Chapter 6

Two Things That Belong Together

copyright 1997 by Pat Powers

The strange thing about going back to work was that it was so ... normal. I managed to go to sleep Sunday night by deciding I would call in sick. But when I got up morning, habit helped me get up. I was too groggy to be frightened.

To be honest, I think what sent me into work was a certain calculation -- that there was no point in going through what Abernathy had put me through on Friday night, if I didn't keep my job. I had paid the price -- might as well collect.

So I drove in, said "Hi!" to everybody as if nothing happened, and everybody said "Hi!" right back, as if nothing had happened -- except of course for Tom's getting fired.

All that week I had a feeling of being naked in the back of my mind all the time. Because I couldn't escape the feeling that people in the office knew what had happened. It was like -- have you ever had that dream where you're out in public and you suddenly realize that you're naked, or that your breasts or ass are exposed? You know that uneasy feeling you get because you know something's really wrong, but you're asleep so you can't really figure out exactly what's wrong with walking around with your breasts hanging out, but you know that people are definitely looking at you?

I've had that dream a lot.

And I felt that way most of the week, except that I was awake. It was an uneasy feeling, but the comforting normalcy of the office routine was more than enough to shove it to the back of my mind. One of the great things about my new job was that you couldn't think about anything else while you did it.

And since Abernathy's response to Tom's absence was to promote us all and hire a new junior editor to fill the slot I vacated when I moved up to managing editor (with a nice raise) I had a new job to learn.

Not that new, really. I discovered I'd been doing a lot of Paula's job when I was a junior editor. I resolved to let the new junior editor do a lot of mine, since I was sure to be doing a lot of Paula's work as editor, now that she was editor.

So everything seemed to be returning to normal -- until Thursday afternoon, when Abernathy called me into his office.

I had thought it was just going to be another routine transaction, but I got very nervous when I noticed the way Abernathy carefully shut the door behind me when I entered.

Abernathy had one of those combination VCR/TV units on the corner of his desk -- the kind usually used to give presentations to borderline illiterate sales people.

"I've got a little something I think you'll find interesting to see," said Abernathy as he picked a remote control unit off the desk and turned a tape on.

My face appeared on the screen -- bigger than life. And I was wearing a leather collar. And I was sucking Abernathy's dick.

"My dick and your mouth, two things that really belong together, don't you think?" Abernathy said.

"No, I don't think," I said coldly, moving to get up.

"Now, don't get up," Abernathy said, his voice suddenly colder. "I've got a particular reason for showing you these pictures. I've got several I want you to see. I'm making a point. Sit."

I sat. It would be better to know what he had planned.

Abernathy walked over to the computer which sat behind his desk. It had a color monitor which was turned so I could see it. Abernathy punched a button on its keyboard, and suddenly the screen came alive -- with an image of me, kneeling on the bed, my legs spread wide (roped that way, actually, but you couldn't tell because the ropes around my ankles were out of the frame) pulling my butt cheeks apart as best I could with my cuffed hands, staring back at the camera, a gag in my mouth.

I looked exactly -- EXACTLY -- like the kind of slut who winds up in the pages of sex magazines pulling her pussy lips apart for the camera (except that my hair wasn't all bouffed out and I wasn't wearing all that much makeup).

"As you may have guessed, I had a few videocams planted in the room during our meeting Friday night," Abernathy said, pushing another button to show an image of me on my back, legs once again spread wide with the aid of ropes, this time with one hand in front of me and one underneath me. The chain that connected my cuffs ran between my legs, and it was just long enough that, when I laid on my back, it dug into my pussy, so that in the photo it appeared to come right out of it.

I remembered the feel of that chain. Thrummmmmm.

"I never said you could do that!" I said angrily. "I never said you could take those pictures!"

"I never asked," Abernathy said, "mainly because I never had to. You signed a model release, you see, when you joined Professional Publications."

"But you said that was just in case we used a staff photo to promote the magazine!" I protested.

"I did, and it was -- but the release is a blanket release -- it would hold up in court as giving me permission to take these photos as well," said Abernathy.

"What's your point then?" I asked coldly, staring at the images of myself rendered pornographic.

"Well, as you can see, these pictures came out very nicely -- a welcome addition to my personal video collection, I'm sure you'll agree," said Abernathy. "But, as a publisher, I'm also always interested in salable materials."

"NO!" I shouted.

"I suspected that you might feel this way," Abernathy said, grinning. "I assume you don't want these videos sent to any movie producers, or the stills I've created from them sent to any magazines. Or Internet sites. I'm certain there's a market for them."

I nodded. I was so angry and frightened I couldn't say anything.

"You have the means to dissuade me," said Abernathy. "I have to tell you, I really enjoyed our session last Friday night. I think that, at some level, you enjoyed it, too, even if the circumstances under which you participated were, shall we say, less than ideal. I'd like to meet with you again this Friday night -- in fact, I'd like to make Friday night a standing date between the two of us."

I stared into the distance. Abernathy's voice seemed to be coming from very far away -- from hell, in fact.

"If you'll oblige me in this regard -- just spend a few hours with me on Fridays, that's all -- I'll be happy to file all these videos away in my personal library and never let anyone else see them," said Abernathy.

"You know that what you are doing is illegal," I said. "Blackmail, I believe it's called."

"Now, that was really uncalled-for," Abernathy said in offended tones. "I'm free to do whatever I like with these pictures, legally. I have a model release from you, and as for the circumstances under which the pictures and videos were taken, it would be your word against mine -- certainly, there's nothing in the videos to indicate that you were coerced. Indeed, the videos display a certain cooperativeness on your part throughout. In fact, there's no way that any reasonable person could look at these pictures and videos and come to any conclusion other than that you cooperated to the full.

"It would be so EASY to portray you as a little slut who cooperated with me in making the pictures, then attempted to blackmail me by claiming you were forced," said Abernathy. "All the evidence would point that way. I could even maintain that you did it because you were afraid you'd be fired for making the error that got Tom fired."

My heart flamed at this outrageous twisting of reality, but at the same time, something cold and logical within me saw the truth behind Abernathy's words. It was a web of lies, a really twisted vision, but everything I have ever read or heard about the criminal justice system, especially where rape is concerned, indicated that it would be the twisted vision that the jurors would see.

I remembered the Florida jury that had let a rapist off because the woman he attacked was not wearing panties, hence she was "dressed for sex" and anything that happened to her was her fault.

Any such jury that saw those photos of me in leather bondage gear, doing all those things ... there was no way I could explain it, that people like them would understand. Which was a lot of people.

I guess my feelings showed very clearly on my face, because Abernathy pulled another Ving card out of his pocket and slid it across the desk to me. Room 236, this time.

I took the card and silently put it in my purse.

"How do I know you'll keep your word?" I asked, steeling my voice.

"Because if I start showing these around, I'll lose Friday nights with you, if you find out," Abernathy said. "And things like that tend to get back to people. Someone you know will see the photos, and talk to you, and that will be that for any chance of a mutually cooperative relationship between us. So my leverage with you will be the videos and photos. Your leverage with me will be Friday nights."

"No more videos," I said.

"For the time being," Abernathy said amicably. He was lying, I could tell, but what could I do about it?

"By the way, here's a hard copy of one of my favorite poses," said Abernathy, handing me a photo that showed me on my knees, leaning back and supporting myself on my extended, cuffed hands and licking the tip of Abernathy's dick with the tip of my tongue. My eyes were closed and my breasts were pressed into tight mounds against Abernathy's thighs as he loomed over me. It had been a long night.

"You know, you're strikingly beautiful," said Abernathy, looking at the photo. "To let so much beauty and sensuality go unrecorded would be a real waste. Take this photo and think about that.

"I think you'll find your experience more enjoyable, this time," Abernathy continued. "You'll warm up to it as it becomes less of an unknown for you. I know you enjoy it on a certain level already -- your body told me that last Friday. Give your body a chance. It has the right idea. Go with the flow."

So, Abernathy thought I would enjoy being raped -- this time. And next time. And next time.

The man had enslaved me.

"Take a little time to compose yourself before you leave," Abernathy said as he turned off computer and the VCR, leaving those damning images stored indelibly on tape, on a hard drive, and in my brain.

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