[This post is from Marin’s point of view.]
“But you don’t want to ask him.”
I winced at the certainty in Thom’s voice—in part because he was right, but mostly because I wished he hadn’t realized he was right. He sighed into my hair.
“Gods and fucking monsters—”
“No,” he said, his voice gentle and faint. “No, Mar, please. Please, don’t run from this. What if it’s all connected?”
“I hope to hell it’s not,” I said, my throat constricting. “Gods, Thom, I can’t even begin to fathom what that would mean. It’s too—it’s too much space, too much time, too many factors. How? How the hell could it be connected—and who are we thinking’s connected? Her to Menhit and Anhur? Her to Leviathan? Something or someone else?”
I was crying, now, the tears stinging in my eyes, on my cheeks, and I could taste the salt of them on my lips and against my tongue. My throat was so tight that it was hard to speak, my heart trapped in some sort of vise.
“Just leave it be a little while longer,” I begged in a whisper. “Please, Thom. Just—leave it be.”
He stayed quiet for a long time, stroking my hair. I felt him swallow. I hugged him a little tighter, squeezing my eyes shut.
“What if you’re wrong?” he finally asked, his voice barely more than an exhaled breath.
“Pray I’m not,” I whispered into his shoulder. “Warnings or no, dreams or no, we have to pray I’m not. Phelan and Seamus know. They know she attacked me during that fight. They know she’s out there, they know she’s a threat. None of us have talked about connections.” It was, of course, a conversation that I’d been trying to avoid.
I was just too afraid, but at the same time I trusted them. I trusted them to be vigilant, to make sure we’d be ready. Despite what both of them may have said or felt to the contrary, they hadn’t failed us yet.
All I could do was pray they never did.