Sydney considered her for a long moment. Reyna could tell then that Sydney was not a woman to be fucked with. She might be putting on a good face, but it was not her nature. It was something she could just sense about her.
“Why don’t you let us determine that? In the meantime, I would like to debrief you. Tell me everything that happened in the eight weeks of your disappearance. Nothing is too big or too small.”
Reyna gulped. This was not going to be pleasant.
* * *
“That’s it. That’s all I know. That’s everything,” Reyna ground out a few hours later.
They’d made her tell all her stories and retell all her stories and retell all her stories. As if they kept expecting her to tell them something different or to trip up and prove that she was lying in some way.
There were a few things she kept back for herself—seeing Beckham and Penelope together at the ball, meeting B, and her dreams. She knew that she should tell them about all of this—especially B. But everything was still so traumatizing…her fear so acute, she couldn’t dredge it up. Not here. Not now. Not so soon after it had all happened.
“Are you sure?” Sydney asked for what felt like the thousandth time.
“Yes. I’m sure.” Reyna glanced down at her hands and then straightened. “I actually did have one question for you though.”
“I want to help the rebellion. You have all the information that I have. You have a complete picture now. I think I could be valuable on your team.”
“No,” Sydney said at once.
“Look, I can’t sit around and do nothing. I’m really bad at being cooped up. Can’t you see where I’m coming from? I just laid it all out for you. I was kidnapped and I’m not in a great place. If I sit around and do nothing, then I will go crazy. Please, give me something to do.”
“Perhaps I could offer you a job,” Washington said with a cheery smile. “You could work in the medical wing with me.”
Reyna balked. That was the absolute last place that she wanted to work. She turned pleading eyes on Sydney. “Anything but that.”
Sydney shuffled the papers in front of her and stood. “You asked for a job and Washington is offering you one. Take it or leave it.”
“I understand. I appreciate the offer. But I am really bad with hospitals after what I went through. I don’t think that I can handle that kind of position. Don’t you think I could work with my brothers on security?”
“You are important here, Reyna. You are not important dead,” Sydney said bluntly. “You are now a member of Elle. You will have to find a place here as you did when you were miserable in those warehouses and when you were uncertain and afraid with Beckham and even as you did in Harrington’s care,” she spat out. “But you will not work on my security team. Do you understand?”
Reyna nodded solemnly.
“Good. You’re dismissed.”
It was nearly a week of doing absolutely nothing that finally did Reyna in. She hated sitting around. Had always hated it. Between Meghan’s insistence that she needed to rest and Sydney’s insistence that she couldn’t do anything she truly wanted to do, she was going stir crazy.
Not to mention the fact that she hadn’t heard from Beckham in all of that time. A full week of nothing. Was he really going to stay away? Had he really given up?
Eventually, she got so tired of resting that she threw on workout clothes and headed downstairs. She was already through her fifth mile on the treadmill when her brothers showed up and stared at her in shock. It took little convincing to get them to start training with her in their spare time. Since her cardio was already on point, they started her on weights and higher intensity workouts.
Four days later while working on self-defense training, Tye strolled into the room. “Tonight,” he said with a nod to Brian and Drew.
They straightened and nodded back. It wasn’t until he had left before they relaxed again.
“What’s that about?” she asked.
“Work detail,” Brian said.
“It’s stuff we do every day,” Drew said with a smile. “It’ll be fine.”
“Can I come with you?” she asked hopefully even though she already knew the answer.
“No,” they said as one.
“Come on. You’re training me. You could get me into the program or something. I want to be useful. Let me be useful.”
“It’s not about being useful,” Brian said. “It’s about keeping you safe.”
“I know. I totally get that. I don’t want to be kidnapped again or anything. Trust me. But I can’t sit around and do nothing. I’m going crazy.”
“I heard Meghan say that you could work in medical with her,” Drew said.
“No. I don’t want to work with blood and needles.” She shuddered. The absolute last thing she wanted to do was work in a hospital. Why did no one understand that? “I want to help. I want to make a difference. Take down the bad guys.”