This is where you can read the manhwa. https://www.lezhin.com/en/comic/painter But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes.
In the last part, I’ll examine father Yoon and his relationship to time. I have to admit that there are more speculations as we have barely seen him so far, yet all of them are based on observations. First, we still don’t know his first name. Secondly, he has been mostly presented through the testimonies of characters until now:
- Baek Na-Kyum in chapter 1 by his father” [missing part],
- Kim in chapter 35,
- Yoon Seung-Won and Yoon Seungho in chapter 37,
- an older servant in chapter 37
- this time, through a memory from the main lead in chapter 55
- the physician in chapter 57
Yet, he is only seen in one chapter directly, the episode 44.
This signifies that we have never heard his voice and seen his true face as it was always through the gaze and words from others. That’s why we have almost the impression to be dealing with a ghost. Moreover, their description is rather uncomplete and doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole truth, as they don’t possess all the information. Yet the readers have one advantage compared to the fictive persons. They see father Yoon through the drawings so that we can see his gestures and get more knowledge about him. The panels represent reality and past that’s why I’ll study them more closely.
However, because of his indirect introduction, I believe to recognize a certain pattern. Since he is mostly introduced through others and everything revolves around the past, I am connecting him to the past. First, he is the reason why Yoon Seungho suffered so much to develop a trauma and had nightmares. Nonetheless, I sense that his cruel behavior towards his eldest son is related to the past as well. First, we know for sure that Yoon Seungho’s grandfather was an official and he must have had a high position because Jihwa described that the Yoons were declining and he was referring to the father. If there is a downfall, it signifies that the Yoons had quite a high position. Striking is that the main lead is not mentioning here his father at all who was also working for the government according to the testimony of the commoner. Therefore we need to ask ourselves why Yoon Seungho is not mentioning it. The first deductions would be to say that he is no longer acknowledging his father or it is related to the purge which he wants to hide too. Since father Yoon was forced to withdraw from his post, just before the purge occurred, there’s no ambiguity that father Yoon is related to the plot. Yet, despite all these reasons, I feel that there’s more to it. I detect that father Yoon’s post could have been different from the one his father had, something not worth mentioning it. This would explain why his first name was never mentioned and his post is not described. He never made himself known as a good official, his name never got noticed. Imagine, father Yoon doesn’t get the high position he thought he deserved and feels betrayed. Because of his father’s power and reputation, he could have felt entitled to get the same high position like his relative. Because of his hurt pride, he resented the king (or other officials). And now, you can imagine how I perceive the father. I believe that he is a combination of Jihwa and Jung In-Hun. Jihwa was obsessed with the past and vented his anger towards others through his hands. Note that father Yoon is also using his hands to express his negative thoughts or feelings.
In chapter 44, his hand is not only shaking due to anger. He is clenching his fist exposing a certain brutality. If the son had been there, the former would have used violence against him, Yoon Seungho was indeed provoking him. And this negative judgement about father Yoon is confirmed much later, in chapter 57. Here, he grasps his son’s neck and squeezes it so much that he leaves marks on Seungho’s neck. Furthermore, the young boy’s face is covered with bruises. Besides, Byeonduck added the sound of the grasping indicating the speed and force father Yoon employed on his son’s neck. This was never a tender gesture, it exposed frustration and resent. Since he is using his hands in the same way than Jihwa’s and he is connected to the past through the reports made by the character, I believe that he is associated to the past. However, unlike the naive red-haired noble who is wishing to go back to the past, where he was living carefree and had a good relationship with Yoon Seungho, I think that father Yoon has a different judgement about the past. He actually resents the past. He felt humiliated or hurt, then he needed to get revenge.
So let’s return our attention to my first assumption. Let’s envision, father Yoon felt humiliated because he hadn’t received the official post he was eyeing. Due to the past, he couldn’t overlook this incident and his resent started growing so much that he started plotting. At the same time, he imagined that he was entitled and destined to achieve greatness that’s why he could only resent his eldest son. In this panel I see a proof of his jealousy because Yoon Seungho’s good reputation is introduced with his so-called illness simultaneously. Note that his sickness is just reported by the father, yet the doctor has never been able to diagnose it. For me, there is no doubt that father Yoon used the son’s illness in order to diminish his good reputation. He didn’t want to get overshadowed by his own son. Imagine his frustration, based to my theory, not only he had not received the position he desired and requested but even Seungho’s notoriety was surpassing his own. Let’s not forget that khaki is the color of dragon’s eye hence I concluded that the father was judging himself as a dragon, while he was not in reality.
And since I expressed the idea that father Yoon must have this idea that he was destined to achieve greatness, then he is very similar to Jung In-Hun. Why do I think so? First, if you look at his chamber,, you’ll notice the presence of books on the shelves which reminded me of Jung In-Hun. [In case you don’t know, in psychology it is recognized that the way you decorate your house, it reveals your personality.] Remember that we often see Jung In-Hun surrounded by books. The latter even follow him to his bed. Observe that the books are piled up and are put next to decorations revealing that they are actually used as decorations. It was, as if father Yoon wanted show off his education by displaying his collection of books. Since there are a lot of decorations, it also indicates his need to expose a certain wealth. In other words, I judge him as arrogant and superficial as well. Finally, the way he puts the books and decorations in display exposes his controlling nature. The display of the shelves gives us the impression that there is a certain order.
But since he is very similar to Jung In-Hun, then this means that he is unable to have a great overview of the situation and to perceive people’s true nature. Furthermore, this signifies too that he is blind to his own shortcomings and his hypocrisy, not recognizing that he used sodomy and prostitution, although he hated it. Just like the scholar, he was betraying his own narrow-minded principles. Because of his lack of discernment, he misjudged Jihwa and Seungho’s personalities and had the impression, they were sick, either too nice towards commoners or were homosexuals. It is definitely possible that this is related to tears. The father disliked seeing tears in the children, a sign of weakness and femininity in his mind. Another clue for this theory is Yoon Seungho’s behavior towards the scholar. He realized the teacher’s true nature immediately and could fool him so well. From my perspective, the main lead recognizes Jung In-Hun’s true character because he had already met such a character before, it was his father. That’s why he said such words towards Jung In-hun in the woods. He knew that his father was thinking like that, felt great satisfaction to humiliate him. Furthermore, this would explain why Yoon Seungho was always reminded of the past, when Baek Na-Kyum was rejecting him. Imagine, the lover would choose the despicable “father” over him. One might argue that the person he recognized in Jung In-Hun could be lord Song. However, it is not possible, as there is no fear and he is definitely not afraid of his father. Seung-Won might use his father’s name in order to ask his brother to reconcile with their father, but Yoon Seungho doesn’t change his mind at all. He burns the letter, sends a ruined painting to his father, mocking him as he knows how he hates sodomy. He is treating the scholar the same way than father Yoon. He has no respect for both of them and looks down on them. He is now strong enough to stand up against his father.
And since he is very similar to Jung In-Hun, I come to the following conclusion, he is a terrible judge of characters. My theory is the following: father Yoon believed in lord Song and relied on him a lot as the latter was always stroking his ego, while the latter planned to use father Yoon in order to climb the social ladders. Lord Song could have come from low nobility but had great ambitions. After betraying him, the father was forced to use his son to escape the purge and instead of blaming the right person, he actually resented his son. He had failed him in his eyes.
That’s why I believe that this scene will play a huge part in the future. First, not only Seungho refuses to support them but also he got more wealth and power than him. Father Yoon must disdain his eldest son terribly. He got “punished”, while in his mind his son succeeded. Since this delusional man full of arrogance didn’t learn his lesson from his mistakes, his disdain and hatred for Yoon Seungho must have reached a new peak the moment he received the damaged painting. Imagine how he must have felt, this was such an affront coming from his eldest son. Therefore I envision, father Yoon decides to work against his son again. He has been betrayed and humiliated by his son, then the latter must pay for this. First, he will hear that Seungho is sponsoring a low noble, hence in his mind, Jung In-Hun must be so good that he will plan to snatch him away from his rival, unaware that he got played by the scholar and Yoon Seungho. The former teacher will be abandoned by the protagonist sooner or latter and once approached by father Yoon, Jung In-Hun will decide to use the father, unaware what awaits him in reality. As you can imagine, I am already anticipating the real downfall of father Yoon. He never realized that he was the author of his own misery, he destroyed his own future by hurting his brilliant son due to his own blindness and arrogance. Since we never got to see father Yoon’s face, I am more and more convinced that he wears glasses, just like the teacher. And if this turns out to be true, then my interpretation of the glasses will be confirmed. As you can detect, I believe, we will have a repetition of the past, the father attempting to get revenge but failing miserably, too obsessed with the past and his so-called destiny.
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