Market Forces
Part 7
by Freddie Clegg

© Freddie Clegg 2007. No posting or reproduction without permission.

Chapter 44: Stimulation

I’d taken on board what Harry was saying but I really hadn’t decided what to do about it. If what Harry had to say hadn’t been enough, the earful I got from Freddie the following day made the point even more strongly. He asked to see me in his office. When I got there Elly had evidently just finished a conversation with him. He didn’t look happy. Elly just looked at me, dropped a file on Clegg’s desk and said “See you later,” to him She gave a nod to me but said nothing more and left.

Clegg gestured for me to take a seat. “How’s things with the Emir?” he asked.

“OK,” I said. "Harry’s got research to do on some collection proposals. The Emir’s happy with them. He’s going to take 14 pieces from us. Some will come from stock but most will be custom collections.” I’d expected him to be pleased with the news but it didn’t look like he was.

“Larry,” he said, “That’s fine. Good news.” He moved quickly on, evidently keen to get to what he really wanted to talk about. “Look, I know operations aren’t your responsibility but I’m worried. There’s been too many cock-ups recently in the field and in the Prep Centre. And then there was the business with Brian. The difficulty with all this custom collection work is that it means we’re being more selective about targets. I’m not sure we’re taking account of the extra risks you get when you go after someone specific rather than just collecting opportunities. It was your idea to go down this track. The business needs to deal with the consequences but you need to get on board with that too. I got Elly to do some rooting around on some of the problems. She’s just been filling me in. The only good thing is that it looks as though the Brian thing was well contained. Seems like he wasn’t just keeping down sales prices, he was skimming the receipts as well. The people who thought he was helping them are most upset. They actually sounded grateful that we’d taken him out. Sure, they like to make a bit of money but they don’t like things be de-stabilised any more than I do. Not sure where that leaves him when I’ve done with him though. Nobody’s even interested in him as meat. As to the rest of it, Elly was pretty scathing. The whole team’s got too bloody casual. It needs to be tightened up. If we carry on like we are doing then someone’s going to get killed or worse.”

“Well, hang on,” I said defensively. “I’m not sure that you can point deficiencies in operations or the prep centre at me. I know Brian was pissed off because of what I’d been doing but that’s hardly my fault is it?”

“No,” said Clegg, “it’s not. But, and it’s a big but, if this organisation as a whole can’t cope with the attentions of that incompetent better than we did then we’re in trouble. If one of our own folk gets snatched by amateurs; if one of our own folk lets herself get snatched by amateurs; if we only avoid you getting picked up by chance; if we let your writer run amok and break out of the Prep Centre; if we have our sales director running scams on the inside of the business and no one knows; if the Prep centre is so heavy handed it gets to blister the mind of one of our assets,” I looked blank, “your bloody writer – Rachel; then I think the business has a problem. And if you don’t think that’s part of your responsibility then maybe I have a problem with you.”

“Hey, I’m not backing away from any of this but I can’t do other people’s jobs. You didn’t hire me because of what I knew about this business, remember?”

“No, I didn’t. But I do expect some level of involvement. And I need to see some follow through on the consequences of getting into this approach to market. Now I’ll admit I haven’t pressed you on this. But I’m pressing you now Larry, I’m pressing you now. And you won’t want me to press you any harder. Believe me.”

Something about his humourless smile made me very certain that I agreed with him.

“The first thing we’re going to do is fix your writer,” he said bluntly. “I don’t like wasting assets. You wanted her, you can take the lead.”

“Well, I ‘m not sure we can, I’ve spoken to Rick and ….” Clegg’s cold stare cut me off.

“I said it’s going to be fixed. I’ve spoken to Rick about a few things too, including this and he’s feeling much more motivated now.” I imagined the conversation had been along similar lines. “He’s made some progress. Got a new approach. Looks as though it might work, Go talk to him again. And then come back and tell me how you’re going to fix it. That’s not ‘if’, Larry, that’s ‘how’! Don’t take it personally. I’m going to be pretty intolerant of cock-ups all round from now, but this one is very much on your priority list. I’m interested in your continued well-being Larry. Don’t disappoint me.”

I left Clegg’s office feeling somewhere between deeply uncomfortable and scared shitless. Whether or not it was personal it was pretty clear that any failure would result in some personal attention and I didn’t think it was about to be a quiet coaching session. In fairness, I had to admit he was right but it didn’t make me any more comfortable about the possible outcomes.

I bumped into Rick in the corridor at the Prep Centre and told him Freddie had asked me to talk to him about Rachel. “Yes,” he said, “Freddie had a chat with me, too.” He gave a look that suggested he’d left his discussions with Clegg in about as comfortable a state as I had. “So, it looks like we need to try and fix this.”

I asked whether he’d made any progress with Rachel, whether he’d found anything yet that might be able to help her.

“No,” he said. “We stopped the drugs and we’ve put her on a fairly minimal security regime while we’ve been trying to think of some other stuff. The good news is that she seems to be recovering. No more compliant than before but certainly less damaged than I thought. There could be something there to work with after all but we need a different approach.”

“What sort of ‘different approach’, more drugs or what?”

“Nuh,” Rick shook his head. “There’s one idea that one of the team came up with. We were working on it before Elly got Clegg all wound up about things. They thought that maybe instead of trying to break her we should just give her a really comfortable environment, let her recover as best she could, and then, well…. Look have you got some time?”

I looked at my watch. “Mm, sure,” I said. “I want things to turn out for her. I am responsible, I guess. I had her snatched after all. It’s not her fault things moved on. Plus Freddie wants some feed-back on what we’re going to do. He’s taking a personal interest. I can see it wouldn’t be a great idea to disappoint him.”

“Yeah, I know. The good thing is that it was what Freddie has set up for Brian’s family that gave us the idea for this. You know he was really angry about all that. I wondered if there wasn’t going to be blood spilled in a deliberate, unpleasant and terminal fashion over it.”

“You’re not telling me that he’s mellowed? Decided to send them all off for a pleasant holiday somewhere with his compliments?”

“That’s not really Freddie, is it? Look at what he asked us to set up for the wife, the sister and the two girls. Here.” Rick pulled back a curtain that had covered a viewing panel. Behind it were four tables, each of which had one of Brian’s family strapped down to it. They weren’t struggling. Alice was nearest, then Carol and then the two girls Beth and Ella. All four were naked and as far as I could tell as hairless as when I had last seen them. Wires ran from an overhead gantry to each woman’s nipples, labia and clitoris. From the way that each was bucking and twitching in turn it was evident that they were being stimulated electrically. Every so often one or the other would give a sigh, a low moan or a short grunt. I assumed it had been going on for some time. “The wires provide low frequency stimulation directly to their arousal centres. There’s a sort of randomiser so they’ll be stimulated in left or right nipple, clitoris, anus in different sequences one after another. They are sedated but they are already showing signs of distress when we turn the current off. I think it should be soon time to move them on to the next stage.”

“Something more intense? Hang on. Did you say they’re distressed when you turn the current off?”

“Oh yes. They are becoming addicted to the stimulation. So the next stage isn’t really to make it any more intense. Quite the reverse in some ways. What we do next is to provide them with a highly normalised environment. Comfortable surroundings, bright colours, good food, opportunities for relaxation. Except they get to learn that they can have intense sexual stimulation whenever they want it. We’ve designed a device that fits like a thong, a radio receiver triggers it. Using that, we can let them learn that they can gain stimulation with conforming behaviour. They can try self stimulation of course but they’ll find that it’s not as intense as what we can deliver through the thong. Pleasure is very addictive.”

“But I’m not sure I see how this helps us with Rachel. I don’t even really see what the end point for them is. How does this help Freddie’s need for revenge on Brian?”

“Well, can’t we use the same approach on Rachel? The end point for this lot is that Clegg gets four females, completely addicted to sex that will do almost anything for the sexual stimulation that they crave. I am sure he can find a use for that.” Rick gave a smirk.

“And Freddie’s revenge?”

Rick pressed another button and a light lit at the back of the room. There, strapped to a chair, fully able to watch every aspect of the proceedings, was Brian. “He’s watching every last part of it,” said Rick. “Freddie’s really quite pleased that he’s going to be able to watch his wife, sister-in-law and daughters turning tricks because they want to.”

“Sounds like something the Emperor Tiberius would have thought of.”

“Funny you should say that,” Rick came back. “Freddie’s got a copy of Suetonius' ‘The Twelve Caesars’ on his desk at the moment.”

“I think we should all be worried by that. From what I remember it didn’t turn out too well for any of them or many of the people around them.”

“No,” said Rick, "I’m no classicist but I think you’re right. Still, to come back to the point in hand, I thought we could use something similar for your writer. Do you want me to put her on the same regime?”

“Let me think about it,” I said. It seemed like it might offer some possibilities but I was worried. I suspected that Rachel’s almost catatonic state had been the result of trauma from her use of the memory of rape as the diversion from her conditioning added to the effect of the drugs. I wasn’t sure that more sex was the answer. Leastways not at first.

Chapter 45: The Emir’s Photo Collection

“Yes, that’s right, Janice, it’s for a photo shoot. …. Well, I saw the stuff you do on your web site and I thought you’d be ideal for this. I’ll cover your fees of course but I’ll credit your work on the pictures too. They’ve been commissioned by a new magazine: South Coast – it’s going to be promoting all sorts of businesses around here, this shoot is for their launch issue. It should get a lot of attention. Anyway they want us to do a feature on a couple of volley ball players, we’re going to want to do a sort of make over shoot, some pics of them in their volley ball kit and then in evening dress. So you’ll need to do a fairly high-energy make up and hair for the first shots and something a bit more sophisticated for the evening look. I guess you and Jilly can handle that? …. I thought so. OK well if you can be at my studio tomorrow lunchtime, that will be great. Keep it quiet though, the magazine doesn’t want anything to get out about this until they do the launch. If it goes well you should have plenty more opportunities like this. … Right, see you there.”

I overheard Tricia’s phone call. It sounded like she had no problem setting up Janice and Jillie, the make up girls. Karen and Peta weren’t any trouble either when Tricia called them. They were keen for some publicity as they saw it and, like she said, the worst that can happen is you don’t like what the make up girls do.

The next day in the photo studio we’d hired for the occasion, Janice and Jillie were setting up their stuff on a couple of tables to one side when I saw Karen and Peta coming up the alleyway towards us. They squeezed past the van that almost blocked the alleyway and onto the stairs that led up to where we were.

We were using Tricia and Eva, the girl she’d worked with on the Questor pick up, for this. We thought the targets would be more comfortable with a couple of female photographers. I was there ostensibly to rig lighting. I just liked to watch the girls at work I guess. Tricia and Eva seemed to get on and it looked like everything was working so far. Tricia was keen to get a lead role but she didn’t mind working for Eva and Harry had been adamant that she needed a few more pick-ups under her belt before he’d let her take charge of one. She and Harry had had a bit of an up and downer about it. I was trying to stay out of it. At least it didn’t seem to be interfering with this job.

The six of them were enjoying a glass of chilled wine before getting started while I fiddled around with the flash stands and the reflectors. Karen and Peta stripped down to their bra and panties to let Janice and Jillie get started on their make up and hair. There were some robes hanging by the chairs at the make up desk but they didn’t bother with them.

Janice was just about to start on Peta’s hair when Tricia and her friend went to work. The targets found themselves staring into the barrel of an Ouzi and a pistol. “Sorry, ladies,” Tricia announced. “Just be careful or it will be a different type of shoot to the one you expected. Now keep your hands over your heads and sit down on the floor.”

Janice, Jillie, Karen and Peta followed instructions, staring up from the floor at their attackers.

“Karen, Peta, on your face, please, hands behind your backs.” Tricia passed two pairs of handcuffs to Janice and Jillie. “Put those on them,” she ordered watching as Janice and Jillie cuffed the two volley ball players, “and squeeze them closed real tight. Tricia’s associate was rummaging in Karen and Peta’s sports bags, she pulled out four pairs of sports socks.

“One pair each, ladies,” she said tossing them to Janice and Jillie. Seeing their puzzled look she pointed to her own mouth. “In the mouth, girls, in the mouth. We want you four quiet. You two roll the others over and stuff their mouths. Then do your own.”

“No, please,” begged Janice. “We won’t make a sound. We’ll be quiet.”

“Will we, fuck,” growled Karen.

Tricia grinned. “That’s what we thought,” she snarled. “Now get on with it.” She aimed a swipe of her gun butt at Janice who fell into line quickly. Cramming a pair of socks into Peta’s mouth before doing the same for her own. She looked back plaintively at Tricia. Jillie did the same for Karen. “Now some tape,” said Eva, tossing a roll of gaffer tape across to Janice. Jillie knelt on the floor with her hands in the air, staring in fear at Tricia’s gun. “Three strips - two diagonal cross ways over the mouth, one horizontal, use plenty and make sure it’s pulled tight over those socks.” Eva ordered Janice, watching as she did as she was told. “Great, you’ve done that really well. Now do your own.”

As Janice pulled the strips tight across her own face she gave a muffled grunt. “Grunghhh,” she went.

Eva smiled. “Yeah, it works doesn’t it? Now do the other two.” Janice taped over Peta’s mouth and then did the same for Jillie before dropping the remainder of the roll on the floor. She looked up at Tricia and Eva and raised her own hands in resigned surrender.

“Very good,” said Eva. “Now let’s get you two tied up.”

“Hang on,” I said, interrupting things for the first time. “Let’s have these two strip off. They’re looking a bit over dressed alongside our sporty two.” Tricia and Eva exchanged a look that said, “Men! Huh!” but they knew as well as I did that the more you did to humiliate them early on in the game, the easier they were to deal with as things went on.

“You heard the man,” said Eva. “Stay down on the floor but get out of those dresses.” Janice gave a muffled whimper. Eva responded by jamming her pistol into the girl’s cleavage. "Get started if you don’t want an extra button hole,” she snarled and Janice began to unfasten the buttons up the front of her dress. As she pulled it from her shoulders, I got a good look at her tits, she tried to hold her hands across her chest but Eva wasn’t having any, ordering her to put her hands behind her. The gag muffled Janice’s sobs but the tears on her cheek told the story of her distress and terror. Jillie offered no resistance as Tricia prodded her into stripping like her friend. She gave each of the make-up girls a pair of handcuffs and told them to lock their own wrists behind their backs before she pushed them face down alongside Peta and Karen. We let the four of them whimper helplessly while we cleared the place up.

It didn’t take long to get the girls down the stairs and into the van; the alleyway wasn’t overlooked so we didn’t even have to wait until dark. They were soon on their way. I suggested to Tricia that she and I might go for a drink but she turned me down. She claimed that she and Eva still had another pick up to plan but I thought it might have had something to do with me insisting that Janice and Jillie strip off.

Later it looked like I needn’t have worried. I was laying in bed in my hotel room, later that evening, flicking idly though the channels on the TV when there was a knock at the door. “It’s me,” said Tricia’s voice. “I thought we might have that drink……” I’d hoped we might have some fun or maybe even talk through some of my problems. Instead Tricia spent the time telling me that Harry really ought to let her lead a pick up and she didn’t see why she had to go on playing second string to Eva. I sat there listening or looking as though I was, and thinking that an evening with Kelly would have been more amusing. In the end she went back to her own room.

I spent the rest of the time thinking about what I was going to suggest to Clegg about Rachel. I’d had a long talk with the Prep Centre doctor – the one that had helped me the time that Rachel attacked me. She had agreed with me that the whole sex orientation thing was unlikely to work in the short term after the traumatising effect of Rachel’s multiple rapes. She argued that what Rachel needed was a chance to draw a line under that, to set herself free from her past, to start again. In the longer term, having done that it would be possible to use Rick’s approach but she was too unstable now. The Doc argued that one of the ways forward could be to induce some sort of near-death experience; to give her something to recover from and then to help that recovery. That way she would come to see us as her saviours rather than her oppressors; at least as long as she didn’t suspect that we were the authors of her fate. The fact that she’d been on a less oppressive regime already would help. After that we could probably introduce the sexual programming.

I’d felt the Doc was making sense. It sounded like a better bet than trying to shock her into sexual compliance from where she was now. I had the ideal nurse available in Sukie, and from what I’d seen Rachel trusted her. The Doc knew how to engineer the near death experience. We just had to organise it and make sure no one else knew about it.

The discussion with Clegg turned out to be a lot less difficult than I’d expected. But then I’d thought a lot about it.

“You wanted me to tell you how I was going to fix the Rachel problem,” I said, taking as positive an approach as I could.

“Uhhuh,” said Clegg.

“Well, I’ve got the answer. It depends on inducing an immediate crisis for Rachel and assisting her recovery.” I talked him through the Doctor’s hypothesis that Rachel would respond to the opportunity to draw a line under her past life and start again. I didn’t explain how we were going to achieve that and he didn’t press me. “After the induced crisis she’ll need an extended time in recovery. I’ll want a minimum security suite. I’ll be living in it myself – I want to keep this very close to me and I don’t think I can do it in my flat. And I want Sukie assigned to the project as well. I’ll need some help from the Doc too.”

Clegg looked thoughtful. “How long is extended?”

“It could be six months. It could be less.”

“We’re not talking ‘horse might talk’ here are we?”

“Sorry,” I said. “How do you mean?”

“It’s a parable on the value of delaying tactics.” Clegg was watching me closely. I looked him straight in the eye. “A man is about to be executed by the King and he says, ‘Surely you wouldn’t execute the man who could make your horse talk? Give me a year and I’ll do it.’ The King agrees and as the man is dragged off to the stables, one of the guards hisses at him, ‘You can’t make his horse talk, can you?’ And the man says, ‘In a year a lot can happen. I might die, or the horse might die, or the King might die, … or the horse might talk.’ You see Larry? I’d hate to think you were thinking along those lines, Larry.”

“Freddie,” I said, “I don’t have any other horses to back on this one.” Clegg laughed. “I thought about using the techniques that are being worked on Brian’s family but that’s not right for this. At least not at first. This is the best bet.”

“Good,” he said. “At least you’re committed. What shall we call this project? ‘Mr. Ed’?”

Chapter 46: Dutch Collection

I couldn’t really justify the time to sit in on another collection. I had Rachel to worry about and I really needed to finish off the plans for putting in place a proper account management function now that Brian was no longer around. Tricia and Eva seemed quite able to get on with it, anyway. After all it was their job.

I did take some time out to see how things were progressing with Brian’s family though. Rick took me into one wing of the Prep Centre where from the viewing corridor we were looking into not harsh prison cells but a comfortable living area that looked like a small apartment. There were bright colours, comfortable furniture, books on the table, CD’s and a stereo. Ella, her mother and her aunt were al lounging in chairs around the room. They all wore similar smock-like dresses that hung from their collars, flowing loosely and stopping well above their knees. The dresses were in bright, pastel colours, pink for Ella, pale yellow for Alice, pale blue for Carol. The women were all smiling but didn’t appear to be doing anything. “It’s every bit as secure as the other rooms,” said Rick, “but the occupants have complete freedom inside their area. Here, here comes Beth now.”

A door opened on the far side and Beth appeared. She looked happy, tanned, and relaxed. She’d obviously just come from the shower. She had one towel wrapped tightly around her body and another around her head. She shook the second towel loose and sat on a chair, rubbing at her hair with the towel. I could see that she was still wearing her collar but apart from that there was no sign of any restraints.

She dropped the other towel, leaving her almost naked. All she wore was the briefest of thongs, simple, white, and barely covering her at all.

“This is all very pleasant, Rick,” I said, “but I’m not sure what’s going on.”

Rick, taking his usual irritating pleasure in holding out for the least bit of dramatic effect, pulled a small control box from his pocket with a flourish. “This,” he said, “provides a radio signal to a tiny receiver that is held in Beth’s vulva by that thong. It can pulse on demand or deliver low frequency stimulation to the girl’s clitoris. It’s possible to induce and maintain high levels of sexual arousal. Watch.” He pressed a button.

At once, Beth stopped what she was doing turned towards the panel we were standing behind and said in a clear voice. “Oh, yes, please. I want you to.” Rick pressed another button and Beth soon appeared to be highly aroused, laying down on the couch, stroking her own body, clutching at her groin, panting and keening with desire. Rick let the effect continue for a while, until he pressed the button again and almost at once, Beth’s arousal could be seen to diminish. She sat up catching her breath, staring wistfully towards the screen. “Thank you,” she said. “More?” She looked at the panel for a few moments but could see that nothing further was coming. With a disappointed look she sank back down on the couch and picked up a magazine. As she was leafing through it I could see it was one set or pornographic pictures after another. She seemed to study some of the pictures intently. She had completely forgotten that, apart from the thong, she was naked.

“Well,” I said, “I think I understand what I saw but I’m not sure what it means. Why doesn’t she just take that thong off?”

“Why should she want to? Then she wouldn’t get what she wants most of all; sexual stimulation. It delivers frequent bouts of stimulation at irregular intervals, keeping her in a slightly aroused state. From that point any further stimulus creates a state of rapid arousal. If we brought one of the guards in for instance, she would be desperate for sexual activity to raise herself up from the background level of arousal delivered by the thong.”

“And how do you stop them all just going at each other? If they can get each others stimulation don’t they lose the need for the thong?”

“Unapproved sexual activity is non-conformant behaviour. We turn off their thong. The choice is between low level but regular, almost continuous arousal coupled with satisfaction when approved or occasional satisfaction but without the background of arousal. So far they’ve all chosen the former.”

I had to admit it looked promising but I still thought that carrying on with my current plans looked like the better start for Rachel. Rick’s methods could, however, have us offering a much better service to those who were looking to acquire slaves as sexual playthings. “How come you hadn’t developed this before?” I asked.

“We didn’t have the problem before, really. Don’t forget when we’ve been collecting for stock we haven’t had to worry about the results of training. As long as the girls were saleable for something then we weren’t too worried what the outcome of orientation was. If they were damaged by the process it just meant that they fetched a lower price. Actually, thinking about it, that might have been some of Brian’s problem. There had been a few cases of ‘difficult’ girls over the last year.”

“Well it sounds like you needed to rethink the orientation approach anyway.”

Rick nodded, thoughtfully. “Yeah,” he said, “that’s pretty much what Freddie said. But not quite in those words.”

I was still working at the Prep Centre later when Eva and Tricia came in, pleased as anything and giggling like girls. “We’ve come up with a new Clegg Enterprises product,” Eva announced as she came into my office. “You’ll never guess what it is.”

“You’re right,” I said. I’ve never been much good at guessing games. “Does it involve your Dutch project?”

“Oh yes,” said Tricia. “Absolutely!”

“And this wonderful idea is?” I asked.

“Tinned slaves!” Tricia and Eva blurted out together, collapsing on the office couch with a peal of laughter.

Harry, disturbed by the noise, came to see what was going on.

“Come and see,” said Eva and led the way out to the delivery bay. There was one of the standard Clegg white vans. Behind, it was towing a caravan. “There” said Eva, pointing to the caravan, “two tinned slaves. Probably well stewed in their own juice by now.”

Harry and I walked across to the van and climbed inside. The muffled grunts of two gagged women told us that Eva and Tricia had been successful. Eva climbed in behind us and lifted up the cushions of the bench seat that ran across the caravan’s large front window. In the base of the seat, wedged in between piles of clothes and boxes was a bikini-clad, bound and gagged girl. She looked panic stricken, her eyes wide in terror, evidently attempting to scream behind her gag. “Greetje Van Bruijn,” Eva announced, “who was so friendly as to invite Tricia into her caravan for a cup of tea. Unfortunately Tricia popped a little something in her cup and she ended up in there. All we had to do then was to wait for Femke to get back from the hospital.” “And she is where?” Harry asked.

Eva and Tricia were enjoying the theatrics. “Ta – da!” Tricia said as she pulled open the door of the caravan’s bath cabinet. Sat inside on the chemical closet was Femke Toos, the Dutch nurse. Still wearing her white uniform dress she’d been trussed up with strips of cloth, torn I guessed from clothes found in the caravan. Her mouth was well stuffed with a cloth gag. She’d lost her cap in her struggles and it lay on the floor near her feet, but that was all she had managed to dislodge. I reached forward and pulled off the identity badge that she wore pinned to her dress, “Ward Nurse : F Toos,” it said. Well, she was going to be working in some different wards from now on.

“It was soooo easy,” Tricia crowed. “Snatched her when she got back to the ‘van. Stuffed her in there. Eva hitched the caravan up to our truck and we were off the site and on our way in 15 minutes. How easy was that? Nobody was bothered, caravans come and go all the time.”

Tricia grabbed hold of Greetje and pulled her from beneath the couch. Eva untied the cloth strips from Femke’s ankles and got her to her feet. The two captives were led away to be introduced to Rick's team and their new, albeit temporary, accommodation.

Freddie was up at the Prep Centre for one of his occasional visits. I guessed he’d been giving folk a little “encouragement” and getting his ear closer to the ground than had been the case for a while. He called me up to asked me for an update on the current projects. I assumed he’d want to hear about Rachel too.

I found him in one of the offices, evidently talking on the phone to Elly. “Yes, that should be fine,” he was saying. “You know I trust your call on the legal stuff. No, I’m not worried about any of the clauses they’ve added to the contract except for the suggested warranties. We can’t warrant the stock for anything more than its current status. I’m certainly not getting into ‘freedom from disease or any significant medical condition that might prevent the goods from providing the specified services or might reduce the value of the goods on re-sale’. That’s a mine-field. I’ll happily agree to confirming that no medical condition has arisen during the period of acquisition, preparation and orientation, but we can’t be responsible for pre-existing medical conditions. Jeeze, they’ll be wanting me to send Harry out with an MRI scanner.” He waved me to a seat. “And I don’t want a buy back clause either or if we have one then it’s got to be ‘current market prices’ not ‘purchaser’s acquisition price’. I don’t care if they’re complaining that they don’t know what the market will do; neither do I. … That OK? …. Fine. …..You’re a star. …. Talk to you soon.” He put the phone down.

“Hi, Freddie,” I said. “Contract problems?”

“No, not really. Nothing out of the unusual. Some of the buyers are always trying it on. The bigger ones are starting to get purchasing managers in their organisation for crying out loud. They don’t think they’ve added any value if they haven’t changed at least one clause in the contract. Elly will sort it out. It’s just noise, really.”

“Maybe they don’t understand the process,” I said. "Perhaps we should give them some hospitality to help them see what a great product we provide. We could do it somewhere nice and comfortable – use the Emir’s castle maybe – let them have the experience their companies are buying into. They probably don’t get much in the way of perks. We could do it as a training exercise for them – giving them insights into the problems of slave keeping so that they can negotiate better acquisition contracts.”

“Not a bad idea, Larry, old man, not a bad idea,” said Freddie. “It’d certainly help to get them on-side and it might make them a little more comfortable with dealing with us.”

“And, when we quibble over a clause, they’d know why we were doing it.”

“Yes, I see your point. Let’s think about it in a bit more detail. Anyway, that’s something new to worry about. I wanted to get an update on the current stuff.”

I gave Freddie an update on the current state of the Kushtian activities including the Emir’s purchases. I’d exchanged a number of documents with the Trade Minister and we now had a frame contract that everyone, even Elly, was happy with. The Trade Minister was working with the Council and other government departments to get together a consolidated list of likely requirements and we were due to discuss how we might help build the market for imported product outside the government as well. Freddie seemed pretty pleased.

He asked about the Steve Glennis project. I had to admit it was taking longer than I’d hoped. We’d identified the target – Lady Marchmont – and Steve was happy with that. Research had been working on a collection proposal but it was proving a challenge to put together something that looked as though it would work. Steve had been being quite patient, he felt it was better to take the time and get it right. The urgency had gone out of it from his side and he’d really been taken with the pictures we provided, especially some of the covert video footage. We’d managed to get that from one of the paparazzi that had been caught filming her with one of a string of boyfriends during a holiday in Mustique. He’d had seven kinds of shit kicked out of him which had left him in no doubt that he couldn’t publish it but he was happy to cut his losses and let us have it at a price.

We talked about the market research report. Freddie seemed happy for me to carry on exploring new market opportunities. He was still thinking what to do about the sales activities now that Brian wasn’t around. Luckily he wasn’t thinking about pointing them at me. I had enough to worry about.

I told him about Kelly. He had a good laugh at the bit about the gun’s safety catch. “I told Harry you weren’t safe to be allowed out,” he chuckled. I didn’t really try to get introduce the idea of trying to establish a “force-free” slave line based on recruiting willing slaves. I thought Freddie had enough on his plate at the moment without more good ideas for new things to do. And I knew that if I wanted to get very far with that argument I’d need a lot more solid evidence. Even then it might not be enough.

We finished up talking about Rachel. I said I had the first step set up for the following day. He said, “Good, let’s hope it works,” with one of his most worrying smiles. “Oh,” he said, “by the way I’ve drawn a line under the whole Brian business, I mean his family will still finish their programme – that all seems to be working well – but I’ve pulled him out of it. It just wasn’t fair on him. And it wasn’t doing me any good either.”

I didn’t really know what to say. “And next?” seemed about the only question to ask.

“I don’t know,” said Freddie with a sigh that indicated he really was letting go of the whole thing. “I just asked Elly to sort it out. She’s good at that sort of thing. No loose ends with any of his associates, no mess. It’ll be all right. I can rely on Elly.”

I suddenly realised that when Clegg said “sort it out” he wasn’t simply talking of Brian getting a new career direction, unless you include in that playing a major supporting role in some local construction project.

I wasn't sure which I found more disturbing; the obsessive vengefulness that he had shown before or the disinterest in what presumably would be Brian's violent demise that he was showing now. I just knew that I didn't want to be on the receiving end of either.

Chapter 47: Crash Team

Anaphylactic shock is a terrifying condition. The symptoms are extreme. The onset is rapid. The outcome can be fatal.

The Doc and I had planned the scenario carefully. She dosed Rachel’s meal with the cocktail of drugs that she’d calculated would replicate the symptoms while I distracted the guard that was about to take it in to her. We wanted his response to be genuine.

The symptoms started to appear very shortly after she started eating. The guard hit the panic button when it became obvious that she was having a problem. I arrived with the Doc to find her clutching at her throat with one hand and her belly with the other. The Doc took her pulse. “It’s racing like anything,” she said. Rachel was coughing saying she couldn’t swallow, that she had cramping pains in her stomach, that she was finding it hard to breath. She lost control of her bowels. She was groaning in a mixture of pain and terror, staring wildly around her trying to understand what was happening to her.

“Help me, I’m dying,” she gasped. “It’s all going – awwkkgh – so black. I can’t…..”

The Doc turned to the guard. “Get my bag,” she said, “Quickly! It’s in my office.”

“I’m not supposed to leave her,” he said.

“Do it, or you’ll have to explain to Clegg why we’ve lost her,” she barked. Sheepishly the guard padded off.

“What do you think’s happening?” I said.

“It looks like anaphylactic shock,” the Doc said. “I need to give her adrenalin.” Rachel was clutching at the Doctors arm, choking and looking wild eyed in terror.

Rachel passed out before the Guard got back. The Doc grabbed her bag and grabbed a hypodermic, using it to administer supposedly, adrenalin, actually a glucose solution that would do no further harm. But then neither the Guard nor Rachel knew that the effect of the drugs would wear off quite quickly anyway.

She recovered in the Prep Centre’s clinic, laying on a bed, a glucose drip in her arm, an oxygen mask over her mouth and nose and with me holding her hand.

She peered weakly at me. Muttering from behind the oxygen mask, “Whha… what happened? Where am I?”

“Shh,” I said, “don’t try to talk. You’ve had a bad attack. The Doctor will be here in a minute.”

She pulled her hand away from me. “Why are you here?” I didn’t try to take it back.

“I was worried about you, Rachel.” That at least was true. I’d really been concerned that she was going to die even though I’d known that it wasn’t likely. I guess I hadn’t wanted the horse to die so soon in the exercise. “But rest now. I’m sure you’ll be all right.”

The Doc appeared. “Ah, she’s recovered consciousness,” she said. “How are you feeling?”

“Weak,” said Rachel, quietly. “But the pains have gone, I can breath again.”

“The adrenalin worked.”

“Why? What was it? I thought I was going to die?”

“You might very well have done. I shan’t know for certain until I get the results of the blood tests but it looks like an anaphylactic episode. Are you allergic to anything? Nuts for example?”

“Nuh, no, I don’t think so.”

“It’s just that it’s a common cause of this sort of reaction. But yes, you could have died. Anaphylactic shock can kill. Extremely low blood pressure, breathing failure. They can be fatal.”

Rachel tried to lift herself up, but fell weakly back. “I’m not tied or chained,” she said.

“No,” said the Doctor. “But you’ll feel too weak to go anywhere. Just rest for now. Get your strength back.”

She still had her collar on, of course. She wouldn’t be going anywhere even if she did feel able to but it suited us for her to feel that she was being trusted. “I’ll let you rest Rachel,” I said. “Don’t worry about anything, I’ll see you later.”

I looked in on the medical centre later. She was asleep. The Doc had given her a mild sedative. She’d been happy to have it administered. It was the first time she hadn’t fought us about something.

The following morning she was sitting up in bed, wearing a white patient’s robe and looking a whole lot perkier. She still had a drip in her arm. She was hooked up to a blinking and beeping ECG machine. What she didn’t know was that the readings weren’t always real. It’s surprising how ill you can suddenly feel if a machine tells you your heart rate has risen and your blood pressure has dropped.

“How are you, Rachel?” I asked.

The Doc appeared. “She’s still weak,” she said. “Aren’t you dear?” Rachel nodded. “So don’t spend too long with her.”

“Thank you,” she said, quietly, dropping her eyes, “for saving me.”

“It was the Doc,” I said. “It was lucky she was there. I couldn’t have done anything.”

“I didn’t think anyone cared,” she went on. “I thought you all just wanted the meat, just whatever you could get, whenever you wanted it.”

“We just want you to get well, Rachel. That’s all.”

“What happens? When I’m well?”

“That just depends on you Rachel. You write the script for your life, even here. Wait till you’re a bit stronger. Until that,” I pointed to the now wildly fluctuating ECG scan. Rachel looked at it, frightened again, “until that gets a whole lot more regular. Then we’ll set things up so you can be more comfortable. Sukie can look after you.” I’d made a good call with that idea, Rachel gave a weak smile.

I left Rachel and spoke to the Doc. “How soon can she come out of here?”

“For real? Right now,” she replied. “For what you need? Leave it a couple of days.”

I did. The set up we’d organised was to convert one of the visitor suites into a flat for me. Sukie had been installed, happy to be out of the cells and pleased to be with me. I’d told her she’d be helping with Rachel’s recovery. She seemed happy. They’d got on well before when Rachel had been recording her experiences. The Doc brought Rachel down in a wheel chair – she was still weak but that was as much due to her own fear as to any drugs that had been used on her. She had her own bedroom in the suite. Sukie helped her into bed. She fell asleep almost at once.

I left Sukie and Rachel together. The suite had three bedrooms, a living area, bathroom and kitchen/dining area. It was ranged around a small grassed, garden area with a couple of trees. The two girls both had normal clothes to wear. They could pretty much do as they pleased in the suite, apart from the fact that they both still wore their collars.

I had plenty of work to do. It wasn’t until the evening that I got back to the suite. Rachel was sitting up in bed, Sukie was brushing her hair. Sukie smiled welcomingly as I appeared. Rachel managed a smile as well.

“Hello,” I said. “How are you Rachel?”

“Better,” she said. “Not well, but better.”

“She has had some tea, Sir,” said Sukie.

“Good,” I said. “But please don’t call me, Sir. Larry is fine, in here.” Sukie looked grateful.

Rachel looked up at me and suddenly burst into tears. She clutched at Sukie who held her closely. “I’m so scared. What if it happens again? The Doctor still doesn’t know what caused it. I don’t want to die. Not like that. It won’t happen again. Will it?”

“Shh, shh,” said Sukie cradling Rachel against her.

“Who knows, Rachel,” I said, trying to be sympathetic but also honest. “We all have to die.”

“But like that? No, it’s too horrible.”

“Worse than living here?”

“Worse than living like this,” she said smiling at Sukie. She put her arms around her and hugged her back.

“I don’t know,” I said, “it could have been some effect of a combination of drugs, I suppose. It might not happen again if we can keep you off them.” At least in that I was being honest. “Don’t worry about it happening again, we’ll keep you well.” She looked up at me. I could tell she wanted to believe me.

“You’ve been working hard,” said Sukie to me. “Can I get you some food? Rachel will be all right for a while.” I looked across at Rachel. She nodded.

“Yes, Sukie,” I said. “I’d like that.”

“And perhaps later I should come to your room?” Sukie said. Rachel was clearly startled by her directness.

“That would be nice, Sukie,” I said, “but I want you to worry about Rachel at the moment. Fix me something to eat and then look after Rachel for the evening. I have some more work to do anyway.” I don’t normally turn down gift horses, I thought, but if I was going to get the other horse to talk, that was the right move. Rachel even looked a little impressed.

Chapter 48: The Write Stuff

It took about a week. Rachel was getting stronger by the day. We put some gym equipment into the suite so she could exercise. Sukie was doing a good job of caring for her and I had to admit that I’d been enjoying having the two of them to come back to at the end of the day.

I came back in and Rachel and Sukie were playing chess, Tommy Smith’s recording of Eric Satie’s Gymnopédie was playing on the CD player. The two of them looked up at me as I dropped my papers on the table. Rachel waved. Sukie got to her feet.

“How’s the game,” I asked, looking at the board.

“Rachel is winning,” said Sukie. Rachel looked surprised. I looked down at the pieces.

I could see what she had to do. “Sometimes you have to sacrifice something to get what you want,” I said, looking at the position of Rachel’s queen. Rachel looked again at the board and then, finally, moved her queen. Sukie, her own king now in check, had no choice but to take it. Her capturing knight now lay vulnerable to Rachel’s bishop. It swept across the board to remove the knight.

“Checkmate,” laughed Rachel, clapping her hands. Sukie smiled to Rachel and then smiled in turn at me. Rachel pushed the board away from herself. “You’re right,” she said. “sometimes you do have to sacrifice things.” She turned towards me. “I feel things have started again. Since the attack. It might happen again but it might not. Either way I am here now. I have left a lot behind me. I have to find where I go next, from here, not from somewhere else. Maybe that needs acceptance. Maybe that needs sacrifice.”

“Maybe,” I said, watching her.

“Sukie tells me you saved her too.” Sukie looked embarrassed as she went to clear away the chess pieces and the board.

“No. No, I didn’t save her. She saves herself. I gave her a new place in which to try.”

“I want to save myself too. I have a new place too, since the attack.”

“Can you accept things the way that Sukie does? You have the strength I am sure but can you do it?”

Rachel looked thoughtful. “I’m not sure,” she said, “but I want to try. Do what you want with me. I’ll learn acceptance. I’ll make myself for the life I have to lead here. I’ll write for you.”

“I want to believe you, Rachel. I’m sure you can make yourself. You just need to follow your own script. Can you write it?”

“Yes,” she said. “I am writing it already,” she tapped the side of her head. “In here.”

“I could get you a laptop. It would be easier.”

Rachel smiled. “Later,” she said. “Come to bed, now. With Sukie and me. Now. It’s in script.”

Sukie was standing at the door to the bedroom. They had obviously discussed this already. She was grinning widely, pleased that, at last, she and I would be together again. We took ourselves to bed for over three hours. At one point Rachel was kneeling with her wrists bound, fellating me while Sukie knelt across me, her tiny nipples pressed against my face. At another Rachel tied Sukie’s wrists, giving head to her while I stroked the two girls. All three of us, panted and grunted our way through orgasm after orgasm. (Well they did at least, I’m no athlete. But they didn’t let the fact that I had spent myself prevent them continuing to enjoy themselves, taking amusement in my exhaustion while they pleasured one another.)

Rachel and I were still together in bed the following morning. She still wearing nothing apart from her collar and the silken cords that she and Sukie had used in bondage play looped loosely around her wrists.

Sukie appeared at the door to the bedroom, naked and carrying a breakfast tray for the three of us. She sat on the bed beside us. The three of us devoured the figs, honey yoghurt, rolls, orange juice and coffee.

Rachel sat up, putting her hand on my thigh. “I meant it,” she said. “I’ll do what you want. I’ll write for you.”

“I know you mean it,” I said. “I believe you want to. I have a job for you. There is a group of four women going through a new form of orientation. Go and talk to them. Write about them, understand what has been done to them. I want to understand how they feel. You may think it’s brutal. Can you do it?”

She gave me a look of firm resolve. “Yes,” she said, “I can.”

“You’ll have to be chained outside of here,” I said.

She looked shocked for a moment but then smiled. “Of course,” she said. “I should have realised. That’s all right. I understand.”

I breathed a sigh of relief internally. At least she had crossed that hurdle of acceptance. I made a few phone calls. After a few minutes a guard appeared with a set of shackles and a laptop to escort Rachel. She went with him willingly.

I’d always meant for Rachel to be exposed to the sexualisation of Brian’s family at some point in the process and it seemed like now would be as good a time as any. The idea was to give Rachel the opportunity to demonstrate her resolve both to me and to herself and to see that she could confront what the organisation did.

I stopped by at one point to watch her through the one way mirrors that looked into the rooms that Brian’s family occupied. The light in the rooms was bright, the colours vivid. Beth and Ella were showing Rachel a range of sex toys, all in bright, primary colours with soft rounded edges. Beth lifted up her short pale green smock exposing her naked breasts and allowing Rachel to experiment with one of the vibrators on her nipples. She laughed as the tickling sensation brought her the pleasure she craved. The two girls drew Rachel to one side showing her Alice as she applied body paint to Carol’s naked flesh. The swirling psychedelic patterns recalled those I’d seen on old ‘60’s album covers. Carol was smiling happily as Alice drew the brush across her back making a curving line from the nape of her neck to the base of her spine. She reached out for a handful of soft berries from a bowl of fruit near her head, cramming some into her mouth, the red berry juice trickling down her chin, before beckoning to Beth, Ella and Rachel in turn to feed each of them some of the fruit. Alice stood up. Carol had obviously been practicing her own artistic skills on her sister with an elaborate paisley patterned design across her belly stretching up to between her breasts. It was only as I stood there looking at it that I realised it was an abstract rendering of a vulva, rays of light shining out from the clitoris, beneath it a colourful, patterned penis stretching up towards it. Alice walked across to the pile of toys and picked up an acid pink, soft plastic, dildo. She started to lick and suck at it. As she did so it was obvious that the vibration in her thong kicked in to reward her compliant behaviour as she smiled and clutched at her crotch, sliding back on the couch in ecstasy.

When Rachel returned that evening it was clear that she had had done more than just confront what the organisation was doing. She had been fired up by what she had seen.

“Do you want to talk, Rachel?” I asked.

She shook her head. “No, I want to write. I really want to write. I’ll use my room. Why don’t you and Sukie enjoy yourselves for the evening. I really need to write.” Her eyes were flashing with eagerness, her cheeks flushed. She scurried into her room, clutching her laptop to her.

Sukie emerged from the kitchen. She saw Rachel disappear. “She is better?”

“I don’t know,” I said. “She seems to have found a new way forward. We’ll have to see,”

“You’re worried about her,” Sukie said. “I can see. And it’s about her, isn’t it? Not just what she means to the business or what that means to you?”

I nodded. As always, Sukie, managed to see inside what was going on.

“You won’t send me away will you? If she is well?”

“No, Sukie, I won’t do that,” I said reassuringly. Although I wasn’t sure how I could justify hanging on to her at the end of the project, I didn’t think I could betray her like that after all she had done.

She smiled, grateful. “Come,” she said. “I’ll make some food. Rachel will be busy for hours. You need something to take your mind off your worries.”

“Yes,” I said. “I’ll let you win at backgammon again if you like.”

“Let me win!” Sukie laughed. “I suppose the slave must let her keeper retain his illusions.”

“Of course,” I said.

Chapter 49: Rachel’s Report

Rachel worked on her report for all that evening. She slept by her laptop. I heard her working at it at various times through the night. When I got up to leave the suite for a meeting with Harry, she was fast asleep across the keyboard of the computer.

I had to put up with quite a bit of teasing from Harry and the others over my personal harem, as Rick had called it. “You’ll be off to Kushtia next,” he’d said. “What with Tricia, those two and that Kelly girl. I don’t know how you have the energy.”

The truth was I didn’t have the energy. I hadn’t seen much of Tricia or Kelly. Tricia had been a bit pissed off when I told her I was moving into the flat with Rachel and Sukie, which I guess was understandable. The project for Rachel was soaking up all of my time. I certainly hadn’t got time to go off playing kinky games with Kelly. As Freddie had said, I didn’t want pressing any harder on this one.

When I got back to the suite, Rachel and Sukie were waiting for me. It wasn’t surprising, really; they couldn’t leave after all. What was surprising was Rachel’s appearance. She’d made up her face and done her hair (actually I reckoned that Sukie had helped with that). She was wearing a very short skirt and a very tight, low cut top that left her arms and midriff bare. She had put on the manacles that were used when she needed to leave the suite. She was holding a folder, which I guessed was her report. Sukie stood beside her holding a leash that ran to Rachel’s collar.

I sat down at the table. Somehow I felt I should let Sukie or Rachel make the first move. Sukie led Rachel towards the table.

“The slave Rachel wishes to speak, Sir,” Sukie said.

I felt that the situation demanded formality and a firm tone. She wouldn’t need questions now. Maybe that could come later. “Approach slave,” I said, beckoning to her and noticing that she seemed pleased by being addressed that way. “Say what you have to.”

“I have completed my report, Sir,” Rachel said, putting the folder on the table. “Can I talk to you about it?”

“Yes, of course, slave. What is it?” I was concerned in case she had found the programme too close to her own experiences of rape.

“I’ll explain about it in a moment but there’s something else I have too say. I want to undergo the programme. Myself. I’ll do it willingly. This is my script. I want to do this and write for you. They were so alive; so untroubled by anything apart from pleasure; so lost in their desire to please. It’s what my life should be; about pleasure and pleasing.”

“And you understand what is involved?”

“You will see that if you read the report. I think you’ll find it thorough.”

“I’m sure it is Rachel,” I said.

“It’s in my script,” she said firmly. “But you own me. You saved me.” She dropped to her knees. “You can say if I may follow my script.”

I put out my hand and brought her to her feet. “Of course, Rachel,” I said. She smiled. “Let me talk to the team tomorrow.” She looked sad. “We cannot do it now. I have to be sure that you are properly cared for. I don’t want the risk of you being hurt again.” She smiled again with relief, grateful that I wasn’t simply trying to postpone things. Nothing could have been further from my mind. I looked across at Sukie. She nodded. Her judgement was important to me. I wanted things to turn out right for Rachel, I wasn’t sure she knew what was best for herself yet, but I trusted Sukie to understand. Rachel hugged me as best she could with her wrists in chains.

“Now, Sir,” said Rachel making a visible effort to contain herself, “would you like to hear the report or perhaps you might like to take pleasure in my body.”

I took her by the arm and pulled her down to site beside me. “The report for now,” I said. “Perhaps Sukie can fix us some food.” Rachel looked disappointed. “And then perhaps we can all play later.” She brightened up. Sukie bowed, smiled happily, and headed off to the kitchen.

Rachel picked up the file and began pointing out the important parts of her report. “Here’s the account of the process,” she said barely pausing for breath as she hopped backwards and forwards through the folder. “I understand that you saw something of the initial stimulation programme. There’s a summary of the normalised environment and the technology that they have used for the thong and the women’s reactions to it. They’ve managed to do some psychological profiles of each of the women now and I’ve summarised those. And here is a table showing the results of the progressive reduction in time from initial stimulation to orgasm as they have each progressed through the programme. I spoke to the two girls first. They were both quite inexperienced sexually so it was an interesting exercise to contrast their reactions to that of their mother and their aunt. It was so useful to have family members like that. Here’s how they felt about things like the toys and the free expression, music, art, colour and sensations of touch and taste and smell. And here’s the accounts of their first sexual encounters following the completion of the programme and their reaction to varying frequencies of stimulation from the thong. I’ve put in an account from each of them on how they felt initially and their attitudes at the completion of the programme. What was also fascinating was the reaction of the men that they had been with. I managed to get details from some of them as well. They describe the performance of the women as extremely satisfying, far improved over rape – unless of course forced sex was being specifically sought – and better than most sexual encounters in almost every case. Only those in committed relationships felt that their encounters with the subjects did not fully measure up to those with their own partners and even then there are some thoughts that where a commitment already exists that the programme could reinforce it.” She looked shyly at me. “I’m sorry, Sir,” she said. “I’m talking too much.”

“Not at all, slave,” I said. She sat up with pride at the use of the term. “You’re just following your script.”

“You’re making fun of me,” she said, accusingly.

“No, not at all. I’m glad you found this in yourself. You can be safe now.”

“I know,” she said. “I have to lose something in order to gain other things. I’m ready to do this.”

And she was. I was able to get her started on the programme the following day. She’d spend the day relaxing with Sukie to prepare herself. The programme proper would start in the evening. That gave me time to go with Harry for a further meeting with the Emir. We had to deliver the first part of his shipment.

Chapter 50: New Homes

The Emir had been very specific. He had wanted his new property delivered without any “preparation” as he called it. “I know you have a very good Centre, Larry my friend, but I was always told a Kushtian teaches their own, so I’ll do it that way if you don’t mind.” Well, of course we didn’t mind. It was a whole lot less effort for us that way, all we had to do was to pack and ship. Harry and I took the van up to the Emir’s new home. We were keen to see whether he wanted to take delivery of Sarah as well. We’d got the first six of his fourteen items all wrapped up cosy in the back and we planned to be back in the Prep Centre that afternoon.

It wasn’t to be quite as straightforward as we’d hoped.

The main problem was that when we turned up at the Emir’s place he wasn’t home. Who was home was his daughter.

One of the Emir’s heavies opened the door. Verbal communication didn’t seem to be his strong point but we managed to make him understand that there were items in the back that needed moving across to the castle keep accommodation. He grunted to indicate that he’d do something about it. One of his pals emerged from a room off the lobby to help. The two of them began to unload the van, wheeling each of the girls off on her own self contained pallet. Lauren, the Emir’s 19 year old daughter, swept into view. She was quite small, maybe only five feet two or three tall, but her voice was loud enough to crack a glass.

“Hey, what’s this?” she called. “Looks like the curse of the mummy’s tomb!” She wasn’t far wrong with each of the girls wrapped tightly in the white tape that kept them strapped to their boards. “Dad said you’d be dropping these off. He’s not back yet. You’d better come through.” She gestured through towards the lounge. “I hope that this lot end up being more use than the one you left him.”

I looked at Harry. That wasn’t the reaction we’d expected. She wasn’t really trained as a domestic slave but we’d thought that Sarah would have been all right here. We followed the Emir’s daughter into the lounge. She flopped down on one of the enormous couches.

Sarah was standing at the far end of the lounge. The pillory had been brought up from the dungeon and Sarah was locked helplessly in it. “I need to keep an eye on this one,” Lauren said. Poor Sarah was bent forward with her head sticking through the central hole of the pillory, her wrists trapped in the holes to either side. In her left hand she held a heavy leather paddle, in her right a many tailed flogger, in her mouth a riding crop. “That’s the only way she’s gonna learn, stupid bitch,” Lauren said with a determined look. I walked across to her, she was dressed in a bikini but instead of her she had been locked into a chastity belt. One metal band bit tightly into her waist, another stretched down from the middle of her back between her buttocks over covering her sex with a pierced metal plate and then running up to be padlocked to the waist band at the front. It was clearly uncomfortable, red sores could be seen on the inside of Sarah’s thighs where the belt had rubbed.

Her backside was criss-crossed with wheals from a vicious beating. She turned her head towards me with a pleading look in her eyes but kept silent, unable to speak, fearful of dropping the crop from between her lips.

“Do you know how I found her when I got here?” Lauren said, “sprawled by the pool with one of these stoopid guards waiting on her. Sure she had shackles on her but the guard looked like he’d been having a really good blow job, and she was lounging around like she owned the place. Jeez! Tried to kid me that the guards had been taking advantage of her. She had a day in the scold’s bridle for that. It’s obvious what the little slut was up to. She’s been finding out what slaves are for since I turned up, haven’t you my dear?” Sarah nodded slowly. “The chastity belt is to make sure she behaves. The crops and floggers are to remind her what happens when she doesn’t.

Harry was looking for an opportunity to get Sarah out of her predicament. “She should sort out the new slaves,” he said. “Make sure they’re settled into their cells properly.”

To my surprise Lauren looked thoughtful. “Yeah, sure,” she said. “Dad will want them all ready to go when he gets back. Here’s the key, you can let her out.” She tossed him a bunch of keys. Harry caught them and unlocked Sarah from the pillory. “Go on, slut,” Lauren smiled, waving Sarah off. “You heard the man. Make sure they’re sorted out and tell them what to expect round here.” Sarah put down the flogger, crop and paddle and shuffled off, her movements restricted by a short length of chain between her ankles. Lauren watched her go. “Do you guys want a beer?” she said.

“Shouldn’t we check she’s doing as she’s told, after what you said?”

“Nah, I’ll show you. Dad’s got all this sorted.” She picked up the remote control for the TV. As the set came into life she punched a button on the remote. The channel changed on the TV to show one of the cells. “Neat – huh?” Lauren said.

One of our captives had been laid on their back on each of the bunks in the cell. They were still swathed in tape and the wheels attached to the frame that they were bound to could be seen clearly at their feet. We heard a click as the cell door opened and heard one of the guards say. “Sing out when you’ve done. I’ll let you out then.” The still shackled Sarah came into view. The door gave a clang as it was slammed behind her.

“Oh my,” we heard Sarah say as she saw the helpless forms laid out on the bunks of the cell. “You poor things, let me help you out of that tape.” We watched as the tape cocoons that held the girls squirmed in response to a friendly voice.

Sarah started to free the girl in the bunk nearest to her. As the tape came clear of the girl’s head we could see that it was Greetje. With the swathes of tape removed from her head the terrified look in the girl’s eyes could be clearly seen. She tried to wriggle but with her arms taped to her sides and her legs trapped one against the other she could do little more than twitch. Sarah eased away the tape that covered Greetje’s mouth and prised free the wad of cloth that had been gagging her.

“Oh, dank u,” the girl coughed, “thank you.”

“Hush,” said Sarah, “wait. I must free you and your friends.” She went to work on the tape that held the girls limbs. Soon it was lying in a heap on the floor of the cell and Greetje had managed to ease herself up into a sitting position pushing the board that she had been strapped to onto the floor. She looked around her, taking in the solid stone walls, the barred window and the massive door.

Sarah was working to free the second girl. Greetje got uncertainly to her feet, steadying herself on the side of the bunk. “Where are we? What has happened to us?”

Femke was next to be freed from the tape. She sat up shakily and turned to hug Greetje. Sarah went to work on the other two girls. Talking over her shoulder to Greetje and Femke, she said, “You’ve been kidnapped by slavers,” she said “and you are in the home of your new owner. You’ll have to do exactly as you are told. These people are very cruel. Don’t try to resist them.” We could see from the monitor that both girls were clearly terrified.

“But why would we be kidnapped? No-one would pay a ransom for us; we have no rich family; we have no money.”

“No, that’s not the point. It’s not for money. You have been brought here for yourselves. It’s not for money. You have been brought here for your bodies. You belong here. Just like this furniture. You belong to the man that owns this bed. His bed. His table. His room. His women. You will do whatever he tells you.”

Greetje and Femke held each other in fear. “It cannot be true.”

Sarah pointed to the anklets and shackles that lay on the chair beside the bed. “You must put those on,” she said. “We all have to wear a collar or an anklet and chains.”

“No,” said Femke, “we won’t. You can’t make us.”

“No,” said Sarah, “I can’t but there are those that can. They’ll hurt you. Believe me. It’s better to do as they say.” Greetje and Femke looked at one another and picked up the anklets. Sobbing, they fitted them around their ankles, reacting in fear as they locked shut with a menacing clunk.

Back in the lounge, Lauren smirked. “There,” she said, pointing at the television, “what good little girls. Dad will be pleased. Anyway, excuse me. I have to use the can.” She got up and flounced off. Harry and I just sat and looked at one another.

Sarah returned having finished “welcoming” the castle’s new residents. Lauren was still out of the room. Sarah turned to the two of us. “Please,” she said, “please take me back.”

Harry smiled in response. “I don’t know,” he said. “It sounds like you’ve not been very good.” He pointed to the chastity belt.

“I didn’t deserve this, really I didn’t. I mean the Emir even told the Guards not take any liberties with me. I just was getting so bored in my cell and they said I could use the pool and the gym if I did it naked. Well I didn’t mind. And yes they groped me a bit and I didn’t like that, but that was all.”

Harry looked sceptical. “Come on Sarah, I know what these guys are like. They’re no different from Rick’s team."

“Well, all right. Yes I did give one of them a blow job and, yes, he was getting me a coke when Lauren appeared but that’s all there was to it. I don’t deserve this,” she tugged at the iron band circling her waist. “Oh, no, she’s coming back.” Sarah picked up the paddle, flogger and crop and put her head and wrists back in place in the pillory.

Lauren drifted back into the room. She looked at Sarah in the pillory and pushed its locking padlock closed. “Good,” she said, “glad you’re learning where a slut belongs. Locked in there you won’t go sniffing round the cocks of any of the guards, will you? Just remember around here you ain’t the original good time that was had by all.”

She flopped down on the settee as her father came in through the door. “Hi, princess,” he beamed. “Hope you’ve been good.”

“Daddy, you know I always am,” Lauren batted her eyelashes at her father in a way that must have earned his indulgence since her earliest childhood.

The Emir looked around at Sarah in the pillory. “Lauren, I told you that Sarah was to be your babysitter, this doesn’t look like how I said things should be.” He turned to Harry and me. “Yeah, I know it seems odd but us Kushtians think a girl needs her father or an older woman around until she’s married.”

Lauren looked sulky. “Daddy we’re not in Kushtia now. I don’t need a babysitter and besides you should have seen what she was up to.”

The Emir looked on patiently. “I will Lauren, I will. I’ll have a look at the videos later. Now let Sarah out of the pillory and leave us boys to talk business.”

“Whatever,” said Lauren before unlocking the pillory and walking off.

The Emir lifted the top bar of the pillory and helped Sarah out. He took the flogger, crop and paddle from her and put them on a table. “I don’t know what you did to give her that opportunity,” he said to Sarah, “but I guess that you’ve worked out that it wasn’t a great idea.”

Sarah looked apologetic but said nothing. Brad turned back to us. “So you got all the girls I asked for?”

“Yes,” said Harry. They’re all installed.”

“Great. And what about this one?” He reached out and patted Sarah’s arse. She looked pleadingly at Harry.

Harry shook his head. “Sorry Brad,” we’ve looked at it and we want to hang onto her for now at least. I’m sure we could find you a new PA.”

Brad looked disappointed. “Shame,” he said. “I was just getting used to her being around. Kind of has the right look for the place.”

“It’s a shame you never met Cindy.” Sarah had chimed in from the other side of the room. “She looks just like me, people used to take us for sisters and….” Her voice tailed off as she realised just where what she was saying might lead.

“Now that’s interesting,” said Brad.

“Yes indeed,” responded Harry. “Tell us more.”

“Oh, no, I couldn’t, I mean, you wouldn’t. That wouldn’t be fair. Not at all. No” Sarah was evidently worried. Harry and Brad exchanged a look that suggested she had good cause to be.

“Don’t be worried,” Brad said to her. “Go and wait by the swimming pool. Harry, come and give me a hand with something.” The two of them disappeared. Sarah and I made our way through the house to the pool. All the way she was saying that she shouldn’t have said anything and she couldn’t possibly be involved in anything to do with Cindy. She was so busy protesting to me that she didn’t see what Brad and Harry were wheeling in along the side of the pool. Dragged up from the dungeon, Brad’s replica of a ducking stool was pushed into place.

“Please, Larry, speak to them. I shouldn’t have said anything. I’m sure she doesn’t look like me really. And anyway it was a while ago and .. Oh!” Sarah gave a startled cry as the edge of the stool struck the back of her knees. She fell backwards and in a moment Harry and Brad had fixed her into the seat, strapping her in with a belt around her waist and others which held her wrists against the stool’s armrests. “No, please no!” Sarah yelled as Harry and Brad swung the beam of the ducking stool out over the pool.

“Now,” said Brad. “This implement only dates back to around 1597 and then as a method of punishment for scolds, prostitutes and witches. However, I suspect it could also have been used as a way of enquiring into matters of interest to the authorities. Let’s see if it helps us with our enquiries.” With that he let go of the beam and the stool with Sarah on it plummeted into the pool. Harry and Brad held their end of the beam up for a few moments, keeping Sarah submerged before they put their weight onto it, hauling a spluttering Sarah back to the surface. “And again, I think,” said Brad, levering the beam up and lowering a now screaming Sarah once more beneath the waters.

She came up once more, kicking her legs and trying to break away from the straps that held her in the stool. “Now, perhaps you’d like to tell us more about Cindy,” Brad called from the pool side.

“No, no, no, n --- ppllpll,” came Sarah’s voice, first yelling and then burbling as she went under again. Four more duckings followed, each longer than the last, Sarah yelling more loudly and coughing and spluttering more violently on her return to the surface, her hair drenched and hanging limply.

Harry called a halt to the proceedings. “Good demonstration, Brad,” he said. “But I think we need a different approach. Either that or colder water.” Brad looked pensive for a moment.

Sarah was still kicking and complaining on the stool. Brad swung her back over the side and un-strapped her. “Hey, he said. “We didn’t mean no harm. You go and get yourself dried off.” He tossed a towel to the shivering Sarah. “There’s a dress over there. Put it on and we’ll get you a hot drink.”

While Sarah was dressing, Brad picked up the pool side phone and muttered a few quiet words to whoever was at the other end. As Sarah finished dressing, Harry clipped a leash to her collar and scolded her. “Really Sarah, you’re being very difficult.”

Brad, seemingly sympathetic, said, “Hey you’ve got to admire the girl’s principles. Not many girls would stand by their friends like that.”

Sarah brightened up. “Thank you,” she said, I’m glad you understand.”

“In fact, I’m so impressed that I’d just like to tell the other girls about this. It will be good for them to see that a slave doesn’t have to have her spirit completely crushed. Might make them accept things a bit easier.”

She said nothing but followed us as Brad led the way along one of the castle’s corridors.

Chapter 51: What Are Friends For?

The winding corridor eventually took us along to the accommodation cells. As we walked by Sarah said, “Aren’t we going to see the girls after all? I thought…”

“They’ve been moved,” said Brad. We turned a corner. Coming the other way was one of Brad’s guards. Clad only in black leather trousers and a leather hood that masked the upper half of his face, his torso glistened with the sweat of recent effort. He and Brad exchanged a few quiet words. The guard took the ring of keys that hung from a clasp on his belt and passed them to Brad. We carried on as the guard pushed passed us. Sarah watched fearfully as he went.

The corridor carried on down into the castle’s cellar and the room that the Emir had fitted out as a dungeon-come-torture chamber. Sarah gave a startled, “Oh!” as she entered the room.

What she saw was the six girls we had delivered to the Emir, locked into one or other of the Emir’s medieval “toys”. Femke was strapped to the heavy wooden rack, her arms and legs already stretched to painful tautness. Peta was hanging by her wrists and ankles which were tied star fashion to the rim of a great wooden wheel dangling from the ceiling of the room. She was crying out as she tried to relieve her arm and leg muscles of the strain of supporting her weight.

Janice had been tied, naked, in a hogtie. She hung by the ropes that ran around her chest so that her crotch was only millimetres above a knife sharp block of wood that threatened to split her in two if the rope supporting her should fail or be loosened. Karen sat alongside her strapped into a heavy wooden chair with her head locked in a strange frame that could be tightened by handle and ratchet. Similar boards designed to press and crush on limbs enclosed her arms and thighs. “We’re missing one,” said Brad. “Oh yes.” He pulled back a heavy oak box that was hanging from chains. It was clear from his effort that the box and its contents were extremely heavy. As he pulled it back a chained and helpless Jillie could be seen struggling, tied to the frame beneath it. “Terrible thing if this should fall,” he said, letting it swing back into place. Brad moved across to where Greetje was standing in a human form cabinet. Naked, bound and gagged, her eyes wide with terrified panic, she watched as Brad started to swing the door of the cabinet closed. A grotesque skeleton was painted on the front of the cabinet door providing a clear indication of the likely fate of the occupier. “This,” he said, “was known as the Iron Maiden. There’s one in Nuremberg which as you close the door pierces the occupant with spikes.” Greetje screamed behind her gag. “This one’s a bit different; you can control the depth of the spikes from the outside with this wheel. Of course it’s easy to get things wrong. Look at these,” he pointed to two thick spikes in the head piece of the cabinet’s door. “they’d pierce the eyes like cocktail sticks in olives.” Greetje screamed again. “And Greetje here is unlucky too. I hear she suffers from claustrophobia. Isn’t that right Harry?”

“Mmm,” said Harry responding. “Yes, she was in a terrible state when we got her out from behind the couch in the caravan after we snatched her. She must be finding this awful.”

“Well, yes. But still. Where was I?” He let the door of the Iron Maiden slam shut absent-mindedly. Sarah gave a horrified squeal. Greetje gave another gagged scream. “Oh yes,” Brad said to the helpless girls. “Thought I’d introduce you girls to Sarah,” he said. “We sort of wanted her to help us out with a problem but it seems like her principles won’t let her. We can’t persuade her to change her mind. I’d planned to do some other stuff this morning but now I’m feeling a bit upset and I’ll need you girls to help cheer me up. I hadn’t really thought I’d put these toys to use but it seems a shame to let them rust.” He grabbed Sarah. “Why don’t you sit down and have a chat with the girls. I’m sure when you explain your point of view they’ll be OK with it,” he said manoeuvring her to a set of stocks. He locked her ankles in the stocks. “Now if you’re going to chat.” Brad walked across to each of the girls in turn and pulled off the tape that gagged them. He opened the Iron Maiden and peeled back the tape gagging Greetje. Immediately she started yelling, hysterically, begging to be let free. “Oh, no,” said Brad, “that won’t work.” He smoothed the tape back down and shut the door again. Greetje’s muffled screams could still be heard from inside. “We’ll talk again in a bit, Sarah,” he said.

“You can’t do this,” yelled Sarah as he got to the door. “It’s, it’s, it’s unfair.”

“Unfair!” the Emir almost exploded. “What is unfair is slaves that won’t do as they’re told; slaves that think they can hold out on their owners. Just you remember girl, a slave owner invests a lot in his property he’s entitled to expect the slave keeps their part of the bargain. We do the owning, you do the being owned. This is all your fault, Sarah, you made the suggestion, now you’re backing out on it. Don’t talk to me about unfair. You can solve the problem yourself. It’s all up to you.”

We didn’t go far. The CCTV link in the next room let us watch the proceedings. Femke, Jillie and Karen were pleading the most convincingly. Janice was adding her own punctuation of groans as her own discomfort increased. Peta could be heard moaning from beneath the box that threatened to crush her. The whole conversation was punctuated by Greetje’s stifled but progressively more panic stricken screams from within the case that held her. Sarah was trying to defend herself.

“I can’t betray my friend,” she tried to explain. “How can I tell them where to find her? And it’s not my fault that the Emir is doing this to you.”

“We don’t care,” came back Femke. “Poor Greetje, locked in that thing, do you think she cares? Of course it’s your fault. If you hadn’t said anything he wouldn’t have thought of this. Who know what they’ll do in the future? You said yourself they are ruthless. You have to take care of the people closest to you and right now that’s us. Maybe they won’t find her. Maybe she’ll escape them. We can’t escape this.”

“I know. It’s horrible. I just don’t know what to do.” Sarah tried to struggle against the steel bands that held her ankles locked.

As she did so, the rope holding Janice above the knife like wooden block creaked and she dropped a millimetre or two. She squealed in terror as she felt the sharp rigidity of the block’s knife edge brush against her crotch. “Nooo!” she screamed. “The rope will break. It will split me in two.”

Greetje screamed again within the Iron Maiden setting off another round of sobbing and pleading

Sarah lasted for about five minutes. Soon she screaming to be freed, calling out that she’d do whatever we asked as long as the girl’s didn’t suffer any more.

We freed a sobbing Sarah from the stocks and took her back to the lounge. Lauren looked up as we came in. “Has she been trying it on again?” she sneered. “I hope she hasn’t talked you into taking that belt off her. She’ll be pushing the guards up against the wall in no time if you have.” Sarah burst into tears again.

“We’re taking her back with us,” Harry said.

“Like I care?” said Lauren.

“There’ll be a replacement.”

“Better send one that’s had her cunt plugged then.”

“Lauren!” interrupted Brad. “That’s enough. Just go to your room.”

“Whatever,” said a sullen Lauren as she slunk off.

“Grief,” said Brad, “she’s getting to be a real pain. And it will get worse when she find out I’ve found a husband for her and she goes back with him to Kushtia.”

“How come?”

“Do you think she’s going to find it easy to swap her trainers and baseball cap for harem slippers and a veil?”

“Ah, I see what you mean,” I said. “Not to mention the shackles.”

“Yup. But as the daughter of a Kushtian government official she’ll have to and learn to like it. Still, the problems of fatherhood, eh? You’ll sort things out with your girl?”

“Yes,” said Harry, “once she’s says she’ll do something she will. It may take us a while to set up the collection. It depends on her circumstances. If there’s any problem I’ll give you a call.”

Harry turned to Sarah. “Time to get you back,” he said.

“Where’s the gag?” she asked, grabbing it gratefully as Harry held out the gel ball gag in his palm. You could almost sense her relief as the gel swelled to fill her mouth. She held her wrists out for the handcuffs and was happy to be led to the boot of our car.

We left it until the following day before following up on the conversation at the castle. Sarah was back behind her desk when I went to join Harry in his office.

“Now,” said Harry, “let’s have a chat about your friend Cindy.”

“Oh,” said Sarah, looking crestfallen. She had evidently hoped the whole thing had been forgotten.

“Tell us some more about her. I hope you aren’t going to go back on your promise.”

“No, no. I couldn’t let the Emir do what he was doing. And poor Greetje. Will she be all right?”

“I think that’s still a bit up to you. I have to give the Emir a progress report tonight and I’m sure Greetje will be fine if I can tell him we’ve got some activity in hand.”

Sarah looked at first relieved and then miserable. “What do you want to know?” she said.

“Well let’s start with who she is and where we might find her.”

Sarah started hesitantly, “Her name’s Cindy Bailey. Like I said she looks a lot like me. Really, a lot, same hair, same build. We used to swap clothes sometimes. She’s two years older than me, people thought she was my big sister. She used to live in the same town; she worked in the next street and we’d meet up for lunch some times.”

“OK,” said Harry. “She used to live in the same town, you say. Where is she now?”

“I don’t know. We lost touch about a year ago.” She saw Harry’s sceptical look. “It’s true. You know I wouldn’t lie. I really haven’t seen her since then. I know her job was moving – she worked for another car dealer – BMW it was - and they were closing their garage and building a bigger one in the next town.” I thought Sarah looked tentative for a moment. “Coventry it was. I guess she went there. We swapped emails a few times but then, well, I got busy and she got busy. You know how it is.”

“And what did she do?”

“Just admin stuff like me. Booking cars in for servicing, sending out invoices, that sort of thing.”

Harry looked thoughtful, tapping his ruler on his desk. “Hmm, that may be enough to go on. I’ll get Research to do some work and we’ll see how far we get. Don’t think you’re off the hook though. First thing you can do is to type up this discussion as a memo to Rick. Ask him to do the initial research and work up a collection proposal. Better copy Larry here to keep him in the picture. When we’ve got Rick’s response we’ll see how you can help.”

Sarah looked woeful as she picked up her notebook and headed back to her desk.

Chapter 52: Rachel’s Programme

Rachel was laying on one of the couches where I had first seen Brian’s family being treated under the electro stimulation programme. She was sedated but conscious; she’d not objected when the Doctor slipped the hypodermic needle into a vein in her arm. She’d asked if Sukie could be with her for the start of the programme. We’d agreed and Sukie was sitting beside her stroking her hair. Rachel looked calm. The Doc lowered the gantry above her and took down each pair of wires in turn, fastening them to the studs that would carry the current across each nipple, across her clitoris, her vulva and her anus. I could see that in spite of the sedation Rachel was gripping Sukie’s hand tightly.

“We’ll start now,” said the Doc. “Are you ready?” Rachel gave the slightest nod. The Doc threw the switch and the sequence started. Rachel gave an involuntary grunt as the first pulses began. She gripped Sukie’s hand even harder at first but then seemed to relax. Soon a quiet smile spread across her face. The Doc turned to me. “We can leave her now,” she said. “There’ll be nothing more to do now for two hours.”

Sukie looked up at me. “Can I stay?” I looked at the Doc. She shrugged.

“Yes,” I said. “I’d like that. Thank you.” Sukie smiled and turned back towards Rachel. The Doc and I left the two of them in the room. I could hear the pulse generator humming quietly as we walked out.

“It’s been interesting,” the Doc said once we were out of the room and away from Sukie’s hearing. “I think what happened was that the mental trauma of the rapes and mistreatment and her focus on using that as preventing her conditioning created a sort of mental blockage. The drugs that we were using simply served to reinforce that. It was only the effects of the staged anaphylactic episode that allowed her to draw a line under that. As you say, it’s as if she’s been able to give herself a whole new start.”

“That doesn’t explain her willingness to undergo this though, does it?”

“No, not at all. I think that’s got to do more with her past before we took her in, if I’m honest. I wonder how well she had been able to accept her sexuality prior to us acquiring her. I think that she is basically highly sexed – all our psychological profiling prior to the programme indicate that her artistic drives are perhaps behind that. She’s highly emotionally aware and highly physically sensitive as well. If she had been in an environment where that had been suppressed its probable that there was considerable internal conflict. Seeing what had been done with the other women opened her eyes to a way she could reach what she suspected was in her already. It’s curious. In some ways she’s absolving herself of responsibility by being able to claim that her behaviour is the consequence of the programme but equally she has taken the responsibility of putting herself into the programme. It’s a bit of a paradox.”

“Well, I can agree that she’s quite highly sexed,” I said, thinking back to my recent encounter with her and Sukie.

The Doc, gave an embarrassed, “Hmmph. Well she’s staying in the treatment centre tonight. I want her to have at least four days on this part of the programme before taking the risk of exposing her to any other outside stimuli. Then she’ll go into her own normalised suite and start working with the thong.”

“That’s OK, Doc,” I said, “I’m as keen as you are for this to succeed. I don’t want to do anything to rock the boat. I’ve got some other work to do. If there’s nothing I can do for Rachel now, I guess I’ll get on. Let me know if there’s anything I should do.”

“Sure,” said the Doc.

I went back to my office and spent some time going through Rachel’s report on Brian’s family and the programme. I could see plenty of opportunities on the back of it, but then I guess you didn’t need to be a marketing genius for that. What I did do was to write a memo to Freddie suggesting that we use them for the hospitality event that I’d suggested for some of the buyers. Thought he’d think it was a good idea for all sorts of reasons.

I went back to the suite when I’d finished. One of the guards turned up escorting Sukie shortly after. “How is Rachel?” I asked. Sukie sank down on the couch, looking exhausted. “And how are you?”

Sukie looked up at me. “I’m. I’m all right.” She said hesitantly. “Rachel is fine too. I’m sorry. I just found it very frightening. She’s so very brave to do that.”

“I know. But it’s important to her.”

“I couldn’t do it,” Sukie was almost sobbing. “I thought I could do almost anything to please my man but, not, …. Not that.”

“She’s doing it to please herself, Sukie. No-one else.”

“You might believe that,” Sukie smiled. “You’re important to her, you know.”

“I know. She’s important to me. And so are you.” I sat down alongside her and took her in my arms. She was shaking.

“I can’t take the programme,” said Sukie. “But I can please you. If you want me to.”

I could see that right then nothing was more important to her. “I’d like that, Sukie,” I said. I did and she did too. Afterwards we both fell asleep. When I awoke Sukie slept on. I fetched her breakfast. She was outraged and we both laughed.

“Will you sit with Rachel again today?” I asked her.

“If you want me to,” Sukie said.

“You find it difficult, don’t you? I don’t want to make you.”

“I know. I will go but it is frightening. I don’t know if she will be the same when she comes back. She was always sweet and kind to me. Now perhaps she will feel jealous of me. Perhaps she will forget about me. Perhaps she will ask you to get rid of me.”

“I don’t think so, Sukie. And I don’t think I would listen if she did.” The girl brightened. “Look, let’s go and see her together. You needn’t stay if you don’t want to. There’s no need for you to be there. Unless you want to be.”

“Thank you,” she said, smiled and got out of bed to get showered and dressed.

We found our way back to where Rachel had been the day before. She was sitting, naked, on the side of the treatment couch. She waved as she saw us coming into the room.

The Doc appeared. “I’m just restarting things,” she said to us and then; “Lie down Rachel, please.” She picked up a hypodermic syringe. “Sedative,” she said. Rachel nodded, acceptingly. “Less than yesterday, though.” She nodded again. The Doc administered the injection. Rachel gave a comfortable, “mmm” as the sedative began to take effect. The Doc hooked up the wires and started the sequence of low frequency stimuli once more.

Rachel relaxed into it; mewing quietly, sighing, muscles twitching in response as the sequence took control. Sukie threw her arms around me. I took her out.

From what the Doc had said there was little point in either Sukie or myself being around after the first day. In spite of the lower level of sedation, the cumulative effect of the continuous stimulation meant that Rachel was pretty much lost in the programme apart from when she was sleeping – and she needed the sleep to allow her body to rest.

We both went to see her after she had been in the normalised environment for a couple of days. She came rushing towards us as soon as she saw us, flinging her arms around first Sukie – that comforted her – and then me.

Rachel was wearing one of the smock dresses in a pale blue that went well with her dark hair and piercing blue eyes. It hung from her neck collar, swaying loosely around her as she moved.

“You’re looking well.” I said. She was.

“Mmm,” she said. “I’m fine. Look it’s lovely here. See.” She waved around the flat. It was brightly lit, with cheerful colours and white wood furniture. “Let me show you. I’m going to write about it for you. So customers will know how their girls will be treated. I think they will need to know.” Her enthusiasm was infectious. Sukie was looking happier.

“We can watch all the television we want.” She picked up the remote and flicked through the channels. “Of course it’s all quite sexy stuff,” she paused on a scene of two girls stroking and licking at one another’s bodies, “but I like that. And there’s music.” I looked at a pile of CD’s, on top of the pile was Marvin Gaye’s ‘Sexual Healing’, there were plenty of other similar plays. “And magazines.”

I picked up one, it looked like the usual celebrity gossip magazine on the cover but the pictures inside showed the rich and famous in positions that would startle many of their fans. “Look,” she said gripping my arm and pointing with a giggle to the magazine I was looking at. “Who’d have thought she could do that?” She sank back on the couch. “It’s just lovely and I feel so…”

She paused and put her hand up to the side of her head. I saw she was wearing a small ear piece.

“I’m sorry,” she said. “I must do my exercises now. Will you excuse me? If I don’t .. they won’t .. Well, you know about the thong, don’t you?”

I nodded.

“If I do as they say then I get my pleasure from the thong. Not like with you,” she looked at me, “or you,” she turned to Sukie, “but it’s so nice and it seems so right in here. So I must exercise.”

“That’s all right, Rachel.”

“You should call me ‘Slave’ really Sir, or use my number.” No sooner had the words left her mouth than she gave an “Mmmm!” and clutched at her crotch. She gave a satisfied “Ohhh”, swallowed and blushed. I could see at once the effect of the reinforcing stimulation of the thong in response to approved, conformant behaviour.

I smiled. “Of course. Run along, Slave. Do your exercises. We can talk later. Remember what happens. I want you to write it for me.”

Rachel smiled and bowed her head. “Of course, Sir,” she said. “It will be my pleasure.” She laughed and skipped off towards the other room. Sukie and I left the room. I took her back to our suite.

“Rachel seems happy,” I said.

“Yes,” said Sukie slowly. “I think she is, but only time will tell if this is right for her. Where I was brought up it was usual for girls to learn to be subservient, to seek to bring pleasure. Here in the west it is not part of your culture. Perhaps it can be learned when you are older. I am not sure.”

“I’m not sure either, Sukie,” I said. “But I hope you will help her. It’s what she wants.”

“And it will be difficult for you.”

“For me?”

“It’s not easy to have someone who depends on you. You’ve been kind to her and to me. But being kind is not easy. Cruelty is always easier.”

As always Sukie gave me a valuable insight. I hadn’t really thought about what would happen when Rachel completed her programme. All I had thought so far was that she would be there, writing when I wanted. That and the fact that I’d have Freddie off of my back as well. I needed to think about what was next.

I went back to see the Doctor. “How’s she doing?” I asked.

“Well,” she said. “Really well. I mean she is obviously responding to the programme but it’s more than that. She’s really taken it on board very willingly. She’s making much quicker progress than the others we’ve put through it. We’ve started her on the exerciser already.”

“The excerciser? I knew she was doing some exercises but I wasn’t sure what was involved.”

“You can have a look if you like.” The Doc said, pulling back the curtains from a viewing panel that looked into part of Rachel’s accommodation.

Rachel was crouched, kneeling, over a metal frame. She didn’t appear to be strapped to it but she was effectively held in place by three plugs that protruded into her from the frame. One, at her head, filled her mouth, the others penetrated her arse and her vagina. The set up looked very similar to the cages and frames that we’d been using in Orientation for some time. Rachel’s fingers could reach buttons that were connected by wires to the plugs and to other wires that attached to her nipples.

“This is about reinforcing her ability to give herself pleasure. The thong gives her pleasure feed-back in return for conformant behaviours. This allows her to get used to acting directly for her own pleasure. The buttons control the activity of each of the plugs and the wires. The plugs can expand and contract and move in and out. The wires deliver low frequency pulses or short sharp shocks. The screen in front of her gives her the sequence of buttons that she should press. As long as she follows the sequence the plugs and wires deliver appropriately pleasurable stimuli. If she makes a mistake or she doesn’t respond quickly enough the stimuli stop and she has to wait for a while. That’s excruciating for her in her current state of arousal so she has a high incentive to keep pressing the buttons. It helps reinforce the idea that conformance brings pleasure. At this stage it is pretty much the equivalent to the thong, just more intensive and covering more points.” Rachel gave a moan. I could see she was sucking vigorously on the plug that filled her mouth as it moved backwards and forwards slowly. “After this she’ll be given a target score to achieve during a particular period and allowed to make her own choices about which stimuli she uses in what order.” The screen in front of Rachel changed again and she gave another squeal and bucked her hips as the pulsing at her mouth was succeeded by a thrusting motion form the plug that penetrated her cunt.

“What will she be like, Doc?” I said. “When she’s finished?”

“I’d have thought she’d be every man’s dream,” the Doctor said. “Obedient, respectful, willing to please and desperate for sex at every opportunity.”

“That’s going to take quite some living up to,” I said.

“She’s a writer, isn’t she?” I nodded. “She’ll be anxious to do whatever you want. So if you want her to write, she will. She’ll be very keen to please – she should produce good work, just because it will be important to please you. She’ll need stimulation in return, of course. You’ll have to maintain the positive feed-back at least for a while. But you can do that with the thong. Or you could grant her time on the exerciser. Or,” she gave me a look that suggested she’d already decided that I was a complete degenerate, “you can take care of things yourself. I’d advise a combination of the three really. Unless you want to completely wear yourself out. I’ll warn you that her appetite will almost certainly exceed your ability to respond.”

I could see that I had plenty to think about.

End of part 7