“Good morning Hannah,” Angela said as she closed the door to the outer office of the legal office, “I see you’ve got the new uniform on as well?”
“Yeah – like the boss man gave us a choice,” the other woman said as she closed the filing cabinet. “I thought brown went out with the seventies!”
“I guess not,” Angela said as she sat at her desk and uncovered her typewriter. The redhead was wearing a long sleeved cream coloured blouse with a brown waistcoat over it, a belt tied round her waist made from the same brown wool material. The long skirt she was wearing was made of the same material, and a pair of long tan leather boots covered her lower legs. Finally, she had a tie made of the same brown material tied loosely round her neck, under the collar of the blouse.
Hannah was a blonde, but was dressed virtually the same way, save that instead of a waistcoat she was wearing a tailored jacket, fastened up the front, and with a gold fern brooch pinned to the left lapel.
“So who is the boss expecting today,” Angela said as she opened the first file on her desk.
“The van der Borgen girls are coming in to discuss the unlocking of their trust funds,” Hannah said as she sat at her desk, “due in about an hour. The boss said he would be in time to meet with them.”
“Fair enough – good morning, sir, can I help you?”
Angela looked over to see a tall, dark haired man who had walked into the office. He was dressed in an expensive dark suit, Hannah noticing that it had been cut to flatter his figure. He wore a white shirt and a dark silk tie, as well as highly polished black shoes, and he carried a large black valise in his hand.
“I do hope so – this is the office of Snark, Poulson and Hart, associates?”
“It is – but I am afraid the senior partners are off site at a meeting,” Angela said, “I can make an appointment if you wish – Mister Poulson is due in later this morning.”
“No, I don’t think that will be necessary, I think you ladies will be able to assist me,” the man said with a smile as he put the valise down and opened it.
“I am afraid, sir, that we are not legally qualified,” Hannah said as she watched him look in the bag, “as I say, we can…” She then fell silent, Angela slowly raising her hands as he pointed a Luger at both of them.
“I must ask you,” he said as he looked at Hannah, “to disconnect the telephones in this office – slowly. If I see you head for the alarm button, your charming friend here would be dead before you touched it.”
“Just… Just do as he says,” Angela whispered as Hannah stood up, and started to pull the phone wires out of the sockets they had been plugged into.
“As for you my dear,” the man said as he took out of his valise and walked over to Angela, handing her a blue silk square, “I want you to fold this into a pad.”
“And what are you going to do with it when I have,” Angela said as she slowly folded the square into a thick pad.
“I’m not going to do anything,” the man said with a smile, “you are going to put it in your mouth.”
Angela looked at him, and whispered “please…”
“No more talking,” he said quietly as he looked into her eyes, “do it.” As Hannah watched, Angela opened her mouth and pushed the folded silk wad in, trying not to gag as she closed her lips over it.
“Now,” he said as he looked at Hannah, “I want you to take that brown tie off, and gag your friend with it.”
“But you already got her to…”
“and she could push it out – so take the tie off, and pull it between her lips, then round her head,” he whispered as he aimed the Luger at Hannah, the young woman nodding as she whispered in return “I’m sorry” and removed her tie, Angela nodding as the brown strip was pulled between her lips and tied round her head. She could taste the wool and silk on her tongue, but knew there was nothing she could do about it.
“Now,” the man said as he took a second blue silk square from his bag and handed it to Hannah, “your turn. Fold this, put it in your mouth, and then your friend here will use her tie to make sure it stays in there.”
Hannah slowly nodded as she folded and put the square into her mouth, then stood as Angela removed her tie and used it as a cleave gag, tying it tightly round her head.
“Excellent,” the man said with a smile, “now, both of you, turn round and put your hands behind your back.” Hannah and Angela looked at him, and then turned round as they both moved their hands, crossing their wrists behind their back. They felt the rope as it was pulled tightly round their arms, the binding going round and between their arms so that their wrists were held tightly together. Hannah then grimaced as Angela’s tie was pulled tighter round her head, the corners of her mouth pulled back as she looked over and saw him doing the same thing to Angela.
“Whtsghnnhnn,” Hannah mumbled as he walked round and looked at them.
“We’re going to go for a walk,” the man said as he picked up the gun and valise, and motioned towards the door, “let’s go – we’re not leaving the building, just going up a floor.”
The two gagged women nodded as they walked in front of him, down the deserted corridor and up a service staircase. The man looked out of a door, and then made them walk quickly down the hallway and into a deserted office – save for the two chairs set in the middle of the floor.
“Go over and sit in those chairs,” the man said as he closed the door, Angela and Hannah walking over and then taking a seat as he put the valise down, and took out a long length of rope.
“Swhhthhsghnnhnn,” Angela said as he wrapped the rope round her body, pulling her against the chair back as he proceeded to lash her into place, making sure her arms were held tightly against her sides as the bands went around her and the chair back as well. She was held fast, unable to do anything but slowly turn her head as she watched him securing Hannah in the same way.
Hannah glanced down as she tried to move, wondering what was going to happen next as he knelt in front of her, crossing her ankles and securing them together with the rope, the leather squeaking as he pulled her ankles back and secured to them to the spar linking the legs under the seat. He then took another length of cord and bound her legs together over her skirt, before he stood up and smiled.
“Your turn,” he said as he did the same to Angela’s legs, the two women twisting round as he walked behind them, and put his hand on their shoulders.
“I want to thank you ladies for your cooperation,” he said quietly, “and assure you, you will not be harmed – but I do need to do one more thing?”
“Hndwhtsshtht” Hannah said as she tried to turn her head – and then her eyes shot open as a damp, sweet smelling cloth was pressed firmly over her nose and mouth.
“Nothing personal, ladies – this is strictly business.”
The man was standing in front of her, smiling as through her rapidly blurring vision she saw a second hand holding a cloth over Angela’s nose and mouth – before her eyes closed, and her head slumped forward.
“Time to go to work,” the man said quietly as he walked out of the door…
The blonde looked up from her desk as the door opened and two women walked in.
“Elsa and Maria van der Borgen to see Mister Paulson,” the darker haired of the two women said as they looked at the secretary, dressed in a brown jacket and skirt, a cream blouse with a brown wool tie, and tan leather boots.
She in turn looked at the twin sisters. The one who had spoken was wearing a tight fitting jersey dress made from a dark grey material with white stripes and a cowl neck, a thick black leather belt round her waist, and white leather boots. The second woman had lighter streaks in her hair, and was wearing a chocolate brown pinafore dress over a green sweater, also with a cowl neck, and black skin tight leather boots. Both had their hair in a Princess Leia type of hair style.
“Ah yes,” she said as she stood up and picked up a folder, “Mister Paulson is expecting you. Will you come this way please?” She indicated a door to the other side of the office, the two sisters following her as she knocked on the door and looked in.
“I have the van der Borgen sisters to see you sir?”
“Ah excellent – show them in Angela,” the tall and impeccably dressed man said as he stood up, “welcome. Can I offer you some coffee?”
“No thank you,” the darker haired woman said, “I am Elsa, and this is my sister Maria.”
“Of course – thank you Angela, you may close the door for now,” Mister Poulson said quietly, the secretary nodding as she walked out and closed the door behind her. “So, thank you for calling into our offices today, ladies.”
“It was our pleasure,” Elsa said as they sat down, the leather of her boots creaking as she crossed her legs and sat with her ankles to one side. “We are most anxious to ensure the disposition of our late father’s estate has been sorted to our satisfaction.”
“Naturally,” Mr Poulson said as he handed the two women a manila file. “I think if you read the summary that is in there, you will be assured as to what the next steps are going to be.”
Elsa nodded as she opened the file, looked at the sheet inside, and then said quietly “is this a joke” as she handed the sheet of paper to Maria.
“Do not move, this is a kidnapping,” she read out loud, “you cannot be…”
“Oh I am,” Mister Poulson said quietly as the office door opened, and Angela came in with another woman 0 this one dressed in black, as the sisters saw when they stood up and turned round – then raised their hands in the air as they saw the guns in Angela and the stranger’s hands.
“Now,” Mister Poulson said as he walked round from the other side of the desk, “you ladies are going to do exactly what I tell you to do – and for starters, Miss Elsa van der Borgen, I need you to slowly, carefully, lower your hands and put them behind your back.”
“Oh my god,” Maria whispered quietly as she watched her twin sister slowly do as she had been ordered, Mr Poulson smiling as he opened a black valise, and took a length of brown rope out, doubling it over and using it to secure her wrists tightly together.
“Your turn, Maria,” he said quietly as he guided the other twin’s hands behind her back, and used a second length of rope to secure them together, the two women smiling as he did so.
“You… You’re not Mr Poulson, are you,” Maria whispered as the rope was pulled tightly between her wrists.
“How observant of you – Angela, would you and your friend care to do the honours?”
“Smile,” Angela said as she produced a wide roll of brown sticking plaster, Elsa scowling as she tore a long strip off and pressed it firmly down over her mouth, silencing her as Maria shook her head.
“No… Please… I’ll be quiet, you don’t have to…”
“Put your lips together,” the man said quietly as she felt a small pressure against her back, Maria nodding as she went quiet, and a second strip of sticking plaster was firmly pressed down over her mouth. The two sisters looked at each other, the fear clear in their eyes as the second woman opened the door and went out, returning a few minutes later as she said “all clear.”
“Shall we,” the man they thought had been Mr Poulson said as he took Elsa’s arm, Angela taking Maria’s as they were frogmarched out of the office, along the corridor and onto the service stairway. The two bound and gagged women made no noise as they were walked down the stairs to the basement car park, Angela opening the door and making her way to a large Daimler that was parked nearby.
As the boot opened, the two sisters were walked over and then lifted up and put into the large open space, both of them watching as the woman clad in black secured their ankles together with more rope.
“Enjoy the ride,” Mr Poulson said as the boot was shut, Maria barely able to see Elsa as they heard the car doors open and close, and then felt the vehicle move off…
“Hello? Angela, Hannah, where are you?”
The grey haired man looked round as he walked into the office, surprised to see that it was empty. He had tried to call to tell them that he was unable to make it to the office for the scheduled meeting, and needed to reschedule, but for some reason had bene unable to get through.
“What the hell is going on here,” he said to himself – bad enough someone had poured sugar into the petrol tank of his car, and he had required assistance with that, but to find nobody at their desks?
He then picked up one of the telephone handsets, and tried to dial, but heard nothing – and then he saw the phone had bene disconnected.
No – all of them had been. Shaking his head, he went into his office, and saw a thin white envelope on his desk. He picked it up, looked at it, opened it and read the message inside.
“You should check the empty office on the next floor up – you will be surprised.”
“What the hell is going on,” he said to himself as he left the offices, and went to the next floor, opening the door to the empty office above – and then staring into the room.
“MSHTTHRHRPHLSSHHNHLPSSSS!” Angela screamed as she and Hannah struggled in the chairs, their ties pulled between their lips and darkening at the corners, their blouses undone from their attempts to escape….
Emilia van der Borgen looked up as the butler handed her a large brown envelope. “This was just delivered by hand, Madame,” he said as he bowed and left the room. The grey haired woman looked at the envelope, and then opened it removing some photographs and staring at the pictures of Maria and Elsa. They were lying on two beds, ropes holding their arms tightly to their sides, their ankles together, and tied over the skirts of their dresses to hold their legs together. They stared out over the plasters covering their lips, their mother shaking her head as she looked at the note included.
“Do not call the police, or tell anyone. We will be in touch with details of how you may get your daughters back…”