“Happy birthday,” I told him.
He was staring at some sheets of paper in his pen and just grunted a little. Or maybe he sneezed, because he sneezes a lot and it sounds like the buzzing of the restraint bars on an old-fashioned roller coaster.
“Um … and many more?”
He got up on all fours and hopped to the edge of the pen. Then he stood up on his hind legs, using the pen to brace his forelegs, looked at me, and rolled his head to the side while yawning, and sticking his tongue out. He left his tongue sticking out — the shape of rabbit mouths means this comes out from one side, and tilted — dropped back to the ground, ran back to his paper, and flopped over on his side, exposing his bright white belly in a flurry of adorability.
“What was that?” I had to know.
He pulled his tongue back in. “Homework.”
“You have homework?”
“Internet course in advanced cute.” I tried to peek at his paper, but it was printed out in rabbit, but I had some idea now why we keep running out of printer paper too soon.
“You’re taking cute classes?”
“I take my responsibilities around here seriously.” And he licked a paw, to groom the side of his head, while flopped out like that, and reaching for the end of his ears.
“Excellent work,” I admitted. “Good luck.”
He splayed his front paw’s fingers out and licked between them. “Thanks!”