tagMind ControlWage Slaves

Wage Slaves

byJukeboxEMCSA©

Detective Lloyd Donahue noticed the girl approaching when she was about fifteen feet away from the entrance to the store. He recognized the look on her face more than anything else about her--she was the fifth employee of 'Strings and Things' to come in since the bust, and they all had that same expression. This one had it worse than some of the others. Lloyd was willing to bet she had a record of some sort, even if she was clean at the moment. She had the body language of someone who'd spent a few too many nights in a holding cell to be comfortable around cops. Her eyes added mistrust and fear to the bewilderment he'd seen in the other girls. She wasn't just unsure of the situation, she actively wanted to avoid it.

That didn't stop her from walking right up to the police tape that blocked the entrance, though. Her eyes might have wanted to hesitate, but her body didn't even pause. She started to duck right under the tape like it didn't apply to her, and one of the uniformed cops said sharply, "Hey! Can't you read?"

"It's okay," Lloyd shouted over from where he was going through the store's books. "Let her in." He turned away from the computer and picked up his walkie-talkie. "Yeah, Gina?" he said into it. "Yeah, we got another one. Female, caucasian, looks to be about twenty-four, twenty-five...I'd say about 5'9". Brown hair, brown eyes."

Once she did get inside, the girl looked like she was kind of at a loss to figure out what to do next. That was probably the programming breaking down when confronted with an unexpected situation. The girl knew she had to get to work on time, but there were no customers, and forensics had already put everything that wasn't nailed down into plastic bags and taken it off to the lab. The evidence locker was going to look like a fucking Arts and Crafts class for the next month or two.

"We were expecting a 'Francine' to show up about now," Gina said over the walkie-talkie. "That's probably her. Can you spot a name-tag?"

"Hang on, I'll check." Lloyd went around the counter to get a good look at the girl. That was one of the nice things about this whole fucked-up mess; everyone had to wear a name-tag. "Yeah, this is Francine. You wanna get out here and start the counseling?"

Francine looked sharply at him, her eyes narrowed in hostility. "Counseling for what?" she asked. "Where's Mr. Federer?"

Lloyd lowered the walkie-talkie and tried to put his hand on her shoulder, but she took a quick step backwards. "Look," he said, "this is going to be a little difficult to believe for you right now, but...your boss has been arrested for violating state and federal labor laws. We believe that he's been using certain experimental and highly illegal technology to influence your mind." She started to open her mouth, but he held up his hand. "I know, it sounds crazy, but if you start to think about it--really think about it--you'll probably notice that some of the things you've been doing don't make a lot of sense."

"So wait, wait, wait," Francine said, her expression souring. Lloyd wasn't surprised. Two of the other girls had broken down crying when they'd finally managed to work through their conditioning and realize what had happened to them. "You're telling me you've closed the store?"

Lloyd raised an eyebrow. Obviously, some of them were more deeply conditioned than others. "Well, yes," he said. "But it's more important for you to understand that your boss, Mr. Federer, has been brainwashing you. He's been altering your mind. Try to think about what you used to be like before you took this job, and what you're like now."

Francine's mouth narrowed into a thin line that only accentuated her sharp, bony features. "You closed the fucking store?" she snapped. "Just fucking perfect. Thanks so fucking much for fucking up another job for me!"

Lloyd frowned, and tried again. "You need to try to think about this," he said, trying to sound soothing. He knew it wasn't his strong suit, though. Where the hell was Gina? "Allan Federer has been brainwashing you and all the other employees--"

"Yeah, yeah, the Muzak shit," Francine said dismissively. "You wanna talk 'important', I've got rent due in a week and a half, my boyfriend's unemployment ran out yesterday, and now I don't have a fucking job. That's fucking 'important', Mister I-Love-Screwing-People-Over-Because-I've-Got-A-Cushy-Government-Job!"

Lloyd's jaw dropped. He saw Gina coming out of the back room, and he gestured her over urgently. "Okay, say again," he said to Francine as soon as Gina was in earshot. "You know about the brainwashing?"

"Sure," Francine said, crossing her arms and glaring at the two of them. "I ain't stupid, I got my GED. You think just because I work retail, I'm dumb or something?"

Lloyd's expression hardened. "Listen, lady, you might not be dumb, but I don't think you understand exactly what's going on here. Your boss is currently looking at a long stretch in federal prison for this brainwashing scheme, and now you're telling me you knew about it. That might just earn you the cell next to his if you don't explain exactly how you knew, and fast. Because there are four young women in various stages of a nervous breakdown right now as they realize just what that 'Muzak shit' made them do--"

"Oh, puh-lease!" Francine said, rolling her eyes. "This is the best fucking job I've ever had. The problem with those bitches is they don't know how good they have it, working here. I didn't help Mr. Federer do it, or anything. I figured out what he was doing all on my own. But if he'd have told me about this? I'd have fucking volunteered."

Lloyd and Gina exchanged glances. "We're going to need to take a formal statement," Lloyd said at last. "We can do it here, or down at the station if you'd prefer."

"I had enough of cops after I got off probation," Francine replied. "You want me to talk, I'll talk, but I ain't sitting down in a police station unless you arrest me."

Lloyd really wished he could find a good reason to arrest Francine, but Gina stepped in. She'd been trained to help deal with traumatized witnesses; even if Francine didn't seem all that traumatized right now, Gina would still handle this better. "It's okay," she said, taking out a tape recorder. "You just go ahead and explain to us what's going on, and hopefully we'll have everything we need without having to go anywhere." She pushed down the record button. "Please, Francine," she said. "Go ahead and tell us your story."

Francine still looked wary, but she must have realized she didn't have much of a choice in the matter. "All right," she said. "Not like it matters now anyway. So I first...

*****

So I first figured out that something was fucked up when Mr. Federer installed the whole elevator music system. He told us that it was just something to help productivity, or some shit like that, but come on. Nobody installs an expensive speaker system just because they think their employees work faster with music playing. It's the same bullshit everywhere, you know? Like when I worked at 'Mister Games', and the boss put a microwave in the break room because he said that it would help us save money by cooking our own food, and then he was all, like, "Oh, and by the way, that means that you won't be allowed to leave store premises on your lunch break!" Total BS. Every guy who owns one of these little independent stores, they're all looking for ways to screw you over.

So yeah, he's installing this whole big speaker system, and he's got this little skinny German guy with great big glasses working on it--yeah, Doctor Dietz. What, really? Interpol? Jeez, and I thought he was just a little weaselly dude. Anyhow, yeah, he's working on it, and he's always looking at our tits when he thinks we're not looking, and he's always walking around with some gizmo or other talking about "calibrating sound levels" or some shit like that. And I thought it was kind of weird, because nobody really cares if they get good sound on their shitty elevator music, but who fucking cares, right? It's just a retail job. They all suck just as bad as each other. I'd go home, I'd get st--drunk, I'd fuck my boyfriend and I'd forget about it.

So they start up the sound system, and Mr. Federer, he takes a six-week vacation to Florida. And that's another thing that kind of hits me funny, because it's the middle of November. Oh, come on, haven't either of you ever had a job in the real world? November into December is the busiest time of the year, especially for a crafts store like this place. We get fucktons of losers in here making nativity scenes out of pipe cleaners and popsicle sticks, or shit like that. It's busy open to close. The holidays are the one time of the year when the storeowners roll up their sleeves and pitch in just like the rest of us, because it's cheaper than hiring extra seasonal help. That's what you gotta remember about all these guys. They're all penny-pinching little bastards. So here's Mr. Federer, installing this brand-new speaker system that looks like it cost a fortune and then skipping out on the holiday rush, and I'm wondering what's up with that, you know?

Brandy? Fuck Brandy. Fuck all those other girls. They're a bunch of stuck-up college bitches taking a job to help pay their way through school, they don't know shit about dick. Fuck no, I won't watch my language! It's been nine months since I could swear inside this store, I'm gonna fucking enjoy it! What are you gonna do, arrest me for swearing?

Yeah, yeah, whatever. Point is, Brandy and those other girls, they don't know what it's like when you work retail for a living, instead of just to get spending cash to cover what Mommy and Daddy don't pay out for college. They just work one job for the summer, maybe a year or so, and it's off to find something "dignified". The rest of us? We work one job for a year or so, and then the store closes, or we hear that the 'Candy Is Dandy' on the other end of the mall pays a buck more an hour, or we get canned just because we showed up a little st--drunk one day for work and the boss is a total prick about it. So we get another, and another, and pretty soon that shit is just clogging up your job history and you can't get anything but retail jobs, and then you get to know how shit works around here pretty fucking good. So Brandy and those other girls, they might not have noticed anything weird, but I sure as fuck did.

That didn't mean I paid attention to the music, though. I just tuned it out; we all did. It was elevator music, you know? All crappy strings and no lyrics and you just sort of push it to the back of your head and get on with the day, especially when the days were as busy as they were. We had people in here all the damn time, buying yarn and styrofoam and all that shit, and we could barely keep up.

Yes, there's a fucking point to this. I'm getting to the fucking point. The fucking point is that it was crunch time, but Mr. Federer was still away in Florida for another week, and Keisha could say she was the supervisor all she wanted but I knew she couldn't do dick about it if I called in sick. And it was a Saturday night and I wanted to go see my boyfriend's band play, so I picked up the phone to call and say I had the flu...

And I just stopped. I put the phone back down again, told myself it wouldn't be right to skip work when we were so busy like this, and started getting ready for work. And if I was Brandy, or one of those other college girls, I probably wouldn't have even thought twice about it. I'd have been all, like, "Oh, of course it's not right to call in sick when you're not really sick! It's also not right to leave your cell phone on when you're working, or take a long break, or cross against the traffic light," or eighteen other kinds of bullshit.

But retail vets, we know better. We don't get vacations. They don't care about us, we don't care about them. It's been five years since the first time I called in sick when I just needed a day off, and four years since I stopped giving a fuck about it. I knew this was weird, deep down in my gut, even if my brain kept telling me that it was totally normal and I should stop thinking so hard about it.

So I went to work, and I was still trying to figure out why the fuck I did that. Only I wasn't, because every time I tried to think about it, I just sort of wound up humming along to the elevator music while I restocked the shelves or fronted the merchandise. It wasn't really important, you know? I was at work, and even if I kind of had other places I wanted to be, this was still a fun job.

And that's when I really knew something was wrong. Because this job sucks. The customers are all the kind of people who are out of grade school and are still making shit out of yarn, the merchandise is so boring I wouldn't even steal it, my co-workers are either stuck-up college bitches or mousy girls who work here for the employee discount on their crafts shit, and the only thing that keeps me here is the commission. I've hated every second of every shift I ever had. But here I was, refilling the beads instead of listening to my boyfriend's band, and I was actually happy.

And the more I thought about it, the more I noticed that it wasn't a "real" kind of happy. It was...okay, look, I've done a little pot, once or twice. I already got busted for it and I already did my time, so don't even fucking think about trying to arrest me, okay? But the point is, I know what it feels like to get baked, and that was what this felt like. It wasn't the kind of happy you get from going down to the beach with friends on your day off, it was the kind of happy you get from doing hits off your boyfriend's gravity bong. My head felt all empty, I felt all mellow and foggy and whatever I had to do to get through the day and do the job right, that was cool. I wasn't giggly or anything, but I felt totally stoned off my ass.

I didn't know what was causing it, not then. I just knew that something was making the shift go by in this warm, sticky haze of...the other girls told you about that? Yeah, it felt hot. Not as much then as it does now, but I was getting these sort of warm tingles all over when I did my job right. Like, my boyfriend called about halfway through my shift to ask me where I was and why I wasn't at the gig, and I started to answer...but something made me stop what I was doing, and switch my phone off instead of answering it. And when I did that, I got this warm little rush between my legs, like someone had just blown a little puff of air right on my clit. That was the best of them, that night, but even little shit like straightening the shelves and taking out the garbage made me feel like someone was petting me all over.

The buzz lasted all the way through to when I got to the bus station. I found myself actually wanting to go back to work, and I knew that was some fucked-up shit, because I don't know anyone who actually volunteers for a retail shift, and I bet you don't either. I thought about that on the ride home--it was kind of hard, because my brain kept wanting to slide away from the idea, but you know what it's like when you know something's not right, but you don't know what it is. Every time my brain told me to forget, I forgot, but I'd start thinking about something else and it'd lead me right back to the things I was supposed to forget. And after a while, I noticed that I kept forgetting, and that was something else I started thinking about.

And by the time I got home, I'd realized that I'd been feeling good about work for a while now. This was the first time I really noticed, because this was the first time I'd tried to skip, but when I thought about it, I remembered feeling kind of happy about going to work for a few weeks now. No, I still didn't figure it out that night. I got home and got into a fight with my boyfriend about missing his gig, and by the time we got to the make-up sex, it kind of didn't seem all that important.

But over the next week, I noticed even more stuff. I noticed that all the other girls at work had this weird dreamy look on their faces every day, and I was pretty sure I looked like that too. Not that I minded. Fuck, I loved it. Every day I came in to work, I felt better coming in to work. Every day I spent here, I enjoyed it more. It got hotter every time--I wasn't, you know, moaning or anything, because keeping quiet and acting polite and "professional" felt good too, but by the time Mr. Federer got back from Florida, I was creaming my jeans pretty much non-stop. It was fucking sweet; I'd be sitting there, helping some little old lady pick out a macrame kit for her niece, and the whole time it felt like someone was pounding my cunt with a foot-long dildo. I never used to like helping the customers much, but damn, you know?

I figured it out when Mr. Federer got back. He said something about how he'd developed a little hearing problem while he was away, and part of me just wanted to believe everything he said about everything by then, but the other part of me, the part that had been noticing shit already? It wondered why Doc Dietz had the same weird hearing aid things in his ears, too, if it was a "hearing problem." And then things started to click about that elevator music. I would watch customers who spent a lot of time in the store, the real hard-core hobby people, and after a couple of hours, they'd be sort of humming along to the music, and then they'd start straightening merch without even realizing they were doing it. And they'd get that look on their faces. You just knew that it was giving them deep-down tingles to do it. Some of our regular customers, they started hanging around for hours, helping us out without even being paid for it. Not that we needed much help by then. We were all pretty fucking motivated, you know?

And a few days after he got back, Mr. Federer called me into his office for a little meeting. He had the speakers in there, too, and the sound was even better. He and Dietz were both waiting for me, and they started talking about how happy they were with my productivity and all that bullshit, but I knew what I was really in there for. I walked around Mr. Federer's desk with this big, dopey grin on my face, nodding and thanking him for saying so many nice things about me, but the whole time my pussy was so itchy I could barely keep my hand out of my skirt. When he turned his chair to face me I could see his boner sticking up in his pants, and for the first time ever, that looked so fucking hot to me. I couldn't help myself, I dropped to my knees and unzipped him, and oh my fucking god, I've never felt so good giving a blowjob in my life.

It felt like I had a clit inside my mouth, it was so good. Every time I bobbed my head up and down the shaft, I felt like I was cumming all over again. Doc Dietz had gone around behind me and pulled up my skirt, and I didn't even care, I was so horny. Hell, I wanted it. My mouth and my hands were too busy with Mr. Federer's cock to really help him out, but if I could have, I would have. When he pulled my panties to the side and slipped me his dick, it was...it was the fucking nuclear orgasm bomb, or something. I can't even describe it. There aren't words for how fucking good that felt. He could have pounded my pussy forever, and I'd still have begged for more.

Instead, he wound up slipping it into my ass instead. And when I realized what he was doing, I wanted to tell him to stop, but my mouth was full of cock and it didn't even take a whole second before I could feel my thoughts twisting around inside my head until what I wanted was to take his cock up my ass while I sucked Mr. Federer's cock. And suddenly I'm grinding my ass up against Dietz's dick, because when he stuck it in me, it felt so fucking hot and dirty and good that I just had to have every inch of that inside me, and he's pounding away and it's forcing my face down onto Mr. Federer's cock and then suddenly I'm cumming like crazy without even touching my pussy.

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byJukeboxEMCSA© 5 comments/ 38889 views/ 11 favorites

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