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Waiting behind me, she needs me.

Not me, I guess, but a person, at least, to offer their presence and so disrupt that persistent darting of the mind to its more horrifying regions; to nagging needs and endless questions that are without answer.

She herself knows she is not sick, and yet every minute or so she coughs while she reads, insisting on finishing this one chapter.

Then, she will pull up her covers and sleep, no longer thinking of poisons, murderers, or uncanny creatures (and other various superstitions).

That is, as long as I am present, as a person, and lay unmoving beside her in the dark.

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