Monday, March 28, 2011
The sliver of light that creeps across the bed wouldn't wake anyone, but Ramji knew the moment the door quietly began to move. He watches Rowan glide closer and he turns his head slowly as not to wake Laila. The Healer stops, waiting for acknowledgement. She knows as well as any that, even at their most relaxed, Riders are dangerous beings.
The weight of his eyes is a tangible thing. Even unseen, Rowan knows he is watching every step. She stops at the foot of the bed. her voice carries very softly. "How is she?"
Ramji strokes Laila's hair, gently caressing her back as she lays curled against him. "Sleeping, but fitfully. Star made her take the pain pill. I didn't force the sleeping draught on her."
He bends his head, whispering in Laila's ear. She moves, wincing a little as she lays on her back and rests her hand on her stomach. He whispers again and she smiles, eyes still closed.
Rowan inspects her hand, noting some swelling, but nothing dangerous at this point. There didn't seem to be any excessive warmth or redness. She reaches to adjust the quilt and pull it up over them, but Ramji stops her. His eyes flash to Laila, then down. The Healer fights to hide a grin.
When she leaves, Laila rolls back on her side, resting her head on his chest. Ramji listens to the kittens in their box, the cat's soft purr, and Laila's soft breathing. He smiles. It would take nothing to imagine them in a shepherd's hut far from where they were now. For the first time in his life, he wonders if he could give up what he is, and go back to what he was.