“On regaining consciousness, the son of Kunti burst his bands and began to press the snakes down under the ground. A remnant fled for life, and going to their king Vasuki, represented, ’O king of snakes, a man drowned under the water, bound in chords of shrubs; probably he had drunk poison. For when he fell amongst us, he was insensible. But when we began to bite him, he regained his senses, and bursting his fetters, commenced laying at us. May it please Your Majesty to enquire who is.’
“Then Vasuki, in accordance with the prayer of the inferior Nagas, went to the place and saw Bhimasena. Of the serpents, there was one, named Aryaka. He was the grandfather of the father of Kunti. The lord of serpents saw his relative and embraced him. Then, Vasuki, learning all, was pleased with Bhima, and said to Aryaka with satisfaction, ’How are we to please him? Let him have money and gems in profusion.”
“On hearing the words of Vasuki, Aryaka said, ’O king of serpents, when Your Majesty is pleased with him, no need of wealth for him! Permit him to drink of rasakunda (nectar-vessels) and thus acquire immeasurable strength. There is the strength of a thousand elephants in each one of those vessels. Let this prince drink as much as he can.’
“The king of serpents gave his consent. And the serpents thereupon began auspicious rites. Then purifying himself carefully, Bhimasena facing the east began to drink nectar. At one breath, he quaffed off the contents of a whole vessel, and in this manner drained off eight successive jars, till he was full. At length, the serpents prepared an excellent bed for him, on which he lay down at ease.’”
(Sambhava Parva continued)
“Vaisampayana said, ’Meanwhile the Kauravas and the Pandavas, after having thus sported there, set out, without Bhima, for Hastinapura, some on horses, some on elephants, while others preferred cars and other conveyances. And on their way they said to one another, ’Perhaps, Bhima hath gone before us.’ And the wicked Duryodhana was glad at heart to miss Bhima, and entered the city with his brothers in joy.