written and illustrated by Iron Eater
Warren lay sprawled on Brad’s couch, sipping a chilled bottle of no-name cola and loathing the Tucson heat with every fiber of his being. He liked visiting Brad, he really did, but the thing that so far had tried their relationship far beyond the distance between them was just how damned hot it got in Arizona in every season but winter. Warren hoped that once they made it through their current discussion the weather would still be the only thing to worry about.
“So what am I bracing myself for, now that you’ve assured me twice in the past five minutes that this isn’t a we-need-to-talk kind of talk?” asked Brad, who himself was seated in a patio chair he’d converted into a sort of combination succulent planter and throne. He was having plain water as usual. Brad was not unlike his pet plants at times.
“You’re bracing yourself for me to say what will sound like the stupidest thing in the world,” said Warren.
Brad wrinkled his nose. “You’re not going to suggest we get married, are you?”
“God no. If I ever did it wouldn’t be while we’re both in the middle of two different grad programs.” Warren took another swig of cola and placed the bottle against his cheek. It was sweaty and so was he. “The stupidest thing in the world is that for the past few months, a little after the last time I left, I’ve been dealing with a were-vagina.”
“A were what now.”
“Like I said, stupidest thing in the world,” said Warren. He shifted his weight to better be blasted by the large box fan Brad kept on hand for when he visited. “For the three days around the full moon, my dick is just gone, and I’ve got some other bits instead. It just happened out of the blue. I don’t remember terrorizing any little old ladies or getting bitten by wild animals or whatever. Just, boom. Here it is. Now I get to deal with it.”
“Warren, darling,” said Brad in his calmest voice. “Are you doing the thing where you lead into something difficult with something hyperbolic so the actual thing you want to talk about doesn’t seem so bad in comparison? Because this is a pretty weird way to do it.”
Warren took another pull from his cola. “I knew you’d call bullshit,” he said. “It’s why once this kept happening I figured it’d be easiest just to show you. First night of the full moon’s tonight. Last night you saw me naked before jet lag got the better of me and I succumbed to the Odinsleep. Here’s what I woke up with.” He hooked a thumb in the band of his shorts and pulled them down lewdly.
There wasn’t much to say, really: Warren, who normally had a penis of unremarkable character serving as his genitals, instead had a full vulval array, itself bearing a clit of unremarkable character. He spread himself demonstrably. It still felt a little weird to him.
“Huh,” said Brad. “You ever been awake when it switches over?” That he was reacting with curiosity instead of disgust was a source of no small relief to Warren, who’d known more than a few friends who’d shared shitty opinions with him regarding boyfriends who weren’t factory standard. He’d taken that as a sign to get new friends.
Warren shrugged. “Yeah, but I’ve never noticed until after the fact. I just stand up, get something from the kitchen or whatever, then sit down again and realize things feel different. Usually I only notice after waking up in the morning, though.”
Brad leaned forward, his forearms on his knees. “So what all can it do?”
“No idea,” said Warren. “I mean, I had to browse enough tween-focused resources just to figure out how to jack off with this thing that I think I’m on some kind of creepy list. I don’t know how deep it goes. I don’t think I want to find out, either, since experimentation has proven I don’t like putting things in it, and that doing so is, in fact, a very bad idea.”
“But you can jack off with it?”
“I just push a bullet vibe up against my clit and that generally takes care of things.” He finished his cola and put the empty bottle on the side table. “You’re taking this pretty well.”
This got a laugh out of Brad. “Why not take it well? Here I thought this was going to be a normal visit. Never thought you’d be able to get that much magical realism through an airport checkpoint. You said it only lasts three days and you’re still in town for over a week, so I don’t see why I should be too worked up about not getting access to your cock for some of that. We can wait out this were-vagina of yours and just do other things together until then.”
Warren released the elastic of his shorts and slumped with relief. He hadn’t realized how much he’d been tensed up over this. “I feel like an ogre for saying this,” he said, “but I had managed to convince myself you’d go on some gross tangent about a ‘bonus hole’ or something and it’d go nowhere good. No offense, babe.”
“People actually say that? Huh.” Brad scratched the top of his smooth-shaven head. “I mean, I’m not into it, you could get your clit right up in my face and I’d just sort of sit there, but I’m still into you. We can always buy a strap-on and have you peg me with it in the interim or something. You feeling more at touch with your feminine side since this started?”
“Brad, I’ve just got a case of were-vagina, femininity has nothing to do with it.”
It wasn’t necessarily the worst question to ask in the grand scheme of things, but save from having to learn a whole new way of taking a piss Warren hadn’t felt like he’d changed as a person because of his condition. He still felt very much like a man, and a pretty gay man at that. He’d had a pretty good time of getting sucked off after getting in from the airport the other day and hadn’t felt anything amiss. Still, it had seemed appropriate at the time to sit down for a bit and evaluate the gender thing, and so Warren had, and found it the same as always.
During the vast majority of the month when he actually had a dick and balls they felt like they were the correct anatomy for their location, and during the full moon his vagina felt pretty normal, too, as mildly annoyed as he was for it to be there. Tracking the lunar cycle to better schedule visits wasn’t that much more effort in the long run. Besides, Warren had told himself after the second time his genitalia had retopographied, it wasn’t like he had to deal with cramps or headaches or any of the myriad woes his sisters had to deal with. He didn’t feel wrong, just weird and different.
If this was the way life was going to be for him, well, so long as Brad didn’t mind then Warren didn’t have much reason to mind, either.
After a little more swapping of trivia, Brad lost interest in Warren’s crotch and the conversation drifted towards how their respective degrees were going, and that was the end of that for a while.
They made good on their plans to go out camping once the heat of the day passed, which meant that when night fell and the moon rose they were in a proper place to actually howl at it. Nobody needed a full moon to change these days, similar to how nobody needed to apply weird ointments or piss in a circle around their clothes or make belts from questionable materials, but Warren always felt most at ease changing under the stars. It was how he and Brad had first met, too, so there was sentimental value to loping beneath the night sky wearing nothing but their own fur.
Much to Warren’s chagrin, the damned were-vagina tagged along even as the rest of him shaped itself into something primal and powerful.
“It makes sense,” said Brad as they fed on a mule deer they’d hunted themselves. “I mean, it’s not like you’re less of a wolf because your dick’s elsewhere. Magical realism or not, your vag is natural, so it changed with you.”
Warren licked some deer blood off his claws. “I was hoping I could catch a break,” he grumbled. “I hadn’t tried turning while I had it before, so I was holding out for the chance that maybe I could reset things. I really wanted to mount you under the stars like back when we were both at Austin Peay.” The woods of Tennessee had been much better for Warren’s disposition than any part of Arizona, which was a major reason why he’d stayed in the southeast even as Brad’s seismology studies lured him elsewhere. The mid-south had some fantastic forests to run around in no matter how much fur you wore at the time.
Brad scoffed. “Like I said, we can buy you a strap-on for that. I know a guy. Until then we’ll just wait until the moon’s waning gibbous before you stick it in.” He cracked a bone between his teeth and gnawed at the exposed marrow. “If you’re horny you can always see if your neck’s long enough to take care of yourself.”
“For God’s sake, Brad,” said Warren with a laugh.
“I’m just saying. The first time I changed I was terrified. The second time I spent it all in my room because I figured out I could reach.” He curled up to demonstrate that he could, in fact, still do so. Warren once again longed for the status quo. “Your mileage may vary, but I’ve found sometimes the best mouth for the job is my own.”
“Less talking, more eating,” said Warren. “I smell normie wolves around here and I do not have the wherewithal to deal with them today.”
“You mean were-withal, right?”
Warren flipped him the bird and did his best to concentrate on rooting for viscera instead.
The deer didn’t last long between them; they were both big men and it’d been a while since their last hunt. Exams had been a nightmare that semester. Brad cleaned his muzzle and cocked his head towards the ridge where their tent lay.
“Come on, you mopey sack of a scientist,” he said. “Let’s run around like idiots a little more and then get back to the tent so we can do something about your sulking. I know you packed some toys.”
Warren made a noncommittal noise. “It’s kind of hard to get excited when I know you’re not that interested in fucking me like this,” he said. He had enough time to step away from their meal before Brad tackled him, play-snarling.
“You are being such a weenus about this, my dear,” he said through his bared fangs. The snarling and tackling was normal, especially when he wanted to goat Warren into turning the tables and topping him something fierce, but Brad only ever broke out my dear when he was tired of Warren’s shit. “I still want to help you get off, I’m just not interested in going down on you or sticking my dick in there or whatever. Didn’t you say the latter sucked for you, anyway? Come on.” He stepped off of Warren and pranced in place. “Quit worrying about your junk for fifteen minutes and let’s run.”
Run they did. The swiftness of a wolf and tireless heart of a human meant amalgamations of the two made for a regular marathon champion. Brad and Warren loped through the brush with abandon; sometimes they went on two legs and sometimes four, and either way they left a trail sure to confuse the next naturalist who came through. They ran until Warren felt the knot of tension in his guts completely ease up for the first time in weeks. A quick dip in a pond that hadn’t completely succumbed to Tucson’s summertime swelter left him feeling like a new man.
Upon returning to their campsite they flopped against each other in their tent, neither bothering to change back yet. So long as someone remembered to have thumbs at all times they tended to take it easy during their camping trips. In this case, taking it easy meant not bothering to look human until either they bedded down for the night or the sun started coming up. It hadn’t been that long since they’d managed an all-nighter. Warren idly wondered if it would be worth planning their next visit around doing exactly that.
Brad nosed Warren and nipped at his ears affectionately. “Feeling better yet?”
Warren thought about it. “Yeah, I think so.”
“Great. Which pocket did you put your goodies in? I’ll help get you set up.”
Some discussion resulted in them settling on the plain, drugstore-beige vibrator that Warren had bought for himself ages ago and never done anything with. Warren lay in the unfamiliar position of on his back with his legs spread while Brad checked the batteries. The vibe looked like a sci-fi banana by way of 1973. Warren cringed. He knew academically that people of various genders used these things all the time and thought they were very nice, but he had yet to be convinced it would be worth the trouble. Did they even work that well if you used them externally? He supposed he was about to find out.
Brad twisted the base of the vibe and it whirred to life. It was comically small in his hand but he held it deftly all the same. He ran the juddering tip along Warren’s outer lips.
“No penetration, right?”
Warren nodded. He had no desire to repeat what had happened during earlier experiments, which had been agony despite only using a well-lubed pinky finger.
“Great. I’m going to see how to make you come with this so you can stop with the train of thought I know you’re thinking where you’re freaking out about your super-gay boyfriend leaving you because of the vag thing.” He angled the vibrator against Warren’s clit, making him gasp. “Tell me if something sucks. Otherwise I’ll take care of everything.”
For a man whose primary experience with a vagina involved coming out of one, Brad was surprisingly good at figuring out what to do with Warren. He didn’t just mash the vibe in one spot and leave it; instead Brad moved things around, teasing at an inner lip or along Warren’s inner thigh before roaming back to more sensitive tissue. Once Warren was good and wound up Brad lay the vibrator against the front of his vulva with the tip once more against Warren’s clit. He then pressed Warren’s legs together, trusting the leg muscles that could spring with pickup-smashing force to keep the little toy in place. It was a lot more effective than Warren’s previous approaches of just shoving a bullet vibe or two into his briefs and hoping for the best.
When Warren started growling the way he did when he was close and changed, Brad leaned in to offer the back of his neck in a very thoughtful gesture. Warren always did have respect for the classics.
Coming worked very much like it always had for him, in that he had a sort of full-body sneeze focused on feeling very good in and around the bathing suit area, but he didn’t make so much as a drop of come in the process, which was not the sort of convenient cleanup he was used to. He carefully released his hold on Brad’s neck.
“That worked out all right, I guess,” he said once he caught his breath.
Brad grinned. “Feeling like more of an alpha wolf now?”
“That whole model’s based on shitty science and you know it,” Warren grumbled.
“What do I know about animals?” asked Brad, still grinning. “You know us seismologists: we only care if we feel the earth move.”
“Ugh. The instant we get back, we’re talking to that guy you know so I can have the satisfaction of shutting you up with some sort of dick in your pun-spewing gob.”
“You could always go for the autocunnilingus route if you’re still feeling orally fixated. I mean, you can probably reach, and if your tackle box there works the way they said in health class you’re not going to have much of a cooldown at all. Think about it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I just got chomped the fuck out by my werewolf boyfriend and it gave me a boner, so I have some jerking off of my own to do….”
In the end it turned out that provided he had a pillow to brace against Warren could reach himself, too. He went to bed only slightly conflicted.
The morning sun brought with it morning heat and Warren grimaced at the pointed lack of air conditioning that greeted him upon awakening. He performed a cursory check of his anatomy—the were-vagina, which was a terrible term for it but so accurate he could scarcely think of something better, was still there—before getting dressed enough to go start some campfire coffee.
Brad dragged himself out of the tent once the smell of the coffee started wafting through their camp. He was wearing a pair of pajama pants that had been swapped between them so many times nobody remembered who their original owner was; whoever paid to travel to see the other one got to take them home as a memento. Warren handed him a mug of steaming black brew.
“Mornin’. The were-vag still where it was?”
“At least it’s predictable. Before you ask, I didn’t wake up with one of my own.” Brad took a long pull of his paving-tar-consistency coffee. “So we’ve got what, two more nights and then your cock’s back? I can live with that.”
Warren poked at the skillet full of breakfast scramble he was cooking. “I said it before and I’ll say it again, Brad. You’re taking this weirdly well.”
“Eh,” said Brad. “We turn into monsters and roam the countryside for funsies, and we’re both decently well-off queers who insist on pursuing weird-ass fields of study instead of something more reasonable like server administration. One more wacky detail is just a drop in the bucket.” He held out his now empty mug, which Warren refilled. “And once we talk to that guy I know things will be more or less back to normal.”
A thought crossed Warren’s mind. “This guy you know, does he make harnesses for humans or for, you know…?”
Brad smiled around his coffee cup. “Both.”
“And I take it you know another guy, possibly the same guy as the first one, who makes toys for both sizes, too?”
Warren thought about this further. Some cursory investigation had introduced him to the concept of the kind of vibe that you strapped in place, and pairing that with a hot-swappable dong in various exciting shapes and colors sounded like a combination worth exploring. Maybe this wouldn’t be so inconvenient after all. “Neat.”
“Extremely,” said Brad. “You want to pass me some of those eggs? I’ve been having venison burps since I woke up and hot people food’s the only sure-fire cure.”
“Sounds fake to me,” said Warren even as he scooped some not-quite-omelette into a bowl. Everything had gone without a hitch, more or less, and so long as he kept himself kitted out in batteries he’d be able to handle the more whimsical parts of his life. He could live with that. All he needed to get to the end of this lunar cycle was the werewithal to do so.
God damn it. Brad had a lot to answer for.