The door opens and Five comes around to my side of the bed. We have recently purchased a new mattress, which rises Princess-and-the-Pea-like from the floor. It didn't seem so fluffy in the showroom, or we would have chosen one we can actually sit on while we put on our shoes. Despite the fact that I need a step-stool to gain access, Five scrambles up and shimmies his skinny body under the covers with ease. I throw my arm over him and pull him close.
"Mom, what day is it?" he asks.
"Sunday," I mumble.
"Arrgghh! That means I have Sunday school! Why can't I just have two days off like everyone else? It's really unfair, Mom, that I don't get two days off to rest. Didn't God say that Sunday was a day of rest?"
The Captain snorts from his under-occupied side of the bed.
"It's your last day of Sunday school, Five."
"So I'm making my communion?"
"Not this week; but it's your last day of class."
"Oh, okay. What time is it?" He rolls over to check the clock. "It's 7:28. No, it's 7:29. Do we have doughnuts for breakfast?"
"No, we have waffles." As I gain consciousness, a dull throb gains traction behind my eyes. I ask the Captain to let the dog out.
"No doughnuts? But it's Sunday. And why don't we ever get Dunkin' Donuts anymore?"
"Because they're expensive. The doughnuts that Nonni bought are fine."
"So we have Nonni's doughnuts?"
"No. They got eaten."
"Mom! That's so annoying."
My iPhone alarm rings, and Five hands it to me. I roll over onto my back, because the throb has become a pounding in my sinuses. I hope for a positional cure, or the removal of any contributing factors. "Yes. It's also annoying when you yell at me. My head hurts."
"Oh." The contributing factor props himself up on his elbow and looks at my face. "Do you want me to rub it? Remember that time I rubbed your neck and it helped? I haven't had much experience rubbing heads, but I could try."
"Yes, thank you, that would be very kind."
I lay with my eyes closed. He places the heel of his small hand near the bridge of my nose and presses down, kneading the space between my eyes. "Is that comforting?" he asks.
It is neither gentle nor palliative, but his hand is cool, and he wants to comfort me.
"Yes," I answer. The throbbing keeps time as he pats my head a little for good measure. "Thank you, dear. Go eat your waffles."
"Okay. You feel better?"
"I do. But could you ask Dad to bring me some Advil?"
Five slides out of the bed, runs down the hall, and returns in a moment clutching a small cup of water and some pills. "Sit up," he says. I swallow the pills and lay back down."I'll put the cup here, just in case you need more water." He places it on my nightstand and jogs away. The room is quiet. I recall his hand upon my forehead, and am comforted.