The first thing she noticed was the sounds, the deafening, vibrating sounds that seemed to echo all around her. Her head was pounding as she opened one eye, straining against the heavy pull to close it again. With a grunt, she rolled onto her side, both eyes open as she took in her surroundings.
Suddenly the sounds made sense. Crickets, wind rushing through the leaves above her, coyote howling off in the distance. As she sat up, her temples throbbed down to a solid hum before dissipating to nothing.
The thought that came to mind was that she was dreaming. The trees looked so familiar, the stars shining above her the same as before. Her fingertips ran over her stomach, feeling the small tremors moving with her. Her eyes shot ahead to the parting space between a few trees, tall grass on the other side. As soon as her feet were under her, she found herself venturing forward. She could feel eyes on her even if no one was around.
Would it be like her dream? No cloaked figure was present but she was here all the same. And Kyle? There was nothing out across the field but the sense of foreboding refused to leave her gut. A snap sounded behind her, her head slowly twisting as she looked behind her. The inky blackness yielded no answers. Something was here…or someone. An unfamiliar heartbeat, shuffling feet and then silence.
She didn't have time to figure out why she was here, she had to go. She found it confusing that it didn't take her long to get back to the cabin, considering she couldn't remember the trip before. The only thing she did know was that somehow she was standing outside, staring at her reflection in the window.
It was in that moment the door opened, a dark figure standing in the arch. Her body jolted before she realized who it was.
"What are you doing?" He stood behind her, their faces blurring into the glass. "Jessi?" His hands rose to her shoulders, the heat generated made her realized how cold it was.
"I don't know." She turned. "Am I dreaming?"
His expression was unreadable. "No." After a pause. "Where'd you go?"
"I don't know." Her arms reached out as his wrapped around her. His scent was comforting, like coming home. As she buried her nose in his chest, her eyes closed, her body starting to relax. "What are we doing here?" She sighed. "We can't escape them?"
"Did something happen?"
"No." Her eyes focused on the darkened forest around them. "But I'm scared something will. I can feel it, something's coming." He was silent next to her. "I'm afraid I won't be strong enough." She felt him rub away the tears trailing down her cheek. "And it scares me."
He hooked a finger under her chin raising her face, but her eyes refused to move from the darkness beyond the light. "You're the strongest person I know."
"I'm not." She pushed herself out of his arms. "I don't know how to protect him…from what's coming. I'm afraid for us. I'm afraid it won't be enough that I won't be enough."
"We're safe here." He reached out for her, frowning when she stepped back.
"Are we?" She ran restless fingers through her hair. "I don't remember falling asleep Kyle. I don't know how I ended up out there…and it scares me."
"We'll figure it out."
He sighed. "I don't know."
She nodded. "It'll never be over. They're still out there. He's still out there."
"He's not after us."
"And that makes it okay?" Her green eyes were fierce with anger. "He killed my mother! And you just let him walk away."
"It wasn't like that."
Her jaw clenched as she crossed her arms over her chest. "And you never went after him either." Without another word she retreated into the house closing the door after her, no long caring if he followed at that moment.
His eyes were on the door a hand rubbing at the back of his neck before he paused, unmoving. His skin vibrated as he felt the hair under his hand stand up. There was something in that darkness but it was useless to follow it, knowing he wouldn't find anything. With a sigh he headed to the door, wondering for a moment if she locked it, and opened it slowly. The lights were off, he couldn't hear anything, but it was the least of his worries. He knew she'd need a moment, they both were on edge.
His thoughts drifted to when he had woken to find her gone. That moment of panic was one he hadn't had in a long time. He watched her fly through the air, wincing as her back hit the wall with a loud crunch. He couldn't think about if she was hurt, dead. He needed to stick to the plan but his body was cold, his heart beating uncontrollably as he prayed for Cassidy to buy it. The memory was still fresh, still tender. They had to do what they did, but it was still a risk.
He found himself at the bedroom door, his arm reaching out for the knob, his fingers never making contact. Leaning his forehead against the door, he closed his eyes and listened to her heartbeat before he turned and walked away heading for the stairs. The darkness was thicker down here but he still found his way to the door, to the noted keypad, quickly pushing past it. There was no longer a need for security, the melody no longer needed to open the door. The empty room that lay beyond still made him pause after all this time. He found his fingers sliding over the table, the folded dusty blanket, to the wires sticking out of the wall. Adam, the name repeating over and over in his memories, but with the same results each time. Sadness. Why couldn't he have done more, paid more attention? Maybe he could have saved him.
Shaking his head he tossed the thought away backing out of the room not bothering to close the door after him. He sensed her rather than heard as he spotted her standing on that last step, clutching the railing as her eyes met his.
"I'm sorry." Her voice was quiet, no more than a whisper, but he heard it.
"Me too." He didn't move any closer and she made no move to either. "I'm not used to…being unable to fix things. I couldn't fix Adam and I can't fix our situation."
She moved closer, stopping in front of him. "Adam wasn't your fault."
He nodded. "But this is. I should have stopped Cassidy when I had the chance."
"You couldn't. It's not who you are." She smirked. "And I'm grateful." She winced at his unbelieving stare. "I may not act like it but I am. I'm glad you're with me even if it isn't safe." She turned and headed up the stairs stopping midway. "I need you. I'll always need you." With a sniff she left the room closing the door behind her leaving him in silence.