Yawning, I hugged my pillow closer. “I’m going back to sleep when you leave. Just for an hour. Blaire Ash is stopping by at ten.”
“Is he?” He looked back at the mirror. “Why?”
“I’m changing things around. We’re going to turn the guest bedroom into a home office with a Murphy bed. That way, we still have room for guests and I have a place to work.”
Gideon smoothed his tie, then started buttoning his vest, stepping out into the bedroom. “We didn’t discuss that.”
“True.” I deliberately moved my leg so that the sheet slid off it. “I didn’t want you to argue about it.”
We’d originally agreed to turn the guest room into my room and connect it to the master bath to form a his-and-hers master suite. The layout would address Gideon’s parasomnia but also meant we’d have to sleep in separate rooms.
“We shouldn’t be sharing a bed,” he said quietly.
“I disagree.” Before he could press the point, I went on. “I tried to make the best of it, Gideon, but I’m not happy with the idea of being apart like that.”
He stood there silently, shoving his hands into the pockets of his slacks. “It’s not fair to make me choose between your happiness and your safety.”
“I know. But I’m not making you choose, I already decided. I’m aware that’s not fair, either, but the call had to be made and I made it.” I sat up and shoved the pillow behind me, scooting back so I could lean against the headboard.
“We made the call together. Then you apparently changed your mind without discussing it further. And flashing your tits at me—as stunning as they are—isn’t going to distract me.”
I narrowed my eyes at him. “If I wanted to distract you, I wouldn’t have brought the subject up in the first place.”
“Cancel the consult, Eva,” he said tightly. “We need to talk about this first.”
“The consult already happened. We had to cut it short because the cops came over, but Blaire’s already working on new designs. He’s bringing me some ideas today.”
Gideon’s hands came out of his pockets and his arms crossed. “So your happiness comes first and to hell with mine?”
“You’re not happy sharing a bed with me?”
A muscle in his jaw ticced. “Don’t jerk me around. You’re not taking into consideration what it would do to me if I hurt you.”
Abruptly my frustration turned to shame. “Gideon—”
“And you’re not thinking about what it would do to us,” he bit out. “I’ll let you experiment with a lot of things, Eva, but nothing that’s going to damage our relationship. If you want to fall asleep next to me, I’ll be there. If you want to wake up with me beside you, I can do that, too. But the hours in between when we’re both unconscious are too dangerous to gamble with on a fucking whim.”
I swallowed past a lump in my throat. I wanted to explain further, to tell him that I worried about the distance separate bedrooms would create. Not just physically but emotionally.
It hurt me to have him make love to me, then leave my bed. It took something beautiful and magical and turned it into something else. And if he stayed until I slept, then woke before me to return, he would suffer from lack of sleep. As tireless as he so often seemed, he was still human. He worked hard, worked out harder, and had to deal with tons of stress day after day. Being short on sleep couldn’t become routine.
But his fears for my safety weren’t going to be dismissed in a single conversation. We would have to go step-by-step.
“Okay,” I conceded. “Let’s agree to this: Blaire will drop off his concepts and we’ll look them over together later. In the meantime, we’ll agree not to knock down any walls in the guest room. I think that’s going too far, Gideon.”
“You didn’t think so before.”
“It’s a stopgap that may become permanent and we don’t want that. I mean, you don’t want that, do you? You want to work on sleeping together, right?”
He unfolded his arms and rounded the bed, taking a seat on the edge. Taking my hand in his, he lifted it to his lips. “Yes, I want that. It kills me that I can’t give you something so basic in our marriage. And knowing you’re unhappy about it … I’m sorry, angel. I can’t tell you how much.”
Leaning forward, I cupped his cheek. “We’ll work on it. I should’ve started by talking it out. Guess I pulled a Gideon on you—act first, explain later.”
His mouth twisted ruefully. “Touché.” He gave me a quick, hard kiss. “Watch out for Blaire. He wants you.”
I sat back. “He finds me attractive,” I corrected. “And he’s a natural-born flirt.”
Gideon’s eyes took on a dangerous gleam. “Has he been hitting on you?”
“Nothing unprofessional. If he crossed a line I’d fire him myself, but I think he probably finesses all his female clients. I bet it’s good for business.” I smiled. “He cooled his jets when I told him I was getting used to your stamina and didn’t feel like I needed a separate bed for sleep anymore.”