baekah be okay! I'm sick of Yo and his behind-the-scenes scheming wrecking everyone. Someone needs to take him and Queen Yoo out of the picture as soon as possible.. although it seems like Wook has ulterior intentions to snatch the throne as well now. This is literally game of thrones K-drama style!


Pin It


  • StarberryKoko.com: October 05, 2016

    @Areli: Yes! Haesoo is definitely conflicted. She’s still in love and loyal to Wook in this episode, but So’s affection for her is moving her heart. It’s impossible for her to get over Wook so quickly (that will just make her seem fickle) AND they technically haven’t ended their ‘relationship’ yet, so I’m glad the writers are showing how loyal Haesoo is.

  • Areli: October 05, 2016

    I got whiplash with Hae Soo this episode…
    She went back and forth with her emotions and feelings!

    But your recap made me understand that she is struggling with her conflicting heart going towards So, while still being in love with once upon a time, charming, Wook.

    She doesnt wants to use him (So)as an exit, hurting him.
    On another note, Yeon Hwa is vicious! She is worst that Queen Yoo…

Leave a comment

Recent Posts

Join Our Mailing List