Time is ticking and time doesn’t wait for anyone. Hong-jo and Sol-Ah are well aware of this, but it seems like one of them cares more about this while the other has other priorities in their life. How will things pan out for our couple who had been strong this entire time?
Meow, the Secret Boy: Episode 11 Recap
“Cats have nine lives. Three lives to have fun, three lives to wander around, and three lives to stay.”
Sol-Ah takes cat Hong-jo to the veterinarian once again. However, unlike all the other times, Hong-jo isn’t sick or ill. Sol-Ah is afraid as to why he’s not transforming into a human being like how he usually does. When they return home, Hong-jo returns in his human form the next morning. He was just sleepy the night before which was why he didn’t transform. But Sol-Ah shouldn’t fret as nothing has happened to him. Now that Hong-jo can talk to Sol-Ah, the two decide not to waste any time and they go on another outing with each other. They have some fun at the aquarium and go shopping. Even spending time together at home is a lot of fun for our two lovebirds. Whether in Sol-Ah’s webtoon or in real life, our couple is enjoying all the time they have with each other so far.
Doo-sik breaks the news to his parents about his relationship with Ji-eun. His parents aren’t as excited at the news and had rather assumed that Doo-sik was dating Sol-Ah at first, but Doo-sik explains his reasons for falling in love with Ji-eun. He’s proud of their relationship. After eating some food at Doo-sik’s parents, Jae-sun, Hong-jo, and Sol-Ah all walk home together. At that moment, Sol-Ah receives great news from the web manager who manages the website her webtoon is on. They’re interested in possibly publishing her webtoon officially online. With the support and assistance of Hong-jo, Sol-Ah works extra hard every night to finalize her webtoon. Yay! While Sol-Ah is at work, Hong-jo continues to hang out with his only friend, little Dae-sung. After chatting with his friend, Hong-jo has a telepathic conversation with Dae-sung’s cat who can also transform into a human being just like Hong-jo. Although it’s not explicit as to what the cat conveys to Hong-jo, it doesn’t seem like it’s good news.
Just like all the other times, Hong-jo stops by Sol-Ah’s workplace and seats himself on the same bench he’s been all the other times before. He seems down and devastated about something. Ji-eun witnesses Hong-jo transform from a cat to a human being right in front of her eyes and grows shocked. So it is true! She reports the news to Sol-Ah who’s curious as to what Ji-eun is referring to. Hong-jo? Transforming from a cat to a human being? When? It’s then that she finds Hong-jo waiting on the bench outside of their workplace so she quickly goes outside to meet him. Hong-jo simply wished to meet with Sol-Ah because he wanted to spend more time with her, but leaves shortly after once Sol-Ah encourages him to wait for her at home. Instead of going straight back home, Hong-jo makes a stop at Jae-sun’s cafe and requests for Jae-sun to teach him how to engrave Sol-Ah’s name on wood.
Back at the office, Doo-sik communicates with Ji-eun through sticky notes and suggests that they all go out for dinner again that night. It was fun the other day when they were all together at his parent’s restaurants. However, Ji-eun politely declines after noticing just how busy Sol-Ah seems. The two end up taking the conversation outside and bicker about what happened at his parent’s restaurants. Doo-sik should have been more respectful about announcing their relationship to everyone then. He should have also told Ji-eun ahead of time that he was going to do that. Doo-sik just can’t help with the way that he feels towards Ji-eun; he likes her so much and he’s uncertain as to how to express his love for her. Right at that moment, Ji-eun grabs Doo-sik’s face and gives him a kiss. Of course, Doo-sik likes it so he gives her another kiss right after. That’s how they can express their love for each other. Hehe.
Sol-Ah works tirelessly day and night at both the office as well as on her webtoon. Though Hong-jo is there every single step of the way to watch her and to support her, he can’t help but notice just how distant the two have sort of become. In a conversation with Jae-sun, he worries that he’s no longer a part of Sol-Ah’s happiness. He thought that he would be happy as long as Sol-Ah was happy, but a part of him remains afraid that he’s not a part of her happiness. Jae-sun closes the conversation by relaying that he’ll be away for a few days to be back at home with his dad.
Hong-jo waits outside of Sol-Ah’s workplace again the next day. Just like all the times before, she steps outside to meet with him. This time, there’s some hope for Sol-Ah plans on leaving work early so they can finally spend some time together. However, just as she’s about to leave work, CEO Park urges her to cancel any plans she has and to stay behind at work. They have an emergency meeting with one of their clients and Sol-Ah has to attend that meeting. Sol-Ah relays the devastating news to Hong-jo so he has no choice but to go home. While walking home, it begins to rain and he grows worried about Sol-Ah. Using her yellow umbrella, he waits at the bus stop for her arrival. He even attempts to get in contact with her, but work is a priority for Sol-Ah.
When the meeting finally concludes and Sol-Ah does arrive at the bus stop, she’s surprised to see Hong-jo waiting for her with her yellow umbrella. She has her own umbrella with her and she’s not so happy with how Hong-jo has been acting the past few days. Sol-Ah is aware that she’s been busy with work and her webtoon, but she’s doing it because she believes that all the hard work will pay off. More people will pay attention to her webtoon and she won’t lose her job by focusing just purely on the webtoon. Sol-Ah feels apologetic to Hong-jo, but she also disproves of how he’s been acting recently. He’s been doing way too much to stand out to her and she doesn’t like it. Sol-Ah requests for Hong-jo to stop waiting for her even though she and Hong-jo are both well aware that waiting is what cats are the best at. Hong-jo is heart-broken at Sol-Ah’s comment and he recalls the small conversation he had with Dae-sung’s cat the other day: a cat’s time with a human being is predestined. Hong-jo wants to spend as much time with Sol-Ah as possible before his time with her runs out, but it seems like Sol-Ah doesn’t necessarily feel the same way at the moment.
Jae-sun spends some time with his ill father who doesn’t have much time himself left to live. If there’s anything he’s learned throughout his lifetime, it’s the fact that time waits for no one. Indeed, time is running out for Hong-jo as well. While Sol-Ah is at a work dinner with her team, Jae-sun stops by Sol-Ah’s house to check up on Hong-jo only to find cat Hong-jo unconscious on the couch. Sol-Ah immediately runs home after receiving a phone call to relay to both Jae-sun and Hong-jo the news that she’s received. Fortunately, Hong-jo is alive and well and as for Sol-Ah, her webtoon will be officially published online. The three rejoice.
To celebrate Sol-Ah’s debut as a webtoon artist, Doo-sik and Ji-eun head over to Jae-sun’s cafe using Doo-sik’s parent’s car where the celebratory party will be happening. Before leaving, Ji-eun gifts his parents with a new drawing of the logo to their restaurant. Apparently, Doo-sik’s drawing didn’t meet their expectations. Haha. And so preparations for the party begins. While Doo-sik, Sol-Ah, Ji-eun, and Jae-sun are inside the cafe blowing up some balloons, Hong-jo steps outside to talk to the same man who crammed cats inside of his studio apartment. The man warns Hong-jo about the observation that he saw of Hong-jo transforming from a cat to a human being. As if that wasn’t enough, the man also seems to know a bit about Sol-Ah and is aware of her occupation as a graphic designer. Uh-oh, what kind of trouble is this man going to stir up this time?
And so the party begins! While everyone – including Sol-Ah’s co-workers – are inside celebrating, Hong-jo stays outside and patrols to watch out for the cat man. Sol-Ah heads outside to grab Hong-jo. She wants him to be a part of the party too. Before entering the cafe together, Hong-jo gifts Sol-Ah with the handmade and customized purse that he had crafted for her. Just in the case that one day he can’t take care of her anymore like how he’s been doing, she can use the purse to carry all her belongings. Eventually, the couple enter the cafe together which everyone notices. They at first tease Hong-jo for being a cat since they’ve seen him outside of the office multiple times as both a cat and a human being, but eventually the atmosphere grows awkward. To cheer up the mood, Sol-Ah announces their relationship to everyone at the table. His name isn’t Guk-bong like how Doo-sik thought this entire time. Instead, he is Hong-jo and he and Sol-Ah are dating each other.
With the cat out of the bag, the mood begins to soften up a little bit. Jae-sun notices how sleepy and exhausted Hong-jo is getting so he makes a cup of coffee for Hong-jo. However, the coffee doesn’t have as much of an impact on Hong-jo anymore as it once used to. While walking to the back to grab the cake for Sol-Ah, Hong-jo changes into a cat. Doo-sik and Ji-eun are the first to leave the party since they have plans of their own. However, they’re not the only ones to leave. Sol-Ah rushes out of the cafe after she discovers cat Hong-jo in the back pantry room by himself. However, along the way, she encounters the same cat man from before. He wants to personally witness Hong-jo transform from a cat to a human being again and this time, he’s going to prove it to everyone else as well. He manages to get Sol-Ah to drop cat Hong-jo and holds her hostage while an exhausted cat Hong-jo watches from the ground. Is he going to transform or not?
You know.. I wanted to be more invested in the ending especially considering that it seems like things are a lot more serious now this time around than it was in the last episode, but the drama already trolled us before that I can’t seem to care as much as I should. Sol-Ah’s afraid that cat Hong-jo might not be able to transform into a human being, but since that was the same exact issue in last episode’s ending, I don’t really care anymore. As we saw in the beginning of this episode, Hong-jo’s exhaustion was what prevented him from transforming into a human being so there was nothing to worry about. He was just tired, but he could still change into human form. However, the same exact issue was presented once again at the end of this episode, but I can’t seem to find the energy to be concerned. I was actually scared and afraid at the end of episode 10, but I don’t feel the same way this episode.
Rather than the issue of ‘will Hong-jo be able to transform into a human being’ that we have been exposed to before, I enjoyed the other concern in this episode which was Sol-Ah’s focus on her own career vs. her relationship with Hong-jo. She’s finally getting to do everything she’s wanted to do and her dream of being a noticed webtoon artist is finally coming alive. All good things are coming to her. She’s feeling better about work, she’s in a happy relationship with Hong-jo, the immense amount of time and effort and love she’s poured into her webtoon has finally been acknowledged. I could understand why Sol-Ah and Hong-jo began to grow a little distant in this episode. It seemed like she had to invest a little bit more time in one thing than the other which was the reason behind why their relationship began to slowly fall apart. She struggled to devote an equal amount of time to both her relationship as well as her profession which Hong-jo was concerned about. For Hong-jo, he wants to spend as much time with Sol-Ah as possible because he’s well aware of how limited his time with her is. For Sol-Ah, she’s focused on herself because she’s finally achieving the dreams and goals that she’s set for herself for a long time now. This is her time to shine and she’s not going to let the chance go when she’s worked so hard to get to where she is. I could see and understand why she placed more time and effort on both her webtoon and work over Hong-jo.
However, what Sol-Ah also forgot – as we saw in this episode – is that Hong-jo will not always be there. He won’t be there forever to keep supporting and looking out for her like how he’s been doing and he’s trying his best to get Sol-Ah to notice that. Sol-Ah is so concentrated on her career that she’s forgetting about Hong-jo and the limited amount of time that he has with her. I enjoyed watching this confusion and predicament arise in their relationship, not because it was ruining their relationship or anything, but because it was the first big issue in their relationship that the two had to confront and overcome together. Our couple had their first argument with each other and were able to listen to what the other person had to say. While Hong-jo is desperate to spend as much time with Sol-Ah as possible, Sol-Ah just views his actions as suffocating. She doesn’t want him to wait for her all the time when she’s busy focusing on other things. This issue in their relationship was realistic and painful and I loved watching our two lovebirds try to figure things out and reveal their true thoughts about everything.
Things have been pretty and adorable for Hong-jo and Sol-Ah so far and things will continue to be between them, but they’re also facing a lot more hiccups in their relationship now than before. Hong-jo won’t be able to stay with Sol-Ah much longer and the cat man is threatening both Hong-jo and Sol-Ah’s lives. Our couple has been able to conquer all the challenges they’ve faced in the past, will they be able to do the same now?
Extra screenshots from the episode~