Constant visions of the rest of my life assaulted me whenever I wasn’t occupied with work. A never-ending cycle of commanding Debbie to do something at Mr. Scary’s behest, receiving an anonymous cell phone from a courier that would ring an hour later, and reporting on the progress of my experiment. Then I would receive my newest directive and the cycle would be repeated ad infinitum. It was still preferable to the alternative, but that alternative was beginning to gain ground in my mind. I actually contemplated dual suicide during one particularly melancholy solitary moment, reasoning that at least we would no longer be beholden to—whoever they were.
The following evening, Debbie called. “My last midterm is on Thursday, Ray. Wanna celebrate this weekend? I’m free. No data entry, no evil boss from hell, and no studying!” Hearing her sound so happy made me feel almost human again, even if I had turned her into an embodiment of my fantasies. She was happy to be with me; and it wasn’t entirely due to my tampering with her mind. I told her to pack her bags for a weekend in Seattle—and take off work the following Monday. She sighed, “No can do, Ray. My boss is just waiting to nail me for something—and I know that he won’t approve the vacation time. He’s going to say something like, ‘I should have asked for it sooner, because he can’t approve time off on such short notice.’ He wouldn’t say that to anybody else, just me. It’s because I’m fat.” She was winding up for a big venting rant, but I used the magic words to calm her down, and to improve her mental focus and concentration as I had done the previous weekend.
I put her in the best frame of mind for studying and doing well on her midterms but I also added something extra. “Debbie, when you have a viable choice between walking and some other form of transportation, you will choose to walk. You will not walk ridiculous distances, and you will not become so consumed with walking that people will talk. You want to do this to add some extra exercise to your normal day.” I hoped that would help her to feel better about herself; Debbie wasn’t that fat—she had a little bit of a belly, but for the most part, she was just a big girl.
Debbie called me the next day and said that she had tried to get Friday and Monday off anyway, and her boss’ reaction was as predicted. Frighteningly so, as she reported, almost to the word. So I cancelled those plans and set up a weekend in Chicago instead.
We met at the airport after work. “I can’t believe how well I did on my midterms!” she enthused. “Everything seemed so much clearer… I really understood it all and I could, like, explain everything! I haven’t done this well since grade school!” I gave her a kiss and made a remark that being with me must have made her smarter. She gave me a funny look, and said, “Y’know… maybe you’re right. Maybe I can concentrate better now that I have a boyfriend.” She hesitated. “You… are my boyfriend, aren’t you?”
“That’s a silly question,” I giggled. “Of course. About the only thing we haven’t done is move in together, but I don’t think that either one of us is ready for that.”
“No,” she agreed. “But we could exchange keys. If it wasn’t for school, I’d be over at your place a lot.”
Now it was my turn to look at her, insecure to the last. Well, I could do something about that, too. “Sure. When we get back, I’ll give you mine if you give me yours. You can come over anytime—even when I’m not home.” That seemed to quiet her fears and Debbie happily snuggled against me for the trip, calm, happy and at peace. Maybe I hadn’t done such a bad thing after all.
Debbie couldn’t help but gasp in shocked pleasure when we got to our room at the Fairmount, high above Chicago, overlooking the lake. We went to Lawry’s for prime rib, and I promised to take her shopping on the Magnificent Mile on Saturday. I got a very good, non-sexual feeling each time Debbie would look at me with complete adoration. I had managed to sweep her off her feet—without using the control I had.
Of course, later that night, her alterations were apparent as we enjoyed cigars and dancing at a particularly smoky blues bar. I thought that we were just casually talking about something we’d seen at the restaurant when Debbie chose to very slowly french-inhale a drag from her cigar. Giving me a sideways glance as an explicit invitation to watch, she turned her head to the side and leisurely exhaled. I had definitely underestimated the degree to which she would incorporate my commands, as beads of sweat broke out on my forehead, and something else threatened to break out underneath the table. Debbie gently put her free hand on mine, leaned forward, and said, “I want to fuck you. Now.” We left the club in a hurry.
Debbie and I went shopping the next day. Not that it was something I particularly enjoyed, but I was happy to spend Mr. Scary’s money on something. We had a casual dinner and went out to nightclub—and wound up in the path of a bachelorette party. They were all slender, attractive twenty-somethings, vivacious, flirtatious—and drunk. Even though I politely made it clear that I was with my girlfriend, I got the sense that Debbie wasn’t too thrilled with the attention I was getting from them. She immediately started blatantly playing to my fetish. I got a little thrill, but I also got the feeling that there was something else going on here—she wasn’t charging the air with sexuality as she did it. When I finally asked her what was going on, she gave me her sad little half-smile and said, “Nothing.”
Why don’t women ever say what they’re thinking, I grumbled inwardly in frustration. “Do you want to go back to the room?” I asked as gently as I could, hoping to avoid having this become unpleasant in public. Twenty minutes later, we were back at the Fairmont. It seemed as if she had turned back into her old, insecure self. I wasn’t going spend the rest of the weekend with that Debbie. “CS. DS. LO. Obey and Become. Ten-Gamma-Ten. You will want to tell me what you are feeling, without getting angry or depressed. You will realize that Ray is your boyfriend, and no one but you can change that. You will be confident about yourself, and your attractiveness to Ray.” I thought for a moment. “Your confidence comes from your realization that, although you both have fun with it, Ray’s interest in you is not solely based on his fetish. You understand that Ray thinks that you are sweet, smart, and funny, and a good person to be with. No other woman will be able to take your place with him. Zero-close-zero.”
Debbie blinked, looked at me, and, as if no time had passed, she said, “Ray… I think I need to explain… about tonight… at the bar.” I sat in the chair across from her and regarded her with interest. “It wasn’t quite nothing,” she began. “It was about those girls flirting with you.” She sighed and explained how the experience had brought back bad memories of her days at the sorority. Two or three of her so-called sisters had taken every chance to flirt with any guy who showed any interest in her, and usually wound up stealing them. “I… guess I’m not used to having a boyfriend who isn’t looking for something better, so I kinda expected you to… I dunno.” I shrugged and told her that she didn’t have to worry about that with me. She smiled, warming. “I know you don’t think I’m fat and ugly, and that’s one of the things I love about you. I know I don’t have to worry. It’s just that sometimes… I remember the way things used to be.” Her face was bright again. Those special words were so handy.
Her moments of depression over, she asked for an ashtray, looked at me, and the right vibe suddenly filled the room as she reached into her purse, removed her Mores—and a pack of Black and Mild cigars. I looked at her with surprise. “So,” she throatily asked, “I never did get an answer to my question from last week. Pick one. We’ve got all night to find out.”
Debbie’s newfound confidence in our relationship didn’t go unnoticed. As I was leaving work Wednesday, two men in suits and sunglasses herded me towards a limousine. I just hoped that I wasn’t going to be drugged again, because I had a major meeting the next day, and I needed as clear a head as possible. “Good evening, Mr. Grant,” Mr. Scary cordially said as I stepped into the limo. “How was Chicago? I’m happy that you seem to have taken my advice and spent some of the money we’ve been paying you. Don’t worry; I don’t have any new—tasks—for you right now. I just want some information today. Miss Stafford seems quite taken by you, Mr. Grant. Did you use the command in Chicago at all? Have you been able to, or even tried to change her emotional state directly?”
I told him what I had done with the command. “So you haven’t mind-controlled her into falling love with you, and you haven’t turned her into your sex slave.” He sounded disappointed, and it reflected in his face when I replied no to both counts. “So you don’t normally command her into having sex whenever you want,” he finished, sounding slightly surprised.
“She’s been—pushed—in that direction, but not commanded. I’ve more or less enhanced her—natural—desires. Once I gave her some confidence, and a pretext, well, she’s quite aggressive.”
Mr. Scary considered that for a moment before starting to analyze the situation aloud. “You’ve been taking what’s there and amplifying it, or making slight alterations that appear to be natural changes. Then the cascade effect widens the range of behaviors that are modified. And to the outside world, it all appears to be the outgrowth of small, minor, self-directed changes.” After a moment’s pause, Mr. Scary finished, “Effecting behavioral changes indirectly is a promising tack. Once again, you’ve out-thought us and given us a strategy that we had not previously considered—or conceived of. I see that subtlety is indeed one of your prime qualities.” The limo pulled to a stop near my office; we had gone in a circle. “I am impressed, Mr. Grant,” he said in dismissal, “Carry on.” The door opened, and I was a quasi-free man again.
Debbie cooked dinner at her place that weekend. “Y’know, I think I may pick up an extra shift at the other job. School seems to have gotten easier, and I was thinking I could use the extra cash if we go shopping somewhere exotic.” She grinned at me. “Like say, Paris? A girl can dream, can’t she?”
“Not a dream. Schedule your vacation and we’ll go for a week,” I off-handedly replied, my account still flush with Mr. Scary’s money.
I heard Debbie gasp in pleasure, and then she tackled me. “Oh you are gonna get so laid now,” she panted.
“Courier for Ray Grant,” my intercom said, interrupting a really nice Debbie dream I was having. I groggily looked at the clock on the TV. It was after midnight. I had fallen asleep on the sofa while waiting for Debbie to come over after her night job. I got worried—what had happened?
“Apologies for the lateness of the interruption, Mr. Grant. But would you be so kind as to conjure up a command for Miss Stafford and give it to her over the phone?” Mr. Scary paused. “And please—nothing sexual.” After begging for a few minutes so that I could regain enough consciousness to remember the magic phrase, I told him to have her call me when he figured out the pretext for it. I wasn’t feeling particularly creative.
My house line rang about ten minutes later. “Hi Ray,” Debbie said, “I hope I didn’t wake you up.” I truthfully told her that she hadn’t. “Listen, I’m working late here—they have a deadline, and they’re paying me double time. The time just kinda got away from me—I’m sorry I didn’t call earlier,” she apologized.
“That’s OK,” I replied. Then I said the magic words, told her what I wanted her to do, and closed her programming mode. “Love you, and I’ll see you—tomorrow?” Debbie happily agreed, blew me a kiss over the phone, and hung up.
About three minutes later, the cell phone rang again. “‘Mr. Scary’—hmm, I like that, Mr. Grant,” he interrupted his recital of the text I’d given Debbie to write, “‘—is a dirty, rotten scoundrel.’ Down the entire length of a page. And she noticed nothing unusual. Bravo, Mr. Grant. We are most impressed. It would seem that you have not only conscious control of Miss Stafford, but you have managed to create unconscious control of her as well. It’s all the more impressive when you consider that she is living in a giant post-hypnotic command. You deserve something for this. I’ll see if I can do something—extra—for you and Miss Stafford vis-à-vis your Paris excursion.” I asked him if that was it. “For tonight, yes.” He paused, and then added, “For the record Mr. Grant, yes, I may be a dirty, rotten scoundrel. But I am motivated only by a sense of duty to our country, and acting in her service. Good night.” I managed to hold back all of the retorts that leapt into my mind long enough for him to hang up.
A couple of weeks later, I opened the door to my apartment after work on a Wednesday, and Debbie came bouncing through the foyer to meet me with a big smile on her face. We kissed, a small, wet one in greeting. “What’s up?”
“I’ve got a long weekend coming this weekend,” she sang, her smile widening. “Apparently there was some sort of major, major, screw-up with my records… some sort of federal violation… and they owe me lots of back vacation—or lots of money, which, of course, they don’t want to pay me. So it’s vacation.” I asked her about the boss from hell. “This comes from way over his head.” She grinned, “He’s definitely not happy, but he has no choice. I get one four-day weekend for each of the next four months, and an extra ten days of vacation that I have been told I have to take. I would love to take that Seattle trip this weekend. I’ve got school well taken care of, so I don’t need the study time.”
I wondered if this was Mr. Scary’s group at work. If anybody could cook books into a major federal violation worthy of the degree of ass-kissing Debbie was getting, it was them. We were off to Seattle the following Friday morning, with my bank account reflecting a twelve-thousand dollar deposit labeled “Wood Investments,” and my suspicions confirmed—at least to my satisfaction.
There was a message waiting for me when we checked into the hotel: I needed to call into a short meeting, and the hotel offered me the use of one of their business suites with Internet. I grumbled good-naturedly—Dave must be having problems with the project. I gave Debbie a kiss, and went downstairs to the designated room. I stopped short just inside the door when I saw who was there. Someone gave me a little shove in the back, and then the door closed behind me.
“Welcome to Seattle, Mr. Grant.” Mr. Scary’s smug greeting made my head spin. “I am happy that Miss Stafford is getting to take her Seattle weekend, and yes, it was our doing. I have no doubt that you’ve already figured that out.”
“What are you doing here?” I sputtered.
“You realize that Miss Stafford’s new boss wasn’t going to allocate time for any of your trips,” he continued without answering. “Not even France. Even we don’t know what his issue is with Miss Stafford. Would you like me to find out?” I knew he’d eventually get around to answering my question, so I said nothing. He sighed, his attempt at engaging me in conversation having failed, and said, “As you have guessed, I have a task for you.” There was a note of stress in his voice, but his demeanor was the same as it had ever been.
“What is it?”
“I would like to arrange an—encounter tomorrow night. I would like you to introduce me to Miss Stafford—as a stranger.”
It took me a few moments to process that. “Doesn’t she already know you from her data entry job?”
“Yes, Mr. Grant, she does. Your assignment is to determine if you can successfully make Miss Stafford fail to recognize me. We will meet at dinner tomorrow night. If she does not recognize me, you may introduce me to your charming girlfriend as Mr. Anderson, your investment counselor.” He handed me a card. “This restaurant. It’s one of the best in Seattle, and we both enjoy seafood.”
“I don’t know if it will work. I’ve never tried anything like that. I can make her do things, but I don’t know if I can… wipe out memories like that. And if I’m successful… what happens when she runs back into you at work? Will she remember you there, or will it create a conundrum that will break her hypnotic trance? I don’t like this at all,” I worried, posed as an argument.
“Mr. Grant, your misgivings are understandable. However, you don’t have the luxury of debating this. It is not open for discussion,” he firmly said, without raising his voice.
I kept my largest fear to myself. It wasn’t the failure scenario that scared me. If Debbie ever snapped out of it and remembered anything of what had happened to her… we were dead. I was pretty sure that hadn’t changed—but I was too scared to ask if it had. Mr. Scary asked what time we would be arriving for dinner, and I told him seven or seven-thirty before walking out of the meeting room with a heavy heart.
“Problem with work?” Debbie greeted me as I returned to the room. I glumly nodded, not wanting to say anything. “That bad, huh?” she whispered. “Do you need to go back? We can turn around if it’s serious. The tickets are flexible—I checked.”
Her selflessness was endearing, but that only made me feel worse about what I going to do to her. I put Debbie into her programming mode, and had her recall her boss from her second job. “Tomorrow night, you will see a man who looks, sounds, and acts very much like the man you have fixed in your mind’s eye. He is not the same man. No matter what you may think, the man you will see is not who you think it is. You will react and act as you normally would upon meeting someone for the first time.” An hour later, I did the same thing. I was so nervous that, by the time we left for dinner, I had given Debbie the same instructions seven times.
I furtively looked around the restaurant every chance I got. Debbie was too thrilled with the view of Puget Sound and the class of the restaurant to notice my mood. She happily babbled about what we had done earlier today, and what we had planned for tomorrow. I finally heard Mr. Scary’s voice shortly after we’d ordered dinner. “Mr. Grant? Is that you?” I wanted to watch Debbie’s reaction, but had to hold up my end of the charade first.
When I stood, I almost failed to recognize him without his sunglasses. He was also with an incredibly beautiful blonde woman, old enough to be his wife, but… wow. He extended his hand. “Joe Anderson. From Wood Investments? I’m your account representative.” I shook myself from my supersonic thoughts and returned his greeting. The blonde woman’s presence helped to make it seem—more normal. “This is my wife, Marilyn,” he said, introducing her. He was a great actor, because at that moment, I had no doubts that she was his wife. “You should have called and let me know that you were coming!”
“It was a spur-of-the-moment trip,” I said, unconsciously falling into my role. “Mr. Anderson; Marilyn, I’d like you to meet my girlfriend, Debbie. She’s never been to Seattle, so I thought I’d take advantage of my—investments and bring her for a long weekend.” Debbie stood and shook the blonde’s hand, and then I held my breath as she turned to Mr. Scary.
“It’s nice to meet you, Mr. Anderson. I didn’t know that Ray had friends in Seattle,” she smiled. I don’t. “How do you know Ray exactly?” I softly exhaled, more relieved than anything else.
“His godfather left him a trust in his will and my company handled his accounts, so we’ve continued doing so for all the trustees. I think that Mr. Grant will agree that we’ve done well for him fiscally, even though we don’t see eye-to-eye on investment strategies,” he wryly said. Debbie asked if they would join us. “Thank you for the offer, but Marilyn and I were just leaving. We have to get home before our teenagers have half the high school over to the house. It’s been a pleasure, and here’s hoping for continued success with your investments. Please allow me to pick up the tab for a bottle of champagne for the two of you.”
After they left us, Debbie enthused about how nice he and his wife seemed. She continued to show absolutely no sign of recognition that “Mr. Anderson” bore any resemblance to anyone at her second job, not even when I hinted that he reminded me of someone I knew back home. Debbie smiled and said that it must have been my imagination.
I was quiet during the cab ride back to the hotel, considering everything that had happened during this trip. It looked like the experiment was a success. Not only could I open Debbie’s mind and make her do things later, but I could apparently selectively erase (or hide, I wasn’t sure what was more accurate,) certain memories of hers. I had yet to find a limit as to how far my control over her extended. So far, I’d altered her perception of sexuality, her body memory, and even the way that nervous impulses were translated by her brain. I’d made her take up and enjoy an unhealthy habit, and even managed to get her to go back to a job that she was ready to leave. Mr. Scary was still relying on me to command her, and that could only mean one thing: I was still the only person who could put Debbie in her alternate state, where she was a mindless drone waiting to receive thoughts and actions to execute. I had created the perfect woman, self-reliant, yet completely pliant and submissive at the turn of a phrase. She was completely malleable for me—and no one else.
My musings had caused my cock to inflate—mind-control was still arousing, despite my conscience’s frustrated peeping. It didn’t take long for Debbie to notice, either. “Thinking of me, huh?” she teased as the taxi pulled up to the hotel. “Well, I’ve been thinking of you, too,” she purred.