Allison Zero - Book 1 - Part 3

A dark metallic hallway on a space station, functional and industrial with signs of advanced technology, with a large hexagonal window with a view of a star field.

Allison 3260, formerly Patryk 6112, has been confirmed by the court—the interpreters of law on the welcoming station—as a Woman of Child Bearing Age, after a now former friend, Adam, reported her to the authorities for ‘imitation.’ She thought she was all alone when Adam left her, telling her to, “Enjoy your new life,” until an excited Angie, a woman she’s drank with before, sought her out and gave her two options; go shoe shopping with her because no women would be caught dead in a pair of ugly boots, or go to her women’s doctor to get checked over.

Allison chose the doctor. Doctors are private, and maybe a doctor could help? Or tell her what the hell was happening? And women’s doctors are actually doctors, educated and trained voters, experts in medicine. Allison, however, has no idea what that means for her. A doctor means privacy and maybe some answers, but who knows what a doctor—a voter—actually wants with her? Especially on a weekend; the two days everyone takes off if possible. Allison already knew this was serious, but what does all this actually mean? How has she legally become a woman? Surely this is impossible?

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Allison and Angie walked from the mess hall to Allison’s first appointment with a women’s doctor. As they reached the exit of the hall Allison tripped from the lack of laces in her boots. That was just the way women wore them, at least when they were the fashion a few years ago, and Allison had no other shoes.

It was her decision to see the doctor rather than go shopping for appropriate footwear, which were the choices Angie presented, and Allison really didn’t want to be alone as a new woman; she had to do one of Angie’s options. At least the doctor would be private, and maybe she could help.

As Allison picked herself up from her stumble Angie reached out and took her by the hand. “I’m fine, I think. I’m OK. It’s the laces,” Allison said.

“That’s the point of no laces,” Angie said. “Anyway, you already know why women hold hands.”

“I do?” Allison asked.

Angie shook her head. “Actually... You? Who you were? Maybe you don’t...” Angie inhaled through her nose as they both continued their walk towards the elevator, still holding hands, then she continued, “Most men understand when women are holding hands they’re going somewhere. They have something to do, maybe a date to go to, men to meet. A plan! You get it?”

Allison nodded, and despite Angie’s grip stumbled a second time. A man walking nearby reached out towards Allison but she’d already recovered as he came close so she just smiled an embarrassed smile at him. “I get the no laces thing now, as well,” Allison said. Angie laughed.

After a few minutes walk, and a few more stumbles, and embarrassed smiles from Allison, along with a few laughs from Angie at Allison batting suitors away they’d arrived at the elevator. “I hope there’s no men in here,” Allison said.

“Bring up your calendar,” Angie said. Allison held up her conn and looked at her calendar. There was actually an open appointment for a doctor on Hospital Floor F3. “Send it to your wrist and call the elevator.”

Allison swiped her wrist against the call pad and when the elevator arrived no-one was in it. Allison sighed as they stepped in and the elevator announced ‘Hospital Floor F3 – Female Carriage.’ Angie simply said, “Confirm.” And it was on its way.

“Are female carriages just for going to doctors?” Allison asked Angie.

“You can request one if you have a particular need. There should be an icon for it in your new rainbow conn,” Angie said. “They’re mostly approved, but no-one really calls one unless they’re in a bad way or feeling shitty. Don’t come to rely on them.”

Angie still didn’t leave go of Allison’s hand. Then the elevator arrived, calling out the correct floor.

Allison’s eyes opened wide along with the doors. The lobby before them was bright, not glaringly so, just comfortable. The walls weren’t dark, there was little metal. The lighting was even, and everywhere, and the inrushing air felt clean. As though it was easier to the breathe there.

Angie dragged Allison out and began marching somewhere. Allison wanted to slow down because she was seeing something she’d rarely seen, and certainly never in these numbers; art; actual original art framed and hung on the walls. She could see on some of the paintings there was texture to them. They weren’t just prints.

Allison followed along, being pulled, until they finally came to a stop in a reception area and an older woman, a citizen, said, “Allison 3260?”

“Yeah...” Allison said, nervously. The woman held out a reader and Allison swiped.

“Room 3, Angie. Take her straight in. Doctor Grace will be right there.”

Angie smiled at the woman behind the desk and, yet again, pulled Allison behind her and towards a room. It wasn’t sparkling clean, certainly not the image of an actual doctor’s office Allison remembered from her encyclopedia. The walls were yellow, there was a desk with computer on top of it, some leather seats, one on wheels. There was a thin bed, more a bed-cum-chair, with metal thingies at the bottom of it, some medical equipment on stands and hanging from the ceiling. Around two sides of the wall were a couple of metal tables with implements on them.

“Go on! Strip! Up on the bed!” Angie said as she sat in a seat.

“No!”

“The doctor will tell you anyway.”

“But...”

“Are you embarrassed with me here?” Angie asked. “Are you embarrassed about your body?”

Allison hadn’t actually thought it but yes, that was it. Her body was wrong. Certainly for who she was now. “Well... Yeah.”

“Tell the doctor that,” Angie said. “She’ll—”

“Ladies!” the doctor said, the door sliding back. She was tall, very thin, not very beautiful but not ugly either. Just normal. She looked to be in her early thirties and wore green scrubs and men’s trainers, with her blonde hair curving around her face framing it, making her seem softer, and also somehow more professional. “My name is Grace, and you must be Allison.” She held out her hand and Allison shook it. “Pleased to meet you. And you have nothing to worry about. I’ve seen everything before.”

“I’m not sure you have,” Allison said.

“Maybe not,” Doctor Grace said. “But since Angie messaged me I’ve been reading. You’re rare Allison. Not unique. Unique for this station but there are a few cases like yours in the medical books, historically, at least. It just took some digging. The medicine is sound.”

Allison sighed and didn’t know if she felt relieved or disappointed. “You know what to do about me?” Allison asked. “The court knows?”

“I know what to do for you, if you choose it. What the court knows I have no clue. They’re a bunch of humourless, old farts but I did see them try to make a joke in your ruling. Good for you, girl!” Doctor Grace said.

Angie laughed.

Allison said, “Girl?!” sounding annoyed.

“Oh, yeah!” Angie said. “Voters have no issues calling citizens a boy or girl. They’re constantly doing it. At least Doctor Grace does it because she’s nice. Now, come on! Strip and up on the bed.”

The doctor laughed and rested her hand on Angie’s shoulder. “Once you stop having babies, Angie, you’ll make a great healthcare worker, if you want. And she’s right, Allison, clothes off. You can see we don’t have fangs. You can leave your stockings and boots on.”

“I think I’ll walk barefoot from here on in,” Allison said, taking off her boots as she began to strip. She couldn’t handle any more stumbling and gallant, pervy men coming to her rescue.

“Should I tell her?” Angie asked Doctor Grace.

“Learning experience...” Doctor Grace said. They both laughed, although Allison didn’t know why. Soon she was naked apart from her stockings and suspender belt, blushing as she sat up on the bed. “Legs in the stirrups.”

Allison realised what the metal things were as she spread her legs, placing them in the contraptions, with the doctor spreading them wider again and locking the metal firm. “I feel... I don’t know.... Exposed,” she said, looking uncomfortable.

“Yeah,” Doctor Grace said. “I’m sorry, honey. It’s much nicer when your husband is the reason you’re like that. It’s never pleasant here, and there’ll be worse at later appointments, but for now there won’t be any physical examinations.” She moved a camera on an arm and a series of rapid flashes went off as it oscillated by itself. “That’s that. You can dress again.” Doctor Grace sat down on the chair with wheels. “I’ll need your thigh in a minute depending on what we decide. What is it you want, Allison?”

“What do you mean, ‘What do I want?’” Allison asked.

“That’s exactly what I mean, what do you want for yourself? What do you want me to do for you?”

“What can you do? Anyway, citizens don’t get a choice in their medical treatment,” Allison said.

Doctor Grace snorted, but there was no cruelty or mocking to it, more amusement. “Can you get pregnant, Angie?” the doctor asked, turning towards Angie.

“Nope!” Angie said. “I certainly hope not. Can I? Could I?” Concern flashed over Angie’s face.

Doctor Grace shook her head, with certainty, at Angie, while Angie looked relieved, as Allison said, “I’m so sorry, Angie. Not every woman can. It’s terrible, I know—”

“Terrible? For me? No way! I don’t want to get pregnant. Not yet. I’m on contraception.”

Allison was stunned. “Contraception! What!? That’s—”

“Most women are on it,” Doctor Grace said. “With all the sex people are having can you imagine how many babies there’d be? Doctors would never have a day off. We already have too much to do. I’m here for you on a Saturday. Someone else last Sunday. I haven’t had a proper weekend off in almost two months!” Doctor Grace didn’t look annoyed, though, she actually looked quite proud.

“Yeah, when you’re having sex you’ll get contraception,” Angie said. “Obviously don’t tell any men.” She was totally nonplussed by this. As though saying being on contraception, something highly illegal, was a totally normal thing.

Then words came straight out of Allison’s mouth bypassing any thought process, “But a woman’s purpose is to get pregnant. To keep the population of the station in balance.”

Doctor Grace nodded. “Yes, in balance. Contraception keeps a balance. If the balance is wrong we’ll talk to some women not trying but who are thinking about it. Who might be ready, mentally. We haven’t had to forcefully stop contraception in living memory. And women also keep men happy; men like to fuck. Women do too, of course, but most men are terrible at it. You’ll have to try a few, maybe more than a few—unless you stumble over someone you’re bothered to teach—to find someone who pleases you. Men don’t care once they cum. Which is a point. Did you, Allison? Did you enjoy sex? Before...” Doctor Grace waved a hand at Allison, now buttoning up her blouse.

“Enjoy sex? I guess. It was fine... OK, I suppose. It did its purpose,” Allison said.

“‘Its purpose?’ Yes... Yes, OK... I think you’ll definitely enjoy the changes this medication will bring,” Grace said, as she mixed some vials into an injector. “You’ll grow breasts, your fat will redistribute. All over your body. Don’t worry about putting on a little weight, I’ll tell you when you need to be careful about it again. Your body hair, especially on your face, will say bye-bye. Your penis will more or less disappear. In a few months we’ll get rid of what’s left of your testicles. Then your scrotum will be nicely flat with no bulges in your panties. You’ll love it!”

“My penis will disappear!!”

“It will turn into what you want it to be and you will gain a lot of pleasure from it with the right man. You’re 24?” Doctor Grace said, glancing at the computer. “How often had you had sex since your twentieth birthday?”

“Five or six times,” Allison said.

“Five or six times?” Angie rolled her eyes and shook her head. Allison nodded confirmation while grimacing, she knew it wasn’t a lot. Then Doctor Grace continued, “And it was just ‘fine’ each time? I really shouldn’t give you a choice in this. This is what you need. Really, really. Totally obviously. Few other doctors would but I like to be the favourite doctor. It gives me the warm tinglies to know I’m loved,” Doctor Grace said. Both her and Angie laughed.

“It’s a big decision,” Allison said. “I don’t know. What do you think?”

Angie was staring at Allison like Allison was the stupidest woman in the galaxy.

Doctor Grace looked deep in thought for a few seconds. “I can make an appointment with you for a month’s time but if you wait I think you’ll be messaging me within a week, probably on my day off, asking for it as soon as possible.” She rolled her seat towards the desk with the computer and raised the monitor a little higher so everyone could get a look at it. She tapped a few buttons and a naked Allison came up on the large screen. A few waves rippled across the display and the image of Allison rotated while rendering her into a 3d image. “How does that make you feel?” Doctor Grace asked.

“It’s just me,” Allison said.

Doctor Grace tapped a few more keys and Allison’s body began to morph. She began to look a little more feminine, then more, then a lot more. Her penis had shrunk to what was indistinguishable from a clitoris, she had breasts, her face was attractive, she had some degree of hips, and a waist. As the image rotated she had a bum. Her waist was more obvious.

Allison thought of seeing her face with female hairstyles just a few hours earlier in the shower, swiping back on the controls to see herself with the hairstyle she had now. The one where she fell in love with herself. “Is that how I’ll look?” Allison asked, voice timid. Angie put her arm around her, holding her in tight.

“We can’t predict. There or thereabouts. Did you know your biological mother? Get any warnings about meeting biological sisters, or other female relations?” Allison shook her head. “Then we really can’t say. Whatever happens you’ll be much happier with it. You’ll feel better about your body and you’ll feel better mentally.”

Allison nodded. “OK. Yes... I think. If I’ll be... Better, I guess...” she said. “Will I? Do I have anything to worry about?”

“Lift your skirt,” Doctor Grace said as she began to fiddle with the injector. “And no. A little pain. Maybe a little more than a normal female puberty. Your breasts might hurt a little, your penis. Have someone give them a massage. Lots of massages. Not a privilege allowed during a regular puberty, as you well know.” Angie started to laugh. “Keep yourself well fed. I’ve said that already. I’ve included something to change bone structure, ever so slightly. You probably don’t need anything more than that. Big changes can be extremely painful rather than just very painful if not done properly and I don’t feel capable. There’s a few doctors who rotate between various stations, rings, outposts, orbitals and planets who can do more if and when necessary but there are none here at the moment.

You’ll feel a little heavy, in the mind, for a week or so, get a boy to buy you a drink, tell him to hold you. The being held is probably more important than the drink but both go together. Maybe have a kiss or two, more. Enjoy yourself. You will be happier so it’ll come easily. You ready?” She held the injector over Allison’s thigh and looked at her. Allison nodded.

Allison felt a strange, sharp mixture of both coolness and heat at the point the injector injected into her thigh. She felt nothing else.

“You might start feeling that heaviness in the next two hours or so. Try not to worry about it. It’ll come and go over the next few days, maybe a week. You’ll probably begin to notice changes by tomorrow morning. You’ll certainly feel them.”

“Does Allison need monitoring? For thirty minutes or so?” Angie asked.

“I was waiting for that,” Doctor Grace said to Angie. “Yes, she does. But it’s more ninety minutes, minimum. I’ll walk you there.”

“I love my new, old friend so much,” Angie said looking at Allison. Allison grabbed her boots as everyone was making their way out the door. It was much easier to walk without them on.

Angie and Doctor Grace talked as everyone walked, while Allison kept looking at the art on the walls, enjoying the fresher air on the hospital level.

They arrived to what looked to be quite a nice restaurant. There was a serving area but it was tasteful, attractive, really. Inviting. “Does Allison need nourishment?” Angie asked.

“I think she does,” Doctor Grace said. “And you’re looking a little peaky too, Angie. I know it’s a hardship but I think I’ll have to force a pizza on you. Chicken and red pepper isn’t it? I hope you can struggle through.” Doctor Grace looked genuinely downcast as she shook her head.

Angie broke out into a big smile. “This is why everyone loves you, Doctor Grace.”

“Enjoy your day, girls. Angie, keep an eye on her for the next 48 hours or so. And Allison, enjoy your life. I’ll update your calendar with your next appointment. Any concerns message me. Get the special!” And with that Doctor Grace was gone, and somehow Allison was getting even further from the man, Patryk, she used to be. She even thought the name ‘Patryk’ in her mind but it didn’t feel like her name, not any more.

Angie ordered her pizza with the woman behind the counter, as well as the special for Allison. The woman was a citizen, from her dress at least, and she said, “It’s a Saturday, honey, I can drop them down to you. Take any table.”

They took a two person table nearby. There was an actual tablecloth on it, a thick tablecloth, with an array of glasses, and cutlery, even cloth napkins. There was a flower in a small glass vase between the two of them that Angie leant in to sniff. “Plastic,” she said.

Allison placed her boots next to her, on the ground, and as she sat up she felt a wave of dizziness.

Allison must have made a noise with the dizziness because Angie said, “Is everything OK? Do you want me to call Doctor Grace back?”

“No. It’s fine,” Allison said. “It’s what the doctor warned me about. Just give me a minute.”

Allison closed her eyes and tried to breathe steadily, in the quiet of an empty restaurant, waiting for the dizziness to settle.

She was starting to feel better, or was at least getting used to it, when the woman from the serving area came towards them. “The doctor prescribed this. ‘For the heaviness,’” she said, placing a carafe of red wine down along with another, larger carafe of water with ice in it. “She also said her friend was to check the wine to make sure no evil voters were poisoning citizens. Said she might have to check it repeatedly as some poisons are subtle. And if you ladies want any soft drinks just let me know. You’re not on sugar free for the moment.”

Angie smiled a big smile at the older woman as she walked away. “I think this is actually how voters live,” Angie said. “Can you imagine?”

“I couldn’t imagine any of this even yesterday,” Allison said, as Angie poured the wine.

“How are you feeling?” Angie asked.

“A bit better, still heavy.”

“I think I have some helpers if it’s bad,” Angie said.

“No, it’s not pain,” Allison said. “I don’t need anything for pain.”

Angie nodded, took a sip of the wine and said, “I don’t think it’s poisonous but we’ll have to drink the lot to be sure.” Allison laughed. It was a very genuine laugh. She felt it through her entire torso.

As she took a sip of the wine, the first wine she’d had in a year, she realised she felt good. Happy. Like never before. When she smoked what One had given her she saw who she was supposed to be, she believed in who she was supposed to be. Now it was like she was who she was supposed to be. She felt real. She felt normal.

“I don’t know what’s happening,” Allison said.

“Neither do I,” Angie said.

“It almost feels wrong to say this... But I’m happy. I’ve never felt so comfortable.” Allison sighed. Was that it? Was it this complex and this simple? Was there some massive fuck up somewhere, somehow, in something, that meant she was a woman, deep down? How? She had no clue but she was excited. “What’s it like being a woman, Angie?” Allison asked.

Angie began to talk, with a smile, as Allison closed her eyes slowly, smiling back at her friend.



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