(NIV1984) 2 Kings 1:5 – “When the messengers returned to the king, he asked them, ‘Why have you come back?'”
The messengers should have been gone for far longer. They were to be taking a long journey – I don’t know exactly how long, but I can imagine it taking days or weeks roundtrip. This is interesting because if he were dying, or really afraid of immediate death, wouldn’t he have asked someone who was closer? SO maybe he wasn’t as afraid as I thought? Yet Ahaziah was still asking.
So the messengers getting back this early was probably a surprise. If something went wrong, would they have all had to come back? Why didn’t the rest keep traveling and send one of the messengers back? Were they believers; is that why they obeyed Elijah?
Either way, at this point, Ahaziah probably thought there was something terribly wrong, that something horrible had happened – that this is why they were all back so soon. Or perhaps something had been revealed to them along the way?