Hey everyone! I'm glad you guys have been remembering my story. XD It's quite a strange feeling when you see that people are still visiting your stuff even when you haven't updated for a while. In any case, this update's been long overdue, and I'm sorry I took so long. Of course, I think it's fair that I focused on my studies, but I digress. On with the fic!

Rev yawned as quietly as he could, stretching out on his bed. Rip had caught a nasty case of laryngitis, and was trying his best to rest. Of course, he had to make routine checks to make sure his brother remained in bed, but that wasn't always so bad. The roadrunner quietly tiptoed out of his bedroom after making his bed, making sure the door shut behind him without a sound. It was late – around 2:30 AM, if his clock was right – and he had started to feel a little hungry. Usually, he would've waited until the morning, but he figured a midnight – or was it midmorning? – snack couldn't hurt. Hoping not to awaken anyone else, he continued tiptoeing into the kitchen, where he flicked on the lights and began rummaging through the refrigerator. Of course, in his desperate search for food, the noise factor was forgotten, and he unintentionally made quite a stir searching for something to eat. Fortunately, no one woke up and started yelling at the eager superhero, despite all the shuffling of fridge contents he had to do. After all, how else would he have been able to reach the pickles? After he closed the fridge door, Rev carefully felt his way over to the cutlery drawer, plucking a long fork from its depths. His attention was then returned to the pickle jar, which he then attempted to open. However, the attempts were for naught; the lid was stuck.

Fortunately, he knew just the person to see about the slight snag; Tech was more than likely awake, especially after Rip's run-in with their strange new foe. If anyone could open the pickle jar, it was his coyote friend. Of course, using his abilities was technically cheating, but when one wanted pickles, one wanted them immediately. So, after carefully tucking the pickle jar under his arm, Rev dashed off to Tech's lab, arriving there in an instant. Straightening out his pyjamas, he was about to enter Tech's lab before he realized he'd lost his nightcap on the way over. Sighing, the avian put down the pickle jar and rushed back along his path, easily retrieving his hat. With that done, he sped back to the lab and put his hat on, entering the room with the pickle jar tucked beneath his arm. Just as he'd been expecting, his friend was at his lab, studying broken chunks of the doll.

"Hey-Tech-how's-your-research-coming-along-I-mean-you've-gotta-be-getting-closer-to-an-answer-since-it's-been-a-few-days-and-you're-pretty-smart-after-all-and-hey-while-I'm-here-would-you-mind-helping-me-open-this-jar-because-man-oh-man-is-the-lid-stuck!" Rev said in one breath, smiling at his seated companion. Tech had jumped in surprise when the bird had started talking, but eventually seemed to resign himself to the fact that he had company. With a sigh, the coyote's hand began to glow light green, and the lid twisted off easily, finding a new spot on the lab bench.

"Thank-you-very-much, Tech." Rev smiled, jabbing the fork into the pickle jar and removing the first gherkin he'd stabbed. The coyote smiled back softly, although he returned his eyes back to the abandoned microscope.

"I haven't really found out much yet, Rev," Tech explained, turning a few knobs on the microscope to focus it, "The dummy seems to be a normal, everyday dummy. Nothing special about it. But, I was able to find a very interesting viscous liquid on the mannequin where Rip said the purple energy shot out from."

"Oh-you-mean-like-ectoplasm? Are-we-dealing-with-a-ghost-or-something-Tech-because-I-ain't-afraid-of-no-ghosts. Oh! Or-maybe-it's-some-weird-kind-of-alien-life-form, like-some-spectral-energy-being-or-something! Oh-man, that'd-be-sweet!" Rev theorized, making strange hand gestures as he spoke to convey his message. Of course, since Tech hadn't been looking, they were superfluous, but the roadrunner found them entertaining.

"Well, let's hope it's nothing too crazy like that," Tech chuckled, a small smile forming on his face, "In any case, I've just been trying to track down who could be producing these dolls. Maybe they're the product of a scientific experiment, and are being brought to life by some mad doctor? Of course, they could just be regular mannequins, which would mean there's only one of those purple energy beings around. Which means, I'll have to resort to this little baby." The coyote grinned and opened up the bench's drawer, pulling out a gelatinous cube and a set of blueprints.

"Ooh-what-is-it-Tech? It-looks-kinda-gooey. Are-you-sure-it'll-work? What-does-it-do? It-looks-kinda-like-a-" Rev began, although he was quickly silenced by Tech's firm grip on his beak.

"It's an Ectoplasm Sensitive Electromagnetic Snare," Tech explained, grinning proudly at his eager friend, "It's a spring-loaded trap which should be able to catch just about anything. All we need to do is find a way to lure the mote into a location where we can catch it. Of course, that's if I'm not right about it just being some mad scientist's pet project." Rev nodded, highly tempted to touch the gooey device. However, he knew Tech wouldn't appreciate it if he accidentally activated it. Plus, given the fact that it was an electromagnetic snare, he was certain it would depower most of the coyote's lab. It would definitely be more than a minor hindrance. These thoughts were interrupted when the coyote yawned loudly, stretching and popping his vertebrae. He had obviously been in the lab for a long time; it was probable that he hadn't left it other than to grab a snack or relieve himself.

"Alright-Tech, I-think-it's-time-you-got-some-rest. I'm-sure-you'll-probably-be-able-to-think-better-once-you've-rested-and-that-reminds-me; you-should-probably have-something-to-eat-because-I-know-you-haven't-eaten-in-hours." Rev rambled, jabbing the fork into the jar and retrieving another pickle. He held the former cucumber in front of the coyote's face, tempted to push it against the canid's nose.

"I'm not eating that." Tech said curtly, crossing his arms, "And I'm not going to sleep any time soon either. After all, I think I'm getting close to a breakthrough and I'd like to-" His sentence remained unfinished, as Rev didn't feel like listening to Tech's argument and had instead stuffed the pickle into his friend's mouth. The coyote glared at his friend, and was about to spit it out before he noticed the look in the bird's eye. Rev's concerned expression made him resign himself to his fate, although he chewed the pickle slowly as a weak protest. Once the food had been masticated and ingested, the roadrunner pulled his friend out of the chair and dragged him out of the lab. Of course, he ended up going back for the pickle jar; he knew that Tech hated it when he left food in the lab. After a brief visit to the kitchen, the roadrunner led the coyote back to his bedroom, gently moving blueprints and unfinished gadgets aside with his foot.

Tech slowly plodded back to his bed, sitting down on it and looking curiously at Rev. The roadrunner wasn't sure why at first, although he understood that Tech needed to change into his pyjamas after a few seconds. Smiling, he simply turned his back and covered his eyes, unable to feel the burning glare the coyote was shooting at him.

"Okay, now you're just being ridiculous, Rev," Tech grumbled, folding his arms over his chest, "I'm not getting changed while you're in here."

"C'mon-Tech-I'm-not-looking-and-I-promise-I-won't-peek-since-you're-obviously-so-self-conscious," Rev laughed playfully, unable to notice his friend's uncomfortable fidgeting.

"I'm not self-conscious," Tech said defensively, faltering briefly as he spoke, "I just don't really feel comfortable getting semi-nude with a friend in the room."

"You-had-to-get-semi-nude-in-gym-class-with-a-whole-bunch-of-guys-you-didn't-like, so-suck-it-up, Barbie," Rev grinned, the playful tone of voice ever present. Tech sighed again, unable to find a good counterpoint to make. Without another argument, the coyote stood up and shuffled over to his closet, pulling his pyjamas from its dark recesses. He felt a little nervous about undressing in front of Rev, but with his friend's promise not to peek, he quickly peeled off his uniform, now stripped down to a simple pair of briefs. As quickly as he could, the coyote put his supersuit into the closet, and began pulling his pyjamas on with incredible haste. Rev could have done so much quicker, but he neither wanted nor needed the roadrunner's help to get dressed. Clearing his throat as a sign that he was finished, he soon found himself looking into his friend's kind, green eyes.

"Alright, now get into bed." Rev said softly, speaking at a normal speed to make sure he couldn't be misconstrued. Tech nodded obediently, although he simply flopped on top of his bed. The roadrunner put his hands on his hips, glaring at the coyote. He knew that Tech wouldn't go to sleep if he left him like that; it wouldn't be hard to slip back into his uniform and slink back into the lab. His friend simply shrugged his shoulders, giving his friend a smug grin. It encapsulated the phrase "what're you gonna do about it?" So, Rev decided that he was going to have to get physical if he wanted to make sure that his friend got some much needed sleep. With feverish speed, he wrestled the coyote into his bed, and tucked in the sheets as tightly as he could. Tech's cry of surprise was enough to make the Rev laugh heartily, although he had to stop after seeing his friend's glare. While that made it harder for him to keep from laughing again, he managed to cut it down to a few quiet snickers.

"I-guess-all-that's-left-to-do-now-is-to-make-sure-you-stay-in-bed-and-finally-get-some-sleep." Rev grinned, ruffling his friend's fur, "I'll-be-right-back-with-a-chair." True to his word, Rev was in and out in a matter of seconds, now seated at Tech's beside.

"You know Rev, this is completely unnecessary. I don't need to you to do all this; I can rest once we've caught this guy and-" Tech began, although Rev clamped his friend's muzzle shut.

"Obviously, I have to." Rev said, once again assuming a normal vocal speed, "After all, you could use the rest. Plus, you could use a little refresher. Once you've slept some more, I'm sure you'll be able to think up a brilliant way to catch this guy. Besides, sleeping in the lab all the time can't be good for your back. Now go to sleep." He grinned at his friend, folding his arms over his chest and crossing his legs. Tech sighed again, knowing that his friend wouldn't let up until he'd finally gone to sleep. The coyote rolled over onto his side, giving the roadrunner a sheepish look from his trapped state under the covers.

"Um... Rev... Would you mind... well... would you mind plugging in that miniature lamp over there?" Tech asked, trying his hardest not to make eye contact. Rev looked a little confused for a moment, although he quickly found what his friend was talking about. The coyote had been referring to a sparse looking nightlight; a simple, ovate bulb lying on the floor in a forlorn way. As tempting as it was to chuckle about the little security item, he did as Tech requested, plugging in the bulb and seating himself by his friend's bed again.

"...Thanks, Rev." Tech smiled appreciatively, obviously relieved that his friend hadn't laughed at him.

"No problem, Tech." Rev replied, smiling back at his cozy pal, "And I know what you're thinking; don't worry about it. I promise I won't tell Duck. I'd pinkie swear you, but then I'd risk you escaping into the lab." Tech just chuckled quietly, turning onto his left side and looking over at the wall.

"G'night, Rev." Tech mumbled, yawning again and curling up under the sheets.

"Good night, Tech." Rev replied, yawning a few minutes after his friend. It only took a few minutes before Tech's breathing became slower, and after about ten minutes, the coyote was fast asleep. Rev stood up from his chair, taking a peek over at his friend's face. He found himself stifling another laugh, as he'd found that Tech was sucking his thumb. After successfully stifling his urge to laugh, he found himself looking rather longingly at his friend. Secretly, he'd been hoping that they'd stay up for a few hours talking about scientific things, or his latest experiments. However, he was just glad that Tech had fallen asleep; it was obvious that he was exhausted.

Now that he was sure Tech was asleep, he quickly looked around his friend's room for security cameras. He knew for a fact that Tech would be upset if he knew that he'd peeked. It was just too tempting for the poor bird; plus, Tech's tail was just so... bushy. It was hard to explain why he'd felt so compelled to look. In all honesty, even he wasn't sure why he'd done it. The feelings were strange to him, but he knew he'd had them for at least a few months. What would Tech say if he told him? What would his parents say if they knew he'd developed feelings for another man, and a coyote, no less? He was more worried about the latter situation than the former, but it was a private dilemma. When the time came, he'd address it. In the meantime, he found himself looking lovingly at the sleeping face of the object of his affection. With one last furtive glance around the room, he leaned over and kissed Tech on the cheek, before pulling back and leaving the room. In his rush to leave, he'd completely forgotten about the chair, but at that point, he didn't care. After all, he'd stolen a kiss from his favourite coyote.

I hope this was worth the wait, guys. D: If the workload this semester is light, I'll be able to finish it in a few weeks. If it's not, though, I'll probably end up finishing it sometime in April. Hopefully, it won't come to that, but I'd like to at least warn you in case I leave you hanging again. Anyway, have a Happy New Year, everyone, and I hope you all had a happy non-denominational holiday! :3