Nicholas Pierce was out of control. He needed to be reined in. Someone would surely get killed if he wasn’t stopped.
Joan and Pete Willis looked out of their bedroom window to the suburban street below. Parked outside the house opposite was a brand new sports car with its nearside light caved in and a deep dent on the fender.
“I bet he was loaded,” Joan sighed.
“Or on drugs, maybe?” Nicholas asked it as a question, but he was pretty certain the nineteen-year-old was high most of the time.
“We have to do something,” Joan said, as she slipped into her robe and made her way downstairs to prepare breakfast.
“Yes, we do,” Pete mused silently, and his heart beat a little faster at the prospect.
Nicholas Pierce wasn’t a bad boy, not really. He had been a smart kid and a credit to his family. That was until the tragedy happened. His pop David had a heart attack. On a crowded train. He just keeled over. Bang. Dead before he hit the floor.
David was ex-military. Quite a hard case. His wife had passed years earlier and there was only he and Nicholas left. He doted on the boy. He loved him so much he wasn’t afraid to tan his ass. Good. Hard. Often. Youngsters needed discipline. Parents had to set them boundaries. That’s how they would grow to responsible adults.
He loved his son so much that he provided for him well. The body had scarcely been cremated before Nicholas found out just how much. One insurance policy paid off the mortgage, another provided a monthly income. The military paid a gratuity. The kid was made. If he invested wisely, he’d never have to work again.
“Breakfast’s ready!” Joan called her husband down to the kitchen.
Pete shuffled into the kitchen, deep in thought.
“It would never have happened if David were still alive.” He didn’t have to explain what he meant. The couple both liked David; they had known him for ten years, since they first moved into the street. They doted on Nicholas as he was growing up. And now this. It damn near broke their hearts.
In the ten months since David left us, Nicholas had gone from bad to worse. He quit college, bought an expensive sports car and partied his life away. Joan and Pete had a bird’s eye view of it all. A different girl every time.
“So, are you going to do something about it?” It sounded like an accusation to Pete. Was his wife saying Nicholas’s behavior was his fault?
Joan bustled with the coffee cups; rattling them down on the diner top. “You know what David would have done if he were still here,” she trailed off a little. She had liked the ex-military guy very much indeed.
“You think I should ….?” David had barely started the sentence before his wife butted in.
“You betcha. And do it today.”
Pete’s throat drained of saliva. He tried to sip his coffee but it was too hot. “I guess we should wait for him to sober up a little,” he croaked.
Three hours later, at a little after noon, Pete crossed the street. He paused in front of the car. The damage was worse than he had first thought. It had hit something at great force. He knelt down for a closer inspection. Thankfully, he could see no blood.
He didn’t look back at his own house, but he knew his wife Joan was spying on him. She would be hidden behind the drapes checking.
He pressed the doorbell and listened for signs of life. Nothing. He tried again. Still no movement inside the house. This could take some time. He pressed his thumb on the bell and left it there.
He waited. And waited.
At last, through the opaque glass of the door he could just make out a figure. Moments later the door inched open and two bleary blue eyes greeted him.
“Huh?” Nicholas blinked into the sunlight. “Huh?” He was incapable of coherent speech.
Pete pushed at the door, forcing the nineteen-year-old back into the house.
“What the …?” The teen only just stopped himself uttering a profanity. He still remembered some of his pop’s teachings.
It was Pete’s turn to be speechless. The boy was naked except for his underwear that was stained at the front. He hadn’t shaved for days and his face had a ghostly grey-white pallor as if he hadn’t seen the sun in weeks.
Nicholas ran his fingers thought his hair and scratched his head vigorously, like he was chasing lice from his scalp.
The room was a mess. Shirts, underwear and pants had been thrown all over. Half eaten take-outs littered the floor. Pete’s nostrils twitched at a musty smell. Had a mouse crawled under the couch and died?
“Hey!” Pete snapped his fingers in front of the boy’s nose. “Hey, can you hear me?” He struggled to keep his composure. He hadn’t known Nicholas was in such bad shape. It shamed him; what would his friend David say if he knew he had allowed his only son to get into this state.
“Hey! Look at me,” Pete tried again, but Nicholas only stopped scratching his head and dug his fingers into his arms.
Panicking, Pete grabbed the boy’s arm to see his veins. Jeez. Clean. No needle marks. For now.
It strengthened Pete’s resolve. “Right. You. Clear up this mess,” he waved his arms to take in the whole room. “Then take a shower, have a shave. Put on some clean clothes.”
The boy’s scratching continued.
“Are you listening to me!”
Nicholas’s grunted response could have said, “Yes,” or it could have said, “No,” but Pete refused to be deterred.
Pete’s eyes flared. “I’m coming back at four o’clock and you and me are going to have a little talk, young man.”
Nicholas stopped his scratching. “A little talk.” That’s what his pop used to say. A little talk, but very little “talking” ever got done.
“Four o’clock. Be ready.”
On the dot of four, Pete was back at the house. More than three hours had passed, but you would never know it. Nicholas was still in his dirty underwear and the mess was untouched.
Pete knew exactly what David would do if he were here and Nicholas knew too. Pete owed it to David to take action. Darn, he owed it to Nicholas as well.
It was a short lecture. The word “irresponsible” was used more than once. Nicholas stood motionless. He even stopped scratching. He knew where this was going.
“Your dad would be ashamed to see the state you’ve gotten yourself into,” Pete said wearily.
Nicholas’s eyes flickered at the sound of his pop’s name. He glared at the sticky carpet beneath his feet.
“Right,” Pete’s impatience was showing. “Get cleaned up. Take a shower. Shave. Then get back here.”
Nicholas’s shoulders twitched but he showed no sign of moving.
“Do it now,” Pete growled.
If Pete expected resistance, he didn’t get it. The teen shuffled from foot to foot and then turned on his heels and left the room.
Pete could hear the water cascading in the shower. Good, at last he was getting a response from the boy. He paced the room anxiously. What would David had done if he were here, he wondered.
What would he have done? It was a pointless question. His great friend the military man wouldn’t have let it get to this. The paddle would have been flying at the first sign Nicholas was off the rails. No way would he let his son drink and smoke his life away.
Pete owed it to his friend. He had to take charge. He had to save Nicholas.
Ten minutes later, the boy re-entered the room. His hair was still damp and he held a grimy bath towel around his waist. Otherwise, he was completely naked.
The warm water from the shower seemed to have woken the boy up.
Pete’s heart raced. He was anxious to get on with this. “What would your father do if he saw the state you were in today?”
Nicholas’s pale face reddened.
“Well?” Pete’s anger flared. “Answer me!”
Nicholas knew very well what his pop would do, but he wasn’t about to tell.
“He’d take a paddle to your ass; that’s what he would do,” Pete answered his own question.
The teen’s eyes moistened, but he remained head bowed, blinking at the floor.
“Doh! I’ve had enough of this. Go fetch the paddle.” And then to forestall an argument, he added, “I know you have one.”
Without raising his head, Nicholas once more shuffled from the room, his right hand clinging tightly to the bath towel, to stop it slipping to his knees.
Moments later he returned and not looking Pete in the eye he handed over the wood. Pete weighed it in his hand. It was a magnificent specimen. Heavy dark polished oak. Two rows of holes had been drilled in it so it would fly through the air. A real professional had made this. It was so unlike the Board of Education Pete kept at his own home. This one would pack a punch like no other.
The boy’s eyes were dull; his thoughts were somewhere else.
“How would your dad spank you?”
“How? Over the knee, the back of the couch? You grabbing your ankles?”
“Huh?” The teen shrugged his shoulders as if he couldn’t remember.
Pete rubbed at the smooth polished wood. He knew from his own experience as a loving father how this should be done.
“Drop that towel. Bend over the couch.” It was a simple order. At first the teen appeared not to hear. Then as if waking from a stupor he blinked fast, sucked in breath and turned.
Pete ran his hand over the beautifully-polished wood. His own heartbeat was racing. He watched on as Nicholas released his hold on the towel and carefully placed both hands on the back of the couch. He paused momentarily as if he were debating with himself whether to go through with this. Good sense must have prevailed because he lent forward to rest his stomach on the apex of the couch and stretch his arms out ahead of him.
His nose pressed hard into the dusty seat cushion. Without waiting for instruction, he spread his legs wide and straightened his knees. That was how pop made him do it.
Only now did Pete see how unnaturally thin the boy was; his ribs easily visible through his skin, his buttocks not much more than loosely-covered bone.
If this was to work, Pete knew without a doubt, he had to whip the boy into the middle of next week. The spanking might be an act of love, but “love taps” would not do. This must be a blistering the boy would never want repeated.
He stood to the boy’s left, stretched out his arm and placed the paddle gently so that it caressed both cheeks equally. He was rewarded with two quivering buttocks. Nicholas sucked in his breath; waiting. Waiting for the agony, he knew would be inflicted by his pop’s favorite paddle.
Pete tap, tap, tapped the wood. Then he brought it back by about a foot and using strong wrist action he crashed it down into the skin and bone that was Nicholas’s rear end. A dark pink rectangle immediately appeared. The teen gasped as air rushed through his throat and out his mouth making a long drawn-out hissing noise.
Number two fell an inch or so lower, followed without hesitation by number three. Already, the whole of Nicholas’s backside was colored deep pink.
Whack! Whack! Whack! Three more sank into what little meat there was and bounced off. Nicholas held tight to a dirty couch cushion and shut his teeth tightly. That hurt. Christ that hurt so much.
Three more whipped down. Pete liked to paddle at a steady pace. Three at a time. Then a moment for them to sink in. Then another three.
The deep pink quickly turned to red. Nicholas’s feet marched up and down; his knees buckled and involuntarily (because he knew he deserved this whipping) his feet kicked back at his punisher.
He was rewarded by three swats on the back of the thighs; probably the most sensitive part of a boy’s anatomy when he is offering himself for a spanking.
That did it. The yowl! he screamed spread around the room. Nicholas’s hips swayed from side to side and his feet marched up and down like a demented soldier on sentry duty.
Bang! Bang! Bang! The teen’s head bounced up and down as he head-butted the couch cushion. Sweat poured from his naked body, running in a rivulet down his spine. His face was almost as red as his ass.
Another three and he was screaming so loudly, Pete feared his wife Joan might hear from across the street.
Tears streamed down his face and snot ran from his nose. His body heaved as he tried desperately to draw air into his lungs.
The center of each cheek had dark purple bruises and blood was beginning to seep. After three more, they looked like raw hamburger meat.
“Arghh!” Nicholas tried, oh how he tried to take his spanking like a man. That was how his pop had taught him it had to be. But nothing, no paddling or switching he had ever endured from his pop had prepared him for this.
Splat! Splat! Splat! On and on it went.
“Ple…ase, no more!” It wasn’t pleading it was wailing. Nicholas was spent. He had nowhere else to go. The agony that started in the center of each cheek travelled up and down his legs and then east, west, north and south through his whole body. His heart beat so fast he was certain blood would soon rush out from his ears.
Then it was over. Pete stood back. Sweat poured down his back and his shirt and the waistband of his pants were soaked. His own breathing was heavy, but as he once again rubbed the palm of his hand across the smooth polished surface of his wood, it was getting under control.
He paused to observe the teen he had thrashed. Nicholas still lay head down, ass high over the couch, gasping for air like a fish out of water. His back and shoulders heaved as he sobbed and sobbed into the cushion.
He was mumbling something Pete couldn’t quite hear. It sounded like, “Sorry pop. I’m sorry.”
“You should get up now,” Pete put the paddle down on the dining table and prepared to leave. His job was done.
He reached for the door to let himself out of the house, turning as he closed it behind him. He just glimpsed a distraught and broken nineteen-year-old man, bent double as he tried to ease the agony in his flesh. Even the gentle touch of his fingertips was too much; he was toasted. He should be lucky if he could sit in any comfort for a week.
Pete slowly crossed the street. He saw his wife at the window. It was shortly after four in the afternoon, but he hoped she would permit him to down a stiff whisky.
Behind him in the house, Nicholas, still totally naked, scooped up an armful of discarded take-out cartons.
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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website
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