Jirel’s Farewell, Part Seven

Continued from Part Six

Jirel watched with Michael as the hu-man cops put Greywolf and Zorba in the back of Montez’s squad car. Zorba turned and glared at him. Jirel smiled.

Michael said, “Zorba will disappear in lock-up. On Greywolf, Montez thinks he’s got a good shot of getting the DA to press the case, but unless Snyder testifies, they won’t get a conviction.”

“What do we do?”

“Go see the base psychologist, Sarah Bouliet. She’s staying at Harrah’s. Once she sees Snyder, she should grant him a mental health leave.”

“Why does he need a mental health leave?”

“Because Greywolf’s going to be back on Monday. She’ll make bail, and Snyder’s not ready to deal with her.”

“Dr. Bouliet can’t cure him.”

“No, but she can give us time.”

Jirel glanced towards his Humvee, where Snyder was waiting. “Sir, a question. What have I been doing here, trapped in this tent?”

“Learning the human experience. It’s preparation.”

Jirel nodded. Michael wouldn’t be privy to what he was being prepared for, either. “How much longer?”

“It’ll be over soon.”

“This tent perceives time so oddly. It’s only here that I’d remember that more than 2000 years ago, it was said that Christ’s return was soon.”

Michael laughed. “Think days, not years. But we have to be going.”

“Right.” Jirel returned to the humvee and got in. “Humvee 1241, proceed to destination Harrah’s Luxury Suites.”

The humvee answered in a woman’s voice, “Command recognized. Proceeding.”

Beside him, Snyder swallowed. “You know, it really wasn’t—I mean, do we really have to press charges?”

Jirel sighed. “Why wouldn’t you?”

Snyder leaned back. “Sarge, I’m still on probation.”

Jirel leaned into a left turn. “And you’re afraid an attempt on your life will end up being a violation of your probation.”

“Nobody’s going to believe me.”

“Do you want them to?”

Snyder quivered. “I’d rather die.”

“You had the chance back there, if you really preferred it.”

Snyder hung his head.

“Look, it’s okay—”

“It’s not okay! I’m scared! I’m a sol-dier, a highly trained soldier. I’m not sup-posed to be scared!”

At least he didn’t say anything about being a street tough.

“Snyder, you can’t deny what’s going on. We’ll talk to Dr. Boulet and get you the help you need.”

“No, let’s go to the police station and drop the charges.”

“You can’t. She’s a serial killer.”

Snyder’s face fell. “What?”

Jirel pulled the folder that McGraw had given him from his coat. 

Snyder read through it in silence until the Humvee said, “Destination, Harrah’s Luxury Suites, reached. Valet service is unavailable. Please park carefully.”

Jirel took the wheel. “What do you say?”

“I guess we need to go inside and see Dr. Boulet.”

Continued…Next Thursday

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