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FLIPSIDE
AUTHOR'S NOTE
PROLOGUE
CHAPTER I
CHAPTER II
CHAPTER III
CHAPTER IV
CHAPTER V
CHAPTER VI
CHAPTER VII
CHAPTER VIII
CHAPTER IX
CHAPTER X
CHAPTER XI
CHAPTER XII
CHAPTER XIII
CHAPTER XIV
EPILOGUE

CHAPTER VIII

Mike sighed and looked down at Deb. Her head moved rhythmically between his legs. He closed his eyes, leaning his head back against the headboard.

Something felt different. Her tongue seemed to press harder and he felt something hard rubbing the sides of his shaft. He almost decided to ignore it, thinking it was some technique that she had never used before. It felt so good, and so different, that he looked anyway; planning to tell her how much he liked it.

John looked back up at him, a smile tugging the sides of his snout. His thin lips were wrapped firmly around him.

Mike screamed, snapping awake. He jumped involuntarily, climbing half-way up the headboard before stopping himself. The now-familiar surroundings of his new bedroom replaced Deb’s in the moonlight. He felt the uncomfortable bulge in his underwear dwindle quickly.

He sunk down onto his knees, leaned against the headboard, and slowed his breathing. That was the third time a nightmare like that had awakened him.

His door opened halfway and John looked in, one of the guards peering over his shoulder. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah, I’m fine." he replied, sitting down and pulling the sheet up to his waist. "I just had a bad dream."

"The same one you had last night?"

"Yeah."

John walked in and sat at the foot of the bed. "Want to talk about it this time?"

"No," he answered, rubbing his face, "It was just a nightmare, for crying out loud."

"A bad enough one to make you scream, it appears; and one hell of a scary scream it was. They say it’s better to talk about them. Keeps them from coming back."

"I don’t want to talk about this one. Thanks, anyway. Go on back to bed. I’ll be fine."

"Okay," John said with a sigh as he stood, "Let me know if you change your mind."

"Sure. Sorry I woke you up."

"No problem. See you in the morning."

"See ya."

John left, closing the door behind him. The room again fell into moonlit darkness. Mike sat there, his face in his hands, and cried.

They dropped their shirts onto the porch and stretched. John asked a guard to go buy a paper.

They started jogging and Mike realized that he felt stronger than he had last time. He hadn’t noticed just how badly weakened he had been by his ordeal.

After jogging, they finished their workout with more push-ups and crunches. Mike added one-armed, diamond-handed, and spread-armed push-ups to their routine, completely exhausting them both.

"You did better this time, if I remember correctly." John said when Mike collapsed after his last crunch. "Your energy is boundless."

"You’re just a wimp. I think my body has finally waken up. I wish my head would."

"Do you honestly think you could dream up such a wonderful, dashing, charming, handsome, sexy guy like myself on your own?"

"No, I guess not."

They went in to take their showers. John suggested that they could conserve water by showering together.

"Have you ever heard of satyriasis?" Mike asked as he pulled his socks off.

"Of course. Have you ever heard of ‘abstinence is bad for you?’"

"Get me Michelle Pfieffer and I’ll stop abstaining."

"Who’s that?"

"A gorgeous actress."

"Won’t find her here. I do know of a Michael Pfieffer, though. He was in The Witches of Eastwick. I guess you’ll just have to make do."

"Michael Pfieffer? Well, that makes things easier."

"What do you mean?"

"Well, I’ve been wondering how our worlds could be anything alike with all of your women dying; not to mention the other important things. Women have played a huge part in history and entertainment. From what you just said, I assume that most of the important ones have been replaced with men instead of never existing."

"Sounds too easy. It has to be more complicated than that."

"I’m sure it is, but that does explain a few things. I wonder how many actresses have male counterparts here?"

"We’ll compare notes sometime."

"...And meanwhile, you’ll just have to take your own shower."

"One of these days, Mike, you’re going to give in to the inevitable; and I’m going to be waiting. Sooner or later, you’ll want me too. I’m irresistible."

Mike laughed, walking into the master bathroom. "You’ll be the first to know, I promise."

"I’m serious!" John called out as the bathroom door closed.

"I know." came the muffled response.

"Just a kiss? That’s all I ask! Just one kiss to tide me over!"

To his surprise the bathroom door opened and Mike came out, grinning. "Tide you over until what? What makes you think you’re due for more?" He walked up to John and planted a quick peck on his furry cheek. Without a word, he turned and headed back into the bathroom.

John recovered. "That was a kiss?" he managed to ask, smiling stupidly.

"What did you expect, tongue?" Mike asked from inside the bathroom.

"You don’t have to talk loud, I can hear you. And well, maybe a little."

Inside the bathroom Mike looked at himself in the mirror and thought. Maybe that peck on the cheek wasn’t such a good idea. He was being a tease, and the thought made him sick. He stared deeply into his own eyes, trying to sort out the feelings hidden there.

"All right, fuck it." he said quietly, coming to a quick decision before he changed his mind. "Maybe this’ll hold him off for a while and keep Doug off my back."

He opened the door and poked his head through. John was still standing there with that stupid grin on his face. He walked up to him, and John’s smile faded gradually as he approached. "I’ve never kissed a werewolf before."

"You’re serious?" John asked, amazed.

"Are you?"

"Yeah, I guess." came his reply. He seemed nervous.

Mike felt worse. "Well then, kiss me before I change my mind. You don’t get a second chance."

John inched his head slowly forward, swallowing audibly. Mike closed his eyes and tried to imagine that he wasn’t about to kiss a guy werewolf.

At the last possible moment he almost changed his mind, but decided not to. He had no desire to kiss a guy, even a furry, surreal one, but he had to know if he could. His current situation didn’t offer too many options, and Doug might soon find a tactful way to bring the subject up again.

He opened his eyes briefly, meeting John’s just before their lips touched. They closed their eyes as their tongues briefly met.

A short moment later Mike broke it off, opening his eyes and pulling his head away.

His mind was a complete blank. He had expected to feel revulsion, guilt, or any one of a dozen negative feelings; but he felt nothing. It was a nice kiss though, and that thought made him blush deeply.

John opened his eyes as Mike pulled away, meeting those beautiful blue ones. His heart was racing and he shook slightly all over. It was probably the single most exciting thing he had ever done. He wanted desperately to do it again. Only, he thought, a lot longer and deeper. He saw Mike blush and smiled. "That was incredible." he said breathlessly.

Mike’s blush became even brighter and John’s face soon flushed also. Mike didn’t say anything as he looked down between them.

"Good? Bad? Indifferent?"

"Uh," Mike began, "Good, I guess. I’m going to take my shower."

With that he turned and disappeared into the bathroom. John stood there, unable to move. His heart was slowing and he stopped shaking. He couldn’t stop smiling, though. It was so cute how Mike had blushed.

He came to his senses and headed for the kitchen to get a glass of water for his suddenly dry throat. He practically bounced down the hall, replaying the kiss in his mind. He heard Mike’s shower come on behind him.

"Success! Success!" he cried out, partially able to keep his voice down.

"What?" a guard asked, walking in from the living room.

John filled a glass and leaned on the counter. "I kissed him!" he said happily, shaking his head and taking a few sips.

"You’re kidding!"

John just beamed at him.

"Well, how was it?"

"I’ll never tell!"

"Come on, I’m armed! Tongue?"

John’s smile widened, exposing his fangs. "It was incredible, and it wasn’t even a big one!"

"Details!"

John couldn’t contain himself. He repeated their conversation, ending with Mike ducking quickly into the bathroom. "I think he broke his own record for the brightest blush."

"So why aren’t you in the shower with him?"

"Give the guy a break, Joe. This isn’t easy for him. I wanted to kiss him again, but he ran off before I came to my senses. I felt hypnotized."

"John, I do believe that you have just achieved first base."

"Three more to go!" John cheered, finishing his water.

"Batter up and good luck." Joe said, walking back into the living room. He sat by the window and picked up a pair of binoculars. "Lucky son of a bitch."

Mike stepped into the shower, sliding the door closed behind him. "I can’t believe that I just kissed a guy!" he said aloud, running his hands over his face. "What in the hell was I doing? I’ll never be able to keep John off of me now. What kind of an idiot was I to think that giving him a kiss would keep him away? I was hoping he wouldn’t like it, but that ‘cat that just got the canary’ look on his face proved that one wrong. I kissed a guy! Oh, shit, shit, shit!"

He grabbed the ‘soap’ bottle and lathered his hair, which was starting to get long. His natural wave was starting to appear on the top and back.

He decided to let it grow. Maybe they’ll be impressed. Either way, it made lathering his body a lot easier. The werewolf soap didn’t suds up too well on bare skin.

"He’s going to want to do it again, I’m sure." he said as he transferred the suds onto his body. "Shit, shit, shit."

He rinsed off and stepped out, drying in front of the mirror. His hair looked longer than it felt, now that he looked at it. The back was nearly to his shoulders. Even wet, it seemed thicker; and flowed from the off-center part in loose waves. "My hair hasn’t been this long since college." he said idly as he put on clean clothes. He grabbed the comb John had bought for him. It was a good ten inches long so they could comb their backs. He smiled at the thought as began combing and headed into the hallway.

John was in the main bathroom. The door was open and he was standing in front of the sink, wearing a pair of shorts and combing the fur on his chest and stomach. He was still fairly damp, and reached the comb around to his back and began combing. He smiled at Mike. "God, your fur is getting long."

"I know. I needed a haircut before this all started."

"You cut that too? Why not just let it grow?"

"Because the longer it gets, the harder it is to take care of."

"How long can it get?" John asked, putting his left leg on the counter and combing.

Mike looked on and smiled. "As long as I let it."

John’s ears perked up and his eyebrows jumped. "Really? You mean it could grow all the way down to, say, your waist?"

"That would take forever, but yeah, it could. I’ve seen pictures of women with hair all the way down to their ankles."

"No kidding? Let yours grow!"

"Not that long! I might let it lay on my shoulders, but that’s about it. It still has to be trimmed occasionally to keep the ends from splitting."

Mike’s hair was now dry, and John stepped over. "Let me feel it. I haven’t had the chance yet."

"If you insist." Mike said, turning his head.

John ran his fingers through his hair, gasping in surprise. "It’s so soft!"

"It’s average, I guess."

"Softer than any fur I’ve ever felt. Wow."

"Your soap does it good. Okay, okay." Mike said, pulling away and finishing with the comb. "That’s enough."

"You could charge admission for that."

"Five bucks a minute." Mike said, putting his comb on the counter beside John’s.

"I’ve got a twenty in my wallet."

"For twenty you can have ten minutes."

"Ten minutes! Where’s my checkbook?"

"Maybe it won’t be so hard to make money after all. I’ll just sit around, get fat, and take your money while you play with my hair."

"Play with what?"

"Hair only!"

"If I remember correctly, and I do, you have hairs in strange places."

"That’s an extra seventy-five, up front, for each minute."

"Seventy-five bucks a minute! For that much I should get the whole works. Hell, for that much you should be my love slave all night! Where’s my checkbook?"

"The only check involved will be a rain check." Mike said as they walked to the kitchen.

"You’re being a spoil sport again."

"I kissed you, didn’t I? Do you know how hard that was?"

"Once." John said, stepping closer as Mike rooted through the cupboard for something to eat.

"If I kiss you again, you’ll probably lose control and rape me. Pancakes?"

"Sure, and I promise I won’t rape you. I won’t even grope you."

"Maybe later."

"What’s the difference between now or later? I brushed my teeth. Besides, I’m hooked."

"I knew it, damn it!" Mike said silently. He sighed, trying to think of something to say.

"Okay, okay, I’ll wait. I’m not about to be accused of being pushy. I will keep that rain check in mind, though."

Mike walked to the phone and picked up a note pad. "John, I-O-U one kiss, due at a later date." He signed and dated it and held it out to John.

"The rain check came up when we were talking about you being my love slave all night."

Mike just smiled and stuffed the paper into the fur on John’s chest. He walked over to mix the batter.

They made the pancakes and took them into the dining room where the morning paper was waiting. A back copy of the Sunday paper, obviously used, was underneath it.

A picture of Mike walking though the mall surrounded by guards was on the front page. Above it was a headline in bold letters.

"Wereman goes shopping!" Mike read aloud. "Imaginative."

"Who’s that gorgeous guy walking beside you?" John asked, smiling and stuffing a huge fork full of pancakes into his mouth.

"I don’t know. But whoever he is, he probably has an ego problem."

"Get this." Mike said, reading the article aloud. "Michael Riggs, who’s appearance shocked the nation only days ago, surprised the local mall crowd with a visit yesterday. Surrounded by FBI guards and accompanied by the ever-present zoologist-cum-FBI liaison John Carter, he wandered the mall; stopping to buy clothes, CDs, shoes, and a pocketbook. According to NBC reporter Eric Downs, the first on the scene, he spent a total of about two hours in the mall." He paused to take a bite. "Where did these guys go to school? This grammar is terrible. It goes on to talk about what I bought and where. Jeez, they even found out what size underwear I use."

"The public must be informed."

"I think that knowing my underwear size is rather unnecessary."

"I hate to say this, but not too much of your life is going to be private."

"Yeah, but there has to be limits. I wonder how many illegitimate wereman babies are turning up in this week’s tabloids?"

He read the rest of the article while he ate, also reading the accompanying articles on page three. Much of the stories centered on speculation about what his future would hold, and mirrored many of his own doubts.

After finishing them he picked up the funnies. The usual twisted parodies of what he expected appeared. Calvin was equally cute as a tiny werewolf, and looked much like he had once imagined himself to back home.

Doonsburry was it’s usual over-political self. Mike was surprised to read that the story dealt with him. He showed it to John.

"So does today’s." he said, turning the Monday comics so Mike could read it. "Notice what he’s implying in the second frame?"

"Yeah, the jerk."

"There were talking about the same thing on page three."

"What do you think?"

"I don’t know. It’s kind of flattering, in a way."

"Are you sure you want that kind of stuff floating around? What would your parents say? Maybe you should let someone know that you don’t deserve that kind of reputation."

"What do you mean by ‘that kind of reputation?’ My parents already know that I like you. You’re not being insecure again, are you?"

"No, but the fact is that there’s no weight to these implications."

"There was one kiss and a promise for another."

"Yeah, yeah, yeah, but they’re not talking about one innocent kiss. As a matter of fact, this comic isn’t implying innocence at all. It actually says ‘moan’ here. Won’t people think that you’re some kind of pervert? Not that you aren’t," he added with a grin, "But not everybody’s gonna see things the same way. That’s Drakkar you’re wearing, isn’t it?"

"Yeah. It’s not too strong, is it?"

"No, but I can’t stand that stuff. Do you see what I’m saying?"

"Oh." John said quietly, sniffing himself. He looked back at Mike. "So? I’m my own person. If I want to screw a wereman, I will." he answered with a wink.

"I suppose now you want another kiss."

"Wouldn’t hurt."

"Why do we keep coming back to this?"

"Because it was great. Was it really so bad for you? I’d hate to think that I grossed you out."

"No, you didn’t. The problem’s mine. I’m just not...comfortable with it yet."

"Because I’m a man?"

"Yeah, to be honest."

"Mike, you have to understand that you’re not doing anything wrong. I’m not some weirdo sneaking kisses from guys behind closed doors. Everyone you meet is just like me. What we did earlier was the normal, even right, thing to do. You don’t have to feel guilty or wrong for doing it."

"I guess it’s just an adjustment I’ll have to make...and sex! Good Lord, I don’t even want to think about that!"

"I don’t want to sound pushy, but the only way to adjust is to allow yourself to open up a little. Maybe not sex just yet, but a kiss is just a kiss. They do have a habit of leading to other things, but that’s what they’re there for. They don’t necessarily have to, though. You know what I think? This is the psychology minor speaking here."

"What?"

"I think that being raised with adult women makes you feel like less of a man for kissing another one. I’ve been thinking about that for a while. Not bad for a minor degree, he?"

Mike toyed with the leftover syrup on his plate.

"You said before that you have homosexuals where you come from, right?"

"Yeah."

"What’s your opinion of them?"

"I think they’re wrong."

"Just wrong? Not gross or hideous or revolting? Do you hate them?"

"I don’t hate anybody. I just don’t accept their way of life, especially the one’s who claim to be Christians."

"Why them?"

"Because the Bible expressly forbids it. Well, my version does, anyway. If someone is homosexual, admits it, and asks God to help them change, the I have no problem. Sodom and Gomorra were destroyed because of sexual immorality. Homosexuality was a big part of that. So how can a Christian stay homosexual when he knows that the Bible forbids it? God destroyed those cities. He can’t just keep having sex with men and keep asking for forgiveness. Christ forgives when an effort is made not to repeat sin. No one is perfect, but you can’t keep committing the same sin over and over and expect to be forgiven. He doesn’t work that way."

"All of that is based on the standards of your world. Do you think we’re wrong?"

"I can’t, can I? Your physiology and bible don’t jive on that subject. But every time I think that I should just put my own prejudices aside and accept what God teaches here, I think: Wait! How can there be two Gods? Two teachings? Two sets of standards? God is God, period."

"Look at it this way. Our worlds might nearly match but we are two different races. I’m sure that there is only one God. He created everything and apparently that includes more than one world. But he did create humans and wolves differently. Maybe humans and wolves were just two different ideas that He had at the time. What He sees as right for your people and what He sees as right for mine don’t have to match. He evolved us differently. Naturally, with two different races, created differently, there has to be differences in values and lifestyles. When we were created, He also created how we should live."

"Well, there you go. I’m here, but I’m still human. Shouldn’t I follow what God determined is right for humans? You’re reinforcing my side of the argument."

"On the surface it might seem that way. But remember, you wouldn’t be here if God didn’t want you here. Who can say why? Maybe years from now you’ll have some kind of influence on someone’s life. Maybe that person would have died if you had never shown up. Think of all the science fiction written on that subject. You may be some kind of key that puts things right on both our worlds. No one can guess."

"But he did put you here. Would he do that and expect you to be miserable and lonely for the rest of your life? Would he reward one of his best children that way? Don’t look embarrassed," he said quickly when Mike smiled self-consciously, "You deserve that. There’s no way he could expect you to live life like you would have back home. It just isn’t possible here."

"Remember, we have the same God, the same Christ, the same Holy Ghost. As for making man in His image, being a spirit allows him to appear any way he wants. His standards for this world might not be the same as those for yours, but they are still His standards. Allowing yourself to accept our way of life would not be putting you at odds with God’s teachings. It would align you with them. If you ask me, I say that if He put you here you should follow the standards for here. Let me repeat myself. They are still His standards. If that’s how He wants people to live here, then that’s how people should live. All people."

"I guess that makes sense," Mike mused after mulling it over for a few moments, "But then again, so does Charles Manson sometimes."

John chuckled. "Make things any easier?"

"I don’t know. I guess so, but still..."

"What?"

"Well, it’s kind of hard to say. Uh..."

"Answer me one thing before we go on. Have you been praying, beside the times we did together?"

"A lot more than I used to, and I was no slouch then."

"What have you been praying for?"

"Aside from the usual, mostly more guidance, strength, and an open mind."

"Do you feel that they’re being answered?"

"That depends."

"On what?"

"It’s hard to say. I’m a realist, so I don’t waste God’s time asking that this all go away. But as for my prayers being answered, I really don’t know yet. Would I have kissed you two weeks ago when I first found out that you were g...homosexual? No. Why did I do it earlier today? Is God helping me along? Am I insulting God by not giving in? Should I consider it giving in? I really shouldn’t, because I’m not a quitter. I don’t want to feel as if I’d be giving in. I have to convince myself that it’s right."

"Okay, I understand that. You were about to say something earlier."

Mike hesitated.

"Is it the act itself, maybe?"

"Bingo."

"Any particular aspect or just everything?"

"Everything, I guess. The thought of doing those things makes me kind of ill. I mean, women do it all the time, but I just don’t know if I can bring myself to."

"Do you mean oral sex?"

"For starters."

"Why not, because you consider it to be a female sort of thing to do?"

"Yeah, you could put it that way."

"As gross as it sounds to me, you alluded to the fact once that humans, uh, lick females, right?" John asked, blanching in spite of his attempts to be neutral.

"Not everyone, but a lot of guys do."

"Women have oral sex with you?"

"Yeah."

"So basically, what you have is two people pleasing each other orally." John looked at him for a few seconds, saying nothing. Mike held his gaze while he thought that one over. It was essentially the same thing, when he thought about it.

That still didn’t make him want to do it. "You do have a point. But I still don’t know that I can actually do it, you know?"

"You also said that night that for you sex was an extension of love. With sex, people do all they can to please the one that they love, right?"

"Yeah."

"So when two men love each other, don’t you think that they would want to do everything they can to please each other? I’m talking about us, not you."

"I guess so."

"Don’t guess. If I was madly in love with, say, Mark; do you think that I would do all I could to make him happy?"

"Yes, you would."

"So, what’s the difference? If you loved a man, wouldn’t you want to please him, to express that love?"

Mike sighed. "Well, from that point of view, there’s no real difference; and I would. It’s just, you know, the thought of a guy...yuck!"

"Ah, now we get down to the nitty gritty." John said.

"You could say that."

John thought for a few seconds before continuing. "Can we be completely candid with each other?"

"It’s too late to ask; but since you did, I guess so."

"You’ve had females give you blow jobs, right?"

"Yes."

"Did she kiss you afterward?"

Mike shifted uncomfortably. He didn’t want to lie, but he knew that John was about to win another point. "All right, yes."

"Okay," John said, leaning on his elbows and scratching an ear, "And could you taste yourself if the kiss?"

Mike shifted again. "Isn’t this getting just a little too personal?"

"You agreed. Don’t evade the question."

Mike again considered lying, but he couldn’t. He considered himself to be an honest person and he didn’t want to start lying now. Besides, John was being nothing but honest and was showing genuine concern for his feelings. He figured that it was only right and fair to be honest. Anything less would be an insult to John’s sincerity. "Yes."

"Did you throw up in her face?"

Mike laughed. "No."

"Did it bother you at the time?"

"No."

"Even though you knew that you got a little of yourself in that kiss?"

"I didn’t really think it down to that level at the time."

"Maybe not, but looking back, did it bother you? Did you think ‘yuck!’ when she kissed you?"

"No."

"So why should it bother you now? It would be someone else’s, of course, and you would get a lot more of it; but why think that it would be so horrible? Remember, the females that did that to you probably liked doing it, or they wouldn’t have in the first place. If they like it, why is it so hard to believe that you could? You have the same taste buds and the next person."

"Everything you’re saying makes perfect intellectual sense, but this isn’t an intellectual issue."

"No, it isn’t. We’re talking about expressing love."

"Yeah, but wanting to please someone I love and wanting to suck on a dick are not the same thing."

"They are if it’s a man you’re expressing love with. That’s one of the things they’re going to need. If you love a man and you want to please him, that’s one of the things you do. Put yourself in the position of one of your females. Isn’t that what she was doing?"

"Okay, yeah."

"So replace the female with a male and what do you have?"

"I have myself giving a blow job to a werewolf."