|The Transformation Story Archive||Horses and Doggies and Cats, Oh my...|
Montecello Mule Farm
Montecello road was a secondary road that led from an exit on the interstate. There was not much there at this exit, except for a gas station and a small diner. Just a few miles up the road, it went from four lanes to two and you were in the country just that quickly. If you went up the road for thirty miles or so you would eventually come to another small town, but the couple who were driving on vacation didn't know this or care if they did. Their gas was low and they were hungry. After they filled the car with gas, they went over to the diner and had lunch.
"Honey, why are we stopping here?" the woman asked the man.
"We're out of gas, dear, and I really don't know where the next station past this one is. Besides, there's a diner there and I really wanted to try this country cooking that I've heard so much about," he replied.
"Well, OK, but then we're going to stop at the factory outlet mall at the state line," she retorted.
"All right, I give," her husband said. "We'll stop there too."
They parked their Lincoln outside the door of the dinner and went in. Both of them stopped inside of the door and looked around. This place was very quaint, from the deer head on one wall, to what they thought was a horse harness hanging on the other. There were other implements that neither of them could put a name to nor guess at a use for. They didn't see the young blond woman come in from the back somewhere.
"Can I help you folks?" she asked.
"We're the Kidmans from up north," the lady told her. "I'm Jane and he's John."
"We saw your place and wanted to try the local cuisine," John told her.
"Good, good, come on in and we'll fix you right up," the young woman replied.
"Could we see a menu?" John asked her.
"Wow," she exclaimed. "Y'all aren't from around here are you? Well, don't worry about that, I'll tell you what we got and you can choose. Today's special is chili and beans. We also have meatloaf and for vegetables, we have fried okra or vegetable soup. I wouldn't try the chili unless you have a cast iron stomach, cause it's hotter than hell," she told them candidly.
"I think that I will try the meatloaf and a bowl of vegetable soup," John told her.
Jane said then, "I'll have the same also."
"You want biscuits or cornbread with that?" she asked the couple.
"I think that we'll stick with biscuits," he replied.
Within a few minutes the young woman was back with their food. She sat two glasses of a light brown liquid in front of them, and watched as they picked up the glasses unthinkingly and took a sip.
"Good Lord, what the heck is that?" John spat.
"Its iced tea, sir," she replied. "Everybody down here drinks it."
"Would you have any coffee?" John asked her. I think that I would prefer that."
"Come on honey, be a sport," Jane said. "Where's your sense of adventure?"
"Must have left it a few states back," he mumbled.
In a couple of minutes, the waitress brought back his coffee and they continued to eat. She went back to cleaning the bar telling them, "Just holler if you want anything." She stood there and tried hard to overhear what they were talking about. Things around here were so boring that anything to break the monotony was welcomed. After listening to them for a while, she went over once more.
"I couldn't help but over hear, y'all are looking for something to do?" she asked.
"Well, we really don't have to be in Atlanta till tomorrow, so we thought we'd find something to do around here," Jane replied.
"Y'all could visit the mule farm up the road. My brother runs it and he would be glad to have ya," she told the couple.
"I don't really care about seeing any mules," John replied.
"Aw, come on honey," Jane wheedled, "I bet they are kind of cute and we really don't have anything else to do. Besides, if we don't like it, we can always go on to the mall anyway."
John recognized that tone of voice before from his wife. When she got something in her head, no matter how ridiculous, he had no choice but to go along with it. They paid for their lunch, got directions and went to their car. As the waitress and owner of the small diner watched them drive away, she made a quick call to her brother. He was going to be pleased!
The couple had no trouble finding the sign and started down the dirt road to the farm. They went ever so slowly as to not damage their Lincoln in the rough drive. Finally, they pulled up in front of this old weather beaten house and got out. They heard someone yell to them from the barn.
"Howdy folks," the man in overalls yelled, "Y'all must be up to see the farm."
He walked closer as he yelled and they waved. John said, "Actually it was my wife's idea."
"Don't worry your head about it," The man said. "By the way, my name's Jack. Glad to meet ya," he said, holding out his hand for a shake. The couple couldn't get over how friendly people were around here. They talked for a bit and Jack offered to show them the barn and pasture where all the mules were. He went with them to the door to the barn and opened it. "Right in there folks," he said. "I'll go around and shoo the critters into the corral so y'all can see them."
Jane and John looked into the dark corridor, seeing light at the other end and stepped inside. They held each other's hands as they went and emerged into a small corral. It was made of cedar poles and had a hard clay floor. It reminded them of something they had seen on TV. They waited for a few minutes, when John, getting impatient, yelled, "Hey Jack, I don't see any mules!"
They heard him call back, "Just wait a minute and you will!"
John absentmindedly scratched his arm while he waited. He looked to Jane and found her doing the same thing. He hoped they hadn't gotten fleas or something on themselves. They were feeling decidedly uncomfortable and looked at each other. John saw something wrong with his wife but couldn't place it for a moment. The ears! Her ears were getting longer! He felt a tingle against his head and reached up to feel long, fuzzy ears on himself. "What the hell is going on?" he thought.
Before he could even do anything else, his fingers felt funny and then went sort of numb. The middle fingers on his hand had fused with the nail growing steadily larger. They were growing longer also. His pants suddenly ripped with a loud sound and a hairy butt with the beginnings of a tail peeked out at him. He looked up in shock to his wife standing next to him. There was a long tail, ending in a tassel, coming out from under her dress and then her dress ripped also. She stood there, speechless and paralyzed with shock, as these things were happening. John tried to say something to her but as he went to speak, his neck exploded outward and the only thing that came out was, "HEEE HAWWW!" He shook a head on a long thick neck and tried again with the same results.
Both of them were thrown forward onto what were now their front hooves as their backs and hips changed into a new shape. Jane looked down to see that her feet now ended in hooves and her legs were hairy. She tried to scream with results similar to her husband's. John felt his face begin to expand outward as if someone's huge hands were on either side of his head pulling it into a new shape. He tried to take a step and stumbled, not being fully configured to a mule yet.
Jack stood leaning on the rails of the corral laughing with glee. No matter how many times he watched this happen, it never got old for him. Hell, he was actually jealous, wondering what it might feel like. In the back of his mind he wondered if one day, he wouldn't walk through the spelled barn himself, but not for now. Jack shook his head sadly. He never regretted the money he had paid the old man for this particular spell though. It had kept him and his sister in money for a while. He looked at the new mules now standing against each other in his coral. As the transformation had included an acclimation phase also, they knew what had happened to them but were perfectly happy as mules now.
He heard a car pull up and his sister got out. He went out to her and hugged her.
"Loretta, call Bob and tell him we got a Lincoln for his chop shop, he told her.
"I guess we had another success?" she asked.
"Of course, honey. Did you ever doubt it?" he asked in return.
"Oh, and by the way," he said, "call Mr. Edwards and tell him I have the matched pair of mules he was wanting."
He watched Loretta go inside to make the calls and smiled. No one would ever find out why his farm always seemed to breed the smartest, best mules anywhere. He felt no guilt for what he did. Heck, he figured he was doing them a favor. They were old as humans and now they were about two year old mules and would age more slowly than average for the breed. And he had no doubt they would be happier. He knew that he would have. Maybe some day. He smiled.
Montecello Mule Farm copyright 2001 by Tekwolf.
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