It took a long time, I know. I'm sorry. Enjoy?

/

Everything was a little hazy in Ellie's mind. It had been the longest three days of her life and there was a nagging feeling in the back of her mind and her gut that this was only the beginning.

Simply entertaining the idea of an invasion had almost been amusing, until they couldn't find anyone in town. The foreign soldiers in miniature tanks with semi-automatic rifles only solidified the groups ideas. The bullets streaking towards them in the showgrounds car park only cemented it.

She had tried to get a little sleep at Robin's house during the day, but it was proving difficult. The residing level of guilt that settled in her stomach prevented it. Even trying to focus on Fi was hard. Something that should have been easy, especially with the girl asleep next to her, was not as simple as it once seemed.

Their rescue mission definitely put them on the map for their now confirmed enemies, and all of a sudden Corrie's house was nothing more than a smouldering pile of ashes. Corrie was her priority, the injured best friend who needed her more than ever.

Chris nearly got them killed, at least according to Ellie and until they got back to Hell, no one was allowed near her, no one could talk to her. Homer had taken the lead and the driver's seat just so she could get a little rest. And not murder the newest member of their troupe.

Ellie woke up in her tent back in Hell to a small fire and in clothes she was sure she hadn't been wearing when they got back. She woke up to Fi, simply watching her with curious pale brown eyes.

"Hi," the blonde whispered.

"Hi," Ellie managed to croak back. She was burrowed rather tightly in her sleeping bag, closely to the blonde as if seeking comfort or warmth. After the slight breakdown, Fi seemed like the only one to brave her possibly fiery wrath. Or at least was the only one willing to be the first to see Ellie when she woke up.

"How do you feel?" she asked quietly.

Robin was technically the third member of their tent but during their time in paradise, the blonde and the brunette had become just that little bit closer; the fire gave off just enough light to see each other during the darkness. They never talked, partly for fear of waking Robin, and partly for fear of their words being used as blackmail by Homer.

A familiar warm hand came out to gently tug at the bottom of her hair line across the back of her neck. It was so Fi. She was warm, comforting, safe. "Crap."

"I bet," the blonde smiled softly. Ellie shuffled as close as she could in the confines of her sleeping bag.

A hand crept out to lightly grip the pale wrist resting on her neck.

"You're okay, Ellie," was whispered in the early morning light. Lips met her forehead in a gentle kiss, a reminder that she wasn't in the alone, that it wasn't her burden to carry. They were together and that was all that mattered.

"I am now." She burrowed in a little deeper into the lose embrace and drifted off once more.