Author’s note: While this story is true, names and some details have been fudged so nobody gets IDed!
My friend David was a toned soccer player who sat behind me in language class in high school. He always liked to wear tight t-shirts and khaki shorts, of which I definitely approved. We struck up a friendship because we both liked Goldeneye (totally dating myself here) and played against each other a lot. We’d started to do some sleepovers so we could play video games late into the night when I mentioned getting tied up the previous year at a sleepover as a challenge. I boasted (truthfully) that I was quite good at escaping and had only been “caught” twice before. He said he’d be up to the challenge and we should do it at the next sleepover.
That next Friday, we met up near his house on our bikes, the sun already going down. David was wearing his usual khaki shorts and t-shirt and I was in some soccer shorts and a t-shirt of my own. His t-shirt was olive green with some fishing supply logo on it that I fail to remember that was darker than his non-cargo khaki shorts. I recall liking the contrast between the casual t-shirt and preppier shorts. My own outfit was one of my white marching band t-shirts I wore all the time and my shorts were black Nike soccer shorts with subtle white stripes down the sides and around the legs. They were quite popular with all the soccer clubs so I was used to seeing other kids wearing them at school as well. We both had on sneakers with ankle socks too, which was pretty normal warm summer wear for teens.
There’d been a new house going up down the street from his, so we decided we’d check it out since they had the floors in but the doors and drywall and such were still not installed. This was fairly common for kids to do since the town was growing fast and there were houses under construction everywhere.
We put our bikes in the entryway and played the game of trying to guess where the different rooms would go, since only studs were up. After playing around a bit, David pulled me upstairs into one of the future bedrooms. Then I noticed that he’d done some planning. “It’s time for your challenge,” he said, indicating a milk crate on the floor.
The plastic crate contained more rope than I was used to seeing, along with a roll of duct tape. “Here’s my game,” he said, “I tie you, you get half an hour to escape, and if you fail you lose your shirt and I tie you again. If you fail another time then you lose your shoes. If you lose your shoes, then you don’t get out until morning because I’ll tie you a way you definitely can’t get out of.”
“What’s the tape for?” I asked, “It’s not fair if you use that to tape me up.”
“That’s just to keep you from being able to change your mind later and asking to be let out,” he said, pulling his scout neckerchief from his pocket, “It’ll keep this in your mouth so you can’t say anything.”
I was nervous, but definitely excited as I agreed to his terms. I’d never been gagged before, but he seemed to know how to do it effectively since I knew from trying alone at home that a simple strip of tape or cloth over the mouth never actually did anything. He hadn’t said he was a scout, but I should have figured with all the rope and his confidence in the challenge. He must have done tie-up games at his scout camps the previous summer. David turned over the crate, dumping out the lengths of rope and the roll of tape onto the wooden floor. “Stand on the box,” he said, indicating the crate on the floor.
I walked forward and stepped up onto the box, wondering what use there’d be for that. David pulled my wrists in front of me and began wrapping them parallel with rope. He wraped several feet of rope, going about halfway to my elbows before then wrapping in between my arms around the rope. He pulled tight and knotted the rope off right between my wrists, leaving about 4 feet of length hanging from my wrists. I noticed that he’d wrapped from the rope’s middle, so both ends of the rope were hanging off. David then did a similar tie to my ankles, but left no length there, using all the rope to secure them together. He then wrapped rope around my legs right above my knees (just below where my soccer shorts were hanging) and below my knees to secure them together there as well.
I was wondering what David’s plan would be, since I could easily reach the knots binding my wrists and would eventually be able to get that rope off. “Last chance,” David said, holding his red neckerchief in one hand and duct tape in the other.
“I got this,” I replied with a smile, “I think you’ve gone too easy on me.”
David promptly reached up and stuffed the neckerchief into my mouth. I really couldn’t say anything with all that cloth in there. He then pulled some duct tape away from the roll but didn’t tear it. Instead he started on my cheek and walked around me, wrapping my head as he went. He must have wrapped five or six times by the time he tore off the tape and slapped it sealed on my cheek. I really wasn’t spitting that cloth out at all!
I started working on the knots binding my wrists, but David grabbed the rope ends. “I never said I was finished!” he exclaimed, an evil grin on his face.
David tossed the rope ends overhead. I followed them with my eyes and watched with a sinking feeling in my stomach as they went over an exposed horizontal beam above. So that’s why he’d left so much extra length! David then got up onto the box with me and yanked the rope, pulling my hands up over my head. He reached up high and tied the rope off, then took the remaining couple feet and tied it to an adjacent beam that I likely wasn’t going to reach at all. “That’s better,” he said, “Now for the last touch!”
David got down onto the floor and grabbed the box I was standing on. He started sliding it, and at first I went along. Soon, the rope around my wrists forced me to lean back. Soon after that, my feet were unable to keep contact with the box at all. I swung back as the rope pulled tight and my shoes hit the floor. I could still stand, but all the play I’d had in my arms was gone. I found that I could get a tiny bit of slack if I stood up on my tip toes, but the rope’s final knots overhead were 100% out of my reach in any case. I couldn’t move over to get under the place where they were and I couldn’t get any looseness in my wrist ropes without untying those first.
I looked down and made eye contact with David. His grin said it all: he’d done this before and he was good at it. “You know, the other guys in my troop lost to me a lot this summer,” he said, “But you still have half an hour to try and get out.”
I moaned in the gag and tried squirming my hands out of the rope, but it was too tight. David came up to me and touched my sides. I jerked back but couldn’t go very far as David started tickling me. “I never said I wouldn’t try to distract you,” he said, laughing.