Rubbing at her eyes, she figured it must’ve been a very late partier outside who’d woken her. She couldn’t hear music any longer, but people were no doubt up and about. She’d just turned onto her side when she heard it—a low, harsh sound, like an animal caught in a trap and unable to escape. Shoving aside the thin comforter she’d pulled over herself, she jumped out of bed and ran to the living area.
Noah was lying on the air mattress, having kicked off the sleeping bag. Dressed in black boxer briefs, he was curled up on his side, his hands fisted and his teeth gritted so hard that she could see bone white against skin, muscle and tendon taut enough to snap.
Dropping to her knees beside him, she said, “Noah. Noah!” When he didn’t wake, that horrible sound still coming from his throat, she put her hand on his bare shoulder and shook. “Noah, wake up!”
Oh no, he’d taken the sleeping pills. He’d done it in front of her, after showing her the bottle. “There,” he’d said, throwing them back dry. “I’ll sleep. Happy?”
She had been happy, thinking he’d finally get some rest. Now she realized she’d made a terrible mistake. “Noah,” she said, shaking him again. “Noah, wake up, please. Noah.” Crying now, she shook and shook, but he wouldn’t wake from his drugged nightmare.
Not knowing what to do, she ran to the bedroom and grabbed her phone, found Fox’s number. Fox had known Noah the longest, might understand what this was. “Fox,” she said when he answered the phone on the first ring. “Noah won’t wake up and he’s having a horrible dream.”
“I’m on my way.”
“Just you!” she said before he hung up. “Not Molly.” She loved the other woman, but she wouldn’t let anyone but Fox see Noah like this.
He was at the bus door—which Kit had opened—within half a minute after hanging up. Coming inside and pulling the door shut behind him, he said, “Did he take something?”
“Sleeping pills.” She pointed to the bottle on the counter of the kitchenette. “Nothing strong. I checked. It’s just meant to make him drowsy so he’d drift off.” She stroked back Noah’s sweat-damp hair. “Noah, please wake up.”
Fox didn’t say anything. Hauling Noah up, he hit him across the face hard enough that it had Kit jerking back. About to shove the lead singer away from Noah, she suddenly realized Noah had stopped making that trapped, painful sound. “Noah?”
He shook his head slightly, but his eyes remained heavy. Settling behind him, she tugged so that he leaned against her. “Noah, it’s Kit.”
Wrapping her arms around him from the back at the mumble, she just held him. “It’s me, I have you.” Her eyes met the smoky green of Fox’s. “You’ve done this before.” He hadn’t even hesitated in hitting Noah—he’d known it was the only thing that would work. “Will he be all right?”
Fox, his face grim, grabbed Noah’s chin. “Noah. You there?”
A faint nod.
Getting up, Fox said, “I’m going to put on some coffee. Pour it down his throat when it’s ready. Don’t let him fall back asleep.”
“I won’t.” Wiping the heel of one hand over her eyes, she said, “Noah, did you tell Fox about ‘Sparrow’ yet?”
A slow scowl on Noah’s face. “Shuddup.”
Wet laughter shook her body. “Make me.”
“Kit.” He raised a hand, closed it over her forearm. “Pretty Kit.”
The scent of coffee filled the air. Going to the door, Fox said, “He’ll stay a little dopey for a while, so don’t take advantage. I’m going to leave so he can focus on you—it should help.” With that, the lead singer was gone.
Kit tugged hard on Noah’s hair when his eyes began to close. “Stay awake.”
“Mean Hallucination Kit.”
“Going from pretty to hallucination?” Easing him down, she went to quickly grab some coffee.
It only took her a few seconds, but his eyes were closed by the time she came back. “Hey!” She couldn’t bring herself to hit him, so she pulled his hair again. “I’m going to tell Fox about ‘Sparrow.’”
His eyes flicked open. “Hallucination Kit’s not nice.”
“No, I’m not.” Putting down the cup, she pushed and tugged until he was upright enough that she could get behind him again, cradling his back against her chest. “Noah!”