Painter Of The Night: «Thank god 🙏 he didn’t see nor hear a thing about that awful matter »

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The title of this essay comes from the following picture: (chapter 105) „Thank god, he didn’t see nor hear a thing about that awful matter“. This is what Heena said in the original version. [Here I would like to thank my follower @katamins again for her help]

1. Heena’s words

What caught my attention is that in the Korean version, the kisaeng employed the expression „Thank god“, displaying not only her relief but also her religiousness. In my eyes, Byeonduck‘s intention was to expose Heena‘s religion one more time, she is a Christian. Another important aspect is that her statement implies that Baek Na-Kyum can not testify about „that awful matter“, for he saw and heard nothing. The problem is the idiom „that awful matter“ is really ambiguous. Which incident is she referring to? Yoon Seungho‘s crime in the shaman’s house or her „murder“? While many readers only thought about Black heart’s execution, I believe that the noona was referring to her own “execution” as well. Why? It is because the lord refused Baek Na-Kyum to see his own sister. (chapter 105) He desired to spare his heart. To conclude, “that awful matter” is referring to the whole prank and its consequences.

On the other hand, in the English version the kisaeng‘s declaration is more precise. Because of the expression „that terrible day“, it becomes obvious that Heena is referring to her lies and manipulations in the gibang. (Chapter 97) At the same time, the idiom includes the staff‘s tricks as well: the corpse in front of the gate and the maids‘ badmouthing (Chapter 97) (chapter 98), because it happened during the day and at downfall. Due to this expression, the readers can detect the presence of Yoon Seungho’s white lie. The painter had clearly mentioned what he had heard before. (Chapter 104) However, he had been silenced by his lover, when the latter suggested to him to view everything as a nightmare. The lord made the mistake not to listen to the victim and witness.

On the other hand, if we take the noona‘s original testimony into consideration, we get the impression that the artist can not testify about the night of his „abduction“ and the murders . It is because he didn‘t see or hear anything. Since the painter was unconscious, when the lord arrived, the latter truly believes that his companion saw and heard nothing. Thus Baek Na-Kyum has no memory. He knows nothing, hence he can not remember a thing: (chapter 105) With such a contrast, the manhwalovers can detect the link between ignorance and absence of memories. To conclude, in both versions, the main lead is “lying” out of ignorance. This is the positive version of “ignorance is a blessing”. Hence the noona thinks herself safe.

But like I have already pointed out in the previous analysis, the painter was present, when she revealed her complicity. (Chapter 99) It was clear that her brother would meet the noble, as their meeting didn’t surprise her. She was more upset that Baek Na-Kyum was unconscious. (chapter 99) However, her question „What’s wrong with Na-Kyum?“ divulges her hypocrisy and acting. How could she not realize that her sibling had been beaten? (Chapter 99) His head was bleeding, and the black guards were carrying sticks. It was clear that his state was not caused by an illness. To conclude, the calling “lord Jihwa” is the proof of her complicity, though in front of Yoon Seungho it serves as an excuse to portray herself as a victim. (chapter 105) Thus I deduce that Heena thinks, the painter could not witness her acting in front of the scholar’s house, for his head was turned around and he was not moving. She feels secure concerning that night, while I am expecting the opposite. Nonetheless, her past behavior in the kisaeng house represents a source of danger for her. That’s the reason why she has to hide the “attempted murder” from her brother. The moment Heena mentions that she has been hurt, the painter won’t believe her. Why? It is because in the kisaeng house, he has not forgotten her words: (chapter 97) Even if she was “fooled”, the artist can only reproach her stupidity. Remember her harsh words, she had called him stupid: (chapter 97) She had helped Min, and she can not claim ignorance. As you can see, Yoon Seungho was encouraged to hide the “attempted murder” from Baek Na-Kyum for selfish reasons. Therefore it is no coincidence that when the lord visited Heena, he made sure that his lover wouldn‘t see Heena in bed. (Chapter 105) The painter was kept in the dark about her “failed assassination”. It was, as if this had never happened. Yoon Seungho was convinced that if Baek Na-Kyum heard about this, he would feel guilty. Indirectly, he was blamed for her injuries. On the other hand, this decision has huge repercussions. It was, as if Yoon Seungho was erasing the traces of the attempted murder against Heena. It was, as if it had never taken place, which is correct, for it had been a subterfuge. Hence later she can not claim that she has been a victim of the nobles’ brutality.

Finally, I would like to point out that the head-kisaeng was acting as a poor victim in front of Yoon Seungho. Imagine that a month has already passed, but she is still in bed, (chapter 105) though she was not beaten, slapped and punched like her brother. Don’t you find it weird that she remains in bed, though she can still walk? (chapter 105) She has now the perfect excuse to avoid nobles. She has been hurt, hence she can not work. The lord never questioned her attitude, for he wished himself that the painter would take a rest and remain in bed. (Chapter 104) This explicates why later the lord was hugging his lover under the cover. (Chapter 104) Hence I conclude that Heena must have thought the same way about Yoon Seungho. „Thank god, he didn’t see or hear a thing about that awful matter“. He has no idea about her altercations with her brother in the kisaeng house. It is important, because our beloved seme has the impression that the noona has her brother’s best interests at heart, but actually he is wrong. In my opinion, the relationship between Heena and his lover serves as a mirror to his relationship with Yoon Seungwon. So far, the young noble doesn’t suspect his brother to have betrayed him. Note that he blames his father more than his younger sibling.

2. Memory illusions

While reading episode 105, we discovered how Heena was saved. (chapter 105) Yet, this incident was presented as Yoon Seungho’s memory. This panel could be used as an evidence that my theory, Heena was present next to the shaman’s shrine during the bloodbath, was wrong. Nonetheless, this image didn’t make me change my mind. Why? I paid attention to details and judged this rescue as “fake” again. The servants had a drop of sweat on their face, the symbol for deception. Secondly, the kisaeng was wet, while the staff’s clothes weren’t damp. How did they save her then? Besides, where are the foot prints? Moreover, where was the head cover? (chapter 99) Finally, her hands and feet were not tied. So where did the items go? Since we saw her “execution”, we are the witnesses, and as such we know the truth about that “awful matter”, but it is not the case for the lord. This image contains so many errors, hence it can not reflect reality.

This observation led me to the following question: when did the rescue happen exactly? Besides, how could the lord have seen her, when he could barely leave the painter’s side? He spent the whole night with the painter. (chapter 103) Hence he could have never been outside the mansion. That’s how I realized that the author was presenting us a false memory. This means that the manhwalovers are facing an implanted memory. But how could this happen? First, false memory is quite normal and is often of no consequence. But a false memory relayed during criminal testimony might lead to the conviction of an innocent person. As the manhwalovers can detect, it represents a serious problem.

In fact, everyone is prone to false memory distortions, but people with mental illness are more susceptible to “memory illusion”. It is the same for persons who have issues to differentiate between reality and fiction. Since Yoon Seungho is suffering from PTSD and often questions his sense of reality, (chapter 58), it makes him particularly vulnerable to false memories.

But how is it possible to implant fake memories? Let’s not forget that memory is working with associations, as the former is a network of cells. Thus the connections between these cells can been severed. And the moment the cells are reconnected, the brain is trying to fill the blanks. And that’s how false memories can arise. But there exist more factors.

First, it is related to inaccurate perception.

“Sometimes we see things that aren’t there and miss obvious things that are right in front of us.” Quoted from

We have the perfect example in episode 105. Because of the butler’s following testimony (chapter 104), the lord and even the readers imagined to see medicine in the white bowl! (chapter 105) Besides, the author had always connected the drug with the tray. (chapter 23) As you can see, the readers interpreted this scene due to associations. Nonetheless, like mentioned in the previous analysis, the different color and the traces on the edge were the evidences that it was ink. (chapter 36) Besides, Heena was in bed indicating that she was still weak. The circumstances led people to have a different perception of “verity”!! Only through the mind’s eye, the manhwalovers can detect that this scene was staged.

Then the other cause is interference. This signifies that as soon as new information appears, it can affect old memories or the reverse. Experience, prejudice and knowledge have an influence on memories.

“Our minds try to fill in the missing spaces, often using current knowledge as well as beliefs or expectations.” Quoted from

And this aspect is visible in the lord’s memory either. (chapter 105) Observe that the servant on the right is acting like Yoon Seungho: (chapter 103) The protagonist projected his own thoughts and emotions onto one servant: shock! (chapter 105) Secondly, the kisaeng has the same body posture than the painter after the first abduction. (chapter 61) This was interference by excellence. Besides, emotions can affect your memories. Since the lord was so under shock after witnessing the painter’s unconsciousness, it is not surprising that he imagined to have witnessed this scene. At the same time, when he left the shrine in trance, he could have overlooked the presence of a third person… similar to Lee Jihwa next to the shed. That’s how he doesn’t recall anything from that night except his crime. He didn’t see and hear the person by his side. Where is the sword? Where did he get the hanbok from?

“Researchers have found that people tend to be more likely to remember events connected to strong emotions, but that the details of such memories are often suspect. Retelling important events can also lead to a false belief in the accuracy of the memory.” Quoted from

And now, you have the explanation why the lord is blaming his father the entire time and no one else. Finally, I would like to remind the readers that the main lead had tried to commit suicide during that night. Thus he went to the pound. (chapter 102) Therefore it is not astonishing that he imagined a similar scenery.

Another cause for false memory is misinformation. And we have the perfect illustration in chapter 1: (chapter 1) Baek Na-Kyum thought to have seen “Yoon Seungho” as huge sodomite, yet he only connected the name to the face after meeting the lord for the first time. (chapter 1) This shows that the artist had only heard his name without seeing his face before. This explicates why the main lead’s gaze and facial expressions were similar (chapter 1) (chapter 1)

As you can see, Byeonduck left many clues for this interpretation: the noona’s rescue was fake, for it was a false memory. Finally, since the lord was present, when the servants had “discovered” Baek Na-Kyum, the negative reflection would be that he was not gone himself there. Finally, we have the confession from Yoon Seungho, he never saved her. Indirectly, he was admitting that he had not assisted them. (chapter 105)

As you can see, this image was the result of a combination of different events the lord had experienced himself. Hence I deduce that this memory was implanted through suggestions by the servant standing on the left side of the picture. The staff had never searched for the painter, hence one of the domestics had asked his master: (chapter 103)

On the other hand, he only narrated the main aspects, and let the lord fill the blanks. That’s how the lord created a false memory which feels so vivid that it seems real. But I have another proof for this theory. In the previous episode, the lord had tried to implant a false memory into the painter: (chapter 104) My avid readers can certainly recall the rule I had detected: each chapter will be reflected in the next!

But since Yoon Seungho was implanted a false memory, this signifies that it is the same for Baek Na-Kyum too! 😲 One detail caught my attention, the noona’s comment. She had detected that the painter used to feel anxious around Jung In-Hun. (chapter 105) How is it possible? Especially, when the painter said this: (chapter 94) Furthermore, the painter is associating the learned sir to the moon and as such the night. (chapter 94) Thus I am now suspecting that this image is a false memory. But I have another reason to think that the painter’s idolization was more the result of “brainwashing” and as such “false memories”.

The same noona had observed that she had not seen her donsaeng weep like that, since he was 5 years old! (chapter 105) How can she date this incident so precisely? The moment I read her testimony, I discovered that in episode 94 the author had never shown us the painter crying! (chapter 94) (chapter 94) (chapter 94) It was, as if the noonas had never been informed about the painter’s suffering and tears. This shows that Heena has been hiding many things from her colleagues. But there is more to it! The manhwaphiles saw the artist’s tears in his childhood. (chapter 68) But here he was much older!! Under this new perspective, I realized that the following image could have been a false memory: (chapter 68) Heena was misremembering that night, and she was misattributing the painter’s tears. In other words, she was confusing two incidents.

Misattribution: Have you ever mixed up the details of one story with the details of another? For example, while telling a friend about your last vacation you might mistakenly relate an incident that happened on a vacation you took several years ago.” Quoted from

And now, take a closer look to the painter’s tears in episode 105: (chapter 105) It is the same facial expression, though the redness around the eyes is more pronounced. This observation confirms that the noona’s memories in the kisaeng (chapter 68) were not reflecting reality. She idolized the scholar’s attitude, while she was portraying herself as the real victim. Thus I started wondering why the painter must have felt anxious around the learned sir. (chapter 105) One might question the veracity of the kisaeng’s testimony, but so far, I judge her as “innocent”, though she definitely helps Heena to fool the couple. In her mind, it is for her brother’s best interests. But let’s not forget that the teenager Yoon Seungho was exposed to sex in a brutal way (chapter 86), so the painter must have made a similar experience. In my analysis “Baek Na-Kyum’s foot“, I had already doubted the “warmth and happiness” of the scene. For me, the zoom on the painter’s foot was the clue for the painter’s suffering. And this interpretation was confirmed in episode 105. (chapter 105) He had run after his lover in socks. While in “Baek Na-Kyum’s foot”, I thought that this memory was true, I come now to a different signification. It was a false memory in order to hide a crime related to Heena. I would like to outline that in the kisaeng’s comment, we have the notion of “shame” and as such “guilt”. First, I thought of rape, but then it could be much simpler. The painter could have witnessed his noona having sex with the learned sir. But because he was too young, he misjudged the situation… as a virgin, she had to bleed. Because he saw blood, he imagined that the learned sir had hurt Heena. This would explain why the artist was afterwards anxious around the teacher. One might think that this is not terrible. But let’s not forget that as a kisaeng, she can not have sex like that. (chapter 105)

“After 1650 some kisaeng were assigned to a specific government office; these were called gwan-gi, and though officeholders were strictly forbidden from having sex with them, in practice they were usually expected and often forced to provide sex to these bureaucrats” Quoted from

Besides, I doubt that the learned sir paid her for her services, hence according to regulations, the couple had committed a wrongdoing. Under this new perspective, it becomes comprehensible why Byeonduck let Heena witness their love session. (chapter 96) A similar situation had happened in the past.But because of her brother’s reaction, his huge tears, she got scared. (chapter 68) Hence my theory is that this image comes from that day, but she repressed it. Due to her guilty conscience and fears, she developed genophobia. Under this new light, it becomes comprehensible why later Heena caused trouble to Yoon Seungho in the kisaeng house. Her loss of virginity could have been detected. Finally, it explains why the kisaeng spoke about “fleeting and trivial emotions” (chapter 68) Through suggestions, she had been able to convince her brother that the learned sir was a nice person. This explicates why the caresses and hugs were used to silence the artist. By repeating to her brother, he liked Jung In-Hun, he came to develop such feelings. The kisaeng’s statement implies that the admiration for the teacher was not constant. (chapter 105) Her words represent a contradiction to Heena’s statement. (chapter 46) A change of heart versus “eternity”. This shows that the painter’s decision to go to the learned sir’s house was never his choice. He had simply followed Heena’s suggestion. She was definitely distorting his past. Furthermore I detected a strong connection between love and memory. (chapter 94) If it is a loved one, then it can only be a good memory. Therefore it is not surprising that by saying constantly saying that the painter likes the scholar, he is repressing the bad memories with the scholar (the beating in episode 34, the betrayal in chapter 29, his words in the library and his reproach about his job). So far, he only mentioned one negative incident.

But why did Byeonduck use false memories in her story? It is to make Yoon Seungho remember his true memories, which were repressed. However, in psychology, repressed memories are controversial. This explains why the author from „Memory illusions“, Julia Shaw, rejects this idea.

Research showed that the created memories often had the same theme as whatever the clinician was suggesting. So if the clinician suggested sexual abuse, the client would have memories of sexual abuse. If the clinician suggested alien abduction, the client would remember an alien abduction. And if the clinician suggested satanic ritual abuse, then the client would remember satanic ritual abuse. So this was a huge problem. This has led many psychologists and researchers to adamantly oppose any type of therapy that seeks to recover repressed memories, and they also would testify against any recovered memory in court.” Quoted from

Through Baek Na-Kyum’s suffering, the lord is slowly reminded of his own tragedy. This means, his sexual abuse will come to the surface. At the same time, I believe that the painter is the witness of Yoon Seungho’s past suffering, but he has not discovered Yoon Seungho’s connection to the gibang. For me, the painter Baek Na-Kyum embodies true memories, especially since he is no longer under the influence of Heena.

3. The painter’s ignorance

The irony is that though the painter was kept in the dark about the lord’s intentions, he was capable to detect the verity!! How so? He was using his heart and his mind’s eye. First, though the lord’s sudden embrace had caught him by surprise, he had been able to interpret the true meaning: a goodbye (chapter 105) In the original version, this is what the artist thought:

“Earlier..why did it feel like the LAST…”

The last embrace! He had sensed the lord’s despair and heartache. They would no longer see each other. How do I know that the artist was caught by surprise? It is because he never reciprocated the hug. We have to envision a new version of this scene: (chapter 76) So while the painter was following his lover, the latter turned around and hugged him. Afterwards, he asked him to go to his noonas, for he needed to talk to Heena. Moreover, contrary to Yoon Seungho, Baek Na-Kyum paid attention to time. He was not lost in thoughts or had lost the sense of time (chapter 105) Despite being busy and talking to the kisaengs, the artist couldn’t forget his lover. All his attention was still focused on his lover. That’s the reason why he could catch the lord’s departure right on time. This means that Heena’s words didn’t become a reality. He could grasp the situation correctly, though he has no idea about the lord’s intentions. This has nothing to do with chance! It is thanks to the artist’s intelligence and sensibility.

But while he rushed to the lord’s side, he tripped and fell on his hand. (chapter 105) But the latter acted, as if his hand was not wounded. (chapter 105) He ignored his physical pain and heartache. (chapter 105) This is important, because the stumbling symbolizes the intervention of the gods… We have the perfect example at the end of season 3. The lord fell on his knees in front of the scholar’s house, hence there is a hand print on the snow. (chapter 100) That’s how he refused to view Lee Jihwa as the murderer of his lover, Baek Na-Kyum”. YES, the falling is the real manifestation of CHANCE! How so? I would like the manhwaphiles to keep in mind that chance is the antonym of trick and scheme! The latter are connected to plan and organization. Thus I come to the conclusion that the noble will decide to go to the doctor’s office in order to treat his lover’s hand. (chapter 105) Let’s not forget that Yoon Seungho treasures the artist’s hands so much. Besides, they are wearing the same scarfs than in episode 74. But this is something that the schemers are not expecting. After the start of season 4, I got aware that Yoon Seungho never saw the doctor clearly. When the main lead was brought there, (chapter 57) he was feverish so that he couldn’t pay attention to the physician. Besides, the man never remained by his side. Finally, in episode 74, the man never left the office!! (chapter 74) I conclude that Yoon Seungho never saw the physician for commoners! Besides, I doubt that he remembers him from his childhood. But this is not the same, when Baek Na-Kyum was ill. He met the other doctor twice. (chapter 33) (chapter 103) On the other hand, the artist assumes that the man in the office is Yoon Seungho’s doctor!! He heard his confession: (chapter 57) There exist two physicians in the city at least. That’s how a part of the truth will come to the surface! And who had fetched the doctor? (chapter 103) The staff… I would like to outline that in this panel, Kim was no longer seen next to the couple. (chapter 105), though he was still present here. (chapter 105) So where did he vanish? Probably to the mansion, for he had to warn the domestics that the artist would be returning! But if he left the couple behind, this means that he can’t witness what Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum will do next. And if they don’t go to the doctor, there is no ambiguity that the main lead will send for the doctor again. But according to me, the man disappeared. (chapter 103) To conclude, I am expecting that Yoon Seungho will make a huge discovery in the next episode… just like the painter did in the gibang.

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Painter Of The Night/ Doctor Frost: Bad decisions ❌⭕

Please support the authors by reading the manhwas on the official websites. This is where you can read the manhwa. 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: I am also using doctor Frost as reference again.  

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Many manhwalovers were heartbroken, when they witness how the painter ran after Yoon Seungho in order to remain by his side. (chapter 105) Imagine that despite his rush, he was clear-minded enough to take the yellow scarf, a present that the noble had just bought him before. 😢 The item had more value than the mituri (shoes). Thus he was running in socks. His gesture displayed how much the lord means to the painter. He cherishes everything the lord does for him. At the same time, it indicates his heartache. He was so desperate and scared, for he felt that he was about to get abandoned one more time. (chapter 105) According to my follower @katamins, in the Korean version, this is what Baek Na-Kyum yells:

“My lord, let’s go together…you left me behind…let’s go toge-..

One might argue that the meaning is the same, yet in the Korean version, the artist is emphasizing the “we” by employing the expressions “us” (let’s = let us) and “together”. He considers the lord as his family. Moreover, by repeating the same sentence, (chapter 105) it works like a spell or a prayer. The artist is clinching onto this phrase hoping that the noble is remembering his promise. The irony is that the low-born was smiling like a fool, (chapter 105) (chapter 105) masking his anxieties and huge pain… out of fear that Yoon Seungho would still reject him. He acted, as if nothing had happened: he had not hurt his hand, and the lord had done nothing wrong. The smile became the symbol of his agony which reminds us of Yoon Seungho’s. (chapter 83)

1. Smiling like a fool

As you can sense, this scene was a reflection from episode 85. (chapter 85) This means that Baek Na-Kyum was put in the same situation than his lover who wished to keep the artist by his side, but feared to open up to him out of self-hatred and guilt. The painter could get burdened or horrified by his revelations. Hence the painter’s reaction at the end mirrors the yangban’s in the study. Both were or are pleading the partner to stay by their side,. (chapter 85) (chapter 105) Nevertheless, their behavior diverges so much. The aristocrat couldn’t raise his voice or become violent by using his hand, because he could scare the artist and as such break his previous promise. Finally, by destroying the music box, he had already witnessed that he had pushed his lover further away. (chapter 85) At the same time, since he had been taught that no noble should lower himself in front of commoners, it is normal that he couldn’t beg Baek Na-Kyum on his knees. To sum up, the noble had to restrain himself extremely, his face and words were the only way to show his emotions and despair. And the artist sensed it, though the lord was not weeping. The proof is that when the father appeared, the artist changed his mind. He was no longer willing to leave, in fact he chose to look for his lover. (chapter 87) This shows that through communication, the lord had been able to affect the painter‘s mind and heart. On the other hand, we shouldn’t underestimate the lord’s flashback and Na-Kyum’s conversation with the butler which played a huge part in the artist‘s decision to vow loyalty to Yoon Seungho despite the secret.

And this is the same with the painter. The first visible difference is that the artist leashed out his anger mixed with agony, thus he started punching his partner. (chapter 105) Then I noticed that contrary to his lover, the artist asked the reasons for his decision. (chapter 105) Why did he change his mind? Is he responsible for this? As you can see, the painter came to voice his guilt and the remains of his deeply rooted self-hatred. (chapter 105) He must have committed a wrongdoing, he is responsible for the situation. He feels like a burden, for the lord had to take care of him each night. (chapter 104) They are no longer sharing the same bed, the lord is sitting by his side comforting him, when the young man has a nightmare. Under this new light, it becomes comprehensible that the artist was working in the backyard. (chapter 104) He wished to help, that way he wouldn’t be seen as a spoiled child. He has to justify his presence in the mansion. Who is he exactly that he is sleeping in the lord’s bed? I am suspecting that there is a rumor circulating within the propriety, a new version of this scene: (chapter 38) which I will explain more in details below. Thus the artist is making sure to cause no trouble to Yoon Seungho and the staff, especially the maids. Hence he folds the cover and clean the bedroom. (chapter 104) Then he washes clothes. He makes sure that he is no burden to anyone. Yet, my impression is that the staff is taking advantage of the artist’s goodness. That’s how they fuel his guilt and shame.

2. Ignorance and secrets

The irony is that the main lead was keeping the artist in the dark about his crime for this exact reason: GUILT. He didn’t desire him to feel responsible. (chapter 104) This intention was again verbalized in the gibang. (chapter 105) In the Korean version, this is what Heena says:

Heena: “So Nakyum doesn’t know a thing? Thank god he didn’t see nor hear a thing about that awful matter”

The painter is left in the dark about the massacre in the shaman’s shrine. The kisaeng and the noble are both following the principle from Kim: Ignorance is a blessing. They imagine that by choosing secrecy, they are able to protect the artist. But the silence and secrecy are the exact reasons why Baek Na-Kyum feels like a burden! He was not allowed to talk about the circumstances of his misery. (chapter 104) He was told not to question what he had heard… he should simply consider everything like a nightmare. However, this method is actually wrong.

“Keeping secrets limits responsiveness by preventing people from acting naturally and sharing freely. […] People who have studied the psychology of secrecy explain that secrets create “motivational conflict,” where the goal to avoid the social costs of the information being revealed conflicts with the goal to connect with others and maintain intimacy by sharing the information. Because keeping secrets can undermine social relationships, secrecy can lead to isolation and feelings of loneliness in extreme cases. Holding secrets also takes energy. It’s tiring, and sometimes impossible, to keep a secret. The exercise of will and vigilance in being careful with what one says uses emotional and cognitive resources and can leave a residue of negative feelings, like guilt.” Quoted from

Under this new perspective, it explains why Kim aged so much within 10 months!! (chapter 07) (chapter 104) Not only he knows about the lord’s traumatic past, but it is the same for the painter. In addition, we have another explanation for Yoon Seungho’s insomnia and dissociative state. (chapter 57) Not only the latter was turned into the scapegoat for the downfall of the Yoons, but also he was not allowed to reveal the incident, the so-called treason. Why? It is because if he had spoken, the truth would have come to the surface. He was simply a victim. And now, the schemers and accomplices are repeating the same MO. Who suggested to Yoon Seungho to say this to his lover? (chapter 104) Naturally, Kim, because he is now the only one in the mansion who knows his past. Besides, why do you think that the lord’s past is coming to the surface as a nightmare? It is because he was incited to repress everything. But since the painter is going through the same experiences, this is not surprising that the noble’s memory is triggered and the past emerges again.

Thus when I saw this image (chapter 105), I couldn’t restrain myself thinking of the lord and his past martyrdom. Keep in your mind that the artist share the same destiny with his lover. This means that a similar scene must have occurred in his youth: (chapter 27) Put yourself in the young man’s shoes. You suddenly witness how the whole family is moving houses and leaving you behind! This must have been terrible for Yoon Seungho. One might argue that Kim stayed by his side, so he was not alone. But it is false for 2 reasons. The white bearded servant had been working in the mansion (chapter 27), when the other domestics left the propriety. This was his memory. Besides, like the servant confessed to Jung In-Hun, a huge part of the staff got replaced. This means that the lord was suddenly surrounded by people he didn’t know. Because my theory is that the young man was treated as a male kisaeng, this signifies that the new staff could never view the main lead as a noble. Besides, despite the betrayal, the elder master and Yoon Seungwon were his real family. Finally, Yoon Seungho had no saying in this, and I can imagine that the reason for this decision was not explained immediately. This must have been a huge blow for him as well. He must have felt lost and homeless. The result was that from that moment on, he became more dependent on the butler. And we have to question ourselves what the butler did with this huge responsibility, when the elder master moved to the second house.

3. Ignorance and rumors

The lord and Heena assume that the painter has been able to repress this terrible night, and he knows nothing about the lord’s crime. But the moment whispers reach the painter’s ears, he can only feel terrible. (chapter 104) He is treated like a noble, while his lover is acting like a servant. Besides, is it true that the painter knows nothing? Let’s not forget that in the trailer, the manhwalovers discover the existence of a rumor circulating. But who is spreading the rumor and where? Since this phrase appears in connection with the staff (maids and servants) in the courtyard, I come to the conclusion that the authors of this gossip are in the domain. “Fellows” indicate that they are speaking among themselves. But I have two more clues proving that the traitors are the domestics. First, observe how they call the protagonist: Young Master Yoon. So far, people in town only calls the protagonist lord Yoon (chapter 45) (chapter 45) or lord Yoon Seungho (chapter 39) or my lord. (chapter 76) Only the staff addresses him as “young master”. (chapter 103) (chapter 103), and this since season 3. This coincides with the meddling of the Yoons. The servants treat him, as if he was not an adult, no real lord. But they are wrong, because he is wearing the topknot with the gat. Hence he is a lord. Finally, only people close to the couple could know about the painter’s tragedy. , because in the village and town, there exists another gossip: (chapter 104) Thus I conclude that the gossip from the trailer is spread among the staff on purpose. They wished Baek Na-Kyum to hear it so that he will feel responsible, especially after hearing this. He is responsible for the lord’s lunacy. Under this new perspective, it explains why the painter is leaving the bed and working. He wishes to prove the words wrong. On the other hand, I think that Yoon Seungho also heard a grapevine in the domain, but a different one: (trailer). “He has many enemies”. How did I come to this idea? It is because he is addressed as Yoon Seungho! By underlining the painter as his weakness, the author of this rumor wishes to separate the couple. If he were to place the painter elsewhere, not only the latter would no longer be targeted, but also the lord would have no longer any weakness. Since there is always a reflection within the same chapter, I conclude that a second grapevine was spread in episode 104. This happened, while the lord was away. Thus the painter smiled like a “fool”, when he saw the lord: (chapter 104) As you can imagine, for me the maids were the perpetrators, a new version of episode 79 (here, the woman implied that the artist was responsible for Yoon Seungho’s insomnia, thus the painter has a drop of sweat on his face, a sign for shame) and chapter 98 . To conclude, I don’t believe that the artist is ignorant. Besides, it is possible that he saw the trace of blood on his lover’s face, then remember what the servants told their master in the courtyard: (chapter 103) Finally, the staff has every reason to get rid of the artist, for he is the witness of their wrongdoings. They definitely played a major role in the “prank”. They didn’t learn their lesson.

But let’s return our attention to the comparison between 85 and 105. Both are also a reflection of episode 29, the scholar’s betrayal. The latter brought back the painter for his own selfish interests. (chapter 29) This time, the one smiling like a fool (chapter 29) was Jung In-Hun who acted, as if he knew nothing and had seen nothing. (chapter 29) However, I have already pointed out that he was present, when the rape took place, for he knew where Yoon Seungho would meet the artist: the pavilion. And what have all these episodes in common? The first thought would be to say: abandonment and betrayal. The painter in front of the gibang felt “betrayed” and abandoned, but what shocked the lord so much was when the artist started blaming himself: (chapter 105) He never expected this from his lover, as he desired to get the exact opposite. As you can see, the prayer “let’s go home” didn’t work, but the self-blaming had a much stronger effect. On the other hand, what made the lord change his mind was the reminder from the painter: their mutual love confession. (chapter 105) We have to imagine that the painter wanted to say that he regretted to have opened his heart to the protagonist. Thus he said this: (chapter 105) “I had known, I would have never confessed” Nonetheless, he never finished his phrase, for in reality, he had no regret!! He was sure that he had made the right decision. It is because he had pondered a long time about this. He had observed his lover. That’s the reason why he mentioned their mutual love confession and as such their promise to stay together. And this brings me to the next observation. All these scenes have another common denominator: BAD DECISIONS!! The lord had made the wrong decision to entrust the painter to the kisaengs. Thus he came to regret this. He had made his lover cry, and even wounded him, though he desired to do the opposite. Therefore it is not surprising that he apologized to his lover. (chapter 105) This shows that the painter is showing him what true love and loyalty are. Moreover, he is teaching to make good decisions.

But what is a good decision?

4. Good decision versus bad decision

I have to admit that the trigger for this essay was the new chapter from my beloved manhwa “Doctor Frost”. After reading the psychologist’s statement (chapter 246), I realized why Yoon Seungho suffered so much. Self-made decision implies a conscious choice. It is made deliberately and thoughtfully, considers and includes all relevant factors, is consistent with the individual’s philosophy and values. As you can see, it implies knowledge. This definition exposes that making a choice for the sake of another person without his consent or knowledge can never be a good decision. One might argue about this, because children are too young to make decisions. In Doctor Frost, this man (Doctor Frost 246) decided to support a terror attack, and justified this by saying that this was for his daughter’s sake. But like the counterpart pointed out, he questioned his decision. Was it truly his choice, or was he simply following the leader’s suggestion? As you can see, the daughter was used as an excuse, it was never for her sake. This shows that children are the exception, besides they are often raised by two parents. Thus they are making deliberations together. But like the author revealed in Twitter, Yoon Seungho’s mother hated her husband so much that she neglected her eldest son. The patriarch made decisions on his own, but observe that it was always for the Yoons’ sake. This means that the father never took his son’s well-being into consideration, he never asked him about his opinion. He imposed his will, but he listened to others, like we could see in different occasions. (chapter 57) He fed his son with the drug prescribed by the physician, though the latter stated that he had no idea about the illness. Then he listened to father Lee’s complains and reproaches. He never questioned the intentions behind his actions and words. (chapter 82) Here, the red-haired bearded man was encouraging the elder master Yoon to return to the mansion and claim his rights. Finally, the young master admitted this to the messenger: (chapter 80) If someone stroke his ego, he would follow their advice and never doubt their words.

Under this perspective, it becomes comprehensible why Yoon Seungho became the bird of misfortune. He became the scapegoat, for neither Kim nor Yoon Chang-Hyeon accepted to take their responsibility. They had made this decision for Yoon Seungho’s sake!! (chapter 77) Since it backfired, then the protagonist was responsible for everything. And this is what Kim has always been preaching in season 1, 2 and 3: it was the best for Yoon Seungho, or Baek Na-Kyum etc. Nonetheless, since he let others make the decision, he was able to escape “responsibility”, thus the elder master Yoon was blamed for everything. (chapter 86)

The butler’s interventions are based like this: It was for the painter’s sake, or for the lord’s sake, or for the elder master’s sake… One might argue that the valet questioned the lord’s decision to send the painter back to the gibang. (chapter 104) But he simply employed reverse psychology.

Reverse psychology is a manipulation technique that involves getting people to do something by prompting them to do the opposite. Reverse psychology can take various forms, such as forbidding the target behavior, questioning the person’s ability to perform the target behavior, and encouraging the opposite of the target behavior.” Quoted from

And this is what father Lee was doing too, when he visited Yoon Chang-Hyeon. Besides, we shouldn’t forget the power of the grapevines in the mansion. To conclude, making decisions for the sake of others can never be a good decision!! Therefore it becomes understandable why the painter’s request in the study was a bad choice in the end. (Chapter 85) Yoon Seungho was coerced to open up. If he did not, he wouldn’t be forgiven. Naturally, the painter meant it well, yet the main lead was pressured to reveal his „bad action“. The main lead feared his negative judgement and rejection. We could say that the artist had made this request for the lord’s sake, however this was not a conscious and long deliberated decision. And now, you comprehend why the main leads suffered both so much!! Yoon Seungho’s mother neglected her eldest son, but she kept her distance from her husband. They never talked to each other, and as such never made decisions together. And it was the same for the painter. The kisaeng Heena was the one who made the decision without the noonas’ consent and her brother‘s opinion.

5. Heena‘s bad decisions

Secondly, making decisions because you were manipulated, can not be considered a self-made decision. And what did Heena do? She made decisions for Baek Na-Kyum, but she never asked for her brother’s opinion or her colleagues. She made her decision based on her impressions and belief! (chapter46) Even in season 4, she has not changed her mind-set entirely. (chapter 105) She is still viewing the painter’s decision as a bad choice. But she is simply wrong, for the painter listened to her advice and after deliberations, he chose to open his heart. His confession was not made in the heat of the moment. (chapter 62) The lord’s vision (chapter 62) became a reality (chapter 105), though he never expected to be like that: a gaze full of pain and anxiety. To conclude, this night in the barn embodies “bad decisions”. Everything the lord did was under the influence of his unconscious. His abandonment issues clouded his judgement. Yet, despite everything, the noble made one good decision during that fateful night: he chose to never let the artist go!! (chapter 63) Because the painter has always been betrayed and abandoned himself too, such words could only move the artist. There was someone willing to be by his side and to give him a home. Therefore it is no coincidence that the artist brought up these words from that night. (chapter 105) They left a deep impression on Baek Na-Kyum.

But let’s return our attention to the head-kisaeng. (chapter 105) Note that she employed the expression “believe”. This is no coincidence, for it displays her narrow-mindedness. Finally, note that in episode 97, her conversation with her brother was truly a bad choice. She lied to Baek Na-Kyum, she was extremely stressed, scared and angry. (chapter 97) And why did she act like that? She justified that it was for the painter’s sake, and she knew more than her brother. The reality was that it was for her own sake. She was definitely cornered, for she feared repercussions. Moreover, she pushed her brother to follow her advice. And now look at what the noona said in front of Yoon Seungho:

Heena: “So Nakyum doesn’t know a thing? Thank god he didn’t see nor hear a thing about that awful matter”

She is glad that her brother didn’t witness her conversation with Min (chapter 99) and her “fake death”, but as you already know, I think, he heard her during that night. Note that the painter didn’t meet his noona Heena during that day. Since Heena and the staff played tricks so that Baek Na-Kyum ended up going to the scholar’s house, it is not surprising why the staff is putting the whole blame on the painter. However, who is responsible for this? Naturally, the staff, Kim and Heena. The latter made bad choices blinded by her arrogance and prejudices. Thus I deduce that Yoon Seungho learned a good lesson in front of the gibang. He should never make a decision without consulting his partner. (chapter 105) From my point of view, both need to learn to make decisions TOGETHER!! But in order to do so, the two main leads need to listen to each other and communicate. And this is what truly happened in episode 105. The young noble discovered the painter’s low self-esteem and his guilt. That’s the reason why I believe that Yoon Seungho will decide to talk about the scholar. The lord suspects the learned sir, for he thinks that he is still alive. (chapter 105) This signifies that the noble will decide not to follow the noona’s advice: (chapter 105) But by learning about the learned sir’s past, the protagonist will realize that he only knew a side about Jung In-Hun.

On the other hand, since the head-kisaeng agreed (chapter 105) with the noona’s statement, the painter looks happy with Yoon Seungho despite the tears, it looks like the noona is slowly coming to terms with her brother’s relationship. But I have to admit that I believe that her “decision” is just short-lived. First, in season 2, the noona had accepted to let her brother stay at the Yoons’ (chapter 69) But then she had changed her mind after hearing the menace from the servant. However, I have three other reasons to expect a change of heart from the head-kisaeng. First, Heena is the younger reflection of the butler. The manhwaphiles shouldn’t forget that the valet had almost come to terms with the painter’s presence (chapter 65), but the ruckus caused by the kisaeng had provoked a change of heart in the valet. Then, the lord had made the following condition to the kisaeng: (chapter 105) The lord is keeping his lover by his side, as long as nothing happens to him. So if he gets into trouble… she could achieve her goal, the painter is returned to her. But the most important clue is for me the bowl! (chapter 105) While many jumped to the conclusion that this was the medicine sent by the physician, I had a totally different impression. For me, this bowl was used to write a letter!! First, the color is different from the normal “medicine”. (chapter 23) Most of them look dark brown and not black. (chapter 36) (chapter 77) Besides, it never leaves traces on the edge. (chapter 36) The points on the border are the traces left by the brush. She wrote a letter. And I have another evidence for this: (chapter 36) The painter used white bowls while painting. On the other hand, the lord wrote a letter during that time. As you can see, in episode 36, we have the combination of painting, seduction (touching) and medicine… exactly like in episode 105. The artist tried to paint a lucky charm, a tiger, but he didn’t finish it. He got interrupted… which is very similar than in chapter 36. So the letter should represent another common denominator.

This means that Heena made the decision to write a letter before meeting Yoon Seungho and witnessing their interaction in front of the gibang. Finally, let’s not forget that the kisaeng was always brought up in connection with letters:

  • Chapter 68:
  • Chapter 69:
  • Chapter 91:
  • Chapter 97:

Naturally, I can not guarantee 100% this theory… besides, I can not tell the content and the recipient of this message. And if this theory is correct, the head-kisaeng did something which will have repercussions about her „decision“: let the painter live with Yoon Seungho. This means that she will be forced to question her past decision. Was it made deliberately and thoughtfully, did she consider and include all relevant factors, or did she act based on her instincts? In my eyes, Heena has always made such decisions. Every choice was based on hunch, but more precisely influenced by her prejudices and fears. Thus she is projecting her MO (chapter 105) onto Yoon Seungho. Will she come to regret her action or not? One thing is sure, the painter accepted the sincere apology from his lover. How could he not forgive him after calling „Nakyumah“ and embracing him! (Chapter 105) (chapter 105) Both left the gibang together, while the artist was removing his tears. And this leads me to the final observation.

By forcing the painter to remain silent about the last incident, the schemers and accomplices are not realizing that their actions will bring light to Yoon Seungho‘s suffering and its origins. In other words, by burying one truth, they are digging another grave… the secrets from the first past!! (Chapter 76) By making the same decisions, it is not surprising that the same deed can never succeed. It was not a real self-made decision. They simply followed a pattern.

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 puzzle with the paper 📜 📨 (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa. 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: 

It would be great if you could make some donations/sponsoring:  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.

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 secret behind curry🍛 , apple 🍏and butter 🧈 (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa. 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: 

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You are probably wondering about the meaning behind this title, for until now, food never played a role in the story. However, all these words have another common denominator. 😮 The trigger for this essay started, when I discovered the expression “brown-noser” while reading another manhwa. The definition of “brown-noser/brown-nosing” are the following:

Brown-noser: a person who tries to please (esp. one’s boss) so much that their nose turns brown from kissing their ass. Quoted from

Brown-nosing: If you accuse someone of brown-nosing, you are saying in a rather offensive way that they are agreeing with someone important in order to get their support. Quote from

1. Brown-nosing and boot licking

This means that the person flatters or humors somebody in an obsequious manner for personal gain. Striking is that if you look for synonyms, this is what you find

That’s how I discovered why Yoon Seungho started licking Baek Na-Kyum’s ass. In the essay “Painful departures”, I had written that the story was constructed like a kaleidoscope, thus it contained so many reflections. Each incident or notion will be reflected in each season twice and within the same chapter, just like there will be an allusion in the previous or next episode. One might say that in season 1, the manhwaphiles never saw the main lead licking the painter’s ass. So it looked like my interpretation was wrong. However, this is again just an deception. Why? It is because the lord was taking these expressions literally. 😂

The verb “brown-nose” has for synonyms “curry favor”, “apple-polish”, “suck up to”, “get on the right side of”, “to kiss someone’s feet” and “butter up”! Under this new light, the manhwalovers can grasp the other common denominator between the “curry, apple and butter”. They are referring to hypocrisy, power and selfishness. However, in Painter Of The Night, these idioms get a totally new meaning. Yoon Seungho has long internalized that the exchange of favors is based on sex!! He had to do it personally. That’s the reason why he is taking the expressions literally and the painter is responding the same way. Here he is seen as a back-scratcher: (chapter 89) The lord’s back is covered with marks. Yet, he was not brown-nosing here at all, for he was rejecting the lord’s advances. And now, it is time to take a closer look to season 1.

2. Apple and fellatio

When I read the expression “apple-polisher”, I remembered this scene in the woods: (chapter 23) Baek Na-Kyum was seen holding an apple, here it looked like he was indeed polishing the fruit before eating it. Striking is that during that scene, valet Kim was interrogating him. He was acting, as if he was interested in him. It was, as if he was buttering up to Baek Na-Kyum. The purpose was to gain the artist’s trust so that at the end, he would listen to his advices.(chapter 23) However, the reality was that the valet was actually digging for information, spying on the main lead, so that he could create a new incident. As you can see, there were two apple-polishers in that scene, the painter and the butler. This was the reflection within the same episode. While Baek Na-Kyum was literally polishing the apple, the other was just cajoling Baek Na-Kyum in a figurative way. Yet, the former was not truly sweet-talking to the artist. He gave the impression that he was totally honest. And now, it is important to recall what happened to the painter in the next chapter. Jung In-Hun was kissing the painter’s hands.(chapter 24). He was flattering the painter with the hope that Baek Na-Kyum would spy on his account. But the scholar couldn’t succeed with his request. Why? It is because he only kissed the artist’s hands. He never licked his boot or his ass. We could even say that he did scratch his back, but in the wrong way: (chapter 24) In other words, he could never lower himself in front of the low-born. This was too much, explaining why the scholar failed with his request.

Let’s not forget that in the hallway, Yoon Seungho had made the following request to Baek Na-Kyum. (chapter 27) In exchange for saving Jung In-Hun’s life, Baek Na-Kyum was forced to do a fellatio. We could say that the artist was sucking up to the owner of the mansion. But the fellatio is not just an exchange of favors. It is also associated to forgiveness. At the tailor’s shop, the painter had blushed because of Yoon Seungho, The latter had embarrassed him. Thus the lord made the following suggestion: (Chapter 39) This was his way to apologize, though here he was teasing his lover. These were the principles he had been taught, therefore it is not surprising that he applied them for the painter. And now, you comprehend why in episode 71, Yoon Seungho sucked the painter’s phallus in the bathroom, he was also currying the artist’s favors. His goal was not to be pushed away, to be accepted. (chapter 71) He had wronged the painter so many times, that the blow-job was not enough. Thus he licked his ass in the bedchamber. He was hoping to seek his forgiveness. (chapter 71) It was, as if he was lowering his head, the kowtower. In this episode, the lord was on his knees in front of the painter, and this twice. One in the bathroom (chapter 71) and the other time in the bedchamber. (chapter 71) However, his nose didn’t get brown, as the painter is a pure and innocent person. 😉 That’s how I realized why Baek Na-Kyum was sent to the bathroom. His role was to divert Yoon Seungho’s attention from Kim so that the master would forget to ask for the butler’s punishment. In other words, the valet used the low-born to seek his master’s favors. This shows that Yoon Seungho had been taught that the blow-job and the ass-kissing are the means to obtain forgiveness.

And remember what I mentioned previously, the notion “suck up to or kiss ass” will continue to appear in the next episode. This is no coincidence that the author drew such a panel: (chapter 73) He was licking the painter’s foot so that he could keep thrusting. Don’t forget that during the whole night, he behaved like a servant… the one who was “sucking up to Baek Na-Kyum”. (chapter 72) On the other hand, the latter scratched the lord’s back for the first time during that night. (chapter 72) This was the reflection within the same episode, yet the “back-scratcher” was not doing it for his personal gain at all. We couldn’t say that he was currying favor or buttering up Yoon Seungho. He believed that he was just a servant and nothing more. From the outsider’s perspective, he was treated indeed like a favored servant, though in truth Yoon Seungho viewed him more like his new master and lord.

3. Baek Na-Kyum and Kim’s sucking

Episode 71 with the ass-kissing was the positive reflection of chapter 45.

Striking is that in chapter 45, we have an allusion to the teacher’s pet: (chapter 45) In this scene, the lord was acting like a teacher, and the painter was supposed to do a blow-job in exchange for a favor. But since the painter was heartbroken, he was doing it absent-mindedly. Thus the roles got switched. After the noble licked the painter’s ass, and masturbated him anal, the painter was able to confess his pleasure: (chapter 45) This shows that the lord was slowly “currying favors” to Baek Na-Kyum. And this is no coincidence that Kim brought the ink and brushes to the mansion. (chapter 45) Once again, he was acting, as if he was buttering up to Baek Na-Kyum and indirectly to the host. But the reality was that everything was done for Kim’s interest…. On the other hand, we could say that Yoon Seungho was not really different from his surrogate father, for in that scene, Yoon Seungho was more thinking about himself than the painter’s. Yet, there is a slight nuance, the lord was sensing that the painter was not himself. He was talking to him, so licking the painter’s ass was not just done in order to obtain the painter’s support. His true goal was to be noticed and looked by the painter. He desired to have a true exchange of thoughts. Interesting is that by licking briefly the painter’s ass, he indeed succeeded, Baek Na-Kyum started thinking about him afterwards. The irony is that Yoon Seungho was just applying what he had been taught. That’s how I discovered the other reason why the main lead is not suspecting the butler of treason. Contrary to Yoon Chang-Hyeon or the pedophile, Kim was never seen asking Yoon Seungho for sexual favors: no fellatio or no ass-kissing. But this is just a deception, for we could clearly see that the butler is connected to the sex parties: (chapter 33) (chapter 52) He was the one who separated the couple. Because of his intervention, the painter deserted the mansion and got sick afterwards. Then in chapter 50, he revealed the argument between Baek Na-Kyum and Jung In-Hun. Striking is that in that scene, he was standing on the lord’s left side!! (chapter 50) No wonder that Yoon Seungho got furious. Simultaneously, while Kim was acting, as if he was defending the painter’s interest and as such feeling sorry for the painter, this signifies that he was no longer sucking up to his own master. Therefore, it is not surprising that the lord scolded him. (chapter 50) In fact, he should have “buttered up” his master and not pitied the painter. And now, you comprehend why the main lead misinterpreted Kim’s behavior. In his mind, the valet was actually “apple-polishing” to the painter. He had somehow “witnessed” it in the woods. But he had misjudged the situation, in reality he had caught Kim spying. (chapter 23) Unfortunately, the lord was not perceptive at all.

4. The night of Yoon Seungho’s relapse

And this leads me to the following observation. When Yoon Seungho kissed the painter’s ass in season 3 again, it was not done for personal gain. (chapter 80) He enjoyed seeing the painter’s facial expressions and reaction. He looked so shy and pure. (chapter 80) However, during that night, three people were trying to bootlick someone figuratively speaking: the new version of Deok-Jae, Kim and the messenger. Let’s not forget that before the arrival of the messenger, the painter made the following request to the butler: (chapter 79) One might say that he was currying favor to the butler, when he asked the butler about the music box. But what did Kim do? He brought the item to the bedchamber. (chapter 79) But this is not what the painter had actually requested, since the butler said this “I thought”. He had taken the initiative on his own. In my opinion, the painter had just asked that the music box should be brought back to the study. However, Kim brought the expensive present to the bedchamber for one reason. He expected the arrival of the messenger. We could say that he was “ass-kissing” the painter in order to obtain his trust. Kim definitely imagined that Yoon Seungho was sleeping. As you can see, this scene was the reflection of Yoon Seungho’s action in chapter 80. (chapter 80) While Kim had asked the painter’s to clean his face himself, the lord was cleaning the painter’s ass himself. Or we could say that he was polishing the painter’s apples, for he has an apple-shaped buttock. 😂 This clearly indicates that Kim has never washed Yoon Seungho himself. In other words, while Yoon Seungho was totally selfless here, this was not the case for the valet. And this is no coincidence that right after, the new version of Deok-Jae appeared in front of the door calling his master. He was faking loyalty and dedication. (chapter 80) Here, he was acting, as if he was sucking up to Yoon Seungho, but his gaze betrayed him. In my opinion, he had been deceived by the butler, for the latter expected that the painter would open the door. This situation was reflected within the same chapter. Notice what the messenger said to the young master in the study: (chapter 80) He was implying that his father had to bootlick an official in order to hide the incident. And how did the lord react to this? He not only asked the servant to do him a fellatio, but also made an allusion to the sexual favor: (chapter 80) His father must have kissed someone’s ass. But as you already know, Yoon Chang-HYeon is not someone who will do such a thing himself. And this shows that he has definitely used his son in order to obtain favors in such a way. Yoon Seungho had to do fellatios and let people lick his ass for his father’s sake, as he was a uke in the past. This is not surprising that the messenger received such a beating in the end. (chapter 80) He gave an order to the main lead, he threatened him. But actually, he was just a servant. He was not treating Yoon Seungho correctly. Interesting is that he showed more courtesy and respect to lord Lee than Yoon Seungho. (chapter 82) It was, as if the man was hoping to obtain father Lee’s support either. Another interesting aspect is that when the butler approached the wounded emissary, the former was definitely brown-nosing. (chapter 82), until he heard that the scholar Lee had approached father Yoon. On the other hand, his introduction didn’t fool the courier, for he was aware of Kim’s meddling. (chapter 82) In my opinion, Yoon Chang-Hyeon had followed the butler’s suggestion. Since the painter would always sleep in the study alone, he envisioned that the messenger would suggest to the artist to meet Heena. The man could fake that he had been sent by his noona. He was dressed up for that reason!! Observe that the color of the hanbok is similar to this one: (chapter 94) Thus I had this sudden idea. What if the messenger was receiving his karma for beating the painter in the past? Remember how I had deducted that these two men could have been disguised as nobles!! And this new perception would fit my interpretation. But let’s return to our main topic. The courier refused the obsequious and submissive remarks from the butler. He was no fool, for he knew that because of his “plan”, he had become the biggest victim of Yoon Seungho’s wrath. This explicates why the author never revealed the father’s words, because the manhwaphiles would have discovered the valet’s plan and as such betrayal (chapter 82) This means that if father Lee or Yoon Chang-Hyeon are cornered, they could be forced to “ass-kiss” the king.

Under this new light, it becomes comprehensible why Byeonduck released such panels on Twitter: Baek Na-Kyum is now imitating his lover. He is also licking the lord’s boot/foot. However, contrary to the signification, he is actually making love to his companion. This has nothing to do with selfishness and hypocrisy. We could even say that at the end of season 3, Yoon Seungho had become the teacher’s pet, the yes-man towards Baek Na-Kyum: (chapter 92) He could never refuse his lover’s requests. Thus in the gibang, he encouraged the painter to stay in the gibang. (chapter 93) It was, as if he was seeking the kisaengs’ support. Thus he chose leniency towards these women, though the latter had insulted him. At the same time, he was not hoping to receive any flattery from the noonas. He was the one “sitting on the painter’s right side”. (chapter 93) To conclude, the lord had been “tamed”, he was apple-polishing Baek Na-Kyum, but not in a negative way. It is the positive reflection of Kim who will act behind people’s back, and definitely use sex for his own advantage. We have the perfect example with the 2 sex marathons. He always let the painter suffer in order to cover up his own wrongdoings. But by allowing the main lead to act this way indicates that he was not helping Yoon Seungho. What people thought as assistance was in truth “brown-nosing”.

Under this new light, it becomes comprehensible why Yoon Seungho questioned the painter’s fellatio in the annex. (Chapter 95) In his eyes, the lord didn’t need it, for he was already aroused. Remember in the beginning of the story, Lee Jihwa had to prepare his lover (Chapter 3) Secondly, the painter was in the position not to ask for favors, to suck up to Yoon Seungho. In their relationship, the low-born had the upper hand. Finally, Baek Na-Kyum had done nothing wrong before, so he didn’t have to beg for the main lead’s forgiveness. That’s the reason why the lord was actually rejecting the blow-job!! (Chapter 95) But his teacher taught him this: the fellatio is there for pleasure and sensuality. (Chapter 95) It is the expression of affection and love.

5. The night in the shaman’s house

In my opinion, we should see it as a reflection of Yoon Seungho’s past. Min was also associating sex to favors. (chapter 101) The painter had to do a fellatio to lord Jang in exchange for protection. (chapter 101) The artist was not acting like the teacher’s pet, (chapter 101), hence he needed to receive some lesson. In their eyes, Baek Na-Kyum should have licked their boot, sucked up to them… due to their power and social status. Therefore, it is not astonishing that at the end, they were executed. Why? It is because Min and the others could never “curry Yoon Seungho’s favor”. (chapter 102) Without the painter, the lord had no reason to continue living. Baek Na-Kyum was his source of joy and of strength. Without him, he was powerless. And this leads me to the following observation. Since we have a situation of brown-nosing concerning Black Heart in the shaman’s house, this signifies that we should have a reflection earlier in season 3. And now look at this: (chapter 92) In that scene, Min was indeed “flattering” his ex-sexual partner, while he was rather dismissing the painter. (chapter 92) He was also indirectly currying the lord’s favor. This was the reflection of the night in episode 52 either. However, contrary to season 2, Yoon Seungho had the upper-hand, as the painter had already sided with him. But one might say that this perception of “apple-polishing and buttering up” stands in opposition to my previous statement: sex is like a battle, a fight where there is only one winner. But that one doesn’t exclude the other, since Min had also tried to eliminate Baek Na-Kyum before changing his mind. This truly shows that we had two different philosophies, yet both were evolving around sex. This truly outlines that someone was “consumed by lust” in the end.

6. The Yoons

This means that Yoon Seungho can only discover the butler’s betrayal, when the latter no longer acts, as if he was buttering up to Baek Na-Kyum. But so far, the lord never discovered it. Even when he thought that the artist was dead, Kim gave him the hanbok. This could only reinforce the impression that Kim liked the artist. (chapter 102) On the other hand, Baek Na-Kyum is slowly sensing the valet’s disloyalty towards the aristocrat. (chapter 86) Since the lord could see through Jung In-hun’s true personality, I believe that it is the painter’s duty to grasp the valet’s treason. In my opinion, since he caught Kim having sex with the maid, it is only a matter of time, until he realizes his true personality. In chapter 77, valet Kim had thought that he could rekindle with the owner of the mansion, hence he brought him tea and the medicine. He envisioned that if he acted like a loyal and dedicated servant, he could regain Yoon Seungho’s support. (chapter 77) In other words, he was buttering up to the young master. But observe that in that scene, he never lowered himself in front of the young man. He didn’t go on his knees or he didn’t bow to him either. This attitude exposes the valet’s true personality. He considers himself better than Yoon Seungho and Baek Na-Kyum, refusing to admit any crime or mistake. In that scene, he never said YES! In fact, he kept contradicting his master. (chapter 77) Under this new light, the avid readers can understand why he contacted the patriarch in the end. He knew that Yoon Chang-Hyeon would listen to him, for he had been brown-nosing him for years. And the color brown of his shirt is no coincidence. Observe that when the father visited the mansion, he was wearing brown and red… (chapter 86) He envisioned that his elder son would return him the seat and as such he would become the owner of the family mansion again. Why? It is because of the main lead’s words in the library. His so-called respect towards the father was just fake. That’s the reason why the father imagined that he just needed to show up and he would get the mansion back. However, in reality, he should have sought his son’s support, and as such kiss his ass in order to achieve his goal. But the man has never done it himself. He has always been used to being fawned and ass-kissed that it is not surprising that he barged in the mansion. And this is the same for Yoon Seung-Won. The latter might have sent letters in order to obtain his brother’s support, but we can’t say that he was sucking up to Yoon Seungho. Thus it is no coincidence that at the end, the latter advised his brother to follow the father’s principles. (chapter 37) Here, he was implying that Yoon Seung-Won should do fellatios and other things in exchange for favors.

7. Conclusions

After these observations, I come to the conclusion that the sexual actions are not only reflecting the lord’s brainwashing, but also they are revealing what will happen in season 4. The more the couple will follow these principles (apple-polishing, boot licking, ass-kissing, sucking up, teacher’s pet, yes-man…) in a literal way, the more we will see the negative reflections of these actions in the other characters. The butler and the other antagonists will try to curry favors to the pedophile at the couple’s expense. And now, here is the question. Who will do it, fellatio and other things in exchange for favors? Yoon Chang-Hyeon? Yoon Seung-Won? Kim? Or Heena? As you can imagine, I am inclined to think that this should be Heena. Why? I can not forget the scholar’s words in the library: (chapter 40) Moreover, according to me, she used the young master Seungho and her brother to avoid sex. Furthermore, I would like to point out that when the kisaeng argued with her brother, this is what she said to her brother: (chapter 97) Here, she was referring to favors. Yet, shortly after she proposed this to her brother: (chapter 97) It is clear that the agreement was not selfless. No nobleman would spend money and energy for nothing. The noona was hiding the content of the deal to her brother, the negative reflection from season 1. And now, you comprehend why I am sensing that since her deal was to sell her brother in exchange of favors, her karma should be that she has no other mean than to sell herself in order to survive, as she is now on her own. And if this truly happen, this can only reinforce her resent and hatred towards the couple. But we will see, if Heena is the one “sucking up” in season 4.

Finally I would add that though Baek Na-Kyum kept saying “no no”, deep down he meant “yes, yes” and the perfect example was during the second Wedding Night: (chapter 73). But keep in mind, this is related to the painter’s education. He had been raised not only to hide his homosexuality, but also to reject sexuality as such. Naturally, in reality a no means no and nothing else.

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: Hunted or wanted? 🏹🩸

This is where you can read the manhwa. 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: 

It would be great if you could make some donations/sponsoring:  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.

My avid readers are actually aware that Painter Of The Night is constructed like a kaleidoscope. Thus certain incidents keep occurring twice in each season. However, one might argue that this theory is not true, for the author used two hunts in season 1, yet we had no hunt at all in season 2, and only one in season 3.

  • Chapter 22:
  • Chapter 41:
  • Chapter 83:

1. The hidden chases

As you can imagine, I can refute this point very easily. First of all, in the essay „Words“, I had pointed out that in the bedchamber, the lord was acting like a hunter chasing after his prey. I had made this connection, for the main lead would utilize idioms from the lexical field of the hunt. (Chapter 73) (chapter 73) This is important, because the manhwalovers can sense a connection between sex and hunt. This means that the love session in the bedchamber from season 2 should be perceived as a new version of a hunt. And this link between sex and hunting was also present, when Yoon Seungho and Min were in the woods in chapter 41: (chapter 41) In this scene, it looked like Black Heart was trying to make a move on Yoon Seungho, while in truth Min was more obsessed with the painter. (Chapter 41) The expression „spot“ belongs also to the semantic field of chase.

Secondly, the premeditated murder could be viewed as a new version of the hunt. Yoon Seungho was the first one to bring up these two notions together: (Chapter 11) A murder disguised as an accident, the scholar would have been eaten by a tiger. What caught my attention is that No-Name requested from Deok-Jae that he should make the painter leave the mansion. o (chapter 51) It was, as if the rabbit had been chased away from its burrow or the deer had been forced to leave the woods. That way, he would become an easy target for the hunter and butcher Mumyeong. To conclude, we had two hunts in season 2 as well.

As for season 3, the second chase took place, when the painter vanished. Yoon Seungho had to track down himself Baek Na-Kyum. He was like a hunter searching for his prey, following the clues left by the “witnesses”. (Chapter 99) First, he was rushing, but the moment he received the crucial tip from his childhood friend, he approached the den silently, just like a tiger. That‘s the reason why neither Black Heart nor lord Jang nor lord Park detected his presence. (Chapter 101)

2. Yoon Seungho the hunter

Thus I couldn‘t help myself associating Yoon Seungho to a tiger. In one of my first analyses, I had compared him to an eagle and a phoenix, hence this new association seems to contradict my previous interpretation. However, the readers should keep in their mind that each character has been associated to different animals: Min was either a snake or a crow or a magpie, while Jung In-Hun could be perceived as a snake, a peacock or a chameleon. I have already compared the painter to a deer and a butterfly, so Yoon Seungho should be linked to different animals either: the phoenix and the tiger.

This predator is known to be a solitary night hunter, mainly relying on his sense of sight and hearing rather than on smell when hunting prey. This method is also employed by the main character which was particularly perceptible during the last incident. On the one hand, he listened to the words from his staff, the noonas, Seokdae (chapter 99) and Lee Jihwa (chapter 100), hence he had not the time to question the veracity of their claims or sense their manipulations. On the other hand, he could detect the difference between the blood in front of the scholar’s house and inside the building. (Chapter 100). He was following his instincts. Tigers cautiously stalk their target from the rear in attempt to get as close as possible to their unsuspecting prey. (Chapter 101) And the moment I perceived Yoon Seungho as a tiger, I couldn‘t help myself thinking that the main lead was acting like a mother looking for her lost cub!! 🐯 This would explain why the protagonist showed no mercy at all to the nobles. However, the painter is definitely no tiger. In our story, he was symbolized by the deer, which the lord had stabbed with his sword. (Chapter 22) This was an allusion to the rape. Under this new light, it becomes comprehensible why Baek Na-Kyum feared the lord so much, because he had to face his strength and fury right away. From the beginning, the painter saw his dangerous side. A deer can only perceive the tiger as a natural enemy. We could say that Painter Of The Night is a love story between a tiger and a deer!😉 This means that the lord finally showed his real fangs, when he felt that his curb or treasured deer had been wounded. (chapter 102)

And this thought leads me to the following observation, the way Yoon Seungho hurts its targets. The tiger will attempt to take down its prey with a powerful bite to the neck and/ or throat. Now, look at this: (chapter 41) The pheasant was strangled, just like Yoon Seungho used to grab the painter by the throat (chapter 48) or the chin (chapter 11). The main lead‘s hand has the same form than the bite, though it can not cut the flesh… which the sword can. Thus we saw the lord using the sword: (chapter 22) (chapter 83) (chapter 102) Even in this panel, the sword resembles a lot to the tiger‘s fang: (chapter 102) Another important element is that this predator usually targets large-bodied preys like boar, deer, humans and not rabbit or pheasant. Under this new light, it becomes comprehensible why the main lead went after a boar or the aristocrats in season 3.

“Less than a century ago, tigers and leopards prowled the Korean peninsula and ruled the hours of darkness. Their depredations in the desolate regions were so severe that porters and horse-handlers refused to travel at night ― even in fairly large groups. If they were compelled to travel at night (through the promises of more money or threats of violence), they did so with great caution, brandishing torches, striking gongs, and relying on superstitious beliefs.

According to an old Chinese saying, “The Korean hunts the tiger six months in the year and the tiger hunts the Korean the other six months.” Robert Neff Collection

Quoted from

By comparing all these hunting scenes, I detected the following parallels. The main lead would always do the mercy killing, which stands in opposition to Min or Jung In-Hun. Both disliked dirtying their own hands, it was beneath them to kill the animal themselves. (chapter 22) (chapter 41) We could say that Yoon Seungho was behaving like the tiger, who would always kill his prey in one go. Simultaneously, this reminded me of the status of No-Name, who is according to me a butcher. (chapter 60) The latter belonged to the lowest ranks of Joseon’s society, because killing an animal was a disgraceful job. On the other hand, the butcher No-Name and the tiger Yoon Seungho have something in common: killing is viewed as a necessity. It is either to survive or to end the animal’s suffering or to punish the criminals.

3. Hunting: hobby or work?

That’s how I realized that hunt and murder are similar in this story, for both are mostly presented as an entertainment. Yoon Seungho invited the scholar for a hunt, as it would give the occasion to go to the woods. (Chapter 22). And when Black Heart suggested the artist’s assassination, he always kept laughing, making it sound like a game without any terrible consequence. (Chapter 43) Lee Jihwa would remove a witch, and not a human. (chapter 43) Only Nameless painted it in all its cruelty and brutality. Not only the person would lose his life, but he would lose his identity. (Chapter 60) By removing his eyes and tongue, the victim’s face would change making him impossible to be recognized. And note that his scarf and headgear had been removed as well. It was not a game, but a deadly matter. Why would he do such a thing? The reason is simple. If no one could identify the victim, there would be no investigation. Astonishing is that hunt is a synonym for investigation and prosecution. Hence I am deducing that in season 4, the investigation should be perceived a new version of the hunt. Because of Jung In-Hun and Min, someone will be put on the wanted list. On the other side, Mumyeong’s other job is to entertain people. To conclude, there is a strong connection between killing and entertaining which the main lead destroyed during that night. He reminded the nobles that hunting means taking away a life.

On the other hand, the hunting in chapter 83 looked the exact opposite: (chapter 83) It was far more serious and deadly. The noble was acting like an obsessed and crazy man. There was no trace of fun on his face, only stress and fear. (chapter 83) Thus I am deducing that this chase had been suggested to the main lead in order to release his tension and as such in order to divert his attention from the painter. Naturally, Kim was behind this idea faking his concern for his master. The hunt was supposed to procure pleasure to Yoon Seungho, but it couldn’t, because he was afraid of losing the painter. This explains why he selected the boar as his prey. He was fearless in front of that dangerous animal, for it meant nothing to him. He didn’t mind losing his life… revealing his suicidal disposition which resurfaced later, when the father mentioned the authorities. (chapter 86) (chapter 86) But the moment the servant reminded him to pay more attention to himself (chapter 83), he abandoned the boar immediately. This shows that all this time, Baek Na-Kyum had been on his mind. Therefore it is no coincidence that he rushed home on his horse and looked for Baek Na-Kyum. (Chapter 83) He couldn’t forget that he had scared and wounded the painter in his dissociative state. This shows that the chase had not served its true purpose: entertainment. In reality, the domestics had been the ones suffering the most, for them it was definitely more work (Chapter 84) compared to the past. (chapter 23)

Another important detail caught my attention in this panel: (chapter 83) the hunter had the impression to become a target himself, thus he turned around. His situation coincides with the tigers in Joseon. The latter were hunted down by professional tiger hunters, for they represented a huge source of danger for the local population.

Some of Korea’s most dangerous and ferocious tigers were those that dwelt on the slopes of Inwangsan, just outside the Seoul city walls. These tigers often preyed on woodcutters and firewood merchants traveling to and from Goyang city ― especially at Muakjae Pass. In 1893, at least one tiger was reported to be prowling about Gyeongbok Palace ― probably hunting the tame little deer kept there. There are even claims (probably exaggerated) of tigers stalking Seoul’s gloomy, unlit streets ― the silence shattered by the screams of their unwary victims fighting a losing battle for their lives. When the tigers became too much of a nuisance, professional hunters were summoned. These men were highly respected by Koreans and foreigners for their bravery.  ” Quoted from

To conclude, the hunter can become hunted too.

4. Chased

This is interesting, because the hunter Min became himself a prey to the tiger Seungho. When I started examining this manhwa, I had interpreted this scene as a metaphor for Lee Jihwa’s destiny. (chapter 41) First, I had feared that he might lose his life, then later I had realized that this death was purely symbolic. He would lose his title and family, therefore he would become a commoner. But I had also expressed my doubts that this scene could be a reference to Black Heart, as from chapter 52 on, I had sensed that he would die. But if the pheasant is representing two characters, The Joker and Lee Jihwa, then this means that the deer in chapter 22 (chapter 22) embodies not only the painter, but also someone else. While in the past, I used to believe that it was Kim, now I come to the deduction that it was Jung In-Hun. Note that in this scene, the main lead left the prey and the scholar behind. Both got defeated. By hunting the deer, the learned sir offered this prey to the tiger Yoon Seungho, and this was the painter’s case. Furthermore, the deer was carried back home on a horse (chapter 24) reflecting the painter’s fate. (chapter 25) Who brought the horse to the pavilion? Kim and Deok-Jae! And when the learned sir departed from the mansion, he was followed by the vicious servant and the horse. (chapter 44) Everything is pointing out that the learned sir was like a deer to the hidden hunter. And by losing the painter, the scholar would lose his power over Yoon Seungho, and this is what truly happened. By leaving the main lead’s side, Jung In-Hun died.

(chapter 83) The boar symbolizes not only the nobles like Jihwa, Min, Jang or Park, but also the elders Kim, Lee, Yoon Chang-Hyeon, and as such the king. And if you consider the boar as the personification of the pedophile, the ruler, this means that the moment Yoon Seungho hunted down the nobles, he defeated the ruler in a figurative way. Thus I was wondering if in the end, the main lead would hunt down a human in season 4, Kim or the king. Don’t forget the main lead’s words to the painter: (chapter 11) It could be staged as a hunting accident. In other words, I am expecting a new form of hunt in season 4, a human will be chased, either through an interrogation or through a staged hunt. Since I believe that Kim has been working for the pedophile, we have to envision that both puppet masters will meet their doom in the next season. While the one is prosecuted for murder, the other could be killed during a hunt. Moreover, the manhwaphiles shouldn’t overlook that the king used clothes and impersonation to his advantages in the past, and according to me even in the present. (chapter 37)

Like mentioned in the previous part, Nameless explained to Lee Jihwa that he had to butcher the victim in order to hide the murder. Thus this staged crime scene looked like the scholar had been attacked by a tiger. (Chapter 88) On the other hand, the foot print and the glasses could give the impression that the learned sir had been murdered. However, after adding blood in the fake crime scene and removing the learned sir’s possessions, (chapter 100), the place could be interpreted differently. The inhabitant had been attacked by a tiger during the night. Though the painter had been the prey of these vicious nobles, the real target had been Yoon Seungho. That’s the reason why I had developed the theory that the pedophile had been not only lusting after the young master, but also targeting the Yoons.

Then I noticed an element in this image: (chapter 45) the cobweb behind Deok-Jae. Imagine that this scene took place in the middle of winter, thus the spider’s web got covered by frost. However, this indicates that this room had been abandoned for quite some time. But it is close to the gate. So it should have been the place where the doorkeeper is living. Secondly, I had demonstrated that the shrine had been neglected, for the altar had been removed. (chapter 18) Because of the presence of the cobweb, I started wondering why the author drew it behind Deok-Jae. In my eyes, it is because he was part of the spider’s web. According to me, the learned sir was killed shortly after his departure, and Deok-Jae was a witness of this assassination. That’s why I came to the conclusion that in the past, Yoon Seungho, had caught the attention of the monarch represented by the spider. Since the lord’s fate resembles the painter’s, I am assuming that we should perceive him as a butterfly too. And in order to catch its prey, the spider prepared a web, a web made of lies. Even before the start of season 3, I had declared that right from the start, the young master had been targeted. Thanks to this new parallel, I had another revelation. Remember how I had described the schemers as puppet masters, and they would view people as pawns. As the spider has 8 legs, I am thinking that the pedophile has always been using 8 persons to achieve its goal. Some were aware of the scheme, others were just manipulated. In the past, there were Father Lee, Lee Jihwa, Kim, Jung In-Hun, Heena, Yoon Chang-Hyeon, Yoon Seung-Won and No-Name. So when the story started, I believe that there was a new generation of pawns: Kim, Deok-Jae, Lee Jihwa, No-Name, the noble with the mole, Heena, Yoon Seung-Won and Black Heart. I am excluding father Lee for the simple reason that due to the topknot incident, the scholar was well aware that “lord Song” was no longer judging his family in a good light. He definitely lied low for a while. Naturally, the huge change from the past is that this time Kim had become proactive. But let’s examine Yoon Seungho’s downfall.

Since the main lead was protected by his good reputation, the first goal was to taint his reputation to the point that no one would ever remember him. He was idle, disobedient, but more importantly he was a sodomite. He had to make sure that Yoon Chang-Hyeon would abandon him. The main lead needed to become a “commoner” or “low-born” so that the pedophile could claim him. Yes, the exact opposite of this situation: (chapter 18) That’s the reason why Yoon Seungho was not dressed properly. (chapter 83) If he lived in a shed and had such a simple attire, no one would ever think that he was a noble in the first place. I believe that neither the patriarch nor the ruler had an interest to reveal his true identity. However, the protagonist had to be monitored, for he could try to escape at any moment. That’s the reason why the butler was still tasked to “take care of him”. But by becoming a male night servant for the king, this meant that the other nobles could claim him as well. He had no right. However, since the main lead was a butterfly, he couldn’t get tamed. Hence violence, manipulations and drugs were used to tame the young master. And remember how the spider kills its target: he empties it of its blood. In other word, he sucks all his energy. Therefore it is not surprising that at the end the main lead had become a wreck, and had no light in his eyes. (chapter 57) Naturally, the purge played a huge role in the lord’s suffering reinforcing the huge rift between the pedophile and Yoon Seungho.

In addition, the suicide from the main lead’s mother brought an end to this masquerade. The king could no longer feign ignorance about the main lead’s true identity, and naturally he needed to punish Yoon Chang-Hyeon for his “trick”. He had deceived him, whereas in reality he was well aware of the situation. He had to blame someone else, for he didn’t desire to become responsible for this. Besides, by fueling Yoon Seungho’s hatred for the father, “lord Song” definitely hoped to be judged in a different light. Nonetheless, because the protagonist was abused sexually, physically and emotionally, he could only fear and resent the pedophile, but he could never express it. This was a vicious circle, which ended when the main lead tried to commit suicide himself. (chapter 57)

That’s the reason why I believe that little by little, the pedophile is losing his pawns and as such his legs. The scholar had been abandoned, then later he got killed. Lee Jihwa was punished with the loss of his topknot, then he left town with No-Name. Since the main lead deserted the mansion, the ruler lost control over the protagonist. So he will blame the Lees for that. Heena ran away from the gibang. Then Yoon Chang-Hyeon has no longer any power and connection, he has to rely on his son Yoon Seung-Won or on Kim. But the elder master Yoon played a trick at the end of season 3. As you can see, the pedophile almost lost all his pawns from the past. Finally, Black Heart and his friends got killed. What started like an entertaining hunt became war in the end, for many people died. And this brings me back to Black Heart and lord Jang again.

The nobles are in truth animals. They are dogs, like Byeonduck indicated it. Therefore it is no coincidence that they don’t make a difference between hunting an animal or a human. This explains why lord Shin was abandoned behind in the cold and why Lee Jihwa was compared to a dog (chapter 101). It was not Min’s task to carry a friend… he was just a fellow puppet brought to the shaman’s house in order to entertain Black Heart. This truly exposes that Black Heart never saw in the aristocrats humans. As the red-haired master, he had been considered as the hunting dog, he had fulfilled his function. That’s why he was abandoned. He had helped Min to corner the painter and brought the kisaeng to the scholar’s home. Hence it is not surprising that the wild dogs ended up all dead. They were totally defenseless in front of a huge tiger. This feline is difficult to tame.

As for the painter, Min considered him as an animal that should entertain them. Striking is that the aristocrats’ vocabulary is revolving around violence (“break”, “bloodied”) reflecting their cruel and ruthless nature. (chapter 101) They saw in the sexual violence a new form of hunting. I would even go so far to say that they desired to turn the artist into their pet fulfilling all their desires: (chapter 101) Thus it is not surprising that Yoon Seungho was compared to an animal by his own father in the past. (chapter 83) The pedophile also desired to tame the young master, the beautiful and gentle butterfly. Thus he got brainwashed. He could never refuse anyone, he had to entertain the guests. And now you comprehend why Min said this to the painter. (chapter 101) As a punishment, he was given to lord Jang and his friend. Since Min had captured the artist, he viewed himself as his owner who would give order to his pet. Yet, a deer is a shy, but wild animal, difficult to control making it difficult to be tamed.

Min had turned into a dog, because he had been misguided. He never realized that his biggest wish was to be noticed as a human by the painter. (chapter 99) But this was impossible, for Black Heart never treated Baek Na-Kyum as a man. Hence I come to the conclusion that by meeting the painter, Yoon Seungho rediscovered his true nature: he was a free spirit, a tiger! And guess what… In Joseon, the tiger was perceived as a good talisman to chase away the evil spirit!! (chapter 102) Hence the dogs became the preys of the huge tiger. On the other hand, I am wondering if in the next season, the painter will paint a tiger and show it to his lover. So far, we couldn’t see the pictures from his childhood.

But how could the tiger earn the deer’s trust? It is because he treated Baek Na-Kyum as a human. By falling in love, Yoon Seungho rediscovered his humanity. His beating heart was the reason why he didn’t end up completely as a beast. His art moved his heart and healed his eyes. He could forget the violence and blood from his youth. Yet, at the end of season 3, Yoon Seungho has the impression that he could get hunted down, for he killed the nobles. However, since he spared the kisaengs, Seokdae and even his own staff, people will have the impression that he is not capable to commit such a crime. Why? It is because he has been portrayed as weak-hearted by the butler. He often had a change of heart.

Before closing this essay, I would like to point out that the pedophile is not just a spider, but also a dragon, for he is the king of Joseon. Hence expect in the next season a battle between a tiger and a dragon…

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. 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:

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:] 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

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 were manipulations and lies explained by his butler. Therefore you can comprehend why Kim got scared (chapter 56), 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. At the same time, when the lord read the poem, he was encouraged to recall the original sijo. This shows that at some point, Yoon Seungho rediscovered literature. Words and paintings helped to create memories. Thus 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

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. (Chapter 75) 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. And this truly happened in season 3. 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) The presence of a loved one is necessary in order to cope with traumatic childhood abuse.

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 someone told him that the painter needed the presence of a loved one to recover. Kim made sure that Yoon Seungho would feel guilty. Deep down, Yoon Seungho knew that he was responsible for the panic attack. (Chapter 66) But the real cause for all this was the butler’s silence and complicity. That’s why he remained by his side, until the artist had recovered. Thus I had predicted that after meeting Nameless, Baek-Na-Kyum would 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 incident in the gibang put an end to it, and this is definitely related to the erotic pictures. However, there is no ambiguity that Jung In-Hun was actually receiving his karma. Remember that in the Alternative Universe, the protagonist used Jung Na-Min as his artist name. In other words, the name of the artist must have had an effect on his career. Besides, let’s not forget that the teacher is preaching immobility, for people’s fate is always determined. (Chapter 6) They can not escape their conditions. Thus the gods chose to punish him the following way: he could never escape his own situation. He would remain a man with no wealth and connection. Thus no matter what he did, it ended with a failure. Therefore it is not surprising that he came to resent the painter, for he caught the attention of a powerful noble and this at least twice. The scholar was offered a position, but due to the incident in the gibang, the sponsor changed his mind. 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. At the same time, it was the reason why there was a ruckus in the gibang too. 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: The Light 💡in the Heart❤ (second version)

This is where you can read the manhwa. 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: 

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

I would like to thank Luzy 😉again for pushing me to ponder more about chapter 70 and its significance.

(chapter 70) When you look at the panel, you’ll observe that Baek Na-Kyum is represented by three white candles, while on the lord’s side there are just two white bougies. Since the color white symbolizes purity, this picture exposes that both protagonists are not just healing, but also getting less selfish and more open. Nonetheless, the noble’s purification is not complete yet. Here, I would like the manhwaphiles to keep in mind that since 3 is often associated with order, perfection, completion, reconciliation or fecundity due to the fusion of 1 and 2, it explicates why 3 is considered as magical and mystical. On the other hand, the number 2 symbolizes not only duality (light-darkness; ying-yang), but also balance and companionship. It is also related to kindness, and reflects a quiet power of judgment. At the same time, it indicates the need for planning and boundaries in order to keep the balance. And now, the readers can grasp why I view this panel as a confirmation that the master’s carthasis isn’t finished. In chapter 70, he has finally dropped his armor, this just means that he has finally abandoned father Yoon’s doctrines for good. But let’s not forget that Yoon Seungho’s life has not only be determined by father Yoon, but also by Kim, his surrogate father. Hence he is still under his influence.

1. The butler’s principles

But what are Kim’s rules?

  1. (chapter 23) Ignorance is a blessing for him, because it allows him to let his master to be in the dark. That’s why the master relied on the valet all this time. Kim was his eyes and ears, therefore certain rumors didn’t reach the noble’s ears. (chapter 18) On the other hand, the butler let him know about this gossip. (chapter 22) Since Yoon Seungho perceives himself as cultured, because he reads so much, he could only laugh about this rumor. However, he never realized the origin of these gossips. The valet utilized the rumors in order to deceive everyone, including the main lead. That’s why Kim could only judge “ignorance as a blessing”, because it helped him to manipulate the staff, the town folks and the nobles. He had an interest to create a bad image about Yoon Seungho. This helped him to keep the main character in isolation and in the dark. Moreover, it reinforced the lord’s dependency on his assistant. In order to corroborate my interpretation, I will use a panel reflecting the true nature of their relationship: (chapter 11) Observe that the valet is not portrayed with eyes. This is not just an indication of the butler’s lie. The valet’s eyes became the master’s. This signifies that the words and the vision of the valet became the noble’s reality. At the same time, the noble’s mouth is closed and his hands are not present either. Note, he is getting dressed by his own valet. As a conclusion, he is entirely relying on Kim. He has no mouth, no hand, no ear and no eye. Everything belongs to the butler. This single picture exposes the butler’s true powers. The lord was totally deprived of all his senses and his own body, a real puppet. And this interpretation leads me to the following question: Who killed the servant in chapter 1? In my eyes, the noble was just the executioner, while the butler was the judge. Why do I see it like that? First, note that in the scene, the main lead has no eye (chapter 1) and he doesn’t want to know about the painter’s reasons for not painting any longer. I know, some readers might reject this idea, but I would like them to remember that we see the butler acting like a judge in front of the doctor, that’s why the commoner begs the valet (“Are you trying to have me killed”). (chapter 65) He uses Yoon Seungho’s power, yet the latter is described as a killer. In chapter 1, Yoon Seungho was the epitome of ignorance (narrow-minded, blind and deaf) (chapter 1) and the butler didn’t need to be by his side, as he had a real control over the lord’s hands, eyes and ears. Now you understand why Kim really treasures ignorance. Simultaneously, the valet values knowledge, as it procures him power.
  2. Don’t take it to heart (chapter 50) This idiom doesn’t only imply to ignore your feelings, but also to deny the existence of your heart. If the noble has no emotions, then he can be the perfect puppet. This explicates why Yoon Seungho had a relapse after this conversation. Despite his warning, the master did listen to the butler’s advice.
  3. Act, as if nothing happened (chapter 65) That’s why there is no sincere apology. (chapter 65)
  4. It’s none of my business” (chapter 65). He prioritizes his own life. He is not interested in people’s passion and well-being. He doesn’t care about people’s motivations. The latter just become relevant, the moment they affect his life. He needs to know about people’s behavior and thoughts for his manipulations in order to protect his quiet life.
  5. He hates trouble and scandal,(chapter 65) therefore any incident must be covered up. At the same time, it implies as well that everything must be done in the shadow. That’s why without any spectator, he removes the snowman embodying the painter. The final panel contain all the butler’s doctrines. He will erase everything related to the past, acting as if nothing happened. It doesn’t matter, if someone gets destroyed in the end, because on the surface, it will look like he just cleared a way. He gives the impression that he helped the persons concerned, not taking into consideration how his actions and decisions will affect others. If someone has to pay the price for this, then so be it, as long as it doesn’t disturb his life. From my point of view, this scene is full of symbolism. From my perspective, he is ruthless and even willing to dirty his hand to a certain extent, since he is using a broom. However, this gesture exposes too that he is not directly soiling his hands. This is the reason why he is never directly involved with people’s wrongdoings. He will just push others to commit wrongdoings with remarks. They have to act according to his own thoughts and benefit. This interpretation is not exaggerated, if you compare this scene with Deok-Jae’s misdeed in chapter 46. The vicious servant used his own feet to ruin the artist’s creation or he pushed the painter with his own shoulder. (chapter 46) At the same time, with this new approach, it helps to understand why the butler’s evilness was never caught. He could always feign ignorance with such a behavior and was never directly involved.
  6. And this leads to the following observation. Kim’s final rule is to utilize others in order to achieve his goal. The butler allowed Jihwa to torment the painter three times (10, 17, 59). He also allowed the vicious servant Deok-Jae to betray Yoon Seungho and plan a murder (chapter 51). He hoped that Heena noona would take the painter away (chapter 68) and he is now expecting that Min organizes a second abduction while framing others: Nameless, Heena noona and Jihwa.

After exposing the butler’s doctrines, I would like to describe the impact of these rules over Yoon Seungho’s life, and they slowly disappeared or diminished.

2. Yoon Seungho’s life under these rules

  1. First, the rule “don’t take it to heart” was completely abandoned in chapter 58, because he was confessing his love to the painter properly: (chapter 62) Here, the noble stated that he adored the painter). This means that the light and warmth had finally reached the lord’s heart, which is also mirrored by the light in the panel. But the problem is that after the low-born’s disappearance, the master had the impression, he had been betrayed and abandoned. Hence he became enraged and blinded by his own wound. This is a sign that he definitely took it to heart. Moreover, we shouldn’t forget that despite the incident at the barn, the noble was not even able to stick to the rule, treating the artist like a sex toy. In the end, Yoon Seungho brought him to his own bed, indicating that he considered him as his partner. To sum up, the noble was still not honest to himself exposing the valet’s influence.
  2. The longer the painter remained by his side, the more the main lead caused trouble and scandal (rule 4). First, it started with the nobles’ humiliation in chapter 8 and 18.. Then another scandal appeared, when the lord punished the staff for not following his order (chapter 30). As you can see, the uproar remained within the mansion in season 1. This is the reason why the noble retreated in chapter 30, when he was pressured by the other aristocrats. (chapter 33) Here, he was definitely avoiding any scandal. He was running away, although he tried to deceive the nobles by declaring that the painter would belong to him. And during the second season, the readers can observe a progression, the scandal and uproar is now reaching the town (chapter 64) . Thereby the climax was reached in chapter 67, when Yoon Seungho visited the Lees’ mansion. For the first time, he was confronting a noble and didn’t fear to cause a scandal, when he showed up with a sword and didn’t even remove his shoes. (chapter 67)
  3. As for the principle “act, as if nothing happened“, the manhwaphiles can detect that it is still present in the lord’s life, because he still doesn’t judge his action in the barn as a wrongdoing. (chapter 70) And this confession could be used against the lord later, hence after that night, Yoon Seungho kept his distance from his lover. Thus he said this to his lover in chapter 75 and later asked if the painter was truly resisting. Slowly, he had internalized that consent was central: (chapter 79) But this doesn’t signify that this doctrine had completely vanished. For me, it has been gradually weakened, the moment the lord started feeling remorse. The problem is that he still relied on the butler to correct his wrongdoings. That’s why he sent the valet to the artist in chapter 12 or left the artist behind in chapter 33. He ran away from his responsibility (chapter 33) and let Kim take the burden. Yet the more time passed on, the more the noble took his responsibility. He protected him from the maids and decided to buy him better clothes. This is no coincidence that in chapter 40, he implied to the painter that the latter could now rely on him. This progression is visible, when he took care of the painter in chapter 55. He covered him (chapter 55) and watched over him during the night. But this principle will be truly abandoned, the moment the lord apologizes properly, and this expectation was proven correct, as the real apology took place in season 3. (chapter 102) Nevertheless, for me, he truly changed a lot from episode 70, because there he expressed regrets for the first time in front of the painter. Notice that in episode 71, we had a semi-apology, for he was admitting his mistakes: (chapter 71) The problem is that in the bathroom, he chose the wrong words. Hence the painter could only misunderstand him and pushed his hand away. While the manhwaphiles could witness his huge pangs of conscience, the painter never did. He was either unconscious (chapter 32) or asleep (chapter 50) or blind or deaf(chapter 49). And little by little, the lord learned how to apologize to his lover. In season 3, he admitted his wrongdoing right away. (chapter 82) Then later he tried to redeem himself. (chapter 84) Note that here, he was doing everything himself. He was no longer relying on Kim. Hence in the first version, I had voiced that the lord would apologize to Baek Na-Kyum, after the second abduction had been solved. And this expectation became a reality. The lord felt definitely huge pangs of conscience. (chapter 102) He knew that Baek Na-Kyum had been targeted. Yet he thought that by just warning his childhood friend, the problem was solved. He didn’t desire to cause too much trouble. However, I believe that after this crime, the noble will realize that he needs to take matters into his own hands. He can no longer live like that, he needs to become more reliable and not to fear scandal. We have another clue for this theory, the painter’s question: (chapter 102) He is tasked to investigate how this tragedy could take place. Why did they get separated for so long.
  4. Ignorance is a blessing
  5. with to utilize others in order to achieve his goal: Yoon Seungho praised Kim in that scene (chapter 23), because he liked keeping people in the dark as well. We had a perfect example with the deal between Jung In-Hun, the painter and the protagonist. First, Yoon Seungho gave the scholar the impression that the former was just an uncultured fool, whereas in truth the low noble was the one deceived, because Yoon Seungho was giving him just an empty promise. At the same time, the rich noble lied to the painter, when he claimed that Jung In-Hun had come to see him. (chapter 7) However, it backfired on Yoon Seungho the moment the latter saw the painter’s reactions. He would run to his former teacher immediately, leaving the main character behind. Then he smiled to Jung In-Hun (chapter 7) and blushed in his presence. That’s the moment Yoon Seungho’s heart was moved, justifying the words in chapter 63: (chapter 63) No one has ever questioned how the master could treasure the artist’s smile so much? One might say that the first smile occurred in chapter 40 (chapter 40), but as you know, each event happens twice during the same season. So the lord experienced it much earlier. That’s why I believe that the first smile in chapter 7 played a huge role. The incident marked the return of the aristocrat’s jealousy, which had been buried for a long time. That’s why Yoon Seungho decided to reveal his plan. He hoped that with this new approach, Baek Na-Kyum would perceive him as a benevolent lord and look at him differently. He hoped that Baek Na-Kyum would smile for him. This explicates why the lord underlined the importance of connections and wealth. (chapter 7) Note that at the end of the chapter, he treated the painter as a real guest. He invited him to his bedchamber officially. (chapter 8) And observe that the noble was here smiling, he was already imitating the artist. This explicated too why not only his moves in this chapter were contradicting each other, but also Kim was introduced here for the first time. And note that from that moment, the lord never tried to trick the painter afterwards. Like I have already pointed out, the incident at the pavilion was definitely organized by the butler. And with this example, the manhwaphiles can see that the lord was applying the 6th rule as well, but dropped it due to the low-born’s reaction. This is not surprising why this manipulation ended up causing more and more pain. Yoon Seungho had brought him upon himself, revealing how the first doctrine “ignorance is not a blessing“. With this new observation, I perceive the episode 7 as a first major turning point. The lord was dropping the 6th rule (to utilize others in order to achieve his goal). However, this doesn’t mean that he abandoned the first doctrine. Quite the opposite… it took him a long time to realize why he couldn’t achieve his goal. In my opinion, the master started changing in chapter 67. Contrary to chapter 33, Yoon Seungho couldn’t bear to hear how people would talk behind his back: a sodomizer and a beast who corrupted Lee Jihwa and others. (chapter 67). Note that for the first time, the lord decided to defend himself, correct people’s perception about him, which he never did before (chapter 18, 22, 57). This coincides the return of the lord’s hearing and speech abilities. In chapter 67, he is using his own ears and mouth, he is no longer relying on the butler’s help. What the lord imagined to perceive as help was just an illusion. However, I believe that the lord decided to drop the first principle in chapter 68, when he heard the conversation between Baek Na-Kyum and Heena noona. Observe that he is listening behind the door, as if he was spying, which I perceive as another evidence for Kim’s spying activities. Nevertheless, this was never the main lead’s intention, hence he left quietly. Yet the painter’s words did push the lord to abandon the butler’s first principle. But what did he hear exactly? Here, I have to admit that I can’t be 100% sure, but I think that he heard the painter’s confession, because in chapter 70, Yoon Seungho asked the painter, if the latter was afraid of him (chapter 70). And note that when the painter confessed, he externalized his fear. (chapter 68) But what caught my attention is that when we see the lord’s feet in front of the door, we have to keep in mind, Yoon Seungho was not able to see the painter’s tears. He could only hear his words. Consequently he was relying on his own ears. However, this doesn’t signify that Yoon Seungho is blind. In my opinion, in this precise moment Yoon Seungho was able to envision Baek Na-Kyum’s tears, because he was forced to use his mind’s eye. Then with this new perspective, we have a new version of chapter 3. However, the huge difference is that Yoon Seungho’s mind’s eye is no longer focused on himself, but on the painter. This explicates, why the master decided to retrieve and to give him space. Without seeing his face, he could sense that there was affection, because the painter was crying. The readers should recall that the painter’s tears have always had a huge impact on the noble, because they healed his eyes, hand and heart. The manhwaworms can comprehend why the lord chose to let the painter determine his own fate. The presence of tears and the painter’s voice were able to remove the lord’s veil on his eyes and ears for good. I would like to remind the manhwaphiles that in chapter 68, Kim tried to destroy the lord’s own judgement by recurring to gaslighting and distorting the past. [For more explications, read this essay: ] In other words, the discussion in chapter 68 represented the most important battle between the master and his domestic, where the latter wanted the main lead to lose his sight and hearing for a second time. However, the butler failed. The irony is that people perceived the argument as the butler’s victory, while in truth it should be judged as the valet’s loss of power. What Kim didn’t expect is that with his manipulations, he encouraged the main lead to rush to the painter’s study. The butler never expected that the lord would stop right in front of the door and listen to the conversation. For me, this marked the return of the lord’s senses. This is the reason why the lord is able to hear the door opening and the commoners leaving the study, (chapter 69) although he is sitting in his bedchamber. Imagine, he is no longer relying on the butler’s information contrary to chapter 56: (chapter 56) With this new approach, the readers can understand why the aristocrat can make such a comment in chapter 70: . Therefore I deduce that the butler can no longer control the lord’s body, since he is no longer required to be his eyes, ears and hands. However, this doesn’t mean that Kim is truly defeated. He still controls the staff, especially the male domestics. Here, I would like to make a little disgression. In my opinion, the butler played a huge role in the first abduction. How come that the servants were so sure that the painter had run away? (chapter 61) They were not present, since both protagonists were at the physician’s. From my point of view, Kim must have manipulated the servants… he just needed to imply that Baek Na-Kyum had escaped, while in front of Yoon Seungho, he would say the opposite later due to the commoner’s return: (chapter 62) There’s no doubt that with the painter’s appearance, he could use the incident to obtain more support from the servants. The painter had caused trouble again, he was responsible for their misery. But since he truly exposed his true nature to the main lead (abusing his authority, criticizing and judging his master), he can no longer appear in front of him. Right now, he has to lie low, hence he needs other people to be his eyes and ears. This explains why the servant is portrayed without eyes either (chapter 70). The absence of the eyes is an indication that they belong to Kim, just like the lantern indicates that the domestic is acting on the valet’s order. And in season 3, we can observe a similar situation. This time, they faked obedience (chapter 99), while they badmouthed their master. (chapter 98) Because the lord feared to lose his lover, he didn’t pay attention to the domestic’s insult: (chapter 98) But the insult was the proof that they never treated the painter as a part of the household. He was just a spoiled brat.
  6. And since the noble is now using his own body and all his own senses, it becomes clear why the lord is gradually becoming less selfish. He needed to be selfish in the past in order not to become completely alienated. This signifies that he would have lost his own identity. This explicates why his selfishness is slowly vanishing, indicating that the noble is on the verge of dropping rule 4 (“This is not my business“) which embodies selfishness. On the other hand, his selfishness can not completely be eliminated, as long as the butler is by his side. Why? It is because the valet is trying to justify his actions by acting selfless. He lulls the lord in the illusion, he will do anything for Yoon Seungho, and the new scene in the bathroom is the perfect example. Observe that the lord is determined to treat the painter more like a guest, hence he asks his servant to follow the painter to the door. From my point of view, it was not, because he wanted the domestic to keep an eye on the painter, but because he wanted to treat the artist with great respect. Yet, note that the moment the kisaeng leaves her brother and the door closes, the servant’s behavior and tone change drastically. He pressures Baek Na-Kyum and gives orders. He is truly rude. We could say that he treats the low-born like a servant, as though he wanted him to feel so little. Kim’s strategy was to remind the painter of his position: he is just a servant, a new version of chapter 52. Remember that Kim’s intention from the start of the second season was always to diminish the artist’s status: he is just a temporally favored servant, nothing more. Striking is that the domestic never says that the lord gave him the order to bring the painter. He uses here a passive sentence “you are to attend to him” which is important. That way, the servant can hide the identity of the person who requested this. And since the lord was looking at the intruder in a rather cold way, I believe that he didn’t expect Baek Na-Kyum. However, when the door was closed loudly, the lord must have realized that this must have been Kim’s action. The lord didn’t mind, for it looked like the butler was helping him to improve his relationship with the painter. This interpretation was also confirmed in season 3. Yoon Seungho showed no desire to investigate the matter of “Jung In-Hun” or Deok-Jae’s death, for he was too much focusing on his lover. He kept saying that this was not of his concern. (chapter 98) However, he was totally wrong here. That’s the reason why the abduction could even take place. Because of the last incident, the main lead is forced to recognize that he needs to investigate the matter, as everything or everyone can affect his life. This is important, because that’s the only way for Yoon Seungho to recognize the butler’s wrongdoings. He encouraged him not to pay attention on others so that he wouldn’t detect his wrongdoings. Thanks this rule, Kim could live freely.

All this leads me to the final observation: since the butler is relying on others, this signifies that these persons become his eyes, ears, mouth and hands. Therefore he becomes dependent on them. This indicates that the valet has switched his position with the noble. And this is relevant, because this announces Kim’s future demise. He will experience himself, how ignorance can’t be a blessing. In chapter 69, they heard from the kisaeng that the painter could write, hence he will take this info as face-value. I am assuming now that he knows that the painter can not read Chinese and will come to the conclusion that he can read Hangeul like any commoner. However, while in the past, I used to think that Kim had asked the domestic can only listen to their exchange, I realized that I was wrong. It was still Kim behind the window. (chapter 70) But he is deprived of his sight. And now, if you look at the conversation in the bathroom, we have to question what information the spy gathers:

“You refuse to watch” and “Don’t push me away”

This means that the servant will have the impression that the artist is still resisting the lord, especially after hearing that the low-born corrected the lord. However, the spy can’t see what is happening in the room. He can’t observe how the painter is letting the lord caressing his face (chapter 70), kissing him tenderly . That’s why Kim will have the impression that the painter is still not accepting the lord. This explicates why after that night, they were separated. The butler imagined that if they had no longer sex, the artist would feel neglected and believe that the lord had already a change of heart. He hoped that after such a separation, the painter would leave the mansion, exactly like the lord had been encouraged to have a relapse in chapter 50. In my eyes, Kim was slowly viewing the artist as a man consumed by lust. How could he still accept to have sex with Yoon Seungho after the latter had treated him like a sex toy in the shed? The butler couldn’t grasp the protagonists’ thirst for love and warmth.

From my perspective, Kim had already realized the urgency of the situation at the end of season 2. He was on the verge to lose his position. The painter was getting more and more power, while the reality is that Yoon Seungho was slowly regaining his freedom, because he was just owning his own body. This explicates why he is now delicate and treats the painter’s hand as a treasure. (chapter 70) Under this new light, it becomes understandable why Kim decided to betray his master and rekindle with Yoon Chang-Hyeon. The punishment was the signal for the valet to switch the alliance.

Therefore as long as the butler remains by the noble’s side, the transformation is not completed. That’s why we still have no proper apology and the lord is not determined to get justice for the artist. Yet, the light has already entered the master’s heart, irradiating his whole body. Consequently, the main lead could finally drop his armor: it melted away. To conclude, the final transformation took place in the mountain which was symbolized by the lord’s tears. (chapter 102) From that moment on, the light had now reached the mind. He could drop his self-loathing finally which was the foundation of Kim’s principle. It was okay to cry. These were tears of happiness and relief… He had been able to rescue his lover. This means that Yoon Seungho did everything what the butler rejects: the embrace as a way to console and apologize and the tears as a sign of regret and happiness. But why does the valet abhor them? It is because he could never admit his own mistakes and as such he could never beg for forgiveness. (doctor Frost, chapter 211) 8chapter 50) Since he has been denying the existence of his heart, there can be no light in the heart. (chapter 50) Here, the butler never cried, he just showed pity and sympathy towards Baek Na-Kyum, however he was not speaking from the heart.

And now, I would like to close this analysis with three quotes from the book called “The Light in the Heart written by Roy T. Bennet which inspired me to write this essay, because it illustrates the lord’s metamorphosis:

Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a choice (chapter 63/70). Optimism is a choice (chapter 68/69: the lord recognized that he still had some chance, though he was very scared). Kindness is a choice. Giving is a choice. Respect is a choice (chapter 69). Whatever choice you make makes you. Choose wisely.

Don’t Just