The Further Adventures of Louis and Elle
Chapter Six. Louis and Elle Do Vegas.
“On behalf of Curious Mind Books and the Salpêtrière Hotel, my Queen, I welcome you to the Bower of Bliss!” Louis Wentworth opened the suite door and stood to one side, gesturing to his wife, hypnotherapist Elle Murphy, to enter.
She gazed around.
Though she was in a bit of a disgruntled mood at the moment, she had to admit that Louis’s publishers had done well by them. The suite had a sunken tub and Jacuzzi at the center, a huge king-bed sleeping area, and a most luxurious sitting-TV area—all separated by sliding panels for privacy if desired. Its view of the Strip—the searchlight of the Luxor, the strangely dilapidated looking towers of Excalibur, the elegant traceries of the Cosmopolitan—was breathtaking. Elle and Louis were through with their obligations for the day, and though the publicist had suggested dinner and a show together, Louis, under Elle’s strict instructions, had firmly begged off. There would be another appearance tomorrow; tonight, he told her, was for him and Elle. (Elle didn’t mind turning the young woman down, because the two of them had talked and Elle had gotten her to confess a number of things about her personal life that Elle, with her uniquely pro-woman perspective, could help her with.)
Still, Elle felt uncharacteristically peeved as she surveyed her new temporary realm. It was an unfamiliar feeling, and it took her a few minutes to recognize her as a long-lost friend—jealousy.
It was silly but not entirely unexpected. Curious Mind, which published Louis’s highly successful HYPNO-TEEN CHRONICLES, had sponsored an appearance by the author at a YA fiction fan convention in Las Vegas. Elle knew that Louis’s books (written with Elle’s hypnotic encouragement) were popular, especially with young girls. But she had been stunned by the number of female fans who had thronged his talk; and though all were “girls,” by no means all were “young girls,” or even teenagers, much less pre-teens.
Apparently YA fiction was read by many young women in their 20s. Fully grown women; attractive, carefully dressed and made-up women, some in heels and skirts and rouge, some in torn jeans and tattoos and eye shadow, some in not all that many clothes at all—
She’d had to watch these hussies fawning over Louis—HER Louis!—for nearly an hour after the talk, as he signed books and tolerated their flirting, and sometimes even flirted back, or wanted to. She knew that to be true because, standing nearby, she could hear him sometimes say to one, “You should meet my wife, Elle, she is the coolest person alive—“ And while that usually did the job of turning away the interloper’s interest, it also warned Elle that Louis had felt an attraction—since, after all, she had programmed that response into his brain for just such a situation.
Even worse, it didn’t always even douse the girl’s interest. In some, she could see, it simply whetted their competitive instincts, as if by seducing a happily married man they could score some obscure victory over ghosts from their own pasts—possessive stepmothers, perhaps, or the mean girl in middle school who had stolen their own boyfriend.
Worse yet, at the end of the event, Louis had been cornered by not one but two little blonde bubbleheads—twins, she had realized! Two pairs of adoring eyes, two pairs of perky little breasts, to pairs of French manicured toenails in two pairs of ever-so-cunning suede peep-toe booties.
Elle knew something about male fantasies, and she knew exactly where blonde twin bimbos ranked in those standings.
Hussies! Now, in the hotel suite, Elle stamped her graceful foot in frustration, then realized she needed to be careful with the pair of emerald-green Louboutin So Kate pumps she had “allowed” Louis to buy for her a few weeks ago. How could she have refused him? He begged so nicely, indeed dropped to his knees to the store (the store girls were amused but not seemingly surprised; apparently such displays happen in women’s shoe departments more than one would think). The pumps were nicely decorated with hypnotic swirls, and after taking them home Elle had verified that they had precisely that effect on her hypno-husband; she had kept him in a deep trance for two full days, under the impression that her hypnotic commands were actually being spoken by the shoes.
Louis had been during today’s event. But she concluded that, here in the land of the hussy, he still needed a good firm tug on his leash. And she had arranged just the thing for this evening.
“The publisher pulled strings and got us a reservation at Jean-Martin’s downstairs,” Louis said excitedly. “It’s the hottest new restaurant on the Strip. Unbelievably hard to get into.”
“Oh, darling, we will have to go another time,” Elle said. “I’ve made plans for us tonight.” She pressed a pair of tickets into his hand.
He looked at them and gave a puzzled frown. “Kate the Great—The RETURN TO OBEDIENCE Show?” he said. “Really? More hypnosis?”
“Silly boy,” she said, and trailed her red nails gently across his cheek. Like a cat, he involuntarily closed his eyes and stretched slightly in pleasure. “Kate is an old friend. She is semi-retired now. She married the love of her life and moved to an island in the Caribbean, but she’s back for a brief visit and I think we owe it to ourselves to see her perform.”
“Louis Wentworth!” She snapped her fingers and he fell silent and stared at her blankly. “Forget all about Jean-Martin’s!”
It was a literal command, and he literally did.
“Now, I need a bath, and a bath attendant. Forget everything else and draw a nice hot tub with bubbles.”
“Yes, Elle.” He stood there briefly with a somewhat stunned look on his face.
“Louis,” she said. “Now.”
Well, Louis thought, the RETURN TO OBEDIENCE Show was definitely not Jean-Martin’s, and the old casino hotel where it was playing was not the Salpêtrière. The “showroom” in fact was a curtained-off space in the middle of the casino floor; it was hard for him to imagine a lot of hypnosis successfully performed against the background of plink-plink-plink slot machines, exuberant shouts from the craps tables, and querulous voices calling out for more chips or another round of drinks. Of course, Elle had first hypnotized Louis at a crowded cocktail party, but in his memory there had not been any sound at all except her soothing voice lulling away his will.
At any rate, he didn’t give it a lot of thought, because if there was one thing he was sure of, it was that he would not need to worry about being hypnotized tonight. Elle had installed the very strongest protections in his mind against random stranger hypnosis. It simply could not occur unless she gave him direct instructions to go under. Otherwise he’d be a sitting duck for a stage hypnotist; but Elle was territorial, and so he had nothing to worry about.
The venue might not be impressive, but apparently the hypnotist—Kate the Great? Was that it?—had some fans who remembered her, because a line snaked back from the door to the curtained area. Elle, however, led him to the front of the line, where she presented her tickets, marked “VIP” in red, and they were immediately shown to seats in the front. A waitress offered them drinks. Louis started to order a margarita, but Elle said, “Forget about that, Louis,” and he did.
Instead, he looked around the room. There were perhaps 250 seats, gathered around tables in the small space, with waitresses threading their way through the narrow aisles between. By the time the crowd had filed in, almost every seat was taken. The crowd was diverse—some Vegas regulars or even residents, a smattering of retired tourists looking uncomfortable in loud shirts and aggressively comfortable shoes, college-age kids kicking up their heels on a Vegas weekend, some of them giggling blondes who would have looked right at home at the YA convention, and indeed might very well be ticketholders. A couple of them looked at Louis and Elle, giggled, and waved flirtatiously.
“Eyes front, Louis,” she said.
When the crowd was seated, the lights dimmed, and the show began. An amplified voice told them to give it up for Kate the Great, “the most popular hypnotist on the Vegas Strip!” Louis was thinking that she was lucky no one checked the truth of hypnotists’ self-descriptions when Kate the Great glided onstage and his train of thought jumped the track and disappeared into a ravine never to be seen again.
Kate the Great was, well, sex on a stick.
She was older than Elle, true. But any man who’d ever fantasized about an older woman—there may be a few who haven’t, but Louis Wentworth was assuredly not one of them—had been, without knowing it, fantasizing about Kate the Great. She was a bit taller than Elle, and slightly bigger all over. But her figure packed a punch. She wore a red dress, belted to show off how small her waist was and how her hips flared out below and her breasts billowed above. Jet black hair, blood-red lips, ice-blue eyes. Louis had a slightly disturbing vision of himself, standing on the palm of her hand and staring into her eyes as that luscious mouth came closer and closer –
“Pay attention, Louis,” Elle said.
“Yes, darling.” He tended to tune out of the beginning of a hypnosis act—every hypnotist gave the same spiel about hypnosis, have you ever noticed that you can space out when you’re driving or reading etc. etc.?
But Kate the Great didn’t. She was telling a story about how she learned through hypnosis to let go of the false self, the self that was holding her back, and that over her years as a hypnotist she had learned to love herself and then found the love of her life. She beckoned and a fit looking man of about her age bounded onto the stage, bowed on command, and then disappeared.
He looked happy. Louis could imagine why.
Her looks, her personal story, and her low, intimate voice had by now quieted the room. Everyone there—young and old, in-towner and tourist, giggly YA con attender and bored gambler—was riveted by her story. That included Louis. Dimly he thought that the casino had grown awfully quiet.
At the end of her talk, she asked anyone who wanted to experience freedom and fun of hypnosis to join her on stage.
At this point something curious happened to Louis Wentworth. He levitated.
Well, he looked down at his feet. They were not only firmly on the ground but they were busily carrying him toward the stage. He couldn’t feel them, however; he felt himself floating without any volition of his own toward the stage, toward that voice, those ice-blue eyes, those red lips . . . .
He cast a panicky look back at Elle. She looked back at him with a Cheshire Cat smirk and gestured for him to go ahead, and at that point the divorce between his feet and his will became total. Within seconds he had floated into a chair—and at least a dozen other members of the audience had followed him. Now they all sat in a line like a preschool class gazing at the teacher.
Kate surveyed them appraisingly. “Now, how shall we start out?” she mused as if thinking aloud. “Let me see . . . “ She seemed to do eenie-meenie and then pointed one manicured nail at Louis. “Oh, darling, you’ll do. Oh, yes, you will. Come here, you sweet boy.”
Louis floated again, to his feet, and stood in front of her. He was taller than she, but he seemed to be looking up at her from far below, she seemed to be as large as a moon, a planet, a star around which he was orbiting, and every word that came from that red mouth echoed in his mind like a transmission for an advanced civilization. “You are a tasty thing, aren’t you?” she said, looking him up and down. “Where were you when I was single?” She mugged for the crowd. “Don’t answer that, darling, because I know—in high school.” They dutifully laughed.
“Now, what is your name, sugarcake?”
“Louis,” he said. He felt completely natural, as if he were talking to an old friend over coffee in his living room. The strangeness of the situation simply didn’t matter. He just wanted to talk to his friend Kate and tell her anything she wanted to know.
“Okay, Louis,” she said. “Now you’re probably expecting a big long song and dance about how you’re getting sleepy but all you have to do is look into my eyes and take a deep breath and . . . SLEEP!”
“Wake up, Louis! Wake up now!”
With difficulty he opened his eyes, and when he did, he was so confused by what he saw that he closed them again. He wasn’t in the casino showroom; he was back in their suite at the Salpêtrière, and sitting across from him, looking fetching indeed in her hypnotic green Louboutin pumps, was not the powerful older hypnotist he’d been staring at ten seconds ago but his own wife, Elle.
“I said wake up! Open your eyes!”
He came fully awake. “What—what happened?” he said.
“You don’t remember, Louis? Don’t worry, I have a DVD of the show right here in case you need your memory refreshed. You fell right over when my friend Kate pointed a finger at you and you . . . performed quite well as a subject. You’ll enjoy the show, especially the part where you became a dog and jumped off the stage into the audience. Some of your little fans from the YA book con were very fascinated by your performance.”
Suddenly he blushed red.
“Oh, Louis, darling, don’t worry,” she said. “You are the most marvelous man in the world and I adore you. But I sometimes like to have a little fun with you. Would you like to have fun?”
“Well then look at me. Look at me! Deeper, Louis, that’s right, look at me!”
“Sit up darling! Look at me! I want you to meet someone.”
Meet someone? He looked around the suite. There was only Elle and himself present. Who could she mean?
“Louis, there are things you don’t know about me,” she was saying. Her voice, as so often, floated in and out of his consciousness, more important in some way than his own thoughts, which grew quieter and quieter as he listened to her. “For one thing,” she said, “I have a twin sister. Look, Louis, this is my sister Belle!”
He looked at her again and there were—two Elles? There were! Elle had a twin? She did! Could . . . could Louis’s life get ANY sexier? He literally couldn’t tell them apart—two gorgeous women, alike down to the dirty-blonde hair, the black lacy bra, the green hypnotic heels, both looking at him like hungry teenagers looking at an ice-cream sundae.
“Hello, Belle,” he said. “I am VERY pleased to meet you.”
Belle (or Elle, Louis was very confused) gave him a very sexy smile. On your feet!” she said. “Get those clothes off!” He stripped without a thought. She was leaning back at her ease, fully dressed in the same filmy white blouse and black bra Elle was wearing. He stood before her naked, and realized he had never felt so powerless in his life—not one but two hypnotic women had decided to take charge of him.
It was not, however, an altogether bad feeling.
“My shoes need attention, Louis. NOW!” said Belle.
With an indistinct growl in the back of his throat, the naked Louis dropped to the floor and, like a snake on its belly, wriggled over to her feet, which he began to kiss and lick as frantically as if he’d been told that foot-kissing was being outlawed at midnight. While he kissed her left foot, he felt her casually resting the right foot, in its 5″ heel, on his back. “Lower, little man,” her voice said. “Lower.”
He was trying to press himself through the floor when she said, “Turn over, Louis.” He did. “Lie there and please me,” she added. Still dressed in her skirt and hose, she lowered herself onto his face. “Go ahead, slave,” she purred, and he began to gently explore her with his tongue. He began slowly, gently, with long smooth strokes of his tongue, then gradually moved into shorter ones, then into spelling out the word O-B-E-Y. He could tell from her breathing, and the tightness by which she trapped his head between her thighs, that she was enjoying it.
Suddenly Louis gasped. He had been so absorbed in his task that he had forgotten that he was addressing only one half of a pair of twins. He felt a warm mouth descend over his erect cock, and a talented tongue teasing him, running up and down the shaft and swirling around the head. “Elle!” he groaned.
“Turn over!” said Elle, or Belle, or both. Louis did, and found himself trapped tightly between the identical, spectacular bodies of Elle and her sister. One of them—he’d lost track—kissed him on the mouth while the other, pressed against him from the rear, reached across his body, took his cock in her hand, and began to stroke it just enough to keep him confused and breathless.
“Suck this,” said the twin he had been kissing, probing his mouth with her finger. “Open up, bitch. Suck it! I’m fucking your mouth!”
From behind, the other twin’s voice said, “I’m fucking you from behind.” She looped a muscular leg, still in the green shoe, over him, pressed herself to his ass, and stoked his cock faster.
“We own you,” said one voice.
“You can’t resist us,” said the other.
“Give it up, Louis, you’re our bitch. COME NOW!”
After an unknown time, he woke again, to find himself on the rug in front of the 50″ TV. Someone had thrown a blanket over him while she slept. He looked across the room to see Elle, her face without makeup and her hair damp from the shower, wearing a fleecy hotel bathrobe and leafing meditatively through a Nordstrom’s catalogue.
“Elle?” he said.
“Yes, darling,” she said. “Were you expecting Katniss Everdeen?”
“Where is Belle?”
She gave a throaty laugh. “Louis, Belle had to—had to go.”
“Will she be back later?”
“You’d like that, wouldn’t you? Maybe. Someday. If you are a very good boy. Now get ready for bed. We have a big day tomorrow.”
The “big day” was a panel at the YA Con on “Strong female heroes.” To tell the truth, Louis had been a big nervous about it. This was his first year as a guest at the Con, and he was on a panel with two other authors who were not only long-timers but were also female themselves. He secretly wondered whether one of them—or someone in the audience for that matter—might not rise up and shout, “That one! He’s an impostor! Get him!” – leaving him no choice but an ignominious flight before the angry mob of teenagers could render him limb from fraudulent limb.
But the atmosphere was not chilly at all. To begin with, his two fellow panelists were more than friendly. (In fact, one of them, a cheerful, cherubic, motherly type from somewhere on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, confessed that she was a “huge fan” of the Hypnoteen books, thereby setting Louis at ease but earning a slight scowl from Elle.) The questions from the audience were also friendly, and Louis’s aw-shucks modest manner clearly lost him no fans and probably won him a few.
The audience was the curious thing about the event. Louis had decided not to think too much about it, because it might distract him—but for some reason, the young girls who made up the bulk of the audience were . . . well . . . invisible. He looked out from the dais and saw a room full of cellphones and copies of the Hypnoteen books floating unsupported above the chairs, while a babble of girlish, giggling voices seemed to come out of the empty air.
It really was puzzling, but again Louis thought he shouldn’t focus on it too much. He decided he would ask Elle about it later.
It was the kind of thing she understood.
After he had signed the last book and thanked the last invisible guest, he also thanked the publicist who had arranged his appearance. Again he had to decline her invitation to lunch. It was just as well, probably, because while he could see her, she was looking a bit translucent and he really couldn’t be sure that she wouldn’t just fade into invisibility during lunch—or, even worse, that the lunch itself would appear in the air as it glided down her transparent gullet to her invisible gut.
“Louis and I have a date with the Forum Shops at Caesars,” Elle told her. “There are 14 women’s fashion footwear shops there. I didn’t know that but Louis counted them. He’s a dear boy but he is rather a bore in the way he insists on taking me shopping. But I bear up bravely. Thank you for all the hospitality, dear. And—“ here she fixed the young publishing employee with her most irresistible hypnodomme stare—“you WILL call me about that business we discussed.” The girl just stared at her until Elle said, “Close your mouth and nod your head, darling, and then say goodbye.”
Once they were alone, Louis said, “Come on, Elle, those shoes won’t try themselves on.”
“One second, dear boy,” she answered. She reached into her purse and pulled out a leather-bound daybook and a gold ballpoint pen Louis had recently insisted she accept as a “just because you’re you” gift. She opened the “To-Do” list and found:
- Caesar’s mall
- Prada dress
She drew a line under those items and wrote a new entry:
- TWIN FANTASY—Call Justine.