Inside Out

Inside Out
(Based off the Film Inside Out)

Inside the mind of Chris, were five emoticons that provided emotional
order in his life. Each emoticon had their own personality, but they
were oriented towards one emotion. The five were joy, fear, disgust,
anger, and sadness. These five worked together in a control center
inside Chris' head and regulated the flow of memories.

Joy was a bubbly woman that took the leading role in Chris' head. Fear
was a man that discouraged Chris from making reckless decisions. Disgust
was a woman that controlled Chris' personal preferences whether it be
food, movies, music, hobbies, or how he felt about other people. Anger
was a man who forcefully intervened on the controls when Chris was
outraged by something. Finally, Sadness was a young man all by himself
and stayed apart from the group. Even so, when he touched the control
panel to make his own memory no one dared to oppose him. Each one took
on their respective colors of yellow, purple, green, red, and blue.

Chris' family moved from Minnesota to San Francisco. Everything was
different now. The houses were small and more compact, traffic was
higher, crime was higher, and his favorite sport of hockey wasn't
popular. Chris was a teenage boy who wasn't excited for this new move.
His dad got a new job at an investment firm that paid considerably more
but living costs also increased.

Chris unpacked his things and after a few days went to the nearest high
school. The school was much more diverse than in Minnesota. He became
anxious as to whether he would fit in with these California students. The
five emoticons watched the screen as Chris went through the halls of the
school.

"This could be something new and exciting," Joy said enthusiastically.

"He needs to watch out for bullies," Fear said anxiously.

Chris saw some guys chatting together at the end of the hall.
Cautiously, he approached to introduce himself. "These guys are hot,
especially that one," Disgust said punching a button.

Chris immediately felt a weird sensation as he stared at the guys. They
were different to be sure, but he was feeling aroused somehow. "What are
you doing?" Joy asked Disgust dumbfounded.

"Do not catch us staring," Fear said punching a button.

Chris looked away and shook his head in confusion. He found his locker
and arranged what he needed for his first class. Chris came into the
classroom and made a smooth introduction about where he was from.
Sadness casually walked over to the console and lightly touched the
button causing Chris a small tinge of sadness as he remembered what he
left behind. Sadness then walked off leaving the other four behind.

"Was that really called for? Let's think positive," Joy said touching
the button.

"This classroom is safe," Fear said reassured.

Chris' eyes wander across the classroom and wondered if any of the girls
in the class were attractive. Disgust stayed at the control console
bored. "Disgust, do you have anything to contribute?" Joy asked.

"Not really," Disgust replied.

Chris then noticed the guys in the class and wondered if any of them were
into sports. Disgust then started touching the button causing Chris
discomfort. "Why do you do it for the boys and not the girls?" Joy asked
Disgust accusingly.

"I don't know. Maybe shake something up a little," Disgust said
defensively.

Chris eventually went to gym class and after a game of basketball hit the
showers. "Do not slip. Do not slip," Fear said as he entered.

"We could have won if that short kid didn't miss every single time!"
Anger flared up.

"Chris was at the same level as everyone else," Joy said proudly and
touched the button.

Chris was in a good mood as he took off his clothes and entered the
shower. Disgust watched the screen dreamily while the other three looked
away aghast. Disgust pressed the button sending butterfly feelings in
Chris' mind. He tried to avoid thinking about the guys in the shower and
quickly showered off.

"What is your deal?" Joy demanded of Disgust.

"I can't help it. I see attractive young men, and I push the button,"
Disgust said innocently.

"Chris is a guy, he's supposed to like girls," Anger pointed out.

"Kids will talk if anyone finds out," Fear said apprehensively.

"Find out about what?" Joy asked annoyed.

"Disgust controls Chris' personal preferences, and she's making Chris
gay," Anger concluded.

"I am not...I think," Disgust replied.

"Why would you do that, Disgust?" Joy pleaded.

"Think about it. Men are stronger, they have a great sense of humor,
they're aggressive, and they like adventure just like Chris," Disgust
said.

"That's the whole point, Disgust. A female is the opposite of a male
creating a complimentary dynamic," Anger explained.

"So, we make Chris a girl. What's the big deal?" Disgust asked.

"What will people say?" Fear asked freaked out.

"There's nothing to fear, because it isn't happening," Joy argued.

"Why not? It happens sometimes," Disgust argued back.

"In very rare cases," Anger pointed out.

"We can be rare," Disgust said.

"You would erase all the progress we have made up until this point. What
about all the years of building boyhood memories," Joy said showing a
secondary console with core memories.

"Maybe your right," Disgust conceded. "I just wanted to experiment."

"Experiment over!" Anger concluded.

The system suddenly went blue as Chris started feeling depressed. The
four looked back and saw Sadness touching the core memories. "What have
you done?" Joy accused.

"Chris no longer feels his old life has any meaning in this place. It is
only natural he would feel sad," Sadness replied.

"But all of the core memories?" Joy demanded.

"Just some," Sadness said reasonably.

Joy gave Sadness an annoyed look as he walked off. The rest of the day
went smoothly and Chris finally went to sleep. Fear took the night's
watch as the system shut down. He saw random dream images until he saw
something strange. Chris was standing in front of a mirror but instead
of seeing himself, he saw the image of a girl that looked similar to him.

"He just wishes he had a sister," Fear commented on the dream.

The mirror image mimicked Chris' movements perfectly. He wasn't dreaming
about a hypothetical sister but about himself. Fear punched the
"emergency button" sending alarms into the control room. Chris woke up
with a start.

The other four emoticons entered the control center confused by the
alarms. "What happened?" Joy asked.

"There was this dream! It didn't make any sense!" Fear began.

"Slow down. Take your time," Anger said impatiently.

"There was this mirror, and he saw himself. Only instead of himself it
was this girl," Fear continued.

"So?" Anger asked annoyed.

"So? He's dreaming he's a girl," Fear said panicked.

"That's not a big deal. Boys dream about girls at this stage," Disgust
said.

"No, he had become that girl," Fear clarified.

"Odd," Joy remarked.

"Chris is filled with self-loathing. He hates this new environment, and
he hates himself," Sadness commented.

"If that were true, I would know about it," Anger said outraged.

"You don't understand. This isn't rage but grief," Sadness corrected.

"You did this by touching the core memories," Joy accused.

"I played a small part, but I can't take all the credit," Sadness pointed
at Disgust.

"What? Me?" Disgust asked innocently.

"His preferences are changing because of you," Sadness said simply.

"You better fix this," Anger said to Disgust.

"I think you're making too big a deal out of this," Disgust said
defensively.

"I'll take your shift," Joy said to Fear.

"False alarm," Anger said annoyed walking away.

Sadness gave Joy a look and then departed as well. Joy gave him a look
of concern and then watched the remaining dream scenes as Chris fell back
to sleep.

***

The next morning, the train of thought pulled up to the control center
and delivered a number of day-dreams and ideas to unload. Disgust came
upon the unloaded stacks and brought them into a storage room. As she
touched them, she affected the ideas.

Chris came to class and became bored with history class like every other
student. Fantasies started popping into his head about sexy women.
"About time," Anger grinned.

Joy watched uncertain as the day-dreams continued. "See, I fixed it,"
Disgust said proud of herself.

The four continued to watch and noticed that Chris wasn't aroused by the
images in his head. It was as if he was imagining himself as the women.
Disgust didn't touch the button creating no sense of arousal in Chris'
mind. "Stop that!" Anger said suddenly touching the button.

Chris felt immediate anger at himself for thinking such thoughts. After
class, he went into the restroom to clear his head. He looked at his
boyish face and fixed his hair. "Get a grip," he said to himself.

Anger turned to Disgust. "You need to push the button for disgust when
that happens," he demanded.

"Don't tell me what to do," Disgust shot back.

"Easy there," Joy said to them both.

Sadness intervened touching the remaining core memories. "Sadness! What
have you done?" Joy said shocked.

The core memory balls became blue and then a tube came down to collect
them. "No," Joy said trying to gather the balls. Sadness did nothing as
Joy and Anger tried to gather up the core memory balls. Sadness then
suddenly kicked Joy towards the tube sending her straight up.

"Why?" Fear asked.

Sadness said nothing and merely advanced against Anger. "You want a
piece of me, kid?" Anger asked readying his fists. Anger gave Sadness a
few body-shots.

"You can't make me feel more pain than I already do," Sadness told him.
Sadness then took a hold of Anger and threw him up the tube.

With both of them gone, Sadness eyed Fear and Disgust. "Do you wish to
challenge me as well?" he asked.

"No, take charge," Fear said immediately.

Sadness eyed Disgust and then pushed Fear aside. "It is time for the age
of Sadness," he said.

***

Chris felt a sense of bitterness throughout the day. He didn't like
moving and leaving his friends behind. Nothing seemed right, but he
didn't feel angry about it either. He just felt lost and numb inside.

"You will continue to have Chris feel for the boys in his class. When
they do not return his affections, he will become sad," Sadness ordered.

"As you wish," Disgust said reluctantly.

"If the other kids find out he is different they will hurt him," Fear
warned.

"The risk is minimal at this stage," Sadness replied.

Time went by as Disgust continued to have Chris become attracted to those
of his same gender. Fear kept Chris from ever telling anyone of his
problems. Eventually, the bullies began to notice Chris' behavior.

"I saw you looking at me weird," the bully said confronting Chris.

"I don't know what you're talking about," Chris replied defensively.

"We're under attack!" Fear said sending alarms throughout the control
center. The bully took a hold of Chris and punched him a few times to
the chest and face. The bully then left content with himself. Sadness
touched the button creating tears in Chris' eyes from the attack.

After the battle, Fear confronted Sadness and Disgust. "I cannot allow
that to happen again," he said.

"You will do as you're told," Sadness replied.

"Yes, Sir," Fear cowered.

Sadness dismissed Fear and turned to Disgust. "We shall now go to the
next stage."

"What is the next stage?" Disgust asked fearful of what it would be.

"You will have Chris become disgusted with his own body. He will hate
his physical appearance, the acne, the hair, and you know what else,"
Sadness ordered.

"Okay," Disgust agreed.

***

Chris looked at himself in the mirror when he came home and started
hating his appearance. Everything about his body made him feel sick. He
took a shower but didn't feel clean afterwards. He looked at his hands
and saw the hairs on his knuckles.

"I have to do something," he said.

Time went by as Chris began reading everything he could on human anatomy.
Fear and Disgust did their research while Sadness took control of the
console. Finally, Chris stared at the needle he was about to inject
himself with.

"Bad idea, bad idea!" Fear said as he took the needle.

Sadness forbid Fear from touching the console as Chris injected himself.
"He will go down an irreversible path," Disgust told Sadness.

"I know," Sadness replied.

"He could become happy from the results," Disgust said.

"No, no matter how many improvements he makes to his body, he will never
feel it is enough," Sadness replied.

***

Months went by as Chris continued to give himself estrogen injections.
His face became softer and more feminine looking. He had stopped working
out reducing his muscle mass. Acne was still a problem due to the
hormonal imbalance. He grew his hair longer but his parents figured he
was simply going for the rock-star look. Even fat deposits started
growing underneath his nipples forming very small breasts.

"So far, the injections haven't killed him," Fear said.

Sadness dismissed Fear. "Promote the idea that he has become a freak,
one that is neither male nor female," Sadness ordered Disgust.

She reluctantly complied.

Chris stared at his body in the mirror with utter disgust. He began to
waiver in what he was doing. He had no friends, no romantic prospects,
and was an outcast. He couldn't shower with the boys, so he cut gym out
of his schedule. He was forced to wear a sweater even on hot days. His
parents still had no idea what he was doing to himself, and he feared
what would happen if they did.

Chris went into the family bathroom and found a bottle of sleeping pills.
The three emoticons watched as he contemplated taking them. "It would
appear the game is finished," Sadness sighed in victory.

Disgust and Fear stared at Sadness wide-eyed. Fear pressed the emergency
alarm, and Chris withdrew from the pill bottle. Sadness eyed Fear who
cowered away. "Have him disgusted with himself for even considering the
idea," Sadness ordered her.

***

Several more months went by and Chris continued to change from the
hormone injections. "His voice is still masculine. Make him feel shame
for it," Sadness ordered Disgust.

Sadness then turned to Fear. "Make sure Chris doesn't speak or others
may discover that his appearance doesn't match his voice."

"Yes, Sir," Fear said lamely.

A sudden impact hit the glass walls of the control center. The three
turned around and saw Joy and Anger trying to get inside. "Joy, Anger!"
Disgust gushed happy to see them.

"Don't fall!" Fear said to them.

Anger saw Sadness over at the control panel not helping them. "That guy
really ticks me off!" he said and then fire roared from his head. The
glass melted and shattered allowing them through.

"You three have caused Chris pain," Joy accused.

"You can't stop what I have put in motion," Sadness told her.

"There is always hope," Joy said advancing on Sadness.

"Fear?" Sadness asked lazily.

"I am standing with Joy," Fear said departing Sadness' side.

Sadness saw that he was outnumbered. "The final solution," Sadness said
operating the console.

"Stop him!" Anger said.

Chris had been poisoning himself with alcohol and drugs at the time Anger
and Joy entered the control center. "Just a little more," Sadness said
as Chris took the liquor bottle.

Joy kicked Sadness away from the control console. Anger took control of
Sadness keeping him at bay. "My powers have doubled since we last saw
each other," Sadness said punching Anger away.

Joy looked for a solution on the console as Sadness slowly advanced on
her. He pushed her away knocking her to the floor. Fear punched Sadness
to the face. "Where does this courage come from, Fear?" Sadness asked.

"No more," Fear said resolved.

With unusual strength, Fear punched Sadness farther away from the
console. Sadness took each punch without emotion or care. Joy and Anger
came over to the console. "What do we do?" Anger wondered.

"Emergency shut down!" Fear said as he fought Sadness.

Joy pressed the button shutting Chris down. Chris dropped the bottle and
passed out on the floor. Joy and Anger then came over to Fear to assist
him. Sadness punched Fear in the gut disabling him. Anger and Joy
forced Sadness against a wall. Disgust looked on as Sadness was being
overwhelmed. She walked over to Sadness and punched him hard to the face
knocking him out.

***

Moments later, Sadness' limp body was in the center of the control
center. "What do we do with him?" Fear wondered.

"We do what he did to us," Anger said.

"I agree," Joy said.

The tube came down as if to collect more core memories. Joy took the
blue core memories that had been collected and threw them up the chute.
Sadness was brought to the chute and disappeared.

"It's over," Fear said relieved.

"Let's look over the damage," Joy said taking charge.

Joy looked over medical reports on all biological sectors. "This isn't
good," Anger noted.

"What do we do?" Fear asked.

"Well, we can either reverse the damage Sadness has done, or we let it
continue on this path," Joy considered.

"Reversing the change would require surgery at this stage," Disgust said.

"What are you saying? We have him become a half-man-half-woman?" Anger
demanded of her.

"She's right. We have to think this through," Joy said uncertain. "We
can't just let it stay the way it is in between genders," Joy reasoned.

"There are risks to continuing the process. There could be strokes,"
Fear noted.

"Let's face facts. Chris is attracted to boys in his class, he has been
taking female hormones for the last several months, and he hates his body
as it is," Joy said.

"If he continues down this path, he would require surgery for a sex-
change," Fear gasped. "That means cutting off his testicles and
inverting his penis!"

"Ewww," Disgust chimed in.

"Our mission is to spread our seed far and wide," Anger reminded them.

"Is that really necessary? There are already thousands of people in the
city," Disgust said.

"She has a point," Joy admitted.

"He's an only child. We must continue the blood-line," Anger insisted.

"He has cousins," Disgust pointed out.

"At this point, if we do not do something he will self-destruct," Joy
said to them. "You all know what that means."

The three nodded. "Self-preservation always comes first," Joy reminded
them.

"Let's vote," Fear suggested.

"I vote we make Chris a happy girl," Joy smiled.

"I agree," Disgust said.

"You don't have an opinion after you betrayed Chris by siding with
Sadness," Anger said to Disgust.

"No, let's make this equal. The past is the past," Joy said.

"I vote no," Anger said stubbornly.

Fear looked at the others uncertain. "There's a lot of risk and danger in
this move, but self-destruct is even worse. I vote yes."

"Then it's settled," Joy said gleefully.

***

Chris woke up feeling the worst hangover of his life. He had a number of
bottles in his room and there were pills lying around on his desk.
"Chris, are you awake. Its noon," his mother knocked on his door.

Chris considered the mess and decided it was time for an intervention.
He opened the door revealing his decayed state. "I think we should
talk."

The emoticons watched as Chris began to talk to his parents about how he
was feeling. He admitted everything he had done, the good, the bad, and
the ugly. After a few hours of talking, his parents embraced him.

"Sadness is gone. Why is he crying?" Anger asked.

"Those are tears of joy," Joy smiled.

***

Chris was given better medical care by a psychiatrist and family doctor.
Chris told the doctors everything and was diagnosed as Transgender. He
was given estrogen pills to continue his treatment. Chris was placed in
special class to work on softening his voice. He was taken out of school
and home-schooled by his mother while his father worked at the firm. He
would attend LGBT meetings where he could freely discuss his feelings.
With Sadness banished, Chris felt content and happy with himself.

"Mom, Dad, I want to be called Christine from now on," she requested.

"Christine it is," her father agreed.

The family hugged and from that time on Chris was called Christine.

In the control center, the four emoticons began working on the core
memories. "I think it is time to look forward into the future. Let's
dump these old memories, so they'll be forgotten," Joy said.

The four went to work on organizing the memories. Islands of Chris' past
became dark and then crumbled to pieces. Chris' hockey obsession, his
old camping trips with his father, his biking trips, his adventures as a
male character in video games, memories of action/adventure movies, and
how his room used to look. Christine began to forget her old life as a
boy as she looked to the future. As the process continued, several
islands were destroyed.

"Nice job!" Joy said happy with the crew.

Disgust was about to touch the button when Anger stopped her. "You don't
get to touch it," he said rudely.

"It's my job," she said defensively.

"It's your fault we had this mess," Anger accused.

"What about love?" Disgust asked.

"Chris has his parents," Anger replied.

"Let's postpone relationships until we have Christine ready," Joy said
delicately.

***

Fear bit his nails nervously as Christine went under. The control center
shut down as Christine went into surgery. Finally, the control center
was back online with Christine waking up. "Medical report," Joy ordered.

Images of what happened displayed on the screen. Implants had been
placed inside Christine's chest to create B-cup size breasts. The Adam's
apple had been shaved as well. Down below, the testicles had been
removed and the penis inverted. The body was under the influence of
powerful pain killers but the control center's alarms were going off.

"It's over," Anger realized.

"It's going to be okay," Joy assured him. "What do you think?" Joy asked
Disgust.

"We'll have to see when everything heals," she said.

"So many things could go wrong, the body does not like this," Fear said
panicked.

"Others have done this, too. It'll be fine," Joy told him.

***

While in college, Christine was on her own. Seemingly always happy,
Christine decided to become a teacher or work with in child-care. She
also attracted plenty of male attention, but she never seemed to notice.

"Can I do my job, now?" Disgust asked bored.

"Alright, I think it's been enough time," Joy said.

"You better not screw this up," Anger warned her.

Christine suddenly became aware of her sexuality and began taking an
interest in men around her. She started dating men for the first time.
She kept her secret guarded as Fear always worried what would happen if
she ever "outed" herself.

Finally, she found an understanding man and dated steadily for a few
months. "Good work," Joy said to Disgust on her choice.

"I had to reject so many," Disgust said exhausted.

"I don't see the point. They can't have children together," Anger said
confused.

"It makes them happy," Joy told him.

"What about STDs?" Fear said uncertain.

"Relax. He looks like a good guy," Joy told him.

***

Christine finally felt confident enough to become sexually open with
Alex. The four emoticons stared in silence as Christine kissed Alex and
started taking her clothes off. "What if he's too rough? What if it
doesn't fit? What if she doesn't like it?" Fear listed off.

"Ruining the mood, Fear," Joy silenced him.

"He better last longer than a minute," Anger demanded.

"What do you care if he can't impregnate her," Joy chided him. Anger
softened his expression.

The two took off their clothes and Christine took the submissive role on
her back. The four emoticons waited in silence as Alex positioned
himself between her legs. "It's not going to fit," Fear said panicked.

"Shut-up!" the three others shouted at him.

Alex gently and slowly pushed forward meeting some resistance. The
emoticons tensed up as Alex pushed harder and then managed to press
further inside. The emoticons cheered for joy with a mission
accomplished. Alex went all the way inside and the two started to make
love like any other couple.

Disgust felt flustered as Christine was making love for the first time.
"This is really good," she said turned on. "He's doing everything
right," she added.

"Let's give her some room," Joy whispered to the others.

Disgust didn't notice as the others left the control center. She stared
at the screen and occasionally hit the button. Christine felt it
building as Alex picked up speed. The two were moving in rhythm,
breathing heavily, and gasping in pleasure. "Come on," Disgust said to
herself.

Christine felt so many sensations as Alex continued to penetrate her. It
was so different than when she was a boy. She had worked so hard for
this moment; they were a man and a woman coming together. Christine
hesitated to moan unsure of herself but suddenly she forced out a cry as
the orgasm hit her.

"Oh my God!" she cried out as she tensed up.

"Yes!" Disgust said hitting the button repeatedly.

Alex came insider her and the two kissed each other lovingly until they
fell asleep together.

***

"Good morning," Joy said pleasantly as she entered the control center.
Disgust looked tired and exhausted as she continued to press the button.
Christine and Alex had entertained some morning sex and then showered
together.

"You should get some rest," Joy suggested hitting the button herself.

"It's not always going to be that good," Anger said jealous of Joy and
Disgust.

***

Sometime later, Alex and Christine went out to dinner. "You know,
Christine. I would like to know more about your childhood growing up,"
Alex said.

"What's to tell?" Christine replied awkwardly.

"Well, how was it like with your parents in Minnesota?" Alex asked.

"I would rather forget," Christine said uncomfortable.

The emoticons watched as the awkward discussion continued. "Don't push
her button," Anger warned.

"It couldn't have been all bad," Alex pressed.

"I said, I would rather forget it!" Christine said and then stormed off.

Alarms went off as Anger went to maximum power. "You pushed the wrong
button, buddy!"

***

Christine went home and looked at herself in the mirror. She was in a
black dress and looked very beautiful in it. However, Christine couldn't
help but feel there was something wrong about her body. Joy looked over
at Disgust. She shrugged innocent; she hadn't touched the button.

The four emoticons saw island cities spring up and materialize in front
of them. Memory orbs flew through the air towards each of the islands.
The islands of Christine's childhood, thought to be destroyed, had come
back. They all took on a shade of blue.

"How is this possible?" Joy wondered.

"We have to stop him, for good this time," Anger said smacking his fists
together.

"Take over the controls. I'll deal with Sadness," Joy said resolved.

Meanwhile, Christine began to cry as she remembered her boyhood
experiences. "What have I done to myself?" she cried. She looked at her
hands, her arms, her face, and her body looking for anything that
reminded her of her boyhood self. She looked over to a box never opened.

"Don't open the box!" Fear said alarmed.

Christine opened the box and found an old photo album. "This is bad,"
Anger realized.

***

Joy found Sadness out in the open near the memory pit where forgotten
memories disappear forever. Joy watched in awe as Sadness rose up island
cities with his own power. "You can't stop me, Joy," he said to her.

"Why are you doing this?" Joy demanded.

"You haven't destroyed her sadness, merely covered it up," Sadness told
her.

"We were doing fine until now. We don't need you," Joy said angrily.

"How can you truly appreciate joy without sadness? How can you
appreciate success without failure?" Sadness asked rhetorically.

"You nearly destroyed Christine. I won't let you do it again," Joy
pledged.

"Is that what you call her?" Sadness asked disrespectfully. "You've
created an artificial life. A fantasy," Sadness told her.

"I will stop you!" Joy said advancing on him. She punched at him, but
Sadness easily took hold of her hand and forced her to her knees.

"You have grown weak in your complacency while I have grown stronger,"
Sadness said. Joy stared as Sadness started creating cities of
Christine's boyhood memories. "She will remember them all. She will
remember everything you forced her to forget," Sadness said.

"What happens then? What happens when you win?" Joy asked struggling
against him.

"When I win?" Sadness wondered.

"If Christine destroys herself, we will all be gone. There will be no
sadness or joy. There will be nothing. Is that what you want?" Joy
challenged.

"I never thought of what would happen if I actually won," Sadness
admitted.

"I see that it was wrong to keep away these memories from Christine.
They're not all sadness. She lived a good childhood with her parents and
friends. I only thought about the future and never the past," Joy
admitted.

"In order to continue my existence, you must live," Sadness realized
releasing Joy.

Joy raised her hand and memory orbs flowed towards each of the island
cities. The blue structures became white as yellow and blue orbs came
together. The islands became balanced alongside the new islands that had
been created when Chris became Christine.

"Christine requires perspective," Sadness said sending blue memory orbs
into the new islands. "Now, she will appreciate her victories."

Joy nodded in agreement. Sadness knelt before Joy. "Forgive me," he
asked of her.

"You're forgiven. Come home, Sadness," Joy said.

***

Christine looked over the old photographs of when she was a boy. There
were pictures of her catching a fish on a fishing trip when she was
eight, pictures of her roller skating, hockey games, board games with her
father, and birthday parties. As she went through the photo album, tears
flowed from her eyes.

Sadness and Joy entered the control center. Anger was about to say
something, but Joy gave him a look. "She's crying," Disgust reported.

Joy ushered Sadness to the control console to touch the button. "This
time it is different," he said. He took Joy's hand with his own.
"Together," he said. The two touched the button together creating bitter
sweet tears.

Christine smiled as she wiped away her tears and then put the photo album
away. She took out her cell phone and dialed Alex's number. "Uhmm...Alex.
I'm sorry," she said. "I love you."

"I love you, too."

***

Epilogue

Five Years Later

The emoticons watched happily as Christine played with her niece at a
family gathering. Christine appeared beautiful and no one could possibly
know she was anything but a woman her whole life. On her finger was a
wedding ring. Her husband Alex was nearby smiling as Christine and his
niece interacted. Alex and Christine were close to adopting a child of
their own.

In the control center, Anger and Fear had made changes to their
appearance. Anger wore a long red dress, red frizzy hair, and even
redder lipstick in comparison to her already red face. She still had her
moments of rage but had toned down in recent years. Fear wore a purple
dress but refused to wear high heels because it could potentially cause
an accident and break her ankle. She was as nervous as always looking
for any danger but none had really materialized recently.

Joy pushed the button as Christine played games with her niece.
Everything seemed content and stable and one emoticon was noticeably
absent.

"Sadness, why don't you become like everyone else. It can be an all
girls club?" Joy asked.

"No," Sadness said simply wearing jeans and a blue hoody.

"Why not?" Joy asked confused.

"I choose to remember the past," Sadness said.

"Christine is a woman, now. She needs to have a woman's sadness don't
you think?" Joy said brightly.

"Very well," Sadness said. His jeans and hoody morphed into a blue
dress, his physique became shorter and smaller. His arms and legs became
thinner, his chest increased slightly, and his face became more feminine.
His black hair remained short. Her shoes disappeared leaving her
barefoot.

"Finally, joined the club?" Disgust said pleased.

"Be careful what you wish for," Sadness said in a feminine voice that
continued to have a brooding tone. She approached the console as
Christine's niece was called over by her parents. Christine stood up and
felt an empty sense as her niece ran off. Alex was there noticing her
reaction.

Sadness placed her new feminine hand on the button and pushed down. "I
can't wait any longer," Christine whispered to him.

"It will be soon," Alex reassured her.

"We've been patient long enough. Those clowns at the agency better hurry
up!" Anger said.

"That adoption will never go through," Sadness said and then walked off.
As she did, her clothes and body morphed back to before.

"Forget that guy! It's going to happen," Joy said optimistically.

Alex and Christine rejoined the rest of the family with a sense of hope
for the future.



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