'The Wolf in Command'
Adum catches the message... something is happening. He smiles and says in a lovely female voice. "Yes, sir."
Jude Murphy and his entourage confer for a few minutes and then Jude is ready to go back to the brig and the Gati are ready to be shown their temporary quarters. None of them seem concerned.
In sixteen minutes, Adum is in front of the ready room door, entering, walking in and closing the door behind him. As he walks in and looks around, he secures the door behind himself. Then he spots the wolf. He stops and considers, moving forward slowly, as anyone would when approaching a strange animal who doesn't know them. This is a large animal and as he steps forward he takes his own measures to protect himself. Slowly his chest flattens and the womanly curves harden into a male shape. Within ten seconds, he is a sight to behold ... the female skin in a body as large as he could think of off the top of his head ... Jude Murphy's
She shuffles, moving back and forth, eyes on the Being in front of her. The scent is unknown. But mixed with it is a familiar one, one She knows, one that seems to say 'safe'. She knows this odd cave too, She has been here before, not often, but several times, always alone, and never able to leave.
The Other grows in size, standing before her in what She takes to be an aggressive posture, rising, spreading, like an ursus arctos She met once in a forest she has never seen again. The smell is strange though. Human, yet not Human, not Animal, her nostrils flare as She examines it. Male?
There is shining behind her, the sky is open, as the Other moves its paws toward her, She turns and tries to leap over a fence towards the light, but meets something that stops her, with a small yelp She tumbles to the floor, and tries again, and fails. She cannot see anything but a barrier is there, and She is not able to be free. She whirls, snapping, snarling, warning the Other not to approach.
The rocks in the cave around her are queerly shaped into squares, rectangles. She goes beneath one of them, into the underbrush that grows up not much higher than her head, stopped by a long stone. The legs of the Other are still seen. Her growl grows deeper.
She thrusts her nose out into the open, glaring to the Other, hackles raised, her yellowed eyes alert, snout lowered, muscles flexing, ready to defend, ready to attack. Her growl is ominously low.
Adum finishes his transformation and watches the wolf. He'd almost missed the uniform on the floor but had brought it with him. Now he tosses it onto the couch and continues to approach. "It's alright." he says in the voice they had taught him to use with those they wished to calm. "I'm not going to hurt you."
The wolf leaps for the window, but of course bounces off. An office is no place for a wolf. He doesn't know exactly what is going on, but he knows one thing ... his comfort around the Fleet Captain was due to a kindred spirit. So he sort of follows, on his knees at the animals own level, continuing to speak kindly.
"Wow ... an animal." he marvels, conversationally. "I can't do animals. Things either. So I'm really impressed." the wolf winds up under a desk, looking out growling as if completely unimpressed. "Maybe I'm too big. let me see .... Let me try Klingon bones .. they're strong .. but a smaller body...." he begins to shrink. "I know the Fleet Captain wouldn't hurt me, but you're no puppy." he shrinks his body now and reinforces the bones in it. "I think I could stand it if you got mad now." he muses. "I mean .. don't test me on that one. But I don't bleed like others like this. I think no real blood might be an advantage." he cants his head and rolls on his back, putting his arms and legs in the air as hes seen village dogs do to show submission. "See .... I'm harmless."
The Other makes noises. She growls again, long and low, the reverberation a heavy vibration that rings in the cave despite its soft coverings. She has many memories. Forests, hills, rivers, rabbits, howling at the silver orb in the sky, tongue lolling, eyes glinting. Danger, and the hunt. Those who smell sweetly pungent walked on two paws, and carried fire sticks that could maim or kill any one of the pack. This one had that smell but it was somehow different. She dances slightly, a shuffling movement that could mean restlessness, that could mean alarm, that could mean She readies to leap. She looks out the bushes to It. It makes more noises, but changes its posture, down closer to the ground, its scent morphing. Her eyes narrow, suspicious. The Other now rolls submissively to her. She sniffs, doubting It, staying under cover, eyes ever alert.
Adum stays on his back, neck craned to look under the desk. He's been attacked by dogs before. Not all farmers on Astra were kind, and when he had panhandled, even in a female form, he had often been sent away or worse, had dogs set on him. He'd had little choice but to run to a place where he could assume a stronger form to fend the dog off and he never tried to harm them. Now he wondered, how could he calm this canine down. It was his Fleet Captain ... he knew that. Another secret he could keep, but he would keep it, as she was a fellow shape-shifter as well as his commanding officer. Considering his options, he rolled back on all fours and reached under the desk, mostly trying to lure it out into the openness of the office floor. Why, he did not know. He expected that stress had triggered this change and so he assumed that calming her down might get her to return to her usual shape. Glancing at his arm, he realized the initial change to Murphy's shape had been too much for his uniform and it was rags. Choosing the smaller shape had helped a bit, but it was still a mess. It looked as if he had ... well ... been attacked by a dog.
She backed away as the Other came towards her, the odor of It filling her nostrils until she sneezed, moving until her tail was against the wood that fenced her in. There was a kind of a trail between the wood and the flat stone held up by small trees, she turned and followed it, going to the door which had opened to let her in, she snuffed at it but this time it did not move. Further there were some soft rocks. She jumped up on them, looking towards the Other, whining, inside it felt like something was squeezing her, twisting her vitals. She had no sense of past or future, but She had memory. Her paws sank into the rocks, there was some kind of covering on them that caught her nails, and it stank of the two legs, but also there was that scent She knew, that one that was not just familiar but.. like her. The light still glinted, but She ignored it, intelligent enough to know it lied, there was no space where there appeared to be space, also it looked huge to her, which was odd because She was used to seeing it hanging on trees and here it was, close, bright, silver. She glanced to it, and back to the Other. What would It do now? She growled again, warning It to stay away even as the pain inside increased.
Adum licked his lips as the wolf backed itself into a wall. That could make it more dangerous, not less. But then it moves to the door, which does not open, as he had secured it. Last thing anyone needed was a wolf running around the station. His guess was few had seen the Fleet Commander in this state, and he felt it his duty to keep it that way. Tackling her might subdue her, but it would also provoke a fight. He crawls on all fours to the middle of the ready room and sits prone; on his bottom, his legs straight out and spread. Dangerous position but ... he wanted to appear as non threatening as he could. He leans forward and pats the floor with his hands flat. "Come on, Fleet Captain." he calls to her as if she was the cutest little puppy he'd ever seen ... which she is not. But he makes his voice playful. "It's OK, I just want to pet you, is all." he tells her. He steals a glance at the replicator .. but he knows Toocool follows a strict non meat diet, yet he cannot imagine this animal eating flour. "It's alright, honest." he says and peeks around the office for anything the animal might want to play with. Nothing. The Fleet Captain had a few decorations in her ready room, but a disappointing lack of dog toys .....
She whined again, collapsing to the soft stone, panting heavily, shivers of pain traveling through her, She trembled. Looking towards It as it made sounds with its paws on the ground, as It barked to her in short notes that rose and fell. She snapped at It even though It was a few feet away. She growled even more fiercely lest the pain show as weakness. The cave echoed the sound of her gritty rattle. She would give It no advantage. It seemed like a young wolf, wanting to play, but It did not look or smell like any cub She had ever known. A streak of hot, sharp pain knifed through her. Her eyes morphed into golden orbs. Her legs elongated, trimmed with fur but curving into feet instead of paws. A strangled yelp escaped her.
Adum watches the canine. Even though it snapped, he wasn't convinced it could or even would follow up on the threat. It seemed half hearted. Schooching forward, using his butt and hands, he comes closer. Then the creatures eyes begin to glow and another change seems to begin. He moves ever closer .... in an attempt to touch one of the feet, ever so gently ....
The skin on her lips pulls up. Her ears are laid tight against her head. Her sharp teeth are revealed as She snarls to the Other. The paw he reaches to her is rejected. Twisting, she hurls herself at It, raging, looking for the jugular vein, front paws raking while her rear legs drag behind her, long and useless. Even as She reaches to rip Its neck open, She changes. In a moment, She is Poison Toocool, dropping with an 'oomph' on the chest of the other humanoid in the room, pain still racking her body, which is sheening with sweat, emitting a silver aura, and entirely nude.
Adum begins to change even as the wolf begins to hurl. Cardassian skin will have to do as he's never tried to be a Gati and has not yet considered the upsides to taking their form. She comes within a millimeter of closing teeth on his throat when she changes. Naked, she falls on top of him and he lays still, looking up at her. But he can only imagine what she is thinking as her eyes look a little lost and disconnected. That being said, he must look a mess. The skin is that of the Ensign he'd been in the meeting, but under that is the obvious Cardassian musculature .. especially the neck and neck and shoulder ridges. Overall his body is that of a medium sized human male. But his uniform is in tatters and even though she is completely naked, which he knew when he picked up her torn uniform, he looks like a shipwreck survivor .. he went from a small human female to a large male to a medium sized male and the uniform had not been able to take the adjustments. But he does not blush. Nudity doesn't embarrass him. But he knows she may be uncomfortable, so he tries to put her at ease. Using the voice she'd met him under .. that of a female, he smiles softly. "Ensign Adum Brate, reported as ordered, sir."
She slowly regains her conscious mind. A shudder runs through her, a familiar sensation that means she has returned from another form. Since she has no memory of it, she knows it was the She-Wolf. The pain begins to subside. Her humanoid senses return. The hum of the station surrounds her. Ready room? The smell is familiar, yes. But. There is a mix of bone, muscle and skin supporting her weight. The scent tells her immediately it is not Souleymane. She lifts her head and sees a chunky female face... Adum? "Eyes closed," she orders, rolling off, and crawling away until she is behind her desk, grabbing a scrap of torn uniform cloth as she goes. She sits on the carpet, back to the desk, on the opposite side to Adum. Her skin is flushed, her eyes gold-bright. Weakly: "Dismissed."