Mrs. Bennett scurried about her kitchen putting on the finishing touches to the family’s breakfast. She dropped four slices of bread in the toaster and knocked on the nearby glass door to the porch. Outside, Mr. Bennett stopped polishing the lenses of his glasses long enough to smile at his wife. A roll of thunder rattled the door between them.
Mr. Bennett returned his attention to Sinbad, the family dog, and the ominous clouds on the horizons. Mrs. Bennett watched the first drops of rain wetting the wood of the porch before turning back into the kitchen. She walked through the main archway into the adjacent breakfast nook and the house beyond. In a raised voice she called out to her children. “Breakfast is ready.”
Near the base of the stairs Miles paced with his cellphone in hand. “Be right there,” he replied, glancing up at his mother. He scrolled the list of names in his directory looking for the contact information for his first appointment of the day. “I just have to make one call first.”
Mrs. Bennett leveled her green eyes on her adult son. Dressed in a charcoal gray suit and wearing a plain burgundy tie, he looked the spitting image of his father minus the glasses, but she still saw her first child. “It can wait until after breakfast,” she said half teasing, half scolding.
Miles paused in his search and looked up at his mother. He took his fingers off the buttons and dropped the phone in his white shirt pocket with a smile. “You’re right,” he said and pointed himself in the direction of the breakfast table.
As he walked past, Mrs. Bennett slapped teasingly at the back of his slacks. “You bet I am,” she said just before a thunder of footsteps on the stairs attracted her attention. Whirling toward the source she asked, “How many times do I have to tell you two not to run in the house?”
Under the disapproving gaze of his mother, Richard abruptly halted his gallop down the stairs. His rubber-soled black oxfords squeaked on the polished wood. Over his shoulder, his navy blue school jacket bounced against his back nearly slipping from his fingers’ loose hold. Richard’s gaze crossed with his mother’s for an instant before he lowered his head to stare at the polished tops of his shoes. His round cheeks flushed pink contrasting with the light blue collar of his dress shirt.
Following a mere step behind him, Rachel skidded to a halt, nearly sending the two of them tumbling down the remainder of the stairs as she collided into Richard’s back. Rachel spent a precarious moment regaining her balance before looking down at her mother. Their eyes locked just long enough for Rachel to realize her morning was starting off on the wrong foot. She pursed her lips and followed her younger brother’s example, looking down at her feet. Nervously, she brushed the stray strands of her dark brown hair back over her shoulders and then tugged at the bottom hem of her red sweater. She blushed a matching color.
Richard’s voice creaked in his throat. “Sorry Mom,” he said.
Rachel gulped and said, “Sorry.”
Mrs. Bennett shook her head at them and pointed the way back upstairs. “All the way back up and walk down them this time,” she said. Richard and Rachel looked at each other before turning around and grudgingly climbed the stairs back to the upper floor. They returned downstairs at a much quieter pace. Mrs. Bennett waited until they were all the way down and then said, “Good morning.”
The two looked suitably chastised as they replied. “Good morning, Mom.”
Mrs. Bennett wagged her finger between the two as if trying to decide which to scold first. She asked, “Which of you started it this time?”
Richard bit at his lower lip and turned his head to look at his sister. Rachel continued to stare at the floor.
Mrs. Bennett tapped her foot, impatient for an answer. “I’m waiting.”
Rachel tried unsuccessfully to swallow the jitters in her throat. “It was me.”
Mrs. Bennett rested her hands on her hips and shook her head at Rachel. “What did I say was going to happen the next time I caught you running in the house?”
Rachel looked up at her mother, eyes fluttering wide open. “Please Mom,” she said, tears welling up in her eyes, “it won’t happen again. I swear.”
Richard took a half step in front of his sister and said, “It’s not all Rachel’s fault. I shouldn’t have agreed to race her. It really won’t happen again.”
Mrs. Bennett said, “I know it won’t because this time there will be consequences.” She looked into Richard’s eyes. “You are grounded through the end of this weekend and,” Mrs. Bennett pointed at Rachel, “you are not only grounded through the weekend, but you’re going to get the spanking I promised you last time as well.”
“But Mom,” Rachel said.
Mrs. Bennett shook her finger at Rachel’s nose. “I don’t want to hear about it.” She looked to Richard and said, “Go and fetch me the paddle and be quick about it.”
Richard looked as if he might argue for a moment, but his mother’s stern gaze seemed to make him reconsider. He retreated from the scene on course to the breakfast nook where the family paddle hung on a small brass hook from the wall. Richard glanced at Miles, seated at the breakfast table and watching him silently. Richard took the paddle off its hook.
It was heavy in his hand as he turned to walk back to the stairs. The mahogany paddle was polished to a shine and the dark color contrasted nicely as it bounced against the leg of Richard’s tan slacks. The paddle was fairly small, shaped like the back of an over-sized hairbrush. As innocuous as it looked dangling from his hand, Richard had no doubt the paddle would soon bring tears to his sister’s eyes.
Mrs. Bennett pointed to the waist button of Rachel’s bluejeans and said, “Take them down.”
Rachel swallowed her objections and set her fingers to the task. The button came free after only a slight catch and her fingers quickly moved on to dragging the zipper down. Her hands grabbed the sides of her jeans in preparation to pull them down when her eyes caught sight of Richard returning with the paddle. Her face blushed hotter realizing that he could already see a triangle of her black panties and would soon see all of them.
“Hurry up,” Mrs. Bennett said still looking at Rachel, “I don’t have all day.”
Rachel wiggled her hips as she pushed the tight jeans downward. A glance at the embarrassed smile on Richard’s face made her stop. With less fuss, Rachel finished tugging her jeans down to her knees and faced her mother.
Mrs. Bennett took the paddle from Richard and pointed for him to stand off to the side and watch. She turned back to Rachel and said, “Turn around and bend over.”
Rachel obeyed, resting her hands on her knees. Her black panties bulged in the direction of her mother and her legs quivered. She closed her eyes and promised herself she would not cry.
Mrs. Bennett stepped to the side of her, taking position with the paddle. She tapped the wood implement against her daughter’s panties and then reached out with both hands, slipping her fingers into the waistband. A moment later, Rachel’s panties were circling her knees and the paddle was resting against her bare bottom.
“How old are you?” Mrs. Bennett asked.
Rachel inhaled a calming breath. “Twenty-one.”
Mrs. Bennett said, “Certainly old enough to know better than to run in the house, wouldn’t you say?”
“Yes Mom,” Rachel said.
“And yet,” Mrs. Bennett said, “here I am about to spank your big butt for doing exactly that. What do you have to say for yourself?”
Rachel said, “I’m sorry.”
“Not yet you’re not,” Mrs. Bennett said raising the paddle into the air, “but you will be.”
The paddle slapped into the white flesh of Rachel’s left buttock causing her entire bottom to bounce. Mrs. Bennett quickly raised the paddle and brought it down on the right buttock leaving Rachel with two identical pink marks on each side of her butt. Rachel endured the initial swats in silence and with dry eyes.
Mrs. Bennett took a step closer to Rachel. She placed her left arm on Rachel’s back and tugged the hem of Rachel’s sweater until it rested in the center of her back. Mrs. Bennett held the paddle at a downward angle and began to swat her daughter’s bare bottom in earnest. She settled into a fast paced rhythm of left cheek followed by right cheek and back again, covering the once white flesh in a blush colored glow.
As the intensity began to build, Rachel found it increasingly difficult to remain stoic. Her legs began to shake stronger and soon her knees joined in, flexing up and down as if she could move her bottom out of the way. The paddle never missed. Rachel started to yelp and the welled tears in her eyes slipped down her face.
“I learned my lesson,” Rachel said with desperation in her voice.
Mrs. Bennett did not so much as pause in the rapid delivery of swats. “We’ll just make certain.”
Rachel yelped and gasped, trying to catch her breath between the swats. She wiggled her bottom around as if the act could douse the flames of stinging pain emanating behind her. Sobs rose up in her chest and began to shake her entire body. There was no escaping the paddle or its effect. Rachel surrendered to it.
With a final flurry of swats, Mrs. Bennett ended the spanking and took a step back from her daughter. “Stand up and turn around and face me.”
Rachel hesitated only a few seconds before rising up and facing her mother. She wiped the tears from her face and sniffled. Though part of her wanted to meet her mother’s gaze, Rachel knew the smart thing to do was to stare at the floor and act humbled. She said, “I’m sorry.”
Mrs. Bennett nodded. “I certainly hope this is the last time I have to say something to you about running in the house.”
“Yes Mom,” Rachel said.
Mrs. Bennett raised Rachel’s chin with a finger to look her in the eye. “Now, just to be certain you’ve got the message, you are going to walk up and down these stairs twenty-one times and,” Mrs. Bennett turned to look at Richard, “you are going to stand right there and count aloud each time she comes down. Am I understood?”
Richard and Rachel said, “Yes Mom.”
Rachel leaned down to pull her pants and panties up, but her mother stopped her in the act. “Leave them where they are,” Mrs. Bennett said.
Rachel stared wide-eyed at her mother. “But I’ll trip and fall.”
Mrs. Bennett shook her head. “No, you’ll just have to walk real slow and hold onto the handrail like you should be doing in the first place. Now get started before I make it forty-two times.”
Rachel let go of her grasp on her panties and stood up straight. She glanced at Richard only to find him looking at the floor instead of her as she expected. The blush on his cheeks was almost as bright as the blush on hers, making her realize that he was embarrassed by the situation as well. She turned to the stairs and took her first careful step back up them, grabbing the rail in case she tripped.
Mrs. Bennett looked up the stairs past Rachel and asked, “Where’s your sister?”
Rachel kept her focus on climbing the stairs, remaining silent in response to her mother’s question, but Richard released and nervous chuckle and said, “Still in bed.”
“Rachel,” Mrs. Bennett said, “didn’t you wake her up?”
Rachel bit at her lip and looked back at her mother. “I tried,” she said. “I’ll go try again, if you want.”
Mrs. Bennett shook her head. “No, you have some trips to make up and down these stairs. I’ll take care of Michelle.” She grabbed the opposite rail and started up the stairs.