Author Topic: Accounting the Cost  (Read 100 times)

Chief

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Accounting the Cost
« on: March 01, 2013, 04:58:16 PM »
It wasn't right.

It wasn't fair.

But it was done.

He sat alone in a forgotten corner of a derelict, watching the snow fall through the roof, knowing that before long this place would be uninhabitable. But they'd get through. They had to. For years, all they'd had was each other, and he knew he'd trained them well. No one could have predicted how badly wrong that last mission had gone.

An eight-man team, reduced to three. Five deaths, each one as painful as the others. Five tags in his hand, each name engraved with cold anger on his heart. It didn't matter, in this moment, that two others survived. What mattered in this moment was the losses. You had to make time to grieve, or your heart would die. He had to grieve. Maeve had them now. She'd see them right.

His thumb smoothed over the cold metal in his hand, memories stirred more by the personal than the professional, by the names his skin brushed over. Names he had chosen, a lifetime ago. Names he had been proud of. Names he would never forget.

Lorcan. The eldest. A quiet sort, more intelligent than the rest. A full education, a firm grounding in computer sciences that had served them all well over the years. Above that, a wicked sense of humor, a deep sense of duty, protective and fierce as his name had declared him to be. The last to fall, holding to that protective instinct 'til the end.

Con. A polar opposite, in ways. Strong and forthright, he was always the muscle, the first into the fray. A mind slower than the others, but sharper in some areas. Brash and loud and loving, he had been the apple of his mother's eye. She would have been proud of him.

Fionn. One half of a pair who shared the same instincts and talents. An expert at long-range, no matter the weapon. The only one wed, widowed early by a stray bullet in a hostile environment. He'd never been the same after that. Odd, that the one who held the rear position should have been the first to fall.

Eamon. A magician with his hands. A man who could take a vehicle, any vehicle, and bring it to life. He'd saved all their lives on more than one occasion, building on the skills he'd learned from his father to become one of the best. He'd saved the only one he could, but lost his life to the effort.

Derry. The youngest. The best recce mind he had ever come across, counting himself lucky to have had this young man on his team. Playful and serious by turns, he'd been engaged to be married. His girl would never know what had happened to him. She couldn't. It wasn't safe.

He sighed heavily, lowering his hand to his lap, his gaze caught once again by the drifting fall of snow through the derelict roof that just barely stood over his head. This storm would be a bad one, they were saying. He just had to hope that it wouldn't be bad enough to take away the last remaining members of his team.

Rory. The other half of the pair that Eamon's loss had splintered, he could do things with demolitions most experts would kill to know. He'd saved the sniper sight from the wreckage, earning himself burns that should have put him down for good, if not for the talents of the last survivor.

Ailis. The only woman. Their little ray of sunshine. A devil in close quarters, fearless in the face of death, with the gentle hands of a healer. She should, by rights, have been as delicate as she appeared, the joy of her mother's last years, yet she had taken to this life like a natural. It was only her efforts that had kept Rory from death, and likely would keep him going until they could get medical help.

Three survivors. Three, from eight. It was better than he could have hoped, and worse than he could ever have imagined. Five men, cut down in their prime. A band of brothers in the truest sense of that word. Brothers who had left behind them a last brother, a last sister, and him. The father that had failed them.

Had he done right, molding his kin into the elite team that only the combined efforts of three other merc groups could have taken down? He didn't know, and in truth, it was too late to say. This was all they knew, and this was all he could give them. It was too late to send his last boy, his golden girl, out into the world to learn something new. They would have to pick up the pieces and begin again, build a new team, learn to trust someone else with their lives. And begin the process of grieving the kin cut down by the unexpected brilliance of planned revenge.

It wasn't right.

It wasn't fair.

But it was done.
[i:d55b98c3fd][size=9:d55b98c3fd]No one hurts my kids.[/size:d55b98c3fd][/i:d55b98c3fd]