This episode starts with the Queen not knowing what happened to the King, waiting for his return. King locked in a fight with Byeong In, both parties getting injured, Cheoljong decides to trick Byeong In and jumps over an edge of a cliff to deep water before Byeong in can kill him.
The Grand Queen Dowager looks at the throne greedily. She is going to have her corruption rule again. Byeong In tells her that the Queen has made up her mind that the King is not there, she would join the Kim’s. And the Grand Queen Dowager, is fine with it since she will have power over the hair to the throne.
The Queen without knowing waits for the King in the palace, everywhere she goes comes his memories. Byeong In visits her to congratulate on her pregnancy. She spots his wounded shoulder and asks what happened? He says that he got wounded during a training session. And he requests her to make amends with the Kims. Even though she does not love him, he offers his help if she needs it. Saying in the palace she should not be alone. But she spotting his injury, does not give her word. Saying that she is not lonely in the palace, and he already knows it. Meaning that she has the king by her side. And she says she has already told him about her decision regarding the Kims. YeongPyeon watches this from afar, and does not hear the conversation, comes to the wrong decision thinking she is on Byeong Ins side.
At the Royal meeting, the King’s command in writing is read to all. Telling that he is going to stop the uprising and the nation’s affairs are handed over to the Grand Queen Dowager as the Reagent. She starts her corrupt court by appointing the demoted officials and demoting Yeonpyeong back to his previous position.
She states that since the King has gone on a difficult mission, any rumor about the King is forbidden. News of the Kings fall reaches the Queen. Choi announces the Queen that the King has left this world.
Grand Queen dowager and Byeong In makes sure all the gates to the palace are blocked. And well guarded until the new King’s coronation in five days. GQD says, since the king is considered dead, during these five days, even if they kill the king, it will not be treason.
The Queen is in full sorrow, and cries while the Eunuch calls the King. Please return three times standing on the top of the castle and throw down the King’s robe as tradition. Shameless Grand Queen Dowager sharing a meal with Byeong In, asks him how long does she have to wait for the Queen to come around and reconcile with her.
The Queen, sitting in sorrow, takes the book of parental care she has been writing and throws it away saying what use of this when you are not here. And she suddenly spots an open page with Cheoljong’s neat handwriting. She takes the book and reads it, realising that he had done it while she was sleeping. And she starts crying holding the book.
“ Baby, Do not be sensitive to the smell of food. Do not make things harder on your dear mother. You can run around all you want during the day. When your dear mother wants to sleep, stop that. When you come out of this world, please come out quickly, so you do not put your mother through a lot of trouble. More importantly, come into this world as a healthy baby. I look forward to the day when we will meet. I promise to be next to you. When you take your first breath in this world. Even if this world seems strange to you, do not be afraid.”
Prince Yeonpyeong enters the Queen’s Quarters with his sword, asking if it was her plan to protect herself, that the King left the palace to walk into a trap? She asks him what that meant? While Byeong In enters, Yeonpyeong grabs the Queen and holds her at the awards point. While Choi and Hong Yon implores him saying that she does not know anything about it. Byeong In tells that it is the Donghak believers who killed the King. Yeongpyeon tells him confidently, that they do not even kill the country governors, let alone how can they kill their own King? It is ByeongIn who killed the king. Choi and Hong Yon implores for the baby’s sake to release the Queen, she does not know anything. Yeong Pyeon drops the sword. Byeong In order to arrest Yeong Pyeon for passing information to Donghak believers about the comings and goings of the King.
Byeong In asks the Queen to join the Kims again. And she weighs the facts she knew and the wound in Byeong Ins shoulder, figures out it is Byeong In’s doing. And she does not answer his request. Byeong In says if she does not reconcile with the Grand Queen Dowager, there will be no other chance for her to do so.
Special director Hong gets arrested for helping Yeong pyeong. And they are put in the same cell.
Shameless Byeong In holds a party to celebrate the king’s death and suggests that all the towns and palaces entry gates will be closed with tight security. That way, they can get rid of all Donghak believers. And the ministers laugh saying that the Queen went too far, and too bold. If she now gives birth to a prince, she will be killed. They laugh saying the idea is not bad.
Queen smelling something fishy, goes to the heavily guarded chamber where the King’s body lies, dressed as an eunuch with the help of Samsan. While Samsan changes Jocksticks, she checks the body which they say the face is unrecognisable. So she touches the boy and Eureka! It is not the King’s body.
Meanwhile Byeong In’s guards accuse special director Hong for robbing the firearms, which is actually done my JwaGeun’s henchman. Hong can’t believe the insult. And the man says Yeong Pyeong does not seem to be interested to know what he is being accused for. Ans laughs saying that he will know at the trial.
Hong shouts at the leaving man that he is happy to stay there as much as he can as long as it is better than the hard work he was doing. And his mouth opens in shock when he sees the figure of the Queen coming to them in the form of an eunuch.
After conversing with Hong and Yeong Pyeon, Queen figures out that Byeongin tried to send Cheoljjong to the rebel army, using her as bait to kill him. But this is someone else’s corpse, which means things didn’t go according to his plan so he is locking up cheoljong’s men who can help him return.
She tells Hong Yon and Choi the truth. And asks Choi, whether there is a law preventing anyone ascending the throne as soon as the late king has passed away? She tells her there is a custom called sangwibock. Which means that they have to wait for the late King’s spirit to return for five days. And the next king can only ascend the throne after five days. They count that they have six days including the day of enthronement.
The Queen now discusses with her two ladies, telling them that they’ll play every trick so the King does not come back within those six days. And there are 320 court maids including servants, there are about 600 girls. The Queen thinks oh! There are 600 living surveillance cameras. If all of them say one word, there will be 600 words. She decides to use the courtmaids. She is planning to ruin the enthronement ceremony. Choi and Hong agree to help.
Notices are seen on notice boards saying, because Donghak believers got the king killed, they will be massacred. Kim Hwan asks Byeong In what crime did the special director and the Prince Yeongpyeon do to lock them up? Byeongin tells him siding with the weaker is also a crime. And he needs more power to achieve what he needs.
The Queen tells Hong to apply makeup on her as if she is a lifeless body. Do you have to go this far? She tells Hong, the King only has me now to help him. So it has to be like that. They won’t lock up a pregnant woman.
She and the two of the consorts stay in the praying room as paying respect to the King. Who is seemingly dead. The Grand Queen Dowager comes there with the Queen Dowager. She thinks the Grandmother queen and the Dowager Jo are bringing their A game to their show. And she thinks that she will take the grand award that night. If she stays a minute longer, she will end up cursing them. So she puts up a grand show of cry and makes Choi and Hong to carry her away.
On her way to her quarters, she confronts Hwajin. She indicates to Hong and Choi to move away so she can talk comfortably with Hwajin.
Hwajin askes, “Did you call for me?” She tells Hwajin that the King is alive. She has called Hwajin to tell that. Hwajin thanks her. She makes a plan with Hwajin, telling her this is just the beginning.
Byeong in and the ministers talk, that they will be able to stabilise the empire in four days. Byeong in has prepared a document. Of dethroning the king. As long as the King was there, they had a common enemy, now the King is not there, they may attempt to split. To prevent that all the ministers of the two clans must sign the document of dethroning the king.
Now they are all angered by Byeong In’s audacity. Since the king is already dead, why do they need such a document? They try to leave the room. But Byeong In’s guards are outside, ByeongIn warns them that they cannot go alive without signing. He signs first. And the others have to follow.
Meanwhile The Queen is packing her things. Hong and Choi bring her the news that everywhere the gates are heavily guarded. And there is one place where gerds are searching continually. That is the cliff. Now she knows where Cheoljong was. Last seen. She is going to save him.
Dressed as a man she sneaks out of the palace. Byeong In asks his guard about how the queen is doing? The guard tells him she has fainted due to shock, but soon recovered. Byeong In senses something fishy about her fainting, and goes to check. ByeongIn finds her leaving. And goes after her to stop her. Telling the king is no more and she should stay in the palace. She tells him that she knows everything. And she also knows that the King is alive. He persists that he will not let her go. She tells him she chose the king over ByeongIn because Cheoljong is the most suitable candidate to be the King. and she further tells that the Soyong he loved is no longer there. And she shoots an arrow in his direction telling the one he loved will not be able to shoot an arrow at him. But ByeongIn advances towards her, she shoots an arrow hitting his leg this time and runs away leaving the angry Byeong In.
Only to find Choi and Hong who are waiting to accompany her. She tries to stop them from following her but in vain. Finally she agrees to go with them telling if only it was her, she could jump over the wall, but with these two she cannot. But they have prepared everything. Not to worry. She dresses up as the queen again and passes the gate openly with the other two.
ByeongIn now figures out there is a huge difference between the Kim So yong he new and the Queen. Past flashbacks returning to him. He goes home, and JwaGeun tells him the fire is lit in his room and it is warm. Have a good rest. Byong In asks him how he knows. And he replies I am a father.
JwaGeun goes to see the Grand Queen, and tells her about the plan of treason. How Grand Dowager thinks how could ByeongIn do something even without telling. Her. it is dangerous. JwaGeun promises her that he will bring it back to her. He only wants to stay by her side helping her. Since he cannot take a government position now.
In his opinion, the Queen dressed as an ordinary person leaving the palace is not a simple thing. She must be knowing that the King is alive. Now she is dressed as an ordinary person, Grand dowager thinks they should be both deposed.
Jwageun in the morning starts questioning a herb gatherer, accusing him of killing the king. And the poor man has never seen the king. This is how they used the innocent people to blame on their behalf.
Cheoljong Wakes up in a herb gatherers hut. The herb gatherer had rescued him, seeing his expensive but torn clothes and seeing that the soldiers were on the look, he had already burned the expensive Royal clothes. He tells Cheoljong that he doesn’t seem to have any money with him, so he will not be allowed out without paying for the deed.
Hearing someone coming, the herb gatherer goes out to meet him. Cheoljong watches secretly from inside. While delivering some herbs, the man pases a letter to the herb gatherer. Cheoljong waits until his saviour goes out, and quickly finds the letter hidden inside a cupboard and reads it. The herb gatherer comes inside pointing his axe at Cheoljong behind.
Byeong In leaves the palace in search of the Queen. Before he leaves, Kim Hwan approaches him and questions him, finally telling him that they used to be cousins and very close, is this right? Byeong In replies that she is not his cousin anymore and rides off with his soldiers.
Special director Hong meddles with the lock of the cell calling what a sloppy piece of lock that one is. And it breaks suddenly, making them elated. He put the lock back quickly as Kim Hwan was paying them a visit.
Kim Hwan visits Special Director Hong and Prince YeonPyeong, telling the Queen has sneaked out of the palace and Byeong In is after her. And he sensed that Byeong In might harm the Queen, Making them realise that the Queen really has abandoned her clan and is on the King’s side.
In the woods Byeong In’s soldiers spot the Queen and they run after her. Choi runs to them to buy time for the Queen to escape and is knocked down. While hiding behind a rock, Hong runs away to distract the soldiers telling the Queen to find her King. Finally, Byeong In finds her, she runs and ends up in the same place where the King jumped in.
Byeong In holding her by the neck asks her who she is exactly and what has she done with So Yong he used to know? And episode 18 ends.