The Pied Piper of Construction 4: Passing the Site (hypno)

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The first time that Lane walked by the construction site he didn't think anything of it. He was just walking his usual shortcut and they had just started. He really didn't notice the music, and it didn't stick in his head. However, over the next few weeks, as he passed it, he started to notice it. The monotonous rhythm and pounding sound seemed to stick in his head. After the first couple of weeks he started to consider changing his route, but decided he didn't want to experiment with the back alleys all that much.

His first change in behavior didn't happen for a few weeks after that. His girlfriend Anna asked him why he'd changed his look. "What do you mean?"

"I mean that you seem to always be wearing tank tops now, never those layered tees you used to."

"Is it a bad change?"

"No, not at all. I like it when you show off your muscles. I just didn't think you were comfortable with it."

Lane shrugged. "It just seemed to be the thing to do." he said and changed the subject.

It was quiet for a few weeks after that, but Lane started to notice a few changes on his own. First was that hos workouts became much better. Somehow, thinking of the music made him drive harder, and he put on more muscle. Stranger, though, was his sleeping habits. He had always used the shortcut to work so he could sleep later, and would run along it so he could leave at the absolute last minute. Now he felt like he wanted to walk the route, or at least the part that went by the site, so he could hear the music. It was still annoying and odd, but something about it attracted him, and made him want to listen more. He tried to keep his mind on it and run by as normal, but in a few days of thinking about walking, he started to do it, getting up earlier so that he had the time.

It was a good thing for him that he had the solace of the music, because things began to go downhill after that pretty quickly. Anna broke up with him, claiming that he was getting distant, and saying that he'd started showing off not for her but to attract someone else. He told her it wasn't that, but she didn't believe him. Two days later, his manager called him in. "Your starting to get sloppy in the morning, Lane. You haven't crossed the line yet, but this is the third day in a row that you came in just under the wire to be on time."

Lane was shocked. "Really? I haven't changed my habits all that much. If anything, I've been getting up earlier."

"I don't know what's going on, but you need to shape up." His manager admonished and then dismissed him.

Lane tried to think of what could be taking longer. It never occurred to him that his walks by the site were getting slower and slower, and even if it had, the idea of not listening to the now beautiful music was unthinkable to him. So he was later and later to work, and got fired shortly thereafter.

The day after he got fired, Lane still got up early and started walking. He didn't think he was going to work, just that a day without the beautiful music was too hard to face after all his recent disappointments. As he got to the borders of the site, he stopped to listen, since he no longer had anywhere to go.

As he stood there, he went over the events of the past few weeks. Why is everything going wrong? I just don't know what changed. Well at least I have the music to listen to. The music to hear. The music to understand. Must listen to the music. It can help me. Have to listen. So beautiful. Listen and learn. Listen and obeyyyyyy..... Lane's mouth fell open and his eyes unfocused, as he truly listened deeply to the controlling music.

In a few minutes, a man stepped out of the door from the construction site. "I thought you might be joining us soon. One of the drones said a passerby was starting to be affected. What's your name boy?"

Lane snapped to attention. "Lane, master."

"Very good. First instruction, Lane, is that you are never to wear a shirt unless you need to so you don't get burned. So solve that and flex for me." Immediately Lane pulled the front of his tank top apart and flexed, showing the muscles he'd been bulking up over the past few weeks. "You'll do well here." the man said as he smiled. "Now go find the drone foreman and follow his instructions. Your orientation and first service will be tonight."

"Yes sir." Lane replied and walked into the site. He was suddenly happy, and the fact that his old life had fell apart no longer bothered him. He had a new life here. In fact, he belonged here. He knew that because the music said so. And the master and the music were always right. That is why he must obey them. Must always listen and obey. Listen and obey. Listen and obey...