First I’d like to say a very big thank you to all of you who have stayed with me and been enjoying my writing. I really appreciate it!!!
Later today, I’ll be leaving on vacation. Which means that there will be no story updates all next week. Things will resume just as soon as I get back.
Sometime shortly after I return from my vacation, I’m going to have another story available for anyone who’s interested. I’ll let you know about it more later.
In the meantime, go try and have a little fun. Enjoy yourselves!
By Karen Singer
Chapter 19 (Part 1 of 2)
It was nearly dinner time, but Roger was sitting at the table drinking coffee, while Janice was carefully going over the estimate he had prepared for Elaine and Frank Whittaker. Since Janice had gotten home a little while ago, she had made no move toward preparing anything to eat. Carol had taken off with his car earlier in the day to visit her friends, and Roger hadn’t seen or heard from her since. Having the house to himself all day, with nothing to do, had been a wonderful experience. He had spent much of it taking the strain off of his aching feet by napping on the couch. If only Janice would let him sleep on the couch like that every night… minus the stupid shoes of course.
“Once again this appears to be remarkably complete,” Janice commented as she looked through his materials list that was on a separate sheet than the one the Whittakers would get.
“Thank you,” Roger replied.
“I’m only concerned that our estimate may come in higher than whatever other estimates Mrs. Whittaker may receive.”
“I don’t think you’ll have anything to worry about there,” Roger replied. “I work alone. Anyone else will have a crew of at least three or four guys that have to be paid. And since I’m not a licensed contractor, the rates I used for my fees aren’t as high as what the others would charge.”
Janice nodded. “But are your rates high enough then?”
Roger considered that. “I have no way of knowing. I think they’re… fair. Especially since this little business is just getting started.”
Janice nodded. “Sounds good,” she said as she dropped the paperwork on the table. She was tired. It has been a very long day and a lot of driving. And now she had this new task to think about that she had taken from Susan Wu. An interesting… but troubling task. Still, it could possibly prove to be very lucrative, and it wasn’t all that much different than things she had done many times in the past.
She watched as Roger took another sip from his coffee. “Mr. Brinkley, I’m very tired. I’m tired and I have a lot I still need to accomplish tonight. Since Carol is having dinner with her friend, and since I’m too tired to cook, I’d like you to go get dinner for us.” She smiled. “Even though Carol isn’t here, Burger King or anything else you may like will be fine. You can simply get me some form of chicken. Don’t bother getting me anything to drink, I’ll make coffee. Get yourself anything you like, just bring it all back here to eat.”
Roger was surprised. “You want me to go get dinner?”
“Isn’t that what I just said?” Janice asked with more than a bit of irritation.
“Sure,” Roger replied quickly. “No problem.” He quickly got up from the table and realized something. “Uh… Mrs. Stokley, is there any chance I can take these shoes off before I go? I don’t think I can drive in them.”
“Learn, Mr. Brinkley!” Janice ordered in no uncertain terms. The way she was feeling just then, even a little complaining about anything was the last thing she needed.
“Uh… sorry, Mrs. Stokley,” Roger said quickly, before hurrying away as fast as his heels would let him.
For some unknown reason, Roger found that going down a flight of stairs was much more difficult in high heels than going up the steps. Fortunately, there were only a few steps leading down from the kitchen to the garage. He got into the new Cadillac and was immediately aware of how different the heels on his feet were for working the pedals. He had to experiment a bit before he even tried to start the car. But having little choice, he was soon slowly backing out of the garage… very much aware of how difficult it was going to be to press the gas pedal very far in order to get any kind of decent speed out of the car. He was two minutes out of his driveway before he figured out that he had to put the overly high heel to the side of the gas pedal. Things went much easier after that.
Janice sat at the table and stared blankly at the papers in front of her. Most likely, she would deliver the estimate to the Whittakers herself… tomorrow if she had the time. She really was a bit weary, but that was just from all the driving she had done. It had been a strange day. On the trip home, she had tried to think about the task Susan Wu had given her… but without studying the folder Susan had given her first, she didn’t have enough information to even start planning what she needed to do.
But as much as she wanted to think about that, her mind instead kept going back to Roger… and his little carpentry business. And on the way home, she had come up with a wonderful idea for his business card. Of course, he wouldn’t like it very much… yet. But she had a feeling that it would work out quite well for him in the long-run.
But tonight, as she had told him earlier, she had a lot to do. And all of it concerned him. She had already spent a lot of time planning and making notes on what needed to happen. And she needed to start it tonight. Unfortunately. Time could no longer be wasted.
Roger pulled into the garage and pushed the button to close the door behind him. He had gone to Burger King as she suggested… mostly because he could just go through the drive-thru and not have to worry about anyone seeing the silly heels on his feet. He grabbed the bag of food and carried it into the house… where Janice was still sitting at the kitchen table.
“That didn’t take long,” Janice noted as he came in and set the bag on the table for her.
“There were no cars ahead of me, so I didn’t have to wait,” Roger replied.
Janice said nothing. Instead she got up from her seat and poured herself a fresh cup of coffee. Then she stared at Roger for a moment. “Do you want a refill on your coffee?” she asked, “or did you get yourself a drink with your meal?”
Was she going to let him sit at the table to eat for once? “Um… I bought a drink… but… if there’s any chance I can sit at the table to eat…”
“Bring me your cup,” Janice replied.
Roger grabbed the coffee cup he had been drinking from earlier and held it while she poured fresh coffee into it. A minute later, they were both sitting at the table eating their dinner. Roger remained as quiet as possible while he ate so as not to say anything that might upset her. Eating at the table was far better than eating from a dog bowl on the floor!
“Would it surprise you, Mr. Brinkley,” Janice said as she was nearing finishing her meal of chicken strips, “to know that I’m married?”
Roger’s head suddenly went spinning at that concept.
Janice smiled. “I can see that it does. But why else would I use the term ‘Misses’ in front of my name? Not only that, but where do you think Carol came from? No, I am definitely married. Although, to be honest, it is a marriage in name only. Any judge in the country would grant me an immediate divorce… if I decided to simply ask.”
Roger didn’t know what to think. Her hatred of all men was obvious! “So… was he mean to you?” Roger asked hesitantly.
Janice considered that question. “In a way,” she finally replied. “My husband was vice president in charge of a large bank in Mobile, Alabama. He considered himself to be a very smart man… something he lauded over me constantly. I worked under him in the investment department for five years. I learned a lot from him… and awful lot! I know more about banking and investing now than you could possibly believe.”
“So… what happened?”
Janice smiled. “As you’ve aptly noted, I do not like men, Mr. Brinkley. I won’t go into the whys of that tonight, but I do have many good reasons for that. I’m afraid I married Thomas for reasons other than love… although he never had the first inkling about that. I married him in order to learn from him and to gain a better position within the banking community.”
“So… where is he now?” Roger asked.
“In time, Mr. Brinkley. Let me finish what I have to say first.”
Roger only nodded. He was now all ears as to what this demented woman might tell him.
“As I said a minute ago, Thomas considered himself to be a very smart man. A genius! And… I suppose he was… to an extent. I put up with his ego for years as I did everything I could to learn what he knew. And in the process, Carol was born… the absolute light of my life! I can’t tell you what a joy she is to me.”
All Roger could think about as far as Carol was concerned, was what a monster she was… along with the murderous things he’d like to do to her.
“But I digress,” Janice continued. “I didn’t intend to talk about Carol right now. I was telling you about my husband.” She took another sip from her coffee. “Thomas Stokley was a bastard! A real, true bastard in every sense of the word! Make no mistakes about that. Perhaps he didn’t hit me, or force me to do unthinkable things, but he was a total bastard never the less! He abused me with words instead of physically. For years I had to put up with him telling me how totally stupid I was while he was so superiorly intelligent. He took great delight in hounding me with it constantly. I won’t say more, other than that I put up with it for a very long time, only so that I could continue to learn more about the banking industry. And learn I did, Mr. Brinkley. I learned everything I possibly could!”
“So… what happened?” Roger chanced asking.
Janice nodded. “A fair question, and the real point of what I wanted to talk with you about. Mr. Brinkley, you’ve had a small taste of my methods for controlling men… brainwashing to be honest. A skill that I’ve grown rather adept at over the years. My husband was my very first victim… and by no means… my last.”
Roger was suddenly shocked… but he quickly realized that he shouldn’t be.
“As with any skill,” Janice continued, “you must learn from your mistakes. I made a lot of mistakes with Thomas I’m afraid. A lot!”
“So… what happened?” Roger asked cautiously.
Janice smiled. “The doctors proclaimed that he had a brain aneurism. But that’s not quite correct… or if he did, then I think you can guess what most likely caused it. I’m afraid my methods were rather a bit too crude back then. That, and coupled with my lack of knowledge and experience, let’s just say I went a little too far. Actually, more than a bit too far. Since then, Thomas has been in a facility for brain-dead people… who haven’t died yet. There is nothing wrong physically with him at all. But his brain barely functions anymore. I guess he’s not quite brain-dead… but close enough that they treat him that way.”
Roger was horrified and could only stare at her in shock.
“I guess he was as close as I’ve ever come to actually killing someone. And I really am very glad that he didn’t die.” She smiled at Roger for a moment. “After lauding over me for so many years how smart he was and how stupid I was, I guess he’s not so smart anymore!”
Roger couldn’t reply. He could only shake his head… slightly.
“But before I went that far with him,” Janice continued. “I had him steal three million dollars from the bank for me. Two days later, I was trying to fix things so he couldn’t tell anyone I had made him do it… and I’m afraid I went too far with him. I’m afraid the authorities were very perturbed at his sudden aneurism. Especially since the money was never found.”
Janice picked up her coffee cup and was somewhat frustrated to find it empty. “But he was my first, Mr. Brinkley,” she said as she got up from the table to refill her cup. “I’m happy to say that I’ve learned a great deal about my little hobby since then.”
Roger wasn’t sure he wanted to hear any more about her “hobby.”
Janice poured herself a fresh cup of coffee, then leaned back against the kitchen counter. “In the ensuing years, I’ve perfected the art of tying a man’s mind up in knots. And lately, I’ve even been getting quite creative with it.” She smiled. “I’m afraid my last victim now firmly believes he is a toad. He has barely any memory of his human life anymore, and doesn’t even have the capacity to want to attain it again. He firmly believes he is a toad and will only be a toad… and he behaves as much like a toad as the facility he is in will permit. All he does now, is to sit around in the insane asylum where he lives, and he spends his days watching for flies he can catch with his tongue and then eat them.” She smiled. “I gave him a goal of fifty flies. It is the only way he can count… and the only thing he does count… and he never forgets how many flies he’s eaten. Whenever… if ever… he gets to fifty, then he will immediately experience a rather strong and wonderful sexual orgasm… and orgasm he wants very badly. But once he’s experienced it, then his count goes back to zero, and he begins all over again. He is doomed to remain a toad like that for the rest of his days.”
Roger was totally horrified.
“He was the first toad I’ve done, and I think he came out rather well. He used to be a rather fat old investment broker, but after a few days with me… and of course, converting a few million dollars of his investor’s money into cash for me, he is now no longer concerned with things like clients, or money, or anything else from his old life. He is only concerned with catching flies with his tongue.”
Roger remained speechless… and horrified.
“Most of my other victims are in similar positions,” Janice continued. “Except that all the other ones I got creative with I turned into bugs of some sort instead… bugs that I can step on! But rest assured, not one of them is capable any longer of being human in the least.”
Roger didn’t know why the words came out of his mouth, but the words were what his fear was centered around. “And why are you telling me this?”
“An excellent question, Mr. Brinkley. I’m telling you this because it’s something I just want you to think about… for now.”
It was the “for now” part that caught most of Roger’s attention. “For now?”
“Put it this way… sleep and obey, Mr. Brinkley, sleep and obey. Sleep and obey, Mr. Brinkley, sleep and obey.”
Roger’s head went spinning again. He had no chance to even think about fighting the conditioning she had already done with him. Not that he even had time to think about fighting it. There was no time to think about it because she had taken him by surprise and so fast.