35 Traitor or savior?
"I regret the loss of your comrades." And that was really the case for Lazar... In a way. If, like them, all the military units in Boston had already lost half of their soldiers in such a short time, then what he had planned was in jeopardy. Either way, he didn't bother to pretend he particularly regretted Slawn's death to gain the sympathy of the soldiers, his hypocrisy had a limit.
Speaking of soldiers, a few of those who were in the street gradually came to surround them and listen at what was saying the small group of Lazar, Amandla and the Major, 'It looks like he's not unanimous as a leader.' Thought Lazar quite surprised by the behavior of the soldiers as well as the Major's inaction.
Command of what was left of the unit was automatically given to the Major as Slawn's second, by coming to listen to his personal conversations without being invited, something they wouldn't have done in the first place before he became leader of the unit, his men showed him the extent of the respect they still had for him, namely, not much.
The soldiers didn't bother to greet him, beyond ignoring him, they seemed to despise him. A completely contradictory behavior compared to the one they had with the woman who had attacked one of their camarade as well as their deceased Colonel and the man who had threatened to kill them if they approached his house not even a day ago.
They had no problem smiling and waving at them, so Amandla and Lazar immediately realized that the Major must have screwed up something. The atmosphere was growing heavy, at least for the Major who was still trying to put on a good face despite the obvious fact that he was no longer in control of his unit, because if the twenty men around them were an exception he would dare to reframe them.
Amandla nudged Lazar lightly, for her it was more in their interest to come to the Major's aid than to let him fend for himself as Lazar seemed to want to. She could take the initiative to do it herself but after what had happened with the Alpha she was going to give only her opinion from now on when a decision will have to be made and that until she leaves Boston with Lazar.
"I hurt my knees in a fight, could we continue this conversation at my place so I can sit down?" Having the Major on his side was essential for the following of Lazar's plan, he intended to help him anyway but not yet until Amandla suggests him to do it now. He didn't want to do it too fast before just to see how the Major was going to react, to see what kind of person he was.
"Yes, lead the way." The Major accepted the help given to him and the soldiers didn't object to their leaving. At the mere mention of Lazar being hurt those of them standing in their way stepped aside.
Lazar followed by the Major then Amandla came out of the encirclement one behind the other. After walking some distance Amandla thought it was important for them to know that no one could listen to them at that distance anymore, "We can talk freely."
"What is your name?" Amandla thought it was surprisingly courteous for something Lazar was saying to a stranger, for one time she could even say that he was normal.
"…" The Major was still thinking about the fact that he didn't understand how Amandla could claim that they could speak freely and didn't pay attention to what Lazar had told her.
"What is your name?" Repeated Lazar annoyed.
"Sorry Logan, my name is Sullyvan Dawson." Addressing Lazar by his first name was a little too familiar for him, even if it was his false first name, but at least Sullyvan had understood that he didn't want them to mention their ranks everytime they speak to each other.
"Okay, Sullyvan, why are your soldiers looking at you like you are the cause of this failure?" Lazar didn't intend to waste his time in unnecessary words and by asking him this question he showed him that he expected precise answers.
'Diplomacy isn't always his thing. I'll have to get used to it... ' Amandla suspected Lazar was going to get to the heart of the matter very quickly, but she thought he was at least going to ask other questions than 'What's your name?' before.
Surprisingly, Sullyvan didn't take offense at hearing what Lazar had said, he had already justified what he had done to his superiors one time and that was way more stressful than now, "Our losses are due in large part to the bad decisions Slawn made, he didn't do anything you had advised him out of pride. If some of my men are mad at me and challenge my authority, it's because I killed him in front of them."
In Lazar's plan, Slawn's death was the most favorable scenario for the future, especially if it had been caused by the Major. Amandla couldn't help but look at Lazar in awe, so far everything he had planned had succeeded or was even above his expectations.
When they got to his front door, Lazar threatened everyone not to let them in if they didn't take their shoes off first. Sullyvan then had the opportunity to see the inventory system when Amandla used it to store her sneakers.
"What is it?!", "How does it work?", "Is that one of your abilities?" He kept asking questions as Amandla ignored him. Lazar had to interrupt him for him to stop harassing her about the inventory.
"Come in the kitchen to talk, it won't last long." Lazar didn't want Sullyvan to see too much of his privacy, and the kitchen was the most secluded room downstairs.
He handed Amandla and Sullivan a seat and, out of habit, he remained standing.
"So the knees story was really a bluff?" Even if it means passing for an idiot, Sullyvan preferred to ask the question.
"Absolutely, though, we haven't stopped running, so Logan you better sit down to recover." Amandla didn't gave Lazar the time to answer.
The game was long over, but she kept pissing him off with it, continuing to pretend she didn't see that his knees hurt, 'At least she didn't forget to call me 'Logan', she has a good brain to compensate everything else.'
Lazar remained standing, pretending he hadn't heard Amandla, he didn't have much to ask Sullyvan anyway, "Can you explain me how you can still be free and in charge of the unit while you are behind Slawn's death? The army that I know doesn't like traitors."
The mention of the word 'traitor' to define him irritated Sullyvan, it was to drastically increase the chances of victory of the Army that he had done this, "You are in no position to tell me that! You knew very well that Slawn would never accept what you proposed in the message you asked me to transmit this morning. By asking me to read it as well you implicitly asked me to choose between your plan and Slawn's life."
Sullyvan was well aware that Lazar was using him and yet he had done what he wanted, it was one of Lazar's strengths. When he had to manipulate someone, he did it in such a way that this person would also see an interest in it so that she would do what he want even if she noticed the manipulation.
"Yes, it does, but as you said, it was implied. The choice to kill him was yours, not mine. I take my share of responsibilities, do the same." Replied Lazar.
By allying with Walker and this women Sullyvan knew he was dealing with people out of the ordinary and he intended to show them that he was too, "After I pierced Slawn's heart with my sword, some soldiers wanted to kill me right away, others wanted to tie me to a pole and abandon me because they didn't had the balls to kill me and others wanted to bring me back here to take me prisoner until our hierarchy decides my fate. There was only a third of the rest of my men to back me up while Slawn had sent half of us to our deaths and was planning on continuing. To stay alive and keep my position I had to plead my case." You could tell by the contraction of his face that he resented a lot the people who didn't understood his gesture.
"And what did you tell them?" Asked Amandla.
"The whole truth, everything Logan's message said."
Lazar almost hit Sullyvan out of reflex, too many people are knowing now! He held back when he saw Sullyvan was smiling like they had something to celebrate, "Why are you smiling like a fool?" Lazar said barely managing to hide his frustration.
"My men were immediately thrilled when they read your message but they added a condition to reinstate me. They wanted your proposition to be approved by our hierarchy." Sullyvan's smile widened.
The Army won't mind a battle plan coming from a soldier like Lazar unless they're desperate enough, "Explain me."
"Two hours after the request I sent to HQ I received a positive answer saying that the Major General Buren would like to meet you."