The Gaffer of The Academy 1: Beginnings

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All we schoolboys despised The Gaffer: from the very first time he joined The Academy to take over as Head of Sixth Form.

And, the loathing quickly turned to hatred when he demonstrated he could beat our backsides black and blue whenever he felt the need.

He was an ugly squat man and some of the boys joked he was as wide as he was tall. We hated him especially the first time he opened his mouth and revealed to us that he was from the northeast of England. When I look back now I realise we were odious snobs, but I blame the school for that: The Academy catered for the sons of the high professional classes, and even some from the minor aristocracy, and we were taught we were superior to the lower orders.

We knew The Gaffer was definitely not “one of us” the moment we heard him speak. To us boys the northeast accent, or ‘Geordie’ as it was known, belonged to coalminers and shipbuilders. We immediately nicknamed him ‘The Gaffer’ which we supposed was what working class people called their boss.

The Gaffer joined The Academy with what today would be called ‘an agenda.’ The headmaster had told him the boys of the sixth form were slacking and that we were disregarding rules and forgetting we were schoolchildren.

He was right up to a point, we were aged eighteen and even though in those days you didn’t legally become an adult until you were twenty-one, we considered we had already reached that status and should be treated accordingly.

The headmaster and The Gaffer saw it differently: whatever our ages, we were schoolboys and we were expected to behave like that. More so, we were senior pupils and it was up to us to set an example to the juniors.

The Gaffer knew he had to stamp down on our behaviour and do it quickly if he were to make any impact. So, right from the start he had the school rules printed out and posted on the noticeboard in the sixth form common room. In a lecture, he told us we were expected to follow the rules to the letter and any deviation from them would result in punishment: corporal punishment.

He let that last statement hang it he air a bit. None of us were surprised by this: corporal punishment was used frequently at The Academy. There couldn’t have been a boy in the whole school who hadn’t been slippered, tawsed, paddled or caned at least once in his career. The boys who were borders, that is they slept at the school at nights and weekends, were the most vulnerable: there were so many rules that could be broken.

Imagine, you were, say, a sixteen-year-old boy in the boarding school; you were expected to be in your ‘house’ by 9pm and start preparing for bed. Failure to comply with this rule would get you three strokes on the seat of the trousers from the housemaster. How different to the ‘day boy’ who would go home to his family at the end of the afternoon. How many parents did you know who would order their teenaged son to bend over the armchair for the cane, if he wasn’t in bed at nine?

We sixth formers knew all about corporal punishment and The Academy but we supposed that by the time we reached the age of eighteen our backsides would be safe from the cane.

The Gaffer wanted to make an example: he didn’t mind who the victim was, but one of us would have bend over in front of the whole sixth form and be punished severely – to encourage the others.

We were on our very best behaviour: we arrived at school on time and stayed all day (lessons weren’t timetabled for the whole day so the day boys usually drifted off home early). We stayed in school during ‘play time’ and avoided the back of the gymnasium; an area which the whole school knew was reserved for sixth former smokers.

The Gaffer became quite frustrated: based on our recent performances he supposed he could catch one or other of us out and deliver the public thrashing as planned without delay.

Eventually, he went seeking his victim and picked one of the ‘teenager poets.’ Most schools have teenager poets; they are the older pupils who think they are intellectuals and spend most of their days sneering at everyone else. They grow their hair a little too long and don’t knot up their neckties correctly. And, they criticise the ‘petty rules’ of the school, while (usually) ensuring that they themselves abide by them.

McCain was such a teenager poet. I don’t know if he literally wrote verse, but he was a ‘sneerer’ and had spoken out (but not in the earshot of the man himself) against The Gaffer and his new regime.

Most of the boys in the sixth form disliked McCain: he was just too full of himself. We were after all the people he spent most of the time sneering at: especially those of us who declared an admiration of sport or the popular music of the time.

So, when The Gaffer announced all the sixth formers must meet in classroom 21at the end of the school day, we might have been delighted to hear McCain was up for a public beating: but, in the pecking order of school life, we hated The Gaffer more than we did McCain.

We entered the classroom in hushed tones, like we were at church for a funeral. In other circumstances we schoolboys would have been delighted to see one of our own beaten, observing and later criticising how well he took his whipping. A boy who showed any sign that his beating had hurt, or worse he cried, would be teased mercilessly for the rest of the term.

The room filled quickly and we waited for the stars of the show, McCain and The Gaffer to arrive. The classroom was one of the largest in the school with room for about thirty boys. We sat at light brown wooden desks; some were connected together so that pupils sat thigh to thigh on benches. Other desks were single-seaters. All of the desks sloped and could open upwards so we could stash away our schoolbooks, or any contraband we didn’t want the schoolmaster to see. Along the top of the desks ran a groove for the pupil’s pens and pencils and each had an open inkwell.

I knew from experience (my own painful experience) that a teenaged boy could bend himself across the desk, down the slope, to present his backside at a perfect angle to receive the lash of the master’s cane. Some of the desks had thin wooden legs and the pupil could grab onto these for dear life during the beating, which is what I did when Thompson, the maths master, had beaten me when I was in the fifth.

All the pupils’ desks in the front of the room were occupied so The Gaffer would have to make McCain lay across the master’s desk for his caning. It was quite small and McCain was tall for his age, so he should be able to reach across it with his stomach flat on the wooden top and his arms outstretched ahead and his hands gripping the far edge.

The door opened and The Gaffer entered, with McCain, head bowed, shuffling a couple of paces behind. We all stood to attention as the master entered, as was the custom at The Academy.

Even with his head lowered, McCain towered over the schoolmaster. He was quite a thin, wiry boy and already he had grown to at least six feet tall. Otherwise, he looked like a typical schoolboy, dressed in white shirt and grey trousers. His green and yellow stripped school tie had never been knotted so tightly in his life. McCain might have declared himself to be a ‘Bohemian,’ but his appearance belied this. He was always dressed immaculately; his mother took a great deal of pride in her son’s clothes. His shirt sparkled and a person could cut their finger on the sharp creases in his trousers and shirt. Only his scuffed black shoes gave any indication that he might not wish to be the model The Academy schoolboy.

The Gaffer stood in front of the blackboard and easel to start a prepared sermon. He recounted the rules of the school, why they were there, why they should not be broken, and the special responsibilities sixth formers had to the school. He spoke without notes, but was word perfect: he had spent a lot of time rehearsing this scene.

The sermon, nearly over, he moved on to the main event of the afternoon: the punishment. All we boys had talked about nothing else that afternoon and we expected to hear the instruction: “Bend over that desk.” McCain would do as he were ordered, The Gaffer would (with some ceremony no doubt) lash six-of-the-best into McCain’s bum. The boy would be dismissed and we could all go home.

It was only then that I realised The Gaffer did not possess a cane; surely he hadn’t forgotten to bring one with him. I scanned the room to see if one had been left out for his use. In some classrooms a demonic master might have his whippy cane on display, perhaps hanging by its curved handle from the blackboard easel, where every boy would be able to see the consequence of his bad behaviour.

One master who taught me in my first year even had a selection of canes standing in a basket in the corner of the room.

I couldn’t see a cane anywhere: but I didn’t realise The Gaffer had other ideas.

Having warned us all that corporal punishment was his preferred method of correction and that any one of us could expect such treatment in future, he stepped behind the master’s desk, picked up a large straight-backed wooden chair and manoeuvred it into the space between the pupils’ desks and the blackboard.

Then he sat down. The Gaffer was squat when he was standing and even smaller seated. He had to manipulate his academic gown so that he didn’t tread on its hem. To accomplish this he moved his buttocks from left to right and pulled his robe up his shins. Eventually, he was satisfied so he spread his feet about three feet apart and turned to look at McCain whose eyes had not left the floor from the moment he entered the classroom.

“Take down your trousers and bend over my knee,” The Gaffer said, as if it had been the most reasonable request that any schoolmaster might make of his eighteen-year-old pupil.

There was an astonished intake of breath from the class. Then you could’ve heard a pin drop. McCain’s was startled. His eyes shot from the ground to look at The Gaffer. His face was full of contempt. He was as astounded as his classmates. I could read his face as easily as any book. He was thinking: have I heard correctly? Take down your trousers. Bend over my knee.

Yes, he had heard him all right. That’s what The Gaffer had said. I could see McCain was thinking it over: should he do as instructed? What would be the consequences if he did not obey? Of course, today, if a schoolmaster tried to spank a pupil in this way the police would be called, but in those days the schoolmaster was the law and he could get away with anything – short of actually flogging a boy to death.

The Gaffer slapped his left thigh to emphasis his point. “Bend over boy.”

McCain avoided eye contact with the rest of us. He had made his decision: he had no choice: like any schoolboy he was required to do as his master dictated – without question. He was as embarrassed as hell as he unbuckled his belt and released the top button at his waistband. In no time the fly zipper was undone and he pushed his grey school trousers down to his knees, to reveal the tightly fitting gleaming white Y-front underpants he was wearing underneath; the front bulging. I wouldn’t have been the only boy in the room to have admired McCain’s package in the showers after a gym class. There was no doubting he was a young adult and not a little boy.

His face was scarlet as he turned side on to The Gaffer and obediently lowered himself across the man’s knees, placing the palms of his hands flat down into the dirty floor tiles. He kept his head high so that he could see straight ahead, but all the while avoiding eye contact with the rest of us. He seemed to be thinking: this can’t really be happening to me. I am not really bent across The Gaffer’s knee with my trousers at my knees waiting for him to spank me on the seat of my underpants.

McCain was far too tall to fit comfortably across The Gaffer’s knees, a sight that emphasised to me the absurdity of the situation. The lanky eighteen-year-old schoolboy was about to be spanked as if he were a seven year old.

The Gaffer could have chosen a more suitable target, I thought as I caught sight of Trinder sitting in the second row of the classroom. Trinder was as undersized for his age as McCain was over. Trinder had a medical condition (was it something to do with hormones?) and he looked about fourteen years old. I knew he could get away with paying the child fare on the trolleybuses. His short-back-and-sides haircut, bright brown eyes and almost completely hairless body stressed his child-like qualities.

The Gaffer should have taken Trinder across his knee: at least he would have slotted into place and the spectacle in front of me would be more visually pleasing. Perhaps, Trinder even deserved a spanking for dodging his fares.

While I was imagining that it was the delicious Trinder across the Gaffer’s knee, McCain did something I thought was extraordinary. Realising he was too tall for this spanking position he bent his knees in towards The Gaffer’s body. This had the effect of raising his bottom higher on the man’s right leg so that his buttocks pointed right up at him. He was saying: here you are, I am submissive, you can do with me what you want.

McCain closed his eyes tight and waited for the spanking to begin. But The Gaffer kept us waiting. He smoothed out the boy’s white cotton pants so they fitted across his globes like a second skin. (McCain’s mother would be so pleased at their cleanliness. In those days people would say you should change your underpants every day in case you were involved in a traffic accident. Now, at The Academy we would have to say: change every day in case you have to go over The Gaffer’s knee for a spanking.)

Then, daintily with both hands he took the tail of the boy’s crisp white shirt and moved it half way up his back. Then, without warning he slapped his hand down into the right cheek. And, then again into the left cheek.

McCain filled out his underpants very well. As each slap smacked into him I could see the fleshy globe absorb the impact. The Gaffer kept up a steady rhythm: one cheek then the other. McCain gasped a little, but I don’t suppose the spanking was hurting much. At worst he would feel a glowing tingle. A spanking by hand on the pants was never going to be too painful for an eighteen-year-old boy; not like it would be with a hairbrush, or a slipper or, say, a belt.

The Gaffer continued smacking alternate cheeks: slap, slap, slap, slap. Red marks were forming below McCain’s buttocks where some of the whacks missed his underpants and connected with bare flesh. They certainly looked raw.

The Gaffer gripped the elasticated waist of the underpants. McCain’s closed eyes popped open as he realised what was about to happen. The class held its collective breath: no that would be an indignity too far. Surely, he wouldn’t.

The Gaffer must have had second thoughts and released his grip and continued smacking into the cotton-covered buttocks. McCain seemed visibly to relax. I saw him bend his head lower so that he could see under the chair to look at his own feet as if he was trying to be both the recipient of the spanking, but also a spectator.

The Gaffer increased the strength of his spanks and the speed, until they were raining into his cheeks rapidly like machine gun fire. McCain gasped a little: he was feeling this. Soon, though The Gaffer realised his hand was hurting more than the teenager’s buttocks (probably a lot more).

He stopped, but still held on tightly to the boy at the waist: he was going nowhere. The Gaffer looked at the classroom full of boys; this was the first time he had done this since McCain went over his knee.

The Gaffer had a plan. He spotted Fanshaw, one of the day boys sitting at the front of the class. “Do you have a plimsoll in that gym bag?” He nodded to a cloth bag resting close to the boy’s feet. Did I see a slight smile cross Fanshaw’s lips as he understood the importance of the question?

Fanshaw had been observing McCain’s predicament at close range. From his vantage point in the front row he had a perfect view of the boy’s upturned bottom and sturdy legs.

A little too eagerly, I thought, Fanshaw untied the drawstring and delved into his gym bag and brought out a white rubber-soled gym plimsoll. He had the triumphant air of a diver who had just brought up treasure from the bottom of the sea.

“Bring it up to me boy.” The Gaffer had not released his grip on McCain, but the teenager managed to turn his head enough to witness his schoolfriend leave his chair and hand over the heavy slipper that would, surely, now, be used to take off his backside.

The Gaffer held the slipper tightly at the heel end and squeezed the slipper hard. His grip was so forceful his knuckles were turning white. McCain squeezed his eyes tightly shut once again and clenched his buttocks in readiness for the onslaught. I suppose McCain hoped the clamping of his cheeks would somehow lessen the pain he was about to feel, but as every naughty boy who has ever been spanked or beaten knows as a ploy this does not work.

“Relax boy,” The Gaffer meant McCain should offer up his bum as before. Instead, McCain’s whole body seemed to stiffen as the first of a dozen quick slaps of the slipper crashed without stopping into his underpants.

McCain growled audibly. Until now he had taken his smacking in silence, occasionally gasping or wheezing. There had not been too much pain: his bottom tingled a little and the hurt such as it was had turned quickly into a warm glow that was actually quite pleasant.

The blows from the plimsoll were altogether different. The pain was instant from the very first smack. By the time the first dozen had spread across his cheeks and the top of his thighs, he was wriggling his body and kicking his legs in a desperate unsuccessful attempt to dodge the slipper.

He was breathing heavily now and his face was as scarlet as I supposed his bum must be. Then came another dozen: delivered as hard and as rapidly as the others. Half way through McCain gave up all attempts at self-control and he yelped like a little puppy.

Sweat poured off The Gaffer. He might have wished he had taken off his heavy waistcoat before ordering the boy across his knee.

The schoolmaster held McCain firmly around the middle cutting off any possibility of escape and then launched into the third dozen. Pinned as he was securely facedown over his tormentor’s knees, the boy could do nothing except try to soak up the considerable pain. He pounded his hands into the floor tiles but this did not stop The Gaffer ripping up his backside.

McCain’s humiliation was completed when tears flowed down his cheeks and his little yelps turned to huge swallows and gulps. My classmates and I looked on mesmerized. When would this end?

Only The Gaffer knew that and he slapped down another dozen across the fleshiest parts of McCain’s cheeks. From where I sat it looked like his underpants had stuck to his bum. This severe over-the-knee little boy’s spanking had made his buttocks sweat.

Now, The Gaffer was gasping almost as much as his victim; the schoolmaster was not a very fit man and could not maintain such physical effort.

The final twelve slaps whacked into the underpants and it was over. Both The Gaffer and McCain were spent.

“Up boy,” The Gaffer wheezed.

McCain did not need telling a second time. He leapt to his feet and facing away from us the eighteen-year-old’s fingers probed first the uncovered portions of bare bottom and then under the thin cotton material of the white briefs, eventually he bent down to pull up his trousers, affording me a marvellous opportunity to see his tight bottom. The thighs were red raw and McCain would have difficulty sitting comfortably for some hours to come.

The show finished quickly. The Gaffer dismissed McCain and he shot from the room and ran from the school. In silence the rest of us left the room and went our different ways.

The next morning at gym class we all admired McCain’s bruised buttocks. In the past I had seen a few bottoms after they had been caned, but nothing looked this bad. The red marks I had seen as he pulled up his trousers were now a blueish-black and the whole of his rear end from the top of the buttocks beneath the spine, across the fleshy globes and into the thighs had the texture of leather. It would take more than a week before the bruises cleared completely.

We told him he had taken the spanking well (although he had howled the classroom down and I shouldn’t be surprised if he could be heard all over the school) and we called The Gaffer “a Geordie bastard” and so on.

It was the first and last time The Gaffer demonstrated his power and authority by administering a public beating, but it wasn’t the last time he beat a sixth-form boy, as I can personally testify. But that’s another story.

Picture Credit: Unknown

This story was first uploaded in October 2015. For the full series of The Gaffer of The Academy, click here

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Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

The Old Boys

z used drawing master cane jonathon (2)

The headmaster always enjoyed the annual Old Boy’s Reunion; especially the canings he dished out.

It had become a ritual; two of the most revered Old Boys would not leave until they had each received ‘a proper’ six-of-the-best from the headmaster. When some years ago it had first been put to him that he should order them to his study, lecture them on their misdeeds and then command each to, “bend over that chair,” he thought he was having his leg pulled.

It was the school’s Bursar who raised it. He was one of the most venerable members of staff and had even been at the school when the Old Boys were pupils. The headmaster thought it was a bizarre idea, a bit kinky even, but had to respect the Bursar and hear him out.

“It goes on in schools across the land, you’ll be surprised,” the Bursar said. And the headmaster was.

“What harm can it do?”

Corporal punishment in schools had been made illegal at least fifteen years previously and the headmaster had never beaten a boy in anger. The two Old Boys were at least ten years older than he; it was absurd. One was a High Court Judge and the other a member of the House of Lords for pity’s sake.

“Headmaster, if you humour them I am sure we can get a new chemistry lab out of this,” the Bursar told him.

The headmaster laughed out loud at the suggestion; he had forgotten that each of the Old Boys were great benefactors of the school and had donated substantial amounts of money in the past and the Bursar was probably right; if he indulged them now they would give even more in the future. He agreed to go through with it.

The headmaster’s study needed surprisingly few alterations; it hadn’t changed much in the years since the Old Boys were pupils. The oak-panelled walls remained and the desk was surely as old as the hills; but the computer had to go.

The headmaster was embarrassed about having to go through this charade and wanted as few people as possible to know, but he had to rope in Mr Higgins, the school historian. He had set up a small school museum with mementos such as photographs of past headmasters and school rugby teams; but it also contained memorabilia including an old school desk, a blackboard and easel and, oh glory!, the tall thin cupboard that once stood in the corner of the headmaster’s study; including its contents: a dozen whippy rattan canes.

Higgins was alarmingly eager to supply the headmaster with everything he needed. He had indeed been an enthusiastic beater of boys’ bottoms when the law still allowed and he fervently hoped the legislators might someday reverse the decision. Perhaps, Lord Barnaby might be prevailed upon to raise the issue in Parliament.

Higgins had also kept the punishment books, where records of canings were kept. They dated back nearly a hundred years. He took great delight in reading them and recollecting the Good Old Days when boys showed their masters proper respect. And if they didn’t, they would soon be signing their names in the punishment book and nursing throbbing backsides.

Higgins’ name appeared many times in the book. On one day he had caned six boys for six different offences. One was Rodgers T. E.; he was in the sixth-form and thought he was immune to the rules. Higgins soon disabused him of that idea. He had been found in possession of a bottle of beer, despite the strict no-alcohol rules. Higgins confiscated the Watneys Pale Ale and took Rodgers to a classroom where he ordered him to bend across a school desk.

Try doing that today, Higgins thought, it’s all lawyers and childrens’ rights. But, back then, Rodgers knew he had no choice and despite being eighteen years old he went over the desk without complaint to show Higgins his arse for six top notch stingers from the master’s favourite ‘senior’ cane. He still had that cane. Rodgers was in some distress, the beating had been that severe, but he took it like a man and Higgins respected him for that. Later, alone in his digs, reminiscing the day’s events, Higgins enjoyed the boy’s beer.

The headmaster now had all that he needed, but he knew he had a problem. His two Old Boys were presumably very experienced receivers of the cane, but he had never even seen one, never mind used one. They would expect a proper thrashing, not just a tap on the bottom for old time’s sake.

Once more, Higgins had the solution. He was an expert caner and although it had been many years since he last lashed a rattan into a boy’s stretched trousers, it was surely like riding a bike; something you never forgot how to do. Let him be the one to administer the Old Boys beatings, he suggested, fervently hoping the headmaster would agree.

“No, I fear it has to be me, they seem to insist it is a headmaster’s caning.”

“Oh,” Higgins replied trying to hide his disappointment. But, he explained a “headmaster’s caning” did not only mean a caning from the headmaster; to schoolboys throughout history and all over the British Empire, a “headmaster’s caning” meant an exemplary severe thrashing; something to be dreaded.

The headmaster did not like the sound of this. What could he do?

“I can teach you how to use the cane to inflict maximum pain.”

The headmaster was grateful, but how could this be done? Would it be enough simply to whack the cane down into a cushion? Didn’t they need a real person to be on the receiving end?

Yes, Higgins agreed, they did, and he knew exactly the right person for the job, but it would be tricky to explain this to the headmaster.

“I have an acquaintance who might be willing to act as your guinea pig, so to speak,” Higgins did not want to say too much about Timothy Hutchins, a young man who hired out his backside to clients willing to pay for the pleasure of beating it black and blue.

The headmaster considered discretion in the matter to be paramount and was unwilling to bring a total stranger to the school for the headmaster to practice his caning technique. That’s how the headmaster met with Timothy one evening at Higgins’ dismal apartment in town.

It took the headmaster no more than an hour to progress from novice to expert caner. Timothy was a trooper, he did not object when asked to remove his trousers and underpants so the headmaster could see exactly where his cane stokes landed. At first, he was way off target, but soon he was landing them exactly where he wanted.

With accuracy sorted, the headmaster practiced severity. He was alarmed at the damage a single lash of the cane could inflict on flesh and began to doubt the wisdom of the whole enterprise. Could he really do this to the two Old Boys, even if they wanted him to?

“Don’t worry, headmaster. The bottom will not mark if the boys are wearing trousers.” Higgins knew he was telling a lie, but it was the only way to make sure the headmaster went through with it.

So, suitably prepared, the headmaster awaited the Old Boys’ Reunion.

The plan was surprisingly simple. The Old Boys wanted to be punished for committing real offences. What could be easier than to catch them smoking cigarettes? In the old days that would get them a caning from their housemaster, not the head. But, repeat offenders would find them on the list for a headmaster’s special caning. And, truly, both had been caned at school for smoking at least once.

Higgins had the pleasure of saying, “Barnaby, Bennett, report to the headmaster’s study. At once.”

The two boys walked in silence through the school quadrangle, into North Building and up the narrow staircase to the corridor leading to the headmaster’s study. They were reliving times in the past when they had last made this journey. Time can be deceptive. This wasn’t today, for them, this was thirty-five years ago.

They reached the study door and halted. As if in a dream each checked that their appearance was immaculate; shoes cleaned, ties straightened. Each was wearing the blue and yellow striped school blazer of their youth. Many of the Old Boys had these blazers and liked to dress up for the reunion day. Some secretly wished they could complete the outfit with their grey flannel short trousers, long grey knee socks and school cap, but these were not clothes that could easily be worn in public.

The two boys shuffled their feet, seemingly unwilling to take the next step.

“You knock.”

“No, you.”

“Oh come on,” Lord Barnaby, or now, plain Barnaby, C. T. E. knocked.

“Enter!”

They held their breath. Then Bennett took the handle, turned it and opened the door.

The headmaster sat behind his huge oak desk, resplendent in an old fashioned academic gown.

“Stand there, both of you,” he pointed to the carpet. The headmaster was used to hectoring misbehaved boys and his stern lectures were well rehearsed. He had giving tongue-lashings to many of them across the years. They did very little good. The truth was that it was impossible to punish a boy beyond giving impositions or lines. This was a boarding school and the pupils had very little liberty, so being placed in detention meant very little to them.

Since being introduced to the cane, and encouraged by Higgins, the headmaster had begun to believe that corporal punishment might be beneficial to his school. He could easily think of six or seven repeat offenders among his present boys who would profit from a sore backside. A cane laid on with force would soon buck their ideas up a bit. All it would need was one visit to the headmaster’s study for a ‘proper’ caning while bent across the desk, or over the back of the armchair. Six strokes whacked into their trouser seats; they wouldn’t be back in a hurry after that.

The headmaster eyed the two grown men standing before him: Barnaby and Bennett. He felt like laughing at the absurdity of it.

He picked up a piece of paper from the desk and read from it. “Smoking again. You have both been caned by your housemaster for this before. Is that true?”

Mumbled, “Yes, Sir,” from both of them.

“Barnaby, you have been caned twice before.”

“Sir,” said with real misery from his Lordship.

The headmaster gave his “cigarettes are bad for you,” lecture.

Only yesterday he had delivered a different lecture to two fifteen-year-old fifth-formers; their rudeness and arrogance to their masters had resulted in a visit to the headmaster. But, they had seemed unmoved by his words. He was certain they would be back on his carpet before too long. Oh, how he now wished it was them in front of him and he could whack some manners into them through their backsides.

Oddly, in his imagination, Barnaby became Probert and Bennett became Turner. No longer were they fifty-something middle-aged men, they really were two snotty fifteen-year-old schoolboys, deserving of a thrashing.

Yes, he would certainly give these boys the thrashing they so richly deserved.

Probert, you first, he thought, but said out loud, “Bennett you stand at the back of the chair. Barnaby, face the wall; hands on head.”

Meekly, both boys did as instructed.

The headmaster picked up a crook-handled rattan cane and thoughtfully bent it between his two hands.

“We shall see how you like the feel of this, Bennett,” without intention, the headmaster was speaking in an old-fashioned, upper class accent; like something out of a 1930s film: he had suddenly become Mr Chips.

“Bend over boy.” Bennett, expertly positioned himself; head down, bottom high, legs apart. As with Higgins, a caned boy never forgets how to present his backside to the satisfaction of the headmaster and his cane. Could it really be thirty-five years since his last headmaster’s caning?

Right Probert, you have been asking for this for a very long time. The headmaster raised the cane and brought it crashing down across Bennett’s trouser seat with great force. The boy gasped, but stayed in position.

“One Sir, thank you, Sir,” Bennett was reciting a ritual from days long past.

He thanked the headmaster for each of the five stingers that followed. The headmaster knew he had done a good job, his cane had left marks across the seat of the boy’s trousers and it was clear that the cuts had fallen neatly in a half-inch group across the centre of his buttocks. The headmaster would not know but the cane had bitten into the fleshy cheeks so deeply that welts had already risen.

It was with an extremely throbbing backside that Bennett rose from the chair and stood by his friend, hands on head, facing the wall. He desperately wanted to rub away the agony in his aching bottom, but the ancient schoolboy ritual did not allow this. Only when he was dismissed from the study would he be able to show that he was in any pain. Until then, he had to tough it out.

Turner, your turn, the headmaster thought, “Barnaby, your turn,” he said aloud.

The boy took up his position behind the chair.

The headmaster was enjoying himself. He swished the cane through the air a couple of times, before intoning the words all schoolboys once dreaded. “Bend over that chair.”

Barnaby was across the chair in an instant, eager to feel the lash of the cane. The headmaster eyed his target; he saw the backside of fifteen-year-old Geoffrey Turner, raised his cane high and let fly.

“One Sir, Thank you Sir,” his Lordship intoned.

He took his six-of-the-best like the man he was. The headmaster put all his effort into cracking his whippy rattan into the proffered buttocks.

“Phew!!!!” Barnaby thought, but could not say. This was the best thrashing he had ever had in his entire life; at school or after.

“Get up boy. Both of you stand in front of my desk.” The two punished schoolboys shuffled on the carpet, hands behind their backs, sneakily patting their raw buttocks with their thumbs.

The headmaster scolded them some more and dismissed them.

They sauntered from the study, as if they had no cares in the world. Once the door closed behind them, each boy jumped up and down on the spot, rubbing furiously at his buttocks.

“Crikey! What a whacking!” Bennett said.

“Quick let’s find the bogs. I’ll show you mine if you show me yours,” his friend responded.

And, that’s how it started. Every year they return to his study for six-of-the-best and each time the headmaster chooses from among the present crop, the boys he would dearly love to thrash with his cane.

Picture credit: Jonathon

This story was first uploaded in September 2015

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

 

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

Called in for a Caning

new story 2

In February 2006 Mr R. A. F. Brightlington-Pugh, a former housemaster at the Ridgeway private boarding school in the west of England, passed away peacefully in his sleep at the age of ninety-seven. Some years later, his great-great-great-great nephew found a leather-bound travelling chest containing diaries he had written during the 1930s and 1940s. This present story Called in for a Caning was inspired by the diary entry for 14th July 1939.

Other diary stories here

z used pyjamas up contrite armchair london

One supposes that Wilkins thought it was a spiffing good idea at the time. It must have seemed like a jolly good jape. He must have expected the other fellows in the sixth-form to think of him as a hero. I expect he changed his mind after I called him in for a caning.

Can there ever have been another schoolboy in all the land in all of history who visited his housemaster’s study on the very last evening of his school career for a farewell six of the best? That was Wilkins. Tomorrow he and his fellow senior boys will for the last time take the up train away from Ridgeway never to return. Their days as schoolboys ended forever.

Wilkins is a darned fool and he deserved everything he received.

As far as I can tell it started three days ago when Wilkins, who considers himself both an artist and a clown, chose to combine both attributes. He drew a caricature of a schoolmaster resplendent in academic cap and gown that had a very passable likeness to myself. The figure was brandishing a crook-handled cane with (I must relate) a rather demented expression on his face. If that had been the be all and end all of the matter I might have let it rest. I am not a man lacking humour. I could have passed the drawing off as a piece of end of term ragging. One is allowed to let one’s hair down (as I believe the current vulgarism has it) just before the hols.

Alas, there was more to the drawing than simply an over-excited schoolmaster. For, included in the picture was another figure. This one – a boy, clearly a sixth-former, and I believe intended to be a likeness of Dewhurst one of the top scholars in his set ­– was shown bending across the back of a rather worn armchair. It was clearly intended to represent a scene in my study. There can hardly be a boy in my House who has not had close contact with that particular piece of furniture at some time. Indeed, one or two of the senior boys have more than a passing acquaintance with that chair.

One might have left it there. Visits to the housemaster’s study for a beating are part of a schoolboy’s life. I know such experiences stay with many ‘old boys’ long after they have departed school and made their way in the world. Indeed, on Founder’s Day when many of them return to Ridgeway I have on occasion been approached with the request to administer to them six-of-the-best for old time’s sake.

But I digress. It is true that Wilkins’s caricature showed myself beating a boy. But that alone was not the reason why I summoned the boy to my study. His depiction went a little further. For in Wilkin’s imagination Dewhurst was bent across the chair his trousers at his ankles and underwear at the knees and I was flogging his bared buttocks with my cane. The result of my endeavour was clearly visible across the cheeks of the submissive boy.

And the expression on my face was not meant to be ambiguous: I was enjoying myself thoroughly.

I have no idea if Wilkins expected to get away with this outrage. I understand the drawing circulated freely among the sixth-form boys and I have no doubt to other forms beyond. It would be only a matter of time before the identity of the artist became widely known. It is possible that Wilkins intended to be found out; why would such a talented artist hide his light under a bushel? There is no glory in anonymity.

It was my junior colleague Mr Mainwaring who drew my attention to the outrage. He had intercepted the caricature’s circulation among the cricket First XI. It was then but a matter of time before the full story emerged. It was entirely correct of Mainwaring to report the matter to myself, but did I detect a certain curling of his lip as he handed it to me? I have seen that look of insolence with the boys many times. Is Mainwaring himself in need of a trip across my armchair?

Wilkins was the culprit. He knew that I knew, but I resolved to keep my powder dry. I would not immediately call him in for a caning. Let him wait; he could stew a while. He might even start to believe that no retribution was coming. Poor fool.

I am not generally a vindictive man. Generally when a boy is discovered misbehaving I deal with the matter promptly. “Bend over that chair. Head low, bottom high, feet apart.” Then swipe, swipe, swipe – six stingers across the stretched backside. Then, “Stand up boy. Now get out.” It is over in a trice. Crime committed; punishment accepted and we both get on with our lives.

Not so with Wilkins. There were still two days to go before his final night at Ridgeway. I would bide my time. At last as the boys were changing into pyjamas minutes before lights out, I sent an emissary to the senior boys’ dorm. “Wilkins attend Mr Brightlington-Pugh’s study.” Naturally, I was not present when the message was delivered, but I expect it was received with dismay. So, it was not to be, Wilkins had not been excused. “Hard luck, Wilkey,” his fellows would have commiserated with him, while quietly relishing that one of their own was about to receive a severe bowing. Boys can be cruel creatures.

“Attend at once,” the message was clear, “In your pyjamas.”

It was an early summer evening and most of the boys’ clothes were already packed away in trunks ahead of tomorrow’s journeys home. Wilkin had no dressing gown so appeared at my door dressed only in his regulation grey-and-white-striped pyjamas and house shoes. His rat-a-tat knock was confident, defiant even. He knew why he had been called in, there was no doubt in his mind that this was not a social visit. I had not asked him to drop by so that I could bid him farewell and offer my felicitations for a successful future.

“Enter!” I growled. The door sprung open and Wilkins appeared. He is a tall athletically built eighteen-year-old boy, who stands an inch or so taller than myself. Like his fellows, his hair is cut very short. His face is a little scarred by spots and there are signs around his upper lip that he might soon need to start shaving. Despite these outward appearances that he is a man he is decidedly nothing of the thing. He is a boy. Legally he becomes a man when he attains twenty-one and even then I have my doubts that many boys are truly ready for manhood even at that age.

Here at Ridgewood we insist that all pupils wear smart short trousers as part of their school uniform until they attain the age of sixteen and enter the sixth-form. Personally, I should be very content if they continued to wear short trousers until the day they left school in their nineteenth year. A Ridgeway boy is instantly recognisable in the locale. In additional to the dark-grey short trousers that reach to an inch above the knee, he wears a bright red woollen blazer with white edging; a red-and-white-hooped cap and grey knee socks with red tops.

I beckoned Wilkins into the study. I waved the offending caricature at him, rather as Mr Chamberlain did with his famous piece of paper declaring peace in our time. I had no message of peace for Wilkins; far from it. I accused him of being its architect and he immediately confessed his crime. I will say this for a Ridgeway boy, he is an honourable chap. It is undoubtedly true that he will try to break each and every rule we set for him and many times they escape undetected. However, if they are caught, they make no complaint and accept their punishment.

I had rehearsed a little something to express my displeasure with the boy’s insolence.  Disrespect; Impudence; Impertinence; were some of the words I threw at him. I acknowledge I had consulted a thesaurus earlier in the day. I make my own confession now; I have when occasion dictates a little of the ham actor in me.

Wilkins took it all on the chin. He stood on the worn rug feet slightly apart, hands behind his back, his head a little bowed and brow furrowed. His temples shone with perspiration. I jawed him for a while and then the case for the prosecution completed, I allowed him to speak in defence. He had nothing to say in mitigation and in a rather half-hearted way, he said he was sorry.

“Bah!” I ejaculated. “Sorry! Yes, Wilkins. Sorry! You soon shall be.” I hauled myself from my chair and conscious that the boy’s eyes were following me nervously I ambled across my study towards a hat stand in the corner. I always have two crook-handled canes dangling from it, so that I am constantly ready for action as it were. Earlier, I had hung my special Malacca cane there. This cane although no longer or thicker than my others is a rod of great density. It will pack a punch like no other. To be beaten with this is an awesome experience, even for the most battle-hardened senior boy such as Wilkins.

I reached up and took down the Malacca. I tuned to face Wilkins, his hazel eyes sparkled, his face paled. I flexed the cane between my hands thereby demonstrating its extreme flexibility. Then I swished it through empty air. It made a terrific whoosh! as it flew. This little pantomime served no practical purpose, I was already acutely aware of the rod’s properties. As I say, I do have a bit of the ham actor about me.

I swished the cane once more and pointed it at one of the two armchairs in my study. This one was the older of the two, the upholstery was worn across the back and so was the cushion; generations of schoolboys had leaned over that chair and gripped the seat for all they were worth. Now it was the turn of Wilkins to uphold that tradition.

The eighteen-year-old was no stranger to my study, nor my rituals. Without further instruction, he took the four paces necessary to reach the chair, I watched him take a deep breath, then he rubbed the palms of his hands together before leaning forward. He placed his head low and his bottom high then he spread his feet thereby offering his pyjama-covered backside at a perfect angle to receive the attention of my cane. I had to admire his fortitude. He was ready to accept just punishment. I took a moment to admire the tableau. Wilkins is a star of both our rugby and cricket teams, he is quite the athlete. His body is firm and his limbs are loose. In this position, his firm buttocks stretched against the cotton pyjama bottoms seemingly lifting and separating each cheek. The muscles in his thighs emphasised the roundness of his bottom. He stared down at the seat cushion, breathing evenly, waiting patiently for me to do my duty.

I fingered the cane and once more flexed it into a bow. I was ready to go. I took up a position about three feet to his left (a cane’s length) and gently tapped the Malacca across the very centre of his bottom, a half inch or so below the highest point of his mounds. I tapped some more, perfecting my aim. I was about to raise the cane to then bring it swiping down with maximum force when I stopped myself short. An idea had taken me.

“Stand up Wilkins!” I could see the look of astonishment in the boy’s still sparkling eyes. He pulled himself to his feet, his puzzlement evident on all his features. I swiped the cane through the air. I confess that my heart was thumping and my throat was more than a little dry. I croaked at Wilkins, “I think the seriousness of your offence is such that an exemplary punishment is called for.” I saw the boy’s face fall. I do believe he was one step ahead of me and had guessed my intention.

“Lower your pyjama bottoms Wilkins and step out of them.” I swear the sound of his gulp could be heard in the quadrangle outside of my study. His mind raced. I believe I could read some of what he was thinking. A bare-bottomed thrashing! On his final evening at school. For a second he contemplated a refusal. If he had said No! what would I have then done? He is undoubtedly bigger and stronger than I. He would win a brawl with ease. I would be left humiliated; my only recourse would be to ask the headmaster to expel him. What a humiliation that would be (for me)! Wilkins is due to leave Ridgeway tomorrow, he has already taken his examinations, expulsion would have no consequences for him.

I swiped the cane down hard across the apex of the chair. “Pyjama bottoms down. Step out of them. Bend over!” I made the command with more confidence that I actually felt. Wilkins bit down into his bottom lip, then not looking at me, he fumbled with the drawstring of his pyjamas. It took longer than one might expect for him to complete the task. The pyjamas tumbled to his feet and without hesitation he stepped out of them. He turned and dived across the back of the chair with alacrity. He wriggled into position, head low, bottom high, feet apart. I took three deep breathes. I was back in control.

Writing this diary less than an hour later I can reflect almost soberly (well, I have had a glass of whisky) that all is well with the world order. Wilkins, a schoolboy, understands his place. That is to obey his superiors (his “betters” as the lower classes like to say) without question.

Wilkins presented his bared bottom to me for punishment. Slowly and methodically I placed six cuts across the quivering meat. I started in the very centre of his cheeks across the highest peaks, then I struck slightly below and then slightly above that first marker. By the time I was finished he had six deep stripes running in parallel across his posterior in a group about two inches wide. If I may say so myself it was an expertly administered thrashing. Of course, Wilkins played his part; his stoicism and ability to stay in position, bottom raised even under such terrible fire, made my task that much easier.

With the six-of-the-best duly delivered, I ordered him to stand, he quickly retrieved his pyjama bottoms, put them on and tied himself up. I believe I detected a hint of admiration behind his by now very watery hazel eyes. I offered him my hand to shake. I think he deserved that. He had taken his beating like a man. I rather think I shall miss Wilkins.

I will keep his caricature with my other treasured memories of Ridgeway.

 

Picture credit: CP Services London

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Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

 

A Fragment of a Memory

new story 2

Fortescue unscrewed the cap of a new whisky bottle. More of the amber liquid splashed onto the table as into the glass. He raised it and gulped. It had been years since he had actually tasted the stuff. Somewhere in the room a wireless played inane disc jockey chatter.

He leaned against the window and peered out, seeing nothing. Dark clouds blocked the sun. Another dull, grey day. He drained the glass, sucked in breath and hacked phlegm into his throat. He reached for the bottle and rattled another drink.

Three paces away was his chair. If he concentrated very hard, he could make the distance. One pigeon step at a time. Concentrate man.  It wasn’t much of a chair. Not like the sumptuous leather one he once had his study. This was cheap wood, with a foam cushion. It made his back hurt.

Fortescue slumped. His chest hurt. He leaned forward trying to get his head between his knees. Damn! More whisky spilled.

He slumped back into the chair, head flopping. Soon he would be asleep.

A door opened and closed nearby. He could just make out excited voices of young men. His head dropped onto his chest.

It is a summer’s afternoon. About four o’clock. School has ended for the day. Most of the boys have returned to their homes. Some are at cricket practice. Fortescue can hear their merry voices drifting on the breeze. One young man is not so merry. Chippindale stands in trepidation, hands on head, facing the wood-panelled wall. The study is stuffy, smelling of old man’s sweat and cigarette smoke.

Fortescue sits behind his huge walnut desk. He leans back in his chair and places his hands behind his head. He stretches. He stares intently at the prefect. His pale-grey trousers fit snugly, displaying two chunky buttock cheeks: lifted and separated. The muscles in his back are taut. His gleaming-white cotton shirt clings to the contours of his torso. Even across the length of the study Fortescue can see the damp patch at his shoulder blades.

Fortescue hauls himself to his feet. Slowly, for he is in no hurry and wishes to savour every moment. He crosses the study to the tall, thin cabinet. His hands shake slightly as he tugs open the door. The array of canes is impressive. He doesn’t have to count them, he knows exactly the extent of his arsenal. There are seven assorted rods, some with the traditional crook-handle; most made of rattan and two are dragon canes. The dragons are ideal for thrashing older boys; but today Fortescue has another idea.

The Malacca cane. It is no bigger or thicker than any of the other canes; but it is denser. This Malacca has notches every three inches or so along its length. These cut into the flesh and leave severe bruises and welts; even when applied to a boy’s bottom covered with trousers and underpants. When applied “trousers down,” even on the underpants, it rips at the meat of the buttocks. A boy carries the marks of such a thrashing for at least a couple of weeks and sitting down is a painful business for many days following. As Chippindale is about to discover.

Fortescue flexes the rod between his hands. Perfect. Dense, but whippy. He relishes the sound it makes as he swipes it through empty air. He turns towards the prefect. “Turn. Stand there.” He points the cane at a rather worn rug in front of his desk. He swipes the cane once more, studying Chippindale’s clear, open face, now clouded with concern.

The prefect shuffles into the required position. Fortescue stands, cane tucked under his arm. “Trousers down,” he barks. Without hesitation Chippindale reaches for his belt buckle. Fortescue allows himself a smile. It is all right, he tells himself, the boy cannot see you. It would not do to show his pleasure.

The belt now undone, Chippindale starts on the trousers. He has some trouble with the fly buttons. Fortescue watches intently as the front of the eighteen-year-old’s trousers open, revealing the white briefs beneath. “Down boy. All the way.” It is an unnecessary command. Chippindale is well trained. He knows the headmaster must be obeyed: without question.

The pale-grey trousers slip down Chippindale’s thighs but snag at his knees. He opens his legs a little and they continue their journey south and rest in a puddle at his feet. “Bend over. Touch your toes.” Another barked order.

Chippindale has been here before. He knows toes means toes. Right down. There is to be no resting hands on knees or gripping shins or ankles. He sucks in a lung-full of air and stretches forward. The tips of his fingers brush the toecaps of his shoes. Fortescue’s tongue darts in and out of his mouth, rather like a lizard. The prefect’s knees are slightly bent which thrusts his buttocks out, making his smooth cotton white underpants hug him.

z used school white pants touch toes sting (1)

Fortescue flexes his cane once more, seduced by it springiness and power. He looks at the prefect now submissive before him, the muscles on Chippindale’s legs are tense, the buttocks firm and inviting, the back arched. Fortescue advances, now eager to get on with the job. He stands beside the boy, grips the tail of his shirt and pulls it away from the target area, exposing an area of bare, hairless back. He cannot help himself; gently he caresses the proffered buttocks, running his right palm across each mound, discovering that a single cheek fits the size of his hand perfectly.

Fortescue positions himself a pace or two to Chippindale’s left; a cane’s length. He takes his aim, tapping the tip of the dense Malacca cane in the centre of the far buttock. He can scarcely disguise his pleasure when Chippindale’s body tenses and his buttocks clench in anticipation of the pain about to be unleashed.

Any moment now.

Swish! The cane swipes through the air and lands with a resounding Thwack! across the centre of Chippindale’s bum. A thick line forms across the tight, thin cotton pants. A perfect shot. Chippindale hisses, sounding like a steam engine settling down. It is a reflex action, he can’t help it. It’s a natural reaction, his body has to do something to cope with the pain.

Fortescue waits. In his head he is counting to twenty, giving enough time for the prefect’s body to register the stroke, for the burning sensation to travel across the stretched buttocks. Then, just as the agony is easing to mere pain – Swipe! The second cut lands; again dead centre of the backside, but this time a little lower. Now, Chippindale has a line of fire about an inch wide across his stretched flesh.

The headmaster is an expert with the cane. The boys say his beatings are awesome. They should be too – Fortescue gets plenty of practice. Chippindale’s hair is soaked with sweat; his face is as scarlet as his buttocks must be.

The cane flies and lands higher this time. Three perfectly parallel lines. The boy will have something to show his pals later. Fortescue takes pride in his own prowess.  Chippindale wriggles his hips left and right. His fingers leave the toecaps of his shoes. He nearly jumps to his feet, but stops himself just in time. He doesn’t want extra strokes.

“Keep still boy!” Fortescue’s voice echoes around the study. He is incapable of speaking in a normal tone of voice.

The headmaster pauses. He lets Chippindale settle, then takes careful aim. The fourth goes high. Chippindale rewards this with his first clear yelp. The prefect breathes hard, drawing gulps of air into his lungs. Fortescue takes a step back, the better to see the four distinct welts that are throbbing beneath Chippindale’s skin-tight underpants. A job well done, the headmaster congratulates himself.

He puts swipe number five lower, into the fleshiest part of Chippindale’s buttocks. Where there is most padding. The cane sinks deep into the meat before springing back, leaving another clearly-defined weal. Chippindale stifles a yell, Fortescue hacks out a dry cough.

The final stroke. Chippindale braces himself, Fortescue smiles broadly. All the boys at the school know about a headmaster’s caning and that last stroke. He adjusts his position, places the cane at a diagonal across both cheeks so it goes bottom left to top right. He taps it so Chippindale has no doubts about his intention. Fortescue likes the way the prefect’s body tenses, his shoulders heave. Here goes, he thinks to himself as he raises the cane high and with the effort a golfer might give when teeing off, he lets fly.

Whop! The cane goes at the speed of sound before crashing into Chippindale’s bum. It falls across the previous cuts and sets each one of them on fire again. Chippindale grips his ankles, determined not to show the intense pain. He wants to jump up and dance around clutching at the scorching flesh. But, he doesn’t. It takes a super-human effort to stay down, bent over, fingertips on toes. He is a beaten boy, he wants to scream and holler but he won’t. He wouldn’t give the tyrant headmaster the satisfaction.

Fortescue knows this. Of course, he is aware of the schoolboy code of honour. He would never tell the boy but he is rather impressed with his fortitude. He loves nothing more than a senior boy who can take a proper thrashing. Fortescue catches his breath and slowly paces the study and opens the door to his cupboard. He replaces the cane and turns to look at Chippindale still bent double, touching his toes. Submissively. A master and his pupil.

The headmaster returns to his desk, opens a drawer and finds the book he is looking for. He writes the details of the beating, omitting the fact it was administered trousers down.

“You may stand Chippindale.”

Hot, sweaty and very sore, the prefect straightens. Fortescue knows he is desperate to rub away at his backside. He is in no hurry. Let him suffer, he thinks. “Sign.” The headmaster slides the punishment book across the desk. Chippindale hesitates, he has no pen.

“Bah!” Fortescue has no patience, he delves back into the desk drawer, rummages around and finds a pen. He rolls it across the desk.

Chippindale signs his name.

“You are dismissed. Send in the next boy.”

Fortescue’s chin slips, he slumps from the chair, catching himself just in time before he tumbles to the floor. He tries to shake the dullness from his head and stumbles towards the bottle. From somewhere he hears a voice faking jollity, “And, now for the ten o’clock news.”

 

Picture credit: Sting Pictures

This was a story abut The Tyrant Headmaster, for more click here

 

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

 

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

What a Disappointment . . .

z used longs touch toes school sting

No sixth-former had ever been caned at my school, so I made history that day.

Actually, hardly anyone had been caned in living memory – it was a “progressive” school and I had thought corporal punishment had been abolished a long time ago.

But, as I was to find out it had only fallen into disuse and that day it was making a comeback.

And, I welcomed its return, thank you very much, Sir.

I was eighteen years old and for a long as I could remember I had had a thing about corporal punishment. I used to fantasize about what it would be like to go over someone’s knee for the slipper or be sent to the headmaster’s study for six-of-the-best with the cane.

And, now my fantasy was to come true: or so I hoped.

It was all rather unexpected. I was in no way a bad lad, a rebellious teen, or a troublemaker. In fact I was such a goody-goody I was a prefect at the school and tipped to go on to university.

I had fallen foul of one of the school’s most fearsome battle-axes: Miss Lowenstein. She really was an old crone. One of the ugliest women you’d ever be likely to meet, with buck teeth and a gammy leg, courtesy of a childhood bout of polio.

She was, of course, a spinster and we boys all thought she was sex starved (as if we weren’t). And, she was a tough disciplinarian. She called herself a “martinet” and woe betides anyone who did not call her “ma’am”. No way were we allowed to call her “miss”, like we did all the other women teachers.

She had a mean streak and that’s how it was that I was about to break the record and take a caning.

We had a school magazine, it wasn’t a posh one, professionally published, but just something we cobbled together on an old Roneo printer. It was mostly short stories and poems (well doggerel verse really). It was my prowess as a poet that got me in trouble. I’d penned a verse that did not name her, but everyone knew who I meant. Somewhere in there it called her a “crow” and that she did not like.

So, before I knew it she was onto Mr Henderson, the head of Upper School, whining on that something must be done. And, the only “something” that would satisfy the bat was me bent over getting a sore arse.

When I realised I was for it I was not the least worried. I had dreamt about this for so long. I was fascinated by school canings and read lots of stories and comics that involved schoolboys getting their backsides tanned.

My favourite stories took place in public schools which were a world away from the inner city comprehensive I attended. In England “public” schools are expensive private schools, often where pupils boarded. What they all had in common was the thwack of the cane across the seat of the trousers that rewarded boys who misbehaved.

At home I used to pretend I was one of the boys sent for “six on the bags” as the school stories had it. Often I would dress up in my school uniform and pose in front of the full-length mirror in the passageway of our council flat. I would bend over touching my toes admiring the reflection of my bum in the mirror.

I never did anything about my spanking fantasy. I was young and we were all very naïve in those days. We didn’t have Internet then, so I wasn’t to know that there were plenty of people out there who shared my interest. Let’s face it there would have been plenty of people ready to cane an eighteen-year-old schoolboy’s backside raw (and much else besides) if they knew he was ready and willing.

I had one friend who looking back I think might have shared my interest. We were too young to express to each other our true feelings and the closest we got to doing anything was one day, while playing in his house, we found some sticks and had a go at sword-fighting. I can’t remember how it happened, but we moved on from medieval knights or whatever to naughty boys.

To this day, I remember he was willing to get a whacking from me. He bent over the back of the couch. We were both children so he couldn’t quite stretch all the way over. But, I do remember his chubby buttocks stretching against his corduroy trousers. He made a perfect target and if I hadn’t been so shy, I would have (no, should have) swished the stick into his arse.

But I chickened out. Why? I don’t know. But even now nearly fifty years after the event I still have pangs of regret.

So, I wasn’t about to give up the chance of a proper headmaster’s caning from Mr Henderson.

I went to a pretty ordinary school and we had no airs and graces: my school uniform was a very standard black blazer with grey trousers.

My uniform was ordinary and if truth be told I was pretty ordinary too: about five-foot-seven, a little over eight-stone in weight, and properly proportioned, not like the obese teenagers you see today.

At the appointed time I went to the concrete and glass Admin Block and knocked on the door of Mr Henderson’s office. My heart was thumping as if I had run a mile in a minute to be there. Something exciting was happening here and I couldn’t easily describe it, but I hoped that after this afternoon I wouldn’t quite be the same again.

I entered on Mr Henderson’s command. I was surprised to find Miss Lowenstein waiting there: not only was she determined to make sure I got my beating; she was going to personally witness it.

Mr Henderson had a modern office and it was very small. With all the filing cabinets you couldn’t swing a cat (or hardly a cane) in it. He probably looked like a typical comprehensive schoolteacher: wearing a rather scruffy shirt and plain tie with beige trousers that had seen better days since he bought them at a cheap chain store many years ago.

There wasn’t much room with all three of us present. I stood as best I could in front of Mr H’s Formica-covered desk. It was a mess, piled high with files and school notebooks. Miss Lowenstein moved out of my eyesight, probably all the better to get a view of what was to happen next.

Mr Henderson didn’t quite know what to say. He called me “Walton,” which isn’t quite my name. He mumbled something about how awful I had been. He actually said my behaviour was “ugly” and I suppressed a laugh at that, knowing that word perfectly described Miss Lowenstein.

I said something nondescript in return and then he told me matter-of-factly that he was going to cane me.

He moved to a filing cabinet. I hadn’t noticed before, but on top of it lay a short stick. This was no crook-handled ashplant cane beloved of public school masters; this was a  piece of bamboo, a little over two feet long and so rigid it would be impossible to bend it, or get much of a swish out of it.

Then he said the wonderful words I had dreamt of hearing for so long, “Bend over, Walton.”

There wasn’t anything to bend over, a desk or a chair, so heart thumping madly I just bent down. He hadn’t given the time-honoured command “touch your toes,” so I leaned forward a bit and keeping my legs straight I put my hands on my knees. That was enough. I was stooped there showing sufficient backside to serve the purpose.

I waited staring down at the worn carpet for the first stroke to land, remembering all those times I had bent touching my toes in front of the mirror. It didn’t matter how much it hurt I would shut my teeth and stick it, just like the boys in the stories I loved so much.

There was no swish as the cane landed on my bum, just a dull thud. I felt it, but there was no searing pain. The second and third stoke landed. What a disappointment. I hardly felt a thing. Mr Henderson’s heart was not in this. I felt terribly let down.

I got six strokes, but there’s no way anyone could have mistaken them for “six-of-the best.” I remained bent over after the last one landed. I knew the etiquette was you stayed in position until you were given permission to stand up. In the stories if a boy stood up before being allowed he got extra strokes. I wouldn’t have minded some more, but I doubt Mr Henderson would have obliged.

Eventually, rather absent-mindedly Mr Henderson said I should get up. I did as I was told. Did my face show my disappointment? I can’t be sure, but I could see Miss Lowenstein had a face like thunder. She was not impressed. Had she wanted to see me jumping about from foot to foot clutching my bum in agony and choking in fits of sobs?

Maybe she did. I’m sure that’s what I wanted too.

Mr Henderson was still holding the cane, not sure what to do with it, or how to dismiss me from his office. I don’t suppose he had much experience caning schoolboys since corporal punishment had all but been abolished at the school.

Eventually he summoned up enough wit to send me on my way.

I was in no real pain. In the stories I would have been rubbing my backside furiously as I rushed back to my study. I did have a surreptitious feel of the seat of my trousers, just a quick rub with my thumb, but there was no sensation there.

I knew I couldn’t go to the lavs to inspect the damage (if there was any) because they would be full of smokers and there’d be no privacy.

Instead, I went straight home. Thirty minutes later I was lying on my bed, my trousers and pants on the floor beside me. I was sorely disappointed. I couldn’t find a trace of the cane’s marks. It was as if it hadn’t happened.  There were no welts or bruises that would last for days and no chance that I would have difficulty in sitting down at tea time or have to sleep on my stomach tonight.

I leaned over and took an ancient storybook and a handful of tissues from the bedside table. They certainly knew how to deal with misbehaving seniors at St Tom’s School.

Dr Tulke rose from his writing-table. To Wooton’s surprise, he picked up a cane. Wooton could not see what the cane was wanted for.
He was, however, soon to discover.
“Senior boys,” said the Head, “are not usually caned at St, Tom’s, but there are exceptional cases that can be dealt with in no other way. Bend over that desk, Wooton!”
“Eh?”
“Bend over that desk!”
Wooton – bewildered and dismayed – bent over the desk.
Swipe! Swipe, Swipe, Swipe, Swipe, Swipe!

It was not merely “six.”  It was as thorough a licking as Dr Tulke had ever administered; such a licking as Wooton had seldom or never experienced before.
It seemed like a horrid dream to Wooton of the Sixth. But it was no dream; it was painful reality. Very painful! The head was a venerable gentleman, but he seemed to have a lot of beef in his right arm. He put it all into that whacking.
Wooton fairly squirmed.
“Now,” said the head, breathing hard, “you may go, Wooton! Not another word, or I shall cane you again! Go!”

Wooton almost tottered from the study. He left with pale face and compressed lips. His eyes were burning like hot coals.

Picture credit: Sting Pictures

This story was first uploaded in August 2015

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

Murph in the Headmaster’s Study

z used drawing cane picture quelch Mag no 6

A St Francis Independent Grammar School story. Click here for the full series.

 

Murph was bent over the desk, awaiting his fate. He had been told to grip the far edge of the desk, so he was stretched across it. His school blazer, shirt and white vest had ridden up his back. His grey school trousers and white Y-fronts were down at his ankles.

Getting into position meant bending over and presenting his bared backside for a caning even though he was a grown-up young man of eighteen.

In front of him, Dr Henderson-Smith, the headmaster, was rummaging through his punishment cabinet intent on finding just the right stick to take the bully’s arse off.

Eventually he took cold of the Malacca, a fearsome specimen. It was no longer or thicker than the rattans among his vast collection; but it was denser. And every three or four inches along its length were notches which, the headmaster knew from the rod’s satisfactory use in the past would raise serious wounds on a boy’s buttocks. A deep red welt would raise immediately the Malacca connected with flesh, then within minutes deep purple bruises would cover the entire area of the globes. The marks would stay for days, more than a week sometimes and the boy on the receiving end of such a thrashing would find it painful to sit for many hours. Some areas of the buttocks would remain tender to the touch for days.

Yes, Dr Henderson-Smith was convinced this was the cane to deal with young Murphy.

Mick Murphy, naturally known across the school as ‘Murph’, was from the town’s growing Irish stock. He was typical of the breed; his head was oblong shaped and his face looked like a potato. His body was built like a navvy’s and covered in hair. The good doctor had never before seen such hairy buttocks on a teenager.

Murph shuddered in anticipation of the ordeal to come as the headmaster moved into position behind him, and swished the cane menacingly through the air, adding considerably to the young man’s trepidation.

Dr Henderson-Smith had no sympathy with the boy now prone across his leather-topped desk. He was a bully and an extortionist. For many months the lout had been terrorising junior boys and taking their lunch money. Murphy’s was a simple plan. At St Francis Independent Grammar School the prefects were not allowed to punish the younger boys outright; instead they distributed punishment slips for breaches of good behaviour. If a boy collected three such slips it meant an automatic caning from his housemaster.

Murphy dished out the slips as if they were confetti; but he would ‘let a boy off’ if he coughed up his lunch money; which they always would do. The cash kept Murphy in smokes and paid for the ‘girlie’ magazines that were easily available from certain newsagents in town.

It went on for months: perhaps, the only question to ask is why he did not get caught sooner. It was only by chance that Mr Tooke, a junior master, looking through the chemistry lab window saw the brute attack the tiny eleven-year-old boy. Albright rolled in a ball on the ground to protect himself from the flailing legs of his attacker.

That was how Murphy found himself knocking on the sturdy oak door of the headmaster’s study.

‘Enter!’

Murph gulped and entered the study closing the door behind him, the desk in front of him was clear. The headmaster was a bit of a drama queen. Calmly, he told Murph that his behaviour was unacceptable.

“You’re going to be sound-er-ly th-rashed, my boy, and that means a prop-er can-ing,” he rolled every syllable around his tongue, fondly believing this would drive terror into any misbehaving teenager’s heart.

“Move over to my desk, drop your trousers and underpants and spread yourself across it, gripping the sides. This will hurt and is intended to.”

Murph had expected this. Although he had never been sent to the headmaster’s study before, he had heard tales from other boys who had. His friend Mitchell had been caned last week; he said it hurt something awful. Felt like a red hot poker against his skin.

In a trance, Murph unbuckled his belt, unfastened his trousers, pulled the zip and let them slide off his hips and down his thighs. As he did as he was told he dreaded what was to come next.

“Underpants too, boy!” It was a sharp command. The headmaster was not about to have his time wasted by this sixth-former.

Still Murph hesitated; he really did not want to expose his bare flesh to the headmaster.

“Please don’t make me come over there and take them down for you!” Dr Henderson-Smith would have too. He found that many of his pupils were far from stoical when the time came for a caning. In generations past it was a matter of honour for a schoolboy to present himself gallantly for a beating, but many modern boys lacked the courage to do this.

With shaking hands and scarlet face, Murph stuck his thumbs under the waistband of his underpants and dragged them to his knees, displaying his genitals. Quickly, he cupped them in his hands to hide them from the headmaster’s view.

“Stupid boy! I am not the least bit interested in your private parts,” the headmaster thought, but did not say aloud. It was the another part of the boy’s anatomy that interested the good doctor.

He tapped the wooden desk with his finger. “Bend over.”

Murph bent right over it, clutching the far edge and offering his bottom most submissively for what was to be a thrashing of a lifetime.

There was no ceremony with the headmaster. He had a job to do, no a duty, to perform and he got on with it.

The boy felt the cane rest on his backside and then it was gone. The next thing he felt was the cane land on his bare backside and an intense line of fire erupted across his buttocks, This was Murph’s first bare-bottomed caning and the eighteen-year-old screamed. He had never felt anything quite like it. He was hot all over, but his bottom was definitely hotter still and rapidly overheating.

It might have been fairer not to give such a vicious first stroke, but the headmaster was in no mood to show any leniency, and had delivered it with every ounce of effort at his disposal

After a slight pause, a second stroke landed a little below where the first had marked him. Murph was astonished by the severity and intensity of the stripe. He felt flushed and humiliated to be fully dressed on his top half, but naked from the waist down.  Cold perspiration ran down his back.

“Please Sir!” Murph wailed. “Please Sir, I’m sorry!”

“Silence boy!” thundered the headmaster and cracked the cane down again. Strokes three onwards landed on the bare flesh, hurting, if possible, even more than the first one. By the fourth stroke, snot and tears were cascading down his huge face. The headmaster did not decrease his punishment one bit and was well satisfied with the boy sobbing on the desk in front of him.

The sixth stroke slashing across the base of Murph’s bottom, where it joins the thighs, was the final straw, causing him to yell out and sob loudly. His legs danced and thrashed about. He had never been in such pain, nor imagined that such pain was possible to survive.

With Murph still across the desk, the headmaster gave him a final warning about his behaviour before giving him permission to get dressed. As the teenager was dressing Dr Henderson-Smith replaced the cane in the cabinet and sat down before opening the punishment book. He wrote Murph’s name, the nature of the offence and details of the punishment inflicted. He noted with some satisfaction that this was the fifteenth entry in the book that month and it was still only the second week.

When instructed by the headmaster, Murph slowly pushed himself back on his elbows as he got unsteadily up. His legs felt weak and he had to lean on the desk for a couple of moments before he got his balance.

Murph slowly pulled his underwear back up over his buttocks, unable to resist gently probing the damage with his fingers as he did so. He could feel the painful ridges that would be visible for quite some time to come. Finally he got his school trousers up and fastened, then stood, hands clenched at his side, in front of the headmaster, his hands gently massaging his throbbing backside and his eyes wet with tears. He signed his name in the punishment book with the lecture from the headmaster on his future behaviour and a warning that it would be worse if he ever came before him again on a similar offence, ringing in his ears.

Murph was dismissed and slowly he limped from the study his hands rubbing his buttocks and his eyes still moist with tears.

Picture credit: The Magnet

This story was first uploaded in August 2015.

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

 

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com

The Poker School

new story 2

In February 2006 Mr R. A. F. Brightlington-Pugh, a former housemaster at the Ridgeway private boarding school in the west of England, passed away peacefully in his sleep at the age of ninety-seven. Some years later, his great-great-great-great nephew found a leather-bound travelling chest containing diaries he had written during the 1930s and 1940s. This present story The Poker Game was inspired by the diary entry for 3rd February 1938.

z used cane pyjamas up armchair school london (2)

All schoolboys like to think that they are adults and should be treated accordingly. It is the schoolmaster’s duty to disabuse them of this notion and be a constant reminder that they are indeed children who must subordinate themselves to the will of their elders.

It was for this reason that Ridgeway insisted that all its pupils wore smart short trousers as part of their school uniform until they attained the age of sixteen and entered the sixth-form. Personally, I should be very content if they continued to wear short trousers until the day they left school in their nineteenth year.

A Ridgeway boy is instantly recognisable in the locale. In additional to the dark-grey short trousers that reach to an inch above the knee, he wears a bright red woollen blazer with white edging; a red-and-white-hooped cap and grey knee socks with red tops.

Despite, all our attempts to remind the boys they are but children some continue to defy us. Thus it was that this evening I chanced upon the sixth-form poker game.

I am not in the habit of patrolling the house after lights out. There is a prefect body whose 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.

This evening I was feeling particularly irritable. There was nothing to listen to on the wireless save for Bandwagon, a humorous programme (or so says my copy of the Radio Times). I could bear Arthur Askey and Stinker Murdoch no longer, so decided on a tour of the house.

All was quiet, as indeed it should be at this hour. I did not venture inside the dormitories; I trust my prefects to do their jobs properly. I was certain all would be well. For no particular reason that I can recall, I ventured down the passageway that led to the senior 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 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: 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 scraping 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 eighteen-year-old boys stood before me. They were dressed in their regulation grey-and-white-striped pyjamas. The evidence of their crimes lay all around them. A deck of playing cards and hastily extinguished cigarettes.

There was very little to say. They had been caught in the act.

“Attend my study immediately. Wait outside for my arrival.”

Such a command could mean only one thing: a beating was imminent.

I watched four sorrowful schoolboys as they trudged down the passageway. I put the cigarettes in my pocket; I would smoke them myself later. I searched the room half-expecting to find a whisky bottle secreted somewhere, but there was none.

Minutes later I joined the four miscreants at my study. They stood in the passageway facing the wall with their hands on their heads. I had not instructed this, but it was a standard requirement of any boy sent to attend a housemaster’s study. These four knew the drill. There was not a bottom before me that I had not thrashed before.

I called the four into my study and they stood in front of my leather-topped desk. Like so many schoolboys in their situation they took an intense interest in the rug beneath their feet. I instructed them to look at me and I jawed them. I did not take too long; we all knew why we were there.

As any schoolmaster should attest, the cane is a highly efficient tool of punishment. No caned boy can be in any doubt of his schoolmaster’s disapproval. His buttocks will glow and so they should. The punishment is delivered and is then over within minutes; then we all move on with our lives.

I knew each of the four boys before me intimately. They were all similarly culpable in this evening’s crime. None of them was a leader and none the led. I could treat them all equally – and that was precisely what I did.

Hardly a day goes by without my caning a boy. My preferred method is to make him lay face down across the back of my worn armchair; his arms stretched ahead of him; his feet firmly planted eighteen inches apart on the ground and his bottom raised. The buttocks are presented at the perfect angle to receive swipes from my cane across the fleshiest part of the posterior.

I reached across to the hat stand that stood in the corner of the study. I always have at least two canes – one thick and one thin – dangling ready for action.

“Wright,” I called, “Bend over the chair.”

Wright would not catch my eye, even though this was hardly a new experience for the eighteen-year-old. He stepped forward and rather like a diver going into an icy pond he flopped forward and held on to the arms of the chair.

“Come now Wright,” I sighed, “You have been here often enough. You know the form: head low, bottom high, feet apart.” He wriggled about a bit until he was presented to my satisfaction.

I choose the thicker of the two canes, flexed it between my hands, and tapped Wright gently across the very centre of his bottom. Six strokes of the cane fell, hard, one after another.  Every one was a hefty lash; but no sound came from Wright. When I gave permission, he rose from the desk, his face pale, and his eyes glinting. He resumed his position alongside his fellow poker players.

“Amber, step forward.”

The boys were stoical, but Amber, who it must be reported had a very meaty backside, wriggled a little as each stroke fell. I do not play games when I cane a boy. Each swipe fell with great force. It was as if I were beating a carpet.

Tears were forming behind Amber’s eyes when he rose from the desk. I could see he desperately wished to rub at his fleshy behind, but such a thing is not permitted. There is some unwritten code: no rubbing until you are out of the eyesight of the schoolmaster.

Prior was next. I had last thrashed the boy only the previous week. That had been for breaking bounds. I had laid it on him with terrific force; he was a recidivist and often skipped out of school. He must have a high tolerance for pain; it was as if he had hardly felt a thing. I had considered later that perhaps he had smuggled some padding beneath his trousers. This time with only his pyjama bottoms for protection there would be no doubt.

As had his fellows, Prior positioned himself without fuss. I saw him close his eyes and shut his teeth in anticipation of the searing pain he was about to endure.

A caning is really a competition of sorts between the master giving correction and the boy accepting it. One has to inflict; one has to endure. I must lay these strokes on the boys’ bottoms with all the skill I can muster. I must be firm; I must be precise. My job is to be the agent of authority. The boy’s job is to hold fast, without crying or begging to be let off. In short, to accept the discipline.

Prior behaved admirably. I could see welts forming under the thin cotton pyjamas. The thrashing must have hurt him terribly, but he showed little outward sign. When commanded, he rose and took his position alongside the others.

Tracey was last to go. He had witnessed the stoicism of his fellows. I do not know if this adds to the intensity of the occasion. Did knowing that the others had taken their beating well put additional pressure on a boy not to let himself down?

Tracey was over the chair in a trice. It was as if he were saying, “Go ahead, do your worst. I can take it.”

I did indeed do my worst; or do I mean my best? I delivered six of my very best across the most tender part of the boy’s bottom at the point where the under-curve of the cheeks met the thigh. Tracey’s body wriggled and writhed; his hips swayed and his feet marched up and down on the carpet. I heard him cough and splutter as he successfully stifled the yells he most certainly wanted to make.

It was over. I estimate it had taken no more than three minutes to put the boys through their paces. They stood before me with four pairs of blazing buttocks. I am not a cruel man, I knew they very much wanted to be on their way down to the lavatories where they would inspect the damage, admire my handiwork, and congratulate one another on their fortitude.

I sent them on their way. Later, I lit one of the confiscated cigarettes and returned to the wireless. A musical interlude was being broadcast. I leaned back in my armchair and blew smoke rings at the ceiling and reflected on my efforts – a very contented man indeed.

Picture Credit: CP Services London

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More stories from Charles Hamilton II are on the MMSA website

 

Charles Hamilton the Second

charleshamiltonthesecond@gmail.com