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Puppy squats

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Waking up early on Saturday morning was one of the very few downsides to Shiro’s newest fling. Keith’s alarm blared at 6:30 on the dot, his garbage top 40 Pump Up Hits playlist filling the small room with a sugary, enthusiastic riff that felt like it should be illegal before coffee. The noise halted abruptly with the slap of Keith’s groggy hand onto the nightstand. Empty cans rattled and tumbled to the carpet. 

Keith uncurled the rest of his body from deep under the covers and moved away from where he’d been nestled against Shiro. A warm tingle spread from Shiro’s gut up to his chest and he smiled watching Keith stretch and yawn, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. Maybe fling wasn’t quite the correct word for their particular arrangement, but Shiro dismissed the thought as soon as it crossed his mind. 

“Mornin’ princess,” Keith murmured with a lethargic smirk. “Might need to freshen up the eyeliner before we head out.” He leaned in and kissed the corner of Shiro’s mouth before he could reply. 

Shiro laughed and leaned into the kiss, pressing his lips against Keith’s despite the stale-beer taste and morning breath he knew they’d both have. “You want the bathroom first?” He muttered against Keith’s neck as he followed the trail of bruises he’d left the previous night. 

Keith hummed contentedly for a moment, leaning into Shiro’s embrace. Shiro nipped lightly at Keith’s collarbone and smiled at the harsh intake of breath it drew from Keith’s chest. “Going once,” he teased, pushing Keith over to straddle his hips and continue his downward path. 

A fist curled into Shiro’s unruly bedhead, tugging gently to pull his lips from Keith’s chest. “Yeah, practice at 7:30,” Keith grumbled, disappointment crawling into his words. 

Shiro followed the slow movement of Keith’s hand in his hair, letting his head be dragged away with little resistance. “We should get lunch after.” 

Keith rolled off the bed to stand and stretch again, smiling as he noticed Shiro’s eyes roving across every inch of his exposed skin. “No vegan-only places. I’m gonna need actual protein, not chickpeas and avocados or whatever.” 

“I guess I can tolerate you murdering helpless animals for the sake of football,” Shiro retorted playfully, rolling his eyes. 

Their eating habits were a constant minor quibble turned inside joke. To Keith’s credit, he’d actually cut down his meat consumption a lot since they’d started seeing each other, and even with little urging on Shiro’s part other than a few drunken rants about the horrors of the meat and dairy industries. They hadn’t talked much about it aside from the joking, but Shiro had noticed and couldn’t help but find it sweet. 

Keith didn’t rise to the bait, instead leaning over to kiss Shiro’s cheek before heading into the hallway toward the bathroom. As soon as the door was open, Kosmo’s tail started blazing and he let out an excited yip. Keith laughed and leaned down to pet him. 

“Aw, someone’s happy his exile is over. Maybe you’ll think twice about jumping on the bed when daddy’s railing his boyfriend next time,” Keith cooed, laughing through his baby-talk babble as Kosmo licked at his face. 

Shiro wrinkled his nose at Keith’s phrasing but couldn’t help the laughter that bubbled out of his chest and shook his shoulders. Keith turned back and winked, pushing past Kosmo on his way to the bathroom. He stared into the open doorway even after Keith and his dog had gone, letting his mind wander. 

Boyfriend… It all seemed so strange, but not in a bad way. They’d started as a no strings attached physical arrangement that Shiro had been desperately trying to pretend was still in place for months, despite the sleepovers and late night pillowtalk resting in each other’s arms, not to mention his willingness to be awake before noon on a Saturday. The realization that he had been hopelessly falling for Keith the entire time came over him all at once. 

Before he could think too heavily on the subject, Kosmo bounded into the room and leapt up onto the bed, covering Shiro in drool as he licked every inch of Shiro’s face. Shiro laughed and half-heartedly tried to push the dog away. He was too distracted to hear Keith return to the bedroom, but all at once Kosmo was hefted into the air, freeing Shiro from his slobbery prison. 

“Kosmo, no eating guests!” Keith admonished with a laugh, hugging the gargantuan dog to his chest like he weighed nothing. 

The sight warmed Shiro’s heart as much as it heated his loins. He sat up and wiped the drool from his face with the blankets, letting them pile at his waist when he was finished. 

Kosmo wriggled in Keith’s arms, tail still blazing. His head thrashed against Keith’s chest, tongue lolling around his open mouth in a desperate attempt to lick Keith’s face. 

“Uh oh, I guess it’s time for Puppy Squats!” The cheerful call made Kosmo stop squirming quite as much, but his tail continued to thump against Keith’s ribs. 

Shiro raised a skeptical eyebrow. “Puppy squats?” 

Keith nodded and set his feet shoulder-width apart, springing onto the balls of his feet and bending his knees until he found the right position. He hefted Kosmo up higher on his chest and lowered himself into a perfect squat and then back up again. 

“One Puppy Squat,” Keith said with a smile, grinning even wider when Kosmo answered with a loud woof. 

He repeated the motion, dipping down and back up again. “Two Puppy Squat.” Kosmo barked again and they repeated the motion. 

Shiro stared in stunned silence as they continued until Keith got to “Ten Puppy Squat,” and Kosmo grew bored of the game, writhing against him until Keith finally released him with a laugh. “Those are Puppy Squats,” he explained, smirking at the awe still covering Shiro’s face. 

“Wow,” Shiro finally replied. I love him. He blinked a few times and cleared his throat, unprepared for that particular discussion so early in the morning with the clock ticking away until Keith had to rush off to the field. “Maybe you should take Kosmo to practice with you, show the whole team your intense training methods.” 

Keith flopped back down on the bed and flicked a lock of stray hair off of Shiro’s chest. “Nah, he’s got good hustle, but his ball handling kinda sucks. Always bites holes in them.” 

Shiro laughed and leaned down to kiss the top of Keith’s head. They couldn’t afford to spend the time on another distracted make-out session, so Shiro begrudgingly rolled himself over Keith and headed into the bathroom. The sight of his own small cosmetics bag on Keith’s vanity made him pause as he reached for the small bottle of makeup remover inside. 

He already had personal effects at Keith’s apartment. Things had gotten far more out of hand than he’d ever thought possible, especially without any conscious decision-making on his part. Shaking off the thought, Shiro scrubbed the day old paint from his face and decided the effort of redoing it all could wait until he was back at his own apartment and could have this particular existential crisis in the comfort of his own bathroom.