Uploaded 24/05/2016 15:20
After months of bitter cold and towering snow drifts, winter reluctantly left its throne, ushering in the benevolent rule of spring. The vast expanses of white have eroded, replaced with swaying fields of green, and the citizens of Woodland who vanished in the months before have finally emerged from their homes, eager to greet the fresh new year. It is the month of emergence, when the birds sing, the flowers bloom, and a young boy’s mind turns to… his action figures.
“There you are!” Byron picked a grey wolf in green combat fatigues up from the carpet and aimed its weapon at a shadowy figure a couple of feet away. “Give up now or we’ll have to take you in by force!” The valiant soldier bore the scars of battle, along with a few bite marks from a curious toddler. “NEVER! Your puny planet will be ours!” Byron reached over to grab the other toy, an assassin shrouded in black. The only part of the figure left uncovered was a pair of crimson eyes and a wisp of blond hair spilling out from behind its mask. The little bear grabbed a toy in each hand, and clapped them together in mock combat. After the third impact, the wolf’s head popped off and rolled on the floor. Byron briefly stared at the soldier’s empty shoulders, slack-jawed in disbelief, before setting the rest of the figure nearby. “Auuugh,” he moaned as he laid the fallen hero down. He set the other toy’s eyes on the corpse and shook it, pantomiming a sinister laugh. “Ha, ha! Ha ha HAAA! Now Woodland belongs to the humans!” Byron desperately looked around before spotting another action figure laying behind him. “Not so fast! You can’t stop… Samurai Serval!” The bear produced a spotted cat brandishing a plastic blade. “Take that, and that!” Byron quickly flicked a switch on the cat’s back, triggering his Super Samurai Swordplay. The jerking action of the blade didn’t look like much to a grown up, but to a child, it was every bit as incredible as the lofty title suggested.
He set the invader behind Samurai Serval and tapped the cat’s shoulder with an outstretched arm. “Guess who?” Byron rammed the dark figure into the spotted swordsman, knocking him to the floor. “You stupid furballs could never beat us!” Byron’s mother looked up from her tablet, a look of bewilderment splashed on her face. “Where was he learning this stuff?,” Ada muttered as she sat the device down on a table and walked into the living room where her son was playing. Maybe it was time for a break from all that action… along with the colorful language.
“Not so fast,” Byron growled. He reached into a tin and pulled out a muscular brown bear, easily twice the size of the other figures. “Woodland will always be free as long as there’s… uh… me!” The cub gritted his teeth at the line, which was terrible even by the generous standards of a two year old. He then grabbed the massive bear with both hands and used him to stomp the invader into the carpet. Byron enthusiastically kept up the carnage, until it was interrupted by a gentle hand on his shoulder.
“All right, I think he’s got the point.” Ada took the ursine avenger from Byron’s hands and set him back into the metal bin. “’Furball’ isn’t a nice thing to say, little guy,” she scolded. “Where did you learn that word, anyway?” Byron just shrugged his shoulders. “I heard it on the news, I guess. That’s what they call us, right?” Ada took a breath through her teeth… he wasn’t wrong, but it wasn’t something she wanted to hear in her house, let alone from her youngest child. “Guess we’ll be moving your nap to six ‘o clock from now on.”
Ada set her hands around Byron’s waist and picked him up from the floor. She looked down at the diaper sagging between his legs and twitched her nose in disgust. “I guess that battle was a little too exciting for you, huh?” Byron tilted his head, a little confused. “Huh?” She gently poked a claw into his soaked pants and smirked. “Oh, that.”
Ada set the cub back down on the floor with a light squish. “Stay right there, I’ll get you changed.” She vanished upstairs, and returned just as quickly with a bulging backpack, something Byron recognized from long trips with his sister. Instinctively, the chubby brown cub lay down on his back, setting a hand next to his head and a thumb inside his mouth.
Ada spread her son's legs apart and tore the tapes from his soggy shorts, filling the room with a crackling rip. She took Byron's ankles in one hand and pulled the used diaper from his bottom with the other, then set to work cleaning his behind with a handful of moist wipes. Next came a squirt of ointment to prevent rashes, and a shake of powder to keep the toddler cool and dry. It was all perfectly ordinary until Ada reached into the backpack for a fresh pair of pants. Byron tried to sit up to see what was inside, but Ada set a hand on his chest and gently pushed him back down on the carpet. "Just lay there and close your eyes... we're just about finished." He felt his tail threaded through the back of the diaper, and the tapes snugly fastened in place. Byron rolled onto his stomach and awkwardly pushed himself off the ground with both hands. As he rose to his feet, he noticed both Ada and his sister Elle standing next to him, holding their hands over their muzzles.
"So, does that feel better?" Ada grinned broadly as Elle stifled a giggle.
"I'm okay, I guess. What are you guys so happy about, anyway?" He shifted from one foot to the other, and noticed the padding in his pants had moved a little, from the front to the middle. "These feel weird... you got Dampers, right?" He glanced down, but couldn't see much beyond his round tummy.
Ada and Elle burst out in raucous laughter.
"What's so FUNNY?!" Byron gave his mother and sister a sour look, and set a hand on his behind.
The cub's jaw hung wide open for a second as he desperately searched for the words to adequately describe his horror. He couldn't find any that fit, so he just blurted out the obvious.
"These are GIRL'S diapers!!!"
Ada chuckled as she looked down at her son, now adorned with ribbons and red hearts. "Sorry, we ran out of yours. Since Elle is almost toilet trained now, I thought she wouldn't mind if I used her old ones."
Byron took a deep breath and sucked in his gut, looking past it to discover a nightmare in pink. "These aren't just girl's diapers! They're the girliest girl diapers EVER!!!"
Elle shrugged indifferently. "Yeah, Mom got me those during my princess phase. I'm way past that, though... the REAL power's in politics."
Ada added, "For what it's worth, I think you make an ADORABLE little girl." Somehow it didn't seem like much of a compliment.
Byron offered no response, instead scrambling to tear off the diaper that held him captive. Ada gently took his hand as he scratched at the waistband and shook a finger in his face. "Now, now... you don't want to have to wear these over them, do you?" She held up a pair of plastic pants that were somehow even more embarrassing than his current attire.
The cub's eyes bulged in stunned disbelief. "Y-you're mean!" "You're mean, too!," he screamed at his sister, as tears stung his eyes. Feeling helplessness and fury in equal measure, Byron dropped to the floor and flailed his limbs, pounding the carpet with two tiny, rage-filled fists.
"Uh..." Ada looked down awkwardly, gritting her teeth. "I think our Springtime Surprise joke went a little too far."
"I dunno, I could watch a few more hours of this!" Elle looked up at her mother with the kind of grin reserved for the victor in a sibling rivalry.
"Just get the Dampers from the closet."