Castlebridge Hall Conspiracies.
The autumn wind was blowing hard around the ancient eaves of Castlebridge Hall; whistling in the chimney pots, rattling the panes of the upstairs windows and whipping the piles of newly fallen leaves into dancing columns in the eddies formed in the corners of the Hall’s wings. The venerable poplars lining the drive to the front facade swayed alarmingly in the powerful gusts and white fluffy clouds were driven frantically across a blue autumnal sky, occasionally occluding the sun, and casting racing shadows to flit over the parklands and countryside about the Hall. In spite of the strong wind, it was a day to cherish; a day when the air seemed clear and the autumn hues seemed vivid and sharply defined. You might perhaps have had to hold on to your hat or clutch your skirt about your knees and raise your voice against the note of the gale but it was nevertheless a day on which it felt good to be out of doors with the wind in your hair and feel alive.
But the rushing wind had little effect on the solid masonry of Castlebridge Hall and, within its massive walls, the gale was but a distant murmur and a low whistling in the fireplaces. In the old great library of the Hall the wind outside was barely even that and scarcely touched the sombre reverent quietude of that great formal chamber of sober study and reflection. Indeed the only noticeable sounds in the library at that moment were the ticking of the library clock and the soft whimpers from the young chambermaid kneeling on a bench facing the wall with her hands on her head.
The reasons for this young lady’s quiet sobbing and evident distress were not hard to discern. Her skirt and petticoat were raised above her waist and tucked into position. Her knickers were folded neatly on a nearby table and her exposed buttocks and backs of her thighs were red and swollen with livid crimson welts. Seated at a large desk a few feet away, Thomas Greenwood, the Hall’s majestic butler, was making an entry into a large leather bound ledger in front of him. This imposing tome was the most feared book in the entire library and one in which nobody desired to have their name inscribed, for it was the Hall’s punishment register; the record of all formal disciplinary measures carried out in the Hall. Greenwood was writing carefully in his neat precise hand. It was his solemn duty to record that Penny Wainwright of the housekeeping department had been found guilty of negligence and wanton carelessness, endangering the safety of other members of the household and blatant dishonesty when confronted with the evidence of her misdeeds. It was his further duty to record that, as a result of her behaviour, the said young lady had been sentenced to, and received, fifty strokes of the cane on her bare backside.
The great library was the usual forum for disciplinary inquiry and the administration of formal punishments at Castlebridge Hall and it was well equipped to serve those functions. There was a large desk before which any suspect was obliged to formally present themself and account for their conduct before a senior staff member or panel. Should their guilt be established, their explanations judged to be inadequate and they be unfortunate enough to have a sentence of formal punishment passed upon them, then all the necessary tools and items of furniture required for the execution of that punishment lay readily to hand.
Not least among these items was the library’s ancient and much feared caning stool. This massive oak stool with its restraining straps on its legs and the broad leather strap across its top for the securing of the waist was the item of furniture that poor little Penny Wainwright had, in the last half hour, become so intimately acquainted with. It was quiet in the library now perhaps but just a little earlier it had been anything but. Strapped firmly down over the stool, with her toes clear of the ground, Penny had screamed loud and long as Greenwood had applied the long cane firmly to her naked bottom and the backs of her legs. Now, as was customary, she was obliged to remain kneeling motionlessly on the bench against the wall, with her beaten rear exposed, to absorb the lesson of her punishment and to reflect upon her conduct for a minimum of thirty minutes.
Greenwood finished his entry in the punishment register and picked up a smaller file that lay next to it. It was Penny’s own personal disciplinary and conduct record. These files were a relatively recent innovation in the Hall. In the summer Greenwood and other senior staff members had become increasingly concerned with the falling standards of diligence and application to their work of the Hall’s small army of serving girls and housemaids. When Lord Castlebridge himself had taken Greenwood to task on the matter he had decided to act decisively to arrest the erosion of the work ethic in the household.
As an immediate consequence of that decision four of the worst offenders had been ordered to the library and birched to set an example to their colleagues. It had been a memorable day at the Hall. The punishment register recorded that Alicia Taunton, Betty Clark and Magdalena Alvares had each received fifty strokes of the birch switch at the birching post while Charlotte Carlson, as the most persistent transgressor, had been obliged to suffer seventy five.
The day stood out in the Hall’s collective memory not only because of the birching administered to the four young ladies but also because it was on the same day that Lord Castlebridge had sentenced his own wife to fifty strokes of the cane for foolishly squandering seven thousand pounds on the horses at Ascot. There had been workmen in the library at that time so Greenwood, as the Hall’s official disciplinarian, had been obliged to administer Her Ladyship’s caning in his pantry. To complete what had proved to be a remarkable week, only a few days later, Brenda Brideshead, the beautiful but somewhat foolish wife of one of the junior partners in Lord Castlebridge’s business emporium had had her name entered into the punishment register as well. For her criminal indiscretion leading to considerable financial loss to His Lordship’s business she had been strapped naked to the very stool so recently vacated by Penny Wainwright and received the severe sentence of one hundred strokes of the cane.
The immediate effects of this swift application of discipline had been gratifying and there’d been a noticeable tightening of standards about the Hall. Greenwood and his senior colleagues however had not been content to rest upon the fruits of this immediate improvement however. Unless constant vigilance was maintained it was all too likely that the domestic staff would retire into complacency and their slip shod habits would begin to re-emerge. In order to prevent such an eventuality Greenwood had initiated a policy of strict surveillance and monitoring. Thus each young lady of the staff had now a personal file. At the end of each day they were to have their file signed by their superior and the standards of their work and conduct for the day noted. These files would then be examined when each girl was presented for a formal review three or four times a year. Should their record have proved exemplary over the interim since their last review then they could expect to be rewarded with a bonus or promotion. If however their record was less than satisfactory then they would be punished.
The system had shown much promise since its inauguration. Some girls had indeed improved beyond recognition. Most notable of these was Charlotte Carlson, the girl who had received such a severe birching in the summer. The seventy five lashes she had endured must have had a most salutary effect on this young lady for her behaviour and deportment since had been blemishless and she had displayed admirable qualities of hard work and attention to her duties since. Charlotte had had her review just the week before and it had been the opinion of the review panel that, should she maintain her reformed standards up to her next review, she should be recommended for promotion and the subsequent augmentation of her salary that would entail.
In other cases however the results had not shown the same improvement. Two days before, Helinka Piotrowski had had her review and her persistent lack of punctuality and tardiness had been evident from her file. It had earned her thirty strokes of the cane and a severe warning that if things did not improve over the next two months she would be facing the birch. And then of course there was Penny Wainwright.
Greenwood opened Penny’s file with a sigh. Penny was due for her next review in ten days and, unless there was some remarkable change around in that time, she would be back in here for another thrashing. This latest episode was just one more incident in Penny’s woeful record. She had been caned back in August for carelessness leading to the breakage of a valuable item. There had also been several instances of her misconduct being dealt with within her department with informal punishments that were nevertheless recorded in her dossier. She had twice been strapped for laziness by her head housekeeper and on another occasion been paddled by the Head Gardener for sneaking off for a smoke in one of his sheds. Altogether there were far too many negative remarks in her file and this last misdeed was just the latest in a sorry line of her misconduct.
She’d broken one of the vacuum cleaners through foolish carelessness and, fearing punishment, had failed to report the breakage and tried to conceal her part in it. The machine had been in a most dangerous condition as a result of her action and the Hall’s head of maintenance had expressed the opinion that it was a wonder that the next person to use it hadn’t been electrocuted. Fifty strokes had been the minimum Greenwood could have awarded her under the circumstances and, judging by the story told by her personal file, it was not the end of her troubles.
Greenwood glanced at the young lady still snivelling against the wall and shook his head grimly. The welts from the cane across her rear were starting to turn purple and she was squirming slightly from the pain still throbbing in her nether portions. She still had another ten minutes to remain in her present position. After that she would be allowed to recover her knickers, adjust her dress and be dismissed. Then, unless there was an enormous improvement to be seen, her bottom would have ten days to heal before her review and the administration of its next corrective measures. Greenwood had already decided that, failing such an improvement, he would recommend a severe lesson with the birch as a means of reforming Miss Wainwright’s unacceptable record of conduct.
Whilst the unfortunate Penny Wainwright was ruing the day in Castlebridge Hall’s library, another young lady was already regarding her own day with increasing trepidation, many miles away, outside Lord Castlebridge’s city office. His Lordship, seated behind his imposing mahogany desk in his office was alerted to the presence of his young visitor by his beautiful secretary Emilie. After her recognisable and private knock on his office door she glided in with all the predatory feline sensuality that was characteristic of her. Her tight skirt and loose fitting blouse clung to a frame of extraordinary loveliness and her long shapely legs were enclosed in dark stockings. She had rather more buttons open on her blouse than were really called for and she was flaunting the diamond earrings he had bought for her when she’d accompanied him on their last overseas business trip together. Emilie was more than just a sensual siren and His Lordship’s mistress however. She was also a highly efficient secretary, important in the running of Lord Castlebridge’s city office and she ruled her little empire within the business with Machiavellian cunning.
Lord Castlebridge glanced up at her. “Ah! Are those the Pembrooke files you’re carrying Emilie?”
“Capital! Shove ‘em in my in tray and I’ll take a look at them after lunch. Has the report from Allied Textiles arrived yet?”
“Not yet sir.”
“Well make sure you bring them to me as soon as they arrive Emilie.”
“Of course sir. Will you be taking lunch at your club?”
“Probably yes Emilie.”
Emilie lowered her voice seductively. “And this evening....?”
“I shall be driving home to the Hall Emilie.”
Emilie pouted sulkily. “You could always come over to my apartment sir and let me cook dinner for you.”
Lord Castlebridge shook his head. “I can’t do that Emilie. I promised my wife I’d be back early this evening.”
Emilie tossed her hair back in a huff. “Hmmph! I’m sure your wife can find her own little amusements to keep her occupied while you spare some time for me!”
Lord Castlebridge smiled to himself. There was little love lost between his wife and his secretary and Emilie’s oblique allusion to his wife’s “little amusements” was not lost on him. Emilie was quite well aware of his wife’s clandestine leisure activities. “That’ll do Emilie.” He admonished her. “Perhaps next week we’ll have an evening together. Was there anything else?”
“Yes. Young Victoria Partridge just arrived for her monthly report.”
Lord Castlebridge frowned. There was a sadistic streak to Emilie and her slight emphasis on the words “just arrived” were quite deliberate he knew. Victoria was five minutes late and, given His Lordship’s insistence on punctuality, Emilie was pleasantly certain that the young lady would come to regret her tardiness. “Ah yes! I’ll see to her now so bung her in Emilie.”
Emilie grinned malevolently. “Very well sir.” She purred and flounced out of the door.
Victoria was waiting nervously in the outside office. She was a small girl with pretty looks and dark brown hair that fell in natural waves over her shoulders. She was just twenty years old and a business student at a prestigious university in the city. She was also one of Lord Castlebridge’s young protégés. Lord Castlebridge was a chauvinistic man in most respects but, to his credit, he was a believer in encouraging more young women to enter the world of corporate business and to this end he was apt to sponsor a small number of promising looking young female students in their studies and providing them with the basis of a future career within his own company.
He currently had four young ladies under his patronage and they counted themselves lucky to be so. His Lordship paid all their tuition fees at university, provided them with an allowance that made them the envy of many of their fellow students and assured them of a position within his company upon the successful achievement of their degrees. In the bleak economic climate prevailing, such a lifeline was a godsend to an aspiring young student when far too many of their colleagues were f***ed to wait on tables following their graduation and there were few openings for young graduates. Furthermore they gained valuable experience working for a salary in the company during off term periods or for part time work during term time. Lord Castlebridge’s patronage was remarkably fortuitous therefore.
Of course there was a downside to this rosy scenario. The downside was monthly report day. In return for his patronage Lord Castlebridge insisted upon very close monitoring of each girl’s progress either at university or in the company. He was very strict with the standards he expected of his protégés and swift to discipline any failing whatsoever. Each girl was expected to present a formal report to him on a set day each month together with any work from the university and such were his demands for excellence that they were rarely days to be cherished. Victoria was just into her second year under His Lordship’s mentorship and, out of all the monthly reports she had been obliged to deliver, she could think of just two occasions that hadn’t resulted in painful recollections. Waiting nervously in the outer office, Victoria was under no illusions that today’s report held any happier prospects.
Emilie grinned at the young girl sitting pale faced in the outer office clutching her briefcase in her small hands. Emilie had seen enough young ladies of Victoria’s ilk pass through the portals to His Lordship’s inner sanctum to know instantly when one of them had particular reason to fear what awaited her there. She smiled at Victoria with sadistic glee. “His Lordship will deal with you now Miss Partridge.” She told her sweetly.
Victoria swallowed and rose to her feet. “Th...thank you.” She stammered and knocked hesitantly on the imposing door to Lord Castlebridge’s office. A barked command from within bade her enter and, taking a deep breath, she pushed open the door and stepped inside, closing the door behind her.
Lord Castlebridge glanced up from his desk at her. “Good morning Victoria.” He intoned.
Victoria curtsied politely. “Good morning My Lord. Permission to present my monthly report?”
Lord Castlebridge nodded at her. “Carry on Victoria.”
Victoria bit her lip and laid her briefcase down on a small table by the door. There was a very formal, strictly adhered to, ritual to be performed at her monthly report and it never varied. She reached behind her and unfastened her skirt. Her ensemble today had been the cause of much concern to her. Normally for her monthly report she was obliged to wear a plain clean blouse and a loose fitting knee length skirt. Unfortunately this morning she had discovered that she had no skirt of the proper length clean and so she’d had to resort to a much shorter rather frivolous loose skirt. It had already been the cause of much embarrassment to her for it was of such light material that the strong gusting winds had played havoc with her modesty on her way to her appointment with Lord Castlebridge. On several occasions a treacherous gust of wind had exposed her petite bottom clad in white knickers to the admiring glance of passersby. Doubtless Lord Castlebridge would take her to task for not wearing a skirt of the regulation length but that, reflected Victoria, was the least of her worries.
Victoria slipped her skirt down her legs and stepped out of it before folding it neatly and placing it on the small table. It was a mandatory rule that she remove her skirt before delivering her report in her knickers. It was supposed to underline her humility and servility whilst accounting for her recent progress and conduct. His Lordship believed that a little humiliation was character building and it emphasised the young lady’s submission and absolute obedience to his will. It was also, he had pointed out to Victoria, a convenience to have removed her skirt should her report prove unsatisfactory and therefore warranting punishment which, Victoria reflected ruefully, it usually did. Even her knickers were subject to His Lordship’s regulations. She was obliged on these occasions to wear simple, white, full knickers with no frills or adornments. She didn’t quite understand why her knickers were supposed to be full in cut. It couldn’t be for protection or modesty since she invariably had to lower them for punishment in any case!
Divested of her skirt, Victoria picked up her briefcase and took out the relevant documents pertaining to her recent performance and stepped forward to Lord Castlebridge’s desk. She lay the papers on the desk in front of His Lordship and then took a step back and stood to attention as he perused the contents. She trembled in her knickers as he worked his way through them. He seemed reasonably satisfied with her work in the office but Victoria knew that the really damning document lay at the foot of the pile.
It was her latest essay from university. She had a C grade on it! It was the lowest mark she had yet descended to at university. It was theoretically a pass but that would hold little water with Lord Castlebridge. It had been her first written paper after the summer break and she’d struggled to get back into the academic routine. Also it had been on a subject she found dreary and uninteresting. As a result she knew she had made a poor job of that paper and she was fairly certain of the consequences. As a rule His Lordship demanded straight A grades of her. She might just get away with an A minus, a B plus unlikely and a B would certainly earn her the strap. Anything below a B....well Victoria had tasted the cane on two occasions in this office and she was as certain as she could be of anything that today was going to be her third experience of it.
She held her breath as Lord Castlebridge finally came to the essay. The silence was thunderous as he perused it at length. At last he raised his eyes and glared at her. “Do you have any explanation for this miserable effort Victoria?” he demanded of her.
Victoria knew enough by now not to argue or offer feeble excuses. She shook her head abjectly. “No sir. I’m sorry sir.”
He shook the paper at her. “This isn’t good enough Victoria! I’m not prepared to see my investment in you wasted through your negligence of your studies. You are quite aware I’m sure that I expect better of you than this.”
Victoria nodded miserably. “Yes sir. It won’t happen again sir.”
“Well we shall make every effort to ensure that it doesn’t Victoria! I think you’re aware of the consequences for a feeble effort like this.”
Victoria nodded again, her lower lip quivering. “Y... yes sir.” she mumbled abjectly.
“Very well then Victoria! Please fetch the cane.”
Sorrowfully Victoria padded across the room to the tall cabinet in the corner. The cane was hung high up on hooks in the cabinet and Victoria had to stand on tiptoes to stretch and lift it down. It was a frightful implement; nearly five feet long and a quarter of an inch think. Victoria knew from past experience that its bite from a firmly delivered swing was agonising. With trembling hands she carried it back to Lord Castlebridge’s desk.
His Lordship regarded her sternly. “Well Victoria I’m sure you were perfectly aware that you were going to be caned today. Do you have anything to say for yourself?”
Victoria shook her head sadly. “No sir. I...I’m sorry sir.”
“Very well then. To begin with Victoria you were five minutes late for your appointment with me today. I have emphasised time and again Victoria that it is impossible to run a multi-national business corporation without staff punctuality. Therefore you will receive one stroke of the cane for every minute you were late.”
Victoria swallowed the bitter saliva in her mouth. “Yes sir.” she murmured.
“Secondly I have had to take issue with you concerning the correct attire to be worn at these meetings before Victoria. Your skirt today is far too short and inappropriate for an office environment. For this offence you will receive another five strokes of the cane.” Victoria shivered in fear. The most severe caning she had suffered so far was fifteen strokes. Her tally today was already ten and His Lordship hadn’t even come to the worst offence yet. “As for this!” His Lordship continued, picking up her essay distastefully between finger and thumb as if it were some offensive material. “This wretched thing is an entirely more serious matter. For this you are awarded twenty strokes of the cane!”
Victoria felt the room sway slightly as His Lordship delivered her sentence. “T...twenty strokes sir?” she bleated feebly.
“Twenty strokes plus five for your incorrect attire and five more for your lack of punctuality Victoria! That is a total of thirty strokes all told on your bottom... your bare bottom! Do you understand?”
Victoria gave a little sob and nodded. “Y... yes sir.”
“There’s no use in your quivering your lip now Victoria! You are fully aware that you deserve what you have coming to you. I have invested far too much time and money in your career young lady and I’ll not see my investment go to waste through your inability to live up to the standards required of you. You are a young lady of considerable talent and potential and it would be criminal of me to allow you to squander that potential for the want of a sound caning when you fail to achieve it. Whilst you are being caned you may take the time to reflect that there is many a young person in your position, without the glittering opportunities provided for you, who would be all too happy to swap places with you. Therefore I expect you to take your caning without protest and with gratitude for the time and attention devoted to you. Do I make myself clear Victoria?”
“Yes sir. Thank you sir.”
“Very well then, lay the cane down on the desk and assume the customary position for punishment.”
“Yes sir.” Victoria obeyed the command dolefully but without further protest. She lay the cane down on Lord Castlebridge’s desk and then walked to the middle of the room. She took up the required position at the very centre of the great circular rug covering the office parquet floor and, facing His Lordship at his desk, she slipped her thumbs into the waistband of her knickers and eased them down to her knees. At least she congratulated herself on remembering to shave her pubic hair that morning. His Lordship had something of a bee in his bonnet about pubic hair on a girl which he considered unsightly and unhygienic. It was a rule of his therefore that she kept herself cleanly shaven in that region and he would have undoubtedly awarded her extra strokes had she failed to do so. It was also the rule that knickers must be lowered to the knees for punishment. It was not only the bottom that was punished on these occasions but the backs of the legs as well and knickers were therefore to be lowered all the way to the knees to afford unrestricted access to the tender flesh at the back of the thighs. Once her knickers were suitably lowered Victoria bent forward, keeping her legs straight, until she could just touch her toes with the tips of her fingers. And then she waited.
His Lordship seemed in no particular hurry to commence her caning. Indeed his attention was taken for the moment with an email on his laptop. He took the time to read it and then to type an answer as the minutes ticked away and Victoria waited trembling and trying to compose herself for her coming ordeal. She could hear the traffic on the street below but in the office there was just the sound of His Lordship’s fingers clicking away at the keyboard. She felt her legs shake uncontrollably as the wait stretched on and became interminable.
Finally he took a last look at the mail he had composed and then clicked on the send button. Only then did he rise from behind his desk and pick up the cane. Victoria took a deep breath and steeled herself.
Lord Castlebridge took up position to the side of her and allowed himself to admire the young lady bent over for the cane before him. Little Victoria in truth was one of his favourites. She had an altogether agreeably pleasant personality and she was generally very obedient and submissive. It was characteristic of her that she had accepted her punishment without protest or any attempt to plea for clemency. She was frightened of the cane it was true but she had made no effort to question the justice of her punishment and had presented herself correctly and immediately when so ordered to do so. She was a pretty little thing too. His Lordship was very fond of her and she would go far in the business he was certain. He had great hopes for her future.
He measured the distance and laid the cane across Victoria’s pert little buttocks, watching her shudder at the cool touch of the rattan on her naked skin. Then he lifted the cane away and above his shoulder, pausing for a second or two to increase her fearful anticipation. Finally, with a loud hissing sweep, he brought the cane down firmly to land with f***e into the centre of Victoria’s bottom.
Victoria had been holding her breath but the loud crack of the cane and the sudden agonising shock of its impact drove the breath from her lungs in an explosive gasp. As Lord Castlebridge lifted the cane away she clenched her teeth together and screwed her eyes shut against the fearful pain of that first stroke which seemed to spread from its concentrated epicentre across her bottom and penetrate deep into the muscle of her buttocks. She was breathing deeply though her nose and between her teeth; hissing as she did so.
Lord Castlebridge watched as the impact point of the cane turned into a scarlet line across Victoria’s buttocks. He was of a mind to take his time over caning the young lady so as to allow each individual stroke time to sink in and leave its indelible impression of pain on her. The second stroke was delivered a little lower on her buttocks and was even harder than the first. Victoria swayed under the f***e of it and lost her balance momentarily to take a half step forward as her eyes flew open in shock and a strangled squeak escaped from between her clenched teeth. She regained her position quickly however before His Lordship could admonish her for losing it. A first hint of tears appeared in her wild eyes.
The third stroke was the worst yet. Lord Castlebridge landed it with dreadful accuracy into the faint crease separating Victoria’s buttocks from the top of her thighs. Unable to help herself Victoria cried aloud with the awful agony of the stroke and her knees buckled. Lord Castlebridge frowned. “Maintain your position Victoria!” he warned her.
Hastily Victoria straightened her legs. “Yes sir. Sorry sir” she sobbed, the agony of that stroke in such a sensitive place nearly unbearable. A little moan of despair emitted from her lips as His Lordship measured up the next stroke by laying the cane across the back of her thighs. She knew from experience that the strokes on the back of the legs were the worst of all. It was every bit as bad as she expected it to be. The cane cracked loudly into the soft flash of her thighs some three or four inches below her buttocks and she squealed in torment at the exquisite agony of it. Her knees buckled once more and she very nearly fell over.
“Back into position this instance!” Lord Castlebridge commanded her.
“Yes sir.” She sobbed pathetically and struggled to straighten her stinging legs.
“You have been warned twice now Victoria!” Lord Castlebridge reminded her. “You are to maintain your position for the duration of your punishment. If I have occasion to remind you once more I shall add five extra strokes to your caning. Do you understand?”
“Yes sir.” murmured the weeping girl.
“Well see to it that you remember.” He lifted his arm once more and this time, to punish her for her failure to hold her position correctly, he delivered it with all his f***e again across the back of her thighs.
Emilie was listening at the door in delight and she grinned as the fifth stroke brought a fearful scream of pain from the tormented young girl. It seemed as if little Miss Partridge was receiving a thorough job of correction on her! Emilie shivered deliciously as another loud crack from beyond the door elicited a howling shriek. She wished fervently that she could be witness to the young girl’s caning; watch the cane cut into her pretty little behind and watch her face contort itself in torment at the agony of it. There was another squeal from within the office. That made seven according to Emilie’s reckoning. She wondered just how many stokes little Victoria was going to receive. She hoped it was a lot!
As the eighth stroke drove another bubbling scream from poor Victoria’s throat, Emilie’s arousal got the better of her. She slid her hand up under her skirt to press at her sex through the material of her knickers and when, a few seconds later, there was yet another loud shriek from the suffering young girl she pushed her fingers inside her knickers to rub at the moisture within urgently. She allowed herself a delicious thought. His Lordship had informed her just yesterday that he wanted his young protégé, Victoria, to learn some of the secretarial functions of the office from Emilie. To this end he had decided that Victoria would work under Emilie’s personal tutelage one or two afternoons a week in between her university studies. Emilie grinned at the thought as a particularly agonising stroke to the back of her thighs raised Victoria’s loudest scream yet. Under her personal supervision this little darling would be entirely at Emilie’s mercy! His Lordship had already given Emilie the authority to discipline Victoria as needed. It was an entirely agreeable prospect to Emilie. She had great plans for Miss Victoria Partridge! She shuddered involuntarily in mounting arousal; stroking herself wantonly to the accompaniment of the next wail to emanate from within Lord Castlebridge’s office.
Suddenly she heard a noise behind her at the outer office door. Hastily she withdrew her hand from her knickers and adjusted her dress as a junior cleric entered from without. He had a weighty file in his hands. “What is it?” she demanded imperiously.
The young man swallowed nervously as Emilie glared at him. He had only been with the company for six months but he had learned early that it was a very bad idea to cross Lord Castlebridge’s formidable personal secretary. “Er it’s the er... report from Allied Textiles.” He informed her timidly. “You.. you said you wanted it immediately it came in.”
“Thank you. You may lay it on the desk. I shall attend to it.”
“Yes er right.”
The young man lay the document down and stepped back. His eyes opened in surprise however at the plainly audible scream from behind the closed door to Lord Castlebridge’s inner office. He glanced at the door uncertainly. Emilie’s eyes bored into him. “Was there anything else?” she demanded.
The young man shook his head hastily. “Er no... no nothing else.”
“Very well then! You may be about your business. I shall see to the report.”
“Yes... er yes of course.” The young man retreated quickly in confusion.
Emilie reached over her desk to pick up the report. A slow malevolent grin spread across her face at the opportunity it provided. His Lordship wanted the report on his desk as soon as it arrived. He had been explicit in that instruction! Very well then! He would have it! She stroked the file lovingly as Victoria squealed once more from the frightful pain of the cane. Deliberately she walked over to the door and knocked.
Lord Castlebridge’s arm was raised to deliver the f******nth stroke to Victoria’s already well striped nether regions when he heard Emilie’s private knock on the door. He frowned in puzzlement. “Yes Emilie?” he barked.
Emilie stepped through the door. “The Allied Textiles report sir.” She informed him sweetly. “You said you wanted it immediately it arrived.”
Victoria reacted in the worst possible way to the embarrassment of Emilie walking in while she was bent over with her knickers lowered for the cane. She jumped up from her position and tried to cover her modesty. Lord Castlebridge glared at her. “Did I tell you to get up young lady” he asked her severely.
Victoria shook her head miserably; her pretty little face streaked with tears.
“N... no sir.”
“Then resume your position immediately!” Whimpering in pain and humiliation, Victoria complied. “You have had sufficient warnings Victoria.” His Lordship told her. “You can take an extra five strokes for your disobedience!” Victoria moaned despairingly. “The next time it will be ten!” Lord Castlebridge continued.”
Emilie barely managed to keep the smirk off her face. She was delighted that her intervention had caused Victoria to be awarded an extra five strokes. She took a long appraising look at the miserable young girl’s bottom admirably marked with livid scarlet stripes. Lord Castlebridge regarded her sourly. He was quite certain that Emilie had used the pretext of the arrival of the report as an excuse to witness Victoria’s humiliation. The report wasn’t so demanding of attention that it couldn’t have waited a few minutes until he had finished punishing the young girl. He could hardly admonish her however since she had after all followed his instructions to the letter.
“You can shove the report in my in tray Emilie.” he ordered her. “I’ll see to it presently.”
“Yes sir.” Emilie walked over to His Lordship’s desk. Among the items on the desk was the internal communication system between His Lordship and her own desk. It was a very old fashioned intercom operated by a simple switch when he wanted to summon her. Concealing her action from His Lordship’s view she surreptitiously switched the intercom on as she laid down the file. Lord Castlebridge was negligent in the use of his intercom and forever leaving it on. Emilie had become privy to many a useful secret as a result of his carelessness. Her task completed Emilie stalked languorously from the office, pausing to take a last admiring look at the weeping Victoria waiting for her punishment to recommence. As she was closing the door behind her she saw Lord Castlebridge raise his arm to continue the beating of the trembling young girl bent over in the middle of the rug.
Seated at her desk in the outer office Emilie pulled her intercom closer to her. Now the swish of the cane, its loud crack against Victoria’s bare flesh and her subsequent shrieks of pain were no longer muffled by the intervening door. Emilie could hear every sound as if she were in the room with them. She lifted her skirt once more and her fingers quested inside her knickers; masturbating herself as Victoria’s suffering continued in the room beyond and every cry and sob of her pain transmitted itself to Emilie’s eager ears. There was a particularly loud crack of the cane and a fearful scream from the intercom. Emilie heard Lord Castlebridge remind the punished girl to maintain her position so she guessed that the agony of that stroke had been too much for the young girl to bear and she had very nearly lost her stance. His Lordship had promised Victoria an extra ten strokes should she lose position once more. Emilie fervently hoped that she would earn them.
Emilie was keeping careful tally of the number of strokes. Gleefully she counted past the twenty mark and her fingers at her sex became more urgent yet as the number climbed towards thirty. Victoria’s wailing had taken on a pathetic quality by now; a continuous keening punctuated by louder screams as the cane cut once more into her burning rear. As the tally reached the thirty mark, Emilie’s excitement mounted to a climax. She clamped one hand over her mouth to stifle her own cries and, to the accompaniment of another piercing howl over the intercom, her orgasm overwhelmed her. Hot liquid gushed from her sex, soaking her knickers, as the waves of her orgasm pulsed from her groin throughout her body. Her orgasm seemed to go on and on; wracking her body with tormenting ecstasy. Finally she collapsed forward over her desk gasping as Lord Castlebridge in the adjoining office delivered the final stroke with, all the f***e in his right arm, to the centre of Victoria’s tortured buttocks.
Victoria nearly fainted with the agony of that last searing lash of the cane. A red mist seemed to form momentarily before her eyes and her legs threatened to buckle beneath her. With a superhuman effort she willed herself to hold still although her wailing cry continued long after the cane’s final impact before slowly fading into abject blubbering.
Lord Castlebridge approved. Apart from her occasional lapses, Victoria had held her stance remarkably well considering the severity and duration of the punishment. That her caning had been agony was evidenced by the mass of swollen welts laced across her buttocks and thighs. I spite of that she had held her position for the most part. He did consider however that the thirty five strokes she had received was just about at her limit of endurance. Anything more than that she would certainly need to be restrained. He made a note to himself that should anything in her conduct warrant a more severe caning he would order her to present herself at Castlebridge Hall. There she could be securely firmly to the caning stool for her punishment.
He laid the cane down on his desk and took his seat once more. Victoria remained bent over sobbing piteously and her legs trembling. She dared not raise herself until given permission to do so. Lord Castlebridge regarded her for a few seconds before relenting. “You may straighten up now Victoria.” He told her.
Victoria obeyed stiffly. She had looked better. Her hair was a tangled ruin, her face red and swollen and her cheeks streaked with the ruins of her makeup from her tears. She stumbled slightly. Her legs did not seem to be working properly and her knickers had slipped down her legs to become entangled round her ankles. Lord Castlebridge noticed. “Step out of your knickers Victoria.” He commanded her. “Pick them up and put them on my desk.” Snivelling in misery the young girl did as she was bade. Lord Castlebridge pointed to a low stool in the corner. “Now you can spend half an hour on the stool Victoria to reflect upon your recent failings and the standards that I expect of you.”
“Y... yes sir.” Miserably Victoria stumbled over to the stool. She was familiar with the requirements of this particular part of the disciplinary process. She kneeled on the stool facing the wall, remembering to kneel up straight, and clasped her hands behind her head. Half an hour in this position, with her knees on the hard stool and the aching throbbing from her beaten bottom, would be torment she knew. She dared not move or alter her position however since it would inevitably earn her extra punishment.
For the next half an hour Lord Castlebridge thumbed through the Allied Textiles report. He scribbled some notes on a pad concerning his decisions on the report before pushing it aside and glancing at the clock on the wall. It was nearly lunch time. He reached down to summon Emilie with his intercom. He frowned. It was switched on. He must have forgotten it again.
Emilie came quickly to his summons and her eyes danced gleefully to the sorrowful figure of Victoria kneeling on her stool in the corner, her swollen backside turning purple with bruising. Emilie exulted inwardly. It was as thorough a thrashing as she had seen in a long time. Little Miss Partridge wasn’t going to be sitting comfortably for the next few days!
Lord Castlebridge glanced at Emilie sharply, recognising the gloating on her face. He frowned thoughtfully. It was high time, he considered, that his beautiful secretary was given a short sharp reminder of her position. He was far too lax with her. He hadn’t given her a thrashing since the conference in Geneva last summer and that had only been a few strokes of the cane to curb her petulance. He kept her in pampered luxury in her own luxurious apartment and paid for her own sports car not to mention all the clothes, holidays and jewellery he lavished on her. She was spoiled rotten and long overdue for sound good hiding. He dismissed the thought for the moment however with just the mental note to see to it in the near future.
“Ah Emilie. I’ll be leaving for lunch in a few minutes. Make sure my car is available will you.”
“Of course sir.”
“And one more thing.” Lord Castlebridge turned to address the young girl on her stool in the corner. “You may get down now Victoria and would you step over here please.”
Naked from the waist down and bearing the marks of the cane across her rear, Victoria blushed crimson with humiliation to be so exposed in front of His Lordship’s personal secretary as she padded obediently across the room to stand before Lord Castlebridge’s desk. His Lordship nodded at her. “I think you’ve met Emilie before on a few occasions Victoria.” Lord Castlebridge remarked. “Emilie here is very important to the efficient running of this office and she has a number of years of experience in the way I like things doing around here. I have been thinking about your position recently and, as part of your ongoing training in the company, I’d like you to spend some afternoons working under Emilie here to learn from her experience on the clerical side. Now you have no lectures or seminars on Friday afternoons do you?”
Victoria shook her head. “No sir.” She mumbled quietly.
“Capital! In that case I want you to spend each Friday afternoon until Christmas working with Emilie here. I may pencil in other days for you to spend time in the office as well subject to your not having university commitments of course.”
“Yes sir.” Victoria acknowledged in a barely audible murmur, the hazards of serving under Emilie all too evident to her.
“Excellent. Emilie I shall hold you responsible for Victoria’s progress and conduct befitting the standards expected in this office.”
Emilie fought back the triumph in her face. “You may rely on me sir.” she purred.
Lord Castlebridge nodded in satisfaction. “Good, good! There’s another thing that’s just occurred to me as well Victoria. I think you will benefit enormously from a little lesson in hard manual labour. I have always been a believer in everybody within a corporation being familiar with even the humblest roles. A short regime of physical labour does wonders for the work ethic and discipline. Therefore I want you to spend the next few weekends at the Hall working with the domestic staff in the housekeeping department. You will be paid for your time of course and accommodation and uniforms will be provided for you at the Hall. I think it will do you a power of good to get your hands dirty for a change and in addition it will allow me to keep a closer eye on you for a few weeks to ensure that this,” Lord Castlebridge paused to tap her essay with a finger, “that this sort of thing does not reoccur.”
Victoria swallowed as all her plans for the next few weekends dissolved into ruin. “Yes sir.” She whispered.
“Thus on Friday you will present yourself here... suitably attired... to work under Emilie. You will need to pack a few things in a bag because immediately after the office closes you will be obliged to take the bus to Castlebridge and present yourself at the Hall. It is only about half a mile from the bus stop to the Hall so you should be able to walk that. You’ll remain at the Hall until Sunday evening. There is a Sunday bus back to the city shortly after six I believe. Is that all clear?”
Thoroughly depressed by now, Victoria nodded meekly. “Yes sir.”
“Good. Now even with these new obligations I shall expect you to keep up with your university work. With judicious time management I’m sure you can manage to stay on top of your studies. You will of course have free time in the evenings at the Hall to attend to any study material requiring attention. Do you have any questions?”
Victoria shook her head dismally. “No sir.”
“Good! One last thing Victoria.” Lord Castlebridge lifted up her offending essay. “I want this rewriting to a much higher standard before the weekend. You will present me with the revised paper at the Hall on Saturday afternoon. If I consider it to be still unsatisfactory you will be caned again. This time however you will be restrained on the Hall caning stool and receive double the number of strokes! Do I make myself plain young lady?”
Victoria nodded hastily. “Yes My Lord.”
“Excellent. In that case you may get dressed and you are dismissed.” Victoria stepped forward to recover her knickers from Lord Castlebridge’s desk but he stopped her shortly. “Not your knickers Victoria! You may go home without them to teach you to wear a more modest skirt in future! You may recover them when you report here for work on Friday. Emilie would you e****t Victoria out please?”
Victoria donned her short skirt once more and with a last curtsy accompanied Emilie out of the office. In the outer office Emilie turned to Victoria with glee and patted her on the rump. Victoria gasped at the contact with her still throbbing bottom and Emilie laughed at her discomfort. “Still sore are we little miss?” she asked her mockingly. “Poor little dear! Had a nasty caning have we? And sent home without any knickers as well! It’s a windy day outside I see. A few errant gusts and the whole world will be able to see that little Miss Partridge is not only not wearing any knickers but has had her pretty little bottom caned as well!” Victoria glared at her sulkily but Emilie just laughed. “Well you’d best be on your way my dear. I shall see you on Friday.” She reached forward to curl a strand of Victoria’s hair in her fingers and lowered her voice to a sultry purr. “Don’t forget little miss that His Lordship has made me responsible for your conduct and I run a very tight ship so be warned!” Victoria glowered, hating Emilie with a passion. Emilie laughed again. “You are dismissed Miss Partridge!” she told her.
Emilie watched Victoria depart and settled back in her chair at her desk in triumph: already making her plans for Victoria Partridge. But she had made an enemy.