Painter Of The Night: The puzzle with the paper 📜 📨 (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/ 

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Announcement: The essay “The secret behind curry, apple and butter” has been updated.

Here, I would like to thank my friend Luzyla for her latest observations which made me realize the existence of a new connection!! Before elaborating my new discoveries, I would like to repeat the following principles on which the story was developed:

  1. There is always a reflection within the same chapter.
  2. The next episode is mirroring the previous one, naturally with slight changes.
  3. Each season is reflected in the previous and the future one.
  4. The author is working on positive and negative reflections.
  5. Thus the story is going in circle.
  6. Thus the lord’s destiny is reflected in the painter’s.

That’s the method I am using to unveil the mystery behind Yoon Seungho’s past and as such behind the painter’s.

1. Baek Na-Kyum’s apology

Everything started with this panel. (Chapter 5) Baek Na-Kyum was apologizing for his past behavior. He had insulted the main lead because of the poem. And his words sounded really similar to the butler’s in the library, for they both employed the same expressions: “That day” and “I spoke out of”. (Chapter 77) Striking is that the painter employed the expression “hand”, while the valet talked about “turn”. Why did they do that? It is because when Kim was caught committing a crime, he turned his head! (chapter 68) Thus in the library, the butler excused himself in front of the lord by using the following expression: “spoke out of turn”!! On the other hand, the painter had used his hand, (chapter 4), therefore he described his wrongdoing with the following expression “out of hand”. In my eyes, his words indicate the interference of the butler. Furthermore, the two men had a drop of sweat, a sign that they were not truly honest. (chapter 77) Both were apologizing, as they had wronged the noble. As you can imagine, the similarity in the excuse is no coincidence. The proof that both incidents are reflections is that they have another point in common. The wrongdoings of the low-borns had taken place in front of a gate. The butler had disobeyed his master (chapter 68), and the painter had assaulted the lord by trying to retrieve the poetry. (Chapter 4) Because both characters had violated social norms, showing disrespect towards a noble, (chapter 04) the consequence was that two people were pushed down, the black guard and Baek Na-Kyum. (Chapter 4) In other words, since Yoon Seungho had punished the butler due to the incidents in episode 67/68, I deduce that episodes 67/68 were reflections of episode 4/5 as well!! This corresponds to the rule 2 and 3.

1. 1. Yoon Seungho, the commoners and the Lees

But this doesn’t end here. When the lord caught Kim’s wrongdoing, he was returning from the Lees’ mansion (chapter 68). Since this is the positive reflection, I am deducing that in chapter 4, Yoon Seungho was actually returning to the domain of the Lees, as it should mirror the opposite. (chapter 4) Let’s not forget that just before the great entrance of Black Heart and the protagonist in chapter 67, this was what the author showed us: (chapter 67) And now compare the building to this one from chapter 1: (chapter 1) Under this light, my theory that Yoon Seungho was living with the Lees in the beginning of the story gets reinforced and even validated. In season 1, Yoon Seungho had sex with his friend in the pavilion so that the father and the staff could see the truth: the young master Jihwa was a sodomite. But since we saw Yoon Seungho in that building in episode 1, we jumped to the wrong conclusion that this was his house. But actually, from chapter 12 on, the author was showing us that we had been deceived. This was the lord’s house, and note that there is no building in the big courtyard contrary to the domain from chapter 67 and 1. (Chapter 12) (For more read the essay “Lee Jihwa’s special relationship with Yoon Seungho”) Then in season 2, the main lead forced the elder Lee to hear what he had been denying all this time (Chapter 67), while in chapter 3, he could only witness it from the patio. On the other hand, Yoon Seungho had been proactive during their sexual encounter, hence the father could only blame the main lead for his son’s debauchery. The intimacy in the pavilion was in verity hiding Yoon Seungho’s huge traumas. But due to Lee Jihwa’s confession in the inn, the red-haired master’s reputation got ruined in town and this must have definitely reached the father’s ears. Striking is that when Yoon Seungho confronted Lee Jihwa with his crime (abduction of a person from his household), the red-haired master ran away and hid behind the folding shield. Thus he never apologized to his friend. And it was the same with the elder Lee. The latter knew about his son’s wrongdoing, for he accused the intruder immediately. (Chapter 67) As you can see, the absence of the excuse from the uke and his father outlines that chapter 67 is a reflection of episode 5 and 77. I detect a pattern, chapter 5 contains a superficial apology, chapter 67 no apology and chapter 77 a fake excuse again. Furthermore the manhwalovers can recognize that in the same episode (episode 5), the antagonist Jihwa had indeed wounded the painter with his insult too, a reflection of episode 4. (Chapter 5) This confirms that chapter 5 is connected not only to episode 77, but also to chapter 67/68. We have the same elements: an incident linked to a door (chapter 67), insults towards the main leads, a wrongdoing, the allusion to love (chapter 67), a punishment, but also the absence or presence of an apology. But all of these episodes have other similarities: hypocrisy and arrogance. The Lees were looking down on Baek Na-Kyum and Yoon Seungho (chapter 5-67), while in episode 77, it was the butler who yelled and criticized the noble. (chapter 77) By detecting a reflection between these chapters, I had a new revelation.

1. 2. The lord and the papers

In addition, if the manhwaphiles compare the scene with the painter’s excuse (chapter 5) to the scene with the butler’s (chapter 77), they can detect the fourth parallel: Yoon Seungho’s correspondence. 😮 How is it possible, as in episode 5, the noble never wrote a letter? In fact, he gave the poem to the black guard for the investigation. On the other hand, it looked, as though Yoon Seungho had written a letter (chapter 5), while it was not the case. As you can see, anyone seeing the black guard leaving the owner’s study could have had the impression that the lord had written a letter. This means that this mistake must have taken place later again due to the rule 2! The manhwalovers could discover the deception in chapter 37/38!! (chapter 38) That’s how Jung In-Hun got misled. (chapter 38) Yoon Seung-Won had never received a letter, but the ruined painting. The readers only discovered the trick in the final episode, when the father was looking at the picture. And this connection between a letter and a painting was reflected in season 2. While Min stole the painter’s last creation (chapter 56), Jihwa sent a forged letter (chapter 56). Striking is that the butler was the one who received the paper before delivering it to his sick master. These two scenes (38-56) indicate that the valet is related to the correspondence. Moreover, he was seen delivering the message to Yoon Seungho in the courtyard. (chapter 35)

All this proves that in chapter 5, the butler had seen the black guard departing from the study with the paper in the hand, and he had jumped to the wrong conclusion that his master had written a letter. Therefore right after this conversation, the lord’s table vanished. (chapter 5) It was, as if he was not allowed to write any letter. So where did the table go? To the study!! What caught my attention is that after the first painting (chapter 2), the table had been removed from the study, just like the papers. (chapter 4) This was no coincidence. It had been sent to the lord’s bedroom, but after the lord had tasked the black guard, it was no longer there. This is the indication that someone was interfering with Yoon Seungho’s habit to take a brush. And this can only be Kim. As you can see, the appearance and the vanishing of the small table is the element which was reflected in chapter 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. And now, look at the scene where Lee Jihwa met Min. (chapter 67) The table had also disappeared. And when did it happen? (chapter 21) The noble had ransacked his own room with his sword. And what did we see in that episode? A paper folded in a book. (chapter 21) In other words, the First Wedding night is also a reflection from these chapters (4/5, 67/68, 77), for it contains the same elements: (chapter 20) an incident with a door, someone is pushed down, a wrongdoing committed against Yoon Seungho (theft), an apology (episode 19) and the importance of the table. According to me, the valet had put the expensive wine on the painter’s table on purpose. To conclude, I see a connection between episode 4/5, 19/20/21, 67/68 and 77.

And now. you are wondering if I am not drifting away from my initial statement, the painter’s apology. However, I would like to remind the readers that in order to write a letter, a person usually needs to have a table in order to write properly. So imagine the butler’s reaction, when he hears from Yoon Seungho this: (chapter 77) He can not trust his words, especially since he views the nobles as violent liars. Why? It is because there was this huge table. This is no coincidence that right after the valet betrayed the main lead and wrote a message to the patriarch. That’s how I had another revelation. The butler is symbolized by the table! Thus he was often seen with this small table (chapter 11) (chapter 17) To conclude, when the butler saw the black guard leaving the mansion, he believed that his master had sent words to someone! That’s the reason why he removed the table and returned it to the painter’s study.

(chapter 5) However, this was just the poem!! This confusion between a letter and a poem should be reflected in season 3 according to rule 3. That’s how I came to the conclusion that when the painter returned to the annex and took the poem, he was actually taking a letter (chapter 97) written by Yoon Seungho, but he envisioned that this was the Spring poem! (chapter 97) We had the same situation. Black Heart had stolen the Spring poem, and the noonas had deceived the protagonists by faking admiration in front of an empty paper. (chapter 93) Since the paper in episode 93 was empty, I could only come to the deduction that this paper contained words!! (chapter 97) Another evidence for this theory is the color of the paper, for the second doesn’t have a shade of pink. Then I suddenly recalled that the artist had received two calligraphies, the one from his beloved and the other from the old bearded man. (chapter 92) The latter’s work was a copy of Yoon Seungho’s poetry, the repetition from chapter 4. Hence you comprehend why I deduce that the paper in the annex was different from the Spring poem. So during that night, Yoon Seungho left a note to his lover, and that’s how the butler discovered that the artist could not read Chinese, for he saw his master writing in hangeul. But there exists another evidence for this interpretation. Baek Na-Kyum had wished this: (chapter 97) The goddess was actually fulfilling his wish, when she reminded him of the Spring poem.

And that’s how I realized why Kim had suggested to his master that two servants should remain by Baek Na-Kyum’s side and bring him back to the mansion. The reason is simple. The two domestics were to divert the artist’s attention, that way the painter wouldn’t read the letter. If the domestics were present, they could give some information to the painter without revealing too much. (chapter 97) If the lord had mentioned in the letter that they had found the corpse of Deok-Jae, the painter would have believed him. However, as you can envision it, the butler and Min were determined to generate a misunderstanding, to create the illusion that the scholar had died. Consequently, the servants deceived the main lead by omitting the existence of the paper. They had not delivered the message properly.

In other words, the letter is connected to a painting and a poem, yet each time, the paper was stolen or misused. Striking is that none of the main characters noticed the switch or the vanishing. We could say that this was Yoon Seungho’s karma for stealing the painter’s belonging. (chapter 4) His own poetry got stolen. But let’s return our attention to episode 5. Since the lord had given the poem to the black guard, this signifies that the lord no longer had the sijo. Therefore he had to write the poem again in order to mask the disappearance. In my opinion, he must have copied the original poetry for the artist in order to prove that he had not been lying. Hence the paper looked different. And this brings me back to the painter’s apology in the patio. (chapter 5) Why did the painter apologize to Yoon Seungho in the end? How did he come up with such an idea? It is because this had been suggested to the artist by Kim. This explicates why he was speaking like the butler. The latter had actually made a huge error, when he advised the artist. Why? It is because he was mixing cause and consequence. In the valet’s mind, the lord had kept the message, for the painter had offended him. So if he were to confess his wrongdoing, the lord would return the poem, and after that, it was just a matter of time, until the painter would desert the propriety. However, the lord had stated this: (chapter 04) That’s the reason why he had taken it in the first place.

Since Kim had been the one suggesting to the painter to beg for forgiveness with the hope that he would get back his poetry, it is normal that Kim was present, when the poetry was returned. (chapter 7) But where is the sijo now?

In my eyes, Kim had witnessed how the paper had left the property in the past, and he had not intervened. Why? It is because of the black guard. (chapter 65) Moreover, I believe that in chapter 65, he had collaborated with the noona. He had shown her the painting of Baek Na-Kyum, while in the study there was a blank paper. As you can see, in season 2, we had again this connection between a painting and blank paper. But let’s return our attention to chapter 5. The black guard was acting on the order of someone else, Yoon Seungho was not the one hiring him. The butler hates ruckus, his MO is to lie low and act in the shadow. If he had retrieved the paper, the man could report it to the master of the black guard. On the other hand, he could have asked the warden about his master’s request. He just needed to say that he desired to assist him, similar to this situation. (chapter 82) Thus I conclude that when the lord returned the paper to Baek Na-Kyum (chapter 7), Kim must have realized his error. He had mistaken the poem for a letter!! This explains why he repeated the trick with the younger master Seung-Won. But unfortunately for him, he was caught by the teacher who asked the painter about the letter the next morning. (chapter 38) Baek Na-Kyum could have realized that the butler had acted behind his master’s back. The problem is that during that evening, the lord had indeed written a letter to his brother (chapter 36), but the moment the latter interrupted the couple (chapter 37), Yoon Seungho chose to hide it. But why is it important? It is because if the painter had mentioned the paper given to the younger master to Yoon Seungho, the latter could have noticed the valet’s meddling and wrongdoing. On the surface, it looked like Kim had written himself a letter to the younger master. In other words, in episode 37/38, the butler gave the impression that he was a spy, for he was acting without his master’s permission. He had even left the propriety, as he was standing outside in front of the gate. Don’t forget that during the meeting, the brother had mentioned that he had sent him many letters (chapter 37), and there is no ambiguity that Kim had intervened. Here, the lord had said nothing, for he imagined that Kim had done it to protect him from his family.

According to my theory, Yoon Seungho was living with the Lees, and as such Baek Na-Kyum had to trespass the propriety in order to retrieve his tools and vanish!! (Chapter 4) But on his way out, he met Yoon Seungho who had just missed the painter’s departure. But there, he discovered that the main lead had stolen his poetry. (Chapter 04) Therefore he was forced to return to the mansion. At the same time, Yoon Seungho was encouraged to come back to the propriety too. He had to keep an eye on the painter. He couldn’t be so sure that the poem was strong enough to keep Baek Na-Kyum by his side. Therefore it is not surprising that in episode 5, Yoon Seungho was seen sitting in front of the window smoking. (chapter 5) He was looking at the gate and as such making sure that the artist’s departure would be noticed. By sending the low-born to the Lees’ mansion, Kim was encouraging the painter to commit a crime: trespassing! But the artist was fortunate, for he was not caught by the lord of the mansion, who preferred hiding due to the ruckus caused by his own son. 😉 As for Yoon Seungho, he came back to the mansion and saw the empty study. Kim just needed to say that the low-born had left to the Lees’ mansion. This is important, because this indicates that in chapter 4, the couple missed each other first! And this situation was repeated in season 3, precisely in chapter 98, when the lord returned from the bureau of investigation (chapter 98)! The lord arrived just after the painter’s departure. And who was with the main lead? Kim. As you can see, the lord’s luck seems not to be on his side, for Baek Na-Kyum had just left the propriety. Once again… the lord was standing in front of the gate!! As for season 2, this time, it was Kim’s fate to miss his master. (chapter 56) The reason for this punishment is simple. He had sent away the artist to the study just before Yoon Seungho regained consciousness. The latter didn’t see that the artist had taken care of him during that night. Thus the butler’s karma was not to notice his master’s departure which stands in opposition to chapter 4 and 98. And note that all these chapters have the paper as common denominator. So imagine the butler’s surprise in episode 4, when he witnessed the artist’s return to the mansion followed by his master. He had sent away Baek Na-Kyum with the hope that the artist would desert the town for good, but no…

2. Kim’s hidden action

Kim must have been intrigued. Why did Baek Na-Kyum come back? He had witnessed the execution of a servant, then he had been abducted before getting imprisoned in the storage room. Finally, he had been threatened and forced to paint an erotic picture. Hence Kim felt the urge to discover the reasons for the painter’s behavior. In other words, he must have interrogated him, the older version of this scene: (chapter 23) The first similarity is the allusion to his bag. The butler was actually thinking that during the hunt, the painter would decide to run away. That’s the reason why he asked about his belonging, for in the past, he only wished to vanish after retrieving his tools. Naturally, the artist saw no harm in the butler’s question and answered truthfully. He must have narrated the argument in the courtyard about the poem. Yoon Seungho had kept the sijo, consequently the painter had used his hand to take it back and had by mistake removed the lord’s hat. Thus Kim must have told him that he just needed to apologize. But one might say that this is just a story imagined by me. The manhwaphiles never saw such a scene. But don’t forget the existence of the reflections. I have definitely an evidence for this theory. Since the butler had manipulated the painter in chapter 4 in order to get rid of this uninvited guest, his karma was to receive a new guest!! (chapter 7) This is not what the valet truly desired at all. He wanted to live in peace. But now, he had three new people he had to serve: Jung In-Hun, the painter and his own master Yoon Seungho who had lived for quite some time in the Lees’ mansion. He had to work!! And note that in this episode 7, we have the following elements:

  • The arrival of a guest, exactly like in episode 4-5; 67/68 and 77.
  • a paper
  • the library
  • a reference to “love”
  • the first appearance of Kim
  • The existence of a deal which is also present in chapter 4 and 77
  • The connection between the letter and a poem (chapter 5-77)

This truly shows that during that night (chapter 77), the valet chose to write a letter in order to denunciate the protagonist. As you already know, attack is the best defense. Exactly like in the courtyard, he badmouthed a noble, this time he must have compared Yoon Seungho to the younger brother Yoon Seung-Won. The latter would succeed with the civil service examination and bring glory to the Yoons, whereas the main lead would only live like an idle sodomite.

Through this contrast, another detail caught my attention. (chapter 7) How did Yoon Seungho know that the learned sir had no connection and was poor? Who had told him that? One might think that this can only be the butler. However, Yoon Seungho had tasked the black guard to investigate and not Kim. Yet, there is no ambiguity that the latter definitely played a role in this investigation. Why? It is because of the expressions the main lead was using: “hardly knows”, “determination”, “labor in vain” which resembles to the valet’s vocabulary, though he embodies the opposite: ignorance, hesitation and laziness. The aristocrat’s description about the teacher is actually questioning the main lead’s actions. If Jung In-Hun was portrayed as poor and powerless, why would he sponsor such a scholar? He would gain nothing. Moreover, with such a portrait, the speaker is implying that only through connections you can achieve greatness. These words are actually exposing the meaningless of the civil service examination. In other words, this description was already insinuating the existence of sodomy, sex in exchange of favors. And this negative depiction of the civil service examination was exposed once again in the gibang. (chapter 93) It was a futile dream. When I had analyzed episode 93, I had explained that the speech from the main lead was influenced by the butler. As you can see, the lord’s narration (chapter 7) was mirroring the valet’s mentality and meddling. He had tried to stop his master from visiting the learned sir the day before. However, I don’t think that Kim is only responsible for this negative characterization of Jung In-Hun in episode 7! Why? First, we never saw the return of the black guard, but when the main lead visited the learned sir’s mansion, he was followed by another one! (chapter 6) There was a switch. That’s how I had this revelation. Heena is the missing link between the learned sir and the protagonist. And observe that in episode 93, we have the same elements again:

An empty paper which is confused with the poem

The incident with the door: (chapter 93) This time, Heena is the one standing behind closed doors, while it was Yoon Seungho in chapter 77

The reference to the library:

The allusion to Kim

The presence of love and affection:

The lord got badmouthed

The fake apology: (chapter 93) In chapter 99, the noonas still lied to him.

An invitation (chapter 93), which was also present in chapter 4/5, 7 and 67/68 and finally 77 ! Since episode 93 is a reflection of episode 7, I could only come to the conclusion that Heena was the one standing behind the black guard! Besides, I had already discovered that Heena was associated to the table as well (see chapter 94 and 68). She represents the link between the butler and Jung In-Hun. She had already collaborated with the valet in episode 65. So from my point of view, she must have received the scholar’s poem with Yoon Seungho’s request. But what could she do with it? Keep it? No… her interference would have been noticed. Hence I believe that the kisaeng was not acting on her own. She was following the orders from the mysterious “lord Song”. At the same time, I think that she is also connected to the Lees. This would explicate why the black guards would change between episode 1, 5 and 6. Finally, according to me, the learned sir had connections to elder Lee, for he had seen the baby Na-Kyum at the gate. (chapter 1) [For more read the essay “Baek Na-Kyum’s origins”] There is no ambiguity that these words (chapter 7) were not reflecting the verity.

In other words, she had been working for two people, just like the butler was turning Yoon Chang-HYeon against the son and the reverse. Both stands for disloyalty. Therefore it is no coincidence that the kisaeng was seen with different black guards in chapter 64. On the other hand, the readers should keep in their mind that the black guard can be seen as a double-edged sword. They can serve as protectors, but also as “spies and as captors”. They could report Heena’s actions to the nobleman who had hired the black guards. Finally, the manhwaphiles will certainly recall the butler’s statement: (chapter 55) Who was lord Song’s contact person then? In the past, I used to think that he was the one receiving the letters. But now, I have a different opinion. I believe, it is Heena! Why? It is because Kim couldn’t identify lord Song’s writing. According to me, Yoon Seungho was sent to the gibang in order to entertain the mysterious “lord Song”. Thereby I am assuming that the kisaeng would receive a word from lord Song and have the main lead fetched from the mansion by the black guards. Heena and Yoon Chang-Hyeon are the only ones seen with black guards, I am excluding the main lead, as he was always more or less their prisoner. As you can see, there is a connection between the noona and the Yoons.

3. Heena and the letters

First, I would like to point out that the kisaeng mentioned letters twice in season 2. (chapter 68)(chapter 69) and in season 3, the noona sent messages to her brother herself. In two different chapters (chapter 91), she is related to papers. (chapter 97) Logically, the noona in connection with the letter should be present in season 1. Secondly, when the woman appeared for the first time (chapter 64), she was accompanied with 2 guards, which is quite similar to the lord’s situation in chapter 1. That’s the reason why I believe that she didn’t keep the learned sir’s poem. Her betrayal could have been noticed and this was the first time that Yoon Seungho was making such a request.

So where is the teacher’s sijo? It was received by the mysterious “lord Song”. That’s how he discovered that his ex-lover was showing an interest in the learned sir. This is important, because the poem will serve as the evidence to identify the murderer behind Jung In-Hun’s death. On the other hand, one might refute this idea, for the teacher was seen in his bedroom with the paper. (chapter 21) But if you look more closely at the paper, you will realize that it resembles a lot more to this one due to the marble effect. (chapter 7) Nevertheless, the paper looks damaged in the previous panel. But this could be the result of anger, like this. (chapter 56) This would follow rule 3. Then according to rule 2 of the kaleidoscope, elements from one episode will be constantly mirrored in the next chapters. And what did we have in episode 19? A larceny… the bottle of wine vanished. Then in episode 20, the lord stole the scholar’s identity, while he stole the painter’s virginity. Hence the lord apologized to the painter for his wrongdoings. (chapter 21) And above I had already demonstrated the connection between the First Wedding Night and chapter 5 and 77! Here the lord was imitating the pedophile’s behavior, hence you comprehend why I think that lord Song was the recipient of the poem. I would like my readers to keep in their mind that the learned sir’s sijo was referring to a painful departure, the loss of a loved one and despair! The beholder could have the impression that the author was suicidal due to the mention of the well and the torment of the mind. Thus I am now assuming that the “mysterious lord Song” will consider the sijo as a farewell, the lord chose to commit suicide and his death was related to Jung In-Hun’s curtains. Why? It is because Heena wrote letters to her brother where she accused the main lead of killing the learned sir. Moreover, Yoon Seung-Won had definitely mistaken the painter for the learned sir. (chapter 37) His position revealed that the main lead trusted the artist. It was, as if he was treating him like his wife. (chapter 97) And from my point of view, these messages were never burned. That way, Kim can put the whole blame on the kisaeng and her brother!! The butler can even reveal how Yoon Chang-Hyeon had harassed the son and tried to frame him for the death of his messenger.

But since “lord Song” was behind the scholar’s murder, he can only retaliate against Lee Jihwa and Min’s friends. Why? Because he will deny his responsibility in the crime, though he was the one who ordered it! Exactly like in the past. He had never assumed any responsibility, he always let others take the accountability. He needs to find a culprit in order to vent his fury. If they had not brought up the learned sir’s assassination, then Yoon Seungho “could have lived” in peace. To conclude, when the lord gave the paper to the black guard, the pedophile had the impression that the main character was rekindling with him, for he was asking for his help. He was far away from him. In his eyes, he had contacted him, “lord Song” alias the king!! And now, it becomes understandable why lord Song sent hanboks and asked Min to organize parties for Yoon Seungho!! It is because the pedophile believed that the main lead was no longer pushing him away or had accepted him. This is not surprising that little by little, the main lead’s hanboks became more and more beautiful. Don’t forget the following rule, the painter’s situation will be mirrored in the lord’s. Thus in chapter 34, Yoon Seungho returned with a hanbok covered with cranes (chapter 34), and shortly after the painter was sent to the tailor. But during that night, the pedophile and Yoon Seungho had missed each other due to Baek Na-Kyum. He was not dead. So when the painter received new clothes, it was the same for Yoon Seungho. Yet, the pedophile was gravely mistaken. Why? The sijo had been stolen, and as such it was never addressed to the pedophile. Furthermore, it is because the lord was suffering from memory loss. Moreover, I believe that the main lead is not aware of the true identity of his sexual abuser. In his mind, it is just lord Song. But this doesn’t end here.

According to me, the main lead wrote a letter to his lover in the gibang. This signifies that someone else must have done the same due to rule 1 and 2. The reference of the Spring poem in chapter 97 indicates the presence of a letter in the previous episode or the next! From my point of view, Min must have asked the kisaeng to contact “lord Song”!! And don’t forget that in season 2, we had a forged letter. (chapter 57) And who was behind this? Black Heart’s friend. But then it came to my mind that Black Heart had stolen the Spring poem… so he could have sent the paper to lord Song and the latter would have mistaken it as a letter from Yoon Seungho, the latter was reaching out to him. He was wishing him luck!! So imagine that when the man arrives in Jemulpo, he imagines that the main lead is waiting for him only to discover that Yoon Seungho vanished. He wished to die because of the loss of a loved one. And that’s how he will recall the poetry of the learned sir… the reflection of this night!! (chapter 94) In episode 4, the lord had laughed about the sijo, but it was no longer the case in the kisaeng house. In my eyes, the pedophile will go through the same experience. Yes, the effect of the kaleidoscope. He will perceive the learned sir’s poetry under a different perspective. Only in that moment, he will realize the suicidal tone in the sijo. He will question how Yoon Seungho could become so desperate and suicidal so suddenly. And now, you comprehend why Heena was trembling in front of her brother, and why she had planned to leave the gibang that night!! She was aware of the arrival of “lord Song”. She knows how cruel and ruthless he can be.

And Lee Jihwa’s words will become a reality. (chapter 101) Blood will flow… The proof for this expectation is that chapter 67, 77, 82 and 93 are all referring to punishment. Kim had been beaten in episode 77, while the kisaeng was imprisoned in the storage room. Moreover, we have the use of the sword in episode 21 and 67… and during these nights, the protagonists had made love to each other.

4. Father Lee’s message

Since the Lees are connected to paper in the form of the paintings and the letter, (chapter 5, 10, 15, 17, 56), I had suddenly this question! Why didn’t Lee send a word to Yoon Chang-Hyeon? Why did he have to visit him during the night? (chapter 82) (chapter 82) It is because he didn’t want to leave any evidence of his intervention. No one should notice that he had paid a visit to the patriarch either. His visit should remain a secret. He was actually afraid of getting detected. The reason is simple. He was fearing the person standing behind Yoon Seungho, lord Song. He had two reasons for this. First, he could see that Yoon Seungho was no longer treated like an animal or male kisaeng. (chapter 67) He was even better dressed than his own son. The hanbok was exposing the support from the “pedophile”. Secondly, the main lead had threatened him. (chapter 67) Here, the lord had just insinuated that if something like that happened again, he would go to the authorities. However, since this threat was rather ambiguous, the patriarch Lee could only interpret it that way. The main lead would report the incident to the “mysterious lord Song”, alias the king. And father Lee knew that he could get into trouble. Furthermore, since these elders are all hypocrites and liars, there is no doubt that father Lee feared that the protagonist wouldn’t keep his words. That’s the reason why he approached the father. He hoped that Yoon Chang-Hyeon would intervene and impose his will onto his son. He would tame the main character. In other words, episode 82 is a reflection of chapter 4/5, 19/20/21, 67/68 and 77. The first common denominator is the allusion to letters. The messenger’s words revealed that Kim had contacted the elder Yoon, for he already knew his name, though the latter had never met the domestic. Secondly, the “letters” were delivered orally: (chapter 82), and even in person: Father Lee and the emissary. Third, the elder Lee badmouthed Yoon Seungho by mentioning the incident from chapter 67, and refused the invitation of his host (chapter 82). Finally, he called Baek Na-Kyum a peasant exactly like the main lead in front of the gate: (chapter 82). But more important, the old bearded man expressed this fear: the loss of his family home! (chapter 82) And remember that I had detected the presence of the Lees’ mansion in episode 4 and it was also present in chapter 21 and 67! And what had the butler done during these chapters? He had tried to chase away the painter and as such Yoon Seungho. The latter was not supposed to live in the Yoons’ domain. And this will be the Lees’ karma to be driven out of their own house!

5. Conclusions

And now, you comprehend why the sijo from season 1 has not appeared yet. The couple will be able to identify the culprits with the “letters”, the poems. Remember the kisaeng’s words: (chapter 97) The absence of the messages was the evidence of the main lead’s wrongdoing. However, the moment the letters resurface, they will expose the noona’s lies. It doesn’t matter, if she had been deceived. She chose to trust the butler, without verifying the facts. To conclude, the poems will serve as proof for the crimes and I would even go so far to say that the papers, mistaken for letters, are the tools to expose the truth. Yoon Seungho had never contacted lord Song, for he hates him to the core. He is connected to his suffering and martyrdom, therefore he can only view the man as the bird of misfortune, while the latter had the impression that he was now getting closer to the main lead. Consequently, he considered him as his crane! But this man is exactly like Min, totally dishonest and irresponsible. I couldn’t help myself thinking of this folding shield again: (chapter 83) It vanished, and as such it was stolen. Did the mysterious lord Song take it away in order to force Yoon Seungho to paint? The older version of this scene: (chapter 4) And remember that the “paper” is also connected to paintings. However, since this is a reflection of episode 4, I am more inclined to think hat the real purpose was to take the picture and the man had never the intention to return it. Naturally, at some point, the man had a change of heart concerning the main lead, for thanks to him, he could outlive all his sexual fantasies. And this leads me to the following conclusion. The moment, Yoon Seungho sees this painting again, he will recognize the identity of the thief. To sum up, the paper is the proof of wrongdoings, thereby we have this publication: (chapter 1) The paintings were illustrating that the pedophile was having sex with a minor.

PS: I have still so much to say about the comparison between chapter 5 and 77 and the “paper” that I will write another analysis about this.

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: The rise of the dragon 🐲

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. Yoon Seungho the king

After the end of season 1, I had been contacted by many followers asking me about the possible ending of Painter Of The Night. Many feared for a depressing ending, as Byeonduck had declared that the protagonists would be happy on their own. In their mind, this meant that the protagonists wouldn’t end up together. My reply was that the couple would become happy without getting too dependent on each other. I meant Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum would come to give a new sense to their own life, and their love would help them to have a goal and purpose in their life. And that’s how real couples live. Thus while examining season 1 closely, I came to imagine that Yoon Seungho would become the king and Baek Na-Kyum his painter. As you can see, very early on, I connected the noble to royalty. Why? First, we had the lord outlining his powerful position in front of the painter. (chapter 11) Secondly, I had associated the main lead to the eagle which is the symbol for the kings and emperors in Europe. He was seen here flying (chapter 30), and his fingers reminded me of the eagle’s claws. (chapter 18) And this perception got even reinforced, when I saw this panel: (chapter 52) In this scene, he was sitting like a king surrounded by his “court”. The hanbok had such a design that I couldn’t help myself associating it to Joseon’s monarchy.

However, I have to admit my mistake, for this interpretation was strongly influenced by my own culture and as such European history. Yet, here we are dealing with Korean and as such with Joseon culture. Hence the symbol for Joseon’s dynasty is not the eagle, but the dragon. That’s why when I saw this new image on Twitter , I had another revelation. On the one hand, it actually confirmed that Yoon Seungho was somehow destined to become a king, yet he is not represented by the eagle or the phoenix, but by the dragon. Hence the moment I saw this image, one idiom came to my mind: Dragon king!

2. Yongwang

Because of this sudden association, I decided to look more into it. Thus imagine my surprise, when I discovered this:

https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2022/10/113_324712.html

Yongwang, or Dragon King, is a deity of the river or the sea, overseeing peace in the house, good health and longevity in the family, the harvest, catch and safe sailing. Yongwang is also called Yongsin (Dragon God).

Communities worshipped Yongwang as a water god, holding divine powers to control rainfall. Dragon King worship is closely related to the contemporary practice of staging rituals at village springs or wells that are believed to be dwelling places for Yongwang. Around the country there are also legends regarding dragon springs and dragon wells, created by a dragon that brought rain to repay humans by turning wasteland fertile, which shows that Yongwang is closely related to farming. […] In shamanism, Yongwang oversees not only fishing, but the souls of those who have drowned and died. In the worship of household gods, it is a deity that oversees peace in the household, good health and longevity in the family, the harvest, catch and safe sailing.

Among rituals held for Yongwang in the home by women, the most widely spread is yongwangmeogigi (feeding the dragon king), also referred to as yongsinje (dragon god ritual) and gaetje (fishing ritual). This ritual can take place in three different venues: First is a private well in the backyard; second is the communal well, where, in some cases, a spring ritual (saemje) is held, then water from the well is brought to the home and placed in the kitchen or on the sauce jar terrace for the Dragon King; […] https://folkency.nfm.go.kr/en/topic/detail/2618

The moment I read this article, I couldn’t restrain myself making the parallels between Yoon Seungho and Yongwang. First, the deity in the background reminded me of Yongwang. (chapter 100), though this deity is always accompanied with a dragon and in this picture, the readers couldn’t see one. However, it is possible that the author didn’t desire to reveal too much.

“his most distinctive traits are that his beard, moustache and eyebrows are (usually) “spiky,” protruding in sharp points, sometimes resembling coral, and his eyes are often bulging out like those of a fish. He most often holds the banya-jinju (般若眞珠, flaming pearl of wisdom, a type of ma-niju 摩尼珠), but sometimes a branch of coral or a sword.” quoted from http://www.san-shin.org/EKB-Yongwang-DragonKing.html  

Secondly, we have a strong connection between rain and the main lead’s situation and emotional state. It rained, when the lord had sex with Baek Na-Kyum. (chapter 21) Why? It is because the lord was happy. These were the tears of happiness, which Yoon Seungho couldn’t express contrary to the painter. And this is no coincidence that in chapter 58, it started snowing, when the couple was making love: (chapter 58) And we had the same weather, when Yoon Seungho saved his lover. (chapter 102) The weather was expressing the main lead’s emotions: tears of happiness or sadness. We could say that the lord has the “power” to move the sky.

Furthermore, the well plays a huge role in this story. Many people are found dead in a well (chapter 97), and according to me, the messenger was drown there. (chapter 94) In addition, my theory is that Deok-Jae and/or Jung In-Hun’s body were placed in a jar in order to hide the murders. For me, the jar plays a huge role in Painter Of The Night… thus Byeonduck created such a scene in season 2 (chapter 46) and we have so many jars next to the pond: (chapter 94) [For more read the essay “The secret behind the library”]

Furthermore, this story takes place in Jemulpo, a town situated next to the sea, and Yongwang’s realm is supposed to be in the sea. (chapter 91) This is no coincidence. To conclude, all these elements (rain, jar, well, soul of a deceased), connected to the dragon king, are present in Painter Of The Night. Thus I came to the conclusion that Yoon Seungho is like Dragon king. This reinforces my conviction that the main lead is not only connected to shamanism, but also embodies royalty. So he might not be the king of Joseon, but he is powerful in his own way, though he is not aware of this. And note that the moment he wished to commit suicide by drowning in the pond, he was brought back to life. (chapter 102) Water is his true element.

In different temples, you can discover Yongwang accompanied with a woman. She is also dressed in royal clothes with a small crown. What’s unclear is if she’s another Yongwang or if she’s his wife. And this could be a reference to the painter, who will become Yoon Seungho’s bride, but his true identity will remain hidden.

What caught my attention is that the rituals concerning Yongwang are held by women, which stands in opposition to the shrine and Confucianism. (chapter 85) This means that in the Yoons’ mansion, people didn’t venerate this god. And since the aristocrat made such a statement to the elder Yoon Chang-Hyeon, (chapter 86), I have the impression that in season 4, we will assist to a real ritual to ward off evil and back luck, leading the tormenting souls to the afterlife peacefully.

And this leads me to the following observation, the dragon in Korea and Joseon is perceived as a good omen! He would bring good fortune.

Since the release, I realized that the decorated tree (chapter 100) and this altar (chapter 100) were exposing the presence of a ritual. However, my problem was that I couldn’t determine exactly the nature of the ritual. But by making the connection between the dragon and good fortune, I had now more clues. I have to admit that I can not be 100% sure for this, but this is what I found:

Yonggyeong (Kor. 용경, Chin. 龍耕, lit. dragon’s plowing) is a custom observed on Dongji (Kor. 동지, Chin. 冬至, Winter Solstice) in which people tried to predict the outcome of farming for the upcoming year based on the direction and angle of cracks on the surface of a frozen pond. The custom is also known as yonggari (Kor. 용갈이) or yong-ui batgari (Kor. 용의 밭갈이), both meaning ‘plowing by the dragon.’ When ice covers a pond, there is often a crack that divides the ice sheet into two halves, as though a field were divided along a furrow left after plowing. This phenomenon was considered a trail left by a dragon and, therefore, interpreted as having divinatory power concerning farming success in the year ahead. […]

According to another custom referred to as dongbok (Kor. 동복, Chin. 凍卜, lit. ice fortune-telling), on the eve of the year’s first full moon (the fourteenth of the first lunar month), people left two bowls of fresh water out overnight and positioned them north and south of each other. The next morning, they examined the ice sheet that appeared in the bowls and tried to predict the success of farming in the northern and southern regions.  quoted from https://folkency.nfm.go.kr/en/topic/detail/4622

The timing fits to our story, and we have the presence of bowls in front of the deity in the yard. In my eyes, the shaman had prepared a ritual for the dragon king, and was praying for the success of the farming. Don’t forget that it takes place just before Spring. Consequently, this is not surprising that the lord got connected to peasants and this very early on. (chapter 4) (chapter 6) (chapter 82)

This observation leads me to the following conclusion: Yoon Seungho, as a new version of Dragon King, will bring luck to the commoners and peasants. He will help them to improve their living conditions (education and good farming). As you already know, I consider Yoon Seungho as a representative of Sirhak. [For more information read the essay “The scholars’ fight”] And now, you comprehend why very early on, I expected that Yoon Seungho would become a king. He doesn’t need to become a real “king”, yet there is no ambiguity that his fate is to become famous as a spiritual and fair leader.

3. Dragon and imoogi

That’s the reason why I started looking for more information about the dragon. As the readers could see through the deity, this mythical animal is strongly connected to water!

What caught my attention is that the Korean dragon has no wing, yet it can still fly and he has no beard!! But more importantly, this creature is a combination of different animals: the body of the snake, the antlers of the deer, the forehead of the camel, the nose of a pig, the ears of the cow, the claws of the hawk, the scales of the carp, the fist of a tiger and the eyes of the rabbit! He contains all the strongest features of these animals:

  1. luck for the pig
  2. strength for the tiger
  3. elegance of a deer
  4. stubbornness and resistance of a camel
  5. compassionate and giving nature of a cow
  6. the constant change, the metamorphosis of a snake (cycle of death and rebirth)
  7. the rapidity of a hawk
  8. fertility of a carp
  9. the abundance of the rabbit by sharing its eyes

In other sources, I read that the Korean dragon had also features of the dog, the frog and the sheep. But why does this mythical animal possess so many features from different creatures? It is because this powerful, God-like creature embodies the love and respect Korean people have for the natural world. I would even say that he represents nature, and as such he stands for harmony and justice. By being sharing features of different animals, he can understand their life. This is not surprising that the Joseon kings utilized this animal as their emblem. It symbolizes their power (omnipotence and “immortality”) while substantiating their ability to be fair and just rulers. 

Striking is that we have an allusion to these animals in Painter Of The Night. First, the lord was able to kill the boar (chapter 83) and the deer (chapter 22). Then the lord compared Baek Na-Kyum’s eyes to a rabbit. (chapter 78) Since both resemble each other, I deduce that the main lead has the same eyes, the rabbit’s. Like mentioned above, he utilized his fingers similar to claws: (chapter 18) He would fly like a bird, though he has no wing (chapter 30). His fists in this scene reminded me of a tiger’s: (chapter 54) One might argue that this signification is totally impossible, for the lord doesn’t have the body of a snake. This point can be refuted very easily. What is the major characteristic of a snake is molting. A regularly recurrent event during the activity period of all snakes is the shedding of the skin. This coincides with the lord’s change of clothes. The latter reflected his downfall and rising. Furthermore, this animal is linked to death and rebirth. My avid readers are already aware that I had detected different scenes, where we could witness the lord’s spiritual death and rebirth, like for example in the shed: (chapter 62) When he discovered his misjudgment the next morning, he felt like dead. He no longer saw himself as a lord, but came to view the painter as his new lord : (chapter 66) As a conclusion, Yoon Seungho shares so many similarities with the dragon that I came to view him as one. This explicates why even after getting married, he will never wear a beard! The change of dresses and hair dresses of Yoon Seungho represents the different social status in Joseon society: young master, painter, male kisaeng, slave, peasant, executioner, servant, lord, concubine, “wife”/husband” etc. Moreover, since I had detected parallels between the protagonist and the legend of Dangun, this could only reinforce my conviction that Byeonduck is referring to old tales and religions (and as such Dragon King) in her story. The author has already stated that she won’t create a story with the couple set in our time, and this becomes understandable, if she is constantly referring to old traditions and myths.

According to different sources, the Korean dragon is not born as such. They were once said to be Imoogi , a giant lizzard that resembles sea serpents. They exist several different versions on how Imoogi become Dragons. One said it would take a thousand years for them to become a dragon, while another says they must catch Yeouiju (star) falling from the sky. Thus in temples and in pictures, the Korean dragon is also always represented with a ball.

Another theory that exists and sounds the most logical to me, says that Imoogi was born in a place where living and dead intermingled. It was created in cave where thousands of people were stuck due to war in 420AD. As more and more people started to die in the cave, their intense agony and suffering led the foundation for Imoogi’s birth and therefore it symbolizes destruction and sadness. Imoogi controls the power of birth, death and rebirth. Ouroboros, a symbol of wholeness/infinity is also represented by a snake(serpent) eating its tail.” quoted from https://rtaori60.medium.com/imoogi-the-great-lizard-aca02c6c9b1e

Since it takes 1000 years for an imoogi to transform into a dragon, we have 10 years of suffering in Painter Of The Night. For me, this is not random at all. This means that after chapter 102, Yoon Seungho turned into a real dragon! This corresponds to his Coming-Of-Age. That’s the reason why I don’t think that he will be manipulated again like in season 2 and 3! My avid readers are already aware of the presence of ouroboros in this manhwa. For me, Kim symbolizes the imoogi and Ouroboros! He could never turn into a real dragon. But why does the imoogi need to wait for so long ? Some say that this is a curse, other traditions hold the idea that Imoogi are “pupae” or “larvae” of dragons. And they will become full-fledged and full-fledged dragons after being in the ocean for 1000 years. This signifies that time, experience and patience are essential for this transformation. Thus not every imoogi can become a dragon in the end, and that’s Kim’s fate. He was not able to recognize Yoon Seungho as his “yeouiji”. The shaman’s house reminds me of the cavern (chapter 102), and thanks to the painter, Yoon Seungho’s soul was able to escape this “mental prison”.

And this leads me to the following aspect: Baek Na-Kyum is the lord’s Yeouiji, his fallen star fulfilling all his wishes. That’s the reason why the dragon is never seen without his star. One might say that this is exaggerated. However, my avid readers should remember that I had associated the painter to a star, the sun, in previous essays, even before making the relation between the dragon and Yoon Seungho! This explicates why the lord is carrying his lover like his bride (chapter 45) (chapter 102), similar to the dragon in the picture above. His “star” serves as his guide, support and his source of life. Thus when the main lead confessed to the painter for the first time, the sun entered the bedchamber (chapter 55) and as such his heart and mind.

Therefore I come to the conclusion that in season 4, the readers will witness a clash between two dragons, the king and Yoon Seungho! The fight between the fake and the real dragon! Thus when the author released this panel recently, (Twitter), she was actually announcing the arrival of the monarch in Joseon. Hence you comprehend why I selected such a title, the rise of the dragon. “Lord Song” can no longer hide his true identity.

4. Dragon king and expulsion

My readers will certainly recall that the starting point of this essay was this expression “dragon king” which came to my mind, when I saw the recent publication. Why? First, the main figure was wearing the gonryongpo (곤룡포), where dragons are sewn on it. This hanbok is the everyday robe for the king which explains why the latter is always wearing the red robe all the time he appears in front of people. Hence I made this association in my mind: dragon king. When Byeonduck published this image, , she was naturally creating a new story, another Alternative Universe. The student Baek Na-Kyum who got bullied by the classmate Deok-Jae was suddenly sent back to Joseon, and appeared in front of the king’s bedchamber, Yoon Seungho.

Striking is that this panel resembles a lot to this picture which the author hasn’t used yet: The painter is sitting inside a room, while Jung In-Hun is standing outside. Nonetheless, the position of the characters are very similar. This indicates that the author’s new alternative story is actually inspired by the main story!! This can only reinforce my perception that Yoon Seungho in the main story is associated to royalty. However, since it is a reflection, I deduce that this image is the positive reflection of this scene: How did the learned sir react here? He criticized the painter by stating that this was “filthy”. In this scene, the characters are caught by surprise, but it becomes obvious that there is no disgust or expulsion. In fact, the fall of man took place before, for Baek Na-Kyum was sent to Joseon. In this encounter, I detect attraction and curiosity. Hence I come to the conclusion that in the original story, when this scene took place, , Yoon Seungho was far from being living like a king. As you already know, according to my interpretation, the protagonist was treated like a male kisaeng. That’s the reason why I believe that this scene played a huge role in Yoon Seungho’s liberation, the physical expulsion from hell in the end. Since in the parallel story, the student experienced time-travel and as such rejection and expulsion, I conclude that in the main story, Yoon Seungho must have made a similar experience! But this doesn’t end here, as the readers should keep in the mind the following rule: The painter’s destiny reflects the lord’s.

On the other hand, the manhwaphiles will complain that so far, Yoon Seungho has never appeared as a dragon. Yet, we shouldn’t overlook that the phoenix is the symbol for the Queen in Joseon. (chapter 50) (chapter 52) This means that the mysterious lord Song was actually claiming the main lead as his wife in the last scene. Min and his friends were sent there in order to entertain the protagonist, but they failed. This explicates why the next day, Black Heart was seen with a hanbok of lower quality. (chapter 56) It was, as if Min had been compensated for his bruised face by the mysterious lord Song. However, for the pedophile, Black Heart was just a concubine, and not his main wife! Hence the hanbok had not such a detailed and expensive design. This would explain the villain’s jealousy. And now, if you look back at the hanboks from the main lead, you will recognize his ascent. First, he is wearing green, which is similar to Yoon Chang-Hyeon’s color. At the same time, his hat resembled a lot to Kim’s. (chapter 1) Then later, he is mostly wearing blue which is actually the color of the Crown prince. (chapter 11) Yet, his robes initially have no design. Slowly, the lord is wearing colors and designs that are actually reserved for a king: blue, red, black and purple. This constant change of hanboks symbolizes the “snake molting” and as such his transformation and rising. This is not astonishing that on the night of the bloodbath, he had such a hanbok: (chapter 102) Here, he was no longer acting like a noble, but as a ruler. Don’t forget that according to me, the mysterious lord Song had proclaimed the main lead as his unofficial Queen by giving him hanboks with phoenixes. However, naturally, this was never mentioned to Yoon Seungho directly. Why? It is because Kim usually selects his clothes. However, this rise was not natural, as the lord had no real saying in this matter. The real metamorphosis took place in the shaman’s house, when the lord was sent back to the past and as such the darkness. (chapter 102) The moment he left the “cave”, he went to the mountain and surrounded by the wind and water, he changed into a dragon. This expulsion corresponds to the final release, the lord’s mind is finally freed from the darkness, while I believe that this scene is linked to the lord’s physical liberation. .

5. Nightmare and dream

Above, I had mentioned that the painter was the dragon’s fallen star and the love sessions were strongly connected to the weather. If so, why did it snow, when the learned sir left the mansion? (chapter 44) It is because the main lead was thinking that the painter would actually run away. Thus the door was left opened, and he was wearing warm clothes. Yoon Seungho never imagined that Baek Na-Kyum would remain by his side. Yet, during the previous night, the lord had consoled his lover by embracing him.

Furtheremore, the manhwalovers could also wonder why the lord had a nightmare in the bedchamber after their second love session? The painter’s presence should have brought relief. Moreover, during that night, there was no rain. (chapter 71) But this can be refuted easily. First, don’t forget that during this love session, the lord was acting like a servant pleasing his new lord. So this had nothing to do with Yoon Seungho’s feelings like sadness or happiness. He was determined to keep the painter by his side, and ignoring his own feelings. He never expected the artist to reciprocate his feelings. Secondly, Yoon Seungho’s nocturne vision is not just a nightmare, but also a DREAM! Yes, you are reading this correctly. Only recently, I discovered that all the artist’s visions are a combination of 3 elements: memory, nightmare and dream! I will give you three examples as illustration, for I am slowly running out of time.

Chapter 28: This vision is a combination of these three elements: memory, nightmare and dream. This had happened during the First Wedding Night (memory) (chapter 21), then we have a similar situation in chapter 49: , , but the painter was rejecting this future. Hence he considered it as a nightmare.

  • Chapter 34 : Memory ; nightmare the lord becomes a ghost and confronts the painter with his biggest fears (admitting his attraction, passion for erotic paintings and homosexuality) and dream (The painter’s true desire was that the lord would kiss him, he was deeply longing for his lips, yet he was still in denial in this vision.
  • Chapter 98: Memory, for the painter was remembering the corpse in the courtyard, a dream, as he wished the return of his loved one . He hoped that the lord would take care of him personally. Naturally, the “spirit” is the nightmare .

Since the lord’s fate and personality are similar to the painter’s, I could only come to the conclusion that the lord’s vision in the bedchamber is not just showing the past and the future horror. It also exposes the lord’s dream and hope! 😮

So where were his desires visible? First it was about breaking free from his jail… (chapter 74) This had already happened, but the lord had not grasped the significance. (chapter 53) Besides, he had not opened the door himself. Even when he went to the scholar Lee and opened the door with the his foot, the lord still felt trapped. (chapter 67) Then in season 3, he could break a door, but it was thanks to the painter. (chapter 96) This shows that the lord’s wish to get released had not been fulfilled so far. In my eyes, it is connected to the torture Yoon Seungho suffered and as such to the purge organized by the authorities. That’s the reason why I deduce that the lord will break a door in season 4, and this won’t be by accident and it will be witnessed by many people contrary to chapter 53, 67 and 96! The broken door will reflect the lord’s rise and power, and no one will be able to stop this. In my eyes, this wish is connected to the door in the servants’ quarter. That’s how his imprisonment started.

Moreover, the protagonist was voicing his thoughts, the reproach to Kim and his father! They had abandoned him. (chapter 74) The “dragon” wished to see Kim and his father, and confront them! And this did take place in season 3. Yoon Seungho confronted the butler with his attitude and betrayal (chapter 77), but this argument was just short-lived. He still viewed the valet as a hard-working and trustworthy person. He had just made bad decisions. Then in the bedchamber, the lord could blame the father for his suffering: (chapter 86) As you can see, the lord’s wishes were granted, but the nocturne vision was so difficult to grasp that neither the readers nor the main lead could interpret the message correctly immediately. Besides, the nightmare was mostly silent. But this doesn’t end here.

(chapter 74) In this image, he is floating in the air… a sign that his status is changing. At the same time, this shows that he is escaping from the hands. They are trying to drag the main lead down. Thus I come to the conclusion that the vision was announcing the lord’s transformation (into a dragon) and as such his “rise”. Note that in this image, he is still a teenager, but in the following panel the protagonist has already become an adult. (chapter 74) Simultaneously, the vision also displays the lord’s expulsion from “hell”, the sex orgies (chapter 74). the hands are trying to bring him back. This image displayed that Yoon Seungho would become powerful, and the hands wouldn’t be able to contain him any longer. The pink is a reference to the painter, and not just to the gibang! Thanks to the painter, Yoon Seungho is changing so that he will be able to face the KING, but not only him!! This is what the dream was telling him too. Thus we have this image: (chapter 74) Simultaneously, the dream showed that the lord wished to see this painting again, though deep down, he blames this image for his suffering. As you can see, the vision was revealing the tormented disposition of the lord. He was switching from nightmare to dream and the reverse… a mixture of anxieties and desires.

However, pay attention that the painting was standing behind Yoon Seungho, when the hand grabbed him (chapter 74) This signifies that he was approached by someone from behind, he had not noticed that the “door” had been opened. Thus he never expected his apparition. For me, this perception demonstrates that the painting is not the real cause for Yoon Seungho’s suffering. Since he had turned around, I came to recognize that this scene stands in opposition to the situation in the painter’s nightmare: (chapter 34) The painter had been able to witness the entrance of the ghost contrary to Yoon Seungho. The latter was caught by surprise. This image illustrates the lord’s biggest fear. That’s how I realized that his biggest nightmare is not the pedophile in my opinion, for the main lead in Baek Na-Kyum’s “nightmare” (chapter 34) stands for attraction, honesty and love… thus it should be the opposite in Yoon Seungho’s nightmare: repulsion, betrayal and resent! He fears to admit the truth, the biggest traitor is Kim, but he is still in denial. He has repressed the terrible betrayal from Kim, just like the painter’s, though I think that the biggest traitor in Baek Na-Kyum’s case is not really Jung In-Hun, but Heena. This would explain why Heena noona was not present in the terrible vision in chapter 34. This is not random that we don’t see the face of the owner’s hand. Naturally, the king was involved in this betrayal, for Yoon Seungho is caught between the hand and the painting. He was trapped between two forces.

This means that Baek Na-Kyum will help Yoon Seungho to face the truth: Kim is a traitor and the king is the pedophile. The vision is indicating that the butler will betray him again in the future, backstab him one more time… However, this time he will recognize his action. Why? Because this time, there is light in the room… as Baek Na-Kyum symbolizes the Yeouiju, the fallen star helping the dragon. If the author presents another dream from the main lead, we will definitely get new clues. And this brings me to the following conclusion:

Yoon Seungho had been portrayed as a bird of misfortune on purpose. (chapter 86) In reality, he was a dragon, who could bring luck and fortune to the person who would cherish him. This is no coincidence that the pedophile sent hanboks with the crane (chapter 34), (chapter 45) In his eyes, the main lead brought him luck, as all his wishes got fulfilled, and he was never caught committing a sacrilege or crimes. However, since the presence of Baek Na-Kyum by Yoon Seungho’s side, it looks like nothing is going like planned. The main lead is not only drifting more and more away from him, he even left everything behind. That’s the reason why I believe that the dragon, the king, will vent his anger on many people in season 4, a new version of this scene. (chapter 30), but much more brutal and violent!  While this “dragon”, the king, stands for court, and as such civilization and immobility, the Korean dragon embodies nature and hope for commoners who dreamt of ascending the ranks! This is not surprising that Baek Na-Kyum is slowly ascending the ranks, while in the past Kim was acting as the unofficial lord of the Yoons’ mansion.

As a conclusion, in season 4, expect a battle between an “imoogi” and dragons. In addition, it becomes obvious that the winners will be our beloved couple. Since Yoon Seungho was turned into a “dragon”, I am more than ever convinced that he will act like in season 1: confident, perceptive, smart and cheerful! He can not longer be used like a pawn, for the “dragon” can not be tamed! And removing the falling star would signify the dragon’s death!

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: Sex or Love? ❤️ Version with only 10 pictures

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/

In this essay, we will try to answer what the characters have been seeking during their intimacies. Did they want sex or love?

If we look at the first sex session, it becomes clear that Seungho was looking for sex, or more precisely speaking, for excitement and arousal. He wanted to see a new erotic painting so that he would get aroused from it again. That’s the reason why in the chapter 1 he asked to the painter while taking care of the noble:

Chapter 1

This truly reveals that sex as such didn’t create much pleasure in his sexual life. The paintings Baek Na-Kyum created were the only tools that could arouse him. On the other hand, Jihwa has always been longing for Seungho’s love, but used sex as an excuse to get closer to him. He even hoped that at some point his childhood friend would come to fall in love with him. In other words, for Seungho the sex session was more for sex, more precisely for sexual stimulus, while it was love that motivated Jihwa hence he made love to Seungho.

Yet at the pavilion, this situation somehow changed. Seungho showed arousal without any external  (chapter 3) stimulus, his phallus was still erected after Jihwa’s first climax. It looks like Seungho was attracted by Jihwa… so much that his appetite couldn’t be satiated. This gave Jihwa the impression that something had been triggered in Seungho. He was finally appealed to him, this gave him the illusion that his dream had come true. He mistook the excitement as a sign of “love” making him believe that he had now more privileges than the other sex partners. In his mind, the sex at the pavilion was love and even love for him, while in reality for Seungho it was just the discovery of real pleasure in sex. He had finally come to love sex with men. Since he kept seeing the painting in his mind, it was as if he was making love to himself. Hence I interpret that for the powerful noble the sex at the pavilion is a mixture of sex and love. He finally comes to love sex with men and to love himself as a seme. He feels his own attraction.

That’s why he says: “I can’t think of anything else”

  These words truly expose that he isn’t paying attention to Jihwa’s needs and doesn’t focus on giving him pleasure. It was all about his own ecstasy and sexual enjoyment. But since Jihwa is used to Seungho’s selfishness, he didn’t pay too much attention. He was just happy that Seungho had now become a real homosexual and even felt enticed by him. That’s why he acts as if he was a lover after the sex session at the pavilion. Now, imagine his disappointment. In chapter 5, Jihwa comes back only to discover that the attraction and excitement was so short-lived. He can’t focus on him because of the painter, hence he sends the noble away:

In any case, I am not in the mood today. You may leave”. (chapter 5) 

Then later, the young noble is reminded by Seungho that he was just looking for sex and nothing more, while we know for a fact that Jihwa has been longing for his love all this time.

chapter 13

Here, it becomes clear that Jihwa never really understood Seungho’s true motivations behind the sex parties. He really thought that the rich noble was just looking for sex as a diversion and entertainment, while there was another motivation behind all this: the revenge against the father. He never imagined that Seungho was not a homosexual for the start. He must have explained the issues with the arousal that Seungho had no deep feelings for the sex partners. However, deep down, the powerful master was longing for something else: genuine love.

Then we have the “wedding night” in the painter’s chamber (chapter 20-21). During that night, Baek Na-Kyum confessed his “love” for the learned sir. He was longing for his love because he had been rejected by the low noble before (chapter 19). The drunkenness allowed him to express his love based on an illusion and manipulation. That’s why we see him kissing Seungho so tenderly and even embracing him while caressing his back:  (chapter 20)

On the other side, the lord was rather looking for sex. He had been wanting to taste the young man and Jihwa’s words

Yoon Seungho has fallen into sodomy that he is now reaching for a low-born” (chapter 18)  

gave him another justification for this move. Since people kept saying that he was interested in the young man, why shouldn’t he do it for real? That’s why after the long kisses, when he noticed the sexual desires and ecstasy on the low-born’s face due to his blushing and moaning,

the lord suddenly pulled up this butt and removed the artist’s pants quite violently.

These simple gestures reveal his strong desire to have sex with the young man. He is so impatient, he is only focused on his own needs. He has finally the opportunity and is even able to create some arousal in the low-born. He is definitely looking for a good sexual experience with him. However, the long kisses mixed a certain tenderness before are demonstrating that Yoon Seungho was definitely feeling more than sexual desires. The foreplay did last quite some time which was unusual for him. He didn’t even realize the lack of inexperience in the commoner, although he should have sensed it with the innocent confession and kiss. But he is stopped by the commoner who finally concedes to be a virgin. Striking is that Baek Na-Kyum puts his hand on Yoon Seungho’s shoulder while crying,

he is even sitting on his lap. Both are facing each other, their bodies are so close touching each other. Strangely, the noble is not angry at all. He is a little annoyed that his “appetite” has not been fulfilled, yet he doesn’t get angry or violent.

This closeness and the hands on his chest have a calming effect in my opinion that’s why despite his comment showing a certain annoyance, he accepts the tears and the break. Furthermore, this marks the pivotal moment during their “wedding night”. For the first time, Seungho is forced to pay attention to his partner’s needs leading him to create pleasure. Because Baek Na-Kyum spoke about his fear and about being a virgin, Seungho has no other choice to be more careful. And from that moment, if you pay attention to their conversation, you’ll notice that Seungho keeps asking about the well-being of the low-born:

“Why are you so quiet?” / “If you do not tell me… I cannot help you

He makes sure that the other feels comfortable and even comforts him, when he feels pain after the first penetration. And notice that he is hugging the young man, while kissing him. His gaze has totally changed. While in the first part, you could sense pure lust in his eyes, now his gaze is much softer and oozing warmth. He makes sure that his partner takes pleasure and feels good during their encounter. This contrasts so much to the sex scene at the pavilion with Jihwa, where he ignored Jihwa totally and was only focused on himself and his urges. He even apologizes for taking the low-born’s virginity which was preserved for someone else. (chapter 21)

Here, he is smiling and his gaze is full of warmth. For the first time, he has experienced how to make love. He came for sex but found love. By giving ecstasy in his partner, it made him feel good. But this is not the end. Baek Na-Kyum hugs him, which Seungho likes very much. He is feeling warmth and tenderness. Yet, he has to hear the name of the loved one which bothers me. However, he decides to return the huge despite the “misunderstanding”, he wants to give the embrace Baek Na-Kyum is longing for. Therefore he puts him on his lap.

Simultaneously, he asks to be called differently, to let him know that he is not sir Jung In-Hun. He definitely hopes that Baek Na-Kyum will remember calling him “my lord”.

And he kisses the young man with such a gentleness. He is no longer looking for sex but love. That’s why when the low-born confesses that making love to him made him so happy, he can’t help himself to kiss the eye and the tears again.

This gesture shows tenderness and love. He has never heard before that he could make someone happy. He, who has felt so miserable for so long and only saw himself as someone repulsive and terrible, is finally able to evoke genuine happiness. The sincerity moves the lord so much. The tears, the hug, the words have reached his heart. And the climax of their wedding night is when Baek Na-Kyum admits that he likes him by whispering it into his ear, a very sensitive place.

Chapter 21

This gesture and the simple words have an impact on him. So far, he has never been confessed before. All his sex partners were just interested in his body and wealth, even Jihwa, who loves him, was too scared to confess his love for him out of fear that Seungho might reject him for good. For the first time, he felt loved and made someone happy. While he was looking for sex in the beginning, he found love in the end. All this time, he could never connect sex with love. But since he could pleasure the young man so well, he believes that once the man is sober and remembers, he will remember the ecstasy he felt thanks to him. That’s why Seungho believed that the commoner wouldn’t reject him, besides he is used to be sought out. He is well known for his good performance in bed. He thinks that the pleasure felt can move the young man’s heart so that he can switch his place with the teacher. His gestures contrast so much to the first part where he was brutal and rough… in the second part, he is gentle and sensitive. He listens to the low-born’s whispering and sees the tears. His behavior stands in opposition to his attitude at the pavilion with Jihwa where he was blind and deaf. He could only think of his own image from the painting.

Now, if we analyze the sex scene at the pavilion in the chapter 25, we come to realize that here Seungho was expecting to find love. He had imagined that the painter had remembered their night together as Baek Na-Kyum had mentioned that he was keeping something embarrassing in his belongings. Imagine his surprise, when he discovers that the painting was about the masturbation. For Seungho, their first night together was unforgettable hence he is annoyed that the artist has not remembered it. That’s why he tries to repeat the same gestures from that night. He kisses him  (chapter 25

and explains his actions hoping that this would trigger his memories and their love making would be renewed. But none of this happens because he is rejected by the uke. He never expected a violent rejection. He never imagined that pleasure and love are not the same thing. That’s why he decides to force himself onto the poor artist.  He really thinks that his performance will convince the young man to accept him as his partner. So he went to the pavilion in order to find love but it ended up in a violent sex session. Notice that unlike in the chapter 3, he pays attention to the low-born’s reaction. He wants to witness the sexual enjoyment but he only hears and sees pain. He hugs him trying to mimic the same gestures from that night . But he fails and for many reasons. First, he didn’t face the uke but took him from behind, just like he did with Jihwa. So this position doesn’t create intimacy, furthermore he believed that sexual performance was the reason why Baek Na-Kyum cried out of joy during their wedding night. He never thought that feelings play a much bigger part. Actually he has been in love with the low-born right from the start (a growing attraction was there) but since he has never felt anything before, he can’t technically recognize these feelings as love. The low-born went to the pavilion with no expectation and experienced raw sex with such a violence that he couldn’t love the noble. However, like I described it before, the wet dream from the chapter 2 reveals that Baek Na-Kyum desired Seungho so much. He wished that he had become Jihwa and even replaced him. As a conclusion, it started with love and became raw sex for the master, while it was just violent sex for the painter.

In the chapter 31 and 32, it is quite clear that this was all about sex. Seungho wanted him to accept his true sexual orientation, to witness his own sexual enjoyment by seeing his own facial expressions. At the same time, Seungho was still longing for love. That’s why he kisses the man right in the beginning. Sure, he wants to be the cause of his arousal, hence he ensures that he provokes an ejaculation.

Therefore he uses his hand and says this: “This time I will see you get hard for me.

 This is again brutal sex but unlike in the chapter 25, his goal is to give sexual enjoyment to the young man. He has to because if not, the artist would never been able to admit his homosexuality. Hence we can say that the master has learnt his lesson from the rape. He can’t force himself like that, yet he is still quite rough.

On the other hand, Baek Na-Kyum has to accept everything from the master. He can’t reject him as he had promised to do everything he wanted. So the sex with the lord is like a task, an order but at some point, he experiences pleasure in the sex. Furthermore, the noble hasn’t given up on his own sexual needs hence he is not satisfied with one session. This sex marathon is a mixture of love and sex… deep down, the noble is looking for love but he has no idea how to get it. If he is able to evoke ecstasy in the commoner through sex, then he thinks that he will be accepted by the young man. So his sexual performance which made him quite famous becomes his “hindrance” which he doesn’t realize. Besides, he is still quite selfish… it is only, when Baek Na-Kyum has collapsed that he realizes his mistake. And here, it ends with a gentle kiss announcing the change in Yoon Seungho. He can no longer be proud, act like a master. He has to lower himself therefore the kiss marks a pivotal moment in the noble’s life.  (Chapter 32) He has realized that his behavior has not been normal. He is confused hence he doesn’t get angry, when he is criticized by the doctor later. He knows that his emotions made him blind so that he somehow endangered the painter’s life. He must definitely feel guilty but he sees it as his duty to make sure that Baek Na-Kyum can recover.

During that time, he starts sleeping elsewhere. He visits his sex friends and even participates in sex orgies. Here, it is quite clear what the protagonist’s real intention was. He was looking for sex in order to understand what led him to act like a crazy person in the presence of the painter. What was he looking for? During the separation, he makes a huge discovery: sex is not his true motivation, he gets aware that he has been longing for the painter’s attention and affection. Besides, due to Min’s words, he gets aware that he wants Baek Na-Kyum for himself. He is “his”. He knows that now but he has no idea how the artist will react after his recovery. He could definitely blame him for his illness and the sex marathon. Little by little, the main lead is learning to differentiate sex and love. What I mean is that he has learnt that sex is a way to express love, making the partner feel sexual enjoyment and pleasure is making love. It is about to give and not just to take. That’s why from that moment, the seme is focusing on pleasuring the artist. He feels that he needs to wait so that Baek Na-Kyum will come to fall in love with him and will express the need to have sex with him. So he is definitely waiting for Baek Na-Kyum’s move.

But unfortunately, it doesn’t happen like he expected it. Instead of being a love confession like during the first night, the artist is crying. He is so sad and upset that at the end he asks to be hold.

Striking is that Baek Na-Kyum is asking for comfort and love because “being hold” indicates that he wants to be embraced. This is the proof that he is longing for love, yet his mind is very confused. What does he want? Sex or love? The gestures stand in opposition to the words.

On the other hand, the lord is well aware that Baek Na-Kyum can not have fallen in love with him just like that. He knows how deep his love for the low noble was. That’s why he is still hesitating. He doesn’t want to be a replacement, a surrogate like during their “wedding night”. He wants to make the things quite clear.

He will be his sex partner, his lover, the one who embraces him. He feels the huge difference from the love confession in the chapter 20, besides he sees the drawing with Jung In-Hun and he is so turned off. First, he feels the lack of passion and love in the kiss which can no longer be explained by the lack of experience. Besides he realizes that this is related to Jung In-Hun. That’s why he gets jealous and grabs him by the hair.

He is just like during the “wedding night” as his rough side emerges again but this time for a different reason. He is not looking for sex, he wants love but feel that Baek Na-Kyum isn’t giving what he wants. He acts more like a prostitute, someone who is forced to do something. He grabs the Seungho’s phallus without passion, he is just about to be penetrated without any preparation. This contrasts so much to their first night, where Seungho had to be patient and was listening to the uke’s words and moans. So in the noble’s eyes, the young man is looking for sex. Yet the words are reflecting something else which the lord doesn’t realize. All this leads him to think that Jung In-Hun asked him to sleep with him for a favor.

While the lord longed to hear that he was admired and pinned by the young man, he has to listen to a different confession:

That night I spent with you, my lord, that too… My lord, you… you scare me so much, my heart starts pounding…

He finally admits that he remembers their first night together and did it willingly but at the same time, he confesses how scared he is in front of Yoon Seungho. As you can observe, the parallels with their first night are so obvious. He holds the lord again begging him to embrace him, while in the chapter 20 he pleaded the lord to be more gentle. Back then he explained that he was scared because he was a virgin. The hug, the tears, the plead are repeated in the chapter 42 but they are triggered by something else: the huge pain caused by the teacher. The teacher is no longer admired, Baek Na-Kyum wants to be hold in order to overcome the rejection and abandonment. Notice the opposition, in their first night he was so pure, a virgin, and now he has become a prostitute. He has been so hurt that he can’t even say the word “prostitute”. He is accepting his homosexuality and is even accepting the lord as his partner because he has no one to turn to.

Striking is that the noble has a similar reaction than in the chapter 21. He is annoyed but no longer angry. At least, he has been able to obtain something. He is no longer rejected but you can feel his dissatisfaction. He would like to be loved and admired like Jung In-Hun, but this will do now for him.

Chapter 42

And notice that now they are facing each other, Seungho is no longer taking him from behind. This underlines Baek Na-Kyum’s acceptance and willingness. Furthermore, it outlines their closeness and intimacy. While having sex, Baek Na-Kyum can’t help himself taking the hand of the master and puts it on his stomach. “So it’s all the way in…”

Here again, there is a huge difference between the words and the gestures. He speaks like a “prostitute” or someone looking for sex, while with the hand, he shows gentleness and warmth. This time, Baek Na-Kyum is calling Seungho “my lord”. The noble has finally been able to take the teacher’s place for real. And what caught my attention here is that during the wet dream, Baek Na-Kyum wanted to switch places with Jihwa, while in reality the opposite happened. Seungho wanted to switch places with the teacher and become Baek Na-Kyum’s lover. Despite the raw sex which bothers the protagonist, Seungho can’t help longing for love that’s why at the end, he hugs him and kisses him.  (Chapter 42) Here, there is a mixture of tenderness and passion. He is attempting to evoke other feelings in the uke. He actually shows his love for the commoner. While during their first night, the artist cried out of happiness, here the tears are expressing immense sadness and pain. This is the reality: he had never been truly accepted by the low noble. He always saw his social background, a low-born raised at the brothel. He is admitting his sexual orientation which he is now connecting to prostitution. The painter doesn’t see the love in Seungho’s gestures, too immersed in his own suffering. In other words, the lord wanted love here but only got the opportunity to have sex, while deep down Baek Na-Kyum was longing for love but just asked for sex. However, Seungho attempted to shower him with love at the end but the painter didn’t see it, just like during their first night.

As a conclusion, in his mind the lord was seeking for sex and ended up finding love, while Baek Na-Kyum was longing for love and ended up having sex, unaware that his dream of being loved had come true, but he never expected that Seungho would be the one who would come to love him.

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: Truth and memories (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/

Many readers are able to recognize the similarities between chapter 40 and 75, because both episodes contain the following elements:

  • The prank: (chapter 40) (chapter 75: repetition from chapter 74)
  • The presence of the bulletin board (chapter 40) versus (chapter 75)
  • The honest conversation between the protagonists, where Yoon Seungho is encouraging his lover to introspect himself (chapter 40) versus (chapter 75)
  • The color of the sky (chapter 40) versus (chapter 75)
  • The presence of memories: (chapter 40) versus (chapter 75)

Yet despite all the parallels, if I had to give a title to chapter 75, I would select “Memories” and not “Responsibility”, although the latter is still present in episode 75. Why? It is, because the painter talks about his past and youth and as such, he is forced to bring up memories. (Chapter 75) And this made me realize two things: Baek Na-Kyum embodies memories, hence we got many flashbacks from the painter (chapter 2, 11, 23, 34, 38, 40, 41, 46, 56, 57, 60, 66, 74, 75), whereas Yoon Seungho embodies truth. Note that unlike the artist, Byeonduck showed us only a few memories from the aristocrat (chapter 19, 25, 48, 55, 74 with the nightmare). Moreover, the latter is always confronting the painter with his questions and observations. The noble wants him to be true to himself and question his own motivation. (Chapter 75) And this observation made realize another aspect about Yoon Seungho, because unlike chapter 40, the aristocrat stands in the center of episode 75: the significance of memories in the lord’s life.

1. Memories and identity

In order to understand why I came to this conclusion, it is relevant to examine the memories in chapter 40 due to the parallelism. There, the painter recalled the questions and comments from Yoon Seungho, which incited the commoner to ask his teacher about his future. Once the scholar had succeeded, would he become responsible for the painter, like he had implied? And observe that during the confrontation, the artist used a statement from the past: (chapter 29) Thanks to the memories, the low-born had gathered courage and faced his teacher. However, this discussion led to a tragedy. Baek Na-Kyum got hurt, because his learned sir chose to destroy him in the worst possible way. With his words, he showed his true thoughts (chapter 40) and in order to reinforce his statement, he made sure that Baek Na-Kyum would perceive his real gaze: cold and ruthless. (chapter 41) But more striking is that the scholar used memories (the kisaeng house) to define the painter’s identity: he was born to be a prostitute despite his “lessons”. He puts the whole responsibility and blame on the commoner. As a conclusion, the memories served in the conflict to identify Baek Na-Kyum. Who was he really to the scholar? Was he his helping hand, like the low-born claimed, or was he just a “prostitute” according to the scholar?

2. Memory loss and identity

This connection between memory and identity in the manhwa is not random, because according to John Locke’s “memory theory”, a person’s identity only reaches as far as their memory extends into the past. In other words, memory is a necessary condition of personal identity. Thus, as a person’s memory begins to disappear, so does his identity. Therefore, we could say that without memory, there’s no identity. On the other hand, in my previous analysis, I had demonstrated that the lord’s unconscious was trying to force his conscious to remember his past, because he had repressed his traumatic past. This meant that he was suffering from memory loss. Hence we could say, that he lost his own identity. This is not surprising that childhood trauma and memory loss go hand-in-hand. Blocking out memories can be a way of coping with the trauma. It goes even so far that an adult survivor of childhood trauma can even believe that he was never a victim of childhood trauma. Consequently, in case of a permanent memory loss, it signifies that the victim even loses his own identity. Since my theory has been confirmed that the lord was a painter in his youth, chapter 75 actually exposed the memory loss in two different ways:

  1. First, the lord couldn’t even remember painting an orchid (Chapter 75), an indication that his short-term memory was defective due to his lack of sleep.
  2. However, the master’s hand could still paint a orchid without paying too much attention to his hand. It exposes that it was actually an automatic gesture, revealing that he had internalized such a gesture in the long-term memory. And note that when he did this, he mentioned his youth (chapter 36) Therefore I come to the conclusion that Yoon Seungho’s short-term memory is not working properly. Imagine, he could remember one incident from his childhood, but he couldn’t remember painting the orchid. Hence I believe that the lord can’t even reminisce the drawings in chapter 8 and 23 . Only thanks to Baek Na-Kyum’s mention, he was able to recall the drawing. Thus the manhwalovers can comprehend why I consider the artist as a synonym for memories.

3. Trauma and memories

But in the manhwa, there’s more than just memory loss due to a coping mechanism. Traumatic events such as sexual assaults, are encoded differently than more routine due to extreme fear. The victim won’t be able to remember everything, just details, the chronology will be mixed up due to existential fear, that’s why if you recall the following panel, you’ll truly grasp the real atrocity of Yoon Seungho’s suffering. (Chapter 65) While he can’t remember what truly happened due to his poor emotional and physical state, Kim somehow blames him. The young master is so confused that he has to defend himself. This means that after the first rape, the domestic didn’t even comfort the protagonist, but he used the victim’s vulnerable state of mind (who was confused due to this terrific incident) to manipulate the noble’s memory.

That’s why when police investigate a sexual abuse and interview a victim, the latter will always be interrogated twice. The first interview focuses more on the sensory and emotional memories, while during the second, the officers will try to reconstruct the chronology. This explicates why they always wait for quite some time for the second statement. It is necessary, as the memories are now stored and they can be retrieved, although due to fear and stress, the incident can never be properly reconstructed. As you can imagine, Yoon Seungho was not in the capacity to testify about the sexual assault. This terrible event affected his memory so much that he was not given the opportunity to denunciate the crime. He was made speechless in the end due to the insinuation and as such manipulation. I bet, he couldn’t even describe what had truly happened to him. That’s why he repressed the first rape.

4. Amnesia and manipulation

But now imagine this. You are exposed to physical and sexual abuse for more than a decade, this means that your memory will be definitely affected. You are living constantly in fear and stress, two important factors, which can trigger memory loss. [read more here: https://www.verywellmind.com/what-causes-memory-loss-4123636] Like I explained briefly above, terrific events are never encoded normally. This signifies in our case, that the lord’s faculties to memorize were definitely affected due to the constant exposure, which can make him more vulnerable to false memories. Studies show that individuals with PTSD, a history of trauma, or depression are at risk for producing false memories, when they are exposed to information that is related to their knowledge base. This also signifies that they are more receptive for manipulations. Therefore I come to the next deduction that in chapter 68, Kim was definitely attempting to distort the past and create false memories. (Chapter 68) He mixed facts with lies in order to confuse his master’s judgement and memory. That’s the reason why it is important now to recall my initial statement: without any memory, there’s no identity. This signifies that in chapter 68, when Kim tried to give him memories, he desired to give him a certain identity: he was similar to his father. The latter would punish or imprison the boy and not release him. Giving a false reflection and identity is something Kim had never done before in front of his master, as he knew that his master feared his own image. However, he never imagined that Yoon Seungho would react differently. Instead of pushing away the painter, he let the artist choose his fate.

5. Making memories and forgiveness

However, in order to comprehend the topic memory, it is relevant to know how memory functions. The latter is divided in 3 parts: encoding, storage and retrieval. And in order to encode information, you have to utilize your senses. There are 3 types of encoding: semantic (words), visual and acoustic (sound). The manwhaphiles should recall that according to my interpretation, Yoon Seungho had been deprived of all his senses, therefore he lived like a ghost. And this signifies that he couldn’t make any memory at all. And with no memory, you have no identity and as such no life. That’s why when he cut ties with Jihwa the first time, he never mentioned the word “memories”, but time spent together: (Chapter 18) In my opinion, this shows that Yoon Seungho had no true memory in reality. He knew that they had sex together, but that was it. It was more like “the night is long and I need to kill time so that dawn can come faster.” Note that he never mentions their childhood together. With this interpretation, it becomes comprehensible that the main lead could act, as if nothing had happened between Jihwa and himself after the topknot incident. From my point of view, he had literally forgotten the incident, yet for Jihwa, it meant that he had been forgiven. (Chapter 59) And this explicates why Yoon Seungho barges in the mansion in chapter 67: he makes it clear that he won’t forget what happened. (Chapter 67) The real forgiveness occurred in chapter 59: Despite the caused pain, Yoon Seungho was willing to overlook the terrible action (chapter 59), but he made it clear that he would never reciprocate the feelings. This was real forgiveness from my perspective, whereas in the past, Yoon Seungho couldn’t remember anything. Jihwa had the terrible habit to use the past in order to torment his childhood friend, which always triggered buried emotions connected to memories, which the noble couldn’t control. From my point of view, the lord only had flashbulb memories which the readers could discover in chapter 55: (chapter 55)

“A flashbulb memory is an accurate and exceptionally vivid long-lasting memory for the circumstances surrounding learning about a dramatic event. Flashbulb Memories are memories that are affected by our emotional state.” quoted from https://www.simplypsychology.org/flashbulb-memory.html

These memories connected to emotions were the remains of his deeply repressed memories. The lord could only remember the feelings he had felt during his traumatic past. To sum up, the lord had no real recollection of his past, and the few things he knew where manipulations and lies explained by his butler. Therefore you can comprehend why Kim got scared, when he heard that lord Song asked for a meeting. The latter could definitely reveal new information and let the protagonist realize that he was truly suffering from memory loss.

6. Recovery from amnesia: memories

However, due to the exposure to arts, his eyes got healed, hence he could sense positive emotions and as such create good memories (visual encoding). From my point of view, when Baek Na-Kyum entered his life, the noble had started developing good memories, because so far, all he had were traumatic memories. However, Yoon Seungho’s capacities to memorize were under-developed due to the lack of practice. This explicates why he shows no interest to discover why the commoner stopped painting. This was not meaningful to him, and the readers should know that people will only memorize significant information. The emergence of his memory is visible in chapter 1. We see him speaking about his nightly activities so positively, but observe that he is only talking about recent and meaningful memories. (Chapter 1) Striking is that when Baek Na-Kyum confronts him with his poor image (“man consumed by lust”) (chapter 4), the lord is bothered. He is forced to ponder why he is described like that, hence he has to recall events from the past. Nonetheless if you pay attention, you’ll notice that the more time passes on, the more memories the lord has. They are strongly intertwined with the paintings. The latter helped him to reminisce the sex sessions and his past. He can’t forget how the painter masturbated behind the door. He is even getting more and more good memories. (chapter 18) Then in chapter 19, he reminisces the painter’s facial expressions which puts him in a good mood. (Chapter 19) This explicates why Yoon Seungho was so moved by the painter’s confession during their Wedding night. For the first time, he experienced warmth and love, he even heard a love confession. This could only be stored as a wonderful memory. At the same time, he hoped, the artist would create a picture of this night in order to ensure that this memory was real. Moreover, note that in chapter 58, he externalized how much this night meant to him. (Chapter 58)

Yet, the manhwaphiles can detect that in his confession, the memory is not entirely described as positive: “haunt”. This explicates why I consider the Wedding night as a turning point in Yoon Seungho’s life. This memory is a combination of positive and negative elements. The lord wished to relive this, but he was not satisfied, because he knew that he had impersonated the scholar. Moreover, the manhwaphiles should reminisce that after this night, the lord will do terrible things to the artist and as such, he gets now terrible memories. That’s the reason why in my opinion, Byeonduck chose to expose the rape as a flashback from the master’s perspective. Because of his bad actions, Yoon Seungho feels huge pangs of conscience and can’t act like nothing happened. He is now forced to remember. However, in my eyes it is different from the past. Before, he was just a ghost, hence he was incapable to get memories, with Baek Na-Kyum’s help, he can get memories which will help him to face his own traumatic past.

7. Memories and learning

There’s one aspect, strongly connected to memory, which I didn’t mention so far: learning.

” Learning and memory operate together in order increase our ability for navigating the environment and survival. Learning refers to a change in behavior that results from acquiring knowledge about the world and memory is the process by which that knowledge is encoded, stored, and later retrieved.” quoted from https://opentext.wsu.edu/psych105/chapter/8-2-how-memory-functions/

As you can see, in order to change, the lord needs memories. Through positive and negative experiences, the noble can gain knowledge leading to a change of attitude which the readers could observe. Gradually, the noble learnt from his mistakes and good memories. Therefore, this is no coincidence that when in chapter 75, Baek Na-Kyum talks about his past and memories, he criticizes his master: (Chapter 75) He gives him the impression that he will never change, the lord wouldn’t even remember him after his death. Now, you grasp why he reproaches Yoon Seungho his fickle nature, he is indirectly referring to the lord’s memories. His feelings will fade away just like memories. He will forget him. What the painter doesn’t realize is the following: this date is actually an important moment in Yoon Seungho’s life. For the first time, he gets to discover the painter’s memories and past, which now the noble can store as his own. He will never forget this day, especially when he heard that the painter would cry because of him (a new version of chapter 21: (chapter 21) , but here out of concern. In other words, Baek Na-Kyum would like to be remembered. Hence he complains that the lord didn’t call for him. And this can only make the lord happy, because he can detect through the painter’s words that the latter is longing for his presence and care. From my perspective, Yoon Seungho has finally grasped why the artist is not truly honest with him. Therefore he can only tease his lover pushing him to make the first step. Let’s not forget that right now, the master is now treating his lover as his new lord. So the latter has to call for him. (Chapter 75) Here, the protagonist clearly displays that he has never forgotten his companion. Their date is so important for two reasons. It allows the noble to gather more information about the commoner, and get a really good memory before the next tragedy.

From my point of view, it will help him to face his own traumatic past. Let’s not forget that a rape is planned, so if the noble was to discover this, he would be definitely reminded of his own past. Simultaneously he would be able to help his lover to recover from the traumatic incident. We shouldn’t forget that during the kidnapping, the lord’s smile was the reason why Baek Na-Kyum didn’t lose his sanity (Chapter 60) and could cope with the kidnapping much better. Note that he has no nightmare afterwards. And this detail is important, because we have to envision that while Yoon Seungho was exposed to physical and sexual abuse for a decade, he had no good memory at all in order to remain sane. Moreover, he never felt loved. Consequently, he couldn’t even think of anyone in a positive way. That’s why he was so damaged in the end. (Chapter 57)

8. The impact of Yoon Seungho’s traumas on his mind and attitude

And this leads me to the next observation: Due to his childhood trauma, the lord’s memory was affected and didn’t work properly, as for a long time, his memory was not encouraged to encode events. On the other hand, because of Baek Na-Kyum, Yoon Seungho was forced more and more to face his traumatic past, therefore his fears and abandonment issues came to the surface. This explicates why he couldn’t pay attention to details and never questioned the circumstances of the first abduction. Note that during the night at the physician’s, he still doesn’t trust his own senses. (Chapter 58) This signifies that he is unsure if what he is experiencing is real or not. From my point of view, the memory loss and his life as ghost affected his brain and the way to encode and store information. Hence he has no real recollection of the incident with Deok-Jae (chapter 30 and 53). That’s why he is not asking for his whereabouts. However, I believe to see a turning point in chapter 75. By giving the lord the opportunity to have a real date, where he could hear and see that Baek Na-Kyum was definitely affected by him, the noble will react differently compared to the first abduction and after the painter’s first flashback. He will not lose his mind blinded by his emotions and insecurities, he knows that the artist chose him. And he won’t blame himself like for the first flashback. Remember that in chapter 66, he never called the physician. Why? Because deep down, he knew that he was responsible for the panic attack. (Chapter 66) That’s why he remained by his side, until the artist had recovered. Thus the manhwalovers should envision this: After meeting Nameless, Baek-Na-Kyum will get a panic attack. (Chapter 75)

This is what I wrote in the first version:

“However, this time, the noble will wonder how this could happen. They had a nice conversation, where they exchanged thoughts. He is not responsible and it can’t be the alcohol. Moreover, he will recall his lover’s words: He won’t focus on his own emotions, but will try to calm down the artist and investigate why the painter reacted like that.” It is definitely possible that he brings back the painter to the mansion and decides to visit the physician in order to ask for an advice. From my point of view, thanks to the new memories, the noble is learning more about his surroundings and gaining more experience.”

However, the reality was that Yoon Seungho thought that the painter’s panic attack had just been triggered by the entertainers. (Chapter 76) He didn’t take his words seriously, for he believed that he had discovered the truth. Therefore the lord never investigated the circumstances of the kidnapping. Since he thought, he knew the truth, he had no reason to question this. Why did the Joker scare the painter so much? Thus the lord didn’t take the memories from the painter seriously. How could he, since he had been already informed? However, the revelation from Min had diverted Yoon Seungho’s attention from the real problem: the involvement of the helping hands (Kim, Deok-Jae, No-Name) and of the mastermind behind this.

9. Baek Na-Kyum’s memories and truth

What caught my attention is that Baek Na-Kyum is also hurt, though he has memories from his past. What he confessed to his lover represented a bad memory, and this made him feel guilty. Striking is that he believes, he knows the truth, as he can reminisce his past. Yet, he is making a huge mistake: memories are by no means facts, they are biased and even tainted. The artist took the scholar’s words as face-value. He never questioned his words, therefore he blamed himself for Jung In-Hun’s failure. Here, I would like the manhwaphiles to notice the parallels between Jihwa and the artist: both feel responsible for a tragedy, while in reality it was not the case. Both were victims of manipulations and lies.

My theory is that the learned sir imagined that he had finally the possibility to get a high position. Yet the officials thought, the teacher was the author of the erotic pictures. Remember that in the Alternative Universe, the protagonist used Jung Na-Min as his artist name. In other words, the low noble was offered a position as painter, but he couldn’t work for the officials, as he was not the author. Hence he blamed Baek Na-Kyum for not securing a post. It was, as if he had stolen it from him. I think, Jung In-Hun published poetry, but couldn’t get recognition. Therefore he used the incident (discovery of the erotic pictures) in order to punish him and force him to give up on painting. He couldn’t allow that a commoner was more successful than him. But now, we have to wonder why Baek Na-Kyum talked about his past. From my point of view, an important detail played a huge role at the inn: (Chapter 74) Observe that the woman has a similar hair dress than his noona. That’s why I believe that when he saw her, he must have been reminded of her. Note that when he speaks about the leftovers, he describes leaving food as a sin, but strangely, in chapter 40/41, he had the opposite attitude. (Chapter 41) He didn’t eat all the sweets or even skipped meals. (Chapter 41) In other words, he didn’t eat everything and committed a sin. This indicates a certain hypocrisy, simultaneously Baek Na-Kyum’s lack of critical thinking, when it comes to his noona. Moreover, he says the opposite of what he thinks. In chapter 74, he claims that the lord has changed(chapter 74), in episode 75, he claims that he has not improved his behavior. The painter’s memories clearly reveal Heena’s strong influence, which explains why he doesn’t make the first step in the end. He would like the lord to become responsible for him. But Yoon Seungho would like the opposite, because that way, the low-born can never claim that he was forced or pressured by him. In my eyes, Baek Na-Kyum still fears to be perceived as a man consumed by lust, if he makes the first move.

That’s why I believe that Yoon Seungho embodies the truth, while Baek Na-Kyum represents the past and memories. The commoner’s past will become the trigger for Yoon Seungho to decide to discover the truth about his own past and as such regain his own identity: he was a talented painter with a promising future. Since the low-born’s past with the kisaeng and the scholar are more recent, it is much easier for Yoon Seungho to unveil the lies concerning Baek Na-Kyum’s past in the kisaeng house. At the same time, thanks to the physician, Baek Na-Kyum is gathering information about his lover’s past (chapter 57), which will assist him to regain his lost memories.

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: Refraction 🌈

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/

Announcement: I updated the essay “Kim: a dog, a matchmaker or a father?”

You are probably wondering about the selection of such a title and its signification, especially if you are not familiar with physics. What is refraction exactly?

“Refraction is the bending of light when it goes from one medium to another so, when a ray of light passes through a glass prism, refraction of light occurs both, when it enters the prism as well as when it leaves the prism. Since the refracting surfaces are not parallel, therefore, the emergent ray and incident ray are not parallel to one another. In this case the ray of light is deviated on passing through the prism.” quoted from https://www.jagranjosh.com/general-knowledge/refraction-of-light-through-a-glass-prism-1456391639-1#:~:text=Refraction%20is%20the%20bending%20of,when%20it%20leaves%20the%20prism.&text=In%20this%20case%20the%20ray,on%20passing%20through%20the%20prism.

People observe this phenomenon, when there’s a rainbow.

Jagranjosh

This spectacle can only occur, if there are rain and sunlight together. Due to the presence of water, the beholder perceive the existence of light, which is actually a combination of all colors. Although light seems colorless to our eyes, it is not correct. It is just that our brain is used to perceive light as such. Now, you are probably intrigued how I could associate the manhwa with laws of refraction, when the author never drew a rainbow. But refraction is not just limited to the rainbow. It is also perceptible under other circumstances, like for example: when the sunlight goes through a real glass prism

Jagranjosh

As you can observe, there’s a deviation and dispersion of the light through the glass prism. So when did the manhwaphiles witness this experience in Painter Of The Night?

Byeonduck applied laws of refraction in two episodes:

  1. chapter 55:
  2. chapter 74: Yes, the presence of the colorful bubbles are a sign of refraction.

And these episodes are quite important, for due to the refraction, the readers can finally perceive the presence of light and as such warmth. When the episode 55 was released, I had explained that these bubbles of light announced the revival of the lord’s body. He was no longer living as a zombie, he was finally becoming a real human. But only now, I’ve recognized the real signification of these bubbles of light. (chapter 55) I am not saying that my previous statement was wrong. It is just that I’ve realized the gravity of the lord’s wounds. Yoon Seungho opened the door of this bedchamber, which meant that he was letting the sunlight enter his room. This had a symbolical meaning: the noble was finally allowing the light to enter his inner world. That’s why in this chapter, the noble confessed. He was opening up to the painter and permitting him to see the darkness in his mind and heart. He was jealous and he expressed his murdering and suicidal thoughts (chapter 55), therefore he imagined that the painter would run away, too shocked by the obscurity of his inner world. And this signifies that until chapter 55, the lord’s soul and body were trapped in the darkness. Now, you might come to the conclusion that he was in a similar situation than Jihwa. Because the latter was figuratively deaf and blind, he had the impression to live trapped in a dark room, separated from the outside world. However, this is just a false perception. Jihwa was still in possession of his body, he could feel through his hands. Consequently, he could detect the presence of others. There’s no doubt that he felt lonely and was also lacking for warmth, however the protagonist was in the worst possible situation. He had been literally swallowed by the darkness. (chapter 74) He could feel nothing at all. Even his own mind was trapped in the darkness reinforced by his huge guilt triggered by father Yoon. Remember when I wrote that his body was covered by an armor, this referred to his loss of sensation. Imagine yourself in this situation: everything around you is dark and cold and you can feel nothing at all. No wonder why the lord came to believe that he was just a ghost. This is definitely the negative version of Blaise Pascal’s philosophy: cogito ergo sum (I think, therefore I am). Yoon Seungho could only recognize his existence through his thoughts. And the chapter 74 was terrible for two reasons: it unveils to the manwhaphiles how the lord became a ghost. We see him disappearing in this blackness step by step:

  1. His powerlessness in front of brutality. He can’t protect himself (chapter 74) He can no longer yell for help and use his leg in order to defend himself, which contrasts to the beginning of his nightmare. (chapter 74)
  2. Then when his body starts flying in his terrible vision (chapter 74), this displays that the noble is losing the control of his body which can be explained with the usage of drugs. But he is still feeling the touch.
  3. Then the hands are covering up his mouth indicating that he can no longer express himself (chapter 74), but at the same time, it indicates the loss of sensation. This panel symbolizes that he is no longer possessing his body at all. All he has left are his eyes.
  4. Even at the end, he loses his sight… (chapter 74) This is the last vision he has before his eyes are also trapped in the darkness.

So the manhwalovers have now to question themselves: How do you leave this darkness, when you are surrounded by it? It is impossible, you can’t even feel the warmth of a body, because even your sense of touch is dead. In order to perceive the presence of light, you need colors… like I explained above. Light is composed by all the colors. And that’s how the lord could slowly leave his state of torpor. When he saw the erotic panels from Baek Na-Kyum, he could see the light, as they embodied love and warmth. That’s why he became so “addicted” to the pictures. They stood in opposition to the world he had been exposed to: sex, not as prostitution, but as a symbol for affection and warmth. The “colors” from the paintings helped him to see the light. After this new interpretation, it becomes understandable why he treasured so much the artist’s hands.(chapter 1) They were the reason why he could see glimpses of light in the darkness of his world. And since he became trapped in the blackness due to hands of scholars and officials, it is not surprising why Baek Na-Kyum’s hands are healing him. Therefore, when the painter touched his chest with his hand (chapter 73), he purified his heart. This explicates why in chapter 74, the noble is no longer interested in sex. The hand liberated his heart and allowed him to express his affection differently. At the same time, the loving gaze in the painter is the reason why the lord feels warmth in the end. All he ever wanted was to see light, but he truly discovered it through the painter’s embrace. (chapter 21) That’s why even in the darkness of the room, he could only be moved. Therefore he was focused on the painter’s body in the first place. The warmth made him realize the existence of light next to his body.

So when Yoon Seungho met the commoner for the first time, his eyes were already healed, as his eyes were exposed to colors constantly. No wonder, why the main lead fell in love at first sight. He had every reason to love the protagonist. The latter had saved him through the colors, making him view glimpses of light. Hence he could feel alive again. But more importantly, he could sense in the pretty face genuineness and naturality. But what the main lead didn’t realize is that Baek Na-Kyum was his mirror and as such his reflection. In other words, he was his glass prism. Since the painter felt attracted to him, the lord saw in the first painting (chapter 2) that he was handsome and attractive. That’s why he could experience his sexual emancipation afterwards. A part of his self-hatred disappeared. However, in order to liberate the lord entirely from his darkness, he needed to drop his fathers’ doctrines, which represented the biggest problem. His healing process got delayed due to Kim’s interventions and the painter’s own indoctrination. Striking is that Baek Na-Kyum was entirely healed by the lord, even before the latter has properly recovered from his own traumas. This clearly outlines his selflessness in the end.

And now, if I compare the first bubbles (chapter 55) to the ones from chapter 74, you’ll detect a huge difference. While there are only three colors in the first image (white, red, blue), the bubbles from chapter 74 remind us more of the colors from a rainbow. This coincidence with the character’s development. Yoon Seungho is seeing more and more light in his mind and heart. In chapter 55, only his conscious allowed the warmth and light associated to the painter to enter his inner world. But it is not the same with the unconscious… only in chapter 74, the light is entering his unconscious which explains why he is slowly remembering what happened to him. The lord can finally perceive his nightmares, while in the past they were just connected to terrible sensations. (chapter 38) I doubt that in chapter 38 and 59, he saw images. Due to the darkness of his inner world, he came to repress the horror he was exposed to. Thus it is not surprising that Yoon Seungho is not sleeping next to the painter, even after that night. (chapter 74) He still has this fear that Baek Na-Kyum might get affected by the blackness of his unconscious. At the same time, when he is facing the sleeping artist, it gives him comfort. Remember that the low-born is the glass prism of Yoon Seungho, hence his peaceful sleep helps the lord to relax. Note that he is lying in a fetal position, an indication of the return of his innocence. There’s no doubt that the visits in the painter’s study during the night (chapter 74) help the lord to relax and move on from his insomnia. Since he is now seeing light and feeling warmth thanks to the painter’s presence, he no longer feels the need for physical intimacy. Hence the lord can’t restrain himself showering Baek Na-Kyum with affection and care. However Yoon Seungho is not realizing that thanks to the artist, he is finally able to show his true self: a phoenix who got burnt by selfish and greedy people. This explicates why Yoon Seungho still perceives himself as a bad omen, because he can still see the blackness in himself. On the other side, this truly exposes the ravages caused by the traumatic experiences. From a sensitive, gentle, selfless and intelligent man, he became the opposite, reflecting the real image of the ones who destroyed him.

The irony is that the lord is not aware of his own transformation. In his mind, the painter has become his sun, hence he gave him a yellow-orange scarf. (chapter 74). When he sees the light next to the painter, he has the impression that it comes from the artist, while in reality, the painter is just mirroring his own light and warmth. Remember that the mirror in the manhwa has the form of the glass prism described above: (chapter 28) And in this panel (chapter 74), it is particularly visible, as the light coming from Yoon Seungho is reflected in the painter (glass prism), hence the colors are behind the artist’s head. This is not surprising why Baek Na-Kyum is so affected. Everything from Yoon Seungho is exuding love and care. At the same time, the lord serves also as a mirror for the painter. The latter can only sense love and warmth in the lord’s face and gaze. (chapter 74) He can only be smitten. But since the lord is also the glass prism for the painter, you can observe the refraction in this panel: (chapter 74) The painter’s affection is literally shining through the lord so that colors appear behind the lord’s back. The diversion becomes obvious for the readers, who are the beholders of such a phenomenon This is not surprising that the painter is falling more and more for Yoon Seungho. That’s why he blushes after a good night kiss. (chapter 74) He is now even longing for Yoon Seungho’s warmth, hence he stands up during the night and looks at the light in the lord’s chamber. (chapter 74) However, the lord is keeping his distance due to the darkness still existing in his unconscious. He fears that this could represent a nuisance to the painter’s peaceful sleep. Moreover, he still perceives himself as impure contrary to Baek Na-Kyum. What the lord fails to recognize is that the artist seems to have sleeping trouble now, because he is longing for his lover’s warmth too, another clue for the painter’s thirst for love and strong libido. There’s no doubt that as long as the commoner doesn’t claim the lord’s bed as his own and expresses the wish to share the bed with his lover, the latter will never suggest this to Baek Na-Kyum.

Because the lord allowed the light from the painter to enter his spirit and heart, he is shining like a sun, which coincides with the animal embodying the noble: the Phoenix. In other words, the nightmare from the aristocrat should be judged as a necessary healing process. (chapter 74) Slowly, the lord is getting rid of the blackness. He is turning his light to the Earth, the painter, mistaking his lover for a sun. Their blossoming love will definitely bring the artist to improve his talent and creativity. But it will have the same effect on the noble. The longer Yoon Seungho is spending his time with Baek Na-Kyum, the better the lord can perceive the colors and light. Through art, the noble will rediscover his lost passion: painting and even poetry. And in my opinion, in order to reconnect to painting, the lord needs to sense the colors for real. The painting in his nightmare was made of black ink and nothing more. (chapter 74)

Both are so fascinated by the colors coming from the refraction that they are seeing the world in bright colors now. However, their fascination for the light makes them careless. They are not paying attention to their surroundings. (chapter 74) In their innocence, they are not realizing that if there’s light, there exists darkness too. Consequently, they don’t detect that darkness is already gathering around them, preparing for the next attack. From my point of view, the darkness should be perceived either as an eclipse or as clouds. Imagine the lord’s reaction, when he loses his prism glass, he will feel definitely devastated. However, there is one thing that even darkness couldn’t destroy after all these years: the lord’s intelligence. He might have acted stupidly during the second season, but his mind was clouded by his emotions. Now that he knows that the painter chose him and is no longer pushing him away, he will be able to use his brain properly. He has more evidences for that. Baek Na-Kyum allowed him to put the scarf properly. Observe the difference between the first (chapter 74) and second image. (chapter 74) The knot is different and he has now a hat. The noble put the scarf exactly like in chapter 69. (chapter 69) Moreover, the new headgear, reserved for women, is a sign that Baek Na-Kyum is accepting his marriage officially. (chapter 74) Hence there is no ambiguity that his disappearance will lead to an investigation and Yoon Seungho will interrogate his staff. Finally, neither an eclipse nor the clouds can truly separate the sun from the Earth, consequently they won’t be able to disrupt this harmonious relationship for long. As a conclusion, the painter as a representative of all virtues could only become Yoon Seungho’s savior, as he brought light into his darkness. This explicates why Yoon Seungho views the commoner as his god and lord. (chapter 71) He was as strong as a god, when he entered his obscure world. No wonder why the noble is so humble and thankful towards his lover. He brought him back to life, hence his life can only revolve around the painter from now on. The sun will never sense his own light and warmth, unless it witnesses how the nature on Earth is blossoming. It needs the existence of another planet to realize the existence of its own heat.

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