Steven slowly woke to the usual pains of hunger as he forced himself to crawl out of his bed and get dressed before heading down to the living room. Removing his pajamas, he groggily pulled on his favorite pair of jeans and shirt while wiping the sleep from his eyes. His father had always told him that these clothes made him look rather elegant while Steven found them rather comfortable. Leaving his room, he walked down stairs to greet the rest of his family who were having their breakfast.
"Morning, Steve! How are you? Have a good sleep?" Asked Megan. She was the eldest of the children and was exceedingly responsible, even for a 24 year old. Studying at the University she also was kind of the maid of the house. This was until she could find a place of her own that she could afford.
"Yeah, I'm fine, just a little tired. Hey, could you fix me something to eat, I'm starving?" Steven dropped himself onto the closest seat as his sister got up from hers.
"Of course, little bro. you just sit there and continue looking like you're dying." Steven laugh with his eyes half open.
Megan was similar to a kind mother and really became like one when hers and Steven's mother died. His mother was the only sibling that Steven was fully related to but she had died when they were very young. Since then their father, Scott, had remarried and his family had become theirs. While Stevens side of the family was kind and caring the other half, those related to his stepmother, were slightly more shady.
First there was Linda, the stepmother in question, who was a woman of astonishing, natural beauty who possessed a cold and methodical mind. She loved to feel superior to others, to rule others, and relished in possessing authority despite her diminutive stature of 5'3". It was this cold heartedness that made her marry a wealthy businessman even though she had no actual feeling for him and although this fact disgusted Steven it was Linda's daughter who he couldn't stand.
Jade, Linda's 17 year old daughter, had every asset a person could dream of whether it was her 6' tall frame, her uncanny intelligence or her amazing body. She was the one considered to have the best future out of the entire family with Linda paying for all her studies at Harvard (With Scott's money of course). Maybe it was because of her mother's viciously cold persona but Jade had a rather strong admiration for the woman and hated everyone else in the family whether it be because of jealousy or arrogance. She loathed Scott because his intellect rivaled her own and she simply saw the rest of the family as inferior beings for the exact opposite reason.
Jake was Steven's younger Stepbrother and was born 1 year after Scott and Linda got together. He was roughly 13 years old and would always look up to Steven as a big brither he wanted to be like someday. Steven was also the person who would protect him from Jade brutality.
The last child was Clara, the little 12 year old boss. She was a major brat who didn't understand the meaning of the word "no" and would often do whatever she wanted and always got away with it. Although she was sweet most of the time even Steven couldn't do discipline whithout the fear of Linda's fury.
All five children were in the living room waking up in their own way. Clara and Jake were doing their usual wrestling match for the T.V remote while shouting at the top of their lungs, which had become a sort of morning ritual for them. Jade was laying on the sofa reading a book with her feet on a chair rubbing against Steven's jacket. Megan and Steven, however, were having a more important conversation as they had their morning breakfast: their fathers shrinking disease.
This new disease that had suddenly appeared years ago and had the horrifying ability to shrink their victims until they slowly became microbes. No cure nor prevention had been discovered and all the victims suffered from the same fate. However, this isn't to say that no information had been gleamed through the years of research of the virus. Recent studies suggested that it might actually be genetic and that males whose relatives had succumbed to it may face a higher chance of contracting it themselves. This notion thoroughly disturbed Steven as he couldn't imagine what his life would be like if he ever got the illness. Although everyone said that men were more likely to get it then women, Steven simply brushed these off as old wives tales. However, the thing that always got on his mind was that his own mother had died due to the virus and now his father had it too and whenever he was alone his mind would always wander on these facts.
The state, unable to find a cure or prevention, had established certain laws for the "shrinkers" in order to protect them from the ever expanding world. All those who were infected with the illness had to be registered and submit themselves to a guardian (Also known as an owner) who would be responsible for looking after the shrinker as they got smaller. This person was often loved ones but if someone couldn't find a guardian they were forced to submit to the government and placed in "shrinker facilities". These were government run programs were marketed as free government programs designed to help shrinkers as they shrunk but were in reality prisons where the virus infected were treated like playtoys and used for experiments in combating the disease. The owner of the shrinker basically owned everyone of their human rights (As an unspoken rule) and would gain everything the shrinker owned when they eventually ... disappeared. In Steven's home the carer was Linda who owned his father Scott which Steven viciously disputed. Declaring that he should be the guardian, the government was quick to take Linda's side as she was the spouse and rightful owner of said shrinker.
Now the recipient of huge sums of money, Linda was exceedingly happy as she was not only the ruler of the household but owner of a personal slave whom she didn't hesitate to treat harshly. Because of this, Steven witnessed his own fathers constant decline in height, charisma and pride until he was the size of a 4 year old whom even Clara treated as inhuman. Steven couldn't bear seeing his father, a once tall and imposing man, become less and less until it got to the point that he would lower his eyes when speaking to a 12 year old girl who would simply pout everytime he spoke ... What happened to him?
And then there was Jade who found almost inhuman pleasure from humiliating him further as if it was her mission in life. No doubt she did this as revenge for the way he stood up to her when he was normal height. He wouldn't take any of her arrogant, condescending tone and now he was paying for it. Steven felt sick when he remembered how Jade would pick up his father by his armpits and cradle him like a small baby against her voluminous breasts. She knew that, along with all negative emotions, humiliation was a severe catalyst for speeding up the shrinking virus. "What a bitch" Steven thought to himself.
At that moment the front door opened showing Linda had come back with tons of shopping bags in each hand, no doubt paid with her former husbands credit card, followed by said husband at her heels, who didn't even reach her knees anymore.
"Hey, everyone" she announced as she was bombarded by the two youngest, obviously wondering what was in the bags.
Jade, however, quickly put her book down and jumped off the couch, casually making her way over to Scott who had no time to react before he was lifted into the air and kissed asif he was a baby. This picture was intensified as Jade began to talk to Scott in a baby voice. Steven's knuckles were white as he watch the entire scene with overwhelming anger. A rage that was slowly dragging him into madness as he felt an unbearable desire to repress this bitch of a half sister. She had pushed it long enough and he refused to let her continue treating his own father this way. He knew that everything she did was for the sole purpose of shrinking Scott further just so that she could enact her petty revenge. He was about to get up and scream this at her when the tragedy happened. Steven's vision suddenly blurred as his mind became more and more dizzy for a few seconds. He felt as if he was about to fall over when Megan grabbed him by the arms and helped him stand.
"You alright?" She asked, looking over his face for signs of illness
"Yeah, I'm alright ... Sorry" He answered, moving away from her and standing on his feet again.
She continued to stare at him, her eyes filled with fear which Steven didn't really understand until he stood at full height and looked her in the eyes, surprised at how tall she was. Megan was a cute, 5'4" Brunette who didn't know how to be respected in the house. However, she was positively intimidating for a tall, 6'2" man now that she was taller than before.