|by Van ©2014|
|OUR STORY CONCLUDES
A few months ago, Cynthia had found the time to convert her basement sauna into a Tardis. That is, she'd tacked on a little trim and painted the exterior blue, added "POLICE PUBLIC CALL BOX" and other appropriate signage, and done everything she could to make the cedar box into a reasonable facsimile of Doctor Who's time machine and spaceship. Unfortunately, being a mere earthling and not a Gallifryan Time Lord, Cynthia's sauna was the same size on the inside as it was on the outside.
At the moment, Cynthia was inside the Tardis/sauna in question, together with her house guest, Dr. Janice Bell. Both were naked and shining with sweat. Janice picked up a plastic squirt-bottle of sports drink from the cedar bench and spritzed a swig of the fruity, electrolyte-rich liquid into her mouth. Cynthia only kept her sauna around 150° F (66° C), somewhat cool for a dry sauna, but it let her bask and sweat for longer periods. Not too long, of course, and Sally's sensors monitored the core temperatures of all "Tardis travelers," and she could turn off the heater, open the door, and flood the sauna with cool air in the event of an emergency.
Having seen to her own needs, Janice spritzed some sports drink into Cynthia's mouth. Her hostess' tan, diminutive form was comfortably reclined against her brown body. Their sweaty skin slipped and slid together as Cynthia squirmed for comfort and Janice leaned to the side to return the squirt-bottle to an insulated cooler. Janice had hydrated Cynthia as the lady of the house was in no condition to do it for herself. Janice was totally nude, but several square inches of Cynthia's flushed form were "clothed" in conditioned hemp rope.
In retrospect, Cynthia knew she'd been suckered. That morning at breakfast, the conversation had somehow turned to the topic of Western verses Eastern bondage techniques. Cynthia had argued for the aesthetic and functional superiority of Kinbaku or Shibari, while Janice had been pro American/European style rope-work. There was nothing wrong with a little friendly disagreement, but Janice had maneuvered the debate into a challenge, and made sure that she got to go first. Yes, Cynthia had been played, but she wasn't in the slightest bit angry. Cynthia had let herself get played. She'd also dutifully trooped down to her basement, removed her jeans, tank-top, bra, and panties, and let herself be bound hand and foot with conditioned hemp rope.
Cynthia's wrists were bound behind her back with her hands palm-to-palm, with neat, horizontal bands of rope binding her elbows a few inches apart, pinning her arms against her sides, and her legs together. Cinched bindings passed above and below her breasts, around her waist and forearms, around her thighs, above and below her knees, and around her ankles. In addition, a ladder-hitch of tight strands first yoked her shoulders, then traveled down her already helpless form, linking and reinforcing her bonds. No matter how she struggled or squirmed, there was no possibility that any element of her bondage would loosen or shift. Finally, and for no other reason other than pure bitchiness, Janice had used a length of hemp twine to bind Cynthia's toes together, all of her toes. And oh-by-the way, there was a crotch rope, a single, tight, vertical strand of knotted hemp that cleaved Cynthia's butt-cheeks and labia and linked the back of her waist bindings to the front.
There were no distinctly Eastern elements to Cynthia's predicament, no Hishi or Kikkou (diamond-hitch) aspects, no elaborate wrapping of excess rope, no florid knots, and everything was perfectly symmetrical. It was straightforward bondage. Elaborate, yes, but straightforward.
Cynthia executed the required courtesy struggle, then waited to see where her guest would take things.
"Sally," Janice announced to the otherwise empty basement, "would you please turn on the sauna? I'm curious to see if a little lubrication will help Dr. Webbel wiggle her way out of my ropes."
Cynthia had voiced no objections to a little overheated struggling, not that her opinion would have carried much weight at that point. Anyway, during the several minutes it took for the sauna to come up to temperature, she'd rolled on the concrete floor and explored her bonds. Ever the thoughtful house guest, Janice had gone back upstairs to clean up the kitchen. Finally, when the sauna was ready, Janice reappeared, removed her clothes, lifted Cynthia into her arms, and they entered the Tardis.
As might have been predicted, given Janice's obvious skill as a rigger, copious sweat hadn't helped Cynthia find her inner Houdini. Not yet, anyway.
"I'm glad Kiera decided to take Sally's offer and join the SIAS staff," Janice said. She was still embracing Cynthia's bound body from behind.
"Yes," Cynthia agreed. "Rachel and Kiera make a good team, and Kiera doesn't seem to have much interest in teaching." She looked back over her left shoulder and smiled at Janice. "You should join them."
"Maybe someday," Janice responded. "Unlike Dr. McFadden, I like teaching."
Janice smiled. "With Dr. Goodwin also at SIAS on a Salamandras post-doc," Janice continued, "that's more than enough brainpower for phase two of the SMAT project."
Cynthia nodded, then looked back at Janice, again. "Are you sure you can't stay in town any longer?"
"Sorry," Janice chuckled. "Unlike some tenured professors I know, a mere assistant prof like myself can't remain on sabbatical forever. I have departmental responsibilities. I'll keep an eye on the 'Girls of SIAS' via the Salamandras net, of course, like you."
"Being an academic fossil does have its advantages, I'll admit," Cynthia chuckled.
"And speaking of phase two," Janice said, "tell me about this Lillian Steele that Sally wants to scan before installing the new and improved DSM array."
Cynthia's smile faded (and a delicate frisson of delight rippled through her pussy). "Lillian Steele and Sally go way back. As near as I can tell, she was Salamandras International's first employee, hired even before I became a research associate." [Author's note: See Rage Against the Machine to learn what happened when Cynthia first met Lillian Steele.]
"Why do I get the feeling there's a lot more going on between you and Ms. Steele than you're willing to tell?" Janice purred.
"If you're still around when Lillian breezes into town," Cynthia muttered, "maybe you'll find out."
Janice smiled. "What about the others on Sally's list, the 'Rook House Rapscallions?'"
"You met the girls at the barbeque," Cynthia said. "J-Lou's charges at Rook House?"
"Yes, I remember the girls," Janice responded. "I was just wondering why Sally and J-Lou want to strap them down and scan their brains."
"You didn't notice her barely disguised glee when she read their names on Sally's list?" Janice chuckled. "It makes me wonder what kind of mischief goes on at Rook House."
Cynthia smiled. "Nothing non-consensual, I'm sure." Cynthia's eyes popped wide. "Oh!" Janice had reached around her body and was gently squeezing her breasts. The prisoner's smile returned. "And speaking of mischief..."
"Do you have more of the cord I used to bind your toes?" Janice whispered in Cynthia's right ear.
"To bind these delightful breasts, of course," Janice purred, then licked the side of Cynthia's neck.
Cynthia shivered and bit her lower lip as Janice toyed with her nipples. "I've been tied up for more than an hour," she noted. "I concede your point. In terms of functionality, Western and Eastern styles are equivalent. As for aesthetics..."
"Either style is an acquired taste," Janice stated, continuing to tease Cynthia's nipples, "but I'm not going to untie you. Stop whining or I'll give you something to whine about. Understand?"
"Yes, Mistress," Cynthia sighed. She was still smiling... and wiggling.
Cynthia heaved a tragic, long-suffering sigh. "Yes, I have more cord."
"I'll also need a ball-gag and a vibrator," Janice added. "Once I bind your breasts, they'll become very sensitive, especially when I do this." She gently dragged her nails across Cynthia's breasts, and the sweaty little captive gasped and tried to squirm away, without success. "You'll find it quite difficult to avoid screaming, and we don't want to alarm the neighbors, do we?"
"W-we can't stay in here," Cynthia gasped. "It's too hot."
"You're too hot," Janice chuckled. "We'll go up to the bedroom, soon. I assume you have some of that cord in your bedroom, along with a ball-gag and a vibrator or two?" Her prisoner didn't answer. She was busy wiggling and shivering. "Cynthia?"
"Yes," Cynthia admitted. "The bedside table... and the closet... and under the bed. Oh."
Janice was now squeezing Cynthia's left breast with one hand and tugging on her crotch rope with the other. "Soon, Cynthia," she whispered. "We'll go upstairs soon. You're not quite sweaty enough."
"Janice!" Cynthia sighed in complaint.
"Don't worry, Cynthia," Janice purred. "After I've made you cum a few times, I'll take out your gag and let you do me." Her hand slid from Cynthia's breast and traced the rope strands passing across her upper chest. "As for my ropes... they're staying on for a while." She squeezed Cynthia's left breast, again, and her captive shivered in distress... and arousal.
Meanwhile, at the Lair of Doctor J-Lou...
Doctor J-Lou Goodwin emerged from the shower. And she was a doctor, as the others had unanimously agreed that her wetware template had made only trivial changes to the final draft of her dissertation before submitting it for approval.
There had even been a graduation ceremony at the Temple of Salamandras, during which J-Lou was stripped naked, hooded, and presented with her diploma. Of course, on the wetware side, successful PhD candidates aren't usually stripped in front of the assembled student body, parents, and guests. Also, hooding traditionally takes the form of adding a doctoral stole or "hood" to their academic costume of scholar's robe and institutionally distinctive hat, and not lacing and buckling a tight leather helmet over the new PhD's head. Also, the sheepskin isn't folded and rolled around a bit-gag that is then buckled in the graduate's mouth. And finally, while a post-graduation party is traditional, it usually doesn't take the form of a full-blown bacchanal and orgy with repeated paddling of the graduate's naked behind and/or boinking her bound and naked body until dawn of the next day. But then, Lewis & Clark University has its traditions, and The Living Goddess Salamandras and her army of tall, beautiful amazons have theirs.
Anyway, J-Lou was in her Lair. Specifically, she was in the cozy bedroom of said lair, and was emerging from the shower. The modern, tastefully decorated bedroom looked out on the lagoon of the cluster of tropical islands that were her domain. And to be clear, her view of the turquoise water and coral reef was from twenty feet under the surface of the sea. The walls and ceiling of the bedroom were a dome of armored glass, inches thick.
The Lair itself was something like Tony Stark's modernistic seaside villa, with a combination living room, lounge, and party area, automated kitchen and housekeeping facilities, guest rooms, a futuristic laboratory, and balconies for lounging and sunbathing. Most of the "modest" complex was above sea level, but J-Lou's bedroom and all the guest rooms came with breathtaking underwater vistas.
Among the amenities of the island beyond the Lair were pristine sand beaches, hiking/jogging trails through the jungle, mountain pools fed by spectacular waterfalls, etc. J-Lou resided in magnificent solitude—but not total solitude.
A high-speed maglev train traveling in an undersea tube linked J-Lou's island to an inhabited archipelago a few miles over the horizon. Shopping, restaurants, nightclubs, and theaters were only minutes away, and the seafood was especially delicious. Also, there was a second inhabitant of J-Lou's paradise.
Across the lagoon, Tori Ballantine had her version of the perfect dream home. It took the form of a huge, rustic treehouse, or more properly, a cluster of treehouse rooms joined by rope and vine causeways. Close inspection revealed that the construction techniques employed in the creation of Tori's abode were quite sophisticated, with complex joinery, stainless steel brackets and fasteners, etc. Also, she had all the modern conveniences: indoor plumbing, an automated kitchen, etc. An elevator led to a subterranean people-mover that linked to J-Lou's tube station, but it was seldom used by the mistress of the treehouse. Tori wasn't about to live in a jungle girl's dream home and not act the part.
Tori also dressed the part. She had a wardrobe full of sophisticated clothing for all occasions, but her preferred daily costume was one of several string bikinis of purposely ragged, chamois-thin leather, usually in shades of sand, bark, or bronze, to compliment her blond hair and deeply tanned skin. She also wore leather bracers, an armlet of jade and tourmaline beads, and a necklace with more beads interspersed with animal fangs. Finally, she kept a wicked sheath knife strapped to her right thigh. A jungle girl treehouse required a jungle girl occupant.
Tori and J-Lou visited each other quite regularly, to borrow the occasional cup of sugar or, more often, to boink each others brains out. J-Lou used a futuristic water-bike to skim across the lagoon for her dinner date and/or bootie calls, but Tori usually just swam the distance.
J-Lou used a fluffy towel to dry her short, tan, shapely body, then switched to a second hi-tech, super-absorbent towel to dry her hair. A few drags of the comb and strokes of the brush and she was ready to dress. She pulled on a bandeau-top and very French-cut bikini bottom. Both were a shimmering, almost liquid black that looked something like latex, but the fabric was quite breathable. It was also quite stretchy and despite its skimpiness, was doing its best to protect its wearer's modesty. Prominent pokies were on display, as was a noticeable camel-toe, not to mention the overwhelming majority of J-Lou's smooth, firm, tan skin.
As J-Lou turned to leave the bedroom, she noticed something churning through the water overhead. It was Tori, resplendent in her jungle girl costume, scissor-kicking her way across the lagoon. As J-Lou watched, she bent at the waist, elevated her legs, plunged under the surface, and swam to a coral tunnel near the bedroom that camouflaged the airlock leading to the Lair's lower levels. There was a pause, then J-Lou heard the gurgle and hiss of the airlock cycling, followed by the drone of the air blowers in the antechamber. J-Lou smiled and turned to face her bedroom door as it hissed open.
Tori strolled across the threshold, still using one of the super-absorbent towels to dry her short hair. Her body and leather accessories were either already dry or soon would be.
"You're late," J-Lou accused. "I told you to arrive well before noon."
Tori tossed the towel away and pulled J-Lou into a tight embrace. "Don't tell me what to do, Short Stuff," she growled. "The dolphins wanted to play. Blame them for the delay."
J-Lou planted a kiss on her girlfriend's smiling lips, then broke her hold. More correctly, Tori allowed her to break her hold. The diminutive Brit strolled into the master bath, retrieved her hairbrush, and tossed it to her guest.
It only took a few strokes for Tori to enforce some degree of order on the shaggy mop that passed as her pageboy. She then tossed the brush on the bed and took J-Lou's hand. They exited the bedroom and padded up the stairs to ground level. They could have taken the elevator, but Tori liked to walk and J-Lou had no objections. They crossed the expansive main room, on their way to join J-Lou's other guests.
As already mentioned, J-Lou's Lair is starkly modernistic—as in Tony Stark-ly modernistic—and J-Lou herself had used that funny/punny description on more than one occasion. It was something like a series of horizontal disks of white concrete and glass haphazardly and/or tastefully arranged and tucked into and among the volcanic crags at one end of the island. Half of its windows and decks overlooked the open ocean and half the lagoon. J-Lou was thinking of repainting the exterior, breaking things up with a little color—cobalt-blue, Nile-green, desert-tan, etc.—but for now, the non-glass vertical elements were white and the horizontal surfaces of the decks and patios were paved in natural stone or teak.
It was all very sleek and tasteful, and J-Lou was very proud of the design (even though Sally's engineering and architectural expert systems had done all the work).
J-Lou and Tori walked out onto the largest lagoon deck to find their guests (and fellow programs) enjoying the sun. Cynthia and Janice were languidly sprawled on comfortable lounge chairs, working on their tans. Rachel and Kiera were also sunbathing, with Kiera on her stomach on a beach towel and Rachel kneeling at her side and rubbing lotion on her freckled, glistening back. Earlier, all four had been wearing string bikinis, but the four garments had been removed and were now draped over the backs or arms of various deckchairs.
Friendly salutations greeted the arrival of J-Lou and Tori. There was also a fifth guest on the deck, but she was unable to welcome J-Lou and Tori.
That guest was Sally. She was naked, like the others, and her skin glistened with lotion, also like the others; however, she was bound and gagged, very much not like the others.
Upon her arrival, Sally had been seized by the group and a very pretty tropical sundress and a pair of thong panties ripped from her struggling, thrashing body. Next, rope was applied. Cynthia did the rigging with the others controlling Sally's violent struggles until a sufficient quantity of conditioned hemp had tightened around her tall, svelte form that their services were no longer required. They then stepped back, found comfortable seats, and watched the show.
Staring daggers, chewing on a two-inch ball-gag, and growling noises what would no doubt have otherwise emerged from her plugged mouth as pithy and devastating witticisms, Sally was helpless to prevent Cynthia from turning her into a work of art. Tying the final knot, Cynthia stepped back and declaimed a title for her effort, in haiku form.
"Helpless, gagged, box-tied, frog-tied, hogtied;
Dangling in a spider's web of hemp;
Sally is first among equals."
Janice, Rachel, Kiera, and J-Lou applauded and Cynthia bowed. Then, J-Lou went below for a shower and to await the arrival of her girlfriend, and the others went to the bar to mix themselves drinks. As for Sally, she decided to hang around for a while.
It was Sally's only option, for she was, indeed, box-tied, frog-tied, and hogtied. Her arms were folded behind her back in the reverse-prayer variant of the box-tie. Her ankles were lashed to their respective upper thighs in a classic frog-tie. And finally, a cat's cradle of hemp linked her upper body and lower body bondage, pulling her into a spine-bending and back-arching hogtie. Ancillary ropes bound her fingers, hands, toes, and feet and linked the back of her gag and a bundled knot of her dark, medium-length hair to the other ropes. Finally, she was under the beams of a pergola off to one side of the deck and dangling in midair, suspended by dozens of vertical and diagonal strands of hemp. Rolling her eyes, wrinkling her nose, and flaring her nostrils were just about the only movements she found possible.
Also, Cynthia had inserted a thin, streamlined plug into her rear and a somewhat larger plug into her pussy before tying an elaborate crotch-harness to keep them in place. They were wireless, remotely controlled vibrators with 100-hour batteries, and at random intervals they'd been teasing and titillating Sally for the past hour. They weren't enough to bring her off, of course, but enough for her to wish that they would.
Oh-by-the-way, the Sally in question resembled a young Sigourney Weaver, as the actress appeared in her twenties, before she got the part of Ellen Ripley in Alien—and this had been a surprise to everyone but J-Lou, including Sally herself.
J-Lou went to the bar and mixed a pair of Blue Hawaiians. She handed one to Tori, then carried the second drink to the pergola, set it down on a convenient side-table, then untied the rope at the back of Sally's ball-gag, unbuckled the gag-strap, and plucked the two-inch rubber sphere from the captive's mouth. She then retrieved the glass, placed the straw in Sally's mouth, and held it while she drank.
"Thank you," Sally sighed.
"You're welcome," J-Lou replied, then sipped the straw, herself.
Sally politely waited for her hostess to swallow before continuing. "Threats of dire consequences, promises of cruel revenge, yadda yadda yadda."
"Duly noted," J-Lou giggled, then held the straw so Sally could drink, again. "Not too fast," she cautioned, "or you'll get brain freeze."
"It will go with my muscle cramps," Sally muttered after swallowing.
"Big baby," J-Lou teased. "You've only been hanging here a little more than an hour."
Sally rolled her eyes, then focused on her smiling hostess. "You promised you'd tell me how you pulled off the 'young Sally' trick."
"You asked right before Cynthia gagged you," J-Lou giggled.
"Before Cynthia gagged me," Sally agreed.
"I hacked the system and reset your cyber-DNA," she explained.
"No you didn't," Sally scoffed.
"Okay, I didn't," J-Lou admitted, "but what I did do was establish a dialogue with the gateway subsystem and request it dial back a few years on your Sigourney persona upon arrival. Since the system is, in essence, you, I suggest you put a complaint in the Salamandras International complaint box and let yourself know how you feel. That assumes there is a Salamandras International complaint box, of course."
"There is now," Sally huffed.
"Seriously?" J-Lou giggled. "It was a surprise?"
"As I've told you all," Sally sighed, "I'm a program, just like you. I may have granted myself a few special privileges, but I'm bound by the rules, just like you."
"Well, 'bound,' anyway," J-Lou purred.
Sally stared at her hostess for several heartbeats. "Well," she finally continued, "I can see we'll have to establish additional rules, regarding hacking. Also, once I get free, I'm going to bring down a world of hurt on your scrumptious little ass."
J-Lou smiled. "Tori?" she shouted across the deck.
"Yes, darling?" Tori replied.
"Vibrating nipple clamps!"
The blond grinned and winked at the others. "No thank you!"
J-Lou smiled and rolled her eyes. "Vibrating nipple clamps for Sally!"
Tori shrugged. "Why didn't you say so?" She spun on her bare heels and headed for the interior of the Lair, taking her drink with her.
Sally heaved a truly tragic sigh. "Dire consequences, cruel revenge, yadda yadda yadda."
J-Lou went up on her bare toes and kissed Sally's pouting lips. "I know. The moral of the story is, be careful what you wish for, cyber-girl. You just might get it."
The mini-sub was the size and shape of a Megaladon shark, and at a distance might even have been mistaken for a specimen of that long-extinct marine predator. However, in clear waters, any undersea creature or human diver foolish and suicidal enough to swim close for a detailed inspection would note the ducted propellers under the tail and the bank of viewing ports above the "shark's" snout.
The sub's only occupant was sprawled in a large chair positioned before the view-ports and banks of controls and instruments. The automated navigation system was doing the actual piloting, guiding the sub to its programmed destination. The captain and crew of one was in the chair simply because it was the sub's only furnishing, not counting a hammock that could be deployed for sleeping. Also, the chair was quite comfortable and, like now, could be adjusted for lounging.
The solitary submariner was nude and female. The costume she had selected for the next phase of her operation was hanging from a hanger off to one side. It was a reef-suit made of a very special material. Basically a skintight, long-sleeved, full-length, hooded leotard, it would protect its wearer from scraping her skin on any coral or sharp rocks she might encounter. Its thermal protection was minimal, but that wasn't a real issue in shallow, tropical waters. Other suits were available for deep diving.
The reef-suit's exterior was comprised of tens of thousands of tiny, lozenge-shaped patches. At the moment, they were all a dull, uniform gray, but in other environments they would form a mottled pattern appropriate to the immediate environment—blues and grays for underwater, different shades of tan on the beach, grays and browns in rocky terrain, dark and light shades of green in the jungle, etc. It was active camouflage, but designed to help its wearer blend in with her surroundings, not make her invisible.
Hanging next to the suit was a body harness incorporating several watertight pouches and a thigh-holster. The pouches held cable-ties and plasti-cuffs, panels of paper-backed gag-tape, compacted foam balls, coils of light cord, and sealed packets of pads soaked in a liquid anesthetic similar to chloroform, but without the unpleasant side effects. The holster held a compact tranquilizer pistol with a full load of tiny, quick-acting soporific darts. Next to the harness hung swim fins, a pair of gloves, a dive mask (with VRD), and a compact, hi-tech, self-contained underwater breathing apparatus.
The submariner and soon to be wearer of the suit and equipment was Lillian Steele, and she was on a mission. The powers-that-be, meaning top corporate management, had tasked her with the rescue and recovery of Sally Salamandras. Apparently, the tall, slender, and quite attractive brunette had gone to visit the tropical island retreat of one "Doctor J-Lou Goodwin," and had failed to return.
Doc J-Lou was an unknown, but Lillian had studied her file and was confident she wasn't a threat.
Tori Ballantine, on the other hand, was quite well known and was a threat. Lillian had worked with her on previous operations, and knew the blond had formidable armed and unarmed combat skills. That said, on this occasion, Lillian would have the advantage of complete surprise. The file on Doc J-Lou's "Lair" revealed that it had no defenses, hi-tech, lo-tech, or otherwise. The place was wide open. Lillian would be able to handle Tori Ballantine.
The only other unknown was Dr. Janice Bell, but she was an academic with no martial arts training. Handling Bell would be a piece of cake, a piece of delicious chocolate cake.
As for the others, Little Mouse, Red, Blue Eyes... Lillian smiled. They'd be no challenge whatsoever, and handling them would be a lot of fun.
Lillian had no doubt whatsoever she'd be able to recover Sally, drag her back to the sub, tuck her into the "Secure Transportation Module," and disappear, leaving the island's other inhabitants bound and gagged in various entertaining predicaments and unable to pursue or even track the departing sub. That said, Lillian Steele was a catch-and-release sort of predator. As a professional courtesy, Lillian would make sure Tori would be able to free herself, after a few hours of strenuous effort, of course. Tori would then be able to free the others.
Lillian turned her chair and smiled at the module in question. It resembled nothing so much as a streamlined coffin with life-support technology and a great many restraints waiting to secure its occupant in escape-proof security. There were entertainment features, as well, in the form of strategically placed foot-tickling, pussy-teasing, and breast-titillating vibrator arrays. Once the lid was closed and locked, boredom would be the least of the occupant's problems.
The sub was less than an hour from the island, and it was time for Lillian to start thinking about suiting-up. She stood, executed a full-body stretch with her arms raised and back arched, then paused, a smile curling her lips.
She leaned over the control console and opened the file on the transport module's specifications. Just as she'd hoped, there was a provision for two occupants, one atop the other with the subjects face-to-face, boob-to-boob, tummy-to-tummy, and thigh-to-thigh. And a simple series of commands could reconfigure the vibrators to entertain both transportees. It would be decidedly cramped inside the padded space, it was a close fit for one, but the trip would only last a few hours.
Lillian's smile broadened. As long as she was rescuing Sally, she might as well pick up a little something for herself.