‘This place is a shithouse!’
She can say that again. The whole station’s a dump!
‘An utter shithouse!’
She says it again. Such language, and from an officer too! Christ, but I wish I’d never joined this bloody outfit!
‘You’ll clean it up! Right now! No one will leave this barrack block until it’s done.’
She’s a shithouse! She clicks off along the lino and out through the swing doors.
‘Sodding hell! What a cow! Jesus Christ — it’ll take us all night!’
We all moan like mad. Jenny and I slouch on my bed and listen to the other girls complaining. The WRAF Corporal in charge of us bangs through the doors. She’s as mad as hell! She’s got to stay and see we do the cleaning up! The thing is, Jenny and I have got a date down in Folkestone — and the bus goes in fifteen minutes. Shall we risk it? Shall we just bugger off and leave them to it? The corporal slopes off, leaving the air thick with threats. Jenny and I take our lives in our hands and scoot down the fire escape. The other girls howl at us — sod them! If they’re stupid enough to stay there and waste half the evening, let them.
It’s as black as pitch outside. We sneak round the parade ground and down the back of some corrugated iron huts. We make for the hole in the perimeter fence.
Some stupid sod’s gone and mended the bloody fence! We crouch in the long grass and wonder if we dare. We decide we do dare. Bold as brass we nip along to the main gate and walk past the guardhouse. There’s an RAF Regiment bloke on the gate, big as an AEC lorry only without the wheels. Jenny whispers that she knows him. She’d better, our pass-out chits are two days old! She sticks her tits in his face and chats him up for all she’s worth.
It turns out it must’ve been his brother she knew. He’s not interested in tits either. The bus comes and goes. We give up. Miserable as can be we decide it’ll have to be a cup of tea in the NAAFI, then back to the billet. We walk down towards the NAAFI and straight into the worst kind of trouble.
We freeze. It’s the shithouse!
‘Yes ma’am, no ma’am’ — it’s hopeless. This just isn’t our night. She’s got us cold and there isn’t any way we’re going to wriggle out of this!
Half an hour later Jenny and I are standing outside the hut that passes for a gym. We’re both in PT kit; plimsolls, shorts, cotton tops. Jenny is putting on a cigarette — she’s asking for trouble.
‘Christ — I hope we’re doing the right thing!’
‘Don’t be bloody stupid! If she’d put us on a charge we wouldn’t be getting off this station in a month of Sundays!’
‘Yes, but — well, you know what they say about her!’
I know. Funny thing is, it’s kind of, well — interesting. The sort of thing you can’t quite believe, not if you’re eighteen and as innocent as me and Jenny. Which isn’t to say we don’t try — we do! Only so far we haven’t had much luck, which doesn’t say much for our way with the boys, considering there are supposed to be over a thousand blokes in this place. Tonight didn’t help either.
The shithouse is a sneaky bitch — she comes round the wrong end of the hut, walking through the grass. Jenny’s lips are pursing for a puff of her cigarette just as our officer comes up behind us. We nearly jump out of our knickers — or would have, if we’d had any on under our shorts. I haven’t — maybe Jenny has, but I don’t know. Jenny’s cigarette goes up in the air and we stand to attention, thumbs down the seams of our skirts — which in our case we aren’t wearing.
‘Well, well, well —’ She goes on like this for a bit while we stand like a pair of lemons in the darkness outside the gym. We hear the key in the lock, then we’re ushered inside, me feeling a hand on my bum as I slip into the dark hallway. Straws in the wind!
She makes us check the blackout curtains before she switches on the light. I bump into everything there is to bump into, and Jenny wails as she, or something, falls onto the floor.
‘Be quiet!’ The lights go on. She’s wearing a little games skirt, jumper, prissy white socks and a pair of plimsolls. Jenny and I stand in front of her and get ourselves inspected.
I feel strange. She walks behind me, in front of me, back behind me again. I stand up straighter than ever. I want to stick my breasts out — Lord knows why! I feel the lightest of touches brush across my bottom. Out of the corner of my eye I see Jenny getting the same treatment. She edges away, pushing her hips forward a fraction. Plimsolls squelch softly behind me, the touch of fingers, lingering a fraction longer. A voice in my ear, the faintest whisper.
‘Wearing knickers, Warley?’
‘N-no, ma’am’ My voice is ridiculously hoarse.
‘Really —’ a long pause, a hand stroking along under my bum-cheeks. ‘— how did you know, Warley?’
Know? Know what? Not to wear knickers? I didn’t. Didn’t even think about it. Christ, I feel funny! My head’s all swimmy. She touches me where the crease of my bum becomes the tops of my thighs. Her fingers stay there. All I can think is I hope Jenny can’t see, because I’m not pulling away or anything. Or anything? Yes, I am. I’m nudging my bottom back against her hand. Why? I don’t know. But there’s a kind of electric tension around me. Around us both. She pads around in front of me and looks me straight in the eyes. She knows. Knows what? About me. What about me? I don’t know, but — but she knows. Something that I don’t. About me. About us. I feel myself beginning to shiver. She smiles at me. I forget everything — I even forget Jenny. I don’t remember why I’m here. At least, not the original why. But I do know the other why. Because something is going to happen — is happening — between me and this strange, overpowering woman. She goes to Jenny. I feel abandoned. I want her to come back.
I hear Jenny saying, ‘Yes ma’am’ I don’t quite catch what the woman says. I hear an undressing sound. Out of the corner of my eye I see Jenny stooping forward. She is taking her shorts down. And her knickers. Pulling her shorts back up.
‘I don’t think I said anything about pulling them up again, did I?’
Jenny’s voice is a hushed fluster.
‘N-no, ma’am — s-sorry ma’am.’
The woman comes back. Looks at me from about three feet away. I’m trembling all over. Without taking her eyes off me she tells Jenny to step out of her shorts and leave them with her knickers. She goes away again. I have to stand at attention. Jenny disappears from the edge of my vision. I hear them walking down the length of the gym. There is the sound of their shoes. An unidentifiable platting sound. Someone clapping their hands — very quietly? Jenny whimpers — it sounds like — what? Pain? No. Fright? Could be. Helplessness? Helplessness? Yes. That’s what Jenny’s whimper sounds like. Utter helplessness. I feel my knees going weak from some weird excitement.
I hear the woman’s voice. Jenny mumbling replies. Plimsolls squeaking on the floor. The clapping sounds again, but louder.
Plimsolls squeaking again. Several bumps. Jenny gasping. I want desperately to turn round, but I dare not. Because I dare not discover what is happening to Jenny. Because I know. Jenny is getting her bum smacked! She squeals. Again she squeals, then splutters. The sound of the applause gets a little louder. And louder. It is the sound of one man in a theatre, clapping. It is the sound of one woman applauding in a theatre. I am on the stage. I am undressing. I am being made to undress. I am blushing with shame. I am naked. I am shaking with excitement. The woman is clapping still. The applause is not appreciative. It is ironic. The woman is smiling.
The clapping stops. I hear Jenny’s weeping, her steps behind me. She stoops beside me. She runs to the door. She is naked from the waist down. Her bottom is pink. Fiery pink. She closes the door.
‘Come here, Warley.’
I turn. Not an about-turn, RAF-style. I am not in the RAF. I am no longer on the stage. I am a little girl, back at school. The woman is — who? My teacher? No — not exactly. I don’t know who she is. I don’t know who I am.
The sound of her voice is frightening. I walk fearfully towards her. It is a long way. She is standing with her hands on her hips. Feet apart. It is a long way. I slow down as I approach her. I stop. I stand at attention. I find that I cannot look anywhere but her eyes. She stares at me. She can see right through me. She reaches out. Points. Speaks softly to me.
‘You can take this off.’
I pull my shirt up to my breasts. I don’t seem to be wearing a bra. My tits swing heavily as I free them from the jumper. She comes towards me. I know she is going to touch my breasts. I want her to.
She helps me pull my shirt over my head. My breasts ache to be touched. Please — please. I think I am closing my eyes. Her hands are at either side of my waist. Sliding down over my hips. I am fainting. I feel my shorts tugging around my hips. The air on my buttocks, the tightness of the elastic as it stretches across my bum. My bottom springs free of the shorts. She is moving to a chair. I am being urged to go with her. Her bare thighs are amazingly warm against my tummy. My shorts have evaporated. I must be naked.
My bottom is being stroked. Her hand is warm too. Warm from Jenny’s bum? From spanking Jenny’s bum? Another hand, with fingers on it, is slipping around my waist and down the valley of my loins. Delving deeper. Feeling liquid and slippery.
I hear the applause start again. I feel unsteady across her bare legs. I am rocking rhythmically to and fro. There is a warming, toasting sensation in my bum. Jolting, sharp, yet not sharp. Coming and going. Yet all one. My breath sounds noisy in my throat. I am gasping. Aren’t I? My breasts are bobbing about. I catch glimpses of them as I struggle. Gasping? No. Crying, I think. Sobbing. I am wriggling. No, I’m not. But my hips are. My bottom is struggling? No. Not struggling. Not me. My bottom, squirming. I am toasting. Down between my legs. Down with the slipperiness. My bum is roasting. Hot. Shivery. Jumpy.
Her voice is silky. It washes over me and cocoons me in silk. I am two people. I am weeping. I am worming on her lap. I am very, very still. I am safe. I am sobbing wretchedly. My hips are jerking. Hips? Bum — yes. Frantically. But lower down? Move underneath. Yes, yes! I am not here. I can see her hand spanking me. I can see all of me, as from above. I am helpless. I am pleading, in words I don’t know the meaning of. I am squealing. I am coming! Coming!
I am dreaming, I think. I am naked. I am kneeling naked on the floor. My face is pressed against the softness of her legs. My tears are trickling down between the satin of her thighs. I am crying. I am happy. I am home.