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Lily pulled the down comforter over her head. She would not get up. No matter what sounds she thought she heard tonight. No matter when the alarm clock went off in the morning. No, this would be the best night of sleep she had ever gotten. The pillow was perfect. The comforter was freshly cleaned and smelled of lavender.

She had valerian under the pillow. She had her meditation tape set to go on in three hours. The crashing waves of the white noise machine were on. She took deep breaths and tried to sink into the mattress.

The little whimper that escaped as her back loosened reminded her how much tension she’d been carrying. She had the day off tomorrow. She didn’t have to do anything.

She drifted towards sleep.

The whining moans didn’t puncture the bubble of sound and safety she’d created for herself. She couldn’t smell the coppery tang from the other room. She couldn’t even hear the sounds of chains. She smiled.

Finally, a good night’s sleep.

The other side of the bed dipped. “Sweetie?” a soft voice said. “Are you asleep?”

Yes, she thought. I am asleep, go away.

He sighed. “I added gags. They should be quiet tonight.” He patted her hip. “Sleep well.” Then, he laid down.

She took deep breaths. Focus. Sleep, Lily, she told herself.

Sleep.

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