Nice jacket!

Oh, the Humanities! by Van ©2012

Chapter 3

Dramatis Personæ


"They'll never find your body," Clem promised.  "I haven't decided between a steel drum dropped in the ocean or a shallow grave out in the boonies, but they'll never find your body."

"Seventeen type-B desks, all intact," Gwen responded, "and you've already told me all that, like a gazillion times.  I'm terrified."  Obviously, the grinning redhead was not terrified.

Clem tapped the iPad's touch-screen, entering the inventory data.  "But first—"

"I know, I know!" Gwen interrupted.  "I'll suffer the tortures of the damned.  You'll tie me up so tight I won't be able to squirm, tickle my feet, spank my butt, dye my hair lime green, day-glow orange, or half-and-half.  One medium table and a lectern, both intact."

Clem added the new information and the BFFs turned to the back of the classroom.

"Two more medium tables, intact, and two straight chairs, also intact," Gwen counted.  "All I did was tie you to a chair.  I don't know why you're making such a Federal Case out of it.  And I already said you can take your revenge whenever you want."

"That's it for this floor," Clem said, tapping the iPad, "except for that storeroom.  Maybe I'll tie you to a tree, miles and miles from nowhere, pour a gallon of honey over your naked body, and let the ants and bears eat you."

"Whatever," Gwen said, still smiling.  The girls left the classroom.  Gwen locked the door, then slapped a sticker on the plastic room number sign designating its status as already having been inventoried.

They were three days into the task of tabulating the furniture in Nicholson Hall's classrooms and other spaces.  Campus Housing had kicked them out of their old room.  The entire dorm was scheduled for industrial cleaning and repainting before the start of the next academic year; however, they'd been assigned one of the tiny bungalows in what was jokingly called the Grad Student Ghetto.  It was a small neighborhood next to the main campus of townhouse-like buildings comprised of one-bedroom and studio apartments.  They were normally reserved for grad students and visiting faculty, but this time of year there was room for a pair of undergrads, especially since the Salamandras Corporation would be paying their rent at the premium contractor rate.

"Tell me again, what are we supposed to do in the storerooms?" Gwen asked as they walked down the hall to the space in question.  "I forget."

Clem rolled her eyes.  "We count any furniture, including built-in shelves, note the presence of books and other items that might require the attention of a librarian or a curator from one of the campus museums, etc."

"Et cetera?"

Clem grinned.  "It's Latin for—"

"I know what it means!" Gwen huffed.  They'd reached the storeroom door and she was turning a key in the lock.  "In the case of 'other items' what does it mean?"

Clem sighed.  "We open any boxes or cases and look inside.  We put anything like old cleaning supplies or obvious trash out in the hallway for disposal, and everything else is left in situ."

"More Latin," Gwen noted as she opened the door.  The space beyond was more walk-in closet than storeroom.  Gwen clicked on the overhead light.  There were a few dozen very old, very dusty books scattered in stacks on built-in shelves.  The only other thing present was a single cardboard box.  It was not sealed, but the top flaps where interlaced to keep it closed.

"These look like old texts," Clem said, nodding at the nearest stack of books, "like from when Truman was President.  I'll flag them for the Librarians."

Meanwhile, Gwen had opened the box.  "Oh my!" she gasped.

"What?" Clem asked as she tapped the iPad.

Gwen held up what was unmistakably a straitjacket!

Clem blinked in surprise.  "Oh my, indeed," she agreed.

The jacket was heavy-duty, natural canvas reinforced with tan leather, and was what the average person would classify as a "basic" or "typical" straightjacket.  It closed in the back by means of five leather straps and steel roller-buckles.  Then, the hypothetical wearer's arms would be folded across her chest and the straps at the ends of the leather-reinforced closed sleeves buckled together behind her back.  Finally, the leather crotch-strap dangling from the front would be buckled, also in the back, to prevent her from somehow lifting the closed jacket over her head.

"What does that say?" Clem asked, pointing at the slip of folded paper that had fluttered to the floor when Gwen lifted the jacket.

Gwen stooped and retrieved the note.  "May be worn with or without clothing," she read, then frowned at her roommate.  "Huh?  Written instructions about what clothes to wear?"

Clem nodded at the box.  "There's something else."

The bottom half of the box was occupied by a folded something of black leather with many small, shiny steel buckles, and there was another note.

Clem lifted the note and read.  Her frown returned.

"Well?" Gwen demanded after a few seconds.

Clem focused on her BFF, then her eyes went back to the note.  "Wearer must be completely nude.  For best fit, buckle upper-arm strap behind back after buckling sleeves.  'After' is underlined."  She dropped the canvas straitjacket, then picked up the leather object.  "Double wow!" she gasped.

It was another straitjacket, or more correctly, a bolero straitjacket, a restraining garment with a very high waist, closed sleeves, and a number of dangling straps and rattling buckles at various locations.

Clem smiled as she stared at the garment.  "Your boobs will be totally exposed, and there's no crotch strap.  Catch."

"My boobs?" Gwen gasped as she caught the jacket.

"I'm certainly not gonna let you put me in that thing," Clem chuckled.  "You can't be trusted.  You proved that our last night in the dorm."

"But..."  Gwen was blushing.  The buckles continued rattling as she turned the jacket and examined its gleaming, slightly pebbled finish and the heavy-duty, riveted attachment points of the straps.  "I can't wear this.  Uh, it isn't ours."  She focused on the cardboard box.  "The shipping label says 'Drama Department,' although it seems to be from a publisher, not a kinky fashion house.  I think it's an old box somebody reused.  Anyway, we should take it over there and let them sort it out."

"No," Clem corrected, "we should take it up to the Room of Requirement, and we shouldn't log it in until after we finish the rest of the inventory."


"No buts," Clem decreed.  "Up it goes, and as this completes the floor, we're done for the day."

Gwen was still blushing, but now a ghost of a smile was curling her lips.  "I suppose."  She folded the jackets and both notes, returned them to the box, then closed the flaps and lifted it into her arms.  "Ready," she announced.

They exited the storeroom, locked the door, then strolled towards the main stairway.

Oh, the Humanities!
Chapter 3

"Just 'cause some stupid, anonymous note says I have to be naked," Gwen muttered, "that doesn't mean I have to be naked."  The girls were in the Room of Requirement (a.k.a. ATTIC 3B NORTH, Nicholson Hall) and Gwen was holding the black leather bolero-straitjacket at arms length.  The canvas straitjacket remained neatly folded in the box.

Clem smiled.  "When the gods give you a gift, don't thumb your nose at the written instructions.  Besides, you know you want to."

Gwen favored her friend with a dimpled smirk.  "Yeah, I do.  Catch."  She tossed the jacket to Clem, then unzipped her hoodie.

Clem caught the straitjacket and watched her BFF disrobe.  Soon, Gwen's hoodie, the underlying T-shirt, as well as her jeans, bra, and panties were folded and in a neat stack on the floor next to her sneakers.  The smiling redhead was completely nude, as per the written instructions of "the gods."

Gwen stretched, turned in a slow pirouette, then struck a coy pose and smiled at Clem.  "Ready."

Clem didn't waste any time.  She held the jacket so Gwen could slide her hands and arms into the sleeves.  Once enough of the garment was draped over Gwen's arms and shoulders that it wouldn't fall off, Clem started tugging on the leather of the sleeves, eliminating every crease and fold that she could.

Soon, Gwen's fingertips touched the closed ends of the sleeves and could go no further.  "This thing is tight," she noted.

"It seems to be your size, more or less," Clem shrugged, "but if you think it's tight now..."  She buckled a pair of cuff-like straps around Gwen's wrists, then stepped behind her BFF, zipped the jacket's heavy-duty zipper closed, then started buckling the straps in back.  There were three horizontal straps evenly spaced from just above Gwen's shoulder blades to just above the jacket's lower hem at mid-torso.  A fourth strap secured what was more-or-less a wide, well-padded collar integrated into the jacket.  She secured a much more complicated fifth strap as well.  It was a chest harness and buckled to the collar in front, dangled between Gwen's breasts, then snaked around her upper body (just under her boobs), and was buckled together in back.

"Okay, cross your arms," Clem ordered.  Gwen complied, crossing her leather-sheathed arms under her breasts.  Clem gathered the straps dangling from the ends of the sleeves, threaded the buckle, and pulled out the slack.  "See what I mean?"

"Yes, it's tight, genius," Gwen muttered.  "Hey!"  Clem had tightened the sleeve-ends strap even further and secured the buckle.  She then went over each and every buckle, except for the collar, tightening the straps as far as they would go.  "This is mean," Gwen complained.  Smack!  "Ow!"

Clem had delivered a businesslike slap to Gwen's left butt cheek.  "What part of epic revenge has you confused?" she purred.  She spun her captive around and secured yet another strap.  It was part of the chest harness and tightened around Gwen's crossed, leather-encased forearms.  Clem then released the buckle that secured the chest harness to the collar and tightened it as well.

"Are you quite finished?" Gwen huffed.

"There's still the upper-arm strap," Clem chuckled.  "It's mentioned in the note, remember?"

"Oh," Gwen sighed.  "That's right."

Clem spun Gwen around, again, threaded the upper-arm strap buckle, and tugged it tight.

"Wow!" Gwen gasped.  "You were right, this thing is way tighter."

Clem took two steps back and smiled.  "Give us a nice slow turn," she purred.  "Let's see how you look."

Gwen favored her gloating captor with a withering stare that almost, but not quite, disguised the wicked smile struggling to curl her lips.  Her red hair a tousled mass, tightly strapped in the black leather jacket, and naked from her narrow waist to her bare feet, Gwen slowly shuffled in a slow pirouette, then struck a coy pose, pointing her right foot.  "You'll never get away with this," she said.  "Superman will save me."


Gwen shrugged, or maybe she was giving the straitjacket a halfhearted test.  "Batman?  Spiderman?"  Her eyes popped wide.  "Ooo!  James Bond!"

"Which one?"

"Daniel Craig, of course," Gwen answered.

"Of course," Clem chuckled.  They'd moved Gwen's duffel bags of "hobby supplies" up to the Room of Requirement, the big duffel with the bulk of her rope collection and the small duffel.  Clem reached down, unzipped the side pocket of the small duffel, and pulled out the black rubber and black leather whiffle ball-gag.

"You aren't going to gag me, are you?" Gwen whined, batting her eyes for effect.

"Oh, please," Clem muttered, rolling her eyes.  "That's terrible.  You call yourself an actress?"

"I am an actress," Gwen huffed.  "M'mmpfh!"  The ball was in her mouth and Clem was buckling the strap at the nape of her neck, under her hair.  "Nrrf!"  Her Cruel Kidnapper had tightened the strap until her cheeks bulged, then buckled the chinstrap as well, pulling it extra tight..  She watched as Clem opened the big duffel bag's main compartment and produced one of her longest coils of cotton rope.

A smile on her lips, Clem released the coil, threaded one end through the D-ring in the front of Gwen's straitjacket collar, tied a tight knot, then took a few steps back and tied the other end around one of the attic support posts.  "There, now you have a little room to wander around."  She pointed at the futon cushion on the floor.  "You can roll around and get comfortable."  She nodded towards the stairs.  "But not get away."

Gwen rolled her shoulders and twisted at the waist.  This time it was an overt test of the jacket, a contest Gwen abjectly lost.

"You look so cute like that," Clem sighed.  She gathered Gwen's folded clothes, placed them in the small duffel, zipped it closed, then tossed it next to the large duffel.  Both were well beyond the reach of Gwen's tether, even if she stretched out with one leg.  "Now," Clem said, smiling at her captive.  "I'm going to the Sac for dinner.  When I get back, I'm going to lash your ankles to one of these posts, chair height, and tickle your feet.  Won't that be fun?"

Gwen's green eyes were wide with horror.  "Nrrf!"

"I take it back," Clem chuckled as she walked to the stairs.  "You are an actress."

Gwen watched Clem bounce down the stairs.  She heard the deadbolt turn, the door open and close, and the deadbolt being locked.  She was alone in the Room of Requirement.  Early evening light was still leaking past the closed slats of the attic windows, but the strings of purple icicle lights were glowing overhead.  When night had fully fallen they would be the only illumination.

Is she really gonna tickle me? Gwen wondered (worried).  She was strapped in a cruel jacket, virtually naked, gagged, tethered in place (with considerable slack), and no one knew she was here but her captor!  A shudder rippled through her crotch.  I'm a damsel in distress!  Clem's gonna take her revenge and I'm a real damsel in distress!  Gwen struggled against the jacket, twisting and fighting the tight leather for all she was worth.  Nothing.

Gwen sat on the futon cushion and settled in to wait. The skin of her naked butt felt strange against the cotton fabric. The game is at a new level, she realized.

Oh, the Humanities!
Chapter 3

The Phantom of the Steam Tunnels approached one of the entrances to her domain.  It was a solid steel door at the foot of a set of concrete steps, one of several such nondescript portals scattered around the campus, usually tucked against the base of one of the buildings or a utility structure and screened by landscaping.  The doors led to a veritable maze of narrow, concrete-walled, subterranean passageways linking the University buildings.  They were commonly referred to as "the steam tunnels," even though the last of the campus buildings had been retrofitted with forced-air heat-pumps years ago and the pipes that formerly distributed steam from the central heating plant had been removed, as had the steam plant itself.  The tunnels were now given over to plumbing mains and power and fiber-optic cable conduits.  There was no steam.

The Phantom unlocked the door, eased it open and stepped through, then pulled it closed and turned the lock.  She then paused for several seconds to listen.  The tunnels were only used by campus maintenance personnel to inspect or repair the cable runs, and only on a very infrequent basis.  At least, that was the official story.

On occasion, roving bands of heavily armed and armored students (nerds) wandered the tunnels questing for treasure and battling orcs, goblins, lizard men, huge spiders, giant ants, giant giants, etc.  Either that or they LARPed (Live Action Role Played), whacking on each other with their "fearsome weapons."  The steam tunnels were perfect for such activities—dark, dirty and forbidden—a veritable Mines of Moria (if you ignored the clutter of pipes, the widely spaced electric lights, and the total lack of Dwarvish architectural detail).  However, such incursions were increasingly rare, not that they were ever that common.  The rise of MMORPGs (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games) mirrored a decline in nerd invasions.

That left only—The Phantom of the Steam Tunnels!  Dressed all in black from head to toe, the Phantom had made the claustrophobic, dark, underground labyrinth her own.

It started as simple exploration with a flashlight, a set of old blueprints "borrowed" from the library, and a master key "borrowed" from the Maintenance office.  The key had let her into the tunnels and allowed her to explore, but she found it didn't fit every door in the maze—most, but not all.  Tracking down the missing keys and making the entire network and all its chambers her own had taken time, but now the Phantom knew the maze by heart and had a full set of working keys, masters duplicated on the key grinding machine of her uncle's hardware store in her home town.

The Phantom made her way to her Secret Lair.  As always, she was very careful, treading lightly with her soft sneaker-boots and disturbing the dirt on the floor as little as possible.  And all the while she scanned for footprints made by others.  Above all, she continued to listen.  At least for the moment and in this part of the tunnels, the Phantom was alone—or rather—none disturbed the Phantom's solitude.

Her Lair was actually the subbasement of the former steam plant.  The above-ground structure had been razed, paved over, and made part of a park and mini-quad during a campus expansion.  As they walked the sidewalks on their way to and from class, or relaxed on the concrete benches built into the bases of the various raised planting beds, none of the students even suspected the existence of the dark and supposedly abandoned chambers far below.

Even Maintenance was unaware.  The phantom had hacked their database and altered the records.  As far as the University was concerned, beyond the heavy steel door she was about to unlock was nothing but solid rubble and fill dirt.  The Phantom had even replaced the lock so that now only she had a working key.

The Phantom inserted said key, turned the well-oiled lock, opened the thick steel portal on its well-oiled hinges, and crossed the threshold.  She then eased the door closed behind her and turned the deadbolt, took two steps forward into the total darkness, a motion sensor activated nightlight winked on, and she had sufficient light to insert the key in a second heavy steel door at the end of a short hallway.

Beyond the second door was The Lair Proper.

She'd tried for the classic Phantom of the Opera ambiance, and in her opinion had largely succeeded.  She might not have the vast storerooms of the Opéra de Paris from which to loot decorations, but she had been able to satisfy most of her needs by "borrowing" old props from the University Drama Department.  Local thrift stores had provided the rest.

Now, the depths of the former steam plant were illuminated by various scarf-draped lamps and a damaged crystal chandelier rewired for LED bulbs, as well as dangling strings of LED Christmas lights.  Swaths of fabric served as tapestries and drapes, and a scattering of Victorian chairs and a threadbare couch provided seating.

There was also... The Phantom's Repose, an old king-size mattress and heaps of pillows and bolsters, all covered with satin bedsheets and pillowcases in various deep colors.

And across the Lair was... The Phantom's Laboratory.  A large worktable that separated into small sections (otherwise she wouldn't have been able to get it down here) was laden with racks of old chemistry glassware filled with colored liquids and tastefully lit from below, as well as old desktop computers, some from the 1980s.  The glassware was entirely for show, but she'd repaired and/or rewired most of the computers.  Their flickering screens showed slideshows of weird diagrams of strange devices and lines of scrolling text, adding a retro Sci-Fi element to the Shabby Victorian decor.  There was also a modern laptop on the table, and it was fully functional.

The Phantom settled into a chair at the table, tapped the laptop's keys, and navigated a menu.  The screen flashed to display a slightly grainy view of a dark room with a wooden floor and unfinished walls.  It was clear the camera was positioned up among the room's exposed rafters and was focused on an old futon cushion on the floor.  And reclined on that cushion...

A sinister smile curled the Phantom's lips.  Her carefully prepared trap had snared a pretty, red-haired butterfly.  She stepped to a wheeled rack of clothing, removed its black dust cover, and began changing from her usual black sneaker-boots, black jeans, black top, and black hoodie, and into her actual Phantom costume.

"Tonight is the night," she chuckled to herself.

Oh, the Humanities!
Chapter 3

Gwen squirmed in the tight, inescapable bolero-jacket and moaned softly through her gag.  She'd been trying to take a nap on the futon cushion for the last hour, but was too excited.  Clem's gonna take her revenge!  And there's absolutely nothing I can do to stop her!  Adding titillation to "terror," being completely naked—not counting the spectacularly serendipitous and wonderful find that was the "horrible" jacket—was supremely naughty!

Gwen sighed through her gag.  The situation was absolutely... squiggly.  "Squiggles" was Gwen's private term for the tiny thrills of anticipation that sometimes tickled their way across the nerve endings of some of her favorite body parts.

Suddenly, Gwen heard the sound of the door at the bottom of the steps being unlocked—and the pussy-squiggling shifted into overdrive!

Slow, deliberate footsteps sounded on the wooden steps...  Tap, tap, tap...  And a strange, bizarre figure ascended into view.

Gwen's eyes popped wide.  Clem changed into a kinky costume!  And now things are getting really squiggly!

Her roomie was wearing black leather knee-boots, a skintight, black leather catsuit, black gloves, and a black cloth and leather mask and hood!  The catsuit's various leather panels were laced and buckled tight, compressing the garment to her body.  It reminded Gwen of the outfit Kate Beckinsale had worn—meaning had been poured into—in the last Underworld movie.

When did she buy that thing? Gwen wondered.  And where did she buy it?

And then there was the mask.  Clem's head was completely covered by the cloth hood, and her face hidden behind a full mask sculpted in the visage of a beautiful woman, something very much like a Venetian carnivale mask.

Hips swinging gracefully, her decidedly kinky costume emitting quiet squeaks and squeals as she walked, Clem slowly approached The Prisoner of the Futon.   Tap, tap, tap...  Then, she stood, gloved hands on leather-clad hips, and stared down at Gwen through the beautiful, expressionless (and therefore sinister) mask.

Gwen's heart was pounding.  Clem looked sooooo sexy like that, all dangerous and domineering and in charge!  Her gorgeous blue eyes gazed down at Gwen and—

Gwen froze in genuine terror!  Blue eyes!  And it wasn't a trick of the purple lighting!  And no glasses!  The kinky figure was a stranger!  Whoever this sexy vision in gleaming black leather might be—SHE WASN'T CLEM!


Oh, the Humanities!
Chapter 3

Chapter 2 Chapter 4