Midnight. They always came at midnight. The chimes from the old grandfather clock in the den jolted Daniel out of his restless dreams. It wasn't the chimes that woke him so much as the knowledge that They were coming. It was the same horrifying ritual, every single night.
The room was illuminated by an eerie pale green glow. Three figures in haz-mat suits stood around his bed. One of them held a large briefcase, another held a gun, and the third--the apparent leader, from the way he acted--was making entries into a large handheld computer. Daniel tried to escape, to run, to even move, but some unseen force held him in place, as immobile as the bed itself. The leader looked up from his computer and signaled to the one holding the briefcase, who set the case down and began to open it. Daniel strained to see its contents, but couldn't from his position. If only he could move...
The leader reached forward, grabbed the bedcovers and--
The shrill blast of Daniel's alarm clock filled the room. He'd had that dream again, the same one he'd been having every night for nearly a month. Except that it didn't feel like a normal dream. It felt more like a memory, but one that had been partially forgotten. Anyway, Dan had more important things to worry about, so he pushed whatever it was aside for the moment. Today was the last day of school, finally. All he had to do was survive his last few final exams, and he'd be home free. He wasn't about to let a creepy dream get him down.
Dr. DiCaoz glanced over his biology classroom. "Is anybody still working on the final?" he asked tiredly. He paused for a moment, then said, "If everybody is finished, you may talk quietly amongst yourselves for the remainder of the period." As the class erupted in chatter, he went back to nursing his hangover.
Daniel loved his biology class. It wasn't just that he was good at it, or that it was the last class of the day. By some bit of luck or fate, he happened to be in the same class as his four closest friends, Gassan, David, Pammy, and Jake. Gassan, David, and Pammy had become absurdly popular since coming to high school. Gassan was Lebanese and therefore "exotic," David was a star swimmer, and Pammy was a cheerleader. In retrospect, popularity was an inevitability. To the other popular kids, Jake an avid follower of the Furry subculture (he called it a craze, but nobody else did) and Daniel, the introspective writer, were social liabilities. Still, Gassan, David, and Pam never let their newfound "friends" keep them away from Jake and Dan. Privately, Daniel was grateful that he had managed to befriend the four people who appeared to be immune to high school drama.
"So, what'd you guys think?" Pammy whispered.
"I'm pretty sure Dr. Di is a nutcase," Gassan answered quickly. He was met with a chorus of approval from his companions.
"Anyway," Pam continued, "are we having our annual Thank-God-The-Schoolyear's-Over party tonight?"
"I can't go," Jake said, "I've got a convention."
"I can't go either," said David, "My dad's taking me camping. He's on a back-to-nature kick."
"I'm visiting my grandma," Gassan said. Pammy rolled her eyes.
"Alright," she sighed, "when do you guys get back?"
"Sunday, but it'll be late."
"So," Pammy continued, "is Monday night alright with everyone?"
The days passed quickly. By the time Monday arrived, he had gone an entire weekend without his mysterious dreams. He was mostly relieved, but part of him wished the visitors would come back so he could find out what they were up to.
The streets were charged with an eerie calm. A summer storm was coming. As Daniel reached Pam's door, he couldn't help but feel a strange foreboding. Something was decidedly wrong. He rang the bell.
"Come in," called Pammy. Dan opened the door and found friend sitting on the floor in a tidy circle. They were all staring at him, an unsettling hunger in their eyes. "We are playing Truth or Dare," Pammy intoned mechanically. "Please, join us. Truth or Dare?"
"Please choose Dare," Gassan said, in the same unearthly voice.
"The Truth is never any fun," agreed David, still in the same tone. Throughout the exchange, none of the four took their eyes off of Daniel.
"Is everything alright?" he asked. "You all seem...different."
Pammy answered in the same monotone as before: "We are collectively unnerved at a series of recurring dreams we have been having. Perhaps you too are experiencing these visions?"
"Yeah," Dan said, "but I'm not acting that weird about it."
"Perhaps," Pammy said, "All will be made more clear if you answer this simple question: Truth...or Dare?"
Written by Zodiac on 31 May 2008
"Dare," Daniel said. "I'll go for a dare."
It was silly, something that a senior in high school shouldn’t really be participating in, but
he didn’t care. He had to know and it might be fun too. Plus, it made Pammy happy as
evidenced when she smiled and clapped her hands together.
"Perfect," she said. "Perfect! I have just the dare." Her smile broadened and she leaned
in towards Daniel, her next words a whisper. "Have you heard of Area 50?"
Daniel stiffened, and nodded.
"Good," she said. "I dare you to go there and I double dare you to bring something
"Fine," Daniel said, smiling now too. "I'll bring you back a rock or maybe a few pebbles!"
"No." Pammy smirked. "I don't just double dare you--I double dog dare you to bring me
something strange from there!"
Daniel blinked, and then nodded again.
"Fine--I'll bring you a big spider! Or maybe a giant cockroach!"
She shrieked and shook her head, but he was already walking off.
"I'll be back," he said. "Then it's your turn."
Written by skiesofsilver on 13 January 2017
He took the low trail towards Area 50. It was gravelly and shrouded by nearby trees, but he hardly cared. He really did hope he would find something strange or scary in Area 50 because the truth was Area 50 wasn't very strange or scary in the first place. Of course, he hadn't told her that, but he'd been to the place before. It was a run down government facility that had been abandoned since before the end of the Cold War, but there was nothing secretive or spooky stored within its rusted, crumpled buildings. The most annoying thing about Area 50 was the distance--it was far, far away and only accessible by the low trail or a high road that was often flooded out as it was now. It was so far that by the time Daniel reached the end of the trail it was already beginning to get dark. He wasn't worried, however. All he had to do was wander a few minutes, find a bug or weird looking rock, and he would be good to go to head back. If he waited any longer he figured she would think he'd just run off, and he couldn't let her have the satisfaction of even thinking that a possibility.
He arrived at Area 50 and it was much as he remembered it--as in, not much. He sighed when he stepped past its rusted gates, idly kicking a stone while he looked around for anything interesting and that's when he saw it.
There was a green glow inside a nearby building, a familiar light that made him freeze. He knew it from his dreams, he had seen it many times before in strange sleep but those had always been flights of fantasy, nothing truly real. Was this then a dream?
He shook his head and wandered towards the building and its glow. Maybe someone had set up something funny or this was all an elaborate prank on him by his friends and her. They had all shared the dream, after all…
He neared the building and shivered, suddenly cold. Daylight fled by the second and soon shadows gathered everywhere. The green glow cast strange shadows on the walls as he entered the building, vaguely vulpine and animalistic, and as he closed in on the source, he wondered what could make such shapes. The glow grew brighter and brighter and more intense until he could no longer move forward without shielding his eyes. By the time he had nearly reached the source, he could barely see, or feel or even think. The glow engulfed him and then he knew no more
Written by skiesofsilver on 27 January 2017
Daniel awoke not screaming, surprised, or shocked, but in a relative haze as he yawned,one arm lifting to rub at his forehead. He lazily blinked back sleep in the darkened, another soft yawn escaping his mouth, and then his ears twitched.
Immediately he sat up, both hands flying towards either side of his face. His fingers scrabbled up his neck and cheeks before they found his ears--or where his ears should have been. Instead, there was more hair than he was used to there, shaggier and thicker too. His hands crawled further up his head until they met his ears near the top, and they weren’t the ears he remembered.
He felt his ears up, and found they were warm and fuzzy and long now. They were differently shaped too, furry triangles that extended a little over half a foot from his skull. Over the next few seconds, he explored his ears further, feeling their fuzziness, running his fingers up and down them to estimate their actual length, and wondering if these new ears had affected his hearing. He dug a finger a little bit too deeply into one of his ears and it twitched irritably. He pulled his hand away and wondered in bewilderment why that twitching felt so normal, and then he began to wonder why nothing at all felt alien about the ears. Sure, the sensation of fingers on fur felt a little strange, but the ears just felt...right. As if they were supposed to be there, as if they had always been there, as if he had never possessed anything but furry, triangular ears to aid him in hearing.
Daniel leapt out of bed and headed to his bathroom, thankful that he had his own one right so close unlike so many of his friends. If his parents saw him like this…!
He entered the bathroom and fumbled for the light. Even in the dark, he could see the reflection of his ears in the mirror but he wanted to see them as if it weren’t dark out and…
His fingers closed on the light switch, but he hesitated. Something seemed wrong…
He flipped on the light anyways, blinking away black spots in his vision from the sudden illumination. When he could finally see, he peered into the mirror and saw what he had felt. Atop his head were a pair of foxlike ears, red in coloration save for some black fur near the tips. His hair too had grown out, definitely noticeably longer than it had been yesterday.
Yesterday. He blinked and thought suddenly of the dare, Area 50, and the green glow. Had that glow caused this or had that been a dream? Then what was this? Another dream?
He shrugged and turned the lights off. It was still dark out, which meant it wasn’t quite near the time to wake up for school. He’d go to sleep now and see what happened in the morning. If he didn’t have ears, then it was just a dream. If he did, well...he’d let future him figure it out. He was a little too sleepy still to think straight, the adrenaline of finding out about his new, yet familiar ears having worn away minutes ago. He yawned once more, and fell asleep not soon after.
Written by skiesofsilver on 08 February 2017
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
Daniel woke up in the middle of the night panting because of how hot. He thrashed against his blankets, twisting them around himself until he finally managed to push them off the side of the bed. He still felt hot, but not nearly as hot. He panted again and thought that it might actually be nice to take a cold shower. He stepped out of bed and staggered, feeling suddenly uncertain on his feet. What was going on?
He walked slowly towards the bathroom, his stride short thanks to the fact that his toes seemed to bite into the carpet. Worse, with each step he took he felt his heels lift higher and higher as he became more reliant on the front of his feet to walk. He nearly fell over once or twice and so he had to steady himself against the wall and it almost seemed like his fingers scratched the paint more than regular nails should. There too was something always lingering at the fringe of his vision, dark and pointed.
Finally he reached his bathroom, stumbling just past the door and catching himself on the sink. He nearly sank down to the floor, but managed to pull himself even as his hips shuddered suddenly. Barely maintaining a standing stance, he flicked on the lights.
He gasped and nearly fell over because of what he saw in the mirror. His body was so much different now. His nose and mouth as he knew them once no longer existed. Instead he had a short vulpine muzzle, a protrusion that was the lingering object in his vision that he had noticed only mere moments ago. He touched his wet, black nose while at the same time noticing the red fur upon it, the same fur that was spreading over the rest of his body. He panted, his long pink tongue lolling out as he became only hotter.
He stepped towards the shower and nearly fell again. He whimpered and looked down at his feet. They were totally foxlike, black paws, claws, and digitigrade stance included. The same black fur climbed up his to his ankles before abruptly shifting shades to red. He shook his head at the sight, causing hair fall into his eyes.
He brushed his hair away, idly wondering when it had grown so long and soft and red before he made it to the shower. He stepped inside, pulling the curtain tight behind him and reached for the faucet. He paused, because he saw that they too were animalistic in appearance, his digits shorter and more slender and covered in black fur. They too had claws, and his arms bristled as scarlet fur rushed over his skin. He panted again and felt his tongue brush against his canine teeth, their points so sharp and solid. He was so very, very hot so without a thought he turned the knob.
Cold water sprayed out, instantly granting him some relief but also reminding him that he had failed to remove his nightshirt and underwear. For a moment he didn't care, but then his chest began to itch. He looked down at his nightshirt. It has always been baggy and a bit large but now it seemed baggier somehow, even soaked as it was. His underwear too seemed loose on his hips which appeared wider than he remembered.
With some effort he removed his shirt and threw it over the curtain's rail before moving onto his underwear. This slipped off his hips easily enough, and met the same fate as his shirt. Now that he was in the nude, he looked down at his body.
His form was mostly furred, sigh only a few portions of pink skin here and there that weren't covered with the scarlet stuff and those areas were steadily decreasing. Putting what he had seen in the mirror together in his mind with what he saw now, Daniel realized he resembled some sort of humanoid fox sans the tail. His proportions were slighter now too, his arms more slender, his white-furred stomach almost completely smooth, and his legs were long and skinny. He also couldn’t be sure, but he felt like he might be shorter too, if the shower’s faucet appearing higher up than before was any indicator. Despite all this and as strange as it sounded, more of him had changed and yet he felt the same.
He shivered in the shower, feeling more cold than hot now. He turned off the shower and stepped out, taking a towel as he moved to the mirror. While he dried himself off, a process he found harder to do with all his fur, he looked himself over once more in the reflection.
He was indeed a fox anthro, and a wet and sleepy one at that. The cold water had made him feel more tired somehow. He yawned and continued to dry himself off until he was at least somewhat sure he wouldn’t soak his sheets. Afterwards, he put the towel up, turned off the bathroom light, and returned to bed. He fell asleep easily enough.
Written by skiesofsilver on 24 February 2017
A sick day
“Daniel!” his mother called. “Danny, get up!”
Daniel awoke and found himself as foxy as he had hours before. He sighed and hugged his covers close to himself.
“Daniel!” his mother called again, opening the door. “This is the second day in the row! You’d better not make this a habit!”
“I won’t, mom,” he said, pausing before he spoke further. His voice sounded different, higher in pitch and slightly growly. He blinked and smiled weakly at his mother. “I just feel...sick.”
“Oh!” Immediately her face filled with concern. “What is it?”
He shrugged and dipped his snout against the sheets.
“I don’t know,” he replied. “I just feel...weird.”
“Yeah,” he said, his mind racing as he realized this wasn’t an adequate reason to get out of school. “My tummy is all queasy and I felt hot all night long...I could barely sleep and…”
“Oh honey,” his mother said, smiling. “It sounds like a bug. Why don’t you stay home
“No,” she said firmly. “You know yourself better than I do, and so if you say you’re sick, you’re sick. I don’t want you to get any of your friends sick either, do you?”
He shook his head.
“No,” he said. “I--Mom, do I look weird?”
She stared at him, shook her head, and smiled.
“No, dear,” she said. “You look just like you always do.”
“Foxy?” he hazarded.
“No.” She laughed. “You just look like you, like my wonderful son! Now, are you going to keep on talking, or are you going to get some rest.”
Daniel grinned and laid back.
“Rest,” he said, closing his eyes.
He heard his mother murmur something and then she closed the door. Immediately afterwards, he stood up and reached for his overstuffed wallet on his nightstand. Fishing around in it, he pulled something out: his driver’s license. He stared at it, because the photo of him on it was him as...well, as he was before he was a fox.
In the next instant, this all changed. The face in the photo shifted, nose and mouth pushing out together into a long snout while the ears relocated to the top of his head and reformed to fuzzy, triangular shapes while black, red, and white fur rushed over his visage. In a matter of moments, the photo had changed from his old self to the current one as if some hole in reality had just been sealed.
Daniel sighed and returned his license to his wallet before lying back down in his bed. He closed his eyes and when he reopened them he looked over to the clock. He had slept for a couple more hours, enough so that his mom was gone at her part time job. He shuffled out ofbed and sat at his computer. Opening his browser, he began to search.
Written by skiesofsilver on 06 March 2017