Luke was a fine young man, all the neighbours agreed. He was polite and respectful to his elders. He did as he was told without question. The wooden paddle his father kept hanging from a nail in the den saw to that.
He was a regular at church. He read the Bible each day and believed every word of it. He didn’t hang around the new shopping mall with other youth. He didn’t wear jeans and tee-shirts, nor grease his hair. He didn’t listen to rock’n’roll records. He never spoke with negroes.
He didn’t do too well at school, but he could write and count some and that was good enough for Mr. Kennedy. Mr. Kennedy and his wife had a “mom and pop” hardware store. It wasn’t big, but it did alright and they hired Luke as a store assistant. Kennedy admired Luke. His fair, almost blond hair. The eighteen-year-old’s sparkling grey eyes and clear skin. Luke’s snake hips and the way his grey pants clung to them. Yes, Mr. Kennedy agreed with his community; Luke was a fine young man indeed.
It got so Mr. Kennedy thought of Luke as the son he never had. Sure, he had daughters and they were the prettiest girls a father could wish for. But they weren’t sons. A man had to have a boy. Everyone at his church agreed with that.
It darn near broke Mr. Kennedy’s heart (or so he told Luke) the day he was forced to act as a father. Fathers had duties. To their children. Their community. And, to God above. Mr. Kennedy knew that and Luke had learned it also at his father’s knee. There were small things. Mr. Kennedy noticed how Luke was tardy when he arrived at work and took too long getting into his brown store coat. He didn’t pounce from his chair with sufficient vigour the very moment a customer walked through the shop door. Once, he gave someone the wrong change. It cost Mr. Kennedy a dollar. That was the final straw.
“It breaks my heart to do this son,” he told Luke dolefully, “But I am going to have to spank you.” Then he added hastily, “It is for your own good, you do understand that?”
Luke didn’t really understand. Grown-ups confused him. He always obeyed them, no matter what. His father had taught him that. But sometimes, he just didn’t get it. Only two weeks previously he was in trouble with Mr. Andrews, a neighbour. Luke had taken to counting the knotholes on the trees in the street. He had done seven when Mr. Andrews strode out angrily to confront him.
“What are you doing outside my house? Spying?” he berated the boy. Luke mumbled an apology, but he wasn’t sure what he had done wrong.
“Get in here you!” Mr. Andrews grabbed the teenager by the ear and frogmarched him into the garage. The old man sat on a stool, pulled the boy towards him and without a word, unbuttoned Luke’s slacks and pulled them to his knees. His underwear swiftly followed. Then, Luke was face down over the neighbour’s knees, while Mr. Andrews warmed up his naked buttocks with the palm of his hand. Nope, Luke couldn’t figure out grown-ups.
The shop was closed now. Mrs. Kennedy had gone to their home to make a start on supper. Kennedy would not be disturbed. His hardware shop sold many items, but among the biggest sellers were the wooden punishment paddles he displayed on the far wall. “Boards of Education” or “Attitude Adjusters”, came in various sizes. The smallest had blades no bigger than a paperback book. The largest was a monster, a feller would need both hands to swing it.
The back room was small and airless. It was used to store goods before they went in the shop, but it was empty now, except for a couple of wooden crates waiting to be sent back to a supplier. Kennedy had thought about it. One of them would be high enough for the teenager to bend across.
“Come along Luke,” he gripped a paddle in his fist. “Let’s have those pants down,” he motioned the blade up and down as if guiding the boy. The tan slacks fitted Luke well and he had no need for a belt. Calmly, for this was how his own father did the business, he unbuttoned the waistband and the fly. A wriggle of his snake hips sent the pants slithering down his thighs.
Luke hitched his thumbs under the elastic waist of his underwear and sent it south. His father always paddled him on the bare; he supposed it would be the same with Mr. Kennedy. He stood and waited. He couldn’t figure why Mr. Kennedy was sweating so much, while Luke himself was shivering.
Kennedy wiped the back of his hand across his face and ran his fingers through his hair, then wiped them on the leg of his pants. “Bend over the chest,” he croaked. Luke’s dick flopped up and down as he took three steps towards the crate. He paused as if sizing up how best to do this. Then, he leaned forward, resting the palms of his hand on the stone floor. His toes rested on the ground behind him. He had snagged the end of his necktie under his body and it choked him, so he lifted himself up an inch and pulled it clear.
All the while Kennedy stood gripping his paddle, watching. The skin on Luke’s buttocks and legs was as smooth as the teenager’s face. The blondness of his hair made him seem hairless. Only when Kennedy stood right up to the prone body could he see tiny hairs, standing erect.
Luke rested patiently. He had been in similar situations before. The wood would sting. Horribly, possibly. He could not be sure. He had the measure of his father’s spankings, but this was to be his first from Mr. Kennedy. He was entering unknown territory.
It served no practical purpose, but Mr. Kennedy took hold of the tail of Luke’s gleaming white shirt and folded it once and then twice until it rested against the eighteen-year-old’s shoulders. The teenager was now naked from there to his ankles.
Mr. Kennedy steadied his shaking hand and rested the foot-long blade across the centre of Luke’s buttocks, noticing for the first time a wisp of hair in the boy’s crack. Mr. Kennedy breathed deeply, raised the paddle and brought it down with an almighty Crack!. He was rewarded with a dark pink rectangle. Luke sucked on his bottom lip and shut his eyes tightly. That one wasn’t so bad.
Mr. Kennedy smelt the sweat under his own armpit when he raised the paddle a second time before whacking it just under the rectangle. Now, most of Luke’s rear end glowed. The boy screwed his face like a gargoyle. His heart raced so fast it made him cough.
Luke’s buttocks were solid. The room echoed with a “thuncking” sound as the paddle connected again and again with naked meat. Luke’s tight bottom turned from hot pulsating pink to a brilliant shade of scarlet that excited and terrified Mr. Kennedy in equal measure.
Luke’s legs shuddered and kicked. It was a reflex action; his body’s way of coping with the terrific attack being made on it. The buttocks throbbed and even though he was face-down with his eyes inches from the grey stone, Luke knew his raw bottom was covered in welts where the edge of the paddle connected again and again with his naked vulnerable flesh.
He had not been counting, but he knew Mr. Kennedy had far exceeded the dozen licks his father usually delivered. On and on the paddle smacked into Luke’s upturned rear, punishing the smooth flesh until it gleamed like a red-hot ember in a dying fire.
Mr. Kennedy’s gasps far exceeded anything that escaped the teenager’s lips. His heart pounded and his temples pulsated, possibly more than Luke’s backside throbbed. Suddenly, almost absurdly, Mr. Kennedy remembered the instructions of his doctor. “Take it easy. Don’t strain your heart.”
It was over. Mr. Kennedy bent double resting his hands on his knees, the paddle at his feet. He wheezed like a steam engine settling down. At last, he was able to speak. “Get up Luke. Get dressed.”
The teenager pulled himself off the chest. Instinctively, his hands shot to his buttocks. He twisted his body and saw his round cheeks were deep crimson, with the plumpest, lower part of each globe a dark purplish-red. The skin had grown hard and crusty; places were cracked and blistering.
He tugged up his underwear, wincing as the smooth cotton nuzzled against raw flesh. Soon, his slacks were in place. He tucked the tail of his shirt in. The agony in his rear end was easing into a hard throbbing. He knew, that soon it would be a warm glow. It would hurt to sit down. He hoped his father didn’t notice. If he heard Mr. Kennedy had had to spank him, he would get it again at home.
“You should go now,” Mr. Kennedy nodded at the door and watched intently as Luke’s buttocks sashayed out the room.
Slowly, Mr. Kennedy returned to the store and replaced the paddle on its hook with the others. Absent-mindedly, he picked up a larger, heavier “Attitude Adjuster” and tested it against the palm of his hand. This would do perfectly for next time, he told himself, before locking the store for the night.
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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website
Charles Hamilton the Second