Now that she was back to her normal size, traversing the forest's one path was no problem for Cindy. And with the tiny but still quite talkative Amy fluttering beside her on beautiful butterfly wings, the trip was anything but boring. Cindy asked her small companion many questions concerning where they were and why everything was so weird, but Amy would simply respond like everything was as it had been for as long as she could remember.
On more than one occasion, Cindy could've sworn she was being watched. However whenever she would look around, she'd find nothing. One time she thought she saw what appeared to be a wide grin floating in the air, but by the time she rubbed her eyes it was gone. “Must just be seeing things” she told herself, still more than a little baffled over what had to be the strangest day of her life.
Finally, after a full hour of walking, Cindy reached the clearing at the edge of the woods. She could've sworn the clearing didn't seem this far away when she was gigantic. But even if this forest had somehow magically extended, it would still be the least strange thing she'd seen today. Spotting a house in the middle of the clearing, Cindy hurried toward it, easily able to skip over the properties front gate. Mostly because it barely reached her knees. Upon reaching the two story house, Cindy let out a little giggle at the rather tiny building. She knew she was back to her normal size and yet the top of this house just barely reached her elbows.
“Well?” Amy questioned as she fluttered next to Cindy's ear, something she just barely matched in size. “Go ahead and knock. I'm sure he's home.”
“Oh, right” Cindy said before taking a step back, crouching down and giving the door a gentle few taps with one knuckle. “Let's just hope Leo doesn't freak out when he sees me like this.”
“He's seen worse” Amy assured, Cindy silently agreeing as she thought back to the series of wacky nonsense that happened to her and Leo those two years ago.
“Coming, one second please” Leo's voice echoed from within the house. A few moments later, the front door was opened and the one foot tall Leo stepped out, only to immediately stop when he noticed a pair of enormous black shoes, black and white striped stockings covering the huge legs sprouting out of them. Fear immediately gripped Leo and a nervous sweat began to pour down his face as he slowly forced his gaze upward. However, his fear immediately vanished when he saw a familiar gentle face smiling down at him. “Oh Cindy... It's only you.”
“Hello Leo” Cindy said in the kindest and most caring voice she could muster. “I would ask if I could come in... But in my current state...”
Leo crossed his arms and raised an eyebrow. “Well first of all, you wouldn't have to ask” he assured. “This is your home too you know. Second, We can easily fix this 'little' problem of yours.”
“We can?” Cindy questioned, Leo answering with a nod before heading inside, telling Cindy just to wait right there.
Leo reemerged from his home a minute later when a small cup of what appeared to be tea in his hand. “Here beautiful, just drink this” he said, holding up the cup to Cindy, who was now blushing a little thanks to Leo's little compliment.
Unsure she would be able to even touch the tiny cup without breaking it, Cindy lowered herself onto her stomach, putting her face right in front of Leo and puckering her lips. However, rather than pour the drink into her mouth, Leo gave Cindy a quick kiss, causing her cheeks to turn an even brighter shade of red.
Letting out a little snicker at the sight of his girlfriend's huge embarrassed face, Leo gently poured a little of the tea into Cindy's mouth. “There we go” he said as not two seconds after Cindy swallowed the tea, her body began to rapidly decrease in size, shrinking all the way down so that she and Leo were the right sizes relative to each other. “Back to normal size.”
“Pretty sure I was already normal size and you were just tiny” Cindy thought to herself before accepting Leo's hand and being pulled back to her feet. “Thank you Leo” she said with a smile.
Leo gave Cindy a quick hug before heading inside once again. “Now that that's all taken care of, and Jasmine is with the sitter, we can finally get ready” he said eagerly.
“Ready for what?” Cindy asked, just as Amy landed on her shoulder, who now looked like a small child when compared to Cindy's new diminished size.
“What else?” Leo questioned as Cindy entered the house. “Today's date is a very important one. If we don't hurry, we're going to be late.”
Cindy remembered Leo shouting he was 'Late for a very important date' earlier while he was running around in the real world. But what could he be referring to exactly? Cindy felt like there was something special about today, it was the very reason she went out for her jog so early in the morning, so she would have time later. But what was it? Did falling into this world make her forget? “Amy” she said as Leo disappeared into another room, turning her head toward her tiny friend. “What's this 'important date' Leo is talking about?”
Amy seemed stunned. “How could you not know what today is?” she asked, a genuine look of confusion on her face. “I'm pretty sure everyone in the land knows what today is.”
Before Cindy could ask Amy to clarify what she meant, Leo came back. “Alright Cindy, I just need to find my white gloves and we'll be able to go” he said. “Do you mind helping me look for them? You know how bad I am at leaving them in random spots.”
“Sure thing Leo” Cindy said with a smile before turning her attention toward the nearby set of stairs. “I'll try upstairs while you search this floor.”
“Sounds good” Leo said before hurrying back through the door he came from. “Let's look quick though. We really have to go soon.”
Despite still not knowing what today was, Cindy hurried upstairs. Maybe there she could ask Amy in private to explain things a little better. Upon reaching the second floor, Cindy entered the closest room, finding it to be a large bedroom, possibly hers and Leo's. Needing a sit after such a long walk through the woods, Cindy flopped onto the bed to rest her aching feet. Amy meanwhile began to fly around the room, looking for Leo's gloves. After taking a deep breath to help herself relax, Cindy stared up at the roof, the question of 'What the heck was going on here?' cemented in the forefront of her mind. Suddenly, a loud rumble filled the room, emanating from Cindy's stomach.
“Hungry?” Amy asked the embarrassed Cindy, despite already getting a pretty clear answer. When Cindy nodded, Amy pointed to a small chest sitting on the beside desk. “There's some snacks there. Have one or two of those.”
Cindy sat up and opened the chest, finding it full of colorful cookies of various shapes. “Oh, don't mind if I do” she said before snatching up one of the cookies and throwing it into her mouth, not even noticing the words 'Eat Me' written on the snack. Remembering she'd come up here to look for Leo's gloves, Cindy lowered herself to the floor, got on her hands and knees. “Might as well start looking here.” she thought before sticking her head under the bed.
“Where could he have left them...” Amy mumbled to herself and she looked through several draws. Curious if Cindy was having better luck than her, Amy glanced over to her friend, only for one of her eyebrows to stick up when Cindy's body slowly began to expand outward in all directions. “Here we go again...”
“What did you say Amy?” Cindy asked, her growing head banging against the underside of the bed. Letting out a little grunt, Cindy tried to pull her head out from under the bed, only for it to tip the entire bed over. Immediately sitting up, Cindy immediately noticed her rapidly increasing stature. “Oh no... Not again.” Turning around, Cindy managed to face herself toward the door just as the top of her head began to press against the roof.
Not wanting to be stuck in a room about to be filled to it's brim, Amy zipped out the door so quickly it closed behind her.
As she continued to grow bigger and bigger, Cindy tried to cuddle her limbs in so they wouldn't knock over everything in the room. This worked for about ten seconds. After that, she was already mere moments away from occupying one hundred percent of her and Leo's bedroom.
Leo meanwhile stood at the bottom of the stairway, waiting eagerly for Cindy to return with his gloves. However, when the only thing that came down the stairs was a panicked Amy, Leo swiftly ran up them, worried something had happened to Cindy. “Cindy?!” he called out as he reached his bedroom's door. “Are you alright?!” So worried about his beloved safety, Leo didn't even notice the door was being pushed from the other side, bending so much it was a surprise it's hinges didn't snap from the frame. Yanking the door open, Leo was greeted by the bottom of Cindy's shoe, which by now was the same size as the door itself. Before Leo even had a chance to react, Cindy's foot came barreling out of the door, her leg growing so much it pushed Leo all the way down the stairs and out the front door, sending the poor man tumbling across his front yard. By the time Leo picked himself back up, he found his home now had a pair of gargantuan legs sticking out of the first floor, while two equally gigantic arms had burst out of the opposite sides of the second floor.
Fortunately for her and Leo, it appeared Cindy's sudden growth had finally ceased, but not in time to stop her from completely destroying the inside of the building. “Seriously?” Cindy groan as she scratched the house's straw roof as if it was her hair.
“Hold on Cindy!” Leo called out as he swiftly circled his home. “If I can just get inside I'll be able to give you more of that tea! If it hasn't spilled all over the floor that is...” Unfortunately, no matter which door or window he opened, Leo found every entrance blocked by Cindy's colossal body. “How do I... Amy!” Quickly glancing around, Leo spotted Amy fluttering in the air above his home, an annoyed look on her face. “Amy! Hey Amy!”
Amy eagerly flew down to Leo, landing on top of the man's head. “Yes Leo?” she asked in a giddy tone as she laid down on her back.
“Think you can squeeze inside and get something for me?” Leo asked.
Quickly, Amy circled the house, hoping the find a way in. Within a few moments she returned to Leo with a nervous expression. “I found a way in but...”
“But?” Leo questioned.
“The chimney is really dark and dirty...” Amy muttered while twiddling her fingers together. “It would ruin my new wings if I flew down there.” A smile soon returned to Amy's face. “But don't worry. I'm sure you can fit down there easily Leo.”
“Oh really?” Leo grumbled with a raised eyebrow, eventually letting out a sigh. “Fine, fine... I'll get my ladder.” Quickly retrieving the ladder in his shed, Leo propped it against the side of his house without a giant Cindy limb sprouting from it. “Just hold on Cindy! I'll get you back to normal soon!”
From within Leo's home, Cindy tried to see what was going on, peering out of a nearby window with one eye. “I'm sorry Leo...” she said, keeping her limbs as still as she could. “I keep ending up like this...”
“Don't worry about it Cindy” Leo said as gently as he could as he stepped onto his roof. “It's nothing we can't get through together. Just hold still and I'll fix this.” Reaching the chimney, Leo carefully lowered himself down into it. Unfortunately, Leo quickly got himself wedged the instant the top of the chimney reached his shoulders. “Oh come on...”
“Leo?” Cindy questioned. “Are you okay?”
“Leo!” Amy gasped as she fluttered above the stuck Leo. “What happened?!”
“You're sure I could fit down here eh?” Leo grumbled as he gave Amy an irritated scowl.
“Don't worry, I'll help” Amy assured, thinking for a few moments before coming up with an idea. Summoning all of her might, Amy dove toward Leo feet first, stomping down on the stuck man's head. When that failed to move Leo even an inch, Amy started to jump up and down on Leo's head. “Just a moment and you'll be down there.”
“Amy, knock it-” was as far as Leo got before the tiny Amy gave him one final stomp, sending Leo zipping down the chimney. In a second, Leo came crashing down into his fireplace with enough force to cause a cloud of dust and ash to explode out from it, filling his home in a matter of seconds. “Oww...”
“Leo?” Cindy questioned as she tried to find the fireplace. However before she even had a chance to spot the fireplace or Leo, the ash cloud reached her face and flew up her nose. “Ah... Ah, ah... Ah, ah, ah...” Cindy tried her best to hold in the sneeze building in her nose, managing to force it down. Unfortunately, all this did was cause the sneeze to explode back out in a single mighty moment. “AH CHOO!”
The sheer power behind the sneeze not only cleansed the house of the ash cloud, it also sent Leo soaring back up the chimney, causing the poor man to be rocketed out of it like a cannon, disappearing over the horizon in a matter of seconds.
“Leo!” Amy cried out in a panic. “Oh no! I have to do something!” Knowing she had no other choice, Amy zipped down the chimney, which was now much cleaner thanks to Cindy's sneeze.
“Amy?!” Cindy gasped, still recovering from her titanic sneeze as Amy fluttered in front of her face. “What happened? Where's Leo?”
“He's in trouble again, thanks to you” Amy growled as she frantically searched what little of the house Cindy wasn't currently filling. “So you're going to have to go after him.” A second later, Amy spotted the kettle wedged in between Cindy's thigh and the wall. Using all of her strength, Amy managed to yank the kettle free and carry it up to Cindy's face, despite it being at least double her size. “Here...” she groaned, her arms feeling like they were about to snap. “Drink it... Quick...”
Pushing her lips forward as much as she could, Cindy managed to take a few giant-sized sips of the tea. A second later, her body quickly shrank down, her limbs retreating into the house like a turtle retracting into it's shell. Within a few moments Cindy was back to a normal size, when compared to Leo's small house, and sitting in the middle of a now barely standing house.
“Come on!” Amy shouted as she flew around Cindy's head. “Get up! Get up! Leo needs your help!”
“Right” Cindy said as she sprang to her feet. “Did you see which way he went?”
Amy answered with a nervous chuckle before pointing in what seemed like a random direction.
After half an hour of walking through the woods in the direction she hoped would lead her to Leo, Cindy began to panic. “Leo... I'm so sorry” she thought, clasping her hands together as she kept walking forward. “Please be okay.”
“Having trouble?” a voice familiar to both Cindy and Amy asked in a playful tone.
Immediately, both women glanced up in the direction of the voice, Amy looking a lot more irritated than Cindy. Floating atop a branch was two small feline eyes and a wide white grin. A few moments later the rest of the creature appeared, piece by piece. Now laying atop a branch was a cat, a bright purple cat with a familiarly shaped bright orange hair on it's head. “Go away Kip” Amy growled as she glared at the cat's rather unsettling human grin.
“So mean” the kitty pouted as she stretched out her backside. “And here I was about to help you two find whatever it was you're looking for. What exactly were you looking for anyway?”
“We're trying to find Leo” Cindy answered quickly, hoping Kip could help. “Kip, we could really use your help. Have you seen him? Do you have any idea where he could be?”
“Do I have any idea where Leo could be...” Kip mumbled to herself as she tilted her head, eventually twisting her neck it so much her face was upside down. “That is quite the question... I'll have to think about it...”
“Just tell us you stupid cat!” Amy snapped as she stomped her foot on Cindy's shoulder. “We don't have time for your games Kip.”
Kip quickly turned her head back into a normal position, only for the rest of her body to spin upside down. “Fine, fine...” she giggled before using her limbs and tail to point in five different directions. “Leo went that way.”
Amy was not amused. “Not helping Kip...” she growled through her teeth.
Kip's eyes lit up for a second as her body finally twisted itself back to it's proper angle. “Oh, you want my help” she gasped before sitting up. “Well why didn't you say so?”
“We did...” Amy growled.
“Please Kip, do it for me” Cindy begged with the saddest eyes she could muster. “You've never let me down before.”
“True, true” Kip giggled, her head rolling from her shoulders and into her lap a second later. “Fine, just give me a moment to think.” After giving her head a few scratches, purrs escaping her lips with each scratch. “Oh yes, I remember now.” Kip turned her head to the left. “He went that way.”
“He did?” Cindy gasped, a smile returning to her face.
“He did what?” Kip asked.
“Went that way” Cindy said, pointing in the same direction Kip had just mentioned.
“Who did?” Kip asked, the amused grin still on her face.
“Leo” Cindy said, Amy growing more and more annoyed with every word Kip spoke.
“Who's that?” Kip asked.
“Enough!” Amy roared, her tiny voice shaking and silencing the surrounding woods. “Forget her Cindy. Let's just go ask my sister. She'll know where Leo is.”
Kip let out a snicker as she plopped her head back onto her neck. “Oh fantastic idea” she said. “Ask your mad sister for directions. I'm sure that will go well.”
“Mad sister?” Cindy questioned with a raised eyebrow.
“It's not so strange” Kip giggled as she cartwheeled onto another branch. “We're all a little mad here. Although I'd like to point out I'm the least mad person in this land.”
“She's not mad” Amy assured in an annoyed sigh. “She just likes hats a little more than most others.” Amy fluttered in front of Cindy's face. “Besides, you trusted her enough to let her and Kyle babysit Jasmine so you know she's perfectly sane.” As a worried look appeared on Cindy's face, Amy pointed down a nearby path. “Morgan lives nearby. Come on, I'll take you to her.”
“Alright” Cindy said. “But lets hurry.” Cindy glanced up to Kip and smiled before bowing her head. “We're heading off Kip. I'll see you back at home later.”
“Oh... You'll see me before then” Kip giggled as her body slowly began to disappear, one inch at a time. “Way before then...” Eventually there was nothing left of Kip but her eyes and a grin. “Keep an eye out for Leo. He'll need your help I'm sure.”
As Kip disappeared completely, Amy shook her head. “I'm seriously getting sick of her. Why do you let her live at your apartment anyway?”
“She's not so bad” Cindy assured as she began to follow Amy down the trail. “Sure she might take things a little too far every now and then... But really, she just ends up playing around a little too much.”
“Only a little?” Amy grumbled to herself.
TO BE CONTINUED....