christmas day 12∙25∙2014
She could hear him call her name just fine, even with her eyes closed darkening everything around them the same way the city looked without all of the snow falling. She didn't say anything though, exhaling deeply once more until she shrugged everything he had just witnessed off. "Yeah, yeah, I'm fine- I'm great. I promise." Her concerned, plain appearance diminished and she was back to herself as if nothing had changed and she was back holding her lips against his, expect this time, he was the one keeping the kisses soft and quick. He was worried about her and could sense something wasn't adding up, something could actually be wrong.

The palm of his hand took her cheek into it, his eyes tracing the soft shape of hers. This would have been another stroke of luck when it came to unexpected romantic moments, but this time it was anything but, Ezra was trying to read her to see if she was actually okay or not. "Are you sure?" His head dipped, his gaze woven with serious undertones. In the midst of feeling hot underneath her coat all of a sudden, she nodded overly enthusiastically. "Don't be like that, weren't we having fun? I told you I'm solid. I'm good."

She wasn't though, that was the thing, and Ezra could see it. he could see it in the way her face flushed red from every inch to her forehead down to her jaw, far from the natural pigments that surfaced. He had seen her just after she had come from the Y before, her rosacea flared up on her cheeks and her chin in splotchy patches that would appear whenever she was stressed or her blood pressure was high, though this was much worse, she was burning up.

It was becoming increasingly difficult to think straight with everything in her mind glazed over from the pot, numbing her senses. Rose couldn't tell but Ezra was reacting just fine, still just as eager and hungry to pull away the buttons from his own coat, but worry set in, leaving him bundled upInterrupting her, her droned her out with, "no, no, not that," his hand cupping her face, grazing a finger or two down her cheek. "It's not that, Rose, it's just that --," he paused to try and collect his words without directly telling her that she looked like she could vomit at any given moment. "It's just that I think heading back is smart." Feeling worse and worse and more nauseous by the second, she stared at him without blinking for what felt like a long period of time but in retrospect was only seconds or so. Her mouth coated with a film, the calm before the storm, trying to swallow it back down was her gut instinct they needed to go, he was right.

Ezra tried to offer to carry her, the gentleman that he was. At first she resisted, the women that she was, buttoning up her coat again despite feeling like she was on fire. "Are you hot? Are you sure it's not just me?" Which sounded like such a gross line to fish for compliments. She could barely smile as she said it, although Ezra was no stranger to a cheeky grin in this situation. Walking was the only thing keeping her mind at ease, if you could even say that. The dizzy spells came and went. Luckily they were only a few minor blocks to her apartment before she held her hand out and grabbed at the side of his jacket. In a sad, sad condensed voice, she mumbled, "Turn your head, please, I'm so sorry, this is not like me." And she puked, she puked all over the side of the street, noises of pain and sheer embarrassment came as she did. Ezra turned to her and put his hand on her back, grabbing pieces of her hair into a makeshift ponytail so that she wouldn't end up with vomit all in her hair. In soothing motions, he rubbed her back, but she didn't care, she already felt mortified that she was doing this in front of him.

When the stream of disgusting liquid stop, she remained hunched over, her hands on her knees, panting. "I'm so sorry," she reiterated again, repeating it at least twelve more times before they even got to her door. Rose didn't throw up again until they were in her apartment. All the lights were still on, Max and George and two others were still there, all of the women must have left. Max was stretched out on a chair in an uncomfortable position while George was in the guest room. Rose, unable to do anything but hightail it down the hallway, shot straight for her bed in her clothes and boots, covered in snow, smelling like terror.

"You need to get these off," Ezra said, hovering over the bed, tugging at her coat. Worn out, exhausted, she let him help her, saying nothing. She was so close to passing out he felt wrong staying in the bed with her, neither of them had a sleepover with each other before, so he didn't know the protocol, but he stayed anyway, just to be sure that she was okay. He also covered George and Max and the others with blankets, a courteous, dad move they all appreciated come morning. Ezra took blankets off the couch and slept on the floor. Rose would have protested, but it was probably a safe bet since she ended up with a small puddle of puke on the other pillow, the pillow that would have been where Ezra's head was.