The next day
Daniel awoke, muttering to him as he wrapped his blanket closer around him.
“Daniel, it’s almost time for school! Come on, you’re not a kid anymore!”
Daniel yelped as he heard his door flung open and the lights turned. He sat up andgroaned, squinting his eyes at his mom.
“Up, up!” she said. “Your friends will be here in fifteen minutes!”
Then she walked out. He yawned and rubbed at one eye sleepily, his ears twitching
He paused. His ears--he reached up and yep they were still there. Not only did this mean that him waking last night hadn’t been a dream, but his visit to the Area 50 and the green glow within was real too. However, that still didn’t explain his ears or the fact that his mother didn’tseem to mind them. Either that, or she just hadn’t noticed.
He got dressed and ready much the same way as he did any other day, except today and for the foreseeable future he had fox ears. They didn’t really get in the way of anything, either. Even when he put his shirt on he flicked them back instinctively so they wouldn’t get caught. The only strange thing he found about that was how comfortable he was with that, as ifhe had done it thousands of times before, but this was his first time and yet it was like old hat.
Soon enough, Daniel stepped out of his room with his bookbag loaded, good to go other than he hadn’t had breakfast yet. Thankfully his mother had prepared some eggs and toast for him to quickly eat, and she didn’t bat an eye as he walked over, fox ears flicking, and sat down to eat. He quietly ate until he was halfway through his meal. Then he paused and looked up to her while she was chopping something for some sort of future meal.
“Mom,” he said. “I have fox ears.”
She looked over to him and smiled.
“No, you don’t,” she said. “You have you ears.”
“Those are your ears, Danny, not fox ears. Otherwise I’d expect some fox would want them back.”
Daniel looked at her and then shrugged. He continued to eat his meal. If his mother didn’t think it was weird, then maybe it wasn’t so weird? But then why did she look normal?
It was a question he would have to save for later. The doorbell rang and his mom looked
“That must be your friends!” she said. “You’d better get going!”
Daniel brought his dishes to the sink and then rushed towards the door. He opened the door and indeed it was his friends who were waiting on him, Pammy at the forefront of the group. She looked at him and smiled as she prodded his shoulder.
“Ha!” she said. “You lost the dare. What did you do, just go home?”
Daniel shook his head. “I went there, I did!” He pointed to his ears. “And here’s something strange that I brought back.”
She looked up to his ears and her expression didn’t change in the least. In fact, she laughed.
“Your ears? What’s so strange about them?”
Daniel blinked and opened his mouth to speak, but there was nothing to say. He wasn’t sure what he could say. It seemed to be an accepted fact that he had fox ears, at least among his friends and family. Maybe other kids at school might find it weird?
Pammy giggled. “You’ve got no excuse, do ya? Ha! You lose!”
Daniel smiled ruefully. “What do I owe you then?”
“A Coke!” she said. “Now come on!”
She ran off and Daniel and the rest of his friends followed. The walk was entirely normal, and that seemed to set the tone for the rest of the day. His friends talked to him like they always did, though they did tease him a bit for failing a double dog dare but he hardly paid it any mind. Instead, he tried to see whether they glanced at his ears strangely from time to time and he waited to hear some whisper about them. He neither saw nor heard anything which meant he truly was the only one that found it strange, and even then they felt familiar. His suspicions were confirmed when he arrived to his first claw and Mr. Bruno called off the roster, not giving him more than a glance when he answered he was present during roll call. To everyone else he had always had fox ears. Did this mean he always did and was just misremembering? Or was the rest of reality faulty in memory? He couldn’t really be sure.
So, he went the rest of the day almost hoping someone would say something, but no one did, of course. When he arrived home he did what he always did; that is, work on somehomework, play some games, and have dinner with his family when the time was ready. He did avoid his friends a little bit, declining to hang out with them after dinner if only because of what happened the night before.
After he had stayed up a little too late playing games, he finally decided to go to sleep. He crawled into his bed and laid down. Before he rested his head on his pillow, he felt at his ears and found that they were there, solidly, tangibly there. He shrugged and laid his head to rest and was soon fast asleep.
Written by skiesofsilver on 16 February 2017