Christmas at Heidi’s
Heidi was walking along the side of the pond at Heather’s place, looking out over the ice covered water as some birds tired to land on it. The sky was clear – not a cloud could be seen, and the only sound the animals in the woods surrounding them.
She heard herself laughing at the way the birds skidded over the ice, and wanted to break the surface so they had somewhere to at least swim. Somehow, she knew that was what Heather would want her to do as well, so she picked up a branch that was lying on the ground and slammed the end down hard on the ice.
She watched as the surface cracked, and water began to bubble over at the edge of the shore, the birds somehow knowing what was happening as they skidded and flew over. Heidi smiled as they gathered, and stood with her hands behind her back, watching as the birds tried to get in.
After a while, she started to turn to walk off, and tried to move her wrists – but something was holding them together behind her back. She wasn’t afraid, didn’t panic – she knew who and why, and she smiled as she tried to walk away.
Somehow, however, her steps became harder and harder, as if thick elastic bands had been wrapped around her ankles and stopping her from walking. It felt so right, so natural however, that she just stood still, watching the sky and the woods as she closed her mouth, keeping silent as she just listened to the sounds, and the gentle blow of the wind, even as it started to press on her shoulder and gently move her to and fro, to and fro...
As Heidi opened her eyes, for a moment she wondered if it was still dark – before her was nothing but blackness. She then remembered her mother putting the sleepmask over her eyes, and tried to say “What is it?”
What she heard was “whtsstt,” and then she remembered everything else. The Midnight service, coming home, joking with Cindy, and then...
“Of course,” Amy said as she removed the sleepmask, and untied the knotted scarf that was sitting between Heidi’s lips. As she worked her jaw and sat up, she said “thanks mom – I must have been much more tired than I thought I was last night.”
“You were – you were both asleep as soon as we left. Anyway, hurry up – we’re having pancakes downstairs, and then it’s present time.”
“Gotcha,” she said as she got up and rubbed her wrists, and then headed for the bathroom.
“Merry Christmas,” Dorothy said from the range as Heidi came in, Cindy sitting at the breakfast bar.
“Same to both of you,” Heidi said as she sat down and poured herself a glass of fruit juice.
“Sleep well,” Cindy said as she put her glass down.
“Very – what time is it anyway?”
“Just after eight – Mum and Amy want us to have had something to eat and start to get dressed by nine, but I pointed out one small flaw in their planning.”
“Presents, doofus,” Cindy said as she punched her in the side.
“Oh yeah – forgot about that,” Heidi said as she shook her head.
“I’ll believe that when I see it,” Amy said as she sat down, and Dorothy brought over a large stack of pancakes.
“Dig in both of you,” she said as she went and fetched a pot of coffee. “I want to see an empty plate.”
“So when are people going to start coming round,” Cindy said as she picked up a pancake.
“Well, Blossom and the family have gone to her parents for the holiday, and Margaret, Jack and Alice have gone to Disneyland for the break,” Amy said.
“But Joanne and Suzanne are coming with Alexa, Anne and Kayla, Sarah and Brian with the twins, as well as Veronica, and Natalie with her family - they are all coming for dinner.”
“So we get the day to ourselves?”
“Sort of – I think Natalie may come round earlier.”
“You forgot Chloe and James – we invited them as well, remember?”
“Oh yes – I had forgotten them for a moment. I hear they may have fixed a date for their wedding?”
Heidi and Cindy looked at each other, as Amy said “not that I’m aware of – and would their studies allow them to do that at the moment?”
“Oh don’t worry – love will win out in the end,” Dorothy said as she gave Amy a kiss on her cheek. “Come on – eat up. I know you want to see what you got as presents, O daughter of mine.”
“Who me,” Cindy said with a smile, “I know you’re just as eager, mom.”
“Touché,” Dorothy said with a smile.
The living room had a large Christmas tree in the corner, decorated with tinsel and baubles, as Amy poked at the fire and stoked the flames up.
“So where do you want to start,” Dorothy said with a smile.
“How about this,” Cindy said as she picked up a box and handed it over, “Happy Christmas Mom.”
“Oh – and what have we here,” Dorothy said as she removed the silver paper, and took out a large shawl in gold and white. “Thank you, Cindy – this is wonderful. However did you know I had seen this?”
Amy looked in the other direction as Heidi picked up another box. “This is from me,” she said as she handed it to Cindy.
“Pur moi?” Cindy tore open the box and took out a new grey leather jacket. “Wow – thanks Heidi,” she said as she hugged her sister, “that’s fantastic.”
“Well, you kept going about it for long enough, so I decided you should have it,” Heidi said, before mouthing “thank you” to Amy.
“Let me give you yours from me,” Cindy said as she picked up a package and handed it over, Heidi opening it and taking out a new red leather dress, with short sleeves with a knee length skirt.”
“OH YEAH,” Amy said as she hugged all three of them, and then handed her own mother a parcel, which contained a new cashmere sweater.
“All right, can we get to the silly stuff now?”
“Of course we can,” Amy said as she picked up a Build-a-Bear Workshop stuffed dog, with a pink ribbon round its neck, and handed it to Dorothy.
“Aww, thanks AmyWamy,” she said as they hugged each other, Heidi and Cindy just shaking their heads.
“Are you two ready yet?”
“We’re coming,” Cindy said as she came down, pulling on her jacket over a brown sweater dress. Her suede boots in the same colour came to her knees, while Heidi was wearing a pair of jeans and a white jumper, with a pair of short black leather boots on her feet.
Amy was putting on a long brown coat over her dress, while Dorothy was wearing a cream coloured dress with a black coat over it. “Right – to church,” Dorothy said as they headed off, “Veronica and Suzanne are meeting us there.”
As they rode to the church, Heidi said “have you heard from Fi?”
“Yeah – she got to her grandparents place all right, and she’s having fun with her mom and dad as well.”
“So they actually stayed with her for a holiday?”
“From what she told me,” Cindy said, “her grandfather persuaded them to stick around. I think it may have involved lassos and bandanas...”
Heidi looked at Cindy, and then laughed, shaking her head as they turned into the car park for the church.
As they walked into the foyer, Natalie walked over and hugged them both, while Amy and Dorothy talked to Anna and Kayla.
“What do you think of them,” Natalie said as she lifted the long patterned skirt she was wearing, and showed them the baggy suede boots she was wearing.
“Hang on – Natalie Jenkins, Miss Barefoot for the last three years running, is wearing boots?”
“Yeah, I know – they were a present from my grandmother, and I’m wearing them for her. The fact it’s also freezing with no snow makes it reasonable as well – but trust me, the moment I get home or to your place...”
“Barefoot Nats is back,” Cindy said as she looked at the pendant round Natalie’s neck. It was silver, with a little black stone in the middle.
“That’s nice – who was it a present from?”
Natalie looked round, and then said “Alice – she gave it to me before she went off with her family.”
“Really? That must have been expensive,” Heidi said as she looked at her friend. “Nats, how are things between the two of you?”
“Good,” Natalie said with a smile, and then she looked at both her friends. “Why?”
“We’re curious, that’s all – so are you coming round with us?”
“I’ll ask mum – we’ve opened all our presents, so I’ll see if I can come home with you guys and they can join us later. Big Bro is around, so they’ll be talking navy talk for most of the afternoon anyway.”
“Come on you lot,” Natalie said, “let’s go in...”
As they went in, they saw Suzanne, Joanne and Alexa sitting with Veronica. Suzanne was wearing a red jersey dress, with black boots, while Veronica had on a grey jumper and slacks with grey ankle boots. Joanne and Alexa were both wearing very gaudy Christmas jumpers, with jeans and mid-length felt boots.
As the congregation settled down, and the band started playing, they all turned their attention to the service – while thinking of what might happen afterwards...
“Right – first things first. Coffee,” Veronica said as they all entered the house. “Let me do it – the rest of you, go and sit in the warmth.”
“Amen to that,” Nats said as she hung her coat up, kicked off her boots and walked barefoot into the front room.
“How long,” Veronica said as she looked back.
“Forty five seconds,” Heidi said as she took Cindy’s coat and hung it next to hers. “We’ll go and keep her company.”
“We’ll be in in a minute,” Dorothy called through as the three girls sat in the front room.
“So when are the others getting here?”
“I imagine they’re going to arrive all through the afternoon,” Cindy said as she sat down, taking her boots off and wriggling her hose covered toes as she did so, before tucking her legs under herself as the skirt of her dress covered them.
“Yeah – I wish some of the others were here, but it’s that time of year isn’t it – friends and family and all that.”
“So what else did you get,” Heidi asked.
“Mainly clothes and money,” Nats said, “although Veronica did give me something different.”
“Oh – what?”
“Some rather nice underwear and a camisole top – she’s noticed I’m growing up as well, I think.”
“No – you shock me,” Cindy said as the door opened, and the three older women carried through steaming mugs of hot chocolate for the three already there, and coffee for them.
“We have a little while before the others start to arrive,” Dorothy said as she sat down, “so we have time for a little fun if you girls are interested.”
“Oh,” Nats said, “what sort of fun?”
“Well, Amy and I are going to need to start cooking and being hosts, but Veronica – she may need to be kept under control...”
“Oh no,” Veronica said as she shook her head, “not on my own I’m not. And why me anyway? You know I can help in the kitchen...”
“Not today you don’t – today you relax with everyone else, and if you don’t think you can do that, I’m sure the girls can help in that respect.”
Veronica looked at Heidi, who nodded and said “I’ll join in if that’s what you want – it’s been a while since we tried to free each other anyway.”
“Also,” Cindy said, “you’re the only two wearing pants, which makes it a little more – dignified if you still aren’t free when people arrive.”
“Well, there is that I suppose,” Veronica said with a smile. “We’ll finish our drinks first though, all right?”
“Right,” Cindy said as she stood behind Heidi, and Nats behind Veronica, “we’re going to do something a little different here today. Hands behind your back please?”
“Well, off to a traditional start,” Veronica said, but then she felt her hands been pressed together, palm to palm, and then the tape sticking to her wrists as it was wrapped tightly round both of them, and then down her hands.
Looking over, she saw that Cindy had folded Heidi’s arms behind her back, and was taping her wrists to her elbows, but keeping her fingers uncovered.
She then watched as ropes were used to bind her arms to her upper body, above and below her chest, her jumper stretching over her body as the ropes were pulled tighter, then cinched by taking the rope under one arm, up and around the back of her neck, and under the other arm. Looking over, she saw Heidi’s upper arms been tied to her body by a similar band of rope.
“All right ladies, be seated,” Nats said, both of them sitting and watching as their ankles were crossed and secured, and then their legs above and below their knees.
“Okay – so I guess it’s up to Heidi to try and free me, right,” Veronica said as she tried to move her hands.
“It is – but we’ll make it more difficult,” Cindy said as she helped Heidi to move to the other side of the room, and then used a scarf to blindfold her.
“You’ll have to direct her over,” Natalie said, “as best you can with something stopping you talking.”
“And that something is... Where did you get that?”
“No comment,” Natalie said as she eased the white waffle ball into Veronica’s mouth, and then fastened the thin leather straps around her head. Heidi had a folded cloth pushed into her mouth, and then her lips covered with strips of the duct tape.
“How are they – Natalie, where did you get that,” Dorothy said as she came in and looked at Veronica.
“Thsstwwhteentttnn,” Veronica mumbled as the ball held her tongue down.
“I may have found it at Aunt Heather’s place,” Natalie said with a smile as she and Cindy sat down.
“Whenever you’re ready,” Cindy said as they watched their captives moving about.
A thin line of drool was already starting to fall down Veronica’s chin as Heidi started to shuffle across the floor – but in the wrong direction.
“I’ll get that,” Dorothy said as she heard the front door, and as she opened it she saw Brian and Sarah, Brian carrying the twins while Sarah had a large holdall in her hand.
“I hope we’re not too early,” Brian said as he came in, “we brought a play pen with us for them to sit in for a while.”
“No, you’re not too early,” Amy said as she came out, “what’s the situation in the front room?”
“Possibly not the best place,” Dorothy said, Sarah putting the bag down and looking for herself.
“Probably not, no – can we set up in the dining room?”
“Yeah – come on in and I’ll make some fresh coffee,” Amy said as in the other room, Heidi inched closer to her aunt...
“Look at them,” Dorothy said as Sarah and Bart crawled round the portable playpen, picking up the toys that were inside, “they’re growing so fast.”
“I know – I can’t believe it when I look at them,” Brian said as he held his mug. “They’ll be walking and starting to talk before we know it.”
“I’m just grateful for the day off,” Sarah said as she sat down, “so long as there are plenty of willing baby sitters.”
“Oh come on – their first Christmas? And they look so lovely in their outfits,” Amy said as she looked at Bart in his cream and red jumper and blue jeans, and Sarah in a little pink dress.
In the front room, Veronica called out “Ysstlsst,” the drool running down her cheek as Heidi finally bumped into her. “ltmllndwn.”
She turned round, Nats and Cindy watching, and let her head slide down until Heidi’s fingers felt the leather strap against her cheek. “ekkeeevgtt,” she mumbled as Veronica slowly turned her head, Heidi feeling until she found the buckle and started to loosen the wiffle ball gag.
Eventually, Veronica shook the ball out, letting it drop to the floor as she gasped “Natalie, that was cruel.”
“Not especially, Veronica,” Natalie said with a smile, “so now what?”
“Stay still Heidi,” Veronica said as she got onto her knees, and started to use ehr teeth to unravel the tape holding her wrists to her elbows. Slowly, she managed to loosen the binding enough for Heidi to wriggle her hands free, and then turned round, watching as Heidi brought her hands round and started to untie her aunt’s arms.
As Veronica finally shook her arms free, both of them untied the ropes from each other’s upper arms and chest, and then released their own legs before Heidi removed her gag.
“Okay, that worked up an appetite – hi Sarah, where are the twins?”
“Playing in the dining room – which is where you all need to come now,” Sarah said. “Dorothy has some soup and crusty bread out for all of us.”
“Sounds good to me,” Veronica said as she stood up, Cindy tidying up before they all came through.
“Thanks mum,” Cindy said as she pushed her bowl away, “that was great.”
“Well, that’s it until the meal tonight,” Dorothy said as they heard a knock on the front door.
“I’ll go,” Brian said as he stood up, and returned with Anne and Kayla. Anne was wearing a black jersey dress and heels, with a black jacket over it, while Kayla had on a red jumper and slacks, with ankle boots made from red leather.
“Hey – we brought presents, but left them out in the hallway,” Anne said as she sat down, and looked at Sarah. “The babies enjoying their first Christmas?”
“I don’t think they know what’s hit them,” Brian said with a smile, “all the toys and clothes that they have been given.”
“Or us – how many sets of culinary items do we need?”
“Married couples problem,” Amy said with a smile as she looked at Dorothy. “We swore this year none of us were getting anything to do with the kitchen or eating.”
She then looked at Anne, before saying “although gifts from others are more than welcome.”
“Nice recovery,” Kayla said with a smile. “So what are we going to do this afternoon?”
“Well, Dorothy and I are cooking,” Amy said, “but I’m sure between yourselves you’ll find something to keep you occupied.”
“Hey – where is everyone?”
“In the dining room,” Amy called out, as Suzanne came in, hugging Dorothy and Cindy before she took her coat off.
“It’s freezing out there – you should see how well wrapped up Joanne and Alexa are.”
“Where are they anyway,” Cindy said as she looked round.”
“Outside – can you three girls go out and give them a hand? I don’t think they’re in a position to do much about removing their coats – on which note, I need to talk to all of you.”
“That’s our cue to leave the adults alone,” Nats said as they went out to where Joanne and Alexa were standing in the hallway, their bodies covered with long winter coats that went down to their feet, the hoods up over their heads and large scarves covering the lower half of their heads.
“Merry Christmas Cuz,” Cindy said as she looked at them, and realised the arms of their coats were tucked into the side pockets. “Oh no, don’t tell me...”
The two older girls looked at each other and nodded as Nats and Heidi unfastened their coats and slipped them off their shoulders. Both girls had their arms folded behind their backs, wrists tied to elbows, and forearms secured together, while there were bands of ropes around their upper arms, going above and below their chests to keep them locked in place.
Even funnier, their legs were tied together below their knees, with a length of rope between their legs, as they looked at the girls over their scarves.
“Okay,” Cindy said quietly, “want to take bets on what’s under there?”
“Let’s see,” Heidi said as she looked at them, “I’d go for stuffing and tape.”
“Possibly, but this is the older generation we are talking about,” Nats said as she looked at them, “so I think they’ve got a ball in their mouths.”
“Well, only one way to find out,” Cindy said as she walked behind her cousin and removed the gag – to find a leather panel covering her mouth, the straps running round her head to keep it in place.
“Very kinky,” Nats said as the scarf was removed from Alexa’s head to reveal a similar black panel. “Want us to remove them?”
Joanne and Alexa both shook their heads as they walked into the front room – and it was then that Cindy got a good look at their hands.
Specifically, their left hands.
“Oh... My... GOD!!!”
“Cindy? What’s up?”
The young girl walked quickly in front of the two older girls, and said “are they what I think they are?”
Joanne and Alexa nodded as Cindy gasped “And Aunt Suzanne knows?”
They nodded again as Heidi walked round and looked at their hands.
“I can’t see why... Oh. OH – now I get it.”
“Someone fill me in,” Nats said as she looked at the two girls.
“Third finger left hand,” Cindy called out as she ran into the kitchen, and Nats looked at Heidi.
“Sorry, am I just being particularly dim?”
“Not so, mon ami – it is the Christmas spirit that hides the obvious.”
“Chloe, James – I didn’t hear you come in,” Heidi said as she looked at the young couple. Chloe was wearing her usual red scarf, but this time under a blue v-necked sweater which sat on top of a long red velvet skirt, her black boots showing under the hem. James was wearing a blue shirt and dark pants, as he looked at Joanne and Alexa.
“Chloe told me – congratulations, both of you,” he said as he walked up and hugged both of them.
“Fnnku,” Alexa said as Nats saw her blush, and then hit her forehead with her hand.
“Oh lord forgive me, I am so stupid – when did she ask you?”
“Twlflftdee,” Alexa said as she looked at the clock.
“Right,” Dorothy said as she came in with a bottle of champagne, “This was for before dinner, but with news like this – oh for the love of... Heidi, Nats, untie the engaged couple so that we can toast the good news.”
“Finally,” Joanne said as Chloe unbuckled the panel, the rubber bung dripping saliva as it was eased from her mouth, “I told you the youngsters would take an age to get it, lover.”
“Yeah, I know,” Alexa said as she worked her mouth, “but it was worth it for the look on their faces.”
“So does this mean you will tie the knot,” Dorothy said.
“Not in the formal sense,” Joanne said, “but we may do the same sort of thing you and Amy did, Aunt Dorothy – just without the surprise of not telling each other.”
“Well, this time we want to be there,” Heidi said, the other two girls nodding as Amy and the others came in.
“Of course – you’re getting old enough for some of the things that happened then anyway.”
“Not all of them,” Amy said with a laugh, “not yet anyway.”
“So who else knows – apart from us and Chloe, I mean?”
“We haven’t told anyone else yet – and we need to tell Alexa’s parents at some point,” Joanne said, “so don’t tell the others please.”
“Not even my folks?”
“Oh yeah – you’ll need to tell them,” Alexa said, “but that’s it.”
Each of them took a glass of champagne, as Suzanne said “I thought this might take a little while longer, but hey – to Joanne and Alexa!”
“JOANNE AND ALEXA!!!”
The young couple blushed and held hands as everyone cheered them, and then sat down as the door bell rang.
“I’ll get it,” Cindy said as she went to the door, opening it to find Heather and Roberta standing in the doorway.
“Hey – come away in,” she said as she held the door open.
“Thanks – so who else is still to come,” Roberta said as she took off her coat to reveal a black jersey dress and shoes.
“Just Katherine and the rest of Nat’s family,” Cindy said as Heather took off her old brown coat, to reveal a green and brown checked skirt and a white blouse. “You actually wore sandals today Heather.”
“Only to drive in,” she said with a smile as she kicked them off, joining her mother as they walked into the front room. “Champagne? Are we starting early?”
“Not really – Joanne and Alexa are engaged.”
“Really? Congratulations to both of you,” Roberta said as she hugged them.
“It’s a beautiful afternoon out there,” Nats said as she looked out of the window, “Why don’t we go into the back yard and build something with the snow?”
“Oh? Any suggestions?”
“Yeah – no shoes or boots,” Natalie said as she walked through to the kitchen, smiling as she opened the back door and went out into the snow covered garden.
“I’ll come with you,” Heather said as she followed her niece out, the other girls removing their boots, shoes and socks before joining them.
“Would you care to come out as well,” Chloe said as she looked at Joanne and Alexa.
“No – I think we may need some foot baths for when they come in,” Joanne said with a smile.
“Why do I let you talk me into these things,” Heidi said as she and Cindy walked in the snow.
“Oh don’t worry – they’ll stop tingling in a little while, and hot footbaths are made for times like these,” Heather said as she looked at a park bench at the far side of the garden.
Heidi and Cindy started to roll some of the snow into a large ball, as Natalie whispered to her aunt. Heather nodded and disappeared back into the house, handing something to Natalie as she came back out.
“So what do you think – a snowman or a snowdog,” Cindy said as she looked at Heidi.
“Oh please – do we have to go through THAT again,” Heidi said as she rolled her eyes – and then said “HEY” as Heater slipped a sleep mask over them, and pulled her hands behind her back.
“What’s going on,” Cindy called out as her world was plunged into darkness, and she felt tape being used to secure her wrists behind her back.
“That’s what I want to know,” Heidi said as the tape was smoothed down over her own wrists – and then over her mouth, the muffled sounds from Cindy the only indication she too had been gagged.
“Now then,” Heather said quietly, “let’s go for a little walk together – a trust walk – and we’ll see how it feels under your feet, and what you can hear rather than see.”
The two girls had no choice as they were led along, the snow crunching under their bare feet before they stopped and listened. There was the sound of traffic outside, but as they did at Heather’s farm both girls listened carefully to the other sounds – the birds chirping in the nearby trees, and a scuttling sound.
“Whstthttt,” Heidi mumbled as she turned her head to Natalie.
“Looks like a squirrel or something,” Nats said as she and Heather watched the red tailed creature running up the tree.
“I thought they stayed indoors,” Heather said.
“At the farm they probably do, but in the urban areas they sometimes scave... Hey who did that?”
Heather turned to see Nat’s mother pulling her daughter’s wrists behind her back, and taping them together after she had pulled the sleep mask over her own eyes.
“Where are the men?”
“Talking to Brian inside,” Katherine Jenkins said as she tore the tape free.
“Mum? I should have...”
“Lips together,” Katherine said before she taped over Natalie’s mouth, and said “can you help me take them on the next part of the walk, Heather?”
“Why I would be delighted,” Heidi heard Nat’s aunt say as they continued their walk through the snow, her toes starting to tingle before she felt the floor of the kitchen under her, and then carpet before she was sat down, and her feet lifted into a blissfully warm foot bath.
“Htthsflsssgdd,” she heard Natalie say as the other two girls were sat down.
“You let your feet soak now,” Heidi heard her mother say, “and get some feeling back in them. Ladies, we shall talk in the kitchen.”
“So how are you Katherine,” Sarah said as she handed her a mug of coffee.
“I’m fine thanks – the babies enjoying Christmas?”
“I think they just see it as another play day today,” Brian said with a smile as he looked at them in the playpen.
“Well, this time next year they may see it differently,” Heather said as she looked at them. “They are growing up so fast now.”
“Tell me about it,” Sarah said. “By the way, did I really see a stuffed dog in the front room with a ribbon round its neck?”
“Yeah – it was a silly present from Dorothy to me,” Amy said with a smile.
“Not quite as silly as the one she got me though,” Dorothy said.
“Oh yeah? Care to prove it?”
Dorothy closed the oven door, having deposited the turkey inside, and said “One minute.”
The adults waited as Dorothy left the room, and then returned with what looked like a Raggedy Anne doll, but dressed in a pinstripe jacket and skirt.
“It’s a stress relief doll,” Amy said, “for when tax season comes round again.”
“And if this year is anything like the last years, I’ll need it,” Dorothy said as she passed it round. “So what did you get Sarah?”
“Brian bought me this beautiful pair of diamond earrings,” Sarah said quietly, “and I got him a new watch for formal wear. We also booked ourselves on a long break in California when the weather warms up a bit – I’ve always wanted to go there.”
“What about you two,” Dorothy said as she looked at Chloe and James.
“Well, we fly tomorrow to Paris,” James said, “to visit Chloe’s parents. I understand we may have a second Christmas there.”
“And it has the advantage of Sue not been with us,” Chloe said with a smile.
“Which is also a blessing,” Anne said as she sat next to Kayla. “We’re joining her for New Year – all she’ll say is it will be exciting.”
The knock on the front door made Veronica look up. “I thought we were all here,” she said as Amy stood up.
“We are,” Amy said, “this is just a little surprise for those three in there...”
“Whtsgngnn,” Natalie said as she felt someone lift her feet out of the water, and a soft towel wrapped around them as whoever was there started to gently dry her feet and legs.
“Vrryygddqschn,” she heard Heidi say before she sighed, and she felt the hands gently rubbing the towel over her feet and ankles, the cotton warm on her skin. She heard Cindy sigh as well, and sat back, enjoying the caress as she sighed in unison with the other two.
She didn’t even object as she felt the tape being wrapped round her ankles, securing them together, as well as her legs below her knees. She could tell from the sounds the other two were receiving the same care and attention, so why should she object?
In fact, as she sat back and felt the fingers start to gently massage her feet, she wondered who it was. Her mother? Her Aunt? Veronica? Maybe one of the older girls?
“Hmmssggddd,” she moaned as the fingers eased away the knots in the soles of her feet, Heidi and Cindy moaning as well, it felt so good...
The tracing of the finger tip up the soles of her feet made her giggle a little, as it was repeated a few times on both feet – but it was the touch of lips on her toes that made her jump, and then the gentle sucking on each toe in turn.
“Whssdngthshsss,” she said as she shook her head, and managed to dislodge the sleep mask – her eyes widening when she saw who was administering such care to each of them.
“Surprise,” Alice said as she looked up, both Heidi and Cindy turning their heads as they heard her voice. “We came back yesterday, but I kinda sorta forgot to tell you or your parents. Now, you come with me.”
“I thought you were away for the whole holiday period,” Amy said as the ladies sat with Margaret.
“That was the original plan,” Margaret said as she sipped her coffee, “but then Jack got landed with the promotion, and he has to be on duty tomorrow. So we cut the holiday short, had a quiet time today and we’ll have dinner tonight.”
“Well, we’re glad you came round anyway,” Veronica said as they heard someone jumping across the floor in the hallway, “and I’m sure Natalie will appreciate the surprise as well.”
“Are those two...”
“Want an honest answer?” Katherine sipped her coffee as she said “I have no idea, and if they’re happy, who am I to interfere?”
“Well said,” Anne replied as she stood up. “What about Heidi and Cindy?”
“Oh they’ll find out soon enough...”
Heidi shook the blindfold off to see a very familiar young man gently massaging her feet.
“Hlldff,” she said, smiling under the tape as Dave came closer and kissed her gagged lips.
“Merry Christmas Heidi,” he said as he peeled the tape away, “hope you don’t mind me dropping in with a present for you.”
“Now why on earth would I mind that,” she said with a smile, and then looked to the side. “Where did Nats go?”
“Oh someone wanted a quiet word with her,” Dave said as Cindy mumbled “Fthtssddf, hsswfmm?”
“Hllkkrlll,” Cindy said, her eyelids fluttering as Karl removed the tape and kissed her as well.
“So, what say we untie you, you can dry your feet, and then we can give you our presents?”
“Sounds good to me,” Cindy said as she looked into Karl’s eyes.
“So you made Lieutenant?”
“I did indeed,” Jack said as he stood in the other room with Brian, Steve Jenkins and James. “Unexpected, but it means a shorter holiday than planned.”
“I don’t think Alice minds too much, does she?”
“Not really no – it was her idea to come round and surprise everyone this afternoon as well. Not sure why though.”
“So you’re heading to France, James?”
“I am indeed Brian – ever been there?”
“I may have been – I would advise been open to trying new foods.”
“Oh I’m ready for that – and I’m told Paris is quite a place to be on New Year’s Eve anyway.”
“Hey,” Kayla said as she touched Anne’s arm, and indicated she should follow her.
As they left the kitchen, Kayla gently kissed Anne on the lips, and said “think they’ll miss us for a few minutes?”
“No, I don’t think they will – why do you ask?”
“Chloe – are you ready?”
“I am mes amies – if you will come with me please?”
She led them to the library, and opened the door, only to pause as she said “ah – forgive me” and close the door again.
“Someone in there?”
“Indeed – Natalie and Alice,” she said, “let us head upstairs instead.”
The trio climbed the stairs, and entered a spare bedroom, Chloe smiling as she put the bag she was carrying down. “So, if you would decide how you wish to be?”
Kayla smiled as she slowly stripped Anne of her jacket and dress, revealing her black lace bra and thong, before turning her round and taking a length of silk rope from Chloe.
“Hmm,” Anne said, her eyes closed as the rope forced her wrists together, “that does feel good.”
“Hush,” Kayla said as she bound Anne’s wrists, and then her elbows, before she removed her own clothes and wrapped her arms around Anne. Chloe took a further length of rope and bound Kayla’s wrists together, before she linked them to Anne’s.
“Now,” she said as she took out more rope, and started to bind their legs together, “I believe you wish only the cleave gag, correct?”
“That’s right,” Anne said as she felt her legs been pulled together with Kayla’s, and then opened her mouth to accept the rolled up silk scarf, smiling as she closed her lips over it and Chloe tied it around her head.
She then gagged Kayla, and left them in the room as the two lovers stated to kiss each other.
Walking down the stairs, she saw Natalie and Alice emerge from the other room.
“So, I trust you are both happy to see each other,” she said as she reached the bottom of the stairs.
“Yeah – look...”
“Ah there you two are,” Heather said as she came out, “can you come and give me a hand with the vegetables?”
“Of course,” they said as Heidi and Cindy came out with Dave and Alex.
“Boys, the men folk are having a drink in the other room – feel free to join them.”
“Thanks,” they said as they went into the room, the four girls following Heather into the kitchen. “Right – Heidi and Cindy on potatoes, Natalie and Alice on side dishes.”
“And what are you going to be doing,” Heidi said as she looked at her mother.
“We’re going to sit here and put the world to rights before dinner,” Dorothy said as she opened another bottle of wine. “Alice, you and your parents are staying – no excuses.”
“That was an amazing meal,” Jack said as he pushed his pudding bowl away, and looked round the table. “I say we thank Dorothy and Amy, for their generosity and their excellent cooking.”
“Here here,” the group round the table said as they clapped and cheered.
“Thank you,” Amy said, “but now we’d better clear up.
“Oh no you don’t,” Anne said as she wiped her mouth, “you are not doing another bit of work this evening – the men can do the washing up, and we’ll clear the table up.”
“We will,” Brian said as he looked at Sarah.
“You will,” Sarah said as she and Anne stood up, “and we’re going to make sure these two get the rest they deserve now.”
“Why do I get the feeling this is not a matter for discussion,” Dorothy said as she saw Anne collect some lengths of rope.
“Correct – both of you stand up and put your hands behind your back,” Anne said, as she and Sarah moved behind them.
“I don’t think we do,” Dorothy said as she felt her wrists being drawn together, and then the rope round her waist holding them firmly in place. She then felt the rope around her upper body and arms, as they were snugly forced into place.
“Into the front room with both of you,” Anne said, the two mothers walking in as Heidi made to stand up.
“Uh uh,” Dave said as he stood up and put his hands on Heidi’s shoulders. “We have instructions to make sure your four do not interfere in the clean up either.”
“Us? Interfere in clearing plates away? Is that likely?”
“Never the less,” Karl said as he held up a roll of duct tape, “all four of you, sit down, and arms by the side of the chairs you are sitting in.”
“I guess so,” Amy said as she looked at her bound ankles and legs, her feet resting on the footstool next to Dorothy’s bound limbs. “So what are we going to do while you clear up?”
“Watch a film,” Susan said as she pressed the micropore tape over Amy’s mouth, and then gagged Dorothy in the same way, before putting White Christmas into the Blu-ray player.
“There,” Dave said as he looked at Heidi, Cindy, Nats and Alice, with their arms taped to the chair back, and their ankles taped to the rear legs of the chair, their bare feet secured.
“Whyremffffrssscksnshss,” Cindy said as she looked at Karl.
He merely smiled as he held up the duck feathers...
The women smiled as Amy and Dorothy sang along to Danny Kaye and Bing Crosby, the film coming to an end.
“Sounds as if they are having fun in there as well,” Joanne said as she sat with Alexa.
“Yeah – so happy?”
“Very much so,” Joanne said as she rested her head on Alexa’s shoulder.
“They seem to be very happy,” Anne said as she held Kayla’s hand.
“I think they will be – but I forgot to say something earlier,” Kayla whispered.
“Oh – and what was that?”
“Thank you,” Kayla whispered as she kissed Anne, “for making me who I was meant to be.”
“Well, that’s everything cleaned and put away,” Brian said as he put the last dish away, and then took a bottle of beer from James. “And it sounds as if they are happy in there.”
“Both groups,” Jack said as he sat down. “I think you’re gonna have a good time next week though.”
“Scares the life out of me,” James said quietly. “No disrespect, Brian, but you and Sarah don’t have any family for each other to meet.”
“None taken – but the first time I met Lord and Lady Holderness, I was as nervous as hell.”
“I can imagine,” Jack said, “British nobility and all that.”
“Oh – and how were you when you first met Margaret’s... Ah, right. Sorry.”
“Hey, no need to apologise,” Jack said, “it was actually the first Christmas after I freed her. Her father and I had a very, VERY long chat that evening, I can tell you.”
“Thanks,” Cindy said as Karl finally untied her from the chair, “Goose feathers?”
“Nice touch,” Nats said as she gave Dave a kiss on his cheek. “So shall we go and see what the rest of the crowd are up to?”
Walking into the room, they saw their mothers, cousins and relatives all sitting down, watching as Dorothy and Amy rubbed their wrists.
“It’s started snowing outside,” Roberta said as she looked out of the window, “who wants to go and stand in it?”
The group looked at each other, and then went as one through the kitchen, the men watching as they all stood in the back yard, looking up at the white flakes as they cam down from the grey-blue sky.
“It is so beautiful,” Chloe said as James put his arm round her.
“I do so love this time of year,” Heather said as she looked at her mother.
“Yeah – do you think you’re going to get back to the farm tonight?”
Looking up, Heather shook her head and said “Nope – not if this keeps up. Can I bunk down with you tonight?”
“Sure,” Roberta said as Dorothy looked at Sarah and Brian.
“You’d better stay here with the twins tonight as well. We can get ahold of a travel cot if you want?”
“Thanks – that would be great,” Sarah said as Bart reached up to try and grab a snowflake.
“All right – everyone in,” Amy said quietly, “let’s get some warm drinks sorted out before everyone goes.”
As they walked into the front room, Natalie said “Mom, is it all right if Alice and I stop over here overnight?”
“Please, Mom,” Alice said as she looked at Jack and Margaret.
“Well, I guess so – could be crowded here though.”
“It’s all right,” Dorothy said, “They can share one of the girl’s rooms while Sarah and Brian use the spare bedroom.”
“Great – old fashioned sleepover?”
“Not quite – more like the Holderness Full Job.”
“Oh boy,” Cindy said as she looked at the other two, “nice quiet night then...”
“All right,” Veronica said to the four girls, “you sure you want to go ahead with this?”
“We do,” Natalie said as she stood in the white nightdress, which came to just below her knees, while Alice was wearing a pink top and knee length pants. They had both borrowed the clothes from Heidi, who was wearing a pair of cotton pyjamas, while Cindy had on a green sleepsuit with booties.
“All right then – hands out please,” Amy said as she gave them each sponges to hold in their hands, and then taped their fists into silver balls, before Dorothy pulled clean sports socks up their arms and used white medical tape to secure the tops to their limbs.
They then turned and crossed their arms behind their backs, talking to each other as their wrists were secured together and then to their backs with ropes around their waists. Veronica then tied their arms to their sides with longer ropes, the bands sitting above and below their chests as they wriggled round.
“I wonder if you girls are enjoying how that feels a little too much now,” Dorothy said as they turned round, and sat on the edge of the bed.
“Don’t worry Mom,” Cindy said, “the boys don’t do it to us...”
“If they did, would you tell us,” Dorothy said as he crossed and bound Cindy’s ankles together, before moving on to Heidi.
“Good question,” Cindy giggled as Amy tied her legs together below the knees.
“Right – once we start this, no turning back, understand?”
“Got it – and thanks Mom.”
Amy took the folded cloths and put one into each of their mouths, before Veronica used some knotted strips of towels as cleave gags, and Dorothy wrapped the white micropore tape around their heads.
“Close your eyes now,” Amy said as she pressed cotton wool pads on strips of micropore tape, using them to blindfold the four girls, as Dorothy tied folded scarves over their mouths, and then slipped a pair of earplugs into place. Finally Veronica used four headscarves to cover their hair, tying the ends under their chins before they were all laid on their stomachs, and their ankles secured to their chest ropes.
“Think they’ll be all right,” Veronica said as they closed the door.
Heidi was already back at the pond near Heather’s place, dreaming of sitting with Dave and Cindy and Karl as Nats and Alice swam in the clear water...