Chapter 19: Damaged
REILLY carried Lena out of the van to the medical center.
Mom was already there, her impatient look turning to concern when she saw Lena. She pointed to the closest bed. “Put her there.”
Reilly laid her on the bed gently, then stepped back.
Mom took a pair of scissors and immediately began cutting away Lena’s clothes.
Before long, Lena’s clothing was stripped away, except for her black bra and panties. The gashes on her stomach stood out against her tan skin. Mom pulled over an IV stand and bag, then inserted the needle into Lena’s arm.
Joseph stood a few feet away, arms folded over his chest, a hard scowl on his face. Artie paced back and forth next to the wall, a worried, maybe even guilty, look on his face. Kat and I stepped to the side of the door, staying out of the way. Ian hadn’t come yet.
Mom wiped away a spot of dried blood from a gash in Lena’s head.
Lena woke, her eyes focusing for a moment before she sucked in a sudden breath. “Where am I?” Her IV-laden arm rose, then settled back on the bed as she saw the tube, a confused look on her face. Her hand found her head, flinching as she touched the wound. “My head.” She looked over at Mom, her expression unchanged. “Who are you?”
“Don’t play games with me, child.” Mom held her in an intense gaze. “You know good and well who I am.”
“Huh?” She frowned. “Are you a nurse?”
Mom’s eyes narrowed. “What day is it?”
Lena stared through Mom for a second. “I’m not sure.”
Mom’s eyebrow rose in curiosity. “What’s your name?”
“I’m…” Lena’s eyes lost focus and her gaze fell to nothing in particular, as if she were searching her head for the answer.
“Do you remember your name?”
She shook her head, her eyebrows slanting at the corners, worried.
“How old are you?”
“I’m…” She thought about it for a brief moment. “I don’t know.”
“Do you know what year it is?”
No response from Lena.
Mom sighed. “Child, you were attacked earlier today and sustained a concussion. You were in a coma, but only for about an hour. It appears to have caused amnesia.”
Lena’s expression deepened, her head tilting to the floor.
“Some people’s memories come back quickly and some take time,” Mom said. “In rare cases, the memories are gone forever. I assume you don’t remember the attack this morning?”
“No.” Lena’s accent was thicker than normal. The concussion must have really messed her up. I’d heard of that happening—losing a few years—but Lena didn’t remember anything. She must have been so scared and confused.
Footsteps came from the hall, and Ian entered, but kept his distance, standing close to me and Kat.
“Is she okay?” he whispered.
I shook my head, then matched his volume. “She can’t remember anything. Not even her name.”
Lena was superhuman. Sturdy as could be. I couldn’t believe she’d been in a coma. Granted, it was a quick coma thanks to her accelerated healing, but a coma, nonetheless. How was that possible?
I leaned over to Kat. “I think one of the Hunters was a Watcher.”
“Why do you say that?”
“Because there were only a few Hunters there. They didn’t expect to find Artie and didn’t call for backup before going in.”
Kat grimaced. “So you think Artie used his powers to move cars again to get at parts and a Watcher just happened to be nearby with a few other Hunters?”
“That’s the only thing that makes sense,” I said. “Artie’s not looking too good.”
Lena looked past Mom to us, a puzzled look on her face. She didn’t recognize any of us.
“Just relax, child,” Mom said. “You’re in good hands. You’ll be back to normal in no time.”
I’d heard that soothing tone many times over the years as I collected cuts and scrapes of my own. The one only a mother possessed.
My stomach sank as I remembered the deal I’d made with Mom to tell her about my secret once I knew what was going on with me, but not while I was hurt. She’d freak out. The last thing I needed right now was her worrying about me.
I was fine.