“Am I ready yet?” Tyler asked with that ever-hopeful tone to his voice.
He lifted one arm above his head, flexed his bicep, and tensed his abs. He pulled the waistband of his workout shorts down just a bit so I could get a better view of his progress.
“Hmm…” I circled him as he dutifully held his pose, “I’m not quite sure, Tyler. Have you been working hard?”
This was the little game we played after each of his workouts. He didn’t know today was the day it was finally going to happen.
“Oh yes!” he responded, “I’ve been working really hard! See?”
He changed his pose for me, this time another classic bodybuilding pose, his torso slightly twisted, his pumped-up arms tucked away to the side, and his chest proudly puffed up in front of him.
“And you’ve been taking all of your supplements?” I asked, still slowly circling him, taking a look at every detail.
“Yes!” he answered back, “Every morning, every afternoon, every night. Supplements help me grow!”
“That’s right,” I smiled. He really had been an excellent student, “You’ve done a very good job, Tyler. Do you remember how you looked before we met?”
I could see the poor little wheels in his head trying to spin, trying to think back to when he’d first answered my ad for a roommate in my apartment close to campus. He was a pretty unassuming guy back then. A blank canvas, really.
“It’s OK if you don’t,” I assured him, “You’re better now, aren’t you? All of your hard work has paid off, hasn’t it?”
“Yes!” he echoed, “Hard work pays off!”
He eagerly switched to another pose with one hand confidently on his hip, and the other arm raised in an impressive biceps flex. He had really loved seeing his biceps grow. I had selfishly let him work them out as much as he wanted.
“It does pay off, my friend,” I said, “And do you know what?”
He looked at me blankly, trying to form a thought in his head, but he couldn’t quite get there without my help.
“I think today is the day, Tyler,” I told him, “I think you’re ready.”
His whole face lit up, like a kid on Christmas morning.
“I am?” he beamed, “I’m ready?”
“Yes,” I said, “Now, it’s going to be just like we practiced, but I’m going to go all the way in this time. Do you understand?”
He nodded, his face still plastered with a giant grin.
“Then turn around,” I instructed him, “…And sleep.”
At my command, his entire body relaxed in front of me. His head slumped down over his shoulders, his broad back fully exposed.
I let the room become quiet.
When his breaths were synced with mine, I placed a hand on his back, marking my target. I took a step back, and then, just like we practiced, I launched myself forward. I heard my chest slap against his back, and I felt my flesh against his flesh, but only for a moment before the room dropped out from around me and I let myself become completely enveloped within Tyler’s being.
I became instantly aware of the sensations coming from the body I now occupied. A burst of energy from the pre-workout supplement he had taken, the rush of blood pumping through his muscles. His muscles which he had trained and sculpted exactly as I had instructed him to. His muscles which were now mine.
I could also sense his confusion, and a feeling of fear deep down, which I quickly subsided. It pleased me to know that he was still receptive to my suggestions, even though he had now given up complete control of his body to me. I could feel his sense of pride rising to the top. All of his hard work had paid off.
I searched through his mind for a moment. There were very few memories of his life before we met. Most of what was leftover was what I had put in there. Some of it would be useful for me. I would certainly need to fall back on some of the programming I had put in place to motivate him to workout and eat right, to keep his body in perfect shape. Now that I had this body, I wasn’t going to let it go to waste. Tyler had put a lot of work into it, after all.
I allowed myself to become aware of my surroundings. I was, of course, immediately drawn to the mirrors that surrounded me in the small workout studio. I let myself take in the disorienting sensation of seeing another face reflected back at me, and watched the muscular stud in the mirror perfectly mimic my every move and expression.
I placed one hand on my hip and raised the other arm into a solid biceps flex, the exact pose Tyler had performed for me merely moments ago. Two dedicated years of training him, sculpting him into the perfect body for me to occupy, and it had all been worth it.