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Thursday, September 1, 2016

Higher, Better, Faster, Stronger by Laisy Faire

ADMIN NOTE:  This is a story written by a good friend of mine.  She is a very good writer and I hope you enjoy:)
Smoking can be a way of life. It brings people together in the most amazing ways. Friendships are formed, commonalities are discovered—anywhere in the world, one can light up and be sure that they will find someone with whom they can share a powerful experience. Marijuana, pot, weed—it has many names, and many uses. It can alter one's mind, calm the nerves, and relax the soul. It can cure and inspire, but most of all it just feels good. Simon's love affair with the green began when he was a teenager, struggling to deal with the embarrassment of losing his hair thanks to a skin condition. The smoke delayed some of his hair loss, but more importantly it connected him to friends that didn't care that he was going to look like Professor Xavier by the time he was twenty. Since then, it had become a ritual, something that he could do every Saturday night during his gaming sessions. Whether he was with a group of friends around the kitchen table playing tabletops, or playing some online game with complete strangers, the ritual remained the same.

It was another typical Saturday night and the sickly sweet aroma of pot permeated into every nook and cranny of Simon's one-bedroom apartment. His stoner friends had left for the evening, but he was still enjoying his buzz and there was Rocket League to be played.

Nice shot! Nice shot! Nice shot!

The canned comments plastered the upper portion of his screen as he scored a goal thanks to a perfectly timed pass from his friend, Casey.

Great pass! Thanks! Simon sent back.

Revving motors, the thundering cheering of fans, and the explosion caused by another ball in the net followed. The blue aura of his computer screen lit the room as Simon racked up goal after goal. It might have been a team sport, but leading the team in goals always felt good even if it did lead to Casey complaining about him being a little bit selfish with the ball. His friend's complaints were only a mild annoyance though. In the end, if the team won they both had a good time.

What a save! What a save! What a save! What a save! What a save! Simon spammed the chat as a member of the opposing team narrowly missed stopping a last second goal that would have tied the score.

“Great sportsmanship there, buddy.” Casey's voice echoed in Simon's headset as the game shifted back to the lobby screen.

“It's not like I told them to get cancer or something. It's part of the game.” Simon said indignantly.

“Whatever you say, man. I just thought that someone that's high all the time would be a little more mellow in the way he plays.”

“I'm not high all the time,” Simon shot back, “just whenever I'm stressed out, having trouble sleeping, and every Saturday night. Oh, and when I want to watch a really trippy movie. It's pretty much required then.”

“Can't argue with that. You're practically sober,” Casey chortled. “I don't care what you do as long as you're awake in time to hit the fair tomorrow. You know it's sweater weather and there's going to be some real cuties there. I don't want to miss my chance to find a Mrs. James because I couldn't get you out of bed.”

Simon harrumphed. He needed a best friend more supportive of his extra-curricular activities. He had plenty of friends that he smoked with and considering Casey's penchant for giving him shit about it, they all seemed like better choices. What made it worse was the entire reason for Casey's antipathy towards marijuana was that he did not smoke, thus logically it was a stupid activity.

Simon's increased irritation with his friend was a good sign that his buzz was wearing off. This was not how the evening was supposed to go. His little habit was supposed to help him forget about the fact that he was in his twenties and could not grow hair in more than little patches atop his head, or that he was of average height at best and certainly far shorter than most of his friends, or at the very least that his job was far more stressful than it needed to be. Would it kill the world to give him his one night a week that he could truly unwind?

“Simon, are you still there?” Casey broke up the self-pity party.

“Yeah, I'm still here, and don't worry about tomorrow. You damn well know that I'm not that kind of friend.”

“I know, but I still like to give you shit. Want to go another round?”

“Yeah, I have a few more in me, but not until I take one more trip down the Ganges.” Simon smirked and lit up, inhaling the stress-reducing smoke before queuing up for another game.

* * *

Another grey sky morning met Simon as they stepped out of Casey's late 90s model Range Rover and into the gravel parking lot outside the fairgrounds. The air still had that Northern chill—the kind of crisp air that would snap the senses awake and just cold enough to make Simon want to retreat further into his black hoodie. Grey seemed an all-too-familiar color lately. It was the color of his eyes and the color of his overcast disposition as of late. Sunday mornings were for sleeping in, not for spending the day hitting on out-of-town college girls. He was not opposed to girls, of course, but he just thought he had very little to offer them with his short stature and bald head that he kept hidden underneath the hood of his sweatshirt.

Casey slapped him on the back.

“Cheer up! We have a big day ahead of us. Just think about all the cuties that are going to be here.” Simon's taller friend smirked. “I'll even give you the chance now to call dibs. Who do you want first crack at—blondes, brunettes, maybe a redhead?”

“I want to go back to bed. The fair is going to be here all day long. Couldn't we come later in the afternoon?” Simon pleaded. “There's hardly anybody here yet.”

Casey gave Simon an incredulous stare.

“Do I really need to explain this again? We get first pick if we're the first ones here. Besides, how many girls are going to feel like being hit on after they're all bloated from stuffing funnel cake in their mouths?”

Simon slumped, mentally defeated. There was no arguing with Casey. His logic was so baffling at times that it defied argument. Then again, it was easy being Casey. He had everything going for him that Simon did not. He was tall with a sort of athletic look about him and had a thick mane of dark scraggly hair. Most of all, he was confident. Confidence was the one thing that Simon lacked above all else. He might have been a little frail, but there were other men that could take what he had and get a lot more out of it than he did. There was no Napoleon complex here. Simon felt about as big as he looked.

The morning hours went about as good as could be expected. Simon followed Casey around the fairgrounds like a zombie. The rides seemed even more of a blur than they normally were. Simon was barely coherent on the tilt-a-whirl, nearly sliding off his seat onto the floor more than once. He nearly fell asleep on the Ferris wheel, especially when they were stopped at the top to let on another pair of passengers. By the time they reached the bumper cars and Casey had yet to hit on a single girl, he was ready to go home. It was just his luck then that there was a fairly cute redhead in a purple skirt waiting in line and watching them as they stepped into their respective cars. 

From the start, Simon's plan was to keep moving. If he drove around the floor like it was a race track, it would be fairly difficult for someone to pin him down. Not long into their time, however, Simon noticed that Casey was getting rather competitive, crashing into any other adult male riding the track at full speed, doing his best to emasculate them. That's when he saw the redhead waving to someone on the floor. Seconds later Casey's car had t-boned him right into the wall and as he jostled about his friend backed up and then smashed into him several more times. The grogginess that had held him prisoner all morning faded away with each crash of rubber and metal. When the buzzer finally sounded, he was left frustrated and ready to get in a fight.

“What's your problem?!” Simon shouted at his would-be friend.

“Huh? Oh, sorry, no hard feelings man.” Casey seemed a bit distracted, scanning the crowd as they made their way to the exit. “Didn't you see that girl? She was totally waving at—”

Casey spied the attractive redhead leaving arm in arm with another guy. 

“I don't care what she was doing. You don't have to act like a complete dick.”

“Yeah, you're right. Shit, I'm sorry. You know I get a little competitive when there are cute girls around.”

“Whatever, can we go now?” Simon asked, ready for the day to come to an end.

“Go? The day is still young. The morning may have been a failure, but we still have all afternoon and evening to find the girls of our dreams.” Casey slapped his hand on Simon's back. “Let's get some caffeine in you and I bet you'll be right as rain.”

* * *

The pretzel was soft and doughy with the perfect amount of salt, exactly the way a soft pretzel should be, and when combined with a large Dr. Pepper it was the perfect treat to calm Simon's nerves. Sure, he could have complained that there was more ice than necessary in the soft drink and that he had to scrape some of the salt off the pretzel before it was how he liked it, but considering his demeanor up to that point, it was a blessing to have something relax him at all. On top of that, the sun had peaked around the clouds and the morning chill was a thing of the past. The best thing he could do was pretend that he had slept through those early morning hours (which had been his plan from the start) and focus on the rest of the day. With the caffeine from the soda performing its magic, he was ready for some carnival games. Perhaps he would win a plush toy and he could give it to a cute girl. Something like that would be far more impressive than Casey acting like an overly aggressive, egotistical jerk wad. Simon grinned as he imagined showing up his friend.

As Simon sat at a picnic table near the food stands contemplating his friend's demise, Casey was scoping out his next target. The cutest girl he had seen all morning was snatched out from under him by her boyfriend—such a waste when he knew he was the truly awesome one. Since then, the choices had diminished greatly. The problem with the carnival was that there was far too much jailbait walking around. He knew better than to tempt fate, so he kept his eyes peeled for just the right girl. He was sure there would be some girls walking around with their college emblazoned across their chests. He just had to be patient, or in the absence of patience, find a more suitable place to look. Stalking the food stands went against his rule about not watching a girl eat. Nobody looked attractive with barbecued pig juices running down their chin, not even a hot girl. It was time to move.

“Hey, how about we go play some—” Both of the friends started at once, stopping once they realized they had the same idea.

“Good to see you're feeling like yourself again,” Casey complimented his friend.

“Yeah, well, it was just a matter of time, but I wouldn't have felt like crap in the first place if you'd let me sleep in.”

“Do you know how many proverbs there are about not sleeping in? Nobody ever got anywhere in life by sleeping til noon every day.”

“I do not sleep that late every day.” Simon rolled his eyes. “It's a freaking Sunday. This day was invented solely for sleeping in. Forget about that, though. How much do you want to bet that I walk away with more prizes than you?”

“It depends, do girls count as prizes too? Because if they do, you don't stand a chance.”

The pair shared a laugh as they walked to the other side of the fairgrounds. They both knew that most of the games were rigged, but that did not make them any less fun and even the rigged games were not impossible to win at, just improbable. The first game involved rolling golf balls into a series of holes to make a cardboard cutout horse go faster. Casey took an early lead and probably could have won if he had not kept looking away to find a prize more to his liking. In the end, a little girl half their age won the game with Simon coming in second and Casey in third. Neither of the guys felt particularly bad about losing.

Duck shooting was next on the agenda. Simon took aim and flattened several of the ducks. While shooting for real and shooting in a video game were not even close to the same thing, it at least taught him to adjust his aim properly. He was sure he was going to walk away with one of the big plush creatures on the side wall with the way he was shooting. It would be his finest hour of the day and there was not a person in the world that did not need a giant green and fuzzy octopus. He took aim at the last duck he needed to go home with the cephalopod when he felt Casey tugging on his shirt. It pulled him and his aim off to the point that the attendant ended up with a piece of cork plugging him in the leg. Simon could feel the man's glare and did not want to get into a fight with a carny, so he politely stood up to see what his friend wanted.

“What is it, Casey? I was just about to win Mr. Tentacles.”


A pair of the most lovely girls Simon had ever seen stood watching people at the strongman game. The pair had gorgeous long blonde hair that flowed like a waterfall down their slender backs in waves. They wore matching summery dresses, one in purple and the other in blue that accented their supple breasts, a feature that Simon was having trouble keeping his eyes off. They giggled and pointed as each guy walked up to the plunger and swung the mallet down, sending the puck up and just nearly missing the bell at the top, not that the bald man was particularly attentive of this detail. He was more focused on the way they smiled and the way their bodies moved. The pair were entrancing to say the least.

“Come on, one for me, one for you. You can even have first pick, though I'm totally going for the one in the violet.” Casey said with a smirk. “The way her neckline plunges... gah damn, that's hot!”

Simon was easily convinced. It was not often he saw a woman so attractive that he got such a surge of confidence, but he could imagine himself snuggled up against the girl in blue already. Before he knew it he was standing in line not too far away from the pair. They were even more visionary up close. He must have been daydreaming because he could not place how he had gotten this close to the girls.

“I'm going to go break the ice, use my charm and what not and then I'll wave you over.” Casey whispered into Simon's ear.

Simon nodded. It would not do him any good if he made a complete ass out of himself by trying to introduce himself to the girls. It was best to let Casey use his strengths and then once he had his in, he could wow the girl in blue with his intelligence. The best way to impress was to utilize his strengths after all.

“Step right up! Test your strength! Who are the men out of the boys?” The barker called out.

Simon kept his eyes on Casey as he turned on the charm. He was so natural over there, smiling at the two of them and lightly touching one on the shoulder. The girls were already laughing and seemed to be interested. He just had to wait for his cue. Just a little longer and then there it was. Casey motioned him over, waving him in for the landing. Simon took another step and then felt a push at his back. He stumbled forward and a little bit to the side.

“Looks like we have our next contestant! Step right up!” The barker shouted dangerously close to Simon's ear.

Simon looked up at the man dumbfounded.

“No, no, I just tripped. I think it would be better if somebody else...”

The crowd started to boo and Simon scanned Casey's face for help. His friend just shrugged as people egged him on.

“Don't be a pussy!” A young male voice shouted out, probably belonging to some middle school student.

Simon sighed as he was handed the hammer, the big red mallet mocking him. He stared up to the top of the tower up where the bell was. He had yet to hear it ring, but he figured he could at least manage to not embarrass himself. If he just swung it as hard as he could, what could go wrong? Resigned to his fate, Simon squared himself up and got ready to swing.

* * *

Casey's charm with the opposite sex was not something he worked on. They just seemed to warm right up to him. Yes, it helped that he was in good shape. If he had applied himself better in high school he might have had a chance at being a professional athlete, but he also had the intangible qualities that women looked for in a mate. Despite the perverted way he talked with his friends and his tendency to be a bit competitive, when he talked to women he was a completely different person. Simon usually just called him fake, but he did not hear his friend complaining now that he was opening the door to one half of a stunning pair of twins.

“Trust me girls, you'll love Simon. We've been friends for a long time and believe me when I say he is one of the most honest and loyal guys that I know.” Casey said without a hint of sarcasm. “If he was a woman, I'd probably date him. That's just how awesome he is.”

“Oh really?” The girl in the purple dress chortled. “He doesn't look like much. He's not even that much bigger than I am.”

“I can see it. He has this sort of cute, stray puppy dog appeal to him.” The one in the blue said with a smile. Casey had not bothered to ask their names.

“You always do go for the fixer uppers, don't you sis?” 

“What can I say? I like guys with untapped potential.”

“Simon is full of untapped potential. Hell, he's a great guy right now.” Casey smiled as the pairings worked out just the way he hoped. “Let me get him over here and then we can go find a place to sit and get to know each other.”

Casey waved Simon over, but somehow his bald friend tripped his way right into the strongman game. Casey could not help but laugh a little. Was Simon trying to make his own impression? He suspected otherwise when Simon looked at him for help. Too late now, Casey thought, giving his friend a shrug of his shoulders, but if Simon could ring the bell it would go a long way to showing off some of that untapped potential.

“No way he makes it.”

“Probably not, but it's cute that he wants to try, don't you think?” The blue-dress girl asked her sister.

“She's right on this one. No way he hits that bell, not when his idea of exercise is smoking pot and all-night gaming sessions.” Casey responded offhandedly.

“Oh, does he smoke?” One of the girls responded.

Was that disappointment he heard in her voice? Casey turned his attention away from his friend's test of strength, not wanting to blow it for Simon before they even had a chance to meet him. The prospect of having twins all to himself was an interesting one, but Simon needed this. This whole day was partially planned in hopes that Simon would have a good time. He could have picked up girls anywhere on his own after all.

“Oh, um... just a little, it's not like he does it all the time or...”

The smack of the mallet on the lever cracked and then the onlookers jeered and laughed. Simon's swing had barely made it half way up the tower, not that Casey saw even one bit of it. The sound of the hecklers was the only thing that made him turn around.

“Wimp! Loser! My 8-year old is stronger than that!” People were brutal.

Casey caught a glimpse of Simon's hooded frame running off in the other direction.

“Oh shit, Simon! Wait!” Casey called out over the crowd. “Sorry girls, but it looks like I'm needed elsewhere.”

He looked at the twins apologetically and then turned to bolt off after his forlorn pal. The tug on his shirt pulled him right back in the other direction before he could gain even a little traction. The girl in blue had a small little plastic bag filled with some kind of green herb and a number written on it. She smiled up at Casey as her twin looked at her disapprovingly.

“Here, give this to him. It will make everything better.”

Casey nodded and stuffed the bag in his pocket quickly. He apparently had misjudged her before if he was right about what she just gave him. He had seen Simon smoke often enough to know what it looked like. It was a bit difficult to believe that the girl was a pothead though. Maybe it was tea. At least they had their number, so the day was not going to end in a total loss. Casey pushed his way through the crowd and hopped a chain on his way after his friend.

* * *

Simon stared at the wooden, hirsute face of Zoltar. The caricature of a middle eastern man seemed vaguely racist the longer he examined it, but it was not the unfortunate appearance that he was most interested in. It was the sign below the bust that read Zoltar says make your wish. The machine was remarkably similar to the one made infamous by Tom Hanks, but there was a big difference. That machine actually worked. This one was a piece of junk, or so Simon thought as he kicked the side of the machine repeatedly. He hurt his foot more than he dented the machine, but that was not quite a concern at the moment.

“You piece of crap machine! One simple wish, that's all I want!”

Simon kicked the case a few more times for good measure.

“Please tell me you were not wishing to be big...” Casey interrupted his follicularly-challenged compatriot.

“So what if I was? I don't have a muscle on my body! Look at me! I'm pathetic!” Simon raged at his friend like a four-year old throwing a temper tantrum.

“Dude, you are just fine the way you are. One of those girls was totally into you.”

“You expect me to believe that? I'm not one of your gullible bimbos that falls for that fake charm of yours. There's no way you're telling the truth.”

Simon pushed at the machine again, though the object of his wrath was not where his anger was directed at the moment. Coin-operated game abuse was much better than getting into a fist fight with Casey though.

“Come on, don't take it out on the machine. It never did anything to you.”

“It ate my quarter and I didn't even get to make a wish!” Simon shouted back again. 

“That's probably because it's not even plugged in. Where would you ever get the idea that it would work in that condition?” Casey motioned to the plug that was glaringly loose from the extension cord it had once been plugged into. “This isn't a movie.”

“Great, now I'm a weakling and an idiot.”

“No, you're just frustrated. I haven't exactly made this the easiest day on you, but I just wanted to get you out of the apartment. I thought it would relax you.”

“You know what relaxes me.” Simon responded flatly to Casey's half-assed apology.

Casey patted his thigh, remembering the herb the girls had given him. It might not have been 4:20, but there was no better time to see if his friend wanted to light up than now. He held up the bag, dangling it in front of Simon's eyes and giving him a pathetic smile.

“You've got to be kidding me.” Simon blurted out. “Have you been holding out on me? I thought you didn't smoke.”

“I don't. One of those girls gave it to me, or well, it was supposed to be for you. I told you she was into you—even left her number on the bag.” 

“This is a cruel joke if it is one, Casey.”

“I'm not a complete jerk.” Casey said with a sigh. “Now, are you going to take it or not?”

Simon snatched the bag out of Casey's hand and opened the bag to make sure it was the genuine article. One sniff and he was sure. The aroma filled his nostrils and brought back memories of every time he had ever smoked. His ire lowered immediately.

“Where should we go with this?” Simon looked around. “County fairs with tons of parents and kids around are not exactly the places to light one up.”

“I don't care where you do it, as long as it's not in my car. I don't want that smell in there.” Casey shot back. “How about the Ferris wheel? You could smoke a joint or whatever by the time we go around the wheel, right?”

“Yeah, but, that car is going to reek as soon as we get out of it.”

“Eh, so we get kicked out of the fair. We met some cute girls. Mission accomplished.” Casey smiled. “Anything to help out a friend.”

* * *

Little boxes slowly ascended to the heavens, following the circular path around the Ferris wheel. Each one was painted red with a large window that provided a view for miles. Simon and Casey sat in one of these little boxes. Simon was quickly hand-rolling his joint on the bench between the two of them. It was best to keep things out of view until it was too late to stop them. His hands were jittery, worrying about being caught, but the reward that awaited him was too good to pass up. Casey kept his eyes focused on the side of the window, near the door where the two entered the car.

“All's clear. Light 'er up.”

The shiny silver lighter flicked on, burning the end of the thin paper. A thin wisp of smoke rose up to the ceiling and sort of just hung there in the air. There was no real ventilation in the tiny booth that probably could have only fit one more person.

“You know that you might get a contact high from the smoke, right Casey?” Simon asked, though with the little hand-rolled cigarette already lit, he was not going to just put it out.

“Yeah, whatever. I'm not like I'm straight edge or something. I'll be fine.”

Simon took a long drag and held the smoke in his mouth for a few moments before releasing it. The haze in the car became a bit thicker and Casey took in a little with each breath. He focused on keeping an eye out the window, thinking that keeping his mind occupied would somehow distract him from any ill effects. Simon sighed contently. This was not a strain he had ever tried before, but whatever it was, it was good. His worries and the memories of the stressful day floated right away and popped like tiny bubbles.

“We so need to call those girls and thank them for this. You have no idea.” Simon muttered, slumping back in his seat and taking another puff.

“I have to give it this. It smells better than the stuff you usually smoke. There's almost like an undertone of strawberry or raspberry or—hell, I don't know—some kind of berry.” Casey shuddered at his levelheadedness. “Strangely intoxicating...”

Simon laughed. He laughed so hard that he could not help giggling like a little girl. The idea that his downer of a friend might get even a little high from this stuff was seriously amusing to him. He held out the joint with a mischievous grin.

“You're always welcome to a little. Come to the dark side. Have a sandwich, Casey!”

Casey shook his head and pushed it right back over to Simon. The cab was already filled with enough smoke as it was without him inhaling directly. The haze just hung from the ceiling in little wisps that pulled themselves right down into Casey's lungs with every breath. Fortunately for Simon and perhaps unfortunately for Casey, the ride went on without a hitch. There was some worry that when they came back around to the bottom of the wheel the first time that the operator would stop the ride and pull them out, but they did their full three revolutions around the wheel. It was fifteen minutes of pure relaxation for the formerly stressed bald man.

Their car came to a stop and the door opened wide, smoke and the unmistakable smell of the herb flowing out. The wheel operator stared at the two friends, though before he could say a thing, Casey stopped him

“Don't worry, we're leaving. Have a nice day.” He laughed a little.

As they stumbled their way towards the parking lot, Simon squeezed his taller friend tight around the waist like a child hugging a parent.

“You're a good friend, Casey, even if you are a complete dick at times.” Simon practically giggled again.

* * *

Monday morning came too soon. Monday morning meant it was back to long hours and little pay from a job that Simon did not quite fancy. Monday morning was here and that damned alarm clock just would not shut up. Five more minutes, that was all he wanted. Simon balled up a fist and slammed down on the snooze button. The plastic shattered as the alarm clock caved in from the force of Simon's fist. His night stand creaked and shuddered, leaving a nice long crack in the surface, but somehow managed to stay together. 

Simon rolled over and pulled the covers back over his head. The screeching alarm was silenced and he was too tired to notice little details like exploding alarm clocks. His feet were now exposed as the blanket hid him from the sun. He groaned and flailed at the covers, trying to get his feet back under them. The bed creaked as he moved and his feet were still not covered. They hung right over the edge of his full sized bed even. The struggle with his sheets was doing very little to get him the five extra minutes he hoped for, and the more alert he felt the more he realized that his body felt weird and lumpy and quite heavy in some spots. Something was tickling at his forehead and into his eyes. He writhed as he became more and more uncomfortable. He slowly came to notice other things. His shirt felt extremely tight, as did his pajama pants, which now seemed to only reach the middle of his calves. He growled, panting in frustration and flung the covers away from his body, sitting up with a start.

His chest jiggled as it bounced into place. He felt the color draining from his face as a sick realization crept over him. The body he was staring at was not his own. In fact, his would be the entirely wrong word for what was staring him in the face. That weight on his chest was the one thing no man among men would ever want to see on their chest. A heavy pair of perfectly shaped breasts filled his vision, a pair quite a few sizes larger than Simon had seen before on a woman. His nipples now seemed to point forward in that all-too-feminine way, poking right through the now thin fabric of his shirt. The massive glands were a lot to take in, and they would have been enough to make a grown man cry, especially on someone of Simon's usual size, but then Simon was not his usual size.

The rest of his body was Amazonian in nature and even that was underselling it. Breasts of such an unusual size would have looked out-of-place on any other body, but on this one they fit perfectly. Well-toned muscles bulged from his arms and shapely legs with every twitch of his body. Despite the tone, it was a body that still screamed femininity. Every inch had that smooth sort of look about it that made a woman's skin so appealing to touch. The hips were nice and wide and there was enough carriage in the back to balance out the weight of his chest. As tight as this now made his pajama pants, there was no need to check to see if everything was in place below the belt. He would have felt his manhood struggling to escape such a tight prison. It was difficult to fathom just how tall he was now too. His bed was at least six feet in length and his height eclipsed that by at least half a foot, probably more.

Somehow his hands and feet were both slender and strong at the same time. One could easily call them cute, just cute on a different scale. A quick tug at the top of his scalp confirmed the now luscious head of hair he sported. Far too stunned to quite grasp the gravity of his change, he raced to the mirror in his bathroom. It had been so long since he had a full head of hair, he could not imagine what it looked like.

Bright crimson locks framed his now feminine face. There was a little more green in his eyes than before, which gave them quite the exotic look. He batted his eyes and squeezed as his cheeks, pinching them to make sure everything was real. With a quick pull, his shirt was lifted up over the mammoth-sized mammaries and realization struck like lightning. He, or rather she, was a girl head-to-toe and quite a strong and sexy one too. She could have played She-Hulk on screen with a little help from a makeup department if she wanted to, and considering that there was not even a hint of her male self left in her body, she was completely boned.

How was she going to go to work looking like this? If she could not work, she could not pay her bills. She was going to be out of house and home. None of her friends would recognize her. She would be all alone. Panic-filled thoughts flooded her brain as she gripped the sides of her bathroom sink. Her knuckles turned white as she squeezed the ceramic until she felt it start to give way. How strong was she? She backed away from the sink in horror, looking at her hands, not able to believe a thing that was happening to her. 

The intense weight of the situation felled her like she was the giant that Jack slayed. She collapsed to her knees and then back onto her soft hindquarters, burying her head between her knees as she tried to make sense of it all.

“What the hell is going on?” She whimpered in a now sultry alto.

Divine retribution for some misdeed seemed the unlikely answer, but then what was the answer? She thought back to the previous day. This was nearly what she had planned to wish for from the Zoltar machine, but she never got to make that wish and she certainly did not have any plans on wishing to be female on top of being big and strong. What else could it have been? She smoked pot all the time, so the notion that it had been that did not make sense. No, wait, where did that pot come from again? Some girls gave it to Casey and it had that fruity scent to it. This just had to be Casey's fault.

* * *

“Casey! Open the door right now!”

Simon pounded on her friend's apartment door, knowing that she could just rip it of its hinges now if she chose. It was not the ideal outfit, due to her new found height, but she managed to find a pair of track pants, a jacket, and a tank top that she could squeeze into. She had to make sure everything she wore was of a stretchy material, or else she would have ripped right through them when she put them on. The tight fit meant that her navel was exposed and she couldn't find a pair of shoes to fit her now colossal feet, but it was better than wandering around naked. She needed something to wear after all when she tore Casey's head off.

Somehow on the way over she had convinced herself that her new gender was entirely the fault of one person. Casey dragged her to that carnival in the first place. He was the one that flirted with those twins and got some weird strain of marijuana without knowing the first thing about weed. She could not believe that she had actually thanked him and called him a good friend after all that he had put her through. She wanted to put her fist right through his door.

“If you don't open up, I'm going to rip the door off!” She shouted.

A moment later the door opened just slightly. The lights were all off inside, but Simon could see her friend peeking right around the corner of the door wearing a big fluffy robe. Without hesitation, Simon pushed the door open, sending Casey falling back onto his backside. The man grunted slightly as Simon grabbed him by the robe and lifted him up, nearly above her head. She shoved him against the wall violently and growled at him. Casey turned his head to the side, keeping quiet, not wanting to look the giant woman in the eyes.

“I can't believe I trusted you. I'm a freaking woman because of you and you don't have a thing to say about it? Will you just look at me?!” Simon scolded her friend.

Casey said nothing as Simon pushed him against the wall a bit harder. Simon was a bull 
seeing nothing but red, more than ready to kill her friend until his robe unfurled and Simon's cheeks turned crimson in embarrassment. While it should have been no surprise, considering what she had gone through herself that morning, she was not prepared to find a pair of small little breasts staring her in the face. Casey's body was in the same condition hers was. No, that was a lie, Casey's was much more what the average woman would have than her own.

To call her now female friend's bust modest was being kind. She did share the toned look that Simon herself had, but Casey's body was shaped more like an Olympic athlete. She was not the Amazon that Simon had become. Her now thin waist tapered out into a nice pair of hips and then into stunning legs—the kind a super model might possess. Simon held her friend up for a moment longer, staring between those legs at the emasculating feminine slit and the triangle of fine brown hair that rested on the mound right above it. Simon sputtered, at a loss for words, and put her friend down, allowing the girl to cover up.

Casey was much shorter than she was, and she was pretty sure she was now shorter than she had been as a male. She was still rather tall for a woman though, maybe just a hair shy of six foot. Her blue eyes and brown hair were the same, but her face seemed so tiny as she tried to hide it.

“Oh, shit, you too?” Simon asked, though it was a rather foolish question.

Casey was taking it far harder than Simon had. There was a look in her eyes that made her think the girl was on the verge of tears. An instinct kicked in and told Simon to embrace her, something the friends were not in the habit of doing other than when they were drunk or stoned. Simon's strong arms encircled Casey and held her tight. Casey sniffled.

“How am I going to hit on girls when I am one?” She asked pathetically. 

A smile crept onto Simon's lips. Flirting with women was the biggest thing that Casey was worried about? It was so typical Casey that she started to giggle. She gave Casey a playful little shove and the girl stumbled back onto her butt.

“Oops, still getting used to my new strength.” She said with that same smile.

Now Casey was smiling too and started to laugh. The whole situation was absurd. Maybe they were in a bit of denial, but the fact that they were in this together seemed to make the whole thing a little bit more manageable. The two of them laughed for some time, sitting next to each other on the floor of Casey's apartment until they were worn out.

“You see why I don't smoke pot now, right?”

“Oh yes, there was always the distinct possibility that smoking would turn you into a woman. Good thing you avoided that, hmm?” Simon chuckled.

“Yeah, though I don't get why you're all big and strong and rather stacked while I look like some bean pole that barely made it through puberty.”

“Are you jealous? Trust me, you don't want to be as big as me.”

“I don't want to be a girl at all, but it looks like I am one. I can't believe those girls would poison us like this. I swear, if I ever see them again, I'm going to give them more than a piece of my mind.” Casey growled.

A light bulb turned on in Simon's head. She turned to Casey and looked at her with surprisingly wide eyes and a big grin on her lips.

“Please tell me you still have that bag!”

“What? You want to smoke more of that shit after it did this to us?”

“No, you idiot! The girls' number was on that. I don't know if they're witches or what, but if they did this to us, they can undo it.” Simon said excitedly.

“Oh, yeah. That's what I was thinking too. I was just testing you.”

Casey stood up and disappeared back into her bedroom. A few moments passed before she returned with her cell phone and the little plastic baggie in her hand. She sat back down next to Simon and handed her the phone and the baggie. Simon dialed the number and waited. Nobody answered, but there was still hope.

“It's going to voice mail. What should I say?”

“Here, let me.” Casey snagged her phone back from her much taller friend and waited for the beep. “Okay, listen up bitches! I don't know what was in that shit weed you gave us, but we never asked to be women, so you better turn us back! We'll be waiting for you at the strongman game at the fairgrounds.”

Casey hung up the phone and then looked over to her friend who did not look amused.

“Casey, if you fuck this up, I'm going to shove you kicking and screaming into the frilliest dress I can find.”

“Chill out, bro. I know exactly what I'm doing!”

* * *

Casey fussed with her waistband, trying to keep her jeans from falling past her posterior. While all of Simon's clothes were now too tight for her, all of Casey's were too loose. If they had been smarter they would have swapped clothing to make sure they both ended up with something that fit better, but their lack of the proper genitalia ruled out reasoning. It however made them quite the pair to behold—one a gorgeous redhead of giant proportions wearing clothes far too small for her, the other a nervous girl with a sort of tomboyish look that was having trouble keeping her clothes on. They both elicited their share of stares.

The fair was not nearly as crowded as the previous day. There was still a small smattering of college students that were on their break, but it was more heavily dominated by parents with small children. The children seemed to be quite entranced by Simon's appearance as well. More than a few times one would escape from its mother and run up to the tall girl, looking up at her as if they were seeing a giraffe for the first time. The childhood wonder in their eyes made Simon smile every single time. 

Her sour mood from the previous day seemed to have transferred itself to Casey, who was not the least bit amused when she was the subject of male lust on more than one occasion.

“Dry up and die!” She shouted after a young man that dared ask for her number.

“You sure are grumpy for someone that knows exactly what she's doing.” Simon teased, standing near the chain barrier that kept the crowd back from the strongman game.

“Yeah, well, I don't have this whole intimidation thing you have going on! Guys just admire you from afar. They think I'm like actually a real girl or some shit!”

“From what I've seen, that's a pretty apt description of you.” Simon said with a smirk. “Don't worry, I'm sure those girls will be here soon and then you can go back your usual charming self.”

“Yeah, well they better hurry.”

Casey tugged at her pants again and grumbled when they slipped right back down. Simon chuckled, but there was another thought that kept creeping back into her mind. Here they were, standing next to the source of her embarrassment. The last time she tried the game she was a laughing stock. There was no telling what she could do to it now. Her chance to see just how strong she was stared her in the face. She was not sure why, but the fact that she was female did not really bother her all that much. The thought of being so big and strong, exactly what she always wanted to be overwhelmed her fears. She could have been strong enough to be a super hero for all she knew. It was a possibility that made her giddy. She gave Casey an apologetic glance.

“Um... I'm going to...” She could not quite get the words out.

Casey glared at her and sighed when she saw what Simon was focused on.

“Do whatever you want. I'll just stand here and get hit on twenty more times while you go HULK SMASH on the thing.”

“I'll be right back, really I will.” 

Simon smiled, gave her friend a quick hug and then stepped over the chain without a problem, nearly sprinting to the barker that was not as into the job without a large crowd to manipulate. He looked up from his cup of coffee and then swallowed in one hard gulp.

“Wow, you're a tall drink of water, aren't you? Here to prove that you're a woman among men? That will be two dollars.”

Simon forked over the cash and picked up the hammer with glee. She could now wield the red rubber mallet like it was Mjolnir and she was the Mighty Thor. She licked her lips in anticipation and then crashed the hammer down with all her might on the lever. The puck flew up the tower and smacked into the bell with such force that it flew right off. DING! The barker stared at Simon, confounded as to how any person, let alone a woman could be that strong. He never did see the puck or the bell land after all.

“We have a winner.” He muttered, looking a bit too afraid not to hand Simon a giant plush octopus, or to demand that she pay for the damages to the game. 

Simon bounced up and down and hugged the plush toy to her ample chest, though most of her elation was in seeing that she was Power Girl. She could probably lift an elephant if she wanted. She skipped back over to Casey as the barker closed up shop.

“Did you see? Did you see?”

Casey did not answer. She was just staring at a piece of paper in her hand. Simone pouted at the fact that her friend did not congratulate her on her victory and snatched the piece of paper away to read for herself.

To whom it may concern:

We never got your names, but we are sorry that we could not be there today. There are important matters that we must attend to that eclipse your journey into femininity. We have your number and will be in contact with you at our earliest convenience. All will be explained. In the meantime, we suggest enjoying the rare gift that you have been given. Being a woman is a strange and wonderful journey, one that we hope the both of you will appreciate with time. 

Enjoy your new bodies,
The Girls.

Simon placed her hand on Casey's shoulder and gave it a comforting squeeze. There was no telling how long they would be stuck this way, but she knew that together they could get through it. The possibilities open to her now were endless and she intended to enjoy every moment of them.

“It won't be so bad, Casey. They said that they would get back to us.” Simon tried to reason with the girl. “We can move in together and it will be a lot easier. You'll see.”

“Cram it, Simone!” Casey spit out.

“Simone? Oh, I kind of like that.” She thought aloud. “You can be... Casey. Oh crap, doesn't work with you. Guess we'll just have to come up with a cuter way to spell your name.”

Simone ruffled Casey's hair much to the shorter girl's dismay and let out a giggle.

“How did I get stuck with such a bimbo for a best friend?” Casey asked.

“You're just lucky I guess.” Simone answered, putting an arm around her friend as they started to make their way back to the parking lot and into their new lives. “Say, you want to go back to my place and get high? It really calms the nerves!”

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