He's not sure what woke him. For a minute he wonders if it was Jonesy calling an alert; the creeping cold and silence of the room speak otherwise. The Dallas should be back at home base by now, docked at New London with most of her officers and crew, and Tommy, Chief Watson and the task force from the Mystic are in a different CIA safehouse a couple doors down. He guesses they'll be questioned first, the Russian officers next, while he waits for debrief, keeping an eye on the captain and the kid.
He sighs, thinks of getting up to find another blanket, maybe kicking the heat up a notch if sleep doesn't drag him down again first. Lets himself barely start to drift, before his eye is caught by the broad silhouette of Captain Ramius walking past his door in the dark. And then he hears the sound again: a quiet keening, almost choked, from the far side of the house.
He's on his feet, uniform jacket dragged on over his pyjamas, following his ears before he knows it. Ramius is there first, of course, reaching to turn on the table lamp near Ryan before he sits down at his side. His own jacket is drawn somewhat clumsily over his injured arm, still in its sling; he reaches out with the other to gently touch the sleeping man's shoulder.
"Ryan," he says quietly, and the kid starts awake, gasping. Ramius says his name again, softer; rubs his shoulder through the blankets till he calms. It's a gesture Bart's seen before, a quick protective rub of his wrist when he fell into a chair aboard the Red October after the battle, an instinctive response to the subtle distress call they both heard. Ryan looks up now as he did then, in bright exhaustion and awe.
"Captain," he whispers, voice cracked through with pain.
"You've been dreaming, Ryan," Ramius says, and the kid flushes red. "No, it's all right."
"I'm sorry," Ryan says, trying to sit up, but gasps again and falls back, gritting his teeth in silent frustration. Reaches up slowly to mop his brow with his sleeve. "Sir - I didn't mean to wake you."
"You didn't wake me," Ramius says, then gently, as he moves again, "Stay down."
Ryan obeys him, quietly choking back a helpless sob. Bart moves from the doorway to their side; Ramius nods to him, a welcome.
"Draw up a chair, Commander, please," he says, and Bart does, grabbing the first aid kit from the far wall on the way. "Ryan, you said you were not injured."
Ryan keeps his eyes shut, takes a breath, holds it a moment before speaking. "I'm not. It's an old - I was in a crash, sir, years ago. Broke my spine. I'm fine, I swear. It's just been a long few days."
"I'm sorry," says Ramius gently, and looks to Bart again, then back down. "Commander Mancuso is here too. You have medication, Ryan? A prescription?"
"Not since - left 'em on the Enterprise, sir."
"We'll find you something," Bart tells him, looking through the kit and thinking about making all of them a nice cup of tea. He adds to Ramius, softly, "You look rough yourself, sir."
Ramius gives him a quiet smile, but doesn't answer; doesn't need to. It's hard to sleep on dry land, sometimes, without comforting bustle a wall or two away. Bart imagines it's harder on unfamiliar ground, on leaving a previous life behind for good; harder while grieving. He watches him turn back to Ryan, stroke the hair at his temple, and sees the tender gesture again for what it is: a deepening fondness of a few days, and a gentleness born of years of holding the lives of a crew in his hands. He envies him for a moment his assurance, his ease of reaching out.
"Heat or cold, Ryan?" he offers gently, as much to Ramius as the kid, and Ramius cups Ryan's jaw to prompt an answer.
"Heat, please," he whispers, and blinks gratefully in Bart's direction when he walks over to hand him a hot pack. Ramius helps him place it at his back, nods at Bart's suggestion that they look for hot water bottles; Ryan weakly protests being covered with the blankets again.
"What d'ya mean, no?" Bart says, offering him two ibuprofen pills and a glass of water. Ramius takes the glass, helps Ryan down the pills. "C'mon, Ryan, it's freezing up here."
"They hurt, sir," Ryan says apologetically, and Ramius shakes his head and shrugs off his coat. Bart catches on and reaches down to help him, gentle with his injured shoulder, and they find themselves working together to tuck the coat securely around the kid. "Thank you," he adds quietly, and Ramius shushes him before Bart can.
"Hey, so y'all want some tea?" Bart says instead, and though Ryan's falls sooner, he's met by soft answering grins from them both. Ramius offers to help in the search for hot water bottles and warm drinks, and they leave Ryan for the moment, hoping he can get some sleep.
"He's a good kid," Bart finds himself saying for want of something to say, want of something to fill the space between them that's not unspoken sympathy. "I kinda misjudged him when he first showed up on my boat, but y'know, he was right about you after all."
"He was right about you too," Ramius says, and Bart pauses a step behind him, wonders for the first time what the two of them have been talking about the past few days. "I'd like to stay in touch with my new friends once this is over, Commander Mancuso, and Ryan is not the only one I've made. Where, do you think, might a newly-minted American citizen reach you?"
Bart waits for him to turn before answering; waits to see the look in his eyes, and dares to think that this time, he's reading him right.
"Call the Dallas, sir," he says. "And call me Bart when you do."