Lost in Otterspace

Lavender Heights 
The last remains of the changed faded from Yujin’s body with the final patch of fur covering his left leg. He threw up onto the cold stones of the alleyway, his tiny body scrunching with the movement. A thick coat of fur protected him from the worst of the wind, but he still shivered with the aftermath of the anxiety attack. He pressed back against the bricks of some building and curled up among the remains of his shirt. Sleep pressed in one him from all sides, but the immediate danger of being out in the open and the constant pangs of hunger kept him awake.
He didn’t know where he was or how to get home, not to mention it would be much harder as an otter. A whine rattled its way out of his throat. But there were no other otters here to help him, no younger brother to come pick him up, not even a phone to call for help. He was all alone.

Ah. The gaybourhood.

Full of rainbows and bright colours and neon signs and just general happiness to be who you were.

Jupiter felt at home here.

Then again he also felt at home everywhere else in Cordova. Lavender Heights just felt warmer and softer than any place else and if it weren’t for the fact that it was owned by Vampires if the gossip at the salon was to be believed, then he might think about moving his business to the land of drag bars.

He was stuck in traffic on his way home, taking in the scenery of his second favourite neighbourhood in Cordova (as he really couldn't call anywhere other than home his favourite). His fingers tapping away along the leather wheel of his car to the beat of music, humming and singing random lyrics as he knew them. His phone buzzed on the seat beside him and he checked to make sure that he was still stuck in traffic before picking it up.

His sister. She could wait until he wasn't driving. He put his phone back into the cup holder and upon looking back up at the road, something moving caught his eye. He tilted his head to the side and his eyes focused on the large sized animal. A further squint of his eyes made him actually stop drumming his fingers against the wheel. Was that. A fucking otter?

Yujin had crawled to the entrance of the alleyway to look out and see if the roads were busy, or if he stood a chance of trying to retrace his steps home. But the sheer amount of cars had him draw back. Was it rush hour?
He slumped, his long tail curling around in front of his feet. How was he going to get home? Waiting here seemed a poor choice, it wasn't normal to see an otter in the middle of town and he was bound to get spotted sooner or later.
Dejected Yujin stuck his head back out so he could properly spot a time to begin moving. There were just so many people. He wasn't very large in otter form, only three and a half feet, but still he was bound to get noticed if he tried to weave through people's feet. Maybe he should wait, just a little longer for traffic to calm down.

Jupiter kept both eyes locked on the... yeah, that was definitely an otter, as it tried to figure out whether or not to get into traffic. Was this guy/girl an actual idiot? Why would it run into traffic? That would be the worst press day of all time for Otters. Almost as bad as the Tiger and that Jaguar that ran through various parts of Cordova. It would send people into a panic.

He sighed deeply and undid his seatbelt so that he could lean across the passenger seat and open the door. He whistled to get the Otters attention and muttered under his breath quietly. "You better not fucking wreck my car."

A car door opened from out on the street and a man whistled at him from inside. Yujin frowned, what did the man want? It seemed like a chance to escape. Maybe the man just wanted to get a closer look at him? Well better then sticking around here. He darted forward scrambling up the hot metal of the car and onto the leather seat. The smell of the man was odd, strange, not quiet right but not a were. Hopefully that meant the man had just picked him up to oogle, or worst case the man had not meant for him to scramble into the car and things would get ugly. Either way he was in the car now.

Jupiter eyed the Otter as it got into the front seat and regretted it immediately. If someone looked into his car they'd be like "ooh, look a dog!" and then they'd look closer and be like "what the fuck, mate?" He sighed. "Get down, and don;t fuck up my car, mate."

He heard a honk behind him and Jupiter raised a hand to let the driver he was moving before following the flow of traffic that was thankfully now moving. He drove for a little while until he was on the side streets of a neighbourhood and parked his vehicle, turning to look at the Otter with a perplexed look on his face. Could it talk?

"Animal, Vegetable, or Mineral?"

As the car pulled away, the sense of danger faded along with the control Yujin had as the change fully settled in. The otter sniffed around and slipped down onto the floor pressing it's paws against the carpet. It wasn't mud and there were no clams to find. He had the sense to look up when the man asked a question. Animal, mineral, vegetable? He tilted his head in confusion and gave an answering yip.
The cabin was full of interesting smells and he lifted up on his hind legs to get a better sniff of the glove box. When no food presented itself he dropped back down and began to scour along the seat.

Alright so it couldn't talk, but he supposed that it did understand him. He sighed deeply. What was his plan now that there was an otter in his car? Take it home? His landlord would have a field day.

"Tu parles francais?"

He sighed at himself and rubbed his forehead. This was a very one sided conversation.

"I guess I can take you to Kit's place..." He started the car again and opened the window for the Otter, bringing up the address on the GPS with a flash of gold in his eyes.

"How do you like Ravenswood, ever been there?"

New smells flooded in as the window rolled down. The otter clambered up onto the seat again and lifted it's head to get a better sniff. The scent of the river drifted in and he began to make squeaking sounds in excitement. River meant fish and clams. He turned back to the man and continued his squeaking, imploring. Food, fish, clams, food. Didn't the man understand. His tail thumped against the seat and he prodded the material with a paw.

"Hey hey hey hey!" He said loudly. "Watch the upholstery or I'll close the window!" What if this was just a very large Otter and not really a man in an otter suit? Fuck. What if he actually had a wild animal in his car and here he was just...talking to it like it was a human being. Amazing. Fabulous. Wonderful. Spectacular. "Do you like music?" He asked as he turned on the radio with another flash of gold in his eyes, needing some sort of distraction from the fact that this was possibly a very bad decision.

With that, he moved to guide the car into more crowded areas again, taking side streets where he could on the way to Kit's place.

"You'll like Kit's. It's for people like you."

Music. The sound was loud and vibrating in the small space. He quieted down when it began to play. It seemed they were not going to the river. But the man said something about a Kit. Food? A type of fish? There was also the disgruntlement over the seat. So he stopped prodding and went back to sniffing around the car. His curiosity got the better of him and he clambered onto the middle divide and placed his head into the back. There was entire unexplored place. He shoved his head further in and his front paws followed. Except there was nothing to place his paws on, and they slipped down the divider and he fell face first into the back seat.

Jupiter kept an eye on him as much as he could while he clambered into the backseat. There was a bag of some towels for the salon back there, but as far as he knew that was it. If the towels got damaged or soiled or whatever they'd just go in the wash, not a big deal. What was a big deal was whether or not the Otter was going to pee in his car.

"Just don't....pee back there."

He shifted the car onto the highway headed for Ravenswood where the GPS told him to.

There was a whole host of unexplored scents in the back. Along with a new and exciting bag full of fluffy towels. He gave a few squeaks and squirmed his way into the bag, the plastic tore around one of his paws. But he ignored the sound and burrowed his face into the soft fabric, smelling odd smells. There were chemicals but they were warm. He lifted his face up and prodded around with a free paw before settling down rocking his body back and forth until he was comfortable. A contented yip to let the man know he was happy.

Jupiter looked in the rearview mirror at the Otter and actually managed a small smile when he saw him nesting. Okay, that was kind of cute. He shook his head and kept driving, singing along quietly to the music while he drove to the Haven, taking as short a time possible to get there despite the traffic before him.

When he pulled up at the Haven, Kit was outside waiting.

He got out of the car and waved to him. "Hello, sweetheart!" He waved and closed the door behind him. "I have a present for you."

Kit got the text from Jupiter early enough to get outside just as he was pulling up. Weak and tired, he leaned on his cane at the top of the steps and smiled at Jupiter. He was kind and flirty, which was most definitely not his type, but he could appreciate being called sweetheart.

"A present? You shouldn't have."

Jupiter hadn't said what he was here for, so if this was an actual present, he was surprised and somewhat concerned.

Jupiter opened the backseat of the car and beckoned to something inside. This wasn't a present.

He raised his head as the door opened. A thousand scent drifted in. But it was far more comfortable laying on the towels. He gave a squeak and pushed his paws further into the soft fabric of a towel. The plastic bag ripped as one of his back legs pushed through it. It was much better to just lay there and relax. The daylight was warming over his fur and he lowered his head back down. But he kept both eyes open watching the humans. They were close, just outside the door. He was more curious then anything on what they were doing. Neither of them had attempted to touch him and he felt no immediate need to defend himself.

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