The shape-shifter.

Submitted into Contest #48 in response to: Write about someone who has a superpower.... view prompt

166 comments

Fantasy

She radiated light just like her name. Her beautiful skin glistened in the neon light coming from the paved court through the slits in the blind, her soot-black lashes matted, and her gray beady eyes mischievous more than ever. Her long jet black hair fell in loose waves past her shoulders, with a few black peekaboo strands. “Haya. . . .?” called her mother. She quickly hid her diary under her pillow and marched off to her mother, anxious to see what came next.


Dear diary,

Ma still doesn’t know of my shape-shifting. It has been three days since I last changed shape. I changed into Yusuf, my brother last time because he knows. How funny it was when I became a young boy, dressed loosely in a drab green T-shirt and baggy green trousers. I had a green army jacket tied around my waist and a green canvas bag slung over my shoulder. The only non-green thing about me was the pair of scruffy black walking boots on my feet. Do you know as to why did I change into him? It is because he was having a high degree of fever. Very high! And, he couldn’t attend his school’s function in such a condition. Could he?


“Ma, you called?” asked Haya.


“Yes. Could you please peel the potatoes and chop the onions.”


Oh, no. Not the chores again! She visualized of being a cat and . . . . Woah, her powers never disappointed her. Smiling, she meowed and left the scene.


“Haya. . . .? Where’d she go?”


Haya was strolling around on the newly paved street, as a cat of course when she saw him. There was her uncle. He wasn’t as slight as Haya first thought him to be: he wasn’t exactly muscular, but he wasn’t weedy-looking either…there was an air of hidden strength about him, a graceful strength that showed in his balance, the way he held himself, the way he walked. . . . Changing appearance, she approached him. 

“Hello!” 

“Hello,” he replied, his voice hoarse. But, without saying anything further, he vanished into thin air, leaving not even a trace behind him. So her powers were definitely genetic. 


Dear diary,

My powers are proving to be no good to me. Except for helping in avoiding the hectic house chores, of course. Oh, I hope I get to be Maryse Rills tomorrow. The center of attention in our class. Good night.”


Haya woke up to something really strange. She wasn’t feeling like herself at all. Her blond hair was suddenly a different color. She bounced off her bed and headed over to the mirror, anxious to see what the matter was. She gasped. Her wish had been heard. There, in front of her stood Maryse Rills. No wonder she was called the “star" – her amber eyes shone like orbs in the night. Her hair, deep hues of fierce crimson against her angelic face Haya smirked. Things were about to get spiced up!


At her school, things kept going on crazily in her favor. Maryse was on leave and so the people who once followed Maryse now followed her. Haya never thought that her dream would come true in such a way. The dance crew captain arrived. 

”Maryse? Will you be coming for the practice this afternoon?” 

“Of course, I will.”

“What happened to your voice?”

Instead of replying to the unexpected question, Haya quickly hurried away.


Back at her home, she changed back to her usual self. She kept on playing and then replaying her day’s highlights. She was smiling to herself when her mother arrived. 


“You always get away with the chores one way or the other. But, today. The chores have arrived for you themselves. Chop the onions! Quick. Quick. . .”


“Ma. . . I’m really tired. I promise I’ll do the chores once I wake after taking an afternoon nap.”


“No! You’re doing the chores, now!”


Defeated, she got busy with the work. Chop, chop, chop. . . Peel, peel, peel . . . Chop, chop, chop. . . Peel, peel, peel . . .


The sunlight poured into her room through the crevices of her room’s window. A brand new day meant a brand new appearance. . . . She had never tried to pull off an appearance in front of her Abba. She thought of Mina, the new neighbor, and her mum. Abba detested them for their never-ending talks. What if Haya changed into Mina this time? She giggled, Abba was about to get furious.


Abba arrived late that afternoon, around 7:05. But, Haya was already ‘in Mina’s shoes.’ She now had bright, dark eyes and satiny brown skin. She wore a pale blue hoodie with grey capri pants. Her eyes were Fremen blue, staring out of a soft, round face. 

“Hello. . .” she began, hoping Abba wouldn’t recognize her.

 “Hello. . . .young lady.” He smiled.

 Young lady? Was her secret out, already? Her heart started sinking. Nevertheless, she continued. 

“Uncle, I’m here to meet Haya. Is she at home?” 

“She is everywhere but home, young lady.”

Haya’s face turned pale. Everywhere but home? So, they all knew it. Yusuf must’ve given her away. She wanted to cry. 

“All good, young lady?” Abba wasn’t going to go easy.

“Yessir,” and she quickly left the house.

Once outside, she breathed heavily. How dare they play with her emotions? She wanted to shout at the top of her lungs at the sudden betrayal. But then again, why did she expect them to be fair with her when she, herself had been playing with their emotions. A wave of guilt passed over her like fog on a beach party.

Guilt-stricken, she headed home.


Who would Haya want to be now? There was a long queue of people for Haya to change appearance into. 

Yusuf – done.

Mina—done.

Maryse—done.

An animal—done.

Abba—nope.

Ma—nope.

Amena— . . . .? Oh, how had she forgotten Amena?


She was about to shape-shift into Amena when suddenly there was a. . . Whoosh. Haya was now drenched in ice-cold water. “Hello, hello? My daughter is dreaming of having a superpower again?” her Mom smirked. The bucket of cold water, still in her hand.


Dreaming . . . ? Had this been a dream all along? Oh, no! Not again.

June 29, 2020 16:23

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166 comments

Julia Gibson
20:42 Jun 30, 2020

I love the rich descriptions in this story. Also, this was a clever ending. I did have a hard time figuring out who Abba was, grandmother, grandfather, uncle? But that didn't take away from the story itself. Good job!

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Batool Hussain
07:58 Jul 01, 2020

Thank you for liking my story, Julia! Abba is the father:)

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Erin Rasnick
18:27 Jun 30, 2020

I really enjoyed reading your story. I loved the part where she changed into a cat to avoid her chores. I also liked the twist for the ending. Overall, a great story.

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Batool Hussain
07:45 Jul 01, 2020

Thank you so much!

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Aditi Singh
14:50 Jun 30, 2020

Funny and twisty story line, creative imagination!

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Batool Hussain
14:52 Jun 30, 2020

Thank you so much:)

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Maha K
13:34 Jun 30, 2020

Love love love it!!!!

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Batool Hussain
13:54 Jun 30, 2020

Thank you!

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Deborah Angevin
09:57 Jun 30, 2020

Loved the ending! :)

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Batool Hussain
11:13 Jun 30, 2020

Thank you!

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Imane Sah.
08:33 Jun 30, 2020

Good and Super stody..... Keep Writing 🌸🌸

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Batool Hussain
08:55 Jun 30, 2020

Thanks.

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Imane Sah.
11:01 Jun 30, 2020

No problem🥰🥰

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Shirley Medhurst
08:13 Jun 30, 2020

A really fun read throughout, well done! (although not sure about ending with the whole thing having been a dream... It broke the fantasy spell)

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Batool Hussain
08:55 Jun 30, 2020

I appreciate your feedback!

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Dobby's Sock
07:49 Jun 30, 2020

Hey Batool, since you had requested. Easily evident at the start itself was the structuring and mixing that needs to be done. Like at the start I would go less with the description and more with the tension building. Long sentences describing anything, and three of them at the same time, in a short story never made sense to me. "Hmm..." is something not required in exposition. Even in dialogues it rarely serves much purpose. Dialogues pace up a story so if you will use "of course I will" instead of a nod, your story will leap ahead b...

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Batool Hussain
08:53 Jun 30, 2020

Thanks for the feedback:)

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Sourav Bebarta
06:58 Jun 30, 2020

Beautiful amazing story with a cute twist.😍

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Batool Hussain
07:02 Jun 30, 2020

Glad that you liked it:)

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Deborah Mercer
06:37 Jun 30, 2020

As promised, have read your story, and I'm most impressed. I loved the ironic humour of "she wasn't feeling like herself at all", and think that the simile about the fog at a beach-party was a great one. Sometimes the "it was a dream" ending doesn't work, in this case it was fine, but I still wonder if a different ending might not have been equally good. Yes, a few minor grammar quibbles, but that's a trivial point and certainly didn't spoil an excellent story.

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Batool Hussain
06:45 Jun 30, 2020

Thank you so much, Debora.🌸

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Zan Lexus
02:09 Jul 05, 2020

I agree that the dream twist was a bit anticlimactic. Overall though, really liked the story. :)

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Corey Melin
06:27 Jun 30, 2020

Superbly done. Love the descriptive narrative so you can picture the story. Dream on!

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Batool Hussain
06:44 Jun 30, 2020

Thanks🌸

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Khizra Aslam
06:10 Jun 30, 2020

The ending was quite unbelievable.. ❤😂

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Batool Hussain
06:44 Jun 30, 2020

Glad that u liked it🙃

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Katharine Tierney
01:50 Jun 30, 2020

I liked this...but how did Haya get doused with water? Was she washing dishes? Or did Mom dump water over her to "wake her up"? Maybe Mom has a superpower of her own to know when her daughter is zoning out!;)

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Batool Hussain
04:24 Jun 30, 2020

;)

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01:01 Jun 30, 2020

This story was so beautifully intriguing! Impressive! Sincerely, A.

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Batool Hussain
04:24 Jun 30, 2020

Thank youu

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Urooj Asim
19:30 Jun 29, 2020

Amazing!!

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Batool Hussain
04:26 Jun 30, 2020

Thanksss

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Aima F
17:21 Jun 29, 2020

Stars to you Batool! A creative story! gOOd job=)

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Batool Hussain
04:35 Jun 30, 2020

Thanks...

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Aeliya Hussain
17:19 Jun 29, 2020

A beautiful story, once again! Keep going:)

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Batool Hussain
04:35 Jun 30, 2020

Thank you 🌸

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Marccc O.
17:12 Jun 29, 2020

A wonderful story, Batool! Keep writing:)

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Batool Hussain
04:35 Jun 30, 2020

Thank you so much

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Samantha Chills
17:09 Jun 29, 2020

Wow! What an interesting take on the prompt. Amazing:)

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Batool Hussain
04:35 Jun 30, 2020

Thanksss

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Sayani Sarkar
11:42 Jul 08, 2020

This is very cute and super funny. I can totally picture the character of a young girl , day dreaming, looking for adventures. It's so intriguing xD

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Batool Hussain
12:00 Jul 08, 2020

Thank you;)

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