149 Days Until Bravery And the Uncertain End
Zeydar was put in a tent surrounded by blankets and supervision. They had found an IV drip in the facility, and with the combined help of those who had gotten their certifications, Evester felt more confident in it all. His friends had gone to school for things not like this, all for the sake of their futures — and in a way EverDanger, as it supported them — but they’d never done something like this. There would be absolutely no Dreams for Zeydar from this point on and Evester was perhaps more nervous than Zeydar who was sitting patient on his new cot bed.
“We are going to be with you.” Evester told him when Rayda walked out the tent and the two were alone. The reassurance was more for Evester than it was for Zeydar.
“Bad move.” Zeydar shook his head. Evester took out the speakers and placed them on the floor. They were wireless, and if everything worked properly, would work from a far. “What is that for?”
“I recorded my heart beat for you.” Evester stated even though he knew it was one of the most corny things he could say. He felt embarrassed for all about two seconds before continuing to set them up. He knew how Zeydar had used his heart beat as a life line for days. If nothing else, the sound might ground him when the Dreams remnants overtook him, causing him to crave them more than reality.
“You want me to obsess over you.” Zeydar coughed embarrassed himself.
“I want you to stay focused.” Evester looked up to Zeydar from where he was kneeling on the ground and saw Zeydar examining him. Zeydar’s eyes traveled from head to tone, leaving Evester feeling completely exposed. He’d never felt the way before, even when stark naked waking in the beds of strangers who stared at him like a museum piece. It was like Zeydar’s scrutiny of him in that moment, would make or break him for an eternity, should he let it. His breathing became shallow as he waited for Zeydar’s eyes to drift once more to Evester’s.
“Stay away if you want to survive.” His voice was mellow, and calloused. There was a tinge of fear laced into it that Evester noted as the same fear he felt for Zeydar.
“If we stay away, you may die.” He said we, he meant himself.
“Consequences worth taking.” Zeydar sighed.
“No.” Evester moved to the bed, sitting next to Zeydar. He took Zeydar’s hand that was free from the IV and monitors. “I watched us try to make you do it once. I have seen you struggle this whole way. I know you.” I want you alive. But he did not say the final words, wanting them to be implied.
“I will destroy you.”
Evester doubted it. Zeydar had been out of his right mind and saved Valaria. He’d survived Arcadia. He’d not once attacked them with his magic when they tried to get him to detox the first time. Each time they fled, when they had pushed hi to the brink, not once had Zeydar’s magic hurt them. Evester believed that based on probability, if Zeydar could not control it, it would have lashed out by this point. It had not, which meant he was better than he thought himself.
However, what they were doing was going to be new for all of them.
“I will destroy you, Evester.” Zeydar pulled his hand from Evester’s, glaring at him and pleading with him to stay away. There was an innocence and terror in the eyes that Evester refused to ignore.
Evester could think of better things to say, ways to imply and not outright state the emotions he had yet to put a name to, however, he was tired. Evester laced his fingers through the hair on the back of Zeydar’s head, pulling them together so that their foreheads touched. “You already have.”
There was silence for a moment before Zeydar, hesitant, spoke in a whisper. “You are just saying that.”
“I am.” He was saying what came to his mind now, not what would help the situation.
“And thus, it doesn’t matter.” Zeydar shook his head pulling back a bit. They starred at each other, the space between them growing in heat and the tension between them growing in intensity.
“Not really.” Yet, Evester hadn’t peeled Zeydar’s hand away when he felt like his wrist were breaking, when he felt the weight of Zeydar’s body on top of him, when he’d forced Zeydar to stay calm. He could think of a hundred whens, and knew now was no different. “But we say lots of things that don’t matter. Doesn’t make saying them any less important.”
Zeydar’s free hand grabbed Evester by the back of his hair. He did not take it off of him. Instead he held to Evester for comfort, again. “If I can’t focus.”
“Then focus on me.” Evester answered him, feeling the spark between them. The moment had come to make a decision. Emotions had to be named then, needed to be stated outright. “I—“
“Okay.” Uly came into the tent, shattering the moment with insensitivity. “Evester you aren’t good for this. Leave it to Rayda, Onyx, and Lynx.” Uly was to monitor Zeydar’s mind and keep Zeydar sane. He stopped walking, seeing the situation the two were in, in full view of what was about to have happened. Evester wanted to cuss him out, but refrained from doing so, praying that the moment before could be salvaged. “Ah. Kim told me this would happen.”
“Nothing is happening.” Zeydar forced Evester’s hand from him, and Evester peeled himself back. Evester looked to Uly who gave him an incredulous look and then shook his head. He was too anxious to be angry.
“Its going to take a few hours for the effects to really begin to manifest, and then it will hit. You’ve been cutting down on your dosage, your body has already gotten used to the crisis of limited Dreams for months now. Your detox will hit the same as you have probably felt before and I know you are prepared. It’s the after I’m worried about.” The after the initial drop that was up in the air. “Once it is all out of your system, all the way, you will still have cravings.”
Zeydar hesitated for a moment before nodding. “I know.”
“And it may make you think things.”
“And want to hurt yourself.”
“And others.” Zeydar’s eyes were focused and more determined than Evester had seen them moments before.
“Is this what you want?” Uly asked him.
“You can’t save the world, if you can’t save yourself.” And with Zeydar’s answer, Evester knew it was his time to leave.