Second Interview

Surprising facts emerge in a job interview

By Jane Fairweather

“Can I talk to you again, Miss Masefield?” Mr Cox, the ginger haired, rather young headmaster of this private school was saying almost awkwardly.

“Does that mean we won’t be required anymore, Headmaster?” Miss Grey, the decidedly plump, almost white-haired woman who was also applying to be the secretary to the headmaster at this small private school was asking with something approaching indignation.

Miss Johnson, the third candidate for the post, who was about forty and wearing an obviously very tight girdle under her staid blue skirt suit stayed silent, looking extremely confident.

“I am not sure as yet if you will be required again, or not, Miss Grey. You and Miss Johnson can certainly both wait, if of course you want to. It is not impossible it might be to your advantage to do so,” Mr Cox replied very formally. “But there are a few more questions I want to ask Miss Masefield before I make up my mind about which of you is to get this job. You are all good candidates and at present I need more information, especially from Miss Masefield.”

Elizabeth Masefield, who was a platinum blond with large breasts under her neatly ironed white blouse and still in her twenties, rose rather uncertainly from her seat. Her first interview had not seemed to go well and she had seen Miss Johnson come out from her time with the headmaster with a self-satisfied grin on her face, so up to this point she had thought she was out of the running.

“Miss Masefield has quite a backside.” Miss Grey observed to Miss Johnson, glancing sardonically at Elizabeth’s tight grey skirt as the door shut. “If he is after a pretty young thing, all else being equal, he will go for her. And I bet she is wearing tights. The young girls do now, you know, just like pantomime artistes or ladies of the night.”

“Really? I never notice such things. It would be silly of him to take her over one of us. I am sure her typing and shorthand speeds are half mine and probably yours, not that one knows for sure of course. And girls that age can be so tactless. And I am sure we both have so much more of the experience that such a responsible post requires, certainly I do.” Miss Johnson observed.

*          *          *

“I suppose you are not related to our Poet Laureate of ‘Let us go down to the sea again’ fame, are you? I expect everyone asks you that.” Mr Cox said with a twinkle in his eye.

He was rather obviously looking for a relaxing opening to this second interview, for he was aware this splendidly proportioned young woman, who he felt oddly inclined to give the job to, despite the obvious arguments against, had seemed very tense at their first encounter and been far less forthcoming than she should. If he was going to offer her the job he needed to know more about her; there was something definitely missing from the equation.

“I might be a fifth cousin, once removed.” Elizabeth Masefield replied. “We do come from that part of the world, but no, I don’t think so really.”

“Quite a witty answer, Miss Masefield, and I like that. And goodness knows it would be good to have a young attractive secretary that I can trust. I am sure that both the old biddies out there are very competent, but they would cast a gloom on the place to my mind and undoubtedly you would lighten it up. But can I trust you? Most of your posts have been at a fairly low level and being School Secretary of Clinton Hall School does involve a great deal of responsibility.”

“I did work for Mr Thomas at Hinton Agneau for two years and that involved a lot of responsibility.”

“Yes, Miss Masefield I realize that, but after that you have been working at a lower level in the same firm for nearly a year, which to me at least suggests there have been problems.”

“I have still been working as a secretary.”

“Yes, for three people as far as I can make out, which suggests you are essentially a typist. Why did Mr Thomas get rid of you?”

“They actually fired Mr Thomas for personal reasons and demoted me.”

“Why?”

Elizabeth wriggled uncomfortably and blushed more than slightly. Dare she say that she had had affair with a married man?

“His wife complained to the managing director; she seemed to think we were having an affair. Anyway they took it seriously.”

“I see.” Mr Cox answered, rather obviously trying to suppress a smile, then added “Thank you for being so frank.”

Elizabeth wondered if this implied sympathy at the predicament she found herself in, or not?

“So why do you want to work at a little school out in the country, over fifty miles from London, instead of a big City Firm? Nothing like as exciting, I would have thought for a pretty young woman like you! There will be less men about, apart from anything else you know, Miss Masefield.”

“I grew up in the country and I want to get out of London anyway. Too much baggage!”

“Yes, I quite understand. A too complicated love life no doubt!”

Mr Cox started to go through some of the responsibilities of the job, in fact repeating part of the first interview. Elizabeth realized this and switched off. She pondered if her chances of getting this job, which she really liked the look of, had just vanished with the admission she had been disciplined for having an affair with a fellow employee and married man. At least she had not been forced to tell her prospective employer any more than the bare facts. If the whole tangled story came out, then that would be it, which would be a pity, for it seemed genuinely an interesting post. It was reasonably well paid; and moreover the school was fifty miles out of London and it was unlikely Al Thomas would pursue her. He had been distinctly disagreeable for the last few months, just not wanting to accept that she no longer wanted to be with him. Living together had been a disaster and he ought to go back to Margaret with all her awkward ways, or find someone else.

She realized that her prospective boss’s voice was changing now. He was onto something more important.

“As my secretary you would have to show the boys into my study who are going to get the cane, and indeed see them afterwards when they are sometimes extremely upset. Now I know you went to a rather ladylike girl’s school where I don’t suppose a cane has been seen in the last hundred years, quite possibly never, so you would presumably find it a rather strange experience. Could you cope, or would it upset you?”

It struck her Mr Cox had quietly ignored her admission that her private life was somewhat complicated and if she could answer this there was at least a chance she was going to get the job.

“I’ve got a pretty tough skin!” She said trying to sound nonchalant. “I am sure I would cope.”

“That does sound like someone trying to say what they think they are expected to say.” Mr Cox said just a touch wearily. “Now let me put it another way, have you any personal experience of corporal punishment, even having your wrist or leg slapped when you were little? Without that I don’t think you are quite suitable for this post, much as I like you Miss Masefield.”

“I don’t know if you would believe me if I told you the truth.”

“Try me! Whatever you say will not go beyond these four walls.”

Elizabeth gulped, feeling ridiculous, but she felt a definite closeness to this man she barely knew; perhaps she should trust him.

“I am trying to help you Miss Masefield, but if you prefer I can go and tell Miss Johnson she has got the job. She is probably the best of the two so competent other candidates.”

Elizabeth shrugged and opened her mouth.

“I have actually been punished quite a lot. I got spanked and smacked at home, which I never minded that much; it was over quickly, you know, and whatever you had got punished for was forgotten pretty quickly, but just as you said it never happened at school. Indeed they made a fad of not hitting you, but gave you dreadful lectures and floors to scrub instead, which I never thought was an improvement.

“But then, when I was about to go away for my first job, I was dreadfully rude to my Mother while my Father was there. She told me I had always been lazy at school and the best thing I could do was to get a husband and marriage was the only thing I was fit for; and I really resented that and told her she had been a dreadful Mother and Wife. I might just have got away with that, though Dad was not at all pleased, but then I started saying she had been regularly unfaithful and Dad saw red about that. He genuinely did not believe it, though I think it was true. Anyway I got marched upstairs to my parents’ bedroom and ordered to bend over the end of the bed, which strangely I did; maybe I was too scared not to. I got a very sound five of the best. I only had a summer dress and cotton pants on and it hurt like hell. I am not sure it greatly improved my relationship with my Mother, but in an odd way I respect my father for having the guts to do it.”

Suddenly, at the back of her mind, she was there with each parent holding an arm and pulling her through the bedroom door. It had been a very sunny day with only a few white clouds scudding in the blue sky beyond the window and the light had played on the polished wood of the dressing table and the end of the bed, rather like today. Then Dad was getting the long thin cane down from the top of the wardrobe and she was being given a choice between bending over the end of the bed herself and having five of the best, or being held down and having eight. Not much of a choice! She bent and clasped the bedspread. She could feel the end of the bed sticking into her stomach. Then five very hard strokes of the cane swished into the lower part of her large soft bottom. The first one had hurt the worst, she remembered, but they all hurt and god she had squawked; she still felt embarrassed about that. And worst of all Mother had watched; the humiliation of that had hurt worse than the cane and it still rankled.

“It still upsets you, I can see.” Mr Cox said after a brief sympathetic pause.

“It was my own bloody fault; I deserved it and I think my father did the right thing.” Elizabeth said stoically. “But it was not the last time I got the cane.”

“However is that?” Mr Cox asked, with an air of entering into territory he would rather not enter.

“When Al Thomas and I got caught out over our affair, because his wife told on us about nine or ten months ago, the Managing Director thought it was all Al’s fault. Normally they would have sacked me, the lowly little secretary, and kept Al because he was so high powered and all that. But the Managing Director had a crush on Al’s wife, you see, rather a romantic crush. I don’t think they ever went near a bedroom, and he was livid with Al, so Al got sacked anyway. And by the same token the Managing Director liked me and apparently, and rather strangely, Al’s wife was saying it was not my fault. Anyway, he offered me a choice. I could have the sack, with only a very moderate reference, which meant employment would be difficult, or I could stay, go down a grade for a while, but have a very sound six strokes of the cane on the seat of my knickers to teach me not to misbehave in future. Well I liked the firm, I was not that sure how easy it would be to get another job after being sacked. They weren’t giving me the choice of resigning, and I thought on previous experience it would be bearable.”

She paused, remembering her heart beating like a drum as she approached the Managing Director’s office at 6.15 pm while the rest of the building was completely empty; well except for the caretaker, who she never actually saw that evening and she suspected had been told to make himself scarce.

“You poor thing! There is really no need to tell me the rest.” Mr Cox said very kindly and quietly. “Unless you want to, that is.”

“No I probably don’t need to tell you and perhaps it is better if I don’t” She said, realizing tears were flowing down her cheeks. “Probably the fewer people who know about this the better it is.”

“I do think a little country air might be quite good for you, Miss Masefield.” Mr Cox found himself saying very suddenly. “After what sounds a dreadful experience and I think you will be genuinely good at guarding my front door. I am sure you will learn everything that you need to. I will go and tell the other two candidates you have got the job. I expect you would like twenty minutes to calm down and dry your tears. I am sorry, I did not mean to stir up such unpleasant memories, but at least you will have some idea of what some of our boys at least go through. I don’t normally cane that hard, you know, and indeed I prefer not to use the ultimate deterrent where ever possible; the threat is often more valuable. But do stay here and try and calm down. I will be back. I expect you will be ready for a cup of tea.”

He went out of the door thinking this was, on the face of it, the far too chivalrous appointment of a very hysterical woman, but nevertheless the right one for some reason he could not define, and he must stick with it.

She realized Mr Cox’s interesting ginger hair had gone through the door and it had shut. She glanced round uncomfortably. The light through the window was so oddly like the day she had been caned in her parents’ bedroom. There was the same blue sky and small white clouds. She shut her eyes to get away from it and realized she was reliving the even grimmer scene in the Managing Director’s office at six-fifteen on a Friday afternoon.

She knocked, thinking as she did it that she would tell Al about it after it was all over; she had purposely refrained in case he tried to stop her.

The door opened after a brief pause. The Managing Director was waiting for her in his waistcoat with his sleeves rolled up. His jacket was on the back of his chair and he had a horribly flexible looking cane in his hand. Then in the same instant she realized her lover’s wife was there.

“What’s she doing here?” She had demanded.

“To witness your punishment, of course, which I think after all you have done will be very salutary, and to hold you if there is any fuss.”

She realized Margaret was standing there gloating from under her carefully permed black hair in her loose pleated brown skirt and blue blouse. And Margaret was large and solid. There was no doubt she could and would hold her if necessary.

Elizabeth wondered if the Managing Director was aware of the odd compromise that had led her, Al and Margaret to do things together in the same bed for over six months. She remembered the salty taste of her lover’s wife. She also remembered being vigorously patted in the direction of a climax by Margaret, which she had not really liked, though Margaret humping her had been really rather good. And then there had been Margaret’s very mean suggestion that Elizabeth should be caned on her bare bottom for adultery and she should do it. Margaret had probably only intended it as a game, but Elizabeth Masefield had no intention at that point in her life of being caned again by anyone for any reason. It was after Elizabeth had refused to be caned by Margaret for at least the fifth or sixth time that Margaret had withdrawn from the triangle and announced her husband’s adultery to the world, which was so hypocritical. Oh well, if her lover’s wife was going to get the pleasure of witnessing this punishment she was going to have the pleasure of showing she could take it with almost no fuss. She quietly gritted her teeth.

Nobody said anything, so Elizabeth haughtily unzipped her skirt and wriggled out of it as if it was the most normal thing in the world, almost enjoying Margaret’s lascivious eyes watching her. She even wondered if there was a humping to be had after this whipping, but immediately dismissed the ridiculous thought. To his credit, the Managing Director seemed to look away. She took off her half-slip.

“I am ready.” She said as calmly as she could manage.

“Kneel on that chair and put your elbows on the desk.”

She realized a chair had been put there in preparation and she obeyed.

“I will deal with her tights and slip.” Margaret was saying briskly.

“Thank you, that would probably be best.” The Managing Director was saying rather nervously.

Almost certainly Margaret had talked him into this ridiculous farrago, Elizabeth decided, suddenly feeling very angry indeed about her rival’s presence; but with her knees kneeling aching on the hard wood of the chair and her elbows leaning on the desk it seemed rather late to object. She suddenly felt much less brave, but nevertheless she gritted her teeth, again determined not to make a fuss.

Elizabeth felt her full length nylon pink slip being eased above her waist, then her tights were slowly sliding down her buttocks and half way down her thighs, which she felt to be decidedly humiliating. For a second she felt sure that her very stylish white knickers were going to follow despite the firm promise that she had extracted in her disciplinary interview that they would stay up and she pleaded, rather ridiculously, forgetting all about being brave and not making a fuss. Possibly Margaret thought of lowering said knickers, but did not do it. Certainly there was a distinct pause before she declared everything was ready for her rival’s punishment. Quite possibly Margaret just enjoyed the pleading.

The cane tapped her bottom a couple of times, then swished with excellent timing, but not excessive force, into the crease between bottom and thighs. It stung slightly more than she remembered, and she yelped and started to blubber. Then there were three strokes at distinct intervals on her lower bottom while she more or less bit her lip. She realized through her tears and firmly restrained yelps that her bum was thrusting backwards and forwards and she wondered sardonically if Margaret was enjoying the view. Then there was a distinct pause.

“We aren’t really getting through to her.” To her horror, Elizabeth heard Margaret saying: “Let me do the rest.”

“If you must. I know you have wanted to do it all along.” The managing Director stated, sounding ambiguous.

“Please don’t let her do it!” Elizabeth cried out. “She will really hurt me!”

But it was no use. The remaining two strokes and the three extra that Margaret added without consultation with the managing director were far harder; and Elizabeth, as she writhed and squealed on the chair, could feel huge weals rising. Then it stopped while Margaret and the Managing Director argued fiercely, and Elizabeth really trembled then, but mercifully the Managing Director was saying very firmly that enough was enough and really it had only been supposed to be six strokes.

After that Margaret rather grudgingly contented herself with lowering Elizabeth’s knickers and running her finger along each welt in turn, while Elizabeth pleaded with her not to do it. Then she administered two huge slaps that really stung before remarking that this should teach Elizabeth to keep her hands off other women’s husbands. Elizabeth, with remarkable restraint, kept herself from saying something extremely rude as she thought of Margaret’s goings on with herself and presumably other members of the female sex.

Then she very gingerly got off the chair and pulled up her tights and pants. Realizing how swollen she was and wishing she had put a dress on and not such a tight skirt, she left off her half-slip, which she stuffed in her handbag. It was still quite a struggle to get her skirt back on, but she managed it, listening with annoyance to the Managing Director asking Margaret to have dinner with him. Was there anything real between those two, or not? Ought she to take notice of the blatant fact that Margaret was obviously still very keen on her; and she herself, despite her humiliation, was more attracted than she ought to be? It was hard to tell what course she should pursue. To the world she was in love with Al and probably she was expected to marry him, though she was not at all sure about it.

Then Elizabeth staggered out to the bus and stood up the whole way home. From a phone box, she called the landlady of the bedsit that Al had retired to from the home he had shared with Margaret for nearly twenty years. He had in fact gone out to the pub, so Elizabeth shrugged her shoulders and decided she could not be bothered to tell Al about it. She poured herself a very hot bath and soaked in it, which got rid of the worst of the aftermath of her caning, but she was sore from that thrashing for several days. This seemed to make Elizabeth more rather than less interested in sex and she and Al spent almost the whole of that weekend in bed making love, while she fantasised endlessly about Margaret. For a lot of the time that weekend, she imagined Margaret was caning her bare bottom, which was ridiculous.

Even more ridiculously, Al never mentioned her marks once during that mad weekend. Maybe he thought she had been with Margaret, which in a way she had. Maybe he knew the truth and ignored it out of politeness, or maybe he was just blind like so many men. Anyway, she could not be bothered to tell him what had happened if he lacked the eyes to see what had happened.

It was in the aftermath of that wild weekend that they rather disastrously moved in together. It ought to have been the culmination of the previous two years, but sadly the affair faded the more they were together and she had come almost to loathe her former lover. Curiously, at the same time she had come to miss Margaret, but had not felt able to do anything about it. Her life, she decided as she sat waiting for the headmaster and the cup of tea, was a total mess, but here at least was a pleasant refuge for a time. Who knows, she might even come to like the headmaster; he seemed a very sweet man and closer to her age than Al, and hopefully it would be a decent cup of tea. It might even be a good job.

The End

© Jane Fairweather 2017

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