Chapter Six

To be more specific it was the sound of Drake playing the guitar. Megan's breath hitched in her throat. 'But it's nearly ten at night. What is he doing here?'

Honestly, it didn't matter. Almost without realizing it she was running across her room, sending the door flying open with a single push and heading down the hall, her bare feet padding against the floor. She was following the melody.

Down the stairs, through the archway that divided the stairs from the front door, and that was where she stopped. She could see Drake sitting on the couch, guitar resting in his lap as his fingers danced over the strings.

He was humming quietly, seemingly oblivious to the fact that she was in the room. And then she felt like some invisible weight had been lifted off her chest and finally she could breathe.

She didn't have to pretend anymore, that everything was just fine when it clearly was anything but. She didn't have to keep everything closed up behind a controlled smile. It was like she was free for the first time in a long, long, while.

Even though she hadn't said a word he seemed to know that she was there. It almost seemed that the lilting tune that Drake had brought to life faded off by itself as the last note left his throat. He placed the guitar to the floor beside him and looked up at her for a long while. She wondered if he saw what she did when she had stared at her own reflection earlier. But somehow she doubted it.

Without saying a word, Drake opened his arms, a small smile curving the corner of his mouth. Megan didn't hesitate like she would have a few months ago. She didn't scorn him like she knew she would if he had done the very same thing just a few simple years ago. Instead she crossed the room and fell into his embrace, relishing the feel of his arms wrapping tight around her trembling form. He wouldn't let her fall.

For a while she was a little girl again, frightened by the nightmares that haunted her every night, desperate to find refuge from the shadows that loomed in every corner of her room. This was back when Audrey worked late to provide for her two young children. Then it was Drake who she would run to, and he would let her crawl under the covers with him. Instead of taunting her for being a baby he would make sure she was comfortable and they'd talk, about anything. Little nonsense stuff that took her mind off her fears, or he'd tell her stories he made up on the spot to make her laugh. Or he'd sing to her. And sometimes he just let her cuddle up to him and held her tight, so she'd know that there was nothing to be afraid of anymore.

Now she lifted her head and offered a smile. A tiny, truthful smile. "I thought you bailed on me."

Drake tilted his head; a look of surprise crossing his features. "You asked me to come."

He said like it like it was the most natural thing in the world.

She opened her mouth but then shook her head looking down to hide her grin. 'And I'm so glad that I did.'

Megan knew why she had now. It wasn't just because she didn't know what else to do. It wasn't just because she was in desperate need of someone to talk to. It was because Drake had always been there for her. He didn't judge. He didn't try to persecute her.

He was just there. And that was all she needed.