Gay Men Turned Straight
Doug’s developed a mind control medicine. Mike knows how to use it.
Doug didn’t sigh at the request; that would’ve been impolite. He forced himself to be content with a quick prayer at the ceiling. “I’m not turning you straight, Mike.”
“C’mon,” Mike whined. “It’s temporary!”
“It’s fantasy,” Doug said. “And not a healthy one. Jesus, you’re asking me to do conversion therapy! People like us have died—”
“There’s a big difference between me,” Mike said, putting a palm to his chest, “An avowed homosexual, versus shitty Evangelicals in Nebraska who torture teens.” His eyes twinkled behind heavy eyebrows. If not for the equally thick beard, they would’ve been the defining feature of Mike’s face.
He looked mature, but he thought Mike was anything but. He tried to ignore the stare by sipping his water, glancing at the clock, and kneading some cookie crumbs between his finger and thumb. Insignificant things are fascinating to someone who doesn’t want part in a conversation.
They stood together. Mike in his underwear, Doug in a suit. Mike with perfect vision, Doug with glasses. Fatass, hairy Mike, and fit hairless Doug. They were opposites in most regards, but this was new.
“Ask someone else.”
“Oh, yeah.” Mike’s turn to roll his eyes. “I’ll ask the other guy I know that made a mind-fuck drug.”
Despite the privacy of Mike’s kitchen, Doug whispered. “Who’s that?”
“Nobody, dumbass!” Mike said. “You’re the first to invent this shit, unless the government’s involved,” Doug grumbled about society being different if they were, but Mike kept on. “At least I’m asking for it—that’s more than anyone you’ve done so far.”
That was enough to get under Doug’s skin. “That’s different.”
Mike leaned forward dangerously. “You made Hendricks gay.”
Henry Hendricks was someone they spoke of often. The first victim. An asshole, someone who wanted to hurt people. Threatened everyone he met like a living disaster, but good lord, he was hot.
Muscled, tanned, chiseled, and since Doug’s tinkering, only increasingly so. It’d been impossible to think of Henry Hendricks in that light, but with that personality altered… Mike and Doug adored the new Henry.
This wouldn’t be the same. No vindictive catharsis, and certainly less butt-fucking.
They were hypocrites. Mike was open to being hypnotized without asking and for Doug, resistance was half the appeal. Changing mindsets was attractive regardless of the subject’s interests, with “what about consent?” as a convenient go-to for jettisoning taboo thoughts.
Consent didn’t matter to either of them. Not to the finger-wagging one or active-brainwasher other. Realizing such, they let go of that argument.
“We aren’t ISIS or a religious death camp. Congratulations to us.” Doug said. “This still sets a bad precedent. There’s history.”
“A little late to think about morals,” Mike said, but that wouldn’t convince Doug. “And there is no history to this shit. What they do isn’t mind control, it’s torture. Torturing kids, mostly. We make guys feel good from beginning to end.”
The brainwashing was pleasurable. Amazing, actually—there was no sensation so positively affirming, addicting, or arousing as being controlled. It was a fantastical freedom with good feelings untold, at the cost of free will. Smiles and boners. In stories, there was the thought of someone “still being in there,” but given their experiences, both men knew that was false. At least, using Doug’s serum.
Being effected by the serum wouldn’t lead to a person screaming inside, railing against whatever situations they find themselves in. Quite the opposite: oblivious, airy, simplified, dulled ever-so-slightly. Unable to process anything that goes against orders. No snapping out of it, and no memory of the events. Under the distributor’s power.
Doug rubbed his temples, trying to deafen the points he was imagining against his own half of the debate. “You didn’t address setting a bad precedent.”
“I didn’t because it’s bullshit.” Mike replied, pouring himself a fresh coffee. He would’ve offered some, but they were close enough to know Doug’s distaste for caffeine. “Slippery slope arguments are bullshit without exception.” When Mike had his back turned, he poured sugar and some liquid in it.
“In most cases,” Doug said. “But not if there’s a clear connection between start and end.”
“What’s the start?”
“I relent and use mind control to turn you straight. Turn anyone straight.”
“And the end?”
“I dunno, it gets out of hand, someone says something—” Doug fumbled, moving his hands in the air wildly. “Next thing you know, my method’s being trained on gay men everywhere. Everyone gay man on the planet’s brainwashed into a heterosexual.”
“Or I like it so much that it gets permanent,” Mike said.
Doug smiled. “Right.”
Doug frowned. “Wrong.”
Mike moved into the living room and Doug followed. They took separate sides of the couch as territories, still sipping their afternoon drinks. “The whole world turns into cocksuckers or rubber pups and they say how hot it is. A bit of world domination here and suddenly we’re up-in-arms.”
“What, you gonna argue it’s okay to use the n-word next?”
Doug raised his hands defensively. “You started it. Do better than boohooing about how you are and aren’t policed and it being unfair. Straight people are the majority. Oppressors. They’ve killed us, and you’re suggesting eradicating—”
“Fuck, shut up,” Mike said. He turned on the TV for news, but it was muted. “You gonna bust the balls of everyone who wants to bone a straight celeb too?”
“No, unless they’re being predatory. This counts as predatory.”
“I’m the prey,” Mike butted back. “I’m a gay guy—”
“Who wants to turn straight.” Doug nodded, growing more confident and collected. Slowly cornering his opponent. “And once you are, you’ve lost the right to pull that card.”
Mike took a deep glug of coffee to sort his thoughts. “There’s nothing inherently wrong with heterosexuals or heterosexuality.”
“Some would disagree, but, opinions. And?”
“If that’s true, there shouldn’t be negatives to becoming one.” Cutting off Doug before he could speak, Mike added, “And don’t say you give a fuck about preserving identities or something, you hypno-fetishizing fucker.” Doug almost spoke again. “Or argue about how it’s not about me being okay with it, it’s about the world.”
For a minute, Doug rolled his head on his shoulders, weighing what to say. Letting the room breathe. “You’re saying if someone’s into mind control, they’re already corrupt. If they’re not, they’ll find mind control creepy anyway, so indulge whatever fantasies we want.”
Mike shrugged. “I guess.”
Doug looked at Mike. “Can’t do that. We need standards. What if we started talking about brainwashing men into being pedophiles?” Mike grimaced, and Doug tried to carry this point onwards, but the TV distracted them.
Nothing important, ultimately, but it let Mike chew on responses. “That last thing’s just another slippery slope fallacy. Normalizing my kinks doesn’t mean pedos get rights.”
“Yeah, sorry.” Doug said. “That one was reaching.”
The two of them sat on their asses watching TV, batting the burden of proof back and forth like a tennis ball. They settled their differences briefly to have a pizza, but the food gave them energy to discuss things further.
At this point, Doug was dressed casually. Shirt, yoga pants and socks. Mike remained the same. “We’ve been talking about all of these things theoretically,” Doug said. “But mind control’s real.”
“Yeah, but I was thinking about what you said—world domination and all? Maybe something to worry about, but the serum can’t zonk too many dudes at once. Not like setting up a doofy spiral on TV to change people.” Mike scratched his balls.
“If the serum’s mass-produced enough, or a breakthrough occurs to expand effectiveness and exposure… More theoreticals. Missing the point.”
“This is real. There are real consequences. Something horrible could happen.”
Mike put his head on Doug’s shoulder in a show of faux affection, fluttering his eyes like a silver screen heroine. “Horrible things with mind control are always hot, so that’s not a big concern. For me.” Doug nudged him off with a glower. “Let’s assume I’m right, you’re wrong, and everything I’m saying is correct. Gay-to-straight is good shit.”
“I’m listening,” Doug said, distracted by the TV.
“What about the bad people we’ve brought up? Evangelicals and shit. They see it, and it empowers them. Look, everyone, they themselves want conversion therapy!” Mike straightened himself slightly. “It’s not conversion therapy, but they’d take it that way. It’s not about them being wrong, it’s about that empowerment of bad people.”
Doug, finally, removed his glasses, then his shirt, then he put his glasses back on, but not the shirt. His eyes never left the TV, but he’d been listening. “That,” Doug replied, “Is silly.”
“Because fuck them, that’s why.” Doug cradled a fresh slice of pizza. “You’re describing people acting in bad faith. We don’t avoid things because shitty un-Christian fucktards might use it against us. Besides, their methodology and desires are completely different.”
“Fucktards is a good word.”
“Thank you.” Doug ate his pizza, and Mike did too.
More time passed, and the conversation lulled increasingly, until the only noise came from the TV. Mike broke first. “I think I said everything I could think of.”
“Sure,” Doug said, patting Mike on his wide shoulder.
“So… Will you do it?” Mike touched Doug’s arm, staring pleadingly.
Doug released a short laugh through his nose. “No. You forgot an important aspect.”
His hand was pulled closer, flirtatiously, with the smell of Italian-American cuisine lingering between them. Another hand found Mike’s hirsute thigh. “I have control. If I don’t want to brainwash you, then we’re not doing it.”
Mike smirked, challenging the muscleman. “Unless I make you.”
“Without the serum?” Doug said, returning the smirk. A smirking contest for who would stop the smug grin first.
“Who said I didn’t have any serum?” Doug lost. “I drank it with my coffee an hour ago.” Mike said, slapping his gurgling gut. “After a few whiffs of what I have cookin’, you’ll see things my way.”
Doug wasn’t given time to react.