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He hid his smile against the top of her head. Her speech was back to normal. It had
worked.  Does so.
She sighed, and this time her breath only hitched a little bit.
They lay there quietly, Chloe occasionally shuddering out another breath as he held
her. Right when he thought she d fallen asleep, he heard her whisper his name.  Yes?
 What were you going to say?
He blinked, on the edge of sleep himself.  Oh. Love how strong you are, but love even
more that you can let yourself grieve with me.
She d stiffened when he said the L word.  You keen it?
She relaxed once more.  I shove you too.
He laughed when she groaned.  It s all right, little fox.
 No, it s snot.
He laughed even harder, almost doubling over when she began smacking his chest.
 Bass hole.
 Even if you don t say it right, I get it, Chloe. He kissed her forehead.  It s just a figure
of speech, after all.
 Hmph. She laid her head on his chest again.  Words are important.
 They are, he agreed, his laughter subsiding.  But actions are even more so. Trust
me, I ve learned that the hard way. He stroked her hair, the action soothing both of
them.  Besides, I understand what you re saying, and what you re not.
The wistful need in her voice was killing him.  Yeah.
 You know I love you, right?
 I do now, she grunted.
He couldn t help it. He laughed again.  And you love me.
She pinched his side.  Do not.
 Do too.
 Do not.
 Liar, liar, plants for hire, he sniffed.
Chloe giggled.  Don t mess up words. That s my bob.
 You d better not have a bob. He blinked.  Wait. If by bob, you mean battery-operated
boyfriend  He yelped at one particularly hard pinch.  What?
 Go to sleep, you dork.
He sighed happily.  We okay?
 We okay, she echoed.
When George, their puppy, joined them on the bed and tried to wiggle between them,
all thoughts of sleep disappeared in a haze of wet noses, wetter tongues, happy whining
and lots and lots of kisses.
And most of it happened after they kicked George off the bed.
 Hey, Chloe whispered, opening the hospital door as quietly as she could. She glanced
around, hoping she wasn t about to wake the newest member of the clan.
 Hey, Tabby replied wearily.  She s awake, it s okay.
Chloe s shoulders sagged in relief.  Cool. Chloe entered the hospital room, Jim right on
her heels.  Can I see?
Alex, sitting by his mate with the sappiest expression on his face, gestured them
A tiny white bundle lay in Tabby s arms. Chloe wanted to hold her new cousin so badly
she was shaking with it.  Oh. Please?
Jim wrapped his arms around Chloe.  Shh, little vixen. Give them a moment to hand
her over.
Tabby laughed.  Here, Chloe darlin . Meet  she darted a quick glance toward Alex,
  Wren Usagi Bunsun.
Jim choked.  You named your baby  little bird ?
 You two are so bad, Chloe giggled, snuggling her nose against the baby s forehead
and taking in her scent.  Especially since she smells like Wolf.
 What? Jim sniffed the baby too, causing the baby to wrinkle her nose and turn her
head.  Man, she does!
Alex grinned.  What did you expect from a Bear named Bunny and a Wolf named
Tabby blushed.  I like the name Wren. It s pretty.
Chloe giggled harder.  And Usagi means bunny. You named your daughter after Sailor
 And yourself, Jim chuckled.
 You knew he was going to slip some Sailor Moon in there somewhere. Tabby smiled
when Chloe stroked the baby s whisper-fine hair.
Chloe glanced at her cousin.  What would you have named a boy?
Alex grinned.  Lobo.
 No. Chloe shook her head.  You are not naming my baby cousin Lobo, you nut.
Alex pouted.  Suppose Canis is out then?
 Ugh. Chloe rolled her eyes.  Can we muzzle him?
Tabby just shook her head.  Can t. Someone s gotta help me feed the baby bird.
 Fine. Alex crossed his arms over his chest.  How about Connor?
He looked far too smug for this to be anything but some sort of trick.  Okay, Bunny. I ll
bite. What s wrong with Connor?
Alex shrugged.  I don t know. You tell me?
Chloe looked at Tabby, who shrugged.  I have no idea what he s up to this time, but I
like Connor.
 So if we have a boy, Connor Shingo Bunsun it is!
 Shingo? Chloe groaned.
 Yeah, Usagi s brother is named Shingo. Alex sighed happily.  I m so glad you guys
 Damn it, Alex, Tabby groaned.  Couldn t you use, I dunno, Darien? That s Tuxedo
Mask, right?
Alex stared at her, horrified.  That s just wrong. Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Mask get
married and have kids. I don t want three-headed grandbabies, thank you.
Tabby sagged against her pillow as Chloe laughed.  Fine. You get Shingo, I get
 Done. Alex held out his hands.  Now give me my baby girl back.
 Need to tell her the evils of men in tuxedos? Jim helped Chloe hand the baby over.
 Damn straight. Alex s whole face brightened as he stared lovingly down at his
daughter.  No tuxedo-wearing, rose-wielding asshole is gonna get by Daddy. No he s not,
baby girl. You and me forever, right?
 Ahem. Tabby cleared her throat.
 What? Alex barely looked up from the baby in his arms. He gasped.  Oh, you farted!
That s so cute!
 And on that note&  Jim grabbed hold of her arm and started edging toward the door.
 Why is your butt so warm? Alex frowned.  Is something wrong?
Chloe grabbed hold of her mate and darted into the hallway.  Three& two& one& 
 Holy shit! What the hell is that?
Jim collapsed against the wall, dragging Chloe down with him.  Think he meant that
Chloe nodded, laughing too hard to answer.
With their shifter hearing they could still hear Alex s disgust.  Tabby, I think Wren s ass
is possessed.
 Why s that, sugar? Tabby sounded calm, but Chloe could hear rustling, like Tabby
was playing with her sheets& or changing a newborn s diaper.
 Should it look like something from The Exorcist is living in there?
 Alex, we were told about this. Tabby s tone was patient.  The black stuff, the& what
did she call it? The poo cork? Is out now, and we re going to see the poop rainbow for a
 I ll never look at Skittles the same way again, Alex groaned.
Jim tugged on her hand and Chloe followed, silently laughing.  Sk-skittles.
He bit his lip, holding it in until they were in the elevator. Then he let it out again,
collapsing against the elevator wall.  Oh, jeez, that was bad. Poo cork?
They were holding each other up when the elevator finally hit the first floor. There
stood Eric Bunsun, Alex s brother, a big-ass stuffed bear in his hands.  What s gotten into
you two?
 Not a poo cork, that s for sure, Chloe gasped.
 Or rainbow candy, Jim added.
 Okay, Eric drawled. He pushed his glasses up his nose.  Can I go see my niece now?
 Sure thing. Chloe and Jim stepped off the elevator and headed for the hospital door.
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