The Lair

Free The Lair by Emily McKay

Book: The Lair by Emily McKay Read Free Book Online
Authors: Emily McKay
haven’t seen Ticks around here for a couple of months, but after you got shot, we all thought it was best to get out of the open. No point in luring them here, right?” She reached down and pulled out a flashlight. “I cleaned your arm and stitched you up while you were still out. Now that you’re awake, I need to check your pupils and ask a few questions, okay? If it seems like you don’t have a concussion, then I can give you a shot for the pain.”
    That was all the warning she gave Lily before flicking the flashlight on. Lily automatically cringed away from the light, but Dawn held open her eyelids, then moved the light from one eye to the other and back again.
    The light made her head throb even more, but it gave her something to think about besides her damn shoulder. As she breathed slowly and didn’t move, she could disconnect from the pain. Manage it. Sort of.
    “Do you remember what happened?” Dawn asked. “Do you have any confusion?”
    Lily frowned. She didn’t remember exactly what happened. Which was odd. Bits of the food raid came back to her, but nothing solid. The question marks in her mind made her twitchy. She swallowed and found that she could talk now that her tongue had rehydrated. “I don’t know where the hell I am or what’s going on. That confused enough for you?”
    Dawn rolled her eyes. “Whatever. Your pupils are responding. I think you’ll have a nasty bump on your head, but no concussion.”
    With that, Dawn stood. She set the light on the edge of the bed, but didn’t turn it off. She moved around the tiny room as she started talking. “You’re in our bunker. My father shot you. Since you were looting our stuff, you can’t blame him.”
    Suddenly the events of the morning came rushing back to her. Holy crap.
    She tried to sit up again, this time ignoring the burst of pain in her arm. The sudden movement made her head spin and her gut churn, but she shoved aside the sensation and swung her feet over the side of the bed. She wasn’t wearing her own clothes. At least not her jacket anyway. She had on a green hoodie, which was zipped up only partially so her wounded arm hung out. She kept her left arm tucked close to her side and her head ducked because of the upper bunk. “What happened after I went down?” She clutched at Dawn’s arm. “What happened to the others? Is Jacks okay? What about Stu?” For an instant, she thought her heart might actually have stopped beating. “Carter? Is he all right?”
    Dawn gave her a reassuring smile. “Slow down. And calm down. Panic isn’t going to help you heal.”
    She forced herself to speak slowly. Not because she gave a damn about whether or not her gunshot wound healed, but to appease Dawn. “Are they okay?”
    Was he okay?
    Carter wasn’t in here being treated, which either meant he didn’t need medical attention or was past the point of needing it.
    “I don’t know everyone’s names, but the two guys you were with are both embarrassed that a man in his fifties was able to take them out without a sound. They’ll get over it. As for the guy who came to rescue you . . .”
    “Carter.”
    She shook her head, smiling ruefully. “After you fell on the stairs, he kind of lost it. It took three of my brothers to pull him off my father. And he didn’t calm down until I showed up to check you over and promised him you were okay.”
    “Oh.” Lily breathed out a sigh of relief, but her heart was still racing. She didn’t think a straight-up hit of oxygen would calm her down.
    “And he’s okay now?” she asked again.
    “Yeah.” Dawn nodded and she set the flashlight down on a small chest beside the beds. She pointed the light up toward the ceiling so it cast enough of a glow for Lily to see more of the room. “Things calmed down once I showed up. The two guys you showed up with headed back up the mountain as soon as they came to. But your guy—Carter?—was going to wait for you to get stitched up. My brother Darren

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