Friday, February 9, 2018

Page 1525

“Good,” said Germal. “That’s very good.” He kept one hand on her forehead, as if checking her temperature, and with his other hand, he dug into his travel bag and produced a syringe with a detached and still-wrapped hyopdermic needle.

Jercash cocked an eyebrow. “What are you giving her?”

“Nothing yet,” said Germal. “This is only a precaution. Go on, cedo. Tell us what you remember.”

“It was the Flying Man,” she said, sounding surprisingly calm. Almost eerily so. “He killed all the grownups. Boom. Flash. I heard their screams. Boom. Flash. It was so loud. It hurt my ears. Boom. Flash. He killed mommy and daddy. Boom. Flash. Then the others showed up. The Flying Man’s friends. The Smiling Man. The Green Man. They argued. The Green Man saw me. He tried to get me. He said he wanted to eat me. But the Flying Man stopped him. Boom. Flash. The Green Man’s arm came off.” She started shaking. “The Flying Man. The Flying Man said. He said--he said I--he told me--” Spittle began to form on her lips, and her eyes started rolling back into her head.

“Tch!” Germal tore the wrapping off the hypodermic needle with his teeth as he dug into his bag again for one rubber glove and snapped it on. He screwed the needle onto the syringe, then tapped the side of the tube with one hand while grabbing a swab from his bag with his other. He sterilized a small area on her arm and finally plunged the needle into it, pressing down steadily with his thumb.

Jercash observed in silence. He’d seen more than his share of medical emergencies and had therefore picked up a modest degree of knowledge on the subject. He understood the procedure of what had just happened, but not why. She’d obviously just had some kind of seizure or similar neurological problem, but what in the world had caused it?

“She has a condition,” said Germal, having apparently predicated what Jercash was thinking.

“Epilepsy?” guessed Jercash, not really convinced he was right. His medical “expertise”--if it could even be called that--had more to do with gaping wounds, severed limbs, and so forth.

“Something like that,” was all Germal told him. He felt her forehead again.

Her eyes returned to normal, but only for a second before easing shut. She went limp, and Germal scooped her up before she could fall off of Koh. Germal put his ear up to her face, probably to make sure she was still breathing, and then checked her pulse.

After a few moments, Germal appeared to relax. Zenia helped him return his tools to his bag for him while he shifted the girl’s weight into a more comfortable carrying posture. Koh nuzzled up to the one-horned man, perhaps offering to carry her again, but Germal just shook his head.

Nerovoy floated closer to Jercash. ‘You don’t mind if we take her with us, do you?

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