Kidnap Night was a tradition at Camp We No Orings. Midway through camp session, on a clear full moon night, we'd host a dance for the boys at Camp Kukamonga across the lake. The party always broke up promptly at 10pm, it was camp policy that there were no social activities after 10, and the girls would be in bed by 10:30. That's what parents loved about We No Orings.
But the camp director also knew about cabin fever, and that some teenage girls go crazy if they can't have a little fun after 10 once in a while. So it wasn't in the brochure, but this night, and only this night, the rules were relaxed, and any girl that wanted to get "kidnapped" would go to bed in the cabin nearest the dock. About 11 the boys would come and kidnap the girls and take them for a moonlit boat ride on the lake. The girls would get back about midnight and there would be comparative peace at We No Orings for the next couple weeks.
I'd met this really nice boy, Earl, at the dance, so I decided to get kidnapped this year. I went down to the cabin dressed in my T-shirt, short denim skirt and bathing suit. You never know about these kidnappings, usually the boys are sweet, but I've heard they sometimes get rambucious and playful. More than one girl has come back soaking wet.
There were nine of us, we got in our beds giggling and trying to pretend we were asleep. We turned the lights out even though Miss McLaughlin wasn't there yet -- one of the counselors always gets kidnapped, too.
By eleven I'd actually fallen asleep, but I woke up when I heard the screen door creak. The boys snuck in like a heard of elephants, and each one picked a victim. On a loudly whispered "three", each one picked a girl and held her mouth shut, then helped her stand up. Then this year went a little different than what I'd heard. The boy that had me tried to pull my arms behind me. I resisted for a moment, then let them go back. Then he started tying them.
"Wait!" I whispered loudly, and pulled my hands away to in front of me.
He grabbed my elbows and said, "Everyone's doing it. It's OK."
I looked around carefully in the darkness, about half the girls I could see had their arms behind them, and the way they were moving it was clear they were tied already. One by one the rest were letting their arms go behind. Alma, my best friend, was right across from me, I saw her arms go behind and she leaned forward a little so there was space between her wrists and her back. The boy behind her pulled her wrists across and was working with the rope. I relaxed and felt my suit stretch across my bosoms as this boy pulled my arms behind and wrapped cloth around my wrists. He didn't take long, and he didn't knot it hard. It might take me a few seconds to get out, but I sure wasn't tied for life.
Then he put something around my mouth, a sock maybe, and gagged me. Bound and gagged, this was a first for me, I was really excited already.
I wasn't the last, there was a cow's tail who couldn't seem to tie a knot. It was a strange scene. We girls stood there quietly, because we were gagged, while all around us there was a cacophony of boys whispering. Then it stopped; everyone was ready. We started out, each of us girls lead by a boy, and there were a couple extra boys so some girls got two escorts. I got two, and one of them was Earl, my nice boy.
We were lead down to the docks I was glad to see boats this year instead of canoes. It would have been a real trick to get some of us, I won't mention names, into canoes with our hands tied. Like I said, I won't mention names, but Jeany Elliot was along, and even though she was getting in a boat not a canoe, it was tipping a lot.
It was a beautiful moonlit night, just the right temperature. Some boy named Dave was rowing from the back seat, I faced him sitting primly in the middle seat, and Earl was behind me in the front seat. When we got away from camp, he pulled down my gag so I could talk.
"Welcome to the good ship lollipop, prisoner." he said in a deep voice that was supposed to imitate pirate, but sounded more like butler.
"Oh, please take me back." I said playing along speaking in a high falsetto, "My daddy's rich... and my momma's good looking."
"What?" Dave said.
"It's a line from a song, creep." I said in my regular voice.
"Who sings it?" he said, "Green Fried Bananas?"
"No, fool, someone old and dead, but it's a nice song. Do you want me to sing it for you?"
"No." he said. "Yes." Earl said.
I started singing
"Summertime, and the living is easy..." It as a little weak to start with, but Earl started rubbing my shoulders. He had a nice touch, it relaxed me, and my voice reached out over the water. By verse three he was braiding my hair. It must have been an odd sight, the three of us in the boat, one rowing, one singing with her hands tied behind her and a gag around her neck, and one behind giving her a backrub and braid.
It wasn't 'til I finished that I noticed that we weren't circling in the middle of the lake, we were headed for the edge. I looked around, but all I could see was dark trees. "Where are we going?" I said.
"Someplace special. There's a dock up ahead. It's time for you to get gagged again." said Earl, and that was all I got a chance to say.