Kophis takes a day off to do some shopping, but every time they use magic they get more mall-bimboified. Explicit.
One of the most useful bits of magic Kophis knew was their ‘unremarkability’ spell. An androgynous fox in a loincloth-dress and ancient silver jewelry wandering around a mall circa 2005 would normally be worthy of note—but one flick of their fingers, and mortals’ eyes glazed over and anything out of the ordinary from the last few minutes would slip out of their minds.
“So I can say whatever I want right now,” Kophis explained, oblivious to the quiet desperation on the face of the cashier who was trying to check them out. “For instance, I came here on a magic island. I parked it in the food court and disguised it as a smoothie stand.”
“Wow,” the cashier said. “Are you—”
“I brought it here because it’s been running low on chaos magic, so I’m letting it charge up. You’re supposed to use ley lines for that, not malls, but malls generate so much raw chaos magic that it cuts the charging time from a few weeks to a few hours.”
The woman behind the counter nodded, hoping they would get tired of talking soon. “Nice. Do—”
Kophis continued onward, enjoying the opportunity to brag consequence-free. “It’s because of all the capitalism crammed into one building. And using chaos magic inside of mall is like trying to light a match in a room full of propane. Mall are just that messed up. Of course, it’s no problem for an expert tarassomancer like myself. So, since I’ve got time to spare, I’m doing some shopping.”
Fixing Kophis with an annoyed glare, the cashier finally just asked, “Cash or credit?”
Kophis said, “Credit,” and made a show of snapping their fingers to summon a credit card out of thin air. The swirl of their own magic around their hand sent ripples through the flow of ambient chaos-magic energy that permeated the mall. As those ripples rolled over Kophis, it felt as if they’d had seltzer water poured over their brain. For a few moments they just swayed in place, slack-jawed and staring into space.
The cashier snatched the credit card out of Kophis’s hand, swiped it through the register, and then briskly shoved the sheets and matching pillowcases into the bag and pushed it across the counter. “If you’re such a cool wizard, how come you don’t have a ‘summon bedsheets’ spell?”
Kophis, the quick-tongued trickster, was at a loss for words. Their snout wrinkled and their ears folded back as they struggled to think of a scathing repartee. “It’s…look, summoned objects have different rules. Say I wanted to make a sheet ghost costume. I couldn’t summon sheets and enchant them…” Damn it. Now that they’d said it out loud, it sounded kind of silly. They’d have to scratch the sheet-ghost scheme and come up with something else.
All the cashier said was, “Cool,” but it was so thick with sarcasm it felt like a slap across the cheek.
“Whatever, mortal,” Kophis grumbled. They grabbed their bag and flicked an unremarkability spell at her on their way out, then nearly stumbled into the door as the mall’s chaos magic reverberated around them.
Unfortunately, there was no such thing as an unembarrassability spell.
26 March, 2023
Miffed by some hard-to-impress Minoans, Kophis takes matters into their own hands and turns theirself into a divine bull. Explicit.
Kophis sat on a hill that hadn’t been there yesterday with their chin propped against their hand and a scowl on their snout. Down below the chalky limestone outcropping where they sat, the settlement of Tira glimmered with firelight. The breeze that rolled in off the wine-dark sea carried the scent of food freshly cooked for the sake of some festival or another. It was all Linear A to Kophis; one festival was just as good as any other for their usual scam: show up claiming to be a deity, score some free festival food in the form of ‘offerings’, and spend the night transforming humans consequence-free.
Usually humans were easy to impress. Make a flashy entrance, show off with a spell or two, and they’d be tripping over their own sandals trying to ply Kophis’s favor with offerings. Sometimes just having the head of a fox did the trick. But the people of this backwater island clearly didn’t know a god when they saw one. Or when they saw a trickster pretending to be a god. Either way. One of them had even asked if they were a jackal, of all things.
With a dismissive snort Kophis rose from their seat and trudged back up the hill to the sanctuary at its peak, which, like the hill itself, also hadn’t been there yesterday. The ‘hill’ was less of a hill and more of a mobile island that could blend in with its surroundings wherever it was placed. Though it wasn’t exactly an island, and it wasn’t entirely not a hill either.
In any event, they could easily have picked their island-hill up, sanctuary and all, and moved it somewhere more receptive to their deception. But that wasn’t the point any more. The people of Tira had scoffed at their entrance, refused to believe their claims of godhood, and worst of all, they had called Kophis ‘petty’.
Now it was personal. The thought that they might overreact to some minor slight was preposterous. They’d show the people of Tira how un-’petty’ they were—and they had just the tool to do it, too.
5 July, 2022
A hyena girl comes down with contagious brutification that turns her into a big mean rubber shark. Based on BimboPhi's SkinSplit concept. Mature.
Sitting on her bathroom towel with her foot propped up on top of a backpack wasn’t how Thorn had wanted to spend her day at the beach. If she’d gotten her way she wouldn’t even be at the beach, but Sam liked swimming despite being a cat, and Cora was impervious to heat, so the two of them had talked her into coming along. It had taken less than an hour to get hurt again. It was just like she’d tried to tell them: hyenas weren’t made for beaches.
“You probably just stepped on a rock,” Sam said, standing up and brushing the sand from her knees. “No biggie. Me and Cora can go grab some first aid stuff from the lifeguard stand.”
Thorn shot Sam an annoyed glare. “I didn’t step on a fucking rock, there was something in the water and it scratched me. What if it’s that...SkinScratch thing?”
Cora had been hanging back and letting Sam do her thing, but now she piped up. “Catscratch Fever? I dunno, I didn’t see any eight-foot-tall monsters swimming around. I bet it was a poisonous fish and your foot’s going to fall off and die.”
Thorn said, “I’m serious.”
“So am I,” said Cora. “Like fifty people die of their foot falling off every year.”
Trying to win an argument when Cora was being this sarcastic was like trying to win an argument on the internet, so Sam cut them both off and told Thorn, “Well, whatever it was, just keep it clean till we get back.”
2 July, 2022
A young man turns into a witch vixen and must defend Halloween against all manner of magical mayhem! Mature.
This story is a standalone sequel to a previous Halloween story, The Party!
For months now, the fox had lingered in Mitch’s mind. He couldn’t say where she’d come from, or why she stuck around so stubbornly, only that in a burst of inspiration last November, he’d scribbled her in his sketchbook: a fox witch, with long curly hair and a pair of glasses perched on her snout. Every couple of weeks since, in between the work he was doing for class, he’d find himself drawing her again, and again, and again.
So as the days crept closer to Halloween, he wasn’t surprised that she was on his mind more often. It was the persistence that worried him just a little—she was always there in the back of his head. Even when he blanked out his thoughts, he could still trace her silhouette in his mind: narrow snout, tall ears, big, floppy hat. For the past few days she’d been impossible to get rid of.
Now it was late in the afternoon, on the thirty-first of October. Mitch sat at his desk in his room, doodling the designs he’d thought up for the fox witch’s spell book earlier that day in class. (He still hadn’t named her; nothing he found felt ‘right’.) The chime of a text message went off, but it took him several seconds to pull his mind out of tomes and grimoires.
A text from Chris was waiting for him:
‘Still coming to the party? maybe well remember this one lmao’
‘yeah, I am’, he sent back.
‘Sick! dont be late or well leave without you lol’
Mitch sat up and stretched both his back and his fingers. He could probably use a break from fox stuff anyway. Flipping his sketchbook closed, he got up and started getting his things together to head out—after taking a peek out the window.
Outside, the sun came in gold and heavy against the autumn leaves and stretched the shadows out like long strokes across the pavement. He lingered at the window for a moment, appreciating the bustle and color of everyone heading out to whatever Halloween get-together they had planned, whether in full costume or just tucked into a light jacket. Maybe he’d even see some of them at the party Chris was driving him to.
Speaking of which, he needed to get going or he’d miss his ride. Unlike last year, where he’d just thrown together a fox costume last-minute, he’d had time to prepare. And since the fox ears and tail now gave him a weird, queasy feeling when he saw them in his closet, he’d bought a cheap pirate outfit. Nothing fancy, just a hat made of folded felt, an eye patch, and a plastic sword to stick through one of the belt loops on his pants.
Just as he’d finished adjusting the eye patch and was reaching for his glasses, everything went dark with a loud whoosh, like a howling wind. This was not ‘a storm rolling in’ dark, nor ‘who turned out the lights?’ dark, nor even ‘accidentally put on two eye patches instead of one’ dark. He had been enveloped in the complete darkness of night. Not even the stars that filled the sky above him offered any illumination.
Where was he? What had just happened? And how were there stars in his room? He lifted his eye patch, for all the good that did, and shouted, “Hey!”
Acid green light flickered underneath him: trails of light, tracing a seven-pointed star around his feet, inscribed within a larger circle. As the last lines met, the light erupted around him and a great gust from underneath him blew his hair back and ruffled his clothes.
29 October, 2020
Blackshirtboy's birthday present is a free trip to Egypt Times, complete with a new catgirl princess persona. Mature.
Just as you settle down at your desk with some tea, your computer chimes with a new message:
You pause and double-check to make sure you’re not a panther, or a dragon, or a dog. You’re not. As far as you can tell, all your parts are still in their usual configuration. So you tell Kotep no, and wait for a minute or two to see if they’re going to send you something. When nothing comes right away, you shrug and grab your tablet pen so you can get to work.
A couple minutes into drawing, a warm draft ruffles the back of your shirt. You glance up at the window, which is wide open to the outside, with only a pair of linen curtains to soften the breeze. It’s not getting hot and sticky again, is it? Summer should be over by now. But the fresh air is light enough to soothe rather than stifle, and it carries the dry green smell of date palm blossoms into your room.
You narrow your eyes suspiciously at the window. It’s off, but you’re not sure how. You’re definitely not getting up to stick your head through, that’s for sure.
You turn back to your tablet and keep drawing.
The window stretches taller and taller and its panes disappear completely. Columns rise quietly from the receding walls, growing white and tapering until they blossom into wide lotus-petal capitals, painted red and green and gold. They meet the ceiling, then slowly and steadily push it higher and higher. Your small room isn’t so small any more.
You’re not paying attention to that, though. Your fingertips have turned black.
Black fur, smooth and short, sweeps over your hands. It ripples beneath your skin as it moves and reshapes your fingers, leaving them light and nimble. You barely have time to sit up in surprise before it moves up along your arms, like a pair of velvet gloves being tugged up past your elbows. The sleeves of your shirt cleave away from the rest, fall down your arms, and grip your arms as they re-form into gold armbands inlaid with blue lapis.
18 September, 2020
In the middle of her shift, a barmaid turns into a handsome wolf barbarian. Oh no! Explicit.
Rosemary never spilled a drop of ale if she could help it. She knew the tables of The Red Hart so well she could weave between them with her eyes closed, and had a hand so steady that she could have been an archer or a craftsman, if either had been acceptable jobs for a young woman. So the full flagon she had upended over the wolf-kin’s head was entirely on purpose.
“Oh, I’m sorry, milord,” she said, to make it clear she wasn’t sorry at all.
She tugged a gray cloth from her belt and tossed it over the wolf’s snout, then turned sharply and walked away, leaving him to mop the ale out of his dripping fur and braided beard.
She heard the other wolves cackling and growling in delight: “Haw, that maid’s got steel between her legs!” “More steel than Wulfric’s got, that’s sure.” “You bend over and lift your tail like that for all the humans, or just the pretty ones?”
Rosemary’s cheeks were tinged pink. In the back of her mind, she wondered if she might have been mistaken, whether she really had felt those claws digging into her chest, trying to sneak a handful while she was bent over the table. She knew enough not to listen to that voice, though.
As she stepped behind the bar, she set down the flagon rather loudly and said, “Molly.”
The other barmaid lifted her cheek from her hand and turned to look at her with a curious but blank expression, as if she had no clue what Rosemary might want with her.
“Stop making doe eyes at the beast-kin,” Rosemary said. “There’s other tables to serve.”
Molly sighed. “Isn’t it exciting though? A whole pack of barbarians, right here in our tavern.”
“If by barbarians you mean Northerners and by exciting you mean a lot of work, then yes,” Rosemary said. She fetched a couple of mugs from behind the counter, and set them pointedly next to Molly’s arm. “The table by the fireplace has been asking about their mead.”
The mugs clinked together as Molly picked them up, then leaned in close and lowered her voice. “What if one of them wants to take me back to his room and fuck me like an animal? And then he carries me off to his longhouse to dress me in furs and make me his bride...”
Rosemary said, “Well, until that happens you’re still on your shift, so get to it.”