BLACKMAIL: A Kat Derringer Adventure
Sheriff Kat Derringer looked about the crowded living room of her country house. Every member of her department staff was present: Deputies Ruby Hidalgo, Brianna Lockwood, her sister Lindy, and Red Thunder sat on the two couches while Deputy Marlon Galindo and Detective Rachel Gram sat in kitchen wooden chairs. All eyes were on Kat as she spoke.
“Thank you all for being here this early,” Kat began. She paused and sighed. “I’m afraid I have some news that will surprise some of you. Effective after today, I have decided to resign as Durango County Sheriff.”
Everyone except Lindy, who knew Kat’s intentions, reacted with awe and disbelief.
Kat continued, “Deputy Marlon Galindo will act as intern sheriff until my replacement is assigned.”
“Okay, what’s the deal?” Galindo asked. “We deserve the truth, sheriff.”
“Yes, you do,” Kat agreed. “I’m being blackmailed by Fortay and Bayless. They somehow obtained a police sting video that was made during my stint as a Palm City vice detective. It’s very . . . embarrassing. If it was made public it would ruin my reputation and credibility as county sheriff.”
“So they’re threatening to release this video if you don’t play their games?” Rachel asked.
Kat nodded. “Unfortunately, it’s no longer just about me. They have now involved you as well. That’s not fair to any of you. That’s why I’m resigning.”
“You don’t think we’re going to let you resign without a fight?” Galindo asked.
"I’ve already made my decision," Kat said.
"This isn't like you, sheriff," Brianna spoke up. "You're not a quitter, you're a fighter. I know you."
Kat shook her head. "There's nothing I or anyone can do about it."
"The hell there is," came a response from across the room.
Everyone turned to see former county sheriff Frank Bolander standing at the entrance leading from the hallway.
"I've been listening in on your meeting," Bolander said, stepping into the living room. He addressed Lindy and smiled knowingly. "Good morning, sweet cheeks."
"Stop calling me that," Lindy snapped, angry and embarrassed.
Everyone looked on with confusion.
Bolander walked up to Kat. "What kind of sheriff are you? You're going to let two scumbags run you out of office? In my day we dealt with these to morons like the criminals they are."
Bolander got Kat's attention and ire. "What do yo suggest I do?"
"You fight and win," Bolander replied.
“That’s your plan?” Kat said. “Fight and win?”
Bolander shook his head. “No, that’s the goal. Now we come up with a plan.”
“Great,” Kat said, unconvinced. “Before we go any further there’s one thing I need to discuss with my female staff first.”
Downtown Dorado City buzzed with excitement as the 50th annual chili cook off was well underway. It was a beautiful Saturday morning. A large crowd of people milled about among tents where contestants were preparing pots of chili in hopes of winning the grand prize and bragging rights until next year.
Then things got really interesting. Sheriff Kat Derringer and her staff showed up in their respective cars. It was no big deal, until they got out of their vehicles. At first no one seemed to notice but then gradually the crowd, especially the men, turned and stared.
Sheriff Kat Derringer and her female deputies were not dressed in their traditional or normal clothing. Instead, all the women were clad in strange outfits that some of the locals had never seen before. The women sported crisp button down white shirts with pockets that resembled airline pilots. Black shoulder pieces (epaulets) contrasted with the shirts. A checkered white and black tie hung from the their necks.
Above the knee black skirts, which were too short, with a black vinyl belt and silver buckle complimented the white shirts. Black seamed stockings and stiletto heels showcased their legs perfectly. The final touch was a stiff black bowler hat with a checkered band around the base and police badge at the front of the hat. They also carried a black baton.
Most of the crowd had no idea what was going on. Some even laughed.
“God, this is so embarrassing,” Detective Rachel Graham muttered to Kat.
“We all agreed to this,” Kat told Rachel. “It could have been worst.”
“How are you going to explain this?” Brianna asked Kat. “It’s not like it’s Halloween.”
“Don’t worry,” Kat replied. “I have an idea.”
By this point the crowd had gone silent, staring at Kat and her deputies decked out in the strange though sexy costumes. Kat cleared her throat and stepped forward, being careful not to stumble in her heels.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, if I can have your attention for a moment please.”
It was a cosmetic statement. The whole crowd already had their attention.
“As you can see we are all wearing the traditional English policewoman uniform,” Kat began. “This is our way of honoring our fellow female officers across the pond. We may look and act different, but we are all a sisterhood. Somewhere in England some British policewomen are wearing our uniforms today. It’s a uniform exchange program. Since this is a special occasion, it’ the perfect opportunity to display the gesture. Thank you all for coming and on with the cook-off.”
The crowd cheered and applauded, much to Kat’s relief. At least they were laughing with them, not at them. She rejoined her deputies.
“Kat, you are something else,” Lindy, Kat’s sister, said. “But damn it, this skirt is too damned short. They barely cover my stocking tops. How do you do it?”
“I can’t even bend over without showing my garters,” Ruby Hidalgo complained. “I think I got the shortest skirt in the box.”
“Just don’t bend over,” Lindy told Ruby. “And if you have to sit down, don’t cross your legs.”
“Great,” Ruby muttered, tugging at her skirt in an effort to pull it down.
Across the parking lot from the chili-cook off event, Deputies Marlon Galindo and Red Thunder sat in an unmarked car. Their duty was to stake out the scene and pounce on Bayless and Fortay if and when they showed up. But they were not alone. In the backseat sat former sheriff Hank Bolander.
“Hey, fellas,” Bolander said. “This could be a long wait. Let’s go and have a drink? What do you say?”
Red Thunder turned back to the older man. “Are you kidding?”
“Look, Geronimo,” Bolander said. “You people like the fire water more than the white man. I know.”
“What?” Red Thunder shot back, glaring at Bolander. “Listen you old goat . . .”
“Hey come on,” Galindo interrupted. He turned back to Bolander. “Sir, you’re here because Sheriff Derringer said it was okay. If you don’t want to be here then leave.”
“Alright,” Bolander said dismissively. “Take it easy. You can’t offend anyone these days.”
Red Thunder exhaled and turned forward. “How do we even know these two clowns are going to show up here? This can all be a distraction.”
“For what?” Galindo asked.
“Red Crow is right,” Bolander chimed in. “I have enough experience to see a distraction when I see one.” He stared at Kat her deputies dressed in the British police uniforms. “Although, they do have style. I give them that much.”
“Your point being?” Galindo asked.
“Think about this?” Bolander explained. “Why would they come to this lame event? To do what? No, they’re going to do something else here in town.”
“What can they possibly do in this town?” Red Thunder challenged.
Bolander thought for a moment. “There’s only one bank in this town, right? At least that was the case when I was sheriff.”
“That’s right,” Galindo confirmed.
“Are they opened today?”
“Until one o’clock,” Galindo replied. “But so what. What would they get by robbing the bank? It’s a small town bank.”
“You’re too young or dumb to know this,” Bolander explained. “See, all the well-to-do ranchers in this part keep their money in that bank. It’s in a safe no one knows about it. For security reasons. I bet they somehow learned about that.”
Red Thunder laughed. “We got Sherlock Holmes in the house.”
“Look, Red Elk,” Bolander told Red Thunder. “I have my--”
“It’s Red Thunder,” the Indian deputy shot back. “You call me anything else and we’re gonna have a problem. A big problem!”
Galindo shook his head and rolled his eyes. “Knock it off. You were saying?”
Bolander shook his head. “I have my instincts and I know I’m right on this one.”
“What should we do then?” Galindo asked.
“Send someone over to the bank.” Bolander advised. “Just as a stake out.”
Galindo shrugged and glanced at Red Thunder. “What do we have to loose?” He reached for his cell-phone and dialed Kat’s number.
Kat milled about the crowd at the chili-cook off. All her staff kept a constant look out for Fortay and Bayless. She had no idea what they planned but she was sure it involved her and her staff. Kat winced with discomfort. She never wore heels this high and it was beginning to take toll on her feet and legs.
Her cell-phone rang. It was Deputy Galindo. “What is it?” she answered. Kat listened as Galindo explained what Bolander had told him and Red Thunder. She thought for a moment. “Do think it’s worth looking into it?” she asked the deputy.
“Why not?” Galindo said over the phone. “I don’t think those two morons came here just to blackmail you.”
Kat had to decide what to do. What if Bolander was right? After another pause she finally said. “Alright, I’ll send Brianna over there.”
Galindo admonished Kat to tell Brianna to keep her distance and just observe so as not to tip off Bayless and Fortay, if in fact that was their plan. Kat agreed and ended the call. Now she had to tell Brianna.
At that moment, the organizer of the event stepped up to a stage under a tent. He spoke into a microphone, addressing the crowd. “Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the 50th annual Dorado City chili-cook off. As you can see the contestants are all ready at work, preparing their award winning chili. Only rules are: no store bought chili powder or canned chili. May the best chili win!”
Kat located Deputy Brianna nearby, clearly looking self conscious in her policewoman uniform. Kat felt bad for her female deputies for having to endure this ordeal. But they supported Kat and were willing to help her in anyway they could.
“Brianna!” Kat called out, waving her over.
Brianna made her way toward Kat. “What is it, sheriff?”
“I need you to go down to the Dorado City bank.”
“The bank?” Brianna asked, confused. “What for?”
Kat explained the situation to her deputy.
Brianna nodded with relief. “Anything to get out of here. This stupid costume is driving me nuts. Do British policewomen actually dress like this?”
“Of course not,” Kat said. “This is just Bayless and Fortay trying to have their fun at our expense.”
Back in the stake out car, Hank Bolander reached into the side pocket of his jacket and retrieved a whiskey flask. Galindo saw him in the rear view mirror and turned toward the former sheriff, staring at him with disbelief.
“What are you doing?” Galindo asked. “Put that thing away.”
“Come on,” Bolander said. “Don’t be a pantywaist.” Bolander took a swill from the flask and sighed with relief. He offered it to Galindo. “Want some?”
“Alright,” Galindo said with frustration. “That’s it. Get out of the car right now. I’ve had enough of this. I’m not babysitting anyone.”
“Fine,” Bolander said evenly. “Nice working with you.” He addressed Red Thunder, “And you too, Deputy Red Corn.”
Before Red Thunder could say anything Bolander opened the door and stepped out of the car. He didn’t appear angry or insulted and simply walked away. Red Thunder shook his head and sighed.
Back at the chili event, Kat made her way to a nearby tree and leaned against it. She sighed with relief, wishing she could sit down and relieve some of strain on her feet due to the high heels. She began to doubt Bayless or Fortay would show up here and expose themselves. It made too much sense.
Her cell phone rang again. Kat picked it up. This time there was no caller I.D. but she answered it anyway. “Sheriff Derringer,” she said.
“Good morning, sheriff,” came the familiar voice of Bayless. “How are you doing?”
Kat tensed. “Bayless,” she said, looking around. “Show yourselves you cowards.”
Bayless laughed. “Not a chance. Listen up, sheriff, you will come down to the Dorado City Bank right away. Fortay and I are inside the bank, and we have hostages. Don’t tell anyone and come alone or the hostages die.”
Before Kat could reply Bayless ended the call. Bolander had been right after all, Kat mused. This whole thing with the sleazy policewomen uniforms had all been nothing more than a ruse to give them some cheap thrills. Kat looked about the area. The crowd had grown in size and she didn’t see Lindy, Detective Rachel, or Ruby Hidalgo.
Kat knew she was probably walking into a trap but if what Bayless said was true she had to go to the bank and assess the situation. She did, after all, have Brianna as a look out and backup in case anything went down. Kat snuck away from the area and headed toward her trailblazer.
At the chili event, deputies Lindy and Ruby Hidalgo, along with Detective Rachel Graham stood together. They ignored the stares, cat-calls, and whistles from some men and talked among themselves.
“Where did Kat go?” Lindy asked. I’ve haven’t seen her in a while.
“You’re right. That’s weird. Why don’t you call her,” Rachel said.
Lindy pulled out her cell phone and dialed Kat’s number. No answer. Lindy lowered her phone and shook her head. All three women shared a look of concern.
“I’m not getting a good vibe here,” Ruby said. “That’s not like her. What should we do?”
“Let’s go talk to Deputy Galindo and Red Thunder,” said Rachel. “Maybe they know something.”
Deputy Brianna Lockwood arrived at the bank but didn’t notice any activity inside or outside the Dorado City Bank. She parked her car down the street and waited. She doubted this was a lead but was grateful to finally rest her feet. She slipped off her shoes and sighed with relief. How could any woman wear these things and be comfortable, she wondered.
She suddenly heard a thumping on the side of her car. She snapped her head toward the noise but saw nothing. She heard the thumping again. Brianna opened the door and stepped out of the car . . . only to be confronted by Bayless, who aimed a gun at her. He smiled with pleasure. Brianna gasped with surprise.
“Well, our first catch of the day,” Bayless said. He looked Brianna up and down. “Holy crap, you look hot in that uniform. Arrest me now, officer. I’m guilty.”
Brianna’s heart dropped. She had been ambushed yet again. “Bayless,” she said with contempt.
“That’s the name they gave me,” Bayless said proudly. “Now be a good little girl and go into the bank.” He waved the gun at her. “I think you already know where this is going.”
Kat arrived at the Dorado City bank, dreading what would happen next. But she had no choice in the matter. Her cell phone rang but she didn’t answer since she could not explain her whereabouts.
Might as well get it over with she thought, exiting her trailblazer. Her heels clicked crisply on the pavement as she walked to the bank. She was still an authority figure and walked with confidence. She stopped at the bank entrance, bracing herself for what was to come.
The glass door had a closed sign but she knew that was not the case. She summoned her resolve and courage and opened the door. Other than Brianna, she had no backup. She knew she was heading into a trap but would deal with it. Kat walked into the bank and was immediately confronted by Fortay and Bayless. She froze in her tracks. Fortay had a gun leveled at her. A sly grin was plastered on his face.
“Come and join the party, sheriff,” Fortay said, chuckling. He looked Kat up and down with appraisal. “That uniform is definitely you. Don’t you think so, Bayless?”
“Definitely,” Bayless agreed. “Although the skirt is a bit too long.”
“Alright, come closer,” Fortay told Kat, waving his gun at her.
Kat obeyed, looking about the bank. She spotted the three female bank employees. The women were securely bound and gagged with duct tape, sitting in their chairs behind the counter as if they were still working. Bands of duct tape covered their mouths and went around their heads. They were all in their thirties and fairly attractive. Desperate eyes displayed apprehension. They moaned and whimpered with fear.
They were securely taped down to their chairs with their arms behind their backs. Kat could see several bands of duct tape wrapped around their chests, above and below their breasts. She wondered if she would be next.
“Alright,” Fortay told Bayless. “Search her.”
Bayless stepped toward Kat, who had yet to say a word. What was the point? He walked behind a stoic and defiant Kat. She flinched slightly when Bayless placed his hands on her sides. He moved down her hips and thighs, groping and probing for any weapons or hidden objects. When he reached her lower legs he suddenly pulled up her skirt, exposing her stocking tops and garters. Kat gasped but remained silent.
“Just making sure you’re in full compliance of the uniform dress code,” Bayless told Kat.
He then took great pleasure in stroking and groping her legs, moving his hands between them. Kat felt his hands on her bare thighs above her stocking tops. She seethed with anger and humiliation but remained silent. If she spoke or reacted it would only entertain them. She knew this from previous experience.
Satisfied with his search, Bayless addressed Forty. “She’s clean.”
For no reason whatsoever he delivered a hard, almost vicious, swat to Kat’s backside. The blow resonated throughout the silent bank. Kat flinched and thrust her middle forward when she felt the unexpected sting on her rear-end. She closed her eyes, scowling with anger and pain.
“By the way, sheriff,” Fortay told Kat. “We have a surprise for you. This way. Behind the counter.”
Fortay motioned at Kat with the gun. He followed her behind the bank counter as Bayless locked the front door to ensure no one would come in. Kat’s eyes widened at the sight that greeted her. Deputy Brianna Lockwood was laying down on the floor, tightly bound and gagged (what else was new?).
Kat had never seen such stringent bondage, and she had seen and experienced her fair share of it. The hapless deputy, still sporting her British policewoman uniform, was cruelly bound with rope so tight that it literally cut into her limbs. Her arms were secured behind her back at her upper and lower elbows. Her wrists were tightly bound and secured with several bands of cord.
All the bindings had been applied three times. But that wasn’t all. The ropes on her upper arms were reinforced with several bindings which were attached to a rope harness on her upper body. Those ropes were wrapped around her upper body, above and below her breasts. Her legs were secured at the thighs, above and below her knees and ankles.
To further humiliate her, the back of Brianna’s short skirt had been deliberately pulled up before she had been tied up. Not only were her garters and stocking tops visible but so was her shapely rear. A pair of lacy white cheeky panties, which contrasted with the black garter belt and stockings didn’t offer much coverage.
Of course she was gagged. A tight cleave gag was cinched between her teeth. Brianna rolled on her side and looked up at Kat. The deputy was on the verge of tears, her face expressing pain and discomfort. A packing of some sort had also been packed into her mouth. Her bowler hat lay on the floor next to her head.
Kat could not contain her silence any longer. She turned toward Fortay. “Bastards!” she exclaimed, angrily. “You’re going to pay for this.”
Fortay laughed. “Yeah, okay. Now here’s the deal. You’re going to call all of your female staff down to the bank. Tell them not to tell anyone where they’re going or things will really get serious.”
“And if I don’t?” Kat reasserted herself.
Fortay shrugged. “I shoot one of the hostages until you do. Are were clear, sheriff?”
Kat sighed inwardly. That old game again. What could she do? With resignation, she pulled out her cell phone.
“We don’t know where she went,” Deputy Galindo told Rachel, Ruby, and Lindy. “I tried calling her but she didn’t answer.”
“Damn it,” Lindy exclaimed. “This isn’t good.”
“Where’s Brianna?” Rachel asked, looking around.
Red Thunder shrugged. “We don’t know.”
“What should we do now?” Galindo asked.
“Where’s Bolander?” Lindy asked. “I thought he was with you. Kat said it was okay. Don’t know why.”
“We asked him to leave,” Red Thunder replied.
Deputy Galindo took over. “Okay, here’s the plan. Red Thunder and me will stay here in case Bayless and Fortay show up, which I doubt. You can spread out and look for Sheriff Derringer and Brianna. Ask anyone if they saw anything.”
Rachel nodded. At the moment there was nothing else they could do. “Let’s all stay in contact,” she said, expressing concern.
As soon they walked away from Galindo and Red Thunder Lindy’s cell phone rang. She took out it of the white shirt front pocket. To her relief, it was Kat.
“Kat, where are you?” Lindy asked urgently.
“Down at the Dorado City Bank,” Kat replied. Before Lindy could ask anything else Kat said, “Listen, I need you, Rachel, and Ruby to come to the bank right now. It’s important.”
“The bank?” Lindy asked, confused. “What for?”
“Just get over here right now,” Kat told her sister sternly. “And don’t tell anyone.”
Lindy heard the click as Kat ended the call. She had no idea what was going on but the concern in her sister’s voice told her something was not right. She had to locate Rachel and Ruby. She glanced back toward Galindo and Red Thunder. Kat said not to tell anyone else but Lindy didn’t have a good feeling about this.
“Good job, sheriff,” Fortay told Kat. “Now, let’s get down to business.”
Fortay knelt next to a black duffel bag on the floor. Kat watched with dismay when he pulled out several lengths of white thin rope. She was about to be tied up . . . again. This is getting old, Kat thought, frustrated. What is it with men that only wan to tie me up?
“Should we make her strip first?” Bayless asked.
Fortay looked up at Kat. “No, I’m really digging the uniform. Always had a thing for old school British police women. Must be the hat, skirt, and stockings. I don’t know.”
Bayless shrugged. “Alright. Do your thing.”
“Okay, Sheriff Kat Derringer,” Fortay told Kat. “Get on your knees.”
Reluctantly, Kat obeyed. She went down on her knees on the bank carpeted floor. Fortay stepped and knelt behind her. He gathered Kat’s arms behind her back and grabbed a length of white cord. He wrapped several bands of rope around her wrists and tied them tight enough to make her flinch with discomfort. Kat remained silent and indifferent. She was done playing the “you-won’t-get-away-with-this” game. Fortay finished securing her wrists by applying three cinching loops between the bindings. He tied off the rope ends with two secure knots and pushed Kat on her side.
Kat fell over but didn’t resist or fight. What good would it do? Fortay gathered Kat’s stocking covered legs and picked up anther length of white cord. He expertly wrapped the rope around her ankles several times before adding three cinching loops between them.
Fortay then roughly gathered Kat’s legs and forced her up to a sitting position with her thighs against her waist. The short black skirt rode up, exposing her stocking tops and garters. This was also becoming too much of a habit, she thought. Maybe she should resort to wearing tights and pantyhose? Yeah, right. She was and would forever be a stockings woman.
Fortay picked up another long length of rope and wrapped it around Kat’s legs above her knees. He double-wrapped the cord several times around her thighs before adding several cinching loops between her legs. Kat winced with disgust and humiliation, feeling Fortay’s hands and fingers between her thighs.
Fortay did not stop there. He used another length of rope to secure Kat’s legs below her knees the same way he had bound her thighs. He took pleasure and delight in tightening the bonds extra tight. He stared at Kat with a taunting look and laughed under his breath. Kat remained silent and didn’t show any emotion.
“Alright, now for the best part,” Fortay said, reaching into his duffel bag for something. “The bank ladies were kind enough to . . . let us borrow their . . . knickers.” He glanced at Bayless. “Is that the right British word? Knickers means panties right?”
“Last I’ve heard,” Bayless replied, chuckling. “And fag means cigarette.”
Fortay shook his head. “Those Brits are something else.” He dangled two pairs of panties in front of Kat’s face. One was pink and lacy while the other looked like a Calvin Klein black thong. “Which one do you prefer, sheriff?”
Kat remained silent and stoic, glaring straight ahead.
Fortay shrugged. “Calving Klein it is then.”
He balled up the panties and forced them into Kat’s mouth. She closed her eyes and winced with anger but offered no resistance as Fortay jammed the panties into her mouth. Once that was done he reached for a roll of white adhesive tape. He peeled off the end, placed it between Kat’s opened mouth, and wrapped it around her head several times, making sure the tape went between her parted lips. The tape was tight enough to distort her face but that was the least of her concern. Kat was now thoroughly tightly tied up and gagged. Maybe it was time for a career change, she mused.
Detective Rachel Graham was the first of Kat’s staff who arrived at the Dorado City bank. Apart from a few parked cars outside there was no sign of activity. Rachel wondered what this was about? She was smart enough to realize something was wrong. She exited her car and pulled out her nine-millimeter pistol.
Although she was dressed in the ridiculous British policewoman outfit or costume, she had strapped her service weapon around her waist. She stumbled in her abnormally high high heels as she headed toward the bank entrance, poised and ready for anything. She thought about waiting for Ruby and Lindy but decided to take the initiative like she always did.
Rachel felt apprehensive and vulnerable when she entered the bank. Though there was a closed sign on the door it was unlocked. She immediately got a bad vibe. Something told her that her gun wouldn’t offer much security for what was to come.
She was right of course. When she stepped into the bank she froze on the spot. Bayless stood behind the counter where three female employees were thoroughly bound to their chairs and gagged with duct tape. The women were scared and desperate, their eyes expressing fear. They whimpered and sobbed softly. Bayless held a gun to one of the bank employees heads. Rachel looked around but saw no sign of Sheriff Derringer.
“Well, if it isn’t the tough and mighty Detective Graham,” Bayless chuckled. “Welcome to the party. Drop the gun or this lady gets it.”
Rachel noticed Fortay standing a few meters away, also holding a gun aimed at her. She heard faint grunting and moaning coming from behind the bank counter but couldn’t see where or from it was coming from. Here we go again, Rachel thought with resignation. She had no option but to drop her gun on the floor. Something told her she was about to be just as helpless as the bank employees.
“Where’s Sheriff Derringer?” Rachel asked. “What have you done with her?”
Bayless uttered a tight laugh. “You should already know. Come and see for yourself.”
He motioned Rachel towards the back of the bank counter with his gun. Rachel walked around the bank counter. Sure enough, she spotted Sheriff Derringer and Deputy Brianna Lockwood bound with rope and gagged. The two women looked up at the detective. Brianna seemed to be in a more dire state than Kat. Her ropes and gag were stringent and cruelly applied. Rachel could clearly see the strain and discomfort on the deputy’s face.
“Alright, Rachel,” Bayless taunted. “Let’s get you nice and secure.”
“What do you think?” Deputy Red Thunder asked Galindo.
The two male deputies were still sitting in their unmarked car, staking out the chili cook-off. They saw no sign of Sheriff Derringer or any of her female deputies. Something was amiss.
“This isn’t good,” Galindo told Red Thunder. “I wonder where Bolander went?”
“Who cares?” Red Thunder said dismissively. “That old drunk was getting on my nerves.”
“He’s got good instincts though,” said Galindo. “Maybe he’s right about the bank thing.”
“Maybe,” Red Thunder conceded. “But what if we leave and Bayless and Fortay show up here?”
Galindo nodded. “Let me try to get a hold of Rachel or Lindy. Find out where they’re at.”
Galindo pulled out his cell phone and dialed Rachel first. After a while there was no answer as her phone went to voice mail. He tried calling Lindy Derringer. Same result. That pretty much confirmed his concern.
“Damn it,” Galindo said. “I’m not going to sit here and do nothing. Go get your car and find sheriff Derringer or anyone else.”
Red Thunder nodded with agreement. “Let’s go.”
Lindy and Ruby arrived at the Dorado City bank. They noticed Rachel’s car parked on the street across the bank but saw no sign of the detective. Lindy’s heart sank when she spotted Kat’s trailblazer parked further down the street. Her phone rang a few minutes before. It was Deputy Galindo but her sister had instructed her not to tell anyone about their whereabouts or intentions so Lindy did not reply.
“I don’t like this,” Ruby said, her pretty face expressing suspicion and concern. “I think we’re walking into a trap.”
Lindy sighed. “What else can we do? We have to find Kat. Make sure she’s okay.”
“Sheriff Derringer can take care of herself,” Ruby said. “Don’t worry about that. No matter what she always gets her man or men.”
Lindy glanced at Ruby, admiring her confidence in Kat. But from previous experience Lindy knew that things were not okay. Fortay and Bayless were still on the loose and capable of doing anything they wanted. She had a feeling this was one of their moves in their black mailing scheme toward her sister.
“How do you want to proceed?” Ruby asked Lindy. “Should we go into the bank together or one at a time?”
Lindy exhaled. “We go in together. What does it matter if we go in separately?”
“Did you bring your gun?” Ruby asked.
Lindy shook her head. “What would be the point?”
“I guess you’re right,” Ruby conceded. “Let’s do this.”
Lindy and Ruby exited the car and walked toward the bank entrance.
“God, these heels are killing me,” Ruby complained. “And these stupid stockings keep coming undone.”
She stopped and hiked up her skirt. Lindy watched as Ruby reattached her left front garter to the dark stocking band around her thigh, grumbling with frustration.
“How on Earth did women ever wear these things?” Ruby said, shaking her head.
Lindy thought about Kat’s hosiery preference. “To each their own,” she said knowingly. “Like thongs. Did you ever think women would put a piece of fabric between their butt-cheeks and call it underwear?”
“That’s different,” Ruby said. “No more panty-lines.”
Lindy decided to the end the conversation there. “Here we go,” she said as they reached the entrance door of the bank.
Although the bank door had a closed sign Lindy knew it was just to keep the regular customers away. Not that there were a lot of customers at the moment. Almost everyone in town was at the chili-cook off. Small town life, she mused. It was perfectly fine with her. No need to live in a big city for drama and adventure. They had enough of it here.
Lindy and Ruby entered the bank confidently, ready for anything. Waiting for them was Bayless and Fortay. They each had a gun trained on the two deputies. Lindy was not surprised. She pretty much knew the routine.
“Our last catch of the day,” Bayless said. “You two look adorable in those uniforms.”
“You’re going down, Bayless,”Ruby said, “You’re nothing but a piece of--”
“Careful,” Bayless interrupted. “Now that the gang is all here let’s seal the deal and wrap this up.”
Fortay displayed a roll of duct tape. He tossed it in the air and stared at Lindy and Ruby. “Okay, ladies, let’s make the inventor of duct tape proud.”
Hank Bolander walked toward the Dorado City bank. Staggered was more accurate. The former Durango sheriff swayed from side to side. He should have gotten to the bank sooner but he stopped at a bar for a drink … or two … or three. He lost count after the third round. No matter, he was here and now.
He was ready to kick ass like the old days. He reflected on the past. Life was better back then. Criminals knew better than to do business in his county. He didn’t put up with none-sense. If someone got out of line he took care of it. The phone book was good persuasive material. It left no scars or marks. He chuckled at those memories.
“Son of a bitch,” Bolander said. He had forgotten his gun. Actually, he didn’t remember where he left it. Screw it, he thought. He had been a law enforcement officer most of his life and had extensive training to deal with low-life criminals.
Bolander entered the Dorado City bank confidently. He knew he was right about his hunch. Those two morons were going to rob the bank and make their escape. That uniform thing was nothing more than a ruse. Forty years of experience instilled a sixth sense that those two young punks at sheriff Derringer’s department could not grasp.
Bolander entered the bank casually, as if there was nothing wrong. Bayless and Fortay snapped to attention when they saw the old man staggering into the bank. They drew their guns but held back. Bolander asserted himself.
“Alright, you . . . dirt bags,” Bolander said. “You’re under arrest. Drop the guns and put your hands up.”
“What the hell is this crap?” Bayless asked.
Bayless shrugged. “Who cares.” He addressed Bolander. “Beat it, pops. Go back to the nursing home and have your apple sauce.”
“Apple sauce my ass,” Bolander countered. “You bastards are under arrest for bank robbery . . . and a bunch of other crap.We can do it the easy way or hard way. It’s up to you.”
Bayless sighed. “Are you freaking kidding me?”
“I’m . . . was sheriff Hank Bolander. This is my county.”
Bayless walked up to Bolander and delivered a solid punch to his chin. A cracking sound followed. Bolander collapsed to the floor, dazed and confused.
“Are you crazy?” Fortay asked Bayless. “What’s wrong with you? You just punched out an old man.”
“Whatever,” Bayless said, “Let’s get out of here.”
Fortay shrugged it off and looked at Kat and her staff. Rachel, Lindy, and Ruby lay on the ground, bound with duct tape. In addition to having their wrists bound behind their backs, their ankles, lower and upper knees were tightly secured with several bands of silver duct tape. More tape was wrapped around their chests, above and below their breasts.
They were gagged with bands of duct tape that went around their heads. Their mouths were packed with their panties. Bayless had a sharp pocket knife that he used to cut away their underwear. All the women had their skirts pulled up, revealing their garters and stocking tops. Why not?
It was a bondage fest. Kat and her female staff were all bound and gagged in one way or another. They were all dressed in British policewoman outfits, which only added to the stunning visual. It looked like someone’s idea of a fetish video or story. Kat wondered if she was the subject of someone’s reality?
“Okay, sheriff,” Fortay told Kat. “It’s time to part ways. Don’t you all look silly. Dressed in those outfits and bound and gagged. We have all the money in the bank, including the safe. I guess we win.”
Bayless chuckled. “This is easier than I thought.” He looked at Kat as she glared at him with disdain. “Till next time, sheriff. You’re doing a hell of job keeping Durango County safe from criminals like us.”
Fortay picked up a heavy duffel bag containing all the bank money. The two men walked out the door, leaving Kat and her female staff helpless and humiliated. Kat and all the other women squirmed and struggled, grunting and moaning with frustration. They rolled, rocked, and wiggled around the floor of the bank, to no avail. They were all securely bound and nothing was going to change that. Then a glimmer of hope dawned on the helpless women.
Hank Bolander slowly recovered from being knocked out. He shook his head and grabbed his jaw, wincing with pain. He spotted the three female bank employees bound to their chairs. Then it all came back to him. He had been sucker punched by one of those two scumbags. If only he was twenty years younger, Bolander thought.
He stood up on shaky legs and looked about the bank. Frantic grunting and moaning got his attention. It was coming from behind the counter. Bolander walked around the counter. What he saw stunned him. Sheriff Derringer and her entire female staff were bound and gagged, rolling and squirming on the floor. All the women looked up at him with desperate looks.
Bolander hesitated for a moment, taking in the view. Apart from being bound and gagged effectively all the women had their skirts pulled up around their waists or upper thighs. Their stockings tops, garters, and panties were on display. He focused on Kat. The angry county sheriff sported a pair of pink panties that didn’t quite cover her entire rear. She was straining and pulling at her bonds, glaring up at Bolander.
Bolander knew it was time for action. “Hold on, sheriff,” he said. “I got this.”
He knelt next to Kat and reached inside his cowboy boot. Bolander pulled out a folded knife and opened it. He sliced the ropes from Kat’s wrists, freeing her hands. He moved to the cords around her lower thighs and above her knees, cutting the ropes with a expert precision.
Kat reached up and unwrapped the tape from her mouth. It took some effort but she peeled the tape off her head. She ejected the panties that were stuffed in her mouth with disgust and relief. Bolander finished cutting her ankle cords.
“Thank you,” Kat said, exhaling. She rubbed her wrists but knew she had to act fast. She was not about to let Fortay and Bayless get away.
She stood and pulled down her short skirt, covering her garters and stocking tops. She had enough of this stupid costume. Kat pulled out her cell phone and speed dialed Deputy Galindo. She knew there was only two roads that led out of Dorado City.
Galindo answered the phone immediately. “Sheriff,” he said, relieved. “Where are you? What--”
“Listen,” Kat said urgently. “I want you and Red Thunder to block Apache Trail and Ballinger Road. Fortay and Bayless robbed the Dorado City bank and will try to make their escape.”
“You got it, sheriff,” Galindo said. “I’ll call and tell Red Thunder.”
Galindo hung up the phone. Kat knew she could count on him and Red Thunder. Now she had to go after Fortay and Bayless. She was not about to let those lowlifes tie her up and rob the town’s only bank.
“Release the others,” Kat told Bolander as she headed toward the entrance of the bank.
“I’m coming with you,” Bolander said. “I got some payback coming too.”
Kat sighed and rolled her eyes. She didn’t have time for this. Bolander tossed his knife toward Brianna. Kat walked out of the bank as Bolander followed her. At the moment she was stuck with him. She wondered if any other sheriffs had to deal with this nonsense?
Kat sighed once again sighed, struggling in her spiked heels. She thought about taking her shoes off but why ruin the uniform? She darted to her trailblazer with Bolander behind her. Hopefully, the old man would not get in the way.
Fortay and Bayless were almost home free. They had the loot from the secret vault, all 650,00 dollars, and had left Kat and her staff bound and gagged. What could go wrong? They got their answer. A car blocked their path. Bayless recognized the man who stood in front of the car with his gun drawn. Deputy Marlin Galindo.
“Damn it,” Bayless said. “What the hell!”
Galindo aimed the gun at Fortay and Bayless.
“Turn around,” Fortay said.
Bayless stopped the car and did a quick U-turn. He stepped on the gas and sped away from Galindo. He knew there was only one other way out of Dorado City.
“Where are you going?” Fortay asked.
“Ballinger Road,” Bayless relied. “I got this.”
“Famous last words,” Fortay said with doubt.
Kat raced through the Dorado City streets with Hank Bolander tagging along. The old man sat in the front seat. Kat shook her head when Bolander pulled out a whiskey flask and took a drink. Her cell phone rang. She picked up the phone and answered.
“Sheriff,” Deputy Galindo said. “I just cut off Fortay and Bayless at Apache Road. I think they’re headed toward Ballinger. Red Thunder is covering there.”
“Thanks, Marlon,” Kat replied.
Bolander turned toward Kat. “Marlon? Really.”
Kat scowled. “They’re headed toward Ballinger Road,” she said. “Red Thunder is there. Let’s cut them off.”
“I know a short cut,” Bolander offered. “Keep going straight and then cut through that field up ahead.”
“But that’s private property,” Kat said. “We can’t do that.”
“It’s an emergency,” Bolander said, taking another drink from his whiskey flask. “I know every inch of this town. Caught plenty of criminals that way.”
Kat pondered Bolander’s suggestion for a moment. What did she have to lose? She arrived at the open field and turned straight into it. The terrain was grassy but contained no obstacles or barriers. Kat stepped on the gas, urging the trailblazer on with authority.
“Crap!” Bolander exclaimed. “That wasn’t there before.”
He was referring to a barbed wire fence up ahead. It was too late to back out now, Kat mused. She plowed ahead, smashing through the fence. She would worry about compensation later.
“At a girl,” Bolander told Kat. “Now we’re getting somewhere.”
Kat gave the former sheriff a of look disapproval but said nothing. She kept driving until she came upon Castillo Road. Now she knew what Bolander was talking about. She stepped on the gas, determined to beat Bayless and Fortay before they reached Ballinger Road.
A few minutes later she arrived at Ballinger Road. Sure enough, she spotted Fortay and Bayless inside an old pick up truck. Kat cut them off, screeching the trailblazer in front of the road. The truck braked to avoid colliding with her trailblazer.
To Kat’s surprise, Bolander ducked down in the front seat. “Go get them,” he told Kat. “I’ll back you up.”
Kat had no idea what Bolander had in mind but she had a back-up plan. She reached under the seat of the trailblazer and pulled out a nine-millimeter pistol that was fully loaded. She threw open the trailblazer’s door and took a confident stance, poised and ready to confront Bayless and Fortay.
Fortay and Bayless, for their part, got out of their truck. They confronted Kat, but didn’t seem all that worried. Bayless expressed a tight lipped smile.
“Well, if it isn’t the bad and tough Durango County sheriff,” Bayless said. “I guess we didn’t tie you up good enough.”
Kat raised her gun at the two men. “Give yourselves up. It’s over.”
Fortay stepped forward. “Now why would we do that? It’s two against one.”
Kat shrugged. “I’m a good shot. I can nail you both before you try anything.”
“I think we’re about to find out,” Bayless said, staring at Kat.
At that moment Bolander snuck up behind Fortay and Bayless. He sprung into action. He slammed into Fortay, wrapping his arms around him. Fortay was caught off guard and went down, dropping his gun. Bayless turned toward Fortay with surprise.
That was all the distraction Kat needed. She made her move, darting toward Bayless. The former deputy turned but it was too late. Kat plowed into him, wrapping her arms around him, knocking him to the ground.
Bolander and Fortay wrestled on the road. The old sheriff was weak but scrappy. He got the advantage and sat on top of Fortay. He reached for Fortay’s gun and and trained it on his head.
“That’s as far as you go,” he told Fortay. “Unless you want to go the distance.”
Kat rolled off Bayless and located his discarded gun. She dived for the weapon and picked it up, taking aim at him. Her short black shirt had ridden up, exposing her stocking tops, garters, and panties. That was the least of her concerns.
“Hold it right there,” Kat told Bayless with authority.
Bolander looked up at Kat, enjoying the view. “I have to give the limeys credit. They know how to dress their police women.”
Kat became aware of her inappropriate stance. She rolled her eyes and sighed. She pulled down her skirt, covering her stocking tops and garters. She got off Bayless and stood over him, aiming the gun at him.
Bayless rolled onto his back. Despite the situation he took in the view with pleasure, looking up Kat’s skirt. The black stockings gave way to matching garters attached to dark stocking tops. Pink panties contrasted with the black garters and stockings but that only added to the over-all effect.
Kat noticed Bolander’s gawking. She exhaled and stepped away from Bayless, closing her legs. “Thank you, mister Bolander.”
“Don’t under estimate Sheriff Bolander,” Bolander said confidently. “I may be old but can still kick ass.”
He pulled out his whiskey flask and took a drink.
Kat shook her head and pulled out her cell phone. She dialed Deputy Galindo. It was finally over. And the best thing was, she and Bolander still had time to judge the chili-cook off. It was the simple pleasures in life that kept Kat going.
Two days later . . .
It was around midnight when Kat returned home to her ranch house. As usual, her sister Lindy was up waiting for her. Everything was settled and taken care off. The F.B.I had picked up Bayless and Fortay. Bank robbery was a federal crime and carried a stiff penalty. Fortay and Bayless were looking at 25 to 30 years in prison, which was fine with Kat. She had finally dealt with those two lowlifes once and for all.
“Kat?” Lindy exclaimed when Kat walked into the living room. “I was worried about you. Where have you been?”
“At the former sheriff’s poker card game,” Kat said proudly. “Bolander invited me.They hold it once a year. County sheriffs from the state were there. Of course I was the only woman there. What else is knew?”
“Well?” Lindy asked. “What happened?”
Kat reached inside her bra and pulled out a stack of money. “For the most part I say I won.” She tossed the money on the coffee table. Lindy gazed at the money. There were at least fifteen twenty dollar bills. “Wait, there’s more,” Kat declared.
She hiked up her skirt. As usual she was wearing nude colored stockings with a lacy white garter belt. Several twenty dollar bills were tucked inside her stocking tops. She had not taken a handbag and had to improvise. At first she felt a bit sleazy and self conscious but her card game winnings made up for that.
She could have just accepted the money in her hand but this was more gratifying. Kat tossed the money on the coffee, exhaling with satisfaction. At least she had given the former sheriffs quite a show, making their losing a bit more tolerable.
Lindy gathered the bills. “Wow, there must be over a thousand dollars here.”
“Oh, I almost forgot,” Kat said, reaching inside her white lacy panties. She pulled out another twenty dollar bill. “My lucky bill.”
She tossed it on the coffee table. Lindy shook her head. “That’s my sister, ladies and gentlemen.”
Kat expressed a tight lipped smile. “And they say crime doesn’t pay.”
THE END . . . FOR NOW.
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