The Transformation Story Archive Horses and Doggies and Cats, Oh my...

Stump Broke

by Jack deMule

Everyone in the languid village of Anippe knew of their neighbors hopes, dreams and misfortunes. The gossip was confined to kitchens and bars. In this town politeness is still valued as is the veneer of privacy.

By local standards Jack is doing O.K.. He had taken an offer from his previous employer, a mining company, to buy out his pension and used the money to purchase a farm on the outskirts of town. It was the only impulsive thing Jack had ever done. He purchased the farm after reading the newspaper ad. Seeing it for the first time when he arrived to move in.

There are numerous animals kept at Jack's farm. The number and type varies but usualy you'd find a few head of cattle maybe a goat and several mules.

Jack's hair and eyes are gray. He walks with a slight limp, the result of an accident while employed at the mining company. His girl friend Beverley Miller, just plain Bev to everyone in town. She kids Jack about his weight. She says if he doesn't watch out he'll look like "one of those mule people". The mule people are friends of Jack's that share his interest in mules. Most are packers and coon hunters, a motley collection of bearded, over weight, beer drinkers in bib overalls.

The town's doctor was baffled by Jack's complaints and suggested he see the retired psychologist that had bought a nearby farm. Doctor Fred Russell . Although retired, he found Jack's case was interesting and said that he would like to talk with Jack to see if there was anything he could do.

"Thanks for meeting me at the park Doc. I still don't have much control over the, ah, attacks. It's made me a bit nervous about confined areas." "Oh that's quite all right Jack. It's a beautifull spring day and I like to eat lunch in the park when I can. Doctor Kettering mentioned your case at the library fund raiser last week. We didn't discuss many details, he said you've been having trouble sleeping and woke up in the woods once or twice. Is that accurate?" "Well Doc, it's accurate as far as it goes but it's these damn attacks that are really bothering me." "Attacks, yes, well doctor Kettering sent your records over to me but I'm still unclear to me what exactly occurs during one of these episodes." Jack swallowed hard. "Yeah, well I'm not sure myself. I still don't believe it." "Jack, just relax and tell me when do you first remember having ah, well as you say, attack?" "It was a few months after I bought the brown mule. Her name is Molly. Maybe I should start at the beginning, you know, when I first got her." Doc took a bite of his sandwich. "That would be a good place to start. Yes, tell me how you and Molly first met."

"I saw an to ad in the newspaper. For sale six year old molly mule, she's 14.5 h.h., drives, rides and packs. Dark brown in color. Very gentle with no vices, asking six hundred dollars.

It's a four hour drive to Iron county in the north country so I brought the trailer with me just in case I liked what I saw.

When I arrived a grizzled old man hobbled out to meet me at the barn." "Did ya see my little mules? Those ma babies!" "I was pissed. They were all little runts and horribly misshapen. The trip was a waste of time and gasoline. Just as I was about to tell this Gabby Hayes clone how I felt about his "babies" , Molly came round from behind the barn. She was perfect. Just like the saddle mules I'd seen in the old calvary tin types."

"Guess she's the one ya here for" he said. "I'm seventy eight years old ya know , just can't ride her anymore." "She walked right over to the old geezer and he slipped a halter on her. I opened the trailer and was wondering if she'd be an easy loader. He stopped her as she was ready to enter the trailer." "Yup! She's an easy loader" he cackled.

Then with a sly smile and a wink he leaned close to me and whispered under his breath. " she's stump broke but I couldn't put that in the paper." "Oh yeah sure, that wouldn't be good, I replied. I wondered what he was talking about. I had no idea what stump broke meant but he said it as if it was something special.

The ride home was boring but Molly seemed happy as long as we were moving. On the way back I stopped to stretch my legs and grab a burger. After a few minutes she began to stomp her feet. It shook the trailer and made quite a racket.

A couple in the restaurant parking lot wandered over to see what was in the trailer. One of them said "hey look at the donkey, oh it's a mule! I wonder if it's name is Francis?" Molly kicked so hard that the joker nearly tripped and fell as he jumped back from the trailer. Impatient little girl I though."

"Little girl?" Doc interjected. "You called her little girl?" Jack looked confused. "Just a pet name, didn't mean anything by it." "Yes, of course. Go on please."

"The first few months after I bought her everything was fine. She was gentle and well behaved as advertised. One evening I went to check on her in the pasture. A change in her disposition had occurred.

She turned to face me and began smacking her lips. An odd, exaggerated display. Ribbons of saliva ran from the corners of her mouth. Her ears were pulled back flat to her head, neck stretched out horizontal and her eyes bugged out. I thought that maybe she had hurt her mouth or she was choking. and went over to her to examine her. She tried to bite me! I had to push her head away so she wouldn't keep nipping at me. She turned and pointed her hind quarters at me. Her tail screwed up out of the way as she spread her legs and presented herself. Her vulva was swollen, it opened and shut in a winking fashion. She backed toward me and when her rump touched me she ejected a stream of mucus."

Doc swallowed another a bite of his sandwich and asked. "Did you find this, well, stimulating?" Jack was shocked. "No, of course not! In fact I found it rather repulsive!

The next morning I called the veterinarian. I described the symptoms and suggested that maybe there were weeds in the field that she could have eaten to cause her strange behavior. He laughed and said that it sounded like she was in heat but would stop over that evening to check her out.

He arrived at dusk and had brought a young woman with him, a student I guess. I entered the pasture to demonstrate the cause of my concern. Molly went through the strange ritual again and was even more insistent that I service her. She followed me where ever I went by backing toward me. The student blushed but didn't say a word. I think she was quite embarrassed. The vet examined the mule and pronounced her fit and in heat. Nothing to worry about he said. She'll get over this in a couple of days. As he predicted, in a few days she was fully recovered from her hormone induced insanity."

"You haven't described your first, I don't like the word attack, let's just say episode. Was it soon after these events?" "Yeah Doc, it happened that same year in the fall." "Tell me about it. Where did it take place."

"I was in the loafing shed. It was late September, an unusually hot day. The flies were vicious and Molly had been spending a lot of time in the shed to avoid them. When I entered the shed she was in her customary position standing with her head out the back window. I had just finished raking up the sand floor and was ready to leave when she swung her butt around and pinned me to the wall.

I could hear the smacking of her lips as she rhythmically squeezed me against the wall. Each shove of her body squeezed the breath from me. After a few chest crushing heaves I blacked out for a few minutes.

When I awoke a tetanus seized my legs rooting me to the spot. Molly continued her indecent assault without concern for my threats or cries of pain. Suddenly I felt my body bending and twisting in ways it wasn't supposed to bend. I began to panic. I was taller than her now and tried to climb up and over her back in my effort to get free. My head hit the roof of the shed and as I scrambled to gain a hold, I saw a pair of great hairy legs stretch across her back.

After I managed to free myself it took a few minutes to sort out my additional limbs. I must have looked like a wobbly new born foal in my first attempts to stand. Only no foal I'd ever seen looked like this, I was only half a horse. My upper torso was human and unchanged but below the waist was the body of a gray pony.

"This can't be" I said out loud. Molly turned to look at me and nickkerd. It sounded like a laugh.

For the next few days I wandered in the woods. Afraid that someone would spot me and all would know of my new and freakish nature. When I awoke on the fourth day, my natural form had returned. I though that I had been dreaming. "What do you usually dream about?" "Horses." "How long have you dreamt of horses?" "For as far back as I can recall."

Doc scribbled in his note book. " So you believe that for four days you were transformed into a centaur, interesting. When did the next episode take place?"

"A few months later when Molly was in heat again. It happened the same day that I noticed the return of her abhorrent behavior. That morning while I was in the shower a nausea over took me. For a moment I felt that strange feeling as if my body was being twisted in the grasp of some giant hands. The shower is too tiny for even a small pony to fit in. I was pinned against the walls and felt like I was suffocating. I began to fight my way free from the cramped space. I kicked until the outside wall gave way making an opening to the yard. When I squeezed through the hole I found Molly waiting for me smacking her lips in anticipation. The next four days I again slept in the woods." "Is there any reason that you can think of for an episode to last four days?" "I'm not sure Doc but I think that the mule was out of heat by that time." "No one saw you during the time that either episode lasted?" "No Doc. Like I said, I stayed out of sight. I don't want to be on the six o'clock news, in a hospital or worse yet a zoo. "Did you find out what the term stump broke refers to?" "Yes, it's when a horse or more often a mule is trained to back up to a stump so it's owner can, well you get the idea. Do I have to go on?" "No, that's O.K. I understand." "What do you think Doc, is there anything you can do?" "Did you try getting rid of the mule?" "No, that won't help. It's not just the mule now. If I get wind of any mare in heat it may bring on an attack. It can also happen when I'm asleep or if I get angry. "You don't find them attractive?" I mean being half horse , a mare in heat should have some effect. If talking about this bothers you just say so." "No, uh yes, I mean sure I feel an attraction but I know it's wrong. My body had changed but my mind is still human.

Doc, you haven't said if you think you can help me." "I don't know. I think we should be able to get these epsiodes under control. I'm going to have Doctor Kettering perscribe something that should help you with that." "That would be great Doc! Maybe I could sleep in the house again. The garage is not very comfortable."

"No, I expect that it isn't. Lets' continue. When Molly first exhibited her desire, you said that you were repulsed. Was that the full extent of your feelings?" "I don't know what you mean Doc." "How did her attention make you feel?" "I guess that I was a bit flattered that she felt that way about me. Even so, I knew that there was no way I could satisfy her. The equipment is incompatible or at least it was." "At the time didn't you wish that you could provide what she wanted? You said that you dreamt of horses." "Gee Doc... it was never like that! Sure I dream about horses, as a horse. I mean, I was a horse in my dreams. Hey, are you saying that I wanted to turn into some kind of freak?" "No, no, of course not. Your subconscious mind knew of your desire to be a horse, it's the source of the dreams. Until the mule's infatuation brought this desire to the surface the dreams were sufficient. So now you're having, well, let's call it a kind of dream, while you're still awake." "If you say so Doc but why just half a horse? Being fully a horse might not be all that bad." "Possibly you have some reservations about being a horse? Ahh...I see our time is up. Can we meet here next week at the same time, is that is O.K.?" "Sure, sounds fine to me."

Jack didn't think the shrink belived him, who would? He decided to find someone to witness his altered shape the next time the change occurred. so at least one person would know that he wasn't nuts. Jack couldn't decide on who to trust. It could be too much for Bev. but his "mule people" buddies would most likley think it was a joke. So he could expect no help from them.

Beverley is the same age as Jack but looks much younger. Beverley is a red head but bleaches her shoulder legnth hair blonde. Like many women in this part of the country she's on the heavy side but not fat. Her well formed figure should be described as voluptuous.

"Hi Bev ready to go? I hope the movie you picked this time has some action in it. Let's not waste another Friday evening with one of those kissey movies or I'm gonna puke." "Jack! You didn't mind the kissey stuff after the movie." Jack smiled sheepishly. "After the movie is different. I think maybe we should just skip the movie and head over to your apartment." "Why my place? We usualy go over to your house after the movies, it's closer. Besides there's no privicy. One of the disadvantages of renting an apartment in your parents house but they give me a break on the rent." "Oh, ahhh, the bathroom is broke. I have to do a little plumbing and stuff, you know." "Come on Jack, I've been waiting all week to see this movie. You'll like it, Jan told me there's a car chase and a building blown up in the first couple of minutes." "I give up! Let's go, I'll drive.

The Paris cinema is a little run down but it's clean and the movies are only a few months old. The steep slope of the theater floor gives everyone a good view and the old red velvet covered seats are very comfortable. Before the house lights dim Jack and Bev pick out some seats in the middle of the theatre, and off to one side side.. "These seats o.k. Bev? "Sure Jack. I just don't want to sit too near the front. Everyone can see us then." "who cares? We're adults, let them all talk." "Easy for you to say, just your friends at work to kid you. I don't want my mom's friends telling her any stories."

The house lights dimmed and the movie trailers were playing. Jack and Bev shifted a little in their seats settiling into a comfortable position, Bev's head on Jack's shoulder and Jack's arm around Bev's waist. Although the movie had now been playing for several minutes Jack hadn't been paying it much attention. He was looking at Bev. I'm lucky I met Bev Thought Jack. she's good looking, fun to be with and a great kisser to boot. I can't imagine what she sees in me. His thoughts drifted to her place after the movie.

Jack sat looking at Bev's face, studying the emotions that washed over it while she watched the movie. God, she's beautifull he though as he tightened his grip around her waist. She turned to look at him and smiled, then snuggled closer turning her attention back to the movie. Jack felt that strange gut wrenching feeling. "Bev! Get up! I'm gonna be sick!" "What, what's the matter? Jack you look awefull. Here, let go so I can get up." He couldn't let go, Jack's body was seized by the rigor that preceedes the change. "I can't Bev, I can't move! Oh, God not now please!"

In moments the change was complete. Jack's embrace had lifted Bev several feet, clear of the tangled mess of equine limbs and seats that had resulted. Jack was stuck between the rows of seats a rear leg poked through the hinge of the seat in front of him. Jack carefully put Bev down in the aisle, then tried yanking his leg free. The seat ripped from the floor but stayed clamped to his haunch. Bev stood in the aisle, watching, without saying a word. The movie continued to play. The projector operator in his little room full of noisey equipment, was oblivious to the event taking place. A women sitting a few rows back from Bev and Jack screamed something incoherent. Everyone in the theater turned to see what the commotion was about.

A collective gasp of disbelief spread like a shock wave across the audience. Then a frantic dash for the exits began. Bev was caught up in the stampede to the exits. Too stunned to do anything but allow herself to be pushed along, her last sight of Jack was of him trying to squirm free from the row of seats.

Finally Jack rolled over and got his legs underneath him. He pushed free tearing a couple more seats loose. The movie stopped and the house lights came up. Phil Radke, the owner of the theater, couldn't understand the fleeing audiances babbel about a horse in the theater. He pushed open the doors and was half way down the center aisle when he spotted Jack.

"What the, I don't know what you think you're doing but I'm calling the sherriff. Get out of my..." Jack turned and pulled the loose seat from his rear leg and threw it in Phil's direction. It was far off the mark. Good thing too as the man was frozen in fear. "Go ahead and call, I don't care. Have him shoot me, you'll be doing me a favor." Jack walked down the aisle to the front of the theater, the clop of his hooves echoed eerily in the empty hall. He jumped the five feet onto the stage and turned to face Phil who still had not moved. "Hey, better yet put me on display! You could make a lot of money with me on display like some freak in a carnival midway. Only I'm no fake! What the hell am I going to do now Phil?"

In front of the screen the light was better. Phil was unsure but thought that he recognized the apparition on his stage. Phil had inherited the theater from his father. He had lived his whole life in Anippe and knew Jack since the day that he'd moved into town. Jack and Bev were steady friday night customers. Phil knew them and enjoyed watching their romance bloom. He felt proud that his theater played an important part in so many of the small towns courtships. He could not answer Jack's question or deal with his bizzare new form. He just blotted it out of his mind.

"Go home Jack. Go out the side door they'll be a crowd waiting for you out front." " Sure Phil, I guess I'm not doing you're business much good. Take care of Bev, O.K.?" "O. K. Jack. I'll find Bev, she'll be all right but I think you scared the hell out of her tonight, scared the hell out of both of us."

The thought of Bev seeing him change, the fear he saw in her eyes, nearly made Jacks legs buckle. Now he only wanted to get back to the woods where he could hide. She'll never ,want see me again he thought as he sprinted the few hundred yards from the back alley of the theater to the safety of the woods near the edge of town. He could hear the sirens of the sheriff's car in the distance.

Phil told the sheriff that some nut rode a horse into the theater after getting one of the exits open. That was much easier to believe than a loose centaur. After a while Phil almost believed it himself.

Jack stayed away from the house for the next couple of days. He wasn't sure if he would be wanted by the sheriff. Also he didn't want Bev. to see him again in this form. Worse yet, what if she didn't try to see him at all. He found that eating was no problem as he could eat just about anything and enjoy it. Grass, twigs and brambles, spines and all, seemed a natural thing to eat. He told himself that he would rather have a thick steak as he munched on some white pine branches but he wasn't able to convince himself.

He needed water and at night he'd cautiously drank from a stock tank on the edge of his field. This evening there was a full moon, he could see his reflection in the tank but only from the waist up.

Huh! Looks like nothing's changed, thought Jack. Then he noticed another reflection beside his. It was molly. She nikkered coyly. She seemed pleased that she had finally found him . "You wicked little tart, look what you've done!" yelled Jack. "I'm neither horse or man but If I were a horse I think I could do better than you, you dumpy old thing." Molly's ears dropped, she turned and walked away. Jack felt a little ashamed that he yelled at her, after all, she had accepted him in whatever form he had aquired.

Jack kept his appointment with Doc Russell. As he passed through town on his way to the park everything seemed normal. It was if the incident at the theater had never happened. One of the guys at work stopped to ask him where he had been all week and if he was feeling better. He just assumed that Jack had been sick.

"Hello Jack, how are you feeling? Anymore episodes?" "Uh, hi Doc. I'm feeling O.K. I guess. I had another attack last friday. You didn't hear about it?" Doc looked at his hands. "No, why? Should I have heard something?" "I guess not." Jack sighed. "I though maybe you might have but, I dunno, maybe like you said, it's like some sorta dream." Doc looked pleased. "Really Jack! I'm sure that it is and it's good that you can see that too! I'd like to try something if you don't mind. I think a post hypnotic suggestion that next time you have an episode you'll be fully transformed into a horse, may help. Once the transformation is complete maybe this confilct can resolve itself." "Sure Doc, but I don't think I can be hypnotised.....O.K. Doc. whenever you're ready." "It's already done Jack, I'll see you next week at the same time O.K.?

Jack went back to work and picked up his life where he had left off. Except he hadn't built up enough courage to see Bev. He was cleaning up the barn when she rode into the barnyard on an old sorrel mule.

"Jack! Why haven't you been by or called? I'm beginning to think you don't like me anymore." "Oh Bev. I'm so glad to see you! I thought you'd never want to see me again! Let me help you down." He tied her mount to a post. Then she slid off the saddle and into his arms.

"Bev, I was so worried I couldn't stand it if you didn't want to see me anymore." "That dosen't make any sense Jack. You didn't come 'round beacuse you're worried that I don't want to see you anymore?" "Well after that night at the movies, I wasn't sure what you'd think." Bev scowled. "That was pretty odd that you just ran out on me like that. Phil had to drive me home. But he said you had a good reason, I'd like to know what it was." "Bev, You saw what happened. What else could I do?" "I don't know what I saw Jack, now that I've talked to Doc. He says it's mass hysteria or something like that. He also said you need some support. I just want to tell you that I do love you and whatever happens we'll be able to get through it together. Now kiss me, I deserve at least a kiss for riding that hammerhead of your's all the way out here."

"Huh, oh him, why don't you let me get you something better. You have to admit he's a safe ride, not much life left in him though. I know, we'll pick out a horse for you next auction that rolls around" "Jack, he's a plug. Now how about that kiss." There was a long embrace then the kiss. "She never kissed me like that before" thought Jack. "what ever Doc said to her it was something right."

Jack felt himself changing. This time it was different, more violent. He looked a Bev, and gasped "Bev don't be afraid and don't leave." "I won't Jack." Bev replied in a soothing voice. "I'll be right here untill it's all over. I'll never leave you again". Jack's throat ached, he tried to speak to reassure Bev but only produced a decidedly equine grunt. He could still discern Bev. standing near by. No fear in her face this time, he thought he must be loosing his mind too, could she really be laughing?

"Bev! How's my favorite niece this fine morning?" "Hi Doc, nice of you to stop by and help get things ready for the auction. Here hold the trailer door open for me. Get in Jack, now that's a good boy!" "Bev, that's a fine looking animal but he won't win any prizes with that limp. I didn't know Jack would end up as fancy stock like that. Seems pretty well behaved for a stallion." Bev Smiled. "Oh yes, he's quite a gentleman." Doc tied off Jack's lead. "Still calling him Jack?" "Sure, why not?" Bev replied. "It didn't seem right to change his name and confuse him. I know he won't win any prizes but he's good stock and he'll make a fine stud"

Molly wandered over to the trailer and was about to enter. "Not you long ears, the mule people will be by to pick you up later on." Jack could hear Molly's sad bray as the trailer reached the roadway.

Phil was sweeping the sidewalk in front of the theater when he spotted Doc walking his way. "Hi Doc! How's Bev taking it now that Jack up and dissapeared?" "Oh, she's ok Phil. Thanks for asking."

"That's good to hear Doc. I was worried that she'd have to go back to the hospital." "I think that's all behind her now Phil. She was so depressed after her grandparents and horse died that same year. Of Course I'd do anything to make her happy but untill Jack showed up we just didn't make much progress."

"You know Doc, I though she'd take Jack's leaving a bit hard. That last guy, what was his name? Oh yeah, Gary. When he left it nearly finished her. I guess having that horse to care for keeps her occupied. Bev sure loves her horses." "Yes Phil, she sure does."

Stump Broke copyright 1996 by Jack deMule.

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