She intrigued me before I even opened her mind
She intrigued me before I even opened her mind – she was at least 40, gorgeous, and dressed to pick up. None of this is uncommon in itself, but (without my influence) it’s odd to see women that blatantly dressed, rarer still when they’re that age, and unprecedented to see someone that attractive trying so hard.
I sat down beside her. Her hand was on my crotch before I’d even placed a drink order, and her tongue down my ear before it arrived. It wasn’t until the cab ride home – her home, at her insistence – that I entered her mind, and was surprised to see the work of a younger, clumsier me.
Inception is an odd film. Two things about it surprised me – the first was that it was enjoyable throughout, a rare feat in a popcorn flick. The second was it’s accuracy. For the first time, I wondered if I wasn’t alone, if perhaps Christopher Nolan has discovered my unique ability as well. It would certainly explain how he manages to get funding for a movie that doesn’t treat the audience like idiots, and it would definitely explain how he got that cast.
The vast majority of the film is, of course, completely wrong. Layers of dreams, architects, totems, that’s all the realm of science fiction. But there was one part, one concept that stood out to me, made me wonder if I wasn’t the first.
When you place an idea in someone’s mind, on some level, their brain is aware of it. It’s not equipped to outright reject a thought, but it can detect that it’s out of place, and so it obsesses over it. It tries to approach it from every angle, it tries to justify it, it can’t stop niggling away at it. And when a brain is obsessing over an idea, it becomes the first thing that a person thinks about when they wake up, the last thought on their mind when they go to sleep.
It grows to define them. It changes who they are, and bends the course of their life towards the thought, the idea that you’ve put in their head. It becomes their obsession, their passion. Their life.
It was eighteen years earlier that I had first met Mrs Page. A cursory scan of her brain had given me her name, even then, before I truly started to explore my skills. Eighteen years ago, I was only discovering my power, and was nowhere near finding its limits.
When I first met Mrs Page, it had only been for a few seconds, but that few seconds would go on to define two entire lives. I had been testing out my talent – she was as attractive then as she was now, and had easily caught my attention. I had learned to read surface information, and had quickly ascertained that she was a mother.
If I’d stopped to do the math, I probably wouldn’t have proceeded. I’m not a pervert (well – not that kind of pervert) but I was probably still high off the buzz of altering my own mother, and must have simply thought that I should share the joy.
Six words. That’s all it took. Nowadays I’m subtler, but there’s something to admire in the stark simplicity of it. If I was altering her today, I would have cluttered it up, buried it a little, and included some additional commands to email me regularly with updates, photos. But eighteen years ago, I simply added six new words, one thought, and I was on my way.
She probably didn’t even notice me. If she did, it was just a fleeting thought, wondering what one so young was doing with a gold tooth. There was no eye contact, nothing to separate me from anyone else in the crowd. Nothing to suggest that I was responsible for defining her entire life from now on.
Now, sitting beside her in the cab, enjoying the warmth of her mouth as she “got me ready”, I took a trip down her memory lane, and saw how those 6 words had changed everything. How one thought had gotten her from respectable-looking young mother, to the woman who was practically coming, just from knowing I was hard.