1965-02-17 - Cuddlebuns and Stinkweasels
Summary: Danielle shows Amanda one of the cuddlier uses of her powers.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
amanda-sefton danielle 

The weather is almost pleasant. The sun is out, with a few clouds lazily drifting high above. The temperature is just on the lower edge of comfortable. It's the sort of day that Danielle usually prefers for sweaty work or physical training. Today, however, she has a different task. Dressed in comfortably snug jeans and a thin, loose linen blouse, she has clomped roughly a mile or so further out from the circus, to get away from most of the noise and bustle even on the edges of the City.

She sits cross-legged on a low, mostly flat rock, her eyes closed and her breathing steady. It almost looks like meditation. Except for the minor quibble that she doesn't meditate. In the quiet clearing around her rock, several rabbits and birds busy themselves with rabbity and birdy things, seemingly ignoring the human in their midst.

At some point in the Circus' stay, Amanda acquired several white jacket for a variety of weather. Today it's slightly warmer, so the jacket isn't quite like her winter one. It still has a hood though. Amanda seems to really like hoods. Especially when they can hide half her face. She only heads out when Dani is gone for longer than she usually is. Then it's a case of teleporting to the usual spots until she stumbles across her girlfriend. The 'fwoosh' of her teleport is, sadly, kind of a dead giveaway that she's arrived.

At the sudden 'fwoosh', a few of the birds fling themselves skywards. One of the rabbits sprints for cover. The rest of the small animals tense….. but stay put, alertly watchful. Dani's closed eyes tighten slightly, then slowly relax again. As she relaxes, so do the little critters. "Easy does it, honey," she speaks calmly, quietly, without opening her eyes. "Come on over, but no quick motions, yeah? I want to show you something groovy."

Sloooooowly Amanda walks forward, trying not to make any sudden movements. "Something groovy?" she murmurs. "You're not going to start doing something like in that movie we saw last weekend, are you?"

That brings a slight grin to Dani's lips, and she retorts, "That's a thought……. but no, no. Okay. Hold still for a moment?" She falls silent, then exhales slowly. After a few seconds, one grey rabbit shufflehops up to Amanda's feet and starts to curiously sniff at the woman's toes. A few heartbeats later, a couple more of the rabbits, brown and white, join the first. Eventually, all but a couple of stragglers out on the edges of the clearing are gathering unusually close to the two humans. One even hops up onto the rock and settles itself into the 'nest' of Dani's crossed legs. Dani's brow is glistening slightly with a hint of sweat, suggesting she's behind the odd behavior somehow.

Amanda Sefton stares down at the rabbit for a long moment. "How are you doing this?" She could try to do something similar, but that would involve her own magic. And -that- would be blatantly obvious when she worked it. What with the waving arms and words that don't sound like words.

Danielle smiles and opens her eyes just a bit, bringing a fingertip to lightly tease behind 'her' rabbit's big floppy ears. "Practice," she quips, then explains, "It's part of my empathic abilities. I'm basically sending what hippies call 'positive vibes' out to the critters. Letting them feel safe and relaxed. It's a lot easier with one animal at a time, but I'm trying to stretch it out."

Amanda Sefton geeeeeeently bends down and pets the rabbit. Slowly, carefully. "That's… amazing," she murmurs. "I didn't think empathy could be used on animals." Of course, what little she knows of the ability (thanks to Dani) made her understand it would only work on humans.

The bunny twitches its wee nose and leans slightly into the petting. The other rabbits resume rabbiting, mostly grooming or munching on grass, just hanging out. Dani tries her best to keep doing whatever it is she's doing, while also continuing to talk with her girlfriend, "I try not to do it often," she admits, "Messing with Maheo's children can be.. problematic." She pauses, then adds, "Maheo is the Cheyenne name for what white people usually call the 'Great Spirit' or 'Sky Chief'. I don't /like/ fucking up a human's emotional state, but I'll do it when I have to. Doing that to animals, except in a dire emergency, just feels… more wrong."

Out of respect for Dani, and a desire to use the right word (as necessary), Amanda says 'Maheo' a few times. Close enough. Cheyenne has some sounds in it that she's not used to, between Romani and German and English. But she gets it. "Because they can't really resist you, like a person can?"

Danielle nods lightly, "Animals don't have willpower, in the same sense we do. They have instinct and emotion." She softly pets the rabbit on her lap a bit longer, then gradually begins to release the 'warm happy' field. "They were made to fill particular roles, and the temptation would be to pull them out of those roles for my own benefit. What I'm doing with these little guys isn't changing them at all. I'm just enhancing their natural sense of 'safe' and 'calm'. It would be a different thing if I coaxed a fox out into the middle of this. I could..probably.. control things, but.. it wouldn't be natural or right."

Eventually, Amanda lets the rabbit go do rabbit things, and carefully weaves her way through the bunnies to take a seat beside Dani. "That would feel a little unnatural to me too," she agrees with a nod. "Do you only try for rabbits?"

Little by little, the rabbits wander off, back to their usual routine. In a matter of minutes, there's almost no sign there were any bunnies in the area at all. Danielle stretches and twists tired shoulders. "Not always. I'll come out a ways, find a comfortable place to sit, then open up my feelings to the general area. Sometimes it takes me a while to 'find' what sort of animals are nearby. Mammals tend to be easiest to connect with. Reptiles are very tricky. Once I know 'who', I can figure out 'what' their current emotional state is. Hungry, curious, playful, whatever. Then I try to enhance or soothe that emotion. Last time, I found a couple of weasels on the hunt."

Amanda Sefton furrows her brow. "…I don't even know what weasels would hunt. Mice?" She guesses. She can't really picture weasels hunting. It's odd. "Or do they eat seeds or something?"

"Mice, birds.. They usually hunt smaller rodents," Danielle explains easily. "Somehow we humans convinced ourselves that weasels and ferrets and the like are all cute and cuddly, but they're actually very very carnivorous little bastards. And they can get very intensely focused while hunting, which is a weird sensation to 'ride'." She leans back on her hands, reclining slightly on the rock. "There aren't many 'big' predators this close to civilization, but the smaller ones actually help keep us from being overrun in rabbits and mice and god knows what."

"One of the clowns had a pet weasel," Amanda notes. "For a while. It… stunk." She actually could not get over how stinky it was. "He told me that was normal." It is also really weird to think of something so 'cute' as an animal that is normally very smelly!

Danielle laughs and reaches over to slip a couple of fingers into Amanda's hood and tease out a strand of dark hair. "Well, if I remember my biology class correctly, weasels and their kin are along the same family branch as skunks… Cousins, at least. So yeah, normal is probably right." Super gross, but normal.

Amanda Sefton wrinkles her nose. "The same family as skunks? That explains a lot." Gross! She cannot stand the smell of skunk. Something about it just sends a shiver down her spine. Okay, that's the skunk's defense system and not the skunk itself, but still!

Danielle grins at the other girl's reaction, and shrugs a shoulder easily, "It's not their fault. And big stinks carry a lot of oomph in the animal world." She lifts her gaze skywards briefly, musing, "Maybe I'll tell you my people's story of how the skunk got her stink one of these nights before bed. That's romantic, right?"

Amanda Sefton turns her head and stares at Dani, and then bursts into giggles. "Your people have a story for that? I would love to hear it." It's not romantic, but it did make Amanda smile. And she is really interested in the Cheyenne. … Mostly because of Dani, admittedly. So she's happy when things are shared.

Danielle returns that grin, and untangles her legs before getting to her feet. "Black Eagle made damned sure I knew our people's oral traditions. You'd be astonished how many of them are fables about animals." She slaps her hands against the denim clinging snug to her rump, then offers one hand to Amanda. "Some of them are terribly dumb, but some are pretty good."

Amanda Sefton accepts the help up, and twines fingers with Dani's hand, leaning into her. "What's your favourite?" She's told Dani Roma stories before. Various tales. It's only fair that she get to hear some Cheyenne ones too, right? "Back home, then?"

"Back home, indeed," Danielle agrees. "My favorites would be the ones that involve Old Man Coyote. There's something about a good trickster that makes for a fun story." She hugs Amanda close, fingers twined. After the pair teleport back home, the small clearing soon returns to normal, the local wildlife soon forgetting about the intruders.

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