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February 26, 2023 7:14 am  #1


late at night

In the middle of the night, Nina wakes up to the sound of crying.

She doesn't process the sound at first, blinking through the haze of sleep, trying to ascertain what woke her, but soon the drowsiness clears, she turns over and looks up, seeing exactly what she expects from being woken by soft sobbing in the night— her girlfriend, Josie, sitting up beside her in bed and hugging a pillow to her chest, crying quietly. She's barely illuminated by the nightlight they leave on so neither of them trip getting up in the dark, but Nina can see the tears streaming down Josie's face, dripping from her cheeks and chin.

"Hey," Nina murmurs, lifting herself up on one elbow. Josie's pillow is already spattered with tears, like she's been crying for a while now, and the tears are still flowing. "You okay?"

Josie makes a noise somewhere between a chuckle and a sob, loosening her grip on the pillow to wipe her cheeks with one hand, scrubbing at her eyes with her fingertips. "Yeah, I, I just had a bad dream," she hiccups, "And now I can't stop crying."

Josie's eyes are already welling up again. As Nina watches, a tear falls from her lashes onto the pillow, and then another, and a third. Little streams of tears start from the corners of each eye, soon joined by more, until tears are falling like rain onto the pillow, growing more damp by the moment.

Nina makes a sympathetic noise and sits up the rest of the way, wrapping an arm around Josie and pulling her against her side. Josie rests her head on Nina's shoulder, keeping the pillow hugged to her chest, soaking up every tear that falls. "What was the dream?"

Another choked laugh. Josie closes her eyes, and more tears fall onto the pillow. The few that don't fall from her face have trailed down her neck and over her chest. "The usual. Losing you."

"Oh, honey," Nina murmurs, hugging Josie tighter. "I'm not going anywhere." Josie turns toward her, and tears start to land on her skin, soaking into the collar of her sleep shirt and trickling down her neck. After a moment, Josie starts to sob, quietly, but so hard that it shakes her whole body. She shoves the pillow aside, giving Nina room to hug her close, kissing the side of her head as Josie cries into her neck.

By the time Josie's sobbing eases and she sits up, Nina's shoulder is soaked. Josie giggles at the sight, her face so smeared with tears that the ones still falling get lost in it. "Sorry," she hiccups.

Nina passes her a few tissues, giving her a moment to clean herself up, checking her phone to see what time it is. Almost two in the morning.

Josie rolls over to her side of the bed and picks up her water glass, draining it slowly. When she sets it down, Nina looks up, and sees Josie's shoulders still shaking.

"Sweetheart?" Nina asks.

"Sorry," Josie repeats, sobbing the word. "I know I'm a mess."

Nina tugs on Josie's sleeve until she turns back to her, gathering her back into her arms. "Hey. It's okay, I promise. It's okay that you're a mess. I signed up for a mess, remember?"

Josie giggles again, a little less sadly. Tears run down her face in steady streams, dripping onto Nina's shirt. "Yeah," she hiccups. "You did." She presses her forehead against Nina's temple. "You're not getting rid of me."

"Not a chance," Nina replies. She lifts a hand, delicately wiping tears from Josie's cheek with her thumb. She lets her hand linger there, as more tears fall, running over her fingers. "You want to lie back down, honey?"

"Yeah," Josie replies. "I'll get back to sleep eventually." She'll cry herself to sleep, she means — and Nina will hold her while she does. They've done this before, and it'll happen again.

Nina does just that as they lay down together, wrapping her arms around Josie's back, while she hugs her pillow back to her chest. Nina holds on tightly, feeling the quiet sobs that shake Josie all the way through, knowing the pillow is getting as soaked as Nina's shirt did.

Josie finds Nina's hand with one of hers and squeezes it tightly. She raises it to her face, covering her eyes, and Nina feels the tears under her fingers as Josie cries.

It's like that they fall asleep.

 

February 26, 2023 12:39 pm  #2


Re: late at night

I love this so much! You quickly and effectively established that these two are in a longstanding trusting relationship. Especially the line “It’s okay that you’re a mess. I signed up for a mess.” Such a deeply comforting line, in this context.

You’re really good at constructing little slice-of-life crying moments and showing how impactful they can be. 

 

February 26, 2023 3:28 pm  #3


Re: late at night

I loved your story. I could picture every detail vividly. I loved all the comforting. It was really sweet.

 

December 11, 2023 9:19 pm  #4


Re: late at night

More story like this type, Very good story, Thank you so much sharing.

 

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