She stopped, the voice was familiar but she couldn't quite place it. Emily scanned the bar in the direction of the shout and saw a man waving frantically at her, and wandered over hesitantly.
"Em, it's me, fucking hell, you know, Abigail's brother!"
"Jonny? Oh my God!" She returned his hug warmly, slightly embarrassed when she noticed an attractive and smartly dressed woman sitting next to him, regarding her suspiciously.
The man snorted when he noticed this. "Oh, don't worry about her." He waved his hand dismissively at the other woman without even looking at her, "fuck off now, pet, I've got something more important to do."
Emily started, but the pretty companion just flushed a little, looking excited if anything, as she silently collected her things and left.
He patted the vacated seat and she sat down without thinking. "Christ, Johnny! How could you talk to her like that?"
A flicker of embarrassment passed over his face, but it was quickly replaced with a wicked smile. "Oh, hmm, well she likes it when I treat her like crap."
Emily wasn't sure how to take this: last time she'd seen him, he'd been a kid leaving for university, all long hair and skinny jeans with holes in the knees. Now he was mature and confident, and seemed to be having the lifestyle they'd shared bright-eyed jokes about when they were growing up. She leaned over and whispered, "Is she your slave or something, Jonny?"
He laughed, "Sure, Em, one of them, and by the way, I prefer to be called Jon now."
"Not Sir Jon?"
He flicked a whip of a glance at her that made her feel uncomfortably chastised. "Not yet."
She couldn't seem to think of a retort, even though she'd always teased him mercilessly, so just shrugged it off as best she could. "Soooo... how's it going? You're looking great!"
He looked genuinely pleased, showing a hint of the boy she'd known, keen to impress her. "Oh, it's amazing, I've got a job with a little record label doing marketing, they seem to be going the right way, thanks to me of course," he winked, but she could believe it. He'd always had charm and enthusiasm to spare, and had apparently developed notable persuasive skills to match.
As they chatted about their work, Emily kept thinking about the look on the slave's face. She'd looked aroused, of course, but also at peace, almost shining, as if she was having a religious experience. What could her best friend's little brother have done to that sophisticated woman to make her submit so deeply?
The conversation lulled, and Jon looked at her sideways. "Go on, ask," he said.
Emily looked down, but a smile crept across her face, "Um... so, you have slaves now?"
He leant in conspiratorially, and she was very aware of his body against her, his heat invading her. "Slaves, submissives, pets, it's different for each of my girls."
She let out a sigh, now resigned to the fact that the boy she used to help with his homework was making arousal flare through her. "Can we just assume I gave you some chat about ethics and respecting women and move on to the 'Oh my God!'"
Jon chuckled, "Heh, it's not that big a deal, you know I've always been into stuff like this, you saw my bookshelf at home," and borrowed books and masturbated to them, "I met some people into it at Uni and realised that I can just see what someone needs and give it to them in a way that benefits me as well."
His casual tone made his words all the more affecting. What might he be able to use to manipulate her in the direction he wanted? "Erm, so, do you have a 24/7 thing with anyone?"
He looked away, retreated a little, "Eh, no, they're all pretty independent really, we just play around occasionally."
There was a long silence, as they both considered how much more to say. Eventually, Jon stood up and held out his hand. "Look, this is ridiculous, take me back to yours and I'll seduce you."
Emily laughed in surprise, but took his hand anyway. "Well, you can try, kid..."
He helped her into her coat and murmured in her ear, "No, you'll be easy, you just want to be hypnotised." She stumbled a little but he caught her.
Jon had been to her flat before, but it felt different this time. She was worried whether she'd left anything embarrassing out, but he wouldn't have cared, just started rifling through her CDs as usual. The odd mix of familiarity and strangeness made her uncertain how to behave.
Her guest seemed to sense this and beamed up at her. "Hey, Emmy, it's just me, you can trust me, I'm safe."
She chuckled and relaxed in her chair, before tensing again in case he was trying to soften her up.
He came and sat near to her, held her hand and looked seriously into her eyes. "I promise, I'm only going to do things you want me to, I just want to make you feel good."
She broke his gaze and looked down. "Oh, I know, it's just... scary."
He was stroking her hand rhythmically with his thumb, "it shouldn't be, it's not like I haven't hypnotised you before."
Her head shot up, "Huh? No you haven't!"
Their eyes locked again, this time he wasn't letting go. "Yeah, sure I have, you remember, when I used to babysit you."
"Wh-what? You've got that the wrong way..."
"Shh, Emmy, you're just tired and confused."
The flickers of pleasure in her groin that followed his words were indeed making it hard to think. It would be so nice to believe any reality he created for her, and this one was soft and appealing...
"It's OK, just let me explain it to you again," his stroking became a circling, slowing imperceptibly with every word, "deep down, you know I've been looking after you for years, just a little bit older and wiser, someone you look up to, to guide you, to keep you safe while you fall asleep..."
Her eyelids drooped, she was starting to feel like a sleepy little girl, he did seem older than her, a gentle authority figure.
"That's right, good girl, you won't be any trouble for me, will you? Deep down you know how much you enjoyed it when I swung those pretty pendants for you, sending you off into dreamland..."
Emily moaned, there was something so sick and hot about this, how could he possibly know all the right buttons to push? Such a dark, hidden little fantasy, she hadn't even admitted it to herself, but it was all rising to the surface, overflowing with pure need.
Jon slipped an arm under her knees and round her back. "Time for bed, sleepy Emmy, now hold on tight."
She did as she was told, feeling fuzzy and warm, as if she'd fallen asleep on the back seat of her parents' car. As she was laid on the bed, she seemed to sink forever, there were voices, hers and his, but she was too pleasantly drifty to make out what they were talking about. It didn't matter, she was safe with him looking after her, he was in charge, he'd always been in charge, deep down she knew that.