It was a beautiful late afternoon in the small Scottish country village, set in amongst soft rolling hills, with the ever present and reassuring noise of the river, which at certain points formed the border between Scotland and England and was famous for the salmon fishing it offered. All was peaceful and calm and most of the village’s population were preparing to attend the re-opening of the town’s major attraction, the Classic Car Museum.
Lady Virginia Grassington, who lost her husband eighteen months previously, had taken over the running of the museum. The building had been closed since the end of the previous summer season, and a major refurbishment had been carried out. This was to be the grand opening evening.
Tickets had been liberally distributed to the people of the village and amongst those who had worked on the renovations and the preparations for the evening’s events. Lady Grassington had recruited her daughter Poppy to help with the opening party. Poppy had recently graduated and was planning to enjoy a summer working in the museum, prior to seeking more long-term employment.
Virginia and Poppy had been at the location all day, busying themselves with preparations, generally polishing things that did not need polished and all manner of similar jobs. The famous family collection had never looked more beautiful and was never presented in such sumptuous surroundings. The only other person present was the catering woman, who was busy setting out canapés and preparing glasses for the wines that were chilling in the hired fridges. She was not known to the Grassington family, but her credentials seemed excellent. Lady Grassington, however, had been more than a little demanding and rude to her on several occasions within minutes of her arrival, demands that included the removal of her van to the rear of the building. She had also insisted that the caterer wear the same branded silken neck scarf that she and her daughter wore. This was a plush navy blue item with the crest of the museum on, featuring a 1913 Morris Oxford deluxe, perhaps the oldest example of the car in existence.
Virginia had dressed well for the occasion, with a cream satin blouse, her scarf, pearls, which sat low onto her sharp bosom, on account of the very uplifting bra she had chosen and a long black pencil skirt. She wore opaque black tights with ankle-height lace up black brogue Victorian boots, which made a great deal of noise as she strode across the hard painted stone floor. She had obviously applied a healthy excess of expensive scent. She cut a very dominating presence and was still a very attractive woman, with an excellent figure, even in her mid-fifties.
Poppy had a more youthful and fresh outfit on, comprising of flat white pumps, navy blue tights, a short Laura Ashley dress, mainly white with a blue leaf motif repeated within, and her scarf. Her long flowing blonde hair reflected the sun which was pouring in the ample windows.
The pair were on form that evening once the guests had arrived. There were a great deal of people there, many from the media and many friends, villagers and family. The caterer had done a fantastic job, despite having to withstand a torrent of abuse from Lady Grassington, when an errant champagne cork had flown across the room.
The event over, the entrance locked and with the setting sun casting a crimson hue in the main room of the museum, the three ladies set about clearing up. Poppy ventured down a corridor into the cloakroom to check that everyone had removed their jackets, and on seeing that all looked well, backed out into the corridor again, only to be grabbed forcefully from behind. Immediately a gloved hand tightly gagged her. A second person became evident to her, this time with a gun in his right hand and with his left index finger over his lips, clearly requesting silence. Poppy nodded that she would be silent, though she was consumed by shock and terror at that moment.
Poppy was frogmarched into the main hall, at which point, the man with the gun, demanded the other two ladies attention.
“OK ladies, silent please. I have a gun and my colleague here has a hold of the young lady. Poppy I believe?”
“Who are you, what are doing, why…”
“Silence!” Said the man curtly and pointed the gun towards Poppy, causing the still hand gagged young woman to mew as loudly into the gloved hand as she could.
“You will co-operate with us. Now. Will it be the easy way or the hard way?”
“Just tell me what you want and then leave my daughter alone.”
“Ah, now that’s better. And you? Will you co-operate easily?” he asked of the caterer who nodded nervously and silently.
“Now then, Poppy and you please take a seat. My colleague will look after you with this gun, as Ginny and I find the item we are here for.”|
“By the way, the canapés were wonderful, but perhaps the wine was a little – well, cheap?’” said the man in the direction of first the caterer and then Lady Grassington, who had a face like fury at this turn of events.
“You will not call me Ginny; you will call me Lady Grassington. Is that clear?”
“Fair enough. I have no desire to lower your status to the familiar, Lady Grassington.”
“Now let’s find what we have been tasked with ‘recovering’. I want the 1935 gear lever from the Alfa Romeo 2900 Scuderi Ferrari, as used by Nuvolari. It was stolen after the Italian Grand Prix and I believe you have it in the museum’s collection.”
“But my father bought that from..”
“My dear Lady Grassington, you are in no position to bargain with me. I am leaving here with the gear stick. Now go and get it. I will accompany you all the way.”
Lady Grassington reluctantly led the man to a storeroom at the rear of the premises and the gear lever was handed over. The man carefully placed it into the rucksack he had been carrying, that Lady Grassington noticed for the first time. The sack was small, but clearly was not empty.
“This is the item. My boss will be more than delighted to have this in his possession.”
Lady Grassington had tried to engage the man in conversation in order to garner some information as to what the motives for the raid were and what would become of them, but no reply to such questions was forthcoming. She doubted that they would come to much harm, as although extremely valuable, they were surrounded by millions of pounds worth of classic motor cars and artefacts, which she was surprised to find out, the raiders were not interested in at all.
Back in the main area, with Poppy sobbing gently onto the shoulder of the catering lady, all five came together again.
“We shall leave you now, but first, we must make sure you cannot raise the alarm.”
“Please don’t harm us.” Said Lady Grassington.
“Do not worry, we will not harm you if you co-operate.”
“Now. Take a seat Lady Grassington alongside the caterer, but not beside your daughter.”
The Grassingtons sat either side of the caterer on chairs, reminiscent of the type that you find in conference hotels. The type with a blue felt seating pad, and a wire surround to the back, with a matching pad for the back.
The man with the rucksack took out a cloth bag from his sack, the kind of canvas bag for life that is encouraged at retail outlets these days. He emptied this bag onto the catering table, which was clear, except for a pile of unused cotton napkins. The contents made the women gasp, for there were fabric strips, gent’s ties, fabric belts… It was obvious to them that they were to be tied up and there would be plenty of material with which to do it.
“You may be aware ladies, that my colleague doesn’t do much talking. What he does do and excels at more than anything else, is binding beautiful women. Sit back, relax and prepare yourselves for the pleasures that await you.”
“You’re not going to get away with this…”
“QUIET! Lady Grassington. I will refer to you as Ginny if you do not keep your counsel,” laughed the intruder as Lady Grassington scowled at him.
“Now, we will start with this poor lady, who slaved away to produce such an excellent culinary event. “
Upon this instruction, the man who had been holding the gun for the last few minutes, handed it over and made for the pile of bonds.
The caterer’s hands were gently pulled behind the chair and with wrists crossed, her wrists were then tied with a long cord, which may have been a dressing gown cord. She winced as the cord bit into her slightly chubby wrists.
“Are you enjoying this ladies?” smiled the man who had done all of the talking.
With no reply, the man continued with his binding. A thin band of fabric was used to pull the poor woman’s arms together above the elbow and then after being cinched used to tie her to the top of the chair. Moving to the front, the man held her ankles together, then paused to insert a wadded up napkin between them before tightly binding them with a scarf. Moving behind and under the chair, he wound the trailing fabric from her wrist tie round her ankles, pulling them gently back and off the floor. A further tie was used to bind her thighs together and this was long enough to be fed under the chair also, to firmly keep the caterer seated.
“A very thorough job you have made of it as usual my friend.”
Poppy had been sobbing throughout the event, but was trying to steel herself.
“Be strong my dear,” said Lady Grassington.
Poppy’s chair was adjusted slightly, so she was facing a huge poster of the very car from which the gear lever had been removed from decades before. The driver, Nuvolari, was waving from his driving position and had a huge beaming smile. Poppy was now lined up with this image, a point that was made by the intruder.
Poppy was tied up in exactly the same way as the caterer. Tightly, securely, but not too roughly. The man took great care and obvious delight in his craft, she also having padded protection added to her ankles.
Soon, she was bound very securely, ankles hitched off the floor.
“Now you Lady Grassington.”
“Please tie Lady Grassington up tightly, but remember, we witnessed her being very unpleasant to this poor caterer.”
Lady Grassington protested, but only received a gloved hand gagging until she calmed down.
“I will get a rug from this old Austin, please continue my good man.”
Lady Grassington was motioned to stand up from her chair, a chair she expected to be securely tied to, as the other two ladies had been. Standing, she had her hands securely tied as she expected behind her back. The man tied her arms above the elbows, forcing her breasts out even more requiring that a couple of buttons be opened to free the strain. A tie was used to bind her ankles, which were once again padded out with a napkin. Finally, a scarf bound her thighs together, just above the knee. This was particularly tight, on account of the shiny skirt, which didn’t help this task.
A very secure Lady Grassington was now motioned to kneel down on a thick rug. Swiftly and thoroughly, a thick starched cotton napkin was forced deep into her mouth, before she realised this was happening. This caused her to buck up and for the first time, show fear in her eyes and brought yelps of protest from the other women. The gagging would seem to have broken the resistance of the proud lady. Next, her beautiful scarf was removed. The man carefully folded it over into a band about three inches wide. Lady Grassington had been trying to spit the wretched napkin out and had partially succeeded, but this effort was in vain, as it was re-stuffed and the scarf pulled tightly over her mouth and with some see-sawing motions, formed a cleave gag. This pulled the napkin even deeper into her mouth and as it was tied off securely at the rear, Lady Grassington was silent and broken.
“My colleague wishes you to lie down on your front Lady Grassington. Please do it.”
With almost no hesitation, she did so, fearing the consequence of resistance.
Soon, she had been placed into a hogtie. It was not a particularly strict hogtie, but secure nonetheless.
She rolled over onto her side, in order to exchange eye contact with Poppy. The two exchanged worried glances that conveyed both fear and hope of a conclusion.
It was not long before the caterer was to suffer the same full gagging. A thick napkin crammed in, followed by a terribly tight cleave from the corporate scarf she had been given to wear.
Poppy was last. She also was to suffer the exact same gagging, but this time, the man who spoke assisted her, by holding her hair out of the way and by verbally reassuring her than she would “get used to the gag” and that she should “relax and let it happen.”
“Well done. An excellent job and an excellent result my friend. Lady Grassington, we did not plan to tie you in such a way, but people like you really need to learn to have more respect for others doing a good job. I wish you to learn this”
“Please unlock the premises and bring round the catering van please,” said the man, fishing the car keys out of the caterer’s pocket.
“We will leave you now. We will take this young lady with us, in order that we can return your vehicle to you once we are at a safe distance and make our escape in a different car. We will leave you tied up in the back of the van until you are discovered during the morning”
The caterer mewed as loudly as her muffled voice could, but she really had no choice in the matter.
Darkness was falling in the hall, as the man returned from bringing the van round.
“In case you two are wondering what will happen to you, we will place a typed notice onto the front door of the village post office, detailing your predicament. This will be read early in the morning and you will be rescued then.”
The three women all made gag music together, mewing and wailing, but nothing discernible could be heard.
“Come on my friend, let us leave now, with our insurance.”
The caterer screamed into her gag again, this time even more loudly, but to no avail, as the two men lifted her chair up and placed it sideways down on to the floor of her van.
Returning to pick up the gun and the rucksack containing the gear lever and now with all the excessive packing material inside, the two men made to leave.
“One last thing to do my friend?”
With this prompt, the quiet man, made over to Poppy and gently patted the girl on her thigh, before moving to Lady Grassington and gently ruffling her hair, much as one would do to a three year old, the pair left.
With the caterer mewing as loudly as her severe gagging would allow, they did indeed pause to attach the note on the post office door.
A few miles further on, the caterer was now released and enjoying a well earned drink of coke as she strived to overcome her binding of earlier.
“It’s getting harder to do this every time,” she said. “I know I tie you up regularly, but you enjoy it! I have taught you too well,” she added as the pair enjoyed a kiss.
The man who had done all of the talking and was now driving, wondered just how much money the baron would give them this time for a successful job. He was talking of holiday destinations and activities to do on them, but he was being ignored by the other two, who were in each other’s arms and not listening to a word he was saying.
“OK you two! I get it.”
They made their escape through the narrow lanes of the borders and by the time the alarm was raised back at the museum, their progress had been substantial, a change of vehicle had been employed and one remote quarry pool hid evidence of a van used in a successful operation.