The dog was too big to fit anywhere. Getting her back to the manor house was nearly impossible – in fact, it damn near didn’t happen at all. If Lazarus hadn’t plonked himself down on the ground beside the hound, refusing to move anywhere without her, Gabriel would’ve made him leave her behind. As it was, he found himself unable to do so when he saw the attachment Lazarus had formed with her in the two short days they had spent with her. And anyway, Gabriel had to hand it to her, having her around got him out of worrying too much about losing his virginity. Of course he wanted to bed his lover; he was simply incredibly nervous about the whole thing.

Having the dog around was a good excuse to put the whole thing to the back of his mind as he watched Lazarus teach her that hugs were a sign of affection, and that she wasn’t supposed to urinate indoors. The beast provided enough entertainment of her own, clumsily loping around and knocking things over with her tail.

Once she was back at the manor, the entertainment was more a nuisance than an amusement. Her size was not something the manor accommodated for, despite being an impressive structure. Ornaments were put proudly on display for all to see around the place, most of them of a fragile nature. Lazarus laughed, and delighted in her behaviour like an amused child. Gabriel, on the other hand, hid his face in his hands and wondered what he had let himself into as the dog tore through the lounge, closely followed by Lazarus and a couple of the housekeeping staff who were carrying bits of a broken vase, yelling for them to stop.

“Matilda!” Lazarus shouted, launching himself at her. Gabriel looked up and watched as the two of them narrowly avoided a collision with the wall. “We mustn’t run indoors, Tilly,” he grinned, and his tone of voice betrayed his words.

“You finally thought of a name for her, then?” Gabriel asked, half amused as the staff looked relieved that the chase was over. “I like it. More than I like her, right now. How am I supposed to explain the damage she’s caused?”

Lazarus waited until the staff were out of earshot til replying, “I’ll suck his cock if it’ll shut him up.”

“I don’t think he’d appreciate that,” Gabriel frowned, “you know he’s already against you enough with you-” Lazarus put a finger over his lips, shutting him off.

“Your father and I could make music more beautiful than the music I compose with a piano,” his eyes twinkled mischievously, teasingly. Gabriel relaxed, seeing that he was jesting. “You need to relax, Gabriel. I’m sorry about the pot. I’ll try and earn some extra money to replace it.”

“How? Ignoring the fact that you could play a thousand concerts and you’d never replace it.”

Letting out a long sigh as he melted into Gabriel’s lap, he shrugged, admitting defeat. “I don’t know. I’ll take Tilly home with me, so she won’t break anything else here.”

“You know your place is too small for her.”

“I’ll manage,” he smiled, kissing Gabriel’s cheek, “I know what fathers can be like, remember?” He ran his fingers through Gabriel’s locks, pressing his lips to his forehead. Footsteps echoing down the hallway outside tore them apart faster than a well aimed flick of a sharp sword. Lazarus jumped up and stood next to the dog, who looked thoroughly confused.

The footsteps continued past the lounge and both of them breathed a small sigh of relief, though Lazarus’ was bitter. He hated more than anything that they had to tiptoe around and stay secret. The boy loved his young lord; why was it a crime? Why was he not allowed to shove it in people’s faces the way other couples could?

Both Gabriel and the dog noticed Lazarus’ suddenly sour mood, and both turned to look at him. Glancing between them, he mumbled something about how he was supposed to be somewhere, calling Matilda to follow as he made for the exit.

“Just where do you think you’re going?” Gabriel scowled, standing up. 

“Home. Tilly’s gotta learn where she lives now.”

“And the real reason?”

“You know the real fucking reason, Gabriel. Stop pretending like it don’t matter,” he growled. Lazarus seemed to be so much bigger when he was angry; his accent reverted to its natural state and the ice in his eyes was so piercing it made even Gabriel feel like a child under his gaze. The lord bit his lip, uncharacteristically looking at the floor for a second. “You can come home with me or you can fucking stay here.” Shocked into silence, Gabriel sat and watched as he left with Matilda.  

The End

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