It was morning when Cani heard a knock on the front door and opened it.
‘Good morning.’ she said to miss Tesha.
‘Morning.’ Tesha said and held up a folder. ‘I need your help.’
‘Come in.’ Cani said and let her in.
Just as she entered the room she found Guy wrapped up by Ara from behind in the kitchen and Feli and Avia naked at the table. They froze on the spot and she watched them for a moment. She looked back at Cani who couldn’t hide she wasn’t wearing anything either.
She sighed. ‘Whatever. I already heard and had my suspicions.’ she said and sat down at the table. ‘Make me a tea, will you?’
‘Ah, sure.’ said Guy and hurried with the watercooker.
‘You, aren’t mad at us?’ Feli asked.
‘How far have you gone?’
Feli fiddled with her cup. ‘We only kissed so far.’
‘Fine. I only ask you to think it through if you want to go further. You’ll have no other choice than go all the way.’
‘All the way?’
‘Marriage. For life.’
They all blushed at the idea.
‘So you’d better not be playing around with them.’ she said to Guy.
‘Miss Tesha, I’ll stand by their side as long as they allow me.’ he said handing her her tea.
She smiled and let the scent of tea waft along her face. ‘Then if you don’t mind, can you put something on?’
He quickly covered himself. ‘Ah shit, I forgot.’ he said and hurried out of the room with the girls.
A minute later they returned and sat down at the table.
‘You said you needed our help?’ Cani said.
Miss Tesha nodded and handed over the folder to her. ‘There’s a pickpocket going around at this entertainment park targeting couples. Security has tried to catch the culprit but so far no luck. A friend of mine works there and asked if maybe I had an idea.’
‘You thought we could pose as a couple and lure the thief into a trap?’ Feli asked as she read through the file.
‘You even suspect it might not be human?’ Cani said.
Miss Tesha nodded. ‘If we forget for a moment that the thief is human, anything is possible.’
‘So, go there with one of the girls as my girlfriend, see if someone tries to steal my wallet and try to catch it using the
ir better abilities and senses?’ Guy asked.
‘Basically, that’s it.’
‘Are you up for it?’ Guy asked the girls and saw them staring at each other. ‘Girls?’
Miss Tesha sipped her tea. ‘They’re already fighting over who gets to go as your girlfriend.’
Later that day Feli and Guy walked through the gate holding hands.
‘Don’t get too lovey-dovey with her.’ Guy heard Cani say through his ear piece. ‘Otherwise you’ll have to double that to us.’
He smiled. ‘No worries, everything I do I want to do with all of you.’
‘Let’s just get this over with soon so we can enjoy our time here too.’ Ara said.
‘Are you ready Avia?’ Guy asked.
‘I have a good view of you.’ she said perched at the top of the castle’s tower.
Guy had solved the choice of who’d be the girlfriend by looking at their strengths. Avia was perfect for a view from the sky, Ara could best set traps if the thief tried to run away, Cani was best at chasing and Feli had the best sense of what was going around her.
‘Let’s get this show on the road then.’ Miss Tesha said from the security booth.
Feli and Guy started with a trainride around the park to get a feeling of the place.
‘Lots of green. If the thief is small he can hide more easily in the bushes.’ Guy said.
‘Crowded shopping streets, easy to lose a tail.’ Feli said.
After the ride they decided to go for a snack first.
‘Openly show your wallet. Let them see you have plenty of cash.’ Miss Tesha adviced.
‘Yeah.’ Guy said and even let it fall on the ground once.
They walked around while eating their waffels and went onto a merry-go-round. Next the funny mirrors, the rowing boats at the lake, the house of horrors.
‘I’ll bet she’ll go all “Iyaa” and “Eee” while clinging to him.’ Cani muttered.
Guy snickered and Feli huffed.
‘I’m not that easy.’ she said and screamed at a skeleton suddenly coming out of the wall in front of her.
She took a couple of deep breaths while Guy comforted her.
‘You were saying, miss easy?’ Cani said with a grin.
‘Shut up. I’ll watch you going into a bath.’ she said and pricked up her ears hearing something close.
‘Guy.’ she whispered.
‘Now?’ he whispered.
She looked around in the dark, then saw something grey flashing by. ‘Thief!’ she shouted and chased it.
Guy ran after her avoiding the horrors she triggered. Outside he checked his pocket and his wallet had indeed been stolen.
‘I confirm. My wallet has been taken.’ he said as he ran after Feli who darted through the bushes.
‘Where are they headed Avia?’ Miss Thesa asked.
‘To the petting zoo.’ she answered flying above them. ‘I can see something grey moving fast.’
The thief ran through the stables, ducking under ponies and jumping over peacocks with Feli hot on it’s tail.
‘You’re not getting away!’ she said grinning.
‘Sounds like you’re having fun!’ Cani said as she ran towards them. ‘Let me join!’
‘Be my guest!’
The thief headed left into the crowd at the shops.
‘Damned!’ Feli said. It can move easier through them being smaller!’
‘I’ll take the other street!’ Cani said. ‘Extra cuddle and kiss time with Guy for the one to cath him!’
‘You guys..’ Guy said running towards the shops.
‘I see it turn right at the coffee shop.’ Avia said.
‘Right!’ Feli and Cani said.
The thief saw Cani arriving at the end of the street and turned left through a restaurant diving across the counters.
‘He came out the other end and turned left.’ Avia said.
‘My direction!’ Feli said and took a quick right.
The thief saw Feli blocking the street and turned back quickly. At the end of the street Cani appeared again and it halted for a moment. Looking around it saw a narrow ally and dived into it just as Feli and Cani reached it.
‘Damned!’ Cani said.
‘Don’t worry.’ Avia said. ‘Go around it.’
They ran off to the other side of the buildings and found the thief bundled up in spider thread.
‘Looks like those cuddles and kisses are mine.’ said Ara from the top of the low building.
Feli undid some of the threads and removed the grey hood to reveal a mouse.
‘What?’ Miss Thesa said.
‘It’s a mouse. But I can’t find Guy’s wallet.’ Feli said.
‘Hang on.’ Cani said and sniffed at the nervous mouse and tried to remember where she smelled it before. ‘I know!’ she said and ran off.
‘Where are you going!?’ Feli asked.
‘I smelled that scent in these streets and I think I even smelled Guy’s scent there!’ she said and rounded a corner finding the trail again. ‘Here!’
She ran through the street until she saw a guy dropping the empty wallet into a trashcan. ‘You!’
He saw Cani and ran off at once. She chased him but when he saw she would outrun him he kicked an errand boy from his scooter and drove off.
‘Damned! He’s getting away!’
‘No he won’t!’ Avia said and landed in front of him spreading her wings.
‘He’s not slowing down! Get out of the way!’ Cani shouted.
Avia shut her eyes awaiting an impact but instead heard Guy shout as he ran into the side of the scooter. It crashed and slid on its side against a low stone wall with Guy and the other thief.
‘Sweetie!’ Cani shouted and ran towards him.
Avia hurried closer and they both found Guy on top of the thief grinning. ‘Got him.’
Cani hugged him. ‘Are you okay!?’
‘Just some bruises so be careful.’ he moaned.
‘Gomen.’ she said and let him go.
‘Thanks.’ Avia said.
‘Just doing my job protecting you.’ he grinned and tried getting up with Cani’s help.
Later that day they found miss Tesha and the grey mouse sitting in their apartment.
‘Don’t tell me.’ Guy sighed.
‘She ended up as an orphan at this man’s place who thaught her how to pick pockets. So until we can find any relatives we’d like you to take custody of her. Being with others like her seemed the best idea.’ miss Thesa explained.
‘What’s your name then?’ asked Cani.
‘Not telling.’ the mouse said looking away.
‘You know, I could let Ara here ask the questions.’ Cani said and gestured at Ara who played with a bit of her thread.
‘Mami!’ she said quickly crawling away against Guy.
‘Don’t tease little girls.’ Guy said and patted Mami’s head. ‘I’m sure she’s just very scared right now.’
Mami glared at Guy.
‘Mami’s an adult.’ said miss Tesha.
Guy looked at her. ‘Eh?’
‘They’re a small species.’
‘Treat me like a little girl again and I’ll bite you.’
‘You prefer to be treated as a prey species instead?’ asked Feli baring a fang.
‘Eep!’ she said and crawled back against Guy.
He sighed. ‘Are you sure this is a good idea?’
Miss Thesa nodded. ‘Locking her up wouldn’t help her. She just needs to spend time in the right environment.’
‘I guess you can stay then. As long as you don’t cause trouble.’ Guy said to Mami.
‘Or else?’ she said.
‘These girls might think you need to be punished.’ he said gesturing at Feli, Cani and Ara who grinned deviously.
‘I leave her to you then.’ said miss Thesa as she went out the door. ‘Oh yeah, I got this.’ she said and pulled out tickets. ‘The director gave me season tickets for each of you so you can go on as many dates as you want there.’
‘Dates!?’ the girls behind him asked.
‘Oh boy.’ Guy said. ‘I think I’m in trouble now.’
She patted him on his shoulder. ‘You started it yourself.’ she said and left.
Guy woke up in the middle of the night, felt the comfortable touch of his loved ones and wanted to get back to sleep when he heard a noise from the livingroom. He waited to see if he heard more and heard a light thud. Careful not to wake the girls he crawled out of their embrace and quietly looked into the room.
He saw Mami sitting on the floor in front of the bookshelf with a couple of books next to her and looking at his photo album.
‘Can’t sleep?’ he asked.
Startled she backed away and hit her head against the books. ‘Ouch!’
‘Gomen, didn’t mean to surprise you.’ Guy said looking at her rubbing the back of her head.
‘I was just looking for something to read.’
He sat down in front of her. ‘You think you’ll fall asleep from pictures of me as a little kid?’ he said with a little smirk.
‘It fell out when I pulled out another book. Then I saw a mouse.’
‘Ah, right. he said looking at the pictures she pointed out. One with him outside holding a large grey mouse plush and one where he was asleep in a corner holding it. ‘I got it from my grandmother when I had a hard time sleeping myself. I never had any bad night after that.’ he said and smiled at the memories.
He sat up straight, ‘Idea.’ he said and left the room. When he came back he had the plush in his arms, sat down and gave it to Mami. ‘Here, I think it might help you too.’
‘Wha!?’ she said looking at it, then him. ‘I said I’m not a little kid! I don’t need it!’
‘You can try. It’s really comfortable. And I’m an adult too and now I can’t sleep without my real life plushies.’ he said with a grin and stroked it’s little nose. ‘I was never good with names though and just called it Mouse.’
She held it out to him. ‘I said I don’t need it.’
‘Too bad.’ he said. ‘I kind of felt Mouse got lonely being alone all these years and thought it would be nice to get comfort from a new friend.’
Mami looked at Mouse, then held it close again. ‘Fine then! I’ll take Mouse with me.’ she said and walked off to her own room.
At the door she glanced back at him. ‘Arigato.’ she said softly and hurried off.
Guy smiled to himself, put away the album and books, then yawned and went back to his own comfortable spot finding Ara awake.
‘Looks like you got to her.’
‘She’s not so bad. I’ll bet she had a hard time growing up and just needed a good friend.’
‘You’re just too sweet.’ she said and kissed him. ‘That’s how you got me so beware.’
He snickered and closed his eyes holding Ara’s hand. ‘I’m sure my animal magnetism won’t work on every girl that comes here.’
‘I wonder.’ Ara whispered and got back to sleep too.
The next morning breakfast was set and Cani went to Mami to wake her up. Feli saw her looking inside the room and wagging her tail hard suddenly.
‘What is it?’ she asked getting closer.
Cani looked at her with big cheerful eyes. ‘So adorable..’
Now Feli saw Mami sleeping, curled up with Mouse. ‘Oh, that’s so cute.’
The others came to see what was going on and smiled.
Mami woke up from the noise, rubbed her eyes and saw everyone smiling at her.
‘What!?’ she said sitting up and clutching Mouse for protection.
‘Adorable!’ Cani said, pounced her and cuddled her while Mami protested. ‘What!? Let me go!’
They others watched the scene trying to hold back their laughter for a moment, then Guy clapped his hands. ‘All right, break it up. Let’s have breakfast.’
At the table Mami kept close to Guy, glancing at Cani who watched her with a wagging tail.
‘Miss Thesa is sending a crew over today to add another apartment to ours. We’ll get a bigger kitchen because this one’s way too small now and a bigger bathroom.’
‘Nice.’ Feli said. ‘It’s too cramped when making dinner.’
‘Oh, I don’t mind cramped when it’s my turn to help Guy.’ Ara said smirking.
Guy blushed a little at the memory of last time, when Ara almost constantly rubbed her legs and leaned her chest against him.
Mami looked at his face and frowned. ‘Pervert.’
‘What!?’ he asked feighning innocence.
‘Don’t mind him.’ Ara said. ‘He has a hard time being burdened with four girlfriends.’
Mami stared at the girls. ‘You..?’
Feli nodded. ‘Hadn’t you noticed yet?’
Mami looked at Guy blushing. ‘And then they say I’m the criminal.’
The girls laughed while Guy muttered how he couldn’t help it.