It's still happening. Eliot had thought it was a one off when it happened for the first time. After a week he thought it would get better soon, after a month he started wondering if she just came to him because she liked the breakfast he usually provided, or if she really came to find comfort from her nightmares. After three months he stopped thinking about it altogether. He doesn't mind. Not at all.
Eliot smiles softly; looking down at Parker's curled up form under the blanket. She reminds him a little of a cat. Quietly he turns and leaves the room. He sits down in his living room with a magazine. It's still early. 5 Am. But he's no longer tired. He flicks through the pages when a cry reaches his ear, coming from the bedroom.
Eliot is up an in the bedroom within five seconds, flicking on the light as he enters and rushes to the bed.
"Parker, it's okay", he whispers softly, sitting down on the bed and pulling her into his arms.
"You were gone. Why were you gone, Eliot?" She snuggles into his tight embrace, grabbing his shirt and holding on to him for dear life.
"I'm sorry, Parker. You needed the sleep. I didn't want to wake you."
"You know I can't sleep alone." She whispers. "He came back. He was dead and then he came back and he said it was my fault and then the horse jumped at me and ..." She shivers.
Eliot knows it is useless to tell her it was just a dream. It is even more useless to try and explain to her, that her childhood memories were not going to happen again, that it hadn't been her fault and that horses weren't too bad after all. The nightmares still haunted her and no matter what he said, she never believed him, anyway. There was just one sentence he had found to calm her down.
"It's all right, Parker", he tells her quietly. "I'm here. I'll stay. Nobody can hurt you."
She lets go of him just enough to look into his face and he wipes the tears from her cheeks with his thumb, caressing her skin softly. "Promise?" She asks, shivering a little.
"Promise" Eliot nods reassuringly. "I'll keep you safe."
The magic sentence. Parker sniffles a little before she nods and lets go of him.
"Come on," Eliot whispers and kicks off his boots. "It's still early. Try to catch some more sleep."
They both slide under the blanket, Parker pressing her lean form against his body as if she wants to crawl inside of him. He pulls her tight, wraps his strong arms around her and strokes her hair softly.
"Go back to sleep now. I'll keep you safe.”
No, he really doesn't mind her sharing his bed, snuggling in his arms. As a matter of fact, he has gotten used to it, he actually enjoys it.