A Fox's Tale

By Joshua Fox


Susan Felin, Debbye Squirrel, Cindy Lapine, Clarence Skunk, Chris Foxx, Rodney Lapine and Wanda the Vixen are copyright Chris Yost. Zig Zag and Max Black Rabbit are copyright Max Black Rabbit. Sabrina Mustelidae, Tabitha Mustelidae, Tammy Vixen, Sheila Vixen, Tor the Dog and Amy Squirrel are copyright Eric Schwartz. Lilian Bartholomew, James Sheppard, Rhonda Badger and Tamara Rabbit are copyright James Bruner. Marvin Badger is copyright James Bruner after a description by Chris Yost. Robert Fale, Joshua Fox, Jim Leard, Ralph Dix, Shawna Coon, Kris Coon, John Anderson, Aaron Cole, Wilde Cat and Tara Nadine are copyright Joshua Fox. Blue Wolfe, Kyrin Cat and Kittiara Seng are copyright themselves.

Legal Notice: This story is copyright 2000 by Joshua Fox. This story may not be sold or used for commercial profit in any form or fashion. This story may not be modified in any way. This story may not be posted on a mirror site or any Internet site without the written permission of the author. This story may not be distributed on print, magnetic, electrical or political mediums.

Permission to use characters that are copyright other individuals was obtained prior to the appearance of said characters.

This is an independent work of fiction with no connection whatsoever to any other stories or works by anyone else and does not imply any connection to the before-said sources. As far as these sources are concerned, this story doesn't exist. They disavow any knowledge and do not officially sanction the events in the story.


Chapter 4-World Turned Upside Down

Josh tossed and turned in bed. Murmuring into his pillow, he raised his head slowly and gave a weary glance over to the alarm clock. Two-thirty. Josh had been trying to get some sleep for almost five hours now. Finally, he just gave up and rose, nearly stumbling over his own feet as he did so. Josh padded into the living room and flipped on the lights, knowing he wasn't going to get any sleep tonight. He was still in a small state of shock from Susan's message. He pressed the play button on his answering machine for the umpteenth time that night, using his other paw to rub the tiredness from his eyes. Josh sat on the arm of his couch and listened to Susan's voice intently. He still couldn't believe it. This was totally outside the norm.

Why in the world would she call me? He furrowed his brow in thought.

He hadn't thought Susan seemed like the type who just called guys up that she met in an ice cream shop. So why would she call him up out of the blue like this? They had just met three days ago. They didn't even know anything about one another. Josh feverishly contemplated this, trying to sort everything out. He sighed and looked out the window. It was still dark; not a trace of sunlight. As the clock on the wall caught Josh's attention he remembered why.

Well, I did say I wanted to speak with her a little more. I guess this is my chance. Josh mused, folding his arms.

He blinked several times and glanced over at the door to his bedroom, debating whether or not to give sleep another try. Josh decided against it, knowing he would never get a bit of sleep as long as this was on his mind. Instead, he thought about everything he was supposed to do that day. He would definitely have to talk to Blue about this. Rob too, seeing as Rob had the most dating experience of anyone he knew. Josh yawned as got up and walked over to the shelf next to his desk. He scanned over the different books he had collected over the years, looking for something to keep him occupied until the dawn. He finally selected his copy of Thomas More's Utopia and sat down at his desk.




Josh's eyes opened slowly in the light-filled room. He picked his head up from the surface of the desk, blinking as he looked around. Seeing that the sun was up, Josh realized that he must have dozed off. He blinked several more times, trying to adjust to the morning light and collecting his thoughts as he did so. His first thought was of Susan and how her message had kept him up last night. Josh gave a soft chuckle and smiled as he thought about it. Finally being brought fully awake, he gave a glance over at the wallclock.

"OH SHOOT!" Josh realized he had overslept. I'm late for class!

Josh leaped over the couch and bounded into his bedroom. Quickly throwing on any article of clothing he could find, he sped back out of the bedroom and came within centimeters of running smack into the door of his apartment. Josh snatched his keys up in his paw and flew out the door and down the stairs, taking almost an entire flight at a time. As he got into his car, he calculated how long it would take him to make to the building his class was in. Judging by the distance and the time it would take to find a parking space, he determined that there was still a chance, however slight, of making it before he was declared late. Josh started the route to the campus and just hoped that traffic would be light.




Kyrin sat on her usual bench in the park admiring the scenery. It was a beautiful early autumn day, perfect to just sit back and admire nature's beauty. She chuckled as she recalled her husband yelling at his frozen up computer the night before. Kris was a very patient and wonderful man, but he just couldn't handle when inanimate objects disagreed with him. That was one of the many things Kyrin loved about him, something that had made her laugh before they had gotten married. Kyrin put down her sketchbook for a second and took a good long look at the sky. It was a magnificent shade of blue without a cloud in sight. The kind of day she loved to spend in the park. She looked down and gazed at the landscape around her. As she glanced down the path she saw the familiar form of a black rabbit coming down the path in her direction. Kyrin smiled as she recognized who it was and waved.

"Good morning, Max!" Kyrin yelled out as he approached where she was.

"Hey, Kyre," Max smiled and sat down next to her. "How you doing?"

"I'm doing great. I don't think you can be anything but great on a day like this," Kyrin swept her paw over the scenery, as if to emphasize her point.

"Can't argue with you there. It's great to be outside on a day like this," Max took in a deep breath and held it there, almost like he was trying to savor it. "Not too warm, not too cold and a cloudless sky to boot."

Kyrin nodded in silent agreement as she continued to take in the day. She turned to Max and gave him a quick hug, catching him completely off guard.

Max chuckled after she had let go of him. "What was that for?"

"Just wanted to say thank you again for letting me do a ceramic of your character. The hits on my website have doubled since I put a picture of it up," Kyrin smiled as big as she could.

"Kyrin, it's nothing. I should be thanking you for thinking enough of my work to do it in the first place," Max stated honestly, remembering when she had first asked him earlier that year. "You know, my offer still stands."

Kyrin rolled her eyes and shook her head. "Max, I am NOT going to let you pay me for doing that figurine. I should be paying you for using your character."

Max looked at her and shrugged. "What for? You're the one doing all the work, not me."

Kyrin couldn't help roll her eyes again. Max had a quiet logic that could always glide him through a conversation easily and almost always left him on top when all was said and done.

"Well, one way or another I won't accept anything for something that I had so much fun doing," Kyrin told him firmly, folding her arms.

Max knew then and there that that was the end of that discussion and coolly submitted. The two friends chatted for a little while, apparently getting lost in their conversation, because when Max looked at his watch he sadly realized that he had to go. "As much as I enjoy talking to you," he slowly rose from the bench. "I've got less than an hour before class starts."

A puzzled look flashed across Kyrin's muzzle. "Class? You teach, too?"

Max chuckled and shook his head. "No, I don't teach. I take an art class over at the college."

"You're taking an art class?" Kyrin's eyes widened when she realized he wasn't joking. "That's like Einstein going to summerschool for physics!"

Max laughed out loud at that. "Kyrin, stop flattering me. You're every bit as good as I am," Max looked back down at his watch and realized he'd better get moving. "Kyrin, I would love to sit here and argue over which one of us is best, but I really have to get going."

Kyrin stood up and gave Max a big hug and a peck on the cheek. "I'll see you later, schoolboy!"

Max laughed and made his way down the walkway to the parking lot.

Kyrin waved to him as he left and sighed, returning to her sketches.




Josh ran across the parking lot at top speed and bounded across the lawn. He kept at maximum velocity as he reached the building he was looking for and bolted past two students who were coming through the door. He continued at the same pace down the hallway, skidding to a stop outside the door to his classroom. Josh lunged into the classroom just his name was called.

"Here!" he yelled as he moved quickly around the first row and scrambled to find a seat.

The fox that taught the class was watching Josh as he dodged through the rows of chairs before finally sitting down. "Good of you to join us, Mr. Fox. Have any trouble finding the place?"

"No way, Mr. A. I overslept this morning," Josh explained, feeling very uncomfortable as the center of attention.

"Perhaps you'd like us to reschedule the class to later on in the day. Would that correspond with your schedule more?" Mr. Anderson was still watching Josh as he moved behind his desk, knowing that this was making him extremely uncomfortable.

Josh decided the only way he could get out of this situation and still save face was to change the mood and fast. "Oh no, I couldn't ask you to do that. Of course, if you could make it end a little bit earlier I'd really appreciate it."

This got the class going pretty well; even Mr. Anderson couldn't help but crack a smile at Josh's comment. "You're a funny guy, Mr. Fox. What say you stay after class and we can discuss a comedy routine."

The class gave a collective 'ooh' at this. Josh sighed and responded. "No problem, Mr. Anderson."

"Good to hear it," Mr. Anderson turned to the rest of the class. "Now if Mr. Fox has nothing else to say, we'll get started."




Susan was having a hard time paying attention in class; even more than usual. What was more, for once it wasn't because of her Clique pals. She hadn't even talked to them the entire class. Susan was so distracted she didn't even notice when Mr. Canis was staring right at her.

"Ms. Felin? I'm not boring you, am I?" Mr. Canis' question jarred Susan back to reality.

Susan shook herself out of thought and realized she had zoned out again. "Sorry about that, Mr. Canis. You're not boring me at all," she tried explaining when she realized the entire class was looking at her. "I'm just a little more distracted today than usual."

Mr. Canis did happen to notice that Susan wasn't her usual self. He was used to her talking to the other Clique members during his class, but the usual overtone of giggles hadn't been heard today; at the very least not nearly as strong as usual. She just seemed to be staring off into space. Canis noted this because it was very uncharacteristic behavior for Susan.

"Please try to stay focused until the class is over," Mr. Canis requested, noticing her apparent embarrassment before returning to the day's lesson plan.

Susan felt unusually embarrassed just for being caught by Mr. Canis. It was the third time he had addressed her while she was deep in thought. For some reason, she hadn't stopped thinking about Josh ever since she left that message on his machine. Susan had felt nervous before she had left it; she even thought out what she was going to say before the call. She remembered how the sound of his voice made her feel when the machine picked up. There was something about the casual flow of it that took her nervousness immediately away.

Susan could feel herself slipping back into deep thought. She wanted to pay attention, but she just couldn't keep focused. As she fell back into her own mind, something occurred to her. Why had she been nervous about a phone call? Was this the way guys feel when they call a girl up? It was the first time she had ever called a guy, that much was true, but she didn't think that was it. She pondered over that and so many other things about the past few day's events as Mr. Canis continued on with the lesson.




Josh sat back in his seat, watching the other students file out of the classroom. When the last had gone, he popped out of his seat and walked over to door, looked both ways from the small window in the middle, and closed it; pulling the shade down as well. Mr. Anderson was standing near his desk, watching Josh's movements.

"Well, Mr. Fox, ready to discuss the routine?" he asked as Josh walked over to the table.

Josh chuckled and sat down on it. "You enjoy saying that, don't you, John?"

Mr. Anderson gave a good belly laugh and sat down next to him. "Not as much as I pretend to, Josh," he admitted as he opened up his thermos and took a drink. "Reminds me of when we were back in high school. You always wrote my campaign speeches when I ran for class president and organized little surprises that made me sound a lot more than I was."

Josh looked at him with a slightly confused look on his face. "Sound more like what, John?"

"You know," John pointed to him. "You could always find different ways to make me seem like whatever was needed. It always worked, too," John scanned through the rows of empty seats before them. "I still wish I knew how you were able to do that."

Josh looked at him with an all-knowing smile. "It's no big thing. Just a matter of knowing what people want to hear and what they need to hear. And don't be so down on yourself. Firstly, you've got what it takes. If you didn't, nothing I could do for you would get you here," Josh waved his paw towards the area of the room. "Come on, you're only two years older than I am and you're teaching a college class. How good is that?"

Josh continued on before John could answer. "Secondly, I may have helped you out in high school, but you're responsible for where you are. I swear your self-esteem is worse than mine."

A chuckle was Josh's reward for the reassurance. "I remember being so dang nervous going into the first day of class. But, low and behold, I walk in, sit down and see you coming in through the door with the other students," John laughed when he heard himself say that. "It's so weird to think that you're my student after you taught me so much in high school."

Josh nodded. "I'll admit, I was surprised to see you sitting at your desk there on the first day."

"It's kind of ironic. History was my worst subject in high school until you tutored me in it," John reminisced and gave another chuckle. "I remember how pissed I was. A junior being tutored by a freshman."

Josh folded his arms and thought back. "Yeah. I remember the first session we had. You looked like you were about ready to tear me apart."

John nodded. "I pretty much was," he paused for a moment and looked up. "Until I realized you were a head and a half taller than I was and my torso was about the size of your paw."

They both had a hearty laugh at that. Josh looked John up and down. He looked older than he actually was; which was probably a good thing since he wasn't much older than most of his students. There was still about the same difference in height between them, though Josh still had a good seven inches over John.

Josh chuckled as he looked over John's clothes. "I see you're doing everything you can to look more like a teacher," Josh pointed to the tweed jacket sporting leather elbow patches that John was wearing.

"And I see you're just the opposite," John replied, pointing back towards the old tattered jacket that Josh was wearing. "You've been wearing this thing since we were in high school. How do you even get it on?"

"Don't. I invented this new product called Jacket-in-a-Can. Just take the spray and apply it to your fur so that it appears as though you're wearing a one," Josh was good at these kinds of jokes and kept a straight face through the entire 'Sales pitch.' "And it washes right out of your fur at the end of the day," Josh finally cracked up when he saw John's expression. John joined in when he realized Josh was joking around. It didn't matter what Josh said; he just had a way of speaking that made you believe anything that came out of his mouth.

"I can't believe you actually took what I was saying seriously!" Josh worked out through his laughter.

John calmed down enough to speak clearly. "You know dang well you've always been able to convince anyone of anything." They both settled down a little so that they could continue the conversation. "You should be a car salesman."

"Been there, hated that," Josh replied with a thought of when he had worked as one. "It just got so boring. Blah blah blah, this model is excellent, blah blah blah, four year lease, blah blah blah."

"I guess I can see your point," John nodded in agreement just as a thought popped into his head. "Hey, why were you late today? You're usually the first one in here."

"I overslept this morning. Was up late last night and I just couldn't get to sleep," Josh explained, looking at him.

"I figured as much," John replied. "You were really zoned out today. It looked like you were daydreaming for most of the time. You must have really been wiped."

Josh hesitated before his response. He wasn't sure if he should tell John exactly what it was he was daydreaming about. Josh had been thinking about Susan for almost the entire class. So much so that he didn't even notice that class was dismissed until half the students had gone.

"Well, at least I didn't miss anything," he jokingly responded after deciding against telling John the details of his distraction.

John almost snorted at that. "Like it would have made a difference, Wise Guy. You've forgotten more about history and philosophy than most people will ever know. You should try teaching the class one day."

John continued when Josh didn't respond. "Why are you taking this course anyway? You could ace the final exam in ten minutes."

Josh sighed and leaned back slightly. "This is what I know. I'm still trying to figure out what I want to do with my life and I didn't want to end up in the middle of a semester not giving a dang about what the class was about."

"That I can understand," John nodded, recalling his own dilemma a few years back when he got out of high school.

Josh suddenly realized Rob was supposed to pick him up. He took a look at his watch and saw he was late. "Boy, I'm having a real problem being on time today. I was supposed to meet Rob in the parking lot fifteen minutes ago."

"Say hi to Rat-Boy for me," John laughed as Josh stood up. Josh laughed out loud too, Rat-Boy being a nickname from his high-school days that would make Rob livid if he ever heard it again.

"You got it," Josh started towards the door but then hesitated and shook his head. "I just wish we weren't taking his car."

John looked more than slightly confused. "Why is that?"

"How would you like riding in a car with a Remember-my-name-you'll-be-screaming-it-later bumper sticker?" Josh asked him after he turned around.

"Well, that's Rob," John stated before taking another sip from his thermos. "I'll see you around."

"See you later," Josh said as he walked out the door.




Blue was sitting outside on a bench, looking over his sketches when Rob and Josh pulled up.

"Hey baby!" Josh yelled at him from the back seat. "You want to make ten bucks the hard way?"

Blue put his paws on his hips and gave his best sultry look. "Sorry, boys, but I think I' m a little bit much for you to handle."

Josh and Blue both burst out laughing when neither one could keep a straight face. Blue was still trying to get himself to stop when he hopped into the passenger's side and put on his seatbelt.

The whole time this was going on, Rob was just sitting in the driver's side, chuckling. "You know, Josh," Rob began as he pulled out of the college parking lot. "For someone who claims to be straight, you do that WAY too well."

Josh chuckled at that. "What can I say, I'm good at impressions."

"Yeah? Well then do an impression of someone who can get us into the locker room," Rob kidded, driving through the intersection just before the light changed.

"Alas, there are limitations to even my powers," Josh jokingly admitted before Rob hit a bump, causing Josh's head hit the top of the car, much to the apparent amusement of Blue.

"Hey, Josh, you got the tickets, right?" Rob asked, trying to remember which street the arena was on.

Josh rubbed his head and took three tickets from his pocket, holding them up. "You bet that furry behind of yours. Three seats, ringside."

"Yea! I can't wait to get there," Blue told him, his tail trying to twitch under him in excitement.

Josh gave a questioning look over to Blue. "Forgive me, Blue, but mind if I ask a question?"

"What is it?" Blue turned around in his seat to face Josh.

"It's just that," Josh started, "I didn't really take you for the professional wrestling type."

Blue laughed. "That's not a question, but I'll answer it anyway. Think about it for a moment," Blue looked Josh straight in the eye. "A bunch of big, sexy guys in tights engaging each other in a rough manner. What's not to like?"

While Rob was waiting for the light to turn, he slowly turned to look at Blue. " I don't think I want to go anymore," he said nervously as the light turned and he drove on.

Josh started laughing hysterically when he heard that. "Rob, calm down and get over yourself," Josh put his paw reassuringly on Rob's shoulder. "I'm sure Blue will promise to behave, won't you, Blue?"

Blue put his hand over his heart. "I solemnly swear to behave myself at the arena tonight," Blue said in his most official sounding voice. "Except if that big lion is wrestling, in which case all bets are off," he added quickly.

Josh raised his eyes skyward and shook his head, chuckling. "I'm beginning to think I really CAN'T take you anywhere," he joked as they continued along their way.




Two beers, three sodas, six hotdogs, two buckets of nachos, an hour of waiting and two hours of brutality later; the three amigos walked from the exit of the arena to the parking lot. Each was talking about what match they had liked the most.

"That was great!" Blue bounced as they were going along. "That lion can really put on a show!"

Josh looked over at him with a wry smile. "Remind me to check the card next time I get tickets to one of these things."

Blue turned to Josh. "What do you mean? I behaved myself just like I said!"

"Blue, you took off your shirt and threw it at him!" Josh reminded him as they began searching for Rob's car. "I had to buy you a new one so they wouldn't throw us out of there!".

"I don't see the problem with that," Blue replied innocently. "Besides, I like this shirt better anyway," Blue looked down at his new black muscle-shirt. It had the wrestling federation's logo on the back and a picture of his favorite lion wrestler across the front. Blue turned back to Josh, giving his best innocent look and batting his eyes. "You aren't mad at me, are you, Josh?"

"You know I can't stay angry at you," Josh conceded. "But you throw any more clothing at wrestlers and next time, no ice cream!" Josh added with a chuckle.

"Okay," Blue gave in reluctantly. "But only if you do that impression I like so much."

"C'mon," Josh started as he caught sight of the car. He pointed it out and they began walking over to it. "I'm tired of doing that one."

"Oh come on and just do it already," Rob chimed in when they got to the car. "I like seeing it, too. Plus you know he's going to drive us both nuts until you do it and I can't stand seeing him beg."

Blue looked offended at first but his muzzle gave way to one of his famous evil grins. "That's funny; most of the other guys I know would just love to see me beg."

Rob instantly cringed at Blue's comment and began to shudder. "Josh, would you mind doing the dang impression before I start freaking out here?"

"Okay, okay, fine," Josh pulled a pair of dark sunglasses out of his pocket and put them on, then the souvenir-wrestling belt Rob had gotten for his nephew, draping it over his shoulder.

"Finally," he began his impression with a slow gaze out across the parking lot. "The Fox... has come back.... to Colombus."

Josh continued with a long, dramatic pause, followed by a swift jerk of his neck towards the arena. "The Fox, the furry's champion, is going to smack down that lowly lion, drag his mangy behind all over the ring and then beat him over that shaggy head of his with his own tail!"

Rob and Blue were both chuckling already. They both had to admit Josh was good at what he did. Josh continued on after another dramatic pause. "And while The Fox is smacking him around like the pathetic little plush toy that he is, the billions," Josh gave another dramatic pause and took in a deep breath. "And billions of the Fox's fans, all over the world, will be cheering his name."

His two fans responded by chanting, "Foxy, Foxy, Foxy!"

Josh paused again, being a crucial part of the impression, and slowly raised his left eyebrow. He threw his head back and shouted in a crowd-pleasing fashion, "If ya' smeeeeeeeeeeeeellllllllllllll, what The Fox is cookin'!"

Rob and Blue gave a big round of applause and Blue gave a whistle as Josh removed his sunglasses and tossed the belt on top of the car.

"You ready?" Josh asked, looking over at them.

Blue and Rob responded once more by chanting, "Foxy, Foxy, Foxy!"

Fox chuckled and raised one finger. "Uh-uh-uh, Sheil's the only one who calls me that, remember?" Josh leaned against the side of Rob's Geo. "Well? You set?"

"Okay, I guess we're set," Rob moved around to the driver's side and unlocked the door.

"Hold up, Rob," Josh put his paw up. "You sure you didn't have any beer while we were in there?"

"Why are you asking me that?" Rob toyed with his keys as he tried to find the right one to start the car.

Josh looked Rob straight in the eyes. "Rob, open your mouth, let me smell your breath."

"No way!" Rob said bluntly, furrowing his eyebrows.

"Rob, either I do it or Blue does," Josh nodded in Blue's direction.

"And when I do it, I use my tongue," Blue grinned evilly at Rob.

"You win," Rob threw Josh the keys and came around to the passenger's side without a single protest.

Josh began to go around to the driver's side, but stopped and thought for a moment. He wanted to talk to them about Susan's message.

"Guys," he turned to them. "Can I talk to you about something?"

"Sure, Josh," Blue replied with obvious curiosity. "What about?"

Josh tried thinking of the right way to put it. "It's something that happened recently. I still can hardly believe it myself-,"

"Oh, no," Rob interrupted, placing his face in his paws. "Not you, too! Is everyone in the world turning gay or what?"

"First off, NO! I'm not talking about anything like THAT," Josh said after he rolled his eyes. "And I'll tell you just what I told Blue over and over and over again: I am not gay!"

Rob looked slightly sheepish and waited for what Josh had to say as Blue's muzzle sported somewhat of a smirk.

"I got a message on my answering machine last night," Josh started before he was interrupted again, this time by Blue.

"Wow! That's amazing!" Blue jumped in. "Sorry about that. Just joshing you." Blue's smirk grew a little bit more as Josh continued.

"The surprising thing is-," Josh paused and looked back and forth between the two of them, as if waiting for them to interrupt. "That the message was from a lioness I met on Friday."

Rob's face lit up at this news. "Way to go my fox-friend!" Rob gave Josh a slap on the back. "Only two days and she calls you up! Beautiful!" Rob definitely wanted to know more about this. "So what's her name?"

"Well," Josh began, a little bit surprised at Rob's reaction. "Her name is Susan Felin."

Rob's body froze as he stared at Josh, obviously in a state of total and complete disbelief. "Her name is what?"

"I said her name is-," Josh managed before Rob interrupted him again.

"I heard you the first time!" Rob dropped to his knees and started bowing. "You are my new hero! I am not worthy!"

"Rob, what in the name of the president's jockeys are you doing?" Josh asked, not having any clue about what was going on.

Rob stood up and looked right into Josh's eyes. "You don't even know, do you?"

"Know what?" Josh was pretty sure Rob had lost his mind.

"Susan Felin is the definition of BGOC!" Rob continued when Josh still looked confused. "Big Girl On Campus?"

"Oh," Josh acknowledged. "So?"

A look of clear exasperation shot across Rob's face. "So what? So what? Are you nuts? She is the most popular girl in my college! I've been trying to get her to go out with me for a year now!" Rob paused to take a breath before he continued. "And SHE asked YOU out? I am founding a new religion that completely revolves around this event!"

Josh was surprised, to say the least, at Rob's comments but he really needed to get his point across. "Rob, Blue," Josh looked back and forth between the two of them. "You both know I've never been on a date before. The problem is that," Josh paused for a moment. "I don't know what to do. I'm completely in the dark here and," he hesitated and then continued. "I need your help. I don't want to come off like some goofy kid here."

Rob finally got a serious look on his face. This was an even bigger surprise than what Josh had said before. As long as he and Josh had known each other, Josh had never asked for help with anything. And by anything, he meant ANYTHING. Rob just stood there for a moment, not quite sure what to say.

Blue sniffled and pretended to wipe a tear from his eye. "Oh, Robbie," Blue began, putting his paw to his mouth and turning to him. "Our little fox is growing up."

This at least made Josh chuckle, taking off a bit of the tension. "So what do you say, guys. Can you help me out?"

Rob and Blue looked at one another, grinned and nodded before turning back to Josh. "You got it, Josh. My dating expertise is here at your disposal," Rob was already laying out plans in his head for Josh.

"And I am taking you shopping and making you buy something that doesn't look like it's seen combat," Blue added with another grin.

"Thanks, guys," Josh said as he got into the driver's side and closed the door. "I really do appreciate this."

"Don't be thanking us yet, my fox-friend," Rob told him as he and Blue got in the car after him. "Thank us when you have the best dang time of your life!"

"This is going to be fun!" Blue bounced up and down in his seat as they pulled out of the parking lot.


End of Chapter 4