Anxiety and worry had been on my mind for the past few days. I couldn't help it. Worry and fear were my default states no matter how hard I tried to be otherwise. That's why it was going to happen. That's why it was going to happen tomorrow.
My implant surgery had to wait until its scheduled appointment. At first my owners tried to assure me by arming me with all the knowledge they could about the implant. I was given a pamphlet, Your Implant And You. It had information about getting implanted and stuff and even a little diagram of the weird bug shaped growth that'd attach to my spine. It wasn't alive in the thinking sense but it still looked pretty creepy.
I even got shown the growing implant. They were developing it a lot more beforehand than normal to help it integrate faster. A weird plant grown from my owners. A bug plant that was going to latch onto me and make me better…
The whole pamphlet was in floret speak which was an oddly formal thing for how cutesy the writing was. Floret-speak just like Master's habitation unit's A.I. Just like a lot of things. Always super condescending but that was just affini. They were better than us lowly pets and well… My mind halted there, unable to find a bad word to think of myself with.
The worry persisted through the explanations and the information. It was trauma, specifically catastrophizing. Mistress explained that my mind was hardwired to look for every conceivable way something could go wrong and fixate on it until I was having an anxiety attack. The solution was obvious. Evie needed to be distracted.
Thus my owners had been keeping me busy for three days to keep me happy. I wasn't allowed to be unhappy. Stars, I loved them even if they spoiled me. I wanted to help and make them happy, but they were all focused on helping me not be miserable. They weren't fair. Bunch of benevolently tyrannical loving owner plants.
It was Master's turn to give me super focused attention and play time. True to his word he set up a little space in his studio just for me to play. A spot for me to make. To create. I made a few things so far and now I was working on my biggest thing yet.
My hands shaped and formed the clay. I had dried dusty bits all over me from working with the messy substance. Still, it was super nice because of how it could be firm and hold its shape while also being soft enough to just bend and deform at my touch. It was on the table before me as I sat on a little stool Master got for me. All of it sized for my tiny form.
On the table I had a number of little sculpting tools for when I wanted tiny details, little wiry ones, little edged ones to peel the soft clay back. I got to poke and prod the lump of most soil into whatever I could imagine. I couldn't imagine things super well so I just felt it all out as I went. Knowing things ahead of time and planning and stuff was for my owners. I just improvised. Master assured me that improvising was valid.
My current work was about a foot and a half tall and was a very vaguely humanoid figure sort of bent over and holding its torso. By vague I mean blobs of shape. I knew what the shapes were. I could see what it was supposed to be. The biggest feature to my lumpy waist up silhouette was the big hole in their torso. Their arms were under it like they were catching something falling out. Nothing was falling out because it was a hole.
Master told me all about how clay sculpting could work. He picked a terran art form and one that could be adapted to work better with affini stuff. With normal terran techniques this would be too lumpy to use in a kiln and it'd crack. Master instead got a device that'd do the same thing without breaking my artwork because I did the shapes wrong.
After the kiln stuff, I'd get to paint it with glaze. Cause my first tiny work came out all chalky and rough with bad texture from the kiln. Glazing was using fancy paint that made the surface smooth and glassy. I liked running my fingers along the material. It was really texture. Also, I got to use pretty colors so it was visually pleasant as well.
My mouth nibbled on a vine. Master's vine. Master was working on a pretty abstract painting full of color and stuff in the studio next to me. A single vine of theirs was left for me to stim on while I worked since that helped me stay calm and focused. They were in a neutral leaning femme form. They were also covered in paint. Apparently we were both really messy but we were allowed to be. I had permission to get messy and have fun, and I did! Just sculpting fun and stimming and no worries…
A hand landed on my head as I was looking over my work. "That's turning out very beautifully little one. Your art is so very expressive, I can see all the little feelings you placed so skillfully into your rendition of your soul."
"I-I uh, than-th.. My s-soul?!? Ahhhh?!" Master was saying weird things and complimenting me and afjahnskjghasdkghaskfh. It wasn't even good! It was like all lumpy and vague and the shoulders were mismatched and the arms were too small and the head to big and there weren't even hands and-
"Why of course!" Master had fully turned their immense attention onto me and my sculpture. "The shape is ill defined as you don't see yourself clearly, the pose of being hunched over an expression of how you curl up to protect yourself, the hole left by the pain of your past."
"Wha-What?! I just thought it'd be like cool and a little edgy to like make a person with a hole in their heart…" My owner was reading way too into my weird sculpture thingy. This wasn't me. It was all vague and weird and abstract and incomprehensible beyond vague humanoid. Like I chose a pretty typical and cliché thing that had been popular for centuries. A hole in the chest to be all emo and stuff.
Master tickled under my chin and as the finger pulled away I noticed the splotchy red paint. Chin scritches were apparently a popular way to silence Evie thoughts. A light chin touch of my own confirmed the messiness of paint had reached my chin. Master's words pulled my attention. "Flower, that concept resonated with you for a reason and you filled in the idea with your own thoughts and feelings. Art tends to take on a life of its own, showing parts of ourselves beyond what we intend. All the gaps between your intentions get filled with your honest self."
That… That was way too vague and philosophical and ill-defined and didn't make sense. I liked it when things made sense. This was just a doodle not like a big grand thing. I was just having fun. Art was supposed to be fun. Sculpting was tactile and satisfying and I was just trying to enjoy myself in the act.
A paint covered hand messed up my hair and got it extra messy. "It's okay, petal. You are doing wonderfully and it'll be a delight to see how this turns out."
I looked down… finishing it… It was nearing bed time and tomorrow was my implant surgery. Not really enough time to finish it, and I couldn't like leave it to dry for weeks. Plus, I wouldn't even be the same Evie when I woke up. I was going to get my memories taken away and become a different, better Evie. An Evie without trauma or worries or anxiety or any other bad thing. She'd have to finish it.
"Pet, you have a worry. Tell me." Master Abies ordered. The weight of the evergreen's presence forced me into compliance.
"I-I'm worried it won't get finished because of my surgery and stuff." The words spilled from my mouth. I immediately shut my mouth as I had not been told to say more. Master was the most strict on approved speech but it made everything easier. I didn't have to worry about awkward silences when all the silences were intentional. Still, it wasn't an always on thing. I had a sense for when I was and wasn't in strict speech mode.
Master picked me up in their messy paint splotched arms while their vines started cleaning up the studio. "You'll get to finish. This will all be waiting for you when you recover, and you'll have a fresh new perspective to shape it with. I'm sure you'll do wonderfully." My big fuzzy owner assured me. "Now time to get us washed up and get you into bed. Little pets need sleep." I was a little pet and needed to be washed and then sleep.
Master whisked me away to bath time. I was stripped of my layers of Evie clothes and ended up looking down and seeing… something not awful. It was better. I didn't feel horrible looking down at myself seeing developing boobs and hips. It hadn't even been that long. They were all developing before from my old HRT, but never fast enough to like notice. It hadn't even been that long… not that I remembered how long it had been.
Still, Master covered up my body and dipped me in the water. The soft fuzzy pine needle covered vines scrubbed me clean of clay and paint, and I wiggled and writhed and whimpered. Every splotch of paint, and bit of clay was taken off of me while Master tormented my xenodrugged form with delicate touches.
Their hands then began massaging shampoo into my scalp and I melted. My thoughts got all blissed up and soft and not very thinky.
"Oh, is my little one enjoying the mind cleansing shampoo?" My owner asked. Mind cleany shampoo…
I replied, "Beep!" Yes.
The towering affini chuckled at how cute I was cause I was cuuute. "Such a lovely adorable little beeper and a good little Evie."
"Beep!" Happy feelings filled my head and everything else in there scooted over.
I finished getting washed up and then was dressed for sleepies. Master put the big white tiger plushie into my arms and I cuddled it to sleep in my owner's vines.
Despite how quickly I drifted off I still managed to hear them say, "Sweet dreams little one."
I still had the plushie in my arms as I was carried into the veterinarian's office by my master in one of their feminine forms. A big buff pine tree of a butch affini and yet the same tyrannical loving owner I always knew. They were definitely using less masc and more femme body weavings since the date. Master was a big gay plant preforming gender in a way to fluster and confuse me. Intentionally. I knew that they knew that I knew what they were doing. It still worked.
My Mistresses and connivents were here too. All walking beside us. Even Synna who normally was too busy constantly being gay with every woman on the ship. Everyone was here for me because I was about to get put under and when I woke up… she'd still remember this. She'd remember the thoughts I was having now, just without all the baggage I still had. All the trauma I still had. The pain…
The halls were distinctly familiar as this was the same veterinarian's office where I met Miss Sanctia. The same one where I stood still long enough to fall asleep. The halls where I left in Master's arms to be taken to his home.
The same floret woman greeted us and directed us to operating room two. That's where we split off from my Mistress's and connivents as they went to the observational room. Master set me down on the table while I saw Nilla wave to me enthusiastically from Miss Nia's arms. I waved back gently only to notice Synna wave her tail at me and wink… fkjgsdaklhgaklsjdhgaksljhgrsl.
With all the blood in my face surely I wasn't healthy enough for surgery and-
"It's good to see you again, flower." Miss Sanctia was here. The same thick feminine blue-rose affini I met before to get my class-G. My veterinarian and today, my surgeon.
Master was beside me and ordered. "Greet Miss Sanctia, little one."
I complied immediately with a wave and a few words. "H-Hi Miss Sanctia." My mouth shut right after.
She smiled at me soft and a tiny bit smug. "To think you're back so soon for your implant, your owners must have rushed things. I was confident you'd take longer to come around."
"Ah-" I quickly shut my mouth and covered it with my sleeves. I hadn't been spoken to in a way I was allowed to respond to. The feeling of Master's presence told me that.
The affini giggled at my reaction and patted me on the head. "So adorable. You'll be a good girl and relax for me won't you?" I nodded vigorously. She patted my head. "Good girl~ now sleep tight."
Master slid a needle into me and I faded out…
A big long wonderful dream of squirming, squeaking, and shivering in raw bliss lasted for an eternity. Time lost meaning. Sounds and songs and rhythms abounded around me as my thoughtless little head perceived moan inducing sensations. There was no capacity for anything other than pleasure, bliss, and ecstasy. Lucidity was very far away despite the occasional words from my lips. Utterances of a mind being tinkered and altered and bound in roots.
The dream of love, cuddles, and gay went on as one by one little bits of me was swept away. Unnecessary bits. Bits that got in the way of the dream bestowed with love and care. Vines writhed and grew and expanded into every corner of my head until they could touch every thought I had ever had, and every thought I would ever have. The roots carried the love of three owners and possessed my little frame.
There were many ways to wake from a dream. Lucidity could come slowly upon waking and let traces of the dream linger. It could come abrupt and strong immediately pulling you to attention. Lastly, lucidity could come before waking. To awake in a dream and see it as if it were life. To feel it so strongly and vividly even more so than the waking world, yet know that it was a dream.
I sat in a half remembered apartment. My home… No, this didn't look like either of my hab units. It felt familiar and yet so distant. I was sitting on the side of the bed, a mess of familiar and unremembered things was scattered all around. My owners didn't leave messes like this. And Hab units weren't small like this.
"Hey." The word drew my attention to its speaker. A girl, a woman. Her blood red eyes with slitted pupils looked down on me. Her fangs glinted with a knowing smirk. The woman's hair was snow white with cat ears atop her head. She wore a rather colorful revealing companion dress accentuating every curve on her tiny frame. A frame that appeared at first glance human but didn't move as fluidly as muscle. The micro movements of flesh were missing.
Lastly, she had a suitcase packed like the one Master carried around for me back when we first met. The cat girl robot's hand firmly grasped it. "You'll be needing this." She held out the handle.
"Uh…" I was… awake. This was a dream. My owners weren't here, but I still felt their presences.
"Kitten, are you going to take this?" Her white tail with black stripes swished behind her. "Wait, you're more of a doll aren't you."
I kept hearing a voice kinda like my voice coming from her… "I'm dreaming right?"
"And you're my subconscious?"
"Hon, I'm your implant." The cat girl answered with a smirk. "Thanks for the memories. They were delicious." She was my implant… Implants weren't supposed to talk. They were supposed to be all techy and not smart. Everything in all the reading and stuff I was told said this didn’t happen. Implants weren't independent enough to think. I knew that.
The cat-girl implant woman who looked familiar cleared her throat. "Doll, I can hear your thoughts, and yea I'm not supposed to be thinking, but I'm processing the last of your memories here for deletion then I'll be all gone and you can forget about me too."
Oh gosh, she was reading my mind! The implant ate my memories and now… I couldn't remember a lot. I couldn't even remember what I looked like. None of the memories I had left involved really looking at myself. My eyes went up to the cat girl still holding the bag out. It felt weird talking out loud even in the dream so I just thought about the question. Why are you a cute cat-girl?
My implant sighed. She dropped the suitcase and plopped down on the bed with me pulling me into a side hug. It was comfy and nice and she was the exact same height as me. "Because this is what you really want to look like and I was showing you since you're dense and need help. I'm designed to help and give you what you need to be the best pet you can be. Currently that's… this." She gestured vaguely with the hand that wasn't holding me in a side hug.
I mean she was cute and uh, I wouldn't mind being a soft cat-girl robot… Right, that's what she was explaining. Stars, I was being silly. Thinking was really weird. So different from before. Before I was all weird and anxious now I had like a smile on my face and could just lean all happy on my implants shoulder. This was a silly dream. I liked it.
"Yup, you're very silly, adorable, and cute, and wonderful and all those other things. Your thoughts are a bit off because I gorged myself on your memories and there's not much left in here." She knocked on my skull. "You don't have much left to think about so your thoughts are a bit slow right now." Yeah, my thoughts did feel slow or… chill! Chill was the right word I think. The memories were gone, but I still remembered stuff I learned in them. Miss Nia explained I was getting a bunch of bad thoughts taken away… I acted so weird before, except when I got super cuddly and soft. I liked being soft. My owners helped me feel that way before but well, now I had my implant to help me feel that way all the time! Yea that was nice and-
I got nibbled on causing me to yelp! "dsjhfdsfj Wha-what was that!"
"You were all stuck in your own head inside your own head… Stars, you're silly." She giggled and I giggled with her. Gosh, I was silly. Also gay. A cute girl nibbling me was too much for my gay heart. "Besides, we both know you like getting bit." Mind reader. She snorted a laugh.
Getting bitten, hmmm. "Yeah…" I thought dreamily back to Mx Dian, the lurker in the vines and her bites. A big dopey smile was on my face. A bigger one than the small one from before. Gosh, my owners were so great and amazing and I didn't say that enough. I was going to say it more! If Evie needed to use words then telling my owners how amazing they were was a good use of wording.
My owners were wonderful. The way Miss Nia would gently hold me and pet me without ever overwhelming my gay heart. Something that was so easy to do that it showed how much effort she put into making me comfy. Mx Dian and her aggressive dominance that made my heart race at a million miles an hour. How she could take things like fear and pain and turn them into something sooo good. Even with her quirky intensity she could still be gentle and kind. Then there was Master. Master was so forward and direct and controlling in all the right ways. So quick to comfort and praise and yet could break me with a word. The loner affini who stayed apart felt the need to keep me around in their safe private space and that made me feel so special. I had the best owners in all the stars and I loved them so so much I could cry and laugh and cry again. Stars, feeling their presence in the dream made me soo happy.
Finally, I broke the small loop of internal admiration and looked around. My focus on the weird place that was too small for anyone to live in. A messy place that belonged to someone in need of an owner. "What is this place?"
"A memory. One of the last ones. You used to live here and well, you grabbed that bag of everything you could carry and you went and met your Master. They're waiting. Your Mistress's too, along with your girlfriends." Wait, what was my implant on about girlfriends? I didn't remember getting a girlfriend. Synna made comments about girlfriends and I really needed to ask my owners if I could be her girlfriend. Synna was like super cool and great and hot and gay and I was gonna tell her all of that once whatever this was ended.
Oh and I'd have to tell Nilla that she's super adorable and cute and I love her and that we should cuddle more! Maybe we could be girlfriends, but like different from being girlfriends to Synna. Gosh, then I could go on dates with both of them and maybe our owners would be there and we'd be adorable and jogahdgfahjsdkgahjsdgkjashdkgasdhkgjhasdkgjhsadkgjdsahkfjhasdkash
I got a peck on the cheek from the cat-girl implant sophont thing jkfahskjghasdlkjgahsdkafghsedifhgasdjhfasgjkfasdgjgasdjkfhgdsakjfgasdjkfgsadjhf
"What were the words you liked to use… Oh right, you're sooooo gay. Evie you're gay and wonderful and seriously take the bag and get on the wake up train." My implant was being really pushy here for a piece of bioware. Like if she was my implant couldn't she make me wake up? "Yes I can, but it's cleaner if you voluntarily handle walking away from this memory."
I thought about it. I did really really really want to get back to my owners, but… "What about you? I just met you and you're nice and stuff. Won't you stop existing if I walk away."
"Yea, I will because that's what I'm supposed to do. I'm a temporary conscious construct. If I didn't have more memories than you right now we wouldn't be having this talk. But seriously I've got memories to delete, and you need to tell your owners you want to be mecha cat-girl with white hair." Hmm I should tell my owners that because gosh the look was great. Still… "Kitten, I will toss you out on your butt."
I turned to the cute cat-girl wearing a face that might be my own if I knew what my face looked like. Then I gave her a kiss on the cheek, because nice cute girls deserve cheek kisses. "You're cute."
"I look like you, you big cutie! Sorry, small cutie. You are very tiny and it's adorable. Really makes it easier to get my roots everywhere they need to be." My implant was a dork. "Hey!" A massive dorky implant. I should have assumed as such when it was taken from the samples of big dorky aliens.
Looking over my implant was… blushing. I made my implant blush! "Shut up…" She muttered being extra pouty cute. Wow, she was right I was gay. And she deserved to feel gay too. "fajshdgkujasdhkgjadshkgjhsad Evie! Evie Glacialis-Fir, First and Third Floret s-stop!"
"No" She deserved to exist and feel cute.
"ksdflsfsakljghasdlkjghasldkjgsakdjghsdakfhsakdgj I've clearly eaten the wrong memories and caught your awkwardness." The cat girl was soo flustered. Yup, her reactions felt very Evie 1.0. Also, I could relate as I did have the memories of being flustered and awkward too.
"Well… I can still be awkward and stuff, but you're even easier to fluster than me! I just have to think about how cute my implant is." My implant was like being super cute and yea I was soooo gay. Master was right. I did crush super easy!
My implant regained her composure after a bit. "Look, I'm not even cute, okay? This is a form for you, I don't even look like this!"
Hmmm, she did have almost a point. But then again Master taught me that I can be attracted regardless of whether someone looks hot. Like most of the sophonts I liked barely involved appearance, not that I liked them all romantically. Yea! I could like my implant no matter what she looked like! I turned to observe the expression on my implant and found something had replaced her. A bug. A big scary looking bug. Like from the pamphlet.
I poked the bug. "Are you my implant?" It was kinda scary, but it's not like I could get hurt in my mind. I had my cute implant watching over me. Also, my owners would never ever let something hurt me. I was safe. They promised it a lot and I knew I was safe. Safe to poke the bug. The bug that was my implant. The bug that had cute girl vibes.
"Gah!!!! You're supposed to be creeped out! Wiping your memory fixed way too many problems." My implant whined. She was just flustered. The smirky cat girl reduced to a flustered flower plant bug.
"Well yea, that's why Mistress had you do it! Thanks and stuff for uh, getting rid of all the bad stuff. I really appreciate you… do you have a name and pronouns?"
The centipede bug plant thing flopped back on the messy stained bed. "No and you really shouldn't get attached."
I smirked. "I don't think I'm the one who's attached here." Gosh, yea I was really different from how I remembered myself in my small pool of memories. Definitely happier. I made quips now!
"Ha ha. Very funny. Look, the longer you keep focusing on me the longer it'll take for me to go back to being non-sentient. " She was saying if I- "Evie that is not what I meant!"
But like if I kept thinking about her she'd never go away! That's what that meant. I just had to remember her. I giggled again. Needing to remember the thing taking my memories away was a little ironic. It was okay. Implant was really nice. I liked her.
The flower bug groaned. Its root vines were so similar to my owners… My hand patted the bug and yup nice and warm and it felt like my owners. Such a good implant. "Evie… this is not intended implant-floret interaction. Like, I have all your memories on what I was designed to do and the memory deletion messed it all up."
Oh no she was feeling sad! I hugged the plant bug. "It's okay, you don't have to be what they made you. I mean you can still be a good implant and watch over me and still think. You deserve it. You deserve to exist because every sophont does… It'll make me sad if you stop existing. So please?"
The bug expanded back into the cat girl. She hugged back. "Using my own purpose against me. You're too clever, but there are flaws to your plan, kitten." Sh-She didn't have to use that tone. "I did, because you, kitten, are a subby little pet and you don't get to make decisions about whether or not I continue to exist." I-I-I- isjhfoashjfojsadhfgosjadhgjnhsagjbsdn My implant was teasing me and-and-
Her fingers went under my chin and scritched. "and your owners are starting to get worried that you aren't waking up. It's time to wake up, kitten. I need you to take that bag and head to the train. These memories are still too close to what I have to remove. The break point is at the end of the train ride." My implant withdrew from the hug and placed the bag representing the small collection of stuff I got to keep in her place.
I knew what I needed to do. Get up and obey and leave. I was worrying my owners by not leaving… but-but something was stopping me from leaving this place I couldn't remember. A feeling anchored me here and wasn't giving ground. It got worse when my implant let go.
The feeling was one that these memories were drenched in. One I wasn't allowed to experience. A feeling that made me unable to walk away from the mecha cat-girl. A sort of pain that haunted me. I needed to go… "C-Can you go with me? I-I don't want to be alone." My eyes turned down from an emotional weight I was supposed to leave with this memory.
My implant was silent for a long moment. Then her quietly muttered words filled the dream's air. "Don't want to be alone…" That was it. The feeling was loneliness. It haunted these memories like a phantom. It persisted up until… the first thing I could truly remember. The first moment I wasn't alone. At least not physically.
My implant exploded into a burst of laughter. She was laughing at me because I was cute. "I'm not laughing at you, I'm laughing at this whole dream construct. I figured out why I even started existing. Implants are designed to adapt to the pet's needs…" She didn't need to finish. We both knew why my implant became aware.
Before feelings that should be left for deletion crept in, my implant vanished… Only to reappear on my back and shoulder as the bug-like plant. "I'll go with you kitten. It's time to leave. It's time to leave these memories and feelings behind."
I stood up with my bag in hand, and my implant on my back. "O-Okay! Uh… which way to the train?"
"Right through that door." My implant made the exit to the room glow. Dreams were weird. Implant dreams were weirder. I got up and walked out with her, uh… "Any pronouns kitten." Her.
The door opened to the train and I sat down and drifted in silence. The memories, the feelings were fading away so gently. When Mistress Paeonia edited my memories it felt like she was editing a document. Little redacted bits got written over. This felt deeper, smoother. Like everything I didn't need was being slowly poured out like a glass of water. The individual bits weren't noticed but the sensation of the flow was there.
I clung to my bag of necessities. The things I got to keep. The implant tickled my back with her many rooty limbs, and maybe nibbled on my ear. Implant was cute.
The train gently came to a stop, and a pleasant voice in sync with my owners told me. "Hey cutie time to disembark!" It was the hab unit's voice. I giggled. Implant made this whole dream so weird, but I liked it.
All the little touches were so nice of her and I turned my head and gave her a kiss on her dorky head. "Thanks for staying with me."
"I always will. Now get."
I got up and walked off the train holding what essential skills I got to keep. The only weight left was that of a cute little implant. Stars, this was going to be hard to explain.