Tuesday, September 22, 2015

From the Top Shelf - An Introduction to the Birch

I enjoyed reading A Degree of Discipline, and I hope you did too, but I must admit I was disappointed that we did not see the birching bench put to its intended use. I intend to remedy the situation with today's story. There's no birching bench in it, but a very thorough birching makes up for the omission.

This extract is from Miriam by Patrick Henden, published by Blue Moon Books, and the writing style is reminiscent of earlier anonymous authors of Victorian flagellation novels.  Miriam, a new student at Grangemoor boarding school, is summoned to the Principal's study, unaware at this time, innocent and naive as she is, that the good lady is an 'addict of the rod'.

"You are to see Miss Collett in her study at five, Miriam."

These fateful words being uttered to me were to change my entire life, though then I knew it not. I was then approaching my seventeenth birthday - a boarding school "Miss" who often yearned for the greater comfort of home than Grangemoor afforded. I was a quiet girl and not given to mischief. The reasons for my having to see the Principal were therefore rather mysterious to me. I could only, however, accept, with a demure nod, the dictate of my French Mistress, Mademoiselle Aline d' Arville.

The glances that were cast upon me by the other girls around me in the classroom filled me with apprehension. One was rarely, if ever, sent to Miss Collett to be praised. Perhaps she had news of home to give me? Such thoughts increased my perturbation. Seeing this from the expression on my face, Mademoiselle D'Arville leaned over me and whispered,"You have done nothing wrong. You are simply to receive a lesson."

My astonishment at this was great, for the Principal never descended to teaching herself, except very occasionally to condescend to a group of the most senior girls. I felt flattered yet I remained uneasy, with good reason as shall be seen.

Long did the two hours drag until the hour approached for me to present myself. Having knocked upon the door of Miss Collett's study, I was held in waiting for several moments before it was opened by Cynthia Martin, the head girl. She was devilishly attractive, though putting on many airs and being whispered to be a distinct favourite of several of the younger teachers. She appeared slightly flushed of face and her hair was awry, though at the time I put this down to my imagination.

I could not help but take note, however, that two of the buttons of her dress were undone close to her bosom, and such untidyness struck me as exceedingly odd.

"You may enter. The Principal is ready to see you," she said. Catching my possibly over-obvious glance, she fiddled with the loose buttons and went out hurriedly. I made my entrance very nervously and with uncertain steps, being told by Miss Collett - who was seated at her desk - to enter sharply and to close the door. Upon doing so and approaching her, I noticed with surprise that a small birch lay upon the polished surface of her small writing desk, which stood to one side of the main one.

I was then put to questions about the progress of my education during the past six months of my tenure, which I thought I had answered well enough. All the time, however, I had a strange feeling that Miss Collett was regarding me with a faint mixture of amusement and sadness, which quite put me out for I lost track of what I was saying.

"You seem to have made reasonable progress, Miriam, in English literature, in geography and history. Your knowledge of French, however is sadly lacking," Miss Collett opined, to my bemusement, for I thought I had got on reasonably well with all the horrid verbs and strange words.

"Oh but I have tried," I stammered.

"Not enough, I fear, Miriam. I mean to give you a little lesson in applying yourself. Go to the couch there, raise your skirt to your hips and kneel upon the cushions."

Her words struck me like a thunderclap. I had never been so much as spanked until that moment and could not believe what I was hearing. My expression made this evident, as did the stumbling but incomprehensible words that tumbled from my lips. I believe indeed that I moved a step back towards the door. At this her eyes narrowed and she rose.

"Are you disobeying me, Miriam?"

"Oh no, Madam, no, but..."

"There are no 'buts' when I attend to a young girl's bottom," was the response, at which she came round her desk and took my elbow. Being thus guided to the couch, I all but fell upon it which caused her to complain loudly.

"Position yourself properly! Right up on hands and knees with your hips and posterior raised. My, what pretty drawers you are wearing! They may remain on for this occasion, though I vow this will be the first and last birching you will receive without your bottom fully bared."

I misunderstood her words, taking it to mean that I was to receive only this one admonition for sins and omissions that I felt sure I had not committed. Shamefully raising my dress as she had bid me to, I waited with dried lips while Miss Collett walked back to the escritoire and picked up the birch. Approaching me again from the rear, she then twitched it across the backs of my thighs, which made me jerk and utter a small cry, though the twigs were softened.

"There are two lessons I have to teach you, Miriam. The first is that French verbs will be learned in all their conjugations. The second is that a well-brought-up young lady makes the least noise under the birch. It disconcerts others and merely leads to further application of the twigs. Do you understand?"

"Y...y...yes, Madam."

"Your posture, Miriam, is appalling. You dismay me. Dip your back, girl, and make your bottom more prominent. Good heavens, has your papa never spanked or birched you?"

"Oh no, Madam!" I gasped while uneasily endeavouring to obey her wishes. My body being young and supple I was able to globe my bottom up to her while yet praying that she would accord me only the lightest strokes.

Such wishful thinking was soon to be dispersed. A swishing sound, caused by the twigs passing rapidly through the air, came to my ears and then almost simultaneously I felt their burning sweep across my half moons. So burning, indeed, was it that a racking cry of alarm broke from me, which I instantly attempted to muffle. My hips twitched and my bottom cheeks squeezed beneath the stretched white cotton of my drawers.

"This, then, my dear, is the christening of your bottom," said Miss Collett with what sounded like a trickle of laughter in her voice, though this too I put down to my imagination. Humped over as I was, I could see naught but the inky blackness of the velvet under my eyes. It was warm to the touch and I realised with astonishment that Cynthia must also have knelt upon it. Her face had not appeared distraught, however, as did mine at the second impact of the twigs, which again caught me full across the bulge and caused me to swallow down a cry as best I could.

"AAAAAAAHH!" The cry burst from me unwittingly, for there was no pause between the second and the third, which, if anything, basted my poor nether cheeks more fiercely and caused my hips to squirm with yet more animation. Already I felt that my poor bottom was on fire.

"You must try to be quiet, Miriam! This is only the beginning of your lesson," Miss Collett admonished me and thus made me very uneasy with regard to her comments about 'first and last time'. Naive as I was, I did not appreciate at that moment that on all future occasions my bottom would be bared for the birch. It truly was my only experience of a birching where my drawers were left on. Of such knowledge, I was, at that time, oblivious. I heard the outpourings of my own breath, which came in would-be muffled gasps and cries as the birch assailed my left cheek, then my right until I was wriggling around violently.

Miss Collett did not seem to be put out by this and, by devious movements of her arm and wrist was able to follow my contortions so that at no time did my bottom escape the twigs but rather suffered all the more.

I sobbed, I covered my eyes, I strove to contain the surging heat and the stinging, yet I felt I could not. So insistently did the birch assail me that I thought it would never end. Only afterwards did I learn with great astonishment that I had received but a round dozen. It had seemed like hundreds. Every inch of my globe sparkled with fire, while my cheeks were soaking wet with my tears.

"Up with you now, girl, and stand!" I heard all of a sudden and even though I was so in pain I felt I couldn't move, I was minded at least to escape that awful swishing and so somehow scrambled to my feet with my skirt all awry around my waist. I made indeed to tug it down, but a sharp sally of the birch across my right wrist made me cry out and desist.

"When you are told to stand, you STAND...and do nothing more!" Miss Collett admonished me. I could hardly see her through my film of tears. My hips wriggled for I could not help myself. Miss Collett, far from complaining, appeared to drink in all that she saw, from the tips of my boots to my white stocking tops and the lightly swelling columns of flesh that rose up from them.

"You will continue to stand posed exactly thus for a few minutes while I attend to some papers," I was told. I found it difficult to do so. Above all I wanted to clutch at my hot bottom and squeeze the cheeks gently to try and rid them of the awful burning pain. Afraid that I might get another swishing, however, I stood as still as I could, being very conscious of my skirt around my waist and my legs and drawers showing.

For long, long minutes I was ignored while the Principal, seated again at her desk, perused I know not what accounts or reports, though she appeared to do so with eagle eye, her pen now and again twitching across a sheet of paper.

After a seeming eternity, she raised her eyes to me again. My tears had dried. A warm glow was slowly announcing itself in my bottom cheeks as the stinging sensation receded. Again she appeared to weigh me up. Then, appearing satisfied, she nodded.

"Restore yourself neatly, Miriam, and report back to your French class." she said.
That was quite a birching! Now then, on with conjugation.
From Hermione's Heart


Roz said...

Another wonderful story Hermoine, thank you :) I enjoyed reading this, quite the birching indeed! I think Miss Collette was enjoying herself too!


Lindy Thomas said...

Thanks Hermione for another great story. Very descriptive.
Lindy x

Baxter said...

good story. quite arousing. :)


Anonymous said...

Good story, but that birch would only smart mildly applied to the seat of her uniform knickers, which were probably not that thin, and also covering most of her rear end. Birchings should be on the bare bottom, well bent over and spread, so that the thin twigs can seek out not only her plump cheeks, but her soft thighs, and other sensatave spots.

ronnie said...

Quite a birching. She was lucky that she was able to keep her drawers on. Enjoyed the story Hermione Thanks.


Cat said...

Have never had a birching and after reading this...very happy I haven't! ;) Thanks for sharing Hermione.

Hugs and blessings...Cat

Belsteph said...

Does anyone know where I can purchase or download this (or any book by Patrick Henden) in eBook format? I've searched around and only found paperback.