I've logged close to sixteen thousand miles in less than a week and I feel like I'm still moving. It was interesting for sure and I'd be happy not to see the inside of a plane any time soon. Especially commercial flights with their plastic cups and ability to run out of sandwiches before they get past the end of the tenth row. And watching some of the boys fold up like big bearded accordions to fit into the seats was almost painful. They asked me to imagine how they felt.
So yeah, maybe we'll push a little harder next time and get the jet instead.
Except that none of that matters now, because Ben came home with us. And he doesn't have to go back out. A little squeezing and he was let out of the remainder of his contract under some impracticality clause that if a job begins to threaten his sobriety then he is not obligated to continue.
Batman looked after that one, actually.
(Ben is fat again too. I don't know what he eats when he goes out of my sight but he said everything with a straight face.)
He hugged us both so hard when we saw him collectively we have multiple internal injuries and external emotions that can't be stuffed back in. We hugged him back so hard it was readily apparent that we've been holding our breath collectively for the better part of eleven long weeks and I was done doing that the minute I saw him.
You're not going back. I pleaded with him like a child. It was humiliating and yet I was still giving orders because I'm stubborn. Because I need him.
He smiled but I could see he was losing it too. I'm not, Bumblebee. I'm coming home with you and Lochlan.