Or is she?
As a Geography teacher newly appointed to the school, Jennifer had heard a few stories about the Principal’s firm hand. She had always thought that only applied to the students at the Academy, and she did value a clear, enforced behaviour policy. It just made the job easier. So when she was summoned to the Headmaster’s office, she thought nothing of it.
When she got in the office, he was sitting behind his large, oaken desk. Besides a monitor and keyboard, the desk was empty, save for a mean-looking, straight ratan cane. It was at that moment that she realised that she might be in trouble. She cleared her throat, uneasy.
“You wanted to see me?” she asked, timidly.
“Close the door, miss Hill,” was all he said.
“Certainly… What is this about?” she asked again, doing as she had been told.
He pointed to his screen.
“I’ve had very… Interesting emails from parents,” he said.
“I don’t follow…”
The headmaster pivoted his screen around to show her exactly what he meant. On the screen was a single picture. She blushed and murmured a small oh my God as she covered her mouth in horror.
It was a picture of herself, in her classroom, bending over to pick a fallen pen off the ground. Not only was her skirt riding up, it was plain to see that she wasn’t wearing any underwear.
“I don’t think I need to tell you how unacceptable that is, miss Hill?”
“Oh, no, Sir, I… I never meant…”
“To expose yourself to a class of young, impressionable teenagers?”
“I… I am so sorry, I don’t know how that happened…”
“You don’t know how you came to work with no underwear on?”
“Well?” he snapped.
“It’s more comfortable, Sir…”
He shook his head.
“Well, as you can imagine, parents are less than impressed, and I have many calling for your immediate dismissal, at least.”
“Oh no! Please, sir! It was an accident! I… I would never…”
“As much as I would like to believe that, I think you know I can’t let this go without consequences.”
She looked down at the cane. She felt dread running down her spine.
“I’m sure you’re well aware of the kind of punishments that we apply at this school.”
“I think you can agree that we can’t have a lower standard for our teachers than we do for our students.”
“No sir but…”
“I would consider your objections carefully, miss Hill. You are on thin ice as it is.”
She looked down, her cheeks crimson with embarrassment. She said nothing.
“There, much better,” he said. “Now, miss Hill, are you wearing any today?”
“Underwear, miss Hill! Underwear!”
She bit her lip and looked away. He threw his arms up in despair.
“Well I would say that shows the absolute need for discipline! Get your skirt down, right this instant.”
“Would you rather I invited the board of Governors and some parents to attend?”
“No, no! Please!”
“Your skirt, young lady.”
She slowly, awkwardly pulled her skirt down and crossed her hands in front of her, exposed and ashamed.
He walked up to her.
“Since you like to expose yourself, I think we should go one step further.” He grabbed her shirt and ripped it open, exposing her large, round breasts. She whimpered, tears in her eyes.
“Go bend over the desk!” he barked, and she did so.
Her legs quivered as he took the cane and whipped it a few times through the air. The noise was already terrifying. She closed her eyes. He applied the cane to her behind and tapped her naked cheeks a few times.
Then she screamed.
And she screamed.
And she screamed again.
Without a thought for who could hear, the secretary, any waiting parent or teacher, she screamed.
She screamed and she cried heavy, ugly tears.
She screamed and she begged.
She screamed and she sobbed loudly.
She screamed and trembled, arching her back.
She screamed and kicked her feet, gritted her teeth, screwed her eyes shut.
She screamed and prayed for it to just end.
And it did. Ten strokes, that was all it had taken to reduce her to a trembling, begging, sniffling mess. The headmaster grabbed her arm and, without a word, lead her to the corner of his office.
“Arms behind your back,” he said matter-of-factly.
She did as he commanded. He adjusted her hands and rested the cane over her half-bent fingers. She was still quietly sobbing and said nothing.
“Now, miss Hill… Do you think my word that you have been properly disciplined will be enough for the parents, or will they need photographic evidence as well?”
She looked back at me, her crimson bottom almost glowing in the subdued lighting. Tears were still rolling silently down her cheeks, even now that the sobbing had stopped. She had her hands against the wall, her tender, round, and bruised bottom on display. The cane strokes had left clear marks on it, straights line on the curves of her buttocks, whiter at their center where the rattan had struck. I could almost still hear the dry, cruel crack of it against her pale skin, a fraction of a second before her cries of pain.
She had not protested when she had been told to bend over the back of the sofa, her hands flat on the cushions, her pale orbs high up in the air. She had shivered and moaned as I had caressed her with the cane —a prelude to the pain to come— but she hadn’t said a word.
The cane had risen and fallen again and again, coming down hard, criss-crossing her behind in fiery lines of pain. She was in tears by the second stroke, bawling by the sixth, stomping her feet in between each hard stroke in the vain hope that it would make the burn go away. She had clenched her cheeks, shut her eyes, gritted her teeth, and withered the storm like the good girl she knew I wanted her to be.
By decree of his majesty the King, let it be know that Her Majesty the Royal Princess Adélaïde of France is to receive 30 strokes of the cane on her buttocks for her unruly behaviour during the reception with His Majesty Ferdinand VI, King of Spain.
Her father, His Majesty Louis XV, wishes it to be known throughout the Realm that he cherishes his renewed relations with the Crown of Spain and that none shall sully them.
The event will take place this coming Saturday in the Gardens of Versailles at three in the afternoon. Light food and refreshment shall be available for the honourable members of the court.