Turning the Tables

“Are you sure you want to go through with this?”


“Yes, I am – I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t want to!”


“Did you bring what I asked you to?”


“Yes – I have them in my jacket pocket.  Are we going to do this or not?”


“All right, all right – which house do you want to go for?”


“That one there.”


The girl who spoke was pointing at a detached house in the road she and her friend were standing in.  She was wearing a brown blouson-style leather jacket with the collar done up, and brown corduroy trousers, the legs of which were tucked into straight brown leather boots.  Her friend was wearing a white hoodie jacket and black jeans, with black suede mid-length boots.


“Right – let’s go for it.”  The two girls crossed the road and made their up the garden path to the front door, passing a plain grey transit van as they did so.  Both pulled some gloves onto their hands as they walked.  As they approached the door, they could see through the window a woman sitting on a settee, reading a magazine.


The girl wearing the hoodie pulled a small penknife from her pocket.  “Ring the doorbell,” she said to her friend.


Inside the house, the woman raised her head when she heard the doorbell ring.  She glanced in the direction of a rear door that led from the room, shook her head and stood up.  She was in her early 20’s, medium height, with short mousey-coloured hair, and was wearing a blue tracksuit over a grey t-shirt.


She opened the front room door, and made her way to the front door.  She could see two bodies standing there, and wondered if this was the delivery she was expecting.  A little earlier than she had anticipated, perhaps, but it meant she could relax for the afternoon.


She only had time to unlock and open the door before the two girls charged into the doorway, took both her arms and pushed her back into the front room.  Forcing her face down onto the settee, the leather jacketed girl said “Hands behind your back, you little bitch, and don’t make a fucking sound!”


The woman said nothing, but did as she was asked.  Leather girl took two rolls of surgical tape from her pocket, threw one to hoodie girl and started to bind the woman’s wrists together behind her back.  Hoodie girl started to do the same to the woman’s ankles, making sure they were tightly held together.


The woman was then turned over onto her back, and as leather girl wrapped tape around her legs hoodie girl tore off several strips of tape and pushed them firmly over the woman’s mouth.  She waved her knife in the woman’s face, saying “we’re going to take everything we can that belongs to you, and that’s not a fucking thing you can do about it now.  How does that make you feel, you little cow?”


The woman just stared back at the two girls, almost as if she was memorising their faces and making plans if they should meet again.  “Come on,” leather girl said as she tore the tape off the role and finished securing her legs, “Let’s start searching the place.”


The two girls left the room, and stopping only to close the front door again they ran up the stairs to the bedrooms.  The woman lay perfectly still, listening to the sounds coming from upstairs, and occasionally glancing in the direction of the rear door.


Eventually she heard the sound of quiet footsteps coming from the kitchen, and she raised her head as the sound came closer.  The room door opened, and three women entered.


Two were dressed in the same manner – grey bodysuits with soft gloves and shoes, the hood of the bodysuit pulled over their heads and a white featureless mask covering their faces.  They were helping between them a middle aged woman, dressed in a peasant style blouse and long gypsy skirt with brown suede booted feet.  A long length of rope was wrapped around her arms and upper body, and her wrists were obviously held together behind her back.  A knotted scarf was tied in her mouth, which was bulging in a way that suggested there was something stuffed in there, and a Hermes scarf was folded into a band and tied over her eyes.  She was struggling, trying to get loose, as the two women stopped and looked at the third one bound and gagged on the settee with their heads cocked to one side.


The bound woman looked at them, and then raised her head to indicate they should listen upstairs.  All could hear the noise coming from the upstairs room, and the two masked women looked at each other.  One of them took their captive over to a nearby chair, and sat her down as the other went behind the settee and brought round a canvas bag that was hidden there.  Opening the bag, she removed a length of rope and handed it to her colleague, then produced a pair of scissors and cut the bindings around the other woman.


As the doll-faced woman wrapped the rope around the suede booted ankles of the captive, the woman who had been bound with tape rubbed her wrists and removed the tape gag from her mouth.  As she rolled up the tape and collected the scattered pieces, there was a ring on the doorbell.  She threw the tape into the bag and went to the door.


“Mrs Anstruther?  The delivery you’re expecting – sign here please.”


She returned to the room and placed a small package on the table.  Closing the blinds to the room, she removed the blue tracksuit to reveal a grey bodysuit similar to that worn by the other two women.  She folded the tracksuit neatly, removed from the bag a white featureless mask, and placed it over her face before pulling the hood that had been tucked into the tracksuit jacket over her head.  A pair of soft grey shoes and gloves were removed and donned by the woman, who stood revealed as a third member of the gang.


Meanwhile, the other captive’s ankles had been securely tied, and her legs tied together above her knees and over her skirt.  As a result, her skirt had been pulled slightly up to reveal that she was actually wearing brown desert-style boots.  She was squirming on the seat, trying to find a way to loosen the bonds around her.


The other two masked women approached the door at the rear of the room, and opened it to reveal a younger woman who was wearing a black silk blouse, leather trousers and mid-length boots.  She was bound and gagged in a similar way to the woman who had been brought in, but had not been blindfolded, so she could see everything as she was carried into the room and deposited on the couch.



“Did you hear something?” leather girl asked.  The two girls were in the master bedroom, and were throwing items out of drawers and cupboards in a frantic search for anything they could take.


“Probably just that stupid cow falling off the couch – oh, look, real silk scarves.  How do I look?”  Hoodie girl wrapped her hair in a scarf, and both burst out laughing.


In the main room, the two bound women were mmphing at each other to try and find out how they were.  The gang member who had been in disguise took several lengths of rope, and a gun, and silently crept up the stairs as the other two started a meticulous search of the downstairs room.


“Come on,” leather girl said, “We need to check out the other rooms.”


“You go ahead – I’ll follow in a minute” hoodie girl said as she continued to rummage through the drawers.  Leather girl looked at her, and then opened the door to leave.


There, standing in front of her, was a women dressed in grey, with a white mask and a gun pointing straight at her.


Leather girl backed into the room.  “Oh shit!” was the phrase that escaped her lips.  Hoodie girl turned around to see her friend coming back in, followed by the masked gang member.


“Oh crap – I know who you are,” hoodie girl shouted, “You’re one of that China Doll gang they talk about on the news, aintcha?”


The masked Doll nodded, and indicated with the gun that both girls should raise their hands.


“Please, please tell me you’re not the woman we tied up downstairs,” leather girl whispered, but both girls became even more afraid when the masked woman slowly nodded.


Both girls moved into the centre of the room, staring at the woman as she came in and moved around, covering both of them all the time with the gun.  She placed her hands on her head, and the two girls did the same.  She then put her finger to the mouth of the mask, and they realised they were being told to be quiet.



The real Mrs Anstruther was twisting around on her couch, trying simultaneously to see what the masked women were doing and listening to the noise from upstairs.  She had been working from home that day, waiting for the delivery that had arrived and thinking a home delivery would be more secure than one in the store.  The Gang had surprised her about an hour earlier, and bound and gagged her before she had had a chance to fight back.  They had then left her in the back office, at which point her housekeeper had opened the door and made her way into the kitchen.  Two of the gang had gone to find her, while she could hear the third in the front room.  When she heard the noise, she thought the gang members had turned on each other, but such was obviously not the case.


She looked over at the housekeeper, who was sitting with her head bowed.  If only she could get free, but the way the ropes were wrapped around her arms and body made that impossible.  She couldn’t even let her know she was not alone….



“Who are they?” leather girl asked her friend.


“I think they’re a gang of female thieves – and according to the reports, they never say a word and they’ve never been caught.  I’m beginning to think we picked the wrong house.”


The Doll pointed to leather girl, and moved her finger in a manner that she knew meant to come over.  As she approached, the Doll dropped some lengths of rope on the bed.  Picking one up, she gave it to leather girl and pointed to hoodie girl.


“Why are you giving me this – do you mean you want me to – oh no, no, I won’t do it…..”


The Doll pointed the gun straight at the centre of leather girl’s forehead, and pointed again to hoodie girl.  Nodding quietly, she went back over to her friend.


“You’ve got to tie me up, haven’t you?”


Leather girl nodded.  “I’m sorry – you’d better let me do it.”


Hoodie girl nodded, and turning round she put her hands behind her back.  Leather girl took the length of cord she had been given, and crossing her friend’s wrists she started to tie them together, crying softly all the time.  The Doll stood there watching.


A few minutes later, she tied the knot at the top of the wrist bindings, and turned to face the Doll.  In response, she picked up another length of cord, and held it in front of her.  As leather girl took the cord, she pointed the gun at hoodie girl and indicated she should sit down.


“Don’t worry, it’s not your fault” she said as leather girl crossed and tied her ankles together.


“Yes, it is – I picked this house, if I had picked any other…..”


“But it was me who said we should do this.  I guess we should both take some blame, eh?  Besides, I still have my knife………”


Her ankles securely tied together, hoodie girl tried to relax as her friend stood up and looked at the Doll again.  The Doll looked down at the scarves that were scattered over the floor, and picked a small bandana up.  Rolling it up, she held it up for leather girl to take, while pointing to the mouth in her mask to show what she should do.


“You’d better open up” she said to her friend as she came over again.  Hoodie girl opened wide, and leather girl pushed the rolled up bandana into her mouth.  The Doll picked up another scarf, and putting the gun down she rolled the scarf into a band and tied a large knot in the centre.  Retrieving the gun, she handed the knotted scarf to leather girl, who proceeded to tie the scarf over her friend’s mouth to secure the gag in place, knotting the scarf at the back of her hood.


“Now what,” leather girl asked, and she was shocked to see the Doll hading her two scarves, one small bandana and one knotted in the centre.


“What, you expect me to gag myself?”  She shouted, and the Doll just nodded.  “Well, I won’t do it – and you can’t make me.”


The Doll walked towards leather girl, pointing the gun directly at her, and hoodie girl tried to shout at her friend to do as she was told.  All that came out however was “MMPHHHH!!  DDDITTT!!”


Leather girl looked at the Doll for a moment, then reluctantly took the bandana and stuffed it into her mouth, followed swiftly by the other scarf which she tied at the base of her neck.  The Doll indicated with her gun that she should turn around, and as she did so leather girl felt her wrists been pulled behind her back and tied together.  She was then pushed onto the bed next to her friend, and watched as her ankles were crossed and cords wrapped around her brown leather boots.


In the main room, the other Dolls were completing their search of the room.  Opening the package on the table, they retrieved a number of small jewellery cases, and deposited the contents into the same bag as the other items they had found.  Mrs Anstruther was still squirming around in a vain attempt to get out of her bonds, and trying to talk to the other bound woman on the floor.


In the bedroom, the Doll was blindfolding the two frightened girls with rolled up scarves.  She then searched hoodie girl, and found her penknife hidden in the muffler part of her jumper.  Pocketing the knife, she left the room and headed down the stairs.


The other Dolls were packing their loot into the large bag as the other Doll entered.  She looked at her companions, and indicated that one of them should come with her.  The other Doll picked up the bag and took it out to the van waiting outside.


Mrs Anstruther watched as the Doll left the room, then through the open door she saw the other two gang members carrying a teenager down her stairs, dressed in a brown leather jacket, trousers and leather boots but also bound gagged and blindfolded.  She called out in surprise, as she realised that she had actually been the victim of two home invasions, but the Dolls merely carried the struggling girl out, then went back upstairs and returned with a second teenager, also bound and gagged but wearing black trousers and boots and a white hoodie.  Two minutes later, a Doll came back in, checked the bindings on the two women and left closing the door behind her.


The sound of a van driving off could be heard through the window, and the two women started to struggle again to try and get free.


In the back of the van, leather girl and hoodie girl had been bound together back to back, with ropes around their arms and chests.  They tried to hold each others hands both for comfort and also for security, as they realised they had somehow stumbled into a far bigger robbery than the simple one they planned.


They were driven around for an hour or so, until the van stopped and they heard doors open.  Their blindfolds were removed, and the two terrified girls looked up at the masked Doll.  She placed hoodie girl’s penknife beside them, as well as a piece of paper, and left the doors of the van open.


The two girls struggled to get out of their ropes, and after several hours of alternate cursing and squirming they succeeded in getting out of the chest ropes.  Hoodie girl then used her penknife to cut the wrist bindings she had, and went to free her friend.


“Never again – I’m never going to do that again” leather girl cried out as she untied her ankles.  Hoodie girl read what was on the note.




If you are going to get into this business, then you have an awful lot to learn.  Let this be lesson one – you need to know what it feels like for the victims, and you need to plan to succeed.


This may scare you off for life.  If so, we wish you well in what you do.  If not, then learn from today and don’t make the same mistakes.


You were unlucky to pick the house of the jeweller we were visiting, but you should never have done what you did to one of us.  So we took revenge.


The China Doll Gang.