The bustling minds of rainy modern Toronto go about doing their daily deeds. Commuters need taxi-ing, shops need manning, and drug dealers... need to do what they do. What? Don't judge. And all these people pass by a certain soaked mass of dull pink fur and ragged clothes, not taking notice of the helpless girl (/woman? It's hard to tell...) laying there near the brink of death. Well, not everyone...

Broken, twisted and hurt emotionally by past memories, the hopeless feline lays near a messy gutter, feeling pain, sorrow, anguish and generally just feeling sorry for herself, waiting for death to claim her...

"Excuse me?" an unknown voice calls

With much difficulty, the girl lifts her head just enough to see the origin of the voice, to see a gray cat with a worried expression upon his face and an umbrella over her drenched body

"Who?" is all she can utter

"Why are you laying here? Don't you have a place to go home to? Or a shelter to stay under?" the gray feline asks

"N-not anymore" the girl stutters, attempting to suppress the painful memories

"Well my ass of a flatmate just recently moved out of my apartment. Would you like to come with me?"

"You'll... you'll take me?"

"Of course! Who wouldn't?" the unknown cat asks rhetorically, extending a hand "I would say 'who wouldn't help such a beautiful girl in such a pitiful state' but I think that'd be too forward"

"Th-thank you Mr...?"the girl asks, wanting to know the name of her savior, taking his hand shakily

"Please, call me Leo." he answers, flashing her a friendly smile, something she hasn't seen in many years


"Sorry my place is a bit of a dump. I've kinda been partying since that guy left..." Leo admits embarrassingly, leading the mystery girl he met in the street inside his apartment

"No, it's not too bad" the girl replies quietly, remembering how long it's been since she's seen the inside of a residence

"Heh. Thanks for the sympathy" Leo chuckles, disappearing momentarily only to come back holding something white and fluffy, which he passes to the girl, saying "Here, catch"

Thwump. The girl catches the material, relishing in how soft and warm they are "I know these things. We used to have them back home. Ugh. Home. Stop it! Don't think about that horr-"

"Towels. Heard of them? No offense, but I believe you need a shower" Leo states matter-of-factly, not noticing the inner turmoil the girl is going through

"Ah. Th-thanks" the girl replies nervously, realizing how shabby she appears at the moment, feeling the longing of a good, thorough shower

"No worries. I believe there's everything you'll need in there. Oh, and I'll leave a set of clothes outside the door. They may be my size but I think you'll fit into them" Leo remarks, surprised at his own hospitality, watching the mystery girl slowly make her way to the bathroom. "Oh yeah, by the way..."


"I never got your name" Leo admits bashfully, putting a hand behind his head

"Oh right... My name's... Aeris. Aeris Cole"

"Aeris... what a beautiful name" Leo mutters under his breath, though he is heard by said girl

"Hehe... Thanks" Aeris replies blushing, before disappearing into the bathroom for a much needed shower.


In Leo's mind...

Okay, let's run though everything that has happened today: Got up and had breakfast? Check. Went to work? Check. Made a trip to Gameshop? Check. Found a mysterious female pink anthropomorphic (like myself) cat near death in a gutter?... Check. Proceeded to take said girl home which she somehow agreed and didn't call rape? Check. Said girl, named Aeris, taking shower in my bathroom will proceed to wear my clothes in my apartment?... Check... Huh. Strangely enough, this isn't the weirdest thing to happen to me... What to do now... Even how old is she? 15? 25? Sometimes it's hard to tell with girls... She's probably hungry... Would she like ramen cup noodles? Only one way to find out...


In Aeris' mind...

Okay, either God has a cruel sense of humor or the Wheel of Fate seems to be wonky... One moment I'm dying in the gutter, the next moment I'm taking a shower in a nice stranger's apartment... Oh my gosh... how I missed this feeling... Hmm... Leo... he's an interesting character... I guess oblivious, naive, 20-something-year-olds are not a dying breed after all! That naivety or his will be the death of him someday... How long has it been since I've been near running water? I don't even think that hell-hole even- Aeris, you've got to stop brooding about the past. It's. Over. You're away from that atrocity and am now free. Tough up. Now, what to do... - Huh, I've seen these clothes before! I swear I've seen someone wear a dark grey shirt with blue pants around the college I used to- College. Money. Oh man, it's going to be a tough ride getting back on my feet... *Growl* Aw crap right. I haven't had anything since last week... I wonder if Leo would let me... Don't push yourself Aeris! He already took you in and gave you permission to use his shower. He isn't a charity organization! But a meal would be ni-... *Sniff sniff* something smells good! And strangely familiar as well. I hope he doesn't mind seeing me like this. I mean, that was the only bra I owned... Aeris blushes looking down at her newly washed and dryed radiant pink fur, clad in borrowed clothes. Alright, here we go... Aeris pauses, before opening the bathroom door


Normal POV


"Oh hey Aeris! Are you all clean and refreshed?" Leo answers from the kitchen, hearing the bathroom door open

"Yeah, it was amazing. Are those...?" Aeris questions, pointing at the two steaming cups Leo was bringing toward her

"Ramen cup noodle! Want some? I figured you haven't eaten in a while, and this is the only thing I have that was readily available!" He answers cheerfully, offering her one of them, complete with chopsticks

"You... You're giving me a meal? After I've been such a burden to you?" Aeris asks worriedly, her eyes staring at the cup hungrily

"Of course I am! If I'm being hospitable I might as well do the full package! Doesn't the saying go 'help others in time of need'?" Leo winks pushing the ramen into her hands, then heads for the living room couch

"Thank you very much..." Aeris answers absentmindedly, staring at the meal in her hands, still shocked at Leo's generosity, as she follows him and sits next to him

"You're all too welcome. Hey! Mythbusters is on! Sweet!"

"Myth...busters?" Aeris asks curiously, not remembering what TV is

"Yeah, the TV show! It's this awesome show on Discovery channel where these guys bust random myths that are given to them! It's soooo awesome and usually includes guns and explosions. Oh! And there was this one episode where..." Leo continues to drabble on, not knowing his audience is deep in thought

"Huh... TV. I haven't seen this for god knows how long. We weren't wealthy enough to even afford cable- Bad thoughts again! Go away! Speaking of shows... The way Leo is describing that episode he mentioned makes him look like the entertainment... Heh, what a strange guy indeed"

"-and he comes in and 'Whoosh!' straight off the ramp! It was awesome!" Leo finishes, clueless that Aeris only listened to half of it

"That does sound very entertaining Leo. Let's see what they have in store for us today..." Aeris lies, nonchalantly changing the subject back to the TV, grabbing the remote which "!"

"!" happens to be covered by Leo's hand. But, to Leo's shock, Aeris doesn't only retract, but instinctively jumps back, hands covering her head, as if expecting a blow.

"A-Aeris? You okay?" Leo asks, surprised at her reaction to his touch

"Huh?" Aeris asks, puzzled why she isn't being punished for the contact

"I said 'are you alright?' I'm not going to hurt you..." Leo explains trying to calm the cowering pink feline

"You-You're not? But back at my old place-" she abruptly stops, trying not to remember her past again. Though she does want to explain to Leo, so she takes some deep breaths and continues "Back then, I was punished for doing something that wasn't told. So why aren't you hitting me or something?" she explins, still confounded about Leo's abnormal reaction

"Wha- I would do no such thing! Why would I beat you just for touching my hand?" Leo asks, astounded by her thinking he would do such a thing

"But back at my place-"

"This isn't your place! You're not going to get beaten by anyone while I'm here!" Leo declares, pulling the distraught girl into his chest, rhythmically rubbing her back, again, attempting to soothe her

"Really? Th-thank you Leo..." Aeris stutters out, relishing the warmth from being held (a thing she can't even remember getting previously), slowly becoming drowsy because of countless hours of no sleep and endless insomnia.

"Hehe, no probs Aeris" Leo admits bashfully, blushing slightly at the contact, calming the sleepy girl in his arms

"R-really... Thank you..." Aeris mumbles before drifting off into sleep, with one big grey fluffy pillow to lie on.



New story here! Based off of Misery by TSO (good band/song, be sure to check them out!

Also, they may seem OOC because it's the whole alternative-reality thing, but their canon personalities will come into play later!

Look forward to more! (Or don't... *puppy dog eyes*)