What can I write which is not already written about this episode? An episode that picked up even more speed than the two episodes before and which - given it was the one before last - should have felt rushed with all the things happening and unravelling, but surprisingly it didn't.
It felt as if we were in these rooms, breathing the same air as our OTPs, seeing what they see, and hearing what they hear. What an amazing episode.
I so love Eun-Soo and her strength. Willing to poison herself to counteract the poison - what kind of strength and what kind of faith/belief/trust she must have in fate to even considering this? She knows that without Choi Young she is nothing, she cannot live without him. She might survive in her world but that would not be living and she is determined and so composed and so quietly un-heroic for a drama heroine.
We see Choi Young caring, his love and care for Eun-Soo tearing him apart inside and yet he keeps it all in, functions in his duty to the king and tries his best not only to make the best out of the days that remain but also supports Eun-Soo in her decision even if he doesn't like it.
Their love is so epic, so big and yet it doesn't need big confessions and shows of THE LOVE. They quietly love and endure; believing that this is all worth it that there is a chance even if the future looks so drab and insecure.
FAITH. 신의. Shinui - and yet so much more ... faith, trust, belief. These words were the akai ito of the drama. That continuously worked its thread through the drama, through every character's actions and thoughts.
They have to trust their own abilities and keep the faith, believing in themselves as well as their loved ones. Gongmin who has to trust his own judgment and that of his advisors. Who had faith that the ministers will do the right decision for the good of Goryeo and the citizens. Nogook who has to belief that she will have a child one day and live. Choi Young who has to trust the king, believing that despite all he and Eun-Soo will live together happily ... and Eun-Soo who has literally to do a leap of faith by taking the poison to counteract the other poison raging in her body, believing that she will survive, trusting that Choi Young will live well even if the unthinkable happens.
When Choi Young squares off with Ki Cheol at the end of the episode, Ki Cheol inadvertently gives Choi the reason to continue. Not only as a human being who is in love with Eun-Soo (lovers
is such a shallow word compared to what Eun-Soo and Choi Young are to each other) but he also gives him the confidence, the faith, to continue as a warrior. He absolves Choi because being a warrior, taking up the sword is to protect his woman. And it is important that in this moment Eun-Soo wakes up, even if the situation for Choi Young looks not too well at that very moment.
All in all a fast paced and insightful episode with lots of little quiet shippy moments which lead to an epic finale.