Cosette pushed her back into her- their- room an hour later, her arms full of get-well presents and cards. It turned out that she and Enjolras had been the worst off. Everyone else was reasonably fine. Gavroche and Dr Fauchevault were earnestly discussing the merits of a toy that Dr Fauchevault had bought for the kid at the giftshop. Grantaire was tormenting the nurses with demands for "just anything alchololic, jesus christ, or at least some morphine," and Ferre was already sending the boys out to get her homework (Cracked ribs are no excuse for slacking!). Marius and Cosette had apparently been waiting in the hall for the past twelve hours. She hadn't wanted to see them, the bleary memory of slurring a confession of love to Marius hovering in the background of her mind. But the minute she had been wheeled out, the two of them were at her knees, thanking her for bringing them back together. After being assured in every possible way that Eponine was no longer on death's door, Marius had been sent on errand duty and was currently packing up clothes and books for all those not likely to be discharged soon.

Back in her room, Enjolras was scribbling something on what appeared to be the back of his medical charts. Eponine bit back her complaints about much-needed rest and tossed him the newspaper. He shook it open to the middle and scanned it eagerly. Eponine had already skimmed through it, noting that their protest had made the second page before Joly had snatched it away, shrieking about concussions and over-stimulation. Eponine and Cosette watched with trepidation as Enjolras's brilliant blue eyes froze on the article. His face stiffened and he threw the paper onto the ground in disgust.

"Enjolras?" Cosette started to say, but Eponine reached out a hand to stop her. From her bed she could see the headline that had caught his eye: Anti-Terrorist Act Passes Congress By Storm.


"I can't believe how much stuff there is in the gift shops," Cosette said quietly, opening a pack of gummy candy. Eponine, her mouth already full of chocolate, nodded emphatically and opened a bottle of nail polish. She took Cosette's hand and began to paint her long oval nails.

Enjolras hadn't spoken since she'd given him the paper hours ago. He was pretending to be asleep, but no one really asleep lay that still. Eponine bit her lip in worry. "I wish Ferre was here," she whispered. Cosette nodded fervently.

At that exact moment the door burst open, revealing Fey pushing Ferre in a wheelchair. Cosette's mouth fell open. "Quick!" she cried. "Wish for a million dollars or something!"

"Turn on your TV right now!" Fey cried, ignoring Cosette.

"What?"

"Just do it!"

Eponine tossed Fey the remote. All the rest of the Amis had poured in hot on Fey's heels, and all that Eponine could think was This room is not big enough for this many men.

Fey managed to get the TV onto a news channel.

"What is going on?" Enjolras said, sitting up.

"Shh!" everyone else hissed.

Eponine looked at the TV. The president sat at his desk.

"Is never an easy decision," he was saying. "However, the enormous campaign by the people against this bill has opened my eyes to the injustice that could stem from its passage."

"Is he talking about-" she whispered.

"Yes!" Jehan squealed.

On the TV, the president pulled out a stamp and vetoed the bill. "The anti-Terrorist Act is no more," he said stiffly.

The room erupted into cheers. People were kissing, high-fiving, hugging. All the noise felt like someone was stabbing into her head but she didn't care, she was dancing around the room with the rest of them, spun around by Fey, then tossed over to Feuilly, and then Bahorel scooped her up and whirled her around and when she finally stopped spinning she found herself face to face with Enjolras. She just looked at him for a moment, and then she wrapped her arms around his waist and buried her head in his chest. "Good job," she whispered.

"Thanks," he murmured back.

She pulled back to see that all of the others had stopped their celebrations to stare at them. Fey raised his eyebrows mischievous and Eponine shot him a death glare. What? she mouthed grumpily.

Fey just smirked back, and Eponine settled back into her bed, feeling rather unsettled until Bosseut and Bahorel started belting some old drinking song.