I wandered into their world at Hallowe’en, when the boundaries between our realities are at their thinnest.
The further I fled from the city, the lonelier the roads became, until I found myself quite alone, coasting down country lanes. Destination anywhere.
Just the hum of my car, the whirr of its tires, and all around me, the mesmerising colours of autumn. It was meditative, yet almost sublimely unsettling, driving into a forest that had once been so verdant, so full of life, but now was withering.
I sped through a beautiful melancholy. Around me, it felt as if the spirit of nature itself was dying – or fleeing, aware of the advance of a malign icy force lurking over the horizon. A presence that was slowly obscuring the sun, concealing its light, lengthening the shadows. I could already feel its chill influence when I ventured outside, a frosty spirit that sapped me of energy, encouraging my primeval self to retreat back to my shelter.
For our ancestors the encroaching winter must have felt like a malevolent invasion, as if the world around them was fighting for its continued existence. Precarious, anxiously awaiting the chilling, killing, smothering shroud of snows.
I stared through the windscreen at the passing blur, feeling a lingering sorrow for the leaves, their lifeforce being inexorably extinguished by the cold enveloping mists. Never was the passage of time so evident, at Autumn we watch as what was once so exuberant shrivels with age, yellowing and tumbling before our eyes. Annihilated by an invisible, irresistible power, one scarier than any monster we can imagine.
Perhaps our unease at this time of year fuelled folk tales of ghosts and vampires. Yet they don’t haunt our imaginations in the dark depths of midwinter, their time is at the end of October, when the world around us is visibly dying. Hallowe’en was a memento mori, a reminder that regardless of your youth or your power, vitality was transient. That everything you held dear, all you’d ever love and struggle for, all would ultimately shrivel and fall. It was inescapable, indisputable, immutable; whether meek or mighty, in time we’d all share the fate of the leaves.
A chill sensation ran over my skin, raising goosebumps. And it felt like everything and nothing had suddenly changed…
I shivered, momentarily lifting my foot from the accelerator pedal. Where exactly was I now anyway? I’d been deliberately ignoring the passing road-signs, I wanted to run, to get as far away as possible from the wretched city and all its crushing responsibilities and petty heart-breaks. I had no one to talk to, even my friends were becoming difficult to recognise, settling into parodies of themselves, slaves to what was expected of them.
Life is a sequence of decisions, and I’d made mine. Impulsively, impetuously, I was escaping.
I put my foot back down, the engine growling in agreement as we roared down an avenue of dying, flaming, cascading leaves, which swirled deliriously in my wake.
Moment to moment, life is simply a succession of choices. I reached a junction, and turned left. Then later, another, turning right. What did it matter which direction I went? Left. Left. Right. Left. I no longer cared where I was going.
I drove until the road ran out, the country lane eventually turning into a gravel driveway, and now I was approaching an imposing stately home. Large undecorated columns dominated its Georgian-era facade, with full-height lantern windows in between. Its grand edifice was intimidating rather than inviting, everything about this latter day castle seeming to declare its inhabitants’ authority and prestige.
When the driveway ended in front of the mansion, I could drive no further, I knew I must either stop here, or turn the car around. My car’s batteries were low, to go any further I’d need their indulgence to recharge. So I clambered out of the car, my stiff legs protesting as as I stretched. Instinctively I reached into my pocket to check my phone. No signal. I brought up the map app. Unable to determine location.
The imposing old house was fringed by a wide sandstone terrace, with steps leading down to the gardens, and up to a pair of grandiose wooden doors, the kind I must have seen countless times on TV, being heaved open by a couple of burly doormen. A braided wool chain hung at hand-height, as if inviting me to pull it, so I did.
I shuffled awkwardly on my feet, preparing to introduce myself, but no one appeared.
I looked around, back to my car, sitting alone on the driveway, a single incongruously modern object amid surroundings that probably hadn’t changed in a hundred years. I absent-mindedly ran my hands across the varnished wood of door panels, they felt sturdy. I pushed against one, and to my surprise, one side of the double doors opened.
I peeped through the gap I’d created, into the house beyond, though all I could see was a patch of floor covered by an elegant carpet. So I pushed the door ajar further, calling out a speculative “Hello…?”
There was no reply.
Another choice. Another opportunity to go a different way. But I ventured inside, my excuses already rehearsed inside my head for the moment when I encounter its inhabitants. I’m so dreadfully sorry to intrude, I was driving by and I appear to have got lost…
And so I wandered between the rooms, this place was a time capsule, parlours of paintings and sumptuous antique furniture. Some rooms contained some most unusual statues, each formed of exquisitely carved marble, life-sized life-like depictions of young men and women, almost all of them naked. But their poses, I’d never seen anything like them. In some their hands seem to be reaching behind themselves, as if rubbing their buttocks. Their faces contorted in discomfort. Some have their hands atop their heads, some scowling, some seemingly waiting absent-mindedly.
I also began to notice none of the clocks on the walls on mantelpieces were ticking, all had stopped or broken at Twelve.
But it was what I saw when I entered a wood-panelled study that really made me gasp. All manner of canes, straps and paddles hanging on the wall. I advanced tentatively, glancing up and down the owner’s bookshelves, and found rows upon rows of books on the same illicit subject.
Readings on Corporal Punishment Volumes I to XIII. On The Spanking of Naughty Schoolgirls. The Art of Discipline. Obedience Through Caning. Headmistress Memories. Spanking, Enemas and Figging. The Importance of Disciplinary Rituals. The Governess Journals Volumes I to XXV.
I plucked a book at random, letting it fall open at an arbitrary page, and read the first paragraph my eyes chanced upon.
“In the punishment room is an armless high-backed chair, its cushioned seat a comfortable beige chamois. Even the most observant visitor might never notice that just below, about a leg length to the right, is a little worn patch on the carpet.
“The chair is where I sit when I put the young ladies over my knee, their tip-toes just touching the floor. The bare patch is where their tip-toes scuff as they struggle and kick. They say a girl acts half her age when she is spanked, some childishly whimpering and flailing as her bottom is justly warmed.”
There could now be no doubt as to the proclivities of this house’s owner. And I must confess, I did begin to wonder what might happen if I was discovered here. Would I be made to bend over and touch my toes? Would a stranger smack my bottom? Would the experience really make me act half my age? I found the thought both shocking and unexpectedly thrilling.
Now feeling even naughtier, I continued to explore this vast and seemingly deserted mansion. My reticence fading, I began to open doors as I passed them, encountering a series of impeccably furnished dining rooms, reception rooms and salons. I never saw a television or a telephone, or indeed anything more modern than bulbous filament light bulb.
The sprawling kitchens were spotlessly clean, their cupboards filled with cast iron pots and fine china crockery. Yet the pantries were completely empty of food.
And then there were the rooms with the little details that made me gulp when I realised their significance. The bathroom with the rubber enema bags hanging from the wall, and packets of glycerin and ginger suppositories on the shelves, the archaic writing on the packaging proudly announcing the manufacturer’s own “Patent Remedy”, and promising its users “immediate reinvigoration”.
There was what must have been an enema chair with the nozzle protruding ominously from its seat, buckle restraints on the armrests for the occupant’s wrists, and at the bottom of the cruel chair’s legs for their ankles. And above the headrest, affixed to the chair’s tall elongated frame, an open-topped glass jug with a spigot tap. Empty, for now.
There was a room with a padded bench and raised leg stirrups, and wrist cuffs at the side of the headrest too. On a side table lay a pile of waxing strips, a tub of shaving cream and several safety razors. A rack of riding crops of every conceivable size lurked ominously on the wall behind. Was this a place of hygiene or punishment?
A shiver ran through me as pictured what it would be like to be made to undress and lie back on that bench, spreading my legs wide in the stirrups. The tightening of buckles around wrists and ankles, and then waxing strips being pressed against my mound, my armpits and my bottom hole. Would they be ripped away immediately? Or would a crop be fetched from the rack first? Perhaps a good whipping between my thighs would prove a merciful distraction, before the cruelty of that one final rip, and its fiery flash of pain.
I backed away from the bench reverently, nervously eyeing the door, expecting at any moment to be discovered by the occupant. Not that I considered myself in any potential peril. What would he do? Imprison me? Enslave me? It was an exciting thought, but quite ridiculous. No, any apprehension was born of social embarrassment. What would I say to the owner of this place if I was found wandering around it? It would be mortifying.
But the lure of uncovering what was behind each door was proving irresistible, and there was still plenty of this vast residence to explore. I retraced my steps back to the central hall and carefully ascended the grand sweeping staircase, mind racing, wondering who or what I might encounter around the corner.
On reaching the upstairs hall I went straight to the nearest door and strode inside without even knocking. This was a bedroom, the brass-framed bed looked inviting but it was the little journal on the writing table that immediately caught my eye, embossed gilt letters on its spine announcing it as My Spanking Diary.
I picked up the leather bound journal, and began thumbing through it. I had expected a few curt entries, but was delighted to find almost every page filled with detailed recollections of the author’s spanking experiences. The owner of the diary went by the name of Beatrice, and not only did she appear to be punished regularly, she clearly enjoyed recording the details of her discipline too. Fragments of text leapt from the page, as my eager eyes scanned across them.
“… I was spanked on my bare bottom…”
“… I earned a good hard whacking…”
“… all three of us were thoroughly caned…”
I went back to read that last entry in full, it seemed the author and two of her friends had borrowed horses without permission, and gallivanted into the countryside. But their governess had been waiting for them at the stables on their return. She had stripped the girls of their riding clothes there and then, and marched them naked to the marble plinths that faced the grand old house.
The diary describes how each of them climbed the steps until they were standing on top of their own platform. Their governess made them bend over with their legs apart, their palms flat on the stone surface, their bare bottoms facing the house so its residents could witness their shame. The governess left them there to wait whilst she fetched a cane from her study. And then, on her return, she whacked each of the miscreants appropriately.
Afterwards the author recounts how they each thanked their disciplinarian for their spankings, and then obediently waited with their bottom stripes on display until they were permitted to re-enter the house. Beatrice ends by wondering “if he was watching me, and whether he could spy my secrets”. I think she might have a crush on someone in this house.
Heart set racing by these revelations, I moved towards the window, and there, behind where I’d parked my car I could see quite clearly the stone plinths the writer had mentioned. The places where naughty girls (and boys?) went to get their bottoms smacked.
Imagining those words made my clit ache. Suddenly, I needed to touch myself. I unbuttoned my jeans, urgently burying my hand in my panties. My slit was already slick and sticky. An urge overcame me. I needed to be naked. I undressed urgently, throwing my clothes to the floor, before reclining on this strangers’ bed like some sordid Goldilocks.
I picked up the diary again, flicking to another entry.
“… I was very rude and talked back to Governess today. For punishment, she made me grip a cane between my teeth, and then applied a patch of bright red lipstick to my pouting lips. Governess warned me I would be severely caned if I got any lipstick on the cane, or if I let it fall to the floor.
“It was so, so humiliating to walk around the house with a stick in my mouth like some drooling hound! And those pitying glances from the girls, who knew just what I had in store! Before long, my tongue and jaw were aching, and I was desperate for Governess to end my torment. When she finally took the cane from the mouth and examined it, I was exceedingly relieved when she announced she couldn’t find any lipstick on it!
“The reward for my compliance was to be put across her knee, but the bare bum spanking she gave me with her hand was far preferable to the agonies of one of her canings, where you feel the stripes for days! I was perfectly silent and obedient as I got my bottom smacked, I’ve certainly learned my lesson about not talking back and the virtue of silence!”
What was this place? Who were its inhabitants?
My fingers played between my lips as I read and re-read the words in the diary again, conjuring vivid images inside my mind, picturing the succession of spankings the poor girl had received. There was an account of getting in trouble with several of her friends, and how they all were slippered on their bare bums before lining up to have the nozzle of an enema hose pushed into their bottoms. The truth was, these accounts of her punishments turned me on immensely, I couldn’t help but imagine what it would be like to be subject to such strict discipline.
I rubbed myself, quicker and quicker, until I could no longer resist plunging my fingers deep inside. I saw pink bottoms behind my closed eyes and the sounds of imagined spankings filled my head. In time, I shouted my climax into the empty house, no longer caring if there were any ears to hear.
Afterwards, I must have fallen into a deep, deep sleep.
I awoke to see a girl in old fashioned clothes looming over me, demanding to know what I was doing in her room.
I sprang to my feet in shock, covering my nakedness as best I could, whilst lamely spluttering an excuse about getting lost, and being overcome by tiredness. I scanned the floor urgently for my clothes, but couldn’t find any trace of them. Now frantic, I ran to the window, desperate for anything that might corroborate my preposterous story. I teetered and almost fainted when I looked outside and realised my car was gone.
In the midst of my despair, an older woman appeared, dressed equally archaically.
“Governess!’” the girl began, “This…”
The visitor silenced her with a glare.
“Go downstairs, please, Beatrice…”
The girl obeyed immediately, the woman she’d called Governess didn’t address me, merely looking me up and down, as a cat might scrutinise a little bird.
“I can explain…” I offered, cowering submissively with my right hand covering my crotch, and my other arm across my breasts. I could still feel the dried residue of my own arousal on my fingertips. I felt filthy and degenerate.
“I know everything.” she countered.
She did not seem to be surprised to see me in the least.
“Come with me.” she instructed, in the kind of strict tone that suggested no opportunity for disagreement.
I followed her down the stairs, still naked, and still trying to cover myself. When she stopped by the study to collect a cane, I cowered beside a grandfather clock in the hall. It was ticking again, and I could feel the trembling of its huge springs quivering my body as every moment passed. The patch of carpet beneath my feet was faded and threadbare, was this where naughty miscreants were made to wait? How many generations of feet had fidgeted and shuffled on this very spot?
The stern-faced lady reappeared, her dark grey full-length dress billowing, like an angry thundercloud. She had a long cane in her hand, which she used to wordlessly shepherd me from behind the clock and down the hallway. She pushed the front door open, ushering me outside, towards one of the high plinths opposite the house. The chill air prickled my skin and made my nipples stiff.
“My car…!?” I pleaded, as I passed the empty space where I’d parked. There weren’t even any tire-tracks in the gravel.
The strict woman directed me to climb one of the tall marble plinths. Each was about three metres high, and little steps cut into each side, spiralling up to the top. Once I was standing on top of the platform I covered what I could of my nakedness as I faced the grand old house. Behind the windows, I could see curtains twitching, the glint of faces peeping surreptitiously. What had appeared to be an empty house now seemed to possess many occupants, and I, I realised, had just become the latest spectacle.
The Governess followed me up the steps to join me, and immediately turned me round so I had my back to the house. Now I looked out over the sprawling gardens and, from where I was standing, began to see many other statues scattered around the grounds, some small and distant, others overgrown and almost hidden. Every one of the statues was naked. Of those close enough to see, many seemed to be in the act of running, a few even seemed to have one or both of their hands behind them, as if rubbing their bottoms.
“Who are they?” I asked.
“Who were they?” the Governess corrected.
“Runaways, like you. But they didn’t want to stay. Kept babbling on about not belonging here, about bizarre futuristic fantasies, of flying machines and talking boxes.”
All I could do was let my mouth drop open in horror.
“They’d break this world if they carried on talking like that. So reality protects itself; anything that doesn’t belong here is turned to stone.”
I could feel my own toes being chilled by the cold stone platform, soon I couldn’t feel them at all. I could feel my ankles stiffening. I looked down to see my feet marble white. I could feel I was being presented with one final decision, one where the wrong choice might have dire and permanent consequences.
“Where is… this?”
“Why, it’s where runaways run to. You can’t keeping running without ending up somewhere. But sometimes a runaway just needs a second chance, a bit of affection, and some strict discipline, of course…”
She put a finger under my chin, raising my eyes to meet hers.
“Do you belong here?” she asked me earnestly, as if this was the most important question she’s ever posed.
Now I understood now where the statues came from: the same world I’d run from. Perhaps they’d tired of their host’s authority, of obeying rules and accepting punishments. Maybe one day as they’d stood in a corner, their bare bottoms smouldering from their latest spanking, their minds simmering with resentment, they’d convinced themselves they didn’t deserve to be disciplined, and that they really didn’t belong here. Perhaps they’d tried to run. But by the time they felt their limbs stiffen, it would already be too late.
Survival here, I realised, depended on obedience. I forced myself to let go of my resistance, my natural rebelliousness, closing my eyes and permitting new possibilities to flood into my mind. I began to see echoes of new potential futures. Distant laughter, the whinnying of horses, new friends to be made, new adventures to be had as the 20th Century dawned – or at least, some variation of it.
As I contemplated my answer, one particularly vivid image materialised unbidden in my mind. I saw myself standing in line, with several young women who I just knew were my own close friends. We were all dressed in our nighties. Ahead of us, was the Governess, holding a leather slipper, beckoning the first in line towards her lap. Behind her, hooked onto a curtain rail, hung several red rubber enema bags, already filled and bulging, one for each of us. The thick plugs already slathered with lubricant jelly that glinted in the firelight, the hoses dangling expectantly like snakes from a branch.
What hijinks could have brought us here I wonder? We must have had such fun to risk such painful repercussions. A good hard spanking on the bare, then off to face the wall with our hands on our head, before she pushed the thick plug between our sore smarting cheeks, and turned the tap to fill our naughty bottoms with warm soapy water, making us each feel like naughty urchins all over again.
At that moment, I felt a buzz run through me, a thrill, a long-forgotten realisation that everything here was unfamiliar again and ready to be discovered. That youthful exuberance born from knowing a whole lifetime stretched ahead, a new wildly unpredictable adventure. Perhaps this world, one seemingly permeated by strict authority and intimate punishments, would prove more satisfying than the one I’d just fled.
I bent over compliantly, spreading my legs wide, letting my palms rest on the cold marble beneath me.
I could feel warmth ebbing back into my feet, and the Governess’s cane tapping against my bottom. I knew I deserved to be punished. I knew this would be the first entry in my own spanking diary. And I knew it would be the first of many.
I wonder if someone will one day stray into my bedroom, chance upon my secret diary, and find themselves reading these very words.
I do hope you’ll stay, stranger.
“Yes…” I told my Governess, my voice firm with conviction, “I belong here.”
Originally posted at spankingtheatre.tumblr.com.
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