by Nosbert


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CHAPTER NINE - Dominatrix


Monday morning saw me alone and travelling by train to London: And if you’re wondering how I managed to get away from Sandy and Anthea, then let me tell you it wasn’t easy. If going to Hendry’s in the first instance had proved a simple task, then organising a follow-up visit turned out to be a complete nightmare.

The fact that I was in Birmingham with Sandy, and Anthea was back at my cottage in Lower Clunley was just the start of my problems. Having explained to them that it was my wish to return to Hendry’s, then both girls immediately insisted on coming with me. Obviously I raised objections. What I didn’t want to happen was for me to drive all the way back to Shropshire then set off immediately afterwards for London. As far as I was concerned that suggestion was completely out of the question since it would lose me a complete day. Furthermore, and if the truth be known, I much preferred to go to London on my own and without the hindrance of two women clicking at my heels.

In the end, and after several long and exasperating phone conversations, we reached a compromise. It went something like this: I would head for London by train whilst Sandy took my car to collect Anthea. They would stay at my cottage on the Monday night and travel down on the Tuesday morning. We would then all meet up again at a London hotel later that day.

So with this plan finally agreed, Sandy dropped me off outside Birmingham New Street Station early on Monday morning, she then headed off to collect Anthea. As I waved goodbye from the station and watched Sandy kangaroo hop out into the speeding Bull Ring traffic, I just prayed my car would still be in one piece when I saw it again.

As I travelled south by train, alone and in first class comfort, I reflected on the fact that exactly one week had elapsed since I stumbled across Fatima in that Wimbledon garage. I was wondering if she’d ever been traced? To be quite honest I wasn’t holding out much hope. The only scenario I could envisage was seeing a naked body lying on a mortuary slab with someone performing an autopsy on some unknown girl fished out of the Thames.

On the other hand I tried to think positively. There was always the remote possibility that Mr. Big had been found and I was simply wasting my time. But somehow, after judging the competence of the opposition, I doubted whether there had been any movement forward whatsoever.


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At sometime around midday I arrived at London Euston Station. I then got a taxi to take me straight to Hendry’s: The journey from the station taking something like thirty minutes. I got the taxi to drop me off a little way down the road from the club and called in at a small family run hotel on a corner. It was called ‘The Elms’ and there were trees in front of the house. But I doubted whether they were elms. I gather something called ‘Dutch Elm Disease’ wiped out most of the trees, and this lot looked healthy enough.

The hotel was a large converted house in its own grounds, much on the lines of Hendry’s a little further down the road. At most it had about a dozen rooms. What I was looking for were two rooms with an adjoining door in order to accommodate the three of us, but I was told this was just a small guest house and nothing like that existed. In the end I settled for a single room and a double room that faced each other across the corridor. I explained that it was my wife and her sister that would be along sometime tomorrow and, not knowing how long we intended to stay, I booked the single room for four nights and the double room for three starting from tomorrow.

Having deposited my overnight travel bag in the single room, I took a quick shower then made a couple of phone calls. I rang Hendry’s first and, as expected got no reply. At something like one o’clock on a Monday afternoon it was a fair bet that no one would be there, and that was exactly what I was hoping for. I had plans for a quiet visit of my own as soon as my next phone call was made.

Next I made contact with Fernando on his mobile. He answered after several rings. “Hi Fernando, Woody here,” I told him and trying to sound cheerful.

“Woody!… where are you this time?… still in Scotland?” he asked.

I gave a wry smile. At this point in time I did not want to reveal that I was no more than half a mile from Hendry’s. “No, I’m back down south,” I said and left it at that.

Luckily he didn’t push the issue any further. He asked: “Well Woody, what can I do for you? Are you still interested in that ten thousand pounds?”

To be truthful I could envisage problems if I took on the case officially. I did not know where my loyalties lay. Even Fernando was not above suspicion. It was my own curiosity and independence that was driving me on, and I wanted to keep it that way, at least for the time being anyway. “Sorry Fernando, I’m not interested in taking on the case or doing it for the money,” I told him flatly, then went on to ask: “What I was wondering was, have you found Fatima yet?”

There was silence and for a few seconds I feared the worse. “No, sorry Woody, I’m afraid our investigations are leading us nowhere. The trail went cold after locating the Wimbledon address and we’ve got nothing on the person who rented the property either. However, we believe him to be French. We got that from the owner who leased out the property in the first place. Apparently it was all done over the phone, and it was a voice with a French accent on the other end of the line. We traced the call, the origin was Paris, so Pierre’s returned to France to check it out. He’s also making a few discreet enquiries into the activities of a number of shipping agents over there.”

My main concern lay with Fatima, and I found comfort from the fact that they hadn’t as yet found a body floating in the Thames. I guess no news was good news. But somehow I doubted it. I knew these people. Concrete boots were a very efficient way of keeping the body on the river bed and fish would do the rest. As for Pierre returning to France, the explanation sounded logical and, at the time, I thought little more about it. However, whilst I had Fernando on the phone there were still a couple of things that interested me. To begin with I was curious to learn the latest news regarding the murder victim found in the gardens to the rear of the house. “What about the body found out the back of the house?” I asked. “Any more news on that front?”

Fernando tutted before speaking. “Again Woody we’ve drawn a blank I’m afraid,” he apologised. “The police have just completed a fingertip search of the grounds and come up with no fresh evidence. However, I think we can safely say that the man was a loner and not connected with any organised crime, especially when it comes to trafficking in illegal immigrants. This man was just a petty thief, a blackmailer, and a small time crook.”

I gave another wry smile. I didn’t like to tell him I’d taken away most of the evidence the police were looking for. I had removed a cufflink, a chloroform soaked pad and all Fatima’s clothes from the scene of the crime. I thought it best not to tell him I’d been a naughty boy. There was one final thing I wanted to know, and that concerned Anthea and her share in the syndicate that owned Hendry’s and five other clubs. I was curious to learn just how much Fernando knew about a certain Claude Villeneuve, one of the syndicate’s shareholders. But I didn’t want to put that name to him directly, so I tried to be devious. “One more question Fernando. Tell me, do you know the names of all the shareholders in the syndicate that owns Hendry’s? You told me about Anthea owning twenty-five percent, I was wondering if you knew who held the remaining seventy-five?”

There was hesitation. I could detect Fernando taking time in collecting his thoughts. “Not offhand Woody,” he told me after much thought. “Why do you ask?”

It was my turn to hesitate. To be quite honest I wasn’t expecting a question to be answered by another question. “Oh, I was just wondering how much she was worth and whether anyone was willing to buy out her twenty-five percent?” I gave as the excuse.

Again there was a delay. “Sorry Woody, I can’t help you,” the Spaniard replied eventually.

I was curious. It seemed to me Fernando was hiding something. At least it appeared that way. It seemed inconceivable to me that Fernando would be aware of Anthea’s twenty-five percent share in the business, yet know nothing about the other seventy-five. I decided to put a rapid end to the conversation before I gave too much away. I guess it was my own fault. Trying to be devious was never one of my strong points. “Never mind Fernando, I was just curious. See you around sometime, bye,” I said and switched off my mobile before he could get another word in.


                                                          * * *


Half an hour later I was stood on the pavement outside Hendry’s, and I had a problem. The place wasn’t deserted as I had hoped. A beer wagon was in the driveway and two men were unloading crates and barrels. I guess I should have anticipated this. With the bar doing a roaring trade, especially at weekends, stocks had to be replenished, and Monday afternoons seemed the best time to restock the shelves.

I weighed up my options. I could go away and come back later, or I could use the opportunity to gain access to the building. At least the front doors were unlocked and I could walk straight inside. I also assumed that someone from the club would be in attendance. Someone must have opened the doors for the tradesmen, and that person could even be Hulk. There was a lone car parked in the drive. I was unaware of the owner, but it obviously belonged to whomever had opened up the doors for the delivery men.

I decided to show my face. After all I had nothing to lose and plenty to gain. There were two things I wanted to check out. Firstly the telephone in the foyer. I wanted to know what numbers were programmed into that memory: And secondly I felt that I ought to take a quick look at the murder scene behind the house. I didn’t expect to find anything fresh, but knowledge of the layout would go a little way into helping me piece together what really happened. If you recall I still had those missing fifteen minutes to account for, and until I did so, this case was never going to be solved.

Having made a positive decision I set off down the long arcing gravel drive. I reached the front doors to the big house and waited for a man to roll a heavy barrel past my toes. I then followed him into the foyer. “Lovely weather,” the man told me as he rolled the barrel towards the corridor that led to the bar.

I’d not noticed so I looked outside. At that moment the sun came out from behind a cloud so I agreed with him. “Yes it is,” I told him then hung around for the man to disappear down the corridor.

I looked around. The coast was clear and I moved to the phone. I was hoping to find some sort of identification. Labels that said ‘Bar’ and ‘Changing Room’ and that sort of thing. But all I could see were four memory buttons. I decided the only way I was going to find out was to give them all a try, so I lifted the receiver.

It was then a finger poked me in the ribs just below the armpit. “Who do you want?” asked a female voice.

I turned with receiver in my hand to see one of the barmaids standing by my side. Now I want you to think back to the time when I first visited Hendry’s. That was over a week ago now. I told you then that there were two girls serving behind the bar. Their names were Claudette and Sadie. I think at the time I told you all about Claudette when extolling the virtues of her two outstanding assets. Well I’m sorry to disappoint you, but this was the other barmaid; this was Sadie.

Sadie was tall, approaching six feet, with long dark hair tied back in a ponytail. She was dressed in a white blouse, a navy blue skirt that came down to just above the knees, and knee-length black leather boots. I could see now why she looked so tall: The heels of the boots were a good six inches in length. In addition, Sadie wore thick black-rimmed spectacles and exhumed an air of self confidence. I had visions of her being a dominatrix in her spare time and not a submissive which was the recognised trait of most females associated with this club.

As Sadie stood there waiting for my answer, with pointed finger raised and ready to poke me sharply in the ribs a second time, I tried rapidly to think up an acceptable answer. “Err… I’m looking for Fernando,” I told her, and that, I’m afraid, was the best excuse I could come up with in such a short time.

Sadie peered at me over her the top of her thick-rimmed spectacles with a certain amount of disdain. “Fernando’s not here, and he won’t be in until later tonight,” she told me with no uncertainty.

Being caught wrong footed I realised that I had to worm my way out of the awkward situation I now found myself in. The way I saw it, I had two choices. I could either say that I was very sorry and suggest I return later, or I could think up a reasonable excuse to stick around and try to gain the young girl’s confidence. I looked to the pointing finger. It was still ominously straight and now poised and aiming for the centre of my chest. I changed my vision of Sadie from dominatrix to school mistress. I could see her now, stood in front of the class; I was the naughty little boy called to the front and about to be reproved for some petty misdemeanour. She was about to tell me to turn round, bend over and pull down my pants. I think the least I could expect was six of the best.

I tried to shake away this playful vision and collect my thoughts. I think it was the way I was taken completely by surprise that shook me. I’d been caught literally ‘over a barrel’. I couldn’t say for certain where Sadie sprang from. All I could surmise was that either, she’d just got beamed down from the Starship Enterprise, or, most likely, came travelling at high speed from the direction of the corridor. But no matter by whatever means she’d arrived, I knew that I had to think up something, and do it fast. My mind flashed back and forth between two recent events. One was my visit to ‘The Pilliwinks’ in Dundee and the other, my recent conversation with Fernando. Thinking of nothing better to say, I decided to play the Financial Advisor card once more. “I’m here on behalf of Miss Anthea Hamilton,” I told her. “She’s a major shareholder in this club. I’m her Financial Advisor and I’m here to check out a few things. I was hoping to see Fernando and go over a few details with him.”

I saw the pointed finger wither, or at least curl down a little. I could see that my answer had at least set Sadie thinking. However, she raised an eyebrow as if still in doubt as to my excuse for being there. “Have you spoken to Fernando? Does he know about this? Is he expecting you?” she asked and rattling off a series of questions.

I nodded my head to all three. “Yes, I’ve not long spoken to him on his mobile. I assumed him to be here, but obviously I was mistaken,” I replied.

The eyebrow raised a little higher above her thick rimmed spectacles. I could see that she was still puzzling over my presence. I got the impression I wasn’t making complete sense. “You’re not Mr. Woods are you?” she asked quizzically.

I must admit I was taken completely by surprise. I’d been rumbled. I think my mouth dropped. I nodded my head. There was no point denying it, not if I was to be seen here with Fernando at some later date. “Yes I am,” I confirmed. “I’m Mr. Woods.”

Sadie relaxed, retracted her accusing finger and smiled. “Then why didn’t you say so in the first place Mr Woods?” she exclaimed. “Fernando said I was to let you in if you turned up at any time.”

I must admit I was completely thrown by the quick change around in events. But on further reflection I was not too surprised. Thinking back, I’d received the same reaction from Hulk when I first approached him. Obviously Fernando had told all his staff to be on the look-out for a Mr Woods, and, if he ever did show his face, then he was to be allowed complete freedom of the premises.

Having sorted that little lot out, and with the conclusion that I was a good guy after all, my perception of Sadie changed somewhat. She was no longer the dominatrix poised to beat the shit out of me. She was just a pleasant young lady, in her early twenties, with pretty smiling face and curves all in the right places.

I was just about to suggest that she carry on with her duties and let me resume my snooping, when a second wagon pulled up behind the first. This time it was a white Ford Transit van. There was a name on the side and suddenly I was full of interest. The name read; ‘Europa Container Transport’. I recalled where I’d seen that name before. It was on a similar van parked out back of the Pilliwinks Club in Dundee. It wasn’t the same van; this one had a London telephone number on the side; but it did set me thinking. Somehow I felt this to be more than coincidence.

As the van came to a halt, Sadie spun round to stare out through the open double doors. She expelled an icy breath, opened out her legs, gripped her hands in anger, then, with elbows pointed outwards, thrust her clenched fists hard against the sides of her slender waist. Suddenly my initial vision of her returned. Once more she was the stern dominatrix and poised to lay unmercifully into some other naughty little boy. This time it was the van driver. I breathed a sigh of relief. At least on this occasion it was someone else about to feel the lash of her tongue, and at best suffer the ignominy of a rigid forefinger thrust deep into the ribs. “Oh shit!,” she swore most unladylike, ”I’d forgotten all about them turning up today!”

She then turned to me. I didn’t know what to say or do. I simply shrugged my shoulders and opened out my hands in sympathy. “Excuse me Mr. Woods, but I have to deal with this,” she told me. “Why don’t you go to the bar and wait for me there?”

I wanted to suggest I stay exactly where I was. I still had four memory buttons on the telephone to check out. But Sadie’s icy cold stare suggested otherwise and I thought it best to do as I was told. For the time being I considered it best to go along with her wishes, at least until we got to know each other a little better. Feeling like that naughty schoolboy I envisaged earlier, I submitted to her demands and bowed my head. “I’ll wait in the bar then,” I said humbly, then turned and, with my tail between my legs, set off down the long corridor.

As I reached the door to the bar, one of the workmen came out rolling a large wooden barrel before him. “That’s the lot now sir, see you next Monday,” he chirped as the barrel ran over one foot.

But at least the barrel was empty and did little crushing damage. Well, not much anyway. Nothing that a week on crutches wouldn’t cure. I jumped back, stopped myself from squealing, then hopped about on one foot. Somehow I managed to nod my head. “Yes, see you next Monday,” I told him through clenched teeth, then hopped and hobbled through the door into the bar.

The large room was deserted, in semi-darkness and smelt of stale beer. A couple of curtains were open and these, along with the glow of the security monitors positioned behind the bar, were the only sources of light. There was movement coming from at least one of the screens. I could see intermittent flashes of light and shade reflecting off the drinking glasses and optics behind the bar.

I must admit I hung around for a while, touching nothing and simply standing with my hands in my pockets. I even tried to whistle a little tune, but through clenched teeth not a lot happened. Eventually I realised that I would feel a whole lot more comfortable if I sat down and got to ease my aching foot, so I hobbled across to the bar. I climbed up on one of the high stools and rested my elbows on the counter. To be truthful I didn’t want to get caught out again by Sadie and I had no idea when the she-devil would return.

After a while I began to tell myself I was being foolish. I was thinking; surely Sadie couldn’t be the ogre I made her out to be, and since she now knew my true identity, what was I being scared off?

Anyway, it didn’t work. I reckoned that what I really needed was a stiff drink. I looked behind the bar. The optics appeared inviting, especially the large Bell’s whisky bottle sat amongst them. I decided to pour myself a little drink whilst I waited. I could see no harm in that, especially if I paid, so I dropped down off my stool. The flap on the counter was raised so I hopped on my one good foot behind the bar. I found a whisky glass and filled it with two shots from an optic. I then looked for ice, but there was none, the ice buckets were empty, so I decided to drink the stuff neat. My final act was to leave a twenty pound note on the till where it could be seen.

Considering myself free from retribution, my attention turned to the flickering security monitors. This was the first chance I’d had to see them properly. Previously I’d always been stood over on the other side of the bar and unable to see exactly what security was involved.

In all there were eight screens. They were all fairly small and set in two rows of four, one row above the other, and they were all in black and white. A video recorder lay alongside, but the single red stand-by light suggested that nothing was being recorded. On closer inspection I discovered that there wasn’t even a tape in the machine which basically confirmed my theory. I concluded that these monitors were simply a visual aid to what was going on both inside and outside the building and the recorder only used on rare occasions.

I studied more closely. The top four monitors were telling me what was happening outside the building. The cameras were positioned to the front, back and two sides of the house. The bottom four were from cameras installed within the house. From left to right I could see what was happening in the foyer, the corridor out back, the dungeon and a bedroom. I assumed the bedroom to be upstairs somewhere, but had my doubts about the security aspects of this final camera.

All the action was taking place from the camera out front. I could see a white van parked and a beer wagon pulling away. I watched the beer wagon disappear down the drive, then, not long afterwards, saw movement from the white van. But it didn’t move forwards as expected. Instead it began to reverse with Sadie directing the vehicle backwards. It then turned and reversed down one side of the house. My focus immediately turned to the adjoining screen and I watched as the van reversed to the end of the gravelled area and stopped. The back of the van was now facing the lawns and gardens to the rear of the building.

What I was witnessing proved most interesting and I supped my whisky as I continued to follow the action. At least I felt safe in the knowledge that from where I stood it was impossible for Sadie to spring any fresh surprises. I had her covered all the way. There was also something else I concluded. I was pretty sure that I now knew how she’d managed to rumble me so easily. She must have seen me step uninvited into the foyer, wonder who I was and what I was doing, and be onto me straightaway.

My attention returned to the action. Two men stepped out of the van and one of them opened up the rear doors. With Sadie looking on, a large oblong wooden packing crate got unloaded. The men then proceeded to pick up the crate and carry it along the gravel path that ran along the back of the house. The crate looked solid and heavy and needed the two men to carry it. At this point my eyes moved to the third monitor to follow their progress.

The little procession came to a halt outside the emergency door to the rear of the house. This was the very door I’d found Fernando lying against and dripping with blood just over a week ago. As the men rested the crate in order to take a quick breather, Sadie opened up the emergency exit with a key. At this point my eyes moved down to the bottom row of monitors. From inside the building it was now possible to watch the emergency door open. My view was looking down the corridor with the Ladies Changing Room to the left and the stairs to the right.

With Sadie leading the way I watched the two men follow her along the short corridor then turn right and disappear down the basement stairs. I then lost them for a couple of minutes. When they did show up again it was in the dungeon. This time the camera was above the door and looking into the chamber. I saw Sadie step into the room followed by the two men carrying the crate. The final resting place was against the wall to the right. The men set it down and slowly straightened their backs.

Eventually the lid was opened and all three peered inside. There appeared a lot to be explained regarding the contents of the crate, at least it looked that way. One of the men seemed to take considerable time pointing and indicating to various objects within the crate. There also appeared to be an instruction handbook involved. The trouble was, the screen was small and all the action taking place close to the very edge, so I had no idea what was in the crate or what subject they were discussing.

With presumably the delicate intricacies of the contents explained, the lid was closed and the little party departed the dungeon. All three returned via the same route, firstly out of the dungeon, then, after a short break, along the ground floor corridor towards the rear of the house. Finally they all trudged along the back path to the awaiting white van where Sadie signed something before waving the men goodbye.

As Sadie moved to the front of the house I tried to refocus my mind. Intrigued as I was about the contents of the crate, I found the very presence of the security monitors, and the details they revealed, far more fascinating.

I reflected on events the night Fatima disappeared. Claudette had been serving in this half of the bar at the time and I knew all the monitors to be switched on. I had seen them working. There was no mistaking the reflection of light issuing from the screens. I also noted that the telephone was over on this side of the bar. Claudette could have answered when Hulk phoned through from the foyer. Immediately that ever recurring French connection theme returned. Claudette was most definitely French. Her accent was the first thing I noticed about her. Suddenly I found myself in a whole new ball game, and I asked myself; could Claudette be involved too?

Of course all this was speculation, and I was not sure how much notice Claudette was making of the screens. After all, she was very busy that night. But it did set me thinking. Especially as regards to the views afforded out back and down the corridor towards the emergency exit. From the camera angles the whole scene of the crime could have been witnessed, starting with Fatima’s abduction, then the murder, and ending with Fernando being bashed on the head. I wondered if the video had been recording that night? However I doubted it, that would be too much to ask, and anyway, would have been picked up by the police.

Deep in thought and with my mind racing off on a fresh track, I followed Sadie’s movements round to the front of the house and enter in through the double doors. Now observing from the camera in the foyer, I watched as she closed up the front doors, looked around, then set off down the corridor presumably to join me in the bar.

I took this as my cue and moved to the front of the bar. Needless to say, I was perched back on my stool as the dominatrix walked into the room.


                                                          * * *


It was obvious Sadie was in a foul mood, so I did not look her in the eyes. Instead I stared hard into my whisky glass and swilled the contents about the sides. It seemed the safest thing to do. The last thing I wanted to do was provoke her any more.

I felt Sadie’s icy breath against my neck and I looked up to see her glaring down at me. “I’m sorry about that Mr. Woods,” she told me, “but the chief bar keeper’s away this week and I’ve been left to do everything on my own.”

This statement I did not expect. I’d assumed Sadie to be the one in charge. “Chief bar keeper?” I queried. “So you’re not normally in charge?”

Sadie screwed up her nose. “No, I’m just part time here,” she snarled. “Claudette’s in charge when she’s around.”

I was going to say something to the effect; ‘not the French girl with big tits?’, but I moderated my tone. “Claudette? Not around? Where is she then?” I asked.

Sadie snarled and curled up a lip. I was beginning to wish I hadn’t asked the question. “She’s pissed off to France with that new guy,” she growled.

Suddenly I sat upright. This sounded interesting and I wanted to find out more. “Not with err… what’s his name? Err… Pierre?” I put to her.

Sadie nodded her head. “That’s him, the Frenchman,” she griped. “Fernando phoned me over the weekend and asked if I could do the bar on my own all this week. I should have told him where to stick his job.”

I wondered if there was any previous connection between Claudette and Pierre, so I plucked up courage and asked the question. “Did Claudette know Pierre then? Is that why they’ve gone away together?” I put to her.

Sadie shook her head. “No, Claudette took over the job from Fernando three months ago. Pierre only turned up last week and I don’t think they’d met before then,” she explained.

I found this all very interesting, especially the fact that Fernando was involved. The Spaniard had obviously sanctioned Claudette’s trip to France and organised Sadie as the bar relief, and I was beginning to wonder why?  “So you’re in charge and on your own all this week then?” I suggested.

Sadie nodded her head. “That’s right, normally I only do the bar on Saturdays to help out.”

I didn’t really want to know what Sadie did when not serving behind the bar, but to keep the conversation going I asked anyway. “What do you do for the rest of the week then?” I asked.

Sadie’s face turned stern and took up that intimidating stance of hers: The posture with legs slightly apart, protruding elbows and clenched fists thrust hard against her hips. “Didn’t you know? I’m the dominatrix here. I correct naughty boys when I’m not working behind the bar,” she said proudly.

I had to smile. Well wouldn’t you? “Really? That’s something new here isn’t  it?” I remarked.

Sadie nodded her head. “It is,” she confirmed with delight, “it was the first thing Fernando did when he took over, and since then we’ve doubled our membership. The club is now thriving.”

For a moment I felt that warm glow that came with success. I’d got everything about Sadie spot on. She was the club’s full time Miss Whiplash and no doubt very good at her job. I didn’t answer straightaway. I guess I was too busy basking in my own glory. However my lack of response passed the initiative back to Sadie and she immediately took advantage. “Mr. Woods, will you do something for me?” she asked.

It was a simple question, but the tone of the voice wasn’t. Sadie was in dominatrix mode and once more I felt under pressure. I looked up and nodded my head. It seemed more prudent to agree rather than offer excuses. “I’m not exactly doing anything right now,” I replied with a hint of caution.

Sadie simply smiled and I knew immediately that I’d made the wrong decision. I should have thought up some excuse for being busy and made rapidly for the exit. But I didn’t, and now I had to suffer the consequences. “I want you to assemble something for me,” said Sadie, her voice sounding sterner than ever.

I knew what was required without being told. It just had to be that crate down in the basement. It was a flat-pack kit and needed to be put together. “What do you want me to do then?” I asked meekly.

Sadie took a step back. “Follow me,” she ordered, then set off across the room.

I knocked back the last of my whisky, then, like a well trained lap-dog, dropped down off my stool and proceeded to follow the club’s Miss Whiplash across the room. Somehow I got the feeling I’d lost control somewhere along the line.


                                                          * * *


Sadie led me to the dungeon and I was shown the crate. She opened up the lid and pointed to the contents. I peered inside and managed a smile. I’d been right about the flat-pack and found comfort in the fact that I’d not lost all my faculties for logical thinking. The crate was full of flat pieces of wood, all painted in a glossy black. There were also a number of polythene bags containing a vast amount of leather straps.

I was handed an instruction booklet. “It’s a chair and needs to be assembled ready for a party tonight,” Sadie informed me.

I flicked through the pages. “I’ll need a screwdriver,” I told her.

Sadie took up her dominant stance once more; with feet apart and fists on hips. All she needed was a whip and my vision of her would have been complete. “Everything’s in the crate,” she told me. “Just get on with it. I need to get back to the bar.”

I peered into the crate and spotted another polythene bag full of screws and a screwdriver. I retrieved it from inside. I then turned to Sadie, nodded my head and managed a little smile. “Okay, leave it with me,” I told her.

Sadie returned the smile, then spun round and walked away. I waited for Miss Whiplash to disappear through the dungeon’s double doors before turning my attention to the crate. There was something I’d noticed and did not want to do anything about until she had left. On the lid was label. It had the London warehouse address of ‘Europa Container Transport’ printed on the top. There were also two other addresses typed on the label. One was the Paris address the manufacturer, a certain ‘Meubles d’Erotique’. The other was the delivery address which was Hendry’s. I peeled off the label and put it in my pocket. I then took off my coat, loosened my necktie and set to work.

From the instruction booklet the basic construction of the chair looked simple. It was just square in shape with a high back and wide arms. Furthermore the instructions were all laid down in simple steps and easy to follow. Starting from diagram one, I began to slowly piece the chair together.

An hour later, what was initially just a pile of loose timbers, had become my pride and joy. Resting on the floor before me stood a large black wooden chair complete with a vast array of strategically placed leather straps. The straps were on the legs, arms and back of the chair and designed to hold the occupant firmly in place. I had an urge to test it and needed a volunteer, but other than Sadie there was no one else in the building, so I resigned myself to merely visualising a mental picture of a naked girl sitting there, and left it at that.

As I drooled over the prospects of getting either Anthea or Sandy in the chair at some later date, I heard the clicking of heals approaching. I spun round to see Sadie striding in through the double doors and crossing the floor towards me.

Suddenly my jaw dropped and I stood with mouth agape. Sadie had changed her clothes. Now she really was a dominatrix. She was wearing a black laced bodice with frilly red trimmings. From a line just above the nipples she was naked, with bare arms and shoulders. The ponytail had gone and her long dark hair now swung freely from side to side. The knee-length boots were gone too, replaced by high-heeled shoes and fishnet stockings held up by garter straps attached to the bodice. The only thing that remained on her person that I recognised were those black thick-rimmed spectacles, and those were the one thing I found intimidating about her in the first place.

I gave a nervous smile, then stepped aside so that she could get a full view of my handiwork. “Well, what do you think?” I asked.

Sadie nodded her head, then stepped forward and tested one of the straps. “Everything’s solid,” I commented as she walked around the back.

Sadie checked out another strap. This time threading the buckle and pulling on the loop before releasing it again. “Mmmm… very good,” she purred.

I was glad she was pleased. At this point I should have simply collected my jacket and necktie and bid her fond farewells, but unfortunately I opened my big mouth once more. “What we need is someone to test it on,” I suggested, and inferring the guinea pig should be her.

A broad grin spread across Sadie’s face. “Why not?” she agreed. “Let’s give it try.”

I took one step back with the intention of making room for Sadie, but it didn’t quite work out like that. From a position alongside the chair she stalked around to the front and to a point where I found myself stood between her and the chair. She then stepped forward and grabbed hold of the front of my shirt in both hands. “You’re going to try it out for me then?” she purred into my face.

Caught off balance, and with Sadie’s assistance, I found myself sailing backwards towards the chair. I sat down with a plonk. Immediately I tried to get up, but a raised foot caught me in the centre of the chest and pushed me backwards into the chair. The foot then dropped to my genitals and I felt the stiletto heel dig into my balls. I decided it was in my own best interests to remain perfectly still and calm, and I told myself not to panic.

“Just sit still and be a good boy,” Sadie told me as she slowly gyrated her heel deeper into my balls.

I wanted to squeal but I didn’t get a chance. Still with one foot raised and threatening my manhood, a strong hand pushed me back against the chair. Then before I knew it a broad leather strap was being buckled about my forehead. I tried to wriggle out of it, but got rebuked. Sadie tutted, shook her head and gave me a reminding poke from her stiletto heel. “Who’s being a naughty boy then? I told you to sit still,” she said sternly. “You don’t want to upset me do you?”

If I could have shook my head I would have done so. But the strap was firmly in place by now. “No! Sorry! I’ll keep still,” I uttered and at that point surrendered.

Coward I can hear you saying, but honestly, I didn’t really have much choice. The whole of my genitals were being squashed flat and a painful spike penetrated my left testicle. From then on I just shut my eyes and let it happen. Suddenly I felt like a prisoner, and I now knew what it was like to be on the receiving end. It’s funny really, but after all these years of living with Sandy, and then Anthea walking into my life, I’d never had it done to me before.

It was only after my wrists had been firmly strapped to the arms of the chair did the threat to my manhood go away, and by then it was too late. All I could do was sit there and watch as she buckled firstly my ankles and then my thighs to the legs of the chair. The final strap was a big one that crossed my chest and held my upper arms in place. I tried to move some parts of my body but only my fingers and toes responded.

Sadie stepped back and looked down upon me with satisfaction. “Comfortable?” she asked.

I couldn’t nod my head. The best I could do was move my eyes up and down. “Not bad,” I told her. At least I wasn’t in pain now that the foot had gone away.

Sadie circled around me, then arms came around the back and fingertips touched the front of my body. Slowly, button by button, and starting from the top, slender fingers began to open out my shirt. When the hands reached my waist and began to release the buckle of my belt I closed up my eyes. I do believe I was getting a hard on, and I think Sadie noticed this too.

At this point she returned to the front. I looked up and gave a nervous smile. I was at her mercy. Sadie rubbed an open hand across my manhood, then undid the top button of my trousers and pulled down the zipper. I wore underpants beneath, but all the same the bulge was showing. “Would you like a full session? Would you like to see what I do to naughty little boys like you?” she asked as a hand slid gracefully beneath the elastic of my underpants.

As fingers encircled my penis I started to sweat. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me. Suddenly I found myself fighting for my life. Or at least that’s how it seemed to me. “I prefer it the other way round,” I told her straight.

Sadie laughed. “I knew you did! You’re not the type,” she said with chuckle.

I felt the hand tighten and grip my shaft. “I really do prefer it the other way round,” I told her through gritted teeth.

Sadie tutted and shook her head. “Such a pity,” she said with a sigh. “I really did want to test out the chair to the full. But never mind, perhaps I’ll get the chance on someone else tonight.”

As Sadie spoke she released my manhood from the confines of my pants. I looked down. I could see my penis, now fully erect and gripped tightly by one hand. “Perhaps best tested on somebody else,” I agreed.

Sadie shook her head and tutted once more. “Such a pity I can’t do anything for you,” she purred with yet another sigh, “I feel I ought to at least repay you for assembling the chair for me. So what do you suggest I do instead?”

I could see that she was teasing. That hand did not want to let go and was pumping up and down more vigorously now. “Perhaps what you’re doing will repay me handsomely,” I told her between gasps for air.

The hand moved a little faster. “You mean this?” she asked.

I took a deep breath. “I think that will do nicely,” I replied. After that I just settled back and let it all happen. Well what else could I do?  


                                                          * * *


I did get released, eventually, and, once clear of the doors I didn’t look back. I simply scuttled off back to my hotel and to the relative safety of my room. I never did get to checking out that phone. I decided it could wait until Hulk was on the door. I would ask him directly then. Likewise the murder scene out back. I decided that too could wait until some later date.

I didn’t go out that evening. I spent the time lying on my bed and staring at the ceiling. I had a lot on my mind. Mostly it concerned Claudette and Pierre. I kept asking myself about their trip to Paris: Was it simply a result of a budding relationship? Or could there be something much deeper involved? There was also something else. For over an hour I stared at the label I’d taken from the crate until I could memorise every detail backwards. I can’t say why, but I had a nagging feeling that this was the big breakthrough I was looking for.

As midnight arrived I’d made up my mind. Tomorrow I was off to Paris.


End of Chapter Nine