Tris is sick. Four is the doting boyfriend looking after her. Simple as that…
I step into the room. Unsure really of what I’m about to find, of what might be going on in here…
It’s dark. It’s warm. I’m not sure how to take it, I’m not really quite sure if that’s a good thing or not. I guess I’ll know soon.
I hear something in the darkness, a groan. A pained groan.
"Tris?" I call out.
Tissues litter the floor, heaps upon heaps of tissues. Then I find her, on her back, trying to do sit-ups, coughing and spluttering as she goes.
"Get back into bed!" I snap.
"Tobias, I am bored!" she groans.
I wrap my arms around her and haul her up before dumping her back into bed. She simply frowns at me, too weak to struggle.
"You need your rest." I say.
"Rest. I know."
She sighs, frowns, folds her arms.
"Do you want some soup or something?"
"Isn’t that what people eat when they’re sick? I don’t know…"
"Well it’s stiff food Tris, I’m sure you’ve had it before."
"It’s just the idea of you cooking."
"What’s so bad about the idea of me cooking?"
"You’re Tobias. You’re Four, Four the brave, Four the almost fearless… Four who cooks soup…?"
I sigh, fold my arms myself, “Do you want soup or not?”
"Okay, fine, soup it is!"
I stare at her for a moment. She stares back and then sneezes, her whole body jolting forwards. I hold in a snigger and step into the kitchen. She’s always so independent, so fearless but it’s impossible to take that front serious right now.
I place a pot on the stove and unscrew a can of soup. I sniff it. It’s tomato I think. The can is a simple silver. I empty the sludgey contents into the pot and grab a spoon, stirring it now and then.
I hear a fit of sneezes from the other room and feel a slight twinge, a want to look after her. I suppose there’s nothing wrong with that, I’ve tried desperately hard to keep her out of trouble, to get her away from Jeanine, to get her safe from everything. So, I’m going to feel such an instinct when she’s got a cold.
I step through with a pot of soup, I didn’t bother finding a bowl. I figure she can just have as much as she wishes - plus, pots are a little easier to hold. She props herself up on her pillow, her nose red and raw. I hold the pot in front of her and hand her in a spoon.
"Thanks…" she says timidly.
She smiles a little and takes a spoonful of soup, slurping it.
"How are you feeling?"
She takes another spoonful of soup and shakes her head, “Not good.”
"Like the soup?" She glares at me. I laugh and gently give her a kiss on her sweltering forehead, "You really have a fever, huh?"
I blink at her. She maintains her glare and takes another spoonful, “Just rest, for an hour… Maybe two.”
I lean in and kiss her, caring little for any infectiousness I may encounter. She kisses me back, she’s insistent, appreciative of my lips on hers.
"I’ll stay with you, okay?" I tell her.
She sighs and shuffles over on the bed. I wriggle in next to her, wrap my arms around her and pull her into me. She puts the soup down and takes a heavy gulp of air.
I slide my fingers to her cheek, down to her jaw, across her neck and through her hair.
She exhales deeply, calming, relaxing.
I crane my neck to kiss her neck. Just once. Just a gentle press of my lips to her skin. She slides her hand up my cheek and through my hair.
"Thank you." she whispers.
"You seem to have an idea that you have to take care of everything, except you. So I guess that’s where I come in." She looks up at me. Softly I kiss her forehead, "Rest." I tell her.
She rests her head on my chest. I slide my hands through her hair, holding her steady, holding her in my arms, watching over her until she drifts off to sleep.