A/N / So... Here is a second installment. Call it Chapter 2. Hope you enjoy.
As is normal for my Muse, the unrepentant ass that he is, has found something he likes and isn't going to be letting me go any time soon. Much to you apparent delight my good readers.
The events herein take place a year or two after the movie. This seems to be a Slice of Life story, so it is slower than some other action-packed fics.
Note: I will occasionally be using an internal dialog technique here that I am totally stealing from another author. I loved it so much I'm test driving it here in hopes of using the same technique in my original works.
I do not own and claim no rights to Zootopia or its characters. They belong to Disney.
Continued from the last chapter… Therus Cafe
Watching Mike and Lizz's eyes bug out at the display, Nick and Judy share a quick sideways kiss and glance, as they grin at the tigress and wolf facing them.
N: Think that did it?
J: I sure hope so. If not, we're going to have to get a bit past PG13 to drive the point home.
Judy continued to scritch Nick's cheek, working her way to his neck, drawing a pleasured sigh and purr from him. "Mike. Lizz. I'd like to introduce my mate and father of my kits, Nicholas WildeHopps"
Nick's voice husky with the purr he found himself unwilling to control. "Mmmm I'll give you ten thousand years to stop that, Fluff... Lizz. Mike. I'd like to..."
Lizz cut him off, waving her paws in front of her. "WHOA! Hold up right there! You're having one off on us now, right? This is a... What's it called? You're pulling a prank. This restaurant. Knowing the cook. Mike being here. You two... You just... You foxes have a specific name for it." Pointing at Nick "A, uhm..."
Judy grinned, releasing Nick to a disappointed whine as he took the seat next to her. "A getting, and no. This is not a, getting. Nick."
Nick nodded as he took a sip of his tea. "Nope. Not a getting, though there may have been a minor hustle involved to get the two of you here."
Lizz looked down at Judy, ears back. "What was all that about us being friends then?"
Judy smiled. "Lizz... I do consider you a friend. Enough of one, that we are revealing to you that Nick and I are mates, husband and wife. That we have been for over a year. That we are having kits together. We know how hard it can be for interspecies couples. We discussed it, Nick and I, and it is clear that you guys are still hiding, that you probably feel alone. But you aren't."
Mike's brain finally kicked in and he gasped. "You! You just marked each other!"
Nick chuckled. "Hey buddy. Back with us?"
Mike laughed, heartily, bending over and holding onto the table and Lizz's arm. The others watched him as he tried to get control of himself. Lizz was clearly put off by the display as her tail flicked angrily. "Mike... What is so gods be damned funny?"
Getting himself under control, a grin still on his face, Mike reached over to Lizz, brushing her cheek with his paw and looking her in the eyes. "I don't tell you nearly often enough. I love you." Leaning in, her position on the chair put him right at her height, and planted a kiss right on her lips.
Lizz's eyes went wide, trying to catch her breath after the kiss. "Mike...? We're in public." She hissed at him. "What are you doing!"
His grin never faltered. "I know. In public, where we are about to have dinner with our friends, Nick and Judy. Friends that have just confided in us that they have been in a relationship, mated; married even if their rings suggest anything, for over a year. A year during which they have managed to keep it a secret from the entire precinct, even trained sniffers like me."
Lizz's eyes flicked over to Nick and Judy who had situated themselves next to each other and were grinning knowingly back at her, to Mike, and back again. She took in the closeness, the casual drape of Nicks arm around Judy's shoulders, almost protective, a drape that she had seen for over a year, and suddenly took on a whole new dimension. The rings on their fingers. Rings she'd never seen before, yet she realized she'd seen the evidence for and never realized. They'd had ring depressions in their fur for months now, just like other married mammals she knew that took their rings off at work for safety.
Shaking her head, Lizz looked at Mike a final time then back to Nick and Judy. "How... How have you managed to keep it a secret? I don't understand. How do you know about..." Looking back at Mike who shrugged.
Mike slipped into the booth next to Lizz. "It was that raid a while ago. That one I got called out on suddenly. I doused myself in mask and ran out. Nick and I were doing the new thing, where he is on my back with the rifle. Twelve hours like that. I suppose I tried to delude myself that he wouldn't notice, but he did. Called me out on it on the way here actually."
Judy shook her head. "We didn't want to stress you out too much, just wanted to let you know that you are not alone. That there are places, like this, that you can come, as a couple. That, and we're both about to be parents. Of course we're kinda assuming that they're Mike's, and we will all need someone to lean on, talk to, complain to."
Mike chuckled and Lizz blushed hard enough her ears became tinted. "They are. We've been trying to figure out how to explain how I am having hybrid kits, and just... We can't come up with anything other than admitting the truth. Thing is, like you guys know, that means separation."
Judy blushed as Nick's grin grew before speaking. "Well, actually. Bogo is aware of our being mated. Being separated is up to his discretion. It is why we maintain absolute professionalism on the clock. With how long you have been together, that shows that you can maintain it without question."
Shaking his head, Mike looked up at Lizz then back to Nick and Judy. "Okay... Still. How have you managed to hide it? I can't make sense out of it."
Nick laughed. "Simple. We moved in together." Giving Judy a light peck on the cheek. "Judy's idea. We're together on the job in the confined space of a cruiser and our cube where we share a large mammal chair. We're together off the clock. Everyone knows we moved in together as friends and partners to spread the cost and convenience. They also know how hard it is for a fox or rabbit to get a reasonably priced apartment outside of Happytown. We made no secret about that, though we also didn't tell anyone but payroll and HR where that was.
Sure, there was some weirdness because we're Pred/Prey or Fox/Rabbit, but other than that, everyone knew our dynamic. It is what fed the initial WildeHopps speculation before we ever crossed that bridge ourselves. Therefore, the fact that our scents overlap just goes as assumed. We take a good shower, but don't try to cover it up otherwise. You, during that raid, had me on your back, and yet despite the fact that I had not had a shower, you never even blinked at how strongly I KNOW I smelled of Judy."
Mike gave a bark of laughter. "Oh, I noticed. I just never thought anything of it, for that very reason. You always smell like Judy, because you always are together. It's just an accepted fact."
Lizz shook her head. "So, when you both started to talk about having found mates." Pausing a moment in thought. "You never actually stated what species, just talked about how amazing they were as mammals."
Nick nodded. "Exactly. We let people just assume. Let them fill in the blanks from our long standing denial of being in a relationship. If you think about it, we actually stopped denying it, or insisting that we are just friends. Sure, we make that as a statement, because it is true, but we stopped outright denying it, turning to simply ignoring the statements. Therefore, mammals assumed Judy had found herself a city rabbit, I a vixen, and we were just tired of arguing.
There was also the assumption that we either had a place big enough, or one of us would end up moving out, but no one ever bothered to ask. It never even occurred to anyone to wonder why neither of us ever smelled like any other mammal than each other. There is a reason we have never had anyone over to our place, and it isn't because our place is smaller. It's actually mid-range wolf sized."
Erin stepped up with a wide smile. "Here's your drinks. Food will be just a few more minutes."
Mike spoke up. "Can I get a menu?"
A brief frown crossed Erin's muzzle. "I already had an order in for you sir. Large chicken burrito with extra cheese."
Mike looked over at Nick and the clearly smug smirk. "Yeah, my mistake." Taking a sip of his water. "So. What do you think about inter-species relationships?"
Erin shifted, embarrassed, her ears folding to the side. "I really don't care. Where a mammal finds love, as long as it is consensual, and nobody's getting hurt. Who am I to judge? Are... Are you both mates?"
Judy grinned up at Erin. "Now you know why you'll be seeing more of me."
Chuckling nervously, Erin nodded. "Yeah. Makes more sense now." Turning to Mike and Lizz. "We get lots of inter-species couples in here. Surprised me at first, if I am being honest. But when I see them, like you guys... I see how happy you make each other. I was hired with another waitress, both just part time, but I work both mine and the shifts she was supposed to. She freaked out on the first couple that came in. Got fired on the spot, and the manager decided to just keep me on for both and then fill in a third slot that had been open for a while."
Mike looked on in shock a moment. "Wow. Really? So I guess the management is pretty inter friendly then."
"They definitely are. Let me go check on your food."
Erin walked away and Lizz leaned against Mike. "Okay. I get how you guys are getting away with it, but we have worked so hard to keep it hidden. What are we going to do?" Her laying flat, tail flicking, worry clear in her eyes.
Judy nodded in understanding. "Right. We, Nick and I, have been working to prepare things. Thus the whole thing about finding mates. It'll be clear once I give birth and Nick is suddenly on leave as well. We're going to visit the precinct with the kits. Ben will finally be able to pay out on our pool."
Nick nodded. 'Oh. That reminds me, he said to call him. Something about having something you wanted?"
Judy gave a very predatory grin and little cackle. "Yes! That is for an actual, getting."
"Oh?" Nick looked down at Judy in concern "Anyone I know? I haven't earned one have I?"
Judy's grin turned mischievous. "You're good, slick. It's your cousin."
Nick sighed and shook his head. "Yeah. I knew you'd never let that go. I've warned him." Nick turned his attention back to Mike and Lizz. "My cousin totally has a proper getting, coming to him. Judy I and have kicked around a few ideas, but this is your lives, and while we want to help, it will be up to you. Do you want our help? If you just want us to be there as friends, then that is what we will do, but if you want our help, ideas, etc... We're here for you, whatever you decide."
Mike looked to Lizz and they shared a look.
M: So, what do you think?
L: I'm out of ideas.
M: Me too. So...
L: So, who better to help us than these two. They've turned the entire reveal of their own relationship into a hustle.
M: They have at that. If anyone can help us work an angle that will let us come out and not get seperated, it's Nick.
L: And Judy. She's clearly got some hustler to her as well.
M: Truth. Now, when did we start being able to communicate like them?
L: Don't know. Probably being around them for too long.
M: I'll buy that. So, do we accept their help?
L: At least hear the ideas.
M: It'll be nice to have friends we can be open with, fully.
L: Totally agree.
Mike turned back to Nick. "We're at least open to ideas. We're pretty much stumped on our own."
Judy grinned. "That's great. I know we can help you guys."
Nick nodded. "I'm pretty sure we can.. So... let's talk about how we can help you two. First question. Do you at least live together?"
Lizz nodded. "Yes. Have since about a year after we got together. It's hard though."
Erin arrived with their food. "Hi guys. Here comes the food. Chicken burrito?" Mike raised his paw. The half salmon went to Lizz, a spicy chicken and shrimp burrito went to Nick, then Erin stopped. "Uhm... I know you said you know the cook, but he gave me a shrimp burrito and a small salmon steak? I'm sorry, there must have been a mix-up..."
Judy cut her off. "Nope. No mistake. Gimme!" Reaching out towards with food with eagerly grasping paws.
Erin blinked and took a surprised step back. "Ma'am?"
Nick looked up. "I'd give it to her or she might take a bite out of you. I learned quickly not to argue with pregnant rabbit food cravings."
Setting the food down in front of Judy, Erin watched in fascination as Judy tore into the salmon.
Judy moaned around a mouth full of fish. "Mmmm ... Gods, Fin is a damn genius. So good." Noticing that Erin, Lizz, and Mike were staring at her in disbelief. Her voice slightly altered by the mouthful of fish. "What?"
Lizz blinked. "Judy... You're eating fish? You're a rabbit! You can't eat fish! ... I mean... Well... can you?"
Laughing and swallowing her bite. "What? I have a belly full of fox-bunny kits. I need a lot more protein than a typical rabbit pregnancy. Doc said I might have weirder than normal cravings, including for the protein only meat can provide."
A deep rumbling laugh came from below and they all looked down to see Fin. "Nick was right, the look on the face of the wolf and tiger was totally worth it. Glad to see you like the salmon as always, farm girl. But don't go trying to blame being pregnant on your carnivorous ways, rabbit. You been stuffing you buck toothed grill with my shrimp burritos for almost as long as you've know the red menace next to you."
Judy glared at Fin. "Not helping!"
"Not trying to, Toot toot."
Lizz swallowed her own bite of fish. "This is good, and what!? Judy!" Shock clear in her voice.
Shrinking down and biting her burrito. The shrimp, rice, and cheese very clearly visible. She chewed and swallowed quickly. "What? Nick dared me to eat a bite of his and... It was just so good..." Taking another bite, her ears falling behind her head to hide the blush.
"Told ya. Something wrong with you rabbit. But there had ta be for you to rope Nikky into being a cop, let alone turning him into a rabbit's mate. Still don't know how it works that y'all can have kits. But then..." Waving at Lizz and Mike. "Looks like the wolf and tiger pulled it off too, so what the hell do I know? I'm just an ex-con, ex-hustler, thug, and newly minted cook." Quickly making his way back into the kitchen, Erin returning to her duties.
After that, they enjoyed the meal, with Mike and Lizz watching Judy eat with rapt fascination as the rabbit devoured all her food and picked off a few bites from Nick's as well. After the meal, and a refresh of their drinks, they began a discussion on how to address the issue of Mike and Lizz, and the revealing of their relationship.
Nick leaned back, Erin having just cleared their plates and refreshed their drinks. "Okay. So you do live together, that's something. The difficulty being that you have worked so hard to cover up this fact. First two things then are that you need to immediately stop with the buckets of musk mask.
Everyone knows you two are in a relationship you don't want anyone else knowing about, the speculation is with whom and what. Only reason the consensus can come up with is that you are both in inter-species relationships. Since you have done such a good job of keeping it secret and keeping things totally professional on the clock; many seem to think that you're both worried that the other is anti-interspecies, thus the mask. Second, or perhaps this first, you need to talk to Bogo."
Mike nodded. "Okay. So... Saying it without saying it. Doesn't matter how long we've actually been in a relationship."
"That's part of it, though much like how we got you two here, we're going to need to hustle Bogo a bit to get you both in his office at the same time."
Judy giggled then stopped. "Oh bother..." Her ears falling as a look of frustration crossed her muzzle. "Nick, can you help me down."
Smiling, he picked her up gingerly and set her on her feet. "There you go. Five minutes longer than I expected."
"Yeah, I'll be right back." Looking up at Lizz. "I'm surprised you haven't needed it."
Lizz chuckled. "Oh, I've had to for some time. I just didn't want to be the first pregnant lady to give in." Getting up. "You boys behave. Let us pregnant ladies take care of a few things."
Mike and Nick watched their mates walk away and were quiet for some time. Mike studied his drink, looking outside, clearly deep in thought before he turned back to Nick. "Thank you."
Pulled from his own revere, Nick cocked his head to the side and raised an eyebrow. "For what?"
Mike nodded towards where Lizz and Judy had walked off to. "She has been so stressed, and it has only gotten worse as the due date has gotten closer. I mean, we have been mates for years, but never official because of so many things. That we are inter-species, the job. Worry over what my family, my pack will think, her family, her brothers... They like me as her partner, but will they accept me as her mate, father of their nieces and nephews?
It has just been so much, and we have felt so alone in it all. We knew there were other inter couples out there, but had no idea where to seek them out, and online proved to be no extra help. All the anti-inter crap out there. I haven't seen her this relaxed, this easy to smile, in months. So thank you."
"Well. Judy and I will be here for you guys. We know where there are safe places. Places you can go and just be together without judgment. Places where the comments will be how adorable you are together, and you two do strike a picture. We'll introduce you to other interspecies couples that we have made friends with. There is a whole support network out there. If you want to go out somewhere and are worried about it, just call us. We can go as friends, providing each other cover. Once the kits are born. I see babysitting and play-dates in the future."
Mike looked at Nick as his head fell to the side, ears cocked. "Okay. Who are you, and what did you do with Nick Wilde?"
Ladies restroom a few minutes prior.
Judy looked at the small toilet with a glare that should have melted it. "Cheese and Crackers. No steps. I need to give Fin a piece of my mind." Frustrated tears started to form as his ears fell.
Lizz saw this and reached down. "Give you a boost?"
Sighing in resignation, Judy climbed onto Lizz's paw and then onto the toilet after she'd lifted her up. "Thank you Lizz. It sucks being short to begin with. I mean, I'm pretty tall for a rabbit actually, but being pregnant prevents me from being able to jump up on things." Sighing again as she was able to relieve herself.
"I can only imagine. Still, I can imagine that having to ask for assistance all the time must really be frustrating."
"Nick built me a set of stairs next to the toilet so I could do it myself. I'm sure there was some selfishness involved too. Don't have to wake him in the middle of the night to help me, but at the same time."
"That was really thoughtful."
"Yeah, and when I come back to bed, he's awake anyway. Making sure I'm okay, that everything is okay."
"Same with Mike. He's missed more sleep worrying about me than I have, being unable to find a comfortable spot. Getting me a leg pillow, a body pillow, massages."
"That's Nick too. He's so thoughtful. Not like he puts on around others. You guys are getting to see inside the walls he puts up. It really was him that insisted that we reach out to you, but we had to do it his way."
"Hustle me into meeting you and hustle Mike into meeting us here. I can see how that might be needed. You done?"
"Yeah." Climbing onto Lizz's paw and then off onto the floor. "Thanks. I've enjoyed being pregnant and all, but..."
"There are things you would do without. I get it. Do you know how many you are having?"
"Nope, nor the sexes, etc... We only know that it is more than one. Nick insists on it being a surprise, and I'm with him on that. We're not just interspecies, but Pred-Prey, Fox and Rabbit. The doc says our kits appear healthy, but until they're born..."
"You worry." Helping Judy access a sink. "I totally get that. I mean. Wolf and Tiger? You'd think it wasn't possible, and yet here I am, with four. Four cubs I thought I'd never have. We need to move after they're born, but we don't have a clue where to. I've done some looking, but as soon as they get a whiff of us being interspecies, it's dial tones."
"We can help. There is a network out there that you guys don't know about. We tripped over it by accident, but it has made all the difference in the world. We've had support, offers for legal advice and representation if we need it." Looking up at Lizz from the bathroom door. "This is why we are here. We know you guys have been doing it on your own. Of all the officers, Nick and I consider you and Mike to be our closest friends."
Looking down at Judy and wiping away a tear. "Damn emotional while I'm pregnant. Thank you Judy. I don't know how to express how much this means to us. Just this one place, where we could come and be together without fear. I've been so worried. About Mike, about our jobs, the cubs, everything. I feel like I can see the end of the tunnel already, and it's only been a bit more than an hour. There are so many things we want to do, but have been so afraid to even think about."
Grinning up at the Tiger, Judy pushed the door open. "Then let's get back to our mates and see if we can't make some plans."
Lizz nodded, following her out. "Yes. Are there outside places too?"
"Yes. Parks. Hybrid friendly daycare." Judy's ears went up as they approached the table.
Back at the table as Judy and Lizz approach
Mike looked at Nick as his head fell to the side, ears cocked. "Okay. Who are you, and what did you do with Nick Wilde?"
Judy laughed as she walked up, Nick chuckling as he replied. "Oh, I'm still here Wolfy. Carrots has shown me that it is also okay to care about others, that not everything needs to be shields up and battle stations." Reaching down and helping Judy back up to her seat.
"Yes. he's figured out that the world isn't quite as ugly as he thought. The world is still pretty hostile towards foxes, and inters like us. But there is a lot of support out there too, so we stick together. When Nick figured out the truth. " Waving a paw toward Mike. "Strapped to your back for all those hours, he demanded that we help. We both also knew that it would take some doing to get the two of you somewhere that it could come out safely."
Mike nodded. "Yeah, I almost didn't come, but I had to keep up appearances. Now I'm glad I did."Looking up at Lizz who smiled down at him.
"So am I." Leaning over and giving Mike a kiss, Lizz's smile moved into a grin. "It is so amazing to not feel the pressure. The question however comes back to what do we do after we walk out of here? That's what still scares me."
Nick nodded as Judy spoke. "As for the job. Bogo needs to know. As to our co-workers. That's a harder one that we'll defer to you both on, as it is your lives and no one else's, and the master hustler for."
Nick mock bowed to Judy. "Why thank you Fluff. About time you recognized my value." Flinching back from an elbow to the ribs. "Ouch! Geez." Looking up and Lizz and Mike's laughing faces. "It's not funny. She's been doubling down on upper body workouts since she can't run or do leg days, and she was freaky strong to begin with."
Judy gave Nick her brightest smile. "You know you love me."
"Do I know that?" Giving Judy a skeptical look before breaking into a smile. "Yes. Yes I do. Karma knows, I do."
Mike shook his head. "And that, right there, is what convinced everyone that you two were going to be an item from day one."
Nick shrugged. "It's just the results of my foxy charms. You're lucky I didn't lure Lizz away from you." Flinching again. "Ouch! Dammit rabbit!" Rubbing his side with a smirk as Judy glared at him. "Anyway. So, you both need to stop with the musk mask immediately. In the morning, Mike, you're going to go up to Bogo's office after roll call. Just before you knock, text Lizz that you're going in. Lizz, you'll be out front waiting for that text. Take your time, but not too long. Two or three minutes, but you need to get to Bogo's office and burst in. Preferably as Mike is laying it on thick.
Mike, the reason you are there is that you need to talk to him about your partner. You'll need to play it by ear a bit, but he'll assume that you are talking about me. He'll probably ask you what I have done this time. The idea is to get him off guard. Just ignore any comments about me and start talking about how you have feelings for your partner, how they're such a beautiful mammal, that you're hopelessly in love with them and that you have confessed these feelings to them. Lay it on thick, but also keep it vague; let him think it is me, but never use a male or female pronoun."
Mike laughed. "Oh. That's good."
Lizz had a smirk on. "Okay, but what happens when I burst in the door?"
Nodding, Nick continued as Judy nibbled on his leftover burrito. "That's where it needs both of you. When you go in, close the door behind you and ignore Mike for the first few seconds. You also need to talk to him about your partner. How you're in love with him and carrying his kits. Bogo will be thinking that Mike has lost his mind and trying to make sense out of him being in love with me. Then you notice each other and embrace. You can get away with it because you're on Paternity, so not on duty. I'd encourage a good, uncomfortable for any other mammal in the room kiss, but only if you're up for it. But a hug at least, and you need to smell like each other, that way as the shock wears off on Bogo he'll get a whiff of you two and the pieces will fall into place. That's why, Mike, when you go in, you need to hit him hard and fast with the words so he never gets a chance to fully realize who you smell like until you give him the breather as you go to each other."
Mike blinked. "So that's it?"
"Mostly. Once he starts to recover, one or the other of you needs to hit him with the fact that you've been in a relationship for five years, mates for however long within that. Let him know that they are Mike's kits, or is it cubs with you guys? Pups? Anyway... You need him to know before they're born as you're going to be more open about it, off the clock. Make sure you emphasize off the clock and that you recognize that while on the clock and in uniform, you need to and will be totally professional, just as you have proven to be capable of for five years."
Judy sighed. "I'll warn you though. It'll take a few weeks to get fully used to being more open about it and keeping the PDA under control. Nick and I struggled a bit, and it only fed the rumors. True or not, it was hard. You've been at it longer, so you might have an easier time of it then we did at the start of our relationship."
Lizz nodded. "Yeah, it was hard those first few weeks. I had this stupid grin on my face, and so did he. We couldn't even look at each other for fear that everyone around us would know. Gods. I think we waited an extra month before we had sex the first time because of it."
Judy laughed. "Oh, our issues in that area were fear based, but that's for a more private setting."
Lizz blushed. "Oh, now we have to have a girls night so you can tell me all about foxy boy here."
"And I can hear all about your wolf. See how they compare."
Lizz snickered. "Oh yes! This must happen, and soon!"
Mike and Nick shared a worried look, Nick turning to Judy. "Okay, what now?"
Ignoring Nick, Judy rubbed her paws together. "Let's see. I know a few other girls that we could invite. Don't worry Lizz, two or three, and all in relationships. Carry for sure. She's a lynx who's mated to coyote. Maybe Joan."
"Oh, interesting. Yes. A small group. This is going to be so much fun."
"Yes! Now, as for the rest. Nick?"
Shaking his head, Nick suppressed a groan. "This is going to be like that time your sisters showed up and kitnapped you, isn't it?"
"They did not kitnap me. They snatched me into a Hopps family farm van, off the street as we were walking home, and took me for an unexpected night of drinking and storytelling."
"Kitnapping. If it hadn't been the Hopps logo on the van, and that I had recognized two of your sisters, I'd have called the entire ZPD down on them. I still called your parents freaking out, demanding to know what was going on." Looking over to Mike. "At least they let her call me. I was freaking out. Her parents said it was a typical thing when one of the sisters got into a relationship, they had not known that it was with me. It's how they found out though."
"Yeah... I wasn't expecting them to drive all the way to the city. Maybe show up at the apartment with alcohol, or the like. We were planning a trip home that weekend, and they decided not to wait."
"Your Dad made a few threats before he passed out. I give your mom credit, she took it pretty well, even if the grilling over Muzzeltime I got was tinged hostile."
Mike nodded. "I can imagine. I would freak out if Lizz's brothers did that. I probably wouldn't have had that restraint."
Nick nodded safely. "I reacted as I did because we had joked about what would happen that weekend, and such a thing was likely once we were in Bunnyborough.
Lizz stifled a laugh as Mike continued. "Okay, so getting back on track. What then? We tell Bogo, then what?"
"From there, you play it by ear. You tell him you want to stay partners. No need to admit to him that you know about us, he does and won't be able to turn your request down, so long as you keep the PDA off the clock because he's already set a precedent with us. He'll grumble, scowl, etc... The usual. But he needs to know what is between you, and how long it has been going on. The reality is, say what you want about Bogo, but he's not a stupid mammal, he might already know or have at least suspected.
Judy and I will be waiting for you guys at Ben's desk. The final question for you will be, how open you want to be as you walk out of his office. Do you give her a kiss before we head out on patrol or keep the stoic indifference you have perfected? Though, make sure you stop by Mammal Resources on the way down from Bogo's office and sign the paperwork. MR cannot tell anyone, but they need to know for leave purposes when the cubs are born."
They continued to discuss the plans for the following morning until well after the sun had gone down and a round of appetizers were ordered as a snack. Once they had everything ironed out, Judy and Lizz resolved to go directly from that into their girls night out, or rather day out, leaving Mike and Nick to their patrol. Planning to meet up for dinner at a different inter-friendly location.