Like wine, love can be bitter or sweet.
Warning: Potential spoilers ahead.
Episode three ended with the doctors and soldiers facing a tough choice between following instincts or orders. The life of the VIP patient, the leader of the Arab League introduced in episode two, hangs in the balance. Mo-yeon takes matters into her own hands and proceeds with surgery, the consequences of which could have international fallout. Shi-jin‘s decision to support Mo-yeon’s defiance of military orders in order to save the leader’s life earn both of them praise from the Arab League, and in Shi-jin’s case, punishment from his superiors. He is temporarily relieved of command and is later removed from the list of those being considered for promotion.
To make matters worse, Dae-young has received orders that will separate him from his best friend as well as Myung-joo, who is determined to be by his side as she climbs through the ranks. She arrives in Urk just as Dae-young is departing. The scene is simply heartbreaking. Myung-joo slaps Dae-young, tearfully ordering him to tell her that he will return at all costs as he stands there, enduring it all with a blank expression. Just when it seems that his only parting words will be a piece of advice about mosquitoes, which is cold even for Dae-young, he hugs her and tells her to take care of herself.
The episode does a wonderful job uncovering more of Dae-young and Myung-joo’s backstory. Their relationship takes off with Myung-joo wanting to avoid one door while Dae-young wishes to peacefully close another. In episode three, the two soldiers form an agreement. Myung-joo accompanies Dae-young to his ex’s wedding and poses as his girlfriend. In exchange, Dae-young poses as her boyfriend to ward off the man her father has chosen for her. It just so happens that Yoo Shi-jin is that man, which suggests that he and Dae-young became friends thanks to Myung-joo. In this episode, we learn that, instead of ending there and parting ways after the wedding, Dae-young and Myung-joo form a friendship that blooms into romance over many, many drinks.
While Dae-young and Myung-joo deal with the past, Shi-jin and Mo-yeon meet with the Arab leader Mo-yeon and her team saved. The three briefly discuss the natures of war, peace and medicine, and President Murabat expresses his gratitude with a gift in the form of a card that will get them out of any situation. Later, Shi-jin and Mo-yeon share a ride in a gorgeous car, courtesy of the Arab League, in an attempt to spend time together. Of course, their trip is interrupted. This time the death of a comrade is what calls Shi-jin away. At this point the audience discovers a surprising link between Shi-jin and the mysterious American at the end of episode three — the apparent villain of the story, Agus. He and Shi-jin once served together on the battlefield.
Unaware of Agus’ presence in Urk, Shi-jin faces the fallout of his decision to defy orders and allow Mo-yeon to perform surgery on President Murabat. When Shi-jin’s beautiful doctor interferes with his disciplinary hearing, he finally loses a bit of his cool. He asks her why she believes he made his choice for her alone, stiffly informing her that his actions that day, and every decision he makes, include the honor, glory and duty of his comrades. The scene speaks volumes of Shi-jin’s character. He did not regret his decision and was thinking of the greater good, but he refuses to disrespect military law and ignore the punishment handed down to him. Feeling stung, Mo-yeon apologizes for allowing her worries to get in the way and leaves with tears in her eyes. No tears are shed that night, however. In an awkward encounter that takes place as Shi-jin opens a bottle of wine, Shi-jin asks Mo-yeon not to leave, stating that he wants to be with her.
Perhaps growing closer will lead Shi-jin and Mo-yeon to eventually share more than a drink? See for yourself and catch the next episode of “Descendants of The Sun” on DramaFever.