The Best Medicine

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Carrying both girls back to town was a challenge in and of itself, I had to think fairly creatively to pull it off.

First off I dig a small hole using my hands to hide their weapons in, because I’m certainly not going to be able to carry them and I don’t want to risk a stray inhabitant of Dewhurst wandering out here and nicking them for a quick payday at the pawn shop. Just to be sure I leave a little marker on top of the hole in the form of three stones placed together so I know where I dug them.

Then after that’s been squared away, I strip Sam’s decorative belt off her hips and use it to buckle Zutiria to my back. It’s not as smooth as if she were holding onto me herself, but it’s the only way I can use both of my arms to carry Sam. At first I tried to carry them both over my shoulder with one on each side, but it didn’t work that well. Sam is so much heavier than Zutiria that it made balancing them both a nightmare, so instead I opted for this set up. Mage on my back, scary Princess in my arms bridal style.

I’m trying my best not to think about whatever the hell just happened to Sam. We can’t stay here, we need to leave. That’s all that matters right now.

About halfway to the healer Zutiria suddenly startled awake, thank the gods. It must have been a rough ride being jostled back and forth on my back. She whispers tiny waking noises and a small yawn before she makes contact.


“Hey. Can you walk?”

‘Probably not, but it certainly seems like it would help you if I tried...’

I look around and soon find a small bench outside of a suspicious looking building labeled ‘Drugs...tore and More’. Not sure what’s going on there. Whether they think it’s clever or if they think they found a legitimate loophole is beyond me. Regardless, I lay down the Princess for just a moment so I can crouch down to the ground and release Sam’s belt buckle from me and Zutiria.

She audibly groans as she slides off of my back and onto the dirty terrain beneath her feet.

‘What happened...?’ She leans over to Sam, seeing her closest friend covered in blood and bruises.

“After you passed out, a lot. Sam’s... not well.”

Zutiria asks me in a surprising manner, ‘Sammy didn’t get... overly angry and arrogant, did she...?’

“That’s an understatement. How did you know, has she done this before?” I brush a lock of the Princess’s golden hair out of her bloody face while asking Zutiria, in desperate need of clarification.

‘I was praying this would never happen...’ The mage sighs and wordlessly casts another spell, despite not having her staff. Zutiria winces from the effort but the blood on Sam disappears leaving her clean once more, except for the bruises and obvious signs of muscle damage.

I’m just glad she didn’t get any deep cuts or anything.

“So, you know what’s going on with her.” I ask to confirm.

‘You probably know too if you’ve read a history book or two.’ She gives me a concerning, cryptic expression and sighs heavily once again. ‘We should wait until she’s awake and ready to hear it, Sir. Let’s get her to the town healer, assuming you have one.’

“Yeah, we’re already about halfway there.

‘Good. Let’s not waste any more time.’

And we don’t. I sling Sam carefully over my shoulder and keep her there with my arm in place, while Zutiria clamps onto my free hand to steady herself as we walk at little better than a snail’s pace to our destination.

It takes a long while before we finally arrive. It’s a simple place by Dewhurst standards, and it looks decidedly less disgusting than a good majority of the town thanks to deliberate care and polish from its owner. A decently sized white building at odds with its shabby surroundings, ‘Helpful Heals’ is the name.

The owner is someone I’ve known since I was a child.

Opalina Hart is most likely in her early fifties by now, but like many magic users it’s affected her appearance significantly and she scarcely looks a day over thirty. I won’t lie, Opalina was my first crush. I’m sure she’s many a Dewhurstian boy’s first crush at that, so I’m hardly special in that regard.

She frequently looked after me as my eyes became worse and worse, and it was her who I ran to when Grandpa died. After that entire incident she took it on herself to look after me as much as she could, but over the years we’ve drifted apart. Mostly because of me.

I didn’t have it in me to keep seeing her after I gave up trying on the Guild. I’m embarrassed to have to go running to her now, but any sort of shame I might feel is vastly outweighed by the overwhelming need to take care of Sam.

Zutiria and I enter the building and I yell, “Ms. Hart? I have an emergency!”

Opalina is not in the humble looking lobby when we arrive, but at the sound of my voice she must have dropped whatever she was doing in her office and she bursts into the room.

She looks as beautiful as I remember, perhaps more so now that I’ve developed into a man and can appreciate her mature charm.

Ms. Hart is slightly taller than me, and has more curves than any woman I’ve ever known. Full figured doesn’t even begin to do her justice. She’s wearing her typical light blue, gold trimmed ornate coat with a dark, form fitting sweater underneath coupled with a white cravat. The sweater and coat surprisingly do nothing to hide her absolutely massive... feminine charms. Below, she wears a skirt that barely covers anything at all topped off with dark, breathtaking pantyhose stockings.

There’s a bunch of healers in Dewhurst and I could have taken Sam to any one of them, but Opalina is... well. Above the low, silver pair of glasses rest her kindly purple eyes. Eyes that warm a man’s heart just by looking at them, or at least they can warm mine. When she looks at me with that motherly gaze of hers I’m always overcome with a feeling that everything’s going to be alright.

This is to say nothing of her luscious, curled auburn locks that trails down the curves of her body as though she were an otherworldly goddess flowing with femininity.

Yes, I might be exaggerating just how beautiful Ms. Hart is... but I did say she was my first crush, did I not? A boy never forgets such things.

With one glance, she sizes up the situation and takes command. Whipping out her blue and gold wand from the inside of her sleeve, she points towards the sickroom. “Don’t say a word, sweetie. Come.”

Neither of us feel the need to argue at this and we do as we’re told. The sickroom is thankfully empty right now, which was the only thing I was relatively concerned about. Opalina doesn’t turn down any patients as long as they pay so whenever I visited it was a common sight to see recovering mana crystal addicts, potion junkies and shady, wounded gang members. Granted had I gone anywhere else it would have been much, much more prominent. Opalina treats all, but her rates and care is much more expensive than your typical street-healer.

“Lay here down here, carefully now. I don’t need to use my magic to tell the poor thing’s gone and broke most of her ribs and her right arm.”

“Yes, Ms. Hart.” 

“Sweetie, you’re a full grown man. You don’t need to call me that anymore.” She says with a certain sternness in her voice as she makes her way to Sam’s side.

“Force of habit. I don’t expect to get over it any time soon, either.” I smile weakly and avert my gaze.

Opalina sighs, “Of course not. I wouldn’t expect anything less from you. I swear, you always were such an oddly formal child...” Before she does anything to Sam she sets her sights on Zutiria. “You aren’t looking too hot yourself, little one. Would you like to take a bed and have yourself a nap?”

Zutiria shakes her head back and forth. ‘Mana Circuit Atrophy from 27 years of neglect. I’m fine. Help my friend, please.’

All business as usual, the only response this gets out of Opalina is a raised eyebrow. She doesn’t make any mention of Zutiria’s lack of speech or show any sort of surprise at the sudden glowing blue text that appeared when the little lady ‘spoke’. “Well alright then. Sweetie, go get your cute friend here some water. You remember where the kitchen is, yes? She might be able to diagnose herself but she still needs to keep hydrated.”

Zutiria doesn’t argue with this, I assume she had the rest of her canteen after the exhaustive battle with the Brood Wolves, and I know better than to even try arguing. I leave the room and shortly after return with two large glasses. One for myself and one for Zutiria. 

The Mage takes it from my hand when I offer it and takes a dainty sip while I nervously chug mine all at once, wishing it was something that went down a little harder.

With her wand at the ready, Opalina makes a little gesture and utters, “Innereveall.”

Zutiria perks up for a moment after hearing Ms. Hart’s incantation, perhaps it was a spell she doesn’t recognize?

Everything past the hilt of her tool shifts into a comically oversized glass lens with two visible buttons. Using the first setting the mature healer scans Sam's body revealing the muscles beneath her skin when viewed through the glass. I can’t stomach looking at the sight for all that long... It’s squicky enough as it is but it hurts me on a deep level seeing how torn and shredded Sam’s muscles are.

After I look away, there’s a clicking sound and I look back to see through the lens again. Now it reveals Sam’s skeleton and just as she predicted Opalina ‘tsk, tsk, tsk’s’ after sizing up all of the young Princess’s broken bones.

“How?” She turns to me.

“There was a quest. Brood Wolves, and-”

“And you sent her off without a healer in the party?” No one said Zutiria wasn’t a healer, but I guess the fact that we had to come here in the first place was enough of a context clue as if she was, Zutiria would have already patched Sam up.

“We don’t have any healers. My girls so far are just-”

“Your girls so far...?” Suddenly Ms. Hart’s expression changes to one of intense curiosity, motherly judgment and maybe a bit of panic.

...I probably shouldn’t have just said that.

There’s a frog in my throat, I can’t croak out another word.

Zutiria softly laughs and grabs my hand deliberately for Opalina to watch. 

The good doctor gives me a look so stern and frightening I can’t even maintain eye contact. She didn’t have to say a word to tell me that we were going to have a very, very long talk about this later. Thankfully for now she sighs and lets it go, returning her focus solely on Sam.

“A moment, please.” She wiggles her wand like a snake and as soon as she does it snaps back into being just a normal looking wand once more.

It doesn’t last for long, though.

She thrusts her finger out on her free hand and chants, “Suturepair.”

Once again, Zutiria tilts her head as the magic unfolds. The tip of her extended finger starts emitting a glowing blue thread of mana and her wand morphs into a small needle and thread.

She works at such an intense speed that it not only impresses, but practically scares me. Her hands somehow sink into Sam’s body, the needle along with them. I haven’t ever seen her do this procedure but I assume she’s hand stitching Sam’s torn muscles together and rebinding them with her healing thread.

After just a few minutes of surgery she sighs and looks to me once more with her typically warm eyes now cold with professionalism. “All that’s left is the bones.”

I nod my head. This part I’ve seen before, after all. What kid hasn’t broken a bone at some point in their childhood?

Zutiria watches with intense curiosity on the edge of her proverbial seat, eager to see what comes next. I don’t understand her curiosity, has she never seen standard healing magic like this?

Regardless, Opalina reaches over the table after stuffing away her wand. She doesn’t need it for this part.

“Mendinside.” After the incantation, her hands glow the comforting blue that my mind associates with healing and she starts secreting a slimy substance. Then, she phases both hands inside of Sam’s right arm and compresses around the bone. From what I remember of it this spell invades your body harmlessly and with her hands she reaches in to squeeze the bone back together.

The slime acts as a sort of glue that not only binds the broken parts but after hardening strengthens the bones, regrowing any missing parts. I think she told me something about how the slime absorbs all the stray fragments as well, but I was just a child crying in pain so... um, all I really remember is being smothered by her gigantic breasts when she comforted me with a hug after.

After squeezing Sam’s arm back together she sighs and wipes a bead of set from her brow, then reaches inside of the Princess’s ribcage and goes about her job of mending each fracture.

It doesn’t even take ten minutes.

Opalina turns away from her patient and the professionalism fades from her face. It’s replaced with the warm smile that’s always been there for me whenever I needed it.

“She’ll need to rest for a few hours, but she’ll wake up feeling better than ever. My magic isn’t battlefield recovery, after all. It’s focused on actually fixing the problem as opposed to patching you up just enough to finish the quest.” The doctor lets out a comforting, deep laughter.

Zutiria and I light up, and I have to hold back running up and hugging her like I did as a child. 

Zutiria looks like she’s about to say something but I cut her off by blurting, “Ms. Hart, thank you so much...! I can’t even-”

She interrupts me yet again and grabs me by my collar, pulling me threateningly until I’m pressed up against her gratuitous cleavage and resting just inches away from her full, round lips. Knowing what’s coming, I’m anything but aroused.

“Sweetheart.” She coos in a low, sultry voice.

“...” Silence is the best answer here.

“You’ve been avoiding me for years now, despite after everything I’ve done for you and the sacrifices I’ve made to always be by your side. Yet for the first time in ages, today you come bursting into my little clinic. When I heard your voice my poor, lonely old heart sank in my chest and I ran to help you just as I always have. So would you please... PLEASE, my darling... explain why... WHY in the Goddess’s name did you show up with the Crown Princess of Karnalle slung over your shoulder, barely hanging on in critical condition?”

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