‘It’s alright for you!’ She unbuttons her summer dress and lets it fall around her feet. She steps out of the circle of yellow-flowers and glares at Jasper, who stares back one-eyed, unmoved and unmoving, as is the way with examples of the species Edwardius Brunii. She walks around the bed in her little white knickers and her new bra and catches Jasper a substantial clout about the head. Jasper tumbles to the floor and grins lop-sidedly up at her, which makes her feel miserable and that absolutely no-one is on her side. She goes over to the window and looks disconsolately out over the garden and sees Henry and the Reverend Styles sitting on the terrace by the summer house, sipping cool drinks. She pokes out her tongue so vigorously that its end touches the glass, which makes her splutter and spit at the thought that now, on top of everything, she might have got germs!
Flouncing across her bedroom she snatches her pale blue shorts from the wardrobe and yanks them up her legs; then she yanks them down again, having remembered that she isn’t allowed knickers when there’s a possibility she might have to be spanked. She tosses her shorts on to her bed and steps out of her knickers, which she flings petulantly at Jasper, who is still grinning at her. Her shorts snag on her sandals but she tugs them up, couldn’t care less, then her bra joins her knickers in festooning Jasper’s head. She takes a sleeveless white tee shirt from the wardrobe and pulls it over her head, then brushes furiously at her hair with the side of her hairbrush that isn’t used for smacking her bottom. She slams her bedroom door as she goes out.
‘Uncle Henry! Uncle Henry!’ Emily stamps her foot in frustration, because no-one will listen to her. ‘Urrgh!’ she looks down at her wet sock and sandal ‘Oh, no!’
‘What is it?’ calls Henry from the terrace. Emily puts her squelchy foot down carefully beside her other on the stepping stone and holds a hand up to shade her eyes from the sun. Her pretty face screws up as she looks into the glare.
‘How long do I have to do this?’ she demands petulantly.
‘Until you’ve learnt not to throw tantrums in front of visitors.’ Henry and the vicar look indulgently in her direction.
‘But I’ve learnt, honest I have! Please, Uncle Henry—’
‘You can come in at tea-time, and not before.’
‘Oh! You pig!’ Her stepping stone wobbles and she waves her arms to keep her balance. She straightens up, out of danger, just. ‘You’re an absolute pig!’
‘And you can have a smacked bottom, Emily.’ The vicar beams, tactlessly. Emily pouts resentfully and stands tilt-hipped on her stepping stone in the middle of the pond, with only goldfish for company, her shorts pulling snug little creases across the tops of her thighs which direct the vicar’s eyes, quite naturally, to the plump out-swell of her pubic mound.
‘Oooh! Ow! Oh, Christ!’ Emily’s animated bottom gets several harder slaps for blaspheming in front of their clerical guest; her shorts slither from mid-thigh to the backs of her knees and she kicks furiously as those thighs too catch the flat of Henry’s hand. Her complaints become less articulate as these spanks sting her bare legs, with more ‘Ooo-ghs’ and ‘Ooo-hoo-hoo’s’ than intelligible slanders against Uncle Henry’s character. Henry puts a leg across the backs of Emily’s scissoring thighs and traps them under his arm, while he bends her more firmly over his knee and then catches first one flailing hand then the other and holds them well out of the way in the small of her back. Thus pinioned, with her rose-tinted bottom tilted up, her head down and an ecclesiastical eye on the immodestly bent-over exhibition of the moist little place at the junction of her thighs, Emily gets the rest of her well-deserved spanking.
The sun dips behind the trees and shadows stretch across the terrace; Emily stands, pouty-lipped and resentful of gaze, on the intersecting lines formed by four of the terrace’s flagstones. Tears have dried on her face and her bottom is a fresh-spanked blaze of crimson; her shorts lollop limply around her ankles and her toes overlap, damp-socked foot on top, her knees turn in a little, and her thighs press together in what Henry hopes the vicar will interpret as virginal modesty.
‘Hmm,’ says the vicar over his gin and tonic. ‘Nice evening, isn’t it! In fact, it’s been a nice day altogether.’
Emily, whose bottom still smarts and who has noticed the gleam in Uncle Henry’s eye, doesn’t think she would agree, and thinks instead of Jasper, who will probably be given the opportunity, once the vicar has gone home and she has had her bath, to witness that further humiliation to which she is usually subjected when Uncle Henry doesn’t think that a smacked bottom has fully expiated her sins. She presses her legs more closely together and stares at the flagstones; hoping that the vicar won’t be invited too.
‘No, please — please. N-no—’ Her voice is a whisper in the darkened room. She isn’t allowed to interfere with her ‘punishment’, which is why she has to keep her hands on her head and her feet apart; her hips dip and jerk despite her protestations, and, still protesting, it isn’t long before Uncle Henry coaxes her beyond the point where she can hold back. She goes weak-kneed; through half-closed eyes she sees Jasper on her pillow. She closes her eyes and lets go, whispering breathlessly that she doesn’t want to; she comes with a discreet little shiver, pretending that she hasn’t, though she knows that Henry knows she has. And Jasper; probably Edwardius Brunii can see in the dark. Jasper knows all her secrets, including this one.
She really will have to consider, tomorrow, she thinks, as she goes to sleep; to consider whether, at seventeen, she is too old still to have a Teddy Bear.