It was Tuesday. Tuesday was a lot of things in the lair of B. For Donna it was, well mostly another day at the office. An office where she also just happened to live.
For Donna Muffletine, secretary extraordinaire. What was more important then the fact it was Tuesday was which date and what time, exactly, you were talking about. Punctuality, neatness and facts were her bread and butter. Traits certainly appreciated by Tarja, the resident grouch. Or, perhaps not so much the grouch as the anchor that kept a boat full of crazies from shooting off into space. It really depended on how you looked at it.
To Donna a Tuesday was a list of appointments, schedules and phone call. Or rather e-mails, as Donna tended to have a habit of wearing ball gags during work hours, making actual conversations a series of mumbles and the other party looking confused. Coupled with the eerie feeling that whatever Donna just said, was probably right.
Then there where Meetings. Sometimes a meeting was simply Donna telling herself what everyone should be doing, then sending out a memo to remind them.
And of course charts. Donna loved her charts. She had a chart for everything. A chart was like a work of art, expressing the beauty of organization, patterns and equations. They represented the world and life, in it's purest form. Distinct and clear, with purpose and direction. Also pretty colors and frilly frames.
But let's not forget filing, organizing and budgeting. The budget tended to be rather hefty, which certainly helped getting everything to fit in it.
At the end of the day, she would stack a pile of papers neatly on her desk and give a content little sigh. Knowing that her world was a well oiled machine, steaming on towards another adventure.
Donna wore a black, tight fitting hobble skirt this particular Tuesday. That reached just above her knees. It was quite impossible to move quickly in. But it did accentuate her pert butt and lean thighs. Perfect for striking a pose and making people stumble over their own words. With it, a maroon colored low cut shirt.
Around her ankles and wrists were black leather cuffs. With polished steel D rings attached, that matched her silver earrings. She fiddled with the cuff rings as she pondered over the monthly budget. Then decided to go for a walk about the lair. Working hours for Donna were not just work. Not in the strictest sense at least. As a fair bit of it usually involved Donna snooping around and/or making everyone else's business her own.
Tuesday for Emma, was laundry day. Which for Donna meant an opportunity to barge in and 'help' rummage through everyones clothes.
Donna said cheerfully, around the bright pink, silicone ball in her mouth, which sported a hole in the middle. As she waltzed into the big laundry room.
Emma barely resisted raising an eyebrow, as she knew that color meant she had be be wary. Pink meant Donna was in an unusually playful mood. Red was for when she thought she was dangerous, but pink was the color to be afraid of. Unless you where Nina. Nina and Donna didn't usually get along very well. Unless it was a pink day.
Never the less Emma greeted Donna with a smile and a flawlessly polite “good day”. No-one could give an honest smile quite like Emma. Who couldn't fake a smile to save her life. The very idea of dishonesty was all but lost on her. For such a diminutive girl, her way of tackling everything with a good natured attitude revealed a strength of character that few could rival.
Neatly sorted and folded piles of linens and towels lay on benches as Donna looked around. The humming of washing machines working diligently could be heard from a nearby room.
Emma was just in the middle of folding a freshly ironed table cloth when across the room one of her maids just came out from a drying room. A swell of hot, dry air spilled out before she closed the door behind her. A blonde girl with pigtails, wearing a simple white apron around her waist. A black muzzle gag encased the lower part of her face and chin. It had an intricate harness with straps around and over her head. The straps where decorated with white frills. She had black leather manacles on her wrists, connected by a chain. Her feet fettered by similar cuffs and a short chain. They all had white frills on them. Other then that she had not a thread on her body. Her face turned red and she curtsied shyly when she saw Donna and then scurried off, patting along on bare feet as fast as the chains around her ankles would allow.
"That is Penny, she's new. She was cleaning a guest room the other day and got mistaken for one of the guests. Master was... entertaining her for the better part of two hours before I came upon them and could sort out the mistake in identity. The other girls are still teasing her about it as soon as I turn my back. Poor thing. I think I will have to ask Tarja to help get them to remember their manners. Really... just incorrigible I'm afraid..."
" Ah chahn nehph Pahryah nuuw, ihf ufh'n nuhkeh?"
"Would you? You're a dear. Yes please do, if you see her."
Donna knew her way around well and started going through a pile of Nina's assorted skirts and socks, humming to herself.
"Hmmhumm, neehn ah hahnn? mmmhumm huu..."
"Thank you dear, but only if you have the time. Otherwise me and the girls will manage."
Donna took a white ankle sock with a panda bear on and folded it up paired with a light pink ankle sock, with no pandas on at all. Before putting it neatly in the sock basket. 'Hah! That will teach her to spill hot cocoa over last weeks budget report...' Donna mused to herself with as mischievous ball-gagged grin. She might have been less satisfied if she realized that Nina already had a knack for loosing socks all on her own.
Emma pretended not to notice. At least it was not on the level of Miu's pranks. That would have been a proper problem. But one should not speak of the Miu, for that's when she tended to be lurking in a nearby shadow. Though she wasn't at the moment. Not nearby at least.
Instead Miu was lurking in the kitchen. Or rather it was hard to tell if she was napping or lurking. Whatever she was doing she had made sure to do it on the kitchen bench, right next to Nina who was preparing a plate of cookies for the oven.
Nina kept glancing at Miu who was laying there all cuddled up. Apparently or probably, resting. Suspecting the capricious vixen to pounce on her cookies. Or her, at any moment. All depending on if she wanted to eat, play or cuddle.
But even with a Miu hanging over her shoulder, Nina kept painstakingly shaping the dough into little straightjacket's. Nina wasn't usually this careful about what she was doing. But cookies was serious business and something not even Emma could best her in.
Tuesday wasn't really cookie day though. Any odd day was cookie day. For the most part Nina didn't keep track of boring things like what day it was.
Neither did Miu for that matter. Then again it was hard to tell what Miu knew or didn't know. Although if you didn't want her to know something, she probably already did. Or made sure you thought she did, so you would let her know, thinking she already knew anyway.
It was impossible to determine what Miu knew just by looking at her. She had a deadly poker face. No matter what your hand was, she was always looking down on you with the calm, detached confidence of a royal straight flush. And since she had no qualms when it came to cheating, you had to assume she actually has one.
Strip poker was actually played in the lair, on occasion. But it was a rather complicated affair. It involved not only removing items of clothing, but also adding or removing various bondage items. Furthermore the house rules where intentionally overly complicated. To confuse anyone new to the game into loosing rather quickly if they did not pay attention.
Nina's infamous loosing streaks on the other hand were always carefully calculated. Nina only won at poker when money was involved.
By the time Donna arrived in the kitchen, both Nina and Miu were nowhere to be seen. A row of neatly packaged little cookie jars left lined up on the table. The last one however was tipped over and empty, the lid lying on the floor next to a trail of crumbs. For some reason one of Nina's socks was also discarded on the floor, close by.
Donna quietly tiptoed over to the jars and picked out the last cookie from the bottom of the open one. She wrapped it in a paper towel, to save it for later.
Sensing an air of trouble though, she then tiptoed out the same way she came. If she had stayed around a while longer, she might have heard Nina. Who was currently stuck inside a nearby cupboard, waiting for someone who could rescue her from a rather tight predicament.
After Donna closed the door behind her, a muffled.
“hulluh? unnyfun fhureh?”
And some inquisitive little knocking sounds could be heard. If only Donna had worn heels that day, like she usually did.
“So you're saying Microfoam is still better?”
“You didn't like the other bandage wrap?”
“nuh, ip'f fuuhnuh moo.”
"hmmm. Sorry, what?"
Nadja was distracted for a moment by Tracy's ample cleavage.
"Uh hauuhn, uhm'p fhuuhn... huy! uhfuh upf huruh!"
"Oh, yeah. Is just that blouse looks really good on you..."
Tracy didn't answer, but she always averted her eyes when she was self-conscious. Looking at everything but Nadja, nor herself. She did like that blouse, it was a brand new, unusually fancy purple number. Tracy didn't buy clothes very often. A good part of her wardrobe was old t-shirts with motifs from obscure old kung-fu movies or giveaways from gaming conventions. Tracy didn't like crowds much, but she had a surprising amount of connections with con-volunteer staff.
When curled up by herself in her little den, she liked to just stay in panties and a t-shirt that was a size or two too big. In her absent minded world that was close enough to a skirt.
"That blushing look suits you even better!"
Nadja said with a chipper giggle.
Tracy said nothing more. When she was this embarrassed, she didn't need a gag to keep her quiet. She squirmed a bit, but with her hands tied behind her back this only drew more attention to her shapely assets.
"You really should let Nina take you out shopping more often, Laskovaya Moya..."
She put her hand to Tracy's tape covered cheek, to see if it was indeed blushing warm. Then started fiddling with Tracy's blouse. Soon her mobile buzzed to life, playing the first few notes from Phantom of the opera. She picked it up and read the new text message.
It said 'no more, please...'
Tracy was quite adept at typing behind her back, with one hand no less.
"Oh, like you can stop me..."
Nadja put the phone down, screen down and started tickling Tracy instead, who squealed and tittered, trying to shy away. Smiling behind the elastic tape covering her lips. The phone didn't avail her now when Nadja was ignoring her messages, so she dropped it. With her ankles as well as thighs tightly bound together, she could not get very far, but tried to wiggle away from the merciless, freckled little imp anyway.
Nadja knew just where the sweet spots where. She got all the juicy details she wanted out of Nina, who had learned first hand. Soon Tracy was writhing around on her pile of cushions, nostrils flaring, gasping for air.
The cushions had formed a small fort not long ago, where Tracy was hiding from the world when Nadja decided Tracy would be the perfect victim to try some new brands of tape on.
Unbeknownst to the two of them, they where being watched from the shadows by a nosy Donna, peeking in through the door that had been left ajar. Tracy's not so secret, secret den was usually dimly lit. Various computer screens littered around the room seemed to be the only light source.
Spying on people was a sport Donna shared with Miu. Who might very well have been somewhere close by, keeping an eye on Donna, just as she was keeping a pair of intrigued eyes on the two girls having a one sided wrestling match. Though Miu was busy at the moment, keeping an eye on her own victim back in the kitchen. To make sure she was rescued properly. Eventually.
"Find anything interesting?"
Donna turned around, startled and wide eyed. To find Tarja standing in the hallway, arms crossed under her breasts and with what might have been an amused little smirk at the corner of her mouth. Otherwise she was businesslike as ever. Wearing jeans and a leather jacket over a blue crop top that showed off her toned waist. Looked like she had just been out.
Donna put her finger up before her ball-gagged lips to hush Tarja. The gesture looked a bit odd. Perhaps she just realized that, as Donna took a moment to compose herself.
"Is Tracy in there?"
Donna replied, but with a meaning look.
"...but she's not alone?"
"Nu, feh'fh nuph."
"Look, is it a bad time, or a really bad time. Because I need to speak with Tracy."
"...and it's important."
Donna closed her lips around the pink ball in her mouth and thought for a moment. Then suddenly knocked politely on the door and scampered away to hide around the next corner of the hallway.
Tarja rolled her eyes but went along with it. It wasn't that often Donna showed her more playful side. So Tarja let her have her sillier moments. Because all in all, Donna was almost as reliable as Emma. At least Donna had the decency of warning everyone when she was in one of her moods.
Donna had considered what Tarja would look like if she color coordinated according to her mood. But all she could think of was that it would probably just be 50 shades of blue. Running from Midnight Blue to... But that pun had given such a bad taste in her mouth, she gave up on that train of thought.
Nadja came to open the door.
"Oh, hey Tarja! What's up?"
Tarja was just about to respond, but then her phone started howling a Wintersun riff. She picked it up and read it's message. 'help me!', it simply stated.
Tarja gave up a sigh and stared down at the redheaded pixie, who gave her an innocent smile. All too innocent.
Tarja hunched down and grabbed Nadja by her waist, deftly hoisting her up over her shoulder. Nadja gave up a high pitched yelp.
Stopping only to get a good hold around the slippery little girl, Tarja continued on into the dark room.
"Alright, where have you hid her?"
Tarja said, matter-of-factly, before she gave Nadja's behind a firm smack. She did not have time for games.
Nadja sang out in a series of loud squeaks at the brusque treatment. But made no effort to divulge her evil schemes. Kicking her legs wildly in the air.
"You will get nothing out of me, you amazonian cailleach!"
She said, hardly containing her glee.
Tarja took a look around the shady den full of chocolate wrappers, discarded manuals and open Blu-ray cases whose disks where long lost. And started poking around with her feet. She soon found that some of the big pillows and cushions laying about in a pile where not moving the way they should. Or perhaps moving a bit more then they aught to, depending on how you looked at it.
Setting the wily escape artist back down on her feet, Tarja kept a strong grip around Nadjas wrist, good as any handcuff and gave her a stern look that meant she would stay in this room, by her own way, or the hard way. Then started moving the pillows away one by one using her other hand. Revealing a trapped Tracy, stuck in a stringent hogtie. Holding her phone clenched in her bound hands.
Her mouth had been stuffed full and her head encased in stretchy white Microfoam tape, wrapped up to her nose and around her head, over her ears. Then more tape wrapped over her head and under her chin. Unable to flex her jaw, the stuffing in her mouth was packed in tightly. It could be made out by the bulge under the tape, in-between the contours of her full lips.
"Eh, you mean Tracy? I wasn't hiding her, just keeping her safe, you know..."
"Safe from what, playing too much video games?"
"Why yes! Exactly that! Got her on the clock for some off-line time from these dreadful computers of hers. It's doing wonders you know."
"I think Tracy can take care of that herself."
Tarja weren't exactly sure even she fully believed those words as they passed her lips though.
"Aaaaand, she's also helping me. Research. For science purposes."
"I guess science is a cruel mistress then."
"That she is."
Nadja said, beaming perkily.
"Speaking of cruel. I have some experiments of my own that I think you will help me with later..."
"Oh... I guess, if I'm free. I'll just check with Donna if I have any appointments today."
"Trust me, you won't be."
Tarja's tone was ominous.
"Don't be so sure, maybe I'll hire Miu to spirit me away from here."
"Miu-chan always has time for me. Unless she's, well vanished from the face of the earth. As she does."
"Besides, when did being abducted by Miu ever get you out, of a tight situation?"
"Touché, gýgr. I guess there is truly no escape from the weaves of fate."
"I am a what now? Never mind... But weaving you say. That adds another experiment..."
"Uh oh... when will I learn to keep my mouth shut."
"I can teach you that too. Don't worry. But now I have more important things to discuss with Tracy. We need her help to Shanghai some corporate chick. With her 'help' we can close in on B's next acquisition. It's a whole overly complicated scheme. But B knows what he wants. You know how stubborn he can be. So I want her talkative now. Untangle this mess you've made... "
Donna stood inquisitively eavesdropping on the conversation. She knew that Nadja had nowhere she needed to be, so Donna mused over what sort of punishment Tarja had in mind for Nadja. Whatever it was, it had to be something intricate. Anything simple would just serve to bore Nadja. Certainly not keep her in place in any case.
But Donna didn't stick around just because she liked to keep tabs on all the lairs residents. She had a job to do.
As Tarja left, leading Nadja before her, on a leash no less. Prodding her to move along. Donna cleared her throat with a polite cough.
"Was there something else Donna?"
"Yehfh. Emmah ahfhkehn meh phu pehnn ufh fhe neehnfh ufhr huupfh chafhphihfhihng peh maihnfh ahgahihn. Phey ahreh pfehchkihng un peh nehw gihrl."
"They're what? The new girl? Penny? She certainly is a meek one. I can see how she could be singled out. Well those girls never learn do they... Everyone could use a good lesson around here... Change of plans Red. I'm enlisting you as sergeant punishment. But don't you think for a second I'll let you forget who is boss around here."
"And who is the bosses lackey?"
Nadja edged in sarcastically.
"Ay ay captain..."
Donna felt Nadja might need a hand in being drafted into service. So she decided she had time to tag along. With some luck she could get a leash too.
Teaching the maid staff some restraint took up the better part of the afternoon. With sporadic assistance from Donna. Sometimes more interfering then helping, if you asked Tarja. Which was still far better then getting help from Nina or Miu, who where both busy elsewhere. As that tended to devolve into pure sabotage.
None the less, the point was made. A rather sharp point, but certainly educational. As the wide eyed junior maids found out what it means to be on the receiving end of a severe teasing.
Once finally back in her office Donna found B waiting, leaning back onto her desk. He looked a bit worn out.
"Hehnnu fhihr, nihn ufh hufhph geph buachk?"
"It's been a long day Donna... Who knew a car chase could be so tedious? Real life has way too few explosions and not enough jumping over draw bridges. Still, I got me a pair of cute officers trussed up in the trunk by the end of it, so I guess that's a fair trade."
Donna passed by him and went on to tidy up some paperwork for him to look over later. B followed her, looking over her shoulder as she shuffled papers around.
"These girls are going to get a lot of overtime. Maybe I should actually pay those tickets they wanted to give me. You know, they work so hard for it. Can we do that? Anonymously of course."
"Of chourfeh. Weh'veh mahneh dunahphihunfh buehfureh, I chahn fihnn fhumeh achounphfh phu ruupeh peh munehu phrough."
Donna took out a pad and started making notes. She could use a tablet or phone to make notes on, but her handwriting was impeccable. She liked putting everyone else to shame with her fancy lettering.
"...and add two police uniforms to the inventory. They just got confiscated. Maybe you'd like to try one on later?"
"If ufh nhihkeh."
B stepped in closer, casually putting his hand around Donna's waist.
"The birds in blue get so indignant when you use their own cuffs on them. I'm not sure why. They're not even that good, as cuffs go."
B took Donna's cuff adorned hand, just as she put her notepad down. Holding it up as a case in point. Then leaned in to lightly brush his nose along her neck.
"Would you like to go make them jealous? See how uncomfortable we can make them..."
Donna let out a little moan, as she smiled around her pink ball. No, life in the lair was certainly not all work...