Never-stopping camera shutter sounds and camera lights that popped up here and there seemingly looking like stars.
Suhyuk looked around.
There were more than 100 people seated down, looking at him. Then they all stood up in unison.
He heard a muffled applause from someone, and then everybody there clapped their hands at him.
“What’s this all about…”
When Suhyuk made a blank expression, he heard William’s voice from the side.
“Let me introduce to you, Dr. Lee.”
Suhyuk turned his head to William, who was now standing on the podium.
He was dressed in a black suit. Though his dishevelled hair was the same as always.
With a smile, William looked over at him, asking him to step up to the podium.
Suhyuk slowly walked up to William, with all the people inside now casting their eyes at him.
He could not understand the whole situation at this moment.
“William, what the heck is this…”
“They have lots of questions now.”
At that moment one reporter asked, raising his hand,
“You solved quite a big conundrum. Does this now mean that you can revive dead nerve cells by using stem cells?”
Suhyuk opened his mouth, with a puzzled look, “Yes...”
“Dr. Lee, what do you think about the costs of stem cell transplant, which must be very high?”
“Dr. Lee! Look this side!”
Reporters asked questions here and there, but Suhyuk answered each question calmly.
The question and answer session lasted about one hour.
William stood quietly next to Suhyuk.
Now he could treat his mother who had a limp caused a traffic accident.
William smiled, murmuring to himself, “Thanks, Dr. Lee. I owe it to you.”
When there were no more questions and the camera flashes diminished, Suhyuk let out a long sigh.
The next day.
Waking up from the bed, Suhyuk again found himself embarrassed.
For Prof. Han came into his room early in the morning.
Han opened a newspaper suddenly, with its front page showing a big picture of him standing at the podium.
Han said, “You’re on the TV news too.”
Suhyuk headed to the living room as if he was absent-minded.
<The stem cell research Dr. Lee announced this time was very innovative…>
Yes, it was true that he was on the TV news, and at that, on the newshour of a network that has considerable global influence.
Was he not completely awake from sleep? He rubbed his eyes with his hand.
Suhyuk threw himself on the sofa.
“You’re really a wonderful guy.”
Han shook his head after watching him.
He had heard from the start that he and William were working on stem cell every night.
And he expected that Suhyuk might come up with some astounding result.
But this was more than what he had expected.
Despite it being only his recent arrival here, he had already made himself known to the whole world.
Wearing a puzzled look, Han opened his mouth,
“Why are you making a crestfallen expression when you have done such a great job?”
Suhyuk just scratched his head, letting out sigh after sigh.
“Let’s just go.”
Nodding his head, Suhyuk stood up.
He had to report to work anyway.
The people at St. Hopkins Hospital were going crazy about Suhyuk.
Every time the medical staff passed by Suhyuk, they gave him a thumbs-up.
Though Suhyuk let William claim the credit, he could not cool down their hot attention on him.
Besides, William was seen nowhere at the hospital as he took a one-week vacation.
He said he would visit his mother.
Suhyuk’s appearance could be seen from behind, heading for the patient’s room where Milion was hospitalized with gunshot wounds.
After looking at Suhyuk’s back for a moment, Daman opened his mouth with a smile,
“Dr. Han, you have been raising a tiger cub so far.”
Han replied, with a smile, “No, I haven’t. I just ran into a little tiger lost in the mountain. I just guided him to a nearby stream that I knew of, as he seemed to be thirsty.”
Han looked over at Suhyuk now going into a patient’s room, saying to Daman,
“It is that man who quenched his thirst for himself.”
Daman nodded his head from side to side.
“By the way, I don’t see a single reporter here.”
Han was curious, too.
Given the magnitude of the event, normally a throng of reporters would come here, but that curiosity was instantly gratified by Daman.
“Phillip drove all of them away,” said Daman.
Han slowly nodded his head, thinking it was good for Suhyuk because he wanted to take care of his patients quietly without any distraction.
But Suhyuk’s identity was already being widely known to the world by various news reports, so there was nothing different even if the reporters were stopped from coming to this hospital.
Though Suhyuk’s name was on the lips of the medical staff at St. Hopkins Hospital, he just remained quiet.
“Is there anywhere you feel uncomfortable?”
At Suhyuk’s words, Milion made a smile, replying,
“Well, I don’t have any problem with walking now. Can I get discharged soon?”
Suhyuk smiled softly and said,
“As you said, your condition is very good. But I think you still need a post-surgery watch for the time being.”
Nodding head, Milion said, “I saw the news. I’m so lucky to have met such a wonderful doctor.”
With a smile he went out of the room, followed by Han.
Accompanied by the medical staff, Han explained about the diseases and their names, with Suhyuk standing in the back.
There were no emergency patients.
It was about the time that they would leave the office.
When Suhyuk talked with the medical staff at the desk of the cardiothoracic surgery department, Daman came and said,
“Dr. Lee, other hospitals request that you hold a briefing session for them. What do you think?”
A briefing session about his stem cell research.
Suhyuk rejected the request without any hesitation, saying,
“I don’t know much about it. I think William would do better than me.”
Daman was about to reply, but did not, just nodding his head lightly.
He could not force him to do it when Suhyuk did not want it.
Suhyuk and Han got on the elevator and then stepped out into the lobby together.
“It’s been a long time since we’re going home together. How about beer at home?”
Suhyuk said, with a smile, “Sounds great!”
Arriving at the apartment, they took a shower and sat in the living room.
Drinking canned beer, Han made a satisfied expression.
“On a muggy day like this, cold beer is the best,” said Han, glancing at Suhyuk.
He was making a bitter expression as he was again on the TV news.
Han took a glass of beer to his mouth.
He could understand why Suhyuk refused the request for his briefing session.
Han opened his mouth, his eyes fixed on the TV news,
“I guess you rejected their request because you just wanted to focus on the patients.”
Suhyuk nodded, with an awkward smile.
“It’s difficult to save many people’s lives with only one hand, but if you think from a different perspective, you could make a hand to treat many patients with one person’s knowledge,” said Han.
When Han said that, Suhyuk felt as if he had his head struck with a hammer.
Why did he realize that only now?
If he let others know about what he had found out, it could help them save those groaning in pain.
Suhyuk rose from the seat abruptly. Han took a glance at him.
“Are you going somewhere at this hour?”
“I think I have to call Dr. Daman.”
Suhyuk went into his room, and Han made a smile, drinking beer.
“I’m sorry to bother you, Dr. Daman.”
“No not at all. I’m still at the hospital. By the way, what’s up?”
“Well, I want to have the briefing session you mentioned a while ago.”
“Great! Let me tell the hospital staff about it then.”
After the call, Suhyuk touched his cell phone.
‘Sure, what’s the big deal about people appreciating me? I can just do what I’m supposed to do steadily. Let’s be a proud son to my parents, so they can talk about me proudly wherever they go.’
When Suhyuk made a resolution like that afresh, his cell phone buzzed.
It was a call from reporter Han Jihye.
“Hey! You’re making a bigger impact now that you’re in the United States!”
The big three TV networks in Korea were scrambling to report about Suhyuk’s research on stem cells.
“What I mean is…”
“Anyway, congrats! I’m so proud that you’re a Korean.”
Coming to work very early in the morning, Suhyuk was waiting for a car sent by the hospital that requested his briefing session.
“You’re now Korea’s signature doctor. Do it well.”
Suhyuk smiled awkwardly at Han’s encouraging words.
Soon a black sedan arrived.
Getting out of the car, a middle-aged man held out his hand to him.
“Hello, my name is Melson, working at the neurosurgery department. Thanks for your precious time.”
Then Suhyuk said goodbye to Han, “See you, sir.”
“Let’s go now,” said Melson.
He opened the door for him, and Suhyuk got in.
While Melson was driving, Suhyuk made a firm determination to tell his audience about the outcome of his research on stem cell completely, without holding anything back.
He already asked for consent from William, who gladly okayed it.
Though both of them produced the outcome, it was rather difficult for William to explain it.
For it was Suhyuk who completed the research at the end of the day.
Above all, William had his name and Suhyuk registered in the medical world with respect to the stem cell research in question.
They could both angle for the Nobel prize with due recognition.
Though of course, Suhyuk did not even dream of it.
The sedan soon arrived at the destination. It was a big hospital, widely known, but not famous enough to be compared with St. Hopkins Hospital.
“Suhyuk, let’s go in.”
Escorted by Melson, Suhyuk went in.
Even at the entrance of the lobby there were many people already that recognized him.
Some of the patients cast dubious eyes at him, but the medical staff correctly recognized who he was.
The conference room was on the 5th floor.
Suhyuk walked up to the podium, looking around.
There were many medical staff in white gowns.
Suhyuk lightly tapped the microphone before him and opened his mouth,
“Hello, my name is Lee Suhyuk.”