by Mark Andron and Time Lady

Chapter 9

She looks around at the sky. “It’s getting dark. We better head down.”

“All right.” A smug grin forms on Tora’s face “Last one there is a pillow for the other.”

Smiling, Tegan puts on her pants and panties, which lay off to one side of the roof where Tora tossed them. “You’re on. Ready. Get set. Go!” She shifts into cat form and disappears through catspace.

Upon reaching the living room, Tegan shifts out of her cat form, and then she sees Tora just standing there. “How did you..?”

“Trade secret, my love.”

“Why you....”

“OK, I’ll admit it. I cheated.” Tegan’s response is to pull a pillow out of cat space and lob it at Tora. “All right all right all right.... I accept defeat!” Tegan pulls out another pillow and thwaps him with it.

“That’s better.”

Tora picks up the pillow that was thrown at him. “Are these down or foam?”


“I have my reasons.”

“I think these decorator pillows are filled with fiberfill. Why do you ask?”

“Ah well. At least there won’t be much of a mess. Pity.” Tora throws the pillow back at Tegan, who barely manages to catch it before it strikes her chest. “I believe they call that the beginning of a pillow fight”

“Oooohh... why you....” Tegan launches the pillow back at Tora, followed by several more pulled out of cat space. Tora hides behind the nearest piece of furniture, lobbing the pillows Tegan throws back in her direction. The barrage continues for a few moments, until Tegan is hit full in the face by a pillow. She hits the floor with a resounding thud.

“Tegan! I’m sorry!” Tora leaps out from behind cover, rushing to Tegan’s side. He kneels down to make sure that Tegan wasn’t serious hurt, only to fall to the ground from a pillow whack

“TAKE THAT!” she yells, straddling his stomach and whacking him repeatedly with the pillow.

Tora can only laugh as he tries in vain to block Tegan’s blows. Tegan soon finds herself with a massive grin on her face. “So you think this is funny, do you? Well take that and that and that and that and that”

“Okay, okay.... I give! Uncle!” Tegan smiles down at him, apparently satisfied.

“Admit it. It felt good to cut loose, doesn’t it?”

“Mmm...” she purrs.

“Um... Tegan.... your hands are moving behind you.”


Tora manages to sit upright, forcing Tegan off his stomach and onto his lap. “Now then, shall we continue this elsewhere? I think that Pop might be coming home soon.”

“Oh... ah.... er....” Tegan is blushing furiously.

“What? Don’t tell me he’s right behind me...”

“Well...” Tora turns to look behind him.

[Chinese] “What in the world are you doing to my humble home?”

“Aheh... sorry, Pop. Didn’t realize you’d be home this soon.”

Tegan smiles, still blushing, but understanding a smattering of what is being said.

[Chinese] “What am I going to do with you? Have you forgotten what I told you?”

“I love you, too, Pop.”

[Chinese] *sigh* “Could you at least have the decency to take your lover in some place other than my living room?”

“All right all right.”

Tegan begins picking up the pillows and tossing them into cat space to hide her reddening face and embarrassment. She understands the gist of what the guide is saying.

Tora pulls himself off the ground and stands in front of his adoptive father, the Jusenkyo guide. [Chinese] “So, Pop, how was the trip?”

[Chinese] “It went rather well. [looks at Tegan cleaning up the pillows] “So how long has she been with you?”

[Chinese] “Long enough, Pop.”

[Chinese] “So how often have you been with her?”

“Pop, I can’t believe you asked that!”

“Uh... well, sir, I think you’ve had a long day,” stammers Tegan, who is absolutely, completely, utterly embarrassed. “I’ll go get dinner started.” She dashes into the kitchen.

Tora shakes his head. “Pop, sometimes you can be a righteous pain, you know that?”

[Chinese] “Then why is it you come home and call me by that accursed name?”

“Because, like it or not, this is my first home as a human, and you are the only one that qualifies as ‘Pop’.”

[Chinese] “Then quit complaining. I’m just acting as any good father would.”

Tora sighs. “Look, I’m going to help Tegan out. You just take a break.” He then goes off into the kitchen. In the kitchen, Tegan has already put up some rice to steam and is currently taking out some of her embarrassment in chopping vegetables. Tora comes up behind her and gives her a hug. “Take it easy girl. He isn’t out to get us.”

“I... I can’t believe you two... that *he* was actually talking about....” Tegan’s voice trails off.

Tora tightens his hug a bit. “And just what was it do you think he was talking about?”

“My Chinese might not be good, but it was enough to understand what you two were talking about.”

“Look, he’s just reacting like any other father would. He wants to find out all he can about the one that’s captured his son’s heart. And in case you hadn’t noticed, I did get upset when he started prying into something he shouldn’t have.”

“FYI, my dad wouldn’t react like that, even if it was my brother bringing home a girl. If that was my dad... let’s just say I’d hate to see what happened afterwards.”

“Your father would rather see me skinned and on the floor of his den. This is my adoptive father we’re talking about. Besides, Pop’s used to seeing unusual things. He _is_ the Jusenkyo guide, after all.” Shrugging, Tegan pulls out of Tora’s arms and returns to chopping vegetables. “Tegan... I...” Tora leaves the kitchen and into the living room.

[Chinese] “You look troubled.”

[Chinese] “Damn straight Pop. You embarrassed my girlfriend. Of course, I didn’t exactly help much there, but still....”

[Chinese] “Do you love her?”

[Chinese] “With all my heart.”

[Chinese] “Then what are you worried about?”

[Chinese] “Pop, It’s ain’t that. I want you to apologize to her. You can do this yourself, or I can make you. Your choice.”

Oblivious of what is going on in the other room, Tegan pours some oil into a wok, then tosses in the vegetables, which she begins to stir fry. Sounds of an argument and a minor struggle occur. Shortly afterwards, Tora reenters the kitchen, this time dragging his old man with him. “Tegan, I want to apologize. Pop and I shouldn’t have talked about you like that.” Tora lifts his father off the ground, holding him in front of Tegan. “Ain’t that right, Pop?”

Tegan glances back and forth between Tora and the guide. “You know, I think I know where the streak of being completely impossible in you comes from.”

“What can I say? He was the first human I had contact with. Now Pop, are you going to apologize or not?”

“Forget it Tora. It’s not necessary. It’s just a clash between your dad’s culture and mine. Where I come from, we’re not open with that kind of discussion.”

Tora puts the Jusenkyo guide on the ground. “Are you sure? I still feel like I should do something to make this up to you.”

“Tora, trust me. From my experience, it’s impossible to make fathers do anything anyway.”

“That isn’t quite what I had in mind.” The Jusenkyo guide quietly slips out of the kitchen.

“Just forget it Tora. A lot has happened today. Right now, I think I need a little time to myself.”

“All right. If you need me, you’ll know where to find me.” Tora leaves the kitchen, leaving Tegan to finish her work in the kitchen. Silently Tegan goes about finishing up dinner. Listening to Tora and his dad made her realize how much her life changed that day. How long ago was it when she first came to Jusenkyo and fell in the pool? Since then, her life went on a complete roller coaster. Just when she thought it would slow down, it took another twist. Sighing, she shakes her head to clear it.

Tora climbs up onto the roof as he did minutes ago, this time with one of Tegan’s pillows in hand. He lies down on the roof, resting his head on the pillow. He wishes he knew what he could do now, but no answers come to him. He thinks that, since Ayla’s visit, things have been different between him and Tegan. The revelation of their past lives together unsettles him. He wonders if they are in love with each other because of some residual memory.

Tegan tries to clear her head as she sets the table and puts out the dinner. Thinking about everything at once is too unnerving. When the table is ready, she calls Tora and the guide to dinner. Only the guide arrives to the dinner table. Tora does not come. The guide has a look of shame on his face whenever he looks at Tegan.

“Err... do you know where Tora is?”

“I do not know. I not know him to be so much in love before. Mind you, he always go to roof to try and think many year ago.”

“Uh... thanks. Why don’t you start on dinner while I get him.” The guide nods. Tegan turns and goes outside. She spots Tora lounging on the roof. “Hey!” she calls up to him. “Dinner’s ready. It’ll either get cold, or your dad’ll polish it off before we can get to it.”

Tora smiles. “All right. I’m coming. So long as it’s not Cantonese Style sweet and sour pork.”

“No. Stir fried vegetables and rice.”

“Sounds good.” Tora gets up and jumps off the roof, landing in front of Tegan.

“Come on.” She leads him back into the house, where the guide has already begun eating. Tora and Tegan take their respective places, and begin to eat their meal.

“You know....” he says after a few minutes. “A few things still bother me. I have no idea how in the world how I fell in the spring, or even got to China in the first place.”

“So I guess after... whatever Ayla said... happened, you must have been drugged.”

“I guess. It still bothers me how she would know how something like that happened...” Tora looks at the meal still remaining in front of him. “Would you mind if I took a rain check from the rest of this? I just don’t feel much like eating.”

Tegan shrugs. “She seemed to know a lot of things about us, then and now.” Tegan looks down at her own half eaten meal. “Tora, would you mind packing up the leftovers?”

“Sure. I can handle that. You done Pop?” Tora looks around, and does not see the guide anywhere around. “Pop? Okay, whatever.” Tora beings to collect the remnants of his and Tegan’s meals. “I don’t question the fact that she does know us. It’s the how that bothers me.”

Tegan stands and shrugs. “She has some kind of magic. I can feel it. There’s more to it than meets the eye. Anyway, you better check on your dad. I’m going to grab that hot bath I mentioned earlier.”

“Not a prob. I’ll be up top later.” Tegan leaves for the bathroom, and the Jusenkyo guide returns once she is out of earshot.

[Chinese] “Why do you torture yourself so? You screwed up for a moment. If you both love each other, she’ll forgive you.”

[Chinese] “Pop, what the hell do you know about love?”

[Chinese] “I raised you, didn’t I?”

Tora snickers. [Chinese] “She’s right. I did learn to be impossible from you. [sighs] I’m heading topside.”

In the bathroom, while the tub fills, Tegan pulls her hair into a quick bun, then sheds her clothes. The hot water eases her sore and tired muscles as she relaxes and lets her mind drift. It wasn’t Ayla’s revelations that bothered her as much as did the sudden changes in her life. Would Tora have taken her to the cave of Misra if Ayla hadn’t shown up? Or would they have gone on as they had before? Scattered thoughts fly through her mind.

Tora, returning to his pillow on the roof, ponders again as to why he and Tegan love each other. He thought that it was because they shared a mutual attraction. Now he wonders whether or not they were pushed together by some residual memory of unrequited love. He’s not sure if they would have made love to each other in the cave and on his spot on the roof if they didn’t know their past. For a moment, he curses Ayla for doing this to them. He wishes that she didn’t tell them, that they would have loved each other, and gone on knowing that it was because they did love each other. He hates having everything he has done with Tegan being suspect.

The water relaxes Tegan’s body, but not her mind. So many changes to her life in such a little time... first falling in the pool, then chasing around the pyramid, then Madame WWW, then meeting Tora, then the curse becoming permanent, then Ayla tells them the story of their past lives. Finally she and Tora consummated their relationship. All these events crammed into a time period of about a year and a half - it’s almost too much to comprehend

Tora jumps off the roof and runs, running out as far as he can before he begins to tire. He can’t take all of this. A life that isn’t his own. A love he’s not sure is actually real. Once he stops, he lets out a primal scream. “My dear Toran, why would you do something like that?”


“Yes, me. Now why are you out here screaming like a banshee and not with Taygana?”

Tora glares at Ayla. “You seem to know a lot about me. This should be easy to figure out.”

Ayla looks puzzled “What do you mean, Toran?”

“Did you ever stop to wonder if telling us about our supposed past lives was the right thing to do?”

“The memories were already trying to force themselves through unconsciously. No, I am not a telepath. But I know of such things. Past memories begin creeping into dreams, twisting into agonizing nightmares. Do you deny that such is the case with you?”

“No. But you did seem to help the process along. And I’m not sure that either Tegan or I can handle it.”

Ayla narrows her eyes. “I believe she is handling the awakening better than you are.”

“Maybe she is. But maybe she doesn’t have reason to have every one of her actions become questionable... for all I know, I may only love her because something in me says she’s Taygana, and not because she is the person she is now.”

“And you do not believe she has any right to the same questions?”


“Trust in your heart, Toran. In your heart and in Taygana.”

Tora sighs “I would trust Tegan with my life. My heart.... my heart... I’m not quite sure what my heart is saying.”

Ayla tilts her head slightly. “Perhaps you need to see what her heart is saying.”

“Perhaps. But that seems to be something I can’t do for the past few hours.”

“That was the past few hours. Her concerns and fears may not be the same as yours. You could be spending this time now discussing these concerns with her instead of with me.”

“I could... but I needed to hear them on my own. That’s why I’m here. Why you’re here, I don’t know.”

“I was passing through this way when I heard you. The time grows late and I must soon be at my destination. And I believe you are awaited elsewhere.”

“Just two more things, Ayla. Whatever happened to Keisai?”

She hesitates, feeling uneasy about his question. “I ... do not recall the specifics of his life. But I do know that he ... lived it to the fullest.”

“Well, if he is still around after all these years, will you tell him... tell him I’d like to see him one of these days.”

“And the other thing you spoke of, Toran?”

“Could you _please_ try to stop calling us by our old names? That was in an old life, in an old time. This is the here and now, and with our new lives come new names.”

“Keisai passed on to Bastet’s spiritual realm nearly a thousand years ago, so the first part of your request is impossible, unless his spirit has been reincarnated as well. As to the other request, it will take some time for me to get used to Toran... Tora.”

“Ah, well, I could only hope about Keisai.” Tora suddenly grasps Ayla’s face and gives her a small kiss. “Thanks for running into me. And try to get used to our names... and our lives... that we have now.”

“There is no trouble in that for me... fare you well Tora.” Ayla turns and walks off into the distance.

“Ah, well.” Tora turns back in the direction of his home. Instead of running, he walks, letting the scenery slowly pass by until he reaches the front door of his house. He hesitates a moment before opening the door. He takes a deep breath, and reaches out to open the door.

Meanwhile, Tegan finished her bath and returned to her room to dry off. She slowly brushes out the fur on her arms and legs, smoothing stray fur so it lays evenly.

Tora slides open the front door, and steps inside. He notices Tegan is not there to greet him, and he feels relieved she isn’t. He also doesn’t see his adoptive father. He walks over to Tegan’s room and knocks on the door. “Tegan.... can..... can we talk?”

Tegan jerks her head up at the sound of the knock and of Tora’s voice. She grabs a bathrobe and pulls it around her. “Come in.”

Tora slowly opens the door and sticks his head in. “Am I interrupting anything?”

“No...” she says quietly. “Just drying off and brushing out my fur.”

Tora slowly drags the rest of his body into the room and sits himself down on her bed. He stares at the ground. “Tell me.... what do you really feel about the things that Ayla had shown us?”

“It... kinda clarified a lot of stuff for me.”

“Such as?”

“Well, when I was in college, I was worried about my... lack of involvement... with guys. A friend dragged me off to a psychic. The psychic told me there were higher powers at work... and that there was one man out there for me...” Tegan’s voice becomes almost a whisper. “She said that our spirits were bonded together.... and when we met, we’d know it...” Tegan’s voice trails off.

“At first, it seemed to make a few things clearer for me, too... but after a while... it frightened me. I... I thought that I was no longer in control of myself. I felt like everything I did... something that wasn’t exactly me was making me do it.... and that included... “ Tora looks up into Tegan’s eyes “... falling in love with you. I felt like I had no choice in the matter. But now....” Tora’s voice trails off as Tegan’s did. A tear rolls down Tegan’s cheek as she leans over and brushes a few hairs out of Tora’s eyes. She gently kisses him. Tora lets himself go with the kiss, until Tegan eventually pulls her lips away from his. “The same thing ran through your mind too?”

“No... I never had any doubts about... us...”

“Then what...?”

“Tora, you have to realize how many life altering changes I’ve been through in a relatively short period of time. I’m having more problems coping with that than with anything Ayla threw at us.”

“Tegan... I....” Tora cannot find the words he wants to say, so he just takes Tegan’s hand in his and feels its warmth.

Tegan smiles tenderly. Another tear rolls down her cheek.

“Hey, come on now.” Tora reaches out to wipe the tear from her face. “Please, don’t cry.”

“I can’t help it...”

Tora pulls Tegan towards him on the bed, embracing her in the warmth of a loving hug. “Don’t cry....” with his head on Tegan’s shoulder, and out of sight of her eyes, a tear rolls down his cheek.

“Tora,” she whispers. “Please... just hold me.”

“Ssh ssh ssshh... “ Tora closes his eyes as more tears form and escape from his tear ducts. “I’m here. I’ll always be here. We’ve both been through more than we would like to, but at least we’ve been through it.. together.” Trembling, Tegan seeks the comfort found only in Tora’s embrace. He strokes her back soothingly. Tora can’t find any more words to say. He can only gently stroke her hair as he has many times before, letting the relentless tears to still flow from his eyes.

“Tora,” she whispers.


“You know... when we get back to Nerima... we’re going to be grilled about what happened here.”

Tora allows a smile to form on his face. “So what do you want to tell them?”

“We won’t be able to get away with a ‘mind your own business’ - you realize that.”

“I know. But it’s better than telling them we learned about our past lives, and... well, you know.”

“I guess... we’ll just have to cross that bridge when we come to it... and see who we’re up against.” Tegan snuggles against Tora.

Tora’s tears have finally run dry. “I think I can name six right off the bat.”

“Besides half the town? The only people I think I’ll get away without telling are Jessica, Ryuji, Su, and Leo.

“Well, I’m pretty sure that PATE, Amy, U-chan, Vince, Tsu-sensei, and Cujo-sensei are going to be the ones asking the loudest. Though we won’t have to worry about telling most of them until they get back.”

Tegan smiles. “PATE is the only one I think I *have* to tell. Maybe Feathers and Penny as well. The others’ll have to beg.”

“That... I can live with.”

“Mmmm,” murmurs Tegan as she reaches up to kiss him.

As they kiss, Tora lets his body fall back onto the bed, bringing Tegan down on top of him. Tegan releases his lips. Tora’s voice becomes quiet. “When do you want to head home?”

“I’m ready when you’re ready. But... I think we need to get things straightened out with your dad.”

“Let’s leave that for the morning..”

A smile crosses Tegan’s face. “So,” she purrs. “Any plans for right now?”

“That, I think, should be left up to you. I haven’t exactly been feeling in control of myself lately.”


“Well, aside from what I said earlier, I might...” Tora crushes her lips with his, the kiss being long enough to take Tegan’s breath away “... be driven to do something like that.”

“I have no complaints.”

“Good. ‘Cause unless you can think of something better, that is what I’d rather do right now.”

“Well, for this, sleep can wait.”

The Jusenkyo guide, having opened a crack in the door large enough to see through without being noticed, sees Tora removing Tegan’s robe and she removing his shirt as they continually kiss. He quietly closes the door and walks away with a smile on his face, happy to see that his adoptive son is normal... for a tiger.

The next morning, Tora awakes as the sun streams into the room. Something moves in the bed next to him. He tenses for a minute, before the memory of the previous day’s events hit him like a sledge hammer. Tora opens his eyes and sees Tegan’s pink hair draped across the pillow. He smiles and puts his arm around her. In her sleep, Tegan turns over and curls up against his body. Tora just stares into her closed eyes, not wanting to disturb her slumber. He smiles when he sees how the sun lights up her hair. Tegan seems to seek Tora’s nearness even in sleep as she snuggles close to him. Listening carefully, he hears her purring contentedly. Tora quietly chuckles at her purring. He thinks that it’s something he’s going to have to get used to in the future. Slowly the increasing brightness in the room has the effect of pulling Tegan from her deep slumber. She tries to fight it and reaches for what she thinks is her teddy bear. What she finds is a lot bigger and slightly less hairy then her usual bedtime companion. The memory of the previous day and night flood back to her. She opens her eyes, blinks, and smiles sleepily at Tora.

“Morning.” A massive grin forms on his face. “You’re teddy bear is unavailable, so I took his spot. Do you mind?”

Tegan props her chin on her elbows and looks at him. “Not at all. Just so long as he’s in my suitcase when we head home, ‘cause I’m going to need something to keep me company at night when you’re not around.”

Tora laughs out loud, then shakes his head for a moment. “What am I going to do with you?”

“I could think of several things right now...” she purrs.

“Easy there, girl. You just woke up.”

“You *did* ask....”

Tora sighs. “That I did.”

“So... any plans for today?”

“Well, the plane leaves tomorrow evening... I have nothing specific in mind. What about you?”

“No plans here. You were the one setting the itinerary.”

“Yeah, well, I didn’t count on certain things happening... it did mess things up quite a bit.”

“Mmm...” Tegan’s face becomes thoughtful. “I had an idea about something last night, after you fell asleep. It might explain why we reacted so differently to Ayla’s revelations.”


“Well,” Tegan settles herself with her head resting on Tora’s shoulder, “it might seem a little weird. From what I understand, my spirit was completely reborn. I started over from scratch with this new life, so things of the past are pretty hazy to me.” She pauses.

“Go on.”

“You didn’t have that chance. Your soul was trapped in that crystal... until it was forced into the tiger. For you, you’re basically picking up where you left off.”

“And with everything that’s happened to me since then... my soul couldn’t reconcile what I was with what I am...”

“Hence your reaction.”

“Wonderful. You know, I’m still not sure I can reconcile it. Wonder what’ll happen if I do...”

Tegan picks her head up and meets Tora’s eyes. “Just don’t stop loving me,” she whispers. “Please.”

“I’ll always love you. Always forever.”

Tegan doesn’t reply. She leans over and gently presses her lips to his. Tora loses himself in the kiss. After their lips separate, he does not want to say anything. Tegan sighs, then rests her head on his chest. Tora begins stroking her hair. It has become a force of habit for him, one that Tegan has never complained about. “You know, I wonder how close Ayla’s village is to Jusenkyo.”

“Don’t know. From what I could tell in the book, there used to be several towns in the area, but they shrank down to the size of villages. Some completely disappeared.”

“Still, I’m willing to bet that there’s still a village around here. It’s be interesting to see how things did come out.”

“From what I’ve read, not a lot has survived. If there is a village, it’s not going to be very large.”

Tora yawns. “Oh, I’ve been meaning to ask you... what did you discuss with Ayla after you chased me off that afternoon?”

“Women stuff.”

“In other words, ‘ask me no questions and I’ll tell you no lies.’ ... was she helpful?”

“Uh huh. She explained a few... biological changes I noticed when I became a cat woman full time.”

“Ah. I don’t think I want know.... and the kicker is that I probably do know already.”

Tegan stares at Tora and shakes her head. “If you’re referring to what I think you are, no. It’s just that after I became a full time cat woman, I noticed a certain regular monthly event was only occurring every two to three months. She said it’s normal. And when it happened, I noticed I was being followed by half the male cats around. She said that’s normal too.”

Tora looks at Tegan. “Why didn’t I notice this?”

“ ‘Cause you weren’t around when it happened. After I realized what was happening, I went on the pill, which seemed to regulate things and eliminate the problem.”

“Let’s just hope that you don’t get a bad batch.”

“I guess you just have to watch out for male cats following me around, then you’ll know.”

“Wonderful. I never thought that you would have so many suitors for me to fight with.”

“I’m sure you could handle a load of tomcats.”

“So long as none of them are Jusenkyo cursees...”

Tegan smiles, then stretches, her body brushing against Tora’s. Tora gently tries to pull her towards him with his arm as she stretches. “HEY! What do you think you’re doing?”

“Just making sure that you won’t run off on me.” Tegan picks up the nearest available pillow and thwaps Tora with it.

“Now, have you finally decided what we’re going to do, or are we just going to lie in bed all day?”

“Well, we could do that if you wanted... but I think that, after we deal with Pop, we just go out and wander about the countryside... maybe stop in at the amazon village for dinner.”

“Sounds good.” Tegan reaches up to finger-comb her hair. The blanket falls away, leaving her completely exposed to Tora’s gaze. “How about we start with your dad, then grab breakfast and take it from there?”

Tora sits up on the bed. “Sounds like a plan to me.”

Tegan slides out of bed. “I think a bath is the first item of order.”

Tora manages to finally stand up, and lets out a big yawn. “Then I’ll see you in a few minutes then.”

“Who’s going to be first in the tub?”

“I always make it a policy to let the cuter one take the tub first.”

“Of course, we could always save time and share the bath,” purrs Tegan.

“Well, ... if you insist.” Tegan just smiles and bends over to pick up her bathrobe. Tora thinks to himself “Is silence a good thing or a bad thing in this case?” Tegan stands, then looks at Tora over her shoulder and smiles. Tora notices that her tail is waving much more than normal. “I’m betting... good thing” He tells himself.

“Ready?” she purrs.

“Lead on, milady.”

Tegan heads towards the bathroom and begins filling the tub. Tora follow her in and starts rubbing her shoulders as the water rises in the tub. Tegan tries to relax in the water, but she can’t seem to get it hot this morning. “Something must be wrong with your dad’s plumbing. All I can get is warm water.”

Tora continues working on Tegan’s shoulders, and includes her neck for a while. “Not much we can do about it. If it’s anything like it used to be, it gets hot when it wants to.”

“Doesn’t seem to want to now,” she sighs.

“At least it’s not ice cold. It’s been known to do that as well.”


Tora takes one hand away from the attention he’s been giving Tegan, and places it into the water. “Actually, this isn’t too bad.”

She turns her head to look at him. “Aren’t you going to join me?”

“I was getting to that.” Tora removes his underwear, then moves out from behind Tegan and soon enters the waters. He slowly sits down in the tub, and looks at his arms, seeing that they’re not that of a tiger. Sighing, Tegan moves so she’s sitting in Tora’s lap. She leans back and snuggles up against him. Tora wraps his arms around Tegan’s stomach. “You know, I think this is the first time we’ve been able to do something like this”

“Mmm...” she sighs. “I guess the water’s not quite hot enough to change you.”

“Well, I’m not complaining.” He gently kisses her neck.


Tora glides his kiss down her neck and onto her shoulder. “Your tail is starting to wrap itself around me.”

“Any complaints?” she purred.

“Not yet.” Tora switches to the other side of Tegan’s neck and resumes his kisses. “You?”

“Not a one.”


Writer's note:  At this point, the story becomes a "lemon" - meaning that there is sexual content.  If you are under 18, offended by or uninterested in sexual scenes, go straight to Chapter 10.  If you are of age and do wish to read the lemon bits, continue with "Awakenings, Lemon Addition to Chapter 9."