Gromet's PlazaPackaged, Encasement & Objectification Stories

How Did I End Up in This Box?

by Vaughan

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© Copyright 2018 - Vaughan - Used by permission

Storycodes: Solo-F; advert; magician; lingerie; clothes; MF+/f; stage; show; magic-act; steel; box; rope; cuffs; locks; encased; stuck; strip; reveal; cons; X

How did I end up in this box? I don’t know.

Well, that’s not entirely true; I know exactly what lead up to me being in this box, except I do not know how I got into the box.

You seem puzzled. Let me explain what I know.

It all began when I read an ad in the local paper. It read:-

Magician seeks female “audience volunteer” for magic act.
Must be outgoing (probably actress, perhaps exhibitionist), able to keep a secret and available to perform on 1st September, no rehearsals required, standard rates and expenses paid.
Initial contact by email, please attach picture.

I was intrigued, so emailed my picture from a disposable email address (you can’t be too careful)

The following day I received a reply thanking me for my interest and photo saying he would be in touch in a few days, when he could gauge the response to his ad. Initially, I was surprised that a potential employer had bothered to acknowledge the receipt of an application.

Later that week, I received another email saying that I had the job and asking a myriad of details, like dress size, collar size and such. He also asked some questions about how far I was willing to go such as skimpiness of costume and whether I had had fantasies of being a magician’s assistant. He asked me to send another picture of the most revealing clothes I had ever worn in public, with a description of the general circumstances and how I’d felt at the time. He said that this would allow him to tailor the show so I wouldn’t feel too uncomfortable, but I would experience some thrills along the way. What he did not ask for was anything that would identify me.

My reply email contained all the measurements he required. The picture I sent was from the production of a local amateur play I had been in; It showed me on stage in a bra, panties and stockings; I told him that while beforehand I had been extremely nervous thinking people would think I was some sort of hussy, when it came to it I got lots of support from the rest of the cast for being brave enough to do it, in fact (for a bet) I had done the closing walk-down in that costume and got such a warm response from the audience I did it each night thereafter.

His next email arrived after a week telling me that there was a letter of instruction waiting for me at the offices of the local newspaper.

I collected the package the following day. It contained the letter and a couple of unexpected items; the first was a set of four tickets to the performance I was to be involved in and the second was a credit card. The letter explained that the tickets were so I could bring some friends; partly so I could feel confident that I was with people who would look out for me, but mainly so that it increased the impression I was an ordinary audience member (the letter said I should not let my companions know I was to be part of the show and to bring at least one man). The credit card was to cover my pre-show expenses such as a taxi to and from the venue, a meal (if necessary) and the new outfit I was to wear. The specifications for the costume were quite general, but it added that if they were damaged during the performance I would be supplied with suitable replacements; it seemed that I was to buy a costume in my style, but that would suit the act I was to participate in.

Finding three friends to go with (take along?) was quite easy. Helen and Brian were a couple I met through the theatre; she was one of the better singers in the group and he took a leading role in making scenery and props (he was a magic fan, and often tried (but never succeeded) to persuade the director of our Christmas show that he could build them a magical prop). The third member of our party was Emma, who was to be director of the Christmas show this year (Brian’s suggestion; still lobbying for a magic illusion in the Christmas show).

Explaining how I could afford the tickets was also simple, as I had had a modest win on the lottery and took the chance to exaggerate it a bit. So my friends weren’t suspicious about me getting them tickets to a show, pre-booking a taxi to and from it, offering to pay for a meal and getting myself a new outfit.

The clothes shopping trip with Helen was fun. I got a lovely royal blue silky skirt that covered my legs down to my ankles and swished beautifully (The magician had specified “calf- to ankle-length skirt, not tight; shoes must be visible”). Next I bought a blouse with short sleeves in light cotton; this was a slightly paler shade of cornflower blue (“top with sleeves, not baggy or tight”). The next shop we visited was the shoe shop where I bought a pair of strappy sandals with 3 inch heels in a darker shade of blue (“shoes with moderate heel, fastening with a buckle at the ankle”).

The following day I went to a lingerie shop to buy a matching bra, panties, suspender belt and a pair of stockings (“bra, panties and stockings that you would not mind being seen in”). The colour I chose was a pale blue and the stockings were black.

Final instructions arrived by email a few days before, the main thrust was be on time, let us know you have arrived by “signing up” to be an audience witness for the close up magic, enjoy the show and come up when you are called. He said he would provide an exciting and interesting experience and a DVD of the show after, so I could see what I might miss in the process of participating.

The day of the show was pleasantly warm with a light breeze, so when it came to leaving home in my new clothes I decided not to take a coat just a colour-coordinated handbag. Our rendezvous was outside our usual drinking hole, so when I arrived I spotted Helen and Brian inside. I waved and they saw me and quickly downed their drinks and came out to join me. Moments later, Emma drove past looking for a parking spot. Minutes later, she returned on foot looking somewhat flushed. She launched into a story of how she had found a space only to be harassed by another driver, who seemed to be excessively impatient. Fortunately, we were spared the full saga (Emma can spend hours describing a two minute incident) when the taxi turned up. We got in the taxi and conversation turned to what we might be seeing this evening.

Brian had done some looking up on the internet and told us this was not your usual family magic show but something a bit more risqué. He told us the magician’s signature trick involved getting a lady member of the audience for a card trick and “failing to find” the signed card that the woman had returned to the deck only for it to be found inside the top of her stockings and written in her lipstick on her knickers.

Of course, I thought that was what I had been hired for and felt relieved that I had brought my handbag and makeup.

Some of the other stuff that Brian described did not even sound plausible, so I let him chatter about vanishing showgirls and peoples’ bottom halves being swapped, while I wondered what kind of banter a magician would use to get a woman to show her panties to a theatre audience. I thought it might be fun to play the shy woman, and thus make him work hard to prove the name of the card was written on my underwear.

When we arrived in town, we had a light meal at a café a few doors from the theatre. The subject turned whether any of us wanted to be a magician’s assistant. Emma said she had no desire to be an assistant; she only wanted to see what might be adaptable to a small town Christmas (Brian’s seed of an idea seemed to be growing in Emma’s mind). Brian, of course, said he wanted to be the magician, and Helen expressed the thought that if she could be guaranteed no pain and a full restoration being sawn in half might be an interesting experience. I took my chance to reduce the surprise of me going up on stage, by saying that I would be more interested in seeing the skill of a close-up magician really close.

The time soon came to stroll along to the theatre. In the slightly faded foyer, between the box office and the entrance to the auditorium, was a booth with a sign over it which read:-

Get Intimate with the Magician
Volunteer to see some of the magic up close and personal

I pointed this out to my companions and told them that I was going to sign up. I moved across the foyer; Helen and Brian followed, Emma hung back. It wasn’t until half way there that I noticed something was not right. I stopped and Helen nearly ran into me. “What’s up?” she asked.

I still wasn’t sure what I was seeing, but Brian said “Haven’t you ever seen a living half woman before?” just like it was something you might see every other day.

I stared and tried to make sense of what I was seeing. What I had assumed, from the entrance, was a booth with a small counter and a modesty panel in front, seen from half the distance had the appearance of an open fronted booth completed occupied by a shelf on which were some papers and the half a woman (from just below her waist up).

I continued forward. “I’ve come to sign up to be a volunteer,” I announced.

The half lady smiled and replied “Thank you. It’s always nice to find someone so positive.” Then I’m sure she winked at me.

Helen said that she’d like to participate too.

The women said, “Thank you, both. Before you commit to possibly coming on stage, please read these.” She handed us each a sheet of paper on which was printed some “Notes to potential participants” which seemed to amount to advice not to volunteer if you are worried about being embarrassed and a statement that no harm would come to the volunteer or their property. I signed up immediately; Helen was hesitant, but signed up too.

Meanwhile, Brian was checking out the booth and the woman. Finally, he said. “This is a great illusion, but where are your legs?”

The half lady didn’t miss a beat, replying “Backstage, sitting in a comfy chair and enjoying a nice foot rub.”

I looked at the booth again and didn’t spot any mirrors or trapdoors. Admittedly the shelf was a bit thick, but it still seemed too thin to conceal a woman’s legs.

As we left toward the auditorium, she said, “My name’s Corinne. Enjoy the show and I’ll be seeing you on stage, probably”

As we entered the auditorium an usher took our tickets and showed us to our seats (three rows back and a little to the centre left of the main block of seats, four or five seats from the aisle). I didn’t take long to get settled in, the seating seemed to be more than half full and a steady stream of people came and added to hum of expectant conversations. The chatter faded as the lights dimmed some ten minutes later and a voice made an announcement about video and photography not being allowed and asking people to turn off mobile phones.

Then the curtain rose revealing a bare stage and a vast video screen on the back wall.

A man in his mid-thirties strolled on stage, wearing a short sleeved white shirt, black bow tie and black trousers. Over his shoulder was draped a sheet of blue fabric. “Good evening, ladies and gentlemen.” When the applause had died down a bit, he continued, “Before we start the show, I would like to introduce some people.” Smoothly he swung the sheet from his shoulder and laid it on the floor, before standing in front of the line of cloth and squatting down. He reached behind and picked up the edge of the sheet and raised it to waist height as he stood. He seemed to realise that he wasn’t going to get it any higher so he dropped it again, revealing a pair of obvious manikin legs dressed in a knee length black skirt. He walked behind the legs with a shrug and reached forward to pick up the cloth and rapidly raised it and then whipped it sideways and there standing in front of him was Corinne, who kicked up a leg to prove that she was whole. “This is Corinne, my wife and lead assistant.”

Corinne detached herself from his arm around her waist and only to return with a frame on wheels, which was filled by a thin curtain, and one of the million candle power torches. She tossed the torch to him and turned the frame about so everyone could tell there was nobody concealed behind it; she then went round behind the frame and twitched the curtain aside to step through. He had switched on the torch and circled behind the frame playing the beam of the torch over the back of the curtain making a varying circle of light that showed there was nothing concealed within the thin fabric. He switched the torch off and immediately the curtain was yanked from its hanging place and standing in the frame was a younger version of Corinne. “This is my daughter and second assistant, Loren.”

Loren jumped down from the frame, curtseyed and dragged it off the stage. They soon came back with a glass box on wheels. In the mean time, the magician had retrieved the cloth he’d used to produce Corinne and arranged in the front centre of the stage. When the box had been moved to its position and rotated a full 360, so we could see all four sides were clear glass, Corinne and Loren moved into position at the ends of the cloth. The magician bent down and locked the front wheels of the box and then lifted the back edge so we could see that the base and lid of the box were also glass. Corinne and Loren wafted the cloth into the air and guided it so that it settled over the box. A couple of seconds later he whipped the cloth aside to show the box now contained a smiling young black woman about Loren’s age (early twenties). “This is Jasmine, my daughter’s friend and my final assistant.”

All three assistants left the stage, and two men in jeans and black t-shirts crossed the stage. “These gentlemen are James and Ben; they do the heavy work moving stuff.” The men move the box that had produced Jasmine into the wings.

“And lastly, I’d like to introduce two people who are not part of my team. Over there,” He pointed to the right hand edge of the stage, “is Yvette, she has the unenviable task of signing for those of you who have problems hearing. She assures me that she will accurately convey my words. And this,” he beckoned to the left edge of the stage, where a man with a video camera balanced on his shoulder emerged, “is Derek; he is your cameraman. He was hired by the theatre to provide the close up view of the magic I shall be performing. You’ll be able to see everything his camera sees on the big screen on the wall and the slightly smaller screen above Yvette.” At this point images appeared on both screens showing the magician, who looked over his shoulder and then waved to the camera.

“The only other person left needing introduction is myself. I am your magician for this evening of magical wonders. My name is David.” After a brief pause for applause, “So let’s do some magic!”

Ben and James brought on a table, similar to the card tables you might find in any village hall, and three chairs. “I am looking for two members of the audience to come and watch this first hand.” Instantly, a forest of hands shot up. “Such enthusiasm! Fortunately, I don’t have to choose.” Corinne brought out a small table and a box. “The box contains the names of those who put their names down to be on stage experiencing the magic directly.” Corinne placed the table on the right hand corner of the stage and having given the box a shake, put it on the table. “Ok, Yvette, would you do the honours and pick two slips from the box?” Yvette looked taken aback, but moved to select two slips from the box. Once she had two pieces of paper in hand, David asked her to read out the names, which he repeated and asked those people to join him on stage.

The man and woman who went up were treated to a virtuoso display of sleight of hand; with coins appearing and disappearing from beneath playing cards in a bewildering array of combinations, until he stacked the 8 coins between the cards and then in quick succession flicked them out; leaving not a stack of coins, but a small golden statue of a naked woman.

The next section of the show involved Corinne, now dressed in a scarlet evening gown. Initially, she was laid on a board resting between two chairs, wrapped in a cloth that was draped over the board, before the chair supporting her feet and the board were removed. Once a hoop had been passed along her length and down the chair, the process was reversed and Corinne sat on the board.

“That version of levitation, which you have just seen is well known to magicians. And, of course, it is quite obvious what was holding Corinne up; the chair. So now we are going to do another levitation which I am hoping you have not seen before. So Yvette would you please select two men from our box of names.”

After some rummaging the names of two men were found and the owners of those names invited to the stage. Some chat followed and Corinne once more reclined on the board, which the cloth had been removed from. The first man was asked to lift her feet a little and hold them there. Once he had assured the magician he was comfortable and had a secure hold on Corinne’s ankles, David removed the chair and the board as he had before. He then asked the second man take a firm grip of Corinne’s shoulders, which a short while later were no longer supported by the other chair, as that too had been removed. The second man was then asked to change his grip from holding Corinne to supporting her; this was achieved with some difficulty and David knelt with hands below her shoulder blades, but not touching “in case he lost his hold”. The first was then asked to achieve the same result, but the magician did not offer the back up support (I guess if she had felt herself slip from his grasp she could put her feet down). “Now Gentlemen, on the count of three, gently lower your hands.”

“One! Two! Three!”

The two men supporting Corinne began to lower their hands, but unexpectedly (?) Corinne stayed in place. “Good! Now step back, please.” Each man took two steps backwards, before stopping and gaping at the magician’s assistant suspended in mid-air between them. Loren and Jasmine each brought on a metal hoop and hand them to the men. David encouraged the men to examine the hoops, before inviting each in turn to pass the hoop along the length of the floating lady. All the while, the cameraman was circling the group on stage; giving us a good view of the levitation. The magician made some hand gestures over Corinne and with a slight waver she rose from waist height to chest height. The men once again followed instructions and passed their hoops along her body. His two younger assistants collected the hoops and retreated to the wings, while the men were asked to return to the audience. The cameraman obviously knew what was to happen next, as he positioned himself behind the magician, watching over his shoulder.

“Many people will still be suspicious, so a further demonstration is in order.” With this announcement he moved Corinne’s arm so it was resting on her chest, then unzipped the dress from under her arm to her hip. With some manoeuvring the dress was soon drawn down her floating figure and handed to Loren. Corinne remained steadfastly in her mid-air position, but now wearing only scarlet underwear. More hand gesturing later, she had floated up to head height and Derek was making it obvious to us in the audience, by way of the video screens, that she was not held up by anything from underneath; in fact, he panned the entire length of her, show her from her shoes, her legs (bare from ankle to top of thigh), her French knickers, her bare back (only interrupted by her bra strap) and the flow of her mid-length hair (which the magician waved his fingers through, as a demonstration that nothing was hidden there).

Gradually, Corinne changed position, again accompanied by the magician’s hand gestures; she pivoted from horizontal to vertical over the space of about fifteen to twenty seconds. She hung there facing to our right, about two feet from the stage floor. She took four steps forwards, as if she was walking down a set of steps that weren’t there, before turning to face us, bowing and continuing into the wings.

The magician stepped forward and the curtains descended behind him. Soon, with Yvette’s help, he had two more audience members. This magic seemed to involve a long rope, each end being held by a spectator, being cut and knotted on one end, near one of the helpers, then the knot being moved to the other end and unknotted, showing the division in the rope had moved to the other end. Many other variations occurred as knots and loops appeared and disappeared in complicated ways, none of which made sense to me. In the end, he seemed to have the rope divided roughly in the middle and tied what looked like a simple knot of one of the loose ends about the other about an inch from that one’s loose end. He told his helpers that they could keep their end of the rope as a souvenir; they pulled and the rope was once again in one piece, so they returned to their seats empty handed.

The curtains re-opened. The magician requested another name from the sign language interpreter and she called out my name. I must have looked stunned, because Helen said, “Well you did sign up.” The truth was, I was stunned; I had expected to be called up much later in the show.

I stood and started to make my way to the aisle. “Would you mind bringing the couple next to you, with you; I’ll be needed a few extra pairs of hands.” I put my hand out to Helen who was already starting to rise and she had a grip on Brian’s wrist, in case he was unwilling (which we both knew was not the case). After the three of us were on stage, David said,”Hello, Gemma. Would you please introduce your friends?”

I paused for a moment wondering how he knew my name, then realise he’d called me up to the stage, by name. “These are friends of mine, Helen and Brian.”

“Hello, Brian. Hello, Helen.” He said, shaking each by the hand in turn. “And how do know Gemma?”

“We’re all in one of the local theatre groups. Gemma had a bit of a win on the lottery and bought the four of us tickets to come to the show.”

“Four of you?”

Helen responded,”Yes; Emma’s still in the audience.”

“And you don’t mind joining our volunteer to help out?” queried the magician.

“No, not at all! In fact I signed up too to watch some of the magic up close and Brian here has always been fascinated by magic and illusion.”

“Good! I hope you won’t be disappointed, but my next piece will centre on Gemma; but I will be asking you to check things out. And I’ll have a special job for Brian later.” He turned to me. “So, Gemma, how are you feeling?”

“I’m a bit nervous to tell the truth.” I admitted, “Especially as I don’t know what’s going to happen.”

“You be glad to hear, I’m not going to be sawing you in half or anything as barbaric as that.”

I was about to express my relief, when Ben and James wheeled on a couple things onto the stage, one of them handed a hammer to David, who immediately handed it to Brian. “Would you please have a thorough look at the box that has been brought on? Brian, you have been given a hammer so that you can tap things, but please don’t dent anything.”

The four of us (Me, Brian, Helen and Derek) went to the box to do the inspection. As David described it was “A box frame of welded square section steel bars, a little under two feet by two feet by three feet, mounted on heavy duty casters. The base and the two ends are quarter inch thick steel plates welded to the frame” Each of the welded sides had holes in. The side away from Yvette had a single central hole about half an inch in diameter. The opposite end had a matching hole and another pair of holes arranged above and either side of centre. These extra holes were not quite three inches across and had some padding inside. The base only had a pair of slightly larger padded holes near the end with the extra holes. The only other feature was some metal channels along the edges of the open sides.

Once everyone had had a good look at the box, the magician asked me to fetch the rope that was on the other trolley that had been brought on stage when the box had. I picked up the rope and had a quick look at the other stuff on the trolley. There was a metal plate and two glass plates and a couple of small boxes that I didn’t have time to look into. The rope was about 20 feet long and perhaps a centimetre in diameter and seemed quite soft and flexible, with a whipping of red thread at each end to stop the ends from fraying.

I was about to hand the coil of rope to the magician, when he said, “I don’t want to touch the rope. As you’ve seen odd things happen when I touch ropes. I want you and Helen to thread that rope through the central holes in the ends of the box. While they are doing that, Brian, would you follow me?” While Helen and I threaded the rope, Brian was lead over to the trolley and asked to inspect the two glass plates and the steel one. As we finished threaded the rope through the box David gave Brian some leather gloves and put some on himself. “Ok, Brian, would you help me take this first glass sheet to the box; we are going to slide this sheet of triple-laminated bullet-proof security glass to form the back wall of the box.” Brian and David slotted the glass into place and went back for the other glass plate, which was slotted into the channels on the front of the box.

“Brian, can you confirm to our friends in the audience that the only way to remove the glass plates is to lift them up out of the channels and that they are quite heavy?”

Brian confirmed this assertion.

“Now for some really heavy lifting,” David, the magician, said. While he guided Brian back to the trolley, Ben and James came on stage. Between the four of them they lifted the steel plate from the trolley to the top of the box. It took them a short while to locate the plate over pins sticking up from each corner of the box. This plate had a five inch hole in it.

“Gemma, would you like to try and lift the top of the box; and, Helen, could you bring the padlocks and keys from the box on the trolley?”

I took hold of the edge and put some effort into move the heavy steel plate; I did not budge it at all. Soon Helen dumped four padlocks on top of the plate. David invited us all to pick a padlock and use the keys to open them and lock them through the hole in the top of one of the locating pins for the box’s lid. We each took one and performed the requested; David did the final one.

“Now we are going to do something I don’t generally recommend.” He walked over the box on the trolley and took out and put on a pair of disposable latex gloves, before returning with a small item in his hand. “We are going to prevent the padlocks from opening by gluing the wrong keys in with this cyanoacrylate adhesive, commonly known as ‘Super Glue’. So first pass your key to your left and try the one you get from your right in the lock.” Once the keys were passed and the locks tried, none had opened. “In turn, I am going to put two drops of glue into each lock; I want you to quickly insert the key you now have, wait five seconds, then try to remove the key.”

I watched him put two drips into Helen’s lock on the big screen at the back of the stage. She immediately shoved the key in and a few seconds later wriggle the key but it was not moving. The process happened three more times; Helen did the insertion for David’s lock.

“Let me ask you three a question. Could anyone get into or out of that box?”

We said that we could see no way into or out of the box; the main part was solidly welded, the glass sides were going nowhere, because of the overhang of the lid and the lid was too heavy to move, even if it had not been secured with four glued shut padlocks.

“I thought you’d say that, then let us continue. Gemma, please come and stand here,” he said indicating a point about two feet from the end of the box that had three holes. Once I was in position, “Helen, would you please come and tie the end of this rope round your friend’s waist? Not too tight, but tight enough that it won’t come off!”

While Helen went about the task David had set her, Corinne brought on a low stool which she placed next to the box; between me and it. Also Ben and James wheeled on a frame with a curtain ruched up at the top. As Helen continued securing the rope round me, they positioned the frame round the box and us, they then unhooked a rope that lowered the curtain until it formed a rectangle of lowered curtain on the floor around us.

“Have you tied the rope around Gemma’s waist, Helen?” Helen nodded. “Good!” he continued, “Gemma, please sit on the stool. Helen, please go to the trolley and get the final four items from the box. Bring the belt to Brian and take the rest to Gemma.” Helen did as she was asked.

“Right, Brian, Put your belt round your waist and stand here facing that way,” he said, indicating a position at the other end of the box.

As Brian attached the belt and moved the specified position, I saw what Helen had brought to me; a blindfold, like a sleep mask, and two pairs of handcuffs, one having bigger shackles and a longer chain.

“Helen, first put the larger cuffs around Gemma’s ankles!” instructed David. “If you can get the chain behind the leg of the stool, so much the better.” Helen deposited the handcuffs and the blindfold on the box and then snapped one end of the ankle cuffs to my right ankle, before winding the chain once round the leg of the stool, followed by dragging my left ankle close enough to snap the other cuff round it.

“Brian, now that I’ve tied this line to the belt, would you take two steps forward.” I looked round and saw that a thin rope that led to the top of the frame had been tied to a loop on the back of the belt.

As Brian took two steps the line attached to the belt pulled the curtain up to my seated shoulder height.

“While I’m finishing preparing Brian, Helen, I need you to put the handcuffs on Gemma, so she can’t interfere with things. Gemma, please raise your hands so the audience can see you are really being restrained.”

I held my hands above my head, while Helen clamped the cuffs round my wrists with what seemed to me to be a slight excess of enthusiasm. I held them in view of the audience and Derek’s camera (peeking over the curtain taking in my restraints at wrist and ankle).

“Brian, take two steps backwards, please.” As the magician guided Brian back to his original position the curtain lowered and I lowered my hands to my lap. “Now, Helen, place the blindfold on your friend; I wish to keep some of my secrets. Then step outside the curtain.”

Helen eagerly complied; although she noticed my tension and commented, “You’ll be OK, magicians never harm volunteers, or they would never get any more,” before leaving me shackled and tied up sitting in the dark without a clue what would happen next. I was nervous, more from fear of the unknown than fear of anything I could think of.

“Are you OK, Gemma?” asked David.

I raised my hands above my head with a ‘thumbs up’ sign and then replaced them in my lap; I did not trust my voice not to betray how nervous I was.

“Gemma’s fine. So, Brian, on the count of three, I want you to take four brisk steps forward and stop. Derek, are you ready?”

I heard Derek reply with a short “yes”.

“Brian, One… Two… Three… Go!”

I heard Brian take his first two steps and the rustle as the curtain surrounding me and the steel box rose. I missed his next two steps, partly because they were muffled by the curtain and mainly because my attention was taken by a sudden jerk of the rope around my waist. I heard the stool I was sitting on topple and a rattle of the chains between my ankles. The next sound I heard was the curtains that had been raised around me collapsing back to the floor. Finally, after a second or twos pause, I heard the auditorium erupt into applause.

I did not know what had happened, but guessing I was to main object of the clapping and cheering, I tried to make a move to acknowledge the adulation; only I could not. I could not move anything; my arms, legs, neck or body; all seemed clamped in place. Discovering myself to be in an unknown, but not painful predicament, I shouted, “Hey! What’s going on?”

I made a move to raise my hands to take off the blindfold, but found they were no longer in my lap, but trapped straight out in front of me and still handcuffed too. In the few seconds it took Helen to step forward and remove the blindfold, I checked out my situation. I was still sitting, but not on the stool, but on cold metal. My shins were held firmly just above where the ankle-cuffs still were. My neck was also firmly held.

Once the mask had been removed, my first sight was a small area of metal with a thick pin sticking up from the corners ahead of me; each with a padlock and key.

I reached the right conclusion at the same time Helen asked, “How did you get into that box?”

Derek’s camera relayed my perplexed expression and my words, “How did I end up in this box? I don’t know.”

I tried to wriggle to get a bit more comfortable and felt the cold glass walls of the box brush my upper arms. “Hey! What’s happened to my clothes?”

Derek draw back and I caught a glimpse of myself in the box in just bra, panties and stockings. The scene shifted to where I had started; the toppled stool lay on my blouse and skirt, which were neatly folded.

Before I could formulate a question that I dared ask, David said, “The bar-staff inform me that drinks are ready for those that ordered them, so we shall have a short intermission. If you would like see Gemma’s predicament, you are welcome to come up and have a brief chat.”

Corinne walked on stage re-dressed in her red gown and carrying a tray of drinks, which she place on the box in front of me. “I took the liberty of bringing your drinks as I knew you couldn’t go and get them,” she said. “Oh, and a straw.”

So here I sit in a box I should not have been able to get into, wearing just my underwear, sipping vodka and tonic through a straw and talking to strangers about it.

I wonder what with happen after the interval? I hope they get me out of the box.

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