The Transformation Story Archive Strange Things and other Changes


by Eala Dubh

"I'm home!"

The familiar call echoed through the kitchen as Alice entered via the back door. She glanced at the wall clock; just past four. Her parents were still at work and nobody else appeared to be home, wh ich is just how she wanted it; the day hadn't been too strenuous and she had plenty of energy left. Alice reckoned she could probably squeeze in a good couple of hours' worth of magic practice before dinner, then it was the meeting that evening. Good. Or at least it was, until the loud crash from upstairs which jolted her out of her musings.

"Oh, no! Terry!"

Somehow Alice always forgot that her younger brother arrived home from school some twenty minutes before she did. Fearing the worst, she dumped her bags and raced upstairs. Sure enough, there was Te rry, standing amid what had been Alice's carefully stored possessions, now strewn around the floor. The wardrobe leaned at an awkward angle against one wall.

"Oh, hi, Alice. Sorry, I didn't mean to make a mess, I was just looking for something." As with all brotherly excuses, the words sounded completely unrepentant. He bent down to pick up some previous ly unseen items. "Hey, what are these?"

The books which had been previously and preciously secreted on top of the wardrobe were now in Terry's hands. Alice's heart sank. Those were the very things she had least wanted him to find, and fro m their ornate appearance, elaborate embroidering and gothic script on the cover there could be no doubt as to their subject matter, particularly to an impressionable ten-year-old. She snatched them out of his grasp.

"Give me those, you little creep. I need them for my magic classes."

"What, magic? You mean like, 'hocus pocus?'"

"It's not like that at all. You wouldn't understand. It's really important and special work actually, not everyone gets to be a magician."

"Oh sure. You're going to grow warts and fly around on a broomstick. Well you're ugly enough for that already."

Right. Terry had pulled this little room-raiding stunt once too often, and it was about time he was taught a lesson. A little scheme was formulating in Alice's head; since her secret was now out, sh e might as well make use of it. Their parents would not be home for another hour; they wouldn't see what transpired next.

"No, really. Look, I'll show you. Watch me." She cleared some space on the floor, took a step back, closed her eyes and began to concentrate.

"Watch what? I don't see-"

Alice began to shimmer, as if in a heat-haze. Colours blurred and ran together like paint splashes on a wet page. Through them, Terry could just make out his sister's outline as it changed, shrank, and dropped to all fours. Then it was over, and where Alice had been standing was now a medium-sized white cat; a fluffy and immaculately groomed Persian. Appearances were very important to a magicia n.

Terry couldn't believe his eyes. He stood there gaping for several seconds before enough gumption had gathered in his brain to manage a bewildered, "Alice? Is that you?"

Some magicians liked to be purists who when shapeshifting, prefered to completely adopt their subject form. Alice however was not one of them. There were centain human characteristics that always re mained useful; speech for one. "Yes it is," she said, allowing herself a decidedly smug expression for a cat. "What do you think? Took a bit of practise, but I think I've got the hang of it now."

"How did you do that!?"

"It's easy when you know how. Even you could-" Abruptly she broke off.

"Could what? You mean I could do that? Really!?"

" I don't think so..." Alice continued, goading Terry on. "It can be kind of dangerous if you've never tried it before."

"I wanna try it! Show me how!"

"Mmmmm... I dunno..."

"Come on, I'll be careful! I'll do anything you want! Show me!"

"Weeeellllll... OK. But you have to do exactly what I tell you."

Images flashed through Alice's furry head of all the hideously twisted and embarrassing stunts she could have Terry perform. In his c urrent hyperactive state, she could probably have him jump out of the window without any clothes on before he cottoned on. But no. This was better.

"Oh wow! I'm going to be a cat! This is so cool!!" Terry was visibly shaking; it was all he could do to keep himself from bouncing up and down. "What do I do!?"

"Well first of all, you have to relax." This is going to take a while, Alice thought. With a Herculean effort, Terry managed to stop trembling.

"OK. Now what?"

"Now you just close your eyes and will it to happen. Think of the cat, and let yourself drift into it. Concentrate."

Terry of course, for all his grunting and straining, wasn't achieving anything by himself. It was Alice's own spell that was being woven again, but this time to a markedly different formula. The shi mmering heat-haze effect appeared again around Terry.

"Hey, something's happening! I can feel it!"

And it was. Terry's clothing was blending with his skin, flowing out as fine brown fur. He could feel his body being moulded into a new form; not painfully, but it certainly felt peculiar. He opened his eyes to watch.

"Oh wow, it's really happening! Awesome!" Wildly excited by his transformation, it hadn't yet occured to Terry that he was changing into something entirely unfeline. And he was growing smaller. Much smaller.

When the change had finished, Terry held his little paws up to his face, and felt his expanded nose, his whiskers and his rounded ears. Twisting, he grabbed his tail and brought it around for a clos er look. It was long, thin and completely hairless.

"Hey, this isn't right..."

Totally confused, Terry looked up. Alice was towering over him, her face adorned with a grin literally as wide as the proverbial Cheshire Cat's.

"Alice... you've got awfully big all of a sudden."

"I know."

Daintily Alice picked up the unresisting mouse by the tail with a forepaw, leaned back against the wall, dangled Terry, who had just realised his predicament, in front of her face, and began to gent ly swing him back and forth, all the time displaying her fine collection of wickedly sharp, white teeth. Five minutes, she thought. Maybe ten. Enough to make sure he stays quiet.

"Alice, what are you doing? This isn't funny any more. Stop it, I'm getting sick! Come on, change me back! Please, I won't tell, I'll stay out of your room! I swear, I promise! Pleeeeease!!"

"I'll think about it," came the eventual reply. "Sometime."

Deterrent copyright 1999 by Eala Dubh.

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