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Rehabilitation has always been hard for Jason, even if he is the best in his line of work. His superior says because he's too soft for it, but he knows the real reason why. It's because he likes it too much, he likes when they send him the broken ones, the shifters that have been conditioned to be treated like the animals inside them.
~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~
He's sure he has the trust part of the exercise down. She is comfortable enough with him that she doesn't even pause when he turns his back to her in his quest to get his own meal. It doesn't take her long at all to demolish her own meal, finishing it up and then settling on her knees, licking the back of her hand to wipe her face.
He takes his time with his own meal, taking bites of the deliberately underdone steak and licking up the blood before it can drip down his chin. She crawls closer to him on the table, tail wagging curiously behind her, ears perked back.
He wonders if she has to beg for scraps this way during her captivity. She makes a soft inquiring noise that garners his attention.
"Yes, Kitten?" he asks, looking up. Then, he chuckles. She has mayonnaise smeared over her chin and cheek, pieces of salmon stuck on her nose. "Look at you," he says, pinching her chin between his forefinger and thumb and tilting her head up. "You've made such a mess of yourself, Kitten." He draws her forward without thinking and licks over her cheek and chin, cleaning her up the way wolves do, the flat of his tongue running over her cheek and closed eye. She tastes sweet, the mayo clinging to her skin, with an undertone of her own sweet scent and the clean taste of the salad side dish his chef had prepared for her.
She leans into his touch eagerly, purring as he grooms her with his tongue.
"There you go," he says, wiping his own saliva from her cheek fondly. He's going about this all the wrong ways deliberately, encouraging her animal instincts by piling his own on top of it.
Tomorrow, he thinks to himself. He will start the program tomorrow. Today, he will enjoy having her like this, mostly human with a mind that is more animal. She crawls off the table once he is done with grooming her face and curls up at his feet, smelling heavily of contentment.