"Finally!" she announced once more before forcing her lips against mine. Even as her tongue danced against mine, her hand was exploring my torso. My hand, on a mission of its own, found a breast and paid tender homage to its prominent terminus.
She pulled her lips away, and the heat of passion escaped as she exhaled softly. Her breath was as hot as a desert wind as it whisked across my neck. Then she half rolled on top of me, her leg draped across my thighs. She remained there, her cheek on my shoulder and I could feel a slight tremble within her body. Her leg pressed hard against me and then it relaxed. With a guttural groan she kissed my neck until the throes of the orgasm had passed.
Soft moans escaped from her throat and her breathing became even. In a trice she fell into a contented but needed sleep. The effects of the reviving shower was only temporary and had given way to the traces of the tranquilizer still within her system.
Not wanting to disturb her I slipped out from under the sheets. She mumbled something as I slid from beneath her arm and leg. Her only other response was to roll over with her back to me. Her bare back and buttocks were inviting, but I was going to have take a rain check. I reached for the sheet and pulled it over her. The soldier who had been standing proudly at attention was at parade rest and would soon be posturing at ease.
When I emerged from the bedroom Michelle was sitting at the table with a glass in her hand. I noticed too that she was holding a lit cigarette in her other. It was apparent that the personality shift within her brain had occurred again.
She turned at my approach and asked, "How is she?"
"She's sleeping soundly. That must have been one powerful tranquilizer," I said in reply. "I think that dart was meant for me. I bent down to put something in my sock. That was when she was hit and thankfully, it just grazed her." I held the folded piece of paper at eye level between us.
She took it and spread it out upon the table in front of her. "Oh, my God!" she exclaimed. One would've thought she'd seen a ghost. Aghast, she looked up at me and asked, "Where did you get this?"
"Susan found it in the glove box of the general's limousine. I'm no electronics expert, but it looks like that thing is equipped with a transmitter and a receiver."
She was shaking her head while her masculine fists clenched and unclenched. She turned the image over and scanned the back of it and uttered, "There's no way of telling if this is just a rendering still on the drawing board, or if it's a prototype or if the thing is already in use."
I shifted in my seat, "I don't think I like the sound of the tone in your voice, Michelle. I don't want to even think what they could do with that thing. It isn't possible." I paused and implored, "Is it?"
With a foreboding nod she replied, "In theory, it is possible, but it would take a lot of expensive research and development. Don't forget, they have almost fathomless resources." She began rubbing her temples and her mouth twisted into a painful grimace.
I watched her as she placed her face into her hands. I tapped the image with my finger and suggested, "Those migraine headaches, perhaps they might be a result of this device being used ..."
"To read my mind?" she said. "Michael and I once discussed the possibility that in the future our research might possibly be enhanced by the use of a remote device." In spite of the obvious pain pounding within her head she uttered, "It would seem that Mr. X and his team might have such a device and it is operational."
"This is not good," I said. "One thing bothers me though," I could see that she knew what I was about to say but allowed me to finish speaking, "If they were transmitting to your brain and thus receiving your thoughts, would there not be a need for transmitters and receivers on both sides?"
Michelle abruptly pushed an ashtray containing a lit cigarette away from her. "Not again!" she exclaimed. There was a curious look on her as she glanced at the sheet of paper upon the table in front of her elbow. She looked at me and asked, "Where did you get this?" Her head bent forward and she cried out. She cupped the sides of her head in her palms and began to press forcibly against her temples.
She rose from the table and hurried over to the bar. From the upper cabinet she produced a bottle of pain pills, shook two of the tablets into her hand and then swallowed them. Reaching again into the cabinet she grabbed the pad of paper on which she'd jotted down apparent chess moves earlier. I watched with casual curiosity as she began scribbling something onto the pad.
Having returned the pills and the pad to the cabinet she spoke slowly to me, "If you'll excuse me, I have to lie down again. These headaches are getting worse and they're longer lasting."
I watched her disappear behind the bedroom door. Her newest migraine attack brought me back to our discussion about the image of the Neuro-headset. Ever since my initial meeting with "Mr. Black" I had been hearing and seeing things I'd thought impossible. I thought nothing else would ever surprise or shock me again. Not only had the possibility of such a remote device shocked me, it terrified me.
As for Michelle's headaches and the transformations of her personality and mannerisms, was it possible someone was transmitting their thoughts into her mind? If that was possible, then it would be reasonable to assume that they could also be extracting her thoughts. The headaches had to be the key. Their occurrence must have been coinciding with the entrances and departures of the invading mind.
If my deductions were correct, then it would explain why the Feds were being so cavalier about my comings and goings. Anything I had been sharing with Michelle, inexplicably I had been sharing with them. Indirectly they were picking my brain.
Hopefully it wasn't too late, but I realized that I just might be able to use their intrusions into Michelle's brain to my advantage. I would need to relegate the information I passed on to Michelle. How it was to be doled out would depend on whether I was talking to the cigarette-smoking personality or the non-smoker!
I walked over to the bar. Those scribblings Michelle had been jotting down on that pad of paper might not have been so cryptic after all. On the surface they appeared to be opening moves for a game of chess as Susan had recognized. I leafed through the pad's pages until I came to the latest entry. There was just one word written there - Camelot. I knew of the Arthurian legend, but the message Michelle was trying to convey remained enigmatic to me.
I glanced across the room and caught sight of "book." According to Michelle those discs contained something that both Susan and I needed to see. She suggested that we should watch them together.
I looked over at the door to the guest bedroom. Susan was probably still asleep and I wasn't going to disturb her. I picked up the book and pressed the secret button to open the hidden compartment in which the discs had been placed. I placed the first one into the disc drawer and while it was loading I felt a craving for a cup of coffee.
Coffee cup in hand, I settled onto the sofa and clicked the play button on the remote. The images that began to appear on the screen were of earlier experiments, as evidenced by the grainy black and white footage. There was plenty of the "steamy stuff" that had been recorded on the other discs I'd already viewed.
Even though there were different couples wearing head pieces and engaged in sexual intercourse, I could see no reason that we had to see the content of the discs. I froze for a moment and did a double take as a familiar face appeared on the screen.
Hitting the pause button, I stared at a young lieutenant standing a few feet away from a couple being fitted with headpieces. There was no denying it. It was our illustrious general, forty some odd years younger. I hit play to resume. My jaw almost dropped into my cup of coffee. Next to the young officer was an enlisted man. His features were unmistakable. It was then PFC Jimmy Coleman, my murdered neighbor!
I was still trying to digest Jimmy's presence when a sergeant joined them on screen. I knew I shouldn't have been surprised. They had served together in Southeast Asia. Brock O'Day's rough chisled face was glancing back at the camera, giving the impression he was looking directly at me.
The young man had position himself onto his back upon a flat surface. He grabbed his dog tags, moved them from his chest and then dropped them over his shoulder. The unclothed young woman, obviously Vietnamese, stood over the G.I. with her feet planted on either side of his naked body. She began to squat but froze in place when Brock's hand grabbed the inside of her left thigh. He leaned forward and twisted his shoulders until he was looking up at the woman's genital area.
I felt a knot in my stomach and I began to grow tense. There was nothing tender about his actions as his finger moved not onto her pubic area but to a point high on the woman's inner thigh. I paused the disc again. I squeezed my eyelids together and opened them, hoping beyond hope that my eyes had been playing tricks on me. No, there was nothing wrong with my eyesight. There was in fact a tattoo of a butterfly!
It was with subdued resolve that I began watching the disks again. Much of the first disc was more of the same but with different American soldiers and Vietnamese women engaged in the sexual act. Each of the women in succession also bore the identical tattoos on the same area of their bodies.
The second disc was recorded in color, although the quality was not good. From the appearance of the men and women, each with long hair and peace signs on chains about their necks, it was easy enough to determine that I was watching experiments that were being conducted in the mid to late 60s.
When I was about half way through the third disc, which had been recording experiments within the last eight to ten years, I was about to stop the disc. I dropped the remote and it fell onto the floor. I wanted to turn away. I could not. I was paralyzed in utter shock. Even though I was trembling with a whole range of emotions, I managed to lean forward to pick up the remote. I clicked the power button and shut off the player.
Who were these people?
It couldn't be. It was impossible! It was seeing it before my own eyes. I could see it, but I refused to believe it!
(To be continued in part 24 on Monday, 2/16, with Was It Good For You Too?)