Memoirs of a Madwoman: The Secret origin of Madam Spiral
Innocence: What we all have at some point in our lives, but inevitably lose during life’s course. We try to shield it in our children, but we are simply delaying the inevitable. No matter how we try to shelter it, innocence is eventually lost. Whether by the cold hand of fate through experience, or the careful manipulations and designs of society through education, all innocence is lost.
Potential energy cannot be stored indefinitely and must be released; its form changed. This is true in both physics and psychology. Potential is finite, measurable, and ultimately used up to accomplish a task. But unlike in physics, in psychology, something always seems lost in the transition; we are never as good, as complete, we can be. Personal perfection is always beyond our grasp. We are always flawed.
Somewhere along the line, as our neurons arrange themselves into the infinite latticework of memories, skills, and personality traits, a mistake is made. And it takes only one mistake, one misstep upon the brain’s tapestry to turn a masterpiece into mediocrity: A frightening experience with a puppy creates a phobia of dogs, or the indelicate announcement of a new sibling creates jealousy, or an unfortunate child is born French. Then, so much innocence is lost. Even with therapy or experience- innocence’s gentle poison- the purity is lost.
The phobic person still knows irrational fear, even if they can control it. The child may grow to love their sibling, but they began by hating them and may always wonder why they weren’t good enough…why they needed to be replaced by a brother or sister. The French person will always be French.
Fear, hatred, greed: All of these things tainting the soul leave their stain on the mind, and remedies for these conditions are nothing more than tacky patchworks to cover up the flaws. Traditional hypnotism is nothing more than a careful ruse upon the mind to convince it to play pretend with itself. Skinner’s methods have promise with weaving the tapestry of the mind, but nothing with truly correcting it.
Replacement behaviors? Ha! Change one addiction to another, and it’s still an addiction. Reducing is a panic attack to a nervous twitch is a sloppy stitch job at best. Sadly, there is no way to simply unweave the tapestry of the mind, to truly undo the work of one’s experience so that new, better experiences may take their place.
My theories on forced neuron atrophy- the process of non-surgically agitating neurons at a cellular level so that they unweave and detach, effectively destroying memory and skills by way of light pulses- have finally gained some attention outside of the “crackpot” community.
I was earnestly hoping for a prestigious university, but my generous benefactors seem to come from a less reputable portion of society. I don’t care what the Yakuza want to do with my research. They’re financing it and I’m out of options if I wish to continue. I’m leaving for America in a few days. I’d grown bored of and am unwelcome in Munich anyways. I doubt I’ll be missed.
The only thing I’m taking with me are the clothes on my back, my research papers, and the one piece of my daughter that I have remaining to me; the copies of her infant brain scans.
My darling little Walda, I wonder where you are. You were my everything; taken from me by crooked politicians, whispered to from the shadows by jealous rivals. You were a wonderful baby girl, and the data I got from scanning your brainwaves and mapping out your neural pathways has proven invaluable. If only I could have kept you, could have raised you, you would have been the perfect control group. If I knew where you were, I’d break you out of whatever orphanage they hid you in and take you with me. But that is not a risk I can afford to take right now, regardless.
I go to America to start anew. And perhaps, if my experiments bear fruit, the whole world may start anew as well.
Dr. Wilma Wendel
Audio Log 3-4
WILMA: Testing, testing. Are vee recording, Mister Hayashi?
WILMA: Excellent! This is Doctor Vilma Vendel, recording forced neuron atrophy experiment number…number…Mr. Hayashi…?
HAYASHI: Twenty-nine, Doctor Windel.
WILMA: Vendel darling, Vendel. There’s a subtle difference in pronunciation.
HAYASHI: Twenty-nine, Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: Experiment number twenty-nine. Test subject is male, Caucasian, approximately 25 years of age. Please state your name for posterity, please.
MUFFLED VOICE: HMMMF! HMMMF!
WILMA: Oh yes, how silly of me, he’s gagged. Stops the screaming for help. Though I see you’ve gone from rags to ball gags, Mister Hayashi. Nice touch.
HAYASHI: Thank you, Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: Anyvays, let’s just call the test subject “Heinrich.” A good name, I think. Are you ready Heinrich?
MUFFLED VOICE: HMMMMMMMMMMMF!
WILMA: Excellent! Now, Heinrich, just look at the disk in front of you. Soon, it vill begin spinning and glowing a pretty pink color and ve’re all going to see vat happens; you most of all. Don’t blink…oh wait, you can’t, thanks to the pretty hooks in your eyelids. Are those pink sequins in the hooks, Mr. Hayashi?
WILMA: Very stylish, Mister Haishi.
HAYASHI: Thank you Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: Vell, no time like the present. Let’s begin, shall vee?
Muffled VOICE: HMMMMMMMMF!
WILMA: Initiating in three…two…one…
WILMA: Subject appears to be in a catatonic state. Loss of bladder and bowel control…evident. Mr. Hayashi, can you please put them in a diaper next time?
HAYASHI: Why bother? We’re done with them after one trial anyways.
WILMA: Total elapsed time to catatonia…two point one seconds. Vell, Mr. Hayashi, it seems that vee have at least managed to veaponize light. Now, if only vee could make the machine more portable.
HAYASHI: The goal is not to weaponize the machinery, Dr. Wendel. It is to fully erase and build memories.
WILMA: Vell, that part ve’ve accomplished at least. Over a dozen test subjects, all vegetables. But this isn’t innocence. It’s just…brain damage. Vee need more control over the process. More precision.
HAYASHI: Agreed, Doctor. Our employers want more than vegetables.
WILMA: Hmmm…vhat do they vant, Mr. Hayashi, you naughty boy?
HAYASHI: Ahem. Protection from prosecution and faster training and recruitment. At low levels: a man goes on a job, but then doesn’t remember ever doing the job. At higher levels of application: Take a man, strip his neurons down to nothing and then build him up to peak soldier level. But you need to refine your process. Additional test subjects are becoming most difficult to procure. Many opportunities for attracting unwanted attention, Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: Yes, Mister Hayashi, vell from everything ve’re finding, the current process is undoing the neurological pathvays that create memory, but they’re so completely undone that there’s no vay to build them back up. I’m trying to turn back their brain’s clocks to infancy, not pre-birth. The brain scans on the test subjects are revealing no growth over time regardless of stimuli. They lack even the tools to build new schema, memories, or skills. I have the sinking feeling that Heinrich here will be more of the same.
HAYASHI: Yessssss….about the process.
HAYASHI: Why the spinning disk?
WILMA: The spiral? Yes, a bit nineteen-fifties, vouldn’t you say? Still, it’s eye catching and focuses the target’s conscious attention for the programmed light sequences that flash in front of the subject. Helps to prime and trigger the brain for the electric impulses received through light vaves. These same light vaves then trigger the brain to begin destroying its own neurological pathways.
HAYASHI: And the light?
WILMA: Pink? Well this particular shade of pink, believe or not, is actually the best frequency available on the visible spectrum for the subliminal sequences to flash and broadcast. I’ve tried ultraviolet light before, but if the human eye can’t consciously see it, then the human brain can’t unconsciously carry out the delete commands.
HAYASHI: And the speed at which the spiral…spins? Does that have any bearing….?
WILMA: Mr. Hayashi…vat are you doing asking me all of these silly questions, naughty boy? You’re not trying to coax my secrets out of me so that our employers can replace me, are you?
HAYASHI: No, Doctor Windell, nev-
WILMA: Or are you not a naughty boy? Maybe you’re a naughty girl? Those sequins on the eye hooks veren’t my idea, after all. Do you have a more delicate, feminine side, just vaiting to get out? Perhaps the Doctor needs to give you an exam.
HAYASHI: Eh….Doctor…this…this…not…it’s not…approp….
Things are becoming tense at the lab. The equipment at the lab can only do so much. But it’s not the equipment’s failings. It’s mine. I’ve succeeded in nothing more than light delivered electro impulse brain damage. Nothing more. I’m burning the grand tapestry of the mind when I want to unravel it and reweave it.
Yet, my metaphor is not a proper one. I can’t unravel the tapestry of the mind if I don’t know what the picture looks like or is supposed to look like. I want to start by unraveling someone back to infancy, but it would take too much time to isolate that part of an individual’s brain and map the neural pathways for an accurate stopping and restructuring point. Your childhood is not my childhood, and thus your neurological connections aren’t my neurological connections. But no one else seems to be understanding that. It’s a very delicate process! It’s not helping that all of my test subjects have been unwilling thus far, either.
The Yakuza, my employers, are pressuring me for results. I’ve got Hayashi under my thumb, but even his optimistic reports won’t stall them forever. They want their magic memory machine. I need to show signs of progress if I wish to keep my research funded.
I just had an idea. I do already have an infant neural pathway on file. A true infantile map of the mind. My daughter, Walda. Even though the scans and data are well over a decade old, that shouldn’t matter to the computer. If I input the program sequencer so that neurons atrophy and restructure to mimic hers, it might get me the desired result. It might almost be like traveling back in time.
My baby girl: Even though you’ve been ripped from me, you may yet make me proud.
Dr. Wilma Wendel,
Possible Scientific Genius.
Audio Log 3-26
WILMA: Testing, testing. Are vee recording, Mister Hayashi?
WILMA: Excellent! This is Doctor Vilma Vendel, recording forced neuron atrophy experiment number…number…Mister Hayashi…?
HAYASHI: Thirty, Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: Experiment number thirty. Test subject is male, Asian, approximately thirty years of age. To avoid relieving subject of his ball-gag, subject shall be deemed Kim.
WILMA: Oh get over it! Ahem. Vee are going to be trying a new sequencing technique recently programmed in, by me, in an attempt to more adequately guide forced neural atrophy. Mister Hayashi, begin in three…two…one!
WILMA: *sigh* Subject seems, vonce again, catatonic. Loss of control over bladder and bowels is…evident. Total elapsed time. Two point-
HAYASHI: Did it not work?
WILMA: I’m not sure. Let’s find out.
SUBJECT: MMMMMFFF! Mama! Mamamamama!
WILMA: Mama? Me?! Oh, quite affectionate, aren’t vee now, my little darling?
WILMA: Does baby vant some of Mama’s milk?
SUBJECT: Mamama blabahgagagaga!
WILMA: Oh, someone’s hungry! Yes she is! Yes she is!
WILMA: Yes, Hayashi, vat is it?
HAYASHI: How do you know the subject isn’t…faking?
WILMA: These are the exact babbling patterns for hunger that my daughter used at approximately eight months of age. A mother alvays knows, Hayashi. Or haven’t you heard?
WILMA: Yes. Circa eight months. I have my daughter’s nearly every thought mapped out from birth to approximately eighteen months. And now, the vones from birth to age eight months are part of Kim…I mean Kimmy’s thoughts, it seems.
WILMA: I think ve’ll call this vone a success, don’t you Mister Hayashi?
HAYASHI: Yes…yes Doctor. I think we will.
WILMA: Oh, and Hayashi?
HAYASHI: Yes, Doctor?
WILMA: Be a good girl, run to the nearest drug store and get some diapers, vill you?
WILMA: Adult…for now.
I have a piece of my daughter back. “Kimmy” as I have taken to calling my newest successful test subject, is just like Walda back at age 8 months.
Basic preferences seems to include desires for dolls and things in pink and purple, just as I dressed Walda back when she was mine. Where once there was a grown man, there is definitely now a baby girl trapped in a grown man’s body. Still, there are inconsistencies. She responds to “Kimmy” and not “Walda”, for some reason. All of her developmental milestones are appropriate for an eight month old female and exactly where Walda was, but she doesn’t show any sign of memory or recognition. No eyes lighting up at the games I played with Walda, or the songs I sang Walda. So if this Kimmy is Walda in mind, she is still not MY Walda.
It must be a limitation from the neural restructuring. Kimmy’s childhood was not Walda’s childhood, and though mental and physical capability can be mimicked, true memory, for the time being at least, seems to be beyond my grasp.
Still, I’d rather have a piece of my daughter back than no daughter at all. I am a mother again, and blessed am I. Now for the fun part: The best part about science is you get to repeat, repeat, repeat to see if it was a fluke. For the most altruistic and selfish of reasons, I hope it wasn’t.
Audio Log 6-16
WILMA: -ster Sato, vat an unexpected surprise! Isn’t it unexpected, Hayashi?
HAYASHI: Sadly no, Doctor.
SATO: We have some…issues… with how you’re conducting your research, Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: Issues?! Vat issues?
SATO: The state of your laboratory, for instance.
WILMA: Vat of it?
SATO: It looks like a child’s room. A nursery in fact.
WILMA: I fail to see your point.
SUBJECTS: *Mixed baby babble.
SATO: And your subjects, why are they dressed that way?
WILMA: Vat way?
SATO: The childish dresses? The diapers?
WILMA: They’re not potty trained yet, Mr. Sato, and I von’t have them soiling their pretty clothes.
SATO: I understand that incontinence is a side effect. But are the decorations on the diapers necessary? Standard medical wear would suffice.
WILMA: I have to look at them too, and diapers and dresses are just so much more…cheery compared to hospital gowns and incontinence briefs. Besides, my little girls only deserve the best, Mr. Sato.
SATO: Two of them are men.
WILMA: Vere men, Mister Sato. Now they’re mommy’s precious little girls. Yes they are! Yes they are!
SUBJECTS: *Cheerful baby babble
SATO: We are paying you to further your research, not so that you may play house, Madam.
WILMA: Madam? Hmm…I think I might like that.
SATO: What was that?
WILMA: Ahem, I vas saying, Mr. Sato, that my research is progressing. Little Kimmy here is already valking. I am so proud of her.
SATO: Doctor…I’m losing my patience.
WILMA: You misunderstand, Mr. Sato. Kimmy had the brain of an 8 month old girl three months ago. Now she has the brain of an 11 month old girl. She’s developing normally. And with my regular brain scans and neural mapping, I’m confident that I can transform anyone into the equivalent of an 11 month old girl. By the end of the month, a vone year old girl vill be possible.
SATO: How does this benefit us?
WILMA: As I foster and raise these subjects up as my own, vith careful neurological mapping, I vill be able to mimic each stage of human neurological development. And if I make a mistake in raising them, I can just mentally revind them a few months and try again. And, if you allow me little Hayashi-
WILMA: My pet name, Mr. Sato, please forgive the familiarity. If you allow me to retain little Hayashi to train my new daughters in martial arts, then I can map these learning processes too, and vithin a generation you’ll have your mass produced killers.
SATO: We do not wish to wait a generation. Why not start mapping the brains of our established soldiers? Hayashi for example.
WILMA: Oh, there’s only vone little Hayashi, Mr. Sato. I’d never think of replicating her.
WILMA: I’m sorry, my English must be slipping
SATO: Wollen Sie in deutscher Sprache zu sprechen?
WILMA: That von’t be necessary, Mr. Sato. My point being, is adult minds are much too complicated to map from scratch. Impossible, really. You have to start ven they’re young and there are as few neurological pathvays as possible, and map things out from there.
SATO: So you say.
WILMA: So I do.
SATO: We want our perfect soldiers now, Doctor Wendel.
WILMA: I’m afraid you’ll have to vait, Mr. Sato.
SATO: Have you observed enough of her processes that you could aid another in recreating what she has done so far?
HAYASHI: Yes, sir.
SATO: Good. Kill her.
SATO: Hayashi! Kanojo o koroshimasu!
WILMA: Achtung, Mister Sato!
SATO: Bababama gagagaga booo!
WILMA: Look, Hayashi! I have managed to miniaturize the device. I’ve veaponized it! Now, vat shall I call you, little vone?
WILMA: Hayashi, you naughty girl! You scared the babies!
HAYASHI: Forgive me, Doctor. A body is easier to hide, and less damning, than a baby girl. Please excuse me. I must go kill his driver. Better they were never here.
HAYASHI: Yes, Doctor?
HAYASHI: To…protect you.
WILMA: I know that, you silly little thing. But vhy protect me?
HAYASHI: I believe…that you are doing the work of gods. And I…I just want to…belong to you.
WILMA: Oh Hayashi, darling! You already do. Now, go take care of the driver and clean up this mess.
WILMA: And Hayashi?
HAYASHI: Yes, Doctor?
WILMA: I already had the perfect little sissy outfit picked out for him. Ven you get back, you’re going to have to vear it.
HAYASHI: ….Yes, Doctor.
WILMA: Oh, and Hayashi?
HAYASHI: Yes, Doctor?
WILMA: Diaper too.
HAYASHI: Yes, Doctor.
WILMA: And Hayashi?
HAYASHI: Yes, Doctor?
WILMA: It’s Madam, now.
HAYASHI: As you wish, Madam.
We’ve passed the point of no return, it seems. The Yakuza have become suspicious of Sato’s disappearance, and my assurances that I haven’t seen him aren’t having the desired effect. It’s only a matter of time before they come for me in force. I won’t have the element of surprise on my side, this time. There is no rational outcome that includes victory.
Yet, I am not scared. I am serene. For the last three months, I have been mother to three darling baby girls, all encased in the bodies of adults. But they have paid no mind to such paltry things, so I have had no reason to, either. I have been happier than I have ever been. I have given them the gift of innocence anew, and they have loved me in return.
Hayashi’s words to me on the day of the Sato incident, (before I had him diapered, petti coated, and over my knee, begging for more) keep echoing in my mind. I have been “doing the work of gods” or some other such foolish sentimental nonsense. Perhaps he is not wrong. Mother is the name of God in the heart of every child. I have been God to three these last few weeks.
I could run, but I dare not abandon my little ones. Who knows what such abandonment could have on their psyches? Listen to me, worrying about them as if the Yakuza will allow them to live. Maternity is making me foolish, I fear.
I will not run though. I would rather die for my philosophy and research than prove it worthless through cowardice. It’s such a shame, really. I’ll never get to watch them grow up. First words, first day at Pre-school. Potty training.
I’ll admit, I’m a bit hesitant on that mark. A great many psychologists believe potty training is the first traumatic event that happens to a child. Perhaps humanity as a whole would be better if they were kept in diapers for a lifetime. Were I allowed to continue, I could experiment with this. Worst case scenario, potty training goes horribly, and then I unravel their brains back to simpler times and they can once again relieve themselves in their pants without shame (not that I ever let my little ones wear pants; such a hassle to change).
But none of this will come to pass, will it? I’ll be surprised if we last the week before the assassins are at our doorsteps. Not even my preparations will stop them, ultimately. When the right kind of person wants you dead, you’re dead. If I’m lucky, perhaps Hayashi will take more than his fair share with him.
I will die content, knowing that I will spend my final days with what is essentially, my infant daughter, in triplicate. The only regret is I will likely die in front of my daughter, too.
Madam Wilma Wendel
Audio Recording 6-22
KILLER: -eally think we wouldn’t find out Doctor Wendel?
KILLER: Whatever, demon bitch. That was a neat trick with the hypnotic lights outside your door. Took out six men before we shot them out.
WILMA: I’m merely flattered you decided to bring more than six men to kill me. Oh, and those lights veren’t hypnotic, I’ll have you know, darling.
WILMA: Not at all. Hypnosis can be reversed. My process can’t be. You’re the proud papa of six baby girls now, age ten months.
KILLER: You what?!
WILMA: As long as you’re killing me and taking my research; there are plenty of diapers under the changing table. You should take them too. Oh, and the most adorable dresses. They’ll like them, I svear.
KILLER: Oh, you fucking bitch!
WILMA: Vait! If you’re going to kill me, grant me vone last request.
KILLER: Fat chance.
WILMA: Use my device on me. Let me be innocent before I die.
KILLER: Heh…fine. Sit down.
WILMA: I’m coming, Valda. I’m coming.
KILLER: Not that you’ll know this, but the thing that’s going in your mouth after I flip this switch is my dick. Then when I’m good and done, you’ll eat a bullet.
WILMA: Fine. I von’t know any better, anyvays. Just…do it.
KILLER: Hello? Anybody home? Helloooooooo? Oh shit. She’s not moving. Bitch fry her brain?
KILLER: Oh, so you’re not a vegetable. So how old are you baby?
KILLER: The fuck? Sit down bitch.
(Gunshots fire multiple times.)
KILLER: What’s happening! Die! My gun! A baby bottle? What the...gabba abba babba boo?!”
HAYASHI: Madam! I’m coming!
WILMA: Little vone? Vat are you doing? You’re all bloody, and you’ve ruined your pretty clothes. You know I abhor violence. I thought vee had this talk ven you killed Mister Sato and his driver last veek.
HAYASHI: Madam? Is that… you?
WILMA: Who else vould it be, darling?
HAYASHI: And who is…that?
WILMA: On the floor? That’s my newest little sissy girl.
HAYASHI: How did you… dress and diaper her so quickly?
WILMA: Like this.
WILMA: Aren’t clean clothes so much nicer than bloody ones?
HAYASHI: Yes…but….but…*weapons clacking on floor*
WILMA: Oh, you naughty little girl! It’s not time to be on your knees right now! And your head is supposed to be up, not down, ven you do that sort of thing, anyvays.
HAYASHI: Madam Wendel…you’re…you’re a god.
WILMA: Yes, Hayashi. I suppose I am. About that though. I’ve grown tired of calling you Hayashi.
HAYASHI: Yes Madam Wendel.
WILMA: From now on, you vill be….Asuka. Yes, I think that fits you much better.
ASUKA: As you will it, Madam Wendel.
WILMA: And Asuka?
ASUKA: Yes, Madam Wendel?
WILMA: I’ve grown tired of Vendel. I think Spiral vill do, don’t you? This all started with a spiral. Let’s finish it with one, yah?
ASUKA: Yes, Madam Spiral. Yes.
SPIRAL: Now come, Asuka. Vee have many minds to revind. A paradise to create. Much innocence to spread.
ASUKA: How much, Madam Spiral?
SPIRAL: Vhy, a whole vorld’s vorth, my naughty little Asuka, a whole vorld’s vorth.
Journal Entry: Final Entry
I did it. I stared into the abyss of my own creation, and the abyss blinked. I have ascended to godhood, though I don’t know how. Perhaps it’s because I knew my daughter’s neural pathways better than my own; perhaps my brain had some unique formatting that made my machine go beyond its intended purpose, I’m not sure. But I’m different now. Better. Perfect.
For a brief second, an eternity it felt, I felt my neurons detach themselves in my brain as instructed. Everything was coming unraveled in an instant. The machine was set for the very first brain scan I took of my daughter. I was becoming Walda, my own daughter, circa day one. And as my mind approached the event horizon, I knew innocence. I knew nothing and had unlimited potential; the entire universe of possibilities lay before me and yet I was unaware, as if taking in the sensations of the world around me for the first time.
And in that moment, I glimpsed something inside myself. Whether it was there before, or put inside of me in that split second, I saw through the eye of God. I saw the world for what it really was, nothing but a vast system of potential energy waiting to be tapped and slowly losing charge, held together by the illusion of inaccessibility.
In my brief moment of unlimited potential brought on by me literally being born again, I saw the truth of everything. And just like a child who sees the hidden compartment in the hat, I knew where the rabbit was the whole time and could never be fooled again.
I’m a god now, Asuka says. And she’s right. I can literally remake the world in mind and body. I cannot shirk this responsibility. The world is such a complicated, violent, bloody place. Asuka has shown me that. How can I turn my back on the world?
I won’t. I will make this sacrifice of myself. I will remake the world and return everyone to innocence. I will give them their potential back and raise them right. Mother is the name of God in the hearts of every child. Then I shall become Mother to the world.
And to Walda, my dear lost daughter who is literally always in my thoughts. Who every child I re-create is just a pale imitation of the happy baby girl I once had: I promise I’ll find you someday, no matter what. It doesn’t matter where they’ve hidden you from me, and what they’ve changed your name to. It doesn’t matter how old you are and how much of your innocence they have stolen from you. We will be a family again. We’ll start over from the beginning, and I’ll raise you as I always intended to. And you, and the rest of the world will grow up from being the perfect baby girl that I lost.
Everything is finally Spiraling into control,