Fantasy Fiction

Nancy loads the potion into the syringe, then paces back and forth in front of the cage. “I wish Freddie was in his hammock. I could detect him easier.”

“You’ve got this, Nance. Think about all the times you practiced injecting him on the exercise wheel while you were blindfolded. After a few tries, you always find the lower right quadrant of his abdomen,” Maggie says.

“Thanks for your vote of confidence.” Nancy stops pacing, stands facing the cage, and inhales deeply into her belly to calm herself. Then, she injects Freddie.

The two scientists stare at mouse in his cage. Maggie’s eyes are locked on the little critter still running on his exercise wheel. “I think this is going to be the longest two minutes of my life.” Maggie says.

“Tell me about it, “says Nancy, rubbing her hands together as if she is trying to keep them warm on a brisk winter day.

Maggie and Nancy stare at the lab mouse as his tail and feet, and then the rest of him fade away. They can hear and see the wheels spinning, but the mouse has become completely invisible. Maggie stands up tall, all 5 foot 3 inches of her, and shouts, “We did it!”

Nancy beams at her friend, “Not bad for a couple of retired scientists,” and grabs her hands. The two women literally jump for joy.

When they stop, Maggie says, “I suppose it’s time to try this potion on a human.”


Maggie had worked for 26 years at AstraZeneca as a Research and Development scientist in Biopharmaceuticals, and Nancy had been in the same division for 25 years. Often, they had collaborated on research projects and had become close friends over the years. They sometimes kidded with each other about how convenient it would be to have an invisibility potion. “I could have affirmed my suspicions about my cheating ex-husband a year earlier if I’d sat in the passenger seat of his car without him seeing me. Imagine his shock when I suddenly reappeared just as he was pulling into the Marriott parking lot,” said Nancy.

“And I could have spied on Brenda, that thieving cleaning person I had. Being invisible would have helped me prove that she did steal pieces of my grandmother’s silver and the emerald solitaire James gave me last Christmas. I know I didn’t accidentally throw a fork, two knives, and a serving spoon in the trash or simply misplace my ring. I’m 58, not 98.”

“That’s true, and you look 38. That’s what all that working out does for you. I’ve got to get back to my Pilates classes. Anyway, back to being invisible. Even if we had been able to make ourselves invisible to catch the culprits, nobody would have believed us.

“Not to mention, people can’t just make themselves invisible.”


Maggie paused before she said, “Unless there was a potion they could take to enable that. What if we could develop and market an invisibility potion ourselves?”

“Maybe we could, but we’d also have to create a potion to make the person visible again. I don’t think anyone would want to be invisible forever. “

What started as a wild fantasy soon became a reality when Nancy and Maggie retired three years later.


“Whoa, slow down, Mags. We need to make sure the antidote for invisibility works equally as well,” Nancy says.

“I know. We’ll wait 24 hours to see if our little buddy reappears on his own. If not, we’ll inject him with the visibility potion tomorrow.”


The following morning, the scientists return to the lab in Nancy’s basement. “Look, the exercise wheel looks like it’s spinning by itself. Freddie’s still invisible.”

“OK Freddie. Let’s make you visible again,” Nancy says as she jabs the mouse. Once again, Nancy and Maggie stand transfixed as they stare at the cage. Two interminable minutes later, Nancy says,” Look. There’s his tail.”

“And his little rump.”

“And his back feet.” Within a few more seconds, Freddie’s front paws and torso also appear. “There’s that sweet little face. He’s fully visible,” Maggie says as she high fives Nancy, then sets a few cherry banana treats into the cage. Now, are we ready to try it on one of us?”

“Now’s as good a time as any,” Nancy says as she nervously rubs her hands together.

Maggie digs a quarter out of her wallet. “Alright. Heads, it’s me. Tails, it’s you. Are you ready?”

Nancy nods, as her narrow shoulders creep up towards her ears and watches the coin land onto the lab table tail side up. “I’m it,” she murmurs.

“Are you sure you’re ready for this, Nance?”

“Yes, in the name of modern science,” Nancy says as she pulls down her jeans and jabs the needle into her bare thigh.”

Maggie watches Nancy’s face and body fade away within five minutes and chuckles. “You’re invisible alright, but I’m looking at a lab coat, jeans, and blue Sketchers without a body and glasses floating above them.”

 “I suppose I could remove my clothes and glasses but , going forward, that could be a problem for those of us who are half-blind and when the temperature is anything but 90 degrees.”

“Not so fast, Nancy. Your clothing just disappeared, and there go your shoes and glasses.” Maggie holds her right palm in the direction where she thinks Nancy is, and feels Nancy slap her palm.

Maggie strides over to the supply cabinet and pulls out the potion and a syringe.

“What are you doing, Maggie?”

“I don’t feel right letting you be the only Guinee pig.”

“Hey, we agreed that only one of us would be the test subject until we perfect the formula.”

“I know, but if something unforeseen happens, I don’t want you going through it alone.” As Maggie is wiggling out of her jeans, she feels Nancy grip the hand holding the syringe.

“Don’t do it, please.”

“My mind’s made up,” Maggie says as she plunges the needle into her well-developed thigh.

" You know what, Mags, you’re a hard-headed little bitch.”

Maggie giggles. “Stubbornness is my forte, but I call it persistence. Hey, while we’re both invisible, why don’t we have some fun?”

Nancy aims her voice in the direction of where she thinks Maggie is standing. “What do you have in mind?”

“Let’s mess with some people before we use the visibility potion on ourselves tomorrow.”

Nancy chuckles. “That could prove interesting, but how will we explain a car that looks like it’s driving itself?”

“Mm. That could be a problem...”

  “Wait, I've got it! Heather had one of those life-sized dolls when she was little. To this day, all her dolls are still in the attic. Call me sentimental. Anyway, I could put the doll on my lap while I drive. She’ll look like the driver…”

 “Won’t she look like a child though?”

"Not if we put a hat and glasses on her. Her face will be hardly visible, and I don’t think anyone looks at drivers in the other cars that closely anyway.”

 “Let’s hope so. Who do you want to mess with first?”

“I want to visit my ex’s office and move things around like his laptop, papers…”

 “Then, let’s go to Kersten’s workplace and do the same. You know, that pain-in-the ass daughter-in-law of mine?”

 “Oh yeah. The one that told you she already had a mother, and she didn’t want you as another one.”

 “Yep, that’s the one. Not to mention, the way she controls Sean their kids. I can count on one hand how many times I’ve been allowed to see my grandchildren in the past couple years, and that’s only if she’s with them. Let’s go cause some mischief, Nance.”

Maggie has already told her husband she’ll be staying the night at Nancy’s because the part of the experiment they’ll be working on will require late hours. He has no idea that the real reason is she’ll be invisible all night. After they visit Nancy’s ex and Maggie’s daughter-in-law, the two women spend the evening pulling various pranks on each other. Nancy creeps silently behind Maggie and yells,”Ahh!” She squeals with delight as her friend screams. Then, unexpectedly, Maggie tiptoes towards Nancy and snatches the glasses off her face. Each one tries to outdo the other until they finally settle down to eat some leftover lasagna and salad, and drink several glasses of Prosecco.

The next morning, Nancy and Maggie administer the invisibility antidote and wait. Eleven minutes later, they are still invisible; eleven hours later, they are still invisible. “We should be visible by now,” croaks Maggie.

“I know,” Nancy says feeling bile rise to her throat. “We knew it might take an hour for humans to become visible again but not eleven. We need to be patient though and wait another few hours.”

t 5:00 pm, Maggie says, “We’re still invisible! I can’t go home like this! I told James I wouldn’t try this potion on myself until we knew it was safe and the visibility potion worked as well as the invisibility potion. He’ll be beside himself, not to mention angry as a hornet that I lied to him!”

“Why don’t you tell him we’re in another crucial part of the experiment, and we probably won’t finish til the middle of the night. Say you don’t want me to have to work on it by myself, so you’ll sleep at my house again tonight.”

“He won’t like it. He worries about me working such long hours.” Maggie imitates a man’s voice. “‘I thought you were going to slow down when you retire, Mags,” is his favorite line. “

“What choice do you have?”

“Not much. I’ll call him in a few minutes. I think we should try to tweak the visibility potion in the meantime. You know, so we’ll be prepared in case we’re not visible by tomorrow?”

“Oh, ye of little faith. Let’s wait. Hopefully, we’ll be able to see each other in the morning.”

Swallowing the panic in her voice, Maggie utters, “That makes sense, hope being the operative word.”

December 15, 2022 17:25

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