Sharon’s note: Most people are supportive and kind when they know you have a problem. Some people . . . well some people see a weakness and feel they need to exploit and attack it. Those same people will get angry if they see you trying to thrive and will try to cut you down. These are miserable people who need you to suffer so that they feel better. You know what? Unless they switch to physical assault, all they have is words. Words can hurt, but remember something: Words only matter if they come from someone who’s opinion matters. People who try to put you down are just sullen children. Their opinion is beneath your notice. If they try to physically stop you . . . well, that’s a whole other game that needs its own article. Warning: Author had to take her own advice recently. Really, if people suck, just ignore them.
“You idiot!” He roared over the car speakers. I winced at the volume. “You’re going to get yourself killed!”
“I’m really going to try not to, Will, but yeah, there’s a chance. There’s always a chance. It’s part of the job.”
“You’re going after a lunatic werewolf in the woods, on a full moon, alone. Of course you’re going to die.” I head something crash on the other end of the line. Will had a tendency to throw things when he got angry.
“Who’s fault is that, Will?” I said without heat.
“Yours! It’s your fault. Even when you were abled bodied you couldn’t have pulled this off.”
“Wow. It didn’t take long for you play the cripple card, did it? You don’t know what ‘this’ even is to know if it will work or not, William. I have a plan.” I mostly had a plan. If the GPS info didn’t fail me. If all the park maps were up to date. If Brian could hold out till I got there. It was a lot of ifs, but no plan was without fault.
“I’m not . . . it’s not because . . . I’d say this to anyone going out there alone. Get your ass back to Hearth.” It was petty to enjoy hearing him stumble over his words after he insulted me but I did it anyway. What got me was that he didn’t even think he was being insulting. They never did.
“Yeah, Will, I’m totally going to run home just because you yelled at me. Goodbye.” I reached up to tap the button to drop the call.
“Wait! Wait.” I could almost hear Will running his hand through his hair in frustration. It was a nervous gesture he’d had as long as I’d known him. My hand hovered near the button.
“Whayever you’re going to say, say it quick. I have to get back on the coms.”
“When you get to the park, wait in the parkinglot. I’m pulling a couple of my guys off this hunt and sending them to you.” As pained as he sounded at the idea I almost wanted to believe him.
“What about ‘the numbers’? Can you afford to take two guys off a mission?”
“With all the teams here it’s almost crowded. My guys aren’t even fighting. The wolf is contained in that abandoned shopping mall. We’re letting him run around in there so we can scoop him once the sun comes up. We have to keep a guard around the place but there are like three teams here besides mine. We aren’t going to miss two guys.”
I closed me eyes for just a second against the hope that welled in my chest. Then my eyes snapped open as I remembered I was on the road. Will could be such a bastard. “Who are you sending?”
“Oh, um, Hoffman and Cruz. Look, it may take them a few minutes to get their stuff together and get out there so if you get out there, wait.”
“You always were a terrible liar.” I chuckled but there was no humor in it. My hands started to shake as they tightened on the wheel. “What was the plan, Will? Keep me waiting in the parking lot all night while you keep promising me that help is on the way? You son of a bitch, people are dying!”
“I would never . . .”
“I know Hoffman is on medical leave, you moron!” I slammed one hand against the wheel. “I saw the papers for his transfer to Hearth in a couple of days when he gets out of the hospital. Do you think I’m stupid? You know what? I take back what I said, you don’t owe me, I owe you, because leaving me was the biggest favor you ever did me.”
I hit the button harder than necessary, and put the headset back on. I ignored the notice that Will was trying to call me again. “Hey, Brian, sorry about that. Had to deal with an ex, you know how it is. So, how is everything going? Any updates?”