Stiles and Derek broke up months ago because of Derek’s penchant for self-sacrifice. But maybe, just maybe, they can work things out.
Stiles’ favorite place to walk his dog, Leia, was the memorial park nestled deep in the heart of Beacon Hills.
There were jogging paths around the perimeter of the park itself, perfect for days when they were both in the mood to run for a bit. It was smoothly paved and well maintained enough that he never had to worry about Leia scratching up her paws as she waddled alongside him in short bursts.
Many other people walking their dogs at the park favored the jogging trail as well, giving them plenty of opportunities to meet new people and their pets. With how sociable both Stiles and Leia were, it was wonderful, never at a loss for some friendly conversation or a walking partner.
There was a group of older women who frequented the park almost every day, visiting to see each other and gossip over some tea from the local cafe, occasionally walking the jogging trail. They were especially fond of Stiles, who had officially dubbed them the Golden Girls, and, of course, Leia as well, always greeting them with wide smiles and offers to set Stiles up with one of their grandkids.
On days when Stiles just felt like going for a leisurely stroll, he would forego the jogging trail in favor of the more secluded, shady paths that led into the outskirts of the preserve. Those trails were little more than dirt paths worn from foot traffic, winding their ways around ancient oak trees and pine saplings.
Those paths were best for days when it was especially warm, the sun beating down relentlessly as the humidity level climbed higher and higher. The thick canopies of the trees blotted out the sun, providing the perfect amount of shade as they wandered through the woods, Leia bounding through the underbrush.
Other days they skipped walking altogether and spent some time in the lush green fields in the center of the park. There they did everything from play fetch with Leia’s favorite tennis ball to practice some of the tricks Stiles had taught her.
Leia was especially popular with little kids, Stiles always bombarded with requests from parents and children alike to pet her or play with her. Stiles was always amenable and Leia basked in the attention, preening as she was lavished with sweet coos and delicious treats. She was an entertainer at heart, performing her best tricks when she had a crowd to ooh and aah over her.
She would even tag along with the kids to the playground area of the park, acting like just another one of the crew as she hopped after the kids, barking happily as she did. The kids were always entertained by her antics whether it be her skidding down the slide on her belly or begging for someone to push her in one of the baby swings.
When there were no little kids around to fawn over her, Leia made do with fraternizing with the other dogs at the park. She was quite popular with them as well, a little alpha leading around dogs twice, or even three times, her size.
There were a few regulars who were especially enamored with her, including a harlequin Great Dane who towered over all the other dogs in the park yet followed Leia around like a little lost puppy. The others were a rough looking Rottweiler, aptly named Brutus, and a floppy-eared little black lab named Ace, both of whom let Leia lead them into all sorts of mischief.
Leia herself was a sable and white Pembroke Welsh corgi, standing at a respectable eleven and a half inches at the shoulder and weighing no more than thirty pounds. Yet despite her short stature, or maybe because of it, she was as fearless as they came, always carrying herself like a little queen as she flounced around the park.
She took after Derek in that respect, an underdog if there ever was one. After all, Derek was the one who had gotten her for Stiles, a present for their three month anniversary.
This is Iris Kane. She’s a harlequin Great Dane and she she’s actually relatively small for her size. She likes the words “eat,” “potty,” and especially her name when you say it really soft and sweet. She barks at the flies in the window and likes to beat up on her little brother, Ares (picture to follow). She’s a galoot and my girlfriend and I are so in love with her.