It was well in the am before they got back to the hotel. Once inside Amara flopped onto the nearest bed. Russel blushed, wondering if she expected him to join her when Katana ran herself into his shins with a plaintive cry. Russel bent down to lift the whining ball of fur. The cat batted his face for his trouble before jumping back to the floor. At which point she butted his shins again and started purring.
“Bit of a jealous type, that cat.”
Jane had watched the whole display from the chair at the desk before commenting. Russel looked her way with a wry grin. And blinked as he looked around the room.
It was just a two bed hotel room. No presidential, executive or any other kind of suite. They had left a bodyguard at the door when they came in, but that was on the other side of the door. The only indication Jane and Amara might be more than a couple of middle-class ladies on a trip was Amara’s dress. Which only said she’d been clubbing, really.
Russel absent-mindedly reached to pick up Katana once more. The cat was still annoyed, dodging and making her way to Jane’s lap where she curled up staring back at him. Jane, managing to look professional in her pajamas smiled, actually smiled in his direction. She tilted her head to encompass the room.
“Not what you expected?”
Russel shook his head, still expecting to find the door that led to the massive hot tub, or the giant deck or the second floor or… something.
“Don’t worry, Amara appreciates her luxuries. We both knew certain stops wouldn’t leave time for more than sleep. As it is we’re on the bus in five hours, so you should probably try to sleep yourself.”
“Okay.” He looked at the beds, and Amara who by all appearances was already out on the one, and back to Jane. “Uh, where?”
“Well you aren’t sharing with me.”
He hit the bathroom first, where he found a small stack in the corner with his name on a sticky note on top. Under that was a pair of sweatpants which he gratefully changed into. Below them, resting on top of what he guessed were clothes for tomorrow was a toothbrush and generic toothpaste tube in a small bag. When on Earth had Jane found time to arrange that? And why didn’t she bother getting me my own room?
He barely finished brushing when the exhaustion caught up with him. When he came back out Jane had gone to bed, Katana’s eyes reflecting the bathroom light from where she sat curled up at Jane’s feet.
Russel looked at the near bed, where Amara had curled into a ball more or less in the middle. Someone had freed the comforter to drape it over her. He felt his face heat, though too tired to hesitate long as he slipped in the side at Amara’s back. I’m never gonna sleep like this. He pulled the loose end of the comforter carefully over himself. He was already drifting off in spite of himself when Katana hopped up on his hip, before walking up to his shoulder and finally settling behind his head between him and Amara. Silly cat. Russel’s thoughts went no further before sleep took over.
How does she possibly have the energy for this? The week following that first concert went much the same as the one day. They boarded a bus in the morning, rode for most of the day or through the night. Amara spent a lot of that time sleeping and Russel didn’t find it as hard as he expected to do the same. Katana helped by being obnoxious whenever the two of them were too close by her reckoning.
On reaching the venue of the day, Russel would be escorted to the green room. Amara would swing through right before and halfway through her performance with apologies and kisses. By the third stop, Russel risked politely asking not to attend the club after-party. Amara had looked down but not surprised. He surprised both of them when he found himself wanting to go along again at the next city.