And I watered it in fears,
Night and morning with my tears:
And I sunned it with smiles,
And with soft deceitful wiles.
Two days and nights followed that first nightmare of the black waters rushing up to meet him; Will had struggled with sleep afterward, and found himself unable to close his eyes for long, however much he thought he wanted to let fate take its course. The hilly terrain close to West Virginia had given way to emptier plains, and finally he was among the golden grasses and near-harvest cornfields that characterized southern Indiana, cruising along the I-70 with the darkness simmering somewhere low in his gut. He could not eat anything, even if he was hungry, which he wasn't; the nausea would only slow him down.
Before dawn today, Will had awoken to the sharp ache of his pain medication wearing off; the renewed sensations were almost as bad as he remembered when he was gutted in the first place. His hands were trembling as he took out the plastic baggie of pill bottles and shook out the dosage for each medicine in turn, downing them with a bottle of water, and cringing as the pain seemed to worsen with each swallow, then finally began to fade away again.
He had been sitting in the driver's seat of the truck for most of the time that had passed since his departure from the house; starting the truck again, he decided the best option might be to visit a rest stop and get some exercise. But there were surveillance cameras at those places -- better to stay away. Will deliberated while the sun rose behind him, burning away at the shadowed figures that had been haunting his peripheral vision.
At some point during his deliberations, Will must have fallen asleep again; he heard the clicking of hooves behind him, and saw the Stag in the rear-view mirror, breath huffing a little cloud as it gazed upon him, darker than it ever had been against the morning light.
You can never escape, it breathed into his soul. Never.