Drama in the Housemaster’s study

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z used study (48)A theatre play

The scene is set in the housemaster’s study at an elite public boarding school. It can be set anytime between the 1930s and the early 1960s but it has to be ‘old fashioned.’ If theatre resources allow the room should have wooden panels. At the very least it must have an old wooden desk with a chair for the housemaster. In one corner there is a hat / coat / umbrella stand. Hanging from it are at least three traditional whippy punishment canes. There can be more but however many are available, the canes must be of different lengths and thicknesses.

There are two characters the HOUSEMASTER who is aged fifty-plus. Ideally, he will be dressed in an academic gown. His mortar-board cap can hang alongside the canes. If the gown is not available, he should be dressed in a formal suit. He may leave the jacket hanging also.

The second character is REYNOLDS, a senior boy. He is eighteen years old and soon to be leaving the school. He is dressed in traditional school uniform of pale-grey trousers, grey socks and black shoes. He also wears a white shirt with a striped tie. He should also wear a school blazer with a crest. Since this is an elite school it is preferable that his blazer is not just a simple black one. Ideally it should have some colour (red, blue or green are typical) or it can be in different colour stripes. There is no need for him to be wearing a school cap.

Throughout the scene the HOUSEMASTER adopts a stern visage and tone of voice.

 

THE SCENE

HOUSEMASTER (H.M.) is seated behind his desk. There is a whisky bottle (almost empty) on the desk. He holds a glass in his hand and is staring blankly into the middle distance. There is a knock on the study door that wakes him from his apparent stupor. Suddenly realising that the bottle and glass are visible, he hurriedly opens a drawer to his desk and hides them there.

H.M. Come!

The door opens slowly and REYNOLDS stands half in and half out of the doorway.

H.M. Don’t dawdle boy. Come in.

REYNOLDS reluctantly enters the study. He stands uncertain what to do next.

H.M. Close the door boy.

REYNOLDS closes the door.

H.M. Stand and face the wall boy.

H.M. waves his arms about and vaguely indicates a spot against the wall. REYNOLDS shuffles into position. He slouches.

H.M. Stand up straight boy. Hands on head.

REYNOLDS does this. H.M. sits still at his desk. It is obvious that he has no pressing business to attend to. He merely wants to make Reynolds wait; to let him stew. After a few moments H.M. rises from his chair and slowly paces the study. REYNOLDS can hear his footsteps and turns his head slightly to see what is going on.

H.M. Face to the wall boy!

H.M. paces some more staring intently at REYNOLDS all the while. After about one minute of pacing H.M. returns to sit at his desk.

H.M. Turn around Reynolds. Stand there

H.M. indicates a spot in front of his desk. REYNOLDS tries to look unconcerned (although he is). He slouches.

H.M. Straighten yourself up boy. How dare you present yourself to your housemaster in such a fashion.

REYNOLDS straightens himself up with his hands by his side. Thinking this makes him look too much like a soldier, he clasps his hand behind his back. He looks directly at the H.M.

H.M. Well Reynolds you know why I have summoned you.

H.M. pauses expecting an answer and when none comes he continues.

H.M. I have it on good authority that you have been frequenting The Three Fishers public house.

H.M. pauses once more. REYNOLDS looks ahead blankly. He starts at a spot somewhere over the H.M.’s shoulder.

H.M. Well boy what have you got to say for yourself.

REYNOLDS shrugs his shoulder but does not answer.

H.M. Pah! Don’t add dumb insolence to your crime boy. Were you or were you not in The Three Fishers?

REYNOLDS. [Almost inaudibly] Yes sir.

H.M. Speak up boy. Were you in The Three Fishers?

REYNOLDS [Louder] Yes sir.

H.M. leans forward in his chair and steeples his fingers. He glares at REYNOLDS.

H.M. You are aware that The Three Fishers is out of bounds. To all boys. Seniors as well.

REYNOLDS. Yes, sir.

H.M. You are aware that earlier this term the headmaster himself announced that fact.

REYNOLDS. Yes, sir.

H.M. And yet Reynolds you took it upon yourself to ignore the headmaster’s instruction.

REYNOLDS stares down at the floor and wrings his hands behind his back.

H.M. Well Reynolds. Do you believe the headmaster’s instruction does not apply to you.

REYNOLDS continues to look at the floor.

H.M. Well boy! Answer me Reynolds!

REYNOLDS. No sir.

H.M. No sir. That is correct Reynolds. The rules apply to you and to the other boys equally. You have deliberately flouted the headmaster’s instruction and for that you must be punished.

H.M. hauls himself from the chair and paces the study once more. He stops at the hat stand. REYNOLDS follows his progress with his eyes. H.M. looks intently at the canes dangling. He chooses one and flexes it between his hand. He acts as if he had never seen the cane before. He puts it back and takes a second cane. He flexes this as before. He swishes it through the air. He puts that back and selects a third. He flexes and swishes it. Then he turns to face REYNOLDS.

H.M. I shall cane you Reynolds.

REYNOLDS looks alarmed. He waves his arms.

REYNOLDS. You can’t do that sir. Cane me. I’m in the Sixth. A senior. Seniors aren’t caned sir.

H.M. glowers at REYNOLDS. He flexes the cane menacingly.

H.M. How dare you Reynolds! Such impertinence. I shall cane whomsoever I wish.

REYNOLDS. But sir. I’m a senior. Eighteen. I’m too old to be caned.

H.M. leans into REYNOLDS. He is so close the boy can smell the whisky on the H.M.’s breath.

H.M. As long as you remain a pupil at this school REYNOLDS you are never too old to be caned.

REYNOLDS. But sir. It’s not done sir.

H.M. Not done! Not done. It might not have been done before in recent history but never have I been faced with a wretch such as you Reynolds.

H.M. wobbles the cane and points to his desk.

H.M. Take off your blazer. Leave it on my desk.

REYNOLDS rubs sweat from his face.

REYNOLDS. Sir you can’t cane me. Really you can’t.

H.M. Outrageous! Truly outrageous. If you do not comply with my instruction immediately, I shall take you to your headmaster. Rest assured he will flog you before putting you on the next train away from here. Expelled Reynolds. Never to return.

REYNOLDS is sweating. He stares anxiously at the cane in the H.M.’s hand. He looks across at the desk. Slowly, he unbuttons his blazer, slips it from his shoulders and carefully places it on the desk.

H.M. wobbles the cane and points to a spot in the centre of the study.

H.M. Stand there boy.

Reluctantly, REYNOLDS shuffles to the spot. H.M. swishes the cane through the air.

H.M. As you were quick to remind me Reynolds you are a senior boy, I shall deliver a senior boy’s beating. [He pauses for dramatic effect] Take down your trousers.

REYNOLDS looks shocked. His mouth gapes. He thinks about making a further protest. The words “But sir” form on his lips, but he says nothing. There is a long pause before, his hands shake as he struggles to get his belt undone and the fly buttons of his trousers open. The trousers are open but he holds on to them so they don’t fall.

H.M. Drop the trousers Reynolds.

REYNOLDS lets go and the trousers fall to his feet. He is wearing traditional white cotton Y-front underpants.

H.M. Bend over boy.

REYNOLDS glares at the H.M. before he bends down and places his hands on his knees.

H.M. All the way REYNOLDS.

REYNOLDS grabs his shins.

H.M. Pah! Right down boy. Touch those toes. Knees straight.

REYNOLDS struggles to get into the right position.  H.M. watches him thoughtfully flexing the cane in his hands. At this point the theatre group must decide how to proceed with the caning. It might be possible if REYNOLDS keeps his back to the audience for some protective padding to be hidden inside his pants. Or he may be required to bend at such an angle that it looks like he is being caned, but the cane actually misses – it would prove difficult to do this in such a way that all members of the audience wherever they are seated are deceived. It is also possible that the young actor playing REYNOLDS is sufficiently dedicated to his craft that he is prepared to take an authentic caning. This would be the author’s preferred course of action but it is recognised that if the play has a long run at a theatre the actor will have to endure a corrugated bum for the entire duration.

H.M. tucks the cane under his arm and then takes hold of the elasticated waistband of the underpants and pulls so that they hug the contours of the buttocks. There should be no creases in the cotton. He then gently rubs the palm of his hand across first the left buttock and then the right. He gives one cheek a playful slap. Then he slips the cane from his arm into his hand. He steps back and stands to the boy’s side and gently taps the point of the cane across the very centre of the buttocks. REYNOLDS visibly flinches. H.M. “saws” the cane from side to side across the tensed buttocks. He raises the cane and swipes it across the buttocks with tremendous strength.

REYNOLDS. Ouch! Oww!

REYNOLDS shakes his hips. Almost raises from the touch-toes position. Steadies himself.

H.M. Tucks the cane behind his back and slowly paces the study. He reaches the far end and from a distance he admires the figure of the submissive boy. He does this pacing after delivering each stroke. H.M. knows that the boy’s buttocks are blazing and it will take a few seconds for the intense agony to ease before he can lay on the next stroke. He paces back to the boy and takes aim again. A little lower this time. REYNOLDS visibly tenses. H.M. swipes the second. H.M. tucks the cane behind his back and paces again. Then he repeats the tapping and sawing and delivers the third stroke.

H.M. I trust I am getting through to you Reynolds.

REYNOLDS [Gulps and gasps] Yes sir.

H.M. Will you be visiting The Three Fishers again?

REYNOLDS. No sir.

H.M. I’m very glad to hear it.

H.M. tucks the cane under his arm and with both hands he takes hold of and pulls at the elasticated waistband of the underpants.

REYNOLDS. Oh no sir. Please no sir.

H.M. Snorts. He peers under the cotton at Reynold’s backside. He is only checking to see how accurately his cuts have landed. He lets go of the waistband, tugs again and with the palm of his hand he smooths creases from the cotton.

H.M. A fine set of marks so far Reynolds.

REYNOLDS shuffles his feet slightly. He is finding it hard to take this severe caning.

H.M. [Barks] Keep still boy. Steady. Let me get on with my job.

H.M. taps and saws and whacks down stroke number four into the underside of the cheeks. REYNOLDS yelps and starts to stand. He just about manages to steady himself and bends over again so that he brushes the toes of his shoes with his fingers.

H.M. Yes Reynolds. Stay in position. If you do that again I shall administer extra strokes. And we’ll see how you like it with your underpants at your ankles.

H.M. taps and saws and strikes across the centre of REYNOLDS’ bum. REYNOLDS’ body shakes. His head rises and shakes. It takes a monumental effort for him to stay bent over touching toes.

H.M. Nearly over Reynolds. Two more to go.

H.M. taps and saws and lands a terrific swipe. REYNOLDS goes through a litany of wriggles and shakes while yapping and yelping. H.M. presses his hand into Reynolds’ back to stop him jumping up. When he is satisfied the boy is steady H.M. paces the study. He returns, taps and saws.

H.M. Last one boy. Brace yourself.

H.M. swipes the hardest cut yet.

REYNOLDS yells. His knees buckle, he almost topples onto his face.

H.M. You may stand Reynolds. Get dressed.

REYNOLDS jumps to his feet and hops from foot to foot doing the spanking dance. Both hands grasp his buttocks and he rubs furiously. H.M. stares at him with undisguised contempt. After much jumping about REYNOLDS reaches for his trousers and pulls them up. He flinches as the trousers touch against his roasted bottom.

H.M. Take your blazer and leave.

REYNOLDS grabs the jacket from the desk and not waiting to put it on he rushes from the study. H.M. watches him go. Then, slowly H.M. walks across the study and returns the cane to the hat stand alongside the others hanging there. He is breathing heavily. Unsteadily he slumps in his chair at the desk and he tugs open the drawer. He grabs the whisky bottle and holds it up to the light. It is almost empty. A look of fear crosses his face. He doesn’t bother to pour it into the glass but raises the bottle to his lips and drains the last of the whisky.

Light fades to dark

 

Picture credit: The Magnet

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Also writing school stories as Scholastic here

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

A housemaster muses

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Without doubt the most annoying thing about being housemaster at a boarding school is I am never off duty. There is not a moment of the day I can truly call my own. By the nature of my work I have responsibility for a house full of schoolboys. During the day I am one of a number of masters who teach them; by evening and night we live under the same roof and I must account for their safety and general welfare.

It can be very wearisome. My wife would prefer it if I went to teach at an adult college or preferably a university where we could have a home we could call our own. I think she also finds the company of adults more agreeable.

This evening has been a case in point. We had settled down after supper to enjoy a glass of whisky (one each that is not one between two) and listen to a concert on the BBC Third Programme on the wireless when we were interrupted by Blair, the school porter. He had a message he felt he must convey to me with the utmost urgency.

I cursed under my breath when he arrived on my doorstep, but propriety requires that I treat such visits with the utmost seriousness. I allowed him to enter into the hallway, but, keen to get rid of him at the earliest opportunity, I did not invite him further into the house. I had no wish to antagonise my wife further.

Blair told me in the breathless way he has that he had intercepted Wilson, a senior pupil in my house, as he climbed over the exterior wall of the school. He had been out of school illicitly. Blair did not have the sense to ignore this and allow the boy a safe passage to his dormitory. The dunderhead decided he had to come to inform me.

There are many rules at boarding schools; too many some would say. Boys break them all the time, but logic suggests that a rule can only be noticed to have been broken if the boy is caught. Put another way, if I did not know that Wilson had been breaking bounds then I need not do anything about it. Now, that I did know, I was required to act, thereby disturbing my cosy night at home with my wife.

Blair was without doubt exceedingly pleased that he had intercepted Wilson. I knew he would not allow me to turn a blind eye and he would expect me to fulfil my duty as a housemaster. Of course, I had to act. Now, that Wilson had been caught he would expect nothing less of me. If I failed to do so word would soon spread among the boys and my credibility would be ruined. I would become a “soft touch” and they need never heed my word again. No, my hands were tied. I had no choice.

I might have left this problem until the morning but since my evening had already been disturbed I reasoned I might as well get it over with now. Blair was inordinately pleased when I asked him to seek Wilson out in the dormitory and instruct him to visit me in my study. “He’ll be in his pyjamas,” he said, his mouth widening into a cruel snarl. “It is a warm evening,” I responded evenly, “Tell him not to get dressed.” The snarl became a broad grin and Blair darted off enthusiastically.

I popped my head around the drawing room door to appraise my wife of developments. She did not speak but her icy stare said enough. I went across the passageway and awaited Wilson’s arrival. I know enough about the senior boys here to know he had probably been visiting The Three Fishers which is a run-down hostelry a short distance from the school. It is a disreputable establishment where they think nothing of serving pints of mild beer to our boys. I also knew without doubt that Wilson would not have been alone. Blair would be disappointed to know that although he had snared Wilson there were others who had evaded his capture. I also decided that I would not make it my business to try to get Blair to give me the names of his companions. The schoolboy code of honour runs deep and I did not want to spend more time on this than I absolutely had.

No more than two minutes later there was a knock on the study door. I called for Wilson to enter. He waited hesitantly in the doorway. “Come in. Stand there.” I pointed to a spot in the middle of the room and Wilson went there, his feet apart, his hands clasped behind his back and head bowed. He knew what to expect; he had been a pupil at the school for long enough.

Indeed, he was eighteen years old and in less than a month would be leaving us for good. I walked to the corner of the study where several whippy, rattan canes dangled from a rail by their crook handles. I took down the thickest cane from my collection. Wilson continued to stare at his bare feet. I flexed the cane between my hands; this serves no practical purpose and I suspect I do this by habit.

“Look at me Wilson,” I intoned and he did so. I continued bending the cane. It was less than three feet long and dark-brown in colour.  It was denser than the other canes and most suitable for a senior boy. It had notches every six inches or so along its length and I knew from experience it would deliver a satisfactorily sound beating.

Boarding schools are unusual places; they are their own little world. I wonder how many people realise just what goes on here. I was about to cane an eighteen-year-old pupil for staying out late. Is there a father in the entire land who would do the same to his son of similar age? Would such a boy submit himself to punishment if called upon? I don’t need to answer those questions.

But at boarding school we have our rituals and one was about to play itself out here. I read Wilson the charge sheet. Did he know being out after lights out was against the rules? (An unnecessarily question, but one needs the miscreant to acknowledge same.) Did he have anything to say in mitigation? (Of course not, what could he say?). So, the verdict was guilty as charged. Let punishment commence.

I swished the cane through the empty air and pointed it at a somewhat worn armchair that I had already strategically placed. “Stand behind the chair,” I instructed. In my years as a housemaster I have never had a boy refuse my instructions. One or two of the younger ones, and therefore with less experience of corporal punishment, might plead for clemency. I have known them shed tears before the first stroke has landed. But, none, ever, has refused to comply.

Wilson positioned himself to my satisfaction. He placed his steady hands on the back of the chair and waited further instruction. “Take down your pyjama bottoms. Bend over.” A flicker of his grey eyes and a slight colouring of his cheeks revealed to me that he had not expected that order. His hands were less steady when he took hold of the drawstring on his pyjamas and undid it. Once the front of his pyjamas were open all he had to do was to let go and the bottoms hurled to his ankles.

He turned his body slightly to conceal his privates from my view then after taking a deep breath he slumped across the chair.

z used cane pyjamas armchair london CPS

Wilson was the prefect height to fit across it. His stomach rested easily on the back’s apex. He reached his arms forward and gripped the seat cushion tightly. He kept his head low and stared down at the rather soiled material. Without my requesting, he spread his feet and raised his bottom high. He presented me with a perfect target.

All I had to do was take hold of the tail of his pyjama jacket and pull it away from the buttocks. I could hear he was breathing heavily and saw a trail of moisture forming down the centre of his back. As if to remind me that this was a senior boy submitting his backside for discipline, his bottom and legs were covered with fine hair and two testicles hung below his cheeks and between his legs.

There are some people who object to the corporal punishment of schoolboys. I can only say they have probably never taught; and certainly not in boarding school. A caning is an effective discipline and unlike a detention or the imposition of lines or an essay it is takes up no time. It is over in minutes. The boy has committed a misdemeanour, he has been found out, he admits his guilt and he submits to a beating. Then he and the schoolmaster get back to work. I have no doubt whatsoever that if the school decided to abolish the cane in favour of some other punishment the boys themselves would lead the complaints.

So it was that Wilson submitted himself to my cane. He tried to be stoic but his bottom quivered the moment I sawed my cane across the centre of his cheeks. I took my aim, raised the cane high and twisting my torso slightly (as a golfer does when taking a swing) I slashed the whippy rattan down. It hit him exactly where I intended and a glowing red line immediately appeared. A hissing noise like a steam engine setting down whistled through his clenched lips, but otherwise he made no sound. He gripped the seat cushion harder and pursed his lips.

I know (because I was beaten often enough myself as a boy) that the agony as the cane impacts is intense. Almost immediately that pain dissipates and becomes a throbbing ache. For maximum effect the master should wait a few seconds before delivering the next stoke. I have my own ritual whereby I hold the cane behind my back and gently stroll the length of the study. It is not a big room but by the time I have circumnavigated it and returned to stand behind the boy sufficient time has elapsed for me to continue.

I put the second swipe an inch below the first. Wilson’s knees wobbled but he showed great fortitude and otherwise remained motionless. I went for my walk and then laid the third cut high. Now, he had three parallel lines and a band of throbbing, red flesh three inches wide to contend with. My method of caning is quite typical. When presented with a boy’s bottom there isn’t much more one can do. I believe that a good master should put six strokes one beside the others across the posterior and that is a sound enough caning. Some of my colleagues try to get a stroke to land on top of one previously delivered, thereby re-opening the cut and intensifying the pain. I am sure the boys agree with me that that this is not cricket. Let punishment be appropriate to the misdeed committed; there is no need to resort to torture.

That can be left to our headmaster; his preferred method is to deliver four parallel strokes and then place two diagonals across them so the boy has a perfect “X” embossed across his bottom. Now, that really is not cricket; but I, a humble housemaster, will keep further comment on this to myself.

So, I put six parallel strokes across Wilson’s bare bottom. He took them well. They hurt and I could see his buttocks were glowing. I had roasted his posterior well. I toured the study for the last time giving my beating time to fully sink in. Wilson’s pyjama jacket was soaked with perspiration and the back of his neck was almost (but not quite) as scarlet as his bottom. In contrast, his face was a deathly white. I instructed him to stand and quickly he pulled up the pyjama bottoms and tied himself up. I could see he desperately wanted to rub away at his buttocks, but in the etiquette of these things, that is not allowed. A boy must never let his master know he is in pain.

I let him out of his misery and dismissed him. I am sure the moment the study door had closed behind him he massaged  his rump vigorously. He certainly would have dashed to the lavatories to inspect my handiwork in the mirrors there before belatedly going to bed.

I replaced the cane with the others and went to re-join my wife. She poured us both whiskies and we settled down to enjoy the final movement of the concert on the wireless.

 

Picture credit: CP Services, London

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Also writing school stories as Scholastic here

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

 

Tompkins in the housemaster’s study

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Tompkins stared down at the dirty grey carpet. From his position he had an excellent, close-up view. It wasn’t the first time he had been in this position with his knotted striped tie dangling in front of his face and his fingertips brushing the toes of his black, shiny shoes. It probably wouldn’t be the last time either, St. Tom’s was that kind of school.

He waited, stoically. He was in no hurry to have his backside blistered one more time by the housemaster. His heart raced as he felt the tail of his shirt being raised and folded up his back.

He tried to ignore the sight of his pale-grey trousers bunched at his ankles. His back was arched, it ached a little. Touching toes was more difficult than it looked.

He could feel his white Y-front underpants stretched across his firm bottom. They fitted a bit too snugly and rode up into his crack. Not that it made much different, this was to be a bared-bottom caning. Not that the thin cotton pants could offer any protection against the housemaster’s thick, but whippy rattan cane.

Tompkins felt the housemaster’s warm hands on his flesh as he took hold of the elasticated waist of his underpants. Then they were fluttering down his legs to land on top of his trousers. Now, he was ready for a stinging Six.

The housemaster wasn’t quite ready. He had a ritual and it included preparing a boy by uncovering his bottom and then going to fetch the crook-handled cane that dangled from the hat stand in the corner of the study. From the corner of his eye Tompkins watched the headmaster’s feet as he made his journey. A cool breeze from an open window tickled Tompkins’ naked legs.

z used cane pants down touch toes school London

He could hear, but not see, the cane being lifted from the stand. It made a slight rattle. There was a pause, followed by a tremendous whooshing noise as the headmaster swished the cane through the air. Tompkins’ heart skipped a beat. It usually did at this moment, even though he was eighteen years old and no stranger to the sting of the rattan across his stretched bottom.

The housemaster’s creaking footsteps announced he was nearly ready for action. He stood to Tompkins’ left and slightly behind him. Again, the boy could see him from the corner of his eye. The feet swayed slightly. Tompkins knew that the cane was high in the air. Any moment now!

Swipe! Crack!

Tompkins grunted as the cane landed in the centre of his naked cheeks. It was a real stinger. The housemaster put all his beef into it. He could lay it on when he wanted to. Tompkins knew he was really going to take his backside off. He expected nothing less. The housemaster was a renowned caner, one of the best (or the worst, depending on your point of view) in the entire school and he had many rivals for that honour.

The housemaster waited, counting slowly to twenty in his head; waiting for the pain in Tompkins’ bottom to ebb away. Then he lashed the second stroke, landing it an inch below the first. The pain rose sharply to a new peak. He was rewarded with a sharp exhalation of breath. Tompkins screwed his eyes tightly and shut his teeth. Before the housemaster was finished Tompkins’ rear end would be a raging fire.

The third cut made him yelp and he rocked on the balls of his feet. His fingers shot up off his toes but he quickly grabbed his ankles and this stopped him jumping to his feet. He must avoid that at all costs: he didn’t want extra strokes. His bottom roared like mad, he knew three deep welts were throbbing across the middle of his bum, expertly delivered in a strip no more than two inches wide and perfectly parallel. There was still plenty of space on Tompkins’ quivering bottom for more strokes.

Crack!

“Yarooh!”

It was a full-throated cry. Tompkins couldn’t help it. He shook his head from side to side as the excruciating agony coursed north-south; east-west throughout his body. His bottom wriggled.

“Steady, boy,” the housemaster intoned. Tompkins watched the housemaster’s feet, whenever he raised the cane, he dug his heels into the carpet.

Tompkins clenched his buttocks as he waited for the next stinger. It was a natural reaction. His bottom tried to compressed itself into something approaching a hard, rubber ball. It was supposed to be a protection from the stick. It didn’t work.

Slash! Slash!

Two in quick succession. Tompkins’ bottom felt like it had been cut open with a razor. His knees buckled and he let out a shrill scream. He was fighting back the tears. The housemaster’s shiny shoes disappeared. Tompkins knew then that he was returning the cane to its resting place.

Tompkins waited, head low, bottom high, fingers now back on toes. The punishment wasn’t yet over. The housemaster had one final ritual to perform. With the cane now safely stashed away until the next time, he sauntered over to Tompkins. The boy held his breath. This was the worst part. The housemaster patted Tompkins naked rear and gently caressed the corrugated flesh. Then, the hand rose and slapped down hard first on the left buttock and then the right. They were painful blows, reigniting the cuts on Tompkins’ roasted rear. He wriggled from side to side.

“Up you get!” the housemaster ordered brightly.

Tompkins sucked down a lung-full of air and slowly straightened up. The housemaster stood directly in front of him, gazing at Tompkins’ cock as it bounced up and down while the boy struggled into his Y-fronts. Soon, his trousers were back in their rightful position
Now, fully dressed again, Tompkins gingerly rubbed the seat of his trousers. “Thank you, sir,” he croaked and he hobbled towards the study door.

“My pleasure, Tompkins,” the headmaster replied graciously.

Picture credit: CP Services, London

 

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Also writing school stories as Scholastic here

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

All is well in the world

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Harry Clifton was in no hurry. He ambled across the quadrangle. It was a fine day in early summer. The sun shone. The sky was blue. It was all in all a beautiful day. Except is wasn’t a fine day. Not for Harry Clifton, the sixth-form pupil at St. Francis Independent Grammar School; the soon-to-be former pupil of said school. The final exams were only weeks away. Then freedom. The end of school. Whoever it was who said schooldays were the happiest days of your life was an ass. Surely, Harry Clifton supposed, things could only get better after St FIGS.

Harry Clifton was on to something there. He knew as sure as eggs was eggs that this present day could never count as one of the best of his life. Ha! He almost smiled the best. Not so much the best, but six-of-the-best. It was a weak joke, but it was the best that Harry Clifton could come up with. He passed through the entrance of Founder’s Building and into a short, dark passageway. He was answering the summons of his headmaster. Chaps were only called to the Beak for one reason and one reason alone. There could be no doubt about it. Harry Clifton was in for a bowing. A swishing. A caning. Six-of-the-best.

Harry Clifton knew this for certain because St FIGS was a traditional school: traditional curriculum, traditional uniform, traditional sports and, of course, traditional discipline. No matter how slowly he walked Harry Clifton would eventually reach the heavy oak door of the headmaster’s study. He might delay his ordeal by a few seconds, but he could not put it off forever. He paused outside the door and ran his hand through his unruly hair. He rubbed each shoe against the back of his trouser leg. They were far from shining, but they would have to do. He made sure all three buttons on his green-and-gold woollen blazer were correctly fastened. All was ship shape and Bristol fashion. He was under starter’s orders. Ready for the off. About to go over the top. He drew down a deep draught of air, formed a fist with his right hand, raised it, and with more confidence than he truly felt, he rapped on the door.

Silence. Nothing. He craned his neck and placed his ear closer to the door. Was the headmaster not at home? Had he been called away on an urgent mission? Did this spell a reprieve for Harry Clifton? No, the senior sixth-former considered. The Beak had probably not heard. He bunched his fist again and was about to have another go at the door when a clear, sonorous voice rang out from the other side, “Come!” The headmaster had heard all right, he was only playing his silly games.

Harry Clifton sucked in air once more, gripped the handle and pushed the heavy door open. He hesitated on the threshold of the study. “Come in boy, don’t dawdle,” the headmaster rasped. Harry Clifton jolted forward and landed in front of the headmaster’s vast walnut desk. “Pah! Close the door Clifton! Close the door,” the Beak thundered.

With that task completed Harry Clifton once more stood before the headmaster. The Beak presented an imposing character, drenched in ugliness. Standing, he made a tall, lank, almost skeletal figure. His gaunt face, was heavily lined. His aquiline nose and thin pointed chin made the appearance of a caricatured witch. He wheezed through his nose. His dark piercing eyes transfixed on the boy before him.

For his part Harry Clifton resolved not to meet that alarming gaze. He focused on a spot over the headmaster’s shoulder, at a hat stand in the corner of the room. It was an ancient beat-about piece of furniture, old enough to be steeped in the tradition of the school. It had served many headmasters at St FIGS over countless generations. The number of hats it had supported over the years was a matter lost to history. The present headmaster had an additional requirement for the furniture. Harry Clifton’s gaze transfixed on the three long, thin whippy rattan canes that dangled by their curved handles. Small and relatively unobtrusive though they were, to the boy standing awaiting punishment they dominated the study.

Harry Clifton swallowed hard. The canes were of differing thicknesses, densities and lengths but he knew with absolute certainty that in the hands of the headmaster any one of these rods would “take his backside off” as the schoolboy slang then circulating had it. Alongside the canes hung the headmaster’s black academic gown and the flat mortar-board cap, the official uniform of schoolmasters across the land. The badge of office. The seal of power.

Harry Clifton did not concentrate on his droning headmaster. The room was hot and airless and the monotonous voice was sleep-inducing. Suddenly there was silence. A long, pregnant pause. “Well boy!” the headmaster barked. Harry Clifton shook awake, the headmaster leaned from his chair forward over the large desk, his black piggy eyes blazed, “What have you to say for yourself?”

At a loss to the question he had been asked, Harry Clifton mumbled an all-purpose reply. Schoolboys up and down the land and throughout history when carpeted in the headmaster’s study were required to utter these words at some point in the proceedings, most often immediately before the real action began. “Sorry, Sir,” he coughed, his throat irritatingly dry.

“Bah!” the headmaster ejaculated and leaned back in his chair, his nose and chin quivering so that the points of each almost touched. “Not good enough, Clifton; not good enough.” Harry Clifton had never supposed it would be. He expected Six and he wished the headmaster would just get on with it. The school day was at an end and he was anxious to be away home. He had a date to meet the boys at The Three Fishers that evening and there was every chance to meet girls of a certain character.

The headmaster jawed on and on. Smoking. Smoking cigarettes, surely the biggest crime imaginable at a school. Why, the headmaster had only last week delivered another of his edicts. He cared little about the harmful effects of tobacco to one’s health. It is unlikely that he had ever read about the causes of cancer. Cigarettes were banned because he said so. It was an order. Orders were given by those on high and obeyed (unquestioned) by those below. The hierarchy of a school was beyond question. The headmaster’s word was law and if that law was broken there could be only one outcome. The punishment must fit the crime. If orders were not obeyed society would crumble; the country would go to the dogs. Anarchy would reign!

Harry Clifton had been smoking on and off since the age of eleven and by the age of eighteen had developed a ten cigarettes a day habit. No headmaster’s proclamation was going to alter that. The craving for nicotine far outweighed any danger of capture. It was just bad luck that Mr Hopkinson, the junior sports master, had carelessly left a gym sock behind after lessons that morning. Harry Clifton was caught cigarette in hand. Mr Hopkinson, whose contract of employment at the school had yet to be confirmed, was delighted at the opportunity to demonstrate his loyalty to the tradition of St FIGS.

The headmaster had finished his jawing. “Take off your blazer Clifton. Hang it there,” he curled his lips and cricked his neck in the general direction of the hat stand. Harry Clifton had not expected the palms of his hands to be sweating. He wiped them on his blazer and tackled the three buttons. As he lifted it onto the hat stand he observed the three whippy canes in close up. They really didn’t look so awesome. None was thicker than a pencil. Their dark yellow colouring made them look old and worn; they were warped through excessive use.

As he was doing this he was aware of noises behind him. Floorboards creaked; the headmaster was on the move. By the time Harry Clifton turned back to face into the study the Beak had moved an ancient, armless, straight-backed chair into the middle of the room. He sat down and wriggled his bony buttocks in an attempt to achieve comfort. He snapped his fingers and pointed to a spot on the worn rug close by himself. “Stand there boy,” he rasped. Harry Clifton stood for a moment enveloped in confusion. He had half-expected a chair to be placed in position, but then if the usual script was being played out he, Harry Clifton, would be bent across the thing; head low, bottom high, offering up his posterior to his tormentor’s cane.

But what was this? The headmaster glowered across the room. “Now!” he roared, since he was unable to ever speak with a natural voice. A bemused Harry Clifton shuffled forward until he stood a foot or two to the right of the headmaster. At this point, the Beak spread his legs offering the wretched sixth-former a bird’s-eye view of the Beak’s bony thighs and knees. Harry Clifton’s head swam with confusion, but things were about to get much worse.

The headmaster’s ugly, lined face looked up at the boy, his mouth cracked into a sneer, “Lower your trousers and bend over my knee,” he cackled. The sneer widened into a full-on smile, revealing a set of nicotine-stained teeth that many would describe as “tombstones.”

Harry Clifton’s own mouth gaped open. He uttered no words, for it was not his place to question his headmaster. His mouth opened and closed so he resembled a goldfish. This could not be happening. Trousers down. Bend over my knee. No, it should be, Bend over that chair. It’s six of the best for you m’lad. The world’s order was being turned upside down. What game did the headmaster think he was playing?

“I’m waiting,” the headmaster growled. “Bend over,” and he slapped the palm of his right hand against his knee in case there could be any doubt about his instruction. Harry Clifton knew his face had flushed bright red; sweat made the collar of his shirt stick to his neck. His palms were once again damp. What should he do? Lower your trousers and bend over my knee. The words pounded in his head. What should he do? What could he do?. A chap expected a caning at a time like this. Commit a felon, bend over, whack-whack-whack-whack-whack-whack. Stand up. Dismissed. All over. The punishment fits the crime. The world moves on.

But, Lower your trousers and bend over my knee. That was not cricket. That was a nursey spanking. Something a chap might have expected from Mother when aged six. What was the headmaster thinking?

A disinterested observer might say Harry Clifton should tell the headmaster all this. “I’ll take a caning Sir, even trousers down if you insist, but I’ll not be humiliated by going over your knee.” But could Harry Clifton, or indeed any schoolboy faced with a similar predicament, say this? Harry Clifton was a bright boy and he weighed up the consequences of disobedience in seconds. The headmaster had instructed him to take a punishment and no matter how bizarre that might be he had no choice – absolutely no choice – but to obey.

Failure to comply would lead to suspension, or possible expulsion from the school. He would not be allowed to take his exams. He hoped to attend college, or even university, but without qualifications that would be impossible. No university meant no career. A life of drudgery as a clerk in some accountant’s office would be the best he could look forward to. He had to take the right decision.

Harry Clifton bit down hard on his bottom lip. He avoided looking at his tormentor as he unbuckled his belt. His pale-grey trousers were loose fitting and once he had unbuttoned the fly they slipped down over his thighs and knees and travelled at speed to rest in a puddle over his black lace-up shoes. He stood before his headmaster in gleaming white cotton Y-front underpants. His equally bright white shirt was long enough to cover most of his buttocks. Harry Clifton stood modestly with his hands clasped across his private parts.

He was an enthusiastic rugby player and quite used to undressing in company. Of course, after a match the whole team would romp naked in the showers and changing room. But standing here like this, trousers at his ankles in front of his headmaster, prior to going across the Beak’s knees for a little-boy’s spanking was beyond humiliating. How the sixth-former hated the vile, ugly bully.

“Bend over.” The command was terse. Harry Clifton peered down at the headmaster’s knees. They were thin and bony and encased in smart, striped trousers with a crease sharp enough to cut through cheese. Harry sucked on his bottom lip and pondered for a moment. How exactly was this done? Was he expected to leap over the Beak’s body, as if flying over a vaulting horse in the gym, and then land face down? Should he ease himself down gently by resting the palms of his hands on the headmaster’s thighs to steady himself as he spread his body forward?

“Pah!” the headmaster misunderstanding Harry Clifton’s hesitation for reluctance gripped the eighteen-year-old by the left wrist and tugged him forward with such ferocity that the boy tumbled forward. He stretched his arms in front of himself to avoid crashing and dug his palms into the ground. His nose was inches from the rug. Like this his head was low and his bottom was raised high over the headmaster’s thigh. Harry Clifton’s legs dangled in mid-air.

It took a second or two for him to recapture his breath. He was a trifle dizzy. Being prostrate across a man’s knees was an unusual posture and gave a boy a distorted view of the world. It had literally been turned upside down. How different it was to preparing to receive a caning. Then, a chap was required to “bend over” but whether he was across a chair or a desk or simply touching toes he always kept on his feet; he was vertical as it were, if he chose he could see what was going on around him. There was little disorientation.

Going over-the-knee was altogether different. Harry Clifton could see nothing but the old rug beneath his face; bent at this angle it was nearby impossible for him to turn his head. He was extremely vulnerable. He could see little but his other senses were unimpaired. His crotch ached as the weight of his body pressed against the headmaster’s thighs. He heard the Beak wheezing and felt the Old Man’s rough hand grip the tail of his shirt and tug it half way up his back. Then, a hand gently caressed the seat of his underpants as it smoothed away creases, even though the Y-fronts already fitted snugly. The hand patted and preened. Then it tapped gently across the fleshiest part of the left cheek.

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Suddenly. Spank! The hand swiped into the left buttock and then the right. Then it went high; then low. The headmaster smacked his rough hand with speed and force across Harry Clifton’s upturned buttocks. The boy stared down at the rug, his bemusement growing. He felt the hand strike his bottom again and again and again. The sound of hand hitting hard flesh resounded around the hot, airless study. It sounded like machinegun fire. The headmaster put all his beef into the spanking, delivering maybe eighty slaps in the first minute – and there were many more minutes to follow.

Harry Clifton lay face-down, head low, bottom high and let his headmaster get on with it. For he had quickly realised that a hand spanking did not hurt – even when delivered with vigour across the set of his tight, cotton underpants. Of course, he felt something. A tingling sensation. A slight warming of the flesh. But pain? No. A properly delivered six-of-the-best with any one of the three whippy, rattan canes that were at that moment still dangling from the hat stand could have had him howling. His bottom would feel like it had been beaten to become twice its natural size. Dark, vicious welts would throb beneath his underpants (even if he were allowed to keep his trousers up). The marks and associated bruises would last for days. He would display them proudly to the rugby boys in the showers.

But this? This over-the-knee spanking. Nothing. “My,” Harry Clifton pondered silently to himself, “I bet his hand is hurting more than my bum.” He almost smiled at the thought.

So, it went on. The headmaster spanked Harry Clifton on the seat of his underpants and the boy had to submissively allow him to do so. The headmaster was in control. There was peace in the nation. The Pound was sound. God was in his Heaven.

 

Picture credit: Sting Pictures

Other stories you might like

The military camp

Murph in the headmaster’s study

The housebreaker

 

More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Also writing school stories as Scholastic here

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

Porterhouse at St. Tom’s

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z used study (21)

Please come in, sorry you caught me making some notes for a story I’m writing. It’s about something that happened last evening. As you know I’m the head boy here at St. Tom’s school and that means one of my duties is to keep discipline among the boys here. Usually, that means punishing the younger boys when they step out of line. I probably swipe my rattan cane across two or three backsides a day. The actual number can depend on how rowdy the juniors are in the dormitory at night. My record is twelve boys in twenty minutes.

But that’s not the story I want to tell you today. This one’s about a fellow in the sixth-form. A chap called Porterhouse. He’s eighteen – the same age as me – and he’s a right rum fellow. He’s been at St. Tom’s all his life, but he’s never learned to behave himself. Most of the time he’s  worse than the juniors. Of course, he was never made a prefect. How could you put a chap like Porterhouse in charge of the youngsters.

You see what happened was this. It was on Tuesday that I sat alone in my study. It was a warm evening and I had completed my Greek essay and my mind was so engaged with it that I found it difficult to rest. I decided to take a stroll. I am not in the habit of patrolling the house after lights out. It is my prefects’ duty is to keep good order in the house. To that end they are expected to account that each boy is safely tucked up in his bed before they too retire for the night.

All was quiet, as indeed it should be at that hour. For no particular reason that I can recall, I ventured down the passageway that led to the junior studies. I could tell at once something was amiss. A shaft of light gleamed beneath the door of number five. As I approached my nostrils were assailed by a familiar scent. An aroma that was unwelcome in the junior boys’ studies. It was the smell of cigarette smoke.

I gripped the handle and twisted it. The door would not budge. It was locked. There was some illegal activity afoot. I hammered the palm of my hand against the heavy wooden panel.

Inside the study a little poker party was suddenly startled. Tracey jumped up, his hand of cards slipping from his fingers. “What the …” he exclaimed.

Wright, Amber and Prior were all on their feet. That sound could mean only one thing: either a prefect or a master had discovered their game.

“What dashed bad luck,” breathed Wright. “Quick get the cards out of sight.”

I banged again, somewhat louder this time. “Open up in there! Open up I say!”

“The smoke; we can’t clear the smoke,” hissed Amber, waving his arms around like a demon.

“Keep the door locked Wright,” whispered Prior. “Tell him you’ve dropped the key to make us some time.”

I continued banging.

“All right Sir,” called out Wright in a shaky voice while his chums frantically hurried cards and cigarettes out of sight. “I … I’ve dropped the key.”

I called out, “You will open this door immediately Wright. At once, or the consequences for you all will be very grave indeed.”

I heard the scrapping of the key in the lock and slowly the door eased ajar; but only by an inch. I pushed it open and strode into the study.

Four ashen-faced fourteen-year-old boys stood before me. They were dressed in their regulation red-and-white-striped pyjamas. The evidence of their crimes lay all around them. A deck of playing cards and hastily extinguished cigarettes. And also, cowering in the far corner of the room hoping against hope that he would not be spotted was Porterhouse.

I sent the four youngsters away. I would deal with them next day. My concern now was Porterhouse.

“Go wait outside my study,” I ordered. He looked sheepish as well he might. It is one thing for senior boys to play cards amongst themselves, but to take part in an illegal game with junior boys present. And smoking cigarettes! Can there be a greater crime that can be committed at boarding school than smoking cigarettes? Certainly, I for one cannot imagine.

I gave it a few minutes before I followed him. He stood nonchalantly, shoulders stooped, hands in pockets, professing not to have a care in the world. He didn’t fool me. “Come into the study,” I snarled as I brushed past him, “And be quick about it.” I unlocked the door and left it ajar. I strode to my desk and took the seat behind it. From this position I could dominate the whole room. “Close the door,” I barked as Porterhouse entered, his casual air, now a little deflated. I snapped my fingers, “Stand there,” I pointed to a spot on the worn rug. He shuffled into position, his hands still firmly rooted in the pockets of his trousers.

I let a small smile curl around my lips. If the idiot thought I wouldn’t thrash his backside because he was a senior boy, he had another thought coming. “So, Porterhouse,” I spoke calmly, “Let me get this straight. You were playing cards and smoking cigarettes with the junior boys.” Porterhouse remained silent. I hadn’t made it clear enough that this statement was meant as a question. I swear I saw the slightest smirk on his face. “Take your hands out of your pockets,” I growled. His nostrils flared, but with great ceremony he did as I instructed. For a moment he couldn’t decide where to put his arms. He tried leaving them at is sides, almost as if standing to attention. I suspect he thought this made him look too much like a supplicant, because within seconds he decided to clasp his hands behind his back. He was now poised rather like a minor member of the Royal Family.

I tried again, “Do you admit that you were playing cards and smoking cigarettes with the juniors?” This time my question was clear; Porterhouse would have to answer. He shrugged his shoulders. It was a noncommittal answer. That got my goat. “C’mon, Porterhouse,” I flared, “You were caught red-handed.”

He grinned insolently, “Then, I suppose it must be true.”

“Don’t get fresh with me, Porterhouse,” I barked, fighting to retain my temper. “You are in enough trouble as it is.”

“Oh,” his eyebrows raised heavenwards, “really?”

He was trying to goad me and he succeeded. “Yes, really!” I retorted, “I am  going to beat you Porterhouse, how do you like that?”

His face coloured, but he was full of spunk. “I don’t think so. I am a senior. Senior boys aren’t caned.”

That was true up to a point, indeed no senior boy had been caned in living memory, but that did not meant that he couldn’t be. I did not intend to argue with Porterhouse, so I played my trump card. “No? Perhaps you’d like to tell that to the Headmaster?”

I had won: game, set and match. If Porterhouse refused to be disciplined by me and the Headmaster was informed, Porterhouse could look forward to a severe bare-bottomed birching, followed by expulsion. I had him by the short-and-curlies. It was what our American cousins might call a lose-lose situation for Porterhouse. Colour drained from his face and he went quite pale.

“Good,” I intoned. There was nothing more to say. I had won and Porterhouse had lost. “Let’s say, jacket off, trousers down and bend across my desk.” I rose to my feet and tapped the top of my desk to emphasise my superiority. He stood dumbfounded. “Now, Porterhouse, it is long past our bedtimes.”

I walked across the study to the far corner where dangling from a coat stand by their curved handles were two whippy, rattan canes; one a little thicker than the other and both capable of leaving severe welts across the backside of a miscreant schoolboy. I reached up and took hold of the thickest of the two. It was a little longer than three-feet and had notches every six inches or so along its length. It was dark-yellow in colour and as thick as a pencil. I flexed it thoughtfully between my hands. Porterhouse had not moved. “Jacket off. Put it on that armchair.” I swished the cane through the air to demonstrate my impatience. If looks could kill, the glance Porterhouse gave me at that moment would have slain me. I suspect that only at this moment did it sink in that he had absolutely no choice in the matter.

“Hurry along,” I tried not to grin. He turned his back on me so I could not see his look of bewilderment and he unbuttoned his jacket. He slipped it from his shoulders and tossed it on to the armchair, a half-empty packet of cigarettes poked out from a side pocket. I made a mental note to confiscate them before I allowed Porterhouse to hobble from my study. With the jacket now removed, Porterhouse hesitated. “Stand by the desk,” I jollied him along. “Trousers down. All the way. Bend over.” I confess that by now I was thoroughly enjoying myself. I had never liked Porterhouse and I resented the way he disregarded the school and all it stood for. He refused to be one of the chaps. I couldn’t understand him. Why attend St. Tom’s if you had no intention of fitting in? Fitting in, and learning your place in the order of things, was the school’s very ethos.

I swiped the cane through empty air several times as I watched Porterhouse prepare himself. His trousers were held in place by several buttons and it took some moments of fumbling before he was able to release them. Once that was done, the heavy flannel bags fell easily to his feet. His off-white woollen drawers hung loosely and I was unable to discern even the outline of his private parts beneath them.

“Bend over Porterhouse,” I called and without further hesitation my eighteen-year-old school fellow swivelled on the heels of his leather shoes, faced the desk and slowly lowered himself forward. I had not instructed him to do so, but he chose to lay flat on his stomach and stretch his arms ahead of him and grip the far end with his fingers. At first he rested his chin on the cold wooden desktop, but realising this was an uncomfortable position to hold, he turned his head so that his left cheek rested on the desk and he gazed towards a picture of the King that was on the wall.

I tucked the cane under my arm and approached him. I took hold of the end of his shirt and tugged it up his back and away from my target area. Porterhouse’s body shivered, but he soon recovered. In this prone position the loose wool of his drawers had tightened a little against his beefy buttocks. I gripped hold of the waistband and Porterhouse let out an audible gasp. The sucker must have thought I was about to rip down his drawers so I could thrash him on the bared bottom. This was not my intention and instead I pulled the drawers tight so that the smooth material showed the outline of his cheeks and dug into his crack. Porterhouse closed his eyes.

I took up a position slightly behind Porterhouse and a little to his left – a cane’s length. I placed the tip of my cane against the centre of his right buttock and tapped. I was getting my aim. Although only eighteen years old myself, I have a great deal of experience with the cane. I knew that once I took my aim and then raised my cane in an arc away from the quivering buttocks I would be able to bring it down with as much force as I wished and strike both cheeks equally, leaving behind a deep, red throbbing welt. And that is precisely what I did. The crack of rattan against wool-covered flesh resounded around my small study. Porterhouse winced, but otherwise made no movement. Just as I am an experienced giver, it is certain that Porterhouse is an experienced receiver.

I landed the second stroke an inch higher across his bottom. The third went an inch lower than the first cut. His bottom now had three heavy cuts running along his backside in parallel. They would give Porterhouse something to play with under the blanket that night. I took a breather after three strokes to allow their full significance to be felt. Of course, as a younger boy I had been caned on several occasions myself – what boy at St. Tom’s could go through his entire school life untouched? – so I knew that the full agony of a cane stroke was not felt immediately the rod fell. The pain built and travelled from the posterior and through the body. Because of that I waited a full minute after I delivered the third stroke before I laid on the fourth.

This one struck into the soft undercurve. Porterhouse wriggled his hips when that one cut him. His knees buckled and his eyes opened wide, before immediately clamming shut again. I am no sadist. I am aware that some masters like to lay fresh strokes over ones that had previously landed. I am not that man. I sent the final two: one high, the other low, parallel to the others. Porterhouse had a well-welted bottom. He would not sleep comfortably and in the morning there would be marks; not that he would wish the other fellows to know he had been caned by me.

Porterhouse knew the rules of the house and remained bent across the desk until I gave him permission to rise and dress. This he did without fuss. He was unable to look at me while he did this and (kind heart that I am) I turned my back on him and took some time replacing my cane on the stand. This would give Porterhouse the opportunity to furtively rub his aching buttocks without my seeing.

“You are dismissed,” I said curtly and he strode from the study. Only after the door had closed and Porterhouse had scurried up the passageway did I remember about the cigarettes in his pocket. Oh, well, I consoled myself I had still not smoked the three packers I had confiscated from members of the junior rugby team earlier in the day.

 

Picture credit: The Magnet

Other stories you might like

The Gaffer of the Academy: 1. Beginnings

Murph in the headmaster’s study

Landlord is sick of the lodger

 

 

More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

My caning history

new 5

z used cane longs sting (15)

I was interviewed the other week by two delightful sixth-form schoolboys. They were doing a history project about the town and since I had lived in Brocklehurst for all my 76 years a local vicar I know pointed them in my direction. I had never thought of myself as a “historical figure” but they seemed like nice boys so I decided to oblige them.

They visited me at my home in The Avenue and because it was such nice weather we sat in my extensive garden. They complimented me on this and that row of plants and the small clump of trees that run along the far boundary. I accepted their praise, although I did not reveal that I have never in my life lifted a spade or a pair of secateurs and that I pay (quite handsomely I must say) a father and his son to visit twice a week during the season to keep it in tip-top condition.

But I digress, the boys who were called Clem and Jake recorded my voice on their phones, and because they were not writing notes it was very easy for us to chat along merrily. We sipped home-made lemonade (not, of course, made in my home) and ate small sticky cakes. It was a delightful occasion and we talked a lot about how Brocklehurst had changed over the years. I told them that I had attended their school sixty years ago. It had been a grammar school back then and things had changed greatly.

Naturally, we quickly got onto the subject of corporal punishment (as you do). Clem rolled his eyes in astonishment when I told him about the cane and how we boys regularly presented ourselves at the housemaster’s study for six-of-the-best across the seat of our trousers. His colleague Jake had a much deeper interest and asked me all sorts of questions and many of them were very detailed. Schoolboys today know nothing about corporal punishment, it was banned in schools sometime in the nineteen-eighties. Even Clem and Jake’s fathers wouldn’t have felt the swish of the rattan.

I told Jake and Clem they didn’t know they were born. Jake wanted to know more. When I was a boy we took corporal punishment for granted. It was everywhere; it was natural. Fathers routinely took a belt or a slipper to the backside of their errant sons. The plimsoll and the cane were in regular use in schools across the land. In Brocklehurst the parkkeepers would take off their belts to boys who fired their catapults at birds or squirrels. You could expect a clip round the ear (at the very least) from the local “bobby” – the police constable who patrolled the streets. When was the last time you saw a bobby on the beat?

But it was my experience at the school that interested Jake the most. The rule was that only housemasters and the head himself were permitted to cane a boy. The school was divided into various houses (the one I was in was called Wilson’s) and we would compete against other houses for sporting and academic awards. We were all encouraged to work hard for and be proud of our houses. It was a form of team-spirit, I suppose. Woe betide us If we let down the house.

Discipline was strict. There were all kinds of rules. Jake who was interviewing me had hair way over his ears. That wouldn’t be allowed in my day. Short back and side haircuts were the rule. If you tried to grow your hair a master would order you to the barbershop. If you didn’t go pronto you’d find yourself bent over in the housemaster’s study. Jake thought this was fascinating.

Discipline was strict and so was punishment. People who supported corporal punishment against critics who wanted to see it banned always said it was used as “a last resort”. They meant other punishments were tried and if they didn’t work only then would the cane be taken out of the cupboard. Not in my school: the cane was pretty much the first resort. We boys took it for granted. Break a rule, get found out, attend the housemaster’s study, bend over, whack-whack-whack-whack-whack-whack; six strokes of the cane and on your way. The problem sorted. There were hardly any detentions, writing lines was unheard of and there was no need for “exclusions” like they have these days.

I told Jake I got the cane so many times I couldn’t remember how many. He asked what was it like? Well, it was just part of the school day. I wasn’t an especially rebellious boy who took on the school; if I had been I wouldn’t have accepted the cane. I should have refused to be beaten. There were some who did. No one at my school but I heard an interview on radio a while back with a disc jockey who was famous in the nineteen-seventies. I forget his name. He was in the sixth-form and they took some beer into the common room. They got found out and the headmaster wielded his cane. The DJ chap refused to bend over and had to leave the school. Who knows if he had taken his punishment like a good fellow and stayed on at school to take his exams he might have had a better job than playing records.

No, I was no rebel. I just couldn’t stick to all the rules. So, I got the cane. That’s how it was. I had to explain to Jake what “the cane” actually was. There were rules about what you could and could not use to pepper a boy’s backside. At my school the cane was made out of very flexible rattan. It had a curved handle and was maybe three feet long (or a little shorter). We called our housemaster Hector because he had the hang down look of a well-known children’s cartoon character of the time. Hector had a big collection of canes: some thin and some a bit thicker. They were all very pliable and he liked to flex his cane between his hands and swish it through the air before he set about your rear end with it.

Jake wanted to know if the cane hurt. That made me smile. Of course a caning hurt, otherwise what’s the point of it? But, I had to admit it was something a boy got used to with each successive visit to the study. I was terrified on my first visit to Hector; we all were. What would happen? Would it hurt? Would we cry? Would we have to take down out trousers? Would we get it on the bare bottom?

There were a lot of stories going around the school that you could get the cane on your underpants. Nobody ever did, but it didn’t stop rumours flying. It did happen in some schools. I vaguely remember reading a report in a newspaper at the time about a court case. A housemaster from some elite boarding school was prosecuted for caning boys on the bare. They called it “sexual assault”. The magistrate or judge, or whoever it was, dismissed the case saying if this was sexual assault, then half the housemasters in the country would be in the dock. So, obviously a lot of boys were being caned on the bare bum back then; or at least they were when the magistrate was at school.

So, I never got in trousers down. Except for the first time, it was always six strokes. People often call it six-of-the-best, but that isn’t strictly true. The housemaster – should he so choose – could deliver no more than a flick of the wrist. That would hardly even raise the dust from the seat of the trousers. On another occasion he might flog the boy with all his energy and leave severe welts throbbing beneath his underpants. I suppose it depended on the mood of the housemaster, or the severity of the offense caused.

Jake was agog when I said that the last time I had been caned I was the same age as him. It was late in my final year. I had turned eighteen a few months earlier. It was so typical of my school. They had a rule that you couldn’t leave the premises during lesson time. The headmaster for some reason I cannot now recall had made a special mention of this rule at morning assembly. By this time classes for senior boys had halted and we were revising for exams. Bored one afternoon me and a couple of pals slipped away and idled around the town for an hour. We were spotted and reported.

Hector hit the roof. There was no point telling him that we hadn’t actually skipped any lessons. He said we had deliberately disobeyed the headmaster’s expressed rule. Such behaviour was intolerable. It could not be allowed. We had to be caned. Unlike that DJ I mentioned, it didn’t occur to any of us to refuse. Hector had a point. I don’t think we even considered the headmaster’s edict when we went AWOL, but we had broken the rules. If it had been a boy in any of the junior years he would be showing Hector his arse.

I had been caned so many times previously this final visit to the study held no terrors. I knew exactly what was going to happen. I said this to Jake and he insisted I tell him exactly what happened. He wanted on all the details. I joked that he was after a blow-by-blow account.

Hector’s study was in fact a very modern office. It was nothing like the ornately-furnished studies that were pictured in the classic stories about public school life, or you sometimes saw in old films on TV. There was a desk made of light wood and some ordinary wooden chairs. There was no open fire or glass-fronted bookcases. Hector didn’t wear a heavy academic gown or one of those crazy mortar-board caps with the tassel hanging down the back. He was dressed in an ordinary suit and wouldn’t have been out of place working in an office for the local council.

When it was my turn to be done, he made me stand in the middle of the room. One of the straight-backed chairs had already been strategically placed in space in front of his desk. He didn’t interrogate me, we had already established my guilt. I waited patiently for the inevitable command. If I was anxious at all it was just that I was anxious for it to be over, so I could go home and carry on revising for an exam I had to take the next day.

The cane was on his desk. I saw immediately that it was one of his stouter and thicker specimens. I had no doubt that Hector intended to lay it on hard. This was going to hurt. I watched as he reached across his desk and took up the cane. He swiped it through the air and then walked towards me, flexing it all the while in his hands. Such action might have intimidated a younger, less experienced, boy. Hector was demonstrating the power of that cane. His showboating was wasted on me: I already knew.

Hector tapped the tip of the cane on the seat of the chair and intoned those words that must have instilled dread in generations of schoolboys: “Bend over the chair.” It was an ordinary chair, but the back was quite high and my stomach rested comfortably on its highest point. I took hold of either side of the seat. It was summer so I wasn’t wearing a blazer and my striped school tie fell in front of my face. I spread my legs a little and lifted my head so I could stare across the study at a photograph of last year’s house rugby XV.

A less experienced boy than myself might have felt foolish or even humiliated submitting his backside to the attention of a much older man in the knowledge that at any moment he intended to inflict the greatest pain possible. I had no such feeling; it was what it was. This was a ritual that had taken place in that study, perhaps every day for countless years. Back then we had no reason to believe that such things would ever change.

I couldn’t see Hector because I was concentrating on the rugby photograph, but I could hear his body moving. Then, I felt the tap-tap-tap of the cane against my right buttock. He was taking his aim. I clenched my hands and held the chair seat tighter. Hector raised the cane away from the seat of my trousers and a second later there was an almighty whacking noise as it connected with the fleshiest part of my bum. It remained numb for maybe another second and then I felt the familiar deep burning pain. It hurt! A lot! It was by far the hardest stroke of the cane I had received in my considerable career. I didn’t yell out. I didn’t stomp and wriggle. I let the pain sink in.

There was another series of taps as Hector got his mark to deliver Number Two a little lower than the first. This was a typical caning method. You put a strip along the dead centre of the buttocks and then land subsequent cuts above and below that first marker. Hector always made sure to land at least one in the undercurve on the “sit-spot” just where the bum connects with the back of the thighs. You need to be an expert marksman to get it right. Many lesser caners than Hector would strike the back of the thighs themselves and that would be agony. It helps also if the boy being beaten has the fortitude to keep still and not move about and distract the master. I had that fortitude and Hector duly put a cut there. It was a deep stripe and I felt it every time I sat on a hard surface for days to come.

In our school we had what was called by the boys a “headmaster’s caning”. He would deliver the first four strokes as I have described but for the final two he would lay the cane along one diagonal so it went from the bottom of one cheek to the top of the other and then he would reverse the diagonal for the last stoke. It meant the cane twice intersected the already throbbing and possibly weeping strokes he had already administered. This was a particularly awesome punishment. I never experienced it personally, but one friend of mine who did sportingly showed us his bared bottom. We admired the perfect “X” mark that decorated his buttocks.

The six stokes Hector gave me were definitely his “best”. My bum was alight. Each successive stroke added to the pain until my arse felt like it had swollen to twice its natural size. Hector left me bent across the chair while he returned the cane to his desk. He had not finished yet, there was still one more boy to beat after me. Even in the few seconds he left me waiting the pain was subsiding. That is one of the attributes of a severe caning. The pain as the rod strikes is intense. It burns like the fires of Hell and quickly radiates from the point of impact. That initial pain is doubled by the second stroke and is added to until the whole punishment has been administered. Then, almost immediately the caning is over, the pain diminishes. Even then as I lay across the chair waiting to be dismissed the pain had eased. It was still an intense throbbing but I knew that very soon that would become an ache and then only an irritable discomfort.

Hector told me to stand. I did so and he quickly sent me on my way, telling me to send in the next boy as I went.

I could tell Jake was transfixed by my story and he probably wanted more detail, but some innate sensibility cautioned him not to display too much interest. We spoke of other things; school sports, the Officers’ Training Corps and so on. Clem and Jake politely thanked me for my time and went on their way. I took the lemonade and poured what was left of it in the sink. I took an opened bottle of white wine from the fridge and poured myself a generous helping. I sat in my favourite chair and replayed the past hour in my mind.

I took a big slug of wine and castigated myself for one oversight in my story. I had not told Jake that I myself possessed a couple of school-type canes that I keep in the wardrobe in my spare bedroom. I am sure he would have liked to see them.

Picture credit; Sting Pictures

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

 

John’s jam jar

new 5

z used jar money drawing

John Hepplewhite was a modest man, he didn’t ask for much in life and he didn’t get it. He lived on a small pension from the Post Office and what he got from the state. He lived alone in two rented rooms and because he was trying to save money he would spend a lot of time at the House of the Sacred Light pensioners’ club where he could sit in the warm, read the newspapers and drink countless cups of tea without having to pay. And, what if from time to time he had to listen to some ruddy-faced fellow wittering on about the Bible.

He did his shopping at the shops and the market where they sold off perishable food cheaply late in the day. At home he never lit more than one bar on the electric fire. John Hepplewhite didn’t think of himself as poor. He was careful with his money. Hidden away at the back of the larder was an old jam jar. Into this he put every spare copper coin he had. Sometimes, when he had been especially careful, or he skipped a meal and made up for it with even more cups of tea at the House of the Sacred Light, he added silver. John Hepplewhite was saving for his special treat.

When the jar was about half full – for that was all he needed – he took it along to the post office where he used to work, and where he still collected his pension, and Mavis, a jolly old type, would patiently count out the coins and change them to banknotes. John Hepplewhite could scarcely contain his excitement and even though Mavis had known him for years she could never get him to tell him what he was saving for.

John Hepplewhite, now greatly excited and with the banknotes tucked securely in the inside pocket of his heavy coat, he trudged down the High Street to the public phone box. Of course, he wouldn’t dream of paying to have a phone at home, not even with the special rates they gave pensioners. His hands didn’t usually tremble, but they did as he lifted the receiver and dialled the number. He knew it by heart, he had rung it before many times. The phone at the other end rang and rang and John Hepplewhite was about to throw down the handset when there was a click and man with a smooth voice answered. John Hepplewhite beamed like a small boy with a new toy. The call concluded, John Hepplewhite returned to his rooms, not now trudging but walking on air, or walking on air as much as a man his age could.

Two days later John Hepplewhite took a bus into the suburbs. He had a pensioners’ pass so he didn’t have to pay the fare. He had already put its equivalent into his jam jar for the next treat. He got off near Widdicombe Wood and had to walk half a mile to get to his destination. It was late spring, the sun was shining but it was still a little cold. John Hepplewhite was as happy as any man could be. He lived for days like this.

He turned into a street called The Avenue, it was a long thoroughfare but entirely deserted of people. The large houses were mostly hidden behind walls or fences and sometimes high hedges. The house he wanted was half way down. He liked that no one was about, it made him feel safe. He didn’t like prying eyes. He saw a large figure on a bicycle ride towards him; as it got closer he saw he was dressed in a bright red school blazer. Instinctively, John Hepplewhite looked at his watch; it was not yet noon. As the bicycle approached and then passed him, John Hepplewhite noticed the boy also wore pale-grey short trousers. John Hepplewhite turned and watched him cycle off into the distance. He smiled broadly, the “boy” was at least forty if he were a day.

John Hepplewhite paused at the gate to number 42. The house itself was set back from the road with a wide shingle path leading to it. John Hepplewhite’s heartrate quickened and his mouth dried. He checked his watch again to make sure he was not early (he had never once been late for this appointment) and satisfied all was well he set off up the path. He rang the doorbell and since he was expected he was not surprised the door was opened instantly. An older women, dressed austerely in a long shapeless black skirt and a white blouse buttoned to her throat welcomed him in.

“Wait in the hallway,” she said abruptly and certain that he would comply with her instruction, she immediately waddled away and entered a room at the far end. John Hepplewhite knew the house well. There were five identical doors leading from the hallway, each made of heavy oak. A coat stand stood in the corner close to the door and there were two small tables along a wall. A grandfather clock that John Hepplewhite had never seen working leaned forlornly in another corner. There were no pictures on the wall but there was a full-length mirror that John Hepplewhite always avoided on his visits. He had no wish to see the reflection of a flabby old man staring back at him.

The woman was gone for five minutes and then she returned and briskly said, “Go into that room and change.” John Hepplewhite had been expecting this and without even a murmur he took the few paces needed to reach the door, he turned the handle and went in. The room was a library of sorts. In some houses it would be called a living room or a drawing room. This was a “library” because there were shelves of books. In the centre was a large oak table with matching chairs. Two leather armchairs were placed either side of a low coffee table. It took John Hepplewhite only seconds to survey the room. He was familiar with its layout and soon found what he was seeking.

Without hesitation, he began to strip off his clothes. He was nearly seventy and he was proud that he was still sprightly, unlike some of the others at the pensioners’ club who could no longer put on their own socks. He was soon completely naked. He stood admiring the collection of goods displayed on the oak table. He took hold of the white cotton briefs with Y-shaped front and elasticated waist band. He steadied himself against the table as he stepped into them. They fitted snuggly against his buttocks.

Then, he pulled the white singlet over his head and the snugness of the cotton against his flesh emphasised his flabby belly. In the correct fashion, he tucked the singlet into the waistband of his underpants. John Hepplewhite ran his eye across the oak table, his tongue darted through his pursed lips as he chose the grey shirt from a paper wrapper. It felt recently ironed and as he climbed into it he caught the distinct aroma of the starch that had stiffened the collar.

Next came his favourite; he lovingly fingered the grey short trousers, they were made of flannel and immaculately laundered and pressed and if he didn’t take care he might have cut his finger on the crease down the front. He felt his withered penis stir. He had no idea why, but short trousers always did this to him. He unfastened the button at the waist, and then the three on the fly, opened the top of the trousers and stepped in. Within seconds he had pulled them up and was tucking in the shirt and vest. The short trousers were especially tailored and fitted him snuggly.

He buttoned the shirt and found his school tie. It was of red and green diagonal stripes. There was no mirror and John Hepplewhite made several attempts to knot the tie neatly. His previous reservation about the mirror was gone. He so wanted to admire his appearance. He walked to the window and failing to see his reflection he sat in an armchair and pulled up his woollen stockings. They were so long they reached up his thighs and there was hardly an inch of flesh left uncovered between sock and trousers. He folded over the tops of the stockings until they were tucked just below the knees.

Soon he was in his shiny black lace-up shoes. He was not quite ready. His school blazer was on a heavy wooden coat-hanger. John Hepplewhite caressed the lapel between his finger and thumb. The quality of the cloth was superb; he picked it up and smelled its freshness. It fitted him well, as always. Finally, he took hold of the woollen cap and carefully placed it squarely on his head. It completely covered his recently cut short-back-and-sides haircut, as it was intended to. He was ready. At that moment the door edged open slowly and the old lady appeared. She appraised the situation and happy that John Hepplewhite was dressed she said, “The headmaster is waiting for you boy! Do not keep him waiting.”

John Hepplewhite rubbed his sweaty palms on his blazer and with a mixed feeling of anxiety and excitement he left the room and crossed the hallway. The old woman had left, her job completed for the moment. He stopped, peered at a sign displaying the word “Headmaster” in worn lettering, took a deep breath and rapped his knuckles on the door. His heart raced in anticipation of the response. It was some time coming. At last a voice boomed, “Come!” John Hepplewhite slowly turned the handle, it was a heavy door and he almost had to put his shoulder to it to get it to budge. He stood in the threshold. “Ah Hepplewhite, come in. Close the door. Stand there boy.”

The words were intoned by an imposing figure seated at a large mahogany desk. He wore a dark suit enclosed in a heavy, black academic gown. On his head balanced a mortarboard cap. The figure steepled his fingers and leaned back in a large leather chair. “You again, Hepplewhite,” he peered down his beaked nose. “This is becoming something of a habit, boy.”

Hepplewhite nodded meekly, but said nothing. He clasped his hands behind his back and stood, feet slightly apart. He looked intently at the headmaster who continued his lecture. “Your geography master informs me that you have failed on two separate occasions to complete your prep. You failed to present an imposition he duly set and you were insolent when he questioned you about it,” saliva dribbled from  his mouth. “Well boy! What have you to say for yourself?” he snapped.

The ferocity of the headmaster’s questioning rocked Hepplewhite. He burbled something unintelligible. The headmaster leaned forward, placed the palms of his hands on the desk and roared, “Hepplewhite I trust you are not trying to be insolent now!” Hepplewhite found his voice, “Oh no sir, truly sir, no sir, sorry sir,” but he was almost as incoherent as before.

The headmaster steepled his fingers once more. “Pah! I’m going to thrash you Hepplewhite. Thrash you. You deserve nothing less.” Hepplewhite’s faced flushed, “Crikey,” he said. “No please sir, don’t cane me sir. I shall be good.”

The headmaster grimaced, “Quiet! Stand in the corner. Hands on head. Contemplate your sins. Think about what’s coming to you.” He watched with satisfaction as the wretched boy before him, his face a picture of misery, turned and shuffled away. “Right in the corner,” the headmaster called after him, “I want to see your nose touching the wall.” He leaned back in his chair, then opened and closed drawers to his desk. He was not looking for anything, this was part of his ritual. He would give Hepplewhite ample time to anticipate what was to come.

After five minutes, the headmaster rose from the desk. “Let’s get on with this shall we,” he stated abruptly. “Turn around boy,” and when Hepplewhite did so and took his hands from his head, the headmaster who was incapable of speaking in a normal voice, roared, “I did not give you permission! Hands on head, boy!”

“Sorry sir,” Hepplewhite croaked. His eyes followed the headmaster as he walked across the study. He stopped when he reached a tall, thin cupboard. With great deliberation he reached into his pocket and after fumbling around he withdrew a small key. Hepplewhite watched with increasing anticipation as the headmaster opened the cupboard door and reached inside. The rattle as several thin, whippy canes were moved around seemed to fill the room. Hepplewhite licked his bottom lip and gulped; his mouth was now completely dry.

He watched as the headmaster withdrew a cane. It was a typical school punishment cane, about three feet long and as thick as a pencil with the traditional curved handle. The headmaster showed it to Hepplewhite whose eyes widened. He recognised it. The headmaster had thrashed him with that very stick on his last visit to the study. The headmaster flexed it between his hands and studied it closely as if he had never seen it before. He frowned, and replaced it in the cupboard. “I have acquired a new cane,” he said as he reached inside again. “It is especially suitable for senior boys. For recidivists. For boys who return to my study time after time. It is a Malacca!”

He showed the cane to Hepplewhite. It was much the same size and shape as the previous cane but as the headmaster bent it between his hands and then swished it through the air, Hepplewhite saw it was extremely dense, but whippy. It looked an awesome weapon. “Yes,” the headmaster spoke as if to himself only, “This will be very suitable.” He looked over at Hepplewhite who was still standing submissively, hands on head. “Go there,” the headmaster swished the cane in the general direction of a low leather armchair. “Bend over. You know what to do Hepplewhite.”

z used drawing cane quelch (38a) (2)

Indeed he did. He was no stranger to the headmaster’s study. Still with his hands on his head he took the three paces necessary to get into position. He looked at the chair in front of him. He was easily tall enough to clear its back. “Bend over Hepplewhite,” the headmaster growled, “He haven’t all afternoon.” He swished the cane to emphasise his impatience.

Hepplewhite took his hands from his head, rubbed them together and then fell forward. He stretched his arms out ahead of him and gripped the front of the seat cover. In this position his school cap remained firmly on his head. He spread his feet and jutted out his bottom, submissively. He heard footsteps behind him and a terrific swishing noise as the headmaster took practice swipes with his heavy cane. Then, in quick succession he felt a hand gripped the tail of his blazer and pushed it up his back and away from the target area; followed by the cane “sawing” across the centre of his bottom. Suddenly, it was lifted away and returned with great force so that it cut across both cheeks equally.

It hurt Hepplewhite, but not much. He had received harsher strokes in the past. He waited patiently; this time the headmaster tap-tapped the cane into the softer undercurve of his buttocks. The cane rose and fell. It was a harsher stroke but Hepplewhite was not deceived, he knew the headmaster was just warming up. He took four more strokes so that now his bottom sported six lines running parallel to each other. The headmaster was an expert with the cane, each had fallen precisely where he intended.

“Stand up Hepplewhite,” the headmaster placed the cane under his arm and paced the study. When Hepplewhite was on his feet, the headmaster glared, “Shorts down Hepplewhite, bend back over.” Still facing the chair, Hepplewhite fumbled with the waistband of his grey short trousers and then the fly buttons. It would have been difficult enough for him to perform this task even if his fingers had not been trembling. At last the immaculate short trousers were open. They fell easily down his thighs and snagged at the knees. He opened them and they continued to the floor. Without hesitation, Hepplewhite threw himself back over the chair. This time his cap fell from his head and slipped to the floor.

The headmaster tidied Hepplewhite’s blazer once more and was presented with an expanse of white cotton underpants. He “sawed” the cane once more taking note of how it sank deep into Hepplewhite’s fleshy buttocks. This swipe was the hardest yet and the headmaster was rewarded with the sight of Hepplewhite’s knees buckling. Hepplewhite gripped the cushion harder, but before he could settle himself properly the second and third strokes bounced off his bum.

“Ouch!” it was a genuine cry of pain. The headmaster knew this for certain because Hepplewhite like several of his pupils usually reacted with the somewhat overstated yell of “Yarrooo!” during a caning.

The next three were harder still. Hepplewhite wriggled his hips and stamped his feet. This was genuine. His heart raced and his breath came in shallow pants. “Up Hepplewhite,” the headmaster strolled the study once more. Hepplewhite rubbed his rubbery buttocks ruefully. “Leave it alone boy! You know the rules,” the headmaster growled. Hepplewhite’s hand immediately sprang to his sides. “Pants down. Back over.” It was a simple command, given without histrionics for the headmaster had no doubt Hepplewhite would obey. The headmaster was in control.

Indeed Hepplewhite did not argue, he simply slipped his thumbs inside the waistband of the white cotton Y-fronts and with not much more than a flick of the wrist he sent them sliding to his knees. Not waiting to ensure they reached his feet he dived over the back of the chair. As the headmaster for the third time moved the blazer out of the way he took careful note of the dozen lines that now emblazoned Hepplewhite’s hairy bum. He congratulated himself on a job well done. “Brace yourself boy,” he called with some good humour as he sent the first of six absolute stingers across Hepplewhite’s bared bottom. Air whistled through his clenched teeth, he writhed and his shoulders rose a little.

Swipe! This one had Hepplewhite crossing one foot over the other to stop himself jumping up. His temples pulsated just as quickly as his bottom. This caning was proving hard to take. The headmaster never liked to draw blood during a caning so he aimed his cane at one of the few places that had not yet been touched. Thankfully, Hepplewhite’s bum was large so this gave him the opportunity to lay one high on the apex of the mounds. He was rewarded by the sight of a deep red line and a hissing boy.

At last the final of the six was delivered. It had been quite an ordeal: six-six-and-six; it wasn’t a punishment for a novice. The headmaster ambled leisurely toward the cupboard and then taking his time he found the key, unlocked the door and returned the cane to rest alongside its companions. All the while Hepplewhite stared down at the seat cushion. His bum was on fire; a caning on the bare, even if lightly delivered – and this one had not been – is always a severe punishment. The intense agony was quickly dissolving into a sore ache. It had been a harsh punishment, but he had survived.

At last the headmaster called across the study, “You may stand now, Hepplewhite.” He watched as he hauled himself to his feet. The short trousers and Y-fronts were in a puddle at his feet. Hepplewhite leaned down to retrieve them but was cut short, “Leave them be!” the headmaster snarled, “I have not finished with you! Stand back in the corner. Hands on head.”

Meekly, Hepplewhite waddled like a penguin until he resumed his place, nose pressed against the wall. The headmaster returned to his desk and sat back in his hair. From this position he had a superb view of Hepplewhite’s battered bottom. He watched the clock on the mantelpiece, keeping a close eye on the time and when he was ready he reached down to the bottom drawer of his desk. In it was the book where an official record of corporal punishment was kept. He drew this out and put it on the desktop and then returned to the drawer.

He stood up and walked in front of the desk, there he picked up a straight backed chair and manoeuvred it into the centre of the room. He sat down and with a little difficulty adjusted his academic gown so he became comfortable. Once satisfied he spoke with a haughty air. “Turn around Hepplewhite and face me.”

Hepplewhite did so and his jaw dropped open. He had not expected this. Seated in the straight-backed wooden chair was the headmaster and in his fist he gripped an off-white rubber-soled plimsoll, the type of slipper generations of schoolboys had worn for physical education classes.

The headmaster released his grip on the plimsoll and let it rest on his lap. He snapped his fingers, “Stand there boy,” he pointed to a spot close to his right thigh. As Hepplewhite waddled across the study, the headmaster took up the plimsoll again. He waited for the full import of the situation was clear to Hepplewhite and then intoned, “Bend over my knee.”

Without instruction, Hepplewhite slipped the blazer from his shoulders and tossed it to the floor. Then he dropped forward so quickly that he hurt his shoulder because he had to push his arms ahead of himself to break his fall against the hard ground. He pressed his palms firmly into the floor and bent his knees so that his bare bottom pointed at an angle over the headmaster’s thigh. He waited impatiently as the headmaster carefully folded his shirttail so that it bared his lower back. The headmaster took a firm hold of him around the waist and thwacked the hard slipper into his already-sore backside. The burning sensation was terrific.

And so it went on like that until the clock on the mantlepiece confirmed the hour was over. Hepplewhite dressed himself in his school uniform once more and the headmaster divested himself of gown and cap. And like that John Hepplewhite and the headmaster repaired to the kitchen and enjoyed a nice cup of tea, while the old woman discreetly counted the banknotes.

 

Picture credit: Unknown /  Charles Chapman (The Magnet)

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Late home from school

A Fragment of a Memory

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com