The Games Player – A Long Game
To say I had planned for this trip would be an understatement, because this was going to be more than just a visit to play a game of Hostages. I had discussed this particular visit for some time with Janna, and she had even offered to come and help, but it was important I carried this one out myself.
The target was the manor house of the village of Little Mount, near Derby, and I was aware there was going to be a gathering of friends for April and Melissa Mount, the daughters of Sir Kenneth and Dame Donna Mount. Sir Kenneth was away on business, so I wanted time to fully explore the house – have the need for additional time.
I was also aware, from exploring a certain chat board, that April and her friends liked to play games, and her mother often helped them – which was going to make my job a little easier…
It was just after midday, and I was sitting in my car when I saw April walk by with her friends, heading for the Manor House. She had long light brown hair, and was wearing a sleeveless white padded jerkin with a fur lined hood over a pink and white checked blouse, jeans and brown felt mid-calf boots with a white fur trim. Her friends all seemed to be about the same age – one had short dark brown hair, and was also wearing a sleeveless hooded jerkin – pink in her case, over a white blouse with a pink tartan pattern, dark blue jeans and purple boots with big buttons on the side. The second friend had long light brown hair, and was wearing a pink striped top over a black sweater, a beige corduroy skirt, white tights and Nordic print socks with brown Ugg boots with a white fur top. The final girl had long dark brown hair, a white scarf wrapped round her neck over a pink striped jumper, grey jeans and brown mid-calf leather boots with a white fur trim.
They were talking together as they walked along, me following with a rucksack on my back as they turned to go into the road to the manor house. I followed them, watching as they went into the front door, before I moved to the rear of the house and let myself in – pulling the stocking mask down over my head before I did so. IU could hear talking down the corridor, so I walked slowly down and looked through the door as an older woman said “you know the rules of the house, April – I have to do some work, so you all need to remain quiet.”
“Got it Mum. January, you take care of June first, and I’ll start with May after Mum gags us.”
I looked in to see Donna Mount standing by a couch. She had long blonde hair, and was wearing a leopard skin dress with a round neckline and short sleeves, dark hose and heels. But, to my amusement, she was rolling up a black silk scarf as her daughter opened her mouth, and then let it be pulled between her lips as Donna tied it round her head.
The other three girls were standing next to her, and each of them in turn opened their mouths and allowed April’s mother to gag them with rolled up black scarves. April then turned and picked up from the couch two lengths of white rope and handed the second one to the girl with the pink jerkin, before they stood behind the other two girls. I therefore realised the girl with the rope was January, and given she stood behind the one with the white scarf that must be June – making the girl in the white jerkin May.
They tied the other two girls’ wrists together behind their back, before April took more rope and secured January’s wrists – then allowed her mother to bind her own wrists behind her back before she said “Enjoy yourselves”. I stepped back and watched as she walked down the corridor, smiling to myself as I heard the four girls talk to each other.
So imagine the look on their faces when I walked in and said “well now – I see you started the game of Robbers before I got here.”
Were they scared? Nope. Did they remain still? Nope. Instead, April looked at me and said “Hmmghhdddhtsuhh” as the other three nodded.
“Me? Who do you think I am?”
“Thghmsphllhrrr – whrhdduhrbhrdd.”
“Yes, I know,” I said with a smile, “so let me answer your questions. Yes, I am here to rob the manor house. Yes, you are going to be tied up and gagged – but I promise, it won’t hurt, and you can still treat it as a game.”
“Whllhhffrrhnph,” January said as she twisted round.
“Well, this is a special day,” I said with a smile, “because I need to stay a while. So, let me start by making sure your four stay here, and then I can go and take care of your big sister.”
“So much the better,” I said as I looked at April. “So, why don’t you all sit on the couch – then I will take off your boots, and secure your ankles together.”
“Hwmsswhluhthhs,” May said as the four girls sat on the couch, and I removed their boots, leaving them on the floor.
“For now, just your legs,” I said with a smile, “but later, before I go, if you want I’ll make sure you really cannot escape.”
All four nodded, as one by one I used ropes to secure their ankles together, while I noticed the corners of their gags getting wetter in their mouths. I then stood up and turned the television on, leaving them as I said “now don’t move – I’m sure you won’t be the last ones to end up in here.”
“Fhnkuushnsh” June said as they all wriggled round, and I left the room with my rucksack. April was right – before I went to see her mother, there was the small matter of Melissa Mount to deal with.
I then heard Donna again, saying “you need to do your work before I can let you go” and coming out of another room before she walked away from me. I waited until she went out of eyesight, and then walked slowly down the corridor to look in the other room.
Melissa Mount was sixteen, and was sat at a table in a high backed chair – but I could see the black scarf which was also tied round her head, trapping her long dark brown hair against her head with the knotted ends at the base of her neck. She was wearing a cap sleeved dark blue t-shirt and faded jeans, and I could see as I came in the pen in her hand.
I walked slowly over to see the books on the table, the notepad she was writing in, and the black scarf between her lips, before I said “well, I’ve heard of silent study, but this is ridiculous.”
She suddenly turned round and saw me, but before she could scream or make any sort of muted call I put my gloved hand over her mouth, and said “listen – I’m not going to hurt you, but I am going to make sure everyone in this house is secure and quiet – including your mother. So I want you to remain calm, and you’ll be fine.”
“I’m called the Games Player.”
She looked at me, and said “fhrrmhththbhrdd?”
“The very same – so, Melissa, here’s the thing. I am going to be here a while, and you have work to do, so I’m going to tie you to the chair but keep your hands free. If I have your word you will not take the scarf out and keep quiet, that’s all for the moment. Do I have your word?”
Melissa looked at me, and then nodded as I said “good – turn to face the table, and raise your hands for a few moments.” She did that, and I tied a band of rope round her waist to secure her to the chair back, before I knelt down and tied her ankles to the front legs of the chair.
“What are you studying anyway?”
“Hsthrrhheee – chhehvlwhr”
“Very good – keep working, and when it’s time to eat, I’ll get the others to come in here and join you.”
She nodded and actually smiled as I left her to work – it was time to get Mummy playing.
I knew from my research that Donna Mount had an office on the first floor, so I walked up and opened the door – the look of surprise on her face when I walked in, before she said “oh crap – are you that guy my daughter reads about, the one she bases her games with her friends on?”
“I am indeed,” I said quietly as I closed the door, “so let me assure you, your daughters and April’s friends are all currently partially secured. Thank you, however, for making sure they were gagged before I arrive – even if before I leave, I promise they will be even more silent.”
“Okay,” Donna said quietly, “okay – I’ll do whatever you want me to do, but don’t hurt them.”
“Oh they’re fine – but unusually for me, I’m going to be here a while, so this game means they are hostages for the day. Now, I want you to do whatever I say, understand?”
As Donna nodded, I heard a car draw up outside, and glanced out of the window. “I see my research was correct – your sister and nieces are here, as usual. Tell me, do they play the same games as April?”
“When they are here, yes – why?”
“Then they will play today as well,” I said quietly, “go to the door.”
As she walked over, I heard the front door open and close, and a female voice say “you’re playing again April? Donna, did you do this?”
I nodded as Donna took a breath, and said “in a way – do Sonia and Elsie want to join in?”
“Right – there are two spare black scarves down there. If you use them, I’m going to come down and explain what the game is today.”
“Put your hands behind your back,” I said quietly, watching as Donna did so before I used some rope to secure them together at the wrists. I then opened the door and allowed her to go first, as we walked down the stairs. Going into the room with April and her friends, I smiled as I said “see – I told you you would not be the only ones in here.”
There were three new people there – two young girls, one about eleven years old with long brown hair, wearing an orange striped t-shirt and jeans, and the second a blonde-haired girl about seven years old, wearing a brown and white striped jumper and blue leggings. But, like the other girls, both had a rolled up black scarf tied between their lips, the corners of their mouths pulled slightly back as well, as they said “Hruuhhmmm?”
“Yhshthsss,” April laughed, the scarf much wetter at the corners of her mouth now as the older woman stared at me and Donna. She had short dark hair, and was wearing a black short sleeved dress with white polka dots, and red shoes.
“You must be Deborah,” I said with a smile, “which makes this Sonia and Elsie. Welcome to the big Hostage Game, girls – I hope you are happy to join in.”
The two girls grinned and nodded as Donna said “it’s going to be a game for all of us, Deborah – play along as well.”
“Okay, Sis – if you say so,” Deborah said as the girls watched me take her hands behind her back and secure them together with rope, before I said “do you want to be like the others?”
They both nodded, so I made sure their wrists were secured together behind their backs as well before they sat on a smaller couch, watching as I tied their ankles together before Elsie sat on Sonia’s lap, the two girls wriggling round as they tried to talk.
“Now,” I said as I looked at the clock, “it will be time for some food soon, which I am sure your mother and Aunt Deborah will prepare April. Then you can all come into the dining room and eat with Melissa – sounds good?”
All six girls nodded as I said “for now, stay here, watch the television – ladies, come with me please.”
“Have fun girls,” Donna said as she and Deborah left with me, and we walked into the kitchen, the two women sitting down at the breakfast bar as I looked at them.
“So you’re the Games Player,” Deborah said as she wriggled round, “I guess we’re really going to be tied up later?”
“In a while – but this is the long game,” I said with a smile, “but I was serious when I said you will need to prepare some food for all of them. I understand the friends of April tend to stay until the late evening?”
“That’s right,” Donna said quietly.
“Good – I am going to make sure you both stay quiet, and as part of the game, you do not remove what I do – but then I will untie your arms, and you can prepare the food together. It will give them a sight of what is to come.”
“And just what are you going to do,” Donna said as she looked at me, while I smiled…
“All right, girls, jump in and stand by a seat.”
Melissa turned her head and watched as January, April, May, June, Sonia and Elsie all jumped in, looking at April’s big sister. Donna and Deborah also looked at them, the girls seeing the white tape that covered their mouths as they were helped by their mothers to sit in the chair.
“I want you all
to raise your hands,” I said before I tied bands of rope round the waist of all
of the girls to keep them in place, then pushed the chairs in as they looked at
the plates of finger food. Donna and Deborah then sat down, waiting with their
hands on their heads as I tied their waists to the chair backs, and then tied
their ankles to the front legs of the chair.
Standing back, I said “you can remove your gags now,” all of them nodding as they reached round and untied the scarves, before I collected the wet silk cloths. At the same time, Donna and Deborah peeled the white tape away from their mouths, and pulled the black scarves out of their own mouths.
“Are… Are you going to do that to us later,” June whispered, and when I nodded all six girls grinned – right before they started to eat as I poured drinks for all of them.
“Thank you,” April said as I stood back, and they started to talk about school, while Donna and Deborah talked to Melissa. I merely watched – there would be time later for my search of the house, the important thing now was to make sure they had fun.
I thought about Jay Edwards and Mrs McPhee, and remembered how much I admired how they did all this – but I was on my own, so that meant I had to do things a little differently…
So when the door opened as they were eating, and a grey haired woman came in, I was taken a little unawares – but then she said “oh my – have I walked in on a game of Hostages.”
“You have Mum,” Donna said quietly, “and our captor is standing right behind you.”
“Hello,” I said as she turned and looked at me. She had short grey hair, and was wearing a leopard skin wrap blouse with elbow length sleeves, a tight knee length white skirt, and cream coloured open toe shoes. She looked at me, and said “is this a game?”
“No Gran,” April said with a smile, “this is the real Games Player.”
“So you are Helen,” I said quietly, “as you can see, everyone is unharmed, and is playing along. I trust you will do so as well.”
Helen slowly nodded as she said “I will – what do you want me to do?”
“Give me your purse,” I said with a smile, “and then take a seat while I secure you to it. You can help Donna when the time comes to make you all secure.”
“I’ve had enough, Mum,” Elsie said as she looked at me, “can I go to the toilet please?”
“Does anyone else need to go?”
June raised her hand as I said “very well then – raise your hands, and I will untie both of you, and take you there with April’s grandmother. Your family and friends are going to stay here, and not raise the alarm – true?”
All of them nodded as I untied the two girls and took them to the toilet, saying “before we go back, I’m going to start to make you both really secure for the next part of the game, all right?”
As they nodded, I said “as for you, my dear Helen, just remember the rest are still hostages, so don’t try to raise the alarm.”
“Oh no – they are having fun, so I won’t,” Helen said as the girls went to the toilet. I smiled as I said “we can start with you as well – put your hands behind your back…”
When June and Elsie came out, they saw Helen standing there, her wrists secured behind her back and bands of rope around her chest to hold her arms firmly against her sides.
“Oh wow,” Elsie whispered, “is that what you are going to do?”
“It is,” Helen said with a smile as I took Elsie’s hands behind her back, crossing her wrists before I tied them tightly together with the rope, and then took a longer length of rope round her arms and stomach to keep them in place.
“This feels nice,” she said as she wriggled round while I tied June’s arms and wrists in the same way, before we walked back into the dining room. “Now,” I said with a smile as I untied Donna, Melissa and April, “you three come with me.”
“How does it feel,” May said as she looked at June.
“It feels nice – snug, tight,” June said as I left the room, and we walked to the toilet.
“So you are going to do that to all of us?”
“As a start – but not yet for you to your sister Donna. I need you to do something for me when they have all been…”
As we walked into the main room, I looked at the seven girls. April and January had taken their jerkins off, but they all had their wrists tied tightly together behind their backs, and bands of rope around their arms and bodies to keep them securely held in place. Donna and Deborah still had their hands free, as they said “why are we not secured yet?”
“As I said, I need your help with something,” I said as I held up the seven wet black scarves, “namely, making sure the girls are kept quiet in the same way as you were. So, I want you to put each scarf into their mouths – all the way.”
“Oh wow – the special gag?”
“Not the full works, no – but it will be secure enough,” I said, Melissa looking at the other six girls and shaking her head before she opened her mouth and allowed Donna to put the scarf in.
“Open wide girls,” Deborah said as she pushed the damp cloths into the mouths of her daughters, both Elsie and Sonia nodding as they closed their lips over it.
“Allow me,” Helen said as she took care of January, May and June before I handed Donna a roll of white tape. “Wrap this round the heads of the girls,” I said quietly, “and then give it to your sister.”
Five minutes later, the six younger girls were trying to talk, the white tape covering their lips as Melissa sat down on the couch next to Helen. “Your mothers are going to come round the house with me,” I said as Donna and Deborah looked at each other, “so Melissa and your grandmother are going to keep you company. I want you all to sit down on the floor, and stretch your legs out, crossing your ankles.”
The girls looked at each other and then sat down, Donna and Deborah watching as I bound the ankles of each girl together, and then their legs below their knees. I made sure Melissa and Helen had their ankles and legs secured together with rope, before I said “now, I will put the television on – but I also really need to make sure none of you can escape…
Fifteen minutes later, the girls were laughing – in a muffled way – as they wriggled on the floor, lying on their stomachs. I had bent the ankles of Elsie back and tied them to Sonia’s chest ropes, doing the reverse with her sister, while April and January were secured together in the same way – as were May and June.
Melissa was lying on her side on one couch, her ankles pulled back and tied to her chest ropes, while Helen was in a similar position on the longer couch. They all nodded as they started to watch the television, while I bound the wrists of Donna and Deborah behind their backs, and their arms to their sides.
“Now then, let’s have a walk round,” I said, secure the others were secured and happy as we made our way from room to room, making sure I took the valuables, money and other items as we went round.
I then gagged both of them in the same way, before we went back to the front room, the others making muffled cheers through the cloth and tape as I helped Donna and Deborah to lie on the floor, securing their legs and hogtying them as well before I looked round the room.
“Thank you all for playing along,” I said with a smile, “and I hope you have fun trying to escape.” They all nodded as Helen said “Fhhnkuhhnhsthrrphlhhrr” as I left the room.
I read their story of what happened a few days later on the board – and then saw a reminder of a very special visit more recently…