Story By Crysttail
Wonderful art by J.C.
In an effort to help increase both the population of endangered species and the contents of their pocketbooks, scientists worked on a number of different projects. One such project, founded by a company named Pyrasphere was interested in improving the fertility of the endangered species and developed the PEFD serum, which had proven quite successful in labratory experiments to increase not only fertility but litter size as well.
After several years of development and preliminary testing, the time had come to do a field test, so a man was sent to the Serengeti with a dart gun that was designed to inject targets with the serum. The designers anticipated that the tester might run into several animals at once and so designed the dart rifle in a way similar to a revolver, with several chambers that rotated, allowing the tester to fire rapidly at several different animals. The also sent a tranquilizer gun of the same design for protection against a few of the larger animals.
Fred sighed and wiped the sweat from his brow as he peered through the heat around him. He had been excited about the prospect of going to the Serengeti, but now he regretted it. It was hot, buggy, and he couldn't get close enough to inject any animals. He had heard that there was a pride of lions in the area, but so far he had been unable to locate them. He had spotted a few solitary animals in the distance, but had not been able to drive close enough before they vanished into the grass.
He sighed again as he leaned back against his jeep. Suddenly he thought he saw movement in the grass near him and he instinctively reached for the nearest weapon, thinking that he had grabbed a tranguilizer gun. Warily, he peered through the tall grass, trying to spot whatever was out there, but the grass had stopped moving.
Suddenly, a large cheetah leapt from the tall grass towards Fred, who shouted and instinctively fired at her, eight shots until the weapon was empty. The cheetah landed near him, took an unsteady step forward and fell down, surprised by the stinging sensation as all eight darts hit struck her chest and emptied their contents. Fred turned and jumped into the jeep, driving off too quickly in his fear to notice that it was not the tranquilizer gun that he had grabbed, but the air gun with the PEFD serum.
The cheetah lay dazed for several minutes, then got to her feet. She remembered the stinging sensation and saw eight small darts stuck into her chest, she brushed at them with one paw and they easily fell to the ground, leaving almost no mark in her fur. She looked close, but other than a fading stinging sensation, she appeared to be unharmed.
She shrugged at the strange event and turned to walk down to the watering hole to get a drink, sighing a bit at her missed prey. It was getting to be pretty hot out, so she lay down and napped in the shade of the reeds around the water.
When she awoke, she had forgotten about the strange event and got up to get a drink. She stopped suddenly as she came upon a male cheetah, snarling at the invader to her territory. She prepared to fight him, but realized that a strange feeling had come over, much like being in heat, though it was the wrong time for that. She found herself allowing the male to move closer, and after the apropriate rituals, the two mated, their growls and purrs of pleasure heard long into the night.
When the cheetah awoke late the next morning to find that the male was long gone, back to his own territory, leaving the female to hers. The female yawned and stretched as only a feline can do. Something didn't feel quite right though in her belly as she stretched. Looking back, she thought she saw the slightest bulge. Odd, she thought, and shrugged, going about her daily routine. She was able to catch a gazelle that evening and fell asleep full and content, forgetting about the events of the day before.
The next morning, the first thing she noticed was an odd heaviness in her belly, though it looked almost the same as the day before, with just the slightest bulge to her sides. She figured it was just left over from her meal the day before, and as she went through the day, she didn't notice as her belly continued to grow heavier, now bulging more noticeably.
It wasn't until she tried to pass through a narrow gap between
two rocks the next day that she noticed what was happening. Always before
she had been able to slip easily through the tight space, but now her
belly was so swollen that she couldn't fit through and nearly got stuck.
once more, she found that she was too big and had to go around. Looking
back at the bulge in her belly, she thought she looked kind of like other
cheetah's she had seen who were going to have cubs. She shook her head
and figured she was just imagining things.
The next day however, there could be no denying it. Her belly had continued to swell during the night and it was now quite obvious that she was pregnant. In addition to her heavy sides, her teats had become much more prominant, though still mostly hidden in her fur. She could feel the weight of her belly and thought she could even feel occasional movement from within.
Her belly continued to swell throughout the day, not fast
enough to be visible, but enough that she was visibly larger when she went
than when she had awoken. Its growing weight made her stumble slightly as
she walked down to get a drink of water, though slowly got used to it as
day went on. In the early dusk she was lucky and managed to catch a small
gazelle, her increased weight helping her bring the animal down, though it
slowed her speed noticeably.
The next morning, she appeared to be nearly at full term, her belly greatly heavy and distended with her unborn cubs. She tried to ignore it and the movement inside, but by evening, her pregnant belly brushed her thighs as she walked, further slowing her down. She ate some more of the gazelle and slowly made her way around her territory, renewing her markings.
The next day she could barely walk, her belly heavy and large
with the kits inside. When she sat back on her hindquarters, her gravid
nearly touched her forelegs and bulged widely to each side. She looked
over herself in amazement. She hadn't seen a pregnant cheetah since her
had been swollen with her second litter, but she could remember that even
then her mother had not grown this large, and certainly not this fast.
that, she was certain that she was carrying cubs herself and could feel
them moving inside from time to time, though she had no idea how many were
Before she settled down to sleep, she finished off the rest of the gazelle and laboriously dragged the carcass away from her resting spot. Despite her concern for her size and rate of growth, she slept soundly until the next morning, worn out by the effort of carrying her cubs around.
She awoke late the next morning to find that although she
could sit up, her belly was now too heavy for her to stand and walk, her
heavily gravid and distended, much larger than she had ever heard of any
cheetah ever being. She was glad that she had chosen a spot shaded by the
grass as she sat through the hot African day. She was also glad that she
had taken the time to remark her territory a few days earlier, knowing
that it would
discourage predators from the area for at least a few more days. She
couldn't help but wonder what would happen if she continued to grow like
the next few days.
As the day grew on, she grew weary and drifted off to sleep. Fortunately, there were few predators in the area and she was able to remain unnoticed as she napped in the afternoon and slept through the night. Early the next morning, before dawn had arose, she was awoken by a great stirring in her belly. She felt excited as she realized that the time had come at last, but soon became worried as the stirring grew stronger and stronger. After a few minutes though her instincts took over and she was able to relax a little, her breathing growing deeper as she tensed muscles she'd never used before. After a few moments, she felt the first kit slide through her sex to emerge between her legs. She leaned around to lick him clean even as the next kit emerged. She soon lost count in the darkness and the sun was rising as the last kit emerged and she cleaned him off.
She felt the kits against her belly, fighting each other to get at her milk. As the light of day crept over the horizon, for the first time she could see and count her kits. She sighed happily and lay back to rest, purring happily.
For Now Anyways