Animals' Best Friend
A/N: I do not own anything other than my OCs. Everything else belongs to Disney.
Okay, so this one-shot was brought on by a review from Bananaboat2009 on one of my other stories (Crossing the Bridge) and while I meant to write it later, sometimes the muse wants what it wants. Bananaboat2009, I know it's a little different than what you had suggested but I hope you enjoy it!
Hope you all enjoy :D
Carlos sighed as he went on his walk. It was a relatively warm winter day in Auradon, warm enough that he could get by on his leather jacket and not feel cold. It was strange but, despite coming from the Isle, he liked his alone time. Well his alone time plus Dude of course. It wouldn't be right if his little buddy wasn't with him.
Don't get him wrong, he loved being with the others. But sometimes the Tourney team was a bit too raucous while Mal and Evie always went off in their own world. Meanwhile Ben was off being King and Jane was often busy assisting him. Meaning being alone was usually the default for Carlos.
However, as was previously stated, that was how he liked it. It allowed him the chance to really explore the grounds of Auradon Prep, now that they were accepted by most if not all of the school. Sure there were a few outliers but most everyone either left them alone or tried to be their friends since Mal was dating Ben.
Gods…Mal dating someone, he thought as he walked through the woods. Honestly I think that was something we never saw coming. Well, at least after the love spell was lifted.
Dude's barks broke through his thoughts, bringing Carlos back to the present.
"Dude?" Carlos called, sticking to the path. The fallen leaves on the ground were pretty but at the same time they disguised the roots that could have easily tripped him up.
Hey, he may have been accepted by the school but that didn't mean he just stopped being a VK after a month.
"Dude? Boy where are you?" Carlos called again, searching for the former campus mutt. The barking only got louder, which only served to worry Carlos. What if Dude was hurt? A sprained paw was one thing, Carlos could just carry him back to the school where they could bandage it up. But anything worse?
Thankfully, that wasn't the case as Carlos finally came across his furry friend. He was in a clearing, gently licking…a cat?
"Hey there," Carlos said softly, bending down to look at the feline. "What's wrong buddy?"
He was a black and white cat, which honestly amused Carlos a little. Trust him to be the one to find a black and white cat. But honestly, the black fur and the green eyes reminded him of Beelzebub, the cat he'd gotten at Evie's sixth birthday party. He honestly hoped that she was doing alright—and that his mom hadn't turned her into some sort of accessory.
Hey, she had to find fur where she could. The hyena cubs, children of Banzi, Shenzi and Ed, were lucky to not be in his 'baddie' bag so to speak. They definitely would have been raised purely for their fur and he'd go back to the Isle to see that his mother had a new hat or scarf or gloves.
He shook his head, trying to focus on the task at hand. "You lost little buddy? Oh you got a collar on? Let's see if you've got a name?"
Carlos slowly reached down to see if there was a tag on the blue and silver collar that would reveal the cat's name.
"Beth? Well that's kinda pretty," he said as he gently scratched the cat behind the ears. "Guess that means I can't call you buddy. But why are you out here all alone? It's kinda cold out here for a kitty as small as yourself."
It wasn't that the cat was unhealthy or skin and bones, but it was clear that it was still a kitten. Maybe a year old, fifteen months if Carlos was being generous on the estimate. Thankfully, it didn't look like the kitten was injured so Carlos would be able to pick her up easily.
Slowly grabbing the kitten by the scruff, Carlos put her into his jacket as it had started to get a bit colder with the sun starting to go down.
"Come on Dude," Carlos said and Dude barked in response, the two of them making their way out of the woods and toward the school. Ben might know who's kitten this was and if he didn't, he could reach out to Fairy Godmother and she would know.
Carlos paused as he heard a young girl call out. Was she looking for the same Beth he had in his arms?
It could be a coincidence, he thought. I mean Beth would be a fairly common name—hell that's a human's name. She could be calling for one of her friends.
"Beth! Here kitty! Come on, I've got a nice bowl of tuna for you!"
Beth perked up her head and mewed softly, her green eyes gleaming with delight.
Carlos turned around to see Kitty Charming running to him. After the fiasco that was Family Day, Carlos hadn't had a chance to really talk to the other Charming kids that were at Auradon Prep. It wasn't that he thought that they would react like their brother but when you were as small as he was, you didn't give potential enemies the chance to get you alone.
"Carlos, have you seen a kitten around here?" Kitty asked, brushing her strawberry blonde hair out of her face. "She's small, black and white fur with beautiful green eyes—"
Beth mewed again, poking her head out of Carlos' jacket and looked at her owner. Carlos watched as Kitty's eyes shone with relief.
"Oh Beth!" Kitty exclaimed, holding out her arms and Beth pawed at Carlos' jacket to be let out. Carlos couldn't help but smile as he handed the kitten to the Charming girl who held Beth close to her.
"Thank you for finding her Carlos," Kitty said. "She must have slipped out when Grace came back to the dorm. I've been searching the school all day. I was just about to try the Tourney locker room but the smell alone would have knocked anyone out."
"Yeah, it's not the most pleasant smelling of places," Carlos chuckled. "She was in the clearing, in the grove by the Tourney field. Dude's the one who found her actually."
Kitty smiled, bending down to pet Dude. "Oh thank you Dude. You're still a good boy aren't you?"
"You know him?"
"Dude would keep me company whenever weather was bad," Kitty told him. "There was nothing better on a cold winter night than a furry friend on the foot of my bed. Ben took over after Grace became my roommate this past year and it turned out that she was allergic to Dude."
"Oh that stinks…I'd hate to be allergic to Dude," Carlos frowned.
"Well Grace is allergic to Tramp too so we think she's just allergic to dogs in general," Kitty sighed. "Thank you by the way."
"You know. Not making the obvious joke about Kitty having a kitty."
Carlos shook his head. "Why would I make that joke? You're cool with the son of Cruella DeVil being around a dog after all."
"Well regardless, thank you," Kitty smiled. "I should get back to the dorm. I've got my Magical History essay to write."
"Mal mentioned something about that," Carlos said. "Hasn't that been assigned for the past couple of weeks?"
"Uh huh," Kitty nodded. "I procrastinate. Doesn't everyone?"
"Why do I get the feeling that having you around Mal would be a bad thing?"
"Oh please, Ben can tell you I've always been like this," Kitty chuckled. "Chad and Ben have been best friends since they've been babies. Meaning he's been around my whole life."
Carlos smiled slightly. "Well it was nice to see you Kitty and it was nice to meet you Beth."
The kitten in Kitty's hands meowed softly as she purred while Carlos scratched behind her ears.
"I think Beth would be offended if you didn't stop by once in a while to say hi," Kitty said with a slight smile. "See you around Carlos."
"You too," Carlos nodded and watched as she walked off. Shaking his head slightly, he looked down at Dude.
"You wanna go see if Jay's free?"
A small bark from his furry friend was all the answer Carlos needed.