AN: i would love to own a doberman... or any dog even... O:

The evening had long turned to night, the last of pink hues gone from the sky and the day's heat seeped away. Streetlamps cast growing shadows all around. The roads were uncommonly quiet, except for the occasional late car, its driver tired and anxious to go home.

A clatter down the alleyway shattered the fragile quiet, as a shadow detached itself from the dark. The figure seemed to sway in non-existential wind, bracing a dark glove-clad hand on the brick wall for support.

As the figure passed under the yellow glow of a streetlamp, it revealed a set of deep set black eyes and long matted hair, and an abnormally pale angular face so white, it created a sharp contrast with his dark clothing.

The last Fey had proved to be troublesome, wasting his energy on the long chase, Walking in and out of many Realms. He felt a tad regretful for not drawing out the creature's death; how satisfying it would have been to watch as its purple dusk-coloured eyes scream for release, to teach it for even thinking of attacking him. Alas, he'd sensed the approach of another High Sidhe, which would have been of no problem except he was much weakened already. So he'd set the village ablaze, and used the last of his reserves to Walk once more into another Realm – to end up on the streets.

A low rumble pulled him out of his reverie.

Usually the animals of this Realm sensed but ignored him, but perhaps the smell of death and burn roused the animal's instincts. The figure turned around to face the black canine growling with head low and hackles raised. It seemed to be one of the Earth's attack dog species that, under normal circumstances, he appreciated.

He stilled and slowed his breaths as his deep eyes met yellow canine ones. The creature opened its mouth in a big snarl, showing off its teeth. Teeth made to easily tear through flesh on jaws that could snap bones. He saw its hind legs tense for a jump.

"Down boy!"

The voice that cut through the night startled him, though he did not show it. He felt a slight distress; he must be really close to depletion to not have sensed the newcomer's approach. The Moon was covered and it would be a long time before the Sun rose. He had to rely on his physical strength till then.

He scrutinized the young lad that had shouted. The boy was currently approaching the creature with wide decisive strides, right hand pointing derisively at it, as if in reprimand. He felt a little reprieve at boy's arrival. Now there were two targets, and the youth would prove to be an easier and more tempting choice. He could use the distraction to escape. This boy was courting Death if he thought he could subdue the beast.

"Down!" the boy said out in a loud clear command. He felt a pinch of pity at the boy's overconfidence. He was going to be mauled for sure.

As the huge dog snapped its head to the boy, he prepared for its leap.

The boy let out a commanding "Sit!" and to his surprise, the creature planted its rear to the pavement, letting out a high-pitched whine. The lad crouched down next to it and gave it adoring pats that seemed too ridiculously affectionate to be given to such a murderous creature. From what he could hear, the child was even praising it.

"Good boy, Darly. Good job." He cooed in soft tones.

In one swift motion, the boy faced him, staring straight at him with dark eyes filled with a sudden change to open hostility.

"Now who are you and what did you do?"

The words were incisive but also calmly spoken – maybe he still had a chance. He tried to smile, though his attempt probably formed a grimace at best.

The boy narrowed his eyes at him.

"Don't. You move, and Darly here will get you. And he will, trust me." The last few words were emphasized by a low menacing growl from the creature, now standing beside the boy.

He opened his mouth to reassure the boy. Or he tried to open it, even as darkness swallowed up his vision, trapping him in…