October 24th, 2011
I sat in bed and contemplated horror.
I had been on a Robert E. Howard kick of late, and, having finished most of his Conan stories and novels, I was now perusing his horror short stories, most of which had been originally published in Weird Tales Magazine in the late 1920’s. In my opinion, he far surpassed both Merritt and Lovecraft in sheer readability and content. Most of his stories and novels, long out of copyright, were available free online in just about any e-reader format you could want. But now, I wondered if I could advance his writing through blogs or re-released books.
I sighed. This was yet another preoccupation on my part. I was filthy rich and bored … both maladies relatively new in my life. I was also lonely. My wife had gone to one of her parties, leaving me in the sole company of Mr. Howard … not bad company, I’ll admit, but as good as he might be, he can’t hold a candle to Elaine.
Now, I realize that you, the reader, did not come to this website in search of either literary criticism or to hear about a guy who was lonely for his wife’s companionship. You came here for a tale of “erotic mind control”… which I promise to deliver. However, I must insist that you bear with me, at least for a few more paragraphs, while I dedicate these opening passages to necessary “back-story” explanation. Without it, the reasons why I was alone (and lonely) that night are sorely wanting, not to mention the events and people that shaped the actions that followed.
I learned shorthand on my own, back in high school. I keep a small journal … in shorthand … for the sake of exactness and historical accuracy. Let’s face it; if it isn’t written down, it eventually ceases to exist. That’s why I can be accurate about the dates in this story. It doesn’t take a journal to remember the most important date, though. Friday, March 11th, 2011. That date might not mean anything to you … but it will live forever in the memories of about two percent of the world’s population. I had just finished my third year of grad school, and with the distinct possibility that the United States would soon approve its first nuclear power generating plant since 1978, a team of experts (including a hand-picked contingent of grad students) was making the rounds of the largest generating plants in the world. That’s why I was at the Daiichi (Number One) reactor in Fukushima on that fateful date. You remember it now, don’t you?
That day, I had the distinct opportunity to do something that very few individuals ever have. I was suddenly given the ability to save the life of another human being … the lives of several, in fact. Maybe I should have thought more about it … but I didn’t. I acted. Right away. Even after all that’s happened to me since, I’m sure would do so again. I do not consider myself a hero. There were lots of those … that day, and the days that followed. But I had just been in that classroom across from the reactor room, and as I left, another group of students entered. And so, I knew exactly where it was … exactly how to get there … exactly what I had to do … after the ground finally stopped shaking … after I had my bearings again. The doors had all been secured, of course … just as they were supposed to automatically secure in the event of an emergency. But, in truth, nuclear facilities are nothing like Hollywood depicts. There was some construction going on near me, and the sledgehammer just happened to be there. And a door is just a door. I got back in after about thirty seconds of moderating pummeling; and eventually, I got through the rubble, and another door, and more rubble and yet another door.
The group was a little frantic, to say the least, knowing (as experts inevitably know) that a quake of that magnitude wouldn’t end the troubles along a coastline. It took more than half an hour to dig one young lady out of some debris, and, hoisting her inert form over my shoulder, I led them out of there … back out the way I had come. There were twelve of them. A few minutes after regaining our freedom, I had the horrible experience of watching one of them drown in the second half of the disaster. Another one eventually died from radiation exposure. Still, I feel pretty good that so many are still around … including the young lady I carried. We’ve stayed in touch. She later sent me a letter, and her little two-year-old daughter drew me a picture that I still have to this day.
It would have ended much differently for me if that had been ALL I did on that day. But the tsunami had overflowed the reactor building itself, including the generators that provided coolant to the reactors themselves. I joined a team that immediately went back in and tried to get them running again. Not that it did any good … at least at that point. Ah well … the best laid plans.
Now, your entire concept of nuclear radiation may be overshadowed by Hollywood definitions, as well. Let me just set the record straight. Radiation does NOT lead to superhuman mutations, nor (on the other end of the spectrum) is it always fatal. But radiation and live tissue do not, as a rule, mix well, whether it be through exposure from the sun or some open gamma source (though in the hands of a radiological oncologist, for example, it can obviously be bent to do our will). Normally, however, when radiation meets humans, it heats and destroys. That’s all. Period.
The bad luck of being in the wrong place at the wrong time was followed by three incidences of incredibly GOOD luck … all of which were family related. There is no tissue donor better than a sibling … and of all the types of siblings, an identical twin is absolutely perfect. I am fortunate enough to have one. When Elaine was finally able to get there, a week after the quake and tsunami, she was carrying my first blood marrow transfusion from Tod. By that time, I was sick … REALLY sick, and Elaine, my wife of one year, was my best luck by far. She never left my side … there in Japan, a month later when I made the trip back to L.A., and through all the convalescence after that.
The third stroke of luck was my father, a soft spoken, understated, savagely ingenious lawyer. The insurance company somehow determined that I had been exposed to radiation only after choosing to disregard my own safety by going back into the reactor area; and in so doing, I had also chosen to voluntarily terminate my policy BEFORE being injured. My medical bills were already in the high six-figures … bills that Pop was paying … even while he was quietly putting legal machinery in motion that was spectacularly choreographed. He fast-tracked a suit for actual and punitive damages, and the week before the lawsuit was to be heard, articles ran in all the Tokyo newspapers decrying the fact that “America’s Machiavellian Healthcare System” would abandon a “hero.” The State Department somehow got wind of it (I wonder how?), and a letter even came out of the White House. It was only a max-$250,000 policy from the University’s chosen insurance agency, but after they looked up dear old Pop the day before Jury selection was to begin, the company begrudgingly decided it was in their best interest to settle out-of-court for fifteen mil. Pop took no fees except the money needed to settle the hospital bills thus far.
And so, we finally find ourselves back at the beginning of our story. Elaine and I had moved into a VERY nice house in a very nice neighborhood in Pasadena. My career in nuclear research was over (hell, I wasn’t even allowed to get an X-ray for the next several years), though I certainly didn’t NEED an occupation. Elaine had quit her job as a copywriter in order to care for me … and she had more or less decided she would never go back to work, either. The unspoken truth was always with us … I might not be around for very long. The immune system problems were finally over (or at least “in remission”) thanks to Tod’s bone marrow. My hair had grown back, and there had not been any signs of cancer … yet. But we had decided to live life to the fullest. I tried hobbies … lots of them. Book collecting, literary blogs (hence my current fascination with Mr. Howard), clock repair, sketching … even fly tying. We planned to start travelling soon.
Elaine had turned to charity work, fund raising, book clubs, garden clubs … and most recently, “theme” parties. You know … cookware parties, fashion wear parties, lingerie parties … that sort of thing. The previous week, she had somehow been invited to a “sex toy” party, which, I must say, turned into quite an interesting diversion after she brought her purchases home. I wasn’t sure what this current “party” was, but she’d been gone a long time now. I was just about to give in to my impatience and call her cell phone when I heard the car in the driveway.
“Hi, Honey!” She swept into the room, lighting it up with her presence. “You’re looking great!” (She, to her benefit, had never started a conversation with “How do you feel?”) She practically ran to the bed and kissed me, then just as quickly pulled away before I could capture her in my arms. “Here, I got something for you. I’m going to take a quick shower before bed.”
“What’s this?” I asked, digging into a paper bag which obviously contained a book. “Where have you been, anyway? You’ve been gone for four hours!”
She stopped suddenly and looked at the alarm clock. “Really?” she asked quizzically. “I could have sworn I’d only been gone about an hour.” She shrugged, dismissing it, and continued on. “It was a book signing,” she said loudly from the bathroom. “Strangest literary event I’ve ever attended! There were only four of us there … four girls, I mean … plus the author. I bought you a copy of his book. It was kind of expensive … a hundred dollars … but it’s a signed first edition! That makes it valuable, right?” The shower started running.
I grimaced. In the vast majority of books, “first edition” actually means “only edition.” And if the author was signing for small groups, it most probably meant that he was desperate to sell any books at all. Someone had wrapped the book in gift paper and I was struggling a little to get it off. Finally, it came clear of its wrapping, and I was stunned at the title. “Using Erotic Hypnosis to Voluntarily Enslave Your Wife or Girlfriend,” by Reginald Cathwright. I stared at it, unbelieving. Elaine was in the shower, and I couldn’t very well question whether this was some kind of joke until she got through.
Now, one of my hobbies (recently acquired) was collecting books. You can always spot a bibliophile when he first picks up a volume. He checks things … the dust jacket, the binding … and then, once he finally opens it, the first place he goes is always the title page and title verso (the page after, or flip-side of the title page). This particular volume sported neither dust jacket nor cover illustration. I nodded silently at the title page, realizing something, at least. It was a “small press” book … that is, a book published by a small, private printer. Many small press books were limited editions, and this was one, too.
“Laid out in Octavo and printed entirely in Altadena Medium Serif Semi-Bold by Ralph Gray Publishing, Altadena, CA. Book # ____ of 500 Signed, Limited copies.” The number “147” had been written into the blank in ballpoint pen, and the author’s signature had been scrawled in the space below the title. The verso showed that the book was, indeed, a first (and only) printing, published earlier that same year. The volume was slender … only about a hundred pages, and printed on glossy paper. It sported numerous photographs of a woman in the process of being hypnotized, though it didn’t take a keen eye to spot that some of the images had been manipulated. Whoever the hypnotist was (out of frame), he was dangling a clear gem in front of the entranced woman … but the gemstone (or whatever it was) had been added after the fact, obscuring the actual thing she was so enthralled with. In some of the pictures, geometric lines and angles had been added, showing the reader where best to hold the trinket in relation to the woman he intended “enslaving.”
The woman in the photos was certainly attractive. She was slender of figure, had a smooth, clear complexion, dark hair and sensuous features. She wore a strapless garment in the opening pictures, and her eyes were bright and intelligent. In successive frames, her eyes dulled, her eyelids drooped and then finally closed as she slumped in her chair, asleep. Further along in the book, she was pictured without the garment, her breasts prominently featured, though her nipples were always just below the edge of the pictures, out of view. Her eyes, when open, were vacant and staring.
The shower was finally turned off, and a few minutes later, Elaine appeared in the doorway to the bathroom, naked and fresh, her brown hair slightly damp and wild. She issued a sort of giggle and ran to the bed, jumping in and burrowing under the covers, pressing her spectacular body against mine. This surprised me. When Elaine was “in the mood,” she liked to primp for me, spending time on her hair, trying to entice me with a slinky nightgown, having fun by encouraging me to seduce her. Now, she used my lower chest as her pillow, and she reached down and laid her hand on my cock, gently stroking my balls with her fingernails.
“Mmmm, I missed you tonight,” she murmured. She snuggled even closer to me, and then sighed deeply. “Oh, wow,” she continued, barely above a whisper. “Suddenly, I’m really sleepy.”
My cock was responding to her gentle stroking with rigid resolution, if you’ll pardon the alliteration, but now her sensuous exploitation began slowing even more. “Hey,” I told her. “You’re not going to go to sleep and leave me like this, are you?”
“It’s been a long evening,” she muttered groggily. “I’m awfully tired. Can we wait ‘til morning?”
“And just what DID you do this evening?” I asked in what I hoped sounded like mock indignation.
“I was hypnotized,” she answered bluntly.
“Oh WERE you, now?”
“Mmm-hmm,” she nodded her head against my chest. “Cathy … the girl who asked us there tonight … she volunteered to be the ‘subject’ and let Reggie hypnotize her. But Reggie told all of us that lots of times, girls in the audience would go into trance, too, and that we shouldn’t feel bad if we felt ourselves going under. So Cathy just sat there, looking at this diamond-looking thingy that Reggie was dangling in front of her, but the way they had the chairs arranged, all of us could see it, too. And it was really … shiny. Really … really … um … shiny.” She sighed again. “Really ….”
Her hand had long since stopped its movement, and it lay heavy on my balls, my cock jutting at gallant attention between the base of her thumb and index finger. Her breathing was deep and steady in sleep, and she stayed like that for a long two or three minutes; then her body jerked … a falling sensation … only to recover as she took her hand away from my most sensitive parts and she threw her arm across my chest, her right leg coming up and resting on my upper thighs as she hugged my whole body to herself. She moaned slightly, sighed once again, and then her breathing returned to the steady rhythm of slumber.
Well THIS was another fine mess! What the hell was I supposed to do now? I didn’t want to disturb her, and I hadn’t been inclined toward masturbation recently, anyway … not since we’d decided to try to have a baby. Elaine had shown no reticence toward sex at all in the past few months. But her full breasts pressing into my side, her thigh pushing insistently against my full balls … not to mention the prurient topic of the book I was holding in my hands … left me yearning for far more than a peaceful night’s sleep. With a shaky exhalation, I abandoned all hope of an immediate erotic encounter and I turned my attention instead to the thin volume she had presented me.
The first time I perused it, after examining the title information, I had simply flipped through the thing, taking in the photographs. Now, I went to the first page … the introduction … and I was shocked at what I found. The author was presenting the book as a first-person, one-on-one sort of narration meant specifically for the volume’s new owner. He tended to be a bit verbose, so please allow me to paraphrase a bit.
It seems that the author and his lovely wife (the hypnotic and photogenic subject presented in the book) felt that they had a “gift” for spotting a woman with profoundly ingrained submissive tendencies … a woman who would be susceptible to hypnotic suggestion, and in fact, a woman who actually yearned for the loss of emotional control that was possible only through an especially deep trance state. Since I, the reader, was now holding one of these signed, numbered books, my wife (or girlfriend) was considered to have had the privilege of being deemed such a woman by the author and his spouse. The introduction went on to explain that this hypothesis was confirmed during an intimate get-together with these two, along with one or two other lucky ladies who had been deemed to possess the same proclivities.
During this little gathering, Mrs. Author (i.e., Mrs. Cathwright, unless a pseudonym was in play), agreed to volunteer to be the hypnotist’s subject for the evening, but the seating chart was designed so that each of the ladies present would have a clear view of the hypnosis-inducing trinket used to instill this loss of consciousness. Once again, the fact that I was holding this book was proof that my wife (or girlfriend) did, indeed, succumb to the deepest levels of hypnotic surrender. (Unwritten logic, of course, implied that the other ladies present did an equal job of “succumbing,” since a conscious member of the group would undoubtedly have raised bloody hell.)
I was to be assured, the introduction went on, that nothing “physical” had happened to my wife (or girlfriend) while she was taken into the deepest depths of her subconscious. I could be equally confident that nothing was implanted in her mind in the way of “triggers” that would alter her perceptions or cause her to suddenly reenter such a trance. In an effort to persuade me that hypnotic control was real, and that her suggestibility could permanently “enhance” our relationship, one simple, innocent change had been accomplished while she was “under;” one which would manifest itself in the near future.
The goal of this exercise was to convince me, the lucky spouse (or lover), that hypnotic control of this special woman was not only possible, but preferable. She loved this loss of power … and what red-blooded dominant individual would not jump at the chance to provide all the control she so desperately craved by making her a personal sex slave?
Now, it just so happened that the gem which was used to place her in her hypnotic nirvana was specially cut … a unique design, specific only to her (and presumably, at least, the two other women who had been chosen for tonight’s “book signing”). If I wanted to give my wife (or girlfriend) the special control she yearned for, I could call Mr. Cathwright at the phone number provided at the end of the introduction, make an appointment, and arrange to buy an exact duplicate of this specially-designed gemstone. While my wife (or girlfriend) was in her trance, she had divulged a few little facts to her hypnotist … one of which was an approximation of her spouse’s (or lover’s) net worth. Based on that information, the price for this invaluable device might vary from person to person, and my particular price would be so noted … but I would be sure to understand that it was one hell of a bargain, considering the fantasies … hers as well as mine … that were sure to be fulfilled through the possession of this artifact.
On the last page of the introduction, a phone number with a 626 area code was written in pencil in a blank specifically designed for the purpose, along with an amount in another underlined blank. That amount was twenty-five thousand dollars. The area code, of course, meant that Mr. Cathwright (or whatever his name was) lived in the northern portion of the Los Angeles metropolitan area.
The rest of the book gave step-by-step instructions on how to enslave my wife (or girlfriend) using the gem I was intended to buy. The “Introduction” imparted slightly more information than Mr. Cathwright intended to relinquish, of course. Obviously, quite a bit of “triggering” had been done during Elaine’s trance time, or else the “specific gemstone” wouldn’t have to be “specific.” I also had to believe that such specificity was, in fact, accurate, since the photos had been altered to change the object’s appearance. More to the point, since the “instructions” had been provided to the “lucky spouse/lover” beforehand in book form, I had to assume that an especially deep-set suggestion had been implanted which prohibited her from being placed into a trance by anything BUT this special trinket.
Not that that mattered a whit to me. Mr. Cathwright had clearly not figured on one very profound truth. I happened to like my wife exactly the way she was. I had no intention of trying to seize control of her … mentally or otherwise. The problem, of course, was: what been “done” to her up to this point? How had he “changed” her? What was this “enhancement” that was supposed to manifest itself? How could I protect her from this scumball? Should I threaten him? And if so, with what? Legal action seemed a little farfetched, especially if word of this got out somehow. Talk about a news item going viral! Something like this was just MADE for the internet gossip sites!
Elaine muttered something incomprehensible in her sleep and snuggled her fantastic body into mine again. It was a long time before I fell into a fitful doze.
October 25th, 2011
I was awakened sometime after dawn, and through the hazy background of an especially erotic dream, I became slowly aware that Elaine was once again stroking my iron-hard erection. Sunlight filtered in through the bedroom window, casting a cheery glow across a tableau that I believe I shall never forget. My buxom wife still lay beside me, but she had moved lower in relation to my prone figure, her face just inches from my stiff manhood, watching in mute fascination as her fingers stroked up my shaft, then paused before moving back downward, caressing, fondling. Her hand felt slick, slippery; and as I strained my eyes to see what was happening, I observed that my cock was coated and shiny. Elaine’s hand went to her mouth for an instant between strokes, and I realized that she was using her saliva to make her efforts more enjoyable on my part.
I couldn’t suppress a loud groan. “And good morning to YOU, Pet,” I managed to mutter.
“I couldn’t wait,” she said, never taking her eyes from her task. “I watched you sleeping for the longest time … but then I just had to do this. Lie back and let me. Please, Rod.” Her rhythm never slackened, and with a shuddering sigh, I nestled my head back into my pillow and basked in the feelings she was causing.
But then something changed. Warm. Wet. Sucking. I struggled up to look again, but her long brown hair was obscuring the view. This wasn’t right, I told myself. Elaine had given me head only once during our two years together … back before we were married. She had told me that night that she “didn’t like the taste,” even though I had stopped her before I came. She had demurely refused to repeat the act, and I had never argued with her about it, nor had I made any effort to make her feel guilty about withholding oral pleasures. She loved it when I gave HER enjoyment through the use of tongue and lips, but it had always been an unspoken agreement between us that pleasures were to give and take at our individual discretions, and never to be a cause for hard feelings. This was love, after all, and respect was the greatest manifestation of love.
“Pet,” I moaned, “I … I … thought you didn’t … um … like to ….”
“Oh, Rod, shut up,” she chided, continuing the rhythmic stroking with her strong, slim fingers while she pulled her lips away from me long enough to answer. “I can’t believe how your cock is throbbing! I can’t believe how much you’re enjoying this!” She ran her free hand up and gently rubbed her palm across my stomach. “Your muscles are so taught! They’re quivering!” The errant hand came back down and cupped my balls. “I am going to make you cum SO hard!” She lowered her head again and began sucking.
I hesitated. Was this the “enhancement” I had read about in the book? If so what should I do about it? I reached down and put my hand on her head with the intention of forcing her away from me and perhaps breaking this hypnotic spell she was under. But WAS she? Oh, God this felt good! Her head was bobbing up and down, and her hand on my slick pole was moving as well, matching the movements of her spectacular mouth. There was a sudden, familiar welling up within my loins, and before I could react, I was past the point of no return.
“Elaine!” I croaked. “I’m … I’m going to …!” And my body convulsed, arching up, my hips straining off the bed. “Aaaahhh!” I screamed, and I felt my fluids gushing through me, out of me, into her. Over and over. It seemed to go on forever.
She gave a surprised, pleased little “Mmmphhh!” of a sound as my cum started flowing, kept up the suction with her mouth, stopped for a moment, sucked again, stopped, restarted. It took me a long twenty or thirty seconds to realize that she was swallowing … over and over, while her pumping hand continued to milk every drop from my quivering, shaking, euphoric body. She finally stopped her manual stroking and held my shaft at its base, while she licked it, full length, like a long, fleshy popsicle, then sucked at its tip again and licked some more. I just lay there, my muscles relaxing, my mind floating.
She relinquished my cock at last and scooted her body upwards until her face was even with mine, our noses touching, her full breasts flattening against my chest. Her eyes sparkled with excitement. “Oh my GOSH, Rod! That was so fantastic! I can’t BELIEVE how hard you came! You were cumming forever! God, I LOVED doing that! I can’t WAIT to do it again!”
My breathing had finally slowed. I was really concerned by this, but her enthusiasm had caught me off guard. “Pet,” I stammered, “that was really great. But I thought you hated doing that. I thought you hated the way it tasted. You told me that once.”
“Oh, that was a LONG time ago. And I always LOVE the way you make me feel when you go down on ME. And … and … I realized that I’d been awfully unfair to you by not reciprocating. I’ve been horrible! I’m SO sorry. And being here looking at you while you slept … and you were really hard … and I love you SO much … and suddenly, I just HAD to do it to you like that. And Rod … you tasted GOOD! I LOVED it! And I’ve wasted SO much time by not doing it until now. And ….”
“Elaine!” I interrupted. She fell silent, looking curiously into my eyes. “Pet, don’t you think it’s a little strange that this revelation came over you so suddenly?”
“Well, like I said, you look so delicious lying there, sleeping, and I ….”
“What happened to you last night?” I implored.
“Last night?” She really seemed puzzled now. “What do you mean?”
“During your ‘book event?’ You said that the author at your little party hypnotized you. What do you think happened?”
Her eyes narrowed. “I didn’t suck him off, if that’s what you mean.” I didn’t respond to that, but I kept my eyes tender and filled with concern. Eventually, her countenance softened … she blinked … her brow furrowed in thought. “You think I liked doing that to you so much because … because I’ve been mentally altered somehow. You think this is some sort of post hypnotic suggestion.” She made it a statement.
“What do YOU think, Pet?”
She has a habit of nibbling on the corner of her lower lip when she finds something troubling. Her eyes had shifted and lost focus, and it was obvious that she was thinking hard about this. Despite her preoccupation, she obviously found something to her liking as she chewed her lip, and her pink tongue began licking at the corners of her mouth. It suddenly dawned on me that she had just discovered a few wayward drops of my semen that needed tending to.
After a long minute, her eyes focused on mine again. “I had a crush on Reginald Rollins when I was fifteen,” she told me earnestly. I could only look at her blankly. She smiled. “I had a crush on Pete Smithers when I was eighteen … and I secretly hoped Ron Hopson would ask me out on a second date when I was a sophomore at UCSB, and I cried when he didn’t.” I gawked a bit. “But in my whole, entire life, there’s only been you, Rod. I was a virgin when you took me that first time, and even though I gossiped with my girlfriends in high school and college about sex, the truth of the matter is that everything I know, YOU taught me. I may have THOUGHT about other guys, but I’ve only loved you, Rodney Haversham!”
I kissed her lightly. “What in the world are you talking about?”
“If that hypnotist planted something in my brain that made it easier for me to please you, then I don’t think it matters, does it? It’s still only YOU that I’m pleasing. Right?” Her eyes narrowed accusingly again. “And what makes you think that I don’t have the ingenuity to come up with a new way of satisfying my man all on my own?” She stretched her arms up and put them around my neck, flattening her body against mine even more.
“Ingenious, yes,” I told her lightly, and kissed her. I rolled over onto my back, dragging her atop me, and I put my arms around her waist, lowering my right hand to clutch her left buttock. “After all, I married you for your magnificent … mind.”
She giggled, but then sobered and gazed imploringly at me. “And Rod … PLEASE let me do that to you again soon. Please?”
I smiled. “It’s a terrible waste, you know. Every sperm is sacred.” Since we’d started trying to get pregnant, we’d often invoked “Monty Python’s Meaning of Life.”
“I never really knew just how much of it there was until just now,” she told me, blushing. But then she looked imploring into my eyes. “Please?”
Breakfast that morning was an interesting affair. I was desperate to determine just how “under the influence” my beautiful wife was after her evening’s dalliance into the realm of hypnosis. On the other hand, she simply didn’t seem worried about her sudden shift of preferences concerning oral sex, and in fact, genuinely relished her newfound ability to satisfy me with toe-curling, spine-tingling, screamingly fulfilling orgasms. Now, when we happen to engage in either morning or afternoon sex, the hours immediately following provide a subtly changed atmosphere. Elaine goes about her chores with a sort of dopey, contented countenance that is, quite frankly, contagious.
And so it was that, sitting across from each other over our bowls of oatmeal, she reached out and played with my fingers, gazing rapturously into my eyes, sighing often, and looking as if our breakfast nook was Cloud Nine.
“This morning was fantastic,” she muttered dreamily.
I groped for something to say. “I can’t believe you act so satisfied. I didn’t please YOU.”
“You ALWAYS please me,” she responded earnestly. “You ALWAYS make me cum. Every time. And you work so hard at it. It felt so … so … WONDERFUL to do that for YOU.”
I cleared my throat. “I never thanked you for the book.”
“You’re welcome,” she said simply.
I was really having to struggle for information here. “What did YOU think of it? Did you look through it before you bought it?”
Her brow furrowed for a long moment, but then she seemed to dismiss it. “No, I just thought you’d like a copy.” The smile faltered for another instant before settling back on her pretty lips. “Do you think it’s worth anything?”
“Probably not very much,” I answered, trying to find some way to figure out how much she really knew about the book without coming right out and asking point blank. “I’ll keep it, though. It will remind me of you.” We just looked into each other’s eyes for awhile, holding hands like a couple of smitten teens. “It’s sort of a strange subject though, don’t you think?”
Again her brow wrinkled in puzzled thought. “Um … I … uh … didn’t really get a good look at it. What’s it about?“
I regarded her closely. “Hypnosis.”
But that seemed to satisfy her, and her contented smile returned. “Well, that makes sense. He’s a hypnotist, after all. I’m glad you like it. Do you want some more cinnamon toast?”
I decided not to press further. She was obliviously happy, and I didn’t want to upset her if I didn’t have to. I was going to have to attack this problem at the source. While she busied herself with the toast, I went into my study and phoned the number from the book.
The address was in San Gabriel … not very far from Pasadena at all. But the Los Angeles area can be exasperating at times … most of the time, actually … and there was no direct way to get there. So I just followed my GPS in the late afternoon traffic through what seemed to be dozens of traffic lights and turns. It was a fairly nice apartment complex, but nothing outstanding. The units were larger than they appeared from the outside, though, and when I rang the bell I was ushered into a small den-slash-library. I was not surprised to recognize the lady doing the ushering as the girl in the photographs which adorned my signed first edition. Other than saying “Good afternoon, Mr. Haversham,” she was very closed-mouth, and I got the impression she was angry about something. “My husband will be with you in a minute. He’s just finishing up with another … client.” And she turned on her heel and left.
Since I’d been summarily dismissed by my hostess, I decided to explore a little. I scanned the bookshelves … maybe two dozen shelves altogether, containing, I estimated, three or four hundred books. Half of them were modern softcover fiction. There were only a few books on hypnosis, but there were several copies of the same book Elaine had brought me. And to my utter amazement, there were a number of an identically bound volumes entitled “Using Erotic Hypnosis to Voluntarily Enslave Your Husband or Boyfriend,” by Catharine Cathwright. I took down a copy and examined it. It was set up identically to the book I had at home … same publisher, same everything, technically speaking. The pictures showed a handsome man of about thirty in the same poses and undergoing the same various levels of hypnotic trance induction as the lovely Catharine had displayed in my book.
As I stood there, gawking at this new concept in literature, I was interrupted by the sound of two men talking. I watched them walk past the den and on to the front door. The elder of the two opened the portal, seeing the other man out. “Henry, I know you and Jenny are going to love this new lifestyle. I guarantee you that she’s going to be overjoyed by your new level of control over her. You’re a very, very lucky man to have found such a girl. Give me a call if you have any questions or run into any problems … but if you just follow the directions in the book, you won’t be sorry about any of this. Goodbye.”
He walked back to the den and approached me with an outstretched right hand. “Mr. Haversham … may I call you ‘Rod?’ Rod, I’m Reggie. Thanks for coming over on such short notice. It’s really a pleasure to meet you.”
I hesitated before shaking hands with him. If he noticed, he didn’t show it. The dark-haired beauty had followed him in, and stood behind him with pursed lips. I still held the book I had been examining in my left hand, which dangled by my side. I figured his age at about thirty, though he was definitely NOT the hypnotic subject pictured in the second book. His eyes were sharp and clear … but above everything else, cheerful. He wore an expression of openness and friendliness and his handshake was firm and genuine. I was absolutely astounded to find that my first impression of him was good. I don’t know what I’d expected … but it wasn’t that.
Before I could say a word, he turned toward his wife. “Cathy, please get a bag.”
That, of course, didn’t mean a thing to me, but it had a profound effect on her. She seemed to be having several conflicting emotions … exasperation, anger, perhaps desperation. At his command, her lower lip started to tremble and a tear slid from her left eye. “Reggie … Reggie, please! Twenty-five grand! I worked SO hard on that girl! She didn’t want to come at first, but I just KNEW she’d be a PERFECT subject, and I ….”
He turned and held her by the shoulders. “Cathy,” he said in a stern, placating tone. “We’ve been through all of this. I do not charge my friends. Period.”
“Friends? You only just met him!”
He let go of her left shoulders and gently stroked her cheek with the backs of his fingers, wiping away the tear. “You need to obey now,” he told her gently. “You need to smile at me and nod your pretty head and obey me. You don’t need to understand my reasons, you just need to be my submissive … compliant … obedient … acquiescent … subservient little girl.” With each adjective, her breath seemed to catch, her eyes fluttered, her body quivered. He let go of her, and she swayed slightly. “Now, go get a bag, Cathy.”
She blinked. She seemed defeated. “Twenty-five grand, Reggie,” she said quietly.
“Tell you what,” he told her cheerily. “I’ll charge him double for the second one.”
Her lips twitched at the corners until she was giving him a little smile. “Now you’re making fun of me. They’re both still head-over-heels in love, and they probably always will be.” She glanced briefly in my direction and blushed, as if realizing for the first time that I had heard everything they’d said. Then she turned and walked out of the room.
“Listen,” I told the man as he turned back toward me, “I don’t know what’s in the ‘bag’ you’re talking about, but you can save it. I’m not in the market … for any price. I only came here today because ….”
“Rod,” he interrupted, “there’s a bar downstairs at the street corner. Can I buy you a drink? No catches, no gimmicks. I’d just like to talk.”
Once again, I was caught completely off guard by his friendly attitude. I hesitated, uncertain. Cathy came back into the room and handed him a small green velvet cloth bag, which he put into his pocket. “My dear, we’re going down for a drink. I should be back in about an hour. I’ll call you if I’m going to be later.” And he stepped closer to her, took her in his arms and kissed her passionately. She seemed shocked, and her hands went instinctively to his upper arms, hesitated, then snaked up and around his neck. Slowly, her knees buckled, and her body hung limply in his embrace. Finally, he hoisted her upright and she struggled to get her feet back under her. She was breathing hard. “I’ll see you in about an hour. Don’t hold dinner,” he told her.
“Yes, Reggie,” she panted.
And he held out his arm as an indication that I should precede him to the front door. I was almost out of the apartment before I realized that I was still holding the book. Apologetically, I handed it to him, and he barked a laugh and tossed it unceremoniously on a table in the foyer. “I guess you have a lot of questions about our little ‘family business,’” he said, leading the way out and down toward the neighborhood bar and grill. “I’ll tell you all about it. Have you eaten yet?”
Now, in the last chapter, I described dear old Reggie by using the moniker “verbose,” and paraphrased the introduction to his book. Allow me to do pretty much the same thing here, since the personal Reggie turned out to be surprising like the written version. The first thing he did in that booth in the bar was pass me his business card, which proved him to be a sales rep for a restaurant supply firm. He told me he could make me a very good deal on an industrial deep fat fryer. The hypnosis thing was evidently a sideline, but one that had, slowly but surely, become their primary source of income.
Reginald Cathwright (assuming everything he told me was accurate), became interested in hypnosis during his junior year in college. His biggest surprise at the time was the fact that there was no shortage of sweet young lady volunteers whose greatest desire was that they be given the distinct opportunity of surrendering their free will to him. He, being a chivalrous chap, was more than happy to make those particular dreams a reality. Sex was assumed to be part of the deal, and he certainly was not averse to making those assumptions come true. Word of his “abilities” spread of its own accord, and by the end of his senior year, women from all over the campus were seeking him out, hoping to experience firsthand the sense of emotional hypnotic submission they subconsciously craved.
Things were going splendidly until a graduate intern from a financial institution approached him, asking (as they all did) if he wouldn’t mind stripping her of all the dreary burdens of a free-thinking woman and please, please take her heart, take her free will, take her soul, and use her as he wished. Pretty routine, by that point, actually; except for one small thing. HE fell in love with HER. Who would have guessed?
Cathy, as a newly minted hypnotic sex slave wife, tried to give her husband everything she possibly could in life. That’s evidently just what hypnotic sex slave wives DO, I guess. Because she worked in the financial industry, she decided that one of the particular things she could provide was her help in making him rich. He, unfortunately, was not as inclined toward monetary rewards as she. He wanted to take her places … do things … have fun; and all of these fine goals were far from advantageous in furthering his wealth. They argued from time to time, but she always capitulated, for that, too, is just what hypnotic sex slave wives do. However, that did not stop her from making suggestions … one of which was the scheme for spotting women with an obvious proclivity toward sexual slavery and helping them attain their goal … for a fee.
He had his standards, though, and morality ranked far above riches in his book. He needed to make sure this was what the girl really wanted … and he needed to make sure it was what her husband or boyfriend really wanted … before he would begin the process of enslavement. Still, Cathy’s idea seemed to work from the very beginning. There were still points of disagreement, of course. Cathy thought they should charge more … but he considered it primarily a hobby, rather than a job. Eventually, they compromised by charging different prices depending on what the couple could comfortably afford.
Then Cathy had come up with the concept of hypnotic enslavement for subservient MEN, as well. Reggie had found the whole idea a bit of a turn-off, but his pretty wife believed that, through instruction during deep hypnosis, he could adequately teach HER to become adept at the art. They’d tried it, and he found that she had a great knack for it. She was very beautiful, and by dressing for the part of hypnotic dominatrix, obedient men were practically entranced as soon as they set eyes on her. There were far fewer couples who sought out this particular relationship, of course … not necessarily because there was a lack of submissive men, but because their wives and girlfriends often lacked adequate dominant tendencies; and Reggie refused to let hypnosis get involved when he knew that the end result would not be mutually satisfactory.
There were a few instances when they provided a “dual service,” in which both husband and wife were convinced to share hypnotic fantasies, then “trade off” by letting first one be dominant, then the other. Cathy implanted hypnotic suggestions in the man, and Reggie did the same for the woman. These cases proved quite gratifying, at least to Reggie, but it meant double the effort for no greater financial reward.
And through it all, Cathy remained firmly enslaved by her husband, not because he chose to keep her submissive and subservient, but because it was her choice to be so.
Then, just lately, Cathy came up with yet another variation on the same theme … gays and lesbians. This really made Reggie uncomfortable … not (he told himself) because he was homophobic … but because it just “wasn’t his cup of tea.” Cathy made a persuasive argument, though, especially when she suggested that they simply continue as they had been, with her taking all the men clients, and he concentrating only on the women. And the number of homosexual couples who fit their “profile” was surprising. It made sense, however, when they realized that there tended to be naturally dominant and submissive partners in a majority of such pairings.
Finally, after doing this “hypnotic enslavement for profit” gig for almost five years, the money started pouring in. Cathy began talking more about Roth IRA’s and other tax deferred retirement accounts. Reggie suddenly had his eye on a house up at Lake Arrowhead.
The concept of the books had been his idea, though it had irked Cathy a little. One of their “clients” had turned out to be the wife of a printer/publisher from Altadena, but for once, they had wound up spending money rather than making it. It had been a great business investment, however. They had even written the text in such a way that it didn’t matter if the “couple” was straight or gay. Thinking back on it, I realized he was right. The “wife or girlfriend” had been the main subject in my book, but her significant other had always been referred to as “spouse or lover.” The hypnotist was always out of frame in the pictures, and a girlfriend is always a girlfriend, after all. (I won’t get into all the political upheaval that California was going through in 2011 about legalizing gay marriage, but even THAT context would be acceptable in the book.)
By this time in the diatribe, we were well into our hamburgers and Reggie had ordered yet another round of beer. “I wound up being real friends with that publisher,” he told me, eating and gesturing with his free hand. “And you would not BELIEVE what that guy does for fun! He gets modeling clay, and he ….”
“Makes letters of the alphabet,” I guessed.
He gawked openly at me. “How the hell did you KNOW that?”
I shrugged. “He runs a small press. I doubt it’s enough to keep him alive financially. It’s more a hobby. People might hate their jobs, but they all LOVE their hobbies. AND, he set up your book in a totally unique typeface. He created it. Those letters of the alphabet were a labor of love. Professional printers nowadays all do it on the computer … but the old timers, they still like to get their hands dirty.”
“Damn!” he muttered. “How old are you, if you don’t mind me asking? Twenty-five?”
“And you’re a nuclear physicist?”
“What’s the difference?”
“Physicists think deep thoughts. Engineers make them happen. And I’m not even THAT, anymore. I’m … um … sort of … on hiatus.”
He shifted in his seat almost guiltily. “Would you … uh … would you mind telling me about that?”
“About what?” I leaned forward and found some of that righteous indignation I’d lost after meeting him. “Just what, exactly, did you DO to my wife?” I asked firmly. “What did you make her tell you?”
That didn’t seem to have the desired effect on him at all. For the first time, I realized he was drunk. “Well, naturally, the woman is immensely proud of you. She was scared to death by your illness … she told me that you’d almost died … but she simply couldn’t BE any more in love with you.” He swayed slightly in his seat. “Could you tell me about it? You’re a genuine hero, dude.”
“I am NOT a hero!” I said angrily, emphatically. “The REAL heroes went back into that place the next day … and the day after … KNOWING that they might not come out again … KNOWING that even if they did come out alive, they would probably be critically sick. They did it for their families and for their friends and for their country! THOSE were the heroes. Don’t even begin to TRY to put me in THEIR league!” I suddenly suspected that I had raised my voice, and I glanced around the bar. People were staring at me, and even when I made eye contact with them, they kept looking. “Oh, crap,” I muttered, staring at my empty beer glass and realizing it had been my third. The waiter was putting a fourth full glass down in front of me, and he was staring, too.
I took a deep breath and gazed at the drunken hypnotist. “Your wife was right,” I told him calmly. “You’re a financial idiot.” He just gazed at me with some stupefied sense of wonder. “Let’s just say for a moment,” I continued, “that maybe I WOULD have paid you twenty-five thousand for that silly piece of quartz in that little bag you have in your pocket.”
“Cubic Zirconium,” he corrected pleasantly.
“You would give that up to hear a guy tell you a war story in a bar?”
“Dude, I’d give it up just to KNOW you.”
I shook my head slowly, but I couldn’t seem to clear the cobwebs. I hadn’t really talked about this during the past eight months with anyone except members of my immediate family. One reporter had gotten wind of it, but he’d been easily discouraged. It was something I just didn’t do … with anyone. But Reggie sort of has that affect on a person, I guess, because now I did talk about it. I talked about it all. I talked a lot. I must have droned for the better part of an hour. At times, a small crowd formed around us and listened.
I told him what I’d done, and I answered all the questions that people usually ask, and even more. How bad WAS the earthquake? (It was so strong and lasted so long that three people in my group had gotten seasick … one violently so.) How long between the earthquake and the tsunami? (It varied all along the coast, but where I was, it was 41 minutes. We had known it was probably coming, of course, but not when it would arrive. And it was not really a wave … at least, not the way most people think of a wave … not like a wave on the beach. It was more like a “swell.” The water just started rising, and it didn’t stop.) How had I escaped it? (Someone had lowered the fire escape ladder on the Security Building, and we all climbed up to the roof, one at a time … but I had been burdened by the dead weight of my unconscious lady, her body slung over my shoulder. I was the next-to-last person in our group to make the climb. Perhaps if I’d been a little quicker, that last member would have made it, too. He was halfway up, but was swept away.) A Navy guy asked me why they didn’t scram the reactor. (One of the reasons that there’s never been a nuclear accident in the U.S. Navy is that they run drills constantly whenever they’re at sea. Even the non-nuclear types hear all the announcements on the ship’s 1MC system, so every sailor knows SOME of the vernacular.) (If you don’t know what it means to “scram” a reactor, you can look it up on the internet. And the answer was that they DID scram them. They scrammed them ALL, just as soon as the earthquake struck. But the quake had cut all the power lines, and the tsunami flooded the emergency generators, which were providing cooling flow to the reactor chambers themselves. They immediately started overheating. That’s why we put together a team to go back in and try to start them back up … unsuccessfully).
And on and on and on I talked. Somebody bought another round … and another. But finally, I put up my hands and declared that was all … I’d talked enough. Those listeners-in around us simply nodded and left us alone. A couple of them insisted on shaking my hand.
I staggered to the bathroom, then used my cell phone to call Elaine and tell her where I was, and I asked her to please come and get me, since I was certainly in no shape to drive home. I sat heavily again across from Reggie.
“Thanks, dude,” he told me sincerely. I suddenly noticed the green velvet bag sitting in front of me.
I slid it back across the table toward him. “I have no intention of doing anything to Elaine,” I told him seriously, “using hypnosis, or anything else. I love her just the way she is. I don’t WANT to change her.”
He smiled warmly. “Rod, hypnosis wouldn’t change her … it would simply allow her to be who she IS.”
I gave him a sour expression. “You’re drunk. You’re not making any sense.”
His smiled didn’t falter. “Drunk, maybe. But I’m not making sense to you because you’re not willing to accept the truth about her. She’s submissive, subservient, obedient …. She contains all the traits of the perfect sex slave. And outwardly, she is NOT your sex slave only because she believes you do not WANT her to be your sex slave. Make sense?”
I blinked at him. “No.”
Finally, the smile changed to a look of patient consternation. “Dude, for someone so smart, you can be kinda dense. I did not do ANYTHING to your lovely bride. Well, except for one or two itty bitty little suggestions. But she is who she is. I did NOT change her.”
I considered this for a moment. “Good,” I told him.
Now he finally frowned. “Rod, do you love your wife?”
“Well, of course I love her.”
“Don’t you want to give her what she wants?
I studied him. “You’re speaking in riddles.”
“Dude,” he said imploringly, “give her what she craves! Let her be the girl she WANTS to be! While she was really deep in trance, I asked her what her greatest regret in her relationship with you was. Can you guess her answer?”
The question was like a cold shower. Suddenly, I felt sober. I refused to respond, but I locked him with a stern, questioning stare.
“She told me that she wished she could give you a really good blow job. She said that she didn’t like doing that … that she didn’t think she COULD do it. But she wanted SO much to give you that pleasure. Don’t look so shocked, dude. That is … BEEEEP! … the NUMBER ONE ANSWER among submissive chicks. She just wants to please YOU, and she felt she wasn’t doing that because of HER shortcomings. And so … I made a few really deep-set hypnotic suggestions, and I turned a dislike into a ‘I gotta have me some of THAT’ sort of desire.” He leaned forward toward me. “In other words, I gave her what she WANTS. Is that a crime, do you think?”
I sat back and put a shaking hand to my forehead. “Elaine is incredibly bright and fun and witty and ….”
“Rod, you wouldn’t change any of that. She will still be HER! You would just let her be the ‘HER’ she wants to be.”
Suddenly, I was out of arguments. Could it really be that simple, or was I being entranced by this professional hypnotist into believing what he wanted me to believe?
“Look,” he said, confidentially, leaning toward me again and lowering his voice. “When you get her home, tell her to do something outrageous. Something embarrassing … something sexual …. something humiliating. She’ll do it, I can guarantee you. Not because of some hypnotic suggestion on my part …” he raised his right hand, “… I swear to God. She’ll do it because it’s in her NATURE to do it. She’ll do it, because deep down inside, she is ALREADY your sex slave. Obeying you pleases her. It arouses her. Try it, Rod. You’ll see. And then, ask her what she thinks about when she makes love to you.”
I glowered at him. “Man, nobody should EVER ask a question like that.”
“Do it, dude. Ask her. I didn’t prompt her … (again, he raised his hand in a Scout’s honor gesture) and you’ll never guess what she’s going to tell you. I can absolutely guarantee you that you’re going to be super-surprised.” He took a breath and thought a minute. “If two people are in love, then the ONLY problems they have boil down to a simple lack of communication.”
I couldn’t help but give him a sad smile. “If only it were really that simple.”
“But it IS!” he persisted. And then he hesitated and examined me carefully. “What DO you think your problem is, Rod?”
I paused, too. I felt very uncomfortable talking about such intimate things with a man I had virtually just met, but the beer was flowing through my veins and the guy was so damned personable. “We’re … um … having a small problem with conception.”
He blinked at me. “Well, I guess you’re right. You can hypnotize her all day long, but you can never give her a deep enough suggestion to make her pregnant.” He thought some more. “I suppose you’ve been to experts about it.” And his eyes widened with a sudden thought. “Holy shit! It’s what happened to you in Japan, isn’t it? It’s the radiation thing!”
I nodded glumly. “Sperm count is practically nonexistent,” I commiserated. “I guess I should be happy that all the rest of the plumbing still works.”
“Damn straight,” he told me with feeling. “You SHOULD be happy … you DESERVE to be happy … and so does your wife. Now, don’t be a Bozo! Take this thing,” (he held up the little green pouch) “try doing what I’ve said, and give the little lady what she yearns for.” His eyes suddenly shifted past me, over my shoulder. He slid the velvet bag back across the table to me. “Shit! She’s here! Take this! Put it in your pocket!” Without thinking, I did what he said, and then I looked up into Elaine’s questioning brown eyes.
“Uh … Hi, Reggie,” she said, glancing at him nervously. Then she turned her tender gaze on me again. “Honey, you shouldn’t be getting like this. Not yet. We’ve worked so hard building your strength back up!” She faced my drinking buddy again, this time with an angry expression. “And YOU! If I’d known you were going to be a rotten influence on my husband, I’d have never bought your silly book about … um …” she struggled for the right memory, “about … uh … whatever.” She dismissed the thought and laid a gentle hand on my shoulder. “Rod, let’s go home … please? Where’s your car?”
I held up my keys. “Bartender moved it into his parking lot for me. Said I could leave it there overnight. Really nice guy. Have you eaten yet?”
“Please, Rod? Let’s go home.”
“Sure.” I stood up, and found that I really enjoyed the feel of her arm around my waist. “Thanks for all the kind words,” I told Reggie.
He smiled up at us. “You two have a great life,” he told us, with what I believed to be a great deal of sincerity.
I can remember thinking that I hadn’t been this drunk since my early years of college. I can remember counting out four aspirin tablets and taking them with a glass of water. I can remember hiding the little green bag in a drawer in my dresser. Sometime in the middle of the night, I can remember Elaine pressing her naked body into mine and holding me very tightly.
But that’s about all I can remember about the remainder of that evening.