As he rested his head on Melissa's shoulder, he contemplated what he had said. Find a mate? How would he do that? Aside from not being welcome in the pack, and therefore rejected by the wolves anyway, he couldn't tear Lazarus like that. He was content with the new level of control Lazarus had granted him and Melissa's friendship.
"Why do you want me to find a mate?" he asked after a while, moving back and looking at Melissa curiously, his head tilted slightly.
"I want you to be happy, to know what it feels like." She waited until she had finished speaking before turning to look at him. He smiled slightly.
"I'm happy just having a friend," he murmured, "maybe someday it'll become love?"
She was taken aback, waiting for a moment before replying. "Maybe."
"Why so surprised?" he laughed softly, "It can't be impossible, can it? And it'd be so much easier on the both of you, rather than having to watch your husband's wolf go off and love someone else."
"I'm surprised because I didn't expect it, I'm not a wolf. I'm a leech, you know that."
"Yet Lazarus has fallen in love with you... Aside from what you are, it was a surprise because I never thought I'd hear the day when he would finally stop beating himself up for letting his old lover die."
"I don't know why Lazarus loves me either but, if I wasn't who I am, I would be a werewolf and living with Albert." Inside his head, Lazarus growled angrily at the thought of her living with the other wolf.
"I don't think Lazarus liked that idea much," Bane said, his eyes wide at Lazarus' reaction.
"Didn't think he would be, but then again, Albert was a coward... still is a coward. He would've never saved me; he would have left me to die in that fire." Bane was curious, but he felt it was better not to push his luck by talking about Albert when it was a sensitive subject. Instead, he looked up at the sky, speckled with pinpricks of light.
"I'm sorry, I'm being so sombre, ignore me."
"No, it's fine. I just didn't want to make you talk about something that I realise you're not comfortable with," he murmured, still looking at the sky, making patterns with the tiny dots above them.
"Thank you." He nodded and looked at her, smiling a little. "Umm, just a question, how do wolves show affection to each other? I know we kiss but..."
"Huh," he mumbled, looking back up and thinking, "I don't really know. I guess it's easier in human form for that kind of thing?"
"You're a very strange wolf, then... what gives you that warm fuzzy feeling?" She laughed.
"I'm not strange, I've just never spent any time with other wolves. I don't know how they act around each other. I know more about how humans act together. Well... drunk humans, seeing as I inhabit one who spent three centuries paralytic."
She rolled her eyes before smiling slightly, touching her nose to his, licking his muzzle warmly before resting her head on his shoulder. "I know." He put his head back on her shoulder and smiled to himself.
"I like this, though."
"Even though I am really short compared to you."
"I don't mind," he murmured, closing his eyes. She shifted her head slightly getting comfortable against him.
"That's good." They sat like that for a while until Bane opened his eyes and sighed. The sun was inching into the sky again, turning it from a deep black to a light grey at the horizon in his eyes.
"We should go back inside," he mumbled, lifting his head up again as the sun began to illuminate the town dimly.
"Yeah, I guess you're right." He stood and they walked back to the apartment together silently. Had anyone seen them, they might have thought they were dreaming, watching two ethereal wolves walking through a modern apartment block, perfectly serene. Bane sat beside the door, waiting patiently.
"You need to transform back and open the door for me," he smiled.
"You opened the door last time without my help." She pointed out, transforming back anyway.
"Yes... there's a latch on that side of the door."
"Yeah, okay, get in mutt." She laughed. "Stop proving me wrong." He grinned and walked inside, jumping up on the sofa.
"Isn't Lazarus telling you off for that one?" She asked, closing the door behind her.
"No. The sofa's okay, he just doesn't want dog hair on his side of the bed. Apparently it's annoying to sleep in."
"Oh, but my side's okay?" She arched an eyebrow slightly and he laughed.
"Why would I get hair on your side if I'm on his side?"
"No, I mean, he doesn't mind you going on the bed, if it's on my side as long as his side is okay."
"I don't think he considered sleeping on your side, to be honest," he said, whimpering slightly as the moon's grip on him loosened.
"A shame I'll only see you next month."
"Unless I get pulled out again. If only transformations were less painful," he murmured, slinking off the sofa.
"Aww, miss me that much?" he tried to reply, but he couldn't make the words come out, pain gripping him as he shivered, his claws scraping on the wooden floor as he tried not to fall flat on his face, whining pitifully. He dropped to the floor on his side, curling up and closing his eyes as he cried out.
Melissa leant back on the door and closed her eyes, blocking out the horrible sounds until it was over.
"I'm free for a whole month," Lazarus panted, "and all I want to do is sleep for weeks."