It’s something he can’t help her with, but something he desperately wants to ease for her. So he tries for silver lining: 

“So you won’t be surprised if it doesn’t.”   Sometimes that fact was discounted, but it was worth the absence of hollow reassurances, could keep a fall from swirling into a spiral. 

       “Will you be alright?”   The gravity of the situation is apparent in her comment, and he knows she’ll weather whatever happens, but he’s trying to reign his imagination in from the rampant; even though he’s doing pretty well, an answer wouldn’t hurt. 

A slow exhale slips past her lips when she withdraws, her hand still pressed flat to the base of his back. “Exactly,” Maria replies, the weariness in her voice apparent. She’s already tired, knowing how this will turn out, and it’s almost made worse by the fact that he’s here and she still has to go.

“I’ll be fine. Between the two of us it should be.. fine.” Fine, because it’ll be barely that. Fine because it’s not quite okay, but there’s likely not going to be any bloodshed or actual injuries. 


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