Oh My!
Rigorous
              Research


 by Van ©2018

Chapter 5


DRAMATIS PERSONÆ



OUR STORY CONTINUES


Her first night at Cedar Wind Farm Robin slept like the proverbial log.  At her usual time she awoke, bounded down the stairs to the guest bathroom, and conducted her morning toilette, including a quick shower.  She noted there was no sign of Leda, who should have been up and competing with her for the use of the washbasin, commode, and shower.  Apparently (and uncharacteristically) her BFF had decided to sleep in.  Robin returned to her "Tower" guestroom, changed into the ratty jeans and old t-shirt Leda had been so adamant that she should wear, then bounded down the stairs and made her way to the kitchen.

Miriam was already up and was preparing breakfast for four in the form of eggs-to-order, pancakes, bacon, sausage, toast, coffee or tea, sliced fruit, and orange juice.

"Good morning, Robin," Miriam said with a broad smile.  "I hope you slept well."

"Good morning, Miriam," Robin replied.  "I did, thank you."  As she used her hostess' single-cup coffee maker to prepare a cup of coffee, she noticed movement through the kitchen window.  It was Jordan, dressed in jeans and a tank-top and playing with Pooka, Bugbear, Renfrir, and Kelpie, her Irish wolfhound siblings.

"When she's home," Miriam explained, joining Robin at the window, "Jordan enjoys taking care of the pack.  I think she'd sleep with them in the dog run if I let her."

Robin smiled and enjoyed her first sip of coffee.  Jordan was chasing her canine brothers and sisters and being chased in turn.  There was also a great deal of licking and play-biting (on the wolfhounds' part).

Just then Leda dragged herself into the kitchen.  She was dressed in her painting costume (ripped jeans and a ratty tank-top), but was not her usual perky self.

"Mornin'," Leda muttered, then her eyes brightened, she made a bee-line for her BFF, snatched the coffee mug from her hands, and took a sip.  "Ahhh," she sighed, then handed the mug back to Robin.  "Thank you."

"You're quite welcome," Robin chuckled, exchanging a bemused smile with Miriam.

Suddenly, the door to the kitchen porch opened and Jordan appeared.  "Morning," she said with a broad smile.

Miriam gave her daughter a peck on the cheek, then pointed at the kitchen sink.  "Wash you brother's and sisters' slobber off you face and hands," she ordered.

"Yes, Mother," Jordan sighed, then winked at Robin and Leda as she carried out the maternal command.  "As if I wouldn't anyway."

"What was that, dear?" Miriam inquired.

"Nothing, Mother," Jordan purred as she dried her hands.

By the time breakfast was over, Robin noted that her BFF seemed to have recovered from whatever had suddenly turned her into a late riser.  They all shared in the cleanup, then Miriam led the way from the kitchen, across the yard, and to the garden shed.

The shed was similar in style to the main house, barn, and garage, but unlike the main house, was entirely of wood construction with cedar clapboard siding.  About the size of a one-car garage, it had double doors for easy access, a couple of small, high windows to provide natural light, and held a riding lawnmower, a dozen or so gardening tools in neat racks or hanging from hooks, and a few bags of topsoil and compost.  One additional minor detail: clearly, most of the shed had recently been freshly painted.

"Mother!" Jordan complained.  "You said you'd wait for us.  You know I don't like you going up on the ladder when you're the only one here."

"I didn't go up on the ladder," Miriam answered.  "I used a roller and a pole to paint under the eaves—that was the worst part, by the way—and only painted the siding on three sides.  The rest of the trim and the corner-boards still need painting and you girls can help me with that."

"Oh, Mother," Jordan sighed, shaking her head.  "Get back in the house and cook a turkey or sew a quilt or do whatever else you were gonna do other than paint."

Robin and Leda exchanged carefully disguised smirks and managed not to break out laughing.

"I suppose I could start the pot roast," Miriam said with a smile.  "It's better slow-roasted on low, anyway."  She smiled at Robin and Leda.  "You girls let me know when you want some lemonade," she added, then turned and strolled towards the house.

"Sorry about this," Jordan sighed.  "I wouldn't have hauled you two out here if I'd known there was only a couple of hours of work involved.  I don't like Mother up on the ladder and—"

"Pshaw," Leda interrupted.  "We can knock this off in one hour, once we get organized, then spend the rest of the week vegging out."  Her face brightened.  "I know!  We can go backpacking on Mysterious Mountain!"

"Mysterious Mountain?" Robin inquired.

Jordan pointed at a distant forested hill.  "We call it Mysterious Mountain.  It's more like Mysterious Bump.  As the crow flies, it's only about five miles to the summit—if you want to call it that—but there's a really nice three day trail with good camping sites, including one on top with a nice view.  It's a decent workout, even if the trails aren't all that steep."  She focused on Leda.  "Only one problem."

"What?" Leda demanded, then her smile faded.  "Oh, you only have two backpacks, right?"  She sighed.  "If you'd told us we were going hiking, Robin and I would have brought our own backpacks."

"Who knew we were going backpacking?" Jordan shrugged.

Robin was still smiling.  "Yeah.  Who knew?  Besides, it would be rude to leave Miriam behind, all alone."  She smiled at Jordan.  "Unless Miriam has her own backpack and would be joining us?"

Jordan shook her head.  "Mom's right knee is tricky.  Another reason I don't want her up on ladders.  Also, somebody has to stay and take care of the dogs."

Leda heaved another sigh.  "Well then... if somebody has to stay."  She favored her BFF with a sad smile.  "I'll do it."

Robin chuckled.  "That is so like you, volunteering to stay behind so you can play with the wolfhounds and eat Miriam's cooking while I haul my ass up and down a mountain and eat freeze-dried gorp."  She shifted her smile to Jordan, who was smiling back.  "You do have freeze-dried food, right?  The kind in foil pouches?"

Jordan nodded.  "Stroganoff, beef stew, chicken tetrazinni...  Sorry, no gorp."

"No gorp?" Robin sighed.  "In that case..."  She turned back to her BFF.  "You go backpacking and I'll keep Miriam company."

Leda squealed in delight, hugged her BFF, and jumped up and down with glee.  "Oh, goody-goody-goody!"

"Chill," Robin chuckled.  "Let's paint the shed."

Jordan pointed at the row of paint cans, brushes, and rollers just inside the shed door.  "You guys finish up the painting.  I'll go break the news to Mom that Leda and I are thoughtlessly abandoning her to go backpacking, then get the gear organized."

"Sounds like a plan," Robin said with a grin.

Leda was still hopping up and down.  "Goody-goody-goody!"

Robin and Jordan exchanged tolerant smiles, then Jordan turned and headed for the house.

"Stop acting like the doofus you are and get to work," Robin ordered her BFF.

"Okay," Leda giggled.  "I'll start on the trim and you finish the back wall."

And with that, the roomies set to work.


Rigorous Research 
 Chapter 5

The BFFs finished painting the garden shed with only a few drips and dabs of paint on their jeans, tops, and/or exposed skin.  They'd taken the precaution of putting small plastic bags over their sneaker-clad feet, so their footwear had emerged from the fray paint free.  By the time they'd cleaned the brushes and rollers, it was time for an early lunch.

Miriam had changed out of her painting clothes and into one of her pretty cotton dresses.  She'd prepared turkey sandwiches and iced tea, and suggested they eat on the deck before Robin and Leda changed.  Jordan joined them, still wearing her painting costume, and once the meal was over, Miriam asked Robin to help her with the kitchen cleanup while Jordan and Leda finished their preparations for the backpacking expedition. 

Once she changed, Jordan announces she was all set to go.  Her backpack was packed and ready and her spare pack and Leda's share of the camping gear and food already laid out in Leda's guestroom.  All Leda had to do was take a quick shower, select a few clothes and pack the pack, and they could depart.  If they hustled, Jordan explained, they'd easily reach the first campsite before dark.  The next day they'd continue up the "Mountain" and spend the night on the summit, then continue down the far slope and spend the third night at the third campsite.  They should get back to Cedar Wind Farm no later than the afternoon of the fourth day—maybe a little later if they paused for a swim in a small lake a few miles from the farm.

Robin was feeling a little jealous of her BFF.  Neither of them were all that big on The Great Outdoors, but the trip sounded like fun.  Miriam seemed to sense her attitude and assured her they'd have a lot of fun once they had the farm to themselves.

"Uh, sure," Robin agreed.

"Wait a little longer for your shower," Miriam suggested to Robin once the kitchen was restored to its usual spotless state.  "You'll want to be here to see them off."

This made perfect sense, so Robin agreed.  "Okay."  She adjourned with Miriam to the deck, where they sat in lounge chairs and finished their iced teas and watched the dogs romp on the lawn.  Robin had already unwrapped and removed her sneakers, so her feet were bare, but she was still wearing her old jeans and t-shirt.

Finally—after what was a surprisingly short interval, actually—Jordan and Leda emerged from the house, dressed for the trail and lugging their backpacks.

Jordan had changed into Kletter-style hiking boots, wool socks, tan cargo shorts, a faded brown t-shirt, and a chambray work-shirt with the sleeves rolled up.  A floppy, olive-green, wide-brimmed hat topped her head and her long brown hair was pulled back in a tight ponytail.  Her nylon backpack was silver-gray and appeared to be more-or-less new.

Leda was also wearing Kletter boots, wool socks, a mini-sports-kilt in a pretty green plaid Robin recognized as the "All-Ireland Tartan,"
a moss-green cotton shirt with the sleeves rolled up, and a faded blue ball-cap.  Like Jordan, her long brown hair was pulled back in a ponytail.  Her backpack, which Robin surmised was Jordan's old backpack, was made of visibly worn olive-green nylon, and had an external aluminum frame.

Miriam and Robin climbed to their feet.

"Sunscreen?" Miriam inquired.

"Yes, Mother," Jordan responded.

"Insect repellent?"

"Yes, Mother."

"Toilet paper?"

Jordan rolled her eyes.  "No, Mother, we're planning on using leaf litter and tree moss."

"Don't you smartmouth me, young lady," Miriam chuckled, pulled her daughter close, and gave her a warm kiss.  Hugs and kisses were exchanged all around (except between Leda and Jordan).

The hikers shouldered their packs.  "Well, we're off," Jordan announced.

"Truer words were never spoken," Leda giggled and the others laughed—except for Jordan—who favored her trail partner with a pained expression (and a tiny smirk).

"You girls have fun," Miriam said as the backpackers stepped off.

"You girls also have fun," Jordan chuckled.

"Later!" Leda added as they tromped down the stairs from the deck to the lawn.

Miriam and Robin waved and Jordan and Leda waved back.  The dogs bounced around and begged to accompany the hikers, which Miriam and Robin found quite entertaining, but the disappointed canines returned to Miriam when she called.  Then... Jordan and Leda disappeared into the cedar forest.

"I guess I'll go take that shower now," Robin sighed.

"Not yet, dear," Miriam responded, smiling and taking Robin's hand.  "Come with me to the barn.  There's something we need to discuss."

Robin shrugged.  "Okay."

"It's about your research project with Leda," Miriam purred.

Robin swallowed nervously (for some reason).  "Oh, that," she muttered, and allowed herself to be led from the deck.


Rigorous Research   Chapter 5

The hikers were only a mile from Cedar Wind Farm when Jordan suddenly called a halt and shrugged out of her pack.

"Why are we stopping?" Leda demanded, fumbling with the nylon buckle of her borrowed pack's padded hip-belt.

"No!" Jordan barked, slapping Leda's hands away from the buckle.  "Grab the bottom of the frame on either side."

"Huh?"

Jordan rolled her eyes as she reached into a side pocket of her pack.  "Grab the bottom of the frame, as if you're using your hands to help support the weight of the pack."

Leda did so, noting for the first time that there were a pair of rubber-padded handholds positioned on either side of the frame's lowest horizontal cross-bar.

Jordan leaned close and—"Click!"—closed and tightened some sort of padded cuff around Leda's right wrist and the right side of the frame.

"Hey!" Leda complained, tugging on her wrist.  It was now bound to the outer frame by a narrow, thinly padded strip of nylon webbing that wrapped around her wrist and secured with a plastic snap-buckle.  Her right hand was now permanently gripping the hand-grip.  She could flutter her fingers and twist her wrist (slightly), but that was about it.  And—"Click!"—now her left wrist was also secured to the frame!  "Jordan!" she whined, mustering her best betrayed pout (with trembling lower lip).

Smiling a truly blood-chilling (and beautiful) smile, Jordan ignored Leda's tragic displeasure and tightened the strap of the pack's padded hip-belt, then released the narrow, horizontal sternum strap formerly joining the thickly padded shoulder straps.

"What are you doing?"  Leda demanded.  Actually, what Jordan was doing was quite obvious.  She was unbuttoning Leda's shirt!  And now, she was tying its tails together, exposing her midriff, bellybutton (with the cute little jeweled post in her pierced navel), and her heather-gray, spandex sports bra.  Then, Leda's eyes popped wide in alarm.  "Jordan!"

"Quiet," Jordan purred.  She'd just pulled a medium-sized Swiss Army Knife from a pouch on the side of her pack and was unfolding its scissors tool.

Leda's bra was now the center of Jordan's attention.  The underlying nipple-stirrups were causing distinctively shaped pokies in the stretched fabric, providing easy targets for Jordan fingers.  She pinched the spandex and stretched it away from Leda's right nipple, then used the scissors tool to snip off a short length of fabric.  The spandex snapped back, and now Leda's right nipple and nipple-stirrup were fully exposed, surrounded by a ragged circle.

"You're paying for that," Leda huffed.

Jordan's answer was to stretch and snip the left bra-cup in a similar fashion.  "There," she purred, "now both nipples and stirrups are free to breathe."

"I'm serious," Leda muttered.  "I'm sending you a bill."

"No problem," Jordan chuckled as she folded the scissors back into the knife and returned it to her pack.  "I was already planning on giving you a Victoria's Secret gift card for Christmas."

Leda cocked an eyebrow.  "Really?  How much?  It better be at least fifty dollars."  And then, her eyes popped wide, again, and her whine returned.  "Jordan!"

Jordan had reached into her shorts pocket and produced a twelve-inch-long light steel chain of nested links with a tiny carabiner-style spring-clip at each end, and she was now snapping the clips through Leda's stirrups.  She then re-secured and tightened the sternum-strap of Leda's pack.  The plastic snap-buckle closed with quiet click.

"Make that a hundred dollars," Leda huffed as she rolled her shoulders.  It wasn't much of a roll, thanks to the bulk and weight of the pack, but it was enough to make the stirrup-to-stirrup chain shake wildly.

"On second thought," Jordan chuckled, smiling at the swaying chain.  "I'll probably visit the store in person and do the shopping myself.  I bet they have some ultra-frilly, somewhat slutty, open-cup bras and crotch-less panties in pretty colors."  She then lifted Leda's mini-kilt and pulled her panties down to her booted ankles.

Leda's gaze was on her exposed and chained nipples.  "This is stupid," she complained.  "What if we run into other hikers?"

"Highly unlikely," Jordan chuckled.  "Step free," she ordered, and Leda did so (grudgingly).  Jordan held the panties before Leda's frowning face.  "Now I have something to stuff in your big mouth if you don't stop whining."  She tucked the panties into a pouch on Leda's pack, then pulled a small coil of coyote-brown parachute cord from the right side-pouch of her own pack.

Leda bit her lower lip and watched as Jordan released the hitch retaining the coil, looped one end over her nipple-stirrup-to-nipple-stirrup-chain, and tied a quick bowline.  The captive pack-pony (and obviously that was now Leda's role in the expedition) managed to
refrain from whining, but it was a near thing.  She couldn't help but pout, of course, or more correctly, continue pouting.

Jordan shouldered her pack, secured the hip-belt and sternum-strap, then tied a generous loop in the far end of Leda's nipple-stirrup-leash, slipped it over her right wrist, and smiled at her fellow hiker.  "If you need to tinkle, just let me know.  After I give you permission, you can then step off the trail and spread your legs.  You might try lifting one leg, like a doggie, but the weight of the pack will probably make that too awkward.  Perhaps you should try squatting, instead."

Leda glowered at her captor and ignored the Searing Agony (meaning the Barely Noticeable Discomfort) of her ever-so-slightly-stretched nipples.  "I hate you," she huffed.  "Just you wait.  You'll get yours."

Jordan grinned.  "Off we go," she purred, then stepped off.

The leash-cord threatened to snap taut, so Leda heaved a sigh and quickly followed.


Rigorous Research   Chapter 5

Miriam was still holding Robin's hand as they entered the barn.  It was Robin's first time inside the structure, but Leda had told her it had been Jordan's first workshop, before she joined Archer Metals, so she wasn't surprised to see a small forge, a work table, and an anvil off to one side.  The rest of the barn appeared to be empty horse stalls, a couple of side rooms, and an overhead loft.

Miriam led her guest to what was more or less the center of the barn and pointed to the dirt floor under their feet.  "Stay," she ordered with a smile.

"Yes, ma'am," Robin answered, smiling back.  She watched Miriam stroll to a wooden trunk off to the side.  She lifted the lid... and returned with two short coils of quarter-inch hemp rope.  Robin blinked in surprise.  "What are you gonna...?  Oh!"

Miriam had dropped one of the coils, spun Robin around, pulled her hands behind her back, and was using the other coil to bind Robin's wrists together with her hands palm-to-palm.  Robin offered no resistance, but her eyes were wide and her heart had started pounding.

Task accomplished, Miriam knelt and used the first coil to bind Robin's ankles.

Robin tugged on her expertly bound wrists and watched as Miriam turned, walked away, and returned with a folded wooden chair.  She unfolded the chair and sat, facing her incredulous prisoner/guest, then demurely crossed her legs and arranged the skirt of her very pretty printed dress.  "You might be more comfortable on the floor," she suggested, once again pointing at the dirt under Robin's bare feet.

Robin blinked for several seconds... then carefully knelt, settled onto her denim-clad rump, and supported her upper body by leaning back on her bound hands.  She locked eyes with her smiling captor/hostess.  "Why did you..."  She already knew why she was bound hand and foot.  "Oh...  Research."

"Research," Miriam agreed.  "I think you'll agree that being taken captive and held prisoner by someone other than your roommate and best friend makes for a much better experiment.  Don't you agree?"

Robin swallowed nervously before answering.  "Uh, yeah.  I suppose."

Miriam was still smiling.  "My late husband and I used to dabble in such things," she said.  "He was a kind, gentle man... who knew exactly how to keep me under strict control."

Robin swallowed, again, imagining a young Miriam Price, bound and helpless... like I am right now, Robin thought, bound and helpless.

"It's been years since I've had a chance to play with rope," Miriam continued.  "I used to help Jordan and her childhood friends with their innocent rope games, of course, but that hardly counts.  Don't you agree?"

"I should hope not," Rodin responded in a near whisper, then blushed.  "Uh, yeah.  I agree."

"Anyway," Miriam continued.  She uncrossed her legs, stood, and strolled across the barn to Jordan's workshop area.

Robin tugged on her wrist-bonds and watched as Miriam opened a drawer in an old storage cabinet, then returned.  Dangling from her right hand was... "Oh, my." ...a black rubber ball attached to a black leather strap that secured by means of a shining steel buckle.  She locked eyes with Miriam as her smiling hostess (and captor) drew near.  "What's that?" she demanded, then her blush deepened.  Robin knew exactly what Miriam was holding in her hand.  It was a ball-gag.

"Silly girl," Miriam chuckled as she stepped behind Robin, knelt, reached over Robin's head, and held the ball in front of her guest's wide-eyed face.

"W-what if I promise not to scream?" Robin inquired.  "There's nobody here to hear me, anyway.  Except for you... and the dogs."

"It's far too early for parole negotiations," Miriam purred.  "A genuine captor would have to establish her dominance right away."

"I suppose that's true in general," Robin conceded. "but in this case—Mrrrpfh!"  In mid-sentence Miriam had popped the ball into her mouth, and now she was threading the buckle at the nape of her neck!  There was a pause while Miriam freed her hair from under the strap, then she tightened the strap until Robin's cheeks bulged—Mrrrf!—and secured the buckle.  Robin tossed her head and tried to work her jaws.  Her somewhat tousled hair fluttered, but the rubber ball was in her mouth to stay... until Miriam decided otherwise.

"There," Miriam said, then gave Robin's gagged head a reassuring (condescending) pat, stood, brushed the dirt from her knees, straightened her dress, and once again strolled to the open trunk.

Robin squirmed on her denim-clad butt, shook her gagged head, continued testing her new gag, and watched as Miriam returned with a very generous coil of quarter-inch hemp rope.  With surprising skill (surprising for Robin, anyway) Miriam released the coil's retaining hitch and tossed one end up and over a rafter several feet above their heads.  Robin flinched as the bulk of the rope slapped the dirt floor near her bound and newly gagged body.  Next, Miriam, tied a simple noose in the end of the rope still in her hand, and then—"Mrrrk!"—dropped the noose over Robin's incredulous, gagged head, and cinched it around her neck!  The rope wasn't especially tight, but it was definitely there!

"Up," Miriam ordered and helped Robin to stand.  "Now," she said with a warm smile, "remember, I'm playing the role of a genuine captor."  And with that, she began hauling in the rope!

"Mrrrf!"  Robin danced and squirmed on her bare and ankle-bound feet as the rope became taut!  She took two short, careful hops across the floor, traveling the eighteen or so inches required until the rope around her neck was vertical.

"A genuine captor wouldn't take any chances with her prisoner," Miriam lectured, still smiling.  "She'd use every form of coercion available, like holding the threat of harming her captive's friends or family members over her prisoner's pretty little head, or..."  She hauled in an inch or two of rope, until Robin had no choice but to go up on her toes!  "Physical intimidation."

"Mrrrf!"  Robin's eyes were wide, her bulging cheeks flushed, and, thanks to the ball-gag, drool was dripping from her lower lip.

Miriam relaxed the rope, letting Robin back down off her toes and onto her bare feet.  "I'm sure you agree that such tactics, however unpleasant, would be both prudent and effective."

Robin nodded her head, rather frantically.

"Oh, darling," Miriam chuckled, then kissed Robin's forehead.  "By all means, get into the spirit of the exercise, but always remember that I'm only role-playing a villainess."
Uh, oh!
Robin blinked in alarmed amazement as sweet, kind, smiling Miriam Price sauntered across the barn to the workshop, maintaining the tension on the neck-rope as she went, then looped the end around the anvil and tied a slip-knot.  She then rummaged among the old tools scattered on the workbench... selected a pair of utility scissors, found a small can of WD-40, dripped a few drops of oil onto the scissors, then used a dirty, disreputable rag to wipe them down.  Apparently satisfied with the state of the tool, she smiled sweetly at Robin and strolled back in her direction, clacking the scissors together.

What's she gonna... Oh!  Robin watched as Miriam knelt at her bare feet, grasped the cuff of the left leg of her jeans with her left hand, opened the scissors in her right hand, and—Miriam!—began slicing her way up her leg!  Robin's options were twofold: (1.) to stand as still as a statue, or, (2.) to wiggle like a worm.  She chose the statue option.  Between the noose and her bound wrists and ankles, her position was mildly precarious.  In any case, she knew the worm option would be a futile and pointless gesture.

Miriam sliced the left leg of Robin's jeans all the way up to the waistband, then shifted position and sliced her way up Robin's right leg.  Finally, she cut the waistband, tugged the jeans from Robin's body, and tossed them onto the folding chair.

Robin blushed and blinked in distress as Miriam stood and sliced away her t-shirt... followed by her bra... and finally, her panties!  One by one, her ruined clothing items joined the jeans, forming a pile on the chair... and she was now nude!  Nude, bound hand and foot, ball-gagged, and mortified!  Also (inexplicably) there was a thrill rippling between Robin's legs, and it refused to be overwhelmed by fear, terror, or the general lack of social propriety.  Robin knew Miriam was only pretending to be a callous kidnapper, she was sure of it, but the situation was kinky and decidedly naughty.  Robin decided to go with the flow.  Also, she was very much aware that she had no choice but to go with the flow.

While Robin struggled to come to terms with her bound and gagged nudity, Miriam returned to the old trunk and began rummaging through its remaining contents.

Robin watched with interest as Miriam gathered an armload of several coils of hemp rope, spun on her heel, and returned to her side.

"Any villainess worth her salt would make absolutely sure that her captive damsel was completely helpless," Miriam purred as she arranged the coils in a neat row on the floor.  She selected a coil, released its retaining hitch, doubled it to find the center, then formed a loop, preparing it for use.  "So, in the spirit of the exercise, I'm afraid I'm going to have to make absolutely certain that you don't escape."

I suppose, Robin silently conceded, in the spirit of the exercise.  Her heart was pounding, again, and her nipples were standing at attention (for some reason).  However, at the moment, the thrill between her legs seemed to have gone into hiding.

Over the course of the next half-hour, Miriam demonstrated her skill as a rigger.  (Leda had explained to Robin that an expert in the binding of damsels was afforded the coveted title of "rigger.")  When the proverbial dust settled, Robin was bound in a complex web of rope from shoulders to ankles, including neat horizontal bands pinning her arms to her sides, above and below her breasts—pressing her elbows close until they were only about four inches apart—encircling her waist and forearms—cleaving her butt-cheeks and labia and anchoring her bound wrists against her butt—and binding her legs together at mid-thighs, above and below her knees, around her shins and calves, and, of course, her ankles.  Also, from her shoulders down, diagonal ropes linked and cinched all of Robin's bonds.

Next, Miriam used two lengths of thin hemp cord, first to bind Robin's thumbs together... and then to bind her big toes.  Why, Robin had no idea.  What am I supposed to do with my thumbs and toes? she wondered.  Nothing, of course, but it certainly made her feel even more helpless.  Then Robin realized that enhancing her feeling of helplessness was the point of the thumb and toe bondage, and it was working.

Finally, Miriam untied the knot enforcing the noose around Robin's neck, threaded the vertical rope through the nexus of ropes between her shoulder blades, pulled out the slack, and tied a well-compacted, redundant knot.

As Robin was no longer in danger of hanging herself if she struggled, she began testing Miriam's handiwork in earnest.  Shuffling her feet was out of the question, thanks to her bound toes, but twisting, squirming, writhing, and tugging on any and all of her rope bonds was entirely feasible... and quickly proved to be a total waste of time and effort.  The vertical rope linking her to the rafter quivered and shook as she struggled, then went taut when she tried leaning to the side.  She wasn't going to fall, obviously.  In fact, she wasn't going anywhere.  Robin was naked, bound, gagged, and helpless.  Robin was a prisoner.

Meanwhile, Miriam had gathered Robin's ruined clothes and rolled then together into a tight bundle.  "This will all go into the fire pit, of course."  She cupped Robin's saliva dripping chin with her right hand, kissed her forehead, stepped back, folded the chair and returned it to its former place, then strolled towards the barn door.  "Well, I have chores to finish," she announced as she opened the door.  "You can continue with the experiment.  And before we know it, it'll be dinnertime.  Pot roast makes a really good sandwich.  I quite enjoy them."  She smiled at her naked, bound and gagged prisoner.  "You aren't hungry, are you?"

Robin's stomach grumbled in tentative interest.  Lunch had been recent and delicious, but a juicy pot-roast sandwich sounded delicious.  "Mrrrk!" 

"I didn't think so," Miriam purred.  "More for me."  She then closed the barn door.

Robin heaved a gagged sigh, then gave her bonds another squirming, twisting test.  This dislodged a few drops of saliva (which splashed her bobbing breasts), but that was the only result.  Obviously, Miriam really was a competent rigger.

Captured, Robin mused, stripped naked, tied up, gagged with a ball-gag, helpless, and abandoned...  This is a much better experiment than playing silly tie-up games with Leda back in the apartmentShe resumed testing her bonds, and once again the vertical rope quivered (and her crotch-rope slid back and forth a fraction of an inch when she tugged on her wrist-bonds).  I can't wait to write this up in my journal... after Miriam unties me.


Rigorous Research   Chapter 5


The 
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