The sign reads
"Welcome all new travellers.
To continue you must go through a series of doors.
After going through you will pick a costume. You will then become a half- human and half that creature.
After a week(100 mins a hour,20 hrs a day,10 days a week) has passed you may morph and get another costume. To start of with you will only be able to become 40% human to 60% human.
If you put on a costume you will then become that creature, be teleported to it's home town and have to wait a week before being able to morph.
After 50 costumes you may change into one of your other costumes and become 30% to 70% human. When changing costumes you must wait at least an hour before you can change costumes again.
100 different species/gender costumes allows you to gender-morph and become 20% to 80% human
200 different species costumes allows you to combine costumes and become 10% to 90% human
400 different species costumes allows you to return to your world with no more morphing
And 800 different species costumes makes a polymorph and allows you to morph outside of this world.
Also if you have a costume like a centaur then the human part will always be human and is counted towards the human percentage.
Any gender/species transformation magic of yours can only change your gender(if you have at least 100 costumes) and the animal part to a different animal.
When you change into a different costume (that you already have) you may teleport to that species home town but you will have the week penalty where you have no costume changes.
If you die while wearing a costume you will be reborn at the local inn (or appropriate location ). If you have more then 100 costumes you will lose the costume you had when you died and go to an appropriate place for your next costume.
If you fail to make it out in 100 years(100 weeks in a year) one of your possible forms will be chosen and you will be permanently stuck in that form(apart from magic) until you die. Also there will be no possibility of going back to your world.
Also, one final note: should you take a female form and become pregnant, you won't be able to change your gender until the child is born, though the other aspects of your form may change (the child will change to match.) That is all, and good luck!
You realise that you have to do what the sign said to do and go through the doors and grab a costume.
Alternatively you could use the key system to determine the room
Written by Catprog on 11 February 2004
You find yourself in what appears to be a glass room suspended high in the sky.
The stairs are blocked by a force field.
You realise you have to go through one of the three sky blue doors numbed 1,2 & 3.
What door do you want?
Written by Catprog on 11 February 2004
You go through the door.
All of a sudden it slams shut and with no handle on this side it appears that you are stuck.
There are two more doors however and both of them have a sign on them saying
Costume room for
So which door do you want
Written by Catprog on 26 February 2004
You go through the door.
All of a sudden it slams shut and with no handle on this side it appears that you are stuck.
There are five costumes in this room, all of them male, all of them are myth air creatures.
Written by Catprog on 26 February 2004
“Meh. Whatever.” You said to yourself before slipping the magical fabrics on, around your arms and legs. Instantly you could feel the cool insides of the material brushing past your skin, almost immediately after, the goosebumps on your skin began to prickle as the hairs along your arm slowly began to attach to the woven material of your costume. “Wait… Which one was this again?” A thought you had moments after sliding the last bit of it around your body, but by that time, the metal zipper had already started closing you into the suit’s tight grasp.
“Aahhhh,” You couldn’t help but growl loudly as you felt your body beginning to change. Slowly, the furs pressed hard enough into your skin that it felt like your flesh was going to be cut into by the sharp edges. It almost felt like every cell in your body was being filtered by the tight weave lining the inside of the costume- it felt like the rest of you was becoming spaghetti as it was pulled firmly through the fabric with all its force.
It was actually your own furry fluff mixing with the brown of the suit. Soon the colors began to mix and change like thick swirls of coffee as the hues began to lighten to the tanned color of a lion’s fur. You could feel your fingernails hardening- thickening into a kind of hard keratin cone. Claws shot straight through the handpaws of the suit and you felt the tendons all along your forearms strengthening to accommodate.
Soon, you could feel your spine lengthening almost painfully as the transformation continued. You slumped over in the limited space you had and soon even your sizable shoulders were slamming into the mirror, the walls, and the door violently as you tried to contain the energy rushing through you from the transformation.
You tried your best to contain yourself within the room, but it was quickly becoming harder and harder for you, the way you slowly started to crouch in the confined cage-like single bathroom stall on the plane. From within, you felt your body slamming hard against each of the four walls as the turbulence shook you up from within. Large furry paws covered your head as you tried your best to not hit the ceiling.
Luckily, the fluff slowly growing around your cranium was enough to help cushion the impact of your head knocking around inside. Despite this, your face still remained human, you could feel the long strands of fluff falling down on the sides of your face like massive mutton chops. The hair on the top of your head became a long wavy fluff, like a lion’s mane. Despite all of this, what confused you the most about your transformation was the way your back muscles ached with pain. It was as if there was some kind of pressure building up behind your back that you couldn’t explain but whenever you tried reaching back to feel what it was, your massive elbows just slammed into the ceiling.
You fought with all your might just to touch the swelling area behind your shoulder blades and in the process, you felt your arm shattering the light above your head. Luckily, the fur formed all around you was enough to allow the glass to easily slide from your powerful muscles; but now, you were left in a completely darkened room with nothing left to illuminate the limited space you were stuck in.
You felt around the room for a moment and realized you were turned around. The energy of your transformation continued to course through your veins, you could feel every muscle within your body throbbing as they grew to sizes far larger than you could have expected. Still, your need to escape was influencing your every decision. Soon, you could feel the shattered glass of the mirror, the small damp surface of the sink, and eventually, you found your way to the doorknob.
“Click!” rang out as you tried turning the doorknob. “Click” It rang out again as you tried one more time. Still it seemed like you were stuck behind the hard plastic surface of the door. You put your ear against it to see what you could hear from the other side.
Everything sounded normal to you for a moment, then suddenly, another bout of turbulence began to shake you up from inside the small container. At this point, you were starting to feel like some kind of James Bond drink- Shaken, not stirred-. You could feel your footpaws lifting from the ground as if there was something more going on. Soon your sensitive ears began to pick up on something more happening, but your senses were still adjusting to the transformation.
It almost sounded like people on the outside were screaming, loud bangs were ringing out from outside of the stall- gunshots maybe? You didn’t seem to take much notice, you were almost completely distracted with keeping yourself upright as it started to feel like the force of gravity was wavering in and out. For a moment, you felt weightless, as if you were falling, before slamming your head hard against the ceiling once again.
Soon, your night vision started kicking in, and you were able to use the limited light filtering from underneath the door to check your surroundings. In the moment, you were completely panicked, so you didn’t realize that you had locked the door on the way in. Still, the situation felt a bit too dire for you to really care about your dumb fumble.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 01 December 2021
With your two massive fingers, you gently grabbed the notch and began to twist it. It was almost difficult for you. “Maybe the door was just… Jammed?” You thought to yourself as you tried turning it with all of your might. It felt like there was some kind of change-in-air pressure that was holding it closed, and soon, you found yourself ramming into the door with your newly developed and much more powerful shoulder.
It only took one, two, and then three powerful slams of your body to finally break the door down. When you stepped outside of the plane, to your surprise, everything seemed to have changed. Now, you found yourself standing in a small cockpit of what looked like some kind of military-style helicopter.
When looking back at the bathroom, you realized it had changed into some kind of small closet sort of space. “That’s weird” you thought to yourself, remembering the space being completely different moments before you excited the room. “Goddarn!” You yelled out as you looked into the cockpit of the chopper.
The pilot was flying around sporadically- like there was some kind of issue with the rotors of the machine.
“No, No-no-no! Get him outta here! Abort abort!” You noticed that the pilot was lacking a copilot as he pulled upwards on the handle as hard as he could. You turned to look around the much more limited space of this aircraft and wondered what could have happened. Soon, you finally got your answer. The other young man was knocked out cold in the back of the craft as if his body was thrown like a helpless ragdoll into the tail of the aircraft. His limp body still twitched- showing subtle signs of life- but you could tell the situation was dire the way he slid back and forth as the helicopter was thrown back and forth.
You could see that the pilot was tense, sweating profusely, and completely enamored with the task at hand.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 02 December 2021
Instantly, your body leaped into action and you strapped yourself into the seat right next to him. He looked a bit upset by you- a complete stranger- taking control of his chopper, but in a way he also seemed a bit appreciative.
“Ahh, the heck with it… We’re all gonna die anyway!” he yelled over at you. “You ever fly one of these things before?” he asked you.
“Uhh! Just tell me what to do!” You responded before helping to pull up the nose of the aircraft. The force of the craft going down was immense. It felt like you were forced to hoist hundreds of pounds of weight upwards just to get it to stabilize, but your newfound strength- and the intense rush of adrenaline helped you power through things.
“That’s right…!” he commented. You could tell, that was just his way of thanking you for the help. “Here! Click those!” He pointed up for a moment and when your eyes fell on whatever his outstretched fingers were directed towards. Your head began to spin as your senses took in a plethora of different buttons and levers. In the moment of panic, you wondered what exactly he was pointing at. It was all a mix and match of different blinking lights and colors, so you tried your best to guess what he was talking about.
At that moment, smoke began to fill the cabin and red lights began to flash just as your eyes began to focus on your decision. The black fog burned your eyes and filled your lungs, causing you to cough- just barely letting go of the controls.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 03 December 2021
Your powerful feline eyes focused on a specific switch ‘disengage’ as well as a few of the flashing red buttons. ‘Retract’ and ‘Anchor’. For some reason, these things seemed to make the most sense to you. You steeled your mind for the task at hand- despite the ground quickly coming closer to the chopper as it turned through the sky, just barely in your control.
“AahhH!” you screamed as it began to shake around even more.
“Attaboy kiddo!” He yelled back over at you. The pilot’s eyes were still completely focused on the ground below.
“W-What did I do?!” You responded. It didn’t seem like he could have heard you, his headset was mounted tightly on his head and the massive change in air pressure made it almost impossible for you to hear him as well. You just continued to pull upwards, helping him to maintain stability as the helicopter quickly careened into the ground.
“Maday! We’re going down! We’re going down. Charleston to HQ. Mark location. We’re headed straight towards the tombs!” From all of the banter, that was one of the only things you caught clearly- even with your powerful feline ears twitching above your head.
“The tombs?” You thought to yourself. “Does he mean…” A cold lump of anxiety sank in your stomach as you wondered what he could have meant by that. For a moment, you thought you were all doomed. Your eyes scanned the horizon, wondering if this was the last sunset you were ever going to see. Suddenly, you realized what he was talking about as you gazed outside of the window.
It was a bit hard for you to actually comprehend the view, as the chopper struggled to stay oriented. Spinning out of control made it much harder to see the giant pyramid shaped structure in the distance.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 04 December 2021
“What’s going on!” you asked the pilot. Belting out the words as loud as you could just to get him to hear you.
“One second… Yeah… Gotcha…. We may just make it…” He continued. “Listen. I don’t know you. Or how you even got here…” He continued to look out the window, slowly bringing the craft closer and closer to the ground until you both were able to see a clearing within some dense foliage. “Look! We’re aiming for there!” He yelled out, pointing at the visible landing site. “We call back to headquarters after we retrieve the goods… But we have to survive first!” he continued. “Once we find the others…” For a moment, he looked a bit concerned. “If we find them… And they’re healthy. We can continue our mission.”
“Wait a minute… A mission?” you thought to yourself. “I know nothing about a mission…” You thought for a moment, wondering what was up with this costume. “I thought I was supposed to know EVERYTHING about this world after being transported… How come all I could remember is…” You sat there for a moment and realized what was going on.
“We have to go deep into those tombs, grab a specific one… Apparently a sarcophagus.” He continued as you both rapidly approached the clearing.
“And I was supposed to thwart that mission.” You remembered.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 05 December 2021
You realized, you were nothing more than a stowaway thief, given your own mission to pillage whatever they were trying to retrieve from right under their noses. Suddenly you could feel the pressure in your back churning and stretching your flesh uncomfortably. It felt like something was soon to burst straight out from underneath.
At this point, the chopper was moments from the ground, and you could see the man unbuckling his seatbelt before quickly checking over a hefty pack on his back.
“This is where I get off.” The pilot said before pressing a large red button. A small hatch on the side opened up, and for a moment, he looked back at the passed out member in the back before leaping from the chopper.
Your eyes followed his, before you watched him take a final bound from the aircraft. You took a quick moment to watch the large round object descending slowly beneath you. Then, you looked back at his passed out teammate.
In that instant, you had the sudden urge to be generous. Much kinder. Maybe even play the part to gain their trust a bit more- just to help with your mission. You could feel something tearing through your back as you stretched one final time. To your surprise, large feathery wings bursted from your back.
It was a good thing that happened, because you were only a few hundred feet from the ground as you dashed to the back to grab the passed-out body of the copilot. You felt absolutely amazing when your muscular arms outstretched- finally freeing the feathery arms behind them as you moved in perfect synchronicity to grab his limp body. In one smooth motion, you did another powerful dash out of the door of the copter as you gripped tightly around the passenger’s chest.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 06 December 2021
You spent a moment flapping your powerful wings as you glided past the landing zone. The sound of the chopper slamming into the dense jungle nearly jolted you out of your hypnotized state, but still the rush of flying for the first time on your own was something you had never experienced in your life. A tingling spread down your spine as you felt the muscles around it flexing to keep you above ground.
When looking down, you could see the tiny head of the pilot looking up at you from so far down. He looked like just a dot as his rounded military hat pulled back just to watch your broad-wings stretched across the sky. You could see his mouth gaping open in amazement as you glided around with your shirt completely torn off from the force of your wings bursting through. You slowly glided your way to the ground, taking the time to scour out the area as well, and you could see a few other members of the military kicking their legs- stuck in trees as they kicked their legs helplessly to get out. They seemed pretty stuck, but you breathed a sigh of relief because of their survival but a wave of anxiety came over you when you figured that you’d have to eventually meet them all.
After your moment of alone-time, high up in the air, you slowly swooped down to meet the pilot as he began to round up the parachute fabric spread all around the jungle floor.
“Geez Mate” He said as your wings caused the air to swirl around him. “If I knew ya had those… You could have helped us out long before.” he joked. Something about him seemed a bit nervous but the moment he saw you had saved his co-pilot, he became instantly grateful.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 07 December 2021
You just left your partner to die?” you asked him nobelly. The pilot almost seemed to take offense to your question.
“I wouldn’t have if I had the chance.” He continued. “You don’t know what our training has to prepare us for! That man is my best friend… That’s why I’m so grateful you saved him.” He immediately went to the other man’s side and began tending to his wounds.
You were surprised when he took off the other man’s helmet to see that he was a shaggy old German shepherd. The canine’s eyes were rolled into the back of his head, and his tongue sagged out of his mouth as you passed off his limp body into the pilot’s arms. “Buddy!” He called out “Buddy, are you okay!” He continued, before reaching into his shirt pocket and bringing out a small vial of something unrecognizable.
Instantly, the pilot took off his helmet as well. A much larger, harrier, yet younger husky used his sharp canines to rip open the small bottle between his gloved fingers. He held the substance in front of the German Shepherd’s muzzle and soon, his eyes flashed open with surprise. The old grey muzzle reacted as if he was still operating the plane. “Hey hey! Buddy, It’s alright.” The pilot tried to calm his friend as much as possible.
“Oh… Aahh.” The G-Shep looked relieved. “We made it…” he sighed heavily and laid back in the pilot’s arms.
“Yeah! Haha! Thanks to my skillful piloting, I saved you.” you sat for a moment and listened.
“Wait a minute. He didn’t do anything to save his friend? I guess he was a pretty good pilot for buying us all that time.” You didn’t let a single word past your lips. “Even then… If it wasn’t for my wings, we both would have been toast.” The thought droned in your mind for a second as the two canines wagged their tails together, excited to finally be safe.
The German Shepard didn’t seem to care that his chute hadn’t even deployed- still compact within the pack on his back. Your wings twitched in annoyance, but you didn’t seem to want to break up their special little moment with your micromanaging.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 08 December 2021
“What about the others?” you asked. “Don’t we need to go find them as well?” The question seemed to shock the two men out of their combined happiness. Their expressions quickly melted back into a mix of fear and concern as they looked at each other, and back to you.
The pilot stood up, leaving his friend on the ground to continue his recovery.
“Well look at you soldier!” he patted you on your bare muscular shoulder muscle and continued in an almost condescending tone. “Doing our job better than us I see?” He continued. “I don’t even know this guy!?” he blurted out in a joking manner as he turned to his friend. You and the German Shepherd exchanged quick glances before he continued. “Do you recognize this one? Not even in any gear? Weird…” It almost sounded like he was patronizing you in one way or another.
“In the cabin, you detailed how important it was to regroup with the others? Do you not agree?” you continued.
“Yeah… He’s right.” The German Shepherd agreed with you. Causing your smile to grow across your face.
“Oh yeah?” The husky joined in. “Well why don’t you go check the area for them?” The powerful beast boxed you in the shoulder. “You have the wings, you should be fast enough to just go and bring them back here.”
You thought for a moment. It was already enough for you to carry out the Co-pilot. Despite your muscular wings, the most you could have done was glide downwards. You wondered how much force it would have taken for you to actually lift someone up. It took you a good long moment for you to come to a conclusion.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 09 December 2021
“Okay. I’m fine with that” you replied. The Husky almost seemed shocked by your decision. It was almost as if he was just joking, and your quick agreement must have caught him off guard.
“Oh? Well I ain’t complaining!” He continued. “I’ll stay behind and take care of my old Buddy here! Make sure he’s fine”
“Yeah.” The German Shepherd struggled to his feet. “We can maybe set up camp, scour the area or something.” He continued as he coughed up a droplet of blood.
“No!” The husky barked. “You need to get your rest. I can take care of all of that. Just lay here, okay?” He continued, trying to get his friend to sit once again.
“Duke! Come on…” He jerked his arm away from the other canine. “I can handle myself… We both had the same amount of training, I just need to walk this off.” Before they had the time to finish their little argument, you spread your wings wide and with one powerful bound you leaped up high into the air.
The feeling of the air between your wings was absolutely divine, like stretching out your toes in the warm sand, but this time, the way your feathered finger-tips caught the wind, felt like an amazing stretch as you held your body firmly against the air blasting all around you. Flying was almost like a high to you as you carried yourself higher and higher just to survey the surrounding areas.
Luckily for you, you had already taken a good glimpse of where you had seen the other parachutes having been deployed in the area.
“This way?” You thought to yourself as you veered down to the south. Soon you made it past the high-tops of the canopies making up most of the dense jungle environment. It was pretty easy for you to see the massive fabric coverings scattered around the treetops. You took a moment to swoop around to see how many chutes had been deployed. “One… Two… Three…” That seemed to be about it.
You began to swoop down to rescue them and wondered how many had already regrouped. Unlike before, many of them seemed like they had made it out of the trees at this point. “I wonder if they’re okay.” you thought to yourself before coming down and perching on top of the thick canopies surrounding them.
It took a moment for you to finally see past the thick brush, especially due to their camouflaged military outfits. Your cat-like eyes scanned slowly back and forth until you were able to pick up the subtle movements from below you. “Is that…” You thought to yourself, wondering if it was just the wind, or if it was actually the platoon you were looking for.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 11 December 2021
Instead of just sitting there and wondering, you took your time to carefully make your way through the branches. You hopped from one to another, making your way slowly down. Clawed fingertips dragged down the thick bark of every tree you slid down. With each powerful bound of your legs, you could feel your wings spreading open to catch a bit more wind, slowing you down as you descended.
“Hey!” you called down, before you were close enough for them to notice you. “Is everyone down there okay?” You were almost surprised by the strength of your voice as you belted out your calls down below. They seemed just as startled as you from the way they looked up, confused- their eyes wandered around high above in the trees just to get an idea of where the strange voice was coming from.
When you saw the sparkling barrels of their guns scanning around, you started to panic slightly before deciding it was about time to reveal yourself. Quickly, you glided down to the ground and began to greet them. The group was defensive as they continued to follow you with their sights.
“Who are you!” One voice rang out.
“No worries. I am a friend.” You held out your hands, as well as your enormous feathery wings. “I was sent by… Duke, and Buddy, to come and find you guys.” For a moment, your eyes looked over the small group, two of them stood, and the other two were sitting on the ground, as if they had some kind of injury. The other standing person began to speak to you.
“Who are you, even?” They asked. In that instant, your plan began to rush through your head once more. You knew you had to be sneaky about things. Of course, it would be a bit odd to tell them you were a stowaway, but there was so much different about you, that you could have taken that alone and ran with that, just to manipulate them.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 12 December 2021
“I am a god, a saviour.” You said in your most heroic tone, stretching out your wings dramatically just to impress them a bit more. Your plan seemed to work, despite them having a bit of skepticism the way they looked over you. Slowly, one by one, they all took off their helmets. Three felines, and a canine. A lioness- similar to you but with the furry muzzled face of a traditional lion- unlike you. The other two were large fluffy house-cats, most likely some kind of maine coone mixes. Finally, the third and final canine of the platoon looked like a Golden retriever. He and the lioness sat on the ground as the two maine coons stood, watching you in shock.
You could tell they were a bit shocked by your appearance. You were a sphynx- the kind with a human face, wings, and the body of a powerful muscular lion. To both humans and furries, you would have been a particularly interesting sight. Still, you stood your ground, keeping your lie going as you continued to manipulate the little group. “I helped Duke land the plane, saving Buddy, and now, my next task is to help you all regroup with the rest of them.” You smiled brightly and reached out a hand towards the more dominant maine coon to gain their trust.
“Stand down.” he told the other one. “I think if he was here to hurt us, he would have done it already.” He continued. The others looked over your powerful shirtless body. Pectorals throbbing with life as your wings flexed slowly, open and closed. Your wingspan was enough to consume them all with their enormous feathery masses, but you continued to keep your distance- just in case.
“Where’s Duke! And buddy?” The lioness asked you before cringing in pain. She tried moving around a bit but the injury to her leg was still gushing with blood.
“Hey! Take it easy.” the Retriever said gently to the lioness. “Yeah. Are they anywhere nearby?” the canine continued. “We saw the chopper go down, over that way.” He pointed in the direction you came from. One of the two fluffy cats cut in and finished for him.
“Yeah! There was a big explosion. I don’t think anyone could have survived that.” You began to explain.
“They made it out just in time.” The lioness picked up from where you were. Her beautiful eyes blinked slowly as she asked.
“Even Buddy?” She seemed particularly concerned. “He was out cold when we first jumped.” you looked a bit surprised.
“Yeah… You ditched the plane after he passed out?” You asked them. The two felines nodded and spoke over each other like siamese twins.
“Duke said he would land the plane safely.”
“But then the tail began to spin.”
“Wasn’t much we could have done after that,”
“Yeah, he had to ditch, but none of us could have carried Buddy.”
“We thought he was a gonner.” You nodded slowly, listening to their story and processing it as they fed it to you.
“Well.” You began again. “We should probably head back that way, before it gets too dark.”
“Is it very far?” The retriever asked. His leg looked the worst of the two, but he still seemed to have enough energy and positive attitude to get him through- despite some visible bone sticking out of his torn flesh.
“Not very far.” You considered your wings. “If you’re flying I guess.” Once again, you considered how tiring it would have been to carry one of them back. “I can help with that… But I don’t know how long I could go for.” At this point, the adrenaline began to wear off, and your body began to feel sore from the battering you too from the plane.
“That’s alright, I know the boys can probably work together to help us.” The lioness added, looking over at the two fluffy maine coons. They looked back at her, almost reluctantly but still agreed. The lioness cringed in pain once more and you realized that her injuries were just as bad as the canines.
For a moment, you pondered which one you could have been able to help. The lioness was much larger than the dog, so it would have been more trouble to take her there. She seemed to be the most affected by her injuries though- so maybe it would have been better to bring her yourself. Help cheer her up.
Thenagain, the canine’s leg was pouring with blood and maybe he couldn’t have lasted on the whole journey on foot. The decision for you was a pretty tough one.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 14 December 2021
You decided to take the feline. Though it was a more difficult situation to lift her heavy muscular body into the air, you realized that she was probably in more urgent need of care. Her legs were mangled, blood soaking through her rough military suit- still heavy with the kevlar padding underneath. She grasped onto your powerful shoulders as she crawled into your arms.
“Thank you.” She said as she allowed herself to melt into you. It was clear that she was deeply appreciative of your decision. “I’ll be sure to make this up to you, one day.” She said to you just before you took off.
“Be safe guys!” You heard the other teammates calling out to you as you began to slowly ascend into the sky. At first it was a bit hard for you to find your balance in the air. Not only from this only being your third flight but also from the weight of her body, the equipment, and the heavy armored military outfit she was wearing. For a while, there was a bit of tension between you two as you silently worked your way high above the canopy. It took all the focus you had just to flex your massive wings up and down hard enough to carry your combined weight.
Most of the ride was silent, you could tell the feline was particularly nervous about being so high in the air as she clung to you. Her whiskers tickled the short coarse fur on your chest as she brought her head closer to you- clinging on as tightly as she could. At this point, you were still growing used to the feeling of careening through the sky, now it was as if you were barreling through the air with far more force from the included weight of your reluctant passenger.
The two of you clutched onto each other so tightly that you could feel her rapid heart beat against yours. It was clear she could tell you were also nervous about what you were doing.
“Is he that nervous around chicks? Or is this actually his first time doing this…” the lioness thought to herself, without giving you any indication about the source of her anxiety. “Well… Too late to stop now.” She reassured herself as she watched you looking around for the place you first came from.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 15 December 2021
“It’s okay. We’re almost there.” You told her, as you scanned the area, gliding just above the bushy tops of trees. For a moment, you wondered if you truly trusted in yourself, or if you were just saying that to keep her calm. “It would be bad if she freaked out up here... “ you thought to yourself. “Best to just keep her relaxed and focus on finding your way back.” Reassuring yourself as you seeked the clearing where you first landed.
“Okay… I trust you.” She responded. At this point, you could feel the powerful lioness beginning to calm down. Her tense muscles began to loosen in your arms- of course, still not enough for her to fall from your grasp- but enough for you to tell that she wasn’t going to freak out, raking her sharp claws against your shirtless body. You started focusing on her beating heart as it gradually began to slow; you even saw her closing her eyes- a true signifier of trust between you two.
Knowing this complete stranger trusted you helped to ease your mind. You were completely focused as you spread your broad wings wide and glided smoothly further throughout the mysterious jungle surrounding you. Something about the confusing repeating environment began to look familiar to you. It was as if you were guided by some kind of divine force as you quickly regained your directional bearings.
Almost instantly thereafter, you could see a distant divot in the trees- a little cut-away just ahead of you. That was it! You found your way back to the clearing. Looks like you both really were almost there.
“There it is,” you said, softly- gently to the powerful soldier. Her body still limp with exhaustion from the crash. You felt her head turning in your arms but you maintained completely focused on the landing, which was one of the hardest things for you to get a hold of with these new wings of yours.
“I can see it!” She said quietly. “You got this.” Reassuring you. Slowly you swooped down close enough to see Duke and Buddy staring up at you again. They were waving their arms for your attention. You saw them watching you struggle, almost faltering as you descended the final few meters before touching down. The sheer power of your wings alone nearly knocked them off the ground, their fur whipped wildly from beneath their protective uniforms.
“Hey! He got Casey!” They shouted. You could feel the lioness moving slightly. Possibly waving down to them, signaling that she’s fine. Slowly you flapped your wings, gliding around the open space just to bring her down for a gentle landing. The canines watched, impressed with the dexterity of your wings as they stretched and flexed, causing you to glide gently to the bottom. You felt your legs flexing from the stress as you finally touched down with bent knees to help cushion the impact of your landing.
“Hey Duke, Buddy.” Casey greeted the others as you slowly laid her between them. “This guy is awesome!” She mentioned. Duke walked up to you and placed a hand on your shoulder, patting you on the back happily.
“You made a good decision.” he said to you. “She’s an amazing soldier!” He barked in approval. Both of their tails wagged as you stood up again. Your height much taller than theirs. You pulled your human-features upwards in a smile as you nodded your head back at them.
“The others are fine.” The lioness said. “Barley is hurt too though.” She continued. “But Jamison and Beck are in good shape.” You listened to her rattling off the names of their team, taking careful note to remember who was who.
“Duke… Buddy… Two canines. Jamison and beck… The twin felines. Barley was the third canine… and Casey.” You couldn’t help but smile. “Casey…”
“Speaking of.” Duke butted in. “We never got your name, stranger?” he asked you, causing the other two to turn and face you.
“Yeah! You’re doing so much for us, it’s the least we could do in return.” You heard Buddy’s joyful high-pitched voice yipping in your direction. You took a moment to introduce yourself.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 17 December 2021
After you were done, introducing yourself, you figured it’d be best to tell them about what you had learned from the others. You paused for a moment, thinking carefully about what you were going to say.
“Nice to finally get acquainted.” Duke shook your hand with a hand on your shoulder.
“Nice name!” Buddy said cheerfully, wagging his tail despite everything that happened. He looked to be making a good recovery. Still, it was the lioness’s condition that worried you the most.
“Thank you for everything. Hero!” She concluded only moments before you started giving them your piece.
“The others.” You started, catching their attention once again. “Jamison, Beck, and Barley are back by the crash site.” They watched you intently as you brought up the rest of their platoon. “They wanted me to bring someone back., apparently the strongest member, but Barley was also hurt as well but his condition wasn’t as bad as hers.” You concluded.
“What was the plan?” Buddy asked. “How did they all decide to get back?” He continued.
“Well, the twins were going to try making it through the jungle to meet us here.” You replied. “I don’t think it’d be an easy trek for them,” You flexed your wings. “Considering these.”
“Why don’t you just fly them all back as well?” Duke butted in. “You seem like a pretty strong swimmer!” He joked with you, though nobody else seemed to laugh at it. Still, you pondered the idea for a moment before responding.
“It was already exhausting just getting Casey here.” You started. “But I’ll consider it, after resting up a bit.” You considered.
“It could be a matter of life or death.” Duke responded. “Are you really feeling that tired?” he asked.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 18 December 2021
You all settled in for a while, the sun started to set beyond the horizon, painting the sky a beautiful shade of deep purple as twilight began engulfing the sky. It was Casey’s suggestion to start a fire. As Duke and buddy crouched around the tinder, working on getting a spark, they directed you to help fan the flames. You moved your exhausted wings back and forth to generate a bit of a gust, but it was still nothing compared to how hard you worked to lift the lioness’s body through the air.
It was an easy decision for you. Your body was burning with lactic acid as it built up in your muscles. The feeling of your back flexing from movement made you realize how truly sore you had actually become from these daunting tasks. You steeled your mind to tell them your final decision after the fire was set up.
“This is pretty nice.” You started. “I think I’ll sit this one out for a while.” your powerful voice rang out through the emptiness of the clearing.
“Really?” Duke was the first to respond. “So do you think one of us should go back to check up on them?” he continued. “It’s getting pretty late.”
“Duke, carrying two people here definitely seems exhausting.” Casey responded. “Plus it’s not like this gear is made of feathers or anything.” The lioness prodded.
“I’m feeling a bit better.” Buddy said. “I mean, I don’t mind making the trip there.” He continued, volunteering himself to check up on the others.
“I don’t want you going alone, Buddy.” the German Shepherd responded. “I don’t mind going with you.” He finished.
“No, it’s fine. I don’t mind going it alone.” He replied happily as he stretched.
“Maybe we should wait out for them a bit more.” Casey added. “I mean, these aren’t first level operations. I know they’re skilled team-members.” She looked at you for suggestions. “I don’t think it was too far, right?”
“It wasn’t all that far.” You remembered. “Yeah it may be some distance, but it should be doable by foot.” All of you sat around and pondered your next decision.
“Maybe a quick bite to eat will help us decide. After the sun sets, then we can start being worried.” Buddy added. “We all have pretty good night vision. Especially those felines. So I think the best priority is getting a bit of rest.”
“Pushing ourselves is never good. Especially in this setting.” You added, building your case. You agreed with the golden retriever as Duke started bringing out some of the team’s rations. Everyone began to watch him taking a quick inventory of the supplies in his bag, looking almost as if to ask how the supplies were fairing. Duke took a quick moment to check everything before rattling off what they had remaining after the crash. Just a few guns, some rations for a couple days, as well as a few of the leftover notes and supplies needed for them to carry out their mission. It all seemed to go over your head as your mind focused on what you all were going to do about the others.
You were happy about the final decision, appreciating the extra moment of physical and mental rest before you were potentially- reluctantly volunteered as everyone’s personal chauffeur. It didn’t take long before the sunshine quickly slipped from the darkening sky. Still, you watched the colorful horizon morph from color to color as they seeped between gradients.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 19 December 2021
“Okay. It’s getting dark now.” Buddy started. “Did you guys want me to go check in on them?” He asked curiously. You could tell the energy had finally returned to him as he perked up to offer his assistance.
“I don’t know.” You added. The group gave you a bit of a sideways look as you suggested leaving their friends in the jungle, by themselves, after dark. “I trust they’re doing fine. Why don’t we just give it a bit more time.” Everyone reluctantly considered it as they all rested among each other. “Maybe just a bit more?” Suddenly, Duke butted in.
“You think we should just leave our teammates out there?” he barked loudly. “Come on now, you’re not trying to sabotage us, are you?” This actually caused a bit of a reaction from the others.
“Woah there! Why the accusation?” Casey replied. “If he were trying to do that, he would have just left Buddy AND me for dead!” She made a good point.
“I’m just saying.” You added. “Why should we waste our energy when we need as much as we can get to move forward?” You made a good point, making them consider your words once more.
“He’s right.” Buddy said. “I know I’m just anxious to check in on them, but I think he has a good point. We’re going to need to be able to handle whatever we do after they regroup with us.” The suggestion of their fellow platoon members seemed to make a bit of a difference in how they saw the situation. Plus, everyone was still in a pretty rough condition considering everything they all had just gone through.
“I have faith in them.” You added, making them feel more secure in their decision. To your surprise, they all started letting their guard down. It was clear that they all truly believed that the others could handle themselves, and surprisingly, they actually did.
It was about an hour after the sun had fully set. The environment had become dark and cold- the only light for miles around other than the stars was the fire you helped Duke light earlier. The flames were roaring and were nowhere near close to dying out. You figured, this was enough to help signal to the others that you all were here.
For a moment, you had doubted the directions you had given them, wondering if you were just unsure about the direction you had gone. Though after a while, your night-vision eyes focused deep through the thicket of bramble covering the jungle flooring. You picked up a bit of movement- a slow lumbering type of pattern as the dark shapes moved towards you.
You hopped up, deciding to check things out. This signaled to the others that almost instantly, something was different.
“What’s wrong?” Casey asked you. All buddy and Duke did was watch the spot where your eyes were facing along with you.
“It’s them!” Buddy was the first to catch their scent, despite them being upwind of you all. “I know their figure anywhere.”
Your eyes made out the three familiar figures as well and allowed the excited dog to run ahead to meet his other friends.
“Buddy!” You heard a voice calling out from the darkness.
“You’re back!” the golden dog barked.
“He’s not doing the best, but still alive.” You heard another voice return.
“Here, let’s get you rested up!” You heard the sentiment and immediately gestured for Duke to help you set up another pallet for the more injured dog to lay on. The others smiled at you as they slowly made their way to the fire.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 20 December 2021
Part of you wanted to leave the group, now that they were all together. In a way, you wanted to remain the mysterious stranger, wavering in and out of their personal story like the tide. In another way, you thought about your mission, wondering if it would be better to stick with them for a while.
“They could lead me right to my target.” You thought to yourself. “I just have to play my cards just right.” Your mind continued to race for the first time about the main reason you were there: It was all for the sake of your mission. “I need to gain their trust.”
Despite your reluctancy. You decided to camp out with them for the night- maybe even longer. After weighing the pros and cons of your situation, you realized it could have been better to stick with them.
“Does anyone need any medical attention?” You asked them as they all cozied up around the fire.
“I think I’ll be fine.” Barley said. “I think my ankle is just a bit twisted up.” you took a moment to examine his injury.
“Maybe we should find something to splint your leg with.” Your suggestion impressed the others.
“Looks like we have a medical professional over here!” Duke barked jokingly.
“Well, he is some kind of…” One of the housecats started. “Well… What are you, even?” He continued.
“Some kind of god, as he said earlier. I suppose?” The other cat replied. Duke and Buddy looked at you, fascinated by your particularly different features.
“Oh?” Duke replied. “Is that how you ended up in our copter?” He continued. In the moment, you realized that was the story you had told the others. There wasn’t much time for you to reconcile your story, or even come up with some kind of explanation. You had to quickly figure out how you were going to move forward from here.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 21 December 2021
Continue the lies.
You realized the only way to gain their trust, achieve their alliship, and ultimately continue your mission was to make them believe that you were truly out to help them. You thought for a moment before nodding your head in agreement.
“Yes.” You started. “I’m a hybrid being of this land.” The words seemed to spill out from your mouth almost naturally. “I’m a guardian spirit of the jungle, and I was sent to help you out in any way I could with your mission.” You started. It seemed like most of the others had believed you without a second thought. Except for Duke, who watched you from the sidelines with skepticism.
“Oh really now?” the German Shepherd asked with a questioning look spread across his muzzle. “Then why was it too much for you to go check out the others?” his arms were folded in a defensive pose.
“Buddy was right.” You commented, looking over at the golden retriever’s bright yellow fur. “I foresaw that they were going to be alright. The rest of you needed to recover and if you all didn’t get appropriate rest, that would have compromised your mission even more.” You took the moment to question them further as they looked at you, impressed. “What exactly was your mission?” In the moment, you even felt impressed with the lies you were spewing.
“It’s just a simple retrieval mission.” Duke jumped to respond. “Most of the information was classified… Even for us. But it all has to do with that pyramid over there.” He pointed in a direction opposite of the deepest part of the jungle, where the others had come from. “I know you had a good view of it when we were going down.” He concluded.
“Yeah!” Buddy interjected. “Duke was supposed to be the leader of this mission. Sadly, all of our equip and the rest of the directions had burned up with the copter.” He looked around sadly.
“A few of us have some ideas of what we have to do, but all of the maps were there as well. We had left our packs in the copter because we needed the space for our parachutes.” The stripped cat replied.
Written by Drifting Dragon on 22 December 2021