A/N: So...the setting is more like the musical. Sorry if anyone takes offence to me having this in the book section...Anyway, a short piece between Oliver and Dodger. Enjoy.

A milky white moon hung in the endless black sky, the only light penetrating the inky blackness. Few people still meandered about the town. Those who did lived at night, creeping out from the shadows and gutters to breath the cool air. Night was a becalmed, serene time. Even from the old, splintered balcony overlooking the slums of London. Oliver sighed, propping his elbows up on the blacked wood and cupping his chin in his hands. His sandy hair was gently brushed back by the breeze, a kind gesture of affection. A soft smile crept across the boy's face; so rarely did he receive any notion of love, he had to make believe. The breeze was his father, playfully tousling his hair. Warm spring days were his mother, offering joy and comfort. Oliver had no one.

A single silvery trail streaked down Oliver's face, which he quickly wiped away. He could not let the other boys see. Even they, his new family, did not offer love. At best, they were a tightly knit group of equally adverse children who stole during the day and saw each other only into the late hours of night. Stifling a cough, Oliver gazed up at the moon, smiling sadly. Absentmindedly he began to hum quietly, no song in particular, just a simple melody to console him in his loneliness.

Oliver was not so hopelessly alone as he perceived this night. A form bathed in shadow watched him closely from the hovel's doorway. Silently, Dodger pushed away from his leaning position on the wooden frame and strode toward the melancholy Oliver. Slightly surprised by Dodger's sudden apparition, Oliver jolted, but soon reverted to staring out into the night. Dodger stood beside him, resting nonchalantly on the ancient ledge.

"What's got ya down, mate?" Dodger was never one to respect silent reverie. Despite the broken stillness, Oliver was glad to have a bit of company. Without turning to Dodger, he gave a quiet response.


"Is that all? Come now, you c'n tell me. I won't tell th' other boys."

Eyes flitting to the side, Oliver surmised that for once, Dodger was sincere and not simply trying to delve into his personal life. He had better savor the moment; it would most probably be the last of its kind.

"I…I guess…Well, I've never had a home, or a family. And I'm awful glad you brought me to live with the boys, Dodger. It's just…it's not home."

"How d'ya know wot home is if you've never 'ad one?"

"I don't. Home is just somewhere where you fit in, where everyone loves you no matter who you are…" Oliver's voice drifted off into silence. Quelling the burning tears in his eyes, he turned he head away from Dodger. A frown creased Dodger's face; young Oliver had never quite fit in. How could he? The boy was immaculate beneath the dirt, spoke like an angel, too innocent to know the ways of the streets. And Dodger…pieces of his clashing suit had been stolen, rough ebony hair covered his head, and his gritty voice was always pouring forth less than pleasant words. No, Oliver would never quite fit in. With a sigh, Dodger wrapped an arm around Oliver's shoulder, pulling the other boy closer. Startled at first, Oliver resisted, but soon succumbed to Dodger's friendly action. Tears suddenly spilled forth from Oliver's eyes, and he buried his head in Dodger's chest. Dodger was completely taken aback; he had never been seduced to such emotion. Ah, what the 'ell…Unsure at first, he wrapped his other arm around Oliver and drew him in closer, disregarding the boy ruining the front of his jacket. The two boys stood in silence for a good while, Oliver's heavy sobs the only sound. Dodger nuzzled his face into Oliver's wild blonde locks, marveling how silky the boy's hair was. He felt Oliver's arms wrap around his torso, felt the boy's warmth course through him. For a moment, they were rapt with each other's company. For a moment, Oliver belonged.