Kidnapping Casey Page 35

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She was uncomfortable since most of the male Zorn were living in the corridors and sleeping on floors outside the door. When some of them looked at her, she didn't like the interest she saw there. Argernon wasn't able to protect her so she just stayed at his side as much as she could.

They finally reached Zorn and the crippled ship was boarded by other Zorn. They instantly headed for Argernon with a mobile board like a cot with straps. Casey stood back while they loaded Argernon gently. She followed them. When one of the men had tried to stop her, she'd glared up at him.

"I go where he goes. Get the hell out of my way and let me follow him."

Argernon's brother had stepped out of a room at that moment. He growled at the man, glanced at Casey and nodded. The big man moved out of the way so Casey could rush after the men taking Argernon away. As they boarded a small shuttle Casey felt terror. She was going to Zorn but Argernon was gravely injured. She was facing stepping on an alien planet without his protection. Was that even safe? She didn't know. She moved closer to his cot, gripping his limp hand.

 

Chapter Nine

Casey stared at the red planet around her in wonder and shock. She was exhausted and worse, worried. She'd just spend three hellish days of her life in a crippled ship with a lot of Zorn men, an unconscious Argernon, with no way to communicate except by asking questions that had a yes or a no answer.

The shuttle ride down to the planet had been bumpy and crowded with the injured. After they landed on the surface more Zorn rushed inside the cramped space to carry out the injured, going for Argernon first. Casey tried to follow the men taking him away, but one of them moved in her path, trying to prevent her from staying by his side.

"Get out of my way, damn it. I'm with him."

The man had frowned, but he'd moved out of her way after sniffing at her.

She'd run after the stretcher that carried Argernon. They walked into some kind of hospital but not one like she'd ever seen before since it resembled an office building. They'd let her stay with Argernon but no one had talked to her. They'd put him on a table bed in a large, private room, under a machine that hovered over him scanning back and forth over his body. She paced, watching Argernon, feeling worried. He hadn't woken up in three days.

She'd taken care of him by forcing water into him by dripping it into his mouth hour after hour. She'd hand bathed him with his brother's help twice. She didn't see any infection in his cuts and his bleeding had totally stopped. He'd actually started to heal. The gash on his head was closed so it was just a red-scabbed area. The bump though had worried her. It had just started to go down. The doors to the room opened to admit a Zorn woman.

Casey was taken aback by her. The woman was probably five feet ten, muscular and wore a tunic top with loose pants. She stopped to stare at Casey for a moment before walking all the way into the room. She cleared her throat.

"Hello, Earth woman. I am Scientist and Healer Ahhu."

Casey almost hit her knees and would have if she hadn't locked them together. "You speak English. Thank God!"

"I don't speak it." The woman touched her ear. "I have the upgraded translator implant programming to understand your Earth language. We also have the conis running so you can understand me in this room. I will get you fit with implants soon. What is your name?"

"Casey Santhrom. How is Argernon? He hasn't woken up in three days."

The woman darted her eyes to Argernon, clearing her throat. "He's very ill. He hit his head hard but he will recover."

"Why isn't he awake?"

The woman moved closer, studying Casey. She sniffed and made a face. "You smell."

Anger simmered up instantly in Casey. "I've been stuck in a crippled ship in tight quarters with a bunch of men for three days without a shower. What is wrong with Argernon, damn it?"

The Zorn woman growled. "There is not a need for rudeness. I was merely stating an observation. Would you like to bathe? I will see to it that you get clothing while we take care of ArgisArgernon. He should be awake by the time that you are clean and smelling well again."

"Lady," Casey warned. "I'm about to lose my temper and then you'll know rudeness. Tell me what's wrong with Argernon, damn it."

Ahhu stepped back, frowning. "He injured his head enough to put his body in a protective hibernation."

Shock tore through Casey. "Hibernation? Like bears?"

The woman frowned. "What is a bear?"

"Forget it. How do we wake him up?"

Casey moved to Argernon to grip his hand. Between her worry for Argernon's health, the constant concern on the ship that she was being lied to and they were slowly going to suffocate, and the fear of what would greet her on Zorn, she was an emotional mess.

"You need to bathe. Your smell is offensive. We will bathe ArgisArgernon."

The door opened. Three pretty women who were all tall and muscular too rushed into the room. They all quickly advanced to Argernon. One of them actually knocked Casey out of the way. Casey ended up stumbling back about four feet. The distress on the women's faces was evident as they ran their hands over Argernon's still body. One of them turned her attention on Ahhu.

"Will he recover?"

Ahhu nodded. "Yes, Bara. He had swelling in his brain but it has left no permanent damage. He shut down for more than a day so his body responded in kind to protect him. He's hibernating."

The woman swayed, tears filling her eyes. "We'll wake him up after we bathe him clean so he isn't upset by his odor."

The woman sniffed. Her face crinkled into a bunch of wrinkles as she leaned down to inhale slowly. She lifted her head, her attention going to Casey, looking really pissed off as she glared right at her.

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