A Winter’s Tale IV


winter spankingPart I

Her close fitting breeches were too rough and scratchy to be bourn against her birch ravaged flesh. So despite his appraising gaze she left them off and tugged her shirt low in back in the hopes of preserving her already fled modesty.

Even released from the corner more than an hour after her punishment it was all she could do not to give in to more tears. Her bottom still throbbed and burned and if breeches could not be sustained against it, then sitting down was quite out of the question.

“Ivan,” she said mournfully, her sorry gaze crimson and downcast as she fixed it on the rough planked floor.

“You wish to speak?” he growled.

Sofia Molotov nodded.

“That was a light punishment I gave, so think yourself lucky. I have no time for brats and nor do you if we are to last this winter,” he barked.

She sobbed a little as she was cowed.

“I know,” she whispered.

He nodded and let his anger fade. The truth was he wondered if he had been hard on her. After all she was a privileged princess and perhaps not used to being thrashed so. He did not want to break her, just make her mind him.

“Ivan, I am sorry, I… I know what you did,” she continued. “I wanted to… to thank you for saving me and for… for whipping me as I deserve.”

The words were a shock to her, but he accepted them with a tight smile and a sigh. She bristled for a moment as the noblewoman in her reasserted itself. She had apologised to him and humbled herself and he acted as if it was his due. Her bottom throbbed in time to the rising blood of her cheeks. It saved her from further folly and she cursed herself inwardly. Of course it was his due. Would she never learn? She deserved another sound thrashing for her pride.

“Come, sit and eat,” he said awkwardly reaching for a bowl.

“Thank you, but I… I would rather stand,” she replied with a wince.

Ivan laughed.


The winter came hard after that. It seemed to Sofia that not a moment passed when the wind did not blow and even on quieter days the gale tore at the roof to sing in the rafters like all the demons of hell.

The image was a salutary one for Sofia. Outside the forest and chill wind represented her sins and folly. While inside with Ivan she was safe and secure. Despite his rough ways she came to think of him as a kind of vengeful angel ready to school her lest she fall back.

Since her narrow escape from the storm and her thrashing she felt like a woman reborn. In the days that followed she rose as early as Ivan and set about cleaning and helping prepare their meagre stores.

She even hauled on her breeches over her tender flesh; rough sandpaper against her grazed bottom that set her to wincing when she moved. It was a week before she could sit down even slightly and another before the marks really faded. Strangely she missed them when they finally went. It was almost as if she had lost something hard earned.

But the memory of the beating and the shame of it lingered to keep her meek at his words and she scurried at his every command. There was even an odd satisfaction in doing so.

“Here,” he said one day holding up a foul looking wooden bowl. “Taste this.”

A few weeks before she would have turned up her nose in disgust at his offering, or even uttered a curse as if she had been insulted, but now she bounded across the room like an eager puppy and smiled at him shyly. In his hand he held up some rich dark sticky gunk on a wooden spoon and invited her again to taste it.

Sofia’s nose wrinkled a little and she closed her eyes as she submitted to the ordeal. But instead of some slimy assault to her throat she found the honey-like treacle malty and bitter-sweet like good beer or well-buttered bread.

“It is malt. Good eh?” Ivan chuckled. “It keeps well and serves to provide extra energy in the long winter months.”

Sofia grinned and eagerly looked for more.

“We don’t have much, but it will go further on bread,” Ivan said as he put a lid back on the bowl.

Sofia pouted watched regretfully as he put the container back on the shelf.

“The wood is getting low,” Ivan said absently, “If the weather eases I may go out and get some more from the outside store in a day or so.”

Sofia frowned and took a doubtful peek out of the small window. There was no glass of course and she had to lift up a corner of grease paper and leather covering. The world outside was a swirl of wild whiteness.


Three days later the wind suddenly dropped and although the snow continued to fall, it was in gentle slow flakes that fell with tiny whispers of sound as they touched down onto the white carpet.

Sofia could see all the way to the trees now and she thought that she had never seen anything so beautiful.

“I am going to fetch some more wood,” Ivan announced as he too looked out. “I am going to be a few hours, but while the weather holds I want to pile as much on the lean-to by the door as I can before the wind gets up again.”

“Can I help?” Sofia asked eagerly. It had been weeks since she had been outside.

Ivan frowned and looked out at the forest for a moment.

“No, I think not,” he said in a serious tone, “the weather can turn on breath and I want to be able to cut and run back to the house as soon as it does and not have to worry about you.”

Sofia pouted until he actually glared at her and made her look down.

“You had better see to the evening meal before nightfall while you can still see,” he said firmly. “I am going to be as hungry as a bear.”

She nodded, pleased to at least be able to contribute something.

It was two hours before Sofia turned to the shelves where Ivan kept his pots and storage jars. She eyed the bean-stew wearily and wondered what else there was to liven the meal up. Then she spied the covered bowl of malt on the shelf.

She grinned and stole a glance over her shoulder at the door. It hadn’t been so long since Ivan had dropped a load onto the lean-to planking outside and she knew he would be at least another half hour.

What harm could it do, she wondered evilly? Then reaching up for the bowl she placed it on the rough plank table top by the hearth. It was easy to open and as soon as she had the pungent malty sweetness assailed her. One spoonful just to test it, she told herself.

First she let a finger steal along the rim and scoop up no more than a forkful. Then crooking the digit like a hook she placed a lick on her tongue. The sweet malty stickiness hung there for a moment and then melted at her throat. After months of scarce fare it was like nectar. In moments she had taken up a spoonful and then another.

She was contemplating one more and then replacing the lid when the door opened.

Ivan stood arms akimbo with a huge bundle of wood in his arms. His face danced with accusations and for a moment he had a killing look that quailed Sofia to her soul.

“We can spare just a scrape each on bread,” he bellowed, “You have more than that just on your lips.”

“I… I…” Sofia blanched as her heart lurched. It had been nothing, back at castle Molotov… but she wasn’t at home now and Ivan was poor.

Ivan took two strides and dropped the wood by the hearth. The sudden charge at her made Sofia jump, but the giant of a man turned as quickly and strode back to get the rest of his hoard.

Nine times he came and went, each time depositing a great load onto the ever growing pile. But not once did he look at Sofia until she began to think she had done no more than a small childish mischief.

Finally Ivan stopped at the door and closed it behind him before removing his coat and hanging it at a peg.

“Are you… are you going to… sp-spank me?” she asked sheepishly.

“Spank you? I ought to blister your backside with a birch rod you little thief,” he roared.

Sofia swallowed but couldn’t meet his eyes as she nodded.

Ivan snorted derisively and seemed to relax.

“In the spring I would have teased you and laughed it off for stealing sweets from a cookie jar, but I was hoping sweeten our Christmas a little and I have no more,” he sighed.

“Ivan, I am so sorry,” Sofia wailed, “here, let me fetch a rod. Beat me, beat me soundly as I deserved and as you would a peasant girl.”

Sofia moved towards the rods in the corner not sure if her courage would support such an assertion.

“My father once ordered that a thieving maid get a thousand lashes,” Sofia said earnestly. “She never stole again, even if she didn’t sit down for a month.”

Ivan laughed brightly and rocked back on the huge kindling box on which he now sat.

“I have a good mind to give you 50 or 60 lashes,” he chuckled, “I’d see you eat standing up for a week for the prank.”

Sofia gulped and remembered her last such chastisement.

“Come here,” Ivan growled in good humour.

In a moment he had grabbed her and tumbled her across is lap.

“Ivan…” Sofia wailed, uncertainty touching her voice.

Then she felt a tug at the draw string of her breeches and with scant resistance felt the soft leather slide over her bare bottom and down her naked thighs. A spanking was suddenly more embarrassingly intimate than being thrashed as a thief. It was a childish correction for a childish prank.

Ivan’s hand fell with an eye-widening blast that stole her breath. It was a spank that was quickly followed by another and yet more.

“Ivan,” Sofia shrieked, kicking out with her legs.

But any comedy fled as the sting and burn sizzled her bare bottom and in a moment she was panting hard as tears pricked at her eyes. God the man’s hand was hard, she thought, it couldn’t have been worse if he had been using a bread paddle.

Ivan spanked her for a good 10 minutes until laboured breathing had long since become wet whimpering and she was not surprised when Ivan set her on her feet and directed her to the corner.

“I have a good mind to send you to bed without your supper for this, but an hour with your breeches down will convince you of your shame just as well.

“Yes Ivan,” Sofia sniffed. Her bottom stung so badly she was infinitely grateful now he hadn’t birched her after all. This spanking was quite enough.


Far from being mad, Ivan teased her for days about stealing malt syrup until she punched him gently on the arm.

“I’m sorry,” she said shyly, “It was…”

Ivan shrugged.

“I know, I know, the food is boring and it is a long winter,” he sighed, “But who knows what the days to come will bring.”

Sofia had almost forgotten his words until one morning she awoke to a strange smell. Sitting up she saw a small package at the end of her bed and beyond the door in the next room an extra-large fire danced in the grate.

Almost as if he had been waiting for her to wake Ivan suddenly broke into song. It was an old traditional Christmas carol and he sang it well.

“Ivan? What the…” she gaped as the truth slowly dawned.

Ivan grinned as he entered the room cradling a small candle in his cupped hand singing as if his life depended upon it. Then finally like some dark St Nicholas he yelled “Merry Christmas.”

The small package turned out to be a small honeyed cake. Where Ivan had got it he would not say. But he did explain about the venison and the malt scarped bread cakes.

“It seems I had another pot of malt hidden away after all,” he winked, “And the stag wandered by while I was brining in the wood.”

“Ivan… oh,” tears sang in her eyes and in a moment she ran at the man and kissed him.

For a moment it was if nothing could ever be wrong in the world and then he stiffened and she blushed.

“Yes well,” he coughed.

“But I didn’t get you anything,” she winced.

Ivan shrugged.

“I know,” Sofia brightened, “My dagger… you can… keep it,” she said tentatively.

It was an assumption that he would have returned it and reminded them both of how they met.

“Thank you,” Ivan grinned with a bow, “I will treasure it.”

“So will I,” Sofia said breathily, but she was thinking of the moment.


6 Responses to “A Winter’s Tale IV”

  1. 1 Jay

    I’ve read so many artists who try too hard and make sex out of woulds with know real finesse or beauty.
    But you have a gift and I check daily to see what happens next.
    Always and forever.

  2. Yay! I’m still loving every minute of this riches to rags tale. I know that in reality these two would have no hope of anything that could last beyond the snow melting… but I very much hope that this fractured fairy tale has a fairy tale ending. Thanks again!

  3. sweet. I think this is one of my favorite stories of yours.

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