Carolyn Smith and her husband Frank returned home earlier than they had expected. The play rehearsal for their little-theater group had been canceled at the last minute because the director had felt ill.
Carolyn entered her kitchen and heard surprising sounds coming up the basement steps. Music was playing, and a girl or woman was laughing and giggling. Carolyn wondered what could be causing these sounds and immediately became very worried. One obvious possible source could cause a family disaster. Her 18-year-old son Bill couldn’t –
He wouldn’t –
He had to know that he shouldn’t –
But he had.
Carolyn went carefully down those steps and found that the door to the play dungeon was cracked open. Inside, Bill’s pretty dark-haired girlfriend Naomi was stretched taut on the rack, face-down, blindfolded by a large black silk scarf. Her body was covered by an oversized beach towel. Four bare-naked limbs poked out from under that towel toward the padded cuffs that held her wrists and ankles. Bill was seated by the base of the rack, facing away from the door, tickling her feet.
Carolyn screamed “Fraaank!!”
Bill stood up, turned around, and said “Oh rats, my parents have come home. Mom, calm down. Mom, calm down. You have nothing to worry about. Please, I’ll explain, if you let me. You can’t do that. Please.” His mother was trying to reach the control wheel for the rack.
She wouldn’t calm down, saying “Get her outtahere! Get her outtahere! Now! Get her outtahere!!” Carolyn was a small woman, standing only five-feet-four. Bill had recently grown to become a six-footer, and he outweighed his mother by at least fifty pounds. He blocked his mother’s access to the control wheel, and she couldn’t get past him. He fought her off as gently as possible.
The struggle stopped when Bill’s father Frank appeared in the play-dungeon door and said “That’s enough! Bill, I want Naomi off the rack, dressed, and out of here within the next three minutes! Then you will report to the living room. It seems we have a great deal to talk about.”
Naomi intervened. She said “Blackmail! I call blackmail! If you stop Bill now, or punish him later, I will spread the word about this room on Twitter, and Facebook, and Hotmail to everybody I know, and I know a lot of people. Leave us alone now! Go upstairs and wait! Please go now. Please.” Her tone of voice changed sharply at the end of her little speech. Carolyn and Frank had never before heard anybody shift from giving orders angrily to imploring desperately in just four words.
In a serious tone of voice, Bill said “I think that would be best. We will join you in the living room in about twenty minutes and explain everything.” His parents surrendered to the blackmail threat and turned reluctantly toward the door. Then Bill added “One more thing. You should see this before you go.” He peeled the oversize beach towel from Naomi’s body to better reveal her gorgeous feminine curves. Under the towel, she was fully dressed in street clothing, a tank top and tight Bermuda-length shorts. Carolyn had seen her wearing the same outfit several times before.
Bill and Naomi joined his parents in the living room twenty minutes later, just as Bill had said they would. Naomi was still blindfolded. Her hands were behind her back. Bill stayed close behind her, guided her to the couch, and sat down next to her. His parents sat in the chairs on the other side of the room.
Bill said “Let’s begin at the beginning. Naomi, how long have you known that my family is a bit kinky?”
“About two and a half years.” Frank and Carolyn exchanged astonished looks at this piece of news. “It happened at the Christmas party that your folks invited me and my parents to. When it was over, I went into their bedroom to pick up our coats, which had been tossed on the bed along with the coats of the other people at the party. As I entered the room, a small gray streak leaped from the pillow and ran into the closet, knocking the door wide open as she ran. Your cat Cuddles really doesn’t like strangers.
“I went over to the closet, meaning to pet the cat and reassure her that people like me really like her. She stood on a shelf in the closet and hissed at me. Behind her on the shelf was a pile of books. The Way of a Man with a Maid. The Story of O. Nine and One-half Weeks. And about half a dozen Gor novels.
“So I shooed Cuddles out of the closet and I shut the closet door tight so that no one else could see what I had seen.
“I had heard of The Story of O before. I looked up the others on the Internet. I read The Way of a Man with a Maid; it’s available online. A few weeks later I found a copy of Assassin of Gor in a used book store, and I read that too.
“I used to have a friend whose life got badly mangled by malicious gossip. I didn’t want to do that to anybody. So I never told anyone what I had found, not even my parents. My mom can be a blabbermouth.”
Bill added “She never even told me, at first. I have known this story for only about a month. Okay, tell us about your back.”
Naomi resumed. “You already know about the accident that happened the following October. I was driving home from McDonald’s late one evening with a take-out fast-food meal for my mother and me, when a drunk crashed into me, wrecked the car, and sent me to the hospital with a very sore back. After that, my back hurt continuously for a year and a half. Sometimes it was bad, sometimes it was not so bad, but it always hurt. Our family doctor prescribed some strong pills, and they helped, but he wouldn’t let me have very many at a time. I had to save them for when it was really bad. I used lots of Tylenol, and sleeping pills most nights. It was no fun at all. I was almost always grumpy.
“Then about three months ago, I was taking a walk, trying to get some exercise. I used to enjoy running, but with my bad back I couldn’t run any more. My foot slipped on a small patch of ice, and I fell and threw my back out all over again just as bad as after the drunk driver hit our old car. Gawd, that hurt! I lay there for a few minutes. Then I picked myself up and staggered for another three houses, to your place, walking very carefully so as not to jolt my back. I had forgotten to carry my cell phone. I thought that you could call my mother and she could bring me some prescription pain pills, or else call 911 for an ambulance ride to the hospital.”
Bill took up the story at that point. “She looked horrible. Her face was actually gray with pain. Just looking at her set my nerves on edge. I needed to Do Something Now and not wait for her mother or for an ambulance. I remembered some stuff that I had learned from a chiropractor website. I realized that I had access to the needed equipment, if I were willing to use it. I had accidentally found your spare special-room key in its hiding place weeks earlier when I was looking for something else. I knew that it was completely against the family rules, but Naomi, lovely Naomi, was standing in front of me being tortured by back pain. So I decided to break the rules and help her.
“That may have been a stupid decision. I could have done much more harm than good. I know that now. Fortunately things have worked out well.
“I didn’t want her to see the special room, so I concocted a story about a video I had seen. According to this imaginary video, bad backs might possibly cause migraine headaches, which get worse in bright light, so the first step in her treatment was a blindfold. Then I took her down to the basement, and I put her on the rack, and I began to stretch her. Two notches tighter, and one notch looser, two notches tighter, and one notch looser, over and over again, with one minute between each adjustment. That chiropractor website warned that back muscles would try to fight a steady stretch. Chiropractors use fancy special beds for this kind of treatment, with sensors that detect tight muscles and ease off on the tension to get those muscles to relax. Our rack has no special sensors, so I had to keep alternating, two notches tighter, one notch looser.
“It took me about an hour before I got the springs in the rack mechanism about half stretched and she was nice and tight. I left her there for another hour. I sat next to her and read the articles in the current issue of People magazine, out loud, so she always knew I was right there and she hadn’t been abandoned. And then I released her the exact opposite of the way I stretched her out, two notches looser, one notch tighter, over and over again. Naomi, tell my folks how you felt then.”
Naomi replied, “My back still hurt, but it was only the ordinary background hurt that I had gotten used to over the previous year and a half. I felt almost normal.”
Bill finished the story of that first treatment: “Afterwards I walked her home, just in case her back went out again. It didn’t. When we reached her front door, she gave me the first real kiss that we have ever shared. I walked back home on air after that kiss. I am damn lucky I didn’t slip on an icy spot myself and throw my own back out.
“The next week she phoned me and asked for another treatment. I put her back on the rack and stretched her again. I think that she fell asleep when she was fully stretched; she wasn’t answering anything I said. She was wearing backless low-slung shoes, with no socks, and her shoes fell off of her feet. I tried to resist the temptation, but in the end it was too much for me. When the tension was about halfway back off, I began to tickle those lovely helpless naked feet.
“She giggled. She laughed. She squirmed. She wriggled. But she couldn’t stop me. I kept tickling for about ten minutes before I finished releasing her. How did you feel then, Naomi?”
Naomi answered, “After that treatment, my back did not hurt.
“There was no pain from my back.
“My back actually felt good.
“I don’t know if I can really explain how wonderful that felt. For the first time in a year and a half, my back wasn’t hurting. That felt glorious! I knew I would do anything to have that feeling again. Over the next few days I felt only a few mild twinges from my back. It took a week before it even began to hurt continuously once again.
“Bill and I talked on the phone the next time you two were out of the house at a play rehearsal, and I asked for another treatment. He told me to get dressed in blue jeans and a sweatshirt and come on over. I figured that he was using reverse psychology when he told me what to wear, so I wore a bikini instead of ordinary underwear under my clothes. I used the bathroom before the treatment was supposed to start. I came back out wearing just the bikini.
“He flat-out refused to do me. I never expected that.
“I tried begging, and pleading, and crying, for at least ten minutes before I could get him to change his mind. Then he insisted that I put my clothes back on before he took me downstairs. He covered me with that oversize beach towel before he started. But in the end, he did stretch me, and keep me stretched for an hour, and tickle me for ten minutes when the tension was halfway off again. Once again when he was done, my back did not hurt at all.
“I realized then that I was in a totally secure and perfectly legal trap. I had essentially become Bill’s slave. He could get me to do anything he wanted just by threatening not to stretch me. If he wouldn't stretch me, then sooner or later my back would go out again and I would again be in constant pain. Where could I find anybody else who could, or would, stretch me and tickle me? My mom doesn’t believe in chiropractors, and I never heard of a chiropractor who believed in tickling anyway. But tickling certainly works well on me.”
Bill took up the story again. “I meant what I said when I told her to get dressed in blue jeans and a sweatshirt. If I put her on the rack in a bikini, sooner or later my tickling fingers would wander away from her feet toward the rest of her body. If that happened, I would be on a slippery slope toward consequences that I didn’t want to risk. I used the beach towel to cover her for the same reason, to hide her body away from my eyes. You probably wouldn’t have trusted me alone with Naomi stretched on the rack. I didn’t trust me either. I kept her covered.
“And that is what we were doing when you came home early tonight.”
After a long pause, Carolyn said “You called yourself Bill’s slave, and you would do anything he wanted. Anything? Suppose he stripped you naked, here right now in front of us, and took you down to the play dungeon, and strapped you to the X-frame. How would you feel about that?”
Naomi eagerly answered “You have an X-frame? I’ve seen pictures of them online, and wondered how it would feel to be strapped on. Does it tilt? Could Bill tickle me upside-down? That might be another way to work on my back.”
That answer set up a long response by Bill. “You are giving away secrets, Mom. Dad did it first, when he called the stretching machine a rack. Now you have called the special room a play dungeon, and you have told Naomi that there is an X-frame there. She didn’t know. She has never seen that room. She has always been blindfolded when she was in it. I put the blindfold on her in the kitchen.
“One time back when I was thirteen, you left the door of the special room unlocked, and I snuck in and looked around. You caught me. You told me never to tell anyone what I saw, or say anything else to anybody about the room, and sure as hell never to show that room to my friends or to anybody else. And I haven’t broken those rules, not even to Naomi. I called it a special room, with a stretching machine. I didn’t say anything about anything else. Now she knows that the special room is a play dungeon, with a rack, and that there is an X-frame and other stuff in there too. She can probably make some pretty good guesses about what that stuff could be.
“I suppose that if I could flap my arms so fast that I flew out the living-room window, and I ordered her to follow me, then she would flap her arms equally fast and stay right behind me. In the real world that is about as probable as my stripping her right now in front of you and taking her back into the dungeon naked.
“There is a saying that a guy chases a girl until she catches him. That is true here; I’m caught. I’m a guy just out of high school, and I have a beautiful girl completely dependent on me for her happiness. She can’t stay free of pain without my help. That is a damn big responsibility. I may be the one who gives the orders, but I am not into humiliation or pain for the sake of hurting anyone, especially her. I try to keep her best interests in mind.
“Would she object if I stripped her naked right now in front of you? That’s a meaningless question, because it would be too humiliating, so it will never happen, and she knows it. I think that the lawyer’s word is ‘moot’. It’s a moot question.”
His parents thought about this for a moment. Then Frank said “You’ve never shown her any other stuff at all? Not even any of the little stuff? What are you using to keep her hands behind her back?”
“A direct order. I had to convince you that Naomi will follow my orders, without argument or cheating, so I ordered her to keep her hands behind her back until told otherwise. Naomi, bring your hands in front into your lap and keep them there. Do not disturb your blindfold.” Naomi promptly did what she had been told to do. She smiled when she realized that she was being pleasing to the young man who owned her.
“What about her blindfold?”
“That’s mostly first-aid supplies. Cotton pads over each eyeball, held in place with medical tape. I covered it with a black silk scarf from the hall closet, for looks and to keep the corners of the medical tape pinned down so that they wouldn’t start peeling away.”
Carolyn asked “Naomi, what do your parents think about all of the time you must be spending here, with no adults around?”
Naomi answered “My dad is hardly ever at our place since the divorce. He probably doesn’t realize that Bill is more than just another boyfriend to me. My mom thinks that there is no way to stop teenagers from having sex, whether or not we’re allowed to. It appears to her that that is what Bill and I have been doing. So she got me a prescription for birth-control pills. She hasn’t any clue that anything kinky is going on.”
Frank said “You have been keeping secrets from us that you shouldn’t have kept. We’d better get everything on the table now. Have you had sex?”
Naomi replied “No.”
Bill added “Under the circumstances, any sex that I had with her would be rape. She couldn’t choose freely when her only option is horrible back pain. I am not a rapist. So having her as my slave, dependent on me for happiness, has probably actually prevented sex from happening.”
Naomi saw a chance and took it. “Dependent on you for happiness. Bill, honey, I’m not happy about never having sex.”
Frank asked his son, “Were you planning to tell us what’s been going on, or just try to keep it a secret?”
“I would have told you in about three weeks. Naomi’s eighteenth birthday is coming up. In three weeks I’d be able to tell you that she is a legal adult and can consent to the treatments that I am giving her.”
Frank asked, “Naomi, would you really tell everyone you know about the play dungeon, the special room?”
“Mr. Smith, would you really punish your son, and end our access to the special room, and torture me by exposing me to back pain that slowly gets worse?”
“I won’t, if you won’t. Deal?”
“How do we work this. Uh, Bill, order Naomi to hold her right hand out.” Bill followed that order, and Naomi followed Bill’s order. His father shook her hand, and the deal became official.
Then he asked “With that settled, what happens to your relationship now?”
Naomi answered, “I hope that he will change his mind about treating me while I am wearing a bikini. I’m going to buy a really wild bikini that I found in the lingerie store down at the mall. It ties on with four bows, behind my neck and between my shoulder blades and on both hips. Bill will be able to take it off me very easily when I am stretched, and I won’t be able to stop him. Bill, honey, if I wear that bikini, it means I want you to give me a treatment face-up instead of face-down.”
Frank turned to his son and asked one final question. “Will you be taking Naomi into the play dungeon without a blindfold and showing her how the rest of the stuff can be used?”
Bill said, “Probably not. I wouldn’t be able to give her any fun surprises then.“
And Naomi said, “I rather hope that he doesn’t. I knew I was being stretched on a rack even before hearing that word tonight. I have been imagining that room as having stone walls, lit by flaring torches, and Bill is wearing leather pants and an executioner’s hood. That’s how it appears in my imagination. Appearances can be very important when playing these kinds of games.”
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