A trick gets a girl sent off

By Richard Campbell

 

Randolf’s was a fine school with a long history of academic excellence. All the pupils were expected to work hard at their studies and do as well as they could at their exams. The school also prided itself on its sports prowess. The Headmaster and governors all believed the teamwork and leadership that came from team sports were equally as important as academic development.

Being in the 1st team of any of the school’s supported sports was an honour, but it also came with very high expectations. A desire to give one’s all, a desire to win, but tempered with fairness and sporting conduct, were prerequisite to being selected.

The Headmaster, Mr Elton, was watching a hockey match from his office window. He often watched from the touchline. Today he was inside, but he still had an excellent view.
It was early in the second half. The school was one-nil down, but Stephanie Anderson was leading from the front, as usual. A brilliant captain and fine leader. The ball was in Radolph’s half and St Jude’s were pushing forward. Julie Bishop, the full back, rushed out to meet the oncoming attack and won the ball pretty cleanly, but Mr Elton watched as the opposing player feigned a trip and landed on the ground. The referee blew the whistle, then hesitated for a moment. She called Bishop over, reached for her pocket and produced a red card! The crowd fell silent. Julie Bishop looked stunned.

Mr Elton watched as Bishop went to argue and then stopped and walked slowly off. It was five years since a Randolph team player had been sent off. A record in the league. He knew she would be walking towards his office. Every player knew the consequences of being sent off, whatever the circumstances.

Corporal punishment was rare in the school. Most pupils worked hard and behaved well. It was only retained for smoking, bullying and for members of the 1st teams, who agreed to a strict code of conduct. For the former two, it was offered as an alternative to expulsion.

It took Julie Bishop 5 minutes to make her way to the Head’s office. Mrs Jones sat outside and acted as gatekeeper.

“Good afternoon, Ms Jones. I am here to see the Headmaster.”

“OK, one second. I will let him know.” Ms Jones knew Julie didn’t have a booked meeting and saw her dressed in sports kit. She guessed the reason for the meeting. She rang through and spoke briefly.

“He’s asked you to take a seat and wait.”

Julie sat on one of the office chairs placed in a line against the wall. She sat quietly, contemplating the meeting, and feeling very nervous about what was to come. She knew she was likely to be banned from playing, and that was almost worse than the prospect of the corporal punishment she assumed was coming. Her parents had never spanked her, and she’d always been good at school. Now she assumed she was going from zero experience to getting the cane.

After five minutes the phone rang. Ms Jones answered, nodded and replaced the receiver. Julie’s heart pounded.

“You may go in.”

Julie stood, knocked on the Head’s door and entered without waiting.

The room was big. Plenty of space for a desk and chairs. There was a deep red carpet on the floor and wood-panelled walls. She walked forward and stood at attention in front of the desk, ignoring the two chairs also placed in front of the desk. Mr Elton looked up from his papers.

“How can I help you, Ms Bishop?”

Julie plucked up courage and spoke.

“I was sent off during the match, Sir.”

“Right, I see. In your own words, explain what happened.”

“I tackled an opposing player and although I believe I did so fairly, she ended up on the ground. The referee felt I fouled her, and she sent me off.”

“You accepted the decision?”

“Of course, sir. Everyone in the team knows that we are expected to play fairly. The referee felt I crossed the line. Her word is final, and I am here to accept whatever punishment you deem appropriate.”

“I commend your honesty in this matter and for accepting the referee’s decision. The guidelines in this matter are clear. The code of conduct you agreed to for your place in the 1st team specifically states that any member of a school team being sent off for unsporting behaviour is given corporal punishment. Six strokes of the cane.”

“Yes, sir,” Julie said nervously.

“Whatever the circumstances, that is the rule.”

“I understand, Sir.”

“I imagine you are expecting to be punished immediately?”

Julie looked down at the floor then slowly nodded.

“Delaying it doesn’t make it any easier. Better to get it over with and move on,” said Mr Elton.

He picked up the phone, waited, and then spoke.

“Could you join us, Ms Jones.”

Ms Jones entered and the Head spoke to her.

“Could you help Bishop get ready, please.”

“Yes, Headmaster.”

Ms Jones then spoke to Julie: “Please come over here.” The secretary pointed to one of the two office chairs in front of the headmaster’s desk. “No, behind its back.”

Meanwhile, Mr Elton had stood and was walking towards a cupboard in the corner.

“Undo your skirt and place it on the seat.”

In truth, the hockey skirt was barely covering the girl’s bottom, but that didn’t deter the secretary.”

Julie sighed and undid her skirt. It was a wrap-around pleated style. She folded it and put it on the seat pad. Her sports top was long sleeve and reached to her hips. She wore maroon games knickers, long socks and white trainers.

The Headmaster emerged from the corner cupboard carrying a cane that was 3 foot long and about as thick as Julie’s fingers. It looked dark and evil.

“Stand with your feet about a foot apart. Now bend over the back of the chair. Head down. Legs straight. Yes, that’s good. You must stay in that position until instructed. I suggest you grip the chair legs.”

Julie did as instructed, with butterflies in her stomach and fearful of how bad it was going to be. As she bent over, her buttocks flexed and changed shape, stretching her maroon gym knickers. She felt very vulnerable.

Ms Jones stepped away and Mr Elton approached. He stood to Julie’s left.

“Bishop. Being sent off in a school match is a serious matter. You damaged your own reputation and that of the school. Are you ready?”

A tear formed in Julie’s eye and trickled down her cheek.

“Yes, sir.”

She felt the cane rest on her bottom briefly, then withdraw. She gripped the chair, hard. The Head pulled the cane back to shoulder height and then sent it whistling down, striking horizontally across the middle of Julie’s bottom.

Julie grunted in a mix of shock and pain. It was much, much worse than she had imagined. The pain just seemed to be getting worse and worse. Then, after what seemed an eternity, it settled back to a dull ache.

The Head waited 30 seconds, knowing about the way the pain built, and then sent another stroke racing down to the waiting target. It struck with a meaty thwack, causing the flesh to deform as the energy transferred into heat and pain. Julie grunted louder this time and her body jerked rigid.

Again, the Head let the pain build and then recede before aiming the third stroke lower still on the waiting target. This time Julie’s response was more vocal, and she was panting as she struggled with the pain in her bottom. Her knuckles were white as she gripped the chair. She was desperately trying to take her punishment stoically.

The fourth aimed for the crease between buttocks and thighs. A very tender spot. This time Julie did cry out. Not loudly, but enough to convince the Head he was teaching an important lesson about actions and consequences.

The fifth stroke was above the first. Another groan. And a sniff to stifle tears. Bottom cheeks flexing and quivering inside maroon games knickers. The Head paused and looked at Ms Jones. She had a wry smile on her face. She’d never commented on this aspect of her role.

Mr Elton drew his attention back to Bishop’s waiting bottom. He knew there would be five distinct red wheals stretching horizontally across her normally pale cheeks. Time to add the sixth stripe. He drew the cane back further this time. Mr Elton liked tradition and it stated the last stroke was always the hardest.

Down came the cane, speeding towards its target. It struck, dead centre. Julie’s whole body went taught and she almost lifted the chair off the floor. Again, a cry, but controlled. Then she went limp knowing she’d reached the end of her ordeal.

The Head let her wait for a full minute, breathing deeply and sniffing back tears, draped over the back of the chair. Bottom high, sticking out in a most undignified way.

“Bishop. Your punishment is completed. You may stand and get dressed.”

Julie tried to rise. Spasms of pain swept her bottom. Her legs felt shaky. She used the chair to push herself upright. The Head walked to the corner, to return the cane to the cupboard and then back to his desk. Ms Jones approached and gave Julie a tissue and helped her replace her skirt. She then left the office.

Julie stood as best she could, facing the head. Her hands strayed under her skirt to lightly rub her very sore bottom. It felt like he’d used a burning hot brand not a small stick.

“Right, Bishop. You took that well. I was watching the match. I saw what happened. Normally, you would be stripped of your team membership as well, but in this case I will be writing to the headmistress of St Jude’s to complain about their player taking a dive and the poor refereeing. You will therefore remain a valued member of the team. I hope that pleases you.”

“Yes sir, oh yes, sir. Thank you, sir.”

“You may go.”

As Julie turned to go, they both heard a groan and then the final whistle.

The Head knew the team Captain would be along shortly to give him her report on the game.

Julie left the office and made her way quietly to her room. She was so focused on her own pain that she forgot all about the game’s result. Time to inspect the damage and apply a cold flannel to cool the pain. Still, she kept her team place and that is what really mattered to her.

The End

© Richard Campbell 2020