It started as a low-agonized gasp and built in force until it bounced off the walls in an ear-splitting crescendo. Then it was choked off in one shuddering gasp.
The three smooth bodies writhed together in a straining, undulating dance forming a tableau of madness incarnate. Now a chain rattled, rusty steel rasped on rusty steel. A woman’s voice pleaded. The plea was answered by strident, raucous laughter.
The two female guards stood back and surveyed their handiwork. Their charge hung from her fettered arms. Cruel gyves encircled the soft whiteness of her wrists.
Her strained position against the dank, uneven stone wall was designed to show off her feminine loveliness to the greatest avail. The light of the orange-red flames tinted her flesh, casting an eerie glow over the tattered dress she wore.
As she stared down in disbelief, her wantonly beautiful wardresses busied themselves fettering her slim ankles to a system of chains and locks. She began to sob.
The girl tugged mightily at the bonds which held her, setting the chain links to rattling.
"Why?" she cried. "In heaven's name, why?"
Clawed, talon-sharp nails raked out, catching the bodice of her dress, ripping it downward, exposing the fullness of her bra-clad breasts.
"Scream!" the wardress hissed. "Scream to your heart's content. That's what they come to hear." She pointed over the ring of flames which circled the raised stone stage. As if in answer to her gesture, the half nude captive heard the gibbering voices of many men and women.
Now her attention was focused on the iron door through which she had been dragged. Once again it opened and once again, a young, shrieking girl was half-dragged, half-carried through its forbidding aperture.
In horror, she stood watching the girl chained like an animal to the wall. Dull recognition spread through her mind. She remembered having seen the face in the Vienna employment agency. She recalled having seen the second girl once again on the Dolsach bus.
It was madness – some sort of nightmare – this couldn't be happening. This was Austria, 1947. This was not some medieval torture chamber. Soon she'd awake and laugh long and hard at the dream which had caused her such pain. If she only rested against the chains, they would not cut so deeply. It was all in her mind; her subconscious mind.
She had drunk too much wine, that was it. But it had been so delicious. So had the food which was placed before her by the man called Hoerst Rascher. It had been a long time, longer than she could remember, since Sophia Bruck had tasted anything this sumptuous. It had been a longer time since she had felt the luxury of silken underwear clinging to her lovely body. It had been exciting and exhilarating, almost as exciting as Frau Mirau.
Sophia Bruck had reveled in her good fortune and thought that it might prove the turning point of her life.
How fortunate she had gone to the employment agency in search of work as a domestic. After all, there were far more terrible things that the women of Vienna had found themselves doing in order to obtain a cigarette, a crust of bread, a place to sleep for the night.
Sophia Bruck had somehow managed to avoid the soldiers who patrolled the city. So far she had never been dragged into an alley and raped by any of the conquerors. She had been just another displaced person, wandering aimlessly, tormented by the cold, hunger and despair. She hadn't put any faith in the employment agency. There were no jobs in Austria, no money, no homes. Yet she had been agreeably surprised. The woman who had interviewed her in the small cubicle had been warm and friendly. She had introduced herself as Frau Irma Mirau.
Irma Mirau had been different from what one might have expected of an Austrian housewife. She was young and exquisite, with flowing blonde hair and a wantonly lovely figure. Her smile was beautiful, showing even white teeth. Had Sophia Bruck been more discerning, however, she would have detected the cruel lines around the woman's mouth and eyes. She would have been more alert to the almost caressing touch of the woman’s hand on her own arm.
But Sophia thought only of the possibilities of employment. So desperate was she that she painted out her qualifications, none of which could be checked. Frau Mirau had listened absently. Her mind had seemed miles away.
Finally she had spoken of the position. “My late husband was a minor government official,” Frau Mirau had said. “His legacy included a home on the outskirts of Dolsach. It is quite comfortable, certainly better than the alleys of Vienna. You may consider yourself employed, if you wish. That is if your family has no objections to your working so far from home."
"I have no family," Sophia Bruck had hastened to inform her prospective mistress. "I have nothing, nobody. I am like so many others."
Frau Mirau had sighed deeply. "The price of failure," she'd said through clenched teeth. "The victors will see that we all suffer."
Sophia Bruck had almost danced with joy as she had boarded the Dolsach bus. A warm bed, a roof over her head, hot food, it had been too much to hope for.
She must wake from this nightmare, she told herself again. She would find herself in the neat little room which Frau Mirau had assigned her. She would feel the soft silken clothing which her mistress had insisted on giving her. Why had she been fool enough to drink so much wine? When you are not used to the heady stuff, it can do horrible things to you. But now she saw Frau Mirau approaching her. The woman's beautiful face was twisted into a gargoyle of hate and blood lust. She reached out and pinched Sophia's exposed flesh. Then Irma Mirau whirled in a complete circle. Her hands went up to her own hair, running through the golden tresses. Slowly they worked way downward over the twin·circumferences of her arrogant breasts, over the flatness of her belly, down along her plump hips and thighs.
"Comrades of the Deutsch Jugend," the mistress of the chamber cried, "tonight we rededicate ourselves to the glory that was Germany. We anoint ourselves with blood that we may remain steadfastly dedicated to our noble purpose."
"Achtung!" a man bellowed. There was the scraping chairs and through the veil of flames, Sophia Bruck saw the assembled guests rise to their feet, arms out-thrust at right angles.
Irma Mirau caught the hem of her dress in her long fingers, worked the glimmering satin over her head and stood clad in black silk bra and panties. Her voluptuous body glistened. The two other wardresses followed suit. Soon they stood completely naked before their audience and their prisoners.
"Blood!" a woman screeched. "Blood for the Fourth Reich!"
The mob moved forward as one great loathsome beast, their eyes glazed with anticipation.
Sophia Bruck marveled at her own ability to watch the preparations for the orgy. By now several girls had been chained to the wall. They still wore the tattered remnants of their clothing. The pitiful rags lent a sense of suffering to the fearful tableau.
Each of the captive women was young, utterly desirable, and quivering with terror. Irma Mirau walked among them, a short handled whip dangling from her slim hand. Her eye lit on the girl whom Sophia had seen on the bus. The whip whistled in a short arc. The rattling of chains and the girl's torture-strangled cry answered its obscene crack. What had remained of her dress had been ripped from her shoulders. She tried to cover her body, to protect it from the lascivious gloating stares of her tormentors. But chained as she was, she was helpless.
"Unchain her!" Irma Mirau ordered.
The girl screamed mightily as rough hands tore the shackles from her limbs. With her small fists she buffeted at the wardresses who twisted her arms behind her and bound them there with stout cords. She planted her naked heels on the stone floor, fighting with all her remaining strength against being dragged to the circle of malignant fire.
One of the wardresses cackled in insane glee as she tore the pink bra from the girl's heaving breasts and then ripped the delicate pink panties from her loins.
Now the girl was forced to kneel on the floor; her head scant inches from the blistering heat of the flames. Somebody produced a glowing poker, touched it to the girl's spine. Her screech of unutterable torment drowned out all other sounds in the room. Her back stiffened, her legs thrashed, her red tongue protruded from her mouth. But with practiced hands, the torturers held her firmly in position. They forced her to lie on the door on her back.
More ropes were wound around: her ankles and the searing iron was applied to the soles of her feet. Madly the girl beat her head against the stone floor in a paroxysm of madness. The stench of burning flesh hung over the crypt like a noxious gas.
Sophia Bruck hung from her own chains, feeling everything her companion in torture felt, awaiting her turn before the howling mob.
Irma Mirau pranced around the chamber, letting the lecherous hands of her male admirers do revolting things to her body. The sounds and smells of the room lent new urgency to her carnal cravings. Once again she was reliving the days of bestiality which had marked her glory in the service of Hitler.
For all her beauty, Irma Mirau had always been a mad sadist. Had she been born in a civilized country, she would have been incarcerated in a hospital for the criminally insane. But Germany had been spawned in madness and perversion. Its leaders were drug addicts, butchers, sadists.
Irma Mirau had found her vile talents and tastes greatly appreciated. She had first been exposed to the new order through Oskar Dirlewanger, the perverted S.S. General whose legion of convicted sex offenders had been formed into a division of Einsatzcommandos.
Dirlewanger had been on leave from his rape of Poland when he had met Irma Mirau at Mueller's Salon Kitty in Berlin. Immediately he had appealed to the perversity of her nature. As he stripped her clothing from her, he had regaled her with choice stories of his actions against the Poles and Russians.
He had held her enthralled by his graphic descriptions. As he had spun his tales of bestiality she had set beside him, cooing and rocking back and forth. She had clutched her own flesh until she had drawn blood.
"If only I could be a part of your world," she had whispered.
“I can arrange it. I can get you a position as wardress at Ravensbruck or Belsen. There you will have ample opportunities to carry out your patriotic duty for the Fatherland," the madman had promised.
And Dirlewanger had made good his promise. Irma Mirau had reported to the woman's compound at Belsen done up in a snug fitting blouse, jodphurs and black riding boots. Her talent for torture knew no bounds. She had herself assigned to the reception committee, demanding that her victims still be strong and relatively healthy.
There was no depravity, no act of barbarity which was beyond her diseased imagination. One of her favorite tricks was to have a young woman captive brought to her compound. There the young girl would have her clothing stripped from her and her wrists bound behind her back. Then her arms would be attached to an overhead rope and then dragged into the air so that her full weight was born by her shoulders.
Not satisfied, Irma would step up to the captive and begin spinning her around until the rope which supported her became knotted. The girl would then spin crazily around.
Irma Mirau did not stop at such excesses. She devised a system of weights which could be attached to her victim's toes, dragging them from their sockets. The outraged howls of her victims was like a love refrain to the madwoman. As they hung in the throes of torture, she disported herself with male guards from the concentration camp. The excesses shown in the compound defied description.
Irma Mirau pranced around the concentration camp in an orgy of glory. Never had life been so good to her. She thought of what absolute victory over the allies would mean to her. Perhaps she would be allowed to head her own camp. There was no telling how far she would rise in Nazidom.
But time was running out for the Reich. On the Eastern Front, the Russian hordes had crawled out of Sevastapol and Stalingrad and swung over to the attack. Their horse-drawn artillery rolled relentlessly forward, crushing everything in its path.
The American and British Armies on the western border ringed Germany in a steel curtain of fire. Festung Europe was a crumbling mass of rubble.
Madness had lent a certain animal intelligence to Irma Mirau. When an animal faces a forest fire, he runs before it. So early in February, 1945, the she beast of Belsen had walked away from the barbed wire entanglements. She had slept with an S.D. lieutenant all the way to Berlin in exchange for transportation. However once the man's usefulness had spent itself, she had placed a bullet in his head and walked away from him. Irma Mirau, like so many other war criminals, had shed her S.S. uniform and identity at the same moment. She had used her body among the Russians and the deposed Nazis for any favors still available.
While the rest of the German population lived out of ash cans, certain high Nazi officials repaired to previously prepared hideaways with their trunks lined with booty from their occupation.
The she beast now turned southward into the Austrian Tyrol. How better to escape detection than to assume the identity of a bereaved housefrau? With confusion at every point, she was perfectly safe just so long as she kept out of the mainstream where allied intelligence might pick her up.
She had found the castle at Dolsach perfect for her purposes. A few discreet inquiries among her erstwhile Gestapo pals showed that the former owner of the site had been liquidated at Dachau shortly before the end of the war.
Irma Mirau played for time. She claimed to be a distant relation of the deposed landlord. She even had forged credentials to prove the point. She set up housekeeping in the castle and waited for developments. They were not long in coming.
From unimpeachable sources, Irma learned that Dirlewanger had defected to the Reds and was now operating with their M.V.D. This was a major break. It would allow her to get back to business as usual.
She spent her days moving among the instruments of torture which she had found in the castle's dungeons. Nothing could have suited her purposes better.
Using her feminine wiles, she was able to hire workmen to put the chamber back into order again.
To a query from one of her Nazi playmates about the danger of discovery, she answered quickly. "There is no morality here. A man will do anything for a bowl of soup. As long as I pay my way, I have nothing to fear."
She had been absolutely right. No avenging arm reached out for her. She traveled to the village with impunity. She even began making trips to Vienna to attend gatherings with other Nazi Werewolves. It was on these visits that she evolved her master plan.
Seeing so many displaced persons wandering aimlessly across the scarred face of Europe, she realized that here was the fodder for her charnel house. If they could be inveigled into coming to the castle, she could make them disappear without a trace. Nobody had time to worry over the nameless ones who had no homes or families.
Irma contacted Carl Braun who ran a small and shoddy employment agency. The agency in reality was a booking service for prostitution. Selling one's body in Vienna was no
longer a thing of immorality. It was merely an expedient means of staying alive.
Together Irma and Braun formed a partnership. The best looking of the young women who sought employment would be referred to her. They would be spirited to Dolsach, far from the protection of the Vienna police.
Now she went about setting up a staff. Hoerst Rascher, a former S.S. sturmbannfuhrer, was made a member of the household guard. Three other sluts who had been in the Hitler Maedchen Korps leaped at the chance to join the neo-Nazis combine.
But Irma was not so patriotic that she presented her blood orgies without benefit of profit. She reasoned – correctly – that there were many wealthy ex-Nazis who longed for the blood baths they had known since the days of the old Munich Beer Halls. With the funds they had secreted, they would be willing to pay very highly to participate in the new order.
Word went out and within a few weeks the Nazi cell had been formed. Once again the sight of women dangling from chains and the sounds of girls screaming over the slow roasting fires lent a debauched cacophony to their lusts.
Dues were set in precious gems since reichmarks meant nothing. And Irma Mirau's vaults swelled to the bursting point. Obtaining girls was the least of her problems. She would interview them at Braun's employment agency, give them bus fare, and promise them a good home, a small salary, and new clothing.
The unsuspecting victims arrived at the castle to a hot bath, a good meal and a delicious bottle of wine. The reception was beyond their wildest dreams.
Only later, as they felt the pincers and the ropes, did they remember the peculiar bitter taste of the wine and the way they had drifted off to sleep immediately after having partaken of it.
But the realization came much too late for their salvation. The dungeon had been carefully sound-proofed.
Sophia Bruck understood this as the fiends cut the chains from her convulsing body. She shrank from them as they tore her bra and panties from her. She screamed for quick death as they placed her straining body on the low slung bench and roped it into position. But death would not be fast – not when it would come at the point of a thousand needles heated to a white pitch which were jabbed into bound flesh.
She screamed until she could scream no more. At last her voice was a continual moan of insane horror. She raised her head and saw what they had done to her and she no longer was capable of sensing pain.
Sophia Bruck died in the underground vault that night, unmourned and unnoticed by any save her torturers. It would be wonderful to say that the forces of retribution finally closed in on Irma Mirau. Unfortunately, such is not the ease.
Late in 1947, Carl Braun was recognized as a war criminal and promptly arrested. Fearful that he might in some way implicate her, Irma approached an M.V.D. friend who had sampled her physical favors and asked him to contact Dirlewanger in Moscow.
Arrangements were made and, after having set fire to the castle of Dolsach, she was spirited through the night in a huge Zim limousine. One can only surmise whether she continued her bestial career under the auspices of her new-found allies.