In the first two episodes of Captivating the King, we saw how, from being a loving brother, the king was influenced by people like Kim Jong-bae and how he started hating his brother to his core. Jinhan didn’t know what else he could do to prove his loyalty. He loved his brother, but the king was just not ready to believe that fact. The king was made to believe that Jinhan wanted to dethrone him, and he was just not able to get over his insecurities. So, let’s find out what happened in episodes 3 and 4 and if Jinhan was able to make his brother trust his intentions once again.
Who sent Chu Dal-Ha to Qing?
Chu Dal-Ha, a spy who was sent to Qing, was caught, and the ruler of the kingdom, together with Prince Rui, got to know what the kingdom of Joseon was up to. Qing’s emperor sent troops to the border, and it felt like he would go to war once again with Joseon. Kang Hang-Soon, the Chief State Counsellor, knew that if they didn’t take any action, then the entire kingdom would suffer. We had seen earlier in Captivating the King how the soldiers of the Qing wreaked havoc and how so many innocent people lost their lives. The ruler of Qing demanded that he would only stop if it was revealed who was the mastermind behind the plan and from whom the spy was taking his orders. In reality, it was the king, but Kang Hang soon knew that they couldn’t expose him. So he decided to make the great sacrifice and take all the blame on himself. He knew that there was a possibility that he might not be able to return, but he had no other option. Grand Prince Jinhan said that he would gladly go in his stead, but he knew that the man had suffered enough. He wanted Jinhan to be in the kingdom because he knew that as soon as he left, Kim Jong Bae would influence the king to make Prince Royal his heir. Kang Hang Soon knew that the kingdom deserved a ruler like Jinhan. In the grand scheme of things, Kang Hang soon decided that it was the best possible option they had, and that was the only way he could keep his king and his kingdom safe. So Kang Hang Soon confessed to the crime, and he was taken as a prisoner by Qing. Kang Hang is still alive, and I believe Jinhan will find a way to bring him back to his homeland.
How did Kim Jong-bae manipulate the king?
The king was in such a fragile state of mind that he didn’t know who to believe in. He was mourning the loss of a good friend and confidant after Kang Hang soon took all the blame, and evidently, his mental health worsened with every passing moment. Kim Jon Bae wanted to take full advantage of the situation, so he went to the king and told him that the chief state counselor was plotting with Jinhan to dethrone him. He said that for years, he had been conspiring with Jinhan because he wanted him to sit on the throne. It was the king who sent the spy, but still he believed whatever lies his minister of war fed him with. He called Jinhan and told him that he was a traitor. Jinhan was just trying to prove his loyalty. He had done everything in his power to show the king that he was on his side and that he would sacrifice himself for him, but still, no good came out of it. The king was stuck in a loop, and he didn’t know what he was doing. The illness had made him weak, and now these insecure thoughts have plagued his mind and made his situation even worse. Jinhan cried and pleaded with him to not ruin everything and not let the perpetrators take advantage of the situation, but still, his words had no impact whatsoever. Jinhan didn’t want to be the king, and he was happy helping his brother, but he knew that if he kept on going the way he had been, then everything would be spoiled. Jinhan was well aware of the intentions of people like Kim Jong Bae, and that’s why he feared what fate had in store for his beloved kingdom.
How did Jinhan become the king?
The king was ill for a very long time, and all those negative thoughts were additionally eating him from within. Luckily, Jinhan was around when the king took his last breath. He believed that the medicinal liquid he took poisoned him, but it was not so. His death was caused by his illness. The king said that his last wish was that the Prince Royal be made ruler after him. Jinhan was distraught, and seeing his blood brother die in front of his eyes broke something inside him. The king could never trust him, and Jinhan regretted that fact. The royal funeral was planned, and that’s when something changed inside Jinhan. He had been told by his well-wishers that he was destined to rule the kingdom one day and that he should stop resisting his fate. He finally came to the decision that he wouldn’t let the reigns of his kingdom go into the hands of people like Kim Jong-bae. So, finally, Jinhan decided that he would fight for what he deserved and become the king so that the kingdom could prosper. Jinhan told the council that his brother’s last wish was for him to become king and lead the nation towards a better future. Obviously, Kim Jong Bae wasn’t convinced, and he knew that Jinhan was lying. Jinhan told everybody that he would become king only if nobody objected to his claims. Kim Jong Bae knew that Jinhan was an able schemer, and if it came to it, he could deceive anybody. Kim Jong Bae took Hee-soo into custody, believing her to be a boy and someone who could attest that Jinhan was a traitor, which he considered the enemy state. Kim Myung-ha, Kim Jong Bae’s son, told his father that he would get the confession because he didn’t want the soldiers to harm Hee-soo. Kim Myung-ha knew that Hee-soo was a girl, and he was madly in love with her. He wanted her to be safe at all costs, and that was why he pleaded with her to sign and confess to whatever his father was saying.
Jinhan called the border forces because he had a plan in mind. He knew that Kim Jong-bae would accuse him of being a traitor, and so he had found a way to prove that the confession was forged. Jinhan had been conspiring with Yoo Hyun-bo, one of the trusted soldiers who worked very closely with Kim Jong-bo. When Kim Jong Bae came with the confession letter and told the soldiers to arrest Jinhan, Yoo Hyun-Ho came forward and said that whatever the baduk gambler confessed to was not true. Jinhan, at the end of Captivating the King episode 3, asked the soldier to arrest both Kim Jong Bae and his son. The minister of war couldn’t bear the insult, and the fact that he had lost to Jinhan made him even more furious. He attacked Jinhan, but the grand prize was quick, and he killed him with one swift movement of his sword. Jinhan finally became the king, and every council member supported his claim to the throne.
Why did Jinhan punish Hee-soo?
Yoo Hyun-Ho just asked for one thing from his new king: he said that the baduk gambler, i.e., Hee-soo and her aid Hongjang, should be punished severely for giving a false confession. Jinhan knew that Hee-soo was not at fault, but Hyun-Ho had helped him at a time when he needed it the most. Jinhan wanted to lead by setting an example, and though his heart told him that what he was doing was not right, he still went ahead and punished both the girls. The people still didn’t understand that Hee-soo was not a guy, something that I personally found very difficult to digest. Hee-soo and Hongjang were sent with the prisoners, and the latter did not survive for long and succumbed to her injuries. Hee-soo, after seeing Hongjang die, decided that she wouldn’t stay in captivity. She fell from the cliff after one of the guards who came chasing her cut her with a sword. Hee-soo was injured, but she was alive.
At the end of Captivating the King episode 4, we saw that she came back to the kingdom and registered for the baduk competition, which was being organized on the orders of the new king. Jinhan was sick and tired of playing with himself, and he desperately needed someone to play with him. Hee-soo registered herself with the name Mong-woo, as she knew that the king would get to know who she was. In the upcoming episodes, we will get to know what kinds of conflicts Jinhan has to face now that he is the king and what he does after he comes to know that Hee-Soo is back.