Lucille talked with
both Hilla and Randie
about the possibility of
becoming a werewolf.
"I like the idea of trading in
my fibromyalgia for shapeshifting,"
said Lucille, "but I'm just not
a dog person, so I doubt I'd
make a good wolf person."
"I'm still trying to get used to
people wanting to get infected,"
Randie said, shaking her head.
"It sounds like an improvement
to me," said Lucille, "except
for the actual wolf part."
"Is it always a wolf?" Hilla wondered.
"Does being bitten by a werewolf
mean you're automatically going
to be a werewolf, or could it manifest
as a different lycanthropic form for some?"
"If a werewolf bites you, then you
turn into a werewolf," Randie said.
"What about other options?"
Lucille said. "Are there any
other kinds of shapeshifters
besides the wolves?"
"I've heard ... rumors,"
Randie said slowly. "There are
supposed to be goat ones,
down in Puerto Rico."
"Are there any cats?"
Lucille asked, leaning forward.
"Hearsay," Randie replied.
"Then I'll be looking ... elsewere,"
Lucille said with a firm nod.
"We can help search," Hilla said.
"Not just us werewolves, but
the chronic pain group."
"Thank you," Lucille said
with a lazy-eyed smile.
* * *
Fibromyalgia is one of the leading causes of chronic pain.
Lucille's symptoms are italicized:
• Chronic muscle pain, muscle spasms, or tightness
• Moderate or severe fatigue and decreased energy
• Insomnia or waking up feeling just as tired as when you went to sleep
• Stiffness upon waking or after staying in one position for too long
• Difficulty remembering, concentrating, and performing simple mental tasks ("fibro fog")
• Abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, and constipation alternating with diarrhea (irritable bowel syndrome)
• Tension or migraine headaches
• Jaw and facial tenderness
• Sensitivity to one or more of the following: odors, noise, bright lights, medications, certain foods, and cold
• Feeling anxious or depressed
• Numbness or tingling in the face, arms, hands, legs, or feet
• Increase in urinary urgency or frequency (irritable bladder)
• Reduced tolerance for exercise and muscle pain after exercise
• A feeling of swelling (without actual swelling) in the hands and feet
Lycanthropy can entail different types of shapeshifting. Although werewolves are the most famous in Western culture, there are other species of shifter, including various werecats.
Chupacabras are legendary creatures, occasionally considered weregoats which is what they are in this setting.
Cats "smile" by squinting or slowly blinking their eyes. Some humans with a strong affinity for cats will combine this with the human lip-smile.