As to warnings, this is yaoi, with some pretty glossed over violence and some not very glossed over sex. I'm not sure how close I am to the cut off between R and NC-17 but I'll be sure to add an additional warning before any of the more questionable chapters.
I hope you like and thanks so much for the warm welcome! sandy
Then & Now
I must tell you that the newest litter belonging to the House is in good
health and looks to be well worth the time and effort needed to bring it
about. I have only one minor concern, #16. While it is too early to tell
for sure, his hands and feet indicate a propensity to height that may be
disadvantageous. Knowing as I do your dislike of culling, we will hope for
Once again I must tell you that while D litter is doing nicely as a whole,
#16 continues to cause problems. While he exhibits all the proper
emotional modifications, he comes far from displaying the proper physical
attributes of a product of the House. He is still growing, long past the
time he should have stopped and shows distressing signs of clumsiness.
Never has a product of our House been less than elegant and graceful and I
am at a loss as to how this has will continue to work with him
and attempt to remedy his short comings.
We are elated at being able to tell you that we have made our first
placement of a D litter mate! And at a most pleasing price! I think I can
say that our hopes for this litter were not unfounded and with the
exception of #16, I look forward to placement for all of them in due
course. I am at a loss as to what we can do about #16 though. He is quite
simply defective. Is it possible at this late date to obtain at least
partial return of his cost?
As you have requested I am enclosing the files pertaining to #16. I will
warn you that they are not pleasant reading. While his psychological
modifications, desire to please, etc are all that could be hoped and some
of his physical modifications, touch hunger, etc. are in place, there was
obviously some mishap at his creation. His looks and his height alone are
enough to make one cringe at the thought of his bearing the House brand.
When viewed in company with the rest of his litter, the differences are
immediately and appallingly apparent. We will continue to do our best and
await your recommendations.
I cannot thank you enough for your help in the matter of #16! You have,
with your usual insight turned a major liability into a major asset. I
only regret that we did not lay the entire matter before you earlier, but
we will work intensively with him to make up for lost time. Thankfully,
while he is not overly bright, he has been forced for some time to realize
his inferiority to his litter mates and to expand on this feeling will be
fairly easy. The training regime you have set forth gives me renewed hope
that he can be placed, in a niche market to be sure, but still profitably
placed and in such a way as to bring no disgrace to our House.
Thank you again,
"The boss will see you soon. Want some coffee while you wait?"
The man nodded and sat, silent and watchful. Hard to tell
where or what he was watching for with those sunglasses on though.
The secretary brought the coffee and spoons, sugar and cream and set it
down diffidently on the table by the waiting figure. He smiled and thanked
She waited hopefully to see if he had any other requests or comments but
he seemed content to fix his coffee in silence. When she heard the sound
of voices approaching she reluctantly left the room.
Damn shame in her opinion that he wasn't in more often. She wouldn't mind
getting to know that one a little better. Seemed quiet and polite for one
thing, that alone set him apart from the other thugs that used this place
as a base. And pretty besides, little on the short side but cheekbones to
die for. Besides, she had never done one of the sidhe, heard it was a wild
The gentleman in question was blissfully ignorant of the tone of her
thoughts. He was concentrating on the coffee and trying to brace himself
for dealing with the men who were now loudly bantering with each other as
they got their own coffee.
"Hey, it's the elf! How's it hanging Lin?"
He winced at the man's jocular rudeness.
"It hangs as usual."
This sent the gathered men into gales of laughter. They seemed to find his
deadpan delivery an attempt at levity. Although the laughter was touched
with a bit of nervousness. As quiet as Lin was he had a touch of menace
"Hey, you planning on staying awhile? See you brought your luggage."
He glanced down at the piece of luggage in question, a leather hat case
resting by his feet.
"Just making a delivery actually."
The men exchanged glances and changed the subject. Some things were not
healthy to know in their line of work.
The man who had made the first overture seemed bent on forcing
conversation from the sidhe. Why this was so was a mystery to Lin but he
had learned long ago that humans tended to ignore anything other than
violence when they were in a talkative mood. Since he had no wish for
bloodshed before he had finished his coffee he counted to ten silently and
hoped the man would run down soon.
"Hey, you should have made the party this week end, boss said you were
invited. It was a hell of a time!"
Lin tried to picture what kind of torture could induce him to spend a
weekend with these louts. Bamboo under his fingernails? The rack?
One of the men who had apparently missed this thrill of a lifetime began
asking questions which the louder one was more than eager to answer.
"Yeah, the mutt was in rare form this weekend. He ..."
Lin tuned out the rest as best he could. He had been treated to renditions
of this song before and it had turned his stomach then. He had no wish to
hear the sordid details of what these men considered a grand sport,
tormenting their employers pet.
Once he had had the misfortune of being present when one of them brought
out a vid of the high points of that weeks party. He had tried to
avoid watching but some of it seeped in regardless.
While he considered most humans a waste of space, humans in groups,
especially male humans drinking to excess and given someone helpless to
hurt were beyond disgusting. They seemed bent on outdoing each other in
acts of cruelty and humiliation. That they considered this a bit of fun,
harmless R and R, just made it worse. Had they the wit or soul to feel
ashamed he might hold out some slight hope for them. Not much, but a
The worst part was the boy they used in these sessions. Or rather the
"pet". They called him a lot of things but reference to him as a human
being was strictly avoided. Lin had tried it to see what reaction he got
and had been told in no uncertain tone that he wasn't a human, he was
just a thing, made with magic and tech to be used by his owners. When Lin
had inquired what the magic and tech had been used on, knowing that the
answer was a human zygote, they had explained that when the alterations
were finished what was left was no longer human, but law upheld them in this. The pets were a whole different category of beings, having no rights but the bare one to life, and that indifferently protected.
For men who broke the law for a living they developed a deep respect for
it when it reflected their own desires.
What he couldn't get out of his mind were the rare moments when the men
would lure the boy into thinking he had done something to avoid hurt, to
please these capricious masters. The boy would give a tremulous and
fleeting smile of overwhelming sweetness.
It never lasted long, human nature being what it was. The cruelty would soon drive it away. But the smile stayed in his mind for some reason. Like a guttering candle.
He drank his coffee and tried to turn his mind to other things. It
wouldn't do to let himself be ensnared in this matter. He was here on
business, nothing else.
When word came that the boss could see him, Lin picked up his package and
walked into the office. He set the box on the desk and seated himself in
the chair opposite the man he had come to see. Not a very impressive
specimen at first glance but a man with power of sorts. And, more
importantly to Lin, a man of wealth.
The man eyed the box dubiously and glanced at Lin. Lin gestured at the box
and gave a tight lipped smile. The man gingerly opened the box and peeked
inside. He closed it quickly and looked at Lin with some surprise.
"I didn't think, I mean, I had heard he was impossible to get to."
Lin shrugged. He made a very good living getting to people who thought
they were invulnerable.
"You didn't have to bring this as proof, I would have taken your word for
"So sorry. You said, if I recall, 'head on a platter'. One tries to
The man was looking a bit green and he was beginning to sweat. Lin rather
regretted the acute senses that were part of his heritage. He waited a few
moments and spoke.
"I fulfilled my part of the deal."
The man looked nervously around the room. He seemed to think that help was
lurking somewhere in the corners.
"Well, Lin, you have to give me a little time. I hadn't expected results
so soon if at all and..."
Lin pushed the sunglasses down and looked over them at the babbling fool.
His eyes were cat slit and dark forest green. The slits were wide at the
moment, not a good sign if the man was bright.
"You are going to pay me, are you not?"
The man nodded a few times too many.
"I just need some time. Maybe we could work out a deal?"
"We had a deal."
"I just don't have the hard cash right now. I have no way to pay you until
I free up some assets."
Lin casually looked around the office. It was tastelessly but expensively
decorated. What appeared to be a collection of Faberge' eggs rested in a
large display case.
He smiled at the man, "A trade perhaps?"
The man seemed to consider. Then his eyes widened and he nodded.
"I do have one possession that could cover the price. You might actually
come out quite a bit ahead on the deal."
The man rummaged in a desk drawer for a moment and finally fished out a
photograph. He presented it to Lin with a wide smile.
Lin glanced at it and his eyes narrowed. The boy in the vid looked back at
The man took advantage of Lin's silence to enlarge on the money the boy
was worth, the advantages of having him already 'trained' and if that
didn't please Lin there was always the option of selling him. Or, and here
the man fished again in the desk and came up with a business card which he
handed to Lin.
"This film maker was very interested in him. I hadn't given him a definite
answer but the market in snuff films is really hot and the profits would
be astronomical if you come up with something that grabs peoples interest.
You know, something different and dramatic. He had some good ideas."
Lin closed his eyes for a moment.
"The pet's possessions? The contents of his home?"
"Included. Do we have a deal?"
"Yes. There is paper work?"
The man nodded and left the room to get the necessary papers.
He returned with the paperwork and a small, sharp knife. Lin eyed the
knife with interest and the man shrugged.
"Sorry, blood is needed to seal ownership. It activates the link. Okay?"
Lin nodded again and the quick ritual and signatures were dispensed with.
Hands were shaken and Lin left the office with his ownership papers and
photo and the odd tingling feeling of the bond linking him and the boy
sitting uneasily in the back of his mind.
And three small Faberge eggs stashed in various pockets.
"Tazzy, pick up the phone. I have a present for you."
"Lin? That you?"
"Who else my dearest?"
"What do you want?"
"To shower you with riches."
"In return for..."
"My heart, I am wounded! I call to share my recent good fortune with my
dearest friend and I am met with doubt and mistrust. Such cruelty in one
"Such flowery language usually means serious trouble. What do you need?"
"Minor things only, a moving company contacted and engaged for a job.
Some advice. Perhaps a shoulder to cry on. The usual."
"You want me to hire movers? You have a phone and a phone book, what more
do you need to do that? You're moving? Why?"
"Not me, someone else. And I know you know people that will get to work
right away for a largish fee and not remember addresses if asked later."
"Look, why don't we meet and talk. Lunch okay?"
"Lunch is perfect. See you then."
Taz arrived at the sidewalk cafe late as usual. Lin noticed that his hair
style had changed again, the wild mop of hair now sported streaks of gold
amongst the black. His dress indicated that he was going through one of
his more feminine phases, a long gauzy number with a many layered skirt
that fluttered around his ankles. His face was striking with little make
up but a touch of color around the dark eyes. He spotted Lin and strode
over with a smile. Lin was amused to see the attention his half elven friend
attracted, looks of admiration and censure seemed about equal.
He seated himself and the attentive waitress took their order and left
them to chat.
Lin handed the other man a small gift wrapped box which was opened with
expressions of glee.
"It's gorgeous! You know I have always wanted one of these since we saw
that museum display! How sweet!"
"Glad you like it. Love the hair by the way."
"Thanks. When are you going to let me do something with yours. You would
look great with some lighter streaks maybe and some feathery wisps around
your face. It would soften the look, let me try it?"
Lin laughed. His hair was pulled back in his usual manner, the thick braid
running beneath his jacket and looped around itself out of sight. Taz had
rarely seen it otherwise, when it was unbound it draped in a fall of
midnight blue that reached the smaller mans knees at last check. Taz had
been bugging his friend about doing something more artistic with this mass
for ages and had met the same response each time.
They chatted of nothing of substance until the after lunch coffee and then
Taz lent forward and asked for details.
He got them.
"You did what? A pet? What the hell were you thinking?"
"Look, it is hard to explain but it is done now. It's only temporary
"Temporary? In what way?"
"Don't look at me like that, I have no plans to do anything dire. I just
need some time to find someone who will take him off my hands. And who will
treat him well."
"Don't look at me! I can't deal with my fish, I don't need any more
responsibility. Do you have any idea what you have gotten yourself into?"
"It can't be that complex. I just need him and his stuff moved. I'll speak
to him and find a more permanent owner and that will be that."
"Right. You want him moved into your place?"
"No. I bought a place in the quarter. That way he can stay there after he
gets a real owner."
"You do know that you will be doing more than 'speaking' with him, right?"
"Why? You know I don't do humans. What are you smirking about?"
"You may have to rethink you're prejudices unless you find an owner toot
sweet. Pets have some pretty serious needs."
"Go ahead, drop the bomb. I can tell you're dying to."
"Pets typically have a need for release that grows exponentially with
time. And we aren't talking months or even weeks. Days are more likely."
"So he can deal with it, I wasn't told he had lost the use of his hands."
"No, he can't. Most owners enjoy having complete control over that aspect
of their pets life. He needs you for that."
"That's ludicrous! What if the owner ends up in a car wreck or something?
The pet just drags around in need for the duration?"
"The owner can delegate someone to deal with the pet. And 'need' is
putting it mildly. It is rather like a cat in heat apparently."
"Wonderful, just what I wanted to make my life complete. A boy screeching
under my window. How does the delegation thing work."
"Don't even think about it, I am not going to get into this mess with
"But Taz, you could be my right hand man."
"I'm left handed and not interested! He's your pet, you deal. Besides he
will need a lot more than sex."
"Walkies and treats?"
"Don't get sarky. He will need affection and reassurance. Company too. It
is difficult for them to be alone. They are made to want to please, to
love the one who owns them. He will need you."
"He didn't get anything like that from the guy who owned him before."
"He was treated badly?"
"Put mildly, yes."
Lin told Taz a bit of what he had heard and watched his friends face fill
"Lin, this kid is going to have some real problems. Don't just sling him
in to someone elses lap right away, okay?"
"I won't. But you know I am not the person to deal with this kind of
thing. My approach to problems is pretty simplistic."
"Yeah, I know. And generally pretty permanent. I will get a moving gang
and set him up in the new place. Have you called him or anything?"
"Give me the number and both addresses. I'll let him know he'll be moving
and that he has changed want all his stuff moved with him?"
"Everything that isn't nailed down. And anything that can be pried up
isn't really nailed down."
"Got it. I'll call when things are set up."
The phone was ringing. 16 made his way to it quickly and picked it up. He
waited for the person on the other end to start the conversation.
"Hello? Is anyone there?"
Taz barely heard the voice. It sounded like a semi-whisper. He tried
"Hey! Can you speak up a bit? Is this, ummm, sorry, I don't know your
name. Is this 585-2756?"
"Yes. This is 16. Are you, do I belong to you now?"
"No! Did someone get ahold of you then? About your new owner?"
"No, I felt it. The change."
"Oh, sorry about that. I'm Taz, a friend of your new owner. His name is
"Don't hang up! He got a new place for you."
"Will I live with him now?"
"Er, no. It is a really nice place though. Two fireplaces and a balcony
Silence greeted this news.
"There will be people coming to move you and your things in the morning.
Is that too soon?"
"Lin thought you might want your stuff from the apartment as well as
personal things, yeah. Everything there can go with you, okay?"
"The movers will be there at 7 am, you can go with them to the new place."
"Will he be there?"
Taz winced. He had no bloody idea.
"If he isn't there when you get there he will be there that night."
(If I have to drag him there kicking and screaming.)
"Will you be there?"
"I'll drop by the next day, let you get settled in and all. Maybe we can
shop for whatever you need in the new place. Knowing Lin he will forget a
bunch of stuff. He is a good guy, just a little, umm, different."
"I look forward to meeting you. See you soon."
"Please, did Lin, did the other one give me to him?"
"No! He bought you."
Taz winced again. That sounded awfully raw.
The kid sounded relieved . Shit, what a life. To have your big
thrill of the day be that someone actually wanted you enough to buy you
rather than have you foisted on them as a gift. Taz dialed Lin as soon as
the line was clear.
"You have reached T.L. I am not in right now to..."
"Lin, I know damn well that is you pretending to be the machine! Stop
screwing around and talk to me."
"...To take your call. At the sound of the tone please..."
"Lin, I got ahold of your, of 16. "
"His name is 16."
"That isn't a name, light of my life. That is a number."
"Whatever. It is what he called himself."
"Oh, how did he sound?"
"Scared. And did you know that he could feel it when you took over his
"No. I had no idea."
"Did you plan to meet him at the new place?"
"I have some business tomorrow."
"Well, get it done before tomorrow evening and go see him."
"I mean it. And take a nice housewarming present."
"What? I got him the place, now I need to take a gift? And what the hell
is a nice housewarming present?"
"Look, from what my mother said, you guys don't live in trees or anything.
You must live in houses, correct?"
"So it follows that occasionally you must move into new houses or move in
together or some such."
"How do you honor this occasion?"
"It would depend, for most we do a ceremony to ensure the
fertility of the land and the union, if it is a couple."
"Like what exactly?"
"Spill our seed on the grounds."
"You heard me and I am not going to repeat it."
"Please tell me you bring it with you in a nice discreet vial or
"If it makes you feel better, my heart."
"May I just say, no wonder you don't get invited out much."
"Well,in this case,just bring a nice plant."
"As opposed to what, a nasty plant?"
"Look, wise ass, bring a nice house plant and some wine and make nice or I
will put a curse on you that will shrivel you like a raison."
"I will arrive bearing greenery and Dom Perignon. And make very nice
"Promise. He really sounded sad and scared. Just be charming."
16 hung up the phone and looked around the apartment. His stuff? Aside
from the furniture there wasn't much, his clothes would be easy enough to
throw into a bag. He could do that now. It would calm his nerves to have
something concrete to do.
The man on the phone sounded nice. Maybe Lin would be nice too? He hated
to get his hopes up. He wondered if Lin had seen him. He knew the men
sometimes took pictures or vids of him. Had Lin seen one?
He picked out his nicest clothes to wear in case Lin was there when he
arrived and resolved to get up early and fix himself to look his best.. He
wanted so badly not to mess up right away, to make a good first
He slept very little. A hot shower and some coffee gave him enough energy
to start his day. He tried to come up with something different to do with
his hair but it didn't want to cooperate. It seemed bent on going it's
own way whatever his wishes in the matter. He managed to force the thick
mass of red back from his face and into some semblance of order before
spraying it into temporary submission.
Next, his eyes. He always did them next as he rather liked them. They were
a kind of dull shade, brown, but they were at least elegantly tilted and
almond shaped. He had often wished his owner had let him have colored
contacts so he could more closely resemble his litter mates with their
vibrant and exotic eye colors but he was stuck with what he had. Oh, well,
they weren't so bad really.
His skin wasn't too bad either. He used a lightish base and some powder
and a little liquid blush to accentuate his cheek bones. Now he was down
to the lips. He hated his lips. He tried to emulate his littermates cute
bow lips to no avail. His mouth was too wide and his lips not the right
shape. He did the best he could and stepped back from the mirror.
He tried to take in the whole picture as a stranger would. He wasn't
anywhere near the beauty he had grown up around but maybe he wasn't as bad
as he thought? He clung to that hope. Maybe Lin wouldn't mind too much if
his face wasn't gently rounded, his chin too square. He looked away and
tried to concentrate on other things.
He had picked out the best outfit he had, a kind of longish skirt with
rather nice lines. He didn't think it looked too bad on him and it fit
okay. He hoped Lin wasn't as stingy about clothes as his old owner had
been. The old one had pointed out that since 16 was naked most of the time
he was in company, his clothes didn't matter. This may have been true but
it would be nice to have some new things.
He put on his lowest pair of heels and hoped his feet didn't look too
outrageously big. He wished the skirt was just a little longer to hide
them but it couldn't be helped. He pulled on the top he had chosen, black
and low necked. He thought it made his neck look too long and did nothing
to hide the width of his shoulders but it would have to do. He glanced
once more in the mirror before turning away to get his collar on. He hated
the thing, it was too wide for comfort and was plain and old into the
bargain. He knew he wasn't allowed outside without it and the leash
though, so that was that. He finished up just as the movers pulled up. He
opened the door for them and stood to one side, head lowered, awaiting
The men mostly ignored him, which was fine with him. They made a few
comments but nothing he hadn't heard before. One of the men seemed to take
an instant dislike to him, he said pets gave him the creeps. The others
seemed more neutral and at least no violence was offered. When everything
was loaded onto the truck one of the men grabbed his leash and led him
out. The man who had voiced his distaste spoke up:
"That thing isn't riding up front with us."
"Alright, I'll find room for him in the back."
He was led into the tight maze of furniture in the back of the truck and
the man with the leash found a corner he could curl up in for the trip.
This man seemed a bit embarrassed and unsure how to deal with him. He
asked if he would be okay back here while studiously avoiding eye contact
with him. 16 nodded and the man left, shutting the doors behind him. 16
shifted a bit on the floor, trying to get comfortable and trying not to
think of how his clothes were going to suffer from this trip. He closed
his eyes and drifted into day dreams of his new life and eventually the
day dreams slid to true dreams and he slept.
Lin felt that he had gone to some green infested purgatory as he wandered
dazedly about the garden shop. He wondered if there was some special
section where nice plants lived. He had absolutely no clue what would
prove acceptable. And there were way too many choices. Hanging or upright,
flowering or non-flowering, scented or not. And every size from miniscule
to massive. He finally found a sales person and made a quick circuit of
the place pointing out things at random. Then of course he realized he
would have to have this mess delivered as he had overdone it. He had to
have at least one thing to carry with him. He shrank from the idea of
lugging a potted plant all the way to the kids place, probably arriving
liberally smeared with dirt and with grimy hands.
He stood dithering in the cut flower area until some woman took pity on
"May I help you?"
"I live in hope."
"First date jitters?"
"More or less, yes."
"Don't worry about it, women love the idea of a guy arriving with flowers.
The kind don't matter as much as the thought does."
Lin smiled thinly.
"Do guys love the idea of guys arriving with flowers is the question
The woman lost her smile for a moment and then gamely wrenched it back
"Are you serious?"
"Rarely, but this is one of those rare times."
"Oh, well. I don't know. I never thought about it before."
"What a coincidence."
The woman took in Lins lost air and her eyes got a determined glint.
"Tell me a bit about him and we'll come up with something he'll love."
Lin thought a bit and said:
"He is new in town and we have never actually met."
"Blind dates are hell."
"I am beginning to agree with you."
"Do you want to be understated and elegant or sweep him off his feet with
something showy and lavish?"
"Is there something in between with a dash of reassurance as to my
"I'll do my best."
A brief time later Lin was on his way with a tasteful selection of flowers
and a phone number to try if things went badly. He had tipped the girl
lavishly and stuck the number in his pocket.
He paused at the door of the building, trying out a variety of smiles. He
settled on a slight diffident grin that felt okay, squared his shoulders
and marched in before he could change his mind.
16 answered the door in a state of high anxiety. He hadn't had a chance to
repair much of the damage from the trip and was sweaty, hair every which
way and in wrinkled clothes. He stood in the doorway on the verge of
Lin had started to speak to the figure in front of him when it suddenly
dropped to it's knees. He looked around in some confusion but finally
decided the boy hadn't fainted or anything, he just seemed to be following
some old habit. Lin turned up the smile and dropped gracefully down in
front of him.
"Hi! I am Lin. You would be 16?"
"You can drop the sir. Lin is fine. Are you all right?"
They knelt in crushing silence for a moment and Lin decided to try a new
"I hate to mention it but I am not used to addressing the tops of peoples
heads. Could you look up if not stand up?"
16 looked up and met Lin's eyes. Or actually, Lins sunglasses. He seemed
riveted by something. 16 finally blurted out in a strained voice:
"You have ears!"
"The better to hear the dulcet sound of your voice, my dear."
16 put one hand to his mouth and dropped his gaze.
"You can look at me, truly, I am vain enough to enjoy it."
When 16 darted a glance back at Lin he swiveled one of the cat like
pointed ears in his direction. 16's eyes widened.
"I gather Taz left out some major points about me. I am of the sidhe."
They drifted off into silence again and Lin suppressed a sigh. This was
actually going worse than he had expected. He gave up on the smile. And he
had worked so hard on it too. Oh, well.
"16, could we maybe go inside? I don't bite or anything. And I brought
flowers that need water. Okay?"
16 rose and stepped backwards through the door, keeping an eye on Lin.
When they had gotten far enough into the room Lin kicked the door shut
behind him and 16 jumped.
"16, are you phobic or something?"
"I'm sorry, what?"
"Some humans are a bit phobic about us, about the fey. Is that the
"No, I'm so sorry, I was just surprised. I'm sorry."
The last sorry sounded like the beginning of a wail. Lin winced and handed
the flowers to 16.
"Don't worry about it, really. Just put these in some water, all right?"
16 took the flowers to the kitchen and put them in a glass with some
water. He took a few seconds to admire them and to get a grip. He
took a few deep breaths and went back out to try and salvage the
"The flowers are beautiful. Thank you."
Lin just shrugged but 16 thought he looked pleased.
"Lin, I just never saw an elf in real life, just on documentaries and
stuff on tv, I'm not phobic or anything. Really."
"I'm glad. It would have been awkward. Is the place all right? I didn't
know what kind of thing you might like."
"It's lovely. I haven't really had a chance to look around much. It's
much bigger than my old place."
"I'm sorry if I got here at a bad time."
16 wondered if Lin was being sarcastic. He didn't sound like it though.
"No, I am glad you came."
16 was beginning to feel fidgety. He wasn't sure what the rules were with
Lin. He was so afraid of making things go badly. He was used to one way of
doing things and now he had no bearings. The old one usually just barged
in and started in on him. He had never been expected to make conversation.
He had no idea what might be the right thing to say.
And he was hungry for touch, he had never had a chance to be with anyone
so beautiful and he wanted him badly. He had no idea if he was allowed to
ask. His old owner hadn't let him ask, he had pointed out that 16 was
there for his convenience and not vice versa. Did Lin feel the same way?
He moved a little closer to Lin and that seemed to be okay, Lin didn't
back away or anything. He did take off his sunglasses though.
16 found himself fascinated with Lin's eyes. He realized with a start that
he was staring and quickly dropped his gaze again.
Lin looked around the mostly empty room for something to talk about. He
was getting uncomfortably aware that 16 seemed more than a bit on edge. He
wondered if he should say something. There didn't seem any discreet way to
broach the subject.
"16, do you have an actual name or something you like to be called?"
"My last owner never gave me one."
"Well, is there one you like? Unless you have some sentimental attachment
to 16 which is okay too."
"I don't like 16 much. I would like a name if you would give me one."
"Look, names are very important to my people. I can't just give you one, a
true name is one you find yourself."
16 nodded and stood there in a pool of quiet sadness. Lin mentally cursed
and spoke again:
"I could give you a use name if you like, I think it is what you would
call a nick name. Is that okay?"
16 nodded and smiled at Lin. Lin had to remind himself that this was a
strictly temporary arrangement and that 16 would smile just as sweetly at
his next owner.
Still, he was so beautiful. Warm brown eyes under elegant brows, the lines
of his face were strong and his mouth was definitely an invitation to sin.
And aside from the fact that you could hurt yourself on it, his hair was
gorgeous. All shades of red and copper with a few light strands of reddish
gold strewn about.
He was tall and from what one could tell with the long skirt and all,
leggy. He seemed a bit on the thin side, Lin wondered if the old owner had
fed him decently. He seemed shy and skittish but Lin couldn't blame him
for that. He had no reason to be trusting.
"How about, Faun? For a nick name? Like a young deer, you know. Your eyes
are like theirs."
"Thank you, I like that a lot. Faun."
He smiled at Lin and Lin couldn't help smiling back. Faun moved a little
closer and Lin cleared his throat.
"Um, Faun, I don't know much you know about the sidhe from tv but some
things you might want to know. We have, rather obviously, a keener sense
of hearing than most humans and we can see in the dark. My kind, my branch
if you will,have some other attributes."
Lin smiled widely at Faun, showing delicate looking fangs. Faun paled a
bit but held his ground.
Then Lin extended one hand and two inch claws shot out from his finger
He waited a second and then retracted both teeth and claws. He waited for
Faun to say something but Faun seemed speechless.
"I just thought you should see the whole package, as it were. This
arrangement, my owning you is just for a little while. I'm sure we can
find a human owner, one who will treat you well and who you will like
soon. For the time being, I am afraid you are stuck with me. I also have a
much better sense of smell than a human would. And when people are aroused
their scent changes."
This got a reaction, Faun hastily backed up and blushed furiously.
"I smell bad?"
"No! Not bad, nice really. Really nice. Really distractingly nice."
Faun noted that Lins voice was getting a little husky by the last