Notes: This was my contribution to the Fandom4Oaklahoma fundraiser. This is the first Edward/Emmett story I've ever written, and I was quite pleased with the way it turned out.

For all of you LTOYL readers who are wondering what's going on, Kherisma is dealing with a major family issue at the moment. She has made the decision to step away from the fandom while she deals with it. We discussed it, and I am going to finish the story on my own. Ch. 42 is with the betas, and I will post it as soon as it's back from them, and will aim for a regular, quick posting schedule for the remaining chapters.


Doc McCarty and the Big, Purple Cat Toy

Edward idly scratched the soft fur under his cat's chin and felt the answering purr. He adjusted the book on his thigh for the umpteenth time, frustrated by how difficult it was to read one-handed. The cat was impossible to ignore, she'd just end up on top of the book, and he'd get no reading done. With a sigh, he blew his hair out of his eyes, took note of the page number, and tossed the book onto the nightstand beside him.

It was a good book, but he was restless anyway. He turned off the light beside him and slipped under the covers, checking twice to make sure the alarm was set. Bella, the small grey and white striped cat he'd adopted a few months prior, settled on the bed beside him, nudging him with her nose. He idly ran his hand along her back, and she pressed closer to him. "Oh, Bella," he said with a sigh. "No offense, but you're really not who I want in my bed right now."

She purred harder, and he rolled onto his side, careful not to jostle her. More than restless, he was lonely. He'd moved to this area to get a job as a computer programmer, and while a mid-size city in the Midwest wasn't a bad place to live, it made it very hard to find a partner if you were a shy, gay man. He didn't regret moving here. He had a nice—if small—house that he was fixing up, a decent job, and a couple of good friends. But at the end of the day, he came home to an empty home, with nothing but an attention-whore cat to cuddle with. Getting her had helped, there was a living being to greet him at the door when he came home and curl up beside him in bed while he slept, but it wasn't the same as having a man to do that with.

Just the thought of a man in his bed made his cock twitch and he palmed it, rubbing through the boxers he was wearing.

"You're fucking pathetic, Edward," he muttered to myself.

Not only was he lonely, he was horny. Really fucking horny. Just thinking about the idea of sex had him hard. He shimmied the boxers over his hips, and with an indignant meow at being disturbed, Bella jumped off the bed.

Naked now, he groaned as he wrapped his hand around his cock and gave it a few tugs. The man sighed, it felt good, but it didn't seem like jerking off was going to be even remotely satisfying tonight. He needed more.

He fumbled for the lube and dildo in the drawer beside the bed and pulled them out before he reached down to grab his laptop. He just needed a little bit of inspiration. He went to the bookmark for his favorite porn site and browsed through the videos, trying to find one that would catch his attention. Eventually, he finally found one. In it, one of the guys was tall and lanky, like Edward himself. The other guy was bigger, brawnier, with wide shoulders and strong arms. Edward shivered just imaging a guy like that pinning him to the bed and fucking him. He so had a type.

Edward hated when the video was interrupted by buffering issues, so he let it load while he prepped himself. He rolled onto his back and pressed down on the pump lever of the lube bottle, filling his palm. He lifted his legs, bringing them up and wide, so his knees were pressed to his shoulders and he could reach between them, moving his slick fingers to his ass. Edward's breath hitched as his fingers slid over and around the opening, sending a tingling jolt of pleasure through his body. God, how long had it been since someone else touched him like that? He sighed when he realized it was going on two years now.

Pathetic, Edward, he thought again.

The man pressed a little harder with his middle finger, letting it slide into his body, and he released a groan. Fuck that felt good. He moved quickly from one finger to two, adding more lube when he moved up to three. His cock was hard and straining against his stomach, pre-come pooling in a small, sticky puddle on his stomach. He groaned and used his clean left hand to start the video, before slicking the dildo with lube and slowly pressing it inside of him. His belly clenched as it sank inside, the slight burn making him hiss aloud.

Needing a moment to adjust, he glanced over at the video. He watched as the two men began to kiss, licking his lips at the remembered feeling of someone else's mouth on his. Fuck, he missed that.

His right hand began to move, slowly sliding the toy in and out of him to begin and then starting to move a little faster.

He tilted his head so he could stare at the laptop on the bed beside him as he fucked himself with the dildo. He pictured himself in the slighter guy's place, imagined a cock filling him, making him come. He awkwardly rolled to the side just long enough to grab some lube to slick his palm. He settled onto his back once again and slid his hand over his cock. He threw his head back, it was awkward using his left hand to jerk off, but it still felt so good as he pressed his thumb against the sensitive spot just below the head.

Edward's balls drew up, tightening as he felt his stomach clench and the urge to come became almost overwhelming. He managed to hold out until the money shot in the video where the larger man came on his partner, painting his belly and cock with come.

He couldn't hold out any longer and felt his entire body clench, his hips lifting off the bed. He came so hard that the first shot splattered his chin, while the rest coated his chest and belly. He panted through the spasms until his cock was spent, and his head was spinning.

Sticky and sated, he let his feet fall to the mattress, his thighs quivering as he stretched out his legs. The toy slid out of his body, and with a groan, he got up, grabbed it, and staggered to the bathroom to clean up.

Edward got in the shower, figuring he could clean both himself and the toy in there. When everything was clean, he stood under the warm water, feeling a wave of melancholy wash over him. As good as masturbating had felt, it just wasn't the same as being with another person.

He braced his arms against the shower wall, feeling tired and lonely. He wanted a man inside him, not an inanimate object. He wanted him in the shower next to him, the man's strong arms wrapped around him. More than anything, he wanted to fall asleep with his head on the man's chest after and wake up with him in the morning.

The problem was, Edward didn't know who he was or where to find him. The city he lived in had a grand total of one gay club in it, and the only time he'd gone, he'd felt awkward and uncomfortable. He was too shy to hit on anyone there, so he'd sat alone, hunched at a corner table, nursing a drink. No one approached him, and he finally went home, feeling worse than when he'd arrived.

It wasn't exactly an experience Edward wanted to repeat.

Leaving the toy on the edge of the bathtub, he dried off and trudged back to bed. The porn on his computer seemed sordid, the sticky bottle of lube sleazy, and the slight ache in his body from the toy made him feel cheap.

He sighed heavily and turned on his side; falling in bed alone was depressing. Edward felt Bella jump on the bed and curl up against his thighs, her purring soothing as always, but it didn't take away the loneliness. He stroked his hand over her fur and eventually felt himself begin to drift off to sleep.

He jerked awake suddenly, looking wildly around; trying to figure out what had woken him. He'd been sprawled on his stomach, and he pushed himself up, kneeling on the bed as he listened. He glanced at the clock, seeing the 3:55 a.m. in green LEDs. The garbage truck occasionally woke him up as it went through his neighborhood, but there was no way it was running that early.

A sound came from the other room, and it took him a moment before he placed it. He jumped off the bed, fully-awake now, running toward the retching sounds. His fingers fumbled for the light switch in the bathroom.

Bella was flat on her belly, hunched down, her ears flattened against her head as she retched again. On the floor in front of her there was a small pool of vomit. "Bella, baby, what's wrong?" he said, carefully dropping to his knees and reaching out to touch her. She slunk backwards, looking miserable, and he frowned.

He had no idea what was wrong with her; she'd always been very healthy. Maybe it's just a hairball, he rationalized, but when he glanced down at the floor, there was no hair in sight. Just a disgusting, half-digested mass of cat food. He frowned down at it as a glimpse of something purple in it caught his eye.

As disgusted as he was by the vomit, he inspected it more closely, realizing that sprinkled throughout it were little bits of purple. Dawning realization made him gasp, and horrified, he sat back on his heels.

No, no, no … not that. Anything but that, he silently pleaded. He looked up at the shower, praying he'd see the purple dildo he'd used earlier still resting on the rim of the bathtub, but no, it was nowhere in sight.

With a groan, he got up, scanning the room for the toy. It wasn't there, and he flicked on the light in the hallway and headed into the bedroom. It was empty of toys, even the space underneath the bed, and he hurriedly walked to the second bedroom that he used as an office.

Lying on the floor in the middle of the room was the mangled toy. Bella had clearly dragged it there, and the silicone was covered in dust and bits of cat hair that had been on the floors, despite the fact he'd swept two days before. The entire base of the toy was missing, chewed off, and there were chunks of silicone missing from the shaft.

"No, Bella, why? Why the hell did you decide that was a chew toy?" he moaned aloud, one hand going to his hair and gripping it as he tried to figure out what the hell to do. Edward heard her retch again, and worried that the silicone was not just upsetting her stomach, but actually harming her, he ran to the bedroom.

"Fuck, gotta get you to the vet," he muttered, yanking on jeans and the first clean T-shirt he ran across. He didn't bother with underwear or socks, running down two flights of stairs as fast as possible to grab the cat carrier from the basement. Bella was still in the bathroom, hunched over miserably, but not retching anymore, and he set the carrier down. He reached out carefully, crooning to her, "It's going to be okay, sweetie. I'm going to take you to someone who will make you better."

She mewled pitifully as he picked her up, but she allowed herself to be wrapped in a towel and put in the carrier. He took a moment to wipe up the vomit, spraying the floor down with cleaner and trying not to gag. He raced up and down the stairs again, grabbing a plastic bag to shove the toy into, in case the vet needed to see it. He threw it in a brown paper bag to disguise it, because with his luck, he'd meet a hot guy while he was carrying around a half-eaten sex toy. He couldn't leave the toy at home though.

Edward knew he'd want to die of humiliation admitting to the vet clinic what she'd eaten, but it was better than Bella dying because he was too embarrassed to tell the truth.

Moving as fast as he could without jostling her, Edward carried the cat-filled crate and the toy downstairs. He shoved his feet in a pair of sneakers and ran out to his car, strapping the carrier in tightly. He went to pull out of his driveway before he realized he didn't know where to go.

Edward slammed on the brakes, put the car in park, and fumbled with his phone, searching for the nearest twenty-four hour vet. The closest place was the Miller St. Emergency Vet Clinic. He put it into his GPS and hastily backed out onto the street. Bella mewed pitifully on the drive to the vet clinic. He tried to drive as smoothly as possible, but he knew he was speeding, terrified that Bella was dying.

"It's okay, sweetheart," he babbled to the cat, "you're gonna be okay."

Forced to stop at a red light, he felt his eyes well up at the thought that his carelessness could have harmed Bella. "Fuck," he swore to himself. "Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck!"

Edward swallowed down the panic and took off the moment the light turned green. He pushed the eight-year-old Volvo as fast as it could go and screeched into the parking lot of the vet clinic, throwing it into park and yanking out the keys. His fingers were clumsy and uncoordinated as he fumbled with his seatbelt and the one around the carrier. Bella was still mewing pitifully as he carried her inside, the jingle of the door announcing their arrival.

"My cat's sick," he blurted out. "She's been throwing up, and I found some chewed up … silicone in the vomit."

The young woman at the check-in desk gave him a comforting smile. "It'll be okay. Just take a deep breath, sir. I am going to give you some paperwork to fill out about your cat's history, and then the doctor will see her, okay?"

"Okay," he said hoarsely.

Edward's hands were shaking as he took the clipboard. He placed Bella on the seat beside him and reached a finger in through the door of the small crate to touch her side. "You okay, sweetie?" he murmured.

She mewed again and he focused on the page in front of him, hastily scribbling down Bella's information; his tired, panicked brain struggling to remember exactly when he'd gotten her and which vaccinations she'd had.

"All finished?" a red-headed tech dressed in light blue scrubs asked as he looked up.

He nodded tightly, and she smiled reassuringly at him. "Follow me then. We'll get you right in."

"Thanks," he muttered, carrying Bella into the exam room. The redhead went over the payment policy, and he numbly agreed to pay the ninety-dollar exam fee before he left today, no matter what the doctor found. He mentally tried to calculate how much this might cost. He had money set aside for working on the house, but he'd dip into that if it meant saving Bella.

Edward dazedly followed instructions, taking Bella out of the carrier and placing her gently on the stainless steel table. She looked so tiny there, her ears back as she yowled loudly, expressing her unhappiness with the entire situation. The tech gently weighed the cat and checked her temperature, Bella mewing in protest the whole time. Edward had to shove his hands in his pockets to keep from reaching out to soothe her.

"Doctor McCarty will be in to take a look at her in just a moment," the woman said reassuringly as she left the exam room.

Edward picked the cat up, cradling her in his hands. "You gotta be okay, sweetie," he said thickly. "You're all I've got right now."

She squirmed, and he set her down again, pulling the chair over from the corner so he could sit while he petted her. It seemed to take forever for the doctor to arrive, and his anxiety grew. He barely looked up when the door opened, afraid he'd snap at him for taking so long. The veterinarian walked over to the table, immediately reaching out for Bella.

"You're a pretty little thing," a deep voice crooned, running one large finger under her chin. "Yes, you are."

~Doc~

Emmett McCarty yawned and stretched. It had been a long, slow night at the vet clinic. That was a good thing of course, fewer animals in dire need of his help, but he was bored and restless. He rubbed at his eyes wearily, and resumed typing case notes from his previous shift. He was nodding off at the computer by the time the tech, Victoria, peered her head in the office door.

"Hey, you've got a patient in exam room one."

"Thanks, Vic," he said, standing and stretching. He was so glad that he was nearly done with the night shifts at the clinic. Doctor James would be back from vacation, and he could go back to working a shift that didn't make him feel like a vampire.

"Nothing critical, I assume?"

"Nah," she said. "The cat ate something and is puking. Her vitals are normal though, and she doesn't seem to be in distress. Her owner though … the guy seems pretty worried. He's sweet, but panicked."

Emmett nodded, picturing an elderly, widowed gentleman bringing in the cat he'd owned for years. He straightened his scrubs and swiped his stethoscope from the desk, draping it around his neck. Emmett was usually good at calming down worried pet owners, and he figured this guy would be no exception.

The veterinarian snagged the chart from the bin beside the exam room doorway before he went inside. His breath caught in his throat at the sight in front of him. Rather than an elderly man, the man in front of him was young. Attractive, too, if slightly disheveled, his shirt was on backwards and his hair was standing up on one side. His light brown hair shone with a reddish tint and fell forward into his eyes. He sat in a chair next to the exam table, speaking softly to the small grey and white tabby. She was rubbing up against his long-fingered hand, and Emmett suddenly wondered what those fingers would feel like stroking him.

Emmett pushed down that momentary lapse in professionalism and reached for the kitten. She tilted her head back as he rubbed his finger against the white fur under her chin. "You're a pretty little thing. Yes, you are," he said softly to her.

The cat's owner lifted his head, his blue-green eyes meeting Emmett's and widening. A blush filled his cheeks, and he jerked back.

When Edward lifted his gaze, he saw a gorgeous man dressed in navy blue scrubs and a dark grey T-shirt with a stethoscope draped around his neck.

Emmett smiled reassuringly at the man. "What's her name?"

"Uh, Bella," the man stammered, licking his lips nervously.

"Well, I'm Doctor Emmett McCarty, and I promise, I'll take great care of Bella for you."

"Thanks," the younger man said gratefully. "I'm Edward."

"So, this little girl ate something that disagreed with her, huh?" Emmett asked.

Edward nodded. "Yeah, I woke up to her throwing up. I rushed her right over."

"Any idea what she ate?"

"Uhm." The man blushed and lifted the plastic bag out of the paper one, showing the vet the mangled purple silicone toy.

Emmett's eyes widened as he fought back a smirk. That was a first. He cleared his throat before he spoke. "Is that what I think it is?"

Edward nodded, closing his eyes, as if it would shut out the embarrassing truth. "Uh, if you think it's a dildo, then yes, you'd be right."

"That's … uh, well, I have to say this is a first for me," Emmett admitted, taking Bella from her owner's hands and giving her a quick inspection. She seemed healthy; her eyes were bright and clear, she was well fed, and her fur was soft and plush. There was no doubt that Edward took great care of her, although she was on the small side.

Emmett held her in one hand as he peered at her chart. "She's five months old? Looks like she's going to be a small cat."

"There's nothing wrong with her, is there?" Edward asked worriedly, although a blush filled his cheeks again. "I mean, other than the fact that she ate … um, well, ate what she did."

"She's absolutely fine, she just has a more delicate build," Emmett reassured the man. "And as for what she ate, let me give her a thorough exam, and we'll go from there."

Edward watched as the vet gently inspected Bella, pressing on her abdomen, listening to it with his stethoscope. She looked tiny in his large hands. They were so careful though, handling her like she might break. Edward felt himself relax, trusting the large, handsome man who was caring for her. Bella seemed comfortable with him, purring as the vet held her close to his broad chest and stroked her back.

The vet looked up at Edward, a large smile spreading over his face as the cat purred and head-butted his hand. "I have every reason to believe she's going to be just fine. The toy appears to have irritated her stomach, but she's not in any distress. There's no fever, no bowl obstruction."

"Oh, thank God," Edward said, his body sagging with relief.

"You can call me Doc McCarty," the vet said with a dimpled grin. "Or Emmett."

Edward cracked a smile and reached out to run his hand along Bella's back, his fingertips brushing Emmett's chest. "She's really going to be okay?"

"Yes. I'd like to keep her today for observation, and give her some oral lube to help the pieces of, uh, silicone to pass."

Edward snorted, and a laugh escaped his lips before he even realized it. "You're giving my cat oral lube to help get the dildo out of her body? Oh, fuck."

Edward sank into the chair behind him, covering his face with his hands as he laughed. He didn't know if it was relief from the stress or what, but that was suddenly the funniest thing he'd ever heard.

He heard the other man chuckle, and soon they were both laughing. Edward finally wiped his eyes and looked up, shaking his head slowly at how ridiculous this whole night had been. He'd gone from complete and utter panic to giddy, breathless laugher in minutes flat. All because his damn cat had eaten his dildo.

Edward smiled at Emmett. "I'm sorry … I just … God, that's funny."

The vet gave him a broad grin and scratched behind Bella's ears. "It really is. I didn't even think about it. It's standard procedure for an animal that ingests foreign objects. We get dogs in here all the time. They're kind of notorious for that sort of thing, G-strings, condoms … they'll eat anything." His expression grew more serious. "The toy Bella ate, it didn't have a condom on it, did it?"

Edward shook his head, heat filling his cheeks again at the thought of what they were discussing. "Uhm, no."

"I only ask because I was concerned she could have eaten it. Well, and for your health. I mean, if you and a partner are both using the toy without a condom, there are potential health risks."

"Uhhh, yeah, that's not a problem. I'm … single." Edward swallowed hard. "It's never been used by anyone but me, so I didn't use a condom."

Emmett felt a surge of relief at the man's statement that he was single, although he couldn't say exactly why. Actually, he suspected he knew exactly why, but that wasn't something he wanted to get into at the moment. "That's good," he said, nodding. "Very good."

"So, Bella's gonna be okay?" Edward asked.

Emmett smiled reassuringly. "She's going to be just fine. I'm going to keep her here for observation but that's just me being overly cautious."

~Doc~

Edward gave Bella a final pat and kissed her on the head before he handed her over to the vet for observation. The little traitor didn't even look back at him, snuggling against the larger man contentedly and purring loudly.

Emmett gave her a dimpled grin and promised Edward he'd take good care of her, instructing him to come back at 7 pm to pick her up.

Edward agreed, leaving the clinic a little reluctantly after he paid the vet fees. He'd never left Bella alone before, and he hated feeling like he was abandoning her. Although, if there was anyone he trusted to take good care of her, it was the man with the bright blue eyes and gentle touch. He drove home, feeling relieved that his cat would be all right, but flustered by the entire encounter with the handsome doctor.

Too bad he didn't have the guts to ask the man out, because every inch of him was Edward's type. He was still thinking about him when he stripped out of his clothes. He collapsed into bed when he remembered he had work in a few hours. He trudged downstairs sleepily to grab his phone, calling to leave a message on his boss's voicemail that he would be working from home that day due to an emergency vet trip.

There was no way in hell he was going to admit to his boss—or anyone else at his work for that matter—what exactly Bella had eaten, but he would give them the abridged version. He yawned and plugged the phone in when he was done, remembering to switch off the alarm before he tumbled into bed. He was out moments after his head hit the pillow.

Emmett watched Edward leave before he carried Bella to the back room. He couldn't stop thinking about the cat's tall, attractive owner. Edward was probably early-to-mid-twenties—maybe five years younger than Emmett. He was lanky, with a lithe but fit build. Emmett liked the way he'd blushed, although he felt bad for the other man's embarrassment over the situation. The blush though … it was appealing, and Emmett wondered if he flushed when he was aroused. Vasocongestion, Emmett thought, knowing the physiological response and wondering why a simple bodily reaction like that was so damn appealing. He could picture it though, Edward moving under him, the pale skin on his upper abdomen growing pink before it spread across the chest, then continued to his neck, face, forehead, back, shoulders and forearms.

The vet shook his head, trying to clear his mind of that altogether too-appealing fantasy, and focused on his patient. He set her down in a towel-lined cage and filled a dish with water and another with a small amount of moist food. She lapped at the water eagerly and made use of the litter box in the corner, but she didn't touch the food, scratching at the floor beside it like she was trying to bury it.

Emmett frowned, perplexed by the action, and grabbed a syringe filled with oral lube. He snickered to himself. He really hadn't considered the irony of using it until Edward laughed, but it was funny. The vet scooped the cat up, tucking her under his arm as he gently pried her jaw open and inserted the syringe. He pressed the lever and squirted a little into her mouth before withdrawing it. She made a face, swallowing it down and rubbing her tongue on the roof of her mouth to get rid of the sticky substance, and then squawked in protest.

"I know," Emmett said soothingly. "But you're the one who got yourself into this mess, little one."

The vet carried Bella back toward the office. Technically, he was supposed to leave her in one of the cages in back, but she was so small, and he hated the thought of her all alone in there. Emmett had some reading to do, and with time to kill before his shift was up, he figured he could do that while keeping an eye on the cat.

He settled onto the sagging green couch in the office, a pile of files on the floor next to him. Bella curled up on his chest and began to purr. By the time Emmett finished the first file, she was out. He smiled down at her. He loved all animals, but there was something about the dainty grey and white tabby—and her very cute owner—that got to Emmett.

He sighed, wondering if it would be horribly inappropriate if he asked the man out. The problem was, he had no indication if he was gay or not, he couldn't assume he was just because he owned a dildo, and he could wind up alienating a potential future customer. Dr. James was a fantastic vet, but a real stickler about rules like that.

Halfway into the fourth file, Emmett felt his eyes drift close. The warmth of the small furry body on his chest soothed him, and he nodded off.

Emmett awoke with a start, a strident meow in his ear waking him abruptly. Tiny claws kneaded his chest, and he yelped, gently wrapping a hand around the cat's mid-section and working the claws loose from the fabric of his scrubs. "Fuck, cat, that hurts," he muttered. He petted her anyway and lifted her up to get a better look at her when he sat up.

She was bright-eyed and squirming restlessly, and he had every confidence that she was going to be just fine. "You sure scared your owner, little one," he said. "And what on earth possessed you to chew on a sex toy?"

He heard a snort from across the room, and his head whipped over to see Jasper Whitlock, a vet at the clinic, giving him a curious glance as he filled a coffee cup. "The cat ate what?" Jasper asked, tucking his blond, curly hair behind his ear.

Emmett cleared his throat, tucking Bella against his chest as he walked over to the other man. "This little one decided that her owner's dildo would be a delicious midnight snack."

Jasper snorted again and shook his head. "Man, that had to have been awkward for the poor girl. I'm impressed she told you."

"He," Emmett corrected. "And he even brought it in. I was pretty impressed, too. A lot of people would have lied about it, but he seemed really worried about the fact that it might have hurt her."

Jasper nodded, "That is rare. Poor guy though, that's embarrassing."

"Definitely."

He nodded toward the kitten in Emmett's arms, setting his mug down on the counter. "Can I see her?"

Emmett nodded and handed her over, washing his hands so he could make himself some coffee. Jasper inspected Bella carefully for a moment before tucking her against his neck. Bella purred and rubbed her head against him, making the man smile. "She's a little love, isn't she?"

"Yep," Emmett said, stirring a healthy dose of cream and sugar into the coffee. "Seems to be fine, too. She threw up a few times—that's why he brought her in to begin with—but I don't see her having any long-term effects from this as long as it all passes properly."

"Good," Jasper said. "I hate to see animals harmed because of their owner's carelessness."

Emmett bristled at the suggestion that Edward had done something careless. "Cut the guy some slack. He used a sex toy on himself and then washed it and left it on the edge of the bathtub. I would have done the same thing myself. Granted, I know Rosie likes to chew on everything," he said, referring to his two-year-old Boxer, "so I'm religious about putting things away. But she's a dog, they chew everything. A cat though … have you ever seen a cat go after something like that?"

"Well, no," Jasper admitted. "That is unusual."

"Exactly. I'll remind him to be more careful in the future, but you can hardly fault a guy for what he did."

Jasper gave him a speculative look. "Awfully defensive about this guy. Is he cute?"

Emmett rolled his eyes. Just because Jasper had a girlfriend he was nuts about, he was always bugging Emmett about his dating life. It had only been a few weeks since Emmett had gone on a date, but that hadn't amounted to anything, and it had been months since he'd been in a relationship. Or, gotten laid, Emmett thought, since the two things always went hand-in-hand. He wasn't the one-night-stand type.

"He's cute," Emmett admitted, taking a sip of his coffee. "Very cute, actually."

"Twink?" Jasper asked with a grin, and Emmett rolled his eyes again.

"I'm not into twinks," he protested. "Just because every man I date is smaller than I am doesn't mean I like effeminate guys. "Hell, your build is fairly similar to Edward's. So I'm half a foot taller and forty pounds heavier than most men I date. I have a type. But body type and demeanor have shit to do with each other, and you know that."

"Settle down," Jasper said, passing the grey cat back to him. "I'm just giving you shit."

They walked together toward the exam rooms and Emmett felt Bella's purr calm him. "Sorry I got so worked up," Emmett apologized. "I am … rather interested in this guy, I just don't know that I should make a move."

"No worries," Jasper said. "Why not?"

"Dr. James and all his bullshit rules about professional conduct."

Jasper snorted and lowered his voice. "Professional conduct, my ass. He's banging Vickie and has been for months."

Emmett's eyes widened. "How did I not realize that?"

"No idea. But yeah, you asking out the cute guy who brought his pet in is no big deal. Besides, you know that Dr. James wants us to buy him out when he retires, he'll be wanting to stay on your good side."

"Hmm," Emmett mused. "Good point."

He gave Bella one last final pat before securing her in the cage. He brought her fresh food, but she pawed at the floor beside it again. "Have you ever seen that before, Jasper?" he asked.

Jasper frowned and shook his head. "Nope. That's odd."

"That's my only concern. I'd like to see her eat before we send her home."

"Yeah, agreed. I'll keep an eye on her throughout the day. That's the brand the owner normally feeds her?"

"Yeah, that's what he marked down on her intake sheet."

"Hmm."

Emmett glanced at the clock and realized it was nearly time for him to leave. Other employees trickled in, mingling, as they got ready to start their shift. He called everyone to order, and ran through the cases from the night, finishing up with Bella. He tried to keep things professional as he explained what happened to her, but the team was howling by the time he got to the fact that he'd prescribed oral lube.

"Oh, God, that's priceless," Vickie snorted.

Emmett glared at her. At least the cat isn't screwing someone almost thirty years older than she is, he thought uncharitably, then realized that, number one, that made no sense, and, number two, he was being overly sensitive.

"Come on, everyone," he coaxed. "I know it's an unusual situation, but be nice. I expect you to be professional when the owner comes in, he's embarrassed enough. He was brave enough to bring her in and be honest about what happened, he deserves to be treated with respect."

The team sobered, nodding, and Emmett relaxed as he went over the final care instructions. They were all good people, but working with sick and dying animals was stressful, and he knew they sometimes needed to let off steam. They hadn't meant anything bad by laughing, but he didn't want Edward any more embarrassed than he already was, he thought as he walked out to his Jeep.

~Doc~

This time, when Edward awoke, it was more gradual. He rolled over and squinted at the clock, shocked to see it was after noon already. He stretched and realized he was naked under the covers and hard.

He closed his eyes for a moment and flashes from the dream he'd had flitted through his brain. He felt his skin flush hot as he remembered. It was a dirty dream, even for him, but this time the man starring in it was none other than Doctor Emmett McCarty.

"Damn," Edward muttered, remembering the dream of him riding Emmett's cock, his hands splayed out on the man's broad chest, Emmett's blue eyes watching Edward's every move. He groaned and forced himself to get out of bed.

Edward tugged on pajama pants and a T-shirt and fixed himself a bowl of cereal, carrying it up to his home office. He logged into his desktop while he ate, remoting in to the computer at work. He worked as a programmer for a small software company. He liked the job and was very good at what he did. It hadn't exactly helped him meet people though, he thought ruefully.

He set an alarm on his phone, knowing that once he was immersed in coding, he'd be oblivious to the world, and he wanted to grab a shower before he headed to the vets' office to pick up Bella. He missed her, he realized as he began to work. She usually curled up on the corner of the wooden desk and slept, or plunked herself down in his lap, when he worked from home.

At least she was going to be okay, he comforted himself. No permanent damage. He just couldn't buy sex toys ever again.

Hours later, he silenced the alarm and stood, his back cracking loudly. He was starving, having worked for hours without stopping, and he was stiff and sore. He stretched and ambled toward the shower, shedding clothes on the floor as he went. He was going to have to be more careful about leaving anything lying about, he realized. He showered quickly but lingered in front of his narrow closet. He had a small wardrobe, but the tiny closet was stuffed to the gills because there was never enough storage space in a house this old. He did like his bedroom though; he'd remodeled it and the second floor bathroom already. The bedroom was painted a tan color, with dark wood floors and furniture, and the bathroom was green with white accents.

For a geek, he was pretty handy, and he had his father to thank for that. It had come in handy when all he could afford was a fixer-upper. But in the time I've lived here, I've made some major progress on the place, he thought as he finally dressed in jeans, a T-shirt, and a plaid button-down.

He brushed his teeth, made a token effort to style his hair, and glanced at the clock, realizing he needed to leave if he was going to be on time.

After his shift was over, Emmett went home and slept, stopping only to greet his dog Rosalie. Hours later, he awoke to her snoring; she had her head draped over his thigh, and he took a moment to scratch behind one ear. She lazily opened one eye for a moment, going back to sleep immediately.

He got out of bed, made a meal, and then did a few things around the house, still half-asleep. He took Rosalie for a walk. He'd had a pet door and heavy duty fence put in, so she could go outside and roam while he was at work. Twelve-hour shifts were too long, and this way, he didn't have to hire someone to take her out. His neighbor checked on Rosie at least once a day anyway.

After a lazy day, he headed back to the clinic. He arrived early, and Alice, the daytime receptionist and Jasper's girlfriend, raised an eyebrow at him. He waved and headed back to find Bella. She was snoozing comfortably, and Jasper gave him a rundown on her status. All bodily functions were working normally, and aside from the fact she hadn't eaten, she was fine.

Her owner arrived half an hour later, and Emmett felt his heart speed up as he carried Bella into the exam room. Edward's face lit up, and Emmett wondered what it would be like to be on the receiving end of that smile. He passed Bella over, babbling about her progress. The small cat rubbed eagerly against the man's neck, purring so loudly; it seemed impossible for something that tiny to make that much noise.

When Edward smiled, Emmett's breath caught in his throat. Damn, Edward was hot. Emmett liked his long lashes and square jawline. His features were almost pretty, but there was nothing feminine about the way he carried himself. In short, he was absolutely perfect, Emmett thought with a sigh.

"So, I can take her home?" Edward asked hopefully.

"There's just one thing I wanted to discuss with you," Emmett said. "We couldn't get her to eat. We used the brand of moist food you wrote down, but she wouldn't touch it. And she pawed at the ground next to it, like she was trying to bury it."

Edward let out a relieved laugh, snuggling Bella closer, and smiled at the vet. "Oh, she's always done that. She hates moist food and only eats the dry. She pretends to bury human food, too. I can't set a plate down on the coffee table without her turning her nose up at it."

Emmett chuckled. That wasn't behavior he'd seen before, but if it was normal for her, he wouldn't worry. "Let me grab some of the dry food, and as long as she eats a few bites, I'll let her go home."

Emmett disappeared into the back to get the food, and Edward set her on the exam table. She dug into the food in the bowl, crunching happily at the dry kibble and scarfing it down. Both men smiled in relief, and Emmett leaned against the stainless steel table, making small talk with the cat's owner. They discussed Edward's job and when he'd bought the cat.

Edward relaxed, liking the man's easy-going demeanor and quiet, strong presence. And, if he was being honest with himself, his broad shoulders, gorgeous features, and bright blue eyes didn't hurt either. He even liked the neat, light-brown goatee that framed his full lips, and Edward had never been partial to facial hair.

Bella let out a strident meow when her bowl was empty, and Emmett poured a bit more in for her. He wanted her to eat, but he also really wanted her owner to stick around longer.

They continued to talk, and Emmett liked the slightly shy, geeky demeanor Edward had. He made no secret of his love for his work, and although a lot of it went over Emmett's head, he liked the man's passion. Emmett often did the same thing when he discussed various animal ailments.

"I really want to thank you," Edward blurted out. "For taking such good care of Bella. I'm kind of … alone right now. I mean, my family is several hours away, and I have a few friends, but they're pretty busy. I kind of have work and Bella, and that's it. I don't know what I'd do if something happened to her."

Emmett covered the man's long, narrow fingers with his own large hand. "Hey, I understand. Pets are as important as the people in your life, sometimes more. That's what got me into this field in the first place. I had plenty of friends growing up, but my dog …" he swallowed, remember his golden lab, Dexter, who had died when he was seventeen.

Edward nodded, liking the feel of the man's warm hand on his own. "Yeah. It's just … hard to meet people in this town sometimes." His cheeks were suddenly hot. "Uh, guys especially."

Emmett nodded sympathetically, groaning at the sight of Edward's long lashes against his flushed cheeks. Jesus that was hot, and it seemed like Edward was definitely hinting he was gay. "I know. It's not that easy for me to meet guys, either. Especially with the hours I work."

Edward nodded, swallowing hard. He'd thought it was just wishful thinking that Emmett was gay, too.

Emmett's finger grazed Edward's, and he was about to open his mouth to ask the other man out when Bella head-butted their joined hands. They both jumped, and Edward pulled back.

"Time to take her home," he said abruptly. "Uhm, she's ready to go, right?"

Emmett nodded. "Yes. Just keep a close eye on her. Make sure she's using the litter box regularly, and if you notice any changes in her behavior, don't hesitate to call or bring her in."

"Will do," Edward said, gently loading her into the carrier. She settled in, and he turned to the vet, giving him a small smile. He wished he had the guts to ask him out, but he just couldn't force his mouth to open and say the words.

"Oh, and keep an eye on your other toys," Emmett said with a wink. "We wouldn't want to see her back here having devoured something else."

Edward stiffened, his cheeks going red with embarrassment. "Yeah, I made that mistake once, I won't do it again."

"Edward," Emmett replied, chagrined at embarrassing the man further. Especially when he'd made such a big deal about it to the rest of the staff. "I didn't mean it like that. I'm sorry …"

"No, it's fine," Edward said stiffly. "Thanks for taking such good care of her."

With that, he was gone through the door on the other side of the room, the cat squeaking a protest at the way the crate was swinging.

"Damn it," Emmett muttered. "That did not go the way I planned."

~Doc~

A few weeks later, Emmett still hadn't gotten the programmer and his adorable cat out of his head. Not that it mattered, short of looking up his address in the files and hunting him down at his house—which was vaguely creepy and stalker-ish—there was no good way of finding him. He'd gone to Spiral, the gay club in town, on the off chance Edward might be there, but he hadn't been that lucky. He was this close to asking Alice to call the man and have him bring Bella in for a check-up, but it was totally unethical.

Rosalie gave a soft woof and brought his attention back to what he was doing. They were out running, and he'd fallen behind. She was practically dragging him, no small feat for a sixty-pound dog when the man weighed close to two-twenty. He sped up and let her lead him into the adjoining neighborhood.

He'd moved into his house just a few months prior and lived on a quiet, tree-lined street. The houses in this neighborhood were older than his though, well-maintained, but some were clearly works in progress. Emmett had bought a place already rehabbed; he had no skill when it came to home repairs, but he was always impressed with people who did.

He turned the corner, gently tugging at Rosalie's leash so they could make a loop and head back home. He slowed when he saw a shirtless man shoveling dirt into a raised flowerbed around the front of the house. He was tall and lean with lightly defined muscles in his back that made Emmett's mouth water.

The man stood up straight, leaning on the shovel for a moment, and Emmett was transfixed by the sweat trickling into the cargo shorts that sat low on his hips. Jesus, he thought, the man's wife is probably inside the house wondering why in the hell some stranger is shamelessly ogling her husband.

But Emmett couldn't tear his eyes away. He shifted on the sidewalk, his cock hardening, pinned awkwardly in place by the stretchy fabric of his boxer briefs.

Rosalie's impatience broke through his thoughts again as she woofed and tugged on the leash. The man spun around, nearly tripping over his own feet, and the two men stared at each other in shock.

"Doctor McCarty?" Edward said, blinking in shock at the sight of the gorgeous vet who appeared to be out running with an impatient, but beautiful, fawn and black-colored Boxer.

The man was dressed in shorts and a sleeveless shirt, his biceps on full display. Edward leaned more heavily on the shovel, imagining those arms wrapped around him. He brushed the sweat off his forehead, hoping that his heavy breathing would look like physical exertion rather than sexual arousal.

"Edward. I didn't realize you lived around here. I'm just a few blocks over in the Northside neighborhood."

"Oh," Edward said dumbly, trying to get his whirling brain to have one useful, conscious thought. "Yeah, I moved in a few years ago. I'm fixing the place up."

Emmett moved closer and the dog trotted over to Edward, sniffing his feet curiously. "It looks great," the vet said, licking his lips at the sight of Edward's bare chest. He was fair-skinned, and the lean musculature of his torso was equally good from the front, lightly defined, with soft-looking hair trailing from his navel to the edge of the olive cargos he wore. "It looks great," he said roughly, not talking about the house at all.

Edward was equally transfixed by the man in front of him, wanting to feel all of that lightly-tanned skin against his own, feel Emmett's weight pinning him to the bed. "Thanks. Want a tour?"

The words left his mouth before he even realized it; although he knew what he really wanted was to ask Emmett into his bed. He wasn't that brave though.

"Yeah, that would be great," Emmett said, blinking in surprise. "How's Bella doing?"

Edward reached down to pat Rosalie's head as he led Emmett inside the front door. "Great! She's been playing like crazy with the toy mouse she likes so much and driving me nuts begging for attention. Things are back to normal," he said.

"I'm glad to hear it," Emmett said sincerely. "She's a sweetheart."

Edward smiled fondly. "Yeah. What's your dog's name?"

"Rosalie. She's two, very smart, but she can be a little standoffish."

Edward tilted his head, looking down at the dog wagging her tail eagerly and bumping his leg, trying to get him to pet her more. "She is?"

"With women; we think a woman abused her. She was brought into the clinic as a puppy, half-starved and nearly dead, covered in cuts, with a broken leg. Honestly, I wasn't sure she was going to make it, but, she pulled through, and I took her home once she was well enough. I spent a lot of nights caring for her, and I couldn't turn her over to a shelter."

Edward smiled, liking the protective note in the other man's voice. He was an intriguing mix of strength and gentleness. "She's gorgeous now."

Emmett knelt down beside his dog and roughly scratched her head. She leaned into it, her tongue lolling out appreciatively. "She's a good girl."

"If you want, I could get her some water, and she can run around in the backyard while I give you a tour," Edward offered, not wanting there to be any excuse for the other man to leave any time soon.

"Sure, as long as the yard is fenced in."

"It is; the previous owners had dogs," Edward explained, heading into the kitchen to fetch a big bowl and fill it with water. Rosalie lapped at it gratefully when he set it on the floor, and Edward realized he should probably offer the other man something as well. "Uh, would you like something to drink? I have water, beer, and lemonade."

"Lemonade would be great."

The men washed their hands and drank lemonade before letting Rosalie out in the small, neat yard. It had a high wooden fence, and Emmett felt comfortable letting her roam out there unsupervised.

Edward took him on a tour, and Emmett was impressed with the work the man had done. It was easy to see which room still needed updating: the mudroom and half bath were covered in hideous floral print wallpaper, and the dining room had a sponge-painted border that made him cringe. The rooms Edward had re-done were incredible though, painted in soothing colors and decorated in a simple, masculine style that went well with the home's Craftsman bones.

Emmett tried not to stare as he followed Edward up the wooden staircase, but it was impossible. His ass was right in front of him, and Emmett had to fight not to see if it felt as good as it looked. I am not leaving this house without asking the man out, Emmett promised himself.

Edward shifted nervously when they approached the office, all of his geekery was on display, complete with Doctor Who posters and a life-size Captain Jack Harkness cardboard cutout from the spin-off Torchwood, because what nerdy gay man wouldn't have a crush on an openly bisexual character with a wicked sense of humor? Edward had jerked off more than once or twice thinking about him, that was for sure.

"This is great," Emmett said. "Who is your favorite doctor?"

"You," Edward blurted out, and then closed his eyes, humiliated by the fact he said that aloud, when the man had been asking about TV characters. "Fuck, ignore that."

Although his eyes were closed, he felt the heat from the other man's body as Emmett stepped closer. "You like me, huh?"

"Yeah," Edward croaked. When he opened his eyes, he saw Emmett's just inches from his own, ocean-blue and warm.

"Well, you're the favorite owner of a patient of mine," he murmured, before he closed the distance.

Edward's eyes closed again as the other man's lips touched his, warm and soft, tasting faintly of lemonade. His hands shook as he clutched Emmett's T-shirt, not wanting him to pull away.

Emmett's large hands cradled the back of Edward's head as the kiss deepened, and they were both panting when they finally pulled away. Edward's eyes were wide, his lips parted and damp, and Emmett desperately wanted to see if his chest was flushed, because his cheeks certainly were.

"Damn," Emmett said, and Edward nodded. "I was planning to ask you out on a date before I left, but I think that answers my question."

Edward nodded again and licked his lips. His voice was hoarse when it came out. "Uh, yeah, the answer is definitely yes."

"Tomorrow maybe?" Emmett offered.

"Yeah, that would be great. But, um, you don't have to run off right now or anything? Unless you have to be somewhere."

"I can stay. Besides, I should take a look at my patient."

"Oh, she's probably curled up on my bed," Edward said. "It's her favorite place."

"Can't say as I blame her," Emmett murmured.

The small, striped cat was curled up on Edward's bed, but she happily woke up when Emmett's large hand passed over her, stroking her fur gently. She mewed at him and let him pick her up.

"We can sit out on the deck," Edward offered, swiping a clean shirt and putting it on, much to Emmett's disappointment. The men headed back downstairs, both of them aware of the large, comfortable bed and how much they wanted to be tangled up with each other on top of it.

Emmett paused at the French doors leading outside, and Edward reassured him. "You can take Bella out with you. I let her out there with me, supervised." He paused. "Uhh, unless Rosalie will eat her or something."

Emmett chuckled and followed Edward outside. "No, I've fostered some kittens, and she seems to like them."

The men took seats on the shaded patio and talked, Emmett letting Bella drape herself over his shoulder, ignoring her little claws digging into his skin, and Edward idly scratched Rosalie's head when she placed it on his knee. The men talked for hours as the heat of the day faded. They had a lot in common, and flirtatious banter wove itself through the easy conversation. It was early evening by the time they realized they were both starving.

"Would you like to stay for dinner?" Edward offered, his anxiety spiking again at the thought that the other man might leave.

"Sounds great," Emmett said. "What did you have in mind?"

"Fuck," Edward swore. "Uh, I have no idea; I was supposed to go grocery shopping today."

"Why don't I run to the store and pick something up?"

"Sure," Edward agreed, remembering what he'd been doing before Emmett arrived. "I can finish up my project outside and clean up."

Emmett clipped the leash onto Rosalie's collar, and Edward walked him to the door, depositing a disgruntled Bella on the couch. Emmett paused in the doorway, grabbing Edward's T-shirt and tugging him forward for a kiss. It was sweet and hot, the tenderness of Emmett's fingers on his jaw contrasting with the hunger of his lips.

"Come back soon," Edward said, flushing as they pulled away.

"I'll be as quick as I can," Emmett promised, unwinding the leash the dog had wound around them while they kissed.

~Doc~

Edward had deposited the soil in the flowerbed, the yard cleaned up, and he had just stepped out of the shower by the time nerves hit him again. He felt anxiety grow as he slipped on his favorite pair of jeans and a comfortable green shirt that made his eyes look especially nice.

He tried to quell the nerves as he tidied the house, but as the minutes ticked by and Emmett didn't return, he wondered if he'd been stood up. He was slumped in a chair in the living room when he finally heard the knock on the door. He was greeted by a breathless Emmett when he anxiously answered the door.

"Sorry," he said. "I ran home to take a shower before I went to the store, and it took longer than I planned."

"It's okay," Edward said, just relieved that the man was standing in his doorway.

"I hope you don't mind that I brought Rosalie back. I could run her back home if you'd prefer."

Edward reached down to pat the dog's head and rub her silky ears. "She's fine."

The men cooked dinner together, grilling the steaks and vegetables that Emmett brought, drinking beer as they talked. They were interrupted by the hiss of the cat and the soft whine of the dog. They found the pair in the living room, squaring off, Rosalie down on her haunches, shimmying back away from the cat who was advancing on her with her tiny teeth bared. The dog was easily large enough to devour the cat in a single bite, but clearly unwilling to fight back.

"You two are ridiculous," Emmett said with a laugh. Deciding neither of them were going to do too much damage to each other, the men continued to make dinner, keeping one ear out for a fight as they worked.

When dinner was ready, they ate on the back deck, a few citronella candles lit to ward off any bugs. They each had another drink, but were still sober by the time they polished off the dessert Emmett brought. They cleaned up together, their bodies brushing more often than necessary. When Emmett couldn't take another moment, he pinned Edward to the counter, his damp hands sliding up under Edward's shirt as they kissed.

They kissed for a long time, cocks growing hard as their hips slid together. "I want to take you to bed, Edward," Emmett murmured against his throat, his hand grasping the other man's ass to pull him closer.

"Okay," Edward agreed breathlessly, his head swimming with desire.

"I don't want you to think I planned this," Emmett said. "I would have been fine with just dinner."

"I don't care if you did," Edward said, gently pushing the vet back and taking his hand, tugging the other man behind him as he moved toward the stairs.

Emmett groaned. "I just … I like you a lot, Edward. I'm not in this for a quick roll in bed."

"Good," Edward said, smiling back over his shoulder. He'd been fairly sure that this was more than just sex, but it was good to hear.

In the bedroom, Emmett dropped to his knees, unzipping Edward's jeans as the man struggled to remove his shirt. Emmett covered Edward's chest and stomach with kisses, working his way quickly down to his cock. Edward let out a choked gasp when the other man took it deep in his mouth immediately.

Edward's hand slid along the back of Emmett's head, but the hair was too short to grip. He grasped his shoulder instead, trying to steady himself at the feel of the man's warm mouth sliding up and down his cock. "I'm gonna last about a minute, tops," Edward warned him, embarrassed by his trigger-quick reaction, but it had been so long.

Emmett slid his mouth off Edward's cock, and leaned forward, kissing his hip. "Don't care, just want to taste you."

Edward slammed his eyes shut, unable to take in the sight of his cock sliding into the other man's mouth again, or the blue, blue eyes looking up at him. "Shit, shit, shit," he chanted, his fingers digging into the vet's shoulders as his hips jerked forward. He panted, thighs shaking as he tried to hold off for another few seconds. But when Emmett's hand slid up his thigh to gently tug at his balls, he was done. He came so hard he staggered back, his ass landing on the bed, Emmett somehow managing to move forward and swallow his come at the same time. Edward's thighs were still quivering when Emmett finally pulled away with one last, slow lick of his full lips.

"I don't think I'm ever going to be able to move again," Edward gasped, falling back onto the bed.

Emmett chuckled, stripping out of his clothing before removing the jeans and boxers pooled around the other man's ankles. He kissed his way up Edward's thigh and to his right hip, his lips lingering on the unexpected tattoo he found on his side.

"Man is the only animal that blushes - or needs to. ~ Mark Twain," he read, settling himself over Edward so his cock grazed Edward's stomach. "I like that. And I like your blush."

"You do?" Edward asked, surprised.

"Very much," Emmett said gruffly, shifting their bodies so they were both lying on the bed. Edward kissed him, grateful that Emmett seemed to like his awkwardness. He took his time, sliding his hands across Emmett's broad back, winding his thigh around Emmett's more muscular one. Their exploration of each other was surprisingly unhurried, although he could feel the press of Emmett's hard cock against his hip.

Their kisses were deep and slow, bodies moving languorously against each other.

"I want to be inside you," Emmett eventually murmured against Edward's ear, his lips tickling the sensitive skin there.

Edward gasped, pushing his hips up to meet Emmett's, their cocks sandwiched between their bodies. He was hard again; turned on by the taste, feel, and sight of the other man. "Okay," he agreed.

"Lube and condoms?" Emmett asked, and Edward nodded, gesturing for the nightstand.

Emmett prepared him slowly, until Edward was squirming on the bed, three fingers filling him. Emmett sat back, slicking his condom-covered cock with lube.

"Turn over," Emmett murmured, hovering over Edward's body, kissing his chest to distract himself from how badly he wanted to be inside the other man.

Edward rolled over, feeling Emmett's knees settle between his thighs. He kissed his way along Edward's shoulder as he let his slick cock slide between Edward's ass cheeks. Edward shivered, closing his eyes and trying to be patient.

Emmett shifted so his stance was wider, dropping his head to press his lips to the shell of Edward's ear. "Are you ready for me?"

"I'm ready," Edward said hoarsely. "Please."

Edward felt Emmett's warm breath against the back of his neck as the other man slid inside him. It was slow and careful at first, but they both jerked when Edward suddenly relaxed, and Emmett was buried deep inside him.

Emmett's fist curled on the bed, struggling not to come the moment he was seated inside Edward. He felt so good, his ass gripping Emmett's cock like a vice. "So good," he murmured. "You feel so good."

Edward's answer was a wordless moan as he arched his back, rising to meet the sweet, slow thrusts Emmett was making. His head swam at the way Emmett's cock filled him, his strong body surrounding Edward. Emmett's lips dropped to the back of his neck, teasing the sensitive skin there as his hips rolled in a slow, steady rhythm.

Edward panted, moaning quietly with every thrust. He reached back, fumbling for Emmett. His fingers curled around the back of Emmett's neck, not caring about the awkward way his arm bent upward.

Emmett's chest grew slick, sliding across Edward back and with every brush Emmett's nipples grew more sensitive. Edward clenched around him when he swiveled his hips, and he did it again, over and over, until Edward was a panting, begging mess beneath him. He whined in disappointment when Emmett pulled out, but gave a pleased grunt when Emmett flipped him easily onto his back.

Emmett kissed him roughly, bracing himself on one hand, while the other aligned his cock and pushed into Edward again.

Edward's head fell back, their lips separating, as he panted at the feeling of Emmett inside him once again. "Yes," he hissed, and Emmett smiled.

"Needed to see you," he said, kissing along Edward's jaw. "Wanted to kiss you and see your eyes when you came."

Edward's hand slapped against Emmett's bicep as he gasped and gripped him tighter. "You're going to kill me, Emmett."

Emmett chuckled, nuzzling against Edward's throat with his cheek. "Why is that?"

"Tell you when I can think straight again …" His words dissolved into a throaty moan and his hips rose to meet Emmett's thrusts.

Neither of them spoke after that, both too consumed by their growing need. Emmett slid an arm under Edward's shoulder, their sweat-slicked chests pressing together as they kissed. Trapped between their bodies, Edward's cock slid over the ridges of Emmett's abdomen, the pressure within him building and building.

He cried out as a deep thrust toppled him over the edge, and he clenched around Emmett. His blunt nails dug into the other man's bicep. Edward panted as he came, come slicking both their bellies. Their kisses were clumsy and uncoordinated, desperate.

Emmett lifted himself up, driving into Edward with several deep, hard thrusts.

Watching Edward come, feeling his body clench down on his cock, brought Emmett right to the edge. It was when Edward opened his eyes and met Emmett's gaze, bringing one hand up to brush his thumb over Emmett's cheek that Emmett finally lost it. Panting, breathless, and spent, he collapsed onto the other man's chest, come filling the condom. He intended to roll to the side, but Edward gripped him tightly, pinning him in place.

"I like your weight against me," he said, and Emmett smiled and kissed him. He pushed Edward's damp hair out of his eyes and settled more comfortably over him. Edward's leg wound around his, and his hands slid across Emmett's broad back.

"I like you," Emmett said quietly. Edward cradled the other man's face in his palm, brushing the pad of his thumb across Emmett's full lips.

"I like you, too."

They kissed for a moment, before Emmett sat up with a reluctant groan, withdrawing from Edward's body. Edward felt paralyzed by nerves as he watched the other man strip off the condom and toss it in the trash. He wanted to ask Emmett to stay, but he couldn't seem to manage it.

"Shower?" Emmett asked, striding toward the bathroom.

"Sure," Edward said, finally peeling himself off the bed. His legs were a little shaky as he followed the other man. When they were in the shower together, Edward turned away, feeling shy and awkward. But Emmett noticed, wrapped his arms around him, and kissed his temple. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing. I'm just being stupid."

Emmett's hand slid through Edward's hair as he turned the man's head so they could kiss. "Tell me," Emmett said, his voice gentle and coaxing.

Edward closed his eyes, remembering his wish just weeks before to have a man who would shower with him after sex, hold him in bed. His voice was sure and steady when he spoke. "I want you to stay tonight."

"Good," Emmett said, dropping a kiss to Edward's shoulder. "Because I grabbed an overnight bag and dog food when I stopped at my house."

Edward chuckled, relaxing finally.

The men showered together, and Emmett tugged on clothes so he could run outside to grab his bag and Rosalie's food. Edward checked on the pets, belatedly realizing that he'd been so wrapped up in Emmett for the last few hours, they could have killed each other and he wouldn't have noticed. But Rosalie was curled up on the rug by the back door, her body curved around the small, grey kitten who was fast asleep.

Emmett joined him a moment later, sliding his arm around Edward's waist, bare above the towel he had wrapped around his hips. "Well, it looks like those two hit it off as well," he commented, his lips finding what had quickly become his favorite spot between Edward's neck and shoulder.

"Mmmhmm," Edward murmured. "Let's get them fed and go to bed."

They left water and food for both animals in the mudroom and turned out the lights. When they slid into bed, Edward marveled at how right it felt to have Emmett's body wrapped around him, to feel the man's warm breath on the back of his neck.

They woke up twice in the middle of the night, hard and eager for each other. Just before they fell asleep the final time, they heard Bella jump up onto the bed with a mew and settle onto Emmett' firm stomach. Edward had his head on Emmett's chest and his arm flung across his hips. Bella settled into the crook of his arm, purring immediately.

They heard the click of Rosalie's nails on the hardwood floor and her quiet whine at the side of the bed. Emmett chuckled softly, and Edward patted the bed. "Come on up," he said, and the dog clambered up onto the low bed, getting comfortable at their feet.

Two tall men, a sixty-pound dog, and a tiny kitten all settled in to sleep, and Edward was just drifting off when Emmett spoke. "Remind me to buy you a toy to replace the one Bella ate."

"What?"

"I want to see you use it on yourself."

Edward moaned. "That's what I meant about you killing me. The dirty talk is really hot."

Emmett chuckled. "Good to know."

"And I'm never buying another sex toy again," Edward protested. "Too dangerous with that cat around."

"We'll get a locked box for it," Emmett promised. "And besides, you have a vet now."

Edward slid his hand across the other man's stomach until he reached Emmett's hand. They twined their fingers together, and Edward settled more comfortably in the man's embrace. Yeah, he did have a vet now, he thought. And he'd never been happier.


Notes: First of all, yes, this story was inspired by a real life incident. I did indeed have a cat that decided that my toy would be fun to snack on. That was the most embarrassing/hilarious trip to the vet's office my husband and I have ever taken. Our vet was quite amused by the situation as well.

Secondly, I'd like to thank all of the amazing people who helped me with this. Born OnHalloween who helped me come up with the idea in the first place and helped with the summary. Karenec who is always brilliant at helping me brainstorm, came up with the title, AND helped tweak the summary. Jordan, Alexander, and Paul, who pre-read to make sure I got the gay male perspective right. And Alice's White Rabbit for her stellar beta-ing. Couldn't have done it without you all.