“Trousers down. Bend over my knee.” The command from his Father was crystal clear. And totally expected. John shivered with cold. The short grey school trousers and knee socks he wore were totally inappropriate for the middle of winter. But that was Father for you. “You are still a child and you will be treated like a child,” was almost a holy mantra with Father.
So, it was that at eighteen years old, John was still dressing in grey school short trousers, and as often as not a white shirt and striped tie. If Father could have his way his son would wear the short trousers to school as well, but he was worldly-wise enough to know that would bring a gang of do-gooding teachers down on his head.
They were a good God-fearing family. John knew the meaning of obedience. Obedience to God, to his Father, to adults, to schoolteachers. To just about anyone really. It was all in the Bible; so was that bit about “Spare the rod and spoil the child.”
Father had all kinds of rules that must be obeyed. When to get up in the morning, a curfew at night. Bible studies, school work, chores about the house. No alcohol, no drugs (without question). No girls. Boundaries were set.
The lounge was cold and gloomy, a small table lamp failed to illuminate much of the room. Father sat with his back rigid in a wooden chair, his feet planted firmly on the carpet about eighteen inches apart. This was part of the ritual. In his hand he gripped a small wooden paddle. It had been especially made thirty years previously. It was a kind of family heirloom. It had been made with one purpose only one purpose: to inflict a terrific sting across a boy’s buttocks. The paddle’s blade was about the size of a DVD cover and a little thicker. Holes had been drilled in it; that made it speed faster through the air as it went on its mission.
Father held the paddle in his right hand and tapped it gently into the palm of his left. He watched his son make his preparations. This ritual had been played out countless times in the past. There would undoubtedly be many more reruns in the future. John would not legally be an adult until he reached the age of twenty-one. Even then if he stayed under Father’s roof, he would continue to be subjected to Father’s rules.
John knew what was expected. Father had made clear his displeasure and now John must pay the price. There was no argument. Pleas for clemency were out of the question. Actions had consequences. He looked at his Father impassively; the old man never changed. He was in his early fifties with grey, thinning hair. He was still remarkably thin, a lifetime’s abstinence from alcohol probably contributed to this. He wore dark grey trousers, a white shirt and tie. He was always dressed as if for the office, even though he actually worked on the bins at the local council.
John’s grey short trousers had an elasticated waist and needed no belt. He undid the metal clasp and pushed them to his knees. Gravity did the rest. His Father ceased tapping the paddle in his hand and spread his arms wide creating space for his son. The end of John’s shirt covered his crotch and buttocks, so he took a hold and lifted it to expose his flat, hairless stomach. Then, he leaned forward stretching out his arms before him to break his fall. He put his hands palm down and pressed them into the worn wooden floor. Behind him his toes hardly touched the ground. His stomach rested at an angle against his Father’s thigh so that his bottom was presented at a perfect angle for the paddle.
John stared down at the floor. Although worn by age it was spotlessly clean. It always was. That was his Mother’s doing. John waited patiently. There was more ritual to perform. Slowly, Father grasped the waist of John’s white cotton underpants and pulled them gently over the curves of his buttocks. John raised his body slightly above his Father’s lap to allow him the drag the pants down his thighs, past his shins before depositing them above his short trousers at his feet.
“There,” his Father sighed, “I hope you feel ashamed.” He never pulled down John’s pants in silence. He always had something to say. Oftentimes he would make his little joke, “These serve very little purpose at a time like this,” he would say as he bared John’s bottom.
A cold draught brushed against John’s naked flesh. His cheeks clenched. They always did. He had no control over this, it was just a natural reaction. He didn’t feel ashamed, his Father had seen John’s bare bottom (and much more besides) many times. His Father gripped the paddle tightly; he was ready to go. Father did not believe himself to be a cruel man. He was doing his duty: to God and to his son. The boy had to learn obedience. He must obey without question. How else would he get into the Kingdom of Heaven?
Father knew it was his responsibility to spank John’s bottom. Good and hard. It must hurt a lot, otherwise what was the point of it all? He rubbed the paddle across John’s left buttock, pressing it into the flesh as it went. John was a lean teenager with hardly enough fat on his body to sizzle a sausage; unlike so many of the obese teenagers Father saw hanging around the shopping centre. Father raised the paddle high and with a sharp downwards swipe sent it crashing down across John’s bare bum. The imprint of the paddle blade burned into the naked flesh. John’s legged bucked (another reflex action) and silently he expelled air through pursed lips.
Father made a second imprint on his son’s bottom. The paddle was so large and John’s bum so small that by now most of the cheeks were glowing bright pink. Already it looked like John’s buttocks were severely sun-burned. Six slaps hit John squarely across his bum, hitting both cheeks equally. He let out a quiet groan as each whack! struck the target. He wanted to take his punishment without fuss; that was what Father expected. Even so with each blow he wriggled his hips and his bum writhed. Father gripped him around the waist, steadying him.
Father carried on whacking the eighteen-year-old with a steady rhythm with the strikes.. Whack! Whack! One every three seconds or so. Whack! Whack! Whack!
John wasn’t in tears (it had been years since he blubbed during a spanking) but the pain was getting to him. He kept his palms flat on the floor, but my shoulders and back continued to writhe with the blows.
“Keep still.” Whack! Whack! Whack!
“You’re getting what you deserve.”
Father was right, John knew this. He deserved his spanking. Father did not enjoy beating him. He did it because he loved him.
Whack! Whack! Whack!
“I’m sorry,” John said. Another part of the ritual was being played out: repentance.
Father was impressed but carried on with the pulsating blows. John was breathless, losing more wind as each successive wallop bounced off his taut bottom.
The next dozen or so whacks were a little harder. The pain was growing, travelling down John’s legs. Whack! Whack!
No square inch of John’s buttocks or the back of his thighs was left untouched. Red blotches were already turning purple. His undercurves were tender and blood was rising under the skin, it looked a little like raw hamburger meat. Sweat soaked John’s back, despite the chill air in the room. The back of the teenager’s neck was almost as scarlet as his beaten bottom. Father was not an ogre, he was not a cruel man, it was time to stop.
John lay face down gulping in breath. Father continued to hold him tightly at the waist. He examined his handiwork. John’s bottom was swelling and would be tender for some considerable time to come. He would be reminded of the need to show obedience every time he sat on a hard surface for the rest of the day. The bruises might take a week or more to clear. Father congratulated himself on a job well done.
He let his son stand and watched impassively as John retrieved his grey short trousers from the middle of the room where he had kicked them during the worst of the spanking. Within seconds they were securely buckled at their rightful place.
John had regained his composure. “Sorry Father,” he said quietly and he meant it. He did so want to please God and his Father.
“Go to your room. Once you are settled I’ll come up and we shall read the Bible together.”
John flashed a smile of gratitude and gently rubbing the seat of his short trousers he left the room. His Father sat in the gloom lightly polishing his paddle.
Picture credit: Unknown
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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website
Charles Hamilton the Second