The Medicine Hall.
A place that was originally meant to heal disciples who had become injured from training or had fallen sick.
The conditions of living for warriors were different from that of civilians. And because of this, there were sects that were completely focused on studying herbs and creating their own medicine halls.
In other words, it could be said that a great sect needed to have a good Medicine Hall.
But that wasn’t the case for Mount Hua, though.
In a good way, the Medicine Hall of Mount Hua was too small, and in a bad way, it was like an unwanted pest eating a bountiful crop.
It became clearer the more one thought about it.
What was the use of a Medicine Hall if nobody was injured? The people of Mount Hua didn’t even leave their main gates. So, no matter what, the disciples would never get hurt.
Moreover, one had to practice excessively to get hurt while training, but in Mount Hua, each disciple was a disappointment, and there was no one who would train or hurt their body.
So, the only duty of the Hall was to needlessly provide medicine for the healthy and strong disciples who had upset stomachs at times.
So where on earth would they obtain the skills to make a pill when they hadn’t even treated anything serious?
Hyun Young was quite worried about the lay of the situation.
There were times when the sun would shine even in the deepest mouse hole, and that day had finally come for the Medicine Hall of Mount Hua.
Strange groans resonated from that place this particular day.
“D-Don’t rest. Never… never think of resting! Don’t!”
Un Gak had red eyes as he barely spoke. There were nerves popping out on his forearms as he kept stirring the concoction in the pot.
But contrary to the strong arms that kept stirring, the face of the man looked hardly human. There were dark shadows that reached his chin under his eyes, and his beard, which was thickly grown, looked horrible and unkempt.
It was a face that was hard to look at. Because a lot of sweat had dried up, deposits of salt could be seen on his face.
The only thing on Un Gak’s face that seemed to be working was his eyes.
“I… it will work! For sure!”
But his eyes looked ghastly.
His face looked exhausted, but as a testament to his will, his eyes were burning with life even at this moment.
“The amount of internal qi cannot go down! You need to maintain it in the same way! Sect Leader! Elder!”
“I-I might die.”
Hyun Young and Hyun Sang couldn’t even speak. They were just holding onto the pot. Hyun Jong was so exhausted that his bones could be seen through his skin.
“How much more is left?”
“One more day”
“Uh, another day…”
Hyun Jong’s face distorted uncomfortably.
At this point, they were essentially human qi dispensers.
They had been here the entire time supplying qi into the pot. Occasionally, there would be elders coming in so that he could cultivate more qi with their help. This had continued for nine whole days.
The reason others could not take over was simple. It was because there was no one else in Mount Hua who was able to supply as much qi as they could.
The other elders wouldn’t have lasted half this long. So, Mount Hua had no choice but to depend on them like this.
Hyun Jong’s ears suddenly picked up something other than the normal groans he was now accustomed to hearing.
“Tch. Tch. It isn’t that difficult.”
Hyun Jong and Hyun Sang turned their heads in the direction of the voice as soon as they heard it.
“Come on. Open your mouths, people!”
Hyun Jong opened his mouth, and Hyun Young poured porridge into it. It was Hyun Young who had come to see them every day and had fed them, saying that they had to eat something. But at the same time, he was also telling them to not leave their place. Finally, Hyun Young decided to feed them here.
“Sahyung, do it.”
“It is fine. It is…”
“Shut it, open your mouth!”
Like a baby bird, Hyun Sang opened his mouth as Hyun Young fed him. He was at an age where he should be feeding his grandchildren, but he was being fed like this!
But Hyun Young didn’t seem to feel the least bit of regret while watching his sahyungs.
“Don’t say things like it is tough! If it is hard, think back to three years ago! It was a time when we were almost on the street!”
The two people, who had looked like they would die any moment until a minute ago, began to feel energized.
Right, no matter how they achieved it, this was their struggle for a good future. Could it be compared to the hardships of their disciples who had traveled so far to get these things done?
‘We need to succeed!’
‘Even if I die standing here, I will complete this and die!’
Hyun Sang was bleeding from his nose. However, as if he was used to it, Hyun Young would just wipe it off with the cloth next to him.
“Concentrate! Sect Leader! Concentrate!’
Uu Gak kept stirring the pot. The madness could be seen in the eyes even as he moved the spatula.
“Just one day! Just one day more!”
“Right! One day!”
“Just one day! Just one day!”
‘You survived this long; can’t you hold on for one more day?’
The inside of the Medicine Hall was hot. The adults of Mount Hua, who were ready to sacrifice themselves for the future of the sect, began to transfer their qi into the Soul Vitality Pill.
‘Something is definitely happening.’
The fortunate thing was that they could see that it was done.
There was a pure white liquid boiling in the pot. The materials that had been put in the pot couldn’t be found anymore.
“Ummm. The scent is getting stronger.”
With each day, the liquid inside the pot was giving out an increasingly stronger mellow and pure scent. And this obviously meant that something was happening.
The three men stared at the pot.
The sound of an iron spatula rubbing against the pot could be heard. They had been listening to this continuously for nine days. It was to the point where they felt like they would listen to it in their dreams too.
“Elder! My qi is becoming weak!”
“Ugh. We need to do this!”
Hyun Sang was infusing his qi into the pot with a dreadful face. Sweat dripped down his forehead like rain.
They were still holding on a few hours ago, but now it felt like their bones were being crushed.
As they bit their lips, trying to steel their minds, they heard a soft, weak voice.
“Is it hard?”
The three of them looked to the side.
The person who had watched them silently the entire time they were working was right there chewing on the jerky.
‘Right, you put a lot of work into this; you really did a lot of things. So, you might want to watch the moment of completion of this Soul Vitality Pill; I fully understand that. But…’
‘Why are you eating food here? Why!’
When the eyes of the elders focused on the jerky in his hand, he smiled brightly and asked.
“Do you want some?”
He was a very kindhearted child, but he had the fatal flaw of being ignorant.
Hyun Jong coughed awkwardly and opened his mouth.
“It looks like there is no work for you here, so do you really need to be here?”
“Oh, I want to go too.”
The answer came from another side.
“What useless words!”
It was Hyun Young.
“Knowing how important this is, this is what you are doing!”
“My sahyungs and the others. And that Un Gak there, do you think you’ve done something great? We are the ones who wasted our blood and money until Mount Hua was able to reach this point!”
Thinking about the painful past, Hyun Jong and Hyun Young couldn’t even open their mouths.
“…but what good will that brat do here!”
“You think a talisman like him is of no use? And shouldn’t the golden toad be inside the house instead of outside! It is safe to have him by our side, so don’t even dream of kicking him out.”
‘Yah, you idiot.’
‘You are a thief!’
‘Does it make sense to call a person a talisman, especially when you don’t even know how to use a talisman? And now you want to make him torture us?’
Hyun Jong couldn’t shake off the thought that Mount Hua was going backward at times. But he didn’t want to force Chung Myung out either.
‘Actually, I am a little nervous.’
Although this was such a huge thing, it was uncomfortable to do it without anyone present. Besides, what would happen if Chung Myung made a mess outside when their hands were tied to this pot?
‘Being next to Chung Myung brought them a weird sense of security.’
Except for that hellish sound he made every time he took a bite of the jerky…
Chung Myung, who was chewing on the jerky, frowned.
“Medicine Hall Head. I think your hands have slowed down a little.”
“I-Is that so?”
“Elder… Your qi is going down.’
“…i-is that so?”
“If it changes like that, the effect of the Soul Vitality Pill will decrease by a lot! I collected all of those herbs with such difficulty… what will we do if it runs out!”
They were all right words.
Which was why it was even more annoying. He seemed to understand why people who spoke the unbridled truth were always killed first.
“One day! Just one day! Don’t falter! Even if you have to squeeze the life out of your heart!”
Everyone felt motivated again. But at that moment…
Un Gak’s hands, which were holding the iron spatula, began to tremble.
“Uh, what is… uhhh!”
His hands trembled like they were having a seizure.
Un Gak shouted in fear.
In order to blend it properly, he would have to constantly stir it at the same speed. And he would have to stir them right white, infusing the right amount of qi.
Failure to do that would just result in a huge waste of very expensive stuff!
But no matter how hard he tried to move his hand, it wasn’t listening to him.
Un Gak, who understood the situation, shouted with a pale face.
“No, why! Not like this!”
“I-I cannot do this anymore!”
“Shall we call the staff of the Medicine Hall?”
When Hyun Young asked that, Un Gak shook his head and replied in haste.
“They won’t do. It has to be someone at the level of an elder! Someone with enough internal qi!”
“I-Is there no one else here?”
Wasn’t Hyun Young also aware that he wasn’t as skilled as the other elders?
“Hurry up! N-no! The ingredients!”
Un Gak let out a desperate cry for help, and Chung Myung got up.
And he rushed over to Un Gak and took the spatula.
“You are exhausted after just a couple days of stirring!”
“Ah, no, it isn’t that…”
Un Gak tried to think of an excuse as he slumped down. As soon as he let go of the spatula, it felt like all the power in his body had drained away.
As soon as one person collapsed, the rest began to fall like dominos.
Hyun Sang fell back, bleeding heavily from his nose.
Hyun Young, ran to Hyun Sang, scared for his life. Even he felt it was unreasonable to hold on any longer, especially after the nine continuous days of infusing internal qi.
“Hyun… Hyun Sang! …um?”
Hyun Jong also sat down heavily.
Sweat was dripping from his body like a waterfall. Although he was able to replenish his qi, his body didn’t support him because of his age.
Hyun Young looked at his collapsed sahyungs.
‘T-this isn’t right…?’
‘There was just one day left… what would happen if everyone just fainted? What about the pill? Is this the end?’
It was the moment when Hyun Young was about to fall into despair.
A strange sight occurred in front of him.
“I should just die than do this!”
Chung Myung yelled as he grabbed the pot with one hand and then the spatula with the other. He then began to stir it.
“How did it get to this! You should not fail even if you are facing death!”
Hyun Young was shocked, and it felt like several hands were reaching out from Chung Myung’s back… with one hand infusing qi and the other stirring.
He hurriedly threw away his sahyungs and ran to Chung Myung.
“C-Chung Myung! Are you fine?”
“Even if I am not fine, I need to make this work!”
“Right! Yes! That is our Chung Myung!”
“Stay back for a moment.”
Hyun Young stepped back right away. Now he was the one who didn’t ask anything more.
Chung Myung raised his qi as much as he could. He could feel the ingredients in the pot with his qi.
On the surface, it looked like they were all melted, but it wasn’t like that. Chung Myung could feel them against the spatula as he stirred. And in some places, they seemed lumped.
Perhaps, this was the secret of the pill.
“Okay! This is how it happens! Let’s do this right!”
‘What happens if the herbs come into perfect harmony?’
‘…and that too with my qi?’
‘What would be the result of adding the purest qi into the best pill?’
Chung Myung slowly fell into a state of trance and began to stir the pot.
Hyun Jong saw it clearly at that moment.
The energy rising from the back of Chung Myung shone in five different colors.
‘Do it in moderation.’
‘You seem to be climbing up too fast.’
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