It was a dull weekday morning and Lily Maxted was making her way to work through the inner city streets.
Lily was a slim, taller than average girl in her early twenties. She had a thin pleasant face with a pointed chin and short, slightly wavy brown hair. Though no beauty, some might have called her attractive in a quiet way. Today she was dressed for work, wearing a wide woollen skirt, simple white blouse and a warm brown cardigan. Because rain had been forecast later she wore a blue plastic raincoat that rustled as she walked. She carried a leather handbag with a long strap.
She was a good natured but shy girl who did not form relationships easily. She did not have a boyfriend. Lily had had only three sexual experiences in her life and had enjoyed none of them. For this she unjustly blamed herself and did not consider an inept, bungling partner.
She was a computer data processor for a financial investment firm. Not a very demanding job but she did it well. She was quite intelligent, a quick learner and hoped to rise in the world of computers. Her employer was a forceful lady named Sarah Wassmann. A woman of great knowledge of the world of computerised finance, both national and international. Though it was felt that some aspects of what she did would not stand too close scrutiny.
But Lily, as a simple processor on the lowest level of Sarah’s organisation knew nothing of this. Though she worked in the same office building as this great entrepreneurial lady she hardly knew her.
She reached the office. It was a good address, expensively equipped internally but a very simple and unadorned building outside. She turned down a side entry to the unobtrusive doorway by which she always entered the building.
Sarah Wassmann always insisted on the tightest security. Lily’s practice was to knock twice on this secluded door. It opened into an anteroom which led to the main data storage room at one end of which was the desk of Moya Morris who was Ms Wassmann’s very effective second in command. Normally, on hearing the knocks Moya would go through the anteroom, open the door, admit Lily and re-lock it.
Ms Morris herself was a solid, thickset, active woman in her very early fifties. A square, very determined face with black hair which was always secured in a tight bun on the back of her head. She was something of a genius with computer records and all the girls in the office were in awe of her.
But this morning she did not come as usual to open the door to Lily’s knock. The girl was puzzled and finally touched the door knob. Incredibly, it was unlocked. She pushed it open and, after some hesitation, stepped inside.
She stood in the anteroom wondering what next to do. She was always indecisive when events did not follow their usual pattern. Then the door to Ms Morris’s office opened and a woman came out.
Lily had never seen this person before. She was in her late thirties, with an a firm athletic figure. A square forthright face framed by short fair hair, she looked a capable woman who got things done. She wore a thick grey overcoat, buttoned to the throat and a narrow brimmed hat pulled down over her face.
“Good morning Lucy, “ she began, “I wondered when you’d get here.”
Lily was feeling uneasy. She ignored the mistake over her name and hesitatingly asked, “Who’re you? And where’s Mrs Morris? She usually lets me in.”
“She’s at her desk. She’s not letting anyone in this morning. But perhaps you’d better come and have look at her.” And with that she clamped her hand on Lily’s upper arm. The plastic material crackled as she did so. She was obviously a very strong person. "This way dear.”
Lily did not like the way things were going at all. “I don’t think,—“ she began. The woman tightened her already tight grip.
“I said ‘this way,’” the woman spoke firmly and hustled Lily through the doorway into Ms Morris’ office.
The chair behind the desk in Moya Morris’ domain was the most expensive and comfortable in the building. Shining tubular steel framework and soft black leather padding on the arm rests, back and seat. She claimed she needed it because she spent so many hours in it and had to relax from time to time. This morning she was seated in it but certainly not relaxing.
She had been tied to her chair and gagged. Lily gaped at the sight.
Wide blue duct tape had been used to secure her to her privileged seat. It had been wound several times around her forearms, anchoring them firmly to the leather topped armrests. Her waist had been bound to the steel back shaft a dozen times and longer lengths had been used to bind her ample thighs to the comfortable seat. Her skirt had been lifted and more tape used to tie her legs above the knees. Finally her ankles had been secured by repeated turns halfway up her calves. Lastly, a very large and efficient gag had been put in her mouth and held in place by more tape around her head and under her bun.
Moya Morris was certainly not going anywhere for a while did not look happy about it.
“As you can see,” smiled the woman, “Ms Morris is a little tied up at the moment, if you’ll excuse the joke. And sadly, it becomes necessary to tie you up as well. Put your handbag here on the desk.” Lily shuddered but did so. The woman seized her by the other upper arm and spun her around facing the wall. “We can use the same material as we’ve used on your friend here.” She picked up the half used roll of duct tape from Moya’s desk. “And I’d advise you not to struggle or fight me. I can tie you up unconscious just as easily. I’m quite used to handling ladies like yourself.” Lily believed her. She had no intention of fighting this woman.
Swiftly, she set to tying Lily up. First she crossed her hands behind her back and wound several turns of duct tape around her wrists. Next she lashed her arms to her sides with more tape. Her plastic waterproof crackled and rustled as she did so. “Matches the colour of your raincoat darling, doesn’t it?” was the comment. “And now, one thing more. We'll have to gag you.”
“Please,” Lily cried , “I won’t call out. I’ll…..”
“Hush darling,” the woman had taken a rubber ball gag from a bag on the desk. “Open your pretty mouth and then let your jaws relax. You’ll be more comfortable.” She forced the soft ball into her mouth and secured the catch behind her head. Lastly she she picked up Lily’s handbag and hung it around her neck by its strap. “There now. Ready for shipment.” Lily wondered what was meant by ’shipment.' She took the captive by her forearm and pushed her forward. “Let’s go.”
The two left Moya bound and fuming silently at her desk, walked the length of the data storage room, through the door at the end and entered the ladies' staff room.
Lily’s two fellow processors, Myra and Betty were already there, both seated on the staff lounge. Myra, a tall thin girl with long dark hair, Betty, somewhat shorter and more solidly built had a round, often smiling face and short wavy brown hair. Both were dressed for the bleak day outside in woollen winter overcoats, each fully buttoned.
And both these young ladies were tightly bound and gagged. They had been trussed with lengths of soft white rope. There were several unused pieces of this on the staff room table. Their wrists had been firmly tied behind their backs by several windings and held in place with multiple knots. Their arms had been lashed to their sides with more rope and tightened by cinches under their armpits. Finally their legs had been secured by more bonds above the knees and around the ankles. Their captors had been lavish with their use of this cord and the girls looked like carefully wrapped parcels tied up with white string.
Lastly, each girl had a large dampened wad of folded towelling forced into her mouth, held in place with several strips of adhesive surgical tape across the lower part of her face. Clearly, these two young ladies, like Moya Morris back in her office, were completely immobilised and had nothing to say about the matter.
Myra had accepted her situation and was lying quietly without moving, though her eyes bugged widely above her taped mouth. Betty however, was struggling against her bonds and mewing against her gag. The woman escorting Lily looked critically at them both. “Something remains to be done here,” she commented.
“You sit here Lucy,” she said, pushing her captive down onto a low stool in the corner. Lily wondered at the continued mistake about her name.
The woman picked up a length of white rope from the table, looped it around Myra’s waist, pulled her along to the end of the lounge and firmly tied her to the wooden armrest. Next she did the same thing to Betty. The two girls were now seated at opposite sends with almost a metre between them. “Just to stop you two darlings wriggling around, getting back to back and then untying each other,” it was explained.
Betty continued to writhe and mew through her gag. The woman took her chin in her hand, “You can just stop that Missy. For a start, it’ll do you no good. You’ve been tied up by experts. And furthermore, we’ve got chloroform to quieten you down with if you persist.” Betty stopped.
“As you can see, these two aren’t going anywhere for a while.” She pulled Lily to her feet. “Now then,” she said,”Let’s go and see the boss lady.” And with that she hustled her captive out the door.
The two walked along the corridor to Sarah Wassmann’s office at the end. This room was the most opulent in the whole complex. One of the largest, it had a polished wooden desk, paintings on the walls and was thickly and expensively carpeted. Ms Wassmann liked to do herself proud and the money she made enabled her to do this.
Sarah was proud of the success of her enterprise. She was a heavy solid woman of forty eight. A thick torso, perhaps heavier than she should have been, a square determined face, unwavering dark eyes and thick dark hair cut in a sensible short trim. To give her her due she exercised whenever she could and was sensible with what she ate. She could be described as vigorous active woman in excellent health. She was tertiary educated and had risen to great heights in her profession.
Today things were not as usual in Sarah’s office. She had arrived at her customary early starting time but from there her normal routine had altered very much indeed. Lily and her captor entered the main door.
Two men were in the room with Ms Wassmann. Both wore dark grey boiler suits and had uniform peaked caps pulled low down over their faces. They looked like contract tradesmen or cleaners and as if to support this they had hand tool-boxes with them. Both wore dark glasses.
These two had made Sarah Wassmann stand on the plush carpeting in the centre of her office. They had tied her wrists behind her back and were now tying her arms to her sides, using soft white rope from the tool-boxes, similar to that used to bind the two girls in the staff room. Sarah was wearing the custom tailored dark grey business suit she always wore in the office. The men were using the rope extensively make a secure job of binding her and, like her two data processors, she was beginning to look like a well wrapped package. And like the girls she had been gagged with a large damp wad held in place with strips of tape.
“Well Sarah,” the woman greeted her familiarly, “Tightly bound and gagged I see. You’re about to go on a journey. You and your little friend Lucy here.” Sarah’s eyes narrowed at this misuse of Lily’s name.
“We’ve just finished her,” one of the men murmured. He picked up Sarah’s wet raincoat from her desk and draped it over her shoulders, fastening it by the top front button. “We’re ready to go.”
“Good. Let’s be on our way.” The woman pushed Lily toward the door. Sarah remained firmly standing where she was. Obviously she was not going anywhere at the behest of these people.
The woman reached inside one of the tool-boxes on the desk and took out a long, flat plastic box. She turned to the obstinate Sarah. “In this,” she said, “Is a needle containing a very strong sedative. One injection into your neck and you’ll become very groggy and drowsy. Then you’ll simply go in any direction you’re pushed.” She smiled, “You’ll be a lot more comfortable if you remain conscious and come along with us. You’ve really got no choice you know.” Sarah glared at her but appeared to accept this.
The whole party of five then left the office.
They walked along the hallway to the lift at the end and took this down to the garage on the basement floor below. In this was a large grey unmarked panel van. The back door was opened and Lily and Sarah were forced to get inside. A thick blanket had been spread on the floor and they were both made to lie down on it. Their legs and ankles were then bound with more white rope from the tool-boxes.
“I’ll travel with them,” said the woman, sitting down on a seat running the length of one side of the van. “You two just get us there.” The two men nodded and got into the front seat. The van was then driven out of the garage and into the morning traffic.
The drive lasted over five hours. The two captives, bound and gagged, did not know where they were being taken. Though Sarah sensed there was a lot of highway driving involved and lastly, travel over country roads. She guessed they had been going westward.
The van finally stopped. The back door was opened and the two passengers were lifted out and their legs unbound. They found themselves in a large rectangular garage complex. It was very long with a workshop area at one end. There were several vehicles parked along one side. Two women were standing there to meet them.
One, obviously in charge, was in her early forties. Trim, yet solidly built, her wide face framed by short, very fair hair. She carried a clip board and wore glasses. The other, equally solid but slightly shorter was of African background and looked very strong. Both were wearing green uniforms, clearly well made and of good material. These were of calf length and secured by wide, tight belts around the waist.
“Good afternoon people,” the lady with the clipboard said, “You’re earlier than expected.” She looked at the two captives, “And I’m sorry but there’s no chance of dealing with these two today.” She looked sharply at Sarah, wearing her raincoat draped over her shoulders and at Lily who still had her handbag hung around her neck. The two were starting to look around at their surroundings despite both being bound and firmly gagged.
The over coated woman who had accompanied the pair on their journey seemed nonplussed. “But we were told they’d be processed at once.”
“Sorry, but it can’t be done today,” the uniformed woman with the clipboard was adamant, “Tomorrow morning, first thing without fail. And meanwhile, they’re both showing too much interest in the surroundings here.” She nodded to the dark girl who produced two soft black hoods which they draped over the captives’ heads. “And now we’ll escort them to their quarters.”
Lily and Sarah, bound, gagged and now blindfolded were seized by the upper arms and hustled out of the garage area. They were guided along several long corridors and then heard a lock click then sensed they were being ushered through a doorway.
They were in a large rectangular room, about three and a half metres wide by about nearly five long. It had a smooth concrete floor and long barred horizontal window high up on what was obviously an outside wall. There was a table and two chairs at one end and what appeared to be an ablutions area at the other. It consisted of a recessed mirror and wash basin in the middle with a curtained shower area on one side and a door, presumably a toilet, on the other. Two tubular steel cot style beds were in the centre. Everything was neat, tidy and clean.
“Well ladies,” said the green uniformed woman, “This is where you’ll spend the night. And most of tomorrow too.” She, assisted by her African companion and the over coated woman began to untie the two captives. The lengths of rope and the duct tape which was cut off with scissors were collected in a bag. Sarah’s raincoat was tossed onto one of the beds. Lily’s handbag was left around her neck.
Their gags were removed. Sarah glanced at Lily then began to speak as if she had something to say. “I think you’ve made a mistake here. It seems…”
“Hush darling,” said the uniformed woman said, “Or we’ll quieten you down with an anaesthetic. Any mistakes can be sorted out later."
“That’s it girls,” said green uniform when all was done. “You’ll find the beds soft, warm and comfortable. Towels and washers folded in the cabinet under the basin. Reading matter the little cabinet in the corner. We’ll give you dinner in about four hours. Enjoy.” Everything seemed to have been provided for their comfort. “Oh, and we’ll be in later in the evening to bed you down.” What was meant by this last was not made clear. But they said no more. All three left the room, locking a solid looking door in the outer wall as they went.
Lily and Sarah Wassmann stared after them. Sarah picked up her raincoat and hung it on a peg on the side wall. Lily spoke for the first time.
“What is this place?”
Sarah smiled. “It’s a place I’ve heard of vaguely but never been sure exactly where it is. I suspect it’s in a remote part of the western mountains. Very few people know anything about it. But I do know there’s a lot of big money - international money - gone into it.”
“One thing I do know is not to talk about it when we get out. This lot can make people disappear as if they’d never existed.” She winked at Lily.
Lily was simply relieved to learn they might ultimately get out of here. And she was gratified to be getting on so well with Mrs Wassmann. She had hardly known the woman and had heard she was a stern forbidding person. Here she seemed kindly enough.
“Why have we been brought here?”
“I know why I’ve been brought here. They want information.” Sarah shook her head, “What I cannot understand is why they’ve gone to the trouble of bringing you along. You can tell them nothing.” She smiled, “I suspect they’ve made a mistake.”
“They keep calling me Lucy for some reason.”
“Then I know they’ve made an error,” Sarah laughed. “They’ve mistaken you for someone else. I tried to tell them that a while ago.” She smiled again, “I could've told them that back in the office if they hadn’t been so quick to gag me. Then you’d have ended up bound and gagged in the ladies’ staff room with Myra and Betty. Instead of being dragged all the way up here.” She laughed, “I’m disappointed with these people. I thought they did their homework better.”
“So what do we do now?”
Sarah Wassmann shrugged. “We wait. They’ve said they won’t do anything with us today. We’ll just have to enjoy, as they put it, these quarters they’ve provided us with.”
And try to enjoy their surroundings they did. The book cabinet contained some good fiction and even a few philosophical works. Sarah tried to interest Lily in some of them but they were not her thing.
“I’d like to learn more about computers,” she told the older woman.
“Would you?” Sarah was surprised, “Well, from what little I know of this place, they, amongst other things, do some very advanced computer work here. At an international level. It’s unfortunate you won’t be in a position to learn from them.”
Late in the afternoon they both had a shower in the facilities. They found the water hot, soap provided and the towels from the cabinet under the washbasin thick and fluffy. They put their own clothes back on though there were folded dressing gowns on the beds.
As promised, in the early evening dinner arrived. A dark Latina girl brought in a tray and put it on the end table. She faced them and said “Din-nar.” Clearly, she had very little English.
It consisted of two hot meals under metal covers, adequately cooked and nourishing, along with two prepared sweets and a pot of tea. Cups, cutlery and paper napkins supplied. And all scrupulously clean. Both ladies were impressed. “I compliment them on their cuisine,” said Sarah.
They ate the meal and shortly after the Spanish looking girl came and took the tray away. Then they had more visitors. One was the athletic woman they had met back at Sarah’s office. Now she had shed her grey overcoat and wore a serviceable brown skirt and what appeared to be military style blouse with pleated breast pockets. With her was the solidly built, green uniformed lady of earlier this afternoon, only without her clipboard. Instead she was holding a wide, flat plastic box. And accompanying them was the capable looking African . All three looked determined and had their hands clasped in front of them.
“Evening ladies,” said the first woman. “We trust you’ve had a comfortable afternoon and eaten well. We’re here as promised to bed you down for the night. You’ve both got a big day tomorrow we want you both to get a good night’s sleep.”
Neither of the captives liked the sound of this. Sarah spoke. “We’re quite capable of bedding ourselves down, thank you. And the beds look soft enough.”
“Yes,” smiled the woman “But you’ll both sleep more soundly after we’ve given you each a mild sedative.” She opened the flat box showing several hypodermic needles.
“Now look here,” began Sarah.
“No, you look darling,” said the woman, “It’s essential you both get a full night’s sleep, starting now.” And with that the green uniformed woman seized Sarah by the upper arms and the other injected her in the neck. Seconds later they did the same to Lily. Both ladies began to feel drowsy almost at once.
“Lay them on the beds,” ordered the woman. Both Sarah and Lily were beginning to feel sleepy. The sedative was nothing, if not quick acting. “Bye bye girls. Sleep tight and we’ll see you bright and early in the morning.” These were the last words the two drugged captives were to hear that evening.
Lily slept soundly for over ten hours. She awoke rested, refreshed and began to assess her situation.
She was in one of the tubular steel beds, which, as they had been told, was warm, soft and very comfortable. She was also completely naked.
Lily’s eyes popped open. She raised her head to take in her situation. The first thing she saw was Sarah, sitting on the side of her bed. She was wearing a dressing gown and smiled when she saw Lily was awake.
“Good morning Lily, I thought I’d let you wake up of your own accord.” Her smile was reassuring, “Don’t be alarmed. Nothing’s likely to happen immediately. They’ll probably give us breakfast soon.”
“Where’re my clothes?”
“Same place as mine, I suppose,” Sarah explained, “They’ve taken them away. I daresay we’ll see them again, eventually. Possibly washed and ironed. I’ve no doubt the laundry unit here is as efficient as the kitchen.” She went on, “But meanwhile, all we’ve got to wear are these dressing gowns they’ve so thoughtfully left on the beds.” She continued smiling, “At least they’re warm, comfortable and reasonable quality. Even lambswool slippers under each bed.”
She laughed outright, “Nothing too good for their interrogation subjects.”
Lily looked worried. “Will they want to ask me questions?”
“They won’t,” She was reassured, “At least they won’t once they realise they’ve made a complete mistake bringing you here at all.” She snorted, “I’ll tell them that myself if they’ll let me say something before shoving a gag in my mouth.”
Lily got up, put on her dressing gown, tied it firmly at the waist and performed her toilette at the wash basin. She used the towel, face washer and soap provided. There was even a comb laid out.
Breakfast arrived on a tray shortly after. Carried in by the same Hispanic looking girl of the evening before. Cereal, bacon, toast and a pot of good coffee. The meal adequate, well cooked and kept warm under covers. The Latina paused and smiled before she walked away. “Brek-fuss,” was her comment.
“Well,” commented Sarah on taking a mouthful, “I will say their kitchen is really first class.”
Breakfast eaten, the two captives did not have to wait long. The trio from last night arrived. The woman who’d been with them from the start and her two green uniformed companions. They carried a cloth bag with them.
“Good morning ladies,” she began, “You’ll have slept well I would think. And now it’s question time. But first we’ve got to prepare you both.” And with that the bag was placed on the table and white rope and two ball gags were taken out. “Now, if you’ll both stand side by side, we’ll get on with it.”
The two dressing gowned captives were made to stand together, their arms pulled behind them and their wrists tied with the white rope.
“I can’t see that all this’s necessary,” began Sarah, “And I might point out once again you’ve made a mistake with my friend here.”
“Permit us our methods darling,” smiled the woman, “And you are far too talkative. You can save all of that for later.” And with that she forced a ball gag into Sarah’s mouth and secured the strap behind her neck. Lily was gagged the same way and then the arms of the captives were tied to their sides with more lengths of rope. Finally the black hoods were produced and placed over the heads of the bound pair.
And so, once again securely bound and blindfolded Lily and Sarah were marched out of the room, along several corridors and into what, even hooded, they knew was a well lit room.
The black hoods were removed and they saw they were in the largest room they had yet been in in this strange complex. Brilliant florescent lighting, walls lined with glass fronted cabinets and one end given over to desks and filing cabinets. What looked like some very sophisticated recording equipment was also present. And immediately in front of them, in the centre of the room, two large solid high backed wooden chairs with a small table between them.
“Very well ladies, here are your seating arrangements,” said the woman. Swiftly, their white cords were removed and Sarah and Lily were made to sit in the wooden chairs. The same ropes were then used to tie them to these solid seats. Their waists were bound to the central back uprights, then their arms were lashed to the broad arm rests. Next more rope from the bag was used to tie their thighs to the wooden seats. Finally they were bound above knees and lastly their ankles secured with the last of the rope. The two women glared at their captors. The ball gags were still firmly in place.
By an odd coincidence the two captives were tied to these antique pieces of furniture in exactly the same way Moya Morris had been bound to her state of the art armchair in her own office almost twenty-four hours before.
“Well then,” smiled the woman “Ready to go, aren’t we? All we need is for Madame to make an appearance.” She did not elucidate as to what she meant by this.
Then, as if to answer this last remark a door opened at the far end of the room. Not the door by which the quintet had come in but one that looked as if it led to an inner sanctum. A woman entered and began walk purposefully the length of the room towards them.
This lady would have been between fifty or sixty. Yet she had the trim active figure of one who has always looked after herself. A determined looking, square face with piercing blue eyes framed by short brown hair, very neatly set. She had the look of one accustomed to authority and used to wielding it. She wore an expensive blue trench coat, buttoned to the throat and neatly belted. As she approached, the posture of all three captors stiffened.
“Good morning ladies,” the newcomer spoke in a deep, smooth voice. “Sorry if I’m late. I’ve just travelled from the airport.” She looked at the two chairs and their bound occupants then stepped up closely to Sarah.
“Sarah Wassmann, isn’t it?” she began. “We’ve never met but I’ve heard of you and I’m sorry we meet under these circumstances. But perhaps things will improve.” A quick aside to one of the green uniforms, “Take that gag out of her mouth at once.” The African girl hastened to do so.
This lady, so obviously in charge, then turned and looked at Lily. “And who’s this?”
The woman who had been with the captive pair from the start spoke up, “This’s Lucy Brassed. Mrs Wassmann’s computer advisor.”
“It isn’t. I know Lucy, this isn’t her. She’s far too young.”
For the first time the woman appeared to loose confidence. And by now Sarah was ungagged and indignant. “That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you people right from the start. And every time I do I’ve had a gag pushed into my mouth.”
“OK, OK,” said the woman hastily, “Very well, I’ve made a mistake. Well, it can’t be helped now. We’ll take her back to the holding room.” She stepped forward to untie Lily from the chair.
“No, wait.” The trench coated woman smiled and looked closely at the bound girl. “You’re Lily, aren’t you?’ Lily nodded, at the same time wondering how she knew this. “Perhaps you can tell us something about Sarah’s processing system. And perhaps,” the smile deepened slightly, "We can help you.” Her raincoat rustling, she turned to the green uniformed African girl, “Amrah, would you be so good as to prepare our friend? And remove her gag.”
The dark girl smiled, pulled the ball gag out in seconds and turned to a nearby table on which equipment was laid out. Deftly, she pulled on a pair of rubber gloves, took an injection needle out of a metal case and approached Lily with an antiseptic pad in her other hand. “This won’t hurt,” she said reassuringly. “It’ll be over in a minute.”
“Please…” murmured Lily, not so sure herself. Within seconds she was expertly injected. It occurred to her this was the second time she had been put to sleep by anaesthetic in twelve hours. Once again she could feel drowsiness stealing up on her.
Lily awoke about an hour later. She was back in the room where she and Sarah had spent the night and was lying on one of the beds, unbound, without a gag and still wearing the dressing gown. She could dimly remember a drugged haze and a period of questioning but had no recollection of what had been asked or what she had said.
She sat up and put her feet, still wearing warm slippers, on the floor. She was alone, Sarah was not here. Then the door opened and a young man came in.
He looked to be in his late twenties, somewhat older than herself. His figure was slim, his posture erect and he looked fit with an oval face and straight, light brown hair. He could be said to be reasonably good looking and had a pleasant smile. Lily eyed him carefully.
The door clicked behind him and he made sure it was locked. He then turned and spoke. “Good morning Lily. I’m Colin. I’ve been sent to see if you’re OK. And if you want anything.”
“I’m alright,” she said. “Where’s Sarah?”
“They’re still talking,” he answered, “And will be for a while. I know, I was there after they injected you both. Sarah’s an intelligent woman. I suspect she’s learning as much from the questions being asked as she’s giving out. That drug they’re using tends to make some people very voluble. An odd thing about it is that if the subject is troubled about any particular problem they tend to go on about extensively, whether they’re asked about it or not.”
Lily winced. “They used it on me too. Did I say anything personal?”
Colin looked at her with a serious expression but did not say anything.
“Come on. Tell me. I want to know.”
“Well,” he said “You did go on at some length about your dealings with one Gerald.” He seemed embarrassed to tell her this.
Lily closed her eyes and leaned back. Her three disastrous couplings with Gerald had been the sum total of her sexual experience. She had sacrificed her virginity, been thoroughly uncomfortable from start to finish and been left totally unsatisfied. Yet she blamed herself, never thinking it might have been a clumsy, hopelessly incompetent partner who would have had problems with any woman.
Colin looked at her with sympathy. “It wasn’t your fault. It was clearly his. Those three episodes should never have happened.” He came and sat on the bed beside her. “Anyway, because it was nothing to do with their investigation, they didn’t record it. I’m the only other person who knows anything about it and I certainly won't tell anyone.”
Lily nodded her appreciation and decided to change the subject. “What’ll happen to Sarah?”
“They’ll talk for a few hours and then she’ll be taken back to her home, probably this evening. Bound and gagged perhaps but she’ll get there safe and sound. You of course will go along with her. After all, you should never have been here in the first place. And most certainly you’ll both be admonished never to say were you’ve been, or what happened to you. Which Sarah will be only too happy to do, bearing in mind what’s coming out about some of her business dealings.”
Lily again nodded her thanks, pleased she would get home eventually and unharmed. The thought occurred to her that soon all this would only be a memory. In the meantime she had the company of this young man who seemed both friendly and sympathetic. She began to wonder what she should do.
She asked, “What is this place anyway?”
He laughed, “I can’t tell you anything about that. Let’s say it’s national, international in scope. And ladies who get on the wrong side of the administration here are likely to end up in some remote part of the Middle East, or Latin America.”
“Are they? And what’s your function here?"
“Many things. I do work on the upper floor here, that’s where the computers are. And I do also help with ladies passing through here,” he smiled, “As it is, I’ve been sent in here to comfort, console and put you at ease. The organisation is greatly embarrassed by you being here at all. It shouldn’t have happened. They pride themselves on their efficiency and not making mistakes.”
Lily was bearing in mind she that in ten to twelve hours she would never see this young man again. She was also becoming aware of her situation. Was opportunity offering? She was not devoid of initiative. She continued.
“And your helping with ladies passing through, as you put it? Does that mean you take advantage of them while they’re presumably bound and gagged?” She looked pointedly at him.
He laughed. “You're thinking the worst of me. Management here would take a dim view of that.” He went on, “I assist where I can and where needed. Comfort, consolation, psychologically, physically. Make what you will of that.”
“You’ve just said my previous very unsatisfactory love experiences shouldn’t have happened. That they were entirely due a clumsy, inexperienced partner?”
“They shouldn’t. They were.”
“And you’re not like that?”
He looked at her. “Well, since you ask. Believe me, I’m not boasting, merely stating fact when I tell you I’m competent, skilled and said to be very gentle.”
“Very well then,” she said softly. Her mind was fully made up. Looking him full in the face, she stood up and began to undo the tie of her dressing gown. “Perhaps we can both help each other? I take it we’ve got enough time?”
“We have.” He too stood up and began to unbutton his shirt.
Over an hour later Lily and Colin lay on the bed together. Both were naked. Lily had had her first ever entirely satisfactory love experience. And an excruciatingly, delightful orgasm. Her first ever. The first in her life. She was satiated, and content. Colin looked at the time. “They’ll be finished in there in about an hour,” he said, “Sarah will be back here then.”
Her eyes closed, Lily’s lips smiled, “Then we’ve got time to indulge again, haven’t we? No reason even to hurry.” She pulled Colin towards her.
About an hour and a quarter after this both were standing beside the bed in the final stages of getting dressed. Colin even tidied up the bed covers. Lily spoke.
“You say they have computers here on the top floor. That’s something I’ve always wanted to get into. There’s no future in what I’m doing now.”
“Well,” he commented, “I could take you up to talk to one of the ladies up there. Perhaps for half an hour or so. She’s approachable, generous and kindly enough to talk to you if she sees you’re interested. And she’s highly skilled, talented herself. As far as her own particular speciality goes she’s one of the three best in the country, perhaps even in the world.” He laughed, “Admittedly, her speciality is probing and ultimately breaking into the ironclad systems of other organisations, other countries. None of these people are happy about this happening to them but they all do it themselves.” He laughed again, “Such are the times in which we live, the ability to do this is form of piracy is very much in demand.”
He went on. “I can introduce you to this lady and she is one of the best. I know, I’ve worked with her frequently.” He grinned, “One of my specialities.”
“You seem to be quite a specialised person,” she commented. “After all, haven’t I just enjoyed some of your expert ministrations myself?”
They both smiled at each other.