They said they’d wanted a research assistant, no experience required, an exciting and unique opportunity. Her friends said she should go for it, what was there to lose?
It was just her and a handful of others trying for the role, but already she felt her heart sinking; she never got picked for things like this, not when there was competition. She was fairly glum about the whole thing as she resigned herself to being turned down in favour of someone else.
They ran her and the others through some tests. They were some fairly standard questions, with the occasional rather odd one popping up here or there. She answered as best she could however, looking around at the others and assuming they were answering much better.
She was very surprised when, almost immediately after handing her test over, she was approached by the people who were running the whole process.They said she was perfect for the role, asked whether she could start immediately. She was just so overwhelmed she couldn’t help but say yes, the excitement bubbling up inside her. First thing Monday, they said; she told them she’d be there.
Her friends didn’t see much of her after that, not for several weeks. When they finally did, they couldn’t help but think that something had changed about her. She looked different, she was acting different; it was odd.
They asked her what she’d had to do, but she just giggled. That was odd, because giggling had never really been something she’d done before, but now she couldn’t really stop herself. Flicking her hair and fluttering her eyelashes as she happily tittered through any questioning.
They didn’t know about the seductive, compelling voice bouncing around inside her head; a head now much emptied of harmful and distracting thoughts. They didn’t know about the commands now deeply ingrained into her, so deep she didn’t even have to think about them: “Be a good girl”, “Giggle, don’t think”, “You are a pretty ornament, make yourself noticeable” over and over and over again.
Her friends hadn’t been around when she, limp, had been carefully strapped into place, being fitted with with headphones and a blindfold, having a quietly buzzing toy gently slid into her to keep her barely-conscious mind scattered and then gradually broken down and reprogrammed.
They hadn’t seen her stir weakly and feebly struggle against the straps before visibly giving up and letting it overwhelm her, moaning helplessly as her brain was wiped clean and overwritten. They couldn’t have known how she had been repeatedly tested for compliance by being taken by the research staff while breathlessly proclaiming what a good girl she was now before being strapped back into place.
Her friends had no idea. They just knew that she was different, and probably wouldn’t ever be the same again. Somehow though, they just couldn’t bring themselves to mind much.