“Sorry you’re AWOL, Captain. Seemed like the safest option.”
Sitting all the way up, Hank carefully swung his legs over the side of the bed, toes reaching out to brush the floor before he committed any weight to his feet. So far, so good. The scar twinged, but it didn’t feel like there was any serious damage left unhealed. “Hauling me out of a medic’s hands doesn’t seem safe-”
“The colonel in charge of the hospital wanted you shot.” Will waited, watching to be sure Hank had read that before writing on. “There was an officer from Intelligence arguing with him, but colonel ranks lieutenant and I didn’t think she’d get orders to countermand him in time.”
Ah. The old game of “count the stripes”. That might be reason enough to sneak quickly and quietly away. Still. “Why did he want me shot?”
“I don’t know.” Will tapped the board, underlined the words, and gave Hank a pointed look. “Cain lied about you. Did he lie about Elaine?”
Blood on her coat, bubbling from her lung- Hank flinched, and had to turn away. “Yes.”
Chalk scraped. Hank winced, but made himself face the words.
“You’re not going to like it,” Hank warned.
William stared at him a long moment. Deliberately blinked.
“Right, you already don’t like it.” Hank shook himself, trying not to remember every last detail of that horrible evening. “The night before we were supposed to make that last push, Elaine called me away from the camp to talk….”
He laid it all out, sparing nothing. William had a daughter and a swarm of orphans to look after. If every Incarnate was going to go mad – Will, of all people, needed time to prepare. For his children’s sakes.