Elisabeth Bannerman’s School Daze: the wise fools

19Apr10

This story is part of the Rachel Kent universe.

“Mrs Bainbridge I assure you that I will not wear such a silly school outfit.” Elisabeth continued her protest.

Mrs Bainbridge waited until she was sure Rachel had gone and then she turned on her young charge. “I assure you that you will.”

With that, she rang a bell.

Elisabeth was still protesting when a rather dour woman and two maids appeared to usher her way. She was hauled off to a room that was a cross between a bathhouse and an infirmary.

“I am Mrs Craddock. I am the housekeeper and nurse here.” The dour woman said. “Now off with those things at once.”

“I beg your pardon.” Elisabeth gasped.

“You are so pardoned, now did you hear what I said?”

Mrs Craddock had been dealing with haughty young girls and women for over 20 years, so Elisabeth’s feeble protests were no barrier to her will. In four minutes the girl was kneeling naked in the bath while the two maids poured jugs of water of her and began scrubbing.

“I don’t need a bath.” Elisabeth wailed.

“They all say that miss.” The older maid said without missing a stroke of the bath brush as it cleaned Elisabeth’s back. “Now be good and I won’t have to apply this to your behind.”

“The very idea. How dare you talk to me like that?”

Any further protest was drowned by yet another jug of water being doused over her head by the other maid.

The inspection for lice and knits was particularly embarrassing but there was worse to come. Once she was half way dry and the maids had draped her in a towel Mrs Craddock returned.

“Nearly done.” She said soothingly.

But Elisabeth wasn’t very soothed. In the woman’s hand was a tube attached to a funnel.

“What are you going to do with that?” Elisabeth shook her head as a dim recollection touched her mind.

“Remove those towels now and turn her over.” Mrs Craddock said to the maids.

“What are you doing?” Elisabeth wailed.

“Use plenty of soap this time, you know what happened last time.” Mrs Craddock chided her maids.

“Please don’t.” Elisabeth struggled, but nonetheless found her self bent over the bath rim.

“Don’t fuss now miss.” The first maid told her. “Its only an enema.”

Elisabeth’s eyes went wide.

A while later, Elisabeth was so relieved to be getting dressed that she did not protest the ill-fitting hand-me-down school garb.

“Its just until we get you measured for your own.” The maid soothed. “Don’t worry we will make you nice for Mrs Bainbridge.”

Half an hour later Elisabeth was standing in the principal’s office.

“Now don’t you look nice?” Mrs Bainbridge smiled. “And no more nonsense about what you will and won’t and wear.”

“I really must protest.” Elisabeth began but already she knew she was half defeated.

In any case, Mrs Bainbridge held up her hand to silence her. Then she went to her cabinet and took out a long school cane.

After her earlier experience and the undoubted substance to the maids threats Elisabeth swallowed and wondered what was coming next.

“This is Peter.” Mrs Bainbridge said with a faraway smile. “He has a brother Paul that only the worst of my girls ever see. But you will find Peter persuasive enough if he ever needs to talk to you.”

Elisabeth sighed inwardly with relief that threat was for some future date.

“Peter has spoken to many many girls and young women over the years. Miscreant young ladies who thought they knew better than me. You see how polished and shiny he is?” Mrs Bainbridge continued. “That is the work of many years and hundreds, if not thousands of female bare bottoms. Did you know that a woman has a unique feminine oil to the flesh of her bottom and every time Peter speaks he gathers a little of it to himself. When I was a girl Peter even spoke to me. So if you really want to cross me he can certainly speak to you. Do we understand one another Elisabeth?”

“Yes.” Elisabeth licked her lips.

“I am not sure we do.” Mrs Bainbridge said with an edge to her voice.

She sliced the air suddenly making Elisabeth jump.

“Do we understand one another Elisabeth?”

“Yes.” Elisabeth said again. Adding. “I mean yes ma’am.”

“Good.” Mrs Bainbridge smiled and put Peter away. “That is very good to know.”

Then she rang the bell and the maid returned.

“Please take Elisabeth to Miss Coolidge’s class.”

The maid bobbed in a curtsey and led the way. Elisabeth knew she had been dismissed.

Elisabeth felt ridiculous and self-conscious in the juvenile dress. For a start it barely covered her knees and above that it was plain and sat awkwardly on her with a great white collar affair hanging around her neck.

But the maid cared nothing for that she had seen it all before and set a brisk pace. So much so that they soon came to a solid oak door on which the maid knocked.

“Come in.” Said a voice from inside.

The maid opened the door and they entered. Inside was the teacher, a smart but severe young woman with reddish hair, together with eight girls of various ages between, Elisabeth would guess, 15 to 19. They were all wearing the same childish rig, so she concluded she wasn’t the only girl of her own age who had fallen behind in her studies.

“Ah Elisabeth Bannerman, do come in and take a seat. We were just discussing English literature and what is and is not suitable reading in polite society.” Miss Coolidge indicated a seat near the front.

Elisabeth, free of the presence of Mrs Bainbridge and her repellent reception now behind her, she recovered some of her indignation.

“If I might interrupt.” Elisabeth said disdainfully. “I feel there has been a huge error. I should not be in this class at all.”

“Is that a fact? Nonetheless here you are.” Miss Coolidge said sourly. “So do take a seat while you are still able there is a good girl.”

The threat was mild enough, but after her confrontation with Peter and Mrs Bainbridge, Elisabeth was not yet up to the task of challenging Miss Coolidge’s authority. Instead, she blushed a little and walked neatly to the desk that had been indicated and sat down.

The lesson was awful. She knew few of the books or writers being discussed and every time she thought she knew where she was, the answer she might have given had proved to be clearly wrong. Not that she had any intention of participating in such a demeaning exercise.

After the lesson the girls all filed out, each one taking a moment to look her way as if to size her up. Elisabeth might have followed them but Miss Coolidge had motioned her to remain.

“Before you go to lunch I want to talk to you and show you to your room.” She said pleasantly enough.

“I see.” Elisabeth said as blandly as she could manage. “Thank you. But can I ask when my clothes will be returned to me?”

“Your clothes no doubt will have been taken to your room. What of it? You will wear these clothes until a suitable replacement is made and then you will wear that new uniform between breakfast on Monday and Suppertime on Friday. And since we are on the subject of rules, as a sophomore, you will be addressed as Elisabeth and you will address me as Miss Coolidge. You will also append a miss to the front of all the senior girls’ names.”

“I shall be 18 on Thursday, am I not regarded as a senior girl?” Elisabeth said with disdain.

“Ordinarily young women in the last year of school together with those who remain for advance classes or finishing are regarded as senior girls, that is to say girls of your age and older. However, I understand that your lessons have been neglected for the last two years and so you are not to be regarded as a senior. At this school because of the rather informal and varied nature of our students, we tend to be flexible in assigning status and classification for studies. Most of our new girls have had some kind of education at one of those quaint schoolhouses and so are at least 14 when they join us. During their first year the younger girls are our freshmen and then for a year or sometimes two, we regard them as sophomores. Thereafter, they are regarded as juniors until their last year when they become seniors. Of course, hopefully girls are only with us for four years unless the stay to be finished. You will finish out your sophomore year, but if you study hard perhaps you can expect to rejoin the senior class next year, if not then you will be with us for three years and will no doubt have to go east to be finished.”

Elisabeth was dumbstruck by the primitive nature of this so-called flexible system. She took a breath and drew herself up to protest when Miss Coolidge stopped her.

“Before you speak again Elisabeth, please be mindful to address me as Miss Coolidge.”

“Miss Coolidge, I will do my best to forbear this travesty of a school until the end of the week. Where upon being 18 I shall prevail upon my brother to take me out of this establishment and send me back east.”

“That will be his prerogative, Elisabeth and not yours. You are not in position to make such a decision until you are 21, when thankfully you will no longer eligible to remain here. So until then I suggest you apply yourself and complete your education.” Miss Coolidge said firmly. “Now if there are no more pronouncements you wish to make I will show you to your room.”

The room, to Elisabeth’s surprise, was even better than the one she had had in Denver. Then to her relief and surprise she found that the wardrobes and draws contained all her own clothes.

She took out the dress she had come in and laid it on the bed. She would show them, she thought.

“Not thinking of breaking the dress code are we?” Said a voice behind her.

Elisabeth turned to confront a young woman who was maybe two years older than her dressed in a plain but respectable dress.

“I am Maud Parker.” She smiled and offered Elisabeth her hand. “I am the hall monitor.”

Elisabeth felt sillier than ever dressed as a child with a girl who up until that morning she would have considered an equal. Darn this outfit, she thought.

“I am Elisabeth Bannerman.” Elisabeth said.

“Oh I know who you are.” Maud chuckled. “Word of a new girl spreads as if by Indian drums around here.”

“I see.” Elisabeth bristled. “What is a hall monitor anyway?”

“I am in charge of this floor. I see that the maids do their jobs properly and that all the juniors and sophomores get to their beds on time come lights out. The seniors too if the truth was known.”

“Are you a teacher here?”

“Heavens no.” Maud laughed; she had a nice laugh and seemed genuinely friendly. “I am a senior.”

“A head girl?”

“Sort of. But just for this landing.” Maud smiled. “So like I say you are not thinking of breaking the dress code on your first day, are you?”

Elisabeth shrugged, feeling like a kid caught with her hand in the cookie jar.

“Have you met Peter yet?”

“Kind of.” Elisabeth blushed. “We didn’t have what Mrs Bainbridge called a conversation.”

“She gives that speech to all the new girls.” Maud laughed. “I can pretend I didn’t see you, but if you go to luncheon in anything but that school uniform you will have a serious chat with Peter I promise.”

Elisabeth nodded and forced a tight smile.

“Thanks Maud.”

“Its my job to guide you.” Maud said turning to leave. “By the way you should call me Miss Maud. Oh I know it’s a bore, but rules are rules. So consider that your first warning.”

Once her new friend had gone, Elisabeth picked up the dress and returned it to the wardrobe with a shrug, she didn’t feel like talking to Peter today.

The dinning room was full of girls in blue knee length outfits like hers. Looks like a sailors’ convention, Elisabeth thought.

On one side of the room were several tables that were occupied by girls in normal street clothes. Elisabeth noticed that although they all tended to be slightly older than the others and there were no young girls among them, age was no guide to any of the girl’s attire. In fact there were at least as many girls older than her dressed as she was as there were younger.

Just then, a girl about her own age came to her.

“I am Isabelle Widows.” She said with a giggle. “I am to show you around today. I was in your class earlier?”

“Yes I saw you. I am Elisabeth Bannerman.”

“I know that silly.” The girl giggled. “You can sit with us for lunch.”

Despite herself, Elisabeth enjoyed her lunch. It had been a long time since she had a chance to indulge in a conversation with girls of her own age and background.

“Don’t you think it ridiculous to have to wear such silly outfits at our age?” She confided. “After all I will be 18 on Thursday.”

Isabelle traded glances with the other girls at this. Then said:

“Oh you are so right. I live in constant fear that I may get sent on an errand during school time and have someone see me like this.”

The girls at their table giggled at the image.

The afternoon classes were just as disagreeable as the one in the morning. She had almost ventured to ask what was the point of geometry, but thought better of it. The teacher, Miss Wheatfield, was a large woman of about 30. She talked fast and had yet to smile. However, what intimidated Elisabeth the most was the small paddle that she kept toying with and the even larger one that hung on the wall.

The next class was held in the same room and they were told to reconvene there after a short recess.

Mrs Grace took the last class of the day, geography. She was tall and thin and probably at least 60, by far the oldest person Elisabeth had seen at the school. Her enthusiasm for all things European began to grate by halfway through the lesson, not because Europe was not interesting, but because it was plain to Elisabeth that Mrs Grace had probably not even been as far as Boston and had almost certainly never been to Paris.

“Oh girls you should see Paris in the spring.” Mrs Grace gushed with her eyes glazed over as if she were revisiting it in her mind. “Oh to see Notre Dame and the Sacre Bleu.”

She pronounced Dame, daim instead of darm, which set some of the girls to giggling.

One of the girls even set to mimicking the teacher behind her back.

“Excuse me Mrs Grace, surely you mean the Basilique du Sacré-Cœur? I thought sacre bleu was some sort of curse word in France.” Isabelle offered.

“Oh no Isabelle.” Mrs Grace simpered. “But of course the other is very famous as well.”

“Thank you for correcting me.” Isabelle said without irony.

Elisabeth felt a fool, realising that she was just as ignorant as the poor teacher, although so were most of the girls here she would bet.

“Oh Paris is the very centre of civilisation.” Mrs Grace continued.

As she said it the girl behind mimicked the self same words. Mrs Grace obviously gave the same speech often. Unfortunately, this time Mrs Grace turned to catch her.

“What are you doing girl?” Mrs Grace’s sunny disposition suddenly melted away.

“Nothing Miss.” The girl said, turning white.

“Don’t have the audacity to lie to my face I saw you.”

“I.” The 18-year-old redheaded girl with about million freckles looked frantically about for some salvation.

“Stand up.” Mrs Grace snapped taking the poor girl by the ear.

She was led to the corner and told to put her hands on her head and not look around.

Although the girl had to stay there for the rest of the class, the episode did have a salutary effect on the rest of the lesson. Mrs Grace suddenly seemed to remember that she was supposed to be talking about North American Geography, a subject in which she was much better versed.

At the end of the class Mrs Grace did not wait for the students to leave before she hauled the redhead out of the corner and had her raise her skirts. She quickly parted her draws to reveal possible the whitest bottom Elisabeth had ever seen. Then bending the girl over her desk she proceeded to administer a spanking with the small paddle.

Most of the class hurried out before the paddling got underway, but Isabelle held Elisabeth’s arm and seemed to want to dawdle.

“This is.” Elisabeth gaped. “Oh my.”

“She always goes so very bright red at both ends.” Isabelle giggled. “Poor Janie.”

“Ow.” Janie exclaimed at the 10th swat then. “Eeeee!”

“I’ll teach you to mind your manners you spoilt little girl.” Mrs Grace blustered.

Elisabeth, Isabelle and two or three others watched the spanking to the end, by which time Janie was in floods of tears. Then unlike her fellows, she had to return to the corner without repairing her dress.

“Off you go girls this is not a fairground sideshow.” Mrs Grace clapped her hands and ushered them out.

“You want to bet.” Isabelle whispered to the still shocked Elisabeth.

Then Mrs Grace, to give a lie to her words wedged open the door so that any passers by could see Janie’s scarlet behind peeking out between her snow white linen.
By the end of her first day, Elisabeth was ready to go over the wall. The spanking would have unnerved her more but she was still a little cowed by her earlier experience in the infirmary. An experience, which she had decided, had not happened. She would have liked to have said she had never heard of such a thing, but Mary Collins at her old school had related horror tales of her own upbringing and her mother’s views on punishment enema’s. Elisabeth had shuddered then and would have sworn that never in her life would she submit to such a thing.

With the day finally over, Elisabeth was happy to get to bed and despite the horrors of this school, it was such a blessing to have her own proper room again.

*

The next morning she was awoken by the maid. She was a small girl who clearly had no background in real service. Elisabeth could tell by the brusque way that she told her that her bath had been filled and she was to come at once. Elisabeth was beginning to wonder if she could get used to this as she dressed in a robe and walked down the hall to the bathroom.

The sight that greeted her was a shock. The room was full of naked girls either bathing or waiting to for a vacant bath. The room had about 12 baths and four maids to assist, but there were at least 20 girls waiting to bathe. She had been about to flee back to her room when Maud appeared behind her.

“Come along Elisabeth get undressed.” Maud said impatiently. “We haven’t got all day.”

“Please Maud I can bathe later.”

“You will bathe now.” Maud chided. “And I told you its Miss Maud to you. Please try to remember.”

Elisabeth had never felt so self-conscious. This was almost as bad as yesterday’s encounter in the infirmary.

As she stood naked and shivering, guarding her breasts with one arm and her front with the other she noticed she wasn’t alone in her blushing. Several of the girls, including Janie, had very red bottoms and other signs of recent correction. At her old school, it was rare that a student would be summoned to the principal for correction, but here it seemed that it was a daily event.

“Oh my gosh.” She gasped as a girl who had been kneeling in the bath stood up.

It was easy to see now why she had been kneeling. Her bottom was positively purple and bore numerous dark track marks across her entire bottom cheeks.

“Mrs Bainbridge.” She shrugged when she caught Elisabeth looking. “I was seen with my beau.”

Elisabeth had to agree that seeing a boy would have warranted a trip to the principal at her former school, but this was far too severe surely?

The rest of the day was much as the previous day had been. Only this time her classmates managed to avoid being spanked.

On the following day it was also much the same but as Elisabeth was returning from class to put her books in her room she noticed a line of girls outside one of the class rooms. Instead of forming an orderly line, they were all turned to face the wall. She realised at once that it was a punishment of some kind, then the door opened and a weeping senior emerged.

The girl scowled at her and tried to suppress her tears but then clutched at her bottom and broke into fresh sobs. Then she hurried to join the end of the line facing the wall. The girl nearest the door took a deep breath and went into the room and the all moved up one place. It was then that Elisabeth noticed that all three girls on the end were in some kind of distress.

“Heavens.” She exclaimed. “What have you all done?”

“Go away brat.” One of the unpunished seniors hissed.

The girl couldn’t have been more than a year older than Elisabeth so it galled her to be addressed as a mere child. Perhaps these girls deserved all they were getting, she shrugged and went to her room.

The following morning the bath time rituals were just as grim, but at least Elisabeth had finally turned 18. At the week’s end, she could demand that her brother take her out of school and she could go back east or even England to a proper finishing school.

After her bath time she had another surprise. She was called into see the school’s housekeeper to be fitted for her new school uniforms. She was told that she would have two and they would both be ready by Monday.

“Won’t you be pleased to get out of this hand-me-down?” The woman enthused as if she expected Elisabeth to be genuinely pleased.

“I can’t wait I am sure.” Elisabeth said tartly.

As she had to return late to her first class with a note so that her tardiness would be excused, she dawdled a bit and took the long way around. With any luck class will be nearly over by the time I arrive, she thought. As she passed some of the other classrooms, she heard evidence of correction in several of them.

She paused at one door and listened to a whistling-thwack followed by a yelp. She had no doubt about the target but she wondered what kind of implement was being used. The thwack part sounded decidedly heavy and the yelps quickly became decidedly wet.

“Now girl let that be a lesson to you, now get to the corner until the end of class.” Came a cross voice from beyond the door. “Did I tell you to cover up? Get that hemline up at once.”

Elisabeth felt strangely tempted to peek, but somewhere she heard a door open so she hurried on.

The rest of the day was rather uneventful. Except that at the evening meal several of the girls, including Isabelle were whispering between themselves. Whenever she enquired what was going in on, she was greeted with an exaggerated politeness.

“Oh nothing we were just talking about our beaus.” She was told.

One more day, she thought. On Saturday, she was going home. Home, when did Tom’s ranch become home, she wondered. The sooner I go to bed the sooner I get to wake up, what a rotten birthday, she sighed,

Back in her room, she was no sooner in her nightgown, when there was a knock at the door.

“Who is it? I am going to bed.” She called out.

The door opened and in came Isabelle, Janie and three others she hardly knew.

“You didn’t think we let your birthday go unmarked did you.” Isabelle smiled.

With that she held out a small wrapped gift.

“Oh how lovely.” Elisabeth exclaimed.

She unwrapped it quickly to find perfume.

“It’s from us all.” Isabelle said.

“Thank you.” Elisabeth said taking her new friends hands in both of hers.

“There is one more thing before we start the midnight feast.” Janie said with a smirk on her lips.

Elisabeth looked up and saw that one of the girls had opened a bundle on her bed containing small cakes and other goodies.

“Oh my what is going on?” Elisabeth giggled.

“I am afraid you have to have a birthday spanking.” Isabelle said solemnly.

“I don’t think so.” Elisabeth said uncertainly.

But she could already see the girls were moving in to corner her.

“Look this is not really my sort of custom.” Elisabeth protested backing away. “I mean isn’t it for children.”

“Get her girls.” Janie squealed.

The girls all rushed her and dragged her to the bed where she was bent over the end.

“Get off me you beasts.” Elisabeth protested.

But her friends took no notice and began dragging up her nightgown to her armpits.

“Not a bad target.” Isabelle whistled in delight, then with mock solemnity. “Bring forth the sacred carpet slipper.”

Janie handed her one of Elisabeth’s own slippers.

“You can’t do this.” Elisabeth struggled in vain, but she had a girl sitting on each arm.

“Now the Bainbridge School rules say that a girl must accept a spanking with dignity. So, you must say thank you for each spank or it won’t count. Do you understand?” Isabelle giggled. “Eighteen today, so let us begin. One.”

“No please.” Elisabeth squealed as the first spank landed with a sting.

There was a long pause as Elisabeth wriggled a gasped.

“Did you hear anything?” Isabelle asked.

“I didn’t.” Janie shrugged.

“One.” Isabelle delivered another swat.

“That’s two you witch.” Elisabeth yelped.

“What was that?”

“You can’t do this.” Elisabeth raged.

“One.” Isabelle delivered another harder this time.

“Ow. That’s three.” Elisabeth wailed.

Janie cocked an ear with her hand in a mocking way.

“One.” Isabelle took another heavy swat.

Just then the door opened and Maud came in.

“Please Maud help.” Elisabeth called muffled by her assailants.

“How many times must I tell you its Miss Maud?” Maud laughed. “Try to keep it down some of the girls are sleeping.”

With that, she was gone.

“One.” Isabelle lay on as hard as she could.

“Oooh.” Elisabeth groaned. “Thank you.”

“That’s better. Two.”

“Thank you.” Elisabeth growled sullenly.

The rest of her birthday spanking went without a hitch and once it was over, they all had a good look at her reddened bottom.

“What a lovely colour.” Janie grinned handing Elisabeth a small cake.

“You beast.” Elisabeth pouted as she rubbed her bottom.

Then the door opened again and the maid came in with hot chocolate all round.

“Miss Maud said you would be wanting this.”

“Thank you.” Janie said moving to help her dole it out.

“You are going to be a sport aren’t you?” Isabelle asked.

“I suppose.” Elisabeth said ruefully still rubbing her bottom.

*

Elisabeth had never been so happy to get into her adult clothes and when Tom arrived to take her home on Saturday, she sighed with relief.

“This is quite a drive for just two days.” He said as they set out.

Elisabeth waited for him to say more but her went on to chatter about the ranch.

As the ranch came into view, she suddenly thought more fondly on the civilised meals and even the baths. The felling of anticlimax did not yield as she entered her small attic room.

Rachel wanted to know everything and despite prompting, Elisabeth missed several chances to protest her stay at the school.

“You even have a maid there I hear.” Rachel gushed.

Elisabeth responded by exaggerating the luxury and praising her school bedroom.

“I am so glad.” Rachel said. “You know I really had my doubts about that school.”

“Its not so bad I suppose.” Elisabeth found herself saying.

“Good because I think you should stay until the end of term. It’s a long way for you and Tom travel just for what amounts one night at home.” Elisabeth felt she should protest but the ride in the awful wagon had not been the highlight of her Saturday morning and she found herself wondering what high tea in her best clothes would be like with the other girls at the Bainbridge School.

“Good then that is settled.”

“Yes Ma’am.” She sighed. Maybe it is for the best, she thought.

By the time she returned to school on Sunday evening she was exhausted. Nevertheless, she found time for a decent supper in her Sunday best and all the horror stories and undignified experiences of the previous week seemed like a distant memory.

Monday therefore was to be a rude awakening.

First, she had to confront the new uniforms, which although a better fit, had sense of finality about them. She was here for the duration, she thought.

Then that evening things got rather worse.

She was returning to her room after supper when she passed Maud on the stairs.

“Oh Maud be a perfect dear and ask the maid who does my room not to use quite so much starch in my sheets” Elisabeth said airily.

“Elisabeth Bannerman for your information the laundry is sent out to the Chinaman’s, so it has nothing to do with the staff, we all have to contend with the same bed linen.” Maud snapped. “Also I have had enough of your snotty ways. How many times have I told you to address me as Miss Maud.”

“I’m sorry Maud I do forget, really I do.”

Maud stood opened mouthed at her charge’s carelessness.

“Come with me.” She snapped. “Come with me this instant.”

Elisabeth followed her prickly friend, completely mystified by her change in attitude.

Maud led her along the corridor to her own room. Which Elisabeth thought very grand, it being at least twice the size of her own.

“Maud what a lovely room you have.” Elisabeth exclaimed.

By now, Maud was looking quite agitated. She went to her wardrobe and removed a long-handled battledore paddle. Despite its size, it was light in her hands on account of the thinness of the wood, which rendered it extremely pliant and springy.

“Now Elisabeth would you be so kind as to raise the hem of your gown and your petticoats and bend over.” Maud said firmly.

“But Maud.” Elisabeth blushed. “You can’t mean to do it? Whatever have I done?”

“Miss Maud you ungrateful brat.” Maud snapped. “Now bend over.”

Elisabeth could see that Maud was not to be argued with and although uncertain as to Maud’s rights in this matter, she certainly didn’t want to draw any attention to this humiliating episode.

“May I lean on the bend?” Elisabeth swallowed.

Maud nodded her assent and Elisabeth reached under her skirts.

Once she was fully bent over, Maud was invited to present her bottom a little more.

“A little more if you please.” Maud said impatiently.

Once she was satisfied with Elisabeth’s position she untied the drawstrings and allowed the girl’s bloomers to fall to her ankles.

“Oh please no.” Elisabeth gasped.

“What a delightful apple you have.” Maud said in admiration as she studied the sophomore’s bare bottom.

“Oh Please.” Elisabeth wailed.

Then Maud delivered the first splat.

Elisabeth at once leaped to her feet and danced around the room.

“Cease this childish exhibition at once.” Maud said indignantly. “Bend over at once and if you move again I will summon the maid to hold you.”

Terrified with the threat of a witness Elisabeth obeyed instantly.

The second splat cause her to sag at the knees and let out a long drawn out wail.

Once Maud was satisfied that Elisabeth could and would hold position, she began to spank to a rhythm.

In short order the girl’s virgin pale bottom was rendered fiery red and it was all she could do to stay bent over. As it was she wagged her behind and bobbed violently at the knees.

“How must you address me?” Maud asked crisply.

“Miss Maud.”

“How must you address me?”

“Miss Maud, Miss Maud.”

With each question Maud delivered a swat. And she repeated it often until Elisabeth broke down in heavy tears.

“Alright now stand up and go and stand in the corner.”

“Yes Miss Maud.” Elisabeth sobbed.

“I didn’t tell you to repair your dress.” Maud snapped.

“No Miss Maud.” Elisabeth wept as she let her draws fall to her ankles again and rucked up her hemline.

Maud watched as she scurried to the corner and once she had happy with the girls’ deportment picked up a book and settled down to read.

It was almost an hour later that Maud put the book down.

“How must you address me?”

“Miss Maud, Miss Maud.” Elisabeth said meekly muffled by the corner.

“Alright you silly goose pull your things up and get out.”

“I’m sorry.” Elisabeth wept having lost a friend. “I am sorry you don’t like me anymore.”

“Oh of course I do silly but you have to learn or you’ll get us both into trouble.”

Elisabeth rushed forward and gave Maud a hug.

“I’m sorry Miss Maud.”

“Don’t forget again or I will give you another spanking.”

Back in her room, Elisabeth examined her bottom in her long mirror. There were no real bruises, but it had stung so and now she could not believe how red it was.

“I wonder if Miss Maud will spank me again.” She sighed before she drifted of to sleep.

*

The next day Elisabeth examined her bottom to discover very little bruising and only some modest redness. It was enough to make bath time embarrassing, especially as she could not meet Maud’s eye.

“Good morning Elisabeth. Did you sleep well?” Maud asked as she was standing in line for the bath.

“Yes thank you Miss Maud.” Elisabeth blushed. She felt a strange thrill at her public submission, although she could hardly do otherwise.

Maud returned a warm smile and nodded encouragingly.

Later that day Elisabeth had a class with Miss Coolidge. At first, it went well, but then as class continued, Miss Coolidge suggested a quiet spell of reading.

After a period of the enforced silence, a girl on Elisabeth’s right, Edith Yates, began to fidget and whisper with her neighbour. Then when Miss Coolidge’s back was turned Edith handed Elisabeth a note.

“Pass it to Janie.” She hissed.

Elisabeth thought the best thing to do was do as she was asked, but to her it felt both childish and dangerous to play such games. The twittering to her right continued until after a while Janie skilfully flicked a note onto Elisabeth’s desk while staring straight forward. Determined not be dragged into the game Elisabeth carefully pocketed the note.

“Pass it over.” Edith hissed.

The girl she had been talking to giggled openly, drawing a scolding from Miss Coolidge. Elisabeth pretended not to notice and continued with her reading.

“Pass it over.” Edith insisted under her breath.

Elisabeth glanced at Miss Coolidge and then quickly passed the note.

The reply was not long in coming.

“Pass it to Janie.” Edith said jabbing the air towards Janie.

Elisabeth quickly passed it on and returned to her book. But after only a few moments, another note from Janie skipped across her desk and landed on the floor.

“Aren’t you going to pick that up?” Miss Coolidge said without turning around from writing on the board.

Elisabeth sat transfixed her eyes fixed on the pages of her book.

“Well?” Miss Coolidge pressed, then after another moment turned round and walked over to the piece of paper.

She unravelled it and read it briefly then crumpled it up and tossed it in the wastebasket. Then she turned to Elisabeth and took the book out of her hand turned it the right way up.

“Elisabeth Bannerman I was talking to you.”

“I didn’t throw it Miss.” Elisabeth said in rising panic.

“Oh I know.” Miss Coolidge replied tartly. “Janie threw it, didn’t you Janie?”

“Yes Miss.” Janie said duly standing up.

Elisabeth looked sideways at Edith, but the girl had her eyes fixed on her desk.

“Alright both of you, step out here.”

“Please Miss I.” Elisabeth began to protest.

Edith looked up and scowled. Janie shook her head with an almost imperceptible motion.

“Yes Miss.” Elisabeth said miserably.

“I will not have notes passed in my class.” Miss Coolidge scolded. “Bend over my desk with your derrières facing the class at once.”

Janie did not hesitate, so Elisabeth reluctantly followed suit. As she glanced sideways at Janie, she saw that although Janie had been through this indignity before the girl was blushing at least as much as she was.

Miss Coolidge carefully turned up each of the girl’s skirts and petticoats and fastened them to the small each girl’s back with a small button Elisabeth had never noticed before that had obviously been put there for that purpose. Even as Elisabeth gasped at the shame of it, she felt a rush of air at her bottom as it was bared with the parting of her draws.

Elisabeth might have jumped up at this point but Janie did not move and just remained bent over with her eyes facing forward. Then Miss Coolidge picked up a paddle and moved behind both girls.

Elisabeth heard it make contact with Janie’s bottom first and both saw and felt her friend lurch forward with a grunt. Then Elisabeth felt her own impact. The heavy sting was far worse than the previous night’s spanking at Maud’s hands and Elisabeth yelped out loud. Then she knew it was Janie’s turn again.

The spanking before the class lasted five minutes as Miss Coolidge slowly swatted both targets alternately. During this time, the class enjoyed the spectacle of one pink and one white bottom being harmonised to a deep crimson. Long before she as done Janie’s stoicism was over and both girl’s were wailing continuously, a sound punctuated only by the splat of the paddle and each girl’s wet growl as impact was made.

Once they had been told to rise and stood sobbing in front of the class, Janie knew what was coming next. To Elisabeth it was a shock.

“Now go outside and cut me a switch each and return here.” Miss Coolidge snapped.

Pulling herself together Janie took Elisabeth’s hand and led her from the room.

“Leave your dress alone.” Janie hissed. “We’ll both catch it.”

“But I am still bare behind.” Elisabeth wailed.

“That’s the point stupid.” Janie choked back a sob.

“But we have to go outside.” Elisabeth cried.

“Best be quick then.”

Janie knew where to go and led Elisabeth down the side of the schoolyard away from the street.

“This is so bad.” Elisabeth gasped.

“Here.” Janie handed Elisabeth a switch that she had cut with a small penknife that she kept for the purpose.

“I don’t have a knife what if you hadn’t been here?” Elisabeth gaped looking about for any witnesses.

“Then you would have to go and ask the gardener.”

“Oh my.” Elisabeth flushed.

“Why do you think I have this?”

The girls wasted no time returning to Miss Coolidge’s class thankful that no one saw them.

“Alright ladies put your noses in each corner and frame those cherry red behinds for me until after class. Then I will find a use for those switches.” Miss Coolidge said lightly.

Janie hastened to the corner and held the switch in both hands under her bottom so that it was indeed framed. Elisabeth gaped at the shameful indignity of it and then reluctantly followed suit.

It was a long class for Elisabeth as she could feel half a dozen pairs of eyes on her bottom and almost hear Edith and her friend’s giggles. She fully expected no one to leave when the time came for the second part of her correction, but when she was released from the corner only the three of them remained.

“I know very well that a third bottom should be here, but sometimes the guilty escape. I dare say that if it would have gotten you off a switching then the girl concerned would have stepped forward Elisabeth, but be assured it would not. You feel a maligned party in this I am sure, but you did participate knowing it was wrong did you not?”

“Yes Miss.” Elisabeth’s rage at the injustice evaporated with these words.

“Perhaps you think me overly harsh?” Miss Coolidge continued. “But I find girls like Janie here take a little paddle spanking in their stride and sometimes I think even court it a little.”

Janie blushed to her ears at this.

“I find a good switching on a well spanked bottom works wonders. Now girls to business.” Miss Coolidge said brightly. “Janie bend over the desk.”

Elisabeth had to watch as Janie handed Miss Coolidge the switch and bent over to present her already well-spanked bottom. There was something obscene about the way it was thrust up to their view. Then the first swipe bisected it.

“Oh yah.” Janie gasped.

She tried to hold her peace for the next few and then she was sobbing out her yelps. Elisabeth watched in fascinated horror as dark lines stained Janie’s flesh even against the vivid red and bloomed into raised welts.

The swish-thwack continued at a pace for several minutes and then Miss Coolidge stopped. Janie seemed surprised.

“I will split this into two halves for both of you. Its more interesting that way.” Miss Coolidge smiled as if giving a lesson. Which she was of course.

The teacher waited patiently for Elisabeth to take her place. Elisabeth for her part tried to make her legs move. In the end, Miss Coolidge took her by the arm and gently led her to the desk and eased her to a bending position.

After the first stinging cut, Elisabeth’s correction defied all analysis and she could not have even said if she cried out or not, although she certainly did.

She did not take in Janie’s second turn over the desk, as all too soon it was her turn again. Then Miss Coolidge’s method became clear. The second set of strokes hurt far beyond the first and Miss Coolidge had to hold Elisabeth down with a hand on her back as she finished up.

Elisabeth lay sobbing for quite a while before she was helped up and by the then Janie had already been back in the corner for a while.

“You’re Rachel Bannerman’s sister-in-law aren’t you?” Miss Coolidge whispered.

Elisabeth nodded as she struggled to draw a breath.

“Took it well for a first time. I am sorry I had to be hard on you, but you will almost get used to it. Almost.”

“Thank you Miss.” Elisabeth wept. “And I am sorry.”

Then she pulled herself together to spend the rest of recess with her nose in the corner before her next class.

The next lesson was murder on her behind and she was scolded twice for fidgeting.

“I’m sorry miss I can’t.” She wept again.

The rest of the girls began to laugh. All except Janie and Edith.

“OK stand behind your desk both of you. I can see you have had trying time as well Janie.” Mrs Grace suggested.

“Thank you ma’am” Janie sighed and began rubbing her behind.

“I did not give you leave for an exhibition.”

“No Ma’am.”

The rest of the lesson was embarrassing but a merciful release.

Later that evening having skipped dinner Elisabeth was laying face down on her bed with her blistered bottom mooning the ceiling when Maud came.

“Been in the wars you goose?”

“And then some.” Elisabeth blushed moving a bed sheet over her nakedness.

“Don’t cover yourself I have some goose grease for your hiney.” Maud smiled.

Elisabeth blushed.

Then as Maud gingerly applied the soothing coolness Elisabeth asked:

“Miss Maud were you ever switched?”

“Not By Miss Coolidge.” Maud said emphatically. “She’s rough.”

“My grandmother was keen though, I had it this bad a few times.” Maud chuckled. “I have had the paddle many times and twice I had a chat with Peter.”

“Oh my I can’t imagine. Oh ouch” Elisabeth winced as Maud touched a sensitive spot.

“Why not I haven’t always been a monitor.” Maud laughed.

“When was the last time?”

It was Maud’s turn to blush.

“I had an encounter with the paddle about a month before you came.”

Elisabeth giggled at this.

“Seniors are not immune, not even those here for finishing.” Maud joined in with the laughter.

After Maud had left, Elisabeth did as she was told and left her bottom bare with the bed sheet rolled down to her thigh tops, then she slept like a log.

*

The next day standing in the bathroom queue was an ordeal as Janie and her had to put up with jeers and comments about the state of their behinds.

“Won’t be sitting this month.” Called one.

“And neither will you unless you keep quiet.” Maud snapped.

“Ouch. That looks bad.” Edith said with a sympathetic wince. “I’m real sorry. Thanks for not telling on me.”

Up until then Elisabeth had been ready to get her revenge but with Edith’s words she remembered what Miss Coolidge had said about taking part willingly.

“I don’t think being a tattle-tale would have gotten me off somehow.” Elisabeth replied ruefully. “But you definitely owe me one.”

“Oh you can count on that.” Edith said with another glance at her new friend’s welted behind. “Boy that is real colourful.”

“You think.” Elisabeth grimaced.

*

The days turned into weeks and Elisabeth settled into the routine at Bainbridge school. She didn’t know how it happened but instead of thinking about Denver and how she was going to get east, she started taking part in school life and the lives of her friends, Isabelle, Janie, Edith and especially Maud.

The sight of recently punished bare bottoms in the corners of schoolrooms and even sometimes in the corridors outside stopped being such a shock to her and indeed, she indulged in her fair share schadenfreude. Elisabeth even went to the trouble to secure for herself her own pocketknife, just in case. A precaution that was to prove a wise on as it turned out.

In fact barely a week passed in Miss Coolidge’s class when one or more of her fellows weren’t spanked as a prelude to being sent to cut a switch and barely a month when it wasn’t Elisabeth herself. Although none of them ever passed a note in class again or ever repeated any offence, once they had been punished for it.

Not that it ever deterred them from any pranks.

One night they had gathered in Isabelle’s room to look at some pictures of actors and stage productions in a magazine about New York. Four of them had all knelt on the floor in row and covered their heads and a lantern with the bed covers to read. It hadn’t taken Maud long to discover them and keeping them in position had bared each of their bottoms and spanked them all with gusto with her battledore one after the other. Then she had sat down with them to continue looking at the magazine.

“Oh Maud you are such a caution.” Elisabeth pouted as she rubbed her still naked behind.

“Miss Maud.” Maud had growled in mock anger pointing the battledore at her.

“Yes Miss Maud.” Elisabeth sighed poking out her tongue.

*

A few weeks after the episode with the New York magazine word went around the school that Beauregard Duvall was in town. Mr Duvall was a famous actor and singer back east and there was not a girl in school who would not have died for a glimpse of him.

“We could sneak out after our last class while the others are at supper.” Isabelle suggested.

“It will all end in tears.” Maud said as she happened upon the conversation. “If I catch you after lights out I will paddle your tails until you’re tender for a week.”

“Oh please Miss Maud it will be worth it.” Isabelle gushed.

And so the plan was hatched that four of them, Isabelle, Edith, Janie and Elisabeth would steal out after class. After much debate, it was decided that they would change into street clothes or else risk drawing attention to themselves and anyway they could not think of meeting Mr Duvall dressed as silly schoolgirls.

The first hurdle was to get down the back stairs without Maud seeing them. She would have been obliged to ‘arrest’ them for being incorrectly attired. This challenge met and wrestled to the ground, they found themselves in the street beside the school. Elisabeth noted with some consternation that she could clearly see where they had to go cut their switches, which was not as private as they had assumed. The sight also filled her some trepidation as to their fate if they were to be caught.

The others displayed no hesitancy and the four of them were soon strolling down Main Street as if on an evening promenade.

“I guess he will be at the hotel.” Janie suggested.

“I guess.” Edith agreed then turning to a deputy on patrol she asked. “I say young man do you happen to know where we can find Mr Beauregard Duvall.”

“You mean that music hall fellow?” The Deputy said scratching his ear. “I do believe he left for Independence this afternoon.”

“Oh shoot.” Janie exclaimed.

“Hey how comes I ain’t seen you girls around town afore now?” The Deputy suddenly woke up to the four pretty girls. “Are you playing hooky from Mrs Bainbridge’s school? This ain’t no place for fine ladies to be out and about it’s near dark.”

“Well thank you for your assistance Deputy we will be on our way.” Edith replied waving her friends away behind her back.

“Hold on miss.”

The four of them made a break for it. They had the presence of mind to not to take a direct route back to school and thankful the deputy had better things to do.

As it was, the gates were closed and it was with some difficulty that they found a side window. They had just made it in when a door opened.

“You girls. Yes you seniors come here.”

The four of them stopped in their tracks suddenly aware that they were incorrectly attired.

“Keep walking.” Janie hissed.

“Elisabeth Bannerman and Edith Yates. You are not seniors why are you dressed like that?” Mrs Grace gasped.

So taken was she with the two of them that Isabelle and Janie slipped away.

“We were just airing our clothes.” Edith said matter-of-factly.

“Is that a fact?” Mrs Bainbridge appeared.

“Don’t lie now.” Mrs Grace whispered and moved away to leave them to the principal.

“We heard that Beauregard Duvall was in town and we were contemplating a stroll around town in the hopes of seeing him. Then we realised that it would be ill advised and had decided to return to our rooms.” Edith said just keeping the right side of the truth.

“I see.” Mrs Bainbridge appeared to consider that for a moment.

Elisabeth, whose mouth was quite dry, hoped for a moment that Mrs Bainbridge would accept that and just tell them to report to Maud.

“How very spirited of you.” Mrs Bainbridge said pleasantly. “Come into my study for a minute and you can explain that to Peter.”

The two friends exchanged horrified glances and then with legs like jello they followed the principal to her room.

Mrs Bainbridge was cheerful as she took up Peter and suggested lightly that they raise their skirts and lower their draws.

“Now Elisabeth if you steady your friend as she obliges me by placing herself across my desk we would be so grateful.” Mrs Bainbridge said with an edge to her voice.

Edith swallowed and did as she was ordered.

“What a perfectly magnificent posterior you have Edith.” Mrs Bainbridge chuckled.

“Thank Ma’am.” Edith breathed in terror.

“Peter is most displeased with you as he is about to explain.”

The first stroke cut deep and took Edith by surprise. Even Elisabeth jumped.

Then before either could consider the matter the second took the girl low.

“Can you hear him Edith?” Mrs Bainbridge growled and struck again. “He barks.”

Then with the fifth stroke, “he bites.”

“Yes Ma’am. Oh.” Edith gasped.

“Will you dress so again?” The sixth sliced up and under.

“No Ma’am.” Edith wailed.

“Will you defy my rules again?” The seventh bit hard.

“No.” Edith wept.

“Peter speaks do you hear him?”

Edith just grunted knowing that with each question would come a stroke.

“Answer me girl.”

“Yes ma’am.”

“Will you defy me again?”

“Will you?”

Edith was lost in a world of tears by the time she had taken 18 strokes and Mrs Bainbridge was satisfied with the punitive tapestry she had woven on the girl’s bare bottom.

“You may both face the wall until Edith has recovered enough to assist you Elisabeth.” Mrs Bainbridge said at last.

Then as Elisabeth stood shaking and Edith sobbing, Mrs Bainbridge compared the caned and uncaned bottoms.

“Tell me were you returning or just going out when you were caught?”

“Returning Ma’am.” Elisabeth spoke in a whisper.

“Were you alone?”

“No Ma’am.” Edith sobbed.

“Care to tell me with whom you were adventuring?”

“Please Ma’am we would rather not.”

“Not even if I told you that you will take another caning for leaving this school and then two further canings on behalf of the friends you are defending?”

Edith broke down at this and Elisabeth quailed at the prospect of four canings like the one she had just witnessed.

“We can’t say Ma’am.” Edith answered for them at last.

“Does she speak for you both?” Mrs Bainbridge asked Elisabeth with a mighty swish of the cane.

Elisabeth jumped but answered bravely: “Yes Ma’am.”

“Good girls I can’t abide snitches.” Mrs Bainbridge said brightly. “Now Elisabeth if you would take your place. Peter wants to have a word with you.”

Elisabeth moved reluctantly to the desk as Edith followed moving more slowly and grimacing all the way.

As Elisabeth bent over and Edith took her hands Mrs Bainbridge observed: “Another fine pair of buttocks, Peter will enjoy this.”

What followed was the worst pain that Elisabeth had ever experienced. It was all that Edith could do to hold her down. Compared to this, Miss Coolidge’s corrections were mild and Maud’s spankings were love pats.

In the beginning, it was all but impossible to answer Mrs Bainbridge’s rhetoric and then all she could do was howl,

It was with intense gratitude that finally she faced the wall again alongside Edith.

“Now girls if you ever leave the school without permission again. You will have to explain yourself to Paul. Now get out of my sight.”

It took an age to walk up the stairs to their rooms where Maud was waiting.

“You silly little fools.” She chided.

There was a maid with her and they had cold compresses and from somewhere ice.

“Oh you are an angel Maud.” Edith sobbed.

They were both laid face down on Maud’s bed to be tended to. As Elisabeth’s tears cleared, she saw that Janie and Isabelle were in their night things facing the wall. They held their gowns in the small of their backs and blushed furiously at being so displayed before the maid.

“Our friends here are due a stiff dose of the battledore. I can’t see them get off scot-free. Once we have eased you a little you can enjoy the show. Can’t they girls?”

“Yes Miss Maud.” The two miscreants facing the wall said in unison.

*

At the end of the year, although she protested otherwise, Elisabeth was secretly pleased to learn that she had only been promoted to the junior class and that she still had another two years at Bainbridge’s.

“Cheer up at least we will be all together.” Isabelle said cheerfully expressing the feelings of them all.

“Yes all of us including these old friends.” Janie said ruefully tugging on her blues at the short hemline.

“Not all.” Elisabeth said sadly as her eyes fell on Maud.

“Well looks like I am done here.” Maud said with tears in her eyes. “I hope you have a stricter hall monitor than I was next year, you little brats need keeping in line.”

“I think you were handy enough with that battledore of yours.” Edith said.

“I think you know I wasn’t.” Maud said tartly.

“Oh goodbye Maud.” Elisabeth burst into tears and hugged her friend.

“It’s still Miss Maud to you or I will take you upstairs one last time.” Maud said returning the hug.

“Yes Miss Maud.” They all chanted before the five of them dissolved in to laughter.

*

The ranch seemed so small to Elisabeth and it was strange to think that she would spend the whole summer here before seeing her friends again. Rachel had come with Tom to pick her up and on the long ride home, after some reluctance, Elisabeth had told her sister-in-law all her adventures, from the birthday spanking right through to the ill-fated Beaureagrd Duvall adventure.

After supper, she stood on the porch and watched the sunset.

Rachel came out of the house to join her and they stood gazing for a moment.

“Do you still have that pocket-knife about you?” Rachel asked suddenly.

“Yes I think I do why?” Elisabeth was puzzled.

“Well in this family we have certain traditions to observe.” Rachel said seriously. “You get punished at school you get punished at home.”

Elisabeth gaped at her.

“I am a woman grown you can’t possibly.”

“We will disregard the punishments you got at the hands of your friend Maud, but some of the others will need to be paid off over the next couple of weeks. Especially the incident with Mr Duvall.”

“Please Rachel I.”

“Yes?” Rachel gave her hard stare.

Elisabeth didn’t answer.

“Let’s go and cut that first switch.” Rachel took her sister-in-law by the arm and they headed towards the barn.

Elisabeth’s mind raced, but she didn’t resist.

Rachel thought back on Ginny’s teaching and even though she was not being fair, well except maybe about Elisabeth running off to see the vaudeville man, she knew that she needed to put the girl in her place if they were ever going to survive the summer with such a headstrong girl.

Continues in the School Daze of Elisabeth Bannerman: the last days of Eden



5 Responses to “Elisabeth Bannerman’s School Daze: the wise fools”

  1. 1 Todd

    Year two – presumably meets Paul. Year three – hall monitor?

    • 2 DJ

      who is Paul?

      Hall monitor year three who knows?

      I am sure you getting at something. 🙂

      Thanks anyway.

      DJ

      • 3 Todd

        In any case, Mrs Bainbridge held up her hand to silence her. Then she went to her cabinet and took out a long school cane.

        After her earlier experience and the undoubted substance to the maids threats Elisabeth swallowed and wondered what was coming next.

        “This is Peter.” Mrs Bainbridge said with a faraway smile. “He has a brother Paul that only the worst of my girls ever see. But you will find Peter persuasive enough if he ever needs to talk to you.”

        • 4 DJ

          Hi Todd

          Oh yes that Paul 🙂

          It seems likely that someone will meet Paul. Or is he a myth?

          DJ

  2. 5 Teach Dj

    Anyone want to learn DJ?


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