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All that Calum wanted to do was lay there. Have the pillow beneath his head and the comforter on top block him from the rest of the world.

He was exhausted. The band's new album had been released and it had been go go go, a two week break hadn't been nearly enough and he was on the verge of collapsing. For good. He wanted to run away but knew that wasn't an option so he laid there and tried to drown out wandering thoughts with the silence but it didn't work, it never does.

His mind began drifting to another place, far into the beyond, past the surface of happiness he used and into the words that swirled in the depth of his being. It was there Calum allowed himself to truly be, to feel. Not held up by regulations of anyone or anything, but a place where he was free to let his true self out and fall into the clutches of who he really was, someone he thought he could always count on. Stuck in the ocean of his mind was a good place for him to be. Most nights. Tonight was not one of those nights.

Laying there with his guard let down he forgot to put up barriers against the relentless demons that like to come out and play in the gaps between dawn and dusk, the demons that don't just stay in his mind. They liked to travel up and down his body, showing in the tears glossing over his eyes, the squeezing of his heart, the compression of his chest that made it hard to breathe. But how could he fight them off, if he could barely stay afloat himself?

So he laid there and let the tidal waves of unwanted terrors mix in with the tendrils of his doubts, twisting and turning them to where he was blind to everything else but their own awful intentions. Then he laid beside Calum. Michael. And they went away. Michael's hands traced over the battlegrounds that littered Calum's soul, caressing every inch of skin and releasing soldiers of his own that washed off any remnants of poison left behind. His hands wiped away the insecurities running in trails down Calum's face. His hands traced over Calum's lips, through his hair, down his back, as if his hands could touch the galaxies that lay just beneath. It was easier to breathe again.