Author's Note: This is my second fanfic, and is also a Monster Girl Quest fanfic like The Tyrant and the Hero. However, this will be thematically quite different.


Alipheese sighed as she looked down at the twisted mass of flesh in her hands. It had once been a large feline, but a casual observer would no longer be able to recognise it as such. It had half a dozen eyes scattered across its head, legs with too many joints, a deformed and shortened tail, and bare skin with just a few tufts of fur.

The mass of flesh twitched for a few more seconds, struggling to breathe, then ceased moving.

Another failure, Alipheese thought. I thought this kind would be a better base, due to the intelligence they employ in hunting their prey... but it seems it's still not enough. What am I missing?

Setting the mass of flesh on the ground, Alipheese moved on, in search of her next experimental material.

This experiment was the latest in a series of experiments that Alipheese had been performing on for millions of years. Alipheese herself was an immortal being of pure dark energy, but she had taken a liking to the physical and ephemeral life of this planet. On occasion, she found an organism so interesting that she assimilated it into her own form. She had the large curving horns of a grazing ruminant, the antennae of a clawed decapod, the eyes of a feathered raptor, the tendrils and flowers of a creeping plant, the tail of an enormous purple serpent, and countless others, all combined into a shape that could never be formed by natural selection.

While she wandered around, Alipheese spotted something in the distance with her keen eyes, something she'd never seen before. Not wanting to alert it - if it was a new kind of animal - she used the power of darkness to become invisible and inaudible, then approached.

A collection of artificial structures, formed from logs and branches arranged together, and inhabited by... hairless apes? They gave off a similar scent to the other apes Alipheese had seen, but they were also clearly different. These hairless apes were completely bipedal and made use of numerous tools. Alipheese had seen normal apes use tools before, but these hairless ones took it to an entirely different level, cutting, grinding, shaving, refining their tools into more useful forms. Among these tools were pieces of animal hide and plant fibres, which the apes used to cover their bodies. Furthermore, the apes communicated with each other by making complex sounds, so complex that they were only matched by those of songbirds and cetaceans.

Alipheese continued watching the strange hairless apes for several days. Everything they did impressed her.

Even though they are slow and weak, compared to most animals of their size, they more than compensate for that with their tools and cooperation, Alipheese thought. And while their cooperation is less than that of eusocial insects, their larger size and longer lifespan gives them the advantage.

These are what I was looking for.

Having made up her mind, Alipheese entered the village and began harvesting the hairless apes. Whenever she touched one, it was quickly sucked into her flesh. The apes made loud noises and scattered, no doubt confused by the unseen entity consuming their kin, but they could not escape her. Soon, she had harvested all of the apes save one - an adult female, crouched in one of the structures, presumably attempting to hide.

The females of this species produced milk to feed their young, like other mammals, but unlike other mammals their mammary glands remained engorged even outside of this activity. This particular female demonstrated this to a greater extent than her kin. Alipheese found this interesting... interesting enough for her to take this form for her own.

Alipheese consumed the screaming female and incorporated her body structure into her own. While her body remained serpentine from the waist down, from the waist up it transformed, gaining smooth hairless skin, a chest possessing the engorged mammary glands, a single pair of arms with flexibility and dexterity at the expense of strength, a head with weak jaws but a larger brain, a covering of long hairs that extended from the top of the head. However, the skin of this new upper body was purple while its hair was white, both relics from organisms she'd previously consumed.

After some more tweaking, Alipheese was satisfied with her appearance. She re-added the horns and the flowers to her head, feeling that they complemented the ape features well. The fingers on her hands were longer than the baseline, as this was more convenient for her work.

Now possessing the genetic material of the intelligent apes, Alipheese resumed her experiments.

-ooo-

"More failures?" Alipheese muttered to herself. "It shouldn't be possible. What am I missing?"

It had been five years since Alipheese had first harvested the apes. In that time she had made thousands of creations, varying in external appearance, all with a brain that perfectly resembled its basis, yet none of them were successful. Her creations were no more intelligent than normal apes, being unable to use any tools beyond sticks and rocks, or communicate in anything more than simple grunts and gestures. All she had learned was the apes' language - they seemed to refer to their own kind as "humans".

Suddenly, Alipheese sensed someone approaching - another of the humans. She decided to try something new and did not attempt to hide herself.

This particular human was an adult male, and relatively young. Upon seeing Alipheese, he demonstrated a mix of emotions: fear and confusion, which were understandable, but also something else... sexual arousal.

It considers this body attractive? Alipheese wondered. It's plausible, considering that I based it on the female of the same species. Hmm... if I go along with this...

-ooo-

Alipheese uncoiled her body, letting the dead body of the male human fall to the ground.

As I suspected, there is something special in these humans, Alipheese thought. Whatever it is, I can't manipulate it directly like I can flesh or dark energy. However, it seems to be the key to their intelligence. And now that I know about it...

Within her body, Alipheese attempted to use the human's sperm to fertilise her own eggs. It took thousands of attempts, but eventually she succeeded... partially.

I've formed the zygote... but judging from its genome, it will not develop properly into a complete, intelligent organism on its own. It seems to be due to my own contribution of genes... an artificial collection of multiple organisms can hardly produce viable offspring. But it does resemble a cancerous cell... hmm...

After making some modifications to the zygote, Alipheese acquired another adult male human, who had been sleeping in his hut, and injected the zygote into him. If all went as expected, the zygote would spread throughout his tissue, following the existing structure of his body, and transform the human into her long-sought goal: an intelligent being of darkness.

The attempt failed. The male human flailed about and screamed as his body was consumed by rampant tumours.

Alipheese sighed. It seemed like her goal was impossible.

However, she remembered the female human whom she'd consumed to create her current appearance. She decided to try one more time.

After making another zygote, Alipheese acquired an adult female human, one who somewhat resembled the previous one, especially around the chest. She injected the zygote and waited.

The female human also flailed about and screamed, but she did not die. Slowly, surely, her body transformed.

A pair of membranous wings, like those of a bat, grew from the human's back, tearing apart the dress she was wearing. Then a second, then a third, resulting in three pairs of wings. Two horns grew from her head, though these were straight in contrast to Alipheese's. A tail, covered in smooth skin instead of fur or scales, grew from her lower back. Both her skin and hair became white in colour.

So in addition to the human traits, she expresses traits of other organisms, which must come from my contribution, Alipheese analysed dispassionately.

The flailing and screaming stopped. The former human raised her body unsteadily. She examined her naked body, reacting in confusion and horror at the new features, then noticed Alipheese's presence. She backed away until she hit a nearby tree.

"Who - Who are you!?" the former human cried out. "What have you done to me!"

Alipheese slithered forward, already knowing what to say in response. Her investigations of humans told her of the importance of names... and she had come up with the ideal names in this situation.

"You may call me Alipheese," Alipheese said. "And you are the first of my new lineage. You are my first monster."


AN: As MGQ fans will have figured out, this takes place in the distant past, not long after the creation of humans by Ilias. This time period has been touched on in previous fics, but I'm planning to depict this in more detail.