The new kitchen-maid stepped uncertainly into the nursery parlour. She was small and delicately pretty with dark-brown hair pinned back under her cap. The girl's daintiness made Betsy feel huge and positively ungainly by comparison.Poor Jamie, poor Clara, and poor Betsy too. It's going to be a long afternoon for everyone.
"Yes, girl?" Jamie demanded.
"Cook sent me to find his lordship, sir, and ask for -" the girl blinked anxiously "- for a taste of the cane, sir."
"Well then, why are you here?"
The girl hung her head and stared, somewhat dolefully, at the floor. "It took ages to find his lordship, sir. You see, sir -" she peeked up at Jamie, her voice little more than a timid whisper, " - I got lost..."
"For God's sake, girl, I did not ask for your entire life story!" Jamie snapped impatiently. "Get to the point."
The kitchen-maid quailed a little at his outburst. "Well, when I found his lordship, he was, he was - " a blush touched the girl's pale cheeks "- he was busy." She swallowed hard as if remembering something awful. "He said that I should come here and ask you to - to - "
Betsy understood what had happened. It was something of a ritual for the new girls, and she remembered her own introduction to the vastness and complexity of the hall only too well. Stumbling, lost from corridor to unknown stairwell, finally reaching her goal only to be sent off somewhere else in search of punishment, she had been in tears long before the first stroke had been applied. All the same, looking at this pretty little morsel, she was surprised that Lord Alex had sent her on. The master must have been occupied with something really interesting, Betsy mused, to have passed up such a dainty little treat.
"Very well, girl, I am busy too - but I expect I can find the time to thrash you. Betsy, you won't mind if your tawsing is delayed a little longer?"
Betsy blinked back at him in astonishment. "N-no, sir."
"Good. Then everyone is happy?"
There was a groan from Amelia and a slightly panicked gasp from Clara, which suggested that the blonde girl's coin might be starting to slip. Betsy peeked at the little kitchen-maid, who had gone very pale, and then back to her master, who threw the tawse down onto the chaise longue where it landed with a sickening thump.
"I asked if everyone was happy?" Jamie demanded, more forcefully.
There was a ragged, unconvincing, chorus of "Yes, sir."
The young man smiled. "Jolly good," he said with a satisfied air. "Betsy, get that bloody sack off the wench, will you...and you, girl, what is your name?"
"Emma, sir," the girl said softly, "Emma Swift."
Betsy hurried to help the girl take off her functional grey kitchen-maid's uniform. Beneath, her underclothing was all white, except for soft black woollen stockings. Her undergarments were plain but clean, and obviously new. She wore a thin cotton camisole beneath her corset, which acted as a halter for her breasts. The corset made a trim waist even trimmer. The girl blushed furiously, but did not protest as she was undressed. She kept glancing fearfully towards Amelia.
"Ah, I see you find Miss Amelia's condition interesting, eh, girl?" Jamie had obviously noticed her fascination.
"Oh no, sir. I'm sorry, sir. I didn't mean to -"
"Not at all. Don't be sorry. Come over and have a look, if you are interested."
Emma peeked up at Betsy, as if looking for help. The nursery-maid was neither willing nor able to supply it, and did not meet her gaze.
"Come on!" The note of command in Jamie's voice was more obvious now, and Emma walked across to his side.
"It looks a bit hot, does it not?"
Betsy could see most of the bottom in question as Emma stood to one side of Amelia, and Jamie the other. The stripes that the tawse had left were still glowing. Jamie put his hand on Amelia's left buttock and squeezed, drawing a gasp of pain from her.
"It feels warm too. I tell you what, Emma, why don't you kneel down? Steady, Amelia. Drop that coin again and I'll skin you! Right, Emma, shuffle a bit closer; now you can see what you were so fascinated by. Get a good look, girl."
His hand closed on the back of the young maid's neck, forcing her face inches from Amelia's quivering bottom, then lifted the hem of Amelia's smock with his other hand.
"Feel for yourself how hot it is. Put your face against her bottom - cheek to cheek, as they say. Come on, you nosy little chit, do as I say!"
The maid did as she was told with palpable reluctance. Another pained whimper escaped Amelia's lips as Emma laid her cheek against the surface of the girl's well-tawsed bottom. Jamie made her stay there for a minute, pressing her face against the hot bottom-flesh, obviously enjoying the tableau.
In truth, it was a pretty sight - at least Betsy found it so. Amelia stood, her whole body quivering as she strained to hold the coin against the wall, arms bound behind her. The girl's shapely legs were set off by her sheer white stockings and her curvaceous figure was barely veiled by the thin little smock. Emma knelt, the picture of imperilled innocence, in her white corset and drawers. Her flawless little cheek was just touched by a blush, almost as if the fiery glow of Amelia's bottom might be contagious. Even so, the girl's face seemed pale against the rosy surface of Amelia's bottom. Betsy could have stood and watched the scene all day. Longer, so long as it postponed her own date with the tawse.
Jamie appeared to find the picture pleasant too, for he stood and contemplated the scene for several long minutes, before taking a deep breath. "Now, Betsy, if you can persuade young Emma to stop nuzzling Amelia's arse, I would like you to help in bending her over, palms down on the nursing chair. You know the drill!"
Betsy, naturally, knew the drill extremely well. There was a line in the pattern of the carpet some two feet from the low seat of the armless nursing chair. Taking Emma's bare arm firmly, she guided the girl over. The kitchen-maid's skin was warm and silky under her hand and she could feel the girl tremble slightly as she steadied her.
"Toes behind that line, please."
The girl glanced sideways at Betsy's breasts. Betsy pinched Emma's arm crossly in response.
"Come along, place your hands on the seat," she insisted gruffly.
Emma's corset groaned a little in complaint as she bent, but it was neither so long or so tightly laced as Betsy's, and she got down without difficulty. The nursing chair was low, and Emma's cotton-clad bottom was now the highest part of her. Betsy reached out to pull the girl's drawers apart.
"That's enough, Betsy, I'll do that."
Trying not to show her disappointment, for she had no wish to be accused of petulance, Betsy held her tongue and stepped away.
Jamie had selected his favourite cane, a flexible four-foot length of kooboo, and he swished this once, twice and three times through the air as he approached the lovely, bending girl. The sound that the cane made as he swiped it made Betsy's own bare buttocks clench reflexively in response, and she gave a silent prayer of thanks that it was Emma's, and not her own, bottom which was proffered, ready for the kiss of the rod.
Jamie handed the cane to Betsy, who held the awful thing gingerly, as if it were red-hot. Emma gave a frightened little gasp as the young man pulled her drawers open at the back, and exposed a surprisingly plump bottom for so slight a girl. He tutted, failing to get the folds of cotton to fall back to his satisfaction.
"Emma, my dear, you won't mind if we pull these down altogether?"
"Er - yes sir - no sir -um - I - I mean -"
Whatever the maid, in fact, did or did not, mean mattered little for Jamie's fingers had already reached round to untie the drawstrings even as she tried to gasp an answer.
"Good, good," Jamie said, apparently taking her confused mumbling as assent. In a trice, the cotton drawers fluttered down the girl's legs to fall in a drift around her ankles, and her hindquarters were completely exposed.
Emma was too petite for Betsy's idea of the ideal female form; still, the buxom maid had to admit, the girl had a pretty bottom and shapely legs. The kitchen-maid's buttocks were impudently chubby, almost pure white rounds. Her pale thighs were well-fleshed for their size, and her skin looked deliciously creamy, above the black lambswool of her stockings.
Jamie whistled his appreciation. "Small but not too skinny!" he said admiringly. "What a pretty little behind you have, Emma. I shall really enjoy administering this flogging."
He laid the yellow cane across the plump buttocks, producing a reflexive twitch from her muscles, and an anxious gasp from the bending girl.
"Lovely, quite, lovely," the young man said, watching the nether cheeks flinch in anticipation. "That bottom is as plump and sweet as a ripe peach."
Reformatory girls, thought Betsy with a knowing smile - they always came at least partly trained.
"What do you say to a nice, round dozen then, Miss Mischief?" Jamie called as he took up his position.
"Um, I...er...please,sir -"
"Just say 'yes please, sir', you silly little bitch!"
"Yes, please, sir." The kitchen-maid's voice was now no more than a hoarse, thoroughly frightened-sounding whisper.
Betsy looked from the apprehensively twitching bottom to the face of her master, and saw the rapt smile of one entranced as he lifted the cane.
Whoosh - thwack!
The familiar yellow blur shimmered through the air, and the chubby little bottom cheeks wobbled visibly from the impact. Emma hissed and her knees dipped, ever so slightly, before she got back into the prescribed position. Jamie waited, thus the whole nursery waited. The only sound a pained panting from Emma.
The tramline welt bloomed as Betsy watched. It was almost horizontal, bisecting the girl's bottom-cleft just above the middle of her cheeks. The nursery-maid tried to swallow but found, for some reason, that she didn't have enough saliva.
Jamie raised the rod again.
"Ooh, hoo, hoo, hoo..."
Emma's knees dipped deeply and she wiggled her bottom vigorously. This time, getting back into position was clearly a real trial. Jamie waited as the girl regained control of her tongue, and forced her now violently trembling legs to straighten.
The yellow blur came sooner this time, taking Betsy by surprise. It seemed to have caught the young kitchen-maid out too.
Emma howled. She dipped her knees and back, then straightened up again, several times in quick succession. The howling subsided into a gasping and the humping motion into stamping of her dainty feet as the third weal bloomed across her upper thighs.
"Come along, girl," Jamie snapped impatiently, "resume the position. I haven't got all day!"
Still gasping with pain, the kitchen-maid forced herself to straighten her legs and stick her bottom out towards the man wielding the rod. This time there was no mistaking her reluctance. She pressed her hindquarters out hesitantly.
As Jamie raised his cane, the girl's whole body froze. The yellow flicker rippled the air and the girl's buttocks bounced to the sickening sound of impact once again.
Betsy blinked as she watched the girl react to the stroke. Again there was the strange bucking dance but this time, as well as stamping, Emma put her left leg back up and across her right thigh, as if somehow she could shield her hindquarters from the blistering onslaught of the cane this way.
Jamie did not even have to tell her. As the girl regained control from the waves of pain that had carried her away, she forced her body back into the ordained position. Her welted bottom twitched violently in accompaniment to a slew of gasps and sniffles.
Betsy hardly knew how she herself managed to get through the caning; every time the instrument whooshed through the air she gave herself a furtive touch, pulling her hand away before Jamie could turn and catch her. How Emma endured the beating without recourse to restraint was an even greater source of wonder. That the small girl really felt the thrashing was evident from her shrieks. After each stroke she seemed to find it ever harder to present her trembling thighs and flinching bottom for the next.
Yet, somehow, the kitchen-maid managed to stand relatively still for the full twelve. At the end this was only achieved with the dire threat of further strokes should she fail to get back into position, but somehow she managed it.
The twelfth stroke was the worst. Even as she heard the slightly higher pitched sound as the cane cut through the air, Betsy knew that this one was going to be tight. The thwack of hard rod on firm flesh rapped through the nursery only a little more emphatically, but there was no mistaking the ferocity of that final cut.
The sound that first emerged from the girl's lips was not a scream. It was an almost soundless gasp, as if the pain were so intense that she could not get the air out of her lungs. Nor did she move; she seemed to have turned to stone for a full second. After this brief interlude, it was as if a coiled spring had been released. Emma first jumped high into the air before falling to the floor, her legs convulsively thrashing.
The little maid gurgled, shrieked and gasped, clutching and furiously kneading her bottom as she writhed on the floor, so violently that her corsets creaked in protest.
Betsy glanced at Jamie, who was watching with a satisfied smile. He allowed the kitchen-maid to wriggle on the floor for several long minutes, apparently content to watch her squirming in distress, until her cries had subsided to a low sobbing.
"Oooh..it h-h-hurts, s-s-so m-m-much.."
"All right, girl, don't make such a fuss. Get up now and kneel on the chair. Let's have a look at your bottom."
Sniffling and panting heavily, wincing as she moved, the young kitchen-maid slowly got onto her knees on the chair. Her hands moved away from her bottom-cheeks with reluctance. She gripped the back of the chair so hard her knuckles whitened. Her pretty head sagged and her slender back was racked every few seconds by a new spasm of convulsive sobbing.
Betsy stared at the sight the girl presented. Twelve scarlet stripes now barred Emma's bottom and thighs. Just twice the tramlines crossed where the strokes had made an agonising intersection, but overall the welts were remarkably parallel. The painter of the pattern stood and admired his handiwork with a satisfied expression. His left hand worked busily in his trouser pocket as he waved the cane with his right, as if conducting some silent melody.
"There now," he declared at last. "A well-grilled bit of rump, if ever I saw one. I should think Cook will be well satisfied with those when you show her."
This comment only provoked a fresh torrent of sobbing from the kitchen-maid. Jamie bent and planted a tender kiss on the nape of her slender neck.
"There, there, never mind, my dear. I tell you what - ", and he pointed to his bedroom door with the cane " - cut along to that room and wait for me. I have a job or two to finish here -" he looked at Betsy with a smile that froze the buxom maid's blood, "- but when I've finished, I'll come in and give you something much nicer. Something that will make you feel a lot better."
The kitchen-maid turned and looked at Jamie with wide eyes and a solemn expression. Her gaze followed the pointing cane to the door indicated, then back at the cane again. She swallowed hard, as if coming to some momentous decision, then bent to retrieve her drawers.
"Oh no," said Jamie, a triumphant grin on his face, then waved the stick admonishingly. "No, my dear, I don't think you'll be needing those for a while."
The girl took a deep breath, a last appalled look at the still-straining cousins, and trotted off to Jamie's bedroom, wincing with every step.
"Right." Jamie retrieved the tawse from the chaise longue, put down the cane and beamed at Betsy. "Where the devil were we?" He winked as Betsy's stomach turned somersaults. "Oh yes. Now then, Betsy, back to business. Stick that bottom out. Steady."
The dreamy glow that had enveloped Betsy as she watched Emma's thrashing turned back to terror in an instant... There was something about Jamie's demeanour - that, and the ruthless way he had caned the kitchen-maid - that told Betsy with a sickening certainty that he was in a mood to fairly skin her.
He took up his position. The thick leather strap swung idly in his hand. Her bottom quivered expectantly.
"Keep steady now, Betsy. I want to give you a really good crack this time," Jamie was almost conversational.
Betsy closed her eyes tight and held her breath. The seconds that ticked away seemed to slow to minutes as she waited. The struggle to keep in place was so difficult, she was amazed that her knees did not give way beneath her. Another second crawled by...then another...and another...each cranking up the tension evermore unbearably.
Then there was a distinct metallic clink, followed by a sobbing gasp and then a dreadful silence.
"Oh dear, Clara, oh dear. You are a naughty girl!"
Betsy opened her eyes and peeked cautiously. Jamie was shaking his head in a gesture of mock resignation, and looking down sternly at the trembling young blonde girl. The nursery-maid glanced down to see Clara's gold guinea gleaming on the platter between her feet.
Jamie sighed. Turning back to Betsy, he shrugged and winked at her. Then he rubbed his right shoulder as if it were getting stiff.
"Good God," he said. "Looks like you and I will never finish!" Then he turned back menacingly towards Clara. "Betsy, did you ever hear that expression 'no rest for the wicked'?"
8 hours ago