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A SLAVE'S QUEST
Her hand trembled slightly when she put his letter down. Evidently, it was a good thing she had taken the time to sit down before reading the curt note. He was willing to consider taking her back, but there were conditions; terrible conditions, horrendous conditions, unacceptable conditions, all of which were painstakingly spelt out. The details were graphic and left no room for misinterpretation and no loopholes for last minute ‘but I didn't know what I was getting into' retreats. Victor was offering her a one-way ticket for a voyage to the outer limits of her fantasies, then beyond them and yet, despite a dread that made her feel almost physically ill, Elena knew she was going to accept.
She'd spent the last six months in an effort to build a life apart from him; to excise him and all that he had come to represent from her mind. Elena had fled the city and gone to one where no one knew her, leaving her few friends and estranged family behind. By severing all connections to her former life she had hoped for a chance to start anew and break the spell he held over her, but it had all been in vain.
Instead of gradually fading away, with each passing day the allure of his power had only increased, until thoughts of him dominated her waking hours as well as her increasingly fitful sleep. In desperation, she had thrown herself into several affairs, but to no avail. None of her suitors had survived even the first week and so now she had returned; ready to admit her complete and utter defeat. There was no way to deal with her obsession but to give in to it and looking back, Elena realized that her attempt to escape Victor's compelling influence had been ill-conceived from the start, because it had not been his outrageous notions that had driven her away in the first place, but her own reaction towards them. Of course, she had been horrified when she learned to what extent his intentions surpassed her own half-formed fantasies of submission and slavery, but as soon as she had overcome the initial shock, his ideas had taken root in her subconscious. They had found fertile ground, then thrived and prospered there in the hidden depths until the seed he'd planted in her mind brought forth its ample fruit, and now, she had no choice other than to let him harvest what he had so masterfully sown.
Picking up the phone she dialled the number he had specified.
“Yes?” The familiar cadences of his voice sent shivers down her spine and she took a moment to calm her nerves before speaking. It would not do to stammer now.
“I accept.” There, she'd said it. Paradoxically, the act of surrendering her freedom was accompanied by a profound sense of liberation.
“Good! However, I'll need proof that you're serious. You've disappointed me once already and I hate being disappointed. You know what to do. I'll be watching your progress. Do not call me again. I will contact you when the time has come.” He cut the connection and she stared at the phone.
Once more, he had managed to surprise her. Elena had secretly hoped he would be as eager to come and take possession of her as she was to be owned by him, but instead, he expected her to redeem herself first. She did not know, exactly, what he wanted of her, but was determined to prove herself worthy.
Elena parked her car in the otherwise empty visitor's parking lot of the nondescript functional building. It had taken talking to her old scene acquaintances and some detective work to get this address. Fortunately, there were not many metalworking shops that specialised in the pertinent kind of merchandise and to her relief when she'd contacted the proprietor on the phone, it was confirmed that she was on the right track. Her call had been expected and she was assured that all of the necessary arrangements had been made. Courtesy of Victor, she had a private appointment this very Sunday.
With some trepidation, she got out of the car and walked the few steps to the recessed entrance, the clicking of her heels echoing loudly in the eerie silence, adding to her unease. In the blazing afternoon heat, the whole industrial area appeared deserted. She arrived at the door and self-consciously looked up at the security camera before she rang the bell and for a brief moment, hoped that no one would answer and thus she could leave again in full knowledge that she had done her part. The thought died a second later for the entry phone came to life with a crackle
“It's Elena. We talked on the phone.”
“Right. Please come in.”
There was a muted click and she pushed the heavy door open. In the reception area beyond, she was greeted by a stocky man in his 50's wearing a wrinkled plaid shirt, sneakers and jeans and his greying hair stood out in every which way, as if he'd just scrambled out of bed. Nevertheless, he somehow managed to convey an impression of competence and trustworthiness.
“Hello! I'm Alex. Pleased to meet you.”
“Hello Alex.” Elena took the proffered hand which he began to pump enthusiastically. His eyes lit up appreciatively as he looked over her tall form.
“So you're Victor's Elena! Well, he's always had an eye for beauty, but from what he's told me, I'd have thought you were older.”
‘What had Victor said about her? And what other beauties had caught Victor's eye before her?'
An irrational bolt of jealousy cursed through her, but she was Victor's Elena to this man and so he had made his claim on her official already. She basked in that knowledge and her anxiety yielded to something akin of comfort, strengthening her resolve to see this through.
“I'm 27, why?”
“Indeed? I'd have put you at 23, max. Normally, I'm quite good at these things.” He shook his head in awe. “Victor has searched for a soul mate for a very long time now. You know what you're getting into, don't you? You must be very much in love with him to consent to what he wants. The various devices he requires you to be fitted with will stay with you until the end of your days, Elena. He's not pressuring you in any way, is he?”
Not knowing what to say, she merely stared at him in reply and it took all of her will power not to start trembling uncontrollably. The silence stretched while he continued to study her, then he seemed on the verge of saying something more, but apparently decided against it. Just before the situation turned awkward, Alex gestured towards a massive metal door to the right.
“Please come with me.”
The adjoining room was large and filled with bulky equipment. He led the way through the maze of state-of-the-art, CNC lathes and milling machines until they reached an area dominated by a head high, rectangular metal frame arching over a low turntable. A number of movable appendages sprouted from the frame, mostly curved bars that supported small cameras at each end. Alex stopped in front of it and turned towards her.
“Please remove all of your clothing.”
“Excuse me?” Although she'd half-expected such a request, the offhand way it was made left Elena speechless, a feat rarely accomplished.
Alex noted her dumbfounded expression and smiled disarmingly. His sweeping gesture encompassed the contraption and the computer workstation next to it.
“What we have here is a Rotwang T3. It's the latest in 3D scanner and proto-typing technology. The data it provides allows me to create a detailed computer model of your body, anatomically correct down to the last mole. I need your digital replica to construct the devices Victor has specified and so for the scanner to do its work, you'll have to be completely naked.”
“Oh. OK,” Elena relented.
She had never been particularly shy, casually flaunting her lithe body with the self-assuredness of a woman that was well aware of her beauty and relished the attention it attracted. Elena was particularly proud of her flat belly and firm bottom, reckoning that they were more a product of her own athletic efforts than the hereditary gift of high breasts and small waist. In a moment, she'd slipped out of her heels and shed her light summer dress, revealing her underwear, or rather her complete lack thereof. To his credit, Alex did not even blink.
“Thank you. It's fortunate that Victor had you permanently depilated, so there's no need to shave off bothersome body hair first. Please allow me to put some reference points on your skin, as they'll enable the computer to create a detailed and accurate map of your limbs, head and body.” He produced some kind of marker pen and liberally sprinkled her body from head to toe with an irregular pattern of silvery dots, continuing his explanation while he worked. “Don't worry. The reflective ink can easily be washed off. The dots allow the computer to keep track of the spatial coordinates of each body part, even if you move. There, that's it. Now step on the turntable, please.”
Elena stepped up onto the dais beneath the metal arc while he sat down in front of the workstation.
“Spread your arms and legs please, then try to keep as still as possible. The more you move, the longer the measuring process will take.”
He touched some keys and the platform started to turn slowly. At the same time, blades of bright light started to sweep her body, slowly and methodically passing up and down right from her toes to the top of her head. The process continued for some minutes, then, with a loud beep from the computer everything stopped. Alex helped her down and led her to a nearby chair.
“OK, we're nearly done. Just a few more detailed scans.”
She silently watched him pull a mobile cart stacked with whirring electronics and topped by a large touch screen that would have looked right at home in some high tech hospital next to her seat. Attached to it via a narrow, umbilical cord was a hand-held unit, reminding her of a soldering iron capped by a tiny glass sphere. Alex busied himself with the controls and the glass tip began to pulsate with a strong blue light. Elena eyed it dubiously, but only when he knelt beside her and approached her face with the flashing business end of the gadget did she speak up.
“What's that thing for?”
“It's called a scanning wand. I'm going to make some digital impressions of your oral and nasal cavities, so just relax and follow my instructions. Lay your head back, please.
She raised her eyebrows at this, but he chose to ignore her silent inquiry and so with a shrug she gave in to his request. One after the other, he inserted the head of the scanning wand deeply into each of her nostrils and apparently oblivious to her discomfort, he none too gently tilted it to and fro while intently staring at the machine's screen. Subsequently, he proceeded to her mouth and repeated the procedure with enervating thoroughness. She had to open as wide as possible and also move her tongue around to accommodate the inquisitorial intruder. The muscles of her jaw burned dully by the time he finally retracted the wand. The scanning of her ears was a lot less aggravating in comparison, although he pushed the probe as deep into the ear canals as it would go, but he wasn't finished yet.
“One more thing. Now, I want you stand again and spread your legs.”
“Do I really need to?” She started to protest instinctively, but already knowing the answer she was going to receive.
The simple statement denied her any bargaining leverage. Elena hesitated for a moment, then with manifest reluctance acquiesced to his demand. After all, she had come here ready to accept far worse than what had been asked of her so far and besides, she had vowed to herself to never to betray Victor's trust in her again. So when Alex asked, she meekly rose from the chair and spread her nether lips with her manicured fingers, opening herself for his deep probing. The process was a long and intimate one while he surveyed and recorded each square millimetre of her genitals, but she endured the humiliating examination stoically. Elena was heartily glad when he straightened with a sigh and pronounced his measurements complete.
“Looks like I've got all the data I need. Thanks for your patience. It's been appreciated.”
“You're welcome. But why stop halfway? Maybe you'd care to do a colonoscopy as well?” she quipped.
He winced at the heavy sarcasm colouring her voice, but without further ado directed her to a door at the back of the room.
“No. We've done all we can for today. Through that door you'll find the lavatory to the right. It has a shower stall where you can wash the ink off. Here, take your clothes with you,” he added and allowed himself a leering grin. “Regrettably, I've run out of reasons to keep you naked.”
Quite a while later, freshly showered and dressed once again, Elena rejoined Alex in the workshop. Contrary to his claims, the marker ink had valiantly resisted her efforts to wash it off and afterwards, she had felt the need to take a time-out while luxuriating in the shower's warm spray. She found Alex standing beside one of the CNC milling machines, watching it process a fist-sized block of transparent resin. The machine completed its noisy work shortly after her arrival and Alex placed the finished product in an open cardboard box that already contained a couple of similar items.
“Take these templates along when you get your piercings done. They'll ensure that everything will fit perfectly, later on. Victor has made an appointment for your piercings to be done on Friday, with the best piercing expert you'll find anywhere, I might add. Here's the address.”
He flashed a business card at her, then put it into the box and closed the lid before handing it to her. Elena accepted it with well-founded trepidation, for Victor had never made a secret of his fascination with body modifications, especially as a means to exert control and discipline. If she'd ever harboured any doubts about that, his letter had disabused her of them once and for all. Although she'd had her navel pierced a few years back, the prospect of being comprehensively pierced in line with Victor's wishes frightened her deeply. Yet, despite herself, excitement laced her anxiety. To imagine how the very flesh of her body would be held captive and thus be holding her entire person captive was highly erotic and undeniably arousing. Oblivious of her inner turmoil, Alex continued to lay out the course Victor had set for her.
“I'll need about six weeks to manufacture your restraints. The material Victor has specified is hard to come by, and harder still to machine.” He deliberated for a moment before he went on, “I reckon I'll have everything ready around the 21st next month. That should give your piercings plenty of time to heal and so I'd like to schedule the fitting of all your equipment for the following Sunday, the 24th, if that's OK with you?” He paused and looked at her challengingly, daring her to back off, now that her freedom had an expiry date.
‘Less than two months before my slavery becomes irrevocable.' The thought was chilling and thrilling at the same time, but immediately, another worrisome notion entered her mind. ‘Would that translate into almost two more lost months before she could be together with Victor again as well?' Although Elena was still catching up with the implications of Alex' news, she was loath to give him any reason to doubt her commitment.
“Perfect, I'll be here on the 24th.”
Five days later, Elena found herself at the front door of a representative mansion in one of the city's best neighbourhoods. To her surprise, the business card from Alex' box of dubious gifts had turned out not to belong to some shady piercing parlour, but to a high-profile clinic for aesthetic surgery. She was early for her 2 pm appointment, but just could not bear waiting for another minute, let alone a half-an-hour.
The intervening period had been aggravating, to say the least. Barely back home from her body's futuristic measurement for the custom-made restraints, she'd opened what she had immediately come to think of as Pandora's Box. It took her a while to make heads and tails of its contents, but when she finally did, she immediately wished she had not. The accurately-machined blocks of resin each conformed to a part of her body, even though just which part was not always immediately evident.
Comparatively easy to identify were the templates complementing her breasts, despite the strange, T-piece type nozzles which sprang from the outside of each dome shaped item, with one end of the T's crosspiece attached right at the apex and its central stem pointing downward. Somewhat harder to figure out was the one intended for her nose; the twin, oblate, conical tubes sprouting on the inside threw her off at first, until she realized they were destined to go up her nostrils. A saddle-shaped piece with a number of parallel ridges and recesses apparently matched her pubic region, while yet another looked like it might just fit inside her oral cavity, provided that the shallow pocket at its core was intended to receive her stretched-out tongue. However, the most worrisome observation regarding all the templates was something else: if Elena surmised the purpose of the multitude of holes riddling them correctly, she would very soon be adorned with more numerous and more extreme piercings than any she had previously conceived possible.
The box also contained a small plastic envelope containing scores of blunt-tipped pins of various lengths and gauges; all made from the same clear resin and obviously intended to be passed through the holes. Experimentally, Elena had pushed one into a hole and upon the realization that wherever the pin crossed an open space, it would later transfix her flesh, had shivered with dread. Some of the acrylic studs came with removable, flat ended caps to prevent them from sliding out, while others were threaded at one end for the same reason. A few featured cross-bores (several even more than one, some also threaded), so they could intersect each other within her body!
Elena had stared at each part for a long time, oscillating between terror and arousal while she imagined the sensations of cold steel driven through her flesh. In the end the arousal had won, with her deft fingers diving between her thighs and driving herself to a monumental orgasm that granted her some much needed sexual relief. Afterwards, she meticulously put the templates back into the box and stored it under her bed, where it had rested with evil portent until today.
The weather had remained favourable, so she wore the same light summer dress as before, presently drenched in cold sweat and clinging to her lithe figure. The fateful box felt heavier and heavier with each passing moment. She left her car in the parking area reserved for visitors of the clinic, next to a brand new luxury limousine more representative for its usual clientèle than her own modest vehicle. Since on Fridays the clinic was closed to the public and received visitors by ‘special appointment' only, Elena had not been surprised to find the car park otherwise empty.
Straightening her back with a tremulous sigh, Elena rang the bell. Its polyphonic chimes were still reverberating when she heard rapid steps approaching through the hallway, then a second later the door opened and she found herself face to face with a young woman in a white lab coat. Her stunningly beautiful face was marred by a frown of annoyance.
“Yes?” She inquired with an arched brow. An embroidered label on her left breast pocket identified her as Lisa.
“Hello, I'm Elena and I have an appointment with Dr Lowry. I'm a little early, I'm afraid,” she added with a nervous smile.
“Oh, it's you!” Briefly both eyebrows went up before the woman schooled her features into professional politeness. “Please, come with me.”
Elena followed her through the hallway and into a richly-appointed waiting room.
“Please have a seat while I inform the doctor that you've arrived, but first, let me relieve you of that,” she beamed and took the box from Elena's hands.
“Yes of course. Thank you.”
While the physician's assistant was away, Elena studied the room and thought that the interior design was a bit too ostentatious for her taste, an impression reinforced by the coffee table magazines laying around. These were all geared towards “discerning individuals of demanding taste” and their high-gloss pages dispensed essential advice on topics such as the breeding of race-horses or what yacht might be fashionable at the French Riviera this season. It made for fascinating reading and helped her to forget about the reason for her presence in the anteroom.
Her foray into the world of the ultra affluent was cut short by the return of Lisa, this time in the company of an attractive-middle aged woman and they stopped briefly in the open doorway of the waiting room. The older woman's haughty face was still youthful with only the slight crinkles around her mouth and eyes betraying her real age. They added character to her austere beauty, although Elena was not sure that the conveyed impression worked in the woman's favour. Even disregarding the cold glance she was spared, Elena had the notion that crossing this lady was not the smartest thing one could do, yet somehow, she already seemed to have attracted the other female's disapproval.
“So this is the reason my consultation was cut short,” she remarked just loud enough for Elena to overhear. Unfortunately, Elena could not understand the assistant's reply, which to all appearances went a long way towards appeasing the other woman whose attitude changed visibly while she listened to the whispered words. Her hostile air was replaced by one of speculative interest and a predatory smile played around her mouth when she bestowed another, less intimidating, if rather more condescending look on Elena, before both proceeded to the front door, continuing their quiet conversation. A moment later, Lisa returned alone.
“The doctor will see you now,” she announced from the doorway, where she waited for Elena, before leading the way up a flight of stairs to the second floor. Elena fell in step beside her.
“What was that all about?” she inquired, making no effort to hide her irritation about the mysterious encounter.
“Oh, sorry about that. She's a prospective client, obscenely rich, but also very high maintenance, if you get my meaning,” Lisa explained in a conspiratorial tone, then made a face. “I suppose Greg, um, that is Dr Lowry, was quite happy your early arrival gave him an excuse to cut that appointment short.”
“Well, she seemed not too happy about it. How did you mollify her?”
“Um, I told her you were here to see Greg about your inverted nipples. I hope you don't mind, do you?” Lisa gave her a sidelong glance, smiling a little worriedly.
Elena shook her head slightly and returned the smile, although inwardly, she had her doubts about that explanation. It sounded plausible enough, but she felt certain it was completely bogus nevertheless, and wondered briefly how many people were privy to the ‘secret' preparations that Victor had instituted for her permanent enslavement. It vexed her that almost everybody she met seemed more knowledgeable about them than herself, but this train of thought was interrupted by their arrival at a closed door. Lisa knocked perfunctorily and entered without waiting for a reply. Elena took a deep breath before she followed her. Inside, a tall, fit looking man greeted her with a casual nod from behind his gleaming white desk.
“Hello Elena, I'm Dr Gregory Lowry. Please have a seat.” He motioned her to an empty chair in front of the desk and Elena sat while Lisa remained standing behind her. The surgeon silently studied her through his rimless glasses until Elena wanted to squirm under his sharp gaze.
“You represent a fine specimen of your gender, Elena,” he stated finally. “You're young, in excellent health, reasonably well educated as I'm told and rather beautiful. You can take my word on that. I'm a certified expert. If you applied yourself, you could have a bright future in almost any career you pick. Or, if you chose so, a favourable marriage would be virtually guaranteed by your looks. In short, by the standards of our superficial times, you've been extraordinarily blessed. Yet, you intend to give up all of that and become Victor's slave. Let me warn you though ... once you've taken this step, there'll be no turning back.”
“I'm aware of that,” she assured him.
“The modifications Victor has specified are quite extensive, and very few of them can be reversed, even by surgical means. Hiding them won't be an option permitted to you, either. That being said, trying to blend in with the petty bourgeois will be awkward, to say the very least. Victor's notion of irrevocable commitment may be very romantic, but assuredly is rather impractical with respect to everyday life. You're aware of that, too?”
“By now at the latest, I guess.”
“Splendid! In addition, as with all medical procedures, a small, but non-negligible quantum of risk is involved. Therefore, from a purely medical point of view, I must strongly advise you against having them done. Of course, from that narrow-minded point of view, nearly everything we do here is inadvisable.” An ironic smile played about his lips. “However, although we'll strive to make the actual operations as painless as possible, the healing period and aftercare will, by necessity, entail quite a bit of discomfort.”
“Believe me, I get it. What's to be done is potentially dangerous. It's probably painful. It's certainly foolish. Nevertheless, I want those piercings done,” Elena asserted, having never felt surer of that than at this moment. Strangely, all of Dr Lowry's warning words had only served to strengthen her resolve. She would endure the ordeals to come. She was strong enough and would make Victor proud of her. Dr Lowry acknowledged her outburst with a raised eyebrow and continued to frown at her.
“Could be love, actually,” Lisa quipped from behind. “It's said to cause a temporary, or in more severe cases, even chronic immunity to reason. You've seen the symptoms before, Greg.”
Dr Lowry spared her a glare, then shrugged.
“Very well! So be it. I'll need you to sign these documents.” He indicated a stack of papers lying in front of Elena. “These forms state that all procedures are performed at your express request and that you've been properly informed and educated about the medical risks involved. Furthermore, they indemnify us from any liability regarding the direct and indirect consequences of your modifications. The usual legal nonsense, you know.”
She took the proffered pen and quickly signed her name at the bottom of each of the documents, not bothering to read them properly. After all, she had just been reminded that after today's proceedings her fate was sealed anyway. Lisa also signed each one as a witness and the doctor followed her, embossing each one to ensure legality. Then he addressed her again.
“Thank you. That was very brave, albeit not too prudent, if you want my opinion, which you manifestly do not. Lisa will prepare you for the operations and I'll join you when everything is ready.” He shook his head, adding under his breath, “Victor's one lucky bastard!”
On that note, he picked up a celebrity magazine and engrossed himself in it, probably to assess the latest trends in his field. The abrupt dismissal annoyed Elena, who had hoped for a more detailed explanation of what was in store for her, even though she most likely would have found his patronising tone hard to tolerate. Instead, she was forced to take comfort in the thought that Dr Lowry could get away with his patent lack of social grace solely because he was very, very good at what he did.
Lisa guided her down the corridor to a small room where she asked Elena to disrobe. She'd anticipated the request and had not bothered with underwear this time either. She remained standing naked while the physician's assistant exchanged her white coat for surgical scrubs, then they left the anteroom through another door leading into a small but well-equipped operating theatre. In its centre, surrounded by medical machinery and taking up the space of the traditional operating table was a contrivance reminiscent of gynaecological chair. It was of massive rubber and steel construction and gleamed with menace emphasized by the multitude of integrated restraints, obviously intended to strap its occupant down securely. The low temperature in the room was not the only reason for Elena's dark brown nipples to harden into flinty turrets.
“Sit down, please.”
Reluctantly, Elena complied with Lisa's request and surrendered herself to the chair's cool embrace. It was equipped not only with dedicated rests and stirrups for each leg, but provided a deep cradle for her head also. Immediately after she had sat down, Lisa expertly began to buckle the broad belts around her waist, chest, wrists and upper arms, as well as her thighs, knees and ankles, then went over all of them a second time, systematically tightening each one until Elena was completely immobilized. Eventually, she could not even turn her head, thanks to broad, padded clamps swung forward and firmly latched to press against it. Elena allowed herself to be restrained in silence, apart from the occasional sigh when Lisa drew a strap uncomfortably tight. During her time with Victor, she had been taught to endure bondage far worse without complaint.
Satisfied at last, Lisa draped her naked body with isolating sheets that left only her breasts and crotch uncovered. These areas she subsequently cleaned with a strangely slick, antiseptic solution, then Elena's face was subjected to the same treatment, starting with her nose. Lisa carefully swabbed the outside as well as inside her nostrils. Next in line were her ears, followed by her lips. Not even her oral cavity escaped Lisa's meticulous attention to detail, but finally, Lisa put away the swabs and pressed a button on the intercom next to the door.
“We're ready Greg.”
Dr Lowry appeared a few minutes later, attired in scrubs, mask and skull cap and immediately made a quick assessment of his assistant's preparations, taking extra notice of the strictness of Elena's restraints.
“Well done! Lisa knows how I like my subjects prepared. You can't move much, can you?”
“Not really,” Elena replied tersely striving to sound nonchalant, but unable to prevent a tremble from entering her voice. The enforced waiting had done nothing to calm her nerves.
“You should have realized by now we're playing for keeps. Are you having second thoughts?”
“No.” She forced the word out through clenched teeth. Simply shaking her head no was not an option, unfortunately.
“Good. It'd be too late to change your mind anyway,” Dr Lowry informed her sardonically.
He accepted the syringe that Lisa handed him, ceremoniously holding it upside down before Elena's hazel eyes while he gently tapped its side to shake loose some invisible air bubbles, then pushed the plunger until a drop of clear fluid was expelled from the glittering needle's tip. Elena watched the business end of the syringe approach her left breast in sick fascination, subconsciously holding her breath when it reached the nipple. She felt a small sting, quickly followed by a sensation of numbness spreading through her mound and did not even notice the subsequent injections when Dr Lowry systematically anaesthetized the whole area. Despite his foul humour and deliberately abrasive demeanour, he was a very conscientious professional, skilfully operating the plunger while he slowly pushed the needle in.
The procedure was repeated with her other breast before his attention moved to her pubic area. Elena could not directly observe his actions there, but after a series of pinpricks, the whole region gradually faded from her body awareness, as if it had ceased to exist. Next, it was her face's turn and she crossed her eyes trying to track the hypodermic needle's tip when it closed in on her nose. The first injection into the base was painful enough to send tears to her eyes, but fortunately, the pain subsided almost instantly and she barely noticed the follow-up punctures on each side. Her lips next received the same treatment, emptying the syringe.
“Please open your mouth for the next series of injections,” Dr Lowry requested, exchanging the emptied syringe for a full one.
Elena was left with no option but to open her mouth and with a few more pinpricks, her tongue had been transformed into an insensitive lump of flesh. The final act of numbing her ears was anticlimactic in comparison, although he used several injections there as well. When he lay down the syringe at long last, the whole lower half of her face was without sensation. It was an awkward feeling and she feared that with her slack features, she must surely look like the drooling idiot she berated herself to be in that moment, for having volunteered for all this in the first place.
In the meantime, his assistant had retrieved a large tray from the autoclave and placed it on a table next to Elena's chair. On top, right beside a frightening array of piercing needles, out of the side of her eye, she spotted the templates' and accompanying pins' familiar forms. Dr Lowry picked up the first template and held it before his eyes. Elena saw that it was the mould for her left breast. He studied it for a moment while an appreciative smile played around his lips before he pressed the dome shaped piece against her chest, capturing her breast.
“Lisa, the vacuum pump, please.” While he held the template in place his assistant attached a flexible tube to the downward pointing stem of the T-shaped nozzle that Elena had wondered about. Its purpose became clear as soon as Lisa switched on the apparatus at the tube's other end, when, compelled by a strong vacuum, Elena's numbed breast was irresistibly pulled into the dome's narrow confines. Thanks to the anaesthetized state of the tissue, she barely registered the fact that her elongated nipple was drawn a full inch into the side arm of the T-piece.
Dr Lowry made some minute adjustments to the template's fit, making sure that her breast was seated correctly inside its cup, then picked up a long needle from the tray. Its hollow shaft appeared huge to Elena's frightened eyes.
“Don't worry; these dermal punch type needles are extremely sharp,” Dr Lowry remarked cheerfully. Pointing to the tip, where the tapered end thinned to glittering point, he expanded. “They're made from surgical steel that's laser cut and so has a precision edge. It will slice cleanly through your skin without tearing or bruising and leave a perfectly defined hole that will heal quickly, even with a gauge this big.”
“Ow reasssurin'!” Elena's attempt at sarcasm was unfortunately sabotaged by her numbed tongue, but Dr Lowry was unimpressed anyway.
Unerringly, he located one of the holes at the mould's base, close to her chest, then in one swift movement, pushed the needle in, all the way through her breast and out again on the opposite side through the corresponding boring there.
Elena gasped audibly, even though the actual piercing was accompanied by barely a prickle of sensation. The sight of the glittering steel projecting from her body while she perceived barely any pain at all was highly surreal and for a moment she felt as if she was just experiencing an exceptionally vivid dream, from which she would wake up any minute now. But then, a drop of red blood welled from the puncture and reality came crashing in again.
‘It was actually happening! When I'm released from my bonds, I'll be marked forever! I've finally crossed the point of no return!' She was granted no respite to dwell on that realization though.
Without delay, Dr Lowry picked up a delicate metal tube and held it up for his assistant, who had opened what looked like a pack of silvery white spaghetti, and extracted a single strand. The ‘noodle' was actually hollow with an opening at one end, as became obvious when she carefully slipped it over the proffered tube like a miniature nylon stocking, expanding its gossamer fabric in the process. In a second step, she used an even thinner pin to push the stocking's closed end into the tiny tube's hollow core, until only the first centimetre of its circumference remained sheathed in the gauze like material, while the rest of it was bundled within.
“Here we have something quite extraordinary,” Dr Lowry explained, bringing the prepared tube in front of Elena's eyes. “You see, due to the random orientation of its fibres, scar tissue is normally less resilient than the healthy tissue it replaces. With this reinforcing lining in place, the story's different however. The nano-material it's made of is rather talented: on one hand the fabric is incredibly tough for its thinness and on the other, it will stimulate the growth of scar tissue and help to direct and align its fibres. During the healing, it fuses with the forming fistula and so the bottom line is that once healed, your piercings will have a much higher tensile strength than ordinary tissue. Of course, as with everything, there's a downside as well. Once your flesh has bonded to the lining, it can't be removed, unless cut out. However, in your case, that won't be an issue.”
This time around, Elena did not even try for a clever retort.
After he'd dipped the tube in a jar filled with some clear liquid, Dr Lowry used it to push the needle out of her breast, thereby replacing the latter with the former and simultaneously introducing the soaked lining into the puncture. His technique was quite ingenious, Elena conceded grudgingly, for the sleeve of gauze on its outer surface stuck to the wall of the tunnel punched into her flesh. Hence when Dr Lowry slowly drove the tube further in (displacing the needle in the process), more of the lining fabric unfolded from within, adhering to the wound and paving the tube's way through her breast. Eventually, its sheathed tip emerged on the other side, at which point the tube was retracted again, leaving the lining behind. Lisa cut off the protruding fabric with a scalpel, then Dr Lowry selected the appropriate plastic pin from those that had accompanied the template and began inserting it into the piercing. Thanks to the lining, the pin slid in effortlessly and so Elena had barely time to register the ominous cross-bore through its centre.
“The pin will keep the hole dilated during the healing, until your permanent restraint jewellery is fitted,” Dr Lowry informed her while he accurately aligned the pin, so that its ends were flush with her breast's outline inside the template.
The used needle was discarded, however, Lisa immediately handed him another. The two of them worked together smoothly, punching additional holes in Elena's body at a rapid fire pace. While the initial piercing had transfixed her breast horizontally, the next one went through vertically, perpendicular to the first. Both were situated close to her chest, next to the breast's base, yet the latter one was offset towards her nipple by about half a centimetre. The lining was emplaced in the exact same manner before the finished hole was filled by another pin; this one also with an opening at mid-point.
Piercing number three perforated her breast horizontally again, this time near its tip, beneath the base of the nipple, then a short, but rather thick pin, once again with an eye in its centre, occupied the lined tunnel that the needle had cut into her flesh.
The final piercing was the most extreme and ambitious yet and also turned out to be the reason for the central cross-bore that the pins filling the previous ones commonly featured. Using the side arms of the template's closing T-piece for guidance, Dr Lowry slowly forced a thin needle directly into the centre of her nipple then deeper into her breast, steadily turning it while he pushed it in. Despite the anaesthesia, the needle's slow but inexorable progress was accompanied by severe pain. Elena watched in sick fascination while centimetre by centimetre the metal spike sank further and further into her flesh until she felt suddenly queasy and had to avert her eyes. Six times the needle's advance stalled; evidently encountering one of the lateral piercings and having to punch through a layer of lining. Thankfully, soon after the last impediment had been overcome, the vertical needle projecting out from the centre of her nipple, stopped its advance for good and the stabbing pain abated to a more manageable dull throbbing. When Elena finally dared to look again, Dr Lowry had already retracted the needle and was readying the tiny tube designated to deploy the reinforcing lining. Resignedly, she shut her eyes and kept them pressed closed until the cessation of painful ministrations to her breast indicated that a thick dilating pin had been emplaced.
Elena reopened her eyes just in time to observe Lisa switch off the vacuum pump and remove its intake hose from the template's nozzle. With a slurping sound her breast detached from the mould and resumed its original shape, causing a bout of discomfort when the pins skewering it aligned themselves in slightly a changed configuration from the normal shape her unsupported breast would take. Dr Lowry gave her newly bared breast a cursory inspection and, apparently pleased with his findings, he picked up the template for Elena's other breast. Her inarticulate groan elicited another of his sardonic smiles.
“Nature loves symmetry, my dear, and so does Victor.”
And symmetry he got. Each step of the whole, elaborate procedure was faithfully repeated with her right breast until it had been turned into its counterpart's mirror image. Elena kept her eyes shut most of the time, resolved to suffer her self-imposed ordeal stoically. Nevertheless, she could not prevent a trickle of silent tears from wetting the hair in front of her ears, but there were worse indignities to be inflicted on her yet.
Dr Lowry positioned a caster stool between her wide-spread legs and sat down to work on her genitals. He pressed the respective template against her vulva and fiddled with it until her labia had settled into place between the appropriate recesses and ridges, then the vacuum pump was attached and switched on. The strong suction brought her genitals into close, over-all contact with the template's inner profile, stretching her nether lips further out and drawing her clitoris from the shelter of its hood, into the notch thoughtfully provided for it.
Elena watched Lisa handing the various implements for her mutilation to Dr Lowry; however, she could not monitor what he was doing with them down there. The clamps that pressed against her temples held her head absolutely immobile and so her field of vision was delineated by the blood streaked mounds of her breasts. Yet whatever he did, it involved an alarmingly great deal of pain, given the general effectiveness of the anaesthetic.
Although Elena tried to fend it off, her memory of the layout of the mould's numerous cross-bores rose unbidden, and, according to the image etched into her brain, her labia were destined to be pierced several times each and neither her clitoris nor its hood were permitted to escape unscathed, either. Judging from the steady progression of painful punctures, Dr Lowry slowly but surely worked his way up from her perineum to her clitoral hood; the latter and her clitoris probably being spared temporarily for an agonizing finale. Under the circumstances, Elena would have been heartily glad if her forebodings had turned out to be wrong; alas, some minutes later they once again reinforced their aggravating tendency to be spot on.
After a seemingly interminable and at times excruciating session, Dr Lowry finally rose and stepped back, watching closely while Lisa detached the vacuum pump and removed the mould, exposing Elena's blood engorged genitals to the room's chill air. Elena greeted the sudden cold with a gasp, immediately followed by a grateful sigh when it brought about a welcome easing of the dully throbbing pain. As previously, Dr Lowry took a moment to critically review his work before he turned his attention to the last body part scheduled to receive its permanent modifications on this fateful day: Elena's face.
He and Lisa took up positions on either side of her head. The padded clamps that held it in their vice like grip allowed no movement whatsoever, so darting her eyes back and forth between them was the only option Elena had to follow their preparations. She watched him select a somewhat shorter, but comparatively large gauge needle, while his assistant picked up the triangular template for her nose. Elena eyed it with ill-concealed dread, for to her, the evidently imminent piercing of her nose was an act that like no other would openly proclaim her status as a slave. In addition, she was certain Victor would exploit the potential for controlling and humiliating her that was inherent in the piercing of this sensitive organ to the fullest extent. Yet, through her near-panic, she still recognized an altogether different emotion that came into play as well: an intuitive, almost preconscious craving for the very act she rationally dreaded.
She followed the mould's approach until her eyes crossed and its upper end brushed against the tip of her nose. Lisa paused for a moment to make sure that the oblate, half-cones extending from its inside were aligned with the nostrils, then slowly pressed the device more fully onto her nose. Elena felt the cones slide up into her nose, stretching its side wings and at the same time rubbing uncomfortably against her sensitive septum while Lisa continued to press the mould forward and slightly down. At last it pressed firmly against the end of Elena's septum and her panicky breathing now became distinctly audible when it whistled through the hollow cones.
As soon as Lisa had the template fully emplaced, Dr Lowry took over. With sure hands, he inserted the needle into the template's single cross-bore and slowly slid it in until its tip came into contact with the right side of Elena's nose. She felt a prick when the sharp point scratched her skin a generous finger-breadth from her nostrils, just below the point at which the cartilage attached to her nasal bone. She knew this to be just the overture and braced herself, clenching her teeth so hard that corded muscles stood out in stark relief on her jaw.
Dr Lowry steadied the template with his one hand, then, in one swift movement, he thrust the needle in. Tightly trapped in the mould her flesh had no recourse. The tubular needle perforated the right wing of her nose, easily punched through the stiff cartilage of her septum and finally emerged from her left nostril’s outer wall. The transfixion of her nose was accompanied by a stabbing pain that made Elena's eyes water, yet it subsided surprisingly fast, thanks to the powerful anaesthetic kicking in. It was over before she had a chance to scream.
‘Yes!' The deed was done.
Once the jewellery that Victor wanted was affixed there would be no chance of hiding the telltale sign of what she had become, for the stark nature of her modifications went far beyond what could possibly pass for an ill-advised, albeit innocent attempt at adornment. Elena experienced a moment of perfect calm when her long-suppressed masochism finally triumphed over the familiar discord of dissenting voices in her head. In stunned silence, she slowly released her held breath and blinked away her tears. Looking down her nose, she could just make out the needle's blurred ends sticking out from the template on both sides, watching mesmerized when a drop of blood lazily formed at the needle's tip, wanting this magical moment to last forever. Alas, an uncaring universe did not cater to her wishes.
Dr Lowry and Lisa continued, as efficient as ever and even before the drop reached critical mass where gravity could overcome the combined forces of adhesion and surface tension, the needle was displaced by a now-familiar sheathing pin. Momentarily, the pin was retracted, leaving only the lining in place, then Dr Lowry inserted a tiny scalpel into the hollow cone that distended her left nostril and cut through the tough fabric, trimming down the excess lining. He repeated the process on the other side so that Lisa could carefully withdraw the template while the remaining lining stayed in place. Nevertheless, there was some drag on the newly pierced holes and Elena was heartily glad when the template cleared her nose at last. Once that was accomplished however, the dilating pin was once more run through her piercings, considerably heightening her discomfort. Since this pin was meant to stay until the flesh healed, she would have to put up with its irritating presence, just as she had to make the best of the others that kept the new holes in her breasts and vulva occupied. Elena was thus given an inkling of what her permanent fittings would feel like. They would definitely take some getting used to. It was probably for the best that this latest piercing had left her emotionally drained and slightly dazed, especially since her current troubles were far from over. Next, her mouth received its share of not so tender attentions.
“Open wide and extend your tongue, please!” Dr Lowry requested.
With weary apprehension Elena eyed the mould for her mouth that Lisa held ready to be fitted. Whereas the template for her nose had featured only a single, albeit massive cross-bore, this one was riddled with seemingly dozens of holes. Resignedly, she complied as best as she could with his request, but was nonetheless rewarded with a nearly dislocated jaw when Lisa forcefully pushed the mould past the barrier of her teeth. Once inside, the strain was relieved only marginally since the template kept her jaws painfully spread apart and her muscles began to protest their abuse almost instantly. Elena fervently hoped that the planned procedures would soon be completed. First though, Lisa connected the vacuum pump, then turned it on and the strong suction immediately pulled Elena's tongue far out and fully into the thin plastic sheath waiting to accept it. At the same time, her lips and gums adhered to the lifelike, contoured profiles provided for them that prevented her from even twitching a muscle. With her mouth forced open wide, her lips stretched tight around the mould's gasket flange and her tongue painfully pulled out, Elena had been masterfully prepared. Everything was readily accessible and she was helpless to resist what was to come in any way.
Of course, Dr Lowry was ready to take advantage of the situation and availing himself of his seemingly inexhaustible supply of needles, he soon had Elena decked out with even more holes. After he had pierced her tongue for the second time, turning the numbed lump in her mouth into a dully throbbing one, everything became a blur for Elena for the strains and stresses of her prolonged suffering finally took their toll. Now, as the anaesthetic's effectiveness slowly diminished, her breasts and genitals began to hurt in earnest. She closed her eyes and allowed her conscious mind to withdraw into a shell, blanking out the unpalatable reality of her situation, i.e. being defencelessly strapped into a chair and perforated in every imaginable way... all by her own choice!
The further pinpricks in her tongue and lips barely registered on her mind, and she accepted the ensuing emplacement of dilating pins while almost forgetting about the formerly longed for extraction of the template. By then, the aching of her wide-spread jaws was just another thread in the tapestry of her misery. Besides, the relief of its eventual removal was short-lived, as Dr Lowry immediately switched targets and began his campaign on her ears. First, the respective moulds were applied; their anchoring extensions pushed deeply into her ear canals until they pressed uncomfortably against the tympanic membranes, then, the piercing needles' attack on her auricles commenced. Only after the constant barrage had ebbed for quite some time did Elena gradually emerge from her trance-like state and let herself become aware of her surroundings again.
To her surprise, Dr Lowry had already left the room, leaving the after-action mop-up to his able assistant. Lisa cleaned away the dried blood and swabbed all wounds with an antiseptic that was thankfully - now that Elena was ready to appreciate small mercies again - one of the non-stinging varieties. Where required, she then secured the dilating pins either by screwing them further in until their threaded ends engaged, or plugging the end caps onto their exposed heads.
Finally, she freed a physically and mentally drained Elena from her restraints and helped her out of the chair. Rising too fast after the long enforced immobilisation, Elena felt suddenly dizzy and would undoubtedly have toppled over if Lisa had not supported her. Her brain was flooded by pain signals from nearly every part of her body and for good measure, the throbbing behind her brow promised to turn into a major headache. With Lisa's help, she managed the few steps to an adjoining room appointed as a recovery area and with her every movement, the new, albeit temporary, hardware invading her flesh made its presence felt in unexpected and generally awkward, uncomfortable ways. Elena gingerly lowered herself onto the soft bed and with eagerness accepted Lisa's offer to administer a painkiller. Mercifully, the analgesic took effect almost immediately after the injection and Elena slipped into a dreamless sleep of pure exhaustion.
THIS IS PAGE THIRTY-FOUR OF THE FICTION SECTION
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