07 July 2013

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Special Affairs Team TEN 2 - Episode 10 (Recap)

Posted by Kakashi Sensei on July 07, 2013
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? I cannot wait for the final! Episode 10 is the last one before the double-whopper and maybe that is why I got a bit impatient with it all. The "filler" episodes are good and nice and all (at least some of them), but what I am really interested in is the main story. There has been no advancement in the main storyline for a while now, we know that Ji-hoon will have to face the truth eventually (as in next episode), and the case didn't exactly rock my boat either. All I can say is that it is about mistrust and guilt and the TEN Team solves it very, very smoothly. Onwards we go! 
 Special Affairs Team TEN 2 - Episode 10
15년 - 15 Years

There is a white car at an otherwise empty lakeside. We hear that somebody is calling 911 and a female hoarsely and slowly whispers: "save me ... save me ..." - but too late ... she is already dead, her eyes wide open.
In the conference room, boss-boss Jeong shows Yeo Ji-hoon some slides about the unfortunate event: It's to be his next case. Cause there is something the media doesn't know: the phone call between the now dead woman and the 911 dispatch guy doesn't end right after the "save me ... save me ...". No; she added a "... You!" It seems she recognized somebody right before her death! Strangely, though, the car doors were locked from the inside, and there were no signs of an intruder. Could she have meant the passenger, then? Ji-hoon asks. No - that woman died even before the driver.

We have two bodies in the autopsy room. In both of them, tetrodotoxin was found. (Ha! Even I know what that is! It's globefish poison!) Both ladies got a lethal dose of this colorless, tasteless, odorless wonder-drug. That also explains why the caller was so short of breath: That's a clear sign of paralysis, which is an effect of this drug. Ye-ri notices the wide open eyes on one of the victims and switches to lecture-mode to tell them that this is a sign she was conscious until her very last breath. Autopsy lady coolly says: did she study toxicology, now? Buahaha. That gets her a slightly puzzled look from Ji-hoon, who probably doesn't know these two ladies don't exactly like each other. Because of him, mainly.
Autopsy Lady tells them about a thing that she finds noteworthy: The toxin was found in the stomach of one of the victims - but in the blood of the other.

The TEN Team (minus Min-ho) investigates the crime scene. Do-shik mumbles to himself that it is quite remarkable that the two ladies, who seem to have been good friends, came from such different professional backgrounds: one was a bar hostess, the other a doctor. Ye-ri and Ji-hoon, who are inspecting the car, discuss that the mud around the car was found on Kim Min-sun's shoes (she is the dead doctor). Ji-hoon thinks it's strange she went back into the car and locked the door, even though she should know that one must breath fresh air when poisoned.
Min-ho, who is inspecting the fish restaurant the two went to before they came to the lake, reports over the phone that all the globefish at the restaurant is home-bred ... thus non-poisonous. In other words, it's fake globefish and either the restaurant owner is a swindler or he was swindled. At that moment, Do-shik comes towards them ... he has found a black plastic bag in the water and it contains a syringe. It seems confirmed: this is a murder case.
Back at their offices, we learn that the criminal poisoned canned coffee, from which one of the victims drank (the Hostess, her name is Oh Hyun-joo), trying to make it look as if it were related to the globefish restaurant. But Kim Min-sun (the dead doctor) did not drink any coffee ... so she probably got the poison injected through the syringe. But why did she walk around outside and then went and sought refuge in her car? It is possible that the fear in her dead eyes comes from seeing the killer standing outside, the team thinkds. But why are there no traces of him/her at the lake? And how did the killer know these two would be heading to the restaurant and the lake? It must have been someone really close to them.
The clue they understand the least is a discarded photo (maybe the criminal threw it away): It shows two high school girls that are posing in front of the Gimpo International Airport. On the back of the photo, someone has written "I AM".

I AM 

Ji-hoon visits the deceased doctor's husband Lee Jong-hoon. Who doesn't seem to be grieving deeply, if you ask me. Ji-hoon asks whether anyone had a grudge against his wife, i.e. due to a medical accident? No! the husband says, she had exceptional skills. She even had job offers from America. And she declined all of them, Ji-hoon wonders? Well, it was because of her fear of flying (Aerophobia) - which kept her back in her career. So, when did his wife start taking tranquilizers? 6 months ago. He prescribed them because she had insomnia. And she was always close with Oh Hyun-joo? The husband seems a little agitated as he says yes, they were best friends; since childhood. But when Ji-hoon shows him the photo with the two girls, she husband claims to have never seen it before.
Ye-ri is investigating the bar in which Oh Hyun-hoo worked. She asks a co-worker about debts, loans, that kind of stuff. The hostess just laughs: She obviously doesn't know how much money they make at a place like this (innocent face from Ye-ri). Sure, about 5 years ago, the business was unstable and many bars had to close. But not them, because the "doctor lady" brought her colleagues over to help raise their income. They were such great friends, Kim Min-sun and Oh Hyun-joo! the hostess says, envious. 
Do-shik is at the doctor-couple's home. Min-ho calls... and tells him off for not picking up faster! haha, love these two ... Min-ho reports that the toxin was only found in ONE can of coffee. After hanging up, Do-shik discovers something: There is an ashtray on the vanity table! Aha ... it seems that the two did not sleep in the same room (his reasoning: cause women can't stand the smell of cold cigarettes). Separation at this early age means it's either money issues or another woman ... or both.
Do-shik goes on to snoop around in the office next. And he discovers an envelope, which is stuck to the bottom of a drawer. There are pictures inside ... judging from Do-shik's expression, they are quite something!
Aaaaaaand the doctor-husband Lee Jong-hoon is in the interrogation room, with Do-shik; who is trying to get him to confess to the murder by putting the pieces of the puzzle together in front of him. So ... he only poisoned one can because he only wanted to kill one person. And that was his wife, Kim Min-sun. Do-shik shows Lee Jong-hoon one of the photos he found in the envelope ... uh-oh. They show Mr. Doctor in bed! But NOT with his wife. Double uh-oh. With Oh Hyun-joo! Do-shik continues: getting the toxin would have been so easy for him as a doctor... and he wanted Oh Hyung-hoo to kill his wife with it so that they could be together? Unfortunately, Oh Hyung-joo ended up drinking the coffee by mistake ... so he took a syringe and killed his wife! What a wild theory!

"Enough", says the doctor. "I took this picture. And I sent it to her."

And flashback: About 5 years ago, Oh Hyun-joo started to be in their life all the time. He didn't like his wife hanging out with her, because Hyun-joo worked as a bar hostess. He didn't interfere though, because his wife was going through a difficult time. But then ... we see how beautiful Oh Hyun-joo comes by the house when his wife is gone and seduces him. Not that he resists strongly. After that, she came every single time his wife was out of town. But he finds out that his wife doesn't actually go to any meetings, but just stays in hotels during that time. Wut? Is she cheating on him too? Or is she going there to be out of the way? This is weird ...

The husband thinks so too and that is why he showed her the pictures of him and Oh Hyun-joo in bed: to find out what her intentions were. But she just smiled coldly and remarked that he doesn't look like he didn't enjoy it. He wanted to end their marriage, but she sayd that they cannot divorce. Not yet, anyway. And she put the photos into the envelope that Do-shik later finds. "From that point on, we were just married on paper", the sad doctor says.
Do-shik remarks later he has never heard of friends sharing a husband. I do agree that this sounds very, very strange ... aaaaaaaand Min-ho is back (from wherever he was) and he has news. The doctor's handwriting doesn't match the handwriting on the photo. Plus, Ji-hoon is certain that this guy is not the criminal too. But what in hell's name was going on with these three people?

Ye-ri is putting on gloves and goes into Oh Hyun-joo's place. All her belongings are packed away in boxes ... so she unpacks everything. She murmurs "I am ... I am ..." to herself in the process and starts playing around with a dictionary she has found on a pile of books. "I am .... cute? Yes, I guess I am kind of cute", she says to herself in the mirror. Go be cute with Ji-hoon! There aren't many episodes left!
The next word that catches her eye is "murderer" and that makes her think long and hard (about what exactly? How the word needs to be pronounced?), until the housekeeper shows up, touches her shoulder, and both women scream like crazy, frightening each other.

The woman picks up the photo with he two school-girls that Ye-ri has dropped during the screaming fit and says: "Ah, it was here". Oh what, she has seen the pic before? Of course, the housekeeper says. About 6 months ago, Oh Hyun-joo had a nervous breakdown, just from looking at the picture that somebody sent to her. "I put the rest of it somewhere", she says and looks around. Huh! What! There is a rest? Yes, but unfortunately, she has put it into the garbage. And Ye-ri runs out as fast as she can - and just catches the garbage truck. Nice, Ye-ri. Nice.
Later, she trudges into the Bunker-office, obviously super-smelly. She goes straight to Ji-hoon's office, who, to his credit, doesn't even flinch. She puts the picture on his desk ... including an additional bit that Oh Hyun-joo cut off. It shows a third girl. The message on the back now reads ...


I Am ... Back

What the heck does that mean? Ji-hoon thinks the third girl has the answer. And Min-ho, the smarty-pants, has already found her identity: Im Se-jin, age 33. Unfortunately ... she is dead. She died 6 months ago in a fire, after living in America for years. It seems she was killed: footprints were found at the scene. Plus: a sheet of calendar paper, on which the 29 June is circled in red, was found in her hand. It seems it is a clue left by the dead woman. The investigators back then came up with nothing. Sure, cause they're not the TEN Team.
But the TEN Team now knows that the two cases are connected: Kim Min-sun started taking tranquilizers 6 months ago. That matches Im Se-jin's death date. And Oh Hyun-joo received the photo 6 months ago. So it is pretty clear that they all knew the murderer.

After Im Se-jin went to America, there was no more contact between the women. So the connection between them must have been established 15 years ago, before she left. And indeed, they all went to the same school but, strangely enough, all of them were transferred .. to very different and far away high schools in different districts! And there is another strange thing ... the 29th June does not have relevance for all three of them. The two other women marked down the 12th June and 26th June on their phones.

15년-15 Years

Ye-ri and Ji-hoon are at the girls' high school, talking to somebody who knew them back then (is she a teacher at this school now?). She recognizes the three in the picture immediately: They were the three princesses, the most popular girls in school, wealthy, pretty, and smart. So, why did they transfer 15 years ago?
 
Flashback: The 3 Princesses were bullying a student, named Park Soon-young. It ends very tragically: when they take her favorite scarf (a gift from her dead mom) away from her and throw it out the window, she climbs out to get it back ... and falls off, to her death. Did one of the girls push her? Maybe. Maybe not. All of their testimonies were the same: it was an accident.
Does she remember the date? Ji-hoon asks the witness. Oh yes, she does: It was June 12.

Oh shoot ... that's the day Kim Min-sun and Oh Hyun-joo were murdered! And now they know that it is also the day the statute of limitations ended for the Park Soon-young case.

And they have w new suspect: The dead girl Park Soon-young has a younger brother named Park Joon-young. Both grew up with their grandmother, who passed away shortly after Soon-young's death - and the brother had to go to a foster home. He became a fisherman after.

Ha! Fisherman!! Globefish-toxin!!! 

2주-2 weeks

Min-ho and Ye-ri look a pile of case-files, but apparently, Ye-ri isn't working hard enough for Min-ho, who is complaining loudly. But Ye-ri is thinking about the dates. What happened on the 26th June? But Min-ho already has the answer: If it was about the statute of limitations, it extends when one leaves the country. That probably wasn't the case for Kim Min-sun, though, cause she had a severe fear of flying... but Ye-ri remembers the talk she had with the woman-hostess and the doctor-husband. And she suspects that something happened 5 years ago.
Autopsy Lady meets Ji-hoon on the rooftop. She has news for him (and a coffee). There are no needle marks on the body. Are there any other ways to get the poison into the body then? Yes, she says ... when it is breathed in (and somebody has to say it: there is not enough romance in this series! I'm even beginning to ship these two now)
Ye-ri is visiting the doctor husband again and wants to know what happened 5 years ago. Mr. Doctor tells her that his wife was invited to a lecture, an important one. It was an honor for her to be invited at such a young age. In another flashback, he tells her to stay, with her fear of flying and all, but she screams at him that she needs to go. And she adds, a bit calmer, that he must keep it a secret from Oh Hyun-joo. Ye-ri checks with immigration: Indeed, Min-sun went abroad, for two weeks; which means her statue of limitations ended two weeks after Hyun-joo's. And, oh shit - Hyun-joo found out about it! And used it against Min-sun for five whole years. Min-sun stayed in a hotel (possibly while Hyun-joo was cheating on her with her husband), drinking and screaming all night. This entire time ... she was living in hell.
But ... why did Hyun-joo mark June 26th in her phone?

Inside of Kim Min-sun's car, forensics has found tetrodoxotin on the seat and on the floor. Ji-hoon thinks that's weird: a murderer wants to kill, so why do it that way? But there is another important clue: the car's air conditioning is broken (and Ji-hoon is ewaring that sexy shirt again).
In the meantime Do-shik is looking for the fisherman brother, down at the harbor. He is no longer working there, though. He disappeared all of a sudden, about 6-7 months ago, a semi-drunk fisherman knows. But luckily, he knows where he lives, cause he shipped his stuff to him. And Do-shik runs really, really fast, I don't really know why and I don't know where, but it's hilarious
The whole team and many, many police men converge at the place where the fisherman suspect lives. They enter and find ... a completely rotten corpse!
He suffered from kidney failure. The medication he took doesn't mix well with alcohol ... but that's exactly what he had been drinking. The poor guy has been dead for 6 months! More precisely, he seems to have died between December 25 and 26, judging from his diary entries (or the sudden lack of them). And the last entry is about the statute of limitations and how it is going to end in 6 months. He writes about how unfair his sister's death was, etc. etc. etc. But, to the TEN Team's annoyance, he died 10 days before Im Se-jin. Meaning: he isn't the killer.
And the weird thing: He has the statute of limitations date marked on his calendar ... on June 29.

3일-3 Days

Park Joon-young thought the statute of limitations ended on June 29th? And Im Se-jin left a message with the same date on it. How did she know he would think it would end on that day? Ye-ri looks at the photo, the white board ... and says "I am back", before she runs out of the room. We're getting there.
Ji-hoon is at the lakeside, where they found the bodies. He is listening to the recording again. And then, he looks at all the pictures from the crime scene again on his tablet. He sees a black plastic bag fly by in the wind ... and it seems to be giving him an idea. Really getting there now, it seems!
Ye-ri gets some results from the police helper-woman. It is about the handwriting! She had it checked, and it is a match. She says "it was you who sent it!" and I am pretty confident we will know very soon who she means with "you".

And here we go: The hiking-boots from Oh Hyun-joo's house match the dirt around Im Se-jin's house. The handwriting on the back of the postcard is Im Se-jin's. This is how it went: Im Se-jin threatened Oh Hyun-joo by letting her know she was back from the States. She knew that Oh Hyun-joo was threatening Kim Min-sun, whose statute of limitations would end after hers. But ... she also knew something else: Oh Hyun-joo also went abroad! She went to America for 17 days. Which means ... her statute of limitations would have ended on June 29! Three days after Kim Min-sun's. Oh Hyun-joo killed Im Se-jin for this secret.
But Kim Min-sun did not know - and she couldn't trust Oh Hyun-joo, who had made her life a living hell with her blackmail. That is why she killed her, on the day she thought Oh Hyun-joo's statute of limitations would have ended (the 12th June)

But who killed Kim Min-sun?

Ji-hoon who has been looking at a crime scene photos with a red banner on it says: "Doubt and fears - that was the last puzzle. Let's go, I've found the real killer."

And they go to the lake. He tells them how it happened: On the day of the murder, it was really hot. And, as we know, the AC of her car was broken. Flashback: the two women in the car, in front of the restaurant. Min-sun congratulates Hyun-joo that it's finally over for her. Will she keep her promise? she asks the smiling Hyun-joo, who asks her whether she doesn't trust her or what? And goes to the toilet. When she is gone, Min-sun gets a syringe and a bottle of poison out. Because of her shaking hands, she spills some of the poison when trying to get it into the syringe. Next, they're parked at the lake-shore. Hyun-soo drinks the poisoned coffee... and starts suffocating almost immediately from the strong toxin. To maximize the effects of the poison, Min-sun rolled the windows up. But she underestimated the power of the poison. As the temperatures in the car rose, the tetrodoxin on the seat and floor vaporized and she breathed it in. When she got up to get rid of the syringe, she is already feeling terrible. So she went back to the car, trying to call for help. But too late.
But who locked the door? The others want to know. Herself, Ji-hoon says. Sometimes, the wind changes direction. Like ... now. And the wind lifts the banner that is lying around. "That's what killed Kim Min-su", Ji-hoon says. She thought that it was Park Soon-young's scarf. And her crushing guilt was what she felt right at the end.
Flashback within the flashback: The white scarf of the dead girl gets red from the girls blood, until it resembles the banner at the lake.

Epilogue:

Min-ho goes up to Ji-hoon's office - who is reading a baseball magazine. Min-ho says he didn't know he was into that, and Ji-hoon asks whether he thinks that is weird.
"You don't look like you would like it, but you do", Min-ho remarks.
"There will come a time when everybody has to throw a breaking ball," Ji-hoon says.
"You'll throw a good one"
And they smile at each other ... when Ji-hoon notices Ye-ri and Do-shik sneaking off together.
They're talking about Song Kyung-tae in the corridor, when Ji-hoon appears behind them (he has bare arms, yum) and says: "How long are the two of you going to keep avoiding me?"
After exhanging glances, Do-shik says: "Director Yeo ... let's talk."
They go up to his office. Finally.
Only Min-ho is left wondering, with the baseball magazine in his hand.
"Min-ho?" the police-helper woman says.
"Yes?"
"It is going to rain tomorrow".
 

Final Thoughts / Comments

Finally. Let's get on with it! On to the final!

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