Riwenne deals with a lot as a divine warrior, which often leads to nightmares. When she wakes up, her girlfriend, Kyra, is the first one there to comfort her. This scene from my new WIP, Riwenne & the Ethereal Apparatus, shows how Kyra and her friends help Riwenne calm down after her sleep is disturbed.
Kyra and I shuffled downstairs and made some tea in the kitchen. The building we shared with our friends was actually an old cafe, abandoned by the owners when our city declared independence from the owners. The upper floors had enough rooms for us to sleep in and the closed business gave us space for team meetings. Sitting in a smaller booth in the dining area, we sipped the hot beverage. We were silent but I rested my head on Kyra’s shoulder, feeling her presence soothe my jangling nerves.
After a few minutes, the bell rang as the front door swung open. Janera, a tall girl wearing a simple green frock, came in balancing a pink cardboard box on each arm. “Oh, you’re up!” she said with a disappointed shake of her auburn hair. “I didn’t have the time or supplies to make breakfast, so I tried to run out and grab something before everyone else was awake. Guess I didn’t make it in time.”
“Here, let me help you with that.” I hopped up and snatched a box from her grasp. Inside, I found more than a dozen pastries. Grinning, I stuffed a sprinkled confection into my mouth, and the sugary explosion lifted my mood. “We just got here,” I said around a mouthful of crumbs.
Kyra raised her eyebrows. “I don’t know if you caught that, but I think she’s trying to say that we haven’t been downstairs very long. Riwenne had a nightmare so we came for the tea.”
Janera chuckled. “I caught the gist of it.” She ruffled my hair and took the box back from me, bringing it into the kitchen. She reemerged with the pastries arranged on a platter, plus a stack of plates and another teacup. Reaching for the teapot, she said, “It was a rough night’s sleep for me, too. Hard to rest after the news we just got.”
My face fell and I slumped back into my seat. “Yeah,” I said with a shake of my head. “Let’s not dwell on it right now. Don’t want to spoil our appetites.” I reached for another pastry.
Kyra rolled her eyes, but her lips twitched in a faint smile. “I don’t think it’s possible. You’re always hungry.”
I stuck my tongue out. “That’s not true.”
Janera smirked over her teacup but said nothing.
“What smells so good?” a husky voice called down the stairs.
“Pastries!” I said around another mouthful. I swallowed and grinned at Vilqa, another friend who shared our home.
Vilqa was non-binary, which meant they didn’t identify as fully male or female. Today, they wore a split blue skirt over trousers and a matching vest. Their asymmetrical green hair fell over the left side of their face. They dragged a chair over to the table and sat down backwards, leaning their arms over the backrest.
“Help yourself,” Janera said with a smile, pushing an empty plate across the table. “Do you want tea? I can get you another cup.”
“Oh, don’t get up,” Vilqa said with a shake of their head. “I’ll get more cups for everyone.” They shuffled into the kitchen.