- Title: Underwater Escape
- Subtitle: An Escape to the Other Gender
- Series: The Fatal Gender Swap
- Author: Yu Sakurazawa
- Gender Swap Type: A woman swaps with a man in the history.
Gemma was caught in the act by Josh, while she was having sex with Max. The next day, before the show, they were still on bad terms with her husband. This is the reason why Gemma became distracted and couldn’t focus on the trick. She started to suffocate under water.
[Introduction] “The Chinese Water Torture Cell” is a show of escaping from predicament and was made famous by Harry Houdini, a Hungarian-American magician born in 1874. As the Chinese Water Toture Cell became so popular, there were many followers who challenged the deadly underwater escape show using replicated structures.
Gemma in this story is a female escape artist known for her Chinese Water Toture Cell performances.
Gemma was not happy in her married life. She was caught by her husband while she was having sex with a friend. That’s why Gemma became distracted and couldn’t focus on her performance in the Chinese Water Torture Cell on the next day. She starts to suffocate under water.
When she was rescued she found herself in a different body.
GEMMA: female main character, escape artist, thirty-two years old, born in 1983.
She is passionate about her job, that’s the center of her life. Her signature trick is the water torture cell (in which she is chained up and locked inside a water filled tank from which she escapes in full view of the audience), what she performs in spectacular shows around the world.
They have an estranged, “neither you, nor without you” type of marriage with Josh. In their intense BDSM sex life Gemma’s submissive nature is caused by her husband’s impulsive and dominant behavior. Gemma had no experience before with men to get to know more about herself, that’s why she had an affair with her colleague, Max.
Although she is unhappy, she’s afraid to divorce Josh because she lacks self-confidence in civil life. All what she wants is to find her own voice and strength and to be independent again, to be the best escape artist she can be.
JOSH: Josh is forty years old, muscular, tall, blond man with blue eyes. He is Gemma’s husband and manager, for whom Gemma is more like a goldmine and a sex slave than a partner. He is so caught up on his ego and the fame, that he is ready to risks Gemma’s life.
MAX: He is twenty-eight years old, African-American, he has mild manners and a very boy-like mind. He has a minor role as Gemma’s lover. He knows that Gemma is not in love with him, but he still cares for her.
HARRY HOUDINI: male main character, illusionist, magician, age thirty-nine, born in 1874.
He is known worldwide, a headline act in vaudeville. He invented the Water Torture Cell, this dangerous and complex trick to beat his competitors.
He has a warm and loving marriage with Bess Houdini.
BESS: She was also a performer before she married Houdini, then she became his stage assistant. She loves his husband but also up for adventures.
[Sample text – less than 10% of the story is shown due to restrictions of KDP]
CHAPTER ONE: There Was a Bull Called Zeus
2015, August 14, 8 p.m., Atlantic City – Aquarium
I push myself off from the edge of the tank and splash into the water. The lid closes over me and two locks click. Part of the audience crosses their fingers, hoping to see some action. The rest of them are fish. This aquarium is the weirdest place I’ve ever performed the Chinese Water Torture Cell act.
The spotlight hits me in the face, and my hands shake. After the fifteen hundredth time, panic is still panic, but I didn’t pay a fortune to my kinesiologist to have a panic attack underwater in front of fifteen hundred people. Relax, imagine the beach, I think to myself.
Waves hit the shore. Huge, blue sky. Sand between my toes. All right, let’s go!
The assistants back away from the tank, waiting, in case something happens. Real escape always comes with a price. I take the pick out of my bun, and my fingers search for the hole on my handcuffs’ lock—Got it!—and the pick plays on the pins. I need steady hands, steadier than what I have now.
Twenty-five years ago, I’d picked my first lock: a pink, heart-shaped one in kindergarten. I’d opened it to get ahold of the seven candies inside. Totally worth the hours, except for the caramel, which I’d spat out. Tasted like shit.
Josh, my husband, manager, and stage assistant, takes a step closer to the tank, his form distorted through the glass. He beats the devil’s tattoo on his watch, signaling that I’m slower than usual. I’d rather punch him, but right now, only the water counts. The almighty water in Houdini’s ghost cage. The first lock gives in. Five more to go.