K-Drama Couch Recap: “Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung” Episode 9

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Romance is blooming in Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung, and yes, it can’t be helped to ask for more.

It’s about time for some cutesy to happen for Prince Yi Rim and rookie historian Goo Hae Ryung. After all, the calm before the storm is best served in heartfelt love declaration.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung

All Photos From MBC

Episode Recaps

Ep 01Ep 02Ep 03Ep 04Ep 05Ep 06,Ep 07, Ep 08

Special Note: Episode count follows Netflix’ format. Korean broadcast follows 4-episode run weekly

Prince Yi Rim’s request

After the fuss caused by the King, Prince Yi Rim heads to Neokseodang where the Queen Dowager is waiting. Meanwhile, Officer Min reminds Hae Ryung of her job to record everything that she sees and hears when she hesitates on whether writing what just happened with the King and his adopted sons.

Appeasing his heavy heart, the Queen Dowager tells Prince Yi Rim how proud she is for the work he did. But, she reminds him to be wary of his actions to be not on the bad side of the ill-tempered King. Promising to heed her words, Prince Yi Rim agrees.

Taking the opportunity, Prince Yi Rim also asks permission from her grandmother if he can live outside the palace. However, the Queen Dowager strongly protests citing that the palace is his home.

Officer Min greets his father upon his return who insists on him getting a more powerful job. But, he politely declines and walks away. At Hae Ryung’s house, her nanny keeps on giving her food thinking about the hardships she might have gone through.

Alone in her room, she organizes her notes and recounts Prince Yi Rim’s not so welcoming meeting with the King. Back at Neokseodang, the prince paces as he surmises in the quiet night.


It’s a Joseon-wide no sleeping ban for the people. According to an old-age custom, there is a day called “gyeongsin” that would make sleeping shorten a person’s life span.

Sulking at the officers drinking somewhere, Sahee steals a wine bottle and the female historian goes for a secret outdoor drink. Under the influence of soju, the girls bond and share stories about their lives. Even Sahee openly explains how she refused her privileged life because she does not want to live like a flower, that’s why she became a historian.

Sharing the same beliefs, the historians go on the annoying setup of how their parents get to decide the person they will marry after a few letter exchange. Chatting about different marriage views, they agree on not wanting to marry someone based on family credentials, but because of love. They all cutely agree of also wanting to date a handsome and crazy guy without inhibitions once in their lives.

Hae Ryung and Prince Yi Rim’s accidental overnight date

Trying to keep herself awake, Hae Ryung does a few stretching and was not aware that Prince Yi Rim is observing  from afar.

After greeting him, she explains about the complex idea of gyeongsin which led to her forced to be awake all night. Chuckling, Prince Yi Rim wonders why smart Hae Ryung follows the urban legend. Riding on gyeongsin‘s opportunity, he asks her to accompany him all night since he has done a lot of sins.

With the night breeze fanning on their faces, the two steal glances at each other while fighting to keep awake. However, their weary bodies give in. Snapping back to reality after she dozes off, Hae Ryung finds Prince Yi Rim sprawled on the floor asleep. Tracing his face with her finger tip, Hae Ryung stares fondly at him.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung

The morning after

In the morning, Prince Yi Rim wakes up first to the sight of Hae Ryung sleeping on his arm. She even moves closer to his chest to get a comfortable position.

The prince wakes her up, but she struggles to process the situation. Half awake, she finally realizes where she is. Just then, Sambo and the court ladies arrive seeing the two at obviously they-share-the-night-together looks.

As usual, Sambo lectures the prince of his careless action, but the prince can only mutter how Hae Ryung smells nice.

The Crown Princess’ Demand

Because of gyeongsin, the historians can barely wake them up at work. However, a surprise visit from the Crown Princess straighten them up. Together with two female historians, the Crown Princess head to where Crown Prince Jin is.

Refusing to wait for Prince Jin’s promised visit, she interrupts his conversation with a government official. Stubborn on her stance, the Crown Princess spit icy remarks on how female historians were not sent in her palace. She gets straight to the point and whines about the constantly cancelled night for them to produce an heir.

Ranting, the princess who has spent 15 years of her life in the palace, has used the leverage of how she took the blow of not being able to conceive an heir. That people talk behind her back citing how the calamities is caused by her inability to give a royal heir.

Prince Jin apologizes for not understanding what she feels. But the princess demands only a date for them to reconcile it.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung

Royal Love Quarrel

Taking the blow of the fierce attack of the Crown Princess to Prince Jin, the female historians went back to the office exhausted.

An urgent caucus erupts whether to include the royal love quarrel on the records. Having opposing views, the team leader seeks a higher government official for opinion; who seeks his senior for his opinion. However, he was advised to go to another higher office.

Just when they are in utter confusion, the Crown Prince arrived to speak with Officer Min. As old friends, Prince Jin asks for a favor to have the incident be removed, but the stoic historian refuses. Knowing his friend’s conviction, even when he threatens him that it is an order, Officer Min did not relent making Prince Jin just helplessly smile.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung

Prince Yi Rim’s love analysis

Back at his room, Prince Yi Rim uses Sambo for a simulation on what might have happened last night. Having no idea of how Hae Ryung ended up on his arm since he dozed off first.

He asks the court ladies of their opinion, and they happily confirm that it was Hae Ryung who crossed the line between them. The prince who wants to hear those words beams thinking how Hae Ryung is already developing feelings for him.

Sambo can’t take Prince Yi Rim’s oblivious act anymore and quips how from the looks of it, it is the other way around. That is based on how he always analyzing everything about her. He proposes to help the prince in winning the heart of Hae Ryung through the eunuch’s secret method passed down from old generations.

Sambo’s courtship plan

To realize Sambo’s proposed plan, Hae Ryung was summoned to his room. Prince Yi Rim moves to where she is until she gets cornered on a wall. Before he executes the next stage though, Hae Ryung escapes his arms blocking her and asks if he is feeling unwell. She apologizes for sleeping on his arm, but begs not to scold her like what he just did. Promising she will keep her distance, she left his room.

Struggling to process what he should do, Prince Yi Rim follows and calls Hae Ryung who stops her track. Explaining he is not angry nor mad, he looks in her eyes and mutters how he does not mind keeping her near him. He tells her not to distance herself away from him leaving a bewildered look from Hae Ryung’s face.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung

Confronting Realities

Hae Ryung’s nanny finds her washing her face profusely and wonders if something is bothering her. Wanting an honest opinion to the confusion created by Prince Yi Rim, she confesses about what the prince told her. Upset for not being straightforward to her Hae Ryung, the nanny explains the meaning of Prince Yi Rim’s implied love confession. Processing what she just learned, Hae Ryung thought about why the prince cornered him earlier.

Jae Gyung meets SSC Min to discuss affairs about Mohwa, whom the older officer believes to be gathering a strong following. He orders Jae Gyung to be in charge of the case, but puts his trusted assassin to tail him. However, Jae Gyung knows about SSC Min’s ploy.

At night, Prince Jin visits his princess to apologize for everything.

Prince Jin’s Gifts

The next morning the female historians were summoned to the Crown Prince’s palace. Thinking it was about the lovers quarrel record, one historian begs for his mercy right away.

Chuckling, Crown Prince Jin asks them to sit and offers an expensive red writing brush gift. Reminding them to always remember their responsibilities, he offers the writing brush traditionally used by female historians.

Sahee asks if he really does not hold any grudge towards them. Prince Jin responds how he still feels humiliated, but he knows that they are just doing their jobs. As an extra bonus, he sends the historians away for a day off.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung

Female historians just wanna have fun

Rising to his seat, Prince Yi Rim welcomes his brother who asks him to prepare to shoot arrows. Remembering the face he lost last time in front of the historians, he declines.

Prince Jin assures him not to worry since he sent the female historians to a nature trip at Sukjeongmun. Sambo who knows the place to be a bathing place of the soldiers after military training relays the information. He adds, how it is a famous sight-seeing place for women who wants to enjoy a visual feast of well-built men.

Beaming, the Crown Prince is happy for his amazing gift. However, Prince Yi Rim, realizes Hae Ryung will be there. Imagining Hae Ryung having fun at the valley made Prince Yi Rim feel agitated. It leads him to getting a rare bulls’-eye shot in the process.

When the girls forgot the charcoal, Hae Ryung volunteers to pick some dried stalks nearby, but the rain suddenly pours. Deciding to go back to the valley against the rain, she walks and gets surprised when someone covers her. When Hae Ryung checks who shielded her, she meets Prince Yi Rim’s worried face.

Episode 9 Afterthoughts

I would have to commend Cha Eun Woo on that I-don’t-mind-keeping-you-near-me scene. It really drew a sweet sigh on me. Additionally, his-world-is-crushing-face wildly imagining Hae Ryung’s valley naughty sight-seeing activity.

Episode 9 of Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung also presents the underlying situation of Prince Jin’s enmity to SSC Min, which I think is the reason why he constantly evades conceiving an heir with the Crown Princess, who is the daughter of his enemy.

Nothing much happened in this episode but it significantly signals how the test of character will proceed for Prince Yi Rim and Goo Hae Ryung.

Rookie Historian Goo Hae Ryung airs on MBC every Wednesday and Thursday.

Image Credit: MBC
Watch on Netflix

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