2007-09-05: Why Are My Feet Funny?


Eric_icon.gif Laurel_icon.gif

Summary: Two strangers meet up in the Bronx Zoo in the penguin house. The penguins who probably ponder amazing things, like why their feet don't walk right.

Date It Happened: September 5th, 2007

Why Are My Feet Funny?


When your best friend works at the Bronx Zoo, it's a good idea to get a membership so that you can visit whenever you want in the whole year. That's exactly what Laurel's done. There's still work to be had, animals to tend to, especially in the aviary, and the photographer came earlier. She's got a lot of time on her hands today. It's a slower day for her type of photography. With her extra time to wait for her friend, she's seated on a bench in the penguin area. They're wobbling around on their not-really ice platforms, diving into the water and swimming around with the glass between them and her.

They're not doing syncronized swimming like Daphne can make them do, but they're still adorable. There's a rather expensive camera in her lap, not the wimpy kind that most tourists have, and she can't help but raise it up, adjust the flash to avoid glare, and snap a few pictures of the penguins doing their swimming.


Its dark in the Penguin house. Its nice, and dark, and cold and out of the weather…not that the weather is too bad. Its also pleasently quiet.

That quiet is broken as someone suddenly throws the door open and zips inside. The young man looks around wildly before ducking towards one side of the door. He's wearing a nice black denim jacket, a red t-shirt with a pair of battling dragons on it, and pair of black jeans. All clean and well cut. Not having noticed Laurel there he just hides with his back to the wall.

The sound of several people clattering past outside can he heard. One calling someone's name, before he just breathes a sigh of relief. Whew. Safe. They didn't duck inside to check on him. He shakes his head a moment before brushing himself off.

Thats when he notes Laurel.

He pauses, glancing at her camera, then at her, then he gives her a mildly lopsided grin. "…please tell me your just here to take pictures of the penguins?"


At the sound of the door banging open so suddenly, Laurel squeaks, though it may not be heard in the worry and the clammer. She avoids dropping her camera, but she's definitely startled, a picture or two snapped while she struggled to keep her grip that she's sure to be pouting at later due to bad angles and motion blur, but… she settles down, looks towards the young man with surprised eyebrows raised and then to the door. There's people chasing him? That isn't a good thing! But she looks back at him. He doesn't look like a thief or anything… so why would people be chasing after him? Her mind's already travelling in odd directions when he speaks to her.

She glances down at her camera, which isn't quite pointed at him, but could be in an instant. The urge is resisted— just barely. She'll take a picture of him before he leaves— but she'll need to adjust the flash anyway to do it. No glass in that direction.

"Um— well I'm here to meet a friend too, but the penguins are really cute." They weren't even that bothered by the banging, though they likely did hear it. Sound carries better through solids and water. "Are— you okay?" Don't mind the nosey photographer. She's also paranoid.


"…thank goodness…" He breathes out in a sigh. "…mind if I join you then?" He asks before he blinks slightly. "I…er…sorry…I really didn't mean to startle you," He adds after a moment with a half sheepish smile directed towards the photographer. "…and yeah…I'm fine. I just didn't think a nice day at the zoo was going to be ruined by a camera crew and the appearence of an old friend…" A rueful smirk covers his face for a moment before he just gives her a smile.

"Again, sorry to startle you…I really didn't mean too," And he extends his hand in a friendly enough manner. "…Eric." He introduces himself shortly towards her, but his manner and bearing are nothing if not friendly and polite.


"Oh, uh— sure," Laurel responds, moving aside just a little so there's extra room on the bench. "I doubt the penguins will mind. Not that I can ask them or anything…" There's an awkward trail off— Um, right. Seating arrangments. Plenty of room on the bench! She's still holding the camera, but it's not pointed in his direction just yet, even if there's mention of a camera crew chasing after him, and old friends. Mmm… Doesn't look like a prince from some foreign country— could be the relative of a politican, or a an actor, or— oh, right. Giving his name. She shifts the camera around a little so that she can reach out and take the hand, "Laurel."

Once she has her hand back, she looks off towards the penguins in the water— some of them aren't in the water. There's one that's looking down at it's feet as if trying to figure out why he can't walk so much as wobble around.

"You— um— famous or something? Camera crews and all? Will I get a couple hundred dollars if I snap a picture of you and try to sell it to a magazine." Not that she would do that, gossip magazines aren't really her thing.


"…I wonder what they would say if you could talk to them," Eric replies as he sits down easily enough on the bench and glances up at the birds with a slight grin. Its an amusing idea…though…he wonders if he could get Lachlan to come and give it a try. Wouldn't work though, they arn't even anywhere close to dogs. "…things like…'Why don't I have proper feet?'…" He says before he shakes his head a moment and grins mildly embarased towards the photographer. "…er…sorry. Thinking outloud again."

A pause before he gives a slightly annoyed snort. "…well something like that. I'm not sure if you'll get a couple hundred dollars for it unless I'm sitting next to someone that a tabloid can link me too though." He says before he grins. "Never wanted to be famous…but…when your father is the owner of one of the largest busisness in New York it just happens sometimes. Heck…I'd pay you a couple hundred dollars to /not/ take my picture."


"I don't know for sure— that one does seem really intent on his feet," Laurel says with a smile, nodding towards the one in question. Though she doubts that's what it is. According to her friend, animals are pretty simple-minded at times. Food, play, sleep, food, mating, instincts, danger… But she doesn't seem to mind the thinking outloud. She even waves a hand absently. "It's fine. I thought it was cute. They do walk really funny." She's smiling, watching as one of the wobbles over to the edge. Though it seemed a difficult mission to get there, he jumps into the water just fine and swims into view.

She raises the camera and snaps a picture— the flash, somehow, manages not to bounce off the glass very much. "Oh— I really wouldn't sell it…" Rich father, hmm? "My parents are both pretty well off— though I guess not as much as yours." They're well off enough that she didn't have to worry too much about money, but not people following her around with cameras well off. "Would you let me take one for free if I promise it'll go into my personal album and nowhere else? It's kind of a hobby of mine— if I don't have a picture of it, I'm not sure it really happened, you know."


"…yeah they do, but they make up for the walk with the swimming," Eric replies as he sets his elbows on his knees to lean forwards slightly as he watches the animals play around. They do look graceful in the water. "I guess everything has its place right?" He asks with a smile as he watches the penguin swim into view then the flash that follows it.

"…thats a nice camera…" He adds as his eyes slide back to his partner in penguin watching. Its a statement not really a question. "I have one thats not /quite/ as good, and I need a better flash for it." Rich Father and the added bonus of being one of the youngest men to ever be heading up a business merger. Thats what tossed him to the wolves as it were. "…well I try not to abuse the whole rich parents thing." He says sheepishly. "…I guess thats why I'm hiding from the other guys with cameras in here. Any of my other siblings would be eating up the attention."

A pause though as she makes her request. "…well…usually I don't." He says before a smile creeps onto his face. "…but alright. Hopefully I can take a good picture."


"They do— and you should see them when they're trained— they can actually syncronize swim, like people can. It's really cool to watch," Laurel says, looking back towards them. It's not something that she can make them do, unfortunately, so… they'll just have to watch their regular swimming.

"Oh— well, this is actually my 'fun' camera— my studio one is better," she admits, beginning to switch over some settings, actually pulling the flash off and replacing it with another out of a bag. "I'm a photographer— mostly weddings and advertising stuff— nothing tabloid or anything— though I did do a fashion shoot once for a magazine, which sort of counts." Red carpet photography, that sort of thing.

She better have a good camera when it's what she makes her living off of. With everything switched around, she stands up, the camera bag still hanging from her shoulder, and she looks at the area. "See— it's not your job to take a good picture, it's my job. You just sit there and I'll find the right angle. I'm not going to make you work for it." And that's exactly what she does, looking at him quietly, trying to find the proper lighting, where the shadows aren't too much. There. That's a good one. The mural background behind him works too.

Flash. Picture done.


"…they can syncronize swim? Thats…really kinda impressive. I didn't know they had anyone here that could train them like that," Eric admits with an amused look coming to his face. The things that have the training to do nowdays.

"…you have a studio?" He blinks in some suprise. "Alright then, I'm impressed. You don't do big things though?" He gets a shrewed look on his face for a moment, a thoughtful look. Of course thats when she takes the picture. Right when he wasn't really paying attention to it. Thats the best time to take one though, when the subject isn't trying so hard.

He has to laugh though after the flash vanishes. "…I've heard that from several photographers, and every time I believe it. Some of my siblings though don't believe that at all. They try a bit too hard." He grins slightly towards Laurel once more before he asks curiously. "…this just for fun then? Job an hobby all at once?"


Even with the picture— possibly legendary— taken, Laurel keeps the camera in hand, just in case a better picture shows up. "You'd be surprised what you can teach animals to do with the right person." It's said with a smile, and she glances back towards the penguins. Not doing any cool stunts, but— they're still cute. But why are their feet so funny? :(

"Oh— I do a few major things, just— not too often. I did a photo shoot for a resort in the British Virgin Islands earlier this year— they wanted to advertise better. It was a really nice resort." And she got to stay there for a while— so not complaining about that. "I also did a shoot for the Zoo— that little map they give out— and the magazine you can buy in the gift shop? I did all this pictures— it's how I met my best friend. She works here." And she ended up getting a membership, since… it's what people do to hang out with their friends. And the animals are cute.

"Both, yeah. Daphne keeps threatening to destroy my cameras. I think she's still mad at me for taking a picture of her date before she ever introduced me to him."


Legendary pictures of thoughtful businessmen. What will Laurel manage to land next? "I'm not suprised by much anymore," Eric reply is tinged with amusement. "Espicially when it comes to animals. I never really was good at keeping pets…or plants for that matter." His eyes are half on the photographer and half on the penguins. "…what kinds are they all? I can see the differences but just don't know much about them."

Hrmmmm. Turning his gaze on the photographer again he just grins. "Why don't you send a portfolio to my office then? If your good we can always use a few photographers that can help us out when we need them. I don't promise anything…but…" He shrugs. It seems an honest enough offer, and he seems an honest enough young man. "…I do remember that magazine and the map, I got them both for my little niece last time we were here." Then he blinks a moment and raises an eyebrow.

"…Daphne?" Pause. "I met a Daphne last time I was here. He let my niece play with a parrot." A smirk. "If I recall I had a heck of a time trying to convince her to leave the bird here."


"I think they only have two different kinds here," Laurel says, looking towards the sign for comfirmation. There are two listed, with pictures next to them. Not shot by her, but they're well enough that most children can figure out the differences. They're not like the Red Panda, which most people have never really seen before. "I don't know much about them, either— I just take pictures. These guys are cute and active— but I like the meerkats too. They're only active if you come at the right time of day, though. They were asleep when I stopped in earlier, all flopped over on top of each other. Still cute, but it's not photoworthy longer than a few minutes if they don't move."

Meerkat comas. They are cute for only a few minutes.

"Oh— you'll have to give me a card so I can do that," she says, but she shifts the weight of her camera around so she can reach into a pocket. She has a card, after all! Laurel Halifax, 283-7227. Photographer. Simple, but it has a cute little graphic in the corner, a twisty vine thing with flowers on it.

"Oh— then you probably met my friend." She names a height gesture. "Bout this tall, really blue eyes— I think she's the only Daphne that works here. She's really good with animals. She has her own Zoo at home, and she's gotten me to start one too— I have a bunny and a kitten already."


Yes. But there not nearly as adoreable as the red panda either. Very little is.

"…well apparently you do take good pictures," Eric replies with a laugh as he starts to stand. "…and meerkats usually are good subjects. Though most things don't make good subjects when asleep." He adds with a grin. "…active subjects are usually the best ones, though the hardest. Course you know that…I'm just a bit of a talented amature is all." He says cheerfully aware of his own limits when it comes to pictures.

"Alright," He replies as he reaches into his jacket pocket and fishes out his own business card. A metalic silver color with the name 'Eric Lancaster' stamped on one side and the Lancaster Eletronics logo spread across the other. "…now should I call you or you call me?" He asks with a smile.

He nods then thoughtfully. "…that…defintially sounds like her. She did look to be good with animals from the way she was handling that parrot." The smile on his face turns inot a frown then before he looks at his pocket and sighs. "…no rest for the wicked…" He mutters as he pulls out a blackberry.

"…I'm going to have to call this meeting a bit short…but…it was a pleasure to meet you rather unexpectedly Laurel." He says with a smile. "…hopefully we can run into each other some other time."


"I'll get a portfolio together and call you to find out where you want it dropped off. But if you have something urgent you need a really skilled photographer for— weddings, family photos, school pictures— anything at all really, just let me know," Laurel says, pausing for a moment. It's when he answers his phone that he'll see another flash. Business man on the phone with a mural of artic life in the background. It's rather attractive, and he didn't even know she was going to take it. Even better.

Taking the camera, she puts it back into the small bag, taking a few pieces off so that it can fit, balancing it against her hip expertly.

"Oh, we definitely will, Eric. I'll want to show you how your pictures turned out," she says with a wave, before letting him run off for business.

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