by Lewis Stone
James stood and stared at his foster mother who was on the opposite side of the room getting the chair from under his desk. He recognized she would expect him to bend over her lap. He only had a towel wrapped around him as she had caught him coming out of the shower. As James watched, both his and her thoughts flitted back a month previous to when the social worker had asked James if he would accept a foster placement in Agnes' home.
He was just about seventeen and going into grade twelve when his parents deserted him, leaving him a house to live in, but no way to support himself. He had lived with an older male friend for a period of months, but with no money to support himself he couldn't continue to live as he had. Hoping he wouldn't regret the decision, he phoned the Child Welfare authorities who stated they would do what they could. Even in 1966, foster home placements for one in his age bracket were difficult to find, so when Agnes suggested she might be willing, a meeting was arranged between them, hoping the two of them would get along.
The meeting had gone well when Agnes asked the question that needed discussion. "So James, what happens when you get in trouble? Do I tell you to leave, ground you for weeks, make you write lines, or what?"
James pondered all the options. He wanted to get his grade twelve diploma, and Agnes lived in a school district that offered classes in what he wanted to do. "What did you do to your own kids when they lived at home?"
She looked at him square in the eye as she replied. "I spanked them, James. I spanked their bare bottoms until they cried. They didn't write lines or get grounded, but their bums were sore for at least a day after being over my lap."
He looked down at the table as she talked and wondered just how hard she spanked. "Why didn't you just ground them, or make them write lines like a lot of parents do?"
Agnes shrugged her shoulders. "I listened to other parents who did ground their teenagers, and found it was as much punishment for the parent as it was for the teenager. Same with writing lines, it's a big hassle. I don't like hassles, James. Spankings hurt, but they once they are over, things are back to normal. No hassles, no holding grudges by me or my kids. We all knew the rules and the consequences of breaking them."
"I hate writing lines and hate being grounded even more." He kept his voice low so only she could hear as he wasn't sure if any social worker was listening.
Agnes felt sorry for him as she could tell he was a good kid. She didn't want to be any tougher on him than it would take for the two of them to get along. "So James, the only option left is to spank you. Is that what you are agreeing to? If you agree, James, you need to know I will not fight you. I will not insist on spanking you if you rebel. If you do not cooperate, I will ask you to leave my house plain and simple. Are we agreed?"
James nodded his agreement, and soon Agnes had the authority and financial support to have him live with her. The first week was like a honeymoon, both young teenager and older adult going out of their way to make the other comfortable. They shared a lot of laughter, and got to know more about each other through stories and life experiences. The second week with school in session and Agnes working full-time found the two of them were still giving in to each other, but boundaries were drawn and arrangements set that had to be followed.
It was in their fourth week together that real life settled in and they got into an argument. James wanted more money than Agnes gave him on a weekly basis because of an upcoming school dance. He wanted to make an impression with the girls, and in his mind that took a lot of money. His allowance was a silly thing to argue over as Social Services had made clear how much he was to get, but he thought Agnes should give him more for doing chores around the house. After arguing over a period of days and not getting the extra dollars, James swore at her as he jumped up and left the room. He then shouted he was having a shower and banged the bathroom door closed in response to her demand that he come back to apologize.
He spent over half an hour in the bathroom trying to figure out why he had sworn at Agnes. He knew she did not deserve it, but it seemed such a small thing for her to give him an extra five dollars. He took his time going over in his mind how he would apologize to Agnes, and hoped that the apology would still lead to him getting the extra money. After throwing all his clothes in the laundry basket, he wrapped the bath towel around him and came out of the bathroom heading directly to his bedroom. He would get dressed and then put in one final effort to get the five dollars he desperately sought for the dance the next night.
He entered his bedroom and closed the door before he noticed Agnes sitting on the edge of his bed. She did not need to say a word about her intentions as she was holding a wooden paddle in her hand. She stood up, walked across his room to pull the chair out from under his desk, and walked to the center of the room, placing the chair down with a firm bang.
The bang of the chair legs hitting the floor brought both of their thoughts back to the present. They both knew of the fostering agreement reached between the two of them, and now was the time to see if it would hold when it came down to real life. The next few minutes would decide if they had a relationship suitable for both of them.
"Remember what I told you when we talked, James? I will not fight you or force you over my knee, but the choice is either you take the spanking or start packing your bags as you will be leaving tomorrow. You have two minutes to make up your mind. In two minutes, you will be over my lap or packing your clothes. Which is it going to be?"
Agnes sat down and turned to look at him. He saw her look at her watch and knew the two minutes was passing. He had learned enough about Agnes to know that she meant what she said. He would be spanked or pack his clothes, and he had to make that choice before the two minutes was up. His hands were playing with the knot holding the towel around his waist. He found himself tightening it as if in some way a tighter knot would prevent having his bare bottom displayed over her lap.
Agnes sighed as she saw the confusion on his face as to what he should do. She had taken to having him around, and hoped with a little encouragement he would cooperate.
"Remember, James, spankings hurt for a little while and then are over. Moving to another family takes a long time and things start all over again. You have thirty seconds to decide."
Fifteen seconds later, he came and stood beside her, the tears already forming in his eyes as he realized he didn't want to leave her. "I will take the spanking. Sorry I swore at you."
Agnes put her hand under his chin and raised his head. He had been staring at the paddle resting on her lap as if hoping it would somehow disappear. "I will accept your apology later, James. Right after you have felt the paddle across your backside for a few minutes. Did your parents ever paddle you at home?"
"I used to get the hairbrush from my grandmother when I was younger. That was when I was in elementary school so it's been a long time. I got caned once or twice and the belt a few times, but mostly I had to write lines after grandma moved out."
"OK, you likely know the rules. No standing up until I tell you and keep your hands flat on the floor in front of you. You will cry, James, unless you are a lot tougher than I think you are. The last time I paddled my son for coming home drunk he was older than you and he still cried so I don't think it will be any different this time. Do you have any questions before we start?"
Seeing him shake his head from side to side, she continued talking. "I want you to loosen that knot on the towel and then move it around you until it is right beside me. I will open it after you are over my knee."
After loosening the knot, James twisted the towel around so it was next to Agnes's hip and raised it so it hung from just below his rib cage down just past his bum cheeks. He was getting more nervous as every second passed, and started to wonder if he had made the right choice instead of packing his suitcase. He knew there was some connection between him and Agnes, but had no real understanding of what that connection was now.
"Are you ready? The longer we wait the longer this whole thing will be. I want you to bend over my lap with your toes touching the ground and your hands firmly on the floor. You can squirm if you have to, but I don't want any kicking above your knees. If you fall off my lap or stand up we will start from the beginning so for your sake I strongly suggest you stay on my knee and this will be over in a couple of minutes."
Tears were rolling down his cheeks as he bent forward and eased himself over her thighs. The chair was low enough that it was easy to keep his toes on the floor while his head was near the floor on the other side of the chair. He felt her flip open the towel, exposing his rear cheeks, and knew when she brushed her hand over his butt. He was scared of just how much pain there would be, however he found the feelings of security he used to get when his grandmother spanked him over her knee returned.
He felt the first slap of her hand come across his right butt cheek quickly followed by another one across his left cheek. His response to the continuous slaps now raining down on his bare bum at the rate of forty times a minute was a lot of squirming and the kicking of his legs. Agnes wasn't using her full force to swing her hand; however, that did not mean the slaps didn't sting. James could feel his butt turning from white to pink and then a hot red as she spanked him and he knew things would get much worse. He was not counting the slaps as they were coming in too fast for him to count, but he thought the number must have been around one hundred before they stopped.
He then felt the tap of the wooden paddle three times before she brought it crashing down just above his thighs and continued to smack the same area six times before moving down to his upper thighs. James thought his butt stung, but it was nothing compared to what he felt in his thighs.
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