Why am I not a cat yet? (jam version)

Prompt: "In the Cali Co office building, employee health is important and crunch is discouraged! That's why to ensure that everyone gets plenty of rest, the harder people work, the more they turn into cats—until they nap away their sleep debt. In theory." (part of the Overtime Cats antholojam)

Content note: includes descriptions of gender dysphoria (sort of), and a brief mention of transphobia

Chapter 1: New Job

I looked up at the Cali Co office building, where I was about to start my new job as a game developer. Is this really what I want? I don't even know why this appeals to me, I wondered. I shouldn't worry too much; it's only going to be temporary. Somehow, though, despite my worry, the thought of those changes being temporary also made me feel… something.

I walked in the door, through the lobby to the elevator, and pushed the button. I rode the elevator up, found the room whose number I had written down, and opened the door.

In the room was a desk, and sitting at the desk was a tall woman with small cat ears. She was wearing a name tag shaped like a cat head on a string around her neck that said "Molly, she/her". "Hi, you must be our new programmer, Mia?"

"Yes", I said.

"Hi, I'm Molly, the current team leader here. Tabby from HR told me you already know about us transforming into cats, is that right?"

"Yeah, that's a big part of why I applied here. The harder we work, the more we turn into cats, and once we're well-rested we turn back into humans, right?"

"Yeah, that's right. It's supposed to discourage overworking."

"But… what if I want to be a cat?"

"So do a lot of people when they start here, but a lot of our employees thought at first that they wanted to be a cat, but when faced with the real possibility of actually turning into a cat, they realized it wasn't actually a thing they wanted. It's inconvenient, and being fuzzy feels weird, or at least to me it does. Either way, I strongly recommend not working too much, not just because of the cat thing, but because your body needs rest. In any case, whatever you do, please don't work more than ten hours in a day."

"Why not? Does that mess with the transformation? Do we turn into a super-cat or a werewolf or wrap around and go back to being a human or does it become permanent or something?"

"No, no, nothing like that. You'll just get exhausted and your health will suffer, and ten hours a day is way more than enough to become fully feline. Which brings me to my next point. Our—" she hesitated for a second "'Magic Expewementation and Wesearch' team has developed a smartwatch app to monitor your felinity, and you can set alerts for when you're close to turning into a cat." She reached into a box behind her desk and pulled out a smartwatch. "The company gives every employee one of these. It's yours to keep."

"'We search'?" I asked.

"A cutesy way of saying 'research'. Mostly I think they just wanted to make the acronym work."

I thought of that annoying "oopsie woopsie uwu" error message, and I wondered if they were the sort to put that in the watch. Hopefully not; it's probably just, as she said, for the acronym. I put on the watch.

"Now, to see how feline your are, tap this icon, and—" she tapped an icon on my watch with a picture of a cat face on it. "Wait, what?" The watch showed a filled up bar with a few marks on it, and below it an empty bar with marks in the same places. The marks were labeled "human", "ears", "tail", "fur", "size", and "cat". "That's not supposed to happen. This top bar is supposed to tell you how feline you currently are, and the bar below it gives its estimate for how feline you'll be in an hour, but this says you're already completely a cat." She held down the power button on the watch and then pressed it again, and re-opened the app. "Nope, still not working. There must be something wrong with this one, and this is the only one I have to give you right now. I'll call MEW and see if they can get you a new watch, but it might take a week or so; they'll have to order a new batch of watches from the manufacturer and then enchant them."

"The watch malfunctioning isn't going to cause problems is it? Like, it's not going to transform me into some weird thing?"

"No, the watches can't transform you, they can only monitor your transformation. In the meantime, why don't I take you on a tour around our section of the building."

I followed Molly out the door.

She pointed to an open door. "This is the break room", she said. "That computer in the corner is set up to always have a text editor open, so if you need to communicate but you're unable to talk, you can type your message there, and meow at someone to get their attention, and other people can read it."

I peeked in and noticed, in addition to the computer, there was a scratching post and a cat food dispenser, as well as some people, cats, and cat people. I imagined myself as a cat, typing out misspelled messages with grammatically incorrect "iz" or making cat puns to amuse my coworkers. I wondered if they had that sort of sense of humor. Probably lots of people did that when they first came here, and they probably think it's old by now. Oh well. Even if I didn't do that, the thought of just hanging out there as a cat appealed to me for some reason.

She pointed to a set of two doors, each of which had a sign with a picture of a man, a woman, a person with half a dress, and a cat, and said, "Here are two of our bathrooms. All the bathrooms on this floor are handicat accessible; you can press this button", she gestured at a button near the floor with a picture of a cat paw, "to open the door, and there are buttons inside to lock and unlock the door, and these ones have litter boxes but the other ones on this floor don't. We ask all employees to put down the seat when they're done so that cats can use the toilet."

I started worrying a bit. That last part is only relevant for men. Does she know that I've been questioning my gender? I thought. Nah, probably just tells everyone that.

"Also, the left bathroom in each pair has a mirror and the right one doesn't, so gender dysphoric people don't have to look at their reflection," she said.

…or maybe she does know? In fact, I did usually avoid mirrors, to the point where I barely even knew how I looked.

Then we came to a table in the hall with a box full of name tags similar to the one she was wearing, with a couple of black markers next to it. "It's not a requirement, but we recommend that you make a name tag with your name and pronouns on it. It helps us identify you when you're fully a cat. Oh, and if you're trans—I don't know if you are, I just tell this to everyone, but if you are, you can put your preferred name, and if you're questioning or genderfluid, you're always welcome to take more name tags as needed. You don't have to worry about people judging you for it here, since about half the people here are trans."

"Half the people are trans? Is that because they want to try to use the magic here to transition?"

"I don't know, maybe. It used to be that when a trans person was catified it would change their sex as well, but that hasn't happened recently. MEW is trying to find out why that is; in fact, that's their main purpose, the watches were just a side thing. But also it seems like being into game dev and wanting to be a catgirl are both weirdly common among trans people, or at least they are in the communities I frequent, so that might also be why there are so many trans people here."

"Curious, have they made any progress? Do you know?"

"Not much. From what I've heard, they can't even figure out what part of the spell changed people's sex, and trying to make a spell that changes people's sex doesn't even work most of the time."

I took a name tag and hesitated. This was an awkward decision, since I still didn't know what my preferred pronouns were. About a year ago I'd come across some information online about trans issues, and some aspects of being a trans man almost seemed to have resonated with me but not quite. I'd always been disconnected from my body, and thought that something looked wrong with it, but couldn't place what. Also, I'd always had an interest in transformation, like many trans people I knew. My breasts seemed too big. My face seemed wrong. But I had no dysphoria about my name or pronouns, and while "woman" never felt right, thinking of myself as a "man" felt even wronger. Also, while the idea of having facial hair had appealed to me at first, I'd changed my mind when I realized that the hair would only be around my mouth region and not cover my entire face. I figured "non-binary" was the closest to how I currently felt (though I was not at all sure about this), and they seemed like a safe choice for neutral pronouns.

"Mia, they/them", I wrote. It felt a bit off. Should I have gotten a bit of gender euphoria from writing that? Maybe I wasn't non-binary after all? Whatever. They could be correct whatever my gender, and Molly said I could change it, so I shouldn't worry too much now. I put on the name tag, a bit worried that Molly would comment, but she just said, "Okay. Your office is this way."

I followed Molly down the hall a short distance, and she pointed to a door. I noticed the door had a cat flap in the bottom, though looking around it looked like the same was true for most of the doors there. "This office is yours. You're lucky! You have one of the coveted offices on the south side of the building, where you get the most sunbeams throughout the day. So, get settled, have a look at what we have so far of the game we're currently working on, and try to get yourself familiar with the code."

I stepped into the office and looked around. There was, in fact, a sunbeam on the floor, and near the window was a cat bed, a bit larger than normal but not quite big enough for a human. The cat bed and sunbeam made me feel weirdly nostalgic and weirdly at home, and I couldn't quite put my finger on why. Did I still miss the cat my family had when I was younger? Is that why this job appealed to me? Was I nostalgic for that period of time because my life was simpler then? I didn't know.

There was also a desk with a computer at it, and of course a chair, and I sat down and logged into the computer. I started up the game and tried playing it. It was an RPG with a transformation theme, where the character could be transformed into various animals and creatures by the enemies, and each transformation had advantages and disadvantages. Sort of like some of the Wario Land games, but an RPG. I played through what they had so far, and looked through the code, looked at their bug tracker for what I could be working on, and started working.

Chapter 2: Human

It was late in the evening Friday, my fifth day of working at Cali Co, and I'd just finished fixing an intermittent bug. When the tutorial boss cast a spell with a 100% success rate to transform the player, it would occasionally fail, but the game still acted as if it succeeded, leading to some weird effects. It just took one line of code to fix, I just had to properly initialize a variable storing the current transformation, but it had taken a few hours to figure out where the problem was.

I looked at the time. It was 6 PM, and I'd arrived at work at 8 AM, and hadn't even stopped for lunch. I'd worked ten hours each day this week, hoping that would turn me into a cat. While I wanted to work even more, I remembered what Molly had said about working more than ten hours and decided to leave.

On my way out, I went into the bathroom with the mirror, using the button to open the door (I didn't know why, it was just how I liked to do it) and looked at my reflection. I saw the same thing I had every day until now. Still fully human. No cat ears, no fur. At least I was starting to learn what I normally looked like, even if I disliked it and didn't feel any connection to it. I felt where my tail should be. Nope. I checked the smartwatch app. The lower bar had filled up completely the first day I was here, but other than that, nothing had changed since that first day. Why am I not a cat yet?, I thought.

As I stepped out of the bathroom, I saw a person standing there and let out a surprise "Meow!" I'd thought I was the only one working late today. It was just Molly, though her cat ears were much larger than they had been on Monday, and she now had a tail.

"Oh! Molly?" I said.

"Yes?" she said.

"How long does it usually take to become a cat?"

"It depends; how hard have you been working?"

"Ten hours a day, no breaks."

"At that rate, it usually takes less than two days."

"And is there anything that would prevent it from working? Like, if someone was spending their time debugging rather than actually writing new code? Or if the person enjoys their job enough to not consider it work?"

"No. Plenty of people here spend their time debugging and playtesting, and plenty of people here like their jobs, and they still turn into cats. There have been days when I spent the whole day just playing the game mostly for fun and calling it 'playtesting', and I still got cat ears. Not that I think everyone playtesting the game is just doing it for fun."

"And wanting to be a cat doesn't prevent it from working?"

"No. You're far from the only person here who's overworked themself on purpose to become a cat. When I first started here, I wanted so hard to see what it was like being a cat that I worked every day until I was too feline to type, and I did become a cat but I was so exhausted all the time that I never really got to do much as a cat but sleep. Many people here have done similar things. That's why I warned you not to overwork. I don't know why you're not a cat yet."

Oh no, I realized, people become cats really easily and she sees that I'm not a cat. Could that mean… "Do you think I'm slacking off at work?" I asked.

"No! For one thing, the whole point is that you're not supposed to work hard enough to become a cat. For another, I've seen your code, and I've seen you work. I know you're very definitely not slacking off. They're closed now, but on Monday, I can ask MEW what's going on if you want. Your new smartwatch is supposed to come then anyways."

I felt relieved that she didn't think I was slacking off, and I wondered if I gave the impression that was why I was asking. It wasn't the reason; I really just did want to know why I wasn't a cat yet. Is there something wrong with the magic? With my office? With my work? I thought. Or is there something wrong with me?

Chapter 3: Things Go Wrong

I had just come to work on Monday, and I was exhausted from working fourteen hours each day on Saturday and Sunday. I checked myself in the mirror in the bathroom again. Still human. I was wearing a headband with fake cat ears on it, a comfort item that I'd gotten before I started at Cali Co and wore when I was particularly stressed. Normally it calmed me down, and I'd gotten a couple compliments on it on the way in, but looking at it in the mirror now it just looked fake, and it almost seemed like they emphasized my human traits even more in contrast. I took it off.

As I walked to my office, I walked past a cat, and looked at his name tag. He was Bob, another programmer who I'd seen working through the weekend, though yesterday he'd been mostly human. Another day I might have thought he was cute as a cat. Today, though, all I could think was Why? Why does he get to be a cat and I don't?

I went into my office. The cat bed and the sunbeam that had once made me feel at home now seemed like they were taunting me, showing me everything I couldn't have. I still had a bit of hope, though, maybe today would be the day I'd finally transform.

I sat down and opened up what I had been working on. It was a zombie transformation, and I had been modifying the code so that if you used a health potion while zombified, it would hurt you, sort of a variant on the standard RPG trope. I felt like a zombie from overwork and lack of sleep. I tried to remind myself of why I was doing this, tried to think of how good it would feel once I'd worked enough to become a cat, and could just lie down in that cat bed in a sunbeam and purrzzzzzzz…

"Mia?" A voice startled me out of my sleep and I meowed in surprise. I looked up at the door. Molly was standing there, but she looked even taller than she usually did. It felt much colder in the room than usual. "Your new smartwatch ca—What happened to you?"

I looked down at my hands. They looked like cat paws, but completely hairless. I felt my face. My ears hadn't changed at all, no new cat ears had grown, but the rest of my face felt different. Still no fur, though, besides what was on top of my head. I looked at the smartwatch app. The top bar was still full like it always was, but the lower bar was now around "fur". Weird. I looked back at Molly and saw she was doing something on her watch.

"Have you been using any transformation besides the standard one from working here? You won't get in trouble; I just want to make sure nothing is going horribly wrong."

I tried to say "no", but all that came out was "meow". I shook my head.

"Then something weird must be going on. Paws and face are supposed to be the last thing to transform, after ears, tail, and fur, not the first. I'll call MEW. We may have to go there physically to find out what's going on; they have more equipment there. It's a long way, but I can drive you. In the meantime, you should get some rest."

With a bit of difficulty, I opened a new text document and attempted to type, but my paws were too big and ended up hitting multiple keys at once. "weqhhere is iugtr"

"Where is it? It's just outside the city. They wanted a completely separate building far away from everything so they wouldn't accidentally transform anyone, since the spell they started with has a relatively large area of effect and they weren't sure if they could contain it."

"has thisada hsaapopeened tro aaaanmyutonnew elsade"

"Has this happened to anyone else? Not that I know of, at least not on this floor. I checked on everyone else earlier today, and everyone else seems to be normal. Any other questions?"

I shook my head. It's not so much that I didn't have questions, but typing with paws was difficult, and it seemed she was as confused as I was, so she probably didn't have answers. I thought about going to the break room, but I probably looked like some freakish cat-human abomination, and figured even here I'd probably get strange looks and unwanted questions, and I really didn't feel like dealing with that at the moment. It did feel a bit better with my body more catlike, though. I curled up on the cat bed and tried to rest a bit, but I was too worried to go to sleep.

Chapter 4: MEW

The MEW building was in the middle of a large, grassy field, completely outside of even the suburbs. It looked like it was only one or two stories tall, but it was large horizontally. The outside looked like it was made of some sort of metal, and it didn't have many windows. As we walked up to the front door, I noticed a big warning sign on it that said

Magic Expewementation and Wesearch

Warning! Twansformation hazard!

Do not enter without authowization

Do not wet any unauthowized animals into the building

Pwegnant people should not enter the building

I realized now that I'd only recently met Molly, and it was probably not safe going with her to some remote location like this, but I didn't have much choice. They were the only ones who had a chance of being able to reverse what the building had done to me. I went inside.

"This way", said Molly, and led me into a room. Inside the room was a person who looked to me like a man, wearing a red shirt and a name tag that said "Ari, they/them (nyan-binary!)", the same kind of name tag that they had back at the office. There were also two computers, one of which looked like it was the same model as the computer in the break room, and there was a big red button connected to the other computer. On the floor was a device that looked like a scale in a doctor's office, but with a computer screen, and also a big mirror resting against the wall. I looked at my reflection. Human skin, human ears, human hair, but a cat face, smaller than I had been but still more human-sized than cat-sized. I looked really weird. Then again, I thought I looked weird as a human. Was this better or worse? I couldn't tell. Maybe both?

"Hewwo!" said Ari. "I'm Awi, head of MEW. You must be Mia?"

I nodded.

"Here, you can use this computer if you can't talk", they said, and gestured towards the computer that looked like the break room computer. "Awso, I apowogize for my speech impediment." I suddenly felt bad for associating "wesearch" with horrible internet memes. I wondered if whoever named the department was making fun of Ari, and I felt sorry for them.

As I started to type, I noticed the keys were bigger than those of a normal keyboard, and I could press them much more easily with my paws. "Thanks", I typed. I had instinctively pressed Shift before realizing it would be hard to press two keys at once, but it seemed the computer allowed me to press them one at a time. For once, Sticky Keys was useful to me, rather than just an annoying pop-up that appeared when I idly pressed Shift too many times. I also noticed there were autocomplete suggestions listed at the bottom of the screen, each assigned to one of the F keys. Maybe lolcats aren't bad at English, they just need more accessible computers, I thought.

"So, let me make sure I understand this correctly", said Ari. "The watch told you you were already transformed into a cat your first day, then you worked hard and you did not transform, but today you fell asleep and did start to transform, but ended up like this instead of a human with cat ears."

"Yeah, like the transformation is working backwards for me. But also the watch still says I'm fully transformed." I thought back to the zombie transformation I was programming. Health potions worked backwards on zombies because they were already dead. Could I be…?

No, I thought, that's not possible. I know who my parents are, I'm not adopted, and they'd tell me if I weren't human… right? But if I'm a cat, but was born looking like a human, then… I was reminded of how transphobic trolls tended to talk about identifying as things other than genders. If trans-cat were a thing, if I were to say I was trans-cat…

Ari interrupted my thoughts. "And Molly, did you check if anything was weird with the magic? Did the spell change?"

"Yes", said Molly. "I checked before we left. The spell hasn't changed, there were no other spells in her office, I checked on everyone, and I told Katie to keep an eye on everyone and call you if anything happens. Did you get a call?"

"No. Not yet, though you should probably call her, just to make sure nothing happened to her", said Ari, then they turned to me. "The goddesses who made the cat spell sometimes change how it works, so we programmed the watch app to monitor when that happens. The goddess currently in charge of it said she wouldn't change it until we figured out the issues we were working on, but we want to be sure. Anyhow, this device", Ari gestured at the scale, "can measure magical enchantments. Could you step on there, and we'll see if anything looks out of the ordinary."

I stepped on the scale. The screen showed the same thing that the watch had, but I noticed Ari was looking at their computer. "Okay, it's done, you can get off now," they said. "It'll take a few minutes to run the full analysis."

Molly said, "So you think it is a goddess who made the spell? I've heard a few different things from different people."

"Yeah, I've talked to her. Well, one of them, anyways. The original goddess had apparently left, and her replacement tried to restructure the spell's code to make it easier to have multiple enchantments at once, but she ended up accidentally breaking the part of the spell that causes trans women to turn into catgirls instead of cat boys. That's when she came to our team and gave us this equipment and asked us to debug the spell."

"Curious, have you made much progress yet?" I said

"Well… we looked at the code for the spell, and through the source control repository, and haven't found anything at all that has to do with gender. As far as I can tell, we're trying to figure out why a feature that never should have worked in the first place stopped working. We've also tried creating a spell to turn people into girls, but that didn't work and we couldn't figure out why. Just didn't do anything, at least on anyone we intentionally tried it on."

Ari clicked a few things on their computer, and scrolled a bit. "Ugh, this doesn't tell me much we didn't already know. It says you're 100% cat, that you're overworked enough to be 78% cat, which is…" Ari looked at me for a second. "…basically the exact opposite of what you are now, ears and fur and tail but still general human shape." They scrolled a bit more. "Wait, what's this? 78% human? Usually that number stays 100% even when you're transformed." Ari thought for a few seconds. "The code that removes the enchantment removes all species-based enchantments. Were you born human? I hope you don't mind me asking that."

"I thought so, but I've just been wondering that myself."

"Well, this red button on my desk will remove all enchantments from everyone in the room. I installed it here in case of emergencies. If my theory is right, then this will permanently turn you into a cat, but we should be able to make a spell to temporarily turn you back into a human. Are you okay with that?"

I felt a bit nervous but also excited. I wanted to turn into a cat, I thought. I never knew why, and I always assumed that if I actually did turn into a cat I wouldn't like it. But if magic says I am… I mean, this will only change me if I'm right, so… "Yes."

Ari pressed the button, and I saw a blinding flash of light. I looked around me. Everything looked way bigger. I looked in the mirror. A cat! A yellow cat. Yellow? Not a color I was used to cats being, but otherwise I looked like a normal cat. I felt… something. Like a weight that I didn't know was there had been lifted. I expected to cry, but no tears came. Crying always felt weird to me, somehow, so this was welcome. I started purring. I can purr! It felt so good!

"I've always wanted to press that", said Ari, though their voice sounded a bit higher and slightly more feminine.

I looked up at Ari. Their face looked a bit less masculine than it had, and their skin looked yellower. Come to think of it, weren't they wearing a red shirt when I came in? It was yellow now. Then I remembered… cats are colorblind. Or, at least, they're more colorblind than humans; I could still see some colors. I knew this would be a disadvantage, I knew I might never get to experience some colors again, but still… somehow it felt right anyways.

"Wait, what?" said Ari. They looked at Molly, and I looked at Molly and noticed her face also looked a bit more feminine. Ari bent down and looked in the mirror. "That's why trans women turned into catgirls! The magic saw them as female, so it interpreted their male body as an enchantment and removed it. I still have some experiments to do, but I think I can figure this out!"

Chapter 5: Purr

I arrived with Molly back at my office. I was still tired from overwork, plus a lot had happened, so I went to my cat bed and lay down. The sun was out, and the sunbeam was right on the bed, and it felt nice and warm. I started to purr.

Molly looked at me for a few seconds, seemingly thinking about something, and then said "Our company's policy says that if you've been transformed, you don't have to work until you turn back into a human, so… that means you're free to stay employed here without doing anything. There's cat food in the break room, and most of the shops on the lower floors are cat-friendly. I don't know if that's what you want to do, though, if you want to keep working here, or go somewhere else, or what. Whatever it is you want, we can try to arrange it."

Right, I thought. I'm a cat, but now what? I still need to decide what to actually do with my life. I meowed indecisively.

"Well, you don't have to decide now. In the meantime, I'll get you a larger keyboard like they have in the break room, in case you want to continue working or browse the internet or communicate or something. We don't normally put them in individual employee offices since we don't want to encourage people to continue working when they're overworked enough to become a cat, but you're clearly an exception."

I walked over to Molly and rubbed up against her leg, still purring. Molly pet my back. It felt nice. I closed my eyes a bit. "Nice kitty", she said. I was being treated like a cat! I purred some more.

She left the room, and I noticed a fly buzzing in. I batted lazily in the direction of the fly a couple times, and it flew away. I walked back to my cat bed.

I want to continue working here, I thought, as I started to fall asleep on the cat bed. Yes, I wanted to be a cat, but I also like programming, I like game design. I like debugging things and figuring things out and making them work… even if I did just fail at debugging the room just now. And I like the game they're making and want to see it completed.

I woke up and looked around at my surroundings, trying to remember where I was, and why I wasn't at home. I was in my office. The room was a bit darker, and the sunbeam had moved from where I was to the wall, and now it was yellow. I looked down at my paw. It was still covered in yellow fur. I'm a cat! I thought. That wasn't a dream. I'm a cat! Meow!

I walked over to the computer and noticed that the new keyboard had arrived and already been connected. I logged in and saw a message on the company chat system from "Ari (@awi)". I noticed they were still logged in; maybe they were working late. Does MEW have the same cat spell? I wondered, Have they started turning into a cat?

"Hi, just wanted to check that you were doing okay", they had sent.

"purr", I replied. I still needed to set up Sticky Keys; I knew how to do that, and would get around to it after this conversation.

"Good. I told the goddess about my discovery, and she said that it makes sense. If all goes well, the bug in the spell should be fixed in a couple of days. By the way, if you don't mind me asking, are you now male or female or enby?", they replied.

"still female." I thought back through my thoughts from when I was questioning my gender. Smaller breasts? Female cats don't have the large breasts humans do. Facial hair? Fur! Generally looking wrong? It's because I looked human. At some point I'd have to get someone to fix my name tag to say "she/her". "oh, by the way, whoever named mew... were they making fun of you?"

"No. Well, kind of. I named it myself, so I'm sort of making fun of myself." Well, that at least made the name of MEW seem a bit less awkward.

I continued working at Cali Co, coding parts of the game and fixing bugs when I could. I no longer overworked myself as I had that first week, but I did do about as much work as any other employee. Being a colorblind cat also helped me on occasion notice things in the game that were only distinguished by color and fix those.

Ari was right; the spell was fixed in a couple of days. It turned out "half the people here are trans" was an underestimate; I started to wonder if I was the only cis person there. Was it, as Molly had said, that trans people are into cats and game design? Or was it, as I had thought, because they wanted to use the magic to transition? Or was it because someone on a trans community somewhere recommended this company? I never really found out.

The Cali Co building was basically now my home, since I couldn't drive and the bus probably wouldn't let a cat on, but I didn't mind. All of my friends were people I knew online, and I could still talk with them; after all, on the internet, nobody knows you're a cat. There was plenty of food, the cat bed was comfortable, and the building was, as Molly had called it, more "handicat accessible" than her home. And there were other cats around. I had finally found where I belonged.