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She seems to study her predicament rather thoughtfully, realizing that she will probably not slip her bonds especially with her elbows ...

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CAUGHT BY THE INQUISITION - II :iconrunthegamut:RunTheGamut 4 3
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CAUGHT BY THE INQUISITION or TIME TRAVEL MISHAPS :iconrunthegamut:RunTheGamut 4 3
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The Favor :iconrunthegamut:RunTheGamut 2 9
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CONTINUE...? 10, 9, 8... :iconrunthegamut:RunTheGamut 1 9
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Under The Sycamore - II :iconrunthegamut:RunTheGamut 2 7
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A Nightmare I Had About Being Thrown Overboard... :iconrunthegamut:RunTheGamut 1 13
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It is a long ride to where ever they are taking me. The ride goes on past sunset, and well into dark. Occasionally I hear a guard snore, but I do nothing except shift my posture ever so slightly to counteract the numbness of my pinioned wrists tied behind my back. The urge to sleep is overwhelming, and I finally succumb to it, falling forward in my seat. A mailed arm grabs me before my head hits the floor of the cart. Then I hear, "Fine. You can sleep. We've a ways yet." I'm pushed to the floor onto my side.
"If you kick me, you'll wish you didn't," as my ankles are bound in a lariat and secured. I hear a whisper in my ear. "Way I see it, you won't cause trouble asleep. You best take advantage of it before you're tortured."
A shiver runs up my spine. I just want to lie awake for now and think...how the hell am I going to get out of this? What lies in wait for me...? Where is that blasted witch...? These questions repeat in my head until I succumb to weariness.

I'm awakened by the blast of a horn and the cart lurches to a stop. I am jerked upright and my ankle binds are cut loose and I am pulled by my feet to the edge of the cart where I am carried to the ground again like dead weight. The hood is pulled off my head and I am temporarily blinded by the sunrise. Just when I am adjusting to the light, a robed figure looms into my view.
"This is the one we found, Inquisitor."
In front of me stands a bald man in a gilded frock. His face is grim and his gaze stern. He steps to me and takes my chin in to his clammy hand. I try to jerk away from his clammy touch, but he instead starts to finger the collar and pocket stitching of my denim jacket. "What kind of material is this jerkin made from? It looks as durable as leather."
I say nothing, not willing to go into enter a discussion of how the proliferation of mass production in my era has phased out the weavers' loom. "Find out how we can replicate this design. Cut it off her." Immediate a guard starts unbuttoning my jacket from the top down, while another starts cutting my sleeves off my arms.
Immediately, I panic and start blurting out the excuse I was working on during the cart ride. "Your honor, sir! I am "No, I'm a witchfinder! I have no powers...no magic...nothing at all! I am no witch! I even have evidence that proves I am not!"
The Inquisitor sneers upon hearing this. "You could tell me your evidences...but tied on the rack. I feel you're an adept deceiver." He turned to his retinue. "Guards, take her to the torture chamber! We shall see if you tell the truth; streched, and your bare feet tickled by torchflame..."

They cut strips of cloth from my jacket, the polo I'm wearing, and my jeans as they cuff my wrists and ankles to the manacles attached to a wooden rack. I quiver in fear...I've only heard stories, and none of them good as I remember how evidence was extracted with great efficiency from this device through great and often crippling pain.  
Then the beatings start. They stove my ribs, punch me in the stomach, and burn the parts of my bare skin they expose as they rip my garments to shreds. The inquisitor and his guard meet my gaze as I look up from them, imploring them to not do this thing, but they quickly turn their faces away as they go to prepare the other devices they plan to use on me. I lose any and all self-control as I start to cry in front of the lone sentry left to guard me. He looks around, then approaches me and leans in close to my ear.

"Trust me," he whispers hoarsely. "I am a friend and a member of the resistance fighting this Inquisition."
"Can...can you get me out of here?" I ask between sobs.
The guard looks around for any of the other guards returning. "I could help you, but not now. I am sorry. It will have to be at your hanging, where many of my friends are gathering to save you."
I gasp in horror. "At my hanging?"
"I'm sorry, but your security detail is thick. You've of particular interest to the crown, and they've doubled their usual guard for a person of particular interest. But plans are in motion, but they must commence to a timetable." The guard then hangs his head. "But not now. I am sorry, but you will have to be patient, and bear the coming torture."
I realize that what is to come will be potentially painful. Maybe even fatal. I might not survive in this hellhole to live to make my hanging.
"Is there anything you can at least give me for the pain?" I whisper.
I am terrified. I feel the damp in the parts of my clothes now torn and rent. My joints ache from the beating. Sure, the guards have worked me over a little, but nothing I haven't endured before. Yet, I'm terrified. I examine my bindings. I might have a lockpick on me, but with my wrists in fetters cuffed above my head, I don't know if I can reach.

Oh, this is not good at all.

The guard thinks for the moment I am considering all the options I have in my disposal, which are little to no chance of happening then produces a little vial no bigger than a Visene bottle. He opens the stopper and gives me a little to drink. My lips go numb as soon as the liquid hits my tongue, then a warm numbness floods my body, relaxing my aching and restrained limbs.
"This is morphin. The pain will be limited, but it will not be entirely gone. I will do my best to attend to your injuries and preserve what I can. But please understand that I must attend to your torture and even participate so that my deception will remain undetected. I am also presiding your hanging."

Footsteps ring louder the closer they approach. "I must now look as if I am breaking you on the rack, and I must also burn your soles with the torch. Don't hope for escape yet. You must survive the morning. Trust me!" The bolts of the heavy iron door of the torture chamber give, and the door opens with an ominous squeak. The Inquisitor has returned, carrying an iron platter with clips of metal. His guard carries a hot iron.  The fucking bastard smiles as he walks in to see me, an sick shit-eating grin punctuated with spotted teeth and all the evidence bearing the scars of fifteenth century dentifrice.

"There's nothing I like more than to see a beautiful woman in distress, because she is about to tell me everything she knows!"

The morphine was taking effect. I would have lost my shit right then and there, but the only thing I could manage then was a single solitary tear.
CAUGHT BY THE INQUISITION - II
A time-travelling bounty hunter is imprisoned in an Inquisitor's dungeon, to be tortured on the rack and hanged for witchcraft. Part II of a story co-written with the awesome princeps76.
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In my occupation...you just never know where you're going to end up.

In my case, I never knew I was going to find myself in a horse-drawn cart with a sack over my head that smells like onions and my hands tightly bound behind me with hemp rope to be tried by the Inquisition in the fifteenth century. At least not this Yankee.

It all started when I was pursuing a renegade witch with a bounty on her head. My pursuit started in early 21st century France. I tailed her to a nightclub, but apparently I blew my cover. I chased her out to a back alley, where after a brief duel she opened a dimensional rift that pulled us both through it. I emerged with her nowhere in sight, but in a clearing encircled by mail-clad soldiers escorting a clergyman and all clad in Medieval garb.

Upon the sight and my emerging I quickly found myself staring down the barrels of several flintlock muskets and the points of cutlasses ready to kill me.  Quickly, I tried to explain in my poor French that I was a witchfinder, sent to hunt down a murderous mad witch who was too dangerous to let live.
The soldiers quickly laughed and guffawed.

"I agree with you. Witches are too dangerous to live. They deserve their fates...a good old hanging!  Their bare feet dancing in the air!  'Tis justice for their heresy, no?!?"
The rest of the soldiers cheered at this, and I tried to pretend to go along with this until the clergyman came behind me and pulled at the back of my left ear. "But...what do I see...? A tattoo?"
I knew he was talking about my birthmark because I don't have any tattoos.

"No, your eminence...it is a mark I was born with."
The clergyman recoiled in horror and spat! "No! 'Tis a mark of the Devil!"  He pointed a bony hand from the folds of his clerical robes accusingly at me.  "This strangely-clad whore is an agent of Satan!!!"

I realized right then and there that I was in a lot of fucking trouble. Time-travelling paranormal investigator and researcher dressed some college co-ed in 15th-Century France? This might not end well, I thought as the soldiers closed ranks.

"No, your eminence! You are mistaken," I shouted as I put up my hands in surrender. "I even have proof! I am sworn to uphold good!"
The clergyman approached me as mailed hands seized my arm. He studied me a moment, then slapped me across the face hard. "You show too much zealousness in your words. Too much haughty tone, too. You are a witch, I am sure of this or I am a fool." He turned to his captain. "Bind her, and take steps to make sure she won't bewitch you or your company. She is to be interrogated immediately."

The mailed hands grab me and a dark sack is thrown over my head. My backpack is taken from me, and strong arms force my wrists behind my back. I resist, but a guard immediately admonishes me. "Listen up, lass! If you don't want to get hurt: Don't struggle!" I relent, and quickly my wrists are tightly bound behind me. Someone grabs my arm and I am made to walk to a troop transport, where I am lifted from below my arms like a sack of potatoes and hauled into a cart where I am forced to sit on a hard wooden bench. I hear soldiers board the cart, and two sit on either side of me. I hear some scuttling before the cart is secured and the cart rolls forward, beginning a long, bumpy ride to where I imagine is nothing nice.

No one speaks too much in the cart. Occasionally, I hear a sneeze or a cough, or a clatter of a scabbard tapping against a soldier's mail.  I feel eyes on me, and its uncomfortable. I feel every bump and stone the cart runs over. My bound limbs ache. I move my fingers as best as I can to keep the circulation going, careful to try to limit my movement so as not to arouse suspicion.
I begin to think whether escape is a good option. On the other hand, this witch I'm contracted to seal might already be where I may be going. Perhaps it would be wise to let me infiltrate this castle as a prisoner? I'm fairly confident of my abilities. I could escape my bindings given time and perhaps a little improvisation, maybe even dislocating my thumbs if I have to.
But then I realize that I stick out like a sore thumb, and if I escape now no doubt I'll have difficulty escaping without some kind of assistance from a local.

I ponder this and other options silently behind this forced veil over my head. The hours take their toll, yet I am not allowed to sleep. My limbs ache and my eyes start to well and fill with tears, but I tell myself its not the fear getting on top of me...merely the onions that were in this sack before it went over my head.

                                        TO BE CONTINUED.
CAUGHT BY THE INQUISITION or TIME TRAVEL MISHAPS
This story is a potential collaboration with princeps76.deviantart.c… who co-wrote this story. A time-travelling bounty hunter from present day finds herself imprisoned for being a witch.
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There are no clean getaways sometimes. Sometimes you hide and they still find you. And then they try to kill you in your own home.

I had just unlocked the front door and was about to pop the buttons of my varsity jacket and turn the thermostat down when I feel the pistol in my ribs and the order to freeze and put my hands up. I feel my stomach tighten and clench. Its the whole dead-to-rights routine and steps of compliance to ensure that you're taken alive and not shot in the back: I'm ordered to put my hands behind my head, and to get on my knees. I'm patted down for weapons, then my wrists are ziptied behind me.  I'm dragged to my feet and pulled by the crook of my arm to a simple chair in the corner where my arms are draped and shoved rather crudely and extended as far as the cords stretch through and around the chair's back.

Once seated, my captor gingerly lifts my face by the chin so that our eyes meet. He sneers, then without warning sucker punches me in the solar plexus. I double over coughing with the wind knocked out of me. My bound wrists don't let me fall or drop to the floor, so I hang forward trying to catch my breath, and also to avoid meeting this asshole's gaze.

A couple of men step in and one of them steps behind me. I hear the unstripping of tape from its roll and it is placed over my mouth. They then proceed to close all the windows. I notice one of them go through my laundry in the hamper and grab some dirty shirts of mine. He tosses one shirt to his partner, who starts stuffing the shirt under the window's draft where the cold air gets in, while he steps out of the house a moment.

I hear a car engine start nearby, like its parked next to the house. I hear fumbling followed by the sound of a trunk door slamming. Then he steps back inside over to me. In his hands is a coil of hose that he's dropped and unwound on the floor. He then drops the open end near my feet.

I smell car fumes emanating from the open end of the hose, and I finally start to put things together. My stomach starts to churn, partly from fear and partly from the smell of the exhaust.

Lead man withdraws a Camel from a pack hidden in his breast pocket. He lights one, takes a few drags and then looks at me intently as if he's studying me.

"We were paid to make sure it was painless. This way, at least you fall asleep." He takes another drag and heads out the door, but turns on his heel to face me. "You should not have got greedy. I would consider this as a favor, but to me-dead is dead. The others wanted to take you to the junkyard and set the dogs on you. At least this way...you die unblemished and free of pain...well, relatively. Its not like in the movies..."

And with that, he hit the lock and closed the door and the house started to fill up with carbon monoxide.  And I started to panic.
The Favor
As reprisal for a theft she committed, Erin finds herself set up and left for dead.
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No Alcohol Is To Be Brought On Board This Vessel   by RunTheGamut

I board the boat, and Sam the first-mate stops me. "I smell booze, Erin."
"Come on, Sam," I protest. "I had a shot and a pint."
The quartermaster sees the commotion and stops what she's doing. "You know we got a strict policy regarding alcohol."
"I know, but it's St. Patrick's Day!"
The quartermaster puts her hands on her hips. "Yes, and we have a no-tolerance policy concerning alcohol. You have alcohol on your breath, therefore it is in your system, and therefore you have brought alcohol on this ship."
My face is flushing with nervousness. "Okay, well I can still walk a straight line." I go down the ramp and walk a perfectly straight line from heel to toe.
The quartermaster isn't amused. "No dice, Erin. You got two choices: Either get your stuff out of the bunk and disembark. Or spend some time in the brig."
I think about this for a moment, because I've been on this ship now for around ten days and I know this vessel has no brig. "Where's the brig?"
"Your bunk."
"Oh, so I'll go to my bunk then?" I start up the ramp, but the quartermaster bars my way. She produces a set of handcuffs, and my stomach starts to tighten.
"You're confined to your bunk, and when someone gets confined to bunk we have to cuff them for their safety and that of the crew."
Now, I'm no stranger to restraints having been studying escapology since a teenager. Though I have never been arrested, I've been handcuffed hundreds of times. I never related this fact to anyone on board, because you just never know what someone will think in a professional environment.
I don't want to get fired, and somehow I think this is some kind of joke they're playing on me but I play along. "Okay, do what you got to do."
I bare my wrists together towards Sam and the quartermaster. "No, Erin. Turn around." I turn around and put my hands behind my back palms out. The quartermaster cuffs my left wrist and just when she attaches my right I hear Sam's phone clicking a picture. "I'll send you a copy."
I'm led below deck to my bunk and Sam tells me he'll check on me in a few before closing the screen. He can't stifle his laughter and laughs as I hear him go back above deck.
The steel makes me cold. I shiver a little bit, thankful that I slipped on my Patagonia before I was cuffed but wishing that maybe I was cuffed above the sleeve. I test my bonds. They seem to be police issue, but I'm happy they're not hinged and even happier they're not double-locked: I can probably shim myself free. I carefully get up and open my backpack to get my keyring which has a shimkey my partner gave me before I embarked on this trip. I sit back on the bunk and slowly slip the cuffs around my ass and under my legs to my knees. I roll onto my back and curl my knees back to my face, thankful for the gymnastics I took as a kid. I slip my manacled wrists past my heels and get my hands in front of me. I grab my keys and within a minute I slip the shim into the groove of my left cuff and work it until I feel the tension of the bow start to give and the cuff loosen. I hide the keyring back into my backpack and wait.
Sam comes back to see me sitting there, one hand under my chin and another hand dangling the cuffs from my finger.
"...what the fuck?!? How did you?"
"You didn't double-lock."

Sam takes the cuffs from me. "How did you...?"
I grin sheepishly. "I think they were a little loose."
Sam looks at me stunned. "Let me try...?"
I consider this a moment. "I'm being hazed, am I?"
Sam chortles a bit, and he admits the ruse. "Yeah, pretty much. We always fuck with the interns. Also reminds them that we do have disciplinary measures when at sea."
I relent and he demonstrates cuffing procedure on me, handcuffing me a tad more securely than before and double-locking them. I sit on my bunk and try to work my wrists free like an amateur, trying to pull them apart as if struggling would actually do any good. Sam goes on to explain that a severely disruptive passenger or crewperson will be handcuffed and confined in a bunk or someplace under supervision of the captain and senior crew. He leaves me alone for a minute to send me the photo he took by email, which is the only means of getting communication right now because my cell phone fell out of my pocket and into the drink days ago.

I ponder possibilities where I might find myself under restraint, and always wonder if my skills might be enough to get me out safely should I find myself in an unsafe situation. You never know what your captor's intentions are. I try to apply myself in various situations to see what my limits are, so that hopefully there ever comes a day danger threatens my life or of someone I love I will be prepared and ready to fight and come out on top.
Fortunately, Sam comes back and uncuffs my wrists instead of raping or murdering me. I won't be led to the mast to hang for piracy or made to walk the plank or tortured or killed. Instead, I get initiated to the crew and keep my internship. And life goes on. Of course, I got to admit that I got a little hot and bothered by the whole ordeal.

My St. Paddy's Day OR PUNISHMENT AT SEA
Hazed by getting handcuffed and confined to my bunk...stupid workplace initiations.
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A drop of water hits my head and I come to. Instinctively, I try to wipe but the rope that holds my bound wrists above my head holds fast.

Shit.

Its the above-the-head ties that are the hardest to escape from. You can't reach your pockets to pull out a blade, a pick, or a hidden cuff key when they're secured above your head. Sure, you might have a chance if you're able to pull them down to get behind whatever you might have hidden in your hair or collar. But if your wrists are tied above your head, chances are you're not getting out unless you can shrink yourself and slip your bonds or unless someone comes to rescue you.

And I hate, HATE getting rescued.

My ankles are tied to a length of pipe, so no acrobatics to get to my escape tool in my boot.

I'm stuck. My stomach starts to turn knot up like my restraints, and I do my best to swallow my fear.

I groan at this turn of events and start to look around. I'm in a circular pit. A steel door is across from where I am tied. It looks like its a pressure sealed door, too. I look around and notice a pair of outflow pipes above me and after some consideration I realize I'm in a well or a cistern that fills up with water...

...oh, shit.

No sooner than I realize where I am than the room roars with the sound of rushing water coming through before vomiting out the pipes and cascading onto the floor. Within moments, there is a couple of inches of water on the floor and rising.

They tied me here to drown.

I start struggling like mad, pulling at the ropes. No dice.

I call out for help. I scream. I start panicking. There's a hairpin in my hair, but I can't reach it. The water is now up to my knees. My jeans are starting to get soaked.

I look up to try to examine the rope around my wrists and I see a haggard young man dressed in a leather vest, looking like an Eighties switchblade punk on a ledge above me. I scream for him to stop the water, along with any promises of not telling anyone of what I've seen. He sneers and turns his back on me. I catch a glimpse of a gear-shaped tattoo on his shoulder before he leaves my line of sight. I think I hear his laughter over the water, too. It is mocking, hollow laughter.

The water is now up to my waist, and my fleece that was keeping me warm is now drenched. I'm shivering, crying, and pleading with whatever power that exists in the world to get out of this deathtrap. The thought of drowning terrifies me. I wonder how many people this gang must have killed in this room like this, dying like I am about to.  I scream. I pull at the rope. I want to put on a brave face, but this is horrific. The water is now at chest level, and the chill is making me want to thrash and squirm faster. Whatever bravado I have mustered has left me. I'm scared to death, taking deep breaths as the water rises to my neck.  Is this...?

                                           GAME OVER
CONTINUE...? 10, 9, 8...
Captured by the Mad Gear Gang, Erin finds herself in a fast-flooding cistern deathtrap with no way to escape.
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RunTheGamut
Erin
United States
A imaginative libertine who loves adventure, brushes with danger, daring escapes and a happy ending.
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:iconmasterlurker:
MasterLurker Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2017  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you so much for the watch :D
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:iconrunthegamut:
RunTheGamut Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2017  New Deviant
Quite welcome, sir! I like your work!
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:iconmasterlurker:
MasterLurker Featured By Owner 6 days ago  Professional Digital Artist
So happy you like my art :D
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:iconmielco92:
Mielco92 Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2017  Hobbyist Artist
Thanks for the Watch! Heart  Hug 
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:iconrunthegamut:
RunTheGamut Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2017  New Deviant
No problem. I like your manipulations! 
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Photobygary Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2017  Professional Photographer
Thanks for watching
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:iconrunthegamut:
RunTheGamut Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2017  New Deviant
My pleasure!
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:iconmagicengr:
magicengr Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you for the watch! Hope you enjoy the stories. I may have to adjust offerings for you!
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:iconrunthegamut:
RunTheGamut Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2017  New Deviant
Same, same, and same here! Hope you enjoy my stories as I enjoy yours!
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:iconmagicengr:
magicengr Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Feel free to provide feedback, always willing to hear what others think!
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