tagNovels and NovellasThe Pledge Mistress Ch. 34

The Pledge Mistress Ch. 34

bycaligula97236©

Chapter 34 -- Pledge Brittany

The following week marked a subtle, but significant change in the relationship between Lisa and Kathleen. What went on between them had to be conducted out of sight of Tracy and the other pledges, but the two lovers understood that Lisa now was in charge of Kathleen's life. Kathleen's eagerness to please Lisa and make up for the incident at Burnside's party forced her to ask permission before doing anything. In subtle ways Lisa let her lover know that asking permission to do even the most routine things was what she would expect for the future. As for sex, that would be on Lisa's terms, although both lovers understood that Lisa had an obligation to satisfy Kathleen's needs as much as Kathleen had an obligation to obey Lisa.

Another part of the understanding between the two women was Kathleen's eventual punishment. It was very unlikely that Lisa would have the opportunity to punish Kathleen prior to swearing in, but that delay did not mean the punishment wasn't going to happen or that its severity would be reduced. Every so often Lisa dropped a reminder about the upcoming chastisement, or patted Kathleen's bottom to let her know that she had not forgotten.

At that point Lisa still did not know that her lover had cheated with Ken. Had she known that detail, she would have realized that she was very close to her fulfilling her fantasy about the two most important people in her life. What she did notice, when she caught fleeting glimpses of him, was that Ken's behavior was somewhat nervous and that he seemed uneasy about something. As soon as she had a chance to be alone with him, she would have to find out what was bothering him. However, as the summer semester began drawing to a close and the pressure of finals intensified, Lisa knew that her chances to talk to Ken alone were greatly diminished.

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The week after the "Skins and Shirts Ball" was even less pleasant than the week that preceded the dance. The pressure was on to study, prepare for the pre-swearing in PT test, and memorize the rules, history, and traditions of the Four-Beta Sorority. Before swearing in, the pledges would have to formally present their grades to President Alexandra to prove they were competent students. Once they had proven themselves academically, the pledges face two final challenges. They had to perform PT to military standards and they had to be interviewed by the Four-Beta officers about their knowledge of the sorority itself. Following the interviews, the officers would prepare a report about each pledge for presentation to the membership for a formal vote of admittance, which would be held at the Friday meeting on August 12. Formal swearing in would be the following day, at a ceremony held at midnight.

There was another duty awaiting the pledges: volleyball. At the beginning of every fall semester the sororities held volleyball tournaments against each other, the rule being that only freshmen and sophomores were allowed to play. The previous year the Four-Beta's had come in second out of 23 participating sororities, but unfortunately all of last year's players now were juniors and ineligible to play. As for Elaine's group, there were only two players who could hold up in a volleyball court and not make total fools out of themselves. Other sophomores had athletic talent, but it was not playing volleyball.

Tracy took her pledges out to the back yard to have them practice and see if any might make suitable volleyball players. It turned out that all of them had some experience playing volleyball and that each pledge had different talent. Bernadette was very good at serving, while Lisa's height made her a natural for spiking the ball over the net. Kathleen was quick on her feet and good at making saves and passing the ball to other players. Cherine was the most versatile of the pledges, able to play any position competently. As soon as she saw her group in action, Tracy realized that, when the pledges were combined with the two sophomores, the sorority already had the core players for that fall semester's team. Hopefully the fall pledge group would provide some alternates, and the Four-Betas could come close to matching the previous group led by Shannon.

So...every night volleyball practice was added to the endless list of duties and responsibilities the pledges had to fulfill. The days and nights were full and the pledges were exhausted, but everyone, with the exception of a single sorority officer, took it for granted that four new members would swear in at the end of the summer semester.

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Heather understood that the chapter presidency, which only a few weeks before had seemed assured to be hers, was gone. If she did not have the support of Elaine and Shannon, she would not be able to count on the votes of very many of the sophomores and juniors. She realized that if her position continued to deteriorate, it was quite likely that several seniors would vote against her as well. As for simply staying in her current position as Sergeant-at-Arms; no, that was unacceptable.

Heather's soul filled with anger and hatred over what she felt was a betrayal of everyone in the sorority. The presidency was rightfully hers. How dare all those stupid bitches turn against her, after all the time she put into making the sorority such a great place? And just who was it that was taking away what rightfully belonged to her? That miserable butch soldier-girl, with her nasty attitude... And why? Because...because of that bi-sexual California slut Lisa Campbell...that kiss-up who didn't even have the decency to pledge as a freshman. No...that Californian had to wait, so she could come in as Pledge Know-it-all. Oh yes, the slut princess of the Economics Department...

Throughout the middle of July, Heather's bitterness, resentment, and hatred intensified against Tracy and Lisa. She began to obsess about the pledge even more than her rival, thinking that it was Lisa who had made Tracy so popular. What to do? How could she get even? She took it for granted she no longer could win the Four-Beta presidency, but at least she wanted to get revenge against Lisa for ruining her life.

Then Heather's thoughts took another turn. Tracy wouldn't be where she was without Pledge Lisa. What would happen if she somehow could get rid of Lisa? Perhaps, if Tracy's star pledge were eliminated, her popularity would collapse and Heather would remain the top contender for the sorority presidency. From that initial idea, Heather's thoughts began to move in a very unfortunate direction...

Get rid of Lisa...get rid of Lisa...get rid of Lisa...

Tracy and Heather carefully watched each other throughout the first weeks of July. Each knew what the other was thinking: that Heather was looking for an opportunity to strike at Tracy, while Tracy fully anticipated that something was going to happen and would have to counter. The nature of the fight and the two women's personalities gave Heather had one advantage over her rival. Tracy never struck first in a fight. She waited for her opponent to do something, and then countered. Her reluctance to initiate any confrontations gave Heather the luxury of waiting for an opportunity...

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On Wednesday night of the third week in July, the familiar pattern of the final weeks of pledging was disrupted in a big way. Very late that evening Tracy led her pledge group from the campus library back to the sorority, weighted down as usual, with library books. As they passed the small park near the sorority, Tracy's keen senses alerted her that something was wrong. She decided to investigate, ordering her group to wait for her on the sidewalk.

The Pledge Mistress disappeared into the darkness. Then the pledges heard a cough and what sounded like gagging.

"Wake up! Wake up! Please...you've got to wake up!"

Tracy's words were followed by more gagging and another cough. The pledges immediately ran into the park, only to be confronted by very grim sight. The Pledge Mistress was sitting on the ground holding another young woman. Both were covered in vomit. The other woman's face was partially obscured by torn duct tape, which also covered her wrists and ankles. The woman's feet and hands still were bound, because Tracy had not yet had the opportunity to take off anything other than the tape covering her companion's mouth and eyes.

"Cherine, get the tape off her hands! Kathleen, you get my phone out of my backpack and call 911! Alcohol poisoning and asphyxiation! Very shallow breathing...victim semi-conscious! Bernadette, go out to the sidewalk and watch for cops! If you see one, flag him down!"

As Kathleen nervously pulled out Tracy's phone and dialed 911 with trembling hands, Cherine and Lisa began tearing at the duct tape wrapped around the other woman's ankles and wrists. They were amazed at how much tape had been used to bind their companion and at how long it took to get it off. Tracy continued to concentrate on the woman's face, trying to make sure she was breathing and that her air passage was not blocked. It was quite probable that she had inhaled some vomit into her lungs, but there wasn't much Tracy could do about that. The Pledge Mistress and Lisa held the semi-conscious woman upright as vomit and mucus continued dribbling out of her nose and mouth.

Bernadette came back within a couple of minutes with two cops running behind her. Immediately they took over, one of them grabbing Tracy's arm and rudely pushing her out of the way. An ambulance pulled up to the entrance of the park, and Bernadette ran back out to flag down the medics.

As for directly helping the victim, the Four-Betas were finished. However, their involvement in the case was far from over. The police ordered the women to get into squad cars to go downtown for questioning.

What started out as a simple good deed turned into an all-night odyssey. The police separated Tracy from the rest of her group and interrogated her about what happened. The cop clearly was very angry, shouting at her that the emergency was the fourth sorority-related alcohol-poisoning incident that week. She held up her hands:

"Officer! She's not my pledge! I don't know who she is! We just found her, all tied up!"

With that Tracy recited what happened, a story confirmed by the separate interview of each member of the Four-Beta group. It became obvious that the women were telling the truth, partly because of their uniforms, and partly because their health and appearance were nothing like the condition of the young woman in the emergency room.

While the women of the Four-Beta Sorority waited to answer questions and fill out witness declarations, the medics took the poisoning victim to the emergency room where she had her stomach pumped, her lungs cleaned out, and a breathing tube with oxygen inserted into her mouth. She needed to be re-hydrated and get some rest, but soon it became apparent that she narrowly had escaped any lasting damage to her health. Actually, she narrowly escaped dying asphyxiated by her own vomit.

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Oddly enough, in spite of her condition, the patient remembered some of the details of her rescue, something about a tall, dark-haired woman pulling the tape off her mouth. She wanted to see her rescuer, partly to thank her, and partly to piece together what happened. She refused to go back to sleep until the hospital contacted the police station to find that dark-haired woman. Finally, at 3:00 a.m. the night nurse relented and placed a call to see if Tracy still was with the police.

Upon getting the phone call, Tracy gave up on the idea that she might get any sleep that night, so she called a taxi and ordered her pledges to return to the sorority. She knew that she was letting them out of her sight for the first time in over a month. However, she did not see how she could avoid going to the hospital and the pledges absolutely had to get some sleep. The pledges, who by that time were accustomed to trailing behind Tracy without interruption, were uneasy about being separated from their mentor, but the need for sleep overrode any other concerns. They were quite glad to be headed back to the sorority.

An officer took Tracy to the hospital and led her to the young woman she had rescued. She was pale and disheveled, but certainly looked much better than she looked when Tracy first saw her in the park. Tracy introduced herself and calmly asked her companion her name. The woman in the bed introduced herself as Brittany. Upon learning her name, the Four-Beta Pledge Mistress asked Brittany how much she remembered about what happened in the park.

"I...I remember you...and choking...and...how dark it was...I guess that's about it."

"You don't remember how you got there?"

"Yeah, I kinda do, but it's a secret. We're not allowed to talk about it."

"Well, Brittany, I think, since me and my pledge group gave up our night helping you out, you're gonna have to talk about it, whether you're allowed to or not. You owe me an explanation. You asked to see me, and I'm here. Now that I'm here, I want to know what the fuck you were doing, drunk and tied up by yourself in a park at 10:30 at night."

None of Brittany's story surprised Tracy. She was pledging an un-chartered sorority that was one of the Four-Beta Sorority's bitterest rivals. Brittany's sorority was everything the Four-Beta's were not, a smaller, cliquish, rather disorganized group living in a totally trashed house with a social life that mostly revolved around drinking parties and an associated fraternity.

Brittany had undergone two hellish months of various hazing rituals that focused around constant drinking, performing oral sex on fraternity members, and random humiliations. For some reason, tying their pledges with duct tape and leaving them in isolated spots seemed to be a favorite activity of the members of the rival sorority. The park incident was not the first time Brittany had been duct-taped while drunk and left alone for several hours. The previous week she had been duct-taped and left sitting in a pond, and when she finally was pulled out she had several leeches attached to her body.

Tracy's training as a psychologist and Brittany's need to talk to someone about her unpleasant life resulted in a very long conversation. Tracy was interested in helping the younger woman and realized that she deeply regretted signing on as a pledge with her sorority. There wasn't anything Brittany could do, however, because once a freshman committed to pledging, she was prohibited from leaving. The sorority members stated quite plainly that anyone who attempted to leave their pledge program would be beaten up upon leaving the house, and then harassed until she left the university.

As she continued to talk, Brittany realized how much she hated her sorority and the life she had gotten herself into. She was tired of being drunk or hung-over all the time, tired of dealing with drunken fraternity guys, and very worried about the fact she was failing her summer classes.

"I don't know why I even did this. I've had it. I can't take it anymore...I just...can't take it anymore..."

There was another concern that Brittany had, a worry that loomed ever larger as her mind cleared of alcohol and she sobered up. Because she had to be rescued by a stranger, undoubtedly she would be beaten up for inadvertently divulging information about her sorority's hazing practices. She became increasingly scared at what was going to happen once her sorority sisters found out what happened and came to the hospital to pick her up.

Tracy sat back, mulling over her companion's problems. How stupid, she thought to herself, how stupid. They practically killed this poor girl and now all that's gonna happen is she's gonna get beat up. That's total bullshit.

The matter could have ended at that point, Tracy leaving the hospital and Brittany to her fate. However, simply leaving someone if they wanted assistance was not in Tracy's nature. She wanted to help, because it was obvious that the freshman needed to extricate herself from her situation but couldn't do it on her own.

There was a second consideration on Tracy's mind. As Pledge Mistress, it was her duty to be constantly looking for potential new members for the sorority. If Brittany was unhappy with her current sorority, what was to prevent her from joining the Four-Beta's? She would have to wait until September to begin formally pledging, but in the meantime she could live at the sorority house, recuperate her health, and try to salvage her grades. Her current sorority would be livid over having one of their pledges defect to a rival sorority and undoubtedly try to strike at her, but so what? To get at Brittany they would have to get into a sorority house guarded by 80 women in excellent physical shape who had taken endless hours of personal defense training.

"You know, at the Four-Beta house we do things totally differently."

"Yeah, I know. They told us all about you."

"Well, did they tell you that at the Four-Beta house we don't drink? We don't let our members get drunk, and there's no way we'd let a pledge touch alcohol. We don't even allow alcohol on our property. During the semester, if we catch anyone drinking, they get put on probation. We catch 'em drinking again, and they get kicked out. We catch anyone with drugs, they're gone immediately. We don't want any of that shit in our lives."

"Yeah, they all make fun of you because of it."

"...and you think the way you do things is better?"

"No. I mean, I thought the drinking would be fun, but it's not. I feel like shit, all the time I feel like shit, and I'm sick of it."

"We don't let our members feel like shit. We exercise and eat right so we don't feel like shit. Life's too short to live feeling like shit."

Brittany said nothing, but her blank teary stare clearly expressed what was on her mind. She knew that she had pledged the wrong sorority. Tracy continued:

"Academics is another thing we don't slack on. My sorority's grade point average is 3.7. We bust our asses making sure we get good grades, because that's why we're here at the university, to go to class. You can't put down how many keg parties you've been to on a resume, so we don't waste our time with that shit."

Brittany sat silent. Then she noticed a tiny detail that would change the course of her life. Adhesive from the duct tape still was stuck to her wrist. She wanted it off and began picking at it. Tracy commented:

"Having duct tape stuck on your wrists is your choice. You could make this the last time you ever have to pick duct tape off yourself, because we don't do that to our pledges."

"But...I can't quit."

"Why not?"

"Because...I..."

Suddenly Tracy's words "you could make this the last time you ever have to pick duct tape off yourself, because we don't do that to our pledges" registered in Brittany's mind. She looked up.

"Brittany, I'm issuing an invitation for you to come with me to the Four-Beta house, because it doesn't bother me in the least to grab a pledge from another sorority. You're not happy where you are right now, so I'm giving you a chance to get out."

"...you mean, like...join the Four-Beta's?"

"What I mean is initiating the process of becoming a Four-Beta pledge. Your formal training wouldn't start until September. Before that, there's a lot of shit in your life you've gotta fix, starting with your classes. If you come with me, I can tell you exactly what you're gonna be doing tonight. You're gonna sit your ass down in the Four-Beta library and start getting caught up with your coursework. We can't let you pledge if your grades are fucked up."

The thought of spending a night quietly studying, not drinking or being subjected to beer bongs, not having to suck some guy's dick, not having to be tied up and dumped somewhere, not being insulted or kicked, sealed Brittany's decision to leave the hospital with the no-nonsense woman who had saved her life.

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