Chapter 22 - Adventures in Babysitting (Through the Looking Glass)
The sound of Emily's voice was still similar enough to what it used to be to make Alisa fidget in place for a moment, not to mention the use of her former alias, but a quick look at the adorable tyke her former tormentor had been turned into was enough to calm her down enough for a smile to begin to form on her face.
"Don't you laugh at me!" Emily insisted angrily. "This should be happening to you, not me! You're the baby!"
Alisa knew she should be mature about the situation, but it was hard to resist the urge to rub Emily's face in their new situation, considering everything the girl had done to her the last time she'd seen her. "I'm the baby?" she asked, raising an eyebrow. "Maybe you should look over at that mirror. Look at those chubby little cheeks, those little arms and legs, and, oh yeah, those Pampers!" Alisa reached between the bars of the crib, patting the crotch of the girl's diaper, surprised to feel a warmth there. "What is this? Are you wet?"
"It was a long naptime," Emily pouted grumpily, pushing Alisa's hand away with a blush, having to use both hands. Alisa only smiled wider. It was a good thing Emily was just a normal sized human, rather than one of the Amazons, or their size difference wouldn't have been nearly as pronounced, and while Alisa still might have preferred someone Emily's new age to be even smaller in comparison to her, she still had no doubt she could pick her up, and pretty much do whatever she wanted.
"So, what happened, Em?" she asked, staring into the crib. "Is this what your mommy always does to you? Does she make you a toddler every night when you aren't off babysitting so you can't get into trouble?"
"What? No! That's ridiculous!" Emily rolled her eyes. "I told you, this should be happening to you! It's your fault!"
"My fault?" Alisa snorted. "I didn't regress you! I..." She paused as she remembered what she had done the last time she'd seen Emily, when she'd been forced to do most of the girl's homework.
"You screwed me, you idiot! You failed every single one of those assignments, and my mom was so pissed, she decided to take me back even further and start over from preschool!" Emily raged, glaring up at Alisa. "I thought maybe you'd be smart enough to do one subject right, but I guess I was wrong!"
"That's what you get for passing your homework off on a 'baby'," Alisa snapped back defensively, before something else the girl had said caught her attention. "Wait, even further? Was she going to regress you anyway?"
"No, she already had," Emily sighed. "I used to be twenty, and off in college, but I was partying too much, and having trouble with my grades, so my mom decided I needed to go through high school again so I could be better prepared or something. And then, because of you, I couldn't even do that!"
Alisa wanted to point out that if one homework assignment made that much of a difference, she couldn't have been doing that well in the first place, but considering some of the stories she'd read, sometimes that was all it took to incite this sort of punishment. Instead, she asked, "If you were already in college, shouldn't your high school work have been really easy?"
"It was, in the beginning," Emily admitted. "But the longer you stay regressed, the more your brain conforms to your new age. I can vaguelly remember being in college, but anything from classes or anything specific like that is pretty much all gone." She looked sad, and, despite how the girl had treated her the night before, Alisa couldn't helping feeling bad for her. This new body of hers meant that almost everything about her was going to be erased, sealed away in her mind like a distant dream, leaving her a helpless toddler.
"That's horrible," Alisa shook her head.
"Yeah, but it's nothing compared to what Ms. Farber is going to do to you when I tell her you're here! And it doesn't even look like you're in your diapers! I hope she lets me watch her spank the living daylights out of you!"
Alisa sighed. It was hard to feel sorry for her when she continued to insist this was her fault. Part of her almost bought into it, but she had to remind herself that, had Emily not forced her to do her homework for her, it probably wouldn't have happened. "How are you going to tell her?" she asked. "You're trapped in a crib. I don't see any phones in there with you, either?" She looked around the room, walking over to a pile of old baby toys that she assumed had belonged to Emily the first time she'd been through toddlerhood, grabbing a toy telephone. "Is this what you want? Are you going to call her on this?"
She spotted a small footstool and dragged it over to the crib, climbing up on it and then getting up on her toes to drop the pink, plastic toy over the side. "There you go!" she teased. "Call her!"
"Shut up," Emily sulked.
"I don't think I like you talking to me that way," Alisa said, staying up on the footstool for a minute, liking the extra height it gave her, making her feel all the more superior to her tiny prey. "I think you still don't understand the situation, little lady. I think you're still under the impression that you're in charge, but guess what? Now I'm the babysitter, not you. You are the baby. If you're having trouble remembering that, just look down at your wet little diaper. The only way you're getting out of it is if I decide to change you!"
Emily sat down, folding her arms and pouting, not saying anything. Alisa sighed as she watched her, having to admit that she did feel kind of bad for yelling at her. Whatever Emily had done to her, it probably wasn't really fair to take advantage of this opportunity to get revenge. She knew if she was in the same situation, she would be terrified. She stared at the girl for a few moments, then reached up, undoing the latches on the side of the crib and lowering it so she could reach in and pick up the little girl.
"What are you doing?" Emily squirmed in her grip, almost making Alisa drop her.
"I'm changing you!" Alisa said. "I don't want you to get a rash." With the stool, she could have reached the top of the changing table, but for someone her size, lifting Emily up onto it would have been pretty difficult, so she set her down on the floor. "Just hold still for a minute."
She just watched Emily for a couple seconds, making sure the girl didn't try anything, before stepping off the stool and pushing it over to the changing table. Emily, in turn, was watching her suspiciously, as if she was sure she couldn't just be doing this to be nice, that she had to have some sort of angle. Alisa gathered up the supplies and set them down, spreading out a changing pad in front of the crib and then giving Emily an expectant look.
"I can do it myself," Emily grumbled, but she seemed to already know that wouldn't work, since she laid down anyway.
After having so many of her own diapers changed here, it was a little odd for Alisa to find herself being the one doing the changing. She untaped Emily's Pamper, cleaning the girl up before sliding a fresh one beneath her. She spent a moment contemplating getting her revenge, before Emily whined, "What's taking so long?!"
Alisa didn't answer, she just began sprinkling the baby powder, then grabbing a mini-enema she'd happened to see among the other supplies and slipping it into the girl's backside. Emily squeaked and squirmed, which only prompted Alisa to squeeze the bulb, not wanting the girl to pull it out with her movements. Quickly, Alisa pulled the front of the diaper shut and taped it tightly in place, unable to stop herself from grinning down at Emily.
"Why did you do that?!" Emily sniffled, pulling herself into a seated position before stumbling to her feet. "You little bitch!"
"A sweet girl like you shouldn't use language like that," Alisa explained, trying to sound patient. "And you're the little one now. Besides, you made me stay in my messy diaper all evening yesterday; I think it's only fair you get to feel what that was like, for however long I decide is appropriate."
"That is not fair!" Emily stomped her foot, face getting red. "I'm already becoming a baby, why are you rubbing it in? Why are you being so mean to me?"
Alisa was surprised to see Emily start to cry, suddenly feeling bad for her little act of revenge. "I just... It's just because... Yesterday, you..." She bit her bottom lip, thinking back to what Emily had said before about what happened when she got regressed. Did she even remember the day before? Was it really fair to punish her for something she didn't recall doing?
"I don't wanna go poopy in my diaper!" Emily wailed, making Alisa feel even worse about herself.
"I'm sorry!" she said. "I didn't think.." She stopped herself short of asking the girl if she wanted to use the potty, to try to smooth things over, reminding herself just how coherent Emily had been before the diaper change. It seemed like a pretty strange coincidence, her mental regression kicking in right then, right when Emily wanted to get out of doing something. Alisa had gotten the feeling before that the mental degradation was more of a gradual thing, but now, it just seemed to happen all at once. The little monster was playing her!
...Or was she? She didn't really know how it worked. She hated to think she was being cruel to someone who was effectively just three years old just because one version of her had been mean to her. It was probably like how she'd felt, getting blamed for everything the her in this world had done, except Emily wasn't even really old enough to process it all, if she wasn't pretending. In fact, the only reason she had to think that Emily would be losing her memories was the girl's own words, and who was to say that she hadn't lied about that?
As she stood there and watched, Emily began to fidget, clamping her hands to the back of her diaper and doing a potty dance, but never once seeming to think to ask to use the bathroom. Did that mean she was faking or not? Alisa's brain was hurting from trying to figure it out, and finally, she picked up the wiggly toddler and put her back in the crib, locking the side back in place as she did her best to ignore the girl's pitiful face.
"Meanie!" Emily called her, tears trickling from her eyes.
"I'm sorry," Alisa said. "I just..." She shook her head, feeling more sure that Emily was manipulating her. "No. Emily, you aren't fooling me! You know you deserve this for yesterday, and for what you did to Ms. Farber's poor niece! This is only fair, and you aren't..."
But Emily just kept crying. "You're mean! I didn't do anything! I'm a big girl, I don't wanna use my diaper! Please, I want my wand!"
Alisa began doubting herself again, just enough that she took a few steps towards the pile of toys, looking for some kind of fairy princess wand the girl might like to play with. "I don't see any wand," she told her, shrugging. "Do you want your little stuffed kitty? That's kind of..."
"No! I want my wand!" Emily wailed.
"I don't see it," Alisa told her, looking around for any other stashes of toys and finding none. "I'm not sure..."
"Mommy took it!" Emily sniffled. "I want it!"
That made Alisa a little nervous, but she knew it didn't necessarily mean anything. Her mother might have just thought it wasn't appropriate for someone Emily's new age, or she might have taken it back when Emily had been this age the first time around. Either way, if it would calm her down, Alisa supposed it couldn't hurt to go look. After all, Emily was safely in her crib, and if this "wand" looked dangerous, she could always say no.
"I'll be back in a minute," Alisa said, walking out of the nursery and back down the hall, part of her wondering just what kind of a wand she was looking for. She had assumed it was some toy the girl had an attachment to, but as she thought about it, she remembered that there were also certain vibrators that were called wands. Her mother confiscating one of those would make sense, and it was possible that her regressing mind simply remembered the good feeling it brought without realizing what it actually was. There was no way she'd give that to a child, of course, but after her various adventures, she couldn't deny that she found the idea of it appealing herself. She might not be able to touch herself there, but surely it wouldn't count if she used a machine...
But she found neither of those things in Emily's mother's room. She looked first in the woman's desk, then poked around her closet, but there was nothing. She did see some kind of metal contraption in the bottom desk drawer, looking like it had been cobbled together from bits and pieces of some high tech devices she'd never seen before, but she brushed past it during her initial search, and it was only once the closet proved fruitless that her mind wandered back to it.
She went back to the desk and pulled the thing out, looking at it. It was sort of long and thin, sort of like a wand, she supposed, but otherwise looked nothing like one. Surely there was no way this was what the girl had meant, was there? What could she want with it? There was no way she'd let an actual child play with it - there were too many exposed circuits and wires - and if the still adult Emily wanted it, she was just as hesitant to hand it over. It occurred to her that she'd never actually been told how Emily had been regressed. After her adventures in the robo-nursery, and with Robo-Nanny, she'd just assumed that the regression had been done technologically as well, but there were just as many stories about witches using magic to de-age people as there were about mysterious machines doing the same thing. The thing in her hand looked easily like it could fit into either category.
Was this what had zapped away more than a decade of Emily's age? It would make sense that she'd want it if that were the case, since surely there was a way to reverse the process... But should she help Emily with that? It had seemed like an awfully harsh punishment, and a scary fate for anyone, despite what they had done to her. She didn't like the idea of leaving her like that, but if she did re-age her, who was to say that she wouldn't call Mommy after all. Back at her full age, she could easily keep Alisa there until Mommy got there, and given the woman's plans for her, Alisa had no desire to return.
Of course, all of that was moot if this wasn't the right thing after all. She turned it over in her hands, searching for some kind of label, something to tell her what it was, or what it did. All she found was a single, red button. There was no setting for advancing or reversing time, or one to choose a particular age. Unless it really was part magic, it seemed very unlikely to be behind Emily's regression. Nonetheless, she wasn't about to just hand it over. She set it down on the top of the desk, making sure neither point was aiming at her, since she wasn't sure which was the front, and, with only the slightest hesitation, pushed the button.
It felt a lot like going through the door had, though it was over even faster. She was left feeling just as disoriented, however, as she found herself suddenly in a different place, staring out at a set of very tall wooden bars. She reached out for them, only to see that her hands seemed to have changed, looking much shorter and chubbier, much more like a toddler's hands. She felt a sinking feeling in her stomach that had nothing to do with the cramp that hit her a moment later, nor the fact that, a moment after that, she saw her own body walk through the door of the nursery, holding the "wand".
"Boy, you really are stupid, aren't you?" Emily marveled, looking down at her new body. "Well, I guess this is a little better, anyway." She smiled at Alisa, now trapped in the crib, and inside her own old body, and walked over to her, setting the wand on top of the changing table before looking in at her. "Now, what was that you were saying about being in charge?"