David wearily took her paw and followed Jake, Pammy and Daniel in tow. They crossed into a long hallway filled with nothing but a few clipboards next to numerous metal doors. The lights cast an ominous glow on the bare white walls. There were pockets of light, then darkness, a vast expanse of darkness at the end of the hallway.
David stopped but Jake urged her on with a tug of the paw. "I know it looks scary at first, but you get used to it."
"What's down there?" Pammy asked.
Jake shrugged. "We don't know. They told us not to go down there."
"What if it's the way out?" Pammy questioned.
Daniel shook his head. "No, we thought of that. It's just an all consuming darkness. We went in there the other day, at least I think it was the other day, and it was just...cold. That's the only word I can describe it as. And evil."
The silence returned as their claws clicked against the cool tile floor. They walked for a couple more feet before Jake stopped in front of a metal door that looked exactly like all the other metal doors. He opened it up to a sort of break room like in the office TV shows David used to watch back home. There was a coffee maker, a chrome refrigerator and a fruit bowl, except the fruit was replaced by meat. A metal round table with six seats stood in the middle of the room.
"Here we are," Jake said, opening up her arms to the small room.
"This...looks a little different than I thought it would," David said.
"That's what I thought," Jake replied, "but this is what it looks like and it's pretty nice."
She walked casually over to the meat bowl and picked up a half of a steak and picked at it daintily. Daniel sat down at the table, her breath rising and sinking. Pammy and David sat at the table on either side of Daniel, Pammy's chair sinking slightly under his weight. Jake's chewing was the only noise that held the silence at bay as the two who just transformed tried to decipher what just happened.
Okay, David thought, so I'm a girl. A girl, fox-thing. Why the hell would someone do this?
As if an answer to his question, Jake swallowed a hunk of meat and said, "I think they wanted to make a difference."
"Wanted to make a difference?"
"Yeah," Jake said, coming over to the table and sitting down next to David. "Maybe they wanted to change the world for the better. If you think about it, these bodies are more powerful than our other ones. Who knows, this might actually be a good thing."
Bullshit, David thought. He did not want to get into it with Jake so he kept his mouth shut. But his mind played an argument with itself. If they wanted to make a difference, why not donate to charity? Beach cleanup? Why would they go out of their way to design probably million dollar technology to change people's gender and form?
"So why'd you come?" Daniel asked, breaking David's thought.
Pammy answered, "You guys were missing and the rest of us talked about it and David and I offered to go. We thought you guys were dead or something."
Daniel's eyes wandered down to the floor. David cocked his head and thought to himself, Maybe he thought it was better that they had.
Written by Cole Stryker on 05 April 2015