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Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project 
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Honorable Intentions wrote:
“Doing quite well, can't complain.” Miles sniffed at the drink and looked over at the rodent staring at him with his paws clasped together. His desk comically large in comparison.
"RODENT?"

"RODENT?"

"RODENT?"

The skinny little ferret looks at you as fierce as such a small animal can look. His tail twitches in shock.

"Ferrets (and weasels, minks, martens, otters, and related species) are not rodents."

He dances side to side in agitation.

"Not anything like rodents."

Calms himself, just a bit, and tries to look serious. He's not built for looking serious, but he tries.

"Mustelid. Learn that word. It means mouse-eater or mouse-hunter. If you want a casual term, try weasel. Not, oh my lord, not rodent!"

He wanders off, huffing and fussing. "Rodent." he says to himself, "What a world. What a world."

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Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:45 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Ah I see your point my mustelid friend, I apologize for the mix up and shall correct it right away!

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At the end of the day I often think about what I have done for the world. What I have changed, perhaps made better or worse. I then sit at a computer for hours and look at pictures of cats.

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Lucky Abbot: S-9 P-6 E-7 C-6 I-7 A-4 L-3


Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:32 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
PLEASE DON'T SCARE ME LIKE THIS NEVER EVER! *sigh* Good to know you're still on this, I think I never was so happy for being fooled before XD

I loved the beginning, reminds me a lot to skyrim (GAH! I want to play it! TT_TT)
And now seems that Peanut and Grape would become some type of undercover agents, yeah I can see them being like Mr. & Mrs. Smith (though they were hitmen, but you know what I mean XD). Definitely Mr. & Mrs. Sandwich (I just wanted to say it).
But the icing on the cake was undoubtedly the totally unexpected invitation for a date from Jon, and Snow saying yes so calmly! :shock: And even her seems to doubt about her feelings. (this is getting good, this is getting really good 8-) )

Keep doing this epic work man, I'll be waiting no matter what :D

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Sat Apr 06, 2013 8:21 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Here's the update many have been waiting for, and it was getting kind of large. I decided I would divide it into two parts, this first part would be this weeks update, and the next will come out soon. Thanks again everyone for the submissions and I hope I did your characters justice. The second part should introduce the minor characters, but for now enjoy.


Housepets: Pet Project

7. Chance Meetings

He could not believe what he was seeing, it was the stuff of dreams. It was about as large as two standard sports utility vehicles, maybe even a little longer. Its “nose” came to a narrow, aerodynamic point with two large wings jutting from the sides. Decorating the body were two decals that read “Milton Air,” the silhouette of a ferret was stenciled in beneath the bold blue and yellow text of the logo. Peanut felt his jaw sag a little for a moment, until a firm paw grabbed his muzzle and pressed upwards.

“Calm down Peanut, we haven't even boarded yet...” said Grape, she pulled her hand away and wiped it on her thigh, “and you're already drooling.”

“I've never seen one of these things up close before hon.” Said Peanut. He reached out and laid his paw on it. “It's smaller than I thought it would be. I heard you can't even feel these things move when you're on board. And they have a faucet that dispenses drinks next to the seats!”

“Seems a little excessive don't you think?” Grape looked up and down the plane. Her tail swayed, driven by curiosity and anxiety.

“Excessive sure, but it's not my money they're spending.” Peanut paced around the plane over and over again. Trying to take it in all of its majesty. His tail wagging like he had just witnessed the birth of second Christmas. It even smelled like fun.

“What are you doing here?”

Grape's neck nearly snapped she had turned so hard. Her claws shot out and her legs sent her jumping the opposite direction. Her hackles raised in a very threatening manner. Peanut, however, was still admiring the plane. A man of regular height and stature was standing before her. Though at regular height and stature for a human, he towered above her. His eyes were hidden behind a pair of thick aviator sunglasses, a pilots cap rested atop his head. He looked suited up and ready to fly. Grape took one look at his pursed lips and folded arms. This man was not in a good mood.

“We're getting ready to leave.” Grape regained composure and picked up her bags.

“I'm sorry but you are at the wrong plane.” The pilot said. “This is for special guests only, not for yourselves.”

"What constitutes special?” Grape looked back at the deluxe jet.

“None of your business.” The Pilot grumbled. He muttered something under his breath about taking orders from ferrets, though Grape could not tell exactly what he was saying. Perhaps it was better that way.

“Then where do we go?” Said Grape, she could feel her patience waning.

“Over on that side of the air field, now get away from here, I'm still relishing what little break I have.” The pilot replied, gesturing across the landing strip with his thumb. Grape turned and saw another plane in the distance. It was a little larger, albeit clunkier looking compared to the deluxe ride the pilot was now entering.

“Thanks, I guess.” Grape grabbed Peanut's paw and dragged him away from the plane. “Come on, we don't want to be late hon.”

“Can I at least see the inside?” Peanut pouted a little. Grape shook her head and tugged her husband along harder.

“What part of 'get away' do you not understand? Maybe I wasn't clear, get out of my face, it's bad enough I have to ferry around a bunch of nasty little rodents in their private planes without a bunch of whiners like you sticking your noses in places they don't belong.”

Peanut raised his finger, his mouth opened to correct the man. Ferrets were in fact not rodents. Rather they were Mustelids. Having been guilty of such confusion himself one point in his life, he felt obligated to correct the man should the mistake ever arise. Before he could say anything, Grape snagged him and pulled him along again. Putting all of her strength in dragging along her husband. His ears fell and his tail lowered. Peanut gave in and began to walk alongside the lavender colored cat. They began their long journey to their proper plane. Their luggage in tow.

“What's with you lately? I haven't seen you act this way for years.” Said Grape.

“I guess all of this excitement is getting to me.” Peanut looked down at his feet. “I forget what we're really going to be doing. It's like...” Peanut trailed off for moment and sighed.

“Like what?” Grape looked up at her husband.

“Well the honeymoon we never got to have.” Peanut smiled a little. “There's always been kids to take care of, workloads and deadlines, bills to pay, it's a wonder we were ever just regular pets in our lifetime.”

Peanut draped his free arm around Grape and held her a little closer. Their paws kneading the soft dirt into the ground while they walked ever longer. He saw Grape's paw-prints and smiled.

“You know what else we haven't done in awhile?” Peanut said, a mischievous glimmer in his eye.

“No I don't.” The cat felt her whiskers twitch with curiosity. A smile curled on her lips.

“How about we race to the plane?” Peanut grinned and nudged his wife. “Last one there is a rotten egg.”

“Oh come on Peanut.” Grape chuckled and rolled her eyes.

“Is the married life making the ever famous Grape Jelly Sandwich soft?” Peanut teased.

“Funny you should say I'm the one getting soft.” Said Grape, turning towards her husband and poking his stomach. “I'm not the one filling out these days.”

Peanut chuckled a little. “So what? I think it makes me look rugged, mature, maybe even masculine.”

“Call it what you want, it's still there.” Grape began to jog a little. Peanut grinned and jogged with her. The heavy backpack on his back and the luggage in his paws felt weightless the moment he felt himself get sucked into the challenge. The spirit of competition burned in him.

“You don't seem to have any objections to my physique.” Peanut picked up his pace and jogged a little further ahead, Grape picked up her pace and run beside him.

“Of course, I don't have to waste money on a stuffed animal these days. I get to go to bed with one.” Grape's pace turned to an all out run. Peanut laughed and ran to keep up with his wife.

“That's the spirit!”

Both animals kept close to each other. Peanut's tongue lolled out of his head, his panting wild and excited. Grape panted a little herself, her cheeks blushed when she saw her husband overtake her pace. Not one to be beaten, she trudged ahead of him. Once again neck in neck with her husband. Peanut grinned and let his wife overtake him ever so slightly. He may not have been a master at some things, but running was built into his doggy genetics.

Peanut bolted forward with a surprising burst of speed. Grape had to wonder where he kept all of that energy, and how he had not lost it to the desk jockey lifestyle. In a desperate attempt to catch up, she tried to force a burst of energy herself. Grape tucked her head down and tried to think of something else, somewhere else, anything other than the pain building in her lungs. Then, all of a sudden, Peanut stopped. Grape turned to her husband and gasped, she tried to stop her self but only managed to throw off her balance. The cat tripped and nearly tumbled to the ground. Lucky for her, a pair of strong arms caught her and propped her back on her feet.

Grape gasped for breath and looked up at who just saved her from the fall. A large dog with a collar adorned with spikes stood before her. He was just about the same height as her husband, give or take an inch. All three pets looked at one another confused, shocked by their abrupt meeting.

“I-I'm sorry about that. I wasn't paying attention to where I was going.” Grape rolled her eyes and looked at her husband.

“Glad you have such good reflexes there. I wasn't paying much attention myself.” Said Peanut.

“No problem, just glad you didn't hurt yourself.” The dog shrugged. Another awkward pause, Grape saw the dog fiddle around with his brown rawhide leather belt. A few things could be seen poking out of the pockets, anything from assorted candies, to a Swiss army knife. Peanut was first to break the silence again.

“I think I recognize you from somewhere, you by chance involved in the project?”

“Yeah, and I guess that means you are too.” The larger white dog said. “I was just on my way to the plane when you guys crashed into me.”

The dog pointed into the distance, the direction they had been running from. Peanut looked over at the dog again and tilted his head. “You do know that plane over there is for special passengers only right?”

The dog's floppy ears fell with distress. “What do you mean?”

“We made the same mistake you were about to.” Grape spoke. “Apparently that plane is for 'special' people only.”

“How do you get on the special plane?” He spoke, glancing over at Grape.

“Beats me, the pilot failed to inform us.” Grape shrugged. “Regardless he pointed us towards the plane we needed to be at.” Peanut cleared his throat and reached out with one paw.

“Forgive my rudeness, I'm Peanut Butter Sandwich, and yes that's my real name.” Said Peanut with a nod. The larger dog looked at Peanut's paw and began shaking it. Peanut felt the dog's sharp claws rub against his own paw, they felt like a cat's claws.

“And I'm Knife, Knife Schneider.” Said the large white dog.

“Oh and this is my wife, Grape.” Peanut smiled and gestured to the lavender cat. Grape looked a little stunned when Knife did not react surprised about the term “wife," rather he reached out to shake her paw as well.

“Nice to meet you too ma'am.” Knife gave a curt nod and a firm handshake.

“Likewise.” Grape smiled. “...we'd better get going. Don't want to get left behind.”

And so the trio began walking towards the plane. Peanut sighed with relief that such a dog was friendly. At a first glance Knife looked rather dangerous. The spiked collar and a few scars here or there the sharp looking claws and powerful vice-like jaw. In fact a name like Knife seemed rather violent all in itself. Still, Peanut felt bad for even thinking about judging a dog based on his appearance. He seemed nice enough on the outside.

“You know I don't think I saw you at that screening facility when I went there. But then again so many people were there.” Peanut shrugged.

“Erm...that's because I'm not really from around here.” Knife frowned a little. “I was with my siblings and my parents at the airport, when I went somewhere I wasn't supposed to. I saw a plane headed to Babylon Gardens, I heard so much about the place and heard it was so different from the rest of the world, I thought it might be cool to check it out.”

The three pets drew ever closer to their desired plane. Grape frowned a little and looked at the dog. “Siblings and parents?”

“Adoptive family, mom and dad are a dog and a cat couple, kinda like you guys!.” Knife smiled and shrugged.

Grape noticed the dog's tail wag a bit. He was a little more excited to be talking about this than most other dogs. It was a youthful kind of excitement she had learned as Peanut's housemate. “If you don't mind me asking, just how old are you?”

“Six years old.” Knife replied. “Why do you ask?”

Peanut and Grape shared a glanced and shrugged. “Just curious. You just seemed a little old for your age is all.” Grape masked her surprise a bit.

“You're not much older than our son come to think of it.” Peanut replied.

“Oh? Is he here?” Knife wagged his tail a little faster.

“Nah, he's at home with his grandparents...er our owners.” Said Peanut. “Grape didn't think it a good idea to bring the boys along.”

Knife shrugged a little and kept his pace. Peanut sighed and looked over the plane before him. It was smaller than any commercial airliner he had seen, but by no means a small plane. He did not recognize it from the television like he did with the deluxe plane. It was plain, boring, generic. The only thing separating it from any others happened to be the same “Milton Air” insignia he had seen on the other, much better plane.


“Does your family know you're here Knife?” Grape asked as the pets approached the entrance to the plane. “They must be worried sick about you.”

“They know I'm on my way to the pet city...hope I can find them there.” Knife looked down a little.

“ Maybe we could help you look when we get there.” Peanut smiled a little.

“Uh...thanks! You guys won't mind?” Knife seemed a little dumbfounded.

“Nope, not in the slightest.” Grape smiled a little.

“If my son was out there all alone, I would hope someone would give him a hand.” Peanut nodded.

Knife smiled, his floppy ears perking up to the best of their ability. Peanut turned towards the plane. Standing in front were two security guards of sorts. He checked the pocket in his collar for his identification.

The journey was just about to begin.

~~

Amadieu squinted in the dim light of the plane. They had adjusted long since he had boarded, but he could hear noises from just outside. There were muffled voices. Three animals for certain, a cat judging by the sound of their claws on the steps leading into the plane. He could tell there was one dog, the claws sounded different and were a little more heavy.

And perhaps another cat to go alongside that? No, the footsteps were a little more clumsy and weighted. Perhaps a heavy cat. Maybe another dog that did not trim his claws. He would have to wait and see until they boarded the plane.

“Mmm...you guys hear that?” A black cat sat up in her seat and yawned. “Oh I hope it's the pilot back from his break. I'm tired of all this waiting.”

“Your lack of patience is starting to whittle away my patience.” Another dog with curly fur grumbled, his eyes peeked out just above the book he was reading. At a cursory glance, it was a book on psychology and understanding the mind. Amadieu could tell he was just reading a comic book wedged in between the pages.

“Your lack of patience with my lack of patience is starting to whittle away my patience Lexie.” The black cat giggled and stuck her tongue out at the dog.

“For one, the name is 'Lextor,' please refrain from calling me any of your cutesy nicknames. And two, if that isn't the pilot I think I may just lose my mind.”

“Aw but you're the only guy on here that talks back to me. I mean look at that stiff over there, hasn't said a word to me since I've been on.” The cat gestured over to Amadieu. The Bernese Mount Dog said nothing in reply. “All of you dogs are so weird, I really hope I'm not the only cat that's going to be on board.”

As if by divine intervention, a cat did indeed walk into the plane. The black cat cracked a smile and clapped her paws. She would have to hope for things more often. Behind the cat were, well, more dogs. Still, it was better than nothing.

“Hey you! Come sit next to me.” The black cat waved at Grape. Grape smiled and shook her head.

“Sorry I'm already sitting with someone.” Grape placed her carry-on luggage in an empty seat and looked to Peanut. He had followed suit and set up in the seat adjacent to her.

“I'll sit next to you.” Knife wagged his tail and plodded over to the empty seat next to the black cat and slipped in. .

“Now...wait hold on what just happened there? Did I just get rejected?” A cat had chosen a dog's company over her own. Had she been looking with Lextor's keen eyes, she would have known the reason.

“It's rather simple, my dear Luna.” Lextor replied, he grinned a little. He felt like Holmes lecturing the ever impulsive Watson. “These two are husband and wife.”

“How did you know that?” Knife gasped. Luna giggled a little, Lextor had indeed called her “dear.” Grape and Peanut looked at each other with unease, having become the unexpected center of attention.

“If one took the time to glance at their paws, they would notice a fine cut diamond on an engagement ring, a pricey ring if it is the real thing. Right next to the much less extravagant wedding band.” Lextor grinned. “And that held gaze those two shared before taking their seats, well if that was not any sign of affection then I know of none.”

Peanut looked towards Luna, her curious eyes looking him up and down. “If you're wondering, yeah he's right,” said Peanut.

“There no good looking toms in your neighborhood?” Asked Luna. Grape cleared her throat and raised her brow.

“Now what's that supposed to mean?” Grape glared a little and felt her claws press out ever so slightly.

“Hon, please, no fights on the plane.” Peanut leaned towards Grape and whispered in her ear.

“Aw come on I meant nothing by it.” Luna said, a sympathetic smile on her lips. Lextor glanced between the dog and the cat. He had been so busy following his own little path of deduction that he had not realized the inherent crime against nature.

Cat and dog wed together, in loving matrimony. It seemed an oxymoron. At least from his perspective. Still he would show those without class what it meant to hold oneself with dignity. He would not stoop to their level. He would wait until he found someone else to do that for him.

“My she's a feisty one. Good to see you keep her on a short leash.” Lextor chuckled a little and turned the page to his book. Grape looked dumbfounded. He was talking about her like she was some sort of animal, well a lesser creature of some sort!

“Oh don't mind him, he's got this condition you see, it's a really big stick stuffed right up his-”

“That mouth of yours is going to get you hurt one day.” A deep voice spoke. Peanut jumped a little, he had not noticed the third passenger sitting a few seats behind him. “Anyone ever tell you to look before you leap?”

Amadieu's stare had locked onto Luna. She smiled a little and nodded. “I knew I'd get you to talk to me at some point today. No offense though, I don't need the lecture.”

The mountain dog smiled back, though his eyes did not show any signs of warmth or humor. “In my line of work, it seems those that don't need my advice need it the most.”

Luna shrugged and looked at the two new passengers sitting behind her. The dog and cat couple whispering to each other. It seemed they were arguing about something. Luna grinned a little and leaned forward, listening in on their hushed voices.

“Come on, you know people were going to say things about us. Just relax and turn the other cheek. You should hear all the flack I get when I'm out working...”

“Where do you work?” Luna poked her head in between the couple.

“Gah!” Grape and Peanut jumped. Luna looked between the two animals and grinned a little.

“Well?”

“Uh...I'm journalist.” Peanut replied, his voice still a little shaken. “You know, newspaper stuff and sometimes broadcasting. Not very many pets want the job, but it pays the bills.”

“Ooh! And what do you do for a living?” Luna gestured towards Grape with her muzzle.

“I take care of the kids.” Said Grape.

Lextor looked up from his book again and turned towards the offending dog and cat “Hold on, you two...”

“We adopted.” Peanut held up his paws and chuckled.

“Oh...yeah that's what I thought you were going to say.” Luna chuckled and blushed a little. The animals were all quiet for a moment. Peanut sighed and glanced down at a wrist watch. That pilot was taking his sweet time. The dog reached down into his messenger bag and pulled out a small sketch pad and some pencils.

Grape rested her head on his shoulders as he began to outline a few characters on the sheet. His tongue stuck out from the side of his mouth, his paws focused on the task at hand. Grape yawned a little and began to doze. She had missed her nap that day and was about to make it up. Luna stared ahead of herself, her eyes glazed with sudden boredom, Knife had that look of a dog that wanted to say something but he kept it to himself.

Amadieu watched his fellow passengers with his well trained eyes. The big dog sitting beside Luna was just a pup, there were tell-tale signs in his simple mannerisms. A pup that had seen a few things more than the average dog. A few scars here or there, and the muscles of a prize fighter. Perhaps the dog had seen his share of street scuffles, or worse yet, action in a dog fighting ring.

Lextor worried Amadieu more than the pup. His obvious contempt for fellow passengers made him a potential threat should problems arise. The mountain dog knew Lextor's contempt for cats went beyond his minor annoyance towards Luna. He would have to keep his eye on the Spanish Water Dog.

“You seem troubled.” A low voice spoke. Amadieu turned to his right. Hiding in the shadows was another dog that chose to keep his presence hidden from the others. The large dog, a Tibetan Mastiff no less, had somehow remained invisible to the others around him.

“That's because I am.” Amadieu replied. “I see the ingredients for a bomb here on this plane. All it takes is some planning and one well placed spark. But you know this already don't you.”

“I am aware there is potential to upset the balance of power, but for now that potential remains yet unrealized.” Said Torii.

“What can go wrong, will go wrong. Once again, something I learned in my line of work.” Amadieu grunted as he watched Luna. She glanced over to Lextor and grinned. That cat seemed out to spite that dog for the sake of entertainment. He would have to keep an eye on her as well.

“I never said it wasn't a possibility. The balance of things could change at any moment.” Torii leaned back into his seat. “When it does it will be a problem, for now it is too early to tell.”

“Shouldn't we come up with preventative measures? You seem like you know what you're talking about.”

“Things will go their course, external forces will only push things in a direction we cannot control.”

Amadieu narrowed his eyes a little and kept his thoughts to himself. They had about four more hours worth of stops before the plane would reach its destination. He would have to enjoy the relative silence and emptiness while it lasted.

~~

Don't sneeze, don't breath too loud, don't move a muscle.

The mantra in his head ran on repeat. Suitcases surrounded him on all sides. Cardboard boxes with various supplies were lined up against the wall, fastened in place with bright yellow straps. Beneath him were a few boxes worth of computer supplies that were vital for his “mission.”

“Goodness, we're calling it a mission.” CJ thought to himself. It was so surreal. He was just a raccoon that worked on the newspaper, what was Jenny Gulliver of all people doing with this sort of tech?

He was too caught up in the excitement of things to ask himself the inherent strangeness about Jenny's “toys.” It gnawed at his thoughts the whole time he sat in silence. She somehow had access to various surveillance gadgets, covert GPS hardware, the whole package.

It was Peanut that forced him to think about what was going on. Though not quite on purpose. At least an hour before they had parted ways, Peanut asked Jenny about her gadgets. CJ closed his eyes tight, trying to recall her response. He had been fiddling with his paws, staring into nothing and letting his mind wander.

“Security, her dad used to do something for some security company.” CJ scratched at his chin to give his fidgeting hands something to do.

That was a believable statement. H.J. Gulliver was a mountain of a man. A little aged, but in his prime he could have easily been besting bears at wrestling. However, the stuff that CJ was using, or going to be using, was a little too high-tech for “old” surplus gear. How either of them ended up writing newspapers for a living was beyond him. Then again, when he was young, he never would have imagined having a full time job that belonged to humans under normal circumstances.

He could hear movement from outside his hiding place. Heavy boots on metal, one of the pilots was making his way along the luggage. Perhaps checking to make sure nothing was turned loose. Perhaps they could smell a rat, or a raccoon, rather. The footsteps walked closer and closer to where CJ was hiding.

CJ closed his eyes tight and held his breath. He could feel the very man's presence as he stood over the luggage. His heart raced, beating like a war drum in his chest. A hand laid itself down upon the suitcase, CJ saw a thin strip of light squeeze through the new cracks created by the sudden shift.

He was done for, he knew it. He said thousands of silent prayers to thousands of different gods in as many ways he knew how. Hoping at least one out there might hear his plea. Much to his surprise, the hand pulled away. Like it had just lost interest. Heavy footsteps wandered back to whence they came, leaving a confounded coon in silence. CJ peeked between the luggage and saw the co-pilot walk back to his seat.

A gasp choked in the back of his throat. There sitting amongst the cargo, right in the open, was a calico cat. She was watching both pilot and co-pilot with squinted eyes. Her paws resting upon her temples. The raccoon was baffled, the co-pilot that had come over to investigate earlier looked right in the cat's direction, and did absolutely nothing.

“I swear there's something back there.” The co-pilot said.

“Relax, I don't see anything.”

“But...”

“Relax and take a breath. I need you concentrate on flying.” The pilot said, the co-pilot opened his mouth to speak again. But he knew better than to argue back.

“What on earth...” CJ poked his head out of the luggage and watched the cat nod a little. A very pleased look on her face. She stumbled off of her throne of luggage, when she looked at CJ.

Both cat and raccoon locked eyes for a moment. Apprehensive feelings apparent in their eyes. The cat's tail flicked back and forth with agitation.

“Who are you and what are you doing here?” The cat spoke first. CJ covered his mouth and looked at the pilots. “Oh relax will you, they fell for a little mind trick I conjured. They're so wrapped up in routine that they can't see us. Though I'll have to snap them out of it if the plane starts to crash or something.”

“How did you do it?” CJ had so many questions, so many thoughts. Only one made it to his mouth in time.

“Proper genetics.” The cat glanced at her claws and sighed. “Though since you're a raccoon I might have to cook up a better mindwipe.”

“No wait!” CJ held up his paws and shook his head. “I-I mean I'm here on business. I don't want to be seen either.”

“Business?” The cat folded her arms.

“Yeah, I'm doing some, er, undercover work. I have lots of gadgets and stuff to help a few of my friends get some information on this whole project thing. My boss thinks it's kinda fishy.” CJ blurted, he was wondering if the cat was somehow making him do it or if he was just nervous.

“Odd, I didn't think the president would send in another spy without my knowing.” The cat stroked her chin.

“Wait you're with the government?” CJ gasped.

“Sort of.”

“Secret service?”

“Let's just say I'm even more secret than that.” The cat grinned. “Then what are you? I doubt you're from some other country trying to do some digging.”

“I...work for a newspaper. Trying to get the inside scoop on what Keene Milton is trying to pull.”

“A newspaper?” The cat tried to say it with a straight face. “You're a little paparazzi minion? That sounds too stupid to be real.”

“No honest I do!” CJ held up his paw and retreated back to his box of goods. He jumped back out holding the latest copy of The Scribe, at least the pet version thereof. The undercover cat skimmed the newspaper, it was most certainly from Babylon Gardens. She had ducked out of there days ago.

“So this still hasn't convinced me that I don't need to mindwipe you.”

“Now no need to be hasty, I need this to keep my job, and I'm sure you aren't doing this for free yourself. Your kind rarely does such things for free after all.”

“My kind?” The cat raised a brow and folded her arms.

“That...came out wrong.” CJ blushed. “I mean you super secret mercenary types, I bet that's what you are. A spy for hire, or something like that.”

“Yeah, something like that.” The cat glared a little at the coon. CJ set the newspaper aside and took a seat on top of the suitcases. He looked the cat in the eye and took a deep breath.

“Point is, you need something, I need something. We both can get our somethings by digging up the dirty secrets behind this whole thing.”

“Are you insinuating that we team up?” The cat said, though not without a hint of intrigue. She stumbled over to CJ's box of tricks and glanced over everything. A laptop, a small generator, various different kinds of satellite equipment. “Not a bad little kit you got here, but care to tell me how you were going to lug it around?”

“I was going to hitch a ride on a little car or something with all of this stuff in tow. Unlike most pets out there I know a thing or two about driving.” CJ beamed.

“Obviously a fool proof plan.” The cat rolled her eyes and took a seat. “Look, I can't pass up a helping hand or extra equipment. But let me make this clear, if you try anything funny, I'll switch your brain out with a cockroach, understood?”

“Loud and clear sir...ma'am.” CJ straightened his back. “Erm...my name is Carlin by the way, or CJ if you would like.”

“I'm Alana, pleased to meet you.” The cat reached out her paw and shook the raccoon's.

~~

“So let me get this straight. You wake Snow up from her nap.”

“Yes.”

“She beats you.”

“Yes.”

“You ask her on a date.”

“That's right.”

“She stops beating you...and accepts?

“Bingo.”

Denver could not find words. In all of the months he had known his adoptive brother, this had to be one of the strangest things he had seen. Sure he had been pulled into a very strange family, but he could get over that. Yet Jon was still, in his mind, a best friend of sorts.

Back at the shelter, he was not used to having friends. Such a concept was alien to him. Most of the pets from his old neighborhood were outside folk that dared to test the bounds of nature (and sometimes their own safety.) He was not that person, and those around him knew better than to associate with someone who was afraid to even test the temperature of a swimming pool.

Jon should have been, based on his looks, someone like Denver. At least that's what the cat thought when he first saw his older brother in person. When the newest Sandwich had heard his new older brother was out camping with wolves, he was expecting a wolf-dog hybrid that somehow found himself in the strange home of a cat and dog couple. Jon failed to meet such expectations.

That made meeting him a little easier on his nerves. When Jon turned out to be “normal,” and a bit on the understanding side, Denver warmed up a little easier to his new older brother. Sure Jon was one to do things without thinking, not afraid of getting hurt and did not take into consideration the consequences of all his actions. He still somehow found ways to play with his brother without making his brother feel left out. Even coaxing Denver into strange new things.

Unless, of course, it had something to do with Lupa.

Denver did not mean to detest the company of wolves. He was not one to hate. In fact he did not hate the wolves because of something they did. Jon became someone different around those wolves. Especially Lupa. Everything became a competition, everything became a scramble for her attention and adoration.

Almost always at the expense of little brother. But Jon was his best friend and brother, Denver knew he could exercise a little more patience for the sake of his brother's love life. That's not to say Denver wasn't relieved when Lupa told Jon such a relationship was impossible. Things could heal and get better. Jon would be a little disappointed, sure, but now Denver wouldn't be getting the short end of the stick when the wolves came around the play. It was something of a dream come true. That is until he heard about Jon's latest exploits into the realm of relationships.

“You sure she wasn't being sarcastic or anything?” Asked Denver.

“I'm sure of it. I know it's kinda weird and all, it was a spur of the moment kind of thing.” Said Jon. “I bet Snow just pities me, and this is all just a pity date, but you know it's sweet of her.”

“You have a strange definition of sweet.”

“Come on now, Snow used to be way worse.” Jon chuckled and leaned into his pillow. “She's one of those people that isn't so fond of talking about how they feel, but inside she's a sweetheart. I've seen that side before.”

“Since when were you attracted to her like this? I mean it's not like you even thought about liking Lupa.”

Jon was silent for a moment. Denver felt just a little bad, Lupa still must have been a sore spot. The white dog shrugged and looked at his brother. “I figured that I needed to accept the facts and move on, no use moping about something that was apparently never going to happen.”

“Fair enough.” Denver grumbled a little.

“You've been acting awfully strange about this...” Jon stroked his chin. “Oh goodness, I didn't just ask out your crush did I?”

“What?” Denver gasped.

“Is that why you told mom about the kiss? Because you were mad at me for being with Snow when you liked her?” Jon's ears fell a little. “Aw jeez now I feel bad.”

“I never said that. Look it's not all about Snow or anything like that. Besides she scares me.” Said Denver.

“Then what is it about?”

“I...don't know.” Denver shook his head and curled up into a ball. He wanted to be frank and say Jon acted weird around the girls he liked. Somehow he knew Jon and Snow would hook up in a rebound, history had a funny way of repeating itself. If he nipped it at the bud he might be able to actually keep the Lupa situation from happening all over again. He told his mom to keep such feelings at bay.

Now all he felt was guilt.

“Look, things won't change at all around here. We can still play games and imaginate. It's not like I'm moving in with her or anything.” Said Jon as he gave Denver a pat on his back. The cat scratched the back of his head and sighed. He nodded, the subject's descent into awkwardness needed to be halted.

“So...that drawing of mom and dad over there. Who really drew it?” Denver spoke again, trying to divert attention from the problem itself. Jon looked a little shocked.

“what do you...”

“Come on, I've seen your drawings. None look like that.” Said Denver. Jon blushed, he was unaware that Denver had seen any of his artwork. “Who drew it?”

“That's a bit of a strange and long story.” Jon licked his lips a little and looked at the simple picture of his mom and dad. Or not exactly his mom and dad. They were the same, but different. Same people, different universe. Explaining that to Denver was going to be difficult. The best option was, well, to perhaps let it explain itself someday. “Let's just say the universe is bigger than you think.”

Denver looked a little unsatisfied by the response, but he would have to deal with it.

“Well if you don't mind Denver, I'm going to bed. I have a busy night tomorrow.” Jon snuggled into a pillow and buried his face in it. His thoughts turning to strange new things. Denver nodded in reply and yawned.

“Goodnight then, I'm going to go play video games.” Denver stood up and left Jon alone in the room.

Jon was too engaged in his own thoughts to care. They were dancing all over the place in his head. He wondered if he could keep Snow happy on his date, but any moment later and he was thinking of Dayshaun and his siblings. He wondered what it was like in their world, how people were different. How they might be the same. He wondered if he was there, and if there was a Snow and a Denver.

And then he was back to thinking about Snow. Little by little, his thoughts trailed off into his subconscious. His eyelids grew heavy as sleep took them. His chest rose and fell with steady cadence. Soon, very soon, the dog was asleep and dreaming strange dreams.

~~

Once again I hope I did your characters justice. Figuring out a way to introduce all of the characters required a few rewrites, but it helped me out of my writing slump. Thanks again guys, and the minor characters will be making appearances soon!

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Fri Apr 19, 2013 11:17 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Bravo, Bravo! I must praise you! You did it perfectly. I love how you have introduced all the new characters. I feel flattered that Knife was the first character to make apparition and by the way he did it. I have no complaints, only compliments. And you even used what I said before about the honeymoon, yay! :mrgreen:
You even somehow teamed them up! Haha, its appears that Torii and Amadieu were going to be some tipe of guardians of neutrality, meanwhile Luna and Lextor take charge for make the messes (and Knife getting just in the middle of this problems without intention). :lol:
It's good to see Alana again. And now she work together with CJ? And Jenny have a misterious secret past? This is getting so exciting.
Jon and Snow's date is so close, we'll see it in no time! Denver's backstory was way too cool, and now you left me intrigued with Jon's backstory, I want to know his past!

Your qualities as a writer is faultless. :D
I'll be waiting for the part 2. Hope it will be soon ;)

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
you did indeed do Luna justice. I can't wait for her to cause more trouble =P

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Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:01 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Yey! I liked how Lextor was portrayed, it was exactly like how I imagined it, and even better. XD

I'm excited to see what you have planned for the characters. Looks like a scheme is brewing. :lol:

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
did you choose any of my extras.(other than lewis he was already picked.)

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Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:13 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
just the right day to be away and come back late, so TYPICAL! :evil:
But at least this awesome update did my day. You made your usual fine job of mixing the characters and keep their personalities on the spotlight, BRAVISSIMO! :D
And yay for another reference to our crossover... ;)

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Yay I'm glad everyone approves of the portrayals. :D

Legotron123 wrote:
did you choose any of my extras.(other than lewis he was already picked.)


Of the extras you submitted (not including Lewis), I am using Steve and Jack.

Gren wrote:
...you left me intrigued with Jon's backstory, I want to know his past!


Jon's little section of back story was a reference to a crossover Valerio wrote after I finished "Way Back Machine." I make a few call backs to it ever so often in my stories. Come to think of it, it's one of the few times where I've made a reference to something topical and story related (I've made tiny references to songs by Billy Joel and Kansas, "Jon Snow" comes from the "Game of Thrones" character with the same name, Duke MacGurdle pokes fun at Macgyver, just to name a few of my out there references). I think I might have an addiction to making references to other things :lol:.

You can check out the crossover here if you would like and it takes place in between New Era and Way Back Machine.

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Sun Apr 21, 2013 4:13 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
You messed Torii up completely! He should NOT have even..... :lol: Just Kidding! It's awesome. He is yours to mold now, and I see you are doing him justice!

I enjoyed the update and hope to see more of these wonderful characters.

So... this means that Peanut and Grape are.... helping alana? Yikes, if they ever find out...

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Honorable Intentions wrote:

Legotron123 wrote:
did you choose any of my extras.(other than lewis he was already picked.)


Of the extras you submitted (not including Lewis), I am using Steve and Jack.



Awesome. Those 2 (aside from Lewis) are the 2 I want the most. What changes did you need to make to them?

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Sun Apr 21, 2013 6:37 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
I believe that this conversation could be best done through PM...

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Almost a month without updates, we miss you H.I. :cry:

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Gren wrote:
Almost a month without updates, we miss you H.I. :cry:

I still can't wait for my extras to appear. I need someone to enjoy something I made. It makes me feel good which I need right now.

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Housepets: Pet Project

8.Reluctant Alliance

"You're pretty good at drawing cats.”

A voice in the darkness. Who was it? It sounded familiar. What an odd thing for random voices to be saying as well. Peanut's eyes opened little by little. He was still on the plane, jittery turbulence was still shaking him ever so often. The clouds were black, illuminated only by lightning and the plane's lights.

“These characters are weird though, what's with all the psychics and stuff?”

Peanut rubbed the drool from his lips and looked towards the seat in front of him. The realization set in when he noticed his messenger bag was no longer by his side. The dog gasped and jumped up to snatch it from the cat sitting in front of him, only to be stopped by his seat belt. Peanut gagged a little and slumped down, the skin beneath his fur glowing a bright crimson.

“Chillax a little, I thought you said you were a journalist. What's with all the comics?” Luna muttered, her paws flipping through Peanut's sketch book.

“It's something I do in my spare time, now please give me my stuff back.” Said Peanut.

“I'm not done yet.” Luna placed her finger on the page. “It's kinda cool, but it needs more of this guy.”

“Look, I am not fond of having my stuff...wait you like it?” Peanut paused for a moment and looked at the page she was reading.

“It makes me laugh.” Luna shrugged and glanced over the page. “You should totally post this somewhere. I bet people would love it.”

“Meh, I'm sure no one wants to read the story of some dumb suburban dog and his misadventures.” Peanut sighed and gently reached for the sketch book. The cat pouted a little but relinquished Peanut's property. He shut the sketchbook and smiled a little at the cover, Grape had given him the idea for a title. It read “Housepets,” a title that was so simple but so fitting in that charming way, a title people might remember.
“I want to read the rest of it.” Luna's tail flicked back and forth. Her eyes once again on the sketch book.

“There is no more of it, I have to make more.” Peanut smiled a little.

“Then I demand you make more. I want to know what happens next.”

Peanut shook his head, laughing in disbelief. He was yet to meet a “fan” of anything he had written or drawn. But he decided to humor the cat just a little. “I'll get to work on it when we finally get off this plane. Speaking of which, do you know when we're going to land.”

Luna shrugged a little and turned away from Peanut. He took that as a “no.” The excitement was over for the time being. Peanut tilted his head to the side, the vertebrae in his neck straightened and let out a loud pop. A small sigh of relief slipped between the dogs lips. He could not wait to get up and move around, his whole body felt stiff.

“That was gross Peanut.” Said Grape. Her voice was muffled by Peanut's shoulder. Peanut chuckled a little at his wife and scratched behind her ears.

“It felt good, you should try it one of these days.”

“I'll pass.” Grape stretched a little and nuzzled the dog's shoulder. She purred a little and grabbed his hand. “Are we there yet?”

“You're asking the wrong dog.” Peanut glanced at his wrist watch, it was early in the morning back in Babylon Gardens. What time zone was he in? “Be right back hon, I'm going to figure out if we're anywhere close to the city.”

Grape nodded and lifted her head from Peanut's shoulder. He kissed the purple cat on the forehead and handed her his pillow. She accepted it with a tired smile and buried her face in it. The plane had filled with passengers since he had last been awake, tired chatter filled the cabin. Peanut noticed a spry German Shepherd talking the ears off of Lextor. Lextor would nod occasionally, though he looked none to please to have his sleep interrupted.

“And then I set the comic on fire! Well not really, it's a cool special effect I get with this program on my computer.”

“That's nice Clovis.” Lextor grumbled.

“Lewis.”

“Right, right.” Lextor turned and saw Peanut standing. “You, cat lover, are we anywhere close to landing? I'm just dying to get there.”

“I thought you might know the answer somewhere in that infinite wisdom of yours.” Peanut folded his arms. Lextor rolled his eyes and looked over at the German Shepherd sitting next to him. “I suppose you don't know either.”

“Nope.” Lewis shrugged.

Lextor let out an exasperated sigh and stood from his seat. “Okay I'm going to the bathroom.”

“He's a nice guy isn't he?” Lewis turned towards Peanut.

“That's not the word I would use to describe him.”

Lewis ignored the last part and sifted through his small carry on bag. Peanut continued to make his way to the back. He had not realized just how many new pets had found themselves there. It was full to the brim of cats and dogs. The pointer scratched his chin and looked for someone that might know something. His eyes set his sights on the Bernese Mountain Dog from earlier. He seemed knowledgeable enough.

“Excuse me...” Said Peanut. The dog paid him no mind, he appeared to be deep in thought. “Excuse me sir, I just have a quick question.”

Amadieu looked at Peanut with piercing eyes. Peanut gulped, his throat began to feel very dry.

“Well? What is it?”

“Oh, yes. I was wondering if you knew when the plane was going to touch down. It's been an awfully long time.”

About 3 hours off schedule, the pilot lied Amideu thought to himself. “I apologize, but I'm in the dark about this as well. We get there when we get there.”

Peanut shrugged and nodded. “Alright, just curious. I'm just feeling a little cramped is all.”

“You're feeling cramped?” Amideu gestured to his own girth.

“I see your point.” Peanut nodded a little and backed off. “I'll leave you to your...whatever it was you were doing.”

He had given up at this point. It made him feel awkward, standing amongst so many pets. There was a point in his life where he craved the center of attention, but a few years living with Bino in charge taught him to avoid it. At the mere thought of Bino, something clicked in his head. Something that he didn't really ever think about until that exact moment. Then it hit him like a truck, Bino was nowhere to be found on the plane!

~~

Keene glanced down at his shot of punch. There were several empty glasses turned over before him. He smiled, rows of pointy white teeth stained with red dye exposed themselves. The ferret shivered a little, feeling woozy with the turbulence.

“Come on pup, can't...hold y-your sugar?” Keene stammered.

“Nah, just...give me a sec.” Bino took a deep breath and downed a shot of punch. He had consumed so much sugar the inside of his mouth felt raw. The burn was intolerable. How could such a small animal pack away so much drink? It made no sense to him. Still, he was not going to give up. He was not going to lose at shots. He always won at shots.

Keene took his last glass and downed it without giving it a second thought. Bino gasped and felt his ears fall. One lone shot glass of punch lay before him. This was it. He had lost all hope. The game was over and he would have to admit defeat to a nasty little weasel wannabe. Bino licked his lips and reached down to grab the shot, only to notice Keene slump out of his seat.

The ferret had passed out on the ground. Bino smiled and eased his paw. He was so happy he could hardly think. Or was that the strange soda concoction brewed and mixed in his system? He couldn't tell at this point.

“Wha...”

“Might I suggest some ginseng suh?” The ever loyal Milton Butler was already standing over Keene with a silver platter in his hand. “Perhaps some ferret friendly aspirin for immediate relief.”

“Thank you Jeeves.” Keene stood up and sat back in his seat. Taking the aspirin and rubbing his temples. “I have never met someone so stubborn at shots before. My good dog I think you deserve a medal or something.”

Bino beamed with pride. His old drinking habit had paid off! Something he never thought he would ever say in his lifetime.

“Here...have my collar. You deserve it.” Keene hiccuped and tossed his collar at Bino. The collar bounced off of Bino's nose and tumbled into his lap. He looked at it and smiled. 12 Karat gold with diamond studs. That would look good on his neck.

In his stupor, he tried in vain to fasten it to himself. Realizing that the collar was made for ferrets after his third attempt at strangulation, he decided to wrap it around his wrist. Keene lumbered off to a small bed with a belt on it and fastened himself in for a quick nap.

Bino whooped a little and downed the final shot. He passed out right there and fell to the side like a sack of bricks. His head numb to the pain.

~~

“So...Tarot I need advice.” Jon drummed his fingers on his thigh. Much like his mom did when she was thinking. Tarot peeked around the bubbling cauldron she was attending and tilted her head.

“Ask away Jon...oh but first hand me the rosemary.”

Jon grabbed the small container marked rosemary and tossed it to Tarot. She tapped it gently and let some of the ground up rosemary tumble into the boiling cauldron.

“It's about girls.”

“Girls huh?” Tarot stirred a little and poured in an unmarked can of some sort of red liquid.

“Yeah. You see I landed myself a date tonight...”

“Congratulations.”

“...with a strange girl.” Jon clasped his hands and sighed.

“What kind of strange?” Tarot searched dipped a finger into her concoction and took a taste. “Ah yes this needs more salt.”

“Well imagine a dog that isn't very much of a dog, more like a cat if you will.” Jon replied before handing the Pomeranian a small salt shaker.

“So you're dating a cat tonight are you?” Tarot chuckled. “Like father like son.”

“I didn't say I was going out with Snow!” Jon held up his paws.

“No you didn't. How oddly specific.” Said Tarot. “Your dad was about as good at lying as you are. So you're going out with Snow? An interesting choice. I never saw her as the type of cat that goes for dogs. But it's the ones people least expect I suppose.”

“I just want tonight to be something, I dunno, not a failure.” Jon looked a little timid as he stared at his toes. “She doesn't expect much from me and honestly I don't expect much from me either. It was kind of a spur of the moment sort of thing.”

Tarot stirred her cauldron some more and sniffed at it. Nodding and making a few hushed comments to herself. She looked up at Jon and took a moment to think. “Alright, first question. Why Snow?”

Jon opened his mouth to speak, but he realized he had never really thought about it. “I guess because we're good friends. Truth be told I like her attitude about things. She's so hot and firey and I'm not hot at all. I'm really cold and couldn't win a war against a pacifist.”

“Opposites attract, so they say. Alright so now you know the why. How about...what she likes? You know what she likes don't you?” Tarot stopped stirring for a moment stretched. Jon rested his head in his paws for a moment before answering again.

“I know what she doesn't like! She hates crowds, hates mushy life-time movies, and she hates that squeaky sound wet shoes make on tile.”

“Well at least you know not what to do.”

“You know, I've got an idea. She tells me she doesn't enjoy her psychic holodeck sessions all that much.” Jon started to smile. “She says it's too much work.”

Tarot knew where this was going. She knew there were no other psychics that would do such a thing for him. Even if they were available. She folded her arms and sighed.

“Maybe you could show her all the coolness I see in a holodeck...by using yours?” Jon asked.

The Pomeranian thought to herself for a moment before looking into Jon's puppy dog eyes. He was too good at that. He tugged at just the right heart strings. She chuckled a little and pat the dog on the head. “Fine I'll do it for you. But you owe me Jon. I have some cauldrons in desperate need of a scrubbing.”


“That one doesn't happen to be a cauldron that needs scrubbing is it?” Jon grimaced a little and glanced into the one Tarot was fiddling with.

“Of course it's not...well I think.” Tarot shrugged. A timer buzzed not too long after. She turned around and switched it off and clasped her paws together. “Hope you like spaghetti, half a cauldron full is no small amount and I'm certainly not going to eat all of it.”

“It's not going to turn me into something weird is it?” Jon sniffed at the noodles.

“Well...”

Jon had already dipped his finger into the sauce tasted it. “Hey that's not bad!”

Before long he had already loaded up a plate. The thoughts of a holodeck date still lingering in his mind. Oh the possibilities. He was going to make this the best darned date ever. He certainly hoped.
~~

Grape stumbled a little, her carry-on luggage felt so heavy in her arms. The sun had long since risen before they landed. How was the pilot still conscious after that mess? They had been flying the entire night and long into the early morning.

“Hey, I got you that coffee you asked for. Trade you.” Peanut slid up next to her, a smile on his face. She took the coffee and handed him her baggage.

She took a slow sip, wincing a little from the heat, but drinking it none the less. “Oh that's the stuff.”

“Glad you approve, any news on the rest of our luggage?” Peanut watched the conveyor belt for his familiar red suitcase.

“At the rate things are going today I think our luggage was fed to sharks or something.” Grape slouched a little.

“Oh there they are!” Lo and behold, Peanut was right. A purple and red suitcase slid along their merry way. His tail wagged a bit as he picked up the suitcases.

“Oooh color coordinated bags, that's adorable.” Said Luna. Grape nearly splashed her coffee to the right, much to Peanut's relief she managed to save the cup of piping hot liquid.

“Have you been following me?” Peanut shook his head.

“Duh! How couldn't you tell I was following you?”

“Why are you following me...”

You said you'd finish that comic when you got off the plane. So I'm waiting.”

The cat and dog couple looked at each other. Grape leaned towards Peanuts cheek and kissed him.

“She's your problem not mine.” Grape whispered and chuckled a little. Peanut rolled his eyes and turned towards Luna.

“Well I have to put all of my luggage up and find a house before I start drawing anything.”

“You and your empty promises, okay fine but once all of that's in order I expect a comic.” Luna waggled her finger as she slipped away again. Peanut could breathe easy, at least for the time being.

“I thought having a fan would be nice.” Said Peanut.

“At least she's well-meaning.”

“Hopefully that doesn't slip into creepy.” Peanut glanced over his shoulder just to make sure Luna wasn't tailing them.

Grape rolled her eyes and glanced around herself. The terminal seemed like any regular airport terminal. Save for one major difference. The entire place was populated with cats and dogs. Stores were already being run by animals, airport security happened to be wolves. It was like she had woken up to a world where things had turned upside down.

“You know this reminds me of this thing on TV I saw once.” Peanut said amidst the noise. “There was this reality TV show about a pet resort, bunch of really rich peoples' pets got to stay there.”

“You watch reality TV?”

“Hey I was channel surfing and it popped up.” Peanut shrugged. “I thought it would be funny if that's all this was. A TV show.”

“What an odd definition of 'funny.'” Said Grape.

The two made their way out of the luggage terminal and to the pick up area. Pets were lining up to climb into electric trains. Peanut followed the track with his eyes, and there in the distance. Nestled at the base of a mountain, amidst a thicket of trees, lay a few sparse buildings. The city he had been prepped to see seemed much more underwhelming in person.

“Next!” A wolf barked out. He was poking his head out of the driver seat window.

“I wonder if I'll get to drive stuff in the city.” Peanut pondered out loud for a moment.

“Nah, I think if someone gets to drive, it's going to be me.” Grape drew a claw along her husband's back. “Nothing like a cat's reflexes and girl's intuition behind the wheel.”

Peanut rolled his eyes and began to board the tram, when a small voice called out from behind him.

“Excuse me...s-sir?” A coal gray cat said. His timid voice was even difficult for the keen hearing of a dog. Peanut turned for a moment. Holding up the crowd for a second. Much to the annoyance of the other pets around him. The cat shrank further into himself now that attention was on him.

“You okay? What's up?” Peanut felt a little awkward standing there in the middle of the entire crowd.

“I think you dropped this...” The cat's black tipped ears twitched a little as he handed Peanut a small package. He looked like he was holding a bomb. Peanut prayed it wasn't. He grasped the package and watched the cat slink ahead of him onto the train. Grape grabbed her husband by the arm and tugged him on board.

“Look, I know you want to get to know everyone and all. But I really want a real place to nap, so if you...where did you get that?”

“Some guy just handed it to me.” Peanut held it up to his ear and shook it a little. His ears were only met with the sound of rustling paper. The box was packed tight with...whatever it was. He took a claw and cut a hole in the package. Beneath the paper was an unmarked box.

Peanut's curiosity got the better of him as he pulled the rest of the paper. He looked around, everyone was simply off in their own little world. Those used to the timezone were wide awake and conversing with zeal. Others were fast asleep in their seats. Peanut looked back at the box and pulled it open. This time there was another box.

The dog rolled his eyes and opened that box. This time the goods came out. The goods being a rather plain looking set of headphones. He sniffed at it and put it on his head to test them out. Though they were not what he was expecting, headphones were nothing to sneeze at. His old pair had broken a long while before he had even set foot on the plane.

He turned to Grape to show her, his natural excitement about newish things began to show. When he saw her fast asleep on the pillow he gave her on the plane. Peanut shrugged and stared at the ceiling. He was not all that tired. That nap on the plane was enough. Now he had other things to worry about, like how CJ was going to somehow get in touch with him.

“If this isn't Peanut Butter Sandwich I'm talking to, these headphones will used advanced radio technology to melt your brain!”

Peanut chuckled a little. “These things are cool and all, but I don't think they can even do that.”

“Peanut ! So that cat did his job, good to know.” Said CJ. Peanut pulled the headphones off and looked at them, a small microphone was built somewhere into the side. More surveillance technology. The odd thing, was that he did not recall Jenny packing any such thing.

“Where did you get these?”

“Oh I had some help. We accidentally met up on the plane and we have pretty much the same mission. 'cept she's from the government man. I mean like real secret agent stuff. She showed me her badge and everything!”

“The government?” Peanut frowned a little. He tried to keep his voice low. Hoping no one was paying any mind to the dog talking to himself about the government.

“Yeah here, you can talk to her, she seems to know who you are.”

There was some shuffling on the other end of the line as CJ passed along his microphone. A calm female voice now spoke over the headset. Peanut's eyes widened a little. He recognized her in an instant.

“Well, well, well, looks like we get to be partners once more.” Alana spoke. “You made things a lot easier on my boss last year, giving that briefcase away was a smart move.”

Peanut was speechless.

“Look if you're still mad at me about your kid, I understand but there are more important things at hand...”

“Important things? What are you trying to pull here? You're a wanted criminal for killing all of those pets, and almost killing my friend, and my putting my son in danger. I'm supposed to believe you can help me?”

“Yes, yes you are. Because your little coon over here has a nice set up and all, but it's nowhere near as good as anything the government has to offer.” Alana replied. Peanut could just see her little smirk in his mind. “Come on partner...”

“Don't...” Peanut snapped, only to notice all eyes were on him. “...stop me now! I'm having such a good time...da da da da...

Peanut tried his hardest to look like he was singing. He was met by a few odd stares, but they simply went back to their own business. Peanut sighed and began to whisper again.

“Don't call me partner, we are not partners.”

“You don't have a choice. If my higher-ups want you gone, they can make you gone. So either we can be friends, or we can be enemies. What's it gonna be?”

Peanut was still for a moment. What would Grape think when she found out? Besides, the idea of working with a criminal was beyond ludicrous. But he did know that she was not afraid to hit people where it hurt. He took a deep breath and nodded. Though she could not see it.

“Fine, partners.”

“I knew you'd warm up. Have fun talking to that...wife...of yours.” Alana said, even she seemed to be afraid of the notion of Grape knowing. “Nice singing voice by the way. Never knew you were a Queen fan. I'm a bit of one myself.”

“Believe me it's probably the last thing we have in common.” Peanut muttered. Alana chuckled a little and made a smooching noise over the phone.

“It's going to be fun working with you people. I can just see the memories we will make together. But I must get going, stay in touch will you? Ciao!”

The line other end went silent. Peanut slumped in his seat and looked around himself. His excitement had died in one fell swoop. How on earth did he end up working with her? He shook his head and rubbed his temples.

Fun was not the word he would use to describe his situation, that was for certain.


~~

Oh my goodness guys I am so very sorry for the long wait for this next chapter! I hit the pinnacle of distractions. In the time since my last update I've experienced my own little romantic story, got a new job with lots of hours, among other things that are excuses. But I didn't completely forget about the story. I just hope people are still interested in reading it. :lol:

Thanks for your patience and as always happy reading.

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Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:43 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Whooooo! I wasn't sure I was going to like this arc, but I am 100% in approval now. :D
So many awesome goings-on in this chapter, can't wait for more!

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Tue Jul 16, 2013 4:30 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
OMG!! I can't believe you're going to continue this! Thank god you came back, sir. I missed you and your fic. :D

Hehe, you don't know how much I love Alana, I don't know why but girls with strong personalities were always my debility. XD
What a weird team has been formed, and surely Grape is gonna freak out when she find out. :lol:

Now I wonder how Snow will react when she finds out that Jon revealed their date to Tarot, and worse, that she is intervening on it (their date is not gonna be as private as she was expecting it seems X3).

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Glad that you're back!

Can't wait to read the next chapter (no pressure, by the way). XD Didn't expect that call from Alana, should have known that from the title.

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Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:17 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
*hugs* UBERYAY!!! Not only you're back, but back in style and with a ton o' goodness! Best part of this episode: Tarot and Jon talking about his date, this promises to be sooo interesting. :D :D :D :D
...And you really want to make sure that Alana gets a good dose of Karma, eh? :mrgreen:

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!
ONE OF MY EXTRAS FINALLY APPEARS!!!!!!!
EVEN IF ITS ONLY FOR LIKE 30 SECONDS!!!!!
YAAAAAAAA!!!!!

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
I was excited to see you back. I'm sorry I had to wait about a week before I got to reading it.

gotta say, you've got Luna's personality spot on

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Mon Jul 22, 2013 3:49 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
You know, I was thinking that it's been a while since last time we saw Arcana and Kitsune and I was wondering if we'll ever see them again.

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Finally I get to read this! Good job on everything. I know I won't be hearing from him for a while, but don't forget about Torii! :?


Nice going Alana. She does need some kind of comeuppance, as does Pete. Jerks need it sometimes. :roll:

I do not want to be Peanut right now, even if he IS the Rick Griffin of this universe... Grape will destroy the city in one night when she finds out!!

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
I was thinking that it would be interesting if Peanut doesn't tell Grape about Alana and she suspects that he is cheating on her. Peanut receives continuous calls from Alana and meets with her secretly, feeding Grape's paranoia and bringing their marriage to an extremely tense situation. Then Peanut will feel cornered having to choose between save his marriage, his career (hence, family stability) or the future of animalkind. He should play well his cards if he wants to save all what is precious to him.

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Housepets: Pet Project

9. Let the Games Begin...almost

The afternoon sun lingered behind a thin set of clouds for a moment or two, only for the hot summer winds to brush them away. Lupa raised a paw in front of her eyes, squinting as the sun reemerged. She took a small swig from her bottled water and sighed.

“Can I trust you for five minutes?” Said Lupa.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah, look kid I don't need a babysitter. This is all backwards, I'm supposed to be watching pups!” Said Jack, the one armed wolf scratched the stub where his arm once was. He stood just inside the house. All to aware of his boundaries.

“It's not my fault you happened to 'find' all the neighbors stuff, try and sell it, and end up on house arrest.”

“They shouldn't have left it on the front lawn if they wanted it!”

“And you somehow didn't see the giant moving truck?” Said Lupa. She rolled her eyes and put her hands on her hips. “You know if it wasn't for you, mom wouldn't want me back here watching her little brother while they get to do all the fun stuff! I was looking forward this whole pet city thing.”

Jack grumbled to himself and tugged at the flashing collar now fastened to his ankle. He seemed like a pup on a leash rather than a thief on house arrest. He yawned and licked his chops before walking to the couch and propping his feet up on the coffee table.

“It's not like you had to stay. That parole officer person shows up to check on me.” Jack shrugged.

“He doesn't take you seriously. At least that's what mom says. If I left you alone you'd figure out some crafty way out of that little...ankle bracelet contraption.”

“Okay then, where do you need to go for five whole minutes?” Said Jack. The wolf scratched his chest and examined his claws. Picking his teeth occasionally with his index claw.

“I just need to go check on something, it's errand type stuff.” Lupa replied. “You won't do anything stupid will you?”

The she-wolf took a conservative sip of her water. Jack's eyes were glazed with indifference. She could just tell he was waiting for her to go. Waiting for that exact moment when she disappeared from sight. Jack sat up in his seat a little and chuckled.

“What's so funny?” Lupa asked.

“Nothing, just wondering if your errands have anything to do with that little bother of yours.” Said Jack. His white teeth glimmered in the light as he smiled.

“Like I said, just errand stuff.” Lupa rolled her eyes and turned to walk away. Jack laughed to himself and reached over for the television remote.

Lupa shut the door behind her and rubbed her temples. That uncle of hers was starting to give her a headache. The she-wolf took a tentative step from the shade provided by her house and onto the scorching sidewalk. She was ready to down her bottled water in seconds. The survivalist in her said otherwise.

Just a few sips here or there. She kept a brisk jogging pace down the block. Cars passed by her on occasion, a pet or two could be seen hiding beneath the solid shade of the taller trees that populated the neighborhood. Left, right, left, straight. She was almost where she needed to be.

Her ears perked up when she saw the familiar house. She had been there so many times the past year that it almost felt like a home away from home. Lupa jogged to the front door and held her paw up to knock. Her fist was inches away from striking the hardwood door when a loud crash shook the air around her. She heard a groan and some muffled curses.

Lupa smiled to herself and ran to the fence surrounding the house. She clambered up the side, taking a quick peek into the Sandwich household's backyard. Her eyes looked down to find a white furred pup struggling to lift a heavy cauldron of sorts back up. Lupa hopped over the fence and grasped one end.

“Need a hand?”

Jon stopped for a moment and blushed. “No I've got it.”

“Are you sure about that?”

“Oh quite sure.” Jon grunted and growled as he pushed and pulled. Lupa leaned over and helped him anyways. While Jon looked a little annoyed, he did not reject the help. Jon paused for a moment and blushed even harder, feeling suddenly inadequate before the capable she-wolf.

“Thanks.” He said.

“No probs.” Lupa smiled, taking a look into the cauldron. “What's the deal with all this? Trying to make a witch's brew or something?”

“Actually I'm supposed to be cleaning out cauldrons. This is my second one.”

“Why are you cleaning out cauldrons?” Lupa looked at Jon and tilted her head.

“Oh...uh...to pass the time.” Jon shrugged. The pup grabbed a rag and a spray bottle filled to the brim with a lime-green liquid. He hoisted himself inside the cauldron and sprayed the inner walls, wiping as he did so.

“That's exactly the kind of stuff I do when I'm bored.” Lupa chuckled.

“And I completely appreciate the sarcasm.” Jon said, his voice echoing inside the cauldron.

Lupa frowned a little. Had he still not gotten over it? “You know, it has been awhile, and I haven't been able to leave the house lately. Just thought it might be nice to have some company.”

Jon poked his head out of the cauldron. “...tonight?”

“If you don't mind.”

“I...uh...” Jon blushed and climbed back into the cauldron, “I have plans tonight.”

“Plans?” Lupa folded her arms. Now that was something she didn't expect from someone who was so bored he was cleaning cauldrons. He was avoiding her wasn't he? She was starting to get a little annoyed. “Jon, I know things didn't exactly go your way between us. But we can still be friends right?”

“Of course we can!” Jon jumped from the cauldron again. “...well I mean...sure friends sounds okay. I really do have plans tonight, though, maybe tomorrow night?”

Lupa sighed and nodded. “Alright Jon, tomorrow.”

Jon nodded and slid back into the cauldron. Spraying and wiping away. Lupa took a few steps away from the cauldron, thinking to herself just what sort of plans Jon had. She had a sneaking suspicion the dog was not over her yet. He was trying to avoid her. It almost hurt in a way. Why did he have to like her like that? Couldn't there just be normal friendships? She shook her head and jumped over the fence. She took a few steps away from the house, when the door to the backyard opened. Her ears perked up, it was the pomeranian. The death-talker. Lupa took light footsteps back to the fence and pressed her ear against the side.

Her breathing sounded a little rushed, like she was bothered. What concerning news did she have?

“Jon, I've some bad news about your little...outing this evening.” Said Tarot. “Come inside, we need to chat for a moment.”

Jon jumped out of the cauldron and stumbled into the house. Lupa was now more curious than ever. Why was this outing so important to hide? She looked around a bit and slipped beneath the window. It was open just a crack, just enough for her to catch their voices.

Jon stretched and yawned. His neck was stiff from being inside cauldrons for a few hours. It was nice to have actual elbow room. Tarot led Jon to the living room and sat on the couch. Sitting in the living room was none other than Arcana, it had been awhile since he had seen her!

“Hey Arcana, what brings you here?”

She gave him a soft smile and looked at Tarot. “I don't exactly bring good news.”

“Fine, let's crush my dreams and get it over with.” Said Jon, trying his hardest not to sound too nervous.

“Oh I don't aim to crush your dreams. As a matter of fact we're trying to work in your favor, with the given circumstances.” Arcana replied, she took a sip of tea that was sitting on the table. Jon tilted his head.

“Turns out I'm not all that free today.” Said Tarot. “It's time for a yearly check-up, just to make sure I've been on my best behavior. If I don't show up, I'll have my powers revoked and I'll be back on probation.”

Jon sighed and nodded. Just his luck, now it was impossible to mask his disappointment. “Well...thanks anyways. I will try and figure something else out. Oh...do I still have to clean cauldrons?”

“Now you're getting ahead of yourself Jon. I did say I was trying to work around it didn't I?” Arcana rolled her eyes and ruffled the fur atop Jon's head. “We're waiting on a friend of ours, hoping he can pull some strings.”

Where do they get these connections? Jon had to wonder. Perhaps it was better that he didn't know. Though now he was trying to imagine what strange creature was about to walk through his front door. Or would it even walk through the front door?

Would it be disguised? Or would it even bother?

A sharp series of knocks shook him from his thoughts. Tarot was already answering the door.

Meanwhile, Lupa was trying her best to hide in the bushes. A sudden visitor had pulled up to the curb. It was a limo, she almost thought it was the Miltons! But the person that stepped out was no ferret. He was humbly dressed, or rather, not dressed at all. She could smell that death-talker scent all over him.

The door opened, and now the pomeranian was standing at the threshold.

“You're finally here! Come on, get in here.” Tarot snapped, the fox at the doorstep chuckled a little and stepped into the house.

“Fashionably late as per usual.” Arcana said, upon seeing her old friend.

Jon was shocked, and at the same time relieved. The fox before him was by no means a beast of eldtritch origin. He was quite familiar though. “Wait a second, the Hijinx cereal mascot is your special friend?”

“The one and only.” The fox took a bow of sorts and smiled at the dog. “And you are the dog formerly known as Marshmallow right?”

“How did you know my shelter name?”

“Oh I know quite a bit about you. I'm a bit of a psychic myself.” Kitsune smiled before patting the dog on the head. “And from what I understand you've landed yourself in the midst of some girl trouble.”

“You could say that.” Jon replied.

“Now, I know what you're thinking. What does an eons old millionaire playboy want to do with some kid's love life?”

“Actually-”

“Well let's just say I like the dragon, and for some reason the dragon likes you.” Kitsune reached behind Jon's ear and pulled out a small charm dangling from a necklace. “Oh, I specialize in cheap magic tricks too. It's a hobby of mine.”

Kitsune placed the charm in Jon's paw. The dog looked at it for a moment, it appeared to be some cheap gift shop trinket. Jon looked up at the fox, who chuckled a little.

“Give it a try before you head out on your date, might spice things up a little.” Said Kitsune. The fox gave Jon a gentle pat on the shoulder and walked towards Arcana. “Now would you like that ride or not?”

“Right, thanks again Kitsune.”

“Hey what can I say. I'm a nice guy sometimes.” Kitsune leaned in and whispered in her ear. “You do owe me big time for that charm though.”

“Yeah, yeah I know.” Arcana nodded a little before heading towards the door with the Kitsune. Tarot wasn't too far behind.

Lupa held her breath and watched the group of psychics step from the Sandwich front porch. She sighed with relief as they moved just out of earshot. Kitsune paused for a moment, a smile crossed his lips as he jogged to the bushes in front of the house.

“Oh, you might want to go check on your uncle...” He whispered before running back to the limo.

Lupa had no time to react. Her heart stopped a little as she realized what had just happened. Then her heart started to race. Uncle Jack! She slipped out from the bushes and made a b-line straight for her house.

Just inside. Jon jumped, he swore he had just heard the bushes in his front yard rustle to life. He ran to his window, but he saw nothing. Now he was all alone again. Ever so curious about the little gift shop necklace. His mind began to race. What did it do? It frightened him in a way. His curiosity got the best of him though, as he fastened the necklace around his neck. He expected a flash of light, or a big magical blast of energy.

Much to his dismay, no such light show. Not even a twinkle. He slumped into a couch and sighed. Wondering what the darn little charm was supposed to do. He didn't even get a few basic instructions. The dog laid his paws on the charm, he felt his tail flick a little with annoyance.

“Okay, I'll take us to Uncle Max's place. I'm sure he can make a private room for us.” Jon laid down on the couch and stared at the ceiling. “I suppose I'd better call...”

Jon stood from the couch and walked across the living room. He tried to remember where he had last set his cellphone. He could have sworn he left it on the coffee table in the living room. Then again, his day had been spent worrying about his date. Where was the last place he had left it?

He went down his mental checklist, starting from them to the kitchen, and next the bedrooms and his living room. He took a moment to think, where had he not checked?

“Oh dang it's in the bathroom!” Jon exclaimed.

He ran to the upstairs bathroom and threw open the door. Sitting there on the counter was his little cellphone. He scooped it up in his paws and smiled. “And there it...is...”

He caught a sight of himself in the mirror. He held up one paw, and his reflection did the same. He looked back at his tail and gasped. A smile crossed his lips as he grabbed it and flicked it. Now that was a sudden turn of events, and it opened up his options in ways he could never have imagined.

~~

It was relatively early in the morning in that part of the world. Computer monitors flickered to life one at a time. Live footage of various homes and businesses came to life. At the press of a button, microphones switched on in each location.

“...and we are online. Pet Paradise is live.” Said George Tarquin. His dull
black hair fanned across his forehead.

“Good Doctor Tarquin, now we get to the meat of this little experiment.” Said Keene. The ferret was seated on a high chair of sorts so that he could better see the monitors. “What's the approximate time the pets will begin their orientation.”

“Ten, maybe eleven minutes tops.” Tarquin replied. He glanced at his watch and looked back up at the monitors.

“Alright, I am going to check up on security. You have things under control here, I assume?”

“Of course, monitors can get a little tough on the eyes but I think my insurance will cover it.”

“Nice to know.” Keen jumped from his seat and left Doctor Tarquin to his own devices.

The ferret now found himself navigating a series hallways. Various employees walked throughout the halls. Scientists of all sorts, running to their positions in all parts of the facility. Keene clambered up a small stepping ladder set up beside a digital keyboard. He punched in a few digits and the door unlocked. The thunderous sound of a crowd murmuring with excitement filled the air.

Keene found himself situated in a press box of sorts. Miles was looking out of a window into a large open area of pets, situated in the middle of town-square. The wolf was decked out in the security team vest. His ID dangled from his neck on a lanyard.

“And here we have the best seats in the house. How does it feel to be the eyes of the city?” Said Keene.

Miles shrugged. “A little stressful. I liked it better when I was just watching over your estate. Way less people for me to worry about.”

“I wouldn't have picked you for this job if I didn't think you were capable, Mr. Head-of-Security.” Keene took his seat and pulled a drink, seemingly from nowhere. “I knew I should have brought some popcorn.”

“Is this all a game to you?” Said Miles.

“Nope, more like a movie.” Keene looked at the wolf and took a sip.

~~

Peanut readjusted his shirt a little and looked down at his toes. It was odd how well the clothes fit. They were tailored for a pet. A tail hole cut in just the right spot. Not one hastily made from a human child's clothes. Still, it felt weird to see a crowd of pets now in clothes.

Grape was sitting on her suitcase on the ground beside him. Messing around with her phone. She wanted to check on the boys, but no calls would go through. Even though the signal bars were filled.

“You okay down there?” Peanut looked down at Grape and smiled.

“I'm just fine, but the phone won't make any calls.” She muttered, most of her attention dedicated to the small cellular device.

“Here, I'll try mine.” Said the dog. He reached for his neck and rolled his eyes. He was no longer wearing a collar, it had been turned in at a security checkpoint. He reached down to pockets of his new pants and pulled out his phone.

He went straight for his contacts and called Jon's phone.

“Nope, not on mine either.” Peanut shook his head. There wasn't even a dial tone.

“Great, my house could be on fire and I won't even be able to know.” Said Grape. She stuffed her phone back in her pocket and stood back up. “I think they made these clothes a little form fitting than yours.”

“I don't mind the view.” Peanut shrugged and smiled.

Grape rolled her eyes and lightly punched Peanut's arm. “If you weren't my husband I would knock you out.”

“Lucky me then.” Peanut hugged her. He took the glasses from the bridge of his muzzle and sighed. They were smudged once again. He wiped them on his new shirt and looked around himself.

All of a sudden, piercing microphone feedback whistled through the air. The crowd of animals yowled and murmured in confusion. Peanut squinted a little and looked up to a tower erected in town-square. Loudspeakers were perched at every angle.

“Is...is it on? Is it working?” Keene's voice tumbled from the speakers. “Ah hello all! I do apologize for your delayed flight. There were some technical difficulties here on the island. But that's all behind us! Things should be back on schedule.”

Keene cleared his throat and took a sip of something. The sound of paper shuffling could be heard. “Ahem, welcome to your Paradise Island orientation. Inside the bag that contained your new clothing you should find a colored folder.”

Peanut bent over and pulled the folder from its sleeve. It was a light blue color. Grape's was the exact same color. A sea of colored folders now made their mark in the crowd. He could count four different colors. Red, yellow, blue, and green.

“Judging by the sudden addition of color to this crowd I assume you have all found your folder. This is your orientation group for the day. Let us all take a moment to divide to the four corners of town square. Your guide should be wearing a vest of the same color.”

Suddenly four wolves wearing vests appeared at the four corners. Pets scrambled quickly to their places. Peanut carefully pushed his way through the crowd of pets. Now moving his direction. He could spy the wolf in blue just ahead.

“Rudy?” Peanut exclaimed.

The guide's ears perked up. He looked over to Peanut and waved.

“Hey! Mr. Sandwich! What are the odds, you're in my group.” Rudy ran over to Peanut like an excited pup and hugged him. He seemed relieved to see a familiar face. “Hope the delay didn't mess with you guys too much.”

“I've had worse.” Peanut shrugged and smiled. “You seem awfully happy to see me.”

“It's been a long grueling set of days. Security teams had to go through boot camp. I almost wish I didn't come.” Rudy sighed and looked around the crowd. More blue folders were appearing left and right.

“Hold on a second, you know this wolf?”

Peanut turned to his right and nearly bit his tongue. Instead of Grape standing next to him, it was Luna.

“Wait, where's my wife?” Said Peanut.

“I dunno, and you still didn't answer my question.”

“Oh...this guy is friends with my son back home.” Peanut shrugged. “Now where is-”

“Hey Peanut! Glad to see you're in blue group too.” There came another familiar face. Knife jogged towards the group, excited to see friendly faces. “Would you believe I was all the way at the red group? I got caught behind this big great dane and his buddy.”

“At least you made it before the orientation kicked off.” Rudy nodded. “Seems like you're popular around here Mr. Sandwich.”

“You two-”

“Know eachother? Yes Knife, we do.” Peanut nodded.

“Oi mis dios, how did I end up with you again?” Lexter groaned. So very loud in fact, that Peanut was certain red group could hear.

“Lexie! We're group-mates!” Luna ran to Spanish water dog. A smug grin on her face, her body poised to pounce.

“Don't even think about hugging me. I've had too long of a day to tolerate this anymore.” Lexter held up a finger and glared. Luna only seemed to be even more amused by his threats.

“I think I'm starting to see a pattern here...” Peanut looked around himself. Scanning for the crowd for that one larger dog he had met on the plane. Somehow he wasn't seeing the beast of a dog. Or his wife for that matter. “Nice to see you guys again, but have you seen...”

“Your wife? She's right here.”

Peanut jumped and turned. Amadieu was standing over him. How could such a big dog be so quiet? Grape was at his side, her arms folded and her face a little stern.

“Thanks for running off without me back there.” Said Grape. Her calm voice did little to mask her annoyance.

“Sorry, got caught up in the moment.” Peanut gave her a nervous smile.

Lextor rolled his eyes as the dog and cat couple started their bickering. He felt like some divine being had laid eyes upon him and decided he wasn't having a bad enough day. Of course, he still had to admit that being in the pet city was exciting. Even if he was sharing it with cats. He certainly hoped that he could sleep somewhere far away from Luna, who seemed all too thrilled at his displeasure of her presence. He tried to slip away from the cat, but that proved to be a bad idea.

The Spanish water dog turned and crashed head first into a wall of fur. He stumbled backwards and looked up to see Torii. The Tibetan Mastiff looked down at Lextor, not unlike how one would stare at an ant. Lextor kept his cool and stood back up, taking notice of the blue folder in Torri's hand.

“I apologize for that, I wasn't paying attention.” Said Lextor.

“Don't know why you're apologizing, you were hurt more than me.” Torii spoke in a low voice, even then it seemed to carry over the crowd. Lextor opened his mouth to speak, but Torii was already walking past him and heading towards the rest of the group.

Rudy glanced down at his clipboard and then back up at the pets. “Looks like we have everyone...let's get this show on the road people. Have a lot to see and only so little time.”

~~

“What are you getting yourself into? Why did you open your big mouth?”

Snow gave herself a long hard look in the bathroom mirror. Perhaps it was pre-date jitters, but she looked a little rough around the edges. She had not gotten very much sleep the night before. The idea of going on a date, let alone with a dog, did not sit well with her.

How, of all the creatures in the universe, did Jon Turkey Sandwich convince her to go with him?

In the back of her mind she could still see those big, dewy, puppy dog eyes staring into the very fiber of her soul. Tugging at her heartstrings. It took all of her strength not to say: “aww.” She sighed and slumped off of the bathroom counter.

“Just one date. That's all. And it won't be anymore different than just hanging out.” Said Snow, once again to herself. She grimaced and paused. “Yeah, just keep telling yourself that.”

She was, little by little, falling for the dog. It was driving her nuts. She had been hanging around too many odd couples. They were rubbing off on her. Not even a year ago did she resent all things canine. They were dumb, slobbering oafs with a penchant for cat chasing. Not her ideal date.

Then again she could not see herself really dating any of the cats she had met in the neighborhood either. She tufted the fur upon her head a little and walked away from the mirror. Things could not be so bad. Jon always aimed to please. Especially people he liked. She would at least get a decent meal out of the ordeal. Snow walked down stairs. Right past Fido, who was busy scanning through a report from work. His ears perked up, the police dog turned towards Snow and tilted his head.

“Hey you're out. Thought you fell down the drain or something.” Fido chuckled. “You're looking a little spruced up, what's the occasion?”

“Just...wanted to look nice I guess.” Snow shrugged.

“Right.” Fido looked back at his report.

“You don't believe me?” Snow folded her arms.

“Now, now, I never said that.” Fido said with a smirk. “You seem kinda skittish lately as well. You're doing anything illegal are you?”

“No of course not.” Snow rolled her eyes.

“No? Then why so worried?”

“You don't need to interrogate me officer Byron.” Replied Snow.

“I'm just asking making an observation is all.” Said Fido. “I don't think I've ever seen you willingly pretty up for anything.”

Snow sighed and looked over at her adoptive father. The dog was not going to stop pestering her until he received a satisfying answer.

“Just going to go hangout tonight. Wanted to look decent in public.” Said Snow, after a moment of careful thought.

Fido shrugged, that answer would have to do. He nodded and went back to reading his reports while Snow could breath easy. Now that she had lied her way through that mess, it was time to do it again several times throughout the day. She pulled her cellphone from her collar and thumbed through her speed dial. There were not that many numbers to sift through before she found Jon's. She pressed the green call button and looked around herself. Checking to see if there might be any open ears about her.

“Oh stop it...you're being paranoid.” She whispered to herself. Meanwhile the dial tone buzzed in her ears. It took a bit, but Jon answered.

“H-hello, Jon Sandwich speaking.” Said Jon.

“Hey Jon...is everything alright? You sound flustered.” Snow replied.

“I've never been better! Look, I hope you won't be mad. But I phoned in some help for our date.” Jon replied.

“Jon! What did I say?” Snow hissed into the phone.

“Relax, it was just Tarot and her friends. I found the perfect solution to our date problem.”

“Funny you should mention this whole date thing, look I'm not sure...”

“It's so crazy and you just won't believe if I tell you. Please come straight over so I can show you. You won't be disappointed, I promise.” Jon did not even seem to be paying attention to Snow. She sighed and looked up at the sky. He sounded so excited to show her whatever it was. Inside she felt herself want to cancel. Tell the dog she changed her mind.

“Well, I-” Snow closed her mouth for moment and bit her bottom lip. Cursing that little pang of guilt she could feel gnawing somewhere in the back of her skull. “I'll be right over. But this better worth breaking our little deal.”

“Trust me, it's so awesome, you might love it more than I do.”

“We'll see.” Said Snow.

“Okay, see you in a minute then. I'm going to get ready. Later!”

“La-” Snow began, but Jon had hung up. “-ter...”

She shook her head and tucked the cellphone back into her collar. The faster she made it to the Sandwich house, the less time she had to over-think her decision. Still her mind found the time for it. Why had none of the other times they were hanging been considered dates? Could this be any worse than fooling around with him at his house on some video game?

That might have been the surprise. A new video game. Jon always seemed to get flustered and excited about new toys like that. Still, it would not involve going into the public. That was a plus. She could just date him in the sanctity of an enclosed structure. Away from the prying eyes of a few devious minds.

Not that she had the greatest standing relationship with any cat floating around Babylon Gardens. Even in pet-lover paradise she seemed so alone among the rest of the Garden's denizens. She had made her way to all of the cat hangouts before. Heathcliff's was nice, but a little expensive now that it was a lucrative chain restaurant. Max's place was nice as well, but the place was full of older cats looking to hangout. Not really anyone her age. The most recent place she discovered was where younger crowd would always hangout. It was just an alleyway by Summerhill lane, like how pets used to hangout. It was situated between some shoe store and an old dog food factory that had been shut-down three months prior.

Much to her chagrin, the crowd there seemed to be the clique-zombie type of cats. Shuffling around in their little groups, snacking on stuff they brought with them. Picnicking about with friends. It was made apparent that there was not very much room for a cat like her.

“Oh you're the dog-lover's kid aren't you?” One cat said. Then all of the cats there realized who she was. “Yeah I think you are, and you're always with that weird dog that tries to act like a cat.”

“What's it to you?” Snow replied.

“Nothing. We don't tolerate butt-sniffing around these parts though, so don't get any ideas.” The cat chuckled. A group of his friends sniggered. Snow ignored their taunts, but at night she would roll the thoughts around in her head. Every time she found herself next to Jon in public, she could hear those mild taunts dig at her from the back of her mind.

Somewhere, she could just imagine that cat and his friends sniggering at her. Taunting and getting all the wrong ideas. Making up stories about how she too must be a dog-lover. She would try and make it seem like she was just a cat that happened to be friends with a dog, but those other cats only heard what they wanted to hear.

Snow took a deep breath and watched for cars before crossing the street. Against her gut instinct, even after the dog-lover comments, she still went back to Summerhill. All she had was a really strange dog friend. No one else was like her. No cats out there had her interests, all of the toms her age treated like some weird cursed object. Even the girls would steer away from her, like she would ruin their chances of being accepted.

She finally stopped in front of the Sandwich household. Her mind now switched gears. What was Jon going to throw at her? She rapped on the door with her paw and waited a moment. Her ears twitched a little, she could hear someone shuffling from upstairs. It sounded like Jon.

“Hey, is that your doggy boyfriend's house?”

Snow felt a chill run up her back. She turned around and saw that cat from the other night. He was sitting on the branch of a tree. Had he followed her? The thought creeped her out. Were his friends somewhere in the bushes? She almost wanted to cry, here she was, about to be humiliated further. The door knob turned and pulled back.

She had to stifle a gasp, the cat watching from the tree almost looked disappointed. He jumped from his branch and toddled off somewhere. Perhaps he wanted to go cause trouble for some other poor cat. Snow didn't care. She was speechless.

“Ta-dah! You like?” Jon posed a little. Though it was not the Jon she was used to seeing. No, standing before her was far different from a dog. The tail much more flexible, his muzzle much shorter. Snow was staring at a spotted feline that sounded like Jon.

“I have to admit. You really did surprise me.” Snow finally found her words.

“Who was that guy out there anyways?” Jon peeked around Snow and tilted his head.

“Nobody special.” Snow shrugged. Still trying to take in what she was looking at.

“Oh, well come on in! I was on the web trying to figure out good places for us to hangout near by. I even devised a cover story.” Jon grabbed her paw and pulled her into the house. “I'm your friend form your old neighborhood and I'm visiting. I even went through my mom's old collars and stuff and got a fish-tag to help me blend in better. Anywho, I think we should go to this cool place called by Summerhill.”

“Summerhill?” Snow was suddenly snapped from her trance.


“Yeah, you heard of the place?” Jon asked.

“Been there once or twice.” Said Snow. Though it had really been more like five or six times.

“What's wrong? You don't sound all that thrilled.” Said Jon as he pulled up a few windows on his computer screen.

“It's nothing, I'm just a little, surprised is all.” Snow looked up and down Jon again.

The taboo was gone, even if it might have been some cheap parlor magic, it was no longer weird to know him. She smiled a little at him and poked his muzzle. Just to see if it was real. Jon jumped a little and chuckled, and Snow had found that his muzzle was as real as her own.

“You don't give me looks like that normally, is being a cat that big of a difference.” Jon blushed a little and smiled.

“It's a huge difference.” Snow nodded.”To tell you the truth I was worried about going on a date with a dog. I mean, I like you and all Jon as a friend, you're nice. But...”

“People would treat you different if we dated like normal.” Jon looked down.

“Right, and I don't feel like dealing with stuff like that. It's the last thing I need on my plate.” Snow sighed. And placed a paw on his cheek. Still trying to test the boundaries of this illusion. She knew it had to be just that. Somehow, someway, she was being fooled.

But she felt some pent up feelings tell her not to care. After being around him for so long, he always seemed to be her go-to guy for fun and adventure. Even if she did think he did stupid things sometimes. It was better than staying home and doing nothing. Not to mention, he treated her like she was normal. Better yet, they looked normal.

“Tarot's friend had the right idea with this kind of help then.” Jon nodded. “I hope we can have a good time.”

Once again there was a slight pang of guilt in the back of Snow's mind. This was not how Jon was supposed to be, and he had went out and changed himself just so he could make her happy. What did it matter though? Jon seemed happier as a cat anyway.

“Trust me, if we go to Summerhill, it will be fun.” Said Snow. “And for the record, you aren't a bad looking cat. Just careful with the tail wagging. That kind of thing means something different to cats.”

Jon blushed and made a conscious effort to stop his tail from moving. He held his thumb up and nodded, a smile on his lips. The dog looked down at his neck and saw the little tacky charm dangling in front of his collar. He could not believe what was happening. Snow was acting so much more different.

She was not as grouchy now, nor did she seem to insult his intelligence as often. In fact she almost seemed to be flirting with him in a way. Maybe he was just reading way too far into what she was saying. Reading too far or not, she had eased up her attitude.

In her mind she did not have to care what others thought. To them she would be with a cat. The added benefit? She would never admit it to anyone, including herself, but she had liked him a bit before. It was unfortunate that fear was always a deciding factor. Fear of dogs, fear of what others might think, fear of falling head-over-heels, fear that Jon might just be rebounding.

While not all of her fears had disappeared that evening, she was still happy to feel a load lifted from her shoulders. She found herself catching glimpses, but not trying to stare. Little by little the charm was working its magic on them both.

Jon looked up for a moment. A strange feeling had overcome him. Were there any side effects perhaps? He really did not think so. Why was he wearing the charm again? He paused for a moment to think, of course, he was really a dog. A dog with a magic charm necklace that fixed his problems with Snow in one fell swoop. He was most definitely a dog for real.

Right?
~~

Welp there's another chapter done. Sorry this is so slow going. I'm almost to a point where the writing and the story picks up further, so you might expect faster updates. Then again, I haven't been all that reliable lately have I? :lol:

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Fri Aug 30, 2013 3:43 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
An update? O_O YEHEY!!! *throws confetti*

I was expecting some sort of a cliff hanger or something similar for Jon's story. Good thing it wasn't, or I wouldn't be able to sleep until the next few weeks.

I sense further chaos for those in the Pets Paradise. :lol:

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Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:26 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
believe me when I say that, with such fine quality, it's all worth it! :D

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
YAY!! Another update!! You made my day! I'm so happy! :D

Hehe, it seems that Peanut has become rather popular among the pets taking part on this project. Now I wonder how Alana and CJ are going to move inside the city. Could it be fake identities or perhaps some sort of magic like the one Jon is using now?

Good to see Alana and Kitsune again! (and thank you for hearing my suggestion ^^). Hehe, Fido and Snow have a father-daughter relationship rather masochistic (I love it! :lol: ). And I glad to see that the date is running smoothly though even if Jon is disguised as a cat, a secret like this would never last. Will Snow accept him as a dog when that happens? And what Lupa will do when she finds out that these two are dating?

GeckoZY wrote:
I was expecting some sort of a cliff hanger or something similar for Jon's story. Good thing it wasn't, or I wouldn't be able to sleep until the next few weeks.


Same here, though he still got us in a sort of cliffhanger since we don't know what kind of side effect could cause this kind of magic.

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
"Uh, John? Since when you liked using the scratching pole?"

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
By the way, what would think Denver of his brother now that he is a cat?

valerio wrote:
"Uh, John? Since when you liked using the scratching pole?"


Fixed XD

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
give in to your inner cat, Jon. You'll be able to be with Snow, and you'll fit in with cats better than you did with dogs

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Housepets: Pet Project

10. A Night to Remember (part 1)

He was hallucinating. That was the only explanation. Just outside his bedroom window, Denver could see Snow and some other cat walking side-by-side on the sidewalk. Not just any cat, a male cat, one that happened to be holding her hand.

And she was not clawing him.

Such a sight relieved him in the weirdest way. She decided not to date Jon. She decided to hook up with a cat. Now he did not have to watch Jon freak out about some girl all over again, no more being dragged around places just so Jon can hangout with the so-called girl of his dreams. No more getting hurt.

Then he realized that Jon was not going to take another breakup very well. Denver made a mental note not to disturb the main house. Better to just let his brother take the breakup on his own for now. It was much safer to stay and play video games. He tucked his legs beneath himself and resumed his gaming session. The screen roared to life with gunfire and explosions. No parents to tell him to turn the TV down, he was going to get used to this.

He settled into the game a little, getting into the rhythm of blasting online players from across the world. Did not matter if they were human or animal, he was chewing up the competition. Ignoring the raging obscenities uttered by his fellow players. It took him a moment to realize there was a faint vibrating noise coming from somewhere.

He turned down the television and looked around. Somewhere, stuck beneath a book or two, his phone was vibrating. A call was coming his way. Denver tracked the sound and pressed the talk button.

“Hello?” Said Denver, he tucked the phone between his ear and his shoulder. He was already back to playing his game.

“Finally someone who answers...” Lupa muttered over the line.

“Oh, Lupa. How can I help you?” Denver's tongue lolled out of his head in concentration.

“Jon's being weird.'

“What else is new?”

“I mean when I call him, he just seems different. Can't put my finger on it.” Said Lupa. “Is everything okay?”

Denver weighed his options. Since the date that Snow was supposed to have never happened. Would it still have to stay a secret? He was unsure. Somewhere in his backside, he could still feel the effects of dropping the ball on a secret.

“Denver?”

“Okay, something happened between Jon and Snow. I don't want to bug him...” Said Denver, stifling a curse as his virtual character went up in a haze of smoke. “...besides I have important things to do.”

“Like trying to get Lieutenant class?” Said Lupa. Denver stopped for a moment, how on earth did she know? His character died again on screen in his confusion.

“Nope, I'm not playing Combata 6.” Denver shook his head, even if Lupa was not in the room.

“What happened between Jon and Snow?”

“Sorry busy...can't say.”

Lupa went silent on her end of the phone for a moment. Denver was almost afraid. What was going on? He opened his mouth to ask her where she was, but all of a sudden a new player entered the session. Almost at the exact same moment Lupa's voice popped back up on the phone.

“Hey, your screen name on that one game is D.Om-something-or-other right?” Lupa asked over the phone.

“Yeah, that's m-” Denver jumped, at that exact moment his character died on screen. He respawned in-game and moved out to his regular hiding spot. Only for another player to shoot him when he got there. They had been waiting for him there.

“Now what is it that Jon and Snow wanted to do?”

“Look I'm not-” His character was shot and killed again. “...shoot.”

“What's wrong?”

“Nothing.” Denver replied.

“Is someone bogging down your kill streaks and hunting you down?” Said Lupa. Denver felt his eyes grow wide. She was tracking and hunting him in a video game of all things.

“If you want to beat Lucas-22, you will tell me what's up with those two and why he's acting so weird. Otherwise you can kiss top ten leaderboard status goodbye.” Said Lupa. She almost relished the delivery of her ultimatum. Denver squeezed the controller and sighed.

“Fine, Jon and Snow were supposed to go on a date tonight. But Snow left the house with another cat. I think she dropped Jon. I can only imagine Jon is really upset and I don't want to bug him. I think you might want to try the same.” Denver said, he took a deep breath when he finished.

“...she what?” Lupa seemed a little shocked. “I know she has her problems, but that seems a little low, even for her.”

“Not my problem, now stop killing me please and thank you.” Denver muttered. Lupa's profile name disappeared from the roster and the phone went silent. He sighed with relief, now it was time to get back to some serious business.

~~

Jon felt his heart flutter a bit. He was holding hands, on the first date. Was that bad etiquette? Was he doing this whole date thing wrong? Snow did not seem to mind. For good reason. The dog, well cat at the moment, had planted a kiss on her lips before so many nights ago. Hand holding did not seem that big of a deal.

That, and she was getting ready to rub it in those other guy's faces. She could not wait to see the looks she would get at Summerhill. It was a chance to be somewhat normal for once, even if it was a big huge facade. Never the less, Jon seemed to be fitting into his new circumstances better than he was as himself. They worked out the lies for the sake of secrecy.

“Okay, so I'm your friend and my name is...”

“How about John with an 'h?'” Snow laughed a little. Jon chuckled back and shook his head.

“I like the way you think. It's so crazy that no one would suspect a thing.” Jon winked at her and adjusted his collar a bit. He felt so weird. There was a pit in his stomach, and he could swear something was almost whispering in the back of his mind.

Why am I lying again?

Because I am a dog.

Jon repeated that fact to himself over and over again. He was really a dog, he was really a dog, he was really a cat. No, a dog. He was born and raised a dog. Jon shook his head and rubbed his temples. Something was going on, it was like he was forgetting something. It could not be that important if he had already forgotten about it.

“Are you okay?” Snow tilted her head.

He nodded and smiled. “Yeah, I'm fine. Just had the weirdest thought cross my mind.”

“What?”

“Nah, it's nothing special.” Jon shook his head and kept walking. “How long until we get to that Summerhill place?”

“It's not too far. We ” Snow replied.

The two cats made their way along the road. Cars passed by, other pets were busy chatting. It was so weird, not paying her any mind. How good it felt to be invisible.

“You still haven't told me what crossed your mind.”

“Like I said, nothing special. Kinda stupid even.” Jon kept his walking pace. Soon they found themselves at a crossroads. Not too far ahead was the Canine Cibble dog food factory. It had already begun to show signs of disrepair, broken glass windows and graffiti laden walls.

“So what's the harm in telling me?” Snow smirked. Jon couldn't fault that logic. He grasped the magic charm in his paw and felt his whiskers twitch.

“I have the strangest feeling. Like I've forgotten about something.” Jon shrugged.

“If it's about this date, then I think that is just nerves. Goodness Jon even as a cat I can still see the dog in you.”

Dog? Right, he was not a cat. Jon smiled a little and took a deep breath. They were about to be among other cats. He had to keep up a charade of sorts. Yet he could still be himself. After all he was just a cat in dog's clothing any other day of the week. Jon draped his arm around Snow's side, and she did not pull away.

The first few steps through the back alley seemed eerie enough. The waning sunlight cast amorphous shadows along the brick walls. The smell of cats lingered in the air, mixed with old factory waste and dog-food. What an odd place to go hang out.

His ears perked up at the sound of glass rumbling in its pane. Someone had turned up the bass to some speakers. Snow led him further along, the bass grew louder. At a certain point he began to hear the actual music behind the driving bass sounds. He was not all that certain that this place was what he had imagined.

“Snow, can't help but notice this new smell in the air. Think I smelled on Max once...it's not...”

“Catnip? Yeah it is.” Snow looked towards Jon. He seemed a little shocked. If his mom found out he was anywhere near the stuff, his death would be swift. But Jon said nothing. This was going to be an awesome date, he was going to give Snow the time of her life.

She led him to a large metal door, a cat sat on a tall perch made of various old pallets. Poised to pounce upon noticing his new visitors. He jumped to the bottom and looked at them. Jon felt like he was being sized up for a fight. The cat cast a glance at Snow and his eyes lit up for a moment.

“Oh, Snowflake, just you.” The cat relaxed. “Sorry for the scare. Didn't recognize your friend here.”

“Snowflake?” Jon looked at his date and raised his brow. Snow rolled her eyes, typical dog nerves were starting to boil near the surface. She could feel them in his grip.

“Knowing the company you keep at home, I'm quite surprised you brought a cat here.”

“He's a friend I met awhile back.” Snow smiled. “Jon, this is Alphonse.”

“Pleased to meet you.” Jon held out his paw to shake. Alphonse looked at the paw and then back up at Jon. His ear twitched a little, but he said nothing. He walked over to the metal door, a key was now in his paw.

Alphonse unlocked the door and opened it. Jon felt his nose blasted with the thick smell of catnip and sugary drinks. The music was no longer muffled and rumbled in his ears. This was not the place he thought of when he heard Snow talk about it. Not at all.

“Hurry on in, you're letting out the cold air.”

Snow made the first step inside. Jon followed close behind her. The metal door swung shut behind him, the sound of the lock engaging reached his sensitive ears. They made their way into what looked like a distribution center.

Dog food would have been loaded into trucks at one point in time, now it was seemed to be where the guests signed in. For a bunch of guys that were Jon's age, or close to it, they seemed very organized. Jon looked into the guest book and signed his name as 'John S.'

“Who pays for all this stuff?” Jon asked as he stepped away from the guest book.

“Not quite sure. I think someone's parents are involved.” Snow replied.

“Not to sound rude, but this all seems a little shady.” Said Jon.

“It's kinda how Heathcliff's used to run.” Snow shrugged. They made their way to the meat of the hangout. What was once the packing area of the factory. Now a dance hall. Tables were set up and even a place to buy food had been erected. The foreman's office now served as the music center. A professional sound system had been hooked up, and a cat controlled it there from his laptop.

Jon coughed a little and wiped his eyes. The smell was a little strong, he was going to have to take a long bath when me got home. A few cats seemed to notice Snow come in. They made their way through the crowd towards her. She looked at Jon, a mischievous smile was on her lips. That was not a good sign. The cats looked over at Jon, who stared back with wide eyes.

“So Baltic wasn't lying when he said you were seen hanging around another cat.” Said one cat. He looked up and down Jon, a chuckle escaped his lips.

“Snow, why exactly did you recommend this place.” Jon whispered in her ear. She turned to him and sighed.

Just stay calm and play along. Her voice said, speaking from the back of his mind somewhere. He nodded and watched her turn back to the cat.

“He is in fact, my date.” Snow replied.

The whole group of cats were laughing now. Jon felt himself begin to panic. He stifled it as best he could, but he knew they could smell his fear. The leader of this group sized up Jon from a glance and gave him a toothy smile.

“You really must be new, because you'd have to be desperate to go out with this chick.” There was not a friendly vibe in his eyes whatsoever. Now that pushed a button in Jon's head.

“I beg your pardon?” Jon glared a little.

“What, you don't know? She's one of those loons that 'talks with the ghosts.' She's had to have mentioned it. Or what about her living situation, the dog and cat she calls mom and dad?”

Snow looked back at Jon and frowned. See what I deal with?

“Oh, oh, or better yet. That weird dog she keeps hanging out with.” Another cat jumped into the conversation.

“Yeah that freak of nature Sandwich kid that always has the yarn.” The leader chuckled. “How much is she paying you, you've gotta know she's a freak right?”

Before that moment, Jon was not sure whether or not he was irked. After the mention of his actual identity. He felt livid. Even as a cat he was still hearing about how much of a freak he was, even if it wasn't directed at him. Jon chuckled a little with the cats. “You know what's really funny?”

“What?” The leader was still laughing. Jon snagged the cat by the collar and pulled him in close. The cat yowled a little and gasped.

“That, if I broke your nose, it would be a fair improvement to your face.” Jon glared a little. That panic was setting in. What had come over him? Why was he doing this? His body was on autopilot. Even Snow seemed alarmed. “You think you're a real tough guy huh? You want to know tough? I eat fresh deer carcass for breakfast, bet you can smell that on my breath. You can't get that at the super market, if you get my drift.”

Jon felt a tug on his arm as he was dragged away from the cat he was tormenting. Snapping him back to reality. He had a headache all of a sudden. The charm on his neck felt hot against his neck. He looked down at his arm and saw Snow pull him to a table and sit him down. She was smiling like a loon. A look very uncommon for her.

“W-what are you smiling at?” Jon was starting to feel sick. He had just threatened another living creature with brute force. That was not playing for fun, that was playing with prey.

“Okay that got a little crazy for a minute there, but I'm happy.” Snow's looked Jon in the eyes. “Where did that come from?”

“What?”

“The whole 'I'm gonna break your nose' thing?” Snow laughed. “I think your mom is finally rubbing off on you.”

“Well I was just defending my lady's honor.” Jon smiled. Now where did that come from? That's not what he was thinking. He was panicking inside! But the rest of him was not obeying. “What kind of date would I be if I didn't.”

“You watch too many movies.” Said Snow. Regardless of what she had said, Jon could detect a hint of a blush on her cheeks.

Snow could feel her heart flutter a bit. Before, she was not all that sure that Jon being a cat was going to change anything. Somehow it had. The cat she was looking at was not even a glint of the dog he was before. Maybe it was the necklace charm, or maybe it was because she did not feel weird about being attracted to another cat, but Jon had lit off some sparks in her mind.

She had him all to herself too, that was the best part. This change was working out in ways she could not have imagined. Especially this whole new shift in personality.

“So...can I go get you something to drink? Maybe buy some food? I brought cash.” Jon reached into his collar and pulled out a wallet. The cash that it held within was a little present he had received from Tarot.

“Sure.”

“Just sure? Anything you would like specifically.” Jon asked.

“Surprise me.” Snow shrugged. Jon smiled a little and left the table. Odd to say he was liking this new sort of attention.

It felt good to be this way. But it shouldn't feel good, something was wrong. Why care though? If it was all that wrong, then his date would not be going so swell.

Jon's phone began to buzz, he reached into his pocket and answered it.

~~

Lupa did not even think about lecturing her uncle before leaving this time. She was going to get to the bottom of this situation with Jon and Snow. She would have disregarded it, save for those weird animals that had left the home. All that talk about probation and powers.

It gave her chills.

Even if Snow had managed to save King that year before. There was some powerful Death-talker magic in the Sandwich house after that fox had left. She only caught a slight whiff of it before running home, but it was enough to bother her the whole day.

That fox had a strong tie with the spirit world. He absolutely stank of it. And he left something behind that stank of the spirit world. Something that Jon had in his possession. Call it a trust issue, but Lupa was starting to worry for Jon's immortal soul at this point.

She jumped over the fence leading to the Sandwich household's backyard and began knocking on the door. There was no response. Lupa sighed and looked around. It would not be breaking in, she was trying to help a friend. The she-wolf opened the door and stepped into the makeshift house. Denver had left the TV on, and some popcorn was spilled on the floor.

Her powerful nose honed in on Denver's scent. It was time to start tracking him. The door creaked behind her, Lupa flipped around and bared her teeth and claws. Denver yelped and fell on his back.

“Gah! It's me!” Denver cried out.

Lupa cursed under her breath and rubbed her temples. “You scared the heck out of me.”

“I scared you?” Denver snapped. “What are you doing here?”

“I need your help. Did Jon or Snow say where they were going?” Lupa grabbed Denver by the shoulders and looked him in the eyes.

“No, nothing at all.” Denver shook his head. “Why?”

“There is something wrong with Jon.” Said Lupa. “I finally managed to call him again, but something isn't right. Something in his voice and attitude. I know it's him, but at the same time it isn't him. I don't know how to explain it”

“He has been holding onto this weird necklace thing all day today.” Denver squinted in thought. “He never said where he got it from. Just that it was something a friend gave him. A good luck charm for his date.”

That must have been the lingering stink of spirit-world. Lupa paced a little. How would she find Jon? This had to happen somehow. Her mind raced.

“Okay, maybe there are some clues. I would track him from the house here, but that might take too long.”

“Too long for what?”

“Jon's very soul might be in danger. It's just a gut feeling I have.” Lupa shook her head. The cat sighed and looked at his feet. Trying to think of where they could start looking.

“Okay, use that nose of yours to try and find stuff with that...spirit scent you keep going on about. That's bound to lead to some sort of clue.”

Lupa nodded and looked around herself. She would start in the dog's room first. She hoped he would forgive her later, for now instinct was kicking in.

The night was shaping up to be a long one...

~~
Music pounded into his skull, harder and harder. Such heavy techno stuff, his poor sensitive hearing was not used to it. Snow did not seem to mind though. In fact she seemed quite calm amidst the storm that was the Summerhill club. They had been talking to each other like they had first met. This was a part of Snow he was not used to seeing. One so relaxed and happy.

“I remember living in this neighborhood, and the people there were so weird.” Snow rolled her eyes. “I mean pets there were like slaves. They couldn't walk the streets without a leash, and a human companion at all times. Otherwise they were swooped up and taken to the pound. I had a few run ins with the animal-catcher. Got lucky, most others didn't. Makes me kind of happy that those new laws passed.”

“Oh I hear you. Before I was adopted, my mom, well my birth mom, had no say in where I went. Her owners didn't want to take care of a puppy, so I was sent to the pound.” Jon nodded. “Excuse me...kitten.”

“You know it's always those little things that keep reminding me that you weren't always a cat. Feels like you haven't been any other way.” Said Snow. She took a sip of her drink and a bite of fried chicken sitting on a plate they were sharing. “I dunno what they put in this punch stuff, but it tastes good.”

“I think it's peach.” Jon tasted his drink and pondered for a moment. “With a hint of melon.”

They were so into their conversation, that Jon did not realize he was getting some attention. A she-cat or two watched from their table. Taking a gander at the new piece of eye candy that the dog-lover had brought with her. One she-cat was so bold as to walk to their table.

“Hey Snow.” The cat spoke, her tag read 'Rosey.' Snow remembered Rosey, if only a little bit. Most of the tormentors had melded together in her mind. It was odd that one had addressed her by name. The usual name she heard was “Dog-lover.”

“Oh...hi.” Snow did not appreciate having her date interrupted.

“Who's your guy friend.” Rosey looked at Jon and then at Snow.

“A friend from an old neighborhood.” Snow replied. Rosey seemed pleased with that response.

“Just a friend huh? How you liking Babylon Gardens?” She said, her voice bubbly and sweet. In a way, it was like the drink he had placed before him.

“It's nice, if not a little odd. Snow and I were just talking about how different some places used to be. Before all those laws I mean.” Jon sipped his drink and smiled at Snow. She was starting to get annoyed.

“You know, it's been awhile since I've seen a new face 'round here.” Rosey looked around the room. “Especially good looking new faces.”

“Rosey I-” Snow began, but she was cut off.

“Say, how about I take this new guy and give him a tour of the place we built up here.” Rosey said. She was talking to Snow, but her eyes were on Jon. “He's not your kind of guy anyhow, right Snow?”

Jon looked at Snow, who looked at Jon. Her eyes pleading for him to just do away with the girl. Jon rolled his eyes, Snow could have easily taken care of the situation, but it was on his shoulders.

“Thanks for the offer, but I'm going to stay with Snow. It would be rude of me to leave my date alone.” Said Jon. Rosey looked more than a little disappointed. “For the record, we are friends, but we are also on a date. But I'm sure that guy over there would appreciate some female company, he needs to recover his masculinity.”

Jon gestured to the cat he had threatened earlier. He seemed to be back into the life of the party, but he avoided Jon's general direction at all costs. Rosey flicked her tail in annoyance and trudged off. Snow watched the other cat every step of the way.

“You okay Snow?” Jon asked.

“I'm fine.” Snow shook her head and looked at her drink.

“No, you're not. What's wrong?”

“I'm just tired of trying to impress those people. But I'm tired of being the neighborhood freak...I guess it was worth it to see a girl like that disappointed.”

Jon laughed a little. “Never been attractive to anyone before. Why am I as a cat I wonder?”

“Because as a dog, you're a little too short and too awkward with dog social things. You fit right in as a cat.”

“I do don't I?” Jon felt himself beam. He could get used to this magic charm. He would have to use it a lot more often than just sneaking dates with Snow. Jon picked at his food a little and grimaced. Once again he felt nauseous. A headache had set in. “I think all this loud music is giving me a headache. I can't seem to get these little head pains to go away.”

“Sorry, I was a little too caught up in getting back at some people that I didn't consider this place not be your cup of tea.” Said Snow.

“I don't mind. I have the date I wanted, and it's going along really well. I can get over these headaches.” Said Jon. “Excuse me a bit, I'm going to the rest room. Can you point me in the right direction?”

Snow nodded and gestured towards a large door on the far side of the room. It led to the employee breakroom and restrooms. Still functional due in part to some ingenuity on behalf of the strange proprietors of this establishment. In reality Jon just needed a moment to himself. The crowd, the noise, the smells. It was getting to him.

Little did he know, that the group he had rattled up earlier had now started following him. They weaved through the crowd just as he did. The cats were all chattering and drinking. Some were dancing. All of them provided ample cover for those following Jon.

The dog-turned-cat stepped into the bathroom and splashed his face with water. It felt nice to have something cool touch his skin. Especially after the crowds he had been packed together with. He popped his neck and stretched, enjoying the relative silence while he still could.

Jon sat there for a moment, when he heard claws clicking on linoleum. He turned to his right, only to find that he was being grabbed and thrown against the wall.

“Nobody, and I mean nobody, embarrasses me in public. You got that punk? My guys took it easy on you, not intervening before you did some crazy stuff. It's bad for business, and it gets us both banned.”

“What do you intend to do with me?” Jon muttered, trying to fight back the guys holding him down. He only managed to squirm and take a few hits.

“Mark you up so bad, everyone will know you messed with the wrong guy.”

Jon kicked the cat low and shoved him off. He made a break for the door. Only to come face to face with another one of those lousy cat hoodlums. Jon turned to run, but found himself trapped. He braced himself for a fight, or at least a beating. He knew he was going to get hit. But before the first one could lash out, a loud wooden thwack filled the air. Their leader slumped down and rubbed the back of his head before Snow hit him again. This time he went down like a sack of bricks.

Rather than run, Jon turned to his right and bopped another cat in the face with a right hook. Jabbed him in the gut, and then proceeded to uppercut him on the chin. The cat tumbled back, dazed and confused. Snow looked at Jon and tilted her head.

“Where'd you learn to do that?” Snow asked, she ducked a punch and swatted her assailant on the thigh with the broom handle.

“Mom, she used to these boxing exercise things to stay in shape and I played along sometimes because I was bored.” Jon shrugged before grabbing the cat he had thrown off balance and hurled him into the cat Snow had been scuffling with. The two cats tumbled into each other and onto the hard linoleum floor. Two other hoodlums looked around themselves and booked it.

The cats on the ground moaned in pain. Jon and Snow looked at each other before ducking out of the bathroom themselves. Adrenaline was running high and their hearts were racing.

“We should fight crime or something, we make a good team.” Said Jon.

“Sure, I'd be Psy-cat and you would be Little Jon.” Snow took a sip of her drink and giggled. “I could buy you some green tights and everything.”

Jon rolled his eyes. “Uh, so what now? I'm sure those guys aren't going to be happy and could we get rousted for messing up club patrons? They said something about getting banned?”

Snow nodded and sighed. Maybe Jon was right. Her night of revenge would have to come to an early end. Lest they be snagged and thrown out by force. She looked at her drink and sipped at it.

“I bet you could sweet talk Max into giving you a place to hangout. He doesn't know me, I'm a stranger remember.” Jon winked. Snow back at Jon and smiled. That was a plan.

“Okay let's get out of here. It stinks anyway.” Snow stood up and walked with Jon towards the exit.

~~
So I made a last minute decision to dedicate the next couple of chapters to the Jon and Snow date, instead of doing what I had planned. I think if I keep my mind in one place long enough I will be able to concentrate on writing it better and getting updates to you guys sooner. Then when that's over I'll do the same thing with the Peanut and Grape. I'm sure you guys won't mind seeing some JonXSnow stuff for a bit. :lol:

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Wed Sep 04, 2013 1:05 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
I can't Imagine Denver and Lupa's reactions will be when they find out the cat Snow was with is Jon. :lol:

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Fri Sep 06, 2013 11:04 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
YAY FOR EPIC GANGBUSTERS! :lol: :lol: :lol:
These two make such a nice couple, no matter the skin involved. I *love* how this came out...Although I can't imagine why Kitsune should play an evil part in this date...

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Sun Sep 08, 2013 5:06 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
I've been occupied all this week and couldn't believe when I saw another update so soon! You are my hero!

As you said, I don't mind at all to see more of Jon and Snow XD. You know, I'm not a big fan of romance, but you are making me to like it a lot. :D

valerio wrote:
...Although I can't imagine why Kitsune should play an evil part in this date...

Actually, I think he's just giving him a lesson (or maybe to both of them). :roll:

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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Good thing Peanut and Grape wouldn't be hearing about this... at least for the moment.

Saturn381 wrote:
I can't Imagine Denver and Lupa's reactions will be when they find out the cat Snow was with is Jon. :lol:

I sense jealousy and weirdness... a lot of weirdness.

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Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:36 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Announcment: hear ye, hear ye!

This Sunday I am packing my bags and moving out of my house into the big bad world. Thus starting my young adult life and having wacky (re:boring) adventures. I have been preparing for this since last week and it is finally coming to a head.

What does that mean for you my dear readers? Nothing too special, the fic will have a bit of a delay due to moving and getting situated in my new home. But it's not like you were on the edge of your seat waiting for my updates anyway right? ;) However once I get a moment to myself you will get the concluding parts of the Night to Remember chapter.

But since I do feel a little bad, I decided that there should be a little compensation for your troubles.

Just check out this little link here for an illustration.



...did you click it yet? Good. I finally got to putting him down on paper. This was a warm-up drawing to help me get ready for Valerio's request. It stretched out my tired art abilities and finally gave me a handy character reference for me to look back to for future projects, such as that aforementioned request I have been working off and on .

So with that said, I will be around for the rest of the week, but you probably won't see another story update until late next week. Thank you for your time and patience.

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At the end of the day I often think about what I have done for the world. What I have changed, perhaps made better or worse. I then sit at a computer for hours and look at pictures of cats.

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Lucky Abbot: S-9 P-6 E-7 C-6 I-7 A-4 L-3


Tue Oct 01, 2013 1:45 am
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Jon looks so cute! :D Also, good luck on your moving.

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Last edited by Saturn381 on Tue Oct 01, 2013 11:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.



Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:50 pm
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Post Re: Housepets! Changing By the Seasons: 3. Pet Project
Glad to see you around here again H.I. and I wish you luck with the move. ;)

Honorable Intentions wrote:
But it's not like you were on the edge of your seat waiting for my updates anyway right? ;)

Well, Hello! Over here! XD

Hehe, Jon is cute in that pic and yeah, I'm a bit surprised about this revelation. I mean, I have nothing against him having some extra pounds but isn't his appearance a bit contradictory with the story so far? My memory is not my best quality so I'm not sure how accurate are my arguments so I hope to not say anything stupid and make a fool of myself (as I always do XD).
For what I read throughout the story I thought he was rather athletic. He has been described similar to Peanut on many occasion. He's hiperactive and he's as fast and skilled as a cat climbing trees. He's very stealthy (and since he is a dog that means he had practiced a lot). He goes out with the wolves on their hunts. Had fought with Alana as equals (and she was quite agile) and escaped from a giant bear by running away.
Actually, I think the one who should be chubby has to be Denver. After all, he spends most of the day playing videogames. XD

Edit: By the way, I thought you said his collar was blue. :roll:

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