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"Are you sure you wanna do this, Galo?"


Aina eyed the pile of objects in Galo's arms with an eyebrow raised as she watched him scramble around the firehouse. She sighed, shaking her head. This situation was getting nowhere. Mad Burnish and Burning Rescue practically merged together with approval from the Captain. While Ignis knew Mad Burnish had their own ways of dealing with their problems, he allows them to stay. So long as his team doesn't do anything foolish.


Which ended up happening anyway.


It's been several months since Galo met Lio. They grew closer as a pair, doing almost everything together. Eating together, chilling out in the living room together and even going as far as bathing together since their bond was so strong. It wasn't long before Galo began to realize he might have stronger feelings for his new best friend. He grew to absolutely adore Lio and everything he does, from the way he fights to the way he sneezes. It took a bit of pushing from Aina and shoving from Lucia for Galo to ask Lio to be his boyfriend.


“Were…we not already dating, Galo?” was his response.


 It floored Galo when Lio giggled and pressed his soft lips to Galo’s cheek. Hot. A fire specifically for Lio grew a bit brighter and stronger, Galo grinned, grabbing his new boyfriend and spinning around while Lio was sent into a fit of laughter until they tumbled to the common room couch.


When Galo met Lio's other close friends, Meis, Guiera and Thyma, he did his best to make an official first impression since when they first met, it was the three of them when they went on as Mad Burnish without Lio and their meeting wasn't on good terms.


Thyma, upon meeting Galo and Aina again, she started off thoroughly apologizing to Galo, Galo assuring her that it was alright and Aina thoroughly apologizing to Thyma, leaving Lio very confused until it was explained to him about what happened in the past. He understood although it was from then on, he was a bit more wary of Aina. It was the third time Galo was meeting Guiera and Meis. They made a pact to one another to tease the ever-loving hell out of Galo just for the fun of it.


"Yeah? I don't complain about you taking care of Thyma. Well...Lio does cause he's worried about her." Galo pouted then adding "He thinks you might hurt her again." To which Aina's cheeks heated up until she was bright red, exclaiming and she threw light punches to her coworker’s arm, "That was an accident! You could've gotten hurt! I did get hurt--And I--Shut up!"


Galo laughed. "I'm still alive and kicking! Nothing can extinguish my burning soul! Anyway, just take care of her and Lio will be happy." He managed to dump all the objects in question in a tote bag that Aina kept around for groceries and excess things. It was her and Ignis who did most of the food shopping anyway as the others would harass them for snacks.


A ball of yarn, a fluffy pillow, that new game Lio was saving up for, a bell with a clip attached to the top, some sweets, and even a teddy bear for good measure although these objects will have to suffice.


"It's not just Lio. It's Guiera and Meis too. They're all protective of her." Aina leaned against the wall. "They're like us: A family. I mean, I totally get it! I acc-i-dent-ally shot Thyma. They wouldn't trust me." She sighed, "But I mean her no harm! Besides, it's pretty nice to have another girl around. I love Lucia and Heris. I love Thyma. We're like our own little friend group while you guys do stupid shit."


"What? Do have a crush on her?” Galo teased. Aina with a blush so bright, sent him a glare so harsh that, to Galo, it could rival Lio’s. “Anyway…Newsflash, Aina, you still follow us guys when we do stupid shit. Plus, even Lucia joins too!" Galo then took the tote and slid one strap over his shoulder. Same for the other. He managed to turn it into a makeshift backpack. It didn’t look right whatsoever but the fireman beamed like he just created something innovative.


"Don't you dare rip my bag--wait! That's not the point!" She stamped her foot. They waltzed into the kitchen. A few visible snack boxes had different colored sticky notes on it with names on them. Blue for Galo, green for Lio, yellow for Thyma, pink for Lucia, purple for Aina (and sometimes Heris), Orange for Varys, Red for Ignis, teal for Remi and white for Guiera and Meis.


If someone's sticky note fell off a snack or beverage, it was free reign for everyone else in the Fire station.


Last time that happened, almost everyone began accusing each other. It wasn't pretty.


"Uh huh! Remember that one-time Varys and I had that buffet eating contest? And Remi and Lucia took bets? I heard you even bet twenty bucks against me! I totally could’ve eaten all those noodles just fine!"


"That very restaurant which you two were banned from!" She yanked open the freezer, mumbling “I made the right choice in the end.” As she rummaged through endless frozen treats and pizzas.


"It was All-You-Can-Eat!" Galo protested, stashing some cheez-its in the bag.


Aina sighed, grabbing her small pint of fudge brownie ice cream and shut the freezer door. She proceeded to get one of the biggest spoons available and dig in.


"Lio gave you his blessing. Only cause Meis and Guiera fuck like rabbits and can't keep quiet enough for him and Thyma to focus on their work and duties. The studying to being a firefighter, readjusting to normal life, and being landlords, according to Lio. Which is the very reason why he decided to finally live with me." Galo looked around for his keys. Aina rolled her eyes and pointed towards the coffee table after another scoop.


"I... Didn’t need to know that. About Meis and Guiera." She groaned dramatically. "Anyway...Did Lucia ever tell you about a way to fix Lio's condition?"


A mishap that occurred one day. Lucia, the mad scientist-mechanic she is, doesn't only work on mechas but other devices that can help push society foreword (in hopes of becoming rich) and to help those in need.


"I need a test subject!" Lucia called out and practically jumped out of her chair. "For what now?" Remi looked up from his desk, shuffling papers aside. "It's to make you stronger without the training. It takes a sample of DNA and helps you big time."


"How is it supposed to get your DNA? Does it-"


"You get pricked with a needle. It takes your blood."


Thyma gasped. Guiera scoffed. Remi rolled his eyes. Galo huffed, putting on a brave smile.


"Ooh! Oh! Lemme try it!" Galo waved his hands frantically and ran towards the mechanist, a term Aina and Galo liked to call Lucia. Mechanist, being a scientist and mechanic. Lucia took a liking to it and dubbed herself to be just that.


Running full speed, Galo didn’t have time to slow his pace once he saw a flash of greenish-blonde hair. "Fuck! Wah! Lio look ou-oof!" He tripped right into the blonde and sent him falling into the machine. The door to the pod closed and the machine started up. Mad Burning Rescue only watched in shock then panic once the machine began to shake and breakdown, electricity flying around everywhere. "Lio!!" Galo, Varys, Meis and Guiera tried to pry the door off while Captain Ignis hopped over the couch and slammed his fist against the Emergency Shut Off button. The lights went red. Everything stopped. Everything went dark, with the exception of the Emergency lights. That didn't stop the four from successfully ripping the door off, much to Lucia’s dismay. Smoke poured out from the pod. Aina and Thyma dashed over to pull Lio out as she let out a loud gasp. "L-Lio?? Are you feeling okay?" She held him close to her chest, feeling his heartbeat and checking for pulse.


“Lio! Lemme get a hold of him!” Galo slid towards the trio huddled on the ground, gently taking him and cradling him, “Lio, you gotta talk to me! Say something, please…”


"I feel..." Lio muttered and clutched the top of his head, flinching when he felt something soft. "What the hell?!" He shot up. "Oh my god..."


Aina gaped. Remi’s eyes were wide. Varys raised an eyebrow and Lucia looked neutral until she noticed details.


"How the hell did cat DNA get in my- Galo! Was it Kaku?!  Was it Sei?!” She yelled, turning her attention to her damaged machine.


"No, not yet. But Lio's still the same as he ever was. Just..." Galo blinked, thinking about his new roommate and lover. It hasn't been very long, a week at most, when Galo kept tabs on Lio. He mostly kept to himself, curled up on the couch, under a thick blanket. Sometimes Galo would see the slight swish of a tail from underneath the cover or the twitch of perked up ears. Most times, though, Galo would see those bright sunset eyes peering at him and hands clinging to one of Galo's shirts. He knew he was fucked and had it bad. Every little thing Lio did was either cute or hot. Or both.


"Yeah, everything is normal."




Everything was different. It had been one month after Lio has moved in with Galo. Even though they were practically living together before since Galo had him come over so many times that he upped and had a spare key made just for the burnish. One month for Galo to realize how Lio's condition was affecting him. Lio was clingy, following Galo all around the one bedroom apartment and latching onto him every chance he got. “You’re so warm…” Lio would nuzzle his cheek against Galo’s while subconsciously tickling his nose, kiss him all over and trying to keep Galo’s attention on him all the time. He was no better than the two fluffy cats that already occupy the home.


 Galo concluded that would have to urge Lucia to work on her antidote that caused his boyfriend to be like this: a human with catlike features. Cat ears. Cat tail. Cat-like behavior. And after gaining these traits, Lio became a brat.


("To be fair, the Boss was always a brat but whatever that machine did amplified that." Meis told Galo over the phone when the fireman was trying to get Lio from the top of the bookshelf after refusing to let Galo wash his favorite shirt.)



Currently, as Galo seared some steak on the pan, Lio was perched on the counter in such a position that it reminded Galo of a bunny. With eyes locked on the meat, licking his lips and his tail swishing back and forth, Lio murmured, "Is dinner almost ready? It smells really good, Galo." He nearly reached for the steak right there in the pan when Galo grabbed his wrist and frowned, "You're gonna burn yourself, babe. You’re not a burnish anymore, remember? I mean, of course I’m qualified to treat burns, but I don’t want you to get hurt." He kissed it.


"I can handle the heat." Lio blushed as he pouted childishly, cheeks slightly puffed.


"I know, I know. You're cute when you're hungry.” Galo scratched behind his cat ears. They were soft to the touch and delicate but Lio didn’t seem to mind whenever Galo would just play with his ears. They twitched for a moment as Lio purred and rubbed his head under Galo’s hand. “Heh. Here. Nibble on this." Galo, who had a plate sitting beside him (and away from his favorite catboy), uncovered it and cut off a piece of already cooked meat. The moment it was uncovered, Lio's eyes lit up, "Hell yeah! Feed it to me?" His pupils grew wide as he opened his mouth with an "Aah!"


Galo huffed a laugh and fed him. Lio smiled, making little happy noises as he chewed. Oh god, he's adorable.


"How about you go play with the game for a bit til dinner's ready, yeah?" He gently patted Lio's head with one hand and flipped the meat with the spatula with the other. “But-!” Lio tried to protest but Galo was having none of it. “Up, up, up! Out you go. I’ll grab you when it’s ready.” He leaned in to kiss his cheek with a loud “Mwah!” before scooping Lio up off the counter and jogging over to the couch to set him down on top of his favorite blanket. He grabbed the pink and teal game console, placing it in small hands. “I got you that new game everyone’s been talking about online. You know, that one with the person and a town full of animal people? You’re gonna love it! I play the mobile one on my phone. Its great! Have fun!” Galo jogged back into the kitchen.


Once carrots were chopped up, leafy greens were wash and broccoli was steamed, chef Galo began the plating process. He took out two square-ish plates. A couple scoops of the veggies and cups of fruit punch juice were poured. He hummed happily as he set the two plates down.


“Lio, baby, dinner’s ready!”


Shuffling sounds quickly approached as Lio dashed to the table, ready to dig in when his face fell and his expression instantly soured. Lio stared at his food as if it were to attack him, tail slowly moving back and forth like a cat ready to attack its prey. “Uh…Babes?” Galo munched on some broccoli.


"This was a setup!" Lio hissed, ears flat against his head. “This was a fucking set up!”


"Was not. You gotta eat your veggies so you can get big and strong." Galo flexed his muscles to prove a point. He smirked triumphantly when he saw Lio turn red and having his gaze held onto his biceps, his tail stilling.


"Strong?! I am strong. I even best you more than you best me in training and you know it, Thymos." Lio huffed and turned his nose up as if he were superior to vegetables.


"Pwuff fafe fa besf parr fow wasf!" Galo nearly choked after speaking with his mouth full of carrots, earning a rightful scowl from his sweet boyfriend.


"Save the best part for last, my ass! I don't want these. Asparagus is absolutely disgusting as well as celery. I'm not a rabbit, Galo. Give me the steak."


"No, you're not a rabbit. You're a catboy but even cats eat veggies, Lio, you can't not have veggies in your diet. They help you grow and live longer! They give you more energy and keep you going plus they’re full of vitamins, fiber and minerals. They're essential to your body, you know and-"




Then a deafening silence.


Galo stared down a glaring Lio Fotia as tension was rapidly growing. He hasn’t seen that glare since his first ever physical fight with Lio back before they saved the universe. "Lio...please don't tell me..." his eyes shifted down to find an empty space on the place mat. That was a gift from one of the old ladies from the nursing home. While it wasn’t his absolute favorite, it still held a bit of sentimental value to him. With a sigh, Galo got up and went to where Lio's dinner plate crashed into the wall and bits of carrots and broccoli and various leafy greens were scattered everywhere.


He took a photo and sent it to Meis, and Thyma with a caption 'Help me 😖😖😖'


After sliding his phone in his pocket, Galo cleaned up the food then swept up the glass. When going back to the dinner table, Galo frowned. His steak was gone. Apparently Lio had stolen three-fourths of Galo's steak but the thief himself was no longer at the dinner table. He began to search high and low in all of Lio’s hiding spots until he heard a quiet smacking from behind the couch and the light-colored tail sticking out from Lio’s spot.


"What the-?! Lio!!" Galo caught him by surprise like a deer in headlights. Then actually caught him as Lio tried to make his daring escape. He squirmed and wriggled, barely managing to escape. He tried to wrestle the meat from Lio, but the small Burnish yanked and pulled in a serious game of ‘Keep-away’, "No! I wanted the steak and you wouldn't give. I wanted it so...I just took it. It's what I'm used to."


"But you're not on the run anymore!"


"Just let it go, Galo!"


"Fine!" He let go and watched Lio tumble backward and onto his ass, scaring the other two house cats, “Ow!” Galo’s heart dropped to his stomach. "Shit. Shit. Shitshitshitshitshit!!" He rushed down to Lio's side, "I'm sorry, are you alright?" he cradled the smaller figure in his arms and rubbed his bum, kissing the side of the burnish’s head until Lio scrambled away.


"Leave me alone to eat in peace." He turned his back, grumbling away.


That set Galo ablaze. Was he angry? Not really. Upset was more like it. He stood and frowned, raising his voice but not quite yelling, “Lio!” he was met with fierce sunset eyes. Galo almost faltered but managed to stand his ground.


"I can't believe you! All cause you didn't wanna eat your veggies? Not only have you wasted good food, but you also broke a plate, and took my food, Lio! Luckily you didn't hurt yourself." He crossed his arms and paced around for a while, trying to calm down before freezing for a moment, "Why does this feel familiar?"


His answer came in the form of a text message


It was Aina. Galo grumbled. He trusted Thyma to not tell Aina because telling Aina would be like saying he couldn't handle it. Galo could handle this. It was like a challenge he couldn’t refuse.


💪Aina 🍒

He's misbehaving? Put him in time out. [7:23 p.m.]



How?!? He doesn't listen to me! He just broke a plate cuz he didn’t want his veggies [7:25 p.m.]


💪Aina 🍒

Maybe ask M and G. Im p sure Thyma doesnt kno how to deal w bratty lio [7:32 p.m.]



Im scared 😥😥😥 [7:38 p.m.]


💪Aina 🍒

I will spill your secrets. So, help me, Galo Thymos, if Lio goes into work grumpy and uncooperative, I will EXPOSE you. 😡😡😡😠😠😠 [7:38 p.m.]


Galo physically winced. "Damn, she's scary..." He typed in a quick 'OKAY! ' And at that moment, a message from Meis popped up in his notifications.


🤠 Meis 🔥♣️

Have u to fcked? Mayb its sexual frustration 😏😏😏 [7:39 p.m.]


Galo turned red after reading the message. He gasped and stared at the text on screen, gaining Lio's attention once he finished off the steak. He narrowed his eyes, his tail moving slowly from side to side before curling around Galo's leg. "What are you up to?" He pressed himself against Galo's warm chest. It’s a tactic Lio likes to use when he’s trying to get his way. It almost always works, unfortunately for Galo.


"Huh?!" He squeaked, hiding the message. Galo loved Lio to bits and pieces but this-


This was too embarrassing.


"Uhh hummm nothing!" His voice was pitched a bit higher.


"You know you're a horrible liar." Lio drew circles on his chest, his voice dropping to a sultry tone. His tail kept brushing against his abdomen. “Please, Galo? You wouldn’t hide anything from me, right?”


"R-Really, Lio, it's nothing!" They were pressed together against the wall. The faint sound of gentle music, a trumpet and guitar, emanated from the game system resting on the couch. Lio smiled, batting his long eyelashes, moving his tail up and down in the slowest manner he could do. All signs of seduction went completely over Galo’s head. While they have been dating for quite a while, sex wasn’t talked about once. He never realized that Lio tried his hardest to get his love to sleep with him or that he himself was making Lio flustered more and more each time he walked around practically naked.


"Hand it over." Lio stated, rather softly. He stood on his toes and kissed along Galo's neck. Light and feathery


"You...You should get some sleep!" Galo was a sucker for Lio's neck kisses. He couldn't let himself be tempted by this. No matter how good it felt.


"Hand it over." Lio was adamant now. He glared up, his bangs shadowing most of his eyes. A sense of nostalgia washed over Galo, to when they first had their encounter. It made him smile.


"Let's get you cleaned up, okay?" Deviating wasn't his strong suit.


"Hand it over, Galo." This time, Lio used his Mad Burnish leader voice.




Galo was just about ready to do so when another text popped up.


🤠 Meis 🔥♣️

Give him the good ol 🍆 👉👌👅💦 and 🙋♂️🍑💥  [8:04 p.m.]


"What?! What does that mean??" Galo shrieked out loud, startling Lio so much that he nearly leaped to the sofa.


🤠 Meis 🔥♣️

Sorry. Guiera got to my phone before I could. [8:04 p.m.]



Its fine 😶😶😶 what does that second one mean though? [8:06 p.m.]


“Bath time, Lio!” and Galo could hear whining before the sound of water running in the bathroom.


🤠 Meis 🔥♣️

Anyway, he's right though. Take charge or whatever. Nothing speaks louder than sex [8:07 p.m.]



What about talking to each other? [8:10 p.m.]


🤠 Meis 🔥♣️

Just go and I'm sure he'll behave. It wouldn't be the first time that worked. Gnite. [8:15 p.m.]



Okay! Thanks! 😃 [8: 17 p.m.]


Galo realized that something was off.



Wait What? [8:18 p.m.]



Meis??? [8:18 p.m.]



Meis????!!!! [8:18 p.m.]


By this time, Lio was already out of the bath and now laying on top of Galo in contentment.  He was squeaky clean. Galo didn’t pay attention to his lover while he wracked his brain on what Meis could’ve possible mean in the texts, Lio was too busy into his game, "Oh, hi there, Cherry. Are you moving in?” He yawned, “Going to bed or what? I'm sleepy and I wanna cuddle." Lio declared. That pouty face he was giving Galo was another of his ways of getting what he wants. Galo looked down and bit his lip, minding that Lio's hands were on his chest once again.


His hands and long fingernails.


Sharp. Long. Fingernails.


Don't play into his hands.


"I have to finish cleaning the mess, firebug." Galo gently gripped Lio's hands in his own. "Once I finish cleaning, then we can cuddle to your heart's content." He took a chance and kissed Lio's forehead. “Okay? Will you wait for me, Lio?”


Lio's tail flicked and twitched for a moment. "I'll be asleep once you're done. I'd rather fall asleep with you."


Another buzz in his pocket


😇Thyma 🔥♥️

Is everything ok now? [10:43 p.m.]


😈Guiera 🔥♦️

Did u take my advice? [10:59 p.m.]


 The night just seems to go on and on.



As a means of apology, Galo grabbed the blanket and began tucking themselves in. Lio smiled and hummed a little tune. "Snuggly...G'night, Galo..." he purred, rubbing his cheek against Galo's chest. The fireman sighed. Lio knew that Galo could fall asleep to him purring! But right now, he needed to finish cleaning the mess in the kitchen.


I'll just wait until he sleeps and then I'll finish cleaning. Yeah, sounds like a plan!


"Night, Lio." He said with such fondness as he gently scratched behind his ears. He could hear a faint purr and a little bit of a giggle as he did so.


"Mmmmhmm..." Lio peeked up and eyed him as if he wanted something. Lio always wanted something but this time, Galo couldn't place what he wanted. He leaned forward and pressed his lips to his lover's then sat for a moment. Galo, the most obvious thing flying over his head, merely blinked at Lio. The catboy grumbled, "Tch...never mind. Goodnight, Galo. I…” he ducked under the blanket.






He didn’t miss this one: “I love you too, Lio. Sweet dreams.”


An hour or so passed when Galo finally got up. It took the most effort to keep quiet than pry a sleeping Lio from his waist and quickly replacing himself with Lio’s plush pillow of the promare. Which Thyma made for him. Galo took one last look at Lio’s sleeping form. The soft sound of Lio snoring made him smile. Life was good. He shut the door and shuffled towards the kitchen to tackle the task of washing dishes, sweeping and mopping, and cleaning the countertops .


By the time morning came and sunlight peeked through the curtains, Lio woke, feeling grumpy. Galo made it his job to sneak out of bed and make the best breakfast for Lio along with the morning coffee and was absolutely sure that Lio, not being fully wake, is perfect for him to eat his vegetables.




Galo was wrong.


"Oh my god, I need help." He whispered, showing Aina the mess of eggs with tomato and spinach on the floor. They were on a video call. It was a routine that Aina and Galo did every morning, even if Thyma now lived there as well. He could see Thyma in the background brushing her hair in the mirror, still in her pajamas. Aina, on the other hand, was practically ready for the day. She hummed, filling a tea pot with water. "Should we come over then?” He shook his head.


“You need to have a face-to-face meeting with at least Meis. I’m one hundred percent sure he knows how to deal with Lio.” Aina pressed on, “Speaking of which, where is he?”

“In the shower but I did ask and…The answer he gave me was a bit…y’know…Sexual. I even asked Guiera! Kinda? His suggestion was like the one Meis gave me but more…lewd.”


“Galo, you fucking- “


“-Sweetheart!” Thyma cut her off and bounced into frame, giving him a tired smile, “He was messing with you. You know how he is. I’m sure they weren’t being serious.” Aina laid her head on Thyma’s shoulder, sipping her morning tea.


“I can’t tell when they are fucking with me, Thyma. Meis always seems so serious and Guiera always looks like he’s gonna deck me in the face if I look at any of you wrong.”


Aina groaned dramatically, rolling her eyes. “Fine. If I set something up between you and Meis, you have to go.”






“Bye!” was the last thing Galo heard, Thyma’s voice right after Aina’s, before the call was hung up.


   When Meis let up and decided to meet with Galo to discuss Lio, it was Galo who made him stay home. They wouldn’t be able to formulate a proper plan with him there whining and vying for Galo’s attention. As expected, there was whining and pouting and even biting. Playful biting but Galo faked being hurt to get Lio to stop. “You gotta stay here, firebug. I know you’re practically attached to the hip with me but why not spend some time with Guiera? You haven’t seen him in a while! It would be nice to catch up, riiight?”


“Well…Yeah…I do miss him a lot.” Grumbling, Lio turned his back, finding the bell Galo had gotten him much more interesting.

“And if you’re good, I’ll bring you back some sweets!” Galo slid his arms around Lio’s waist from behind, leaning in to kiss his cheek. Lio froze, his body temperature skyrocketing. He knew how oblivious Galo was and knew that he was only being sincere so Lio decided to not point out the feeling of something pressing against his lower back. “Like a Mr. Goodbar or Reeses pieces. Wait can you even have chocolate? Oh my god, will you die if I- “

“Shut up. I won’t die. I’ve eaten stuff that would’ve killed me already if I was a complete cat.” Lio tried to not focus on the feeling.


You shut up!” Galo spun him around and gripped Lio’s hands, his face completely serious. “I’ve almost lost you once before, I don’t want to lose you again. I was so scared that you wouldn’t make it… Lucky that you pulled through, thanks to me, of course.” Galo chuckled, “You…You mean the world to me, firebug. I wouldn’t know what to do with myself if I lost you- “


Galo was silenced by a sweet and short kiss, “I told you to shut up…” he could see the failed attempt of Lio hiding a smile. “Ah, there’s my cute little kitten!”


Lio tilted his head. “Kitten?”

“Spice things up, you know?”

His eyes widened, “Really?”


The fireman nodded, “Of course and- “They both jumped at the sound of a loud bang, bang, bang! And a “Yo, open up, Thymos!” was heard, clear as day. One fluffy ball scampered underneath the couch. The other, though out of sight, accidently knocked over what sounded like one of Galo’s anime figurines over.


Seeing as Galo was fairly shaken up screeching a little, Lio burst into laughter, doubling over. Galo, heart a flutter and biting his lip, felt like he was falling in love all over again, “I’ll be t-there in a second!” Once he regained his composure, Lio smiled, ears perked up. He gently pulled Galo forward and kissed him. Soft, nice, fluttery, nice. Before Galo could get lost in the pure feeling of love, Lio pulled away once he heard a lighter knock on the door. “You better get going. I’ll be patient and you better make do on your promise to bring me back treats.” His tail half way curled around Galo’s thigh. Lio’s innocent smile turned to a sly smirk, “And hurry back to me, Galo.”




     It didn’t take Galo very long to get to the coffee shop, a local landmark in Promepolis. Maribelle’s Bakery, a well-known café and bakery. It was elegant and minimalistic and beloved by the citizens of the town. The owner, Maribelle, would never fail to greet her customers with a warm smile. Her blonde curls were held back in a ponytail accompanied with a large bow. “Welcome to- “She glanced up from the small paper of the tally of tips. She beamed at the sight of one of her valued customers. “Oh! Hello, Galo! Meis is here already to meet with you. I’ll have your usual in just a few.” She smiled, her accent made it obvious that she was from Britain. Kinda like Lio.


    A flash of white hair whirled past him, “Sorry!” a man grinned as he moved away, being followed by Maribelle’s husband, a man with orange hair and a lollipop stick stuck from out his mouth.
“I swear to God, Henry!” the two of them ran towards the kitchen, rushing past Maribelle herself. She rolled her eyes and stalked toward the back, most likely to chew them out.


    Galo carefully moved out of the way once he spotted Meis sitting in window booth. It was lightly raining out. “Hey, cowboy.” He did the finger guns. The latter didn’t look impressed. “Hey yourself, fireman.” He gestured to the seat in front of them. In front of Meis was a small journal. “Poetry?” Galo nodded towards it. “Song lyrics. Every now and again, I sing for Guiera. And Thyma. And Lio. And the other Burnish. It helps put them at ease.” He shut it so Galo couldn’t snag a peak. A woman with two blonde pigtails strolled up with a tray in her hands. “A double mocha cappuccino with extra whipped cream for a mister Galo Thymos.” She set the cup down. “And a black coffee with one sugar and a dash of caramel syrup for Meisy.” The waitress set the second cup down. “Will that be all?” She gave a bright smile. Galo tilted his head, “Are you new here?”


“Oh no, I’m just a volunteer here. Maribelle is my best friend so I help whenever I can!”


“Well, I like your attitude! Also, may I have a box of half-a-dozen sugar cookies and the other half extra fudge chocolate chip cookies? Please?” He handed her a twenty-dollar bill. “Will do!” The waitress bounced off, humming a tune to herself.


Meis cleared his throat to gain Galo’s attention.

“So. Let’s talk about Lio.”