Root twitches and moans in her sleep, waking Shaw immediately, sitting up in a smooth movement and scanning the area, just in case. The hotel room is small, and on the other side of the door, in the adjoining room she can hear the snuffling breathing of Reese and Harold sleeping, wrapped around each other. It’s cute how they pretend they’re not a thing, not that Shaw would ever tell them that. She’s pretty sure it’s only because Harold doesn’t want Root to tease him. No one teases Shaw because they know she would shoot them. Except Root, because she's a little shit, but Shaw kind of likes it, so whatever. Satisfied that she’s the only dangerous thing in the room, she slips her knife back under the pillow and grimaces as she looks down at the woman next to her.
Moonlight is slicing across the bed, highlighting the bumps of Root’s spine through the light tshirt she’s wearing. Her hands are clenched tightly into the sheets, and there’s a sheen of sweat on her brow as she mumbles words Shaw can’t make out. With a sigh, Shaw shuffles over a little, resting her hand on the small of Root’s back and rubbing gentle circles. The hacker twitches and makes a little whining noise, and Shaw rolls her eyes. It’s difficult to slide her arm under Root’s pillow without waking her, but she’s used to it by now, and Root doesn’t wake, still caught in the throes of whatever nightmare has decided to pick on her this evening. Shaw doesn’t dream, or doesn’t remember very often, and it's hard for her to understand how something not real could be so upsetting. But Root is always a bitch to deal with after a rough night, and Shaw would prefer to hold her (and never, even internally refer to it as cuddling) so they both get a decent night’s sleep than deal with the grouching the next day.
She manhandles Root gently until her head is pillowed on Shaw’s shoulder, one leg slung over the assassin’s hips, and pets her until she settles, which doesn’t take long. Shaw runs a little hotter than the average person, but Root is always cold when she sleeps, the nightmares are worse when she’s chilled. A Hot Shaw Bottle, as she embarrassingly refers to it, is the best cure. Shaw scowls just thinking about that stupid name, but never stops rubbing her back gently, breathing in sharply as Root’s thigh presses between her legs. Now is not the time. Shaw made the mistake of waking Root up once, trying to turn things sexual, and Root was pissed off with her for days. Apparently being woken from a horrible nightmare is not sexy, regardless of whether Shaw is horny from the contact. This, touching without sex is new to Shaw, and unfamiliar, but she’s trying to map out the territory of what is and isn’t okay. She’s trying to listen to Root and learn from her. Even if she would never, ever admit it.
It takes a while for Shaw to slip back into sleep, and when she wakes, they’re face to face, breathing each other’s air. Root’s hand is rhythmically squeezing her butt, and when she opens her eyes, the hacker is looking right at her from way too close. The scowl Shaw’s face twists into is as natural as breathing, but Root just gives a breathy snicker. “You have such a nice ass. So squishable,” which just makes it worse. She detangles herself and stares at the ceiling, wondering if it would be appropriate to slide her hands into her sleep shorts. She knows she can come so quietly that the boys would never hear her, but Root’s a screamer and apparently it’s not fair if only Shaw gets off. Whatever.
But then Root slides closer, rubbing a thumb over her nipple and looks up at her through dark eyelashes. “Thanks.” She means for cuddling, but she knows that word is not welcome in their bedroom, and Shaw grunts in acceptance. It turns into a squeak as Root cups her through her boxers and grins at her. Oh, so if it’s Root’s idea, it’s fine? The last thought Shaw has before all she can think about is Root propped over her, her hands and mouth and the smell of her, is ‘God, relationships are confusing’. The boys totally hear her, because she’s not as stealthy as she thinks she is, and Root’s an exhibitionist who takes great pleasure in making Shaw give up her stoic silence. Shaw definitely doesn’t blush when they go for pancakes and Reese asks them how they slept with a smirk so wide she wants to punch it right off his face. But Root squeezes her leg under the table and pours extra syrup on Shaw’s plate, which helps.