Scales of Fayt:
I groaned, another weekend had come and gone, and tomorrow was back to work. They never seemed long enough, the weekends. I scratched absently at a dry, scaly patch on the back of my neck. I liked my job well enough I supposed, it paid well and the guys that I worked with were as big of smart-asses as I was, it made the days a lot easier. I yawned, it was getting late, and as much as I hated it, it was getting to the point that if I didn't head off to bed I would not function the following day to any great degree.
I yawned again and scratched at my neck again, the spot was starting to piss me off, it had been bothering me for a few days, and no matter what I did it seemed to steadily disregard whatever I did to get it to not itch. I walked into my bathroom hoping that there was still a little lotion left in the bottle I had in there, I had been using a prodigious amount lately trying to get that patch to stop itching, and had burned through most of the moisturizer in the house. I grabbed the bottle shaking it, finding that there was still a little left in the bottom. Sighing I dumped it out and slathered it on the offending spot, relishing the fact that it helped, even a little. I walked back into my room, tossing back my covers, and climbed into bed. A quick glance at the clock told me that I was definitely going to be tired the next day, but I'd done worse, I turned my light out, rolled over and went to sleep.
The next morning I was woken out of my sleep by my alarm blaring in my ear. I groaned and flipped it off, cursing the confounded thing. I sat up rubbing the sleep out of my eyes, and turned on my TV. I slowly got dressed as I watched the weather report for the day, it was going to be cold again, it didn't matter much to me I was just hoping for a good amount of snow this year, last year had been a bit disappointing for snowboarding. I got dressed and grabbed a work shirt, and headed downstairs to fix breakfast before heading out. I ate quickly and headed out.
Work went smoothly, as most Mondays do, but I was just happy to be home for the day. I headed upstairs, I was covered in dust, and it was driving my skin crazy, I itched all over. I closed my room door behind me and kicked on my computer, I'd let it boot while I was in the shower. I stripped off my clothes, and tossed them in the hamper, and grabbed my towel. I headed straight for the shower, turning on the water and stepped in. I scrubbed down quickly, and washed off the filth of the day. After my shower I was drying off when I noticed that my patch was acting up again. I groaned at the thought of slathering on massive amounts of lotion again. I looked in the mirror over the sink and twisted to see the offending spot, expecting nothing more than a flaky patch that would need more lotion, and possibly a look at by a specialist, what I saw was a section of my skin that had turned to a dark green. It was small and not really noticeable, yet, I worried that it would spread, and raise some odd questions. The strangest part of it though was the texture, it wasn't fleshy, like skin normally is, it was just like it felt, it was like scales. I walked out of the bathroom, worried as to what had caused the abnormality in my skin. I threw on a shirt and pants sitting down in front of my computer.
Let's see what the internet has to say about odd scaly growths. I said, with a grimace.
I fired up the internet, and pulled a basic search up and a medical one too, just in case. I typed in a quick set of search criteria and started looking for oddities that would tell me what was going on. I spent the next few hours hunkered down in front of my screen researching all sorts of interesting, but completely unrelated medical information.
I rubbed my eyes, I wasn't making any progress, there was no information as to what was going on, it seemed that I was a one-of-a-kind case, or it was rare enough that no-one bothered loading anything pertinent to the web. I growled, scratching at the spot again, it was driving me nuts, and there wasn't anything that I could do, short of heading to the hospital. I shuddered at the thought, I hated hospitals, and really didn't like the thought of having strange doctors poking and prodding me as an experiment. I resigned myself to knowing nothing about what was going on, and left it at that, for the night anyways.
I ended up spending the rest of my night doing my online rounds, and chatting with friends, and my scaly patch dropped out of my concern, at least for a while. I ended up loosing track of the time, as was pretty normal, and only realized how late it was when I looked in the bottom corner of my screen. It was already midnight. I groaned, mentally slapping myself for letting myself loose track of time again. I stood up stretching out my stiffening muscles, and headed downstairs. I grabbed some snack crackers and heated a mug of water up to make some tea. I munched on the crackers while I waited for my water to heat, I took the mug when it was warmed up and dropped a tea bag in and headed back upstairs. I finished off my crackers and sat down at the head of my bed, slowly sipping my tea. I turned on the TV to see if there was anything going on in the next few days, then finished my tea and climbed under the covers and fell asleep.
I woke up the next morning to a combination of my neck, which hadn't bothered me all night, and my alarm. I scratched without really thinking about it, until I realized that the section of odd flesh was larger than I remembered. I jumped out of bed and walked into my bathroom quickly. I looked in the mirror and was shocked to see that the section on my neck was spreading quickly down the right side of my back, giving a large section of new scales all the way, all of them the same deep green that the initial patch had been. I cautiously touched the new section, there was no pain, no discomfort, nothing, it just felt, kind of natural, in a completely off balancing way. I sighed and returned to my room, grabbing a shirt out of my closet and threw it on with a pair of pants. I walked back into the bathroom and checked to see if my shirt would cover the patch, fortunately it did, but I knew if I went to work with a patch of scales on my back it would raise all sorts of questions that I neither wanted or could answer. I opted to take the easy way out and called in sick, saying I had some odd rash that wouldn't go away, not the best reason, but it was close enough to reality for me.
I went back upstairs and fired up my computer again, trying to find another way to identify what was going on with me. The idea hit me like a ton of bricks, I did a search for local herpetologists, and was able to find one fairly close. I printed off his information and headed downstairs. I took a small ziploc bag out of one of the cupboards, and collected a few scales from my back. I placed them in the bag and placed the bag in my pocket. Sighing I walked out to my car with the directions that I had printed off in one hand, and a bag of scales in my pocket, I had a feeling that it was going to be an interesting day.
I drove for about an hour to get to the herpetologist's workplace, it was a small shop designed for the reptile enthusiast, everything that you could ever need to take care of any manner of exotic pet was there. I walked through the front door, a bit nervous about how this encounter would play out.
Can I help you? Asked a young woman behind the counter.
Uh, yeah, I was hoping to get some scales identified, I found some around my house and was wondering what they're from.
Alright, I'll go get Greg, he's the one that you want to talk to, I just help him run this place, he's the lizard nut.
I watched her walk off into the back area of the store, and heard a muffled conversation between her, and who I assumed was Greg. She walked back out, and took her spot behind the counter again. He'll be out in a second, he's in the middle of something.
Thanks... I stalled, there was no indication of her name anywhere.
Name's Lucy, and you are?
Well Justin, I don't know how long he'll be, so feel free to check out the store, and- She stopped abruptly.
I had been looking at some of the smaller creatures in the terrarium next to where I was standing, I looked back over when she stopped, and saw a man, wearing a white lab coat, more befitting a research facility than a pet shop standing there.
So, you've come to show me something then have you? He looked mildly interested in what I had, but his overall air was that of boredom, like he needed to see something new. I had to appreciate the irony of what I brought.
Yeah, I've got some odd looking scales that I found, I was hoping to get an ID on them, I don't particularly want to poke around in the dark places of my home trying to find out what's leaving them, you know?
Yes, I know all about sticking my hand where it doesn't belong, not that it ever stops me, I still do it. He smiled. I started to ease up, it was obvious that the guy loved what he did, and did it for that reason alone, he'd be more concerned in finding out what I had brought him than the odd questions, for now anyways.
I pulled out the bag, with my scales in it and showed him. Ever seen anything like this?
He took the bag and inspected the contents without removing them. I can't tell off-hand what they are from, it's to bad that they're single scales a full or even partial peel is a much easier way to identify something, follow me. He walked back into the back room, and I followed. He had all sorts of high end equipment in there, I was impressed and let a low whistle. He sat down in front of a microscope and took a set of forceps off the table next to him, and carefully removed one scale from the bag, placing it on a slide, and set it into place under the microscope. He sat there studying it for a few minutes, obviously interested in what he saw, he spun around and rummaged through a drawer eventually producing a small notepad and pen, and busily started taking notes. I stood behind him and waited for a while then my curiosity got the better of me.
So, do you know what they're from?
He jumped, and turned towards me, grinning a bit sheepishly. I completely forgot that you were still here, I'm used to working alone, you see. As for your scale sample, I honestly have no idea what they are from, I've never even heard of anything with scales like this.
What do you mean?
If I'm right then these scales are almost impervious to fire, and most mildly corrosive agents, whatever these are off of has some of the most unique traits that I have ever seen in a long time. You said that you found these in your home?
Well, yeah bu-
Where about would you say?
I dunno, I just remember that there have never been scales anywhere in the house before.
Pity, I would have loved to see a specimen in person.
I chocked back a laugh.
He cocked an eyebrow. Something funny about what I said?
If only you knew. I thought. Not really, I just thought of something funny that I saw online last night.
He continued staring at me, like he was going to derive some great mystery's answer if he stared long enough. I scratched the back of my neck, and chuckled nervously, wondering how long he was going to keep it up. I pulled my hand away from my neck, and his eye's lit up. I cocked my head to the side at his change, and looked at my hand, under my nail I had a small patch of scales that I had scratched off.