A Trip to the Park
I don't know where I come up with some of this stuff but it's officially warped. Now if you don't mind, Dawn in a black spandex costume? I'll be in my bunk. Oh, and if you're under 18 and ignoring the FR18 rating, you might want to watch out for the last scene. Adult language and sexual themes.
Dawn stumbled a bit as she felt her body shrink further. Her visor declared she was two inches tall. "Almost there." She closed her eyes and concentrated. While Janet kept assuring her she'd get used to the changes in height and mass eventually, it still made Dawn a bit dizzy if she did it with her eyes open. Like she'd just done. She focused on making herself smaller yet and felt air brush past her face as she shrank downward again. Opening her eyes, she grinned. Half an inch. And on only the third try.
Rather annoyingly, however, Cassie could already shrink to any size on the first try. So could Janet, but Dawn expected that. She'd been the Wasp for longer than Dawn had been alive - either for real or her fictional age - and so that was only natural. Being shown up in front of Janet by someone younger than her was a bit irritating though.
There was something Dawn did better than her younger blonde counterpart, though. Mostly because Cassie couldn't fly. While Dawn had spent her entire existence up to that point without being able to fly, using the delicate insect wings that came with her shrunken form was quickly becoming as natural as walking to her.
Spreading them, she flapped and felt herself lifting off the ground slowly. Getting a bit more daring, she began racing back and forth across the room, using the giant legs of the Young Avengers as a bizarre sort of slalom course. After a few laps, Janet let out a whistle and Dawn stopped and floated on her back, looking around. A good distance away - five or six feet felt like forever when one was half an inch tall - Janet and Cassie were waiting for her in the same size-reduced state she was enjoying at the moment. Fluttering over to the pair, Dawn raised an eyebrow. "What's up?"
"Want to go to out to Central Park?" Janet looked back and forth between Cassie and Dawn. "I figured you could have a bit of flying fun and learn how to carry Cassie while there's someone here to catch her if you accidentally slip and drop her."
"Carry Cassie?" Dawn blinked. "Why would I want to do that?"
Cassie nodded in agreement. "Right there with you. Especially if there's potential dropping involved. No offense, Mrs. Pym, but I don't really want to see if you're still on top of your game enough to keep me from turning into a half inch splat on the pavement."
Janet sighed. "Right, I forget you're not definitely going to be a superhero, Dawn. I was just thinking of back when Hank was still Ant-Man and I used to have to fly him around when we were small, before he became Yellowjacket." She leaned in towards the girls and lowered her voice. "Okay, I'll be straight with you. Hank and Reed need to discuss something important and so you guys either are going to get kicked out or moved somewhere by the rest of the Fantastic Four and babysat until they're done. We're talking major important, as in even Sue and I are getting thrown out. I just figured we could go down to the park instead. Beats wandering around the Baxter Building or getting beaten by Johnny and Ben at some Playstation game…"
Tilting her head to the side, Dawn studied Janet intently. "Wow. Worried about my intellectual stimulation. That's downright maternal of you, Janet."
"Hey, shut up, I'm trying here." Janet sighed, running her fingers through her short auburn hair. "Listen, even for someone who's been in outer space and other realities, lesbian babies dropping in out of nowhere is weird. But then again, I've managed everything else life has thrown at me, so I don't see why I should run from some snarky teenage goth. So let's take it as it comes and see if we get along. And if we do, we'll figure out where to go from there."
Cassie coughed at that point and Dawn blushed a little as she realized their little family moment was playing out in front of a stranger. "So… flying Cassie? Do I just grab her hands or what?"
Lifting off the ground, Janet flitted forward and extended one hand. Dawn held hers out and Janet grabbed her wrist, using her free hand to wrap Dawn's fingers around her own wrist. "Like this. That way, if you do slip, you have some distance before things become a major problem. And you can always try to hang onto her hand if she seriously slips. Cassie, arms up."
"There's not going to be any slipping, though, right?" Cassie raised her arms obediently and stared up at the two hovering women. "Right?"
Dawn drifted over and grabbed Cassie's upraised arms like Janet had shown her. "Don't worry, I won't drop you by accident."
Blinking, Cassie tilted her head up so she could see Dawn. "Wait, does that mean you might drop me on purpose?" Dawn only smirked in reply and slowly began to gain altitude, raising Cassie off the ground. "Wait wait wait! There will be no dropping. Promise me no dropping! Dawn?!"
"So, what's up with those looks you keep giving Cassie?"
"I respectfully decline to answer on the grounds that I may incriminate myself?"
"Oh come on." Dawn looked over at Janet, pasting her best innocent expression on her face, but parenting was coming easily to the auburn-haired Avenger and she easily saw through it. "Seriously, you look at her the same way Hank looks at a new computer or Tony looks at… well, pretty much every woman in existence. Considering my love life is pretty much an endless loop of on and off with Hank and even the on-again moments aren't all sunshine and roses, I need to live vicariously. So spill."
Dawn broke the stare off with Janet and peered over the edge of the leaf they were sprawled out on, looking down at the subject of their conversation. Poor Cassie had fallen victim to one of the oldest tricks in the book: ice cream distraction. Janet had demonstrated a rather novel use for her powers: extending a growth field around Cassie's bowl of chocolate soft serve and causing it to expand in size along with her, before passing it off to Cassie and returning to normal size. The result was a giant bowl of ice cream that Cassie was happily devouring at the base of the tree, and some private time for Dawn and Janet to fly among the branches.
At least theoretically. In actuality, it was more like lay around and gossip time, as Dawn was discovering. "What? She's cute and I've decided that I'm going to be try-sexual." Janet gave her an odd look, causing Dawn to elaborate. "You know, I'll try anything once?"
"Thank you, Kim Cattrall."
"What? I learned all I needed to know about life and love from Sex and the City
. Well, that and the copious amounts of lesbian porn Willow left on the iBook she gave me. That woman has some really weird ideas when it comes to fun. I mean seriously, who wants something that big shoved down there? Oww much?" Sexuality itself wasn't something that Dawn really spent much time thinking about, to be honest. She was technically a glowing green ball of energy, so male, female, asexual tentacle monster… no matter what, she was dating outside her species. Unless she hooked up with Illyria, but that came with the fun incest schtick. So xenophilia or incest. Choices choices. Hmm. Would it still be an Oedipal Complex even though she was a she?
Shaking her head, Dawn pushed her brain back onto the rails. "And call it narcissism if you want, but I think I have the perfect body type: just on the slim side of average without being anorexic, and five foot seven is short enough that I'm not dwarfing a good chunk of the male population, but still tall enough to be taken seriously. Cassie shares that same body, although I think she's just a tiny bit smaller all the way around. Don't hold me to that, though; catsuits can be deceptive that way. Not that I have anything against them. Certainly caught my attention. Hey, maybe you know… who came up with the phrase 'leaves little to the imagination'? Because Cassie's costume is pretty tight and it still leaves plenty for me to imagine. Hell, seeing her in that getup is what got me imagining her naked in the first place."
There was a long moment of silence and then Dawn looked over just in time to watch Janet give a full body shudder. "Jesus Christ, Dawn. I may be new to this parenting thing, but even I know that's way, way too much information for a daughter to be sharing with her mother. Or father. Or whatever the heck I am. Just… wow."
Dawn could only smirk at Janet's reaction; that would teach her to stay out of Dawn's business. Or at least out of her love life. When she got one. Which would hopefully be soon. "Oh, and on the subject of Cassie's body…" Janet shuddered and opened her mouth but Dawn cut through her protest. "…if we really are as close as I think we are in shape and height, it means I can borrow from her wardrobe if I ever decide to repent and turn away from the Dark Side." Peering down at Cassie again, something occurred to Dawn. "I'm not quite sure how to go about wooing her, though. Trying to get her to experiment and let me be her first girl-on-girl experience will be tough enough, but I also have to deal with the jealousy factor I'm sure she's feeling. After all, I'm the girl her team is trying to bring in who has all her powers and more. That's gotta drive her up the wall."
"You mean like how I felt being on a team with Hank?" The dry rhetorical question made Dawn blush. "From the beginning, there was Hank and I… and then there was the period where Clint Barton was Goliath. And Hank's lab assistant Bill became Black Goliath. Scott Lang took over as Ant-Man, and this woman Rita was both a villain and a hero after stealing Hank's Yellowjacket costume. Erik Josten of the Thunderbolts and Cassie have both gotten a hold of Hank's chemicals from other people and gained powers. I just realized early on… and again when Rita stole Hank's costume to commit crimes with what were essentially 'my' powers… we may have the same powers, but we're different people still. And we each have our own things we can bring to the Avengers and to the rest of the world."
"Very enlightened of you." Ironically, it was very similar to the speech that she gave to the new Slayers that trickled into the school in Cleveland for training. "Hopefully Cassie can be convinced to see it that way, or any time she spends around Hank and his toys is going to be awkward." Pausing for a moment, Dawn eyed Janet. Hmm. Parents were supposed to help out and give advice. Buffy's idea of a good boyfriend included the phrase 'room temperature', so Dawn had never turned to her… maybe Janet would be more useful? Dawn opened her mouth and then closed it, deciding discretion was the better part of valor; Janet had made it clear she was uncomfortable discussing Dawn's interest in the Young Avenger and would probably be annoyed if Dawn broached the subject again right away. Shelving the topic for future discussion, Dawn cast about for an alternative. "So… since me wanting to jump Cassie's bones if apparently off-limits, what do you want to talk about? Is there any thing you want to ask me?"
Planting her elbows in the soft surface of the leaf, Janet rested her chin on her palms and thought about that for a moment. "Favorite color?"
Dawn snorted; as if the answer wasn't obvious from the clothes she'd been wearing before donning the catsuit. "Black."
"Billy Idol. Even if he did steal Spike's look."
That answer seemed to confuse Janet and she was silent for a long minute before coming up with another question to toss Dawn's ways. "Got any hobbies?"
"Does cooking count?" That earned her another strange look from Janet and Dawn shrugged defensively. "I literally live at my workplace. I don't get a lot of downtime and pretty much the only time I get to myself is when I'm in the kitchen, and that's only because the girls are scared of what I come up with. So… a hobby is something you do for fun and relaxation, right? That makes cooking a hobby of mine."
The pair fell silent for a moment, Janet probably wondering about Dawn's occupation as Dawn herself debated how much to tell her new parent about what she did for a living. As a founding member of the Avengers, Janet had undoubtedly dealt with demons before and likely knew about the Council from previous adventures. Still… on the off chance that she didn't… Dawn wondered if she should keep her mouth shut on the 'better safe than sorry' principle. It was probably for the best, she decided. They'd already had one awkward conversation revolving around her sexuality and were just now starting to reach a level of comfort conversing with each other; throwing 'hey, guess what, I belong to a demon-slaying organization' was a sure fire way to follow that one step forward with two Stature-sized steps back.
Failing to come up with an idea for a new conversation, Dawn decided to take a page from Janet's book and hopped to her feet. "Right then. You can hop on Facebook later and read a few of those stupid little questionnaires I filled out if you really want to know all sorts of random things about me. Let's do something fun, like giving The Pulse
a new superhero to speculate about. Besides, I've never been as tall as an apartment building before. Sounds like fun. And if I can control the growth, I'll never need a step-stool again."
Laughing, Janet climbed to her feet and followed obediently as Dawn spread her wings and dove over the edge, fluttering down towards Cassie's position at the base of the tree. "That's the spirit."
Dawn dropped to her knees as the world spun around her. Growing in size was just like undergoing a size reduction, at least when it came to the theory behind the shift… but shrinking hadn't caused this kind of reaction. "Oh Jesus Christ on a pogo stick, I think I'm going to be sick."
"Oh shit. Shit shit shit. This happened to Bill and Clint the first time they grew too." While Dawn was too busy staring at the grass while trying to keep her lunch down, she didn't have to look up to know what Janet was doing; the sudden whoosh of displaced air followed by a giant hand rubbing her back was enough to let her know that Janet had joined her and Cassie in the Hundred Foot Club. Janet's voice, now magnified by her size, rolled across the park as she bellowed at the crowd that had gathered around Dawn and Cassie. "Everybody get back! Clear the area!"
Dawn felt the tiny patter of feet against the ground as the assembled mass of gawkers turned at Janet's command and began stampeding away in hopes of reaching a safe distance. Dawn held it in as long as she could, knowing how trauma-inducingly nasty it would probably be to get puked on by a giant, but eventually even her cast iron stomach gave out and she retched noisily before showing the Central Park's visitors exactly how much vomit a hundred foot tall girl could produce.
And holy hell, Hooters chicken burned like a bitch on the way back up. Dawn blinked teary eyes as she stared down at the orange mess on the grass. Xander had warned her that her love for Three Mile Island Chicken would come back to haunt her someday… and he'd finally been proven right.
"Oh God." Cassie dropped to her knees beside Dawn, wrapping her arms around her midsection. "Please stop. Vomit makes me vomit. I'm not going to puke, I'm not going to puke." Dawn retched noisily and Cassie lost her own battle with her stomach, adding a giant-sized stomachful of partially digested ice cream to the mess.
Staring at the whiteboard hanging on the wall in front of her, Faith Lehane sighed noisily before letting the dry erase marker drop away, the black pen swinging back and forth on the piece of string she'd tied to one end to keep someone from walking off with it. There. The new slaying schedule was set. Everyone had a slot that would allow them sleep that didn't conflict with their chosen schooling or work activities, and by promoting Xan's chick to lead one of the squads, hopefully they could go the rest of the month without the two ending up downtown on indecent exposure charges.
Pshaw. Fat chance of that. Not that she blamed him, really. It'd taken him two years to get over Anya's death and move on. If she'd had to go two years without the touch of a man… well, actually, she was at the two and a half mark now thanks to her… circumstances… and she was ready to pop. She didn't mind the sex; she was all for sex. But as the only other 'responsible adult' around, she was getting real tired of being the one who had to go bail Xander and his girl out when they decided to pop in the graveyard they were patrolling, or in a back alley some place.
"Oh God! Oh fuck! Harder, Xander! Fuck my ass harder!"
Oh Lord. Faith flopped into her desk's chair, calling up Outlook and went day by day through the calendar, moving any meetings in Xander's office to the conference room or her place. She'd figure out who in-house had pissed her off enough to be stuck on cleaning duty later and set up a play date. But until that room was scrubbed down… with their senses, no Slayer was going to want to be shut up in that room.
"Oh yeah, that's it! Pull my hair, Xander! Pull it harder!"
Okay, Faith amended her thought, maybe one Slayer wouldn't mind. A knock on her door made her look away from the computer screen. "Yo." A pale, dark-haired girl poked her head in and Faith motioned for her to enter. "Hey, O. What's up?"
"Evenin', Faith. I was downstairs watching television with Spike and… well, saw something I thought you lot might want to know about." Ophelia Smythe winced before jerking a thumb at the wall. "I was going to tell Xander, but…"
"I'm gonna cum!"
"Yes! Do it! Cum in my ass, Xander!"
Faith sighed before walking over to the wall and pounding on it twice, hard but not hard enough to crack the drywall. Doing that once had been enough for her; she had no desire to listen to Xander complain about fixing it. "Hey! Some of us are trying to work here!" She was usually remarkably accepting of their antics, which was surprising since what they were doing was like eating ice cream in front of a person on a treadmill, but sometimes enough was enough. The neighboring office abruptly fell quiet and Faith turned back to Ophelia. "Alright, what's the what?"
Looking over at the wall, Ophelia muttered something about a 'bricklayer' before returning her attention to Faith. "Dawn's on television. Something with her being in Central Park, a hundred feet tall and vomming."
Faith blinked slowly. And then she blinked again. Even after seven years as a Slayer, she had not been expecting that one. "Show me."