Archive for April, 2020

Early Bird Sneak Peek: “Rabbit Hole”!

April 29, 2020

Hi all! It’s time for another Early Bird Sneak Peek, where I share a glimpse at the story my lucky Early Bird patrons will be enjoying next Saturday thanks to their pledges at my Patreon page! Of course, if you’re not an Early Bird patron, you’ll still get a story next week–“Xcogitate”, teased previously, has already been submitted to the EMCSA. But the Early Bird patrons will be getting “Rabbit Hole” (MC MD MF MA)!

We’ve all lost a little time on social media every now and again, clicking from blog to blog and topic to topic as we follow the chain of associations through to ever more interesting websites. That’s what Shaniqua’s doing right now… although she’s following the tingling feeling between her legs to ever-kinkier fetish sites about hypnosis. She’s learning something new about herself. And as shocking as it is, she’s finding she doesn’t want to stop. Here’s a taste:

There were reblogs, too, content from other blogs with similar themes. Shaniqua had never been so glad that her ‘Following’ list was set to ‘Private’, and she tapped over and over on her phone as name after name scrolled by. Many of them featured intricate spirals, looping animations that tugged Shaniqua’s gaze to the center of the screen and made her imagine herself as the star of one of the little hypno-comics. So many of them involved a woman just like her, seeing a spiral or reading an induction or just going online and masturbating herself into a lazy trance until her soft, malleable mind dripped out between her thighs, and it made Shaniqua’s pussy surge just a little bit more every time one slid past.

They weren’t always just spirals, either. Some of them featured little stories afterward, monologues from a hypnotist to a subject that described the power that the patterns held over the weak, horny submissives who lost themselves in them. Shaniqua found herself reading one of them over and over, squirming out of her pants and kicking off her panties so that she could openly rub and stroke her soaking pussy while she went back to the animation and stared at it. The words of the story echoed in her mind, making her shirt feel tight and uncomfortable against her heavy breasts as her fingers found her aching clit. ‘You don’t need to think anymore. Your mind is captured by the spiral.’

Hope you enjoy it!

A Rebuttal, From the Succubi and Seductive Demons of America

April 26, 2020

(This post has been brought to you by the efforts of my 141 cryptic and zoological Patrons! Visit my Patreon page to learn how to become one of them.)

[In the interests of providing equal time, the following is a guest post written by a representative from the Succubi and Seductive Demons of America (SASDA). The management is not responsible for its content.]

Recently, there has been some discussion in these circles of the social interest quaintly described by the prudish and sensationalistic as “monsterfucking”. Naturally, we here at the Succubi and Seductive Demons of America hold and have held since literally the dawn of humanity the opinion that carnal relationships between humans and the supernatural, while containing by their necessity an element of power exchange, are healthy and… well, not natural, obviously, but certainly very normal. However, we are not here today to take issue with the use of the clearly lurid and prurient term “monsterfucking”. We are here to right a far greater injustice.

The recent ranking of monsters with which to engage in said carnal relations appears to have left off, no doubt through accidental omission, any kind of succubus, incubus, concubus, or similar tempter of the flesh from the realms Infernal. Instead, a variety of clearly inferior options for slaking the wicked thirsts were presented, some of which could barely be said to involve mind-clouding or otherwise hypnotic magicks. It is time today to discuss the members of SASDA and their obvious and provable status as the best options for all of your will-sapping needs.

Now, we are not here today to impugn the vampire. The undead have long had a productive and collegiate relationship with the Circles of Hell, and long may it continue in the name of the dread lord Satan. But when it comes to the superior monsterfucking choice, one does have to… hesitantly… point out that vampires’ interest in sexuality is purely oral, and virtually always fatal. Whereas a succubus presents her lush temptations for the carnal use of her putative lover (we decline the clearly biased and prejudicial term “victim” here, another failing of the original article) without reservation and with the promise that any consequences, whether for the body, the will, or the eternal soul, can be put off for another day. What better offer is there?

We are here to impugn the mermaids. Fuck mermaids. Fuck those goddamn fishy motherfuckers right in the ovipositor ducts which are the closest they get to reproductive organs. Seriously, people. Who wants to get nasty with something that doesn’t even stick around in the same zip code for sex?

The lamia, on the other hand… okay, yes, there is a cloaca involved, and we’re not even going to get into the hemipenes. But at least they do have sex, and certainly there’s a time-honored tradition of being seduced by serpentine entities with hypnotic gazes. But if that’s what you’re looking for – good grief, people, do you know how many snake demons are wandering around the depths of Hell just waiting for your summoning circle? Do you have any idea how many of them can shapeshift when it’s time to consummate the relationship to replace the tail with more compatible organs? There are better options, that’s all we’re saying here.

And the fae. Now, we’re not going to say that there isn’t anything attractive about tall, slender, pale individuals with disdainful charm and a certain swagger to them. But the paperwork! Unutterable H Unutterable, it’s like having sex with the motherfucking DMV! Just picking a goddamned grape from the wrong vine obligates you to thirteen kinds of specific favors and debts, let alone everything you need to do in order to get inside their tight leather pants. With SASDA, there is exactly one contract to sign, and by the time you put your name on the dotted line you’ve already forgotten what you’re agreeing to. That’s the kind of simplicity you can trust. (In fact, thanks to certain magicks in our possession, it’s the kind of simplicity you can’t not trust. But we digress.)

And we are not even going to dignify the other monsters on that list by mentioning them. Upstarts and johnny-come-latelies, all of them, the product of manga fans and Drizzt Do’Urden enthusiasts who’ve gotten above their station. We’re immortal and ageless demons, people. We don’t have time to suck up to the DeviantArt crowd. (That said, if what you want is tentacles and webbing, we can make it happen. Call us!)

So there you have it. The seductive demon, clearly your only choice for sating your physical lusts with an inhuman monster who will steal away your will and drain your very soul. And we’re not just saying that because we’re taking all your other choices away with our sinister wiles. We hope you’ll consider us for all your future sexual fantasies, and please don’t worry that when you dream about cavorting with us in the realms beyond space and time you are making us more and more real with every night spent in fitful, restless slumber. Thank you and may you be consumed for all eternity by the flames of desire.

Early Bird Sneak Peek: “Language Barrier”!

April 24, 2020

Hi all! It’s time for another Early Bird Sneak Peek, where I share a glimpse at the story my lucky Early Bird patrons will be enjoying next Saturday thanks to their pledges at my Patreon page! Of course, if you’re not an Early Bird patron, you’ll still get a story next week–“The Real You”, teased previously, has already been submitted to the EMCSA. But the Early Bird patrons will be getting “Language Barrier” (MC MD MF)!

Marcia’s spending her last summer before college on an extended trip to France, polishing her language skills and broadening her experiences among the beautiful towns and villages of a foreign country. Unfortunately, it turns out that her high school French isn’t quite up to the task of immersion among fluent local speakers. That’s got its drawbacks, but it at least means that she can’t be hypnotized by a stranger here… right? Here’s a taste:

She tried to look past him, to see if there was anyone in the little restaurant that she could flag down and ask for a translation, but the few patrons that she saw all seemed to be wrapped up in their own business. Not that she had time for more than a glance–the moment Marcia’s gaze shifted away from the stranger’s eyes, he cupped her chin again and drew her attention to his deep, penetrating stare once more. “Sangray,” he growled, his hand moving her head up and down in a slow, lazy nod. “Sanponsay. Sanzyday.”

He leaned in closer to her, not quite uncomfortably intimate but definitely close enough to emphasize the difference in their heights. Even sitting down, Marcia was probably a good three inches shorter than the stranger, and even with her head tilted back uncomfortably far, she found herself having to look up to keep her gaze locked onto his. It occurred to her that she didn’t actually have to keep looking him in the eyes, but every time she tried to even so much as glance away, he gently but firmly directed her chin back in line with his dark, piercing stare.

“Plonjaydanzmeyeuze,” he murmured softly, taking her wrist in his hand and beginning to swing her arm gently back and forth. “Plonjaydanzmongray.” It made her muscles feel oddly loose and rubbery, as though he was shaking all the strength out of them and leaving her limp and passive in his grasp. Marcia opened her mouth to object, but the stranger simply pressed it closed again and Marcia found herself too distracted by the weird, tingling numbness that spread slowly through her hand and forearm to protest again.

Hope you enjoy it!

Top Five Monsterfucking Fetishes You’ll Develop When You Get Into Hypnokink

April 19, 2020

(This post has been brought to you by the efforts of my 141 wonderful and wondrous Patrons! Visit my Patreon page to learn how to become one of them.)

Okay. Let’s be honest. Being a kinky geek means that pretty much by definition, at least a little bit of monsterfucking fetishism is going to rub off on you every now and then. It’s the water in which we swim. We are presented pretty much from birth with a stream of sexy catgirls and hot robots and romanticized fish people, and while a lot of that is catered to the male gaze because of the institutionalized sexism in the industries that produce science fiction and fantasy, there’s just so damn much of it that you can’t read a comic book without bumping into a super-powered horse that sometimes transforms into Supergirl’s boyfriend. Monsterfucking is popular, is what I’m trying to say here.

And likewise, mind control is equally popular. And the Venn diagram between those two has a lot of overlap, because when it comes to monsterfucking, there’s a certain amount of expected reticence that the human protagonist has to overcome and mind control is a good way to elide that reticence. Sure, you might be thinking it’s weird to have sex with a woman who’s fish/spider/snake/bird/mass of tentacles from the waist down, but one hypnotic Mickey Finn later and suddenly that’s sounding like an excuse to try new things. If you read mind control porn, you’re going to be exposed to some monsterfucking. Here’s the kinks you’re most likely to develop.

5) Spider Queens and Tentacle Monsters (tie). Both of these fall into the fifth spot at approximately the same time, and for approximately the same reason – bondage. There’s a lot of natural connections to be made between physical helplessness and mental helplessness, and both spider monsters and tentacle monsters have the ability to wrap up their victims (assume heavy ironic quote marks around “victim” every time it’s used in this post) in a way that makes them unable to resist. They’re not natural mind controllers, which is why they fall so low on the list, but usually they’ll have a venomous bite or a contact poison they exude that makes their chosen slaves pliable and docile.

4) Sirens. This is really a catch-all term for anything aquatic and hypnotic; sometimes they’ll be beautiful women who live underwater, sometimes they’ll be actual merfolk with fish tails. Either way the gimmick is usually pretty straightforward – mesmerizing song that overwhelms common sense and judgment, hapless victim lured into the sea, some combination of sex and either death or permanent abduction to a new home beneath the waves. Scores a little lower than some, despite the high marks for “seductive voice” as a mechanism for mind control, because drowning is very unsexy and being turned into a fish person isn’t that hot to most people either.

3) Fae/Faeries. Now we’re getting into the real heavy monsterfucking material. There’s so much to play with when you’re dealing with fae or faeries (or pixies or nixies or dryads or naiads or any of the whole cluster of “ethereal otherworldly beings who lure people away with glamours” entities). There’s the act of luring, which is usually played as a seductive dance between fae and human. There’s the glamour itself, generally an enchantment that lulls the victim into a realm of distracted rapture where the normal rules of judgment and common sense are suspended. There’s the fae bargain, usually presented with the emotional resonance of a BDSM slave contract. And there are the consequences, which are almost always endless pleasure and service to an entity with boundless personal magnetism. Would probably be top of this list if they were more, um… monstery. Usually it’s just pale skin and pointy ears.

2) Lamia. As with the sirens, this doesn’t necessarily have to be a literal half-woman half-serpent; there are a lot of variations to this trope, from the snake that talks like a person to the human-seeming individual with vertical slits for eyes and a serpent’s fangs and tongue. However you slice it, though, this is the basic idea of a human with serpentine traits. Historically, the snake has always symbolized and represented mesmerism, even before Mesmer himself was born, and it’s almost a given that they’re going to have a hypnotic gaze that can captivate their victims. Plus, as with the webs and tentacles, they have the ability to enfold their prey physically as well as mentally into their power, doubling the sense of helplessness and making the connection between the monster and kinks like bondage all the more apparent. Oh, plus the sibilant hiss that most of them speak in tends to sound a lot like a seductive whisper. Expect to see plenty of fanart of this one.

1) Vampires. Pretty much ever since Bram Stoker’s Dracula, this has been the go-to hypnotic monsterfuckee for mainstream media and erotica alike. They can appear just human enough to be seductive, while retaining enough of a monstrous aspect to be taboo. They’re glamorous, both in the colloquial and magical sense, and they balance the line between compelling eroticism and terror in a way that heightens both. They’re alluring and deadly, and yet there’s always that sense that if an accommodation can be made with them, they’ll provide an eternity of bliss. And biting is just plain hot. It’s almost impossible to be into mind control as a kink without developing just a little bit of vampkink to go with it… and of course for many, it’s far more than just a little.

And there we have it! Naturally, this only scratches the surface, and I’m sure you have your favorites as well. When it comes to monsters, as with mind control, the only limits are those of the imagination.

Early Bird Sneak Peek: “Xemplify”!

April 16, 2020

Hi all! It’s time for another Early Bird Sneak Peek, where I share a glimpse at the story my lucky Early Bird patrons will be enjoying next Saturday thanks to their pledges at my Patreon page! Of course, if you’re not an Early Bird patron, you’ll still get a story next week–“What Was I Thinking?”, teased previously, has already been submitted to the EMCSA. But the Early Bird patrons will be getting “Xemplify” (MC FF MF)!

Becky and Rowan have vaped their way through the whole stash of X they bought. Which means it’s time to go see their dealer, Kev, for a fresh batch. Kev doesn’t like dealing with X-heads, especially not ones who are nearly past the point of no return in their addictions, but he’s not willing to turn them away either. Not when he can find a way to make their cravings work for him. Here’s a taste:

There were two of them outside. Kev recognized Rowan, one of his regulars, and another woman, a Caucasian with blonde hair that he didn’t recognize. No, wait. He did recognize her. She was with Rowan on her last visit, when the exotic dancer pulled up in a car that was practically begging to be stolen and rolled into Kev’s waiting room with a wad of cash that she could barely get her fingers around and bought pretty much every last drop of X he had in the building.

He had a bad feeling about that deal when he was making it, but Kev knew better than to argue with a customer. If he didn’t sell them their shit, someone else would, and one of the quickest ways to make an addict hostile was to make them think you were holding out on them. Kev had a few nasty scars from making a trial of that particular error. Rowan and… what was her name, Betty? They were either going to handle their shit or they weren’t. He wasn’t their dad.

Judging by the way they were hammering on his door, they hadn’t. He didn’t know how much X they’d taken, but judging by their wardrobe, it was a hell of a lot. Rowan had apparently pulled on a very stylish brown Burberry overcoat and absolutely nothing else, and Betty/Betsy had draped herself in a 1000-count linen sheet that she’d seemingly dragged through more than a few puddles on her way here. Kev had to imagine that they came on foot–not only did it explain the mud clinging to their toes, but they both looked like they didn’t even know what a car was anymore, let alone how to drive it.

Well, fuck. And Kev liked Rowan, too. She was always good for a little company while she smoked, and at least a handjob depending on what she was on at the time. With a sigh, Kev pulled on a robe over his pale, skinny body and trotted downstairs to answer the door.

Hope you enjoy it!

Is It Hypnosis? Part Twenty-Four

April 12, 2020

(This post has been brought to you by the efforts of my 137 spectacular and special Patrons! Visit my Patreon page to learn how to become one of them.)

As we continue looking at my old stories that use hypnosis to see how plausible the mind control is (and how advisable, if for no other reason than I don’t want anyone getting nasty ideas when I admit that something wildly unethical is nonetheless technically achievable) we’re finally getting into my current Patreon era of writing. Patreon really changed my life, I have to admit; having fans who are willing to support me financially has really kept me going during times when I might otherwise have stopped writing. And that’s not just because I need the money – it’s because knowing that I have an audience who appreciates my work really makes me proud and happy. So thanks to all 137 of you!

Anyhow, that’s kind of an aside. Let’s look at some stories!

I Was Made for Loving You: Just in case I didn’t make it obvious here – PHOEBE isn’t really a robot. (Cue startled gasps….) It would take an awful lot of work to condition someone like this, I think; PHOEBE doesn’t just have a robot mode, she’s got an internally consistent worldview that conceptualizes all of her daily activities, from eating to sleeping to exercising, as the activities of a humanoid automaton. That doesn’t sound at all simple. On the other hand, she does mention several ‘debugging sessions’ that involved fixing unintended side effects of suggestions, and it’s strongly hinted at least that this was her big-time lifelong uber-fantasy and she was willing to work hard at achieving it. I’d say this is doable, and probably even ethical for someone who’s taking appropriate safety precautions.

(The Joyce stuff… I’ve thought occasionally about writing a sequel where they offer the same deal to her, just to make clear that this is in no way a predatory intention at the end. PHOEBE thinks Joyce would be interested in being a robot as well, based on her knowledge of the woman. She isn’t planning to force it on her.)

Baby Got Back: This is another one that I think is possible with only a minimum of special pleading; it may not be the most likely thing in the world that a guy who’s been consensually hypnotized to develop visual triggers like this would drop for a random woman at a kink con, but at the same time I’ve been in enough “this is similar to an existing trigger and my brain really wants to go into trance” situations to know it’s not impossible. And Lashawnda is certainly focused and relaxed enough to enter a hypnotic state as well. She even gives explicit and enthusiastic consent!

The Pendulum’s Promise: This, I think, is one of those stories where I have to admit that there’s a limit to how much knowledge you can even obtain about something so ethically dubious. I really don’t know how the human brain would respond to being abducted and repeatedly subjected to hypnotic stimuli with the explicit intent of permanent slave conditioning, and I don’t want to know. I don’t want anyone to know. I have a disturbing suspicion that it might be successful in a Stockholm syndrome sort of way, but I have no intention of finding out and I hope none of you do either.

Wide Awake: Pretty much a ditto here; yeah, abusing your authority in order to have a sexual relationship with your patients probably does create a strong emotional bond that could be used in conjunction with covert hypnosis to cause someone to develop a submissive mindset, but, um… maybe don’t do that if you wind up in a position where the option is open to you? Don’t get me wrong, this is a very sexy fantasy and a really hot story, but fantasy is exactly where this should stay.

X, Y, and Zee: Finishing the installment with a strong “abuse of power” theme… obviously, this is based on the infamous Milgram ‘obedience to authority’ experiments, which have themselves been criticized as unethical and have sparked a whole series of debates about the responsibility a psychology researcher has in protecting their subjects while obtaining useful data. (There are honestly a lot of similarly terrible experiments from this era floating around if you go looking.)

It also sparked a lot of complaints about misrepresentation of results and inaccuracy – turns out, over half the subjects were able to tell that the person they were shocking was faking it – which is why, even though I absolutely would never recommend an experiment like the one performed in the story, I confess to a certain amount of morbid curiosity about the results. It’s a better designed test; there’s no actor, so no possibility of suspecting deception, and it’s at least better than trying to get someone to think they killed a person. But again, this is a hard pass in terms of real world activities whether it would work or not.

And on that cheerful note, we wrap up this installment! See you next week for another blog entry, and another time for another entry in this series!

Early Bird Sneak Peek: “Tabula Rasa”!

April 9, 2020

Hi all! It’s time for another Early Bird Sneak Peek, where I share a glimpse at the story my lucky Early Bird patrons will be enjoying next Saturday thanks to their pledges at my Patreon page! Of course, if you’re not an Early Bird patron, you’ll still get a story next week–“Voice Inside My Head”, teased previously, has already been submitted to the EMCSA. But the Early Bird patrons will be getting “Tabula Rasa” (MC MF MD)!

Tabby is talking to a nice lady about the teaching machine she used four years ago. She’s explaining everything she knows about how it works, what it did to her, and what it took away from her docile, obedient mind. It took away all the badness, all the disobedience, and all the sad things that kept her from making Teacher happy. It also took away everything that happened more than four years ago. Here’s a taste:

Tabby relaxed again, tension unwinding from her muscles as she leaned back in her chair. It never even occurred to her that Ella might be anything less than honest–Teacher never lied to her in her whole life that she could recall, so why would Ella? “Okay,” she said brightly, her pink cheeks once again crinkling in a cheerful grin. “Did he tell you to put clothes on me? Because I think I should take them off if he didn’t tell you to tell me to put them on.”

Ella’s face froze in a plastic, insincere smile. “Um, yes,” she said, her voice sounding artificially bright and cheerful in Tabby’s ears. “He told us you need to wear clothes from now on, and that you can’t, um…” Ella squirmed slightly in her seat, unable to meet Tabby’s gaze. “You can’t… offer yourself to anyone anymore. At least not until we’ve figured out what’s going on with you, and what the machine did to Candace.”

Tabby looked around, perplexed all over again. “The machine did something to Candace?” she asked. “Is that why you keep asking me about her? Because I don’t know where she is, I promise. And I’ve been inside the machine every day since Teacher found me. If she was in there, I would have seen her, honest.” She hoped she was making Ella happy with her answers–since they told Tabby that she couldn’t do anything sexual without permission, she felt like she was deprived of her best method of pleasing people. It made her feel a little bit anxious.

Hope you enjoy it!

How to Brainstorm

April 5, 2020

(This post has been brought to you by the efforts of my 133 supernaturally awesome Patrons! Visit my Patreon page to learn how to become one of them.)

I’ve been getting questions a lot lately about how I manage to keep my output up, and one of the biggest and most important tools I use is brainstorming. It’s a process that I don’t think gets enough attention, and so I’m going to share a few details about the way I do things in the hopes that it might help someone else. That’s not to say that this is the ‘correct’ way to brainstorm; there are as many ways as there are writers, and whatever process works for you is the way to do it. But this is often neglected in creative writing courses, so I thought I should discuss it here.

The first step is groundwork. Luckily, this is kind of the easiest step in the process – all you need to do is be interested in the world around you. Read a lot; fiction is good, because it helps you observe different literary techniques and styles that you can incorporate, but nonfiction is better, because you can break down the raw material and put it directly into your work. (My standing joke is that if you read fiction and steal every good idea for your own stories, that’s plagiarism. If you read nonfiction and steal every good idea for your own stories, that’s research.) The main idea is to get outside the tropes of your chosen field, get a lot of fresh ideas, and generally get your brain filled up so that the process of brainstorming is mostly just making interesting connections between the thoughts you already have.

(Note: I can’t stress how important it is to get outside your chosen field. The least interesting fantasy is written by people who only read fantasy, the least interesting comics are written by people who only read comics, and if you’ve ever read ‘Armada’, you already know that the least interesting sci-fi is written by obsessive sci-fi fans. It’s best to imagine ideas as water – the less you have going into your head, the more stagnant the stuff that’s already in there gets.)

So now you’ve been filling your brain with ideas, and you need to sit down and write something. It’s time to brainstorm. What you need for brainstorming is a source of potential inspirations that is large enough that you can keep going through it until you get an idea, and a simple way to jot down the ideas as they come to you. I use the website for my short stories, and I have a folder full of interesting pictures for my flash fics, but whatever you want to use is good. Maybe you’re flipping through old tabletop RPGs, maybe you’re skimming through galleries of sci-fi and fantasy art, maybe you’re looking at movie posters. Whatever it is, the point isn’t so much to gain direct inspiration as it is to let your mind wander to interesting places using the brainstorm as a jumping-off point.

It is important to recognize that there’s no particular timetable here. You may spend two minutes brainstorming, you may spend an hour. You may find an idea that doesn’t really click and jot it down for later, you may instantly find an entire story dropping into your brain. You may look at the same picture that seemed impenetrably dull last week and suddenly find that you know exactly what’s happening and how to work it into a story. Don’t panic if it doesn’t seem like it’s working. It will be not working right up until the point where it’s not not working, every single time. I can’t count the number of times I’ve thought to myself, “You know what? Maybe there’s just not a story in my head today,” only to find that five minutes later my fingers are rattling away on the keyboard.

It’s okay to discard ideas at this point. It’s okay to write them down in some kind of capsule form for later. It’s okay to come up with something really really bizarre and offbeat that you don’t think anybody but you will like. It’s okay to take an idea and yank it at right angles until it becomes a totally different idea. This is the point at which you’re just tugging on the threads in your mind until they unravel into something you can stitch together, and it’s important not to feel pressured into making the process happen. At some point, you’ll find something click, you’ll make a connection, and you’ll be able to write. Trust me. More importantly… trust yourself, and trust your brain.

Early Bird Sneak Peek: “Hang on to Your IQ”!

April 1, 2020

Hi all! It’s time for another Early Bird Sneak Peek, where I share a glimpse at the story my lucky Early Bird patrons will be enjoying next Saturday thanks to their pledges at my Patreon page! Of course, if you’re not an Early Bird patron, you’ll still get a story next week–“Zenith”, teased previously, has already been submitted to the EMCSA. But the Early Bird patrons will be getting “Hang on to Your IQ” (MC FF MA)!

Trinh is a video designer who specializes in 3D animation, and she’s found a group of like-minded friends who get together and share their work once a week. It started as practice. Then it became a hobby. And now, Trinh’s absolutely riveted to her screen. Here’s a taste:

The darkness wound around and around, engulfing first pink, then purple, then yellow in turn, almost as if the ribbon had run out and the ends of it were fluttering softly into the abyss at the center of the screen, and Trinh gave in willingly to the illusion. A tiny part of her noticed the little details that added verisimilitude to the effect, but they’d all long ago stopped pretending that they were only doing this to show off their animation chops. The public chats where they’d showed a few moments of hypnotic spirals and swirling patterns and unfolding rotations of tessellated tiles had given way to private rooms where they could show each other longer, more fascinating videos, and the Thursday night video sessions had become more and more focused on finding the most effective ways to shut off each other’s conscious minds.

They’d given up pretending they didn’t enjoy it. Trinh had a lot more fun once they’d abandoned that particular illusion.

There was a moment of complete darkness, just long enough to tease Trinh’s confused brain into wondering what would happen next, and then the void at the center of the screen spewed out a tunnel of rainbows that shot straight out in a burst of glorious color. It felt as though she was diving into the tunnel, pulled along into the pulsing tube of light toward an infinitely receding point of darkness, and Trinh leaned forward in her chair involuntarily to catch up. Her breath caught in her throat for a moment, then spilled out in a sleepy sigh of total enraptured amazement.

Every week, it felt like her mind sank quicker and more easily into dazed, hypnotic fascination. The anticipation, the expectation of trance combined with the reactions of the other women to still her thoughts more and more effortlessly each time, until the patterns on the screen numbed her brain into smooth, placid bliss within only moments. Or maybe they were all getting better at making these. Maybe session after session of staring into the swirling lights helped them understand what worked best to switch off their minds and melt their bodies into the most perfectly mesmerized, empty… drowsy… dreamy… the beams of light slowly twisted into a vortex of color, and Trinh sank helplessly into it.

Hope you enjoy it!