Looking 'round like it's storming | Gaia

Lightning split the sky, its ghastly white brightness setting the treetops aglow with false daylight. With ears flat to her skull, Daisy Flight twisted her ash-splashed side to shield the dry core of the nursery from the wet. Heavy thumps of liquid drummed along the mud behind her, their frosty impacts blurring into the storm's roaring ambience. Frankly, she didn't know why she put up with it. A few sunrises ago the queen would have nestled deep into the warmth and security of the deepest corner of the nursery- dry nests be damned. The small shape of Gaia before her however, had given her a change of heart. Sitting by the rain, for a kit? The huff that left her jaws was half-hearted, she was glad to protect the woven flowers in the bramble eaves... and Gaia. Another sigh, definitely her.

The black-ribboned youngster seemed troubled by the storm. Bowing her head so as to level her gaze with her, Daisy Flight let out an encouraging purr. "Storms might be loud and scary, but they're doing a good job for the forest. The grass grows greener after the rain slows." In the twoleg place, rain was only a miserable affair. It made climbing harder and plunged the streets into a state of shallow torrents. It had been another charm of this life, the way the land seemed to spring back from each coming challenge.

Giving the kit a fierce lick to her ear, she changed topic. "You came from the twoleg place, didn't you? I used to live there as well. What was your old home like?" Tone steady, even in the wake of the growling echo of thunder, Daisy Flight listened patiently for her response. There was nothing to do but wait it out, but perhaps they could distract each other from its dramatic, squalling performance.

With every bright flashing of light and rumble of thunder, a swift flinch followed. The girl huddled in on herself, nervous gaze flicking about. It was her first night ever outside of her twoleg nest, and it was terrifying. Rain threatened to pour into the warm den, but Daisy Flight had moved to block the entrance. If Gaia ducked low enough, the queen even blocked out most of the light from the spooky flashes. When the calico purred encouraging words to her, she met her gaze and blinked, trying to stop the shivering in her form. I didn't know rain could do that. That was nice...so even if it sounded loud and terrifying, the storm outside was helping. It was good, no matter how badly the kit wished it would stop.

A tongue was swiped across her ear, and the action drew the tortoiseshell closer, wanting more. The grooming of a mother was something she hadn't received in moons. She could hardly remember what her own mother even looked like. Scooting closer, the tiny girl peered up at Daisy with round eyes and mewed in a squeaky, unsure voice, "It was loud. Like the storm." She recalled the booming voice of the older twoleg, how angry he would seem. "The kits were nice, though," She added on softly, eyes falling to the ground in thought. They would stroke her fur and feed her. She liked them. She didn't like their parents, as much.


A loud crack of thunder split the air suddenly, causing every hair on the kit's body to stand on end. She jolted, letting out a high-pitched yowl with her paws scrambling forward. In an instant, she was burying her face into the calico's chest, huddling between her forelegs as she trembled. Fluffed-out tail lashing furiously, she whispered in a panic, "W-Was that the storm, t-t-too?"
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A low, thoughtful 'tsk' left her maw as Gaia confirmed her assumptions. The blocky twoleg nests were infested with the creatures and she had always found them undesirable. The queen knew many however, who attested to their kind nature. And now apparently, even their kits were tolerable. "Twolegs can't seem to separate themselves from noise, can they?" Teasing, a slight smile slipped across her grey-splashed face. "I'm glad you got on with the little ones." Daisy Flight found herself relieved that she had an enjoyable life before finding herself in the forest.

Abruptly, another terrible roar tore through the air. Gaia's sudden huddling between her mismatched forepaws surprised her, and the queen let out an undecipherable utterance. Frozen in uncertainty her wide, alpine eyes swept along the clementine-banded kit, landing of her fear-feathered tail. The sight softened her shoulders and the calico once more lowered her head. Bundling up Gaia beneath her white throat, she let her purr rumble through them both. "Yes. That's the storm, letting us know its displeasure. Don't worry, it might do it again but the crashes can't hurt us." The sweetness in her tone was unfamiliar, though not so difficult to rally. It might be best to tackle the topic of lightning another day- Daisy Flight wasn't sure how to handle the terror it might bring.
A soothing voice cuts through the storm, and her body seems to be rumbling with a purr. It's not hers, and Gaia quickly realizes it belongs to Daisy Flight. Somewhere, deep within her memories, she is reminded of a flame-colored mother. Her purr sounded a lot like Daisy Flight's. Her voice, though, she couldn't remember. Now, when she thinks of what a mother should sound like, she hears the patched she-cat next to her.

The splotched kit relaxes slightly, tucking her chin to her chest to peek out with a single yellow eye. For a cat who finds it so hard to trust, she trusts the words being spoken to her. The storms can't hurt them. She can live with that knowledge quite well, actually. A shuddering breath leaves her and she melts into the queen's fluffy chest, soothed by her close touch and the rumbling still echoing through her young bones. Soon enough, her breathing has evened out. Her orange chin is now resting upon Daisy's foreleg, wide eyes staring uncertainly at the rounded belly that she seemed to be trying to lay around. "Are you going to have kits, soon?" She murmurs quietly.


"Hm?" Daisy's thoughts crystallised, pulled from the drifting comfort she felt at Gaia's chin on her leg. "I suppose I will. It's my first time, you know. Truthfully I don't know what to expect- my mother didn't teach me anything." The vulnerability slipped out freely and for a moment she wished it hadn't. But she was the start of her little family, wasn't she? Under her care, her protection. Ignoring her inexperience would only lead to trouble down the line.

The queen was a little glad to have Gaia, as an older sister, for her coming kits. It meant she wouldn't be left alone, surrounded by the tiny menances- something she was sure they'd be. I was, in my youth, Daisy Flight chuckled to herself. "How... how do you feel about having siblings?" The question was coloured with a subtle worry. Maybe she wouldn't want to be around them, after such a noisy environment with the twolegs. Chill crept up her neck, the curtains of water still lashing the forest behind them.
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The tortoiseshell flicks her ears thoughtfully at the question, her eyes still resting on the queen's plump belly. To be honest, she isn't sure how she might take to having little siblings around. Now that she's gotten a taste of undivided love and attention, Gaia isn't eager to give it up. She doesn't want to share Daisy Flight. Will she still be groomed? Will she still be comforted when she's scared? But she's old enough to understand that there's nothing that can turn around the expected kits. They will arrive, and she's going to need to be prepared. So, sucking in a breath, she whispers, "I'll try and be a good sister for them." It's the best answer she can come up with right now.

The tortoiseshell's response set a soft smile on her face, though it was a little bittersweet. That was so- considerate, of her to say. "Don't worry, there won't be any tests. And if you ever need any time away from them, I'm sure we can sort something out for you." Having had no known siblings herself, Daisyflight could only imagine how she might have reacted to being surrounded by them all of a sudden.

Sighing a similar sigh to Gaia, the queen shifted her weight. Nosing a dry piece of moss beside her head into the perfect position beneath her shoulder, she shimmied to rest against it. Behind them, the storm still hammered on, though the rolling drum of thunder was waning. Maintaining the comfortable purr that warmed them, she closed her eyes. "If you can, you should get some sleep. Often sleeping through the weather is the best thing to do. I'll ensure we don't get swept away- it'll all be okay little one." Her closing statement weighed heavy with reassurance, a comment more on their situation at large rather than that evening alone. They'd just have to work it out together.
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