Stephanie returned to her bedroom wrapped in a towel, fresh out of a steaming hot shower. It was good to be home. She closed her bedroom door and dropped the towel on the floor. Her eyes twinkled with mischief looking at the crumpled blue cotton laying on the carpet. Mother would never know. Stephanie left it there and opened her closet door to peruse her summer choices. The bright sun and clear blue skies outside her window shouted hot.
A soft knock rapped on her bedroom door. Stephanie darted for the towel. Her bedroom door swung open just as her fingers grasped hold of the towel’s edge. Stephanie stared at the door a red blush rising onto her cheeks as a silent curse at her own stupidity banged against the insides of her skull.
Amanda slipped into the room and closed the door behind herself. She giggled. “Ooh, I’m going to tell Mom.”
Stephanie breathed easier and a smile rose to her lips. “I’m shaking in my boots.”
Amanda’s gaze dropped to Stephanie bare feet. “You aren’t wearing any.”
Stephanie tossed the towel on her bed and returned to her closet. “So what’s new? You still with that boy, Jason?”
Amanda shrugged and plopped herself down on Stephanie’s unmade bed. “He’s away for a summer vacation, so I guess I’m free for the summer.”
Stephanie laughed. “You should at least charge a guy dinner and a movie before giving him sex.”
“Food and flicks are so overrated. I’ll just take his charge card and go shopping.” Amanda laughed.
Stephanie thumbed through her hanging clothes. Her fingers stopped on a purple tee and she pulled it off the hanger and threw it onto the bed. She turned to her left and pulled open a middle drawer in her dresser. A pair of white shorts sailed through the air, joining the purple top.
Amanda shook her head. “No, this won’t do at all.”
Stephanie looked over her shoulder and raised an eyebrow at her younger sister. “It’s hot, they’re cool. What’s the problem?”
Amanda smiled. “It’s hot, I’m hot, and you need to be hot so we can go to the lake.”
Stephanie turned more fully toward her sister. Amanda’s short summer dress would barely reach the middle of her thighs if she were standing. Her blue bikini top was easily visible through the thin fabric of her dress and the white strappy sandals on her feet definitely screamed for a day at the lake. But it was Stephanie’s first day home and she had things to do that their mother was unlikely to let slide. “I can’t go to the lake today.”
Amanda’s lower lip protruded in a pout. “Why not?”
Stephanie shook her head. “I just got home.” She gestured at her as yet unpacked suitcase sitting on the floor at the foot of her bed. “I have to unpack and do laundry. You know Mom won’t hesitate to have my butt blistered if I make the slightest misstep over the next few days. She’s still upset with me from the holidays.”
Amanda rolled her eyes. Their mother definitely knew how to beat dead horse back to life, but Stephanie was almost as bad, holding onto guilty feelings long after all had been forgiven. “You can still do whatever needs to be done this afternoon when we get back,” Amanda said. “Come on it’s your first day back, have a little fun. You deserve it.”
Stephanie shook her head. “Mom will never allow it.”
“Do you want to go?” Amanda asked.
Stephanie shrugged. “Sure, but that’s not going to change Mom’s mind.”
Amanda stood up off the bed. “Let me deal with Mom. Just wear something cute and don’t forget your bikini,” she said. “Well, unless you want to go skinny dipping, that is.”
Stephanie watched her little sister go out the door and close it quietly in her wake. She shook her head. Amanda always did seem to get their parents to do whatever she wanted. She looked back in her closet and grabbed a lightweight summer dress. Unpacking could definitely wait.
The aroma of frying bacon and fried eggs filled the downstairs. Stephanie entered the kitchen where her sister and parents were sitting at the breakfast table just getting started with the morning meal. She grabbed a mug from the shelf next to the fridge and filled it to the brim with fresh black coffee. Her plate already sat in front of her usual place at the table and her mother went to work filling it as soon as Stephanie stepped through the doorway into the kitchen.
Amanda continued working her magic on their parents. “Everybody is going to be there.”
Mrs. Pickett slopped eggs onto Stephanie’s plate. “We’re not going to be there.”
Amanda didn’t even blink. She kept smiling in their father’s direction. “Stephanie is just home from school and I wanted to spend some time with her. It’ll be fun and it’s so hot anyway, it’s not like we’ll be doing anything useful around here.”
Mr. Pickett crunched on his toast.
Mrs. Pickett sat back in her seat. “Stephanie needs to unpack and she’s undoubtedly got loads of laundry to do,” she said, watching as Stephanie took her seat at the table and then turning her focus on Amanda, “not to mention, your room is in serious need of cleaning.”
Amanda swallowed a mouthful of eggs. “We can do all that this afternoon when we get back. It’s not like we’ll be gone all day.”
Mrs. Pickett looked across the table at her husband. “Don’t you have something to say?” she asked.
Mr. Pickett looked up from his plate and glanced from side to side at his daughters. “I don’t see any harm as long as they finish their chores before dinner.”
Amanda smiled wide. “You’re the best, Dad.”
He nodded and continued enjoying his breakfast.
Mrs. Pickett frowned, but simply picked up her fork and resumed eating her own breakfast without another word on the subject.
The lake was at the edge of a canyon buried in the forest on the outskirts of town. Its shoreline could only be reached via a narrow dirt road that wound its way down the side of the canyon. The trek was a dizzying five miles that had Stephanie holding a deathgrip on the dashboard of Amanda’s jeep. Despite Stephanie’s worst fears, they arrived safely at the bottom and early enough to have their pick of the sandy real estate adjacent to the cold blue water. Stephanie opted for swimming, shedding her summer dress on a towel and wading into the water in her favorite red bikini. Amanda stayed on the beach sunbathing and carefully watching the new arrivals in hopes of finding some real summer fun.
Stephanie encountered old friends from her high school days and swam with them for a while as they caught up on each other’s lives over the past year. The morning turned into afternoon and Stephanie decided it was time to go home even though she would much rather stay in the cool water than go home and do her chores in the sweltering heat. But, there was plenty more summer ahead and the lake was going nowhere. She swam to shore and walked out of the water.
Amanda was chatting away with two guys. The guys wore long swim trunks, floppy sandals, and tan bare chests with rippling muscles. They were both blondes and the shorter of the two was clearly into Amanda. His companion, kept his eyes on Stephanie as she approached.
Stephanie smiled and picked up her towel from the sand. “Sorry to bring the rain,” she said, looking at her sister, “but it’s time for us to head home.”
Amanda stretched and looked at the watch she’d tossed onto her towel earlier. “Nope, not even close,” she said. Her hand gestured toward the two guys, the taller first and then the shorter. “Have you met Dylan and Chandler?”
Dylan was still staring at Stephanie. He extended his hand. “You must be Stephanie.”
Stephanie eyed her sister while she shook his hand. “I don’t really have to be, but it’s a pain to change one’s name.”
He laughed in a manner that suggested he was genuinely amused. “I like you already.”
Stephanie smiled at him. “Then you really have to help me convince my little sister that it’s time to go home.”
“Stephanie!” Amanda said with her eyes nearly popping out. She despised being called little, especially in anything resembling a social situation.
Dylan glanced up at the sky. “I’m pretty sure there’s a law that says girls in bikinis aren’t allowed to go home until the sun goes down.”
Stephanie looked down at her sundress on the sand. “I guess I’ll just have to put my dress back on then.”
She leaned down to pick it up, but Dylan beat her to it. He held it just out of her reach.
Her head cocked to the side and her lips formed a half frown, half smile as she looked into his eyes. “Give it,” she said and jumped, swatting her hand through the air in a fruitless attempt to grab the wadded up garment.
He laughed. “I’ll trade you for your bikini.”
“In your dreams.” She grabbed for it again and again missed.
Still chuckling, he said, “I tell you what, we’ll race for it. If you can beat me to the first platform and back to shore, I’ll give you your dress back.”
Stephanie looked behind her out on the lake. There were a series of six floating platforms, each numbered in large white numbers on old yellow signs made of rusting metal. Sunbathers occupied all of them, but the real purpose was to give swimmers a break and provide spots for lifeguards to watch over the crowds that typically overwhelmed the lake during the hottest days of summer. The first one looked to be about 100 feet from the shore.
She looked back at Dylan. “And what if I lose?”
He smiled wide. “I get your bikini and keep your dress too.”
She blushed. “That hardly seems fair.”
He shrugged. There was confident casualness to him and his tone expressed and affectionate teasing in his words. “Yeah, but I’ve already got your dress and if you don’t race me you won’t get it back.”
She shook her head, still smiling. Most guys would have gotten a solid slap across the face for the things he was doing and saying, but there was something about the glimmer in his eyes, the smile on his face, that made it acceptable. She liked him, wanted to get to know him better, to find out what gave him that sparkle, that confidence. Stephanie already knew she was going to kiss him. “I guess I don’t have a choice.”
Dylan tossed the dress to Chandler and ran toward the shoreline, shedding his sandals on the way. “You better hurry up, I’m a like a fish in the water.”
Stephanie dropped her towel and took off after him. She could hear Amanda laughing behind her.
Amanda spoke to Chandler. “We’re staying.”
Early afternoon became late afternoon and late afternoon became early evening. Stephanie kissed Dylan goodbye on the beach and a few feet away, Amanda did the same with Chandler. Amanda drove them home at high speed, but they both knew they were late and likely in for it. Though neither mentioned it, the smiles on their faces said that the consequences, at least in the moment, were worth the fun they had during the day.
The sun had completely set by the time Amanda turned into the driveway. They dragged their feet on the way to the front door and were surprised not to find their parents waiting on the other side with folded arms and cross expression of disapproval beaming from their faces. Instead, their mother, in the process of setting the dinner table, merely turned her head toward them as Stephanie closed and locked the door.
Mrs. Pickett said, “You’re just in time for dinner. Go wash up.”
Stephanie and Amanda looked at each other. Their mother’s tone hadn’t even sounded annoyed. They quickly went upstairs and washed up in the bathroom before returning to the dinner table.
Dinner was served soon after. Their parents conversed about their respective days and asked about the girls’ time at the lake. Stephanie and Amanda shared everything except for the boys they’d met. After dinner, they helped their mother clean up and then watched a couple hours television before going off to bed. Stephanie knew if Amanda hadn’t been with her, she’d have come home to nothing but trouble. It was nice to get away with being lazy for a day. She fell asleep smiling, thinking about Dylan and the lake.
Amanda entered Stephanie’s room the next morning as Stephanie was finishing getting dressed. She plopped herself down on her sister’s bed and shook her head at the white shorts and purple tee outfit Stephanie had donned.
“Dylan’s going to be disappointed with that outfit,” Amanda said.
Stephanie leaned her back against the dresser and blinked at her sister. “After yesterday, I’m pretty certain every outfit I own will disappoint him,” she said. Her face pinkened a touch at the memory of the previous day’s events. “Besides, I’m not pushing my luck with Mom and Dad. I’ve got a bag to unpack and laundry to do.”
Amanda said, “Well, I certainly can’t show up without you.”
Stephanie laughed. “Then maybe you should clean your room and then we can meet up with Dylan and Chandler later on this afternoon.”
“Did you see them?” Amanda asked, leaning forward in Stephanie’s direction on the bed. She slapped the rumpled comforter. “They aren’t going to hold out for us if we don’t show.”
Stephanie shook her head, smiling. “The faster we get our chores done, the sooner we can go and see.”
Amanda leaned back against the headboard. “You sound more like Nicole every time you come back from school.”
Stephanie nodded. “And I behave more like you the longer I’m at home.”
Amanda laughed. “I don’t know, I wouldn’t have taken my bikini off whether I lost that race or not.”
Stephanie blushed outright. “A bet’s a bet. You have to honor your commitments even when they aren’t exactly what you’d prefer.”
Amanda tossed a pillow at Stephanie and giggled. “You loved every minute of him staring at you and we both know it.”
Stephanie tossed the pillow back onto her bed. “Come on, don’t want to be late for breakfast.”
They went downstairs together. The typical morning breakfast aromas tickled their noses as they made their way into the kitchen. Their mother stood at the sink, cleaning dishes. The table had already been cleared and the coffee pot was no longer steaming. Stephanie and Amanda looked at each other. Maybe they hadn’t gotten away with not doing their chores.
Mrs. Pickett turned toward the girls without shutting off the water or stopping her cleaning. “Your father’s waiting for you out in the shed.”
Stephanie stared at the back of her mother’s head. Her mother’s casual tone could have just as easily been conversing about the weather. Stephanie knew her own tone of voice would carry significantly more emotion if she were to open her mouth and say anything at all. Everything had seemed fine at dinner and even afterward. There had been no hint of trouble at all from either of her parents. A trip to her father’s shed was definitely trouble.
Amanda said, “We’ll get our stuff done this morning, before lunch time. You’ll see.”
Mrs. Pickett turned from the sink again. A taunting smile spread across her face. “I’m very much aware of exactly what you girls will be doing this morning and when you get back from the shed I’ll be seeing two very hard working girls, unless of course you want to take another trip out to the shed.”
Amanda’s mouth gaped open.
Stephanie knew better than to argue. She took hold of her sister’s arm and led her out the back door. They walked across the grass toward the familiar red and white shed without saying a word to each other. The door was open and they could hear their father inside, undoubtedly rearranging tools while he waited. A glance to the left, right and straight ahead, revealed the neighbor’s yards to be devoid of people.
At least we won’t have an audience, Stephanie thought as they walked up the ramp and into the foreboding shadows of the shed.
Mr. Pickett looked at his two daughters as they stopped just inside the shed. “You promised to finish your chores before dinner yesterday and you broke that promise,” he said.
Stephanie looked down at her feet and mumbled, “Sorry.”
Amanda said, “We’ll take care of it now and it won’t happen again for the rest of the summer. I promise.”
Mr. Pickett shook his head. “You’ve already proven your promises don’t mean a thing, but when we’re finished out here, I think you’ll both be a little better motivated to keep your promises in the future.”
Amanda nodded. “I’m better motivated now, can I go do my chores?”
Mr. Pickett swallowed any laughter that might have escaped his throat and did his best to look stern and unhappy. “No,” he said. “What you can do, both of you can do, is strip down to your birthday suits, fold your clothes neatly into the two baskets behind me and wait outside with your hands on your heads and noses planted against the house-side shed wall.”
Stephanie and Amanda bit on their lower lips and exchanged a look of pure misery.
Mr. Pickett stepped into the doorway and paused, looking at his daughters. “I’ll be back in five minutes and I better see two naked girls out here or I just might find some extra outdoor chores for you to be doing in your birthday suits.”
Stephanie lifted her purple tee off over her head and walked toward the workbench with the baskets sitting on top. She folded the tee along the way and set it inside the basket on her arrival. Her hands reached up behind her and worked on unfastening the clips holding her bra in place. She glanced in Amanda’s direction.
Amanda stared into the empty door space where their father had last stood before leaving them alone.
Stephanie said, “You better hurry. I don’t think he’s in a mood to be challenged.”
Amanda blinked and turned her head in Stephanie direction. “Did he say ‘extra outdoor chores’?”
Stephanie nodded. She laid her folded bra on top of her shirt and knelt down to untie her shoes. “Yeah.”
“As in,” Amanda said, “we’re going to be doing outdoor chores anyway, but he could add more?”
Stephanie pulled off her shoes and socks. “At least it’s not the fourth of July. Remember that year Nicole was passing out sodas and picking up trash during the block party.”
Amanda’s eyes grew wider. Nicole had been stubbornly refusing to help their mother in preparations because she wanted to spend the morning with Todd. They’d just been dating then. It might have been the first time Todd had seen Nicole without clothes. Then again, it might not have been, but it was definitely the first time he’d seen her bottom the color of a ripe tomato cause he hadn’t been able to stop staring at it the whole night.
Stephanie stood up and and unbuttoned her shorts. She pushed them down her legs with her panties and stepped out of them as soon as they touched the floor. Her hands went to work folding. She looked at Amanda, still standing fully dressed next to the shed’s entrance. “We’re in this together you know. Hurry up or do you want me to rip that dress off you?”
Amanda rolled her eyes. She reached up behind her hair and untied the straps of her halter dress. It fell to her waist and she pushed it to the floor from there. She stepped out of the garment and picked it up, folding it sloppily as she crossed the shed floor to the bench. Her hands laid the dress to rest in the empty basket sitting next to the one filled with Stephanie’s clothes. She quickly untied the top and bottom of her bikini and laid it on top, followed a moment later by the flip flop sandals taken off her feet.
Looking at Stephanie, she said, “Happy?”
Stephanie shook her head. “Not even close. Next time you try to convince me to ignore my chores in favor of a good time I’m going to say no.”
Amanda walked toward the shed’s door. “You always say no.”
Stephanie followed her sister outside and joined her, hands on head, nose to the red painted wall of the shed. “Next time, I’ll mean it.”
Mr. Pickett returned after a few minutes of them standing against the shed wall. It felt like he’d been gone at least half an hour, although Stephanie knew it probably hadn’t been any longer than the five minutes he’d promised. He left them standing and went inside the shed where they could hear him maneuvering the sawhorse into position near the shed’s entrance.
When he came back out, he grabbed Stephanie by the elbow and led her away from the wall, toward the entrance. “If you can’t set a good example for your sister any other way, you’ll do it here by showing her what happens, even to 22 year olds, when they don’t behave.”
Stephanie had the good sense to stay quiet and follow her father without resistance. She bent over the sawhorse, grabbing the front legs and spreading her own legs to the outer edges of the back legs. The position was humiliating, but it wasn’t meant to be enjoyed. She heard her father take the strap down from its hook on the shed wall behind her. She felt its cool smoothness tickle her buttocks as he took aim.
The strap cut through the air in silence. It impacted with a loud snap enhanced by her father’s experienced skill at making his disappointment not only heard, but felt.
She blinked and breathed through the initial sting. It was only going to get worse.
He raised the strap high in the air and brought it down with an even louder snap on impact.
Stephanie yelped. Two strokes and her butt was already on fire. She’d gone soft while away at school.
He brought the strap down three times in such quick succession all Stephanie could do was hold onto the sawhorse and breathe. Her legs kicked up slightly and the sawhorse slid forward, squeaking on the floor. Tears formed in her eyes and spilled into mini puddles on the wood planks below her. Her hair bounced up and down from the floor as she sniffled.
The strap lashed down again. Its snap echoed in the tiny shed as the ripples of its force cascaded their way through her body. The burning sensation emanating from her buttocks grew in the seconds of silent aftermath. She felt the warm breeze from outside flutter over her tender flesh and squeezed her eyes closed. Every reflex demanded she jump to her feet and cradle her buttocks in her hands.
Her father swung the strap six times fast. She cried out on the second, third, fourth and fifth. On the sixth, she howled. Each touch of the leather connected with the tender flesh joining her thighs and buttocks. The fiery sting had a water works of tears pouring from her eyes. Her hands tightened their grip on the sawhorse legs. She breathed ragged, fighting for control over her most basic instincts.
The strap sliced through the hot air thrice more.
Stephanie’s legs kicked up in the air. The sawhorse pivoted forward, its rear legs briefly lifting into the air before slamming back down onto the floor with a loud thud. Her breathing increased in its raggedness, punctuated by barely suppressed sobs. The mini-puddles of tears beneath her turned into mini-lakes. Dylan wasn’t worth it. No boy was worth it.
Mr. Pickett held the strap beside his leg and stepped back from the sawhorse, giving him a better view of Stephanie’s face. “It never fails,” he said, “within hours of you coming home from school you’ve earned yourself a spanking. I’m starting to think I should send you off to school with a blistered butt and give you another one as soon as you get off the plane. How would you like that?”
Stephanie let go of the sawhorse long enough to wipe the falling tears from her eyes. The clearer upside down view of her father’s face did nothing to make his question easier to answer. She spoke in a soft, squeaky voice. “I wouldn’t.”
He nodded. “Your behavior over the rest of the summer is going to make the decision and right now I’m leaning toward your traveling day starting right here in the shed.”
There didn’t seem to be a question to answer but he seemed to be waiting for something from her. “I’m sorry,” she said, hoping an apology was what he wanted.
“I thought you were old enough to be given a little latitude in how you go about meeting your responsibilities. You wanted to go to the lake and do your chores later in the day. I didn’t stop you, but apparently I should have made you do your chores because you simply took advantage of the leeway and didn’t do them at all.”
“I’m sorry,” she said.
He shook his head. “You’re only sorry because your butt is on fire. You didn’t even mention your chores last night or whether or not you planned on doing them today since you didn’t do what you’d promised yesterday. Your mother figures you two planned on another outing today and I think she was right.”
Stephanie sniffled and wiped at her eyes with the back of her hand. “I was going to do them today, I swear. I didn’t have any other plans.”
Her father nodded his head. “Of course you were. Why would I doubt you? You only lied to me yesterday morning.”
“I really was,” Stephanie said. Her voice squeaked like a mouse.
“If it’s true,” he said, “the good news is I won’t be disrupting your plans because you are going to do your chores today. I’m just going to make sure you aren’t tempted to sit around and be lazy.”
He stepped forward and laid the strap gently against her buttocks. “You’ve got fifteen more coming,” he said, “and if you kick up one more time, you’ll have thirty more before you go to bed tonight. Understood?”
Stephanie swallowed her tears. “Yes, sir.”
The strap lifted off her buttocks. She squeezed her feet against the outer legs of the sawhorse and gripped hold of the front legs with all her might. Her butt quivered in anticipation of the next touch of the leather. She closed her eyes. It was all Amanda’s fault.
Her father slapped the strap down against her tender cheeks. Tears flowed from behind her closed eyes. The strap came down again and again. Her weight bucked against the sawhorse causing its wooden legs to scrape forward on the wood floor. The strap struck again. She yelped in response to the lightning sting shooting outward through her body. Ripples of the impact jiggled her flesh and accentuated the sensation of the warm breeze tickling her naked skin. The strap connected again, striping across the center of her burning buttocks. She yelped and cried.
The leather licked across the sensitive flesh between her buttocks and thighs. She tossed her head as far back as she could. Her mouth and eyes shot open. The strap struck twice more in the same place. She howled. Tears poured from her eyes, running down her cheeks and dropping in puddles on the floor below. The strap kissed the sensitive flesh again and again. She howled and sobbed.
He brought the strap down across the center of her buttocks. She cried. The strap impacted the lower curvature of her butt. She yelped and bucked against the sawhorse. He striped the leather across the center of her butt again. Her tears splashed onto the floor and her chest heaved in and out with the ragged breathing of her distress. Her father swung the strap at the lower curvature of her buttocks and connected the leather against her flesh in a flurry of three fast strokes.
Stephanie laid heavily against the support of the sawhorse. Tears poured from her eyes. Her butt burned and stung. She knew it was over, but she dared not rise up and grab hold of her bottom before her father allowed it. The discomfort would dissipate over the length of the day, but it would remain tender well into the evening hours. She loosened her grip on the legs of the sawhorse in anticipation of the order to stand.
Her father hung the strap back on its hook. “I hope this is the last spanking I have to give you this summer.”
Stephanie sniffled. She agreed with the sentiment, but dared not say it aloud.
“Stand up,” he said. “Go join your sister outside and don’t even think about rubbing. I want the memory of this spanking to last you all summer long.”
Stephanie pushed herself up off the sawhorse and immediately raised her hands to rest on her head. It was less tempting to rub at her buttocks that way. She walked outside without meeting her father’s gaze even for an instant. Amanda remained exactly as she had been before. Stephanie resumed her place next to her, pressing the tip of her nose against the red painted wood. Her skin prickled in the warm breeze and she suppressed a shudder while sniffling back tears. The horrible thought of a neighbor staring out a window at her crossed through her mind and no matter how much she tried to steer her thoughts away from it she couldn’t shake the feeling she was being watched.
Mr. Pickett stepped outside the shed. “Amanda,” he said and she turned her head to look in his direction, “inside and over the sawhorse.”
Amanda left her position beside Stephanie and disappeared inside the shed. Their father followed. Stephanie stared at the red wood in front of her nose. The breeze rustled the grass. Birds chirped in the nearby trees, obviously having a better day than Stephanie or her sister. She wondered what was taking so long for things to begin and then she heard it, the unmistakable clap of leather snapping against flesh. Amanda yelped right from the start.
Stephanie focused on the repetitive noise and its reliable rhythm. It distracted her from the feeling of being watched and the burning sting emanating from her naked buttocks. She counted ten strokes before her father paused to give his lecture. Her ears burned with the effort to hear, but it was hopeless. All she could make out was the murmur of her father’s voice and the squeaky tones of her sister’s replies. She doubted any of it was much different than what had transpired between herself and her father only minutes before.
The strapping resumed. Stephanie counted fifteen strokes before it stopped again. Long minutes drug by until Amanda emerged from the shed. She was naked, of course, her butt practically glowed even in the sunlight, and her face was streaked with still falling tears. Like Stephanie, Amanda walked with her hands planted on the top of her head. She parked herself back in the same spot and pressed her nose to the shed wall.
Mr. Pickett emerged from the shed after putting the sawhorse back into its storage spot. He closed the shed door and snapped the padlock closed leaving the girls without any doubt that they weren’t going to be dressing anytime soon.
“Stephanie,” he said and she turned her head to look at him, “you’re going to go inside, unpack your suitcase, put it away in the garage, do your laundry, and give your bedroom a thorough cleaning. Understood?”
Stephanie nodded. “Yes, sir.”
He turned his gaze on Amanda. “Amanda,” he said and she turned to look at him, “you’re going to go inside and give your room a thorough cleaning and then you’re going to clean the bathroom you share with your sister. Is that understood?”
Amanda nodded. “Yes, sir.”
He nodded and widened his gaze to include both of them. “When you’re done with your chores, you’re going to come right back out here and stand just like you have been until your mother calls you in for dinner. Depending on how quickly and completely you do your chores, I’ll decide whether you get your clothes back after dinner or we do this whole thing all over again tomorrow morning. Understood?”
Stephanie and Amanda nodded. “Yes, sir.”
He nodded his head toward the house. “Get going and don’t let me catch you dawdling.”
They dropped their hands from the heads and ran toward the house.