Faking It

Colt takes “fake it ’til you make it” a bit too far when he starts going to the gym and pretending to become a dumb jock in order to corrupt his otherwise nerdy roommate into actually becoming a dumb jock.

There was a time that being an ancient soul in the body of a child felt like a unique hell to the creature now known as Colt. No longer. Through lifetimes, he’d learned to enjoy those early and innocent days, the ability to be care-free even if it was just for a few years.

That chapter of this life had closed now, though. Colt was 18, and he had his sights set on college. He’d had the opportunity to go during his last life, but the breakout of war had swept him along in its violent tide.

Growing up in a small, rural town meant that Colt couldn’t really do the things that he wanted to do. Going off to university was his chance to really stretch his legs and spread his wings—figuratively, of course.

Stepping out of the rickety rust-bucket his dad had bought him for his 18th, Colt looked up at the cerulean sky and stretched his arms over his head with a grunt. He placed a hand on his nape as he cracked his neck to either side. A small smirk tugged at the corner of his lips. He was excited.

Colt bent over the side of the car and looked at his reflection in the side-mirror. Bright blue eyes stared back at him, sparkling eagerly in anticipation of new experiences. He traced his thumb along the angle of his jaw and gently touched the faint divot in his cheek from the smirk tugging at his lips. Gods. He’d won the genetic lottery in this life, that was for sure.

Around Colt, a few other students were pulling into the parking lot. A small number were accompanied by their families. There were lots of tears and encouragement and all that, but Colt didn’t much care. None of the guys were particularly cute, either.

Colt walked around to the passenger side of the car. He opened the door and retrieved his backpack, slinging it over one shoulder. Everything he owned, at least the stuff that was important to him, could fit in his backpack. The rest of it—his clothes in particular—was in the small suitcase in the trunk.

The suitcase’s wheels rattled across the asphalt of the parking lot as Colt made his way up to the dorm. He couldn’t help but wonder what his roommate would be like. He hoped the boy would be cute because there was nothing he wanted more than turning a pretty guy into a lump of clay in his hands.

Colt’s walk up to his room was rather uneventful. Most everyone was too busy moving in to strike up a conversation in any meaningful way. The corridors were too packed to stop without pissing anyone off, anyway.

The room was empty when Colt entered. He’d been hoping that his roommate would be in so he could get a quick impression, so he was a bit disappointed. At the same time, though, he wasn’t complaining if he got first dibs on everything.

The yet-unnamed roommate didn’t arrive until a few hours later, well after Colt had eaten dinner. He was just sitting on his bed, watching videos on his laptop when he heard a timid knock on the door. "It’s open!" he called out.

The door opened a crack and a cute glasses-wearing brunet peeked in. "T-This is Room 314, right?" he said. His voice was slightly shrill and nasally as if his balls hadn’t quite dropped yet. He’d only said five words and yet his cheeks were already tinged pink, and his eyes seemed unable to meet Colt’s gaze.

"Says so on the door, doesn’t it?" said Colt, raising an eyebrow. He was tempted to comment on how stupid the question was, but the poor guy seemed mortified enough by the brief interaction that he felt bad for even thinking it.

"O-Oh. Okay…" said the brunet, his cheeks taking on a deeper shade of red. The door closed as he disappeared from sight.

Colt sat up straighter in bed. There was a lot of shuffling about just outside the door. He had to admit, his roommate was at least interesting.

A few seconds later, the door opened again and the brunet sheepishly walked in with his two backpacks and two suitcases. "S-Sorry about all of this," he said. "M-My mom insisted I-I bring all of this. A-And I-I’m still having a few more boxes dropped by tomorrow."

"Jesus, man. You bringing the kitchen sink, too?" said Colt. He shook his head, suppressing a laugh. It was adorable that this guy thought it was necessary to justify himself. A part of Colt wanted to be mean, but the brunet was sort of his type. "Anyway, it’s fine, man. Can’t judge. I’m Colt."

"B-Brady," said the brunet. "A-Are you sure? I-I can probably call and get dad t-to talk mom o-out of s-sending so much stuff over…"

"Relax, man. It can’t be good for you to be so wound up all the time," said Colt. The air seemed to ripple as he pushed his glamour into his words.

Colt was so out of practice with using his abilities that he suffused his words with more power than he’d intended. He could feel the glamour whisper across his chest, the sensation not unlike the feeling of pale moonlight shining down on one’s skin on a cloudless night.

There was no arguing with the effects, though. The tension in Brady’s shoulders melted away as he sat down on his bed, facing Colt. A quiet sigh slipped past his lips as he pushed his glasses up the bridge of his nose. "Y-Yeah… Y-You’re right… Sorry…" he muttered.

Colt rubbed his hand against his thigh. His words had affected him, too. It wasn’t like it hadn’t happened before, but he’d always found it weird and strangely tingly when his glamour got directed back at him. It wasn’t exactly uncomfortable, just… unusual. "Anyway, nice to meet you, Brady," said Colt, extending his hand across the space between their beds.

"U-Um… I-It’s nice to meet you too, Colt," said Brady. The handshake lingered a few moments too long. That was Colt’s fault. Brady was too timid to let go before Colt did, though. It was adorable. "U-Um, t-thanks, by the way, f-for not being a n-nightmare, I-I guess."

"Don’t mention it, man."

A single mote of glimmering silver drifted in and out of the spaces between Colt’s fingers as he held his hand out in front of his face. He wasn’t too concerned that Brady would see it since the cute nerd was a mortal and didn’t have the Sight as far as Colt could tell.

Colt was a rare creature, born to human parents but possessed of fey blood. He wouldn’t have known he was any different if not for the memories that flooded into him, expanding his awareness far beyond his age, when he was but a child of barely six years’ age.

Colt’s kind was one of the few fey clans that remained in the human world—long after all the others had departed to their own realms. They had lived among mankind for so long, separated by miles and by lives, that hardly any of them remembered what their people were even supposed to be called. He didn’t.

"Where did you go today? I-If you don’t mind my asking," said Brady. He’d been sitting on his bed, playing games on his phone for the last hour, so it was a surprise to hear him speak.

Looking up, Colt noticed that Brady had lowered his phone into his lap. Adorable. He’d come to understand that there were two types of conversation with Brady, detached ones that usually occurred when Brady was doing something else, and ones where Brady usually stopped everything and paid very close attention to whatever was being said.

This seemed to be one of the latter. It was a rare enough occurrence that Colt relished the opportunity. "I visited an old friend," he said. "I used to live in the area when I was young and there was an old man that I got along with really well. I dropped by today to see how he was doing."

A small smile tugged at the corner of Colt’s lips. Brady didn’t need to know that "used to live in the area when I was young," meant, "I lived here in a previous life."

The "old man" Colt had visited was a broker and a banker of sorts. Technically, he was supposed to be a king, but the time when that would have mattered was long gone. Nowadays he held on to the treasures of the fey still in the human world, especially those who were born and reborn time and again like Colt’s people.

"H-How did that go?" said Brady. Conversations with him were always halting and slightly awkward but, bless his heart, he was trying so hard. His mother had probably told him that getting to know other people was a good way to make friends.

Colt closed his fingers, trapping the silver mote in his palm, and rolled over onto his side. He looked over at Brady. "It went well," he said, the corner of his lips curling up in a little smirk. "I got something that I really needed from it, so I’m happy."

Said something was currently pulsing against the skin of Colt’s hand, cool like a gentle night breeze. It was the seed of a Blodyn Arian, a Silver Flower, which Colt would need for his plans.

The flower would come later, though. The first step was establishing a good rapport with Brady. "I-I see," said Brady. A pregnant silence stretched between the two of them. Brady fidgeted in his seat. "U-Um, i-it’s okay if you don’t answer b-but do you ever miss home?"

It had been so long—thousands of years, even. The memories of home had long since faded. What did Annwn look like, again? Colt asked himself. No matter. That wasn’t what Brady was asking about, anyway, though the answer was pretty much the same. It was just the reasons that were different.

"Not really," said Colt. He rolled over onto his back and stared at the ceiling. "It’s not bad if you do, though. I just grew up in a pretty small town. Meant I couldn’t be who I really was. I kinda like being in the big city…"

Colt glanced over at where Brady was sitting. He and his adorable roommate needed to become better friends and it wasn’t difficult to hazard a guess at what might be able to bridge the gap between them. They got along well enough, but Brady was still hesitant. Not for long. "I do miss getting to play D&D with my friends every weekend, though."

The little sparkle in Brady’s eyes as they widened was enough to make Colt’s cock twitch. Forget that playing D&D every weekend was incongruous with living in a small town filled with "Satanic Panic" boomers, the adorable little nerd was all too eager to connect with his roommate that he just accepted the lie at face value.

"Y-You play D&D?" Brady stammered. Disbelief colored his voice, but more than not he sounded hopeful, to Colt. "I-I wouldn’t have guessed but… um… T-That’s awesome! D-Do you usually play o-or do you DM?"

"Dude, I don’t got the creativity to DM," said Colt. Then, in a lower and more conspiratorial voice, he said, "And honestly, I don’t have the patience for all the effort. I’m just glad to play my Aasimar Warlock whenever I get to."

"D-Do you have a favorite class?" said Brady, adorably timid in all the right ways. "M-Mine’s the wizard. I-I always play a wizard when I can."

"No, not really," said Colt. "I just play the Aasimar Warlock because someone beat me to my first choice. I do like bards but I’m perfectly happy playing other classes."

"O-Oh, okay…" Brady’s cheeks took on a tinge of pink. He was twiddling his thumbs nervously for a full minute before he piped up again. "D-Did you know the uni h-has a D&D club? I-I was thinking o-of joining but I got n-nervous… U-Um maybe h-having someone I know there m-might help?"

"Are you asking me to join the D&D club with you?" said Colt. The pink tinge in Brad’s cheeks took on a deeper scarlet shade as Colt raised an eyebrow.

"F-Forget I asked. I-It was a s-stupid question…" Brady stammered, looking away.

"I was just kidding, man," said Colt, barking a laugh. "Fuck, yeah! I’d love to come!"

The first step of Colt’s grand plan—gaining Brady’s trust—was a doozy. Just mentioning that he was even remotely into D&D had been enough to not just break the ice but pulverize the whole damn glacier. It boded well for what was to come.

Brady was pretty much exactly the kind of prey that Colt liked. For the longest time, he’d wanted to use his powers of suggestion to corrupt a pretty, nerdy boy into one of those dull-headed jock types that made a killing in porn. Brady fit the bill in all of the most important ways and that was why Colt couldn’t afford to let him slip out of his grasp.

The mere act of Brady pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose was enough to make Colt’s cock twitch. Colt could scarcely stop thinking of the possibilities, especially now that he’d gotten the ball rolling on Brady’s ultimate fate in his hands.

The first step had almost been too easy, but it wasn’t at all surprising that befriending Brady went quickly. The boy was a kind-hearted soul, to begin with, so there was no intrinsic cynicism that Colt had to navigate his way around.

Brady was just shy, and anxious about social interactions. Once he was comfortable, he came alive with a sort of fire that was so bright as to be almost blinding. It was truly something to see Brady getting into character. It was almost as if he’d truly transformed into another person entirely.

If there was anything that Colt wanted to preserve in Brady after everything was said and done, it was the boy’s love for Dungeons and Dragons. Even though the game had been nothing but a convenient excuse to get closer to Brady, Colt had developed a fondness for it, too. It was his first time playing in any sort of competent group and it was refreshing.

Sure, by the time that Colt was done with Brady, the boy wouldn’t be able to so much as do the simple addition that was required by the game, but that wasn’t too much of an issue from his perspective. It didn’t take a genius to use a calculator, after all. And all the other geeks in the group were gracious enough that Colt was sure they’d help Brady out whenever he needed it.

Between schoolwork and everything else that went on in a normal college student’s life, it was rather remarkable that Colt, Brady, and the rest of their group managed to hold weekly sessions for the first two months of the school year. It was something rare, from what Colt could gather, but he was glad for it. By then Colt had Brady eating out of the palm of his hands, and it was time to move on to the next stage.

All it took was a little comment during some downtime in the game. "You know, buddy, I noticed your character’s quite well-dressed in-game. You want to be like that… right? I can help you if you want," said Colt, while the DM was off in the bathroom.

"O-Oh, no, I-I wouldn’t want to impose… A-And I wouldn’t even know where to start, besides," said Brady, ducking his head in a futile attempt to hide the faint flush of his cheeks.

Cute, Colt thought to himself and left it at that. He’d planted the seed that he wanted to. There was no need to dig any further. "Alright, man," he said. "But if you ever change your mind, just say so, yeah?"

Brady had never been the most appearance-conscious individual so it was to be expected that the suggestion took a while to take hold. All the same, Colt was somewhat startled when, about two weeks later, Brady looked up from his computer and said, "Um, Do you know any good place to buy clothes?"

"Oh, yeah! Come on, I’ll take you," said Colt, jumping up from the bed with his keys in hand. He used his other hand to squeeze Brady’s shoulder and gently push him out of his seat. "Don’t worry. I won’t start you off with something crazy."

"O-Okay," Brady stammered. He’d slowly been getting more confident in himself over the last few weeks, thanks to some suggestions from Colt, but he still wasn’t quite ready to put his foot down. Besides, Colt was pretty sure there was a part of Brady that was glad he was coming along.

Colt pushed Brady out through the door of their dorm room first. Before closing it behind them, he cast a quick look at the silver flower growing from the clay pot on their windowsill. Soon enough, it would be ready, and the next phase of the plan could begin.

Things were slow going, but Colt didn’t mind that. The pursuit was part of the fun and he was enjoying himself. He wanted Brady to revel in his slow transformation, and things were turning out just as Colt wanted them to.

True to his word, Colt didn’t put Brady in anything too outrageous to start with. He got the boy something that made him look smart and sharp. A nice cardigan, a V-neck shirt to complement his jawline, tight-fitting pants to show off his legs, and a pair of shoes that tied the whole outfit together.

To really polish off the new look, Colt managed to convince Brady to get himself a new pair of glasses. The old ones weren’t too bad, but they laid more on the nerdy side of things. The new ones that Colt helped him pick out better fit his facial profile.

If Colt didn’t know better, he would have said that Brady was excited as he cradled the paper bags of their shopping trip in his arms. He had no doubts that Brady was, on some level, eager to see how people would react to him with his new look. That being said, he was sure Brady was more nervous than anything else.

"We have D&D tonight, right?" Colt said as they peeled away from the parking lot. Brady nodded, cheeks tinged pink. "You should put your new outfit on for the game. Showing off to a couple of close friends first is probably best if you’re worried about what other people might think, right?"

"I-I don’t know, Colt," said Brady. Colt glanced over when he heard the crinkling of paper bags getting crushed. Brady had pulled his arms tight against his chest. "M-Maybe this was a bad idea," he said.

"Nonsense," said Colt, making a right as the stoplight turned green. "There’s nothing wrong with wanting to look good, buddy. And besides, you know I’m right. The guys wouldn’t tell you that you look good just to spare your feelings. This way you can get some constructive feedback about your look."

Brady sighed. The paper bags made a crinkling sound again as he relaxed, his shoulders slumping forward. "Yeah… I-I guess you’re right, Colt…" Brady mumbled. He looked out the window as the rest of the college town sped past. "But what if they think it’s horrible?"

"Oh please. Have a little faith in your good old roomie," said Colt, with a grin. Brady looked at him, unamused. "I’m just saying, I think I’ve got pretty good taste… If I say so myself. And besides. If the guys think it’s bad, they won’t just tell you it’s bad. They’d tell you why it’s bad and what you can do to improve it," he added.

"You mean, like, when I was having some trouble getting my character across to everyone else?" said Brady, something thoughtful in the tone of his voice. "I-I guess that wouldn’t be too bad…"

"Yeah, just like that. See? You know what they’re like. They won’t be unnecessarily mean as other people might be," said Colt, with a small laugh. It was amusing how timid Brady was, but it was also downright adorable. It was part of why Colt couldn’t want to get his hands on the poor guy.

"How are you feeling?" said Colt, on the way home from D&D. Brady’s face was flushed, but it was pretty clear that Brady couldn’t stop smiling. "If I knew calling you handsome was all that it would take to make you stop looking so serious all the time, I’d have done it more often!" he said.

"C-Colt, stop!" said Brady, though his voice didn’t quite falter nearly as much as it would have in the past. Brady’s confidence had taken a major boost from the positive reaction of their friends to his appearance.

"It’s true, man," said Colt, with a laugh. "You gotta admit, though. It feels good being the center of attention for once, doesn’t it? It feels good knowing that people think you look great. As long as you don’t get too self-absorbed and vain, there’s nothing bad about that."

The faint reddish tint of Brady’s cheeks deepened as he looked out of the window to avoid Colt’s gaze. "Y-Yeah," he said. "I-It did feel good. It was… It was weird, though. I’m so used to people just kind of… forgetting I’m there? I-I wouldn’t complain if I could have another day like that, though."

Colt laughed. "Careful now, buddy, or you might get hooked," he said. He wanted Brady to care a bit more about how he looked, but he didn’t want the boy to be self-centered and vain to the exclusion of everything else. "Positive attention’s nice and all but you have to make sure that you don’t get lost in chasing after that high again."

Brady nodded. "O-Of course, Colt. I-I’m not an idiot. I know that. I-I don’t want too much attention, anyway…" Brady trailed off. A short while later, they pulled into the dorm parking lot. "I just want to stop feeling like I’m invisible."

"Well, you know, all it takes for that is to be confident in yourself," said Colt, with a grin. "You just have to be more sure of yourself, and it doesn’t help to be a little more assertive. That’s how you tell people that you’re there to be seen and not overlooked."

The suggestion worked better than even Colt had anticipated. Before long, Brady stopped stuttering so much whenever he was faced with an unfamiliar social situation. Gradually, the slump of his shoulders straightened out and he stopped looking down at the ground so much while walking around campus.

Instead of sliding into a faux-indecisiveness because of his anxieties when asked to express his preferences, Brady gained the ability to speak his mind clearly and concisely. He became a pleasure to converse with and debate, the brilliance that he’d had inside the whole time finally shining through.

"What do you think?" said Brady, walking into the room and giving a twirl for Colt to examine him. He’d gotten a new haircut, without so much as a nudge from Colt. It truly was fascinating how the human mind adapted to his suggestions.

"It looks pretty good," said Colt, giving his roommate two thumbs up. Brady grinned, though his cheeks still took on a faint pink tinge. "I bet you’re getting a fair bit of attention from girls now that you look like that," said Colt.

The shy little squeak that Brady made would have been adorable if Colt didn’t find it so annoying to think that anyone, least of all a girl, would dare compete with him for Brady’s attention. "I-I guess so… Yeah…" Brady murmured, his cheeks taking on a richer reddish hue as a result. "I-I have to admit… I-It’s kinda nice."

For all that his confidence had improved in the last couple of weeks, there were still some things that brought out the uncertain, insecure parts of Brady’s personality. The juxtaposition of the person Brady was and the person Brady was becoming was nice. At least, it was, to Colt. "But you’re not interested in them, are you?"

Brady took a moment to reply, his eyes glassing over for an instant. He looked at Colt and shook his head, scratching the back of his neck sheepishly. "No, no, not at all," he said. "I-It’s nice, but I don’t think I’m ready for that yet. Besides… I have to focus on my academics right now, anyway."

Colt grinned. Brady was coming along nicely. The more Brady became susceptible to his suggestions, the faster Brady’s psyche filled in the gaps and justifications for them. This last one had been almost instantaneous, which could only have been a good sign.

The female attention wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. Even if Brady had no intention of taking things further, romantic interest, especially for someone that had felt invisible for most of his life, was bound to do wonders for Brady’s self-confidence.

"It’s fine to let them look…" said Colt, trailing off as if expecting Brady to fill in the rest of the line.

Brady, being the sweetheart that he was, obliged. "But no letting them touch the merchandise," Brady said, finishing off the sentence. He shook his head and laughed. "I know, Colt. I know."

By the time that the fall term’s final examination period rolled in, Colt had managed to lay all the groundwork for the rest of his plan. Up until then, he had been mostly a bystander, offering suggestions here and there whenever he found an opportunity. It was time to take a more active part in things now, however.

Colt had to wait until exams were at least over, though. Despite his powers, he was still a university student. He owed it to himself not to fail out of college. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be able to continue building his wealth for his next incarnation.

Despite being a roadblock, the exams provided Colt with the perfect opportunity to launch into the next step of his plan. Since everyone had been busy studying, the group’s regular schedule of playing D&D fell apart. Most of the group going home for the holidays didn’t help things.

Brady went back home to see his family and didn’t return to the dorm until a few days before the start of the winter term. The day after Brady came back, Colt made a point of buying a gym bag and a couple of weights for the room.

"How long do you think you’ll be able to keep that New Year’s Resolution?" said Brady. It was clear that Brady had continued growing in confidence over the break. The sass in his voice was evidence enough of that. The old Brady would never have been so sharp-tongued.

"Hey, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve my body," said Colt. He set the gym bag down at the foot of his bed and carefully placed the weights next to it. He let his power of suggestion seep into the words he said next, "working out and improving your body is just the next logical step of improving your style."

Brady shrugged. "I get that," he said, though he showed no inclination to follow in Colt’s footsteps. For now, anyway. "But I just didn’t peg you to be the type to want to go to the gym."

Colt suppressed a laugh. He supposed that was true. His fey blood had kept his body at its peak physicality so there had never really been any need for him to go to the gym. "How else do you think I managed to get this body?" he said, spreading his arms to show off.

Brady rolled his eyes. "Genetic lottery," he said, the corner of his lip curling into a fond smile. "Seriously, man. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone put away as much food as you do and not get fat from it. Is there, like, a black hole in your stomach or something?"

Colt stuck his tongue out at Brady. He just liked eating. Next to sex, eating was the one pleasure that never got old. "You could come with me, you know," he said, dropping into his bed and folding his arms behind his head.

"No thanks," said Brady, turning his attention back to his laptop. School had only just started up again, but Brady had already stuck his nose right onto the grindstone. "There are other more productive things I can do with my time, like studying. Oh, by the way, are you excited for the next session?"

"Oh yeah, hey?" said Colt, pretending to have forgotten about D&D when he hadn’t. "It’s been a while… The last time we played was what? Two weeks before finals? Hell yeah, I’m excited. Anyway. The gym isn’t a waste of time. You’ve been on this whole self-improvement binge recently. Working out is probably one of the best things you can do for that."

Colt didn’t use his powers to make those suggestions. He wanted to see if he could manipulate Brady the old-fashioned way. Besides, he had to conserve his energy for the big day, anyway.

"Hmm… Maybe you have a point," said Brady. He looked over his shoulder at Colt. "I wouldn’t mind looking like you do… But I dunno. We’ll see, I guess. This term’s going to be pretty busy for me so I don’t know if I’ll even have any time to try it out."

That was fine, as far as Colt was concerned. One way or another, Brady was going to find the time at some point.

It took all of a single workout for Colt to realize that he actually rather liked going to the gym. He enjoyed the feeling of the blood pumping in his veins and the sweat trickling down the sides of his face.

There was just something strangely exhilarating about working out. Colt couldn’t quite put it to words but he loved it. He’d initially only planned to work out now and again as part of the plan, but the more he did it, the less he wanted to stop.

In the days following, Colt kept giving Brady a few non-powered, thinly-veiled suggestions to go to the gym. His efforts were largely fruitless, but he knew what he was doing. He’d already planted the seed in Brady’s mind. All that was left was watering it.

The resistance was to be expected. Despite the dramatic transformation that Brady had made, from shy nerd to well-adjusted geek, he was still, at the core of him, a quintessentially intellectual person. Rational people could make irrational choices when under emotional duress, however, and Colt had an idea of how to exploit that fact.

It started with being an hour late to the first D&D session back after the break. Colt made sure to come in short of breath, sweaty from his workout, and unchanged so that his musk couldn’t help but fill the room. The stunt had the desired effect, and Brady passive-aggressively made his displeasure known through the night.

Colt made sure to be late a few more times just to drive the point in. Brady was incensed, but was too polite to say anything too incendiary. The worst he did was when he pulled Colt aside and said, "Don’t you think it’s a bit disrespectful to the GM to keep coming in all sweaty and stinky from your workout when we’re almost halfway through the session?"

Just to get under Brady’s skin a little more, Colt had said, "Didn’t seem like they minded it much to me," in response.

The day that Brady reached his breaking point wasn’t even entirely intentional as far as Colt was concerned. He’d just gotten too absorbed in a godly burn and didn’t realize that he’d missed a session entirely until he’d wrapped up his workout.

Never one to waste an opportunity, though, Colt ignored the texts Brady was sending him and kept on until he tired. Then, without bothering to so much as towel off the sweat he’d worked up, he headed back to the dorms, almost-giddy with anticipation.

Colt had scarcely entered the room when Brady exploded with a fury that Colt never imagined the shrimpy nerd could have. "What the fuck, man?!" Brady demanded, practically seething through his gritted teeth. "What the hell is wrong with you? Is the gym really so much better than spending time with friends? At least have the decency to tell us that you’re not interested in playing anymore instead of playing this stupid-ass game of promising you’ll be on time next time and being even later than the last time!"

Taking a deep breath, Colt unslung the gym bag from around his shoulders. Once it settled on the ground, he kicked it toward his bed, right on top of a pile of dirty laundry. He figured that if he was deliberately winding Brady up, he could probably lean into it a bit more by letting his side of the room get messy. "Chill, buddy," he said, after a few seconds of Brady looking at him expectantly.

"CHILL?!" Brady practically screamed. His eyes were wide and his nostrils were flaring. If looks could kill, Colt was sure he’d have died a hundred times over from the way that Brady was glaring at him. "Don’t tell me to chill! I’ve had it fucking up to here with you flaking on us! What the fuck is so good about the gym that it keeps you there for hours anyway? It’s so fucking dumb! And meaningless! What sort of fulfillment could you possibly get from mindlessly lifting weights and moving around like a broken record?!"

Colt shrugged and walked over to his bed. He sat down and whipped off the handtowel he’d draped over the nape of his neck. He tossed it over at the footboard of his bed. "Jesus, dude. It’s just D&D," he said, as Brian turned scarlet. "And don’t knock the gym until you try it."

Breathing heavily, Brady opened his mouth to say something, but Colt held his hand up and interrupted him. "How about this, buddy? Come with me to the gym. Give working out a shot. And I promise that I’ll stop going to the gym on session day."

The anger drained out of Brady as he mulled over Colt’s proposal. He opened his mouth a few times but never said anything. Finally, a couple of minutes later, he said, "Okay. Fine. But you have to promise. And if you break it, you owe us dinner."

Colt nearly laughed. Brady was so predictable. As angry as he got, there was no way that he’d want to lose the first friend he made at university. His agreement to Colt’s proposal had been practically preordained. This time, Colt allowed some of his power to seep into his words. "Trust me, buddy. You’re going to love it."

"Jesus, Brady. Relax. It’s just the gym," said Colt, doing his best to hide a smirk as he guided his friend toward a pair of vacant weights benches. "None of these men are going to bite you. Probably. Not without consent, anyway."

Brady glowered at Colt. "I think I might have made a mistake agreeing to come," said Brady. The resignation in his voice told Colt that he wasn’t going to fight it, though. "Alright. Fine. Let’s get this over with. What do I do?"

Colt smiled. He patted Brady on the shoulder as he launched into a brief rundown of best-practices and safety tips. To his credit, Brady listened attentively despite looking like there were a hundred other places that he wanted to be. "Alright," said Colt, once the spiel was done, "Let’s get you warmed up."

As much as he wanted to push Brady, Colt was well-aware that the boy needed to build a solid base before moving to anything more intensive. By the end of the warm-up, Brady was already sweating into his poorly-fitting gym clothes while Colt had barely broken into a sweat.

"Oh-kay," said Brady, leaning on the bench as he caught his breath. "I take your point… I’m out of shape. That’s not good," he added, shaking his head as he straightened up and took a quick swig of water. He fanned himself with his hand and said, "What’s next?"

Colt set two pairs of dumbbells on the bench in front of Brady. "Just do what I do. Don’t worry. I’ll take it easy. If anything’s too hard, just tell me and we’ll figure out something else to do, okay?" said Colt. Brady nodded, a strange resolve burning in his eyes.

It was amusing, the way that Brady’s determination evaporated almost entirely by the time that they were done the second of three sets for the first exercise. Setting his dumbbells down on the floor for a second, he looked at Colt with a grimace and said, "What happened to taking it easy? You’re killing me."

"I may have overestimated your condition," said Colt. He chuckled. "But you can’t give up just like that. At least fight through to the end of the set. I promise. Just get there and it’ll start feeling good."

"Ugh," said Brady, his eyes expressing a healthy amount of skepticism. Nevertheless, he picked up his dumbbells and continued. He wasn’t quite as graceful during the third set as during the first and second, but he did his best to go through the motions. "This. Feels. Like. Hell," said Brady, huffing the words between puffs of breath. "How will this ever feel goo—"

Brady blinked, the words dying in his throat. His posture, sagging from the strain of doing an exercise he wasn’t accustomed to, straightened. "Woah," he said, tentatively executing a few more reps of the exercise that had been causing him so much pain up until that point. "I mean… Wow… I… I didn’t expect it to feel like that."

Colt grinned. Hook, line, and sinker. He had the boy now. Brady’s final, fleeting chance at escape was gone. Brady’s fate was sealed. "Told you," said Colt, beaming at his friend. "Want to keep going?"

Brady took a deep breath. He straightened his posture, tightened his core, and looked over at Colt with determination in his bright eyes. "Hell yeah," he said.

That was exactly the answer Colt was looking for. "Ready?" he said. Brady nodded. "It will only feel better from here," he murmured, his words reverberating with power.

Brady had made remarkable progress in the last couple of weeks. Colt supposed it helped when working out induced a rush of endorphins similar to sex. To say that the boy was hooked would have been an understatement. The only reason Brady’s life wasn’t negatively impacted was that he had remarkable self-control. Otherwise, Colt was sure Brady would have spent every dreg of free time he had on working out.

The special little ingredient that Colt had been secretly adding to Brady’s protein shakes was also partly to blame for the muscle mass that Brady was putting on. Crushed petals from the silver flower growing by the window made Brady’s body more malleable and receptive to change. Between the magical properties of the flower and Brady’s near-religious attendance to the temple that was the gym, it was hardly a surprise that he was growing so rapidly.

Colt grinned as he looked down on Brady, who was in the middle of a bench press set. His cock twitched at the sight of Brady’s corded forearms, glistening with sweat, and the way that Brady’s tank-top stretched across Brady’s broad chest. "Feeling great, aren’t you?" he said.

Brady nodded. He breathed out as he pushed the bar off his chest and set the weight back onto its rack. "Yeah," he said, punctuating the phrase with a grunt as he did another rep. "Never felt better in my life," he added, as Colt helped him set the bar into its rack.

"It’s easy to lose yourself in the mindless repetitions, isn’t it?" Colt whispered, the suggestion washing over him with little effect. It hit Brady full-force, though, and he couldn’t help but reach down between his legs to squeeze his cock as Brady’s eyes momentarily glassed over. "Mind getting a little more blank with every rep…"

A small smile tugged on the corners of Brady’s lips as he continued his bench-presses. "Yeah…" he murmured. His eyes were unfocused, his gaze distant, but his form was nevertheless perfect. "It feels good… Thinking less and less with each pump of my muscles…"

"Yeah…" Colt muttered. He was familiar with the sensation himself, the way that the world got gradually smaller and smaller until it was just him and the burn of his muscles. He ran a hand over his chest. "It’s so easy to give in. It feels so good to give in. Just letting your thoughts drain away with every breath."

Colt shivered. His cock was chubbing up in his pants. He had to blink a few times. He felt like he was slowly going cross-eyed. "Can’t get enough of that feeling," he whispered, body on auto-pilot as he spotted for Brady and used his powers to slide suggestion after suggestion into Brady’s mind. "It gets so good you just want to feel that way all the time,"

A slow goofy grin spread across Brady’s face. "Hell yeah… Almost better than sex… Feels so much better than having to think all the time and worry about shit…"

Colt had to agree. The constant thinking was the worst part of being an adult. He had no doubt in his mind that things would be easier if he just didn’t have to think at all. In that respect, he supposed Brady was pretty lucky.

"Is this why you like going to the gym so much, Colt?" Brady murmured. He let out a grunt as he pushed the bar off his chest. "You gotta enjoy it too… Just letting it all drift away while you get into your workout. Feeling nothing but the burn. Thinking of nothing but the burn."

Brady’s insight was amusing, but Colt supposed it had a nugget of truth to it. The gym was an escape. A chance to get away from the constant mile-a-minute pace of his thoughts. "Yeah… I love going mindless while I pump iron… You do, too, don’t you?" he said.

Without thinking—because that was just too hard right now—Colt reached down and adjusted his cock in his gym shorts. He was starting to get hard. Fuck. Just the sound of Brady’s voice, an octave lower now, and duller, was enough to make him so horny.

For about a minute, Colt just stood there, helping Brady through his reps. The occasional clang of the barbell as it settled into its rack was like a slow rhythm, the only thing that marked the passage of time. Eventually, Brady finished his sets and Colt climbed onto the bench for his turn.

"Does it make you horny? Not having to think?" said Brady, standing at the head of the bench as Colt did his first rep. He positioned his hands just so, ready to help Colt settle the bar back into its place.

Colt glanced down. His feet were planted on either side of the bench, his legs spread in such a way that the outline of his erection was pretty clear in his tight gym shorts. "Yeah," he grunted, shivering at the admission as it washed over him. "It makes me so fucking horny to just feel my thoughts slow down to a crawl."

Licking his lips, Colt glanced up toward the head of the bench where Brady was standing. Hovering just a few inches above his face, he could see the large bulge in the front of Brady’s shorts. "Looks like you feel the same way," he said.

Brady chuckled. The sound was low. Dull. It sent a shiver up Colt’s spine and made his cock twitch. He didn’t even bother hiding his arousal anymore. He openly stared at Brady’s junk, licking his lips as it swelled. "Fuck," breathed Brady, reaching down to squeeze himself. "Why can’t we feel this way all the time?"

That was a good question. Fortunately, Colt had an answer. He knew the perfect way to make Brady feel like this all the time. "Hey Brady," he whispered, "What if there was a way?"

"Fuck," Brady muttered. "That would be so amazing. Just imagine it. Feeling so mindless and horny all the time. Not having to think. Not having to worry about anything…"

Colt had to admit. There was a certain appeal to that. In fact, he was already imagining it. Not for himself, necessarily, but for Brady.

"It’s pretty simple, really," said Colt, as he poured all of his power into his words. "Just keep coming to the gym. Every exercise you do. Every rep. Every set. It will make your mind go blank. Little by little." Colt nearly moaned. It felt so good to finally let loose.

"Every time you pump iron, your thoughts slow down just a little bit more. And a little bit more. Until they stop entirely. No more thinking. Unless you really have to," said Colt. His cock throbbed. Above him, a wet spot was starting to form in Brady’s pants.

"Fuck. I wish that was true. It would feel so good, don’t you think?" muttered Brady. His eyes were glassy and unfocused, but he still managed to keep up with Colt’s reps. Together, both of them didn’t miss a single beat. "Can you imagine how horny you’d get like that?"

Good point. Colt was pretty sure he’d considered that before, but he couldn’t quite remember. It was getting rather hard to think, but then again that wasn’t much of a surprise given how hard he was. Horniness, lust, and arousal would probably do quite nicely as a way to passively reinforce the suggestion.

"Yeah… And the emptier your mind gets, and the less you think for yourself, the hornier you get. And as you get hornier your mind gets emptier, and your thoughts get slower, and it becomes harder and harder to think…" Colt muttered, the words flowing out of him before he could really think about what he was saying.

Brady licked his lips. "And on… And on… Getting more mindless the hornier you get… And getting hornier the more mindless you get…" Brady chuckled. It sounded so devoid of intelligence. "Just getting dumber and dumber and dumber so that you feel mindless and empty and horny all the time…"

"That’s right," said Colt. "You’ll lose more and more of your intelligence with every workout. Getting more mindless and empty and horny until all that’s left is a dumb jock slut that can only think of cum and getting fucked…"

"Yeah… That would be so amazing…" Brady muttered, dreamily.

The suggestions did far better than Colt could have ever expected. Working out became something of a compulsion for Brady. What free time he had between homework, D&D, and other extracurricular responsibilities, he devoted to going to the gym. At least, until he decided that everything other than D&D didn’t matter nearly as much as the high he felt whenever he went to pump iron.

Even though he had his responsibilities, Colt accompanied Brady every time he went to the gym. They were workout buddies, after all. The one time he’d declined to come because he had a midterm to study for, Brady had complained about it not being the same until his resistance got worn down. Besides, Colt felt that he needed to go with Brady to the gym anyway, just to make sure that the suggestions were holding.

As much as Colt wanted to keep an eye on Brady during their workouts, the repetitive motions just felt too good to not get lost in. Often, he’d just zone out until the entire workout was finished, he was drenched in sweat, and his whole body was aching pleasantly.

Outside of the gym, Colt’s suggestions to Brady had led to a rather dramatic shift in priorities. As the term wore on, Brady wanted less and less to do with his classes. His grades plummeted, predictably, as he started to struggle with even the basic concepts of reading and writing.

Everything going on was just perfect. It was exactly what Colt had wanted out of Brady. His grades were suffering, but that was hardly unexpected given how often he had to drop everything he was doing to go with Brady to the gym.

On top of all the interruptions to his academic life, Colt also had to pretend that he was getting dumber. He didn’t want Brady to suspect that something weird was going on. He didn’t expect that Brady would notice, but he didn’t want to take any risks. It was easy enough to fake being unintelligent that it was worth the effort.

Colt’s favorite part was the deep, dumb chuckles that he had to do whenever Brady found something stupid to laugh about. Pretending to be bad at math and reading and writing was pretty easy, too. He did it so well that there were some days he ended up having genuine difficulties with things that should have been a piece of cake.

The only real difficulty that Colt had was the constant horniness. It was the same for Brady, but Brady was constantly horny because he was getting dumber over time. Colt, on the other hand, was horny because it was just so fucking hot to watch the IQ points drain from his roommate.

Beyond that, Colt was starting to find it difficult to concentrate on things. Living with Brady meant that his daily life slipped into a strange sort of routine with breakfast in the morning, going to the gym, watching stupid television, and doing a quick workout at home before bed.

The days were so similar to one another that they seemed to blend together. There were days that Colt would sit down at the gym to do weights and then just realize with a start that he was home and having dinner.

It was weird, but Colt didn’t mind losing time. There wasn’t much that he had to think about, or worry about, so he stopped doing as much of both. His only real concern was Brady, who’d dumbed down to the point that he struggled to even work the remote for the TV.

That was fine, though. It wasn’t like either of them really watched the stupid, mindless reality shows that were on. The bright colors and loud people only ever held Brady’s attention for a short while. The way things worked out, after a few minutes of "watching" the TV, Brady would bring out a couple of dumbbells and start doing some curls on the couch. Then he’d get so horny that he’d fish his cock out and start jerking off.

Since he didn’t have much else to do, Colt usually spent his days on the couch right beside Brady. He mostly tuned the TV out. He didn’t even really get what the shows were about. For the most part, he kept his attention on Brady, which meant that once Brady got his cock out, Colt had little choice but to get his own cock out.

Suffice to say, life was simple, but it was nice.

Colt groaned as his cock pistoned in and out of Brady’s hole. "Dude, your ass looks so fucking good impaled on my cock," he said, pretending to chuckle dumbly though a part of him wasn’t sure if it was even fake anymore.

"Oh fuck, bro," Brady grunted, as he bucked his hips backward to meet Colt’s thrusts. Colt moaned, fingers digging into his buddy’s hips. Brady felt so good wrapped around his cock. He was so tight. So hot. And he loved the way that Brady’s thick bubble butt rippled with every slap of his hips against it.

Colt grinned and did a quick flex for the camera. He and Brady got kicked out of university at the end of their first year, but that was to be expected. Colt didn’t much care for university anyway, and he struggled to imagine that Brady did, either. To be fair, though, he struggled to imagine much of anything these days.

A couple of buddies living off-campus invited Colt and Brady to stay with them once they were evicted from the dorms and they’d been there since. To pay for their part of the rent, Colt and Brady took to doing the only things they knew how to do well: working out and fucking in front of an audience, splitting the revenue with their smarter friends who knew how to work all the equipment.

Hunching a few more thrusts of his cock into Brady, Colt growled as he unloaded inside his buddy. It felt so good. His cock throbbed as rope after rope of thick cum blasted out of him and into Brady. He shivered as the pleasant haze around his thoughts seemed to get thicker, and he couldn’t help but moan as he felt the dregs of intelligence in his head slowly drain away.

"Dude, let me make your ass look hot, too!" said Brady, grabbing Colt by the shoulders and pinning him down on the bed. He chuckled dumbly as he slid his cock up and down Colt’s crack before slamming it in, all the way to the hilt.

Colt’s back arched off the bed as he let out a strangled yelp. A small part of him was sure that there was something important he had to do. It was something to do with Brady and pretending about something…

The thought flitted away in a cacophony of sensations as Brady’s cock jammed hard into Colt’s prostate and ripped yet another cry out of him. On the nearby desk, the computer pinged as tip after tip rolled in with a similar sentiment. "Yeah! Fuck his brains out!"

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