Story from Janus 37.
(Reference in the story to 'The Tisdall girl' is an allusion to Sarah Tisdall, a Foreign Office clerk, who was jailed for 6 months in 1983 for passing information on cruise missile deliveries from the US, to the 'Guardian' newspaper. – Alex's note)
Beauty and the Birch
by David Anderson
Not for the first time, eager hands stroked, patted and pinched Jenny's firm young bottom.
And, not for the first time, those hands were her own.
Frankly, she loved her own bottom – and she had every reason to. It was a connoisseur's bottom. A full, soft, creamy bottom without a trace of fat or blemish. The high-cheeked, haughty, naughty bottom of a young girl just become a woman. And this morning, like every morning, fresh from the shower and almost dressed, she lovingly fondled every flowing curve and every graceful swell of that delectable rear.
She cupped each cool, silky buttock in her palms, revelling in the sensual feel of her cheeks. Long, slender, shameless fingers journeyed to the warm, moist valley below and explored her secret centre of pleasure.
Not since her mid-teens had Jenny regarded her bottom as a strictly private place. It was a thing of pride and beauty, to be wantonly flaunted to the yearning gaze of every creature that considered itself to be a man. A bottom for public display in the tightest skirts and even tighter jeans.
She looked back fondly to the days of her first awakening to her bottom's potential as the source of the most exquisite pleasures. It had begun with illicit schoolgirl spankings in the dorm, followed by more intimate, mildly Sapphic, delights.
Now, in the quiet, cosy cocoon of her bedroom, as dawn turned to morning, she caressed her buttocks without guile or modesty, and remembered each slap and pinch. And thrilled to them all.
She had intended to wear a certain pair of knickers. Peter's favourite knickers. The skimpy little red pair. It was to be the biggest day in all her 21 years, and she'd wanted to mark the occasion by clothing her buttocks in the knickers Peter loved best.
But she'd left them... somewhere. Anyway it didn't matter that much; she decided to go without underwear for she much preferred the roughness of coarse denim against her bare, delicate skin. The very notion of her glorious bottom shielded from roving eyes and anonymous fingers by the merest layer of thin, cheek-hugging blue jeans drove her wild with wicked anticipation.
Seams strained, seemingly threatening to rip apart as she tugged the jeans down over her thighs and waggled her shapely arse comfortably into the faded seat. One final wrench of the centre seam between her buttocks, and then into the hall to check her suitcases.
It was coming up to 7 a.m. They were booked on an 8.40 flight to happiness ever after in a Caribbean paradise.
* * *
The tiny alarm built into Armstrong's expensive wristwatch bleeped 7 a.m. He was in the building two hours earlier than usual, and far from his office.
In this tiny, Spartan room, the man who did some of the Ministry's least diplomatic jobs tied the third and final cord around the last five inches of the thick bundle of birch twigs.
He had been out at dawn in a copse near his quiet Surrey cottage, selecting and cutting the thinnest, sappiest twigs nature could supply. Looking now at the finished rod, he began to experience a dark and perverse emotion he thought he had long buried.
It was an exact replica, perfect in every painful detail, of the birch that flourished in countless schools up to and beyond the 1880s. It was more than some bizarre exhibit in some chamber of horrors; it was intended to be a working model.
He had made the birch to the Colonel's precise specifications. Whippy, bud-bearing twigs, 32 inches in length, the sensate effect of which could scarcely be other than cruel.
"I want her thrashed!" the Colonel had roared. "I want her stretched across a desk with her bottom bare, and birched until she screams for mercy!"
Armstrong was sure that the Colonel shared his own predilections. He had, after all, received his education at a traditional public school in the Twenties. The cane swinging twenties. And hadn't he, on many occasions, heard the Colonel recall that the last birch to be used in the school had been kept for posterity on display in a glass case in the assembly hall?
And there lay the true source of Armstrong's fascination. The sure and certain knowledge that exact replicas of this freshly-made birch had whipped the squirming bare bottoms of whole generations of hapless schoolboys.
It was a scene he had once dreamed of; a scene he would very soon enact.
* * *
She had called a cab, never dreaming that they might intercept her call. There was no reason to suspect, as she left the elegant Bayswater flat she rented with her allowance from Daddy, that they would even consider tapping her phone.
Such things didn't happen to mere junior clerical officers, even when the papers they shuffled came in folders marked 'secret'. They certainly didn't occur to Jenny, whose mind, as the taxi sped out of the city was racing with more romantic matters.
It was only when the taxi was flagged down by a motorway patrol car that the first suspicion formed. She glanced at her watch as the cab pulled into the lay-by – ten minutes time and she would join Peter at Heathrow Airport.
But there was no doubt at all in her mind that the madcap adventure had finally crumbled when the two officers and the man in the fawn overcoat ignored the driver and came straight for her!
* * *
Armstrong left the birch on the table; apart from the old office-issue swivel chair he had brought with him, it was the only stick of furniture in the bleak basement room.
He pushed against it a few times, sat on the age-dulled surface, testing to see if it would bear the frantic writhings of the victim who would shortly be bending over it.
Satisfied, Armstrong lowered himself carefully into the rickety swivel chair and lit a cigarette. He still couldn't quite believe his good fortune. Not that he hadn't offered the task to the Colonel, out of deference to the old man's seniority. But the Colonel had sorrowfully declined. Much as the prospect of slavering over the hot bottom of a pretty girl was exciting, he doubted whether his pacemaker's guarantee would apply in such unusual circumstances.
* * *
One of the pigs had groped her arse. She'd felt it quite plainly when they hauled her out of the car.
She'd lost her balance and tripped on a paving slab. Willing hands had steadied her, and one of them had helped himself to a generous portion of buttock. Those damn tight jeans – they were just too inviting.
She felt none of her usual pleasure in having her bottom mauled by rough male hands. She was just terrified. She knew one thing; these men were not common or garden police officers.
At first, she'd sat passively between the two uniformed men. After all, what was the worst that could happen to her? Six months, and out in four? If the Tisdall girl could do it, she certainly could. And, in a perverse sort of way, she rather liked the idea of being a martyr for a political cause. The truth was entirely less honourable, but she wouldn't say a word about that; and she was sure Peter had even more to gain by granting her the status of public heroine in his newspaper column.
All that had changed when the car doubled back towards London. The last thing she remembered noticing was the fact that, unlike any other police car she had ever seen, this one had dark purple-tinted windows, and a similar screen behind the driver's compartment, through which it was impossible to recognise any landmarks.
Where in the world have they brought me? This was uppermost in her jumbled thoughts as she was dragged up some stone steps. Is this a police station? as they frogmarched her briskly down an echoing corridor. Please God... as she was shoved brusquely into an elevator... let it be a simple, ordinary police station... as the lift began to descend.
* * *
It was doubtful if Jenny, had she seen him, would have recognised the Colonel. He was a creature of the shadows. The man who ran the Ministry's internal security at the highest level.
He dished out the dirty jobs. Jobs that most of the Ministry, and certainly the general public, never got to hear about. Armstrong jobs.
Armstrong reached inside his jacket as he heard footsteps and a girl's voice raised in protest in the corridor outside. Yes, the evidence was all there. He rubbed the soft, flimsy material between his fingers, feeling a sudden surge of sexual arousal at the thought of their daily intimacy with the girl.
The door was kicked open by the man in the fawn overcoat. Another of Jenny's captors followed, pushing the frightened, struggling girl before him. Armstrong stared at her and was utterly entranced by the girl's loveliness.
She held herself with the assurance of a woman who knew she was beautiful; the cool hauteur of the young career woman. But behind it all he saw the spoiled little child, the child used to getting her own way. Now she was a little girl lost, little girl very frightened.
For a second she thought she recognised him; had she, perhaps, caught a fleeting glimpse of him at the office? But no, she'd have surely remembered. The cynical twist of the tight mouth, eyes of the coldest blue, a body, enhanced by the narrow cord slacks and the brown leather jacket, that was firm, uncompromising muscle. This was a man few women would find easy to forget.
She let loose with a barrage of indignant complaints, but he was already dismissing his two apes, and ordering the door to be locked from the outside.
The two of them stood alone at last in the windowless room. Walls of whitewashed brick disappeared into shadows cast by one single naked light-bulb.
She trembled as the cold seeped through the thin jeans and skimpy cotton blouse. By now, she should have been jetting sunwards with Peter.
"Who are you?"
"Let's pretend I'm your Headmaster. And you have been summoned for punishment."
"But I haven't done –"
"I should tell you that since the Sarah Tisdall affair, we've been particularly vigilant in the matter of Cabinet Office leaks. A newspaper editor said at the time that the girl's arrest would put a paper shredder into every editor's office. Well that remark put one of our chaps in every newspaper office too."
"I want to phone Daddy."
"We've already spoken to him. Now shut up and listen. Two days ago a highly classified document went missing from a department in Whitehall – Your department, Miss Chalmers. Last night it turned up again. In the briefcase of a Fleet Street foreign affairs editor."
"You searched Peter's case?"
"And guess what else we found!" He reached inside his jacket and, with all the flair of a stage magician, he produced an all-too-familiar pair of red knickers. "Exhibit A for the prosecution, I think." he said smoothly
She made one last desperate attempt. "They-They're not mine."
"Oh come now, Miss Chalmers. You are known to be a very affectionate girl. Is there a man in your department who wouldn't recognise these knickers? One chap in particular even recognised this little cigarette burn right here where it fits your pretty little bum. Apparently, you were draped over his lap one evening when a spot of hot ash happened to land. Happily, I understand, he was able to prevent any possibility of immolation by the rapid application of a slipper."
She blushed scarlet. "I-I want to see Peter."
"He's tied up with a colleague of mine at the moment. He won't want any more to do with leaked documents in the future. Or with you for that matter."
"That's a lie!" She was close to tears.
"And that, Jenny Chalmers, is effectively a confession. Truth is, you have been used. You really think he was waiting for you at the airport? Why should he? He's a married man, Jenny. You'd given him what he wanted. I mean the document, of course, but I shouldn't disregard your undoubted physical charms."
After this there was nothing left. She crumbled completely and fell back on pitiful tears. And these didn't mollify Armstrong in the least. Rather they served to engage his desires.
"Now, Miss Chalmers, I'm going to get what I want... which is you bending over that table with your pants down!"
"Whaaaaaaat?" she shrieked in horror.
He moved away from the table and, for the first time, she saw what lay upon it.
"Christ, you're not going to use that thing on me, are you? You can't!" she half gasped, half shrieked.
"Would you rather spend the next ten years in Holloway Prison?"
"I suppose you expected 6 months like the Tisdall girl. This government has been embarrassed once too often by moles like you. They are prepared to charge you with a far more serious offence than merely passing on classified information."
Armstrong was lying, of course. No Court in the land would consider Jenny's offence treasonable, and most would let her off with a fine. However the Colonel had decided that an example needed to be made of this girl, and that rumours of unsubstantiated drastic punishment might circulate around the rest of the Department making any other would-be mole think twice.
Given time, Jenny might have reasoned this out for herself. But Armstrong was too clever to give her that kind of breathing space.
"It will be over and done with in minutes, Jenny," he insisted. "Come on now, be a sensible girl. Drop those pants and get yourself across that table!"
For a moment, he feared she wasn't going to fall for it. But she must have been too upset to think straight. For she turned away, affording him a spectacular view of her provocative bottom. And sobbing softly, she lowered her hands and with numb, fumbling fingers, began to unzip her jeans.
* * *
She was yelling fit to burst by the time the eighth stroke had lashed with wicked force into the centre of her naked, defenceless buttocks.
She was being flogged. There was no other word for it. No beating she had ever suffered as a schoolgirl could be remotely compared to the thrashing she was enduring now.
Through the haze of pain, and the blur of her copious tears, she dimly remembered the routine of her spankings and canings at school. The hardest strokes had just seemed to bounce off her bottom. Such a firm, resilient bottom that seemed to absorb the severest punishment and then come back for more. Even that never to be forgotten 12 stroke caning she received at the age of 18 on her bare bottom, laid on with full blooded force by her Headmistress, had left her bottom scorched and welted, yet able to take a good hot slippering two evenings later with little more than the usual discomfort.
But the pain that was tearing into her buttocks now, this was more terrible than anything she had ever experienced or imagined. The ninth stroke met her arse with a force that nearly lifted her clean over the table.
And she had congratulated herself on her cleverness! She bit deeply into her wrist as the birch lashed into the middle of her upturned buttocks.
How clever she was to outsmart the Whitehall ferrets!
Then – the flaring agony as the twigs splayed across her wide, tightly-stretched bottom cheeks and bit deeply into the soft flesh, scorching it to Hades!
Her whole body bucked an inch or more above the table as pure pain lanced through her, then collapsed with a bone-jarring thump against the unyielding mahogany surface. The breath was driven out of her in great, wracking sobs. How much more could she endure?
She lay there, writhing like a worm on a fish-hook, fighting to control her frantically thrashing legs. Not realising that every lascivious twitch of her wriggling buttocks inflamed Armstrong to new heights of birching frenzy.
For Armstrong, it was as if the outside world no longer existed. This was the only reality. The shapely, writhing, squirming female bottom to be flogged and flogged until the birch disintegrated.
This is real, he kept telling himself. He saluted his heroes, those stern schoolmasters of old, who had wielded the birch with zeal. Yet none of them, he was triumphantly sure, had ever whipped so voluptuous a bottom as this!
Swinging the heavy bunch of birch twigs as far back over his right shoulder as he could reach, he allowed the convulsive movements of Jenny's fiery bottom to subside slightly before sweeping the birch down and under to lash the very undercurve of her arse with a sharp series of whipping thwacks.
The girl's anguished howls were the purest music. Her ravaged buttocks and thighs the most exquisite tapestry. So erotic in their churning, scarlet agony. Was that a dozen? Who cared! The whipping lust was on him now and he flogged those blazing, fierily stinging cheeks with renewed vigour.
The birch rods fanned as they sang through the air, and splayed to cover the widest expanse of bottom at the moment of impact; each thin, sharp twig clawing into its own fleshy prize.
As for the state of Jenny's poor bottom, none of her lovers would have recognised it now. The rich creaminess was an ugly mass of purple, red and violet blotches. The smooth, graceful curves were cruelly ridged. The silky texture was pitted and scored with countless tiny welts. The cheeks looked as if they had been attacked with a million tiny needles, or worse.
AS swollen and livid as it was, her bottom was even more appealing to Armstrong. This was his handiwork, and he delighted in it. Was that twenty strokes she'd had? Damn it the girl could take double that. She had no choice.
Later, she was taken up in the elevator to the car that had brought her. Considerately, they allowed her to lie face down, her trousers still round her ankles, on the back seat before driving her to a private clinic where her harshly-used bottom would receive treatment of a more soothing kind.
* * *
The Colonel switched off the TV monitor, pocketed the tape cassette, and went through to join Armstrong in an interrogation room. They were far below the corridors of power in the building where Jenny had worked.
"Good view, Sir?"
"Saw the lot, old boy. Spectacular isn't the word. Damn fine show! You fairly flailed that little chit's rump!"
"What happens to her now, Sir?"
"Out of the country. We won't fire her – too dangerous. We've fixed her up in a British Embassy in some far off outpost."
Armstrong smiled. "The sort of place where news-hounds fear to tread?"
"Exactly. And the kind of place where they lop off so many hands and feet that no one is going to raise an eyebrow about a well whipped bottom – and she is well aware of that!"
Armstrong finished wrapping up what was left of the birch. He heard the Colonel cough behind him, an odd, guilty little sound.
"I've had my eye on this girl in the Far East section."
For a moment their eyes met and an unspoken message passed between them. Armstrong finished the Colonel's sentence. "Sally Evans."
"That's her, Armstrong. Bright girl. Should do well if she can be trained out of cheeking her superiors and broadcasting her liberal opinions."
Armstrong nodded. "I'll be down at my cottage this weekend, Sir. I've a few birch trees that need pruning."
This story was scanned and prepared by Alex Birch.