The Mind Manifests Chapter 7
I started heading off into the woods behind the house, just so I could process and figure out what I was going to do with my now permanently ruined life. Sure, I had the body I always wanted, but it wasn't the body the world wanted me to have. In the entire history of mankind, you either conform or die, so being what I was now, simply wasn't going to turn out well.
I easily hopped over the fence, finding my wings were quite effective at grabbing the air. After about three minutes of walking, I was in a clearing at the top of a hill, my favorite spot in James's woods, I loved going back there to enjoy nature.
With a deep breath, my sinuses finally cleared from the blockage they had had since my change, and with a flame-filled sneeze, I could finally smell easily again, and it was wonderful. Everything was just so fragrant, I was catching hints of a patch of wild flowers that was at least a hundred feet away, I could smell apple blossoms, though the nearest apple tree was a good quarter mile away.
One scent did suddenly catch my attention, an animal scent, kind of like a dog, but not quite. I started sniffing at the air, and out of curiosity, I flicked my tongue like a snake, letting the forked tips hit my nose, partially out of instinct, and partially because of a discovery channel special I saw once…and it was like I suddenly had the scents slammed into my face. A few more flicks, and it was like an abstract form of sonar. I now knew how snakes did it, and it was amazing.
I started tracking the scent, walking away from the clearing, and with a few hints of noise, I started zeroing in, there was some sort of thrill I was getting from this, I was having fun stalking whatever this was. I dropped to all fours, and kept closing in, flicking my tongue faster and faster. I likened it at the time to the radar on a fighter jet, getting a lock-on just before launching a missile.
A moment later, I launched myself over a bush at my target. I couldn't stop myself between the time I realized what it was and when I hit. I quickly relaxed my claws and closed my mouth just before impacting, so I just rolled off, only causing minimal damage.
I quickly got to my feet and whipped around, seeing what I was hoping was a teenager, but age was hard to tell, as her body was covered in fur. I inched closer, as she just stared at the ground, I had tackled her and she didn't even look up. After a moment, she shouted "Just kill me alre-" she stopped halfway through the last word when she looked up and saw me.
I smiled a little when I saw a glowing blue crystal in her hand, and brushed the mane back from her slightly dirty face "So I was right, I'm not the only one." I helped her to her feet, she was obviously very confused right now. She just kept staring at me in shock and horror, eventually tugging away, clutching the crystal tightly "Wuh-wuh-what are you?"
"Me? Dragon…you on the other hand…I don't really know, I'm thinking fox."
She looked down at her body, brushing her mane out of the way again, and replied "Yes…vixen…it's funny, I always wanted to be one...and now that I am...I just want to go back."
I realized she was naked, so I took off my shirt, once again struggling with the wings, and gave it to her "We should get you somewhere safe, out of this forest, there are bears and coyotes out here, you know."
"Yes, I know, it's why I came, I thought you were a wolf, the way you tackled me."
"And for a couple seconds, I thought you were lunch."
She quickly locked eyes with me in horror, and I laughingly replied "Don't worry, I'm actually trying to go vegetarian."
She put the shirt on, and hugged me "Thank you, it's so nice knowing I'm not alone anymore."
"No problem, the Name's Daniel, but you can call me Dracano if you want."
"Stephanie, but I might as well go by Yevonna now"
"Yevonna, that's the name of the character I thought up once, Yevonna Freespirit, the vixen, She looks just like I do now."
"Ah, same story here, Dracano Sapien…come on, You need a shower and a warm bed."
We walked back to the house, and not once did she release her grip on the crystal, not even as we walked back inside, and to my relief, I heard James speak "Who and what is that?"
"Her name's Yevonna, she got stuck with one of the crystals like I did, I found her in the woods waiting to get mauled by an animal."
"Wait, wait, wait, mauled?"
She looked at the floor, I'm sure if she could blush, she would be "I was confused, I thought I was alone until Daniel came along."
Before I could say anything else, the front door opened, and Teresa and the four kids came in. I was simultaneously glomped by Austin, Crysta, Nathan, and Olivia all at the same time, sending me to the floor as Yevonna stepped out of the way.
I had to wriggle back against a wall as I heard Teresa scoff "Oh great, now he brought his girlfriend over."
Yevonna looked back at me, then over at Teresa "Oh, no I'm not, I mean…I...oh, I just don't know anymore."
She buried her muzzle in her hands, dropping her blue crystal to the floor, and fell back against the wall. I finally managed to get loose from the four kids, ignoring the barrage of questions coming from them. Not to say I didn't care, but this was slightly more important "Guys, wait a sec, I need to talk with your parents for a minute."
"Awwwww" was the resounding reply I got, before I replied "I can play with you guys later, but this is very important."
I thought that they had left until I felt a tug on my tail, and looked down to see Nathan trying to force my tailblade open. "Nathan, you do know that's sharp on the inside, right?"
"I wanna see!"
I tugged it away and opened it with a sound like sliding metal "See, sharp, like a knife, you don't play with knives"
"Ohhh, cool! Can you cut something with it?"
"Maybe later, but not right now."
I went over to Yevonna, and crouched down beside her, noting that as I descended, I was starting to feel a little dizzy. I put my claw on her shoulder, and said as softly as I could "Relax, we'll get through this." Then I looked up to James and Teresa "Can she stay here a while? At least until she can come to terms with this."
Teresa just threw her hands in the air "Sure, we'll open a petting zoo." The sudden burst of crying from Yevonna showed that wasn't exactly fixing the situation. I just shook my head "Teresa, seriously, She doesn't have anywhere else to go…" I turned to face Yevonna "Do you?"
She looked up, sniffling, and shook her head "My dad ran me off with a rifle, he thought I was a werewolf….Actually…"She held up here tail, and parted the fur, showing a burn where the fur had been scorched off "He almost hit me."
I looked back over to Teresa to see her suddenly sympathetic "Fine, whatever, but she's staying in your room."
I looked back to Yevonna only to be knocked back with another hug "Oh thank you, thank you, thank you."
I had to pry her off me "Don't thank me, Thank them." I pointed at Teresa and James, and after wiping a few tears away, she smiled and said "Thank you, it's nice to know not everyone freaks out at the sight of me."
James walked over and grabbed me, giving me a noogie "Hey, we've seen worse"
"ow, ow, ow, ow, scales, ow, ow."
I had to wrench out of his grip before I helped Yevonna back to her feet. She turned to James and asked "Mind if I use your shower? I've been out in the forest for two days."
"Sure, go ahead, it's in there."
Teresa looked her over
"What are you, a size 2?"
"I was a three, but I lost a little weight when I changed, I might fit into a two."
"Well, I have a couple old outfits, I could cut a tail hole in a pair of my old bellbottoms for you."
I couldn't help but grin, slackjawed "You? In bellbottoms? Seriously?"
Teresa just gave me a scowl "I've had a lot of different tastes in clothing."
I just shook my head, laughing, a slight lightheadedness reminded me Yevonna dropped her crystal, so I bent over to grab it, but it was gone. I looked around the floor, but couldn't find it. I was getting worried until I heard a child shout from the bedrooms, then I became horrified.
I quickly sprinted to the bedrooms, and rushed into the room to find Austin and Nathan roughhousing, the crystal on the floor, still glowing. I snapped it up and I had to take several deep breaths so I could ask calmly "Did either of you touch this?"
Austin looked at me, and I could tell he could tell I was pissed, despite working to sound calm "Sorry, I just wanted to get a closer look at it."
"Did it shock you when you touched it?"
I breathed a sigh of relief, intensified by the fact I was losing a little equilibrium "Austin, don't ever, ever, ever touch any glowing crystals, these are very dangerous, you got lucky, you could get hurt very badly if you aren't careful with it."
I just turned and headed back out into the hallway, but I had to stop mid-step as a wave of dizziness hit me and I had to brace myself against the wall. I was getting very confused, Austin had touched the crystal, but hadn't gotten shocked, and I was holding it now, yet still feeling withdrawals.
I came back into the livingroom, and I could hear the shower running, and saw my shirt on the couch. I set her crystal down, and then sat down myself as I started getting a headache "James, while Brenda was here and I was asleep, she hid the crystal. For some reason, Yevonna's doesn't seem to be doing anything for me, if I don't get my crystal back, I'm gonna start getting sicker and sicker, I'm already getting dizzy and lightneaded."
"Well, just how bad will it get?"
"I don't know, I never tested it, last time it felt like I was dying, but I was only half changed, I've been holding out a lot longer this time, but I don't think I can keep it together much longer."
Teresa came over to me and looked into my eyes "Damn, just a sec" she grabbed a flashlight, and shined it in my eyes "your pupil dilation is off, that's not a good sign."
"Well, where do you think she put it? I can usually sense it if it's near and I need it, but I'm not sensing anything right now."
Teresa just put the flashlight back down, and turned to James "Help the boy, I gotta go alter some clothes for Yevonna." And left the room. I Sighed again, I was doing that a lot lately. I just turned to him with a smirk "So what now?"
"We find the crystal."
"No, I mean in general, I've turned into a dragon, I found a fox anthro out in the woods who can't go back home, I'm now dependant on a crystal that I don't even know where it went, and on top of that Brenda is trying to perform exorcisms…I went out to the woods to think and to figure out a solution to my problems, and I ended up finding a new one."
"So Yevonna's a problem, then?"
"A problem I'm perfectly content dealing with, I know she's just as bad off as I am, she needs the support right now."
I suddenly felt queasy, and doubled over "It's getting worse, I really need that crystal back."
James and I spent a good half hour going through every single likely hiding place, but to no avail. We only stopped when I was feeling too drunk to walk, and was forced to sit down "You know, this sucks. I finally become the creature of my dreams, and I'm hooked on that crystal like a crack addict…where's Brenda right now?"
"I see where you're going with this."
He pulled out his cellphone and dialed, cursing as he got voicemail "Brenda, this is James, get to the house now, Daniel's real sick, it has something to do with that crystal."
I laid down and looked up at the ceiling, I was getting really dazed now, and I just felt like drifting off to sleep, my eyelids just kept getting heavier and heavier until I couldn't keep them open anymore and I blacked out completely.