Данный рассказик родился как комментарий на
вот это произведение.
Оттуда же было украдено первое предложение.
She was a wolf, a crane, a snake, all at once. And a teapot. Yes, positively a teapot.
“This is so freaky,” said Beth. She, too, was staring at the thing that used to be – that probably still was – Lisa with wide eyes, full of horror and excitement.
I hate the word “freaky.” I absolutely loathe it. I’ve got a little sister, Mary Ann, who says “freaky” a lot, like in every sentence. In her language, “freaky” can stand for almost anything: beautiful, scary, boring, strange, whatever. She eats a freaky cereal every morning and takes a freaky bus to her freaky school, where her freaky friends freak her out. When she says “freaky,” I want to strangle her.
But to be honest, the thing before me was freaky.
I did not know Lisa was a shapeshifter. I mean, like everyone else, I did notice her changing a lot from day to day. She changed her hairstyles more often than I change socks and the color of her eyes was going from green to blue to brown so frequently, that I wondered if she always had several packs of contact lenses in her handbag. And then there were her breasts, of course, which inflated and deflated depending of the day of the week. Strangely enough, I did not find that odd. Her dad was a plastic surgeon, after all. The stuff they can do these days is amazing.
“We can leave her here,” suggested Beth.
“No, we can’t,” I said and immediately pondered why. She wasn’t my girlfriend, in fact. She wasn’t anyone’s girlfriend, as far as I knew. I said “hi” to her when I met her in the corridor, and I have exchanged a few words with her in class during group exercises, but meeting her at Tom’s party was pure coincidence. I saw her talking to Tom, then bumped into her on my way to toilet (she was walking rather unsteadily), then noticed her sitting in the corner, drinking something transparent from a champagne glass.
And now she was lying on the lawn in front of me, morphing into… a squirrel? A raccoon? A baseball bat? From the ajar door of Tom’s house behind me, I could still hear drunken laughter and some eighties crap.
“We are taking her home,” I said firmly. “Any idea where she lives?”
“Not far from here,” said Beth. “Five minutes, most. But how are you going to bring her home? She is so… unstable. What the hell is happening to her?”
“Well, I think she’s just pissed,” I opined (Lisa meanwhile turned into a cactus, whose needles immediately started to grow, making her look increasingly like a porcupine). “I guess she’s just lost control of herself. Hey, Lisa, what did you drink?”
The porcupine instantly shrunk and morphed into a bottle of Beefeater.
“Oh, God,” exclaimed Beth. “She must have finished a bottle of gin! No surprise she can’t hold her shape. She must be seeing flying pink elephants now.”
That was a very bad idea. The thing called Lisa quickly expanded again, turning into something big, pink, and with a trunk. I think I saw some tiny dragonfly wings, too.
“Shut up, Beth, you are confusing her! Lisa, would you be so kind and turn into something, eh, smaller? Say, a football?”
It turned out to be more of a balloon, actually, but the intention was certainly there. Good. Unfortunately, three seconds later the balloon became a pocket lamp, then a small green carpet, then a box of expensive Belgian chocolates. And it kept changing.
“Why don’t you carry her?” asked Beth. “It’s really not that far.”
“Are you mad?” I said. “What if she decides to become a steam train or a mountain?!” I hurriedly closed my mouth with the palm of my hand. Luckily for us, Lisa did not hear or ignored my words. “No, we are going to push her forward. Find a long strong stick. Two sticks.”
We ended up using a pair of rakes Beth found in a shed behind Tom’s house. Taking care not to hurt whatever Lisa was at each moment (An ultra-thin notebook computer? A pack of condoms? A small yellow bird in a cage? A mobile phone?), we pushed her across the lawn into the backyard and then over the fence (she was a fancy Gucci bag at the time, and I prayed the fall did not do her any damage). Crossing the street was the greatest challenge. At one point a police car was about to hit us, but Lisa unexpectedly transformed into a shiny roadworks sign, and the car turned around and drove away.
The last couple of minutes were the easiest. Lisa slowly changed from a nightgown into a book of teenage vampire stories, then into a pair of slippers and finally into a pillow. And remained a pillow.
“I think she is getting sleepy,” said Beth, and I sighed. I was right, Lisa simply lost control of herself. Talk about the dangers of alcohol.
Sneaking into Lisa’s house was easier than I thought. Her parents were probably sleeping already, as the lights were all off. I did not bother looking for her bedroom, of course, since it was quite certainly on the first floor, and the old wooden staircase even looked creaky. As I carefully lowered Lisa-pillow on the sofa in the living room, I wished her good night and, more importantly, a not-too-painful awakening. I could not imagine what her hangover was going to be.
* * *
When Lisa’s father entered the living room the next morning, his daughter was not there. There was, however, a strange large object on the sofa. Upon close examination, it turned out to be an oversized box of Alka-Seltzer. And the freakiest of all, it was snoring.