Jay at Hallowe’en
The groups of kids making their way around the estate were laughing and joking, smiling as they looked into each other’s bags and compared what they had collected. A number of the houses were decorated for Hallowe’en, with candles inside hollowed pumpkins, spider webs on windows and trees, and a few houses clearly indicating they did not wish to take part on this night.
Outside the Boyle home, there were two rows of pumpkin lanterns either side of the door, and the windows were covered in white decorations, the curtains closed behind them and highlighting the effect. Two boys and two girls walked up to the front door and knocked, their mothers watching as the door opened and they called out “Trick or Treat!”
Emma Boyle smiled as she saw them, and said “If it isn’t the Power Rangers! You all look wonderful, so you all deserve a treat.”
“How are the kids, Emma,” one of the mothers said as they looked at the older woman. She was dressed as Morticia Addams, complete with long black hair and a low cut dress that reached the floor.
“Oh they went out earlier with Annie,” Emma said as she indicated the other woman. She was wearing a black boiler suit, leather gloves and a black balaclava, but she smiled as she held the bowl and allowed the kids to take handfuls of sweets.
“Love the costume, Annie. What are you meant to be, a bank robber?”
Annie smiled and nodded as the kids put their sweets into their bags, and said “thank you Mrs Boyle.”
“On you go now,” Emma said, smiling and waving before she closed the door. Her smile disappeared as she looked at Annie, who said in a Scots accent “Ye’re doing well Mrs Boyle. Let’s go an sit doon again.”
As they walked into the front room, Emma looked at the red haired woman in the Catwoman costume, and said “How much longer?”
“Until your husband completes the job we gave him to do, Emma,” one of the four masked men said in a Geordie accent. “Until then, you, your sister and your family will be safe in our hands.”
Emma nodded as she looked at her children. Twelve year old Steve was dressed as Spiderman, while the ten year old twins Carol and Noelle were dressed as Elsa and Anna from Frozen. Carol was wearing the long light blue dress with white gloves, and Noelle the blue dress with a black top. All three, however, had their wrists secured together in front of them with ropes, and their ankles tied as well. Strips of white tape covered their mouths as they watched the television.
Catwoman twisted round – her wrists were further secured to her legs with ropes – as she said “mmmewhtsgnnhpppn?”
“I don’t know, Annie,” Emma said as there was another knock on the door, “I just don’t know…”
“Of course you can go to the party at Cassie’s and stay overnight,” Yvonne Williamson said, “Charlie is going to spend the night with the Cottrell’s anyway – they’re hosting a big night for the local kids.”
Mark smiled as his daughter went out of the room, and Yvonne sat next to him. “So, it appears we have Monday night to ourselves,” she said with a smile. “What do you think we can get up to?”
“Well, I have an idea,” Mark said with a smile, “but I’m not sure how you would feel about it.”
“Oh? And what would that idea be?”
“Why don’t we go Guising, as you would be saying if you were in character?”
Yvonne smiled and said in her broad Scots accent “Nd where de ye fink we’d go guising, Jay?”
Mark stood up and went to the sideboard, returning with a folder. Opening it, he handed Yvonne a picture of a grey haired man, standing with a blonde haired woman, a young boy and twin girls.
“Eddie Boyle? Well, we’ve talked about it before, but Monday’s Hallowe’en. Might be a bit difficult to be quiet and inconspicuous.”
“On the contrary,” Mark said with a smile, “it’s the perfect night. Let me explain why…”
“You look adorable,” Emma said as her daughters came down the stairs, wearing their Disney Princesses outfits.
“Thanks Mum,” Carol said. “Is Steve ready?”
“I’m ready, but I don’t see why I have to go with them,” the twelve year old said as he came out of the main room, the Spiderman Mask covering his head to his nose, his eyes visible.
“Because this way I can keep an eye on all three of you?”
The three kids looked at their Aunt Annie, who was wearing a black spandex catsuit, knee length black leather boots and an eye mask. A pair of cat ears were attached to the band holding back her black hair.
“Right,” Emma said as she opened the door, “go, have fun, and I’ll see you back here in a little while. I’ll be ready then as well, and when your father gets back Aunt Annie will look after you while we go out.”
“Come on, let’s go and have fun,” Annie said as the three children picked up their bags, and headed out, Emma waving them away before she closed the door, and headed up the stairs. She missed the grey van as it drove past, and then around the corner.
Emma looked at herself in the fill length mirror, the long black skirt hugging her body, and smiled.
“Perfect for today,” she said as she turned and picked up a red lipstick, pouting as she applied it – and then staring at the ski masked man who appeared in the reflection behind her.
“Hello Emma – may I call you Emma,” he said in a Geordie accent, “I’m Jay Edwards – and I need you to remain quiet…”
“Jay… Oh my god no,” Emma whispered as she turned round, and saw the rest of the masked group behind Jay, one of them a woman who was smiling.
“Well, I’m not your God,” Jay said quietly, “but believe me, I am Jay Edwards, this is Mrs McPhee, and the rest of my group. Now, I need you to listen very carefully, and to trust me, because so long as you do as we say, everyone gets to have a different experience this Hallowe’en.”
Emma could feel herself shaking, but somehow the way he spoke was making her feel calmer, as she said “What do you want?”
“Well, we need your husband to do a little business for us tonight,” Jay said quietly, “and therefore you and your family will be our hosts for the night. Now, when are you expecting the children home?”
“At about six,” Emma said quietly, “please, don’t hurt them…”
“We hae nae intension o daing that,” Mrs McPhee said in her Scottish accent, “sae lang as they dae as we say tae.”
“May I say your costume is delightful,” Jay said as he took Emma’s arm, “but for now, let us head downstairs, and I will explain what is going to happen? Be assured, you will all eat, drink and be comfortable…”
“Mum – we’re back,” Steve called out, Carol and Noelle following him in as Annie smiled.
“Hey – back from Trick and Treating?”
“Hey Dad,” Carol said as she hugged Eddie Boyle, “we were just going to show Mummy what we got.”
“Well, why don’t we all go in together,” Eddie said as Annie closed the door, “And then we can…”
As he walked into the front room, he stopped as he saw Emma sitting in a chair, and the masked man standing behind her, his hand on her shoulder as the kids ran past him.
“Mummy, look what we…”
Carol and Noelle stopped as they saw the other men, holding guns in their hands, and then the masked woman as she said “Hello kids – cum an sit doon a minute on that couch.”
“What’s going on Emma – oh shit,” Annie said as she came in, and then the room door closed behind them. “Good evening Mister Boyle,” she heard a man with a Geordie accent say, “My name is Jay Edwards, and I have a little task for you to perform tonight.”
“Oh my… Emma, are you all right?”
“I’m scared, but I’m all right. Steve, Carol, Noelle, so what the lady says. They’re not going to hurt you if you do that.”
All three looked at Eddie, who nodded as Jay said “excellent. Now, in a short while you will leave with one of my colleagues, while we stay here with your family. I promise you, they will not be bored.”
“But it’s Hallowe’en – the local kids will all be knocking on the doors soon…”
“And we have a plan for that. For now, sit with your wife, and Auntie can sit in that chair there. Mrs McPhee?”
“Now kids,” the masked woman said as she looked at them, “it’s important that naebody knows we are here, so we need to make sure ye cannae let them know. I want ye to hold these fer me.” From a bag, she drew out three lengths of cord and handed them one each. Steve held it in his hands, and then said “are you going to tie us up?”
“Aye – hands in front and ankles. Now, will ye be the brave boy and let yer sisters see what ae will dae?”
“It’s all right Steve, I think we’ll all end up the same way sooner or later – so let them do it.” Eddie nodded as he handed Mrs McPhee the cord, and watched as she tied his wrists together in front of himself.
“Girls, you can pretend you’ve been captured by the evil Baron,” Annie said, Carol and Noelle nodding as they allowed Mrs McPhee to bind their wrists as well. As this took place, Jay took some cord and bound Annie’s wrists together, saying “I think Catwoman needs to be kept in place too.”
“But when the kids knock…”
“Well,” Mrs McPhee said as she took another length of cord between Steve’s ankles, tightening the binding and then securing the ends together behind his legs, “Ah’ll be takin the place o yer seester end helping. Ankles together, my little princesses.”
As the girls had their ankles secured, Jay crossed and tied Annie’s ankles together, and then further secured her legs below her knees, the rope going around and between her limbs as she watched.
“Now,” Mrs McPhee said as she stood up, “we need all four o ye to be really quiet, so ah’m putting some o this tape oer yer moofs. It willnae hurt, I promise.”
As Emma watched, she tore a strip of wide white tape from the roll and pressed it firmly over the mouths of each of the children, and then passed the tape to Jay, who pressed a last strip over Annie’s mouth as well.
“There we go,” Jay said as he turned the television on. “Now, if people call, Mrs McPhee will go with you to dispense treats Emma. Eddie, I need to talk to you in the kitchen while the others remain in here…”
“There you go,” Emma said as she let the kids take more sweets from the bowl Mrs McPhee was holding, “have a great night.” It was getting darker now, as she looked up and down the street. Moving back in, Mrs McPhee closed the door and looked at Jay as he emerged from the kitchen with Eddie.
“Go with my associate now, and do as he says – we’ll make sure the family are taken care of,” he said with a smile as the two men walked out, and then he escorted Mrs McPhee and Emma back into the front room.
“Ennddthttlt,” Carol whimpered through the tape.
“Ndmmhngree,” Noelle added.
“Very well then,” Mrs McPhee said, “if ah take the tape awa, will ye all promise to be real quiet?”
The three children nodded as she gently peeled the layers of tape away. Looking at Carol, she said “Ah’ll take ye to the toilet, and then Mummy can see about yer supper, awl reet?”
“Thank you,” Carol said as Mrs McPhee untied the rope from her wrists and ankles, and then took her by the hand as they walked out. “Go with Mrs Boyle,” Jay said to one of the other men, “take her to the kitchen and watch her as she cooks some food.”
“What are you going to do once we’ve eaten,” Steve said quietly as he wriggled round.
“Well, you can all watch a film together – but after that, the three of you need to get ready for bed, and we will make sure you cannot get out of the bed or speak very easily. In fact, we’re going to follow the theme of the day, and turn all three of you into little mummies for the night.”
“How will you do that,” Noelle asked as she looked up.
“Oh you’ll see later,” Jay said as Mrs McPhee brought Carol back, allowing her to sit down before she tied her wrists and ankles again. She then headed to the kitchen, returning with three cartons of juice which she put straws in and then handed to the children to drink.
“Whtbbtsss,” Annie asked.
“As – as for you and their mother, you will be allowed to change and then secured as well…”
“Yer ma is cooking Pizza and finger food fer ye all – so wha film would ye like tae watch?”
“Can we watch The Corpse Bride,” Carol asked.
“Why not – and very appropriate for the season,” Jay said with a smile.
One of the masked men brought over the box, opening it and placing it in the player as Annie looked at him. Jay then peeled the tape away from her mouth, watching before she said “what are you asking Eddie to do?”
“A money transfer – no more, no less,” Jay said with a smile as the film began, and Mrs McPhee sat with the three children. After a short while, Emma started to bring through plates with pizza slices, chicken nuggets, garlic bread and other finger foods, as Jay untied Annie’s wrists from her legs.
“I don’t suppose there’s any chance of a glass of wine,” she said as she looked at Emma.
“I think we both need one,” Emma said, “if that is all right with you, Mister Edwards.”
“I think we can allow that – shall I start the film?”
The girls nodded as Steve picked up a slice of pepperoni pizza and started to eat it. Jay nodded to the other masked men, who went up the staircase as he and Mrs McPhee helped to serve, while Emma went back to the kitchen, returning with a bottle of wine and two glasses.
“I do like this film,” Annie said as she held the glass of wine in her hands, and took a sip before she put it on the coffee table, and took a chicken strip to eat. Emma nodded in agreement as the girls sat back, smiling as they ate and watched the movie.
“I have to admit, Tim Burton is a master of this sort of entertainment,” Jay said as he smiled, and then felt his phone vibrate. Taking it out, he said “this is Jay Edwards.
“Good – no problems at this end. Continue with the arrangements.”
Putting the phone away, he said “your father is doing what we have asked him to do, and he has asked me to tell you that you are all brave as well. Are you all feeling better with some food?”
“I am,” Steve said, “but I am a little scared about what’s going to happen later.”
“Dinnae be afraid,” Mrs McPhee said, “it’s all gonna be fine.”
As the end credits rolled, Mrs McPhee looked at Emma and said “we’ll go upstairs, and sort out their jammies. Then they can go up one at a time an haf a baff.”
“At the same time,” Jay said as he untied Annie, “you can help by sitting with whoever is down here. Understand?”
“I understand,” Annie said, “I just want to take my boots off first.” Saying that, she slowly pulled down the zips and slipped the leather boots off, wriggling her stocking covered feet as she did so. “I’ll come and get the first of you soon,” Emma said as she went up the stairs with Mrs McPhee.
“Noo then – get nightclothes out fer all three, and three pairs o socks as wel.”
“Socks - what for?”
“Ye’ll see – now then, efter that, ye can get changed as well.”
Nodding, Emma went into the bedrooms, coming out with two nightdresses and a set of pyjamas, as well as three pairs of white socks. Mrs McPhee then escorted her to her bedroom, watching as she stripped out of her dress and other clothes, and put on a pair of cream silk pyjamas.
“I don’t understand – why am I not more afraid,” she said as she looked at the masked woman.
“Becos ye know we’ll keep oor word – now, who will be first?”
As they went down the stairs, Emma went into the front room and said “who will be first then?”
“We want to go together,” Noelle said as she and Carol looked at the masked man.
“All right then,” Jay said with a smile as Mrs McPhee untied the ankles of the two girls, “on you go now. Steve will have his turn later.”
As they went out, Steve turned to Annie and said “I’ll protect you Aunt Annie.”
“That’s awfully sweet,” Annie said as the girls went upstairs.
“All right then,” Emma said as Mrs McPhee untied Carol’s wrists, “go into the bathroom wash and get changed Carol.”
“All right Mum,” Carol said as she went in, and Noelle said “you’re nice for a lady robber.”
“Well it’s very nice o ye tae say that,” Mrs McPhee said with a smile as they heard the water running. A short while later, Carol came out, wearing a red nightdress with white doves and handing her dress to Emma.
“Yer turn,” Mrs McPhee said as she untied Noelle’s wrists, and let her go into the bathroom, before she took one of the pairs of socks. “Right – we start by putting thes oer yer hands Carol,” she said, Carol watching as she pulled the socks over her hands and up her arms.
“Why have you got your hands covered,” Noelle said as she came out, wearing a blue nightdress with white doves. As she handed the dress to Emma, Mrs McPhee took a second pair of socks and pulled them up over her hands.
“Noo then,” Mrs McPhee said, “we need tae start tae make sure ye spend the night as mummies, so while yer ma hangs yer dresses up, stand in front of me an put yer hands behind yer backs.”
Emma nodded and said “do as she says girls,” as Mrs McPhee took the first length of cord, crossed Carol’s wrists behind her back and began to tie them together. “Oh I see now – it protects our wrists,” Noelle said as she leaned back and watched.
“Amongst oer fings,” Mrs McPhee said as she passed the rope between Carol’s wrists, and then tied the ends off. Picking up the second length of cord, she crossed and bound Noelle’s wrists together.
“Oh my,” Emma said as she came back, “are you going to be all right girls?”
“We’ll be fine Mum – it’s like an adventure,” Carol said as Mrs McPhee tied the rope off. “Now, let’s take both o ye doonstairs, and get wee Steve up here to get ready.”
The two girls nodded as they walked down stairs, Annie putting her hands to her mouth as she saw them walk in. “Are you both all right,” she said quietly, the two girls nodding as they sat down and wriggled a little.
“Your turn, Steve,” Emma said as she watched Jay untie her son’s ankles, and then she took him up the stairs alongside Mrs McPhee. A short while later, he came back down, wearing a pair of grey pyjamas but also with his wrists secured behind his back, his hands covered with white socks.
“See – we’re all the same now,” he said to the two girls, who nodded as he sat down. Mrs McPhee then looked at Annie, as she said “cum wi me dear – time ye changed as well.”
“You can use some of my pyjamas,” Emma said, Annie nodding as she went upstairs with the masked lady. As they went up, Jay handed Emma a pair of socks, and said “I think you need to be in the same way as your children Emma – pull those up over your hands, and then look at them as you put your hands behind your back.”
“It doesn’t hurt Mum – it actually feels kinda nice,” Steve said as Emma pulled the socks on, and then looked at her three children, smiling as Jay crossed her wrists and started to bind them tightly together with fresh rope. He took the rope around and between her arms, snugly securing them before he tied the ends off and tucked them into the bands of rope.
“See, I’m the same as all three of you now,” Emma said as she turned round and wriggled her covered hands. She then heard Annie say “So am I” as she came in, wearing a pair of pink pyjamas and with her wrists bound behind her back as well.
“Now then,” Jay said as he took two longer lengths of rope out and handed one to Mrs McPhee, “I want you to watch what Mrs McPhee and I do to your mum and your aunt. After this, we’re going to do the same to each of you – and this way, your arms are going to be properly secured as well.”
As the girls watched with Steve, the ropes were wrapped around Annie and Emma, forcing their arms into their sides as the bands went above and below their chests, and then were secured behind before the rope was fed under one arm, up and around the back of their neck, and then under the other side.
“You look funny mum,” Steve said as Emma grimaced when the rope was tied off. “Will we look that way?”
“No quite,” Mrs McPhee said, “do ye wanna go fierst?”
“Okay,” Steve said as he stood up, looking at his mother as Mrs McPhee wrapped the rope round his arms and upper body, and her felt them being pulled into his sides. He looked down to see the two bands, before they were tightened in the same way as his mum and aunt, and he felt Mrs McPhee tie the rope off.
“It’s like a big hug,” he said to his sisters, “so let her do it to you as well.”
“He’s so brave,” Annie whispered as Jay made her sit in one seat, and Emma in the other, while Mrs McPhee secured the upper bodies of the twin girls as well. As they sat again on the couch, Mrs McPhee said “Where de ye keep yer sheets?”
“In the cupboard at the top of the stairs,” Emma said as she wriggled round, “why?”
“Ye’ll see,” Mrs McPhee said as she went out of the room, while Jay took more lengths of rope from one of the large duffel bags.
“We need to make sure you can’t walk off the beds when you go up,” he said as he looked at the children, “so I want all three of you to cross your ankles. Mum and Aunt Annie will have this done to them later.” As the girls giggled and crossed their ankles, Steve watched as Jay bound their ankles tightly together, taking the rope around and between their legs. He then smiled at the young boy as he crossed his ankles, and allowed the masked man to tie them together as well, before he tied his legs together below his knees.
“Are you going to that to us as well,” Noelle asked as she tried to move her ankles. Jay smiled as he said “well, we’ll need to move the skirts of you nightdresses back, so I think it’s best if Mrs McPhee does that.”
“Does wha, Jay,” the masked woman said as she carried in three sheets.
“Secure the legs of the young ladies, if you would be so kind,” he said as he handed her two lengths of rope. Nodding, she knelt down and folded back the hem of Carol’s nightdress, binding her legs tightly together before folding the skirt back again. Repeating the process for Noelle, she stood up and said “there – all nicely secured and ready to be little mummies.”
“I can see what you’re going to do,” Annie said as she tried to move her arms – with little success. “Good,” Jay said, “Because before we make them mummies, we have to make sure they stay as quiet as possible. Take a deep breath, all three of you, and stay calm as you open your mouths.”
“Be brave,” Emma said quietly as one by one Mrs McPhee pushed a folded cloth into their mouths, before Jay tied a knotted strip of towel round their heads, the knots between their teeth and keeping the cloths in their mouths. “How can they breathe like that,” Emma said as Jay tied the towelling round Steve’s head.
“Wlllrrhtmm,” Steve said, the girls giggling at the sound of his muffled voice, and then watching as Mrs McPhee picked up a wide roll of white tape, and tore the end free. “This will keep everything in, and it disnae hurt,” she said as she stuck the loose end to Carol’s cheek before wrapping it tightly round her head, sealing her mouth as the gag was made firmer.
Noelle was next, giggling as the tape was torn off and smoothed down before she nudged Carol and said “stffflbqettnw,” then both watching as the band of tape was wrapped round their brother’s head. He looked at them as the tape was smoothed sown, and then at his parents as he realised he was actually getting excited about this.
“So what now,” Emma said as the three children wriggled round.
“Now to be mummies,” Jay said as he laid one of the sheets on the floor, and then lifted Carol onto it as that her head sat at one corner, and her ankles near the opposite one. He then wrapped the sheet tightly round her, tucking it in until only her gagged face was showing, before he took black the white tape and wrapped it round her body at her ankles, legs, waist and chest, the two men lifting her as he did so.
“Lkktmmmemmee,” Carol said as the two men lifted her up, and carried her up the stairs, Mrs McPhee going with them. “She will stay with them until the girls go to sleep,” Jay said as he laid another sheet out, “your turn now Noelle.”
The twin sister nodded as Jay lifted her onto the blanket and wrapped her, the two masked men coming back and lifting her as he taped round the sheet and then carrying her up before he laid the third sheet down, and carried Steve onto it. Once he was wrapped and secured, however, Steve was surprised to be laid on the couch as Jay took his phone out again.
“This is Jay Edwards.
“Good – make sure he is secured, and await my call to go.”
Putting the phone away, he smiled as he looked at the two older women. “Your husband has done as we asked,” he said to Emma, “so relax – we’ll be here a little while longer.”
Emma looked over at her son, as his eyes slowly closed, and said “so where will you leave us?” Jay looked at her and Annie, before saying “on your bed. We’ll make sure neither of you can raise the alarm, but that’s all.”
Annie nodded as she wriggled round, before Jay slapped his head and said “I almost forgot – we left the bowl of sweets outside. I’ll have to make sure Mrs McPhee brings it back in before we go.”
“You care about that sort of detail?”
“My dear Emma,” Jay said with a smile, “is it not obvious we care about every detail? Take young Steve up to his bedroom and make sure he is properly placed on the bed.”
One of the masked men nodded as he lifted the young boy up and carried him up the stairs, passing Mrs McPhee as she came in.
“The wee princesses are asleep,” she said quietly, “an I see wee Steve is as well. The faither?”
“Has done his part,” Jay said, “and so we come to making you both comfortable. Before we go up, however, time for you to both be quiet. Anything you wish to say?”
“Thank you for taking care of my children,” Emma said quietly as she watched Mrs McPhee fold two scarves. “You’re welcome,” Jay said, “now open wide,” smiling as he pushed one of the scarves gently into Emma’s mouth, while Mrs McPhee did the same to Annie. They nodded to each other as a length of towelling was then pulled between their lips, the knot between their teeth and keeping the mouth stuffing into place, and then the white tape was wrapped tightly round their heads, pressing in their cheeks as they found they were effectively muffled.
“Shall we,” Jay said as he indicated the doorway, Emma walking first and Annie following as they went up to the master bedroom. He indicated the bed, the two women sitting side by side as their ankles were secured, and then their legs, before they pushed themselves back and lay facing each other, communicating silently as their ankles were pulled back and secured to their chest ropes.
“Clear everything up,” Jay said quietly as he turned the light off, Emma watching as the adrenaline faded, and her eyes slowly closed…
“Well,” Yvonne said as she and Mark slipped into their house, “that was a profitable evening.”
“Indeed – I hope the kids enjoyed their Hallowe’en as much as we did,” Mark said as he rubbed his head, “want some coffee?”
“Why not,” Yvonne said as she looked at her watch, “it’s too late to go to bed anyway. We could book that Disneyland trip we talked about?”
“Why not – a nice way to spend the February holiday…”
Steve slowly opened his eyes and said “mmmwhruu?” He then remembered the events of the previous night, and looked down at his white wrapped body. With some effort, he managed to sit up and slip off the bed, landing on the floor as he looked at the open door. Slowly, carefully, he managed to push himself along the floor, and then to his sister’s room, the door of which was also open.
The two girls rolled onto their sides and looked at their brother as he said “rgrrlsllrrtrt?”
“Edntknww…” Before he could say anything else, there was the sound of a door opening, and footsteps running up the stairs. Steve managed to turn himself before two policemen appeared, one of them calling “we’ve found the kids” as he came in, the other one heading down the corridor. He knelt next to Steve and unwrapped the tape, easing the soaking wet towel knot from his mouth before he pushed the sponge ball out.
“Are you all right,” he said, Steve nodding as a voice called out “found the others. Get the paramedics up here.”
“Take care of my sisters please – and daddy?”
“He’s fine – you’ll see him soon,” the policeman said as he walked over and sat the twins up, engaging them as a paramedic came in, and began to cut the tape that held the sheet round Steve. “Sheesh,” he said as the sheet fell away, “who did this?”
“His name was Jay Edwards – and they were nice,” he said, the girls nodding as their gags were removed…