Two Viewpoints

I am more than one species.

My mindset is a mix of leopard and human. Physically, however, I am human and only human. Maintaining my leopard instincts in a human world is a tricky thing. A therianthrope/were/transspecies/animal person is human plus animal. Most people aren't.

Interaction with other humans is walking on a tightrope. I stumble. I feel self-conscious, unable to relax. The leopard inside my head is wary of most people. "What the hell's going on, I'm supposed to be alone, don't you dare come close." When leopard is all the way out, I'm without empathy. I don't care that I'm being insensitive or overly blunt. For leopard, there is no "overly blunt;" for human, there sure is. See the problem?

I'm a living paradox in some places. I use leopard fierceness to protect people, even though any leopard worth her salt protects only herself. I seek a friend or two, though most cats, as we all know, are solitary.

I am a leopard, but a bipedal one. I am a human, but a leopard one. I am leopard through a human filter. Even if I imagined myself as totally leopard, when I "unshifted" I'd still be both Homo sapiens and Panthera pardus.

What I do know is how to see the world from two viewpoints, every day and all the time. I take therianthropy, all of it, in stride. The meowing, the rolling in bins of polar fleece, the feeling of being caged, the need for alone time, the need for controlling territorial urges. It's all me.

—Quil
4.24.04

go back