Tuesday, January 7, 2014

From the Top Shelf - Fifty Years Ago

For our first story for 2014 I have chosen one that is a look back into the past. "Fifty Years Ago" by Pauline Summers is the first-person account of her introduction to birching in a reformatory.  The story is from the Janus Collection of Spanking Stories. I hope you enjoy it.

Fifty Years Ago

I do not suppose that there are any of the present generation who realise what it was like to be in what were called 'reformatories', fifty years ago. I entered one of these establishments later in life than many, being a well-developed girl of eighteen when it happened, and knowing that I would be an adult woman by the time I left.

For some reason there was not a uniformed policeman available to take me on the train journey and so the authorities found a retired policeman to escort me, who, of course, was in ordinary clothes. He was a man in his fifties, grey-haired and kindly. On the train, he tried to give me some good advice to keep me out of trouble in future, but with the willfulness that had just led to my court appearance, and my resentment of all authority, I spurned his attempts to help me. Not only that, but I jeered and laughed at him, calling him an old fuddy-duddy. He showed great patience at my rudeness and constantly begged me to change my ways and 'knuckle down to it' otherwise I would find myself in real trouble at the reformatory. He observed that I would probably be in line for a good dose of the cane. This only increased my resentment and I said:

"I'd like to see anyone try to cane me!" Then I called him an old fool and to stop wasting his breath.

That did it! He said "You are a silly little girl. It's about time you learnt some manners, and perhaps this will teach you. You've been asking for it!"

He reached across the carriage, and a moment later I was floundering across his knees. I fought and struggled, but all to no avail. He got my wildly flailing hands held behind my back, and secured my frantically kicking legs between his. He began to pull up my skirt and underskirt, and for the first time I began to feel fear and apprehension. I could not remember the last time I had been spanked, but I knew what I was in for now. I yelled at him and threatened to tell the authorities about him but he just laughed and said:

"That's better. Not so cocky now are you, my girl!" My skirt and petticoat were up over my shoulders after some effort. He would have had much less trouble in these days of mini-skirts! Suddenly I felt his hand at my waist and my knickers being lowered.

"No, please, no!" I cried in horror, but it was useless. Down came my knickers, and down came his heavy hand on my bare bottom. It came down with a hard and painful crack. It was not so much the pain as the indignity of my situation that appalled me. That soon changed, for as his hand continued to beat my unprotected bottom, the pain increased to a point where I forgot my humiliation, and all my youthful conceit and arrogance vanished. I begged him to stop but he took no notice. How long the spanking went on I have no idea, maybe five minutes, but it seemed like hours. At last, when my whole bottom felt as if it was on fire, he stopped, pulled up my knickers and set me on my feet with the words:

"I hope that has done you some good, my girl. The next time you are tempted to be insolent remember, at the reformatory you will get a lot worse that that!" I was furious and close to tears, but had just enough sense not to answer back.

At last the long journey ended. Just before we entered the gates of the reformatory that was to be my home for the next three years, he put his hand on my shoulder and said:

"Be sensible. Try to be a good girl and it won't be so bad." Then, to my surprise, he gave a little chuckle and said: "I don't for a minute suppose you will take my advice, and then you'll have to learn the hard way, but you're a lucky girl in one respect."

"Lucky?" I snapped, "How?"

He grinned at me. "You've got the right kind of bottom to go with your impudence, my girl! It's the loveliest, most spankable and shapely rear end I've ever seen," then added, "tough too. It'll take a deal of good tannings and still come up smiling - and I reckon it'll need to unless you quickly develop a lot more common sense."

Inside, I was handed over to a hard-faced grim looking woman who gave me my uniform clothing. I was told to strip naked by this woman and I blushed for I didn't see how she could fail to notice my scarlet bottom. However she gave no sign. I had to don a coarse vest, a cheap corset, a pair of awful and rough cotton drawers, and a grey serge dress.

Then I was told to wait in the corridor. While I waited, I saw a young mistress in breeches and high boots walk down the corridor with a girl about my own age. I learnt later that this was the mistress who supervised the girls' work in the gardens and with the animals. The mistress was carrying a cane. They went into a small room from which I could hear nothing, and five minutes later they re-emerged. The girl's face was distorted with pain and she dug her hands into her armpits. The mistress said sharply, "Brown! Walk properly - hands at your sides! Left, right, left right!" The girl obeyed, though with an obvious effort, obeyed, and started to march smartly.

I began to realise that my reformatory escort had been telling the truth, and had been trying to warn me. Unfortunately the warning still did not sink in and, that night in the dormitory, after the mistress had left and turned out the lights I began to talk. I asked some of the girls how long they had been there, why they were there, how long they had to 'do', and where they came from. All I got was a series of "Ssssh" and one girl whispered quietly, "Be quiet or you'll get us all into trouble!"

"Why?" I asked, and just then the lights came on, the mistress came in and walked over to my bed then looked down at me. She was young, pretty, with a beautiful, shapely figure. She said softly:
"Summers, I know you're new here, and that everything is strange and that you feel resentful and lonely, but you've been told the rules and you won't be told again. You are older than the other girls, and should set an example to them. This is my last warning. The next time you will be punished."

The quiet way in which she had spoken, and her calm manner, impressed me, and I made no more trouble that night. My memory, however, was far too short. The next night, as soon as she'd gone, I got out of bed and pranced up and down the dormitory, mimicking her voice.

"You will be punished," I said, in false falsetto tones. I got the other girls sniggering and laughing, and continued to prance up and down. "You know the rules, Summers," I mimicked. I held up my nightdress in one hand, swayed my bottom and wriggled it in the way the mistress had a tendency to do when she walked. Suddenly, I became aware that the door was open, and that someone - I could not see who -was standing in the doorway.

I stood frozen like a statue in the middle of the room with an idiotic smile on my face. There were stifled, horrified gasps from the other girls. The mistress walked slowly towards me.

"So!" she said, in her soft voice, "it seems that my warning didn't sink in. That's a pity, Pauline, because I was hoping that you would settle down and be a credit to me. Perhaps you didn't realise it, but any major disobedience reflects on me. If my girls misbehave, it makes me look bad and I get into trouble. Of course, nowhere near as much trouble as you, you silly girl. You really are in for it now! Not only have you broken rules and induced the rest of your dormitory to do the same, but you have gone so far as to hold me up to ridicule too. I'm afraid it's going to look awfully bad on your report. I shall have to take you to the office in the morning after breakfast. I can't say for sure, but I shall be surprised if you don't receive a severe caning - six at least - and perhaps seven days solitary on bread and water too."

I felt my heart sink. Six strokes on my hands would hurt dreadfully. I remembered the girl I had seen in the corridor. I ought to have realised from the length of time she was in the room that she must have had at least three strokes on each hand, and from the pain she was in, they were heavy ones. Then there was the prospect of seven days alone with only bread and water, and that really scared me. I had been told, too, that all the girls sent into solitary, no matter how old, were stripped just to vest and knickers for the entire period. What an awful prospect!

I swallowed my pride. "I'm sorry, Miss," I said. "I didn't mean any harm. I didn't mean to ridicule you."

She looked at me for a moment or two and then said, "I don't really want to report you, Pauline, but you must be punished. I'm sure you understand that I'd much rather punish you myself but that requires your consent. Would you accept punishment from me, and say nothing about it afterwards? The other girls won't talk, will you, girls?"

"No, Miss," came the immediate and unanimous chorus.

"Yes, I accept, Miss and I promise not to tell," I gulped, vastly relieved at the prospect of not having to visit the Head in the morning. Somehow I had no fear of this mistress. I believe I would have even taken six cuts on the hands from her without a whimper. I realised that this young woman was not only firm, but fair and just. She would see that I got exactly what I deserved, but not a stroke more.

She said to me. "Very well. Get back into bed. Edwards! Jefferson!," she called to two other girls, "show her what to do." Then she left the room. The two girls scrambled out of bed grinning with excitement. The next thing, my bed was pulled out into the middle of the room.

"Come on - hop in!" I was told. I hopped in and lay back down. "Not that way up, stupid," one girl giggled, "on your tummy. Come on, turn over!"

"What is going to happen?" I asked, although I had a pretty shrewd idea.

"You're going to get your bum warmed," was the giggled reply. I was made to lie flat, my pillow was taken from under my head and inserted under my tummy. Then the bedclothes were pulled right down and another pillow inserted under my ankles. I suddenly became embarrassingly aware of my bottom. At no time an insignificant part of my anatomy, it now, elevated as it was by the pillow, seemed to be much larger than ever, and what was worse, determined to display itself in the crudest, most obscene manner. I tried to squeeze my cheeks in, but due to the pillows under both tummy and feet, found that I had no control over its muscles at all.

"Cor, what a lovely big bum," said one girl's voice. "I bet Miss will give that a few extra strokes!"

"I wouldn't mind having a smack or two at that myself!" said another girl, and suited the action to her words by giving me a mighty slap across my behind.

Then the cry went up, "Look out, here she comes!" The bedclothes were pulled over me and sudden silence fell on the room. The door opened. As the mistress walked in, the light click of her shoes and my own tremulous breathing were the only sounds to be heard. I could not see too well from my upside down world. The sound of the footsteps ceased at my bedside. I turned my head and looked up. She was standing quite still, looking down at me. For a moment our eyes met, and then I recognised the object she held in her hands. It was a birch rod.

I felt a shiver of apprehension run down my spine, and I felt a sensation of goose pimples all over my bottom. This was the dreaded instrument with which bad boys were thrashed, and criminals too. I was to be viciously flogged, like a felon. I remembered the tales I had heard of strong men fainting on the whipping triangle. In spite of my fears, I could not take my eyes off the birch. It fascinated me and she knew it, for she stood moving it gently before my eyes so I would see all of it. Much though I dreaded what I was about to get, it did not look so terrible as I expected. It was at least three feet long and quite slender, being made of several - perhaps a dozen - thin twigs cut from a silver birch tree. Incongruously, there went through my mind the start of a little poem I had learnt as a small child:

'The Silver Birch is a dainty lady.'

Well, her ladyship, dainty or not, and I were about to make an acquaintance. The twigs still had pale green leaves, and it was not bushy, as I had always thought a birch would be. The twigs curved inwards at the top, so that the fattest part was about two thirds up. One end of the birch was bound most neatly with thin white cord, making a handle about ten inches long. Again, incongruously, I admired the workmanship. It was bizarre to think that a lot of loving care and workmanship had gone into making this thing do what it was intended to do most efficiently. I started to think strange thoughts and I admit to becoming a trifle hysterical.

I collected my scattered thoughts just as one of the girls said, "Shall we hold her down, Miss?"

I lifted my eyes and they met those of the beautiful mistress. For what seemed like a full minute we stared at one another and I felt that she was staring deep into my soul. I felt she was offering me friendship, help and understanding in addition to punishment.

She said, quietly as always, "No, I don't think that will be necessary. There won't be any need to restrain you - will there, Pauline?"

In that moment I knew that I would not betray her trust, even if she whipped me to death. I shook my head, gulped, gave a sob and buried my face between my arms.

The bedclothes were drawn gently back, and there was a quick murmur of girlish voices, then a sudden hush. I gripped the bed rails, determined that, however bad the pain, I would not scream.

The hush deepened. There was then a sudden rash of whispering and concerted gasps from nineteen very excited girls, as the first stroke fell on my naked bottom. My whole body jumped, and my breath exploded in a gasp, but a gasp of surprise more than pain. To this day I cannot describe the sensation that engulfed me as the birch struck my bare bottom for the first time. It was painful, yes, but nothing at all like the fierce cutting pain I had expected. It stung as if my whole bottom had been suddenly stung by a bed of nettles. Surely, I thought, this cannot be what the boys go in terror of?

I waited, almost eagerly, for the next stroke to fall. It came with a slight 'swish'. I felt my bottom quiver as the twigs curled around the uplifted cheeks and the sting it left was certainly stronger than the first one had been, but it wasn't awful or unbearable. In fact, it was nowhere near as painful as the spanking the ex-policeman had given me. His words came back to me at that moment. He'd said I had the prettiest and most spankable bum he'd ever seen, and that I was lucky to be its owner. Was there something special about my bottom, apart from its being a bit larger and rounder than that of most girls of my age?

My thoughts were so confused that I hardly noticed the third and fourth strokes, but when the fifth landed I was suddenly aware that my whole behind was very hot and the tingling had become intense. The sixth stroke confirmed my awareness. It stung dreadfully, and I felt my bottom squirming to protect itself, and in protest. The cheeks tried to squeeze together, but because I was so perched on the pillows, they couldn't. All that happened was my spine reacted in a curious way. It sort of rippled, and my bottom moved up and down and kept on doing it. I didn't seem to have any control over it at all.

The next stroke arrived, and I had to cling hard to the bed rail to stop myself from crying out. After that I lost count of the strokes for my poor bottom seemed to turn into a huge ball of fire, and I was panting, gasping and wriggling around frantically. Through a haze of stinging pain, I was dimly aware of other gasps and excited chattering, and acutely aware that my rebellious buttocks were rising and falling with a peculiar regular motion and that, each time they rose, my immodestly opened cheeks received another stroke.

Later, when I witnessed other girls being birched, I was to learn that this phenomenon of the bottom 'offering itself' to the rod was peculiar to a birching, and especially when the birch was wielded by an expert, who, by carefully regulating the weight and timing of the stroke, could induce the buttocks to rise to receive the next stroke.

I was trembling all over and in fearful state of excitement when the whipping finally ceased. Sobbing, squirming, and scarcely able to believe it was all over, I was dimly aware of my clenched hands being prised away from the bed rail and the pillow being gently pulled from under my hips. Something cold and wet was draped across my poor, trembling, scalded bottom, which I was convinced was a mass of raw, open bleeding cuts. The mistress walked back towards the door and, on command, there was a scamper of bare feet on the floor boards, the light went out, and I was left to sob myself to sleep. Oddly enough, sleep was not long delayed.

The next morning, I was the centre of attraction and had to let all the girls in the dormitory inspect my bottom before I got dressed. It then occurred to me that I had not seen it myself and one of the girls obligingly produced a large mirror from somewhere. To my surprise, my bottom was not cut at all. It was smothered all over from my hips to my thighs in dozens of tiny weals, but it was very sore and ached for some time.

Just before breakfast, the mistress called me into her room and asked me how I felt. She said that she was sorry she'd had to punish me, and hoped that I would learn from it. Then she asked me to take my knickers down so that she could inspect my bottom, making me bend over a table so she could examine it. Rather strangely, this made me blush like mad, which seemed silly after all that had happened, although when I turned back I noticed that her face was bathed in a pink sheen too.

That was the only time I ever had a birching, although I had many a bare bottom caning from the same mistress - but that's a story for another time.

Well! That started the new year off with a bang!

From Hermione's Heart


Roz said...

Fantastic story Hermione! Really enjoyed this. Thanks for sharing.


Unknown said...

Wow! If it wasn't for my severely bruised tailbone at the moment, I think I'd be asking my hubby to try this. But that could just be the desperation talking after being out of commission for the past few weeks!

Thanks for sharing it with us.

Minielle Labraun said...

That was a great story. The scene in the coach and the dormitory.

Anonymous said...

Great story!

ronnie said...


Great spanking scene in the dormitory.

A perfect choice to start the year. Thank you.


Our Bottoms Burn said...

Challenge. Hermione, since you have an interest in such stores, I would read with interest one written by you that places yourself in such a situation.

Hermione said...

Roz - Thank you. I thought it might be too long, but didn't want to break it up.

Measha - Ouch! That's painful. I broke mine many years ago.

Minelle - Having a spanking occurring so early in a story is unusual.

Princess - Thank you and welcome!

Ronnie - I liked the dormitory scene too.

Bogey - Fiction is not my forte, I'm afraid.


Aimless Rambling said...


Anonymous said...

That was great Hermione! I loved the part where one of the girls smacked her bottom. Made me giggle.

Anonymous said...

great story..thanks for posting
Have you ever been birched?
bottoms up

Hermione said...

Leigh - Indeed!

Sara - I'll bet they enjoyed it too.

Red - No, never, and it isn't likely to happen. Birch borers are real pests here.


Annabelle said...

Great bedtime story. Appreciate your sharing. Interesting that spankings have been a source of interest for many years.

Hermione said...

Catherine - Yes, it's been around for a looong time!