It wasn't long after that last entry that Gretchen showed up to find two strange guys in her room, and I guess we're lucky she didn't call the cops. I tried to explain about the curse, reminding her of the blog and its premise, leading up to "I'm Annette and this is Benny, the guy from last night."
She didn't believe it, of course, what with it being ridiculous. I wonder how many people changed by this place's curse have been told that they can do what they want with their fellow role-players, but she didn't sign sign up for it so just take your luggage and don't be weird. So we did.
Benny stared a little as we left, and I chuckled. "Bet you wish that you'd wound up with her instead of me last night."
"Not going there, Annie. Besides, you're not allowed to pull that sort of girl word-trap any more anyway."
I stroked my mustache. "I'm not?" I smiled nervously, hoping we didn't look weird because of it. "Ah, well. Although I guess it's 'Ravi' now. And it's never been 'Annie' anyway, or even just 'Ann' very often."
"Either I or my mother liked how it sounded when I was little, and there was one girl in my class who really insisted on 'Anne', so there you are. Or there you were." I sighed. "'Ravi'. It's going to take me forever to learn to respond to that. How do you think you'll do with 'Jordan'?"
"If he's just sliding back into his life as a girl, I don't think many people are calling him by name too often."
"Ouch! That's sad, but I guess easy enough for you. I've got a fiancee! The letter doesn't make them sound like the lovey-dovey, PDAs-all-the-time couple, but..." I let it tail off. What could one say.
He offered to by me a burger with what was left of his pants money, and I almost said yes before remembering that the letter said Ravi's family didn't eat beef. Even though nobody would know or find it strange here in Maine,what if years of not eating burgers meant it turned his stomach. Anyway, it was good practice, although that's easy to say after a week.
Most folks who changed left the Inn pretty quickly - lives to "return to" and all that - but Benny and I hung around. I called Ravi's job, and while they were as mad about him not showing up as you might expect, I think that the part of the curse that keeps people from believing you has a compensating effect where they buy into some bad clam chowder making you too sick to call for two weeks much more easily than they should. He wouldn't be back on the schedule until Tuesday, though, so we sort of broke our new bodies in in a place that was familiar to him and kept and eye on the Inn. Gretchen was really freaked out to have the place to herself for the last couple of days, although I chatted with her a couple times on Facebook to say I was having fun and would be back home in a couple of weeks, which should the case providing he/she doesn't pull a Jordan. Benny checked in with some of his friends, but they kind of ignored him, even more than Gretch did with me.
Last night, we sat down on the beach with some ice cream after seeing what looked like a nice married couple checking into our room, and took stock. He wondered if they'd keep their sexes or pull some sort of switcheroo, and I shrugged. So far, I didn't think the sex change was that big a deal physically, although the way some of the early folks on this blog carried on about having a vagina, you'd think it was the end of the world rather than something half the world did more or less without complaining. We took bets about whether he'd find himself in a crappy Boston apartment when he switched back, or if they'd try to keep it together long-distance.
He shrugged. "I could do that. More going on there than in the winter here, but I never felt like picking up and moving after high school." He shifted a bit. "Tell me something. I couldn't think of anything to tell my friends that would convince them I was who I said I was, but you looked like you had something to tell Gretchen. Why didn't you?"
"I almost did. It was on the tip of my tongue, but I was kind of terrified that it would just convince her that I would tell someone her secrets for the purpose of a game."
He pulled me in for a little side-hug and messed with my hair at that. I don't know whether it was a buddy thing or him liking me but not while we look like this. Then it was back to our second hotel room of the trip to rest up. Got a long trip to New York today!