"Faolin," I whispered as I entered my quarters.

The adorable shaggy-furred, excitable, over-affectionate wolf cub bounded up to me, his tail wagging as if he had consumed too many sweet foods.

"Ruf," he said, and I bent down to scratch him behind his ears. I wondered what Rielle would think if she knew I owned a puppy. I saw great inspiration in her eyes when she was out riding the Gryphons and guessed that she was an animal lover too, but I was too shy to reveal my secret to her, plus slightly worried by the intimacy she might make of any moments I spent with just her and my best friend.

I laid down some food of his before making myself a meal of a chicken sandwich in the small kitchen area.

Sitting down to eat, I thought about Rielle. Here, alone in my room, I could truly think about the things I pushed out of my mind when she was making me feel awkward. Her loveliness. Her cute smile. I was pretty sure that I didn't like her any more than a teacher should but if she'd been my friend rather than my pupil, if we had known each other for a little longer, I might have had a slight desire to begin a more intimate relationship with her. At the very least, I wouldn't feel uncomfortable with those actions of hers which could be interpreted as flirtatious.

The thing was... I was attached to her. Affectionate tutors were neither rare nor frowned upon, though I liked to be subtle just in case, and I felt that if something ever happened to Rielle, I'd be sad. As sad as if she were Faolin, a companion I'd grown to love strongly.

If she were in danger, I'd want to rescue her.

The End

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