Here we are! Final instalment...! Hope you enjoy, and thanks so much for all your friendly and helpful reviews! Do let me know if any more Bruno/Matty stuff would appeal further down the line.

14th February 2014. At about midnight.

Rosalee squeezed Monroe's hand as they made their way down the final leg of the endless stretch of sidewalk that would eventually get them to Nick's new place on Montrose Avenue (or Monstrous Avenue as it became when it was raining or one desperately needed a piss). He did wonder whether it was necessary for Nick to move quite so far into the boondocks (or quite so close to him, more to the point) but at least it made for a very local stop-off on the way home from a night out. And he did get that Nick wouldn't want to stay in that huge suburbian pile on his own anymore.

Rosalee squeezed his hand again, bringing him back to the world of the present. "It was nice to see Bud and Janie, wasn't it?"

Monroe smiled painfully. "It would have been nice to have seen them for a slightly... shorter time. I mean, it's valentine's night for Christ's sake! Did they really have to sit down with us? It was Matty-this, Matty-that, MattyMattyMatty..."

Rosalee chuckled. "Honey, they just got their adoption papers through. They're so happy they don't know where to put themselves. They're probably stopping random strangers and dogs to tell them about Matty. They're probably calling the... Federal Siegbarste-Sighting hotline to tell them about Matty!"

"And that's fine, I'm really happy for them. I just wish Bud would do it somewhere else!"

"He's a nice guy, really. And he's patient! It's not many Dads who could cope with a kid who needs a three-hour siesta every day during the middle of the construction season."

"He's a small doses guy, that's what he is." It had become exasperating over the last year to have to increasingly share Nick with Bud. To a degree, he knew this was not fair. Nick was not his pet Grimm. He was an independent, athletic, well-balanced guy who needed a broom to rid his path of fainting teenage Wesen girls every morning, and yet still had plenty of time for him. No-one owned Nick. But there was this tiny yet growing part of Monroe that just wanted to sneak up on Bud on a dark night and roar in his face "I SAW HIM FIRST!" and scare him so bad his whiskers fell off his face. It occurred to him that he was doing a less good job of suppressing his jealous streak than he was his Wolfish tendencies. Matty was cute – really cute – and possibly a little over-clever in that feline 'I can run rings round you' sort of way. But he wasn't a patch on Bruno. Even if he could build a Lego riverside mansion in under 22 minutes.

Rosie dragged him up Nick's steps and held her thumb on the apartment intercom. "Need I remind you that the first thing you did when Bruno was born – out of pure joy or otherwise – was to strip off and run naked through the forest? It was nice of the cops to recognise the extenuating circumstances and let you out the same day! Don't talk to me about Bud's over-enthusiasm, ok? Right, we're here."

The overproud parent thing was bugging Monroe, now. "Rosie... do you think we do that... constant-talk-about-the-children thing with Bruno as much as Bud does with Matty?"

"Yes!" Nick volunteered through the intercom. "And Rosie, no-one needs to be reminded about Monroe streaking. Let yourselves up, Bruno and I are working out."

Nick lay back on the couch with Bruno between his hands – man he was small, must be the fox in him – and power lifted him up above his head. Where was he? Oh yeah – "25...26...27..." In between, Bruno squeaked cheerfully down at him, all red-haired, huge-eyed and bewhiskered, dribbling down onto the sore spot on his hairline, and 'tickling' his hands with nails that desperately needed a cut. In between counting, Nick matched every squeak with a growl, making Bruno squeak again. God, if he'd known it would be this easy to make Bruno happy four hours earlier...

He'd had the good grace to stay asleep and cuddle into his shoulder for the first two hours, making him look reasonably irresistible to Juliette. He'd had the good grace to go down and stay down while they had dinner: purely ravioli-on-the-lap-in-the-lounge stuff. He thought it unwise to eat up at the table with wine on Valentine's day. They were still really nervous friends: making progress, sure, but there was still the occasional long silence while they sifted through lists of things they shouldn't say, and they could never seem to say goodbye properly, crashing noses in a determination not to accidentally meet lips.

They'd finally got chatting in a more normal way -and Bruno was gold here, producing natural talking material - but then completely shat (literally) on all the brownie points he'd earned by doing the most appalling butt patty known to man. She was very gracious about helping him to clear it up. Then she'd left.

"...But it was something, eh, little buddy? She hugged me this time. Crap and all."

He looked up, left and saw Monroe staring down at him, horrified. "You're blogging? While using my son as a deadweight?"

Nick managed to shrug without breaking his stride. "He's enjoying it. And he's eight pounds, which makes him perfect for endurance exercise. 41...42..."

"Give him here."

Nick swung off the couch and gently passed the squeaking bundle into Monroe's arms. "He's fine. All your stuff's packed up, by the way."

Monroe appeared to be checking his son for damage in a way that Nick found... infuriating. "You did read the checklist, right? The part where it says 'must be asleep by seven on the dot'?"

"Yeah, and then he woke up! And actually, about that 'checklist'..." Nick walked over to the coffee table, picked up the ring-bound manual and tossed it lightly to Rosie, who flushed puce with embarrassment.

"Oh Monny, you didn't!"

"Uh, he did. And there's a few things I'd like to mention about this 'checklist'. First - anything that that comes with an index needs to be given to a guy to read in advance. That sound fair enough? Good. Second, there were a few key omissions."

Monroe looked vaguely guilty. "Such as?"

"The average land-to-airspeed of a Fuschblad hairball." Nick gestured the raw spot on his temple meaningfully. "And not a word of warning about sleep-roaring – good job I wasn't carrying the ravioli, I can tell you. Or about early-years vulpine scent-marking tactics." He indicated the pile of unclean tee-shirts in the wash basket.

Rosie clipped Monroe upside the head and shook her head with mortification. "Nick, I'm SO sorry..."

Monroe looked like he was pursing his lips together to keep himself from laughing, and thus getting smacked in the face.

Nick walked over and took his old friend by the shoulders. "Monroe, can I ask you something? Is our favour tab about even now? Are we officially done with 'vengeance will be mine, etc etc?'"

"Yeahhhh... I think you're off the hook."

"Good. 'Cause next time you guys ask me a favour on a night I'm seeing Juliette, I'm running. Ok?"

Mandy – thanks so much for following and commenting reviewing throughout. I'm just sorry that you've been in and out as a guest, as I haven't been able to thank you through PM.