A Very Short Sharp Shock

A girl’s parents and school collude to issue a firm warning

By Pat Greenham

The Headmaster of Brathenhall College had three sick notes in front of him and one request for absence to attend a family funeral. They were all for Sarah Langton, an eighteen year old in the upper sixth who had been at the College for six years. Sarah was well liked but the Headmaster was aware that recently she had shown some rebellious behaviour. The problem he faced this morning was that the handwriting on the three sick notes was different from the letter requesting absence for the family funeral, despite all supposing to have come from Penny Langton, Sarah’s mother.

A phone call to Penny Langton confirmed what he thought; Sarah had taken it upon herself to forge the sick notes and play truant, not once but three times. To say that Sarah’s mother was taken aback would be an understatement, she was almost speechless and told the Headmaster that she would phone her husband.

In the meantime, Sarah was summoned to see the Headmaster at morning break. When confronted with the evidence she knew the game was up and that she had been well and truly caught. She had in fact spent the previous day with her boyfriend down at the coast sunbathing on the beach.

The Headmaster asked if she had anything to say, to which she replied that she was sorry, but there was an air of slight contempt which the Headmaster did not care for. He told her this was very serious and she must expect the school to take a hard line, adding that her father was going to call him at 11am to discuss the matter. Sarah was told to return at 12.15 when school broke for lunch.

At exactly 11am, the school secretary took a call from David Langton and he was put through to the Headmaster. If Penny Langton had been speechless, Sarah’s father was furious. He told the Head that Sarah has been a nightmare for a few months. She had taken the law into her own hands, had been constantly rude to her mother and shown herself to have absolutely no respect for any authority. He added that only three weeks previously there had been a set-to and he had told his daughter that if she stepped out of line one more time there would be serious consequences. Apparently Sarah had almost laughed at him. David told the Headmaster that this was the day that it was all going to stop and that Sarah was going to be bought down to earth with a very big bump.

David Langton asked the Headmaster what punishment he felt was appropriate for a pupil that had lied by clearly playing truant three times and in the process showing no respect to the school or the Headmaster himself. There was a clear undertone that David was looking for the school to take severe measures.

The Headmaster told Sarah’s father the options were; first, immediate expulsion; second, a period of suspension; third, a detention every week for the rest of the term and finally being sent to the Deputy Headmistress for a dose of corporal punishment. He said that despite the scale of the crime, he did not feel expulsion was merited, which left three alternatives.

There was a pause on the phone until David Langton said that it was for the school to decide on the most appropriate punishment but asked if the Headmaster was interested in his view.

The response was: “Of course.”

Sarah’s father had calmed down a bit during the conversation and gave a rational view of the alternatives. He said that a period of suspension would be counter-productive as his daughter would simply lounge about at home. A detention every week for the rest of the term would not quite deliver the ‘short sharp shock’ he was seeking. In conclusion, David Langton told the Headmaster that he felt this called for old-fashioned methods and that his daughter should be caned and caned severely.

The Headmaster thanked David Langton for his single-minded thinking and said he agreed with the analysis. He told Sarah’s father that he could arrange for her to be caned by the Deputy Headmistress at lunchtime or the end of school, and that she should get six strokes with the sixth form cane across the seat of her trousers.

David’s response took the Headmaster slightly by surprise when he replied that he felt it would be much more effective for the punishment to be delivered by the Headmaster himself and that, further, if Sarah was to be given a short, and very sharp shock, she should be humiliated at the same time and be made to take at least six strokes without any protection.

David added: “For the avoidance of doubt, for lying to the school, playing truant and showing a complete lack of respect, I think my daughter should receive a minimum of six strokes across her bare bottom.”

Sarah’s father added that he was quite happy if the Headmaster wished to put what he had just said in writing and fax it across immediately. Sarah’s father added that he felt the punishment should be administered as soon as possible, ideally at lunchtime, as he intended to give Sarah a second similar punishment later in the day for lying to her parents and also showing no respect at home as well as getting into serious trouble at school.

The Headmaster sat back and thought for a few moments. He could not disagree with any of David Langton’s logic, but his solution was quite difficult. The cane was rarely used at the College, perhaps no more that three times a term and almost all recipients were boys. He could only recall one female being caned in recent years and that had been for stealing and was administered by the Deputy Headmistress.

However he accepted David’s view about the need to bring Sarah down to earth and asked if he felt it was really necessary to cane her bare bottom and also said that he would be more comfortable if the Deputy Headmistress was called upon to deliver the caning.

David’s response was immediate. His view was that it would be a more effective punishment coming from the Headmaster himself, and if she was to retain any level of protection it would not have the humiliation that he felt was so important. However he added that if the school insisted she retain some level of clothing then he would want her to receive considerably more than six strokes, probably twelve.

The Headmaster reminded himself of the three main guidelines applied by the College Governors that firstly dictated that any caning given must be of a maximum of six strokes. There were also two further guidelines; that corporal punishment should be given by a teacher of the same sex, and that any pupil should be allowed to retain at least one layer of clothing.

David Langdon was effectively asking him to ignore two of these guidelines, which he felt was putting him in an impossible position.

The Headmaster decided he could accept that one of the guidelines could be overlooked and decided to propose two alternatives. First, if David Langton was insistent that the caning be administered by him, he could not cane her bare bottom but would be prepared, with a female witness, to cane her across her underwear. Or, second, if he was insistent that she be caned across her bare bottom he would have to ask the Deputy Headmistress to do the honours.

David thanked the Headmaster and told him that he understood what he was asking was causing a dilemma. Sarah’s father was in effect being asked to choose between a bare bottom caning being delivered by the Deputy Headmistress or a caning across her underwear being administered by the Headmaster himself. Pausing for a moment or two, Sarah’s father decided that his daughter really should be caned in the most severe way and told the Headmaster that he would accept the alternative of the bare bottom caning being given by the Deputy Headmistress during the lunch break providing the Headmaster was present at the time to ensure his daughter’s humiliation. The Headmaster did not feel he could go any further and told David Langdon that they had an acceptable solution.

Before the conversation ended, David Langdon told the Headmaster the caning she would receive at lunchtime would be the first of two thrashings his daughter would receive that day and said he had one final request.

“Would it possible for my wife to come to the school a little later and borrow a cane?”

The Headmaster told David that would be fine and that he would make sure his secretary had a suitable cane available, reflecting that Sarah Langton was indeed going to have a day to remember as it seemed she was going to be caned twice.

His phone conversation had taken about 30 minutes and the Headmaster reflected on what had been agreed and also noted that it was only 45 minutes before Sarah would return to learn her fate and be caned.

In the meantime he had received the fax from David Langton and had briefed the Deputy Headmistress.

Reading the fax from Sarah’s father, the instructions were clear:

Dear Headmaster,

I am very sorry that my daughter has shown so little respect to the College and in particular to you personally. She has clearly lied and has now been caught playing truant at least three times. It is only right that Sarah is severely punished and following our conversation I feel strongly that a severe caning is the right answer, and that further for her to fully realise how serious this matter is that the caning be delivered by your Deputy in your presence. Sarah needs to realise that this has to stop and stop today. Her attitude has been appalling and a level of humiliation is very important. As such I am strongly of the view that her caning should be a minimum of six strokes given across her bare bottom. I would also ask that, as part of a ‘very sharp shock’ that Sarah will receive today, she is told in uncertain terms that you expect her to take her punishment well with an element of compliance. By all means share this letter with my daughter,

Yours, David Langton

Mrs Parker, the school’s Deputy Headmistress, arrived first and the Headmaster shared David Langton’s fax with her.

The Deputy said: “Wow, she has really pushed her father over the limit.”

Moments later Sarah arrived and was shown into the Headmaster’s study for the second time that day. He still had the four letters in front of him, the three forgeries and the genuine one from Sarah’s mother. Asking Sarah if she had anything to say, she simply said: “No.”

The Headmaster addressed her and said: “This is a very serious situation and you mush expect a severe punishment. I have considered expulsion but do not feel we have to go to that extreme. I do not consider suspension is the right course either and a series of detentions is also not appropriate. I have therefore decided the only alternative to expulsion is to cane you and, after consultation with your father, to give you the most severe caning available, which will be administered by Mrs Parker immediately.”

Sarah looked shocked and simply said: “You can’t cane me, I am a sixth former.”

Pausing for effect, the Headmaster told her she could indeed be caned and that it was a punishment that was absolutely appropriate. He told her of the conversation with her father who had agreed that a serious punishment was essential and that she should know the only alternative to expulsion was six strokes of the cane and, again pausing for effect, given across her bare bottom. The Headmaster told her that if she was in any doubt about just how furious her father was, she could read the fax that he had received that spelt out exactly how she should be punished.

Suddenly the contempt was gone as the absolute reality of the situation dawned on the sixth-former. She had thought she could get away with anything, but all of a sudden she was in serious trouble. The horrible reality was that unless she was to be expelled she had to accept the dreadful prospect of being caned.

The Headmaster asked Mrs Parker to take over proceedings, who told Sarah that it was time to get on with it and that she should remove her blazer and black trousers. The Headmaster stood up and went to lock the door to his study and then to select a cane from a small selection in his cupboard, choosing a 36 inch instrument with a straight handle reserved exclusively for sixth formers, which he then handed to Mrs Parker.

The horrible reality finally dawned on Sarah who now knew she had no alternative and started to do as instructed. After her blazer had been removed, she kicked off her shoes and undid her trousers before stepping out of them one leg at a time. Standing in just her knickers below the waist, she was told to bend over the Headmaster’s desk and reach over to told the far side. As she got into position, she was told to effectively lie across the desk with her legs stretched straight out behind her at a 45 degree angle and that she must remain in position until her caning was complete and to stand only when instructed, adding that if she failed to stay in position the previous stroke would not count.

Laying in position with her knickers now tightened across her bottom, Sarah started to think about how painful the cane was going to be. Then the Headmaster asked Mrs Parker to lower Sarah’s knickers.

Stepping forward, the Deputy put her fingers into the waistband of her pants before lowering them right down to the floor and telling her to step out of them, much to the surprise of the Headmaster who had simply thought they would be lowered below her bottom.

The scene was set with Sarah’s bare bottom now perfectly presented for Mrs Parker. In the Headmaster’s whole career he had caned many boys and could remember a few occasions that he had caned a male pupil’s bare bottom. He had once slippered a girl across her gym shorts but had never previously caned a girl and certainly not on the bare bottom. However he did have an absolute mandate from the girl’s father and was glad that Mrs Parker was actually going to be the one giving the cane.

Whilst they had a job to do, and he knew his Deputy was required to deliver a very solid caning, he could also not fail to appreciate that Sarah had a very attractive bottom.

Touching her bottom with the cane, the Headmistress took it back for the first time and whipped it in to hit Sarah’s bottom right in the middle with a tremendous whack that caused a loud screech as she leapt to her feet to face the Headmaster to tell him that there was no way she could take another five strokes and in the process exposing her frontal nudity completely to both of them.

The Headmaster was unmoved as he told her to get back into position, adding that the first stroke would not count and she had six to go and reminded her to remain in position. He told her that Mrs Parker’s task was to punish her soundly as per her fathers instructions and her task was take the punishment with some grace, adding that it was in her own interests to remain in position so that they could get though this unpleasant business as quickly as possible. He also told her that if she stood up again he would ask another teacher to come in to hold her in position.

Sarah knew it was hopeless and once again bent over his desk. The second stroke came quickly, hitting her lower down toward the crease and resulting in another screech, but she stayed in position. Leaving about thirty seconds, the Deputy Headmistress took the cane slowly back and thrashed her bottom for the third time creating a cane weal above the second stroke.

The pain in her bottom was beyond anything imaginable but she knew that she had to take it and not stand up again. She gripped the far side of the desk as Mrs Parker again took the cane back over her shoulder and whacked Sarah’s bottom right in the middle, causing another loud gasp. Thirty seconds later the cane was again taken slowly back before coming down with speed for the fifth time hitting Sarah’s bottom above the previous stroke. The Headmaster was standing back watching the caning with interest and admitted to himself that compared to his own canings Mrs Preston was considerably more severe and very accurate.

The sixth stroke was delivered higher and again caused an anguished gasp as Sarah struggled to absorb the unbelievable pain caused by such a simple instrument. The Headmaster remarked that if she had only done as instructed her punishment would be over, but leaping to her feet after only one stroke meant she was to get an extra whack. Turning to Mrs Parker, he told her to ensure the tradition was upheld and to really make the last stroke count. Sarah had six clear cane lines across her bottom, but Mrs Parker had left a small space of virgin bottom to aim at and when she took the cane slowly back for the seventh and final time she brought it down with even more ferocity to find the said space perfectly. Sarah had just received a very severe caning, the like of which she had never thought she would experience. The pain in her bottom was terrible but at least it was over. She had also had the humiliating experience of having her bare bottom caned in the presence of the Headmaster. After a minute, she was told to stand as the Headmaster sat down behind his desk complimenting Mrs Parker on the deliverance of a very fine caning. Standing in front of them both with her pubic triangle on full view and tears in her eyes, she was asked if she now felt playing truant and lying had been worthwhile, to which she replied: “Absolutely not!”

He told her she should put her clothes back on. She reached down to pick up her knickers from the floor and gingerly pulled them up her legs and over her damaged bottom. Her black trousers and jacket followed and she was told to leave. The caning had lasted about twenty minutes and as she had missed lunch she went to the toilets to clean up her face. The pain within her bottom was awful and when she sat down for the rest of the day she was painfully reminded of her thrashing.

The Headmaster meanwhile gave the cane that had been used to his secretary for later collection by Mrs Langton.

Sarah could not admit to anyone what had happened and was in a trance for the whole afternoon, thinking of nothing else but the caning she had received. It took over an hour for the pain to ease but her bottom was throbbing right until the end of lessons.

As the College finished for the day at 4pm, Sarah went home and started to think about what her parents were going to say. She soon found out when she was surprised to see her father’s car home early.

Waiting in the kitchen were both her father and mother who were clearly furious. She was told in no uncertain terms that her behaviour was appalling and that she was going to have to make some changes, but in the meantime there was going to a series of sanctions.

First was that her car, given to her on her seventeenth birthday, was going to taken away from her and that she could revert to getting the bus to school.

Second, that her monthly allowance due to be paid at the end of the week had been cancelled.

Third, that she was grounded for the rest of the week.

And finally, that they knew she had been caned at school for lying to the Headmaster. As a fourth sanction she was also going to have to take a second caning for lying to her parents.

Sarah’s father looked her straight in the eye and told her that the car and the allowance were easy, adding that her keys had already been taken and the bank had been instructed. But he knew he could not force her to be caned or put her under lock and key. However if she agreed to all four sanctions she would have the rest of the week to think about her actions and have the opportunity on Saturday to tell them what changes she was going to make to become a more palatable human being. Depending on how much contrition she showed, this might result in her car and allowance being reinstated. However it was made clear that unless she accepted all four sanctions, she would not be given the opportunity to get her car and allowance returned.

To say she was stunned for the second time in a day would be an understatement. Her car was her pride and joy and to have it taken away was dreadful. And how could she survive with no money? For the first time she understood just how upset her parents were and that none of this was a joke.

She asked what did they mean when they said she would caned again, to which her father pulled out a cane from the cupboard telling Sarah that her Headmaster had lent it to the family this very afternoon. To Sarah it looked very much like the cane she had seen all too recently.

He simply said: “You have received six strokes from the school and now you are going to receive six further strokes from your parents. It is about time you accepted that your behaviour has been nothing short of disgraceful. The alternative is that your car and allowance are permanently taken away.”

Sarah knew she was cornered, but the thought of having her already sore bottom caned again was simply dreadful, but what option did she have? She now knew she had really screwed up and she had never seen her parents more angry.

She told them she had no choice but to accept and was told to go to the dining room, remove her trousers and bend right across the table. Sarah was almost in a trance as she went to the large dining room and for the second time that day she was removing her trousers for the unwanted attention of the cane. She hoped this second caning would not be quite as bad as the thrashing she had suffered from Mrs Preston. As she got into position, both her parents entered the room.

David Langton had the cane in his hand as he told his wife that it was time to see the results of the Headmistress’s caning and asked her to lower Sarah’s knickers. As these were slipped down, it was immediately apparent there were seven cane stripes across Sarah’s bottom and knowing that she had been sentenced to six of the best, her father asked her for an explanation and she had to admit she had been awarded an extra stroke for standing up. Both David and his wife were impressed by the decorated bottom and reflected that the Deputy Headmistress had done a very good job. Sarah just wanted this to all be over and hoped that she would be caned quite quickly.

However her father was intent on ensuring he achieved his objective of bringing his daughter down to earth with a very big bump, and told his daughter that she must remain in position until told to stand after her sixth stroke. It was impossible to find parts of her bottom that were unmarked, so he simply started above the crease and gave her six firm stokes at 30 second intervals, gradually working his way up her bottom. She cried out after every stroke and in truth this second thrashing was not as severe as her earlier punishment. But it was still dreadfully painful and she was in tears by the end.

In total Sarah had endured thirteen strokes of the cane during the day, all of which had been given across her bare bottom. She had been very soundly punished and had been utterly humiliated being caned on the bare in front of the headmaster and now by her father. As she stood up facing her parents it was also clear that she also knew she had been beaten mentally as for the first time in months she told them that she wanted to apologise for her behaviour and wanted to be given a chance to change. No longer caring about being half naked in front of her parents, she asked her father for a hug and it was clear that the daddy/daughter relationship was back to a place that it hadn’t been for a long time and that the mission of bringing her down to earth with a very big bump had been successfully achieved.

Her mother told her to pick up her clothes and go to her bedroom and that she would follow in a few minutes. Five minutes later Penny Langton was applying some cold soothing cream to Sarah’s damaged bottom. Later the family all had dinner together and even enjoyed a glass of wine. As Sarah was constantly reminded of her double caning by the painful throbbing in her bottom as she sat on one of the wooden chairs, it is was evident to the three of them that their relationship had changed and Sarah simply wanted to show that she understood just how much she had screwed up.

On the following Saturday she asked her parents over breakfast when she should tell them how she was going to change. David and Penny Langton told her there was no time like the present. Over the next five minutes Sarah told them she was appalled that her behaviour had been so bad, that she was ashamed about the lack of respect she had shown for both the family and the school and that she was going to buckle down and work hard toward her A levels. She also told them that she was going to see less of some of her friends that had not been a good influence. Lastly she told them she knew her punishments had been fully deserved and had been to see her Headmaster the previous day to apologise and tell him that she felt being caned by the Headmistress in his presence had been fully deserved. She finished by saying she felt the same way about being caned at home and finally asked to be given the chance to show she could change, adding that her bottom was going to retain some clear evidence of her double caning for a while. To David and Penny the change had already taken place and her car key was passed across the table and she was told her allowance would be reinstated on Monday.

That evening, she went out for an early meal with just her boyfriend and was home just after 9.30, much earlier than normal. Sarah and her boyfriend had chatted about what had happened that week and she discovered that her Headmistress had been in contact with her boyfriend’s Headmaster who had been informed about Sarah’s punishment at the school which had resulted in him also receiving six of the best across his bare bottom.

The End

© Pat Greenham 2015


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