The stretched-out nude looked down at Lady Fanshaw and noticed her aghast reaction to the mention of nipple clamps. “They do a -- ” Tami, unfamiliar with the vocabulary, searched for the word. “Sadomasochistic -- thing -- every Thursday.”
“They are not injuring you, I hope!” said Sir Gregory, opening his jacket to tug down at his vest, as if getting ready for a fight, powerless as he was.
“No . . . it’s just uncomfortable. I’ll live.” Then she looked down and said sharply, “It’s not like Mr. Sen-tai and his -- twisty -- ” She didn’t have to finish the thought. They studied Tami’s nipples, cringing at the thought of what they once endured, grateful that they were so resilient, as resilient as Tami herself. “And,” she added, her words dripping with insinuation, “I am happy to report that my -- rectum -- has not had any hot sauce in it recently.”
Donaldson refused to accept the implication that her sufferings had been her government’s fault. In his gruff voice, said to the rest of the delegation, “Miss Smithers is in a way used to -- what you see here. She had been subjected to situations like this for a long, long time. It had been a fact of her life at her college as a research subject, to the point where she had become used to that fact. That’s what made the arrangement . . . conscionable.” They knew that of course. This naked girl had been through more extreme things than this. They had read the accounts of the cruel, endless experiments at Chalfont, the wintry semesters walking barefoot through Vermont snow. And then this remarkable girl had made her way across her entire home country in the nude, while thinking the police were hunting for her, with no clothes, no shelter, no money, walking barefooted over mountains and deserts and swimming across rivers, equipped with nothing except her bare body and her wits.
Still, this scene was hard to look at.
Tami stared down at her fellow American. “I’ve never been in front of an international audience, though. Are you sure none of this is being videoed?”
Sir Gregory said, “The Chinese are far too astute to allow something like that to happen. This entire facility, like all Guanxi, is sub rosa.”
The officials had to move to the side so that a small clutch of dark-skinned gentlemen, having viewed the nude from the rear, could see Tami from the front. Their heads bobbed in front of the ruffling pubic hair as they took turns to inspect. Their low voices had a French accent. Possibly from Ivory Coast. Tami looked over dully at the line of coats hung up right in front of her as if to torture her, and then gazed up through the big window at the bright windy plain. Now the Africans withdrew and took their seats to the side, evidently waiting for an upcoming “demonstration”.
The appearance of one of the red-clad matrons up on the balcony drew their attention. She walked over to the windlass, and nodded to her partner on the other side. In coordination they cranked the windlasses. It took increasing effort as the ratchets clicked once, twice, and then finally a third time. The ropes creaked in their pulleys as they tautened and then vibrated, as if the whole apparatus, including the girl’s body, were a huge musical instrument being tuned up.
Tami Smithers was now further stretched. She gasped as her arms and legs were straightened to the limits of their elasticity. Her breasts jutted out further, the cold-stiffened nipples seeming to poke out like guns with which to destroy her enemies. Her labored breathing only emphasized the deepened concavity of her tummy, heaving in and out under her clearly defined ribs. Below, at their eye level, her pubic lips further separated as the doors to her dark feminine cave peeled apart.
The stretching, reminiscent of the legendary Rack of medieval times, concerned even Donaldson. “Miss Smithers -- that must hurt -- ”
“Not -- really,” she said between exhales.
“I don’t see the purpose of this,” Sir Gregory said, as if he was about to lodge a protest. Though it was doubtful he had permission to do so.
“It’s -- to make my -- ” Tami hesitated at saying the word and closed her eyes. “My -- orgasms -- stronger. If my muscles are all stretched out -- ”
Those who had read the Chalfont papers vaguely remembered a mention to this effect.
“A few are -- so strong -- they -- knock me out,” she said resignedly. Despite her distress she noticed their consternation. “Don’t -- worry. I set limits.”