Legally BindingbyAlessia Brio©
Bruce wasn't quite sure how he had landed in his current predicament. However, he was quite sure he didn't like it. It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon. Sunny, seventy-five degrees, light breeze. On days like today, he was supposed to be sailing on Lake Michigan with his lovely wife. Instead, he was literally shackled to the enormous antique desk in his basement home office--a cuff around his right ankle was connected to a similar cuff around the leg of his desk by a heavy six foot chain. He was captive. That, of course, was Tamara's intent.
There was a formidable stack of work to be done. Work that he'd put off, admittedly, for far too long. Legal briefs to finish. Cases to prepare. Depositions to review. Phone calls to return. Due to the past two weeks of gorgeous spring weather, coming on the heels of a brutal winter, the "to do" list had gotten rather lengthy.
Tamara, who also served as his business manager, was completely fed up with his procrastination. Being the one who answered the phone, she had to deal with all the irate clients. They'd call at all hours of the day and night. She was feeling the pressure, and now she was making sure Bruce felt it as well.
At first, Bruce was pissed. How dare she? He had considered just watching television all day. Fix her wagon! There was a big screen TV on the other side of the room. However, that plan was quickly dashed when he discovered that Tamara had moved the remote control out of his reach. This was no spontaneous decision! She had apparently thought it through. Bruce's anger slowly morphed into a grudging admiration for his resourceful wife.
Well, nothing to do but buckle down and get busy. Bruce knew that when Tamara got that look in her eyes there was no changing her mind. He'd tried before, and although he believed himself to be extraordinarily persuasive, he'd failed miserably. There were no cracks in her armor! He had no doubt that she really meant it when she said he'd not be freed until the work was finished.
After four solid hours without a break, Bruce realized he was famished. Had he known what was in store, he'd have eaten a heartier breakfast. The coffee and toast were just not tiding him over, and his hunger was making concentration difficult.
As if she'd known just when he'd run out of steam, Tamara appeared with a lunch tray. One wimpy sandwich and a glass of water. Prisoner's rations. She wore shorts and a halter top, hair pulled back in a pony tail. From the grass stains on her knees, Bruce deduced that she'd been working in the garden. Lawyers are good at that deduction stuff, he congratulated himself. Her forehead, cheeks, and shoulders were pink from the sun, and she looked quite fetching. For a moment Bruce forgot his hunger as he admired his wife's curves.
In an instant, she was gone again. Bruce devoured the sandwich and downed the water. It was far from satisfying, but it did take the edge off so that he could once again concentrate on the work at hand. However, before long, he realized he needed a break of a different sort.
Bruce yelled. Waited. Yelled again. Waited. No response. Certainly Tamara wouldn't leave him there to piss in his pants. Would she?
Giving it one more try before he resorted to using the empty water glass, Bruce finally heard Tamara's footsteps on the stairs.
"What is it?" she demanded, sounding less than pleased to be summoned. She had apparently been in the shower, for she was dripping wet and wrapped only in a towel. Another one of those brilliant lawyerly deductions.
"I gotta go."
Evidently, she had not considered this development, for her expression softened somewhat and she paused briefly before responding.
"Oh. Um... okay. I'll get the key, but once you've done your business, it's back to the desk. Promise?"
If anything about their relationship was set in stone, it was that promises were kept. To violate one would be the end of a sacred trust. It was something they'd agreed upon very, very early in their marriage. There was no proverbial crossing of fingers behind one's back in this household. No way, Jose.
"Yeah, I promise."
Tamara quickly fetched the key and knelt to release the cuff from his ankle. Of course, when she did so, Bruce got flashed. It was simply not possible to kneel while wearing only a towel and keep one's "assets" covered.
Instantly at attention, Bruce struggled to maintain his composure. He knew that any attempts at intimacy would be flatly denied. Absolutely no diversions would be permitted. There was no mercy in this court.
What was taking so long? Tamara fumbled with the lock, all the while making no move to adjust her towel. She had to realize the effect her exposure would be having. Was she intentionally teasing him? The jury was still out on that one.
Bruce couldn't see her face, so he couldn't be sure, but he didn't think she'd do that to him given that she knew how badly he needed to pee. However, until this morning, he'd have sworn she'd never chain him to his desk either. Oh, she'd threatened to do it many times, but that was just teasing. Or was it? This was a side of Tamara that Bruce had never seen.
After what seemed to be an excruciatingly long time, the cuff finally fell free, and Bruce hurriedly ducked into the lavatory. Not only did he really, really have to go, but he was also determined not to give Tamara the satisfaction of seeing the effect she'd had on him.
Now, however, Bruce was having trouble calming down enough to pee. Damn it! She'd know why it was taking him so long. She might even be thinking that he was "relieving himself" in another way.
"Are you okay, darling?" came a decidedly wicked voice from the other side of the door. At that point, Bruce deduced that Tamara had indeed "briefed" him—and had done it exceedingly well.
Bruce tried to think the most unstimulating thoughts: income taxes, oozing sores, flat tires, and Supreme Court justices. Gradually, his gallant soldier retreated, and he was able to empty his bladder.
Without looking directly at Tamara, Bruce stoically planted himself at the desk and extended his leg to be re-cuffed. Once again, Tamara knelt. Once again, she took her sweet time. Once again, the sleeper was awakened. Damn her! He didn't recall it taking her nearly as long the first time. Of course, the first time she was not wearing only a towel either. Be it ever so humble, that piece of white cotton was causing a time warp.
"Back to work!" she ordered as she rose and sauntered out of the room, paying absolutely no attention to his growing predicament.
After contemplating rotting fish, Newt Gingrich, and road kill for the next several minutes, Bruce was once again able to focus on the work in need of completion. He put in a solid two hours before Tamara reappeared. Going over his accomplishments, she seemed rather impressed at the amount of work he'd completed, although she tried not to show it.
"I'm going out for a while," she announced. "Do you need anything before I leave?"
Yeah, Bruce thought, I need you kneeling in that towel again--a "cross examination," if you will. He nearly said it aloud. It was on the tip of his tongue. However, from the look on Tamara's face, he deduced that would be the wrong thing to say.
Instead, he turned back to his work before his mouth landed him in trouble. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Tamara leaving the room. He willed himself not to look. He really, really tried not to watch—okay, ogle—her backside. His will failed him, however, and Bruce's gaze was undeniably resting squarely on Tamara's "closing arguments" when she suddenly turned around.
Bruce quickly looked away, but he knew that Tamara had seen. She always knew when he was watching. Always.
After a short while, Bruce plunged back into his work. The next time he looked up, nearly four more hours had passed, and the work was complete. Bruce was exhausted, but exhilarated. And, as if she had somehow known, Bruce heard Tamara's car pulling into the garage.
Waiting impatiently, Bruce listened as she entered the house, put away some groceries, started a load of laundry, emptied the trash, and took another shower.
Finally, he heard her footfalls on the stairs.
"I'm finished," he proudly announced even before she came into view, a big grin on his face.
She turned the corner, carrying a large shopping bag, wearing nothing but a smile, and said, "Oh, no you're not!"