Lein awoke not long after Perion left. Almost instinctively, he moved his hand over to the side of the bed where he thought Perion would still be lying. But his hand didn’t touch a warm body. It touched a spot of royal blue silk, nothing else. He sat up then, wondering where in the hell she was. Although he knew she was probably not in the house, he called out her name a couple of times anyway, just in case. After a moment, he sighed and ran his hand absently through his hair. Apparently while he had been sleeping, she had run away because she knew he would not have allowed her to leave if he had awakened. She had fled, too afraid to take a chance with him. So much was left unsaid and unresolved. He had also hoped that their lovemaking would have been a final end to the tension that had built up between them from the start.
Although his brain was clouded with sleep, and Perion’s departure had thrown him into deep confusion, he was sure of one thing. He would have loved to awaken with her in his bed and arms. He was pissed off at himself for allowing her to escape, and he was more than tempted to go after her. In his mind, Lein played out a grand fantasy of going to Perion’s apartment and breaking the news about their night to Blaine. He would love to see the look of shock and betrayal on Blaine’s smug face. The bastard absolutely deserved it. But he wouldn’t do that, wouldn’t hurt Perion like that for anything in the world.
Instead of acting out his grand fantasy, Lein lay back in bed and folded his hands behind his head. For hours, he stared at the ceiling. He decided he would allow her time to think about what had happened and why it had. He would definitely confront her the next day, demanding why she’d left him, especially after they’d made such mad love. After his brooding thoughts abated, Lein finally gave up on sleep. He sat up on the side of the bed, and his foot landed on an unyielding, cold object. He moved his foot and almost smiled. Instead of sinking into the thick carpeting, his foot landed on something that wasn’t supposed to be there. Lein’s eye caught a tiny sparkle of gold. Once he examined the sparkle for a moment, he identified it as Perion’s engagement ring. It rested in the carpeting as if left behind by a mystical ring fairy. It was a symbol for Lein. The ring nearly whispered in Perion’s voice: ‘come find me.’