Wanting to dispel the sudden tension between us, I mused, I’ve never had sex in my bed, you know.
He closed the door quietly behind him and I slid down to bury my face in the blankets. Part of me wanted to cry out my misery and another part wanted to scream about the unfairness of it all. I didn’t want to give up everything and everyone I knew and slink away into hiding. I wanted things to go back to the way they were.Pushing back the blankets, I stood and looked around for my sneakers. I slipped them on and ran my fingers through my tangled hair, wondering where I’d lost my scrunchie last night. I twisted my hair into a loose knot until I could find a hair tie then opened the door. I needed to see Roland before I did anything else.
I knocked on the other three doors upstairs but Roland wasn’t in any of them. Voices carried up the stairs and I thought I heard his laugh. If he was well enough to be up, that was a good sign. I set my shoulders and descended the stairs.The house had cleared out considerably since last night. In the living room I found Brendan, Judith, Roland, Peter, and Francis. It wasn’t hard to figure out they were waiting for me. When I appeared, all talking stopped and everyone looked at me. Francis’s glare told me he hadn’t forgiven me for getting Roland hurt, no matter what I had done after. The others’ expressions were a little harder to read and I stopped nervously in the doorway, not sure what to say to them.Good morning, Sara. How are you feeling? Judith asked.
She jumped up and swept me into a tight hug. Thank you, she whispered thickly into my ear. Sniffling, she let me go and hurried into the kitchen. I stood there feeling even more self-conscious.Roland patted the spot next to him. Are you alright?
I think I’m supposed to ask you that. I studied his face to see for myself that he was okay. He looked a little paler than usual but other than that no signs of illness.
His smile was tired but his blue eyes twinkled. That was the secret you were going to tell us? You don’t like to do anything small do you?Hmm. Give me a sec and I’ll get up, make you coffee. Breakfast, if you like.
Sounds good. Take your time. He braced his head on the palm of his hand, his elbow bent into the pillow beneath him. Tell me about your parents. About Nick and Gemma.My breath stuttered at the sudden demand. Caleb—
You said some things that concern me, Ava. Put my mind at ease.I frowned, taken aback by the fact that he was worried about me.