Forty-three – 03

[This post is from Marin’s point of view.]

In those first few seconds, I scarcely dared to breathe, as if the simple act would shatter the momentary peace, the silence. And it was silent, as if everyone else was holding their breath, the same as I was, waiting, watching, expecting something other than what came.

What came was nothing.

I sucked in one breath and then another, staring at that field until Seamus moved and I snapped out of whatever fugue had temporarily gripped me. He needed help, Phelan needed help—and more besides.

I exhaled with a shudder and reached for Seamus. My next breath came with a curse and he just looked at me with a grimace and a slightly arched brow.

“What is it?”

“You look like hell already,” I said as I started to lift him. I needed to get him down off that wall and to a healer—probably Jac, but maybe J.T. I’d figure it out once we were on the ground, or maybe once we were back by the fire where there was better light. The sky was still dark with stormclouds and I suspected that it would be for a while yet.

“I got shot,” he said, still staring at me as I hauled him upright. He winced, then groaned. “What were you expecting?”

“I’m going to go with not you playing hero like that.” I blew out a quiet breath. “Phelan, are you all right?”

“Just need a minute,” he rasped. “Stay where you are, I’ll help. Just let me get my bearings again.”

I glanced at him and grimaced. His complexion was almost as ashy as his cousin’s.

Nope. This has to be me.

“Is Matt okay?”

I opened my mouth to answer Phelan’s question, only to be cut off.

“I will be,” Matt said, his voice hoarse, as if he’d been screaming—though I knew he hadn’t been, at least not out loud. Hecate curled into his chest and he peeked up to look at me for a few seconds, resting his chin against her hair. “Are you okay, sis?”

“Oh yeah,” I said with a measure of wry humor. “Peachy.”

With that, I started to drag Seamus to the edge of the wall.

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