Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood sat slumped in the comfortable leather armchair in his study, trying to read the evening newspaper. It was deuced hard work. The noise coming from the senior boys’ dormitory on the landing above was disturbing his concentration.
Typical first night of term, the doctor mused. Let them get on with it. It was still early, they would eventually run out of steam and settle down to sleep.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood turned the pages of his newspaper. The American election was in full swing. Who really cared? he sighed.
Judging by the way the floorboards were shaking some kind of fight was in progress. With pillows, no doubt, the housemaster smiled. Boys will be boys. What tales they would have to tell, when they left the school. Thump! Something heavy crashing to the floor made the ceiling shake. Oh dear, Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood groaned. If it went on like this much longer, he would be forced to investigate.
A piercing screech rent the air. It sounded like a boy was being murdered. The housemaster folded his newspaper carefully and placed it on a nearby table. He listened intently. Silence. Whatever had happened, it seemed to be over.
Alas, no. Another equally spine-chilling shriek echoed across his study, followed by wild cheering. What on earth were they up to? Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood was very used to having boisterous schoolboys in the house, but this was too much.
Another scream. Foot stomping. The light fitting on the ceiling swayed. “Oh, this is really the limit,” Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood groaned inwardly. “If they persisted in behaving like junior boys, they should not be surprised to be treated that way.”
He hauled himself from his chair and stretched. His academic gown hung from a nearby umbrella stand. Wearily, he climbed into it. He placed his mortar-board cap on his head, fixing it so the tassel fell in just the right place. He glanced in the mirror; he rather liked his look.
Then, he took four steps across the study and stopped in front of a tall, thin cupboard. The door was closed but not locked. It opened with a flick of the wrist. Inside were several whippy rattan canes, of varying lengths and thicknesses. Any one of them could in the right hands deliver a stinging beating, he thought, but these were senior boys, they deserved something special.
He reached in and took hold of a dark-yellow curved-handled cane. It was a little over three feet in length and as thick as a pencil. Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood flexed it between his hands. He had used this particular rod many times in the past. He could attest to its effectiveness, as could the dozens of boys he had thrashed in the past three months alone. The housemaster was well-known, and justifiably proud, of his reputation among the fellows for his expertise.
He swished the cane a few times, delighting in the swooshing sound it made as it travelled through the air. Satisfied with the rod’s competence to deliver, he tucked it under his arm and exited his study.
There was no great distance between the study and the senior boys’ dormitory. Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood walked maybe ten yards down the passageway before ascending one flight of stairs to the landing above. The dormitory was almost exactly above the study. The housemaster made stately progress. He knew he should not be in a great hurry. There was a certain understanding in such matters. Boys who were ragging would have one of their own on sentry duty to call “cave” on the approach of a master. That would give the chaps a chance to affect an air of total innocence when the beak arrived.
But, there was no lookout and no abatement in the noise. Well, Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood concluded, fingering the end of his cane, they only had themselves to blame. He waited outside the dormitory door, listening to the mayhem from within. He counted to ten in his head, gripped the handle and dramatically flew open the door.
There was chaos. A dozen senior boys, all dressed in identical red-and-white-striped pyjamas, attacked one another with pillows. There appeared to be no sides. It was a free-for-all. Everyone was fair game.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood made an imposing figure, framed in the doorway. He was about six-feet-four-inches tall and built like a rugby prop forward, although he had never played the game. He wrapped his gown around his body and glared into the room. He looked like a hawk about to take flight. Impressive indeed. But, not one boy present took notice of him, too intent were they on their own private battles.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood sucked in a lung-full of air. “Boys!” he boomed. “Desist this instance.” A few paused their combat; many did not.
“I said, desist!” he roared.
Sheepishly, all in the room turned to face their housemaster. One or two hurriedly dropped pillows, staring at them as if they had never seen the things before, as they fell on beds.
“Such disgraceful behaviour,” Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood spoke in a natural voice. He had the complete attention of every boy in the room. “What were you thinking?” He turned to the boy nearest to him, “Carruthers?” and when he received no reply, he tried another senior, “Carstairs?”
The silence of the replies irritated him. “Carruthers, you are the dormitory monitor, explain to me what is going on.”
Carruthers blushed. Suddenly, he had an intense interest in the bare floorboards beneath his feet, but he did not reply. Carstairs could not stop looking at the fierce-looking cane tucked under the housemaster’s arm.
“Would some boy explain what is going on,” Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood’s beaky stare intimidated one boy after the other. “Dunno, Sir,” said one. “Sorry, Sir,”” another ventured.
“Sorry, yes you will be sorry,” the housemaster barked, “All of you.”
A dozen pairs of eyes burned into him as slowly and deliberately Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood slipped the cane from under his arm into his hand. He paused for dramatic effect, then flexed it between his hands until it made a perfect arc. Then, he swished it in the direction of the far wall. “Line up there all of you. Face me. Hands on head.”
Sorrowfully, the seniors shuffled across the dormitory. Not a sound could be heard, not even the thumping of the boys’ hearts. Corporal punishment was imminent. Soon, each stood as instructed, hands on head. Some tried to stand to attention as if on a military parade ground; most slouched, their backs arched and knees bent.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood glared at each boy in turn. He said nothing, his face said it all. He had practiced his intimating stare over many years. No boy dared meet his gaze. Some looked blankly into the distance, others at their bare feet. The housemaster swished his cane. All the boys would be beaten. Hard. They would expect, no demand, nothing less. Rules had been clearly expressed. Lights out and silence at nine-thirty. Just as clearly, rules had been disobeyed. There was a certain etiquette in such things. Matters had to take their course.
“I shall not tolerate such behaviour, and from senior men too,” he intoned. “You will each be beaten on the bared buttocks.” The housemaster delighted at his reception. Faces flushed as red as buttocks soon would be. He tapped the tip of his cane against a wrought-iron bedstead and pressed against it so his thick, dense cane curved.
“Step forward Carruthers. You are dormitory captain, it is your duty to maintain order,” he growled. “And discipline.” He rolled the word “discipline” around his mouth. The wretched senior before him would not – could not – look his master in the eye. “Sorry, Sir,” he mumbled.
“Carruthers, you will take Six; you other boys will get three,” Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood flexed the cane once more. “Lower your pyjama bottoms and bend over the bed.” It was a clear command, softly spoken. It was an instruction from a housemaster, no boy at the school would dare disobey.
Carruthers stepped forward; his fingers fumbled at the drawstring of his pyjamas, but soon the red-and-white-striped bottoms slithered down his thighs before snagging at the knees. He parted them slightly and they continued the journey to his feet. The senior hesitated, unsure if he should step out of the trousers bunched at his feet and present himself totally naked from the waist down. When no further instruction was forthcoming from the housemaster, he elected to leave them in place and bend forward.
The bedstead was cold and hard. It stuck into his stomach and hurt. He would have much preferred if the housemaster had placed a pillow for him, but, he knew, the good doctor had no concern that the boys he was about to punish should be comfortable. That was hardly the point of the exercise.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood stretched forward and took the tail of the pyjama jacket and with some ceremony folded it once, and then twice, up Carruthers’ back, exposing several inches of flesh covered in dark brown hair. He stood back to take his aim. He pressed the cane into Carruthers’ naked buttocks. There was a lot of “give”. The housemaster beat many boys and most had well upholstered bottoms. He could not recall the last time he had been presented with a pair of taut, pert buttocks.
He “sawed” the cane across the centre of the senior’s backside, enjoying how it twitched with anticipation. The housemaster made two practice swipes, raised the cane high and swiped it with terrific force into the naked flesh. The buttocks wobbled with the impact, a dark pink line appeared, and Carruthers threw back his head and silently gulped in draughts of air.
Unseen by the housemaster other boys craned their necks forward, lest they should miss any of the excitement. One boy, who had never been beaten, nor witnessed such a thing, felt his cock stiffen. He wondered if he dared remove his hands from his head to cover the obvious erection that was growing.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood took his aim once more. Carruthers’ body stiffened. The stroke made him tingle with agony from head to foot. His eyes shone, and his face went white, but he uttered no cry. He had been thrashed before, often. He knew the form; no matter how much a master hurt you, you must never show it. Four more cuts hammered into his naked haunches, each as hard and stinging as the first, but not a sound escaped his lips. But for the drawn, strained look about his lips, and the blaze in his eyes, he might have been a statuesque bust when he rose and joined his fellows, hands on head.
“Carstairs, you’re next. Step forward boy.” Carstairs was a little taller than Carruthers, but no less padded. Nonchalantly, he let his pyjama bottoms fall. He stood facing his tormentor affording the housemaster a perfect view of his flaccid cock and ball sack. It was, Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood observed silently, quiet the longest member he had seen in a considerable time.
Without fuss, Carstairs lifted his jacket to his chest exposing an almost hairless stomach. He paused to a silent count of three and satisfied that his fellow miscreants had admired his manhood, he dived across the bedstead. He spread his arms wide and opened his legs. His cock and balls dangled provocatively. But, the housemaster would not be distracted.
Swipe! Swipe! Swipe!
Three deep welts were already forming as Carstairs hobbled back in line. The pain was intense. It had only been three cuts, but the housemaster was a recognised expert with the cane. It had been “three” like the senior had seldom received before.
“Next boy,” Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood slashed his cane through the air. He was in his stride now.
So, it was that twelve boys settled down to sleep, each nursing deep cuts on their backsides. No words were exchanged until First Bell next morning. Then, each would display his trophy stripes. By then, deep pink would be turning to mauve. They would change to many colours of the rainbow before finally disappearing several days later.
Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood returned to his study. He replaced the cane in the tall, thin cupboard and opened his cocktail cabinet and poured two glasses of gin. Soon, the study door burst open. His visitor owned the establishment; he was not one to knock on doors.
“How did it go?” he inquired eagerly before gulping his drink.
“Very well. Very well indeed. I think they all thoroughly enjoyed themselves,” Dr. Thrumpington-Redwood nodded approvingly. “It should be one of our best weekends ever.”
Picture credit: The Magnet
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