Story idea by Galloway2017
They called him Vinnie the Mouth because he talked a lot, but in the end his mouth was their downfall because he squealed. It wasn’t like he wanted to be a rat, he had been given no other choice. Jimmy Marconi, his long-time boss, had put a hit out on him, all over his running a tiny little protection racket on the side. He was taking initiative, they should have been impressed.
In any case his career in organised crime seemed to have come to a screeching and permanent end. Two months stuck in a flea-bag motel off the interstate had been followed up by a stellar court performance. He made sure they knew they’d fucked with the wrong guy. He knew where all the bodies were buried… literally. After all he’d put a few of them there himself.
The kind of shit he admitted to in court would normally get a guy a lifetime sentence. But he’d gone to the feds himself. They had nothing on him, so they had to pay a high price for his full cooperation. Full immunity, and a guarantee of witness protection somewhere far away, and somewhere with a warmer climate than Chicago.
But to be honest when he asked for somewhere warmer, he’d been imagining California, or even Florida. Which is why he was more than a little disappointed when Special Agent Garcia pulled off the highway and headed deep down some winding, country roads into the most backwoods part of Appalachian Tennessee. This was major redneck territory. He’d have to set up a moonshine operation to make money here.
Things were looking down already, but then the car turned down a dirt driveway, winding up through a thick stand of trees that hid the property from the small country road it sat upon.
“Here we are!” Agent Garcia announced happily. Too happily in Vinnie’s opinion.
Garcia didn’t like Vinnie, that was no secret. It would have been weird if the fed had liked the gangster. So if Garcia was happy, Vinnie knew it couldn’t be good for him.
“Where the fuck are we, Garcia?” he demanded.
“The ass end of nowhere, Tennessee,” Garcia replied cheerily. “This is going to be your new home for the foreseeable future.”
“This is bullshit Garcia, and you know it. I’m going to talk with Landau,” Vinnie threatened.
“Go ahead, he approved the assignment.”
Shit, Garcia seemed pretty certain. This was going to suck.
They cleared the trees, revealing an old farmhouse, a small barn next to it, surrounded by an expansive yard. Vinnie saw a couple chickens pecking around the dirt in front of the house. Wow, this really was the worst.
And then it got even worse.
A man came running out of the woods just to their right. He was a tall, strongly built man, probably in his thirties, with a shaved head. He was wearing a pair of blue-jean bib overalls, shirtless, with the legs cuffed up over bare feet. He was grinning like a fool, racing to keep alongside the car, waving frantically to them. He looked mentally challenged. Or perhaps seriously inbred. Vinnie wondered if the man had many teeth.
“This is some Deliverance bullshit Garcia!” Vinnie roared.
Garcia just laughed and laughed, pulling the car to a stop in front of the house.
The bald man in overalls planted himself alongside Vinnie’s window, patting it with his palms and hopping up and down on those bare feet, giggling and saying, “Hi! Hi! Hi!”
Vinnie was a bit nervous to get out. The man was even bigger up close. Sure Vinnie was a tough guy, but he usually let his gun do the talking or sent in one of his enforcers. This guy probably had the strength of the stupid.
The door to the farmhouse opened and another man emerged. This man was older, likely in his forties, well built but only average height, with a full head of dark hair but graying temples. He was also wearing overalls, but he had on a long-sleeved plaid shirt and workboots as well.
“Well hello there!” he greeted them. “Bobby, get yer butt back and let the poor boy out of the car!” he called to the bald man.
Bobby pouted like a small child, but stepped back as instructed. “Yes Pa,” he said.
“Good boy,” the older man praised him, like he really was a small child.
Vinnie got out of the car, feeling the oppressive heat and humidity wash over him at once. God, the AC really had hidden their descent into the South.
“Welcome home Vinnie,” the older man greeted him.
Vinnie awkwardly extended his hand, feeling the touch calluses on the other man’s dirty hands as they shook. He reflexively wiped off some of the transferred grime on his thigh.
The man chuckled. “Oh boy, you best get used to gettin’ dirty. You ain’t gonna be all clean like this again for a long, long time.”
Bobby giggled at that as well.
“He’s awll cwean Pa!” he chimed in. “He gonna look diff’rent when he awll dirty!”
Vinnie looked the man-child over more closely, seeing that he was in fact much dirtier than the father. His body odor smelled even from a foot away. His hands looked like he’d been making mud pies. His bare feet were absolutely filthy, grime caked under each toe. God he was a mess.
“I take pride in my appearance,” Vinnie cooly replied, running a hand through his well styled black hair.
“Well, we’ll just see how long that lasts,” Pa declared.
“Okay Vinnie, you’re all set,” Garcia jumped in, dropping the one bag he’d been allowed at his feet. “You keep safe now, and if you have any problems at all, feel free to call us.”
It was an odd thing to say, but obviously totally insincere. What did that mean then? That they wouldn’t take his calls? If they wouldn’t, he’d have no choice but to walk away from witness protection and take his chances. He couldn’t stay here long term.
Garcia got back into the car, wasting no time in pulling back down the driveway, smiling the whole time.
“Okay then, let’s get you inside and get you changed out of those city clothes,” Pa declared.
Vinnie shook his head. “Look Pops…”
“It’s Pa,” the man corrected.
“Whatever. You’re only what, ten years older than me though, so it’s a little weird to have me calling you Pa, don’t you think?”
“All my boys call me Pa. Bobby’s about the same age as you. He calls me Pa,” the man explained.
All his boys?
“Are there more of you here?” Vinnie asked.
“Oh yes. Jason and Chris are around here somewhere. Jason! Chris! C’mon out ‘nd meet the new boy!” he called.
Two more men quickly emerged from the barn and Vinnie’s jaw actually dropped. He’d seen a lot of fucked up stuff in his time in the maffia. But this… this took the fucking cake and then some.
The first man was a bit younger, maybe twenty-five, skinny with buzz-cut blonde hair. He was wearing a pair of undies that seemed to be covered in dinosaur designs, like a little boy’s. That was all he wore though. The rest of his body was bare and he was every bit as dirty as Bobby.
Right behind him though was a tubby man, somewhere between the skinny man’s age and Bobby’s. Like Bobby his head had been totally shaved. He was also completely naked. He’d been shaved all over in fact. His balls had been shaved too, he was all smooth down there, his penis just bouncing free. All tubby and smooth and naked, he really looked like a massive toddler.
“Daz da new boy Pa?” the man in the undies asked, pointing rudely right at Vinnie.
But Vinnie could see the man was oblivious to manners of any kind. His eyes also lacked any flicker of intelligence. They were dull and glassy, and yes he was missing several teeth, visible as he stood there slack-jawed.
“Yes Chris, this is Vinnie, he’s our newest little family member,” Pa answered.
The naked man, who had to be Jason, suddenly and inexplicably blew a big, wet raspberry at Vinnie, before grinning at his joke, spittle dribbling down his chin.
“Don’t be silly to the new boy, Jason,” Pa chided him.
“Sowwy Pa,” Jason said, twisting his dirty toes in the soil and nibbling on one of his fingers.
“So, all your boys are…” he almost said retards, but reminded himself he needed to stay here at least a little while. Don’t piss them off right away if possible.
“They’re all disabled?” he asked.
“Oh we don’t think of it like that,” Pa told him. “They’re special boys, that’s all. And they’re all very happy, very good boys for their Pa.”
All three of the men grinned and squirmed like hyperactive little boys, drinking in what they evidently took as praise.
“And you let them… um… wear whatever clothes they feel like?”
For a moment Vinnie was sure the redneck bastard would be offended. But Pa just chuckled again.
“Well not exactly. They have outfits for if we got to go to town and a special outfit for church. But at home, well I’ll explain the rules to you shortly. We got to get you inside, show you your room and get you changed into your home clothes.”
“I’m quite happy dressed as I am, thanks,” Vinnie told him.
Pa looked him up and down, clearly finding that very funny. Okay, so the expensive Italian shoes and suit he was wearing weren’t for a farm. And he didn’t really want to mess them all up walking around here. But he wasn’t putting on any clothes this guy thought was more appropriate either.
“Just c’mon in and we’ll get you settled,” Pa said, leading him up the steps onto the porch.
Vinnie followed him inside. The house was pretty clean actually, better than he’d expected given the outside.
“So you expect me to help you with taking care of the… special men?” Vinnie asked, not really prepared to deal with retarded inbred rednecks like that.
“No, no, not at all,” Pa assured him right away. “That’s my job and mine alone.”
Vinnie breathed a sigh of relief.
They entered a bedroom and Vinnie saw there were two beds in the room. One had clearly been occupied for some time by one of the boys, as Pa called them. There were small children’s toys cluttering the floor between the beds and the sheets were car and truck themed.
The other bed was clean and made up. And lying across it was a single item, a simple white tank-top, a wife-beater some would call it.
“There you go Vinnie,” Pa said. “That’s your bed, and you can leave your bag downstairs. I’ll deal with it later. Everything you need is right here in this room, in the closet and dresser. I got some clothes in there for church and town. But I don’t want you going in there, gettin’ them on, gettin’ them dirty.”
“It’s natural for farm boys to be messy, to get themselves dirty. They’re always playin’ in the barn, wrestlin’ with each other, and with the pigs too. They get messy doin’ their chores, the get messy eatin’ their dinner. And four boys means a lot of laundry if they’re gettin’ their clothes messy.
“So, y’all got one outfit for home, but y’all got to share it,” Pa told him.
Vinnie was totally confused now. “Share it? Share an outfit?”
Pa nodded. “Today Bobby’s got them overalls. Chris got the undies and I saved the shirt for you. Jason don’t mind though, he liked bein’ nekkid more ‘n anything else. With four boys there always gonna be one a you nekkid. Well at least one. No rule that you gotta wear your part of the outfit,” Pa explained with another chuckle.
“You can’t mean… you, don’t expect me to take off all my clothes and put on that wife-beater and what, that’s it?”
To his utter shock, Pa nodded instantly. “You get changed out of those city clothes before they get ruined. I’ll take them down to goodwill when we go to town in a couple days. Get changed quick, then come on down to the kitchen and we’ll give you a haircut.”
Vinnie jerked backwards reflexively, as thought the scissors were coming for his hair right then.
“Look man, I got my hair just how I like it. No one touches my hair, you got that,” he warned, using his most menacing tone. This guy didn’t know who he was fucking with.
But Pa wasn’t deterred at all.
“Hair on little boys just gets filthy, gets matted, gets infested with lice. It gets in your eyes, gets all sweaty when you’re playin’, when you’re explorin’ and doin’ yer chores. Easier to get rid of it.
“Now hurry up, we got to go on our walk too. The boys are all excited for it.”
“Walk? Where are you planning to walk to?”
“Oh we have a nice trail that goes up onto the mountain behind the house. It’s real quiet, no tourists or anything around here. It’s a rough one, but that’s just the point. We need to start getting your feet toughened up. It’ll be sore at first, sorry to tell you, but it won’t take no time at all ‘nd you’ll be able to run over gravel like the others.
“But we gotta get your feet used to it, so a nice long walk up the mountain will get you started. It’s gonna feel so nice Vinnie, especially since you’ll be nice and cool in your new outfit, no hair to get in your eyes.”
“Get my feet used to it? What does that even mean?”
“Well none of my boys have shoes, not even for church. Around here it’s pretty much expected for little boys to be barefoot. Keeps ‘em surer on their feet, makes climbin’ the trees easier and saves buyin’ boots for the barn.”
Vinnie had heard enough. The old bastard wanted him to be like these morons he cared for. He actually thought he’d enjoy a half-naked, barefooted walk in the woods.
“Just stop right there man. None of that is going to happen. I’m not stripping naked and walking around with my cock flapping in the breeze for you to see. I’m not letting you touch my hair. I’m not going for a stupid walk, and definitely not barefoot.
“You don’t seem to get that I’m not a retard like those other guys. I’m not an inbred hick with an undeveloped brain. I’m actually a pretty smart guy. I ran a lot of rackets back in Chicago. People knew not to fuck with me. I don’t need you to take care of me. I can take care of myself just fine!”
“Okay, okay, okay, just calm down now,” Pa urged. “Look, I know you aren’t like my boys. I get that Vinnie, I do. And I seen your file. I know what you done, what you can do.”
Vinnie nodded, finally glad to have a little respect.
“I’m not a rich guy like you. The only valuable thing I even have is this pocket watch, passed down from my grandpa to my pa to me.”
He fished the tarnished, old pocket watch out of the pocket of his overalls. Pa held it up for Vinnie to see more closely and Vinnie wondered what the piece of junk would bring at a pawn shop. Probably not nearly as much as this idiot thought it was worth.
“I cherish this pocket watch, mostly for the sentimental value,” Pa admitted. “But also because it has helped me to build a loving family.”
Pa pressed a button and the lid of the pocket watch flicked open. But inside it wasn’t a clock face. It was a digital screen, something much newer than the outside of the watch. And it was filled with these strange swirling colors. So bright, so eye-catching. Vinnie didn’t even hear Pa still talking, he was just looking at the swirl of colors.
“It’s so pretty ain’t it?” Pa whispered.
He was standing next to Vinnie now, patting his arm gently. Vinnie found himself nodding. Yes, it was very pretty.
“Each of my boys saw my pretty pocket watch on their first day here,” he went on. “They weren’t so different from you before that. They were smart, they were all so independent, so confident. And then they saw this pretty watch. Don’t worry Vinnie, it feels good, doesn’t it?”
Vinnie did feel good. It felt so peaceful now. All his other thoughts and worries were just gone. There was just the pretty watch and Pa’s voice, echoing around his head. His muscles were all getting nicely relaxed too. His whole body was just losing its tension.
“Yeah,” Vinnie mumbled, so relaxed now, it was hard to even speak.
“Yes, it feels lovely. They all saw the pocket watch just like you. And then they changed out of their city clothes into farm boy clothes. They got their haircuts, they went for their walks and they became a part of the family.
“Jason was the last one to join us. He was a banker before. He didn’t want his farm clothes either when he saw them. But after he saw the pocket watch he still didn’t want them, but for a totally different reason. After our lovely, sleepy talk, he didn’t want clothes at all, silly boy.”
Somewhere in his head Vinnie felt alarm bells going off. He needed to stop looking at the watch. He needed to get out of here. But his body wasn’t responding. His muscles were all relaxed, all asleep, his arms and feet heavy as stones.
“Don’t… don’t wanna forget…” he managed to slur.
“Oh you won’t forget everything, I promise you that. No, you’ll still know who you used to be. I won’t take that away from you Vinnie. But you are going to need to forget a lot about how to be that person. You’ll need to forget things a simple farm boy doesn’t need to know, like how to drive, or how to read, or how to tie a pair of shoes. Course you won’t have any shoes to tie anyway.
“We need to make sure that you need your Pa. Make sure you mind your Pa, appreciate your Pa. Make sure you only got the simplest of thoughts, ‘bout playin’ with your brothers, doin’ your chores, gettin’ nice and messy.”
Vinnie managed to shake his head. It took a lot of effort. His eyelids were drifting half closed, but he still couldn’t look away from the swirl of colors, even as his chin came closer and closer to resting on his chest.
“That’s it Vinnie, you’re almost there buddy. Just let go buddy, let your eyes drift shut and let it all go. You’ll have the most lovely nap, it won’t feel like long at all to you. And when you wake up, you’ll be special just like the other boys. Your head will be nice and empty, nice and clean, the opposite of how your outside will be from now on,” he added with a laugh.
“I know you think you can fight it honey, but you just can’t. All the other boys let their chins touch their chests, let their eyes close and when they woke up, they were silly and simple and ready to be my good farm boys.
“It’s much better this way. They don’t even remember the naughty things they did before. Now they’re innocent. It’s a relief for them, and it will be for you too darling. Soon you’ll have the most innocent of eyes.”
Vinnie felt horror flashing through his mind. He didn’t want to be innocent and utterly helpless. Jesus, others would see him too, when they went to town, or church. And Agent Garcia had made a point of telling him he’d visit from time to time, see how he was enjoying his new life. He understood what he meant now. He was looking forward to seeing Vinnie reduced to idiocy.
That couldn’t be his new life! It just couldn’t. He wasn’t going to go to sleep. He wasn’t going to let this fucker do this to him.
“Deep sleep Vinnie. Deep peaceful sleep,” Pa whispered, gently pressing his head downward until his chin touched his chest and his eyes got so heavy and they drifted closed. It felt so good to finally drift off to sleep.
Vinnie’s eyes fluttered open. He was still standing up, but no longer in the bedroom. They were in another room, facing a mirror, so he could see what he looked like now.
He gazed into the mirror, looking first at his smooth head, his hair all shaved away. His fancy suit and Italian shoes were gone too. He was wearing the tank-top now, but that was all. It was a bit small for him, only just reaching his belly-button, leaving his penis fully visible, soft between his legs. It was smooth too. Pa had shaved him all over apparently.
Vinnie looked down at his feet, wriggled his toes experimentally against the wood floor of the farmhouse, feeling it under his soles, getting used to it.
Pa’s hand pressed the middle of his back.
“What you looking at there Vinnie?” he asked.
“Toes,” Vinnie answered.
“Oh yes, toes are interesting. You should have a closer look, honey. It’s okay, go ahead and sit on your bum.”
Vinnie sat on his bottom, feeling the floor under it as well. He took one foot into his hands, looking at it, wiggling the toes again. His eyes widened. Toes were so interesting. He wanted to do something else with them, but he stopped. That was silly. That was dumb.
Pa got down on his level, put a supportive hand on his shoulder. He looked over at Pa, confused by his urges, by how fascinating he found his toes.
“It’s okay Vinnie, go ahead,” Pa assured him.
It’s a huge relief to know it’s okay. He pulls the foot to his mouth, puts the big toe between his lips and tastes it, explores it with his tongue, jams two more toes in there, slurps at them as Pa watches and nods encouragingly.
Finally they come out with a pop, a line of drool slips out too, he feels it running down his chin, dripping on his chest.
“Why I wike toes Pa?” he asked the man.
Pa ran a hand gently over his smooth head. It felt lovely to Vinnie, felt so soothing.
“You were such a good boy for me Vinnie. You looked at my special pocket watch and had a wonderful, long nap. And we took away all the smarts in your silly little head. So now you’re just a little boy honey.
“You’re a very little boy inside a big boy’s body. But it’s okay because I know you’re all little inside. And it’s okay to do little boy things, to enjoy little boy stuff, like playing with your toesies,” Pa explained.
Vinnie nodded his head. He remembered going to sleep now. He’d had a nice nap and Pa had helped him forget all his naughty things. He was certain he’d been a naughty boy before. But he couldn’t begin to recall what it was he’d done that was so bad. Pa had taken the burden away. And now he was little inside. Yes, he felt little. Pa was telling the truth.
“Okay honey, let’s go for our walk now. After that your feet will be awfully dirty and those toes will taste different when you eat ‘em next time,” Pa said, helping Vinnie to stand up.
That did sound good! What would his toes taste like next time? Vinnie wanted to know. And walking sounded fun too. He was going to be such a good boy for his Pa.
Special Agent Garcia pulled the car around the final bend, exiting the woods and sighting the farmhouse he’d last seen two months ago. He hadn’t even parked it when Chris emerged from the barn, rushing over in a pair of shirtless overalls.
“Garcia hewe!” he announced brightly.
Bobby appeared right behind him, beaming ear to ear, wearing a tank top and dirty looking holey undies. The two giggling idiots were eager to say hello to their visitor, but it wasn’t them he’d come to check up on.
“Where’s your Pa?” he asked them.
“Pa’s feedin’ the hogs. Bwudders is hewpin’,” Chris answered.
“Right, well maybe you should go tell them I’m here.”
The man in overalls nodded like a bobble head and rushed off.
Moments later he returned, hopping along, hand now being held by Pa. A moment later two more men emerged from around the side of the house. Tubby looking Jason, nude as always, and right behind him Vinnie.
Vinnie was just as naked as Jason now, his whole body deeply tanned, his hands and feet brown with dirt, head shaved, body smooth like the others. Garcia couldn’t help but smile. The former gangster had been such a smooth operator, such a good liar and manipulator. They called him the Mouth, but it was really his brains that made him so good and so dangerous.
Garcia had worried that those brains would have found a way out of this end. That he’d have slipped past Pa somehow.
But as the naked man came closer he could see in his eyes the same vacancy, the same blankness as in the other boys. His face had a slackness to it that utterly transformed his facial features. He had worn a near permanent sneer before. Now his jaw was slack, his chin shiny with drool.
“Vinnie, do you know who this man is?” Pa asked him.
Vinnie gaped at Agent Garcia, his eyes looking at him, but still not focusing.
“Pow-ees-man!” Vinnie declared after a moment, his lips then tugging upward into a pleased smile.
“That’s right Vinnie,” Pa praised him. “He’s the policeman who brought you here to Pa.”
Vinnie looked stunned for a moment, then hurried over to Garcia, grabbing his arm.
“Pa made me hab a nap,” he told Garcia, clearly excited to deliver this news.
For a second Garcia was worried. Was Vinnie trying to break through, trying to get out of this after all?
Vinnie nodded. “Made me all spethal ‘nd widdle,” Vinnie told him seriously. “Widdle inthide.”
Garcia swallowed hard and nodded.
Then Vinnie’s lips tugged up again, that silly smile reappearing on his face.
“Now I go nekkid!” he announced, grabbing his soft penis and yanking it upward to show to Garcia.
Garcia laughed out loud.
“I see that. It’s nice being all nekkid then?”
An emphatic nod from Vinnie. Then he turned to Pa and urged him, “Show da pow-ees-man Pa! Show ‘em da spethal watch!” He turned back to Garcia and assured him, “Feews so good!”
Garcia ran his hand over the man’s smooth head, looking into his eager, peaceful eyes.
“I’m glad it felt so good for you. But I have grown-up things to do. I can’t let Pa empty out my head and turn me into a dumb little nudist redneck like you, okay?”
Vinnie blinked, his mouth still hanging open.
“Otay,” he said, not a flicker of insult taken at the response.
Then he sat down with his bare bottom in the dirt, grabbed his foot and slipped his toes into his mouth, sucking on the filthy digits even as he gazed vacant eyed up at the two grown-ups.