Enhanceverse: The Abduction of Lady Velvet

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Enhanceverse: The Abduction of Lady Velvet

Post by Damselbinder »

Club Lumiére had been part of the Renning City nightlife for nearly twenty years. For five of those years, truth be told, it had been a scuzzy strip-club, owned by a man named Ferdinand Estevez. But then Ferdinand had vanished, and Club Lumiére had passed into the ownership of a woman named Marie Renard. She'd transformed it from the most wretched den of vice and cruelty one could possibly imagine into a spot with some real class. A gradual transition from gaudy strip-club vileness to the high-art of titillation that is burlesque helped Club Lumiére become not only much more successful than it had ever been, but even something close to respectable. Eventually, it started to be favoured by quite a few prominent California personalities, and by the year of our tale it was one of the most exclusive clubs in Western California.

It was unfortunate - even tragic - that Marie had not lived to see her club, which she had built from less than nothing, in a way, ascend to the level it was on now. Two years before the night in question, she'd been diagnosed with lung cancer: a toll for all those years with a cigarette in her mouth. She'd gone back to her native Quebec to die "avec les montagnes", as she'd put it, but before doing so, she'd made a rather surprising bequest. For ownership of Club Lumiére had passed, not to a relative, not a business partner, nor even one of the many lovers Marie had left behind, but to one of her dancers.

Where had she come from, this sultry starlet, this dark angel? No-one knew. Some people said that she was Marie Renard's secret lovechild. Some people said that she was just a failed actress that Renard had taken under her wing. Some people - admittedly, some quite drunk people - suggested that she was the long lost Princess Anastasia...despite the fact that, at twenty-seven, she was eighty years too young. Even before she'd become the club's owner, she was by far its top draw. There'd even been rumours that a heavily disguised Prince Charles had been come to America just to see one of her performances. Her name was Viola G. Annalise, but her devotees knew her better as -

"Lady Velvet! That's right, ladies and gentlemen, the titan of titillation, the summit of sultriness will soon grace the stage for your admiration and adulation - all you've seen so far has just been warm up..."
The claim from Club Lumiére's master of ceremonies was quite a bold one. The club's patrons had already been delighted by not only a scintillating routine from one of Lumiére's newest hires - a trim little Texan woman with a truly serpentine flexibility - but also a virtuoso performance from master saxophonist Sonny Rollins. The club wasn't huge - only big enough for about eighty seats, and a little standing room, plus a few stools at a very well-stocked bar. The lighting had been warm, friendly, inviting - but now it dimmed, the colour shifting from a warm orange to a deep, sensual mauve. The room seemed to cool. It was as if everyone in the club were holding one shared breath. She was coming. They could feel it.

"Mmmm..." the master of ceremonies trilled. "It's in the air, isn't it? She's near." He grinned, a sharp, tantalising smile. For those disposed to the masculine, he cut as fine a figure as any of the dancers: for at Club Lumiére, everything had to be beautiful. "Please hand your waivers to your waiters, boys and girls. Remember: no signature, no Lady Velvet."
There were some nervous murmurs in the audience from people who'd forgotten to fill their forms in and were scrambling to do it before the show started. A couple of people decided at the last minute not to go through with it, and quietly left. That always happened. The performance was perfectly safe, but the MC could understand why some people would feel uncomfortable with certain aspects of it.

He scanned the crowd for any potential trouble. A few people caught his eye: there was a young redhead talking animatedly with a beautiful Asian woman, and he winked charmingly at them. Less pleasantly, he noticed a tall, jumpy looking man. The man's hands were shaking slightly, his eyes very wide. He was staring at the stage, as if he was already watching the show. He seemed nervous. The MC found the eye of one of the bouncers, and indicated the nervous man with his eyes. The bouncer nodded back: the man was not to be ejected, of course, but definitely to have an eye kept on.

The preparations were complete. The waivers were all collected. It was time. The MC bowed out, making a swift egress - but he made sure he was in a position where he could watch. How could you not want to watch? The murmuring of the club's patrons was getting gradually quieter, an instinctive hush falling. The light was shifting in hue, the sensual mauve moving towards a redder shade. There was something in the air. An excitement, a tingling, anticipatory thrill. So much might have been said of many crowds about to watch an eagerly awaited performer - but this was different. It was far more intense. It was far more pleasurable. And, which is more, every single person in the room was breathing in exact sync.

Silence fell. A second seemed to drag on for minutes. Like drawing a bowstring to the point where it was about to snap, the tension was unbearable. The redhead and her partner clasped hands in excitement. There was stillness. And then, from nowhere, from everywhere - a voice, a voice smooth and warm, of effortless seductiveness, a voice that weakened knees and softened the hardest hearts.
"...did you miss me?"

There was a short, breathy gasp from every member of the audience. Heart rates increased. Breathing deepened. And then a herald: a long, smooth note on a saxophone, a heavy, sweltering sound like a night in Louisiana in the middle of July: hot, and heavy and moody. The saxophonist was playing on a slightly separated part of the stage, with a single spotlight lighting the spot at her feet, illuminating her figure dramatically. But while her instrumentation, simple as it was, had everyone on tenterhooks, they were not looking at her. They were staring at the spotlight on the main stage, a spotlight as yet illuminating nothing but a microphone at the very front of the stage. And then - then the blue curtain rustled. Then the saxophone increased in pitch - and the curtain opened!

She was in shadow. No - it seemed more that her body was sucking in all light, that she could not be seen until she wished to be. She stepped forward, and there was a 'tack', as a high, high heel tacked on the boards of the stage. The spotlight moved forward, keeping itself a few inches in front of her, keeping her in tantalising silhouette.

Suddenly, the spotlight stopped, at the very edge of the stage. There was nowhere else it could go. There was nowhere else she could go. People leaned forward, almost with the same synchronicity as their breath, desperate to get a look at her. There was another tack on the boards. She was getting closer. Another. And another. And another. Surely, she would be in the light soon - surely! But no - another agonising hesitation.
"You'll have to forgive me." Again that voice, that smooth voice which wrapped around one like a blanket of silk. "I'm feeling a little...shy." There was a sharp, audible breath in from the club's patrons, and at last they got a glimpse of her - of Lady Velvet herself.

More agony! She had walked backwards into the light, facing away from her audience. She was wearing a long, dark trenchcoat, covering most of her figure - but a few things could still be seen. She was tall, about 5'9" - with an extra two inches from her heels. She had dark hair, a soft black, short, but quite voluminous, styled with restrained elegance. Even though her coat obscured her, one could still see where her waist pinched inwards, curving out towards a pair of slinky hips, which even now were shifting subtly back and forth. One could see a glimpse, though, of a pair of softly tapered, shapely calves, clad in translucent black stockings. Every part of her that was exposed seemed to...glow, to have a luminescence of its own even through the heavy lighting of the club. Even just the back of her neck was somehow enthralling.

Now a drum accompaniment added to the saxophonist's ambience, giving a steady, sensuous beat. Lady Velvet began rolling her shoulders in time with the music.
"You think it would be okay," Lady Velvet whispered, "if I made myself a little more...comfortable?" Moving her hands up the front of her coat, she pulled slowly on one of the lapels, and with a sly little wriggle, exposed one of her shoulders, her skin soft and fine, a little lighter than olive in tone. "Is that okay? Oh, you're so accommodating," Lady Velvet said, with a light laugh. "Maybe I'll make myself a even comfier."

She pulled further on her coat, and it slipped slowly from her other shoulder, baring both of them, exposing a tantalising expanse of her skin: her long, swanlike neck, her shoulders themselves - round and smooth, glinting slightly in the light - and her shoulder blades, her long, slightly arched back. If she'd lowered the coat the same amount on the other side, she'd have almost completely exposed her breasts. If this had been an ordinary burlesque show, there would have been whistling and cheers by now, but the room was silent. Enraptured.

And then, manna from heaven - she turned her head, looking coquettishly over her shoulder at them. Bedroom eyes, a deep, rich brown: catlike, cunning, and inviting. Lips a soft, ruddy pink, pouted slightly as if seeking a kiss and oh so disappointed not to find one. Cheeks finely shaped, suggesting a dignity that made those rumours about her heritage sound a little less stupid, and rouged more subtly than one would expect from a burlesque dancer. She was everything the rumours said she was, and more, an unparalleled jewel.

She turned a few degrees towards her audience. The drumbeat got a little faster, taking a bit of prominence from the brass. She was dancing in time with it now, mostly with her upper body. She turned a little more, and at one and the same time drew her coat back up over her shoulders, and began drawing aside the tails. The glint of her well-shined high heels drew the eye down, and then her slowly unveiled legs drew them back up. There were cries of astonished delight in the audience as Lady Velvet revealed fully her calves, inch by inch showing more and more of her scarce covered skin, until finally her thighs came into view: supple, smoother even than the silk stockings which covered them, curving perfectly from her slinky hips. Her legs almost fully revealed, it was obvious now just how long they were, yet another feature of the dark-eyed beauty that gave an impression that the gods had been beyond generous with her: they were easily half her total height, and her high heels accentuated this to such an extent that it would have looked silly on many other women - but not on her. Not on Lady Velvet. Pulling the coat back further and further, she even revealed the frilly tops of the stockings, which pinched slightly into the yielding flesh of her thighs, a small indentation that gave promise of just how...soft Lady Velvet's sumptuous body was.

All eyes were fixed on her with hypnotic focus. She was showing them the bare tops of her silky thighs, and every inch of skin was another treasure. The redhead in the audience could feel sweat between the fingers of her partner, and could feel herself panting. She wasn't the only one - the man that the MC had spotted earlier was sweating profusely, so agitated by the achingly erotic display that he had broken the synchronisation of his breathing. He was tempted. Desperately tempted.

But even his nervous anxiety could not survive long in Lady Velvet's presence. She noticed him, or so it seemed, then laughed, and twirled, and in one deft movement threw her coat off entirely. The gasps turned into outright moans of pleasure, as Lady Velvet revealed herself - almost - completely.
"Jesus fucking Christ," the redhead in the audience gasped, her pale hands trembling. Certainly, appeal to the divine was not unwarranted under the circumstances. Lady Velvet was dressed in nothing but high heels, stockings, a kind of bodice which combined the functions of a leotard - and a corset.

The full effect of her scandalous, but somehow elegant costume was revealed now. The restrictive tightness of the corset against her waist drew the eye up over her stomach, right up to her plump, womanly breasts: buxom, certainly, but in perfect proportion to the rest of her commanding no more than their fair share of attention. They heaved against the confines of the corset, emphasising them to an extraordinarily tantalising extent, as if with every breath she begged someone to free her, to strip her completely. Even showing off so much she still seemed to tease. One could see, now, that her smooth, naked shoulders were set a little wider than most women's, but this did not detract from Lady Velvet's femininity: rather it added to it, with the way they sloped at such a gentle gradient from her slender neck, and the way this served to leave her elegant décolletage as a sumptuous expanse of exposure, leading all the way down to those beautiful breasts.

"I hope I'm not overdressed," Viola whispered, her voice pulsing through the crowd. She leaned forward slightly, and sighed, a long, tender sound that made hair stand on the backs of the necks of everyone in the room. Even if it had not been for the...unique nature of this experience, all eyes would have been on her anyway at this point. She danced a kind of off-kilter, dreamlike routine, the soft saxophone music and subtle cymbal work of the drummer giving the experience an otherworldly, dreamlike quality. But it was not fully abstract by any means: Lady Velvet knew exactly how to use her body to the greatest possible effect.

Every step was a demonstration of the length and flexibility of her legs. Every gyration of her hip was an invitation - seemingly felt by everyone in the joint as personally directed to them - for someone to reach out and grab her. It was an exercise in hypnosis, almost literally: she had mastery of every single person in the room. As she danced in an ocean of strange, dreamlike music, she took them all with her on a journey all understood, yet none could describe. Now even their hearts beat as one, literally, in time with Lady Velvet's own heartbeat. She bewitched them. She ensorcelled them. They all desired her, and she seemed with every flash of her dark eyes to return their affection.

And yet, as she began to incorporate some adapted versions of more standard burlesque routines into her performance, it began to become clear that there was something strange going on. Oh, she was definitely a good dancer. There was no question of that. But those in the know would have confessed to having seen better, certainly in terms of pure technical skill, in terms of gymnastic burlesque drama. Why, then, was it such a powerful experience? Why would every person in the room say they had never seen anything like it, unless they'd seen Lady Velvet dance before? Why would Lady Velvet dance in their dreams for months to come? The answer, as was so often the case, lay in the paperwork.

It had taken a great deal of legal wrangling on the part of Marie Renard when she'd first hired Viola. In truth, if Club Lumiére had been in another state, it would probably have never been approved. But then, California had been so kind to superhumans as of late - and a superhuman was exactly what Viola Annalise was. That was why her show was so enrapturing, that was why she achieved an effect surpassing that that even her great beauty could achieve - and that was why you had to give your permission to let yourself experience this wonder.

She had them under her power, at the very edge of ecstasy - no, a little over the edge. The music faded into silence. The light darkened. Lady Velvet walked right to the very edge of the stage, lifted her hand. All watched her do this. She drew it down, over her cheeks, over her lips, her neck. She drew her finger down the tantalising channel between her heaving breasts, down over her waist, down to the spot right between her curvy hips. Right down to the edge, the very edge of the only secret of her femininity that she had not revealed to them as yet. She hovered on this precipice, and leaned into microphone that had, so far, gone unused. She pressed her lips against it, and those in the audience who were a little more sensitive to such things would swear later that they had actually felt her kiss them. There was silence - and then three words.
"Come..." Lady Velvet whispered, "...back...soon..." She snapped her fingers, and the stage went completely black. It was over.

There were, perhaps, ten full seconds of absolute silence in the blackness. Slowly, the lights faded back in onto an empty stage, and the sweltering, intoxicating eroticism faded from the audience's minds. Like coming out of a sauna, there was a kind of relief in the experience ending, no matter how pleasurable it might have been. It took a few moments, therefore, before the applause began, but it was as enthusiastic as one would have expected once it started.
"Hey," the redhead said to her partner, still panting with sensual delight. "Can you guess what I want to do now?"
Her partner looked back at her, only the sweat on her brow giving any indication that she was anything other than completely composed. But slowly, her mouth curled into a small smile, and she bit her lip slightly, looking into the redhead's sparkling eyes.
"Yes," she said, "I do rather have an idea." Indeed, so lost was she in her partner's gaze, that she didn't notice the nervous man sneaking agitatedly away.
"I have to," he thought to himself. "I can't...resist it." Already the guilt of what he was about to do was swallowing him. But he couldn't stop himself.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

A good number of the patrons had left, when fifteen minutes had passed since Lady Velvet's performance, but a good number had stayed. The bar was well-stocked, the band was great, and the mood was still...tingling. It was mostly very pleasant. Over by the cocktail bar - a whole separate affair - an old superhero named Mister Maximum was entertaining a crowd with some stories from the old days. Club Lumiére was quite popular with some of the old superhero circuit from the 50s and 60s golden years, those who hadn't been wiped out in the Dark Days, and he wasn't the only old-timer in the joint. He had a bit of a Frank Sinatra thing going on ("Who wears a bow-tie to a burlesque joint?"), but he was amusing enough.

"And so there I am," he said, "I've got a bomb under one arm, and I've got the 1958 roster of the Dallas Cowboys in a bus that I'm carrying in the other - and I'm a hundred feet in the air, see?"
His audience nodded. They saw.
"So I figure I can throw that bomb high enough to stop it from hurtin' anybody, but I'd need both hands to do it, see? So I'm thinkin' maybe I've gotta drop the Dallas Cowboys - but if I'd done that, you betcha they'd never have let me back into Texas, see?"
As he spoke, another man, much younger, came forward. He'd been listening the whole time, but only now made himself visible. He was gaunt, with a cruel face, and he was sneering.

"But then I think: 'wait a minute - this bomb's pretty much the shape of a football! If I pass it down to their star quarterback, then -'"
"Hey, anybody gettin' sick of listening to this asshole?" It was the sneering man. The others seemed a little intimidated by him, despite his wafer-thin frame. He wormed his way to the centre of the little gathering. He was handsome, but he seemed determined to make himself as ugly as possible through his expression.
"Hey, d'you mind?" The 5'5" Mister Maximum puffed himself up. "I'm tryin' to tell these people a story here; so beat it, wise guy."
"The Dallas Cowboys weren't founded until 1960," the gaunt man said.
"Oh, uh..." Mister Maximum dabbed his forehead with his handkerchief. "Uh, yeah, I got the year wrong. I meant, uh, 1962." He didn't sound convinced.

Maximum's audience began murmuring amongst themselves. One of them pointed at the gaunt man: they recognised him.
"That's Zechariah Cullinane," they whispered. "The fastest man in California!"
"Hey!" Zechariah barked. "That's the fastest man in America, thank you very much. The only guy ahead of me got killed last month. And as for you..." He turned back to Mister Maximum. "In 1962 the Cowboys were a joke. Nobody in Texas would have given a shit one way or the other about 'em. You're a liar, Mister Maximum. You're an even bigger joke than the '62 Cowboys."
"Uh, I...uh..." Mister Maximum began hyperventilating. He was, indeed, a terrible charlatan, but he wasn't bad at heart. He was fearfully embarrassed. He worried he might faint.
"Well, I guess that's the way with old-world heroes, huh?" Zechariah said. "Bunch of fogeys and hypocrites. I oughta -
"HEY!"

A third man entered the scene. He was big and burly, with a bright yellow buzzcut. Younger than Zechariah, but with a much more conservative mien.
"Don't you know who you're talking to?" the blond said. "That's the guy who saved about five-hundred people from the Good Friday earthquake! He deserves some god-damned respect." He nodded militarily to Mister Maximum, who smiled sheepishly back.
"Nobody gives a shit about stuff like that anymore," Zechariah said. "We're in the 21st Century now, Cannonhead. You are Cannonhead, aren't you?"
"Yeah," the other man said. "That's right. And you're Zechariah Cullinane. And I'll be happy to shake your hand and say goodnight, 'cause I know you've done some good things over the years, but I won't tolerate you disrespectin' this man."
"Well, alright then," Zechariah said. "I don't have any beef with you, man." He extended his hand. Cannonhead, gingerly, did the same. Then, half a second later, Cannonhead was on the floor, wheezing with pain. Cullinane hadn't even appeared to move.

"Whoops!" Zechariah laughed. "Did you slip?"
Cannonhead was having serious difficulty breathing. He tried to activate his powers, the ability to project powerful kinetic blasts out of his mouth, but he couldn't focus enough. "Ch...Chh..." he groaned.
"Yeah you definitely slipped. Not when I knocked you on your ass, though. It was a little before that. I think round about the time you suggested that I'd shake the hand of a grown man who gave himself a made-up name like a fucking cartoon character." He pointed threateningly at Mister Maximum, who was - to his credit - working up the courage to square off against Cullinane with the little power he had left. Meeting Zechariah's eyes put paid to such thoughts, however. "Don't try it, old man. I've done worse things to better men than what I did to this idiot." He wobbled slightly, and it was now clear to all that he was drunk: extremely, dangerously drunk. Mister Maximum was afraid that things would turn violent, and that Zechariah was drunk enough to try to kill him.
"Mr Cullinane, would you care to explain why you've taken it upon yourself to spoil everyone's good time?"

Even Zechariah would not have been so pretentious as to pretend that he was unaffected when he heard that voice. He turned, slowly - which for him was especially noteworthy - and saw her. "L-Lady Velvet..."
It was she. She was wearing a long, dark robe, a little more substantial than a nightgown, but it was still clear that beneath it she was still clad in what she'd performed in. Her catlike eyes were narrowed on Zechariah Cullinane. "Do you see people picking fights in here, Mr Cullinane? Did you walk through a little pair of swinging doors on your way in? Do you see outlaws spitting grit and playing poker and slapping the barmaids on the ass?"
"Wh -"
"No," Lady Velvet said, "you don't see those things." There was a hint, just a hint of an accent in her voice, but it was so well-disguised that it was impossible to say what it was. "Do you know why you don't see those things? Because this is not a saloon in a bad Western. This is a nice place. People enjoy themselves here. They have fun. They come to relax, to escape, to be...stimulated. Not to pick fights."

Everyone who could look was looking. The redhead and her tall partner had stood up, looking intently at the proceedings.
"I'm not picking a fight. I'm making a point." He pointed at Mister Maximum. "This guy's a fossil. And 'Cannonhead' there? He's even worse. He's pretending to be a fossil."
"There's only one fossil in here, Mister Cullinane," Lady Velvet said, with a hint of threat. "And it's you."
"Huh?"
"Things aren't like they used to be, Mr Cullinane," she explained. "Yes, during the Dark Days, when the old guard were getting slaughtered by the Supremacist, people started to give the new guys a lot more moral licence - but the nineties are long over, and Martin Sontag is dead. You're, what, thirty-eight? But you're still acting like an edgy high-school kid. You want to keep on being a sociopath? Fine. But don't do it in here."

Cullinane took a step closer. It had not been apparent that he'd moved at all, but for the fact that he was nearer than he'd been before.
"Say I don't want to." He eyed the bouncers who were beginning to circle, to defend their employer if necessary. "What exactly could you, or anyone else here do about it? I'm the fastest man in -"
"Shhhh..." Lady Velvet whispered, breathing softly out. Cullinane shivered. The whole world seem to shiver. It was happening again.
"Wh...are - are you using your powers on me?" Cullinane gasped. "Y-you're not a telepath - your powers are like pheromones, right? Well you can't use...psychotropic chemicals on me...without my permission! It's illegal!"
"Oh, Zechariah," Velvet said, touching his face, speaking as she would to a lover. "You've already assaulted one of my customers. I'm...just...defending...myself."
He pulled away, but he couldn't take his eyes off her. Her beauty had gone beyond entrancing right up to intimidating. His body was...reacting to her whether he liked it or not. "Heh...is this your...big plan? To - arouse me to death?" He was right in comparing what was happening to him with Lady Velvet's performance, but this was much, much more intense. The whole world seemed to fade away, until there was nothing left in the world, nothing except her.
"Leave," she said, and her command was as divine decree. He obeyed - he could not help but obey. It wasn't as though he were unaware of what had happened: he just couldn't think of a reason not to do as he was told. He was gone in half a second.

Poor Cannonhead, who'd been coughing and spluttering on the ground the entire time, was only now in any fit state to try to get up. Even so, when a hand was offered him, he took it. "Thanks," he mumbled, finding himself looking up into a vision of loveliness.
"Are you alright, honey?" Velvet said, her voice now taking on a caramel smoothness. "I'm sorry about all that. Why don't you take a seat, and I'll get you a drink. On the house."
"Uh, y-yeah, sure. Okay," Cannonhead mumbled. He didn't want to look her straight in the eye. It was embarrassing. But she touched him lightly on the hand, and smiled at him, and soon everything in the world felt...fine.

Lady Velvet was about to get him his drink, when she happened to catch the eye of Mister Maximum, who seemed torn between wanting to get his audience back, and wanting to retreat out of embarrassment. But he had enough class to know he owed a debt.
"Hey, Miss - uh, I mean, Ms Velvet," he said, shuffling forward. "Thanks for pulling my ass outta the fire like that."
"Think nothing of it, sir," Lady Velvet replied. "I look after my customers."
"Heh, with powers like that you'd have made a pretty decent supervillain, y'know!" Mister Maximum laughed. An old man, his sight was a little weaker than it once was. For this reason, he didn't see that for the first time that night, there had been a momentary tremor in Lady Velvet's composure.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Five years earlier...

A young woman sat crying behind iron bars. She couldn't explain it. She didn't understand why she'd been arrested, why she was seen to have done anything wrong at all. All she'd wanted to do was to defend herself. All she'd wanted to do was get that horrible woman out of her life. She'd finally cracked, finally just screeched at her to leave - and that's what she'd done. Without a word. She'd seemed stunned, almost...drunk for a moment, but then she'd finally just walked out of Viola's life.

Except she hadn't. She'd come back two hours later with policemen, screeching about how Viola was a 'freak', that she'd controlled her, that she'd used mind-controlling superpowers on her. Viola didn't understand what they were talking about - she wasn't a superhuman! But they'd handcuffed her, and dragged her off, and tested her, and found that it was true - she was a superhuman, and she was giving off some sort of neurotoxin. They'd said, with a little too much relish, that she'd just violated Louisiana state law - which seemed to be almost a deliberate minefield to ensnare as many superhumans as possible - and that she faced years in prison.

So here she was, waiting for a public defender who, in all likelihood, would be a total incompetent. All she'd wanted was to stick up for herself, and it had ruined her life. She hugged her knees, not knowing what else to do, not knowing whom she could possibly ask for help. Her father was dead, her mother long since absent from her life. She had no money. She had no friends who counted. She was on the edge of total despair. And then, at the very edge of hope, providence entered.

"Mademoiselle Annalise?"
Viola looked up from her tears, and saw a very strange looking woman. For a moment she thought this might be her lawyer, but that didn't seem possible. She was dressed very expensively, for one thing. She was elegant: tall, with prematurely white hair, and an air about her that was at once seductive and severe.
"Yes, it is definitely you," the stranger said. She walked with short, clipped steps towards Viola. "You have been arrested for using a will-altering superpower, yes?"
Viola nodded. "Yeah, that's...that's right. I've been a superhuman all this time and I never even fucking knew it." In this time and place, she had no reason to disguise her Baton Rouge accent.
"My name is Marie Renard," the stranger said. "I am here to offer my services."

She handed Viola a business card, and the young woman thought that she'd been wrong, and that this was the public defender after all.
"Wait...it says here you own a club." She stood up. "I don't understand. If you're not my lawyer, what the hell are you doing here?"
"Forgive me for being so enigmatic," Marie said, with a light laugh. "I do not mean to confuse. Owning the kind of establishment I do, I am always trying to...scout for talent."
"It says here your club's in Renning City," Viola replied. "That's in California. Again I feel the need to ask: what the hell are you doing here?"
"Word of a woman of your abilities travels fast," Marie replied. "Let me make myself more plain. I wish to offer you a job. In exchange, I will provide you with the best legal counsel that I can afford." She shrugged. "I am not the richest woman in the world, but these charges are ridiculous. A lawyer of the slightest competence will have them dismissed in a trifle."
"I get a job and a lawyer?" Viola said. "I'm failing to see what you get out of this other than a financial headache."
"A gifted employee, of course. Nothing is more valuable. Of course, you would have to leave Louisiana. Uproot your life. Leave every -"
"Yes." She smiled, and Marie was taken aback by her beauty. "Ms. Renard, there is absolutely no downside for me in this arrangement."
"Very well," she said. "There's just one question I have for you before I set things in motion." She smiled. "Can you dance?"

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Penury, isolation and misery to wealth, adulation and - at the very least - a great deal of satisfaction. Lady Velvet - that is, Viola Annalise - had her life very much as she wanted it. It had all fallen into her lap, as if by grace, so there was a sense in which she liked having to eject unruly types like that feckless poser, for it made her feel more that she was doing something to earn all that she had. But there was another sense in which she had hated it: she detested using her powers like that. In her entire life, she had only used them to turn someone's will to hers eight times, including the first time when she'd done it by mistake.

That was why Mister Maximum's remark, meant pretty innocently, had disturbed her. She could not help but feel that her power was innately evil, the capacity to make someone obey her commands whether they wanted to or not. It had taken a great deal of persuasion from Marie to convince her to use her powers at all. But it made Viola feel a little better that her abilities could give people pleasure. And she couldn't deny that there was a terrific thrill in having everybody wrapped around her little finger. The way they stared at her, the almost prayerful silence that settled during her performances...it made her feel beautiful, made her feel powerful. It made her feel sexy, and she had learned to let herself enjoy that.

She didn't spend much of the rest of the night out front. She mingled a little, ensorcelled all she spoke to with her charm - not needing her powers for that - but spent the majority of the evening with the other dancers backstage. She settled arguments between a couple of them; assured Linda - who'd been there longer than Viola - that of course there would be a place for her when she came back from maternity leave; and gave some pointers to some of their newer performers. She ran a tight ship, and had no patience for divas or for laziness. But everything else was just part and parcel of being an employer, and she would always listen to her girls, at the very least.

But that didn't mean it didn't take anything out of her. Every night she performed was especially exhausting, and she found herself all but collapsed in a chair. She shut her eyes, covered them with a hand. She crossed her long legs, and began to feel herself drifting off.
"You look tired, boss."
Viola looked up. It was Luther Walsh, the fellow who'd been M.C'ing all night. "Wow, Luther," she said. "Can't imagine how you worked that one out." Despite her sarcasm, she smiled at him. He was a new-ish hire, but he'd already ingratiated himself with just about everyone.
"You know if you want to head home," Luther said, "feel free. We can shut up shop for you."
"I don't go home until everybody else goes home," Viola replied. "Think of it a little like captains on sinking ships."
"This ship ain't sinkin' any time soon," Luther replied. "Besides, most club owners don't spend as much time as you do in their joints - and they surely don't perform, either. You really need to hire a new manager."
Viola sighed heavily. "Maybe you're right, Luther."
"'Course I am," he said. "I'll see you tomorrow, boss."
"See you tomorrow, Luther. Tell Morgan to -"
"- bring your car round back? Already taken care of." He winked.
"You're a star."


Viola used the back entrance, slipping outside into what amounted to nothing more than an alleyway, wrapping herself in a thick, imitation-fur coat. She felt a little silly still wearing her corset and so on underneath, but she'd change when she got home. Sure enough, the dark-eyed beauty saw that Luther had been true to his word, and her car had been brought round. She was about to get into it, when she noticed someone was watching her.

Or at least, she thought they were. It was hard to say for sure, for they were rather hunched over, as if deliberately trying to obscure themselves. But then there was a little spark in their hands, and for a moment Viola could see their face. She recognised it: he'd been in the audience during her performance. He was the one who'd looked so nervous, so agitated. He made a kind of growl when he saw her, and began walking towards her, quite quickly.

Something felt wrong. Something felt seriously wrong, and Viola had no wish to test her luck. She opened the nearest door of her car, sliding quickly into one of the back seats, slamming the door hurriedly behind her.
"Hey, Morgan," she said, seeing that the driver's seat was still occupied, "I'm not asking you to drive me home, but would you just go out of the alley for me please?"
Morgan didn't answer, but the car started moving slowly in reverse. Viola was still agitated by that man in the alley. Her coat was too hot, stifling even, and she took it off, folding it and hanging it on the back of the seat in front of her. She watched the man fade into the distance: if he'd had hopes of pursuit, he'd swiftly given them up.

They hadn't actually left the alley, but as far as Viola was concerned, that was good enough.
"Thanks, Morgan," she said. "I'll drive myself the rest of the way." About to open the door, she looked up to thank him with one of her heart-melting smiles. "Wait - who the hell are you?!"
The driver didn't respond. The illusion had been maintained because they, like Morgan, were slim tall, and with close-cropped black hair. But once Viola really looked, she realised that it wasn't Morgan at all. It wasn't even a man. Viola had never seen her before in her life, and suddenly - alone, away from her beloved Club Lumiére - she was deathly afraid.

Time seemed to slow down. Viola could hear her own breathing, her own heartbeat thumping forcefully beneath the swell of her bosom. She could feel her ears ringing, for she had a dread, a horrible sense of what was about to happen to her. She heard the door on her right open, saw someone else getting in, followed by the sound of the car's locks clicking shut. Viola looked at the person next to her, saw a slender, pale young woman with long, red hair and a short, green dress: she'd noticed her in the audience too. She didn't have the most frightening of visages - but Viola was frightened. The woman who'd replaced Morgan turned her head and looked at her with cold, sharp eyes, and the redhead did the same, only her eyes were brighter, and hungrier. Viola's dark eyes went wide, like a deer's in headlights. She was all but frozen.
"Evening, Lady Velvet," the redhead said. She was taking something out of her handbag. "Call me Ceri. Absolutely loved the show. You mind if I kidnap you real quick?"
"Wh -" Before Viola knew it, the redhead had wrapped the fingers of one hand around the back of her victim's swanlike neck, and with wiry strength pulled her face forward - straight into a thick, damp, sweet smelling cloth.

"MMMMPHHHHHHHHHH!!" Viola screamed, as the chloroform soaked rag - for what else could it have been? - covered her mouth and nose. Seized and muzzled, her voice couldn't carry. "No. No, no, no, no, no! This...this can't be real! This can't be happening!" But Viola's denial was in vain. Her attacker, her two attackers, were both quite real. The cloth over her face was real. She was being kidnapped. She was being taken.

But the sense of reality, fearful as it might have been, was also restorative, shaking Viola out of her nightmare-like paralysis. She regained the courage that had let her stand up to the fastest man in America, and she lunged out with strong, well-manicured nails at her would-be captor's eyes. But her strength was already beginning to be sapped, and her movement was sluggish. Her blow had no force, and the redhead caught her wrist with ease. She tried again to strike her attacker, but this blow was even weaker than the first: the courage of Lady Velvet had come too late.
"C'mon, Miss Velvet. Don't be - uh...Zhi, what's the word I'm looking for here?"
"Petulant." The first word from the redhead's partner was a cold, harsh hiss, belying a rather delicately pretty face.
"That's the one."

Warm. Viola felt warm, like she was descending into a hot, relaxing bath. Every modicum of effort she expended in fighting against her captor felt resisted by her own body, or like she was trying to move through wet cement. She fought, or tried to, slapping with increasingly feeble blows at her captor's face, or trying to pull the cloth away from her, but she couldn't. The slim woman was significantly stronger than Viola, and that gap widened more and more with every passing moment. Her limbs felt heavy, and Viola realised with dismay that she was going almost completely helpless. There was only one more thing she could try.

"Mmmm..." Ceri hummed, pressing Viola's palm against her cheek. "Your skin is, like, to die for. You're gonna have to tell me what you use to get it this smooth." She kissed Viola on the wrist, before letting her hand fall. Viola tried one last time to strike her captor, but it was hardly more than a caress.
"Mhph...mmphh..." she moaned, her eyelids beginning to droop. The redhead no longer had to hold Viola's neck against the cloth. She eased her captive back against her seat's headrest, enjoying the thrill of having such a beautiful woman in her control. Lady Velvet's arms were now essentially limp. One hand had fallen against her thighs, her fingers almost appearing to be slipping between them. Her thighs themselves rubbed together slowly, Ceri hearing a gentle swish from the dark-haired damsel's stockings. Every movement, every hint of movement from her long, satin-soft legs, was so intensely sensual that it made the redhead's hands tremble.

"Mmhh...mmmmmhhhhh..." Lady Velvet whimpered, every sound from the sultry captive making the redhead's spine tingle. The way she slowly shook her head from side to side, pushing her lips against the cloth, moaning slowly, sensuously, like she was in the middle of a deep, passionate kiss. Her naked, gently sloping shoulders writhed, glinting slightly with sweat. Almost without meaning to, the redhead began stroking them, and she gasped at the feeling of her hand against Lady Velvet's skin.
"Oh, man," she said in an awed, hushed whisper, "you're so...soft..."

The world seemed to fade away. All that was left in it was her, this staggeringly beautiful, scandalously attired woman, moaning and writhing as Ceri drugged her, as she stole her strength and took her for her own. Her bosom strained against her corset, every heave of her womanly, yielding breasts drawing Lady Velvet further into into drugged sleep - and drawing Ceri further under Lady Velvet's spell. Ceri couldn't see it, of course, but Viola was resisting, releasing her pheromone into the air. With Ceri so close, and in such a small, enclosed space, the effect was swift and potent. Viola could see in her captor's eyes, that look not only of lust, but of bewitched fascination.

Yet there were two major problems. In the first instance, Viola was not a telepath. She could fascinate someone, but not control them with her power alone. She made people suggestible, but she didn't make them robots. Her whole plan hinged on Ceri becoming so distracted that she took the cloth away from Viola's mouth, and then she'd try to get her to attack her partner, Zhi. But not only was there no guarantee of this, but the chloroform had affected Viola to a major extent as well. "Have to...hold...on..." she thought, mewing quietly as Ceri's hand slipped down from her shoulders to her breasts, fondling the somnolent beauty's ripe, fulsome bosom. The battle between Viola's pheromones and Ceri's chloroform was, in a sense, a small-scale chemical war, with Lady Velvet's beautiful body as its theatre.

Not satisfied with just one medium of contact, Ceri inched closer, began rubbing against Viola's stocking clad legs with her calf, panting with lust. Her captive's legs were so long, so shapely and silky. She realised, at least to some extent, what was happening to her, why this lust was suddenly so irresistible, but she also realised that she didn't much care.
"Mhh...mmmmmmmhhhhhhhh..." Viola sighed, her head falling back against her headrest, her body throbbing with a kind of tangible, sensual helplessness. Her cheeks went red. She couldn't help it. For one thing, she wasn't wholly unaffected by her own pheromone, and for another, this Ceri was quite attractive - lithe and limber and gymanstic. And her hands were rather skilled, as she massaged Viola's breasts, the dark-haired beauty felt a pulse of pure sexual pleasure, and she felt her resistance wavering.

In a euphoric, chloroform-induced daze, the moaning damsel felt a budding sense of the eroticism of capture. She tried to shake it aside, still filled with fear at the prospect of what would actually happen if they succeeded in kidnapping her, but her body was not all that was weak. Her thoughts were unfocused, scattered. She saw Zhi turn her head to look at Viola, saw lust in her eyes too, and realised that there was a familiar feeling about all this.
"It's...like being...on stage..." When she was performing, when she had the pulses and breath of a hundred or more people in her control, when she saw how they looked at her, how they drank in every inch of her that she cared to reveal to them...she loved it. She loved the feeling of being so desired, and then was something of that in how she felt now. They wanted her, these two. In a primal sense they just wanted her, and they were taking her. She didn't know their motive, but she could see their eyes. She could feel Ceri's hands. She could feel herself giving in.

"Nhh...nnhhh..." she whimpered. Her vision was darkening. Her breathing was slowing. In a sense she felt light, but there was a weight of pleasure on her, like a thick, all encompassing blanket trapping her, smothering her. She felt her shoulders sag, her legs' languorous writhing fading into passive stillness. Only her bosom still seemed to move with any kind of force, pushing and thrusting against Ceri's hands as she massaged them vigorously, kneading Viola's yielding mounds with a lust that was beyond her own.

"Wait..." Viola realised something. Through her sleepy, delirious haze she realised that there was something, some detail that she was missing. She looked down, saw her curvy, helpless body, so scantily clad, so warm, so weak. She saw Ceri's leg rubbing against her thighs. She saw her hands fondling her breasts, her fingers beginning to slip beneath Viola's corset. "Her...hands...both of them?" She had only just realised what was wrong, what didn't make sense about what she could see. If both of Ceri's hands were on her breasts...then what was holding the chloroform cloth in place? The answer, of course, was: 'nothing'.

"C...e..." Viola was trying to say Ceri's name, trying to attract her captor's attention, but she could barely move her mouth. Her tongue was heavy in her head, her voice weak. She couldn't compel Ceri to do anything if she couldn't speak. She was hanging on the very edge of falling completely asleep, and it would have been so easy to give into it. But she couldn't - she dared not. She thought of her employees, of her girls - and she thought of Marie Renard. The woman who had saved her. Who had taught her. Who had entrusted her legacy to her. She couldn't let her down. She had to at least try. "C...Ceri..." she said, and the air shook, pulsed with anticipation.

Ceri looked up, straight into Viola's eyes. She saw her gorgeous, immaculate face, her sleepy, temptress' eyes. Her moist, pillowy lips. She was so vulnerable. So naked and exposed and sexy and weak...and yet she was powerful too. She fixed Ceri with a stare, and in that instant had her under her complete control. She could not have made Ceri do anything, but she could certainly have made her attack Zhi, or open the door and scream for help. But at the last moment, it was not the strength of Lady Velvet's will that failed her, but simply the strength of her body. She could not form a word, could not give a command. So Ceri did what her instincts told her to do instead, and forced a kiss onto the mesmerising maiden.

"Mh...mh..." Viola mewed quietly, too weak to do anything else, as Ceri pressed her lips tightly against her captive's.
"Mmmhhhhh...mmmmhhhhh..." Ceri moaned, no longer even thinking about what she was doing. She squeezed Viola's bare shoulders, pulling her close, feeling her heaving bosom against her own, sliding her tongue into Lady Velvet's mouth.
"Mff...mmff..." Viola whimpered. She'd lost. Her power hadn't been enough, and now she was truly helpless. As Ceri kissed her, as her limp body was stroked and squeezed and fondled, she felt herself tingle, felt the sweat on her flawless skin, the blush in her soft cheeks. Each steady pulse of the drug's influence throughout her.

She had slipped off the precipice now, like the kiss itself was draining her, sucking out all that remained of her strength. She couldn't move. Couldn't think. Her eyes began rolling back in their sockets, as the drug's effects began claiming her utterly. Her eyelids fluttered, her aroused panting fading into long, slow sighs. As she began passing out, she stopped emitting her pheromone, and to the extent that she herself had been charmed by it, she was no longer. She felt her body tingle, and shiver, but at the last instant there was clarity. She was absolutely defenceless, and her captors could do anything they wanted with her vulnerable, feminine body.
"They've...got me..." she thought, with one final whimper, before giving in completely, and falling absolutely unconscious. It was over.

Still, Ceri kept kissing her - and Zhi kept watching - for another thirty seconds before she realised that Lady Velvet was unconscious. She pulled away panting like she'd just finished a marathon. The pheromone was wearing off quickly now that Velvet was unconscious, but its effects lingered still.
"Ho...Jesus fucking Christ." Ceri sat back, grinning profusely. "Ugh...best fucking kidnapping ever, I swear to Gawd."
"You were careless," Zhi said, sitting forward again now that the show was over. "You sh...shouldn't have let yourself get so carried away. She almost took control of you."
"Fee fi fo fum, I smell the blood of a gigantic hypocrite." Ceri jumped forward, threw her arms around Zhi's shoulders from behind the driver's seat. "You didn't get affected at all did you? That would explain why you warned me when I dropped the cloth, or helped me knock her out faster when she started using her powers, or tried to snap me out of it to keep me on task. Except - wait! You didn't do any of those things, did you?"
Zhi let out a sheepish growl, and Ceri laughed.
"Aww, don't be grumpy." She leaned forward, kissed Zhi on the cheek. "It's too cute. You get all pouty."
"I don't pout," Zhi grumbled, but she gave no indication that she resented Ceri's affections.

Ceri sat back. She looked at Lady Velvet's slumbering body, and began affectionately stroking one of her shoulders, tracing her skin lightly with one fingertip.
"Mmh..." Viola mewed softly, her head falling limply to one side. She was achingly tempting, and Ceri didn't feel too much like resisting.
"Hey, Zhi?" Ceri asked. "When do we need to hand her over?"
Zhi checked something on her phone. "0230 hours. We have approximately two hours to spare if we're to get there in time."
Ceri grinned. "Well, if we've got time to spare..."
Zhi looked over her shoulder at her partner, observing her removing her red wig, unveiling a short, close-cut blonde crop. She saw how Ceri looked at Lady Velvet, but this elicited no jealousy. She even smiled slightly: she liked to give Ceri what she wanted. "We'll get her to the safehouse," Zhi said. "Ensure she is...properly restrained. How does that sound?"
"Oh, honey-bear," Ceri giggled, "I love that you're so understanding."
"You'd better be understanding as well," Zhi replied. "You're not the only one here who wishes for some amusement."

And so the two drove off, in Lady Velvet's own car, stealing the drugged, mollified damsel away, with none of her employees any the wiser. Except, that is, for Luther. When the M.C. got the call from Ceri saying that it was done, he smiled. He liked Viola Annalise, he really did. She paid him a good wage, even - but greed was a powerful motivator.

And as for that nervous looking man who'd attracted Viola's suspicion, he'd simply jonesing for a cigarette after a year of nicotine patches, gum, and poorly executed hypnosis. He'd only started walking towards her because he'd wanted a light.
A full list of my stories can be found here, with summaries to boot: viewtopic.php?f=70&t=32027
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Re: Enhanceverse: The Abduction of Lady Velvet

Post by Damselbinder »

"You're giving it away much too quickly," Marie said with a slight laugh. "Burlesque is about...tactical seduction. It has to have dignity - otherwise it descends too easily into mere pornography."
"I'm following the routine as closely as I can," Viola replied, with a hint of irritation. She'd been trying as hard as she could, yet it seemed that whatever she did, Marie told her she was doing it wrong. Yet at the same time, Viola could not help wanting to please her, this woman who'd for all intents and purposes saved her life.
"Then let's blame the routine, darling," Marie said, with a smile. She hopped onto the stage, still a very lithe and agile woman, despite the fact that she was in her late forties. She was wearing a tight, black turtleneck, tight black trousers. She wasn't making much effort, but she looked good. She looked very good. "Try again."

Viola obediently repeated the last few steps. She tried to be more seductive this time, and with her beautiful body clad in nothing but a leotard, one would have thought success would be guaranteed. Yet Marie seemed disappointed still.
"You know," Marie said, "you're right. It's not the routine itself that you're doing wrong."
Viola blushed. Compliments - or even retractions of criticisms - seemed strangely important when they came from Marie.
"The problem is your power."
"W-what's wrong with my power?" Viola didn't yet feel wholly comfortable with using it at all. It was extremely difficult to maintain the effect for any length of time, and controlling the intensity took a great deal of concentration. Add memorising a dance routine into that, and things at their worst could get Sisyphean. One of the only reasons Viola incorporated it into her routines was because of all the legal wrangling Marie had done to make sure that she could.

"At the moment," Marie said, "the level of...stimulation your power causes is...cheaply titillating." Before Viola could object - and boy howdy, was she ever about to object - Marie made a conciliatory gesture. "It was better at first. It was subtle. Moody. But now...it's too much. Or rather, it's not enough." She walked closer. Indeed, Viola had been using her pheromones during her practice session, but Marie had seemed unaffected. Only when she was as close as this could Viola see that this was wrong: Marie's pupils were dilated. She was sweating slightly. Marie's pulse was elevated and, as she noticed this, Viola found that her own was as well.

"You need to push it further, darling," Marie said, softening her voice a little. "Forget the dance for the moment. Focus on your power. Make it stronger. Imagine this club is completely full, and you're trying to enchant everyone in the room."
"I don't want to do that," Viola said. "Nothing good's going to come from me getting better at controlling people."
"Oh, Viola, for heaven's sake," Marie laughed. "No-one thinks you're going to become a - a supervillain any time soon." She touched Viola's shoulder. It was a friendly gesture, and it only lasted a moment, but the feeling... lingered.

"Alright." Viola sighed. "But if I end up losing my mind and trying to take over the world, it'll be your fault, not mine. You might want to get back a ways." She concentrated, closing her eyes and feeling her power beginning to well inside her. Every time she practiced with Marie, she felt that power rising. It was perhaps twice as strong as when Mme. Renard had first taken her under her wing. So some of Marie's other dancers, doing exercises and making preparations backstage, began to feel something come over them, a pleasurable sorcery. Still, it was only at the back of their minds, perhaps making them a little flushed or breathless. Imagine, then, how it was for Marie.

She'd followed Viola's advice. She'd moved away. She wasn't even in the front seats. She wasn't even in the middle seats. She knew it would be intoxicating, but...not like this. She saw Viola, standing square in the middle of the stage. Saw the curve of her hips. The smoothness and shapeliness of her bare legs. The grace of her long neck, her soft, sloping shoulders. Her breasts, pushing against the thin fabric of her leotard. Her beautiful face. Her lips...

Before Viola realised it, Marie was on the stage, and had wrapped her arms around her protege, restraining her with a surprisingly strong grip. Viola gasped, opened her eyes, and saw Marie holding her, felt her employer's body pushing against hers, saw the lust in her eyes. Marie seemed like she was about to kiss her, but with a strength of will that seemed superhuman in itself, she pulled away.
"Oh no you don't." Viola lunged forward, pressed her lips against Marie's. She ran her fingers through Marie's hair, pushing their bodies tightly together. For a few moments they were locked in an ever more passionate kiss, as Viola moaned softly in Marie's embrace - but again it was Marie who broke away.

"No," she said, firmly. "Not this. It's not right."
"Why?" Viola said. "Because you're my boss? I don't care about that." She touched Marie on the shoulder. "I've seen the way you look at me. I know you want me. I want you to want me. I want you to have me, Marie."
"It's not going to happen!" Marie hissed. "I can't...not with you." She gave a strange laugh. "I cannot make you understand how wrong this is."
"I'm not doing this because I think I owe you," Viola said.
"Yes, you are." She shook her head. "You want me to take advantage. You want to have some way of paying me back, no?"
"I -" Viola couldn't answer. She felt hot with embarrassment. She could not help but feel this was a rejection. "I...I owe you everything."
"Believe me, Viola," Marie said, "you owe me nothing." She did not explain what she meant by this, and she never would.

It was only two days later that Viola found out that Marie was dying.


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For all her years of training, growing in skill and power, for all the successes that she'd brought to the club she'd inherited, for all the awed whispers in high society of the phenomenon that was Lady Velvet, she was still vulnerable. She'd been ambushed, drugged, and abducted - and she'd been completely, embarrassingly helpless to resist. Lady Velvet had proven as easy to kidnap as any hapless heiress. And now, as payment for her weakness, her softness, she lay in the lap of her captor. She was deeply submerged in slumber, and her red-haired kidnapper had free reign to do anything she liked.

Fortunately for Viola, what she liked was simply to stroke Viola's short, but thick - almost fluffy - black hair. She had laid Viola over her, her captive's shoulders resting on Ceri's thighs. Her neck was tilted back, her throat exposed for the jaws of any predator. Her sweet mouth was slightly open, her finely plucked brow slightly crinkled. The effect was as if she'd been paused in the middle of a quiet protest against her captivity, her lips' positions suggesting a simple, helpless "no".

Her legs lay as straight as Ceri could get them: the seats weren't quite wide enough to accommodate Lady Velvet's full length. Ceri had, therefore, tucked one of her hands beneath Viola's thighs, holding her legs as if she were about to lift her into her arms. They were warm, and Ceri's light grip still pressed visibly into her captive's yielding flesh. Her breasts, emphasised as with a neon sign by her corset, hypnotised Ceri with their undulation, seeking to burst free from the lacy bonds. But Ceri didn't take all that much advantage of Lady Velvet's gorgeous, defenceless body. She satisfied herself with simply running her fingers through her hair, and just feeling her captive's thighs as she held them up, not probing or exploring any further.

"This is...the best job we've ever had," Ceri said, but too quietly for her partner to hear. She moved her hand down from Viola's hair to her face, stroking her cheeks. She squeezed them between her fingers, just a little, laughing as she pursed Lady Velvet's lips. "Man, you are out." She grinned, smugly. She felt powerful, having this sleeping beauty in her lap. It had been her plan, this kidnapping, and it had worked a treat. She'd caught her. She'd defeated her. And now Lady Velvet herself was a limp, meek captive, powerless to resist her. It was quite the high.

Alas then, when business intruded, and the kidnappers arrived at their little safehouse. Zhi, Ceri's partner, drove the car into the garage: all the better to conceal their curvaceous prize from prying eyes. As soon as Ceri heard the crunch of the handbrake being engaged, she lithely slipped out of the vehicle, making sure to be careful with Lady Velvet's head as she did. She slipped her hands under her captive's shoulders, and slowly slid her out. This wasn't all that easy: Viola was slightly taller, and weighed a bit more than the slim blonde. But help was soon at hand, and Zhi - who was significantly taller than either Ceri or Viola, pulled her sleeping hostage out of the car, and hoisted her up to her feet, holding her in place by her bare shoulders.

"Nh..." Viola sighed softly, as her head fell forward, her chin resting on her chest. It was like a bow of submission, and both her captors noticed.
"Oh yeah," Ceri said, sidling up close to Zhi, "she's fucking ours."
"Au contraire," Zhi replied. "Right now, she's mine." Saying this, she knelt down, sliding her hands over Viola's supple, feminine curves, before wrapping her arms around Viola's thighs, and lifting her slowly upwards, until with another almost inaudible whimper, Lady Velvet flopped down over Zhi's body. Zhi stood up, lifting the conquered beauty with her.
"Mmmmmmm." Ceri was almost panting. "Yeah. Fuck yeah. She's yours, alright." Quite suddenly, she darted in and kissed Zhi on the lips, grabbing at Zhi's hips to pull her closer, and pressing herself against Lady Velvet's long, shapely legs, feeling her breasts rubbing against the slumbering damsel's thighs. "You feel strong, babe? Having that sexy piece of ass slung over you? You've got her. You've captured her. Now she's draped over your shoulder...mmm... all limp... and weak... and soft..."
"Yes," Zhi whispered. "She's my possession. Our possession. Our conquest." Saying this, she spanked Lady Velvet hard on her perfect, round ass, which was so prominently displayed by her revealing costume. She didn't make a sound. "What shall we do with her?"
"Get her to the fucking bedroom, for starters!"

Ceri rushed into the house, but Zhi had no reason to hurry. This was a burden she bore happily: feeling the weight of Lady Velvet, the heat from her - every inch of her was seductive, yet with all the power that word implies taken away. She was limp, her arms swinging slightly from side to side. Her breasts - so ripe, so fulsome - pressed against Zhi's back with every breath she took. Her legs were relatively still, but only because Zhi was holding them so tightly. They were warm, and supple, and even through her stockings Zhi could feel the softness of Lady Velvet's skin - even more so on her upper thighs, a tempting expanse of exposed skin between her stockings and her corset, a sample of the delights within. She bore Lady Velvet slowly, almost with a respect for the loveliness of her delectable abductee. She did as Ceri had asked, taking Lady Velvet into the safehouse's bare, dilapidated bedroom. The tall abductor then carefully laid her down on the bed.
"Oh my god..."

It was hard to believe that they had stolen for themselves such a prize. She was beyond beautiful, almost as intoxicating now as she'd been with her powers on. Her legs were bent slightly inwards, just enough that it gave Lady Velvet a somewhat passive mien. One hand was on her stomach, another on her oh-so prominent bosom, as if even she was not immune to her charms. She still had a look of slight distress on her face, her lips parted. This time, her expression suggested less that she was mouthing "no", and something a little more like... "ooh...". Or so Ceri imagined, anyway, as she stared transfixed at the scantily clad beauty.
"Come on, Ceri," Zhi said. "Let's tie her up."
"No," the blonde replied. "I want to do something first."

She slipped onto the bed, sidling up to Lady Velvet's slumbering body. "I'm never gonna have an opportunity like this again..." She hopped up onto her knees, her legs astride her captive's waist. She took Viola's wrists, lifted her arms up, actually pulling Viola slightly off the bed. "Mm..." Ceri hummed, rubbing her cheeks against Viola's wrists like a cat in heat. She felt Viola's pulse against her cheek, taking a strange pleasure in seeking out the flow of her lifeblood. She kissed Viola's wrists, before letting them fall back down, one hand flopping onto her stomach, the other limply by her side. There wasn't even a hint of resistance.

Ceri's hands moved down to Viola's torso, sliding underneath her back. She lifted Viola a little, the unconscious damsel's back arching somewhat. Skilled fingers worked away at some concealed task, and Zhi - watching intently - wasn't sure what she was doing. But the answer was revealed soon enough, when Ceri withdrew her fingers, pulling Viola's corset along with her.
"Oh, god yes." Ceri had unveiled Viola's torso almost completely, what little of her modesty remaining to her guarded only by a lacy, strapless black bra. Immediately Ceri's hands lunged out towards Viola's ample bosoms, spreading her fingers out as widely as she could though Viola's breasts were a little more than a handful each.

"How the fuck is anyone this hot?" Ceri said, mostly to herself. She began massaging her captive's plump, yielding breasts, squeezing them hungrily, but not painfully. In fact, even in her drugged slumber, the sensuous dancer moaned softly, a touch of red in her cheeks. Behind the thin fabric of her bra, Ceri even detected two points of rising hardness. "Hey, Zhi." Ceri was nearly breathless with desire. "I think our...guest is enjoying this almost as much as we are." Perhaps this made Ceri more daring, for she began to massage Viola's breasts with more intensity, kneading her yielding flesh between her fingers, like a sculptor working fine clay. She spread her hands up, tracing her fingers across Viola's finely shaped collarbones, up and over her shoulders, feeling the perfect amount of give in Viola's soft skin, with just a hint of dancer's tone in the muscle beneath as Ceri squeezed them. "Flawless. Absolutely fucking flawless."
Zhi smiled slightly. There was no jealousy as she watched her lover admiring this woman so intently. The two of them, after all, had never been exclusive - and even if they had, they'd both have made an exception for Lady Velvet.

Up went Ceri's hand over Viola's swanlike neck, curling her fingers around it - just to feel, not to harm. She stroked Lady Velvet's jawline, traced the outline of her soft, plump lips. She even carefully opened Viola's catlike, deep-brown eyes, ensuring that the drugged beauty she fondled was utterly subdued. Ceri gently allowed Viola's eyes to close again, seeming only a shade less than tender towards the fallen beauty. That sense of tenderness was jarred away, however, when Ceri took Viola by the hair, and sharply hauled her up into a sitting position.

Viola's shoulders sank. Her breathing was slow; even. She looked entirely peaceful as Ceri held her up. Obedient. Vulnerable. Beautiful. Her acres of exposed skin, her almost bare breasts, her soft, flat midriff - she was utterly exposed. Utterly defenceless. Her captor traced her finger down the channel between Lady Velvet's bosoms, a surprisingly...invasive act of domination. As if in response, Viola gave a tiny, helpless whimper. Ceri laughed, and pushed her captive in the chest. She almost crumpled, falling back instantly onto the thin mattress, bouncing once or twice, her breasts jiggling in a terrifically eye-catching manner.

"Oh god, you're so fucking limp!" Ceri laughed. "It'd be funny if it weren't so fucking sexy." She turned her head to her partner. She looked anxious. "Zhi? Am I like, a gigantic perv for enjoying this so much?"
"Of course you are," Zhi replied. "But since I'm deriving so much pleasure from watching you enjoy it, I can hardly talk, can I?"
"Oh-em-gee," Ceri said, entirely without irony. "You're a fucking treasure, you know that?" She looked back down at her slumbering captive. She'd played enough. "Okay," she said. "Let's wrap her up."

They knew they didn't need to go overboard. Lady Velvet was a soft, feminine lady: they'd hardly need chains to hold her - but they didn't want to invite trouble, either. They turned her onto her back, and began to bind her up with thick, hemp ropes. They folded her arms behind her back, her fingers curling upwards as they crossed her wrists. Hauling her back up into a sitting position - pausing only to enjoy how her head flopped onto her left shoulder - they began binding her. Ceri focused on Lady Velvet's arms, looping several circuits of rope around her wrists, fixing them with such strictness that even a burly man probably wouldn't have been able to break them. Viola, therefore, was no match at all.

As Ceri criss-crossed rope around Viola's forearms, binding them into one, Zhi coiled rope around Viola's chest. Like a serpent winding itself around a helpless gazelle, so too did the rope entrap and constrict Viola's torso. Ropes rubbed against her midriff, snaked beneath, above, and even between her buxom breasts, making sure she wouldn't be able to move her arms in the slightest.
"Ah..." Viola mewed, as Zhi pulled her bonds tight, squeezing her bosoms from above and below, an act of deliberately sensuous restraint. It was a slightly stronger reaction than she'd given before, and Zhi wondered if she might be stirring. She lifted her chin, let it fall again: nothing. She was still fast asleep.

Ceri moved away slightly, examining their handiwork with pleasure. She saw the way Viola's naked, sloping shoulders were pulled in, the ropes bit into her skin. She looked humbled, submissive. She knew it was just a pose, though. She wanted Viola to mean it. But while business and pleasure certainly mixed in her trade, she couldn't ignore the fact that it was a business, and Lady Velvet needed to be restrained. She began, therefore, the business of binding Viola's legs.

Or rather, she would have, but Zhi stopped her. "Just a moment," she said, a wicked glint in her eye. She took Viola's legs, laying them out straight and flat in front of her. Carefully, she prised off her tall, black heels, revealing a pair of finely pedicured, well-shaped feet. But it wasn't Viola's feet she cared about. Reaching back up to Lady Velvet's thighs, she slowly peeled her stockings from her legs, revealing each of her long, shapely limbs in turn. Her thighs glistened with beads of sweat, her skin exquisitely smooth. Now bare-legged as well, Viola was almost completely naked, and both Zhi and Ceri could not help but stare.

"Good call," Ceri said - but even at this point Zhi wasn't done. First, she carefully placed Viola's high heels back onto her feet, not just for the aesthetic, but also to make sure it would be as difficult as possible for her captive to get anywhere by herself. Then, she rolled one of Viola's stockings up into a ball, and squeezed her captive's cheeks, opening her mouth a little, then stuffing the balled up stocking inside.
"Oh fuck me," Ceri gasped, "that is kinky!" She watched eagerly as Zhi pulled the other stocking between Viola's lips, cleave gagging the defenceless maiden.
"This way," Zhi said, "even when she wakes up, she can't control us. Her powers alone aren't enough, it seems. Now that she's gagged...she's as helpless as anyone would be. Now: what say we finish tying her up?"

Ceri didn't need to be told twice. She hopped down onto the bed, laid Lady Velvet's legs across her lap. She shivered at the feeling of them, so smooth and shapely and moist, her thighs curvy and lithe all at once, complimenting the plump roundness of her breasts, the womanly contours of her hips. But it wasn't enough for Ceri to admire, or even to caress. Taking a length of rope from her partner, she began eagerly wrapping Lady Velvet's slim ankles together, with two, three, four, five times, until Viola's bonds were almost like a cuff of hemp around her ankles. She put her hands on Viola's thighs to pull her close, giving them an appreciative squeeze.
"Mmphh..."

There was nothing ambiguous about that: Lady Velvet had finally responded to their touch. Not only had she whimpered, she began to shift sleepily in her ever tightening bonds.
"Sleeping Beauty's coming round," Ceri said.
"Just as well," Zhi replied. "There's nothing she can do now."

"Mhhh...mmmh?" Even when Viola finally awoke, she was deeply disoriented. She couldn't remember where she'd been when she'd fallen asleep, or what had happened to her. Her vision was swimming, her sense of hearing clouded. All she could remember was a sharp, sweet smell, and a rushing weakness that had seized hold of her. "What...happened to me?" Slowly she opened her pretty eyes, and saw only the blur of two figures in front of her. "Whhggmhh - mmhh?" She'd tried to speak, but something was holding down her tongue. She tried to push it out, but there was something between her lips keeping it in. "Mmm...ghhmphh?" This tasted strange too: a little like her own sweet perfume, but a little bitter too. And the feeling of it was..."like...like silk..."

Before she could resolve this mystery, her vision elected to resolve itself into a more useful state. And so, the first thing that Viola happened to see, as she grew more sensate, was the sight of a tall Chinese woman wrapping rope around her womanly thighs.
"Wh - wh...?! Nhh! NNNHHHHHHH!!" All too quickly, a rush of sensation and memory: her hands bound; her beautiful body stripped almost naked; the sensation of ropes squeezing her breasts like lecherous pythons; flashes of a woman with red hair pressing a drugged cloth against her mouth, drugging her, subduing her - kidnapping her. "Oh god...oh god, what the hell is happening?!"

"Good morning, Lady Velvet," Ceri giggled. "Well, actually it's only been a couple of hours. You woke up fast!"
"Indeed," Zhi assented, before pulling on something just outside of Viola's field of vision. She got the idea, though, when her thighs snapped together, bound with inescapable security.
"Nhhhhhhhhhhh..." Viola moaned, looking down at her bound, naked legs, pulsing with the shame of her captivity. She couldn't move. She was tied up so tight, bundled up like a bale of straw and stripped almost to nudity. And she was by no means fully recovered from what Ceri had done to her: a great deal of chloroform lingered in her system, weighing down her supple limbs, making her mind foggy. She felt terribly close to passing out again.

"No," she thought. "Can't...let myself succumb. I have to...find a way out of this." She thought, of course, of turning her power on them again, but gagged as she was, she couldn't compel them to do anything specific. Besides, her pheromones' effect wasn't instantaneous: they might just knock her out if they felt her using it again.
"Don't worry, Lady Velvet," Ceri said. Her hair was different, but Viola realised that this was the person who'd chloroformed her. Who'd stolen her. "We're not gonna hurt you," she went on. "You're all safe and trussed up now, so you don't even have the chance to do anything stupid."
"Mh...mhh..." Viola whimpered, finding it hard to meet their gaze. Her captors stood up, and she shrank back from them, finding it hard not to give into fear. She was naked; helpless. They could do anything to her. "Is that why they took me?" she wondered. "Just to...toy with me?"

There were other possibilities, of course. They could have abducted her for ransom. Viola wasn't a millionaire, but she was wealthy enough to be a tempting target. It could have been some powerplay from someone who wanted Club Lumiére for themselves, though Viola couldn't see - once she thought about it - how anyone trying that would materially benefit from her kidnapping. She hoped it was ransom, though: that would mean her captors would have some reason to value her life. The fact that they'd let her see their faces didn't bode well. The way they looked at her didn't make Viola feel very safe either. People who looked at her girls like that in her club tended to get escorted out - but Viola had no protection here.

Ceri was about to move towards her, but Zhi took her arm, whispered in her ear.
"...now that she's conscious..." was all Viola caught of what she said.
"Oh, don't be a wuss," Ceri replied, quite openly. "I don't think they're gonna care if we get a little frisky with her. Besides," she said, looking Viola in the eye, "from what I gather, she's not gonna get much of a chance to speak."
"Mmhh..." Viola mewed. Ceri's tone only made Viola sure of their ill-intentions for her - but she'd still gathered useful information. These two, whoever the hell they were, hadn't kidnapped her for themselves. They were working for someone.

"C'mon, we don't have that much longer," Ceri said, touching Zhi softly on the arm, then darting down onto the bed like an enthusiastic meerkat. She grabbed Viola by her warm, bare shoulders, and pushed her down flat onto her back.
"Mmhh!" Viola gasped, astonished by her captor's rapacity. She wriggled her almost-naked body, trying to get out from under Ceri's grasp. She tried to draw her legs back, to make use of the fact that they'd left her heels on, but Ceri pushed herself down too closely, and Viola's dazed struggles weren't very potent to begin with. But Ceri wasn't satisfied.
"Look, honey, I know we kidnapped you and all, so I can't really complain about you struggling." Her eyes flashed. "Plus, it feels kinda nice having you rub up against me like that. God, your legs are soft."
"Mrrghh!" Viola protested, with no intention of stopping her fight just because Ceri was getting her rocks off.
"But, the thing is, I kidnap people for a living. I'm a bad person, Lady Velvet - like, real bad. So when I tell you I want you stop struggling, I'm not gonna pretend that you're the asshole. But the thing is, you are the one who's all tied up and gagged with her own stockings so..."
"Mmh!" Viola crimsoned. For someone who'd spent much of her adult life dancing in front of audiences in outfits not much less revealing than what she was in now, it took a lot to embarrass her. But the thought that her captors had stripped her in her sleep, and gagged her with her own hosiery...she couldn't help but shrink in Ceri's grip. It was humiliating. And that took just enough of the fight out of her for Ceri to deal with the rest herself.

"Whmhh? MMHHPHHH!!" All too quickly for the sensual, trussed-up beauty, a familiar white cloth descended over her mouth and nose. "NNNNMMPHHHH!!" she screamed, as chloroform began once again to sap her strength. Her writhing took on a more desperate quality, as Ceri squeezed Viola's thighs with her own, keeping her from fighting effectively.
"Don't hate me too much," Ceri said, practically licking her lips as the half-naked beauty wriggled beneath her. "I mean, you are a superhuman. Probably best to take precautions."
"Mhh...mmhhhhhhhhh..." Viola mewed. She had scarcely recovered from her first drugging, and she could put up barely any fight at all. She instinctively began releasing her pheromone, not that it'd have helped her without being able to give commands, and anyway, it was at a measly intensity. "She's...she's going to...knock me out again..."

A mixture of scents began to undermine such resistance that Viola possessed. The smell of chloroform: cloying, overpowering, remorseless as getting sucked down into syrup. Then there was the scent of her captor, the scent of a panting, predatory lust. Then there was her pheromone, not a smell exactly, but hovering just on the edge of it, weak, but still sensual, even hypnotic at this intensity. And then, there was Viola herself. She could smell the sweat running between her undulating bosom, between her writhing, naked legs. A sweat borne of struggle, but more than that. Viola couldn't help panting a little in her own way, even though it made her suck in more of the cloying, weakening fumes. She had never been tied up before, but she could feel its erotic power over her. Her sexuality was magnified as if in an echo chamber, bouncing her own loveliness back against herself as every movement was checked, resisted by bonds that rubbed so intimately against her bare skin. She, Lady Velvet, master of the Sensual, was now kneeling bound and defeated at its throne.

But not quite unconscious. Evidently Ceri didn't care to have Lady Velvet completely knocked out, for she took the cloth away, tossed it onto the end of the bed.
"Oh, you are cruel," Zhi said, observing Viola's fluttering eyelids, her soft, weak moans. "Helpless, but aware: that's what you like, is it?"
"I want her to enjoy it too!" Ceri retorted. She slid herself, catlike, behind Viola, wrapping her legs around her captive's waist and letting her lie back against her chest.
"Nhh...hhhhnn...hhnnn..." Viola mewed, a thick blanket wrapped around her senses, her consciousness. She felt Ceri's hands on her bare skin, stroking the gentle gradient of her shoulders. As if she were in another dance, Viola rolled her shoulders, trying to get her captor's hands off her, but she couldn't move with anything but seductive writhing, rubbing her bare skin against her captor's hands. With all her strength stripped away, she couldn't seem to repress herself. Couldn't repress a need to be wanted.

As Zhi joined in, beginning to massage Viola's long, velvety legs, the drugged dancer's mind began to wander a stupor of chloroform and of pleasure taking her out of her own circumstances. She began to wonder about stories she had heard of heroines of Seacouver being plucked like lilies, never to return. Toyed with by mad villains, or sold by ruthless slavers, enthralled by mad telepaths - or stolen away and imprisoned forever by a demon which was spoken of only in whispers. She wondered if this was to be her fate, and couldn't help feeling that there was a strange...romance in being a damsel in distress. It was strange. Very strange. As these two women, her abductors, her kidnappers, fondled her, took advantage of her powerless beauty, stroked and squeezed and even began to kiss her, it felt familiar. For a horrible moment she thought it reminded her of Lilah, of those years of deceit and misery. But no. It wasn't like that. It was precisely the opposite. Why, though? Why should being a captive feel so much like being saved? Why should it feel so much like -

"Mmhh...!" Viola's mind was shaken from her train of thought, as Ceri squeezed her traps, which was painful for an instant, but then intensely relaxing. She was melting in her captors' grasp, the three of them bound together in a hypnotic dance. Ceri tilted Viola's head back, began kissing her long neck, and her jaw, while Zhi planted kiss after kiss on Viola's naked, bound legs. Viola swam in an ocean of sensual weakness; no, she was sinking into it, drugged and tied and gagged, and hardly able even to think.

She lay there, writhing slowly, feeling her smooth thighs rubbing together, tingling as Zhi kissed her legs. She felt Ceri's lips at her neck, like a vampire with her prey in her jaws, so soft, so vulnerable. Dazed and helpless, Viola continued to whimper through her gag, feeling the ropes rubbing against her skin with a kind of satisfying discomfort, a reminder that she was bound. She couldn't escape. She couldn't resist. The chloroform had made her so somnolent, so disoriented, that she could hardly remember how she got there. No longer even sure that she'd been kidnapped, she began writhing more sinuously, seductively rubbing herself against her two captors, inviting their kisses, their caresses. Her heart thumped in her breast, her breathing was heavy and shallow, her moans rising in pitch. She was lost to it, to this euphoric weakness, to an unending onslaught of sensual pleasure. Her back arched, her thighs quivered: she was lost in her own spell, subdued as much by pleasure as by cord and chloroform.

She had no idea how much time had passed when one of her abductors finally gave her some breathing room. Ceri may have been bewitched by her captive's sumptuous, silky beauty - but she still needed to use the bathroom.
"Uuuuughhhh," she groaned, sliding herself off the bed. She let Viola's head fall back onto the bed, the damsel giving a fetching little whimper as she hit the mattress. "I'm seriously considering just taking her with us," Ceri said, as she walked on slightly wobbly legs.
"I hardly think," Zhi replied, a little breathless, "that we have the facility to keep her perpetually captive."
"Lame."

Ceri stopped by the door, looked back at Lady Velvet, stripped and bound on the bed, and her partner lazily stroking her legs, taking advantage of this little break in intensity. She remembered the first time she and Zhi had done this. She'd been worried that the chloroform had been too dilute, her knots had all come loose when she tried tying their victim up, and a kick from the struggling abductee had nearly broken Ceri's nose. That had been a ransom job, but this...this was different. Lady Velvet was never coming back, as far as she knew.
"You think maybe this is wrong?" she asked.
"Of course it's wrong," Zhi replied. "I don't think either of us have ever been under the illusion that our line of work is justifiable." She sat back, leaving Viola be for the moment. "Oh, you're not feeling guilty, are you?"
Ceri looked sheepish. "Lil' bit."
"Take a shower," Zhi suggested. "And wash that nonsense off."
"Yeah," Ceri said. "Alright."

Zhi withdrew a little from Viola. She wasn't just indulging her partner: she had delighted in Viola's helpless, sleepy struggles just as much as Ceri had, but it was somehow less...proper to indulge herself when she was alone. She moved further away, sitting on the edge of the bed such that Lady Velvet was in her peripheral vision only, and busied herself with a personal hobby: playing the penny stocks on her telephone.

Viola was left alone. She lay flat on her back, her skin slick, her bosoms heaving. She tingled, she pulsed with the overwhelming pleasure of it all. It was humiliating. That became clearer, as she grew slightly more wakeful; it was humiliating. How could it not have been? They'd abducted her, drugged her, stripped her to her underwear, gagged her with her own hosiery and groped her while she was too narcotised to resist. Now they'd finished with her, and had just set her aside. She found herself focusing on that humiliation, and she felt as it built in her: a heat that throbbed in her inmost core. Inasmuch as she was cognisant enough to examine her own thoughts, she wondered why she wanted to indulge in that sensation, that shame and embarrassment.

How little she'd earned, she thought, her reputation, her success. All her successes, all her gifts had been handed to her: her beauty, her powers, Club Lumiére itself. She wasn't even a very good dancer. It was luck, all of it. She remembered how mortified she'd felt when she'd first performed, when she'd first had all those eyes staring at her so hungrily - but that had been nothing compared to when she'd found out Marie had left her the club. It was so undeserved! By rights, she should still have been in that dingy apartment in Louisiana. This was balancing the scales. Like Doctor Faustus, her time of earthly delight had passed, and now she had to pay the piper.

It had been a nice illusion. Her superhuman ability, her position at the club had given her a sense of authority, of power. How easily that had been stripped away! How simple it was to bring her right back down to being a pretty girl in another's clutches. Ceri and Zhi had shown her just how thin the veneer had been. The universe was telling her clearly and distinctly that she was no hero of any tale: she was a victim, and she always would be. So why not indulge in it? Why not enjoy it?
"Because," she answered with sudden clarity, "it's selfish."

Zhi was irritated. Her investments, paltry as they were, were not doing as well as she'd imagined that they would. And then, out of the corner of her eye, she saw something even more ridiculous than the penny stocks.
"Mhh...mmmhhh..." Lady Velvet whimpered, as - to Zhi's incredulity - she began trying to escape. That is, she'd swung her legs off the end of her bed and, slowly, sleepily rose to her feet. So slow was this process, in fact, that it took Viola a full minute to do it, with her body so tightly bound, and still so weakened by the drug. Yet she did it anyway, and then she actually started trying to run away.

Zhi laughed out loud. Lady Velvet was hopping. She could barely move further than an inch at a time, but she was hopping, wobbling precariously on her high-heels, mewing with every step, in a desperate, pathetic bid for freedom.
Almost out of a desire not to see Lady Velvet throw away any more of her dignity away, Zhi got up. The distance that had taken Lady Velvet two and a half minutes to cover, Zhi walked in about three seconds.
"Nmmmmmmphhhhh!!" Viola moaned, as she saw Zhi coming up on her, and began to hop faster. But it was beyond useless. Drugged and bound, she couldn't keep it up any longer, and she began tumbling to the ground. But Zhi caught her, gripping by, of all things, her bra strap, and pulling her back up to her feet.

"Stop running." Zhi grabbed Viola by her shoulders, spun the trussed up damsel around to face her.
"Mmhh! Mhhhh!" Viola moaned, writhing, wriggling in Zhi's grip, rubbing her soft skin against her captor's hands.
"You're not going anywhere," Zhi said. "So far we've been content to treat you nicely enough. I'd hate to have to get violent."
"Mhh..." Viola mewed, lowering her eyes in humble obedience. A wave of weakness washed over her, and she almost swooned, falling forward against Zhi's chest.
"Now look what you've -"

Zhi couldn't finish the sentence. She'd almost forgotten how to speak. Viola had fallen against her, the yielding mounds of her breasts pushing against Zhi's body. Her head rested on Zhi's shoulder, her nose brushing against her neck. She was so close. So warm, so feminine and soft. Zhi found her hands descending, stroking Lady Velvet's back with the tips of her fingers, before clutching her behind, pulling Viola even closer. She was bewitchingly beautiful, and she was almost completely naked. She began nuzzling against Zhi's neck, whimpering softly in her defenceless state.

"Don't think that...that this will...tempt me to...unhh..." Zhi lost her train of thought before she even really found it. She couldn't tell if she was breathing too quickly, or if she was forgetting to breathe at all. She looked down, and saw Viola looking up at her with dark, catlike eyes. She had an inscrutable look in her eye, a look of helplessness, yes, but of...coquettish temptation too. Zhi could no longer think of anything but this woman in her arms. She wanted her. She wanted her absolutely.

Grabbing Lady Velvet by the thighs, Zhi tossed her up into her arms, holding her like a stolen, captive bride. With three long strides, Zhi had reached the bed, and tossed Lady Velvet down on it. She leapt down on her like a panther, and began furiously kissing her breasts, feeling Viola's bare legs rubbing against her.
"Mhhhhhhhh..." Viola moaned, writhing in Zhi's grasp. Her captor looked back up at her, saw her plump, pink lips. She wanted to feel them. She wanted not only to dominate Viola - she wanted to express her devotion. And so, quite without thinking, she pulled the gag out from Viola's lips, including the balled up stocking inside her mouth. And she kissed Viola, kissed her with a passion that even Ceri had never known from her, that no-one would ever receive from her but Lady Velvet, this perfect beauty, this paragon of feminine loveliness.

She withdrew, but only to kiss Viola's face, her neck, her warm, bare shoulders.
"Please..." Viola moaned, "please untie me... I'm so weak from being drugged anyway...I'm so helpless..."
Without a thought, Zhi obeyed, spinning her beautiful captive over, and beginning to unbind her hands, her arms. She turned Viola back onto her front, and began untying her long, naked legs. Viola reached out to her, pulled her close, and Zhi was in ecstasy. "It's not enough to have me...you want her as well...you want to have both of us at your feet, don't you?"
"Yes," Zhi said, panting heavily, unaware that she had fallen under Lady Velvet's spell.
"Get her. Bring her here."

A moment later Ceri, wrapped in naught but a towel, was brought by the hand into the bedroom, still dripping wet.
"What's so urgent that you gotta - oh shit!!" As soon as Ceri saw that Viola was untied, she realised what had happened. She lunged forward: she could already feel the effects of Lady Velvet's pheromones, but she still maintained some capacity to resist.
"Hold her," Viola said. Before Ceri could react, Zhi grabbed her by the waist, pulling her away from their captive.
"Damn it, Zhi, let go of me! Don't you see she's...she..."

It was too late. She took one look at Lady Velvet's eyes, at her silken loveliness, and she too had forgotten that any but Viola herself existed. She still wanted to restrain her, still wanted to bind her up again, for Lady Velvet's power to fascinate did not in and of itself erode the will of those it affected. Yet there was but one additional element.
"Stop struggling," Viola said, quite softly. She didn't need to shout, after all. That was all it took to command Ceri's mind, and the trim blonde gave up at once.

Viola breathed a sigh of intense relief. It was over. Her two captors were now far more deeply under her power than she had ever been under theirs. She commanded them to kneel, and they did. She tossed them a length of cord, and commanded them to bind each other's hands, and they did, tying them in the front. Now, even if her spell wore off, they would not easily be able to recapture her.
"Stay there," she said. "I promise you can have me...just wait a little longer." She took Zhi's phone, discarded on the bed, and flipped it open. She dialled 911, and after a short, but agonisingly tense wait, her call was answered.
"911, what's your emer -"
"I've been kidnapped," Viola hissed, surprised at how shaky her voice was.
"Uh, pardon me, ma'am?"
"I said I've been kidnapped. Or...I was kidnapped. My name is Viola Annalise, and I was abducted from outside Club Lumiére by two women. But I - I've subdued them. Can you please send police to come and arrest them? I'm - " She stopped. She didn't know where she was. "Where are we?" she asked her bound captors.
"18 Fleischer Terrace," they replied, in unison. Viola recoiled: she always found this aspect of her powers to be genuinely creepy.

There was some murmuring at the other end of the line.
"Ma'am, we're dispatching officers to your location now. Just, uh, sit tight."
"Yes. Yes, alright." Viola sat down. Her legs were trembling. Her heart was pounding. Whatever eroticism her captivity had had was gone now. She just felt frightened, and awful, and still not safe enough for her comfort. She didn't trust her power, and she disliked intensely that she'd had to use it like this. At the very least, though, she wanted some answers.

"Could you tell me something?" she asked, affecting a sultry tone, not knowing if being more direct would break her spell. "When you abducted me, when you drove up in my car...what did you do with Morgan, the parking attendant?" It only occurred to her now that something might have happened to him: Luther had said Morgan would bring her car round, and yet it had been Zhi driving it. Had they hurt him?
"Nothing, as far as I know," Ceri replied, dreamily.
"Then...how did you get into my car?"
"Luther," Zhi replied, waving slightly from side to side, entranced. "He gave them to me."

Viola's fist clenched.
"And...why did he give them to you?"
"He's in on the plan," Zhi replied, simply. "He was the one who suggested this way of abducting you."
"He...he betrayed me?" Viola's clenched fist now shook with rage. "That treacherous little bastard!" He'd been desperate for a job when she'd found him - there were a dozen men and women with more experience who'd applied for his role. But he'd been so charismatic, and his need had seemed so real - and he'd repaid her like this. "Was that why he took the job in the first place? Was he just scoping the joint?" She would deal with him later - but she would deal with him. "Was this whole thing his idea?" she asked.
"No," Ceri replied.
"Who's was it then? Who hired you to kidnap me?"
"We don't know her real name," Zhi responded, "but she called herself 'Sinistrus'."

Viola froze. "S-Sinistrus?!" It was not a name known to all, but to those who did know it, it was rightly one that provoked fear. She'd heard some of her more illustrious clients mention the name Sinistrus: the Supremacist's subtle left hand, to go with the brutish Dextrus, his crushing right hand. An assassin of the most terrible effectiveness, and - indeed - a kidnapper of some repute. "But...but the Supremacist is dead! What the hell would Sinistrus want with me?" She didn't just have to wonder, of course. "Tell me," she said, trying to keep the fear out of her voice, "why did Sinistrus want you to kidnap me?"
"Oh, come on, Miss Annalise. With a body like that, who wouldn't want to kidnap you?"

She didn't turn around anywhere near in time. She didn't, in fact, turn around at all. The familiarity of the voice confused her, just for a moment, and a moment was all that Luther needed. He raised his arm high, clutching a billy-club in a gloved hand, before bringing it down hard on the back of Viola's head.
She didn't cry out, exactly. Her reaction was hardly proportionate to what had happened to her. She just gave a little gasp. Indeed, for a moment, it didn't seem as if anything had really happened to her at all. But it only took a moment. Her vision swam. Her legs trembled. Her dark eyes rolled back in her sockets, Zhi's phone clattering on the floor as her fingers relaxed, her arms going limp, her smooth shoulders sagging. If being knocked out with chloroform was like being wrapped in warm and soft - if smothering - blankets, being knocked out like this was like a squid grabbing you by the ankle, and roughly yanking you down into cold, dark depths. And it was into these depths that Viola sank, as she dropped heavily to her pretty knees. She swayed for a moment, and she even tried to command Zhi and Ceri to protect her, but she couldn't speak, and she fell forward onto her front, cushioned only by her buxom chest.

"Wh - oh god damn it!" Ceri shouted, awakening instantly from the spell the moment Viola was unconscious. She stood up, wriggling her arms to try to get free of her bonds, entirely cognisant of how she'd got in such a position. "Don't say anything!" She was talking to Luther, who was quite clearly eyeing her up.
"Hey now, I'm not sayin' nothin'," Luther replied with a laugh. "Accidents happen - and I know how tempting this little lady can be. Not surprised a couple of normies like you two would "
As a shamefaced Zhi and Ceri helped each other to untie their bonds, Luther knelt down, and turned Viola over. "Sorry I had to be so rough," he said, "but the people we're dealing with...would not be happy if we fucked this up." He was glad, he realised, that he got the chance to tie Lady Velvet up himself. He'd watched how the others worshipped her, how people hung on her every word, how the patrons of Club Lumiére adored her, and long had he wanted to pull her down from grace. And so, he lifted her up.

He didn't touch her, though. For he, like Viola, was a superhuman - only his powers were a little less esoteric. He was telekinetic, and so he lifted Viola into the air, applying his power at the small of her back and her thighs, her arms and her calves dangling downward, her head falling back.
"You are just too perfect, boss," Luther said, admiring the floating, knocked out beauty. He wasn't the most potent superhuman in the world, only able to use as much force with his powers as he could with his own body. But he had a great degree of versatility, and it was easy for him to use his powers on a great many things at once. And so, two rolls of thick, black electrical tape floated up alongside Viola...and began to unwind.

Like two spiders they wrapped her, one around her supple, slender calves; the other around her torso, binding her arms to her sides. Round and round they went, tightening, constricting, pulling Lady Velvet's smooth, naked limbs in, squeezing her gorgeous body. Showing mastery of his talents, Luther began revolving Viola as well, spinning her in the opposite direction from the tape, wrapping her up tighter and tighter, more and more securely. Her soft skin vanished beneath the glossy black of the electrical tape, her calves and midriff both completely covered within a few moments: her legs tied together, and her arms bound to her sides.

This was enough for Luther. The only problem left was Viola's mouth - there was not to be even the slightest possibility of her using it to entrance anyone again, so he wrapped that up too. Two, three, four - by the time he was done, he'd gone well into the teens in the number of circuits of tape he'd used to seal her mouth. With this done, he let the floating damsel fall onto his shoulder.
"C'mon ladies," he said. "We've got an appointment to keep."
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Voices. Viola heard voices - one male, a few female. She couldn't see: someone had tied a cloth around her eyes. "Mhh...mhhph?" She didn't understand. The last thing she remembered, she'd had Ceri and Viola under her control. She was winning. She was safe. The only thing she had a vague sense of was that someone had hit her. "Did they...knock me out?" She tried to move. Her limbs felt heavy. She felt groggy, intensely disoriented. But more than that, of course, she found herself again bound. "Mh...mpphh..." She could barely even wriggle. All her effort, all the...vileness she'd had to stomach in controlling and seducing Zhi with her powers had been for nothing. She might as well have just lain there and waited for them to do what they pleased with her. At least she'd have spared herself that dull ache in her head.

"Mr Wannabe here's the only one who's interested in your little club." That was the first thing Viola could make out clearly. She knew the voice: it was Ceri. "The two of us just want to get paid."
"Nothing else was ever on offer," another voice - also female - replied. "You and your...friend lack the qualifications."
"Well, duh. But hey, just because we're normies doesn't mean we can't get along, right?"
There was no immediate reply. But Viola could hear something being handed over - money changing hands, as like as not.
"As for you," the anonymous woman said, "if you are serious about becoming part of organisation, then stick around."
"You got it." As soon as this person spoke, Viola felt bile rising in her throat. She wanted to strangle him, but she couldn't even move. She couldn't even stay conscious. The blow had been too heavy, and her recovery was nowhere near complete, and she was dragged back into darkness.

When she woke, she was being carried again, in a pair of slim, strong arms. Viola wriggled a little, but Luther had done a very good job tying her up, and she could barely struggle with any effectiveness at all. And yet, she didn't feel a great deal of impetus to fight either. Repeated defeats had worn away at her capacity to resist. She'd tried, and she'd failed, and now she was a captive whether she liked it or not. Besides, lying in these arms was strangely...comfortable.

She was laid down on a metal slab, somewhat raised. She shivered - it was cold against her skin. What surprised her rather more than the cold was her latest captor's reaction to it. They tutted, and touched Viola quite gently on the cheek, as if displeased that she was uncomfortable. But they couldn't have held Viola's wellbeing in all that much esteem, for they added to the half-naked beauty's bondage with thick, leather straps, pulling them tight over her breasts, her thighs, her ankles. Despite her feeble wriggling, they even pulled one over her forehead, holding her in place.
"Mhh...mhh..." Viola quailed. "What...what are they going to do with me?"

"Sinistrus." Someone else had entered. This was the same voice as the one that had been talking to Ceri and Luther - it didn't belong to whoever had been carrying her. "The baselines have been paid. The other one, the telekinetic - he seems to want to join us."
"No. Anyone who wishes to be part of what I told them we're a part of is not someone we want. Get rid of him - by force, if he resists."
"Understood." They left again, leaving Viola and this latest captor of hers alone.

"Come," this other person said. "Let's not make this any more unpleasant than it must be." They reached forward, and began untying Viola's blindfold.
"Mmhh..." Viola complained, as her vision was returned to her. The light was bright, and she could barely see at first. There was someone sitting on the edge of the slab, a woman. She had thick, silvery hair, and she wore a dark, figure hugging suit over a trim, athletic figure, but Viola couldn't make out much more than that.
"This will be less than worthless," she said, "but I want you to know that I am sorry."
"Wait...I know that voice...!"

As her vision grew more clear, Viola - well, her emotions were not easily described. Bafflement. Raw bafflement was probably the dominant an emotion, a feeling that she could not possibly be perceiving what she was perceiving. Momentary happiness, even, but quickly choked by a feeling of shock. To her shame, she realised that she was crying. For as her sight regained its full strength, Viola realised that the woman's hair was not silver, but prematurely white: she was not quite fifty, and looked a fair amount younger than that.
"I wish there had been some other way," Marie Renard said, an expression of pure anguish on her face, "but there is not."

"Wh...whhhd? Whhd?! Whhmm-MMHHH MMPPPHHHH!!" Viola began bucking and writhing against her restraints, suddenly filled with a white-hot fury. "You were dead! I...mourned for you! I wept for you, and you weren't even really dead?!"
"I've been keeping an eye on you," Marie said. "You've done very well with the Club."
"Who gives a shit about that?" Viola thought, tears still pouring from her eyes. "Why? Why did you pretend to be dead? Why did you...why did you have me kidnapped?!"

As if sensing her question, Marie rose, a look of contemplation on her face.
"You've heard my other name, I take it?" Marie said. "'Sinistrus'." She said it with irony. "A name I only still use to draw others to me. You know of its significance, I trust."
"You...you worked for the Supremacist..."
Again, Marie seemed to react to her thought. "It is a little more complex than you might think." She frowned. "Do you know why people called Martin Sontag 'the Supremacist'?"
Viola had imagined that the answer to that question was rather obvious.
"It was a joke, once. Something we used to say to say when Stipan Tomislav was our leader, when Martin himself was 'Dextrus'." She turned her eyes down, not apparently able to meet Viola's gaze. "Stipan saw those like us as a people. He thought we needed a homeland, a place of safety for those who chose it. In the beginning, that was all we were. Martin agitated: he wanted more. We called him a fool. We laughed at him. Then Stipan died, and Martin took over, and that nickname wasn't so funny anymore."

She sat back down. She seemed to want to touch Viola, but she couldn't do that either.
"I was a talent scout. Tasked with bringing people into the faith. Club Lumiére was a good cover. And, of course, that's how I met you."
Viola remembered their first meeting. How she'd come out of nowhere, how she'd offered Viola everything she needed, and asked for so little in return. "She was...just trying to get me to join her?"
"I've never seen anyone with your power, Viola. And neither had he. When he heard about you...oh, I think you can imagine what he started planning."
"That doesn't make sense...she never tried to get me to join anything...it's nonsense!"

But then, when Viola really thought about it, there were things which began to come into focus. Marie had quickly pulled her away from her old life, away from any of her old friends or family. She'd insisted on her developing her power as much as she possibly could. She'd refused to enter a relationship with her. How could she? She planned on selling her out to the Supremacist once she'd fattened up her powers enough. She felt too guilty. It was a lie. The last few years, ever since she'd left Louisiana - everything had been a lie.

"You don't know how happy I was when I heard he was dead," Marie said. "I promise you, Viola, I promised you I delayed as long as I could. Once I...once I knew you, I couldn't give you up. And it worked. Now he can't hurt you."
"Well then why the fuck did you kidnap me?! Why did you pretend to be dead?!"
"You haven't seen what things are like for people like us," Marie said. "I don't know why it's been so easy for us in California, but the Dark Days have left a bitter legacy. The Iron Stars. Melchior the Grand. And Martin, of course. People are afraid of us now, and who can blame them? Things are turning bad for our kind. We need to resurrect Stipan's vision. We need a place of our own - a place of safety." This time, she dared to touch Viola, on the arm. "Remember what it was like when those policemen found out what you could do? They were all but ready to lynch you before I came for you! We need a homeland - and you, Viola, can give it to us."

Indeed, Viola remembered. She remembered and she couldn't care less. This woman, this woman who had rescued her, instructed her, given her prestige and wealth and what she'd thought was true friendship, a woman that in weaker moments Viola had thought she might be in love with...every moment, every word had been pure deception. There was a purity to Viola's helpless rage. She wanted to drive a stake through Marie's heart.

"I faked my death, Viola," Marie said, "to prepare. I have many enemies, both as Sinistrus and as Marie Renard. I had to be free of them to make ready the new plan, to regather Stipan's old allies. We will use your pheromones, Viola, to begin to influence the minds of men of state. We will need to be careful, we will need to use them at the right time, but we will use it to manipulate the powers that be into giving us a nation of our own."
If Viola had been able to, she would have spat at her. She gave Marie the most vicious look she could imagine.
"I..." Marie threw up her hands. "I'm not an idiot. I'll never persuade you. You'll never forgive me for manipulating you: no self-respecting woman ever would." She shook her head. "I wish I had met you under different circumstances. I wish that it wasn't you who had this power. I wish I could have been all that you wanted me to be, my dear Viola." She herself seemed on the verge of tears now - and then a hardness appeared in her face. "But I did not."

Moving with shocking agility, Marie grabbed something from the side of the slab Viola was bound to, and brought it into Viola's field of vision.
"Nh...nnhhh!!" Viola moaned, when she saw what it was: a plastic face mask, like you'd use to anaesthetise someone going into surgery. Marie was going to drug her again. She tried to escape, but she was tied down too tightly. She tried to release her pheromone, but she couldn't conscience the thought of making Marie attracted to her. The eroticism of being kidnapped by Ceri and Zhi, the illicit thrill of them touching her - she'd get none of that from Marie. And so, the mask descended over her mouth and nose, strapped into place, a hose coming out of it, attached to something in the slab's base. Marie flipped a switch, and Viola heard an ominous hiss.

"This isn't just anaesthetic," Marie said. "This will stimulate you into releasing your pheromone, as well as keeping you weak. We'll collect it, and then use it. You will help us, Viola...and I'm sorry, but it'll be whether you like it or not."
"Mmpphh! MMm-MMhmmMMMPHHH!!" Viola moaned, wishing that her power was something more physically formidable. "MMMPPHH!!! Mhh...mmmhhhh..." She could feel it. She could already feel herself getting weak. And, as Marie had promised, she began to release her pheromone as well. For a moment she thought it might, at least, begin to affect Marie, that she might use the same trick she'd used on Zhi - but no. Marie pressed another switch, and a glass covering slid into place, sealing Viola inside, to make sure her pheromone could be collected.

Tears streamed from Viola's eyes as she writhed ever more weakly. Marie had come back from the grave to betray her, to reveal that she wasn't even the person that Viola knew. She had kidnapped her. Humiliated her. And now...it was the worst irony of all. Viola's power, the ability to fascinate, to bend others to her will, to subjugate, to dominate...had made her little more than a slave. They would use her up, drain her dry, until she could give them no more. She'd wanted to be wanted, and now...now she was.

"Mmhhhh...mmhhhhhh..." Viola's struggles grew slower. Her naked shoulders shifted with less and less urgency, her long, moist legs rubbing against each other with less and less intensity. She couldn't move. She couldn't fight. All she could do was breathe in the drug, to sleep, and to give her captors exactly what they wanted. Her eyes, still wet, faded shut, and she sank once more into darkness, into the clutching embrace of narcotised, helpless somnolence.

Marie watched her for some time, and not just because Viola was so beautiful. She had wanted her for a very long time, had fantasised about her, had considered giving up her cause for her. But there was nothing more important than the cause and, now that the Supremacist was dead, nothing to stop her from pursuing it. And yet the guilt - she burned with guilt that Viola had to be her victim. She almost wished for someone to stop her.

So someone did.

In fact, this newcomer was not the first sign of trouble. Marie heard shouting, and then - to her horror - the sounds of gunfire, and of her acolytes using their powers in battle. Aghast, she leapt to her feet, ready to bring her own formidable abilities to the fray. But the fray came to her: solid concrete was shattered, splinters of wood thrown in all directions as the wall behind Marie burst open, a stray piece of concrete knocking her to the ground. Sure that it had been some kind of explosive, Marie expected SWAT officers to start swarming in - but she had only one enemy.

"I don't know what the hell you freaks are planning." A strong, confident voice. A woman's voice, proud and clear. "But it stops right now." A woman had strode inside, and she in her own right was a beauty to rival Viola. Tall for a woman, her buxom chest displayed with a tight, partly unzipped jacket-leotard combination. She had long, wavy blonde hair, crystal blue eyes, with a red domino mask adorning her beautiful features. Knee-high red boots, with shapely thighs proudly displayed, covered with only a pair of flesh-tone tights. Red gloves, and a red cape, and a look of utmost confidence.

Viola gaped. She trembled, almost, in awe of the radiant confidence this woman possessed. She opened her mouth to speak, but only one word came out.
"Who?"
"The name's Valora, pond scum."
"...who?"

It was galling, but not surprising to Valerie Orville that this person had never heard her codename before. After all, it was the year 2005. No-one had heard of her.



To be continued in "The Perils of Valora" - coming soon!
A full list of my stories can be found here, with summaries to boot: viewtopic.php?f=70&t=32027
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