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Chapter 12 – The Punishment in the School Auditorium
Along with the deviant cops, several of the medical students from the Central Police Station were present in the school auditorium. As the male criminals looked over at the group of medical students standing with the cops, they knew they were in for a rough time. There was no legal need for the medical students to be present; they were there to have fun. Magda, the female student who had tormented the two burglars in Kim's presence, was included the group. She stood next to a cop she was dating, holding a box of medical gloves in her hand.
The 20 male criminals were forced to stand at the edge of the stage, facing away from their audience. Their punishment began when they were forced to kneel. When they put their heads to the floor, they were fully exposed to hundreds of jeering teenaged girls whose ages ranged from 15 to 18. A couple of female cops walked behind them, kicking apart the knees of the guys who were not spread widely enough. The harsh stage-lights shined brightly on the testicles and bottom-holes of the 20 young men.
The sight of 20 very exposed bottoms lined up on the stage was something the cops and medical students found extremely amusing. The cops, both male and female, kicked and slapped the kneeling criminals, to the point Spokesman Havlakt objected several times to their treatment. However the presiding judge in the auditorium was not the one same one who was in the gym. The criminals in the auditorium and their Spokesman received very little support or sympathy from the judge.
The female students were encouraged to taunt and whistle at the criminals. Many of the older girls remembered Eloisa's case and were sympathetic to the 20 guys on stage. They sat in the back of the auditorium and stayed quiet. However, the younger ones were elated at the spectacle unfolding in front of them. The teachers in the room were divided. Some of them secretly sympathized with the criminals, others felt they deserved everything coming to them because they had attacked one of their co-workers. It was an ugly case that continued to hurt the people involved and one that sharply split the school.
Four medical students put on medical gloves and shoved their fingers up the exposed bottoms of four of the ex-students. They massaged their prostate glands and forced furious erections from their victims. The cops then grabbed their arms and forced them stand up and face the audience. Four erect penises faced the mob of jeering teenagers. The cops, male and female, ran their hands up and down the criminal's bodies and teased them, to the delight of the girls in the front rows. The criminals' humiliation was complete, or so they thought.
Spokesman Havlakt was beside himself with disgust. There was no way he could get this to stop. The presiding judge would not support him, leaving him only the option of filing an official complaint once he got back to his office. However the complaint would do nothing to stop what was going on at the moment.
At last the first four criminals were ordered to kneel at the switching tables. As they knelt and kissed the shoes of the cops tormenting them, it was almost a relief to no longer have to stand in front of all those girls with their penises bobbing up and down. The cops secured them to the four switching tables. Magda, the medical student, placed her hand on the bottom of the criminal stretched out on the first of the four tables on stage. She addressed the audience.
“How many of you think criminal # 1 will cry first?”
A portion of the girls cheered.
“Very well…how many of you think criminal # 2 will cry first?”
Another portion of the girls cheered. She asked the question two more times for the other two criminals and got cheers from two other groups of girls.
Sergekt remained kneeling with his forehead touching the wooden stage floor and his bottom spread and high in the air. He was totally horrified. He knew that he would be humiliated and punished in the second batch of criminals with three others. He was so nervous he was sweating and shaking slightly.
Still, Sergekt was immensely grateful that at least Eloisa and her companions were not facing this awful treatment, nor did they have to witness it. He now understood why Vladik Dukov had been so determined to get control over the women in the group. What was happening to the guys was bad enough, but at least they did not have to watch these indignities heaped upon their female friends. From what Kim had told him, Sergekt understood that Vladik planned to punish the women and get them out of the school as quickly as possible. He fervently hoped they already had left.
The switchings began, four at the same time. The four cops struck as hard as they legally could, each trying to get his or her criminal to cry first. The four criminals, following the protocol of their subculture, resisted as best they could. They wouldn't have wanted to admit it, but they were competing against each other to see who could hold out the longest.
The four punishing officers struck the criminals simultaneously, but each trying a different tactic to get his or her victim to be the first to cry. They tried striking fast, striking slowly, punishing across the entire bottom, punishing one bottom-cheek at a time. The first criminal screamed at the 21st stroke, the last one at the 42nd stroke. All of them were crying towards the end of their punishments.
Spokesman Havlakt nervously went from table to table, waiting to do the one thing he was authorized to do. One by one he redirected the punishments against the criminals' backs or thighs to prevent permanent injury to their bottoms. When the punishments ended the Spokesman was sweating from stress and anger. However, he had to maintain his self-control. One group had been punished, there still were four other groups to go.
The police un-strapped the four criminals. The four young men were very badly marked up; their bottoms, upper backs, and upper thighs covered with dark welts. They staggered off and sank to the floor to kiss the shoes of their tormenters. One by one they were presented to the presiding judge, who signed each of their punishment certificates. To conclude their punishments, they had to thank the officers for the mistreatment they had just endured. With that they exited the stage towards the waiting van, to spend a long and painful afternoon on recovery tables.
Sergekt felt a hand caress his bottom. The hand slid between his legs and squeezed his testicles, so hard that he felt some discomfort. He felt his penis being massaged, and then the hand returned to fondling his testicles. He did not dare move his head or try to see the face of the cop who was tormenting him. Then he noticed part of a white smock out of the corner of his eye. His tormenter was not a cop, but one of the medical students. He felt a rough finger slide up his bottom. The finger briefly searched inside him and found what it was looking for, his prostate gland. He gasped and tears ran down the bridge of his nose as the finger circled around his gland and worked up a furious erection. The medical student began massaging his penis with her free hand and continued working his prostate from behind. She abruptly pulled her finger out of his bottom and ordered him to stand up. Sergekt did so, and was forced to face the audience. The medical student stood behind him, running her hands up his chest and pinching him. She whispered in his ear:
“You know, you filthy little beast, that you look like you could use some relief. You're all worked up and no one to fuck. Now isn't that sad?”
Sergekt was mortified at the thought the medical student might force an orgasm out of him on stage, but she knew better than to go that far. As it was the punishment crew stood very close to passing the legal line of mistreatment of the criminals in front of their under-age audience. Forcing Sergekt to have an orgasm on stage would definitely cross the line and result in a legal reprimand.
The girls sitting in the back and the teachers who had sided with the criminals were furious at what was going on. The school already was very bitterly divided over the merits of the sentences. The division would become even sharper after the punishment of today.
Sergekt and the other three criminals in his group finally were led to the punishment tables and kissed the shoes of the officers who would switch them. They bent over the tables and were strapped down. In spite of the fear of what was coming, he was relieved to no longer be standing up facing the auditorium with his erect penis on full display. However, the humiliation portion of his punishment was far from over. Several cops, male and female, as well as some medical students, caressed his bottom and continued to massage his penis, as he lay stretched out on the punishment table. It was the ultimate humiliation for Sergekt, to be touched by other guys.
Finally the cops in charge of actually wielding the switches took position. Sergekt was so mortified by what had just happened that he no longer was really paying attention to anything going on around him. Still, the criminal protocol of resisting his punishment as long as possible was burned into Sergekt's mind, and he was prepared to attempt not to scream or cry as long as possible.
Once again Magda posed the question to the screaming girls, which criminal would be the first to cry. The girls screamed the loudest when Magda touched Sergekt, making it even more important that he resist, just to prove them wrong.
The cop took her time delivering the first stroke. She made several false starts, trying to catch him off-guard and perhaps get him to scream at the very first stroke. Finally she struck, a hard vicious blow that burned into Sergekt’s backside and made him gasp as he tried to stay quiet. The cop patiently waited for a while and then struck again, with a stroke that approached, but unfortunately did not pass, the maximum legal standard. Sergekt clenched his fists and pressed his forehead to the table. Sweat trickled down his body. Very slowly the cop struck him again and again, waiting a very long time between each stroke. She would break him simply by dragging out the punishment. The pain was mounting and becoming intolerable, but the punishment was only beginning.
The female cop and a couple of medical students periodically ran their fingers over Sergekt's welts. They pressed hard on them, knowing that sharply increased the mounting pain from the raised reddish lines crisscrossing the criminal's bottom. The waiting was an important part of what made the punishment almost unbearable; the pain continued to mount and yet the punishment was no closer to ending. In spite of what he had told Kim in January, that nothing lasts forever, Sergekt now felt that attitude was a lie. The fact this was the sixth time he had endured a punishment didn't matter. What mattered was that he had only taken 10 strokes so far. There were 40 to go. It seemed this would indeed go on forever.
Spokesman Havlakt nervously walked from table to table, trying to prevent any serious injury to any of his clients and looking for anything that would allow him to cut short a switching. The one thing that would end a punishment immediately would be blood. Danubian law prohibited the further punishment of a criminal whose skin had been broken. In fact, if a cop broke a criminal's skin during a punishment, the officer risked losing the switch as part of his or her uniform and with it the right to punish criminals in the future. The officers were well aware of that limit and were very careful not to whip to the point of drawing blood. The Spokesman could see nothing that would legally justify stopping any of the punishments.
Sergekt made it to the 37th stroke without crying. He had defied the girls' prediction by being the third criminal out the four to start screaming. The final holdout cried out less than a minute after Sergekt broke. In this aspect at least, Sergekt maintained a shred of his dignity.
Sergekt's punishment ended in the usual manner, with six strokes re-directed against his thighs and another six on his upper back. He was in so much pain he nearly passed out, but with every bit of energy and self-control he had left, he struggled to get off the table and accompany the police officer to verify he had been properly punished. He knelt to thank the cop for punishing him and finally, an hour and a half after he first had been told to stand up from the stage, Criminal # 92876 was allowed to exit towards the waiting van.
Kim was well aware of what was going on inside the school. She picked up a batch of punishment certificates and caught a brief glimpse of the punishment in the auditorium. There were only four criminals still kneeling on the stage and four others on the tables, in the middle of their switchings. Even at a distance Kim could tell they were being savagely treated. She was relieved to see that Sergekt was no longer there. However, Dima was present, still kneeling on the stage. He would be in the final group to be punished.
Kim was surprised at the sharply contrasting attitudes of the girls filling the auditorium. The students in the back were sitting in disgusted silence, while the younger ones in the front were acting like they were at a rock concert. Kim decided to discuss the school's division with Vladim Dukov, hoping that somehow he would find the information useful.
Some of the girls sitting in the back sadly looked over at Kim as she left with her hands full of folders. The students recognized Kim as the “Maragana Girl”, having seen her singing on stage with the criminals being punished today. Kim took a last look at the eight criminals remaining on the stage. Besides, Dima, there were two others who Kim considered close friends. However, there was nothing she could do for them by staying. Kim left the school and rode with her folders downtown.
Kim returned to the school one last time in the mid-afternoon to pick up the final batch of punishment certificates. The students were back in their classes, pretending to pay attention to their teachers in spite of the spectacle they had just witnessed. The purpose of having the criminals punished in the school was to frighten the students into not getting into trouble themselves. That goal was easily achieved. There was not a student in the school who would have wanted to trade places with their ex-classmates.
Kim picked up her folders and quickly moved towards the main door, not wanting to be here any longer than necessary. However, she was stopped by one of the teachers, who signaled her to go with him to the school library. Once in the library the teacher quietly spoke to her in bad English.
“I want tell you. You…criminal…Advocat Vladim Dukov?”
“Yes sir. He's my Spokesman.”
“You know…many teacher…many student…we no like today. Very bad. Very bad. No good to criminal.”
Kim nodded. “Yes sir.”
“You good girl. Good singer. Now you help me. Take list to Advocat Vladim Dukov. You no show list…only Advocat Dukov.”
With that the teacher handed an envelope to Kim. It was fairly thick, but sealed. Kim looked at it, mystified. The teacher tapped it, nervously.
“You no show list.”
Kim understood. The envelope had to be hidden. She stuffed it among the other envelopes.
Kim quickly mounted her bike and sped to the Central Police Station. She should have gone to the Central Courthouse first, but she decided not to risk having someone there question the extra envelope she was carrying. She wanted to get rid of it as quickly as possible.
Kim entered her Spokesman's office, passing the two secretaries and two of Eloisa's female friends as they were rubbing lotion onto the welts of four punished male criminals. The contrast between the women and the guys shocked her. The two women still had switch-marks on their bottoms, but nothing too serious. The women moved about normally, none the worse for their experience with Vladik. The guys were covered with dark raised welts that looked awful. Kim realized that Officer Vladik Dukov really had spared the group's women.
She entered Dukov's office to find him there with four other Spokespersons, including Eloisa's. Dukov’s co-workers looked at her with surprised expressions. Kim quietly started to back out, but Dukov called her back. He addressed her in Danubian.
“Kimberly, I presume you have something urgent, to have come in here with such haste?”
Oops. Kim had forgotten her public duty as a criminal. In the presence of the other Spokespersons she had to greet Dukov in the formal manner, not just charge into the office. She immediately dropped to her knees and placed her head on the floor. She held out the teacher's envelope. Dukov took it, but did not give Kim permission to stand up. She felt very strange, given that she never had knelt for her Spokesman before.
Dukov opened the envelope and unfolded the sheets of paper it contained.
“Kimberly, please rise and finish your deliveries. Once your assignment has been completed, you are dismissed. You may wish to report to Eloisa. I believe she could use your assistance.”
“Yes, Spokesman Dukov.”
Kim bicycled across the main plaza to make her final delivery. Upon getting back she sought out Eloisa, and finally found her in Spokesman Havlakt's office. She was with Dima, standing next to his table. He was very badly marked up, not just from the 50 maximum-strength stokes of the switch he had received, but also from having been struck on the shoulders at the beginning of the punishment and having been slapped many times across the face. His face was swollen and his lip had been cut. He was asleep, or to put it more accurately, he had passed out.
Kim was not surprised that Dima had been treated so badly. What did surprise her was to see Eloisa holding his hand and caressing it. She looked up at Kim with tears streaming down her cheeks. She noticed Kim's surprised expression, given that she had never seen Eloisa touch anyone before.
“I…I need to be a bit stronger for him.” Eloisa stated sadly. “I'm going to make myself get over my fear of touching people. I need to…be…a real woman for him. I realized that when I saw him this afternoon. He's given up everything for me. The least I can do is hold his hand.”
Kim was so upset she felt sick. “What did they do to Sergekt?”
“He's better. He forced himself to get up to help the others come in at the end. Sergekt's tough. I don't know where he is now, though. I'd guess he's in one of the offices, or maybe helping people get home.”
“I want to find him.” Eloisa sadly nodded. Kim continued. “Will you be OK?”
“Kimberly, I have to be OK. I have no choice.”
Kim spent the next few minutes looking for Sergekt, but instead ran across her Spokesman. Dukov signaled Kim to go back into his office. The other Spokespersons were gone, ending the temporary need for Kim to treat him in the formal manner. He was very agitated.
“Kimberly, I wish to ask you something. Are you aware of the contents of the envelope you gave me today?”
“No, Spokesman Dukov.”
“Well, I will tell you. What you handed me was a petition, signed by 37 teachers, three administrators, and 138 students. The petition objected to the immoral treatment of your friends today. The teacher who worded the petition argues that to punish criminals in such a blatantly sexual manner will corrupt the morals of the school's young people. What they want is the punishments to stop, or at the very least to be moved elsewhere.”
Dukov sat back, stretched his arms backwards, and continued.
“There is something else I wish to tell you, which may or may not help you. All 20 Spokespersons in Danube City finally have agreed that our system of corporal punishment needs to be reformed. I will introduce legislation next week that would specifically prohibit police officers from touching a criminal with their hands during a punishment. We wish to outlaw any act designed to sexually satisfy a police officer. Also, we wish to outlaw allowing persons such as medical students to participate in corporal punishments.”
Kim said nothing, not really knowing how to react. Dukov put on a pair of surgical gloves and opened up an ancient-looking law book that was placed in a felt-lined wooden tray.
“Today's decision is a very grave step on our part, Kimberly. Our judicial system has kept our country at peace for ten centuries. We have had only two major reforms during that entire time. The first was in 1524. That was when our King, Vladik the Defender, created the position of Spokesman for the Criminal. The second was in 1780. That was when the Grand Duke abolished the use of whips and instead opted for switches. We have had no reforms since 1780.”
“So why now? What's made things different?”
“What has made things different is a recent breakdown of morality among the younger police officers. The sexual abuse of criminals is something that started only about 10 years ago. When I was sentenced, no police officer would have disrespected a criminal in the manner we are seeing today. Now the practice is becoming common. It will destroy our entire judicial system if we do not stop it. The problem we face is public opinion and the widespread belief that a police officer should have complete control over a criminal's corporal punishment, within the standards set in 1780. The standards of 1780 no longer properly protect criminals, so we must set new ones.”
“But, what's the problem? I mean, isn't obvious that it's wrong to like, rub us and…?”
“No, Kimberly. It is not so obvious. I can tell you there is very little sympathy for criminals in this country. We cannot debate this issue by arguing that criminals deserve leniency. We need to argue from the point of view that the changes are needed to protect public morality. That is why the petition from the school is so important. It supports my argument in terms acceptable to the people of this nation. What we saw at the school today was immoral acts being performed in front of young teenagers. Those girls were corrupted by what they witnessed. That gives me the image I can use to make my argument when I speak next week.”
“So, you're going to the Parliament next week?”
“Aren't you scared?”
“Yes, Kimberly. I anticipate this with much anxiety. I am not a politician, and to challenge the statute of 1780 will disrupt the tranquility of my family's life. It will bitterly divide the Judges, the National Police Force, the schools, and the public. I will be blamed for disrupting the peace of our society. Only the Spokespersons are in complete agreement about the need for reform. My responsibility over the next several months will be to convince the rest of the nation. At the beginning that task will be very difficult.”
Kim left the office, briefly wondering about the wisdom of her decision to stay in Upper Danubia. What the hell was wrong with this country, that its people didn't recognize the obvious? Who wouldn't want to put a stop to what had happened in the school auditorium today?
And yet, change was indeed coming to the Duchy. There were good people in the police force, in the schools, and in the legal system, who would push for reform. Some would challenge the system because of their definition of public morality, others out of genuine sympathy for the nation's criminals. Perhaps it would be enough to update a law that was two centuries old. Kim held out hope the result would be a better Upper Danubia, one in which she would feel more comfortable spending her life.
With that Kim returned to Eloisa and her boyfriend. He was up and somewhat recovered. The three left the Central Police Station. Tomorrow was another day, one in which Kim and Eloisa would return to the music store, and Sergekt and Dima would be returning to their café. There would be a rehearsal tomorrow night and a concert to prepare for on Saturday.Every four months the 28 members of Eloisa's group went through this. They still had over a year of wearing their collars and at least three more switchings left on their sentences.