THE LOFT —Chapter 5
by Van © 1996
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THE LOFT continues
The remainder of our stay at Aunt Carol's farm was relatively uneventful, from a bondage point of view. True to her word, Aunt Carol freed and forgave Erin for her supposed abuse of yours truly during my previous week-plus of captivity back at the loft. For her part, Erin was remarkably subdued, even nonchalant about her capture and "torture" at the hands of Aunt Carol and the twins (and their "fickle feathers of fate," as we started calling the twins' instruments of tickling torment.) She apologized to me for being insensitive and not balancing our bondage game with either affection or compassion. I forgave her in turn and was about to apologize to her for the liberties I had taken during the previous night's bondage in the barn, when I saw Carol signaling me to desist. I did so, not telling Erin that the insatiable tongue that had been her only companion during the previous long night had, in fact, been mine. We shared a group hug the likes of which has not been seen since the last Christmas show on Dr. Quinn and sat down to a celebratory breakfast. 

The next two weeks were characterized by fresh air, good food, and plenty of hiking, swimming, and riding. Towards the end of the second week Erin e-mailed her boss and received permission to take the promised third week of vacation, but rather than continue on the farm, Erin and I decided to return to the loft and spend our last week of freedom from toil enjoying the pleasures of the city. 

I soon learned that Erin was hatching a nefarious scheme for good-natured revenge. She enlisted me as coconspirator when we were alone that evening. We had been sharing one of the larger bedrooms and it was about time to retire when Erin revealed her plot. 

Erin looked up from her book as I turned down my bed. "I've asked the twins to be our guests next week so we can show them the city." 

"That's nice," I said. I knew the look in Erin's eye. She was up to something. "This won't be just a nice little family visit, will it? What are you planning?" 

"Revenge, my dear!" Erin rubbed her hands together with a villainous chuckle. "I'm going to find a way to capture the twins, pop them in the vault for a few hours, and make them rue the day they tickled my tootsies." 

"You're insane. Aunt Carol will kill you, figuratively of course, even if you could find a way to capture Nikki and Vikki." 

"I've already cleared this with Aunt Carol. Just as she thought I deserved a taste of my own medicine for what I did to you, she thinks the twins got entirely too much fun out of bringing me down a notch. She thinks it's time they got a taste of their own medicine." 

"Let me get this straight. Nikki and Vikki did what Carol asked them to do—so she want's them punished?" 

"I think it's more a matter of education than punishment for Carol. For me, it's revenge! Carol even suggested how we might go about it." 

"Do tell," I said. I was beginning to warm to the idea. The thought of the twins as our prisoners was delicious. 

Erin explained Carol's approach. It might work, and if it didn't, we could always wait until we got them separated, alone, and unsuspecting, and take them by brute force. Egad! Was I being seduced by "The Dark Side" of "The Force?" I was going to start wearing black and kicking puppies if this kept up. (Don't get us wrong, nothing really bad was being planned. The twins would still get their Big City Adventure, only it was going to start out with a lot more melodrama than they were expecting.) 

The twins accepted our invitation with such charming girlish enthusiasm I nearly called the whole revenge thing off, but a wink from Aunt Carol reminded me that it was all in fun (of sorts.) 

THE LOFT
—Chapter 5

We returned to the loft on a Friday night, and promptly treated the twins to dinner at one of our favorite haunts (their first taste of West Indian cuisine.) The next day we shopped 'til we dropped and returned to the loft for a night in. 

Faithful readers of this series (and God bless you all) will remember that "the loft" is a collection of brick and iron barred rooms which began life as home base for a bonded storage company and in its current incarnation was the loft apartment home for a couple of urban ingenues: yours truly, Brooke, the moppet haired, cute as the proverbial bug, munchkin of a supremely talented writer (I'm humble too); and Erin, my disgustingly beautiful red haired computer expert and roommate. (Hey!  Come to think of it, the twins, Nikki and Vikki, Erin's distant cousins, are also beautiful redheads, as is Carol, Erin's forty-something aunt and the twin's guardian and mentor. Four percent of the U.S. population is red haired, and 80% of the people in my story are carrot-tops. Something's going on here. If a dog walks into the story, it will no doubt be an Irish Setter. If we find a cat it will have to be a marmalade tiger. Oh well, on with the story.) 

The twins were watching TV in the "living room" (one of the larger spaces near the door) when we commenced our carefully rehearsed scheme. 

"I still think you did a lousy job of tying me up when I was your prisoner," I remarked to Erin as we ever so nonchalantly entered the room. "If I hadn't been rescued by Aunt Carol it would have only been a matter of time until I escaped and tied you up." 

"Hah! Real freakin' likely! That's why you were my prisoner for eight days, 'cause I did such a lousy job of tying." 

"I could have done better." 

"Could not!" 

"Could to!" 

The twins were watching our verbal sparring like it was center court at Wimbledon, heads turning in unison. Obviously we were much more interesting than the sitcom on the tube. 

"Could not!" 

"Could to!" 

"Prove it!" 

"Prove it? How can I prove it?" I asked. "Tie you up?" 

"No, that won't work. We'll have to hold a contest. We'll each tie someone up and then time their escape. The one whose rope work takes the longest to escape from is the winner." 

"Agreed, but who do we tie up?" We pretended to innocently ponder this question, all the while prepared to launch into a meticulously planned, frightfully clever dialogue fiendishly designed to maneuver the twins into volunteering for our little contest. I was about to fire the opening verbal salvo when quite unexpectedly our prey sauntered into the trap and pulled the door shut. 

"Tie us up," the twins said together. 

"It'll be fun—" 

"—and it will be a perfect contest—" 

"—because we're both—" 

"—identical." 

"I don't know," I said, pretending to be skeptical. "How do I know whichever of you gets tied by Erin won't only pretend to struggle, so she'll win. You flame-tops stick together." 

"Oh please, Brooke," pleaded the twins. 

"We promise to be fair—" 

"—and try our best to escape—" 

"—and not play favorites." 

"Please!" they finished together. 

Erin and I looked at each other in disbelief. All our carefully planned stratagems designed to make them prisoners—and they were literally begging for it. 

"Well...OK," granted Erin, "but we have to agree on the rules of the contest." 

"You really have a thing for rules and contracts, don't you," I chided. 

"I only want to be sure the contest is fair and equitable so you won't complain when I trounce you," Erin smirked. 

"My, my! Aren't we confident?" I looked at the twins as if studying a pair of dueling pistols. "We'll each randomly choose a victim, ah, er, I mean subject, and each use identical materials under identical conditions." 

"Agreed! I think I have just what we need." Erin left the room and returned with a double armload of cotton clothesline cut into various lengths and coiled into neat hanks. 

Launching into the next appropriate part of our prearranged script, I eyed the twins appraisingly with hand on chin. "What should they wear for this. We want them to have freedom of motion. Did you two bring any exercise clothes?" 

The twins looked at each other and answered together, "No." 

"Swim suits?" Erin ventured. 

"No." 

"Hum," I pondered. "I guess we'll have to go with underwear. Why don't you two strip down while Erin and I sort out the rope?" 

The twins looked at each other uncertainly as Erin went for the kill. "Underwear, my ass," she said. 

"Underwear my ass too," I deadpanned. "Why you talk like Tarzan?"

The twins laughed. 

"No, I mean it," Erin said with a smirk. "To make the contest realistic the twins should wear the same thing you were wearing most of the time when I tied you up." 

"Nothing?" I asked. 

"Nothing," she answered. 

"You want us naked?" asked Nikki. (I think it was Nikki.) 

"Oh come on!" said Erin. "Don't suddenly get all prudish on us. We all went skinny-dipping in Aunt Carol's pond last Wednesday." 

"Well..." ventured Vikki. 

"It would be more realistic that way," I cajoled. 

"OK!" the twins agreed, and began peeling off their jeans, t-shirts, and panties. 

Soon they were standing side by side in all their befreckled glory. Although they had nothing over Erin in terms of beauty, they were rather better endowed in the breast department, and they had that late-teenager muscle tone that came to them effortlessly (and that Erin and I hung onto only through regular workouts.) It was also instantly clear that last Wednesday was not the first time the twins had been skinny-dipping. They each had about triple the number of Erin's freckles, and neither twin had a hint of tan-lines (or in their case freckle-lines.) 

Erin reached into her pocket, pulled out a coin and prepared to flip it in the air towards me. 

"Call it," she said. 

"A quarter?" I ventured. 

"How droll," Erin said and tossed me the coin. 

I caught it, slapped it over the back of my left hand. "Tails," I predicted, then slowly uncovered the coin. 

"Tails it is," Erin observed. "Which tail do you want?" 

"I'll take the tail with all the freckles," I answered. 

The twins giggled. Erin gave me her patented We-are-not-amused look. 

"I'll take Vikki," I answered more seriously. 

"OK," said Erin. "Since the President isn't here to throw out the first ball-gag, I guess we'll just have to start the contest on our own. May the best villainess win,...and let's hope this doesn't end in a tie." 

The twins and I groaned. 

"She was bound to say something like that," snickered Nikki. 

"I wish she'd stayed tongue-tied," quipped Vikki. 

I picked up a length of clothesline and examined one tip. "I'm at the end of my rope," I sighed. 

"Enough!" laughed Erin. "Cut the comedy and put Vikki at the end of your rope." She then spun Nikki around and had her hold her hands behind her back, palm to palm. 

Erin went for the classical approach: wrists tied with a broad band of wrappings, cinched and knotted well out of reach; elbows tied neatly together with an even broader band of wrappings, also cinched and knotted; upper arms bound to the body with repeated tight wrappings above, below, and crossing between the breasts, cinched under the arms and anchored to the elbow bindings; several tight windings around the waist to anchor a tight set of crotch ropes that were tied off at the small of the back and to the wrist bindings; lower arms further secured with several windings around the hips and stomach, cinched around the forearms, and anchored to the back of the waist bindings; ropes wrapped and tightly cinched above and below the knees; finally (after Nikki was helped to flop down and lay flat on the couch), the ankles were crossed, wrapped, cinched, and knotted. 

The entire process took almost half an hour. Vikki and I watched mesmerized, the silence being broken only by occasional simultaneous grunts and gasps from the twins as the various parts of Nikki's bindings were cinched tight and securely knotted. Towards the end I noticed that both twins were breathing rather rapidly, and watching Vikki from the corner of the eye I noticed her hands covertly and very lightly caressing her breasts and between her legs. At least for now, the twins seemed to be enjoying themselves. Erin finished her task and we watched Nikki writhe on the couch, twisting, bending, and making her first tentative attempts to get free. This continued for several seconds, then both twins turned to Erin (well, Nikki didn't exactly turn—she sort of craned her neck), and said, "Good job." 

"Yeah, real good job," I remarked. "And you also used up two thirds of the cotton rope. What am I supposed to use?" 

"We could run down to the hardware store," answered Erin. "It's only four blocks away. I'm sure Nikki won't mind waiting an hour or two for us to return." The twins laughed, Nikki a little less enthusiastically than Vikki. 

"That won't be necessary," I said. "I'll use some of that thicker rope, the half inch braided nylon we've got in the vault." 

"That's not nearly as escape proof as the thin cotton stuff," Erin said. "I don't want you to accuse me of rigging the contest after Vikki wiggles free in ten minutes." 

"She won't be wiggling free of what I have in mind," I answered, winking at Vikki. Vikki smiled, somewhat uncertainly. 

I went to the vault and returned with several coils of the rope in question, then went behind Vikki and ran a length under her left armpit, around the back of her neck, and back under her right armpit. I tied this in a non-slipping knot between her shoulder blades (a "bowline" for the Scouts, sailors, and/or rock climbers among my readers) leaving the rest of the long coil trailing to the floor and a good two feet of free end at the knot. I tucked the free end under the rope at the nape of her neck (to keep it out of the way,) and began wrapping her upper arms in a series of loops and turns, each time pulling the entire long rope over and through each successive coil. The result was a chain of rather loose figure-eights, each joined to the next by a cinching loop between her arms. I then went back over each loop, pulling out slack and tightening each figure-eight. I repeated the process, removing even more slack, and soon Vikki's shoulders and upper arms were pulled back with her elbows nearly touching by a running hitch of fat coils extending from just below her armpits to just above her elbows. I hitched the remaining couple of feet of rope through and around the final cinch and pulled it taut. 

"Try that on for size, Vikki." 

"You're finished?" both twins asked in unison. 

"No, I'm not finished. I want you to test out phase one, Vikki" I answered, and began sorting through the remaining cotton clothesline. 

Vikki began by waving her arms and fluttering her fingers, then moved into some enthusiastic (if limited) back twists and stomach crunches. After several seconds, the only results were a little sweat, some heavy breathing, and a face full of red hair. All knots were impossible to reach, and there was no slack. Vikki tossed her head and blew vagrant strands of hair to either side as best she could. 

"Pretty tight," she observed. 

"Just stand there like a nice docile prisoner and I'll make it even tighter," I promised. It was pretty tight, but not what you could call extreme—or punishing. 

I found the longest remaining piece of clothesline and starting at about a third of the way along its length wrapped Vikki's left wrist in seven tight coils and tied the ends off in a carefully compacted square knot. I then stretched the longest free end from the left wrist across Vikki's flat stomach and captured her right wrist in seven coils which I secured with two half-hitches. Finally, I gathered the free ends from left and right, pulled and held them as taut as I could, and tied a surgeon's knot at the small of Vikki's back. Vikki's hands were now bound at her sides, with the key securing knot unreachable behind her back. No amount of twisting or pulling would free her wrists, and her groping fingers were several inches from even touching, much less untying, the fateful knot. 

I next selected a length of the thicker nylon rope, doubled it to find the center, slipped a bight under the cotton rope across Vikki's stomach, and pulled the free ends through to form a hitch (a "lark's head"), centered over her navel. I then passed both ends between her legs and through her crotch, (making sure they nestled in all the right places), threaded the ends through her elbow bonds, under the knotted cotton rope I had just knotted at the small of her back, back up through her elbow bonds, and pulled. Vikki yelped as the cotton rope encircling her stomach was tugged down about an inch in front and tugged up about an inch in back. Twisting her hands from side to side was now impossible, and everything was now much tighter. (My use of non-compacting knots to secure her wrists would insure near normal circulation to her fingers and hands.) As the final touch, I pulled taut and knotted the free end of the arm bondage I had left hanging under the rope at the nape of Vikki's neck. 

"Wow," remarked Erin. "I don't know if it's exactly new, but I've never seen anything like it. Full points for originality." 

"Full points for tightness, too," Nikki added. 

"What about her legs?" Erin asked. "She can still dance around." 

"'I won't dance—don't ask me,'" Vikki deadpanned. 

"I'll remove the option," I said. 

I used the last long piece of nylon rope to capture Vikki's right ankle in several turns which I secured with a hitch and a square knot leaving two free ends several feet in length. At my direction Vikki knelt on the rug and flopped awkwardly onto her back. I grabbed her right ankle, pushed until her heel touched her buttocks and took three doubled wrappings of rope completely around right ankle and upper right thigh. Two frappings between ankle and thigh and a square knot later, and her right knee was held permanently bent and any flopping around she could accomplish would only be called dancing by an unusually demented devotee of the avant-garde. I rolled her over onto her stomach and secured the final two feet of ankle rope to the body ropes at the small of her back with a flourish of hitches and square knots. 

Erin surveyed my work and nodded in apparent satisfaction. "What about the left foot?" 

"Ever hear the expression ‘less is more?'" I gathered up the remaining scraps of rope and tossed them in a handy drawer. "She can't go anywhere on just one left foot, but it might be entertaining to watch her try." 

"What a devilish notion," Erin applauded. "There is a sort of perverse counterpoint to one free limb." 

"Thank you," I said with a nod. "I guess we're about ready to start the competition. Doesn't your wristwatch have a stopwatch function?" 

"Not so fast!" Erin responded. "I'm not about to let my subject use her teeth and jaws to gnaw through her ropes. Some gagging is in order." 

The twins groaned and began spirited protests. 

"Not gags!" 

"Teeth and jaws?!" 

"Do you think we're beavers—" 

"—or something?" 

Erin and I exchanged bemused looks. 

"Are you going to take that one?" I asked. 

"The 'beavers or something' remark you mean?" Erin smirked. 

"Yeah," I answered. "I won't touch it. To obvious." 

"Too easy," Erin agreed. "Can the complaints, ladies. Distressed damsels should be seen and not heard." 

Erin and I left the twins to a little pre-game struggling and set about gathering our gagging supplies. 

In keeping with the traditional theme she had used up until now, Erin returned with several large scarves and proceeded to pack Nikki's mouth with one, cleave-gag her with another, fold a third over her lips, hold that in place with a fourth, and cover everything with a fifth. All very tight (bulging cheeks, straining jaw, etc.), all very effective (inarticulate moans, nasal humming, etc.), and all very classical. I applauded politely, gathered my supplies and went to work. 

I had been determined to be original, but everything new in the way of gags I could think of was either, far too elaborate, potentially dangerous, or of questionable effectiveness. I finally settled on a variation on the bathing cap and tape routine. The night before I had taken my oldest rubber racing cap and cut a hole in the back. I now pulled most of Vikki's hair through the hole, giving her a sort of top-knot ponytail, stretched the cap over her skull and snapped the strap under her chin. I stuffed a large kitchen sponge in her mouth, and secured it there with a tight cleave-gag of several turns of white plastic tape, the kind that stretches just a little. Repeated tight wrappings of the same tape under chin and over the top of her head encouraged her to bite down on the sponge. Next came a series of wrappings from the point of her chin to the back of her head, from the nape of her neck across the bridge of her nose, and circling her forehead, all designed to anchor tape to bathing cap and tape to tape. Finally, carefully layered wrappings from nose to chin completely covered and sealed her lips. I was very proud of my efforts and thought the stark white near helmet of tape and rubber went well with the rest of Vikki's ensemble. (Only much later did I learn that the legendary John Willie had thought of nearly the same thing decades earlier when he showed the world what happened when Toni Goes to the Bondage Ball—although the maid's treatment of poor Toni was much, much rougher than my treatment of Vikki.) 

"You have a real flair for this, you know?" remarked Erin. 

"Thank you very much," I answered primly. "I've had good teachers." 

Erin smiled and surveyed the bound and silent twins. "OK, you two. You can escape now." Nikki and Vikki sighed and exchanged glances as if they'd been told to start hovering in mid-air, spin straw into gold, control government spending, or do something equally impossible. Several seconds of unenthusiastic and completely ineffective groping and twisting ensued. "Oh, by the way," Erin added with a gloating grin. "If you two don't start showing considerably more effort towards regaining your freedom, I'm going to haul you into the vault and do to you what you did to me in Aunt Carol's barn." 

The twins squealed through their gags and their attempted escapes immediately became much more exuberant, athletic, and determined. Erin and I settled into easy chairs and enjoyed the floor show. (After five minutes it became a true floor show when Nikki's struggles became a little too enthusiastic and she rolled off the couch and onto the rug.) 

Although I could tell Erin was as fascinated by the spectacle as I, we made a game of feigning indifference. As the twins writhed, struggled, and worked up a healthy sweat, Erin and I pretended to watch TV. The sitcom the twins had been watching when we first entered the room was long since over, and a made-for-TV crime-thriller had taken its place. When the show finally ground around to the obligatory cute-but-feisty-female-partner-of-the-detective-captured-and-used-as-bait scene, Erin and I held an impromptu critical forum on the psycho-bad-guy's binding and gagging technique. The panel agreed that the ropes were too few, were too loosely tied, were very poorly placed, and the so-called gag would be completely ineffectual and could have been easily removed by the supposed hostage. We gave the scene "two thumbcuffs down," although the actress did do a credible job of selling her plight (she managed to get in some good struggling without the ropes falling off), and the director did throw in a few good teary-eyed, frustrated spitfire type closeups. 

By the time the credits were rolling and the announcer was enticing us to stay tuned for the late news, considerably more than an hour had passed, and the twins had made absolutely no progress in their escapes, although they had managed to roll over virtually every square inch of the carpet, (getting quite a bit of dirt and lint plastered to their sweaty selves in the process.) 

"I guess the contest is a draw," I remarked. (This evoked highly positive reactions from the twins.) 

Erin paused for several seconds, then smiled and said "I think we should give them more time." (This evoked highly negative reactions from the twins.) "In fact, lets give them all night." (Very, very negative reactions from the twins.) 

"I don't plan to stay up all night to referee their efforts," I said. 

"Neither do I," Erin said. "Whatever will we do?" 

We smiled at our tightly bound guests and said together, "Let's put them in the vault!" 

We used an old blanket to haul the wiggling and squealing twins to the center cage of the vault, one at a time. I used a stray length of rope to tie Vikki's previously unencumbered left ankle to a cage bar on the right side, and Erin used a second length to secure Nikki's ankles to the left cage wall. 

"Now you two won't be able to help each other escape after Brooke and I have retired to our oh-so-comfortable beds," Erin explained. 

We removed the twin's gags (Aunt Carol had taught us that you never leave a tight gag on an unattended playmate), releasing a wet sponge, a soggy scarf, and a torrent of protests. 

"Not all night!" 

"Please! We're sorry we—" 

"—tickled your feet—" 

"—back at the farm, Erin." 

"Aunt Carol—" 

"—made us do it." 

Erin and I exchanged bemused looks as Erin locked the cage door and I turned off the light. 

"I could tell you were both really sorry you had to torture me with those feathers most of the afternoon," Erin said sarcastically. "'Aunt Carol made us do it.' Give me a break!" 

The vault door swung shut on two very contrite young ladies doomed to several hours of bondage in a dark, inescapable dungeon. Erin and I exchanged satisfied grins and prepared to retire for the evening. 

"Remember your promise," I admonished Erin. "We let them go in the morning, and your revenge will be over." 

"Of course!" answered Erin, with a slightly hurt, you-mean-you-don't- trust-me? expression. (Based on what happened later that night she probably had her fingers crossed behind her back, but I somewhat naively took her at her word.) 

THE END
—Chapter  5





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