Ben looks at me in the candlelight but doesn't address me directly. It's like I'm not in the room but no way is Lochlan going to take his eyes off me for a second.
Let her have what she wants, Brother. Be generous. It works.
I can't. Loch is stoic and anguished. He'd like to be as confident as Ben but most of the time Ben finds his courage in a barrel, bottled after twelve or twenty years.
He can't have her the way he wants and so all this does is function as a transaction. She keeps her predictable routine, he goes away for a little while. You don't want him leaning on her or you, for that matter, if she puts him off indefinitely.
I don't want him touching her.
Don't think about it like that. Think about her coming back to you.
Hey. I almost shout it from my place beside the window and they both stop and look at me. If you don't want me to go, we won't go. If it's not a good time or you think I can get around it some other way then I will. I don't want you to be so unhappy, Loch.
Since when do you listen to me.
I'm trying to be...um..useful. Proper. Righted. Less insane.
You're not insane, Baby-
I know exactly what I am. And you still want me anyway. You think I'm going to risk that now?
Five in the morning and I crawl into bed with the Devil. He left lights on and glasses out. He really thought I would cave in and come to him but I didn't. Not the way he wanted me to, anyway. He wakes up slowly. I watch his eyelashes flutter and his head lift in confusion, arms coming down around me. The horns are hidden, the goatee gone, and all he is now is a man in pajama pants and tangled sheets. A restless sleeper. A devil with his stinger removed.
He clutches me tightly against his chest.
I'm going to miss you, Diabhal, I whisper but I don't think he's still awake to listen.