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When the bedroom remains empty in the late hours of night, Evelyn, in her nightgown, groans as she pushes herself off the mattress to find Rylen. How will she find him this evening, still pushing reports or asleep on top of the unfinished ones? Rylen with the knack of not knowing his exhaustive states and exerting himself well beyond that to the point of passing out, she carries an idea of what she’ll find below in his office.


Sure enough, as she rounds the last corner of the stairs, he leans into his hands, eyes closed, tipping over to the point of falling and hitting his head on the desk in a matter of minutes. Sometimes she lets him do it, or wakes him up to follow her up to bed for a proper sleep, but they work nonstop lately and she knows these brief naps help better than sleep in their bed, where he tosses and turns while worrying about the tasks left to accomplish.

She eases his chair back gently, moving his head off his palms to rest it against her chest.  Cautious as to not wake him, she squats down to slide one arm under his leg, the other behind his back. A loud grunt echoes in the otherwise quiet room as she lifts, despite her best attempt to muffle it between her clenched teeth. Is Rylen heavier? They pick each other up often, part of their competitive natures for strength comparisons,  but she could swear Rylen weighs a little more than the last time.

 

Well, he did love the new chef we got. Maybe he packed on a few pounds.

 

Even still, she carries him with no real struggle,  bringing him upstairs to deposit in their awaiting bed. After heading back downstairs to put out the candles, she sits on the edge of the mattress to unlace his boots, quietly slipping them off to place them by the nightstand. When finished, she brings the covers to under his chin before crawling in on the opposite side. Her hands reach through the darkness to wrap him in her nightly embrace, and he shifts as if on reflex, scooting back into her.


A low moan comes out of his mouth, accompanied by a muffled, "Evie?"

She reaches up, her nails scraping along his scalp as she shushes him. "Go back to sleep, Ry." Her lips brush the back of his neck before she lets her head sink into the pillow.

"Mmkay," he yawns, his body relaxing back into hers. She closes her eyes, the sound of his breathing lulling her into her own sleep.