Here is another chapter.

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April 2 (Aftermath)

After the incident in Paktin, everything in Angler City got worse. More people were scared to be around areas with large people, more people openly attacked animals while more animals openly attacked people. Riots were frequent from both sides. Protests often ended with violence and looting was rampant.

Stephen considered leaving at the risk of losing his job and Evadne didn't seem to blame him for it. With everything happening in the city, it just seemed more plausible to run away before the city completely broke down. It's not like before the Paktin Massacare they didn't consider leaving. Many people knew that one day: Angler City would collapse and anyone still in the city will suffer greatly for it.

The both of them were in the park, a place that once had people resting on soft grass and breathing in fresh air, but here, in this hostile city, those days are long gone. Instead, polluted air, murky water, and angry protestors were prevalent in the area. Stephen and Evadne talked, and talked, not caring much for what was happening around them, at least for the moment. The vixen brought the human here to talk.

"They're scared that I'm still here, they think it's best for me to leave." She says with her mask on, the glum tone of her voice suggested that she wasn't going to see her friends or Stephen as much anymore, "And quite frankly, I agree with them."

"I don't blame them." The same muffled sound came forth when Stephen spoke in response, a similar amount of sadness in his voice can be identified, yet Evadne cannot see Stephen's face because of the obstruction that their masks present.

"Even though I'm happy that this city gave me opportunity and a place that I called home, and many wonderful friends, I've made up my mind."

One scream from a protestor nearby momentarily distracts the duo before Stephen faces her again.

"That's fine Eva, honestly I think you're making the right choice." The human responds.

"Will you be alright?" She asks.

"Of course."

Soon, the protest nearby turns violent with one animal clawing a human rival, and the entire crowd goes crazy. The duo continues to try and talk despite what is happening but both eventually decide to leave. After heading down the smoggy street and turning a left they make it to Stephen's apartment.

They climb the stairs to get to his door.

"I wish you could meet my parents."

"They won't approve, remember? They hate people."

"I wish they didn't, but after Paktin…"

"It's alright, can't be friends with everyone, right?" Stephen says but coughs awkwardly for that comment, "Anyways, when do you think you're leaving."

"For sure by the end of this week."

"Alright."

They stop by his door and Stephen curses loudly…the air-tight door has been broken.

He opens it the entire way and curses again when he sees the inside of his apartment.

His apartment is in ruin, with some things being destroyed or taken. His apartment is one of many who recently suffered the same fate.

He takes off his mask and throws it in the ground in anger, "I can't fucking believe this!" He inspects the damages but soon collapses on his couch and laughs to himself before Evadne takes off her mask and sits next to him: the both of them begin to feel the effects of the polluted air.

"Stephen…"

"They took almost everything…the canisters…they're gone too!" His self laughter soon returns to a voice plagued by pure rage.

With canister supplies dwindling due to the boycott and their prices rising to an almost unimaginable amount, it seemed hopeless for Stephen. Evadne tried to offer some of hers but she knew that she didn't have enough either, the both were affected by this.

"I'd have to ask Jared…" Stephen stands up, coughing loudly and sickly from the toxic air. He leaves and heads down the hallway. He knocks on his neighbor's door, waiting for an answer. Evadne follows but Stephen stops her, "He doesn't like new faces much."

"Sorry." She says before going back.

The door opens and a middle-aged man, balding yet in good shape for his age, appears and greets him.

"Jared, can I borrow some of your filtermask canisters?"

"You mean use; you can't borrow filtermask canisters." The man retorts, crossing his arms, showing resistance toward Stephen.

"I just had my apartment swept…I swear I'll pay you back." Stephen pleads, even bringing his hands together to form a pleading gesture toward the older man.

"Stephen, look around you." He orders Stephen. Stephen drops his hands and shakes his head, "I know-"

"Do it." Jared orders again but with more aggression in his voice.

Stephen submits to the man's wishes and looks around to see multiple rooms ransacked by looters.

"You think I can just give canisters around like a charity house? You know how much shit I went through to get these, and how it would be ridiculous for me to just hand them over to you. You're young, you can do it."

"Just one, one is enough for me, please!"

Jared does not listen and instead closes the door in front of Stephen's face. The young man looks down toward the ground and chuckles softly to himself in defeat.

Stephen returns to his apartment and his empty hands suggest to Evadne that his attempt was not successful.

Soon after, both cleaned the apartment, got rid of the bad air from outside, and finally sat down on the couch to rest.

"I can stay longer." Evadne says after turning to face Stephen. He faces her too and shakes his head, "No, you should get out of this town now, I promise I'll be fine."

"I don't believe that, I can bring you also, I don't care what my parents say."

Stephen rubs his hands together slowly as he stares down at the floor, "I came to this city and now I'm living the dream…"

"But this city has nothing for you now! Look around you, the city is falling apart. There won't be an Angler City soon." She retorts.

"…yea…you're right…but Eva…" Stephen looks up at her, their eyes lock in place for a brief moment before Stephen smiles softly, "I really don't want to think about this right now."

Stephen suddenly stands up and heads to his bedroom where he keeps his supply. Evadne stays sitting on the couch, wondering what the human was doing back there. When he returns he offers a small cube-like substance to her and she puts her hand out upon realizing what it is, "Come on Stephen, right now…this very instant?"

"Yea." He stops for a second and places two cubes down by the table. She laughs and then picks it up before he does the same with the other. She brandishes the drug and smiles, "This is the last time I guess, my parents aren't too fond towards special cubes."

"Well, for now I can safely say that I'm not missing out on any of it." Stephen smiles back before putting the cube in his mouth and the vixen next to him does the same soon afterwards.

After minutes of talking and listening to music, Stephen soon begins to feel weird: his shirt has gotten too hot to wear. He takes off his shirt once it gets too hot to wear. Evadne eyes him carefully as the music and her heartbeat strengthen, and then advances toward him, "You know…I don't find humans attractive." She suddenly says.

"Well, I don't find animals attractive." Stephen retorts before the both of them stare at each other. The human's eyes battle against the opposite across from him, struggling to resist this sensation he suddenly has towards her. This is wrong, he thinks to himself: a human with an animal, it's unnatural…right? But this might be the last time that they will see one another, and he has always sort of liked her…but was this instincts kicking in…a result of the drug in his brain? Special cubes are known to bring out the user's inner feelings, so was he really in control of his?

Their breathing quickens before both laugh momentarily, but then their eyes half close, and their mouths slowly approach the other before they connect and they silence their sight...they kiss. Stephen holds her before she welcomes this and both lie down on the couch.

As they make out passionately, Stephen feels an uncontrollable itching sensation spreading across his body. He can soon feel hairs spreading throughout his body and something growing behind him. It soon becomes clear that he is undergoing a transformation, or at least he thinks it's happening. Red fur spreads throughout his body before a darker color dominates his hands and feet and soon to be tail. His ears rise to his head as his face pushes outward before his newly formed tail starts to wag. He stops kissing Evadne momentarily to inspect his changes. She rolls her head in confusion, "What, what are you seeing?"

"I'm…I'm a fox…" He says softly, looking at himself, "If you could only see this, Eva…it's wonderful…"

"Really?"

"Yea…it feels so real…" He presses against her again before their muzzles touch, "I want this moment to last…last more than anything else…" He says before they begin kissing again. The next thing they know the rest of their clothes are off and they are in bed exploring the universe together: two animals, a fox and a vixen, making love, making the best of what they have left. Soon, the cube's effects would go away...