Sinnett was a mouse. Red-haired and freckled, wiry and slim, smiling and bright-eyed – but mouse. Being engaged in one of the most dangerous sciences in the whole Society, he nevertheless managed to remain quiet and inconspicuous. He loved his work and those people around him – and they probably loved and appreciated him. Only had grown up in a poor and dirty district of London, since childhood accustomed to giving the first places to children more stronger and noble, Sinnett behaved himself impossibly silent. As if he was not absent. As if he did not exist. As if the tears that he sometimes cried over the deceased family weren't his; and all that pain did not belong to him either.
Pennebrygg was louder. His movements were sharper and keener, almost like he himself was one of those machines he was building. He was also cursedly clever and devilishly charming. And with Sinnett they met often. At first, the main theme was a prosthesis. Pennebrygg could spend hours studying this amazing device, admiring and polishing it to shine. Then the presence of each other became an inexplicable need. With Pennebrygg you could be silent. This silence did not put pressure on your shoulders, as it was with other Lodgers – as if they were all expecting something from you. In the middle of the fiery, mechanic-filled madness, this silence was sleepy-soothing.
One day Pennebrygg saw Sinnett crying. Perhaps then he had understood what to do. Perhaps he knew this all his life. He walked over, lightly held the scientist's shoulders and pulled him into a kiss. To the impossibility calm and easy – like all their relationship, like everything that was before. Then he stepped back and murmured somewhere into Sinnett's thin lips:
“You're not alone.”
And the red-headed mouse smiled.