It was a clear, sunny summer day – and, as far as Cai was concerned, perfect weather for a nice day out in the surf and sun after a long, long winter!
The rabbit whistled to themself as they unbundled their beach supplies, spreading a little towel out on the sand and carefully driving the umbrella’s pole into the ground, shading their little secluded corner of the beach just enough to cool it off beneath the warm May sky. Further down the beach, a few beachgoers and out-of-towners were enjoying the surf, the wind carrying the sounds of distant music and laughter their way as the rabbit sprawled out in their chair, intent on spending a few hours relaxing.
That was, at least, until something rolled up to their chair – bouncing off of it with a soft “thoomp” and plopping to the sand unceremoniously, shaking the bunny out of their reverie and drawing their gaze downwards.
A small, lime green pooltoy ring, about bunny-size, with little hold-on handles around the edges.
Lifting their sunglasses, the bunny glances back up the beach – but doesn’t see anyone chasing after it. Maybe it’d just been rolling for… miles? It was a windy day, after all.
Shrugging to themself, Cai slid out of their chair, giving the ring a quick visual once-over to make sure it hadn’t damaged itself in its long tumble, before planting their paws on their hips and gazing out at the ocean.
Blue, calm, and awfully inviting – it was starting to get a bit warm on the sand, anyway. Why not take a quick dip? Couldn’t hurt, could it?
Already imagining the cool water against their fur, the bunny eagerly plucked the ring up from the sand, pulling it over their head…
…and immediately being struck by the most intense sense of dizziness they’d ever felt, the poolring sliding down their body until it unceremoniously wedged itself around their tummy – which, promptly, expanded out around it.
Their vision sprung upwards, causing the rabbit to wobble – before, after a moment, it all cleared up, leaving Cai confused and… frankly, bewildered.
For one, their vision was a few good feet higher than it had been before they’d tugged the ring on – something revealed to be symptomatic of a much bigger change a moment later when they glanced downwards, new painted-on eyes and grin meeting their new rounded, flat-bottomed inflatable dinosaur hands and huge pear-shaped tummy, valve sticking out just over the top of the ring as if to hammer home that it, in fact, had been responsible.
“Mmph?!” Cai exclaimed – though it was more of an extended squeak than anything more substantial.
Down the beach, Mole skidded to a stop – suddenly stricken by the strangest sense of dizziness.
Instantly, he froze – hands flying to his face, brand new soft rabbit paws prodding at the unfamiliar snout and hair, then the long ears.
Everything below his waistling remained unchanged, for the most part; huge dinosaur stompy paws and his big, inflatable tail – but who knew how long that would last? He had to find that ring, quick!
Back up the beach, Cai was trying their best to tug the ring back up over the valve – bracing it against the chair, grabbing it as best they could without fingers, even considering, for a moment, trying to gesture to the closest beachgoers that they needed help – but it seemed the spot they’d picked for being secluded had, in fact, succeeded in that front.
Finally, as they gave the ring one last enormous tug, a loud SQUIRK reached their ears – and, unceremoniously, the pooltoy ring dropped to the sand.
Cai’s trunks vanished as it passed by – a huge, inflatable dinosaur tail springing forth like a flood of green vinyl, slapping the sand and knocking the chair over. Their paws swelled into big toy dinosaur feet, dainty rabbit toes replaced by chunky plastic and painted-on decals – and, as Cai wobbled, the wind tripped them up…
…sending the big inflatable dinosaur tumbling to the sand, grumbling internally.
Before their very eyes, the wind picked up again – and the ring began to wobble, before with one great gust, it took off, bouncing across the sand into the distance!
“Hey! Stop that ring!”
Cai blinked in surprise as a short yellow rabbit skidded to a stop just next to their chair, panting – though it wasn’t the similarity of his outfit that surprised them.
It was… well. It was Cai!
“You, uh, put the ring on, huh?” The rabbit asked sheepishly, rubbing the back of their head. “Sorry about that! I’ll… uh, go get it!”
With that, he darted off – leaving a very confused inflatable sprawled out on the sand, watching the ring – and rabbit – disappear into the distance.
…Some beach day this was.