Ida Prayig had a bad feeling every time she walked into the Veterans Affairs office. She knew they were trying to help her. She knew that in a very logical part of her mind, but that part was too often drowned out by the rage and the fear that had come to be a part of her daily life since she'd returned home from her most recent deployment. When they asked her, in the quiet voices one uses for a child, what they could do to help her, she'd been very straightforward.
'Make me walk again.'
They would sigh each time she said it, explain again that the remaining tissue in her legs was a hindrance to any functional prosthetic use. Then the conversation would turn around again, back to the idea of further amputation. But she wanted to walk, not lose more of herself than she already had. The doctors didn't understand, they couldn't, they still had all their limbs.
The bomb had been cleverly hidden, hidden from everyone, even the dogs. She didn't blame them because she was flying ten feet through the air before she figured it out. After the bomb, everything had gone dark, and when she woke up her feet were gone. Just like that, a piece of her was missing.
Her own canine partner, Rohan, had been several feet away, saving him from the brunt of the blast. They'd retired him anyway, letting him stay by Ida's side. She wished she was home with him now instead of sitting in a waiting room filled with pitying looks and avoided glances. She wouldn't let them take any more from her, no way. Even if it meant being stuck in this wheelchair. Even if it meant...