Got a pretty great response to the first one, so it’s a good thing I kept on writing more. Time for a look at how Jacob saw that first few moments of the switch.
Jacob could swear he was on the set of a bizarre sci-fi movie. Tall, leafy ferns stood over his head. Thick leaves the size of throw blankets layered the damp ground. Blades of grass wider than several fingers stood in clumps all around him. Huge ants meandered past in a determined march as they sought out something to bring back to their den.
He stumbled away from them. Those ants were too big to be real. He blinked, and then looked past the nearest tall grass and plants. Things drifted into focus and he almost wished they hadn’t.
Beyond the giant leaves, giant grass, giant plants, there were giant trees. These had to put the California Redwoods to shame. Jacob stared straight up at the canopy, now much farther away than he remembered. Leaves swayed serenely up there with no idea how alarming they looked.
One of the shorter shapes Jacob had taken to be a tree swayed. He focused on it and realized with a dizzy, sinking feeling that it was not a tree.
“Holy shit, Bowman.”
Jacob’s friend, who normally stood small enough to perch right on the palm of his hand, towered overhead. His wings, normally with a span not even a foot wide, could block out Jacob’s view of the sky if they were to open wide. Jacob couldn’t usually pick out all the details on Bowman’s tiny face, but now he might as well be a billboard. Those vibrant green eyes were the size of Jacob’s head, easily.
Somehow, some way, Jacob was sprite sized and Bowman was human sized.
He looked dizzy. As Jacob stood there and watched, too shocked to move, Bowman blinked with purpose, and then scowled at his surroundings. It was a familiar expression. Jacob half expected Bowman to break into a lecture for the nearest tree branch.
Then, Jacob flinched when Bowman whirled around and his wings flared open. The little guy wasn’t so little anymore, and his speed far outstripped Jacob’s own.
“I’m blasted human-sized?!”
The voice startled Jacob even more than Bowman’s quick movements. Even as Bowman stared at his surroundings in accusatory wonder, Jacob stepped back. Bowman’s voice was familiar, even at that scale, but nothing could have prepared Jacob to hear it that way. The sound shook the air.
Hoooly shit, Bowman.
Jacob watched, his neck craned back, as Bowman got over his dizzy spell. Shooting up around six feet in height couldn’t be any easier than shooting down by that much. Jacob had to keep his feet planted or risk falling on his ass.
Bowman was not of the same mind, apparently. The foliage rustled and Jacob’s gaze dropped like a stone to the green, leafy boots. Bowman was unsteady on his feet.
If Jacob wasn’t right in his path, he’d find it funny.
He whirled around to take stock of his surroundings. Tall grass and ferns all around, and that line of ants diligently marching on. Jacob needed to get out of Bowman’s direct path, but he couldn’t get too far away. If the sprite took off on him, he’d be all alone out in the woods.
He set off in a direction just as the foliage rustled again. The ground shook and Jacob faltered, staring down. Earthquakes. Just a step was an earthquake.
His moment of distraction nearly cost him his life. Like a gigantic, green rockslide, Bowman’s boot landed mere feet–No, inches!–in front. Jacob threw himself backwards in alarm, stumbling a few steps before toppling backwards.
“Hey, Bowman,” he tried to yell, but his voice rasped out instead, quiet from his shock and fear. The boot pressed into the ground and Jacob’s eyes widened. Couldn’t let Bowman walk off.
“Okay, okay,” he whispered to himself, and then his voice grew into a panicked shout, “Fuckdammit!”
Everything paused. Jacob looked up and flinched. Those vibrant green eyes were fixed right on him, wide with surprise that matched his own. Framed by Bowman’s brown skin and unruly green hair, they drew Jacob’s focus with ease.
Bowman gasped, a huge gale drawn into his lungs all at once, and then he rushed down towards Jacob. Jacob flinched back and found himself in the shadow of his best friend, when normally that friend could fit in his hoodie pocket.
The tables had definitely turned. And not in his favor.
“Jacob?!” Bowman asked, his voice loud and commanding. A lot more than Jacob remembered it.
“Yeah, uh. Yeah, dude, it’s me. How’s–Jesus, Bowman!”
Jacob’s answer went from neutral to nervous to alarmed in a matter of seconds. A hand shot down from the sky like a bird of prey, and long, slender fingers pinched at the back of Jacob’s hoodie. The loose fabric pulled taut under his arms and he left the ground behind faster than any person should.
Grass and leaves dwindled away under his kicking boots until he came to a stop right in front of a pair of shocked, bright green eyes. Jacob tensed and drew his legs up as if that might protect him from a fall. He wrapped his arms around his middle to keep from slipping right out of his jacket, and stared right back at Bowman.