Previously on Hotel King… recap ep 1-8
Anna’s Rapid Recap
SPOILER ALERT: Do not proceed if you do not want to know what has happened so far!
Episodes 9 & 10
Cha Jae-wan has agreed to do Lee Joong-goo’s bidding once again, all for the sake of protecting Ah Mo-ne from him. She reveals to Jae-wan that she saw Joong-goo beating him, and that she can protect him. Jae-wan refuses her help and then rejects her when Mo-ne tells him that she loves him. Confused and hurt by his actions, Mo-ne has no choice but to resume a solely professional relationship with him. Jae-wan is secretly distraught from rejecting Mo-ne, but he knows it’s necessary if he is to expose Joong-goo for the monster he is.
Jae-wan’s old rival/colleague, Lay Kim, arrives at the hotel causing trouble. Lay’s plan to steal employees from Ciel for his own hotel is quickly discovered when he fails to convince Sun Woo-hyun to leave Ciel. In a fit of rage before leaving the hotel, Lay destroys the hotel’s courtyard, injuring Jae-wan and Mo-ne when they try to stop him. When Jae-wan is tending to her wounds, Mo-ne asks him if he actually hates her. Jae-wan tearfully admits that he doesn’t hate her, and that he wouldn’t be able to survive if he did.
Joong-goo thinks he’s on top of the world until someone leaves him a recording of a secret conversation he had with Jae-wan. Despite Jae-wan’s renewed loyalty, the recording convinces Joong-goo that he still may not be completely trustworthy. Chairman Ah’s doctor, who is in hiding, agrees to help Jae-wan testify against Joong-go. Already one step of him, Joong-goo kidnaps the doctor from his hiding place. As he’s rummaging through the aftermath at the doctor’s house, Jae-wan discovers an envelope hidden in a flower pot. Inside of it is a paternity test determining that Chairman Ah is NOT the father of Cha Jae-wan.
Episodes 11 & 12
Jae-wan has another DNA test done, and the results match those of the flower pot paternity test. Joong-goo had lied to him about Chairman Ah being his biological father and Mo-ne being his sister. The truth is that Jae-wan is not related to either one of them. In fear of further retaliation, as Joong-goo already had the doctor killed in a staged car accident, Jae-wan keeps the information from the paternity test to himself.
Meanwhile, a painting of Ciel’s pond, commissioned by Chairman Ah shortly before his death, is delivered to the hotel. Woo-hyun is convinced that the Chairman hid a message in the painting that provides clues to his death. After some detective work, he realizes that the clue lies in the boat in the pond. Still believing that Jae-wan is helping Mo-ne instead of Joong-goo, Woo-hyun tells him his theory about the boat. Jae-wan goes and retrieves a recording device that was hidden in the boat, but tells Woo-hyun that he couldn’t find anything there. The message Chairman Ah left on the recording was that Cha Jae-wan is the son of Lee Joong-goo.
Jae-wan is absolutely devastated to learn the truth. He goes to Mo-ne in desperation, but doesn’t tell her what he’s discovered. She takes him to a resort house away from Ciel to take his mind off of things. While they’re away, Mo-ne and Jae-wan are blissfully unaware of what’s happening at the hotel. Without the Chairwoman and GM of Ciel present, Joong-goo holds an event for a group of VIPs to conduct illegal business deals. And when the illegal event is taken down by the police, Mo-ne is arrested because she had been tricked into signing off on it, inadvertently taking full responsibility for it. Woo-hyun seeks out the Chairman of Woojin Ranch, a large farm near Ciel, to help declare Mo-ne’s innocence since he was at the event. Chairman Sun refuses to help, in spite of Woo-hyun being his son that nobody knows of. Jae-wan knows that Joong-goo is responsible for Mo-ne’s arrest. Once again, Jae-wan reluctantly goes back to Joong-goo’s side, so Mo-ne can be released from jail. Unbeknownst to Joong-goo, however, is that Jae-wan now knows his true identity as his son, and is more determined than ever to destroy his father.
Episodes 13 & 14
Because of his agreement with Joong-goo, Jae-wan reverts back to acting cold and indifferent towards Mo-ne. After being told by Jae-wan that it’s her own fault for foolishly trusting him, Mo-ne is determined to finally cut off ties with him. Mo-ne and Woo-hyun also realize that Jae-wan probably took Chairman Ah’s clue from the boat and kept it for himself, casting more suspicions on his true motives.
One of Ciel’s biggest shareholders, Roman Lee, is at the hotel to discuss Joong-goo’s plan for building a casino at Ciel. The building site for it was previously reserved by Chairman Ah for a cultural center. Since the land for either the casino or cultural center belongs to Woojin Ranch, Mo-ne takes Woo-hyun with her to negotiate with Chairman Sun, oblivious to their father-son relationship. The negotiations fail because Joong-goo already promised to pay double the amount Mo-ne offers.
Already frustrated by the bidding war over the land, Mo-ne is then given by Manager Baek a recording that incriminates both Joong-goo and Jae-wan for her father’s murder. With this information in mind, Mo-ne crashes Joong-goo’s birthday party and sneaks off to his study to look for further evidence of his guilt. Jae-wan finds her trashing the study, and whisks her away to his own house before Joong-goo catches her. There, Mo-ne continues to vent her frustration by now trashing his house, coming across a gun in his unlocked safe.
Episodes 15 & 16
After seeing the gun, Mo-ne tells Jae-wan that she knows he played a part in her father’s death. Jae-wan barely reacts to this revelation and repeats that she should have never trusted him. Mo-ne later confronts Joong-goo about killing her father, but is quickly dismissed and told that the recording was most likely fabricated. Without real evidence to convict either of them, Mo-ne is forced to retreat and plan her next move. She recruits Roman Lee for her cause and he agrees to it, or so it seems.
Jae-wan persuades Joong-goo to participate in the Ciel talent show to bolster his public image, in preparation for the casino plan’s unveiling. While his magic show performance goes smoothly, Joong-goo goes on a rant backstage, comparing the children in the audience to beggars trying to steal from him. Unknown to him, his mic was still on and everyone could hear his insults. Jae-wan had secretly bribed the magician performing alongside Joong-goo to purposely leave his mic on. The bad press coverage for Ciel continues with this incident, and Joong-goo loses support from the hotel’s directors and his own family.
Now more desperate than ever to win over Chairman Sun, Joong-goo reveals to the hotel staff that Woo-hyun is the son of Woojin Ranch’s owner, thinking that this may be used to his advantage. Roman alerts Joong-goo to the fact that Jae-wan has been secretly helping Mo-ne, and he takes this as a sign of yet another betrayal by Jae-wan. He lures the two of them to a cabin in the woods that he’s filled with caged birds, and locks them in. In the meantime, he signs a contract with Roman to secure financial backing for the casino. In reality, Roman’s betrayal of Jae-wan was orchestrated by Jae-wan himself. Once they escape from the cabin, Jae-wan has Joong-goo arrested for tax evasion and illegal loans. Right before he is taken away by the police, Jae-wan reveals one more bombshell: he knows he is Joong-goo’s son. Joong-goo vehemently denies being his father.
In a series of flashbacks, it’s revealed that the mystery sender, Baek Mi-yeon, of semi-threatening letters to Joong-goo is Manager Baek Mi-nyeo of Ciel. She, Joong-goo, and Chairman Ah were involved in a love triangle in their younger days (30+ yrs ago?). Joong-goo framed her for his own embezzlement crimes at Ciel, and Chairman Ah was responsible for turning her in to the police. She had a son at the time, but the identity of the father has not been revealed. After Joong-goo is arrested, Roman reveals to Jae-wan and Mo-ne that Manager Baek is his mother. Roman has the same wings tattoo on his back as Jae-wan…so could they be brothers? Is Manager Baek the mother of Jae-wan?
Thanks for reading these two brief-ish recaps of episodes 1-16 of Hotel King! I’ll be doing individual episode recaps for the second half of the series. Get ready for more betrayals, hidden recordings, secret sons, and pottery/bird-related drama.