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*Kathalia's gallery was an interesting one.  Like many others on DeviantART, the majority of it was dedicated to a particular interest, or "fetish" as they're sometimes called.  In her case, it was human-to-animal transformation.

However, she also had a few original characters, among them her muse.  When the D virus infected *Kathalia's profile, it analyzed her gallery for a moment before deciding on an attack strategy that reflected her unique set of interests.

For starters, there would be no D-beasts, not a single one, roaming the artist's worlds.  At least, not at first...

"I don't know, Kath.  It just feels like we've been here for almost a year without doing anything."

The Dragon's Flask tavern wasn't particularly populated that day.  Kathalia (not to be confused with *Kathalia, her creator) and her companion Gwaeron were two of about a dozen customers.  The two of them shared a small table at the far side of the tavern.

"You just feel that way because you're anxious to get out of here and go on an adventure.  We got here only five minutes ago."

"Kathalia Verkatzen?"

The redhead looked up.  "That's me... but how did..."

It was one of the tavern's waitresses.  She gently set a stein of something in front of Kathalia.

"Another customer ordered this for you.  It's a stein of Emerald Wheat.  He said you looked like you needed it... then he ran off before I could get his name."

Kathalia didn't know what to think.  Emerald Wheat was the most exquisite and expensive beer on the tavern's menu, but it did seem a little odd that someone would order it for her and then vanish.

...Then again, I have no rivals ignoble enough to stoop to poisoning a drink.  Bottoms up!

Gwae looked on in obvious jealousy as Kathalia brought the stein to her lips, letting the liquid inside pass into her throat.  The beer's reputation was anything but inaccurate; it had the perfect blend of ingredients to put a smile on her face, and she could already feel her worries dissolving away.

"How is it, Kath?"

Kathalia put the stein down.  "It's... it's the best thing I've ever tasted."

"Can I have a sip?"

"The only thing more dangerous and chaotic than a drunken person is a drunken sorceress.  I think I'd better keep it to myself."

It didn't take long for the stein to become empty.  Gwae sulked as she looked on.

"...Aw, cheer up, Gwae," the paladin-turned-rogue finally said.  "I'll order something-- GYCCK!"


Gwae looked up.  Kathalia was clutching her stomach in obvious pain... but that wasn't the first thing that caught her attention.

"K-K-Kath!  Your sk-sk-skin's turning g-g-green!"

Indeed it was.  Patches of grass green were growing everywhere on Kathalia's face and body.  She ran a finger over a green area on the bare portion of her arm; it didn't feel like skin.  It felt a bit firmer than that.

RI-I-IP!  Something grew out of Kathalia's hand, tearing her glove apart.  It looked like some sort of blade.  She looked at her other hand just in time to see the same thing happening on it.

This must be some sort of hallucination.  I shouldn't have drank that Emerald Wheat all at once.  ...No, that's impossible; if it wasn't real, Gwae wouldn't have noticed.

A sharp pain in her back and a sudden feeling of pressure forced Kathalia to jump to her feet.  Gwae put a hand to her mouth as she stared at the insectoid wings that'd just ripped through the back of her companion's shirt in order to unfurl behind her properly.

What the @#*$& am I turning into?!

Kathalia found herself unsteady on her feet, and tried to grip the table in front of her, but her hands had by now changed fully into blade-things of some sort.  She managed to keep from falling over by stabbing the blades into the tabletop, just seconds before a long, reptilian tail grew out of her behind, ripping apart her pants but correcting her center of gravity.

Her senses were going ballistic.  Kathalia went to feel her head, quickly discovering her new antennae.  With them it felt like she was detecting an entirely new spectrum of sensations around her.

Finally, it was over.  Everyone in the tavern was staring, and had good reason to; Kathalia had transformed into some sort of green, humanoid mantis-lizard.  Gwae couldn't stop looking at her from top to bottom and back again.

"Kath... wh-what happened to you?"

Kathalia tried to speak, but some sort of inhuman noise escaped her throat instead.  Immediately she covered her mouth with her blades.

Gwae glanced down at the empty stein, believing it had something to do with all of this.  Then she noticed a note someone had placed on the table right beside it.

She picked it up and read it, her voice trembling.

Dear Kathalia,

I was the one who spiked your Emerald Wheat, using a bit of home-brewed transformation potion.  I am an assassin, but I work for nobody except myself.  Don't bother trying to find me; I cover my tracks well.

Since I like to give my prey a fighting chance, I'll tell you this: there is a way to reverse your transformation.  It's up to you and whatever allies you can gather to find it and cure yourself, and if you succeed, I shall consider myself defeated and bother you no more.

Be warned, however: if you are killed before you can be cured, you will be beyond saving... and I've already begun spreading rumors of a rare green monster whose corpse would be worth millions... need I say more?

If you wish to undertake this quest, your first step should be to find a certain knowledgeable wizard and scholar; she'll surely be able to point you in the right direction.  She has straight purple hair with lighter purple and pink streaks; you'll know her when you see her.  Ask around; someone has to know where she can be found.

Good luck.  You'll probably need it.

Signed, D

P.S. This note is written on special paper that will disintegrate within the hour.
:iconkathalia: is rather shaken right now due to a terrorist bombing occurring in the city she lives in, so I thought I'd leave her a gift to help get her mind off of things. This is actually an idea I've had for a while, but I've put it on hold until now for want of an appropriate occasion.

Previous stories in the D virus saga (recommended reading so you know what I'm talking about):
The D Virus
Discord the Assassin

...For those confused, Kath got turned into a D-beast.

Kathalia, etc. © :iconkathalia:
D virus. etc. © me
Add a Comment:
bogm0nst3r Featured By Owner May 8, 2013
Interesting story.
sonicinterface Featured By Owner May 8, 2013
Er, thank you.
bogm0nst3r Featured By Owner May 8, 2013
You're welcome.
lizardman22 Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Great story Mate. It's interesting to see the new ways you've been able to use the D-virus. Keep up the good work, Mate.
sonicinterface Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2013
It's a versatile concept, and I like that about it.
lizardman22 Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It is versatile. You've done a fantastic job with it :)
Lolocator Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013
wow cool story :) I like the cliff hanger the most. Also I think you deserve a good pat on the back for being so considerate of others and making gifts for them to help calm nerves.
sonicinterface Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013
I do things like this mainly because I think it's what a person with normal emotions would do.
Lolocator Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013
as would I :) believe it not my generation avoids all problems because they dont have the time for someone else's life no matter how depressive to ruin there day, sad but true which is why I work to be different.
sonicinterface Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013
I think this is a better response to that comment than I could ever compose myself.
Lolocator Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013
Hmm... you make a valid point there.
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