No Longer Alone
one of the rare times i was commissioned to write something that wasn't smut! it's soft and gentle
The room was silent with the kind of silence that eventually becomes deafening. The tick-tock of a clock in a corridor could be heard, and so could a distant bird song through the half-open windows. If this continued any longer, it would be quiet enough to hear the high-pitched tone that always resides in the background, no matter how hard you try to escape it.
“Why are you here?”
The therapist stared at him, but with no hint of malice. It seemed more of a non-verbal encouragement to get her client to finally speak.
Gir fidgeted in his seat, “I—I don’t know. Do I need a reason?”
At first the therapist was quiet, but soon she looked to the side and spoke, “I suppose not. There is always a reason for anyone’s actions, and I’m usually the one to help people discover what those reasons are. People come to me for many reasons. Sometimes they need a friend, sometimes they need to know more about themselves than what pure introspection can offer, and sometimes…” She leaned back in her chair, “They just don’t know who they’re supposed to be.”
The therapist looked back towards Gir. Without thinking about it, he averted his gaze.
“Do any of those sound like they apply to you?”
“I think so…” Gir sighed, “I’m really just here because a friend of mine told me that it was just getting harder to be around me, and that I should consider seeing a therapist. I decided to come, of course, but I just don’t know how anyone can help with how I feel sometimes…”
“Mhm, thank you for opening up to me. So, what do you think has changed recently? What in your life is different enough to make this a new problem?”
“I… Well, I don’t know. I’m doing all these things adults are supposed to do, but none of them really satisfy me. I’ve got a job, I date sometimes, I’m doing everything there is to do, but in the end I just feel—”
“Unfulfilled? Hollow, like it’s all just some act? Alone?”
Gir sat in silence. He opened his mouth to say something, but only closed it again after he could come up with no reply.
“I understand. All… This,” She waved her hand, gesturing at nothing, and everything, “Is sometimes simply not meant for us. This life that we’ve been told we must live isn’t always going to be the one that we’re truly meant for. Some of us often find that we need to escape, to be someone or something else. Do you often feel like this?”
“I… I really do…” Gir was in shock. He wasn’t expecting anyone else to understand anything about how he felt, and certainly not so quickly.
“Come here, sit with me,” The therapist patted the space next to her.
Gir obliged, getting up from his more clinical position in the client-therapist relationship to one that seemed more natural at the time.
“It’s rare that I encounter a client I consider doing this with, so please, use discretion when you leave here today,” She held up her arm towards him, “Hold my hand.”
“Uh… Okay,” Gir reached out his own hand and touched hers.
The therapist gasped the moment their hands made contact. She reeled back from him, as if she had felt a shock, “Whoa, I…” She hesitated for a second, before standing up in front of Gir.
“What happened? Did I do something wrong?”
She shook her head and smiled. While pulling an odd-looking pendant out from under her shirt, she snapped her fingers, and suddenly the room locked itself. The windows shut themselves and bolted, and the doors clicked as their locks turned. To top it all off, the therapist herself began to change as she turned the symbol on her pendant. Her appearance seemed to be melting away into clouds of nothingness, a shimmering effect surrounding her as she began to look decidedly less human. This didn’t seem to be some sort of transformation, it was more as if a disguise was being broken. As the changes finished, she gradually came back into focus, and she was definitely not human. For one thing, instead of pinkish skin, she now had very pink feathers, and instead of a regular human face, there was now a big beak where her mouth used to be. Not much else was visible beneath her professional attire, but it was safe to assume there were changes there as well.
“W-what the hell? Am I seeing things?! This can’t be real!” Gir panicked, getting up and running away from what he just saw.
The pink bird person giggled, her tone now with a more sing-song nature to it, “Shh, dear, I know you understand all this. The moment we touched, I knew exactly who you were!”
“What?? But—This isn’t normal! People aren’t supposed to be birds!”
“I think you’re lying to yourself. I think you’re hiding that deep down, you already knew all about things like this. I think,” She took a few steps towards him, “You’re happy you can finally know that all this is possible.”
Gir gulped. She was telling the truth.
“I knew the moment I saw your mind that it would be safe for me to show myself to you, because I also now know exactly what you need. You don’t want to be human. You never wanted to be human. You’ve never wanted a lot of things that have been forced onto you… I can help. With your permission, I would like to show you your true form.”
Gir was perfectly in his rights to be incredibly freaked out about this entire ordeal, but there was something about her. Something about knowing that she’s already seen the deepest recesses of his mind. He felt like he could be open, about what he wanted, and what he needed. “I… Please… Yes. I want this.”
The bird smiled, holding out her hand one more time.
“Wait,” Gir hesitated, “Before… Anything, what’s your name?”
She smiled, “It’s Anna. Now, hold my hand,”
Gir reached out, and held it.
The world blurred in and out of focus for the two of them, a connection now forming between them that was a lot more stable than the one before it. Gir could feel Anna sifting through his mind, developing an image of who Gir was far more detailed than he had ever had of himself. She now knew every fragment of who he was, and who he needed to be. The two of them opened their eyes again.
“Oh, my poor thing… No wonder this life is so hard for you! None of this is right for you, none of this at all…” She looked at Gir with so much pity and sorrow that he thought he might just melt away right there, “I want to give you a new life. I want to give you the life you’ve always needed. I want to give you who you are. Will you let me?”
“I’m so glad, dearies,” The bird took a step back, and held her hands together in front of herself, with their backs touching. Before Gir had a chance to ask, she started to pull her hands apart, as if she were opening a pair of curtains. Gir felt a shock run through his body, followed by a sensation not unlike being torn apart. The more she pulled, the greater the force, and soon light was flooding the room as glowing energy emanated from the seam growing through Gir’s body. One whole was becoming two halves. Even his consciousness was becoming affected, and soon every fragment of his identity had been separated into two distinct groups. She continued to pull the halves apart, a visible gap forming in the column of light. Before the two halves were completely separated, the light spread across his entire surface, and suddenly, he were separated. The bird looked at the two hovering masses of light, and lowered her hands. Now, all that was left, was for the separated halves to become their own wholes.
The one on her right began first. It had quickly gone from looking like half an adult, to an amorphous blob, and now it was in the shape of a much younger person. The light covering its form dimmed, and soon its shape become obvious. It was a young girl, a red panda, probably little more than 5 years old. She had red hair, and two ponytails on either side of her head, just under her fluffy ears. Her skirt was fitted with a hole for her striped tail to come out of. Anna instinctively knew: Her name was Candy.
The other ball of light had now began to take form, and was following a process similar to that of her sister. She slowly lowered to the floor, and she gained features. Her hair was split into ponytails like her sister, except this time her hair was pink. She looked to be the same age as her red panda twin, except her species was that of a racoon, giving her a grey colour scheme that went well with the pinkish-red of her sister. Again, her clothing was already tailored to suit her, with a hole in her summer dress for her also-striped tail to fit through. Again, Anna knew who this was: This was Layla.
Candy and Layla looked around the room, holding hands and naturally becoming nervous in this strange environment. The sisters held close together, and were beginning to get scared before they realised who was standing in front of the two of them, “Mommy!”
Anna giggled and chirped, reaching down her hands for her two new girls, “Yes, I’m here, don’t worry dears,”
Layla asked, “What is this place? I don’t like it…”
Candy gripped tight onto Anna’s hand, “I want to go home!”
“Don’t worry, dears, that’s where we’re going~” Anna clicked her fingers before holding onto Layla’s paw. She sighed happily; With daughters like these, it wouldn’t take her long to get used to being a mother.
With a flash of light, the three were gone. The doors and windows unlocked, with there being no sign the room had ever been occupied.