The Greenwich Tales
by Freddie Clegg and Phil Lane

The Trainerís Tale

Part 1 : A Conflict of Interest

So this is perhaps the most peculiar client I have had. My name is Katya Izotova and I have been now in England for almost four years. This Daphne has been a real life-saver for me after Nicky ran out but even so, she has been a most peculiar client.

First it was strange how she contacted me. Usually people just call but instead she gets this guy Rick to set up a meeting. Then thereís this strange situation with her and her live in lover; this Branca girl. Still weíve managed to make it work and itís not like I had any other clients.

In fact weíve done better than make it work. Daphne has made real progress. I hadnít thought she could do it but sheís proved really determined. And, I must confess that I had a little fun with her too. She did most of her training from home and maybe I took advantage of that a bit. We played around with some sub-dom chat and Iíve given her a few taps with her riding crop when I thought she was slacking but it was all part of the fun. You canít be a trainer without liking to take the lead in things and that goes for my personal relationships too. Maybe that was some of the problem with Nicky. He liked getting his own way too.

Weíve had a lot of fun with it. I enjoyed training Daphne more than any of the others Iíve worked with -- she was so determined, so driven -- and it made a real difference to her. When we first met she really looked a mess, but the training made a big improvement. And not just to her physical fitness. Before, you couldnít imagine her getting a date with anyone. By the time weíd got three quarters of the way through she was telling me she was having to fend off guys in the office.

It wasnít surprising. She looked fit, her whole body was toned and she seemed to glow with energy. You could imagine anyone fancying her, although sheís a bit on the short side for me. Of the two of them I fancied Branca more; that dark hair and deep eyes reminded me of a Georgian girl Iíd trained with when I first went to the Sports Academy. Iíd had a hopeless crush on her and she didnít know I existed. And since Nicky had gone, Iíd certainly missed someone to snuggle up to in bed at night.

I didnít say anything to Branca. Life was complicated enough and I didnít want to do anything to disrupt Daphneís training. But, after the Marathon, I thought, maybe sheíd like a change of partner.

I wasnít sure of what I was going to do at the end of things. Iíd been thinking about what might happen after the marathon. Daphne really was a great example of what could be done. Maybe I could re-start the training business using her as a reference. Maybe I could persuade her to invest in athletics, using her businesses to sponsor some new training facilities for British athletes. She had been happy enough to raise money for New Start 2012, after all.

I did what I could to keep her on track. I think the SM play really helped. She obviously had a strong kinky streak and while sheís really a top, she enjoyed the theatricality of it all and she seemed to get off on me being the domme for our training sessions at any rate. For me that was fine, it kept her stepping up to the mark in training. I added in a few little ideas of my own like having her wait with her hands on her head, and thwacking her with her crop if she didnít keep up with her technique.†

We had some other fun too. Iíve always liked piercings but Daphne just had her ears pierced once. I told her she was going to get a new piercing each time she reached a milestone in her running. One more when she did her first five mile run, one more at ten miles, one more at fifteen miles. I liked the way she looked with her hair cropped short and three rings in each ear. I think she found it quite sexy. She had the same thing done to Branca. I liked that. Iíd have had few more done to her too.

Part 2 : Disappearance:

OK, this isnít funny any more. Iíd thought that the whole Daphne / Branca thing was a bit weird although Iím up for a bit of kinky fun anyway, like I said. Sure weíve been playing around with those toys from under Daphneís bed. But today I found out that things were stranger than I liked to believe.

Daphne had been at the gym for her morning work-out and IĎd agreed to meet up with her for her weekly check up on weight, body fat measurement, heart rate, blood pressure, BMI and the rest. She was deep in her afternoon work session; the usual round of emails, telephone calls, video conference meetings and research work. Branca was clearing up after lunch. She often liked to chat when I got to the house. I was happy to spend a bit of time with her too. She seemed to never go out on her own. Up until then I hadnít realised why.

"You have been very good for her, you know," Branca said as she scraped the left over food from Daphneís plate (something Iíd never thought I would see!) into the kitchen waste.

"Sheís doing all the work," I said. It was true. Daphne had really put her heart into it. All I had done was to provide the framework.

"Well maybe, but youíve kept her at it. And itís made a big difference to me. You know before when she was so fat and, well so, you know? Itís much easier being with her now that she is happy with herself."

I said I was pleased it had made a difference. All the time I was thinking that Iíd be happier if she was with me and not Daphne. It was then that Daphne bounced (yes, bounced! Who would have thought that a few months back?) into the kitchen.

"Are you ready for this check up then, coach?" she said, smiling.

"Absolutely," I replied, pulling myself back to the job in hand. "Get yourself off to the gym."

"Yes, Maíam!" Daphne replied. Ever since weíd started using the hood and wrist cuffs in the early stages of her training, sheíd kept up a sado-masochistic banter that was playful but, at the same time, almost serious.

"And assume the position!"

Daphne grinned and trotted off. "You see," Branca said. "Happy with herself."

When I got to the room we were using as a gym, Daphne was there, standing on the scales waiting for me, with her hands on her head. Teasing as ever, she had stripped down to her bra and pants. "I thought youíd want to check for muscle tone," she said, flirtatiously.

"All right, Challis," I said using the rather formal tone that seemed to work well for keeping her motivated. "Let me check your skin fold thickness." In the early days of training, measuring weight to calculate body mass index OK but as a person becomes fitter they lose fat but build up muscle. The problem is that muscle weighs more than fat, so you canít rely on weight measurement alone. Skinfold thickness measurement is best -- but the client has to be undressed to do that!!

Daphne looked down as I checked her skinfold thickness, pinching gently at folds of skin in a number of places. The first time I did this she thought the callipers you use to do this looked pretty scary; now she was used to them. I did her resting heart rate and blood pressure, noting the results on her fitness record.

She had made enormous strides and I told her so. "Daphne, Iím so pleased. If you had asked me at the start of this if I thought you would get this far I would never have believed it. But youíve kept to the diet and the training plan and you are well on track. When it comes to the marathon, I really think you will finish it, if you keep things going as we have said."

"Thank you, Maíam!" Daphne smiled.

"Seriously," I said. "It must have made an enormous difference to you. Itís changed things for Branca, you know?"

A cloud seemed to cross Daphneís face. "What did she say?"

"Only that she was happy at the changes sheíd seen. Whatís the problem?"

"Nothing," said Daphne. "Nothing at all."

I forgot about it. We went out for a run together. I had chosen to follow a hilly eight mile circuit to give Daphne some periods of quite hard work. She wasnít fast but she could manage a steady pace. We got back after about ninety minutes †Sure she was tired but when I thought back to the huffing and puffing there had been when on her first walk this was a real achievement.

Daphne went off to have her shower and, a little bit later, she left for a late afternoon meeting at her office. Branca was picking up Daphneís discarded running kit. I thought Iíd tackle her about Daphneís worries. It was not good for Daphne to be fretting over things; not when she was doing so well.† Not with the race coming towards us.††

I asked Branca what was the matter with Daphne. "She seems edgy," I said, "not concentrating."

"I think," Branca said with her usual candidness, "that she is worrying about you and me."

"Why?"

"I think she believes you find me desirable. She worries that you might want me."

I decided that honesty was the best approach. I reached out to her. "Branca, weíve all been very close. Iíve been lonely after Nicky went. Youíre an attractive woman. You remind me a lot of a woman I once loved, or thought I loved. Who knows what might happen?" Branca seemed surprised by the expression of affection.

"It cannot be like that, you see. I am for Daphne."

"But thatís silly," I said. "I mean you two are a great team but itís not like she owns you, anyway."

Branca looked blank.

"I said, she doesnít own you."

"Yes, she does." Brancaís response was blunt.

"Oh, I know you and Daphne play those SM games."

"Games? Itís no game," she replied, as though it was the most natural thing in the world. "Not for Daphne, not for me. She bought me, paid for me to be brought here. Paid for me to be trained as hers. You and she, youíre the team. Iím not part of any team. My room -- why do you think it has a lock? Why do you think it cannot be unlocked from inside? Look - see my collar. She had this put on me. It cannot be taken off. See."† She slid it around her neck. I knew she always wore it but I hadnít realised that there was no way it could be removed. It seemed way too extreme.† She saw my horrified look. "Oh, Iím sorry. I didnít mean to frighten you. Look itís all right. I do this because I want to. I have to be like this. I have to do my best for Connie."

"Why do you say that?"

"What?"

"Do your best for Connie."

Branca looked blank. "Do I say that? I donít know. Maybe it was my training. You see I did training like Daphne does training. Like you do training. Look, donít be upset."

It was all too strange for me. I thought back to my grandfather, Dedushka Izotov, who used to say, slowly shaking the stem of his pipe towards me: "those Westerners: there is no limit to their decadence!" Sexual games are one thing but real life, live-in slaves? Thatís something else. Perhaps he had been right all along...

And then Branca said, "Please donít be upset. You just donít understand what itís like. Donít worry we can help you understand. You can get to see what itís like."

I didnít want to see what it was like. There was no way I wanted to be involved in Daphne and Brancaís strange household any more. I thought that Branca meant Daphne planned to take me as some sort of slave. Suddenly I just wanted to put as great a distance between me and Daphne and Branca as I could.

I went off to the basement to pick up my stuff from the training room. I was bending over my sports grip when Branca crept up behind me and pulled some sort of leather bag over my head. I was taken completely off guard and as I struggled to get the bag off, Branca grabbed my wrist and snapped a handcuff on, pulling my arm down and locking the other cuff through my belt. I am much stronger and fitter than Branca, but she had taken me by surprise and she seemed to be fighting with strength born of desperation. We both rolled to the ground. Unable to see, I was at serious disadvantage. I tried to cry out but the noise I made was muffled by the bag, Branca cuffed my other hand to my belt in the same way. Finally I felt Branca catch my ankle and fasten it to the weights rack and like it or not I was her prisoner. There was not much I could do about anything. She pulled off the bag and jammed something into my mouth. I guessed it was the red ball gag that Iíd seen in the toy box. I couldnít cry out and the more I tried to struggle, the more I realised that the cuffs were locked immovably about my wrists and I couldnít free my ankle from whatever was holding me.

Branca left me there. Some time later I heard Daphneís voice saying, "Oh, my. Oh, Branca! Why did you do this?"

"She was going to go," she said. "She found out about me being your slave. She was going to go. I couldnít let her."

"But why, Branca? We would have sorted things out."

"No. She was going to go. You wouldnít have your training. Wouldnít have your run. Maybe youíd go back to being the old Daphne. Maybe you would be mad at me. Maybe you would send me away, sell me to someone else. She didnít want to be your new slave. She would tell police, Iím sure. That cannot happen you know; not if I do my best for Connie."

I tried to cry out but whatever was filling my mouth cut the sound to a moan.

"Oh, Branca," I heard Daphne say. "Iím sure you did your best. Donít worry. Iím not going to sell you but the question is still what do we do about Miss Izotova now?"

"I can undo the straps," said Branca. "If I did wrong."

"No," I heard Daphne say, "that wonít do. Maybe she was going to go. I canít let that happen. I canít lose what sheís done for me."† I felt her crouch down beside me. Her hand was stroking my head. "Iím sorry, Katya, I canít let you go. You mean too much to me. The running. How I look. How I feel. And everything else. I canít let you go."

Then there was Brancaís voice again. "I brought the phone, Madam," she said. "You should call Larry. He will know what to do."

I overheard Daphneís end of the conversation. "Larry, itís Daphne. I need some help. Itís about the Russian goods that you suggested I hire. I need to convert the rental to a purchase.† Yes, I realise what that will involve. Yes I know. Well, it will have to be done quickly. The rest of my training and for the race. Yes I know you need more time to do a complete preparation job. It doesnít need to be too thorough for now. Just so I can finish training and do the run. After that we can do a proper job. Larry, please. Get the team to do what they can. Yes you can collect from here. Iíll explain what happened later."

Daphne stayed with me, waiting for her friends to arrive. I felt like a child waiting with their parents to be taken away to hospital, except I am raging, struggling, tired and frightened. Just what does Daphne think she is playing at? †How dare she do this to me? Then I think about Branca. Iím going to be like Branca? Daphne thinks people are just things to be collected and disposed of. I felt terrified. What did they do to you, these friends of Daphne? How did you get to be like Branca? Then there were other voices.† There was a man and a woman.† Eva, she said she was, pushed up my sleeve and held what looked like a fat marker pen against my arm while the man held me steady. There was a sharp prick and a feeling of pressure and then I began not to care anymore what was happening.† I began to feel very tired and heavy. It was so much easier just to do as I was asked. To keep still. To let them help me up. To go with them out of the house. I took a last look at Daphne and Branca: It was like looking at a painting in a gallery: I saw two frightened little girls cuddling each other for protection.