It was night in Cord City.  The moon was barely visible behind the heavy cloud cover that completely hid the stars.  Dawn was still hours away and most "decent" people were comfortably asleep in their beds.
      Tiffany Sweet was an exception.  She was not asleep; she was not in her bed, and she most definitely was NOT comfortable!  The ropes that held her dug into her flesh and the marble tile of the museum floor was cool against the bare skin of her shapely body as she slid across it.  She was trying to get back to the security station, where she could activate the alarm, which the thieves must have disabled before they jumped her.
      Part of her, she had to admit, was uncomfortable with the idea of activating that alarm.  After all, the alarm would bring the police.  And the police would find her in her current state, which was not an idea she was pleased with.
      Tiffany had been tied up before.  When she was a kid, her cousins, all boys, had constantly devised games that would allow them to bind and torment her...she always assumed that it was their way of seeing if a "mere girl" was tough enough to hang out with them.  And when she had gotten older, she had explored and enjoyed the more erotic side of bondage with a few of her boyfriends, including that guy in her martial arts class that she had been dating off-and-on.  And most of the women she knew secretly hid the fantasy of being captured by some terrible villain and held captive until they were rescued by some dashing, sexy and terribly handsome James-Bond-type of hero.
      Fantasy, however, was much more comfortable than her current reality.  The thieves who had disabled the security system might have gotten out unnoticed if Tiffany hadn't made a detour during her usual rounds to go to the bathroom.  On her way back, someone had grabbed her and held a chloroform-soaked rag over her face.  When she came to, she found herself like this.
      The thieves had taken her uniform, stripping her down to her bra and thong-style panties.  Her wrists had been bound behind her back and her elbows had also been roped together.  Her arms had been bound to her body by cords that went above, below and even between her D-cup sized breasts.  A rope had been wrapped around her waist, with the ends pulled between her legs and anchored on the cords holding her wrists.  Her ankles had been crossed and bound and there were a few twists of rope both above and below her knees.  Finally, a sizable cloth had been stuffed in her mouth and the lower half of her face covered by what felt like duct tape.  Tiffany had then been left in a corner while the thieves made good their escape.
      That was a half-hour ago.  In that time, Tiffany had managed to wriggle, crawl and roll her way through three rooms.  She had to get through one more before she reached the main hall, which would lead her to the lobby and the security desk.  She lay there for a few seconds, her chest heaving as she tried to catch her breath.   Tiffany was in great shape...which would have been obvious to anyone who happened to see her now nearly naked form.  Still, this had been a grueling 30 minutes.  Almost every muscle in her body ached and she was covered in a thin layer of perspiration.  Her wavy long blonde hair, usually worn in a pony-tail for work, had come loose and was plastered to the sides of her head by sweat.  With a sigh of resignation, Tiffany shook her hair back from her face and once again began inching her way to the alarm.  It was going to be a long night.

      Two hours later, Tiffany sat at the security desk, wrapped in an emergency blanket and sipping coffee.  While the police had arrived quickly after she had turned on the alarm, their response after their arrival was a bit annoying.   First they had photographed the crime scene, including the bound and gagged Tiffany,  "for the report."  It seemed like a lot of photos to her.  Once they had shot two rolls of film, they were awful slow about freeing her from her captivity and even slower about getting something to cover her up with.  Finally, they had spent an awful long time going over the videos from the security cameras, and she could swear she heard one patrolman telling the technician to be sure he got a copy of the tapes.
      Police Chief Anderson walked back to the security desk after touring the crime scene.  He had an envelope in his hand.
      "I suppose, in this situation, that you might want to blame yourself, Miss Sweet.  Don't.  These thieves were the best."
      "So you know who they are?" Tiffany asked.
      Chief Anderson nodded.  "I suspected it when I heard that it was a collection of royal dolls that was taken, but this confirmed it."   He reached into the envelope and pulled out a paper doll.  "You were the victim of Doll Face's gang."
      "Who the hell is Doll Face?"
      "Nobody knows for sure.  The name has been popping up all over town lately in connection with a string of crimes that usually involve dolls, toys, things like that.  But her gang is well trained and, to the best of our knowledge, always successful."
      "Well, I'd love to get even with her and her gang," Tiffany said.  "If there's anything I can do, let me know."
      Chief Anderson smiled.  "I know your dad was a cop, but you're not.  Relax and leave this to the professionals."

      "Leave this to the professionals."
      Tiffany was still fuming when she got back to work two nights later.  She appreciated the managers insisting that she take a day off to recover from her ordeal, but she wondered if she might still be so mad if she hadn't had an extra day to stew in her own juices.  She knew now that she HAD to find a way to get her hands on this "Doll Face," both to get even and to show up Chief Anderson.  He may be a good cop, but he was just too conventional.   Her dad had always told her that unconventional thinking was the only way to catch an unconventional crook.   And the research she had done yesterday indicated that Doll Face was VERY unconventional.
      "I'd love to show them," Tiffany muttered as she passed through the Myths and Legends room.  "Sometimes the best man for the job is a woman.  And I really want to nail that crook Doll Face!"
      "I can show you how," the voice said.
      Tiffany whirled around, drawing her gun.  She sure as hell wasn't about to have a repeat of the other night.   "Who said that?" she demanded.
      "Relax, little one," the voice said.  Tiffany knew it was crazy, but it seemed to be coming from that statue...the one that was supposed to be of some patron goddess of Atlantis.  "I am the Topaz Queen.  If you want to prove the power of women and battle injustice, I can give you the means."
      Tiffany holstered her gun and stepped up to the statue.  "What do I have to do?" she asked.
      "Simply follow the consecration ritual and become my champion.  In the days of Atlantis there were many women who wished to join the Gemstone Warriors.  Now they are gone and I am forgotten.  But I offer you the chance to battle evil as my warriors once did."
      Tiffany thought for only a second before she answered,  "I accept."

      It was a week later before Tiffany was able to perform the ritual...a week during which the Doll Face gang committed two more crimes.  Tiffany was now kneeling naked before the statue, surrounded by a dozen golden candles in a circle.  She had bathed earlier in the day with topaz gems in the water and had eaten nothing but fruits and vegetables for the last three days.  As she neared the end of the incantation, she felt a sense of power replacing the sense of absurdity she had felt when she started.
      Suddenly the statue began to glow with an unearthly light and the base split apart, opening on seam that had been invisible until now.   "Arise, my champion," the voice said.   "Arise and take the vestments of your new office as Topaz Warrior."
      Tiffany stood up and took out the clothes that rested within the statue's base.  As she stepped back, the secret compartment closed so tightly that there was no longer any evidence that an opening had once existed there.
      "So long as you wear the magic topaz on this belt, your strength, speed and agility will be increased five-fold.  Your wounds will heal at an amazing rate.  You will be guided by a knowing beyond knowing.  Always remember, however, that you are still a mortal woman, with all the frailties that that implies.  Now, go and serve the cause of justice."
      The glow faded, leaving Tiffany standing naked in the room, which now seemed dark in the glow of the candles.   She also suddenly realized how chilly it seemed.  Rather than put on her uniform again, however, she decided that she HAD to try out these new  "vestments."   She blew out the candles and headed for the bathroom.

      Tiffany stood admiring herself in the full-length mirror with mixed emotions.  On the one hand, she had to admit that the outfit she had been given made her look great.  The body of the suit was yellow and resembled a teddy with wide straps.   The material, which looked like a cross between spandex and plastic, was very comfortable--sensual even--as it clung to every curve like a second skin, her ample cleavage clearly visible above the low-cut neckline.  There were sky-blue strips along the neck, arm and leg holes.  The magic topaz belt was a matching blue with a large golden topaz set in the center.  The belt, which was a wide diamond shape in the front, fastened seamlessly in the back and was so tight that it was almost like a mini-corset.  Fishnet stockings, yellow gloves and high-heeled boots with blue trim on the ends and a yellow mask completed the ensemble.  With her long honey-blonde hair hanging loose, Tiffany looked incredibly sexy.
      On the other hand, the outfit made her look like, like...
      "Oh, hell, just admit it," she said to herself.  "You look like a comic book superheroine!"
      While the "sensible adult" in her chaffed at the look, she had to wonder if this was necessarily a bad thing.  After all, if she was looking for an unconventional way to chase Doll Face, this was it!  Besides, one of the games that she had most loved playing with her cousins was superheroes.  She had always liked Supergirl, Wonder Woman, Batgirl and all the others.  She enjoyed reading about these powerful, sexy women in their scanty costumes, falling into wonderfully kinky situations.  Getting to act out those scenarios in her swimsuit with a towel tied around her neck had been fun.  Now she was given an opportunity to HAVE those adventures that she'd dreamed about.  How could she turn that down?
      Tiffany stuffed the mask, boots and gloves into her oversize purse and pulled her uniform on over the rest of the costume.  After all, that was the way superheroes hid their costumes and she knew that she HAD to do this.  There were a few details that she had to work out first, but soon the world would be introduced to it's latest defender: Lady Topaz!

      Tiffany awoke with a start.  She had had that same weird dream, the one with birds committing crimes.  Suddenly she had a thought: could this be part of the "knowing beyond knowing" that the Topaz Queen had mentioned?  She swung from the bed, ran to living room and turned on her computer.  She accessed the city records through the modem and called up any failed businesses that still had property in the area.  She began to scroll through the list.
      She felt a tickling on her shapely ankles and leaned over to pick up the white tabby that was rubbing up against her.
      "Sorry to wake you, Dickens," she told the cat.   "I just have a hunch... Aha!  'Golden Goose Doll Factory.'  It may be a long-shot, but I'd better check it out.  Or better yet, Lady Topaz had better check it out!"
      Tiffany carried Dickens back to her bedroom and then grabbed her full-length mirror.  She flicked the hidden catch as she pulled, and it swung out revealing the hidden room.  When she had rented the apartment in this old brownstone, she had been told that this room was used to store bootleg liquor during the prohibition.   Up until recently, Tiffany had used it for extra storage.  But now it served as Lady Topaz's secret lair!
      The room was small, but large enough for her needs.   There was a small make-up table and chair, another full-length mirror, and her new transportation.  Tiffany peeled off the T-shirt and panties that she had been sleeping in and lifted her costume from the hook on which it hung.  She sat on the chair's padded seat and slid the fishnets up over her shapely legs, smoothing them as she went.  Then she stepped into the bodysuit, slid the straps up over her shoulder and, inhaling slightly, zipped the tight outfit up the back.
      Tiffany had been working out in the outfit for the past few days in order to "get the feel" of it.  She had quickly learned that it was so skimpy and tight that if she wore underwear, it would either slip out or cause unsightly bulges.  As she stood in front of the mirror, slid her hands along her body and cupped her firm, full breasts, she reminded herself that there was another factor involved.   This odd Atlantean fabric felt so sensual against her skin that she really didn't WANT anything to come between her and it!
      Tiffany shook her head to clear it.  No time for pleasure!  She quickly pulled on her boots, gloves and mask, paused to grin at the sexy, dynamic reflection that appeared in the mirror, and walked over to her new Topaz-cycle.  She had bought this motor scooter and had a friend put a flared cowling on it.  Then she had painted it yellow with blue trim and glued some topaz gems around the headlamp.  She donned a yellow helmet trimmed with topazes on the forehead, hopped onto the cycle and roared out the secret entrance, into the night.

      Lady Topaz had barely pulled up and parked her Topaz-cycle when she noticed something odd: light shone through the skylight of this supposedly "abandoned" building.  She realized that there was so little nighttime traffic in the warehouse district that this would have gone unnoticed by anyone who wasn't looking for it.   Lady Topaz glided silently over to the building's fire escape, climbed to the roof and looked in the skylight.
      Inside, she saw a young woman who appeared to be undergoing a rather bizarre form of torture.  The lovely brunette was standing with her back to a yellow wall.   Her arms were at her sides, and some kind of blocks under the heels of her bare feet caused her to sand on tiptoe.  Red wires at her ankles, wrists and waist held her in this position.  A bright light shone on her, and the hint of a glare convinced Lady Topaz that the girl had clear tape over her mouth.  There was something vaguely familiar about the scene, but then it hit herÖ the lass had been tied up in the same way that "Barbie" dolls are attached to their boxes!
      "This Doll-face is really taking her toy fetish too far," Lady Topaz muttered as she pulled open the skylight.  She leapt into the room, using her increased strength and agility to slow her descent by grasping and swinging on light fixtures, pipes, shelves, whatever was handy.  She landed next to the captive and, after a quick glance around to be sure they were alone, worked on freeing the helpless girl.  "Relax, Iíll have you free in a jiffy," she said.
      "Oh, god, thank you!" the girl said as the tape was pulled from her lips.  "That woman grabbed me, and brought me here!  Iíve been tied up like that for hours!"
      Lady Topaz motioned for the girl to be quiet as she moved towards the door.  "Well, itís a cinch that you canít go out the way I came in, but weíll find a way.  Stick closeÖ"
      Suddenly, the lovely masked blonde felt a crashing blow to the back of her head.  She sank to her knees and glanced up, to see the woman she had just rescued standing over her with a hunk of two-by-four.  Before Lady Topaz could do anything, she saw the wood coming at herÖ then she sank into darkness, and saw nothing more.

      The first sight that greeted Lady Topaz as she slowly regained consciousness was a face.  It was a slightly attractive face, but the novice superheroine decided that it had to be a dollís face.  The eyes were a bit too wide; the lips a bit too full, the cheeks a bit to red for it to be real.  Therefore, she was shocked when the face smiled and spoke!
      "About time you woke up," the redheaded woman said.  "Iím very upset with you, you know.  Chatty Patty was being punished, and you set her loose!  Luckily, she was smart enough to not let you interfere with our plans!"
      "Chatty Patty," the girl Lady Topaz had tried to rescue, walked into the heroineís field of vision, smiled and waved.  "Comfy?" she asked.
      The answer, of course, was "no," but Lady Topaz couldnít tell her that.  In fact, with the heavy wadding stuffed in her mouth and the thick cloth cleaved between her teeth, she couldnít tell anyone anything!  Her booted ankles had been tied together, as had her knees.  Her wrists were bound and fastened to a rope that went between her legs and then wrapped around her waist.  Ropes encircled her torso just below her breasts, pinning her arms to her sides.  She was laying on some sort of conveyor belt, and visions of "The Perils of Pauline" entered her head as she tugged on the ropes.
      "I was the worldís greatest expert on dolls," Doll Face continued.  "I even had surgery so I could resemble my little babies.  Then the government took my dolls away, just because I didnít pay my taxes!  Well, Iíll show them!  When Iím done, Iíll have the greatest collection of dolls EVER!"
      "Ummmmph hmmmm ummmmgggph!" Lady Topaz said into her gag.  Somehow, her pathetic muffled whimpers werenít as satisfying as the "youíre one sick witch" that it was meant to be!
      "Of course," Doll Face continued as she ran her finger up and down Lady Topazís bound body, "to have a TRULY great collection, I need some unique pieces.  Thatís why Iíve invented a way to turn people into dolls!"
      The captive superheroine paused in her struggles to hear this.  There was no doubt that her captor was totally insane.  Perhaps this would lead her to make a mistake.  But, for Lady Topaz to take advantage of that mistake, she had to know what she facedÖ
      "Itís really quite simple, but I havenít had a chance to try it yet.  Youíll be my test case!  See, youíll move down this belt, under a spray of clear porcelain.  Then, youíll be deposited into the kiln and baked until the porcelain hardensÖ about 3 hours at 500 degrees.  Then, viola, a masked interloper doll!  Now, Chatty Patty!  Go get Betsy Wetsy.  We have to go plan who I can use this process onÖ"
      The two villainesses walked away, and the conveyor belt started carrying Lady Topaz towards her doom!  Except she didnít feel much like the dynamic Lady Topaz any more.  She felt like plain old Tiffany Sweet, and she DID NOT want to die!  She wanted even less to become a china doll in this psychoticís playroom.  The first order of business, then, had to be getting off this conveyor.  She wasnít tied down, but a lip along the sides of the belt prevented her just rolling off.  It looked hopeless, until she remembered that she wasnít just Tiffany Sweet anymore!  And Lady Topaz could do things Tiffany couldnítÖ
      When she neared the nozzle for the porcelain spray, Lady Topaz swung her legs up, followed by her body, until she was balanced on her shoulders and her head.  She wrapped her feet around the pipe, trapping it between her toes and the ropes on her ankles.  As the spray activated and coated the heroineís backside, the costumed cutie used all her strength to bend her body forward at the waist, lifting it off the conveyor of doom!  After a few swings, she let go of the pipe, allowing her momentum to carry her off to the side, free of the conveyor belt!  She landed hard, and grimaced at the pain.  Next she began to crawl back towards the conveyor belt, planning to use the gears of the mechanism to slice her bonds.  Then she planned to teach Doll Face a lesson!

      Doll Face studied the list of Cord Cityís best and brightest.  Politicians, models and entertainers were all listed.  They would make a wonderful collection!  "Now," she said to her two associates, "where to startÖ"
      "Start?" a voice called out.  "Iíve got news for you: youíre finished!"
      The villainous trio glanced up to see their yellow-clad nemesis standing in the doorway, her hands on her hips.  "Sheís escaped!" Doll Face cried.  "Get that cow!"
Lady Topaz rushed forward to meet the assault.  As she grabbed Betsy and Patty, she growled, "My name is Lady Topaz, you whacko!  Remember it!"  Then she slammed the two henchwomen together, headfirst.  The women crumpled to the ground as the blonde adventuress brushed her hands off and stepped towards their boss.
      Doll Face reached below the desk and pulled out a Mega-Squirter water gun.  "This is filled with a highly corrosive acid that would melt that lovely flesh right off your bones!" she hollered.   "Donít come any closer!"
      Lady Topaz had noticed that her sixth sense seemed to give her some insight into what her opponents were going to do.  So she stepped forward, knowing that her timing had to be perfect.  Then, at the moment Doll Face pulled the trigger, the heroine leaped upward, vaulting over the stream of acid.  As she came down, her foot knocked the gun aside and her fist slammed into her enemyís garish face.

      An hour later, police and reporters all showed up at the old factory, having been called by an anonymous voice on the phone.  As they surrounded the place, they heard someone calling "Yoo  hoo!" from the roof.  Spotlights, cameras and video units all focused up to see a woman in a sexy yellow and blue costume standing on the edge of the roof.  Below her, three bound women hung from a rope.
      "Hereís the Doll Face gang, boys," the blonde called.  "Courtesy of Lady Topaz!"  Before anyone could react, Lady Topaz leapt off the roof, using the fire escape, flag pole and awnings to give her purchase as she swung to the ground, jumped on her cycle and roared away.  The newly born superheroine smiled.  She needed a shower, and her costume needed to be washed, but that exit made it all worthwhile!  She was looking forward to seeing it on the news.  And she was looking forward to her next adventure!

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