Competition, Confession, and a Geography Lesson: Love is Drop by Drop Episodes 34-37

Show is getting better and better….how will they keep it going for 80+ episodes? I can’t wait to see what happens next!

**screencaps from hdfree.se** The choices are 360p video and blurry screencaps with no news ticker, or 720p video and crisper screencaps with the news ticker.

Woo Hyuk discovers that he’s got competition nipping at his heels:

Uh, oh. This could bring out the worst in the Prick….or the best. WH walks in on Bang Wool giving a cooking lesson to Sang Chul:

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Crumbs. I knew the decision by SC and BW to keep their living arrangements under wraps from their boss was gonna come back and bite them in the butt. WH looks plenty PO’d as SC literally chokes and BW asks what he’s doing there. WH’s pettiness comes right to the front:

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SC is truthful and tells the boss he wants to open a franchise. Since he knows nothing about cooking, BW was teaching him. WH says he was there to give BW a positive review of her latest recipe for his restaurant chain. BW isn’t necessarily buying this explanation:

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Yeah, but he wanted to see BW alone and spend time with her…and now SC is in the way. I think the modern word I am looking for here is “Cock-Blocked“!

Here’s a recipe for today–Start with one narcissistic Prick:

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Add in one heaping spoonful of jealousy:

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And a pinch of self-reflection:

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Answer: Falling head over heels in love.

Later, SC is reading BW’s cooking journal/diary in the car while waiting for his boss. He looks pretty chuffed to read her thoughts, but he immediately hides the book when his boss WH gets in–like he was 14 and caught by his mom with a porno mag! WH wants to know what he was reading, but SC claims it was nothing. WH knows SC too well–and SC guiltily hands over BW’s journal.

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I understand why SC is upset. BW gave the recipe book/journal to him–not to necessarily share with others. It contains her personal notes, thoughts, and feelings. Back in the first episodes, she even wrote about foods for her pregnancy in her journal. It’s a private piece of her life that she chose to share with SC. I thought it was meaningful that she allowed him to read it. The journal was never meant for WH’s eyes. WH closes the book and hands it back:

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WH remarks that it looks like SC and BW have known each other for a long time. SC fibs this time around and says that’s not true. She lent him the book so he could learn more about cooking. WH is not stupid:

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CR  stokes the jealous fire in WH as they watch BW and SC have a cup of coffee and a laugh together.

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Love the English Menu!  BTW, Salted cheese is a green tea drink. (Link)

WH observes:

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After CR says that SC and BW could be mistaken for a ‘couple’, they walk out–but her words have gotten under his skin. WH confronts BW:

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…and now he wants to read it too! I’m not sure how to feel here. I’m happy he gets her permission to read it, but he demands it in a petty and childish way. WH says he wants to read her recipes, but BW counters that he’s got way more info about recipes and cooking at his disposal. Why read her thoughts? WH is desperate enough to pull this card:

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Whoa, Woo Hyuk! Careful there….those are fighting words in my neck of the woods right now! Everyone seems to get offended over quite literally everything since the election.

The scene ends when the coworkers and Chae Rin interrupt things but it’s becoming more and more clear: WH is interested in BW…. and I’m not talking about an employer-employee relationship. He gets testy when BW and SC take a day off to celebrate Dad’s retirement. He grouches over the fact that she spends time at the restaurants getting feedback from the customers, and then goes in late in the day to work on projects in the test kitchen. He gives his lovely employee more grief:

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BW tries to explain that she’s working hard and doing her best. Now the Boss is getting greedy:

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Remember that this statement is from the man that thinks seeing his GF Chae Rin once a day is a burden! Ha! BW wants to know why. After all:

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WH is overtaken by the Prick gene once again:

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Wow, that Prick gene is a strong one. It must be like a weed, and needs to be pulled out by the roots on a daily basis. DJ’s heart must be fighting against it day and night! WH calls her a slacker, and says she needs to work on the tripe dish while BW counters that it’s not like pushing a button and getting a new menu; it’s trial and error, along with some hard work too! WH makes it all about him, as usual. At least BW stands up to her boss and doesn’t start to cry or wilt in front of him. He watches her cook:

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That’s gotta be annoying…but wanna know what is worse? She makes food for him, then he rejects it without even tasting it:

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#whattabastard

Dude, are you serious?! He reluctantly eats a piece, says it tastes the same as last time, and insists she make it again! He runs into SC in the hallway and acts like a jerk to him as well:

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WH warns his assistant to not interfere with BW’s work, and SC backs down. Meanwhile, BW says the exact thing I was thinking:

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Bwaaahaahaa! There can’t be any other explanation….WH needs to go to the pharmacy asap!

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.

And he might wanna pick up a chocolate bar too!

SC arrives and BW gives him a rundown of the boss’s hormonally challenged attitudes. She wonders:

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or is it just ‘that time of the month’ for him!?! Yunno, by this point SC should know what day/week of the month his boss is most likely to turn into a dragon. Usually it’s quite predictable. However SC is amazingly dense, and is not sure what bee is up in the bonnet of his boss.

Like any good Kdrama lead, WH needs some time to brood and think things over. His usual choice of brooding spot is the car. Too bad it’s not the shower! I’m always cool with a broody shower scene! (Or nekkid guys fighting in the shower! **wink to The K2**) I know it’s unrealistic to expect a shower scene because this is a daily drama and show is aired in the early evening when families are watching TV. WH having some down time in the car is cool with me….heaven knows I used to get in my car and leave for an hour or two when the kids were teenagers because I needed some time to think by myself. He replays the “coins on the floor” scene where he pushed BW onto the floor  **Grrr** and the scene today where he says he wants to see her every day. At least he pulls the car over before causing an accident as he begins to realize:

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He tries to talk himself out of it, calling BW “lowly” and “crude”.  **face-palm** Is this guy ever gonna get it? He turns up the jerky behavior another notch the next day where he meets BW in the hallway at work. She checks in with him just as he asked, and his PMS (Pissy Man Syndrome) is no better:

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BW shakes her fist at him after he leaves and declares:

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#fighting

Good for you! Don’t let this Prick get you down!

Why I love this show–in a nutshell:

Woo Kyung is in the practice room with Woo Wan. Today they are working on her turns.

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She’s pretty clumsy, but she keeps trying which WW gives her some credit for, even if he’s not exactly encouraging. She does a couple of turns….stumbles….and ends up in WW’s lap, with her lips pressed to his:

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Ah geez. Really, writer-nim?! We have to go with the accidental lip press trope already in this show?! Not much fun stuff has happened with WW and WK over the last few episodes, and that makes me sad. He pushes her away:

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Then he kicks her out of the practice room while wiping his mouth like she has cooties!

But I get my attitude changed in a big hurry…because in the next episode, WW is prepared!

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OMG–that’s so funny! He’s not taking any chances! Leave it to the writer to turn that worn out trope upside down and inside out. I love it! He could’ve just brought a disposable mask from the dental clinic…but he’s got the kind like the Kpop stars wear out in public or at the airport. That’s even better IMHO. Here’s his justification:

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I am all for ‘weird’ situations with these two characters. Here’s to even more weirdness in the future!

Side note: Wearing a face mask like that is commonly called a “chin bra” and is highly frowned upon in a medical/dental setting.

For Your Edification: Today’s Korean Geography Lesson

BW is looking for a special ingredient for her tripe recipe. She asks her team leader for permission to go on a business trip:

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Yeongyang is a 4 1/2 hour drive from Seoul and is a sparsely populated, mountainous and remote destination. It’s difficult to get there, and I can’t imagine winter snow and ice make that journey any easier. Known for its chili peppers and apple orchards, the province also hosts a chili pepper festival each year. Going to Yeongyang to get special peppers must be like going to Gilroy to get garlic. Here’s some Yeongyang red pepper flakes for sale on Ebay. I am gonna look for these next time I go to H-Mart. The Yeongyang area is also home to a firefly Eco-Park, an astronomical observatory and a wind farm. Due to the light pollution and the ever-increasing urban population, it’s one of the few places in SK that a naturally dark sky can be observed, so it is an excellent place for a telescope and planetarium. I love when shows throw in accurate details like this. Westerners probably don’t know about Yeongyang like Koreans do. This was some fascinating side research for me.

However, the Boss is not too thrilled about the idea since BW will miss an office meeting. Her office mates praise her dedication to getting just the right ingredients for a recipe, while WH grumbles that she is peculiar like that. Team Leader gives the boss a reminder that BW isn’t the only picky sort around this company:

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Later that evening, WH is driving home when he hears the breaking news bulletin on the radio:

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The radio announcer states that heavy snow is hampering rescue of the victims…and it sinks in that BW might just be on that bus. He pulls over and calls her. No answer. He checks the restaurant where she’d been working–not there. He even calls the Yoon family, so now they’re worried too!

Next stop is the police station–and check out the banner over the door. The Seoul Police must be having serious PR problems after the twin debacles of “Mrs. Cop”! My thanks to the subbers for this awesome moment :

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#priceless

One thing for sure…WH learned how to eloquently swear in English while he was in the US! Without any trace of accent, he hollers, “Sh*t!”….and the subbers do some scrubbing….

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That is so, so funny! The S-word seems to be his English cuss word of choice. The useless police just told him that they don’t have new info on the bus accident or casualties, so it’s time for another brooding session in the car adjacent to BW’s home:

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WH wakes up as BW’s heels click on the pavement. He sees BW walk up and jumps out of the car. BW is shocked as the relief that she’s okay pours out of her cold and grouchy boss….but then that Prick gene of WH rears its ugly head again as he shouts at her:

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BW is amazingly calm as she asks why he’s screaming. WH counters that he thought something happened to her…and he wonders why she keeps bothering him. Feisty BW hands it right back to WH:

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And the payoff for us viewers–the Confession:

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and the Hug:

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BW coulda just stood there like an ironing board…but she wraps her arms around WH for a few seconds. Instinct or something more?

Uh oh, is that Sang Chul in the background?! Omo. He’s not gonna like this one bit….he stares and then turns on his heel and walks off.

Commentary–I think it’s pretty safe to say SC has had ample opportunity to tell BW about his feelings for her. He knew Dad approved of him, so he had that going for him, plus the advantage of living with her and seeing her every day. He also had Byeol who called him “Uncle” on his side. But SC has been deeply burned by the breakup with Chae Rin years ago, and he is the living embodiment of the saying “Once Bitten, Twice Shy“. He can’t seem to bounce back and take the initiative to ‘fess up to  BW, even though I have no doubt he loves her. Now he’s in big trouble. His boss is hugging the girl he loves, and yet he turns and walks away instead of confronting them both. Is is because he used to be rich and now he’s (relatively) poor? Is it because he’s an orphan now? Is he afraid he will lose his job? Is his self-confidence still at zero? Was he being presumptuous and figured no other guy would want a single mom so he’s got all the time in the world–and suddenly things have changed?

These questions and many more are the subject of endless friendly debate on the Soompi forum. I’m actually surprised that the vitriol is so pervasive against SC. I feel bad for him probably because like SC, I am also unable to bounce back. After my divorce, I did not want to date when the kids were young, but now my baby is 21 (!) and my oldest is on the verge of moving out. I should feel more than ready to have a relationship and date again, but the mere thought of making an E-Harmony online dating profile or going out with a guy for dinner or even a coffee makes me feel panicky and fearful. Many of my friends I went to college with have divorced and remarried with excellent results the second time around, yet I find myself stuck.

Resiliency in life is important. My Dad certainly has it….he just celebrated his first anniversary with his new wife after my mom committed suicide almost 3 years ago. I know my mom didn’t have resiliency (or she would have never ended her own life) and neither does my sister. After her first love died of pancreatic cancer at 24 (sounds like a Kdrama, right?) my sis has never been able to have a solid long term relationship with a guy. Now I am watching as my youngest son struggles after two disastrous dating relationships–will he wait years between dating as in the past or will he turn things around quickly? My daughter has resiliency in droves, and my older son has his fair share despite his autism issues. I thought I had it too…but it’s been lost over time, or I used up whatever I had after being a single parent for 20 years.

It’s gonna be extremely interesting to see how the writer handles things. Will SC turn into a jerk? Will he bury the hatchet and join forces with his ex-GF CR and interfere with WH and BW’s relationship? Will WH and SC fight openly over BW or will it be more underhanded and clandestine?  I know BW is gonna end up with WH, but what happens to SC is important to me. In this drama, we have SC, a nice guy who I hope doesn’t lose his way and turn into a Prick, and WH, a full blown Prick who is about to pull a 180 degree turnaround into a nice guy.

*****

What SC doesn’t see after he bails is that BW pushes WH away and asks what the heck he thinks he’s doing! The confession from WH just keeps on coming…kinda like the water level rising in my backyard last weekend during the big rainstorm!

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WH knows she’s surprised…

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This next statement by WH is truly amazing. He admits he treated her badly:

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Admitting your bad behavior is the first step to wiping out the Prick gene.

But when he heard about the bus crash and thought she might be in danger:

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Now I know that was the heart of DJ who was worried for his girl…but where does WH fit into this? Has the brain of WH been hacked by DJ’s heart, or is WH making these decisions of his own free will? This is something I am going to ponder over the next few weeks. I want WH to love BW without this nagging feeling that DJ is behind the wheel or calling the shots.

BW has no issues making her feelings crystal clear:

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WH isn’t fazed by her rejection. He knows this is a surprise–

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He’s so honest and forthright here…it’s shocking to me too! BW says she’s not changing her mind, and that WH doesn’t know her at all. WH thinks this is the holdup:

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**face-palm**

But that doesn’t matter to him…he still likes her! BW lays down the final card that makes WH stop in his tracks:

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You can almost hear the screeching tire noise in WH’s brain as the awesome BG music comes to a sudden halt. WH is blown away as he hears she has a 7 year old son. (I think there are some age differences in the translation because show mentions Byeol is in Kindergarten. Byeol also can’t be more than 5 1/2 because his dad died exactly 6 years ago in January of 2011 when BW was about 3-4 months along in her pregnancy. See my screencap of DJ’s burial site in the second LIDD recap.) BW walks away, but WH runs back to her:

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Dude, do I need to have “The Talk” with you? It’s not like she had Byeol in junior high or even high school for crying out loud…she was 22. And technically married, at least for a bit! BW says that it’s all in the paperwork she submitted to the company–didn’t he read it? Heh, guess not. She tries to put the lid on this:

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Now in RL, that would/should be the end of it. That was a darn thorough rejection….and without screaming, hysterics, tears, a slap, or any of the other makjang stuff we often see in these daily shows almost any other Kdrama. This scene is another fantastic one….show keeps serving them up one after the other.

WH goes back home and tries to see if there is an answer to his current problems at the bottom of a whiskey bottle. He gets well and truly hammered–then his mom comes in and gives him hassle:

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#the face you make when Mom nags you and you’re drunk

And then Chae Rin calls to add to his grief….good gracious! She won’t shut up about the charity bazaar, and going out to dinner with his mom, blah blah blah…..WH finally cuts her off:

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His eyes say it all.  #blotto

OMG. Is…is this a brooding shower scene with drunken Woo Huyk! What small country did I save to deserve such fanservice, lol! Notice anything special about this pic? Other than those defined abs and muscular shoulders?

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Now I know that Chae Rin’s dad didn’t do the heart transplant surgery on WH….it had to be Kim Sabu from “Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim”! Only a doctor with the nickname “The Hand Of God” can stitch a patient up sooooo perfectly after a heart transplant that there is no scar at all! None! ROTFLMAO! #Lapse of Logic  And how about that mirror in the shower?!? Who has a mirror that big in the shower?!? I’m dying….

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Let me say here that I think the actor playing WH has a rockin’ hawt body. No, he’s not ripped like Song Joong Ki or Ji Chang Wook; that takes extreme dieting and insane levels of working out. But WH looks mighty fine in the shower here, and when he was swimming with his sis in the first couple of episodes, he looked good in a swimsuit too. I’m laughing so much because this has to be the most modest and artlessly filmed shower scene in a Kdrama I’ve seen yet.

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But PD-nim has one more surprise in store for Shamrockmom…

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Dang you PD-nim! How did you find out about my secret kinks and fantasies?!? I can hardly breathe…my heart is in my throat. WTH is that foot shot about! Oh my goodness…I’m fanning myself and making incoherent noises! Forgive my delusions….all I can think is: In a few months when this ridiculousness is over and they’re married, that lucky girl BW is gonna get to have those adorably cute and soft feet next to hers all night under the covers in bed…so warm…and he’s got the perfect amount of manly hair on his legs too….Will she rub his feet one night…?  It was a lucky thing I watched this scene the first time at home. Otherwise my coworkers might have seen me blush to the roots of my hair and break out in a sweat!

Okay okay, back to the show…Dressed, sober, and at work the next day, WK gets BW’s resume/background check paperwork….and finds out his valuable employee was telling the truth:

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This is a treasure trove of info….Byeol’s birth date is August 12, 2011. Bang Wool’s birth date is January 22, 1989. This should settle any issues of character ages. WH visits BW in the test kitchen, and wastes no time getting to the issue at hand:

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It’s good to know that BW has some boundaries! She upbraids WH for asking about her personal life, and calls his follow-up question of “Are you a single mom?” offensive. Darn straight it is! But WH is used to getting his way….and says that since he likes her, she’s obligated to tell him! It’s also grounds for a lawsuit too, but this is Korea and not the US. BW tells WH that she was indeed married:

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This seems to take all the wind out of the sails of WH, and he leaves deeply chastened.

Bromance on the Rocks:

Woo Hyuk and Sang Chul go indoor rock climbing after work today. This is nothing new; they are regulars at the Rock Climbing Gym.

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Check out SC’s long arms and legs.

SC’s mind is elsewhere as he gets stuck, then loses his foothold and drops off the wall. Meanwhile WH confidently climbs to the top….Heh, I think we can check off the Metaphor box for today’s show! WH knows his assistant/butler is off his game:

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Then WH starts on a thinly veiled story version of his current dilemma: “My friend liked this woman who was ‘not fitting’ for him, confessed to her, then found out she has a son…” Make no mistake–SC is not fooled for one millisecond. The tiny gasp he makes here while WH is spilling his story squeezes my heart, and the look on his face says it all:

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SC recovers enough to ask if the woman in question liked WH’s ‘friend’ too–and WH says No, she didn’t. She didn’t want to take the time to date him either. SC decides it’s time to “wall” this off right here and now:

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WH contends that it’s difficult to cut off feelings, but SC argues that the ‘friend’ is merely curious. I fully understand this…BW is unlike any girl SC has seen his Boss date over the last 5 years. SC cares about BW too much to watch her be another of his Boss’s 1-month-and-done dating victims.

WH is wondering what got into SC’s Wheaties today:

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It’s because you just lit a raging forest fire under SC’s slow moving backside, my friend! SC says that relationships like this one are complicated, but at the end of the day:

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#amen

SC finishes it off with the advice to WH: Tell your “friend” to leave this woman alone! I don’t think that’s gonna happen, SC. The force of DJ’s heart is strong….so strong it will last another 80+ episodes until this story is done!

 

 

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