by Sly Squirrel
©2003 Sly Squirrel -- all rights reserved
Jane flopped down onto her couch, completely drained. Going to the Renegade Rabbit's autograph session was a tiring experience; on one hand she absolutely loved seeing a rabbit-man in the flesh, but on the other...
She screamed. That man was living her dream!
Strong acid dripped from her words, burning the air: "Why do some people have all the luck? They just happen to have enough money to pay for the treatment. They don't have to take a second mortgage to pay for Tank time."
The Renegade Rabbit was what she always wanted. She had the chance to shake his hand, pet his head, get an autograph. She had the chance to see that it was real, but she couldn't do it for herself. The goal was just out of reach.
Just like always.
Renegade's signature sat comfortably in her hand, mocking her. It was the only decoration in her otherwise drab apartment. The pen and notebook were her only friends, the only things she could find comfort in. And now she had to stare at her dream on the front cover of that infernal book.
She threw it out the window in disgust, along with the pen.
She flipped on the TV, sighing. Late night programming was never good, but at least it was better than laying around feeling worthless. A larger-than-life catwoman was standing behind a gaudy counter, her face smiling so hard that Jane thought her cleft lip would split right up the middle.
Another animal-person. Jane just wanted to curl up and die.
The catwoman spoke in golden tones. "Hey, you! Tired of your life? Tired of being the same old boring self? Tired of a ho-hum existence?"
Jane laughed. "Sister, you can't even begin to imagine --"
" Have I got news for you!" the catwoman said as she slinked her away across the stage to a large Tank. "Thanks to improvements in the Tanking process, transformation is cheaper than ever! Why, how much do you think it cost me to get the body I'm in right now?"
"Five hundred thousand," Jane said, giggling. "That's half price."
"What if I said fifteen hundred?"
The woman on the couch dropped the remote in shock.
"Yes! For little more than the cost of a used car, now you can have the body you've always dreamed of! Our correspondents will work to meet your personal needs, and present many options for your transformed body. We also have a catalog of standard alterations: gender switches, age regressions, slinky cats, dirty dogs, rowdy rabbits..."
Jane's heart beat at her chest.
"Interested? Then come take advantage of this one-time introductory price: five easy payments of two ninety nine, ninety nine! Call 555-TF-ME today, and get the body of your dreams tomorrow!"
Jane screamed with joy. She sifted through her couch to find a pen and paper to write the number down. Her search became more manic as time went on; the cushions flew across the room, the rollaway bed unfolded with a clang, and she started to sweat with nervous exertion. One pen! One piece of paper!
All the while, Renegade Rabbit's signature sat just outside the apartment building, a well-worn pen laying right beside it.