My Secret Hotel: Episode 14 Recap

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This is not an easy episode to watch. In episode 13 I was really annoyed with how childish the men were. Now I’m annoyed with how childish Sang Hyo is. But since the men matured somewhat and decided to respect each other and Sang Hyo’s relationship with each of them (even if they didn’t like it), I have hope that Sang Hyo will also mature. She needs to make a decision soon because stringing these men along will hurt them more than it will hurt her.

It must take a lot of guts and inner strength for Hae Young to ignore Sang Hyo’s pleas to try again one more time. Then again, he must be so tired of chasing after her and continually getting pushed away. Self-preservation is kicking in, and he doesn’t want to get hurt anymore.

Sang Hyo is a bit selfish to insist that he let her stay. She uses that day he left her seven years ago as a point of attack, saying that he never refused her wishes until then and so must make up for that day he left her by accepting her tonight. After all those days you pushed him away!! Seeing her insist like this is a little infuriating, and sadly Hae Young finally takes her in. He doesn’t care if she’s staying with him to keep up appearances for the sake of the hotel. He loves her so much that if he could just have more time with her, whether she loves him or not, it would be enough.

As for Sung Gyeom, he’s a bit mopey after the private conversation he had with Sang Hyo. Now that Manager Lee has sort of “outed” her feelings a bit, she has no choice but to tell Sung Gyeom the truth: that she doesn’t know whom she really likes. She really wants to start anew with Sung Gyeom, but at the same time she can’t forget her feelings from seven years ago. She has realized that she can’t ignore those feelings anymore, and wants to “check.” She needs time to figure out if she truly still loves Hae Young or not.

Speaking of whom, at home Hae Young gives Sang Hyo a set of rules she must abide by if she is to live with him:

1. No skinship with Sung Gyeom – public or private. She and Hae Young need to keep up appearances that they have a very happy marriage.

2. No announcement that she’s dating Sung Gyeom – publicly or privately. She should just avoid him for the next three months.

Sang Hyo counters with her own condition: Hae Young is not allowed to touch her at all while they live together. She will stay in his parents’ room in the meantime. It’s funny how she even hesitates agreeing to Hae Young’s first two conditions because I was under the impression that she’s trying to start over with Hae Young. She has too many residual feelings for each man.

3. Sang Hyo cannot work late. Or if she is to work late (or be with Sung Gyeom) she must call him right away. It’s cute how the two of them make this hissing/slurping sound at each other, but it’s also really impressive that Hae Young backs down and compromises with her. Before he would just insist on having his way.

4. Sang Hyo must call him ‘honey’. HAHAHA.

Hae Young’s list runs long and deep, and Sang Hyo ends up falling asleep on him. So he ends his list with an “I love you” and seals it with a light kiss on her forehead.

Sung Gyeom receives a late night visitor in his hotel room: it’s Gi Chul, dressed in dark clothes and a cap hanging low over his face. He believes that Manager Cha is the one who killed Hwang, and that Manager Lee is in on it. He hopes that Sung Gyeom can do something about it before one more person dies.

The following morning, Sung Gyeom calls Manager Lee to his office. He practically asks him point blank if Manager Lee ordered Cha to kill Young Mi and Hwang. Manager Lee feigns ignorance, but Sung Gyeom pulls out the card he received from Young Mi after she died. He knows he didn’t kill Young Mi, so he suspects Manager Lee. However Lee pulls out the same exact card, which means that if one of the cards is true, one of them right now is the perpetrator.

Just then, Sung Gyeom’s mother Park Jung Sook arrives at the hotel! Sang Hyo happens to see her and escorts her to his office. They bump into Manager Lee along the way, and the two of them awkwardly say hello to each other. It’s almost like Jung Sook is afraid of Manager Lee.

Sung Gyeom and his mother have a very happy reunion, and he confesses that he’s in love with Sang Hyo. Jung Sook is initially amused that her son has fallen in love – a one-sided love at that – but is rattled when she hears Sang Hyo’s name. She must know Sang Hyo from somewhere!

When Eun Joo hears that Sang Hyo escorted Jung Sook to her son’s office, she’s affronted that Sang Hyo practically “stole her mother-in-law”! She quickly changes her style into one of a demure looking girl and heads to Sung Gyeom’s office to introduce herself. Sung Gyeom can’t help but giggle at the sight of Eun Joo acting like a sweet, pure young lady. Jung Sook pays no mind to her, having been more disturbed at the mention of Sang Hyo, and requests to be escorted to her room. Once outside the office, Jung Sook asks if Sung Gyeom is close to Sang Hyo. Eun Joo assures that they’re not close. After all, Sang Hyo is married already and it’s her second marriage.

That day, Shi Chan brings Hae Young to the conference room to show him the presentation that he and the team have made. It’s the ‘One Bedroom Project’. HAHA. Hae Young’s moods based on Sang Hyo’s comings and goings have so worried the team that instead of working, they’re trying to help Hae Young keep Sang Hyo for good!

First they will have a drinking game! One of the workers has practiced Spin the Bottle so many times that he can assure victory for Hae Young and have the bottle land on Sang Hyo every single time. Once Sang Hyo is tipsy the girls in the company will start complimenting Hae Young’s good looks. And then after this, skinship will begin! The team starts chanting, “Kiss… kiss… kiss!” embarrassing Hae Young further. And finally, if all goes well they should return home and end up on the same bed! If she’s not drunk enough, then Shi Chan and the other two guys will sleep over and insist on sleeping in the spare bedroom. That will leave Sang Hyo no choice but to share a bed with Hae Young!

So, what does Hae Young think of their plan?? As ridiculous as it is, Hae Young sighs, “If you all insist.” Hehehe.

Hae Young calls up Sang Hyo and reluctantly tells her they’ll have to host a housewarming party. His team starts chanting “Housewarming party!” to make it seem like he really has no choice in the matter, and Shi Chan tells her to just order food for them. As annoyed as she is, Sang Hyo is home to greet them all when they arrive that night. Hae Young puts up a really good front that he’s being forced into hosting this party, but he’s really happy and hopeful that this plan could work.

Meanwhile, Sung Gyeom looks like a hurt puppy when he learns that Sang Hyo left work early to prepare for this party. He goes to find his mother, who is on the phone with Manager Lee. Jung Sook recognizes Sang Hyo from somewhere, and refuses to accept her – ever. Manager Lee knows why, though we’re not sure how Sang Hyo is related to Jung Sook. Sung Gyeom overhears part of the conversation and realizes that his mother knows Manager Lee. That means she knew about how his father died, right?

Jung Sook tells him to forget about the past, as his father died in an accident thirty years ago. She wants her son to return to the States with her, but Sung Gyeom definitely won’t now, especially when his mother is acting suspiciously.

Spin the Bottle commences! This is the version where if it lands on you, you drink. As expected, the bottle lands on Sang Hyo and she’s encouraged to drink by the entire team’s song and dance. But because she can’t drink well, Sang Hyo calls for a ‘dark knight’ to drink for her! She hands the beer to Hae Young, and he’s forced to drink for her. Shi Chan is so disappointed in him, especially when Hae Young says he couldn’t refuse because Sang Hyo’s so pretty. Haha!

Round 2, and Sang Hyo is picked again. She calls for her knight, and Hae Young drinks again. It keeps going until Hae Young is the one who’s ridiculously drunk. Phase 2 of the plan begins and the girls start complimenting Hae Young. Sang Hyo doesn’t bite. She starts commenting on his bad personality and feels bad that they all have to work so hard because he’s never satisfied. Hilariously, what she says is exactly true and they can’t help but agree with her! She knows him too well. Poor Hae Young can’t defend himself, he’s so drunk.

Eventually he has to be carried back to his room. As Sang Hyo tucks him into bed, Hae Young says, “Don’t leave Sang Hyo.” Well, to keep up appearances she can’t, and his coworkers see themselves out of the apartment. Sang Hyo hands Hae Young a pillow to hug, and she is reminded of how handsome he is when asleep. Charmed that the way he slept hasn’t changed in the seven years apart, she ends up staying the whole night right next to him in the same room. The following morning, Hae Young is happily surprised to see her there next to him.

So I guess the One Bedroom Project kind of worked!

Jung Sook once again calls Manager Lee to do something about Sang Hyo, so he recommends Sang Hyo to take time off. He makes up the excuse that as long as she and Sung Gyeom work in the same hotel, the rumors will never die down. Therefore if she wants to think of what’s best for Sung Gyeom, she needs to go for now.

Sang Hyo awkwardly bumps into Sung Gyeom, and it’s clear that her new living arrangement has made things uncomfortable between them. She tries to tell him about her time off, but Sung Gyeom knows that it’s all Manager Lee’s doing. He won’t let her take the time off but will respect Lee’s wish to separate them. He’ll avoid her for now, and in the meantime could concentrate on finding his father’s killer. Sung Gyeom wants Sang Hyo to go somewhere with him first, but before she can reply Manager Lee interrupts the both of them. Manager Lee sends Sang Hyo away and admonishes Sung Gyeom for being near her again. But Sung Gyeom doesn’t care. He will do anything in his power to make sure Sang Hyo stays in the hotel and never gets hurt because of him.

Manager Lee is worried that things are going to get out of control between Sung Gyeom, Jung Sook, and Sang Hyo. Manager Cha assures him that he’ll take care of it – but who knows what that means. He sees Kyung Hee on the way out of Lee’s office and tells her that Manager Lee is worried for her well-being. The real question is, is it Cha who’s worried, or Lee? Kyung Hee wishes for Manager Cha to continue ignoring her so that she can work at the hotel peacefully.

Meanwhile Hae Young hurries home early to prepare dinner for Sang Hyo. This time around he wants to do everything for her that he didn’t get a chance to do before. He calls her to tell her to come home early. However, Sang Hyo is at that “somewhere” with Sung Gyeom, which ends up being looking for apartments. He wants to get one so as to convince his mother that he’s starting a new life in Korea with Sang Hyo and has no intention of going back to the States. He then invites her out to dinner. Sang Hyo hesitates, knowing that Hae Young is waiting for her. But when Sung Gyeom assures her that he won’t take up much time she goes along with him.

This whole time, Manager Cha has been watching from a distance.

While at the restaurant, Sang Hyo constantly fidgets with anxiety and checks her phone. Sung Gyeom decides that tea might be better than food, recognizing how much of a rush she is to go home. (Besides, Hae Young cooked up a really good dinner of steak frites.) To break the awkward silence, Sung Gyeom wants her to know that the apartment is his way of showing his genuine feelings for her. He has no other way to show it since all he can do right now is wait for Sang Hyo’s answer while Hae Young gets to live with her and win back her heart. In the middle of his confession, Hae Young calls and it startles Sang Hyo enough to stop listening to Sung Gyeom. At least she doesn’t pick up the phone though.

Sung Gyeom hopes that the rumor of people getting divorced in three months if they marry at Secret Hotel is true, just so he could have a chance with Sang Hyo.

They leave the restaurant and Sung Gyeom goes to get the car. At that moment, Manager Cha, who’s been lying in wait the entire time, starts his car and guns for Sang Hyo.

Hae Young calls Sang Hyo’s phone, wondering why she’s so late. A hospital nurse picks up and lets him know that there’s been an accident. Hae Young runs out of the house, knocking a bottle of wine to the floor on his way out. He speeds to the hospital and frantically searches for her in the ER.

She’s fine, sitting at the bedside of another man. It’s Sung Gyeom. He managed to save her before the car hit her, and got a few scratches from it.

Hae Young is really pissed. Sang Hyo explains that Sung Gyeom saved her life, which is why she’s at the hospital. Hae Young turns to Sung Gyeom and thanks him, which is really big of him considering he would have acted immaturely several episodes ago. He wants Sang Hyo to leave with him now, but she can’t until Sung Gyeom gets his results back. Seeing how angry (and rightfully so) Hae Young is, Sung Gyeom tells her it’s fine for her to leave. After all, this whole night has been his fault.

Equally angry, Sang Hyo talks to Hae Young outside of the ER. Hae Young first bids Sung Gyeom good bye, with the hope that they’ll never cross paths again.

Outside, Hae Young confronts Sang Hyo about her feelings. Does she truly like Sung Gyeom, or does she truly like Hae Young and wishes to go back to seven years ago? It’s unfair of her to say that his feelings change all the time when it’s really hers. Ever since they met seven years ago his feelings for her have never changed once. Sang Hyo interrupts: he left her though. Hae Young counters: “Did I really leave you? You could have come back with the plane ticket I left you. You could have waited for me.” Sang Hyo says she did wait. But it wasn’t for long. Hae Young points out that she didn’t wait until he came back. (Granted, I don’t think there was ever a note or mention of how long he was going to be gone for, so it would have been irrational of her to wait forever. At the same time, she could have just called him in New York.)

He’s now too exhausted to deal with her. So it’s up to her. She needs to look within herself and figure out whom she really wants to be with.

Meanwhile in the ER, Sung Gyeom reveals to the nurse a more severe injury in his back. When he had pushed Sang Hyo out of the way of the car, he fell on and crushed a bottle. Some pieces got embedded in his back, and so he ends up getting stitches. He wonders if what he’s doing will end up hurting Sang Hyo in the long run as he is reminded of Manager Lee’s words to stay away from her.

We finally return to Geum Bo – who, along with Soo Ah, is getting a severe lack of screen time! – who has narrowed down the suspects to Sung Gyeom and Manager Lee. Simon has an alibi for Young Mi’s murder, so it’s clear that Sung Gyeom did not order him to do the killing. As for who Manager Lee ordered around, Geum Bo narrows it down to Manager Cha. Because he’s the security team leader, he can easily delete all the footage and also know where everyone is at any time.

When Manager Lee learns that Manager Cha’s method of “taking care of it” involves hurting Sang Hyo and Sung Gyeom, he forbids Cha from ever getting involved again. However Cha has the determination to finish what has been started. Eeep… As for Sung Gyeom, his mother begs him once again to go home to the States with her. He can’t, and this time it’s because he needs to protect Sang Hyo. His investigation into his father’s death has now involved her.

Sang Hyo takes a bus all the way back to Hae Young’s apartment and finds the shattered wine glass by the dining room table. The dinner is left on the table, cold and uneaten. And Hae Young is nowhere to be found. She can only now imagine the worry he must have felt when he heard she was at the hospital without knowing a single thing about her condition.

Hae Young is at a bar, drinking his woes away. He falls asleep at the bar, and Jung Eun arrives to comfort him. How the hell she knew he’d be there, we don’t know. But boy is it annoying to see her face.

Sang Hyo sits at the dinner table, seeing Hae Young’s simple love laid out for her. She now realizes that he was being true the entire time. But is it too late?

Comments:

I’m getting really annoyed with Sang Hyo and how she’s playing these two men because of her indecision. These past two episodes really exhausted me because I was tired of seeing the back and forth between the three characters. I can understand to a certain extent that the characters all need to reach a certain breaking point, and so this back and forth has to keep happening for a while before they either give up or give an ultimatum. I’m glad that Hae Young finally had his say here because my chest would tighten up every time he argued with someone. Hae Young was someone who relented in the argument first, so thankfully he didn’t shy away from confrontation and called out Sang Hyo for what she is: selfish. She really never did anything for his sake, always expecting him to serve her first. It really stings that she never looked at herself and saw that maybe her actions seven years ago were also wrong and easily misinterpreted. There are two sides to every story and she keeps thinking hers is the one true story.

It’s really terrible to see Sang Hyo go from confused about her feelings to really selfish. To a certain extent she was always selfish, as she didn’t want to sacrifice her career and she always blamed others for things that happened to her. But she had never demanded that both men wait for her as she figured out her feelings. I thought it was extremely unfair of her to ask Hae Young to take her back after he did take her back so many times before and she never appreciated it. And then when he finally does do it for the last time, she still is drawn back to Sung Gyeom. It’s true that Sung Gyeom is also at fault for constantly approaching her when everyone has told him to lay off for the sake of the hotel. But this is Sang Hyo’s time to figure out her feelings, so she should have also been responsible for her actions and stopped going around Sung Gyeom when she could.

The best scenario would have been for her to go on a self-imposed exile away from the two men and figure out her feelings then. Maybe that can happen in next week’s episodes, although I think it might be a little too late. I almost feel like both men are too good for her now. They are too devoted to her and she fails to appreciate them.

I’m pretty much done ranting about Sang Hyo. As the main lead she’s someone I want to root for, but she has frustrated me so much in this episode that I really don’t want to like her. Hopefully there’s a good, happy ending in the works.

 

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