Yesterday at the Studio, by the authority invested in me by the Commonwealth of Makebelieve-State, I executed a prisoner found guilty of the heinous crime of murder in the first degree.
I hanged him by the neck until he was dead.
Well, not really, of course. We faked it.
I had to write about it. I couldn’t not write about this one. I try very hard to respect clients’ privacy and how we spend our time together–because I really do respect them, or almost all of them, you know, and I don’t want to make a spectacle of them on my little blog (besides…I was there, too, if you know what I mean). But I had to write about this one. This was Just Too Fucking Much. Things like this just don’t come along every day.
I’d already done a session first thing in the morning, so I was a little spent. I’ve done as many as 4 in a day, but I find, depending on the nature of the session, that after 2, I’m fried. When I work independently, I almost never do more than 1. But at the Studio, when work comes along, you’re stupid not to take it if you can, because some days you don’t make anything.
Anyway…this man comes in in the early afternoon. Articulate, clean-cut, ironed jeans and a polo shirt. He looked normal.
He had that look in his eye. I’d recognize it at a thousand paces.
The look of a man in thrall to his fetish.
The intensity. He was strung tighter than piano wire. Tense. On fire. I wish I could describe it more accurately. The only thing I’ve seen remotely similar is the aura around religious fanatics when they really get rolling.
I shook his hand and had a seat. I assumed a professional and friendly-but-impersonal demeanor.
“So! What brings you in?” I asked.
He told me. He knew exactly what he wanted. The true fetishists always do. They know their obsessions inside and out. You better believe that I know mine.
He wanted to be publicly executed via hanging, then granted a reprieve as he danged at the end of the rope (the execution was botched on purpose) and tortured for two hours.
My heart sank.
See, usually I love this weird shit–and believe me, this was definitely some Weird Shit, even for the Studio. I find Weird Shit fascinating, and to quote Hunter S. Thompson, when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. And I am a pro.
But I am also Trying to Keep My Shit Together in the alcoholism department. That is priority numero uno these days. And that means minimizing stress and distractions and not doing stuff that fucks with my mind.
I was concerned that pretending to kill someone just might fuck with my mind. Just maybe. One never knows. I’ve pretended to kill people three times in my career, and it was always harmless fun, but really, one never knows. Some sessions leave…emotional backwash that doesn’t register right away.
It comes back later. In your dreams. Asleep and awake.
I wanted to give the session to another Mistress, but he wanted me.
What was I supposed to do? Say no to the money? I’m doing better than I ever have, but come on, the rent’s not paying itself. Besides–I was intrigued. This was some Weird Shit, and I knew for a fact that I was the best bitch in the house to do it. I knew more about capital punishment in American jurisprudence than any other woman working the shift. I come from a death penalty state, I have relatives in LE, I studied it professionally and recreationally, and I’m a good improv actress.
I don’t mind telling you: I was in fine form. When I do it right, I do it right, and I knocked that ball out of the fucking park. I was the Babe Ruth of the Superstudio yesterday afternoon.
First, I had the manager lock the “prisoner” in a cell with his “Last Meal.” Then I fired up the internet and learned how to tie a proper hangman’s noose. I took it to another room and strung it up from the ceiling.
Then I got dressed. While I prepared, I rehearsed out loud what I was going to say. Whenever I teach or speak in public, I have found that it always pays off to rehearse beforehand, preferably in front of a mirror. Don’t go in cold. Sound like you know what you’re talking about.
I wore tight black leather pants, a feminine see-through white silk blouse, a tight black leather vest, and matte black leather pumps. I put my hair up in a french twist. Minimal makeup, but bright red lipstick (red like blood, bwahahahahaha).
I got two of my co-workers to help me. I told them exactly what we were going to do. They were going to be prison guards. I was going to be, of course, the executioner.
They got all leathered up and put executioners’ masks on their heads. We looked totally badass.
Then we went to fetch the prisoner. I called him Prisoner 39. I stood in front of his cell and announced that I had come to fulfill my duties as chief executioner of the Commonwealth. I asked one of the “guards” if he’d finished with the prison chaplain.
Yes, she said. He’d made his peace with God.
I asked him if he was ready. I said that I would like to give him as much dignity, in this final act, as possible.
He announced that he intended to meet his fate like a man.
We pinioned his arms behind his back with rope and put leather mittens on his hands so that he couldn’t use them. Then I had the two other girls hold him by the arms–hard–and follow me out of the room and down the hall into a different room.
Where the noose was waiting.
When he saw it, he freaked out a little bit. I don’t know if it was real or if he was faking it. He started to sweat, though, and I guess you can’t fake that.
I turned and spoke in a loud voice, as if addressing a crowd:
“We are here today to carry out the execution of this prisoner, No. 39 Mr. John Doe. He has been tried and convicted by a jury of his peers for the crime of homicide in the first degree. In accordance with the law of the Commonwealth of MadeupState, he is to be hanged by the neck until dead.”
I asked him if he had any last words.
“I’m not sorry for what I did,” he said.
That was all.
I put a black bag (a pillowcase) over his head. Then I tied his ankles together so that he wouldn’t kick, because sometimes, when hanged, they kick and shiver in death.
I could see the black bag puffing in and out with his respiration.
I put the noose over his head and tightened it (but not too tight). I put it as high up on the neck as possible. I even put the knot just behind his left ear…almost.
Almost, but not quite.
Because the execution had to be “botched.”
“Can we call the governor? Can I get a retrial?” he asked through the bag.
I ignored him. “Now, by the authority invested in me by the Commonwealth of MadeupState, it is my duty to execute this prisoner!”
I had one of my co-workers raise the lid on a heavy wooden box in the room. She dropped the lid and it made a loud clap. That was supposed to be the sound of the “drop,” you know…when the gallows floor opens up and drops the condemned.
I jerked the rope up (but not too tight…I didn’t want to suffocate him for real. That would be great. Oh yeah…call an ambulance…the Post would love that one. Some dumbass mistress almost killed a man at the Nutcracker Suite a few years ago via a noose. Thankfully, the guy lived…not even any brain damage. The Nutcracker Suite is now defunct. Wonder why?).
The prisoner pretended to be strangling at the end of the rope. He made delightfully gruesome choking noises and turned slowly in a circle.
All in a day’s work, my friends. All in a day’s work. How else is a girl supposed to keep the lights on and feed a Parrot?
After a minute, I shouted at him (and for the first time, there was a little emotion in my voice: contempt and a little humor. Before, I’d been as cold and professional as possible): “Do you know why you are still alive, Prisoner 39? Because Governor Murphy called me this morning and told me that hanging was too good for you!“
I loosened the noose and took it off his head. Then I snatched the bag away and got up in his face, nose to nose.
“The Governor tasked me with making you truly pay for your heinous crime! As chief executioner, I assured him that I was more than up to the task. Guards, assist me in securing the prisoner.”
He started to beg for death. He said that he’d heard stories about me, and they were supposed to be true. He said that I was the most notorious female torturers and executioners in the country, and he would rather be dead than fall into my hands.
We tied him up on the cross.
“Leave us,” I told the guards.
Then we got busy.
When I wasn’t hurting him, we made small talk about his fetish (he’d said that he wanted to talk about it). Basically, the dude had…well, an execution fetish. That was a new one to me. I’ve met men who wanted to role-play being killed before…but usually, it’s just the fantasy of being killed by a beautiful woman (one guy wanted to be drugged, killed, and then chopped up and put into Hefty bags. The hilarious part, to me, was that he was so damn specific about the garbage bags. Black Hefty bags! No other garbage bags would do! He brought his own Black Heftys, lest the dungeon not have the correct type of severed-limb-containing plastic bags. I did the best I could with it). I’d never met a man who had a formal execution fetish.
“So, if you had to be executed, what would you choose?” he asked me.
“Firing squad,” I said, no hesitation.
“Me, too! That’s my favorite. I’d refuse the blindfold, too. I’d want to see. A firing squad made up of beautiful women…” his eyes got far away and dreamy.
I swear I am not making this up.
We talked about methods of execution. He knew all about each one. We debated the merits and dangers of each: electrocution, hanging, the gas chamber, lethal injection.
“The gas chamber doesn’t actually sound so painful, but after WWII, it looks really bad,” he said.
Then the conversation would drift back into his fantasy: “So, how did you become Chief Executioner?”
I told him that I got my Ph.D. in Criminal Justice and then worked my way up through the penitentiary system, apprenticing under the last great female executioner.
“You know, before I became an outlaw, I used to be an executioner,” he said.
“Yes. One time I had to execute a beautiful young woman. I stayed up with her all the night before, and counseled her so that she wouldn’t be scared. She trusted me and knew that I wouldn’t hurt her when the time came to kill her.
The next morning, I gently lead her to the wall and shot her in the heart.”
* * * *
That is one of the most macabre, fascinating fantasies I’d ever heard. And I’ve heard more than my fair share.
* * * *
Aside from this weirdass execution fetish, the man seemed normal. It was a great session. I’d take a break from the conversation and torture every now and again and give him a sip of water to drink, holding his head gently while I poured the water into his mouth.
“It doesn’t have to hurt every time I touch you, Prisoner 39,” I smiled.
In the end, I let him go. He said that he had a great time. He gave me a good tip. The only time I got irritated with him was when he said: “I wish that my wife was more like you.”
That made me want to slap him in the face. I would have done it, but the session was over and so it would have been wrong of me to do that. Have some fucking respect, buddy. Sorry your wife is a real live human being who has a ton of stuff to do in her life other than embody your sexual fantasy. And even if she is a crappy wife, you shouldn’t bad-mouth her to a stranger, especially another woman. Have some class!
I don’t know why that irritated me so much. Probably because it reminded me of something the Mathematician told me when he dropped the bomb on me that morning: My wife isn’t sexy like you.
Wish she could have been there to hear you say that, Mathematician. I wonder how the marriage counseling is going? Did she dump you yet? She can do better.
But I digress.
The session was fine. We finished, I cleaned up, and then I went and flopped down on the couch. Two multi-hour sessions, back-to-back! I felt like a dead donkey!
I almost got another one, too. When I heard that, I groaned: “If this guy picks me, I’M going to need an executioner!” Ultimately, though, the guy picked the tallest mistress in the house (I was second-tallest yesterday). I guess he was into height. These guys, the things they come up with!
I think I came out of it okay. No emotional backwash yet. No bad dreams. I think everything in my head is all right.
An execution. God, what a day. Just when I think I’ve seen it all.
* * * *
Also, let me tell you, management at the Studio has been a total shitstorm recently. I haven’t been there much because I’m back in AA Bootcamp, but ever time I show up, there is Major Management Drama. I don’t know where these crazy bitches got their business acumen, but something tells me it wasn’t the fucking Stern School of Business at NYU, okay?
Two of them, including the ferocious terror-inducing Russian, are acting like hardened Southern crackers in a blood feud. They’re at war. Another one had surgery recently and her medication is making her a space cadet. We had to send her home in a cab the other day. Managers Hatfield and McCoy weren’t going to come in, so that meant that we had to run the dungeon ourselves for the day.
Fine with me! I’m a socialist at heart, anyway.
I got on the Manager’s computer and found the National Anthem of the USSR on YouTube. I cranked up the volume and played it for the House:
(Aside: while the irony of the lyrics does not escape me, the Soviets had a great fuckin national anthem. I’m glad that the Russians kept it and just changed the lyrics. They’d be out of their minds to ditch that awesome tune. Our national anthem sucks. It’s beautiful, but you have to be able to sing like Pavarotti in order to actually sing it. I can’t sing it. Can you? Do you know anyone who actually can? Have you ever heard anyone sing it outside of a sporting event? Do you even know the lyrics? I don’t!
Also, remember when our enemies were white people with a navy who could do calculus, and not some deadbeat crazy loser Arabs with boxcutters? Wasn’t that romantic?)
“Down with management! We can manage ourselves. Let’s take over! Take the machines! The workers now control the means of production!” I shouted, laughing maniacally.
The other women looked at me, slightly concerned. Usually, I am the calm, sane one.
“Take it easy, Margo.”
I put up a screensaver of Karl Marx. I bet the Russian manager got a charge out of that one when she saw it, hahhaha. I can hear it now: “Vat is zees? Vat is screensaver of Marx heer?”
Of course, the minute we didn’t have formal management, we got really busy, with wackadoodles coming in and the phones ringing off the hook. We took turns manning the desk and everything worked out just fine. It was my idea to make every woman accountable for her own money, that way if anyone was dishonest and tried to rip off the house, the only one she would endanger would be herself. We put the House’s cut in sealed envelopes and then signed our names across the seal, so that it would be obvious if anyone tampered with them (that, too, was my idea).
We got through it just fine. Actually better than fine, because without managers there was no shitstorm melodrama.