“It hurts, doesn’t it?” Asher’s voice is suddenly soft, caring. “We have morphine. I can make the pain go away, as soon as you send the file.”
Don’s eyes flutter closed for a moment.
“Hey,” Asher shouts, slapping his cheek. “Don, come on. The file.”
His voice is weak now. “I’m trying.”
Asher looks at Rafferty. “Might have to bring the birds in. Got medical supplies. They can land near, lots of open space.”
“Adrenaline might wake him up.” Rafferty nods.
“Or fucking kill me. Jesus, you incompetents. Hold the phone for me,” Don orders Asher.
Asher holds it by Don’s face so he can see, and Don manages to swipe and press the screen a few times. “This is the report, in my email inbox. Forward it to yourself.”
Don hands his phone to Asher. Asher stares at the screen, and then messes about with the phone for a few minutes. “I’ve sent it. I’ll open it and check it’s the right file.”
“Looks legit.” Asher frowns. “Christ, it’s a huge file.”
“I had everything I needed to take him down.”
“Why didn’t you?” Asher shakes his head. “I mean, I get you’re both pieces of shit, but this could have made you famous. A takedown this big.”
“Money and threats, my friend. Oldest trick in the book. The carrot and the stick.” Don coughs, and a tiny bit of frothy blood appears at his lips. “He had information on me before I had the chance to come for him. You want him? You better understand that you’re dealing with a highly dangerous man. Powerful, too.”
“He made you rich and dragged you into his trafficking shit, and look where you are now.” Asher laughs.
Don coughs again. “Call for that fucking ambulance.”
Wilder’s gun is resting loosely in his right hand, which is open on the floor. He’s focused on what Brody is doing to his wound.
I glance between Wilder and Don.
Is Asher going to do it? Save Don? He won’t go down for this. He will twist his way out of it, and I’ll always be at risk. So will these men. They risked everything for me. I can’t let them do this.
I grab the gun from Wilder, who shouts as I jerk it from his hands so quickly he doesn’t have time to react. Striding across the room, I aim the gun at Don.
“Move out of the way, Ash,” I order.
“Hey, Honor. Put the gun down. You don’t have to do this,” Rafferty says.
“Maybe she does?” Asher surprises me by standing and stepping back. “Perhaps this is exactly what she needs to do. He killed her mother. Kidnapped her. Hurt her. Let her have this.” He seems to think of something. “Did he touch you, Honor? Did he hurt you...like that?”
I pinch my lips and heat floods my cheeks. “He didn’t fuck me, but he made me touch myself while he watched.”
Asher’s eyes harden to flint. “Fucking pervert.”
“You fucking promised me,” Don gasps. “Call an ambulance.” His gaze narrows on Asher.
“You know what? I don’t think I will. I mean, truthfully, I wasn’t going to. Iwasgoing to let you bleed out, though. It seems your stepdaughter has some mercy in her. This will make it quick.”
“Honor, don’t,” Wilder beseeches me. “He’s going to die anyway. You don’t have to do this.”
I look at Asher, and I can see he gets it.