Christopher, Craig & Co.
Part 82: Stressful Situations.
Oddly enough today’s topic in Psychology of Adjustment was stress. At this point, I could probably write the book.
Not that it seemed my class would read it. The students appeared to be grossly unprepared for the class discussion.
Julian, the waiter from Belladonna’s, had at least read the assignment, though his only point seemed to center on how lame the chapter had been and how everyone has stress so we should all get over it.
Once I admonished the class to get caught up on their homework—Scott and Wade included—I dismissed them.
Scott tossed his notebook in his bag and approached the front of the room. “I didn’t have time to read,” he said with a shrug. “But I know about stress and stress management.”
I couldn’t contradict him. “It’s still difficult to have class discussion on material no one has prepared.”
“Kids today…” Scott teased with a grin.
“Listen,” I said, “How difficult is it to find out who owns a website?”
“That was an abrupt change of topic. Why?”
“I think there may be a new player in the game.”
Scott looked at me curiously.
“There’s a website…” I noticed Nick Phillips hovering nearby and let my sentence trail off. “Did you need something, Nick?”
He wavered then shook his head, his dark blond hair bouncing. “No, I guess not,” he said, then left the room.
Scott and I were alone in the classroom. “A new player?”
“Yes. There’s a website which seems to be inducing trance and obedience in guys who view it.”
“You’re not serious.”
I cocked an eyebrow. “With all of the stuff going on around here this is what you doubt?” I grabbed a piece of scrap paper and jotted down the address. “Be careful if you pull up the site.”
“How did you find out about it?”
“A friend has become addicted to it. After checking it out, I’m willing to bet he’s not alone.”
“A friend, huh?”
“I’ll see what I can do.”
I leaned forward and kissed him. “Thanks. Oh, and don’t forget I have dinner plans tonight.”
“With…a friend?” he asked. The light glittered in his dark eyes.
“If I tell you absolutely everything, Scott, there’ll be no mystery left between us.”
“And no surprises,” he muttered.
“Have fun,” he said. “Maybe we can meet up later?”
I licked my lips. “What do you think?”
Mike and I had made plans to meet for dinner at 7. In the meantime I began reaching out to my contacts on the internet to see if anyone knew who was behind the Masterdslave website. I must admit I found it odd that someone was building a harem of trained boys and no one I knew seemed to know anything about it. Granted I know a small segment of the population; however, my “friends” tend to explore interests not necessarily in the mainstream.
I pulled into the parking lot at La Trattoria a few minutes early and headed inside, opting to wait for my dinner companion at the bar. I ordered a glass of wine and sipped it, watching the door.
Mike was fashionably late, but when his blue eyes swept the room and landed on me, his whole face lighting up in a smile of recognition, it was difficult to be upset with him.
He met me at the bar. “Christopher, I’m sorry I’m late. I can explain.”
I waved off his words. “What are you drinking?”
“I’d love a glass of wine, but I shouldn’t.”
I frowned. “I don’t think you need to worry about one glass.” I flagged down the bartender and ordered another glass of wine. No sooner had it arrived did the hostess come to escort us to our table.
Mike made heads turn even in the dimly lit Italian restaurant. Of course, a tall, blue-eyed blonde with porn star good looks would likely draw attention in any setting.
We sat, perused the menus, ordered, then settled in to talk.
“So, tell me about life in California.”
“It’s great.” He took a gulp of wine. “Well, it’s not bad. It’s kind of lonely. I mean, the people at work aren’t people to be friends with, you know?”
He smiled sadly. “Mike Tool is a big deal. I tour the country and make appearances and sign all sorts of things. But I miss stuff like this. You know, going out to dinner with a friend or just hanging out.”
“Sounds like you’ve been homesick.”
“Maybe a little. I think this trip was really to see if there was anything left for me here. You know, I never finished college. I’ve been wondering about moving back here and seeing about getting back into SUNY to finish my degree.”
“I think that could be arranged if it’s what you want.”
Our waitress set bread and salads before us.
“I guess I want a chance at a normal life. Like yours.”
I nearly choked on my salad. I laughed nervously to cover. “My life is hardly normal.”
He seemed fascinated by a tomato on his plate. “It has to be more than mine.”
“Did something happen?”
He set down his fork. “I blacked out again today. I don’t even know for how long. I was on the computer and I woke up on webcam covered in—” his voice dropped “—cum.”
“I take it you were on the website you told me about?”
“Yes. I tried not to go back. I don’t even remember logging back into it.”
I reached across the table and patted his forearm. “Don’t be too hard on yourself. I’ve begun looking into that site. What’s happening to you is not your fault.”
Mike hesitated with his glass halfway to his lips. “What do you mean?”
I chose my words carefully. “That web address you gave me is attached to a site which is designed to increase obedience and submission in any man who views it.”
Mike blanched. “What?”
I held up a hand. “It implants a few suggestions in your mind, encouraging you to view the site repeatedly, thereby increasing the need to revisit the site and allowing the site to achieve dominance over your mind. My guess would be once you have been conditioned by the site it is relatively easy for a dom to take control of your body for a time—which would explain your blackouts and sexual behavior.”
“Christopher, that’s fucking insane.”
Several nearby diners glanced at us.
“Queer Pizza Boy,” I said quietly.
Mike’s eyes seemed to lose focus as he continued to gaze at me. His hands drifted to his lap.
“When you awaken you will understand what I told you about the website and you will remain calm as we discuss it. Do you understand, boy?”
“You’re a good boy, Queer Pizza Boy. 1…2…3.”
Mike shook his head and glanced around. He took a sip of wine and licked his lips. He leaned forward and said quietly, “Are you telling me I can be controlled by any guy who knows how to use that website?”
I nodded. “I suspect so.”
“I can’t believe it. What am I gonna do?”
Our meals arrived at that moment and I waited for the waitress to exit earshot before replying. Mike looked so tortured I wanted to say something reassuring.
“You I can help,” I said, less confident of the fact than I sounded. “In fact, after dinner, I think we should go back to my house and see if we can break your dependence on the site.”
“You think you can?”
I smiled. “You came to me for help, didn’t you?”
“Have I ever let you down?”
Mike grinned. “No, Christopher.”
“Well, I’m not going to start now. The only thing that worries me is that there may be many men out there in cyberspace in the same position you’re in.”
Mike’s eyes widened.
“There’s just no way to tell—”
“Isn’t this a surprise?” The mellifluous voice reached my ears before its owner reached my line of vision.
My insides turned to ice.
“Darling, just point out my table. I need to say hello to my dear friend Christopher.”
The hostess delivered a menu to the table and gestured before returning to her station.
I plastered on the phoniest smile in the history of man as I directed my attention to Richard King.
“Richard,” I said in a tone generally reserved for naughty five year olds, “We have never been dear friends.”
“And whom have we here?” Richard continued. “Mike Tool? Christopher, I had no idea you were keeping company with international porn stars.”
Mike simply smiled, though I had a distinct feeling he was not happy to be addressed in such a manner.
“Mike and I are old friends,” I said graciously. “He understands what that word means.”
Richard laughed heartily. “I do enjoy these verbal sparring matches with you, Christopher. I am well acquainted with Mike. You might call him an investment of mine.”
“An investment?” I repeated inquisitively, hating myself for taking the bait.
“Why, yes. One of my companies owns Mike Tool’s contract.”
I had a terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach.
“You see, Royalty Films is a division of King Enterprises.”
To be continued in Part 83…
Christopher, Craig & Co.
Part 83: Spill The Wine.
Royalty Films was a division of King Enterprises.
I may be very ill.
My mind began to race. Just how long had Richard been back in my orbit without my knowing? Had he known I was hypnotizing Mike? Was that why Mike had been offered his contract? Or had Richard discovered this fact later, and orchestrated Mike’s return to town? Or had Richard only recently found out and I become incredibly paranoid?
“What is it, Christopher? You look rather pale.”
I looked up into Richard’s rugged face, his teeth bared in a smile which seemed carnivorous. And I knew I could show no weakness to this predator. I fleetingly wondered if it was possible to actually kill with kindness.
“Funny,” I said boisterously, “I feel just fine.” I smiled across the table at Mike. “It just goes to show you what a small world it is.”
Mike shrugged and nodded.
I turned my smile back to Richard. “I’d ask you to join us, but we’re just catching up after having not seen each other in quite sometime.”
Richard’s bravado seemed to flicker.
“And frankly, Richard, I’m not sure I could stomach dinner with you. You keep popping up, insinuating yourself in my life as though we were old friends. I want to make this perfectly clear so there’s no chance for misunderstanding. You don’t exist in my world, Richard. You’re barely a footnote in a chapter of my life long since past.”
“We were once much more than that to each other, boy,” Richard said through gritted teeth.
I laughed. And it was a genuine laugh. “Oh, I haven’t been a boy for a long time. I’m all grown up now. I’m a man in the prime of my life. I haven’t begun to weaken with age like you have—”
I saw it coming before I had a chance to stop it. A waiter strode by with a carafe of wine. In a fluid motion Richard grabbed the carafe and dumped it over my head.
Mike sucked in air.
Fellow diners reacted in surprise.
I lifted my napkin from my lap and dabbed at my face, still wearing a smile as rivulets of wine ran from my hair down my face.
And with venom I didn’t know I had, I spat out the words: “You’re dead to me, Dick.”
I thrust my hand in the air and called out, “Check, please!”
I don’t know what came over me. Something inside had simply snapped. I was so tired of dealing with Richard King that it had never before occurred to me I was still giving him power in my life. For so long I had allowed myself to view Richard as toxic. I had forgotten that not all vipers are deadly.
And with that knowledge came a freedom I hadn’t felt since Richard had reappeared in town. I wasn’t about to underestimate him. Don’t get me wrong. I simply wasn’t going to live in fear anymore.
It was time to take a much more proactive approach. And I would begin tomorrow. But tonight I was going to at least try to help Mike.
The wait staff at La Trattoria couldn’t have been nicer about cleaning up the wine. It was red, and no doubt my shirt was ruined, but it could be replaced. Mike and I had our dinners boxed to go and his car was currently following mine on the way to Greenhill Road.
I punched Scott’s speed dial on my cell phone. He answered the third ring.
“Hey, the bar’s deserted if you want to stop by.”
I laughed. “Maybe later. I have to change first.” I proceeded to fill him in on my confrontation with Richard.
“Are you sure it was wise to engage him like that?”
“Who cares?” I felt giddy—and not from the wine. “It’s time we find out what it is he’s doing here.”
“I just hope when we find out we’re not all sorry we know the answer.”
I pulled into the driveway and shut off the car. “Any luck with that website?”
“I haven’t had time to look into it yet.”
“Okay. I’m home and I need to change. I’ll stop by Kampas later.”
“See you then.” Scott disconnected.
Mike parked behind my car and walked toward the house carrying the bag of take out.
I had stripped off my shirt, but the wine had soaked through to my undershirt. I carried my coat and the balled up shirt as I ran into the house. It was freezing!
In the foyer Mike slipped out of his shoes.
I smiled. It had been a long time since he had been here, but he still remembered.
“Mike, you know where the kitchen is. Why don’t you get started on dinner while I go clean up?”
I ran up the stairs and into my bedroom. I was sticky from the wine and decided to shuck off my clothes and take a quick rinse off in the shower. In five minutes I had washed, toweled off, pulled on a fresh pair of khakis and a sweatshirt from the college, shoved my socked feet in sneakers, and jogged back down the stairs.
Mike had set the table and was flipping through a magazine.
“I decided to wait for you,” he said. “The food’s warming in the oven.”
I grabbed a mitt and pulled the two plates from the oven.
Mike smiled at me. “You look ready to go back to school yourself.”
“In a way I am. I’m teaching at the college again.”
“Will you still be there next semester?”
“I honestly don’t know.”
“I hope so. I’d like you to be my teacher.”
I shifted uncomfortably. Was it hot in here? “Would you like something cold to drink?”
Mike smiled. “Anything’s fine.”
After we had finished we took our coffee into the den. It seemed strange after all this time to be back in this room with Mike. But we wouldn’t be back in our usual places tonight.
“Have a seat at the desk, Mike,” I suggested.
“Bring up Masteredslave.com.”
“I thought I was supposed to avoid that, Christopher.”
“You will after tonight. I want to see what happens when you view the site.”
He looked at me and frowned.
“Do you trust me?”
“You know I do.”
“Then log on.”