It was a cold, cold January day – and, naturally, Emmy was spending it as he usually did. Bundled up beneath a blanket or two, alternating between playing games and watching the occasional movie that caught his eye as he scrolled through the seemingly endless list of cable channels.
The world outside was blanketed in snow and ice – which, maybe, was why the sheep was so surprised when their doorbell rang, and soon enough Cai had joined them on their couch, snowed in and content.
The movie the two had been watching finally drew to an end, credits being cut off by a commercial – one of a pair of beachgoers enjoying the sun, some sort of inflatable flamingo toy being tossed around further down the beach.
“Ugh, winter’s just too cold,” Cai said aloud, tugging their own blanket a little tighter. “Summer’s more my season, even if you guys don’t really get it up here.”
“Winter’s fine,” Emmy rebutted, shrugging. “Get to stay warm and cozy, even if the snow and ice isn’t great.”
“What, not a fan of the beach?”
“I like it! Just… haven’t been, much.”
“Really?” Cai blinked.
“Not exactly the closest thing to visit,” Emmy shrugged.
The conversation dragged for a moment, before, absently, the sheep mentioned… inflatables. The flamingo was back on screen, grinning as it bounced around in the waves. It looked… inviting. Nice, even.
“Probably… nice, you know? All floaty.”
“What, being an inflatable?” Cai asked, a curious look on their face as they snuggled a bit closer, leaning on the sheep.
“Yeah, like… I don’t know. Hard to explain.”
“…Given the chance,” Cai began, eyes twinkling. “Would you?”
“Oh…” Emmy trailed off, thinking. Would he?
“…Yeah, I think so.”
The next thing Emmy knew, they’d been gently pulled to the side – and the bunny had pressed their nose to his, meeting the sheep’s gaze.
“Let’s see, eh?”
The next thing Emmy knew, the bunny had kissed him – completely bewildering the sheep, until, after a moment, their cheeks suddenly… filled with air.
Cai took a deep, deep breath, puffing into Emmy with all the care of someone inflating a raft for a day on the waves, and to the sheep’s amazement (and concern) they felt their tummy begin to rise, displacing the blanket as beneath his clothing the sheep’s wool began to smooth over, gently squeaking and squirking as it swelled.
Emmy didn’t know it, but as puff after puff was forced in through the sheep’s soft, pliable snout, he began to get… bigger. Slowly, at first, as puff after puff rounded the sheep, but soon noticeably enough that the blanket wasn’t exactly covering much of him anymore…
..revealing, to Emmy’s surprise, off-yellows and creams, his tummy no longer held beneath the shirt he’d been relaxing in, swollen as it was. Cai, taking a break from filling their friend, grabbed the tummy between their paws, giving it a long, squeaky rub.
“Everything you hoped for?” The bunny asked, grinning up at Emmy in a bucktoothed beam.
“Y-Yeah…” The sheep breathed, giving his swollen, off-color tummy a prod. It gave beneath his hoof like… an inflatable, would. The colors weren’t his, but… if anything, that made him excited.
“Keep going?” Cai offered.
Emmy merely nodded, enjoying the sensation as the bunny scooted over, climbing onto his swollen tummy and lay on him like an airbed, snouts pressed together.
Cai, again, took a deep breath – and pushed more warm, comforting air into the sheep, bursting the buttons on Emmy’s pants and shortening his legs somewhat – hooves beginning to slowly, methodically puff up into inflatable bunny paws, if a few sizes too large.
The bunny guided the transformation, sometimes slow, sometimes quicker, rubbing and squeaking and squeezing at Emmy as more and more of him began to become an inflatable copy – wool shrinking away as it was replaced with painted plastic, internals dwindling away into so much warm, comforting bunny air.
Emmy grew – twice, three times their original size as the bunny puffed, and puffed, the poor couch starting to run out of space as the changes crawled ever higher. A valve, the hallmark of a toy, began to sprout as Cai sprawled across the toy’s huge chest – then a barcode, dotting Emmy’s thigh.
The sheep’s ears stretched, towering, overinflated shapes reminiscent of the bunny filling him – and then came the hair, a molded, bright blond mess of seamed plastic and air. Emmy could barely focus, so lost in the bliss of being so light, and full, and… bunny! They weren’t round by any stretch of the imagination, merely… big! Soft. Squeaky.
Just like he’d wanted.
“Ready?” Cai said, finally, looking the sheep in the face.
“Hm?” Emmy replied, dreamily.
Cai didn’t wait – grabbing the sheep’s cheeks gently but firmly, and beginning to rub – rubbing and massaging and gently squeaking the remaining wool as it, too began to soften and yellow, inflating beneath their paws into the soft, pliable cheeks of an inflatable bunny. Emmy’s eyes began to change, square pupils first lightening to a bright blue – and then changing entirely, rounding out and flattening into the printed decals of an inflatable Cai.
His snout, too, didn’t escape unscathed – gaining a brand new printed-on pink nose and a little plastic bucktooth, shortening considerably!
Lightheaded from the change, the two giggled at each other – and, with a squeeze, Cai hugged… themself.
“Well,” Cai said after a moment, poking Emmy’s nose.
“How is it?”
The sheep-turned-toybunny thought for a moment, resting a cushion-sized pooltoy paw on the bunny.