Scott Tracy leant on the door to the infirmary and stared at his younger brother’s hunched back.
Virgil’s yell over the comms, the lack of response from Kayo, the desperate dive of his brother into that ice crevasse…
Virgil was running his hand through his hair, staring at his unconscious sister’s bed. Silently Scott slipped into the room and placed a hand on his shoulder, hoping it would bring some calm. The obvious dumb question.“You okay?”
His brother startled just a little, his brown eyes darting up at him. “I-“ He let a rough breath out and shook his head, looking down and away.
Scott’s lips thinned a moment before he grabbed a chair and sat down beside his best friend. “She’s going to be okay.”
“It wasn’t your fault.”
There was silence again.
“You were right.” He could barely hear Virgil’s whisper.
“You were right.”
“I’m happy that you’ve seen the light, but it would help if you could be more specific.”
“I like Kayo.”
A moment. “Oh.”
“I think I love her.”
“Okay.” A pause. “Does she know?”
“I don’t know.”
“Okay.” He reached out a hand and gripped his brother’s shoulder once again.
“I heard her fall.” Virgil licked his dry lips. “She didn’t answer. And I had to-“
“I know.” Those minutes had been pure hell. Virgil’s frantic yell, his mad scramble down the ice crevasse. They had saved three people today, the two climbers and their sister. “Brains said the belay pin was faulty.”
Virgil turned in his seat, his eyes fiery. “Faulty? I checked all the equipment myself!”
“Hey, it was a manufacturing flaw in the alloy. You couldn’t have known. He’s already sent a report to the manufacturer. We won’t be purchasing from them again.”
“She is going to be okay. She was lucky. She had you.”
“She broke both her ankles.”
“Yes. She was lucky.”
Virgil looked up at him, his eyes fragile.
Whispered. “Yes, she was.”