"You been seeing the television?" the Guard said.
Huxton squinted, through the bleariness of sleep into the bleach of daylight, he only saw the form of the Guard, an outline of a man, faceless and without detail. Slowly, he sat up feeling as if his bones were brittle to snap. "What?"
He wished he could seem more heroic than a man who has been beaten and tied and imprisoned for days. He felt horrible with a dehydrated mouth that made sticky sounds each time he parted his lips.
"You been seeing the television? They say you is dead, man. They say your plane went into the ocean and you is dead."
Huxton closed one eye so he could focus on the Guard's face.
"I don't deserve this, I only came to inspect the place, I didn't see anything wrong."
"But you is wrong. We all know whatchoo did out there," the Guard says. "Everyone knows it and we're going to make an example of you."
"So it was a trap getting me over here to inspect the colony?" Huxton says, "You just wanted a congressman to hang to ensure loyalty, is that it?"
"You is kinda smart," the Guard replies.
Huxton's hand tightens on his sharpened toothbrush.