“I am free!” she said. “You do not appear to be free,” I said

“I am free!” she said.
“You do not appear to be free,” I said.

She knelt before me, stark naked. She wore an improvised girl-yoke. This consisted of a stout branch, about two inches thick, and some five feet in length, drilled at the center and near the extremities. It fits behind the back of the girl’s neck. A long, single thong of rawhide fastens the girl in place. Her left wrist is thonged and then the thong is passed through the drilled aperture in the left end of the yoke. Her wrist is pulled tight to the yoke. The same thong is then taken behind the yoke and passed through the center hole, whence, after having been knotted, to prevent slippage to the left, and having been looped about the girl’s neck, usually some five times, and having been knotted again, to prevent slippage to the right, it is returned through the same hole, whence it is taken behind the yoke to the hole drilled at the right-hand extremity of the apparatus. It is passed through that hole and then, of course, is used to fasten the girl’s right wrist in place, tightly against the yoke.

When this action is completed then, as you can see, the whole package is neatly tied. The knots near the throat bands, in preventing slippage, serve two functions; they hold the girl’s wrists against the yoke and, at the same time, prevent any undue stress from being placed on the throat bands. The function of the throat bands is to hold the girl’s throat in the yoke, securely and perfectly, not to cause her discomfort, nor to strangle her. Gorean men are not fools in tying women.

Confined as she is, with her arms extended, a girl can exert almost no leverage to free herself. Smaller yokes, some two to two and a half feet in length, similarly constructed, can be used for other purposes, such as enjoying a girl in the furs. Afterwards she can always be kenneled or chained. A soft, braided leather rope, a trade rope, cored with wire, some fifteen or twenty feet in length, was looped some five times about the girl’s left ankle, and tied, thence being run to the axle of the nearby wagon to which she was tethered. This is a useful sanitary provision as the girl, then, need not sit or lie too near to her own wastes. The wire coring in the rope, of course, tends to discourage the attempt to chew through the bond. Light chains, sheathed in silk, or satin or velvet, incidentally, have this utility as well, as well as their intrinsic strength, more than adequate for the securing of a female. Three separate thongs, incidentally, two short and one long, are sometimes used for this type of securing of the female. In this way of doing things each wrist is tied in the center of one of the short thongs. The two free ends of the short thong are then taken back through the hole and, once through the hole, are simply knotted, heavily.

This knot cannot, of course, be drawn back through the small drilled hole by the girl. Her wrists are thus held in place. One end of the longer thong is taken through the center aperture and that thong is then looped about the girl’s throat, usually, again, some five times, and then returned through the center aperture. Once through the aperture it is knotted together, heavily, with the other end of the thong. Again, of course, this knot, a heavy one, prevents the thongs from slipping back through the narrow aperture. The girl’s neck is thus held closely to the yoke. This, too, of course, is an effective way of securing a girl. Indeed, there is, in my opinion, normally little to choose from between these two yoke ties. Which is preferred may well depend on matters so trivial as the nature and lengths of the binding material available, for example, ropes, cordage, binding fiber, twisted silk, thongs or straps. If there is a preference, perhaps it would be for the single-bond tie. It is stout, and, in its unity, aesthetically attractive. Second only to the absolute helplessness of the female in her ties, in the Gorean mind, is the attractiveness of her bonds. They should be used to enhance her beauty as well as to imprison it with absolute perfection.

In passing, one might note a type of light neck yoke occasionally used in the march when more than one girl is involved, usually three to five. This consists of a long, peeled branch drilled at intervals, usually of about a yard or four feet. The girls are then placed along the branch and by means of one or more thongs tied at these intervals. They are then in single file and the branch is at the right side of their necks. This separates them, and they cannot get their mouth and teeth on the bond. Their hands are usually tied behind their backs. If several girls are to be yoked more than one branch is used and the branches are tied together. In this way a long column of slaves may be marched, usually by mounted masters. There are few metal collars and coffle chains in the Barrens. One supposes the red savages could trade for them, but this, and other simple arrangements, seem to be preferred, perhaps because of custom or tradition.

It is pleasant, incidentally, to see women marched in coffle, whether it be in some primitive arrangement or in the chains of a professional slaver. They are very beautiful in coffle. Too, it seems somehow significant and appropriate to see them so aligned, so displayed, so secured—numbers of them—in the plenitude and diversity of their beauties—all women, all helpless, and woman as the slave of man. To return to the habits of the red savages, it might be noted that in moving small groups of women, usually twenty or less, it is common simply to herd them from one place to another, like verr. This is usually done by boys on kaiila, with whips.

These yoke ties, incidentally, are not to be confused with a stock tie, or a stock yoke. This is normally a pair of hinged planks, with matched, semicircular openings in the planks. The girl’s wrists and neck are placed appropriately between the planks, aligned with the semicircular openings. The planks are then closed and tied or locked shut. Her neck and wrists, then, of course, helplessly, are fixed in place. They find themselves enclosed in effective and perfect constraints. This yoke is sometimes placed on a girl while she is on her back. If the planks are sufficiently wide the girl cannot see what the man is doing to her. She can only feel it. Similar sensations may be induced in a woman by putting her in a slave hood. She may then either be bound or not, as the master pleases.

Savages of Gor, p. 446-450

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