It's funny looking back I'm an only child and often when I was young I wished I had a little sister or brother to play with. Something in retrospect that brings to mind the old saying: 'be careful what you wish for.'
My name was Tom Rivers, a 16 year old boy. I lived with my parents in the middle class suburb town of Wilynsford in Oxfordshire, England. We have had a reasonably nice life, not rich, not poor, and overall, we had pretty much all we wanted. I was happy, safe, and loved. What more could a kid want? My mother was a designer working for a local ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) design house. They did custom designs for various places, and she did some ASIC design and any software component required. My Dad worked as an artist in painting and photography. He did reasonably well, supplementing what he could make on his paintings and photographs with commissions for things like family photos or portraits. They were both very happy with their lives, and they had a fair degree of freedom in their work. Mum could telecommute and Dad had a studio at the end of our small garden, so they were around quite a bit, often working from home. Mum and Dad had always wanted to have more children but had been unable, I didn't know why it was something they didn't talk about. They managed not to spoil me too much letting me grow up relatively normal.
Neither of my parents had gone through MORFS, their generation was the first to be of the right age to go through it. So they had both had friends who changed. Back then it was a long painful process. There was also the fear it caused, initially they didn't know what was happening, what was causing kids and animals to change. I can't imagine what that would be like for the first sufferers and their families. The initial shock and terror of this thing was that it reaches inside you, changes you seemingly at random. Some coming through it with radically different hybrid bodies or powers, that until then had only existed in story books and the darkest of nightmares. It certainly puts a lot of my problems in perspective. Nowadays, it was getting to be the norm that a percentage of kids would undergo MORFS, it had been happening for nearly 3 decades; I guess I had always known it was a possibility for me.