Paying attention to detail 4

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This story is a work in progress.
Author: Sdw
Xanadu story universe

"You go on ahead, I'll find you in the lobby, I just want to drop in on, um, actually I don't think I know his name, but he's in some trouble and could probably use some help with his food". I headed for the room at the end with the guy with ball gloves for hands as the others headed for the stairs.

I knocked, and there was a shout from inside the room. I waited a short while and then heard "I can't open the door". Ball gloves - that figured. "Can you slide your roomkey under the door?"

The key was posted under the door, and I opened it to a quite unexpected scene.

The latex gothic angel girlfriend had arrived, flown in from outside I guessed and was an imposing sight. Take a girl, make her eight feet tall, and thin, cover her skin with fine black feathers and then add fully functional wings - now folded over her head, down her sides and just trailing on the floor behind, again jet black. Her breastbone hugely distorted her chest area, with the flight muscles a massive construction. Her chest now protruded forward about two feet and huge flight muscles now distorted her upper body. Her elbows were now about two feet above her head. Behind her a tail fanned out, again just touching the floor. She was wearing a black latex miniskirt and black latex high heeled boots, the rest of her body covered in real feathers. Her face seemed unchanged, and I guess she was beautiful in an imposing way, and was looking at me for a moment as if I were food.

"Hi" I said - lame I knew at the time, but I just wasn't expecting to see this.

"Hi. James just said you helped him get into the room, thank you" she replied. She sounded nice.

"So you can fly"

With a grin she opened one wing - there was only room for one wing to open, it stretched across the room as it unfolded with a quiet rustle, and as it did it sucked light from the room - a huge black aerodynamic foil of black feathers and raw power. "Yes I can, and it is the most beautiful feeling in the world". She tucked her wing back over and beside her carefully. "I've only just arrived, and I'm about to test my powers out on James - do you want to watch?"

"What powers?"

"I've three wishes."

"Why do angels have wishes?" I asked.

"I'm not an angel, I'm a fairy, and as a fairy I have three wishes. I always have had, ever since I was a little girl". She said with an impish grin. "James, what do you want to be?" she asked.

"Like you" he replied. James was still in his heavily modified form.

She paused.

"Can I touch you?"

"Of course you can..." and he moved towards her. She leaned forward and downwards to allow him to kiss her, and then he touched her feathers with the balls of his hands.

"Be careful, these wings really work and I'm missing the beak required to properly preen them. You can stroke them in the right direction, but be very careful".

He explored her body, stroking down the feathers on her body and head. He had tears in his eyes "I thought I had lost you. You are so beautiful" he whispered.

"I missed you. And I love you so much."

"So what are you going to do?" he asked.

"Make you like me, but with improvements. I cannot perch, and that would waste one of my three spells. I can make you better than me." She looked at her boots thoughtfully.

"Let me see, I need to work it all out first in my head before I do the actual spell. It's probably easier to do it in stages. Stay quiet and let me think. One spell..."

She closed her eyes, and a stillness came over the occupants in the room. All thoughts of food temporarily banished, just the sound of breathing, air conditioning and a soft rustle as her feathers quivered as she moved slightly. Time seemed to stop.

She whispered "This will come in stages..."

James began to change shape, it was like watching water flow, ice melt, skin ripple, in a matter of a few seconds James was what I expect James was like before the Xanadu moment, now naked and checking himself over. He went to the mirror and inspected his reflection. "I'm not the same as I was, I think I'm better, stronger, taller..."

"And you are still changing, or this spell will end. That's how I saw you" she said. "Now, I really need to concentrate, quiet, and..." looking at me, "stand back."

I moved to a corner, and again the stillness came to the room.

Again she whispered to herself "Wings good, strength good, feet, think the feet through first..."

I couldn't help but think that I was witnessing something magical and at the edge of belief, and when the change came it was swift and sure - James took on height, muscle moved about, feathers of an iridescent purple and green formed and a few seconds later another feather clad creature was standing in the room. He was standing on black bird feet with shiny black claws digging into the carpet. His chest thrust forward even further than Tara's did - strong powerful flight muscles rippled across his torso.

James looked into his girlfriend's eyes. "Tara - this is amazing" and he partially spread his wings - which filled the room and there was more to spread. "I'm stuck" and he looked at his feet, where his claws had sunk deeply into the weave of the carpet.

"You need to think them open. At rest they will hold tightly to whatever you are standing on, and you need to actively think them open".

There was a moment before the ends of his talons lifted from the pile, and like someone wearing snow shoes he shifted his huge feet and took a couple of steps. "This is going to take some getting used to. Don't you miss your hands?"

"I do, and everything has now changed. We will need to find some way to survive, but that's in the future"

Only by standing diagonally and using the corridor space could the wingspan be stretched out, and still not completely. He attempted a little flap of the wings, dust stirred in the room as a small hurricane whipped air around the room.

"Not in here James, this is too small and you are too strong. You need to get used to that shape before you can fly".

"But you flew straight away"

"This is different magic - this is my magic and you'll need some time." The went to each other and kissed, and discovered the inconvenience of wings and the impossibility of hugging and clearly were excluding me, so I made some goodbyes and left the room.

Having been overwhelmed by the experience, and still not quite thinking straight I headed for the lobby. Mike was looking out for me and I joined the others in a quiet area of a bar - there was no food to be had, the American Red Cross were on their way with a field kitchen, Law Enforcement had cordoned the hotel and we could not get out, and the kitchens in the restaurants had been locked. Someone remembered that there was a restaurant on the top floor, we headed for the elevators, and found that we needed a key card to push the top two floors. To cut a dull story short we broke into the top floors, the kitchen was open, no one was about and we fixed ourselves a meal in their kitchen. Over 'dinner' I told the story of Tara and James. This caused a great deal more excitement than I expected at the time.

"She can do wishes! And you didn't think to let us know!"

"...And she only did one wish while you were there!"

"That means that two of us could be saved" shouted Sharon, who thumped the table with a hoof, got up from the table and started stamping around the restaurant - shouting and screaming that she could be changed back. Mary, who had sat on two chairs, got really cross with me and Mike looked at me in utter disbelief of what I'd done. There was much swearing.

Food forgotten they raced to the room, to find the door ajar, and Tara and James gone. Mike and Mary rifled through the posessions left in the room, looking for anything that resembled contact details or an address. Crumpled in the bin was an E-ticket for a flight from Minneapolis, and on the receipt was their address. All we had to do was get to Minneapolis, find them and persuade Tara to use the last spell to help us before she used the last spell on someone or something else.

Simply put, we did not catch up with Tara before she had used all her spells - she did modify her feet, and provided them both with a set of arms and hands in addition to the wings. They became quite famous and earned money in a variety of different ways, some of which might have been military.

"Well, who else is going to feed you? I don't see a long line of volunteers".

I was cross. Three weeks later and I was back at home, and mid way through my change. It was uncomfortable, and it hurt. And I had enjoyed an unexpected surprise when my changes were not what I had consciously expected to happen. Yes it was taking six weeks to change, but no, it was not all below the waist.

Sharon was living with me, which was not entirely my plan, but it kind of happened. Unfortunately for me she brought very little practically to the running of a home. She couldn't really do any of the chores that kept a household running, and she made a mess which she couldn't clear up. Her limited range of movement prevented her from doing most things, but she had a really nice bright and bubbly personality and tried so hard to please and help. I was just feeling particularly grumpy because I was not getting what I had expected. And I could not go to work, so money was really tight. There is a lot to be said for an instantaneous change. What possessed me to imagine a long slow change I don't know.

"But it's the sort of thing that you can do for me in exchange for something that I can do for you. You know you can't get about. I can help. You don't even know whether you'll be able to get about quickly once you have changed, Mr Muscle Man. All the muscles might get in the way."

She was right. I was hoping that once completely changed I would be able to walk, maybe even run. But for now I was stuck.

"Why don't we get a wheelchair delivered?" she said. "If we sort out some kind of shafts, I can pull you about. I can be your transportation".

By we, she meant me, but I could probably do something and there was some lumber in the outhouse which could be lashed onto the sides of a wheelchair.

"Fire up the laptop, attach the pointers and I'll take a look for you". We had improvised a holder for a pencil on each hoof which she could use to type on a keyboard and she could push a mouse about. It took a long time, but that was something she did not seem to mind at all. Nothing really frustrated or infuriated her. Everything infuriated me.