She stood at the sink rubbing her temple and looking at the car parked in the driveway. More correctly, two tires-the driver’s side-were in the driveway. The other two tires were in the grass having gashed a deep rut in the newly laid sod and crushed two dahlias for good measure. She remembered pulling into the driveway and thinking she was close to the edging. Why hadn’t she looked once she got out? At least straightened it out. Sure the deep tread mark would still be there but she might have passed it off as a minor mistake-a little distraction-instead of the testament that it was.
He was up early getting ready to head out of town for a morning of trout fishing so there was no doubt that he had seen the car while she was still asleep. His truck was beside her car in the driveway-she knew with all his gear in place. She heard him coming up the steps behind her.
“So, you’re up?”
Tried a smile. “Not sure, yet.”
“Didn’t figure to see you this morning, what with the snoring, the bedroom smelling like Tijuana…If you don’t know, you got in around three.”
OK-that answered that question.
“Who were you with?”
“Just Cassie and I-to begin.” That was a good thing. Cassie was a friend of which he approved. He and Cassie’s husband had been in the Army together and the four of them spent a lot of time together when they were all stateside. For now, Cassie was solo as Chet was in Germany. Her soldier was out-working happily in civilian security. “We went down to The Aces” she continued “……then she ran into some people she knew from work, then we moved to Five Star…then to the Legion, I think…or someplace before that”
“You driving all these places?”
“No! Cassie was….”
“Was that any better?”
“I left my car at The Aces…” she continued, “Then, when we got back there…”
…You drove home.”
“I didn’t think I was that drunk.”
“But you don’t remember how many you went to-I know you don’t know how many you had….and I bet you hardly remember the drive home.” Her stomach tumbled a little. There was nothing to explain-he had her dead-to-rights. “OK, look. I have to meet some guys on the stream in an hour-so I gotta run. But let’s be straight-You left here last night to have a good time, which was fine. But the one thing we know-the one thing you knew that you couldn’t do was drive after you started drinking. That was the one thing forbidden to you, right? No matter what you do-that’s the one thing out of bounds. You knew that, right? We had agreed on that.”
“You had an extra $50 that I gave you for cab fare. You still have it?”
“So knowing that you were prohibited from doing it-knowing that you had the money so you didn’t have to do it-neither of these things mattered to you when it came down to it, did they?”
“But it was so late…Cabs are ridiculous…” She stopped herself. “No”, her head hung low and her voice was small.
“So I have to make sure that the next time you put yourself in that situation, that you do the right thing, right?”
“Ok. Here is what I need you to do…”
She listened looking at his shoes. She was on her own until 10 a.m. She should eat, maybe take a walk, clear her head, then shower. At 10:00 he wanted her in the corner. She knew the one-in his office, just off the first floor living room. Her back to his desk and the window behind. She was to stay in the corner for 20 minutes. He suggested she think about what she had done the night before.
Then at 11:00 she was to get back into the corner, but this time to take her pants and underwear down. She should again, use the time to reflect on the last evening and to consider the many points where she might have made a better choice.
“I’m supposed to take Dawn’s class at the gym at noon.”
“That’s not happening.”
She nodded, quickly, not raising her eyes but there was a hint of resistance. If she was six maybe she would have kicked her toe against the carpet. “You like this?” he asked? “Being treated this way?”
“Then remember what it feels like.”
At 1:00, she was to strip down totally. As he said, “not even any toe nail polish” which was kind of a joke between them since she typically didn’t wear any. Actually she was happy for the little bit of private levity. He wanted her in the corner naked until he came home. And during that time she should think about what was in store for her when he did.
He leaned in and kissed her sweetly on the cheek as he headed for the door. “Have a nice day now” he said on his way out. He was able to compartmentalize everything-maybe it was the military training. He was angry earlier-will be later-but now, having laid out the punishment for her he was able to put it all in a box and deal with it later.
That was his gift, not hers. Her head pounded and her stomach fluttered but it was less from last night’s tequila and more from what was to come. She looked at the clock and worked at doing what she could with the couple of hours ahead of her.
She didn’t even think about not doing what he’d ordered. Their marriage was strong and based on trust and honesty. Sure there were things they kept from each other, there were things left judiciously unsaid as in all marriages. But for them-especially in matters of discipline-there was complete transparency. This was not the first time that she had been sentenced to do something that he didn’t monitor.
So at 10:00 sharp she stepped into the corner, placing her phone on the table beside her set to buzz in 20 minutes. She shuffled her feet closer till her toes touched the walls and moved her nose close enough so she could feel the warmth of her own breath bouncing back off the wall in front of her. As instructed, she thought about the evening before.
Her plan had been to meet Cassie for a few drinks. They hadn’t seen each other in a couple of weeks and some laughs and catching up was called for. Cassie was a firecracker and always drew a crowd. Women enjoyed her energy-she was always up for anything; looking for the next laugh or adventure. Men tended to gravitate toward her as much for her bubbling personality as her looks. Thick black curls and dancing brown eyes topped off a body that was 10 or 12 pounds away from being chunky but definitely wasn’t. As it was, she filled out her skin perfectly; stacked and tight in all the right places.
It was that lively sense of adventure that pulled them from The Aces and off to the next bar. But no, she wasn’t going to blame Cassie…she could have left her at any time, especially when Cassie had hooked up with her other friends. But she hadn’t… Her phone buzzed that 20 minutes were up. She stepped back from the corner and rolled her head to loosen a crick in her neck. With forty minutes to take care of the laundry she headed to the basement.
At two minutes to 11:00 she was back in the office. She stepped to the corner and unbuttoned her jean shorts. They were tight so she had to wiggle them down her thighs. Then she put her thumbs in the elastic of her underwear and rolled them down as well. She shuffled into place against the wall. She didn’t mind corner time fully dressed-sometimes the “time-out” worked almost as meditation. She almost didn’t mind corner-time fully naked. Long and lean with wide shoulders from years of swimming and tennis she was confident in her body. She knew how guys looked at her around the pool and, more importantly, how her husband looked at her unclothed. She retained some womanly power in her full nudity.
But she hated standing like this. Like this, she was a little girl again standing in the corner with her bare bum out waiting to be spanked. No power here as her shorts gave in to gravity and slipped into a puddle at her feet. Her underwear stayed mid-thigh.
She leaned her forehead against the wall and for the first time, as the cool air caressed her bare bottom, began to think about the punishment she would surely get when he came home. Spanking, of course, was nothing new to her. Depending upon the severity she could get through, work through or even enjoy a spanking especially if it was followed by rubbing, kissing and sometimes more. In the right frame of mind she could even enjoy the hard ones-looking at them as an athletic event…taking the best that the opponent could bring.
But she knew this would be something different. She could count on one hand the number of times she was flat-out punished in their marriage. They had all been well-deserved but that didn’t change the fact that they hurt. They hurt her outside obviously but inside as well. And it hurt both of them. The old saying “this will hurt me more than it does you” held in Ron’s case. She felt almost as bad for putting her husband through is as she felt for herself. He liked to spank her-for sure. But he didn’t like to hurt her. Today he would hurt her-and she knew she deserved it.
She clenched her bottom a little and her eyes started to sting when she was startled by Lady Gaga’s “Born this Way” coming out of her phone. Cassie. She looked at the phone and knew she wasn’t prohibited from talking in corner time. She put the phone on speaker. “Hey girlfriend”, Cassie sing-songed. “How are you feeling?”
“About how you’d expect. You?”
“Slept like the dead until an hour ago. Hot shower-now I’m fine…within limits. Don’t feed me tequila today.”
Sharon smiled leaning her head against the wall. “I’ll make a note of it.”
“Am I on speaker?” Cassie asked.
“Yeah, it’s just me.”
“Ron isn’t there…?”
“No-he went fishing this morning, remember?”
“Oh right, right……” Her end of the conversation flickered out for a moment. Then, in a lower voice, approaching a whisper “Did you get it this morning?”
“Get it?” Was she talking about sex? “Do you mean, did I get any?”
Cassie laughed-“I wish! No, no did he….beat your ass this morning?”
Oh shit-SHIT! What had she told her last night?
“….Or did he do it last night when you got home?”
“What are you talking about?” she asked with a dead voice.
Cassie related what she had told her the night before. How Ron was getting touchy about how much she drank-how she had to watch herself tonight and not get too drunk or she’d get spanked-one on the worst spankings she had ever gotten was when she had broken the glass on the china cupboard when drunk….on and on. By the time Cassie was finished talking Sherri had both hands clenched at the back of her neck pulling her head against the wall.
“Sherri? You still there?”
“Oh yes.“ she sighed. “I’m here alright.” Not adding, “standing bare-assed in the corner.” “Please Cassie, do me the biggest favor you ever could and forget everything I told you last night.”
“I wouldn’t tell anyone…”
Of course she would-three drinks and things fly out of her mouth like bats out of a cave. Sherri was approaching full panic mode trying to figure how she was going to fix this. She could hear Cassie talking in the background but she was paying her no mind until the phrase…”I’ll talk to Ron…” crackled into the room.
“Wait..! What? You’ll talk to Ron about what?”
“I just don’t think it’s fair…you only were out because of me. Maybe he’ll go easier on you if I explain the situation.”
“Cassie-that is such a horrible idea. You will make it worse, believe me. I did what I did-I’ll deal with it.”
“Come on, we’re all friends here. Ron likes me-I bet you I can get you out of this…”
“Look”, she’d try lying. “There’s nothing to get me out of. What I talked about last night….I was drunk. That’s all. Just babbling. About things we used to do. Used to-not anymore. He’s pissed at me, sure. But he’s fishing and I’m cleaning the house and when he comes home we’re going shopping. He’ll get over it-I’ll go on the wagon for a few days…it’s all good.”
Here phone alarm went off. Her twenty minutes were up. “What’s that?”
“Dryer, Babe. I have to go get the load out before it wrinkles. That would really piss him off.”
Cassie laughed lightly. “OK, girlfriend, if you’re sure you’re OK.”
“It’s all good-I’ll talk to you later.” She stabbed the “END” button quickly-before her friend could say anything more. She was so distracted she almost tripped on the shorts at her feet. “Christ”, she grumbled pulling up her panties “why can’t I just shut my mouth sometimes.”
The time until 1:00 flew. As far as she was concerned, the preliminaries were over. Ron usually spent two or no more than three hours on the stream so she expected him home sooner rather than later so the foreboding that she had felt all morning now kicked into a full blown dread of what was to come.
She was back in the office at ten to one pulling her T-shirt off over her head which she laid over the back of the chair. She wasn’t wearing a bra-didn’t really need one around the house. Her breasts weren’t that large (he called them just right) and they supported themselves-at least around the house-just fine. Down went the shorts again and this time she pushed her underwear down to the floor bending to pick them up and place them on the chair too. She caught sight of herself in the full length mirror that had remained in here from when this office was a bedroom. Nervously she ran her hands down her chest and along her thighs then, turning, across her bottom. She was back in the corner with five minutes to spare actually hoping he would be home soon. As he knew, the waiting was the worst part.
It wasn’t ten minutes later when she heard the back door open and her heart jumped into her throat. She hadn’t even heard the truck. “I’m in here”, she called over her shoulder, her voice breaking just a bit. Of course she was in there-where else would she be?
She listened to the footsteps coming down the hall and pulled herself up straight, kicked her shoulders out a bit and tightened her bottom a tad to present the best “ready” posture she could. She deserved what was coming and would accept her fate. She closed her eyes as the steps came into the office.
“Holy shit, Sherri. What are you doing?”
Cassie! What was she doing here? He eyes were wide open again staring at the wall as she tried to think of something quick. But that something couldn’t involve leaving the corner; Ron could walk in anytime and her not being where she needed to be would be a disaster. Her brain scrambled for something to say but nothing came to mind that could make this seem like something else. She sighed and looked over her shoulder to where Cassie was apparently frozen to the carpet. “What are you doing here?” she asked weakly.
“Ron called me…”
“Yeah-he called and told me to come over. That he was on his way home and wanted to see me. What’s going on?”
“Maybe you better sit down, Cass. Just move my clothes off the chair. How long do we have before he gets here?”
“He didn’t say….I”
She was interrupted by her phone’s ring. Cassie sat on the chair and watched her friend lean over to pick it up not turning at all away from the corner. Sherri looked at the phone-“It’s him. Hello? Yes, she’s here-just walked in. Kind of a surprise, yes…..a little awkward” back over her shoulder, “wouldn’t you say it’s a little awkward, Cass?”
“A little, yes,” said Cassie lightly flicking her eyes anywhere to avoid staring at her friend’s naked back. They had spent enough time in the pool’s locker room to have seen everything there was to see of each other, so Sherri’s nakedness wasn’t an issue-but the context of it surely was. For the first time since she got here a tiny flutter of butterflies flickered in her belly. Sherri hung up the phone.
“He’ll be here in a few minutes”, she said.
“OK. So what’s going on?” she repeated.
As Sherri told her story into the corner, the tiny flutter in Cassie’s belly grew. It was one thing to hear drunken stories about spankings and paddlings for household mistakes or misbehaviors in a crowded bar but another thing altogether to hear about them in the room where a punishment like that seemed imminent. Now Cassie couldn’t avoid glancing then gazing at her friend’s naked bottom. Was this really going to happen in front of her?