In this episode, the good guys get very close to uncovering the real criminal, responsible for the murders 30 years ago. Kwang Ho figures it out before others thanks to his outstanding detective intuition and 10-year expertise in the field. He fights to the death with Dr. Mok, but this confrontation has an unexpected ending that none saw coming. Meanwhile, Jae Yi has to come to terms with the truth about Kwang Ho being her father.
EPISODE 12 RECAP
Jung Ho Young gets visited by Dr. Mok, but doesn’t recognize him. At first, he thinks that it must be another officer wanting to know about the case. Dr. Mok smirks and asks how did he murder the victims. Jung Ho Young tells him, but doctor adds his own details, outing himself as the real killer.
This fact surprises Jung Ho Young, who laughs at the whole situation until Dr. Mok reminds him of the sentence he’ll receive. Even if he’s prosecuted for only 2 cases, Jung Ho Young will be locked up in jail for the rest of his life, just like he was locked up in the mental hospital in the past. It was an obvious provocation and Jung Ho Young bites the bait.
He remembers his horrible time at the mental hospital and his mother’s words about paying for the sins he committed. Dr. Mok leaves after telling Jung Ho Young that he can escape from here only if he dies. His speech is enough to give Jung Ho Young an idea about committing suicide. That night he prepares a message for Kwang Ho and hangs himself in the cell. He was found and transported to the hospital, but died within 30 minutes.
Jae Yi together with Sun Jae and Kwang Ho arrive at the hospital where Jung Ho Young died. Sung Shik, Min Ha and Tae Hee are already there. Kwang Ho asks the prison guard if there was anything that might’ve affected Jung Ho Young to commit suicide, but the guard doubt’s it since the criminal was held in solitary confinement.
Jung Ho Young did leave a letter for Kwang Ho, who seems surprised to hear about it. There’s only one word written – Noel, but no one knows what it could mean. Dr. Mok enjoys the beautiful weather at his office. He’s in an exceptionally good mood when Sun Jae pays him a visit. Doctor asks why he came and Sun Jae tells him about Jung Ho Young’s suicide and how he might’ve seen the other killer’s face.
Dr. Mok is curious how they figured out that he was a witness and gets an answer that it was all thanks to Kwang Ho. He saw the culprit smoking in the tunnel, but Jung Ho Young was a nonsmoker. It suspicious though, because it happened 30 years ago, so how does Kwang Ho know about it. Only Dr. Mok and the detective that chased him in the tunnel could possibly know.
That’s when doctor remembers what Jung Ho Young told him – “Who will recognize whom first?”. Sun Jae doesn’t get a chase to explain the situation because Kwang Ho comes to pick him up. Dr. Mok stares at him in shock, having finally recognized Kwang Ho from 30 years ago.
As our duo leaves, Kwang Ho asks if Sun Jae told Dr. Mok that he came from the past since the doc did an autopsy on the young Park Kwang Ho. Sun Jae didn’t tell him anything and ensures Kwang Ho that doctor can be trusted. Yeah, right… We get a flashback of young Dr. Mok, who attacked Kwang Ho in the tunnel. He thought that he killed the officer back then. Back in the present doctor laugh incredulously, saying that it’s nice to see him again.
Jae Yi tells Hye Won that Jung Ho Young witnessed the murder 30 years ago. He adapted the MO and tried to imitate the killer, that’s why the murders were so similar. She finds it strange that Jung Ho Young committed suicide. If he planned to do it from the start, he would’ve done it earlier.
Hye Won thinks that he wanted to play games with them until the end, without telling them any crucial information, but Jae Yi finds it unlikely since he left them a note. She wonders why would he do that and leave the note to Kwang Ho specifically.
Jae Yi visits Dr. Mok to play chess and ask his opinion about Jung Ho Young’s suicide. He says that some inmates can’t stand being locked up in a cell. Since he was once locked up in a mental hospital, he must’ve been reminded of that time. Sometimes memories can cause more harm than good.
Jae Yi comments how she would’ve preferred to have some of her memories back since she can’t remember her childhood. She shares that she was adopted and lived in England, but someone’s looking for her now. If she had her memories, she could figure out who that person might be, but she has no clue. Dr. Mok tells her to wait and see because the memories will return to her eventually when the time is right.
The team is having a meeting about the recent development. Sung Shik tells them that the prosecutors will drop the seven cases from the past and Jung Ho Young’s case is practically closed. He suggests investigating the other murders in secret. Kwang Ho fills the board with the information they have on the unknown killer. He suggests looking through the past cases thoroughly to get an idea what kind of person they are dealing with.
Kwang Ho tells everyone about each victim and admits that their investigation back then was a total failure. The victims were all either teenagers or women in their 20s, strangled with stockings and had dots on their heels. The estimated time for murders was always around 9 pm. The two recent victims upped the murder count to eight in total. The bodies weren’t found near the roads, which is different from Jung Ho Young’s cases and means that the killer stalked his victims.
Sun Jae suggests gathering information about the latest murderers to find out where the killer might’ve spotted the victims. Min Ha wonders why did the criminal start to kill again after 30 years and Kwang Ho thinks that something must’ve triggered him. Tae Hee and Min Ha will try to find out where the latest two victims were at the day of the crime, while Kwang Ho and Sun Jae will try to figure out the meaning of the note “Noel” that Jung Ho Young left behind. Sung Shik will look into the ink from Shinhae Chemicals that the killer uses to mark the victims.
Kwang Ho asks to talk with Sun Jae and Sung Shik. He thinks that the other Park Kwang Ho’s death might’ve been the trigger. Sun Jae thinks that it doesn’t make sense for the killer to start his killing spree again after he got rid of his obstacle – Park88, who knew his identity. Sung Shik suggests to ask Jae Yi, but Kwang Ho is against it. They tell him that she is Kwang Ho’s lost daughter and Sung Shik is obviously shocked but insists on asking her for help this one time.
Kwang Ho reluctantly agrees and Sun Jae asks Jae Yi to do some profiling work based on the notes he wrote about the past cases. She asks to get some more information about the victims from Sung Shik since he participated in the original investigation. Sun Jae tells Kwang Ho to write down any details he remembers and send it all to Jae Yi.
Min Ha and Tae Hee asks Yoon Da Young’s co-worker why did the girl go to Haein River. She answers that Da Young always went there when she was frustrated after dealing with rude clients at the bar. The other victim, Ju Hee, stayed at the playground instead of going home to study for her exams like her friends did.
Sung Shik finds out that the ink from Shinhae Chemicals was used for paints, manicures, tires and fountain pens. Sun Jae and Kwang Ho try to figure out the meaning of the word “Noel” and Kwang Ho remembers that the necklace of one of the victims had her baptismal name engraved on it. He thinks that Noel might also be a baptismal name of the culprit.
They find a total of 5 cathedrals that existed in Hwayang in 1986 and check each one of them to find a list of people with such a name. After checking all the potential suspects, they are left with the last one – Kim Gyung Tae. The guy is a local and smokes, so Sun Jae asks him to provide an alibi for the days of two last murders. He shows them the CCTV from his store, proving his innocence.
Gyung Tae wonders why they are searching for someone with the name Noel and mentions that there was another man with that name at the cathedral he went to. He doesn’t remember his real name, but the man was strange. There was a soldier at the cathedral, who fought the Vietnam War and told the local kids how many people he killed, but the only one who listened to him was that other Noel guy. After the soldier passed away, Noel stopped coming to church.
Later that day Dr. Mok is in his office, wondering if the reason Kwang Ho didn’t have registered documents of fingerprints was because he traveled in time. He never imagined that such a game would be set up for him with Seo Yi Soo’s son and the detective from 30 years ago. He accepts the challenge, though. Jae Yi studies the victims and wonders why did the killer mark his prey with dots.
Our team gathers together that evening to share the information they found. Min Ha thinks that the killer didn’t follow his victims for a long time, otherwise he would’ve been caught on the CCTVs. The chief of the police station comes to check what they are doing, thinking they are slacking off. He tells them to back up the others, who went to solve a gambling case.
Sung Shik takes Min Ha and Tae Hee to back up the other officers, leaving Kwang Ho and Sun Jae to investigate our case. They are about to go home for the day, but Dr. Mok drops by the station. He tries to pry information regarding the case, but Kwang Ho doesn’t allow him to look at the investigation board. He notices that the doc carries a fountain pen with him as the guy leaves.
Kwang Ho goes to check on Jae Yi before going home. He checks her windows and doors to see if her apartment is safe and stares at the whistle necklace after noticing it on the table. Jae Yi sees his reaction and remembers how shocked he seemed when he found her in the woods and saw the necklace for the first time.
She doesn’t beat around the bush and asks him if he recognizes the whistle. He lies that he never saw it before and hurriedly leaves. As he stands outside of her apartment, he apologizes for everything, unable to tell her the truth.
The next day Sun Jae and Kwang Ho go to the prison to receive Jung Ho Young’s autopsy report. His case is closed since it was proven that he committed suicide. The prison representative tells them that there was one person who visited Jung Ho Young on the day of his death. It was doctor Mok Jin Woo. Both our guys are shocked at this newfound piece of information and go straight to the doctor for answers. Mok Jin Woo tells them that he was curious about something and indeed visited Jung Ho Young.
Kwang Ho asks what was he so interested in. Doc, in turn, asks if they’re interrogating him, but answers the question anyway. He went to ask Jung Ho Young about the way he choked his victim to compare it to the other two murders. The way the victims were choked differed, so it confirmed his assumption that there were two killers. Kwang Ho doesn’t buy it and finds it very suspicious that Jung Ho Young decided to commit suicide right after meeting Dr. Mok. Sun Jae takes Kwang Ho away, but the gauntlet has been thrown already.
Jae Yi has another lecture where she tells her students about the murderer from 30 years ago. He lived as a normal person for the past 30 years but started killing again. She asks her students why. One of them thinks that there must be an important reason that made him kill again. Jae Yi agrees, saying that behind every murder is a reason.
Back at home Jae Yi tries to find the reason why our killer started his murder spree again. Da Young was murdered two weeks after Kim Young Ja’s remains were found, until then, he didn’t know that one of his past victims survived. That could’ve been the trigger, but it also means that the killer is someone within their circle, otherwise, he wouldn’t know about Kim Young Ja.
The next day Kwang Ho comes to the station and Sun Jae tells him that Jae Yi found the trigger for the murders. The team has a secret meeting where they arrange all the policemen involved in Kim Young Ja’s case on the evidence board. Sun Jae explains that based on Jae Yi’s findings the culprit started killing again after finding out that one of his previous victims survived.
The others are skeptical that a police officer would be involved, but Sun Jae suggests a background check first. Since the cases are old they can narrow down the potential suspects to those older than 40. Sung Shik allows them to secretly look into it. Kwang Ho suspects doctor Mok, but doesn’t say anything for now.
The others narrow down the suspects to two people. Sung Shik, Min Ha and Tae Hee visit one of them, while Sun Jae talks with the other. Kwang Ho is at the police station, still trying to figure out who this Noel might be. He checks the list of products from Shinhae Chemicals and finds that they make fountain pens like the one Dr. Mok uses.
He immediately asks another detective to find Dr. Mok’s information. It appears that he moved to Hwayang in 1980 and was around in 1986 as well. That confirms Kwang Ho’s suspicions and he storms off to find the murderer. Jae Yi is still trying to figure out why did the culprit mark his victims with dots. She suddenly remembers that when she was in the hospital Kwang Ho said that everything was his fault. She wonders what he could’ve meant by that. Her friend from England calls to say that she found the notes about the person who was looking for her.
Kwang Ho runs to Dr. Mok’s office but he’s not there. He searches for the fountain pen and finds it in his lab coat. It has the name Noel engraved on it. Oh please, please just tell someone about it, dang it! Kwang Ho suddenly gets a call from an unknown number. It’s Dr. Mok who tells him that they sure have an interesting connection. He suggests to meet at the tunnel to settle things and tells Kwang Ho to come alone unless he wants to endanger Sun Jae’s and Jae Yi’s lives.
Jae Yi goes to Yeonju Police Station to meet the detective who looked for her. He tells her that it was Sun Jae who asked to find Park Yeon Ho. Sun Jae tries to reach Kwang Ho, but he doesn’t answer the phone. Their two suspects had an alibi so the investigation is at a standstill right now. Jae Yi calls Sun Jae and asks to meet.
Meanwhile, Kwang Ho arrives at the tunnel, where Dr. Mok is already waiting for him. He appears to be completely calm while Kwang Ho fumes inside. The doc asks if Kwang Ho really traveled through time and is happy to hear a confirmation because even if he were to die here, there will be no records left. People would think that the real Park Kwang Ho died and nothing would change.
Kwang Ho asks if he lured and killed Park88 the same way, but the doctor replies that he gave the guy a warning first. We get to see a flashback where Park88 came to find doctor Mok. He saw that doctor used a different syringe to treat a patient, Kim Pil Soo, at a welfare center where he volunteered. The man passed away the next day.
Park88 tried to find out what it was that Dr. Mok used on the patient, but he needed a warrant for that. In the next few days, he was at a stakeout near Dr. Mok’s apartment. He received a call from him and got called out to meet, threatening to kill his grandmother. Park88 immediately went to check on his grandmother but found her dead.
He carefully walked outside, but Dr. Mok appeared behind him and injected some drug into his neck. They fought outside, but when it became clear that Dr. Mok was stronger, Park88 ran away in his car. That’s how he got chased and killed by Dr. Mok. Back in the present, he says that when he first saw our Kwang Ho, he was so surprised he almost laughed because one Park Kwang Ho was already dead by then.
Jae Yi meets with Sun Jae and asks why didn’t he tell her that he knows her real name. He tells her that he isn’t the person who should answer that. Sun Jae tells her the truth that Kwang Ho is her father. She finds it ridiculous since he’s younger than her, but Sun Jae tells her that Kwang Ho came from the past.
Meanwhile, Kwang Ho and Dr. Mok are fighting in the tunnel. The doc gets out a syringe and tries to inject it in Kwang Ho, who tries to stop him. It comes down to who will overpower whom, but Kwang Ho manages to push him away and in the process, travels back in time.
They are both surprised, thinking that the other got away. Kwang Ho runs through the tunnel, trying to chase after Dr. Mok, whom he thinks ran away. Only when he meets a man on an old bike and hears old songs does he realize what actually happened. He looks around and sees the old tunnel from 1986.
No way! How the hell did he travel back in time at such a moment? He didn’t even say goodbye to Sun Jae or catch the killer. How will that work from now on? I wonder if we’ll have parallel timelines now or maybe Kwang Ho will decide to go back to the present to catch Dr. Mok for good so that the guy can’t harm Jae Yi and Sun Jae. Anyway, that was something I haven’t expected, so I’m still in shock that he traveled back.
I liked the fact that Jae Yi got to know the truth about Kwang Ho, but I wonder if she’ll believe it. Sun Jae’s a special case since his father recognized Kwang Ho and Sung Shik also proved it with the old photo, but with Jae Yi it might take more than that to convince her. Would be nice if she finds out the truth about her parents. I’m still sad that Yeon Sook had to die like that and her only daughter doesn’t even remember her.
Doctor Mok remains an interesting murderer and I want to find out how and why he started killing people. One thing’s sure is that he does have a reason to justify his crimes. I thought that he only murdered women, but the flashback of the case young Park Kwang Ho investigated messes up that assumption. Dr. Mok killed an old man back then, so there might be more victims no one knows about. I guess he picks people whom he deems unworthy to kill them off.