Arron pushed the door shut against the winter wind and leaned against it with a sigh as he latched it.

What a miserable day. Just walking home from the Laughing Dog had robbed him of most of the warmth he’d gained from their excellent stew.

At least it was only the weather against him. The rest of the day had been satisfying enough; he could turn in to rest in the knowledge that the day had not been wasted.

He put another few logs on the fire, and with that, the day was done. He didn’t bother lighting the lamp in his bedroom; as long as he’d lived here, the firelight from the main room was more than enough for him to strip down and slide under the furs.

If he had lit the lamp, perhaps he’d have noticed the one who murmured in his ear, “Not even a greeting? Why, Arron, I’m hurt.”

A twitch of shock pushed him back against a warm, furry body; then, as recognition sank in, he was only too happy to lean back against it more gently. “Tavash! I – I thought you were still in Rekton!”

“Thankfully, I was finally able to clear my name there,” that smooth voice murmured, a cool, damp nose pressing against the skin on Arron’s neck. “Mmn. I just arrived a short time ago. I missed you, Arron.”

The firm warmth against his rear certainly made that plain. Arron laughed, reaching back to press his hand against Tavash’s rump, pulling him in a little closer. “It’s a good night to have company,” he confessed. “I could use a little more warmth.”

Under the furs, a feathery wing curled over Arron’s side. “Warmth,” Tavash breathed, “I can provide. From the inside out, hmm?”

It was so easy. The Kethran’s shaft was copiously slick and tapered almost to a point; he opened Arron’s body and slid in almost effortlessly. And he was, indeed, very warm.

The swell of his knot was a modest thing, but it was enough to reinforce the feeling of his presence there.

They had little need for more than that – Arron had had a busy day, and when Tavash confessed that the journey had been long and tiring, Arron was quite willing to say, “Just stay here a while, then. You feel nice.”

Which didn’t keep Tavash from slipping a hand down to Arron’s manhood, or Arron from rising to a full and quivery arousal under the stimulation. But that was all they needed. There’d be time later for a fiercer coupling, for the hot pulse of seed passing between them.

For now, having his lover inside him, cradling his length, was all Arron needed.

He closed his eyes, listening to the gentle rhythm of Tavash’s breath as the Kethran sank into slumber, savouring the warmth of that breath on his skin; then, with a smile on his lips, he let himself drift off to sleep in turn.