Everybody Wants To Be A Cat

"I have fur," Uhura said wonderingly. She ran her hands - really paws - over the soft, golden, silky stuff, so much softer and finer than what grew on her own head. The colors of everything were duller, less distinct, but as she watched her paws stroke her fur, it was almost as if they left vivid contrails, as if motion made the color of an object brighter, and the object itself jump into focus.

"And I don't," her own voice said, sounding distressed. It took Uhura a moment to read the dismayed expression on the others face, despite the fact that it was her own face.

"It's not that bad, M'Ress, she said. "It's great for swimming!" Uhura loved to swim, but now that she was in M'Ress's body she could understand clearly why M'Ress wouldnt go near the Enterprises swimming pool. Or why her pet cats at home had hated baths. The thought of getting this pelt soaked with cold water was deeply unpleasant.

"It feels chilly," M'Ress complained. How can you stand such a scant covering on your legs? I always thought Starfleet over-costumed us with our uniforms, but now I see that the humanoid women's uniforms are hardly adequate."

Uhura laughed. "I am not surprised that the first thing a woman who's not used to having human skin would complain about is Starfleet female uniforms."

"And the colors. They're too bright. They're hurting my head."

"You don't think they're pretty?"

"I'm jumping at everything. The colors so bright make me think that everything is moving. It's so busy looking. And I can barely hear!"

Uhura tried to make a face, but the muscles of the Caitain face felt stiff, and she wasnt sure she was making the expression she wanted. Her tail twitched. Now that felt weird. "Don't you like anything about being in a human body?" she asked, trying to express a teasing, mock disappointment. But between the twitching of her tail and the stiffness of her face, she was afraid that it was coming out as if it were real disappointment. And maybe she was a little disappointed. She was enjoying the experience of being a felinoid, although she wouldn't want to be stuck this way; why was it that M'Ress, an explorer in Starfleet as much as she was, couldn't find anything to enjoy about being humanoid?

M'Ress flexed Uhura's fingers, staring at them intently. "Well, these seem like they might be really useful."

Uhura inspected M'Ress's paw. She had an opposable thumb, of course, but only four fingers and they were much shorter and less flexible than human fingers. She laughed, which sounded odd in a Caitian voice. "Oh, M'Ress, you have no idea."