User:Jetfire/Radio No Veil

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Paradise story universe
Works by Jetfire on Shifti

Radio No Veil

Author: Jetfire

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Ugh, damn flu. I'm trying not to curse it too much since it feels like the last few years and hopefully means I'll be changing again, but damn, I feel horrible. I'm hoping it will mean I'll go back to a billy, but Chris's situation hangs heavy on my mind.

In any case, everything that we can do to prepare has been done, it's just a matter of waiting. I've warned AT that I may be changing again, and there's nothing left for me to do. Shutting down now and trying to get some rest. Hopefully this headache will release soon enough for me to get a bit of sleep. Even if I change, I'll still have to be ready to help others.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Habits are hard to break. Even though I tossed and turned most of the night while in the grips of the Change Flu, and I had no real reason to be up early today, I was still up at twenty to seven in the morning, like I normally did during the week. Then again, considering how not a morning person I am, it's probably just as well I have those habits. Most weekday mornings I do a fair imitation of a zombie until I'm almost at work.

In any case, there I was, awake at 0640, my mind grinding gears as it tried to get up to speed. I knew I didn't have to be at work, but anticipation of the day ahead kept me from dozing back off. I stretched out in my nest of sheets, and ran my claws through my fur automatically. A few minutes later, my radio clicked on. The volume wasn't loud enough to be an alarm, but was meant to be playing when I woke up each morning.

My mind sorted through the pieces left over from the fever and tried to assemble a plan for the day. It was too early to realistically expect many new Changed to be up and aware of their new situations, at least not North American Changed; the Europeans were hopefully being handled. I twitched my ears towards the radio as the song ended and the morning announcer came on, bantering about something with the news host. I remembered he hadn't been on the air yesterday, then tuned him out.

I growled and rolled over onto my hands and knees, pushing myself up and trying to get going. My fingers felt a bit stiff, but I wasn't sure if it was a symptom of my change or not. I vaguely heard the hosts make a lame joke and was about to tune them out again when a horse's nicker came through the speakers loud and clear. My ears bolted straight up and I froze, listening closer as the host excused himself, claiming he was still a little hoarse from the illness yesterday.

"Oh Crap!" I shouted, suddenly wide awake. The radio cut quickly to a song.

I turned up the radio and paced my bedroom. My mind was spinning, shaking off the last of the sleep and fever cobwebs and trying to figure out what to do. The nicker was too real sounding and the host's embarrassment too obvious, especially when combined with his absence yesterday, for it to mean anything but a Change. By the end of the song, I didn't know what to do, other than that I had to get to the station.

I threw on some clothes, hoping they would be loose enough for whatever was happening to me. The itchiness I felt, and the numbness of my fingers made me certain I was Changing again. I grabbed my Walkman and cellphone and considered my options. This time of morning, taxis would take too long, but the station was near my work; the bus could drop me practically on the station's door, as long as I could catch it in time.

I ran down the stairs, and barreled out into the parking lot. I sprinted to the bus stop, and gasped to catch my breath. My chest ached but I was sure it was just from the sprint and not a Change symptom.

Settling the headphones over my ears, I tuned to the station and listened carefully, trying to tell what was going on in the room so close, yet so far away. The hosts were bantering again, but there was an undercurrent of nervousness to the banter. Occasionally, I could hear a very equine-sounding snort or whinny get out from the host. The news announcer didn't seem to notice it, but he was definitely noticing the host's reactions. I prayed to ROB that the field would cover it until he pulled himself off air or I could get there. My forehead was beginning to tighten and reshape, ridges I knew intimately regrowing, complete with a pair of points piercing the skin. I added an additional prayer that the field would continue to cover me.

The bus arrived shortly after I got my gasping down to a panting. I stumbled up the stairs, slammed my ticket into the coin box and slumped into a seat behind the driver. The driver gave me a puzzled look but I ignored him. My chin itched and I could feel my beard regrowing. I kept my head down low and hoped no one would notice that the clean shaven man had grown a full beard on a three minute bus ride. I fumbled with my phone, searching for the station's request line, finding it just as the song ended, and they started the lead up to the 7 o'clock news.

As my stop approached, I reached up without looking to hook the signal cord with a claw. To my surprise, my finger slipped right off the cord. A look up showed me my claws were no more, the claw having swollen back out to thick nails on the ends of my fingers. My pinky was once again shrinking back to nothing. I reached up higher and yanked the cord with my full hand.

I mumbled a quick thanks and kept my head down as I scrambled off the bus. My feet ached painfully, toes and claws swelling, throwing my pace off with every step towards the station. I tried to keep my own changes off my mind and figure out what to do now that I was here, but I couldn't settle on a plan that felt like it had even a remote chance to work.

I cut across the curling club's parking lot and looked at the side of the radio station, trying to pick out the studio's window. Pictures on their website with various bands had shown a window in the studio, but I had no idea which one it was. On the radio, the news ended, and they went directly to a song, something they rarely did. It gave me an opening though. I hit dial on my phone and waited, leaning against a tree for support. With my free hand, I rubbed my temples as my horns continued to grow back to their normal size.

"Fox FM, do you have a birthday for the list?" a voice answered the phone at last. My heart fell; it was the news announcer, not the Changing host.

"I need to speak to Freddy Mack. It's an emergency,"

"He's in the bathroom at the moment. What sort of emergency is it?"

I thought quickly and tried the classic lie of the desperate. "It's Doctor Kilpatrick, from the hospital. I've got the results of his tests, and it is imperative I speak to him at once."

"Please hold a moment."

I waited, flicking my ears as they changed shape. I reached up and adjusted the headphones for my changing head and ears, slipping the band under my horns. My beard was back to its normal length, but my muzzle stayed feline. Over the air, I heard one song end and a brief moment of dead air before the next song started.

"Freddy says he doesn't know you, and he never had any tests done at the hospital. Who are you really?" the voice returned, suddenly suspicious.

I snarled in frustration and wondered if that story ever worked. "Look, I'm just a friend who knows what's going on with him. I'm outside the south side of your building right now. He'll know when he sees me," I said frantically. 'Or he'll end up in a quivering ball of fright,' I added silently to myself.

The voice hardened. "Look, whoever you are. We'll have no stalking around here. I suggest you get off the station property now before I call the cops."

The phone went dead and I repeated my frustrated snarl, barely restraining myself from throwing the device to the ground. My chest and hips were aching , breasts shrinking away to pecs. I leaned more against the tree for support and balance, while my hips shifted, no doubt causing other internal changes in me. I did the only thing I could do, I listened to the radio.

The news announcer was back on. "Freddy Mack seems to have had a small relapse with his flu but he's doing fine. We'll be back with birthday's after these messages." The commercial kicked in but he hadn't fully turned off his microphone. By straining, I could hear the discussion in the room. "Freddy? Why are you dressed like that? You feeling all right?"

The microphone clicked off, but I could easily guess what might be happening. Hoping there wasn't a side employee entrance, I limped around until I could see the front door of the building, my hooves fully reformed, and the tawny fur of my legs lightening and thickening to the white goat fur. I had to pause and wiggle my pants as changes occurring with my groin gave me a painful pinch.

As expected, I soon saw someone walk out of the doors with a jacket pulled up over his head. Sticking out of the end of the jacket, barely covered by it despite the owner's best efforts, was a black horse's muzzle. As far as I could tell, only his head had changed so far, but that wouldn't last long.

"Wait Fred! I can help you! I know what's happening to you!" I shouted, starting to walk towards him.

The head swung to look at me, and seemed to freeze a moment. Then he started sprinting to a car. His running gait seemed off, like his mind wanted him to run in ways it wasn't able to run in yet, but it didn't hinder his movements much. I picked up my speed, old instincts returning quickly to help me balance on my hooves in a run. I reached his car while he was fumbling with the car keys. I put out a hand to touch his arm.

"STAY BACK!" he shouted, swinging his arm up at my touch. His fist, still very human, connected solidly with my feline jaw.

Stars exploded in my eyes, and my jaw screamed in pain. I stumbled back, grabbing a car antenna to stay on my hooves. As soon as the world stopped spinning, I reached up and rubbed my jaw with my other hand, tasting blood and feeling it beginning to swell. In the back of my mind, now that the stars were mostly gone, I hoped the swelling only meant my billy muzzle was regrowing I turned my head and spat out the blood and looked back at the host.

It was hard to see his eyes under the pulled up coat, but he seemed terrified while he fumbled to get the keys into the lock. It was clear that his fingers were thickening and he wasn't realizing the changed dexterity he needed. I took a step closer to him, which he saw reflected in the car's windows. He let out a scared whinny and dropped his keys to the ground. He backed up a few steps and held up his hands, trying to cross his fingers between us, then giving up and crossing his forearms instead. He began mumbling something I couldn't catch. Beside him, I caught my reflection in the car's mirror.

"Oh for Pete's sake, give me a break," I groaned, his mumbling and attempts to make a cross making sense now. With the hooves, the horns, the still mostly feline muzzle, beard, cougar eyes and now blood speckled lips, I looked like something straight out of a circle of hell.

Moving slowly, I reached up and took his forearms in my hands, and gently tugged them down. "Look, I'm not some devil or anything like that. I'm human, just like you. And I can explain what's going on. Just give me the chance."

The fight was out of him. I noticed his hands had finished changing, having thick nails similar to mine, but different. Black fur coated the back of his hands and went up under the sleeves of the jacket. I let go of one hand and reached up to push the jacket off of his head. He recoiled in terror, shouting "NO!"

"Trust me on this. You'll be drawing more attention to yourself with your jacket pulled up like that, than you would with your head exposed," I explained patiently, stepping closer and finally managing to tug the jacket down. A black furred horse's head was exposed. His ears twitched around in the air, and he panted hard. I knew he was a bit overwhelmed by his new sensory reception.

I tugged on his other hand and began to guide him to a picnic table set up behind the station, overlooking the race track. "Let's talk over here."

He had more and more difficulty as we walked. I supported him as best I could. A glance downward showed his shoes fading away with the shoe field taking effect, and his feet shifting, lifting him up onto his swelling toes. I kept quiet about it and sat him down at the table. I sat down next to him, facing him, feeling my tail shrink back to goatish proportions. I made sure to keep a hand on him at all times.

I toyed with the idea of going fancy with the introductions, but the new equine morph seemed too terrified to pick up on any humor. He kept twitching every time a car drove by, and his ears kept turning towards the stables at the other end of the track. Trying to gather my thoughts, I gave him a careful look over, and realized his proportions were somewhat off for being a horse morph. His build was smaller, more like a pony morph than the big horses like Winthrop or Natalie. While I studied him, the winds shifted and brought multiple strong horse scents over us from the stables. The smell seemed to have a calming effect.

"First, the basics. Yes this is real. No, you are not going crazy. And Yes, you really are now a black pony morph talking to a soon to be mountain goat morph in the radio station parking lot. I'm Joey Ford, and I'm the closest thing to an expert on this weird stuff you're gonna get in this region." I stared at him a long moment to make sure it was sinking in, then began the briefing spiel.

It took a few go-rounds before everything I was saying sunk in, but he gradually came around. The hardest part was convincing him about the field. In spite of the fact that we were sitting out in the open, in plain sight of everyone walking on the road or coming into the parking lot, he had a hard time believing it would make him seem normal to everyone else. I tried to convince him of how it worked by waving and shouting to everyone in range, but he couldn't seem to grasp it.

Finally, I decided something more hooves-on was needed. I stood up and held out my hand to help him get up. "Come on, my stomachs are rumbling, and yours must be too. And while the grass around here might be edible, I'd rather have something tastier."

"I'm not-" he started to say, but was interrupted by a rumbling in his belly.

I snickered and held up three fingers. "I've been through this three times now. Hunger is normal. Now lets go. It's not far."

He took my hand and I helped him to his hooves. He stumbled a bit and would have fallen were it not for my help. "One catch though, YOU are buying." I added.

"Me?!? Why do I have to buy?"

I clicked off my big fingers. "One, I'm the one who had to rush down here in the dead of morning before breakfast to try to stop you from literally making an ass of yourself on the air. And Two, I'm going to be broke enough replacing the food in the kitchen as is, so if I can get some free food somewhere, I'm gonna take it."

He grumbled but followed my lead around the building. His resistance returned when he realized I was turning us to face the doors. He tried to pull away, but I kept a firm grip on his forearm. When he was more used to his form and got used to his strength, he'd be able to break free easily, but for now, I had the advantage.

"No! I can't go in there!" he exclaimed, almost breaking free.

"Relax, there's nothing for them to see. Besides, we're going to the drug store, not into the station," I explained, trying to keep our pace steady. I did a quick glance around and was relieved that there was no one around to see us.

I dragged him up the stairs, catching him once when he stumbled, and lead us through the outside doors. Even though there was no one visible through the inner doors to the station, he still tried to hide behind me. I didn't comment on it, and opened the door to the pharmacy.

The scent of perfumes, disinfectants, latex and other things I couldn't place hit us strong. I snorted and got past it quickly, but Fred stumbled again, leaning against me for support, his muzzle wrinkling up in disgust. The clerk had her back turned to us so missed the reactions.

"You get used to it eventually," I mumbled letting the door close behind us and gently shoving him back onto his hooves. "Shoppers is worst though, with that damn perfume section right at the entrance. Brings up my cud every time I go in, and not in a good way."

"Can I help you find anything?" a cheerful voice asked.

I smiled at the clerk, now facing us. My smile became a bit more forced when I saw the 'Please excuse any mistakes, I'm new here' tag under her name tag. I had hoped that there might be a clerk here who would recognize Fred. "Just getting some snacks, thanks," I said, trotting back to the coolers. The pony, now breathing through his mouth, trailed after me.

"What DO we eat?" he asked me after a furtive glance around the small store. The clerk had turned back to whatever she was doing before we came in, and the store was otherwise deserted. Both of us could hear someone in the back moving boxes around.

I opened the cooler and hesitated, then grabbed a bottle of orange juice. "Juice? Water? Milk? I'd avoid the carbonated stuff until you're more used to everything," I asked, ignoring his question at first.

He frowned and reached past me, fumbling a moment then getting a grip on a bottle of apple juice.

"As for what we eat, for the most part, we can eat what we did before," I explained quietly. "Though it won't necessarily taste as good or as right as it used to. Sometimes we get new... allergies I guess you could say with the new forms, but despite our appearances, we are still omnivorous. Just take my word on it, if you have a hamburger for example, make sure you get a good bed of veggies and grains with it. It helps with the digestion, even if you aren't a ruminant like me."

He didn't seem convinced, but there was nothing more I could say about it. I made my way back to the front and looked over the snacks selection. I ignored the chocolate and picked through the bags of peanuts, chips, pretzels and seeds. I picked a tube of roasted peanuts and held it up to him. "That should be good to start for you, 'til you go home or to Superstore or wherever," I explained, grabbing a tube of sunflower seeds for myself.

I put the snacks on the counter with my drink and elbowed Fred. He blinked and put his own drink down.

The clerk scanned everything. "That'll be 9.89. Cash, Debit or Credit?" she asked, looking at me.

"It's his dime," I said, turning to the pony.

He gulped and fumbled at his jeans trying to reach into his pocket. With some effort he managed to get a couple of thick fingers in and pull out his wallet. "Duh-Debit," he said, flipping it open and trying to get a grip on the bank card.

"Try pushing it out," I suggested, watching his efforts.

He grunted in annoyance but finally got the card slid out. She swiped it and handed over the pin pad. I turned my head away, listening to the beeping.

"Uhm, could you swipe again? I hit the wrong keys," he said, embarrassed. "I'm sorry, I'm all clumsy fingers today," he added.

"No problem, sir. Try again. Do you need a bag?"

"We'll take it as is, thanks," I said, smiling at her and glancing at the pony from the corner of my eye. He seemed to be getting it this time.

She ripped off the debit receipt and stapled it to the register receipt and handed it to him. He flinched a bit when her fingers touched his own changed hand, but she never noticed. "Have a good day"

"I'm trying to," Fred said gloomily. I flashed her a smile and lead us out of the pharmacy.

The door closed behind us and Freddy started babbling. "She didn't notice anything... She looked straight at me and didn't even flinch. How the hell is that even possible? I've gotta be hallucinating. I'm still in bed with fever or something."

Fred tried to walk back around to the picnic table, but I stopped us. I sat down on the steps and tapped the bottom of the juice bottle. "Hold up here. You aren't hallucinating, it's all real. She talked to me too remember? Now adjust your pants before you break your tail and have a seat."

"My what?!?" he boggled at me. Clearly his mind still wasn't taking everything in yet.

I sighed and took a sip of juice. "Untuck the back of your shirt. Looks like your tail hair is all bunched up in there, giving you a rump hump. I noticed it in the drug store."

He set his drink and peanuts on the steps next to him and reached back, tugging on his shirt. Soon as it was free, a wave of long hair fell out the back of it. He shook it a bit, twisting to look at it. "What am I supposed to do with That?!"

I shrugged. "Got me there. I lucked out, either short fur short tail or short fur long tail. I have no idea how to handle long haired tails. You'll need to check on-line for those tips."

I used my teeth to tear open the bag of seeds and dumped some of it into my muzzle. I sucked the salt off the shells slowly, and tried not to smirk as he struggled, trying to tuck his shirt back in around the tail, then trying to get all the tail hair somewhat straight. I crunched the seeds, shells and all, and swallowed. He gave up on his struggles and leaned against the wall, taking a sip of juice. He longingly looked out to the parking lot, clearly wanting to be somewhere less visible, but I refused to budge. The concept of the Field was beginning to sink in for him, but I wanted to make sure someone who knew him saw him, to make sure it was firmly in place.

We ate in silence for a moment, watching the traffic go by. He finished his drink and looked back at me. "How do you do it? Act so calm and naturally even though you're a goat?"

"Two years experience mainly. And the help of a lot of friends. Plus, in my experience, the Field protects us best when we act normally. It's human, and Changed nature really. If you act like the mob, the mob doesn't notice you. But start doing strange things, like say putting these bottles over my horns, or putting a jacket over your head, that's strange and the mob will notice and look closer, increasing your risk of discovery. Some strangeness is unavoidable, but if we minimize the stuff we can affect, it makes it easier in the long run."

Movement from inside the building caught both of our eyes at once. Turning, I saw a man come out of a hallway and head our way. The pony's eyes widened and his tail shook, on the verge of bolting.

"Stay Put!" I hissed, standing up. He was torn between staying and running. Before he could decide, the man was there.

"Hey Fred, you're looking better now. I expected you to be long gone by now," the man said after coming out of the building, staring right at the pony.

The pony gulped and shook his ears, looking a bit sick now. "Erm yeah. I just needed some fresh air is all. Sorry for leaving you hanging on air like that. Mark, this is my ... friend, Joe. Joe, our news announcer, Mark."

The man looked at me, suspicious. I held out my hand. "Hi. Sorry about that call earlier. I really had to talk to Fred here, and didn't know the best way to get to him. 'fraid my mind isn't the quickest in the morning."

He didn't seem convinced, though he did shake my hand. "Good to meet you. Are you from here?"

"Aye, I work just over there, at Universal. Just another code monkey over there."

He continued staring at me for a long moment. I half expected to need to pull out my license to show I lived here, but it didn't get that far. He looked back at Fred. "So you're feeling better now? Back to a hundred percent?"

The pony forced a cough and smiled weakly. "Not quite a hundred, but up to at least seventy five. I... I think I'll be good for tomorrow's morning show."

"Good good. Give me a call if you need anything. Anything at all." He gave me a long look; I had the impression he was trying to memorize my face. "Have a good day, Joe."

He walked out into the parking lot, got in a car and drove off. I slowly let out a breath I was holding. "What was THAT about?" Fred asked.

"We got off on the wrong phone call. I think he suspects I'm a stalker stalking you. Come on, we can go back to the picnic table now."

"A stalker? Stalking me?" Fred laughed and followed me back to our first seats. On the race track, a jockey was exercising a horse.

I shrugged. "Two years dealing with changed related stuff hasn't made me a better liar. Especially not that early in the morning. The Doctor's story was the first that came to mind."

He chuckled and watched the other horse. "Sorry about that. If I had known, I would have played along with it."

"Don't sweat it, you had no way to know. I'm not worried anyways, nothing's gonna happen to you. I don't have your picture papering my walls, or have my radio playing your shows over and over or anything stalkerish like that."

"That's almost a disappointment.... Almost."

I reached into my pocket and pulled out my wallet. I rummaged in it and found the card I was looking for it. It had a cartoonish cat on it, and the text 'JF's Changing Services. Serving all of your changing needs', with a gmail address. The cards were AT's ideas and designs. "Got a pen? I'm afraid I left my backpack back home in my rush to get down here.

He patted his pockets, and pulled out a golf pencil. "Will this do?"

"It should." I jotted down my phone number and handed it over to him. I pulled out another scrap of paper and passed it and the pencil back to him.

"If you have any questions, or need any help at all, feel free to contact me there. And can you give me an email address I can send stuff to? A fairly private address? There's a lot more information out there to help us make it in the world, more than I can give you in the morning."

He started trying to write it out, but quickly became frustrated at the thickness of his fingers and the stubbiness of the pencil.

"Take it easy, print before you scrawl. You've got a brand new body remember? You'll need to practice to get the old habits like writing and typing rehoned." I tried to console him. "It does come back quickly."

He gave up writing and shoved the scrap back to me. I could decipher the first part of an address on it. "It's a yahoo dot ca address," he explained.

"Thanks, I'll send off our intro packet as soon as I get home. Maybe I'll get Natalie-" I paused and had second thoughts. "No wait, I'll have Shaun call you. They're two of the equine types we've got in the Maritimes."

"How many do we have here? In the city?"

"Counting you and me? Two. Statistically, we should have 7... no wait 13 as of today, but I haven't found them. For all I know they're kids in elementary school, or old people in the seniors homes, or other people who don't travel in the same circles I go in. We're always open to new ideas for finding others like us... ideas that don't completely short out the Field that is."

"I'll think about it. Maybe there's something I can do that might bring them out of the woodwork."

"No rush, you've got enough to deal with as is for now."

He nodded and looked away from the track. "So you really work over there?"

"Yeah, I do. I usually take my lunches in the park, and go that way home."

I could almost swear I saw the gears turning in his head. He tried to snap his fingers without success. "The goat tracks a few years ago... and the cougar sightings last year... you?"

"Click your nails together if you want to snap. It's almost as effective as a snap and the Field seems to translate it as such. And yes, they were both me. One of my guilty semi-secrets. It got me on the news and scared out a few more furs too. When you're up for it and used to everything, I'm sure Shiloh will want to talk to you. She's a coon reporter who's recording the experiences of the Changed."

He nodded and looked back to the track, listening to the sounds of other horses in the stables. "It's a lot to think about."

I nodded sympathetically. "And not to scare you too much, but we've barely scratched the surface. You're past the worst of it at least; from here on out it's just a matter of coping and adjusting. Thousands of us have done it so far, and you're doing fine now."

He nodded again, and turned back to the parking lot. "I'd better get home, figure out what to tell my family." He stared at his car, then down at his hooves.

"Auto or standard?"

"Automatic, thank god. It's going to be weird though."

"Just take it slowly, literally. Your habits will adjust soon enough. And it's your choice if you tell your family, but I would advise you wait until you read our info packs. Some of us do have family members and friends who know, but you'll want to make sure you're fully informed before you start telling them. I think there are even some guides some have written to break the news to norms." I snorted a bit and smirked. "You'll find lots of guides. Even guides on writing guides out there. For some of us, myself included, it's one of our main outlets for making sense of this."

We got up and headed back to his car. He unlocked it easily now that he wasn't panicking, and stood there a moment. "Put the seat back, swish your tail to the side and get in, sitting a bit forward in the seat," I supplied.

"Thanks again." he followed my instructions, wincing a few times but managing to squeeze himself in. The car started and I stepped far back from it. After a few hesitant jerks, the car drove slowly out of the parking lot. I waved and let out a long sigh of relief.

My stomachs began to rumble again, reminding me that they wanted real food. I cut across the parking lots to the trail behind the race track's stables and followed it to the SuperStore. Before crossing the parking lot, I sat on a bench on the trail and hit speed dial.

"AT's Transition House. Come in naked, leave with a new fur coat," a slightly hoarse voice answered.

"Hey AT, it's JF... err guess I'm back to Joey again. I swear, ROB is either trying to test me, or drive me to an early grave. How are things down your end?"

"Crazy. We've got newbies popping up all over the place. Richard says the poster campaign seems to be working; he got two fresh changed Acadian students in his dorm room now. Next year we should expand it to newspaper ads." Her mind caught up with what I said and she gasped in surprise. "You changed again?"

I grinned and bleated into the phone. "Yup, I'm horny again," I punned.

She groaned and I could imagine she was shaking her head. "You're lucky you're two provinces away, or you'd SO be feeling that right now."

"Well, if you want some free meat, you best get up here soon. I need to load up on salads again, and the fridge is full. I swear, next year I'm not going to bother with groceries for all of August." Her sudden giggle made me catch on to what I had said. I blushed and flicked my ears, quickly moving on.

"Anyways, sorry I wasn't able to help out that much this morning. We had a major emergency up here."

"Oh? What happened? Did the Premier change?"

"Not as far as I know. Last I heard he was out west for some Premier's conference anyways. No, we had a morning radio show host start changing on live air. Barely two days worth of flu too."

"Ouch, that could have been nasty. Everything handled?"

I looked around and waved to some joggers. They waved back without any reaction. "I think so. He took himself off air before he changed too much, and tried to make his escape while it was just his head. I sat him down and got him through the initial shocks. Everything else seems as abnormal as usual around here. Or at least no one else is screaming in terror from me."

"No one else?"

"Well, Freddy Mack wasn't exactly screaming in terror, but I was in the middle of my own change when I confronted him. I looked rather demonic. Remind me not to do house calls next year."

She laughed, "Will do Joey."

"Anyways, I gotta go fill my grocery cart. I'll be home in an hour or so and ready to pick up my slack."

"See yah soon."

I hung up and trotted to the grocery store. First, I needed food. And then, it was time to get back to work.

Preceded by:
Gaming Furs
The Veil (A Paradise Series)
(First: Holes in the Veil)
Succeeded by:
Six Furries and a Wedding