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Market Research
By Luprand   |   Watch
5 2 230 (1 Today)
Published: October 14, 2016
© 2016 - 2019 Luprand
Lunch time. The most wonderful time of day for some college students, not least of which Renard de Fleureax, a very proper southern lion-wolf. (Or at least, Floridian, which sometimes counts.) He was more than happy to dump his backpack on the floor by a table in a secluded and surprisingly underdecorated corner of the student center before heading toward the food court to choose a repast worthy of his consideration.

Only, when his books hit the floor, they were swiftly attacked by a monstrous furry snake covered in virulent blue stripes! ... scratch that. Rather, on further inspection, they were swiftly wrapped around by multiple coils of the longest and most ridiculously thick feline tail he'd ever seen. "Oh!" said the owner of said tail, if only by virtue of being approximately the same color. "Oh, good ... I was hoping I could find someone to take this survey ... er, if you don't mind? See, uh, my name's North Cheshire, and I work for a company that distributes Enjoy Me-brand comestibles and we're looking to see what people want more of ..."

Renard hesitated. Mammals were generally not known for being covered in psychedelic blue stripes, and surveyors were generally not known for wearing excessively baggy clothing on their tiny and vaguely adorable frames. Furthermore, Cheshire-cats were generally not known for leaving well enough alone. On the other hand, the diminutive feline was holding a clipboard, which anyone can tell is the international symbol for authority ... and he was giving his winningest smile and offering to provide a sandwich without any magical effects in exchange.

And that was how the hybrid found himself seated on that coiled tail, tucking into a turkey-on-pumpernickel while he answered the opening boilerplate questions: Name, Age, Biological Sex, Preferred Gender, Height, Weight, Preferred Height, Build, Contact Information, Species, Preferred Species, Daily Caloric Intake, Current Major, Dream Job, Square Root of 81, Current Capital of Yugoslavia, Preferred Capital of Yugoslavia, Are You Sure You're Paying Attention ... and that's when the questions got weird - or at least the ones he noticed.

The questions seemed to fly past in a blur now, and the answers came unbidden, even to queries like "13. Are there any body parts of yours that you wish were larger, smaller, more shapely, or green?" or "27. Have you ever daydreamed about sumo wrestling an entire continental plate?" He barely stumbled at all over "43. If you were stranded on a desert island, what sport would you play with your loneliness-induced hallucinations?" (Calvinball, naturally.) And "83.5. Have you ever had the sneaking suspicion that your tail is in fact a hastily-drawn last-minute insert?" barely seemed to register as strange.

By the end of his lunch hour, Renard was reeling ... he felt like the little cat had gone through every wrinkle of his brain with a fine-tipped cotton swab. But the survey seemed to come to a close just as he swallowed the last bite of the sandwich and washed it down with the remainder of whatever soda had accompanied it - with plenty of time to get to his next class. He grabbed the after-lunch mint just in time to see North give a little wave.

"Thanks again, and have a great day!" The fun-size feline gave a bashful grin and ... was no longer there.
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Comments (2)
colbyfromage's avatar
colbyfromage|Hobbyist Digital Artist
Okay so... I would refuse to answer Square Root of 81 and demand the question be reframed to ask for the fourth root because that's just untidy. 
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Luprand|Hobbyist General Artist
Cube root of 27 would be tidier still, come to think on it.

I guess I could retro-justify it as a hidden test of the respondent's intelligence (whether they think to reply "positive or negative nine") and willingness to show off (whether they say it aloud).
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