Dark clouds hang low in the sky, a chill wind inching them along in a continous blanket of grays with occasional glimpses of the stars and moons as they drift by. It would be a perfect night to be out, if need be, as the air is just slightly humid enough to keep the worst of the cold at bay.

Th’ero can feel the restlessness tugging at him, that all too familiar urge to just get up and move, to walk along the stone bridges and walkways that line the Weyr’s bowls and walls in a network that provides a swift link to the inner corridors and the Wing lounges — if one is brave enough to use them this late into the winter season. For that reason they guarantee privacy and the Weyrleader has ventured there many times as an “escape”. Not always from other people, but usually from himself.

Yet he ignores those impulses. He refuses to pace and to wander aimlessly. Papers line his desk untouched, the office is quiet but comfortably warm with the fire burning low in the hearth. A half eaten dinner rests in a tray on a serving table beside him. Nyalle has long since left her office, if the Weyrwoman had been in there at all today. Th’ero can’t be certain and isn’t entirely sure he cares. His brows knit in a light frown. That thought so unlike himself. He should care, shouldn’t he? What has his mood turning so sour?

He had it in mind to get more of this never-ending paperwork done and now he sits, his mind distracted and unfocused. He fidgets, the tapping of his writing tool against the desk’s surface enough to drive anyone else mad with the irregular tempo and yet to him is almost soothing. Not that anyone else is here but he. Alone and with nothing but the crackling fire as company.

Am I really that shaken by this? Th’ero thinks to himself and at last he is able to bring his tumbling thoughts back to some order. Ahh, yes. He had come here to work, with hopes to have enough of it done that he could spend a little more time with Kimmila the following day. Find something the two of them could do together; work and a dash of pleasure, as he often tries to balance it. Good intentions, but good intentions that brought his thoughts around to why he’s looking to do it in the first place.

She is pregnant again or she isn’t. Still uncertain, but for precaution I took her off of active duty and she agreed. She’s okay with this. So why isn’t he? No, that isn’t right. Th’ero is okay with it and very much so! He’s delighted by the idea and for the possibility of having another child. Excited, nervous and hopeful. Is that it? Shouldn’t be hopeful. She said so herself… It could go wrong. All wrong.

Nervousness turns to concern, concern to worry and worry to anxieties he has no control over. In a small fit of frustration, Th’ero slams the writing tool to the desk and leans back heavily in his chair, arms folded across his chest as he broods. It went wrong once before but we didn’t know then… And it wouldn’t have ended as it did if she hadn’t been so seriously injured. There were none with Kyzen. Why would there be some now? He doesn’t have the answers to that and trying to pry them from Kimmila would no doubt leave her annoyed and frustrated with his lack of reassurance as he tries to find the answers and to solve what cannot be solved.

I can’t control this. And therein lies the problem. Th’ero grimaces, lifting a hand to scrub it along his face, fingers lingering to press against the bridge of his nose. No, he cannot control the natural course of things. Either Kimmila is pregnant and carries to term or she isn’t or her body decides to end it. They discussed this and he came to peace with it. So what brought it back? Suddenly it clicks into place and Th’ero almost laughs out loud at his own foolishness when it’s laid bare out in his head.

Old worries brought back, old concerns and ones that probably have no ground upon which to grow this time around. How will he keep her happy? Comfortable. Busy. It all comes back to that — to his love for her. It won’t be so bad when she can Between again and still can fly and travel. I could bring her to Torince Hold again or perhaps to Keroon. But what of the last months? Th’ero isn’t so sure. He can’t think that far ahead or how she may be, health and emotional wise, in the later stages. And how much will be too much? I don’t want to push her or hold her back. I don’t want to…

Lose her. Th’ero almost flinches away from that thought. Still? He still worries about that? Yes and no. His trust in Kimmila is too great but part of him always knows there is a smal chance. He remembers what he’s promised her time and time again and he will not revoke it, though it doesn’t keep the worry from gnawing at him at times. Times like these, when he should be happy and nothing more. Or is this normal? Sighing, Th’ero rubs at his forehead and grimaces, struggling to keep his thoughts from scattering again. He doesn’t know and he hates not knowing what to do, what to expect and doubly so when there is so much at stake. When the one he loves and adores, the one he cares for, hangs in the balance.

« Would you just come home and sleep you stubborn oaf? » Velokraeth’s presence sluggishly drifts and cuts off his downward spiraling thoughts as effectively as a light smack upside the head. The pale bronze’s voice is sleepy and groggy, having been roused by his rider’s restlessness and a touch annoyed for it. « You do no good to yourself brooding away there. She’s here, safe and asleep, but that is comfort enough for you and you know it. Her warmth and presence is far better than that of a desk, hmm? »

Th’ero snorts out loud and rolls his eyes to the ceiling for his lifemate’s reasoning. No, you’re right, Velokraeth. Being here is doing him no good and in his mind he can hear the bronze snort smugly. Of course he’s right! He always is. Pushing to his feet, Th’ero puts out the fire in the hearth, moving through the room by glowlight alone. Slipping on his jacket, he can still feel his thoughts racing with all those concerns and anxieties, all the unknown answers and the uncertainty but he pushes them back. His paperwork will wait for another day. Sitting here, alone, was doing nothing to help him.

Help is back in his weyr. She may be asleep, but it doesn’t matter. Velokraeth was right, Th’ero will find the calm and peace he needs just by being at her side. As he always has, as he always will. And if come morning his thoughts are no less scattered, he will talk. No doubt awkwardly at that and that brings a crooked half-smirk to Th’ero’s lips as he steps out of the office and down through the council rooms.

When will I ever learn? Th’ero asks himself as he pauses on the administration ledge to inhale deep of the night air. Chuckling dryly, his mood seems to lift with each step he takes closer to his weyr — their weyr. I can be such a fool, sometimes. He could be worse. Quietly he enters inside and quietly he steps into the bedroom and after undressing, he slips beneath the covers to nestle up against Kimmila’s side, cautious not to disturb her from her sleep.

He may not sleep and his thoughts may plague him even here but he is content and calmer. There is no restlessness, no brooding or dark, grim thoughts.

He is not alone anymore.