Nov. 29th, 2014

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It was bound to happen sooner or later.

Only through sheer force of will and plenty of experience taking on more than a usual man can handle does Combeferre get this far without collapsing. He had not begun the autumn with the intention of taking on so much, but slowly, the commitments had grown: medical school, teaching French, keeping up his ever-growing collection of flora, and now, tutoring Gavorche. Each new duty had seemed small on its own - small, and important, and meant for him, and so he had taken them on without thinking, not realizing the way his sleeping hours shrunk to nothing.

Combeferre had been weary and ragged at times, uncommunicative to his friends more than he would like, but he has always made time for Sybil. They have not seen each other as often as either of them would like, but when he joins her in her apartment, that time is for her and her alone. Tonight, he is even more tired than usual, and even more grateful for the thought of her company. The evening before had been full of exams, the day’s lessons with Gavroche and the French students dedicated more to keeping order than anything resembling education. And though he had greeted Sybil at her door with his usual warmth, he is already drifting by the time he sinks onto her couch.

In the few moments that it takes her to fetch wine from the kitchen, Combeferre has fallen fast asleep.

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Henri Combeferre

March 2017

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