Wendy leant on the door bell again. She’d been ringing the bell for several minutes and was getting somewhat annoyed; she knew Susie was at home so why wasn’t she answering? She heard shuffling on the other side of the door which finally opened a crack to reveal a pale sunken eyed face.
“Christ you must have tied one on over the weekend.”
The face dissolved into tears, the shoulders heaving with deep sobs.
Wendy pushed the door open and entered.
“What the hell has happened? You didn’t turn up for work today so I thought I’d pop round and see what was up. So what is up?”
The sobbing figure backed away, turned, and led the way into the kitchen where she sat down. Wendy pulled up another chair and sat down alongside her putting her arm around her shoulders. Susie leaned in towards her, still sobbing.
“Tell Wendy all about it. I thought you were ill, but something’s up isn’t it?”
Sniff.”I was raped.”
“You’ve were raped? Have you been to the police?”
Another sniff. “Well ... I’m not sure it was rape ... really. But I was tortured.”
“Tortured? Are you serious? And why wasn’t it rape? And when did it happen?”
“All weekend!” Wendy realised she was beginning to sound like a parrot. “Have you reported this to the police?”
“I’ll call them.”
“You’ve got to.”
“Because ... I sort of agreed to it. Anyway he’ll get me if I do anything”
“Agreed to it? Don’t be silly. You’ve got to report him otherwise he’ll do it again. The police will protect you.”
Wendy sniffed. “You’ll feel better if you had a shower Suse.”
Susie gave a wan smile. “Probably smell better you mean.”
“You have a shower and I’ll make some coffee. Have you had anything to eat?”
“No, I’m not hungry. I couldn’t eat.”
Half an hour later a more fragrant Susie sat in the kitchen drinking coffee and tucking in to a plate of buttered toast.
Susie licked her fingers. “Mmm, thankyou.”
“Want to tell me about it?”
“So she told me about this bloke she’d been seeing, and how nice he’d been, and then friday night he took her back to his place and cooked her supper. But it seems maybe she had a glass of wine too many and the next thing she knew she was flat on her back and couldn’t move a muscle
Wendy, who had, of course, been sworn to silence, was talking to her friend Anne on their regular tuesday evening night out, telling her all about her encounter with Susie. Susie was a work colleague of theirs, rather than a close friend, and the gossip was just too good to pass up.
All three worked for a small electronics company, Wendy and Anne assembling printed circuit boards and doing whatever wiring was required for that particular product, while Susie worked in the office.
Wendy went on: “Yes! Seems he has a sort of dungeon torture chamber. Anyway the next thing he does is shave her. Yes, down there. Then he raped her.”
“Was that it?” As if that wasn’t enough Anne finally got a word in. But she sensed there was more.
“No! He tattooed her!”
“Tattooed! Oh my God! Where?”
“Well, she didn’t want to show me at first, seemed sorry she’d mentioned it. But then she stood up, and opened her dressing gown and she didn’t have a stitch on!”
“She had just had a shower, Wendy.”
“Yes, of course. But you know how skinny she is, I mean, straight up and down, almost no chest at all.”
“Not like you then,” said Anne, referring to Wendy’s generous endowment. “But I’ve always thought she needed a good meal. Anyway what’s that got to do with it?”
“Well, nothing really, but she just stood there, opened wide and I got the shock of my life! I looked at her boobs first, such as they are, and spreading out around the nipples was a sensuous pattern of intertwined scrolling branches, and leaves and flowers. Then I looked down at where she’d been shaved and there was the same sort of thing only looking as though that was where it grew from, it went up and curled around her navel. Funny thing was, she seemed quite proud of it! Mind you, it did look a bit painful, but why she wouldn’t do anything about it I don’t know.”
The conversation went on for some time until both women had worked themselves up into a fit righteous anger.
“And she won’t go to the police?” Anne confirmed.
“No, she was quite adamant. I think something ought to be done about him.”
“What do you mean?”
“Give him a dose of his own medicine. I’ll give it some thought, must be something we could do,” Wendy averred.
They parted shortly afterwards, Wendy promising to sort out what could be done.
A couple of days later Susie returned to work and everything appeared normal, although the very observant would have noticed her exhibiting signs of discomfort in areas that Wendy knew had been shaved and tattooed.
The next tuesday evening Wendy picked up Anne, obviously in a state of high excitement.
“We’re on,” she told her. “I’ve got everything worked out. We’re going to sort him out tonight.”
“Who?” Asked Anne, somewhat bewildered, having completely forgotten their conversation the previous tuesday.
“That man of course, Simon his name is. I’ve found out where he lives, done a recce and I’ve got something to sort him out.”
“D’you really think we should?”
And with that one word Wendy drove off. Twenty minutes later she tuned onto a secondary road and then into a narrow lane. After perhaps two hundred yards she stopped outside a small cottage.
“Is this it?” asked Anne, doubtfully.
Wendy sat and pulled on a pair of latex gloves and tossed a pair to Anne.
“Yes, put those on and follow me,” instructed Wendy, slinging a large bag over her shoulder.
They went through a pair of gates. In the yard was a late model Transit. To one side was the cottage and on the other a range of outbuildings with a large barn at the end. It was to the door of this that Wendy led the way.
When she reached the door she fumbled in her pocket for a moment, took something out and then opened the door. Inside there was a man working on something with his back to them. He turned to say something and then stopped.
“Who are you?” he asked.
At this point Anne realised that what Wendy was holding was a small automatic pistol.
“Never mind who,” said Wendy, “we’re here to sort you out.”
“Really? And how do you...”
Wendy thumbed the hammer back and theatrically operated the mechanism sliding a round into the chamber. The gun fired with a loud bang. The man was visibly shaken, as indeed was Anne, who clearly had no idea as to what Wendy intended. Neither at that point did Wendy, not having intended to fire the gun, but she had no idea that it had a safety catch.
“Over here,” said Wendy to the man, who had obviously decided that co-operation was a good idea.
Wendy got the man, who was, apparently, Simon, to stand in front of a contraption made of a tubular framework. There was a strap at chest height which she instructed Anne to buckle around the man’s chest whilst she continued to point the pistol at him. Once he was attached to the frame Wendy had Anne attach his ankles with the velcro straps that were hanging from it. after which the frame was tilted back to a horizontal position. Wendy moved to the man’s head and pointing the gun very close to his ear said, “Now let her tie your hands down.”
There was an arm on either side which pivoted forwards to form a cross and Anne attached his wrists to these with similar straps, immobilising him completely.
Anne did all this without question, responding to a command as she always had. She suddenly realised that this was perhaps not the best course of action.
“What are you doing?” she asked. “What’s going to happen?”
“You said last tuesday that we should do something about him and now we are. Watch.”
First Wendy picked up a ball gag and rammed it into Simon’s mouth. Then from the bag Wendy took an assortment of things, first a roll of duct tape with which she gagged him. Then a utility knife. She used this to cut away Simon’s jeans, and then his underwear exposing a fairly average set of male appendages. Next she took a cheese wire and threaded one loop through the other to form a noose. She waved this in front of his face and then proceeded to pass it over his penis and testicles, and, making sure that everything was through the loop, pulled it tight.
Next she picked up the control for one of the two electric winches that were attached to a beam at high level. Taking hold of the hook at the end of the winch wire she pulled it over to the looped cheese wire and attached it using another wire loop. Then she took out a small device, obviously based around a mobile phone, opened up the winch control and wired it into the circuit.
“There,” she said. “All ready. Now,” she looked at Simon, “you piece of shit, you are just going to have to wait for a phone called,” she laughed. “When it comes the winch will start and in a few minutes you won’t have the equipment to cause any more problems to women.”
She picked up her bag and turned to Anne.
“Come on, let’s go.” Looking at the struggling Simon she continued, “I’ll call you.”
With Wendy driving they got back to the main road before Anne spoke.
“We are going back to release him later aren’t we? She asked.
“Nope,” replied Wendy.
She put her hand in her coat pocket and pulled out her mobile phone.
“The number is programmed in here,” she looked at it and pressed a key. “There, just press call,” she looked and held Anne’s stare, a smile on her face, her thumb hovering over the key which she then pressed. This was a reflex action when they ran into the back of a lorry.
“Bloody good job I’d gone to make tea.” said Susie, as she removed the wire from Simon’s scrotum.
“I’ll say ... shit!” Simon exclaimed as the winch started. “Bugger, you cut that fine. Those bitches need teaching a lesson, particularly that one with the big tits.”
Airbags do, of course, save a lot of lives. And a lot of faces. But they don’t do a lot for shock. After a minute Wendy forced her door open, and in a typical female reaction grabbed her bag. Getting out wasn’t a the best of ideas as she tripped over her own feet and sprawled on the ground. The bag spilled most of its contents including the little pistol which skittered across the centre of the road, deflected off the tyre of a car going the other way and ended up hidden in the overhanging verge on the opposite side of the road. Wendy didn’t notice. At the same instant the driver of the car realised that something was wrong and stopped. The first thing he did was call 999.
Carrying his phone and talking to the emergency operator he went over to Wendy and ensured that she didn’t try to get up again. His passenger took over whilst he went round the car to Anne who was still sitting in the car. The passenger kindly picked up the contents of Wendy’s bag and put them back. Within fifteen minutes the emergency services started to arrive and shortly thereafter the two women were taken to hospital. The lorry driver, who had stopped because he had brake warning lights come on was unhurt but in a state of shock. The police, having something to do for once, made the most of it, and spent time taking statements and getting the road cleared.
The girls had to give statements the next day and it was made quite clear that there would be charges made, certainly driving without due care and using a mobile phone. The phone had of course fallen on the floor when the accident took place and it had taken but a moment for the police to ascertain that the last call had coincided with the accident.
They went home that day and were at work the next, thursday. Susie seemed pleased to see them and sympathetic too, enquiring after their welfare. At lunchtime Wendy practically dragged Anne out to the pub. When they were sitting at a quiet table before Wendy started on the issue uppermost in her mind.
“I’ve lost it!”
“I thought you did that tuesday evening!” quipped Anne.
“Oh!” Wendy exhibited exasperation at Anne’s flippant remark. “I mean the gun. It isn’t in my bag, and I’ve been to the car and it wasn’t there. D’you remember what happened?”
“The only thing I remember is being scared stiff for most of the evening. What were you thinking of? I’ve been checking every news bulletin to see if there has been anything about a bloke having his bits torn off. Where did you get the gun anyway?”
“You remember Bobby? That arsehole of a boyfriend I had a couple of years ago?”
“The one who got locked up for almost ever for smuggling drugs?”
“Yes, almost got me involved. If I’d met up with him when I was supposed to them I’d have been there when the police arrested him. Just as well my train was late. Anyway, a month or so earlier he’d come back from one of his trips, smuggling drugs I suppose, and he gave it to me for safe keeping. Someone in prison murdered him and I’ve had it ever since.”
“God you’re an idiot! Why on earth am I sitting here with you? Heaven knows, you’ll get me locked up.”
“A man out walking his dog saw it and called us Sarge.”
The speaker was police constable Sarah Smith.
“And it was right where those dozy tarts collided with the lorry the other night?” asked Sergeant Harry Harrison.
“Yes, Skip. But on the other side of the road”
“D’you think it had anything to do with them. I mean, you don’t find an automatic pistol lying around the English countryside too often do you? And I don’t like coincidences. What did you say it was?”
“An Astra Cub, Skipper, twenty two calibre. It’s pretty old and not in good condition. One round fired, recently too, and the safety was off. Bloody good job kids didn’t find it.” Sarah told him.
“I don’t think I’ve ever heard of one of those.”
“Apparently they were made in Spain, but the design is Colt.”
“Go and see the driver, Wendy wasn’t it? Check out her statement and just slip it into the conversation, see her reaction.”
“I talked to her on friday evening, Skip. She was good, but I am sure she knew about the gun. I don’t see what we can do, there were no prints and it’s too late to try for residue.”
“Keep an eye on her, Sarah. We’ll see what company she keeps, but we can’t afford to spend too much time on it.”
“Parcel for Mrs Brown,”
Wendy pressed the button to open the entrance door to the flats and waited for the delivery man to come up. She couldn’t think what the parcel could be, but as usual her insatiable curiosity over-rode her common sense. When he appeared from the lift he had a large packing case on a sack truck. He backed across to her door.
“What the hell is it?”
“No idea lady, I just deliver things.”