Her Loyal Seal(5)By: Caitlyn O Leary
Clint let go of Lydia. “There you go. Try to keep your wrist immobile for a while, okay? We don’t want you undoing all of Darius’ hard work.”
Lydia tried to sit up and Clint helped her. She looked at her swollen and stitched up flesh and winced.
“Why doesn’t it hurt?”
“I anesthetized the area. Even with the shot I’m going to give you, when the numbness wears off, it’s going to hurt.” Darius carefully measured the amount of liquid that went into the syringe and administered it.
“Will this knock her out?”
“If I give her more it will,” Darius admitted.
“I don’t want anymore. I refuse to weigh down Clint as he has to carry me. It’s easier when I’m awake. I won’t hold still for any more shots.” The small woman in her baggy black shirt was staring down the two of them. She sounded like a hissing kitten. It would be comical except for the lines of pain on her face.
“Lydia, we’re making camp now. I can see how much pain you’re in just from your back. Let’s get you something that will help you sleep through the night, okay?”
“She giving you trouble?” Finn asked as he came over with two large tarps. Lydia looked frightened and pushed closer to Clint. Finn immediately realized his mistake and crouched down in front of her.
“I’m sorry, Ma’am. I was just teasing. I love seeing you giving Darius and Clint a little bit of what for. It’s good for them.”
She pushed away from Clint, and he missed her warmth. She sat up straight and gave Finn a brave smile.
“It’s okay. I’m just jumpy.”
“I’m here to help you set up camp. Guys, hit the high ground close to the tree, it’s definitely going to rain.”
Clint picked up Lydia, mindful of her back. Darius and Finn spread out the ground tarp over the roots of the tree so it was up high and the rain wouldn’t pool around them. Then they affixed the other tarp to the tree and some spikes in the ground so they would be covered. Lydia would be wrapped in the silver survival blanket. As far as Clint was concerned they were living large, but for a woman who had never camped in a jungle and had just been tortured, this had to be hell on Earth.
“Thank you so much,” she said as she looked at what they had devised.
Both Finn and Darius gave her odd looks. Obviously their thoughts had been mirroring his own.
“It’s the best we can do for you tonight, Ms. Hidalgo.”
“I know, and I appreciate everything you’ve done for me and my family.” Clint looked at her and saw nothing but sincerity. Amazing, fucking amazing.
“It’s our job, Ma’am,” Finn answered.
Darius and Finn got some foliage and put it down under the spot where Lydia was going to lay. Clint put her down on her side and covered her with a blanket. Each man was going to stick with one family member so if problems arose they would be able to protect them.
Drake had first watch, so he gave over his pack for Lydia to use as her pillow. Seconds after they got settled under the tarp it was as if the heavens opened up and started pouring buckets of water. The only saving grace was it was coming down straight instead of sideways.
Despite the rain it was hot and humid. He hadn’t minded carrying Lydia. Rescuing innocents was exactly the reason he signed up to be a SEAL, but he had been getting really hot. He could have gone another couple of miles, but the other Hidalgos weren’t going to make it. Mason had done the right thing to set up camp.
Even though Darius said the shot wouldn’t cause Lydia to sleep, she was dozing. He looked her over and saw where the mosquitos had gotten to her arms. Now with the rain acting as a protective barrier they shouldn’t be a problem, but he should have thought of bug repellant. The last thing she needed was more pain. Her eyes opened.
“I can feel you staring at me. Are you worried I’m going to be a liability?”
He snorted. “I was kicking my ass for not taking better care of you.”
“What are you talking about?” She shifted and he heard the palm fronds rustle beneath the tarp.
He tugged at her hand, and brushed a spot on her upper arm. “You’re getting eaten alive with bug bites.”