Controlled Trials

It hurt.

That wasn’t all that surprising, given the nature of the experiment/treatment/whatever, and it didn’t hurt too bad, and she did derive her own private enjoyment from it, weird though that was, but that didn’t mean it was pleasant.

Necessary, yes, given that she’d already signed up and was going to get paid.

Pleasant, no, except, again, in an idiosyncratically pervy way that she wasn’t going to admit, at all, ever, at least not to any of the other patients/subjects or to the doctors.

So Tera lay on her bed, on her side, trying to read a magazine, trying not to put more pressure on her bladder than necessary, trying not to notice the visible bulge starting underneath her teats and sticking out a bit northward, trying not to spread her legs, claw at her own urethra, tear out the catheter plugging it up, and spray yellow all over her bed and blankets and watch it drip slowly onto the immaculately cleaned tiled floor for a couple minutes, smiling ear to pinned-back ear in orgasmic relief until a nurse came in and took her off to surgery because it’s probably a bad idea to leave a half-inflated balloon inside one’s internal organs unless one really knows what one is doing.

So she didn’t do that.

Tera had signed up when she saw a flyer in a little coffee place she went to, some sort of doctoral thesis experimental something—-she just kinda skimmed over it and jumped to the bold text that read “1200 bits” and her eyes really lit up.

So she called them up, and went in, and pretended to listen when they explained what it was they were doing—some colt in soda-bottle glasses—the doctoral candidate, she vaguely remembered—did all the explaining; an older stallion, watching the colt, jotted notes in a small green notebook on occasion. Tera, for her part, nodded every once in a while, but really only remembered what would be relevant to her day-to-day:

Turns out, however, that “doing whatever so long as you stay on hospital grounds” isn’t a very wide array of options: none of the board and card games they had in the rec room suited her fancy, not to mention she’d have to play it with other ponies and nopony else looked interesting the one time she went; the magazine collection they had was surprisingly sparse for a hospital (she got lucky with the one she had, and she was boring of it quickly)—though she hadn’t gone to the (also small) library proper, so hope yet remained on that front; wandering the hospital grounds was about as exciting as walking down any other hallway lined with dozens of evenly-spaced identical doors marked with meaningless numbers.

That said, there was a nice little courtyard on the first floor, if the little map in her nightstand was any indication, and her room was getting a little—not stuffy per se, the ventilation was too good for that, but definitely stale or at least painfully boring. And she wasn’t connected to any of the other machines she two-thirds understood the functions of, so nothing stopped her from throwing off her bedsheet, jumping/falling out of bed, involuntarily grabbing her crotch with a foreleg for a second, standing up, tossing on a gown to hide her distension a little bit, and walking, slowly, out the door.

Walking through a hospital hallway at a leisurely pace is a snooze on the best of days, though her legs appreciated the stretch and she appreciated the distraction from the ache of her bladder’s ever-stretching girth, so she was in no hurry to get there. That said, she did, and took in the half-dozen or so well-tended trees, somewhat more flowers, and undulating cloudy sky, just thin enough to see where the sun was, then walked to a park bench, carefully jumped up and sat down upon it (putting the pressure in a slightly more painful but considerably more pleasurable location), unbuttoned her gown, looked up to the sky, closed her eyes, and relaxed.

A gardener showed up at some point, she could hear… them, in the singular, they didn’t speak while working, so all she could hear were the hoofsteps of one pony and the occasional snip, snip of pruning shears, echoing softly against the stone tiles on the ground and the glass on the walls, along with the occasional chirping bird, as she took off her gown and lay back on the bench, belly up against the diluted sunlight, her thighs and abs twitching slightly as they strained to relax, and started to drift off.

She woke up again a few minutes later—the sun had rudely pierced through a break in the clouds—and before opening her eyes she noticed that the gardener, whoever they were, had just about finished, sounded like. She got up slowly, working herself from lying down into more of a “sitting” position, though one foreleg rested over the back of the bench and the other slowly massaged her “water balloon”, and she opened her eyes.

She—the gardener was a she, a late-middle-aged mare, a unicorn—was putting the shears into the back of a little cart. She seemed amiable enough.

Tera said hi.

“Hi,” the gardener replied. “Congratulations, by the way.” She smiled.

“What are you—” Tera looked down, following the gardener’s line of sight, toward her own belly. “Oh,” she giggled, sheepishly covering herself, “that, no, thanks, but I’m not—”

She felt, though didn’t see, something wiggle.


She definitely wasn’t expecting that.

She trotted awkwardly down one of an infinite maze of hallways—she would have galloped, and tried, too, for half a second, before the pain inhibited any further progress on that front—took an elevator, bounce-trotted some more down the hall, went into her room, and started rifling through papers until she found the flyer they had given her and skimmed through it.

When she was finished, she felt a bit better, though not that much. The gist was, there was this kind of nematode—basically a worm, but smaller—that had been discovered to be useful in treating some kinds of digestive disorders, but the problem was that it fed on uric acid during its larval stage, which lasted about eighteen hours.

The normal life cycle of the nematode in question was that adults would swim up a host’s urethra to the bladder, lay eggs in the mucus in its walls, then get flushed while the eggs hatched and the larvae grew into adults and got flushed themselves.

If a nematode got swallowed, it would instead live in the host’s small intestine for a week or so, living off nutrients therein, expelling waste products that turned out to be pretty good probiotics, among other handy properties, which is what got research attention in the first place. However, there were some problems:

  1. The adults would not stay in the intestine for more than nine days, and would usually leave around day seven,
  2. the adults wouldn’t lay eggs in the intestine, period,
  3. the adults would stay dormant in little cysts and just pass through for some reason if the host’s species was different from that where it was hatched, and
  4. eggs and larvae would just die in the stomach.

So the researchers would need a lot of adult nematodes, hatched in ponies, that they could use for trials. This, presumably, was why they couldn’t just relieve themselves on their own time: the larvae needed precise incubation conditions to grow (warmth, darkness) and the adults were the point of the study and so couldn’t afford to be literally flushed away.

Which explained the wiggling: there were adults in her bladder now, which, she realized, would be laying eggs of their own pretty soon, if they weren’t already.

No wonder they were offering 1200 bits.

She hit the cafeteria that evening, ate fourths (which, hey, no dietary restrictions and a buttload of money coming in in a day and a half, why the buck not), took a shower, put the detachable showerhead somewhere it probably didn’t belong for a couple minutes, filled herself up, let about 90% of the water back out (because she knew she had to answer for it all, as her bladder constantly reminded her), washed both herself and the showerhead thoroughly, then hobbled off to bed early, her gut noticeably (though not absurdly) sticking out, a smaller though still substantial bulb attached closer to her nethers.

A friend of hers dropped by around nine—“I dropped by to say hi, saw you were gone, read the note you left on the counter and figured you’d be bored. I always am when I come here. Anyway, here’s your book; thought you’d want it”—and dropped off a favorite graphic novel of hers, which she read for an hour or so after he left. Eventually, however, she got tired, so she flicked off the light, then reached around her gut and massaged her bladder a bit, both regretting and enjoying the decision immediately. “You’re welcome,” she said softly, smiling, before lying down and drifting off to pleasant dreams of waterfalls and seas.

When she woke up the next morning, she needed to go to the bathroom both ways—unsurprising given her feast the night before—and while she obviously couldn’t do one, she went ahead with the other, washed her hooves, and went about her business of doing nothing except wait until seven that evening, when she could declare victory and relieve herself.

Over the course of the night, though, there must have been another round of laying, hatching and maturation, because along with the extra stretching from her revelry the night before, she could feel an almost constant, invisible, disconcerting yet strangely titillating squirming. She kept to her room, reading and rereading the graphic novel she had, for most of the day, because as socially inept as she could sometimes be, she wasn’t quite stupid enough not to know that somepony walking around in slow motion, occasionally rubbing their distended pelvic region with a combination grunt of pain and moan of pleasure, was not considered socially acceptable in most circumstances.

Eventually, however, she tired of rereading her comic upside down to try to find nonexistent hidden secrets within the margins and between the panels in a vain attempt to distract herself, so she hobbled out of her room one last time to finally visit the library: hopefully the periodicals section would have a few back issues of Shonen Hurdle she could flip through, which would hopefully tide her over—poor choice of words, keep her occupied until the hour she could pee and get paid and go home.

Not even bothering with anything like a gown, she walked, slowly, to the elevator, clamping her lower lip as hard as she could without cutting it, stayed standing in the elevator, got out, navigated a couple turns, and got to the small library help desk.

The stallion—colt, rather—at the desk looked to be a teenage volunteer, flipping through a magazine of his own, waiting for somepony to walk up and actually ask for something. The library had, for obvious safety reasons, been purged of magic books, but pretty much any other topic was up for grabs. The problem was, the library didn’t have much space to work with, so it was usually the twenty most popular topics du jour and then whatever else they hadn’t purged yet, so it was nice to browse, but if you were looking for something specific you were often out of luck.

Tera tried anyway. “Hi,” she said, slowly, calmly, carefully, waiting for the volunteer to look over, which he did, setting down his paper and sliding it to the side. “Do you have any—”


—hnnnnnnnNNNNNGGGGG—GAah, haah, huhh, sorry about that, complications.”

“It happens.”

“Anyhow, do you have any back issues of Sho—


Tera fell back on her rump and put both forehooves over her crotch, mouthing various and sundry cuss words for about ten seconds.

…hoooookay, hopefully that should be done, back issues of Shonen—hnnNK—Hurdle, I’m so sorry.”

“It happens.” He disappeared behind the desk for a second, except for his wingtips, because the librarian had a weird nervous tic that would make his wings rise involuntarily whenever he was focused on something.

His head popped up, looked left and right for a second, flushed red for a second as he lowered his wings again.

Tera smiled. “It happens,” she would have said, but that would have required loosening her death grip on her lower lip, which she wasn’t going to do at all until she got back to her room.

“Pardon. Yes, we do, in fact; would you like me to show you where it is?”

Tera nodded enthusiastically, got up slowly, followed him. Got two back issues (yay!), put them in a handy dandy reusable saddle-book-bag, returned to her room, returned to reading.

Made pained/aroused noises in relative peace.

Seven finally rolled around. The doctoral student walked in, talking to a nurse. “How many drains has she done?”



He saw Tera’s head peeking over an abdomen stretched over a bladder the size of a melon.

He stared for a moment, unable to process.


Tera smiled weakly and gingerly tapped the bulge, wincing slightly. “You want it, you can have it, just get it out of me please.”

The doctoral candidate smiled blankly in response, then turned to the nurse: “Well, let’s get on with it then.”

A modified IV bag was attached to the catheter, a valve was opened with a small wrench, and Tera moaned in sweet, orgasmic relief—quietly, she hoped in vain—as three days’ worth of liquid flowed out of her and into the container, along with the nematodes, little noodles she could feel sliding through her urethra on the way out. By the time they finished, Tera was both considerably more flat and considerably more exhausted, and both the nurse and our poor doctoral candidate were more than considerably redder in the face.

Tera broke the silence. “So, those are the, uh, nematodes?”

The doctoral candidate looked at the bag. About a hundred or so of the little things, most maybe a quarter inch long, some as long as three inches, swam around in a gallon or so of warm off-yellow liquid.

The doc-to-be was dumbfounded for a second. “Why—why, that’s more than double the rest of the subjects’ takes combined! Well, so far, but there’s only two left and—”

He turned to Tera. “—and there’s still eggs and larvae in you, so we’ll need to flush your bladder with some saline before you can leave.”


Tera looked at the doctoral candidate, a little embarrassed.

“…actually, I’ve gotten used to them, and I don’t remember reading any negative consequences in the brochure, so…

“can I keep ‘em?”