Episode 14

Mad Doctor Asclepius
1 month ago
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“Follow me.”

Right after Chiron’s initiation declaration, a pure white-looking boy grabbed me.
A fragile body and small stature, a sickly beautiful boy that could evoke maternal instincts from women.
At first, I thought he was a girl, but perhaps he noticed my thoughts.

“I’m not a girl, I’m a boy. Mistake that, and you’ll die in my hands.”

With that threatening comment, I quietly gulped down my curiosity.

Anyway, the place where I was led by the hand of that pure white boy was a quiet one-story building at the edge of the forest.
The place I was taken to was a clinic filled with the smell of disinfectant alcohol and the bitter scent of herbs.

“Sit down.”

After seating me in a medical chair, the white boy, busy moving between the shelves and desk, opened his mouth.

“First, let me introduce myself, my name is Asclepius. I am the head of this clinic. You guys, the battle-obsessed boars, are the ones who see this the most. Let’s see…”

“Excuse me….?”

“Quiet, I’m concentrating.”

His green eyes gave a stern warning, making it scary to even try to speak.
I closed my mouth, Asclepius nodded in satisfaction and then pulled out clean bandages, herbs, and a wooden container in front of me, and, without hesitation, grabbed my arm.

“Let’s see, the bone is damaged, the muscle is swollen like a balloon, and the leg?”

-Thud!

Asclepius suddenly tapped my knee with a small wooden hammer.
Of course, it didn’t hurt, but my leg twitched reflexively, and I glared at him, wondering what this guy was doing.
The white mad doctor continued the examination undeterred.

“The nerves are intact. Fortunately, we can save some nectar.”

“Nectar?”

The famous drink of the gods in Greek mythology.
Why is that suddenly being mentioned here?

Sigh, as expected, you reacted to that too.”

Asclepius, who was examining my back, chest, and stomach, chuckled as if he knew it.

“The drinks and foods of the gods grant immortality to the gods. But if ordinary humans consume them, they can’t handle the power and turn into a handful of blood and flesh.”

However, for students who enter this forest, it shows a different power.

“For those who inherit the blood of the gods or are naturally strong to a certain level, it acts as a sort of panacea.”

Ambrosia, the food of the gods that makes their bodies eternal, is a physical medicine that heals any wound instantly.
Nectar, the drink of the gods that makes their souls immortal, is a spiritual medicine that alleviates any soul’s pain.

Of course, it tastes good too.
Adding a joke and shrugging his shoulders, Asclepius began to take out potions from the ceiling and mix them here and there.

“Usually, ambrosia and nectar don’t leave Olympus. But thanks to my father and mentor, Chiron, I get a bit for medicinal purposes.”

“Oh… Is it safe?”

Wasn’t this the forest of Chiron, where all sorts of heroes gathered?
Heroes were synonymous with troublemakers who brought all kinds of storms.
Do you think those guys would leave the SSS-class items, the food of the gods, alone?

“You might as well put a fish in front of a cat.”

“…You’re quite a peculiar one. Hearing about ambrosia and nectar, and yet you are worrying about security?”

As someone who had dealt with numerous troublemakers called heroes, Asclepius tilted his head as if my words were quite unexpected.

“Surprisingly, you might be someone I can talk to. The blockheads in this damned forest can’t even think that far. Here, here, and here, drink them in order.”

Asclepius sighed while handing over some unknown pills and drugged wine, seeming thoroughly fed up.

“This… is it safe to drink?”

“It might taste bitter, but if you want to walk on two legs tomorrow, I’d recommend drinking it.”

He’s a healer, so he wouldn’t give something that’s not safe to consume, right?
As I swallowed the bitter pills and the strangely flavored wine, I couldn’t help but be amazed by their efficacy.

“What exactly are these medicines?”

“Do they work?”

“Very well.”

As soon as I drank it, the swollen acupuncture points and muscles, even the cracks in my bones, began to heal, and even my turbulent energy started to stabilize.
It was just slightly less effective than the Godly Demon Pill of the Demonic Cult or the Great Vitality Pill of Shaolin.
Even at this level, in the martial arts world, all sorts of martial artists would want to buy it, even if they had to pour out gold.

“I’m glad it works well. But you haven’t fully recovered yet, so if you don’t want it to get worse, calm down and sit.”

“Ah, got it.”

Even after creating such an incredible medicine, Asclepius just put herbs and potions into a stone mortar and ground them while lamenting.

“Rumors have already spread quietly. They say there’s the food of the gods at the clinic. As a result, this month’s nighttime break-in attempts have reached sixty-three. I can’t even count the frontal robberies, pickpocketing, and fraud attempts. Even though Master Chiron issued strict orders, they couldn’t stop the curiosity of Hermes’s children and the wild ones.”

“Oh…”

The weary face of this pale healer resembled that of an office worker exhausted by the pranks of immature team members and overwhelming workloads.

“Of course, after making them suffer from terrible stomachaches and diarrhea for about a week, they quieted down.”

Just look at those eyes, glistening with killing intent. Judging by the atmosphere, it seemed he’d already taken care of a few guys.
It made sense, considering he was at the level of the God of Medicine from Greek mythology, and, at his age, was casually handing out medicines on par with Shaolin’s great pills. He couldn’t be sane.

Yet, even as these thoughts ran through my mind, his hands moved swiftly and skillfully, applying medicine to my limbs and wrapping them in bandages, showcasing a level of proficiency befitting a future God of Medicine.

“At least your bones aren’t completely shattered or broken, so you don’t need a splint, but because you overexerted yourself, your muscles and tendons are slightly damaged. I’ve applied medicine and bandaged you up, so don’t touch it.”

“Is it over now?”

“No, there’s still one more question. A veeeeery important question.”

With a sinister smile, Asclepius sat on the chair opposite me.
His eyes, scrutinizing me, were shimmering, much like those of a madman observing a new subject for experimentation.

“Now, as the healer of this forest and the representative of Chiron’s medical knowledge, I ask you. What exactly are you?”

“What?”

As I retorted to the sudden question, Asclepius shook his head as if he knew everything already.

“Ah, don’t even think about feigning ignorance. It’s unlikely that there are two beings in the world who can consume ambrosia and nectar, even in tiny amounts, and digest them so effortlessly without any sensation of heat or discomfort.”

“Ambrosia? Nectar?”

The food of the gods that was causing him a security headache recently?
I ate that?

“Could it be that it was in the medicine from before…?”

“Correct. Normally, even Jason and Theseus would get all riled up and suffer after consuming it, and even that boar (Hercules) creature starts convulsing because it makes his body itch. All because of the unique properties of ambrosia and nectar.”

The pure white healer began to explain gently, as if teaching a young student.

“Ambrosia and nectar are more like, well… rather than material food, it’s easier to think of them as substances processed from a more special aura. They are very special substances that directly affect the human body and soul.”

Aura, in the martial arts world, was referred to as innate true energy or natural true energy.
The food and drink of the gods were condensed with that energy?

“The foreign aura around your navel. It’s not even a natural body organ, but aura gathers around it, spreads to your limbs, and circulates. Clearly, according to your will.
The ambrosia and nectar in the medicine and wine also seem to be absorbed and focused on healing by the auras you control.”

“…!!”

For a moment, my two lifetimes became insignificant, and I got goosebumps on my body.
Just by touching me a few times, he detected my dantian and the inner energy of Martial Cultivation and skillfully confirmed it.
Had I become too lax living as Dianes? To have my energy detected so easily by someone else…

“It seems that aura was the reason you could achieve a draw while sparring with Master Chiron… But how is that possible? Only gods whose bodies and souls are made of aura or monsters born with it can wield aura so naturally, as if breathing. You were gathering and wielding aura within your body while having a physical form. Even Hercules could barely muster aura with his energy.”

In this world, there was also aura.
The thing called aura or orah was the exclusive domain of powerful monsters, gods, and heroes born from the bloodline of those gods.
However, reflecting on Asclepius’s words, he said that beings who could freely handle energy like me were either gods or monsters.

“Very… interesting. You are perhaps…”

Eyes shining with innocent madness, like a child who found a fascinating toy.
Those eyes were ones I was also very familiar with.

The Demon Priestess, Gong So-yeon.
With her eyes blazing as she rushed at me, she wondered how someone with my physique could remain unharmed despite inheriting the true demonic energy of the Twelve Heavenly Demons.
She had even tried to sneak into the Heavenly Demon’s chamber to draw my blood.

‘She calmed down a bit after I extracted something else from her body, though.’

Anyway, it seemed that medical professionals, whether students or practitioners, always had a streak of madness.
The more skilled they were, the more unhinged they appeared.

“Anyway, if you don’t speak frankly to me right now, I might have to report this to my father. A human handling aura so freely, unlike gods or monsters… It could be the seed of a great disaster…”

That being said, I couldn’t hold back my laughter at the threat from the fool in front of me.

“Pffftt, puhahahahaha!”

The eyes of the pale guy, who had been acting eerily like a mad scientist, widened in surprise at my unexpected reaction.
No way. Had he really tried to threaten me just now?

“Hehe, who do you think you’re trying to pull such a nasty trick on, Whitey?”

“Wh-what?”

Let’s see. If Whitey’s dad was the God of Medicine… was it Apollo?

“Perhaps you already know?”

“…What?”

Seeing Whitey dumbfounded and speechless, I smirked.
You bastard. Do you think I got the Heavenly Demon’s position for free?
I worked for it.

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