Characters: RayK/Fraser, Ante, Frannie and Barbara Kowalski.
Word: Count: 2,202
Summary: Ray dog-sits
Ray walked in the station, he passed a guy in a chicken suit and another guy dressed up like a hot dog. Sitting down at his desk he moved a pile of papers out of the way. Fraser said that his desk was a mess, but Ray had his own system. It wasn't his fault that his system involved old take-out menus.
Frannie came up to Ray's desk and sat on the edge. She looked at him and he knew something was up. She never came over to his desk. She said it smelled like old fish.
'What you want?' Ray asked.
'What? Can't I just say hi to my brother?' she said trying to look innocence, but Ray wasn't buying it.
'Sure, sure I guess. So you don't want anything?'
'Well... Now that you mention it...'
Ray grinned. Score one for his instincts.
'Renfield's taking me on a tour on his family's bacon factory and I can't find anyone to take Ante. Could you take her for a couple of days?'
Frannie rolled her eyes. 'Turnbull. So will you take her?'
Frannie looked at him with big brown puppy dog eyes that could have put Dief to shame. Seriously, those things should be outlawed.
He was so screwed. At least this counted towards his Being A Good Brother points. He had no idea if applied to a pretend brother or if it was even a real thing but it sounded good.
Ray thought it couldn't be so hard. He had had dogs before and he currently had a turtle named Pineapple. Of course, you didn't need to take turtles for walks but that was beside the point.
Later that day, Ray came home loaded down with stuff. He now knew how a pack mule felt. Under one arm was a pink dog bed, bags full of toys hung from his arms and under his other arm was a twenty pound bag of food.
If Frannie packed this much stuff just for her dog, he had to wonder how much stuff she packed for her trip with Turnbull.
Apparently Tony couldn't take Ante because he was allergic to dogs. If you asked Ray he was probably allergic to dog walks and picking up dog crap.
He moved Ante's stuff around and somehow managed to open his door. Ante rushed through the door.
He dropped the stuff on the floor and made his way to his kitchen. If he was going to have a pink dog-bed in his apartment he was going to need some coffee. He was not a pink kind of guy.
After he made some coffee and put some extras Smarties in it he went to his couch. The Cubs were playing.
He sat down on his couch and looked around for the remote. After several moments of searching he got an idea.
'Find the remote, girl,' he said to Ante who was sitting at his feet.
She cocked her head and just sat there. It had been worth a try.
He gave up and took a sip of coffee. He let the sweet liquid slid down his throat. He looked down and his eyes landed on the remote sticking out from between the cushions.
He grinned and punched the air. He turned on the t.v. and settled back for the ball game. The only thing that could have made it better was if Fraser was here, but he was busy at the Consulate.
Fraser was probably dusty doilies or something weird and Canadian. Just thinking about Fraser made Ray grin, but that was nothing new.
Ante jumped up on the couch and rested he head on Ray's knee. He reached down and ran his finger through soft curly fur. Her tail wagged.
Sometime during the game he fell asleep. It must have been from the warmth of Ante soaking through his pant legs. She put out more heat than a hot water bottle.
He woke up to the sound of rain falling outside. His neck ached and there was an old black and white monster movie playing on t.v.
Ante's head was still resting on his knee, but when it started to thunder she jumped off the couch and ran to the bedroom.
He stood up and moved his head back and forth trying to get the crick out of his neck. He shed his clothes and he walked to his bedroom wearing just his boxers. Once in his room he knelt down and looked under his bed. Ante was under the bed curled in the middle of the floor.
'Come on, girl. Get out of there.'
She didn't move but she whimpered.
He left her under the bed and climbed into bed. After several moments she jumped on the bed and laid down, snuggling close to him. Every time it would thunder she would shake. He reached over and held her. As he patted her her shivering became less.
As he fell asleep he held her close. Lady Shoes might have been a shark but her former dog was a real scaredy cat.
That morning Ray woke up to the sound of laugher. He jumped up from his bed, visions of laughing burglars ran through his mind and he picked up a baseball bat. If he could be chased through town by a performance arsonist than a laughing burglar didn't seem that strange.
He cautiously walked into his living room and saw something that put a grin on his face. His mom was sitting on his couch and Ante was licking her face. Barbara was laughing, her fingers buried in Ante's fur.
'Having fun?' Ray asked as he dropped his baseball bat.
Barbara hugged Ante. 'Yep. I didn't know you got a new dog.'
'I'm just dog sitting.'
'Oh,' Barbara said sounding disappointed.
Ray went over to his couch and sat down next to his mom.
'What's up?' Ray asked.
'It's nothing... It's just I worry about you.'
'What's to worry about?'
Barbara sighed. 'I worry that you don't have any friends and I hoped the new dog meant you at least were trying.'
Ray grabbed his mom's hand and held it. He had had no idea she felt that way. 'It's okay. It's okay. I got Fraser.'
Her eyes went wide. 'I thought he was just your partner.'
'He is. He is but he's also my buddy.'
Barbara grinned.'Greatness! You should bring him over for dinner.'
'Yeah, sure. You don't have to worry about about me.'
Barbara kissed Ray on the cheek. 'Oh, Stanley, you're my baby I'll always worry about you. Now, how about a make you some pancakes for breakfast?'
'Blueberry?' There was nothing better than his mom's blueberry pancakes.
'Sure whatever you want. Do you think the dog would like a pancake too?'
Ante barked and Ray took that as a yes. Maybe spending all that time with Dief taught him how to speak dog.
'Her name's Ante and it sounds to me like she wants a pancake too.'
Barbara ruffled Ante's fur. 'Well, it's very nice to meet you Ante.'
After Ray filled himself with pancakes his mom left and Ante joined him on the couch.
As he rubbed his fingers through her soft fur he thought about what his mom had said. He wanted to think that the reason he didn't have many friends was because he was undercover, but really all he needed was Fraser. When he had been with Stella all he needed was her.
Thinking about Stella and Fraser made him grin. On the outside they might be different, but they were both smart and fierce. Stella probably would make a great Mountie and Fraser would make a great ADA.
He was startled out of his thoughts by a scratching at his door. It looked like Ante needed to go out.
As he got up Ante went over to her bags of stuff and pulled out a doggie rain coat. It was such a bright pink that it made his eyes hurt.
'Oh, no. You're not wearing that.
He had to put his foot down. Dog-sitting Frannie's dog was one thing, but walking a dog wearing pink was another thing entirely. He had a reputation as a Chicago hard guy to protect.
He walked out with a rain coat-less Ante and thought 'how bad could she be.'
Walking into his apartment he now knew just how bad Ante could be. It seemed like she found every mud puddle near his house and managed to jump in them.
Her white fur was dark with mud.
'Come on, it's bath time.'
As soon as he said that Ante ran into his bedroom. He found her laying under his bed. At least she wasn't laying on top of his bed, he didn't need mud all over his sheets he had just washed them last month.
'Come, on, girl. You gotta take a bath.'
'Okay. Okay. Take a bath and I'll let you have a slice of pineapple pizza.' He felt a little ridiculous bribing a dog, but whatever worked.
It must of worked because Ante got out from his bed and walked into the bathroom.
Ray went into his living room and went through Ante's stuff. He grinned as he found a bottle of dog-shampoo. The bottle said Mango Delight.
He walked into his bathroom. Ante was already sitting in the bathtub. He turned on the shower and lathered up the shampoo.
As he was rinsing her off he heard a knock at his door. He grinned.
'It's open, Fraser!' Ray yelled.
He heard the door open and heard Fraser walk through his apartment.</p>
'Hello, Ray.' Fraser said from where he stood in the doorway.
'Hey,' Ray said as he picked up a towel and rubbed Ante dry.
'Oh, dear. If you are busy, I can come back later.'
'Nah. I'm almost done giving Ante a bath. Make yourself at home.'
When Ray walked out of the bathroom with a cleaned Ante following behind him. Fraser was sitting on his couch and Dief was laying on Ante's dog-bed.
Sat down next to Fraser and Ante laid across them resting her head on Ray's lap. She was still damp and the water was soaking through Ray's pants, but he couldn't bring himself to care. Fraser was here and all was right with the world.
'You wanna watch the game?' Ray asked Fraser.
'Of course. That sounds wonderful.'
As they watched the game they fell into a comfortable silent.
After the game was over Ray turned on the radio and laughed when his favorite song came on.
Ante must have liked the song too, because she danced around his living room. Ray joined her. As he moved with the music she moved around his feet.
Ray laughed. 'Hey, Fraser. Look I'm Dances With Dogs.'
Fraser looked over at Ray and smiled.
'Wanna dance with me?' Ray asked.
'Of course.' Fraser got up from the couch and stood next to Ray. He moved stiffly and Ray thought he was going to have to do something about that.
He wrapped his arms around Fraser back and they danced. The more they danced the looser Fraser became until he limber.
As the song came to an end Ray dipped Fraser. It had started as a joke and Ray was going to laugh, but Fraser lifted his head and their lips met.
Ray's eyes went wide. He had never thought about kissing Fraser, but now that it was happening he wondered why they had never kissed before. Fraser lips were warm and chapped. Ray deepened the kiss and Fraser made a happy noise.
Ray lifted Fraser from the dip, his arms were getting tired, and he moved one hand up to Fraser's hair. It was soft under his fingers. The smell of soap and shampoo filled his nose.
They broke the kiss and Fraser was grinning. His eyes were bright and shinning. That made Ray grin too.
'What was that?' Ray asked.
'It was a kiss. Is that okay?'
'Yeah it was great. Wanna kiss again?'
'That sounds wonderful.'
As their lips met Ray thought that if this was want happened when he dog-sat he would have to do it more often.
After a couple of days Ray took Ante back to Frannie's. she jumped out the car and ran into Frannie's arms. He took all on Ante's stuff out of his car and carried into Frannie's house.
As he drove home he felt like something was missing. Ante had always liked to sing along with the radio.
Once at his apartment he made himself a cup of coffee. Fraser came up behind Ray and slipped his arms around Ray's waist. He melted into Fraser as he put his hands on Fraser's arms.
'Are you all right?' Fraser asked.
'Yeah. Yeah. I just kinda miss Ante.'
'I'd buy you a dog if you want me too.'
Ray smiled. Leave it to Fraser to try and make him happy. Ray didn't need a dog. He had Dief and Fraser and that was more than enough. Well Dief and Fraser and a ping pong table.