Darren’s mouth gaped open when the vicar strode to a cupboard and took from it a whippy school cane which he swished through the air a couple of times before intoning, “Bend over that chair.”
“B.. b.. but,” he stammered.
“Do it now, I don’t have all day,” the vicar swished the cane once more.
Darren stood his ground, unsure what he should do.
Swish! Swish! the cane flew through the air. The vicar was a powerful man, as befitted someone who once played prop forward at rugby. His steel grey searching eyes fixed on Darren, his jaw locked in a scowl. People said of the vicar that he had ‘presence,’ and when he fixed you with his glare, you were powerless to resist.
The vicar was not about to take any nonsense from Darren. The vicar had complete authority and he would use it. At the moment his rattan crook-handled cane was the symbol of that authority. Darren would submit to it and to the vicar before he was set free.
They were in the study at the vicar’s home. It was a large room in a huge house. The Church spared no expense on the comforts of its vicars. Book-laden shelves ran along three walls. There were hundreds, possibly thousands, of books, enough to stock a small-town library. The scholastic atmosphere they generated might impress visitors, but most had lain unread for many years. The only time they felt a human hand was when Mrs Grey the cleaning woman wiped the dust from them.
Cupboards and a large picture window took up the fourth wall. Darren looked beyond the vicar into the sumptuous garden as he ran over the vicar’s demand in his mind.
The chair the vicar wanted him to lower himself across was made of expensive soft leather. It would be very comfortable to bend over, but once Darren had done this he knew what followed would be far from comfortable.
Swish! Swish! the vicar was growing impatient.
The vicar was no stranger to corporal punishment. He was from God-fearing folk and genuinely believed in the Bible: all of it. He lived by the adage, “spare the rod and spoil the child” and he had not spared his own son Adam from the lash.
His preferred method with his nineteen-year-old son was a heavy thick leather strap, applied with great vigour to Adam’s quivering naked buttocks. The vicar had a ritual. First he would list in the minutest detail the boy’s faults followed by admonishments. Then, on bended knees they would pray together for forgiveness. The prayers were always answered, but atonement had to come before forgiveness.
The lashings were brutal. They always took place in the vicar’s bedroom. Without awaiting instruction, Adam would pile pillows four deep in the centre of the bed. Then he stripped completely naked. While he disrobed, his father took the razor strop from its moorings, a hook on the inside door of the wardrobe.
The boy climbed on the pillows, his face buried in the eiderdown, his buttocks pointing at the ceiling. There was always a pause; it felt like hours to Adam, but it was only a minute. His father was praying to God again, this time to give him the extra strength to whip the boy good and hard.
Adam clenched his teeth shut. No matter how hard his father flogged him, he never cried out. Over the years his ability to resist pain had reached truly remarkable levels.
The strap rose and fell twenty-four times; his father swiped so ferociously he might have thought he was beating a carpet. No dust was raised on Adam’s buttocks, only ugly red wheals as over and over the leather thundered into his cheeks.
Then it was over. Adam’s eyes shone as he crawled off the bed and shakily stood beside his father, who was still holding the razor strop. His backside was blistered and the agony would be shooting through his body. Quite often by the end of these punishment sessions Adam was utterly disoriented, unsure of his whereabouts, and his father had to guide him back to his own bedroom.
But before he was allowed to leave, there was one more prayer to be said: to thank God for his mercy.
Swish! “You are wasting my time and your own!”
Darren shuddered in terror. The vicar’s stare held him transfixed.
“B.. b.. b.. but can’t we talk about this? Do we …” Darren trailed off. The position he found himself in was so utterly unexpected. How could he reason with the vicar?
“I … I…,” but words would not come for Darren. His senses had deserted him. He wanted to say he was sorry, but his ‘crime’ did not merit a thrashing with a whippy cane. That is what he wanted to say, but he could not find the words.
The vicar stalked him, cane in hand, his piercing grey eyes burning holes in Darren’s brain.
“Over the chair!” he barked. Blood seemed to drain from Darren’s body and his face was ghostly pale.
That was when Darren lost his mind. Thinking about it later he realised he should have pushed his way past the vicar and fled from the house. Nobody would have blamed him. It would have been the sensible thing to do.
But, by now ‘sense’ had nothing to do with it.
Instead of running to freedom, Darren took a huge deep breath filling his lungs with air. Then, he stepped forward and like a swimmer diving into an icy pool, he hurled himself over the back of the chair.
The weight of his body sank into the plush padded chair. His face was so close to the seat cushion, the aroma of luxurious expensive leather made him gag.
Darren closed his eyes in anticipation of the whacking he was about to receive, so he did not see, but he could hear, the vicar in prayer. The huge man was muttering something about penitence and forgiveness.
Moments later he felt the vicar tug at the elasticated waist of his trousers, pulling them and his underpants to his knees in one complete movement. Darren’s naked buttocks made a perfect target for the vicar’s cane.
It was over in seconds. Swipe! Swipe! Swipe! The vicar flogged the cane into Darren’s cheeks. Never before had the vicar whipped a boy so hard. His entire heart and his soul went into the effort.
Then a further three swipes followed one after another, rapidly like pistol shots.
Darren howled as the first cut took his arse off and he did not stop screaming until long after the sixth and final whop! lashed into him.
The yells echoed round the study and throughout the house. It was convenient that the study was at the back of the house, so Darren’s cries did not reach the ears of pedestrians in the street outside, for surely one of them would have phoned the police, believing a murder was taking place.
Darren clung on to the soft seat cushion for his dear life and stamped his feet up and down, like a soldier on sentry duty. The six-of-the-best was delivered without pause and it was over before he could even think of hauling himself from the chair to run screaming from the room.
His once pale face had turned a deadly puce colour. Tears and snot cascaded down his face and he gulped in air in an effort to fill his lungs and stop himself collapsing.
Without waiting for permission he pulled himself to his feet. The agony in his buttocks was terrific and he could hardly stay upright. Gingerly he touched his cheeks with the tips of his fingers, thinking it might relieve some of the pain, but just the slightest contact with his throbbing flesh sent new shockwaves of agony coursing through his body.
The vicar sank to his knees to once again converse with God. Darren saw his chance and still wracked with pain, he pulled his trousers and pants up and staggered from the room. Then, bouncing once or twice off the walls in the hallway, he opened the front door and escaped.
He breathed in deeply, filling his lungs with fresh air and this helped to calm him, but his escape was not yet complete. Standing where he had left it, only five minutes previously, was his motor scooter. Wincing with each step he walked to it and grabbed the handlebars.
This was useless, he realised. There was no way he could ride it away. The ache in his arse was as bad as ever. He would find it difficult to walk for some considerable time to come, never mind sit down.
He looked behind him, expecting at any moment to see the vicar dashing from the house to chase after him. He must act quickly. Having no choice, he released the foot stand and with some difficulty started to push the bike towards the road.
He paused, unsure where he should go. He looked to the left and to the right. He really wanted to turn right, to go home, so he could explore and then treat his wounds.
But he really needed to keep his job. So, instead of going home he tuned left and headed back to Stafford’s Pizza House. His buttocks blazed with every step he took: a reminder of what can happen if you deliver a customer’s order twenty minutes late.
Other stories involving clergymen you might like.
More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website
Charles Hamilton the Second