To start at the beginning, use this link: Link to Chapter 1
The next day, Monica was assigned to work in the laundry area with Jennifer. They were just getting ready to take the laundry cart and gather up the dirty clothes when Mistress Calahan rushed into the room.
“Mr. Ruiz has commanded that we go into lockdown.” She told them. “Return to your rooms immediately and shackle yourselves to your beds. I’ll be coming to check on each of you in a few minutes.”
Monica wanted desperately to ask what was going on, but all she could do was say “yes ma’am,” and go to her bedroom as instructed. She got on her bed and closed the shackles around her ankles and one wrist. Of course, she couldn’t shackle her other wrist without help. Without a key, that didn’t really matter, anyway. A few minutes later, Mistress Calahan came into the room.
“No, I’m not allowed to tell you why we’re doing this.” She said immediately. “I don’t have a lot of information myself. But it may be a while, so why don’t I unlock you so you can put a diaper on.”
Monica got up, took off her clothes, and put a diaper on. She put her leotard on over top, but left her tights off. Then she got back into her bed and locked the shackles again. Mistress Calahan locked the last shackle around her remaining wrist, then pulled the sheets up to cover her.
“I’m included in the lockdown, and I have no idea when Mr. Ruiz will come and release me. I’ll come let you out as soon as I can.”
Several hours passed in boredom and fear as Monica lay in her room wondering how long they would be locked up. Eventually she relaxed enough to fall asleep. She awoke when the lights turned on in her room and Mistress Calahan entered.
“It’s about 2:00 in the afternoon.” She told Monica as she unlocked the shackles. “We are confined to the harem until Mr. Ruiz can update security, but some guards will bring the dirty clothes to the door so that you and Jennifer can still do the laundry. Some of the girls assigned to cleaning will help you out.”
Monica enjoyed the afternoon doing laundry with several of the other women. Despite not being allowed to talk, they comforted each other with pats and hugs. They also spent some of their down time playing “rock, paper, scissors,” and various rhythm games where they could clap hands or snap their fingers without having to speak.
The next morning, their routine returned to normal, though Monica noticed more guards patrolling the halls and stationed throughout the house. She was assigned to serve food in the mermaid room after her own dinner, so she hoped she might overhear Mr. Ruiz talking about what happened to cause the lockdown. Although he seemed angry as he ate, he was alone, so Monica didn’t overhear any conversations. She did notice that the mermaids were gone. “Were they on lockdown too?”
When the meal was done, Mr. Ruiz told Monica to wait by his chair, then he pulled out his phone and called Marta again.
“I need to know where he is, and what he is doing.” He said after confirming who he was talking to.
He spoke for several more minutes, even pausing to look at a picture on his phone. Finally, he turned to Monica.
“You have permission to speak to your sister for a minute.” He said, handing her the phone.
“Marta? Is that you?” Monica asked, her voice a bit rough from disuse.
“Yes of course it is me.” Answered Marta. “Are you OK?”
“He hasn’t hurt you?”
“No, he treats us well, other than not being able to leave or speak.”
“He doesn’t even let you talk?”
“No. But we get food and clothes, and the guards aren’t allowed to touch us.”
“Does he make you have sex with him?”
“Not me. Some of the other women do.”
At that point, Mr. Ruiz took the phone away from Monica.
“So you heard it from her own mouth. Your sister is OK. I expect a report from you again tomorrow.”
Monica couldn’t hear her sister’s reply, but she could guess from what Mr. Ruiz said.
“I won’t hurt her, as long as you continue to cooperate. Be ready for my call tomorrow.”
Mr. Ruiz hung up and then left, leaving Monica alone to clean up the dishes and return to her room. She felt bad that her sister was being forced to betray her employer because of her. But what could she do? The doors were always locked, and the guards had always been careful. Trying to escape would only make things worse for herself and possibly her sister. So Monica went back to her lonely bedroom. The house continued to seem tense for the next few days, with extra guards who watched Monica’s every move closely. Monica was surprised when she was assigned to serve in the mermaid room again. Normally they rotated the assignment and there would be more time in between trips to the in-house restaurant.
Mr. Ruiz was present again, and there was a single mermaid in the tank, swimming slowly back and forth in front of the window. “Where were the others?” Monica wondered, especially since this mermaid didn’t look familiar. Was she new? Her swimming looked a little clumsy compared to the previous group, as if she hadn’t been practicing for long.
The dinner proceeded normally, but when he was finished, Mr. Ruiz didn’t get up and leave.
“Stand right here.” He told Monica.
Then Mr. Ruiz motioned to the guard at the door. The guard left for a moment, then came back accompanied by another guard. One of them was carrying a long metal pole, and the other one had a bulging gym bag. They walked over in front of the water tank and flipped open a hidden cover on the floor. Then the one with the pole inserted it into a hole under the cover. He twisted it until he could hear a click, then pulled and twisted on the pole to test it. It remained firmly in place.
“Go stand with your back to the pole.” Mr. Ruiz instructed Monica.
“Yes sir.” She answered with a sinking feeling in her stomach.
She stood in front of the pole and the guards pulled several ropes out of the gym bag. They tied Monica’s hands together behind the pole, and then tied her feet and knees together and fastened them to the pole as well. Ropes were also wrapped around her waist and just under her breasts. Finally, they sealed her mouth shut with the foam tape.
“I’m sorry it had to come to this.” Mr. Ruiz said. “But your sister needs some encouragement.”
Her captor then took out his phone and used it to take a picture of her. He spent a few minutes working with the phone, then called a number.
“Marta. It’s so good to hear from you again.” He said.
“I just sent you a photo. Did you see it?”
“Why is your sister tied up? Well I’ve been very disappointed the last few days. After the high-quality information you were giving us, now you claim that you don’t know where Mr. Johnson is, and that he’s not communicating with you like he used to.”
“I agree. He might be getting suspicious. It is unfortunate that we didn’t manage to catch the mermaids at the island. But I still need the information and you are my best source.”
“I thought some encouragement might help you to be creative. Mr. Johnson may not be communicating directly, but I’m sure a person like you with your contacts in the department can figure out what is happening.”
“What will happen to Monica? Nothing. She will stay right where she is until you get some information for me. You can call this number any time night or day, and if you have good information for me, I’ll let your sister go back to her normal duties.”
“I believe you. Yes, I’m sure you will do what you promise. Especially since your sister will be standing here waiting for your call.”
Now Monica understood a few things. Apparently the mermaids had escaped somehow, and Mr. Ruiz was using information from Marta to try and track them down. But if Marta’s boss was now suspicious, would Marta be able to find out anything?
Mr. Ruiz hung up the phone and stood in front of Monica. He patted her cheek.
“I truly hope your sister gives me what I need. But I’m afraid it’s going to be a long night for you.”
He walked out of the room. A few minutes later, Alexia came out of the kitchen to clean up the table. Her quick intake of breath as she saw Monica revealed her surprise. She rushed over and looked into Monica’s eyes, trying to ask a question without words. Monica tried to shrug as much as the ropes would let her, then nodded her head slightly to indicate that she was OK. Not daring to stay too long, Alexia returned to her task and gathered the dishes from the table. As usual, cleaning up after one person only took a few minutes, and then Monica saw the light in the kitchen go off. Alexia walked through the room and rubbed Monica’s shoulder before leaving the restaurant and turning off the light. Then there was nothing left for Monica to do other than stand there. Her back was to the mermaid tank, so she didn’t even have the luxury of watching the mermaid. She tried to twist and struggle in the ropes, but the guards had done a thorough job and she was not able to loosen her bonds in any way. After a while she gave up, slumping into her bonds to let the ropes hold up a portion of her weight.
The hours crawled slowly by and Monica tried to sleep, but every time she relaxed enough to fall asleep, her body would be startled awake by the ropes holding her bound. Eventually, morning came and light trickled into the room through the mermaid pool behind her. The restaurant remained empty, however, and Monica allowed her head to droop. In time she was forced to wet herself and the urine trickling down her legs only exacerbated her discomfort. As the day progressed, thirst began to torment her. She tried not to weep, but the tears flowed of their own accord. Her feet hurt, and her legs were in agony as the muscles protested their long confinement. Finally, dinner time approached and Lucia came into the room. She seemed surprised and shocked to see Monica tied to a post, and she hesitated a moment, then looked away and scurried into the kitchen. A few minutes later, Mr. Ruiz came into the room. He walked over to Monica and ran his hand along her arm.
“You look like you have had a very bad day.” He said. “I wish I could let you go, but your sister still hasn’t been able to get me the information I need. I hope she finds something very soon, because it pains me to see you in this situation.”
He left and went to sit down at one of the tables. Instead of his usual spot, he chose a table farther away from Monica, near the entrance. Probably because of the strong smell permeating the area near his prisoner. Monica watched as Lucia served dinner. Lucia avoided looking in her direction as if her situation might be catching. When the meal was complete and the table cleared, Lucia brought the mop and bucket over to where Monica was standing and cleaned up the puddle around Monica’s feet. She continued to avert her eyes, and when she was done she quickly left the restaurant. Monica resigned herself to another agonizingly long night. What if Marta wasn’t able to find what Mr. Ruiz wanted? How long would she be left here? Would he let her die of thirst? From what she had seen, she was very much afraid that the answer was yes.
Monica’s head had drooped forward and she was dozing fitfully when the lights to the restaurant came back on. Mr. Ruiz entered the room, wearing a long silk dressing gown instead of his normal attire. He was followed by two guards.
“Good news, Monica!” He told her. “With a little bit of encouragement, your sister got very creative. She just called me with some very good information. Although she is no longer privy to her boss’s direct communications, she was able to view the expense records for her department, and she found out that her boss had chartered a boat called La Reina. I am making plans to find that boat tomorrow. Since your sister has been so helpful, I can let you go now.”
Mr. Ruiz motioned to the two guards, who began to untie the ropes that held her bound.
“Marcus and Enrique will escort you back to the harem.” Mr. Ruiz said. “I will be busy tomorrow, but maybe when I get back it will finally be time for us to spend some time together. Have a nice rest.”
Mr. Ruiz left and the two guards finished untying the ropes. When the last rope connecting her to the post was removed, Monica fell forward as her legs no longer had the strength to hold her up. Enrique caught her and held her up as Marcus finished removing the rope binding her ankles.
“You go ahead and take her to the harem.” Marcus said. “I’ll put away the ropes and the post.”
Enrique put Monica’s arm around his shoulder and started walking toward the door.
“Just hold on to my shoulder and do your best to walk.” Enrique told Monica.
The strength gradually returned to Monica’s legs and feet as they walked slowly through the darkened halls with Enrique helping to support her weight. By the time they arrived at the harem door, she was standing mostly on her own.
“Can you make it to your room, or do you need my help?” Asked Enrique.
Monica just nodded her head, then made her own wobbly way into the harem. Rather than go directly to her room, she took off her wet clothes and threw them into the dirty laundry basket in the laundry room. Then she took a shower before going to her room, pulling on a dry leotard, and collapsing into her bed. She desperately wanted to drink some water, but her mouth was still sealed with the foam tape. She would have to wait for Mistress Calahan and her solvent in the morning.
When the lights came on in the morning, Monica felt much better. There were some bruises on her arms, legs, and body from the ropes, and she was terribly thirsty, but her legs had regained most of their strength. She showered again and Mistress Calahan sprayed her gag with solvent so that she could finally slake her burning thirst. She was assigned to the laundry with two other women, so she put on a red leotard and reported to breakfast.
“I know you are still recovering, so I put you on laundry duty with Jennifer and Andrea.” Mistress Calahan said. “They can do most of the lifting and carrying and you can stay in the laundry room and do the lighter tasks.”
“Yes ma’am.” Said Monica gratefully.
The day was relatively quiet and Monica was able to stay in the laundry room and fold clothes or do other non-strenuous tasks. Shortly after dinner, however, they were told to go on lockdown again. This time Monica changed into a diaper before getting into bed, and Mistress Calahan had nothing to say when she came in. She just locked the manacle around Monica’s wrist and said she didn’t know how long this would last. The confinement lasted much longer than the previous time – all through the night and the next day, then through a second night. Monica was asleep when Mistress Calahan returned, with a collar around her neck and a guard holding her leash.