The month continues and I Dr. Callyco both feel the need to insist on saying my name a lot and bringing you new tales. Tonight, our victim is Zeelo
It’s not uncommon to miss some of the things from childhood, and to be aware they’re gone forever. At least they should be. But, as Zeelo voices a wistful thought heard by the right stranger he might get more than he dreamed.
Meanwhile at the Lair of Dr. Callyco
“Growing up is the worst.” Dr. Callyco complained as he sat on a couch with his armed crossed with the mouse that was Dr. Cutie Pup sitting on a cushion next to him.
“Squeak.” The mouse gave the kitten a look meant to ask how he’d know since he didn’t age.
“While you don’t have to get rid of all the fun things in your life, there are some experiences you have to give up forever.” Dr. Callyco explained. “And then you get responsibilities and suddenly have to watch what you eat because your body can’t handle it anymore.”
“Squeak.” Dr. Cutie Pup was also fairly certain that as a shapeshifter Calex had no knowledge of what difficult body metabolisms were like.
“The point is we all have times when we miss some things from our childhood. And tonight’s guest is no exception. We have Zeelo, a cat in his early twenties who has become a responsible member of society. Yet, as Halloween comes and he hands out candy to all the visiting kids he can’t help but feel nostalgic and wish he could do such things again. He should be careful who hears such wishes. For he’ll get not just that but much more than he anticipated. I bring you our eighth tale, The Tale of Candy and Youth.”
Thirteen Tales 2020
The Tale of Candy and Youth
Zeelo had to admit to himself, that he couldn’t help but feel a tinge of envy every year when Halloween rolled around. Kids getting to dress up as monsters, or their favorite superheroes or other characters, and running around all night getting free candy. There was a thrill to that, one that Zeelo knew was long lost to him. He was in his twenties now, and instead of a costume wore a blue sweater and a pair of brown shorts. His normal attire. He probably could have gotten away with still wearing a costume when handing out candy or something, but it felt a little foolish. The cat didn’t have any plans for tonight, he wasn’t going to a party, wasn’t going to have any guests aside from trick-or-treaters, and so it felt silly to waste the money on costume only to just sit alone in his living room in it. So his plain day to day clothes it was.
Still, at least he could live somewhat vicariously through the children that came by to visit. Seeing how excited they were as he filled their bags with candy, it couldn’t help but warm the cat’s heart a little bit. Maybe he was too old to do some of the things he liked, but it didn’t mean he couldn’t be involved in them. Just from a different perspective. And now it was his turn to take the kindness of adults who gave him candy as a kid and pay it forward to the next generation.
Plus it was fun seeing what costumes people came up with. Halloween was likely the most entertaining night of the year to do some people watching. This year superheroes were popular. Not too surprising. They were popular every year now, ever since they started to dominate the movie scene. But there were others, characters from video games or TV shows instead, and of course some of the classic monsters like werewolves and zombies.
The night passed quicker than Zeelo expected and the amount of children showing up on his doorstep began to slow down. It was getting late, no doubt soon all the kids would be in bed. Zeelo got ready to turn the lights off, the universal sign that this location was closed for trick-or-treating when the doorbell rang one more time.
“Probably some older kids.” Zeelo grabbed the bucket of candy and headed for the front door. He was running out of candy so hopefully not too many more visitors. It was probably for the best though. Whatever didn’t get given out to the visiting children would go to him instead, and Zeelo would eat everything of what was left. Someone had to save him from himself!
Zeelo opened the front door but was confused when he didn’t see a kid. Instead, there was a small pumpkin shaped bucket sitting on his front door. There was no sign of who it belonged to.
“Um hello?” Zeelo asked wondering where the kid was. Perhaps someone had decided to go with trick. Or maybe they were just shy. Or perhaps they were going super hardcore in on being a ghost and making sure no one saw them. Either way Zeelo didn’t see much of anything. Just a bucket full of candy, lined with a small trace of glitter for some reason.
Zeelo stepped out the front door completely and took a few steps away to look around the front of his apartment and see if he could see anyone. It wasn’t exactly like there were any good hiding places, not even for a little kid. Some bushes that he could see over, and then it was mostly sidewalk leading to the different apartments that lined the street. Zeelo spent a few minutes searching for the trick-or-treater then gave up. He walked back to the bucket sitting on his front porch, reached into his own bucket and dropped a bag of chocolate candies into the pumpkin.
“Well, hope you’re having a good night.” Zeelo spoke up assuming whoever was close by could likely hear him. “Enjoy it while you can. You’ll be surprised how fast these days are over. Heh, you have no idea what I’d give to be a kid again, run around the entire night in disguise and eat my weight in candy.” The last part was a hyperbole. Even as a kitten Zeelo wasn’t able to take that much sugar.
Not that he hadn’t tried. But as a kitten parents tended to interfere with him devouring his entire candy hoard in one night.
Zeelo turned to go back inside but paused as he thought he a very small bell-like noise. He spun around looking for the sound of it, but not seeing anything went back inside and closed the door. He rubbed the back of his head wondering what that was about.
And had a bit of glitter fall loose from his head fur. The same glitter that had been on the pumpkin bucket. Somehow Zeelo had gotten some of that glitter on him.
“Now how did I manage to do that?” Zeelo asked out loud. Best he could think of was that he must have tilted his head downward when he bent down to put the candy in the bucket. Well, the night was basically over, he figured he’d go take a shower to get the glitter out and then be done with it. Who knew how much had gotten caught in his head fur? He rubbed his hair again and found more glitter falling out except… It was glowing. “Wait what?”
Zeelo’s first assumption was glow in the dark glitter. Except if that was the case it should have been glowing outside in the dark of the night instead of inside in his well-lit apartment. His next thought he didn’t have time to finish before he noticed his entire body was glowing with the same rainbow of colors the glitter did. And suddenly, Zeelo’s clothes were starting to feel a little baggier on him. And then a lot baggier.
Zeelo let out a squeak that sounded way higher pitched than it should have and nearly fell flat on his face as he flailed about in his suddenly oversized clothing. He managed to grab the coffee table to steady himself from falling, which made him realize that the coffee table was roughly stomach level with him. His shorts slipped down off of him, and his sweater was so big that it was almost like being wrapped in a giant blanket. The hand that wasn’t holding onto the coffee table was completely eclipsed by the sleeve of the sweater and then it slowly began to slip off that shoulder. Zeelo didn’t understand what was happening but soon realized trying to keep any of his clothing on was a futile battle. Zeelo let go of the table and squirmed out of the neck hole of his sweater and stepped out of it. Now he stood naked in his living room, but at least there was no danger of tripping.
Still, his legs felt less sturdy, weaker. And yet he felt more energetic. He looked down at himself, noticing his shorter tail, rounder proportions. He was a kitten again! Only four years old! This caused two thought processes to shoot through his mind back to back in quick succession.
He was a little kitten! By the looks of it only four years old! How did that happen? How did he undo it? This was an emergency that needed to be fixed and he didn’t even know to begin.
He was a kitten! No longer bound by the responsibilities of an adult. This was great. He wanted nothing more than to run about and play and not even worry how this had happened. Part of him hoped it was permanent.
Panic and excitement battled for control of Zeelo’s mind as the kitten climbed up onto the couch. He needed to sit down while he processed this. The more time passed, the less power panic had and soon he was starting to grow more and more excited by the prospect of his loss of age. There was the question of how he’d work and pay rent but that was something for a responsible adult to figure out!
Zeelo realized that the tips of his paws were no longer hanging over the edge of the couch and now up on the cushion instead. He was still shrinking! Except, he didn’t appear to be getting any younger. That meant he was only getting smaller? Panic came back for a second round to battle excitement, but both feelings were forced to be put on hold when Zeelo realized his size wasn’t the only thing that was changing. He was losing his fur. He didn’t shed it, so much as it melted away into nothing. As his fur disappeared this should have left him looking like a freakish pink skinned house. However, instead the skin revealed by his lack of fur was blue and looked natural.
There was enough room for Zeelo to stand up on the couch. He did so in order to try to get a better look at himself. He nearly tripped as he did. The reason was he tried to stand on his toes, but he was no longer digitgrade. He quickly adjusted himself to stand flat on his feet, which was a weird feeling as he looked down at them. Like the rest of his body they were furless revealing blue skin, and his retractable claws had been replaced with light blue claws on the tips of each of his toes. He held his hands up in front of his face, and saw they were in a similar state. The paw-like structure to them were gone, and they were completely human shaped just tipped with claws.
He still had a tail though! A tail naked of fur, but still a tail so was at least still partially cat! Except, the tail grew out longer than it should have been for a feline of his age, and a barbed plate grew in on the very tip of his tail reminding him of cartoon images of the devil. He felt something pushing out from the top of his head. It didn’t hurt, but the sensation of his skin stretching wasn’t pleasant either. Luckily it didn’t last long as whatever was pushing out finished growing out from his head. He reached up to grab them and felt something as hard as bone. He ran his hands along the curved shape of them. He had horns.
Then the biggest shock came. The same stretching sensation started on his back. However, he forgot about any discomfort as a pair of bat-like wings sprouted from his backside. The tops of them matched the same blue as his skin while the membrane was a lighter blue.
While Zeelo was marveling at the physical transformations his body had continued to shrink smaller and smaller. Now the entire sofa cushion was like an island. By the time he stopped shrinking he couldn’t have been bigger than half an inch tall! He was really small!
Panic made a third attempt to overwhelm Zeelo’s mind, thinking about how scary and hard to navigate the world would be at his new size. However, excitement had a new argument of its own, one that completely overpowered panic winning over completely. The argument in favor of excitement was one simple thought.
‘You have wings.’
Zeelo tried flapping them, he lifted into the air. Being so small gave him an advantage here. He barely weighed anything and so flying was no more taxing than walking. Possibly even less so. He could stay airborne all day. He hovered a couple of inches above the couch which felt like a few feet to him. Looking out across the giant living room he realized that he needed to get a better look at himself. He knew most of how he had changed but couldn’t see it put all together. He decided to fly to the bathroom.
At first he flew slowly, afraid he might fall and plummet to the ground. But as he made it across the living room he grew more confident and soon was buzzing around as fast as a humming bird. He arrived at the bathroom in under half a minute and hovered up to look at the mirror.
And staring back at him was a tiny little demonic imp. He could see his horns were the same light blue as his claws, and that his body was mostly human shaped aside from the demon imp parts. He also saw his ears changed. They weren’t cat-like but neither were they human. They were stretched out long and side, probably closer to a bat’s than anything else in shape. Then there were his eyes. The irises were still blue, but they were slanted into slits. He didn’t see any pupils, and outside the irises the rest of his eyes were yellow. Being a cat, well former cat, it wasn’t uncommon for his eyes to shrink into small slits based on how much light was in a room. But these eyes didn’t change size or shaped. They stayed like this, and as he stared at them he noticed the blue slits emitted a soft glow.
Satisfied at having gotten a good look at himself Zeelo flew back to the living room. He wasn’t sure what to do now. He wondered if he had any powers as part of this change. If he did, it would likely involve fire and wasn’t something he should play around with inside the house. He could practice flying at least, and that was fun. It was probably a good idea to get the hang of it here inside the apartment before he tried flying outside where he’d have to deal with the wind.
As he circled around his living room his eyes settled on the bowl of candy he had been giving out. The candy that was for kids. He was a kid! A small demon kid! That meant he was allowed to have the candy! Zeelo dove down into the bowl of candy and let out a manic giggle. Each individual bag was bigger than him. And each bag would be full of several, well a few coated chocolate candies.
He was worried about if his small body was strong enough to rip the package open. But it turned out his tiny claws were quite sharp and ripped through the wrapper with ease. Pulling the entire tip of the wrapper off was a little difficult once it was ripped, but he soon had access to all of the candy inside. Small colorful chocolates each almost as big as he was! Now a single fun sized bag of candy was more than his entire body weight in sweets!
He hadn’t felt this excited about a piece of candy since well… Well probably since he was four years old the first time, and had gone trick-or-treating with his parents. That had been his very first real Halloween. The first three years of his life had had gotten to dress up in costumes, or more accurately been dressed up, but had been considered too young to go house to house, even with his parents.
And now here he was, four years old again. But he wasn’t in costume. No, he was completely naked. But since he was really a cat, maybe this transformation counted as a costume of sorts. He considered this as he bit into the giant chunk of candy and savored the taste. Something about being a kid again made candy taste better. It probably had something to do with taste buds and how they change as you develop. Either way it was delicious, and there were a few bags of theses he had left to himself.
But then again… Why stop there? Zeelo grinned wickedly. Four years old had been the first time he went trick-or-treating, which meant that he was definitely the right age to make a go at it again. He tried grabbing the handle of the bucket and flying into the air. He was stronger than he expected. He wasn’t going to overpower a fully sized person, but he could handle the bucket with ease. And that meant…
Zeelo quickly flew for the window. He undid the latches and then began to push upward on it. This was a lot harder than carrying the bucket. But after a few minutes he had gotten it open far enough for him to slip out. Then he continued to push up on it, flapped his wings to go into the air and slowly pushed upward until the window was open far enough to fit the bucket.
“YES!” Zeelo did a little happy dance in the air before flying back to the bucket and picking it up again. He flew out the window and then high up into the air so he could see the entire apartment complex as well as up and down the street to other residential areas. A lot of places had turned their lights off already, but there were plenty that were still on. Yes, there were plenty of places he could visit to get more sweets. He could have the bucket filled to the brim if he flew fast. Though, in this case it would be his owns size that stopped him from devouring the entire thing of candy instead of any parental figures. Though, he didn’t know how demon metabolisms worked. Maybe he could eat the entire thing. Well, even if his body could take it that would take a long time. He’d likely wind up with more than enough candy to last him till next Halloween. But only if he got out there and got going. Thanks to being able to fly reaching doorbells would be a cinch and who wouldn’t want to give the adorable little child imp a piece of candy or two? Zeelo began to fly in the direction of the closest home with the lights still on. The night was young and there was much fun to be had.