|The Transformation Story Archive||Horses and Doggies and Cats, Oh my...|
Dedicated to the memory of Tex Avery.
As she dressed for that night's performance, Claudia studied herself in the mirror. She took exquisite care of herself and it showed. The peasants outside the opera world (the only world that mattered, she thought) believed that pathetic expression about "the fat lady." True, there were some sows among the divas, but there were also absolute goddesses. Claudia knew she was one of the latter. Her jet-black hair was styled in an upswept do that had previously been the privilege only of royalty. Her skin was flawless. Neither mole nor blackhead had ever appeared on it. And, while she wasn't fat, she did have the quality a soprano most needed, a healthy pair of "lungs." She put on her strapless, industrial-strength bra, and pulled her gown (also strapless) up over it.
There was a knock on her dressing room door. Claudia called "come in!," and in walked the maestro with a small girl.
"Claudia," said the maestro. "This is my niece, Janet. She's a big fan of yours."
"It's a thrill to meet you," said Janet. "When I grow up, I want to be an opera singer just like you."
"Well, then, you've got a lot of work ahead of you," said Claudia.
"I know. I'm in choir now and . . . "
"That's not what I mean. Yes, voice is important. And, I'm sure, with some effort even yours can one day sound like a nightingale's. But you'll need to do some serious dieting. Not just for those thighs, though God knows they'll need liposuction before you're 16. You'll also need it for that complexion. Do you really want to sing an aria when people can play "connect the dots" with your zits? And that nose! I can give you the name of a wonderful plastic surgeon! But your hair? Shave it all off, dear, and go with a wig. It's your only hope!"
Janet turned and ran from the room, tears streaming down her face.
"How could you do that?," said the maestro, shocked. "She idolized you and you treated her like dirt!"
"Don't take it personally. It isn't your fault your niece is a dog," said Claudia. "But I'm here to sing, not tell fairy tales to every little Cinderella brought before me. Besides, if I had to be nice to everyone who idolized me, well, then, I'd have to be nice to everyone, wouldn't I?"
"Consider your niece fortunate to have had Claudia speak to her at all!," said Jennifer, Claudia's accompanist, who'd been sitting in the back listening. "Claudia is a STAR! She really can't be bothered to curtsy before every little nobody brought before her."
"Now, see here!," said the maestro.
"Oh, get out of here," said Claudia. "If you're really that upset, feel free to walk out of the performance. I'm sure they can find an old wino off the street capable of waving a stick around!"
"We don't really need you anyway," said Jennifer. "I know the notes. Claudia knows the words. So wave your baton over yourself if you want to, and make yourself disappear!"
The maestro huffed, turned, and left the dressing room to the laughter of the two women.
The maestro walked angrily to his own dressing room. There, he found Janet, sobbing.
"Don't let the words of those witches bother you," he told her. "You sing divinely and you're more beautiful than either of them."
"But I'm not!," said Janet. "I'll never be as beautiful as Claudia is!"
"Trust me," said the maestro. He walked over to a closet and took out a baton. "Inside, Claudia is an animal, a spoiled child. Tonight, I'll bring all of those things out."
"Is that a baton? I've never seen one like it before."
"It was given to me by an old friend, a tenor. He had made an enemy of a magician one night, just before a performance. The magician took the place of the conductor that night and played some tricks on my friend. But my friend eventually got the 'baton' and turned the tables. He kept this afterward and gave it to me when he retired a few years ago.
"Take your seat in the auditorium. I promise, you're going to see the performance of a lifetime tonight."
Half an hour later, the curtain parted. Jennifer was seated at her piano. Claudia strolled on stage to wild applause. She was surprised to find the maestro still there and his brat of a niece in the front row. She gave both her most contemptuous smile.
The maestro waved his baton. Jennifer began to play, and Claudia to sing, "Habanera." Claudia thrilled to feel the sensuous notes pour from her throat. She looked at the audience, at the men who were captivated by and the women who were jealous of her beauty.
She didn't notice the odd gesture the Maestro made with his baton.
Suddenly, everything SHIFTED! Claudia dropped three feet in height. Instead of her gown, she was wearing a frilly little girl's dress. Mary Janes were on her feet. Her hair was in curls, ringlets at the side of her head! Jennifer was playing a different tune. More surprising, Claudia found herself compelled to sing and dance along with the melody.
"On the go-oo-od ship, Lol-li-pop . . . "
It was like a bad dream. The audience was shocked at first, then they started to laugh!
The maestro waved his baton and things shifted again. Claudia was even smaller, and sitting on the stage in a clumsy fashion. She tried to stand up, but her legs weren't strong enough to support her. They were tiny, chubby things. And she had no teeth, only gums!
Her clothes had changed, too. She wore only a small piece of cloth held by safety pins around her hips. She didn't consider covering her chest because there was nothing to cover, just a pair of tiny, pink nipples.
Jennifer had changed tunes again. Claudia's mind faintly recognized it and tried to sing along, but her tongue seemed unused to forming words. What came out was:
"Wokabye bebe onnatweetah . . ."
The audience laughed even harder, though some people were saying "Aww!" Anger swelled inside Claudia. How could anyone laugh at this? She was scared, helpless - and hungry! She could only think of one response to the situation.
She began to cry.
She heard footsteps behind her and turned to see Jennifer, now towering over her. Jennifer picked her up. Claudia could see she was just as confused. Then, Jennifer opened her silk blouse and removed her bra. Claudia didn't bother considering why. She just saw a beautiful, swollen nipple in front of her face. In the most natural response in the world, Claudia put her mouth over her best friend's nipple and began to suck. A moment later, the opera star felt warm, delicious milk squirt into her mouth. The audience responded with another "Awww!" Claudia closed her eyes.
The maestro brought his baton down HARD.
Claudia opened her eyes when she heard Jennifer gasp. Then, Claudia realized (as Jennifer had, with pain) her teeth were back. She held out her arms and saw they were their former size. She had turned back into an adult. But she was still only wearing a diaper! And still sucking on Jennifer!
Claudia let go of her friend, stood up straight, and covered herself with her arms. She began to run offstage, when, suddenly, she was wearing her gown again. She still wanted to leave, but she felt an odd compulsion to stay where she was and resume singing the "Habanera." Similarly, Jennifer resumed playing.
The maestro gestured with his baton.
The tune changed again. This time, it was "Donkey Serenade." But Claudia wasn't singing the words. She was braying!
That's when she felt the sensation at the bottom of her spine. At first, she wasn't sure what it was. But her gown was tailored to a snug fit that showed off her figure. It was tight enough. The fabric ripped behind her. She glanced and saw something long and slender, with a tuft of hair at the end, GROWING from just above her beautiful bum.
Her ears tingled. She brought her hand up to feel the right ear elongate and grow hair! She started to bring her other hand up to check the left ear, but she didn't HAVE a left hand anymore. It was a hoof!
Her feet also tingled. She took a step forward and left a shoe behind. Like her hand, her feet were turning into hooves.
Her sense of balance shifted. She wasn't comfortable standing on two legs anymore. She felt forward, stopping herself with her front hooves. (Her right hand had joined the left in "hoofdom.") She wasn't resting on her knees, though. She had no knees anymore!
Her entire body itched as it grew larger. Coarse grey hair grew out and covered it. Finally, she could feel the curious sensation of her nose and mouth pushing forward, of her face getting longer and heavier.
Why was this happening?, she wondered. The question and the unfairness of her situation mad her so angry, she could only do one thing.
She kicked, lifting her hind legs up and tottering on her front hooves.
Jennifer was behind her. Jennifer was topless, wearing a pair of brown leather trousers and a large-brimmed hat on her head. In her hand was a whip that she cracked against Claudia's strong hindquarters!
"Mule train, YAH!," sang Jennifer as she cracked the whip. She was on a large wood cart, holding reins that hitched to Claudia's face. Claudia felt the bit in her mouth. Jennifer continued to sing, tug on the reins, and crack the whip over Claudia.
The maestro waved the baton.
Claudia was herself again. She was stark naked, her gown in tatters on the stage. The bit was still in her mouth. Jennifer still had the whip. There was another CRACK! Claudia got on her feet and massaged her red-streaked (but not bleeding) bottom. She started forward, pulling the heavy cart with Jennifer off stage left.
Then, Jennifer was back in her normal clothes at the piano, as Claudia walked out from stage right, dressed in her gown singing the "Habanera" again.
She sang it for nearly 20 seconds when the maestro gestured with his baton.
Immediately, Claudia and Jennifer were both tiny. That was nothing compared to the fact they were in a glass bowl filled with water. And that was nowhere near as distressing as their ability to breathe in the water, or their nakedness, or their fish tails! They were miniature mermaids.
Jennifer tickled the ivories of her piano, which had shrunk with them. Claudia began to sing, in a voice even higher than her baby voice was:
"Down in the meadow in a itty-bitty poo
Fwam fwee baby fiddieth an' th' mama fiddie too . . ."
Everyone in the audience suddenly had magnifying glasses to see the tiny mermaids. Claudia sang the song to its end, when a giant hook with an equally huge worm appeared above the mermaids' heads. Neither Claudia nor Jennifer could resist the scrumptious treat. Each chose an end of the worm and began to devour it. So tight was their grip on the unfortunate invertebrate, they were yanked with it out of the fish bowl.
Everything was normal again for five seconds.
Then, not only the tune, but the instrument changed behind Claudia. She turned to see Jennifer wearing a hat and a huge, fake mustache as she turned the handle on a one-legged, hand-cranked organ. Claudia started to run off stage, knowing what was coming next. But the mysterious compulsion filled her and she froze in her tracks.
Her gown shrank down into a vest around her chest. Her underwear had vanished. She covered her pubic hair with her hands, but hair sprouted all over her body. She could feel another tail growing from her backside. This tail was strong and flexible. Her arms and legs lengthened as her body shrank. An odd, round hat appeared on her head, held by an elastic strap under her chin. A small tin cup materialized in her hand. (Or was it now a paw?)
"Eek! Eek, ook, ch-ch-ch!," were the sounds her mouth now made when she tried to speak.
She saw the audience. Happy, smiling faces. They'd have the round, shiny things that she needed for her mistress at the organ. She merrily bounded into the audience, which laughed at her. She held out her cup, and she could hear the metal clink in it as the people tossed it in. Whenever they did, she'd lift her little cap in thanks.
She worked both the auditorium and balcony. Her last stop was at Janet's seat. Janet reached into her purse and, to her surprise, found a banana! Claudia took the banana, tipped her hat, then returned to the stage to hand her mistress her earnings. She changed back as she ate the banana - but she was still wearing only the vest and cap.
The maestro waved the baton.
Claudia was on all fours again. She was very small. Her hands had been replaced by forelegs and hooves again. She was covered in a fluffy white substance.
Jennifer sat on a stool next to her. Jennifer now had large, straw hat and a pair of denim overalls. Something in her hand buzzed. Claudia could feel it run over her body as the buzzing started a tune. Claudia, in an odd little voice, began to sing:
"I'm a poor little lamb who has lost her way.
"Baa, baa, baa . . ."
The hat and vest were clipped off as Claudia continued to sing the song. She was unnerved by the realism of her "baas."
The song and shearing ended simultaneously. Claudia turned back into herself. She was now naked with only hair on her eyebrows. ALL of her other hair had been shaved off. Claudia stood up to discover herself flashing "bald beaver" at the audience.
The maestro waved his baton.
She had clothes on again, a set of bricklayer's overalls, and a small hat. Next to her was Jennifer, who now wore a pantless sailor's suit. But, like Claudia, more than just clothing had changed.
Claudia felt heavier even before she looked at Jennifer. It was a strange sight. There, wearing the sailor suit, was a huge, odiferous pig! It was covered all over by coarse, pinkish hair. A large, curled tail stuck out behind it. But the pig still had Jennifer's hair and eyes. It would have been Jennifer's regular face, except for the ears on top of the head and the hideous snout where the nose and mouth should have been. Claudia's cruel sense of humor almost inspired her to laugh - until she noticed the short, bristly hairs sticking out of her OWN snout.
Both sows squealed in dismay. Then, they began to sing/snort:
"Who's afraid grunt of the big, bad oink wolf?"
The maestro waved his baton. A few sparks sputtered out of it.
Both Claudia and Jennifer were nude, except for leather collars around their necks - and tiny bows on top of their heads. They each had long ears, and tails with small tufts of fur on the end. Below the waist, both women had the hindquarters of dogs. Their arms were unchanged, except that they had paws instead of hands. Both bare, human breasts, and their faces were unchanged, except for their black noses.
They showed no dismay. Indeed, Jennifer and Claudia both looked happy. Large grins were on their faces. The only odd thing was that both let their tongues hang from their mouths.
As Claudia and Jennifer both barked through a duet of "How Much Is That Doggie In The Window," the maestro wondered what had gone wrong. He's meant for them to both completely turn into poodles, with pink-dyed, styled coats. He hadn't meant for any part of them to stay human.
The bitches finished their duet, and the maestro waved his baton again.
He tried two more times. The women remained in their half-canine forms. Only one solitary spark came from the baton.
He knew what had happened. He'd used up the baton's power.
The next hour, there was a lot of confusion. Claudia and Jennifer leaped off the stage and ran down the aisle, out of the theater. After several minutes, the audience became unruly and the management had to refund their admission fees. The maestro took no blame for what had happened. Management assumed Claudia and Jennifer had pulled some sort of trick and planned to sue them when they were found.
The maestro beat them to it. The poodle-women were in an alley, surrounded by a small pack of male dogs. The maestro didn't want to know if the former opera star and her accompanist had gone into heat. He just offered them doggie treats, then got them into his car.
They now live on his country estate. Janet comes by often to make sure they're okay. In spite of their treatment of her when they were fully human, Janet was kind to them. They responded with eager, vigorous licks to Janet's face. The maestro is studying several old books of magic he'd found in used bookstores. He's promised Janet that, if he finds out how to recharge the baton, he'll restore both women to their true forms.
Janet isn't worried, though. Both of them seem to be happier as poodles than they were as women.
And they're a lot friendlier, too.
Command Performance copyright 1996 by K. M..
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