TBP: Off His Noggin'
I smiled as I lapped up the last of my Halloween eggnog from the bottom of the glass, then sat back and listened to Josh talk about his latest.
"And then," he said, the voice bolting from the voder around his neck, "And then I got up on the table, slipped my voder around my neck, and told him, 'Listen. I'm as kinky as the next guy. But forget the leash!'"
Everyone at the table laughed, myself included. It's always fun to 'get' the idiots that figure we think like animals because we look like animals. I sighed as my eyelids drooped.
"Listen, guys," I said as I help up my hand, "I'm a bit out of it right now. I'm going to go see if Donnie'll let me snooze under the table."
"Before or after you change?"
"Why, Wolfshead, what a thought! After, of course," I replied with a grin and a touch of British voice.
The table broke up in mixed laughter and howls as I stood up and headed for the ... ahem ... little wolves' room.
(Donnie was suspicious, of course ... who wouldn't be? But he didn't stop me.)
Once inside, I took the opportunity to use the horizontal urinal, then took off my clothes in preparation for the shift. I carefully folded them on the floor near the drain, then made the switch.
As I stood up from the cold, cold tile, I noticed the floor was moving. It was so funny, I just had to smile. I felt good. Kinda funny. But good.
On the third try, I scooooooped my clothes up from the floor. I felt goooooood ...
As Wanderer emerged from the restroom, Jack turned on his bench. Something seemed wrong ... well, besides the fact that he was down on all fours with his clothes in his mouth. It was way too early in the evening for that.
Suddenly, Wanderer's furry form lurched to one side, striking the potted plant near the restroom door.
"Wanderer? Hay, Wan! You okay?"
I stopped out the ... stepped out the d-door, and the flllloor was still muh- ... muhvin'. Hit a tree.
Jack said somethin'. Like Jack. Jack'sa great guy, Jack. Triedta turn aroun' an' hit th'wall.
Jack'sa great guy. Like'm.
Wukked over'n luh- ... luhkked at 'im.
He's'a great guy, Jack.
After Jack spoke, the room fell silent as Wanderer lurched again, this time bouncing off the wall. Then he slowly and carefully stepped over to Jack and looked him in the face, grinning around his clothes.
"You all right, Wan?"
Wanderer seemed to sway in place, his eyes riveted on Jack's familiar features. Then he just as suddenly turned and began walking back to the other Lupine Boys.
A few people giggled as he followed a meandering path across the floor, sometimes tripping over his own feet. As he passed Donnie's position at the bar, he turned and stared at the bovine barkeep, squinting and staring. Suddenly, he fell over and lay there, his tongue hanging out of his mouth as his clothes fell from his jaws.
Wuh- ... wuhkked away fr'm Jack. Wanna get back t'm'boyzzzzzzz ... m' Luh-... Loo- ... Lahoo- ...
Saw Dohnuhnuhnie. Dohnuhnuhnie? Sumpin' ... not right ...
I feel goooood ...
Dohnaneenee. Looks f- ... f- ... great. Lika big bull. He'sa great guy.
Greeeeeat guh- ...
Everyone could hear the Lupine Boys snickering at their booth as Wanderer rolled around, to all appearances having a fine old time on the floor.
"Oh, come on, Wan," called Edwina from one side of the room. "We know you're not drunk."
But Wanderer merely rolled around, looking almost as though he was laughing.
"Wanderer?," came the voice of Lisa from her usual seat at the bar. But Wanderer ignored them all.
At a table, Bob Stein and Bryan Derksen were playing a friendly game of cards when Dr. Derksen's feelers began to wave. Placing his cards face down on the table, he looked around and spied Wanderer.
"Yeah, Bryan," Posti replied, too engrossed in his cards to devote much attention to watching his surroundings.
"I think something might be wrong with Wanderer."
"Hm?" Posti looked up and scanned the room, finally locating the slowly moving form of the wolfish actor's more bestial form. "Looks okay to me."
"But he smells wrong," Bryan murmured through his vodor as he fidgeted his way through a complete turn. "I'll be right back."
"Take your time," Posti said, already figuring out a way to get a peek at Bryan's cards.
Bah-HA! HA! HAAAAAhahahaha ... haha ... hoo ...
See bug. Big bug. Burksen. He's'a dukock. Dukock?
D'n like bugs. He's'a guhah ... gahrate grr.
The littl' spucker roun' his n- ... wh' izzat? Nock his nock. Wha'ever.
He's'a greeeeeat guy.
Bryan Derksen inhaled deeply through his carapace, sampling the specific atmosphere that surrounded Wanderer. Ketones, he thought to himself.
Way too many ketones. But where'd they come from?
"Donnie," he said through the buzzing annoyance around his neck, "What's he had tonight?"
Donnie replied with a series of four hand signs. C-O-K-E.
"Hmmm ... anything else?"
Even as Donnie shook his head, Tony, the assistant bartender, spoke up.
"Yeah, he had some'a the eggnog earlier."
"What's in it?" asked Posti, who'd come up while Bryan had been asking.
"Nothin'. Just that stuff they sell at the supermarket, y'know?"
"How much did he have?" came the synthesized voice of Bryan.
"He wanted a large shot, but we were out," replied the tiger-man. "So I gave 'im a schooner."
"Oh, wonderful," said another voice from down the bar as its owner stood up and moved toward the fallen wolf.
"What?" said Tony as the others turned to face Doctor Brian Coe.
"Let me guess," said Derksen before anyone could speak. "The eggs?"
"Hold it," said Posti. "You mean he's drunk on eggs?"
"Well, said Bryan, "I usually see it only in my musteline and raccoon-morph patients. No offense, Brian."
"None taken," replied the optometrist. "Until tonight, I thought it was just a 'coon thing."
"He okay?" asked the large figure of Lupe, who'd wandered over from the booth.
"Yeah," said the roachmorph. "He's fine. Just a bit too much eggnog."
Alllllllla' my frien's. Lotsa frien's. M'pack.
Wanna taka nap. Wanna ...
"Hey," said Posti as Wanderer stilled. "What now?"
"Oh, not much," replied Dr. Coe. He's just going to sleep it off. You see... "
"If you're going to explain this, I'm heading back to my cards."
"Okay, Bryan," the raccoon-morph replied, moving aside to let him pass. "Anyway, what happens is this: when a raccoon, or weasel, or whatever, has too much egg in their system, it acts like a sedative. The blood pressure drops, the heart rate slows, and sooner or later, you just fall asleep."
"But he's okay?" asked Tony.
"Oh, he's fine ... he'll just wake up with a really fuzzy memory of walking out of the bathroom."
"How come this never happened before," Posti asked as Tony and Donnie returned to their duties.
"Probably because a schooner holds more than a large shot glass," Brian said with a shrug. "He simply never had enough to worry about before. Besides, he doesn't usually shift right after drinking eggnog. The lower body mass just made it worse."
"We'll take him home," came Josh's artificial tenor from below as Lupe scooped Wanderer up in his arms. "Anything we should know?"
"Not really," said Brian as they turned away. "Just make sure he doesn't have any early appointments. With all those fats in him, when he wakes up he's going to be sick as aŚ ...well, you know."
With that, the momentary crowd dispersed, and Posti returned to his game. But before he picked up his cards, he asked Bryan, "Say, how'd you know something was wrong?"
"When your nose takes up your whole back," replied his friend, "you tend to notice these things. Oh, and Posti?"
"I can smell you on my cards. New deal."
Copyright 1997 by Wanderer. If you want to post this anywhere else, please ask for permission first. Thank you.
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