Hypnotized and Humiliated
By Karen Singer
Marian looked over her crew of workers the next morning. Everything appeared to be back to normal again. Finally! She had gotten a few whispered comments about wishing that Phillip could have been left in his humiliating state, but that was it. She still hadn’t gotten around to checking on how Phillip could have had anything to do with the former employees of her department getting fired, but every last woman in the room had confirmed it, so she believed it. Now that Phillip was no longer hypnotized, she wasn’t as concerned over that issue. But she was still keeping a close eye on him… as well as what went on between him and everybody else.
When her morning break time came, Vivian was among the women who was at the table with her.
“Can I ask you a question about the hypnotism thing?” Vivian asked her.
Marian shrugged, “Sure, I guess.”
“I noticed that each time you hypnotized him, you took a few minutes to try to make his trance go deeper. But in the stage shows I’ve seen, they never do that, but the people still do what the hypnotist wanted. Why did you do that?”
“Well, to be honest,” Marian replied, “I probably didn’t need to. But taking the time to make them go deeper makes the suggestions I give stick that much firmer. In Phillip’s case, I guess I did it because what I was doing was more than a bit out of the usual routines I used to do on stage.”
Vivian nodded as she thought about that. “I guess it makes sense. And how about the fact that I noticed that each time you told him to do something, you linked it to him feeling anxious. Why not just tell him to suck his thumb and hold the doll? Why bother with the rest?”
Marian was very surprised at the question. “You noticed that?”
Vivian nodded. “So how come?”
“Well, it’s kind of for the same reason. If you can give the subject a situation or a story line that they can identify with and understand then they can react to that situation that much clearer. Also by reinforcing the suggestions with something that goes with their emotions, then again, it sticks that much more firmly with them. And again, in Phillip’s case, I’m afraid I really didn’t need to do that either.”
“Because Phillip, it seems, is one of those people who go under really easily, and he goes immediately into a very deep trance. I’m afraid I was kind of surprised at that.”
“How do you know how deep they’re going?” Vivian asked.
Marian shook her head trying to find a good answer. “It’s difficult. Mostly it just takes a lot of experience and watching for some very subtle clues. And the big problem is that those clues can be different with each person. But the main thing is… just plain old experience.”
Vivian nodded thoughtfully. “Thanks,” she replied as she considered the things that Marian had told her. She was silent though the rest of the break period, only half-listening to the conversation that revolved around children and family… and not Phillip or hypnotism. Her mind was mostly occupied with thinking through the little information that Marian had just given her… and the next steps she needed to take.
“Hey Rex,” Phillip replied as he sat down at the lunch table with some of his friends.
“Hey, we missed you yesterday,” Rex mentioned.
“You did?” Phillip was somewhat surprised. “I was here… wasn’t I?”
“Nope! How can you not remember where you went for lunch yesterday?”
Phillip blinked. He realized that he didn’t remember being here at lunch yesterday at all. He didn’t remember being anywhere for lunch yesterday. In fact, most of the day seemed to be missing from his brain. “I wonder where I was?” he replied half-jokingly as he picked up the hamburger he had just bought and started eating it.
“Hey,” Rex started with his mouth full of food, “what was that business I heard about you running through the building yesterday with your thumb in your mouth and carrying a doll?”
“Say what?” Phillip asked, totally shocked. “Where did you hear something like that?”
“From a few people actually.”
Phillip shook his head. “It’s the first I’ve heard of it! I wonder who would start a weird rumor like that?”
“Heaven only knows!” Rex replied.
Vivian usually hurried out the door the moment quitting time came. She went all the way downstairs with the other girls the very moment they were all allowed to leave as she usually did. Phillip, she knew, would follow a few moments later. He didn’t usually rush the way everyone else did. But once Vivian got downstairs and out of the elevator, she called a quick goodbye to everyone and headed a different direction.
She stopped a short distance away from the elevators where she could see everyone who got off them. Her wait was short. Two minutes later, she saw Phillip get out of one of the elevators. She was slightly surprised to see him talking with one of the other guys as if he knew him. She followed as the two of them headed for the doors leading outside. No surprise, they headed for the parking lot. It was there that they waved to each other and went their separate ways.
Vivian continued to follow Phillip to see what car he was driving… a small blue Ford Focus. She ran for her car, which fortunately wasn’t all that far away. But could she catch him? She desperately drove around the parking lot toward the exit and just caught sight of his car disappearing down the road. As fast as she was able, she chased after him. Where was he? Far ahead, she thought she saw a blue car turning to the right. The cars in front of her were going maddeningly slowly. She turned at the street where she thought she had seen his car… only to catch a glimpse of a blue car making a left turn far ahead. She stepped on the gas, going far faster than she was comfortable with and made the same left turn.
This time, she saw the blue car much clearer… and she was fairly certain it was Phillip’s car. It turned off to the right and she soon realized that he had pulled into a fast food restaurant along the road. She pulled into the parking lot and drove right past him since he was in the line for the drive-thru window. But she had quickly verified that it was Phillip sitting in the car. Whew! At least she was following the right car! She pulled around to the other side of the parking lot and waited for him to leave. When she followed him out of the parking lot, she had a much easier time of it. It wasn’t long before she saw him turning again, straight into an apartment project… certainly not a new one, but it looked a whole lot better than the one she lived in. She continued to follow him at a distance. A few minutes later, she saw him park his car and climb the cement steps up to the second floor. She watched and took careful note of which door he entered. “Got’cha!” she declared.
She got out of her car and climbed the stairs and tried to figure out what kind of apartment he lived in. From all appearances, it looked like just a one bedroom place. She went downstairs and around the back of the building to check it from that angle. But nothing gave her any indications that it was more than that. She looked at where he had parked his car. His apartment number was painted on the curb in front of the car. She quickly noted the numbers on the parking spaces next to his car. All different. So he had the only parking place. Based on that, she was guessing he lived alone. At least it looked that way.
With that bit of information, she turned her car around and headed back to her own apartment, which was less than a ten minute drive from where he lived. Now she just had to figure out her next step!
It was nearly nine o’clock in the evening when someone knocked on Phillip’s door. Cursing slightly because they were interrupting the movie he had been watching, he hurried to the door and opened it… and was shocked to see Vivian! “Vivian!” he said, totally surprised to see her.
Vivian didn’t wait a single second. “Phillip likes to suck his thumb!” she said quickly, and waited to see him drop immediately into a trance. Except… that he didn’t.
“What?” Phillip asked, now taken by a second surprise. “Vivian, what are you doing here?”
In desperation, Vivian tried it again. “Phillip likes to suck his thumb!”
“Vivian,” Phillip said, now becoming perturbed. “What the heck are you trying to do? I don’t suck my thumb! Are you trying to malign me somehow?” His anger was quickly growing.
If frustration, Vivian growled to herself and took off running. It didn’t work! Why? She could hear him calling after her, but she paid him no attention. Why hadn’t it worked? Cursing, she hurried to her car and drove even faster straight home.
“Damn!” She had done it now. Screwed everything! Why hadn’t he dropped into the trance? He was supposed to! Still cursing, she pulled up the video again to watch it… again and again and again – all the while berating herself for somehow screwing everything up. But she had really thought it would work!
About the tenth time viewing the video again, something tiny caught her attention. She stopped the video and played that section again… then again… then again. Was that it? Was that the key? It was one tiny word that Marian had said just before the trigger phrase. She had said, “Whenever you hear ‘me’ say…” Was it possible that Phillip had taken that one word so literally? She had no way of knowing. And because of that, it looked like only Marian could put him into a trance and she was even further screwed! Only Marian held control over him… and nobody else. At least not with that trigger phrase, and she didn’t know enough about hypnotism to even attempt to hypnotize anyone.
In desperation and frustration, she played the video one more time, knowing that what she wanted to do was now out the window. And as the video reached that section one more time and she listened to it again, a tiny possibility occurred to her. Was it possible? It didn’t really seem likely. But… maybe. And not only that, if it didn’t work, would she be in any worse trouble? Not as far as she could see.
Grasping at straws, she ran back out of her apartment and out to her car. A few minutes later she knocked on Phillip’s door once again, scared out of her wits at what might happen. The moment his door opened and she could see him clearly, she pushed the button on her phone to play that one piece of the video again… with the volume turned up so he could easily hear it. The surrounding area was filled with the sound of that one brief passage where Marian’s voice said, “Phillip likes to suck his thumb!” And Vivian was surprised to see that Phillip reacted as if someone had just shot him. He immediately stuck his thumb in his mouth and stood in the doorway with his eyes closed as if he was sound asleep. Vivian had no doubt he was in a trance this time. No doubt at all. “Got’cha!” she said quietly but triumphantly as she turned the video off.
But now he was standing in the doorway blocking it… to all appearances sound asleep on his feet. “Phillip,” she said somewhat sternly, “Go back inside and sit down!” She was actually surprised to see him open his eyes and turn around and walk away. She followed and closed the door behind her. She watched as he sat in one of his living room chairs with his thumb still firmly in his mouth. The TV was showing some action hero movie that she cared nothing about. She found the remote control and turned the annoying thing off. Now what?
“Phillip,” she told him, “I want you to stay right there and sleep till I wake you.” There was no reaction from him other than his eyes closing. She stared for a moment at his thumb in his mouth, and the sight of it sent a tingle through her that she hadn’t expected. He was soundly in a trance. She had done it! Whew!
Knowing… or hoping… that he would stay right where he was, sound asleep, she decided to investigate his apartment. It was certainly bigger and better looking than hers. Which meant that he probably made more money than she did. Men! She was glad to note that he did live alone. That made things a lot easier and a lot less worrisome. She didn’t know what she would have done if he lived with someone else.
She headed first for the one place that held most of her interest in her own apartment – his bedroom closet. Entering his bedroom, she looked around and didn’t see any clothes out anywhere. Her own bedroom had two long clothing racks stuffed with clothes because she couldn’t get anything else into her closet. She opened his closet. There were clothes in there – men’s clothes of course – but the closet wasn’t all that full like hers was. What was wrong with him? She lived to buy clothes! She spent every dime she could on new clothes, and more often than not, spent money she knew she shouldn’t! Men! They just didn’t have any appreciation for the better things in life! Well, she now had a good mind to change all that for him… whether he liked it or not. She giggled slightly. Most likely, he wouldn’t like it!
She spent a few more minutes looking around his apartment. Not a lot of decorations, that was for sure. Basically, it looked like most of the bachelor pads of some of the guys she had dated. Typical! Totally typical!
She went back to where he was still sleeping and sucking his thumb. It was time now to let him know who was boss! None of this not remembering anything crap. She wanted him to know who was in charge here! “Phillip, wake up now!” she ordered.
Phillip bolted awake and his thumb jerked out of his mouth. “What?” He saw Vivian standing over him. “What are you doing here?” he asked angrily. “What the hell happened?”
Vivian was shocked and frightened. She hadn’t meant to wake him up completely, she just wanted him to open his eyes and stay in his trance. He was quickly getting up from the couch. She feared for her life just then. “Phillip likes to suck his thumb!” she shouted in desperation, trying to send him back into his trance. But as before, saying it did nothing. She ran from him!
“What the hell is going on?” he demanded as he started after her.
As quickly as she could, she grabbed her phone and started the video playing again. In moments it got to the part where Marian had put him into the trance and she stopped and held it up toward him as if to ward him off. The volume was still turned up and the sound reached his ears loud and clear… stopping him in his tracks as the fatal trigger words were spoken. Vivian watched as magically, Phillip again stuck his thumb in his mouth, closed his eyes and dropped into a deep trance… standing right in front of her.
She breathed a desperate sigh of relief. That was close! She let the video keep playing all through the part where Marian had deepened his trance, hoping it would help. She wasn’t experienced at all with this so she had no way of knowing if it did anything at all. But at least his thumb stayed in his mouth and his eyes stayed closed as if he was sound asleep. With her heart still hammering, she turned the recording off again. “Phillip,” she said to him, trying to calm her voice, “go sit down again.” She was very pleased to watch him open his eyes and go back to the same chair and sit down. “Sleep till I wake you again,” she told him… and watched as his eyes once again closed.
One thing she knew for sure. She had to fix things now so that he would go into a trance at her voice… and not Marian’s! That was going to be very important. She didn’t want to have to keep playing that dumb video each time. Besides, why should Marian be able to control him? Maybe she could even fix him so that Marian could never control him again! That would be helpful since Marian had all those strange ideas about not being too harsh on the guy. And she certainly didn’t want Marian to be able to undo anything she did with him. With those thoughts on her mind, she sat in one of his other chairs to try to figure things out… while she kept a strict watch on him.
When she thought she was ready, she stood up to stand over him. Praying she would get it all right and that it would all work, she cautiously said to him, “Phillip, I want you to stay deep in your trance but open your eyes and listen carefully to me.” She was very pleased to see him open his eyes and look at her. There was no fear there, just his eyes looking at her. Good. She hoped.
“Phillip,” she said, “from now on, when I say, ‘Phillip likes to suck…” And she stopped herself. Why use exactly the same phrase Marian had used? Besides, she had a few things in mind for him later that would make a small change in that phrase much more appropriate. “Forget that,” she said quickly. After a brief moment of thought, she started again. “Phillip, from now on, whenever you hear ‘me’ say, ‘Phyllis sucks her thumb,’ you will immediately put your thumb in your mouth, suck on it, and drop into the deepest trance possible. Sucking your thumb like a baby will make you feel very, very relaxed. As you continue to suck on it, it will help you go into a deeper and deeper trance.” She hoped she had gotten that part right.
Now to try to fix the Marian thing. “Phillip,” she said, “from now on, whenever you hear Marian’s voice say, ‘Phillip likes to suck his thumb,’ you will no longer go into any kind of a trance at all. In fact, from now on, Marian can no longer hypnotize you in any way. As of now, it is impossible for Marian to ever hypnotize you again. But you will always go into your trance immediately whenever you hear ‘me’ say, ‘Phyllis sucks her thumb.’”
She had no way of knowing if any of that would work, but it was all she could think of to try to fix that situation. She was tempted to wake him fully now to test putting him back into a trance, but she decided a few other things might be advisable to tell him first. “Phillip,” she said, “when I wake you up, you will not be surprised at all to see me. You will not be angry in any way with me. In fact, you will wake up knowing that you want me to be here with you. You will be happy to have me here and will be very interested in listening to anything I tell you.”
Was that enough? Would all her other suggestions take affect? There was only one way to find out. “Phillip, I’m going to count down from three to one now. When I get to one, you will come fully awake. Remember, you won’t be surprised to see me and will be very happy to listen to anything I have to say.” She took a breath to steady herself. The big test was about to start. “Three… two… one!”
Phillip opened his eyes. “Vivian,” he said. “It’s good to see you.”
Vivian didn’t know if she wanted to scream her excitement, or just laugh a bit. She forced herself to do neither. “Hi Phillip,” she said. “You’re looking good tonight.” Which was pretty much true. Phillip was a good looking guy – for sure.
“Thanks,” Phillip replied. “So are you.”
Vivian actually felt herself blushing. Why hadn’t any woman hooked up with him yet? “Phillip,” she said, “I’d like to play a recording for you. Will you listen to it for a minute?”
“Sure,” Phillip replied enthusiastically. “I’d love to hear it.”
Vivian found the start of the video again. She didn’t show it to him, she only played it so he could hear the sound. Before he had a chance to ask anything about it, Marian’s voice uttered the fatal trigger words. She watched him closely as his face seemed to contort in outrage. She quickly turned the video off. Obviously it had no effect on him anymore.
“What the heck is this?” he asked angrily. “What was that all about? Was that Marian’s voice? Who was she talking to?”
Before things could get out of hand, Vivian quickly said, “Phyllis sucks her thumb!” She watched as he immediately put his thumb back into his mouth and again dropped into a trance. She was almost awed at the sight. She had done it! She couldn’t help herself, she crowed loudly with laughter as the poor sap in front of her sat sucking his thumb like an infant. She had done it! Phillip was all hers now to play with to her hearts content… and there was nothing at all that Marian could do about it. She screamed her delight once again!
But now what was she going to do with him? Her big plan for tonight had been to just see if she could manage to hypnotize him and that was it. That first part had taken a bit more than she figured it would. But now that she had him… in her power, so to speak, what should she do with him? Something humiliating, that was a must! The jerk! Getting her friends fired so he could move into their jobs! Yeah, no doubt he deserved everything she would ever do to him!
But she still needed something to make him do. Something to start out with. Something… small but noticeable. Something… She watched him sucking his thumb so peacefully. And the idea hit her. Perfect! But… she quickly realized that what she originally intended wasn’t going to be advisable. She took a few minutes to revise her idea. She had originally been thinking that she wanted him to be very aware of who was in charge of him now, but she quickly decided to delay that information a little bit. She had a feeling that springing something like that on him too soon might be a bad idea. Besides, she needed some time to learn more and experiment a bit more with him first. But this idea, this idea should work perfectly!
She finally said, “Phillip, open your eyes and listen to me.” She was rewarded by his immediate but small response. “Phillip, tomorrow, when you go to work….”