Matt woke up in the middle of the night, sweating. That dream of being run over by a subway train felt just so real. His room was completely dark, and he could barely make out Randy’s form, sleeping just a couple of feet away. He rubbed his eyes sleepily and checked the watch on the side table. It was just over two o’ clock in the night. He felt for his glasses on the side table and put them on.
He slid out of his bed quietly, planning to go to the kitchen and eat something. Light was streaming into the living room from the adjoining balcony. He felt that something was wrong – he remembered shutting the balcony doors, but he could feel a slight breeze blowing in. He tiptoed to the doors and peered out. Holly was standing there with her back towards him, looking out. He wondered if he should go out and ask what she was up to so late in the night, or leave her alone. He could see only a part of her face, and she looked a little…homesick.
‘Hey’ he said, slowly walking out, ‘What’s up? No sleep?’ she nearly jumped a mile in shock on hearing his voice. Her eyes had a hunted look as she turned towards him. She was probably thinking hard about something. In fact, it seemed as if she was crying—he could see tear marks on her face. She instantly brushed them away, and looked away.
‘Nothing’ she said, trying to modulate her voice, ‘Why aren’t you asleep?’
‘I was’ he yawned. He waited for her to give a reason on why she was staring out of the balcony so late in the night, but she didn’t say anything. Instinctively, he placed a hand on her head, and ruffled her hair. She felt blood rush to her face, but she liked it. It was almost as if he cared. As if, he was silently comforting her. She felt weak, just letting him ruffle her hair like that, and decided that it was time to break the silence.
‘Who was it on the phone in the evening?’ she asked randomly.
‘During dinner?’ he asked. She nodded. ‘It was my cousin, Shaun –’
‘Morgan?’ she asked, suddenly alert, ‘Were you talking to Shaun Morgan?’
‘Yeah…yeah’ he said, ‘D'you know him?’ She nodded. ‘He’s gonna stay here for a couple of days’, he said, ‘He’s coming on Friday evening. His mother’s aNew Yorksocialite, and she's going toCanberrafor her ‘annual family visit’. Her family has a huge diamond business there.’
‘Okay’ she smiled at him, ‘I better go to sleep if I have to wake up tomorrow.’
Matt waited for a couple of seconds after she went, and crawled back to his bed. He lay there with his eyes closed, turning and tossing uneasily, but sleep didn’t come…