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I'm starting to tire of cold, clever women like you.

–To Nabi

Jang Rok Ha is the Crown Prince of Seo Seo and the leader of the Western Nak Cheon Company. Following the abdication of his father as king, Rok Ha is set to be coronated as the latest monarch of Seo Seo.

Rok Ha is a close friend of his aunt Jang Rei in their youth, but their relationship has dulled over the years, especially after Rei emigrated to and considered Ga Guk to be her newfound home rather than Seo Seo. Nevertheless, he has continually chased Rei, believing that he can provide her with the love and appreciation she deserves over King Jin Won's rather careless and ignorant treatment towards her.

History Edit

34 1

Rok Ha shows his future plan for Seo Seo to Rei

Rok Ha is the son of the First Prince of Seo Seo, who is the only son of King Jang Ryun. As a child, he had a rather close friendship with his similarly aged aunt, Rei. While he was aware of the various pranks and bullying her half-siblings did towards her, Rok Ha befriended Rei and widely considered her to be a prodigy and genius that Seo Seo needed.[1] In their youth, he often planned Seo Seo's future when he would become king together with Rei, whom he later became attached to, possibly to the point of regarding her as a potential spouse.[2]

After his father ascended to the throne following King Jang Ryun's death, Rok Ha was sent abroad for his education for at least three years, though he told Rei that he would do his best to finish it in one year. Rei's mother, Yeong Bi, was slowly poisoned to death by the First Princess, until she died and left Rei orphaned. Unbeknownst to Rok Ha, Rei had enough of her burdensome life in Seo Seo. At that time, her newly-coronated friend King Jin Won of Ga Guk met her once again after an encounter some time ago. As they played rock-paper-scissors over a bet, Rei won and asked Jin Won to take her out of Seo Seo as her prize for winning.

As seasons passed, Rok Ha presumably returned to Seo Seo, but Ga Guk had then requested for Rei to become a royal consort for King Jin Won. Though Rei was completely fine with it, Rok Ha strongly disagreed to it, as he claimed that Rei would be nothing but a political hostage to them. Amidst his protests, however, he was not able to do anything about her emigration to Ga Guk and her entrance to the palace.[3]

Since then, it is assumed that Rok Ha had harbored a relatively spiteful image towards Ga Guk, taking years for him to plan his plot of stirring the country into civil war in an attempt to bring Rei back to Seo Seo with him.

PlotEdit

Revolt Procurement ArcEdit

In Yu Hyang Ru, Rok Ha acts as Meng Gyeom's servant while they deliver the weapons from Seo Seo to the rebel army represented by Yi Jeok and Nabi. Rok Ha is served tea by Nabi first rather than his master Gyeom. Because of Nabi's unpredictable act, Rok Ha advises his servant Gyeom that Jeok and Nabi should not be underestimated.[4]

Plague ArcEdit

Rok Ha Crimson Moon

Rok Ha as the fake Crimson Moon

At the height of the plague at Moon's End Village, the ill people seek help from Physician Kim, the only doctor in the place. As they approach his empty clinic, an infected servant tells them that the physician came to the capital to find the cure for the plague, but failed to do so. As a result, the physician ran away knowing that he cannot do anything about this. Saying his last words, the servant succumbs to his death, making the people run away scared. During the ruckus, the Crimson Moon appears to the people and arms them with swords, inciting a rebellion. He also promises to "illuminate their path" as a sign of resistance to the Royal Family who does not do anything to stop the plague or to make a cure for it. In the woods, Rok Ha unmasks himself as the fake Crimson Moon and meets his servant Gyeom before leaving the plague-torn land.[5]

After his appearance as the "Crimson Moon", Rok Ha trails Nabi in the middle of the night, but he is immediately caught by the gisaeng. He claims to be just curious and worried as to where she might be heading unaccompanied late at night. She assures him that she is being accompanied and tells him that Yu Hyang Ru is not far away. Because that is his destination as well, Rok Ha invites them to go together, since he wants to consult about the rumor of the Crimson Moon arming the villagers of Moon's End Village. Alerted, Nabi tells him that she shall relay the information to Jeok. As they leave, Gyeom asks whether they will "take the bait"; Rok Ha confidently assures him they will surely do so.[6]

While laying low, Gyeom informs Rok Ha that their real target—King Jin Won—has appeared at Moon's End Village where they are staying. Though appearing aloof, Rok Ha sets out with Gyeom, and they see the red-haired man almost unaccompanied. Gyeom further informs him that the king has come to the village to meet a woman. Intrigued, they go someplace to meet her.

Rok Ha and Gyeom visit prostitute

Rok Ha and Gyeom visit "Nabi"

As they arrive at the location, they are greeted by a woman. Based from the red lantern hung from the eaves, the lady's tacky and risqué dress, and her cheap and musky perfume, Rok Ha infers the woman to be a prostitute, fueling his confusion whether the king really went to a faraway place just to meet such woman. They offer her ten nyang and question her about Jin Won's recent visit, but she claims that he left at once after she told him that her alias is "Nabi".[2]

Patching the hints altogether, Rok Ha assumed that Jin Won wanted to visit another Nabi, someone Rok Ha and Gyeom know. Taking this knowledge to his advantage, he and Gyeom devise a plan to lure the king to his death. That night, while Won is at the clinic, Gyeom dresses as Nabi and subtly lures Won. He sets out and chases after her until they reach the edge of a cliff. As Won reaches out to the hooded figure, he sees her wearing the Crimson Moon mask, and she pushes him off the cliff. Yoo Dan Ah, who followed Won to the cliff, tries to save him, but she ends up falling with him as well.

Rok Ha complements Gyeom for successfully accomplishing their task. Gyeom asks him whether he should check on the two who fell down, but Rok Ha tells him that she is collateral damage and that Ga Guk shall nonetheless be embroiled in civil war whether he died from his fall or not.[7]

Rebel Army Suppression: Setting in Motion Edit

After the incident at Moon's End Village, Rok Ha stays at an inn, where Rok Ha hears some magpies crying and senses that a guest is coming.[8] His inference is later proven correct, as he warmly welcomes his aunt Rei as his visitor.[9] Rei angrily accuses Rok Ha of plotting to plunge Jin Won to his death, to which Rok Ha replies that it shall result to war, an event that he anticipates. He reasons out that he merely wishes to regain Seo Seo's lost dignity even if it means engaging a war with Ga Guk, who has since belittled Seo Seo in spite of a peace treaty.

Rok Ha asks Rei how she knew that he was behind the plot on Jin Won. Rei tells him about the red letter and the dream flower she sensed on the king's garb, earning Rok Ha's admiration yet again towards her. He informs her that his father has agreed to abdicate, making Rok Ha next in line to the throne. He also tells her his reasons for heading to Ga Guk personally, namely to stir the country to civil war and to ask Rei to return with him to Seo Seo. She declines his offer, claiming that Ga Guk will forever be her home.

Rok Ha calls Gyeom

Rok Ha calls Gyeom as Rei is due for pregnancy

Filled with disbelief, Rok Ha informs her that her inherited land is forfeited, and he continues to pressure her into going back with him to Seo Seo. Under intense tension coupled with the fact that she is nearing her due date, Rei's water breaks. Rok Ha calls for Gyeom to fetch the midwife, but Rei tells Ji Ryeon for them to head back to the palace. She then bids Rok Ha goodbye.[10]

Rebel Army Suppression: Execution Edit

Gyeom and Rok Ha watch Yu Hyang Ru burn

Gyeom and Rok Ha watch Yu Hyang Ru burn down in flames

Rok Ha and Gyeom arrive at Yu Hyang Ru supposedly for a business deal with Jeok and Nabi. However, as Bi Yeong Pal Mu arrive and raze the gisaeng house to the ground, they watch it burn from afar.

As Gyeom remarks how the rebel army has suffered quite some damage and total annihilation, Rok Ha cancels their deal as of that day, after which they leave the ensuing chaos.[11]

Bridal Selection Arc Edit

45 2

Jeok offers Rok Ha a deal

Following the defeat of the rebel army few days later, Jeok meets with Rok Ha, who has found out about his real identity as the crown prince of Seo Seo. As Jeok acknowledges Rok Ha using his royal title, Jeok then opens a deal with him that would be mutually beneficial for both their parties.[12]

The next day, he visits Nabi at the palace and tells her about his and Jeok's meeting the previous night. Initially adamant at him, Nabi remains steadfast in her cover, avoiding for her cover to be blown. However, Rok Ha shows her Young Hwa's knife from ten years ago, proof that Jeok has put his trust in the crown prince of Seo Seo. They then plan to attend the palace banquet that night, with Nabi set to have a performance meant to attract the king. At that point that the king is to approach her, she is given one chance to kill King Jin Won.

By nighttime, Rok Ha approaches Queen Mother Yoon Yeon Lee and jeeringly tells her how dull and idle the banquet has turned. As the Queen Mother tries to disregard the insult, he asks for her permission to allow him to bring out some entertainment, which turns out to be a shadow dance performance. Before she could answer, King Jin Won arrives and allows the performance. As the king passes by him, Rok Ha senses that he reeks of alcohol. Nabi then performs the famed shadow dance and, as per their prediction, the king approaches her from behind, thereby giving her a chance to kill the monarch.[13]

However, Nabi is unable to kill King Jin Won, while the latter collapses out of intoxication. The banquet is shaken, and palace servants and guards rush to the king. During the commotion, Rok Ha immediately instructs Nabi to flee for her safety and abandon the plan.[14]

Rok Ha cautions Rei

Rok Ha cautions Rei when speaking of her forfeited inherited land

After the banquet incident, Rok Ha visits Rei and her twins at her chambers. She inquires about the dancer he brought the night before and how he apparently used her to capture the attention of the king, but Rok Ha merely dodges her questions. In the end, Rei asks him if his concern is her inherited land that he has already taken. Rok Ha asks her to speak with utmost care, lest news of her land's forfeiture may spread and affect her standing in Ga Guk and the bridal selection.

Nevertheless, he praises her tenacity, rising up the ranks of even becoming a bridal candidate amidst the Queen Mother's disapproval. Hence, he advises her to make her decisions with utmost caution, since she now has more to lose. Rei asks him until when he plans to stay in Ga Guk, to which he replies until the royal wedding. He still insists on having her return to Seo Seo with him, but, in the meantime, he promises to keep his silence in exchange for a favor from her.[15]

After some time, Rok Ha and Jeok meet once again to devise a new plan, which involves a hinted infiltration at the palace.[16]

Creation and Conception Edit

Rok Ha's early design

Rok Ha's early design

Muryu illustrated and designed Rok Ha however she wanted to. After Rok Ha's initial design, she thought that he resembled Yi Won too much. Thus, she decided to modify his character design before ending up with Rok Ha's final design and appearance. Moreover, while discussing about Yi Hwi's "pretty" design even during conception, Muryu said that she "felt bad for Rok Ha", possibly with her final design for him.[17]

QuotesEdit

  • (To Gyeom) "Feminine wiles can be a formidable trap."[4]
  • (As the Crimson Moon) "The age of the sun's protection is now over."[5]
  • (Referring to Won and Rei, respectively) "Drunk on women and wine, he was an ignorant king who wasn't even aware of his nation crumbling and his own life falling apart. Pathetic. That's all he was, Rei—the man you abandoned me and Seo Seo for."[18]

Trivia Edit

  • Throughout the series, Rok Ha and his aunt Rei are both the same age.[4][19]

ReferencesEdit

  1. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 42
  2. 2.0 2.1 Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 34
  3. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 43
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 25
  5. 5.0 5.1 Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 30
  6. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 31
  7. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 35
  8. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 38
  9. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 41
  10. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 42
  11. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 44
  12. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 45
  13. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 46
  14. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 47
  15. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 48
  16. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 49
  17. Twelve Nights part two postscript
  18. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 36
  19. Twelve Nights webtoon, chapter 8

NavigationEdit

Characters of Twelve Nights
Ga Guk
Royal Family Ahn YoungHyun BinJin HyulJin JeokJin WonUnnamed Baby PrinceUnnamed Baby PrincessYi HwiYi Sae GiYoon Yeon Lee
Ministers Hwang Se HyungKim Hak GyuSa Hwa HyeonSeo In Seon WooWi Ji HyunYi HaYoo Ja Gyeom
Bi Yeong Pal Mu Baek AhBaek JuBaek LinBaek RyungBaek SaHeuk Rang
Bi Yeong Ship Mu Baek HoBaek Yoo ShinGil Mu JinYi Ha
Deung Ha Bul Myung Baek HoCrimson MoonGil Mu JinNabiSeol HwaSeo In Seon WooWol Young HwaYi HwiYi Jeok
Yu Hyang Ru NabiWol Young HwaYi Jeok
Others ChungHwang Se RyeonHyunMa Mi SongNam Yang HeonSoriWoonYi Ha's WifeYoo Dan AhYoo Dan Ah's Mother
Seo Seo
Royal Family First PrinceFirst PrincessJang ReiJang Rok HaJang RyunSecond PrincessThree Wives of Jang RyunUnnamed Baby PrinceUnnamed Baby PrincessYeong Bi
Others Gwak Ji RyeonMeng Gyeom
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