At This Rate I’ll Never Turn Into a Girl!
This story was basically written as an excessively long joke. The entire point is that there are constant jumping-off points for a fairly standard premise but it doesn’t take advantage of any of them. Side note: AJ is my best attempt at an underwritten stereotypical female friend.
It started out just like any other day. I was hanging out at the arcade with my two best friends, AJ and John. Despite her name, AJ is a girl. She's kind of a tomboy. She hangs out with us boys, obviously, and she plays video games. She still wears make up and dresses, though. John is cool. He's a lot like me in personality, but more laid back. He's also half a foot taller than me, and has the start of an impressive beard. I wish puberty would hurry up!
“There's no way you'll beat me!” I screamed at AJ. “I'm the master at Space Blaster. I have all three top score spots!” I pointed to the display, which showed “ASS” in the top three spots. AJ groaned.
“You're so immature. I can't believe you put—you know, that.” I winked at her.
“Just be glad I didn't put anything worse.” She sighed and rolled her eyes.
AJ was the most mature of the three of us, and it was probably good we had her around. She was the voice of reason.
“Fine,” she said. “I'll wipe you off the scoreboard.”
“Yeah! Wipe his ASS!” John hollered. AJ rolled her eyes again.
“You wanna bet something?” I challenged her. She sighed.
“Okay. If you lose, you have to dress like a girl for a week.”
“WHAT? Fuck no!”
“What, so you think being a girl is a bad thing? That's sexist.”
“No, there's just no way I want to put up with the shit I'd get.”
AJ sighed. “Fine. Five dollars.”
“Affirmative.” “You're such a nerd,” she complained.
I fed in a quarter and selected DUEL mode. I presented her the joystick.
“Ladies first.” She rolled her eyes.
She did pretty well in her round. She couldn't beat my killer combo, though! She sighed as all the alien ships blew up right before my timer ran out.
“A thousand? Damn, bro,” John exclaimed.
“That's not even counting the chain multiplier,” I bragged. AJ watched, eyes wide with horror, as the score doubled, and then tripled.
“Pay up,” I smarmed. She reluctantly dug into her purse and slapped a bill into my hand.
“Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet,” John and I chanted before high fiving. AJ sighed.
“You better not spend this on porn,” she lectured. I had the decency to look guilty.
By then it was almost four and AJ had to go to her dance class. I waved goodbye as her mom's compact pulled up and she climbed in.
“You wanna hang?” John inquired. I shook my head. “Nah, I got an essay due Monday I need to start on.” John laughed and slapped my back. “Classic Brian! Starting the day before.” I waved him off. “See ya later!” I shouted as I started my walk home. He waved before getting on his skateboard and riding off.
Maybe I wasn't paying enough attention. Maybe it was the driver's fault. Whatever happened, I was in a crosswalk and the truck didn't stop in time. The front of the truck was a few feet away when the driver saw me, and swerved sharply. The truck smashed into a lamppost and overturned. The side of the truck split open, and a weird green liquid sprayed on me. It felt like it was burning my skin. I screamed in pain and tried to wipe it off me, but only succeeded in spreading it around more. My skin was turning red, and almost looked like it was boiling with blisters. I fell to the ground as I felt everything go black.
I felt the world swimming into view around me as I woozily awoke. A man in a lab coat rushed to my side as I tried to sit up.
“The patient is awake!” he shouted. Several other people wearing labcoats and scrubs rushed into the room and started fussing with equipment around me.
The first man turned to me, and started talking. “You've been in a serious accident,” he informed me. “Humans were not supposed to be exposed to that chemical, not in that amount.”
“Fortunately,” he announced, “we've been able to cure your condition using a revolutionary new therapy. Nanotech! It's the future!”
“However,” he coughed, ”There were a few...side effects.”
Oh, god. What if I was some kind of monster? “Get me a mirror!” I shouted.
The doctor regarded me strangely. “A mirror?” he asked. “None of the side effects are external. They're not major. You just may find yourself to be slightly less...continent than you were before, and you should avoid eating bananas, at all costs.”
Thank god. I'd have to look up what “continent” meant later, but it seemed like I was okay. “I can go home?” I asked the doctor.
“As soon as you fill out the paperwork.”
The paperwork was long and tedious. I was sick of signing and initialing before I reached the end. On the last page was the bill. I screamed when I saw it.
“A million dollars!?'
The doctor cleared his throat, and looked away. “Revolutionary new therapies aren't cheap,” he informed me.
I was going to have to get a job.
My mom and dad rushed to the hospital as soon as they learned I was conscious. My mom fussed over me, while my dad stood back and looked aloof. “He's like this now,” she confided to me, “but you should have seen him earlier! He was out of his mind with worry.” My dad coughed and looked to the side. “Gladyou'rebetter,” he mumbled. My mom beamed.
As soon as I got home I started applying for jobs online. Most places actually preferred an online application these days. I guess no one wanted to deal with actual people. One online posting caught my eye. It was for a clothing store, but not just any clothing store. “Madame Olivia's caters to the most discerning and feminine women,” the post read. “We required dedicated and humble employees who appreciate fine clothing, and don't believe fine fashion should be relegated to yesteryear.”
I was fascinated. I always hated how most of the girls in my grade dressed, wearing jeans and t-shirts all the time. They might as well be boys! But here was a different place, a wonderland of lace and voluminous skirts. A place that loved the glamor that women used to have, before ugly, hairy feminists destroyed tradition. I applied immediately.
I also applied to several other jobs, at fast food restaurants and supermarkets. However, my heart was set on Madame Olivia's.
Unfortunately, I didn't get the job. The polite email I received informed me I lacked the necessary experience. That was no problem! I'd gain more experience and apply again!
I ended up working, instead, at the local Burger Hut. On my first day, AJ and John came in to see me.
“Haa! You look like such a douche in that paper hat,” John jeered. AJ scowled. “I think it's very mature of him to take responsibility,” AJ said. “You could learn some things from him.”
“You could learn some thing from him,” John mocked in a high-pitched voice. AJ whipped around and glared at him. “Would you care to repeat that?” she said icily. John gulped. “That's what I though,” she said, satisfied.
“Oh! There's a way you don't have to wear the hat,” AJ informed me. I sighed. “Please tell me you're not going to make fun of the hat. I though you were mature than that.”
“Well...it's not great,” she admitted. “The colors totally don't go with anything else you're wearing.” I rolled my eyes. Typical girl.
“That's not what I was talking about, though!” she exclaimed, getting back on topic. She showed me a flyer. “See? Burger Hut is looking for a new mascot.”
“But then I'd have to dress like a giiirl,” I complained. Burger Hut was known for their sexy mascot, the Burger Witch.
“Well, it's your call,” AJ said snootily. “I was just trying to help.”
I worked after school for the next several days. By the time Saturday came around, I realized I was feeling unusually tired. It was like I was fatigued all the time, or I was weaker than I used to be. I told my mom. I also thought my sex drive had gone down, but I wasn't going to tell my mom about that! “Are you sure it isn't just from the new job?” she inquired. “I'm sure it will take you some time to get used to it.”
“I'm fucking sure,” I insisted. Mom winced. “Please don't swear. Gosh, sometimes I wish you were more like your sisters,” she muttered. She says things like that a lot. I don't think she means anything by it, though.
Mom took me in to see the family doctor. They only had women's magazines in the waiting room. I silently cursed. I wanted sports magazines, or at least PC Mag. Bored, I flipped through an issue of Homemaker Monthly. Some of the women were pretty hot, but I found myself looking at their clothes more than at them. What was happening to me! I was turning gay or something.
Finally, a nurse called me in to see the doctor and measured me. For some reason, my height was an inch shorter than when it was last recorded. The nurse said it was probably just a mistake. Another nurse drew some blood, and took it to the lab. Finally, the doctor himself came in, holding a clipboard.
“I know what your problem is,” he announced. “Your hormone levels are off the charts.”
“Give it to me straight, doc!” I exclaimed. “Am I turning into a girl? Nothing else explains the changes I've been going through.”
The doctor looked at me like I had grown two heads. “No, if anything, it's the opposite.” I raised my eyebrows in puzzlement. “Your estrogen levels are the lowest I've ever seen. If this trend continues, I may have to prescribe you hormones.”
I sighed in relief. “So, if anything, these changes are actually a sign of how manly I am!”
The doctor sighed. “Sure, why not!” I couldn't wait to tell AJ!
After I got home, I was pretty hungry. I fixed myself a snack, banana with peanut butter. I know AJ thought I was weird for eating that, but it was pretty good! I had forgotten the doctor's warning.
Moments after I swallowed my first bite of banana, I felt my insides warping and churning. My stomach bulged out, and then suddenly sucked in. I was transforming! I ran to the bathroom, and looked in the mirror. I looked...the same. Suddenly, my stomach contracted again, and I was struck by an overriding, primal urge. I ran to the toilet and had violent diarrhea for several hours.
Fortunately, I recovered from the banana diarrhea by Monday. I headed into work, whistling. Suddenly, I stopped, and gasped. A sign in the locker room read that the manager would pay any mascot overtime rates! I could really use that money. I know the costume is embarrassing, but it was worth it. For time and a half, I could overcome even my greatest fears.
I marched up to the manager, and shook his hand. “Meet your newest mascot!” He looked puzzled. “Where is she?” I laughed and slapped him on the back. “It's me, silly.” Silly?! I never used to use words like that.
The manager hesitated. “I don't think that that's a good idea,” he said. “The Witch is supposed to be a young, attractive woman. Anything else would dilute the brand.”
“I bet, with AJ's help, I could pass as hot, young woman!” I exclaimed. “With the right make up and wig, and a little padding, guys would be drooling over me!” Not that I liked guys! Why would I phrase things like that?
The manager shuddered and shook his head. “No, and that's final.”
When I arrived home after my shift, I complained to my mom. “The manager wouldn't let me be the mascot, because she's supposed to be a girl. I could be a girl!”
My mom patted me on the head. I wish she wouldn't baby me like that.
“You know, sweetie,” she said. “If you're interested, I have some of your sisters' old clothes you could try on.”
“Gross!” I shouted, and flung her hand off of me. “I don't want to dress up like a girl, I just wanted to get paid more.”
“Sor-reeee,” Mom said, and she never brought up the subject again.
On Wednesday, I got a day off from Burger Hut. I was hanging out at the arcade, by myself, honing my Space Blaster skills. Suddenly, John ran up, panting.
“Have..you...seen...AJ?” he panted. I shook my head. “Negatory.”
“Damn!” he cursed. “I told my cousin I have a really hot girlfriend, and I was hoping AJ could pretend to be her.”
I shook my head. “I don't think AJ would go for that.”
“Well, do you know anyone else? Anyone?” John pleaded. I shook my head. Girls, except for AJ, tended to stay away from us. Far away.
“Sorry, dude. I can't think of anyone.” I was struck by a sudden though. “Unless...”
“What if I pretend to be your girlfriend?” I proposed to John. “I bet if I do things right I'll totally fool your cousin!”
John stuck his finger down his throat, and mimed gagging. “I'm not that desperate.”
Just then, AJ arrived. “Hey, AJ!” I exclaimed. “I bet you can help me look like a girl.”
She gave me a weird look. “Why would I know anything about drag?” she asked quizically.
John elbowed me. “What Brian here meant to say,” he insisted, “was that it would most humbly appreciated if you would deign to be my ersatz date.”
“My lady,” I added. John elbowed me again.
AJ laughed. “Sure,” she said. “Should be good for a laugh.”
I smiled and looked happy for them, but, secretly, I was crushed. At this rate, I would never turn into a girl!
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