A Lesson is Learned But the Damage is Done
By: Unicorn

 

Dylan heaved a quiet sigh as her eyes followed the path of Cindy across the cafeteria's floor, jealousy evident to anyone who was listening.

About five inches short of six feet and twenty years old, Dylan was the type of girl who could be characterized as 'just another face'. There wasn't anything outstanding about her straight blond hair that went down past her shoulders and occasionally fell down into her eyes, or lightly tanned skin. She had an average build that was just starting to creep towards slightly pudgy and, her clothes, while not bad, weren't particularly memorable. She had a pleasant personality, if a bit soppy -- she was the kind of girl who really believed that life worked out like a story-book. One of the nameless girls that was just a face in a more charismatic girl's posse, she was, in short, pretty much average.

The reason for her jealousy was evident; across the eating hall's floor, one of the more popular girls, Cindy, was showing off the latest fad that had just come off the market -- genetic splicing. Situated on top of her head sprouted two triangular cat's ears and, peeking out from underneath her skirt, was a long black coloured tail. Dylan enviously watched as she twisted and turned, allowing her boyfriend, Brock, to run his hands across the length of the tail.

Thankfully, her attention was diverted as her flatmate, Sara, sat down in the seat next to her. Dylan had known Sara for years, and the two were inseperable. Usually, it was Dylan following Sara's lead -- in high school, when Sara went out, it was Dylan that would follow along, and Dylan even waited before applying to schools just so that they could go to the same place. Happily, things worked out well, and the two had gotten an apartment together.

"Will you look at that?," greeted Dylan, gesturing towards Cindy. "She went and got the injection. I bet her dad bought for her. They're supposed to be beastly expensive."

Sara stuck out her tongue. "Jealous much? Why should it be such a big deal to you?"

"Well, I mean, come on! Look at her! She's parading herself in front of everyone, showing off..."

"Dylan, I just think that you're jealous of her. It's not even that big of a deal. I think they look sort've silly, actually..."

Dylan heaved a quiet sigh, pushing her tray to the other side of the table so that she'd have room to settle her arms and head on the table. Voice muffled by her arms, she thought for a moment, then quietly responded, "I don't think so... I know I want to get one, after reading all the articles. It's safe, too. They couldn't sell it if wasn't."

Sara rolled her eyes, spooning some mash potatoes into her mouth. "Whatever you say."

Dylan gave an annoyed grunt and shut her eyes. A few moments passed, and then she moved to get up, saying, "I'm gonna fool around a bit before class starts, then. I know I can't stand her and watch Ms. Priss show off to everyone."

"Bye then," said Sara after swallowing. "Hope you're not feeling so crabby, later. Take a walk? It might help, and the weather's starting to warm back up, thank goodness."

Dylan gave a quiet grunt, neither a yes or a no, and picked up her tray, trundling off after giving one final glare to Cindy.

~ ~ ~

Dylan did eventually decide to take that walk, though she did wait until classes were over. Evening was just starting to sink it's roots in when she stepped outside of her apartment and locked the door. Thrusting her hands in her pockets, she exhaled loudly and set down the path.

The area around the college campus really was pleasant -- despite her earlier grumpiness, in a few short minutes, Dylan found herself smiling again. She always had found natural rather calming, and even occassionally did her schoolwork under a particulary nice tree out behind the apartment. Eventually, she soon let her mind just drift, walking down the path on autopilot as she enjoyed herself.

"Hey!"

Dylan paused and blinked blankly, coming out of her reverie. She looked around, back and forth, until her eyes finally caught the figure of a young man skulking around the side of a building, back leaned nonchalantly up against the side of a wall. He looked to be around six feet tall, and was dressed in blue jeans and a black jacket that was zipped up the middle.

"Yes?," wondered Dylan, a bit uncertainly.

"I couldn't but help overhearing you complaining in the cafeteria. You want to be popular, right? It's not fair that girls like Cindy should be getting all the attention."

Dylan, who wasn't entirely sure where this conversation was leading, but vaguely suspecting that it was anywhere positive, nodded her head. "I guess. I mean... she does sort've beg for attention. It doesn't really affect me, though."

"Yeah. You could look at it that way. Even better, though, is you could get what she has, so that you could be popular, just like her."

"What do you mean," said Dylan, interested despite herself.

"The injection, doof. It's the thing, right now -- you want to be cool, you get the splice."

Dylan's face crinkled up into a frown. "Yeah... but that's out've my league. I mean, why even bother? It costs, like, what? Ten-thousand dollars for one of those? I can't afford it."

The man gave a leering smile, as men of these type generally do. "There's the rub, where I, your great benefactor, come into play." Using his foot, he gently slid a small metal briefcase forward with his foot that Dylan hadn't noticed, up until that point. "In that case is eveything that you need for your own splicing. S'fox. Got it for myself, then decided that it wasn't really suited to my, ahh, tastes. Company won't take it back -- no refund --, so here I am, Mr. Generous, giving it to you for a cut rate. Fifty bucks, and that's cuttin' my own throat."

Dylan gave a quiet intake of air, in two minds. On one hand, here was this guy offering up a highly supsicious offer. Fifty bucks for something that cost thousands of dollars? This can't be real!

On the other hand, though... the side of Dylan that was inclined to believe that life really was like a story, here was fate offering her a chance to get something that she really wanted. It couldn't be a scam, could it? Maybe this really was fate's way of recompensating those who didn't always get the good things they deserved.

In the end, the latter way of thinking won over. Dylan, after a short questioning of the man to reassure herself in it's autheticity -- really, though, she wanted so deseprately to believe that the fellow didn't have any trouble assuring her, counted the money out of her purse and handed it over. The man scooted forward the case with his foot, pocketing the money quickly.

"My thanks to you, lady. You enjoy yourself, then," he grinned, and moved off to go further behind the building, out of Dylan's view.

Dylan held still for a moment, watching the man go out of sight, then bent down and picked up the case. Clutching it to her like you would something precious, she hustled quickly back to her flat.

 

Dylan soon reached her flat, still clutching the metal briefcase to her. A quick turn of her key and she was back inside. She immediately glanced towards the peg that hung right by the door, checking to see if Sara was home. The absence of her keys reminded the girl of her best friend's schedule -- it would be another couple of hours before Sara returned, meaning that Dylan had ample time to investigate the contents of the briefcase.

The young woman settled the briefcase on her bed, then moved into the adjoining the bathroom. As she started to remove her contacts, she glanced in the mirror, able to see the briefcase where she left it. Her heart quietly pounded with the implications of what she might be able to do. Here was her chance at popularity -- these things, happened, right? The good girls always got a chance at what they truly deserved. Well, here was hers.

She finished up her business in the bathroom and then moved over to the bed. Getting down onto her knees, right next to it, she settled the briefcase in front of herself and fumbled through the locks. Failing, dissapointingly, to make a cool whooshing sound -- briefcases like these should always make cool whoosing sounds when opened, protested a quiet voice in the back of her mind --, the lid eased back on it's hinges, revealing it's innards.

Seated, all by itself, on a foam padding shelf, sat a syringe. Picking it up with fingers that were gently shaking, she turned it over with her fingers, inspecting it. On the smooth glass tube was the logo of the company that produced the injections and, underneath that, was a stylized caricture of a fox's head.

"This is it then," said Dylan, holding the needle alot. She tried to steady herself by taking a deep breath. Last minutes doubts surged at the edge of her unconsciousness, but she quickly stamped them with the giant boot of self-assurance. "This is what I want," she said aloud. Fearing that she would change her mind at any second, she plunged the needle into her arm, pushing down the button of the syringe to inject the liquid into her.

Dylan experienced a cold and mildly numbing feeling as the serum entered her blood stream, keeping her eyes diverted so that she wouldn't have to watch. It all went into her surprisingly quick -- it wasn't very long before she felt the stopper hold in place, indicating that the whole injection had been pushed in side. Giving a little wince, she withdrew the needle, picking it up and settling back onto it's foam holder. Moving gingerly, vaguely waiting for something spectacular to happen at any second, she got gingerly got back up onto her feet.

Eager, she turned and glanced at through the bathroom door, looking at the mirror. No. No ears yet.

A quick turn and an inspection of her buttocks indicated no, no tail, either.

"Was it a scam, then?," the girl quietly wondered to herself. She held still, sure that the expected transformation would occur in just the next second. The next second turn into the next minute, however, and the minute quickly invited it's friends over. After a full five minutes -- three hundred seconds of waiting for the next second --, Dylan heaved a quiet sigh. Not quite willing to give up hope, she started to move to the bathroom. She paused right before passing through the doorway -- something wasn't quite right.

She had just moved her hand up in front of her eyes for inspection when the pain -- grueling, agonizing -- started, feeling as if someone had taken a hammer and, very precisely, hit every square inch on her body. She quickly lost her balance, tumbling to the floor on all floors. Vaguely aware of the fact that she was throwing up, her tortured mind noticed an unfamiliar feeling rippling throughout her body. Peering through bleary eyes, she watched in amazement as fur started to sprout from the tip of her fingers.

Dylan was briefly aware of a falling sensation, as if the world was growing rapidly larger around her, then blacked out.

 

 

 

A Lesson Is Learned but the Damage is Done
By Unicorn

 

 

Babyfur content to come, yo. Buildin' plot.

Dylan heaved a quiet sigh as her eyes followed the path of Cindy across the cafeteria's floor, jealousy evident to anyone who was listening.

About five inches short of six feet and twenty years old, Dylan was the type of girl who could be characterized as 'just another face'. There wasn't anything outstanding about her straight blond hair that went down past her shoulders and occasionally fell down into her eyes, or lightly tanned skin. She had an average build that was just starting to creep towards slightly pudgy and, her clothes, while not bad, weren't particularly memorable. She had a pleasant personality, if a bit soppy -- she was the kind of girl who really believed that life worked out like a story-book. One of the nameless girls that was just a face in a more charismatic girl's posse, she was, in short, pretty much average.

The reason for her jealousy was evident; across the eating hall's floor, one of the more popular girls, Cindy, was showing off the latest fad that had just come off the market -- genetic splicing. Situated on top of her head sprouted two triangular cat's ears and, peeking out from underneath her skirt, was a long black coloured tail. Dylan enviously watched as she twisted and turned, allowing her boyfriend, Brock, to run his hands across the length of the tail.

Thankfully, her attention was diverted as her flatmate, Sara, sat down in the seat next to her. Dylan had known Sara for years, and the two were inseperable. Usually, it was Dylan following Sara's lead -- in high school, when Sara went out, it was Dylan that would follow along, and Dylan even waited before applying to schools just so that they could go to the same place. Happily, things worked out well, and the two had gotten an apartment together.

"Will you look at that?," greeted Dylan, gesturing towards Cindy. "She went and got the injection. I bet her dad bought for her. They're supposed to be beastly expensive."

Sara stuck out her tongue. "Jealous much? Why should it be such a big deal to you?"

"Well, I mean, come on! Look at her! She's parading herself in front of everyone, showing off..."

"Dylan, I just think that you're jealous of her. It's not even that big of a deal. I think they look sort've silly, actually..."

Dylan heaved a quiet sigh, pushing her tray to the other side of the table so that she'd have room to settle her arms and head on the table. Voice muffled by her arms, she thought for a moment, then quietly responded, "I don't think so... I know I want to get one, after reading all the articles. It's safe, too. They couldn't sell it if wasn't."

Sara rolled her eyes, spooning some mash potatoes into her mouth. "Whatever you say."

Dylan gave an annoyed grunt and shut her eyes. A few moments passed, and then she moved to get up, saying, "I'm gonna fool around a bit before class starts, then. I know I can't stand her and watch Ms. Priss show off to everyone."

"Bye then," said Sara after swallowing. "Hope you're not feeling so crabby, later. Take a walk? It might help, and the weather's starting to warm back up, thank goodness."

Dylan gave a quiet grunt, neither a yes or a no, and picked up her tray, trundling off after giving one final glare to Cindy.

~ ~ ~

Dylan did eventually decide to take that walk, though she did wait until classes were over. Evening was just starting to sink it's roots in when she stepped outside of her apartment and locked the door. Thrusting her hands in her pockets, she exhaled loudly and set down the path.

The area around the college campus really was pleasant -- despite her earlier grumpiness, in a few short minutes, Dylan found herself smiling again. She always had found natural rather calming, and even occassionally did her schoolwork under a particulary nice tree out behind the apartment. Eventually, she soon let her mind just drift, walking down the path on autopilot as she enjoyed herself.

"Hey!"

Dylan paused and blinked blankly, coming out of her reverie. She looked around, back and forth, until her eyes finally caught the figure of a young man skulking around the side of a building, back leaned nonchalantly up against the side of a wall. He looked to be around six feet tall, and was dressed in blue jeans and a black jacket that was zipped up the middle.

"Yes?," wondered Dylan, a bit uncertainly.

"I couldn't but help overhearing you complaining in the cafeteria. You want to be popular, right? It's not fair that girls like Cindy should be getting all the attention."

Dylan, who wasn't entirely sure where this conversation was leading, but vaguely suspecting that it was anywhere positive, nodded her head. "I guess. I mean... she does sort've beg for attention. It doesn't really affect me, though."

"Yeah. You could look at it that way. Even better, though, is you could get what she has, so that you could be popular, just like her."

"What do you mean," said Dylan, interested despite herself.

"The injection, doof. It's the thing, right now -- you want to be cool, you get the splice."

Dylan's face crinkled up into a frown. "Yeah... but that's out've my league. I mean, why even bother? It costs, like, what? Ten-thousand dollars for one of those? I can't afford it."

The man gave a leering smile, as men of these type generally do. "There's the rub, where I, your great benefactor, come into play." Using his foot, he gently slid a small metal briefcase forward with his foot that Dylan hadn't noticed, up until that point. "In that case is eveything that you need for your own splicing. S'fox. Got it for myself, then decided that it wasn't really suited to my, ahh, tastes. Company won't take it back -- no refund --, so here I am, Mr. Generous, giving it to you for a cut rate. Fifty bucks, and that's cuttin' my own throat."

Dylan gave a quiet intake of air, in two minds. On one hand, here was this guy offering up a highly supsicious offer. Fifty bucks for something that cost thousands of dollars? This can't be real!

On the other hand, though... the side of Dylan that was inclined to believe that life really was like a story, here was fate offering her a chance to get something that she really wanted. It couldn't be a scam, could it? Maybe this really was fate's way of recompensating those who didn't always get the good things they deserved.

In the end, the latter way of thinking won over. Dylan, after a short questioning of the man to reassure herself in it's autheticity -- really, though, she wanted so deseprately to believe that the fellow didn't have any trouble assuring her, counted the money out of her purse and handed it over. The man scooted forward the case with his foot, pocketing the money quickly.

"My thanks to you, lady. You enjoy yourself, then," he grinned, and moved off to go further behind the building, out of Dylan's view.

Dylan held still for a moment, watching the man go out of sight, then bent down and picked up the case. Clutching it to her like you would something precious, she hustled quickly back to her flat.

 

Dylan soon reached her flat, still clutching the metal briefcase to her. A quick turn of her key and she was back inside. She immediately glanced towards the peg that hung right by the door, checking to see if Sara was home. The absence of her keys reminded the girl of her best friend's schedule -- it would be another couple of hours before Sara returned, meaning that Dylan had ample time to investigate the contents of the briefcase.

The young woman settled the briefcase on her bed, then moved into the adjoining the bathroom. As she started to remove her contacts, she glanced in the mirror, able to see the briefcase where she left it. Her heart quietly pounded with the implications of what she might be able to do. Here was her chance at popularity -- these things, happened, right? The good girls always got a chance at what they truly deserved. Well, here was hers.

She finished up her business in the bathroom and then moved over to the bed. Getting down onto her knees, right next to it, she settled the briefcase in front of herself and fumbled through the locks. Failing, dissapointingly, to make a cool whooshing sound -- briefcases like these should always make cool whoosing sounds when opened, protested a quiet voice in the back of her mind --, the lid eased back on it's hinges, revealing it's innards.

Seated, all by itself, on a foam padding shelf, sat a syringe. Picking it up with fingers that were gently shaking, she turned it over with her fingers, inspecting it. On the smooth glass tube was the logo of the company that produced the injections and, underneath that, was a stylized caricture of a fox's head.

"This is it then," said Dylan, holding the needle alot. She tried to steady herself by taking a deep breath. Last minutes doubts surged at the edge of her unconsciousness, but she quickly stamped them with the giant boot of self-assurance. "This is what I want," she said aloud. Fearing that she would change her mind at any second, she plunged the needle into her arm, pushing down the button of the syringe to inject the liquid into her.

Dylan experienced a cold and mildly numbing feeling as the serum entered her blood stream, keeping her eyes diverted so that she wouldn't have to watch. It all went into her surprisingly quick -- it wasn't very long before she felt the stopper hold in place, indicating that the whole injection had been pushed in side. Giving a little wince, she withdrew the needle, picking it up and settling back onto it's foam holder. Moving gingerly, vaguely waiting for something spectacular to happen at any second, she got gingerly got back up onto her feet.

Eager, she turned and glanced at through the bathroom door, looking at the mirror. No. No ears yet.

A quick turn and an inspection of her buttocks indicated no, no tail, either.

"Was it a scam, then?," the girl quietly wondered to herself. She held still, sure that the expected transformation would occur in just the next second. The next second turn into the next minute, however, and the minute quickly invited it's friends over. After a full five minutes -- three hundred seconds of waiting for the next second --, Dylan heaved a quiet sigh. Not quite willing to give up hope, she started to move to the bathroom. She paused right before passing through the doorway -- something wasn't quite right.

She had just moved her hand up in front of her eyes for inspection when the pain -- grueling, agonizing -- started, feeling as if someone had taken a hammer and, very precisely, hit every square inch on her body. She quickly lost her balance, tumbling to the floor on all floors. Vaguely aware of the fact that she was throwing up, her tortured mind noticed an unfamiliar feeling rippling throughout her body. Peering through bleary eyes, she watched in amazement as fur started to sprout from the tip of her fingers.

Dylan was briefly aware of a falling sensation, as if the world was growing rapidly larger around her, then blacked out.

 

I've got mixed feelings about this.

Dylan's eyes twitched, the female slowly regaining her consciousness. Something unpleasant in the air caused her to automatically wrinkle her nose up. Instinctively, she groped outwards, and the smooth cylindrical objects faintly made the word 'cage' rise up in her head.

A brief aside at this juncture will be required.

According to science, our universe branches off endlessly. Where we make one decision here, another one of us is, in some alternate dimension, making the other decision. What this means is that if it can happen, it has happened, is happening, or will be happening somewhere else.

Regardless of these facts, however, it's amazing how many times this scenario will present itself. A young person of varying ages -- usually somewhere between fifteen and twenty, leading a depressing life -- will, through varying means -- usually, horrific accidents and benevolent mother figures are involved here, although to some, it happens through no apparent reason -- will find his or herselff transmuted into another creature -- usually, an anthromorphic animal of around two years old --. Invariably, with very few exceptions, when this person awakens into their new body, they'll at first think they're in a cage of some sort, only to find that, aha, it's actually a crib and, oh no, they're a baby animal.

This is not the case here, however.

The device that now currently holds Dylan is, in no way, recognizable with a crib. The latter are usually padded with soft cushions, and painted with pleasing colours so as to soothe an infant. With what Dylan is in right now, however, the creator clearly had a different purpose in mind. "It doesn't need to be nice," he told he design team," or pretty." Whereas a crib was designed as a pleasant and comfortable place to lounge, this cage was designed to make a clear distinction from the world outside, and the world inside, and to ensure that was in the world inside stayed there.

It was to this world that Dylan awoke. Gripping a bar of the cage with one paw, she slowly, and with a good deal more effort than she thought should normally be required, hoisted herself into a sitting position, her eyes blinking dimly in the bleak and badly-lit surroundings that she gradually recognized as her flat's garage. What am I doing in here? Dylan thought groggily to herself. Out've the corner of her eye, she caught a glimpse of what she was using to hold to the bar, looked away, then quickly took a double-take.

There's really no way to describe, on paper, how alternatingly disturbing and fascinating it is to have your own body alien to you. Dylan frantically turned over her hand, front and back, in front of her eyes, examing the small and fuzzy paw she had, closer to something you might find on a fox than you would a human. Mentally, her mind was a train wreck of cognition as scrambled thoughts and memories collided with one another, the memories of what had previously happened to her flooding back into her.

The female gave a panicked once-over of her body. Dylan was now under two feet tall, and was had what you might get -- and probably do get, in the more rural parts of the country, where the line between what is and isn't acceptable in bedding partners isn't quite so rigid -- if you crossed a fox with a human. She also noticed, explaining the horrid odor and her crinkled nose, that she was sitting in a small puddle of her own urine, kept in the cage by the small siding. Being unable to get away from it almost made her begin to retch.

Dylan pressed her back to a corner, feeling her panic and confusion start to rise. She opened her jaw and tried to scream, but all that would come out were pitiful squeaks. Dylan was about to really start losing it when her attention was stolen as the bright outline of the door made by the light pouring through the cracks began to widen, signifying that someone was coming in.