Chapter 46 - Inside the Hospital

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Richard walked up the stairs of the abandoned hospital building, followed closely by Mike carrying Anita. A good chunk of the hospital had disappeared; what remained was the majority of the west wing. The white building was still imposing on the empty surrounding area; whatever had destroyed the chunk of the hospital had clearly wiped out everything in the vicinity. Richard entered through the broken door in front of him. He stopped as he heard movement ahead. “Someone's here,” he whispered to Mike. “Damn it. We don't have time for this.” Mike gently propped Anita against a white wall and moved in the narrow corridor ahead. “I think someone's taken over the place,” he whispered. “Yeah, well I doubt they're just going to give us resources if we ask nicely,” replied Richard. At the end of the corridor, Mike peeked around the corner. Three persons were sitting on broken chairs. They were well armed. Then his heart sank. He looked at Richard. “Damn it. These are mercenaries. One of them still has the Epsilon symbol on his jacket,” he whispered. Richard cringed. “What do we do?” he asked. Mike shook his head decisively. “We have to get rid of them. Anita needs treatment and she needs it now.” “There are three around the corner. No clue about the rest of the building,” he continued. Richard nodded. “Let's do this quietly.”

They both pulled out their knives. They didn't have much cover to sneak, so they'd have to be fast. Three steps out of cover and their targets realized something was wrong. Before they could manage to react however, Mike lunged at the first mercenary, sinking his knife into the man's throat. As the second was about to shout in alarm, Richard threw his dagger, striking the man just below the vocal cords. By the time the third man had drawn his weapon, Mike's knife was lodged in his throat, resulting in nothing but blood gushing out from his mouth. “And that's three down,” whispered Mike. The large lobby in front of them divided into two. A large corridor at the opposite end led to a hallway. A broken sign indicated the presence of four different wards in that direction. On the right side, a large stair case led up to the second floor. “I'll take the corridor,” said Richard. Mike nodded. “Upstairs I go. Find whatever you can and get back to Anita.” Mike proceeded up the stairs.

Reaching the top, a large corridor on the left had been sealed off with rubble. Guess I'm not going that way, he thought. Going the only way he could, he headed right and followed the half-broken signs. The cardiovascular ward and medical outpatients department were up ahead. Going into the ward, he noticed how the area had been rebuilt into barracks. Most of the walls had been torn down and the place had been filled with beds. He estimated twelve beds. Around nine left. Before he managed to turn around, he felt a sharp pain in the back of his head and the world turned to black before his eyes.

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