The Runt: Discovery
It was sunlight that made Tod groan, its rays intensified by the fallen snow. The little pup tried pulling the covers over his head to block the searing white glow but a spat of coughing brought him to a sitting position, his shoulders shaking as he tried to bring his coughing fit under control. From the other side of the room came the sound of a stifled yawn.
From those sheets emerged a disgruntled looking Shade, his ears drooping and lopsided. He rubbed his eyes blearily, let out a burp and glanced around the room before glaring at the window and it's open shade. His gaze settled on Tod sitting up in his bed and he immediately turned to a prone form at his side that Tod hadn't noticed before. He smacked the lower end of the lump, which in turn grunted an unintelligible curse but otherwise remained hunkered down in the covers.
"Oy, Dante. Tod's up."
"Hm, what's up?"
"Why is Tod up?"
"I don't know, maybe because it's morning? Now quit being a twit and get up. We need to wake up the others."
Dante soon crawled out of the sheets and prodded another prone figure that was snuggled tight against the wall, causing it to growl and swear undying vengeance on their house and hearth in Eric's voice. While Dante continued to prodding and coaxing Eric to abandon the warmth of his bed, Shade padded over to Tod.
"Hey kiddo, how you feeling today?"
Tod gave a non-committal shrug and a weak smile. His head hurt and his chest felt like it was full of mud, not to mention the dull, throbbing ache in his rear. His stomach was a roiling mess as well, and he really needed to pee.
"I do have to pee..."
Tod crawled out of bed, swaying gently as a wave of dizziness hit him. Shade caught his shoulder and looked at Tod carefully.
"You sure you can make it there okay? Dante? Dante! You're potty detail!"
"Get Tod to the bathroom and make sure he doesn't collapse on the way!"
"God, you're annoying in the morning..."
Shade smirked and gently nudged Tod towards Dante who sullenly tugged on a pair of pants. Considering their size, Tod assumed they were Eric's. Taking Tod's paw in his own, Dante led the pup out of the room and down the hall. The house had the sleepy quality of early morning in the middle of winter, even though it was nowhere near that far into the season. Tod blamed the chill air as he shivered along down the hallway. When they reached the bathroom, it was pitch dark. Tod looked up to the skylight in confusion but could make out no details in the inky blackness above. Dante flicked the light switch to reveal that there was a layer of thick snow over the window. He laughed and pointed upwards at it.
"Heh, you could probably make a snowman with how much snow is on the window. I don't even want to think of how snow is on the roof. And to think, kids are going to be trudging through that tonight."
"Yeah, it's...Oh, yeah! I forgot. Well, it's Halloween Tod! To make it simple, long ago, people believed ghosts of our ancestors returned on Halloween night and people dressed in costumes of ghosts, ghouls, and other things to either scare away the spirits, to avoid catching their attention, or to make them feel at home, all depending on where you go to celebrate it. But, nowadays, kids mostly dress up spooky and walk around and knock on doors, say 'Trick or treat', and they get free candy."
Tod's brow furrowed.
"What does that mean? Trick or treat?"
"Oh, well, you say that, and if someone doesn't give you a treat, like candy, then you play a prank on them. Egg their house, superglue their door shut, stuff like that. But mostly it's just a tradition."
Tod nodded as he walked up to the toilet. Lifting the seat, Tod began relieving himself as Dante explained about the various traditions of Halloween and where they came from. Tod enjoyed listening to Dante talk. He seemed really smart, and he told him so.
"Smart? Me? Ha! You're funny! I'm middle of my class, and I have detention once a week. I'm just knowledgeable about stuff that I find interesting. Want to know about the South American burrowing worm that hides in mud and burrows into your feet if you aren't wearing good boots?"
Tod flushed the toilet and glanced uneasily at Dante.
"There...there are worms that do that?"
"Probably, but I was just making that up."
Tod laughed weakly, but it subsided into a fit of coughing that ended up doubling him over. He felt Dante's reassuring paw rubbing his back to comfort him until he had calmed down enough to stand up again. When he could breathe once more, Tod stood with a groan. His head felt like someone with a tiny hammer was testing the back of his skull for weak spots.
"So, kids walk around to houses and people give them candy?"
"All of them?"
"Yeah, parents dress up their kids and pretty much turn them loose. I remember one year I was out until nearly midnight with a couple of old friends. We did as much egging as we did candy snagging, and we came home exhausted. We were a couple of hellions back then, and it was so much fun!"
"I...I can imagine..."
Dante snapped out of his reverie to see Tod looking up at him with eyes filled with tears.
"Were there a lot of kids Dante?"
"It sounds like...fun..."
"Well, maybe we could convince your parents to let you go this year. I mean, it doesn't get dark for hours and hours, I'm sure we could whip up a costume for you little guy."
Tod perked up, his tail giving a feeble wag, but just as soon as he did Tod was forced to spin around and vomited bile into the toilet. He gave a pathetic groan.
"That tasted horrible..."
"It smells horrible too, and if you're still puking kiddo I think you're mom is gonna cock block our plans. But hey, there are plenty of things to do aside from wandering through thigh-deep snow in the search of free candy! We can think of something."
Dante gave the toilet another flush and Tod's ears perked up.
"Really? What else is there to do on Halloween?"
"The tricks, of course!"
"But I thought you said you had to be out getting candy to..."
"Hey now, cut me some slack Tod. You're talking to a master of mischief here."
"I can personally attest to that."
Tod looked around Dante's leg and saw Arthur leaning with his shoulder against the door frame, dressed in large, fluffy robe. He pushed his glasses up his nose and gave Dante a knowing smirk. Dante laughed uncomfortably in way that quickly died off.
"Oh, don't think I forgot your little shenanigans. I had to replace three windows as well as repaint my garage door when you were running amok. So, tell me, what kinds of property damage are you suggesting Tod partake in during this Halloween?"
"W-What? No! No, I wouldn't ever...I mean, well, I was just suggesting..."
Arthur started laughing and clapped Dante on the shoulder.
"I'm kidding! Geez, for a joker you sure can't take a joke. Anyway, Tod, when you are done in here, have Eric bring you down to my workshop. I'd like to talk to you in private."
Tod's ears drooped. He didn't like being talked to in private. Flashes of private conversations with his real father blurred through his mind. A stinging slap, an angry voice, tears, blood, screaming, disappointment, bitter words, the stench of alcohol and cigarette smoke. Tod could only nod numbly to which Arthur nodded and walked off. Dante turned back to Tod, ears drooped.
"Hey...You don't think he knows about last night? During them movie?"
Cold fear washed over Tod. He hadn't thought about the possibility that his new father might have overheard their playing during the movie. Maybe he just saw them and figured it out?
"Well, I guess you'll find out when you talk to dad, eh? Don't worry about it, he didn't sound...you know...mad..."
Dante patted Tod's shoulder gently and walked out of the bathroom. Tod stood shakily, worry crushing his shoulders into a slump. He began brushing his teeth mechanically as his mind conjured terrible thoughts to dwell on. Maybe Arthur just wanted to show Tod his workshop. That wouldn't be so bad. But what if he saw something? What if maybe he's mad at Tod for playing with Shade? Maybe he wanted to kick him out of the family! As Tod fretted and worried, Eric stepped into the bathroom. He walked past Tod and promptly began peeing into the toilet.
Tod gave him a sidelong glance, his ears heating as he watched Eric pee. He'd never watched someone pee before, aside from himself of course, and he couldn't help but find the sight fascinating. Eric gave a relaxed sigh and a couple shakes, flushed and turned to Tod. Tod busied himself with spitting into the sink and rinsing his toothbrush.
"So big guy. Dante says that Dad wants to see you in his little workshop of horrors."
"Workshop of h-horrors?"
"Heh, yeah. You'll see what I mean when you get down there and he talks to you."
Eric took Tod's little paw in his own and led him out of the bathroom and down the hall. As they made their way down the hall, Tod gave Eric's paw a gentle tug. He glanced down at the little pup and noticed his worried expression.
"Everything okay little guy?"
"Am I in trouble?"
"Not that I know of little guy...why? Did dad seem mad when he asked you down to his workshop?"
"Not really, but he was really serious."
"Well, no worries kiddo. Dad doesn't get angry at a lot of things, and there isn't anything that he can be mad about. Believe me, he lets you know right away if you did something wrong."
Tod nodded absently, still dwelling on possibilities. They came to their room, which was surprisingly empty. Eric suggested the idea of breakfast, and Tod could only nod. He pulled on pants and a shirt while stifling the occasional cough, his stomach only worrying him slightly. When he pulled socks over his paws Eric picked him up from behind and nuzzled Tod's neck. The puppy gave a lop-sided grin and hugged Eric's head, much to the large fox's amusement. He walked Tod out of the hall, and Tod looked into the guest room as they passed. His stomach knotted at the sight of the room as he recalled how so short a time ago he was barely scraping by to stay alive, wishing life were better, dodging the police and gangs, hoping that life would turn better or he could at least die somewhere quietly. And then he awoke and found himself in that very bed. Would he lose it all so quickly?
They passed the room and were down the stairs. Eric lead Tod down another hall and set him on the floor beside the basement door.
"Hey kiddo, when you and dad are done chatting, come up and we'll see if I can make you something for your little tummy okay?"
The sounds and smells of breakfast shared by six people made the pup's stomach rumble despite its earlier discontentment. Eric laughed and scratched Tod's ear.
"Sounds like someone agrees with me. Now go on. I won't let the others eat all the food."
Tod nodded and Eric walked off, presumably to corral the others into some semblance of order. Tod turned and looked at the door, feeling as if he were walking down into a dungeon. He took a deep breath to calm his nerves and immediately regretted it as he began coughing. He grabbed the handle and opened the door to be greeted by a yawning dark chasm, a faint glow registering at the bottom. Tod stepped down the stairs, his paws making no noise as he slipped down into the semi-darkness.
As Tod reached bottom, he paused and glanced around the corner. Seated at his workbench was Arthur, the gas mask Tod recalled from his last visit to the basement still on the bench in front of him. A small radio in the corner was playing classic rock music, the sound of guitar and drums filling the silence of the basement. Arthur was busy gluing a few pieces of rubber to the edge of the mask and so he hadn't seen the little pup peeking meekly around the corner. Tod watched in silence for a while, the stench of hot glue stinging his sensitive nose. Tod cleared his throat gently, getting his father's attention. Without glancing up, Arthur gestured to a stool on the other side of the bench.
"Pull up a seat Tod, we need to talk."
Tod walked over and grabbed the stool and pulled it up beside his father. He awkwardly struggled up its side and had a seat. Arthur sat up and adjusted his glasses and sighed before turning to face Tod.
"Tod, now, I know your new in the family, but I think I need to make something clear to you..."
Tod shrunk down into his stool as much as he was physically able.
"...Halloween is my absolute favorite season, and no son of mine is going to miss out on the joy it brings."
Tod stared at his father blankly as Arthur hefted the mask he was working on. He turned it around, then showed it to the pup.
"You aren't going to go trick-or-treating little guy, I'm sad to say. You have the flu, and nothing we do will change that. But that's no reason to keep from join in the festivities! There are pumpkins to carve! Costumes to make! Apples to caramelize!"
"Well, we don't really have pumpkins, but I think we still have some squash that we could carve tucked away in the garage. I was originally planning on making some kind of soup with that and a few other things, but I think Halloween carving is a little more important. Don't you think?"
"I...I guess so."
"Great! Now, we just need to get you a costume whipped up! I pulled out a couple a couple things off the shelves for you to look at, you know, to get an idea going in your head. Who knows, maybe you might spook off any hoodlums in our neighborhood."
Arthur pulled out a box from under his bench, the word Spooks scrawled untidily across its side, and plopped it on the ground in front of Tod's dangling paws. The open top of the box revealed several costumes, ranging from a clown suit to demons wings set with wire. Tod hopped down from his stool and investigated the box with youthful enthusiasm, his paws plunging in and turning over costume and mask alike. While sifting through, dust began to stir and cause the young pup to start coughing painfully. Arthur leaned down and began rubbing Tod's back gently to soothe the coughing collie.
Tod wiped his streaming eyes and leaned away from the box, one paw gripping the edge of a black cloak. Arthur smiled and took the cloak from Tod and held it up for him to see.
"The Grim Reaper? Heh, not a bad choice kiddo! Now, we just need to find you a scythe...I know we have it somewhere..."
Arthur looked as if he were about to set off into the murky gloom of the basement when Amy's voice called down the stairs.
"Daddy? Daddy! Tod needs to come up for breakfast. And mom also says you shouldn't have Tod down there because he's sick."
Arthur gave a grunt and shouted back.
"Maybe we'd have been upstairs to begin with if you would let me in the kitchen!"
"No! Gods forbid daddy! And besides, mom says you'll burn down the house."
"I paid for the damned thing, I should be allowed to burn it down in the pursuit of culinary perfection!"
"Mom says no and said something about you eating breakfast outside. Now send up Tod."
Tod walked up to Arthur and hugged his leg.
"Thanks daddy. For the costume and everything."
Arthur bent and picked up the little canine and hugged him for a while before kissing his cheek and setting back on the ground. He patted Tod's rump, pushing him towards the stairs.
"You're welcome Tod. Now get on upstairs before your mother comes down and guts me. I'll be up in a bit after I find the scythe for your costume."
Tod nodded eagerly and trotted up the stairs. When he'd reached the top stair he ran into Dante, leaning against the door frame and looking worried. Tod knew why the small wolf was frowning so he gave him a reassuring hug.
"He didn't ask about it."
"What did he want to talk about then?"
"Yeah kiddo, what's up?"
"What's a Grim Reaper?"
"What's a...wait, is that your costume? HA! That's great, little Tod, harvester of souls and icon to angst-ridden youth everywhere."
"I don't get it..."
"Tod, the Grim Reaper is death! You know, big spooky cloak and hood, carrying a big scythe?"
Tod stared at Dante with a mixture of skepticism and confusion. Dante rolled his eyes and took Tod's paw and led him back to the room.
"Here, get me your drawing pad and a pencil, okay?"
Tod did as he was told, fetching his sketch pad and a pencil and handing it to Dante. The wolf sat on the edge of Eric's bad and started to draw, his tongue stuck out of the corner of his mouth in a fit of powerful concentration. After a few minutes of what seemed to be very careful drawings, he flipped the pad around to show Tod something that looked reminiscent of a ghost with a pointy stick. Where the face would be was a circle, eyes that were composed of two x's, and several squares for teeth. Tod looked at Dante and had to stifle a smile.
"The Grim Reaper looks funny."
"Damn it, I never was good at drawing. Doesn't your dad have a computer or something I can pull a picture up from?"
Tod gave a helpless shrug, trying to contain a build up of giggles. Thankfully, Amy called up to Tod.
"Tod, come get your breakfast. Dante, bring him down would you?"
Tod held out his arms so he could be picked up to which Dante obliged with one arm, holding Tod's sketch pad in the other. They made there way downstairs, the aroma of eggs and toast filling the air. The pup's stomach gave an ominous growl, as if reminding him of his sickness, but his mouth was watering. He realized that he was starving and deep in the back of his throbbing head Tod hoped he could hold down breakfast. They walked into the kitchen to the sight of Sheila and Amy seated at the table while Eric and Shade wrestled on the floor.
The commotion stopped when Dante and Tod entered the room, Shade pinned to the ground with Eric's knee across his face. He still wriggled feebly but made no headway. Tod held up Dante's picture of the Grim Reaper.
"Dante drew me a picture of my costume this year!"
There was a moment of silence broken by Dante's groan at everyone staring at his ghost before everyone started laughing. Except for Shade, that is, who was making worried and uncomfortable noises underneath Eric's knee.
"Oh, at least let him up so he can breathe, Eric!"
Amy threw a spoon at Eric's back. Eric yelped, wincing and rubbing his back as he begrudgingly stood up. Shade sat up and threw both arms into the air in a melodramatic display of joy.
"Fuh-REEDOM! Thank you my dearest mistress for the rescue!"
A second thrown spoon was Amy's reply.
Just then, Liliana walked around the counter, holding a large platter topped with scrambled eggs. She set it down, gesturing for the kids to sit. Dante set Tod down, letting the pup choose his own seat. He sat to Amy's right and was rewarded with an ear scratch that made his leg kick, while Eric sat on the other side of Tod. From across the table sat Sheila and Mark. Liliana smiled at them all as she set the platter in the middle of the table.
"I hope you guys don't mind simple. I wanted to make something Tod could enjoy too without upsetting his tummy."
"Thank you mommy!"
Tod blushed happily, still savoring the joy of being able to call Liliana "mommy", but soon his focus was drawn to the eggs on the table. The others began doling out helpings of their own and the conversation lulled as everyone began eating in earnest. Tod ate slowly, trying to avoid upsetting his stomach again, though it was with limited success. Liliana swept back into the dining area, this time with a plate cover with a small mountain of toast. Shade clapped his paws heartily.
"Bravo mademoiselle, bravo! To feed us petty soldiers of fortune with such grand cuisine is testament to your saintly nature."
"Shade, shut up and eat some toast."
Dante tweaked the rabbits ear playfully, making his earrings jingle. When Shade turned to Dante, finger upraised and mouth open to offer a rebuttal, Dante pushed a slice of toast into his mouth. They all laughed at Shade's offended expression before they all began concentrating on their own plates of food. Arthur joined shortly there after, appearing with a plate of food for himself, but he remained by the kitchen door, apparently content to monitor the situation.
Dante and Shade appeared to be in some form of eating-race, each trying to out-eat the other. Mark and Sheila were discussing the classes that they'd missed, with Amy chiming in her opinions on particular teachers. Even Liliana was taking time to offer the occasional comment as the discussion progressed. Eric, however, appeared to be deep in thought, picking through his food slowly in silence.
Tod watched Eric nibble, and saw that Eric occasionally glanced at Tod before looking away. Tod's brow furrowed with worry as he watched his brother.
Did I do something wrong? He looks so serious. Is he mad about last night? But...he didn't seem to mind me and Shade playing, at least it didn't look like it bothered him.
Tod's mind wound its way through some worrisome thoughts as he ate some scrambled eggs and watched his brother's peculiar behavior. After a time, Eric met Tod's eyes and gave an almost imperceptible nod towards the stairs. It clicked in Tod's head that Eric wanted to talk to him, so the puppy gently excused himself, saying his tummy hurt. Eric volunteered to take Tod and put him into bed even as Liliana stood to help him, and before anyone could say otherwise Tod was scooped up in Eric's arms and whisked away upstairs.
When they were upstairs and in the confines of their room, Eric clicked the door shut and set his little brother on his bed. Tod sat their quietly, watching Eric as the fox pulled up a chair.
"Are you okay Tod?"
The question wasn't what Tod was expecting at all.
"What do you mean?"
"Well, I know what you and Shade did last night and...well, remember when Mark tried that with you? You ended up passing out. I just wanted to make sure you were doing alright."
Tod let out a sigh of relief and started to giggle. Eric's confused expression only made the pup giggle harder.
"What? What did I say?"
Tod finally stifled his sniggering and waved off Eric's concern.
"I thought you were mad at me! You wouldn't look at me and you looked so...serious. I thought maybe you were mad that I played with Shade!"
"Oh! Oh, no, no I was just worried because I noticed when you were walking downstairs you were walking a little funny, like your bottom was hurting."
"Well...it did, but just a little."
Eric stared blankly at Tod.
"...Okay, it hurt a lot. But Shade felt better!"
Eric shook his head and grinned, unable to argue the point. Instead, he stood up and walked over to his dresser and opened the top drawer. After a moment of shuffling around, he pulled out something roughly paw-sized in length and about as thick as two fingers. It was black in color, and had a knob on one end. He sat beside Tod and wiggled it in front of Tod's nose.
"This is one of your sister and I's toys, one of our first vibrators. I think maybe, if you're going to go around taking care of other boys like you have been, you might want to start practicing with this."
He twisted a little knob on the bottom and it began to vibrate gently.
"And don't worry, it's clean. Now, I'm going to head downstairs and let everyone know you're feeling a little under the weather, but I think you should get...acquainted with it. It will make it easier for you in the future and, uh, it actually feels really good."
Eric clicked the toy off and set it beside Tod. He gave the pup a wink and stood.
"There is lube under the pillow...Don't overdo it now, okay Tod?"
With that, Eric stepped out of the bedroom, pulling it shut behind him and leaving Tod to sit with his thoughts dancing, teasing him. Should he? His bottom doesn't hurt anymore, but what if he practiced with the toy? Would he hurt again? His mind drifted to Eric's member when he was aroused. Tod felt a grin creeping across his muzzle. Dante's dripping member pressed seductively against his little hole, filling him up, stretching him...the sensation of Mark holding his hips and pushing in deep as the cat growled lustily...
Tod's breathing started to get quicker as his paw drifted below his waist, gently stroking his sheath and testicles. He closed his eyes and bit his lip as he explored himself, imagining their paws and tongues exploring him. Maybe...maybe just a little bit. After all, the toy was meant to help, right?
Tod reached under the pillow, pausing in his thoughts as he extracted the lube, questioning why the lube should be in such an easy-to-find location, but he disregarded that line of thinking when as he rolled a thumb over his tip as it protruded from his sheath.
He reached over and pulled the toy closer to him and looked it over. It looked to be made of some sort of plastic and was somewhat for its size. Tod assumed it was batteries that added the extra weight, and gave the knob at the bottom a gentle turn. There was a subtle 'click' and it started vibrating in his paw. It was not loud, but the vibrations tickled his paw and made him giggle. He felt naughty doing this, but at the same time it felt good. He took the lubricant and the vibrating toy to his own bed and pulled the covers up. He didn't want his mom or dad to walk in uninvited to see him like this.
When he was snuggled comfortably under the covers, Tod kicked off his pants and threw off his shirt before he spread his legs. He shivered as he glanced under the covers, considering how sexual this made him feel, it seemed so...adult. The thought furthered his arousal, and the puppy eagerly grabbed the lubricant and rubbed a decent amount on the tip before smoothing it downward over most of it. He lifted the sheets and moved the vibrating toy down between his legs, allowing it to rub gently against his fully exposed flesh, the touch eliciting a gentle gasp from him as enjoyed the new sensations.
When he was far enough down, he lifted his hips slightly and spread his legs more, giving himself better access to his own bottom. He put the toy against his entrance, pausing as he braced himself for it. With a gentle push, the toy entered him. He let out a breath of relief when he realized it didn't hurt, and gingerly he began pushing it in further. After an inch or two he stopped when the vibrations hit something inside him that made his back arch and his eyes widen with shock. It felt so good the puppy couldn't bring himself to move the device further.
With his legs up and one paw on the toy, Tod began stroking his cock, gently at first as tiny droplets of precum began forming at his tip. He kept stroking and soon he began rocking the vibrator in and out of his tailhole, his pleasure overcoming caution as he worked another inch into himself. He closed his eyes tight, imagining Eric holding his hips and pounding his little hole. With each of his thrusts Tod imagined Eric pushing into him, every withdrawal matched by Eric in his fantasy. It wasn't long before Tod's moans started changing pitch, his little toes curling as he eased himself closer and closer to his peak.
In his fanciful dreams, he imagined Eric whispering how much he loved Tod and telling him what a good puppy he was, and, within his fancy, Eric pushed in as deep as he was able, forcing his thick knot into Tod as in reality Tod pushed another inch into himself and, with a loud gasp of surprise, the puppy promptly climaxed hard all over his stomach, both of his paws pumping hard as he milked drop after drop out of himself. With a small whimper of pleasure and release, Tod slumped back into his bed, his breath coming deep and ragged. His bottom ached once more, but that very ache was what pushed Tod over the edge and he cherished the sensation.
Tod rolled over onto his side and looked around for something to clean up with and spied a discarded towel in the corner. He stealthily slid out of bed and picked up the towel. It had the thick scent of old fluids and Tod knew the reason the towel was there and not in the bathroom was for cleaning up fluids besides water. He wiped away his mess, pausing to taste his own semen and was surprised that it did have a sweet flavor, like cookies. He shook his head. Strange. He stretched and yawned, enjoying his nudity in private, but he turned when he heard the door click. Peaking her head in was Amy, worry on her face.
"Tod, is everything alright? I heard you whimpering..."
"Yeah, I was just exploring..."
Amy blinked, then noticed the towel at Tod's feet. She grinned, her eyes twinkling.
"You'll have to show me sometime what you discovered."
Tod couldn't help but grin. What he learned wasn't really for girls...but that didn't mean he couldn't show her a little of what he discovered...