Alchemy of Souls season 1, episode 10 recap – a less intense chapter

July 17, 2022
Nathan Sartain 1
K-Drama, Netflix, Streaming Service, TV, Weekly TV


A less intense chapter which smartly opts to deepen the relationships between characters.

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A less intense chapter which smartly opts to deepen the relationships between characters.

This recap of Alchemy of Souls season 1, episode 10 contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.

As Maidservant Kim cleans Jang UK’s room, pushing the idea of the young master having feelings for someone to the point she theorises that he could come back from Songrim with a wife, Mu-deok finds herself annoyed at the description of the “bird egg” that is wrongly speculated to be Lady Heo. What she believes was shared between herself and her pupil is “the desperate feeling of survival, and the earnestness of finding ourselves,” before acknowledging that love may have “seeped in” between the two. However, Mu-deok adds that these emotions are just a shell that will be left behind once she has hatched.

Alchemy of Souls season 1, episode 10 recap

Although he has technically mastered his education, rendering him able to return home, Jang Uk is stopped by Park Jin, who presents another book to be read, one which requires focused energy for the words on the page to even be accessed. Meanwhile, Dang-gu and Seo Yul wonder why such a thing was given to their friend so early, acknowledging that it will take significant time to read, and that Jang Uk will be unable to do anything while burdened with the task. Soon though, we find out that this is all because Park Jin has no intention to train the young master, but rather keep him close enough to ensure he causes no trouble, given that Jang Gang is bound to return once he hears of the news surrounding his son’s gate of energy being opened.

With that being said, Heo Yeom seems somewhat excited at the idea of the Gwanju returning, knowing that he is needed for the removal of Jin Mu. “Everything will be solved once he returns,” Park Jin adds, looking sympathetic towards Jang Uk over the potentially impossible training task he’s been given. Elsewhere, Lady Heo properly hears of Mu-deok’s identity, and importance to the young master as she enters his house, while the training mage struggles to add text to the currently blank pages facing him.

Running away from Songrim when realising why such an exercise had been given to him, Jang Uk swears a sighing Lady Heo to secrecy once more upon his exit. Concurrently, Seo Yul visits Mu-deok to explain the situation involving her master, and brings the maid to the market so she can buy him a new umbrella. Here, Mu-deok slightly slips up when discussing the genius mage’s weak leg, so hears of the history he remembers involving his love interest’s treatment of the wound.

With Jang Uk getting ready to bathe in waiting for Mu-deok, stealing some honey biscuits in the process, we cut to Dang-gu, who is discussing his “break-up” with Cho-yeon. Instead of ending their fake relationship though, the two seem to make inroads in their own developing feelings for each other, with an agreement struck between the two over their joint attendance of a magic show. Elsewhere, Mu-deok purchases some sweets for her pupil and seemingly considers an application to become a servant in Songrim, while So-i is unsuccessfully chased by the women she stole from aboard the ship.

During her running, the trickster stumbles across Mu-deok, but is unable to talk to her given her pursuers aren’t far behind. More than disappointed though, So-i is surprised, wondering why her blind friend can suddenly see, and if it was really her. Shortly after, when dragged along the floor by one of her stronger victims, Seo Yul intervenes, saving the thief after falling for her deception of blindness. Yet he does not follow So-i on her travels, leaving her vulnerable enough in isolation to be taken by a mysterious figure.

Running around in the hope of finding Jang Uk when realising both that he has returned home, and then left to head back to Songrim, Mu-deok eventually comes across her pupil when he’s on a boat. There, she informs him of the test she will take to enter where he is, before throwing him the advertisement in a warm showing of endearment.

Later on, the Crown Prince spots Jang Uk on his return to Sejukwon, ready to confront him over his conduct. What follows is another petty squabble between the two, this time over the royal’s injuries, and the young master’s illness after drinking. However, grievances are soon tempered by the gifting of a honey biscuit, one which guarantees that the Crown Prince won’t expose Jang Uk’s misdemeanours, and allows for some advice to be given over the location of mages who could find themselves perplexed about the young master’s travels.

As Jin Mu tells the Queen that they have Jang Uk’s constellation plate as a way of trying to make certain the Crown Prince kills the mage, the two enter Cheonbugwan’s secret room together, ready to enact the plan that will see Jinyowon become theirs. Concurrently, the young master returns home, impressed by Lady Heo’s persistence in waiting for him in spite of her noticeable boredom.

Upset at Maidservant Kim’s attempts at using bribery to get Mu-deok into Songrim, Park Jin explains that such deeds will see an end to their close relationship. But all his warnings do is enrage Kim, who seems ready to put a pin in their connection due to her upset. So, with the scarf back in her possession, the Maidservant leaves, perhaps permanently.

While still struggling to read the book he has been given, Jang Uk finds himself interrupted by Master Lee. Again, the teacher wishes for the young master to drink the chaste herb tea and become his pupil, but he does afford the trainee mage some advice too. Seo Gyeong’s poem in the book was written for someone who cannot see, making it a love letter to be read with the heart. Departing with the question “how does a love letter begin?” Master Lee leaves Jang Uk to wonder the alternative way the book can be accessed.

Following on from another interaction between Master Lee and Maidservant Kim which sees the former become more inclined to succumb to temptation, we move forward to the Songrim servant contest, where Mu-deok is determined to secure entry to the area permanently. As we find out, the test is quite a difficult one, with a rather lighthearted scene showing the trio of Dang-gu, Seo Yul and the Crown Prince all putting their heads together in a bid to decipher the answers to the numerous difficult questions on offer.

Realising that such a test is far too difficult for Mu-deok, the Crown Prince is tasked with discreetly delivering the trio’s perfect paper to the maid, something that surprisingly manages to go smoother than expected. As such, Mu-deok progresses to the practical test, excelling in her displays of manual labour prior to the deciding fitness test.

As Mu-deok heads out to try and be one of the first five back with water, Park Jin tells Jang Uk to have patience over ‘Words of the Heart’, and offers to prepare the trainee’s bed, food and clothes to his liking due to Maidservant Kim’s worries. However, the young master is more inclined to wonder whether people should be reading the private thoughts of Seo Gyeong, a statement which the leader of Songrim takes as an attempt to try and illicit help in the task. It’s because nobody knows the poem is a love letter, of course, with this reminder the encouragement Jang Uk needs to find out the name of Jinyowon’s first leader, and subsequently find the letters on the page.

Transcribing the heartfelt poem down on paper, Jang Uk’s narration of the love letter proves to be the backbone to Mu-deok’s perseverant success in achieving her goal of becoming a Songrim maid. Meanwhile, a shocked Park Jin is confused by the young master’s completion of his task, and seems suspicious at the fact that the returning Mu-deok is always around the mage he cares for like a son.

The Ending

Describing Seo Gyeong’s poem as pitiful, Mu-deok isn’t impressed by the idea that such a thing may not have ever been sent to the recipient, causing Jang Uk to smile as the two then have a heart-to-heart about their current situation. “I also missed you,” the young master says, as the former assassin reflects on her own delivery of a “foolish and pathetic” love letter. With those sentiments, the episode ends.

You can stream Alchemy of Souls season 1, episode 10 exclusively on Netflix.

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