Author Topic: slfb-One_in_64  (Read 3736 times)

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cocomink

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slfb-One_in_64
« on: August 15, 2010, 10:37:48 am »
Story: "One in Sixty-Four" (F, Self-bondage, hanging,)


                   ONE IN SIXTY-FOUR (Part 1 of 3)
                       by Cardaniel80

I know they always say your life passes before your eyes when you're
facing death. That was true, apparently, and standing on the stool,
watching the girl in the mirror, I thought back on the things I'd
done that had led to this point.

I'd been fascinated by bondage as far back as I can remember. My
initially clumsy attempts to tie myself inescapably, and then try
to get out of it, had led to my first orgasms.

My excitement grew as I started adding elements of danger to the
bondage. It didn't seem to be the thrill of being caught, so much
as the possibility of getting myself into something I couldn't get
out of. I always made sure the chance of getting trapped was small,
but it wasn't nearly as exciting if the danger wasn't there. One
time the key I needed to get free nearly fell off the bed, out of
my reach, leaving me without any other way to get loose. I managed
to retrieve it by grabbing a handful of bedsheet and pulling it,
and the key laying on it, away from the edge of the bed, not knowing
as I started whether this would work or would flip the key off the
edge instead. It was a fitted sheet. Pulling it off ripped the far
corner of it. I got new sheets at Sears, telling myself to let
this financial penalty be a lesson to me, that I had to stop these
dangerous games.

I don't know exactly when my fascination with hanging started. It
didn't seem consciously connected with the bondage thing at first.
I just became aware of staring open-mouthed at any movie scene
involving hanging, feeling an excitement I tried to pretend wasn't
there. I was afraid to actually try it, but my self-bondage scenes
began to include pretending that I was helplessly tied up waiting
for "them" to come take me to the gallows.

Just after high school my parents died in a car wreck. I was devastated.
As an only child, I'd been the center of a lot of their attention, and
the loss was almost more than I could bear. I started thinking about
killing myself --- by hanging, of course --- and found, strange as it
seemed to me, that fantasizing about hanging got me excited enough to
lift me out of my depression, to the point where I didn't feel a need
to kill myself anymore. I had a job as a secretary, I could make ends
meet, I struggled through. And I started thinking more and more about
what it would feel like to hang.

I experimented in the living room, using a towel as a noose, standing
on a chair, naked, my hands held behind me with my favorite handcuffs,
the key inserted. I squatted down to let the towel take more and more
of my weight, stood back up to let my heart stop pounding, repeated
the process, and finally stepped off the chair when I felt ready.

There is just no way to describe the feelings: while I had been getting
ready I had been so wet I was dripping on the floor; as I was about
to step off I felt an orgasm coming, from a long way off. The moment
I swung free, suspended by the towel around my neck a foot off the floor,
the orgasm rushed up and hit me like a runaway freight train. I couldn't
make a sound, couldn't even breathe, and the inability to release through
moaning and sighing just seemed to add to the intensity. I wriggled like
a fish at the end of the line as the spasms wracked me. I nearly fainted,
probably never to wake up, before a belated self-preservation alarm
went off in my head, telling me I'd better damn well get back up on
that chair. My foot fumbled behind me and found the chair, nearly
kicking it away in the process. I stood on it and unlocked the cuffs,
untied the towel, and had just enough strength left to step down off
the chair before I fainted on the floor.

I awoke to the internal clamor of an argument going on, two voices
screaming at each other inside my head, one of them saying don't you
ever, ever do that again, the other shouting More! I need more! I felt
like an innocent bystander waiting to see who would win the fight.
I knew which one it would be.

Over the coming days the winner of the argument told me what to do
next. I needed a real noose, with rope, not a towel. I needed to make
it harder to get out of, not just a matter of stepping back up onto
the chair and opening handcuffs that weren't actually legitimately
locked. I needed a full-length mirror so I could watch myself. And
I needed -- most of all, if this was to be a truly transcendent,
maximum experience -- I needed that extra element of added danger.
I needed there to be a possibility that my escape plan could fail.

The place to do it, I knew, was the cabin. My parents had left me a
vacation cabin, deep in the woods, from which my dad hunted. We'd spent
a lot of happy times there. I'd visited it once with the lawyer for
the estate after mom and dad died, and hadn't been back since. But
it was still there, still mine. Actually the deed to it had been held
in trust for me until I turned 21, but I'd reached that milestone a
few months earlier.

The mirror was easy, of course. The rope took a little more effort;
I wanted it to be just right. I eventually found the perfect thing:
red, very silky, about three-quarters of an inch thick. It was really
meant to be used as a decorative border -- you know, you're displaying
something you don't want people touching, so you hang a rope
restraining line on each side of a square around it, and people get
the message... from the rope and the armed guards. In spite of its
stress-free intended use, it was more than strong enough -- it held
my full weight and then some -- and I bought about a 10-foot piece
of it, which I knew would be plenty.

My anticipation of the hanging scene accelerated once I had the
rope. I loved the feel of it; I'd take it out of the drawer
sometimes and rub it against my face, to feel the softness. I
wanted so much to make a hangman's knot with it and put it around
my neck just to see how it felt, but I wanted to wait until I had
everything ready. Instead I just held it in my hands and fantasized
about it. I'd always have to change my panties afterward.

I didn't have a red ball-gag to match the rope, so I ordered one from
my favorite bondage-gear web site. I'm sure they had my credit card
number memorized. While I was at it, I ordered red leather wrist and
ankle cuffs.

The danger part: that was the part I thought about long and hard.
I knew right away how I wanted to get started. I would be standing
on a wooden box, a foot or so high. (I already had the box, and it
now became another focus of my fantasies, as I pictured stepping off
the box to hang by the neck from that beautiful red rope.) There
would be a bungee cord attached to one side of the box, the other
end attached to... something else, it didn't matter what. (Another
purchase: bungee cord. I wondered if anybody was analyzing my
credit card statements.) My weight, as I stood on the box, would be
the only thing keeping it in place: as soon as I stepped off, the
bungee cord would yank the box out from under me. This, of course,
brought up the question of how I would then get loose.

I must have thought of a hundred ideas and variations over the
next week or so, throwing them out for either safety or esthetic
reasons: either some detail would be just a little too dangerous,
or else would spoil the illusion of danger by making escape too
easy. When I finally visualized the ideal solution, I lay awake
all night, too excited to sleep, running the whole scene through
my head again and again, telling myself I really was going to do
this.

The main ingredient would be a mechanical contraption. I put it
together in my dad's workshop. I'm sure my dad had been disappointed
sometimes I wasn't a son, but he never let on. In the end he made
the best of it and familiarized me with tools; as a result I'd never
been uncomfortable with them, or felt that working with tools was
something men did. To me it was something me and dad did.

I was really pretty proud of the contraption once I got it done.
I'd wanted control over how much danger there was, and I got it.
I'd used the old melting-ice trick many times for self-bondage, and
my escape here was going to rely on that.

The device consisted mainly of a hollow clear plastic tube, about
an inch in diameter, standing upright. I'd put 6 identical keys
for my handcuffs, each frozen in its own ice cube, into the tube,
and wait for the ice to melt so the keys could fall out. At the
bottom of the tube was a divider. If a key fell on one side of the
divider, it would drop into a pouch, way out of my reach. If it came
down on the other side, the key would slide down a long slanted chute
that would deposit it onto the floor, next to the box I was standing
on. To reach it, I'd use a magnet that was hanging down from my
handcuffs on a string. The key would stick to the magnet and I'd pull
it up like reeling in a fish, up to my hands, and I'd then unlock
the handcuffs. All I needed was for any one of the six keys to fall
on the right side of the divider and come down the chute. There was
only one chance in sixty-four that all six keys would fall through
the wrong side and get stuck in the pouch. That was the chance I
was willing to take -- *wanted* to take. There was that much chance
I'd be stuck standing on a box, the rope around my neck, my hands
cuffed behind my back, with no way at all to get free. Once my hands
were free, I'd worked out a way to get myself down -- one I couldn't
make use of *until* my hands were free.

I tested the key-drop machine -- endlessly. I had a couple of weeks
vacation time coming in July, which was still months away. I wanted
to make absolutely sure it worked the way it was supposed to. I must
have tried it out a hundred times. It usually took about two hours
for the first ice cube to melt enough to release its key, and the rest
would usually follow over the next twenty minutes or so. Pretty often
three keys came down the chute, three fell in the pouch. Not always,
of course: anything could happen. I never did get all six keys down
the chute, but one time, out of all those tries, every single key
ended up in the pouch. Another sleepless night then, telling myself
that was okay, I knew the odds, that was going to happen sometimes.
If it happened while I was standing on the box with my head in
the noose, I was dead. But what a way to go, huh?

I tried out the other elements of the scene too, of course. I
practiced standing on the box, my hands in the cuffs, dangling that
magnet down to pick up a key from the floor. At first it took me
nearly twenty minutes, but I got pretty good at swinging the magnet
around from way up there and could get the key within a minute or
so every time. Of course, I'd also practice reeling it in, and using
it to unlock the cuffs while I was still standing up there.

I got more and more excited as the time got closer. I told my friends
I was going to go down to Mexico. A couple of them hinted about wanting
to come along, but I put on my struggling-orphan face and told them
I felt I needed a little time to myself. They thought that was
understandable. I had taken to wearing turtlenecks several months
in advance, so I wouldn't have to explain why I was wearing them
after I got back: I anticipated I would need to, for awhile.

Vacation! It was finally here! It was a ninety-minute drive out to
the cabin, and I think I hardly breathed during the entire trip.
As soon as I got there I filled an ice cube tray halfway and
stuck it in the freezer. It was a beautiful, warm night, hardly
a breath of breeze, and I sat out on the porch for hours, thinking
about the next day. I was going to do it in the morning. I knew I
couldn't wait longer than that. Before I went to bed I went back to
the freezer, lay a key on top of each of a half-dozen ice cubes,
filled the tray the rest of the way with water, and put it back in
the freezer.

I'd been short on sleep for the last few nights before leaving, so I
was so worn out I actually managed to get some that night. I woke
up at first light with a start, and a smile, thinking, this is it!

[Continued in part 2]
« Last Edit: September 05, 2018, 01:55:51 pm by cocomink »

Offline cocomink

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Re: slfb-One_in_64
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2018, 01:57:44 pm »
                   ONE IN SIXTY-FOUR (Part 2 of 3)
                       by Cardaniel80

 I took a long, warm bath after breakfast, with lots of bath oils,
because I love the way they make my skin feel. I nearly fell asleep in the tub,
 (I hadn't gotten *that* much during the night), but suddenly felt energized:
I didn't want to wait any longer.
I dried myself and went into the big front room, still naked, to set things up.
 
 I'd already made some preparations the previous weekends. The mirror was in place,
and the pole was ready, up overhead. The hook in the ceiling was ready,
and the box was already sitting under it.
I spent some time getting the key-drop machine situated just where I wanted it.

 My heart pounding as I sat on the box and fastened the leather cuffs on my wrists and ankles.
Each one was secured by a tiny padlock, and there was a bigger padlock,
the one that the keys went with, to fasten the wrist cuffs to each other.
 I was so wet that I was sliming the top of the box.
I tied one end of the bungee cord to a hinge on the door that led back to the bedrooms,
and brought the other end over and tied it to the ring I'd attached to the side of the box.
 
 I'd tried it at home, but wanted to make sure it worked here.
As soon as I let go of the box it went skidding across the room to smack against the door.
 
 I picked up the rope, one end of which I'd finally fashioned into a hangman's knot,
and retrieved the box so I could stand on it to reach the overhead hook.
 It took me about ten minutes to get the noose positioned just where I wanted it.
 
I was near the end of a little checklist I'd made. I turned off the lights.
 I expected the whole scene to take place in the daylight (it was 9 in the morning now),
but in case I was still there at nightfall, I love the idea of being plunged into darkness.
 
This was it! Time to get the ice cubes! I wait until the last minute to bring those in,
 wanting them to last as long as possible.
 
I got the six key-holding cubes and dropped them into the tube in the key-drop.
 The bottom one was perched on the divider. Looking at it,
I had a feeling it would drop in the pouch, but I couldn't tell for sure.
 I had no idea what the others going to do. It depended on how the ice melted.
 
 I dragged the box back to the middle of the room one last time.
On the floor next to it lay a pair of red spike-heel shoes, the padlock for the wrist cuffs,
a three-inch chain with padlocks at either end for my ankle cuffs,
the string with the magnet at the end, and the red ball-gag.
 
 I tied the string to a ring on the right wrist cuff, opened wide for the ball-gag
and tied the strings holding it in place. I put the heels on and stood up on the box,
 and bent over awkwardly to fasten the hobble-chain. I love my feet being bound,
but they need a little freedom to move around:
it was going to be hard enough to stay balanced as it was.
 
 My heart tried to pound its way out of my chest as I took hold of the noose.
I just held onto it and looked at it for a few minutes.
 I ran my fingers along it, loving the silky feel of it.
At last I couldn't wait any longer and slipped it over my head.
 Carefully positioned the knot behind my left ear, and slid the coils down to tighten it.
I'd succeeded in getting it at just the height I wanted: it kept me standing very upright.
 Without the high heels I would have been standing on my toes.
 
With one last look around the room to make sure everything I needed
was in place, I put my hands behind my back. The padlock was dangling
from the ring on my right wrist cuff. I took hold of it with nervous
fingers, and hooked it through the ring in the other cuff, but I
didn't close it. Not yet. I stood for about ten minutes, knowing it
wasn't yet too late to back out. I didn't have to close the lock. I
could still just reach up and loosen the noose, take it off my head,
climb down and say, well, that was pretty crazy but I've had my
excitement for the day.
 But I knew there was no way I could do that.
 
  I looked straight ahead at the mirror, showing my whole body.
I love the way the heels made my legs look. I looked myself all up and down,
as if I was someone else, admiring the naked girl in the sexy red heels,
standing with her hands behind her, her feet hobbled in her red cuffs,
 her speech stifled by the red gag, and her neck caught in a red noose.
 I wished I was her, and thought "Hey: I *am* her." Still looking in the mirror,
 I put a tiny bit of pressure on the ring of the padlock, pushing it slowly, slowly towards closure.
 
 I couldn't believe I was doing it, but I always knew I would.
It came closer and closer to latching, and I thought about stopping and letting it go,
 but I just kept pushing. Suddenly I felt a click,
and an incredible wash of adrenaline shot through my body.
 A high-pitched squeak came out behind the gag, and I wobbled and would have fallen,
except the rope around my neck kept me upright. I took deep slow breaths and tried to calm down.
 I wanted to close my eyes, but I knew it would make it harder to stand upright,
so I focus on the girl in the mirror, and thought it's for real! I've done it for real!
 
The next hours stretched out forever, but I didn't think I trade them for any other time in my life.
 There is a skylight in the ceiling of the front room, and after about twenty minutes
the sun reached the point where direct sunlight started streaming in.
It made everything look so clear. I had never in my life been so sexually aroused.
There was a constant tingling between my legs, almost as if I had a vibrator in there,
and every so often I would feel a sudden little cool touch on my inner thigh,
 as a string of wetness came down from my pussy.
 
 With careful, tiny steps I turned myself to face to the right so I could see myself in profile.
My breasts looked swollen and felt tingly.
I wish I could touch them -- I usually use one hand to stroke them when I masturbate.
I looked down: my nipples were so prominent, the aureolae so dark.
 
 Looking back to the mirror out of the corner of my eyes now, I examined myself from top to bottom.
 I could see the red wrist cuffs now, trapping my hands behind me.
I waited until last to look at the most exciting part,
 and then I couldn't look away from it for the longest time:
from this angle I had a full view of the coils of the noose coming down behind my ear,
 ending in the loop of red rope circling my neck. Its silky caress felt so wonderful.
 I leaned my head back a little so I could stroke the coiled rope with the back of my ear,
closing my eyes and sighing. Its hold on my throat felt so soft, so intimate.
 No woman had ever had such an attentive lover.
 
My breasts may not have been within reach, but my clit was.
 I'd have to come at it from behind, of course, but if I bent back just a little
I could reach between my legs with my fingers and stroke it.
 I verified I could do it, and one of the hardest things I'd ever done was to make myself stop,
and leave it alone. I didn't want to masturbate. I wanted the rope, my lover, to make me come.
 
There is a clock on the far wall, across from me, showing a half hour had gone by
since I'd snapped the padlock shut.
 I put the ice cubes in about fifteen minutes before that.
 In a little over an hour, the first key would come down.
 
My legs were starting to hurt: I'd worn heels before, of course,
but never stood still in them this long.
 I shifted my weight from one foot to the other every few minutes.
I debated letting the noose take more of my weight, but it wasn't a good idea.
I wasn't sure how much of my weight was needed to hold the box in place,
 but I didn't want to experiment.
 
It was SO quiet. The cabin was very isolated. It wasn't in a legal hunting area,
and my dad liked it that way. He didn't want stray potshots coming through the walls,
 and he didn't mind traveling a little to get his own hunting done.
Not that there was no such thing as illegal hunting,
but the place wasn't that easy to get to either, so that never was a problem.
 I could hear birds outside, including a woodpecker not very far off,
but the only man-made sound I was aware of was an occasional airplane.
There had been times in the past when I'd heard some gunshots way off in the distance,
 on very calm days when sounds carried for miles. There weren't any today, though.
 
My body gave the tiniest start when I heard a clink from the key-drop.
It was just a couple of the ice cubes settling. No key yet.
 
I looked at the key-drop contraption. I was trusting my life to it.
That, and the laws of chance. I believed in my own work. Chance was another thing, though.
 I had absolutely no control over it. I nodded to myself.
That had been the way I wanted it: that there be a chance I might not get out of this.
 
By the time ninety minutes had gone by, I knew it was nearly time.
Melting ice, which had begun as rare drips at first, was now nearly a stream.
The pouch was soaked, and water was sliding down the chute to make a puddle on the floor.

 I'd felt pretty calm for a few minutes, so comfortable in the hold of my lover,
not thinking much about what was scheduled to come next.
 But now the butterflies were starting again; my pussy and breasts were tingling again.
 I would know my fate within another half-hour or so.
 I took a long look in the mirror at myself, turning slowly in different directions
 to see everything I could. I smiled around the gag at the sight of
 the shiny streaks reaching halfway down both my inner thighs.
 
My feet were hurting as well as my legs, and my lower back was complaining too.
 I wished this whole scene could last forever,
but my muscles were telling me it was time to get done with it.
 
The ice clinked again, and I saw a slight jerk in the pouch.
 I could count the keys and see there were five left. The first had fallen on the wrong side,
 out of reach. I started breathing faster. What if what if what if... Oh God,
 I can't believe I've done this.
 
About three minutes later two more keys fell together into the pouch.
Half the keys lost. My whole body was shaking now.
 It had seemed so exciting to put myself in mortal danger,
but with the danger really looming now, it felt stupid, it felt crazy.
 Oh please, let me get out of this.
 
Suddenly, faster than my eye could follow, a key came sliding down the chute.
 One corner of the box was facing the key-drop,
and the key skidded towards the box a little to the right of the corner,
stopping just inches from the side. Easily reached by my dangling magnet.
 
I had never considered stepping off the box before catching one of the keys on the magnet.
 As practiced as I'd become fishing for keys this way,
the thought of trying to do it while I was hanging seemed altogether suicidal.
 
 I wasn't even sure I'd be able to look down to see where the key was.
 My intention had been to get one of the keys stuck to the magnet, and *then* step off the box.
I would still have to reel in the string with my fingers,
 put the key in the lock and unlock the padlock, while hanging. Once my hands were free,
 
 I could then reach above my head for the long pole I had placed up near the ceiling,
 which was held up there on two hooks a few feet apart, hanging from wires.
 With the pole I could reach out and snag the chair I'd placed on the floor to my left,
 about six feet away, and pull it over so I could stand on it.
 
 This was the part of the plan I'd had to work out first:
I didn't want there to be anything nearby that I could stand on,
but I wanted to make sure I could get loose once I had my hands free.
 I love the element of danger there was no way to get free if I *couldn't* open the handcuffs.
 
 It was just as well I'd planned to get the key caught on the magnet first,
because it turned out the key was on the side of the box with the bungee cord.
When the box started sliding away, it would have taken the key with it.
 
It was hard to spot the key where it had ended up, underneath the cord.
 I had to lean a little to see it. Easily accessible, though.
 
With practiced fingers manipulating the string, I jiggled the magnet along the floor
 closer and closer to the key. I lost sight of the key as the magnet hovered over it,
next to the cord, but I knew where it was. In about thirty seconds there was a satisfying click.
 
I turned my attention away from the key at that point and started working on psyching myself
 up for the great moment where I'd step off and swing freely,
but a tiny voice in my head told me my fingers were feeling a resistance they weren't expecting.
 
I decided to try pulling the string up at least partway to see if there was a problem.
 There was. A big one.
 
It seemed to be stuck on something. It didn't seem possible.
 The string passed very close to the bungee cord,
 but there was nothing about the shape of the magnet
that allowed it to get really caught on anything.
 
I took in my breath suddenly. I knew what it was!
 The ring I had screwed into the side of the box, the one the bungee cord was tied to:
it was iron, of course! My magnet wasn't stuck to it mechanically. It was stuck magnetically!
 
 I felt angry at myself for not thinking of it sooner.
I hadn't practiced fishing for keys anywhere near the ring -- it just didn't register on me.
I felt relieved, though. If the thing had gotten mechanically caught on something,
 I might not have been able to manipulate it free, but if it was magnetic force
it would come loose if I pulled hard enough.
 
 As I was working out what the problem was, another key came sliding down the chute.
This one didn't travel quite as far, and ended up directly in front of the corner
 that faced the key-drop, about six inches away. If I'd waited for this one,
 I wouldn't have gotten mixed up with the ring.
I saw in the key drop that the last key had fallen in the pouch.
 I'd ended up with two keys to choose from, out of the six.
As soon as I got the magnet free I'd go for the new key,
and forget the one under the bungee cord.
 
 I took a firm grip on the string and started pulling. I knew I didn't want to pull too hard.
I had chosen the string because of its flexibility, not its strength.
 All it had to do was pick up one tiny key that weighed a fraction of an ounce.
There was only so much tension it was capable of taking.
I felt sure it could handle the amount of force holding the magnet and the ring together,
 but I didn't want to get carried away. I just needed to get it loose.
 
My frustration mounted as the seconds ticked away and nothing budged.
I was sure I could get it unstuck. If I could have reached down and grabbed the magnet,
 I could easily separated it from the ring.
It was just awkward trying to do it from up here,
 but I didn't have any doubt I was capable of it. The whole thing was just maddening.
It was keeping me from a date with my rope.
 
The most exasperating sight was that other key, easily within reach.
If I had just waited! But I'd been so tired and sore from standing there,
 and wanted to get on with the rest of the show.
 
There! The magnet came loose suddenly, jumping off the ring into the air.
 But before I could start raising it,
it fell back where it had come from and stuck on the ring again!
 I hadn't been able to move my fingers fast enough to reel in any of the string.
 
I was really mad now. I took a deep breath and forced myself to calm down.
 That was another thing I'd learned from my dad: being mad doesn't fix anything.
 Just stop and think, and solve your problem.
 
I reached as far down as I could with my right index finger and twirled a couple of loops
 of the string around it. I'd pull with that,
and close my hand into a fist the instant the magnet came free.
That would raise it high enough that it couldn't get stuck again.

I thought fleetingly about stepping off the box now: when the cord pulled the box away
 the magnet couldn't possibly hang on then.
But I wasn't totally sure there was a key attached to it. I couldn't see the key.
 It might be on the magnet, or it might be on the floor under the cord.
If it was on the floor, the box would take it along with it.
 I could still go for the other key, but I was still afraid to try that while I was hanging.
 As a last resort, I kept the idea in mind.
 
I sighed a couple of times, trying to get myself under control, and started pulling with my finger.
 I knew shaking the string wouldn't help.
I'd just pull a little harder, and a little harder, until it finally came loose.
 Damn it! That was really a strong magnet.
I'd wanted to make 100% sure it would do the job I needed it to do.
 I gritted my teeth on the gag and pulled, feeling the string strangling my finger.
 
There, got it again!
 I sighed with satisfaction as tension in the string suddenly disappeared,
 closed my fist and... Oh God oh God oh GOD!
There was no weight on the string! My whole body ran cold. It had broken.
 
Ohmigod what do I do, what do I do! I can't get a key,
 I can't unlock the handcuffs I can't get out of this!

[Continued in part 3]


Offline cocomink

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Re: slfb-One_in_64
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2018, 01:59:37 pm »
                  ONE IN SIXTY-FOUR (Part 3 of 3)
                  by Cardaniel80

I looked at myself in the mirror. You did this to yourself! You're going to die here, you know that!
It's going to happen today: I can't possibly somehow keep standing up here through the night.
 The last sight I would see, if there was still light, was myself in the mirror,
 naked, bound hand and foot, hanging from a rope that was squeezing the breath out of me.
 
I started jerking my hands against the cuffs, hmmmming as loud as I could around the gag,
 trying to push it out of my mouth, trying to work my ankles free from their leather restraints.
 
I don't know what stopped me, where the voice in my head came from.
It seems crazy, but it seemed as if the rope was talking. I don't  know where I got that idea.
 Maybe it was that I had been already starting to regard the rope as a person, a very special one.
 I must have just imagined it that way after the fact, though. Really it was just me, I'm sure,
with some self-preservation instinct kicking in. The voice inside was saying Stop it,
 shhhh, don't do this. Stop it, don't try everything at once. You're panicking.
It's natural, but it will kill you. Stop moving, stop everything for a minute. Just wait.
 
I don't know how, but it did calm me down somehow. I stopped and waited.
 
The voice, never mind whose it was, kept reassuring me, telling me what to do. You're still alive. There are things you can try. Don't do fifty things at once.
 You'll lose control altogether and be dead in a few minutes.
Just think of one thing to try, and do it, just that one thing.
 Do it for at least fifteen minutes before you stop and try something else.
 
The most important thing seemed the handcuffs. If I could get out of them, my problem was all over.
 I knew all about them, but I felt them with my fingers, exploring, trying to learn every feature.
 They were leather, about two inches wide, each wrapped very snugly around my whole wrist,
and fastened like a belt, with a little padlock that fit through a ring
 and kept the belt from coming undone until you unlocked it.
 I tried to slip each one off my wrist, but there was no chance of that:
they were so snug they wouldn't even slip *around* my wrist, let alone come off it.
 
 I tried tugging at each tiny padlock for several minutes. Small as they are, they are very strong.
 Maybe I could have broken one with a prybar, but nothing I could do with my fingers alone.
 I considered using a fingernail to saw through the leather.
 
I don't keep my fingernails especially long, though, and they're smooth.
 I tried it for fifteen minutes, and felt along the leather to see if I was making any progress.
There was no evidence of a groove at all. I even tried the big padlock joining the two cuffs,
that the keys were meant to open.
 But since I couldn't even do anything with the smaller ones...
 
Okay, enough with the cuffs. Maybe if I could make enough noise to attract attention...
 
As scared as I was of the idea of a stranger finding me like this,
I realized it might be the only way to live through this. I started hmmmmming again,
 as loud as I could. I gave it about five minutes -- .

I knew I'd promised myself fifteen on everything, but I decided my priorities were out of order:
unless I could get the gag out first, shouting wasn't going to do much good.
 The chances were so tiny there was anybody close enough to hear it, but if there was somebody,
all they could hear would be an animal-like cry, not a voice explaining a human being in trouble.
 And I knew that sound bounce around in the forest it's impossible to tell what direction
 they're coming from: if someone did hear me and for some reason decided to investigate,
 they'd never be able to track me down.
 If I could actually say something intelligible I'd have a better chance.
 
  So the next fifteen minutes were devoted to the gag.
I had nothing I can use except my tongue, but I pushed on it with all the strength I could muster,
 in every way I could think of.
I shook my head as violently as I could while avoiding knocking myself off balance,
 feeling the knot of the rope hitting my ear, aware at all times of its grip on my throat.
 There was no sign of the straps holding the gag loosening.
 
By the end of the fifteen, I knew there was no hope, so I went back to the animal cries,
 and kept it up until I'd totally lost my voice.
 I'd lost my voice at football games like this.
I knew from experience I wouldn't be able to make an audible sound until tomorrow.
 That is, for the rest of my life. I listen for long time, just in case my cries had brought any help.
Tears were rolling down my cheeks. Another escape route closed off.
 
I looked up at the pole above my head. If I could reach it somehow...
I'd seen gymnasts and other performers who could do something with their arms
 that seemed impossible to me: they could start with their hands clasped behind their back
 and raise them until they were directly overhead, and then bring them down in front,
 without ever unclasping. Their shoulders must be a lot different from mine, I thought,
but it was worth trying.
 Who knows, maybe they learned it by getting themselves in a situation like this.
I put my arms straight out behind my back and trying to lift them up as high as they would go.
 
 I knew I couldn't get them in front, with the rope in the way, running up to the ceiling,
 but I didn't need to. I just had to reach the pole.
An ache built into an agony, but I had to keep trying... no go.
 
Straight back was as high as I'd ever get. The only way I could
get my hands higher would be if I bent over, and I couldn't bend
over. The only way my hands were going to get from back to front
was under the South Pole, not over the North Pole. And I couldn't
go that way because...

Well, let's think about it. I could push my hands down past my butt, past my knees,
 under my feet, and up in front.
 The only trouble was I'd have to lift my feet off the box to do it. At the same time.
 No way to do it one foot at a time: they were shackled together.
 No way to bend down so I could get my hands down to my feet.
I had to bring my feet up to my hands.
 I'd have to hang from the rope while I was doing it --
and then there'd be nothing to stand on afterwards.
 
There HAD to be some other way. I'd give myself one hour to think of one.
 
Obviously getting my feet loose would fix everything: I hadn't realized it before,
 but of course if I had my feet free then I *could* get my hands under them one foot at a time.
 I spent thirty minutes trying to find any way I could get my feet out of the leather cuffs.
 They fastened the same way the ones on the wrist did. There were fewer options down there --
 sawing through with my toenails wasn't a serious consideration --
 but I twisted them around in every direction,
 with slow steady pressure and sudden jerks. I lost my balance three or four times,
 each time being held up by the noose around my neck.
 The last time, I felt the noose tighten around my throat.
 I got back upright as fast as I could and stood still. It didn't let go.
 I could still breathe, but it was painful, and I knew my attempts to get my feet loose were over.
 
In fact, any further delay in going ahead with the one plan I'd come up with that *might* work
 seemed like a bad idea. I'd tried convince myself I could stand here indefinitely, but it was clear
 that wasn't true. My legs were killing me now, and they weren't going to hold me up much longer.
 
Okay, I have to do it now. I would push my hands down as far as I could before lifting my legs,
 and then... the heels! What about them?
 
I knew it would be a strain getting my cuffed hands under both my feet at the same time,
 while hanging, but I had heels on too!
 
My arms just weren't that long. At least I was pretty sure they weren't,
and I couldn't take a chance they might be. I had to get the heels off.
 They were strapped on, of course.
 
My best bet was to try to break off the heels before I got started.
I lifted the toes of my right foot and put downward pressure on the heel. It bent a little,
but the soles were so steeply slanted that the heel wasn't very far away from them,
 and the heel stopped against the sole now. I tried sideways pressure and nearly fell over again.
 
Okay, okay, can't do it. When I get my hands down I'll try to break the heels off.
 I'll give myself five seconds to see if they'll break, if not I'll go for the straps.
 
 I took several slow, deep breaths. It was now or never.
 Fortunately, both my hands and butt were slick with sweat from recent exertions.
I bent backwards and slid my hands down as far as they would go,
and leaned forward to see if I could get them past the bottom of my buttocks.
 It had to work. It just had to.
 
 There! I felt them reaching the point where they were about to slip down onto my thighs.
I couldn't get them there without bending forward. It was time.
I took several deep breaths, telling myself to take five more,
 slowly, deeply, four, three, two, last one...
 
In one motion I pushed my hands down hard, lifted my feet and rested my chin on the rope.
 I'd thought it was tight before, but as the added weight made the coils slip down further
I realized I hadn't known what tight was.
 I forced my hands along the back of my thighs,
 part of my mind hearing the box skidding away along the floor,
 but most of me just wanting to breathe.
 
I couldn't lift my legs up!
 Desperately I grabbed hold of my calf muscles with both hands and pulled them upward,
walking my hands downward to my feet. I got my fingers around the left heel spike
and pulled with all my strength. It broke off!
 The right one must have been seated more solidly somehow. Okay, strap.
 I fumbled with it, not able to look at it, and got it loose,
flipping the shoe off to fall to the floor. Hands under feet now... stuck in the middle of the sole.
 Pushing, harder... under toes... there!!
 
I held my hands in front of my shins to let my legs down slowly --
I didn't want to come down with a jerk. Raising hands, finally, as I slowly let my legs settle...
 feet dangling a foot above the floor... Fingers picking at the noose,
 trying to get between it and my throat... too tight, can't get a hold on it...
reaching up for the pole, hearing a roaring in my ears, lungs quivering, demanding air,
 red haze in front of my eyes... got the pole...
 
God, nearly dropped it... using it to reach for the chair, got it, pull now... so weak,
 fingers getting numb, can't tell if I'm still holding the pole...
 chair scraping along the floor... here, can reach it with my feet now, pull it closer...
 can't feel it under me, feet numb now, must be standing on it though...
 fingers on the noose again, not weighted down anymore, moving, loosening...
AIR!! I'm breathing! Get my head out...
 
I thought, when I woke up, that I'd broken my arm falling from the chair.

 It turned out it was just badly bruised. I hurt all over, everywhere.
 I didn't want to see a mirror. I slept there some more, on the floor.
 
I took stock of myself the next morning. My neck looked God-awful,
an angry red bruise all the way around. I had supplies for a few days,
 and just stayed in. By the time I had to go out,
 face powder and a turtle-neck pretty much covered it up.
 
I hardly had to bother pointing out to myself that I'd never do that again.
To say I'd been lucky to live through it gave a great
example of what the word "understatement" was for. I didn't think
about it much at all for weeks, my mind observing an unwritten
rule not to go there. But things fade. All experiences go into
the background eventually. In the months afterward, I found myself
dwelling on it from time to time. Found myself thinking this way:

I never got make love to my gentle, silky lover. I'd had a fight
with him instead. We can't let it end this way. We have to meet
again.

So I'm back. A year ago we had our fight, but my lover is back
with me again. I'm standing on the box, admiring how my naked
body looks in the mirror, softly stroking my lover with the back
of my ear, feeling him caress my neck. In the mirror I can see
streaks of wetness from my pussy down past my knees, and there's
a small pool of it between my feet.

Many things are the same as last year: there are six ice cubes in the
key-drop again, slowly melting. A few things have changed, though.
I made some adjustments to make sure we wouldn't fight again.

The ring on the box where the bungee cord is tied is facing the
other way this time, away from the key-drop. That drama won't recur.

So I'm safer, to the extent I could arrange it. There's still the
one-in-sixty-four chance all the keys will fall in the pouch. I
could still be trapped here. But there are a couple of other changes.
If disaster does strike somehow, I need it to be clear there's no
way out at all. So that all that strife can be avoided.

This morning I went into a closet and screamed myself absolutely hoarse.
 I can't make a single sound. I'm still using the gag,
because I like how it looks, but even without it, nobody could
ever hear me call for help, even if they were right outside the cabin.

I'm using full-size padlocks to lock each wrist and ankle cuff,
not the tiny ones. I hadn't been able to budge even the tiny ones
last year, but you never can tell. I wanted to make absolutely sure.
The chain connecting my ankle cuffs is much heavier, too, and
also held by larger padlocks. I'm positive I can't free my hands
or feet other than by getting a key.

And I have a tight chain locked around my waist. The big padlock is
not only holding my wrist cuffs together; it's also holding one end
of a six-inch chain whose other end is padlocked to the chain on
my waist. I would have preferred to lock my wrists directly to the
waist chain, but that would have made it a lot harder to manipulate
the magnet as I fished for keys. I've practiced with it like this,
and I've gotten good at retrieving the keys. But if anything goes
wrong I can't get out of it the way I did last year.

I've added one more thing I'm excited about: last year, when disaster
struck, I had too much time to think about how to get out of it.
I wanted to make it harder if the same thing happens again. So right
now there is a second thing attached to the ring on the box where
the bungee cord is tied: there is a chain that leads from the box to
a rotating drum at the side of the room. The timer is set for three
hours; I turned it on when I put the ice cubes in the key drop.
If everything goes right it won't matter: after I get a key with
the magnet, I'll step off the box and my silky rope will make love
to me, holding my neck tightly as I dangle above the floor. I
expect it to be like the time with the towel, only much, much better.
And in all the times I've tried the key-drop, it has never taken
more than 2 1/2 hours for the last key to drop down on one side
or the other. So if everything goes right, I will definitely
step off the box in less than three hours. But if not... I'll
have about thirty or forty minutes left before the timer turns
on an electric motor, and the drum starts turning, reeling in
the chain, pulling the box slowly out from under me. Without a
key. Without a way to get loose.

I expect to live. I want to do this again next year, and every
year. But that tiny one-in-sixty-four chance adds so much. I'm
really beside myself with excitement.

All there is to do now is wait.

- - - - -