Painter Of The Night: Setting the trap

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.

After reading chapter 69 for the first time, my instinctive reaction was to comment about Min’s presence at the kisaeng house on Twitter. Some readers had some doubts that this was Min, because the latter usually wears a green hanbok and not a mustard-yellow. Jihwa is the one wearing such hanboks, which is indeed correct. I have to admit that I didn’t even think about this detail, because my eyes had paid attention to something else: When I saw the laugh in the background, for me there was no doubt, Min was at the kisaeng house. The laugh is The Joker’s mark, that’s how you recognize this villain. (chapter 19) (chapter 54) And remember that a joker is a synonym for a comedian. Naturally, I have other arguments for this interpretation.

First, notice that Jihwa has never been at the kisaeng house, he prefers visiting the tavern. (chapter 59)

Secondly, since the story is constructed like a kaleidoscope, this signifies that we have to expect a repetition with some variations. And in chapter 19, Min is indeed present at a kisaeng house with Yoon Seungho. And back then, he was inquiring about the painter before making the following suggestion to the main lead: they should drink the expensive wine at the protagonist’s mansion. Black Heart was already trying to set a trap, because he couldn’t stop thinking about the artist. He felt the need to have sex with the artist, but in order to have his wish fulfilled, he needed to create an occasion. So the expensive wine was the bribe. One of my readers supposed that Min had planned to have the painter drunk, this is definitely possible. However, I am more inclined to think, Black Heart desired to have the main lead drunk, so that he could approach the artist more easily. Why? I believe, Min has totally misjudged the painter’s personality due to his observations. Remember that he is someone watching people closely. Since he saw the painter getting aroused during the sex session (chapter 8), he had the impression that the low-born was experienced with sex, and as such was “depraved”. He felt attracted to the painter’s facial expressions exuding pure and raw desires. He saw a confirmation of his perception in the drawings as well. In chapter 19, he describes the drawing as lewd, and for me he is actually thinking about the artist while commenting this. Moreover, this is the same expression Yoon Seungho will use during their Wedding Night: How could he paint such pictures without any sexual experience? Since Black Heart had the impression that Baek Na-Kyum was an easy man (a witch seducing men), The Joker proposed later to Yoon Seungho to bring the low-born to their sex sessions (chapter 33, chapter 52). He imagined, the artist would never be opposed to this, he just restrained himself due to Yoon Seungho’s order. That’s why he made such a comment about Baek Na-Kyum. (chapter 52) In my opinion, Min came to the belief that the lord was the reason why the painter didn’t join them in their sex sessions. However, he was right and wrong. In reality, the painter’s inner struggles were caused by the scholar’s indoctrination, and later the lord did really desire to keep the artist to himself. Yet more importantly, Baek Na-Kyum is actually a very loyal and faithful person, hence he abhors sex sessions. Since Min’s first scheme had failed, then he needed to find a new approach. Hence he came with this idea: if the lord gave his consent, he would be able to get his wish fulfilled. Therefore he keeps suggesting to bring the artist to their sex sessions after each failed trap (chapter 19, 43). Simultaneously, each time he planned something, this always backfired on him. In chapter 19, he got to see the beautiful face of Baek Na-Kyum full of tears, which could only arouse Min even more. Yet he couldn’t touch him. Then after urging Jihwa to organize the abduction and assassination, a few days later, Black Heart has to see the artist’s smooth legs, which can only increase his arousal. The more he tried to taste the commoner, the more he got tempted without being capable to satisfy his urges. Each time he even helped the lord in the end. In chapter 19, his plan with the expensive wine benefitted Yoon Seungho the most. The latter was finally able to “taste” the painter, and now Yoon Seungho has recognized that he can trust his loved one. He will now believe in his words, a huge step for the main lead. At the same time, Baek Na-Kyum got to hear that he could trust the noble, because the latter would believe in his words.

Moreover, since I have already portrayed the Joker as sadist, his desires can only increase, because he sees the painter’s condition has not improved. The last time Black Heart saw the low-born, he was a wreck… and I doubt that this repelled him. It had quite the opposite effect. Why do I think so? First, we have Yoon Seungho who confessed to the painter with these words: , therefore “wreck” had a positive connotation. Besides, we have Heena noona who complains about the painter’s terrible state. Yet at no moment the painter feels shocked or terrible. That’s why I believe, when Min saw the painter’s poor condition, his urges to taste the artist reached a new peak. That’s why he revealed Jihwa’s culpability. He needed to divert the lord’s attention, while he was already setting the next trap.

Because I have already elaborated this theory that Kim and Min have been talking to each other since the last party, I am quite sure, the butler must have revealed his knowledge to the Joker. Since Jihwa is no longer able to enter the place, the valet needed another pawn. In his mind, Min was perfect. So they must have agreed to use Heena noona during that morning. Both saw in her the perfect tool, because she already has a negative perception of Yoon Seungho. At the same time, she is close to the painter, therefore the latter will trust her more easily. Let’s not forget that when Min approached Seungho’s mansion, he saw the kisaeng making a ruckus in front of the mansion. He discovered her relationship to the artist. So far, no one had an idea where the artist was coming from. So their first plan was quite easy. Heena noona would bring the artist outside the mansion, while Yoon Seungho was busy making trouble at the Lee’s mansion. Both manipulators anticipated that once the artist woke up and saw his sister by his side asking him to leave, he would run away with her. In their mind, Baek Na-Kyum could only resent the aristocrat for the harsh treatment during the last night. That’s why Kim urged her to speak. He knew what she would say.

As for Min, he was very displeased with the new situation. Jihwa had really messed up, because for Min it would become more difficult to taste the artist. Besides, he is more than ever forced to kill Baek Na-Kyum, as the latter could reveal the scheme and the identity of the culprit. After the scandal Yoon Seungho created in town due to the artist, the Joker recognized that if anything happened to the painter, the main character would make sure to uncover the truth and make people pay for this. Remember The Joker’s words in chapter 43: They needed to fake an accident to cover up the murder, because killing a commoner was still a crime. And now you comprehend why Min revealed the abduction to the protagonist. Not only he wanted to divert the noble’s attention, but also he needed a scapegoat for the next kidnapping. Since Jihwa had disobeyed him, Black Heart felt the need to punish Jihwa. But most importantly, the red-haired aristocrat needed to pay for the situation he had created: Min was no longer able to concretize his “dream”: taste the painter.

But since Kim and Min thought that Baek Na-Kyum would follow his sister easily, we have to imagine that the Joker projected that he would encounter the low-born at the kisaeng house. He couldn’t wait to meet him, especially after seeing him as a wreck the same day. That’s why he went to the kisaeng house later. Since he had a servant by his side, the latter could ask the kisaeng’s guards, in which kisaeng house she was living.

And now, you are wondering why he is wearing a hanbok like Jihwa’s. It is quite simple: he is impersonating him. Since Jihwa refused to kill the painter, Black Heart envisioned that the noble had kept postponing the kidnapping due to fear and remorse. Therefore The Joker decided to come up with a new strategy, which would be so tempting that the red-haired noble wouldn’t doubt his words. Min asked the same thing than Nameless. He just needed to wait and remain in his mansion, having a low profile. In other words, Black Heart asked him to do nothing! Since Jihwa would do nothing, he wouldn’t have to feel remorse, and more importantly, he wouldn’t commit any crime in his eyes. Since the second lead is quite naive, he doesn’t realize that knowing the existence of a crime and not revealing it is actually a crime too. In his mind, his hands would remain pure, whereas in reality he is an accomplice. That’s why Min asked him not to run away. How did I come up with impersonification? It is because we already had one, and like I have already exposed it, each incident will be repeated. Jihwa impersonated lord Song, when he sent the fake letter.

And remember Jihwa’s reaction back then. He never saw any wrongdoing in his action, he didn’t recognize the seriousness of his misdeed. He even blamed the main lead.

In my opinion, Black Heart had envisioned the painter’s return, therefore he was waiting for him. Since neither Jihwa nor Min had ever visited this place, this means that no one would know their real identity. From my point of view, Black Heart had already anticipated to taste the artist that night. And if Baek Na-Kyum had disappeared, the kisaengs would have noticed the nobles with the color of the hanboks. However, the problem is that Heena noona returned alone that night. Hence Min’s scheme had failed again.

And now, I would like to point out the presence of the noble with the mole. He is noticeable with the purple robe. First, the latter is often seen with Jihwa, hence the aristocrat is already guilty by association. From my point of view, Black Heart is so determined to have his wish fulfilled that he is willing to jeopardize everything. And in my opinion, the poor friend has no idea about this. The manhwaphiles shouldn’t forget that in season 1, Min already betrayed him once, when the latter got humiliated and evicted from Yoon Seungho’s bedchamber. The Joker didn’t leave the lord’s chamber, hence he chose to side with the host. Moreover, we have the second lead’s admiration for their relationship: (chapter 59) Jihwa will realize how fake this relationship was. There’s this possibility that Min also manipulated his friend, telling him that he was playing a prank. Remember that in chapter 37, Min lied to Jihwa and the noble with the mole sensed it, but decided to overlook this deception. For Jihwa has already been connected to the first abduction, the moment Baek Na-Kyum disappears, Jihwa will be suspected. Since he has the bad habit to sneak out of the mansion, the kisaengs’ testimony could play in his disfavor. Yoon Seungho, blinded by his first mistake, would no longer believe in his friend’s innocence. As for the friend, even if he claims, he was with Min, the main lead won’t trust his words either, especially after the incident with the topknot. And if he participated in the prank (calling Min Jihwa for example), persuaded by his friend to play a prank, then he is done. But the problem was that the kisaeng returned without her brother, which must have surprised Black Heart.

But this doesn’t mean, Min will give up. In fact, it is the opposite. He must have heard the sister’s comment who speaks her mind so loudly that she doesn’t realize the danger. But we shouldn’t forget that Min is not working alone in this. Kim is already setting the next trap. He used the servants for that. Since he has been by the lord’s side for so long, they trust him. So when the domestic warned Heena noona to never return to the house, he was actually repeating Kim’s words. Why do I think so? Notice that the valet is always the one referring to the lord’s bad reputation, and observe that the domestic uses the expression “is known as”, indicating that in truth he doesn’t judge his master like that. As the manwhaphiles can detect, the staff have become Kim’s eyes and mouth, that’s why he can definitely act in the dark. And while he was not present in chapter 69, I could still feel his presence due to the domestics. The butler is already trying to drive an edge between the kisaeng and the protagonist. He desires to push Heena noona to ignore her brother’s wish, and let him kidnap, although in her mind, she will be saving him. Now, she would become the perfect tool. As you can see, I am expecting a new conspiracy, and they will use Heena noona’s ignorance. For them, it is truly a blessing. And since Min is impersonating Jihwa, he can act, as if he had an interest to separate the couple. Moreover, he can even tell her that he will protect her brother from Yoon Seungho, as he has power and wealth as well. The noble won’t be able to abuse his power. And since Min is always laughing and smiling, Heena noona will trust him, as for her Yoon Seungho is just a violent fiend. However, in order to push her, they will have to fake a letter. Since Heena noona spoke in front of the domestics, that he could write her, if he changed his mind, Kim will know about this and forge a letter from the painter. Another possibility is that Kim leaves a fake letter from the painter behind, telling Yoon Seungho that he chose to return to his sister’s side. As you can detect, the letter will be the downfall for Min and Kim in the end. That’s how the conspiracy will be revealed. The main lead will know immediately that another crime has been planned and even committed. So far, only the noble knows that Baek Na-Kyum is illiterate. When they returned from the tailor shop (chapter 40), Kim wasn’t following them, hence he never saw that the lord had to read for the painter. This will be the new version from the chapter 56. I have to admit that there is this possibility that once Heena noona receives the letter, she decides to go to the authorities, and ask for their help. Remember that she mentioned it once, therefore it is possible that she decides to do it. And this is definitely something Min and Kim are not expecting. Furthermore, the readers should recall, they tried to use Nameless, and the latter didn’t act like anticipated as well.

As a conclusion, all the traps set by Kim and Min are doomed to failure. I am still convinced that Kim will be forced to reveal his true role in the end, because Min will pressure him. Striking is that the manipulators believe that they know everything, while in reality they are judging people based on appearances and their words. They imagine, the others don’t have any secret, because they are so easy to read and easily manipulated, which is far from the truth. I have not mentioned Nameless here, as so far, I have no clue what he will do exactly. But there is no doubt that Nameless will play a huge part in the failure of the trap set by the manipulators, since he desires to keep his promise to Jihwa. Only a joker can destroy another joker.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My instagram-tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and for the support, particularly, I would like to thank all the new followers and people recommending my blog.   

Painter Of The Night: Decisions

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 previous analysis “Jealousy and trust” I demonstrated the importance of jealousy in the different relationships. In chapter 69, we see Heena noona getting resentful towards Yoon Seungho, for the latter has affected her bond with Baek Na-Kyum. The latter is refusing to listen to her advice. At the same time, the manhwaphiles could see the change in Yoon Seungho’s behavior concerning the painter. He chose to trust the artist, and ignore his own feelings (insecurities). But the powerful noble is not the only one to make a resolution in that chapter. The artist makes the choice to stay, while the kisaeng decides to ignore her brother’s decision. Therefore we can say that the chapter 69 stands under the sign of “decision”. That’s why I will examine the episode 69 under this aspect.

What caught my attention is the lord’s behavior in the beginning. He stands in front of the door, but doesn’t open it. This contrasts so much to his attitude towards Jihwa, when he barged in his mansion. Note the disparity between these two pictures. On the one hand, the manhwaphiles only get to see his feet, on the other he is shown as a whole person in the second picture. From my point of view, these images reflect the main lead’s mental disposition. He feels strong and confident in front of his former childhood friend, because the latter committed a huge misdeed towards him. But he feels so small and powerless in front of the painter, because he knows that he was the one in the wrong here. He mistrusted Baek Na-Kyum’s words, as a result he treated him as a sex toy, while he had claimed that he would adore him. And this panel announces the noble’s gradual transformation. For the first time, he is not following his desire to approach the artist, he is now listening to his conscious. It is possible that he heard Heena noona’s words and the artist’s confession, but from my point of view, it doesn’t truly matter. The most important aspect is that for the first time, Yoon Seungho didn’t allow his hand and feet to act on impulse. He always listened to his emotions, when it came to Baek Na-Kyum, which led him to make wrong decisions: he used his feet and hands to approach the artist and hurt him. In my opinion, he must have been reminded of his own words, when he punished the vicious servant in chapter 53. : “Who do you think you are to put hands on him?” Who was he really to Baek Na-Kyum? If he had to be judged by the way he had treated the painter the day and the night before, then he was definitely abusing his power. Hence he had no right to decide about the painter’s future. That’s why he retreats and returns to his bedchamber. Although he desires to be by the artist’s side, he is well aware that he can no longer force himself onto the artist. And if he truly heard their conversation, then this signifies, he realized that there was hope for him, as the painter had developed an affection for him. Imagine that if he did listen to their discussion, this signifies that Yoon Seungho decided to overlook Heena noona’s metaphor: a symbol of misfortune. Anyway, in front of the door, he was not thinking about himself and his pain, rather about the painter. This mirrors Baek Na-Kyum’s words: he keeps thinking about the master. But Yoon Seungho is one step ahead of him: he is no longer in denial about his love for the painter. That’s why I already perceive a change in the lord’s behavior in that panel. He is retreating, because he wants to let the painter make his own choice. He doesn’t want to put pressure on him, because if he does, he will always feel insecure. After hearing that Baek Na-Kyum had remained by his side, because the scholar had hurt him, Yoon Seungho’s heart had not only been wounded, but also poisoned. The butler’s revelation in chapter 50 gave him the impression that he had never been selected. That’s why he couldn’t trust the artist in the end. And now, you comprehend why I perceive Kim as really dangerous and evil. Kim fueled Yoon Seungho’s self-hatred and insecurities in order to tame and use the lord. Since the main lead’s biggest wish is to be picked by Baek Na-Kyum, he realized that he needed to give the painter some space and time to decide his own fate. There is no ambiguity that Kim’s words played a huge part in his resolution to give the painter the freedom to determine his future. When the butler mentioned the father, his intention was to remind the main lead of his own suffering. Father Yoon was an abusive and controlling father who kept imposing his will onto the main character. The latter was pressured to obey. Yet, what Kim didn’t expect was Baek Na-Kyum’s resolution to remain by the lord’s side. The butler had imagined that after that treatment in the barn (he kept hearing refusal from the artist), the latter was resenting the main lead and would run away, if he had the opportunity. Simultaneously, he also envisaged that by comparing him to father Yoon, the noble would choose to send away the painter, do the opposite of his father: releasing from his prison. Kim made a huge miscalculation: he never anticipated the real depth of the master’s affection for the painter. He wouldn’t give up on him. The main character took the advice differently. And by giving the painter the freedom to determine his destiny, Yoon Seungho will be able to perceive himself the truth.

So what did he do after his return to his bedchamber? Like my follower @Yaoon72898111 correctly pointed out, the main lead must have felt desperate and infuriated , because you can see shattered glass and the bed cover in front of the door. He was annoyed, not because he had been wounded by Heena noona’s words, but because he had realized that he had ruined everything for not trusting the artist. After giving some thought, I believe that this is a new version of chapter 48, when the lord drank first, before throwing the table. Yet the huge difference is that in chapter 69, he was mad at himself. However, as time passed on, he could calm down. Nonetheless, this doesn’t mean that he had forgiven himself. It was, as though he was punishing himself, when he sits on the terrace in the cold. Observe that he is sitting in the corner reinforcing the impression of contrition. He feels unworthy to be treated as a master, hence he didn’t ask his staff to clean the mess. We have to imagine how tormented the lord must have felt, while waiting for the kisaeng’s departure. He is still unsure about the artist’s choice. Will he leave him behind or not?

Striking is that Byeonduck focused a lot on the noble’s hand and gaze in this chapter again. On the surface, it looks like Yoon Seungho fell back into his bad habits. He destroys the room, then he drinks and smokes in order to numb his body and emotions. Let’s not forget that after the return of the painter in chapter 61, he was also smoking in front of the window, giving the impression that he was serene, while in reality he was literally boiling inside. However, I believe that this time, it is different. Note that the hand appears like frozen and emotionless in the panel, because the fingers are not moving. Besides, the gaze seems cold, yet clear. From my point of view, the aristocrat is here firm. He made the choice not to intervene and not to follow his emotions blindly. However, this doesn’t mean, he isn’t suffering internally, quite the opposite. The huge divergence from before is that he is willing to accept the outcome of the situation. Since he had been blinded by his own emotions, he is well aware that he has to ignore them. In other words, he is tormented, while waiting, but he doesn’t let it transpire. At the same time, we should remember that he is sitting in the cold as a sign of penitence.

That’s why when he hears the noise of the door opening, he looks immediately in that direction. He was waiting for a signal. This explicates why the author allowed the manhwalovers to zoom on the noble’s face. In a brief moment, Yoon Seungho’s gaze mirrors his true soul: he is scared, desperate and wounded. The sound of the door announces the final verdict, it could become the death knell for Yoon Seungho. If the painter decides to follow his sister, then he has to accept this. We have to imagine that in the main lead’s mind, the longer Heena noona remained by Baek Na-Kyum’s side, the higher the probability was that the painter would fulfil his sister’s wish, as it implied that she would increase the pressure on her brother. Yoon Seungho was well aware that if he entered the room, he could ruin everything. If he heard the conversation – I believe, he did -, he had sensed that he had not damaged his relationship with Baek Na-Kyum for good. But as time passed on, he became more and more uncertain. Hence he feared this moment. However, he was resigned to his fate. That’s why his mouth is closed. He has no saying in this, he is powerless. Like my follower @_tryxy_ observed correctly, this is the gaze the protagonist had after the low-born’s disappearance. Nonetheless, there exists a divergence. In chapter 60, the wounded and desperate gaze was focused on himself, hence he is felt betrayed. In chapter 69, all his thoughts are evolving around the painter. He is definitely prioritizing the commoner now, despite his agony.

And now Yoon Seungho’s attitude in episode 69 stands in opposition to chapter 30, when he threw a tantrum acting like a spoiled child, whose favorite toy had vanished. Here, he was surrounded by his staff and beating the domestics, whereas he sent them away in the last episode. He could no longer blame them for his misery. He was responsible for this scandal and his wrongdoing. Hence I come to the conclusion that Yoon Seungho pondered a lot, while he was sitting alone in the dark, but more calmly, unlike during the night of the low-born’s disappearance. He made preparations, in case the painter would select him. Therefore, he is definitely more mature and responsible. He is not only learning from his mistakes, but also feeling remorse, which I can only approve as a teacher. Finally, he starts using his mind more rationally.

Striking is that when he asks the painter about his resolution, he doesn’t interrogate him directly. Here he is feigning ignorance, and for a reason. If he had asked if the painter was leaving him, his inquiry could have negatively influenced the painter’s resolution again, an indication that he had already planned how to react in face of the verdict. That’s why after hearing the artist’s statement: he is so relieved , because there’s a glimpse of a smile on his lip. Note that Baek Na-Kyum is calling him “my lord” or “sir”, displaying that despite the incident, the aristocrat is still respected. The commoner still views him as his master. In this scene, the manhwaworms can sense another contradiction with chapter 30. While the main lead literally flew towards Baek Na-Kyum in the first season, in chapter 69 Yoon Seungho walks slowly with dignity. He is even followed by a servant showing that he is here indeed acting a honorable host. The other huge contrast is that he has already removed his manggeon. Besides, there’s light in his room now. It was, as though the lord had been relaxing in his chamber, and not waiting for the guest’s departure. Therefore he is not properly dressed, when the sister and the painter leave the study. His hanbok is opened, and without the manggeon. He looks like he feels enough comfortable around Baek Na-Kyum to show himself like that. He desires to create the illusion, he was well aware of her presence and had allowed it. Yet he didn’t pay too much attention to the scandal from the morning. At the same time, he doesn’t want to reveal to Baek Na-Kyum that he has discovered the true reason for his recent desertion. He is truly applying the philosophy from his butler: feigning ignorance. He acts, as if nothing had happened. There’s a reason for that. By doing so, he hopes that the artist will overlook his harsh treatment. In my opinion, as long as he has no idea of the outcome, he has to keep the pretense. If he expresses his wish too obviously, in his mind this can still affect the artist’s decision. He can still leave at any moment. As a conclusion, he behaves in a totally opposite way from the previous night and from the morning. He is willing to heed his words. (here as contrast: chapter 66)

And then why is a servant following him? From my point of view, since the protagonist still had no idea about the low-born’s decision, in case of his departure, he wanted him to accept the clothes he had bought for him. He wished the painter not to get cold and simultaneously to see that he had offered them, because he wanted to please the artist, and not in exchange for sex. He couldn’t forget the clothes left behind during the night of the abduction.

Another difference from chapter 30 is the gesture of the aristocrat’s hand. While he grabbed the commoner by the throat and pushed him against the wall, this time he gives the artist’s neck with the scarf. He is tender and careful, making sure that his loved one doesn’t get cold. As you can observe: when the lord approaches the commoners, he is determined to treat Baek Na-Kyum as his honored guest, while in the past due to his tantrum, the artist’s status became affected. From that moment, he was perceived as a servant, especially after the lord had dragged him into his chamber. Not only he had pledged loyalty to him in front of Jung In-Hun, but also he had accepted to do anything for the powerful aristocrat. In chapter 30, Baek Na-Kyum had no real saying, he had even been forced to make an oath in order to protect the scholar. However, in chapter 69, the moment the painter calls him “my lord” and “sir”, he indeed acts more like a lord. Since the artist is considering him as his master, then he has to behave like one. That’s why he gives his permission to the painter. As you can sense, Yoon Seungho lets the artist determine the nature of their relationship. He has become a staff of his household, the moment he called Yoon Seungho “my lord”. In other words, the situation has returned to the beginning, with a huge difference. Baek Na-Kyum is doing everything on his own volition. Yet, there is no doubt that Yoon Seungho will ensure that Baek Na-Kyum’s status evolve. He will make sure to woo him properly so that he can accept him as his partner, now Baek Na-Kyum is just a favored domestic. Hence you understand why Byeonduck used elements from chapter 35 as well. The lord was on the verge on giving up, when he saw a glimpse of hope, because the painter was blushing. In chapter 69, there’s hope too. That’s why the lord’s gaze is much softer, and his face lets transpire relief. The other positive aspect is that they are truly listening to each other. Baek Na-Kyum realized that Yoon Seungho’s comment about his noona’s behavior was correct. She had indeed insulted him by barging with guards in his mansion, and the noble had been benevolent. He had truly kept his promise, hence he switches the way he is addressing to Yoon Seungho. It becomes again “lord Seungho”. That’s why I see a huge progression in this episode. Baek Na-Kyum is the one determining the evolution. At the same time, he recognizes the good intentions behind the main character’s words and actions. He has already asked to send a servant to accompany his sister to the kisaeng house. What moved me the most was the noble’s facial expression, when he heard the painter thanking him. For the first time, someone was noticing his kindness, and was even grateful. This explicates why Baek Na-Kyum was blushing the whole time. After hearing the lord’s confession, he was able to hear and feel the care and affection in his attitude. In other words, it was, as though the magical words “you’ve made a wreck of me”/”I adore you” had lifted a curse, and the artist was no longer blind and deaf any longer. However, despite everything Yoon Seungho’s biggest wish didn’t get fulfilled. The painter was still not looking at him the same way he was looking at his noona and the scholar. That’s why Baek Na-Kyum is represented without eyes. Nevertheless, unlike in the past, the aristocrat doesn’t get enraged and resent the painter. In fact, this reminds him that he always wanted the painter to smile. That’s why he grants him the wish to follow his sister to the door. And with this decision, he actually achieves his goal. For the first time, the painter is able to smile. Sure, there’s another reason here. The protagonist is happy, because he could see Heena noona, and he wasn’t truly abandoned, like he had imagined.

As the manhwaphiles could observe, the author combined the chapter 30 and 35 together to outline the huge change in the protagonists’ behavior. While the low-born is able to perceive Yoon Seungho’s attention, genuineness and selflessness, the latter has decided to trust the painter and show him his true self. Both have truly matured, they are making decisions for themselves for the first time. This explicates why the low-born’s bow represents the climax of chapter 69. This time, he is not doing out of convenience and fear, like in chapter 12, but out of true respect. He sees Yoon Seungho like a true master, who can be generous and affectionate. The image of a lord with mood swings is not longer existent in the painter’s eyes. And now, you grasp the impact of the butler’s manipulation. The latter created a fake bow in chapter 12, by telling the painter that Yoon Seungho was a terrible master due to his bad temper. He had disguised this negative perception by mentioning the lord’s traumatic past. However, by outlining that he had worked for him for a decade and he was still scared of him, he was insinuating that the time spent with him was the cause of his pity, and in reality, the lord was indeed true to his reputation. During this night (69), this negative notoriety has been removed, because in front of him, Baek Na-Kyum only sees a calm and gentle master, who treats him and his sister very well. So the words he told his sister, he treats me very well, have become a reality. His special treatment will no longer dependent on Yoon Seungho’s moods, which were triggered by Kim’s manipulations. In a single day, Baek Na-Kyum was able to regain his reputation and to perceive the lord’s true personality correctly. He is no longer relying on others, hence this signifies that Kim can no longer manipulate the low-born as well. And this is no surprise that the valet is absent here. He has to be out of his master’s sight. The lord had witnessed how Kim acted behind his back. Yet he is still unaware that the valet is still ruling behind his back, as the servants trust him. Without him, both main leads can breathe more properly, his words are no longer polluting their mind. That’s why the windows are all open, while the lord is waiting for the painter’s decision. The master is clearing his head, making his own decisions without listening to his butler’s info.

Although both protagonists are still awkward around each other, they are now observing each other , ensuring that the other won’t be hurt and they don’t misunderstand each other. Both are trying to use their own senses in order to interpret the partner’s reactions and thoughts correctly: the eyes, the touch, the hearing. Yoon Seungho has to do more than the painter. He needs to earn the painter’s trust again, hence he externalizes his thoughts: he trusts the honesty in the artist’s words. That’s why their relationship can improve very quickly, there’s no one who can interfere between them any longer. Even Heena noona was not able to convince her brother to leave the mansion. Baek Na-Kyum is trusting his own senses and instincts in the end.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My instagram-tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and for the support, particularly, I would like to thank all the new followers and people recommending my blog.   

Painter Of The Night: Jealousy and trust (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa. https://www.lezhinus.com/en/comic/painter But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes. If you want to read more essays, here is the link to the table of contents:  https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/07/04/table-of-contents-painter-of-the-night/

Feel free to make some donations/sponsoring: Ko-fi.com/bebebisous33  That way, you can support me with “coffee” so that I have the energy to keep examining manhwas.

While I was reading the manhwa again, the scene when the lord caressed the painter’s cheek in chapter 18/19 caught my attention. Striking is that neither the noble nor the painter cared too much about that gesture. The artist was too shocked due to the huge scandal, and the main lead had the impression, he just wanted to taste the artist out of curiosity and interest. So there was no deep meaning in the caress, yet this gesture was witnessed by the scholar Jung In-Hun. (Chapter 18) And this not only shocked him, but more importantly, it really made him jealous.

1. The scholar’s jealousy

Imagine, he was upset, because the painter had been the recipient of a caress from the powerful noble. Yet, he didn’t feel repulsed, just displeased and resentful But if he was jealous, then it signifies that he desired to have received this mark of attention. That’s the reason why I come to the conclusion, Jung In-Hun would have even accepted the noble’s advances, if it meant that he would get some benefit from it. And this interpretation is even confirmed, when you compare it with its reflection in chapter 35.

2. The comparison of the caress on the cheek

Here, we have a reversed situation. Exactly like the main character, he strokes the artist’s cheek, while he seems not to be aware that he is observed by Yoon Seungho. However, unlike in chapter 19, the caress has a huge signification. Jung In-Hun is faking affection in order to achieve his goal: the painter should spy on the benefactor on his behalf. Consequently, before he leaves the mansion, he reminds him of his request. (Chapter 35) In other words, although the caress from Yoon Seungho was anodyne, his gentleness was genuine, whereas it is the opposite with the teacher’s stroke. Moreover, if you compare the vocabulary field, you’ll notice the contrast: duty/work versus entertainment. And although the low noble is aware that Baek Na-Kyum has been very ill, he just sends him back to his “work”. He makes sure that the artist doesn’t fall for the lord’s generosity. He should remember that this is just work, and not entertainment. Moreover, the teacher reminds the painter of his promise: he is his servant. As the manhwaphiles can detect, in chapter 19, Jung In-Hun was already jealous of the painter, because he was receiving the lord’s attention and affection. But this was just a caress, therefore envision how he must have felt, when he heard this from the painter: (chapter 35) He must have realized that he was on the verge of losing the artist’s favors. That’s why he reminded the painter of his “loyalty” and “promise”. In chapter 35, Yoon Seungho was the one jealous, hence imagine the resent and jealousy Jung In-Hun must have felt in chapter 19. Yoon Seungho had even cut ties with another aristocrat due to the low-born. But unlike the scholar, Yoon Seungho’s jealousy was much more intensive to the point he would have killed the artist, if he had set a foot outside the mansion, though I doubt that he would have done it for real. But why are these characters jealous?

3. Jealousy: its origins and consequences

I made some research about the origin of jealousy and this is was I discovered: This feeling appears, when someone feels insecure in his relationship with another person due to the appearance of a third person. And if we take this definition into consideration, then the scholar’s jealousy is triggered by two aspects. First, he resents the artist, because he caught the lord’s attention. Yet there is more to it. He resents the low-born, as the latter seems to have escaped his control. Let’s not forget that Baek Na-Kyum allowed another man to touch his cheek. For the first time, Jung In-Hun saw another man getting closer to Baek Na-Kyum, indicating that his influence over the artist was diminishing. The readers shouldn’t forget that the scholar enjoyed it very much to use the low-born as his puppet. In the past, Baek Na-Kyum would always follow his orders, yet with this anodyne gesture, Jung In-Hun realized that something had changed. That’s the reason why he had to blame the painter for this, and accused him of seducing the main lead. (Chapter 19) In truth, he projected his own thoughts onto the painter. He wanted to be the one getting closer to the powerful aristocrat, and would do anything in exchange for his own interests. Simultaneously, he needed the artist to remain obedient and loyal, so that he wouldn’t become a rival. And now, if we examine the protagonist’s jealousy in chapter 35 with this definition, we recognize that it is related to the sex marathon. Yoon Seungho had envisaged that after that event, the painter had finally accepted him as his partner, and their relationship had changed. Besides, after his return, Baek Na-Kyum had been in his bed and had never reproached the sexual encounter leading to his illness. Therefore, he had envisaged that the commoner was slowly accepting him.

While many think, jealousy is terrible, evolutionary psychologists regard it as a necessary emotion, because it helps people to preserve their social bonds and motivate them to improve their relationship, since it serves as a wake-up call for the affected person. And if you pay attention to Yoon Seungho’s behavior, you’ll indeed sense that right after feeling jealous, he tries his best to improve his relationship with the painter. In chapter 35, he compliments the painter , approaches him and smiles to him. (Chapter 35) Moreover, he caresses his head (chapter 35) after finally asking him about his interest. This scene made him realize that he needed to get to know Baek Na-Kyum better, and their relationship shouldn’t only be limited to sex. Hence he invited the painter to his bedchamber that night. In my opinion, he really hoped to initiate a conversation. That’s the reason why he was writing something, he hoped that Baek Na-Kyum would ask, but due to the aphrodisiac and the “warning” from Kim, the artist didn’t dare to speak. As a conclusion, we could say, Kim would have totally succeeded to ruin Yoon Seungho’s plan, if the brother hadn’t appeared that night. At the end, Baek Na-Kyum did earn the lord’s trust, he was able to sleep by the lord’s side.

4. Heena and Yoon Seungho’s jealousy

And now, with the release of chapter 69, we have a reflection from these two chapters. We see two jealous persons, Heena noona and Yoon Seungho, the kisaeng is replacing the teacher. Yet, there’s a huge change. Why? While Baek Na-Kyum in the past would trust his adoptive parents and follow them blindly(chapter 35) (chapter 46), we see the painter deciding his own fate. He prefers remaining in the mansion. Not only he is no longer listening to his parents, but also he becomes proactive. He gives his noona his own scarf, a sign that he is now old enough to take care of her. (Chapter 69) He is no longer a child. In reality, this gesture has so much meaning. With this tender gesture, he desires to end the discussion. Notice that she keeps pressuring him (chapter 69), illustrating that she is still not giving up on her adoptive son. Since the chapter 19 is a reflection of episode 69, I believe that Heena noona’s behavior is indeed motivated by jealousy. Imagine, for the first time, her son doesn’t obey her, while in the past, even if he admired the teacher, the latter never represented a threat to her relationship with her son. For the first time, he has refused her help (chapter 68) and pushed her hand away, a huge shock for the kisaeng. (Chapter 68) For her, the only explanation can be the negative influence of Yoon Seungho. And because she attempts to change the painter’s mind just before leaving, Baek Na-Kyum stops her by smiling. He is trying to reassure her that he is fine. (Chapter 69) But she doesn’t trust her son’s judgement. She believes, she knows what is right for her son. Therefore, her last words exposes her true intentions. She won’t respect the artist’s choice. (Chapter 69) She thinks of herself as her son’s savior, whereas in reality, she will jeopardize Baek Na-Kyum’s safety. There’s no doubt that she will be manipulated by Min and Kim. Due to his kind words, she has already judged him as a good man (chapter 67), unaware that she is trusting a terrible servant who is determined to hurt her son. This reminds us of the chapter 35, where Jung In-Hun risked the painter’s life. I have to admit that after comparing the scene from episode 19 with 35, I had the impression that Jung In-Hun could have been demonstrating his affection in order to show off to the lord that the painter would only listen to him. Let’s not forget that in chapter 30, the teacher tried to sell off Baek Na-Kyum by telling Yoon Seungho that the artist would only obey to him. And in both cases, Jung In-Hun never recognized the real situation: he was putting his life in danger. And observe that we have many parallels in chapter 69 with chapter 30 as well. We have the painter’s intervention (chapter 69), when he senses that Heena noona keeps challenging Yoon Seungho by refusing to recognize his benevolence and her wrongdoing. Here again, he speaks to the main lead in order to deescalate the situation. While in chapter 30, he feared the main lead, (chapter 30) yet he desired to protect his learned sir, in episode 69 we have a reversed situation. The one menacing is the kisaeng, and not the lord. The latter steps back, as he knows that he did something wrong to his lover. Baek Na-Kyum could have exposed his brutality. However, due to Yoon Seungho’s past action, Baek Na-Kyum has learned to fear the noble’s power and strength. Hence he intervenes, because he wishes to protect his noona. (Chapter 69) Nevertheless the readers can sense that the artist is feeling more uncomfortable than scared. Moreover, his sincerity and his thoughtfulness is palpable. He is indeed recognizing the lord’s leniency. (Chapter 69) Another similarity is the constant blushing of the painter, the lord’s action and words surprise him. Therefore there is this awkward moment, for both protagonists are trying to figure out the situation. The lord never expected a thank you from the low-born, especially after receiving such a mistreatment. (chapter 69)

In chapter 35, he detected his exhaustion and honesty, but he felt indeed affected by his presence. Nonetheless, the cause of his reddening diverges here. (chapter 69) He is not just affected by the main lead’s appearance, but also by his gestures. Baek Na-Kyum is finally able to see the kindness in Yoon Seungho. First, he did keep his promise to the artist. He restrained himself to punish the kisaeng. Secondly, he put himself the scarf around the low-born’s neck, which is quite extraordinary. The manhwaphiles shouldn’t forget that Yoon Seungho is actually lowering himself by acting so, he prioritizes the commoner. This is not surprising that at the end, Baek Na-Kyum can’t help himself blushing. (Chapter 69) Unlike in the past, Yoon Seungho is willing to trust the painter by his actions and words. Therefore he emphasizes this: (chapter 69) “I do believe”. He has learnt his lesson. He recognized that his judgement had been clouded by his insecurities and jealousy. That’s why he stares at the painter, when the latter is looking at his mother walking away. (Chapter 69) He notices the artist’s concern and attention towards his mother. This explicates why he allows the painter to follow the kisaeng to the front gate. However, as you can observe it, the painter is not realizing that the lord is paying attention to his facial expressions. In my opinion, Yoon Seungho is trying to make the painter smile, when he gives his consent.

Let’s not forget that in chapter 44, he did ask Jung In-hun to bid farewell to Baek Na-Kyum, but the latter never cared for the boy. Yet, Yoon Seungho is only at the beginning to trust the painter entirely, hence he asks him to remain in his sight. (chapter 69) This explains why he asks him to follow his mother only to the front gate. That’s the limit of his trust. I would even add, he can’t bear Baek Na-Kyum out of sight. That’s how much he loves him. He needs to feel his presence close to him. And exactly like in chapter 35, the readers sense the importance of the door. While in episode 35, the gate was associated to life or death, now the door symbolizes trust. Within the building, he will put his faith in the artist’s words. Finally, we have another allusion to chapter 35: the reference to coldness. (chapter 35) And this parallel reinforces my perception about the valet. He is a hypocrite, because he incited the lord to go to the window, while claiming that it was cold. That’s why I perceive the chapter 69 as a good sign. Yoon Seungho is definitely willing to trust the painter. He let him make his own choice, and the moment Baek Na-Kyum expressed that he was not leaving the mansion (chapter 69), the lord could only feel relieved. That’s why he had a softer gaze right after. (Chapter 69) He was definitely happy that the commoner had chosen him. However, there’s still awkwardness between them, hence the noble can’t entirely trust him. And this lack of trust becomes a reality, when in chapter 80, the manhwaphiles witness that Yoon Seungho had threatened the kisaeng behind the painter’s back. (Chapter 80) He had once again listened to the butler’s advice… How can I be so sure? It is because the real author of the threat was the butler and not the lord. (chapter 69) Yoon Seungho will never order someone to eliminate a person. He will always use his own hands. We have many evidences for this: the hunt and the scenes with the sword. (chapter 69) The tragedy is that in the courtyard, the artist made the lord this promise: (chapter 69) He would remain by the lord’s side, but the lord still didn’t trust the artist’s words. And now, it is time to examine the origin of Yoon Seungho’s jealousy and lack of trust.

5. The real cause for the lord’s jealousy

As you can imagine, the answer is quite simple. It’s Kim. The latter has always been mistrusting people, he always felt insecure. In other words, he was jealous. This signifies that deep down, he always wanted to keep the noble’s attention and affection. That’s the reason why he revealed the incident with the door to father Yoon. (chapter 77) The young boy was looking at someone else. He would stop looking at him like that. (chapter 57) The butler would lose his influence over the boy. Under this new light, you comprehend why he decided to betray father Yoon after the straw mat beating. The young boy was rejecting him and despising him. (chapter 77) Yoon Seungho’s gaze was telling all his emotions and thoughts. That’s the reason why the butler isolated his master for so many years. And note that in chapter 69, he projected his own thoughts onto the painter again. Since the butler has always backstabbed, betrayed and abandoned Yoon Seungho, he imagined that the artist would have a change of heart too… like Kim always did in the past. Naturally, this is the negative version of a change of heart: not compassion and remorse, but resent and jealousy!!

And now, you comprehend why the bride’s abduction has to take place right now. Kim is not only on the verge of losing his home… but also he has lost his master’s love and affection. He is no longer looking at him. For the first time, he was punished which had never happened before. (chapter 77) If the painter leaves the mansion, the butler will make sure to portray the painter in a negative light. But there’s one thing that Kim overlooked: Yoon Seungho’s ability to learn!! Remember that jealousy is there to make the partner realize that he needs to improve his behavior. Since he mistrusted the painter’s choice, he realized later that he needed to earn the artist’s trust first. Therefore he made the following promises: (chapter 70) and he would always ask for the artist’s consent. (chapter 71). Furthermore, the artist’s reproach in the tavern (chapter 75) must have been an eye-opener for the wealthy aristocrat as well. How can he expect “loyalty and trust” from Baek Na-Kyum, if he is himself a fickle man by nature? With such words, the artist encouraged the lord to stop wavering and doubting his lover. He needed to show his love and trust first, before expecting it right away from the low-born. And now, you comprehend why Yoon Seungho started courting Baek Na-Kyum. He needed to show his trust and love in order to obtain it. And in chapter 80, he finally succeeded it. Therefore the bride’s abduction is doomed to failure. Kim won’t be able to achieve his goal. However, there’s one thing that this incident will make the lord recognize that he trusted the wrong person. He should never have listened to the butler’s advice and threatened the kisaeng, because this meant that he was mistrusting his lover!

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My reddit-Instagram-Tumblr-Twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and for the support, particularly, I would like to thank all the new followers and people recommending my blog.   

Painter Of The Night: How strange…🤔🧐 (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa. https://www.lezhinus.com/en/comic/painter But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes.  If you want to read more essays, here is the link to the table of contents:  https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/07/04/table-of-contents-painter-of-the-night/

It would be great if you could make some donations/sponsoring: Ko-fi.com/bebebisous33  That way, you can support me with “coffee” so that I have the energy to keep examining manhwas. Besides, I need to cover up the expenses for this blog.

I have to admit that when I read the chapter 50 for the first time, I was quite confused. Why would Yoon Seungho rush to the teacher’s bedchamber with a sword? Why would he comment „How strange…” at the end? (chapter 50) I tried to find answers by speculating. However, my assumptions were totally wrong due to the lack of information. Only time and new chapters helped me to understand the story much better. Thereby I could better anticipate its progression, and comprehend the reasons for the characters’ actions. Due to the constant examination, I made the following observations:

  • The story keeps repeating itself, as it is constructed like a kaleidoscope, hence we always have reflections in the characters’ words and behavior.
  • Each incident happens twice: two door incidents (16; 43); two sex sessions at the pavilion, two slaps; the incident with the sword/knife (1, 18: two servants are stabbed/26, 35) etc.
  • Each action from Yoon Seungho will be copied by the painter, or it is the reverse: Yoon Seungho caresses Baek Na-Kyum‘s cheek (18, 50), the artist reciprocates the same gesture (55, 59). What caught my attention is that each stroke on the cheek was never truly perceived by the recipient. The protagonist was either sleeping or too shocked by an incident, so that they couldn’t detect the gesture. They missed the genuineness and warmth coming from the other protagonist.
  • All the characters have reflections with others: Jihwa versus Baek Na-Kyum, Heena noona versus father Yoon; Nameless versus Kim; Jung In-Hun versus Kim but also Min and father Yoon, Baek Na-Kyum versus Kim etc. The latter is also a water element, exactly like the artist. Therefore he is often seen with a bucket of water (chapter 33) (chapter 56), and there’s always a drop of sweat on his face. However, if you pay attention, you’ll notice that the valet is never seen washing. He carries the bucket around, and that’s it, which stands in opposition to Baek Na-Kyum. The latter cleans his own underwear, but also the protagonist’s face (chapter 55).  

Yet I still had no idea what truly triggered Yoon Seungho’s anger and frustration in chapter 50. And then, while analyzing the chapter 16 in connection with the essay entitled “Desires and communication”, I made this discovery: Yoon Seungho used the same expression there: (chapter 16) Here, he was wondering how the painter was able to create the painting, while he didn’t seem to look at them the whole time. What caught my attention are two elements:

  1. The painter was actually watching, without giving the impression, he did. Yoon Seungho’s words imply a certain deception.
  2. Simultaneously, they outline a contradiction. He was not looking, yet he could recreate the position perfectly.

The noble didn’t realize that during the sex session, Jihwa described the scene to attract his friend’s attention. That’s the reasony why the artist could create the painting, as he listened to the aristocrat’s words. In other words, he was spying on them by listening to their conversation. Since there is the same expression in chapter 50, this means that the latter is a reflection of chapter 16. The manhwaphiles should remember that we have a sex session during that night. (chapter 49) The painter expressed his thoughts: he only saw the noble as a sex toy, the main lead was the one who should give pleasure to Baek Na-Kyum. Yet despite the hurt, Yoon Seungho was willing to accept this situation. They would no longer exchange their thoughts and emotions. He was already lowering his expectations. At the same time, he couldn’t help caring for the low-born. He caressed his cheek and kissed him gently at the end. (chapter 50)

Since I explained that the expression “how strange…” was connected to deception, contradiction and spying, I recognized that something similar must have happened during that night (chapter 50). Besides, we also have a time jump. Suddenly, there’s morning, and the lord has rushed to the scholar’s room with a sword. (chapter 50) And this scene reminded me of the main lead running to the scholar’s room in chapter 28/29, after witnessing the artist’s desertion. There was a time jump as well. Therefore I came to the conclusion that the night in chapter 48-49-50 has the same importance than the night with the forced sex and fellatio. This explicates why the lord has a sword again. Back then, he took the weapon due to his jealousy, hence we can definitely conclude that he is angered again due to the return of his jealousy. So chapter 50 was not only a reflection of the episode 16, but also of the episode 28-29.

Because of the connection with the painter’s escape and the incident with the opened door (chapter 16), I couldn’t help myself linking the chapter 50 to Kim and his actions in the shadow. Like I have already pointed out, Kim was observing the event of the night (25-26-27-28) in order to ensure that the protagonist wouldn’t cause too much trouble. Moreover, the manhwalovers should recall that he played a huge role in the low-born’s escape. While Deok-Jae informed Baek Na-Kyum about the scholar’s whereabouts, we have to imagine that the teacher must have talked to the butler about the destination of his trip. Jung In-Hun will always choose to talk a domestic closer to the master than to a simple guardian. Besides, Kim was the one who brought him to his room and the library (chapter 7). Therefore I am quite certain that Jung In-Hun must have mentioned to the valet where he was going. Consequently, I came to the following observation: the butler must have monitored Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum during that night (chapter 48-49).

From my point of view, Kim was standing behind the door, and he must have heard the low-born’s words.(chapter 49) , reminding us of the “spying” in chapter 16 (listening to their conversation). Because the confession gave the commoner the upper hand in the relationship, and the main lead had not protested, this meant that Baek Na-Kyum was getting closer to Yoon Seungho. He was almost on the verge of becoming the official partner, while the protagonist was resigning to his fate: he would never be able to converse with the artist. Since I demonstrated that the butler was spying on them in chapter 58 (chapter 58), as the presence of the butler is perceptible through the bucket of hot water and the readers can hear the low-born’s moaning, we have another clue that the valet was listening to their conversation in chapter 50.

In my perspective, the butler had every reason to spy on them. First, the invitation to share his meal with the artist was already announcing that the latter was getting more and more favored to the point that he was almost treated as the noble’s official partner. And now, you understand why Kim revealed the incident between Jung In-Hun and Baek Na-Kyum the next morning. He needed to separate the couple, and he used lie by omission and truth in order to achieve his goal. But this doesn’t explain why Yoon Seungho who was tender and humble during the night became a wounded fury the next morning. The hanbok clearly indicates that the protagonist’s heart is bleeding. (chapter 50) What had triggered his fury and jealousy?

For we have another incident with the sword in the first season (chapter 35), where Kim manipulated the master to witness a conversation between the teacher and his former pupil, in order to provoke his jealousy. We have to imagine that in chapter 50, the butler made a similar move. He let the main lead discover something reminding him of the painter’s love for Jung In-Hun. We have three possibilities: he let Yoon Seungho see

  • the scholar’s poem
  • or the picture of the teacher’s inauguration
  • Deok-Jae’s insult: Baek Na-Kyum was a whore so that Kim could bring up the conversation in the library

What caught my attention is this panel: (chapter 21). The paper in the book is very similar to the poem in chapter 4. Remember the theory I exposed in the essay “hypotheses about the second season”: Yoon Seungho had not returned the original poem, but given the artist his own poetry. So if he didn’t give back the scholar’s poem, then what did he do with it? I doubt that he would have kept it, hence I deduce that he must have asked his assistant to throw it away, exactly like the painter in chapter 44. However, Kim must have read it and kept it, well aware that this could be of use later. From my point of view, the butler must have entrusted it to the teacher with the hope that he would leave the mansion. And I can imagine that when Jung In-Hun left his room, he didn’t take it with him. That’s why it ended up again in the butler’s hand. However, if the lord discovered that the poem had not be thrown away, he would have realized that Kim had disobeyed him. That’s why I came to rule out the first possibility.

So what about the second possibility? Since the painting with the scholar appeared in two chapters during the first season (41-44), the readers should expect that this picture will be used twice during the second season. Because I already exposed that Heena noona recognized the painter’s presence due to the inauguration painting (chapter 65), it is definitely possible that Kim planted the picture in such a way that Yoon Seungho’s jealousy would get triggered, a new version of the panel from episode 41. Let’s not forget that the aristocrat was not present, when Baek Na-Kyum decided to discard the drawing. Kim was quite clever with this move. As he knew that the noble had now just a purely physical relationship, he could only get infuriated, when he saw the picture. He had already sensed the painter’s admiration in the drawing: the image oozes pure adoration and spiritual admiration, something Yoon Seungho has always been longing. Hence the noble could only get wounded with this terrible experience. I can imagine that Kim could have praised the picture in front of his master (a new version of chapter 44), then added that Baek Na-Kyum had trusted him with the picture to give to Jung In-Hun. Kim hoped with this intervention not only to separate the couple, but even to have the painter killed by the main lead, a new version of chapter 35. But what he didn’t expect is that the noble would rush to the teacher’s room, and not to the study. However, his delay could be explained differently. He had been busy giving the sentence to Deok-Jae, the straw mat beating. And this leads me to the following observation: denunciation. In chapter 28, Deok-Jae covered up for Kim’s betrayal, for he hoped that Kim would come to protect him. (chapter 28) Observe that Deok-Jae’s treacherous action in chapter 47 (the spoiled rice) had not been exposed to the lord! Thus I am deducing that Kim must have tattled on Deok-Jae about the insult, and told to the vicious servant that Baek Na-Kyum had complained to his lover! He had denunciated him! This would also explain why Deok-Jae resented so much the painter later. (chapter 51) The man believed the butler, because he had not covered up for him about the prank with the spoiled rice. Finally, I discovered that this expression “how strange” was used by someone else: (chapter 37) It was the fake servant who had mentioned the purge! This means that someone had betrayed the Yoons, tattled on them! As a conclusion, the expression “how strange” is connected to denunciation and deception! I have two other evidences for this interpretation. Jihwa had also spoken like that, when he had heard from the amateur spy that his master had a change of heart! Here again, we have spying activities and denunciation. (chapter 13) Finally, observe that in season 3, Baek Na-Kyum is portrayed and stigmatized as a traitor. (chapter 91) The maid’s statement (“I’m surprised…”) truly exposes that the painter had such a reputation among the staff. The so-called treacherous nature of the painter served as a justification for Kim’s punishment. The butler’s kindness had been used against him. He had been sentenced to the straw mat beating, because he had allowed the noona to enter the mansion for the painter’s sake! In that scene, the maids had been tasked to leak a certain information to the couple: the existence of the kisaeng’s letters. That way, the painter could accuse his lover of his deception. He had kept away the letters from his noonas. However, the separation didn’t take place, because the painter didn’t hear the comment from the maid. He was no spy! (chapter 91) But Yoon Seungho is one, for he is the surrogate son of the butler… who listens to conversations in the shadow! (chapter 77) His presence was undetected in the courtyard, until Bongyong wounded the painter. Here, he came out of the shadow! (chapter 78)

Under this new light, it becomes now understandable why Kim decided to reveal the incident at the library to his master. (chapter 50) That way, he could separate the couple. Due to their last sex session, he had discovered that the protagonists were getting closer to each other. He made sure to utilize Yoon Seungho’s hatred for prostitution. And keep in mind observations with the comment “How strange…”: we had spying, deception, contradiction and denunciation. The spiritual love stands in opposition to prostitution.

And now it becomes more understandable why Yoon Seungho had a relapse. How strange is it that the moment he gets closer to the painter, he experiences a setback? No, it is, because there is someone interfering in his life. Kim was determined to sabotage their relationship, he didn’t want the painter to become the lord’s official partner. But what was his motivation? First, it was to preserve his own position, for he is the unofficial lord of the mansion. Secondly, he could justify his action by saying that he was helping the mysterious “lord Song”. The latter is supposed to be Yoon Seungho’s unofficial partner. That’s the reason why Kim kept calling Baek Na-Kyum a favored servant. The butler was hoping that this would fuel Deok-Jae’s jealousy and greed. At the same time, he hoped that Yoon Seungho would get tired of him. However, since time was not helping him, then he needed to take things into his own hands. Yet, for that he could only act in the shadow, exactly like in the terrible night during the first season. And now, the manhwalovers comprehend why there’s the return of the headband in chapter 52. The butler’s scolding in chapter 52 triggered the artist to act like a servant, whereas the butler didn’t consider him as a servant in chapter 23, another evidence for the valet’s hypocrisy.

And now if I examine the last panel again with this new approach, I come to a new interpretation: The lord’s real spirit has not been perceived by the painter yet, just his body, hence he is embodied by a shadow. This doesn’t really represent his true self. Besides, the lord is associated to a shadow, because he is the puppet of his own butler, who keeps working in the dark. At the same time, he is a shadow, for his fate is to learn from his surrogate father, Kim’s spying activities. He hears conversations behind the door (chapter 68) or the window. This is important, because that way, he is getting prepared to fight against his biggest opponent, lord Song who stands behind Kim. However, there exists one huge difference between Kim, Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum. The protagonists are no secret agents, they are both detectives. They want to understand their partner and their past, but since both were victims of crimes, this means that their role is unveil the truth so that both can get justice.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My instagram-tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support, particularly, I would like to thank all the new followers and people recommending my blog.   

Painter Of The Night: Baek Na-Kyum’s past

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 essay entitled “Persuasion and Pride and prejudice in the manhwa” [https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/06/18/painter-of-the-night-persuasion-and-pride-and-prejudice-in-the-manhwa/], I demonstrated that Baek Na-Kyum had been suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. Moreover, I also elaborated that the low-born had been exposed to coercive persuasion. Nevertheless, since we had the appearance of the adoptive mother, Heena noona, I got new insight about the painter’s youth.

Byeonduck gave us more clues about the painter’s past. First, I realized the importance of the place he was raised. Since he was surrounded by loving noonas, he grew up in a loving environment. Nonetheless, because the kisaengs belong to the lowest social rank, they don’t have a good reputation, which is visible in the way Yoon Seungho called Heena noona: “harlot” or “wench”. So right from the start, Baek Na-Kyum grew up in a rather secluded place, it was not the place for children. Therefore, he never had the chance to make friends so that he couldn’t exchange his thoughts with his peers. That’s why he is seen painting on his own in the first chapter. Since he couldn’t play with other children, he overcame his loneliness with painting. And remember that social isolation plays a huge role in coercive persuasion.

Secondly, each time he witnessed violence perpetrated on his adoptive mother, he could only cry before being sent away with the scholar Jung In-Hun. He could never voice his anger and intervene. He hadn’t the strength and the time to stop the abuse. The only thing he was able to do was to cry as a sign of protest, and later find solace in the scholar’s arms. The manhwaphiles can detect his anger, powerlessness and pain in this panel. Hence while the low-born grew up, he was not only deeply influenced by this negative image of rich nobles, but also not allowed to voice his resent. From my perspective, the artist must have felt no liking to interact with other people. On the one hand, he was happy among his noonas, on the other hand the strangers visiting the brothel were all perceived by him in a negative light. That’s why I come to the conclusion that Baek Na-Kyum’s isolation was even reinforced by these incidents, creating the perfect situation for the coercive persuasion.

Moreover, the story told from Heena noona’s perspective clearly outlines that this kind of incident was recurrent. And the author posted another picture on social media reinforcing this impression. Striking is that the painter’s facial expressions are showing sadness and pain, whereas the scholar is actually smiling. This is palpable due to his gaze and the angle of his mouth. And this panel truly displays the teacher’s hypocrisy and superficiality. How can he smile and ooze a certain happiness, when the boy is definitely feeling depressed? More importantly is that the young boy is on the teacher’s back, which explains why he could never perceive the fakeness of the warmth. Sure, one might argue that the teacher was happy, because he was hugging the artist. Yet, in a real embrace full of affection, people are facing each other, like in this panel: Yet observe how the scholar is hiding his face from the innocent boy. The artist could never witness the teacher’s facial expressions and gaze. And if we combine these two observations, we recognize why the artist questioned the genuineness of the main lead’s hug in chapter 49. Note that he didn’t see the lord’s gaze in that moment. He was actually hiding his face from the protagonist. Moreover, he didn’t pay attention to the lord’s words , too overwhelmed with the last sex session. If he had truly listened to his words, he would have sensed the noble’s unhappiness and regrets. He was definitely expressing some self-reproaches here. The problem was that in chapter 29, Baek Na-Kyum realized the scholar’s betrayal after a warm embrace due to his words, explaining why he was rather critical to this warm embrace. Yet here the artist made a mistake. He judged the gesture without paying attention to the lord’s remark. And this shows to me that Jung In-Hun took advantage of the artist’s affection to fake care and love. Yet, while he was faking warmth and love, he never said anything, since either the faces are covered or the mouths are closed . That’s why Baek Na-Kyum made this mistake in chapter 49. His skills to listen were poorly developed, because in his past he barely talked in the end. I would even add that he had been trained not to voice his thoughts and emotions in reality. Why do I come to this conclusion? It’s because he speaks either like his surrogate father or like his adoptive mother (chapter 65) (chapter 2) I am quite certain that he adopted her perception of the world due to his negative experiences. Besides, I believe too that Heena noona was already influenced by the scholar. She already mistook for a hero and misjudged his personality. Therefore I come to the conclusion that the painter’s skills to lead a conversation weren’t developed at all. The scholar had no interest to teach him, because this would have led to critical thinking. Furthermore, he is just a low-born. Finally, he had no reason to talk, because this would mean that he had to explain the situation. Why did the rich noble become violent? So he was doing the exact same thing than the butler: he was swaying the violence under the rug by letting take the wealthy and violent aristocrat the blame. Since no one discussed these incidents, the painter could never voice his anger and developed his conversation skills. That’s why it tool a long time for Baek Na-Kyum to finally listen to the main lead properly. He experienced a similar situation than Yoon Seungho in truth. Yet there was a huge difference between them. Yoon Seungho could read books, hence his thinking could improve, whereas it was not the case for the artist. He had to find another way to voice his emotions. Therefore he came to paint in my opinion. This was the only place where he could express his emotions properly, yet his pictures were only reflecting warmth and love, but nothing about his negative emotions: rage in face of injustice and violence.

From my point of view, these incidents reinforced the bound between the low noble and the low-born. Moreover, the noble could only smile, as he had the opportunity to enter the kisaeng house without paying anything. He could keep trying to get close to the powerful and rich aristocrats frequenting the kisaeng house, and the boy was the key to enter this place. Finally, since the scholar is also a reflection of Kim, and the latter always uses others to achieve his goal, while he lets others take the blame, we have now a confirmation that the scholar was definitely responsible for these incidents. The kisaeng is seen hurt by the rich noble, we can definitely imagine that the scholar was the cause for these incidents.

In the head-kisaeng’s eyes, it was the right thing to send away her son in tears and rage, because that way she was protecting him. He wouldn’t catch the brutal nobles’ attention. At the same time he would find comfort in a caring person: the scholar Jung In-Hun. But this method could only last, when the boy was young, because he older he got, the higher the risk was that Baek Na-Kyum would unleash his rage onto the violent nobles. That’s why the mother decided to trust the painter to the teacher. Simultaneously, this observation made me realize this: Yoon Seungho’s words expressed the same emotions the low-born sensed, when he saw the main lead’s face. He was also sent back to these violent incidents. And now, you understand why the painter didn’t feel repulsed by the rather brutal confession. When Baek Na-Kyum met the protagonist, he could only reject him because of his past experiences. He saw in him the typical violent noble. However, surprising is that Yoon Seungho allowed him to express himself. That’s why Baek Na-Kyum lied, even yelled at him or criticized him by calling him a man consumed by lust. This explicates too why the painter was only honest during a confrontation in the end. While in his past, he could never voice his thoughts and emotions, he could with Yoon Seungho, as the latter never sent him away or shut his mouth with a warm embrace. Remember how the noble asked him to explain the situation about the ruined painting. He gave him the opportunity to speak, and kept asking for an explanation. He did the same thing in the barn as well. And now, you understand why the painter could only fall in love with the main lead, unlike in the past, he could freely express himself. Therefore I consider the chapter 68 as an evidence that Baek Na-Kyum isn’t suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. His love confession reflects his inner conflict. He loves him, yet there’s a certain reluctance. Moreover, he is arguing with Heena noona in chapter 68 showing that he is thinking on his own. Thanks to his “teacher”, he doesn’t just follow his mother’s wish blindly. Note the contrast between these two panels:

(chapter 46) (chapter 68) What caught my attention is the caress on both cheeks in the farewell. The gesture oozes tenderness and love, yet at the same time her hands are restraining the painter’s mouth. With her hands, she hinders the artist to argue with her and reject her decision. That’s why he accepts his fate, although he is terribly wounded by this experience. This explicates why she repeats the same gesture in chapter 68, yet she can’t stop him from speaking this time. The painter still disagrees with her. However, observe that the kisaeng is determined to act like in the past. Someone takes the boy away from a place, and the loving person will cover him with affection so that there will be no protest and objection. However, this is no longer possible. The abandonment affected their relationship, there’s a visible distance between them. The painter doesn’t even stand up for her. And now, if the manhwaphiles examine their conversation, they will recognize that the kisaeng has been cornered by her adoptive son. Even the caress on both cheeks didn’t have the same effect than in the past. That’s why she becomes more and more firm, I would even say authoritative. When she claimed that she had seen everything, Baek Na-Kyum told her what others saw (the lord’s affection) and that the latter had already confessed. For me, since each character has flaws, some more and others less, Heena noona is not different. She doesn’t realize that love is not enough to raise a child. The true goal of education is to let the children become independent. And this can only happen, when they are encouraged to voice their emotions, exchange their thoughts with others and question things. Overprotection can lead to misery in the end. Sure, her temper and personality served as a good role model: she is affectionate, definitely brave and willing to sacrifice herself for her son. But since she judged people based on appearances, she didn’t realize the teacher’s hypocrisy and sent her son to misery.

Finally, I would like to elaborate why the head-kisaeng expected from Jung In-Hun that he would take care of the painter, when she asked: Since in the past, the teacher had given her impression that he was caring and selfless, then she imagined that he would continue doing the same, if she made the request. However, the problem was that the moment she trusted the artist to the scholar, the latter had lost the key to enter the kisaeng house. It was, as if the key of the door had been removed, since Heena noona requested from Baek Na-Kyum to never come back. But this meant that the painter had become a burden for Jung In-Hun. Furthermore, this new panel showed us a teacher without glasses, which confirms my theory that the painter was the one who bought the glasses for Jung In-Hun. That’s why Heena noona could expect something from the scholar. She had allowed him to enter the place without paying, he had been receiving help from the painter as well. However, since the teacher had lost a possibility to find connections through the kisaeng house, he could only resent the painter. Besides, he loathes low-borns. As you can see, he had many reasons for abusing the protagonist:

  • He was definitely jealous of the painter’s success.
  • He couldn’t enter the kisaeng house any longer
  • He had to take care of a low-born, while in his eyes, they are just destined to keep their social status
  • He didn’t feel the need to hide his resent, but he used the erotic pictures to unleash his negative emotions and put the blame on the protagonists.

And since the painter had never the opportunity to talk a lot in his past, he couldn’t oppose much resistance. He was already isolated and their closeness created the perfect situation for the painter to develop a Stockholm Syndrome. He had no one to turn to, and since the painter had been trained to rely emotionally on Jung In-Hun, the physical abuse could only trigger this coping mechanism.

As a conclusion, Yoon Seungho’s desire to communicate coincides with the painter’s too. Nonetheless, the latter hadn’t found the appropriate partner yet. First, he had never learned how to make new acquaintances, and his second abandonment had traumatized him much more. Consequently, he became a drunk. Finally, he couldn’t judge the main lead properly due to his past and his prejudices. However, like my follower @Dunya696 truly noted, Yoon Seungho helped the artist to cope with his traumatic past by humiliating nobles. At no moment, Baek Na-Kyum intervened (chapter 8; chapter 18, chapter 53, chapter 54). Imagine, he risked his face for the vicious servant Deok-Jae who had hurt him before, while he remained totally passive, when the main lead punched Min. So the lord became the hand of justice for the painter, and Baek Na-Kyum didn’t mind in the end.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support.

Painter Of The Night: Desires and communication 📲 (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa. https://www.lezhinus.com/en/comic/painter But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes. If you want to read more essays, here is the link to the table of contents:  https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/07/04/table-of-contents-painter-of-the-night/

It would be great if you could make some donations/sponsoring: Ko-fi.com/bebebisous33  That way, you can support me with “coffee” so that I have the energy to keep examining manhwas. Besides, I need to cover up the expenses for this blog.

1. The significance of communication

In the essay “Respect and love” I demonstrate that both protagonists aren’t honest to themselves, exposing their lack of self-respect. This is one of the reasons why they keep disregarding each other. While they are hurting each other, they force each other to question their own action and words simultaneously. Hence the readers are witnessing their transformation. Little by little, the protagonists mature and turn into adults. They become more responsible. Their growth coincides with the development of attachment and the realization of their affection. At the same time, this evolution is strongly intertwined with the painter’s sexuality. The latter is making his first sexual experiences, which leads him to slowly accept his homosexuality. Yet he still fears his own strong libido and as such his love for the noble. Therefore till chapter 68, the artist is still dishonest with himself. As the manhwaphiles can see, the painter’s honesty is linked to respect and love. Striking is that both values are dependent on communication.

  1. “Love without communication is impossible”. from Mortimer Adler
  2. “Much unhappiness has come into the world because of bewilderment and things left unsaid.” from Fyodor Dostoevsky

2. Communication and relationship

With these quotes, it becomes obvious that communication represents the foundation of a good relationship, where there exist respect, love and trust. Silence or lies stand in opposition to communication, because they create a false perception or an illusion. Since manipulators employ lies by commission or omission, the latter can be judged as weapons. Moreover, unsaid things and deceptions display a lack of trust. That’s why the relationship between the noble and the low-born can only stabilize, the moment they talk to each other properly. Once Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum reveal their true thoughts and emotions to each other, they not only show trust, but also can discover the true personality of their lover. However, if you pay attention to the evolution of the story, you’ll observe two details:

  1. Yoon Seungho is the one who keeps talking, revealing his desire to exchange thoughts with the painter. This explicates why the lord was so hurt in chapter 49. He wanted to communicate (“share what’s on our mind”) with the low-born, but the latter refused, because he just considered the noble as a sex toy to procure him pleasure out of fear to get hurt and deceived again.
  2. The painter is only opening up once confronted with sex and his own sexual desires.

3. Words, sex and its impact on relationship

Now, I would like to elaborate more these observations, hence I will start with the first chapter as illustration. The manhwaphiles should remember that at the tavern, Yoon Seungho was very talkative. (Chapter 1) He expressed his genuine admiration for Baek Na-Kyum’s talent and creations. Yet, at no moment the painter noticed the compliments. He had been forced to touch the loins, which shocked him, and then he remembered the lord’s bad notoriety. Therefore all the lord’s good words fell on deaf ears. The painter was more concerned with appearances and rumors than anything else. That’s why the conversation failed. Since Baek Na-Kyum was not interested in the main lead’s feelings, he feigned ignorance first, and lied at the end. Striking is that their first conversation was connected to books and sex, therefore this already limited their exchange. Moreover, this first chapter clearly reveals the lord’s interest in the low-born. He not only sent a domestic for the investigation about the mysterious creator, but also asked about his recent whereabouts. And curiosity usually initiates a conversation. But there’s more to it. From my perspective, the main lead felt no longer satisfied with the erotic pictures. He wanted to share his emotions and thoughts, when he looked at them. However, he had no one to talk to, so in his mind, if he met the artist, he could come into a conversation with the creator. That’s why he wanted to invite him in the end. The painting of sex sessions would give him the perfect occasion to discuss with someone.

And observe, when the first session starts, he can’t help himself talking to the artist, while Jihwa remains silent, as he doesn’t pay attention to him. If you read the story again, you’ll sense the master’s strong desire to communicate. When the painter arrives in the bedchamber in chapter 8, the lord welcomes him warmly with a huge smile and speech. (Chapter 8) Observe the contrast. The main lead doesn’t reveal his anger towards the noble with the mole, it is not worthy for Yoon Seungho of giving him an explanation for the humiliation. He just smiles (Chapter 8) before grabbing him by the topknot. His words and behavior truly display a huge respect and a desire to exchange thoughts and observation.

Moreover, when the master is not talking during the sex sessions, then he is in a locked gaze with the artist. (Chapter 8) This mirrors the noble’s need to talk and now, you understand why the main lead had to evict the aristocrat with the mole in the end. By requesting to send away the commoner, (Chapter 8) he was more or less asking from the host to remain silent. (Chapter 8) The latter just had to focus on the guest’s sexual desires which confirms my interpretation that the main lead is treated like a head-kisaeng. Since the noble showed him no respect, then the main character didn’t need to respect him either. But more importantly, the protagonist made sure that he would be treated the same way. He also wouldn’t listen to his words, because the noble with the mole didn’t want to hear him speaking either. Therefore the door is closed, before the man can protest. As a conclusion, the aristocrats only visited him for sex or other pleasures and nothing more, while the noble had to remain quiet. Hence we have a silent main lead in his relapse: (chapter 52) However, even here the manhwaphiles can notice the transformation. The guests are no longer here for sex, just for smoking opium and drink wine. That way, the noble doesn’t feel lonely.

And Jihwa was not different from the others. Like Yoon Seungho described it to father Lee, (chapter 67) the childhood friend would only visit him during the night (“used to”). However, it changed the moment the main lead paid a visit to the red-haired noble early in the morning (chapter 3). After that, Jihwa realized that he could also go to his friend during the day (chapter 5 and 12 ). And now, you comprehend why the lord questioned his presence in the morning and why he assumed that his visit was related to sex in the end. It looks like Jihwa never showed an interest in the lord’s thoughts and emotions too. And there exist two reasons for that. First, he had the impression he knew everything about his lover. (Chapter 57) Secondly, there was a risk that the main character could talk about the past and as such mention Jihwa’s betrayal. The lord’s emotions (sadness, anger, pain) represented a huge burden to the red-haired master. (Chapter 59)

This illustrates that the lord was never allowed to express his thoughts and emotions, until the artist arrived at the property. And now the readers can comprehend why Yoon Seungho said this in chapter 18: (chapter 18) Thanks to the artist’s presence, Yoon Seungho had been able to talk and people would actually pay attention to his presence and words. They started listening to his words. Imagine, one word and the straw mat beating was stopped: (Chapter 13) No wonder, why he thanked the painter in chapter 18. He could only be happy, when he confronted his childhood friend, as there was a real exchange for the first time. (Chapter 13) Argument is also a form of communication, and it happens between people in a relationship. Not only his words were finally noticed, but also he was able to draw lines to Jihwa. By influencing the host with the hope, Yoon Seungho would send away the painter, the childhood friend didn’t recognize that he was attempting to turn the protagonist into a puppet, therefore he could only fail. Moreover, Jihwa had no idea that Yoon Seungho’s true desire was to get close to someone, to engage a honest conversation. Therefore the main lead could only reject the friend’s words and proposition. As a conclusion, with the painter’s arrival, the lord’s words were little by little listened, he was able to communicate more with others: Jihwa, the nobles and the staff. After scolding the maids in the kitchen (chapter 38), the head-maid started showing her respect to her lord. But more importantly, he gave her the order personally to bring the painter’s lunch to his study. (Chapter 46) He could finally voice his thoughts, everything happened thanks to the painter. This explicates why Yoon Seungho kept seeking the artist’s proximity, although the latter kept rejecting him (his escape, his lies, his refusal to paint for him etc…). He had realized that his living conditions had improved despite the struggling with the low-born.

His strong desire to communicate exposes that he had no companion by his side. In my opinion, Yoon Seungho justified his existence as a free spirit in order to hide his loneliness and emptiness. It was his explication why the nobles and Jihwa wouldn’t listen to him and disrespect him. Yet, the real cause for this situation was his traumatic past, where he had been forced to silence. Moreover this explains why he never paid attention to intruders in the end. He didn’t have the impression, he would truly live in that mansion. Besides, because people were supposed to visit him during the night for sex, then he was never expecting visitors during the day. Hence he spent his days smoking in front of the window. (Chapter 5) This outlines the main lead’s isolation and loneliness. Simultaneously, with this new approach, the readers grasp why Yoon Seungho couldn’t anticipate to become Min’s target in the end. He noticed Black Heart’s envious gaze , (chapter 8) but he didn’t envision what jealousy and greed would provoke. In my eyes, he couldn‘t identify these emotions properly.

The problem is that Baek Na-Kyum refused to converse with the lord. In chapter 4, the artist didn’t allow the main lead to express his opinion about the plagiarized poem. (Chapter 4) He was not worthy to comment this poetry, as he was just a man consumed by lust. However, the commoner never asked why the noble would judge the poem so poorly. He already assumed that he was just making fun in order to humiliate the scholar, while in reality the noble wanted to reveal the author’s true personality: Jung In-Hun was just a deceiver. And since he had been hurt by the painter’s comment, he retaliated too: since he was just a commoner, he had no right to criticize the lord.

And now, it is time to focus on the second aspect: Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum only started communicating properly through sex. The reason is simple: the painter was only honest, when his unconscious revealed his true desires. Right from the start, the artist was sexually attracted by the lord, but he kept denying it. However, the aristocrat did notice the painter’s genuineness in the sex sessions, which could only reinforce his strong attraction towards the low-born. He loved his art, and now he saw that someone was truly perceiving him. (Chapter 2) Baek Na-Kyum was the first who made the main lead realize the existence of his body. For the first time, he felt attraction through the gaze and saw something beautiful in himself. And what was the lord‘s immediate reaction? He started talking about his thoughts, though this was more a monologue than a discussion. (Chapter 3) (chapter 3) Exactly like the painter, Yoon Seungho began talking while having sex. He even formulated his first desire in front of his childhood friend: (chapter 3) And now, you comprehend why his relationship with Lee Jihwa was doomed to fail. The red-haired master was more focused on sex and his own sexual emancipation than his lover‘s well-being. (Chapter 3) He never asked him why he was behaving so differently. He didn‘t notice that the lord was more communicative.

4. The first real conversation

But let’s return our attention to the main couple. The real conversation between Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum only starts in chapter 16. Nonetheless, the only one talking is Yoon Seungho. He keeps asking questions about Baek Na-Kyum’s sexuality, waiting an answer from the artist:

1.

2.

3.

4.

Here I only selected a few inquiries from the main lead, however what caught my attention is that with his behavior, the noble was putting the artist under pressure. The latter remained silent, but the beholder detect how these questions affect the artist. They actually excite him in reality. Why? It is because the lord’s words incite the painter’s imagination. Note that in the second panel above, he is describing the sex session. And the painter gets really excited, when the noble says this: (chapter 16) On the surface, it looks like he is sulking, the reality is that he is already fighting against his urges. The hand is trembling due the arousal. While you have the impression, he is bothered by Yoon Seungho, the truth is that the artist is getting more and more excited due the lord’s picturesque questions. Funny is that in this scene, the aristocrat is the more innocent one. He plays with the head-band and his “innocence” is truly visible through his facial expressions too: . What is the painter’s real sexual desire? We have the answer in this panel: Getting violated by a stranger! In the wet dream in chapter 6, (chapter 6) a stranger in form of a shadow enters the artist’s room. The lord’s identity is only discovered at the end. But in his fantasy, the main lead was even grabbing him by the hair. It was definitely not a tender gesture. He was even caressing him against his will. And note that when Yoon Seungho questions when he got the most excited to the point that he had difficulties to breath, the commoner remembers this image and not the strokes. (Chapter 16) As a conclusion, the artist is actually a person who likes BDSM. This explicates why the painter’s trembling hand was grabbing the shirt in chapter 12 while facing the lord. He was hiding his erection (chapter 12) triggered by fear. This new interpretation explains why the artist painted the sex at the pavilion in the end. (Chapter 41) If the forced sex had truly traumatized him, he wouldn’t have been able to do so. Furthermore, he questioned the authenticity of the lord’s affection, when he recalled the moment, he was offered to the other nobles. He was upset and offended. (Chapter 55) Yet he didn’t even think about the scene at the pavilion for one minute. This means that Baek Na-Kyum only accepts the main lead as his lover. Fear and pain are not perceived as something negative, they can evoke pleasure.

In chapter 16, Yoon Seungho got the painter so excited that he felt the need to run away in order to hide his erection. Striking is that when the lord starts masturbating him, the commoner starts blushing and crying. But these tears and reddening are not the expression of pain, they express the opposite: pleasure. (Chapter 16) Moreover, he didn’t get angry at Yoon Seungho for touching his phallus. He got more scared that someone had seen him enjoying the masturbation and I would even say, getting grabbed by force. Therefore the lord got an erection and was so happy at the kisaeng house. Finally, he had been able to talk to the painter. He even got to receive a honest answer for the first time, where he was even called “my lord”: (chapter 16) To sum up, Baek Na-Kyum showed a certain respect to the main lead in this chapter. But more importantly, the master was in a good mood, because he kept thinking how he could procure pleasure to the commoner.

5. The secret meaning of „no“

However, he felt a little insecure at the same time, because the commoner had kept saying “no”. That’s why during their first Wedding night, the lord asked him about his first sexual experience: (Chapter 21) The painter reveals the truth by replying that he enjoyed it very much, it felt like a dream. As you can see, chapter 21 was a reflection of the episode 16: we had a discussion, where the lord tried to initiate a conversation, tears of joy connected with pleasure, the lord asking to be called “my lord” and the realization of a dream. But we have another evidence that despite his words, he wanted the main lead to continue: (chapter 16) The commoner’s hand is placed on the shoulder indicating that he is pushing Yoon Seungho to his side. He could have tried to remove the lord’s hand on his phallus, but he didn’t. The hand was even trembling from pleasure. That’s why the second sex marathon shouldn’t be judged as a rape in my opinion, although the painter kept saying no too. First, the painter makes the exact same expression than in chapter 16: (Chapter 63) And even the lord notices that the painter is getting more and more excited by the roughness. He keeps describing how the painter is reacting below (chapter 63) which can only increase Baek Na-Kyum’s arousal, as his words are again very graphic. Note that the lord’s pictorial “filthy” expressions affect the painter deeply, exactly like in his second wet dream: (Chapter 63) Therefore I come to the conclusion that in chapter 63, the painter is not crying, because he is really hurt and angry at the main lead. These are tears of pleasure mixed with pain, which is linked to BDSM. That’s why he keeps blushing the whole time. (Chapter 63) This explicates why he kept ejaculating, despite saying “no” or recognizing that there was a witness. He felt no longer scared or embarrassed, like in chapter 16, where he ran away to hide. With this new version of the sex marathon, the painter truly discovered his sexual preferences. Therefore, when we see this (chapter 63), we shouldn’t project our own emotions into the artist: pain and disgust. Remember this: the painter felt his blood running hot, when the lord grabbed his hair violently in his wet dream. (Chapter 6)

And now, you understand why the artist is scared to admit his affection to the main lead. (Chapter 68) He is still scared and embarrassed of his own sexuality. It must have felt strange in that historical period. What caught my attention is that we have two chapters where tears are mixed with pleasure and happiness (chapter 16-21), while we have two chapters where the tears are associated to pain and sadness (25-26; 41-42). Besides, in the last sex session from the first season, the painter was the one asking the lord to be quite rough! (Chapter 42) Yet, the noble couldn’t help himself showing tenderness and affection at the end with the passionate kiss. As a conclusion, the second sex marathon contains all these elements: sadness, pain, pleasure, anger and happiness.

6. Yoon Seungho‘s desires

And it is the same for Yoon Seungho. He likes BDSM and cosplay. That’s why he plays with the head-band (chapter 16), and in chapter 35 he accepts to be a servant or in chapter 49 a sex toy. Due their different sex sessions, he discovered that he likes being rough too. Therefore he couldn’t enjoy, when the painter was so passive. He recognized that he took pleasure, when the painter was showing resistance too. (Chapter 63) This explicates why he couldn’t stand the expression “I like it”. This was too insipid. So when he became rough in chapter 48, he truly hoped to provoke tears of happiness caused by the sensation of pleasure. (Chapter 48) However, since the painter ended up crying and criticizing the lord, he had the impression, he had failed. As you can see, the lord might have had a lot of sexual experiences, yet with the painter, he entered a totally new world: full of warmth and love, yet there was pain connected to pleasure as well. This explicates why he could open up and reveal that his real dream was to make the painter smile (chapter 63), which contrasts so much to Baek Na-Kyum’s dream: cry of happiness.

I deduce that Yoon Seungho discovered BDSM through the painter, and we should see this as a treatment for the sexual abuse. First, he is put in the same position than lord Song. Thus he learned that sex could only be enjoyable, if there was consent. (Chapter 79) Hence people saw the sex session in the shed as rape. Nonetheless, the manhwaphiles shouldn’t forget that Baek Na-Kyum was living in the mansion as a servant. Hence according to Joseon’s social norms, he was in no position to reject the main lead. However, for Yoon Seungho, it was different, for he was a young master. He had a title that was supposed to protect him. Consequently, the main lead can reproach the mysterious lord Song that he never asked for his consent and he would even treat him like a male kisaeng!

However, we shouldn’t forget that right from the start, the lord was seeking for a companion to share his thoughts and emotions. Due to the sex sessions, their honest conversations were limited to sex. First, they started arguing, because their couple had started on the wrong premise. Both were not honest to themselves in reality. Through their discussion, they were forced to listen to each other: chapter 25-26. Yet without any confrontation, they were not able to converse properly. Both of them were hiding something out of fear and pain, that’s why the conversation in chapter 47 failed too. As you can sense, their physical connection was never satisfying for the lord, he always hoped for more and tried to initiate conversations (chapter 35, 39-40, 41, 42). Both needed to learn to trust each other, but it was not possible because of their lack of self-respect.

7. Kim as a fake mediator

Remember that the aristocrat desires to talk to the painter right from the start, and later he wants to share his meals with him. And each time, Kim intervenes. First, he manipulates the lord to visit the artist in his study, well aware what Jihwa has already done. Then in chapter 50, he finally reveals the content of the conversation between Baek Na-Kyum and his scholar. And this conversation happens right after the lord asked to take his meal with the artist. He made sure that their interactions would only be limited to sex. In my opinion, Kim started meddling between the two protagonists, because that way he could refrain them to communicate directly to each other.

“There is only one rule for being a good talker – learn to listen” from Christopher Morley

That way, the butler hindered the painter to discover Yoon Seungho’s true personality. If they didn’t have an opportunity to talk, then the artist couldn’t learn through listening. That’s why the use of aphrodisiac in chapter 36 was actually an act of sabotage. The manhwaphiles shouldn’t forget that in chapter 35 the lord tried to discover the painter’s likes and offered the latter to join him to his room. But in order to ensure that there would be no conversation, Kim warned the artist about the lord’s bad mood. (Chapter 36) While, it looked like he was protecting the painter, he was undermining their relationship. He was actually using triangulation.

Triangulation is an approach used by many different people who share one thing in common: insecurity. As a result, they’re willing to manipulate others in harmful ways to get what they want or feel a sense of security in a relationship. Quoted from https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-triangulation-in-psychology-5120617

I had described the protagonists as insecure, and Kim could sense these anxieties and took advantage of it. And this is no coincidence that the painter’s love confession took place in the gibang. Kim was not present, and he could only join them much later. As a conclusion, Kim made sure that there would only be sex between them and nothing more. But when he realized that sex would bring them closer, as they started communicating, he separated the couple. They should no longer have sex together. First the valet used the conversation in the library as a justification, (chapter 50) Then he utilized the lord’s misconduct in the storage room. He should wait for the painter’s visit in his bedchamber. (Chapter 75) However, the valet could never stop the progression. The irony is that their first deep conversation took place outside the mansion. (Chapter 39) Once again, the lord had a teasing attitude, yet he was gentle and considerate. This is not surprising that due to their interaction, Baek Na-Kyum started listening to the lord. He took his questions and advices very seriously (chapter 40). Thus he confronted the learned sir about his future. As the painterofthenightphiles can detect, by communicating they began trusting each other more, and as such showing more curiosity and understanding to their counterpart.

After the kidnapping, the butler imagined that the lord would kill the artist for his abandonment, yet it didn’t happen. In reality, the lord prepared himself the painter’s bed. Then when he went to the barn in order to see what was happening, he heard and saw a painter saying “no”, while the lord was quite rough. So in his mind, after this sex session, the painter would be scared of the lord and would run away. What he saw was violence because of the past. Note when he tried to manipulate the master, he mentioned the main lead’s rape at the barn. (Chapter 68) With these words, he was implying that the low-born suffered the same fate than Yoon Seungho, because it looks like that on the surface. He imagined that he would achieve his goal (sending away Baek Na-Kyum) by using his knowledge, but in my opinion the opposite happened, like I had expected. What caught my attention is that the butler only mentioned Yoon Chang-Hyeon (chapter 68), as he had sent the painter to the storage room like his father. Yet, at no moment he made an allusion about lord Song, though he saw the sex in the barn as sexual abuse. He was thinking of the pedophile’s crime. He couldn‘t bring up the pedophile for two reasons: As a domestic, he can‘t badmouth the king. Secondly, he has to blame the father, as his own responsibility in Yoon Seungho‘s suffering would come to the surface. Remember my theory: Kim was the one brought the young master to the king thinking that the latter would protect Yoon Seungho.

Yet the problem with BDSM is that the couple needs to set the rules first, and these are strongly intertwined with “respect and love”. They have to communicate. That’s why the moment the painter accepts his affection, he is forced to recognize his own sexual preferences. This is no coincidence that in the bedchamber, Baek Na-Kyum voiced his desires after vowing loyalty to his lover. (Chapter 88) Furthermore, the chronology is important. The painter communicated first his thoughts and wishes, before they initiated the love session. (Chapter 88) This contrasts to the sex session in chapter 48/49. The lord had used sex in order to force the painter to share what was on his mind. Finally, in the gibang, the painter had talked a lot about his childhood to his lover before kissing his lover. (Chapter 94) They had a long conversation, where the lord could ask questions. This conversation ended with a love confession. (Chapter 94) This is important, because sex had now a different function. Sex was now a real form of communication, they would share what was on their heart. With their bodies, they would convey emotions. They would use the hand (chapter 88) or the kiss (Chapter 95) so that no misunderstanding would be created. Therefore it is not surprising that even during their love session, they would keep talking, and even express their desires: (Chapter 96) And observe that even after the love session, they continued sharing what was on their mind and heart: (chapter 97) And now, you comprehend why the schemers had to separate the couple! From this moment on, they would communicate constantly, and this outside sex. Thus when they are in the mountain, they can speak freely. (Chapter 102) They are no longer a noble and a commoner walking together, but a real couple. They are equals sharing their happiness and pain.

However, this doesn’t mean that their love story ends here. This marks only the beginning, because the lord has so much more to show to the painter. Their love will keep growing and affecting other aspects in their life. Moreover, they are now paying attention to what is happening around them (chapter 102) Here, the painter wished to understand why they were separated for so long. This means that Yoon Seungho has to discover the circumstances which led to this tragedy. That‘s how they will realize that the enemies are close to them. The lord has to recognize that he needs to share everything, like for example the discovery of Deok-Jae’s corpse. (Chapter 97) As you can see, the topics of their conversation will diverge more and more. I do think that he was incited to let the painter sleep in order to „protect“ him. Yoon Seungho needs to recognize that warning and drawing lines are not enough to protect the loved one. He will have to take real measures to turn his statement (taking responsibility for the painter) into a reality: he will have to fight for his right to happiness. Taking the civil service examination only represents one step. Furthermore, appearances can be deceiving. The pure artist is not so “innocent” in the end. He has definitely met his match in Yoon Seungho, though I believe that his role is to heal Yoon Seungho from his PTSD and give him closure. And this can only happen, when the victim of sexual abuse confronts his perpetrators, the old bearded men!

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My Tumblr-Reddit-Instagram-Twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support.

Painter Of The Night: “Respect and Love”

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 analysis called “A man consumed by lust”, I not only compared Yoon Seungho to a head-kisaeng, but also described that all the characters, including Baek Na-Kyum, would perceive the main lead as a man obsessed with sex. Striking is that with the entrance of Baek Na-Kyum in the main lead’s life, the lord got to discover this reflection about him which took him by surprise. Moreover, he realized gradually, how disrespectful the nobles and the servants were towards him. Therefore I came to the conclusion that the artist was not only associated to a mirror and love, but also to respect. And this observation led me to the following conclusion: Baek Na-Kyum is carrying in himself all the virtues which are necessary for a good social life:

  1. love,
  2. respect,
  3. justice,
  4. honesty,
  5. equity,
  6. responsibility,
  7. loyalty,
  8. freedom,
  9. tolerance,
  10. and peace.

That’s why I decided to examine the behavior of the characters under the aspect of respect and love, as all the other values like justice or tolerance are strongly linked to these two values.

But the problem is that although the commoner embodies these values, this doesn’t mean that he is truly tolerant, honest, just and respectful himself. If the manhwaphiles recall the first season, they will surely remember that Baek Na-Kyum wasn’t actually honest towards the main character, since his mind had been influenced by the scholar’s doctrines and Heena noona’s prejudices. Right from the start, he lied to the noble due to his preconceptions and his belief in rumors. What caught my attention is that in reality the painter’s honesty was only reflected in his body (his tears and his blushing) and in his unconscious. It was something that the low-born couldn’t control, but these honest facial expressions attracted the aristocrat so much to the point that he wanted the artist to see them in the paintings, therefore he utilized the mirror during the first sex marathon.

Right from the start, the artist was sexually attracted by the main lead, especially by his huge phallus, which was implied in this panel: and only displayed with the second episode from the Alternative Universe: . This explicates why he desired to have replaced the second lead (chapter 2) and got aroused during the threesome. The brush was focused on the lord’s hand touching the butt (chapter 9). He deeply desired to have sex with Yoon Seungho, but his conscious kept denying the obvious. And his lack of honesty is still present in the second season, hence he still perceives Yoon Seungho as man consumed by lust which is visible in the paintings. The artist legitimates his wish to stay at the mansion, because it is for the teacher’s sake, then later for the protagonist, who is in love with him. At no moment, he wants to become responsible for his feelings. He keeps resisting his affection and attraction towards the main lead. Why?

From my point of view, it is related to the painter’s huge libido. First, the readers shouldn’t forget that the low-born started erotic paintings of sodomy at a very young age, indicating that he discovered his sexual orientation very early on. Moreover, there’s no doubt that the commoner is quite kinky: his different wet dreams (chapter 2, chapter 6: sex with a stranger , chapter 56 ) expose his deepest sexual desires, the main lead should pleasure him. This explains why Baek Na-Kyum is never facing the lord and always passive in his wet dreams. This shows his reluctance to admit his kinky side. Imagine that he ejaculates, when he hears “you’ve made a wreck of me”, but not when the lover whispers “I adore you”. He even got erected again, when he saw the butler in front of the barn, which was noticed by the aristocrat, and he even had a climax in the courtyard. His reluctance to admit his affection is strongly intertwined with his strong sexuality. There’s this fear that he might get perceived as a man consumed by lust himself. If he accepts his love and as such his huge libido, he might get looked down and excluded. This is understandable, because he has abandonment issues. I believe, the readers should remember that the artist was scared of people’s opinion during the first season. From my perspective, although he has come to accept his homosexuality, he is still under the influence of the social norms: a man shouldn’t love another man. Besides, let’s not forget that Jihwa, as a reflection of the painter, has a similar mindset. He uses sex in order to disguise his emotions. As long as the painter is not honest to himself and as such doesn’t respect himself, he can’t be genuine with the noble. In my eyes, Baek Na-Kuym continued viewing the lord as a man obsessed with sex for many reasons. First he was too hurt by the teacher’s words. He never paid attention to the lord’s words and gestures. However, as time passed on, he never reviewed his perception out of convenience. With such an image, the noble was responsible for the sexual intercourses, and this attitude was even reinforced by the maid’s comments. But now, he is facing a dilemma, because his noona offers him the possibility to leave the mansion, but he refuses her proposition for futile different reasons: the scholar, his living conditions, the painting, the lord’s love… Only once cornered, he finally admits his love, but he describes it as something negative (he is scared, it is against his will). And this interpretation made me wonder about its origin. I have the impression that it is not only related to the brainwashing perpetrated by the scholar. I think that Heena noona could be the other explanation. Since sexuality played a huge role in the head-kisaeng’s life, it is possible that she has a negative perception of sex. Since she wanted the painter to remain quite innocent and pure, she sent him away. Her desire was to protect him too, but deep down she hoped that he wouldn’t outlive truly his homosexuality. If he was painting erotic pictures by the scholar’s side, she imagined that he would get happy. She had the impression that this would be sufficient for the artist’s life, because he would get “loved” and supported by the man the artist admired. Since Jung In-Hun gave her the impression, he was caring and selfless, she imagined that the learned sir would take care of the artist. And this leads me to the conclusion that she has a very romantic and pure image of love, because in her world there is a strong connection between sexuality, power and violence. However, she never asked for the painter’s opinion, she just sent him away, thinking that she was doing it for the boy’s best interest. For her, the boy would keep outliving his sexuality through art. On the one hand, this would explicate why Baek Na-Kyum is scared to accept his sexual appetite, on the other hand it also shows that love is strongly connected to respect. And for the first time, the artist is not blindly following Heena noona’s actions and decisions. So this scene exposes Baek Na-Kyum’s growth, he is transforming slowly into an adult, making his own decision, although his words ooze a certain fear and hesitation.

That’s exactly when Yoon Seungho comes into the picture. He will continue playing the role of the painter’s liberator. The aristocrat forced Baek Na-Kyum not only to admit his sexuality, but also his homosexuality. But now, it is time for the painter to accept his love and as such his strong libido. That’s why the moment the lord tells him that he can leave the mansion, the former will set the commoner entirely free. That way, the low-born can no longer use the excuse that the main character was living together with a man obsessed with sex. Let’s not forget that during season one, the main lead helped the commoner to not only recognize his own sexual orientation, but also to use his own mind. Therefore I predict that the aristocrat will be the cause for the painter to eliminate all the prejudices he had about people, to no longer care about people’s impression. As you can see, Yoon Seungho also embodies honesty, but a different kind: a free spirit. And this comes from his education, the main lead reads a lot and ponders a lot (chapter 61) (chapter 62). He questions things and people’s behavior , that’s why he is so obsessed with the “why”. He desires to understand the motivation behind the painter’s words and actions. In other words, he is looking beyond the appearance and surface. However, Baek Na-Kyum was surrounded by Heena noona and Jung In-Hun, people who value appearances very much. That’s why the head-kisaeng said that she saw everything. But what did she see and hear? She discovered through the town gossips that the painter had caused a commotion by running away. Then she saw the artist tied up and breathing heavily, and the noble’s lie could only contribute to reinforce her negative perception she had about Yoon Seungho. Besides, when she claimed that she recognized the artist’s painting, we have to wonder which drawing she saw. So far, when she opened the door, she only viewed a blank sheet of paper. And thanks to @shoei’s comment, I realized that the butler could have played a role here. Remember that the butler was asked in chapter 44 to throw away the picture of Jung In-Hun’s inauguration. And since we have a scene where Kim gave the ruined painting to Yoon Seungwon, I believe that in chapter 65, we had a repetition of this scene, but the readers were not able to witness it. The valet showed her the painting in order to confirm the painter’s identity. The other evidence for this theory is the absence of Kim’s eyes, when the head-kisaeng states that she recognized the artist’s painting. Therefore Heena noona jumped to the wrong conclusions. She had the impression that Baek Na-Kyum was still in love with his learned sir, and the hell-raiser was just abusing his power and position. But like I have already written many times, reality is far more complex and appearances should always be queried. From my point of view, the noble will help him to get stronger to the point that he won’t care about people’s gaze and gossip.

For me, the painter serves as a carthasis to bring out the virtues hidden in both protagonists due to the reflection. In other words, while the aristocrat purifies the painter by emancipating him from any prejudice and social norms, the artist cleans the lord by unveiling his caring and sensitive side so that the latter is forced to accept the existence of his heart and drop his fathers’ principles. The master of deception is in reality a person who treasures love and honesty above anything, but since he was surrounded by selfish and hypocrite people, he had no occasion to show his true self. We shouldn’t forget that Jihwa never showed his true emotions: his smile and cheerful gaze were masking his own insecurities. From my point, the second lead never allowed Yoon Seungho to see his blushing and, when he cried in front of his childhood friend for the first time(chapte 18), Yoon Seungho had already been moved by the painter’s tears.

What caught my attention is that although Baek Na-Kyum helped the aristocrat to see how disregarded he was by his peers and even Jihwa, the artist didn’t show any respect towards the main lead either. One might argue that Yoon Seungho treated the painter poorly, and even described him as plaything. Therefore the painter was not obliged to respect Yoon Seungho. However, the truth is that the main lead had other intentions in the beginning, if you examine the first two chapters carefully.

First, we shouldn’t forget that the story doesn’t start with Yoon Seungho speaking with the domestic investigating the creator’s identity. The real story begins with the main lead getting fascinated by the publications. Furthermore, the painter hadn’t worked for almost one year after vowing to never paint again. Hence it took Yoon Seungho some time, until the absence of new works made the lord realize that he could no longer live without them. He needed new erotic drawings. Besides, in the first chapter, we shouldn’t forget that Yoon Seungho even visits the painter to the tavern, which is really unusual for him. Let’s not forget that the noble only went to the tavern in chapter 57 after receiving the fake letter from lord Song. This is not a place the lord usually visits, rather Jihwa. This outlines the huge respect the lord showed towards the low-born. A high noble goes to a tavern, even talks directly to Baek Na-Kyum. In the lord’s mind, the artist should have felt flattered. And then we shouldn’t forget that when the artist was sitting in the study, he noticed the expensive paper and the different brushes at his disposal. This shows that the protagonist had made preparations for his arrival. Therefore I come to the conclusion that the noble had intended to invite the artist to work for him. He was his admirer and fan, hence he treasured the artist’s hands so much. However, the painter couldn’t recognize the respect and admiration the main lead was showing, because it was directly connected to sex. Since the lord had been brainwashed to accept sex as a normality (he lets the low-born touch his loins!!), the artist could only feel repulsed and scared due to the scholar’s indoctrination. Sex and physical touch are dirty, that’s why Baek Na-Kyum lied to the noble in the end. He disregarded the noble’s genuine compliments and effort. Since the noble had been hurt and disrespected, he retaliated and showed his anger. Striking is that the lord stopped talking after the second lie, though he was very talkative before. He is left speechless.

In my eyes, there’s a strong connection between the master’s violence and his silence. Studies indicate that persons in jail with a violent temper have often less vocabulary, which exposes the importance of words and voicing his emotions. It is also proven that the less you are allowed to express yourself, the higher the risk you get violent. I could add another example. It is well known, that a baby will scream and become agitated, when he is frustrated. Since he can’t express his thoughts and emotions, the only way to show his discomfort and anger is to scream. Since the painter denied his identity, the lord had no other possibility to continue a conversation. On the surface, in that scene, the aristocrat looked like a violent child killing the domestic, the truth was different. The situation triggered a flashback. And that’s the moment, Yoon Seungho started treating the commoner as a plaything. He dragged him to his mansion and kept him in the barn, until he achieved his goal. During the second season, I pointed out the ambiguity about Baek Na-Kyum’s status at the mansion: who was he really? A wife, a concubine, a fiance, a favored servant or a prostitute? Since there’s a reflection in this story, it came to my mind that the painter’s status was also ambiguous in the first season. However, back then it was different: was he a guest, a servant, a plaything or a prostitute? We have diverse clues showing that Baek Na-Kyum was truly treated like a honored guest:

  1. Yoon Seungho goes to the tavern like mentioned above in order to invite the low-born personally.
  2. He has already prepared the room for the painter and his study is next to the lord’s chamber, a huge sign of respect. The manhwaphiles should remember that the teacher’s room was further away.
  3. Furthermore, I believe that he is the one who took care of the painter, when the latter was sleeping on the floor. Remember that in my analysis “Who is this Baek Na-Kyum?”, I had assumed that the servants had to clean up the mess left by the low-born. However, since we have two episodes in the season 2 indicating that the lord cleaned himself the painter (chapter 45 and 59) and brought him to the bed (chapter 62 and 65), I came to the realization that in episode 2, the noble already washed himself the artist, and even organized the bed. Imagine this: a noble is taking care of a commoner. Yet at no moment the painter wondered who took care of him.
  4. We have two invitations (chapter 8) and (chapter 23).
  5. When the painter arrives in the lord’s chamber in chapter 8, he is the last to enter the room. It gives the impression that he was the guest of honor. The lord kept waiting for him. He must have felt restless, because he started painting something. And observe how he welcomes the artist. He is full of joy and smiling. And when the noble with the mole requests from him to send away the artist, his guest of honor, he evicts the arrogant aristocrat.
  6. In chapter 11, the noble even desires to eat his lunch with the painter. If the butler had not mentioned the study, then we have to wonder if the noble in his good mood would have invited the painter to his bedchamber.

One thing is sure: the lord did care a lot for the artist right from the start, but he made two huge mistakes: he never anticipated a rejection from the low-born, because in his mind he had everything what people would like to have. Secondly, he never envisioned that he would expose Baek Na-Kyum to danger, because for him the latter didn’t represent a thread to anyone. He was just a commoner.

Striking is that despite his care, the painter refused to remain at his mansion, hence he tried to flee in chapter 4. And in order to convince him, Yoon Seungho proposed the deal: if he paints for him, then the lord will help his learned sir in his career. With this new approach, the lord thought that he had finally been able to achieve his goal. But note that with this proposition, the lord was actually selling himself. He was in fact the one asking for a favor, in exchange he would offer his connection. Sure, we shouldn’t forget that the noble had not truly promised anything to the scholar (just an empty promise), but Baek Na-Kyum was not aware of this. At the same time, it revealed the lord’s mentality. This was his way to achieve his goal: prostitution. Sure, sex was not directly involved first, but since the artist was supposed to create erotic pictures, the boundaries were already dilued. And this is not surprising that the moment Jung In-Hun realized that Yoon Seungho was not impressed by his skills, he decided to use the painter as prostitute. However, in my eyes, the lord had already become one, the moment he offered that deal to the painter. And this shows that the lord was showing himself disrespect in the end, just to get the painter working for him. As you can observe, both protagonists didn’t respect themselves in truth, consequently they were not able to respect each other.

And if you look at many drawings created by the painter, you’ll observe that they all show a main lead acting as a prostitute, trying to please the partner: each time he keeps looking at the lover, in order to confirm that he is pleasing his partner: Either Jihwa is moaning or the painter is blushing or moaning, but the lord is always focused, starring at this partner. That’s why the moment the lord had sex with the painter, it affected the artist’s status. The latter could only be judged as a prostitute, because he was also doing it for a favor, for the scholar’s sake. Therefore the following pictures mirrors the prostitution, both protagonists act as whores in the end. While in the drawings from the first season, the protagonists switched the role of the “whore”, in the following painting they are portrayed both as such. That’s why the painter was not paying attention to details. As a conclusion, the moment the noble proposed the deal, he not only lowered himself, but also affected the painter. That’s why the teacher’s words are so painful, because he is actually the one benefitting from this deal. The moment the painter has sex with the main lead, he is indeed a prostitute. Yet the irony is that he is not doing it for himself, but for the scholar: This is the height of hypocrisy. Simultaneously, with these words, he makes sure that the painter can’t even enjoy sex, making him feel terrible.

At the same time, Yoon Seungho did treat the painter as a servant. First, he dragged him to the mansion and kept him captive, until the artist accepted the offer. Then the aristocrat punished him after the second drawing was ruined. The huge contrast between being a guest or a servant exposes that the lord did treat the artist as a plaything. Everything depended on his mood. On the one hand the lord acts like a happy child showing off to his other guests: (chapter 8), on the other hand, when he claims this in front of Min, he is hiding the truth as well. Yoon Seungho had to make a deal with the painter, hence the latter wasn’t truly a plaything… but a person who was using the noble’s wealth and power for his loved one, the teacher. And by praising the painter’s talents, he contributed to expose the artist to danger, to make him the target of envious or jealous aristocrats. In these moments, the main lead showed an immaturity. However, we shouldn’t underestimate the role played by Kim here. The latter ensured that the artist would lose his title “honored guest”, when he suggested to his lord to visit him in the study in chapter 11.

However, if you pay attention to the chronology of the lord’s wrongdoings (the poem, the punishment in chapter 11…), you’ll notice that the artist didn’t respect the lord either. Yet this is not obvious, because Baek Na-Kyum doesn’t get physically violent. Yoon Seungho took the poem without asking, so did the painter with the expensive wine. He never wondered about the origin of the wine. When the lord criticizes the poem, the painter says that he is not allowed to make fun of it, because he is just a man consumed by lust. Nonetheless, Baek Na-Kyum has also no right to say this to Yoon Seungho either, because he is just a commoner. That’s why the master reminds him of his own social status, he is just a peasant. And we have a new version of this situation in chapter 41, when Baek Na-Kyum yells at the main lead, although the latter was caring and showed concern. He desired to know the origin of the painter’s sadness. However, the artist was unwilling to explain the cause for this. That’s why the lord slapped the artist, reminding of his place. He was a lord and the host here.

When the lord gets angry with the painter in chapter 11 due to the ruined image, the painter apologizes to the noble, yet from my perspective his apology is not really genuine, especially if you contrast this to the one in chapter 62: Furthermore, when the painter begged for the lord’s mercy, he was willing to do anything else, except to paint, , he was forgetting one important aspect: he was actually breaking his promise to the main lead. He was actually taking advantage of the main lead, because this meant that the latter would be the only one who didn’t get what he truly wanted. Baek Na-Kyum was here only loyal to the scholar, he was willing to sell his service for the main lead in exchange for his sponsor of the teacher, yet he was still refusing to create erotic pictures. Simultaneously this showed that the commoner started mistrusting the teacher, as he was suspecting his involvement. In other words, he was trying to call off the deal, while the scholar would benefit the most from him. And now, you can understand why the lord got upset and felt betrayed, leading the lord to threaten the artist: the low-born was trying to change the content of the deal, while Yoon Seungho was selling his wealth and connections for the artist. And since this story is build like a kaleidoscope, the new version of this incident was in chapter 38, when the artist chose to lie to his learned sir in order to protect Yoon Seungho. As you can see, both protagonists were disrespecting each other… sure, the master was more brutal, when he felt disrespected and hurt, but this doesn’t mean that the artist was totally blameless.

Then in chapter 30, the painter feels the need to pledge allegiance to the master in order to protect Yoon Seungho. From that moment on, Baek Na-Kyum swears that he will do everything the lord wants. This marks the painter’s official start as Yoon Seungho’s servant. He is no longer perceived as an artist “Will do anything”, explicating why the pictures started losing their importance in the noble’s eyes. So the moment both had sex with each other, the painter became “prostitute”, as he was doing it for the learned sir.

As you can see, the lord always did himself a disservice with his actions and decisions. Each time, he had the impression, he came closer to his goal, only to discover that this was an illusion. He even complicated the situation so that everything was so confusing for the artist. He was an artist, a servant and at the end a prostitute. Let’s not forget that right after swearing to follow Yoon Seungho’s order, the master removed the head-band from the painter, showing his desire that he never wanted him to be a servant. As you can observe the painter’s status was never clear, the lord had no real idea what he truly desired, as his unconscious and conscious stood in conflict. For me, he was already in loved, his heart and gaze had been moved by the painter’s talents. But since he was always rejected, he tried to find ways to achieve his goal, to keep the artist by his side, nonetheless he complicated more and more the situation and created walls between him and the low-born.

As you can observe, the disrespect is mutual affecting both. Yet, the one who is seeking desperately the artist’s attention and love is the noble, hence the painter has always had the upper hand, which he never realized. That’s why little by little, Yoon Seungho is always forced to give in. Therefore, the climax is reached in chapter 66: Yoon Seungho is unable to stop the artist so that he admits his submission and decides to choose the artist as his master: However, this time the commoner’s hand is not led to the loins, but to the master’s eyes and hand. That’s why I believe, the nature of their relationship will honestly change in the future. Now, they will start sharing what they have on their mind, the biggest wish Yoon Seungho ever had:

But Yoon Seungho was also treated as a plaything by the painter. If you pay attention, Baek Na-Kyum is actually the one using Yoon Seungho as sex toy. Note that the commoner only expresses his satisfaction (chapter 45) , but he never tries to please the lord… “he is always on the receiving end”, like Yoon Seungho observed in chapter 45. Finally, in chapter 49, the painter tells him that the noble is only there to procure pleasure to him: an affront and he shut his mouth with a kiss!! He is not allowed to protest, he has to accept his situation: he is there to procure pleasure. Yoon Seungho was definitely not pleased and even hurt, yet he let him have his ways, because he sensed the genuineness in the kiss. And now, the manhwaphiles can comprehend, why the lord treated the painter as a sex toy during the second marathon. He was following the words expressed by the painter to the letter, but he was switching the roles. Since he had been treated as a sex toy, then he was allowed to do the same. However, he refused to kiss the artist, because as a sex toy he is only there for a sexual intercourse and nothing more. And this was reflected in the last painting: this explicates that Min has the impression that Baek Na-Kyum is craving for sex, while in truth the latter was just longing for love. As a conclusion, both protagonists were treating each other as tools, explaining why they kept hurting each other with their lack of respect.

When Kim criticized the artist for acting as a spoiled princess, he was telling the truth, but here he had another intention: he wants the painter to accept his status as “servant”, in order to stop the artist from gaining more power over the master. Observe that the valet didn’t tell him, he should love the noble. He just asked the artist to act like a servant. And the return of the head-band marked a new turning point, because it showed that Baek Na-Kyum was now accepting Yoon Seungho as his master, and he was no longer a prostitute, but he couldn’t treat the main lead like a sex toy either.

As a conclusion, there was a reason why Baek Na-Kyum kept this image “a man consumed by lust”. That way, he could maintain a certain integrity: the master was the one with a huge sex appetite, while the dream revealed the low-born’s true nature: a man with a strong libido. Furthermore, the words expressed in chapter 68 gives the impression that the artist is indeed using the main lead: the latter provides him a roof and his material… he can paint. Then who is using whom here? That’s why I come to the conclusion: the moment the lord decides to free the painter so that he can decide about his own fate, he shows him respect. But at the same time, the deal with Jung In-Hun is cancelled. They can make a clean start. Yoon Seungho can no longer be used, he is actually starting showing respect to himself (although he doesn’t realize it). As you can see, both characters were actually acting like “prostitutes” or “servants” and were used as playthings. And since each action the powerful aristocrat makes is reflected in the painter’s words and action, I am anticipating that the painter will be the one who so that this rumor will become a reality: That’s why the moment the painter accepts his strong libido and his love for the rich main lead, this means he starts respecting himself. Consequently, when the master releases him and allows him to leave the mansion, he shows finally respect in its purest form. And with respect comes love! Thus, this will be reflected in the relationship between Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum.: both won’t be a prostitute, a servant, a noble or a sex toy any longer: they will be two men in love with each other.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support.

Painter Of The Night: A man consumed by lust

This is where you can read the manhwa. https://www.lezhinus.com/en/comic/painter But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes. If you want to read more essays, here is the link to the table of contents:  https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/07/04/table-of-contents-painter-of-the-night/ 

Feel free to make some donations/sponsoring: Ko-fi.com/bebebisous33  That way, you can support me with “coffee” so that I have the energy to keep examining manhwas.

I would like thank Luzy again for her observations, because her comments inspired me a lot.

What caught my attention is the idiom employed by the painter to describe the wealthy main lead: a man consumed by lust. These words were pronounced, when the commoner criticized the main lead for mocking the poor quality of the poem. Since he was just a man obsessed with sex, he had no right to make fun of the poetry and author. He was worse than Jung In-Hun in his eyes, as he lived in debauchery. Striking is that the low-born kept seeing the lord that way until chapter 47: (chapter 48) But strangely, the main lead never realized it, until each time the commoner had to externalize it. How did he not see it before, and how didn’t the noble recognize that the artist hadn’t changed his perception about him in the second season? Thus I will try to answer these two questions in this essay.

I had exposed that Yoon Seungho feared his own image due to his self-hatred. Consequently, it meant that he had to rely on others to get a reflection about himself. However, we have to imagine that neither Kim nor Jihwa nor the other nobles gave him a honest portrait. They had no interest to reveal that he was a man obsessed with sex. Why? It is quite simple. Yoon Seungho’s mansion had become the kisaeng house for sodomy, and Yoon Seungho was the head-kisaeng. If you read the story from the start again, you’ll detect how the main lead is actually disrespected by his peers the whole time. Jihwa enters the lord’s mansion unannounced on multiple occasions (chapter 5here, no servant is sent to announce the noble’s arrival, which is quite rude; chapter 10, chapter 12, 17, 43). He acts, as if he owns the place. Moreover, the noble with the mole requests from the host to send away the artist (chapter 8). He acts, as if he had a saying in this, nevertheless he is just a guest and not the owner of the house. Moreover, he requests the whole attention from the main lead, as though the latter had to follow the guest’s desire. . No wonder, Yoon Seungho got infuriated and ejected the man. The painter’s presence revealed the disregard the noble had for the host. Striking is that even after getting dragged by the topknot, the aristocrat demanded an explanation for this humiliation. He didn’t realize his wrongdoing. This is not surprising that the Joker’s friend noticed the change in the protagonist. (Chapter 8) For the first time, the protagonist didn’t allow his peers to look down on him and requested more respect.

In chapter 19, Min invited himself at Yoon Seungho’s house in order to taste the expensive wine. (Chapter 19) He imposed himself upon the main character, yet Yoon Seungho didn’t feel upset. In fact, he just accepted the suggestion by a silence. It was, as if the protagonist was not allowed to refuse the invitation. More surprising is the place where The Joker suggested this: the brothel, an indication that the Yoon residence is considered as the noble kisaeng-house. I would even say, his mansion is the real place for pleasure and vices. And now, you comprehend why Yoon Seungho was pressured by the nobles in chapter 33. In the past, he would have given in, yet this time he showed them that there was a line not to cross. (Chapter 33) Imagine what would have happened, if the noble had followed their suggestion. The artist would have indeed turned into a prostitute.

From my point of view, the young nobles considered the protagonist as their head-kisaeng, he entertained them and allowed them to do immoral things (sodomy, wine and opium), while they could maintain their respectability and honor. Yet, since a kisaeng belongs to the lowest cast, it signified that the lord could get mistreated, exactly like a kisaeng. Besides, only the lord got the bad notoriety, he was a hell-raiser, because the aristocrats desired to hide behind him. He was their scapegoat and shield for their debauchery. He actually embodied all the vices the aristocrats were doing in secret. And now, you understand why the guest in chapter 53 told Min, he wanted to having fun without ruckus. (Chapter 52) In Yoon’s residence, there was no parent or authority to interfere. This explicates why father Lee blames the main lead for his son’s sodomy. He corrupted Jihwa, while in reality Jihwa treated Yoon Seungho like his possession and his personal concubine. He was the one visiting his place and not the other way around, like a husband visiting his “wife” (chapter 67) explicating why Jihwa could only get infuriated and jealous. The “husband”, treated like a concubine, was unfaithful. The second lead was even perceived by the town folks as the mistress (chapter 45), in other words the mistress of the house (the second definition: a mistress is a person of authority and power). This explains why he could trespass the mansion, like he desired. He considered Yoon Seungho’s mansion as his property, where he could enter at any time.

But if he was the real mistress of the house, why didn’t he stop Yoon Seungho from fooling around with men? Why didn’t he act more responsibly? First, the young man was blind and deaf, hence he couldn’t truly grasp what was going on. Secondly, he was too afraid to confront the friend. Remember that he always played tricks behind the lord’s back. Besides, we shouldn’t forget that Jihwa was himself treated like a servant by Min. If the mistress is disregarded, then the head-kisaeng can only get mistreated. Moreover, the second lead never realized that the nobles’ behavior contributed to the lord’s bad sexual habits. The manhwaphiles should remember that the second lead blamed the main character for fooling around (chapter 57), yet his friend was the one participating to the sex session. At no moment, he reproached him his behavior. In Jihwa’s eyes, only Yoon Seungho was responsible for this due to his past. Yet, he never tried to change the situation. I would like to remind the readers that the origins of Yoon Seungho’s bad notoriety are quite complex. Many people had an interest that Yoon Seungho focused on sex and nothing more: Yoon Seungho (he wanted to hurt his father), father Yoon (covering up his cowardice and own misdeeds), lord Song (making sure that the main lead doesn’t retaliate), Kim (leading a peaceful life and covering up his own wrongdoings), the nobles… and in the end Jihwa. The latter always wounded the main lead by using the past in order to attach the protagonist to him due to his neglecting father. Since the second lead had obtained a certain control over Yoon Seungho, he saw no reason to change. He could outlive his sexuality and have sex any time he wanted. Sure, his dream was to obtain the childhood friend’s love, yet he never saw the urgency, because he believed that time would help him. For him, there was this hope that at some point, the main character would confess. Yet, with Baek Na-Kyum’s appearance in Yoon Seungho’s life, the fragile balance was destroyed due the sex at the pavilion. For the first time, Yoon Seungho felt true desires and pleasure. This detail is important, because it truly outlines that Yoon Seungho was living like a head-kisaeng. He had sex without feeling any pleasure, just to serve others.

And now, it becomes understandable why the noble claimed the artist as his possession in two occasions (chapter 8 and 33). First, he voiced that the low-born would only paint for him. (Chapter 8) He was clearly demonstrating that he would never accept to give up on the painter. Slowly Yoon Seungho started asking respect for himself from others. In reality, he is a noble and he is quite rich through trade. This explicates why lord Min used the wine as an excuse to come to Yoon’s residence. He couldn’t ask the main lead, if he could borrow the painter. Furthermore, this statement and the humiliation revealed that Yoon Seungho was no longer a pushover. Hence Black Heart was more careful around the main lead. From my perspective, The Joker imagined that if the lord got drunk with the expensive bottle, he wouldn’t notice the artist’s disappearance. However, because the wine was stolen, Black Heart couldn’t achieve his goal that’s why he asked for a harsh punishment for the theft. Besides, Yoon Seungho showed no interest to organize a sex session any longer. His eyes were already set on Baek Na-Kyum. Since his initial plan failed, and the lord was no longer organizing parties, then he could only use the sex sessions as an excuse to see the painter. (chapter 33) (chapter 52) Everyone among the aristocrats did see the main lead as a head-kisaeng, who had to please her guests. Thus Byeonduck created such panels indicating that the nobles had always taken advantage of Yoon Seungho. (Chapter 54) They look like conniving creatures. Their wish would get granted in the detriment of the host. And now you comprehend why the lord got so angry, when he saw this. (Chapter 54) It was not just a reflection of his own past as an uke, but he saw his actual reflection. His house was a brothel and nothing more, and his guests were taking advantage of him. That’s why he got so infuriated and evicted the aristocrats. They truly showed no respect to him. It took many months for the lord to recognize this. And now you comprehend why he abhorred the idea of prostitution. He wasn’t even realizing that he was still doing it. Therefore Yoon Seungho could only come to the conclusion in chapter 55 that he needed to confess. First, this night made him realize that all this attempts in the past were to win the painter’s heart. Yet he was well aware that with his last action, he had almost sold his loved one to nobles, thereby the painter could only reject him. Besides, he had another reason to expect this outcome: his self-hatred.

Under this new interpretation, the manhwalovers comprehend why the household had a terrible reputation. (Chapter 29) Since a kisaeng belongs to the lowest class in Joseon society, the servants could look down on their master. Despite his title, he was living like a head-kisaeng, therefore the staff showed no respect towards their lord. (Chapter 32) This explicates why they didn’t follow his order, when he asked them to keep an eye on the artist. Nevertheless, as time passed on, the noble started acting more like a lord, hence the head-maid accepted his reprimand and decided to treat him differently. That’s why she bowed to Yoon Seungho in chapter 46. (chapter 46) And by comparing the two last pictures, the readers con detect the butler’s absence. the latter was responsible for the past situation, because he didn’t want to get into trouble. As long as the lord was acting like a head-kisaeng, providing entertainment for the local aristocracy, the valet could lead a peaceful life and definitely sway his misdeeds under the rug. Moreover, he could even use the master’s authority and act like a lord.

But let’s return our attention to The Joker. When the main lead stated this: (chapter 8), he was looking at Min, for he viewed the noble’s envy in his gaze. Since the artist was not allowed to paint for others, then the only possibility left for Black Heart was sex. If the painter joined their sex orgy, then he could achieve his goal: taste the commoner. Therefore you comprehend why The Joker is determined to kill Baek Na-Kyum. If he kills him, then Yoon Seungho is left with nothing. He is like in the past: he becomes again a “head-kisaeng” with no right. But as you can imagine, the Joker is deceiving himself. I doubt that he would be satisfied with just one session.

The problem was that Yoon Seungho never sensed that he was treated like a prostitute, because they created the illusion that he was the alpha among the sodomy community. (Chapter 33) The lord fell for this illusion, and he would have never realized it, if the painter had not entered his mansion. I also fell for this illusion myself for a while, calling him an alpha, while he was disrespected the whole time. However, this doesn’t mean that the main lead is powerless. He has indeed connections to the government (exactly like the kisaeng-house) and he is definitely rich, because he is a trendsetter. Min keeps copying his clothing and the master’s windscreen is the same at Min’s pavilion and the noble with the mole. That’s why Yoon Seungho never got to see his true reflection. In his mind, he was either busy reading or fighting with nobles, while in reality he was having sex for the most part of the time. Moreover, no one truly gave him a true reflection, since they had no interest to switch the situation.

And this negative reflection is also palpable in the paintings Baek Na-Kyum created, yet curiously the rich main lead never saw this image reflected in the pictures for many reasons. First, his unconscious noticed something else, the painter’s desire, so that the lord acted differently towards the artist. (Chapter 2) Therefore the main lead’s gaze in the picture mirrored the image of a man showing true interest, warmth and beauty. Later, he only got to see the ruined painting, which triggered a huge anger, hence he didn’t pay attention to the image. Then in the third picture, (chapter 16) he was no longer interested in the creation, since Yoon Seungho had already started wooing the commoner. (Chapter 16) Here the second lead was exploring an unusual position. Although the protagonist could have noticed this reflection “man consumed by lust”, because Black Heart commented it as lewd, he still didn’t observe it. His gaze and mind were all focused on the painter and his face. Then in chapter 41, he never saw the multitude pictures of him having sex with the low-born (chapter 41), because his gaze was only focused on the inauguration drawing with Jung In-Hun. (Chapter 41) And the moment the painter accepted him as his sex partner, he showed no interest in the paintings. However, he got annoyed, when he saw the first new creation. (Chapter 47) It was unfinished, and it gave the impression that both of them were acting like whores. That’s why the lord was indeed a little annoyed and made the following remark: (chapter 47) And it is in this chapter that he gets to discover his reflection… or better said, Baek Na-Kyum hadn’t changed his judgement about him, which provoked the next crisis. With the last painting, Baek Na-Kyum reproduced the situation, where the master was focused on provoking reactions in his partner in order to force him to abandon his torpor. (Chapter 52) Therefore the beholder couldn’t detect any love and affection in this drawing, only the attempt to incite pleasure. This explicates why Min described this as salacious, and had the feeling that the commoner was only interested in sex either.

Striking is that in the first painting, Baek Na-Kyum used a big wallpaper (chapter 2), while he only used small sheets of paper later. In my opinion, this is strongly connected to the return of the repressed sexual desires with the low-born. What also caught my attention is when he painted all the situation, when he had sex with Yoon Seungho having sex, the characters have no facial expression. It was, as though the lord was treating the commoner as his sex toy at his disposal. And that’s how the painter explained the rape. (Chapter 41) For him, every action from Yoon Seungho was caused by his obsession for sex, while the lord was trying to win his heart.

And while comparing all the creations, I recognized that they reflect not only his image as man consumed by lust, but also the disappearance of Yoon Seungho’s past life as sodomite and head-kisaeng. First, the huge painting with Jihwa is ruined, exposing that the latter is losing his control over his childhood friend. (Chapter 2) Simultaneously, Baek Na-Kyum destroyed it because of his jealousy (under the influence of his unconscious). The manhwalovers shouldn’t forget that in that wet dream, he wanted to take Jihwa’s place, attracted by the lord’s huge penis. Yet, he justified it with his doctrine. Furthermore, the second painting with Jihwa is created on a small sheet of paper reflecting the loss of the red-haired noble’s influence.

Later, when Jihwa ruined the painting with the threesome, the result was showing that Yoon Seungho’s life as head-kisaeng was starting vanishing. (Chapter 44) from that moment, the protagonist was no longer hosting any sex orgy which led Min to take over this role. Jihwa’s gesture symbolized that the childhood friend was not allowed to fool around with other men. However, he was quickly replaced by the painter. Let’s not forget that in the noble’s mind, Jihwa was just visiting him for his own sexual desires. He never recognized the childhood friend’s feelings. He had no reason to see otherwise, since the second lead treated him poorly. (Chapter 59) That’s why, after having sex with Jihwa, the “head-kisaeng” neglected his guest and went directly to Baek Na-Kyum for the painting in chapter 15, because the noble is already interested to taste the artist. At the same time, the low-born got his first sexual experience with the main lead. (Chapter 25) And here, the lord couldn’t perceive his own image as man consumed by lust, because his gaze was looking at the painter’s expression. This exposed the lord’s desire to see the attraction for Yoon Seungho in the painter’s eyes. His eyes were always focused on the painter the entire time, revealing that he was longing for more than sex. He wanted to see a mutual attraction… in reality, he wished to see a painting oozing warmth and love, exactly like in the publications he bought. And note that Yoon Seungho never got to see the last drawing, because his heart was too wounded by the distance. He hated so much the idea that the artist considered himself as a prostitute, while all this time, Yoon Seungho was just longing for love. Striking is that the ultimate picture is a blank sheet of paper mirroring the transition. (Chapter 65) Here, the lord has finally cut ties with his past. This marks the start of a new life and the painter will reflect his rebirth. But as you can see, the multitude of pictures (chapter 41) only mirrored the painter’s perspective about the main lead. For him, he was just a man obsessed with sex, while in truth he was just longing to get love. The problem was that the protagonist had never been taught how to show love. Furthermore, Kim made sure that the artist would only see this image. That’s why it took Yoon Seungho a long time, before he realized that he needed to recreate the Wedding night, so that the artist would be able to perceive his true feelings. For me, there’s no doubt that at some Baek Na-Kyum will create a huge painting with the main lead, and the low-born will be represented as well. Both will be portrayed with facial expressions exposing confidence and love. I am even predicting that Baek Na-Kyum will paint a new inauguration portrait with Yoon Seungho, which will contrast so much to the one with Jung In-Hun, where the commoner had no face and as such no identity.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My reddit-instagram-tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support.

Painter Of The Night: Yoon Seungho’s love confession: “I adore you” (second version)

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.

Here, I would like to thank Luzy for her contribution. Thanks to her observations, I am able to get more insight.

The love session in chapter 58 represented a turning point in Yoon Seungho’s life for two reasons. First, it meant that the lord was dropping all the principles taught by his two fathers: father Yoon and Kim. He was no longer perceiving sex as a battle, but a symbol of love. Secondly, he was willing to reveal his heart and to become dependent on someone else. That’s why he chose to make love to the painter that night. Since the painter was already associating him to home, a synonym for family, Yoon Seungho had the feeling that Baek Na-Kyum was already considering him as a part of his family. For him, there was a glimpse of hope that the artist would come to return his affection. Yet, if he wanted to win his heart, it signified that the main lead had to confess first. But a simple love declaration was not enough, as the words would never be strong enough to convince the painter. Besides, the lord was quite perceptive about the low-born’s personality. Because the latter had never been able to have a different image from the lord (a man consumed by sex), he needed to present himself differently. Since their first night Yoon Seungho has known Baek Na-Kyum’s dream: showing his love through his body and words. For he was aware of the artist’s wish, he knew that if he recreated their Wedding night, he could move Baek Na-Kyum’s heart. He would be haunted, exactly like him. We shouldn’t forget that back then, the aristocrat had experienced himself, how Baek Na-Kyum had confessed, although he was risking to be rejected. He wanted his learned sir to see and feel his love. And now, you comprehend why Yoon Seungho chose to repeat the artist’s same gestures from their Wedding night. (the same kiss mixed with surprise) He not only initiates the first kiss, but he gives a certain innocence and purity to the kiss. He was still deep down hoping that if the low-born sensed his love, and even heard his love declaration, he would be moved and would reciprocate the feelings. Therefore we have the repetition of the same gestures from their Wedding night. Since the painter voiced the wish to be embraced, note that the noble never stopped hugging Baek Na-Kyum the whole time. He did even more: he kept the treasured hand in his own hand. That way, the painter would feel the noble’s love. The manhwaphiles shouldn’t underestimate the signification of the hands. The latter symbolize the heart, hence a confession is often associated to the hand. Let’s not forget that nowadays a married couple wear rings. So Yoon Seungho hoped through the hand’s grip to reach Baek Na-Kyum’s heart. Not only Yoon Seungho kept facing the artist, another signal for love, but also he ensured that their bodies would continue touching each other. It was, as if he couldn’t bear the thought of being distanced from his loved one. If you compare the aristocrat’s sex sessions with the artist and the nobles, you’ll detect that there was always a certain gap which contrasts to this scene. The lord is in fact showering the artist with his love. However, only in chapter 68, the manhwaphiles discover through the painter’s words that Yoon Seungho said more than admitting his defeat: . He confessed with the following expression: “I adore you”, the moment the painter hugged him back. He had the impression that his love had been perceived by the artist and he was accepting his affection. That’s why the following panel is this image: Observe the similarity (chapter 21) with the picture from chapter 62. The only difference is that Baek Na-Kyum is not saying anything. Yet, in chapter 21, Byeonduck showed us this image: And here is the question: why didn’t she draw the same picture with Yoon Seungho’s face in the front in chapter 62? It is important to recall that the panels represent the lord’s memories. He is remembering that night, when he declared “I adore you” after getting embraced. He can only recall the absence of the artist’s reply. Baek Na-Kyum never said anything, which did disturb Yoon Seungho. The lord desired to hear the same words from the low-born. With the absence of a real answer, Yoon seungho got scared. He had the feeling that despite his confession, he had not been able to woo Baek Na-Kyum properly. That’s why he put his head on the artist’s chest and heard his heart pounding. He was looking for a response. He heard and saw the heard pounding and wished to perceive in it a sign that he had been accepted. Yet, the lack of a reply from the painter made him feel very insecure… and his confession had been triggered by the commoner’s embrace. Nonetheless, the love confession was not made at the end, but during the love session. The only words Yoon Seungho got to hear was (“my lord”) and . The manhwaphiles should remember that during their Wedding night, it was the main lead who proposed to be addressed as “my lord”, that’s why this gave him more hope during their second love session.

And now you can understand why Yoon Seungho smirked, when he heard Baek Na-Kyum calling him my lord after waking up in chapter 62. For him, these words were now associated to illusion. They reminded him of the social gap. He was still perceived as a lord and not as a lover. The importance of the calling is even outlined in the following panel: (chapter 62) Observe that the lord stops his hand from caressing the painter’s cheek. That’s why he got upset, felt stupid. The artist might have mentioned “home”, but in a servant-master relationship. Baek Na-Kyum was just his domestic and Yoon Seungho his lord. Yoon Seungho could only get upset for falling for an illusion. But since the painter had hurt him with his embrace after hearing the lord’s love confession, he faked the hug in the barn. The aristocrat wanted to make the painter experience the same… giving him the illusion that his apology had been accepted, yet in reality he was deceived. That’s why Yoon Seungho calls the painter a conniving creature. He had the feeling that he had been played, because the artist never rejected his advances, but never replied to his declaration. Then with the commoner’s disappearance, he felt that he had been tricked. Let’s not forget that during that night, Yoon Seungho decided to drop his fathers’ doctrines, and since he had been abandoned, he could only come to the conclusion that his father’s principles had been correct: opening up and revealing his vulnerability would lead to defeat and humiliation. With Baek Na-Kyum’s vanishing, he was taught a lesson, therefore he could only become like his father. However, this was just an illusion. Yoon Seungho was not able to fully transform like father Yoon. Why? It is because his love for the painter is already so strong that it can never be destroyed. And if you observe the chapters 63-64-65, you’ll notice that Baek Na-Kyum was moved from the storage room to the courtyard , then to the painter’s study to finally end up in the lord’s bedchamber . From my point of view, the noble was unable to stick to his principles. He declared that the artist would only be his sex toy at his disposal, the reality was that the protagonist needed Baek Na-Kyum by his side.

Furthermore, in chapter 63, Baek Na-Kyum changed the way he addressed him during the sex marathon. From “my lord” or “sir”, the commoner starts calling lord Seungho

exposing a certain intimacy. And this was the trigger for Yoon Seungho to change his behavior. Observe that right after, he turns the painter around, so that they are facing each other. As a conclusion, the way the painter calls the lord is relevant, exposing that if Baek Na-Kyum calls the aristocrat “Seungho”, this will definitely move the lord’s heart. And we shouldn’t forget that in the painter’s dream, the noble keeps calling the artist “Na-Kyum”, a symbol of intimacy and love. (chapter 56) (chapter 66) The painter likes to be addressed that way too.

Besides, I would like to point out that Baek Na-Kyum’s body is clean in chapter 65, therefore we have to imagine that just like in the past, Yoon Seungho took care of it, which stands in opposition to the night in chapter 58-59. Back then, the painter had to clean himself and note that’s how he slowly saw the lord’s affection. I also believe that this new version of sex marathon was the master’s desperate measure to force the commoner to accept him and his love. Since the words and the love session had not been successful, then maybe his father’s principle (sex as a battle) could help him. Therefore the painter became a wreck.

What caught my attention is the difference in the love confession compared to the one in chapter 21. While Baek Na-Kyum just expressed his admiration with “like”, the main lead chose the same words than Jihwa’s: And these words from the childhood friend touched Yoon Seungho’s heart, he felt the power behind this idiom. This explicates why he mentions it to Baek Na-Kyum, exposing his biggest wish: And since he had been touched with these words, he decided to employ the same expression, with the desire to move the painter’s heart. However, as you can see, Baek Na-Kyum never truly paid attention to these words, because when he leaves the room at the physician’s home, he never mentions it. At no moment, we get to hear these words from the commoner. In fact, it looks like Baek Na-Kyum was more touched by this , because he had an orgasm right after. Why didn’t he react the same way with “I adore you”? From my point of view, “a wreck” is a metaphor, and as such it transports a certain image: a destroyed boat. The picture expose the power and the strength of the feelings. Let’s not forget that the main lead is a painter, hence a metaphor can help him to visualize the significance of these words. But since Baek Na-Kyum was turning his head the other way, Yoon Seungho never saw the painter’s blushing and tears of joy. On the other hand, the readers could detect that the master quite dislikes the idiom “like”. For him, it is definitely too lukewarm and insipid. First, he was pleased, when the commoner declared this (chapter 45), he imagined that he was slowly getting closer to his goal, until he realized his mistake. From my perspective, the expression “I like” is related to the scholar Jung In-Hun, because it is quite superficial and observe that Baek Na-Kyum utilized this expression, when he was acting as a “prostitute”. As you can see, the two protagonists have a different connection to idioms, this created a huge misunderstanding between them. And if the noble had not been diminished by his fever and influenced by his fear and insecurities, he would have noticed the happiness in Baek Na-Kyum’s face. Yet he never looked at the artist’s face later, since he feared rejection.

But since I explained that this night in chapter 58 stood under the sign of responsibility (read this analysis: https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/11/06/painter-of-the-night-yoon-seunghos-love-confession-wreck/ ), it means that when the lord declared he adored the commoner, he desired the artist to become responsible for him. In other words, the positions were switched, if the manhwalovers compare it to the chapter 40. Thus the moment the artist ran away, the lord could only come to conclusion that he was unwilling to take his responsibility. Besides, the lord could only envision the painter laughing, because a noble had asked from a commoner to become reliable for him. This explicates why Yoon Seungho imagined this scene.

Nevertheless, we have to remember that in the first season, we have two chapters about responsibility: chapter 39 and 40. While the main lead selected Baek Na-Kyum as his bride, Jung In-Hun chose to betray the artist and refuse to take any responsibility for him. He decided to abandon the low-born out of resent and anger. Therefore I am more than ever convinced that Yoon Seungho will decide to send the artist away, but not out jealousy and hatred. He will do it for the opposite reasons: He doesn’t want to bind the painter to himself, like his father treated him in his youth. Out of love, the lord will set him free. However, what he doesn’t expect is that Baek Na-Kyum won’t accept this offer and will argue with the main lead. Is Yoon Seungho breaking his promise from chapter 40? Remember that I already predicted a slap from the artist. There’s no doubt that Yoon Seungho will definitely mention that he only brings misery to the commoner, hence he keeps crying in his presence. Yoon Seungho will tell him that he is a bad omen for the artist, a new version of this . That’s why I believe that the lord’s selflessness will make the painter realize the genuineness of Yoon Seungho’s affection. At the same time, out of fear, he will call the lord “Seungho”, just like he changed his calling, while he was facing death. Cornered and out of fear to lose Yoon Seungho, the painter will be forced to declare his affection. I am expecting a new love confession from the painter containing the following elements: the painter calls the master “Seungho”, a new version of the following panel: . In this scene, Jihwa called him Seungho to stop him from inviting the painter to their sex session. Moreover, I am expecting that the painter will utilize his own expression to voice his love for the noble: : I am fond of you. Remember that these words made me ejaculate, so if this moves him, he will try to move touch the noble’s heart the same way. And after their third love session, the painter creates a new painting, where both protagonists are facing each other in a tight embrace. The new workwould reveal how the master has turned him into a wreck, but in a positive way contrasting to Heena noona’s words. Let’s not forget that Baek Na-Kyum ejaculated, when he heard this expression: You have made a wreck of me.

But there was a witness of Yoon Seungho’s love declaration, the so-called Best Man: Kim was spying on them, hence we only see his presence through the bucket of water. Note that we hear the painter’s exclamation, meaning that the butler could hear their conversation. And the lord’s confession to the low-born represented a huge thread to Kim, because so far, he had always been the lord’s right hand!! And since the heart is linked to the hand, it signifies that Baek Na-Kyum would become the noble’s new hand. That’s why I truly believe that the valet made sure that Nameless could kidnap the painter. We have to ask ourselves: How could Nameless be so sure that the lord would believe that Baek Na-Kyum had run away? He had not the time to change the foot prints in the snow and make new ones… but Kim had the opportunity and the time. Let’s not forget that the valet was the one who placed the protagonists’ shoes next to each other. That’s why he was scared, when he realized that the physician had seen something. He had to ensure that the doctor hadn’t seen his complicity and he wouldn’t talk. And if my theory is correct, then this indicates that Nameless is now aware of Kim’s participation. He is the only one who will know the whole truth, especially if we take into consideration that he has already planted a spy in the mansion.

As a conclusion, Yoon Seungho’s confession showed the lord’s true feelings and sensitivity. Yet, Baek Na-Kyum has never truly grasped the intensity of Yoon Seungho’s emotions, since he is still in denial afterwards. He still has difficulties to accept this situation and his own feelings. The lord had indeed reached his goal to move the painter’s heart, but due to the painter’s own insecurities, the love confession didn’t push the artist to reciprocate the affection. And it becomes understandable why the noble was so hurt after waking up. He had the impression, he had made a fool of himself, and the artist had faked his feelings with the embrace. Simultaneously, Yoon Seungho was blinded by his principles and insecurities. However, we have to understand that Kim played a huge part in the lord’s relapse and fury, a new version of chapter 50. He made sure that Yoon Seungho would distrust the painter’s words, therefore he used the expression “I do not believe” instead of “I know”, because he knew the master’s hatred for this expression. Belief stands in opposition to insight, moreover the butler utilizes a negation reinforcing negative feelings. Note that he doesn’t say: I believe, he didn’t run away… here, he was manipulating the master. And now, it is the painter’s turn to face his own fears and to make a real decision: will he accept to be sent away, as such be abandoned again (in his mind)? Or will he be willing to assume his affection and responsibility?

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support.

Painter Of The Night: Heroes 🦸‍♂️- part 2 (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa.  https://www.lezhinus.com/en/comic/painter But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes. If you want to read more essays, here is the link to the table of contents:  https://bebebisous33analyses.wordpress.com/2020/07/04/table-of-contents-painter-of-the-night/  I used again the following website for heroism: https://www.verywellmind.com/characteristics-of-heroism-2795943

It would be great if you could make some donations/sponsoring: Ko-fi.com/bebebisous33  That way, you can support me with “coffee” so that I have the energy to keep examining manhwas. Besides, I need to cover up the expenses for this blog.

In the first part, after defining heroism, I exposed the hypocrisy of Jung In-Hun and Kim. On the surface, their action made them look like heroes, whereas in reality, they were only selfish cowards. They faked kindness and even used the painter as an excuse to make others suffer. However, what caught my attention is the resemblance of the following panel (chapter 68) to the situation in chapter 53, where the vicious domestic Deok-Jae got beaten for hurting Baek Na-Kyum. (chapter 53) This made me realize that chapter 68 was a new version of chapter 53 and 54. Therefore I would like to compare these two scenes for two reasons. First, the contrast will help us to judge better the protagonists’ actions.

Striking is that both scenes contain many common denominators:

  1. a violent noble (in both case Yoon Seungho!)
  2. a commoner is victim of a beating (Heena noona versus Deok-Jae)
  3. Prostitution (the brothel –
  4. The painter is a witness of that scene
  5. Another noble, the second witness, decides not to intervene (Jung In-Hun versus Min) (chapter 53)
  6. A noble’s love for Baek Na-Kyum (Jung In-Hun (chapter 68) versus Yoon Seungho)
  7. A heroic act
  8. The painter’s reluctance to accept the protagonist’s love: (chapter 54) (chapter 53) versus (chapter 68)

In chapter 53, the lord caught the vicious servant hurting the artist. That’s the reason why he became violent, he desired to protect his loved one who was getting abused. Consequently, he was wounded, when he witnessed this. His action corresponds to the first condition of heroism (Acting voluntarily for the service of others who are in need). Then when he started punching Deok-Jae, he never expected anything from the artist, a reward or a hug. He was just acing on his emotions, he couldn’t bear the thought of seeing Baek Na-Kyum insulted and treated like a whore, thereby the second condition for heroism was met: Performing actions without any expectation of reward or external gain. Since he interfered himself, using his own body to stop the perpetrator from employing verbal and physical violence, I come to the observation that Yoon Seungho was willing to risk his safety, fulfilling the last condition of heroism: Recognition and acceptance of the potential risk or sacrifice made by taking heroic actions. Back then, the noble was indeed celebrated as a hero, yet if you pay attention to the reactions of certain readers, they are now calling Kim a hero. It was, as if Seungho’s past action had never existed. From one extreme (hero), he turns into a villain due to the second sex marathon and his attitude towards the painter in chapter 66. But if you pay attention to Heena noona’s description, (chapter 68), you’ll notice that here the kisaeng was not the victim, though it looked like it. In reality, the so-called violent and arrogant noble had been forced to go to the gibang. He was just a teenager. This means that Heena was lying here. And the lord’s behavior in chapter 53 proved her words wrong. He showed mercy, when asked by the painter. He never thought of himself in that moment. This confirms that the noona was lying in the study, and she was well aware of that. She definitely knew that the main lead had been the victim of physical abuse. Here, he was dragged by a black guard.

At the same time, during that night Baek Na-Kyum never saw Yoon Seungho as hero, because he only saw the violence used against Deok-Jae. He only felt concern for the jealous servant, he didn’t want the man to die by Yoon Seungho’s hands. (chapter 53) This explicates why Baek Na-Kyum couldn’t recognize the lord’s love in the end. The violence had blinded him, exactly like Heena noona had been blinded by her own prejudices. She was lumping the teenager Yoon Seungho under the same comb than the nobles. However, I would like to point out that her testimony represented a distorted memory. Why? It is because that way, she was justifying her inaction. Here, the person threatened and abused was not the noona, but the child Seungho recognizable with his hanbok. Under this approach, the manhwaphiles can grasp why she is not mentioning the helping hand in that scene, the black guard. (chapter 68) This is important, because in chapter 53, it was the commoner Deok-Jae who had acted like Heena’s description: (chapter 53) He had been insulting the painter and showed no mercy. Through this contrast, the readers can detect the kisaeng’s manipulations. It becomes even more obvious, when you add this scene from season 3. (chapter 99) We don’t just see nobles frequenting the kisaeng house, but also commoners! Heena’s statement gives the impression that only nobles are going there. This exposes Heena’s biased perception. To sum up, the kisaeng and the painter were blinded, though the latter had been influenced by the noona’s doctrines. This explicates why Baek Na-Kyum was in denial in the end and saw the lord’s love as a lie. Furthermore, this signifies that the artist experienced the opposite from what Heena noona is describing to Baek Na-Kyum: (chapter 68). In truth, the artist mistook love for fear. Note that in each confession, the low-born expresses a certain fear, while in truth his heart is already racing for Yoon Seungho out of desire and affection. In chapter 41, he explains that his heart is pounding due to fear and in chapter 49, he chose to reject the lord’s hug as a genuine embrace and decided to just admit his physical attraction. Since the lord had always been brutal, Baek Na-Kyum could never truly distinguish the cause for his heart pounding. And with this observation, it becomes obvious that the low-born was never in love with his teacher romantically, as he had never felt any heart racing for him. From my point of view, Heena noona was the one who mistook affection for fear. That’s the reason why she never saw the noble’s hypocrisy and cowardice. According to my latest theory, she is suffering from sex phobia [For more read the essay “Arrogant, filthy and lying nobles 🏯”]. But I am also suspecting that pride could have played a role as well.

But there was another hero during that night, Baek Na-Kyum, the low noble’s reflection. (chapter 53) He protected Deok-Jae from the noble’s violence (condition 1: Acting voluntarily for the service of others who are in need)), risked his own life (condition 3) and never receive any reward or gratefulness, in fact he never expected anything from the vicious man and the main lead. (condition 2: Performing actions without any expectation of reward or external gain). He even embraced the noble and his hug was totally genuine which the main lead sensed. (chapter 53) Because the former was strong, brave, courageous, convicted, determined, morally integer, helpful, selfless, ready for self-sacrifice and honest, the powerful aristocrat could only be moved by his action. This explains why Yoon Seungho chose to remove the headband from the low-born, the latter had acted like a noble person, he was a source of inspiration. (chapter 53) And with this new approach, I believe that when Min mocked the lord by calling Baek Na-Kyum a low-born (chapter 54), the main lead punched Black Heart, because he was actually protecting the painter’s name and honor. He no longer felt embarrassed to love such a person, Baek Na-Kyum was a true hero in his eyes. And now you understand why Yoon Seungho felt truly rejected, when Baek Na-Kyum called the lord’s love a lie. Sure, he asked for an explanation before (chapter 54), yet since the lord was acting under the influence of his heart, he couldn’t voice his thoughts and feelings properly. Besides, before reaching the study, he had been denying his feelings too. (chapter 53) The painter’s question was pushing the lord to admit his affection. However, because he had been in denial, the painter mirrored his attitude. (chapter 54) He claimed that this was not true. He had many reasons to think so. The noble had kept his distance from him for one week. Secondly, the lord’s hesitation and silence could only reinforce this interpretation. (chapter 54) Yoon Seungho was left speechless, because he was cornered. Since the artist was denying his protective actions, then he had no reason not to offer him to his guests. He felt rejected, especially when he saw the painter’s gaze: he could only glimpse “fear and denial” and not love. (chapter 54) He had thought that Baek Na-Kyum had hugged him out of concern and affection, yet he saw that he had misjudged the situation. And now, you understand why after that night, Yoon Seungho decided to confess with the expectation that the low-born would leave. He was able to grasp why Baek Na-Kyum was rejecting him. He feared him and Yoon Seungho had almost hurt him, he was not a real hero, like Baek Na-Kyum. In his eyes, he was actually the opposite: a violent beast hurting others. Therefore in his mind, if he confessed, the artist would get scared and run away. Yet, this didn’t happen which caught him by surprise.

Consequently, we have to imagine that during that night at the physician’s home, Yoon Seungho chose to confess properly, but the readers never got to hear his real confession. And here, I would like to thank Luzy one more time. She was the one who caught this detail: (chapter 68) When did the noble say that he adores Baek Na-Kyum? And remember that we have a flashback of that night from Yoon Seungho’s perspective: And this panel (chapter 62) made me realize that this could be the moment the lord chose to declare that he adores the painter. In this picture, the manhwaphiles have the impression that Baek Na-Kyum is whispering something to the lord, yet there’s no speech bulb and not even a moan. And since the painter is a reflection of the aristocrat, then this signifies that Yoon Seungho could have been whispering these words “I adore you”, especially after getting fully embraced by the low-born. Moreover, he experienced the heart pounding of Baek Na-Kyum (chapter 62) so that he felt compelled to reveal his adoration. However, despite the confession, Baek Na-Kyum was still in denial. And now, you can better grasp why Yoon Seungho was enraged afterwards and felt betrayed. He had confessed properly this time, and the commoner abandoned him for real, or better said, that’s what he envisioned. We have another evidence that Yoon Seungho declared not only his defeat, but his deep affection: (chapter 62) As you can observe, Yoon Seungho is also connecting love to fear, but in a different way. He was always afraid of admitting his love out of fear to be abandoned. And when he did it, the artist left him behind in his eyes. His nightmare came true, until he discovered that he had misjudged the whole situation. This repetition of misunderstanding proves me that chapter 68 is a reflection of the scene in the study from episode 53-54.

But now, if you pay attention to the chapter 68, you’ll observe that Baek Na-Kyum is still scared to admit his love for Yoon Seungho. He is definitely not brave here. That’s the reason why Byeonduck drew the commoner without eyes. He is refusing to face his own feelings. (chapter 68) First, he uses the scholar as his legitimation for his stay at the mansion. (chapter 68) Then when Heena noona pressures more the painter, the latter gives other justifications, like f. ex. the lord treats him well (chapter 68). Surprising is that he is actually mentioning others to legitimate his stay: the scholar, the master of the mansion (chapter 68) and “everyone” (chapter 68). But Heena noona can’t accept these excuses and forces him to confess his affection. However, even when he admits his feelings, he gives the impression that he is doing it against his will. (chapter 68) He portrays the main lead in a negative light (chapter 68) and observe that he is using the truth for his allegations. Yet, in my opinion, he is doing the same thing than Kim in the end. He is trying to put the whole responsibility on the lonely aristocrat. But what is the truth? Yoon Seungho might have dragged and mistreated the painter, but he also protected him and treated him with care, exactly like Baek Na-Kyum mentioned it first (“the lord is very good to me”). However, if the manhwaphiles look carefully at the artist’s second justification (chapter 68), they will notice that the commoner is just talking about the living conditions (a roof above his head and his art supplies). He doesn’t explain exactly how the main lead treated him well:

  • when he was sick, a physician was called and Yoon Seungho paid for the expensive medicine,
  • when the painter was sad and was longing for warmth and a hug, he tried to give him comfort,
  • when he was hurt with the spoiled rice, he looked at his injury himself,
  • he chose to eat with him and even gave his own meal to the painter,
  • he bought Baek Na-Kyum warm clothes for the winter,
  • and despite the huge betrayal and his agony, he made himself a bed for the painter and put some fire in the storage room, (chapter 62) (chapter 61)

This truly shows that truth and reality are far more complex than anything. Hence prejudices are not helping either. A commoner can also be violent and jealous, just like a noble can be tender and protective. Furthermore, reducing people to words like “rapist” or “psychopath” or “monster” or “racist” are not reflecting, how people truly are. A person shouldn’t be reduced to one action. Besides, like I explained, Kim and other people played a huge role in the lord’s brutal behavior. He made bad decisions, because people employed their knowledge about his weaknesses to trigger reactions in him. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that Yoon Seungho is innocent. My point is that the share of responsibility can’t be placed on only one person. And Baek Na-Kyum might have been a hero in chapter 53, yet in chapter 68 he can’t be considered as a hero. He was not willing to assume any responsibility for his feelings. He was still scared, too afraid of embracing such a powerful person. As a conclusion, Baek Na-Kyum is still not accepting his love for Yoon Seungho, but Heena noona was not able to convince him to leave the property either. That’s why at the end, she could only portray the main lead as a bad omen.

For me, Heena noona was replacing the vicious servant. Yet instead of abuse, she legitimated her intervention out of concern and love. In other words, she embodies the positive reflection of Deok-Jae. However she failed too in her tentative to convince the son and brother to follow her. And since the painter refuses to leave the study, there exists only one person who can make him leave the mansion: Yoon Seungho.

  1. Due to Kim’s words, Yoon Seungho is determined to allow Baek Na-Kyum to leave the property. He is giving up on his resolution: (chapter 63)
  2. This time, he won’t question Heena noona’s intervention contrary to chapter 53 (“Who do you think you are to put hands on him?”). He won’t chase her away, like he announced it so loudly in chapter 68.
  3. Kim manipulated Yoon Seungho by bringing up the past, therefore he mentioned his father. The manhwaphiles should remember that the latter had imprisoned the teenager (chapter 57), therefore Kim desired to push him to make the opposite decision. Since his father kept him captive, then Yoon Seungho should renounce on Baek Na-Kyum, because he doesn’t want to be like his own father. Kim knows Yoon Seungho’s good heart and wishes to utilize it to his own benefit.

That’s the reason why I believe that once Kim was caught in the act, Kim chose to use the painter not only to justify his disobedience (chapter 68), but also to push Yoon Seungho to accept the painter’s departure. This explicates why Yoon Seungho didn’t enter the study and waited for the kisaeng’s departure. (chapter 69) Don’t forget that in episode 68, we have Yoon Seungho getting dragged against his will. (chapter 68) Since in chapter 53/54, the lord showed his love by using violence in order to protect the painter, the latter couldn’t detect and accept the lord’s feelings. Thus it becomes comprehensible why the author selected passivity and silence for Yoon Seungho in chapter 68/69. He was doing the opposite from the night in episode 53/54! This is important, because that way, he let Baek Na-Kyum make a choice. That way, it was visible that the painter was willing to remain by his side. (chapter 68) At the same time, with this move, the main lead had cornered the artist. The latter could no longer use the lord as an excuse for his stay. By offering the painter the opportunity to leave, Yoon Seungho acts like a “hero” again. He helps Heena noona in the need (her desire to protect her adoptive son), he is expecting no reward, since he is giving up on the love of his life. Finally, he is risking his own life, because the moment he pushes the low-born away, it means that Yoon Seungho is giving up on his life. He has no longer a purpose to keep living. The artist was the only reason why he didn’t lose totally his sanity during that night (chapter 62-64). He reveals his selflessness in the purest form. However in season 2, it was not detectable, only through the mind’s eye. Yet, this interpretation was proven correct at the end of season 3. Once Yoon Seungho believed that his lover had died, he risked everything for his lover: his name and wealth. He no longer cared, for he had lost his reason to live. (chapter 102) So was he acting like a hero here?

  • Acting voluntarily for the service of others who are in need, whether it is for an individual, a group, or a community
  • Performing actions without any expectation of reward or external gain
  • Recognition and acceptance of the potential risk or sacrifice made by taking heroic actions

Yes, because he saved the painter’s life. Don’t forget that he was alone against three. If he had spared them… they could have testified against him. Secondly, Min could have broken his promise once Yoon Seungho had showed mercy. (chapter 102) Black Heart had already stated this before: (chapter 102) Yoon Seungho had already stabbed lord Jang, therefore he could be punished for this action, even if he spared the aristocrats. In reality, there was only one solution for Yoon Seungho now: to kill them all. Why? Like mentioned above, Min would have backstabbed him. Moreover once arrested, the main lead wouldn’t have been able to protect Baek Na-Kyum. The latter would have ended in Min’s hands. Nonetheless, the lord was not acting rationally during this night. He was guided by his emotions exactly like in chapter 53/54. The only difference is that he was acting like a cold-blooded killer. The rage and pain were only palpable in his gaze. (chapter 102) The irony is that the Joker had reproached this to the main figure in chapter 53: (chapter 53) He had been a killjoy, for he had showed mercy! As you can see, Black Heart’s words came back to bite him. (chapter 102) He didn’t stop, because Min asked him to. The gods were showing to Min the cruel reality: violence is not a game! And the painter’s soul and heart got spared during that night. Since he was unconscious, he never saw the bloodbath. The goddess showed mercy to the pure artist. He was rewarded for his bravery and good heart. He had remained loyal to his lover. He never believed in the manipulations of the schemers or gave in to the perpetrators. He resisted till the end to the point that he risked his own life too. Just like his lover, he was a hero. (chapter 102) And this brings me to the following observation: Heena described the nobles as violent and arrogant liars, but she occulted the reasons why a lord would employ violence and deceptions. Yoon Seungho didn’t become ruthless, because he likes brutality. He was forced to, and it is the same with the lie! There is no ambiguity that Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum will have to lie concerning the bloodbath. It will be a new version of this scene: (chapter 11) He lied in order to protect the learned sir! He took even responsibility for the crime. Both have to lie in order to protect each other.

This is important, because lie also stood in the center of that fateful night. (chapter 53) (chapter 54) From my point of view, the lord’s rescue in chapter 53 left a deep impression on the painter. This is no coincidence that during the kidnapping. Baek Na-Kyum screamed for Yoon Seungho’s help. (chapter 60) He was hoping for his arrival. He was already considering him as his lord and knight in shining armor. And at the end of season 3, the painter hoped the same! (chapter 99) Yoon Seungho was his hero and protector. It is because the painter had perceived the noble’s true personality. He was humble, generous, but more importantly, he was a man of honor. He would keep his promises!

As you can see, their courage reflected the deepness of their mutual affection. In other words, fear and love can be compatible! Out of fear for the loved one, they will do anything. This stands in opposition to the kisaeng’s statement: (chapter 68) This new perception reinforces my judgement about Heena. During that night, the kisaeng was definitely no hero. (chapter 68)

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My Reddit-Instagram-Tumblr-Twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and for the support, particularly, I would like to thank all the new followers and people recommending my blog.

Painter Of The Night: Kim’s power – part 2

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 first part, I exposed why Kim should be perceived as a villain and not as hero. Many readers believed that the butler’s words would always reflect the truth, while in reality it wasn’t the case. I have already unveiled, how the valet lied in chapter 11, 29, 35, 67 and 68. Nevertheless, with just a few examples, I don’t think that many readers are willing to change their opinion about the valet, and even question the genuineness of his concerns and advices. That’s why I desire to continue deconstructing the myth about Kim as hero.

Therefore I will add another lie, which my reader Luzy noticed. In chapter 17, Kim is asked why he brought back the lord’s meal. He justifies his return that the master was fast asleep , so he decided to let him rest. However, the readers see that the lord looks rested and seems to be waiting for the butler. He sits in his bed, he has no dark circle. If he had been suffering from insomnia, then he would have looked like in chapter 35. And since chapter 35 contrasts so much to the episode 17, it means that chapter 35 is a reflection of this incident. This leads me to the following observation. First, Kim never opened the door. Secondly, he wanted his master to remain in his room, so that he wouldn’t know what was happening in his mansion. This would stand in opposition to chapter 35, where Kim led the lord on purpose to the opened window so that he would get jealous. With this comparison, it becomes palpable that Kim knew about Jihwa’s presence, hence he advised the maids not to approach the study. Kim was determined to protect Jihwa’s intervention. The final evidence for his lie and complicity is the absence of Kim’s eyes, a signal that the valet is closing a blind eye and a deaf ear to the incident. But more striking in this scene is the valet’s disrespect and disobedience towards Yoon Seungho. He made the decision on his own that the lord shouldn’t eat the meal. It was truly an outrage, yet due to his “concern”, I fell for his lie myself. Notice that the maid questions him, if he asked the noble. He denies it and uses concern for his action. Striking is that when Kim manipulates, the author is not showing us the butler’s face, but the door or the rooftop. (chapter 35) This indicates that Kim’s worries are truly fake, they just serve one purpose: to protect his interests. He would like to have his peace and if my theory about him being a spy, then he has every reason to remove the artist from the lord’s side. Anyway, Kim makes decisions for others (Baek Na-Kyum and Yoon Seungho) without asking them. It was, as if he knew what was the best for them, whereas in truth, he is doing it for his own benefit. Moreover note that he is just a servant, yet he acts, as though he stood above the lord by disrespecting his lord. For him, worry and kindness are tools serving him to justify his passivity or his disobedience. And the scene in chapter 17 is important, because it reflects the chapter 68, where Kim had also disrespected the master’s order. However, in chapter 68, he was caught in the act. For me, the incident with Jihwa clearly revealed Kim’s silent complicity. If the main lead hadn’t been awaken, then he wouldn’t have been able to protect Baek Na-Kyum from Jihwa’s violence. In chapter 17, the butler attempted to keep his lord in the ignorance by stopping the head-maid of the kitchen from warning the master. Yet, the servant failed, therefore in chapter 18 he stood behind the maid. That’s Kim’s other MO. If someone has to be blamed for this ruckus, then it should be the head-maid, explicating why Kim always hides behind others (chapter 29, chapter 50, chapter 65). In chapter 18, once he realized that Yoon Seungho was not angry, then he could act as a docile, but strong servant, hence his position was switched again. Later he stood in front of the maid. With this new interpretation, Kim’s visit to the doctor in chapter 65 appears in a different light as well. Here, he is actually threatening the physician, (“are you trying to have me killed?”), saying that he will reveal the doctor’s passivity and silence to Yoon Seungho in order to scare the poor man. With this attitude, he can ensure that the doctor won’t testify and at the same time, if his secret is leaked, then Kim can make sure that the physician takes the whole blame. He hides behind him to take the responsibility for the abduction. That’s why the man begs for his mercy. And this incident clearly exposes Kim’s scheme and manipulation. In this scene, the butler acts like a lord, therefore we have the following expressions “I beg you”, “spare me”, which are usually addressed to a noble. Yet, since Kim is just a servant, he can’t become violent himself. He just needs to employ the lord as his weapon. As a conclusion, the main lead is definitely his puppet, who will help him to get rid of any source of trouble. However, we shouldn’t forget that in this chapter 65, the valet reveals his complicity, as he realized that the physician had noticed something. He had no idea if the poor man had noticed his involvement. He needed to make sure that the doctor didn’t talk, because if he did, then the noble might also come to question the domestic’s whereabouts.

As you could see, Kim is not just a liar, but also an excellent manipulator, because he uses his knowledge to his advantage, like in chapter 19. Here, he feigns ignorance concerning the culprit’s identity for the disappearance of the expensive wine. There’s no ambiguity that he knew, since he had no eyes in the picture. Yet he hoped that this incident would cause a riff between his master and the painter. Imagine in this scene, Min even asked for the thief’s death. Yet, nothing happened, because the lord covered up his “crime”. In other words, Yoon Seungho saved his life. However, the lord was not celebrated as a hero in this scene. And like I explained it before, I am even suspecting that Kim left the bottle on purpose, expecting that the artist would take it. And now, I have found a proof for this theory. If Baek Na-Kyum had truly stolen the wine, then he wouldn’t have drunk it in the open. Note that he is not hiding at all. From my point of view, Kim used the painter’s ignorance to his advantage (“ignorance is a blessing for the perpetrator”), and he just didn’t expect his master’s reaction. Finally, when Yoon Seungho reveals the incident to Baek Na-Kyum the next morning, the low-born is embarrassed and gives quickly a fake excuse, because he realizes that he was the cause for the ruckus. From my point of view, the commoner had no idea about the true value of the alcohol, and only discovered it with Yoon Seungho’s revelation. That’s why his lie was easily discovered, the artist was only reacting to the lord’s words and indirect questioning. He had to give himself an alibi so quickly. Note that he didn’t feel guilty, until he heard the truth. In other words, Kim applied his philosophy in Baek Na-Kyum’s case. For the butler, the painter’s ignorance and innocence was a blessing, because this could help the domestic to get rid of him. For me, the chapter 19 and 23 are strongly intertwined, therefore we should see the valet’s leitmotiv in a different approach. With only these two examples (17-19), it becomes visible that the valet Kim has already targeted the artist. However, the lord was capable to protect him twice. That’s why I would like to revisit the circumstances of the rape at the pavilion. But for that, we need to examine the previous chapters (23 and 24) closer.

What caught my attention is the conversation between Kim and Baek Na-Kyum. The butler kept using the question word “why” which can not be a coincidence. In other words, Kim was digging for information, as he is well aware that knowledge is power. At the same time, it indicates that Yoon Seungho’s obsession for the “why” is related to the valet. From my point of view, the servant must have asked the main lead the same questions in the past. Yet, since Yoon Seungho’s affection was genuine, the latter never suspected the true intentions behind the interrogation. Therefore, this scene exposes that Kim is already working as a spy, as he is invading the painter’s privacy, trying to figure out the true nature of the relationship between the master and his “guest”.

Let’s not forget that we could see how he utilizes his knowledge to his advantage (chapter 11, 12, 17, 19, 35, 65, 67, 68). Due to the artist’s innocence, the butler discovered that Baek Na-Kyum had not only forgotten his love confession addressed to the wrong person, but also he had been tasked to paint a new drawing for the lord. That’s how Kim realized that Baek Na-Kyum’s privileges were related to their first night: the lord’s visit in his study the next morning, he even lets deliver a potion for the hangover, the absence of new sex sessions, the invitation to the hunt and his protectiveness. Since Yoon Seungho was expecting a picture of their Wedding night, the valet could only deduce the importance of the sexual encounter. He recognized that Yoon Seungho was already in love with the painter and he desired to get a picture of their night together. Nevertheless, we should recall that the butler was also present, when he heard the artist’s confession. (chapter 19) So he knew that the artist was in love with his teacher. As a conclusion, he was aware of the existence of the love triangle. And through the interrogation, he could fill all the blanks. He thought that he was the only one owning the truth, yet he was wrong. He could only judge Jung In-Hun, from what he saw. But more importantly, with this conversation, the valet got aware that the new painting Baek Na-Kyum had created was not representing their first night. That’s why I judge his advice to the painter in a new light. He refused to give any clue to Baek Na-Kyum, while the latter complained about his lack of insight. The butler was deliberately misleading the commoner. On the surface, it looks like he is saying that what happened that night, should be forgotten… Yet in truth, he means something else. He is speaking about himself. For Kim, it is a blessing that Baek Na-Kyum doesn’t remember and doesn’t know what happened, because he couldn’t profit of his “power” over the main lead. If he had remembered their night and had accepted the invitation, this meant that he was acknowledging the lord as his lover. This would signify that Kim’s position as the lord’s right-hand was threatened. The readers should remember that Kim’s power comes from the master’s genuine affection and closeness.

On the other hand, the butler can take advantage of the situation, a repetition of chapter 19. For the butler, ignorance is a blessing, because he still can change the actual situation. That’s why these words are exposing the valet’s hypocrisy. If the artist is left in the ignorance, then he can’t take Kim’s position or influence the main lead. Besides, his words could be judged as a warning: “lie low”, “remain out of his sight” signifies that Baek Na-Kyum is not allowed to get close to Yoon Seungho, because the butler will aim at him, making sure that he loses the master’s favor. As you can detect, Kim’s best advice contains so many layers, and shouldn’t be treated so lightly.

Striking is that after the painter’s admission, he leaves him. And there’s a reason for that. He has achieved his goal, he has gained a new insight about the actual situation. Baek Na-Kyum is now favored, because their night together left a deep impression on the noble, nonetheless he is clueless about the change. Furthermore, if the love triangle was revealed, and as such Yoon Seungho would get rejected, this would push the main character to cut ties with Baek Na-Kyum and the teacher. The servant definitely knew about the lord’s past tragedy: his suffering due to abandonment, rejection and jealousy. From my perspective, he decided to use the lord’s jealousy and insecurities to his benefit. That’s why he ensured to keep them alive. With his self-hatred, the lord would come to rely more on him.

And now, if you pay attention to the chapter 24, you’ll notice two important elements: the role played by valet Kim and the chronology is disrupted. Striking is that the butler announces that the lord desires to meet the painter at the pavilion in front of Jung In-Hun. This is relevant, since the latter was already very jealous of the artist. He had observed the lord and the commoner at the end of chapter 23 and felt unhappy. So Kim ensured that the scholar would hear this. Secondly, the manhwalovers can observe the absence of the butler’s eyes, when he expresses his emotions. For me, this is a signal that the valet is deceiving the scholar and the painter. And if we think carefully, then we can only come to the conclusion that the butler is lying again, when he claims that the lord is waiting for him at the pavilion. And now, you might come to the belief that I am suspecting the butler too much… However, I have different reasons to view his declarations as deceptions. Why?

  1. How can the lord be waiting for the artist at the pavilion, when they were returning together? I doubt that the lord would leave the whole group behind. Secondly, the artist and the teacher didn’t disappear for hours, only for 10 minutes. The lord hasn’t even changed his hunting clothes.
  2. Finally, we have to question the reason for the disruption of the chronology. We see the painter leaving the scholar’s side and following the butler through town, then we have Baek Na-Kyum’s memories, where he is shown painting the scene with the masturbation, before witnessing Baek Na-Kyum on the ground trapped by Yoon Seungho. Why did Byeonduck utilize a time jump and a discontinuation of the chronology? Since there’s nothing random in her work, I believe that this disrupted chronology had a purpose. She never showed us the protagonists’ arrival at the pavilion. What caught my attention is the position of the bodies. If the lord had been waiting for the artist, then they should sit differently. Note that the noble is closer to the entrance of the pavilion than the painter. After the rape, the latter’s legs are facing the butler who stands at the entrance of the pavilion. This would explain why Baek Na-Kyum couldn’t flee at the pavilion, as the noble stood in the way. He could only just crawl away… A reversed situation of chapter 16. And this indicates that Yoon Seungho must have arrived after the low-born who was waiting for him at the pavilion. So this would indicate that Kim lied, when he invited the artist to follow him to the pavilion.
  3. One might argue that Yoon Seungho’s emancipation occurred at the pavilion, therefore Kim must have just been following the order to send the painter there. Yet, the manhwalovers should recall that Jihwa was the one who invited the lord to the pavilion and not the reverse. If Jihwa had allowed him to enter his chamber, then the sex emancipation would have happened there. Yet, Jihwa sent the noble to the pavilion for one reason. He never expected the noble to have an erection and wanted to maintain a certain respectability. That’s why I am convinced that the words Kim said were not true. Besides, let’s not forget that his declarations shouldn’t be taken by face-value. Besides, we have again the absence of the eyes in the previous panel and the following picture shows the valet’s wrist, when he announces the invitation to the pavilion (reminding us of the observation that Byeonduck would never show the valet’s face, when he tells lies or manipulates). That’s why I see these elements as a clue that Kim has been acting as a puppet master in the rape at the pavilion.
  4. Besides, the lord knew about the painter’s shyness concerning his painting. He knew that he had brought it with him during the hunt, because he felt embarrassed. And he had been protective and caring so far. He had no reason to become rude towards Baek Na-Kyum, who had even accepted his invitation for the hunt. He had also seen, how an opened door scared him so much that he fled from his embrace. A pavilion would never be the appropriate place for the painter to reveal his picture. Therefore I believe that Kim was the one who told the lord that Baek Na-Kyum was waiting for him at the pavilion. In the noble’s mind, it was a reasonable suggestion, because that way the low-born would protect himself from the lord’s advances, since it was in the open.
  5. One might question about the butler’s motive for such a suggestion? What would he gain by creating a encounter at the pavilion? He desired a witness, the teacher Jung In-Hun. For Kim, it didn’t truly matter what would happen there. Either the scholar would choose to intervene or he would remain silent… yet he would see the main lead’s in his rage, making him realize how dangerous and instable the protagonist was. First, he had seen the low aristocrat strolling with the artist at the pavilion (lie from chapter 11). So he knew that the scholar was aware of the location of the pavilion. Secondly, the pavilion allowed him to see the event, while in the lord’s bedchamber, the scholar would have never been able to see or to react to the situation. Kim had different reasons for assuming that the low noble would follow the invitation. He must have witnessed how Jung In-Hun would stare at Baek Na-Kyum during the hunt, which could have been perceived as sign of jealousy. For the butler, Jung In-Hun didn’t like the closeness between the noble and his “loved one”. Kim misinterpreted the root of the scholar’s resent. Since Kim was aware of the painter’s affection for Jung In-Hun, he imagined that the scholar would be disgusted and jealous, if he definitely witnessed the lord’s affection for the painter. As the noble had always been smiling and caring towards the artist, Kim assumed, exactly like Heena noona, that the teacher was infatuated with the low-born. From my point of view, Kim desired to recreate a similar situation from the past, where Yoon Seungho would experience rejection. Remember that we saw the lord’s memories in chapter 55, where he felt abandonment and huge jealousy making him feel enraged. In Kim’s mind, the noble would feel insecure with the rejection, therefore he would turn into a beast. Remember what I wrote before: the lord had been protecting the painter (from 12 to 22), so Kim’s last resort was to use the master himself as his pawn in order to get rid of the painter and the scholar. Besides, we shouldn’t forget that at the pavilion, Baek Na-Kyum was forced to confess his love for the scholar in front of Yoon Seungho. This is exactly what Kim had intended and even imagined that the teacher would react and protect the painter. With this incident, the painter would decide to leave the mansion with his “master”, Jung In-Hun. However, the butler never expected that the lord would still claim the painter as his and wouldn’t accept the situation. I even envisage that Kim had predicted the artist’s death. If it happened, the lord had no longer any reason to sponsor the teacher. In my opinion, Kim misjudged the low noble’s hypocrisy. Hence he didn’t anticipate that Jung In-Hun would remain passive and silent, because the man needed Baek Na-Kyum as the lord’s lover. He wanted the low-born to be a spy. I have always claimed that Jung In-Hun witnessed the rape (chapter 29), but chose to feign ignorance, since it didn’t serve his interests. Therefore I perceive the panel where Kim announces the invitation to the low-born in front of Jung In-Hun as an evidence for my theory. Kim let it transpire to incite the scholar to go to the pavilion.

And observe in chapter 25 that after faking his concern for Yoon Seungho by pointing out the scar, Kim asks his lord the painter’s whereabouts. Why? From my perspective, Kim was expecting something and by faking concern for the artist, he would like to know the outcome of the encounter at the pavilion. I have to admit that I can no longer sense genuineness in the butler’s words. Striking is the idiom he employs: “that … painter”. He doesn’t give him any name, a real identity. His words are quite similar to Min’s expression “low-born”. In my eyes, the innocent protagonist is perceived as a function and as such an object or subject. With the painter ‘s absence and the lord’s reaction, he gets aware that something happened, exactly what he desired. In my opinion, he is already envisioning that he has achieved his goal. The drop of sweat is just a sign of discomfort, because once again, there was a ruckus, but it was necessary for his own interest, his tranquil life. The only difference is that with his question, he infuriates the main character, which must have been totally new for the valet. Moreover, when he says this , the readers (including myself) thought, he expressed concern and felt pity. But who is talking to in reality? Baek Na-Kyum is still far away from him, hence I doubt that these words were addressed to him. Furthermore, the butler has again no eye. That’s why I have now the impression that “oh dear” could have been addressed to himself. Now, he needs to clean up the mess. In other words, he feels pity for himself. Since he stands far away, he must see the body on the ground, so for me it looks like he imagined that the artist was dead. But to his surprise, when he gets closer to Baek Na-Kyum, he recognizes that the artist is still alive. Striking is his next comment: Now, he knows why the noble brought the horse. The main lead felt concern for the artist, so he was considerate enough to spare Baek Na-Kyum from moving too much. After detecting the valet’s hypocrisy, I could only sense coldness and indifference in this picture. The gaze is cold and at no moment, he talks directly to Baek Na-Kyum. His words are only centered on him and the noble (“I”, “me”, “he”). Besides, even if his eyebrows indicate a certain concern, it doesn’t necessarily mean that his worries are related to the painter, rather to himself. And the scholar had not even fled the mansion, which the valet must have noticed, since he was wandering around with the lamp. So in the end, Kim’s manipulation had failed once again. And if you consider that in chapter 35, he tries again to motivate Yoon Seungho to kill the painter out of jealousy, it becomes understandable why I believe that Kim had already envisaged his death before. Since the main lead had always been protective, he needed to trigger the lord’s rage caused by abandonment and rejection so that the main lead would turn into the weapon to hurt Baek Na-Kyum. Yet, it never happened like he desired. Each time, Yoon Seungho’s violent mood changed him into a sex monster, unwilling to get separated from the low-born. And now, you understand why I perceive the following butler’s words in a new light: Since each tentative to get rid of Baek Na-Kyum through the lord has always failed (chapter 11, 25, 34, 35, 36 and 61/62 – this one I will explain it later), Kim’s last remark gets a new signification. Here, he makes a statement, he is realizing that he can no longer utilize the main lead like in the past, the lord with his violent mood swings is no longer obeying him. Back then, many readers had the impression that the valet was telling a lie in order to diminish his guilt and responsibility (self-deception). But what if he was telling the truth in reality and was not trying to deceive himself? I would like to point out that in the previous picture, the butler is shown with his eyes and ears indicating that he is no longer closing his eyes to the truth and reality. Moreover, note in this scene, he is reminded of the past, when he abandoned the main lead to his misery, which leads him to the following conclusion. If the painter remains a favored servant, then everything is fine. The artist never abused his position or truly threatened him. So his privileged situation wouldn’t truly change, if Baek Na-Kyum was a “concubine”. However, while he is on the verge to abandon his plan to remove the artist from Yoon Seungho’s side, Heena noona causes a ruckus, which makes the valet change his mind once again. Observe the contrast: the closer he gets to reality and accept it, the closer the zooming on his face. So in the last panel, Kim is facing the truth and facts. Yet in the end, he is forced to correct his judgement, as there is another trouble. But what Kim fails to recognize is that there’s no life without worry and problems. As you can see, the chapter 65 is a new version of chapter 35… however this time, Kim is the one on the verge of giving up on his original plan: remove the artist from Yoon Seungho’s side.

Another point for this theory that Kim is a villain and a mastermind using people for his own happiness (leading a life without trouble) is that each time, Kim had to clean up the mess afterwards. The irony is that Yoon Seungho is unaware of this.

  1. the ruined painting: he has to put himself the ointment on the painter. Yoon Seungho forces him to see the consequences of his lies and silence.
  2. (chapter 17/18) Jihwa’s trespassing and mistreating Baek Na-Kyum: Yoon Seungho orders Kim to bring the second lead to the door and evict the amateur spy.
  3. chapter 19: Yoon Seungho gets to discover love in the painter, since the latter gets drunk and reveals his feelings. Kim has to hear that confession and he is left behind.
  4. Then when he asks the servant Kim to pick up the low-born at the pavilion. and later, when he takes care of Baek Na-Kyum, the latter confronts him with his lie. He knew about the sexual encounter and chose to remain silent. So he is once again forced to face reality and recognize his misdeed. However, the butler decides to run away.
  5. In chapter 30, the butler receives a punch for allowing the painter’s escape. And because of his intervention, Yoon Seungho felt even more insecure than before, which explains why he had a sex marathon. In his mind, the artist had to accept his sexuality and as such him as his lover thereby he would remain by his side. That’s why Kim had in the end to take care of the exhausted painter. The sex marathon was a direct consequence of the rape and desertion involving Kim.
  6. In chapter 36, Kim gave the painter’s aphrodisiac and this led Kim to lie to Yoon Seungwon. Therefore he got scolded.

I could add the list of the punishments Kim received for his lies and manipulations. It was definitely his karma, reflecting his own flaw. Kim is a person who is trying to escape from reality by closing his eyes and ears, with the belief that uproar and problems stands in opposition to a good and peaceful life. And the conclusion is that there’s no redemption for the valet. The latter chose to keep his original plan, as Baek Na-Kyum has become a synonym for worry and scandal in his eyes. That’s why I am more than ever convinced that he will participate in the next kidnapping and unlike in the past, he won’t just be a manipulator and mastermind, but a real perpetrator. And my final observation is the following: since Kim manipulated the situation in chapter 24/25, the readers have to question the butler’s responsibility in the rape. Kim could have revealed the truth to the main leads, but he chose not. This shows that Kim never acted like a father or a true advisor and allowed the situation to escalate. And it is the same for the teacher who witnessed the violence and decided to feign ignorance. As you can see, the whole situation is far more complex than it looks like.

I still have more to say about Kim… Therefore there will be a part 3.

Feel free to comment. If you have any suggestion for topics or manhwas, feel free to ask. If you enjoyed reading it, retweet it or push the button like. My tumblr-twitter account is: @bebebisous33. Thanks for reading and the support.

Painter Of The night: Kim’s power (part 1)

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.

I am well aware that some readers will be upset, if they read this essay, especially Kim’s stans. However, I can no longer postpone this topic, a real portray of the so-called “loyal valet”. I have to admit that Byeonduck even deceived me, as I let my first impressions about the butler misinterpret his past actions. For example, I had determined that Kim had helped the painter to escape in chapter 29. I had explained his behavior by writing that he felt sorry for him or he gave the artist the aphrodisiac in order to make his lord happy. He had realized the master’s affection for the painter. Yet, this was my wishful thinking in truth. Kim had other reasons to act like that, which I only recognized around chapter 62. This made me realize that I had been blind to the truth for a long time, because I had paid too much attention to the pictures concerning him and his words. It signifies that I trusted too much my eyes. From my point of view, the author of Painter Of The Night desires us to see the story with our mind and not only our eyes. The Greek philosopher Plato wrote that “noesis”, the Greek expression for insight, was the highest kind of knowing. With this description, he meant that the mind saw what was true. And we have a scene referring to this type of knowledge: As you can detect, knowledge is linked to sight. That’s why when a person employs the following idiom “I see”, she or he indicates that the person knows and understands. However, we need to see the butler’s behavior with our mind’s eyes and not only our eyes. With this new perspective, it becomes important to examine the valet’s actions beyond the pictures Byeonduck presented to the readers in order to have a real insight about Kim. What is his true personality in reality? He appears kind and gentle, therefore the readers judged him as such. However, this is not the truth and the topic of this essay will be to destroy the myth about Kim as a hero. And in order to achieve this goal, it is important to review all his actions and words from the start.

If we consider the formal aspects, we will notice that Kim is introduced in the same chapter than Jung In-Hun’s arrival at the mansion. That’s his first introduction. I doubt that this is a coincidence. As I have already described the scholar as a villain, this can be viewed a first evidence for this theory. Secondly, if we count the number of chapters (2, 6, 7, 10, 11, 17, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 27, 29, 30, 35, 37, 38, 40, 41, 44) where Jung In-Hun appears, you’ll notice that Kim has the exact same number: 20 (7, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 19, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 30, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 39, 44). One might argue that Kim has been developed to contrast to Jung In-Hun, yet this is not possible, as the valet often lies (f. ex. episode 11, 12, 29, 34, 35, 44, 67, 68), exactly like the teacher. Nevertheless, I am well aware that these exterior aspects might not be not convincing enough.

Let me elaborate why I believe that Kim isn’t only an antagonist in Painter Of The Night, but also a villain. But before bringing up all the points, I need to define the nature of an antagonist and a villain.

“In literature, an antagonist is a character, or a group of characters, which stands in opposition to the Protagonist, which is the main character. […] ” quoted from https://literarydevices.net/antagonist/

This definition points out that the antagonist hinders the protagonist to achieve his goal, hence he creates conflicts for the protagonist. He can be a villain, but not necessarily. He can be just a competitor and rival. And note that in my last analysis (“The slaps in the kaleidoscope”), I had described Kim as a rival to the painter. The latter was slowly taking away the power Kim had over the powerful noble. At the end of chapter 66, Yoon Seungho is submitting himself to the artist’s authority. But I could also use the confrontation Kim had with Yoon Seungho as illustration in chapter 68. The butler used his knowledge to literally destroy the lord’s confidence and power. He portrayed him as a bad and cruel person who made a false judgement and was even wayward in his youth. At no moment, he gave a real advice to the protagonist, contributing to his lord’s growth and improving his behavior. But one might argue that everything is linked to the valet’s position. He is just a domestic. Yet, he had disobeyed his master’s order showing a certain confidence. And his disregard for his master was already visible on different occasions, like in chapter 33 or chapter 56 . He brought the artist to the physician without his master’s permission. Back then, many like myself overlooked his infraction, because it seemed like it was for the artist’s sake. However, the readers should remember that the physician was called to the lord’s property in the past. So why bring the painter to the doctor’s office? And let’s remember that in the past Yoon Seungho visited the doctor’s office in order to get drugged. Back then, the main lead became a victim of drug. As you can observe, Kim’s actions should be judged with the mind’s eye and not with just with the heart or the eye. Besides, the butler’s attitude towards the main lead revealed a certain confidence to use knowledge and lies to manipulate Yoon Seungho. So maybe Kim represents a certain hindrance to the two protagonists, but to describe him as a villain, some readers will question this interpretation.

A villain is the bad guy, the one who comes up with diabolical plots to somehow cause harm or ruin. It is one of the archetype characters in many stories. The villain may truly believe that he/she is helping society, but causes harm in the process.” quoted from https://literaryterms.net/villain/  

On the surface, it looks like a villain is a bad person. Yet this is not correct, it is not complete. The definition portrays the villain mainly as a scheming person who believes that his actions are right, because he has a good justification. However, his words and actions have a negative impact on the protagonists. “Schemes and causing harm” stand in the center of this definition and not if the villain acts badly so obviously. In other words, the villain is not necessarily an evil or brutal person, as long as the person legitimates his actions. Furthermore, there are different types of villains:

  1. Traitor: This villain betrays the ones who trusted him or her.
  2. Patriarch/Matriarch: These warped villains see themselves as the head of the family or group.
  3. Tyrant: This villainous leader takes no guff from anyone – do as you’re told or pay the price.
  4. Devil: True evil at its worst, the devil villain has no good side.
  5. Schemer: This villain loves making diabolical plans and carrying them out.
  6. Lunatic: Just plain crazy, this villain may not have any real motivation but the crazy conspiracies he or she “sees.” quoted from https://literaryterms.net/villain/ (I didn’t list all the different kind of villains)

After reading these different descriptions, the readers recognize that Min resembles to the Schemer and Devil, while father Yoon looks more like a patriarch. I would like to remind that Min justifies his schemes with his urges for the painter and his desire for entertainment. Nevertheless, the first type is often overlooked, the traitor. From my point of view, Kim represents the first type, because he has already backstabbed his master on multiple occasions. I could mention Kim’s betrayal towards Yoon Seungho in chapter 65. Here, he heard and saw something, but decided to turn a blind eye and abandoned the young boy. He allowed the young master to get assaulted and chose not to intervene, because he dislikes the idea of trouble so much. His real desire is to lead a peaceful life. Arguing that he feared for his life can also be refuted. If the butler had intervened immediately, then father Yoon would have believed him. Father Yoon trusts the valet so much that he followed Kim who recommended him the physician. So he had the valet’s trust. However, it became a different story, if Yoon Seungho had revealed the truth and accused the butler for abandoning him. In my opinion, he didn’t want to get in the way of a noble hurting the main lead, therefore he became an accomplice. He had to hide his wrongdoings. And in order to ease his conscience, he justifies his passivity and inaction with the following motto: Since it doesn’t concern his life, then he doesn’t need to care. But one might refute my argumentation that Kim only made a mistake once. However, let’s not forget that there’s another main lead in this manhwa: Baek Na-Kyum. Kim betrayed him in chapter 11, by letting take the fall for the damaged painting. Like I had already exposed in a previous analysis, Kim lied to his master in chapter 11: In fact, Baek Na-Kyum had left the room for a stroll. And with his two lies in chapter 11, he allowed the painter to get hurt and punished unfairly. In other words, he caused harm not only to Yoon Seungho, but also to Baek Na-Kyum. What caught my attention is the absence of the eye in the first picture. First, one might think that this aspect is an indication that the servant is trying to hide his true thoughts. However, I would even add another dimension. The absence of the valet’s eyes displays his leitmotiv: turning a blind eye. But there’s more to it. The absence of his eyes mirrors his desire to ignore the consequences of his actions. Therefore he keeps running away (chapter 64) (chapter 67) in order to avoid any confrontation. Furthermore he avoids peoples’ gaze and questions (see the picture from chapter 67) (chapter 63). Note that in this scene (last image), before leaving, he never answers to the maids’ question corresponding to the missing ears in the following picture: He is also turning a deaf ear. That’s other Kim’s MO. He is deliberately closing his eyes and ears to reality and truth, so that he doesn’t need to feel guilty. With this attitude, he doesn’t want to feel burdened and responsible for his actions. And he prefers letting others take the blame. Yet, this doesn’t mean that he doesn’t use his senses like Jihwa, it is quite the opposite. He utilizes his senses in order to get knowledge, as he has already recognized that insight can help him to live a quiet life. That’s why he is described as perceptive by Yoon Seungho in chapter 23.

Then one might refute that he only hurt the protagonists once, he can’t be a villain. Besides, he never intended the main leads to get hurt, he just feared to get punished. However, this is just an illusion. In reality, if you pay attention to the butler’s actions, you can actually witness Kim’s true power which is based on manipulations and drugs. In my opinion, he is a puppet master hiding in the shadow and the pawns have no idea that they have been masterminded by a “kind” valet. Now, you are wondering how?

What caught my attention is the medication that Yoon Seungho has been fed since his teens. In chapter 57, even the doctor questioned the lord’s illness, yet he still gave him the medicine without a real diagnosis, because father Yoon would talk to him, until the latter gave in. Besides, Kim decided to continue feeding him after the abandonment, and it was never questioned by the doctor. The latter only heard through Kim that Yoon Seungho had started getting seriously sick. The readers should recall that the doctor only examined the lord twice, the second time it happened many years later. The doctor has never been able to define the illness the main lead was suffering. And note that the doctor pointed out that before the lord wasn’t known as hot-tempered. That’s why I believe that the drug is the cause for Yoon Seungho’s mood swings and impulsive behavior. Sure, there exist other causes, the different traumas the lord experienced. And from my perspective, the connection between the violence and the drug is visible, if you think carefully about the return of the lord’s violent and impulsive attitude from chapter 61 on. It coincides with his stay at the physician’s. For me, there’s no coincidence in this story. Since the story is repeating itself, the author revealed that after the visitation, Yoon Seungho as a teen started receiving the medication affecting his mood. For he went to the doctor’s in chapter 57, it means that the physician must have given him some medicine after the disappearance of the painter. And let’s not forget his words in chapter 55: The man recommended Kim to give him the tea. Now, due to the physician’s words, which Baek Na-Kyum clearly heard, Kim has a reason to feed him the drug again. He is just following the doctor’s prescription and note that Kim has the painter as a witness. This panel is relevant, as it exposes that the lord refused to take the tonic before. His reason was simple: he slept better. In my opinion, we have to envisage that Kim would use the doctor’s innocence to justify his action, if he was caught giving the drug. Furthermore, the master was at the doctor’s, hence the former would trust his recommendation and his tea. Hence I believe that the lord got drugged after that night explaining his relapse (violent temper). Since we know that this story is built as a kaleidoscope, it means that this medication was mentioned in season 1. It first appears in chapter 35, and the lord declined the “medicinal tea”, a reflection of chapter 55. But the readers have to envision that Yoon Seungho had already stopped drinking the potion even before chapter 35. Let’s not forget that the main lead was away for many days, hopping from one bedchamber to the next. Consequently, he couldn’t take the drug. And after Baek Na-Kyum became the lord’s lover, the latter had no reason to drink the medicinal tea. First, thanks to the low-born, the noble had been able to get some sleep. Observe how refreshed he looks the next morning after spending a night with the painter. Later he was busy having sex with Baek Na-Kyum and could sleep better, like Kim described it in chapter 55. One might argue that Kim is doing for the lord’s sake, but then the manhwaphiles should question truly his intentions, as he gave an aphrodisiac to the painter against his will in chapter 36. The purpose for his action was simple: he intended to use the artist as the new sex toy for the master, so that Yoon Seungho would be busy with sex and forget the outside world. And the artist didn’t want to take it either. There’s no real legitimation to drug someone, the goal doesn’t justify the means. Besides, giving the wrong medication to someone who is not sick can never be good. It can definitely make someone sick, and the manhwaworms should recognize that the doctor could never truly diagnose the lord’s illness. He created the medicine based on the father’s desires and suggestions. Yet, at no moment, Kim stopped the treatment, although he knows that father Yoon was a cruel man, like he revealed in chapter 68. Therefore I judge Kim as a real dangerous person, because he drugs people and uses people’s innocence. I doubt that the physician is aware that he has been used by father Yoon and later by Kim. The clue for his innocence is palpable because of his testimony to the painter. He is not hiding anything, he reveals the past to the artist, since he knows the relationship between the two protagonists. However, like I have already explained it, the doctor’s revelations will help to uncover the truth. One might still argue that Kim is just doing what father Yoon told him. He is still loyal to the eldest master. So he is not responsible for the drugs. I could just argue that father Yoon never gave him the permission to drug the painter, Kim made the decision on his own and no one asked him to do so. Besides, he works as Yoon Seungho’s butler and not father Yoon’s, therefore we can definitely describe him as a traitor, since he drugs the main lead and we have to imagine that Yoon Seungho must have refused it in the past as well. So once the father abandoned his son, Kim could have stopped with the medication.

And let’s turn our attention to my second point: the butler’s manipulations, symbolizing that Kim is indeed a villain. In order to validate my theory, it is necessary to examine all the butler’s words and actions. Like I had already mentioned in a previous chapter, Kim lied in chapter 11 with a certain intention. My first reaction was to say that he didn’t want to take the blame for the second lead’s misdeed. However, I believe that there’s more to it. Observe the way he lies. He notices the lord’s good mood, and he suggests the noble to visit the painter in his study by saying that the painter spent the whole day. With his words, he implies that the painter has been dedicated towards Yoon Seungho and he must be tired, the first version of the following panel from chapter 41. That way, the noble would discover the ruined painting. He anticipated that the noble would like to go to the painter with his suggestion, since he knows that the lord is a goodhearted man in reality. He orchestrated the whole situation, he knew that the lord would have a mood swing and his rage would target the painter. That’s why he hid behind the door , so that he wouldn’t be confronted with the consequences of his lie and manipulations. Like I demonstrated it before, there’s no doubt that Kim had seen Jihwa’s arrival and had chosen to close his eyes. From my point of view, the butler had already judged the painter as a source of trouble and desired to get rid of him. Why?

My theory is the following: Kim is actually working as a spy. Since he has only been loyal to himself, I suspect that Kim has been working behind Yoon Seungho’s back for several people. His motivation was never money or power, rather leading a tranquil life without any trouble and struggle. However, this mentality led him to the dark side. I believe that the starting point was the protagonist’s abuse in the storage room. After his silence and passivity, he was bound by secrecy. It is definitely possible that he has been blackmailed too, the older version Deok-Jae’s thread. In my opinion, it is lord Song, but this is now only a supposition. First, I discovered that Kim was able to read and as such write. If I complete Kim’s sentence, we have this: Lord Song is not one to write to my master. Then to whom is lord Song supposed to write? I doubt that Kim is aware of lord Song’s mail contacts, since the valet lives in that mansion the whole time. The logical deduction is to say that the valet has been in touch with lord Song. Besides, another evidence for Kim’s hidden abilities is the painter. Remember how I described the artist as the positive reflection of Kim. Since Baek Na-Kyum was supposed to be literate and the lord discovered that it was not true, Kim as the low-born’s negative reflection is supposed to be illiterate, while in reality he can read and write. Moreover, if you pay attention to Kim’s reaction in chapter 56, when he hears that lord Song desires to meet the main lead at the tavern, Kim gets scared. Back then, many imagined that the butler’s fear was related to Yoon Seungho’s past and he felt concerned for the master. Yet, he got scared twice. The second time, the master was not present and Kim was definitely frightened. Finally, note how he tries to suggest to his master to postpone the meeting due to his illness. It sounds reasonable and legitimate, yet if you think that Kim is a spy, he has a motive to make sure that both don’t encounter. That’s why he abandoned Baek Na-Kyum at the physician’s and rushed to the lord’s side. He was scared that Yoon Seungho would discover the truth. Once he saw Jihwa there, he felt relieved and faked concern. That’s why he said this to the doctor: He definitely expressed relief here and notice, he hides his eyes again, a sign that he is hiding his true thoughts, but also avoiding to face the consequences of all his lies and manipulations. Besides, I couldn’t help myself thinking about Yoon Seungho’s comment in chapter 18: The amateur spy got discovered, because he showed true concern for Jihwa. So what if we had a professional spy, the reflection of the amateur spy? As such he is a puppet master who can deceive people due to his acting skills. Now, you can comprehend why for me, Kim is a villain, a traitor. He is always perceived as kind, gentle and genuine, yet the truth is different. His thoughts exposed his selfishness and dishonesty towards the painter and the master.

And now, it is time to return our attention to the reasons for Kim’s manipulation in chapter 11. Let’s not forget the circumstances that led to Jihwa’s revenge. In chapter 8, Yoon Seungho had humiliated a noble and even grabbed him by the topknot creating a scandal, something Kim abhors the most. And this was caused by the low-born’s presence. And we have to imagine that Kim must have been staying in the background and saw the scene, a repetition from chapter 33. So with such a humiliation, Kim could only object to the lord’s attitude and consider the painter as the source of trouble and danger. However, if my theory about Kim as a spy is correct, we shouldn’t forget that Jung In-Hun had just arrived at the mansion, and the scholar must have told Kim about the reasons for his stay here: the lord desires to sponsor him and give him a high position. Since Jung In-Hun is arrogant and likes admiration, I doubt that he hid it from the butler. So Kim has a bigger cause to get rid of the painter. If Yoon Seungho has connections to the government, he can become dangerous. Since the latter has an affection to the teacher, which Kim witnessed, he must have recognized that his sponsorship is related Baek Na-Kyum. So when he viewed Jihwa’s arrival in chapter 10, he knew what would happen, and saw it as an opportunity to get rid of the painter and indirectly the teacher. That’s why he tricked the main lead to pay a visit to the artist, by portraying the low-born as a hardworking painter. Besides, we also have to envision that he knew that Jihwa had hired one of the servants from his staff. Since his policy is to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear in the sake of his “peace”, he had no reason to intervene. At the same time, since he knew that the teacher was the artist’s alibi, the other possible outcome was that Jung In-Hun intervenes so that a quarrel between the two nobles begins leading to the end of the sponsorship. However, the artist chose to remain silent and the scholar didn’t show any interest for Baek Na-Kyum. Anyway, Kim could only win with such an action: either Jung In-Hun chose to cut ties with the main lead for mistreating the commoner or Baek Na-Kyum decides to leave the mansion after such a punishment. That’s why Kim allowed the amateur spy to leave the mansion and announced that the lord had chosen the straw mat beating as punishment.