The Sacred Band Ch. 07bypotsherd©
Laura finds her Pasha - part 2.
This is a good time to tell about my toys, stored for years in an old canvas travelling case on top of the wardrobe at Aunt Hilda's.
Three years or so before I met Philip I had been wandering down Wharf Street looking idly in the shop windows. I came to a shabby small shop called Geo. Abbott, surgical supplies, and, glancing into the dusty window, I saw a selection of puzzling surgical goods including hernia trusses, flasks and mysterious lengths of rubber tube with nozzles.
Then I froze.
Hanging almost out of sight on the corner of the window was a long, black, sinister two-tailed leather tawse. I stared at it open-mouthed for some time and then, unable to get up the courage to go into the shop, I finally turned and walked dispiritedly away.
I suppose I stood and stared that tawse three or four times in the weeks that followed, to be frank, I cycled the twelve miles into Leicester a couple of times just to look at it again. Finally I thought of the young Queen Elizabeth's riposte to Sir Walter Ralegh:
If thy heart fail thee, do not climb at all.
Just as I nerved myself up to pushing open the door, an elderly lady, rather fat and shabbily dressed with grey hair in a bun, came waddling out of the shop and spoke to me.
"Coom in and have a coop of tea me duck".
I followed her in to the ill-lit, dusty shop. There were two cups of steaming black tea on the counter, a sugar bowl and a milk-jug sat on a small round metal tray alongside.
"Hope you like it strong. Sugar and milk there if you tek 'em".
"Thank you", I said weakly adding condensed milk from a Nestles tin to my tea and stirring.
"I know what you're about me duck. I remember only too well how you feel".
She reached down the tawse and placed it in my hands. I stroked the smooth, stiff, fine-grained leather sensuously. Someday, I knew, I should put it in the hands of my Pasha.
"Mrs. Abbott", she volunteered, "but you just call me Ada."
As we drunk our tea, Ada told me that she came from Ilkeston, and that she had just gone into service there when the Boer War broke out.
She knew that she was different from the other servant-girls she knew. Their stories about the boys they walked out with sounded hollow and unreal to her. As she explained it to me, she just kept on waiting for lightning to strike.
Then one Sunday afternoon, she was walking with a friend in the Forest Recreation Ground; a popular place for young men and women to do the monkey walk; when she saw a particular man, and the lightning struck.
He was a wounded soldier, a corporal in the Sherwood Foresters, not long back from South Africa. He looked very deeply tanned; fit and strong until she saw that his left arm was missing from just below the elbow; his empty sleeve pinned up to his tunic He saw her looking at him and they were drawn together like a glass rod and a pith ball. She was sixteen and he was twenty-four. They married a year later, in 1902 and had been together ever since.
"George said on our first walk together that he could see I was a girl who needed a firm hand. I knew just what he meant, and I said,
"Yes, and you look like the man to give it me."
We went to a caff for tea, then we walked, arm in-arm along the canal bank. Then he sat down high up the bank, put me across his knee and gave me a good walloping - of course I had to help him, with him only having one arm. I asked him if he wanted me to take my bloomers down, but he said no; what was in there was his private business, not for every Tom, Dick and Harry to gawp at. Some couples came by and giggled at us as he were doing it – but he didn't mind and no more did I. When I asked him what the walloping was for, he said,
"It's joost to show you that Ah'm tekkin care of you now." That's all he said – but it were more than enough for me.
Now I'll tell you sommut. Them was Victorian times – just; but girls were the same then as they are now. I was wearing my prettiest bloomers with a bit of lace on, and every girl on the monkey walk was doing the same – them as were wearing bloomers at all. We were all waiting for the right man to come along and tek' 'em off us.
"Any road oop; watching you these Saturdays peering my window makes me think that you are another girl who needs a firm hand – is that right Ducks?"
"Yes Ada, I think it is".
"Well, why don't you go and have a look in my back room and see if there's anything there you fancy whilst I tyek the tawse out o' the window."
The back room was at once exciting and deeply sinister. On the back wall hung row of canes, straps and riding crops, including a really frightening lunging whip. There were handcuffs and chains, gags and blindfolds. In the centre of the room stood a whipping bench that looked well used.
My overwhelming thought was that I was no longer alone in the world – there were clearly other people out there who felt like me; women who had their Pashas, men who had their Dark Ladies. Fear fought with happiness within me and happiness won.
When I got home I went to the cupboard under the stairs, and found what I was looking for.
Years before, when they were just starting out in life, Dad had the sort of home cobbling kit that so many families had. A cobblers last a bit like a caltrops, with four different faces, for man's, women's and children's shoes; a pair of Whitcher pincers, a tack hammer or two, some heelball, and what I was after; a complete men's shoe sole of cow-hide, never used; narrow at the heel, wide at the sole and pointed at the toe.
I put everything away tidily, sure that Dad would never look at it again. I carried it to my bedroom, bent over the bed, raised my skirt and gave myself a couple of hefty swats across the bum. God! it stung.
"One, day..." I thought to myself. "One day...".. I hid the tawse and the shoe-sole under my bed, and transferred them to Aunt Hilda's at the first possible moment.
I bought the tawse that day and, over time, went back and bought canes, blindfolds and a pair of shiny chrome handcuffs, keeping them under the bed at Aunt Hilda's. In the shop there were silly handcuffs covered with fur fabric in pastel shades, and blindfolds with lacy trimmings, but I knew straightaway that they were not for me. Somehow they lacked potency.
When I bought my first cane, trying to choose between dragon cane, rattan or just plain bamboo, Ada startled me.
"You could try them out if you like Ducks. I'm sure me Mester would be happy to oblige if thi so wishes. He's tanned the hides of more ladies than you've had hot dinners, but not many as pretty as you."
I can't say that I wasn't tempted; my curiosity was overwhelming, but I knew it was not right. I had to wait for my Pasha.
Note to philologists: Working women of Ada's generation in Leicester and Nottingham would refer to their husbands as 'the mester' as a matter of course. Generally their husbands knew better than to take it too seriously).
Wimbledon - finals day 1955.
After I returned to Ashby from our first afternoon together, Philip and I spoke on the phone almost daily. On the Saturday following my first visit to Philip in Leicester, I was once again on the Leicester bus. Philip was waiting for me at the bus station with the lovely car he called Matilda.
First of all we went to Aunt Hilda's house and I introduced him as a friend who was going to store some bits and pieces for me for a little while. Accepting as always, Aunt Hilda welcomed him in and made us tea and some of her ubiquitous seed-cake, whilst we carried my books and toys down to the car.
When we had got to Philip's house and spent a little time with his Mum, we went upstairs and unpacked my goods. Philip whistled when he read the titles of my books, and turned and grinned at me. For some reason I blushed. Then he unpacked my toys and laid them out on his low, spindle-legged coffee table.
"I've never really tried any of them – I just had to buy them and I take them out and look at them sometimes. The tawse was what I bought first, and it's my favourite. I sometimes used to take it to bed with me at Auntie Hilda's and cuddle it – crazy isn't it?"
"Would you like to try them out?"
I said yes please, rather vacuously, as if I were being offered another slice of seedcake. My mouth had gone totally dry and my forehead beaded with sweat. At last it was going to happen.
Take off your clothes, and come here. I shall put the handcuffs and blindfold on you, then we'll try them out, one after the other."
I stripped off my clothes, folded them over a chair, and tidied my hair in front of the mirror. My little, round, pink-nippled tits jiggled nicely as I brushed my hair, and I knew Philip was looking at my bottom.
Soon he would be giving it some real attention.
I turned around and looked straight at Philip, posing for him, knees bent slightly, keeping my thighs tightly hiding my crotch, like the nude pictures in Lilliput and Men Only. I could see he approved. I walked over to the coffee-table and stood there quietly and waited for him to blindfold and handcuff me.
Of course I had put on the blindfold and the handcuffs before, but not both together. Having them put on me by somebody else had an oddly chilling effect. I felt more then a bit frightened. I trusted Philip completely, but totally relinquishing control made great inroads into my sense of security.
He led me over to the settee, and positioned me there, bottom sticking out knees on the slightly abrasive moquette cushion, and hands holding the back of the settee. I clung on tightly and waited.
"Try to guess which of your toys I am using on your bottom. I'll give you four strokes with each. Every one you guess wrong earns you two more strokes, so concentrate."
The first one was easy. A sort of fipping swish, a burn like fire across my bum that seemed more intense a few second later than when it landed – the riding crop!
"The cane." I called out triumphantly.
"Don't go off half-cocked," said Philip, "there's three more to come."
Three more cracks as the implement – the crop, I'm sure it was the crop – bit into my tender flesh. My whole bum was on fire for a moment or two, then it settled into a hot glow. Philip loosened the handcuffs whilst I felt my bum. It was ridged and furrowed like a midlands landscape.
He cuffed me again.
"Ready for the next one?"
"To hear is to obey, O Pasha". I joked.
The next one landed with a thump that threw me forward. My breath was knocked away for a moment, and the pain was bruising and deep.
"The tawse! My lovely tawse." I shouted. In my I was thrown back into my days at junior school, taking a test and determined to come top of the class.
Three more fierce, thudding, fiery pains as the implement – yes, the tawse - it must be the tawse - seared my flesh. Then it was over.
"Ready for the next one?" he asked again.
"Just a moment please, let me give it a rub." Again he took off the handcuffs to allow me to massage my sore bum. I was asking myself, 'How can something so painful give me such joy?' I found myself giggling as I took up my position and took hold of the back of the sofa and stuck my bottom out again.
Oh God, this is the riding crop – the first one must have been the cane. Another swish, another line of molten fire, fiercer and more concentrated then before.
Maybe this is the cane after all? Or does it feel different because of what had gone before? This time I did not cry out until I had tasted all four strokes and given myself enough time to make a decision.
"I think I was wrong before. That was the cane – the first one was the riding crop", I said triumphantly.
"Wrong". Philip sang out. "That was the riding crop – the first one was the cane."
"Philip", I said laughing, "If I thought you were lying to me just to maltreat my poor bum some more..."
He was laughing too. "Would I do that?" he asked. Truthfully I didn't know, but knowing what a tease he was, I had my suspicions.
He took off the blindfold and I waited whilst he got into position for two more of the cane and two more of the riding crop. This time I watched him swing and saw that, like a good tennis-player he hit through the bum, rather that onto it, to get maximum value for energy output. Nice to see a skilled man at work.
He was right of course. The crop bit deeper, burned more fiercely and the burn lasted longer. I got up, rubbed my bottom and we looked at each other and both burst out laughing.
Then I was in his arms and we kissed, deeper, more fiercely and longer than ever before. My naked body rubbed against the roughness of his clothed one and I was totally content.
"Come across my knees and I'll put some arnica cream on your stripes." He offered.
"Yes, in a minute. But please can I see my bottom first? I want to look at my marks".
Philip obligingly took me into his bedroom. He stood me with my back to the full-length wardrobe mirror, and, just like the hairdresser showing you the back of your hair for approval, he moved around me with a large hand mirror and showed me the long, raised, granular pink weals and the purpling beginnings of bruises on my pink and white bum.
They looked lovely. Philip and I both admired his handiwork. As I hugged him and thanked him, I felt myself weeping a little from pure joy.
A few minutes later I lay over his trousered legs, and gave up my bottom to his attention. He smoothed the cream over and massaged it in, letting his fingers linger in my moist cleft for a moment then back to one buttock and the other. Then I felt his lubricated thumb rubbing round and round my bumhole, and then gently probing for admission.
"Oh ho me hearties! Sits the wind in that quarter?" I asked in my best Long John Silver (Charles Laughton) voice.
"I know a girl who's going to be bumfucked before she's much older. Why not today? The better the day the better the deed".
"All right, but first may I suck you off again. I've only done it once, and you must admit I need the practise.
"Laura, you're a born cocksucker; but how could I stand between an artist and her work?"
Over then next two hours Philip pleasured me in each of the three apertures a man can employ for carnal purposes.
My second poke was an order of magnitude better than the first, and so, I was smugly convinced, were my sucking skills. This time, when he was about to come I pursed my lips tight under the crest of his bell-end, and sucked thirstily; managing to keep most of the sour-salty spunk in my mouth until he had finished coming.
"Is it alright to swallow it?" I asked him with spurious, wide-eyed innocence. In answer, he took me in his arms and kissed me long and deeply, his tongue probing deep in my mouth. What a wonderfully dirty thing to do.
He lay me gently on my back on the table and spread my thighs. He lowered his head and his whole mouth covered my quim. His tongue dived deep and I could feel myself getting wetter and wetter.
After a minute or so, his tongue-tip found my clitoris and wave after wave of pleasure shot through me like tiny electric shocks. Oddly, I felt languorously tired and disoriented, and found myself calling out:
"No, stop Philip. Please stop".
He stopped immediately and straightened his back, looking me straight in the eyes.
"What's the matter Laura – afraid to come?"
"No, darling, of course not. I just want you inside me."
No sooner said than done. Holding my thighs in his two hands, he adjusted my position on the table, and, with one long thrust he was deep in me. My slippery folds embraced him. Like Odysseus's dogs, they recognised their master and welcomed him.
To describe it further would be tedious. Love isn't about engorgement and release, mucous membranes and rings of muscle. It is about lovingly sharing moments of pleasure with someone you feel privileged to be with.
Of course I wasn't afraid of orgasm – it had become one of my life's purposes, and I felt wave after wave of ecstatic pleasure convulse me before Philip withdrew and began to prepare me for my next new experience.
When Philip buggered me, I pushed when told to push, relaxed when told to relax, and breathed long and deep as instructed. I placed myself in his hands, and he was gentle and controlled, but relentless, with the bedside manner of the best family doctor. I passed through a little; not too much; pain as I was stretched wider than I had ever been stretched before.
My main feeling was simple triumph. This was so perverse – so bad and so good. I knew, and glowed inside with the thought, that Philip could be arrested and imprisoned for what he was doing to me, but of course they would never know.
Before he was finished with me the pleasure in my head was superseded by a simple physical pleasure that brought me close to climax.
I lay face-down on the bed, smugly replete and a little bit muscle-weary as he went to the bathroom to wash himself, and returned with a hot soapy flannel to wash me.
He pulled out the towel that he had thoughtfully placed under me before we began, and dried me carefully. I giggled a bit and asked if he was going to dust my bottom with baby powder.
Philip is not a man who reads much for pleasure, although he has a phenomenal memory and he thinks long and deeply about what he does read. He acknowledges, a bit grudgingly, that situations that cannot be expressed in numbers must somehow be expressed in words, but words are, for him, a poor second best.
As I lay there in post-coital relaxation, I told him about one of the footnotes in Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire that went around the sixth form, about the Roman (or was it Byzantine?) Empress who regretted that she had only three altars on which to sacrifice to Venus. He thought about it for a bit and then fell about laughing, and I laughed myself silly to see him laugh.
Then he told me that we were going to have an early evening meal with Denise, so that he could drive me home for ten o'clock. I know I had said that I wanted to meet Denise, but I suddenly thought, 'I know how important Denise is to him. Supposing she doesn't like me; could she persuade Philip not to go out with me any more?'
Before I could stop myself I had voiced the thought.
"But Philip, suppose she doesn't like me?"
"Of course she'll like you, and I want you to like her. But if she doesn't it's not a tragedy – the two of you need never meet again. Denise doesn't choose my girlfriends; I do."
to follow: chapter eight. Joan.
Laura meets Denise in chapter eleven.