Matt left the jail with a spring in his step and a boyish grin pasted on his face, feeling as if a terrible weight had been lifted off his shoulders when he'd found Kitty alive and on the mend after chasing down Jake Bayloe. Entering Delmonico's as he mulled over ways to surprise her with the reward money, he almost broke out into a silly song until the busy restaurant atmosphere brought him back to himself and he hastily ordered a meal for two. Then he packed everything into a large basket and sped back to Doc's office.
"I brought us some dinner, Doc." he stated, running his eyes across the woman he loved, "How is she?"
"Asleep now." Doc smiled, leaving the letter he was writing to fill their cups with coffee and help the Marshal lay out the meal, "But she's been a lot quieter since you got back."
"Good!" Matt looked relieved, "I like a nice quiet town."
"I should have known it was you…" Kitty mumbled sleepily as the men settled into eating, her blue eyes trying to focus after waking, "when I smelled steaks."
"Well there," Matt couldn't resist going to her, "Doc tells me you've been behaving yourself this afternoon."
"Oh, I have." she agreed, the love in her eyes matching his, "He was hard enough on me. I don't have it in me to take both of you on right now."
"Careful, Kitty." Doc left his food too, "I might keep you here until you do. Then I'll know you're completely healed."
"You know, Doc." Matt grinned wickedly, "I think you might be onto something there."
Kitty groaned in response and did her best to scrunch up under the thick blanket, "Someone just shoot me again and get it over with!"
"Take it easy, Kitty." Doc laid a hand on her arm, "I don't want you moving around too much yet."
"Kit…" Matt laid a quick hand on her hip, "You do what Doc says."
She groaned again and rolled her eyes before closing them, as if obediently going to sleep.
"Come on, Matt," Doc waved him back to the table, "Sleep is the best thing for her right now." Taking a long swig of coffee, he added, "You probably have rounds yet to do too."
"You're looking kinda tired there too, Doc." Matt watched him take a second long pull then get up for a refill.
"Well, I've been busy." Doc admitted, shrugging, "taking care of a wonderful lady so the law won't come around later claiming I didn't do my job."
"I appreciate it, Doc." the Marshal chuckled, "I really do. She weighed on me a lot out there."
"I know she did."
"Say, Doc..." Matt asked, "Why don't I take the first watch tonight? Let you get a little more sleep?"
"What about your rounds? You must be tired too. You've been riding hard."
Matt shook his head, "I'll never be too tired to look after her. As for my rounds, I'm easy enough to find if something happens. Or I can walk around later. Or, even better, Chester can handle it tonight."
"You sure you can handle someone as ornery as she is?" Doc asked, nodding at Kitty when he noticed her watching them, "I mean, she's been good this afternoon and all, but I don't count on that to last."
Matt chuckled, turning loving eyes on her again, "Oh, I've had some experience with a particular woman who can be pretty ornery when she wants too."
"I pity you." Doc shook his head sadly.
"And you know, Doc," the Marshal turned back to give him a pointed look, "when I'm dealing with somebody that ornery, I sleep with one eye open."
"Good, good." Doc nodded, "Well, Matt, you're hired...for free, of course." Suddenly he stood up, heading for his other room, "Excuse me. I'll be right back."
Matt instantly returned to Kitty's side; he took her hand and squeezed it gently, "Of course, with you...I think I'll have to keep both eyes open so neither one will miss out on how beautiful you are."