It wouldn't have even mattered if he could walk. There was nowhere to go. The heat seemed to be growing more and more intense as each day dragged by, turning Reuben's hideout into a veritable oven. The only problem was that it was still hotter outside the oven than in.
Tomorrow. They're coming to pick me up tomorrow. All I have to do is make it to the rendezvous coordinates they send.
The heat was making him delirious and his ankle was so swollen he could barely move his foot. It didn't matter. There was no where to go. Best to put off the agony of shoving on his boots until the last possible minute.
What if they forget about me? What if the season changes make landing impossible? Or what if they interfere with the rendezvous signal? What if I'm stuck here?
Reuben tried to shake off the unsettling thoughts but found it impossible to totally reassure himself. Prolonged isolation had toyed with his mind, making him paranoid.
They're going to forget me. I'm just one cadet among thousands. Why would they care if I was alive or dead? There will be twenty more to replace me.
Best not to sleep then. It was the only way to ensure that he heard the communication signal when it came.
What if it already came? What if I miscounted the days and they've already come and gone?