Summary: Daryl didn't say anything. Beth said "oh." And then things get hot and heated after that.

A/N: I wrote this as a way to procrastinate since I didn't feel like reading 93 pages of culture and politics of Latin America or the two chapters for my BioPsych of motivation and emotion class (one week of classes and I'm already swamped, someone send help!). So please tell me that I was not crazy to do this.

Also, please do tell me if you come across some strange mistakes and I will fix it.

And then lastly, I never intended for this to end up being so long. I got a bit carried away when writing it. Seriously, I was planning on like 2,000 words. Funeral home smut demanded more of me, though. So, oh well. It was worth it. Hopefully it will be a good read.

*fingers crossed that people like it*

The funeral home was quiet. Yes, that was a good sign, but Daryl was not sure if he liked the silence or not.

It was almost too quiet, too peaceful.

Not normal under any circumstances.

He kept waiting for something bad to happen and for him to have to snatch up Beth and have the two of them run out of there like the place was on fire. He waited, nothing happened. So he dropped his guard the slightest bit and reminded himself that the place was still locked up tight for the night and the strings of cans were lined up all around the entry ways of the place. He would know if something was up and if someone, something was trying to get in.


Damn it. He didn't want to think about the way she had said that one word.


What the fuck had that meant?


And why the fuck did he up and leave right after that? Oh, that's right—he was an idiot. Because he freaked himself out by being able to reveal something through one look, through not saying anything to her, and she understood what it meant. That was when she said it. Oh.

After that he told himself Beth most likely did not feel the same way. And then he left. A stupid decision, but that was Daryl. He always made dumb decisions that made no sense when it came to women.

However, Beth was not just any woman. She was Beth.

Stop thinking about it, he scolded himself.

He looked absently over at the door that led into a clean bathroom. He should probably shower and get all the dirt and grime off of his skin. Beth had mentioned that to him earlier in the day, before the kitchen incident had happened. He figured that she was right, he needed to bathe. After all, it had been long time since the last time he showered at the prison.

Not that he was actively trying to look presentable for her or anything. It wasn't like that.

Or maybe it was.

Damn it. His mind was all over the place.

Daryl walked to the edge of the bed and dropped his crossbow down onto the floor next to where he would sleep for that night.

Sleep alone.


He didn't fucking like that idea. Not one bit.

Because the thing was that he had gotten so used to sleeping or even simply resting when Beth was with him, right next to him. She had always been a few yards from him, and the same went for her. Daryl had always, without a doubt, been right there when she closed her eyes and drifted off into her dreams.

Now he felt uneasy about this, the whole separate sleeping arrangements that the funeral home had offered up to them with two upstairs bedrooms. It made him unusually tense. Of course, Beth was just across from him in the other room, but still. He hated it. Hated every part of it, even the parts that he knew he shouldn't feel that way because of a number of reasons that he was reluctant to vocally admit to.

Yes, he wanted her there because as much as he would not like to admit to it, she made him feel safe. Something about her made Daryl feel secure, and no one had ever provided that for him before, not once. It was strange to him, but he didn't mind it. He normally kept himself guarded, bordered up like a fort so no one could get through to him. But now? Now he was letting the walls down.

Because of Beth.

For Beth.

And maybe for himself, too, if he was honest.

She changed him, he could feel it. There was a shift inside of Daryl. A different side of him was coming out, was brought out by Beth and her wonderful good-natured aura.

There was another reason he wanted her close, too, other than the safety component if walkers came and the sense of security he felt when she was there. And as creepy as it might sound, Daryl also liked to watch her sleep. Not in a stalker obsessed I'll watch you from your bedroom window kind of way, it was in an admiring way. She was so peaceful when she slept, he noticed that from the very beginning. Beth rarely moved in her sleep, but she did smile, something that surprised Daryl the first time that he saw it happen. But he took it as a sign that she was having pleasant dreams, a luxury that Daryl had never had, but was happy about her being able to have, especially after all the shit that had gone down in the past few weeks.

All that, and Beth Greene still smiled in her sleep.

He really liked that about her.

She was like some other worldly being, if you asked him. She was always so happy, so content. Beth genuinely smiled wide and her eyes showed true emotion, even after everything they had been through. Daryl would look at her and find himself staring on occasion. Little did he know then that he had been falling for her the whole time.

But that was Daryl. Oblivious to feeling until it was smack dab right in his face.

He didn't feel too bad about not realizing it before, though. He had never known anything close to love, so he guessed that it was normal for him not to have recognized it in the beginning. But when he watched her play that piano from the view in the coffin and his heart fluttered in a similar way it had been in the past week, he was fairly certain something was going on.

Daryl ran his hands through his hair, sighing. Sometimes he wished there was a switch and he could turn off his thoughts that ran rampant through his mind. All he thought about was Beth, especially now that he had trapped himself in his room after leaving the kitchen table two hours ago.

He knew that Beth had gone into the opposite room about an hour later. He had heard her light footsteps as she had ascended the stairs and opened up her room, briefly hesitating in the hallway. For a second there, he had thought that she was going to come into the room he had chosen, and his heart had raced a million miles a minute. She didn't, though. And Daryl could not be sure if he was relieved about that or disappointed.

There was too much of a mixture of feelings going on, and Daryl had a hard time differentiating between them.

Now he was back to being reminded as to how damn quiet is was here since he was able to hear his own thoughts in clarity. There was the occasional creak in the house due to the age of it, and that would freak Daryl the fuck out. He would immediately think a walker was in the house, but there never was. And he was beginning to think that the sounds were coming exclusively from his own imagination that was cruelly playing tricks on him to keep him alert and paranoid as all hell.

Because, hey, his mind was not the safest place at this moment. Not even in the slightest.

Daryl attempted to shake the thoughts out by crossing the room and opening the door that led into the bathroom. It was almost all white in there, white walls, white tile, white towels, white countertop around the sink which he thought might be made of marble. How damn fancy. It was a shame that he would get it all dirty by the mess on his clothes and the layers of dirt on his skin. But, then again, it was not liked he actually cared about that. The pristine nature of the bathroom bothered him anyways. Might as well mess it up.

Daryl stripped off his clothes and jumped into the shower, planning on making it quick. The water was cool on his back as he scrubbed off layer upon layer of his own blood, dirt, grime, walker blood, and whatever else had taken up residence on his skin. Half of him did not even want to know what had been on his flesh for weeks.

By the time he shut off the water, the floor of the shower looked scary. And he was going to leave it that way. He stepped out, drying himself off. Daryl shook out his hair once he got his pants back on, deciding that he would go with only that since he would get right in bed.

When Daryl finally laid down, he was restless. He knew it was because Beth was not there with him. It forced him to sigh, knowing she was in the other room across from him and he could not do a single thing about that. Not after what had transpired downstairs earlier in the evening. Daryl wasn't sure if he could ever look Beth in the eyes another time without feeling completely embarrassed all over again.

Shut up. Stop thinking.

Daryl laid flat on his back with the sheets pulled up to his stomach. He had one arm rested behind his head on the pillow as he stared up at the blank white ceiling. It only made Daryl shake his head.

He was a mess.

Beth made him a mess.

He let her make him into a mess.

All this feeling shit was so foreign to him, and Daryl did not have one single clue as to where to go from there.

Another deep sigh escaped from Daryl, something he was doing a lot of that night. What the hell was he going to do come the morning and he had to face Beth? It was not like he could got about ignoring her, considering they were dependent on each other now, and locked into the funeral home together.

Suddenly, Daryl's ears perked up when he heard Beth's door open. He shifted his head to listen better, then heard her light and barely audible footsteps cross the hallway, where his doorknob turned to open, Daryl automatically and instinctively pulling the sheets up to cover up better, and while doing that, Beth swung the door open enough so that she could stand in the frame.

He froze.

Beth's hair was down, long blonde wavy locks cascading across her shoulders, framing her face. She had on a just barely long enough gray T-shirt that was big on her. The milky white color of her legs practically stunned him from where he laid looking at her. Panic rose in him and his breath hitched in his throat upon realizing that she was in nothing but the shirt and probably underwear.

He swallowed hard.

"You look different all clean," she quietly told him, cheek resting against the door frame, fingers playing with the lines on the white painted wood.

Say something you idiot.

"Um," he faltered. "Yeah."


Beth smiled, a giggle filling into the air around her. She hesitated then. He could tell there was something else that she wanted to have said, but held back. Beth looked around the room for a moment or two, looking at the ornate pictures and canvases that hung on the walls before her eyes settled back on him. "Can I sleep with you? In here?"

He almost was not able to answer.

"Come in," he instructed, pulling the sheets down on the other side of the queen sized bed before he got the chance to overthink it.

Beth quickly entered the room, turning to shut the door, and he tried not to look at how the T-shirt she wore fell so close to the bottom of her ass, exposing so much of her skin that he had never seen before. Damn, it was almost physically painful to look at.

Pure torture.

Truthfully, he should not have looked.

But he did, and that was that. Nothing he could do about it now. Because now he screwed himself over yet again since he had the image of her long legs and lean bare thighs that were as pale as could be stuck in his mind, permanently burned into his brain. A nice image, but a dangerous one.

And dangerous was an understatement.

Beth crossed the room quickly, her bare feet tiptoeing across the colder wooden floors until she reached the edge of the bed and got under the covers next to him. Only then did he think that this might have been a bad idea, inviting her to come to bed with him.

Daryl shifted uncomfortably, trying to ignore the sudden strain against his pants.

Not now, he tried to mentally tell his body.

If he thought that it would work, he would be fooling himself. His body still reacted, no matter what.

Daryl hesitantly threw a wary glance over at Beth. Luckily, she was tucked up tight next to him, pulling the sheets up around her midsection as she got situated. She looked a thousand times cozier than she had standing by the door now that they were back together again and neither of them had to sleep alone in this funeral home.

"Thank you," she whispered into her pillow that she let her head get comfy on. "Didn't feel right bein' by myself in that big room. Felt too empty without you there."

"Yeah, I know."

The both of them laid in silence for a number of minutes. Daryl contemplated whether or not he should bring up what happened in the kitchen, that was until Beth decided to do that for him.



Beth moved her pillow out of the way so she could see him better and nothing was obstructing her view. "What did you mean downstairs when we were eatin'?"

There it was.

"Nothin'," he dismissed, not wanting to elaborate, and also not knowing how to form the right words to tell her about the internal feelings that had popped up within the last weeks they spent together. He had always been terrible with words, never found the right ones to use at the right time.

"You meant something," she countered, confident in her response. "I know you did. Why did you leave? I wanted you to stay."

"Do we have to talk 'bout this?"

Beth did not pause even for a second. "Yes."

He huffed, an attempt to show his displeasure in discussing the subject. Daryl did not know what to say, or what to do, so he figured he would repeat something similar to what he had said before when they were in the kitchen and Beth had been writing that considerate thank you note to the owner of the funeral home. "You know what I meant," he whispered in a low voice.

He hoped that she got it, understood what he tried to say without him actually saying the words out loud.

He didn't think he had the vocabulary to express what he felt anyways.

Beth got closer, scooting over until she was directly next to him, but not touching him. He turned his head to the side to look at her. Beth's bright blue eyes stared back at him intently, dark eyelashes creating a shadow. He looked down at her lips for a fraction of a second before he tore his eyes away, knowing he could not think anymore about what it would be like to kiss her.

Daryl sighed, turning back to face the ceiling, to stare back up into oblivion and hopefully drown out the thoughts that bounced back and forth in his head—the dangerous thoughts about Beth.

"What was that for?" Beth asked, curious as to why he sighed so sullenly.

Daryl shrugged, not giving a verbal response to the inquiry. It was not like he would actually be able to tell her the meaning behind his inability to properly communicate what was on his mind.

"Hey, Daryl?"

He tried not to like the way she said his name too much. It always rolled off her tongue so easily, so softly.


"Do you want me?"

Of course he was confused and a bit lost by what she asked him. He knew the idea of what his brain had automatically gone to, what those words had triggered inside his mind, but he was not sure if Beth had meant them in the way he interpreted it. Surely, they were not on the same page here. Beth Greene would never ask him a question like that and insinuate what he thought she was.

His blues eyes snapped back to hers. He searched for some sort of sign that he had it all wrong, that his brain was making him think unrealistic things. But the way Beth looked at him right then told him otherwise, her pupils dilated more than before, eyes sparkling as she waited for an answer.

"What?" he breathed out, disbelief laced in his unsteady voice.

Beth smiled, tilting her head. "You heard me."

His speech became impaired when she said that. She had meant what he thought she did. All Daryl could do was look at her, barely blinking, not saying a single word, but probably revealing to her with his eyes that the answer to that question of hers was yes. A thousand times yes.

Before he could process what was happening, Beth got up from her spot, tossing the covers off of her and him. She swung a leg over him so that she straddled him, her legs on either side of his body.

To say the least, he was surprised.

Never would he have expected her to be so bold, let alone willingly get into the position that she put herself in.

Daryl did not feel the movement of his hands, them having a mind of their own, when they moved from his side to onto Beth's thighs. He was convinced that they somehow ended up their without him consciously knowing it.

In the back of his mind, he knew that he should not be touching her, even if she was the one would initiated the position they were now in. But Beth's bare legs were right in front of him, and he had to reach out and feel the smoothness of her pale skin, the warmth that transferred onto the pads of his fingers.

It was all too good.

And it had been a while for Daryl. His body was practically screaming at him to touch her more.

His hands froze when he finally came to and realized what he was doing. Daryl went to pull his hands away, embarrassed that he had let things get this far already due to his lack of control, but Beth stopped his hands from retracting away from her. Instead, she placed them back onto her body. She guided his hands underneath the shirt, it falling back down onto the backs of his wrists as she moved his hands, his palms flattening on her stomach as they rose up to cup her breasts that were covered by a bra underneath that shirt.

Daryl never meant for a whimper to fall from his lips upon the contact, but one did, and Beth responded by pushing his rough hands against her cupped breasts more.

"Beth, we can't—"

"Shh," she urged. "Just feel."

Yeah, he felt a whole lot of things right at that moment, one of which was the uncomfortable pressure of his dick pressing up against his pants.

But mostly, all he felt was the warm feeling of flesh up against his thumbs and the heat that seeped through the thin material of the bra Beth wore onto his palms.

When her hands released themselves from his own, he kept his own on her covered breasts, reluctant to move them anywhere else. Daryl swallowed hard again, gently squeezing the parts of her than made her a woman, a bit surprised that her breasts seemed to feel bigger than he had initially believed that they were when they were hidden under layers of clothing. But they were nice, filling in his hand perfectly.

Made him damn near crazy.

And the truth was that Beth felt so good. So good that his brain shut off and all his logic dissipated into nothing.

His awkward, unsure movements morphed into something else, something more confident for the sole reason that Daryl knew that he did not have to be anyone but himself around Beth. He didn't have to pretend to be good at this, or the expression on feelings part, or the talking part. She liked him how he was, and what she had just done was evidence for that.

Daryl's slightly nervous hands slipped back down her torso, fingertips grazing her stomach as they went. He paused for only a second when the texture of the soft cotton wrapped up in his hands, and when he sensed no hesitation from Beth, he then pulled the shirt up and over Beth's head with her help to get it all the way off.

He placed it down onto the bed next to him as Beth reached behind and unsnapped her bra, then collected her hair together and tossed it to her back so he could get a good view of her. To be honest, he was in awe. Beth Greene was before him, straddling him, topless, and looking at him in a way that told him that she wanted more. Much more.

And fuck he wanted more, too. Needed more.

His hands traveled back to her lower torso, wrapping around her sides so that four fingers were pressed into her back, thumbs pressing into the skin along her stomach as he felt the bones of her ribcage as his hands slid up the exposed skin, settling at the base of her breasts, calloused thumbs flicking over the skin right below them.

She was beautiful. No other word could describe Beth.

And fucking hell, could he get any fucking harder than he already was? Barely anything had happened, almost nothing, and he was harder than he could ever remember. He was so tuned on that he could barely believe that he wasn't fucking her into the bed already.

But, no, it was not supposed to be that way. Beth was not supposed to be some play thing that he roughly tossed around and used up until he was finished, walking away afterwards without a second glance.

Beth was different.


She deserved to be treated with care.

A giggle came from Beth, and that was when he noticed that she was blushing, but not shying away from his touch.

She leaned in and caught his lips for the first time. Daryl moved his mouth against hers, hands sliding around to her bare back to he could pull her in further. He then wrapped a hand around her neck to kiss her with more force behind the movements, more deeply, and what some might say more passionately.

He let out a shaky and sharp breath, overwhelmed by the urges he felt inside, before he pressed his lips into Beth's again. When Beth finally allowed him to slip his tongue into her mouth, he could not take it anymore. Daryl moaned and grabbed ahold of her securely and gently flipped her down onto the mattress so that she was on her back. He got on top of her, strategically placing himself between her already open legs.

His hand slipped down her chest, feeling and squeezing her breast in his hand for the first time without the bra on. It was better than he had anticipated, and Beth gave a slight gasp at the flesh on flesh contact.

He placed more wet and sloppy kisses onto her neck, leaving a wet trail behind as he worked his way to her perky breasts that looked amazing, as if they were on display for him, waiting for him to pay attention to them. Daryl released a few breaths of hot air onto her skin to try and calm his rapidly increasing breathing rate before he was able to focus on running his lips across the mounds with the hardened buds in the middle.

Beth's hands went into his hair that was a little bit wet from the shower still, grabbing at the roots of his hair as he swirled his tongue on a sensitive spot. Her chest rose up as she inhaled, keeping that breath inside of her lungs for a few seconds before she expelled it back out. Beth yanked at his hair to pull him back up, demanding that he kiss her lips again.

And he was more than happy to oblige with that.

He would do anything, absolutely anything that she wanted him to.

Daryl continued to kiss her, lips feeling every sensation of sexual desire between the two of them. He wanted her, she wanted him, they wanted each other.

There was a remaining part of Daryl that told him that this was wrong. She was too young, too naïve to know what she wanted. And wanting him? He was pretty sure no sober girl had ever wanted him before, they always had to have a haze of alcohol that clouded their judgment before they even considered Daryl as an option. And the need for alcohol actually served as a criteria for both parties involved in the act. Daryl could not recall a single time he fucked without being drunk or at least had two drinks in his system. And now he had not a drop of booze in him, yet felt the most alive.

He felt like he actually wanted to go through with this, and was not doing it purely based off of some internal urge to get it out of his system.

He wanted to feel.

Wanted to be with Beth.

Every inch of her body was so distracting to him that Daryl did not notice how Beth's hands had gotten to his back, and he then realized that he had not been wearing a shirt this entire time. Surely, she felt the lines of torn up skin on his back. There was no way that she did not. But either way, she gave no indication that she was repulsed by them in the way that Daryl was. So instead of pulling away and shutting her out, he let her roaming hands explore his back and the scars that were all over. He did that because he found that he took some pleasure in knowing that Beth was the first to ever touch them.

Every time that Daryl moved his body, since he was lowered onto Beth, he felt the way her breasts brushed against his own bare chest. It drove him completely wild, sanity most likely leaving his brain momentarily. The strain in his pants was one hundred fucking percent unbearable at that point.

Beth must have been able to read his mind because she tugged at the side of his pants. "Take these off," she quietly requested of him.

He grunted, reaching down to pop open the button and unzip them. A part of him was scared about removing them, knowing that all he had on was the pants, and without them he would be naked. That made him vulnerable, and he hated that feeling. Vulnerability had always been an enemy of Daryl's. Yet, he felt safe with Beth, safe enough to expose that vulnerable side to her.

She would accept it, take care of that side of him that was rarely shown to anyone.

She would take care of him.

So, Daryl pulled down his pants with a little help from Beth. Once they were kicked off and down on the floor, Daryl was plastered back onto Beth's body. His breathing became highly unsteady, irregular, ragged once he clearly felt the friction of his hard dick against Beth's warm skin. He moaned against her mouth before he messily kissed her again.

"You never answered me, Daryl," she reminded him, smiling into the kiss, torturing him further.

"I want you," he clarified it for her, his tone gruff and low in pitch, full of desire. "I do."

"I want you, too."

Beth adjusted her hips, her hands moving down to the cotton underwear she had on, dipping her thumbs into the sides to push them down. Daryl yanked them down the rest of the way and tossed them to the side before he was flush up against her again, another small moan coming from his mouth.

The need and urges inside of him made it difficult to stay in control.

He needed her so badly.

"Beth," he managed. Daryl propped himself up on his elbows so he could look at her, make sure that she wanted this and she had no doubt in her mind about giving herself away to him. He pushed away some of her beautiful blonde hair out of her face since some of it was sticking to the edges from the sweat that was faintly on her skin. "You can tell me to stop."

If she said it, he would. No argument. No debating. He would get off her right away.

"I don't want you to stop," she said, brushing some his own sweaty hair away from his eyes so the dark hair did not create a hooded effect, making a shadow cast over his eyes. "I want to share this with you. I've never gone this far before. I want it to be you."

He nodded, kissing her as those words sunk into his skull, telling him that he was going to be her first. Daryl reached down between them, Beth spreading her legs out more. He brushed his fingers against her folds, noticing how wet she was, before he took a finger and pushed inside of her in a tender manner so that he did not hurt her, then added another to stretch her out.

Beth sighed as he felt her adjust around his digits, the tightness of her almost being too much for him, and it made him wonder how long he would be able to last when he was inside of her.

The thought alone made his stomach turn into a knot.

Beth then placed her hands on a new region of his back, one going to his lower back at the base of his spine and the other looping under his arm so that her palm was rested on his shoulder blade. She brought her face away from his and nodded to signal that she was ready, inhaling deeply.

Daryl bit down on his lip anxiously as he lined up his dick and slowly slid inside of her, into her warmth, slowly sinking into what Daryl would refer to as pure heaven.

Fuck. She was so tight, tighter than he thought was possible. And it felt fucking fantastic to him. He was panting wildly and uncontrollably once he was all the way in, staying as still a possible as he felt Beth's walls adjust around him. That in itself was a struggle to get through without coming right then and there.

He should have been surprised by how well their bodies fit together, but for some reason, he was not. They were like puzzle pieces matching up.

After a minute, she tugged on his hair. "Okay. Just go slow," she breathed out.

Daryl put a hand onto her hip to steady himself and pulled out, not much, but enough to send a wave of pleasure through his body when he glided back into her, moaning at the feeling. He did as she said, going slow at first, letting her get a feel for the sensation of him thrusting.

Beth's hands gripped onto him tightly as he moved above her. He molded his body against her as the urge to go faster crept up. Beth encouraged him to keep going, hooking her legs onto his hips and allowing him to go in deeper with quicker thrusts as the feeling of release built up inside.

When he heard Beth expel what sounded like half of a sigh and half of a moan, he was a bit shocked, curious as to what had caused it. He peered down at Beth, his thrusts becoming faster, and saw the surprised look on her face, eyes faintly widened. He pulled out again, then back inside, and Beth's eyes got wider, mouth opening to let out a throaty whimper, letting him know that whatever the hell he was doing was feeling good for her.

He tried to keep at that, hitting the right spot for Beth, wanting her to feel what it was like to have an orgasm. Daryl buried his face into the crook of her neck as his movements fell out of rhythm, panting hard against the delicate skin of her neck. The hand that was on his lower back pressed into him harder, nails scrapping against his skin every time that he thrust inside of her, Beth wanting him to pick up the pace even more.

He was close, he knew that.

Hell, he was grateful he had lasted this long. It was truly a miracle.

But before Daryl gave into his own selfish needs, he took a shot and reached back down between them to rub at that sensitive spot between Beth's legs. She whimpered some more, a few moans coming out to match his own. And soon, he felt the slight shaking of her legs that where tightly hooked onto him, clenching down. That in itself was way more than enough to send Daryl over the edge. He gave it one more deep thrust before he came, other hand going straight into Beth's hair so he could grab a handful of it, moaning onto Beth's shoulder as the release hit and overwhelmed his senses.

It was like the whole world melted away and nothing else mattered to him but Beth in that moment.

She was everything.

Daryl gave in to what his body told him and collapsed on top of Beth, putting all his weight onto her, out of breath, and his muscles relaxing against her as he came down from the high, the trance-like state. Beth contently sighed into his shoulder, planting a few brief kisses there as she relaxed, too.

Daryl pulled out, suddenly realizing he should have done that before he came inside of her, but that was something they could figure out later when Daryl would take the blame for being so irresponsible, so careless. Because right then, their time together could not have been more perfect. And he meant that. Perfect. Every sense of that word applied to the two of them in that specific and wonderful moment that they shared.

Daryl rolled off of Beth, taking the spot next to her. Beth instantly moved, placing her head onto his chest. "That was…"

"Fucking amazing?"

Beth laughed. "Yeah. That. I didn't expect the first time to be so…wow."

Daryl smirked, glad to hear she enjoyed herself and it had not been all one-sided for him.

After a few more beats passed, Beth asked him, "You really think we can stay here?"

Daryl smiled to himself. "Yeah," he said, believing it, and liking the idea of the two of them being there in the place together. "I think we can stay."