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Chapter Four

I know the right thing to do would have been to help Bri. I should have thrown some cold water on him or slapped his face or something like that.

But I was a girl and that seemed a lot more important than my best friend laying passed out on the floor. I stared into the mirror again.

I hadn't made it past the boobs last time. This time I noticed the belly. I don't know how I could have missed it before. Bri hadn't been exaggerating about the 'uber-round' belly. It was much bigger than Becky's, which truthfully, wasn't that big. Becky was like three and a half months along, just big enough to start looking pregnant. I was like a million months pregnant.

Of course, the little brown tank top I was wearing didn't help matters. I suddenly felt like hyperventalati ng. I sank down on the toilet seat and tried to throw my head between my legs. I couldn't; the huge balloon of my waist got in the way.

"I'm a girl," I mumbled. "I've got boobs. I'm pregnant. Becky's going to kill me. Becky's--"

I tossed my hands around helplessly and began to talk to myself. "Becky can't find out. She's pregnant and overemotional and she'll blame me. Everything's my fault. She'll be like 'Nick I can't believe you turned yourself into a woman. You're a pig.' I just have to go back to the hospital, put the old witch in a headlock, and get my penis back."

I looked over at Bri. He turned his head and moaned. I walked over and crouched down beside him.

"Hey, wake up!" I lightly smacked his face. "You gotta take me back to the hospital!"

It took a few more slaps, but Bri finally opened his right eye. He immediately closed it.

"You're still here," he mumbled.

"Not for long. Take me back to the hospital. Please?"

A half hour later, I was sitting in the passenger seat. I was wearing a pair of Bri's sweatpants and a hoodie. Don't ask me why, but he also gave me a new pair of socks. I swatted at the long pieces of hair that kept clinging to my face.

"You can't be a girl," Bri said for the millionth time. "It's not humanly possible."

"It wasn't possible for AJ and Howie to switch bodies," I pointed out.

"That's different. They were both guys. That's at least understandable . You. You..."

Bri glanced over at me. I grabbed my crotch and teared up. "I'm dickless."

Bri blanched. "Let's not talk about it."

"We don't have to," I said. "As soon as we get back to the hospital I'm getting my penis back."

For the first time ever, Bri actually sped. He swung into the emergency room entrance and parked by the door. I unbuckled my seatbelt.

"Should I wait for you?" Bri asked. I waved him away. "No need. I've got this covered."

He didn't look convinced, but I think just being in my presence was making me nervous. As soon as I closed the door, he sped off. Yanking up the jogging pants, I walked through the entrance.

"Can I help you?" the same woman from earlier asked.

"I need to talk to Nurse Hatchet," I said confidently. She looked at me like I was crazy. "Excuse me?"

I suddenly realized her name wasn't Hatchet, but I couldn't remember what it was. "She's short and she looks like a toad. Her eyes are all beady and..."

"Ohhhh." The woman nodded. "I'm sorry, but she's not here."

I slapped my hands on the counter, lamenting at how feminine they looked. "What do you mean she's not here?"

"She's on vacation."

"Well, where does she live?" I blurted. "It's an emergency. I'm her...her...ni ece!"

The woman's forehead creased.

"I'm sorry ma'am, but I can't give you that information. Besides, she's not at home. More than likely her flight's already taken off."

"Her flight? Where is she going?"

The woman shrugged. Behind her I could see a couple other employees having what looked like a party. "She's going to Romania or Egypt or something."

Little stars appeared before my eyes. Romania? Egypt?

"When will she be back?" I mumbled. The woman looked at my gigantic stomach and then back up at me sympatheticall y.

"In a month."

A month. After bursting into uncontrollable tears, I pulled myself together. I had put my car keys in the pocket of the jogging pants. I got behind the wheel and exhaled.

I couldn't go home. There was only one place I could hide out.

Back to Brian's I went.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I'd gotten home, studied the abandoned blanket and the mess in the bathroom and tried to figure out what had happened. Obviously Nick hadn't really turned into a girl. This was a well designed prank. I tried to remember the last time I'd irritated Nick and if he'd gotten be back yet. Of course, with Nick there isn't always a reason for pulling a prank. I paced and ran my hands through my hair and wandered from the door to the sofa, trying to remember if I'd heard the front door.

Leighanne had been babbling so much that I --


I sprang to the kitchen and snapped the phone from its cradle and dialed her cell phone number. "Hello?" she sang into the phone.

"Hey!" I said, breathless, "Sorry about that."

"You okay?" she laughed, "You sound like you just ran a marathon..."

"Yeah no, I'm okay, I was - walking around the apartment."

"Ummm, oka--y..." Leighanne laughed awkwardly. "Is everything all right? You hung up abruptly before."

I nodded, even though she couldn't see me. "Oh. Yeah, yes. I just was dealing with Nick. You know Nick. Always pranking and stuff..." I rubbed the back of my head with my hand. "He's a real goofball."

"You sure you're okay?"

Somehow I've gone crazy and so has Nick didn't seem like a good answer. "Yes," I lied.

Suddenly my apartment door slammed open, "Briii-iiiian?" sang out the shrill girls' voice from before. "Brian?"

"Who the hell is that?" Leighanne asked.

"It's - It's - It's Jenn," I lied, "She wanted to talk about the Backstreet-New Kids tour and..."

"That doesn't sound like Jenn..."

"BRIIIAAANNN? Helloooooo, I know you're hoooome!"

"Brian, who the h--"

"Gotta gooo!" I sang, slamming down the phone.

Leighanne was probably gonna slaughter the heck out of me and sell my skins on eBay like a bear rug. Some fan would buy me and do dirty things to my skins. I didn't like that idea.


"Okay, look," I said, stepping into the foyer from the kitchen. The tall, blonde, pregnant woman stood in the door way all pretty and stuff... and my mouth went a little teeny bit dry. "Look, you've taken this far enough..." I whispered, "This acting... acting like you're..." I was staring at her breasts again.

They were perfect. Even more perfect than Leighanne's.

"Oh my God, stop staring at my tits," she gasped, covering them with her arms. "I have a face too, you know!"

"Sorry," I apologized. I looked up at her eyes, trying to convince myself that her breasts weren't worth looking down again for. I stared into those blue glistening eyes. Where the hell had he found some chick with the same eyes as him? Those same gorgeous blue eyes...

Wait wait, whoa, I sound like a fan, thinking of Nick's eyes. Maybe I should stare at her boobs, just to make sure I'm still a man.

"Brian, look," she said, "I just - I got to the hospital and Hatchett's in like friggin' Egypt or something..." she sighed, "So I gotta stay here until she gets back..."

"Whoa hold up, no - no no no. I can't have a woman staying in my apartment," I said, "I'm a married man." I looked her toes to forehead. "Look, sweetie, I dunno what Nick told you or paid you to do this, but..."

"Brian, I am Nick!"

"Okay, look, it's cute. You're doing good keeping up the story, but Nick's not here now and you can give up the charade..."

"I'm not fuckin' with you dude!" she wailed.

I sighed.

"Seriously, I'll prove it."

"You can't, you aren't--"

"Your greatest fear isn't really heights," she gasped out the words, "It's squirrels. You hate squirrels. You'll pretend they're fuzzy and cute and whatever but really they give you the heebie jeebies and you hate them. You worry they're gonna throw acorns at you from the trees."

I stared at her.

"Nick told you to say that," I snapped. "I can't believe he told anyone that I just can't--"

"You have a mole!" she wailed, "On your left ass cheek."

I blinked. "I don't even know why Nickwould know that."

"I dunno why I know that," she admitted, "But I do! I do! Don't you believe me?"

She'd jumped up and down, making her breasts move again. I stared as they settled themselves once more, then forced myself not to stare at them. I looked up at her eyes. I hesitated. Then I asked, "If you're really Nick..." I couldn't believe I was even saying those words, "...then tell me who Senor Giddyup is."

Her eyes connected with mine. I thought for a moment it was confusion that I was seeing there, but then the laughter reached her mouth and the corners of her eyes folded in amusement. I waited. Finally, after a long bout of giggles, she squeaked, "Our secret name for Howie's stage boners."

"Holy cheez-its, man, it is you!" I whelped. I didn't pass out this time though, my jaw dropped and we just stared at each other for a long time. Did breath go out first or in first? I couldn't remember. My eyes skimmed her - his? - pregnant body and I remembered lamaze breathing. "Hoo-ha-hee, hoo-ha-hee, hoo-ha-hee..."

"What the hell are you doing?" Nick asked.



His cluelessness sobered me up. "Nick, don't you do lamaze with Becky?"

"Is that like a sex position? It sounds hot!" his eyes sparkled.

"No!" I said, rolling my eyes back at him, "It's breathing techniques... for when the baby comes out..."

"Oh that," Nick said. He paused, "I dunno, I think she signed us up for something about breathing or something but the game was on and..."

He'd absently started rubbing his boobs while he was talking. Like for no reason, just randomly started rotating his fingers around the nippular area. I was transfixed. He was talking but I couldn't hear it. I stared at the breasts, practically salivating.

Nick suddenly noticed my absence of mind. "Dawg, seriously, stop. That's really creepy."

"Stop rubbing them then!"

Nick looked down and realized he was massaging his nips and dropped his hands quickly. "Je-sus," he murmured...

"Don't use the Lord's name in vain man."

"I had no idea I was doing that." He looked at me, "Dude. I just felt myself up."

I stared at him for a long moment (in the eyes). "This is like that question about how women get anything done with mirrors around..." I muttered, "Cos they could spend all day seeing breasts..."

Nick's eyes widened.


"I'll be in the bathroom!" And with that, he ran.

I stood in the hallway, blinking at the place where he'd been standing, mystified. My best friend was a woman with the most absolutely perfect breasts I'd ever seen.

Please don't tell Leighanne I thought about Nick's boobs.