Backing away from Quix or the beast he had become Frysco looked around desperately for a way out. The beast was so close.... then it turned and ran the other way. Deciding it was a good idea to also run Frysco turned but his feet tangled with some obstruction on the floor. He fell forwards with a yell, catching himself on his hands as the black coils of a snake boiled up out of the ground! They lashed about his body before he could pull free, crushing his wings as sliding and slithering the snake squeezed about him tightly.
A wide, black scaled, blunt snouted head slithered into view and wove back and forth staring into his eyes. Frysco froze, that beautiful, python like gaze… the smooth, overlapping plates along their underside, the feathers they were enchanting. The roar of some creature bellowing in distress startled Frysco out of the strange lassitude being caused by that gaze!
Tearing his eyes away from the snake’s Frysco clamped his eyes shut and resumed his desperate attempts to escape. He thrashed back and forth, straining to flex his wings, to pull an arm free to get away! It was helpless, nine foot of solidly muscled snake coils had him and were not budging.
The snake was everywhere, crushing him, holding him tightly in place. It wasn’t just physical though, Frysco could feel pressure against his thoughts. It was demanding he look, open his eyes, submit to them.
“Fuck off,” Frysco muttered, wriggling against the constricting, undulating coils, “I am not looking so you can sod off”
“Fine if you won’t look… thiss is your fate!”
Pain blossomed in Frysco’s shoulder as something slammed into it. He fet four long sharp points pierce his flesh. Opening his eyes, gasping in pain the bird saw the snake’s jaws wrapped about his shoulder. He could feel them biting, squeezing their fangs deeper and then the snake pulled back and smirked.
“Party hard,” the snake hissed and then squeezed tightly. Coils boiled up around Frysco’s body, rubbed against him and pushed him down! He should have hit the floor but his feet pushed out into an open space. Wiggling back and forth the bird squeaked then dropped like a stone down a long chute that had opened in the floor.
He had time for one short scream then he fell out of the bottom of the ramp. His feet smacked into the floor and he folded forwards onto hands and knees. He gasped in shock as a wave of frothing golden liquid was suddenly dumped over him! It was beer… or ale, the smell was distinctive and it soaked his plumage and costume. It also made the puncture wounds in his shoulder burn and Frysco pushed himself up onto his knees, beak opening ready to scream at whoever did it.
What he saw made the words die in his mouth as the crowd of ten or so goblins surrounding him cheered! Waving tankards of ale the small green monsters all started to chant, jumping up and down as the two who had dumped a barrel of beer over him picked up another.
“Pledge, pledge pledge!” they screamed, cavorting madly and Frysco tried to scramble back but he wasn’t fast enough and another wave of beer splashed over his front. His tye-dyed silk vest and billowing trousers were ruined, clinging to his body in a sodden heap.
“What the fuck are you doing…” Frysco screamed at them but they just laughed, mouths full of sharp fangs. Evil glee written all over their faces as they continued to laugh and shout.
Stumbling up onto his feet Frysco tried to push past them but stumbled as his silk trousers suddenly dropped to the floor. Grabbing for his waistband Frysco squawked as his hat slipped free, the pins holding it to his feathers clattering to the floor as fruit bounced everywhere.
“What the hell…” he was shoved backwards by the goblins, the short creatures laughed and grinned and refused to let him get past them. Staggering back into the middle of the room he clutched at his shoulder which was starting to really burn and looked around wildly for help.
Across the room he saw another group of goblins tormenting a giant wolverine. He wasn’t sure if it was the beast Quix had become or some other poor soul. Either way they were sitting on him, forcing a harness over his head, pouring some sort of vile concoction down his throat as he roared and thrashed and gurgled. There were too many of the short, green skinned terrors dressed in an assortment of rags. There was also a mirror and something about his reflection caught his attention. Frysco tried to approach and surprisingly the goblins moved out of the way. They rearranged themselves in a semicircle and pushed the bird forwards so he was standing before it looking at his reflection.
He was shrinking… his tie-dyed silk vest was hanging limply from his shoulders as he lost height visibly before his eyes. Taking his hand away from the puncture wounds in his shoulder he stared in horror. The bite marks were fading and his gorgeous, magnificent plumage was falling out! What was revealed beneath his feathers wasn’t soft bird skin but rugged, muddy green skin like the goblins!
Feathers rained down all around him as with squawks of horror, wings flapping Frysco lost it! He had to get away from here! He swatted at the goblins, shoved through them and managed to knock several of them over before they tackled him! There were too many and he was continuing to lose height, to shrink and shed feathers. This made him an easy target for the goblins as they held him down and cheered on.
“One of us, one of us! Party party, one of us!”
The chanting was horrible, high pitched, manic, full of glee and malicious intent. One of the goblins pulled his head back, another forced his beak apart and a third poured a tankard of beer down his throat. Choking and spluttering Frysco swallowed about half of it. It was so bitter, strong and made his stomach churn and his head start to fog over!
Lifting his head slightly Frystal stared at himself in the mirror… his feathers were gone, green skin was all that remained… his wings, his beautiful, exotic, gorgeous wings were shrinking. They were little more than curved extrusions of bone and flesh now they lacked feathers and they were vanishing rapidly.
“One of us, one of us! Party party, one of us!”
“No.. no… nrrffff….” teeth… lips… stumbling over his words Frysco tried to scream as his beak flattened out and pressed into his face. He was growing a short nose, long pointy green ears, a mouth full of razor sharp teeth he nearly looked like all the other goblins.
“One of us, one of us! Party party, one of us!”
“What… isfff…” stumbling on his words Frysco staggered to his feet as the goblins scampered back and let him up. He was so short, so small… tiny like all of them, less than a foot tall. Green skin… yellow eyes… a narrow, rake-thin body. It was growing harder to think, his thoughts kept fragmenting apart… breaking, snapping… panic was subsiding… he was… what was…. Shaking his head Frysco staggered up to one of his brothers… no the beasts, the goblin monsters he wasn’t one of them! He was… Fry… s…. Frys… Fry….
“Frys… burn…” he slurred in a slow, heavy voice, “Goblin burn… yes…” jumping in surprise he looked at himself in the mirror and tilted his head. There had been something… something important he had to remember but.
“No burn, party!” one of his brothers shouted and pushed a tankard of their bitter goblin ale into his hands, “Party, party burn later!”
“Yes! Look!” pointing with his tankard Frys drew his mates attention to the chute, someone else was plummeting down it, “New pledge!”
The others scrambled to grab one of the barrels of beer, ready to induct their new goblin mate. Frys paused long enough to grab a ragged loincloth from the pile near the empty tankards. Once he was properly attired as a partying goblin should be he ran over to help out. Joining his voice to theirs he cheered as the barrel of ale was emptied over the startled mouse.
“Pledge, Pledge, Pledge!”
Leaning against a wall panting heavily Stardust shook his head and gulped down lungfuls of air. His hands were shaking, he felt like he was going to throw up. Clamping a paw to his muzzle he groaned as his stomach churned. Slouching down into a crouch the raccoon held his head between his hands and gulped down more air, trying to steady his nerves.
He wasn't sure how long it took him to gather himself but when he looked up everything had changed. The dark onyx walls were gone, he was surrounded by bright mirrors… smooth expanses of glass that reflected his body into infinity!
Staggering back to his feet Stardust squeaked in alarm, his heart pounded in his chest and his limbs locked up as he froze. As he watched, the infinite reflections vanished, they popped out of existence one by one until only one of him remained.
“What is this….” Stardust muttered at last, pulling his terror in and turning… his reflections stayed statue still. Each one faced outwards regardless of what direction he was facing, “Nido what the hell, let me out!”
Further protests died as Stardust watched a line of stitching suddenly weave itself into place on his reflection… clothing started to fade away as more lines of stitches appeared. For a long moment Stardust just watched as his chest and stomach… tail, side of his torso, arms and legs all grew stitches. Then he screamed as one of those reflections stepped out of the mirror and merged with him! Clothing vanished, stitching erupted across his real body. Jumping up and down Stardust freaked out and hammered on one of the mirrors.
He stumbled backwards as the reflection he was hammering on suddenly stepped out of the mirror and merged with him! Words failed as he shrank, shedding height and organic fur. Plush velvet crept across his body as down he plunged until he was only a foot tall. It all happened so fast he didn't have time to scream and then he was incapable of it.
It felt, strangely nice, the sudden sensation of soft faux fur, the black button eyes. Pressing his paws to his stomach Stardust felt soft, squashable stuffing and the nausea and terror finished fading away. It was warm and quiet, his panic just drained out of him slowly and steadily. Staggering slightly on his feet Stardust sat down heavily and his body emitted a soft, friendly “squeak!” Muzzle twitching into a smile the raccoon giggled and tilted his head from side to side, he was a plush toy… this was perfect!
Movement in the mirror to his left popped his euphoric feeling. Turning he watched in detached curiosity as the plush raccoon in the mirror continued to change. Fur gave way to some sort of soft vinyl, colours started to leach out of the material… black and faint greys where the only hint of colour to remain as all the warm inviting fluff was changed.
Stardust didn't run, there was nowhere to go. As the third reflection merged into his body he trembled and held his arms out to either side and watched as his fur shifted to match what he had seen. Soon he was soft, supple, pliable vinyl, smooth and squeaky and shiny. Running a big mitten paw down his stomach Stardust nodded in determination, he could still make this work. He was so busy prodding and petting himself he missed what the fourth and final reflection had done. It stepped into him from behind and with a startled cry Stardust started to change again.
His reflection sprang back into being in front of him and he watched in horror as his cute raccoon mask bled away into black vinyl. His snout grew shorter, less defined and his lips sealed themselves shut! His nose vanished as he raised a paw to his muzzle to tug at where his mouth had been. There wasn’t even stitching or an outline of a mouth now, there was just smooth vinyl! Then his ears changed, pointed, shaped raccoon ears became generic and shapeless. The rings vanished from his tail as it shrank and became unmentionable and all hint of claws and separate fingers had vanished. Stardust had no distinction, nothing at all to identify him as a cute, lovable plush toy!
Then last of all his cute bright lavender eyes melted. He could still see, the world was as clear as ever but his reflection showed nothing but smooth, featureless vinyl. He could have been any animal, there was nothing to distinguish him, make him special. He tried to speak, to shout, to beg whatever forces were at work here to let him turn back! He wanted to be a cute plush, a lovable warm, friendly looking critter not this… this… oddity!
He couldn’t speak though, he had no voice, no mouth and then the fifth and final reflection walked toward him. It looked identical, there were no changes to its design like the others. But something about the way it waddled, held its arms out… it was very off. There was something about it Stardust didn’t like and he tried to get away. There was nowhere to move off to however and it collided with him, body sinking into his and his mind!
It was his mind it assaulted, thoughts started to break down. Higher thinking, reasoning, his name all began to unravel. He could remember he had a name, that he had been something else but it was gone. Just the lingering thought that he had lost them. He was a plush toy, smooth and vinyl and infectious… he wanted to hug others, to squeeze them and make them like him! He would bring warmth and comfort to everyone and maybe if he hugged enough people, made them forget he would remember what he had forgotten too!
A loud noise to his left made Stardust turn and he saw a group of eight or so Goblins coming down the corridor… he was in a corridor… what… the bright mirrors… he wanted to hug them! Spreading his arms wide Stardust took half a step, then another waddling with intent toward them. They were saying stuff, agitated yips and growls and mutters then one of them threw a half eaten wax apple at him. Sighing Stardust felt his body ripple, vinyl oozed around the apple, and then it was gone, part of him now.
Lifting his featureless head he spread his stubby arms and waddled toward the goblins. He was a good toy, he would hug them. They fled, screeching and yammering in terror in the other direction. That hurt… he was a toy, was bringer of comforts not scary! With a determined step Stardust continued onwards, waddling on his little featureless feet. He would find someone to hug, someone to comfort… it was still early in the night.
Welcome friends Adalore and I would like to invite you to join us for Halloween this year, come, the invitations have been sent out. The RSVPs have been received, it's time we talked about... the Terms of Service.