AN: This is just a test chapter, see if it's worth continuing. I would appreciate reviews. It's not as gay as it sounds. Maybe. Possibly. Somewhat. Shits and giggles, right?
Warning: This is not a gender-bending or a body switching story and if the word boobs scare you, turn away now. I don't think you'd be able to handle the rest of it.
Disclaimer: Characters © James Patterson. Originals/plot is mine…which I don't have much of both.
Chapter One: Drama Queen
"Don't ever leave me again."
"I won't, I won't. Not ever."
- Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
"No. Absolutely not."
"Impossible. You do want to take Itex down, don't you?"
"Well… yes. Duh!" Max sputtered, frustrated beyond belief and tears. She uncrossed her arms, only to return them back to their former stiff position.
Father and daughter glared at each other, neither willing to back down from the argument. Max's face was slightly flushed, her jaw clenched defiantly and her speckled brown wings rustled restlessly. Jeb, on the other hand, was a perfect picture of calm and indifference. Ever since he and flock had been staying together at Valencia's house, Jeb's eerily warm and way-to-friendly demeanor ebbed away into something more relaxed and natural. He sat placidly on the living room's couch as Max paced relentlessly in front of him.
"Then you're going to have to leave them behind," Jeb explained patiently.
"I won't. We promised each other that we'd never separate," Max said with a stubborn lift of her chin.
"That's ridiculously naïve," Jeb sighed under his breath, ultimately unmoved and wishing that he could get back to work. He regarded his daughter with a slight frown and finally pulled out his triumph card. "In any case, you can still bring Nudge and Angel along."
"I'm sorry," Max said sarcastically, "It's all or nothing, dad."
Even when she said 'dad' with an air of scorn, Jeb could feel a small rush of pleasure. It was stupid and romantic, but it was there nonetheless. He couldn't help but soften his expression.
"You don't even know your assignment," he began, but was instantly cut off when Max impatiently made a slashing motion with her hand.
"It doesn't matter."
Jeb sighed, knowing that if he smiled, Max would only get angrier. He looked at her solemnly so that she can believe his frank honesty. "It's going to make things very difficult for you."
"Difficult. I like difficult," Max said with a twisted smile, "It's familiar, because I've probably never lived an easy day in my life."
"Really? Me neither."
Max glared at him murderously, too angry to even be cursing or kicking furniture about. She probably only held back because of Valencia, her mother. It was her house, not his. Jeb's lips twitched in a smile that was the same shade of Max's. "I'm glad we have something in common, Max."
Her face went livid and Jeb almost kicked himself for provoking her. She cursed then and started to storm out of the room, but Fang came in with a magazine in his hands.
"Sorry. I didn't realize you guys were having a father-daughter bonding session," he said ruefully with a subtle hint of worry in his dark eyes. Jeb breathed easy. His daughter tended to behave herself when Fang was around.
"Fang!" Max exclaimed, pulling off a remarkable feat of looking angry, annoyed, and relieved at the same time. She hung back only to snap at him, "Jeb wants to send me away." Ignoring Fang's raised brow, she stormed quickly out of the room.
"Is that true?" Fang asked coolly, turning to Jeb. The only thing that betrayed his feelings was the way his fist curled tightly around his magazine.
"Yes," Jeb said, secretly hoping that he'd be able to talk some sense into Fang, "Just the girls. The mission won't be very dangerous."
Fang's expression minutely shifted from mildly curious to perfectly blank. "Sure, but me, Iggy, and Gazzy will come along too."
"Don't you want to hear what the mission is first?" Jeb asked, his patience wavering dangerously.
"If that's what you want. That won't change my answer though," Fang replied with a careless shrug. He stood uncompromising and impassive. The boy was an excellent negotiator.
"You're going to regret it," Jeb groaned, a noise unfitting for a grown man, "I'm honestly trying to save you some face."
"If it means keeping the flock together, I don't care."
And that was that.
"Darlin', you look fabulous!"
Days later, Fang tried not to look horrified as Asher spun him around in the barber's chair to face the expansive mirror and his reflection. Indeed, his expression was the perfect picture of pure horror because the thing that stared back in the mirror was definitely not him.
"Ah, it's a shame that you make such a cute girl," Asher continued mercilessly, fiddling around with Fang's newly highlighted hair and after a thoughtful moment, added a charming sky blue barrette into the mix.
The stylist, Asher, was the most infuriatingly devious man he had ever met. It was probably nothing personal since Asher was only doing his job, but the man seemed to take extra pleasure in Fang's obvious discomfort. With bright blue hair, matching eyes, and a dazzling lilt in his voice, Asher surprised everyone by pronouncing that he was really an agent of the government. Jeb sure liked to keep strange friends.
"Thanks," Fang said through gritted teeth, causing Asher to chuckle.
"Well, now that we've got your hair down, let's see those legs of yours."
Fang did not like the sound of Asher's voice, but he complied by pulling up the sleeves of his pants to expose his shins. To his extreme dismay, Asher's expression changed from mute satisfaction to pale revulsion.
"Honey, do you see those disgusting little things on your legs?" Asher asked timidly, pointing as if he was referring to seeing roadkill. By now, Fang was used to the stylist's way of speaking and exaggerating things and being the intuitive person that he sort of was, Fang was appalled at what Asher was suggesting.
"They're just hairs. Completely normal. Girls have them, I know. I've seen Max's legs when she doesn't sha-" Fang tried to carefully explain, but Asher wouldn't have it.
"Yes, but like you, Max is a little runaway with very little care for personal appearance. Believe me when I say that I've been doing as much work on her as with you. Nope, your legs must be smooth and I daresay you could bathe them in lotion while you're at it."
"I don't think that's necessary," Fang replied curtly and tried not to draw his legs up as Asher started to open drawers filled with girly appliances that he uneasily could not recognize.
Asher turned around, one hand poised up in the air with a bottle of wax and a very serious expression on his angular face. For a moment, Fang could see that same hand holding a gun and he started to believe that maybe Asher was a government agent.
"You are about to infiltrate a boarding school by the name of St. Celestine. It is a prodigious school, made to breed the finest young ladies in the country and reserved for the wealthiest of families," Asher said conversationally, "A rich brat's prep school. And that means uniforms. Uniforms mean skirts. Skirts mean exposed legs. Legs like yours, while admittedly acceptable in shape, will lump you as being weird, ugly, and unpopular."
Asher paused, drilling his gaze into Fang.
"I did not spend five hours on you to be made fun of by silly teenage girls. You can refuse to talk like a girl, walk like a girl or act like girl, but I swear to God, I will make you look like one," he finished with a slow and lazy smile.
A minute ago, Fang could count the number of times he had feared for his own life on one hand. He was pretty sure that it was two hands now.
"Do you have any other objections, Fang?"
Needless to say, he didn't.