Try To Escape Again…
The offer I have made to help arrange escape games for families and others has been taken up more and more recently – take, for example, the family birthday celebration I was asked to help with.
It was a family of five girls – and it was the youngest, a pair of ten year old twins, who were celebrating their birthday. They were both wearing white dresses with lace skirts, a white shrug, white tights and white shoes.
The next oldest was eleven, and wearing a white top with open shoulders, white pants and socks. Then there was a twelve year old, who was wearing a peach coloured denim blouse, jeans and trainers, a pink band in her hair. The oldest girl was thirteen, wearing a blue smock that had pink sleeves, pink pants and socks, and a pink scarf over her head and shoulders.
IT was their mother who had heard of me, and asked me to do an escape game with them before they had their food. So I arranged five chairs in a circle, then their mother watched as I used lengths of pink cloth to make sure their hands stayed behind their backs, before they took a seat – the two birthday girls together, facing the other three.
There were five more lengths of the pink ribbon, which I used to make sure each girl had their ankles securely tied together. Finally, clear tape went over each of their mouths so they would have some difficulty in talking to each other, although that certainly did not stop them trying to.
Their mother made sure they were all right and happy, before she left the room and I started the timer, the five girls all having fun as they twisted round, trying to get the tape off their mouths and get free first. You might think it was the oldest girl who would get free first – but it was actually one of the birthday twins, who stood, watched and laughed as the others struggled.
What it did provide was a good way for them to have fun, and for them to be ready to eat and drink – and they certainly seemed to enjoy themselves.
The mother also asked if I would do something for her younger sister, who lived nearby, and her on a different night. Another escape challenge, but a little bit more challenging. I was free, so a few days later I called on both of them at the sister’s house. The mother was wearing a white sweatshirt with a print on the front, blue jeans and black trainers, a taupe coloured scarf round her head and neck and hanging down on one side of her body.
As for her sister, she was wearing a mustard coloured top with a picture of black and white flowers on the front, taupe pants and shoes, and a leopard print scarf over her head and shoulders, the ends down her back. They had already placed two green garden chairs in the centre of the room, and on the table were two new green nylon washing lines, a roll of white tape and a pair of scissors.
I made sure they both understood what was going to happen, before taking the scissors, unravelling the first washing lien and cutting it in half, then asking them to take a seat and sit with their hands on their heads. I then used each of the longer lengths around their waist to make sure they were secured to the chair backs, making sure the knot was in front under their belly button.
It had to be, for the challenge to stand a chance of succeeding. Anyway, the second washing lien I cut into eight equal lengths, four for each of them. The first one I used to make sure their left wrists were secured to the chair back, and then their right wrists in the same way, so that their arms were resting on the plastic.
Kneeling down, I moved their ankles so that they were against the inside of the front legs of the chairs, and used the other four lengths of rope to secure them together as well.
The last thing I did was to wrap the white tape round their heads to cover their mouths – the scarf protected their head and hair, so it made sure they really were going to have problems communicating with each other if they wanted to.
I then set up one of their phones – at their request – to film them before I started a timer and left them to try to get free from the chairs. They had arranged for some food and drink to be left in the kitchen for me, so that was where I went to wait for them to come and join me…
Which they did, I assure you.
Now, the Games Players have a lot to answer for, in popularising the idea of a robbery game – which is why I was knocking one Saturday morning on the door of a detached house, to be let in to meet the girls who wanted to play.
There were five of them – a fourteen year old, a thirteen year old, two twelve year olds and a ten year old. They were all casually dressed – on order, a black Adidas top with white stripes, blue leggings and socks; a blue UCB sweatshirt, black leggings and socks; a peach top, blue jeans with pink flowers on the legs, and black socks; a white long sleeved top, black jeans and socks; and finally a white and pink hoodie, brown leggings and white socks.
Their mother was also taking part, so I started by telling her what I was going to do, before I fulfilled their request of pulling a dark stocking down over my head, and going to meet them in the front room. They all screamed in mock fear when they saw me, before I told them to sit in front of the brown corner couch, and hold their hands out, palms together.
I had a large roll of silver duct tape with me, which I used to secure their wrists together one by one, each girl making fists with their hands as I did so. Then I asked them all to sit with their legs bent, and used the tape to secure their lower legs together, making a band on each of them from their ankles to halfway up their legs.
They were then asked to put their taped hands down on their upper legs – which allowed me to tape them down there as well, the tape going round their legs so they could not lift them up. And then the finishing touch – the strips of tape pressed down over their mouths, before I left them to try and mumble to each other while I brought their mother in.
I had taped her wrists together behind her back, and then wound the tape round her waist so the silver band sat on her denim blouse, before I sat her down in an armchair and taped her legs together, in the same way as the girls – the silver tape was already over her mouth. I then said I was going to raid the house, and they should sit still.
As if they were going to do that – as soon as I left, I heard their muffled laughs as they started to twist round and try to escape. All part of the fun and the service, as I removed the stocking mask and went to have a drink of water. I had to go and wait for the first of them to find me.
Now, it is not just younger people who have employed my services to have an escape game. For example, I was contacted by an Indian woman, and asked if I was able to perform an escape challenge for her and her daughter in law using very specific things.
I said that would be possible, so I called at their house one afternoon. The woman who had called me had short brown hair, and was wearing a brown patterned sari over a green blouse, as well as green slippers. Her daughter in law had long black hair platted into a pigtail, and was wearing a red tunic with a white and black arrow pattern and black sides, as well as black pants.
And the specific thing she asked me to use? A selection of dupattas…
So we went into the main room, and had some tea, before I began with the older woman. Selecting a blue dupatta, I invited her to kneel down on the floor, and then rolled the long silk material up before I used it to secure her wrists together behind her back.
I then rolled up a mustard coloured dupatta, and used that as a cleave gag, pulling it back and around her head as she nodded. The final thing was to fold up a light brown dupatta with a red trim, and use that as a blindfold. At their request, I did not secure their ankles together – and I felt it would eb disrespectful as well.
It was then time to make sure her daughter in law could take part, as she knelt next to the older woman and removed her glasses. For her, I used a yellow dupatta to secure her wrists together, a black one as a cleave gag, and a grey one as a blindfold.
I then watched as they tried to struggle free, again to make sure they did not hurt themselves or each other – but I do confess, I did wonder what it would be like if they were not kneeling, but instead sitting down with some more dupattas noodling their ankles and their legs together…
Then there were the two sisters who wanted a real challenge, but wanted it kept quiet from their rather strict brethren community. Well, secrets are something I know all about…
I watched them as they returned one Sunday afternoon, both wearing long dresses and hats, and then introduced myself before they went into the house. Once they knew nobody was watching, they invited me in, and asked me to make my preparations while they changed.
When the first sister came down, she was wearing a blue denim dungaree dress and a white baseball cap, and was barefoot. I had placed two dining chairs back to back, so I invited her to sit on one of them, and then to hold her hands out in front of her, palm to palm. I wound the silver tape tightly round her wrists, as I heard her sister coming down.
While the one I was binding had long black hair down her back, her sister had put hers into a bun behind her head. She was wearing a candy striped halter dress, with a shrug-like denim waistcoat, and was also barefoot. She sat behind her sister, and smiled as I made sure her wrists were taped together as well.
I then asked them both to raise their arms, as I wound the tape round their waists and the chairs. This did two things – it made sure they were not getting up from the chair, and it held the chairs together. They lowered their legs down as I put the tape down, and instead unravelled a coil of brown rope I had brought with me, cutting two lengths off before I knelt in front of them.
For each of them, I used the shorter lengths to tie their ankles together, and then tied their feet together as well. The remaining long length of rope I wound round their arms and upper bodies, keeping their upper arms against their sides and also holding them together in another way in addition to the tape band.
All that remained was to make sure they could not talk to each other, by using silver tape with several strips over their mouths, and then I sat back to watch as they struggled, tried to talk – and had a lot of obvious fun.
And no recordings that may spoil their standing in church society…
How about three flatmates on the outskirts of Manchester’s Chinatown? It was a Friday night when I answered their call for some fun. The first of them was wearing a black short sleeved dress with a skirt that came to the floor, the second a short dress with a checked skirt, and a blue top with a deep neckline. The third girl had dark hair, unlike the other two with light brown hair, and was wearing a white peasant style top with the sleeves pulled down from the shoulders, and a black skirt with red hearts.
They also had a very specific request – that I use some orange tape. Not a problem for me, especially as they supplied the tape.
It was a simple arrangement as well – their wrists taped together in front of them, and for thew two with shorter skirts their legs taped together above their knees. For the third girl, I taped her ankles together instead.
The final touch was the orange tape over their mouths as they twisted round and looked at each other – which was the moment a young man walked in and looked at them.
Turned out he was the boyfriend of one of the girls, and once he got over the initial shock, he asked if I would tape him up as well.
Which I did – why wouldn’t I?
Anyway, I’m now with another mother and her girls helping them to play the escape tape with clear tape. Mummy is wearing a black V-necked top and faded jeans, and she’s sitting the third of three chairs in a row, her wrists taped together and watching as I tape her ankles together with the clear tape as well.
At the other end of the row is her seven year old daughter, wearing a black sweatshirt and black pants with a white stripe on the side of the legs. She already has her wrists taped together in front of her, and tape round her ankles and her legs below her knees. As she lifts them up and down, she’s laughing and giggling as she talks to her younger sister.
The four year old is wearing a white sweatshirt and pants, and she also has her ankles and legs taped together. She’s also laughing as she wriggles her toes, and watches as her mother’s legs are taped together below her knees.
I then ask the young girl if she is ready, and she nods as she holds her wrists out and lets me tape them together. The final touch is to put clear tape over each of their mouths, and then allow them to try and escape and get free.
Later tonight, I will be paying a professional visit on the street anyway…
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