Candy spent her life being trodden on by her parents, brother, “friends” and strangers.
It’s time to tip the balance.
Candy didn’t realise the significance of the book when she first found it. It was full of dust and lying flat behind a book on ancient architecture. It looked simple enough, “Hypnosis Spells” written in white across the grey background. It looked very old, in fact the grey wasn’t the original color she discovered when opening it after blowing away the dust. The front and back sleeves had what was left of the picture of clouds and birds against a grey sky. She slipped the book into her backpack and wound her way to the library entrance trying to look inconspicuous. She often “borrowed” books, returning them once she had finished.
Candy walked slowly home even though she was excited to start reading. Her parents were there and her horrid brother Harold. He was mean to her, pulling her hair and pinching her, gave way to slaps on her bottom as she got older. He had never had a kind word to share with her. She hated it and hated him but couldn’t avoid him.
“It’s about bloody time” her mother complained as soon as she walked in. “Go do your chores and come and help me with dinner.” Candy knew better than to argue. She hid the book under her dusty boots knowing that it’s the last place Harold would look for anything. He loved going through her stuff and she often found sticky fingermarks on her books and homework. Once she even found a dried booger and just threw the book away, feeling sick.
After they ate, Candy excused herself and ran a bubble bath. She didn’t dare take a deep bath as there was only so much hot water and she would get into huge trouble if mother didn’t have hot water. Settling in with her book and sweet tea, she was amazed to read about hypnosis. Only around 5% of people can actually be hypnotized but using a hypnosis spell, this could be increased to almost 90%!
Candy was a good girl and always did what she was told. Because of this – bullying and borderline abuse was her life. Her mother worked her like a slave. Her father sent her running for beer, snacks and anything he forgot. His watch, wallet, glasses, if his balls weren’t in a bag he would have her running around looking for those too! And Harold… “Oh Harold. You are going to get the best of this” she mumbled into the dusty pages. Harold really was her nemesis. He was mean and regularly made her life a misery. It was time to change the balance.
Candy spent the next 3 days preparing for her life to change. She read and re-read the spell book until she knew exactly what she needed to do. The first person she was going to try this out on was Harold. She waited until mom and dad were out of earshot and went to find him, he was teasing the poor cat again.
“Harold” he immediately dropped the stick and turned around with a sick grin. “Ah I would much rather bug you” he said lifting his arms to catch her in a bear hug.
“Harold look at me” he did and within 2 seconds he was hers. He stared at her, his pupils enlarging until you couldn’t see the muddy brown irises at all. “What now!” she thought. Candy hadn’t really believed that it would work! Until now.
“Go and kiss my cat sorry” she demanded. He turned and caught the surprised cat in his arms. It froze in fear. Harold had never shown it anything other than relentless teasing. Stroking its head he cuddled it close saying “Sorry kitty, sorry kitty” repeatedly. Candy collapsed in giggles, this was going to be fun.
“Harold you are going to do all my chores” he nodded. Candy spent the day snacking and watching Harold work with great satisfaction. She made him cook supper and do some of mom’s chores too. By the evening Harold was exhausted and she was elated.
Mom had a huge smile on her face that evening at dinner. “Candy cleaned up and made dinner after her chores” mom smiled giving her a quick, rare hug. Dad just grunted and Harold looked tired and confused. It was a good day.
School was a new chapter. Candy spent the whole of her break sitting quietly watching and plotting. The best way she could see to get her revenge was to get the biggest and baddest of them, a boy called Tom Sawyer – yes like the book – on her side. She could use him like a bodyguard and an equalizer.
She went up to him. “What do you want squirt?” he asked nastily. Speaking in a low, slow, soothing, voice Candy got his attention. Having the brain capacity of a newt, he was even easier to hypnotize than Harold was. “Come with me” she commanded much to the shock of his entourage.
“Betty, Betty?” she called. “Betty this is Tom” she said to a surprised and nervous looking girl. “Yes so?” Candy leaned closer until she was staring right into Betty’s eyes “Mock me again. Tease me again. Call me 1 more name and Tom here is going to sort you out.” Leaning away from Candy so that she could see Tom, she paled but wasn’t quite prepared to put her little game to rest yet.
“You don’t own Tom! What is he your puppy?” she mocked. “You just going to snap your fingers and he will come running?”
“That’s about right.” Candy snapped her fingers and Tom stepped forward.
“Tom please explain to Betty how things are going to work from now on.” Tom grabbed a handful of Betty’s hair just at the base of her neck where it hurts most.
“I’m a busy person Betty” he sneered, a little spit landing on her lip. “I don’t have time to come and fix Candy’s problems. So stay the hell away from her” he demanded. Betty couldn’t even talk, she just nodded, swallowing hard. He gave one last tug and walked away.
“Thank you Tom” Candy said giving him a little wave. Stepping closer to Betty again she said, “And make sure your cronies get the message.” Betty nodded looking around. Her cronies were standing in a group watching the exchange with wide eyes.
Candy felt elated. “I’m free” she thought skipping round the yard. Those who had noticed the exchange were shocked but glad that Betty had received what she needed. She had bullied every single child in that school since she got there and they hated her.
Candy walked home every day alone. There were several children who lived in her road but none of them offered her a lift or walked with her. Until today. Baby, unfortunately named by her loving parents, walked up to her.
“Hi Candy” she said.
Candy was wary, Baby had never spoken to her before.
Baby grabbed her hand. “Thank you for scaring Betty, she is so mean to me too, I hate her.” Baby burst into tears in front of a stunned Candy. Squeezing her hand, Candy gave her a hug “Well that’s stopped now. Just call me if she is horrible to you”. The girls chatted all the way home, Candy couldn’t believe it when they reached her gate in record time.
“Shall we walk together tomorrow?” Baby nodded, smiling. She skipped away to her house a few driveways down. Candy felt happy. It was such a foreign feeling for her that she had to think what it was. “Did I just make a friend?” she asked herself. It was her turn to skip and she did it all the way home.
“Where have you been?” her mother demanded breaking her happy spell instantly. “I…I was walking home” she started to explain but her mother interrupted her. “Get started on your chores. I bought a huge box of peaches and they all need to be peeled tonight for preserves.” Candy groaned and earned a clout on her ear, she hated doing it and knew that she had to give Harold the job.
“Where’s Harold” she asked. “He’s helping dad with the lawnmower, its stuck again,” mom moaned. With a sigh Candy started her chores, keeping a sharp eye out for Harold who would be taking them over as soon as she could get him to.
Finally he came into the kitchen. Candy looked around but didn’t see mom, she dashed up to him. “Harold?” he turned to her. “Start peeling the peaches” she instructed, her eyes mesmerizing him. He started off towards the big basket. “Wash your hands first” she instructed. He did and started peeling the peaches without a moment’s moaning.
Mother walked in and stared. Candy picked up a peach and a knife as though she had been doing it all along. “Harold – did you finish with dad?” He nodded, finishing off a peach and picking up another. “Harold offered to help, didn’t you?” Candy said. He nodded reminding Candy of the bouncy-head dog in her father’s truck. “Actually, I have some homework so Harold said he would peel all of them.”
“No” mother said, “finish the peaches first then…” she looked into Candy’s eyes. “Go and do your homework, I will bring you some tea” Candy smiled. “Perfect! Thank you mother.”
Lying in the deep, hot bath Candy wondered where she would take this hypnosis spell next.
Life was good.