In Training (5)
“W-What's gotten into this bastard?!” The assistant instructor panicked and rushed toward the recruit on the ground.
“Recruit No.97! Can you hear me?! Recruit!”
The assistant grabbed Recruit No.97's shoulders and shook him around, but the latter was already half-unconscious.
He hadn't blacked out yet, but his whole body was violently convulsing, perhaps related to the lack of oxygen intake.
“W-What should I do?! R-Right, medic! Call for a medic, now!” The assistant instructor called for a medic after finally realizing the urgency of the situation.
“I'm coming!” A nearby medic ran over at full steam.
He almost did a baseball slide to stop and plop down next to the unresponsive recruit.
After a brief check, his complexion turned pale.
The assistant instructor cried out.
“Y-yes, sir!” the medic replied and tried to perform first aid, but he wasn’t a doctor.
The recruit's condition was already far too gone for him to provide basic medical assistance.
Unable to do anything concrete, the medic could only helplessly sweat buckets before roaring, “Ambulance! Call an ambulance, right away!”
“You dumbass, where would we get an ambulance in here…” The assistant instructor swore while urgently looking around.
This situation had flustered him so much that he even forgot to wipe all the sweat dripping down his face.
He could tell that this situation was beyond his control.
A high-ranking officer had to be present.
Unfortunately, officers were never there when you needed them the most now, were they? “H-Hey, someone go and report to the 2nd Platoon Commander! Hurry up!”
“Yes, sir!” One of the assistant instructors watching from the side hurriedly ran inside the gas chamber.
“Second Platoon Commander, sir! A recruit outside is behaving strangely!”
“What are you talking about?” The 2nd Platoon Commander asked in an irritated voice.
“Sir, that recruit's convulsing uncontrollably! We must… Cough! We must do something quickly, sir!”
The 2nd Platoon Commander shot up to his feet, his complexion instantly turning ashen.
He wasn't dumb enough to think that an assistant instructor would rush inside the gas chamber without a gas mask just to spout nonsense.
Which meant something bad was really happening outside.
He quickly dashed outside the gas chamber.
“What's going on here?! Tell me what happened!” The 2nd Platoon Commander threw off his gas mask with his trembling hands.
He noticed the recruit lying on the ground, already teetering at the edge of life and death.
“A doctor! Where is the doctor, dammit!”
The medic was jolted awake by that question.
The situation made him panic, and he had forgotten about the presence of the base's surgeon.
“H-He must be in the command center, sir!”
“Bloody hell! We're doing a CBR training today, so he should have been on standby right here! That stupid motherf*cker! Call him right now! Hurry up!”
The medic got up and tried to leave, only for the gas mask thrown by the 2nd Platoon Commander to hit him in the face.
The medic could only stare at the commander in a daze at that sudden strike.
“Hey, you dumb sh*t! Who'll look after the recruit if you leave?! You stay and help this recruit while someone else should go and fetch the doctor!”
“Ah!” The medic nodded vigorously as thick sweat drops fell nonstop from his forehead.
He then grabbed the recruit's shoulders and tried to stabilize him.
“Recruit No.97! Hold on! Stay with me!”
“Do something, will ya?!” The 2nd Platoon Commander yelled as fright began taking over him at the sight of the recruit's complexion getting paler and paler.
His gut feeling was strongly warning him that this kid was about to kick the bucket unless something was done sooner or later.
“Go and fetch the doctor already!”
“Y-yes, sir!” One of the assistant instructors hurriedly dashed away.
However, the 2nd Platoon Commander's gut feeling was getting even darker.
He realized that something bad would surely happen even before the doctor could get here.
“Sir, shouldn't you be radioing the command center instead?”
“Ah!” The 2nd Platoon Commander sobered up instantly at that cautious question of an assistant instructor.
He urgently yanked out his walkie-talkie.
“We have a situation here at the CBR training area! I repeat, we have a situation at the CBR training area! We request the immediate presence of the base's doctor on site.
I repeat! We request the immediate presence of the base's doctor!”
The urgent call for a doctor was now made, but that didn't mean the immediate situation had improved.
The recruit's complexion had now turned sickly blue.
The 2nd Platoon Commander urgently asked the medic, “Does this recruit have some kind of a chronic illness?”
“I—I'm not sure, sir.
The base's doctor must've noted all chronic illnesses of the camp's recruits, sir.”
“Bloody hell…” The 2nd Platoon Commander could only grit his teeth and stomp his feet in frustration.
At this rate, he might really see a casualty during a training he was overseeing.
“Excuse me for a minute.” Recruit No.100, Kang Jin-Ho, walked up to the recruit lying on the ground.
“W-Wait! Step aside, recruit! Don't interfere!” one of the assistant instructors shouted at him in a fluster.
Kang Jin-Ho responded with a brief shake of his head.
“Please step aside for a minute.”
“Say what?!” Kang Jin-Ho had simply returned the order to step aside right back.
Of course, the assistant instructor wouldn't take that lying down.
“You dumb sh*t! Can't you see that now isn't the time to mess around?!”
“No, I can see that.
That's why I'm stepping up.”
“…?!” The assistant instructor's eyes powerfully quaked.
He suddenly remembered that Kang Jin-Ho was the first one who discovered Recruit No.97's abnormal condition before anybody else.
'Maybe he’s from a medical school before enlisting?'
Obviously, you would find medical school students deciding to enlist in the middle of their studies, so the assistant instructor thought his hypothesis might not be off the mark.
“H-Hey! I told you to step aside, recruit!”
Even so, he couldn't let a recruit take over this situation.
Who would be held responsible if something went wrong here? Of course, the situation had already devolved to the point where someone would still be blamed later on.
However, Kang Jin-Ho remained unstoppable…
“Sir, he'll die.”
The assistant instructor's eyes quaked even more.
Kang Jin-Ho pointed at the convulsing recruit.
“If I don't do something right now, he will die in three minutes.”
The assistant instructor turned his head to look at the 2nd Platoon Commander, knowing that the decision wasn't up to him.
The 2nd Platoon Commander racked his brain, but he still failed to think of a way out of this crappy situation.
He could also tell that the recruit's condition was getting worse by the second.
It was to the point that the doctor’s arrival might not make much of a difference.
A casualty during a training he was supervising? That would be the death of his career—a blight that could never be erased.
The 2nd Platoon Commander quietly muttered, “Let him be…”
“I said, let him be!”
Right now, the 2nd Platoon Commander felt like he would grasp at straws if that could help.
From his point of view, this whole thing started off with Kang Jin-Ho's attitude, but did that mean he should keep on ignoring Recruit No.100's opinion?
Kang Jin-Ho wordlessly pushed the assistant instructor aside and approached the recruit on the ground.
Everyone spectated this scene in a daze.
“Hmm…” Kang Jin-Ho deeply frowned after pressing his hand on the recruit's chest.
Turbid and polluted energy was filling up the recruit’s throat and chest area.
Kang Jin-Ho didn't know the modern medical term for such a condition.
That didn't matter, though, as he already knew how to deal with a situation like this.
Kang Jin-Ho slowly and steadily pressed down on the recruit's upper abdomen.
“Cough! Cough!” A series of loud coughs exploded forth from the recruit as bloody phlegm bubbled out of his mouth.
“W-What the heck?!” The assistant instructor nearby gasped.
The recruit's reaction was so visceral that he seemed to be suffering even more than before.
His limbs began flailing about everywhere.
“Grab his arms and legs! You idiots, stop staring and grab his limbs!” The 2nd Platoon Commander cried out in fury.
The assistant instructors rushed in to grab the recruit’s flailing limbs before pressing them down to the ground.
Kang Jin-Ho paid no attention to his surroundings and focused on driving out the turbid energy from the recruit.
The internal energy leaving Kang Jin-Ho's palm entered the recruit and stimulated his own energy.
“Cough! Cough!” The recruit twisted and turned as blood gushed out of his mouth next.
“H-Hey—won't he die at this rate?!” The 2nd Platoon Commander gasped in fear.
“Hah-ahhh…” The recruit suddenly let out a lengthy exhale, and his convulsions became weaker and weaker.
It was as if he had timed that just to mock the 2nd Platoon Commander for worrying.
“W-What's going on here?”
But no one felt relieved when the recruit’s convulsions stopped.
In fact, they were even more scared than before.
“I-Is he still breathing?! Medic!”
The medic hurriedly pressed his ear closer to the recruit's nose.
“Sir! His breathing seems normal.
It's a little shallow, but this much is acceptable…”
The assistant instructors holding down the recruit's limbs finally let go and stepped back.
The medic confirmed that the recruit's breathing had returned to normal as he slowly nodded.
This recruit's condition seems stable.
When the doctor gets here, we can let him take over.”
Haaa…” The 2nd Platoon Commander sighed in relief.
He wanted to plop down on his butt if he could, but there were too many people watching, so he had to force himself to stand upright.
The last five minutes were a real rollercoaster of emotions, weren't they? He grunted and glanced at the recruit.
“What was wrong with this brat, then?”
“I'm also not sure, sir…” The medic could only alternate his confused gaze between the recruit and the 2nd Platoon Commander.
The Commander turned his attention to Kang Jin-Ho and shouted in a sharp voice, “You, recruit! What did you do?!”
Before Kang Jin-Ho could reply, he noticed someone hurriedly running over from some distance away.
“Over here, Doctor! Sir!” The medic urgently cried out.
The base's doctor quickly ran up to the recruit and began examining the patient.
Then, he turned his head to the medic and asked, “What's going on here? I thought he was about to die?”
“Sir, his condition improved a few seconds ago.”
“Recruit No.97, is it? Hmm…” The doctor checked for the recruit's number from the ballistic helmet, then flipped open a medical chart he had brought along with him.
Almost immediately, his expression crumpled in suspicion.
“A recruit with signs of mild asthma, huh? But…
This level of training shouldn't have triggered an asthma attack? Hmm?” The doctor stopped muttering when he noticed the state of the gas chamber's doorway.
“What's the matter with the door?”
“W-Well, that's…” The medic sheepishly glanced at the other assistant instructors, silently asking for help.
Unfortunately for him, no one volunteered to answer.
The doctor's brows shot up, and he glared in the 2nd Platoon Commander's direction.
“How long have you locked up this recruit in there?!”
It wasn't that long.”
“I'm asking you, how long?!”
“Come on, Doc.
No one would bother to check the time during the training.”
The doctor shifted his attention away from the uncooperative 2nd Platoon Commander and began grilling the assistant instructors.
“Hey! Did you follow the regulations? Was everything by the book?!”
The doctor began nodding in acceptance when the instructors all stood around hesitating instead of giving a direct answer.
Whether the recruits were at fault or it was the instructors, we'll get to the bottom of it sooner or later.
We'll play the blame game later, that's all.
I've already called an ambulance, and I'll be taking this recruit to the Capital Hospital for a thorough examination.”
“C-Capital Hospital, you say?!”
“Of course! This recruit collapsed from an adverse asthma reaction, so I must ensure that he doesn't suffer from aftereffects! Get him ready immediately!”
The 2nd Platoon Commander began dripping cold sweat at the surgeon's shrill yell.
He was responsible for breaking the army's regulations just now.
Even if the recruit turned out to be fine later, the higher-ups would still want an answer for his sudden convulsion.
That would undoubtedly become a huge problem for the 2nd Platoon Commander.
He stuttered out a question, “D-Does he really need to go to the hospital?”
“You think this is a joke?!” The doctor shot up to his feet and began biting the 2nd Platoon Commander's head off.
“A recruit almost died under your supervision! If this matter isn't investigated thoroughly, the brass will accuse me of sending a kid with a health problem into a damn gas chamber! Why should I take the blame for this?! Enough, I don't want to hear any more from you.
When the ambulance arrives, load this recruit up.”
“N-no, wait a minute…”
Kang Jin-Ho stopped observing the recruit and got up to leave the scene without saying anything.
One of the assistant instructors called out to him.
“R-Recruit, where are you going?”
“I'm going back, of course.”
Kang Jin-Ho directed a weird gaze at the assistant instructor before pointing to where the other recruits were meandering about.
“To my original spot, sir.”
Indeed, where could a recruit go other than where he was supposed to be? Strictly speaking, it would be even weirder to have a recruit hanging around here now, wouldn't it?
For now, go and join the rest of the recruits.”
After getting his permission, Kang Jin-Ho briefly saluted and unhurriedly walked up to the waiting crowd of recruits.
The doctor tilted his head.
“And who was that?”
The medic whispered quietly into the doctor’s ear, “Sir.
He seems to be the one who carried the recruit outside the chamber while ignoring the instructors’ orders.”
“What? Are you saying he even broke the door, too?”
“You insane motherf*ckers! You're supposed to take someone having a medical crisis outside the chamber! That's the least you could've done, yet you were actively trying to prevent a recruit from saving a life?! Have you all lost your goddamn minds or something?!” The doctor glared at the instructors around him while shouting in pure rage.
“You dense motherf*ckers! I'll be making my report to the Battalion Commander and show you what the depths of fiery hell look like, so you better prepare yourselves!”
The 2nd Platoon Commander could only squeeze his eyes shut at the doctor's enraged yelling.
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