Much to Learn: Brave New World

With thanks to Paolo of Wholebean and I

Sarah and Mark’s Story began here

“Before Enlightenment chop wood, carry water.
After Enlightenment chop wood, carry water.”

Slowly, her awareness returned to the room. The television was still prattling on, now discussing the first expedition to the summit of Mount Everest. Fitting again, Sarah thought. How had he managed to select this channel? Did he know? Was he even listening?

When she calmed down enough to start to become restless, Mark released her from his arms and once again seated her across from him, this time allowing her the benefit of the softer mattress for the post-spanking discussion. She tensed as she realized what was coming. She had fostered more anxiety for this moment than she had for the actual spanking. She could barely express her thoughts on this subject when she wasn’t just-spanked and face-to-face with the man responsible for her current state of being. Her thoughts were barely coherent when she was given time to write and edit them. How did he expect her to understand what had just occurred? To express feelings she had not yet processed, never mind named?

He started by asking for her thoughts, simply and directly.

She had so many thoughts! She gaped at him awkwardly for a few moments before she found some words. “It didn’t hurt as much as I was expecting,” she told him. She had so many other more pleasant, thankful things she could have said. Why did she lead with that, she berated herself. She had been taught that feedback was supposed to start with something positive. “It was just a short session, I know, but still. . . I had expected to be more uncomfortable.” More negativity, she grimaced inwardly and fell silent.

“We’ve been at this for nearly an hour,” he told her. Shocked, she glanced at the clock before looking at him quizzically, waiting for the punch line to his little joke. It never came, and instead he showed her his watch as if to confirm the time. “We kicked off at five past seven,” he explained.

How had the time flown so quickly? If asked, she would have said the spanking had lasted ten minutes- maybe. Embarrassed again, she silently looked down at her knees and waited for him to continue. “You needed to feel it for that long, without interruption, to get a sense for it.” he explained. “It is very powerful, what happens between a dominant and a submissive. You simply can’t explain this to anyone who hasn’t experienced it.”

She considered his words. She had been well-prepared, as prepared as it was possible to be. It was different than she had imagined, less intense in many ways than she had anticipated, but it was powerful. It was real.

In the silence after his explanation, he reached down to take her feet in his hands and gently flexed her toes. “You are very tense here; are you all right?”

“Sorry,” she offered, “I kept slipping.”

“My fault there,” he chuckled, “I’m supposed to hold you in place.”

“I tried to relax as much as I could,” she started to explain, remembering his instruction from the previous meeting. He had told her to relax, that it would be easier on both of them. She had no idea if she had managed to do so.

“You were perfectly relaxed,” he said as he held her feet gently, warming them with his hands to ward away the stiffness. She relaxed further, enjoying the intimacy of the moment.

“What were you expecting?” he asked patiently when she didn’t respond.

She stumbled again, mumbling something about having no expectations, which was paradoxically true. For all her research, all her fantasizing, she really did have no idea what this would be like and was well aware of her own ignorance in that regard.

Mark continued mercifully, “You have a lot going on in your head, so many things you’ve read and thought about- no one experience will encompass all that. We can experiment, try something new each time. Tell me where your interests lie, make suggestions. I’ll take care of the rest.” She blushed again, imagining how she could possibly go about making such requests. It certainly wouldn’t be face to face!

“What about you,” she asked to try to give herself time to compose her thoughts before he asked any further questions. “Do you have any feedback for me?”

He was quiet for a moment, thinking. “These are beautiful,” he said, stroking her stockings. “It is a wonderful thing to spank someone, but even more to have this to look at during. It is my favourite, and I am very happy with what you have done for me. You were very beautiful tonight.”

She hadn’t known it was possible to experience relief like this. It had worked. It was alright. She had managed. He was pleased.

Seeing that he wouldn’t be getting any more out of her tonight, he reached for the tawse and handed it to her so she could feel the weight of it- or, rather, feel the weight of it in a different way. He explained why he used it the way he did, the little taps that warmed her bottom and kept her on edge between swats.

He started to explain that it was traditionally used on the hands, and her heart stopped. He had mentioned punishing her hands in their earlier correspondence, and she had tried not to let her disappointment show when this element had not surfaced during their session. She couldn’t explain why this particular punishment held such fascination for her, but when reading the various proposals he had made for their first encounter she had been most excited to find this element was a part of every version of his plan- every version except, unfortunately, the one which had just played out.

“Hold out your hand and I’ll show you.” His words cut through her reverie. Now? After he had said it was over? Had her wishes made her mishear him? Hoping she had heard properly, or perhaps to entice him if she hadn’t, she extended a hand. With an odd feeling of satisfaction, she smiled as he tapped it with the tawse, judging the distance before bringing it down with a sharp smack.

It stung just as it had on her bottom, but more intensely. The experience sent shivers through her as she held her hand steady to receive the next stroke. Again, it was very different that what she had imagined. If anything, her expectations of the pain were most accurate. It stung, though not necessarily in an unpleasant way- at least not yet. She had not expected to be seated while he administered this, and had certainly not expected him to be seated as well, lounging casually in his chair as if to belie the intensity of the experience.

She could not have predicted the incredibly powerful effect it had on her, more powerful than anything that had transpired before. There was a connection in this that they had lacked earlier. After three strokes, he told her to switch hands and he repeated the treatment.

Setting the implement aside, he reached for her reddened hands and held them in his own, running his thumbs over her still-stinging palms. “Tawsed hands, see the difference?” he asked. She blushed and nodded.

“I had originally planned to use the ruler as well. It is quite different,” he said, glancing toward his bag. “If you take three with the ruler on each hand. I’ll give you a few more with the tawse as well.” She nodded, not even bothering to hide or question her eagerness.

She offered her hand again as he retrieve the ruler. She had been imagining wood, but instead he pulled out a whippy plastic implement that appeared to have seen plenty of use. It did indeed feel different, a more concentrated surface sting that was quicker to fade. By the time he had finished with her left hand and picked the tawse back up, the sting had nearly vanished, much to her disappointment.

The tawse changed this. The strokes felt harder before on her already punished hands, and she began to struggle to hold them steady for the last of the strokes. It had become an unpleasant experience, but its power was only enhanced by her discomfort.

When he had finished, he again took her hands in his, rubbing them softly. “There will be a little bit of this every time we meet,” he promised. “It is something that I enjoy immensely, and it appears to have quite an effect on you as well.”

She nodded, and felt tears prick at the corners of her eyes. Clamping down on them, she stared at the floor. She couldn’t fall apart now; he would be alarmed, and she would be in no condition to explain that she was simply relieved, honoured to have found someone who understood, who would explore this with her. She would tell him later once she’d had a chance to compose her thoughts rather than inconsistently spew them all over as she was apt to do in the moment.

He bade her to stand so he could examine her bottom.

“I see you have a few bruises, though not from the strap, these are from my hand.” He sounded rather surprised at his findings. As if to rectify this, he reached for the tawse again and tapped her bottom. He delivered a few final, stinging, swats before pulling her panties back up into position and giving her yet another hug which she received gratefully. He held her for a long moment, his grip loosening only when she finally pushed away.

“I have a bit more time. Would you like to get a drink before I leave?” he asked. She nodded eagerly, and a few minutes later he had gathered his things, she had assembled herself, and the two of them headed down to the lobby.

The beer was cold and refreshing, but their conversation was warm as ever. He spoke of his family, the trials and triumphs that every close-knit group experiences. She was struck again with how much he cared for those around him.

It was as normal a conversation as any, but as he talked, every once in a while a sharp twinge reminded her that she was freshly-spanked for the first time in her life, and she couldn’t keep the smile from her eyes.

All too soon, he set down his empty glass and checked his watch. Before he stood, he studied her closely. “Will you be all right?” he asked earnestly. She could tell from his expression that he was concerned, and although she knew he had obligations, she also knew that he would stay if she asked.

“Yes,” she said as honestly as she could. She had come down from the experience enough to get through the night on her own. For such a big first it had been a relatively gentle and mild experience, and she felt she had recovered sufficiently. She hadn’t, of course, but it would be well into the next day before she began to realize that. It had been a big step, and even without excessive pain, it was a lot to process. He would help her through this, in the same way he had helped her to this point. With a final parting embrace, he disappeared into the night.

She slept well that night, awakening just before checkout to hastily dress and round up her belongings before leaving. As she stepped out into the rain, she was disappointed to realize that her large pink umbrella was nowhere to be found. As much as she hated the thing and the awkwardness if caused, she needed it; it was a part of her. Realizing that she must have left it at the pub the night before, she began the soggy trek back.

As she entered the pub, she looked around. It was familiar by now, but the significance of the place struck her. This was where she had made her decision, this is where she had committed. This is where she had supposedly changed forever, even though she didn’t feel particularly changed at that moment, just drippy.

Approaching the all-but-deserted bar, she asked, “Did anyone leave a large pink umbrella here last night?” The barman disappeared off to check, but soon returned bearing only an apology and a promise to keep an eye out should it turn up.

She was taken aback. It was hers. As much as she hated the thing, she needed it. It was gawky and awkward, but it fit her. Before she could give voice to these thoughts, she reconsidered. Perhaps this was something she could leave behind. With a quick thanks to the barman, she lifted her hood and stepped back out into the rain, tripping over the threshold in the process.

To be continued

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