Max took her hand and led her along the panelled corridor. Helen tried to control the growing sense of unease building in her belly as Max unlocked a heavy door and drew her inside. She swallowed hard, looking around the shadowy room as Max closed the door quietly behind them.
'Here, let me help you take off your clothes,' he whispered, stepping closer. She could feel his hot breath on her bare shoulders and shuddered.
'Max...' she began, wrapping her arms protectively round her body.
His voice was colder now, with a brittle edge. 'That was not a request, Helen. Come here.'
She felt a surge of fear, knowing that Max didn't intend to leave her until he had exacted his punishment. She whimpered nervously as his fingers struggled over the fastening of her dress. He worked slowly, his mouth pressing against her neck and spine. The touch of his hot wet lips on her naked skin made her quiver.
As the dress glided down over her chest she grabbed it, trying to cover herself. Max sighed. 'Let it fall,' he said very quietly. Looking down at the floor, hot tears welling up in her eyes, she let the fabric slide down between her fingers to the floor.
His hands cupped her small uptilted breasts. His touch was almost cold. He began to nip at the delicate buds. She gasped, afraid and at the same time astounded as her nipples hardened under his fingers. Deep inside she could feel her excitement stirring.
Self-consciously she stepped away. 'Please Max...' she whispered. 'I really can't do this. Please let me go.' She glanced at him, afraid to catch his eye in case her face betrayed the bright flares of excitement glowing inside her. 'I have to go,' she began again.
He ignored her voice; instead his eyes roamed across her breasts and slim figure with proprietorial pride. 'My God, you are so beautiful,' he hissed on an outward breath, drinking in her exposure. Helen blushed furiously, her hands instinctively lifting to cover her breasts.
'No, don't do that,' Max snapped, 'I want to look at you. Turn round. Slowly.'
Helen lowered her eyes, unable to deny him what he wanted. Flushing scarlet, she let her hands drop and began to turn round. As she did so, Max turned up the lamp. She could feel his eyes on her, travelling over her, down to the soft swell of her sex, outlined against the thin silk of her knickers. She felt like a trapped animal, desperately aware of her vulnerability and yet at the same time strangely excited. The paradox unnerved her.
'Come to me,' he whispered.
She bit her lip and moved closer, fighting the compelling instinct to run away. He slipped his fingers into the soft folds of her drawers, sliding them down over the swell of her hips. They slithered down over her thighs, gathering in a soft puddle round her feet. He took her hand and she stepped out of them.
'There,' he said. 'Now, that wasn't so bad, was it?' She looked up at him, trying to control her trembling body. He grinned. 'Why, Helen Garrison,' he said softly, 'I do believe you might actually be enjoying this.' She closed her eyes and bit her lip, horrified that he could detect the white-hot pulse of excitement amongst her fear and confusion.
'Don't fight what you feel,' he murmured, 'there is no shame in taking pleasure, Helen. Give yourself to me. Let me posses you.' His fingers traced the tight dark buds of her nipples, caressing her belly, her shoulders, as he circled round her like a tiger.
She swallowed a sob as she felt his eyes and fingers examining every part of her with great interest. It felt as if he were a collector and she was an exhibit. She gasped as his fingers closed over her sex and realised, with blinding clarity, that he saw her as another part of his exotic menagerie. She was just one more creature for him to observe and enjoy.
As he slid a finger inside her she whimpered. Inside the soft sensitive folds she knew she was still moist from Jack's lips and lovemaking.
Max grinned, wiping the juices over her thighs. 'You will really have to pay for all this excitement,' he purred. 'Here, let me have your hands.'
Helen held them out in front of her, lifting them slowly, desperately trying to keep them steady. Max slipped his hand into his pocket and produced a long leather strap.
Helen gasped, feeling a subtle mixture of fear and anticipation. The thought of being bound excited something deep inside her and - at the same time - the realisation shocked her. Instinctively, as he moved closer, she pulled away, fighting her own excitement as much as Max's intentions.
Far from annoying him, it seemed to delight Max more. His eyes sparkled as he grabbed her, holding her wrists tight in one hand, while with the other he started to loop the soft leather around them.
She struggled without thinking, feeling the strength of Max's body as he fought to hold on to her and the soft caress of the leather. She screamed out, dragging herself away from him, her breathing coming in ragged gasps. Max gritted his teeth, his expression grim and determined as he jerked her closer. She wriggled, pulling backwards and forwards against his grip on her.
Finally, he succeeded in sliding the loop of leather tight, binding her hands together at the wrist, then wrapping it around again and again until she was totally helpless. He looked across at her triumphantly, sensing her fear and also - she realised once again - her growing sense of arousal.
'There we are,' he said, panting from his exertions. 'Now you are truly mine. Truly free.'
'What do you mean?' she gasped. 'How can being tied up make me free?'
Max grabbed hold of the leather thong and dragged her into the centre of the room. He grinned. 'You shouldn't underestimate the freedom I'm giving you, Helen. You have no choice now. No control - you're free to enjoy what I have to give you.' He glanced up above her. Helen followed his eyes. Set into one of the ceiling beams was a large meat hook; beneath it stood a low solid wooden block.
She let out a thin high-pitched squeal. Her eyes were bright with terror as he grabbed her around the waist and lifted her onto the platform, dragging her arms above her head so that the hook slipped between the leather strap. The metal felt cold against her hot skin. Secured, standing on tiptoe, her shoulder muscles screamed out in protest.
Max stepped back to admire his new creature, his face reverting to an impassive mask. Only his eyes betrayed his excitement. He stepped away from her, slipping off his dinner jacket. 'My, my, aren't you a pretty sight?' he whispered, appreciatively. 'I can't imagine why I didn't see the possibilities in you before. You really are quite delightful.'
Helen jerked her hands against the hook. There was no way she could resist Max now. He grinned as she felt tears stinging her eyes. She was confused by the strange sense of elation and excitement her exposure and the bite of the leather lit in her belly.
She watched with peculiar fascination as Max undid the buttons of his shirt and slid it over his broad shoulders. His skin was lightly tanned, his strong muscular torso covered with a sprinkling of dark hair, belying his dissolute lifestyle. She swallowed hard; Max's body was magnificent and she knew then that she was lost. The subtle blend of fear and arousal was almost too much to understand. She shivered, unable to tear her eyes away from his body.
'You rather like what you see, don't you?' he said softly, stepping into the pool of light that surrounded the block. 'You can't deny it; I can see it in your eyes.'
Helen swallowed again, embarrassed that her face so easily betrayed her. She struggled to retain composure.
Max stroked her naked skin, touching her breasts, circling her flat stomach. She shivered as he knelt in front of her, his fingers running over the swell of her calves, moving across her thighs. She closed her eyes and finally let the sensations take her completely; the compulsion to surrender to Max's caresses was overwhelming.
Max Garrison smiled as he felt Helen's body relax beneath his fingertips. He drank in the heady possibilities of her willing surrender. She truly was a surprise. Her blue eyes had betrayed her fear and, yes, the unmistakable signs of excitement. How delicious.
She was still wearing her stockings, tied tight around her slender thighs with little blue lacy garters. He pressed his lips to the frills, thinking about the tableau in the laundry room with the tinker, when she had been similarly dressed. The constriction of her pale flesh delighted him and, below, those little high-heeled boots. He sighed, and wondered how it was he had not recognised her appeal before. He lifted her feet, one at time, slipping off the boots, pleased that he had left the little leg chains beside the block.
She did not resist him as he slipped the restraints round her ankles. Carefully he adjusted the block so that she was resting on the balls of her feet. No need, he thought to himself with amusement, for her to be too uncomfortable. Secured either side of the plinth, the chains held her legs apart, giving him free access to her body - a delightful thought.
Beneath his fingers he could sense the delicate tremors of her fear; her breath was shallow and expectant. She was excited by his ministrations, however much she tried to hide it - and he would take the greatest of delight in showing her the pleasures that lay ahead. Kneeling between her legs he could smell the heady ocean musk of her sex. Clinging to the dark shiny hairs around her quim were tiny beads of creamy moisture. He lifted his fingers to caress her there, opening the heavy outer lips to reveal the moist pink folds within.
He was charmed that his caresses should follow so close after those of the unknown tinker. He planted a single moist kiss at the junction of her lips, just letting his tongue slide for a split second between them. She tasted divine.
Above him, Helen jerked against the ties, a thin silvery moan trickling from between those plump pink lips as he found her clitoris. Her eyes were closed, her face wearing the same ecstatic expression he had seen in the laundry room.
He sighed sadly. He may be a cad but he drew the line at making love to his brother's wife - however great the temptation - and Helen really was a temptation. But there were other things he could do to her. Things that would show her who was truly the master of Garrison Hall, things that would ensure that instead of turning her attentions to strangers, she restricted her games to those in his circle.
He could imagine her with Bracken, and then there was the peer downstairs in the dining-room with the blonde woman and, of course, there were the others. He smiled at this new turn of events. Even if he couldn't allow himself to enjoy her hot eager little body he could certainly benefit from her obligation to him in other ways. First though, he would punish her for the scintillating little misdemeanour with the tinker; she had to know what was acceptable sport.
He pushed himself to his feet, tearing his concentration away from the temptation of her gaping and engorged sex, and picked up his dinner jacket. Inside one pocket was a large paisley handkerchief. Much as he wanted to watch her face he thought it would add another little frisson to the proceedings if his little sister-in-law were blindfolded.
She whimpered when he stepped up beside her and slipped the cloth over her eyes and struggled deliciously against her restraints. Each twist revealed another delicate secret place. Her little rounded breasts were flushed and swollen, her nipples dark and erect. Oh yes, he could find a lot of ways to enjoy her for a very long time to come and he sensed - despite her struggles - that she might well enjoy the obligation of being at his beck and call.
Slowly he stepped across the room and poured himself a drink. It would do her good to wait. Helen strained against the leather ties. He smiled - this really was going to be very enjoyable. Sipping his drink, he opened one of the cupboards in the room. Inside were a selection of whips and riding crops. He let his fingers stroke each one speculatively; most were old friends. Best, he thought, if he chose something light and delicate. He didn't want to hurt Helen too much, just to teach her a lesson she wouldn't forget. Besides, what would she tell Charlie if he left her bruised?
He selected an old favourite, something he had bought when he'd first married Liddy. He grinned - it was ironic that he should break both of them in with the same whip. He flexed it gently. Its end was split into chamois strands, so soft to touch that it almost tickled as he ran his fingers through it, but oh, how it stung when used in the right way.
He stepped back to the block and the enticing image of the bound, blindfolded Helen. She stood very still, trying to listen to him, her whole body tense and knotted. Between her breasts he could see a light gloss of perspiration rising.
As he let the end of the whip trail across the pert upturned peaks of her nipples, she gasped. Her whole body seemed to concentrate on its soft teasing caress. He let it trail around her. He stroked it across her waist, around her hips, down over the swell of her sex, walking around her as he did so, relishing her reactions as she tried to work out what the touch was.
Could she guess? He thought not. As he stepped behind her she suddenly began to struggle, desperately trying to turn around. It was as if she thought facing him would let her see what he was planning.
For an instant it seemed as if her body relaxed. In that split second Max drew the end of the whip back and flicked it around in a sharp tight arc, landing the first blow squarely on Helen's ripe rounded buttocks. She let out a strangled scream of terror and pain, her body thrashing around as he laid the head of the whip back for the second stroke. Her body jerked forward, exposing the open moist lips of her quim, pink and soft above the tight puckered closure of her backside. Max licked his lips and brought the whip down again.