Jasmine walks into the pet store, Violet and Ryan close behind. Jasmine, formerly known as Blagblorg, came to Earth exactly one year prior. She woke up in the body of a human girl named Jordan. No one knows why or how it happened. They only know that now there is an alien living in Jordan’s body, and they are making the best of it. So, to celebrate Jasmine’s coming-to-Earth one-year anniversary, Violet and Ryan have taken Jasmine to a pet store.
The trio have been on many field trips in the past year. They went to the planetarium where Jasmine pointed out all the inaccuracies. They went to Ryan’s family’s farm where Jasmine chased chickens after they convinced her that the livestock won’t kill her. They went to the local bakery, where the baker’s wife allowed Jasmine to help bake a loaf of bread. The loaf turned into a brick when Jasmine tried to cook the bread faster by increasing the temperature on the oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Yes, they have had many adventures.
At this point, Jasmine has learned a lot about human society. She has more or less mastered the concept of genders – though she still accidentally refers to herself in the third person, and can get confused when girls have short hair or when boys have long hair. She has learned how to pass as normal in high school after a rough year adjusting to the intricacies of how teenagers interact. Sometimes, Violet and Ryan even forget that Jasmine is actually an alien named Blagblorg. And sometimes they even forget that they lost their best friend Jordan two years ago.
“Look at all of the animals!” Jasmine exclaims. “This is all so AMAZING!” She twirls around, arms extended. “Friends, thank you so much for bringing me here!” Violet laughs.
“Of course! We wanted you to have a special treat on this special day. The only place we haven’t taken you yet was the pet store! Come in here, this is the room where they keep the cats.” Violet leads her friends to the cat room.
“CATS?! I LOVE CATS!” Jasmine sprints into the room and crashes into the wall. The room was much smaller than she anticipated. Ryan and Violet bend over laughing. The cats watch Jasmine carefully, as if they are thinking ‘We need to watch this one. She is cray-zay and could be our ticket out of there.’ Unfortunately for the hopeful kitties, Jasmine was done with the cats when she realized her nose was bleeding.
“Jasmine! Are you okay?” Ryan asks.
“I am okay, friend Ryan. It is just my nose that is not okay.” Jasmine replies. “I hit the wall really very hard. I think, maybe, bandages would be a good idea.”
“Yea, I’ll go get help. Ryan, take her somewhere to sit down.” Violet leaves to find a worker that could get them some first aid supplies. Ryan leads Jasmine to a bench a few aisles away from the cat room.
“Sit here, Jas. I’m going to go find Violet, see if she has had any luck finding a worker. Okay?” Ryan walks away before Jasmine can answer.
When Ryan and Violet come back with a worker and a first aid kit, they find the bench where they left Jasmine empty.
Fortunately, they find her just a few moments later, standing over a tank full of turtles.
“The actual vacuum of space is probably better protection than a shell.”
Jasmine turns around. “Don’t you think so, friends and pet store worker?” She turns back to the tank. “I have named this one Mr. Frog. I want to take him home.”
“Miss, that is a turtle.” The pet store employee ventures.
“I apologize. I thought it was a frog.”
“Was that… sarcasm?” Ryan chuckles when Jasmine nods. “Good job.”
“Let’s get you cleaned up, and then we’ll talk about adopting a pet turtle, okay?” Violet opens the first aid bag and prepares to clean up Jasmine’s nose.
“Okay. Mr. Frog, we will go home very soon.” Jasmine walks over to Violet, but stands so that she can still see the turtle tank. “Soon, Mr. Frog. Soon.”