The Outpost
by Graham

This is a short story about The Settlement. If you want to read more, there are longer e-books available (“The Settlement” and “The Settlement 2: Under Attack”) available from . This story gives a good flavour of what is in the longer works. See more of my full-length novels at

Hearing the clink of the other woman’s chains, Rachel turned. She smiled.

“What’s up?”, asked the blonde, as she came up to the brunette. Are you still worried?

“I was just thinking about firewood again,” Rachel said. “I can’t see us lasting more than another week. There is loads over there.” She nodded in the direction of the boundary fence, where there was a dense row of mature scrub, with many dead sticks strewn beneath it.

The other girl, Kirsty, looked at Rachel, who at nineteen was a few years younger than herself, and very beautiful: thick, lustrous dark hair, a shapely figure, the longest eyelashes that Kirsty had ever seen. And in the weeks they had been in this outpost, Rachel had also showed herself to be a natural leader, intelligent and resourceful. But it was instantly plain that getting hold of the wood they could see was beyond even Rachel’s resourcefulness: it was several metres beyond the range of the chains that linked the women’s metal collars to the girl-rail system.

Rachel smiled again, reading Kirsty’s thoughts. She looked down at herself, at the bright metal bond as it dangled from its padlock. It hung in a gentle catenary before disappearing into the groove in the steel conduit that formed the girl-rails. Inside, it was welded to a steel ball that could slide along the conduit, but would not come out of the slot. The conduit itself, was, of course, firmly anchored to the ground: it was bolted to massive concrete blocks every couple of metres. It was, from the point of view of the Settlement community, a very convenient system, because it both kept the women secure and gave them all the freedom the could reasonably need, all without the bother of ever having to unlock them. It was also, as Rachel and indeed all the girls had long ago learned, completely inescapable.

“Come on,” said Kirsty. “It will be dark soon. Let us get inside.”

Rachel followed the other girl, her eyes fixed absently on the metal cuffs that held Kirsty’s hands behind her back. Rachel was of course similarly restrained, and both women were also fettered, their ankles joined by about forty centimetres of chain. Their fetters, like their collars and neck chains, were permanent. Their cuffs were sometimes removed - when there were men to supervise them. Apart from their chains, the girls were nude. Clothing, for Settlement women, was not permitted.

Their way took them past two of the fields for which they were responsible: the soil was gridded with girl-rails, to allow the women access. “At least,” said Kirsty, “we won’t starve.” The potato harvest was proving very successful, and it was easy for handcuffed women to pull up the tubers.

“Provided you don’t mind them raw,” said Rachel. “We won’t have any fuel for cooking.”

Kirsty was silent. They were all worried. It was not like being at home in the community. This was a new venture, an outpost, over a hundred kilometres from their original home. And it was an outpost that had, for the moment, been left solely to the women. The team of men that was meant to visit weekly to see to provisions, security and any other issues with which naked, handcuffed girls could not deal, was overdue. Several days overdue.

And the firewood was running out, and there was no more anywhere within the range of a woman shackled to the girl-rails.

* * *

Jonathan watched the girls in his telescope, and could not help focusing in more closely on the triangle of blonde hair between Kirsty’s thighs. God, he wanted her. It took all his strength to stay still, hidden behind the bushes.

“What are they doing?” said Simon, crouched behind him.

“Heading in to their quarters,” replied the first man, who was about thirty-five, with wavy fairish hair and a clean look about him. As he spoke the two nude women turned and followed their girl-rail towards the single-storey structure that was their shelter and living quarters.

“No sign of escape attempts yet?”

“No, not at all, they seem quite happy.” In truth it had always amazed Jonathan how casually the women of The Settlement seemed to accept their bondage. They seemed perfectly adapted to a life imprisoned on the girl-rails. Not that they had any choice in the matter.

“How long before we go down there, now?” he asked. “They have to be worried.”

“You know what was decided,” answered Simon, who was a good ten years older than his companion, dark and chiselled: “we wait till they seem really desperate. Sooner or later they have to start thinking of breaking away from the girl-rails. We need to see how the system holds up, when there are no men around.”

“Hmm,” replied Jonathan, uneasy. He refocused the telescope, catching a last close-up of Kirsty’s shapely backside as she disappeared into the quarters.

* * *

Following the blonde girl into the quarters, Rachel leaned back against the door, shutting it against the gathering gloom outside. She looked around: the other four girls who shared their outpost were already within. It was quite dark: there was no electricity here, unlike back home in the main community, and the only lighting was from long-lasting oil lamps, which were mounted quite high on the walls and could be serviced only by the men when they visited. But apart from that their shelter was quite comfortable: good beds, cushions to kneel on, a fire, catering facilities with running water from a nearby spring. In the context of a world in which environmental disaster had destroyed most of human civilisation, it was a luxurious place to live: provided of course one did not mind having to live there naked and in chains.

And on the whole, of course, the girls did not mind – as Jonathan thought, they were adapted to it. They had been brought up post-apocalypse, in a community where the female form, whatever its precise size, shape, age or colour, was appreciated as a thing of beauty, to be displayed, not covered, and where the female person was regarded as a thing of far too much value to be left without the protection of tight security. Thus, all these girls had lived their whole adult lives nude, with their feet chained together and with a steel collar locked closely around their necks, by means of which they were permanently anchored to the girl-rails; they had also always been used to having their hands cuffed safely behind them, saving only when they had been closely supervised by men. And whilst, of course, they sometimes found this bondage frustrating, it was really just a feature of female life, a feature with which, since they were all in the same situation and their community had been set up to enable them to live as they did, they found little difficulty in coping. A feature for which, most of the time, they were grateful, since it was a clear token of their community’s care of and appreciation of them as women.

Rachel was glad to see that there was some food left: finely chopped stewed vegetables, placed on the floor in wooden bowls, from which a girl could easily eat, notwithstanding that her hands remained helplessly fastened behind her back. Kneeling, knees apart in the manner of Settlement girls, she tucked in, skilfully ensuring that her neck chain did not upset the bowls. As she finished, licking the bowl and her lips clean, Blanca, the senior girl in the outpost, chivvied her on: “Come on, 567, bed time.” All the girls had numbers, which was their formal way of address in the community.

“Of course, Ma’am,” replied Rachel, looking up at her superior. Blanca was perhaps forty years old, a veteran of many years imprisoned on The Settlement’s girl-rails, but nevertheless someone old enough to have experienced life before – before the end of the world. Unlike Rachel and the other younger ones, Blanca had once worn clothes, once been free to go where she wanted, just like a man. Rachel sometimes wondered what that must have been like.

The younger girl, stood, her chains rattling with their accustomed sound, and made her way around the girl-rails to the sleeping area, which was separated from the main part of the shelter by a screen of bars. Back home, sleeping in a properly secured cage was standard practice for women, unless a man invited you into his bed. In this place, being locked in a cage at night was the one aspect of female security that had had to be relaxed – there had to be some way of getting out again in the morning, without a man to unlock the door. So here the girls had a sleeping cage with a lock that could be opened from the inside, the key for which was fastened, by means of a padlock, to Blanca’s neck chain, a few centimetres below her collar. The senior girl thus had to be there to open the cage door in the morning – but she needed another girl to help her, for the key, of course, was well out of the reach of her own shackled hands. It was an improvised security arrangement, not the same as being kept caged by men, but it worked pretty well – certainly none of the girls was able to go wandering off in the night.

Despite her worries, Rachel was soon asleep, but Blanca was not. She had so far, she thought, hid it from the other five women, her charges, all of whom were younger, but she was seriously concerned. She propped herself on her cuffed hands, and looked down at her neck chain glinting in the dim light. The bond should, she knew, be a source of comfort to her, as it had been over the years. But that was in a community where there were lots of men to supervise her, to look after her. Now it was different. They were women alone, she was in charge, and she was still helplessly chained. She resented the bond more and more each day that the men did not come. What if they never came back? If there had been an accident, or something? They would be left here. There was already little fuel left, and the oil in the lamps would run out. What if the water system failed? They would not be able to fix it.

Something had to be done, and as she was the senior, it was she that must initiate it. They, or some of them at least, had to get free of the girl-rails and get help. Of course the rails were supposed to be inescapable, but that, too, was back home, where there were men to supervise. Here the women could take their time, find a weakness. There had to be a way. Otherwise they would die.

* * *

Two further days past, in which Jonathan, concealed in the men’s hideout half a mile away, observed no sign of anything untoward. The girls came out in the mornings, tended their fields, weeding and harvesting food with their cuffed hands as they had always done. They chatted and smiled. They moved patiently around their girl-rail system. There was no sign that any of them had any thoughts of breaking free, no sign of any of them trying to cover their bodies, nothing disrespectful at all. Just Settlement girls, getting on with their lives, nude and shackled as women should be. The only sign of anything remotely amiss was that the women were obviously keeping watch on the approach road – a sensible enough precaution anyway, but you could tell, looking at them, that they watched with anxious expectancy.

“I almost wish they would try something,” said Jonathan, once again staring through the telescope at Kirsty’s blonde muff.

“You just want to go down their and fuck 498,” laughed Simon. 498 was Kirsty’s number, the only identity by which the men knew her. “Here, give me the telescope.”

Simon took the glass and put it to his eye. He was of course by no means immune from the temptation just to examine the women’s flesh – after all, frequent, frank examination of women’s naked bodies was one of the advantages of The Settlement’s new way of life. But he was perhaps more focused than the younger man on the task in hand, and he examined each girl carefully, trying to judge what she was thinking.

At last it occurred to him, what was suspicious. The women were moving all over the girl-rails, and they were looking down. Down at the rails. Settlement women did not need to look down at the girl-rails that confined them – they were too used to living on the system for that. These women were examining the system, looking for weaknesses. They were thinking of escape.

Simon bent closer to the telescope, watching intently, no longer considering the curves of naked female flesh. They were definitely looking for faults in the girl-rails. It was obvious. Still looking, the man smiled to himself. Of course it was, on the face of it, an act of disrespect: a Settlement’s girl should be grateful for her bondage, not try to defeat it, but you had, thought the man, to admire their spirit. They had been left, or so they thought, alone. It was only sensible of them, under those circumstances, to think of breaking free. It was what he himself would have done, in their position.

It was just as well, Simon reflected, that the outpost’s girl-rail system had no weaknesses for the women to find: having installed and checked the girl-rails himself, the man was quite confident of this. None of the women would be able to escape, it was just a question of how, what and when they might try.

* * *

Inside their shelter, the six women knelt, backs straight, thighs spread widely apart, the respectful pose expected of a Settlement girl, since it gave a man a clear view of their feminine intimacies. There were still no men, but the posture was so ingrained in the women’s psyche that none of them thought for a moment of sitting any other way.

“Well,” said Blanca, her anxiety now plain to see, “what have we found?”

“It’s possible we could erode the concrete,” said Sinead, a tall brunette. “We could use spoons and knives from the kitchen, or the farm tools. But it would take weeks.”

“The best bet has to be the entrance bolt,” said Katie, a slight, blonde girl. “That has to be a weakness.” The entrance bolt was where the girls had been first added to the rail system on arrival at the outpost. It was a clever arrangement: back home, a truck had been fitted with its own length of girl rail, with another, separate part, which had been fastened between the main community’s rail system and the truck. At the outpost the situation was reversed to allow the girls out of the truck. So, there had not been a moment when they were not shackled to girl-rails of some sort. But of course, the ends of the rails where the truck was connected were now bolted off with solid bars of steel, padlocked securely across the rails. It might theoretically be a weak point, but it was hard to see how it made any difference to naked, handcuffed women who had no access to useful tools.

“What do you think, 567?” asked Blanca. Even she had begun to recognize Rachel’s natural qualities of leadership. The other girls all looked to the youngster for advice.

“The bolts have no weakness,” was her response. “Unless you can cut metal, and we can’t do that. Even if we had a file or something it would take us years. The locks can’t be picked either. And even if we did break the concrete, it would do no good. The rails are closed steel sections, even at the ends. We might get them a bit loose, but we would still be attached to them. Again, we would need to cut the metal.”

“So what are we going to do? How are we going to escape?” Blanca heaved at her handcuffs as she spoke, the words coming out almost as a sob.

“We aren’t,” said Rachel, matter-of-factly.

“Oh, come on, Rachel,” said Sinead, glancing anxiously at Blanca, who looked suddenly utterly dejected. “You are just being defeatist.”

“No I’m not,” said the young brunette. “I’m being realistic. Think about it. The Settlement has kept its women chained up for over a decade now. Over that time, the security systems have evolved to perfection. The fact that the men aren’t actually here makes no difference. We’re not intended to get free of the girl-rails, and we’re not going to. Not now, not ever.”

There was silence, broken by the small noises of women fidgeting in their chains. At last Kirsty spoke: “What about our handcuffs?” she said. “It would be easier if we had our hands free. Do you think there is any way we could break out of those?”

“Well, what do you think?” replied Rachel, feeling the familiar clasp of steel on her own wrists.

Again there was no response.

* * *

“What are they doing now?” asked Jonathan. “Is there a problem?”

“Here,” said Simon. “Look for yourself. They seem to be checking the water system.”

Jonathan was rewarded with a fine view of Kirsty’s backside as she bent over the access chamber that guarded the spring. The girl teetered a little further, moving her shackled arms to help her gain balance, peering downwards, her cunt nicely displayed to the watching man. Once again, Jonathan wished he could just go down and see her.

* * *

“I see what you mean,” Kirsty said, after a while. She knelt back down, and tossed her long blonde hair to get it out of her eyes. “But we can’t get in, our chains don’t reach.”

“I know that,” said Rachel, who was fully aware of exactly how much freedom her bonds did and didn’t give her. “But there is nothing to fix, is there? It’s just stone blocks. We just make sure it’s covered over, and keep as many pots full as we can in case it blocks up or something.” At least, she thought, it would not freeze It was always hot, all year, thanks to the way the world had changed. Which brought her to another thought: “Now, let’s see how our potato tops are drying.”

The two naked girls followed their rail around the back of the shelter to where they had gathered an enormous pile of vegetation, and left it in the sun to dry. Some of the earliest material was now crisp.

“Good,” said Rachel, “add it to the moulds.” There had been some stone blocks left lying around, and they had made rectangular moulds into which they were pressing some of their plentiful supply of now dried vegetation. After a few days weighted down in the mould, a little brick of vegetation was formed, which, they had discovered, would smoulder well, and make enough heat to boil potatoes. It did not solve the problem of the lighting, which was now almost all gone, but they could manage without that.

Each female grabbed a fuel brick with their cuffed hands and carried them inside, laying them on the pile by the stove. Sinead was in charge of it, making sure it did not go out, a task they took in shifts.

“How is she?” asked Rachel, glancing to where Blanca lay asleep in the cage.

“The same,” shrugged Sinead. “Still convinced we are going to die. We won’t though, will we?”

“Not yet!” smiled Rachel.

* * *

Jonathan watched Number 567 closely. It was obvious to both men that she had assumed leadership of the little group of women, and of course she was well worth watching anyway. But it was equally clear that the women had solved their immediate problems, and were giving no further thought to the concept of breaking free. They had reverted to their usual mode of living, with its matter-of-fact acceptance of their permanent and inescapable bondage. A minor concern was the senior, Number 199: she had only been seen once or twice in the last three days, and she did not look well, but she was still alive, or had been yesterday.

They had discussed ending the experiment, going down there, but Simon had in the end decided to leave it still longer. “It’s fascinating,” he had added, “watching what they do.”

* * *

It was Kirsty’s turn to keep watch on the approach road, and she knelt patiently on the little grassy hillock that gave the best view. They still hoped that the men would come, and not, the blonde girl reflected, solely because of the firewood or lighting issues. She looked down at herself, at the blonde triangle of soft hair between her legs. After all these weeks, it was an area ached for attention. Sadly the young woman twisted at her handcuffs. Settlement wrist restraints were, however, designed to keep their wearers respectful, and among other things, that meant ensuring that a girl could never reach to touch her own intimate parts, those areas being, according to the community’s way of thinking, provided for the exclusive use of men.

What, thought Kirsty, was a girl to do? She could ask Rachel; she had thought of doing so for several days now, though girl-girl action was also of course disrespectful, and risked severe punishment, so she had not dared do so. Besides, Rachel might not agree: like all Settlement girls, the brunette knew she had a responsibility for upholding the rules, after all.

Kirsty sighed. There were other things a girl could do – perhaps not so satisfying, but helpful none the less.

* * *

“Wow,” said Jonathan, feeling the surge in his pants. “Did you ever see the like of that? That has to be disrespect!”

Taking the telescope, Simon focused it on the naked blonde. She still knelt, but by dint of a great amount of shuffling around on her knees, she had managed to manoeuvre her neck chain so that it passed back between her legs, to where she could grab it with her manacled hands. This, naturally, gave her leverage to pull the chain against her, in an intimate place. Of course, from her perspective, it was by no means perfect: the metal was cold and hard, and what she wanted was something warm and hard. But it was better than nothing, and she found that she could, by dint of careful manipulation of the bond, give herself considerable pleasant stimulation.

Watching her, Simon smiled. He had been in The Settlement a long time, and was well aware of what sex-starved women got up to. Yes, it was disrespectful, but there were so many more women than men now that one had to be a little lenient sometimes. And he had not yet seen a girl make herself come in this way – the chain was just not sensitive enough to do that. “I wouldn’t worry,” he said to Jonathan. “Let it go.”

“Let me look!” cried the younger man, his pants still feeling very tight at the front. Simon held on to the spy glass for a minute, teasing his companion, but eventually passed it back, so that Jonathan could continue to enjoy the sight of the naked, shackled blonde to whom he had clearly taken a fancy. “Surely we should go and stop it?” said Jonathan, glued to the vision. God, he wanted that girl. He wanted any girl really – it had been over two weeks now, and doing without sex for more than a few hours was not something men in The Settlement were usually required to do.

The two men took it in turns to watch until the blonde girl collapsed in frustrated exhaustion, her cunt soaking wet, but now even more desperate for the right sort of stimulation than it was before. Then, smiling at his companion, Simon spoke: “Perhaps you are right, Jono,” he said. “Perhaps this has gone on long enough.”

* * *

Rachel woke at first light, and lay still for a moment, listening, wondering what the day would bring. Another day of helpless imprisonment. But today, she felt something was different. She did not quite know what. She watched the shadows cast by the bars on the wall of their sleeping cage, and then turned to look out into the main area of the shelter.

“Sir!, Sir! Thank God you’ve come! Wake up everyone!” In a moment, Rachel was pressed against the bars, grinning from ear to hear, whilst Jonathan and Simon sat calmly, cross legged on the floor beyond. In a minute they had all six girls to admire.

“Sorry,” dissembled Simon. “The truck broke down in the bush; we had to walk for days. You are all OK?”

“Yes, Sir, of course!” said Rachel, though she could not help glancing at Blanca, who stared at the men blankly. “Sir, open the cage please!” It was not proper for the girls to do it themselves with men present, even though they could.

* * *

“You must have been scared, though, here all alone, in chains?” asked Simon a little later, as he walked around the outpost with Rachel.

“Not really Sir,” she replied. “Well, a little concerned. But as you can see, we managed. We are Settlement girls. We are brought up to manage,”

“And you really didn’t try and escape from the girl-rails?” the man quizzed, curious as to how the young woman would react.

“How would we have done that, Sir?” was her answer. She looked at him innocently, her long lashes fluttering: “Is there a problem with the security of the system?” she said, sweetly. “We have not noticed it.”

“No, no, of course not,” said Simon, finding himself entranced with the naked girl’s beauty – her helpless beauty. “It’s perfectly secure. As you say, quite inescapable. Would you like to fuck?”

“Yes, please, Sir, that would be nice.”

* * *

“Springs and waterfalls, Sir,” groaned Kirsty, “that is so gooood…” She lay on her back on the grass, her cuffed hands thrust to the side to avoid the discomfort of them pressing against her spine. Jonathan was plumbing her mercilessly, pausing just occasionally to eat her breasts, or to dig his fingers into her rump. She had come ten times already, but thankfully the man showed no sign of stopping. He knew how to treat a lady with respect. And he certainly had the equipment.

From the corner of her eye, Kirsty saw Katie and Sinead, waiting, hoping for a turn. Well they would have to wait. She was a long way from finished with Jonathan yet.

The End