I was cozy in my haphazardly splayed out position under the covers that sort of got tangled up on me. My bed didn't get used a lot which was weird because it felt pretty good at that moment. I felt oddly rested. I'd never felt rested. I'd process that but I was happy laying there not getting out of bed.
"Aster flower, I'm back and I brought breakfast!" Ugh. Her. Right, all that crap happened. Wait…how the shit did I just sleep? How the stars did I get into my bed?
I shot up too fast from being relaxed and my vision did that staticy thing it does when moving too fast. A doctor once told me it was because my blood pressure dropped too low for a moment when I went from fully relaxed to tightened muscles. The staticy vision is sort of common. What isn't common is when it drops extra low and you black out for a second or two, usually long enough to hit the ground painfully and wake up in pain. That happened. Right then.
Thankfully, I landed back on my bed. "Wha… oh." I pushed myself up slower that time. "Uh hey plant lady. Wait, how the fuck did I sleep?"
She smiled while holding up a small food container with my presumed breakfast. "I told you I was going to give you a class-Z xenodrug. It is for helping with sleep. Now would you like donuts? Digitalis told me to get them for you."
I squinted. Digitalis. That fucking bitch did it again. She was just screwing with me. The xeno hacker was probably laughing her ass off at showing off how much data she could collect on me. Well, screw her. I was going to learn that affini networking stuff, and I was going to snoop on her eating habits, and send the affini her favorite foods. Yea, that'll show the jerk… wait do affini even eat? Bah, I'll sort that out later. I still needed to figure out the networking thing and show her I'm the better hacker.
I cackled maniacally at my ingenious plan for revenge. It was perfect. Digitalis would rue the day she fucked with me. I stopped when I noticed the xeno giving me an odd look. Whatever, at least she's not a person. I would probably freak out if an actual human person kept breaking into my home and watching me be weird. People were awful, and I’d rather never see one in person again.
Still on my bed, I grumbled and looked down. I was in the same sports bra and gym shorts as yesterday. I was lazy with clothes and normally no one saw me. Yes, both the bra and shorts had stains. Laundry was hard, okay?
"You need to eat and-"
"Take my meds. I get it. I'm an adult and I can handle stuff on my own. I was doing just fine until you all showed up." I rightfully placed the blame for all my recent failings at her oversized planty feet. It was all their fault for everything going wrong.
She placed the container of donuts in my hand that I devoured. "From the look of things, your issues predate our arrival by a considerable amount. Are you telling me that this place was tidy, you bathed at least bi-daily, took your meds on time, drank plenty of water, got full nights' rest, saw the light of day regularly, wore clean clothes each day, and fed yourself adequately until a week ago?"
"No, but I didn't need to do all of those things. Seeing the light of day is unnecessary, not everything I need to wear needs to be clean, I already explained I slept when I needed to, and yes I ate regularly, I drink stuff as needed, sure I let the mess build up but I was gonna get to it, eventually. I've been living like this for five years. I can handle myself or could before you all arrived." I huffed and ate another donut. The stupid things were great. I needed one of those atomic compiler thingies.
"You've been struggling and barely getting by for five years to the point you likely have significant health issues. You are not okay. The condition you are currently in is unacceptable. We won't let you suffer like this anymore. You are receiving help whether or not you want it." She spoke in a very authoritative voice like my boss except sexy, feminine, and like she actually gave a shit. The stupid evil alien and its obsession with how well I care for myself was bothersome.
"Can you like leave? I ate, I got sleep. Stop breaking into my house." I complained to the creature that had all the power in this relationship of overpowered alien nanny and helpless system admin.
She sighed, ruffling her big ugly fern leaves. "Little one, I told you last night you have a vet appointment this morning and he'll be here any minute."
I tilted my head, ignoring the donut crumbs in my modest cleavage. "Why a vet? If you're concerned about my health, shouldn't you get like a doctor?"
"A vet is a doctor for little terrans like you." She condescendingly corrected me. Whatever she can use her stupid terms. The doctor was going to say a bunch of mostly useless stuff, hand me a multivitamin and tell me to leave… wait, this was my home, he'd leave. Hopefully.
I got up and walked around the thing until it stopped me. A large hand with my hormones in it hovered in front of me. I begrudgingly took the things. I knew I needed to take those, but I didn’t have to be happy she made me. Finally, she permitted me to go back to studying affini tech.
I had another notification from Digitalis waiting for me, so I brought that up while I had the technical stuff on another screen.
NetworkRoots: Morning, little one! I hope you like the donuts. Also, I wanted to let you know I restored your remote servers but at new addresses listed in the attached document. Once you move into your new habitation unit, I'll transfer them to your unit’s local network so you can keep your data close.
Oh uh, wow, Digitalis gave me my stuff back. I peered through the document and started mapping the remote servers to my server management software. It really was all here. My archive servers, that one server for when I stole cryptocurrencies, a server of funny intranet pictures, pirated games, one that was full of stolen emails and other blackmail for people I had no intention of ever interacting with but like ya know just in case.
I was happily adding it all back when I stopped. No. That absolute fucking skank bitch. How in all the stars did she find that one? I never connected to it without like fifty proxies, a very secure VPN connection, and a dozen other forms of digital obfuscation. No one should know that the server exists. I even hid it on hardware on the other side of the planet in a warehouse I verified was too incompetent to ever notice, but also afloat enough they'd never go under and lose my shit.
I buried my face in my hands and muffled a scream. Digitalis found my smut server. I had been so careful to not leave any of it on any system that anyone could trace back to me. She found it. She probably read through all of it. The evil, insidious plant probably knew about all my kinks.
"Petal, are you alright?" Cyathea asked from behind me. Fuck, she was still here.
"Shut up and go away." If Digitalis told anyone about any of my smut, I was going to murder her. I'd hack a fucking affini warship and have them open fire on her. That absolute piece of xeno plant space trash. No one was supposed to know about my hypno fetish. No one. This was why I had thousands of blackmail emails and an orbital cannon. For when people crossed the line.
I needed revenge. I needed blackmail to shut her up. Like everything else, I needed access to the entire affini network so I could dig up her dirty secrets and force her into silence. Along with, of course, taunting her with those cutesy messages, and showing off all the info I could gather in the form of disturbingly accurate gifts of her favorite foods or baring her plant ass being unable to eat, I'd just do another gift. She'd be so humiliated and scared, and with the blackmail I'd make her keep quiet about the other stuff.
I threw myself back into the documents she sent, it sent, whatever the xeno's pronoun crap sent. I don't know how long I spent studying the fascinating and horribly complex technical stuff, but Cyathea tapped me on the shoulder and spun me around before saying. "Aster dear, I'm going to step outside because your adorably tiny home can't fit the vet and I at the same time. I'll be right outside if you need me."
Sure enough, she slipped out like the oddly fluid sea of ugly ferns she was, and another plant with a bunch of tiny yellow flowers slipped in. "Hello little one." Gah, did they all have to brag about how massive they were? This one didn't sound feminine at all, sort of masculine, but with that odd alien tinge to his, their, voice. "I'm Glebionis Segetum, Ninth Bloom, he/they/it and I'll be helping make sure you are as healthy as can be. You are Aster Manning correct?"
I scratched an itch on my back. "Uh, yeah. I'm Aster um she/her… can you make this quick? I have stuff to do. Also, for the record, I hate you all and get the fuck out of my apartment." I knew they were going to keep pestering me or whatever, but I didn't have to like them. Plus, I hated all the stupid talking they were making me do. They should all communicate through messaging apps so I can block and ignore them.
"Yes, Cyathea informed me of your temperament. I'll be as quick as possible so you can get back to your fun little activities." He set down a weird plant flower device thing. "Are you scared of needles?"
I shrugged. "Uh… I dunno." I never dealt with needles, so I can't say I ever thought about it. Needles were for druggies and people who went to doctors. I was neither. Heck, I still hadn’t gone to a doctor. One came to me! Lol.
"Then probably not. Now, since Cyathea informed me you are already on a hormone prescription, what do you want out of your transition? We have a wide variety of class-G xenodrugs for those who feel dysphoric or otherwise unsatisfied in their current forms. If you can think of it, we can provide you with a prescription that'll let you be whoever you want to be."
I considered the xeno’s words. They had cosmic xeno HRT, potentially for more than just gender stuff. I thought over the wording, which was definitely easier after a night's rest. I would never admit that to Cyathea, but maybe I might ask for that class-Z thing again sometime. "What are the limits of the class-G thingies?"
"Class-Gs can do a very large number of things. The classification is by function of transitioning and transformation and it is one of the broader categories of xenodrug. Your terran HRT is a rather inaccurate solution to gender troubles, but we can get you specific effects without undesired ones. Additionally, we can do a wider variety of changes. Including ones that, pardon me if this is too uncomfortable to talk about, can set your genitals into any configuration you desire, including ones that are not found in humans." I blinked. They can do bottom surgery without the surgery. Also, uh, non-human genitals… why did my mind jump to tentacles? Oh stars, was he insinuating they could actually do that? Gross.
"So, knowing that we can provide you with anything from fur to tails to more conventional human characteristics, what do you want out of your transition? Note that if you prefer, we can help you achieve some things through surgeries as well. With some only being able to be done with surgical body mods."
I blinked. Okay, furry stuff was also on the table. I'm not a furry, but I've been on the planetary intranet. There were probably a fuck ton of people excited about that. Wait, I'm supposed to think about what I want. "Uh, I want to be like a woman, girl. Whatever. Like undo all the effects of first puberty. I want these." I poked at my baby tits. "Bigger. Uh a vagina too. Can you make me shorter?" He nodded. "Um… body hair like this stuff." I gestured to my everywhere but my head hair. "Can you get rid of it?"
I pondered a bit more… I needed something really weird. Gah! This was too sudden to hand me an IRL character creator. "Can you make my eyes glow?"
He chuckled a bit. "What color?"
Fuck. Wow. Okay. Yea. "Blue?"
"You might need a bit of ocular implantation depending on the luminosity you desire, but that's very doable. Did you also want your eyesight improved up to or beyond conventional human capabilities?" He kept adding shit. How was he expecting me to fucking figure this all out on the spot? Fucking affini jerks and their advanced tech bullshit.
"I like my glasses… can I get like ones that are fancy tech ones?"
"Very much so. Anything else? You mentioned chest size. Did you know how large you wanted them to turn out?" I wanted to scream. This was stupid and unfair. Also, really fucking awkward of a conversation to have with a xeno who fucking broke into my home at the request of another xeno fern bitch.
I looked down and then reached out with my hand to the side, trying to find a fidget thing. My hands really needed something tactile right then. I found one and went to town fiddling with it, letting me vent feelings out and ponder the question of chest size.
I held out my hands like I was groping big ass tits on myself. "Like this big."
I heard the slightly constrained laughter that made me blush. "Very doable. Was there anything else you could think of right now, or can I start with the scans?" Scans? Oh right, a doctor. I'd say this is my apartment and there was nothing to scan with, but at this point it was clear affini were basically magic and I should stop being surprised. It was like that thing about sufficiently advanced tech being basically indistinguishable from magic. Their networking crap better not be incomprehensible. I'd throw a fit. Then again, I was piecing it together… sort of.
"Scan away doc, I have things to do."
He had me lie down on the bed and stuck planty needles in me and other plant tech crap. He hummed a very different and yet oddly affini tune as they scanned me. I think one of them was a brain scan.
They made a very fake and yet still totally genuine sounding throat clear noise before saying. "So Miss Manning, how often did you normally eat before we arrived?"
I groaned from my position on my bed. "No Miss Manning crap. I'm Aster, and I dunno like every two to three days or something. I did it whenever I remembered or started feeling lightheaded."
"I assume then, that in your state of extreme starvation that you rarely experience hunger?" Oh, it was calling me anorexic or something. The prick. How dare it come in here and call me out on my eating habits! I already had a stupid alien woman thing doing that.
I grumbled. "No, I don't, and stop looking at me with that pity crap. I'm fine."
"You very much aren't miss Aster, but don't worry we'll get you back up to perfect physical health in no time. As for mental health, I'll have to wait until I do your psychological examination." He sounded oh so confident in that. I guess every affini did. They were a bunch of hyper advanced space things looking down on us pathetic mortals.
Still, he was talking about mental health, which mine was perfectly normal. Definitely 100% perfect mental health. "Whatever. How long until you're done? This is taking forever and I have things to do."
"Not much longer, but your health is important, flower."
"You sound like my doctor." I said sarcastically. Then again, could plants really be doctors?
He quirked an eyebrow. "Am I not?"
Sure, I guess the thing was my doctor. "Whatever." If I didn't have needles in me, and if I wasn't absolutely sure it would stop me, I'd already have gotten up and started studying again on my computer. Honestly, it was more self-restraint than I could muster yesterday. Probably, definitely, has nothing to do with being on my meds, well fed, and well rested. No correlation there. Absolutely none. Also, had nothing to do with whatever that machine plugged into me did that made me feel less bleh than I had in forever.
Thankfully, he finally unhooked me from it all and I sat up and stretched. My muscles all felt a little less tired and weak. I was still a scrawny bitch, but I felt like I had a bit more energy. "What did that thing do to me?"
Glebi-something patted me on the head, which I allowed because… whatever. Shut up. "I examined both your current and optimal levels for various vitamins, minerals, and neurotransmitters, among other biological factors. The device brought those up to where you should be and with the readout, we can ensure your individual dietary needs are met and provide what other supplements you need to be healthy."
Okay, I guess that made sense or something. Stupid plant. I went to hop off the bed and back to my computer when he stopped me with his big ass hand. "Miss Aster, I still need to do your psychological evaluation. Mental health is just as important as physical health."
"I am mentally healthy! I don't need a stupid therapist plant, okay? Just let me go, you stupid thing." I tried to slip past, and he grabbed me gently and put me back on the bed. "I fucking hate you all! Get the fuck out and stop ruining my life!" I started biting his hand. I also may have hissed. Look, I was weird. I knew I was weird. If I could move against its vines, I would have been thrashing.
"I'll be done in just a moment." He placed something on my forehead and a moment later…
I mentally roused from something. There was noise… intelligible noise. "-solutely adorable." It said. My eyes drifted up and found the same affini jerk who wouldn't let me go back to my computer. "You should feel lucid now, little one. Your mental health examination is done and you can go back to your computer if you'd like."
I narrowed my eyes that stayed trained on the fucker as I slowly got up and made my way over. I was waiting the whole time for it to stop me or something, but I sat down in my spot and they just smiled at me warmly while packing up the plant things. "So no more health stuff? I'm done and never have to see you again?"
"Provided everything goes well, you shouldn't need to see me again. It was a delight meeting you, miss Aster. Your case worker has the recommended xenodrug list, including your specific class-G blend. I hope for the best and I'd love to hear from you again." He flowed out my terran sized doorway. I flipped him off as he left, the fucker.
I turned around and ignored the other one coming in. I'd been away from my desk for way too long. It occurred to me that since they were also going to force me to move in a few days. I needed to finish Digitalis' access node thing before I was in another building. Gah, now there was a time pressure and these stupid affini kept interrupting me.
The case worker affini just said. "I'm going to go fetch your class-G and some of these other recommended xenodrugs and we can discuss them and your mental health needs when I get back, okay?"
"Get out of my apartment." I didn't even put any effort into it. Kinda useless too, plus I was busy focusing on important actual things like learning everything about a very alien intranet.
Actually going over this I was sort of piecing it all together, vaguely, the big thing was I clearly needed to know the affini language and numbering system, since their addresses were in some weird nonbinary numbering system with text characters that my computer didn't even have. I needed new software to handle this. The problem was that I was decent at pulling apart code, but my limits were a little past scripting on the coding end. I mostly just stuck to programs others made. But the planetary network was gone and if I needed software, I had to use… the overnet.
I looked over at the web browser icon that could access it the pleb way. Unfortunately, I'd have to navigate through their overly simplified UI's to find what I needed to bypass them. I sighed and went in. The search engine was more on point than terran ones. A surprising feat considering the terran ones had centuries of refining and several decades of data on me. Well, I did intentionally obfuscate a lot of my data and blocked a fuck ton of trackers. Some hyper paranoid dude built my browser I found on some obscure forum. I pulled it apart and found it legit and used it for years.
My operating system was also not the normal consumer grade ones, since my work gave me access to a bunch of fun proprietary tech. I had a lot of applications in sandboxed VMs simply because they couldn't run natively on my OS and also because it was more secure. I had caught a few other hackers trying to break in, mostly anti-government ones, since technically I worked with government stuff through the corp. I never reported them because yea, the government sucks, but I needed my job. I'd just send them half sympathetic, half condescending messages and then borked their systems to teach them a lesson. Digitalis was the one who got in. The one who vexed me.
I found an auto translator and a few other applications that I had to take the long route of making sure there wasn't malware with this affini crap, not that they needed malware with their ability to waltz onto my computer whenever.
The fern tapped me on the shoulder lightly before whirling me around again. Spinny chairs were great. "Go away." I mumbled.
The same sexy plant woman who was too big for my tiny, cozy apartment sat there menacingly. "Oh, did you not want this xenodrug that would, let me check the notes… undo the effects of your first puberty, give you glowing blue eyes, a very feminine appearance and figure, make you a bit shorter, and give you rather large mammaries?"
Fuck, she had me there. It was almost hard to believe that she wasn't lying out her ass, but with her being very upfront and honest, even if she's a bitch, it was hard to doubt her. "Okay, fine. Also that about that hair growing stuff? You said you'd fix this." I held up my very long, but also much much shorter than it used to be, hair.
I should slap that smug smile she got on her face right off. "Well petal, I brought some of that too. As long as you take the vitamin supplements with your meals, the new growth should be healthier and more lush than the hair you currently have that grew in while you were malnourished." She was tempting me with even more awesome looking obnoxiously long hair. The bitch.
"Fine, we can talk." I folded my arms under my chest before realizing my hands needed something to do. I turned back and grabbed a fidget thing.
"I'm glad to see your attention span has improved." Oh, this plant was going to rue the day it met me.
Wait, I never got the plant's pronouns and shit. I only knew her name was Cyathea because of Digitalis's message. "Yo plant bitch, you never gave me your name and pronouns."
She frowned. "Aster, first that's a very rude way to address someone." I flipped her off. "Second, you are absolutely right, and I am so sorry. I am Cyathea Brownii, Fourth Bloom, she/they."
"Yea, Digitalis mentioned your name. What's the fourth bloom thing about?" They kept adding it to their names. Affini were weird.
Cyathea ruffled her hideous leaves. "We are getting off topic here, but the bloom refers to how many times an affini has rebloomed. A process which we undergo as a soft reboot of our life cycle. In order to not die of old age, one must rebloom every 100-300 terran years. We undergo changes each time, from minor changes to practically being an entirely new entity and everything in between. Now let's focus if you want your medications."
I wanted to pry more because she basically just said they were all biologically immortal, but I deserved long hair, glowing eyes, and big tiddies. "Fine, say your dumb stuff, give me my meds, and let me go back to my work."
"Aster flower, these things are important. You have a number of psychological issues, including your agoraphobia, autism, anxiety, depression, asocial tendencies, insomnia, and attention issues. You need help and we can provide it, but we need to talk first."
I didn't have asocial tendencies or agoraphobia or depression… Fuck her. "Just talk or something."
The plant had an obviously sad expression before saying. "A number of xenodrugs were recommended to help with some of the issues you're having. We have a class-Z that'll help you sleep that'll need to be taken at night, a class-E that can help with your anxiety and agoraphobia, a class-C for your asocial tendencies, and a class-A for your attention issues. All of that would be alongside the class-G blend for your transition."
I rolled my eyes. "Oh and nothing to fix the autism?" Like my parents never tried that before. I sarcastically rolled my eyes again.
"Autism can cause you issues, but it is a perfectly natural and normal variance in terran minds. It is not something to be cured, just acknowledged and accounted for when dealing with various other issues you face."
I just focused on the fidgety knickknack in my hands. The stupid plant was pretending to know and care. It didn't know me. It didn't know what I had to go through just to be able to live on my own like this. I lucked out getting into IT, which let me live at home and not talk to anyone. I did my best. I tried so hard and so what if I didn't go outside, or talk to people, or eat every day or do my laundry or clean up? I managed to survive on my own. Isn't that enough? Why did these stupid plants keep acting like I needed to do better? Why couldn’t I just be good enough? Why was I never good enough? Why wouldn't people just leave me alone? Hadn't I suffered enough?
I had a few tears leak as I sat in my spot, in my chair. The corner of my lip did that twitching bit it did when I got really sad, but was trying not to cry. I really needed her to shut up. If she didn't say anything or do anything, it'd pass and I could shove it all down again.
"Aster, do you need a hug?" Her tone was just so full of obvious sympathy and acknowledgement of the feelings I was trying to make go away. The bitch was supposed to stay quiet. She wasn't supposed to be here. I was supposed to be alone.
My emotions collapsed on me. An awful wretched cry of pain slipped out and kept slipping out. Tears streamed down my face and my body shook. My breathing became erratic. My thoughts drowned out by emotion and my physical reaction to said emotion. I was living sorrow and, in that moment, unable to be anything else.
The awful plant woman pulled me into a tight hug. I collapsed into it." Shhhh, little one. It's okay. Everything will be alright. You are safe and cared for. Just let it all out. You don't need to carry that hurt anymore." Her words spoken as she pet my head.
She patiently held me the whole time, even as I struggled at first. I was stuck leaking emotion in a messy fashion all over the place. Helpless in the arms of an alien. It went on and on. Cycles of hyperventilating in between gasping sobs. My face contorted into a hideous display of misery. Raw emotion held me in a vice grip for so long. Kindness and care kept ripping open the wounds of my heart.
After I bled my heart into the embrace of the affini, it left me hollow and limp in her vines. She prodded me for interaction, but I just couldn't. No words, no movement. I was too exhausted. I was spent.
The only thing left to me was feeling bad and thinking. It hurt worst to know I was wasting valuable time feeling sorry for myself instead of tinkering with affini tech. I'd never get back at Digitalis at this rate. I was failing. I had to do something. I tried, but beyond small shifting and darting my eyes around, my body failed to act how I needed it too. The worst part was it didn't feel like my body wasn't responding. It felt like I could easily stand up and walk over, but I simply wasn't trying hard enough. As if I was intentionally lying here no matter how hard I tried to do the opposite.
"Petal." The word spoken with ample concern. The affini had shifted me and I could see her eyes. "I can see you looking around and feel you trying to move. I'd like to give you something to help you out but I'd like to confirm you're cognizant and okay with it." Unfolding from her body were two flowers, a red and a blue one each with needles. "Can you look at the red one for a few seconds and then the blue?" I was stuck and decided to follow along. "Good to know you're with me petal. Now, I'd like to give you a mix of these two to break you out of that state. If you want that hold your sight on the blue flower, otherwise look at the red one."
I needed to think about it for a second. I felt clear minded, but I was having doubts. Like she sounded like she was telling the truth but I was scared. I didn't know what they did. What if they hurt me? What if they made things worse?
I tried to move. If I tried extra hard this time surely it'd work. It didn't… I didn't try hard enough.
"Little Aster, do you want me to try helping you? It's okay to let yourself be helped sometimes." She didn't have to say that. I know. I just should be able to move without help. I-I can't be that helpless. I'm supposed to be the best hacker. I'm supposed to be better than Digitalis. How am I supposed to be good at anything if I couldn't muster the willpower to move.
I-I gave up. I looked at the blue flower. "Alright flower." Needles protruded and painlessly went into my arms.
The feeling of touch magnified and felt warm and flush and I sort of liked it. "Ah, w-what did you give me? It's um sort of good feeling and that's weird because it's not supposed to do that right?" I made the mistake of shifting in her vines and gasped at the sudden rush of pleasant heat. "Why do I like this and um can you uh touch me please? Why did I say that?"
A vine came down and shushed me, while a few more ran over me at my request. I didn't know why I asked. It just sort of came out. She noticed me squirming to the medley of soft noise inducing touches. "Flower, I gave you a class-A to heighten sensations to help provide the shock and a class-D to help you let things just slip out. Together they loosened you up and jolted you back to movement, but well." She ran a vine down my exposed stomach. "They also have other effects. Would you like the counter agents, or would you rather I touch you like you asked?"
Clearly, what she gave me was fucking with my head. I hated her, after all. So I said the obvious thing. "Touch me more." Wait fuck. I was supposed to ask for the counteragents. I mean, I enjoyed being touched this way bu- I gasped. She was running soft vines along my exposed skin and gah. This shouldn't feel this good. I shouldn't be asking for this.
She only continued a minute and after which I begged for a bit more before she injected me with something else. "Sorry petal, I want to play more too but you are under the influence."
My sense of touch went back to normal, and I paused for a moment before scrambling out of her grasp. "I-I… Don't do that again!"
"I won't, and I only did so because you asked." How dare she use my own words against me! "The class-D lowered your inhibitions a bit, and it helps you say what you really want behind all the thoughts of what you should say."
I blushed. She said that was all what I wanted deep down. No, she had to be wrong. I wasn't some needy begging thing. That wasn't me at all! Clearly, she had to be lying about the effects. I'd never act like that.
She had a patient grace as I thought everything over. "Should we discuss what caused that episode, or would you rather talk about your prescriptions?"
The word came out of my mouth a little too fast. "Prescriptions." I definitely didn't want to relive any of that. It was all just emotion, anyway. Not much to talk about with feelings. You just feel them and then you ignore them.
"As you wish flower. I listed off the recommended prescribed xenodrugs before. The goal for us here is to get you to be able to take care of yourself properly as you aren't interested in domestication. At the bare minimum the prescribed class-A should help you pull your attention away as needed. It's not the intended use but a clever affini and sophont discovered that it could do just that. It'll leave your senses heightened, particularly touch, but not as much as the one I had you on just now. That would be a problem for your stimulation sensitivities tied to your neurodivergence but you live a rather insular lifestyle so that shouldn’t affect you particularly strongly."
"Uh…" Okay, she lost me part way through that. "It'll help me focus? I already focus fine. I can focus on things for like days."
The affini shook her head. "That is hyperfixation, which isn't under your control."
"Look I don't think that class-whatever is going to help much. And the others… I don't even know anything about them. Send me like an article on them and I'll look it over. Talk over, give me the…"
"The class-G for your transition and the rapid hair growth supplement to restore what was trimmed off?" She helpfully provided.
I moved my hair over my shoulder so I didn't sit on it. Then I plopped into my rightful throne of technological control. "Yea those. I got stuff to do and that whole… thing took up valuable time."
Her vine stopped me from spinning around. "Aster, we barely discussed any of your prescriptions, and we both know you aren’t going to focus long enough to read anything I send you."
"You're making a really big deal out of all of this. I'm not interested in those other drugs. I'm mentally healthy and they aren't needed." I crossed my legs and realized I lost my fidget thing. I started looking around for it, slowly growing more panicked.
She held up the fidget thing in one vine and I grabbed it. "You call spontaneous breakdowns followed by a period of being unable to move or talk, healthy?" Wow the stupid xeno was trying to use that against me.
"That doesn't normally happen. That happened because you had to go and run your mouth off. If you hadn't I would have gotten over it before any break down occurred. You are the problem. I would have been fine if you weren't here." I pointed an accusing finger at her.
A raised eyebrow accompanied a look of 'I don't believe you'. "And how exactly would you have dealt with that if I wasn't here?"
I leaned back in my chair and pulled my legs up in front of me to shield me from the big judgy alien. "I got emotional, and I just needed to ignore that as much as possible until it went away. Like I do all the time. It's normal. It works."
"That's… Aster you are an intelligent young woman, how can you believe that repressing your feelings is in any way an acceptable form of dealing with them?" There she goes judging me again. I swear I'll get my revenge on her too. The xeno jerk calling me stupid.
"Of course it's acceptable, what else am I supposed to do with them? You just saw what not ignoring them looked like. How is that better? I was nonfunctional. I can function with repression. And I wouldn't even need to repress shit if you let me work and didn't ask me a bunch of awful questions you stupid alien ass."
She groaned and muttered something in an unintelligible language. "That is just another form of repressing your feelings. The distraction then causes you to neglect your own care. Aster, you said that you did not want to be domesticated, but if you won't let me help you become functioning that will happen."
This fucking alien piece of stupid crap bullshit fern. I threw my fidget thing across the apartment and trudged over to my bed. I fell face first into a pillow and screamed. Everything was wrong and broke because of these stupid affini. I was fine. Why couldn't she see that? I hated her and her stupid species of evil awful plants. She was going to enslave me into being a pet because I wouldn't take her stupid drugs.
I pulled myself out long enough. "Fucking leave. I hate you. Get out of my home you ugly ass fern."
"No. If you need time to calm down, take it but I am not leaving you to your self-destructive urges while you're in very poor physical and mental health."
I threw curses at her, and a pillow before curling up on my bed. "Let me live my life…"
"Flower, I want you to be able to live your life. Your best life. Leaving before you can would be leaving you to waste away as you had done under the Accord. You deserve to thrive and grow into the beautiful flower I know you can be. I'm just having a hard time seeing how that will happen better with you as an independent rather than with an owner. Show me. Let me start you off on something to help, even in a low dose, and we can work together on the rest later."
I mulled it over. I didn't want to be a pet. I just didn't want to take her stupid drugs. Not after what she made me do before. I didn't trust her with those, but I also really really didn't want to be a pet. It had been what? A handful of hours awake and I had already run through a gauntlet of emotions.
With a dead tired voice I mumbled. "Fine give me the A thing just don't make me a pet. And give me the G and hair thing."
She patted me on the head and I didn't have the energy to swat it away. "Alright little one. Thank you for trusting me. I only have your best intentions in mind." She slipped a needle into me and then another. Just two light pokes. Then she placed some pills and a bottle of water in my hand. "Those are a mix of the hair supplements and a few other vitamin supplements. Once you take them I'll run out and get you lunch while you spend some time on your computer, alright?"
My sheets felt different. Her voice sounded different. Everything felt… sharper. Crisp. I was aware. The touch was the biggest difference of them all. I downed the vitamins and such and then got up. The color of everything in my poorly lit apartment was more vibrant.
I made my way over to my computer as the affini bid me farewell to pick up lunch. My fidget thing I threw away was right back in my seat. I picked it up. Fiddled with it and dove right back into the weeds of affini networking.