Chapter 1: Computer Problem
A company has a unique way to protect its computers, What happens when an employee installs it on his computer and is accidentally activated by his neighbor?
I started this story as a one-shot of sorts, but it ended up as a long one. This is also my first ‘real’ attempt at doing something that is more plot driven. Any feedback is appreciated!
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Chapter 1: Computer Problem
It was a sunny day in the neighborhood. James was out on his front porch enjoying the fresh breeze of the morning as he was enjoying his mug of hot coffee. He was prepared to spend the rest of the alone seeing that he didn’t have any work to do and that his wife has already left for work. He was about to head inside to refill his mug when a van parked by the next-door house. Its been local news that someone was moving in to their neighborhood, with moving trucks coming by every now and then to refurbish the house next door.
When the van was parked and stopped, a tall lanky man stepped out. He was wearing sweater and grey sweatpants that hangs loosely on the man’s skinny frame. He had curly brown hair, with eyes of the same color hidden behind a pair of glasses. The man went to the back of the van and began to examine its contents.
Being the kind man that he is, James left his mug on the bench and stood up to approach the man by the van. Once he stood close enough, he wore a charming smile and greeted him.
“Hey man, good morning! You must be the new neighbor”
The lanky man looked at James before returning the smile. “Oh yes. My name’s Noah, nice to meet you!”. As he introduced himself, he held out his hand to James.
James then took Noah’s hand to shake it and said, “My name’s James, nice to meet you too! I live in the house next-door with my wife. She isn’t here right now but she would have loved to meet you, she loves meeting new people”
After they exchange pleasantries and basic information, James eyes went to the back of Noah’s van which contained boxes of what he thinks are the personal belongings of his new neighbor.
“Um hey, do you need help moving those boxes in? I could help out if you want?” James offered
“Sure, that would be appreciated” Noah smiled thankfully and began to move his belongings out of the van.
As the move to empty the van, James began drilling on his new neighbor about all sorts of things. By the end of it he managed to learn that Noah was just freshly graduated from college and moved out from his parents’ house to this neighborhood for career purposes, something about work being closer from here (work being something about computers and security). Noah did the same drilling and James willingly gave out information. He mentioned his job, 2-year relationship with his wife, and the last person that lived in Noah’s house among other things.
While James was busy moving the boxes from the van, he didn’t notice the glances that Noah has been giving him. The new neighbor couldn’t keep his eyes away from James’ built body as it moves around. It also doesn’t help that James was still in his sleepwear, which consisted of a white, tight-fitting tank-top that hugs his muscular upper body, and a pair of boxer shorts which shows off his toned legs and butt. It was even harder not to stare at James’ pretty face which was topped by his cut blond hair which was matched by his own pair of blue eyes. Noah was basically drooling and blushing over the married sex-on-a-stick that was helping him move.
Once the final box has been set inside the house, the two men sat down on the sofa to rest for a bit.
After a while, James stood up and said “Well I should head back now, busy day ahead”
Noah stood up beside him and said “Sure, go ahead. Thanks again for helping me move these boxes”
James smiled and said “No problem man! Hey, if you need any fixing around here just give me a call! I am the local handyman around these parts after all. I can fix anything; may it be electrical or plumbing”
“I’ll keep that in mind” Noah said while ushering his neighbor to the door. With one final goodbye, James went back to his house, not noticing the long stare his new neighbor gave him on his way back.
It’s been a couple of months since Noah has moved and he quickly became one of the most known people in the neighborhood. From the occasional offer of his extra food to neighbors, to doing favors like helping other people with cleaning their yards, he quickly gained a reputation of being a nice guy overall. Even James and his wife were charmed by the new addition to the neighborhood. They quickly developed a liking to the new guy after a couple of good conversations and dinners with one another.
It was all going well until one sunny day, Noah called on James for some help on the house. It’s been a long day for the handyman as he already went to 3 separate houses before heading to Noah’s house for the repairs he needed. It was already late in the afternoon when he got to his last destination.
James parked his custom made ‘repair van’ (with name, logo, and number on it) by his house before walking towards the neighboring one, carrying his toolbox. He’s wearing a plain shirt, a pair of rugged jeans, and a belt that carries some of his tools. He knocked on the door and after waiting for a while the door opened to reveal his lanky neighbor.
“Hey James! Glad you could make it” Noah said with a smile. He the moved out of the way to usher in his neighbor/repairman inside his house.
“Pleasures all mine! What seems to be the problem?”
“Well, the kitchen sink has been leaking recently. I’d just wake up in the morning with the kitchen floors all wet. And then there’s this wiring issue with one of the outlets upstairs” said Noah while leading James towards the kitchen.
Once they arrived in the kitchen, James went to the sink to inspect the problem.
Seeing his neighbor starting his work, Noah said “I’ll be in the living room. Just tell me in you need something or if you want to go to the outlet one”. Without batting an eye, James said “Sure thing”. He was so focused, in fact, that he didn’t notice Noah staring at him for a few minutes before heading to his living room.
A few screws and a pipe changing later, James was all done with the sink. He put his tools back in his tool box and went to the living room. Noah was seen on his sofa, typing something on his laptop. He lightly knocked on the wall and got Noah’s attention.
“Sink’s all done!” James said with a smile to his neighbor.
“Oh, thank you” Noah said while placing his laptop on the coffee table by the sofa. He then stood up and said “Let’s head upstairs, the outlet is in my work room”
They climbed up the stairs and entered of the rooms just by Noah’s bedroom. Noah opened the lights and what greeted them was a clutter of wire and other tech related things. On one side of the room was a desk with a sophisticated looking computer.
“Sorry about the mess. I just can’t keep this place clean” Noah says while leading James to the desk with the computer.
Once they were in front of it, Noah began to say what was wrong with it. “I was just working here last night when the computer suddenly turned off on me. I checked the computer and seemed like nothing was wrong with it. But when I tried to use the outlet for something else, it wouldn’t work. Maybe something with the wiring went wrong?”
Noah removed the chair inside the desk and James kneeled down to the outlet under the desk and observed it for a bit. “It is possible that the wires in this deteriorated or something. Its been quite some time before anyone live in this house”
“That what I was thinking. I was just too scared to check on it myself. I may be a ‘tech geek’, but that only works on gadgets. House wires are a whole different thing for me”
James laughed and said, “Well let’s see what I can do about it”. he then went by his tools to begin working.
Noah began to leave the room as his neighbor began his work yet again. After another long glance at his hot neighbor, he said “If you need me, I’ll just be downstairs”.
James began to work his magic on repairing the outlet. As they both suspected, it was indeed due to an old wire that finally gave up. It also doesn’t help that some screws were loose inside the outlet itself. After a few minutes, he finished and was just cleaning up his tools. Before he planned to leave, he plugged Noah’s computer back in the outlet, just as it was before he started working on it.
To his surprise, the computer began running. He stood up and saw the monitor starting up just like any other computer. Then suddenly, the screen began to flash different colors at varying intensity. He was taken back by the sudden intrusion of the colors, but seconds after, he just started to look at it. Normally this would be painful to James’ eyes, but somehow, he just stared at it. It was as if the lights and colors were seducing him. His plans to yell out for Noah quickly dissolved in his head as his thoughts were replace by the dancing colors.
Noah was hard at work downstairs. As part of the IT team of a local company, his work involved working with computers all day. But it was different with his situation now. Codes and programs that could have been done in a few minutes in his regular computer took way longer on his old laptop that he was currently using. It came in handy as his computer was out of commission at the moment but at the cost of being frustrated at the way his old laptop was lagging almost all the time.
After feeling his body being sore, Noah puts his laptop on the coffee table and began to stretch. As he was trying to ease his tense muscles (if he had any), his eyes went to the clock that hung on the wall in front of him. It was almost an hour after Noah left James to work on the outlet in his work room. Noah got confused as it didn’t take James that long to fix the kitchen sink, and it was the heavier work of the two. He was about to check on him but decided not to. Choosing not to interrupt his neighbor on his job.
He sat back down and prepared for another long battle with lag just to secure the company’s online information.
James was still looking at the flashing lights of the computer in front of him. Any semblance of thought has left his mind and his sole focus was the changing colors being shown in the screen, with his blue eyes dazed and his jaw dropped. His mind has lost track of time and forgot how long he has been staring at the monitor. His whole body has gone slack at this point, with his legs barely holding him up. After a few more flashes, his mind surrendered further and his knees gave up, causing him to immediately drop. But instead of reacting to the sudden fall, the muscled repairman just continued to stare on the computer, while now kneeling on the floor.
Noah, meanwhile, is still been working downstairs. Being a workaholic was one of Noah’s strengths, and admittedly one of his weaknesses. He could go on for hours working on something and wouldn’t stop until someone or something else stops him. He was just that dedicated to finishing something.
After feeling his body ache again, he puts his laptop on the coffee table and began to stretch once more. As he was stretching, his eyes went to the wall clock again and saw it was almost 2 hours since James began his work upstairs. Its been so long that the sun was already setting and it was starting to get dark.
Then suddenly Noah heard a loud thump coming from upstairs.
“James? You alright up there?” Noah called out for his neighbor, but to no avail. He then decided to check on his neighbor to see if everything is alright.
When Noah got to his study room, what him was the sight of his muscled neighbor kneeling in front of his now working computer that was flashing different colors.
“Oh shit!”. Noah then quickly ran to the computer, careful not to look at the screen. He went beside James as he began typing a certain code and the colors stopped flashing on the screen. The monitor was now displaying the default desktop of Noah’s set-up. The lights were the ‘PC security system’ that the company provided. Seeing that the whole company Noah was working could basically be ruined by just one wrong information leak, they took security to a whole new level. Those lights were designed to disarm any stranger that would attempt to access their IT team’s personal computer like a virtual pepper spray. It would do no real damage, at least that was what he was told.
“That sudden shut down the night before must have triggered the alarm system” Noah said as he was starting to check if anything else went wrong with the programs in his computer. All the while not noticing the drooling hunk beside him that still has the dazed look in his eyes.
“Oh thank God that code got auto-saved! It would be a pain to do it aga—” Noah began to talk again but immediately stopped as his eyes met his neighbor’s.
“J-james?” A-are you o-okay?” Noah asked, worried.
“A-a-lright…” came the slurred response of James.
Noah was outright panicking in his head right. ‘What happened here?’ he asked himself.
“H-how long were you staring at the c-computer?” He asked nervously
“O-o-one hour, t-thirty-seven minutes, and e-eighteen seconds” Answered James, still staring on the screen as if the colors are still flashing.
Noah stood up and began pacing in the room. ‘Oh crap! His brain is fried! What do I do? What do I do? What do I do?’
After a few minutes of overthinking, Noah clamed himself down and began to think of a way to fix his current problem.
He kneeled beside James and said, “What your name?”
“James Smith” came his reply, no longer sluggish, but still monotonous.
Noah just continued to ask him random questions. “How old are you?”
“Are you married?”
As James answered his questions mindlessly, Noah can’t help but stare at his dazed neighbor’s face. His calm, relaxed face just made him somewhat hotter for Noah, who was already struggling with his crush on this married neighbor. After he has asked James numerous other questions, he confirmed to himself that he still has his memories intact. He then moved on to other tests.
“How do you feel right now?”
“Calm, relaxed, empty, thoughtless” Came his response. Noah stared at his handsome face before moving on to other questions.
“Why don’t you stand up for me?”
James just stood up immediately, effectively surprising Noah, almost making him lose his balance. James was now standing straight and looking ahead. Noah slowly stood up and went in front of the dazed man. Noah was never this up close to James, and it confirmed that Noah was indeed taller than his much buffer neighbor by just a few inches.
“Why did you stand up?” Noah asked as he started to slowly circle his neighbor as if to assess his body.
“Because you asked me to” Came his neighbors monotonous voice.
“Why is that?” Noah asked, more curious for his answer.
“Because my mind is empty”
Noah was once again standing in front of his neighbor, eyeballing his upper body.
“Flex for me” he commanded. The dazed hunk then silently did a double bicep pose, not minding the eyes that was roaming his body.
“Its okay for me to touch you, right James?” Noah as curiously.
“Yes” came the dull answer.
Noah then carefully touched his neighbor’s biceps with his hands, as if unsure of anything that has been happening. After a few seconds of no violent reaction from his neighbor, Noah got a little braver and began to fully worship the muscles with his hands. It was like a dream come true. He massaged and caressed the muscles for quite some time before he managed to gain enough thought to stop himself. He couldn’t stop himself from admiring the muscle squeezed in a tight-fitting shirt that was in front of him. He then thought of a new test to try.
“James, make out with me as if I’m Eunice”
Once Noah finished his sentence James quickly locked him in a tight embrace and began to kiss him passionately. His muscles, though big and intimidating, are actually quite comfy and he was being gentle with his kiss. James was a very good kisser, making Noah fall in love with him more. Their slow, romantic kiss began to get heated, with James’ hands now cupping Noah’s face. Noah then got a glace of James’ wedding ring as he reached for his face and felt guilty all of a sudden. Noah was starting to be afraid and guilty of what might happen next so he decided to stop him. It took him all his strength to push him away and say, “Stop! Stand straight again!”
James then quickly stopped and stood up straight with his hands on his sides like a soldier. Noah wanted to go further but a voice in his head kept nagging him that it was wrong and that James is already married. He sighed knowing that it was true, but tells himself that he could still enjoy it.
“James, I’m going to count backwards from 10 and when I reach 1, you will wake up and be back into your normal self and not remember anything other than you finishing the job in my house. You will think that the only reason it took you that long to fix the outlet is that the wiring was more complicated than you anticipated. However, every time you hear me say…” Noah paused thinking of a good trigger word. ”… ‘it’s Showtime James’, you will immediately fall back to this deep, relaxed state you are in. Do you understand?”
“Good” Noah was about to count him out but he thought he needed one last test over this ‘state’ his neighbor got in.
“Also, every time you hear me say…‘Mr. Muscles’, you will stop what your doing, strike a body builder pose, and freeze for 10 seconds. Once the 10 seconds has gone by, you will continue what you were doing before as if no time has passed and forget you’ve been frozen. Do you understand?”
Noah breathed deeply before saying “Okay, I’m going to count you out now. 10, 9 ,8…. Feeling so calm and relaxed, 7, 6, 5,… feeling yourself slowly rise from this trance, 4, 3, slowly waking up…, 2…..1”
James then suddenly shakes himself, as if waking up from a long nap. He looked around and saw Noah. He smiled and said “All done! That wiring was tricky though, I should really try and change it sometime”
Noah, still blushing lightly, smiled and said “Maybe next time. Its already late, Eunice might be looking for you now”
“Don’t worry about it, she’s on one of those conferences again. She won’t be back until next week” James said, with an unnoticed sadness in his tone.
Noah then got his wallet out and paid James for his service before leading him to his front door.
“Hey man, thanks again for coming over!” said Noah when they approached the door.
“No problem man. Just call if ever you need something!”
Noah was about to open his door when he remembered the trigger word he put into James.
James then did a one arm flex while flashing his brightest smile and still holding on to his tool box. Noah felt his chest and abs with his hands. The guilty voice in his head woke up once again.
As if a timer went off in James’ head, he stopped posing and got back to his natural posture.
After saying their goodbyes, Noah opened his door to let James out as he watches him walk back to his house. After he closed his door, he sat down on his sofa and asked himself one question over and over.
“What have I done? What have I done? What have I done?”
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