Sugar, We're Going Down Swinging
"What's your favorite color?"
The question cuts through the otherwise silence of the night and Tyson Reed feels himself being pulled away from the brink of sleep he was on the verge of.
Amy Dunn has moved into his condo less than two weeks earlier and he is still adjusting to her habits - like asking him questions just as he is about to fall asleep.
He knows why she does it and it isn't just because Amy redefines the word "chatty". She does it because she likes to have conversations. She likes to hear him talk to her. It is her way of reassuring herself that their relationship isn't completely one-sided because for a while, in the beginning, she felt exactly that.
So he answers and his voice is low and gruff from his exhaustion.
He can practically hear her frowning through the dark. "Grey isn't really a color."
"You're thinking of white," he says, rolling onto his stomach and throwing an arm across her hip. He finds that since she has moved in, he is always seeking her body out in his sleep. "Or black. One of those."
He yawns and Amy moves onto her back, his arm now across her middle.
"Grey," she repeats as if it’s some foreign word on her tongue. "Mine is yellow."
"Yellow is too bright."
She laughs at that but then it dies down until she grows quiet. He can hear her frowning again. He may not be a big talker but that has only taught him to truly listen to everything around him and Amy just happens to be a very loud thinker.
Even when she is silent - which is a rarity - Tyson is still able to hear her.
"We're very different," she comments but he can hear an edge to her voice and he knows that this is one of those times that he really needs to talk to her because if he doesn't, she is going to start panicking and a seed of doubt will plant in her mind and Tyson has found that those seeds are too stubborn to remove once they've taken root.
"I like that about us," he says, moving his head from his pillow onto hers, his nose pressing to her cheek and his forehead resting in her pile of reddish-blonde curls.
She smells like the rain that is softly pattering outside. Fresh. Clean. Like springtime.
"You do?" She asks, turning her head to look at him, their noses now touching.
He nods. "I need a girl like you. Bright and happy and unable to ever shut up." She smacks his arm lightly and the corner of his mouth quirks up in a smile. He slowly blinks his eyes open and finds that she is staring directly into his and even in the darkness of his bedroom - correction, their bedroom - he can see the sea blueness of her orbs. "I need someone who isn't me. I need you."
That makes her smile and she kisses him. He can feel the smile bloom wider against his mouth and he doesn't know how he does it but somehow, he has figured out how to say things that put her at ease even if he thinks what he is saying isn't that great or prophetic.
He may not say something all of the time but when he does, it seems to be exactly what Amy needs to hear.
It’s a skill he’s glad he has.
"Anything else?" He prods though he isn't sure why.
He really wants to get to sleep since he has to get up in just a few hours for his usual five-mile run and then go to the gym for training. But he doesn't want to go to sleep until he knows that she's okay.
"Favorite movie?" Amy asks, her fingers tracing up and down on his forearm.
She smiles. "Because of the boxing?"
"Because Robert DeNiro's the man."
She laughs this time and again, he feels his own lips being pulled upwards in a smile. Amy is one of two people who can actually make him smile - the other being his older brother.
"What's your favorite part on my body?" She asks but she is still laughing, joking with him, not expecting a response.
Tyson answers anyway. "Your skin."
"My skin? Really?" She asks, somewhat confused.
He nods. "It's the softest skin I've ever felt. I love it."
She's quiet after that. She gives him another kiss on the lips, a soft gentle one that silently tells him he can go to sleep now. He closes his eye, maneuvering his head until it is on her shoulder, his face pressed in the crook of her neck, and he feels her slip one arm around his shoulders while the other begins to slowly stoke her fingers through his hair.
He feels his entire body relax and he wonders how he ever got to sleep without Amy in bed with him.
And then, just as he is about to slip off to sleep for the second time that night, she speaks again.
"I need to go and buy some more moisturizer."