SiasfL - Stranger in a strangely familiar Land
Act 2 - Time Apart

Chapter 5 - Coping With A Changed World

© 2002 - 2005 Christian "Nameless" Schimkowitsch

Sarah's eyes fluttered open. A stray beam from the rising sun had finally found her face and woken her up. She turned her head and stared off into space for a while. Suddenly an urgent need made itself known. She threw off the thin covers and sprinted to the bathroom. She made it in time; she yanked open the toilet seat and began to empty the contents of her stomach into the bowl. After a few minutes her by-then long empty stomach finally settled down. She rinsed her mouth and washed the tears out of her cheek fur.

Sarah returned to the bed and buried her head in a pillow, savoring the last remains of Chris' scent. His scent was so faint that she couldn't be quite sure if it was really there or only in her imagination. It still calmed her. After a while she dozed off again.

Sarah woke up again a short while later. She was not sleepy any more, but it was still too early to get up. She stayed in bed and began to think about her future. After a while she decided that she would call the number the FBI had given her to find out if there were any news about Chris. She decided that she would leave after lunch. She still had to do a lot to turn her new apartment into a home. A home for her... and her family. Suddenly she knew that she would keep her kit, that she would have a family. Sarah closed her eyes and prayed that Chris would be there to share their lives.

"Good morning, Sarah."

"Good morning." Sarah padded up to her mother, opened the cupboard and began to search for her mug.

Her mother smiled at her and commanded "Sit down. What would you like for breakfast?"

Sarah gave her a grateful smile and sat down "Thanks mum. Coffee and toast, please."

Her mother brought Sarah the requested items and joined her at the table. She watched her daughter for a minute before she asked "How are you today?"

"Not good, but better. I had the morning sickness again... Apart from that I'm fine. I miss Chris..."

"I know. I wish there was something I could do..." Jane gave her daughter's paw a gentle squeeze.

"Thank you, mum."

"What do you want to do today?"

"Ummm..." Sarah considered for a moment before she asked "I'll call that FBI agent. If there are no news about Chris... Would you mind if I left right after lunch? I still have a million things to do..."

"That's ok, Sarah. I would be happy if you stayed longer, we had hardly any time together, but I can understand."

"Thank you." They sat in silence for a minute. Finally Sarah blurted out "I'll keep the kit."

"What? Oh." Jane beamed at her daughter "I am glad to hear that. I... I really hope Chris comes back."

"So do I, mother, so do I." Her eyes filled with tears.

"I... Don't hesitate to call us, Sarah. You know we will help you in any way we can."

"Thank you."

Sarah packed her things. When she was done, she called the number the fox from FBI had given her. They did not have any news on Chris. She spent the rest of the morning with her family. They chatted, mostly about Sarah's new job. No one brought up the painful topics of her recent divorce or Chris' disappearance. Sarah felt a lot better afterwards, if nothing else, she knew that she could count on her family, at least most of them. Her second brother, William, had called once, but he had not wanted to talk to her.

After lunch Alan helped her carry her things to the car. They all said goodbye and Sarah turned her car towards Columbus, Ohio.

# # # # #

The door to the infirmary room opened and Dr. Gonzales entered "Hello, Flora."

The female wolf looked up at the male wolf. Her ears were lowered and her voice was almost a whine "Hello, doctor."

"How is out patient?"

"No change, doctor. He is still unconscious." Her worried eyes flickered to the still figure on the bed next to her chair "Shouldn't he have woken up?"

"Yes, he should." He scratched his chin and considered their human patient "On the other paw, it is quite possible for someone who has come that close to dying to stay unconscious for a while. I wouldn't worry yet."

Flora looked up at him, somewhat reassured by this "Ok."

"At the moment all we can do is to keep him alive and as healthy as possible." He waved at the tubes connected to the human "How is he?"

"His vital parameters are reasonably normal. At least by our standards, we don't really know what the norm for his species is."

"Ok." He accepted the chart from Flora and studied it for a minute. He studied Flora's face for a long moment before he added "There is another possibility, of course."


"Xevo has been known to put some victims into a vegetative state."

"What?" Flora whined "You mean he might not wake up at all?"

"It is possible. It happens only rarely, but we can't rule out this possibility until he wakes up. He might wake up in the next few minutes or he could stay like this for the rest of his life."

"No! Oh God, please not!" The blood drained from Flora's face. She buried her face in her paws "And I did this to him..."

"His brain activity looked pretty normal, so I do have some hope that he will wake up soon, but we won't know until he does. I'll scan him again tomorrow."

"Yes, doctor."

He looked at his watch "Your shift ends in half an hour, get some rest and sleep."

She lowered her head "Yes, I know. But doctor... I really want to be there for him..."

"You won't do him any good if you make a mistake because you are too tired to think clearly." He considered her for another minute "If you want to, we can arrange to bring a bed here, so you can sleep in this room."

Flora jumped up and hugged the male wolf "Thank you, doctor, thank you."

# # # # #

Sarah pulled into the parking lot, found an empty space close to the entrance and killed the engine. Her head throbbed; the four hour drive had taken a lot out of her. She rested her head on the wheel for a minute before she got out of the car. She picked up as many of her bags as she could reasonably carry, locked the car and went inside. It took two more trips before she had all her things in the apartment.

When all her stuff was finally in the apartment, Sarah closed the door, put down all the bags and staggered into the bedroom. She flopped onto the bed and lay still for several minutes.

After a while Sarah's headache retreated a little and she forced herself to get up again. She swallowed an aspirin and headed into the kitchen. Sarah didn't feel much like cooking, so she grabbed a ready meal from the freezer and put it in the microwave. She drank some water while she waited for the food to heat. Suddenly she remembered that pregnant females weren't supposed to take any drugs without consulting a doctor. There was nothing she could do about the aspirin she had already taken, though. Sarah resolved to consult a doctor as quickly as possible, both to confirm her pregnancy and to ask about such things.

The apartment was uncomfortably warm. There was nothing she could do about it, however, it was even hotter outside and the apartment didn't sport an A/C. Since she was alone and didn't expect anyone, she stripped down to her underwear.

Sarah picked up the phone and dialed Zig Zag's private number. She got the answering machine, but that was fine with her. She left a message that she was back in Columbus and that she would be in the office on Monday. She hung up and went back to the kitchen to eat her dinner. When she was sated, Sarah had a long and relaxing shower.

Sarah watched TV for a while. During one of the many breaks for commercials, she decided to call her friend.

The phone was answered after a few rings "Hello, Marsha Besum speaking."

"Hello Marsha! It's me, Sarah."

"Hello, Sarah!"

"I just wanted to tell you that I'm back from my holiday."

"Ok. So, did you have a good holiday?"

"Well... yes and no."

"Ummm... what happened? Things didn't work out with your new boyfriend? Or something else?"

"I... I don't want to talk on the phone, ok? We can get together in a few days, then I'll tell you. Ok?"

"Alright. How about tomorrow?"

"I... I still have to unpack and stuff... I don't think I have time tomorrow..."

"Awww... why don't I come over and help you?"

Sarah considered the offer for a few seconds. On the one paw she didn't really feel like company, on the other paw, Marsha had helped her a lot and she realized she had just lit her friend's curiosity. And she realized that not being alone all day might be nice after all "Would you? I think I'd like that..."

"When should I be over? Is eleven ok?"

"Yeah, that's fine."

"Do you want me to pick up anything for lunch?"

"Hmmm... yes, that would be great. I only bought a few frozen meals, no real food."

"Ok. I'll find something." Sarah could almost hear the grin on her friend's muzzle "I'll cook something nice for us. I think you could stand to be spoiled a little..."

"Thank you."

"See you tomorrow, then."


A few minutes later the phone rang and Sarah picked it up "Sarah Carolinae."

"Hi, this is Alice!"

"Hello Alice." Suddenly Sarah realized what had been nagging at her for the last few hours "I'm really sorry, I know I should have called you earlier..."

"That's ok Sarah. Don't worry about it. I understand that you have bigger problems... How are you doing?"

"Ummm... ok I guess... well, not really good, but I'm holding up."

"I see. If there is anything I can do..."

"Thank you."

"I almost jumped out of my fur when several FBI agents showed up at my doorstep and started asking about you and Chris."

"I know I should have called you..."

Alice cut her off "Don't worry about that, Sarah. They were nice enough; they even let me try to call you to confirm their story before I had to tell them anything. I tried to reach you but I could only get your parents. They told me that Chris has been abducted. I did my best to help the FBI. I hope that is ok with you?"

"Yes. I really miss him. If they can't find him..." Sarah sobbed once.

"I'll pray for him."

"Thank you." Sarah found a tissue and blew her nose.

"I took them up to the lodge and showed them around. They seemed quite pleased when they found some of his hairs and other things. I don't know how much it will help them to find him, but I did what I could."

"Thank you."

"I really wish I could help you two..." They were silent for a long moment. Trying to change the topic, Alice confided "Martin and I haven't had any success with our little project yet. But the trying sure is nice." The words were out of her muzzle before she realized that talking about this topic might not be the best idea when Sarah had just lost her lover. Still, she was a little surprised by the vehemence of Sarah's reaction. She couldn't see her friend, but the noises were enough to tell her that Sarah was crying bitterly. "Are you ok?" The only answer was more heartbreaking sobbing.

It took Sarah a few minutes to calm down enough to be able to talk again.

"I'm sorry, Sarah. I didn't realize..."

"It's ok, Alice. I know you didn't want to hurt me. It's only... whenever I think about Chris..."

"I understand. I'm sorry."

Sarah made a strangled noise that was half sob and half laugh "We also had fun trying. Only... we succeeded." Sarah sobbed once more.

"Yes?" It took Alice a moment to connect the dots "You are pregnant?"


"From Chris?"


"That's impossible... Or?"

"I thought so as well. I'll visit a doctor next week to make sure, but I am certain that I am pregnant from Chris."

"Are you sure it wasn't George? Sometimes it can take a while before a femme notices it..."

"No. I did have a period after the last time I had sex with George. It has to be Chris."

"I see. I... ummm... Given the circumstances, I don't quite know if congratulations are in order..."

"I don't really know either. But I have decided to keep it."

"Oh. Ok."

They chatted for another minute more before Sarah begged off and hung up.

Sarah unpacked a few things, but she felt quite exhausted and she went to bed early. She did one more thing before she fell asleep, however, and that was to frame a picture of her and Chris and put it on her nightstand.

# # # # #

Sarah opened the door "Hello, Marsha!"

"Hi!" Marsha entered and embraced her friend for a long moment. Then she followed Sarah into the kitchen and put the foodstuffs she had brought into the fridge. Marsha turned to her friend and asked "So, how can I help you?"

"Let's talk first; I was just about to take a break anyway. Do you want anything to drink?"

"Yes, it's really hot outside. Whatever you have..."

"Orange juice ok?"

"Sure." Sarah fetched two glasses and filled them. She handed one of them to her friend and headed for the living room, where she flopped down on the couch.

Marsha followed her and sat down next to her. She studied her squirrel friend for a minute before she asked "So, what happened on your holiday?"

Sarah was silent for a long moment before she began her story "I stayed at Alice's lodge, as planned. It was on the first day, late on Saturday evening. The weather had turned really nasty when there was a knock on the door. A nude male stood outside."

"You let him in?"

"Yes. The lodge is in the middle of nowhere, I simply couldn't leave him outside to freeze to death. I did have my pistol ready, however. Not that I would have needed it, he didn't give me any problems. I let him stay the night. And then he stayed longer; he didn't really have anywhere else to go. We got to know each other better and..."

Marsha's eyebrows rose "You slept with him?"

"Yes." Sarah got up and fetched the picture from her nightstand "Here. His name is Chris."

Marsha stared at the picture "What? He's wearing a mask, isn't he?" Sarah shook her head "This is a joke..."

"No, Marsha, that is really him. He is a human."

Marsha stared at the picture, at Sarah and at the picture again "I... I thought they were just... a myth..."

"He is real enough. He is from a parallel dimension or something. Where he comes from we, that is furs, are a myth. He didn't have any idea how he got here or how to get back."

"I... ummm... this is... strange... fantastic..."

"I know, I still have trouble wrapping my mind around it. If I didn't have the pictures and several other furs had not met him as well, I would think that it was all just a dream. Anyway, he is real." They were silent for a long moment before Sarah went on "We spent most of my holidays together. We got to be very good friends... friends and more... I... I love him."

Marsha couldn't quite suppress a grin "So you didn't waste any time getting over George... Good." Then she got more serious "What happened? Why isn't this...? Chris here?"

"He was abducted three days ago."


"The FBI is looking for him..."


"And what's more..." Sarah patted her belly "I'm pregnant."

Marsha's jaw dropped "You're?!?" She pointed at the picture "From him?"


Marsha shook her head "I can't believe this." She studied Sarah's face for a minute "You aren't joking, are you?"

"No. I'm serious, really serious."

"Oh... I don't know what to say. This is terrible." She scooted closer to Sarah and embraced her. They sat like this for several minutes.

Marsha cooked lunch while Sarah continued to unpack her things. They ate lunch. Marsha stayed for another two hours afterwards and helped getting the apartment ready.

At some point Sarah brought out the sealed bag "Chris used this towel an hour before he was kidnapped. His scent is still on it." She opened the bag, inhaled his scent and passed the bag to Marsha.

Marsha sniffed the towel several times and sealed the bag once more "He smells really strange. Not bad, just weird. Just not at all like any species I know."

"I miss him." Sarah accepted the bag and put it away carefully.

# # # # #

Flora and a male wolf maneuvered the bed with their unconscious patient into the examination room.

Dr. Gonzales turned to them and asked "How is he?"

"No change, doctor. His heartbeat and breathing are regular, all his vital stats are normal."

"Good." He considered their patient for a moment and commanded "Get him ready for the brain scan."

"Yes, doctor." They transferred their patient to the examination bed. The male nurse lifted the human's head off the pillow and Flora pulled the helmet over his head. It took them a few minutes to attach all the electrodes and position them to Dr. Gonzales' satisfaction. Then they lowered a metal cover over the human's head and stepped back.

The doctor started the scan and they settled down to wait. Flora stared at the covered figure and fidgeted nervously. When the first scan appeared on the screen, she turned to the doctor. She didn't know enough to know what it meant; apart from the fact that the active red areas of the brain meant that the human was at least not dead. She thought the active areas were bigger than when they had scanned him two days ago. She hoped that this was a good sign.

She watched as the active areas changed a little as electric pulses stimulated his nerves and a previous dark area lit up for a second. A tiny noise caught her attention and she turned to look at their patient. She wasn't really sure what had happened, if anything, but she couldn't shake the feeling that something had. She stood up and approached the bed. A moment later she exclaimed "He moved his hand!"

"Interesting." The doctor considered the images on the screen for a moment and turned to Flora "The brain activity looks good."

"Really?!?" Flora's tail began to wag happily.

"Yes. It is much closer to regular sleep than before."

"You mean he'll wake up soon?"

"It is possible, but not sure. The change in brain activity is a good sign, as is the fact that he moved his hand, but we won't know for sure until he actually wakes up. We also have to consider that while his brain is similar to ours, there are also marked differences, so we can't be sure if the scans actually say what we think they do."

"Ok. Understood, doctor." Flora looked less happy but still a lot more hopeful than before.

# # # # #

Sarah pulled into the ZZ Studio's parking lot later than she wanted to. The morning sickness had been worse than before and it had taken her a long while to get over it. She was still one of the first furs there "If I remember correctly and if they didn't change the schedule, they should have finished shooting sometime last week. Most actors must have taken a few days off." Sarah passed Zig's office and looked in. Zig Zag was in. She knocked on the doorframe to announce herself.

Zig looked up "Hello, Sarah! Good to see you."


"Come in and tell me about your holiday."

"Give me a minute, Zig; I want to carry this to my office first."


"Zig, do you mind if I nibble on something while we talk? I ummm... couldn't keep my breakfast down earlier..."

"No, go ahead... Are you ill, Sarah?"

"No, I don't think so." Sarah gave her a wan smile "It's just Morning Sickness."

"Ok..." Zig's eyes widened "Wait... does that mean what I think it does?"

"I... I think so. I'll probably head over to the clinic to make sure, either today or tomorrow."

"Ok. So I take it you had an interesting holiday..." Zig noticed the troubled look on Sarah's face "Is that 'interesting good' or 'interesting bad'?" When Sarah didn't answer right away, Zig's eyes narrowed "Were you raped?"

"No. Not at all." Sarah ate another bite from her sandwich "I met a fantastic male and... well, the usual happened. He was really nice. Only... he was abducted a few days ago."

"Oh. Ow. I'm sorry, Sarah. Can... Is there anything I can do to help?"

"Thank you, but no." Sarah proceeded to tell Zig her story. Very soon she got to the point where Chris showed up at her doorstep. She handed Zig a picture of him and leaned back. She watched her boss and thought wryly "I really should get used to see a fur's eyes get that big."

"That's him? I... I..."

"I know, it is kind of unbelievable, but he really is from another world." Zig shook her head several times. After a bit Sarah went on with their story. She didn't go into a lot of intimate detail of their lovemaking, but she gave plenty of hints.

"He sounds like a really good lover, doesn't he?"

"Yes, Zig." Sarah smiled "I bet you'd make a killing selling the movie... Provided there was one, of course."

"Good for you. Hmmm... I really hope that he comes back..." She grinned at Sarah "Do you think he'd like a job here?"

"No. Really not. Besides..." Sarah gave her boss a nasty smile "As much as I like you Zig, I'd have to claw out your eyes if you try to get him into bed with anyone else."

"Ouch. Understood." Zig returned her smile "So you're telling me I'd have to make that offer to you as well..."

"No." Sarah said firmly "I kind of enjoyed being an extra, but that's as far as it goes."

"Well, too bad."

Sarah went on with her story.

Sarah finished her tale and fell silent.

Zig Zag's eyes were still a little wide. She shook her head "Quite a tale. You really had an interesting holiday." They were silent for a moment before she went on "Ok, back to the here and now. Are you ready to get back to the grind?"

"Yes. I ummm... may be a little late in the mornings, but apart from that I should be fine."

"Good. We're almost done shooting 'The Spy who yiffed me'. We'll probably have to redo a few scenes... Pierre is still trying to see if he can save some of them, but... Anyway, Sabrina did manage to put in some work, but there are tons of things for you to do." Zig picked up a file and pawed it to Sarah "Here's the list of what I need from you. I know it is a lot and there are lots of things that have to be ready yesterday and I realize that you have other problems... Just do your best, ok."

"I won't let you down."

"Don't worry if you can't do everything, I don't want you to work until you keel over, ok?"


"There are a few things that we really need; I put those on the priority list together with a date. If you can get those done in time, then we're fine. Anything else you manage to do is a bonus."


"Hmmm... I don't want to pry too much, but there is one other thing... Assuming you're really pregnant, have you decided what to do?"


"You don't have to tell me, Sarah. It isn't my business, not at the moment, at least. Just tell me when you have decided so that I can plan accordingly."

"No, it's fine, Zig. I don't have a problem telling you, you just surprised me with the question. I will keep the kit."

"Oh. I see."

"Will you fire me?"

"Of course not! I wouldn't do that, Sarah. I really like your work and I want you to stay here..." She waved at the file in Sarah's paws "It's just that I need to get that stuff done. Sabrina hasn't been able to do as much as we would have liked, she simply didn't realize how much time and energy her cubs would cost her. I really hope that you'll want to stay, even if you only work part time. All I ask is that you keep me updated so I can plan things. I may have to hire another fur to help us out, after all. Ok?"

"Ok." They considered each other for a moment, and then Sarah waved the folder "I think I'd better see what I can do about that. See you."

"See you." Sarah left Zig's office.

# # # # #

Sarah turned back to the screen. She was getting slightly annoyed at the interruptions; she had a ton of things to do and had made hardly any progress today. On the one paw it was gratifying to see that her coworkers took an interest and sympathized with her, but on the other paw, she had just told her story for the fifth time today. She looked at the clock and shook her head; it was almost four and she had gotten in about an hours worth of work, if that. She shook her head "Maybe I should have held a general press conference; it would certainly have saved a lot of time."

She dismissed the screen saver and picked up the pen for her graphics tablet. She considered the picture on the screen and the effect Zig wanted her to impart on it for a minute and began to experiment with various settings. A minute later the phone rang. Sarah snarled in irritation and barely managed not to snap the pen in two as she slammed her paw down. Sarah forced herself to breathe deeply for three rings before she picked up the receiver.

The number was not one she knew. "ZZ Studios, Sarah Carolinae speaking." She couldn't quite keep the irritation out of her voice, but she managed not to snarl at the caller.

"Hello, this is Lydia Barkinsdale."

"Hello. Ummm..." For the moment Sarah couldn't place the name.

"You were my patient at City General hospital."

"Ah, yes! Sorry, I didn't recognize you right away."

"That's ok; I just called to tell you that the results from the lab are in."


"Everything is ok. They didn't find anything wrong with you."

"Thank you, that is good to know."

"How are you, Sarah?"

"I'm... ok, I guess."

"Anything you want to talk about? Ask me?"

"Ummm... Well... I'm pretty sure that I'm pregnant. I've had the morning sickness every day... I haven't done another test, but..."

"I see. It certainly explains why you reacted the way you did. I mean that you passed out."

"Ok. Thank you."


"Bye." Sarah hung up. She stared at the screen for a minute or three before she picked up the pen once more.

Sarah finally managed to get some work done. At five she decided to call it a day. She wanted to work longer, but she had to do some shopping and she was already feeling more than a little tired. She called their clinic and set up an appointment for the next day.

Zig Zag was still in her office when Sarah walked past it. She knocked on the open door and entered "Hi, Zig."

"Hello. What's up?"

"Not much. I just wanted to tell you that I'll be a little late tomorrow, I'm going to visit a doctor."

"Ok. Do you have anything to show me?"

"Not really... You weren't the only one who wanted to know how my holiday was and once the word spread..."

Zig rolled her eyes "You spent most of the day telling all the furs here your story?"

"Yeah..." Sarah looked down at her feet.

Zig's voice had a little edge to it "I don't normally mind that, but I expect you to meet the deadlines... It could cost us quite a bit of money if we can't make them..."

"I know that Zig. I'll make it."

"Ok." Zig smiled at Sarah to show her that she was not really angry.

Sarah thought "Not yet, at any rate."

"See you tomorrow."

"See you." Sarah left

# # # # #

The doctor closed and locked the door of his personal sanctuary. Only there did he feel safe enough to remove his hood. He didn't want his underlinings to see his face, to see the scars that disfigured him. He had thought about trying to remove them with plastic surgery, but something had always stopped him. He simply didn't want to trust his life to somebody else; the thought of allowing somebody, anybody to operate on his unconscious body scared him deeply. The other reason was that the scars reminded him of the stupid mistakes and miscalculations that he had made; mistakes that had eventually led to the disaster that had disfigured his face and much of his body. He couldn't afford to repeat these mistakes.

He felt tired; he had spent hours wrestling with the problems that the abduction of the alien had caused. He wondered if the knowledge he could gain from it would turn out to be worth the trouble. "Him" he corrected himself "our guest is a male." The alien's examination had already given him some interesting insights, but on the whole it had been more than a little disappointing. Apart from his strange and mostly hairless skin, he was much too similar to a normal fur to give him many insights. On the other paw, this opened up some other avenues of experimentation. The interest one of the nurses had taken in her patient offered some interesting possibilities.

He went to the bathroom and began to fill the large tub with hot water. He soaked for a long while. It always soothed the pain of the many and badly healed wounds. But not enough, not nearly enough. A small shot of morphine pushed the pain back enough to let him sleep.

When he returned to his work room, a message was waiting for him. It was the dossier Manuel had put together on the alien's girlfriend. Since he didn't have anything else to do for the moment, he opened it. On a whim he decided to skip the short summary and read the long version.

Sarah was 29 years, almost 30. She was a pure grey squirrel and was born in a small town in central Pennsylvania. Her parents had moved to Erie shortly after her birth. She had two younger brothers.

She had studied Art Design in Columbus, Ohio and even though she had not graduated with honors, she had done quite well. She found a job as a secretary with a large company. She married a raccoon not long afterwards. After that there was not much of interest to be found on her until the beginning of this year.

In February she had suddenly quit her job and signed up with a small film studio in Columbus.

"What!?!" The doctor's face paled when he read the name of the film studio. A shiver ran down his spine "Why them?" He stared at the offending words "ZZ Studios" for a long time. "Of all the places, why does she have to work there?" Finally he shook his head and went on reading.

A month ago Sarah had divorced her husband. Two weeks ago she had taken a vacation. Manuel had traced some purchases she had made with her credit card. The time and location matched the possible location of the alien's appearance.

The disfigured fur closed the document and stared at the screen "What do I do about this Sarah Carolinae?" He pondered the question for a while "No, she is not a threat on her own. But there is a chance she meets those who are. Do I try to kill or abduct her?" He stared at the wall for a while and shook his head "No, the risk is too big right now. Maybe if the human doesn't wake up, but I don't think I'll get a lot of useful information from her at any rate."

He picked up the phone. It was answered after two rings "Hello, Manuel. I need you to check up on two furs and update their files. Reference number 1 and 175."

"Yes, Doctor."

He put down the receiver with an exaggerated care that would have told anyone who knew him that his temper was very close to exploding. After a minute he got up and began to pace.

A few minutes later the computer chimed and he found that Manuel had updated the two files. As he had suspected, nothing had changed. Florence was still married to that ferret and he still worked for that porn studio.

The scarred fur pondered the problem for a while and finally decided not to take any action. All the things he could think of were either too dangerous or they were things that he didn't want to do. As long as they didn't directly threaten him, he couldn't just kill these furs; it simply wasn't done.

He had not forgiven Florence for her betrayal; he didn't think he would ever. But he had come to understand her reasons and he had to admit that they were valid. They had talked once afterwards and they had agreed to disagree and to avoid each other. Whatever else he was, he was a fur of honor; he wouldn't break his word unless Florence broke hers.

End of Chapter 5

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