When she's ready

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XXXV

He still feels like he’s tumbling, over and over. His stomach can’t handle it anymore. Leo feels like he’s going to vomit. “Don’t feel good,” his voice is quiet, and the words come out jerkily. He can’t see anything. He doesn’t know if he has his eyes open or not or if he’s dreaming or not. Leo feels a hand between his shoulder blades who pushes him forward.

“Go ahead, empty your stomach.” He hears someone say. Apparently, he is awake, or he can hear the voice that is his father’s in his dream. He throws up, but nothing comes out. It burns like hell. He groans.

“Here, take this.” First there is nothing, then he feels his hand being pulled up and then he feels something cold against it. “Take it, drink.”

He hasn’t got any strength in his hand and he shakes his head. “Don’t let go,” Leo says quietly. “I’ll drop it.”

“Let me help you then.” He feels the hand between his shoulder blades again and then something cold against his lips. “Drink, it’s water.”

Leo takes a few sips, then he sighs. “Why can’t I see?” he asks.

He can sense his father’s movements around him. Then he feels his father take his hand. “You’re probably temporarily blind because of your fall, the doctor already warned me about it. But I’m here, it’ll be alright, son.”

“What happened?” Leo rasps.

“You tumbled over the railing of the porch yesterday. You’ve been out since then. You didn’t fall from a very great height, but your rabies has something to do with how you’re feeling as well. There’s a risk of temporary blindness and paralysis, which explains why you have no strength in your hand. Your body has got a lot to endure now.”

“Dang it. I hate this.” Leo grumbles. “I hate being bound to bed. Without my sight I can’t do anything.”

It is quiet for a while. Leo is trying to cope with this setback and his father leaves him to it.

Leo sniffles. He smells the scent of his brother and it is getting stronger. “Chris is here.” He sniffles again. “And Nick is here too.”

“They’re getting closer, they’ll open the door in a minute.”

“How-”

“What?” Leo shrugs and looks at where the scent and the sounds from his father come from. “I guess because other senses are failing right now, the ones that still work are doing a better job now.”

Leo was right. The door opens and Chris and Nick step inside. “Hey Leo,” Nick greets him, “hey dad.”

“Hi.” Leo says quietly. “Why are you here?”

“Because my little brother is in the clinic? And his condition is profoundly serious?” Nick sounds surprised.

“Well, you didn’t have to come here just to see me. I can’t see you so yeah, what’s the point.” Leo shrugs and pushes himself back into his pillow, averting his gaze.

“Leo.” He hears Nick move closer to him.

“No,” Leo frowns. “I am so useless now.” His head starts to throb, the beeping machine that monitors his heart starts beeping faster and an alarm goes off.

“I’ll get a nurse,” he hears his father say and Leo hears him leave the room.

“Leo, try to relax. The nurse will be here in a minute.” Chris tries to calm Leo down.

“How can I relax when I feel like everything that is important in my life, everything that I’ve worked so fucking hard for, is slipping right through my fingers!” Leo roars, trying to move away from everyone. “I need to get out! I need to- I-” he breathes heavily, then he growls loudly. “I need to go!”

Leo feels Christopher’s hands that push him back into his pillow. “Leo, calm down!”

Leo feels light-headed again. His world starts to spin. “Chris,” he breathes, tears well in his eyes, “I can’t- see. I can’t.”

“Shh, easy,” Chris mutters comforting words to Leo. Still holding his hands on Leo’s shoulders. “Just relax.”

“My head, it’s pounding so hard.”

The door flings open and someone walks over to the side of his bed. He hears some movement, and he feels someone fumbling with the tube of his IV, but can’t tell what’s happening. “I can see what’s wrong here. The IV-bag with painkillers is empty and the painkiller has probably already worn off. That’s why you’re feeling unwell, sir. I’ll get you a new one immediately.” A female voice tells him.

Leo sniffles and frowns, is he dreaming again? He sniffles again. “Elly?” He turns his head to where he smells her scent. Warmth radiates from his shoulder through his whole body, tingles erupt more intense than ever. He is instantly relaxed. “Is that you, Elly?”

“I’m here, Leonard. I’m here.” Her soft voice sounds like heavenly music to his ears.

He frowns again “I’m not dreaming?” He feels another hand on his chest, with the same effect. He feels a tear fall on his cheek.

“No, you’re not dreaming, honey. I’m really here.” Now he really starts to tear up. He feels her thumbs on his cheeks wiping his tears away. “Don’t cry. Everything will be fine.”

Leo feels some fumbling on his IV, probably the nurse changing the IV-bags. “Can I- Can we talk alone, please? You know, I can’t do anything right now, so you should be safe around me.”

He feels Elianne smile. “Oh, I’m not concerned about that at all. I’m more concerned about you and your wellbeing.”

He hears the rest of his family leave the room and soon everything is quiet.

“When did you get back here?” Leo asks, relishing in her touch.

“Just now. Yesterday my nephew told me what happened to you. He was traveling down here anyway to help you brother out with the pack, so I decided I would come with him. I couldn’t leave you here on your own, could I?”

“Elly, I’ve been feeling so ill lately. Apparently, I’ve been at your pack and made some mistakes. I’m sorry if I caused you some trouble.”

“It’s alright honey.”

“I’ve missed you.”

He feels Elly smile again; he notices how she moves closer. Then he feels her lips brush against his. “Hmm,” he hums contentedly. Then she pushes her lips a little harder against his, for a better kiss.

“I missed you too, Leo.” She whispers against his lips.

“God, I’m so glad you’re here.” He smiles, “can you climb on my lap? I want you close. I need you close to me.”

“Am I not hurting you if I do that?” Elly sounds hesitant.

“I’m on pain meds, I think I will survive,” he grins.

Elianne climbs on his lap carefully and sets herself sideways. Leaning with one shoulder against his chest, her head in the crook of his neck. He inhales deeply, closing his eyes enjoying her scent, her closeness, her body warmth, just about everything.

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