Trismegistus Shandy

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 21 of 21

Since Devi didn’t come through the portal speaking Zyuni anymore, because the cabinet was in an apartment whose residents only spoke Stasari, Nidlaya had loaned her a language talisman, a gold necklace with a ruby pendant, which enabled her to speak and understand Zyuni.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 19 of 21

“This is my mom and dad and grandma and my brother Karsan and my sister Ami,” Devi went on. “Everybody, this is Zindla and her mom Syuna. They run the shop where I first came to this world.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 18 of 21

“See,” Devi was saying, “a blue or green robe means you’re a girl, and yellow, orange or red means you’re a boy. At least for the Zyuneban. The Stasa have more complicated rules. And I guess we’re Stasa now, instead of Zyuneban like I was last time, so... anyway, pick whichever robe you feel like, if you can find one that fits you.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 17 of 21

“We weren’t entirely truthful last weekend when we told you that Davey couldn’t remember what had happened during the months he was gone,” Carson said. “Davey told us where he’d been and what he’d done, but... until a few days ago, we didn’t believe him, because we didn’t have evidence, and his story seemed pretty far-fetched.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 16 of 21

“This is going to be Sashtun’s first-ever movie, kids. It needs to be something special. Not whatever new movie you’re burning to see. Everyone, what’s the best movie you’ve ever seen?”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 14 of 21

After supper, when she returned to her hotel, she felt so lonely that she broke down and decided to call Carson or Amanda, even at the risk of annoying them. Perhaps she could ask them to let her speak with Davey? But when she got out her phone and tried to use it, nothing happened.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 13 of 21

He didn’t dare go through it himself. He’d seen how Devi grew into a ten-year-old boy and Sashtun aged into a woman into her forties; if he went through, he could be well over a hundred, too feeble to walk back through under his — or her — own power, and prone to dying of old age at any moment.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 12 of 21

“And even if his story is untrue, it’s not necessarily a sign of mental illness in children his age to make up strange stories. So I’ll refer you to a child psychiatrist, but I suggest you keep an open mind and check that mural in Davey’s bedroom from time to time to see if it exhibits any... strange behavior.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 10 of 21

“But why would Davey back up her story? Or why would she back up his, if it’s not true? I’m having a hard time believing it, but I’m having an even harder time figuring out why they would both tell such a far-fetched lie.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 09 of 21

She jumped out of the bath, hastily threw on a robe, and rushed to the room where the portal-cabinet was stored, carrying a towel. She was overjoyed to see the portal still open as she entered the room.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 08 of 21

Devi woke to find Tashni shaking him gently. “I’ve got your breakfast ready, miss,” she said. She couldn’t seem to understand that Devi was a boy... and today, anyway, Devi needed to be a girl for Zindla’s ceremony.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 06 of 21

Zindla liked having a little girl around, even if she was older than she looked, and used to be a boy. Seeing her cousins and other children who lived in the neighborhood, she’d sometimes regretted being an only child, and now she felt like she almost knew what it was like to have a little sister. Devi was so enthusiastic and curious about everything; having her around was like seeing everything for the first time.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 05 of 21

“Do you want me to show you how to sew?” Pasyala asked. “Or has your mother already shown you?”

 

“No,” Devi said at first. “Girls do sewing and knitting and stuff.” But then he reflected: People go into other worlds to learn valuable lessons and have adventures and stuff. The portal made me a girl, so maybe it wants me to learn about girl stuff before it will let me go home and be a boy again? “I guess I’m a girl now, so I can learn how to sew and stuff.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 04 of 21

In the stories, kids who go through portals to other worlds need to learn something from it. Maybe there’s something I’m supposed to learn from being a little girl. And there’s definitely got to be something I’m supposed to do here, but I don’t know what yet.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 03 of 21

“Odd, though. You don’t look like you have a transformation spell on you. Or any kind of spell, really. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a transformation, but I think I’d recognize it. Must be some kind I’m not familiar with.”

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 02 of 21

The moonlight from the window was falling directly on the gateway in the mural. But he couldn’t see the road and horse and buggy and the distant hills. Instead, he saw — a chair. A high-backed wooden chair, with red velvet cushions on the back and seat and arms, and to the left of that, part of what looked like a sofa or armchair.

The Mural and the Cabinet, part 01 of 21

The person who used to own the house until she died was an artist. She’d painted murals in every room. Davey could hardly believe that Dad was planning to paint over the battle scene in the living room and the mural in his and Mom’s bedroom, which he hadn’t let any of the kids see. Davey’s big brother Carson had snuck in to see it, and he wouldn’t tell Davey or Amy what it was; he just snickered when they asked him about it.

Pioneers, part 15 of 15

“Too much pillow-fighting?” he asked with a grin as we walked back toward our van.

 

I swatted him on the arm. “I’ve been to two girl sleepovers so far, and neither involved a pillow-fight.”

 

“Man, you got cheated.”

Pioneers, part 14 of 15

Pioneers, part 13 of 15

“So, Meredith,” Julianna said, plopping down on Sophia’s bed, “dish! Sophia’s told me about you, and I heard some stuff from girls at school, but I want to hear it from you. What do you like best about being a girl? Is there anything you miss about being a boy? Is there a boy you like? Or a girl? Are there girly things you haven’t tried yet that we can initiate you into tonight?” Her eyes gleamed with joy and enthusiasm, and even though I found her prying questions a little uncomfortable, I couldn’t resent her.

Pioneers, part 12 of 15

Mrs. Dirksen said to Mom, after we’d given the waiter our drink orders, “Erin, I don’t think you should be letting Tyler use the ladies' room.”

 

“Do you seriously think she should use the men’s room?” Mom asked incredulously. “The machine changed her completely into a girl.”

Pioneers, part 11 of 15

“Statistically, there’s got to be at least a couple more trans kids at each of our schools, and another hundred-plus trans people in the county as a whole... but at our age, most of them are probably closeted or in denial. That might change once more people knew about the machines and how easy it is to transition now.”

Pioneers, part 10 of 15

Since my period had started, I’d convinced Mom to let me use the Internet to research menstruation, feminine hygiene, etc. And Sophia had given me a book about puberty for young teens that Mom had given her a couple of years earlier. Between those, and the TG fiction I’d read online (not the most reliable source), I sort of knew what to expect from a pelvic exam.

Pioneers, part 08 of 15

Was he into me? It kind of looked that way. Not that we could do anything about it; I was grounded indefinitely, and his parents would never let him date a trans girl.

Pioneers, part 06 of 15

It was just a Walmart, not a Belk or something, and I was probably just getting basic underwear, not anything I could show off at school like a skirt or dress. But it was my first time shopping for girl clothes and I was determined to enjoy it. I’d read a million scenes like this in various stories since I first got past the nanny software a couple of years ago, and now I was going to live it.

Pioneers, part 05 of 15

She went to her room and came back with one of her sports bras, and I tried it on. It was definitely a lot tighter than the one I’d borrowed from the lost and found, but I thought I could live with it for an hour at a time until I got something that fit me.

Pioneers, part 01 of 15

It was early September — far enough into the school year that the teachers weren’t holding back on the homework, early enough that we still had some pretty nice weather. Which I was missing out on because I was sitting in my room doing homework, that Saturday morning when the world changed and only a few scattered people noticed.

Pioneers

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After the strange machine appeared on the lawn at the library, Meredith found it was easy to physically transition to the feminine body she wanted so desperately. But socially transitioning, and getting her parents to go along with it, would be a lot harder.

Unforgotten and Other Stories

My new collection, Unforgotten and Other Stories, is available now from Smashwords and Amazon. (Smashwords pays its authors better royalties than Amazon.)

It contains forty stories and 335,000 words of fiction: twenty-six short stories, seven novelettes, two novellas, three short novels, and two reviews of imaginary books and TV shows. Thirteen of the stories (over 180,000 words) have never appeared online before, and three others appear here in a significantly expanded form. Each story has a new afterword or introduction; many of the afterwords have recommendation and links for similar stories by other authors.

Water in the Sky: a TG Mixed Tape

An adventurer announces their retirement... and reveals the secret burden they've been carrying. A couple of exes try to salvage their friendship from the ruins of their relationship... and maybe something more. Two U.S. Marshals hunt for outlaws in 1876 Arizona... and find monsters. A fox running for his life from a trigger-happy farmer encounters a strange being... and finds a new life. Dive into these and three other stories by Dark Sun Morrigan, Desert Willow, Morrigan Q.R., MrSimple, Paradox, and Trismegistus Shandy.

Review: Dragon Princess by S. Andrew Swann

Dragon Princess by S. Andrew Swann (DAW, 2014) is a comedic fantasy novel with a transgender body-shuffle plot. Frank Blackthorne, a thief, is on the run from the government of one country, and flees to the neighboring country, where he’s recruited by a wizard to kill a dragon and save the princess he’s kidnapped. He objects that he’s a thief, not a hero, and the wizard responds by giving him an ancient sword with enchantments designed for killing dragons.

Trust Machines: Show and Tell

Kimberly got up and walked up in front of the class, holding what seemed like an off-brand Barbie of some sort. The doll was about ten inches high, with red hair and a more realistic figure than a Barbie, but still clearly an adult, and dressed in a yellow sundress and strappy sandals.

Homesick, part 1 of 3

Our house wasn’t there. Mr. Starrett’s house was on the left, with his red F-150 in the driveway, and the Petrovs' house was on the right, with no cars in the driveway but all their super-early Christmas decorations on the porch and lawn (it wasn’t even Halloween yet) — and there was nothing between them.

Review: Dragonsword trilogy by Gael Baudino

The Dragonsword trilogy by Gael Baudino consists of Dragonsword, Duel of Dragons, and Dragon Death. I first looked into it because I’d heard of its having strong TG elements, and though the covers were unpromising, looking like fairly generic high fantasy, I was pleasantly surprised to find it much better and more original than I expected.

The Monster Mash -- a TG Mixed Tape

When a coven's spell to spice up their Halloween party goes wrong, it affects everyone in costume for thousands of miles, instead of just the people at their party. See how it affects people from Tokyo to Boston in seven stories by MrSimple, Rellawing, Roberta J. Cabot, and Trismegistus Shandy.

Trust Machines: OTP

Ben and Amanda cosplay as their favorite superheroes for Halloween, and run into some old friends at a Halloween block party. But since the appearance of the Venn machines, Halloween cosplay has taken on a new dimension.

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