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Just a hug

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She doesn’t say a word as she slips into the bed beside him. He looks up and smiles, the sort of half asleep twitch of the mouth before returning to neutral. The breeze is warm through the open door out to the verandah and he only has the thin sheet up to his waist. Bruises on his chest have shifted from black and blue to a sickly yellow, a reminder of how much better he was compared to what he had been.


No words have to be spoken as he shifts onto his side, drawing her arm around his middle and the rest of her automatically tucks into his back. Kissing the back of his neck, she sighs, the knowledge of how close it was still in her might as she unconsciously holds him tighter.


“Gently Pen,” He whispers, tilting his head back in a way she knows he shouldn’t after the damage to his neck muscles.


Still, she’ll make the most of having the chance to kiss him. Maybe the angle is awkward, maybe she's trying to avoid the bruise across his shoulder and collarbone. But it's still perfect for her.


He pulls away first with a wince, twisting his head stiffly before settling back into her. His words are soft as he sighs, “I love you.”


Leaning forward she kisses the back of his shoulder, they’ve said the words more in the last few weeks than she had ever anticipated. Yet she wouldn’t change it for the world.


“Can I do anything?” She asked, worrying he was hurting still.


“Just this.” He smiled softly, “This is all I need right now.”


Soothing her thumb across the back of his hand that held hers, she smiled softly. If cuddles were what he needed, it was what she would do.