Chapter 23: The Doctor
The silver haired man was swaying a bit but as he straightened up from his ride in the truck, he coughed and walked a little straighter, swallowing his nervousness away as Vaas stood in front of the jeep watching him. He got his bag and headed to him slowly, careful of the men as they watched him come near their leader.
"You took your fucking time, hermano." Vaas said as he got close, "The next batch was supposed to be delivered yesterday."
"I… I'm sorry." The old man said, "But you cannot rush my work, Vaas. You know that I had to do some testing before I give the merchandise to you."
Vaas scoffed as he walked with the old man towards the sick tent, "What the fuck ever, old man. Go look at my men. They've been feverish for days."
"Ahh yes, your man mentioned it to me." The old man said, pointing at his driver, "I'm afraid dengue fever is in season among the Amanaki, they probably got infected as well. I will do what I can for them."
Vaas hummed in assent as he opened the flap of the tent for the doctor, before coming inside, only to see that the doctor stood still by the door. "Oh my…" The doctor muttered, and Vaas looked at where he was looking.
Alex sat on a chair, her torso and head bent over one of his men's bed, her hair flaring down her back. She fell asleep, holding on a wet rag, her breath even as she slept. The man she was tending to looked a little better, and was sleeping better. A couple of the sick were sitting up, their fever gone, and eating porridge from a bowl by themselves. Vaas blinked in shock at his men's improvements, as the doctor looked around as well.
The man on the bed… which he recognized as Carlos, his ammunitions man, groaned out and Alex started awake, pushing herself up as he moved. She tucked a stray hair to the back of her ear and bent over the man, "How do you feel?"
Carlos blinked as he looked up at Alex, his eyes still groggy, "Are… are you an angel?"
Alex let out a small laugh, the sound of it stirring something in Vaas, "No, I'm afraid not. You're still in Vaas' camp. My name is Alex. How do you feel? Can you move?"
Carlos shook his head a little, "I feel a little weak. And my name is Carlos. What happened to me?"
Alex reached out a hand and touched his forehead gently, before smiling at him, "You've had dengue fever, I'm afraid. You've been feverish for days. But you're temperature is normal again, so I think you'll be fine." She stood up from her seat, "I'll see if I can get you some food, too."
She turned around, her gentle smile fading as she saw Vaas and the elderly man beside him. He was slightly smaller than Vaas, looking thin and frail, with dirty brown pant and shirt, and a green jacket stained white with powders. She blinked as she looked up at him. "Vaas."
Vaas scowled down at her before pointing at the man beside him, "This is Dr. Alec Earnhardt. He's the local… chemist in the area. He's got your fucking medicine. Doctor, this is Alex."
She scowled up the pirate, before smiling down and holding her hand out at the old man… Dr. Earnhardt. "It is a pleasure to meet you, Dr. Earnhardt."
The old man looked up at her, staring at her as he grasped her hand in both of his, surprising Alex. "You… look just like my Agnes…."
Alex looked up confused at Vaas, who merely scowled, before she looked back down at Alec, "Agnes…?"
"My daughter." Dr. Earnhardt said, looking sad, "She died… when she was very little… fallen from my window apartment. She looks just like you… she was a gentle soul…"
"I'm… sorry to hear that." Alex said as she drew her hand away, and the doctor looked a little forlorn as she stepped back, "But we have other matters to attend to. You might want to examine the men, Doctor."
Dr. Earnhardt shook his head a little, "Oh… of course, forgive me." He shuffled towards Carlos, who had gone back to sleep, "I am… not really a doctor. I'm a chemist, but I'll see what I can do for these men."
Alex nodded as she followed the elderly man, who took the men's vitals and temperature, while Vaas remained by the flap of the tent, smoking a cigarette. He watched Alex as her face looked worried over his men again, and he scoffed. The woman doesn't make any sense. Why would she be worried over a bunch of fucking mercenaries?
Finally, the doctor finished his rounds and headed back to Vaas, with Alex following him. "Well, I must say, I am quite surprised." The doctor said as he looked at Alex, "Their fever is gone, and they're already recovering. Give them three more days of bed rest and they would be up in no time. You did very well, Miss Alex."
Alex smiled at him, "Thank you, doctor."
Dr. Earnhardt produced a bag of pills and a bottle. He gave the bag to Alex, who looked at them. "Here… give them this. Its vitamins and iron for them. I had to… use tropical plants for them, but they should work… just as well."
She nodded, "Of course. I'm about to feed some of them, so I should probably give them these right now. Thank you, Doctor."
Dr. Earnhardt and Vaas watched as the woman ran off, shouting towards the kitchen for some more porridge. The doctor then gave the bottle to Vaas, who pocketed it. "The latest batch… but it's rather potent."
Vaas huffed as they stepped out, heading back to Dr. Earnhardt's jeep. "That woman… she is not a captive?"
"Hoyt wanted to keep her alive." Vaas answered, "If it had been me, I would've fucking sold her."
"Don't." The doctor said, earning a scowl from Vaas, "She is smart, and she is kind. She would be a good thing for your camp."
"She's too fucking merciful. She won't last out here." Vaas said, taking a drag of his cigarette again, "Those guys will fuck her if she keeps that nice fucking lady act."
Dr. Earnhardt looked at him sadly, "Are you going to let them? Are you going to let them have her, Vaas?"
Vaas turned towards the man, scowling, "If she becomes useless to me, then yes, I will let them have her. Before I shoot her in the fucking head."
The doctor blinked, "I wish you wouldn't do that."
"Yeah? Why the fuck not, hermano?"
"She is good for you." The doctor said, and Vaas blinked, "She has everything that you have been devoid of. Mercy, pity, kindness… maybe even love. Give her a chance, Vaas. You may find everything you have wanted in your life in her."
"Yeah, yeah… whatever, old fucker." The doctor went back to his jeep, and Vaas flipped him the finger, "Now get the fuck, out of here. Disappear."
The jeep backed up and left the camp, and Vaas remained standing, smoking his cigarette. He couldn't help but think about what the doctor said, but he scoffed. What could Alex possibly have that he wanted? He was a crazed druggie and a murderer. Everyone in the island feared him. Even his own men did.
But not her.
She's been doing her best to act brave, but he knew she was scared of him. But every time she looked at him, her eyes flashing blue with courage and a bit of anger, he couldn't help but feel like she really was not afraid of him. It pissed him off… greatly… but he liked her when she acted brave like that. It made her intimidating yet sexy, and he liked that about her.
He felt a grin pull on the corner of his lips when he thought about her flashing blue eyes, and he grinned to himself as he went back to check on his men.