[This post is from Phelan’s point of view.]
“Matt is not going to want to let this happen,” Marin was saying, her voice coming from somewhere behind him as Phelan stepped out his door, rubbing sleep from his eyes. The hall was dim, which was welcome, because his unexpected nap had done little to help ease his thumping headache. They came from time to time and they never boded well. Jacqueline had given him something to help him sleep, both of them hoping it would help, but sadly, it had been to no avail.
“While any other time, I would be more than happy to give him what he wants, this time, I can’t.” Hecate’s voice was firm, though quiet. “I love him and I respect him, but we can’t both be selfish about this. If I don’t go, we’re at a disadvantage and I can’t afford to lose any of you or this place—and you guys can’t afford to lose this place, either.”
Oh, I don’t like the sound of this at all. Phelan massaged his temple, turning toward the sound of their voices. “What’s the matter now?”
There was a silence where the two women looked at each other in the dim before Marin finally answered. “The other shoe dropped. Where have you been?”
“In bed,” Phelan said, moving slowly toward them. “Migraine was making me nauseous. Jac thought maybe laying down would help.”
“Did it?” Marin asked.
“No,” he said, careful not to shake his head. “Not enough, anyway. Sleep helped maybe a little to take the edge off, but it’s still there. Stomach seems like it’s back under control for the moment, though.” Still, he didn’t think he’d be eating anything anytime soon, just in case. “So the other shoe dropped how?”
“Well, that diffuse bad feeling we all had this morning turned into a threat and an ultimatum,” Hecate said. “Now I have to go convince my husband that he can’t stop me from marching into war with the rest of you.”