After I tucked Namine into bed, I had to run an errand. She knew this, so she told me to be safe after I kissed her good night.

When I got home, I checked in on her to see if she was sleeping. She was not.

She wasn’t staying up reading or playing, as she sometimes does. She was lying in bed, having not moved at all since I had tucked her in. She had her sleep mask on, but it was up on her forehead instead of over her eyes, which were open and looking toward her doorway. They brightened when she saw me.

I went into her room, sitting down next to her. She told me that she couldn’t sleep knowing I was gone. But now that I was home, she thought she could close her eyes and sleep. I gave her another hug and kiss, she pulled the mask down over her eyes, and I left her room.

I checked on her again just a few minutes later, and found her fast asleep.

Husband. Daddy. Programmer. Artist. I’m not an expert, I just play one in real life.