After Livvy’s death, Ty kept to his room for weeks on end, paralyzed by grief. Of course, it was the room he’d shared with her, but at least he could feel she was there with him in spirit. Julian and Kit were the only ones he allowed in the room; they were the two people he trusted most outside of his twin.

Livvy. What happened at the council meeting in Idris was a hazy blur. But when she was hurt, he could feel it. It was a sharp pain repeatedly stabbing his heart. He had a hard time believing she was dead. Maybe that was because he couldn’t stop reliving what happened. It played over and over like a movie in his head. Not just a movie, a nightmare. 

He lay on his bed, aching with exhaustion; he hadn’t been able to sleep well at all. To his right, Livvy’s bed remained unmade; no one could bear to touch anything of hers. It was as if she’d be coming back to clean up her side of the room.  But he knew she wouldn’t be. Even though they were never able to become parabatai, Ty felt like part of himself, his other half, was missing now that she was gone.
He closed his eyes, hoping to relax and get a good night sleep for once, when he heard a knock at the door.

“Ty? Can I come in?”

“I guess.”

Kit elbowed the door open, carrying an assortment of snacks.  “Thought you might be hungry,” he said. “Do you mind if I sit on the bed?”

“Thanks for coming to check on me,” Ty said, sitting up. “You can sit with me. I could use the company.”  Kit smiled and handed Ty a bag of chips, which Ty promptly ripped open.

“How are you?”

Ty, his mouth full of chips, politely swallowed before answering. “I – I really don’t know how to describe it. I can’t …” he started shaking uncontrollably, his hands searching for something solid to grasp. “Can you hold me like you did on the roof?”

“I’m sorry Ty. I didn’t mean to upset you,” Kit said, wrapping his arms around Tiberius. He looked so worn out. Kit couldn’t imagine what he must be going through right now. But he knew Ty needed someone, so that’s what he was there for.

“It’s okay. I know you didn’t mean it,” Ty stammered. “I’m glad you’re here. I’m glad you stayed with us.”

Kit was glad he decided to stay too. It was nice to feel wanted and loved. His dad had always left him to his own devices. And it seemed Ty cared for him as much as he cared for Ty.

Ty felt calmer. More calm than he had been in weeks. He craned his neck upward and kissed Kit’s cheek.  Surprised, Kit responded with a kiss on Ty’s lips. He didn’t know what was happening, but it felt … good.

Until he remembered something.

“Wait – what if we want to be parabatai?”

“Oh, yeah, that,” Ty said. “I was thinking about it too. But all I know right now is I need you.” He laid back on his pillows and clutched Kit’s shirt, kissing him as if he were the last person on Earth.

Kit felt the heat. Maybe this was because he had a special connection with Ty. He didn’t mind exploring it; they need each other.

Almost as soon as it had started, it was over. They lay next to each other on the bed, adrenaline still pumping. It was exhilarating. Ty rolled over to face Kit. “Can you stay here tonight?”

“Of course,” Kit said. “I’m not going anywhere.”

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