The sound of rain greets Geralt as he wakes, a heavy grunt escapes as he sits up, another night of restless sleep taking its tole. Body sore and head pounding, he pushes through the morning routine, and waits for the medics to come drag him to another day of simple exercise exhausting him. How many weeks, months would he have to endure nightmare after nightmare, sore after sore? Lost in his thoughts, ten minutes pass, then twenty. Without realizing it, an hour had gone by from just his own self pity, and those bastard medics were late.
Impatient and in desperate need of some form of stimulus, Geralt grabs his cane and steps outside to see his squad waiting in the rain to confront him. After a brief and awkward silence, Geralt takes a step back and closes the flap to his tent, maintaining eye contact. Another brief moment of silence, and swords stab through the fabric, cutting a hole into the front of the tent. “Well then,” Geralt says, gesturing for the group to make themselves comfortable, “Seeing as I get no choice.”
Leeroy, the tent stabber, looks to Geralt and sniffles, “Sorry ’bout that, sir,” another sniffle, “But it’s damn cold.”
Lough is the last of the group to step into the now overcrowded and soaked tent, shivering hard, too cold to speak properly. “You know,” Geralt begins, “Warding off rain is an elementary grade magic trick.” A mortified look of realization crosses the group as Lough moves in to huddle with the rest for warmth. “And they call us elites… Well. I assume Lough’s filled you all in.”
Standing up to speak for the group is Leeroy again, “Aye, sir. We’re all agreed ya can’t go off on your own in your condition. Take us with ya.”
Geralt looks fondly on the group for a brief moment before replying, “I want to… But I can’t. Libernth is going to be a target because of that hobo looking bastard, the militia needs all the strength it can get. I can’t fight like this, and fell in a battle with no other casualties or injuries, as far as the top cares, I’m more than worthless, I’m a liability. Now with or without me, you all need to stay and fight, or civilians could get involved.”
A shadow hangs over the everyone, none able to raise a voice in protest. A weight finally off his shoulders, Geralt picks himself up, “Alright ya bastards, enough’s enough. Leeroy, fix my damn tent or I’ll beat you stupid. The rest of you, take me to the healers.” Finally seeing their usual commanding officer for the first time in weeks, the group excitedly stands at attention, a shivering Lough stuttering behind a step, “Aye sir!”
Shambling along with his squad, Geralt wonders to himself how long he can maintain the act of confidence, how long he could satisfy his subordinates in this state. A question for another time, perhaps, it really is damn cold.
Thanks for reading.