Story from Februs 28.
by James Hoffmann
'I HAVE ONE EIGHTY-FIVE... any further?' The auctioneer, surveying the hall over half-moon spectacles, glanced swiftly right and left. On the floor, people were either motionless, or avoided his gaze. Watching from her position near the auctioneer's podium, Charlotte prayed for the bids to continue. None were forthcoming.
'A fine house, ladies and gentlemen? Do I have one eighty-six?' Silence, stillness. The auctioneer knew when to throw in the towel. 'I regret that since the bid is below the reserve price, Beadle Grange is withdrawn from sale. Our next lot, item seven in your catalogues...'
'Oh God,' Charlotte muttered, gnawing fear of failure becoming reality. Stiffly, she walked from the hall, holding her head up. It seemed all eyes were on her, knowing and accusing. In the anteroom, a red-faced, tweed-suited man and his galleon-sized, chintz-bedecked wife awaited her. Charlotte's clients, Mr. and Mrs. Collins, to whom she had personally guaranteed a sale price of two hundred and fifty thousand, minimum. They did not look happy.
'I want a word with you, young lady,' said Mr. Collins, stepping towards her. Charlotte raised her hands placatingly.
'Mr. Collins, I know this is a disappointment...'
'I'm not bloody disappointed, girl, I'm furious,' her client replied, the opening gambit of a three minute monologue detailing the shortcomings of Charlotte, her employers, the auctioneer, and the state of the entire housing market, accompanied all the while by clucks from his disapproving wife. 'And,' he concluded, 'To add insult to injury, I've to pay the auctioneer for the privilege of not selling my house. Since you promised me a buyer, you can tell your boss to expect the bill herself. Better still, I'll tell her.'
With that he left, Mrs Collins in full sail behind him. Reaching the double doors leading to the street, the matronly woman glanced back at Charlotte, looked the girl up and down disdainfully, sniffed, and was gone.
'And there goes my job,' Charlotte told herself sadly.
* * *
County Estates was a small and exclusive property agency run from a converted terraced cottage in Charlotte's home village. She had been working there for five months and, to date, it had not been a success. This latest disaster, she knew, could well mean the end of her short career.
After parking her car in the village square, Charlotte contemplated calling it a day and consoling herself with a few brandies. But there was paperwork still to be done and, despite feeling that she would be labouring in a lost cause, she decided that she was not about to quit of her own volition.
It being after seven o'clock, the offices were closed. Letting herself in by the back door, Charlotte stood silently for some moments, listening for any activity upstairs where Karen Palmer, the proprietor, had her office. Karen was the last person Charlotte wanted to see.
The building, however, seemed empty and Charlotte went through to the main office where she and two other junior agents had their desks.
On her blotter a pile of papers awaited her attention, while her VDU was arrayed with stick-on notes, reminding her of calls to be made. The prospect of talking to customers made Charlotte's heart sink. In her time at the agency, almost all of her clients had deserted County Estates for one rival company or another, and Charlotte had been warned by Karen, more than once, to improve her sales record. The loss of the Collins' and the hefty commission the sale would have brought would not be easy to explain.
Maybe, she thought, I really am in the wrong business. Maybe I just don't have what it takers. She shuffled papers on her desk, looking at but not seeing words, figures, photographs of houses. Deep in a gloom of self-doubt.
'You're back early, aren't you?' Karen said from the doorway. Startled, Charlotte jumped in her chair and looked up, wide-eyed and open-mouthed. Seeing Karen, realizing that she would not have time to think up excuses for the evening's debacle, she wished she had gone drinking after all.
'How did it go?' asked Karen, taking a few steps into the room. Lying, Charlotte knew, would be pointless.
'There was no sale,' she admitted weakly. 'It didn't reach the reserve.'
'Yes, I know,' said Karen with ominous coolness. 'I've already spoken to Mr. Collins.' Expecting fire and brimstone, Charlotte was surprised when Karen turned and walked slowly out of the office. Is that it? she wondered. Am I off the hook?
'Follow me, Charlotte,' Karen called from the hallway.
Smiling inwardly, Karen made her way up to her office. She had been waiting for this, watching Charlotte's muddled progress towards failure, knowing that one day she could step in to lend a firm, guiding hand. The wait had been longer than anticipated, a delicious torture of watching and waiting, expecting the hour.
Now that the time had finally come, Karen felt superbly calm, secure in the knowledge that she could manipulate the situation as she wished. In her assessment, Charlotte was malleable, young, still sufficiently inexperienced to be turned to Karen's will. Charlotte affected sophistication, but Karen had seen through this from the first, had noted the vein of gaucheness, insecurity, that she now intended to mine.
What most interested Karen was her estimation of Charlotte as sensually naive. She knew Charlotte had a live-in boyfriend, did not doubt that he took full advantage of her lithe young body, but there was so much more to pleasure than the base copulation in which she imagined Charlotte and her lover indulged. There were so many deeper, darker enjoyments that Karen could teach this girl.
* * *
Standing to the side of her office door, Karen watched Charlotte climbing the stairs. Her face was long, as if expecting the worst, Karen noted with glee. Tilting her head, she indicated Charlotte should enter the room. Following on her heel, Karen admired the girl's wide shoulders, her slim waist and wonderfully full, round bottom. The business suit that Charlotte wore did full justice to her figure, while her heels and stockings highlighted the smooth lines of athletic calves.
Karen seated herself at her desk, but did not invite Charlotte to take a chair. Stern faced, Karen surveyed Charlotte for long moments, deliberately letting tension build. Charlotte looked distinctly uncomfortable, her pretty face clouded and, Karen suspected, tears were imminent, which perfectly suited her intentions.
'I won't heat about the bush,' Karen said curtly. 'Tonight's fiasco is the last straw, Charlotte. I'm going to terminate your employment.'
'Oh no, please don't fire me, Miss Palmer,' Charlotte implored the older woman through trembling lips. I've had some bad luck...'
'Bad luck!' scoffed Karen. 'You're a disaster area, girl.' Charlotte babbled on, words pouring out in excited desperation. Her heart was set on a career in property, things would improve, there was so much to learn, she only needed time. Karen listened impassively, giving the girl rope.
'I need this job,' Charlotte said pathetically, eyes now glistening with burgeoning tears. She fell silent, her last card on the table.
'If you want to keep this job,' Karen said slowly, pointedly, 'You will have to do exactly as I tell you.'
Charlotte stared, seeing in Karen's eyes and slight, sly smile that she was not about to make a proposition to be found in a business manual. Her tone of voice, too, was highly suggestive and Charlotte realized that escape from unemployment was not impossible. She had suspected that Karen was attracted to women: the furtive looks, often noticed, betrayed her tastes, while her manner was patently that of a dominant personality.
Karen would have been surprised to learn that these were tastes that Charlotte herself found intriguing, seductive, tastes Charlotte had fantasized about for some weeks. She had conjured images of this darkly attractive, dominant woman while making love with her boyfriend, spicing her reactions to his attentions with dreams of arousal at Karen's hands. The ideas, the woman herself, were now real, immediate, and she sensed sudden heat in her body, a flush of desire.
Thoughts of her sacking dwindled into insignificance as her mind turned to the promise of forbidden adventure. She straightened herself, drawing her shoulders back, feeling this action thrust her breasts outwards so they tightened against her suit. Beneath her double-breasted jacket she wore only a stretch-lace bodyshaper, a flimsy covering that heightened rather than diminished the chafing of her nipples against linen.
'What should I do?' she asked quietly, hoping her voice still sounded nervous, that it did not betray the excitement radiating from her belly and spreading throughout her body.
Karen immediately realized, hearing these words, that Charlotte was submitting herself, knowing where Karen's desires lay. For a moment she endured a sense of loss, wondering if the girl had, after all, experienced another woman's touch. She felt suddenly disappointed, almost angry that she would not be the first to enjoy her this way.
Studying Charlotte, watching her sweet face and detecting the unmistakeable glint of dawning lust in her eye, Karen then sensed she was wrong. Charlotte was innocent, but eager. She knew this with uncanny certainty, disappointment evaporating as quickly as it had come. The girl was lovely and willing, and Karen watched a tentative half-smile form on her soft lips, felt her heart beat with accelerated vigour as the pink tip of Charlotte's tongue rail over their glossy redness, moist and enticing.
'I think,' she said hoarsely, surprised to find her own mouth had become parched, managing only with difficulty to maintain her stern tone, 'That you should be taught discipline. I think that is what is missing in you, Charlotte.'
'Yes, Miss Palmer,' Charlotte agreed softly, entering into the game. Her words, the way she spoke, were delightful to Karen, confirming that there had been no mistake in her appraisal.
'So we should begin,' Karen said more firmly, 'With a punishment for the business you have lost through your slipshod attitude. Don't you agree?'
'Yes, Miss Palmer,' Charlotte echoed. The girl was very slightly trembling, but now because of excitement rather than fear of dismissal.
'Fetch that stool, over there,' said Karen. There were two plush armchairs on the far side of the room, either side of a coffee table. Between them was a rectangular footstool, similarly upholstered. Charlotte fetched it and, on Karen's instruction, placed it close to the desk's edge. Karen was standing now, she had moved behind Charlotte to watch the girl, without herself being seen.
'Good,' she said shortly. Now that she was sure of the understanding between them, Karen assumed a familiar, favourite role. She would be harsh and acid-tongued with Charlotte, she would punish and humiliate her, and she would do so with intense affection.
Charlotte had to raise her skirt in order to comply with Karen's instruction to kneel on the stool. A part of her mind could not believe she was going through with this, but it was a small voice of dissent, diminishing rapidly as warmth and tremulous excitement continued to intensify within her. She fell exhilarated, yet there was also an edge of uncertainty, and she wondered just how far Karen might go, how far she herself was capable of going.
Obediently, she knelt and deliberately pushed her proud rump towards her new mistress. At Karen's behest, she leant forward onto the desk, feeling her suit pull tight about her curves.
Her breasts caught the desk edge and she sucked in a sharp breath, astonished at how sensitive her flesh had become in such a short time.
'Arch your back,' said Karen. 'I want your buttocks up high.' Again Charlotte obeyed, contriving to wriggle her hips so that her full globes moved suggestively. The heat in her was now concentrated between her legs, she was becoming aroused there, wondered if the burning was evident to her watching mistress.
Karen laid her hands on Charlotte's waist, and the girl gave a tiny gasp in response to this first gentle touch. The hands gripped tighter, moved now over hips and flanks, smoothing down firm thighs and the bunched skirt. Charlotte felt Karen's fingertips trailing lightly over her stocking, and then the woman was gathering the hem of the skirt and slowly, slowly raising it to reveal Charlotte's lithe legs, slim but strong. Cool air met bare skin as the skirt was lifted above Charlotte's elasticated stocking-tops.
Leaving the skirt thus, rucked at the join of thigh and buttock, Karen returned her hands to Charlotte's waist and again caressed downwards. She moulded Charlotte's tight bottom, delighting in the girl's taut fleshiness, and Charlotte felt a tremor of shameful desire, a need to be touched in a crude and blatantly sexual manner.
Karen had no intention of giving Charlotte such base gratification. Lifting her hands from the roundness of Charlotte's arse, she let them fall, palms flat, then repeated the exercise, over and over. These smacks, light, no more powerful than the weight of Karen's hands, were pleasant and made Charlotte's inner heat become more intense, without themselves creating heat. Such gentleness was not to last. Sliding her fingers into Charlotte's hair, Karen tugged her head back, her other hand gripping one cheek with sufficient force for Charlotte to feel fingernails digging into her flesh.
'Well, are you ready to be punished girl?' demanded Karen.
'Yes,' whispered Charlotte, scarcely capable of breathing, almost paralysed by her new-found lust for debasement. She felt the hand on her arse release its grip and, a moment later, a resounding smack landed on her sensitized bottom, the stinging shock of it only slightly dissipated by the material of her skirt. The tension in her belly knotted tighter, a low moan escaping her lips.
A second blow fell on her other cheek, and then Karen began a fearsome assault on the well-presented bottom, her hand cracking down onto springy flesh again and again. She thrilled at the girl's cries, the arching back and twisting hips as she contorted herself to meet rather than avoid the hard slaps. Karen placed over a dozen blows on each buttock, her own excitement mounting as she chastised the girl and gave free rein to her genuine annoyance at Charlotte's incompetence.
'There,' she panted at last, forcing herself to pause before the conflicting emotions of anger and desire contrived to make her lose her own composure and self-control. 'That should be enough to warm you up, you little bitch.' Still holding a handful of Charlotte's hair, she tugged again, hard.
'Stand up girl,' she said harshly. Charlotte obeyed and faced her employer, a hot flush on her face and her hands cupping her somewhat sore buttocks. 'Take off your suit, Charlotte, then resume your position.'
'You mean there's more, Miss Palmer?' asked the girl uncertainly. She had enjoyed the spanking, the mild pain and the novelty had been exciting, very exciting, but she was not sure if she dared to continue.
'I've hardly started your punishment,' said Karen contemptuously. Poor fool, she thought, she wants me to hold her and kiss her, soothe her with girliness. So much to learn. 'Hurry up,' she snapped. 'The longer I wait the worse it will be.'
After the briefest hesitation, Charlotte slowly unbuttoned her jacket. Draping it over the desk, her full breasts moved beneath the translucent lace and Karen felt a stab of wanting in her loins at the sight of hard, dark peaks. The skirt followed and Karen surveyed the girl's lovely form, the pale, naked skin between stockings and high-cut body. At the join of her legs, the shimmer of her glossy delta was apparent, and Karen had to restrain the urge to reach out and cup the prominent mound.
Kneeling once again, breathing shallowly, Charlotte presented her nude buttocks to her mistress, her garment having ridden into her deep cleft. The milky skin had a pleasing pink tinge from her initial spanking, and Karen gently smoothed her hands over the delicious flesh, feeling radiant warmth.
'Such a naughty, wicked girl,' she murmured. 'I shall really have to be terribly severe with you.' Charlotte's little whimper of trepidation turned to a yelp of pain as Karen's cruel hand smacked down hard onto her buttock. The flesh leapt and rippled delightfully under the impact, and a deeper hue of red instantly appeared in the shape of Karen's hand.
Fired by this sight, Karen gave equal treatment to the other cheek. She slapped each globe systematically, causing the redness to spread and overlap. Moving outwards, the smacks landed on haunches, flanks and upper thighs, each blow rewarded by an anguished squeal from the tormented girl. Charlotte was again writhing, at first to meet the shockingly arousing punishment but, as her pain and discomfort grew, to avoid the slaps.
'Hold still, you little slut,' said Karen. She had paused in the beating, was waiting for the sting in her hand to subside before resuming. Sweat trickled between her swollen breasts, she fell the aching hardness of her teats and, most acutely of all, the insistent throb in her sex. The scent of arousal that filled her nostrils, however, was not her own.
Charlotte was shamelessly wet, becoming desperate for a release to the raging sensations that wracked her body. Her bottom burned, scorched by the severity of Karen's slaps, and this scarlet heat had spread to every part of her. She felt sure that Karen could smell her animal arousal, wished and willed her mistress to hold her heavy breasts, to unfasten the scrap of material between her legs and lick her, or plunge fingers into her wanting flesh. Yet she dared not ask for this, frightened of what reaction she might provoke and also inhibited by her own inexperience.
Then came the touch she craved, Karen's fingertips delving into the deep valley between her buttocks. She gasped, moaned, and heard the poppers of her undergarment being unfastened. Karen peeled the sticky fabric from Charlotte's wetness, and cool air wafted over her heat. A joyous shame flooded Charlotte's mind as she realized that her most secret places, shaven bare to the taste of her boyfriend, were now crudely exhibited to her mistress.
'Wicked girl,' repeated Karen, admiring the smooth lips and pouting bottom-mouth before her. 'You do this to please your man?'
'Yes,' admitted Charlotte.
'So he thinks you're a slut too, doesn't he? Lazy and incompetent, and also little better than a whore, aren't you?'
'Yes, Miss Palmer,' Charlotte agreed, squirming with the pleasure of her humiliation.
'I'll have to punish you for this dreadful behaviour. Rest your shoulders on the desk... put your hands on your bottom.' The girl complied warily and heard a desk drawer open and close by her prone head. 'Good,' continued Karen, 'Now hold yourself open.'
'Oh, no, please...' Charlotte began, not wishing to show herself in such degrading fashion.
'Do as I say!' demanded Karen. Reluctantly Charlotte obeyed, fear of Karen's wrath outweighing her shame.
The treasures in Charlotte's valley were now blatantly exposed, and she felt her fear melt into desire again as Karen trailed a fingertip teasingly close to her open sex, the place that needed so little attention to bring her the release she craved. The finger was replaced by something cold, flat and hard and Charlotte trembled expectantly, correctly guessing that the tool of her impending torment was Karen's heavy, old-fashioned wooden ruler.
The first blow landed on the tight-stretched skin of her inner check, and a sharp cry escaped her as the pain seared her tenderness. Another blow, then another, and she was afire, gulping air and heaving her belly in her efforts to endure the punishment. A fourth stinging crack, dangerously close to her outrageously swollen inner lips, brought hot tears to her eyes and she moved a hand to try and cup her roiling sex.
'Don't you dare!' Karen snapped, wrenching Charlotte's hand away and laying a stroke parallel to the full length of her sex for her trouble. 'Take your beating, you little whore, take the pain you deserve for being such a useless, cheap slut.'
Sobbing, moaning, Charlotte endured lash upon merciless lash. Karen gloated over the girl's obscenely reddened and pouting flesh, rippling and heaving under each impact, relishing the cruel rhythms of the beating. The swish of the ruler, the rifle-crack as its unrelenting hardness met the elasticity of fiery young skin, the anguished sounds of the tortured girl, all were music to her ears.
As the unremitting beating continued, Charlotte's cries became transformed into guttural grunts. The lustful creature within her was uncoiling, taking full possession of her. What had been near-unbearable pain changed to intensely erotic stimulus, and she abandoned herself, crushing her swollen breasts to the desk, clawing herself open, ever wider, thrusting outwards like a beast welcoming the rut.
Karen saw Charlotte's face contort, saw her eyelids flutter and her mouth fall slack, and knew how close she was to the edge of endurance. Taking pity at last, deciding that the girl had done well, there was one last thing to be done before Charlotte was allowed her reward. Lessening the intensity of the beating, but without breaking the tempo of her blows, Karen reached her hand beneath Charlotte's body and caressed the soft pout of her belly.
'You're so close, aren't you darling?' she whispered. 'It would be so easy to give you what you need. But first, thank me for my kindness, beg me to allow you to have further lessons.'
'Thank you, Miss Palmer,' gasped Charlotte unhesitatingly, for she knew that she could not bear to have her punishment end without having experienced her climactic moment. She knew also that she wanted to experience this delicious, perverse torture again. 'Finish me, please, and please be my teacher again.'
Karen smiled, victorious, and began to lay the strokes harder. Only the tip of the ruler struck Charlotte's flesh now, at the very edge of her plump, smooth labia. She twitched minutely with each blow, felt them travel higher, gradually approaching her second entrance. Anticipating the strokes to come, her bottom-mouth began to throb and, to her astonished delight, her sex-flesh also began to pulse, an accelerating beat of arousal that she recognized as irreversible. With tortuous slowness, Karen's smacks approached the crinkled ring until, with impeccable timing, her last savage blow landed square across Karen's arsehole.
With a scream of barely tolerable pleasure-pain, Charlotte crashed into orgasm. Crying, moaning, her body shaking and bucking, fingers clutching convulsively at her bottom, her climax ravaged her body with ferocious intensity, seeming to take her to the very edge of sanity as her consciousness splintered into a thousand bright shards.
Having resumed her seat, Karen watched the slumped and drained girl gradually recover, and raise her flushed, damp body from the desk. Quietly, she instructed Charlotte to dress and noticed, to her satisfaction, that her fingers still trembled slightly as she buttoned her jacket.
'You can go now, Charlotte,' she said off-handedly. 'I'll talk to you in the morning.'
'Yes, of course,' replied Charlotte, subdued. At the door, she turned back to her employer.
'Yes?' What now, wondered Karen. Surely not insolence so soon after a punishment?
'I... I was thinking,' ventured Charlotte. 'I thought, I've such a lot to learn and – well, I'm alone at home this week. Perhaps we could continue my lessons there...?'