Lightning was silent and looked frozen as Hudson explained to him what had happened after the crash ad what Mitch was about to do, he wasn't going to lie anymore to Lightning, not matter what had happened when the kid found out who he really was.
"So that explains why there isn't a doctor coming in to check up on me" Lightning said trying to lighten the mood.
Hudson's smile twitched upwards, count on Lightning to try and lighten any mood up "yes, and I wouldn't take no for an answer"
"Sounds like you when you were in your prime" Lightning rolled his eyes then they became sober when he realized something "what happened to Mitch, he dreaded the answer.
Hudson resisted the urge to sigh "Mitch is being held at the California Prison until they could question you, they can't arrest him without solid proof"
"And they want me to make a statement?"
"Obviously they are referring to what you can remember, but they are going to need to know if he tried anything before, that way he has a higher chance of going to jail"
Lightning sighed as he let his head move back onto the pillow, Hudson just watched him feeling slightly worried about him, he only knew about what McQueen had told him before but did he really dare to ask Lightning what had happened before?
Lightning was still staring at the ceiling as he thought about what he was going to do about the statement, on one hand he could just talk about what had happened, but on the other hand he desperately wanted the man locked away somewhere so he wouldn't have to panic and always look behind his shoulder as if Mitch was there.
"I'll do it" Lightning said softly "as soon as you think it's wise for me to see them"
Hudson wasn't surprised at that, from what he had see when he had been around the kid was that he was a fighter, just like he had bee before they turned him away "I'll let them know, do you want anything?" he asked before he left.
"A light snack please" Lightning said lightly.
Hudson heard it "be back soon" he opened the door and saw Larry there "Larry what are you doing here?"
Larry looked at him as if he was silly "I hoped to see Lightning since you asked everyone to leave the room"
Hudson honestly forgot about that "alright but no more than two people can enter, I don't want him overcrowded" he leaned closer so he could whisper the next bit "just to be on the safe side"
Larry knew what he was talking about and immediately agreed, he and Strip were the first ones who wanted to go in, Strip more than ever and he almost forgot that his old manager would like to talk to Lightning later, he would need to tell Lightning that as well.
"Hey bud" Larry said as if nothing was wrong, although his tone was less enthusiastic than it usually was.
Lightning lifted his hand from the bed as if to say 'hi' before putting it down again, he still felt tired and it was driving him crazy sitting around doing nothing.
"Hey there Mr Lightning" said Strip.
Lightning was slightly shocked to see Strip here, what was the former racer doing here "just Lightning is fine sir"
"As long as you call me Strip then" Strip replied with a smile.
Lightning's mouth twitched into a half smile before nodding back "what are you doing here anyway?"
Strip sobered up pretty quickly "I wanted to check on you after what you had done, and to thank you for saving me from a that crash"
Lightning looked away not sure what to feel.
"I also wanted to know what was going through your mind to make you do a stunt like that" Strip almost exclaimed loudly "I understand that you wanted to help me but why put yourself through that wreck for a racer that was planning on retirement"
Lightning looked at him with a serious expression "because you don't deserve to retire as a car that ended up like the Fabulous Hudson Hornet, try and remember my speech and compare it to what I did for you, you don't deserve it and the Hudson Hornet didn't deserve that either, if I could go back in time I would have done the same thing for him, both of you are like role models to me, Hudson Hornet more so but you get the idea, no body deserves to leave and be treated like a pile of scrap all because a jealous racer couldn't get what he wanted" he was still angry and upset with what had happened that he had no idea what he was saying.
Neither of them knew that Hudson had heard everything from the other side of the door, then shared it to his car.
Strip though didn't know what to say, he was in too much of a shock to do anything but sit there with a bewilderment expression, he clearly misjudged Lightning and McQueen when he had first met them, when he had seen them for the first time he thought he was one of those stuck up, snobby racers who thought they were better than everyone, but after the speech he had made when he had disappeared made him re think everything, and now that Lightning had actually defended him from being a disgrace to racing world...just wow.
"I don't know what to say" he said softly as he looked at the floor.
Larry just looked at the two like they had just had a mental conversation and just decided to speak out loud "I'll just leave you two to talk" he quickly left. Although neither of them heard him.
"Oh that reminds me" Strip almost jumped from his seat as he said that "you remember Humpy and Tex from Dinoco?" Lightning nodded "well they would like to have a word with you soon and that they will meet you and your car in two days"
This peeked Lightning's interest, what would the manager of Dinico want with him, or was it to thank him for saving Strip and 'The King' from the accident. Then he felt cold, what if he was thrown out of his job because he saved someone? He knew his manager would get rid of him since he would assume that everyone would hate Lightning after the little stunt, but the Rust-eze, they would not get rid of him, he was helping them get others to appreciate rusty cars, if he left everyone would pass by as if they were ghosts...plus Mator was a rusty tow car/truck, even if they did get rid of him Mator would know what to do, he could be really helpful when he wanted to be.
Soon everyone came to meet with Lightning and talking to him as if he had not just been in an accident, although they would occasionally look at Lightning's head, Lightning pretended not to notice as he thought that they were looking at the scar on his right eye. Hudson had told Lightning that, had he only have had the first crash (when he first came to Radiator Springs) the line on his eye would have healed up, but now he would be stuck with it for the rest of his life, Lightning didn't care though, the only thing that mattered was that he was alive and that he could still see before the accident, even though they may never heal up properly, his left eye would be stuck as a grey-ish blue while his right eye was still the sky blue colour he had been born with, he and McQueen agreed that it was better than no sight at all. Hudson and Doc silently agreed with them.
Two days later Humpy, true to his word had come to meet Lightning, who was having one final check up from Hudson, if he had a full clean bill of health then he would be able to leave tomorrow, just to be on the safe side.
Tex, aside from Hudson was the only one in the room since Hudson had forced the others to get something to eat.
Lightning slightly flinched when Hudson touched a sensitive part on his head "hello sir, how have you been?"
"I've been doing okay, although I am slightly shaken from that crash of yours" he flinched as the words escaped his mouth.
Lightning felt like cocking his head to the side but the fingers on his head kept him in place "don't think you insulted me Mr Wheeler, I would have done it for any racer, no one deserves that kind of treatment" his eyes flickered to Hudson, the man in question never noticed and even if he did, his actions didn't show it.
Humpy had noticed the eye flicker and knew what he was talking about, even he wished he could go back in time and stop the incident that had happened to the Hudson Hornet and racer, but what was done was done and you can't change that.
"As I was about to say, since Strip Weathers and his car are retiring we are in need of another mascot, we were wondering if you would like to be the new mascot of Dinico" he asked politely.
Lightning flinched forward causing Hudson to remove his hands, both looked at the man in shock, although Hudson didn't show it but if you looked closely his eyes were slightly wider.
"But I didn't win" Lightning replied after a while "and didn't Chick Hicks get second place?"
"Oh he did but since he almost killed you everyone agreed that he deserved to last place or kicked out of racing, they voted for third place, second son there is more to racing than just winning, you proved that when you took The Kings place"
Lightning silently agreed, but he wasn't sure what to say, and he wanted to speak to the man privetly but he didn't think Hudson would agree to it after the recent incident.
Hudson looked between the two, he may not know much about this Wheeler guy, but it was clear that he had some respect and if he was Strip's old manager, then he was willing to leave them.
He leaned in slightly to Lightning's ear but not enough to invade his personal space, he spoke lowly that only the kid could hear "I'll be outside, if you want me, yell" it had also been clear that Lightning wanted to speak alone with the man and he was willing to respect Lightning's wishes, but that didn't mean he was going to be out of hearing range should anything go wrong.
Lightning silently thanked Hudson for leaving, he watched as the old racer leave the room before returning his attention to Humpy, the man with brown high lights waited patiently for Lightning to start.
"While I am happy with the offer sir, I think I might stay with the Rust-eze" Lightning started off "but there is something I would like to ask"
Tex nodded for him to continue, something told him he would be here for a while.