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The Personal Trainer

Part 1


  I came awake, as I'd become used to doing, a few minutes before the start of my shift, a few minutes in which I had time to gulp down a quantity of gruel from the plastic teat at one end of the cage and empty my bladder and bowels into the filthy straw at the other. By the time the door in the Wheel slid upwards, copying the matching door of the cage, I was ready to enter. The Wheel shuddered under my weight and the door slid downwards, trapping me inside where I extended myself on all-fours in the three foot space between the floor and the hub, crouched with my weight on the balls of my feet and the mitts over my hands.

  The brake came off with its usual loud click, the Wheel trembled, and I began to walk forward as quickly as I could. But I could never move off fast enough to escape the first shocks from my collar which only ceased when I'd scrambled far enough up the curve of the wheel. There, in fear of the pain which I knew would strike if I failed, I kept walking onward and upward, the Wheel revolving under the shifting weight of my body as it tried to carry me downward again.

  This exercise, this continual slow walk on all-fours up the gentle slope of the interior of the Wheel, was easy enough at first. Fresh from my four-hour break, fed and watered, I still had the leisure and strength to look out through the steel mesh sides at my surroundings.

  To my right, down on the floor, its door only an inch from the side of the Wheel, was the cage I slept in, a three feet wide and high, four feet long structure of thick steel mesh. Perched on brackets in the wall nearby was my food tank, half full of thin gruel, and next to it a pallet holding a stack of the sacks of pig meal which I was given to eat, and beyond that the barn stretched off into the dimness. But it was to the left that I mainly looked, for there was the sun-lit yard and beyond it the cottage inhabited by Crimson and her two slave-girls. Moving easily, and not yet panting under the constant effort of climbing the gentle slope, I watched the slave-girl Violet exit the kitchen and sit at the table under the window. She took out a cigarette and lit it, then stretched out in her seat and blew a luxurious cloud of smoke into the warm air. Her colleague, Rose, joined her, bringing with her a tall, dewy jug and two glasses. Slaves they might be, yet they seemed to live easy enough lives as Crimson's accomplices, helping her with her submissive transvestite clients of whom there was a constant procession. Both girls ignored me entirely apart from a glance. They were used to seeing me at work by now, and that led me to wonder just how long I'd been here.

  It was strange, and a little shocking, that I'd no idea except that it must be several weeks. When one's days and nights are split into roughly four hour sessions of work and rest, it becomes only too easy to lose track, and I wondered how long it would take me to conform to a normal life of sixteen hours of activity and eight hours sleep when I was released. But that would only be when Crimson thought my purpose had been realised, and neither she nor I had any notion of when that would be. And that caused me to muse upon the sequence of events that had brought me here.


  It was at a 'Munch,' a light-hearted social event for those practising BDSM, that I met Jim. I hadn't visited the pub for the Munch; in fact, I'd no idea what was happening when the room I was in was invaded by a crowd of people. They took no notice of me where I sat to one side, perhaps thinking I was there for the same purpose as themselves. I sat and listened, saying nothing, and presently learned what was going on. I wasn't shocked at all; they seemed a pleasant gathering of eccentrics, and friendly, too. The room became crowded, but not unduly so, and a middle-aged man, holding a drink, came and asked me politely if I minded him sitting at the small table I'd commandeered in a corner. I invited him to sit, of course, and he began a conversation in a startling manner, by assuring me, with a smile, that he wasn't 'gay!'

  He obviously thought I was a member of the group; he told me his name was 'Jim,' and that he was a 'pony-boy,' and added that he'd just returned from a full week spent in that role, something he intended to repeat as soon as he could raise the money. I thought it a little odd to enjoy pulling a cart around, harnessed between the shafts like a horse, but, to a keen student of human nature like myself, it was probably not that odd: I knew something about BDSM and was acquainted with the practice of 'animal-role playing.' But that one could spend a full week in that role was news to me, and I enquired how he'd found a place where he could indulge his desire, upon which Jim had no hesitation in telling me about the people he called 'the Facilitators.'

    'That's what they call themselves,' he told me. 'I found them on the Internet, described as being a company called 'Exotic Holidays. And you can't get more exotic than the holiday I've just had!' He laughed uproariously. 'Pony-play might not do for you, though,' he added with a smile.

  I knew exactly what he meant; he was referring to my seventeen stone of weight and five foot, eight inches of height. I wasn't annoyed, only confessed, with a sigh, that I was finding it impossible to lose weight. Yes, I knew it was easy enough in principle to eat less and exercise more, but, in practice, I soon found myself backsliding from the various regimes I entered; for example, as I told Jim, I was a member of no less that four gymnasiums, and hadn't visited a single one for weeks. I needed a Personal Trainer, I joked; someone who'd control my diet and force me to exercise.

    'You need to find some Dominant with a private prison cell,' Jim laughed. Becoming serious, he said there may be other ways. 'Go and see the Facilitators,' he advised me. Taking up a beermat, he wrote something on it and passed it to me. 'Their web page,' he said. 'You'll find it expensive talking to them; they're not fond of time-wasters,' he warned with a smile. 'But it will be well worth while for you, I hope.' Rising, he bade me goodbye and went to join some friends he'd spotted at the bar.

  An hour later, back in my tiny flat, I booted up my laptop.


  The web page of 'Exotic Holidays' was simple to the point of starkness. There was the usual button to be clicked only by those professing to be eighteen or over, and beyond that a message to the effect that any enquiries would only be answered on receipt of a fee of ten pounds transferred over the Internet for each email sent to them! Interviews were held regularly around the country, and could be arranged for a fee of a hundred pounds.

  I blinked at the screen: I could see what Jim had meant about discouraging 'time-wasters.' Should

I, or shouldn't I ask for an interview, of course? In the end, unable to make up my mind, I slept upon it. But the next morning I bit the bullet, sent off a tenner, and asked for an interview. A reply came in minutes. I was in luck; they were holding interviews in my own city next week and a hundred pounds would purchase me an hour. Sighing, I took out my credit card and typed in its details. The reply was immediate. An appointment had been made for me in a week's time.

  The huge, anonymous hotel near the airport was known to me. Along with rooms for travellers, it also rented out office space ranging from suites to single rooms, all fitted out with the latest in communication technology. Arriving on time, I was directed to one the the smaller suites, a unit of two rooms tucked away at the rear of the ground floor. Reaching the door, I glanced at the card holder on the wall near the jamb. 'Exotic Holidays,' it read, sure enough, and I steeled myself and knocked nervously.

  Bidden to enter, I did so, to find a middle-aged, grey-haired woman seated at a desk behind a word processor and a telephone. I introduced myself, she picked up the phone and said a few words into it, then rose and preceded me to the other door opposite the entrance and opened it. 'Your eleven o'clock appointment, Mrs. Martin,' she said, ushering me inside. 'Thank you, Miss Briggs; please bring in a pot of tea,' the woman behind the desk told her. 'Come in,' she said to me. 'Take a seat.' 

  Waiting for the tea, I had the leisure to observe the seated woman as she sat bent over the paperwork on her desk. Middle-aged and grey-haired like her secretary, she worked with businesslike efficiency, reading the various documents stacked neatly on her desk and now and then making a note on a pad at her elbow.

  Sensing my regard, she looked up and apologised. She would not be long, she said, and the wait would give me time to arrange my thoughts and define my request in the best way I could. There was truth in that, for I suddenly found it wasn't as easy to spell out my needs as I'd imagined.

  Tea came, we drank it, and Mrs. Martin replaced the cap on her pen, put her papers to one side, and fixed me with lively, grey eyes. 'Well?' she said. 'How can we help you?'

  Haltingly, and with many stops and starts, I explained my desires, finally stammering to a stop. The only sound was that of the scratching of the pencil of Miss Briggs, who had slipped into the room and was taking down a shorthand record of the conversation. Mrs. Martin spoke. 'Boiled down,' she began briskly, 'you want to put yourself in the hands of someone who will enforce a strict diet and exercise regime upon you until you've lost eighty pounds or so, a regime out of your own control and which will not cease until your trainer is satisfied with your physical condition. Is that what you want us to find for you? Someone who will do this?'

  I nodded vehemently. Mrs. Martin, deep in thought, stared into space, tapping her teeth with a pencil. 'Well,' she said finally. 'I think we can fulfil your requirements to your satisfaction if you would care to leave a deposit of five hundred pounds with Miss Briggs here on your way out. If we do not succeed in finding a trainer for you, that money will be refunded when you call here in a month's time.'

  Many other questions followed, questions about my health and financial circumstances. I satisfied her on the latter, but she refused to proceed until I'd been medically examined by the doctor used by the company. Finally, she rose to her feet, signifying the meeting was at an end. I rose, too, and followed the secretary from the room, fumbling in my pocket for my credit card.


  Left alone, with no further appointments that day, the two ladies discussed the arrangements they'd need to make for their three previous clients before talking about the problems associated with the obese young man who'd just departed. 'Two transvestites, one with C.P. and one without, for a fortnight, and a would-be dog,' Miss Briggs read from her notes. 'I've already fixed up the straight TV with Emily,' she added. 'And I was thinking about Dorothy for the C.P. fan.'

    'No good,' Mrs. Martin said. 'Dorothy's dungeon is in pieces, Alan told me. Try Sophia.'

    'I shall,' promised her secretary. 'Now, what about the dog? He wants a week, with a safe word.'

  Mrs. Martin pondered. 'There's three or four we know who can cater for dogs,' she said at last, reeling off their names. 'Try Sonia first; she's got a proper dog-run.'

    'Sonia is very expensive,' objected Miss Briggs, but her principal laughed and said it was all the better for their commission. Anyway, they could get a price and put it to their client. Then they turned their attention to the prospective customer who'd just left, assuming he passed the medical examination.

    'A cage,' suggested Miss Briggs. 'That would be much the easiest way.'

    'Hmm,' Mrs Martin replied thoughtfully. Then: 'What's the medically recommended weight loss per week?'

  Miss Briggs bent over her laptop, her fingers flying over the keys. 'Works out to a pound a day,' she said at last. 'And the minimum recommended area of a cage for a creature his size is 250 square feet. That's twenty feet by twelve, at least,' she added dolefully.

    'Out of the question!' Mrs. Martin said decisively. 'No one's got a cage anywhere near that big, and heating it would cost a fortune. Anyway,' she went on, 'it seems so wasteful keeping him for about three months and getting no benefit from his presence, if you see what I mean.'

  Miss Briggs understood at once and said so. 'Using him as a draught animal? Can't see it myself,' she said.

    'Nor can I,' Mrs. Martin admitted, thinking of the almost spherical young man who'd waddled from the office. 'But first let's find lodgings for him,' she said briskly. 'I suspect we'll have to look abroad; somewhere warm,' she added, looking out of the window at the February landscape. She set about her paperwork and Miss Briggs went back to her desk and busied herself with the laptop and the telephone. Returning towards the end of the afternoon, she was triumphant.

    'Crimson!' she announced. 'Crimson can cope with him. I've just finished talking to her; woke her from her siesta.' She giggled. 'I'd forgotten she's two hours in front us!'

  Mrs. Martin shared in her friends laughter, and remarked that 'Crimson' needed the money.

    'Of course, her place is too small for ponies even if we had that in mind for our client,' Miss Briggs said. 'I told her about finding him something useful to do for her, and she said she'd talk to Alan about it.'

  Mrs. Martin was cheered. 'Alan will think of something,' she said confidently. And Alan did, much faster than anyone anticipated.

  A retired mechanical engineer of vast experience, and a neighbour of 'Mistress Crimson,' as she was professionally known, he was a Gay Dominant, known to Exotic Holidays, who'd occasionally sent him clients interested in that sort of thing. Considerably wealthier than his neighbour, he often helped her financially by occasionally sending his gay clients to her dungeon and paying her for her time and that of the two slave-girls who lived with her. A man of infinite resource, he soon solved the problem of what extra benefit she could get from her prospective guest and how she could get it.

  The phone lines between England and the tiny Greek island where Crimson lived were busy for a period, and then, after their client's physical fitness had been established to the company's satisfaction, Miss Briggs was able to send him the good news.


  For what seemed an age I'd controlled my impatience. I'd heard nothing from Exotic Holidays, and had made no effort to contact them 'don't call us; we'll call you,' I'd been told, but when their proposal eventually came, along with the bill, I raised my eyebrows. Still, a thousand pounds a month for what amounted to a holiday of indefinite length (for I wouldn't be released until my Trainer was satisfied with the results of the imposed regime of restricted diet and exercise) wasn't too high, I supposed, and at least it would be spent somewhere warm. Anyway, Jim, whom I met again at the monthly Munch which had become a regular rendezvous for us told me the price wasn't too bad. 'These professional Dominants don't come cheap!' And so, at the end of March, I took a flight to Greece, as always having to pay extra for the necessary larger seat. Everything had been arranged, from being met at the airport, put up in an hotel, and being taken by sea to a tiny island port where a battered car driven by an English expatriate who told me his name was 'Alan' waited to take me to my destination.

  The village that had grown up around the port was soon left behind. Out in the sun-drenched open, I mopped my streaming face and commented on the heat. Alan grinned. 'It takes some getting used to,' he told me. 'But it's only 25 degrees now; it will hit 40 in the summer!'

  I looked at him askance; what would it be like so much hotter than now? 'I should have bought some thinner, lighter clothes,' I remarked.

  Alan slowed a little and gave me a look in which humour was tinged with pity. 'Oh, I shouldn't bother about clothes,' he said, a trifle evasively. Then, a mile or so of dusty track later, 'Haven't you been told you'll be exercised naked apart from a body-function monitor?'

  I looked at him in astonishment. 'No!' I said. 'But I can see the point of it,' I went on thoughtfully, for, truth to tell, the notion held a strange attraction I couldn't explain.

    'Well, you will be!' Alan laughed. 'Most of we English residents out here walk around nude all day apart from a thong. We have to keep up the national reputation for eccentricity with the locals!'

  We both laughed. The track wound onward, and the cottages at its side, never very frequent, grew sparser and sparser in number. We were climbing, I could tell that, but the heat seemed undiminished. I began to question Alan about my hostess, as yet known to me only as 'Mistress Crimson.'

  I knew enough about the strange world of BDSM by now to know she was a professional Dominant; they all seemed to be called 'Lady This' and 'Mistress That,'  and nearly all of them practised bondage and pain on their clients who must have enjoyed it by all accounts. But that was not for me, and I wished it to be understood. 'Is she a professional personal trainer?' I asked.

  Alan guffawed. 'Not a bit of it!' he replied cheerfully. 'But don't worry; the machine I've built for her will put you through your paces and keep you at it!'

  As he spoke, we breasted a rise and he pointed out a large house with a swimming pool far below. 'That's my place,' he said. 'Crimson lives a mile up the road...there; that farmhouse set back on the right behind the lemon trees.'

  As farmhouses go, it was more like a cottage, small, in poor repair, with shuttered windows in a yard bounded by walls of white-washed stone. We drove into the yard to be met by no one, and stopped outside the closed back door of the cottage opposite an open-fronted barn. 'Crimson and the girls are having their siesta,' Alan remarked as we alighted.

    'Does she have a lot personal training clients?' I asked, standing sweating in the hot sun, my bag in my hand.

  Alan seemed to consider. 'No, not really,' he replied at last. 'Don't worry about that; it's all automatic. Come on, let's go into the house.'

  It was cool inside, the yard-thick stone walls insulating us from the heat, and Alan drew two glasses of water from the pump over the sink and passed one to me. 'Nigel should be here,' he grumbled to himself as he drank. He raised his voice deliberately. 'Lazy little beast! I don't know why I keep him around, the cheeky pup!'

    'The Master returns!' The voice from further inside the house proved to be that of a youth who presented himself in the doorway, tanned brown as a berry and stark naked apart from the sandals on his shapely feet and a plain leather dog-collar around his slender neck. Alan paused in the act of removing his few garments. 'So there you are, he said. 'Where's your thong? You know Crimson doesn't like us wandering around entirely naked!'

   'Don't panic, Dad!' the boy replied cheekily. 'We'll be gone before she climbs out of her pit. I suppose this is her guest for the duration?' he went on, gazing at me with frank interest. 'Well,' he said to me. 'Don't just stand there; get your kit off!'

  Dazed, I obeyed; much less embarrassed than I expected owing to the other two being without clothing themselves.

The boy Nigel collected my clothes and took my bag into the interior of the house. 'I don't have any sandals,' I said to Alan. 'Oh, you won't need them,' he told me airily as Nigel returned. Alan stood. 'Got his gear?' he asked the youth, and the boy nodded. 'Collar and mitts,' he said cheerfully. 'All present and correct!' 'It's not a collar, its a body-function monitor,' Alan reproved him, but the boy laughed and said it would have fooled him.

  Monitor or not, it looked very like a collar to me, resembling nothing more than one of those expanding metal wrist-watch straps so popular in the '60's and '70's and like them, it fitted snugly on my skin when Alan, having stretched it out to its fullest extent, slipped it over my head and allowed it to contract around my neck. Stepping back, he held up a warning hand.

    'Don't, whatever you do, try to talk when you're wearing this,' he warned me. 'You don't need to know how it works, but it will hurt you if you attempt to speak.'

    'Yes,' the boy chimed in, his voice unwontedly serious for once. 'It will hurt very much. He tested it on me, of course. It's not so much a collar; more an instrument of torture,' he laughed. 'But now put out your hands.'

  I extended my arms, and Alan slipped what seemed like miniature boxing gloves over my hands, securing then around my wrists. 'To protect your hands,' he said, and Nigel's giggle earned him a minatory glare from his master.

  Outside, the sun struck hot on my pale, bare skin. About to mention the advisability of sun-blocker, I opened my mouth to speak. Then I closed it again, for our destination was obviously the barn. The glare in the yard made it difficult to see, but I was aware of passing a tall, circular structure as we entered the hot dimness. Conducted sharp right, I saw in front of me a narrow, upright wheel about twelve feet high and walled with thick steel mesh, and at its foot a low cage of the same material. 'Well, here we are!' Nigel said, stooping to lift up the sliding door of the cage. 'In you go,' he said cheerfully, turning to me.

  I hesitated, dazed by the speed of recent events. Then, somewhat reassured by Nigel's badly hidden mirth that gave rise to the thought that this was some sort of joke at my expense, I fell to my knees and entered the cage on all-fours, its deep layer of straw tickling the skin of my huge, sagging belly when I turned to watch from all-fours what my companions were doing.

  Alan had taken down a large sack of coarse paper from the stack on a pallet nearby. Now, having torn it open, he was tipping the contents into a metal tank fixed to the wall a few feet away. Nigel had left the barn, and now he returned staggering under the weight of a full bucket of water which, with the aid of his master, he poured into the tank. Another and another bucket of water followed, and I saw Alan step back with a look of satisfaction on his face. 'There!' I heard him say. 'All ready to go as soon as the freezer thermostat closes. Come on, Nigel. Let's go home. No need to dress if we go the back way.' And with that they were gone, driving off and leaving me to make as much sense of what was happening as I could.


  At a complete loss, I stood on all-fours in the cage wondering what was to happen next. There were no signs of life behind the shuttered windows of the house as I examined my prison. The cage was about four feet long, three feet wide, and the same in height, its floor thickly covered with straw that began to pack down under my weight as I moved about. The upward sliding door by which I'd entered was matched by another at the far end, and both were down and firmly closed by tiny bolts at the top, the only difference being that the bolts on the far door seemed to be electrically operated judging by the thin wires emerging from them. Close to the near door, a disturbingly phallic tube protruded, its end sealed by a large, bulbous plastic teat. The other end of the tube was connected to a flexible metal pipe running over the concrete floor of the barn and up into the bottom of the tank where Alan had deposited the contents of the paper sack. Its purpose was obviously to provide me with nourishment as required which meant, I realised, that the periods of exercise were likely to be lengthy. As to the nature of the exercise, that soon became obvious, too.

  Beyond the electrically operated door of the cage, only an inch away, was a similar door in the wire mesh side of the tall, narrow wheel supported by a steel axle six inches thick. The wheel, although only about thirty inches wide, was at least twelve feet tall, towering over me, its lower edge barely half an inch above the concrete floor. Its hub was absurdly wide in diameter, leaving only about three and half feet of clear space between it and the ribbed, rubber-floored rim, and the nature of the exercise intended for me became obvious. Sooner or later, when my trainer began the regime set out for me, I would somehow be made to enter the wheel and walk along it on all-fours like a hamster or a squirrel in a cage. But for how long? And how would I be persuaded to do this?

  Tired of standing on my hands and knees, I lay down on the prickly straw, my legs bent a little in the cramped space. But it was comfortable enough, and I began to wonder why Alan had abandoned me in the way he had. My trainer, 'Mistress Crimson,' was either absent or asleep in the farmhouse; why had I been confined so early and left with nothing to do? But perhaps Alan's instructions had been to prepare me for immediate training, and that would begin when Crimson came to me. But what had he meant by my training being largely automatic?

  Turning over, I looked out through the mesh at the end of the barn where there stood a large chest freezer at the side of a tall refrigerator. A petrol generator stood close by, neatly stacked fuel cans a little way further off. I surmised that this was the sole source of electricity for the premises, and wondered vaguely how they managed, for the generator seemed much too small to run more than the indispensable fridge and freezer, although a thin wire led from it up the wall and across the yard into the house. Bored, I fixed an absent gaze on the house, now almost in the shade, and drifted off into a sort of trance, watching the imperceptible movement of the shadows cast by the sun as it moved through the sky.

  I came to with a start some time later when one of the shutters over an upstairs window was opened from inside, banging against the wall as it was latched back. I caught sight of a pale figure which swiftly vanished, and a little later the door of the house opened and the figure, or another like it appeared and stood stretching and yawning in the doorway, a girl of about my own age, wearing a  simple sleeveless white dress of some thin material ending halfway down her shapely thighs, gilt sandals on her feet, and a steel collar around her neck.

  She came outside and opened the shutters over the windows on either side, letting light into what could only be the kitchen. Another shutter banged open above, and moments later another girl appeared, dark where the first was fair, and clad in the same manner. The dark girl, carrying a large glass pitcher, strolled over the yard towards the end of the barn where the fridge and freezer stood. Seeing she would pass within feet of me, I hastily closed my eyes to feign sleep, suddenly and uneasily aware of my own nakedness.

  Watching through slitted eyes, I saw her open the door of the fridge. It hid what she was doing from my sight, but I heard the crackle of ice cubes falling into the pitcher, and the gurgle of liquid from a bottle, and when she closed the door and left the barn, I could see that the pitcher was full. The other girl, meanwhile, had fetched glasses and was sitting at a wicker table in the shade of a colourful awning where her friend joined her and poured drinks for them both.

  I remained entirely still, puzzled by the reaction, or lack of reaction, of the girl who'd just passed and re-passed me. She must have seen me, surely, and I found myself flushing with embarrassment at the knowledge I was naked and in a cage. Grimly, I told myself I had to get used to that, at least whilst I was in this condition. Of course, in my intervals of freedom I'd be able to wear clothing, I thought. But now another person entered the scene, a full-grown woman in her thirties, taller and broader than the two girls, and dressed in a similar dress, this time of a bright red which matched her long dark hair and olive complexion. Her long neck was bare, and she, I thought at once, must be 'Mistress Crimson,' living up to her name in the matter of dress, and the others the slave-girls who lived with her permanently, although they showed little sign of servility as a drink was poured for her.

I continued to watch, still feigning sleep, and wondered desperately what I'd do when Crimson visited me as I expected she would at any moment. Indeed, a few moments later I was able to see all three women get to their feet and walk slowly towards me. Panicking, I squeezed my eyes tightly shut and 'played dead.'

  I could sense them, standing so close to my cage as to allow me to smell the summery scent of the soap they'd used recently. They were talking softly, and I strained my ears to listen, easily distinguishing the deeper voice of Crimson from the lighter ones of her slaves.

    'So he's here,' a contralto voice observed.

    'Alan must have brought him during siesta,' a soprano voice replied.

    'I wonder when Alan's contraption will put him to work?' Crimson mused.

    'When the temperature rises enough in the freezer, I think,' the other soprano speculated.

    'And it's also supposed to be when the battery levels fall enough to fire up the generator,' her Mistress replied. 'That's what he told me, anyway. The generator usually starts up about six; or earlier if we use the battery power to charge our laptops. In fact, girls,' she went on. 'We may as well plug in our laptops and charge them now, without waiting for the generator. We'll see if Alan's device works then!'

  The soft sounds of their sandals grew fainter, and I realised they'd left me. They'd only been there for five minutes, but it had felt like a lifetime, the mental image of myself as as as seen by them causing my face to become hot with embarrassment. Cautiously, I lifted my eyelids enough to see then take their seats at the table, and tried to make sense of what I'd heard.


  Time passed, and the shadows grew longer. The little gathering at the table broke up, both girls disappeared into the house, the dark one to re-emerge dressed in Tee shirt and jeans, and carrying a motorcycle helmet. She, after a word with her Mistress, came into the barn at the far end and wheeled out a battered scooter on which she set off, the waspish buzz of her engine fading into silence. Crimson, a tall drink at her elbow, sat on, reading a book and smoking a cigarette in a long holder. Not one of them took any notice of me whatever, and I became bored, and even a little resentful. Why on Earth, I asked myself, had I been confined like this for so long, ready to be exercised for an hour or so, and then ignored? It had been so unnecessary, as was being expected to train naked, come to that, and I would have a sharp word to say to Crimson when she came at last.

I wished she would come, if only to let me out to empty my uncomfortably full bladder before beginning the training session. The session, I thought, couldn't last long at this time in the afternoon; it would probably be a non too arduous spell, followed by dinner. But before the meal, I'd insist on a shower and clean clothes. Dinner, a few drinks (this was Greece; there was sure to be wine) and then bed, and I looked up at the row of windows of the upper storey, three with open shutters, and two with closed, and wondered which of the rooms behind them would be mine.

  Over at the table, Crimson stirred at last. Closing her book, she stood and went into the house, leaving the yard deserted. I waited a few minutes in case she returned, then took advantage of the solitude by urinating, trying to direct the jet through the mesh. But most of it soaked into the straw at the side, and I pushed dry straw over the damp patch before lying down again.

  Not many minutes later, I heard the buzz of the returning scooter. It came into the yard followed by a cloud of dust and was ridden into the barn where the dark girl alighted and carried a shopping bag into the house. No sooner had she vanished from my sight when her fair-haired colleague emerged and began to lay the table with plates, cutlery, glasses, and a big bowl of fruit. The dark girl, now clad in her white, sleeveless dress, came outside again and marched over the yard towards the fridges. As before, I feigned sleep and watched though slitted eyes as she opened the door of the fridge and took out a large bowl of salad, obviously prepared beforehand. Leaving the fridge door open, she fiddled about with the salad for a few moments before closing the door and taking the bowl to the table. Then I watched with anger and disbelief as all three sat down and began to eat. What about me? I thought resentfully. But, only a few minutes later, Alan's ingenuity bore fruit.

  I'd turned my head away in disappointment when I was suddenly transfixed by a lance of agony which came from nowhere. The agony repeated itself, causing me to rise to all-fours coincident with the hum of a motor and the rising in their runners of the cage door and the door in the wheel. The pain was now coming in a series of pulses, closer together and more acute with each passing moment. I saw their purpose at once; I was being encouraged to leave the cage and enter the wheel. I fled, noting en route the padded edges of the doorway put there to prevent me from bruising my bare skin as I negotiated the right-angle bend into the wheel. The wheel door slammed down, and I stood on all-fours, panting with reaction, the wheel trembling under my added weight.

  My mind working overtime, I guessed what was to happen. The pulses of pain, whose origin was my collar, had weakened when I obeyed, but now they doubled and trebled in intensity, and came thick and fast. The wheel trembled again in response to a loud click, and I guessed it was now free to rotate on its axle. With an inward groan, I began to walk up the slope of the wheel on all-fours, trapped between the hub and the floor, the pain-pulses driving me onward. The wheel began to rotate beneath me, bringing me downwards, and the pulses, which had diminished, regained their power, and now it was obvious to me how I was being forced to exercise. I increased my speed, and the pulses faded and stopped.

  It was awkward and uncomfortable walking on my knees and my mitts, despite the ribbed rubber which gave me traction. In the end, rather than use my knees, I changed to walking on the balls of my feet and my hands, which I found much easier. I wasn't being made to go very fast, I discovered after a few minutes, not was it particularly tiring. In fact, I had the time to glance over to the table where the women sat eating, apparently ignorant of my fate or indifferent, I thought bitterly. Still, it wasn't so bad, although boring, and it could hardly last long in the failing light. I hoped they'd saved me some food for when they released me, and wondered what other types of exercise Crimson had for me in the future.

  The women finished their leisurely meal and departed, the fair-haired girl clearing the table after them. I continued to trudge along my endless uphill path whilst the short Southern twilight turned to darkness. Lamps were lit in the house, oil lamps, I noticed, when the dark girl brought two of them outside and hung them over the table. Her colleague came out, too, bringing bottles of wine and glasses, and the their Mistress joined them. There they sat long into the warm darkness, sipping their wine, smoking cigarettes, and taking together in inaudible voices.


  Still I plodded on. I was getting tired now and the muscles of my upper arms, thighs and calves were protesting, as were those of my chest, stomach, and back. Suddenly, without warning, the wheel stopped dead, shaking on its bearings as the brake was applied with a loud click. Unable to climb any higher, I shuffled gratefully downward to stand on all-fours at the bottom of the wheel.

Overcome with relief, I waited for the door to slide up and give me access to the cage beyond, and I cast my gaze at the table, expecting one of the women to walk over and let me out. But they didn't move, if they even noticed, and nor did the door in the wheel open, and finally I lay curled up on the hard rubber floor, my eyes still fixed on the lamp-lit table and its occupants.

  After an interval, hope flared in me when I saw Crimson drain her glass and rise. But she didn't come to the barn, instead she entered the house and apparently went to bed, for I saw the lamp light behind the largest of the windows and go out again after a few minutes. Not long afterwards, the two girls also rose and went inside, taking the lamps, the bottles, and the glasses with them. The door closed, the lights in the kitchen went out and those behind the two adjoining upstairs windows came on. They remained on for five minutes or so, and were then extinguished, leaving the cottage in darkness. I was on all-fours, staring at the darkened bulk of the house in alarm. Surely I wasn't to be left in the wheel all night? But then the brake came off, the wheel trembled, and the familiar pain lanced through me again.

  How long this session lasted I'd no idea. I trudged on blindly through the darkness in terror of the agony from behind, my body aching with fatigue, my harsh panting the only sound in the still air. When the wheel stopped at last, and the door opened, I staggered gratefully into the cage in the weak light of an overhead lamp, and my first action was to go to the plastic teat on its pipe, take it into my mouth, and suck down the thin gruel it gave me until my stomach could take no more. Then I lay down and slept the sleep of the dead until, still in darkness, a shaft of agony woke me.

  Filled with disbelief and terror, I came hastily to all-fours. The weak light had come on again, showing me the open doors of the cage and the wheel, and pulses of pain drove me though them. Once in the wheel with the door locked behind me, I was back at my endless climb in seconds, driven on by the shafts of agony from my collar whenever I faltered or slowed.

  I don't know how I got through that unexpected second session in the early morning darkness. But it became the pattern of my life, and I learnt to endure them unthinkingly, my mind a blank. I learnt to fill my belly on being let back into my cage, and to fill it again before I left, and I learnt to ignore the inevitable results, the necessity of emptying my bowels and bladder wherever I happened to be at the time. The straw I slept upon became a urine-sodden morass of trodden-in excrement, and my loose droppings rolled about the floor of the wheel as it revolved, obliging me to lie down in the stinking mess during my ten minute rest breaks. The pattern of work and rest was irregular; roughly about four hours on and four off, but it varied an hour or so each side of this for some reason.            

  Although at first I was brought to the point of almost praying for death, I became used to my

new existence. Sometimes I even managed to take some notice of what was going on around me. The farm was often visited by Alan and his slave-boy, and also by several of Crimson's transvestite clients, all of whom came over, sooner or later, to inspect me trudging around the wheel or sprawled on the filthy straw of my cage in the sticky heat with the fat flies crawling over my dirt-caked, sweaty body. I paid them no attention; embarrassment and shame were things of the past.

  Once, but only once, I made the mistake of trying to talk, of trying to plead with one of the slave-girls for release. But even as I uttered the first syllable agony seized me, a pain even worse that the pulses which drove me up the slope of the wheel.

  As the days and nights passed, I wondered how my enforced regime was progressing. I could sense the fat melting from me to be replaced by muscle, and I came to believe that Alan had some way of monitoring my decreasing weight by the occasional remark he made to Crimson. But how well I was doing, I wasn't told, and after a short time I lost track of how long I'd been a slave to the Wheel.

My mind, dulled by endless drudgery, cleared gradually as my physical condition improved, making me capable again of coherent thought, but I shunned it, for all I could think about was when I'd be released from my animal existence. Also, with these longer periods of mental clarity, came a dreadful suspicion. 

  I was paying Crimson a thousand pounds a month for this torture. Since Mrs. Martin and I had been unsure how long my training would need, my payments had been arranged to be open-ended, requiring me to stop them on my return. But suppose I didn't return? Suppose I was prevented from returning? In short, what was to prevent Crimson keeping me indefinitely? Exotic Holidays wouldn't care as long as their commission was paid. In view of this, it was an ominous development when the slave-girls, gloved and masked, cleaned out my cage at last, wheeling away the filthy, dripping straw and replacing it with dry, fragrant stalks.

  Of Crimson herself I saw little, except in the distance. The whole affair, the combination of the wheel, the cage, and me was just a machine to her, a machine fuelled by the thin, gritty gruel made from the water and the sacks of coarse, dry cereal her slaves now and then emptied into the food tank. The machine's operation was automatic, its motive power provided by me, lashed on by the pain from my collar, a helpless animal in the trap I'd set for myself.

  As for the purpose of the machine, it took me a long time to discover it, but it seemed that, somehow, Alan had contrived to employ the weight of my continually falling body to power the freezer and the fridge in the corner of the barn


  It was mid-August, and Exotic Holidays was back in business on the return from the three week holiday of Mrs. Martin and Miss Briggs. There was a good deal of paperwork to clear up, which took them four days, and the welfare of those clients who were enjoying holidays arranged by them at that time was looked into. Miss Briggs, on examining the accounts, remarked to her employer that 'Fatty,' the young man they'd sent to Mistress Crimson,' was still transferring money each month to the bank account of the company, and Mrs. Martin came alert with a start of surprise.

    'You mean he's still there? But it's been nearly four months!' She sat in thought for a moment. 'Get me Crimson on the phone. No, better still, I'll talk to Alan.'

  Miss Briggs hesitated. The two women looked at each other, the same notion occurring to both. Finally, Mrs. Martin broke the guilty silence        . 'No, Briggs; it won't do,' she said heavily. 'We really can't just leave him there for the sake of our commission.'

  Alan, when they reached him, was evasive. But finally he admitted the training regime had been a great success, so much so, he added with embarrassment, that the desired weight and physical condition of Crimson's guest had been reached six weeks ago. When asked why, in that case, he or Crimson had not notified Exotic Holidays that their client was ready to be collected and brought home, Alan pleaded his friend's poverty. 'He really has saved her quite a lot of money for fuel,' he said earnestly. 'And God knows she could do with it! He's kept her fridge and freezer running all the time, and she hadn't had to fire up her generator more than a couple of times.'

    'All very well!' Mrs. Martin snapped. 'But he must be released at once! We shall have to make it up to him; refund part of his fees or something.'

    'No chance of getting any money back from Crimson,' Alan told her, laughing. 'But I have an idea; we, Nigel and I, can arrange for him to brought home in style.' And he went on to explain what he meant. 'Rodney won't mind,' Alan ended. 'He'll be here in five days in his yacht, his private jet parked on the mainland, and your client, suitably cleaned up, will be back in his flat in a week, rested and ready to resume his normal life,' he offered before making his farewells.

  Miss Briggs, who'd been listening on the extension, and Mrs. Martin were relieved at such a solution, particularly as it would involve no expense to the company.

  Back on the island in the Aegean, Alan swore, slipped into sandals and shorts, and drove up the hill to the remote farmhouse of his friend Crimson. She was devastated at his news, and so were her slave-girls, but there was nothing to be done. At least, Alan consoled her, she wouldn't have to pay anything back to Exotic Holidays to reimburse their client.

  He spent some time observing the dirt-caked figure trudging endlessly up the slope of the wheel and congratulating himself on his own ingenuity and engineering skill. Then he drove home where he removed his clothes and telephoned Rodney at his Surrey mansion.

  Some days later, with Nigel in attendance, Alan returned to the wheel he'd built to slide the needle of a hypodermic into a muscular thigh. The client, now deeply under the influence of a strong sedative mixed with a powerful 'date-rape' drug, was removed with the aid of the slave-girls and placed on a stretcher they helped to load into Alan's open-backed Land Rover. They drove home where the stretcher was unloaded and the helpless body washed and its matted, tangled hair cut and styled. Later, with Nigel protesting bitterly at having to wear clothing, the unconscious client was taken on the stretcher under cover of darkness to where Rodney's yacht lay in the harbour. The yacht weighed anchor for the mainland with Alan aboard, conscientiously determined to keep his end of the bargain with Exotic Holidays. Rodney stayed ashore to be driven back to Alan's mansion by Nigel. Rodney and the slave-boy were old acquaintances, and could be depended upon to entertain each other during Alan's absence.

  On reaching the mainland port, Alan had little difficulty in hiring a no questions asked private ambulance and transporting the client (whose name he never learnt) to the airport where he and the pilots of his private jet loaded the drugged body aboard. Alan gave a sigh of relief when the plane took off into the the early dawn and he rang Mrs Martin immediately with the news.

  So fast did the little jet fly that it out-paced the sun, and it was still really dawn when it landed on the private airfield belonging to the club of which Rodney was a member. Miss Briggs and Mrs. Martin were present to greet it, shivering in a cold far removed from the plane's departure point. They had arranged help and transport, and two hours later, after dismissing their helpers, they stood in the living room of the client's little flat looking down on him sprawled on the carpet in front of the lit gas fire. Whether by accident or design, the naked body lay with knees drawn up to fit the cage it had inhabited for so long.

    'Well,' said Mrs. Martin. 'That's that!'


  I woke unusually slowly and was aware of something wrong, being used to being lashed awake by the pain in my collar. It was cooler than I was used to, and the smells were different, the clean, soap-scented odours of the visitors to the Wheel which had occasionally reached my nose over the ripe smell of my body and the filthy straw of my cage. Those latter smells had gone, and I wasn't lying on straw, instead my flanks rested on something hard and flat. Wondering, I opened my eyes cautiously.

  It took some time to recognise what I saw around me, my vision made strange by there being no intervening wire mesh. But I was back in my flat, lying on the hearth rug before my own gas fire, turned full on. Groaning, I came unsteadily to all-fours, my hands feeling oddly naked and unprotected without the mitts. The close-linked metal collar was gone from my neck, and I blinked, unable to take the many changes that had taken place whilst I slept the sleep of exhaustion in my cage. I could feel the lithe strength of my body, and I took a hesitant step forward, expecting to collide with the unyielding mesh. But nothing happened, and it dawned on me that I was free to move about without restraint, a novel sensation. My tongue clove to my mouth with thirst, and I moved instinctively towards the kitchen where I knew there was water. Seconds later, I was peering helplessly up at the sink, high above and out of my reach until I remembered there was now nothing to prevent me standing upright.

  Dizzy, I stood swaying from side to side and steadying myself with a clenched hand on the sink until I remembered I could open my hands again, and it was a revelation to me to turn on the tap with my liberated fingers and fill a glass with water. Used to sucking on a plastic teat, at first I spilled a good deal of water when I tried to drink, but I soon relearned how to do it, as I relearned many things, all easy, everyday things which I'd been prevented from doing for so long. My thirst quenched, I made to relieve myself and dropped to all-fours. Then my memory came to my aid, and I stood up again and went into the bathroom. And then I went to my laptop and booted it into life.

  The date displayed was August the twelfth; I'd been living like an animal, kept in a cage and lashed into trudging around the wheel, for the past eighteen weeks. On an impulse, I went into the room in which I slept and stood before the large mirror at the foot of the bed.

  The face was my own, only thinner and a little haggard, but the body, lean and muscular with barely an ounce of fat, was that of a stranger, and of a very fit-looking stranger, too. So it had worked, I thought dazedly. I went back into the bathroom and stood on the scales. Eleven stone, six pounds: 160 pounds, I read, and apart from feeling hungry, I'd never felt better and more energetic in my life.

  Later in the day I went out into the familiar streets to buy food, smiling at myself when I recalled my initial attempt at leaving the flat when I'd turned back at the last moment, having forgotten I was naked, to put on some clothes. I felt uncomfortable wearing clothes; they were scratchy, and my feet felt cramped even in open-toed sandals. But I'd get used to it.

  Exotic Holidays, who'd looked after my affairs whilst I was otherwise engaged, had allowed my gym memberships to lapse, but that was easily undone. I took to working out on a regular basis, for the first time proud of my body and determined to keep it up to its present standard; I even began jogging! I continued to attend the regular Munches and to meet Jim there, and he was properly appreciative of the results of my ordeal.

  I often thought, in those next few months, of Mrs. Martin and Miss Briggs. Would I see them again? Would I want to make use of their services? Only time would tell!


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