Her Loyal Seal(2)By: Caitlyn O Leary
Clint helped her to stand, but he had to take most of her weight. He looked over at his friend Darius, and saw the same look of resignation. They could arrange for some kind of travois, but pulling it through the jungle would slow them all down. What’s more, it would be too painful on her back. Even though the medicine wasn’t meant to put her to sleep, she would likely pass out from the pain. Clint hated the idea, but he was going to have to secure her to him as he carried her.
“If we tie her upper arms and wind the rope around your waist, it should support her if she lets go.” Darius said, reading his mind.
He felt her shudder. “Are you talking about tying me up again?”
“Honey, do you think you’re strong enough to hold onto me while I carry you miles through the jungle?” He looked into her eyes and could clearly see her struggle.
“I want to say yes, but I know I’m not.” She choked back a sob. “But I can’t stand the idea of being tied down again. Of not being able to get free. I just can’t.”
Lydia would have collapsed if Clint hadn’t caught her. She let out a broken cry. He didn’t blame her. She still had to be in unimaginable pain and totally freaked out about being restrained again. He had an idea.
“I’ll give you one of my knives. You’ll be able to cut yourself loose at any time.”
“Are you out of your fucking mind?” Darius asked.
“Shut up Dare.” He glared at the other man. Clint totally understood Lydia’s need for control. He highly doubted the beating was the only thing she had endured.
“Once we get away from here, you’re going to have to check all of them out. It’s likely they have more injuries.”
“I wasn’t raped,” Lydia said baldly.
“Neither was my sister. Those fucking assholes were going to, but I made them mad. That’s why they started to whip me.”
“It doesn’t matter. What’s important was Beth. I hope you killed them slowly.”
“Not slow enough,” Darius said.
“Will you be able to hold onto me if we lift you onto my back?” Clint asked.
She hissed in pain as Darius ripped the remaining tatters of her dress off her back and used some disinfectant wipes on the wounds. More tears filled her soft brown eyes. He saw Darius pull out some antiseptic. When she tried to look backwards to see what his friend was doing to her back, he grasped her fingertips with one hand and gently turned her head to face him.
“Lydia, can you hold onto me?” he asked again.
“So you understand why we need to strap you on so that you won’t fall. Lydia, there is no way I’m going to let you fall and injure yourself even more. Not on my watch.”
“How far will we have to go?”
“This is going to take a few days.”
“Days! You can’t possibly mean to carry me for days.” She reverted to Spanish. Then she let out a moan.
“Ma’am, I’m so sorry. This next one is going to hurt bad too.” Clint looked over her shoulder and saw the regret on Darius’s face. Lydia was hunched over and she clutched Clint’s hand. Her long hair covered her face.
“Just finish it,” she said in English.
Clint looked down at her bent head and at the hands holding his, and saw the wounds on her wrists. Damn, those were going to hurt as bad if not worse than the whip marks on her back. He looked around the shack and saw that each of the other men on his team had paired up with the other family members.
“How much longer Dare?” Mason asked.
“Not much, Lieutenant.”
Clint had been responsible for intel on the operation. The Mexican drug cartel planned to make an example of Mr. Hidalgo today. They were bringing someone high up in the organization to the shack to watch an execution of him and his family. They were going to post it on-line as a warning to others.
Clint’s team was involved because Hidalgo had been working with American DEA agents, but some of them were on the cartel’s payroll. Still this wasn’t enough for the Navy to be involved, but unfortunately there was a US Congressman who was implicated in the mess. So a Senator pulled some strings to ensure Hidalgo was brought to safety.