"Oh, God, it's so late..."

You groan, resting your head against the post of Jaden's bed. You can barely keep your eyes open, and the first stirrings of a headache are pricking into your temples. "I didn't even realize..."

Jaden glances up, shuffling the cards in his hands back into a neat pile and setting them on the floor next to him. "What time is it?"

You shut your eyes, lightly dropping your phone to the floor. "...Two thirty," you say, and immediately regret it. Just saying the time out loud makes you feel like you've been run over by a bus.

"What?" Jaden reacts with instant disbelief. "But you came over at, like, seven... Kenzan and Sho aren't even back yet! How can it be that late?"

"They're staying the night in Yellow, remember?" you prompt him tiredly, rubbing at your bleary eyes. "Uggh... I don't want to walk all the way back over there..."

You frown, hands still resting over your eyes. You really, really don't... it's dark, and it's so far. You hate walking in the dark. And it's getting so cold at night.

"You can just sleep here," Jaden says. You hear a clasp come undone and the sound of him tucking his cards into his deck box. "There's no reason to make the trek all the way over there. Sho's bed is free, I'm sure he won't mind."

You peel your hands away from your face. Jaden continues picking up some of his cards strewn across the floor, smiling lightly to himself, as if he hasn't given his offer a second thought.

"Ah... huh?"

"Oh, or Kenzan's is fine, too," Jaden says, looking back up at you. "I don't know if you like top bunk or bottom bunk better! Take whichever one you want."

"I... no, I can't," you say, shaking your head. You hold your hands up in front of you. "I... wouldn't feel right about that..."

"Don't worry about it!" Jaden beams. He leans over closer to you, making you flinch. He reaches over your lap and snatches an ultra rare Mirror Force from the stack of pulls beside you. "Make sure you sleeve this, you can borrow one of mine-"

"Jaden!" you say firmly. He stops, and looks at you. "I... don't want to sleep in their beds without them knowing, it... just feels weird..."

He's quiet for a minute, observing you. "You wanna sleep in my bed?"



"Huh?" you hear yourself say.

He stands up, and you watch him helplessly as he approaches where you're sitting, leaning against his bed. You scoot away in a daze as he grabs the binders and empty pages from the covers, flattening the fabric with one hand. "I'm saying it's okay, so, it should be fine, right?" he says. "We don't have class tomorrow, so you won't have to get up early. And I don't mind - all the beds are the same to me! I can sleep anywhere."

You try to process what he's saying. When you speak, your voice sounds very quiet. "Um... so I could - take your bed, and you'd..."

"I'll just take the top!" Jaden says. He grins. "Manjoume never wants to switch with me. Since nobody else is here, he can't stop me."

Right... right, of course. You shake your head, feeling your cheeks flush. When he'd said that...

'Wanna sleep in my bed?'

Of course he didn't mean... sharing it, that would be...


You feel like you're floating. You help Jaden finish cleaning up, but you barely remember doing it. You find yourself brushing your teeth in the shoddy, creaky Slifer bathroom, staring at yourself in the mirror, and when you come back to Jaden's room, he's changed into a gray set of sweats with navy stripes. Your heart pangs when you see him. You can barely make eye contact.

"Do you wanna borrow something?" he asks. "Sleeping in your uniform won't be very comfortable."

You flush, curling your hands in the fabric of your jacket and pulling it closed. "N-No, that's fine," you mumble. "I'll just... take off m-my jacket..."

"Okay, sounds good!" Jaden smiles, and you feel your heart skip another beat. "Go ahead and get in bed so I can turn off the light."

You hold your breath as you gently pull back the covers of Jaden's bunk. They're thin, but soft. You try to ignore how hard your heart is beating as you slip into bed - his bed, oh my god. You're sleeping in his bed...

Jaden flicks the lights off. You fall silent, staring up into darkness. You hear him climb up the ladder, the bunk above you squeaking dangerously, as if it's going to collapse on you any second. You clutch at the covers, almost scared for a moment.
"Night!" Jaden bids you, in a hushed but still bright voice.

"G-Good night..." you whisper back to him, unsure if he even heard you.

You can't sleep. You can't hope to sleep.

Jaden's out in a matter of minutes. You hear his breathing, steady and deep, from above you.

His bed is so warm. It's so cozy. You can't help but focus on that fact.

His bed. He sleeps here every single night, and now you're...

You turn fitfully. You can't get comfortable. When you sleep in your own bed, you usually hug your pillow to help you relax.



You arms seem to shake a little bit as you tug down one pillow, slowly wrapping your arms around it. Your face feels like it's burning as you slowly let your cheek rest against it.

It's soft. And... it smells nice.

You slowly squeeze your eyes shut. You finally fade out a few minutes later, listening to Jaden's soft breathing, letting the gentle rhythm lull you off to sleep.

back to words
back to shrine