argyle_princess: (Sam/Hannah (safe and loved))
[personal profile] argyle_princess


It’s kind of a question of mind over matter.

Hannah’s had a lot of practice at Coping With Things, after all. Get up, run, shower, get dressed, go to breakfast, go to class, go to lunch, go to class, go to dinner, study, go to bed.

She eats very little at meals, and there is a world of difference in getting up and going to bed and in waking up and going to sleep.

Hilary hovers, fussing over her and checking on her, and while Hannah appreciates the gesture, she’d really much rather just be left alone, not have to keep up the exhausting round of responding and showing Hilary that she appreciates the gesture. Sam calls when he can, and there are long silences over the line that somehow aren’t awkward, but which do seem kind of a waste of a phone card.

She’s grateful when Halloween rolls around. Hilary’s had a date planned for over a week, going to a Halloween party. And it’s taken Hannah all day, but she thinks she’s convinced Hilary to actually go.

At least, she’s putting on a costume that involves a very short black dress, very high heels, and a lot of silver body glitter. Hannah assumes that means she’s going out, because lounging-in-the-dorm attire tends to be more what Hannah is wearing – pajama bottoms and a t-shirt.

“Are you sure you don’t mind, Han? Because it’s no trouble to call him and say—”

“Go,” says Hannah. “Have a good time. Come back and tell me all about it.”

“Okay,” says Hilary. “If you’re sure . . .”

“I’m sure.”

Hilary turns from her mirror. “Do you want me to call and check in?”

“I’ll probably try to sleep.” She glances over her roommate’s outfit. “What are you supposed to be?”

“I’m a witch,” Hilary says, setting the requisite pointed hat on her head. “See?”

“Hat makes the outfit. You’re gonna be late.”

Hilary hugs her, transferring a fair amount of silver glitter to Hannah’s pajamas. “You’ll call if you need anything, right?”

“Yes. Go.”

It’s Friday night, and it’s Halloween, and there are snatches of music and people making plans to go out, the general noise of a college dorm and Hannah sits on the edge of bed and lets it fade into background noise.

She doesn’t notice the knocking at her door right away.

She doesn’t want to answer it, but it might be . . .

“Trick or treat,” the guy at the door says, and it takes Hannah a moment to realize that the blue-grey uniform isn’t exactly a costume.

“Sam?”

“Hey,” he says, stepping into her room and closing the door behind him.

“What are you doing here? No, wait, I don’t care. No, wait I do care—you’re supposed to be in Lexington, you’re not allowed to leave, you’re gonna get in trouble, how did you get here, anyway, and—”

“Shhhhh,” Sam says, pulling her into a hug and Hannah stops talking. They stand like that for a very long time, her cheek up against the wool of his jacket, his chin on top of her head.

“I’m really glad you’re here,” Hannah says, finally.

Sam brushes her hair back from her face. “You look like hell,” he says.

“Well, I feel like hell, so that makes sense. Seriously, Sam, I am really glad to see you, but what are you doing here?”

“Even rats can get emergency furloughs. I assure you, I am here with VMI’s permission. I will not get in trouble. Dana drove me, and has going to stay with some family friends in northern Virginia, so I am at your disposal for the next thirty-six hours or so.”

“Okay,” says Hannah.

“So,” Sam continues, briskly, “you been eating or sleeping at all?”

“Not really.”

“All right. You are going to get dressed, I am going to change into civvies. We’re going out to have dinner, you’re eating all of whatever you order. And then you’re going to sleep. And when you wake up, I’ll be there.”

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Hannah Griffith

June 2009

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