“Welcome, dear Doctor, to my lair!"
The evil Lady Beguiler flung open the door to her evil lair with a flourish. The lair was in a large basement deep, deep under the city streets. It was far from curious prying eyes and so secluded that none would be able to hear the screams of their future prisoner. It was a perfect place to hold a kidnapping victim.
Dr Dormir, the Lady’s accomplice, looked around the cavernous lair in wonder. “Wherever did you find this place?” he asked, awestruck.
Lady Beguiler smirked. “I did some exploring in the city. Do you want to hear the best part? It’s right under her nose.” She cackled with glee at this.
Dr Dormir joined her in villainous laughter. They had been planning against that damned do-gooder reporter Lizzy Lampost for months and now they were about to finally have her in their clutches. They were ecstatic. What ne’er- do-well could resist a good villainous laugh under these circumstances?
Lady Beguiler proudly swept down the lair staircase and deeper into the dark basement below. Dr Dormir followed eagerly. They eventually reached a small alcove. Lady Beguiler reached into a desk there and took out a thick notebook full of writing.
“These, Doctor, are my notes on Miss Lizzy Lampost.” She said the dreaded name with a sneer. “Just as you’ve requested, I’ve been compiling extensive research on her- her fears, her desires, her thoughts, her behaviors- anything that might help us understand her or what makes her tick. We can use this information to be extra...persuasive when the time comes.”
“Indeed,’ said the doctor, pleased. “I’ve compiled some of my own records right here.” He patted a manilla folder he was carrying. “I’m sure combining our knowledge will be most helpful.”
“I agree,” stated Lady Beguiler. She glided to a nearby closet and opened it. “As you can see, I’ve also gathered plenty of supplies. Food. Water. Sleeping pills. Rope. Assorted implementations to provide motivation- of the pleasurable and not-so-pleasurable variety.” She quirked her smile suggestively.
“Excellent,” said the Doctor. “You’ve certainly stocked up.”
The Lady nodded her head. She approached a large, covered lump in the middle of the room.
“And now, for my pièce de résistance! Viola!”
She threw back the sheet and revealed a large black chair with a television screen attached hovering right at eye level.
A brainwashing chair. She had actually done it.
Impressed, Dr Dormir noticed that the chair was hooked up to a control panel somewhat hidden on the other side of the room. He walked over to examine it in more detail.
The Lady followed him, eager to show off her work. “THIS is the control panel for my brainwashing chair. From here, you can monitor heartbeat, breathing, and eye movements. You can use this program to choose what she is seeing on the screen and what subliminals are coming through. This panel shows which audio subliminals and hypnotic recording or recordings are playing at any given time. There’s also a microphone if you want to speak to her directly. There are controls on the chair to the chair itself, but there’s another set here. My guess is it will only take about a day or two for her to crack under the power of the chair and pledge herself to our side.”
The Doctor looked on in astonishment. “You have truly outdone yourself, lady. I am impressed by your ingenuity.”
Lady Beguiler beamed.
“May I see the chair again?” the Doctor inquired.
“Of course,” replied the Lady.
They walked back over to the large chair in the middle of the room. Doctor Dormir noticed there was a series of controls near the bottom that could make the chair recline, reverse, or even gently spin around.
He also noticed the chair had many small straps, presumably for tying someone up.
Dr Dormir tried one strap on his hand only to almost immediately get free of it.
“I’m worried about these straps,” he remarked as he wriggled out. “That journalist is wily like a fox- surely she will be able to free herself.”
“Not when they’re attached properly,” said Lady Beguiler. “You must not have attached them correctly before . Also, she will have many straps typing down each arm, not just one.”
“Do you mind if I try again?” asked Dr Dormir. He took Lady Beguiler’s arm.
She pulled it back quickly, instinctively.
“My Lady,” he said reasonably. “I cannot test this on myself. And you and Lizzy Lampost have a very similar frame.”
“Very well,” said Lady Beguiler, as she allowed her arm to be strapped down. She instructed the Doctor how to use the straps to tie her tightly enough to bind her without cutting off her circulation. When she was satisfied with his performance, she wriggled and wriggled her arm. As predicted, it would not free.
“Are you satisfied now, Doctor?” she asked.
“Indeed,” he replied, mildly. “You were correct- the straps are very strong.” There was something very odd in his tone.
Before she could think about it, Lady Beguiler felt herself suddenly pushed off balance and back into the chair. Then there was a great weight on top of her. She tried to struggle and wrestle it off but she quickly found her other arm tied down. Then her leg. Then, finally, her head.
“What?” she asked stunned to the figure on top of her. “What did I....?”
Dr Dormir tied a bandana around her mouth. He then calmly pressed two fingers of his right hand to the side of her neck. He said a quiet, firm word.
Lizzy Lampost woke up in a dark room with a television showing a strange spirally pattern in front of her. She tried to move her arm.
It was stuck.
All of her was stuck. She was strapped down!
She attempted to scream but found the sound was muffled by something in her mouth.
She heard an evil, chilling voice to her side. “At last, Ms. Lampost! You’re finally awake!”