White Dog cleared her throat after the ruckus and said, "I guess the Big Boys have figured out that Santa is still catching up on his sleep and won't be watching for awhile." Despite a long active but peaceful afternoon walk, both YoYoMa and Taiko had been testy toward each other since returning.
The lip curling and mumbled threats were quieted only be my command and soon ramped up to road blocking each other as they moved around the house. When the game of "He's My Dad"..."No, He's MY Dad" escalated to macho boxing, both were sent out of the kitchen where Steve was working. He put up the baby gate to keep them out but they pushed and checked each other at the gate until tempers flared and teeth were bared.
"ENOUGH!" I said in my now-you've-made-momma-mad voice. Yo immediately ran over to lick my hand and Taiko whined. "No, you boys need some time to be alone and think. Time Out for both of you!" They know that term, the entire White Dog Army does, and they do not like it. Eskies are very social and to be separated is a serious thing. Steve put Taiko in the sunroom at the front, and YoYoMa was sentenced to the office. We ignored the whimpers and drama from both.
Bella sneaked over to each to offer a moment of condolence and White Dog visited each to deliver a stern lecture about the rules of no fighting in the house and of respecting each other. Then they were left alone to think for half an hour.
YoYoMa was released first and ran to the front door to gloat. "Do NOT!" I told him and he came to sit at my side. Taiko came in and buried his head in Steve's lap. "I think you boys owe each other an apology," Steve told him.
Taiko took a step toward Yo who immediately stood up. "You, too," I told him. "It is not a matter of Santa watching, it is a matter of knowing what you two did was mean...and kindness rules here." The two boys closed the space between them and I took a deep breath.
YoYoMa looked at White Dog; she gave a short bark. Both boys touched muzzles and quickly stepped apart.