Descendants of the Sun Episode 13

 

With the medical team home and the soldiers on their way, life starts to settle back to something close to normal for everyone. Shi-jin and Mo-yeon work to reestablish their relationship guidelines, while Dae-young has a life-changing decision to make. We also get some clues as to the dangerous nature of Shi-jin’s real job, and it seems that it’s every bit as worrisome as we feared.

 

EPISODE 13 RECAP

The doctors are back home, and happy to be so, though they do complain just a bit about things like distance to work, and the cold. They find their coworkers waiting to welcome them back to the hospital, with a reluctant Director Han leading the reception. He particularly complains to Chi-hoon about his mother’s constant harassment, though Chi-hoon is mostly just excited to see his fiancee.

Director Han announces a special bonus to all those who went to Uruk, and literally smacks Mo-yeon with a bouquet of flowers, hee. He’s angry that she didn’t come home on the first plane, as if she did it to personally thwart him, and it looks as if he’s actually, genuinely hurt.

Mo-yeon animatedly tells her friend Ji-soo about the earthquake, and gets teased that it sounds more like a description of her falling in love. Mo-yeon wonders who tattled that she’s dating, since everyone seems more interested in hearing about her captain than her time in Uruk.

She calls Shi-jin later and complains that she already misses being in Uruk, since there aren’t any shirtless singing soldiers or flirtatious captains back home. She tells Shi-jin that she still plans to quit her hospital job and open her own clinic, and teasingly asks if he makes enough to support her if it doesn’t work out. He promises to make a spot for her on Team Alpha if she goes broke, claiming that she has more battle experience than most soldiers.

Mo-yeon receives a sincere apology from Director Han for his propositioning of her — well, as sincere as he’s capable of. Mo-yeon is unmoved and turns in her resignation, though when he balks at accepting it, she says he can always resign himself.

Mo-yeon heads to the bank to arrange for her loan, but the bank teller (a highly anticipated cameo by Yoo Ah-in!) snootily informs her that her loan wasn’t approved. Her change in job status has caused the bank to rethink loaning her the money, which puts her in a bind. If she resigns, she can’t get the loan, but if she stays in her job, she can’t open her new clinic.

Myung-joo is still in the Medicube hospital recuperating, with an attentive Dae-young keeping her company when he can. He wants her to leave the Army and open her own hospital, a much safer occupation, but she claims that being an Army doctor is a lot easier since most soldiers are pretty healthy.

Besides, she argues, she’s so good at being both a doctor and a soldier, her leaving the Army would be a national loss, heh. Dae-young indulgently agrees, just happy to have her healthy.

Shi-jin delivers Myung-joo a transfer order to go back to Korea, which Shi-jin tries to take credit for (Myung-joo: “What influence do you have? You can’t even take care of yourself.” Touche). We see that he actually did convince Lieutenant Park to send her home, by commenting that if she ever finds out that Park wanted to send her to the U.S. Army base when she was sick, she’ll make his life Hell.

Shi-jin has a minor heart attack when Mo-yeon calls him crying a desperate, “Help me!” He breathes again when she just wants his help getting her loan, but when he says it was pretty dumb to resign before asking for a loan, she’s all, Why don’t you extend your deployment, then? Stay there forever!

Her only option is to apologize to Director Han and withdraw her resignation, which Mo-yeon knows will be humiliating. When their lunch table starts to shake violently, the entire Uruk medical team hit the floor, making everyone in the cafeteria wonder why they’re hiding from a jackhammer. Hahahawhoops.

Mo-yeon approaches Director Han armed with flowers and a pretty speech, but he knows right away that this is about her loan. She asks for another chance, which he grants, though he gives her the crappy night shifts and makes her a back-up surgeon in the operating room. Ouch.

Mo-yeon tears up her resignation letter gratefully, and heads down to the OR where a car accident patient is being wheeled in, covered in blood. Her friends wonder what happened to her job on the television show, but Mo-yeon only says that she’ll still be doing that for now.

Chi-hoon and his fiancee visit the doctor and learn that their baby is healthy and due in a couple of weeks. Their eyes go wide when they’re warned to avoid any hanky-panky until after the baby is born… whoops, too late.

Mo-yeon’s rival, Dr. Kim, is curious about the rumors that Mo-yeon started dating a soldier in Uruk, but Mo-yeon refuses to satisfy her curiosity. Dr. Kim pushes, making assumptions about why Mo-yeon was fired from the VIP ward, but again Mo-yeon avoids the subject. She just says that she learned while out of the country that these things aren’t important, what’s important is being happy.

Dr. Kim whines that all Mo-yeon did in Uruk was give some shots and take pictures, telling her to stop bragging. Unfortunately she says this in front of the entire Uruk medical team, who glare at her in disbelief. Dr. Kim scoots away and they all regret not throwing their utensils at her.

Sang-hyun and Ja-ae take a break on the roof, where they discuss a loan she’s paying off to him. Apparently she borrowed the money for her sister’s college tuition, and she’s almost done repaying him.

Back in Uruk, the soldiers are all taking care with their skin again, looking forward to going home. Even Dae-young wears a moisturizing mask, hee. The married Snoopy quips that his wife won’t care what he looks like once the lights go out, making the rest of the soldiers Oooooo at him.

Dae-young goes to sit and think about Lieutenant General Yoon’s offer, allowing him to date Myung-joo so long as he quits the Army and goes to work for her mother’s company. He has to decide by the time they get back to Korea. He’s joined by Myung-joo, and when she complains that being stuck in bed is boring, he makes her at least sit and rest.

She’s in a grumpy mood, complaining that he never even opened his present (Rawr!), but she’s struck speechless when Dae-young simply says, “I love you, Yoon Myung-joo.” It’s so uncharacteristic of him that Myung-joo asks if he’s about to break up with her, but he only says, “I love you. Very much. Forever.”

He reassures her that they’re not breaking up, and a weight seems to lift from his shoulders. I guess that means he’s made his decision. They head back to base, hand-in-hand.

The men make it back to Korea safe and sound, and are given three days’ leave to do as they please. Dae-young immediately starts work on his discharge request, with only a small hesitation before signing off.

Dae-young and Shi-jin make it their mission to drink for the next seventy-two hours, and are soon joined by Snoopy (“My wife got mad when I turned off the lights”). Shi-jin is reduced to tears when nobody answers his calls, so cute.

Eventually Mo-yeon gets wind of their plans and finds them, where Myung-joo has joined them in the meantime. She tells Mo-yeon that this is pretty normal (the boys are practically nonverbal by this point) and heads back to the base. Mo-yeon is disappointed — this isn’t the reunion with Shi-jin that she was expecting.

The boys argue drunkenly over which girl is prettier, the one who just left or “the new one.” Shi-jin naturally thinks this new one is prettier, ha.

Apparently Shi-jin was able to reach his friends after all, and soon their quiet drinking turns into a loud, rowdy party. Shi-jin and Dae-young stay after everyone leaves, fighting to remain awake — they really do mean to just drink for three days straight, don’t they?

HAHA, Sang-hyun is there with them, trying to keep up with their drinking and losing badly. He shares his PPL almonds with Mo-yeon, and Shi-jin suddenly realizes that she’s still here. He seems surprised when Mo-yeon appears to know him, and acts impressed when Sang-hyun says that she’s already his girlfriend. Mo-yeon is not amused.

She takes a drink for strength to put up with Shi-jin, and soon he’s forced to drag her drunk butt home. She aegyos at Shi-jin, wanting him to order chicken and beer, but a noise sobers him up fast and he puts a hand over her mouth. He’s ready to take out the intruder armed with only a scarf, but Mo-yeon recognizes her mother’s coat and bag.

Mo-yeon’s mom pops up from the kitchen floor where she was hiding, to find her daughter drunk as a skunk with a strange man looking like he’s ready to attack. When he introduces himself as Mo-yeon’s boyfriend, she turns the tables on him and plays the, ”You’re my boyfriend? Really?? trick he played on her. She’s adorable when she’s drunk.

Mom is happy when she hears about Shi-jin’s job — good steady pay and he’s often away from home, perfect for her daughter who often spends long hours at the hospital.

Mom is a stitch, she even gets the usually glib Shi-jin twisted up when she asks why he’s being so formal, did he do something wrong? He says no, and she asks why not, and he very nearly promises to be naughty if she wants before he realizes what he’s saying. Okay, Mo-yeon’s mom is awesome.

Shi-jin leaves the cheerfully drunk Mo-yeon to her mother, and meets up with her later when they’ve both sobered up a bit. Shi-jin asks if her mom liked him, but Mo-yeon doesn’t remember anything about their meeting. He gapes when he realizes that Mo-yeon is still drunk, wondering what he’s gotten himself into with her.

He gets a call from his superior officer, and Mo-yeon knows right away that it’s another call that will take him away from her. Shi-jin hangs up with a serious expression, and says that he has to go “to the department store,” their agreed-upon code for when he’s got a dangerous job to do.

He looks terrified, since the last time this happened, Mo-yeon broke up with him. But all she says is that they’ll go see a movie when he returns, and he gives her the most gorgeous smile, looking both relieved and grateful.

Shi-jin and Dae-young suit up for a briefing on their next mission, and they’re surprised to see Lieutenant Park there as the mission commander. They’re given weapons and a special injector pen that guarantees death within ten seconds — their own.

They’re sent to Pyongyang, capital of North Korea, to act as security detail for a meeting between North and South Korean dignitaries. Shi-jin finds himself guarding the door with the same North Korean soldier he fought back when we first met him, which explains how they knew each other by name.

The soldier asks about Shi-jin’s wound and apologizes, and Shi-jin in turn apologizes for getting the soldier demoted, with a wry grin that proves that they actually have a lot of respect for each other. The soldier offers to fight him again any time, and they each note the conspicuous pen the other is sporting.

The guards even go to lunch together, though they sit at seperate tables — wouldn’t want anyone to think they actually like each other. Shi-jin offers to buy his friend lunch when the South Koreans host the second half of these talks, but the soldier says that he’ll be on furlough after this.

When he gets back to Seoul, Shi-jin visits Mo-yeon’s hospital, and finds himself in the elevator with Director Han. He overhears Han telling his assistant that Mo-yeon actually seems to be enjoying her punishment in the operating room, and that he sends her flowers daily, which she returns.

Shi-jin snickers at that, but then Han asks if the assistant has been able to find out anything about her boyfriend. He hasn’t, but he shows han a photo of the whole team in Uruk. Shi-jin points to himself in the photo and says that’s the boyfriend, and Han looks gratified to finally have some info — until he realizes that it’s the guy standing in front of him.

He follows Shi-jin and sizes him up, asking if he’s good at fighting, being in Special Forces. Shi-jin gets up in Han’s personal space and says that he heard about the hotel incident, telling him to watch his back, because yes, he’s a good fighter.

Dr. Kim throws her weight around again, telling Mo-yeon to take her night shift. But this time Mo-yeon just calmly declines, then lights up when Shi-jin arrives earlier than she expected. Dr. Kim gets all flirty at the sight of the handsome captain and angles for an introduction.

Shi-jin admirably keeps his eyes to himself and his tone neutral, and carefully makes a point to say he’s Mo-yeon’s boyfriend. Still, Mo-yeon literally shoves him out of there, leaving Dr. Kim to pout.

They head to the mall, but Mo-yeon is still annoyed that Shi-jin couldn’t tell that she hates Dr. Kim. Shi-jin grins at her jealousy, saying that she wouldn’t be like this if she knew who he just met. Her tone immediately changes when he say she spoke with Director Han, and suddenly she’s all concerned about him.

She tries to change the subject to anything else, but Shi-jin needles her, enjoying her reaction. He finally gets her to stop chattering and gives her a necklace, and though she grumbles that she won’t cheer up just because she got a present, it totally works.

They meet Dae-young and Myung-joo for a double date, and when the waiter notes that they have new girlfriends this time, the ladies shoot eye-daggers at the men. But he’s talking about the stuffed animals, and the guys introduce their new ladies the same way as before (Dae-young: “This is my girlfriend.” Shi-jin: “This is my comrade.”).

Shi-jin reminds Dae-young of the big fight that day, when he fought those gang members to get his phone back because it had a special picture in it. Myung-joo assumes it was a photo of her, and looks through Dae-young’s phone, but doesn’t find one. She does find several photos of cabs, and wonders what that’s about.

Dae-young explains that it’s the same as a photo of Myung-joo to him — they had always gone out for drinks because he wasn’t imaginative when it came to dating, so he could never drive her home. The pictures are all of the license plates of the cabs he sent her home in. When they broke up he deleted all of their pictures, but he kept these. Okay, all together now… Awwww.

Both Myung-joo and Mo-yeon swoon hard, and Myung-joo and Dae-young are so goofy in love that Shi-jin and Mo-yeon bail out. Myung-joo is still cooing over Dae-young’s sweetness as they head out, but she complains when she realizes that Dae-young is taking her home early.

She gets a call that she quickly declines, and claims nervously that she doesn’t know who it was. When her phone rings again Dae-young snatches it, sees that the calls are from a man, and he answers and puts it on speaker phone. HAHA, it’s the same soldier she had spying on Dae-young before, calling to report in again.

Myung-joo gives a weak excuse and Dae-young goes dangerously quiet, then suddenly lunges to her side of the car. I get that this is car PPL, but is that safe? He gets close enough to kiss her and Myung-joo closes her eyes, then he murmurs, “I’m not going to do it. It’s your punishment.” Myung-joo rolls her eyes and turns away, but Dae-young grabs her face and turns her back for a bone-melting kiss.

Dae-young scares the spy half to death when he gets back to base, and makes him work for him this time. He calls Myung-joo and reports that Dae-young is handsome now, and plans to be handsome later, then go to bed while still handsome, HAHA. He adds that her father will be back tomorrow, which makes Dae-young’s ears perk up.

He goes to see Lieutenant Commander Yoon, and finds Myung-joo already there visiting with him. Yoon asks if this discharge request is Dae-young’s answer, which Dae-young confirms, though Myung-joo looks at her father in disappointment. Dae-young learns that Myung-joo knew about this all along, and Yoon tells Dae-young how she asked him, while she was possibly dying, to please not make Dae-young leave the Army.

Dae-young says that that was an agreement between them, not him, and he’s happy to choose Myung-joo even if it means a sacrifice. Myung-joo gets angry and calls him out to speak privately, and he defends that he did this in order to be with her. She counters that it wasn’t easy for her to argue her father out of this, which makes Dae-young pretty furious in turn.

Myung-joo says she only did it because he kept running away, and though Dae-young doesn’t say anything, he looks cut to the bone. She cries that he never said a word while she was fighting her father for them, but he says that every time he ran away, he was fighting, to show that he’s a man of his word. And when it finally paid off, and he had the chance to prove how he felt to her father, she undermined him by going to her father behind his back.

He wanted her father to choose him for his daughter for who he was, not because Myung-joo beat him down. But now he’s only accepting him because his daughter basically blackmailed him when she nearly died, and now, “I can’t be with you.”

Myung-joo agrees, and wishes him a happy life. As she walks away, Dae-young looks shocked, as if he’s surprised she didn’t even try to talk him out of it.

Shi-jin and Mo-yeon finally get a chance to watch their movie, at her place on video. This time it’s Mo-yeon who’s called away, and Shi-jin enjoys being the jilted one a bit too much, insisting that he’ll stay and finish the movie alone like Mo-yeon did at the theater. Mo-yeon puts a stop to that, saying that line only works on first dates, ha.

Team Alpha are called in for the second half of the talks between the North and South Korean officials, and Shi-jin is put in charge as leader of Team Alpha. He catches Dae-young scarfing candy, claiming depression over his breakup, which is news to Shi-jin.

They hear footsteps and turn to see the North Korean soldier, who’s supposed to be on furlough. He’s approaching them with purpose, looking angry and determined, and both of them are too surprised to move.

At the hospital, Mo-yeon is called to the ER for a patient who’s being rushed in with multiple gunshot wounds. It’s the North Korean soldier, and he’s in need of immediate surgery.

Sang-hyun takes over, because another ambulance is arriving with a more critical patient. Mo-yeon actually reels in horror when the ambulance doors open… and sees Shi-jin, absolutely covered in blood.

COMMENTS

Okay, I honestly didn’t see that coming — I was fully expecting it to be Dae-young in that ambulance. Which is pretty naïve of me, because Shi-jin ad Mo-yeon were getting along entirely too well in this episode, and there’s really no way we were getting out of this drama without a serious threat to Shi-jin’s life. We’ve been building up to this for the entire run of the show, but I guess I got complacent, and I wasn’t expecting this so soon. And certainly not from the North Korean soldier, who we’ve seen since Episode One actually holds a lot of respect for Shi-jin. Granted, we didn’t really see what happened, and I wonder if there’s not a big twist coming — possibly someone else shot Shi-jin, and the North Korean soldier got wind of it, and he was actually there to try to help? I’m grasping at straws, but for some reason, I just really want the soldier to be a good guy.

I wasn’t sure what to expect with the show bringing everyone back to Korea so soon, but I really like where we’re going with this. Life doesn’t end when the overseas assignment ends, and I have family members who have been in the military, so I know that it takes almost as much adjustment coming back home as it does going to a new place. Even the medical team are having some trouble getting back to their normal lives — they were changed by their short but dramatic time in Uruk, and it will affect how they interact with the world from now on. Even just hearing certain noises brings back traumatic experiences such as the earthquake, and I appreciate that the show is giving us a chance to see what happens after the team returns home.

There are a few continuity issues making me head-tilt as we watch our doctors settle back into normal life, such as, how did the bank know that Mo-yeon turned in her resignation at all, much less the very day she did it? I’m willing to accept that possibly it wasn’t the same day, but still, how did they know? And if someone is borrowing enough money to open their own clinic, then why would her loan be denied for being “unemployed?” Did they expect her to build her own clinic and keep working at the hospital? Seems as though her quitting her job would be understood — you have to quit one job in order to start another. I suppose at this point I should be used to the fact that you sometimes have to just accept odd leaps of logic in order to enjoy this show, but that one just seems very out-there to me.

I really appreciated that finally, Myung-joo and Dae-young got everything out in the open and really talked. It’s kind of ridiculous that they both made deals with Myung-joo’s father without discussing it with the other, considering that it concerns both their futures. You can’t base a solid relationship on hiding secrets like they did, so it’s good that they got to air it all out (and I love that her father let them handle it without getting involved). It was brave of Myung-joo to admit that she felt like she had to get involved because Dae-young had that bad habit of running away from her, and it’s understandable that she would be scared of his decision, if he had to choose between her and his career.

But Dae-young is right that she should have trusted him, and let him handle his conflict with her father between them. He doesn’t have much, but he has his pride and honor as a man, and I can understand why he feels that he can’t be with Myung-joo under the circumstances she created.

I think it’s clear that Shi-jin and Dae-young’s security detail missions are their “real” job, the one they’ve been alluding to all this time that is apparently so dangerous they can’t even speak about it. So again, I’m surprised at myself that I’m surprised that Shi-jin got seriously hurt, because the show has been practically screaming at us from the beginning that he could be killed at any moment. I just didn’t think that it would be so sudden, so for that, I applaud the show, because I truly was taken by surprise. My heart is still pounding and my stomach hurts a little, which is a good sign. Descended hasn’t been a show to really churn out the plot twists, and as they go, this was a good one. Well done.

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