Part 3 [chapter 7]- I'm Gonna Hold You

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Orpheus and Eurydice met Calliope and Hermes halfway at the bar. Eurydice had to explain again that the family downstairs was going to wake in a few hours, with many questions and concerns.

There were a lot of concerns and questions for Eurydice too. She tried her best to answer them without letting her eyes droop. Concealing her exhaustion, because she really doesn't know where she was going to sleep. She can't go downstairs again, she'll wake up the family with the creaking steps and voices from upstairs. She could sleep on Hermes couch but she isn't sure how the man himself would feel about that. And that leaves Orpheus, she doesn't know where their relationship falls at the moment. Not yet comfortable to share a bed again. They need to mend together, talk more, understand what caused their misguidings.

But it felt as if she hadn't slept in two hundred years.

So when Hermes pulled aside Orpheus and Calliope to speak without her, she let her head rest on the counter for a brief second.

The world went dark after that.

***

For a moment, it was as if this was all one terrible nightmare. That she never left for Hadestown. That that storm never rolled in. That Orpheus never turned around. She was back in bed, warm and cozy and waiting for the sun to wake her up.

But the smell of grease and coal smoke on herself snapped her out of this fantasy.

She sat up suddenly, her breath hitching high in her throat.

"You're not how I imagined you would be." a voice said.

Eurydice's panicked eyes scanned the room and landed on Calliope, sitting at the kitchen table. Eurydice's eyes took everything, her first thought: I'm home.

She lied in her old bed, under her old covers. She looked out on the house, with it's ticking clock and ratty red couch. Worn wood floors. Windows with floral curtains.

How could she ever leave this behind?

"Are you going to answer me?"

"Why did they bring me back here?"

She sighed, standing from her seat and walking in a direct path to Eurydice. She grabbed her chin roughly, pulling her forward. Eurydice was too shocked to pull away for a second or two but roughly shoved her away after regaining her fire.

"don't touch me!"

She crossed her arms over her ribcage, luminous blue eyes watching the younger girls jerky movements with interest.

"You're pretty, to be sure. Maybe that's why he fell in love with you?" she wondered aloud.

Anger flared up in Eurydice's chest, a fire being stoked every moment. "Do you really think your son is that shallow? Gods!"

"Then why do you think he loved you?"

Eurydice swallowed. "Ask him yourself."

"I have. He never gives me a straight answer. I want to know, why do you think he loved you?"

Eurydice pushed the blankets off of her legs, stepping onto the cold floor and standing. Her first instinct was to drop to the floor and kiss its boards, cry until the wood rotted. But she didn't, she walked to the mirror by the wall and looked at herself. Different. Odd.

She'd been stripped of her Hadestown clothes, she instead wore a long shirt that must be Orpheus'.

"Who changed me?"

"I did. Orpheus wasn't sure how comfortable either of you would be with him..." she trailed off.

Eurydice nodded. "Thank you." she reached up and brushed to fingers across her cheek, behind her ear, and tracing a curl down to her shoulder.

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