General Brighton allowed himself a moment of satisfaction, everything was proceeding as planned– it was time to begin phase two. He couldn't help but feel smug. It had been so easy. His enemies lay helpless at his feet and soon they would be ruined forever.
Even if they survived Spiral, it wouldn't matter. The Wilsons would be public enemy number one and there would be nothing any of them could do about it.
He signaled two of his men to follow him as he headed back into the cabin.
He stopped in front of Davy and smiled. "I'm afraid there's just one more thing I need from you,"he said, his tone was filled with mock civility. "I'm going to have to borrow two of your brothers.
"Haven't you done enough?"
General Brighton laughed. "I haven't even begun to pay you back Wilson." His expression grew cold as he squatted down next to Davy. "Believe me– by the time I'm finished with you, you'll wish I'd killed the whole lot of you..."
Davy's breath caught slightly as he realized it was too late, and that he should have fought.
General Brighton nodded knowingly, allowing himself to smile. "And you'll have a long time to regret it too..."
"Take the boy out first," Brighton ordered his men nodding towards Joey.
Davy sat up straight his eyes blazing. "Leave him alone."
The General laughed again. "Trust me Wilson, he'll be a lot better off than you will be– provided this one does as he's told."
Davy watched as the General kicked Derrick's feet.
"Hurt them and..."
"And what? You've lost Wilson. You surrendered on our terms– you'll live, on our terms."
"We will finish this," Davy swore as the General's men gruffly hoisted Joey to his feet.
"Oh, I'm sure we will," Brighton answered with a triumphant smile. Then he turned towards Derrick. "You understand what we want don't you?"
Derrick glowered at him, "hurt the kid and you will wish you'd killed us all."
The General laughed again. "As long as we understand each other."
"I understand alright," Derrick answered. "I understand all too well."
The General nodded, and then signaled another soldier to escort Rabbit from the cabin.
"We'll be back," Derrick promised Davy, but there was something in his eyes that told Davy that Derrick wasn't coming back.
Rabbit tensed as Joey forced himself to remain calm– now that they were in the open, he could see the blast area where Geoff had been hit. He understood, just as Rabbit did – These people were playing for keeps and Geoff was only the first casualty. There would be no dealing with these people– only surviving them.
Joey was alone now– Rabbit could feel his misery as if it were his own.
"Easy little brother," he thought to himself. He wasn't sure who he was trying to reassure, Joey or himself. It didn't really matter now. Geoff was gone and they both knew it.
Geoff deserved better. He bowed his head. At least Joey knew the score now– knew that they would have to risk themselves if any of them were to survive.
Joey surprised him by turning slightly and giving a barely perceivable nod. Rabbit tried to give him a reassuring smile, but his heart wasn't in it.
"Get in," one of the guards growled as he shoved Rabbit towards the truck.
He turned ready to fight, but Joey moved between them.
"Derrick...no!" His voice was shaky, but his message was clear– this was not the time.
Rabbit didn't have the heart to tell him that Derrick wasn't there anymore.
Davy bowed his head in despair. Brighton had planned this all out– down to shooting Tommy. The General known that he would do anything to protect his brothers.
In trying to protect them– he'd failed them.
He looked at each in turn; Boomer, then Tommy, then Kenny. They were all depending on him. He knew Derrick would take care of Joey, as for Geoff...
He tried to think about something– anything else, but it didn't help. His world was spinning out of control and the only way out meant some of them might not make it.
"Never lost a brother..." he thought to himself. Inside his mind told him that there was a first time for everything and the law of averages had finally caught up to them.
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