Even cozier now than he had been on the couch, Mao was quickly well on his way down into another nap. Face snuggled into the blankets, paws still kneading away, he drifted. But then… The ‘sweet dreams’ was an unexpected road bump. He blinked one eye open and peered beyond the petting hand to Vaughn’s peaceful face. When was the last time he had been bid sweet dreams? And why, after the initial flush of warmth hearing it gave him, did he feel weirdly guilty? Was it because he had already mapped out a whole plan to milk Vaughn’s gullible, generous nature for all it was worth? He didn’t like to feel guilty. And he didn’t like to have second thoughts.
Unsettled, it took him some time to actually fall asleep, and it did not last very long. A few hours later, just before dawn, and he was wide awake. He wiggled out from under Vaughn’s hand and creeped along the bed to sit and watch the man sleep, his eyes seeming to glow faintly in the dark. Getting a good look at him now, Mao thought the guy was actually kind of cute. Yeah. He was a fan of the scruff.
Somehow, staying until morning did not feel like an option. Mao was restless, and that little seed of guilt would surely sprout if he stuck around until Vaughn woke up and started being all nice and charming again. He needed some distance to think about things, rebuild his walls and feel more like himself and not like a cuddly kitten hungry for pets and affection. The way he’d been acting was totally embarrassing.
So, with one last thoughtful look at his sleeping host, Mao slunk away like a vampire as the first rays of morning light broke over the horizon. He wondered if he’d be missed, wondered if Vaughn would be disappointed to wake up alone… But mostly he wondered if he had the strength of will to wait a night or two before coming back.